Monday, October 16, 2017

Meredith's Monday Musings: Fluoride

Hi All!

Happy Monday! How are y’all doing today? I’m doing pretty great. I’ve been working a lot, so I’ve been staying pretty busy. 

Today’s Meredith’s Monday Musings topic is all about: Fluoride. 

If there’s one question that I get asked the most at my work, it’s “Is fluoride dangerous?” My answer is always, “Yes…if you consume a lot of it.” 

There are many false claims out there about this element, that is actually very healthy for your teeth and body. Critics claim that fluoride can kill you, that it’ll do serious harm to your children, that the government is controlling us by putting it all in the water, etc. It’s a bit crazy what some people say. 

So here’s the deal with fluoride. Fluoride is great to use for teeth because 1) It helps re-build damaged enamel. I love this benefit! Our enamel takes a beating every day. When we brush our teeth or drink fluoridated water, the fluoride gets to come in and act like a little repair crew, fixing the micro holes that we ourselves created in our enamel. This is fantastic because if these micro holes weren’t fixed on a daily basis, there’d be a better chance that they could form into larger holes, allowing bacteria to get inside, and then the person has a cavity. 2) It stops the growth of bacteria. There’s more bacteria inside a person’s mouth than I think anyone realizes. It’s actually pretty gross to think about. Anyway, fun fact for the day, cavities are caused by a bacteria called S. Mutans. These bacteria eat away at the enamel on a person’s teeth and if undisturbed will go into the dentin of the tooth, causing a cavity. When these bacteria are doing that, if they get exposed to fluoride, they stop multiplying and will die. Thus, limiting your chances for getting a cavity. 

I don’t know about y’all, but the two benefits listed above are seriously great! As a person who is prone to cavities while using fluoridated toothpaste, I’m scared to imagine how many areas of decay I’d have in my mouth if I chose not to use fluoridated toothpaste. 

Now, it’s time to address the critics. As I stated before, Fluoride can be dangerous to a person if said person consumes a large quantity of it. For example, if someone were to eat an entire tube of toothpaste, they’re going to get very sick and possibly die. In that situation, yes fluoride is very bad. However, I don’t know any health professional that would ever recommend that a person eat a whole tube of toothpaste. In fact, when a person brushes their teeth, we just want them to use a pea sized drop of tooth paste. 

As for fluoride in the water, it is correct that if there’s too much fluoride in the water it can cause some serious staining to a person’s teeth. This is actually called dental fluorosis. There are places in the United States, mostly around Colorado and that area where fluoride is naturally abundant in the water. (To make it 100% clear, the government isn’t adding fluoride to that water, it’s the earth itself adding all of it.) Anyway, so yes, if there’s too much fluoride in the water, it is bad for people’s teeth. 

Here’s the thing that people should know. In places like Colorado where there is too much fluoride naturally occurring in the water, the government goes in and takes out some of it so that people aren’t getting the harmful effects of the element. In places that have too little fluoride in the water, they’re adding a tiny bit to it. In fact, the amount of fluoride in the water is .7ppm. In case you don’t know what that means, for every 1 liter of water, there is .7 milligrams of fluoride in it. This is such an unbelievably small amount. 

If all of the above still doesn’t have you convinced that fluoride is good for humans, let me give one last example. A banana has potassium in it, right? Yes. Yet people eat bananas all the time. One banana a day is pretty healthy for people. The body needs potassium, it has natural sugars, etc. Do y’all know that too much potassium will kill a person? *GASP* Even knowing this, people still eat bananas. Why? Because they know that eating one banana a day, heck even two or three won’t hurt them. The same thing goes for fluoride. As long as fluoride is consumed in the correct size quantities that are recommended by the government and your dentist, it isn’t going to harm you in anyway. 

That’s my post for today. I hope that everyone has a great week! 

Monday, October 9, 2017

Meredith's Monday Musings: Troll Reviews

Hi Everyone!

Happy Monday! How are y’all doing? I’m doing fantastic! I got a lot of stuff done this weekend, which is awesome! :-) 

Today’s Meredith Monday Musing post is all about: Troll Reviewers!

For those of you who don’t know, a troll reviewer is a reviewer who constantly only leaves 1-2 star reviews on books. I’m sure this sounds crazy to some of you. Who would waste their time buying all these books only to leave nasty reviews for the authors to read. Sadly, this happens to authors more than I’d like to admit, especially since more and more authors are listing their books in Kindle Unlimited. 

I’ve been an author for over three years now and I still can’t really figure out why someone would go bashing an author’s books. There’s only one conclusion that I’ve come to. The troll reviewer is a hateful person, who is very upset with their own life and instead of trying to fix themselves, they take their anger out on authors. 

Let me make one thing clear. I know that as an author, I’m going to receive a couple 1-2 star reviews on my stories because not everyone is going to enjoy what I write. That’s okay with me. In fact, the 1-2 star reviews that leave constructive criticism on ways for me to improve my stories are actually very helpful to me as an author. The 1-2 star reviews that are left by troll reviewers are different though than someone who just plain doesn’t like my book. These reviews will sound something like, “This book sucks.” Or “I only read a couple pages of this book and had to put it down because it was so gross!” Or, and this is my personal favorite, “I read the blurb and knew I was going to hate this story even before I read it.” 

