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MARCH 1, 2019


Photo by Steve’s Freelance Photography



A HAPPY HEALTHY SMILE BrentCourt Professional Building: 1140 2nd St., Ste. A, Brentwood














Craig Chlebicki DDS Christopher Charles DDS





MARCH 1, 2019


MARCH 1, 2019




BrentCourt Dental Group – healthy smiles for life AMY SCHRADER


hile teeth are one of the strongest parts of your body, keeping

them healthy isn’t always easy. Besides brushing, flossing and using mouthwash, regular dental visits are vital to a healthy smile. BrentCourt Dental Group, the oldest ongoing dental practice operating in Brentwood today, uses modern technology, patient education and a team known for their expertise and gentle care to optimize their patients’ dental health. “We are a locally owned general and family dental practice that has served East Contra Costa County with exceptional care for over five generations of practice ownership,” said Dr. Craig Chlebicki of BrentCourt Dental Group. Chlebicki, who is originally from Huntington Beach, California, completed ON THE COVER: Drs Craig Chlebicki, standing, and Christopher Charles, seated, are part of the team that makes up BrentCourt Dental Group. Photo by Steve’s Freelance Photography.

Photo courtesy of BrentCourt Dental Group

The team at BrentCourt Dental Group works hard to bring a sense of fun and relaxation to each patient’s visit – making the overall dental experience easy and stress-free. his undergraduate degree at Cornell University. After graduating, he was commissioned as an officer in the United States Navy, serving a total of five deployments, including three to the Persian Gulf and one humanitarian mission to the Philippines. After the Navy, Chlebicki obtained his Doctor of Dental Surgery degree from the University of the Pacific. In addition to Chlebicki, Dr. Christopher Charles and Dr. Michael Lin are part of the team of dentists at BrentCourt. Charles, who followed in his father

and older brother’s dentistry footsteps, graduated from the University of the Pacific’s Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry as part of the Dental Honors Society. He is known to tailor treatments to each individual’s needs and has a passion for serving the community. Lin, who also completed his Doctor of Dental Surgery at the Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry, went on to complete a year-long advanced education residency in general dentistry in Oakland. Lin’s approach to dentistry stems from his belief

in treating patients as he would his own family and in working with them to find solutions to any of their needs, whether it’s relieving pain or improving their smile. “Together we are committed to meeting all of your dental needs and to providing you with a dental experience that is comfortable and pleasant each time you visit us,” said Chlebicki. To help them achieve this, BrentCourt Dental Group offers the benefits of stateof-the-art dental technology, including cutting-edge tools, equipment, techniques and materials to ensure their patients receive high-quality, gentle dental care. “Our dental practice has made many investments in technology that most people cannot see, but are present to improve patient care, patient safety and workplace safety,” said Chlebicki. “These include water treatment and purification systems to ensure clean treatment water. We’ve recently added three new top-ofthe-line sterilization units.” BrentCourt Dental Group also continually invests in the industry’s latest advances, such as cybersecurity systems to protect patient information, and technology that helps relieve anxiety for patients who dread visits to the dentist. “The fear of the dental office or certain dental procedures is a real concern see BrentCourt page 7B


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Topics to discuss before going under the knife


Asking the right questions prior to the procedure can calm nerves and help people approach pending surgeries with confidence rather than fear.

any people will find themselves on a surgeon’s table at one point or another. Professional athletes who get

injured frequently, and of course surgeons, may be accustomed to the surgical wings of hospitals, but the general public has no such familiarity. Perhaps due to that lack of familiarity, many people are nervous before an impending surgery. Asking the right questions prior to the procedure can calm nerves and help people approach pending surgeries with confidence rather than fear. Anesthesia Much of the fear people have in regard to surgery surrounds anesthesia. Few people want to be put completely under, but some surgeries may require that. General anesthesia affects the entire body, and this is the type administered during surgeries that require patients to be unconscious. Regional anesthesia affects a large area of the body, while local anesthesia only numbs a small part. Knowing which type of anesthesia will be administered during a surgery can prepare patients and their families in advance, and may even calm nerves. Length of surgery Patients and their families often want to know how long surgeries will last. Patients should discuss this with their physicians and surgeons, especially if family and friends will be in the waiting room while a surgery is performed. If surgeons note there’s a possibility that a surgery will be extended after it begins, patients should let family and

