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These 5 personalities with Down Syndrome prove that nothing is impossible

It is rightly said, ‘where there is a will, there is a way.’ Anyone with determination and a strong will can go places even when faced with tough circumstances and hurdles. People with any kind of disabilities who pursue their dreams despite the odds are a perfect example of this. Despite serious restrictions, these individuals have inspired millions across the world by succeeding in doing the unimaginable. Every year, people around the world celebrate World Down Syndrome Day on March 21. Those with the syndrome have to constantly face personal as well as professional hurdles. There are many among them who leave no stone unturned to excel at things they love. Here are five such personalities with Down Syndrome, who prove they can achieve whatever they put their minds on and nothing can stop them, certainly not Down Syndrome.   Riza RejiRiza is a young woman from Bengaluru, who was the first Indian to get selected for participating in the annual ‘Be Beautiful, Be Yourself’ fashion show by the Global Down Syndrome Foundation. It is a show that is held annually to raise funds for carrying out research on cognitive health problems. Riza was selected for the show after an online audition. She has a strong liking for art and is a trained dancer too. In several media interviews, she spoke of how art and theatre helped her express her thoughts and feelings. Sujeet DesaiSujeet Desai is a musician by profession and the first with Down Syndrome to play at Carnegie Hall in 2015. Sujeet has mastered seven instruments including violin, piano, trumpet, bass clarinet, alto saxophone, and drums. He has also won many awards including the Achievement Award on United Nations International Day of Disabled Persons. He has also won the World Down Syndrome Day Award from Down Syndrome International. Desai has performed in 13 countries till now. Collette DivittoWhen the culinary world rejected Collette Divitto, she went on to set up her own successful cookie business, Collette's Cookies. Divitto developed a passion for baking when she took a class during high school. After going viral she was invited to appear on several television channels which has made her quite popular. Tim HarrisHarris is an athlete who competed in basketball, poly hockey, volleyball, golf and track and field in the Special Olympics. He has also won numerous gold medals. Harris had also opened his restaurant in Albuquerque, New Mexico, naming it ‘Tim's Place’ before closing it in 2016. Chelsea WernerChelsea Werner couldn’t walk until she was nearly two years old. The doctors had told her she would always have low muscle tone. Werner proved the doctors wrong when she became a four-time US National Championships winner in gymnastics at the Special Olympics. Following this, she pursued modelling and has not only appeared on the cover of popular teen magazines but also walked at New York Fashion Week in 2016. While these are only a few of them, the list only keeps getting longer. While society may have reservations about people with Down Syndrome, these will definitely inspire many. Also Read: World Down Syndrome Day 2023: Everything you must know about it

21 March,2023 03:19 PM IST | Mumbai | mid-day online correspondent
Image for representational purposes only. Photo Courtesy: iStock

World Down Syndrome Day 2023: Everything you must know about it

The life of those with Down Syndrome has not been easy. Besides hampered physical and mental development, the kind of ill-treatment and discrimination they are subjected to just worsens life for them. They are often face challenges while accessing basic rights like education, quality health services or the right to earn. According to the United Nations, each year around five thousand children are born with Down Syndrome. On this day, the international agency invites all its member states as well as relevant international organisations to have an in-depth and fruitful conversation for building a better life for those with Down Syndrome. What is Down Syndrome?Down Syndrome is a genetic condition caused when anyone is born with an extra chromosome.  People with Down Syndrome have some common features like small ears, a flat nose, eyes slanted up at the outer corner, protruding tongue, short neck, small hands and feet, etc. Down Syndrome has no cure and is a lifelong condition. Nevertheless, there are treatments in place which, if received at the right time can help individuals live a meaningful life. HistoryEvery year World Down Syndrome Day is observed on March 21. The United Nation General Assembly declared March 21 World Down Syndrome Day in December 2011 and it began observing the day from 2012 onwards. The 21st day of the third month has been selected as the designated date because the syndrome occurs due to the triplication of the 21st chromosome. Theme in 2023The theme for World Down Syndrome Day 2023 is ‘With Us, Not For Us.’ The motive of this theme is to ditch the old charity model and adopt a more human rights-based approach. This theme encourages people to advocate for equality. It seeks to view people with disabilities as having the right to be treated fairly, instead of viewing them as objects of charity, pity, and someone who needs to constantly rely on others for support. Due to their condition, most of them may often face challenges in everyday life. This year’s theme urges people to change. Those with Down Syndrome must have the freedom to make their own choices and those supporting them must do things ‘with’ them, not ‘for’ them. Also Read: International Day of Happiness 2023: India ranks behind its neighbours in World Happiness Index

