July 2016 Newsletter

Summer is here!

Ronald C. Auvenshine, DDS, PhD

Dr. Ronald Auvenshine
Dr. Ronald Auvenshine

It is the month that we celebrate the 4th of July. July 4th is always a special time for me and my family. We usually enjoy getting together having picnics, swimming, and enjoying the freedoms that we have as Americans. I am a patriotic person and I believe in duty to our country. I was proud to serve as a captain in the US Army Dental Corps from 1971 to 1973. I was stationed at Fort Riley Kansas (home of the First Division) for the duration of my military service. I consider those two years at Fort Riley to be the formative years of my dental career. It offered me an opportunity to rotate through all of the specialties of dentistry as well as to have time to plan my future in dentistry. I was fortunate to be allowed two tours of duty at Walter Reed Medical Center in Washington DC. My commanding officer was responsible for referring TMJ patients to me as a young dental officer. It was during those two years of service that I decided to seek additional training in the field of orofacial pain. Through the G.I. Bill, I was able to get additional funding for continuing my education which allowed me to complete graduate school without having to have my wife go back to work. All in all, it was a wonderful experience.

When I was inducted into the military, the United States had a draft. Every young man, once he reached his 19th birthday, was a subject to be called to military service. The draft was abolished in the late 70s, and since that time, we have relied on a volunteer army. There are good points and bad points to a volunteer army. Personally, I feel that it is every man’s duty to serve his country. There are so many success stories of those who have served their country through the military. I have seen many young men who were undecided about their future be directed toward education and a career as a direct result of their military service. I am proud to be an American. I am proud to salute the flag. The flag will definitely be flying in the yard of the Auvenshine’s the weekend of July 4th.

July is another busy month for Dr. Pettit and me. We will be traveling to New Orleans on July 14th to attend a Continuum Symposium on TMD and Orofacial Pain at LSU school of Dentistry. Dr. Pettit has entered the Continuum program for the years 2016 – 2017. He will attend five, two-day sessions and will obtain over 120 hours of continuing education in the field of TMD and orofacial pain upon completion of that program. Dr. Pettit plans to sit for his boards in orofacial pain in April 2017.

Dr. Pettit and I continue to work on our papers of the research we did on the hyoid bone. As many of you know, Dr. Pettit received his Master’s degree in Dental Science by completing an extensive research analysis of the Hyoid Bone. We will be writing more about the hyoid bone in subsequent newsletters. We will even post the articles on our website once they are in publication.

I am looking forward to August and September. These are months that will allow for some personal travel as well as advancing new programs for practicing dentists in diagnosis and management of complex dental patients.

As you can see, we continue to be a busy about our work. Our goal is to provide you the very best care for your TMD as well as relief from your pain and discomfort. You are our greatest asset and we will continue to work diligently on your behalf.

Ronald C. Auvenshine, DDS, PhD
Diplomate, American Board of Orofacial Pain

Dr. Pettit’s Tip for Healthy Living

Nathan J. Pettit, DMD, MSD

Dr. Nathan Pettit
Dr. Nathan Pettit

As a feature in the MedCenter TMJ newsletter, we include a short and practical tip of the month for optimizing nutrition. Research has shown over the last 45 years that a healthy diet—notably one rich in fruits and vegetables— together with regular physical activity, can prevent and treat many age-related diseases.

As a whole, the lifestyle of many North Americans is out of balance with our physiology. We are also living longer than our ancestors did, so preventing age-related diseases is more important today than in the past.

This month’s suggestion is simple. Keep your plate colorful! Color is a major indicator of nutrient value, and a variety of colors from fresh fruits and vegetables will not only make your plate more attractive and appetizing, but it will also increase intake of important antioxidant phytochemicals your body can benefit from. The USDA recommends half of our plate be filed with colorful fruits and vegetables at every meal. Be sure the colors are naturally occurring and not merely added by the manufacturer for aesthetic value.

A special note to those managing TMD: remember to choose foods that can be prepared soft in consistency. Optimizing nutritional choices will help us reach our goal of a long and healthy life.

Nathan J. Pettit, DMD, MSD

Seasonal Produce to Eat This Summer

Dr. Pettit pointed out thWatermelonat a diet rich in fruits and vegetables is important for overall health. Summer is the perfect time to load your plate with fruits and veggies because fresh produce is in abundance. Get your fill of the fruits and vegetables below while they’re in season.

