Malocclusion (literally meaning “bad bite”) is the number one reason people seek orthodontic treatment. There are many different forms of malocclusion, such as:
• Crowding: Crowding can cause poor jaw alignment, impacted teeth, or teeth growing behind or in front of one another, resulting in poor biting relationships and undesirable appearance. Crowding only gets worse over time. Crowded teeth are harder to clean then straight teeth, which may lead to cavities and tooth decay.
• Overjet or protruding upper teeth: When the upper front teeth stick out too far forward, or the lower teeth don’t extend enough this is called protrusion. Thumb and finger sucking habits can also cause a protrusion of the upper front teeth. Significant dental protrusion can cause speech and chewing problems and can be unsightly.
• Deep overbite: A deep overbite or deep bite occurs when the lower incisor (front) teeth bite too close or into the gum tissue behind the upper teeth. A deep bite can contribute to excessive wear of the incisor teeth, bone and gum tissue damage.
• Open bite: An open bite results when the upper and lower incisor teeth do not touch when biting down. This open space causes all the chewing pressure to be placed on the back teeth. This excessive biting pressure and rubbing together of the back teeth makes chewing less efficient which can lead to digestive problems and significant tooth wear.
• Spacing: Spacing is too much room between the teeth. Spacing can occur if teeth are missing, small, or if the dental arches are wide. The most common complaint from patients with excessive spacing is cosmetic. Closure of dental spacing not only improves the look of the front teeth but it also prevents “food traps” from developing between the back teeth.
• Crossbite: A crossbite exists when the upper teeth in the back are fitting on the inside of the lower teeth. This is often caused by the upper jaw being too narrow. Correction of this situation is important at a young age so that the upper jaw continues to grow properly. Expanders are usually used to correct this, and give excellent results.
• Underbite or lower jaw protrusion: An underbite exists when the top front teeth are hitting behind the bottom front teeth. Underbites are best treated at a young age so that the upper jaw continues to grow properly.
Orthodontic treatment is a viable option to correct these malocclusions. If you think, you or your child has developed any of these bite problems, now is the time to start looking for orthodontists. If you are interested in learning more about braces, or about your specific orthodontic needs, call to schedule a consultation appointment.
How a person stands or walks can be a sign of overall health. A healthy person will stand straight and upright. From a side view, their head should be over their spine, and their neck should have a backward C, and the spine should have a backward S curve.
From the front, their head should be evenly over their shoulders, which means the head should not be tilted to either side. The shoulders and hips should be level with the floor and finally their feet should be parallel with each other. When one walks, both arms should be swinging back and forth.
Temporo-mandibular joint disorder (TMJ/TMD) is one of the conditions that can affect the way a person stands or walks. Typically a person with TMD may have all or some of the following symptoms: head is forward, hip is forward, unleveled shoulders, tilted head, unleveled hips, unparallel feet, and when they walk, one or both arms will not move.
The person may exhibit posture that is caused by pain somewhere in their body. The pain may be “subclinical.” This is where a person feels pain but ignores it or gets use to it because the pain is chronic. One example is tooth pain; your body gives you a sign that there is something wrong with a tooth but you ignore it.
Most of the time a person who is experiencing pain will take pain medication trying to get over the pain. But, usually, the pain does not disappear but their pain tolerance goes up. The body is very smart; it has a large range of tolerance for pain. It will do anything to get out of pain and one way it does it is by compensations. The body will adjust itself to relieve the pain. The body will move in a way to reduce the pain.
So, if keeping your head straight causes pain, you will adjust, or compensate, by tilting it or moving it forward. TMD can cause enough pain that the body will change its entire posture. TMD arises when the disk in the jaw joint gets displaced. Due to this displacement, it causes pain and the body will do anything to relieve the pain. One of the adjustments is the head forward movement. One of the early signs of TMD is clicking or popping of the jaw joint (TMJ).
In the early stages of TMD, there may be no pain or some mild pain. Most people ignore these signs and take over-the-counter pain medications to relieve the pain. But, TMD is a progressive disorder, so the symptoms will only get worse.
So, look at yourself in the mirror. Do you like what you see? Are you standing straight? Are you walking straight and both arms swing next to your body. If the answer is no, you may have TMD. Early treatment is much easier, compared to if you wait.
