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November 2020 Newsletter

What´s New at Savon

Quote Of The Month:   “I´m from Canada, so Thanksgiving to me is just Thursday with more food.”  (Howie Mandel - Canadian TV Personality - 1955-Present)

Congratulations To:

T. Thomas of Congress, Arizona and L. Hughes of Phoenix, Arizona  Winners of our October early payment drawings for 1 free additional year of membership.

Congratulations to our winners and thank you to everyone that entered the drawing.

To Your Health With Jourdin Hendershot:

Outer Ear Infection

The ear consists of three different parts: Outer, Middle, and Inner.  All of these sections work together to provide us with hearing and balance.

When you hear the word “ear infection” you may immediately think of pain inside the ear.  This is correct, but did you know that all three parts of the ear can have their own type of infection?  With that in mind, let us take a closer look at the outer ear.

The outer ear is also known as the pinna and this is made up of cartilage covered by skin.  When sound waves enter the pinna, they travel down a small tube called the external auditory canal until they reach the eardrum. At this point the sound waves enter the middle ear.

An outer ear infection can happen at any time or any age and is usually caused by a bacterial infection, which is often referred to as swimmer´s ear because it is related to moisture problems within the ear.

Below are a few different ways an outer ear infection can begin:
  • Excessive moisture in the ear canal — Constant exposure to water may result in less earwax.  Earwax repels water from the surface of the outer ear canal and keeps the PH level balanced.  So, when there is not enough ear wax, the skin will hold onto the moisture and eventually it will cause irritation.

  • Hearing Aids — Hearing aids tend to promote moisture build up with in the ear canal.

  • Injury or irritation of the canal skin — Scratching the ear canal by using cotton swabs or a foreign object can provide an easy access point for bacteria to start growing.

  • Chronic skin conditions or allergies — Eczema or Psoriasis can provide an easy entry point.  Also, hair dyes and sprays can cause skin irritations.
Signs and symptoms of an outer ear infection can include itching in the ear canal, ear pain, pain to the touch, oozing of puss, or hearing loss.

The infection usually begins at the outer ear but can quickly spread to nearby tissues, including the cartilage and bone causing nerve damage and even facial paralysis if not taken care of in a timely manner.

If you start to experience ear pain or any discomfort, seek medical attention right away.  If your doctor suspects an outer ear infection, they will most likely clean out the ear canal and prescribe some oral antibiotics and ear drops.  They may also advise you to take over–the–counter pain medication and to avoid getting your head wet for 7–10 days.  In approximately 3–4 days you may start to feel normal again.

Never wait it out, by doing this you are putting your health on the line.

If you have questions you would like to discuss with Jourdin, feel free to drop her an email by clicking here.

The above health material is provided as an information service.  It should not be used for diagnostic purposes nor is it intended to take the place of the important relationship between you and your doctor.

Grandma´s Kitchen With Grandma C.:

Easy Pumpkin Mousse Pie

Grandma C.
  1. 1 box (4 oz) instant vanilla pudding mix

  2. 1¼ cups cold whole milk

  3. 1 cup Cool Whip

  4. 1 cup pumpkin puree

  5. 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice

  6. 1 pre–made graham cracker pie crust

Blend your vanilla pudding mix and milk together with a mixer.  Add pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie spice and mix until well blended.  Fold in Cool Whip.

Pour mousse into the pie crust and smooth with a spatula.  Add additional Cool Whip on top and sprinkle with a little bit of pumpkin pie spice for garnish.

Refrigerate until ready to serve.  Recipe serves 8.

Enjoy!  And remember, if it looks and smells good, eat it!!

If you have a recipe that you would like to share with Grandma C., drop her an email by clicking here.


Garrett Family Dental Care

Garrett Family Dental Care
Our spotlight for November goes to the city of Surprise, Arizona and shines on Garrett Family Dental Care for the 5th time since 2013.