Do any of the three examples of reviews left by troll reviewers sound constructive at all? No, they don’t because they aren’t. Like I said earlier, I think that the people who are known as “troll reviewers” are just very unhappy people and are taking their anger and unhappiness out on us authors. 

Honestly, I pity troll reviewers. I try to imagine myself ever being in a position where I am that depressed about my life where I have to go attacking someone else and making them feel bad to make me feel good. I really hope to God that I never feel the need to do this. In the end, these reviewers are upsetting authors and worst, they’re going to end up feeling bad again in a few minutes, so why keep doing something that doesn’t help make them feel better? Plus, when a troll reviewer buys a book just to trash it, they’re spending money that could be used on more enjoyable things. Seriously, why spend your money on something you know that you don’t like. For real, what’s the point? 

My advice to troll reviewers is go get some help. Therapy is awesome! Or if you don’t want to go to therapy, go exercise. I know, people hate exercising, but seriously, this is one of the best ways to naturally make yourself happy. 

My advice to authors is to ignore these reviews. Honestly, they don’t mean anything. In fact, 1-2 star reviews actually help sell books. Readers will read them and want to know if they’d feel the same way as the troll reviewers, so they buy the book. In most cases, they don’t and then they end up buying the rest of your books. So, I guess there is a small positive to these awful reviews. Anywho, just remember to ignore the reviews and not let them get to you. Each of us is a great writer and we just need to remember that, no matter what the troll reviewers would like you to believe instead. 

Well, that’s all I got for now! I hope y’all have a great week!

Monday, October 2, 2017

Meredith's Monday Musings: Cancer

Hi All!

Happy Monday! How are y’all doing today? We’re officially in October. I can’t believe it! Time is moving by way too fast! 

Today’s Meredith Monday Musings post is all about: Cancer. 

Can I say right now, I hate cancer. There is nothing good about it. It sure as heck doesn’t help the person who has it. It isn’t fun for the loved ones of the person who has cancer. I’m sure that the nurses and doctors who work in the oncology department don’t look forward to having to go to work and tell patients the sad news about their disease. (But thank gosh they do this job, because they’re one of the many things that help make this unbearable illness, bearable.) But does everyone get my point? Cancer sucks. 

A couple weeks ago, a very close family friend of mine was diagnosed with Stage 3 inflammatory HER2 breast cancer. When I found out about this, my heart broke. This woman has always eaten healthy. I’ve never seen her take a sip of pop, she doesn’t eat meat, or hardly any sweets. She basically ate all organic fruits, vegetables, fish, healthy fats, and grains. On top of that, she exercised at lest four times a week. She truly was the picture of health and one of the sweetest most caring people I know. Yet, she still got cancer. And it really makes me wonder why. Why does it seem that the best people are the ones to come down with this deadly disease? 

When I heard the news about my friend, it made me want to drop everything and go see her. The only problem is, she lives five hours away, so I’d have to take off work, book a hotel, make arrangements for my pets, pack, etc. Unfortunately, right now I’m just not able to visit. This is so hard for me. I want to be by my friend in her time of need and help her in anyway I can, but I can’t right now. It’s an awful feeling, feeling like you’re completely helpless to go help out someone else. 

I know that I’m not the only one who has ever experienced this situation. It’s awful to think about, but I’m sure if I asked any adult, every one of them would have known someone who had cancer. This is so sad to me because I know how hard it is to watch a loved one or friend go through this awful disease. I wish there was a way for me to snap my fingers, so no one had to get cancer and thus, no one would have to walk the journey of watching someone they care about fight this awful disease. 

I know doctors are doing everything they can to try and find a cure for cancer, but I wish they would discover it like tomorrow. Chemo drugs are crazy expensive. Besides that, the drugs seem to do just as much damage to one’s body as the cancer does. I know these meds are doing their jobs when they make a person sick, but it doesn’t make it any easier for the person getting sick or the one holding their hair back. 

So do y’all get my point? Cancer sucks. There are absolutely no redeeming qualities with it. I wouldn’t even wish it on my worst enemy. 

With all of the above being said, it really is easy to focus on the negatives of cancer, there are so many of them. However, it is also very important for both you and the person who has cancer that you try and stay positive through this battle. If you only focus on the negatives, then it’s going to make the situation a heck of a lot worse. Try staying positive, tell yourself that the person/you will get through this. As hard as this is, each time that you see your loved one/you dealing with one of the awful side effects of the chemo or radiation, remind yourself that these side effects are permanent and it’s actually a sign that the meds are working and getting rid of the cancer. That’s good. And most importantly, don’t ever give up hope that your loved one/you can beat this disease, because you can! You just have to believe! 

I’m sorry for today’s depressing post. 

I hope y’all have a good day!