Photo courtesy of Metro Creative

Patients should not hesitate to ask as many questions as they need to before going in for surgery. friends know this, even if they don’t want to worry them. People in the waiting room will grow concerned and fearful, possibly unnecessarily, if a surgery is not completed within a certain amount of time. Pain Pain might be a side effect of surgery. Knowing this in

advance won’t raise alarm bells if patients are discharged and begin to experience pain upon arriving home. Ask surgeons if pain is a side effect of your surgery, and where the pain is likely to be felt and for how long. Many people are prescribed opioids to address pain after surgery, but such medications can be addictive. Ask about opioid alternatives, as well as any non-prescription relaxation techniques or therapies that may help manage pain. Blood clots Pain is not the only potential side effect of surgery. Some surgeries can increase patients’ risk of developing deep vein thrombosis, a type of blood clot that can travel to the lungs and block blood flow. Sometimes referred to as DVT, deep vein thrombosis can be deadly, though it’s often treatable when caught quickly. Certain factors, including age, whether or not you’re a smoker and a history of clots, can increase a person’s risk of developing DVT after surgery. Blood thinners may be prescribed as a precautionary measure. These are just a handful of topics to discuss with a physician prior to surgery. Patients should not hesitate to ask as many questions as they need to before going in for surgery. – Courtesy Metro Creative

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Rivertown Chiropractic for optimum health We try to make the body as strong as we can, so you are less likely to get sick and have good health, long-term, throughout your life.



hiropractic care isn’t just

Proper chiropractic care helps relieve a number of stressors in the body and promotes balance and overall health.

for back and neck pain. Its main focus is on the central

nervous system, which controls the entire body. By removing interference that prevents your body from performing optimally, chiropractic care is able to help people reach their optimum health. Rivertown Chiropractic in Antioch helps patients’ bodies stay balanced, which leads to healing. “We live our lives through our nervous system,” said Brandon Roberts, Rivertown Chiropractic’s founder. “Every thought we have, breath we take and the food we eat that is turned into the cells of our body, is controlled by our brain communicating with our body through the nervous system. We can have optimum health if this system is clear and balanced.” Roberts, who has been a chiropractor for over 10 years, has a bachelor’s degree in pharmacology and worked in pharmacies before pursuing a career as a chiropractor. “I got depressed by the state of healthcare and wanted a more natural way to

– Brandon Roberts,

Photo by Metro Creative

help people have better health,” he said. According to Roberts, stresses in the world, including physical, chemical and emotional, cause disease in the body and a shift into a sympathetic or fight-or-flight serviceable mode. “Chiropractic care helps the body get back to a more balanced healing neurology by improving the function of the spine and nervous system,” said Roberts. Roberts uses cutting-edge technology to identify the function and core health of the nervous system, including INSiGHT scanning. INSiGHT technology scans the nervous system and detects hidden patterns of stress and tension, identifies internal changes in the body, establishes a baseline and identifies potential problem areas. It also measures

muscle tone along the spine and pinpoints overactive and exhausted neuromuscular areas. “After looking at the core health of a person’s nervous system, I develop a core plan and track the progress to make sure it’s working,” said Roberts. According to Roberts, this type of chiropractic care has been extremely effective in pediatrics, which is his specialty. Roberts works with Special Haven, a non-profit corporation that provides a multisensory environment for the benefit and development of children and adults with special needs. “Chiropractic care impacts children with special needs in such a positive way,” said Roberts. “It improves their connection with the world around them and I have even seen

Rivertown Chiropractic non-verbal kids start to communicate.” Whether you are a child or an adult, the end goal for chiropractic care is the same. “We try to make the body as strong as we can, so you are less likely to get sick and have good health, long-term, throughout your life,” said Roberts. Patients of Rivertown Chiropractic can feel the difference. “I feel great and so revived,” said Antioch resident Alma Obegi-Waters. “You start feeling better and better and notice that your body is healing.” Rivertown Chiropractic is located at 215 G Street in Antioch. For more information call 925-494-0249 or visit them on Facebook at Rivertown-Chiropractic-2279933552228295/.


