South Windsor Smiles - February 2020

February 2020

We Promote Optimum Health All Month Long

February is a pretty big month for us here at SouthWindsor Smiles. Not only is it the time of year for Valentine’s Day, but it’s also National Heart Health Month and National Children’s Dental Health Month. Of all the months of the year, February is the best time to think about and promote oral and overall health. Over the years, my team and I have worked hard to spread awareness to the significant connections between oral health and the rest of the body. Many people view the body and the mouth separately, without realizing how much they’re actually connected. But we have a saying here in the office: “There is no such thing as a mouth coming into our office.The rest of the body comes too.” The mouth is connected to the body, and what happens there impacts everything else. When adult patients come into the office, we not only clean their teeth but also test their blood pressure and the carbon dioxide levels in their blood. Through these additional services and checkups, we ensure our patients receive the best care for both dental and overall health. For National Heart Health Month, we make an effort to spread awareness as much as we can. Our office is associated with the American Heart Association, and we participate in runs and walks and even encourage people to exercise more, all in effort to ensure overall health. Almost anything we can do to get people talking, we’ll do it, which also supports National Children’s Dental Health Month.

Throughout February, our team heads to area elementary schools and day cares to present what we know about health and review important steps for taking care of the mouth and teeth. Alongside kids, we talk about the best foods to eat, how to properly brush and floss, and even what toothpaste to use. Of course, these initiatives are alive and well within our office too. Our doctors and hygienists take every opportunity to stop and talk to patients who might be experiencing a health problem.We hand out several books in the office to our patients to help them understand connections between oral health and the rest of the body.We want to ensure they know what steps they should take to achieve optimum health.

But we have a saying here in the office: ‘There is no such thing as a mouth coming into our office. The rest of the body comes too.’

Our team cares about patient health, and this is one of the times we can express that care in more ways than one. Sadly, February is the shortest month of the year, which means both of these national holidays don’t last as long as we’d like. However, that doesn’t mean we’ll stop promoting and looking out for every person’s health. We’ll be at it for the entire year, ensuring you and your loved ones are happy and healthy year after year.

–Dr. Kevin Norige


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On Oct. 28 last year, President DonaldTrump tweeted a photo that quickly went viral. It showed an adorable snapshot of a bright-eyed Belgian Malinois, tongue lolling, still wearing its camo military vest. In the caption, PresidentTrump explained that the pup, Conan, was a national hero who was instrumental in taking down ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. With four years in special operations forces and roughly 50 missions under his collar, Conan was selected to be part of the team that pursued al-Baghdadi through a network of underground tunnels in northwest Syria, where the terrorist ultimately died. It’s unclear whether Conan was there to track al-Baghdadi or to spot improvised explosive devices that may have been planted on the route, but either way, he performed well. According to NBC News, Conan was injured by some live electrical cables during the mission, but he recovered quickly and was back on duty within the week. Meanwhile, PresidentTrump invited the brave pup to theWhite House and tweeted out a doctored photo that showed him awarding Conan a Medal of Honor. THE DOG WHO HELPED TAKE DOWN AL-BAGHDADI Meet Conan

PresidentTrump captioned the photo “AMERICAN HERO!” and he’s not alone in his appreciation for the hardworking dogs that have been helping our military since World War II. “To me, they’re the first line of defense,” United StatesWar Dogs Association President Ron Aiello told Vox after the news about Conan came out. “They’re such a great asset to our military today.” Military dogs are put up for adoption after 6–8 years in the service, which means a lucky civilian could take Conan in as early as 2022! Meanwhile, dozens of other smart canine heroes are looking for homes.To learn more about military and other working dog adoptions, visit

Let’s Have Some Fun This Winter!

Get Out of the House and Into the Cold

February means we’re now in the middle of the winter season, and despite what some may say, it’s one of the best times to get outside. It’s easy to stay indoors to avoid the cold, snow, and ice, but it’s important to get outside every now and then for some fresh air. Here are a few ideas to help you out of the house. INTOTHE SNOW One of the best ways to have fun with family and friends is playing in the snow. Head to the nearest park to build a snowman, make a few snow angels, or have a snowball fight. Challenge yourself by building an igloo, either for cover from the elements or just for fun. SLEDS, SKIS, AND SNOWBOARDS — OH MY! Another way to enjoy the snow is to head to the nearest slopes with your sleds, skis, and snowboards. Pack the car with your loved ones and spend a day with your favorite winter activity on your nearest hill or mountain. Alternatively, grab your skates and visit the nearest ice rink for a few hours of skating.

BUNDLING UP FOR A SHORTWALK Winter is beautiful, but the cold often keeps us from enjoying it.This year, wrap yourself up in a few layers and head out for a short walk to really appreciate the beauty of the season. Spring is just around the corner, and a walk will give you a firsthand view of early spring. Keep an eye and an ear out for chirping birds and early spring buds. HEALTHYTIPS While you’re out having fun, remember to dress appropriately for the weather and drink plenty of water. Staying hydrated is important, especially during the winter because our body works harder to keep us warm, meaning we become dehydrated faster. Even though winter is here, there is plenty of time to get outside. Winter has a lot to offer all of us; we just have to make the most of it. Let’s get out and have some fun!

