Beyond Brushing: The Key Role of Preventative Care in Dental Health

Dental health is a key part of overall well-being, and preventive care is the cornerstone of a healthy smile. Tooth decay, gum disease and other oral problems are largely preventable with consistent brushing, flossing and regular check-ups at the dentist. Unfortunately, 132 million Americans lack dental insurance.1 This is a major obstacle to preventative dentistry, which relies on affordable dental care to thwart issues before they arise.

Preventative dental care is all about preventing disease and tooth loss through the regular routine of teeth cleanings, brushing with fluoride toothpaste and other preventive habits. This proactive approach to oral health empowers patients and reduces the need for costly and time-consuming treatments like fillings, crowns or extractions.

Brushing twice a day with a fluoride-containing toothpaste, flossing daily and avoiding sugary foods are all essential steps in maintaining a healthy mouth and smile. These efforts are only enhanced by a healthy diet, and regular checkups with a hygienist, who can reach areas that a patient’s toothbrush and floss cannot, to remove plaque buildup and detect any developing dental issues.

A healthy mouth can help prevent other health concerns like heart disease and diabetes. Research shows that a person’s oral and general health are connected, with the mouth acting as a breeding ground for harmful bacteria. Poor oral health can also lead to other health issues, such as respiratory infections and low birth weight in newborns. If you have questions about preventing or treating dental issues, call Dr. Karen Rosen, DDS for an appointment. Our dental clinic can help you determine the right dental care options for your needs and create a personalized plan for you.

While genetics play a role in a person’s oral health, a combination of at-home dental care and preventive visits with the dentist can significantly decrease a person’s risk of developing diseases like gum disease, gingivitis (the earliest stage of gum disease) and tooth decay. Preventive visits can also identify and treat existing issues, such as cavities and broken teeth.

Access to preventive dental care is vital for a healthy life, and is especially important for children, where cavities remain one of the leading unmet health needs, affecting more than a third of all children.1

Having access to affordable preventive dental care is also vital in reducing disparities in oral health, particularly in communities of need, where poverty and lack of access to healthcare can be a barrier to oral health.2

For example, a new outreach program from UIC’s Dental School aims to reduce the number of kids who get cavities by promoting preventive visits and improving the availability of oral health education in low-income communities. The program, called CO-OP Chicago, works to provide access to affordable dental services in Torrance most vulnerable neighborhoods and is leveraging partnerships with community organizations to improve access to oral health care for children.

Chiropractic Care and Its Growing Significance in Pain Management

Chiropractic is a drug-free, non-invasive approach to healing and wellness that addresses the root cause of your pain, not just masking it. It can improve your nervous system’s performance, boost your immune system, ease digestion, enhance cognitive function, assist in healthy pregnancies and bolster athletic performance. Often, patients who seek chiropractic care do so because they are looking for an alternative to pain medications that have potential side effects or even addiction.

Most health insurance companies now cover chiropractic services. However, there are some that restrict access to chiropractors. If you are one of those patients, we recommend finding an in-network doctor to avoid costly copays and coinsurance. The American Chiropractic Association lists the names of chiropractors that are recognized as “in network” with most major health insurance providers.

A new study highlights the value of including chiropractors on multidisciplinary pain teams. The researchers studied a chronic pain patient with severe back problems who was referred to a chiropractic clinic within a Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC). The clinicians on her pain team included primary care physicians, behavioral health consultants, and clinical nurse specialists as well as a physiotherapist, physical therapist and a clinical pharmacist.

The patient’s symptoms improved with the addition of chiropractic care and a reduction in her prescription medication usage. Her progress was based on subjective reporting and observation by her healthcare providers; it was not objectively assessed.

Chiropractic care includes spinal manipulation, therapeutic exercises and modalities such as therapeutic ultrasound. Therapeutic ultrasound uses high-frequency sound waves to create heat within muscles and tissues, which promotes blood flow and can alleviate pain. It is particularly useful for musculoskeletal injuries, including those of the neck, shoulder and wrists.

The use of modalities such as massage and heat also contributes to pain relief. These techniques can also help re-establish muscle strength and joint mobility. They can relieve musculoskeletal pain by reducing tension, inflammation and swelling. They can help with flexibility, which can decrease the risk of injury. They can also help with relaxation and stress management, which may reduce pain by easing anxiety and depression.

In addition to helping with pain management, chiropractors can identify any other health conditions that may be contributing to the patient’s health problems. They can then refer the patient to other healthcare providers for appropriate treatment.

Those who are interested in receiving chiropractic care can find a qualified provider at Midtown Family Wellness. Our office has years of experience treating musculoskeletal conditions and can provide you with the best advice for your specific condition. Contact us today to schedule an appointment. We are committed to providing you with the highest quality of service and look forward to your visit!

Finding Effective Relief from Knee Pain: Strategies and Tips

Knee pain is a common ailment that affects people of all ages, from athletes to the elderly. It can be caused by various factors such as injuries, overuse, medical conditions, or the natural aging process. Dealing with knee pain can be challenging, but the good news is that there are several effective strategies and tips to help alleviate discomfort and improve your quality of life. This article explores a range of approaches to finding relief from knee pain, both natural and medical.

