The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides - Book Review

PlotAlicia Berenson’s life is seemingly perfect. A famous painter married to an in-demand fashion photographer, she lives in a grand house with big windows overlooking a park in one of London’s most desirable areas. One evening her husband Gabriel returns home late from a fashion shoot, and Alicia shoots him five times in the face, and then never speaks another word.
Alicia’s refusal to talk, or give any kind of explanation, turns a domestic tragedy into something far grander, a mystery that captures the public imagination and casts Alicia into notoriety. The price of her art skyrockets, and she, the silent patient, is hidden away from the tabloids and spotlight at the Grove, a secure forensic unit in North London.
Theo Faber is a criminal psychotherapist who has waited a long time for the opportunity to work with Alicia. His determination to get her to talk and unravel the mystery of why she shot her husband takes him down a twisting path into his own motivations—a search for the truth…

The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah - Book Review

PlotFrance, 1939 In the quiet village of Carriveau, Vianne Mauriac says goodbye to her husband, Antoine, as he heads for the Front. She doesn’t believe that the Nazis will invade France...but invade they do, in droves of marching soldiers, in caravans of trucks and tanks, in planes that fill the skies and drop bombs upon the innocent. When France is overrun, Vianne is forced to take an enemy into her house, and suddenly her every move is watched; her life and her child’s life is at constant risk. Without food or money or hope, as danger escalates around her, she must make one terrible choice after another. 
Vianne’s sister, Isabelle, is a rebellious eighteen-year-old girl, searching for purpose with all the reckless passion of youth. While thousands of Parisians march into the unknown terrors of war, she meets the compelling and mysterious Gäetan, a partisan who believes the French can fight the Nazis from within France, and she falls in love as only the young can...completely. When he …

Inheritence by Balli Kaur Jaswal - Book Review

PlotInheritance is a nation’s coming-of-age story, seen through the sharp lens of a traditional Punjabi family as it gradually unravels.
Set in Singapore between the 1970’s and 1990’s, Inheritance follows the familial fissures that develop after teenaged Amrit disappears in the middle of the night. Although her absence is brief, she returns as a different person.

Over two decades, as Singapore’s political, social and cultural landscapes change, the family’s attempts to cope with the shifts—those coming from outside and from within—lead to some disastrous consequences. With the traditional expectations of their country on the one hand, and their own volition on the other, Amrit’s family must avoid imploding. How do we confront our legacies, and, when necessary, how do we accept change? Inheritance is a universal story of family, identity and belonging.
ReviewThis is the traumatic and moving story of one family set against the political and social changes that Singapore has undergone since…

A Breath Of Fresh Air by Amulya Malladi - Book Review

On the night of December 3, 1984, Anjali waits for her army officer husband to pick her up at the train station in Bhopal, India. In an instant, her world changes forever. Her anger at his being late turns to horror when a catastrophic gas leak poisons the city air. Anjali miraculously survives. Her marriage does not.

A smart, successful schoolteacher, Anjali is now remarried to Sandeep, a loving and stable professor. Their lives would be nearly perfect, if not for their young son’s declining health. But when Anjali’s first husband suddenly reappears in her life, she is thrown back to the troubling days of their marriage with a force that impacts everyone around her.
Her first husband’s return brings back all the uncertainty Anjali thought time and conviction had healed–about her decision to divorce, and about her place in a society that views her as scandalous for having walked away from her arranged marriage. As events unfold, feelings she had guarded like gold begin to leak away …

Something Borrowed by Emily Giffin - Book Review

Something Borrowed tells the story of Rachel, a young attorney living and working in Manhattan. 

Rachel has always been the consummate good girl—until her thirtieth birthday, when her best friend, Darcy, throws her a party. That night, after too many drinks, Rachel ends up in bed with Darcy's fiancé. Although she wakes up determined to put the one-night fling behind her, Rachel is horrified to discover that she has genuine feelings for the one guy she should run from. As the September wedding date nears, Rachel knows she has to make a choice. In doing so, she discovers that the lines between right and wrong can be blurry, endings aren't always neat, and sometimes you have to risk all to win true happiness. 

