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More vitamin D may mean
People with higher blood
levels of vitamin D may be less likely todevelop gum disease. Using
data from a national U.S. health survey, researchers found that
teenagers and adults with the highest blood levels of vitamin D were
20 percent less likely than those with the lowest levels to show signs
of gingivitis -
The current study, published in the American Journal of Clinical
Nutrition, is based on data from 6,700 Americans who took part in a
federal health study between 1988 and 1994. When the researchers broke
participants into five groups based on their blood levels of vitamin D,
they found that as vitamin levels rose, the risk of gingivitis inched
downward. The group with the highest vitamin D levels was 20 percent
less likely to have signs of gingivitis than the group with the lowest
levels-even with factors such as age and income taken into account.
Vitamin D is probably best known for its role in calcium absorption and
bone health. But recent research has suggested that it also
helps maintain a healthy immune system and may fight inflammation. It's
this anti-inflammatory benefit that may explain the vitamin's
link to healthier gums, Dietrich and his colleagues speculate.
Gingivitis arises when bacteria build up between the teeth and gums,
leading to inflammation and bleeding.
It is possible that vitamin D does not directly affect gum disease risk,
but is instead a marker of general health habits, according to
the researchers. Vitamin D levels depend in large part on sun exposure,
and people with higher levels may, for instance, spend
more time exercising outdoors. These same people may be especially
careful about brushing and flossing, the researchers point out.
SOURCE: American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, September 2005.
New Clue to Tooth Decay Could Lead
to Dental Advances
A study comparing antimicrobial
peptides (AMPs), a group of small proteins that occur
naturally in human saliva and act like antibiotics
against oral bacteria, could lead to new ways to
screen children for risk of tooth decay and protect them
against this common, chronic problem. The study,
"Salivary Antimicrobial Peptide Expression and Dental
Caries Experience in Children," published in the
September 2005 issue of the journal Antimicrobial Agents
and Chemotherapy, involved oral examinations performed
on 149 middle school children. Researchers at the
University of Washington in Seattle set out to determine
a possible correlation between dental caries prevalence
in children and salivary concentrations of three types
of antimicrobial peptides. Results found that
children with no tooth decay had higher levels of one
particular type of AMP (alpha defensin) than children
with tooth decay. The National Institute of Dental
and Craniofacial Research, part of the National
Institutes of Health, funded the study
Pacifers reduce risk of crib
deaths, study finds
Research shows SIDS cut by 90 percent when 'dummy' used
-Baby pacifiers can reduce the risk of sudden infant
death syndrome, the leading cause of death in babies under a year old,
according to new research published on Friday. Scientists in the United
States found babies who used a pacifier, also known as a “dummy,” while
they slept had a 90 percent reduced risk of crib death compared to other
babies. Our results also provide some evidence that use of a dummy may
reduce the impact of other risk factors for SIDS, especially those
related to adverse sleep conditions.
Most cot deaths occur between two to four months of age and are more
prevalent in boys than girls. The cause is unknown but lying the
baby down on its stomach, parental smoking and old mattresses which may
harbor toxic bacteria, have been cited as possible culprits. A
campaign to encourage parents to put infants to sleep on their backs has
led to a dramatic fall in cot deaths. Scientists from Kaiser Permanente
and the National Institutes of Health questioned the mothers or carers
of 185 infants who died of SIDS and 312 other infants of a similar age
and race. The American Academy of Paediatrics, which issued revised
guidelines in October, recommends that babies are put to sleep on
their back onlyand said pacifiers could be used to help prevent SIDS.
Updated: 7:05 p.m. ET Dec. 8, 2005
Drug Awareness..Drug Caused
Coreg/Carvedilol. Lexicomp Drug listed dental health effects on dental
treatment has this statement: Key adverse event(s): related to
dental treatment: Postural hypotension and periodontitis.
Oral sex linked to mouth
cancer: Swedish study
Certain cases of mouth cancer appear to be caused by a
virus that can be contracted during oral sex.