“From the front office to the exam room, our practice is made up of professionals who take your oral health very seriously.  Using state–of–the art equipment designed with safety and efficiency in mind, we are able to offer top-notch care.  As you walk through our office, you will notice that everything is clean, comfortable and thoroughly sterilized.  Your safety and comfort are our priority.”

Garrett Family Dental Care has been a preferred provider for Savon since 2005 and takes care of many of our members in the far west valley.  Because of the caring manner in which they treat their patients, many of our members that used to live in Surprise now drive 15 to 20 miles for their dental work because they love Dr. Garrett and the entire staff.

“At our practice, you aren´t just a patient. We take an interest in you and your oral health needs.  We think you´ll find a friend in your dental professional during your visit!”
The practice is located at 15009 W. Bell Rd. Ste 175 - Surprise, AZ 85374.  The phone number is 623-476-8100.  We also invite you to visit them on the web.

Say thank you to your dental office for the excellent manner in which you are treated by nominating your dentist!

Fun Facts:

Crazy, Zany Facts About Black Friday We Bet You Didn´t Know

  • The term “Black Friday” was initially associated with a stock market crash.

  • Black Friday as we know it actually got its start in the 1950s.

  • Today, the average American spends $335 on Thanksgiving weekend.

  • Black Friday is unofficially the best day to buy a TV.

  • In addition to long hours for retail workers, Black Friday is the busiest day of the year for plumbers.

  • Conditions hit a low in 2011, when one woman pepper sprayed 20 people in Walmart.

  • More recently, some popular stores have started boycotting Black Friday.
Come back for more in next months issue!

Dental Talk - A Member Blog Forum:

Come blog with us!  Dental Talk with Savon is a fun forum to post your interesting topics!  Your comments are welcome, it´s free to use and no membership is required.

Some of the topics include;

These are just a few of the topics.  Our blog site contains many other interesting topics.  Please join us!!

Here´s Your Answer

Questions From Our Members

B. Bradbury of Houston, Texas asks: 

“I have a constant ringing in my ears and my PCP suggested that I get examined by a dentist.  What could my teeth have to do with this ringing?”

Savon’s Answer

Although we are not dentists, we did do some research and here´s some of what we found.

The constant ringing in the ear is known as tinnitus.

It has been reported that tooth abscesses or impacted wisdom teeth can cause tinnitus.  In such cases dental treatment may cure the condition.  Other times the tinnitus will gradually fade over time.  One way this can occur is by aggravation of existing Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) dysfunction.  Infection in the tooth or impacted wisdom teeth can cause inflammation that affects the TM joint.

TMJ dysfunction can be treated by dentists who specialize in the condition.  They begin by fitting a mouth guard that aligns the lower jaw with the skull.  When needed, more advanced, non–invasive therapies are developed to relax the muscle tissues.

There have been isolated cases of bilateral sensorineural hearing loss and tinnitus that occurs following dental surgery to remove impacted wisdom teeth.

Another way that tinnitus can be caused is by the prolonged neck bending that occurs during dental surgery.  This is referred to as somatic tinnitus and happens when bodily signals due to muscle strain can influence normal auditory pathways.

Unconsciously clenching the jaw or grinding the teeth is known as bruxism.  This is one of the primary causes of TMJ dysfunction and often leads to tinnitus.  It is a habit, which can be broken, not a reflex chewing activity.  It can originally be caused by a number of conditions including allergy, trauma or high stress.  Once bruxism becomes a habit, the original stimulus can be removed and the bruxism will continue.

Bruxism can also be treated with mouth guards, much like TMJ therapy.  Further treatments may involve biofeedback or hypnotherapy to promote relaxation.

In any case, always follow the advice of your doctor and seek the medical attention that is suggested.

Tooth Talk With Tommy The Wisdom Tooth

Sleep Apnea May Affect COVID-19 Severity

A Reprint of an articly by Melissa Busch, DrBicuspid.com assistant editor
Patients diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) may be at increased risk for more severe complications from COVID-19, according to a new study published on September 8 in Sleep Medicine Reviews.