21 March,2023 01:47 PM IST | Mumbai | mid-day online correspondent
Studies have shown that people who are obese already have higher levels of key molecules associated with inflammation in their blood.  Photo Courtesy: iStock

Why obesity is linked to severe Covid-19: Study

A new study carried out by scientists has identified that Individuals who are obese may be more susceptible to severe Covid-19 because of a poorer inflammatory immune response, which can affect the body's ability to fight infections. Scientists at the Cambridge Institute of Therapeutic Immunology and Infectious Disease (CITIID) and Wellcome Sanger Institute showed that following SARS-CoV-2 infection, cells in the lining of the lungs, nasal cells, and immune cells in the blood show a blunted inflammatory response in obese patients, producing suboptimal levels of molecules needed to fight the infection. Studies have shown that people who are obese already have higher levels of key molecules associated with inflammation in their blood. Thus it was earlier speculated whether an overactive inflammatory response explains the connection between severe Covid-19 and obesity. But scientists found it to be the "absolute opposite". They found that obese patients had underactive immune and inflammatory responses in their lungs. To understand, the researchers analysed blood and lung samples taken from 13 obese patients with severe Covid requiring mechanical ventilation and intensive care treatment, and 20 controls (non-obese Covid-19 patients and ventilated non-Covid-19 patients). Compared to non-obese patients, they found that cells in the lining of their lungs and some of their immune cells had lower levels of activity among genes responsible for the production of two molecules known as interferons (INF) -- interferon-alpha and interferon-gamma -- which help control the response of the immune system, and of tumour necrosis factor (TNF), which causes inflammation. When they looked at immune cells in the blood of 42 adults from an independent cohort, they found a similar, but less marked, reduction in the activity of interferon-producing genes as well as lower levels of IFN-alpha in the blood, the researchers said in the paper published in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine. "This was really surprising and unexpected. Across every cell type we looked at, we found that the genes responsible for the classical antiviral response were less active. They were completely muted," said Professor Menna Clatworthy, a clinician scientist at the University of Cambridge. The team was able to replicate its findings in nasal immune cells taken from obese children with Covid, where they again found lower levels of activity among the genes that produce IFN-alpha and IFN-gamma. This is important because the nose is one of the entry points for the virus -- a robust immune response there could prevent the infection spreading further into the body, while a poorer response would be less effective, Clatworthy said. The findings could have important implications both for the treatment of Covid-19 and in the design of clinical trials to test new treatments. Also Read: Maha reports 128 new COVID-19 cases; active tally at 1,364  This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/ reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

21 March,2023 01:44 PM IST | London | IANS
Every year, March 21 is celebrated as World Down Syndrome Day. Image for representational purposes only. Photo Courtesy: Istock

