TELL ME A STORY
How Books Can Change Our Lives M any years ago, I was diagnosed with colon cancer. At the time, I was so confused and distraught. I kept asking things like, “Why is this happening to me? I’ve tried to lead a good, decent life. What did I do to deserve this?” That’s when my mother gave me a book called “When Bad Things Happen to Good People.” This book was written by a rabbi named Harold S. Kushner, and my mother had gotten it from her minister. It was a difficult time, but that book really helped me get through it. Kushner wrote the book after his son died of an incurable genetic disease at 14 years old. In the book, Kushner tried to answer that big question about why God allows pain and suffering in the world. There is no way for a human to answer this question, but Kushner’s book still manages to offer comfort to people in grief, including myself. There are always going to be good things and bad things in life, miracles and disasters, and reading Kushner’s words was very helpful to me during a difficult time.
I still have the paperback copy of “When Bad Things Happen to Good People” my mother gave me. I reread it occasionally and have given many other copies to people who have had serious issues arise in their own lives. A book can’t make a bad situation magically better, but it can help us gain a better understanding of the situation and find hope. I’m very glad I read this book and didn’t give up hope. Since then, I’ve been very blessed. I’m cancer-free, and I recently had a checkup that confirmed I’m in good health. Back in school and my early adult years, I wasn’t much of a reader. I’m not a very fast reader; I tend to read word by word, so it takes me a while to finish a book. But today, I have a much better reading habit. Several different books sit on my nightstand, and
every night I’ll read for at least 20 minutes before bed. It’s relaxing and enjoyable. Most of the books I read aren’t trying to tackle deep, philosophical questions, of course. I’ll usually read something entertaining, like James Patterson’s “Alex Cross” series or something pertaining to my profession, either on the topic of dentistry or sleep medicine. I also like to read inspirational self-help books. “Think and Grow Rich” is a classic I recommend everyone read. It was written in 1937, but it’s still full of sound principles and ideas. March 2 is Read Across America Day, and I think this is a good time to celebrate the real power of reading. A good book can inspire us to take action and change our lives, it can entertain us with some great adventure, and it can even give us hope in our darkest hour. This month, I encourage you to take just five minutes to read every day. You’ll be amazed at the good it will do for you.
“A book can’t make a bad situation magically better, but it can help us gain a better understanding of the situation and find hope.”
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Celebrate With These Little-Known Festivities Staying Stateside for St. Paddy’s?
There’s no place quite like Ireland on St. Patrick’s Day. What was once a purely religious holiday to honor the legend of St. Patrick chasing all the snakes out of the country has turned into a global celebration. If a trip to Ireland isn’t in the budget, check out these three little-known stateside destinations that are just as festive. Thanks to the clever thinking of some Irish friends meeting for a pint at a bar on one of the shortest streets in the world, Bridge Street in Hot Springs, Arkansas, the First Ever 17th Annual World’s Shortest St. Patrick’s Day Parade will travel 98 feet once again this year. Don’t assume the turnout isn’t robust just because the distance is staggeringly low. The parade lasts for hours, drawing thousands of people to watch celebrities, musicians, bands, floats, and Miss Arkansas glide by. The event Short and Sweet in Arkansas
also features a Blarney stone kissing contest and a parade king and queen.
on its heritage every March with a traditional parade, music, and Irish dancing. The town also hosts a popular dodgeball tournament and donkey basketball. What could be better than pummeling your opponents in dodgeball and outpacing the competition while riding a donkey in the school gymnasium? Perhaps enjoying a pint or two with your teammates afterward, and O’Neill is just the spot to do it. You may not be able to fly to Ireland, but you can visit a little piece of it right in the U.S. Head to Dublin, Ohio, this St. Patrick’s Day for a traditional celebration sure to put a wee bit o’ pep in your step. Partake in a traditional Irish breakfast or enjoy a parade complete with bagpipers and Irish dancers. Boasting one of the largest celebrations in the U.S., Dublin is an affordable alternative for those looking to celebrate the Irish way. Ohio’s Little Piece of Ireland
A Little Luck in America’s Heartland
O’Neill, Nebraska, is home to the world’s largest shamrock and more unique St. Patrick’s Day traditions. This Irish community doubles down
Artful Parenting When a teenager is involved in sports, it’s easy to show support for their passion. You take them to practice, go to their games, celebrate their victories, and help them learn from their losses. is where you can help. Introduce the work of contemporary artists to your teen, or better yet, give your teen opportunities to discover them on their own. Trips to museums and libraries can be just as impactful on growing artists as going to a ball game. How to Support Your Teen’s Artistic Passio s
The Big Leagues
Sure, there’s no varsity watercolor portrait team, but student artists can strive for important milestones. School clubs like student newspapers can provide a semiprofessional outlet for young artists, and there are myriad creative outlets outside the classroom as well. Community galleries, youth anthologies, coffee shop open mics — these are all amazing opportunities for your teen to take their work to the next level. Just as most teen athletes won’t be professional players, you don’t have to expect your artist to be the next Ursula K. Le Guin or Banksy. Whatever their interests are, helping your child explore their passions and enjoy a discipline will leave them with skills and memories they’ll draw upon the rest of their life.
However, what if your teen is more into arts than athletics? Without a literal sideline to cheer from, helping your child grow and develop in fields like writing, painting, and photography can feel — well, abstract. Make no mistake, parents can show concrete support in a few ways to help their budding artist grow and excel in the arts.
