Do you know of any vitamins for gum irritation? When I floss, my gums bleed.
You may need more vitamin D. A study of more than 6,000 Americans showed that those with the highest levels of vitamin D in their bloodstream had gums that were 20% less likely to bleed when probed (American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, September 2005). The investigators hypothesize that vitamin D helps fight inflammation.
I fall asleep without trouble, but I wake at 1 or 2 a.m. and have a terrible time getting back to sleep. What can I do?
Ask your physician about Sonata, a short-acting prescription sleeping pill to combat early-morning wakefulness. If you have at least four hours before rising, Sonata should allow you to get more sleep without grogginess.
My father takes atenolol, Zocor, aspirin, Norvasc and lisinopril for his high blood pressure and cholesterol. Now he has almost no energy, complains of dizziness and seems depressed. Could these pills be contributing to his symptoms?
Beta blockers such as atenolol, metoprolol and propranolol can slow the pulse. Some people also develop fatigue, depression and asthma. A review of atenolol and similar drugs published this month in the Lancet medical journal suggests that they might not be as helpful as different blood pressure drugs. A doctor should determine whether your father's blood pressure pills are causing his symptoms.
Joe Graedon, a pharmacologist, and Teresa Graedon, an expert in medical anthropology and nutrition, can be reached at People's Pharmacy, King Features Syndicate, 888 7th Ave., New York, NY 10019, or at email@example.com.