The Importance of Deep Sleep

There are many different treatment modalities for OSA (obstructive sleep apnea).  It is well documented that over 40% of CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) owners are non-compliant and 17% of people that are diagnosed with OSA refuse to even consider CPAP therapy.  Here at Advanced Oral Diagnosis and Treatment Center (AODTC), we find a much higher rate of compliance with dental appliances for OSA.

It is extremely important that OSA be treated and that your sleep hygiene is in such order that deep (delta sleep) is achieved.  Delta is usually associated with deep, slow-wave sleep, where the body is at total rest. This allows a very important phenomenon to occur promoting the health of the brain.

Among our neurons are Glial cells of which there are several varieties, one of which has a special purpose to protect the other cells from damage, much like how styrofoam protects fine crystal in a box.  Once the body ceases to have strong movement, these cells shrink to one tenth their size, thus allowing fluids to be exchanged and the brain to be cleansed of debris, such as dead cells, cellular waste, and harmful chemicals like MSG and accutane. This could easily explain the 200% increased chance of developing Alzheimer’s when OSA is not corrected.

Earlier I mentioned sleep hygiene.  There are many factors that interfere with sleep in addition to OSA. For millions of years, when the sun went down, all we had for a light source was fire, which stimulates the production of melatonin, the opposite of serotonin. Now we have blue light in the form of TV, cell phones, computers, games and fluorescent lights. Between smart meters and wifi we are now flooded with EMF (Electromagnetic Frequency), which has also been found to mess up your sleep hygiene.

Eating too soon before bed can also cause poor sleep, especially if alcohol or sugar are added. In an earlier ALIVE article I mentioned that lights ought to be removed from soccer fields so that kids can get a family dinner with conversation, and achieve healthy sleep. It’s frightening to think what the youth of today may face in the form of mental health, as they age due to these many modern abuses.

I am fortunate to belong to several medically-oriented societies—especially alternative medicine—and I see a shift happening today in the medical community toward considering our evolution and ancient history more seriously in terms of health. Changing dietary, lifestyle and family practices, among other rituals, can have disastrous consequences. There was a lot of very useful knowledge in Plato’s time and before, that would serve present day man quite well.

At AODTC all of our methods come from a holistic approach.  Our results demonstrate the benefits.  For more information please visit www.aodtc.com.

 

 

 

Magnesium Deficiency

ELUSIVE MAGNESIUM: VERY FEW OF US ARE NOT DEFICIENT

At UC Berkeley my major was in Physiology—a field I have followed ever since.  If you have read much of my previous articles, you know that in both my sleep apnea and TMJ practices I take a very holistic approach to health maintenance. The pharmaceutical approach is like giving a pain killer for a thorn in your foot; you help the symptom, but the damage progresses.

Over seventy years ago, US Health authorities warned our country that, due to not replenishing the minerals in the soil, there would likely become mineral deficiency health problems.  It has happened.  One of the most serious mineral deficiencies is Magnesium (Mg).  Due to the fact that only 1% of Mg is found in the blood, most doctors are not trained to test for it, and in most cases normal supplements don’t make up for this deficiency.

I belong to several physiology research organizations and try to stay up on what’s new.  According to Norman Shealy, MD, PhD, a holistic pain and depression specialist, “Magnesium deficiency contributes to every known disease – from anxiety to depression, cancer, atherosclerosis, fatigue, hypertension, etc.”

Magnesium is responsible in a large part for the support of:

  • Blood sugar balance
  • Optimal circulation and blood pressure
  • Cellular energy production
  • Calming nerves and relieving headaches
  • Pain relief and muscle relaxation
  • Bone density and calcium balance
  • Joints and ligament flexibility
  • Promoting deep sleep
  • Supporting optimal cognition and strengthening memory
  • Regulating mood and stress and anxiety
  • Assisting in detoxification
  • Relieving cramping of muscles, leg cramps in your sleep and menstrual cramps

WHAT CAN YOU DO?

