Women’s Dental Issues

Womens Issues

Throughout a woman’s life, hormonal changes affect tissue throughout the body. Fluctuations in levels occur during puberty, pregnancy and menopause. At these times, the chance of periodontal disease may increase, requiring special care of your oral health. Please visit, www.perio.org


Changes in the look and feel of your mouth may occur if you are menopausal or post-menopausal. They include feeling pain and burning in your gum tissue and salty, peppery or sour tastes.  Careful oral hygiene at home and professional cleaning may relieve these symptoms.

Should you notice dry mouth, please consult your dentist or periodontist. Dry mouth can lead to decay and periodontal disease. There are also saliva substitutes to treat the effects of “dry mouth”. Please visit, www.perio.org


Similar symptoms occasionally appear several days before menstruation. There can be bleeding of the gums, bright red swelling between the teeth and gum, or sores on the inside of the cheek. The symptoms clear up once the period has started. As the amount of hormones decrease, so do these problems. Please visit, www.perio.org


During puberty, there is an increased production of hormones.  These higher levels increase gum sensitivity and lead to greater irritations from plaque and food particles. The gums can become swollen, turn red and feel tender. Overtime, with poor plaque control, chronic periodontal disease can develop. Please visit, www.perio.org


Your gums and teeth are also affected during pregnancy.  Between the second and eighth month, your gums may also swell, bleed and become red or tender. Large lumps may appear as a reaction to local irritants. However, these growths are generally painless and non-cancerous. They may require professional removal, but usually disappear after pregnancy. Periodontal health should be part of your prenatal care. Any infections during pregnancy, including periodontal infections, can place a baby’s health at risk.

The best way to prevent periodonal infections is to begin with healthy gums and continue to maintain your oral health with proper home care and careful professional monitoring. In some situations, more frequent cleaning may be needed. Please visit, www.perio.org

Oral Contraceptives

Swelling, bleeding and tenderness of the gums may also occur when you are taking oral contraceptives, which are synthetic hormones. You must mention any prescriptions you are taking, including oral contraceptives, prior to medical or dental treatment.  This will help eliminate risk of drug interactions, such as antibiotics with oral contraceptives – where the effectiveness of the contraceptive can be lessened. Please visit, www.perio.org


Osteoporosis is a medical condition in which bones are thin and weakened. Researchers have suggested a link between osteoporosis and tooth loss do to decreases in bone density.  Thus, the prevention of inflammatory periodontal disease is important if you are prone to osteoporosis. Please visit, www. nof.org.

Patrick J. Morris DDS MS


Women: Tips for Handling Holiday Stress

If you’re “dashing through the snow” this holiday season, chances are you’re experiencing stress — especially if you’re a woman. Women are vulnerable to stress due to:

  • Socialization. Women are taught to nurture others and spend less time caring for themselves. They often feel guilty saying “no.”
  • Too many hats. About 70 percent of married women with children under 18 work also outside the home. Struggling to meet the “male standard” at work and the “perfect wife and mother” standard at home is a recipe for stress.
  • Hormones. Premenstrual, post-partum and menopausal hormone changes make women more biologically vulnerable than men to stress and depression.

Even positive change causes stress

Stress is normal; it’s a physiological or emotional response to stimuli.“It is how we react and handle demands placed on our body,” explains Lauren Weber, DO, of Cleveland Clinic’s Center for Specialized Women’s Health. “Even positive life events, like a new baby or a job promotion, trigger stress because they cause so much change and create new demands in our lives.”

The triggers of stress are different for everyone but the effects are similar, and include:

  • Negative thinking and depression
  • Trouble concentrating and making decisions
  • Feeling overwhelmed
  • Anger and hostility
  • Frequent mood swings
  • Excessive smoking or eating

Tactics for managing stress

Stress isn’t all bad. It can be motivating if you learn to manage it. According to Dr. Weber, the first step is identifying the cause of stress to see if you can eliminate it. If not, you can experiment with one of these coping strategies:

  • Writing thoughts and feelings in a journal
  • Crafting, gardening, or another hobby you enjoy
  • Playing with pets
  • Exercise, dancing or yoga
  • Meditating
  • Taking leisurely baths
  • Talking to friends
  • Listening to or playing music
  • Joining a choir or book club

Carving out daily “me time” for an activity that soothes you is essential during periods of stress. You may find yourself relaxing and forgetting your troubles, even for a short period of time. Dr. Weber also suggests a practical stress-prevention tip: “Make sure you leave plenty of time to get somewhere so you are not late.”

