Home   |  Issues  |  The Daily Star Home | Volume 1, Issue 35, Tuesday January 27, 2004






Dental wise

DR. Mahfujul Haq Khan BDS, DDS, FSDCE (USA), PhD (Japan), Post Doc. (Japan) Specialised: Crown and Bridge work, and Periodontal plastic surgery (USA) Senior Medical Officer, Department of Dentistry, BIRDEM Hospital

Dear Doctor,
I am a schoolteacher. Last year I visited few primary schools in our neighbouring country. During my visit, in one of the schools I found some dentists checking the dental status of children in classroom. I came to know that every year they invite local dentists (volunteer service) for initial check up and the finding/report of every child's oral health status will be sent to the parents. Beside regular check up, the dentist will also deliver a short lecture regarding how to brush, which food is bad for your dental health, some short video etc. I wonder why we don't have this in our country? I think both the dentists and schoolteachers can take this initiative. What is your opinion? How we can initiate this important issue for our children? Can I invite you to my school?
Zinnat Choudhury, Dhanmondi, Dhaka

Dear Mrs Zinnat Choudhury
I do appreciate your way of thinking. Actually most other countries have this kind of community-based medical/dental service in primary school. I would not say we don't have this kind of volunteer service at all, but it happens on relatively fewer occasions. Yes, school authorities, volunteer organisations and local dental surgeon can take the initiative. It will be my great honour and opportunity if I can help in this issue. I gladly accept your invitation.

Dear Dr. Khan,
I am 24 years old. I am suffering from wisdom teeth infection for several years. When I take antibiotics, then it subsides. I had several attacks and really want to permanently get rid off the problem. My dentist told me to go for extraction. I was ready for that extraction, but when he told me that it may take hour or more and need to remove part of surrounding bone and stitches would be involved, then I got really scared. Can you tell me what may happen if I don't go for surgery? Do I really need extraction?
Akbor Hossain, Monita housing, 120 West Jatraabari , Dhaka

Dear Mr. Akbor
Sometimes we need to clear the surrounding bone for extraction of the third molar. Don't worry about stitching, it will prevent excessive bleeding, help in early healing and prevent food accumulation. Here I am giving some tips regarding wisdom teeth;

Why can wisdom teeth be impacted?
The reason why wisdom teeth can be impacted is not an easy question to answer. The primary cause of wisdom tooth impaction is simply that there is inadequate jawbone space behind the person's second molar (the second molar comes in and is already positioned some years before the wisdom teeth erupt). Why this lack of space exists is not fully understood, however there does seem to be a correlation between large tooth size and tooth crowding and the presence of impacted wisdom teeth.

Why do impacted wisdom teeth need to be extracted?
The precise reasons why an individual's wisdom teeth should be extracted should be explained to them by their dentist after an examination, which almost certainly will need to include x-rays. Wisdom teeth, either partially or fully erupted, can often be very difficult to clean effectively. The term "erupted" means that the wisdom tooth has, at least to some degree, penetrated through the gums.
Any location in the mouth where plaque is allowed to accumulate and persist, such as around a partially erupted wisdom tooth, a person will run the risk of developing dental problems such as tooth decay ("cavities"), periodontal disease ("gum disease"), or reoccurring infections. Typically it is the partially erupted impacted wisdom tooth which is more unpredictable or troublesome for a person than an impacted wisdom tooth
which has never broken through the gums.

At what age should wisdom teeth be extracted?
If a dentist can clearly ascertain that there are good reasons to remove a wisdom tooth, then it is usually best to go ahead and have it removed as soon as is reasonably possible. While there are no hard and fast rules regarding a specific age by which a person's wisdom teeth should be extracted, as a rule of thumb, the younger in age a person is when they have their wisdom teeth extracted the fewer the number of complications they experience.

Beauty Talk

Sadia Moyeen Beautician, La Belle

Q.Dear Sadia Moyeen,
One of my friends hair has started greying just at the age of 23. She is thinking about colouring her hair but she is afraid that long term use of hair colour may cause skin cancer. Is it true? Please suggest her some good brands.

Ans : Colouring your hair is quite a safe and effective method of covering the grey hair. Try using Lo'real Excellence colour, Revlon colour stay or Wella. If she does not have excessive grey hair then she could even try henna, it works well to cover stray strands and is a chemical free option.

News Flash

Kabab festival at Khazana

ACCORDING to food historians, all praise for inventing the delicious temptation called kabab goes to ancient Middle Eastern cooks. In Arabic the word Kabab or Kebab means a dish of fried meat. It is said that fuel was scarce in the area so they developed the easy and efficient way of cooking meat by threading it on skewers and frying it on a light fire.