Watermelons – Watermelons are over 91% water, which can help you keep hydrated during the warm months. This summer BBQ staple also contains a number of vitamins and nutrients, including lycopene, an antioxidant that naturally protects against sun damage.

Tomatoes – It’s the fruit that seems more like a vegetable! Nutrient- rich tomatoes are in season during the summer, and they’re also a great source of skin-protecting lycopene.

Apricots – Get a healthy dose of beta-carotene and fiber with apricots.

Peaches – It’s one of the most popular fruits in the south, and during summer vitamin C filled peaches are in abundance.

Avocados – Avocados are a great source of healthy fats that help our bodies absorb nutrients. Add a few slices to your salads to get the full benefit of all those veggies.

Strawberries – Strawberries are a sweet source of antioxidants. However, you may want to consider getting organic strawberries since they top the Dirty Dozen list.

Mangos – Mangos are a tropical fruit that are sweet and juicy. Despite the sweetness mangos are fat free and have 20 different nutrients.

Nectarines – Nectarines are a baby cousin of the peach. Nutrition-wise they are almost identical, but nectarines don’t have a fuzzy skin.

Cherries on rustic wooden background

Cherries – Saccharine cherries are a heart healthy snack with minerals like potassium, which helps keep blood pressure in check.

Carrots – Most people already know carrots are a good source of vitamins and often show up in hearty stews during the fall and winter. But carrots are actually in season during the summer. They can be sliced thin for refreshing salads or roasted on the grill.

Bell Peppers – Talk about a rainbow of color. Green, yellow, orange and red bell peppers are one of the most nutrient-rich vegetables on the planet. Fiber, folate, vitamin E and vitamin B12 are just some of the nutrients you can get from bell peppers.

Cucumbers – Even in the heat of summer cucumbers can stay up to 20 degrees cooler than the outside temperature. Add them to salad, make cucumber water or slice them up for a refreshing snack.

Green Beans – The list of vitamins, antioxidants and minerals in green beans is very long. Catechins, betacarotene, silicon, vitamin B6 and B12 are just a few nutrients found in green beans.

Spinach – This super food is in-season almost year round in many places. In cooler areas it peaks during the summer months.

Chard – If you haven’t tried this dark leafy green you’re in for a treat. Chard is best sautéed with a little bit of olive oil and can be used in as a substitute for spinach.

Summer Squash – The name says it all! Summer squash is harvested while still immature, but they still have a full helping of potassium, vitamin C, magnesium and more.


Fresh, Healthy and Delicious – Fruit Salad Everyone Will Want to Eat

Why eat just one fruit or vegetable when you can eat several of them all at once. This Grilled Peach and Mozzarella Salad will make a delicious and refreshing meal on a hot summer day or at your next BBQ. We’re giving it a twist by adding watermelon as well! Avocado can also be included for an extra boost of healthy fat and nutrients.


  • 5 yellow flesh peaches
  • 1 pound watermelon sliced into rounds (optional)
  • 3 green onions, sliced
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon lime zest
  • 1/2 cup fresh lime juice
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 3/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons tequila (optional)


  • Peel and chop one peach for the dressing.
  • Cut the remaining four peaches into 28 quarter-inch thick rounds. Discard the pits. If using watermelon cut the fruit into rounds as well.
  • Using a food processor, blend the chopped peach, green onions, cilantro, honey, salt, lime zest, lime juice, cumin, chili powder and, if desired, the tequila. Process for 10 to 15 seconds until smooth. Add the olive oil and pulse 3-4 times.
  • Coat the grill grate with cooking spray before heating. Preheat grill to 350400° or medium-high heat.
  • Brush both sides of the peach rounds and watermelon (if using) with the dressing.
  • Grill the fruit for 3-5 minutes on each side or until grill marks appear. Keep the grill lid closed while cooking.
  • While the fruit is cooking, lay a layer of greens out evenly on four plates.
  • Once the fruit is done grilling, begin alternately layering the grilled peach and/or watermelon rounds with cheese slices. There should be four fruit rounds and four slices of cheese per plate.
  • Drizzle the remaining peach dressing over each fruit/cheese stack and garnish with a spring of cilantro.

You’ll have a nutrient-rich salad for four that celebrates summer season produce!

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