I have been recommending that my patients supplement with chelated or colloidal Mg with mixed results, sometimes great.  There are some foods that contain higher concentrations of Mg which include; sprouted nuts and seeds, avocados, sprouted legumes, pink salt, sea vegetables, wild fish, raw cacao, pumpkin seeds and raw green and leafy veggies and pastured eggs.  Of course all these foods need soil that contains Mg, in the first place.

For arthritis relief, chronic muscle and ligament pain, and menstrual cramps, a transdermal application using a Mg oil spray works best.  For increasing Mg absorption, the most recent research revealed Mg L-Threonate was the best. Amazon carries it. Only buy the best because some of the dishonest companies use contaminated sources.  It is possible to overdose with Mg causing some nasty symptoms, so check with your heath care professional to find the appropriate dosage for your body.

 

 

 

Sugar: Health Enemy #1

I always like to look back at our evolution to test what “modern medicine” has come up with. Many of the scientific findings today come from junk science and basing medical protocols on their findings can be fatal. Because of junk science findings, sponsored by sugar industry bribes, sugar has not been condemned as the poison it is.

Let’s go back to before the development of present day farming and distribution.  Our only source of sugar was primitive fruits and berries, which were warm season treats. Even then they weren’t refined. Humans get their energy from sugars, fats and proteins.  Cancer can only use sugar for its energy and dies without it.  Thus, our primitive winter diet resulted in the death of almost all cancers in the human body. 

Sugar also ranks high on the inflammatory index of foods. In other words, eating sugar puts your body in condition of inflammation, and as it turns out, inflammation is the single most important cause of nearly all diseases.  So, instead of winter being a healthy season, it becomes the flu season plus whatever other diseases we invite in.  Then, when you add empty-calorie junk food to inflammatory foods and poisonous additives, the immune system is left without the resources to fight back.

If this is not enough to get your attention, maybe vanity might bring some sense to the irresponsible.  Crap food interferes with proper digestion causing fewer nutrients and healthy candida yeasts, resulting in more of the products to be stored as fat. Using vanity even further, bad foods create bad complexion, accelerated aging of the skin, and accelerated aging of the body.

To sum it all up, our irresponsible eating habits are taking away any chance of having a long, healthy, active and fulfilling life. The irresponsible have a saying: “Youth is wasted on the young,” when the truth is, we can continue to have youthful bodies and minds as long as we live responsibly and care for ourselves.

Another killer I have found in my practice that can seriously decrease the quality and length of life is legal, iatrogenic (medically caused) drug abuse.  I use no drugs in my pain clinic and many times find that the patient’s pain is due to the side effects of prescriptive and over the counter drugs.  The present popularity of treating the symptom and not the patient is resulting in not only the masking of possibly serious symptoms, but the creation of other health problems due to side effects, which almost all drugs have.

It is time that all of us, especially the medical industry, drop greed from our treatment plan and realize the magnificence of God’s creations and concentrate on what can be done to stimulate and encourage the body’s ability to heal itself.

Getting back to my first point: many f these problems would not exist without sugar!

 

What About that Pain or Sound in Your Jaw?

For years we called it TMJ (temporomandibular joint) but now we refer to it as TMD or temporomandibular joint dysfunction which is certainly more descriptive of why treatment is necessary.

There is much confusion in the field of TMD, many times leading to incredibly expensive and unnecessary, sometimes invasive dental treatments. In previous articles I have reviewed many of these protocols from the use of electromyography, to pharmaceuticals, to full mouth reconstruction or even surgery.

In this article I want to share what you can do to help your TMD and what to avoid in order to prevent damage to this very complex joint. First, we can take a look at what makes up the TMJ. It is composed of the glenoid fossa of the temporal bone, the condylar head of the mandible, an articular disc and articular capsule. The purpose of the disc is to prevent bone to bone contact and, when functioning correctly, the disc and capsule provide a smooth, well lubricated, rotation and translation of the joint. 