Impact of Down Syndrome on family caregivers and lack of awareness


Ever since Divya Menon’s daughter was born with Down Syndrome a little over three years ago, it has only been an eye-opener about the many challenges that children with special needs face every day. She shares, “Ever since my daughter's birth, I became more aware of the lack of awareness of disabilities as well as the lack of inclusion in the mainstream.” Over three years, the Hyderabad-based professional has seen many parents and institutions come forward to spread awareness and that has been very encouraging for her in her journey into a completely new space. Every year, March 21 is celebrated as World Down Syndrome Day around the globe. The day in the third month was selected to signify the uniqueness of the triplication of the 21st chromosome that results in the syndrome in people. It is observed to raise awareness about the syndrome and the people dealing with many challenges every day. While there is increasing awareness about the syndrome and those suffering from it, family and friends of those believe there is a lot more that can be done for society to be inclusive towards those with Down Syndrome and Menon is one of them.  Challenges and support groupsIt is primarily because those with Down Syndrome face a range of challenges that affect their physical, cognitive, and social development. Dr. Sapna Bangar, psychiatrist (specialist - Child and Adolescent), head, Mpower Centre Mumbai explains, “They have intellectual disability that can range from mild to moderate, physical development delays such as delayed walking, fine motor skills development and slower speech development, health issues such as heart defects, gastrointestinal problems, hearing loss and vision problems.” Bangar says they also face challenges with social and emotional development such as difficulty with communication and social interactions and learning difficulties that include learning, memory, and attention. It is not without the discrimination and stigma that affects their opportunities for education, employment, and social inclusion. However, the Mumbai expert says there are exceptions, and many who lead happy lives with people around them. Till now, Menon says she hasn’t faced any challenges, however, she has two areas of focus that need to be addressed. While the lack of awareness is the primary challenge, she explains, “Inclusion in schools is still a struggle for many people.” She does admit that since her daughter Anjani is still very young, she still doesn’t have as much exposure to other challenges faced by people. “People equate disability to be a problem, while in reality, the lack of accessibility is the problem,” she adds. Luckily for Menon, who is still learning about the syndrome, she is also part of a strong parent support group that is helping her along the way. “We receive guidance from senior parents of children or adults with Down Syndrome as well as DSFI (Down syndrome Federation of India), the apex body that works tirelessly to create awareness.”Growing up with her younger brother Aryan (in picture), who has Down Syndrome, Dharini Mishra said her parents had to face many challenges while try to secure his education and training in skill development. Photo Courtesy: Dharini MishraInclusive education One of the most important aspects of growing up is receiving an education in school and that presents different kinds of challenges for parents and kids. While Menon’s daughter still hasn’t started school, she hopes that educational institutions are more inclusive for her daughter in the future. “Schools need to be inclusive and the methodology of one-size-fits-all needs to be done away with. Every child is different so evaluating them for the same parameters doesn't help.” She also believes that including children with different abilities in the mainstream helps the neuro-typical population acknowledge and accept the existence of people with different special needs and this would in the long-term benefit having a more inclusive society.   Even as the Hyderabad mother believes there should be inclusivity, Dharini Mishra stresses the need for more government schools for children with special needs along with hassle-free admissions. Mishra, who hails from Kanpur, has grown up with her younger brother Aryan, who lives with Down Syndrome. Now 26 years old, he grew up in the northern city, at a time when she says there were hardly any institutions for him. She explains, “My parents struggled with his education and more specifically his training in skill development. They even took him to a school in Rohtak, which was a government-sponsored institute built on a large campus and had basic facilities, but the staff was not trained to cater to the needs of such children.” So, the Mishras didn't admit him there. “He went to a special school in Kanpur itself. When we look back today, there were so many skills he could have mastered but he didn't get that proper training,” says Mishra, who like every other sister wants to see her brother do well in life.  Growing up with him and interacting with like-minded kids has shown Mishra how children with Down Syndrome are very focused and need only regular and precise coaching and it is something she hopes for others. “Only a well-trained teacher can nurture these special kids. Providing proper training for teachers is of utmost importance. Such training should be taken to smaller cities and towns as these places do not have proper infrastructure and trained teachers to teach such kids,” she explains.   Encouraging employment opportunities Mishra also shares Menon’s sentiment about how every child has different needs and so they need to be trained to cater to their skill development accordingly. However, it doesn’t stop there for her. “This change is also required in providing employment opportunities. I have seen people with impaired hearing and speech working in malls and hotels, which is a very good move. So, even Down Syndrome kids should be given a chance to work, however small that may be. With inclusivity, there will be more acceptance and these kids will become more confident and live an independent life.” Interestingly, Mishra, who only moved abroad a year ago has seen them get a lot of opportunities and live independent lives working in different places, depending on their brain development. She adds, “Society needs to change its mindset about people with special needs. If given proper care, correct training, and encouragement, these people are capable of performing various roles in our society.” While this seems ideal, Mishra is aware that it will take a lot of time even though there is increasing awareness of the kind that Menon has experienced. “There has been development in the awareness of Down Syndrome but still there is a long way to go when it comes to acceptance.” The fact that even today people target children and adults with the syndrome or family and friends don’t accept them proves to be a hurdle. “This leads to inferiority complexes and they stay in a shell,” she shares.   While that is society at large, there is a lot more to deal with in educational institutions. As many of them go to regular and special schools, one must admit that bullying is one aspect that occurs everywhere and needs to be dealt with but affects them differently. Bangar says, "Bullying is a serious issue that affects students with Down Syndrome more frequently than general children and can have long-term negative effects on their mental and emotional well-being. Teachers play a critical role in preventing and addressing bullying in schools.” She says, educating students about the syndrome, promoting inclusion in the class, monitoring their behaviour to see who is bullying or getting bullied but at the same time encouraging communication, teaching them how to resolve a conflict and last but not the least involving parents can be very helpful for those with Down Syndrome.  This is understandably only the tip of the iceberg. At the civic and community level, Bangar says providing accessibility accommodations such as wheelchair ramps, accessible restrooms, and elevators in public places is also a start. This can ensure that individuals with Down Syndrome can navigate public spaces independently. For adults, businesses and organisations can provide employees with training on how to interact with individuals with Down Syndrome to make their working experience easier.  Dr Bangar's tips to support individuals with Down Syndrome  Be patientIndividuals with Down Syndrome may take longer to understand and process information, so it's important to be patient when communicating with them.  Offer supportOffer your support and help in situations where they may feel overwhelmed or challenged. This could include accompanying them to appointments, helping them with daily tasks, or just being there to listen when they need to talk.  Encourage independenceEncourage them to do things on their own as much as possible, but also provide support and guidance when needed.  Celebrate achievementsCelebrate their achievements, no matter how small they may seem, as this can help boost their confidence and self-esteem.  Provide opportunitiesProvide opportunities for socialising and learning new skills, as this can help them develop their abilities and increase their confidence.  Avoid overprotectionWhile it's important to provide support, it's also important to avoid being overprotective, as this can limit their opportunities for growth and development.  Be inclusiveInclude individuals with Down's Syndrome in family and social activities, as this can help them feel valued and accepted. Also Read: Seven tips for best oral hygiene: Dos and don’ts you must follow  

