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Health Q&A

Posted August 22, 2012 in Advice Column, Boone

Q: What options are available for whitening my teeth?

A: There are many products available over the counter and in the dental office for tooth whitening. Deciding if you are a qualified candidate is necessary before choosing an option, and this can best be decided by your dentist. The first option is an over-the-counter product called white strips. A white strip is a flexible strip coated with a gel containing peroxide. White strips are worn an average of 30 minutes a day for a duration of 10 to 30 days. This method often requires repeating after three to six months.
There are two main options for whitening available at the dental office. The first option is custom-made bleaching trays. Impressions of the teeth are made, and then trays are fabricated from models. A stronger peroxide of 15 to 25 percent is placed in the trays and are worn for four to six hours a day, usually while sleeping at night. After the desired shade is achieved, it will last on average up to a year. This method usually produces the longest lasting results before touchups are necessary and less gum tissue irritation occurs with custom trays.
The second option is chairside whitening. A peroxide from either 15 to 35 percent is then placed on the teeth followed by a light source for 15 to 20 minutes. This can be repeated up to five times, but does not last as long as the custom trays. Talk to your dentist on your options for teeth whitening.

Information provided by Dr. Deborah Dietrich DDS, Swanson Dental Care, 1212 Duff Ave., Ames, 515-233-2174.

Q: What is planned giving?

A: Charitable gift planning is the process of cultivating, designing, facilitating and stewarding gifts to charitable organizations (from the National Committee on Planned Giving). Gift planning is the donor-centered process of planning charitable gifts, whether current or future gifts, that meets philanthropic goals and balances personal, family and tax considerations (from the Canadian Association of Gift Planners).

Q: Why do individuals make planned gifts?
A: Asked to give, compassion for those in need, believe in the cause, affected by the cause or to give back to their community.

Q: What are examples of planned gifts?
A: Bequest in a will, Charitable Remainder Trust, gift of securities, life insurance, annuities or a donor-advised fund.

Q: Who should I talk with about a planned gift?
A: To ensure donors pick the best planned giving strategy, experts advise consulting an attorney, a financial planner and perhaps a certified public accountant. Also, letting the non-profit know of your intention to leave a gift is very helpful for future planning.

Q: Where do I begin if I want to start a plan?
A: The Boone County Hospital Foundation is offering an informative and interactive 90-minute hands-on workshop to help donors better define and satisfy charitable goals by creating their own personal High Impact Giving Plan. A plan will provide an increased impact in those areas most important to donors. The workshop will take place on Oct. 18, 6 p.m. at the  Colorado Grill. Please call Sara Behn, 433-8470, to RSVP.

Information provided by Sara Behn, BCH Foundation Director, 1015 Union Street, Boone, (515) 433-8470,

Q: Is chiropractic care the right choice for my child?

A: Surprisingly, the first stress placed on a child’s spinal column is during the birthing process. Equally surprising is the fact that 26 percent of children surveyed at school reported a history of back pain.

A child’s spine is frequently subjected to repeated forces in the process of learning to walk as well as a multitude of childhood mishaps, sports-related injuries, and postural strains. Many adults who come to a chiropractor’s office show evidence of childhood injuries to their spine that are a contributing factor for their pain today. This is why it is important to have your child’s spine checked regularly for any signs of spinal imbalances or misalignments.

Fortunately, chiropractic has had many positive results in treating some very common childhood maladies. Problems like colic, headaches, ear infections, scoliosis, asthma and even some cases of behavioral problems and bed-wetting have been successfully treated with chiropractic care. In fact, a recent study showed that children receiving chiropractic care suffered from fewer ear infections than those whose parents sought medical care alone.

Q: Are chiropractic adjustments safe for children?
A: Absolutely! Because a child’s skeletal system is still developing, there is a great deal of elasticity within the joints. Light pressure is usually all that is needed to adjust a child’s spine. The few minutes you invest in your child’s spinal checkup may save needless suffering now and in the future.

Information provided by Dr. Zach Weisbrod and Dr. Brian Jestel of Boone Family Chiropractic, 1320 S. Marshall St., 432-9525.

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