A consultation with your local dentist who treats TMD can help you correct your condition. Remember, a little prevention goes a long way.
Male pattern baldness is the most common type of non-scarring hair loss in men. It affects the superior portion of the scalp and results from a genetically determined sensitivity to androgens (the male hormone).
It is often referred to as simple baldness, male pattern alopecia, hereditary alopecia, male androgenic or androgenetic alopecia.
Other types of hair loss in men may be a result of an underlying medical condition or medication, among other reasons. Most of these cases may be a temporary, reversible condition once treated.
Hair transplantation offers a permanent solution with little risk involved. Even though it may be somewhat costly, it is a cost effective expenditure when fees are amortized over one’s lifetime.
Other forms of hair replacement surgery (such as flaps or scalp reductions) are higher risk procedures, which may require general anesthesia, and are only indicated in certain pre-selected cases, and could be quite costly.
Other types of medical treatments offer a less than acceptable, temporary solution in certain areas of the scalp. Minoxidil (Rogaine), a topical solution which must be applied to the scalp for the rest of one’s life; and Finasteride (Propecia), an oral medication approved by the FDA, with limited results and some side effects, are the two drugs in question. In either case, whatever little hair growth occurred will soon fall out once they are no longer used. They may be used in conjunction with hair transplantation.
What Should I Do Next?
Schedule a appointment with a hair loss specialist to evaluate your hair loss. This will require only 30 to 45 minutes of your time, depending on how many questions you may have.
During this private, confidential consultation you should meet with
the doctor. He/she will review your medical history and examine your scalp to determine your potential success as a hair transplant candidate and rule out any underlying medical condition that may be responsible for your hair loss.
Once that has been determined, the doctor will recommend the extent of the grafts, and number of procedures necessary to attain density and coverage in the treated area.
Each step of the process should be explained in full detail, as well as other treatment options and the minor risks involved with the procedure.
How does stress impact hair loss?
When the body experiences stress caused by a traumatic experience, nutritional deficiency, or illness, the rate of hair loss can increase. An example of this occurred in a man whose four-year-old child died. Within just a few months, he lost all but the permanent wreath of hair around his head.
Women’s hair seems to be more sensitive to the effects of stress than men’s hair. This may be because women with a genetic predisposition towards hair loss usually have a higher percentage of fragile miniaturized hair.
It is important to note that stress generally causes the type of hair loss referred to as telogen effluvium. This is very different from androgenetic alopecia (male or female pattern baldness). Telogen effluvium is the reversible shedding of hair in the resting phase when the body senses that it needs to divert its energies elsewhere. Therefore, stress temporarily changes the amount of hair that is shed, but the lost hair is likely to grow back.
Does lack of blood supply cause hair loss?
Some assert that a lack of blood supply contributes to hair loss. Bald skin gradually loses some of its blood supply and, consequently, it becomes thin and shiny. These changes, however, are secondary to the loss of hair.
Hair follicles are one of the most rapidly metabolizing tissues in the body; their high metabolic rate demands an excellent blood supply to carry oxygen and other nutrients to the cells. If the blood supply diminishes, the follicle cells wither and die.
Growing hair requires the proper nutrition that comes with a good blood supply. When hair follicles are transplanted into skin grafts or scar tissue, both of which have a relatively poor blood supply, the presence of the grafted hair causes the local blood supply to increase.
Does lack of air circulation to the head cause hair loss?
No. Folklore says that men who constantly wear hats are more likely to become bald, as hats prevent air from circulating to the head. Hair follicles get their oxygen through the bloodstream, rather than from ambient air. Factors that affect only the exposed part of the hair do not injure the growing portion of the hair root.
One exception to this is that constant traction on hair follicles, such as from the continuous wearing of “cornrows” or very tight braids, can cause permanent hair loss. This condition is called traction alopecia and is distinct from androgenetic alopecia.
Do hair styling treatments cause hair loss?
Many people change the appearance of their hair by using chemical treatments like dyes, tints, bleaches, straighteners, relaxers, and permanent weaves. Hair can break if the solution is left on too long, if two procedures are done on the same day, or if bleach is applied to previously bleached hair.
