Friday, August 31, 2012

Ouch! What to do if your child gets a tooth knocked out

Summertime can be one of the most fun and active seasons for your child, but it can also be one of the most dangerous seasons when it comes to dental injuries. It is not uncommon for children to fall off a bike or get injured during a sport and realize they have lost a tooth. If this happens, don’t panic. Teeth can be saved in most cases when an adult can quickly jump into action.

First, though, check two things: make sure your child does not have any other serious injuries that may require an ambulance, and determine if the tooth that was knocked out was a baby tooth or an adult tooth. If the tooth was a baby tooth, don’t worry about finding the tooth or getting it placed back into the mouth. It is still a good idea to see the dentist to make sure no other damage was done, but it is not vital to save the tooth when an adult tooth will soon be erupting anyway.

If, however, it was an adult tooth, there are several things you can do to preserve the tooth and increase the chances of it being successfully replanted into the mouth. Just remember that the faster you locate the tooth and get your child to the dentist, the more likely it is that the tooth can be saved. If a tooth is knocked out:
  • Do not let the tooth dry out, and do not soak it in water. If the tooth is dirty, put it in milk immediately.
  • Do not scrape or touch the root surface.
  • After making sure the tooth is clean, put it back into the socket and hold it in place on the way to the dentist. If it cannot be put back into the socket, keep it in a glass of milk to prevent it from drying out.
  • Go straight to your True Care Advantage dentist or a hospital immediately. During treatment, a dentist will give your child a “splint” to keep the tooth in place while it heals.
It is important to remember that knocked-out teeth can often be prevented by reminding your child to wear a mouth guard during recreational and sporting activities. Teeth are surprisingly easy to damage, so it’s always better to be overly cautious and protect your child’s beautiful smile.

Labels: , , , , , , ,

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Are you wearing contacts safely?

It’s easy to forget that contact lenses and solutions are considered medical devices by the FDA, leading many people to become lax about caring for their contacts. In reality, keeping your contacts clean is one of the most important things you can do for your eye health. The American Optometric Association recommends contact-wearers protect their eyes by using good hygiene practices including:
  • Wash and dry hands before touching contact lenses • Rub lenses with fingers and rinse thoroughly before soaking the lenses overnight
  • Clean the lens case after every use, and make sure it stays dry and aired out in between uses. Cases should be replaced every three months or so.
  • Do not reuse old solution to clean your lenses, and don’t use saline solutions in place of a solution recommended by your eye doctor.
  • Take out your contacts before swimming
See an eye doctor on your True Care Advantage plan regularly for an eye examination so he can re-evaluate your vision and prescription.

Labels: , , , , ,

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Growing up with hearing loss

Children with hearing loss frequently experience special difficulties in their social and academic development, particularly children who lost their hearing early in life. According to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, the academic gap between children with hearing loss and other children widens as school becomes more difficult and advanced. It is imperative that parents employ the help of an intervention professional to set their child up for success.

A specialist can work on a child’s academic and social development, the latter being key because many children with hearing loss feel isolated from their peers, especially if the child does not know many other children with hearing loss. The good news is that research shows children with hearing loss who get help very early in life can develop language skills at the same level as their peers. The important thing is to start seeing a specialist as soon as possible and involve the entire family in the program. Talk to your True Care Advantage hearing plan audiologist to find out more information on child hearing loss – timing is critical.

Labels: , , ,

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Solutions for hearing loss around the home

Most of us take for granted that we can talk to someone over the phone and open the door when we hear the door bell chime. But for people with hearing loss, these tasks are not so simple. Fortunately, technology has now made it possible for hard-of-hearing people to “hear” the door bell and other alerts in the home, as well as carry on a conversation over the phone. For instance, telephone amplifiers can be coupled with a person’s hearing aid to improve the person’s ability to hear a caller.

For people who still cannot hear well enough for a conversation, they can use Voice Carry Over, which is used with a telephone relay service. In these cases, the operator translates what the other person is saying by converting their words to text on a screen. When it comes to “hearing” the door bell, people can install systems that pick up the signal and cause lights to flash, fans to spin, or a small device to vibrate. The same goes for sleeping alarms, fire alarms, and more. Talk to your True Care Advantage hearing plan specialist about the best options for your home to find out more information.

Labels: , ,

Monday, August 27, 2012

Connection between gum disease and heart disease

It’s long been suspected that poor gum health can contribute to heart disease, and a new study in the Journal of Periodontology has found more evidence to support this theory. The study focused on the inflammatory nature of both conditions, explaining that chronic inflammation can lead to dysfunction of the affected tissues and severe complications. It was suggested that as one of the conditions worsens, the other is exacerbated as well. Researchers recommend that periodontists and cardiologists collaborate to increase awareness of the connection among their patients.

To do this, periodontists may speak out more frequently about the effects of gum disease on heart health, while cardiologists may inspect a patient’s mouth for basic signs of gum disease as part of their examination. To find out more about your own gum health, talk to a dentist on your True Care Advantage dental plan and ask about the connection between your gums and heart. Improving one could mean improving your total overall health.

Labels: , , , , ,

Friday, August 24, 2012

Information for Vision after 40

Even if you never wore glasses as a child or young adult, it’s important to be aware of changes in your vision once you reach age 40. According to the American Optometric Association, there are five common vision changes you may experience in middle age, including:
  • Changes in color perception: The lens within your eye, which is normally clear, may start to discolor and make it difficult for you to differentiate between shades of colors.
  • Problems with glare: Driving may become more difficult as glare from headlights or the sun becomes more noticeable. This increase in glare is a result of light being scattered on the retina instead of being properly focused.
  • Reduced tears: Tear glands tend to produce fewer tears as you age. Post-menopausal women may notice that their eyes are especially dry and should talk to their True Care Advantage optometrist about solutions like medicated eye drops.
  • Needing more light: You may have noticed it is not as easy to read in dim lighting as it once was. Solve this issue by using bright lamps while reading or working.
  • Difficulty reading or working up close: The lens in the eye starts to become more flexible as you age, making it harder for your eyes to focus on nearby objects.
This can cause books or documents to appear blurry at close distances, so ask your True Care eye doctor about getting reading glasses as well as an overall vision exam.

Labels: , , , ,