Choosing a Good Pediatric Dentist for Your Child

I guess it’s true what Belinda Carlisle says… Heaven really is a place on earth.  I can attest to that because just recently, I met a real live angel right smack in the heart of the city.  She’s my daughter’s pediatric dentist- whose name escapes my memory right now.   Her voice alone is good enough as anesthesia.  Her demeanor is simply so relaxing, that I myself wouldn’t mind having 5 teeth pulled by her all at the same time.

Image courtesy of Ambro /

Why do we need to put the fate of our kids’ teeth in the hands of a pediatric dentist?  These professionals, unlike a general dentist, have additional years of training which highlight hands-on child psychology, growth and development.  What exactly do you look for in a pediatric dentist?

He or she should of course have a license to practice.  He should be knowledgeable and updated on the latest types of procedures available in treating your child’s condition.

Your pediatric dentist should know how to communicate with your child, especially during the initial visit.  He should know how to alleviate your child’s- and your- fears using the tone of his voice and facial expressions.  Some would show your kid how the dental chair moves up and down before he actually sits on it.  This is what’s called “therapeutic interaction” between the dentist and child.  Pediatric dentists are never forceful.

Location is also an important thing to consider when choosing a pediatric dentist.  You and your kid will have less anxiety if you took him to a dentist whose clinic is right in the neighborhood.  You can even take him on a quick tour prior to the actual visit.  If you live somewhere in Montreal, for instance, you can Google “pediatric dentist montreal” and come up with a list of dentists which you can check out.

Our children’s dental health is something we parents should really put a premium on.  The way we take care of our kids’ teeth now will determine how their smiles look in the future.

Skin Care For Sensitive Skin: The Search Ends Here

My high school years were probably the best years of my life.  I had so much to be excited about:  there was prom night, school fairs where I got to ogle cute boys from the all-boys school next to our school, and countless sleepovers at my girlfriend’s house.

Although those years were riddled with so much fun, there was an undertone of insecurity on my part, as I battled with acne.  Yes, I was your typical pimply-faced teenager who tried every imaginable product to solve my skin problems.  My search ended with Cetaphil.  I started using the Gentle Skin Cleanser then, and haven’t stopped since.

My love for Cetaphil continued to bloom through the years.  When I gave birth to my daughter, Cetaphil was what the hospital used to clean her newborn skin.  I continued using that on her well until her preschool years, and I must say that she has never had any case of rashes or skin infections- ever!

I know I’m not getting any younger, and that I should seriously start thinking about moisturizing my skin.  Since I have ultra-sensitive skin that tends to breakout quite easily when aggravated, I have always been hesitant to slop on any type of moisturizer on my face.  I have made history with Cetaphil Daily Facial Moisturizer with SPF 15, as this is the first ever moisturizer I’ve used.  I fell in love at first application!  I like that it’s not greasy and unscented.  It doesn’t feel heavy on your face, and amazingly, I didn’t feel the slightest itch.  This moisturizer keeps the skin hydrated while protecting it from the sun’s harmful rays.

Another product from their line which is worth trying is the Cetaphil Daily Advance Ultra Hydrating Lotion.  Again, it’s perfect for sensitive skin like mine, so I’m once again grinning from ear to ear.  It’s a lotion meant to give intense moisture to very dry skin.  It’s fragrance-free and non-greasy.  A week after I started using it, I noticed the skin on my arms is smoother.  I used to feel some bumps along the part of my forearm which hits the desk when I put my hands on my office table.  But now, they’re gone.  I use it as an after-shave on my legs as well.

At the risk of sounding like a TV commercial, I just have to say that there simply is no other product line for me… Cetaphil is it!  My search for the perfect skin care product has finally come to an end.

If you want to keep yourself updated on the latest Cetaphil promos or giveaways, simply follow @jandrada96 and @cetaphilippines on Twitter.

Disclaimer:  I was sent these items for review purposes, but all opinions are 100% mine.


Secrets of Well-Rested Moms

If you think that the greatest invention ever known to man is the snooze button on the alarm clock, then you are clearly manifesting signs of lack of sleep.  Although it may be all too common to hear of moms who beg for those extra five minutes of sleep every time the alarm goes off in the morning, it is an indication that these people are not getting the rest they badly need.

The important thing sleepless moms have to do is to reprogram their bodies.  Remember, we aren’t nocturnal animals, so as much as we can, we should do all our duties during the daytime.  Owls are owls, people are people.  But if you’ve always been a night person, how exactly can you re-engineer yourself into being a morning person?

