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Health and Wellness in Atlanta

health and wellnessIt is said that the mouth is the window to the body, and I can tell you today that is more true than we once thought. I have been looking inside mouths since 1981, and as a dentist I can tell so much about my patients by just looking inside their oral cavity. My philosophy is simple. The health of your body is the most important aspect to your life, and it begins with what you put inside it. We as Americans are on the average very unhealthy. According to the April 25 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine only 3% of adult Americans are considered healthy (based on 4 factors, 1. Non-smokers 2. Eat enough fruit and vegetables 3. Maintain a proper body weight 4. Exercise at least 5 times per week.)

Health care costs are rising because Americans do not take responsibility for their own health. People may be living longer, only because modern medicine is keeping them alive. The baby boomers make up the largest segment of the population and health care costs are rising so fast that it absolutely is a huge problem is our country. Doctors are not paid to prevent disease, only to treat it. The latest statistics are:

Adults are unhealthy

  • 1,500 of us die from cancer every day
  • 1 in 3 women and 1 in 2 men will have cancer in his or her lifetime
  • 1 in 8 American women will be diagnosed with breast cancer
  • Heart disease kills more women than breast cancer
  • 1.1 Million Americas have a heart attack every year
  • 500,000 heart attack victims in America die each year
  • 23% of Americans have hypertension
  • Americans spend $330 billion per year on heart disease
  • 64% of U.S. adults are overweight or obese
  • Diabetes will increase by 165% over the next 50 years, with 29 million Americans diagnosed
  • 33% of Americans suffer from arthritis

Our children are unhealthy too!

  • Cancer kills more children than any other disease
  • By age 3, children have fatty deposits in their arteries
  • By age 12, 70% have developed beginning stages of hardening of the arteries
  • 1 in 4 children are obese
  • Obesity has doubled in the last 20 years
  • Nearly 50% of obese adolescents remain obese as adults
  • In the last 20 years, type 2 diabetes has increased 10 fold!
  • Over 8 million children have asthma, up 232% in the last 40 years
  • 7% of school age children are diagnosed as ADHD
  • Less than 7% of children and adolescents consume the recommended 2 servings of fruit and 3 servings of vegetables per day

Dental cavities are the most common, chronic disease and we see that still everyday. Sugar is everywhere and Americans consume it at an alarming rate. This leads not only to dental cavities, but obesity and diabetes. 50 % of children under the age of 10 have at least one cavity and it has been calculated that more than 51 million school hours each year are lost due to dental-related illnesses.

60% of adults have periodontal disease and recent research shows the link between gum disease and an increase risk for premature births, heart and lung disease, strokes and poorly controlled diabetes.

Oral health is linked to head and neck cancer which kills one American per hour. Researchers are looking at the link between the HPV virus and oral cancer, and ways to diagnose breast cancer through saliva.

Diet and exercise are the most important aspects of your health. You are what you eat!!! We need between 9 and 13 fresh fruits and vegetables a day. We need to exercise 5 to 6 times a week. This has to become a way of life, I believe in prevention and prolongment of disease. I speak to my patients all day long about this. I know when I see an overweight patient that there are multifactorial issues going on. I can recommend the proper medical doctors and trainers that can help you achieve the results you want. I practice what I preach, I inform and try to become the gatekeeper for my patients to have more successful and fulfilling lives.

A beautiful smile is an asset to health. The more we smile, the more endorphins are released. This helps with self-esteem and increased attitudes which can lead to more success in our everyday lives. I have witnessed from my practice in dentistry people that are so ashamed to smile, they cover their mouths when they speak, men will grow a mustache to cover up their teeth. With today’s incredible technology there is no reason not to love your smile. People will spend thousands on a car that they will only drive for five years, and leave it parked all day and night, but your smile goes with you wherever you go, and a beautiful smile does change people’s lives. After I finish a cosmetic case I receive so much joy to see a patient return, with a new hair cut, shaven face, and a totally new look and attitude!