The elastic ligaments associated with the capsule are responsible for keeping the disc in place. Excessive stretching, like opening too wide to yawn, taking a big bite of a sandwich, or singing can stretch or even tear these structures. The disc then is allowed to become displaced, many times not returning back when the condyle reseats itself in the fossa. When the patient then opens their mouth, the condyle has to bounce over the back of the displaced disc, resulting in a popping sound, sometimes accompanied by pain and limited opening or a feeling that one’s bite is misaligned.

This pain is due to inflammation of the stretched or torn ligaments. When the disc continues to be displaced, or if clenching wears a hole in the disc, the condyle and fossa begin to touch, resulting in a sandy or gravely sound as the joint moves. At this point, arthritis and degeneration can develop.

What can you do to help? 

  • Like any other joint, over use can be abuse, such as chewing gum.
  • Regularly patients show me their pop by moving the jaw laterally. Never do anything on purpose to cause a pop! Lateral jaw movement is not what the jaw was designed to do.
  • Learn to hide your yawns like you are in the front row of an important class.
  • Eat smaller bites and avoid big sandwiches.
  • Avoid hard, tough or crunchy foods, such as nuts, ice or beef jerky.
  • Never check to see if the popping is still there. If the joint is quiet, it is getting better.
  • Stress is a major factor causing us to keep our teeth together (clenching or grinding). Teeth are only supposed to meet when swallowing, as little as one minute per hour. Learning to control the stress in your life will help. My next article will address this subject.
  • Learn to follow an anti inflammatory diet. Google it.
  • If you are prescribed drugs, check out the side effects. You may possibly get professional help to correct what causes the need for that drug. Many of my patients are experiencing a greatly improved life by doing this.
  • Schedule a free consultation with my office. I treat TMD differently than most dentists. If needed, I make a custom appliance, in office, fit specifically to your bite, not made by an outside lab.

Don’t let the dysfunction and pain get out of control before you seek help. Occasionally I find something quite simple that is causing the problem.

 

 

Question Drugs for Depression

Quite often, patients are referred to me that are already taking prescriptions for pain, headaches and the depression that goes along with these chronic conditions. Those of you who follow my articles know I feel that most drugs treat symptoms, not patients, and in some cases they may also be delaying diagnosis of a serious underlying condition.

When asked, none of the patients taking antidepressants have been given tests that evaluate nutritional levels, yet lack of some nutrients can cause many problems, including depression.  The following are just a few nutrients, the lack of which, can cause depression: Omega-3 fatty acids, Vitamin D, Magnesium, Vitamin B complex, Foliate, Amino acids, Iron,  Zinc, Iodine and Selenium. 

Needless to say, these deficiencies can and do have other, sometimes serious, consequences. Thus, in many cases, in the doctor’s rush to get you out the door with a prescription rather than attempt to improve your all over health and even prevent a stroke or heart problems, an opportunity has been missed. To make matters worse, some of the TCI’s (tricyclic anti depressants), like Nortriptyline and Dexepin, actually have the side effect of a serious heart condition called tachycardia. For example, I have a patient on two TCI’s who recently spent several days in the hospital to treat tachycardia and was sent home with another prescription for a drug to treat tachycardia.  

The other family of antidepressants is SSRI’s, Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibiters (Lexapro, Prozac, Zoloft and more). All of these have potentially serious side effects, especially when the patient is pregnant. To make the situation even worse, the presence of drugs in the patient can actually cause some of the symptoms and interfere with my ability to effectively control them. 

My ultimate goal is to move the patient toward optimal health through diet, lifestyle changes, and supplementation. An example of the need for supplementation is the lack of minerals in our food. The farms rarely, if ever, replace them.

In spite of the resistance and pressure from the pharmaceutical industry and the FDA, new fields of medicine are developing, some redeveloping after 100 years, such as Integrative Medicine, Naturopathic Medicine and Anti Aging Medicine that treat patients, not symptoms. Though I am fully licensed to, I have not written a prescription in years. As a result, today my patients improve faster than when I did. 

As I stated in previous articles, this method of holistic treatment has very serious side effects: a seriously improved all over health and a vitality that can last far beyond what present society thinks is possible.