This is the first novel by author Emily Giffin that I have read. Though I absolutely love the author, I found this book average and predictable. 
Thinking about the situation between Rachel and Dex, I know what they are doing is wrong, and no matter how much I wanted…

Reflections - April A To Z Blogging Challenge 2019

This was my 3rd year of participation in the A2ZChallenge. I am definitely proud that I successfully completed it again this year.....especially this year, as it has been extremely difficult to get through with the challenge this time around!

While I was somewhat organized by having the individual topics all ready before the start of the challenge (and this was truly helpful), the actual posts were written every day. So in between balancing home, kids, work and a family medical emergency, I am mighty proud to have managed to bring out all the blog posts on time! God knows how I love a good challenge and hate leaving things incomplete and that's what prevented me from bailing out midway.
My theme this year was "The Mouth-Body Connect" and you can read all of my blog posts here.
Unfortunately, I did not get a chance to visit the other blogs like I had originally planned, or also reply back to many comments on my posts, which I will do soon!  But I will sign up for the "R…

Zinc Deficiency & Oral Health (April A To Z Blogging Challenge 2019)

Zinc is one of the most beneficial elements when it comes to maintaining oral health. Zinc is a trace mineral, and can naturally be found in saliva. It has been proven to fight against the growth of bacteria and plaque, which can decay teeth and gum tissues, causing cavities and gum disease.

How does Zinc do this?
Zinc doesn’t strengthen your enamel in the same way that fluoride does, but it can still help with reducing possible demineralization of your teeth and may even help remineralize your teeth. Because of this, the chances you will experience tooth decay or have cavities is reduced. Zinc may help avoid common gum diseases, including gingivitis and other mild periodontal issues. 
What Does Zinc Have to do with Bleeding Gums?

You might be wondering why zinc is so important to our gums. This is because zinc helps with wound healing.Researchsuggests that periodontal health is significantly better with a diet containing zinc. When paired with vitamin A, zinc will help transportvitamin A…

Yeast Infection & Oral Health (April A To Z Blogging Challenge 2019)

Yeast is all around us. For the most part, the tiny fungus does more good than harm. But some types of yeast can cause illness, such as a yeast infection in the throat. Also known as oropharyngeal candidiasis, or oral thrush, some people are more likely than others to develop a yeast infection in their mouth or throat.

Symptoms: Oral thrush in adults generally appears as thick, white or cream-colored deposits (spots) on the mucous membrane of the mouth (wet parts of the inside of the mouth).The mucosa (mucous membrane) may appear swollen and slightly red. The spots may be raised. There may be discomfort or a burning sensation.If the cream or white-colored deposits are scraped, bleeding may occur.The white spots may join together to form larger ones, also known as plaques; these may then take on a grayish or yellowish color.Occasionally, the affected area simply becomes red and sore, with no detectable white spots.Individuals who wear dentures may have areas that are constantly red and s…

Xeroderma Pigmentosum & Dental Health (April A To Z Blogging Challenge 2019)

Xeroderma Pigmentosum is a rare dermatological autosomal recessive disorder that manifests itself early in life as severe sunburn usually after a short exposure to sunlight. The prime characteristic features include photosensitivity, hyperpigmentation and ichthyosis in sun exposed areas, and an increase in the risk of basocellular and squamous cell carcinomas and melanomas of the skin and eyes.

There is no definitive cure for the disease. Avoidance of ultraviolet radiation, use of protective clothing, sunscreens, oral retinoids, 5-fluorouracil and regular consultations with dermatologists, ophthalmologists, neurologists and dentists forms an important part of the treatment protocol. 
Some common oral manifestations associated with Xeroderma Pigmentosum are  leukoplakiaerythroplakiaActinic cheilitissquamous cell carcinoma of the tip of the tongue and lips Dental considerations: Use of a UV light meter in dental clinics to make sure all light sources the patient is exposed to (dental curing…

Weight & Oral Health (April A To Z Blogging Challenge 2019)

Did you know that how much you weigh could have an impact on your teeth and gums, and that following the wrong diet might adversely affect your oral health? 

