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
I am 39 years old. I never read lifestyle magazine. I have been a drug
addict for the last 18 years. My friends, family even myself tried to
quit this addiction by several means. Ultimately I failed. My addiction
started from simple cigarette smoking (When I was 13 years old). Now
I am a chain smoker and an addict. One of my friend told me about Dr.Khan
(Dental wise of Lifestyle magazine), and he mentioned several times
about smoking effect on our health and how to quite smoking, early sign
of oral cancer etc in this magazine. I was really thinking to visit
him for his valuable advice, but I feel shy, frustrated about showing
my ugly mouth. I don't want to smoke, I don't want to be drug addict
anymore. I wan to be a good person in this society, But I failed!
Dr. Khan help me? How can I quit smoking? What effects can smoking have
on my oral health? What are some signs of oral cancer? I know smoking
and other drug causes even oral cancer. Now I don't have any taste or
appetite. My mouth is very dry! Is it sign of oral Cancer? Please help
me Doctor! I don't want to die. -Mr. N
When a drug addict realises that he/she should quit this addiction and
when strongly believe that this will definitely kill a person today
or tomorrow, is the person who can quit easily, because he knows all
the bad effects of addiction and strong self determination.
I am ready to help you anytime you want. Don't worry about your ugly
dental condition. My job is to repair the dental condition. Don't be
frustrated. You will be a perfect person in this society, but you must
give me some time and follow my instructions. First I would like to
explain to you about the bad effects of smoking and then will give some
tips how to quit it! Quitting takes hard work and a lot of effort, but
you can quit smoking.
the way, your loss of appetite and dry mouth are not sign of oral cancer
rather addiction! This is the universal truth that, use of any tobacco
product can increase your risk of developing oral cancer.
products damage your gum tissue by affecting the attachment of bone
and soft tissue to your teeth. An example of the effect is receding
gums. A receding gum line exposes the tooth roots and increases your
risk of developing a sensitivity to hot and cold, or tooth decay in
these unprotected areas .Smoking also can contribute to bad breath,
stains on your teeth and tongue, and a build-up of tartar on your teeth.
and symptoms that could indicate oral cancer include: any sign of irritation,
like tenderness, burning or a sore that will not heal; pain, tenderness
or numbness anywhere in the mouth or lips; development of a lump, or
a leathery, wrinkled or bumpy patch inside your mouth; color changes
to your oral soft tissues (gray, red or white spots or patches), rather
than a healthy pink color; difficulty chewing, swallowing, speaking
or moving the jaw or tongue;
you have tried to quit smoking, you know how hard it can be. It is hard
because nicotine is a very addictive drug. For some people, it can be
as addictive as heroin or cocaine.
is hard. Usually people make 2 or 3 tries, or more, before finally being
able to quit. Each time you try to quit, you can learn about what helps
and what hurts.
smoking is one of the most important things you will ever do.
will live longer and live better.
will lower your chance of having a heart attack, stroke, or cancer.
you are pregnant, quitting smoking will improve your chances of having
a healthy baby.
people you live with, especially your children, will be healthier.
will have extra money to spend on things other than cigarettes.
Keys for Quitting
have shown that these five steps will help you quit and quit for good.
You have the best chances of quitting if you use them together.
2. Get support.
3. Learn new skills and behaviors.
4. Be prepared for relapse or difficult situations.
Set a quit date.
Change your environment.
Get rid of ALL cigarettes and ashtrays in your home, car, and place
Don't let people smoke in your home.
Review your past attempts to quit. Think about what worked and what
Once you quit, don't smokeNOT EVEN A PUFF!
Get Support and Encouragement
Studies have shown that you have a better chance of being successful
if you have help. You can get support in many ways:
Tell your family, friends, and co-workers that you are going to quit
and want their support. Ask them not to smoke around you or leave cigarettes
to your health care provider (for example, doctor, dentist, nurse, pharmacist,
psychologist, or smoking counselor).
individual, group, or telephone counseling. The more counseling you
have, the better your chances are of quitting. Programs are given at
local hospitals and health centers. Call your local health department
for information about programs in your area.
Learn New Skills and Behaviors
Try to distract yourself from urges to smoke. Talk to someone, go for
a walk, or get busy with a task.
you first try to quit, change your routine. Use a different route to
work. Drink tea instead of coffee. Eat breakfast in a different place.
something to reduce your stress. Take a hot bath, exercise, or read
something enjoyable to do every day.
Drink a lot of water and other fluids.
