Nighat Ara, Psychiatrist
After my father passed away, we shifted to my mother's we are on the
5th floor and she is on the 3rd. My child had lots of friends in the
previous place but here she is all alone. Recently she has become very
moody, and we are always fighting, few days back I was so angry I was
really mean to her I slapped her very hard on the buttock few times
and shook her hard. I know I did a wrong thing but I am also going through
such stress and traumas. Please tell me how to handle my present situation
and how to be friends with my only child.
You are still grieving the death of your father and it takes few
months (usually around six months to one year) before a grieving person
can internalise the image of the lost person and returns to normal daily
activities. Moving to a new place is an additional stress and any change
can actually make life a little bit chaotic. As time passes by, people
get adjusted to new people and places gradually and life falls into
a routine. Eventually life gets more stabilised. It seems to me that
you are displacing your stress feelings on your daughter and with minor
irritations losing control over your behaviour. It happens when one
is not managing the stress feelings well enough. It is always easy to
blame others (externalising) for our feelings and behaviour. However,
excessive vulnerability could be related to other past and current issues
of life too. Stress management capacity can be increased by cognitive
behaviour therapy. Some steps in stress management are as follows- a)
change the situation (e.g. leaving the spot or distract yourself to
something else). Tell your daughter that you need time out for your
sanity. Create distance unless you know you have control over your behaviour.
b) Change how you react to the situation (e.g. what upsets you so much?
what is in your daughter that makes you so intolerant?) A six-year-old
girl is moody, is it all? If you lose temper that would be a bad role
model for her and she will learn violence. Just telling her that you
don't like what she is doing could be enough to communicate your disapproval.
Spanking is sometimes used as a punishment method but shaking her could
be quite dangerous. Explore other benign ways of discouraging her behaviour.
c) Change how you look at the situation (e.g. reframe your perception.
your daughter is misbehaving. So, you don't approve the behaviour but
don't you love her as a person? Separate the person and her behaviour).
She sometimes behaves badly but that is not all about her. Childhood
physical and emotional abuse by parents can lead to serious mental health
problems in later life. Relaxation practice, adequate self-care and
sharing responsibility (participation from your husband is essential
for proper parenting)- all these are important for improving stress
management capacity. No parent is a perfect parent. Children can survive
well despite lot of mistakes made by their parents. Communication problem
between mother and daughter can be overcome by spending more time together
in good mood, listening to her attentively and expressing love by hugging
and caring. Involve her in different activities (e.g. swimming, art
etc), boredom makes children restless. Encourage and appreciate her
for participating in chores and spend some playful time together. Nothing
will change instantly, believe that for every positive action results
will follow eventually. Anxiety feeling in the parent is easily transmitted
into the children, they act out to draw attention to their discomfort
level. The more you gain control over yourself, children follow the
course and situation gets better. Professional help and structured support
is particularly important in case of single parenting.
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 Dr. Mahfuj
I am a 42 years old male. I have five root canal treated teeth which
has been done three years back and was advised for capping by my Dentist.
Anyway, I was very reluctant to do this cap as there was no pain and
other complains. But unfortunately last week one of my root canal treated
teeth was fractured during biting simple biscuit. What to do now? Is
it still possible to make a cap on that fractured tooth?
Well, your dentist gave you correct decision about making crown (Cap)
of those root filled teeth three years back. Actually after root canal
treatment tooth structure become very brittle and discolor. To restore
the normal structure/anatomy, to protect possible fracture and to rebuild
normal functions, we strongly recommend crowning/cap after root canal
treatment. Without examining your teeth, it will be difficult job for
me to give you correct decision whether it is possible to cover your
fractured teeth by a cap or not. But if your root is healthy even after
you loose your entire crown and if you don't have any pain complain
, then it is still possible to restore your valuable teeth by cast core
technology (this is a relatively new technology in Bangladesh). I think
you should immediately consult with your dentist for his valuable opinion.
I can not drink cold water as it gives me a very abnormal sensation
(a sort of pain) on my upper right jaw. Even I can not locate the exact
teeth. I visited many dentist, but I am not satisfied with their explanation
and line of treatment plan. Can you explain about abnormal sensation
? Why its happening?
Yakub Molla, Tutpara, Khulna
Dear Yakub Molla,
I will try to explain about the causes of abnormal sensation.
Abnormal sensation or Tooth Sensitivity
is tooth sensitivity?
It can be defined as a painful reaction in one or more teeth triggered
by hot, cold, sweet, or sour foods and drinks. This pain can be sharp,
sudden and shoot deep into the nerve endings of your teeth.
Apart from a cavity
or a missing filling, the most common cause of tooth sensitivity is
exposed dentin on the roots of your teeth. Normally, the dentin (the
second, more sensitive layer of the tooth) is surrounded and protected
by your enamel, cementum(special root covering) and gums. The cause
or mechanism of dentinal sensitivity is still not well understood. It
is believed that the little tubes that connect the dentin to the nerve
or pulp serve as sensory conductors. That sensation may be one of pain.
of exposed root surfaces, which may result in dentinal sensitivity:
· Brushing too hard - Over a period of time, brushing too hard
or using a hard-bristled toothbrush may wear away enamel or cementum
and cause the dentin to be exposed.
· Recession of the gums - Movement of gums away from the tooth
due to periodontal disease will expose the root surface.
