Thursday, March 17, 2016

Going Under

Sometimes, people get nervous about visiting the dentist. Taking care of your teeth is important to prevent gum disease, plaque and gingivitis. Lots of us get cavities all the time, one day a cavity or two is discovered and already the dentist is in the dreaded distant future. Anesthetic dentistry can help make these daunting dental procedures go easier than ever before. 

While under the influence of anesthesia, patients stay in a relaxed state a lot like being asleep. Once a person gets past the anxiety and nervousness that sometimes accompanies dental visits, they can then brag that they took the operation like a champ. To name a few types of anesthesia there are oral sedatives, intravenously administrated drugs and nitrous oxide gassing.

To begin discussing these various sedatives, oral sedatives are medications typically taken in pill form. Oral sedatives include drugs like xanax, morphine and hydrocodone. Intreveineously administered sedatives include substances such as genuine anesthesia, fentanyl, and opiod blocking medications for reversing the opiates used. Lastly, nitrous oxide is a type of gas that is administered in the form of a gas mask. In short, the effects of nitrous oxide include giddyness and a general sense of not knowing what is going on. 

There are degrees of sedation; light sedation, conscious sedation, deep sedation and unconscious sedation. Depending on your dental procedure and how well you explain whats going on with the doctor, your dentist will determine which sedation method is the most appropriate. It is important to talk with your dentist about everything pertaining to the situation so that he or she can provide the best sedation method for you.

With the help of sedation, it is possible that you can feel calm and relaxed during the entire dental office visit. Once a person has a relaxed state of mind, he or she can go through the dental procedures with lowered stress levels that they otherwise would have had. Most notably, anesthesia  gives your dentist an opportunity to do the necessary required dental procedures so that you can get your smile back and move on with life. 

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Benefits Of Calcium

Did you know that you have more calcium in your body than any other mineral? Stored primarily in the bones and teeth, calcium is a mineral found in many foods that is necessary for life and for the proper functioning of the body. At one point or another, we have probably all heard that calcium is important for maintaining strong, healthy bones. In addition to this, it has other important benefits and functions such as helping us move our muscles, and helping blood clot and move throughout the body through our blood vessels.

As with most things in the body, calcium does not work alone. It requires the assistance of other minerals for its absorption. Vitamin D is one of these minerals. In fact, vitamin D forms a hormone called calcitrol and absorbs calcium from the stomach. Without enough vitamin D, the body draws calcium from other parts of the body. Some of these other parts of the body such as the bones become weaker over time in deficient of this essential vitamin. Vitamin D can be consumed through supplements, certain foods such as salmon, tuna, and cheese, as well as natural sunlight.

Another important element in the absorption process is magnesium. Magnesium, which also appears in significant levels in the body, is essential for the absorption of vitamin D and calcium. The presence of magnesium triggers the development of a hormone called calcitonin which proves to be essential to the strength and growth of bones by transferring calcium from blood and soft tissue to the bones. This process has its own benefits such as preventing osteoporosis and kidney stones. It then stimulates a chain reaction by converting vitamin D to its active form, calcitrol, which then helps calcium absorption. Aside from vitamin D and magnesium, vitamin C, vitamin E, vitamin K, and boron are all minerals that also assist in the absorption of calcium in similar ways.

Calcium can be found in a number of foods, many of which you may already consume in your diet on a daily basis. Some of these include:
  • Milk, yogurt, and cheese (the most common sources)
  • Leafy greens (kale, spinach, broccoli, cabbage)
  • Legumes, nuts, and seeds

The best way to consume calcium is by eating a balanced diet with plenty of calcium-rich vegetables. If you are still lacking an adequate amount of calcium, you can take vitamin supplements to make up for the deficiency. However, it is important to know that as with too much of anything, excessive supplemental calcium can have adverse effects on the body. There is a long-standing debate over whether calcium is better consumed naturally in food or through supplements. Although the argument doesn't seem to be conclusive, the general consensus is that overall, it is safer and more effective to consume calcium primarily thorough a healthy, balanced diet.