Health & Wellness
When They’re Healthy, You’re Healthy
Having practiced dentistry for over 40 years, I’ve seen lots of patients and lots of changes in dentistry, from materials to techniques.
In those 40 years there’s been one constant, and that is the importance of having your own teeth – for nutrition, health, and appearance. My appearances on Cleveland WKYC ‘s “Golden Opportunities” TV show has helped me promote dental care for those of us over 50.
It’s clear that our teeth allow us to chew food and to consume necessary nutrients. When patients lose teeth and replace them with dentures (either partial or full), they often remark that they don’t enjoy their food like they used to, or they mention that they have digestive problems, which are often linked to an inability to properly break up or grind food.
Dentures anchored by implants improve stability but they still don’t have the chewing strength that natural teeth provide. Plus, food often gets caught under the denture. Today’s partials – often metal-free – look relatively natural, feel tight and are better adapted for chewing, but they still require removal to keep clean.
Implants with single teeth screwed or cemented on can help with chewing and can feel like “they’re my own teeth” but present other complications, including difficulty with cleaning and maintenance.
Studies associate oral health to overall health. This includes a strong relationship between periodontal health and heart health.
Oral hygiene – including brushing and flossing after meals to remove food particles that mouth bacteria feed off of – helps maintain teeth and the surrounding bone and tissue. Gum/periodontal disease allow the proliferation of bacteria, often leading to infection that may move to other parts of the body. Some research supports the use of a baking soda/peroxide incorporated into toothpaste to help fight the disease and, in fact, is something that we suggest to our own patients....
Treatment Tips to Get Back on Your Feet
I twisted my ankle while hiking in the Metroparks. What are the signs of a sprain and how do I treat it?
A typical ankle sprain has tenderness over the injured area, swelling and bruising. After the injury, most patients can walk on the affected foot. However, if you cannot put any weight on your foot because of severe pain, you may not have an ankle sprain but a fracture to one of the bones that makes up the ankle joint. If this is the case, you may need an X-ray of the ankle to look at the anatomy and to determine if there is a fracture.
There are three types of ankle sprains: medial, lateral and syndesmotic “high.” The most common type of sprain affects the lateral ligaments, and the most common ligament to be sprained is the anterior talofibular ligament. This type of injury is usually due to an inversion motion to the ankle and foot — the twisting movement of the foot inward.
Treatment options for an ankle sprain include ice, compression, anti-inflammatory medications, elevation and support bracing. Severe ankle sprains may require a walking boot and crutches. Other treatment options can consist of platelet-rich-plasma injections or prolotherapy to help heal the injured ligament. Rehabilitation from an ankle sprain consists of range-of-motion, strengthening and balancing exercises.
If pain from the injury becomes unmanageable, many believe they need to go to the emergency room. But the ER is primarily designed to serve life-threatening emergencies. An urgent care center may be able to help you, but you will likely be seen by a generalist — not an orthopedic specialist. In both cases, you will walk out with a referral to have a second appointment with a specialist....
Better Relationships & a Better Life
By Kathy McGowan
“What was that?”
Hearing loss can become a heavy, uncomfortable burden causing awkward social encounters and ultimately alienating family and friends.
How many times do we repeat ourselves before we say, “Forget it,” and walk away? Or worse, we don’t bother to start a conversation because it takes too much effort.
The listener feels left out and ignored, resulting in hurt feelings and isolation.
Hearing loss harms our personal and professional relationships. Relationships require communication — the exchange of information and ideas between people — to be successful. Hearing loss breaks that connection.
The divorce rate among the hard of hearing is four times higher than the general population. A study of more than 1,000 people over age 40 with hearing loss shows how hearing issues can damage relationships.
More than 33 percent of those who responded admitted that misunderstandings from not hearing properly contributed significantly to arguments with family members.
Nearly two-thirds confessed to pretending to understand spoken dialogue and then floundering their way through conversations. Hearing loss can add stress to relationships, resulting in feelings of failure, anxiety and separation, and overall poor health.
Stay connected to your loved ones and avoid the effects of hearing loss. Have your hearing tested yearly, and if a loss is identified, take care of it.
Those who have their hearing loss corrected — either medically or with hearing aids — report less stress, improved relationships and a better quality of life.
Kathy McGowan is a doctor of audiology with Beltone Hearing and has been helping people hear better for 27 years. She is very excited about the great new technology available for hearing help. For a free hearing evaluation, go to Beltone.com or call 234-400-0201....
Ask the Orthopedist
By REUBEN GOBEZIE, MD
Is it possible to have shoulder replacement surgery as an outpatient procedure?