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Providing a Wealth of Information

Knowing the Connection Between the Mouth and Body

When our patients want to learn about potential health issues and the solutions to fix them, our team is more than happy to help. We give out three books to our patients and their family, friends, and loved ones. These books describe the connection between the mouth and the body and the impact both have on each other.

have the knowledge and skills to notice the first signs of sleep apnea that other doctors might not. Our goal is to help people breathe and sleep better throughout the night, and this book explains how we accomplish that.

‘SIX-FOOTTIGER,THREE-FOOT CAGE’ BY FELIX LIAO This is an important book to read for learning about the connection between the mouth and sleep. Liao’s book title doesn’t refer to an actual tiger nor a cage. In this instance, the mouth is the 3-foot cage, and the tongue is the 6-foot tiger. When the tongue is too large for the mouth, the only place it can go during sleep is the throat, which causes obstructive sleep apnea.

‘BEATTHE HEART ATTACK GENE’ BY AMY DONEEN AND BRADLEY BALE In this book, Doneen and Bale discuss the significance of ensuring the mouth is in good health for the benefit of overall health. If the mouth isn’t taken care of, for example, it can become inflamed. Once this happens, it can affect the rest of the body, leading to increased risks for heart attacks and strokes.These chapters

In his book, Liao writes about the cutting-edge technology that helps dentists treat this problem and give our patients a good night’s sleep.

talk in depth about what to look for regarding your own health, what to expect in treatment, and the benefits of going to a dentist for overall health. Additionally, at the end of Chapter 1, there is a 25-question assessment readers can fill out themselves.

If you are interested in reading one of these books or want to share one with a family member or loved one, call our office at 860-787-5832.

‘GASP: AIRWAY HEALTH’ BY DR. HOWARD HINDIN AND DR. MICHAEL GELB These two practicing dentists came together to provide their readers with a wealth of knowledge on how dentists and hygienists can assess the potential for obstructive sleep apnea. Professional dentists


Puzzle Your Brain


i ngred i ents

Inspired byThe Minimalist Baker

1/4 cup peanut butter

1 lb medjool dates, pitted (about 1 1/2 cups)

1 cup bittersweet or dark chocolate, chopped

1/2 tsp sea salt

1 tbsp coconut oil, melted

Warm water

d i rect i ons

1. Using a food processor, blend dates and sea salt until dough can be formed into a ball. Slowly add enough warm water to mixture to thicken dough. 2. Roll dough into tablespoon-sized balls. Freeze for 20–30 minutes. 3. In microwave, warm 1/4 cup peanut butter for 30 seconds, then drizzle peanut butter on top of balls. Freeze balls for another 20 minutes. 4. Meanwhile, in microwave, warm chocolate with coconut oil until melted. Stir well. 5. Coat balls in chocolate and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet. 6. Top with additional salt and freeze for 30 minutes. Serve at room temperature.

P ublished by T he newsletter P ro | www .T he N ewsletter P ro . com



112 Deming St. SouthWindsor, CT 06074



th i s i ssue

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A Month Dedicated to Heart and Health

Meet the Dog Who Helped Take Down al-Baghdadi Have Fun With Old Man Winter


A 6-Foot Tiger Trapped in a 3-Foot Cage Date Truffles


Famous Tongue Twisters and Their Origins

Peter Piper Did What?

The Little-Known Origins of Common Tongue Twisters

Tongue twisters are a highlight of many people’s childhoods and are also highly entertaining for many adults. Having the ability to say “Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers” without stumbling or stuttering can earn you several impressed stares. However, as fun as they are to say, not very many people know the history behind our favorite tongue twisters.

near her home.To support her family, Mary sold her finds to people, including the fossils of the ichthyosaur, the plesiosaur, and the pterosaur.Though her constant scouring of the shores inspiredTerry Sullivan’s “She Sells Sea Shells” song, Mary’s more prominent fossil discoveries went mostly unrecognized.

HOW MUCHWOOD: FayTempleton, Performer

PETER PIPER: Pierre Poivre, Gardener

Of the many tongue twisters in the world, “How MuchWood Could aWoodchuck Chuck” is a real favorite.This rhyme was introduced to the public through the musical “The Runaways” in a song performed by FayTempleton in 1903. Most people pay little attention to the origin of the tongue

Although it is not known for sure, Peter Piper and his pickled peppers are speculated to be inspired by a French horticulturist, Pierre Poivre.Throughout the 18th century, it’s said that Pierre would smuggle cloves out of the Dutch East India Company- controlled Spice Islands. He then grew them on his own, which then led to freeing the market for future cloves.

twister and instead spend more time trying to answer it. In the 20th century, a NewYork fish and wildlife technician named RichardThomas put some thought into it and declared the answer is 700 pounds.

SHE SELLS SEASHELLS: Mary Anning, Fossil Discoverer

The popular beach-themed tongue twister, “She sells seashells by the seashore,” was inspired by groundbreaking discoverer Mary Anning. Mary was a woman living in the 19th century who collected rocks, seashells, and even fossils on the rocky shores

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