Quality Sleep: A Must for Good Health

HOW MUCH SLEEP IS RECOMMENDED? 

Infants 12-17 hours

Toddlers (1-2) 11 – 14 hours

Preschoolers (3-5) 10 – 13 hours

School Age (6-13) 9-11 hours

Teens (14-17) 8-10 hours

Adults (18-64) 7-9 hours

Older Adult (65+) 7-8 hours

The above recommendations assume that the quality of sleep is good, but in many cases it is not. Lack of sleep, or poor quality of sleep, can be dangerous, causing car accidents or job related injuries due to the slowing of your reaction time; relationship problems; poor job performance; memory loss; health issues and mood disorders. Lack of quality sleep contributes to heart disease, obesity, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, cancer and many more ailments.

WHAT CAUSES POOR QUALITY SLEEP?

  • Bad habits: Do you have irregular bedtimes? Do you drink caffeine drinks late in the afternoon or evening? Do you smoke or consume alcohol in the evening? Do you fall asleep with the TV on?  Do you allow time for digestion after dinner?
  • Mental Health: Depression, anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder and the drugs used to treat these problems can all take away your ZZZZs.
  • Health problems: Chronic pain, arthritis, GERD, heart failure, thyroid problems, neurological disorders, hormonal imbalances and many medications can all interfere with sleep. Malnutrition can also play a role such as magnesium deficiency which can cause depression, mood changes and stress- like symptoms.
  • Sleep apnea and Restless Leg Syndrome: Not only seriously effects quantity and quality of sleep for the victim, but can also affect others.

WHAT CAN YOU DO?

  • Turn off the Tube. Additionally, video games and surfing the net late in the evening promote the “stay awake” mechanisms of the body.
  • Employ Bedtime Rituals. A warm bath and a book, a regular bedtime, peaceful music, learn relaxation techniques and meditation.
  • Exercise regularly, preferably not just before bedtime.
  • See your doctor. A sleep diary can help by keeping track of your bedtimes and waking hours, how long and well you slept, amount of waking times and how long you stayed awake, your emotions and stress level and a list of medications you take. 
  • There are several types of therapy available such as Relaxation Training, biofeedback to help control breathing, heart rate, muscle control and mood and cognitive-behavioral therapy to ease worries.
  • Ask your doctor for a sleep test. Sleep apnea is treatable by applying a CPAP or dental sleep appliance.  The change experienced, from the return of youthful energy and the return of memory, to better health and more, can all be as a result of correcting sleep problems.

At my office, the Advanced Oral Diagnosis and Treatment Center in Danville, we have delivered hundreds of dental sleep appliances with an amazing rate of success. Most medical insurances cover dental appliances for obstructive sleep apnea.  Contact us today to learn more: www.aodtc.com and 925-837-8048.

Is Modern Medicine a Blessing or a Curse?

We all understand that diet and lifestyle are immensely important for a healthy life, yet many of us seem to go out of our way to close our eyes, shut off our minds, and avoid our responsibilities. One very big factor is that we can go to the doctor and get something to cover the symptom or kill the germ that we have invited into our body.  Some might reply, “I don’t invite germs into my body,” but that is exactly what you do when you get lazy or splurge with unhealthy foods.

The germ theory of disease is incorrect. If germs caused disease all by themselves, we would all be sick. The plagues of the past would have killed everyone. As science is finally admitting, inflammation can be the initial cause of most diseases. In addition, inflammation in one area of your body can focus your immune system on that area, allowing neglect and degeneration in another area, thus opening the door and giving an invitation to whatever germ may be around. Malnutrition can greatly affect the immune system, further exacerbating the problem.

Malnutrition can occur in the midst of plenty. Sugar, rice, and alcohol deplete the B vitamins bringing on cirrhosis and diabetes. Instead of changing to nutritious foods we grab a handful of supplements hoping to cover the effects of our destructive behavior.

When properly cared for, our bodies are magnificent and quite capable of remaining in wonderful health and vitality to a very old age.  Medicine’s habit of suggesting pills with side effects that should frighten most, just to relieve a symptom, is an insult.  I have had patients with as many as 25 prescriptions causing unbelievable side effects and degeneration.