Some chemical relaxers do contain powerful chemicals and there have been instances of people getting chemical burns from these products resulting in permanent hair loss.
Last month’s article discussed male/female pattern baldness, or androgenic alopecia. This is the leading cause of baldness in the vast majority of cases. This month we’ll look at other possible causes of hair loss.
Alopecia Areata. In this type of hair loss, hair falls out, usually resulting in totally smooth round patches about the size of a coin or larger. Even though the cause is unknown, there seems to be an immune element involved, as evidenced by the response to local steroid treatment in some patients.
Childbirth. Pregnant women do not lose as much hair as they did before they were pregnant. However, after delivery, many hairs enter the resting phase of the cycle. Within 2-3 months, some women will notice large amounts of hair falling out. This can last 1-6 months, but resolves completely in most cases.
High Fever, Severe Infection, Severe Flu. One to three months after any of these conditions, a person may be shocked to see a lot of hair falling out. This shedding usually corrects itself.
Thyroid Disease. Both an overactive thyroid and an underactive thyroid can cause hair loss. This can be diagnosed by your physician with laboratory tests. This type of hair loss can usually be reversed.
Inadequate Protein Intake. Crash diets that exclude protein or abnormal eating habits may result in protein malnutrition. The body will help save protein by shifting growing hairs into the resting phase. Massive hair shedding can occur 2-3 months later. Hair can then be pulled by the roots fairly easily. This condition can obviously be reversed and prevented by eating proper amounts of protein.
Medications. Some prescription and over-the-counter drugs may cause temporary hair shedding in some people. High doses of vitamin A and selenium may also cause hair shedding.
Cancer Treatments. These will cause hair cells to stop dividing. Hairs then become thin and break off as they exit the scalp. This may occur 1-3 weeks after treatment. Patients can lose as much as 90% of their scalp hair. The hair will regrow after treatment ends.
Birth Control Pills. Women who lose hair associated with birth control pills usually have an inherited tendency towards hair loss. If this occurs, they should consider switching to another birth control pill or method. When they stop the contraceptive, hair will begin shedding 2-3 months later, and continue for six months when it usually stops. This is similar to what happens after childbirth.
Over 50% of the male population has cosmetically significant male pattern hair loss in their 50’s. There is pressure on individuals to look younger socially and in the workplace. Society wants superior solutions and wants these solutions now. There is a growing interest in anti-aging treatments, herbal formulas and holistic medicine. Businesses are attempting to take advantage of this demand. They offer products that are not efficacious and are misrepresented.
Better education on the proven methods of treating hair loss is needed. Hair transplantation, Rogaine (minoxidil), and Propecia (finasteride) are the only clinically proven medical hair loss treatments. Until a new drug is found, cloning is perfected, or genetic therapy refined, they remain the best solutions for the hair loss population.
What Is Trendy?
Currently, the products generating the most interest are Avacor, Nioxin, Dutasteride and saw palmetto.
Avacor®, from Global Vision 2001, is a heavily marketed product that claims to be an all-natural, herbal formulation that is effective immediately, with results shown in 4-6 months. While the company uses clinical data to support its claims, they are in actuality a “non-peer-reviewed, non-double-blind, seemingly scientific study subsidized by the makers of the product.”
Nioxin® is a cleanser scalp therapy and scalp serum, which is marketed as a way to clean the scalp of DHT (the known cause of non-traumatic hair loss) and to provide chemically enhanced hair with moisture/vitamin nourishment. The product contains niocidin, which inhibits demodex produced lipase. However, there has never been any study that implicates demodex lipase in hair loss or that shows that hair will benefit from getting rid of mites or their lipase.
Dutasteride, from Glaxo Smith Kline, is the most promising of the products or medications outside of the three therapies mentioned above. Early studies show promising results, however, the potential side effects require further trials and testing for overall efficacy and safety. Dutasteride has been marketed with the brand name Avodart®.
Saw palmetto, an unproven herbal remedy, is available from multiple sources. It is an over-the-counter herb that has been claimed as effective as a supplement for thinning hair. General usage recommends taking 400mg of standardized extract with 100mg of beta sirosterol daily. It is claimed that results will appear in five months.
