December 2013 Newsletter!

Merry Christmas from MedCenter TMJ!

By Dr. Ronald Auvenshine

Dr. Ronald Auvenshine
Dr. Ronald Auvenshine

December is my favorite month of the year. The reason is the celebration of the holiday season. As a Christian, there are two special days which are extremely important to me. These are Christmas and Easter. I have so many memories regarding the Christmas holidays. As a child, I can remember the excitement of receiving that “special gift” under the tree. All of the thoughts, plans and expectations in the selection of the one gift was just more excitement than I could stand. We always celebrated our tree on Christmas morning. I remember having great difficulty going to sleep on Christmas Eve. The joy of waking up in the morning and opening my gift was overwhelming. These are all memories that will burn in my heart forever.

As we enter the Christmas season, it is my Christmas prayer that you thoroughly enjoy the season. These are precious moments for us all.

The month of December is usually a short month in the office for me. However, we try our best to make sure that everyone’s needs are met. I close the office between Christmas and New Year’s to give my staff an opportunity to spend time with their families. I appreciate your patience with us as we plan to have special moments with our families, as we hope you will do as well.

This year has been a very memorable year for all of us. There have been many events, locally, state-wide and nationally, which have marked 2013 as a pivotal year in history. Probably the most significant event was the attempt to roll out “The Affordable Healthcare Act,” better known as “Obama Care”. The failure of the website, “,” is a glaring sign that the government cannot perform the simple task of structuring a website for enrolling people. If they can’t do that, then how are they going to manage everyone’s healthcare and health insurance? The confidence of the American people in the federal government’s ability to handle anything has dropped to an all-time low. Politicians on both sides of the aisle are doing nothing but finger-pointing and deferring the responsibility and blame for these mistakes. History shows that the private sector can make innovations and changes much quicker, cheaper and better than a centralized government. It is my hope that as we approach 2014, more people will understand that these types of programs, such as healthcare, can be administered at the state and local level better and more efficiently than at the national level.

I am very excited for MedCenter TMJ. In August, I contracted with a firm in Austin to rebuild my website. The website is now up and running, and is flexible enough to include future additions and modifications. I am interested in my website being a place of instruction to both patients and doctors. I plan to have a “doctors only” section where I can present lectures to doctors throughout the world who want to learn more about TMD and Orofacial Pain. I like the look of the new website, and I invite each of you to visit and make your comments. We are now linked with social media such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube. This gives us a broader scope of connectivity, which is the direction that businesses are now going in order to reach more people.

2014 will be a very important year for me. I am extremely excited about my future plans. I am excited to let you know that I will not be retiring. The practice will continue to be extremely viable, active and growing. I have been blessed with good health. I have a passion for what I do, and I plan to do it as long as God will give me the strength to do so. I’ve been asked many times over the last few years, “When do you plan to retire?” My answer has been and will continue to be the same: “Retirement is the ability to do what you’ve always wanted to do, but never had time to.” It just so happens that I wanted to be a dentist all of my life. It is a dream come true. It is my passion. So, my retirement is to continue to do what I love doing, which is treating patients who have pain and helping them to live better lives.

I wish each of you a Happy Holidays and a Merry Christmas for 2013. May the joy of the season fill your heart in such a powerful way that this holiday season will be the most memorable one of your life. Our country has become separated from the inside out. What our country needs is more love, respect and compatibility with one another. I pray that in this holiday season we will see a coming together of this nation, the return of the principles that made us great!

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays,
Ronald C. Auvenshine DDS, PhD

Winter Weather Is Upon Us

It doesn’t matter what part of the country you live in, the winter months are officially here. That means arctic blasts of cold air can sweep down reaching almost all parts of the United States. It’s important that sufferers of TMD pay special attention to their ears. Failure to protect your ears can result in ear pain, which in turn leads to a build-up of fluid on your jaw joint. Never go outside in cold or windy weather without some sort of ear protection. Wear a hat, ear muffs or a warm knit scarf around your ears. If you’re in a pinch because you haven’t dug out your winter gear yet, place cotton in your ears instead.


Health Notice

Flu season is once again upon us. Catching the flu is not just an inconvenience, it’s a serious condition that can lead to hospitalization and possibly death.
Influenza, more commonly known as the flu, is a respiratory illness caused by contraction of this virus. Catching the flu is not the same thing as catching a cold. The flu virus is more serious. It causes respiratory tissues to become inflamed, resulting in coughing, sneezing, fever, aches, chills, runny nose, congestion and fatigue.

Protect Yourself


Anyone can get the flu, even healthy, young adults. The best way to reduce your chances of infection is to get a flu vaccine. Not only will you provide protection for yourself, you also reduce the odds a flu virus will spread throughout the community.
Fear of needles is no excuse

Fear of needles is no excuse

Many vaccine options are usually available. One can receive the standard shot administered through a needle. However, the vaccine can also be given in the form of a nasal spray. If you hate needles (and who doesn’t!) ask around. Find a clinic that offers options.

Where to go

You no longer have to visit your doctor to get a flu shot. Nowadays, the vaccines are administered in all sorts of different locations. Many health clinics, pharmacies, public schools and corporate offices offer flu shots.

When to go

The time to get vaccinated is now! Vaccines are typically offered anywhere between October to late February. But the best way to protect yourself and those around you is to get a flu shot as soon as possible. Don’t wait until there’s an outbreak. Get vaccinated today.

Recipe of the Month

When it gets cold outside, we want hot comfort food that fills our stomachs and warms our souls. Try this recipe for SPEEDY CHICKEN POTPIE. It can be prepared in less than 20 minutes and it’s healthy—low in fat, carbohydrates and calories.


Photo: Randy Mayor; Styling: Leigh Ann Ross
Photo: Randy Mayor; Styling: Leigh Ann Ross
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth, divided
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 cups refrigerated diced potatoes with onion (such as Simply Potatoes)
  • 2/3 cup frozen green peas and diced carrot blend
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried rubbed sage
  • 1/4 (15-ounce) package refrigerated pie crust dough (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 425°.
  2. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add chicken to pan; sprinkle with salt. Sauté 5 minutes or until browned and done.
  3. While chicken cooks, bring 2 1/2 cups broth and bay leaf to a boil in a large saucepan. Add potatoes; cover and cook over medium-high heat 8 minutes. Stir in peas and carrots; cover and cook 2 minutes. Stir in chicken. Combine remaining 1/2 cup broth and flour; stir into potato mixture. Reduce heat to medium; cook 2 minutes or until bubbly and thick. Remove bay leaf. Stir in thyme, pepper, and sage.
  4. While potato mixture cooks, cut pie crust dough crosswise into 12 strips. Arrange on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake at 425° for 7 minutes or until browned and puffy. Top chicken mixture with pie crust strips, if you want.
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