Rest and Ice

One of the initial steps in managing knee pain is to give your knee some time to rest. This means avoiding activities that exacerbate the pain and placing less stress on the joint. Applying ice to the affected area can help reduce inflammation and numb the pain. Using an ice pack for 15-20 minutes every 2-3 hours can provide relief, especially in the first 48 hours after the onset of pain.

 Physical Therapy and Exercise

Engaging in appropriate exercises and physical therapy can strengthen the muscles around your knee, providing better support and stability. Low-impact exercises like swimming, stationary cycling, and gentle stretching can help improve flexibility and reduce stiffness. A physical therapist can design a customized exercise program tailored to your specific needs and abilities, ensuring that you’re on the path to recovery.

 Weight Management

Excess weight can put additional stress on your knees, exacerbating pain and discomfort. Maintaining a healthy weight can significantly alleviate knee pain by reducing the load on the joint. A balanced diet and regular exercise can help you shed extra pounds and improve overall joint health.

 Pain-Relieving Medications

Over-the-counter pain relievers such as acetaminophen, ibuprofen, and naproxen can provide temporary relief from knee pain. However, it’s important to use these medications according to their instructions and consult a healthcare professional, especially if you have any pre-existing conditions or are taking other medications.

Supportive Devices

Braces, splints, and knee sleeves can offer support and stability to the affected knee, aiding in pain relief and preventing further strain. These devices can be particularly beneficial during physical activities or when you need to be on your feet for extended periods.

Alternative Therapies

Several alternative therapies have gained popularity for their potential to provide relief from knee pain. These include acupuncture, chiropractic care, and massage therapy. While research on their effectiveness varies, some individuals find these therapies helpful in managing their pain and improving overall joint function.

 Assistive Devices

For individuals with chronic knee pain or mobility issues, assistive devices like canes or walking sticks can provide added support and reduce the pressure on the knees. Consult with a healthcare professional to determine which device is best suited to your needs.


In some cases, medical professionals might recommend corticosteroid injections to reduce inflammation and provide temporary pain relief. Hyaluronic acid injections, which act as lubricants for the joint, are another option for individuals with conditions like osteoarthritis.

Surgical Intervention

If conservative treatments prove ineffective, surgical options might be considered. Procedures such as arthroscopy, knee replacement, or repair of ligaments can provide lasting relief for certain conditions. Consultation with an orthopedic surgeon is crucial to determine the most suitable course of action.

Lifestyle Modifications

Adopting certain lifestyle changes can contribute to long-term relief from knee pain. Wearing comfortable and supportive footwear, avoiding high-impact activities, and practicing proper body mechanics can help prevent further strain on the knees.

Finding effective relief from knee pain requires a comprehensive approach that considers both natural remedies and medical interventions. It’s important to consult with a healthcare professional to accurately diagnose the underlying cause of the pain and develop a personalized treatment plan. By combining rest, exercises, pain management strategies, and lifestyle adjustments, individuals can work towards minimizing knee pain, improving joint function, and enhancing their overall quality of life.

Dental Treatments Unveiled: Enhancing Oral Health and Aesthetics

Veneers are used to correct cosmetic imperfections, such as discoloration, chips, cracks or gaps. Designed to enhance and beautify your smile, they can offer a dramatic change in appearance that will leave you with an enchanting, natural-looking smile. They can also be used to address underlying issues, such as crooked teeth or jaw symmetry, or even a gummy smile.

Dental fillings are a common treatment used to repair cavities or to address other dental conditions. The dentist will first perform a thorough examination to determine the extent of damage or decay, and then decide on the appropriate course of treatment. In most cases, a tooth-colored composite resin will be used to create the filling, which can then be bonded to the damaged tooth to form a solid structure that prevents further harm.

Many people do not get the regular oral health care they need. This can lead to dental problems like gum disease, tooth loss, and other serious health conditions. It can also affect a person’s ability to eat and speak, which can impact their overall quality of life. Strategies to improve access to oral health care include community-level interventions such as water fluoridation, as well as individual-level initiatives such as routine preventive visits.

While a majority of dental visits take place in dentists’ offices, new models are bringing oral health services to the communities where people live, work, and play. One such approach is the virtual dental home (VDH), which involves a licensed healthcare professional trained in the provision of routine and restorative care using portable technology and a secure internet connection. VDHs are located in a variety of settings, including Head Start sites, residential facilities for people with disabilities, and long-term care homes. They have the ability to exchange digital images and patient records with a collaborating dentist. For more details visit your local dentist in Northbrook.

In spring 2016, the Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured convened a wide-ranging, multistakeholder discussion of current opportunities and challenges associated with prioritizing adult oral health in the United States. Participants in the roundtable included federal and state Medicaid officials, representatives from large health centers and large Medicaid health plans, dentists, a clinical expert from a community health center, and policy researchers. The participants’ range of perspectives and expertise provided a comprehensive overview of the issues that must be addressed to improve access to affordable, high-quality dental care for low-income adults. This brief highlights key themes that emerged from the conversation.