Change your wake up time.  Harsh as it sounds, you have to force yourself to stick to a new time to get up in the morning.  Try setting your alarm clock to 530am, for instance, and when it goes off, just get up even if you don’t feel like it. You must do this even on weekends when it’s so tempting to sleep in.  Eventually, your body will adjust to your new wake up time.

Don’t bite off more than you can chew.  Do you really have to take that extra writing job, even if it’ll eat up more of your time?  If you really must, then do your extra work during the day.  Squeeze it in with your regular job (like I do!), so when you come home from work, you should just spend the time winding down and relaxing.

Keep naps at bay.  If you feel the pangs of fatigue creep in throughout the day, try to keep busy instead of taking a nap.  It will only make you feel more tired.  Talk to a friend or just do something- anything!  When night time comes, you’ll be so sleepy that you’d want to hit the sack early.   This will then help you adjust to the early morning start.

Once you’ve successfully transformed yourself into a morning person, you’ll soon discover that you’re no longer that cranky mom who masterfully stifles a yawn as you drive your son to soccer practice.



Kids’ Vitamins That Rock

I’m not in any way related to Nostradamus, but I think I can boldly make a fearless forecast that my 6-year old daughter is going to grow up to be one of TIME magazine’s Top 100 Most Influential People in the World.  Even at her present age, she is starting to show signs of how she manages to affect her classmates and friends.  Her sphere of influence extends from dolls, to books, and now, even to vitamins.

Vitamins?  Since when did kids love taking their vitamins?  Just recently, I introduced her to Vitapops- the first pop rocks vitamins for kids- and she instantly fell in love with it.  She brought some to school the other day, and it turned out to be a big hit with her friends as well.

Vitapops are orange-flavored vitamins which come in pop rocks form- the ones which pop, fizzle and crack inside your mouth.  It’s the first of its kind here in the Philippines.

Although it tastes like candy, it has only 1/5 of the sugar content of your usual vitamins.  And because it’s vitamin C in Sodium Ascorbate form, it doesn’t make your kid and may be taken on an empty stomach.  So it’s safe for him to take his vitamins even before he’s had his breakfast.

As my daughter steps it up a notch on the popularity scale, I’m assured that she’s getting the vitamin C her body needs.  So, I guess it’s true: being healthy CAN be fun!



Caring for Our Breasts is Best

It was just another one of those busy mornings as I was tailgating a particularly slow-moving SUV in front of me.  My impatience was about to get the better of me, when I noticed a sticker on that vehicle’s rear- a pink ribbon.  It was unmistakably that of the breast cancer logo.

The morning rush suddenly took a different turn.  I was then overcome by a sense of remorse, contemplation, and longing for someone close to me, someone who made quite an impact on my past.  I was transported back in time to 2005, when a co-worker died of breast cancer.

She was more than someone I regularly convened with to gossip by the water cooler.  She was a mentor, a confidante.  She made office life cheery and bright.  It almost felt like working in Sesame Street.

Her death wasn’t in vain, I’d like to think.  Because of her plight, I have become more conscious of taking care of my breasts.  As much as I can, I do a regular self-examination of my breasts.  I have also made it a habit to look at them in the mirror, trying to detect any changes in shape or size.

Breast cancer continues to take women’s lives.  Let us do what we can to keep ourselves healthy.  Early detection is still the best cure.  We owe it not only to ourselves, but to our loved ones as well.

A Place of Beauty Is a Joy Forever

For the record, I’m not one who loves to kiss ass, but I must admit that I do love my boss.  She’s the nicest angel on the face of the earth, and she deserves to be treated right.  So when she came up to me one morning about a keloid scar on her abdomen, I didn’t think twice about Googling a cosmetic facility for her.  I then came across The Victorian Cosmetic Institute.

You can tell a lot about a company by its website, and I must say that I was impressed and interested at the onset.  The site is easy to navigate, and it’s pretty comprehensive.  It covers all the services and treatments they offer, from breast augmentation to liposuction.

I like that they have videos which show the various procedures.  That’ll give patients an idea of what happens while they’re under the knife.  You can also ask doctors a question online.

The website also gives you options to consider when it comes to treating your condition.  If you want to get rid of wrinkles, for instance, they’ll withhold no information and present you with alternatives to surgery.

So, if you know someone who wants Angelina Jolie’s lips or who needs to get rid of man-boobs, this is the place to go.

The Impatient Patient

This weekend, I’m taking a trip which I’m not really too keen on taking.  I’m going back to see the doctor.  It doesn’t matter if he’s good-looking.  I simply dread having to drag myself to the clinic, and wait for hours until the doctor finally arrives.  Sometimes I think the Armageddon is coming before he is.