· Gum disease - Inflamed and sore gum tissue may also cause sensitivity
due to the loss of supporting ligaments which exposes root surface.
causes of sensitive teeth:
· Cracked teeth - Chipped or broken teeth may fill up with bacteria
from plaque and enter the pulp causing an inflammatory reaction.
· Grinding your teeth - Grinding or clenching your teeth may
wear down the enamel and expose underlying dentin.
· Plaque- The presence of plaque on the root surfaces can cause
to do at home:
· Maintain good oral hygiene - Continue to clean all parts of
your teeth and mouth thoroughly.
· Use a soft bristled toothbrush -This will result in less toothbrush
abrasion of the tooth surface.
· Use desensitizing toothpaste - There are many on the market.
With regular use you should feel a decreased sensitivity.
· Consider what you eat- If you frequently eat foods high in
acids, such as citrus fruits (example: sucking on lemons), they can
gradually dissolve the enamel over time, leading to dentin exposure.
The citric acids may aggravate the hypersensitivity and initiate a painful
· Use fluoridated dental products - As an example, with a daily
application of a fluoridated mouthrinse, hypersensitivity usually decreases.
Ask your oral health professional, about professional products that
may be used to help reduce sensitivity. Some of the most common treatments
· white fillings (Glass inomer or composite filling) to cover
exposed root surfaces.
· fluoride varnish applied to the exposed root surface.
· dentin sealer applied to the exposed root surface.
You don't have to suffer with sensitivity after this.
do you want to be?
about the question first. Who do you actually want to be? Go through
the ideal and real images and then build a bridge between the two. A
compromise between aspiration and reality is the alchemy, which fabricates
personal style. Sometimes finding your unique charms involves ignoring
others' well-meaning advice. If you want to flip your image everyday,
then don't forget to experiment with it. There is plenty of time for
fashion uniforms later.
A DIFFERENT SKY
After making fifty
different gestures and expressions and desperately struggling to speak
a few words of Spanish, I gave up. He looked at me like he was almost
entertained, he felt sorry for me I guess. But he still looked clueless
and I was misunderstood as usual, lost in translation.
The story is simple,
it was a rare occasion when I stayed late at work and lost track of
time. Usually I am out by 5:30 pm sharp but that day I was consumed.
All my colleagues had left one by one, after a couple of hours I was
ready to go myself when I heard the cleaning crew getting their odds
and ends out to vacuum and neat-up the place.
When I started
working at this place, along with thousands of paper works to fill
out some speech was also given to me about making sure to lock up
the place if I am ever the last one to leave, and I couldn't quite
remember the consequences of not following that rule. I was definitely
not going to find out as it probably wouldn't be anything rewarding.
So that's how
the conversation (lack off) started, me walking up the cleaning man,
a male in his early 20s, big glasses, square broad face, he looked
Bengali almost, in the Mexican sort of way. I was trying to ask him
if he can lock the door behind him after he leaves, a simple question,
with a known answer. I knew he had the keys, he is Mr. cleaning man,
he gets into suites and cleans up after-hours, so of course he had
the keys, but I wanted to make sure, I didn't want to be in trouble
for something this minute.
But I couldn't
explain, frustrated I left, tracked down his supervisor whose English
was just slightly better and he assured me they would lock the door
behind them. I went home an hour later, thinking about not the security
of my work place but the security of the cleaning man, about the ground
he stands on, how shaky and unknown it must be for him.
Sure Spanish is
the second most spoken language in America but with the lack of spoken
and written English you are sure to be stuck in one circular social
status in USA. The first generation Spanish workers cleaning American
bathrooms and carpets, washing dishes or doing construction work making
roads they will not drive a fancy car on, or building houses which
they will never be able to afford. It struck me as an under-rated
tragedy of Spanish immigrants of certain education and social levels.
I was thinking
maybe I should offer our cleaning man some options, I thought about
picking up brochures for him for night school, free ESL (English as
Second Language) classes, I felt like it was not fair for him to go
through the rest of his life dusting desk tops and collecting trash.
Then I thought
about each time I had bumped into a first generation Bangladeshi immigrant
working in an odd job, how I had silently laughed about the way they
pronounced certain English words, (i.e. furking (parking), beep (beef))
about how their broken English made me discomfited, they seemed so
uncouth and raw, I walked away criticizing them and their poor English
and the way they failed to adapt.
I thought hard
if I had ever seen a Bangladeshi male or female working for a cleaning
company, and couldn't recall any. It's easily understandable the way
a person with a decent background can feel cleaning toilets for living…
I know it hurts many Bangladeshis egos already to be taxi or bus drivers
leaving their much higher in aesthetic value jobs in Bangladesh…
For the first
time I felt proud of the first generation Bangladeshis and their thick
accents. Even though they can not speak English properly or speak
it with a miserable accent, they still endeavor and they continue
learning. There are a few Bangladeshi immigrants who with their slurred
accents started working at McDonalds and eventually with hard work
and high goals became owners of popular franchises and restaurants.
Success stories of embarrassingly bad English speaking Bangladeshi
immigrants, untold and hidden under their twisted heavy treacherous
tongues with poor pronunciations.
The next day I
printed out brochures for English lesson classes and gave it to the
much deserving Cleaning man, I do not know if he will take the lessons
but I will feel an ounce of satisfaction that I tried. And for all
the Bangladeshi immigrants with thick diacritical marks surviving
everyday with undeserved mockery and in economical and social traps,
I am not sure if you will get to read this column, but I am out there
along with a few others like me, carrying around brochures for adult
education and free ESL lessons, if you don't find me, I will find
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