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Tuesday, February 3, 2009

A Little Marriage Advice

Today is my parent’s 50th wedding anniversary. We went to Boise for family portraits and a nice dinner. I truly believe that they have set a great example for me and my siblings. Chad and I will be celebrating our 20th this year.

I read a great article in the local newspaper a couple years ago about marriage. The headline caught my eye, “Marriage, not children, is the center of a family.” The author, a psychologist, explains that the divorce rate is ever increasing due to the fact that children do not see their parents as a couple in love but rather individual mom and dad roles. When these children grow up and have children of their own, they also model the roles of mom and dad.

It is difficult to put your relationship with your spouse ahead of your kids and I don’t advocate neglecting kids in any way, but take the time to nurture your friendship and relationship with your spouse. Go on a date without your kids. Take a weekend away. Be a positive role model for your kids.

Thanks, Mom and Dad, for being that for me. Happy Anniversary, I love you.

Welcome to my life,

Raising Athletes?

What as busy weekend! We went to a 2-day wrestling tournament in Idaho Falls. Taylor is wrestling varsity as a freshman and he is our 103 pounds of rippling muscle.

Not every kid is destined to be an all around athlete. Some are not athletes at all. We have encouraged both Taylor and Shelby to try all different kinds of interests and sports. Height is not one of our strong suits in our family, but our kids have never been intimidated by this. Our motto is, “Dynamite comes in small packages.”

Shelby is getting ready for softball season to start and also competes in swimming. Both are honor students. Teach your kids to be winners, and they will win. Show your kids that you are proud of them in whatever they do.

Welcome to my life.

Lumps and Bumps

Last week, one of my recall patients had concerns about a swollen, painful lump in her cheek/TMJ area. Sandra suffers from severe Sjogrens disease and has had significant dental decay and mouth sores as a result.

The extra oral exam revealed bilateral hard palpable masses. The right side was the size of a marble and the left was considerably larger, about the size of an egg. With Sandra’s permission, I took a panorex to further evaluate the suspicious areas. Although the images were light, I could certainly see the round masses. My initial thought was a clogged Stenson’s duct. We referred Sandra to an ENT for further evaluation. She was pretty nervous about going and was afraid she might have a tumor, so I offered to accompany her to her appointment.

It took less than 10 minutes for Dr. KC McGee to diagnose Parotiditis. With a tongue depressor, he was able to put lateral pressure on the inside of her cheek at the location of the parotid gland and express a large amount of thick greenish exudate from the Stenson’s duct. I had never seen anything like this. Due to the lack of saliva, the duct had become so dry that it basically closed up and the parotid gland became infected. He prescribed antibiotics and cultured the exudate.

I called Sandra later that evening to see how she was doing. She had been keeping warm, moist compresses on her cheeks and had had more drainage through out the day. She was sore but was relieved to know she didn’t have cancer.

Lumps and bumps come in different shapes and sizes. It is our professional responsibility to check each and every patient for intra and extra oral abnormalities. If a patient is fearful, you may have to literally hold their hand to get them to follow up on a referral. When in doubt, check it out. That’s my motto.

Welcome to my life.