Be Prepared for Relapse or Difficult Situations
Most relapses occur within the first 3 months after quitting. Don't
be discouraged if you start smoking again. Remember, most people try
several times before they finally quit. Here are some difficult situations
to watch for:
Avoid drinking alcohol. Drinking lowers your chances of success.
Smokers. Being around smoking can make you want to smoke.
Gain. Many smokers will gain weight when they quit, usually less than
10 pounds. Eat a healthy diet and stay active. Don't let weight gain
distract you from your main goalquitting smoking. Some quit-smoking
medications may help delay weight gain.
Mood or Depression. There are a lot of ways to improve your mood other
you are having problems with any of these situations, talk to your doctor
or other health care provider.
Some part of this article is from various websites.)
A DIFFERENT SKY
an unnatural point of view
The word ‘naturalized’
means ‘adopted or accepted’. For some strange reason (may be a lack
of background in English) naturalized sounded to me like the process
of becoming natural from an unnatural or abnormal state. I, a naturalized
citizen of the United States have been adopted and accepted by this
country and it's people, and have taken oath to be an American from
my abnormal or unnatural state of being a Bangladeshi.
I was already
confused about being myself, and with the added identity of being
a naturalized American citizen I became perplexed about my state of
being. I was not an American-born-confused-desi (ABCD), neither did
I want to be a Fresh-off-Biman-Bangladeshi (FOBB), so what am I, Bangladeshi-born-confused-naturalized-American,
BBCNA? That doesn't even rhyme properly. Neither does it have a smart-Alec
feel to it. It sounds like the acronyms for some non-profit organization
or news channel. So I couldn't be that, I needed a clarified definition
for my being. Let it be an insult or mockery; at least I would be
During my post-adoption
period I have searched for my new distinctiveness and tried to look
for the American traditions (or lack of) that I can adopt after being
"accepted." During the pre-adoption period I had always
put down these American traditions and what America stood for. Eeating
apple pie and watching football with a beer in one hand just didn't
seem to me like an authentic tradition to blend into. After I became
la natural to the U .S of A I started comparing the tradition of apple
pie, football with a beer to the Bangladeshi fetish of Hilsha fish
and day old watered bacteria filled rice (panta bhat).
food rituals between the two lands was the easy task. To find the
other traditions which I could relate to and belong in was not as
effortless. I had to face it, I didn't really feel the bubbles in
my heart seeing a fat roasted turkey during Thanks giving with my
whole family gathered around the table, I mean as a Bengali I always
saw my family gathered around the table, either around a greased turkey
or around dried fish and lentils. So Thanks giving, the most politically
correct holiday of the Americans went by like any other Bangladeshi
holiday, eating, sleeping gossiping with family endlessly.
Christmas to me
meant an extra day off in the middle of the week and a huge after-Christmas
sale, when I bought everything I didn't need just because they were
75% off the original price. Christmas also brought the winter blues,
so for me the season to be jolly came later, usually during the first
days of spring.
Spring in DC reminds
me of Dhaka's winters, the slight chills, the blue sky, the soft sunlight,
the few dandelions, and an added bonus, the tax returns. The fat chunk
called tax that gets deducted from every pay-check of the year, we
get some percentage of it back during the months of spring, when my
credit cards swipe more often and I catch up with current fashion
trends, often ending up spending more money than I get back in my
Then the summer
comes, and with that 4th of July, independence day of America, which
boils down to barbequing and fireworks, a four day weekend for all
living under this sky. Being adopted also brings some step-child-syndromes
(refusing the norm and authority) in me. With a few other step-children
of America I usually end up doing something not so patriotic like
attending the Bongo-sommelon, a North American Bengali Conference
designed for 100% Bengali art and entertainment. The Bongo-shommelon
committee utilizes the four day weekend of 4th of July for a cause
that interests us more, than fireworks and burnt chicken.
So my naturalized
years go around in the same cycle, with small changes here and there,
no major upheaval, no significant modifications. I Bengalized my naturalized
self. I relate to the American traditions only from my perspective
and not from my adopters point of view. I am assuming parts of me
still remains "unnatural" and also twisted for acting like
such a step-child towards a county that gave me a new identity. Come
to think of it, how could I have learnt anything new when I was busy
holding on to the old and mixing up the past and present to find my
I have not found
the slick acronyms I was searching for my naturalized Bengali state.
How badly I would love a closure to this ongoing search of mine. I
need to accept that some things can never be defined. Till I come
out of my denial I will still keep seeking for a definition for my
natural state of being through my unnatural point of view.