There are many populations that do not have access to modern medicine. They eat nutritiously, haven’t heard of cancer and live to be quite old; in some cases over 100 years with no doctors to help. One ugly side effect of current practices is that these procedures are creating a whole population of elderly that are not healthy and are suffering multiple disabilities, such as hearing loss, loss of eyesight, arthritis, cancer, diabetes and many other problems that likely could have been avoided.

One of the benefits my patients have is, I too, have suffered.  I used to take a medication to cover an illness while I had my stack of pancakes, cake and ice cream. My enthusiasm comes from no longer having arthritis, psoriasis, allergies or colds.  My diet and lifestyle changes have resulted in the best health of my life with better memory, good hearing and good eyesight, without even one medication. 

Many of my patients have followed my recommendations and are also experiencing similar results. As I mentioned in previous articles, we are now entering the so called flu season. It is more correctly called the deplorable diet season. Those flu bugs would love to share the holidays with you and your family, but you must invite them in.

 

Treat the Patient, Not Just the Symtoms

My patients greatly benefit from my pain. I learned the hard way. I have had heart surgery, hip replacement surgery and all kinds of medications, not to mention suggestions of further surgical procedures. I have been misdiagnosed to the point I had a near death experience. Finally I came to the realization that “modern medicine” is little more than a Hollywood term. A true doctor is one who is humble and constantly seeking more knowledge. Most think the “standard of care” is all that they must follow. Our government admits that the “standard of care” is responsible for at least 250,000 deaths a year (it’s much more).

My goal is to help you deeply understand that YOU can take control of your health and vitality – I DID!  In my book, WHY: The Question That Could Save Your Life, I emphasize the need for you to become informed and precisely WHY. Our bodies are very capable of healing, if we allow it to happen. We prevent the healing processes by literally eating poisons and/or abusing ourselves with stress.

In my case I used to eat like everyone else, and I suffered like everyone else. About ten years ago I did what I now tell my patients to do: I changed my diet and lifestyle (I mostly follow a Paleo diet); I take supplements and exercise with guidance. I am now experiencing the best health of my life with no allergies, am never sick, have no arthritis and a great, healthy heart. Not to mention people tell me that I look ten years younger, (but I feel 40 years younger).  Friends that have not seen me for years ask me how I do it and I am helping them.

My point here is not to brag, but to emphasize that my methods of relieving pain in my practice, without drugs, have the side effects of better health. For years dentistry has been treating “TMJ” as a dental problem. If that were true, almost everyone would have “TMJ” problems. At my office we treat patients, not symptoms. Occasionally, once all symptoms are arrested, a minor adjustment to the teeth may be necessary. Often, because we treat the patient, much more than just TMJ problems are helped. Many times the patient is off drugs for the first time in years. This should be the goal of all doctors.

Occasionally I speak before other professionals and surprise them when I say the most important medical book I have read is, How to Win Friends and Influence People, by Dale Carnegie. If one looks at his worst medical experiences, the doctor was not friendly and/or did not care enough.  In holistic medicine, the confidence of the patient in knowing the doctor cares is of extreme importance because cooperation at home is critical as are the doctor’s additional suggestions.

At AODTC, we treat the patient, not the symptom, which not only makes for great results but lasting relationships. If you are suffering from TMD (temporomandibular joint dysfunction) or sleep apnea we can help. For a free consultation or for more information please visit www.aodtc.com or call 925-837-8048.

 

 

Ego vs Progress, Continued

Scientific research, in its pure form, is magnificent. It has no predetermined outcome and is conducted by individuals who are totally open to new and different information. Medicine at its best is quite similar in as much as the doctor should not be prejudiced and should always have an open mind, quickly recognizing that the diagnosis may be incorrect, and a new approach or specialist be considered.

In both of the above examples, throw in EGO along with a memorized protocol to a misconceived initial idea or diagnosis and you have a very common result: failure and/or lack of progress.

