Tooth Loss And Other Health Issues

tooth lossIt’s been said numerous times that your oral health plays a big roll in your overall health. So it’s no surprise, that some recent studies have shown that tooth loss leads to other health issues. The study, which is mentioned on Dentistry Today, indicates that memory and walking speed of adults without teeth decline at a higher rate compared to those who still have teeth.

Read more about this interesting study on Dentistry Today here: Tooth Loss may Lead Other Health Issues.

Laughing Gas May Treat Depression

Iflaughing gas you thought that nitrous oxide (aka laughing gas) was used just for dental procedures, think again.  A new study indicates that it’s possible for laughing gas to treat depression. The research, from Washington University, conducted a study of patients who’s mental health wasn’t improving after using other forms of treatment.  They were then given laughing gas or a placebo.  It turned out that the patients that received the laughing gas saw major improvements.

You can read more about this interesting study of laughing gas and depression on Dentistry Today here: Laughing Gas May Treat Depression.

Eating Disorders and Your Dental Health

For some, eating disorders are unfortunately a part of every day life. These abnormal eating habits often involve either insufficient or excessive food intake to the detriment of an individual’s physical and psychological health. Just like a nutritional, balanced diet influences our overall health, a lack thereof can negatively influence it and in turn, create multiple oral and general health problems.

Eating disorders such as Anorexia Nervosa (anorexia), Bulimia Nervosa (bulimia) and compulsive over-eating can create an array of dental and periodontal ailments. The most common of these being: tooth enamel erosion, tooth decay and soft tissue damage. Click the link below to learn additional dental issues associated with eating disorders.

Eating disorders are serious threats, not only one’s dental health but more importantly, their life. If you or anyone you know is suffering from an eating disorder, please seek help.

You can read more about the individual eating disorders and how they affect oral health here.

The Importance of Touch and Teens

I recently read a great article on about the importance of touch and teens (check it out here). Physical touch is an important part of all relationships, including parent/child. As our children become teens they tend to decrease in physical affection and it may take extra effort to find ways to have appropriate physical contact with them.

As a parent, I am trying to incorporate daily touch with my children as one of my expressions of love. I have several children that just crave touch, whether it’s rubbing their back or letting them sit on my lap to cuddle. I have a niece that needs physical contact so much that she’ll actually get into people’s personal space just to be in close proximity to them.

I also have two children that are more resistant to physical contact. They roll their eyes when I give them a hug or they just stand there and let me hug them but don’t reciprocate.  I have to remind myself that just because they are not openly affectionate does not mean that they don’t need physical contact. So I make an extra effort to give them a hug, put my arm around them or give them some sort of physical contact during the day.

The article I mentioned above gives some great ideas for providing physical touch to teens who may be less affectionate. One thing that I like to do (since I have a bunch of girls), is to play with their hair by running my fingers through it while watching TV or just braiding it for fun.

I firmly believe that physical touch is a great way to heal, bring comfort and show our love to our children. As the old adage says, “Have you hugged your child today?”

Stressed Out? Relaxation tips for teens and everyone else.

It’s Back to School in many parts of the nation. While some children are beyond excited to get back into school, others can find it very stressful, especially if returning to school means a big change like entering Jr. High or High School.

There are many reasons why a teenager might feel stressed. Perhaps they are dealing with peer pressure or bullying. Lack of sleep, feeling overwhelmed with schoolwork, physical changes associated with puberty, difficulties at home, feelings of self consciousness or worries about the future can all lead to increased stress.

Some of the signs of a stressed teenager could include: depression, irritability, increased attitude, trouble sleeping, changes in eating patterns, anxiety or physical symptoms such as headaches or stomach aches.

Learning how to effectively deal with stress is an important part of living a healthy and productive life.

Relaxation tips for teens and everyone else…

  • Get adequate sleep. When we are overworked or tired, it is difficult to stay positive making little things become big issues. Often, after a full night’s sleep we can view problems with the proper perspective and find solutions easier.
  • Find a hobby or participate in an enjoyable activity. Whether it is a hot bath, reading, listening to music, dancing, cooking or other activity, spending time each day doing something enjoyable can help alleviate stress.
  • Help someone. Find someone in need (it could be something as simple as being a friend) or volunteer in the community. Often when stressed we turn our focus inward. Our problems tend to diminish when we reach out toward others.
  • Laughter is the best medicine. Watch a comedy, listen to a stand up comedian or find someone who makes you laugh.
  • Spending time with friends or having someone to talk to makes all the difference.
  • Exercise is one of the best ways to relieve tension. It could be as simple as going for a walk or jog.
  • Writing your thoughts and feelings down on paper alleviates stress and can also help you see your problems with new perspective.
  • Take a little time each day to separate yourself from the world–find a quiet place away from distractions such as TV, music, movies, Internet, etc. and allow time to sit, breathe deeply and think.
  • Make a list of what is in your control and what is not. Let go of the things you can’t do anything about.
  • Be positive. Look for the things that are going well in your life and give yourself credit for the good things that you are accomplishing.