No. 1 Fan
You may not have to drive your high schooler to writing practice, but you can still give them the tools and support they need to hone their passion. The most obvious way is by asking to see their writing or art, but keep in mind many teens may not be willing to share something that personal. Still, reminding them you’re genuinely interested in their work can help them stick with their passion. Indirect gestures like buying them quality art supplies can also show them you value their craft.
Stars to Strive For
Just as many young athletes have star players they look up to and try to emulate on the field, aspiring artists can look to those making waves in their artistic fields today. Often, school courses focus on “the classics,” which can just feel like homework to an aspiring artist. This
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A Toothy Timeline
Dental Milestones Every Parent Should Know
Kids really do grow up fast. One moment they’re teething, and the next they’re getting their wisdom teeth removed in time for college. Along the way, they encounter so many changes that it’s overwhelming to keep track of them all. However, staying up to date on your kids’ dental developments is worth it. Here’s all the important milestones you can expect for your kids and how to keep their teeth healthy at each stage. Newborn to 3 Years Old Even before your child’s teeth come in, you can care for their oral health. Using a soft, damp cloth, gently wipe their gums to clean away bacteria. Once their first tooth emerges, start brushing with a soft-bristle toothbrush and a very small amount of toothpaste, about the size of a grain of rice. Once they have teeth side by side, begin flossing regularly. By 3 years old, they should have a full set of baby teeth, and you can increase the amount of toothpaste to pea-sized.
At this point, begin scheduling biannual dental cleanings as well. 3–6 Years Old These are formative years for your child and their teeth, so instilling good habits is important. Continue to brush their teeth every day to prevent tooth decay and acclimate them to the routine so they’re ready to take over when they’re old enough — usually around 6 years old. Also, while it’s normal for kids to suck their thumbs during this period, it’s a good idea to curb the habit before they get much older because alignment issues can occur as adult teeth grow in. 6–12 Years Old This is when the tooth fairy gets to shine. Over this period, your child should lose all 20 baby teeth and grow their molars. They’ll also be ready to take over brushing and flossing duties, It’s been a long, weird winter. When we’re in the middle of the cold winter months, I find myself daydreaming about being on the beach enjoying that warm summer breeze. Since we’re still several weeks away from that warmth and sunshine, the next best thing is to put on some summertime jams. My go-to is a little-known group called The Pete and Mike Band. Named after the founders and the only two band members, Pete McNamara and Mike Schanbacher, The Pete and Mike Band really captures the sound of the beach bum lifestyle. Their music is carefree, the kind of rock I’d call “California reggae,” which is funny because they’re actually from Woods Hole on Cape Cod, Massachusetts. Their songs are smooth, easy listening while still being full of interesting sounds and instruments. One of their songs could feature eight different instruments, which is really cool when you realize that it’s just these two guys playing everything. One of my sons introduced me to this band years ago, and since then I’ve bought all four of their CDs. My favorite is “Afloat,” which was Dr. Stuckey’s Playlist
so be sure they stick to the routine. Consider visiting an orthodontist during this period to get ahead of any potential alignment issues as adult teeth come in. The Teenage Years If your child needs braces, their teen years are generally the time to use them, and it’s important they adjust their brushing and flossing habits to account for the brackets. Your child may also need wisdom teeth removed anywhere from 17–25 years old. Hopefully by then, they will possess the positive dental habits to make this the only major dental surgery they’ll ever need.
Longing for Summer?
Don’t Miss Kids’ Day
Have you heard about Kids’ Day? Once a month, Briarfield Dental Care throws a special celebration focused exclusively on our youngest patients. The office is transformed with fun decorations, the whole team gets dressed up, and there are lots of prizes for kids who come in to join the fun. Plus, we have special spin brushes and offers on sealants and mouthguards only available during Kids’ Day.
March 19 - Dinosaur Day April 23 - Superhero Day May 21 - Shark Day June18 - Pirate Day July 23 - Summer Olympics
Congratulations to Nicholas! Nicholas had his name drawn and won a Crest + Oral B Fun Pack. The fun pack has an electric toothbrush, toothpaste, anti- Kids Club Winner:
the first CD The Pete and Mike Band released back in 2007. It has my favorite song of theirs, “Clueless,” which is the kind of song that instantly makes you start dreaming about being at the beach on vacation. If you’re tired of this long winter, I highly recommend checking out The Pete and Mike Band. They have the catchy, uplifting beats to help get you through the last of the winter blues.
cavity fluoride, and floss picks — all designed to support healthy dental hygiene!
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The Power of a Good Book
Stay Stateside With These Little- Known St. Patrick’s Day Celebrations Supporting Your Teen’s Art Dental Developments Every Parent Should Know Dr. Stuckey’s Playlist Win a Brand-New FitBit!
Now in Network for Paramount Dental, an Affiliate of ProMedica
Your Health MADE EASY Refer a Friend and Win a FitBit Versa!
The holidays are over, and it’s time to put away the sweets, get back to the gym, and make our health a priority again. The question is, what’s the best way to do that? A brief online search reveals a lot of articles with people boasting about what worked for them. This year, don’t take one-size-fits-all health advice. Learn what works best for you! To help our patients take control of their health, we’re giving away a brand- new FitBit Versa. Celebrated for its innovative, easy-to-use software, the FitBit Versa can build healthy eating habits, create exercise accountability, and teach you how to make the best health choices for your body.
Make 2020 the year you really keep those New Year’s resolutions!
How can I win? Enter to win your new FitBit by helping your friends and family improve their oral health! Any time a new patient gives your name at their first appointment, you’ll be entered to win the grand prize. The more people you refer, the more entries you’ll get and the better your chances of winning!
Make your health a priority and help your friends and family do the same!
Winner will be drawn on Thursday, April 30.
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