Presbyterian | Spring 2020 | Your Story 3 Children’s dental health We all want our children to have beautiful smiles! Good dental care starts young! Growing up with good oral health habits from an early age and visiting the dentist regularly helps children get a good start on a lifetime of healthy teeth and gums. Just brushing isn’t enough to keep your child’s mouth clean and healthy. Good dental health involves brushing and flossing along with regular visits to your dentist. Dental visits aren’t just for taking care of cavities. Seeing a dentist every year is very important in the good growth and development of your child’s teeth. During your child’s dental visit, the dentist can check teeth, gums, and other oral tissues. This helps find any problems that may be in your child’s mouth. Cavities may not show up until after damage has been done to the tooth. Regular visits to your dentist are important in keeping your child’s teeth healthy and clean. Early signs of tooth decay are easier to treat than advanced cases. For help finding a dentist in your area or to schedule an appointment, call the Presbyterian Customer Service Center at (505) 923-5200 or 1-888- 977-2333 . Knowing the impact of other health conditions on vision Not only are women at greater risk for many eye diseases, they are also at risk for many overall health conditions that affect their eyesight. These include: Diabetes. One in 10 American women over the age of 20 has diabetes. Diabetes increases risk for several eye diseases—diabetic retinopathy, most commonly—as well as damage from ultraviolet (UV) light. People with diabetes are often sensitive to light, have problems telling colors apart in low lighting, and have trouble driving at night. Gestational diabetes is rare and goes away after pregnancy. Women who have gone through it have a 40 to 60 percent chance of developing diabetes in the next five to 10 years. Autoimmune diseases. Women are more likely to get several autoimmune diseases that can affect the eyes. These include: ● ● Multiple sclerosis (MS) ● ● Lupus ● ● Rheumatoid arthritis ● ● Sjögren’s syndrome MS often causes temporary burning in the eyes or eyesight loss. Sjögren’s, which dries out moisture-producing glands in the body, causes the most eye-related diseases. Of the one million people in the United States with Sjögren’s, 90 percent are women. Breast cancer and other cancers. Some cancer treatments can cause: ● ● Bleeding in the eye ● ● Light sensitivity ● ● Cataracts ● ● Dry, itchy eyes Source: Transitions Optical, Inc. Women and eye health risks Most women know how important it is to visit the doctor regularly so they can stay healthy and feel their best. But many don’t know this means having their eyes checked as well. This is really important for women. Women are more likely than men to experience eye-related diseases and conditions such as: ● ● Cataracts ● ● Glaucoma ● ● Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) Unfortunately, many women don’t know about this risk and are not doing enough to care for their healthy eyesight. Not going to the eye doctor can lead to healthcare costs down the road. Plus, people with eyesight problems are more likely to miss work. They also get headaches, eyestrain, and tiredness that may affect them on and off the job.