Texan ENT - November 2017



NOV 2017


As a kid, I always preferred the holidays where you got presents. I imagine a lot of us felt this way. Of course, things change as we grow up, and these days, Thanksgiving is by far my favorite. You get to enjoy a huge meal, and when my wife is in charge, you know every bite of that meal will be delicious. But beyond the food, Thanksgiving is a time when the people you love gather to spend time together. There’s a sense of gratitude, and everyone is happy to see each other. It’s the start of the holiday season, and you can really feel the spirit of the holiday. When I moved down to Austin in 2011, it was in early December, so I didn’t celebrate my first Thanksgiving in the Lone Star State until the following year. In the meantime, I met this amazing woman named Renee, who turned out to be my future wife. On Thanksgiving of 2012, Renee and I were still dating, and she decided we would host Thanksgiving dinner at our house. My First ThanksgivingWith Renee THE SECRET TO A PERFECT TURKEY

join us. It was a big step in our relationship, and there was quite a bit of pressure. Thanks to Renee, the whole thing went great! In addition to decorating the house, Renee took a cooking class at Whole Foods and learned how to prepare the ultimate Thanksgiving turkey. Growing up, my Thanksgiving turkeys were incredibly bland. We would drown it in gravy just to make it taste better. When Renee’s first turkey came out of the oven, it looked like it belonged on the cover of Better Homes and Gardens. She let it brine in homemade broth for 16 hours, rubbed a butter herb concoction beneath the skin, and let it roast to perfection. It was, hands down, the greatest turkey I’d ever eaten. The rest of the meal was also great, but I was more relieved that both families got along so well. Even better, my parents and sister loved Renee. I’m very close with my family, and it was important to me they liked my then-girlfriend. But really, what did I have to worry about? I already knew Renee was amazing, and my family quickly saw that, too. As far as Thanksgivings go, my first one in Texas is by far the most memorable. It signaled a new chapter in my relationship with Renee. Likewise, this next Thanksgiving will sort of signal the end of an old

For as long as I’ve known her, Renee has loved to go over-the-top with her parties. If she’s planning the event, you can bet it will be decked to the nines with the best spread and handmade decorations. During that first Thanksgiving, I was grateful for Renee’s planning enthusiasm. Not only did we have her family, but my parents and sister were also coming down from Virginia to

chapter. This will be the last Thanksgiving we celebrate just the two of us. Our little one is due at the end of December, and, to be honest, I wouldn’t mind if she came a bit early. I can’t wait to meet her, and having my daughter in my life is something I will be grateful for every Thanksgiving for years to come. –Dr. Seth Evans




If something sounds too good to be true, it probably is. But sometimes we stumble across a few hidden gems that make our lives easier. And, when it comes to cleaning house, we can all use a little “easier.” Check out these products you may have already written off and let them surprise you. DOLLAR STORE CLEANING PRODUCTS If you’ve ever ducked into the local dollar store to buy some Mylar balloons for your niece’s birthday party, you might have noticed the jugs and spray bottles, plastered with the word “Awesome.” Surely, this knock-off soap can’t work as well as your brand- name products, right? You’d be surprised. Online reviewers sing Awesome’s praises, suggesting it should really be a higher price for how well it works. Just make sure you wear gloves when you use it. DETERGENT PODS You use too much soap in your washing machine and dishwasher. At least, that’s what the New York Times reported as the No. 1 complaint from repair people and appliance experts. Modern appliances are designed to use less water, and as soap becomes more concentrated, using too much can damage your machine. That’s what makes detergent pods so handy. They don’t look like they can clean all your dishes or an entire load of clothes, but they actually provide the perfect amount for modern machines. You save money on detergent and machine repair! FOAM CLEANING BLOCKS Anything with “magic” in the title sounds like a scam. For this reason, you may have avoided the Mr. Clean Magic Eraser and similar melamine foam products. But this is one case where the product lives up to its wild claims. Melamine foam is abrasive and can break down and remove material from fine cracks and textures, making it an effective cleaner. It can be used to whiten sneakers, clean tub scum, and remove permanent marker from your fridge. Since the snake oil salesmen in the days of old first tricked trusting folks out of their hard-earned cash, consumers have wised up and are quick to write off perceived scams. Still, every now then you get lucky, and the cheap white sponge really does make the stove look like new. That Actually Work

NEVER CLEAN YOUR EARS AGAIN Can Cotton Swabs Damage Your Hearing? THERE’S AN OLD SAYING anyone with small children will be familiar with: Don’t put anything in your ear that’s smaller than your elbow. Pretty sound advice for getting kids to stop sticking jelly beans in their ears, but it’s not advice adults take to heart. After all, if you don’t stick something small, like a cotton swab, in your ear, how are you supposed to clean out the wax? The truth is, you shouldn’t remove the wax at all! The medical term for earwax is cerumen, and it exists to naturally clean your ears. The outer ⅓ of the ear canal produces a watery substance that mixes with bits of dead skin and hair to form wax. This wax has antibacterial properties, serving to protect and lubricate your ear. As you move your jaw when talking or chewing, the wax works its way through the canal, removing dirt, dust, and other foreign particles before falling out of your ear. Gross, but effective — unless you interrupt the process by shoving a cotton swab into your ear. Though you may see yellowish wax on the end of the cotton swab after you “clean” your ears, more earwax is being shoved backwards into your ear canal than is being removed. The wax gets stuck, creating a thick buildup which can block the ear canal, lead to hearing loss, or rupture your eardrum. Putting cotton swabs in your ears can also push fungus, bacteria, and viruses deeper into the ear, which may result in pain and infection. Every year, 12 million Americans go to the doctor’s office suffering from “impacted or excessive cerumen,” which is medical terminology for “bad earwax problems.” More often than not, these problems are the result of excessive cotton swab use and require the doctor to perform an earwax removal procedure. Our ears rarely need us to get involved with the cleaning process, but if you just can’t leave your ears alone, there are better options than a cotton swab. Drops of baby oil, mineral oil, or over-the-counter wax- softening products can be used to loosen earwax so it falls out more easily. At-home treatments are usually successful in removing excess wax, but if suspect earwax may be causing you problems, don’t try to get it out with a cotton swab. Call your doctor and learn how to safely address the problem without potentially damaging your ears.