21 March,2023 12:04 PM IST | Mumbai | Nascimento Pinto
This World Oral Health Day 2023, let us become more aware of the importance of oral hygiene. Photo Courtesy: iStock

Seven tips for best oral hygiene: Dos and don’ts you must follow

Oral hygiene is something that is taught to us right from our school days. It is a crucial part of our overall hygiene. Brushing twice a day is the most common tip taught since childhood that most of us conveniently choose not to follow it. Throughout the day, we consume a lot of food items which gets stuck between our teeth. Besides, our face and mouth are the first points of contact with external elements like germs. Keeping your mouth unclean can lead to infections and other health concerns. So, taking care of our oral health becomes more important. Some common indicators of bad oral hygiene are: 1. Bad breath 2. Bleeding gums 3. Decay or cavity in tooth/teeth 4. Toothache 5. Mouth sores Here are the seven easiest oral health tips that you can adopt in your day-to-day life: 1. As mentioned earlier, you must brush twice a day, once after waking up and once before going to sleep. This helps in killing all the bacteria that may reside in your mouth. 2. Just as brushing is important, it is also important to clean your tongue. 3. Rinse your mouth after every meal you consume to avoid decaying teeth. Rinsing of the mouth also helps in keeping bad breath at bay. 4. Use toothpaste which contains fluoride as it helps counter tooth decay. 5. Floss daily after brushing. It does not just help in removing minuscule food particles from teeth gaps but also stimulates the gums and reduces plaque. 6. You must keep drinking water from time to time as it helps in washing out the taste pungent and acidic taste of the foods you consume. 7. Visit your dentist at least twice a year for cleanings and checkups. While practising these tips daily are important, it is equally important to avoid some foods that are the worst enemies of your oral health.  1. Carbonated drinks 2. Coffee 3. Cookies or any sugar-based food 4. Alcohol 5. Sour candies 6. Tobacco This World Oral Health Day 2023, let us become more aware of the importance of oral hygiene and take the correct steps to avoid the health concerns that are likely to arise due to poor oral health, in the future. Read More: How do genetic factors influence oral health

20 March,2023 06:18 PM IST | Mumbai | mid-day online correspondent
Every year, International Day of Happiness is celebrated on March 20. Image for representational purpose only. Photo Courtesy: istock