Making a list and checking it twice

Making lists is another way to make hectic times like holidays manageable. Write down everything you need to do, and cross tasks off as you complete them. You’ll see how much you’ve achieved, and just what still needs doing. And don’t be afraid to assign a few tasks to someone else — it’s OK to ask for help.

In striving to relieve your stress, avoid these common temptations:

  • Drinking excessive alcohol
  • Using drugs
  • Driving recklessly
  • Overspending

They will only compound your stress in the future. Even drinking too much caffeine — including energy drinks — can worsen  stress. So can the resulting lack of sleep!

Talk to your doctor

If you find your stress completely unmanageable, talk to your physician. Your doctor may recommend medication, acupuncture or massage therapy, or refer you to a therapist to work through larger issues.

Meanwhile, don’t sentence yourself to a stress-filled existence. Take steps to reduce your stress so that you can get back to “making spirits bright” for the holidays.

By , Family Health | Women’s Health

Having It All Means Different Things to Different People

A couple of weeks ago, at the Aspen Ideas Festival, PepsiCo CEO, Indra Nooyi, gave an interview to The Atlantic in which she said women cannot have it all.

The article’s title, “Why PepsiCo CEO Indra K. Nooyi Can’t Have it All” is a little misleading in that she talks about how grounded her mother makes her and how it still takes a village to raise a child … just that today’s village looks a little bit different.

But it got everyone up in arms, including Kim Kardashian who very clearly is an expert on having it all.

What she said is not that women can’t have it all, but that we make choices every day. Am I going to be a wife or mother today or am I going to be a business leader?

The answer, of course, depends on what’s happening in both places. Do you have a really sick child at home? Then today you choose to be a mother. Do you have a really big meeting at work? Then today you choose to be a business leader.

Go Get the Milk

Sometimes that choice is made for you.

She tells the story of how, when 14 years ago she was told she was being promoted to president on the board of directors.

She left work early (10:00 p.m. versus midnight – wow) and went home to share the exciting news with her mom. When she arrived at home, her mom was waiting at the top of the stairs and told her they were out of milk and she needed to go back out and get some.

She ran through the litany of people who could have gone to get the milk – her husband, the nanny, her mom – but her mom was adamant.

So she went and got the milk.

I banged it on the counter and I said, “I had great news for you. I’ve just been told that I’m going to be president on the Board of Directors. And all that you want me to do is go out and get the milk, what kind of a mom are you?” And she said to me, “let me explain something to you. You might be president of PepsiCo. You might be on the board of directors. But when you enter this house, you’re the wife, you’re the daughter, you’re the daughter-in-law, you’re the mother. You’re all of that. Nobody else can take that place. So leave that damned crown in the garage. And don’t bring it into the house. You know I’ve never seen that crown.”

Having it all, at that moment, meant she sure did get a fantastic promotion and was making huge strides at work, but their household needed milk for the next morning so she had to be the mom.

It Takes a Village

The other story she relayed during the interview was that of her kids who liked to call work constantly after school.

She coached her assistant to help ask the right questions before the children were allowed to do what they were calling to ask to do.

Train people at work. Train your family to be your extended family. You know what? When I’m in PepsiCo I travel a lot, and when my kids were tiny, especially my second one, we had strict rules on playing Nintendo. She’d call the office, and she didn’t care if I was in China, Japan, India, wherever. She’d call the office, the receptionist would pick up the phone, “Can I speak to my mommy?” Everybody knows if somebody says, ‘Can I speak to mommy?’ It’s my daughter. So she’d say, “Yes, Tyra, what can I do for you?”

“I want to play Nintendo.”

So she has a set of questions. “Have you finished your homework?” Etc. I say this because that’s what it takes. She goes through the questions and she says, “Okay, you can play Nintendo half an hour.” Then she leaves me a message. “Tyra called at 5. This is the sequence of questions I went through. I’ve given her permission.” So it’s seamless parenting.