There are numerous other products and devices available to the consumer. A random sampling of the most prominent products will be discussed in next month’s article.
Your retirement years should be the most enjoyable and a reverse mortgage may help make that ambition a reality. A reverse mortgage enables senior homeowners, 62 years and older, to convert a part of the equity in their home into tax free income without having to sell the home, give up title or take on a required monthly mortgage payment. As there are no restrictions on the use of funds, the process may be used to improve the quality of life and make your retirement years more enjoyable.
Borrowers will never, under any circumstances, resulting from a reverse mortgage be forced to leave their homes, providing they keep their home in reasonable living condition and maintain their real estate property tax and insurance.
Funds received from a reverse mortgage can be used in virtually any way the borrower chooses. A borrower may receive their funds in a lump sum, in monthly increments, as a credit line or any combination of these options. As for repayment, the loan is repayable when the borrower sells the home or permanently moves out. In addition the repayment amount cannot exceed the value of the home at the time the loan becomes due.
This flexibility paired with no required monthly mortgage payments allow senior borrowers to use their equity for many different purposes, such as paying off debts, assisting with medical bills, helping loved ones or making home improvements.
The most uplifting result of a reverse mortgage is the assurance and security it allows for so many seniors. A reverse mortgage could be right for you if you are 62 years of age or older, would like to remain in your home, and could use some extra cash to help you with your financial needs.
Reflexology is documented as far back as 2330 BC from hieroglyphics in an Egyptian physician’s tomb. Currently reflexology is being revived as a complimentary modality in the Western world. It can be found in almost all cultures around the world. Reflexology consists uniquely of acupressure to foot, hand and/or ear points, which are viewed as individual microcosms of the body itself.
There are 7,200 nerve endings in each foot. By innervating these points via thumb/finger-walking and deep acupressure (not massage), the body relaxes and yields to achieving homeostasis, an optimum state of balance. Not a “tickle-touch”, reflexology embraces wellness as it melts away stress. Crystals are often noted, as well as reported areas of tenderness, that are believed to be areas of congestion improved with focal acupressure.
Reflexology sessions are routinely for one hour. Absolutely challenging to describe and overwhelmingly conveying a sense of relaxation, sessions consistently become individual experiences of reported well-being amazement.
With a preliminary client history and explanation of what a reflexology session entails, one often is able to experience a “zoning” or “semi-meditative” state of optimum relaxation and de-stressing. Many reflexology loyalists report less pain, improved sleep, decreased anxiety, improved elimination and increased energy to name a few outcomes. Each individual routinely validates an improved state of well-being as they report feet and legs feeling “light” and “so alive.” Most recipients report how wonderful they feel afterwards.
Reflexology is very “user-friendly” and readily complements other non-allopathic modalities, as well as traditional medical protocols. One needs to only be receptive. A reclining zero gravity La Fuma chair is the perfect stage for facilitating a floating reflexology experience. However, reflexology can be effectively performed just about anywhere a professional reflexologist can access a pair of feet or hands. With permission, a session that includes ears can be transforming.
Many chronic illnesses are managed well with traditional medical treatments. Reflexology can enhance these in a supportive, comforting manner. Condition discomforts, as well as measurable treatment side effects such as patient nausea and vomiting from chemotherapy, have often benefited from reflexology support.
Only contraindications for reflexology are skin lesions/rashes and/or blood-clot history. Please advise your professional reflexologist before your session if you have diabetes or are pregnant.
There are professional reflexology associations on state, national (www.reflexology-usa.org), and international (www.icr-reflexology.org) levels, as well as the American Reflexology Certification Board (www. arcb.net) for nationally certified, professional practitioners. Professional reflexologists are certified with a minimum 200+ hours of specific reflexology training and testing on local levels. Additionally, an ARCB Nationally certified reflexologist has another 200+ hours with required national testing. Reflexology instructors are certified by a national certification process at American Commission for Refelxology Education and Training (www.acaret.org).
Reflexology is a wellness transforming, complementary modality well-worth the exploration and investment. Make sure your clinician is certified in reflexology, as session experiences may vastly vary. One may also check with the Baltimore School of Reflexology (www.baltimoreschoolofreflexology.com) for locally certified reflexologists in your area.