Improving the Mental Health of Oral Surgeons

Before on this site mental health of dentists has been discussed and particularly addressing mental health issues early on such as during dental education see for example the posts A Counseling Model for Dental Students, Designing a Predoctoral Dental Curriculum To Help With Therapy Issues such as Stress Management and Suicide Prevention, and Medical Students Are At Risk For Suicide. However, many oral surgeons are still afraid to own up to any mental health issues they may have. This is discussed in the editorial titled “Time to change the narrative” appearing in Oral Surgery in 2018 (vol. 11, pp. 97–97). The editorial discusses how oral surgery is increasing a stressful profession. This is because of increasing threats of litigation along with patients increasing having higher expectations of surgical outcomes. The traits that define a good surgeon are those who put … Read more

7 Tips for Dealing with Teeth Grinding

Dealing with teeth grinding can be a real challenge, but as it’s a problem that can cause headaches, jaw pain and damage to your teeth too, it’s not something that should be ignored. For those that  grind teeth during the day or the night, here are seven tips for how to deal with it and prevent it: Break the Habit Teeth grinding is a habit that may be breakable. The first step is identifying the times when you grind your teeth. This is obviously much easier if you grind your teeth during the day. By making a note of each teeth grinding episode you can start to work out why you grind your teeth. It may be a response to stress or something you do when you’re really concentrating on a task. Once you’ve identified the situations that lead to … Read more

Medical Students Are At Risk For Suicide

Medical students have the difficult task of learning through science and rigorous academic training to take care of others. Med students can suffer from many ailments including anxiety, stress or migraines or even worse. Being a doctor of any kind is quite simply about learning to make other people feel better, and it’s possible to heal your patient that’s the goal. Unfortunately, there are times when a patient doesn’t make it and that can feel devastating to a med student who is undergoing training, such as a resident. You are just learning and have a sense of optimism about the field. You want to help people, genuinely and seeing your patient die is a tragedy and can leave you feeling depressed. According to The American Medical Student Association, med students are three times as likely to die by suicide than … Read more

Migraine attacks can increase after a stress let down

A new study published in Neurology discusses how migraine sufferers who experience reduced stress from one day to the next are at an increased risk on a migraine attack. Migraine is a chronic condition that affects millions of Americans. Numerous triggers are believed to contribute to a migraine attack. In the study the researchers at the Montefiore Headache Center and Einstein College of Medicine conducted a three month electronic daily diary study which recorded over 2,000 diary records and 110 migraine attacks in 17 participants.  The study compared levels of stress and reduction in stress as possible headache predictors. The study found an association between reduction in perceived stress and the occurrence of migraine headaches. The results were found to be strongest during the first six hours where decline in stress associated with a five fold increased risk of migraine … Read more

Loneliness can tax the Immune System

Interesting research has been conducted by investigators from the Ohio State University. The research links loneliness to a number of dysfunctional immune responses which suggests loneliness may adversely affect overall health. The results were based on a series of studies on two different groups: 1) a healthy group of overweight middle-aged adults and 2) a group of breast cancer survivors with an average age of 51. Loneliness was measured using the UCLA Loneliness Scale. The researchers measured presence of antibodies against Epstein-Barr virus and cytomegalovirus in the breast cancer survivor group with 200 participants. Lonelier participants were found to have higher levels of antibodies against cytomegalovirus compared to less lonely participants. Further, those higher antibody levels were related to more depression, pain, and fatigue symptoms. No difference was found for Epstein-Barr virus antibody levels. Previous research has shown that stress … Read more