Today your village is made up of your neighbors, your colleagues, your friends, your family (if you’re lucky enough to have them live nearby), and parents from school.

And that’s okay. It still takes a village to raise a child. Give yourself permission to build that village how you see fit.

Women and Having it All

What this comes down to is having the choice.

What “having it all” means to me is completely different than what it means to you and completely different than what it means to your sister or your cousin or your niece or your colleague or your friends.

My sister is six years younger than me. She got married very young and immediately started having babies. She has four kids that range from 12 to four years old.

She stayed home with them for 12 years and just went back to work a couple of months ago.

She will tell you that she’s exhausted and she’s worried and she’s stressed, but she’s happy and doing her version of having it all.

She also will tell you how angry it makes her that her neighbor across the street can build the perfect snowmen that look like every person in her family and she can barely get outside with the kids to build a snowman that looks like a snowman.

Namanny Snowman

(This is the snowman we built with my nieces and nephews during Christmas this past year.)

Who cares? Who cares that some moms make their own organic food and you call delivery? Who cares that some moms dry their baby bottles on grass and you air dry yours? Who cares that some moms have perfectly themed birthday parties, right down to the place cards and you throw together some balloons, hot dogs, Cheetos, and red kool-aid (which, by-the-way, was one of my favorite birthday meals as a kid)?

You get to decide what having it all means.

A friend of mine says, “Give yourself permission to define your own having it all and live it.”

Don’t worry about what Kim Kardashian or Indra Nooyi or Sheryl Sanberg or Madeleine Albright or your neighbor or your parents or your siblings or your friends say.

You get to decide. Just you.

By Gini Dietrich/In AllBusiness.com Articles 

Let’s Talk About Alzheimer’s – by Linda Fisher

Before Alzheimer’s came into my life, I considered it to be an equal opportunity disease affecting males and females the same way. During my years of involvement, I began to realize that Alzheimer’s had a bigger impact on women than on men.


The 2014 Alzheimer’s Disease Facts and Figures includes a “Special Report: Women and Alzheimer’s Disease.”  This report highlights several studies that bear witness to the higher burden the disease has on women.


Out of all Americans with Alzheimer’s, two-thirds are women. Why? The most obvious factor is age. Women have longer lifespans and are more likely to reach the age of highest risk. Women are more concerned than men about developing Alzheimer’s, and with good reason. A sixty-five year old woman has a 20 percent lifetime risk of developing dementia during her lifetime. I don’t know about you, but I’m not happy with those odds.


I admit that before Jim developed dementia, I never gave much consideration to how unfair Alzheimer’s is to the person with the disease and the caregiver. I had no concept of the breadth and scope of the disease—how all consuming it can be.


Being a caregiver for my husband was never a part of my vision of our life together. Jim never seemed like the type of person who would ever be anything but decisive, a man of strong convictions, protective, creative, and loving. Never in my wildest imagination could I have envisioned the turn our lives would take when he developed dementia. And certainly, if an Alzheimer’s type of dementia had ever entered my mind, I would have thought of him as an elderly man, not one who wouldn’t live to see his sixtieth birthday.


The job of caregiver falls more often on women. They are two and a half times more likely than men to be that caregiver who provides the around the clock care for a loved one who is in the late stages of the disease. These female caregivers are made up of daughters, wives, siblings, friends, and in younger onset—mothers. In a study of caregivers, indications are that females are substantially more likely than males to provide intimate personal care for their loved one with Alzheimer’s. Just like me, other women caregivers take on bathing, dressing, toileting, and changing adult diapers.


Caring for a loved one is hard work and stressful. Women report a higher level of emotional stress than men (62 percent vs. 52 percent) and greater physical stress (47 percent vs. 24 percent).


Women’s employment is affected adversely by caregiving. Twice as many women as men give up employment entirely to be caregivers. Seven times as many women as men go from working full-time to part-time in order to be a caregiver.


