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Health Q&A

Posted October 03, 2012 in Advice Column, Urbandale

Q: What are some more ways to naturally treat depression?

A: There are about eight million Americans afflicted with depression, so you don’t have to feel you’re alone. Because of this, many people are dealing with both physical and psychological symptoms that are detrimental to their daily functioning. Depression may even get worse if left untreated. Along with nutrition (talked about in detail in Depression Part I), acupuncture is a powerful treatment that can also help.
If you’re looking for a holistic approach, acupuncture can be a very effective alternative to treat depression, anxiety, stress-induced fatigue and mood swings with long-term benefits. Acupuncture treats the root cause of internal imbalance caused by exposure to external stress. If a person is depressed, the body results in deficient or stagnant energy which creates an imbalance of yin and yang.
Acupuncture seeks to address the body, mind, emotions and spirit. Typically when patients have an emotional complaint, there will also be physical and spiritual disharmony as well. Acupuncture consists of inserting fine needles along various points in the body to stimulate the body’s flow of energy and functionality known as Qi. It’s been shown that acupuncture helps stimulate the release of certain mood-regulating brain chemicals (serotonin).
Acupuncture is pleasant, relaxing and energizing, creating harmony within ourselves. Treatments should feel like being in a deep meditation while your body moves back into balance. Patients can experience relief in three to six visits. Best of all, there are no side effects from acupuncture treatments.

Information provided by Dr. Jessa Kane, CACCP, Yost Family Chiropractic, 3993 100th St., Urbandale, www.YostFamilyChiropractic.com.

Q: Did George Washington really have wooden false teeth?

A: Our first president was plagued with dental difficulties, losing most of his teeth to periodontal (gum) disease while still in his 20s. Contrary to popular belief, though, Washington never had wooden dentures. They were made from gold, elephant ivory, hippopotamus tusk and human teeth. A set is on display at Mount Vernon, his Virginia home. Modern dentures are commonly made with acrylic and porcelain.
One of Washington’s dentists was a fellow named John Greenwood. In 1790, Greenwood adapted his mother’s foot-operated spinning wheel to create the first-known dental drilling machine. Washington lost his teeth long before 1913, the year the phrase “dental hygiene” was coined in Bridgeport, Conn., where Dr. Alfred Civilion Fones started a school of hygiene. The school remains in operation today as part of the University of Bridgeport.
The earliest known reference of a dentist, by the way, dates to 2600 B.C. An inscription on the tomb of an Egyptian scribe named Hesy-Re calls him “the greatest of those who deal with teeth.” The practice of dentistry has come a long way.

Information provided by Des Moines Dental Group, 708 First Ave S., 967-6611.

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