You might want to add regular exercise and maintaining a healthy weight to your oral health care routine of regular brushing, flossing and visits to the dentist. According to a study by Japanese researchers, people with a healthy body weight and high levels of physical fitness had a lower incidence of severe periodontitis (gum disease).
Excessive weight is a considerable public health problem. The condition is the result of cultural, environmental, socioeconomic, behavioral, genetic, and metabolic factors. Overweight children have an increased chance of becoming overweight or obese adults and developing hypertension, type II diabetes, cardiovascular disease, orthopedic problems, sleep apnoea, and asthma which greatly affect their quality of life 
In a study involving obese patients, researchers found that those who opted for weight …

Vitamin Deficiency & Oral Health (April A To Z Blogging Challenge 2019)

Malnutrition affects oral health and poor oral health in turn, may lead to malnutrition. Among the essential factors present in the diet, we find a group of substances known as vitamins. These substances are very important for the tissues, as they are related to tissue respiration and other biologic processes. In the absence of some of these vitamins from the diet, deficiency states develop which show characteristic lesions in the oral tissues.

Many doctors look for signs in the oral cavity to diagnose an underlying vitamin deficiency. The important vitamins needed for proper nutrition are Vitamin A (Retinoids), Vitamin D, Vitamin E, Vitamin K, Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid), Vitamin B1 (Thiamine), Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), Vitamin B3 (Niacin), Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic Acid), Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine), Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin), B9 (Folic Acid).
Oral manifestation of Vitamin A deficiency: Due to increased keratin production, salivary glands can be blocked by keratinDelayed eruption of teethEnamel h…

Ulcerative Colitis & Oral Health (April A To Z Blogging Challenge 2019)

Ulcerative colitis is a chronic tissue destructive inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) of autoimmune origin, characterized by predominant bowel symptoms such as abdominal pain, diarrhea and relapse and remitting rectal bleeding leading to loss of weight. Extraintestinal manifestations, including involvement of the oral cavity, may also occur. 

Ulcerative colitis exhibits intestinal and extraintestinal complications. Local complications include: ischiorectal abscessrectal prolapsehemorrhoidsfibrous stricturepseudopolyposisperforationmassive hemorrhagecarcinoma of colon.  Extraintestinal complications are common in Ulcerative colitis and may dominate the clinical picture. Some of these occur during relapse of intestinal disease others appear unrelated to disease severity. These include:  erythema nodosumpyoderma gangrenous skin eruptionsuveitisarthritistransient hepatitisvenous thrombosis As the oral cavity is the portal of entry and part of the gastrointestinal tract, oral manifestations do oc…

Thyroid & Oral Health (A to Z Blogging Challenge 2019)

The thyroid gland is a bilobular structure that lies on either side of the trachea.The thyroid is the major regulator of metabolism and affects all of the bodily functions. Thyroid dysfunction is the second most common glandular disorder of the endocrine system which may rear its head in any system in the body including the mouth. 

The oral cavity is adversely affected by either an excess or deficiency of these hormones. The patient with a thyroid dysfunction, as well as the patient taking medications for it, requires proper risk management before considering dental treatment by the dentist.
Hypothyroidism:Hypothyroidism is defined by a decrease in thyroid hormone production and thyroid gland function. 

Causes chronic thyroiditis (Hashimoto's disease)radioactive iodinesurgerypharmacological agents such as lithium and amiodarone
Symptoms of Hypothyroidism slower metabolic rateweight gainlethargyintolerance to colddry and cool skinpuffiness of the face and eyelidsblood pressure appears to…