I was in my forties when Jim developed dementia and worked full-time. Quitting work wasn’t an option for me. There were times when the challenges of juggling a job and caregiving seemed overwhelming. Jim didn’t require but about four hours of sleep at night and that meant that I often went to work sleep deprived and emotionally drained. When I hired caregivers to come into my home, they would often arrive late, or call at the last minute that they couldn’t come. Because they were undependable, it made me, as an employee, feel undependable too. Fortunately, my employer allowed me the flexibility I needed to work around caregiving issues. They knew that from time-to-time I would receive a phone call and have to go home to tend to the latest challenge—wandering, refusing to let someone else do something for him, or just to comfort him when he was scared or depressed.


I was young compared to most women who are caring for spouses with Alzheimer’s. When I found myself feeling defeated, I couldn’t help but wonder how elderly ladies could manage to be a full-time caregiver.


Think about it—as a woman you are more likely to be a caregiver for a loved one with Alzheimer’s, and then, after years of caregiving, you are more likely to develop the disease. We women have a large stake in ending Alzheimer’s. Our brains matter to us, and we want to keep them healthy throughout our lifetimes. We need to join together as women, as caring people, as advocates to end Alzheimer’s now.


copyright © March 2014 by L.S. Fisher


Let’s Face It: Your Career Development Is in Your Hands

The front cover of Philadelphia Magazine’s November issue screamed, “We Are All Entrepreneurs Now.”  I’ve also heard this concept referred to as YoYo Land (You’re on Your Own).

As we take steps to achieve success in our chosen careers, we sometimes search for mentors as well as role models. We quickly realize that many celebrated individuals who have been catapulted onto the world stage arrived there, not only as a result of hard work, but also after being closely mentored. In the past, men have been dominant in, but not limited to, business, entertainment, sports and politics. They arrived at the top of their game often times, as a result of not only of their hard work, but because they had someone in their life who gave them sorely needed direction.

While mentoring has always been available in some small way to women, today the availability of role models and mentors is without limit. There is no excuse for any career person (male or female) to plod on without guidance or mentoring. All we need do is look about for those successful women who can attest to the power of effective mentoring: Oprah, Angela Merkel, Barbara Walters, Hillary Clinton, Condi Rice, Megyn Kelly, Golda Maier, Serena and Venus Williams, to mention a few.

In 2008, Helen Harkness wrote about the term mentoring in an article where she claimed that we are all working in a world where we are on our own (YoYo Land). If you wait around for someone to drop out of the blue to mentor and coach you in the management of your career, it’s just not going to happen. You are probably thinking, yes, this sounds really interesting, but I don’t have the time nor do I know how to obtain a mentor. That may be the case. But, if you want your career to progress rather than stagnate or come to an end, you will find the time and learn how to find one. The first step is to take a chance and reach out to someone who might have good career advice relating to your goals.

Due to an anemic economy, the current job market appears to be dismal, and, according to some economists, will continue to remain unchanged for a long period of time. What does this tell you? It means that in order to remain competitive and to move forward in your field, you will have to develop multiple strategies with close confidants and professionals and engage in networking with associates and friends to help you move your career in the direction of career satisfaction.

Long gone are the days of a traditional career ladder. Instead of climbing up the ladder, the new strategy effecting career progression is identified as a career lattice rather than a career ladder. Joanne Cleaver, author of The Career Lattice, defines it as “a diagonal framework that braids lateral experiences, adjacent skill acquisition and peer networking to move employees to any of a variety of positions for which they have become qualified.”

Ms. Cleaver believes that one’s ability to “lattice” across, up and down different positions will be a critical skill in the years to come. I believe this author’s rationale is spot on because this is the wave of the future. This strategy is transdisciplinary, being defined as “the ability to integrate different sets of knowledge and fluency across multiple disciplines.”

You have heard the adage “jack of all trades, master of none” which may have provided work for Jack but really never did much for his career. The time, however, is approaching — if not already here — when “master of all disciplines” will be the requisite for a successful career. Employers, in an effort to trim budgets, will hire the multi-tasker capable of combining his/her education, expertise, and work experiences to meet the varying demands of the position.  The ability to effectively weave these various assets into an “am qualified, can do all, will do all” offering to a prospective employer will ensure success on a continuing basis.

Clearly, assuming ownership of your career is an absolute necessity. YoYo Land is here to stay, so accepting that you need to manage your career will undoubtedly give you a better shot at advancing in one of the most competitive climates we’ve ever seen.

By | In AllBusiness.com Articles