Attention Media Outlets: Stop Doing a Disservice to the Autism Community!

Attention Media Outlets: Stop Doing a Disservice to the Autism Community!

Attention Media Outlets: Stop Doing a Disservice to the Autism Community!

“Aggression that we see in autism can best be described as disruptive and irritable behavior and is often consistent with the communication and social difficulties that are the hallmarks of autism spectrum disorders,” he added. “It is a very human experience that when you cannot explain how you are feeling, that you will then act out in frustration, anger, and aggression. But, it is not consistent with the diagnosis that you would plan and execute a crime like we saw here.”


December 16, 2012 at 3:12 PM Leave a comment

What to teach your child about BULLIES

I found this on another website and had my son read it to me, and my other son, so that we could have a discussion not just about how to avoid bullying…but also how to NOT BE a bully and how to HELP someone who is being bullied.  Make sure to take the time to give your child this practical life skill.

(For more info for teachers and parents click here.)

For Kids


For Kids


What is a Bully?





A bully is a person who purposely tries to hurt others by:



· Making them feel uncomfortable.
· Hurting them by kicking, hitting, pushing, tripping, etc.
· Name-calling.
· Spreading nasty rumors.


The bully hurts the other person over and over.


The person being bullied feels that he or she can do nothing to stop it:


· He or she might feel smaller or weaker than the bully.
· He or she might feel outnumbered by the bully and the bully’s friends.
· He or she might feel there is no help:
· No one to talk to.
· No one is standing up for him or her.
· He or she often feels very sad, but does not know how to change the situation.


Bullies can be BOYS or GIRLS!!


Who do bullies pick on?


· Often, bullies are bigger kids, so they pick on:
· Kids they feel are smaller.
· Kids they think won’t stand up to them.
· Kids that have few friends to stand up for them.


Why do bullies do what they do?


· Sometimes they think that they will win or get what they want.
· Sometimes they want to impress or entertain their friends.
· Sometimes they enjoy feeling power over someone because sometimes they are being bullied by someone else!
· Sometimes they do not even realize that they are hurting the other person.


What to do if someone is bullying you:


· Tell someone you trust about it. If it is easier for you, write that person a note instead!! (People you might want to tell are: parents, teachers, the principal, playground safeties, or older friends).
· If the person you told cannot help you or does not do anything, find someone else! Never keep being bullied a secret!
· Try not to let the bully see you are upset. (Bullies are looking for signs that you are upset and they may do it more).
· Avoid areas where the bully feels comfortable picking on you (for example, places where teachers cannot see you – such as corners of the playground, lonely corridors, and behind large furniture in the classroom.
· Try to surround yourself with friends and people who will stand up for you.


What to do if you see someone who is being bullied:


· Get friends together and TALK to the bully. Let the bullies in your school know that bullying is not accepted at your school.
· Don’t cheer the bully on or stand around to watch. (The bully might like the attention, and pick on the kid even more).
· If you see someone being bullied, find someone to help stop it. (Get another friend, a teacher, a playground safety, a principal).
· Be nice to, include, and get to know the people who are being bullied: You may find they are similar to you!!
· Try to make friends with the bully too- show them other ways to interact with others. (They don’t need to bully others to be accepted or cool).



November 8, 2011 at 8:53 AM Leave a comment

Big Burgers in Taiwan cause Jaw Injuries

Apparently there’s another reason not to bite off more than you can chew: an increase in jaw injuries from noshing on supersized hamburgers.

According to the British Broadcasting Company, a Taiwanese university professor has determined that large hamburgers are the cause of the rising number of jaw injuries. Hsu Ming-lung, of the National Yang-Ming University, has found that patients are having trouble opening their mouths after eating giant hamburgers in some Taiwan eateries. Difficulties arise when diners try to eat burgers taller than 3 inches.

Hsu said a human mouth is designing to gape over objects measuring up to 1 1/2 inches and overextension, such as in an effort to bite into a giant burger, can injure the joint between the jawbone and the temporal bone in front of the ears.