Yes. Orthopedic surgeons who specialize in shoulder surgery are now providing patients with the outpatient option when it applies to their condition. People love the outpatient experience and recover better when they are at home.
When provided by a specialist, the surgery may only take 35 minutes in a highly controlled environment and results in little blood loss. The less time that you are under anesthesia, the better the recovery. There is less risk of infection, increased patient satisfaction and higher quality outcomes based on function and pain with a home recovery. Patients walk out with their arm in a sling and are home the same day.
In the weeks leading up to surgery, each patient and their caregiver should be provided with educational information and a prescription for physical therapy. For example, our practice offers a series of physical therapy videos that patients study before the surgery and work on at home post-surgery. The videos illustrate the exercises, and the education offers very specific goals that each patient needs to meet to recover faster.
The outpatient surgery and home rehabilitation option saves patients considerable time and money. Most patients are able to use their arm enough to care for themselves within a week after the procedure. After three months of follow-up appointments, the patient no longer requires office visits, but the atrophy from the initial injury could take up to a year to fully improve.
While a large percentage of patients are candidates for outpatient shoulder surgery, it’s not for everyone. Patients with complicated medical histories may not qualify. Each patient should be carefully examined to determine the procedure that will work best for them.
All shoulder conditions should be evaluated by a shoulder specialist with a thorough history and physical examination including imaging studies....
No Kidding — Adults Can Get It, Too
By Paris Wolfe
When Lisa, 55, of Cleveland was treated for ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) this year, she felt like a new person. Her productivity improved, she slept better and life became more manageable.
“I couldn’t believe the difference,” she says. “(Medication) helped me focus instead of bouncing off walls. Before, I would be working on something and be distracted by the next shiny thing that came along. Then, I’d get anxious because I would get behind on the first project.”
That anxiety snowballed and may have caused depression. Once the ADHD was addressed, her depression and problems seemed to melt away.
An Adult Diagnosis
Before a comprehensive five-hour series of tests diagnosed Lisa, she didn’t realize adults could be affected. Like many, she thought ADHD was just for kids.
Not so. ADHD is a persistent pattern of inattention and/or hyperactivity-impulsivity that interferes with functioning or development, according to the National Institute of Mental Health.
Research suggests it persists into adulthood for at least 50 percent of those diagnosed as a child. As many as 10 million adults may be affected.
People in their 50s and 60s fall into those numbers. ADHD didn’t suddenly appear with Generation X. Despite the lack of diagnoses, it has been around for a long time, spanning generations. While causes aren’t definitive, studies attribute ADHD to genetics as well as to smoking and drinking during pregnancy.
Symptoms may be less apparent in the over-50 population because they’ve had longer to learn coping skills and life hacks.
One of the most common ways adults realize they’re affected is during an exam of a child or grandchild.
“They sit in the room with the provider who asks questions about the child, and the adult starts to see the light....
Dr. Daniel Pierre and The Cleveland Eye Clinic Introduce Breakthrough Treatment for Eye Floaters
The Cleveland Eye Clinic has announced the introduction of Laser Floater Removal, a highly effective treatment for floaters. A minimally invasive, in-office procedure, Laser Floater Removal can provide much-needed relief for floaters and potentially delay or obviate the need for vitrectomy surgery. Floaters are small pieces of debris that float in the eye’s vitreous humor (the jelly-like substance in the main chamber of the eye). Often described as cobweb or cloud-like shadows, this debris casts shadows onto the retina (the light sensitive tissue layer at the back of the eye). Almost everyone over the age of 70 has floaters.
Daniel Pierre, M.D., of the Cleveland Eye Clinic, was the first doctor in Ohio to perform Vitreolysis. Dr. Pierre describes the new YAG laser used for Vitreolysis as “the newest generation YAG laser that enables this procedure to be done safely and efficaciously. Previous treatments were more difficult, less safe and less effective.”
Laser Floater Removal employs a specially designed YAG laser to vaporize floaters. During the procedure, the laser emits a short burst of energy lasting only 3 nanoseconds (0.000000003 seconds). Instead of simply breaking the floater into smaller pieces, the laser’s high-power density converts the collagen and hyaluronan molecules within the floater into a gas, which is then resorbed into the eye.
Unlike vitrectomy, which carries a significant risk of bleeding and infection, Laser Floater Removal is minimally invasive and carries a very low risk. Most patients will experience an almost immediate improvement in visual function and are able to return to normal day-to-day activities directly following the procedure. “We are excited to be among one of the first clinics in the United States to offer laser Floater Removal,” says Dr. Pierre.
“Typically, many of my patients describe floaters as ‘strands’ or ‘blobs’ obstructing their line of vision....