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Effective ways to alleviate stress


tress affects everyone at some point in their lives and does not discriminate based

on gender, nationality, ethnicity, economic status or age. The American Institute of Stress says job-related stress costs businesses millions of dollars each year due to unanticipated absences. In fact, work is the foremost source of stress for many adults. Although not all stress is bad and stress responses can motivate people to perform more effectively, repeated stress is a problem. The National Institute of Mental Health says routine stress that becomes chronic can suppress immune system functions, disrupt digestion, adversely affect sleep, and cause abnormal changes in reproductive systems. People who have chronic stress are often prone to frequent and severe viral infections, like colds and the flu. Repetitive stress may be the most difficult to recognize because it often becomes a part of daily life. Managing stress and anxiety involves finding techniques that work for each individual. While not every approach works for everyone, the following are five effective means to managing stress.

Deep breathing

Mindful breathing can be effective and only takes 10 minutes. Those battling stress can sit in a comfortable position with their eyes closed and imagine themselves in a relaxing place while slowly breathing in and out.

Take a break Removing oneself from a stressful situation for a little while can be helpful. A brief break of 15 to 20 minutes can provide a sense of calm.

Cognitive-behavioral therapy Harvard Medical School defines cognitive-behavioral therapy, or CBT, as a process of changing unhealthy thinking in order to change emotions. Therapists will identify negative thinking patterns and help patients learn to automatically replace them with healthy or positive thoughts.

Support network

Simply having someone to talk to can help tame stress. People should surround themselves with others they trust who are good listeners. These can be friends, family members or professional therapists. Talking oneself through stressful situations can provide The A American Psychological Agood goodsmile smilecan canopen opendoors. doors.AASheffield SheffieldSmile Smilecan canchange changelives. lives. relief. Association says research continues to Stress is a growing problem that can confirm the benefits of exercise in regard to combatting stress. Regular exercise has adversely affect one’s health in various ways. Relieving stress involves identifying long-term benefits, but even a 20 minute the stressor and taking a proactive exercise session during a stressful time approach before symptoms of stress can produce an immediate effect that lasts a few hours. worsen.


Photo courtesy Metro Creative

Prolonged stress can take a toll on the body.

The importance of knowing your family medical history


hen visiting a physician for the first time, patients

may notice an extensive section on family history on one of the requisite forms they fill out before meeting the doctor.

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Though it can be hard to remember family members’ conditions, doctors have good reason to ask about their patients’ family’s medical histories. Family medical histories can be vital to one’s own health care. The National Center for Biotechnology Information states that family history might be one of the strongest influences on a person’s risk for developing cancer, heart disease, stroke, diabetes and more. While you cannot modify your genetic makeup, knowing your family’s medical history can help you take the steps necessary to protect yourself. Family history reports can serve as warning signs for illnesses. These clues can help doctors prescribe certain screening tests at earlier ages to catch potential diseases when they are most treatable. For example, the U.S. National Library of Medicine says that healthcare professionals may recommend more frequent screenings (such as mammography or colonoscopy) and screening at an

earlier age for people at an increased risk of certain cancers. Doctors may recommend biannual checkups to stay apprised of any changes in health that may signal a risk. A thorough health care professional will record your family medical history and ask you to update it routinely in an effort to ensure you get the best, most effective care possible. You can help the process by having the information needed at the ready. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggest the following. ♦♦ Talk to family. Make a list of close family members and discuss any conditions or issues they might have had and at what ages. ♦♦ Learn about chronic diseases. Speak to your relatives about chronic diseases like diabetes or high blood pressure, being sure to ask how severe such issues were and if any required hospitalization. ♦♦ Plot your ancestry. Learn about your ancestry and if any medical issues are more common among people who share that ancestry. ♦♦ Record everything you learn. Keep the information where it can be easily accessed and updated. For example, My Family Health Portrait is a free, web-based tool to organize family health information and share it with doctors. Family history plays a key role in how doctors will approach patients’ treatment and preventive care. – Courtesy Metro Creative