International Day of Happiness 2023: Being happy through mindfulness


International Day of Happiness is observed on March 20 every year across the globe. Established by the United Nations to outline the importance of happiness within our lives, the day also aims to highlight the significance of well-being. While happiness is fleeting and aspirational for most, certain practices, such as being mindful, can aid holistic well-being. On International Day of Happiness, we got a range of experts from JetSynthesys' to share actionable tips that can be adapted to enhance happiness in our everyday lives.   Ritu Gupta, life coach and neuro-linguistic programming therapist  Acceptance One of the most important tenets of living mindfully is acceptance, and it is not the same as tolerance but honouring individual differences. For eg: If you have a difference of opinion at work or home, what do you do? Lash out or stay silent? Practicing acceptance and thus mindfulness would mean, to agree, to disagree without losing control over your emotions. Responding mindfully would be like, communicating not what you dislike or disagree with but what you want or need, maintaining personal boundaries and mutual respect for self and others.  Responsibility The second most important tenet of living mindfully is responsibility. Often mistaken as taking others' load onto your shoulders, responsibility is about taking ownership of everything you do and being aware of the impact it would have on your physical-emotional being just as much as it would affect the environment around, people alike. For eg: You are upset with others’ actions, be it at home, on the road, at the workplace, or just watching the news on the television or social media. Practicing responsibility and thus mindfulness would mean, taking ownership of your role in that equation, if only you have one. You can only take responsibility for your doing and not for others (read misdoings).  Kindness Being kind to oneself and others is quintessential to staying authentic and thus living mindfully. For eg: You often judge people and feel judged most of the time. Is this your reality too? Practicing kindness and thus living mindfully, is to stay true to yourself. Being clear of your intention in doing everything you do, allowing yourself to feel how you feel and feeling it fully, and seeing other’s actions from a space of non-judgment helps one respond from the space of clarity and not react. It is ok to be angry. It is ok to be guilty. It is ok to be sad. You are human! Be one. And bring in a little more Love, each day. Living mindfully is simple. You would know when you are tired and stressed, drink water, and stay hydrated to allow the body to cool down. When you feel tired but not stressed, your body is seeking rest, so sleep. When you are not very tired, but stress is taking the best of you, find yourself a silent corner, journal or gently close your eyes and simply observe your thoughts. Allow them all to come up. Meditate. Your mind needs some decluttering to restore its balance.   Vidisha Kaushal, sound healing and life mastery expert   Practicing non-resistance and non-judgment to the present momentDon’t like where you are or who you are with? How about accepting what exists? How about telling yourself it is not in alignment with you instead of practicing criticism and judgement, once you stop resisting and judging, you are free to make a change in your situation. But without acceptance, we can fall into an endless pit of victimhood or the why me syndrome.  Check-in with your body The body is a storehouse of emotions, especially unprocessed ones. As often as you can, close your eyes and check how it feels inside the body. Instead of running away from unpleasant sensations, and thoughts, embrace them, give them love, and watch them eventually dissolve.  Spend some time in natureOften the mind oscillates between the past and the future. Nature organically disrupts the oscillating mind and transports us into the present moment and heals us at the same time. So lean against a tree or sit and watch the sky and notice how present you feel.   Nishtha Bijlani, yoga expert  Grounding This can be best done as soon as you wake up. Take the time to slowly rest your feet on the ground. Take slow and mindful steps around the house. Be aware of each step and the sensations on the soles of the feet. Enjoy the connection to the earth. Let it slow you down. Make sure to do so bare feet. This can also be practiced later in the day. The effect is heightened when done on grass, sand, or earth.    Mindful eating Growing up in an Indian household, we have always been corrected by our elders to chew our food slowly and not talk while eating. They were always teaching us to be mindful. Learning to savour your food without distractions has become a lost art. Make a small gratitude prayer before you start your meal. Take in all the colours and smells on your plate. Take each bite slowly without a rush. Stay connected to your food from the first touch to the last swallow. Watch how this positively impacts your digestion and your relationship with food.   Breath awareness  Breath is one thing we often take for granted. Most of it is an involuntary action of the body, hence, it is also easiest to ignore. But by simply being aware of your breath you can be in better control of your emotions and thoughts which as a result puts you in better control of your actions.    Allot 5 to 10 minutes in the day to sit in a comfortable position. Close your eyes and draw your attention to your nostrils. Be here to simply observe the breath moving in and out. Resist the urge to change the breath. Instead, simply observe. Also Read: International Day of Happiness 2023: India ranks behind its neighbours in World Happiness Index

20 March,2023 04:50 PM IST | Mumbai | Maitrai Agarwal
Every year, International Day of Happiness is celebrated on March 20. Image for representational purpose only. Photo Courtesy: istock

