About a year ago I stopped chewing gum. I haven’t chewed a piece of gum in more than a year! Me, the chronic gum chewer!
Last June I was having excruciating pain on the left side of my jaw. I was under a tremendous amount of emotion and stress.
When I had braces as a teenager I developed TMJ disorder. Not uncommon when you have braces.
Occasionally my jaw would pop, grind, feel “unhinged” and sometimes hurt. But it usually didn’t last long.
My pain last year didn’t go away. My dentist referred me to an oral surgeon.
The oral surgeon unofficially diagnosed me with osteoarthritis.
Osteoarthritis is the “wear and tear” arthritis.
Eight months later (long story why it took so long) I saw a specialist dentist.
He ordered scans, pictures, etc.
In June I was diagnosed with Degenerative Joint Disease, a fancy way to say osteoarthritis (of the jaw).
What I found rather interesting at my first appointment when filling out the new patient questionnaire was all the questions about my sleep, which is poor. There is a link between jaw issues and sleep issues. Wow, who knew?
My doctor and I decided to deal with my jaw issues … Continue reading
So twice a year I write about time change. And we are upon that time once again.
For most of us in the U.S. we will Fall Back on Sunday at 2 a.m.
Many of my readers are from Arizona, so this post doesn’t apply to you as much. But I think the suggestions I am going to make are great whenever you cross time zones.
I am not a great sleeper. And time change for me is pretty difficult.
When you Spring Forward, you lose an hour. The light is different. It is more difficult to get to bed on time for your workweek.
When you Fall Back, you “gain” an hour. But that gain can still really mess you up. If you normally get up at 5 a.m. then you are likely gonna start rousing at 4 a.m. Ugh! And the evenings get darker earlier, which has already been happening lately.
That “gained” hour can throw your day (or even the following week) off.
This time should be a little easier for me as I don’t have to get up at 5 a.m.
But lately I have been having trouble with my sleep. I finally feel like I have a … Continue reading
Occasionally I get a charley horse in one of my legs in the middle of the night while sleeping. One time I got one in each calf. Wow, ouch!
Over the past few nights I have woken up in the middle of the night twice with a charley horse in my left leg.
According to WebMD, a charley horse is a cramp, particularly in the calf muscles, caused by muscle spasms, involuntary contractions of one or more muscles.
For me the cramps and muscles spasms are terribly painful. I used to try to massage them out.
Years ago I learned a tip that if you can stand on your feet the cramps will go away immediately. It’s true. But to get out of bed and stand up takes a lot of might and strength. But once I step my feet to the floor the cramps and spasms completely disappear.
I’ve heard a variety of reasons why I could get them. Such as dehydration or potassium deficiency. Many more possible causes are listed in the WebMD article.
According the MedLine Plus, when a muscle goes into spasm it feels very tight. It is sometimes described as a knot. The pain can be … Continue reading
What do I need?
What do you need?
I have been really trying to listen to myself lately.
Work has been extremely demanding and busy and overwhelming and stressful as we continue to go through transition. More than usual I feel tired, exhausted and wiped out.
I have really been trying to take the queues my body gives me whether physically, mentally, physiologically, emotionally.
Last weekend we had an Intensive Weekend at teacher training, which was absolutely amazing and I learned so much. But it also took a lot out of me.
I had a lot of things I wanted to do on Sunday. They were to attend Vickie’s morning yoga class; attend an optional hour discussion on meditation before our required three hours of teacher training; the three hours of class; and Sunday night Restorative yoga class.
I knew that was all too much for me and something had to give. I decided to skip Vickie’s class and did my own home practice. This also gave me my whole morning to lounge, enjoy my coffee and do a little homework.
I knew my body needed and would benefit more from a Restorative class than an asana class.
I took … Continue reading
About two months ago I talked about my TMJ disorder acting up. It first triggered when I had braces. Now it resurfaces when I am stressed.
It is still lingering. I figured when I was in Turks & Caicos for a stress-free week of relaxation it would go away. It did briefly.
On Tuesday in Vickie’s Hatha yoga class she mentioned her own TMJ disorder.
Her dentist told her if she said Nnnnnn and held her jaw in that position that that is the perfect placement for your mouth, jaw and tongue and will relieve discomfort or pain.
I, of course, had to do my own research. Both articles I link to mention Nnnnn for the jaw. Holding the jaw this way allows the teeth to come apart while relaxing the jaw muscles.
One of the first articles I came upon came from my alma mater, University of Arizona’s Campus Health, where my mom worked and retired from and where I worked as a student worker for about two years.
Diet, sleeping habits, oral habits, applying heat and ice, medication and exercises are all addressed.