It may originate in the Middle East but over the centuries, it has become a very popular cuisine in our continent. It is the temptation that many people simply cannot resist. The recipes and blend of ingredients are now endless.

Endless it is, not just meat but vegetable and fish are now also used to make kebabs. Jal pari prepared with pomfret, adraki chop with mixed vegetables and the flavour of ginger, or jalali jheenga, raan buzkazzi, aloo nazakath, paneer tikka, all of these just tickle your tongue.

This enormous variety of kabab is offered in a kabab festival arranged by Khazana, the restaurant of chef Sanjeev Kapoor. The celebration of savouring kabab will go on till the end of January.

Eid-ul-Azha is just around the corner. Shital J. Bhatt, the manager of the restaurant told us "This kabab festival is being held to celebrate Eid-ul-Azha. It is definitely the perfect time to arrange such an occasion".

After Dubai, the second international branch of Khazana was launched in Dhaka on July 26th, 2002. The restaurant can accommodate around 260 people at a time. Dishes served in it are specially prepared under the guidance of chef Kapoor.

Renowned designer Mahin Khan, also the chairperson of the restaurant, designed the elements used to decorate the interior. A combination of ancient Bangladeshi mould with contemporary decoration created a pleasant ambience inside.

Apart from all the other menus, munching kabab in a cosy environment can be a deliciously different experience for you this month. Khazana is situated at house # 12, road # 55, Gulshan Avenue, Gulshan-2.

By Shahnaz Parveen





From a Gusty Night

"Hold on now, hold my hand, make sure you don't let those balloons fly you away. Where will I find a daughter then? I only got one" My father use to say when I went nuts for helium-filled wonders in all colours and patterns in front of one of the only children's recreation places in Dhaka "Shishu Park." One of my tiny hands would hold on to bunches of balloons and the other would be folded in the strong grip of my father. In the middle, an ear to ear smile shone, showing my tiny teeth. At those moments I felt as though I was between two worlds, one made by my father and his strong hands.

The other was welcoming me to fly away with the balloons into another distant land, into the sky through the clouds, near the sun, like they did in "Mary Poppins". I believed the helium filled balloons actually possessed the power to take me away, and in my mini-mind I would picture possible scenarios of the chance if I did fly away.

How sad my family would be, and whether the balloons would be able to also bring me back into my father's arms. I never resolved these thoughts; instead these thoughts dissolved with time as I grew and balloons were no longer amusing.

Last night on my way out of the mall with few bags in each hand I got slapped again with a similar thought. The temperature was somewhere in the negative in Washington DC and the wind was blowing in a speed that almost seemed unnatural.

I was almost going to tip over (not because I am slim but mostly because I was caught off-guard), the shopping bags were too heavy and I gripped them harder as I made my way to the car. I looked up, saw a clear sky and thought: who would hold me back today if I were to fly away, these over stuffed plastic bags with overpaid products?

Sentiments regarding who and what will restrain me and whose grip will I return to when reality drops me back to the earth?
I didn't realise until last night, those balloons from my childhood and the thoughts, which aired away with time, did take me to a distant land, through the clouds, the sky, flying over oceans and mountains. I did reach a foreign place, a place that seemed closer to the sun because everything glowed in a much shiner shade than our green country Bangladesh, full of mud and rain.

My invisible childhood balloons guided me through, showed me to a "better" life, to dream the dreams that are possible and disregard the impossible and paint over the past. So I did. I lived for higher education, bigger paycheques, prestigious titles, and shiner accessories. I lived for looking fresher, eating healthier, breathing purer oxygen and affording the best of all worlds. I lived by the philosophy like many others: emotional dependence makes you weak, and to achieve tranquillity you need to be independent.

So like others I followed social guidelines of being 'normal'. I lived, laughed and bonded, tied and let go. Making sure my ties were never bounding enough to strap me back, my attachments were never strong enough to make me cry.

So why did I have tears last night as I pulled out of the parking lot, for what do I cry? Which hole in my heart has overflowed to this extent for it to spill over? I endlessly think to solve the mystery behind my cold salty tears, freezing on their way down to my chin. A part of me feels glad that the western chills are co-operating by solidifying my teary weaknesses seconds after they are formed. I tried to listen to the icy temperature's message about my emotional forecast, and after few minutes of forming frozen tears my eyes gave up.

The helium filled Balloons run out of gas, they can only take you to your destination, never back. The strong grip of my father no longer embraces me next to him. Being set free I run with the trend of individuality. In cold nights, however, I do wish for a firm grip, I do wish something sincere held me back instead of over-packed wasted products bought for momentary satisfaction.

I am in search of those balloons again, but they are hard to find as they have long gone out of fashion.

By Iffat Newaz



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