72 per cent of Indians confess to snacking more when they are happy: Report

Many of us consume food depending on our state of mind and that is reflected when we rely on comfort food when we are stressed but it is also apparently the other way around.  Calling for happiness to be given greater priority, ahead of International Day of Happiness, 'STTEM - Safety, Technology, Taste, Ease & Mood Uplifter' - The India Snacking Report (Volume I) by Godrej Yummiez, reveals that 72 per cent Indians confessed to snacking more when they are happy, highlighting how snacking is perceived as a mood uplifter. Amongst those who connect snacking with their mood, 70 per cent of Indians feel satisfied, happy, and excited after consuming snacks. When compared across regions, the report highlights that Eastern India showed the maximum skew with 75 per cent of its citizens snacking more when they are happy. North, West, and South India showed near similar levels of emotions scoring 72 per cent, 67 per cent, and 74 per cent respectively. The above findings get even more corroborated when looked at across cities. Amongst cities, people from Delhi, Chennai, Hyderabad, and Kolkata, snack more when they are happy. With Delhi topping the list at 81 per cent, followed by Chennai and Hyderabad at 77 per cent each, and Kolkata at 75 per cent, indicating that locals of these cities find snacks as mood uplifters. Besides, the average for Mumbai stood at 68 per cent, and the average for Ahmedabad residents opting for snacks when happy is 67 per cent. This is followed by Pune and Bengaluru at 66 per cent each, Lucknow at 62 percent, and Jaipur at 61 per cent. Another aspect that came up in the report was the food-mood connection in both genders, revealing that 74 per cent women and 70 per cent men snack more when they are happy. Abhay Parnerkar, chief executive officer (CEO), Godrej Tyson Foods Limited (GTFL), said, "As a category thought leader, Godrej Yummiez understands consumers well and shaped trends redefining the frozen ready-to-cook segment. The India Snacking Report is one such initiative by Godrej Yummiez to analyse and predict snacking trends. The report clearly showcases consumers perceive snacking as a mood uplifter. Going forward, the dynamics that will shape India's snacking habits will be based on the acronym STTEM- Safety, Technology, Taste, Ease & Mood Uplifter- the five pillars. Speaking specifically of the mood pillar, snacking will have a larger influence over both consumers and brands." Also Read: International Day of Happiness 2023: India ranks behind its neighbours in World Happiness Index This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/ reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

20 March,2023 09:47 AM IST | New Delhi | IANS
Representation pic

Experts shares 5 tips to keep your gums healthy

Are bleeding gums coming in the way if you brushing your teeth well? Does the sensitivity in your teeth prevent you eating your favourite ice cream? Are you not smiling because you are conscious of your swollen gums? The one-stop solution to all your problems is to improve the health of your gums! Celebrity dentist Kshama Chandan, founder of House of Tooth in Mumbai shares everyday tips for your gums. Healthy gums are pink, and firm, do not bleed and fit snugly around your teeth. Your lifestyle can greatly impact your gum health which includes your- diet, age, and oral care. How do you know if your gums are healthy? "If your gums are sensitive, swollen, red, or bleeding, these are an indication that your gums are not as healthy as they ideally should be," says Chandan. Here are some tips:Brush your teeth properlyBrushing is the key to having a healthy mouth and gums.Brush your teeth at least twice a day using a medium-soft toothbrush, and use Fluoridated toothpaste.Change your toothbrush every few months.Change your toothbrush if the bristles start fraying.Hold the toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to the hums while brushing -- Do not scrub your teeth while brushing, instead use short strokes. Floss dailyFlossing every day helps to loosen the food that gets stuck between your teeth and hence causes gum irritation. It also helps to remove plaque from areas that are hard for the brush to reach. If the food and plaque stay in this area for a long time, this leads to tartar hard build-up of bacteria that cannot be removed by regular brushing. You can Schedule an appointment with your dentist to get rid of this stubborn layer of tartar. Quit smokingSmoking and other tobacco products like paan, gutka, etc. lead to gum disease. Tobacco also limits blood flow which makes it hard for a wound to heal quickly. Making sure you quit Smoking should be your priority if you're suffering from bleeding gums. Look what you're eatingWe all know that whatever food we eat has an impact on our health. Food items that are high in sugar content are more likely to cause cavities in the teeth. Whereas healthy vegetables and proteins are good for your oral health. Adding vitamins and minerals to your diet also helps to improve your oral health. Regular dental check-upsDental check-ups include a cleaning of the mouth. Getting your teeth professionally cleaned is the only way to remove tartar from the teeth. Professional cleaning also helps to remove the plaque which cannot be removed by normal tooth brushing. These are a few tips and tricks to keep your oral health at your A1 game. Also Read: Are you experiencing thinning of hair? Here are quick tips to keep it in check This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/ reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