He called on fast-food restaurants in Taiwan to limit the size of their hamburgers to prevent the public from quite literally biting off more than they can chew, according to a news release via the Journal of the California Dental Association.

November 30, 2010 at 2:32 PM Leave a comment

What Not To Do To Your Teeth

So you think your teeth are strong. They can handle anything right? Wrong. While you may be tempted to use your teeth as a household tool or stress relief aid, think again. You could be damaging your teeth beyond repair.


1) Cleaning teeth with Comet, bleach, or other household cleaners. Household cleaners are abrasive and will wear down the enamel on your teeth.  Some are also toxic.

2) Chewing toenails. Your teeth are for chewing food and speaking only.  Use a nail file or nail clippers to keep your mouth and your feet safe from bacteria.

3) Using “crazy glue” for loose dental work. Super-strong glue will still wear away over time.  See your dentist for a long-term solution instead of living with loose dental work.

4) Opening beer bottles with teeth. This can break the tooth; dig the bottle opener out of a drawer.

5) Sucking on lemons. This is sometimes down with the misguided goal to whiten teeth or freshen breath.  But the acid in a lemon will break down the enamel on your teeth and cause decay.

6) Filing teeth with a nail file. Patients risk taking off too much of the tooth and damaging the tooth structure.  See your dentist if the shape of your tooth doesn’t feel right.

7) Flossing with household items. Dentists have seen patients floss with random objects, including hair, needles, credit cards, paper, and rubber bands. Those things can break in your mouth and put you at risk for injury and infection.  Hard items like paperclips will wear away enamel when used repeatedly and may even break your tooth.  Use only dental floss to clean between those teeth!

8) Rinsing with acidic liquids. Just like sucking on lemons, sloshing liquids such as vinegar, apple juice, and orange juice in your mouth will wear away your teeth and cause decay.  Your best bet is mouthwash or fluoride rinse.

9) Extracting teeth with pliers/power tools. Leave extraction for the professionals.  Doing it yourself risks infection, broken teeth and roots, and bone damage to your jaw.

10) Chewing pens. Such an oral fixation can fracture teeth, leading to otherwise unnecessary dental repairs.  It can also put you at risk for ingesting ink.  There are safer ways to relieve stress and fight boredom.  Preserve your teeth for their real jobs: talking and chewing food.

November 25, 2010 at 12:53 PM Leave a comment

Stress Sometimes Means Poor Dental Health for Students

The stress caused by studying too hard can cause gum inflammation, bruxism, and the possibility of TMJ disorder symptoms. Emotional and physical factors involved in studying for exams or writing papers often force students to abandon good dental health regimens.

During exam weeks, or when term papers are due, many students pull all-nighters. Some get less sleep all the time, while others increase caffeine and nicotine or don’t eat as healthy as they should. The result is that saliva flow decreases and leaves teeth less protected.

Students may not make regular trips to the dentists because they have gone away to school and have not developed a relationship with dentists at their schools. Plus, many students think they are impervious to health issues and believe they can deal with anything on their own terms. They also don’t believe they are susceptible to stress.

Academic stress can also take its toll on the gums. Gums can become red, swollen, tender, and bleed easily. Some students will develop severe gingivitis, and frequently it will subside with regular dental care.
However, stress reduction, exercise, a balanced diet, and plenty of rest can alleviate the effects of stress on the gums.

Some students may even grind their teeth in times of stress. Often, a student’s roommate detects it because he or she can be kept up at night by someone who is grinding their teeth. Dentists can make appliances to lessen the damage caused by bruxism, or the strategies mentioned above can work as well.

TMJ disorder can cause earaches without infection, sore jaw muscles (especially in the morning), a clicking sound, difficulty when opening or closing the mouth, or locked or stiff jaw when talking, eating, or yawning.

Fortunately, cramming for exams and papers while ignoring oral hygiene is generally not a long-term behavior. After exams, students should try to return to a normal oral hygiene regimen and schedule a dental cleaning.

