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A TIME OF NEW BEGINNINGS — And a Touch of Green
Spring — a time for new beginnings! The trees are getting ready to bud, and soon it will be green all around. That is, just as soon as winter finally rolls out. Back in February, the Pennsylvanian groundhog, Punxsutawney Phil, did indeed see his shadow, predicting six more weeks of winter. Now that we’re in March, most of us have completely forgotten about the Groundhog Day ritual — until next February when we once again wonder when spring will finally arrive. In March, we have more important things to think about. I am, of course, talking about spring cleaning — another ritual many of us take on every year. Homes have a habit of accumulating dust during the winter months. Air circulation isn’t always the best, and many of us heat our homes with fireplaces. Wood-burning and pellet stoves are a common source of winter dust, and when we get it cleared out, we can breathe easier. As you clean and organize your home this spring, don’t forget to clean the often forgotten about utility closet. Dust and other allergens can accumulate in this room, as well. To help keep your home’s air clean, be sure to change the air filter. Also, be sure to schedule routine maintenance on your HVAC system. Spring is generally the off-season, and you can make sure everything is running at peak efficiency before summer. Not only will it help keep your home at just the right temperature later this year, it will also help keep your energy bills down. Though, living in Wisconsin, such a prediction doesn’t mean much either way.
— plus their three dogs. They are still very much in the newlywed phase, having been married last September.
I’m looking forward to spending time with everyone and seeing their new house. I’m also excited to try some Las Vegas dining! While most people go to Vegas for the casinos, I’d much rather try the cuisine. It should be a fun trip! I’m also looking forward to St. Patrick’s Day, the big holiday of the month. This year, it’s on a Saturday, which means a lot of people will be doing some extra partying. It’ll certainly be a good excuse to have day where we all wear green at the office — which will probably be the Friday before St. Patrick’s Day. If you haven’t been to the office recently, you may not have met our newest hygienist, Meg. As it happens, she has Irish heritage! More importantly, though, she’s hit it off with our patients. People have been getting to know her during their regular cleanings and checkups. We’re all thrilled she’s a part of the team. Be sure to give her a “hello” when you get the chance. And one last thing: Don’t forget about your New Year’s resolutions! We’re three months into the year, and that’s when most people have completely forgotten what they had intended to accomplish. If you’re one of the many who fall into that category, here’s your reminder to get back on track. Good luck! –Dr. Anthony Butchert
Speaking of summer, I get my own slice of summer this March. I’ll be headed down to Las Vegas for a few days to visit my daughter and her new husband
FOR A REASON Green Dominates St. Patrick’s Day
Why Green Is the Color of St. Patrick’s Day
There’s only one day of the year you’ll be scorned for not wearing green: St. Patrick’s Day. If you’ve ever gone the whole holiday wearing any other color, you’ve probably been pinched by your peers, family, spouse, and anyone else decked out head to toe in green.
the symbol for the United Irishmen Rebellion became the clover. St. Patrick used the clover to teach the Irish people about the Holy Trinity, and it eventually became a symbol that represented both the saint and the holiday. Another theory comes from Ireland’s nickname, “The Emerald Isle,” which was coined because of the plentiful green foliage that adorns the country’s landscape. It also relates to the green in the flag. Each of the three colors in the flag have their own symbolic meaning: green for the Catholics who live in the country, orange for the Protestants, and white for the peace between the two. Of course, you can’t forget leprechauns, the little creatures that have always been affiliated with the holiday. But just like St. Patrick’s original blue garb, these impish tricksters used to wear red instead of green. While green overtook blue as the shade of choice for St. Patrick, leprechauns began putting on their signature green suits. You might wonder where the tradition of pinching comes from. We can thank the leprechauns for this one. It’s said that if the gold-loving redheads caught you not wearing their favorite color, they would pinch you. To avoid pinches from leprechauns and people alike, be sure to put on some green this St. Patrick’s Day to blend in with the festive crowd.
Green has become so deeply associated with the St. Patrick holiday that many people are unaware that green wasn’t always its
color to symbolize St. Patrick’s Day, and the saint himself is almost always depicted dressed in what’s known as “St. Patrick’s blue.”
What caused the shift from blue to green is more speculation than hard fact. Some have theorized that the change happened sometime in the 17th century, when
Sleep apnea affects millions of Americans, and thousands more are diagnosed every year. It’s a common and ongoing issue that affects many of our patients and their loved ones. The disorder can cause fatigue, brain fog, and elevated blood pressure. Over time, it can be deadly. The term sleep apnea does not refer to one single condition. The root cause differs from patient to patient. In the past, obesity was often linked to the development of sleep apnea, however, we’ve come to learn it’s much more complex. While obesity can impact a person’s breathing while asleep, it’s not always the direct cause of a patient’s sleep apnea. In some cases, the issue is muscular. When we sleep, the muscles in the jaw relax. This can cause the position of the jaw to change. For some people, the jaw sits further back and this can cause an obstruction of the airway during sleep, leading to snoring and sleep apnea. Sleep Apnea and What You Can Do About It Take the Next Step to a Restful Night
longer to get used to. It’s not uncommon for patients to give up on the device simply because it’s uncomfortable or because it takes too long to get used to.
Thankfully, there are alternatives to the CPAP machine. One alternative is to shift the position of the jaw, opening up the airway. If you or someone you know, such as your spouse, snores at night and isn’t getting a restful night’s sleep, we can help. It all starts with a self-test. First, visit eauclairedental.com/sleep-apnea. Here, you will find the link to your free self-test — your first step. Give it a try, and we can help you determine the best next step, so you can begin your journey to a restful night’s sleep.