Dentists may want to focus on screening patients for the life–threatening condition, which is largely undiagnosed.  Though dentists cannot diagnose sleep apnea, they can see if patients´ tongues or tonsils are enlarged and ask other health–related questions and refer them to sleep specialists.

“COVID–19 may have adverse effects on OSA and treated OSA patients may be at increased risk of death from COVID–19,” wrote the authors, led by Michelle Miller, PhD, of Warwick Medical School at the University of Warwick in Coventry, U.K.
Many never diagnosed

Approximately 22 million individuals in the U.S. have sleep apnea, and about 80% of cases of moderate and severe OSA are undiagnosed, according to the American Sleep Apnea Association.

Symptoms of apnea include snoring, waking up with headaches, and feeling tired all day.  Custom–fit oral appliances, which are worn by patients at night, can treat sleep apnea and snoring in adults by properly positioning the jaw and preventing the airway from collapsing.  Untreated apnea can lead to heart problems and high blood pressure, and it is associated with diabetes.  These same health conditions are linked to the respiratory disease COVID–19.

To investigate a potential connection between sleep apnea and increased risk for more severe complications and death due to COVID–19, the researchers completed a systematic review of 18 studies completed through June 2020 that reported outcomes for COVID–19 patients who were also diagnosed with the sleeping disorder.

A lot in common

Many COVID–19 patients who went to intensive care had obstructive sleep apnea.– Those patients who also had diabetes had an increased risk that was independent of other factors.  More specifically, patients diagnosed with diabetes, hospitalized for COVID–19, and being treated for sleep apnea were at a three times greater risk of dying on the seventh day of their hospital stay, according to the authors.

The link between sleep apnea and COVID–19 likely has to do with how they both affect bradykinin pathways, which are activated by increases in oxidative stress and inflammation.  Apnea already activates these pathways, and it´s likely that the novel coronavirus exacerbates this, the authors explained.

Though the similarities were noteworthy, the studies analyzed did have some limitations, including small sample size.  Also, it is difficult to determine the exact number of people who have sleep apnea and experienced worse outcomes due to COVID–19 because the sleep disorder is largely undiagnosed, they wrote.

More to do

The effect of the virus on those with this sleep condition needs to be studied further, and more needs to be done to identify those who have not yet been diagnosed with sleep apnea.

“The pandemic has had a major effect on the treatment management and diagnosis of OSA and moving forward it may be necessary to explore new diagnosis and treatment pathways for these individuals,” the authors wrote.

Until next time; brush, floss and keep smiling!

The above material is provided as an information service and is not intended as medical advice.

From Savon To You

The Coronavirus & Holiday Depression

The coronavirus has impacted all of our lives.  As we approach the holidays, for most people it´s a fun time of the year filled with celebrations, and social gatherings with family and friends.  For many people, it is a time filled with sadness, self-reflection, loneliness and anxiety.  Some of the most common sources of holiday depression are:
  • stress
  • fatigue
  • over-commercialization
  • financial stress
  • unrealistic expectations
All of these are important factors but the top one for 2020 is the inability to be with one´s family and friends.

Due to the restrictions that are currently in place and the chance of new ones being imposed, all we can do is watch the number of cases and pray that we will be able to follow through with our plans.

If you feel yourself falling into a depressed state or becoming lonely during this period, reach out to someone close to you if you can.  There are also plenty of other services available.  All you need to do is let someone know that you want some help.

A good stater resource may be SAMHSA´s National Helpline — 1–800–662–HELP (4357), a confidential, free, 24–hour–a–day, 365–day–a–year, information service or the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1–800–273–8255.  The Lifeline provides 24/7, free and confidential support for people in distress.

Stay safe and stay well and enjoy the upcoming season.

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