November 10, 2010 at 2:26 PM Leave a comment

Halloween: A Dentist’s Nemesis Holiday

My kids love dressing up for halloween and collecting candy from our neighbors. What child doesn’t?!
However, I can’t help but feel like a hypocrite participating in this tradition that pumps out children full of sugar for days!!!
Imagine how I feel opening the door to my house and putting a smile on my face as I knowingly hand out nuggets of “bad for you” to little princesses and cowboys.

One year I wanted to hand out toothbrushes or toothpaste. Hubby veto’d it stating that he didn’t want to be “that house” in the neighborhood. Plus, he didn’t want to spend the rest of the week cleaning up toilet paper from our bushes as we would likely be “TP’d” for being halloween party poopers. Sigh.

This halloween, remember me as you sift through your child’s candy stash picking out your favorites once they have gone to sleep. Then call me when you’re ready to deal with the consequences of indulgence. I’ll be waiting…patiently.

October 30, 2010 at 9:01 AM Leave a comment

If You Chew, Quit

Smokeless tobacco use in the United States continues to increase each year. It may be smokeless, but it isn’t harmless. Why should you care? Keep reading.

TOOTH ABRASION – Grit and sand in smokeless tobacco products scratches teeth and wears away the hard surface or enamel. Premature loss of tooth enamel can cause added sensitivity and may require corrective treatment.

INCREASED TOOTH DECAY – Sugar is added to smokeless tobacco during the curing and processing to improve its taste. The bacteria found in plaque, the colorless, sticky film that forms daily on teeth, use this sugar to produce acid. The acid damages tooth enamel and leads to decay.

GUM RECESSION – Constant irritation to the spot in the mouth where a small wad of chewing tobacco is placed can result in permanent damage to periodontal tissue. It also can damage the supporting bone structure. The injured gums pull away from the teeth, exposing root surfaces and leaving teeth sensitive to temperature and especially vulnerable to decay. Erosion of critical bone support leads to loosened teeth that can be permanently lost.

NICOTINE DEPENDENCE – Nicotine blood levels achieved by smokeless tobacco use are similar to those from cigarette smoking. Nicotine is a highly addictive substance that produces withdrawal symptoms when use is discontinued. Nicotine constricts the blood vessels that are necessary to carry oxygen-rich blood throughout the body. This raises both heart rate and blood pressure and increases the risk for heart disease. Additionally, athletic performance and endurance levels are decreased by this reaction.

TOOTH DISCOLORATION AND BAD BREATH – Common traits of long-term smokeless tobacco users are stained teeth and bad breath. Moreover, the habit of continually spitting can be both unsightly and offensive.

UNHEALTHY EATING HABITS – Chewing tobacco lessens a person’s sense of taste and ability to smell. As a result, users tend to eat more salty and sweet foods, both of which are harmful if consumed in excess.

ORAL CANCER – With the practice of “chewing” and “dipping,” tobacco and its irritating juices are left in contact with gums, cheeks and/or lips for prolonged periods of time. This can result in a pre-cancerous condition called leukoplakia. Leukoplakia appears either as a smooth, white patch or as leathery-looking wrinkled skin.

OTHER CANCERS – All forms of smokeless tobacco contain high concentrations of cancer-causing agents. These substances subject users to increased cancer risk not only of the oral cavity, but also the pharynx, larynx and esophagus.

DANGER SIGNS – If you use smokeless tobacco, or have in the past, you should be on the lookout for some of these early signs of oral cancer:

•A sore that does not heal
•A lump or white patch
•A prolonged sore throat
•Difficulty in chewing
•Restricted movement of the tongue or jaws
•A feeling of something in the throat

Pain is rarely an early symptom. For this reason, all tobacco users need regular dental check-ups.

Oral Health America’s NSTEP program provides cessation resources specifically for smokeless tobacco users. Visit to access The Cessation Process, 7 Steps to Recovery

October 27, 2010 at 9:07 PM Leave a comment

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