Friday, July 22, 2016

The Bad Habit Apartment Dwellers Are More Likely To Have

Apartment residents are more likely to smoke and to be exposed to second hand smoke at home, compared with those who live in single-family homes.

That's according to researchers from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) who found that “apartment residents are more likely to smoke and less likely to have smoke-free rules than people living in single-family homes.”

CDC researchers looked at data from the 2013-1014 National Adult Tobacco Survey, and determined that 20% of adult apartment and condo residents smoked, compared to 14% of single-family home adults

And, only 81% of multi-unit homes had smoke-free rules, compared with 87% of single-family homes

Smoke-free rules can protect against the dangers of second hand smoke.  

It is important for "all people" to be protected by smoke-free policies, says Dr. Corinne Graffunder, director of CDC’s Office on Smoking and Health.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

8 "Must Do" Vacation Tips

Vacation spoilers:  icky hotel room, bad weather, and a toothache!
While you can't control the weather, and may have to suffer through a bad room, the American Dental Association (ADA) offers tips to ensure healthy teeth before and during your getaway.

See your dentist for a check up before you leave. 
Store your dentist's contact info in your cell phone or pack a business card. Dental emergencies can often be resolved over the phone. 
Brush with bottled water if you're worried about tap water.   
Chew ADA-approved sugarless gum, which can help relieve ear pressure during a flight and help prevent cavities (when chewed for 20 minutes after a meal). 
Contact the local consulate or U.S. Embassy if you're overseas and have a dental problem. They can point you in the right direction for healthcare. 
Once home, get back on a healthy track!  Don't sweat it if you didn't brush or floss as often on vacation, or ate a lot of sugary foods.  
Want more information?  Talk with the staff of Wilmette Dental.  They can help help ensure a dental-emergency-free vacation.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

The Surprising Reason You're Eating More Calories
Artificial sweeteners may be sabotaging your efforts to lose weight. At least they do among fruit flies.

A new study (University of Sydney) published in Cell Metabolism found that fruit flies “ate 30% more calories when their food was artificially sweetened than when it was naturally sweetened.” 

A similar result was also found when the experiment was replicated with mice. 

Study author Greg Neely explains, “After chronic exposure to a diet that contained the artificial sweetener sucralose, we saw that animals began eating a lot more. Through systematic investigation of this effect, we found that inside the brain’s reward centers, sweet sensation is integrated with energy content. When sweetness versus energy is out of balance for a period of time, the brain recalibrates and increases total calories consumed.”

Have questions about sugar, its effect on teeth and on overall diet?  Talk with the staff of Wilmette Dental

Thursday, July 14, 2016

The Pesky Childhood Habit That May Improve Health

Nail biting and thumb sucking might actually be good for a child's health.
A new study, published in Pediatrics, reveals that children who bite their nails and suck their thumbs are about one-third less likely to develop certain allergies. 
“Cat, grass, house dust mite, and dog [allergies] – those were reduced, some significantly, some borderline,” said study author Malcolm Sears, a researcher for the Firestone Institute for Respiratory Health at McMaster University School of Medicine, in Ontario, Canada. 
“When they suck their thumbs or bite their nails they’re exposing themselves to additional microbes or dirt which is stimulating the immune system.” 
Of course, the American Dental Association advises that while thumb- or finger-sucking is a natural reflex in young children, intense sucking can cause problems with a child’s tooth alignment.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016


Toothpaste may actually be a household's best friend -- but not just for oral health.  

Photo from
Bee Sting Remedy -- Applied to the affected area, toothpaste neutralizes and dries out the venom.

Blemish Treatment -- Mint-flavored toothpaste is a great overnight remedy for an unsightly blemish. The mint (such as spearmint and menthol) acts as a drying agent and drains the pimple. (But overusing toothpaste can seriously dry skin.  And, toothpaste has not been dermatologically tested.). 

Polishing Silver and Chrome -- Spread on toothpaste with a brush, wait 10 minutes, and polish away.  The abrasives in the toothpaste  clean and exfoliate metals, leaving them looking like new.

Restoring Your Headlights -- To eliminate the grimy buildup on car headlights, scrub on toothpaste and wipe clean.  Voila!  Shiny headlights.

Removing Crayons/Permanent Markers -- Rub on a dab of toothpaste in a circular motion and wipe with a cloth to erase wall "artwork."  (However, test a small area first to make sure the paste doesn't damage walls.)

Eliminating Garlic/Onion Odors from Hands -- Chopping onions or garlic?  To remove those odors, simply wash your hands with toothpaste.

Cleaning Fabric and Carpet Stains -- Toothpaste is great at eliminating red wine, lipstick and ink stains.  Work a little paste into the fabric or carpet, wait 10 minutes and rinse.  Repeat until the stain disappears.

Plastering Tiny Holes in the Walls  -- Fill small nail holes in white walls with a dab of toothpaste and smooth.  The toothpaste will solidify and your white walls will look perfect.

Ordinary toothpaste...who knew?  But, if you'd like to know more about how toothpaste can help your oral health, visit

Tuesday, July 12, 2016


Flavored e-cigarettes are wreaking havoc on teens.  A study just released in the Journal of Pediatrics finds that “many teenagers who never would have smoked cigarettes are now ‘vaping’ flavored e-cigarettes, leading to a new generation using nicotine at rates not seen since the 1990s.”

According to University of Southern California researchers, “the rate of teenagers using nicotine — either through tobacco cigarettes or e-cigarettes — is on the rise” at 14%, which is the highest it has been since 1995.

Electronic cigarettes (e-cigs) have experienced a meteoric rise in sales since first entering the US market in 2007.  E-cigs are electrical devices that vaporize propylene or polyethylene glycol–based liquid solution into an aerosol mist containing various concentrations of nicotine. 

E-How damaging are e-cigs?  The medical community is only beginning understand the lifelong effects of nicotine on the developing brains of teenagers. The problem is nicotine, and according to the American Lung Association:
Nicotine is an addictive substance, and almost all e-cigarettes contain nicotine. Nicotine is not safe. The U.S. Surgeon General has found that it has a negative impact on adolescent brain development. Human brain development continues far longer than was previously realized, and nicotine use during adolescence and young adulthood has been associated with lasting cognitive and behavioral impairments, including effects on working memory and attention.
Currently, e-cigs are almost entirely unregulated on the US market. There are no product standards to control levels of dosing, contaminants, toxins, or carcinogens in the liquid used in e-cigs or the aerosols they produce. And, because e-cigs are neither cigarettes nor smokeless tobacco, they are not subject to advertising bans on electronic media, as are other tobacco products.

"Vape" shops are big business.  Revenues from e-cig sales are expected to reach $10 billion by 2017.  The majority of e-cig users are young people.  According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the prevalence of use of e-cigs increased 9-fold—from 1.5% to 13.4%—among high school students between 2011 and 2014, and now exceeds the use of conventional cigarettes (9.2%).