Metro Dentalcare suggests tips for self-care for jaw pain.
Apply moist heat or … Continue reading
The lack of posts have to do with many things going on in my life. Nothing major. Don’t freak out. It’s just life.
Today I am going to talk about the BART strike, which is drastically affecting my life even though I don’t actually take BART to work.
(For those of you who don’t know, BART stands for Bay Area Rapid Transit and is our commuter subway system in the Bay Area.)
According to a story I read the other day, about 400,000 people utilize BART on a workday.
I am happy to read that there is progress in negotiations.
Now I will admit I am not fully aware of all the goings on. I know the contract was up at midnight on Sunday and BART workers wanted certain things and now there is a labor dispute. I am prounion for the most part. But I have my limits.
Since BART workers went on strike my world has gone nuts-O!
Curt and I only have one car. I drive to a shuttle and the shuttle drives me to work. Curt takes BART to work.
So we have been tag teaming. I drive him to the ferry station in Oakland. … Continue reading
Yesterday morning I woke up around 6. On weekends if I wake up before 7 I usually laze around in bed until 7ish and hope to catch a few more zzzzs.
I felt really tired and hoped to fall back asleep. I figured I needed the rest.
Plus every single morning I have something to do. Monday through Friday I get up at 5:30. Monday through Thursday I am on a shuttle bus to work at 7 a.m. Friday mornings I hit the gym for a 6:30 a.m. class and then back home to work. On Saturdays Curt and I hit the gym. Sundays I get the grocery shopping done and then take a late morning yoga class.
Yesterday I slept in until 9;30. About 1 Curt and I headed out to lunch. I felt a little off but figured I was just hungry.
I had a couple of beers and a burger, which had a fried egg and bacon. Talk about getting my protein in.
After lunch I still felt funky. (I figured it might have been the ginormous sundae I had the evening before. Eeekk! I went overboard with the dessert.)
When we got home I changed into … Continue reading
Well, what a week …
I knew this past week would pose some challenges in the caloric intake department with food and booze and also with my regular exercise routine.
What I didn’t count on was getting sick … AGAIN.
Tuesday morning when I woke up I was exhausted. And I slept decently.
I felt the cold forming in my chest and was worried that this one was gonna be a doozy.
Lucky for me … I didn’t get a full blown cold, which is what happened a few weeks ago.
Even with multiple eating and drinking fests I had a plan to keep my exercise regular.
But when I am sick I don’t exercise as I feel it is important and necessary for me to focus my energy on getting back to being healthy.
This means I didn’t get to work on my planks and push-ups for March’s Monthly Challenge. In just a week I was able to master an 80-second plank. Imagine what I could have done had I worked on that a little more.
I feel almost back to normal today. But I made a decision to make sure that I am 100% healthy before getting back … Continue reading
I have a cold.
And man, it sure makes me tired.
I have skipped the gym since Thursday evening, when I thought I might be getting sick. I don’t exercise when I am sick as I personally believe my energy should be reserved for getting back to healthy. But that’s not what this post is about. (I wrote about that before if you are interested, go here.)
I had heard that a cold is contagious before symptoms even appear.
According to MedTV, the period when you’re most contagious is when your symptoms are at their worst — Day 2 to Day 4 of the cold. You’ll become less contagious as the cold symptoms improve.
Go Ask Alice says, studies show that, if you contract a cold, you can transmit it to others one or two days before your symptoms appear, and up to four or five days after first being exposed to the virus.
According to Discovery Health, if you think about how a virus works, it makes sense that we’re most contagious when our symptoms are at their worst. … So, when are you most contagious? Most experts agree that adults with a cold or the flu start being contagious about … Continue reading
It’s that time of year again. Most places in North America will Spring Forward tomorrow at 2 a.m.
To my Arizona family: No more confusion. Starting tomorrow we will be back in the same time zone. (For those of you who don’t know, Arizona doesn’t participate in Daylight Saving Time.)
I hate Springing Forward or Falling Back. The time change, only one hour, completely messes me up.
Normally my preparation for the time change means no difference in my routine. I make sure to keep up with my exercise and healthy eating. But I am nursing a cold. I don’t exercise when I am sick (and depending on the illness I eat whatever I feel like.)
Usually I try to make sure to take the 6 p.m. Restorative yoga class Sunday nights. I think that helps with sleep. But depending on how I feel and if I can breathe through my stuffed-up nose …
Sometimes the Restorative yoga teacher gives us tips if we are having trouble sleeping. A good stretch while lying on your back: Spread your arms and hands and your feet and yours legs and then let go.
This is my advice on how to deal with … Continue reading