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SAY 'AAAH' | Booster Shots

Ow! Ow! Ouch!

November 02, 1998

Need a reason not to pierce your tongue? Think damage to the teeth. Says cosmetic dentist Dr. Sinaida Kniter of the Hollywood Smile Dental Center: "In my practice, we are beginning to see patients who have damaged their teeth by repeatedly tapping them with the knobs, rings and posts that have been inserted into their tongues." The microfractures, fissures in the tooth enamel that are invisible to the naked eye, expose the nerve to food particles and temperature changes, and can cause a pierced person to feel everything from irritation to a mouthful of pain.

Make Sure Kids Sit in Shopping Carts

Falls from shopping carts are the leading cause of head injuries among young children, reports the October Journal of the California Dental Assn. In 1995, more than 22,000 children age 5 and younger were taken to the emergency room after falling from the seat or basket of a shopping cart, says the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. About 50% of the injuries were considered severe. They included concussions, broken bones and broken or chipped teeth. Further proof that using that safety belt is a good idea.

Is It Soup Yet?

It's comfort food, soup is. And Americans seem to be eating up more of it. Good going, since many soups are loaded with vegetables, fiber-rich grains and beans, says the November issue of Fitness. But beware of cream- or cheese-based varieties, which are full of fat, the magazine warns. Instead of corn chowder (255 calories, 16 grams of fat) or New England clam chowder (215 calories, 13 grams of fat), it suggests trying black bean (170 calories, 3 grams of fat) and minestrone (105 calories, 2 grams of fat).

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