19 March,2023 10:05 PM IST | New Delhi | IANS
Representational image. Pic/iStock

Carbs, sugary diets may cause poor oral health: Study

A new study conducted in the US revealed links between widely consumed foods and the diversity and composition of oral bacteria in postmenopausal women. Scientists from the University at Buffalo have shown how eating certain types of foods impacts the oral microbiome of postmenopausal women. They found that higher intake of sugary and high glycemic load foods -- like doughnuts and other baked goods, regular soft drinks, breads and non-fat yogurts -- may influence poor oral health and, perhaps, systemic health outcomes in older women due to the influence these foods have on the oral microbiome. In a study in Scientific Reports, an open access journal from the publishers of Nature, the UB-led team investigated whether carbohydrates and sucrose, or table sugar, were associated with the diversity and composition of oral bacteria in a sample of 1,204 postmenopausal women using data from the Women's Health Initiative. It is the first study to examine carbohydrate intake and the subgingival microbiome in a sample consisting exclusively of postmenopausal women. The study was unique in that the samples were taken from subgingival plaque, which occurs under the gums, rather than salivary bacteria. "This is important because the oral bacteria involved in periodontal disease are primarily residing in the subgingival plaque," said study first author Amy Millen, PhD, associate professor of epidemiology and environmental health in UB's School of Public Health and Health Professions. "Looking at measures of salivary bacteria might not tell us how oral bacteria relate to periodontal disease because we are not looking in the right environment within the mouth," she added. The research team reported positive associations between total carbohydrates, glycemic load and sucrose and Streptococcus mutans, a contributor to tooth decay and some types of cardiovascular disease, a finding that confirms previous observations. But they also observed associations between carbohydrates and the oral microbiome that are not as well established. The researchers observed Leptotrichia spp., which has been associated with gingivitis, a common gum disease, in some studies, to be positively associated with sugar intake. The other bacteria they identified as associated with carbohydrate intake or glycemic load have not been previously appreciated as contributing to periodontal disease in the literature or in this cohort of women, according to Millen. "We examined these bacteria in relation to usual carbohydrate consumption in postmenopausal women across a wide variety of carbohydrate types: total carbohydrate intake, fiber intake, disaccharide intake, to simple sugar intake," Millen said. "No other study had examined the oral bacteria in relation to such a broad array of carbohydrate types in one cohort. We also looked at associations with glycemic load, which is not well studied in relation to the oral microbiome." The key question now is what this all means for overall health, and that's not as easily understood just yet. "As more studies are conducted looking at the oral microbiome using similar sequencing techniques and progression or development of periodontal disease over time, we might begin to make better inferences about how diet relates to the oral microbiome and periodontal disease," Millen said. Also Read: Cheddar fever: Indian cheesemakers give desi touch to their cheese, win at World Cheese Awards 2022 This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/ reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