MARCH 1, 2019




Understanding the facts about glaucoma


hen one’s vision is compromised, his or her whole life can

change in the blink of an eye. Many conditions can affect a person’s vision, and one of the more common is glaucoma, a leading cause of blindness across the globe. The global impact of glaucoma is significant. The World Health Organization estimates that 4.5 million people are blind due to glaucoma. In addition, the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB) notes that some estimates have suggested that there will be approximately 80 million people with glaucoma by 2020. If such estimates prove true, that would mean an


additional 20 million cases of glaucoma were diagnosed between 2010 and 2020. Vision loss is often associated with glaucoma. However, the National Eye Institute (NEI) notes that early detection and treatment can protect the eyes against serious vision loss. That makes it imperative that individuals from all walks of life learn about glaucoma, its risk factors and how to recognize it. What is glaucoma? Glaucoma is a term used to describe a group of diseases that damage the eye’s optic nerve. When such damage occurs, vision loss and even blindness can result. What is the optic nerve and why does it matter? The NEI notes that the optic nerve is a bundle of more than one million nerve fibers that connects the retina to the brain. The retina is the light-sensitive tissue at the back of the eye that contains

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to many people,” said Chlebicki. “We try to make the entire visit, from the initial phone call to the time you leave the office, as relaxing as possible.” To create a relaxing experience, BrentCourt has televisions in every treatment room; team members provide gentle care while often checking in on patients to ensure they are pain-free; rooms have natural light to minimize the feeling of being in a doctor’s office; and patients can


cells, which are sensitive to light. These cells trigger nerve impulses that pass via the optic nerve to the brain, where visual images are then formed. Because its role is so significant, the optic nerve must be healthy for good vision. What are the most common types of glaucoma? According to the IAPB, primary open angle glaucoma, or POAG, and primary angle closure glaucoma, or PACG, are the most common types of the condition. POAG is most common in white Caucasians and black individuals of African origin, while PACG, which is associated with a greater risk of blindness than POAG, is most common in people from southeast Asia. The Glaucoma Research Foundation says (GRF) that POAG develops slowly and is the most common form of glaucoma and is caused by the slow clogging of the drainage canals that

request nitrous oxide (laughing gas). Finally, educating patients about dental health, treatments and options helps to reduce dental anxiety. “We look at ourselves not only as healthcare providers but also as healthcare educators,” said Chlebicki, “educating and answering any questions a patient may have about treatment and/or prevention.” Combining all these elements results in happy, healthy smiles for their patients.

Smile of the Week

lex is our Smile of the Week. He attends Los Medanos College and loves to read. Alex hopes to become an author. What he liked best about his Brentwood Orthodontics experience was his new smile and the amazing orthodontists.

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“They are amazing,” said patient and Walnut Creek resident, Deanna Frederickson. “Every single person is so friendly, and they are extremely welcoming, professional and gentle in all of their procedures.” BrentCourt Dental Group is on-call for their patients 24/7, serving all ages and have Spanish-speaking staff. They are located at 1140 Second St., Suite A, in Brentwood. For more information visit or call 925-634-3503.

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produces increased pressure on the eye. PACG, which the GRF notes is quick to develop, results when the drainage canals are blocked, causing a sudden rise in intraocular pressure. What are the symptoms of glaucoma? Because POAG develops slowly, its symptoms often go unnoticed. Symptoms of PACG, however, are often very noticeable and may include severe and sudden eye pain; blurred vision; bright halos appearing around objects; eye redness, tenderness, and hardness; and nausea and vomiting. Can glaucoma be treated? While there is no cure for glaucoma and vision lost to it cannot be restored, the NEI notes that treatment for earlystage POAG can effectively delay progression of the disease. More information about glaucoma is available at – Courtesy Metro Creative


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Medical and Dental Professionals 03.01.19  

Find local Medical and Dental professionals in far East County.

Medical and Dental Professionals 03.01.19  

Find local Medical and Dental professionals in far East County.