Dear Readers: Today is Sept. 11, Patriot Day. Take a moment to remember why we honor this day, and why we are so privileged to live in a country where we are free, because of the brave.

Dear Readers: Have you gotten spam text messages? Companies use computer software to put together random phone numbers that then shoot out text messages to these numbers, in the hopes of getting a nibble. It’s a new way to advertise.

Annoying, yes. To put a halt to this, report the spam to your cell provider. To stop legit text messages from companies you’ve done business with, replying “STOP” usually does the trick.

Dear Heloise: Here's my hint for getting ahead in school:

I always sit in the front row of the classroom, for the following reasons:

● It's easier to see the blackboard.

● I won't be distracted by other students.

● I won't be afraid to ask questions.

Gina T., Lubbock, Tex.

Gina T.: This works for college, and for grade and high school, too. Never feel intimidated to ask questions. The question you ask is what everyone else is wondering, too! Sitting up front is a great idea.

Dear Heloise: I had bad headaches, and my doctor asked me if I'd ever been checked for TMJ (temporomandibular joint disorder).

Turns out, my jaws were out of line. My dentist made me a mouthpiece, and no more headaches!

Candy S., Middletown, Ohio

Candy S.: Here’s the takeaway: It’s always good to look for the root cause of pain. Thanks for your letter, Candy.

Dear Heloise: It is refreshing to see that we are using more recyclable items, especially plastics. Most communities have recycle programs that make it easy for consumers to get on board with the recycle effort.

I have to wonder why container manufacturers hide the recycle symbol? It would be nice if there were some indication on the outside of the packaging that recyclable materials are inside.

Don in The Villages, Fla.

Don in The Villages: Good point! Look carefully for the recycling code.

Dear Heloise: My dermatologist recommends that I use a moisturizer on my face to help with a skin disorder.

Why do men's moisturizers have such pungent scents? My guess is that most of us men prefer fragrance-free over the perfume smell that most manufacturers are using in their products.

James Cobb in Texas

James Cobb in Texas: Ask your doctor if a moisturizer labeled for “Sensitive Skin” might work okay for you. These usually are fragrance-free.

Dear Heloise: When faced with trying to read print that is too small to see easily on medications or products, take a picture of it with your smartphone and then use your fingers to enlarge the photo and text.

Becky L. in San Antonio

Heloise’s column appears six days a week at washingtonpost.com/advice. Send a hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, TX 78279-5000, or email it to Heloise@Heloise.com.

2018, King Features Syndicate