19 March,2023 10:00 PM IST | Washington | ANI
Image for representational purpose only. Photo: istock

Ask your dentist these seven questions about dental implants

Dental implants are the most widely talked about treatment modality in dentistry nowadays. Dr. Richa Vats, geriatric dentist and Implantologist shares important facts regarding implants.  This is perhaps one of the most common and obvious first questions to ask before dental implants. A dental implant isn't an actual tooth, but a prosthesis used for replacing missing teeth. Basically, it's a small titanium fixture the dentist inserts into your jawbone, on top of which the dentist can attach a tooth. This process is done surgically. Implants serve as your missing teeth's roots. Since dental implants fuse with your jawbone, they won't make noise, slip or cause bone damage like dentures or fixed bridgework may.  A dental implant cannot harm the body adversely. The implant is completely submerged in the bone so you don't feel any foreign body sensation or irritation. Since it is made with titanium alloy it doesn't feel heavy either. Also, it is safe to get an MRI or a CT scan done with implants, a radiologist might have trouble interpreting this scan because of the scattering artifacts.    While discomfort can vary between people, most individuals report getting their dental implant was much less uncomfortable than they anticipated it to be. During the surgical dental implant procedure, the dentist will give you an anesthetic, so you should feel minimal discomfort if any. If you follow the dentist's post-operative instructions and take the prescribed antibiotics, you should experience minimal discomfort. Your dentist will likely prescribe you pain medication as well. Post-operative instructions are almost similar to that of a dental extraction, which includes a soft diet, no smoking. Basically, not disturbing the surgical site.   Very rarely does an individual's body reject an implant. The very few rejections are due to rare allergies to the titanium alloy that make up the implant. In this case your dentist will pull out the implant, allow the bone to heal and re-insert a new implant. Another reason why an implant could fail is if you don't take proper care of it after your surgery. Without excellent oral hygiene, natural teeth fail and fall out eventually. Dental implants are no different. When you take good care of your teeth and your implants, it will help prevent gum decay and structure failure later on.   Similar to any oral surgical procedure, there is a chance of infection, pain and inflammation. However, negative effects are rare and usually minor if they do occur. Also, if the dentist can't place the implant because of limited bone availability, then you may require a bone and gum grafting procedure, which could increase your treatment cost. To be a good candidate for implants, you need to have good oral and general health. You also need to have adequate bone in your jaw to support the dental implant, be free of periodontal disease and have healthy gum tissues.  An existing denture wearer (it might be possible for your dentist to place the implants beneath existing dentures to help stabilise and support them. However, the dentist can only do this if your existing dentures are in excellent condition). Dental implants can help provide support and retention for a removable implant overdenture. Implants help ensure that the full or partial denture doesn't move and decreases the need for denture glue or adhesives. Don't smoke or be willing to quit. Absolute contraindications to implant rehabilitation include recent myocardial infarction and cerebrovascular accident, and valvular prosthesis surgery. Patients on hormonal therapy like uncontrolled diabetes. Immunosuppression, bleeding issues, osteoporosis, active treatment of malignancy, drug abuse, psychiatric illness, as well as intravenous bisphosphonate use. Relative contraindications will include tobacco addiction, inadequate bone support which cannot be augmented, controlled metabolic disorders and patients with poor oral hygiene and non-compliant patients.  The average implant process occurs in multiple steps. You may require more than one healing stage. So, there's a varied healing period, depending on your health, the number of teeth to be replaced, and other factors. However, the healing process generally takes anywhere from 12 to 16 weeks. Placing teeth right after the surgery isn't uncommon but can't be done for everyone. A lot of factors are to be considered before making this decision. Also, this is to be pre-planned before the surgery.   Dental implants can last a lifetime if you take care of them properly by regularly brushing, flossing and following your dentist's recommendations. While no one can guarantee the lifetime success of an implant, you can be provided with suggestions and guidelines on how to take good care of your teeth. The guidelines are based on your genetic history, proper hygiene procedures, and your nutritional habits. Also, you can expect some bone loss around your implant over a few years which may or may not affect the stability of your implant. So basically, they are a permanent solution for your missing teeth.  Also Read: How to balance mental and physical health to detox our bodies This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/ reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever.

19 March,2023 09:52 PM IST | Mumbai | IANS
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Having restless nights? New study says your pet dog or cat might be the reason

A new study has found that people having a pet dog or cat could suffer from restless nights more than people without pets. According to researchers at the Lincoln Memorial University, US, having a dog was associated with greater odds of having a sleep disorder and having trouble sleeping while having a cat was associated with a higher chance of having leg jerks. The differences in the association of sleep quality and cat versus dog ownership may be because cats tend to be more active at night, said Dr Lauren Wisnieski, Assistant Professor of Public Health and Research and Affiliation at the varsity. Furthermore, she found that there were fewer differences in sleep quality indicators between cat and non-cat owners compared to dog and non-dog owners. The findings are published in the CABI journal Human-Animal Interactions. The study did not establish the causal nature of pet ownership on sleep quality and sleep disorders, but the results are consistent with previous studies that found that pet ownership has a negative impact on sleep quality. Prior studies have shown varied results: on the one hand, dogs and cats were shown to be beneficial for an owner's quality of sleep due to the social support that pets provide - pets offer a sense of security and companionship, which may result in improvements in levels of anxiety, stress and depression. Yet on the other hand, it stated that pets may disrupt their owners' sleep. "If the causal relationship is established through further investigation, the results will have implications for clinician recommendations for treating patients with poor sleep quality," Wisnieski added. "Additionally, educational resources can be developed to inform pet owners about the risks of sleep disruptions and offer potential solutions, such as crating the pet or restricting access to the bedroom at night," she said Also Read: How do genetic factors influence oral health This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/ reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever  

19 March,2023 05:31 PM IST | New York | IANS
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