To treat sleep apnea, most people turn to the CPAP machine. The problem is that CPAP machines don’t work for everyone, and they can take a month or
ELECTRIC OR MANUAL? Perks of a Powered Toothbrush
More Comfort If you have arthritis or dexterity difficulties, an electric toothbrush’s ability to vibrate on its own removes some of the pressure from your hands, making brushing a more comfortable and manageable experience. Improved Efficiency An electric toothbrush can move much more quickly and precisely than your hand alone, so you’ll be able to cover more surface area in the same amount of time and potentially remove more plaque. An electric toothbrush also discourages brushing too hard — the extra pressure on the brush will make the vibrations noisy and uncomfortable. If you’re looking for an electric brush, you’ll find a wide range of options, from SoniCare and Oral B’s standard products to Quip’s sleek, stylish, subscription- based model. Oral-B’s Oscillating-Rotating-Pulsating Power Toothbrush line recently became the first electric toothbrush to receive the ADA Seal of Acceptance. Most electric toothbrushes are rechargeable and have removable tops that you can change every few months as the bristles start to wear.
You know brushing your teeth for two minutes twice a day is essential to maintaining your oral health. What’s open to more debate, though, is which tool is better at cleaning your teeth: manual or mechanical brushes? The American Dental Association (ADA) states that both manual and powered toothbrushes are effective at removing plaque. But other clinical trials suggest positive results for people who switched to electric brushes. When the ADA surveyed 16,000 patients who’d replaced their manual brushes with mechanical ones, over 80 percent reported improved oral cleanliness. While the debate has yet to be settled, you might personally enjoy some of the added features of an electric toothbrush. Timed Brushing Most electric toothbrushes have timers, which encourage you to brush for a set amount of time — usually two minutes. When you press the power button, the toothbrush begins to vibrate and will continue to vibrate for two minutes. This feature takes out the guesswork and makes it easy to brush your teeth for the recommended time. For children who try to get out of brushing at every chance, the timer can turn brushing into more of a game and less of a chore.
So, what’s the bottom line? If an electric toothbrush gets you to brush more often and more effectively, it’s the right tool for you.
HAVE A LAUGH!
When you think of St. Patrick’s Day cuisine, corned beef and green beer are probably the first things that come to mind. This year, consider adding colcannon to your March 17 menu. It’s basically mashed potatoes on steroids, and it’s utterly delicious.
• • • •
3 pounds potatoes
1 pound cooked bacon, chopped into small pieces
2 sticks butter
• • •
4 scallions, finely chopped
1 1/4 cups hot milk
Parsley, for garnish
1 head cabbage, cored and shredded
Salt and pepper, to taste
DIRECTIONS 1. Steam potatoes for 30 minutes. Peel skins and mash flesh thoroughly. 2. Chop 1 stick of butter into small cubes and add to warm potatoes. Once melted, slowly add milk, stirring constantly. 3. Boil cabbage in water. Add 2 tablespoons of butter to tenderize. 4. Add cabbage, bacon, and scallions to mashed potatoes, gently stirring to combine. 5. Serve garnished with parsley and a pat of butter.
Inspired by foodnetwork.com
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INSIDE THIS ISSUE
1 2 2 3 3 4
Spring: A Time of New Beginnings!
St. Patrick’s Day vs. the Color Green
An Option for Sleep Apnea Sufferers
What You’ll Prefer About Electric Toothbrushes
Try This Recipe for St. Patrick’s Day!
The Widespread Appeal of LaCroix Sparkling Water
WHY IS EVERYONE CRAZY ABOUT LACROIX?
A Sparkling Success Story
Huge displays of canned beverages are nothing new for grocery stores. Traditionally, those towers were either Coca-Cola red or Pepsi blue. But these days, you’re just as likely to see a display featuring an array of pastel colors. The cans in those boxes are LaCroix (pronounced la-croy) sparkling water. In the past few years, the brand has exploded in popularity, and it will only get more ubiquitous as 2018 continues.
flavors (coconut is particularly divisive). With over a dozen varieties, including “pure” sparkling water, there’s a LaCroix for every palate.
In addition to its great taste and the nutritional benefits of switching from soda, LaCroix has a refreshing approach to marketing. Unlike their biggest competitor, Perrier, they’ve designed their packaging to be fun and inviting. There’s nothing stodgy about their branding, and the same goes for the price point. In many grocery stores, it’s cheaper than bottled water!
You don’t have to be a dentist or a dietician to know that soda is bad for you. It’s basically water, high fructose
corn syrup, acid, and coloring. In comparison, LaCroix is just sparkling water with natural fruit essences and no sweeteners. All you’ll see on the nutrition label on the back of a can are zeros. As we become a more health-conscious society, more people are replacing their soda habit with a LaCroix obsession.
LaCroix’s recipe of affordable, natural, and delicious has made the soda industry giants green
with envy. They’re racing to create competitive products that will recapture the market. If you haven’t jumped on the LaCroix bandwagon yet, there’s no better time than now. Who knew that sparkling water could be so cool? The people at LaCroix did, and they’ve bubbled to the top of people’s minds as a result. It’s a sweet success story, no sugar added.
In fact, you probably know a zealous fan of the sparkling water. Without any big advertising budget, LaCroix has created an army of admirers. People proudly display their stocked fridges on Instagram and debate the merits of specific
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