Looking back in history there exist classic examples of egotistical attitudes severely slowing growth in both physics and medicine. Around the end of the 19th Century, Max Planck was one of the earliest scientists to propose what came to be known as Quantum Physics. Other greats like Einstein and Tesla got involved as well. To this day their ideas are challenged. One resulted in the world being prevented from having free, pollution-free electricity, a Tesla invention.  Because of the better understanding of magnetism and electricity, a doctor by the name of Albert Abrams, a Stanford professor, began a study of the electricity and magnetic fields created in the human body.

One of Abram’s inventions was the “Reflexophone” that detected disturbances in magnetic fields that could identify not only the disease, but, in some cases, the cure.  He used this tool and accurately detected the presence of syphilis in the director of the medical school at Stanford. Due to his ideas being so outside of the norm, he was labeled a quack by the American Medical Association.

Today Abram’s work is reappearing in Europe with instruments that can detect, and sometimes cure or prevent diseases. It seems that a malfunction of an organ can create a situation that brings on a disease and this malfunction can be detected.  Once detected, there is a chance that immune system and other factors can be concentrated into that area to correct that condition.

The egotists never were able to stop Quantum Physics, even though in many cases it does not appear logical.  Our brains are not there yet. A famous physicist, Micho Kaku, said, “It is often stated that of all the theories proposed in the 20th Century, the silliest is quantum theory. Some say the only thing that quantum theory has going for it, in fact, is that it is unquestionably correct.”

Why should a doctor specializing in Dental Sleep Medicine, Pain and TMD be concerned about the above history?  I am sick and tired of doctors throwing pills at undiagnosed diseases, causing prolonged, needless, secondary diseases and suffering.  As the old saying goes, he who does not study history is destined to repeat it. If medicine is to progress, research must be performed by purely scientific methods, not guided by profit.

At Advanced Oral Diagnosis & Treatment Center in Danville we specialize in TMJ treatment and Oral Appliance Therapy for Sleep Apnea.  Please visit www.aodtc.com for more information and to request a complimentary consultation.

Ego: The Enemy of Progress

In a previous article entitled “There is no room for ego in medicine,” I pointed out the danger the patient faces when the doctor thoughts are owned by his ego. One example is when I was helping a cancer patient with the miseries of Chemo, two of which are depression and loss of appetite; I suggested that she ask her doctor to prescribe a substance that had proven to counteract these effects. His answer was that it was “not part of his protocol.”  I will leave the conclusion to you.

I recently cured a lady of severe pain with holistic, non drug methods only to have the lady’s physician put down my methods, handing her a prescription for a drug with many side effects, even though she was pain free. What could possibly cause this kind of attitude?

In my book WHY? The question that could save your life, my goal is to get the reader on the path of being proactive in their healthcare. One chapter attempts to explain this kind of behavior, explaining the difference between left and right brain thinking, and why doctors tend to be very left brain dominant.

The left brain is where memorized information is kept. The right brain is your imagination and the source of new information. Our present educational system tends to teach by memorization of current knowledge, which much of the time will change quite soon after, especially when that knowledge is influenced by the instructor’s opinions. In the case of foreign language, you don’t need to memorize verb tenses to communicate quite well in Mexico or France. They will come as you talk.

Too much memorization, without allowing challenges, can almost shut off the right brain, especially when one goes into graduate level education, such as medical school.  This explains why so many entrepreneurs, among them Steve Jobs and Bill Gates, became successful without degrees.  Progress comes from imagination, not memorization. Major symptoms of left brain dominance are the “know it all” and the egotist. They can’t get “outside the box” to see their lack of understanding. They own the box and defend it.

It will take several articles to demonstrate the incredible damage and slowing of progress that has been caused by doctors and scientists, who, once they become recognized, violently defend their position and work to destroy and degrade anyone who challenges them.  If it is position that results in more money, throw in greed, which multiplies ego.

Truly brilliant people are quite aware of how little they know, in fact, the height of brilliance is realizing you don’t even know what you don’t know—then the mind is truly free to take in new information. This kind of humility is essential to true scientific research.