I wonder why doctors no longer do house calls.  Or do they still do that in some places?  I just hate the fact that despite how miserable you feel, you have to force yourself to make a trip to the doctor- oftentimes alone.  And then you’re left to wait for the doctor like a teenage girl waiting for her prom date.

Before I go and see any kind of doctor though, I make it a point to check out their credentials.   I found this online doctor database with a physician list which pretty much covers all doctors in the country.  It includes their work experience, clinic hours and hospital affiliations.  It’s a bonus when they have their picture posted as well.  That helps me visualize talking to them.  I think it’s good that we have access to this kind of information.

My right nostril is getting stuffy again.  I’m going to rest first- and think about what I’m going to wear to my doctor’s appointment…

Bless You, Electronic Cigarettes!

I must admit that I was a bit saddened by the news about Katie Holmes’ and Tom Cruise’s divorce, but my mood quickly spiraled back up when I got this remarkable news from Mr. Significant Other: he said he has quit smoking for good! I can hardly believe my ears when I heard him say that.
When I first met him a good two years ago, I remember him smoking like a chimney. He simply wouldn’t let up. He’d smoke up to two packs of cigarettes a day. To make things worse, I knew I was starting to fall prey to second hand smoke.


His moment of epiphany came on a lazy afternoon, when he heard that his chain smoker of an uncle now has lung cancer. And then, he thought of me- or so, he says! He realized that he was doing me harm with all the second hand smoke.

This prompted him to go online and look for electronic cigarettes. He stumbled on this online seller whom he says he connected with right away. He shipped Mr. SO his first e-cigarette, and he says he was hooked. He enjoyed the different flavors they came in, and he was quite amused with the fact that he can still play around and make circles with the smoke from it.
My daughter and I are the greatest beneficiaries from his moment of enlightenment, as we are now spared from the devastating effects of second and third-hand smoke. Yes, my daughter gets third hand smoke when the harmful toxins from second hand smoke stick to my hair and clothes, and then I go home from a date with Mr. SO and hug her.

As for me, I can start to literally breathe more freely now, knowing that it was probably Mr. SO’s smoking which has greatly contributed to my allergic rhinitis.  I no longer have to struggle with coming up with tactics to make him finally quit that nasty smoking habit.  E-cigarettes, as it turns out, are an answered prayer.

He, my daughter and I are now on the path to better health.

The Antibiotic Cocktail: When Too Much is Too Bad

How many times have we seen doctors hand out antibiotics like they were cocktails at an after-dinner party?   Ages ago, our forefathers had no other recourse but to weep and bear it whenever they were struck by some life-threatening disease such as pneumonia and tuberculosis.  But now that we have been blessed to live in this day and age of antibacterials, we tend to misuse them.  Instead of saving lives, they sometimes do us more harm than good when we take them like candy.

Some of us have made it a habit to take antibiotics at the slightest hint of a cold or cough.  This is evidence of misuse, as studies show that when we take antibiotics and other prescription drugs unnecessarily, bacteria become all the more resistant to them.  Also, if we take the same antibiotic for a recurring infection, over time, the body becomes resistant to the medicine’s benefits.

When you take too much antibiotics, you stand to lose the good bacteria from your body as well, as antibiotics can’t distinguish between the good and the bad.  Antibiotics destroy even the good bacteria, so you become more exposed to further infection.   Taking a probiotic supplement is recommended to help augment this.  It’s best to take it on an empty stomach at least three hours from your antibiotic intake.

Antibiotics are still undeniably effective in curing diseases, but if we wish to rely on their efficacy, we’ll have to treat them with respect, and not abuse them.

Flower Power: How Blooms Heal

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“We’re dropping like flies!”  Those were the immortal words spoken by my boss the other day, as almost all members of his staff have been sick these past few days.  One of my co-workers happens to be in the hospital now, basically due to fatigue from work.  I joined the bandwagon of flies and called in sick today.

More than intravenous fluids, drugs, and chicken soup, feeding the spirit helps with a speedy recovery.  What the mind perceives, the body can achieve, right?  This has got me thinking of calling up an Etobicoke flower delivery service and getting fresh blooms delivered to my co-worker’s hospital room.

Having flowers in your hospital room helps uplift your overall mood.  I can’t imagine a bed-ridden patient not smiling when she wakes up to a bouquet of fresh stems greeting her at her bedside table.

Looking at pretty flowers does help alleviate some of the pain.  When you’re happy, your body releases happy hormones, making you somewhat number to physical pain.  Your body inevitably follows suit when your mind finds itself in a good disposition.

I guess we all fall ill a little bit each day, what with the million and one things we do.  We could all use some get well flowers to cheer us up.  Chocolates thrown in are highly encouraged.