ganglion. The sphenopalatine ganglion is part of the trigeminal nerve, which sends pain signals to the rest of your head and neck. By numbing the sphenopalatine ganglion, those signals are blocked and pain is alleviated. Research published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found this procedure provides genuine benefits. Patients treated with intranasal lidocaine were twice as likely to experience a 50 percent reduction in headaches within 15 minutes than patients who were treated with a saline placebo. Developed by Dr. Greenfield Sluder in 1909, doctors have used SGB to treat migraines and facial pain for over 100 patients. Traditionally, doctors use a long cotton swab inserted through the nose, or a needle stuck through a patient’s cheek, to administer lidocaine. At Texan ENT, we’ve brought the procedure into the 21st century, making it faster, more comfortable, and more effective. Equipped with an endoscope and lidocaine gel, the procedure takes less than one minute and causes only a temporary discomfort. Patients have been known to feel relief right away. While the numbing effect of lidocaine wears off after a few hours, the procedure can provide long-term benefits in the form of less frequent and less severe headaches. Nearly 90 percent of patients have experienced an increase in their quality of life with regular SGB produces. What’s more, the endoscopic SGB produces is covered by most insurance plans. If you struggle with debilitating migraines, why let yourself suffer another day? Learn more about how the sphenopalatine ganglion block can relieve the stress of migraines, headache, facial, and neck pain at texanent.com/ migraines.

Sphenopalatine Ganglion Block Treat Your Chronic Pain?

Those who never suffer from migraines might not understand how a headache can bring your day to a halt. Severe, throbbing pain radiates from your skull, making light and even sound painful, preventing you from accomplishing simple tasks. The World Health Organization reports that migraines are one of the top 20 causes of disability worldwide. If migraines are destroying your quality of life, then you need to learn about an effective product for treating facial pain that takes less time than reading this article: the sphenopalatine ganglion block (SGB). In this procedure, lidocaine, a numbing medication, is administered to a bundle of nerves in the back of the nose called the sphenopalatine


Brussels Sprouts With Sausage Looking for an easy, delicious Thanksgiving side dish? This gem requires only a few ingredients.


Recipe courtesy of InTheKitchenWithKath.com.

• •

1½ pounds Brussels sprouts

Salt and pepper

• •

2 tablespoons olive oil

½ cup water

31/3 ounces fresh, hot Italian sausage


Cook, stirring just once or twice, for a couple more minutes. The liquid should evaporate, and the sprouts should start to brown. 5. Add more salt and pepper to taste. Serve hot or warm.

pepper. Cover and cook 10 minutes or until just tender. Check them periodically and add a bit more water, if necessary. 4. When sprouts are just about done, remove cover and raise heat to medium-high.

1. Trim sprouts and cut in half. 2. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add sausage and cook, stirring occasionally, 3–5 minutes. 3. Add sprouts to skillet. Add ½ cup water. Add salt and




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INSIDE THIS ISSUE: Page 1 The Secret to a Perfect Turkey

Page 2 These Products Make Housework Easier!

Page 2 WhyYou Need to ThrowOut Your Cotton Swabs

Page 3 The Secret to Migraine Relief in 1 Minute

Page 3 Brussels SproutsWith Sausage

Page 4 Iconic Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade Balloons

Hours: Monday-Thursday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. | Friday 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Iconic Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade Balloons

SNOOPY When it comes to balloon characters, none is more famous than the classic “Peanuts” beagle. His first balloon floated through the sky in 1968, and he’s been a regular fixture ever since. Charles Schultz’s famous pooch holds the record for most variations in a parade (eight) and most total appearances (40). Though Snoopy doesn’t come out every year, he usually closes the show when he does. PIKACHU The Pokémon mascot didn’t appear until 2001, but he’s become a star attraction, showing up every year since. Bright, expressive, and impossible to miss, Pikachu checks off all the boxes for a successful balloon character. For 16 years, those who predicted that Pokémon was just a fad have gotten a big, yellow reminder of just how wrong they were.

Thanksgiving is a holiday full of traditions, from turkey and stuffing to football and naps. Since 1924, the Macy’s Parade has grown to become not only a Thanksgiving staple but also the world’s largest parade. Over 3.5 million people attended the parade last year, with another 20 million tuning in from home. The main attraction is always the massive character balloons, which first graced the skies in 1927. Over the decades, some of these balloons have become nearly as famous as the character they depict. FELIX THE CAT When the Felix the Cat balloon appeared in 1931, it set the standard for all characters to follow. Sadly, the original balloon got tangled in wires and caught on fire, so it has been lost to history. Felix’s influence on the parade is so immense, however, that when Macy’s brought him back in 2016 for the parade’s 90th anniversary, they recreated his original design. Without Felix’s debut, the parade might look a lot different today.

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