People who contract a high-risk variety of the human papilloma virus,
HPV, during oral sex are more likely to fall ill with mouth
cancer, according to a study conducted at the Malmo University
Faculty of Odontology in southern Sweden.
"You should avoid having oral sex," dentist and researcher
Kerstin Rosenquist, who headed the study, told Swedish news agency TT.
HPV is a wart virus that causes many cervical cancers, including
endometrial cancer (in the uterus).Comparing 132 patients with mouth
cancer with a control group of 320 healthy people, Rosenquist found that
36 percent of the cancer patients were carriers of HPV while only one
percent of the control group had the virus.
The main factors that contribute to mouth cancer, most commonly
contracted by middle aged and older men, are smoking and drinking
alcohol. "But in recent years the illness has been on the rise among
young individuals and we don't know why. But one could speculate that
this virus (HPV) is one of the factors," Rosenquist said.
Her findings confirm other international studies in recent years. 11/18/05
The Effect of Menopause,
Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT), Alendronate (ALN), and
Calcium Supplements on Saliva.
Purpose: In menopausal women many physiological changes take
place, most of which are due to decreased estrogen production. It
is known estrogen influences oral health in a number of ways and
saliva undergoesvariations depending upon the levels of this hormone.
The most significant oral discomfort in women in the menopausal
period was oral dryness, and this symptom was relieved after HRT with
ALN and calcium supplements. The oral status of the
non-menopausal women was better than the women in menopause.
The salivary flow rate was decreased in the menopausal period
and increased after HRT, ALN, and calcium supplementation. The
saliva pHvalues were not affected by menopause and HRT with ALN and
calcium supplementation. The level of Na+ was increased with
menopause and did not change with HRT supplemented with ALN
and calcium, whereas the K+ level decreased in the menopausal period
and remained constant after HRT with ALN and calcium. The
Cl¯level was not affected by menopause and the HRT supplemented with
ALN and calcium. The Ca++ level was not different in the two
groups of women and did not change after HRT supplemented with
ALN and calcium.
Citation: Yalcin F, Gurgan S, Gurgan
T. The Effect of Menopause, Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT),
Alendronate (ALN), and Calcium Supplements on Saliva. J Contemp
Dent Pract 2005 May;(6)2:010-017.
under stress have deeper pockets than non-anxious smokers Bacterial
biofilm triggers periodontal infection, and stress can aggravate the
situation. Past studies have demonstrated that people with psychiatric
disorders have more periodontal disease. High stress levels
with smoking may lead to more periodontal infection. High-stress levels combined with smoking may lead to more periodontal
Anxiety, Gingival Inflammation and
Periodontal Disease Johannsen, A., Asberg, M., Söder, P., Söder, B.:
Anxiety, Gingival Inflammation and Periodontal Disease
in Non-Smokers and Smokers - An Epidemiological Study. J Clin Perio 32:
488-491, 2005. Cited Dental Hygienetown, PerioReports
Grapefruit Cure For
Eating grapefruit could help fight gum disease. That's the
conclusion of research published in the new edition of the British
Journal (BDJ). Researchers found that eating two grapefruits a day
significantly increased the vitamin C levels of those suffering from
gum disease. Because vitamin C promotes the healing of wounds and
boasts antioxidant properties, it contributes to the therapy and
prevention of the condition. The effect was observed for smokers and
The two-week study examined the effect of consuming grapefruit on a
mixed group of smoking and non-smoking subjects. At the start of the
study, virtually all of those taking part exhibited plasma vitamin C
levels well below the normal range, with the smokers' levels 29 per cent
lower than the non-smokers'. A proportion of the group was then selected
to consume two grapefruits per day after a main meal for the duration of
Grapefruit raised the ascorbic acid plasma levels of all those who had
consumed it. In non-smokers the mean level increased from 0.56
milligrammes (mg dl¹) to 0.87 mg dl¹. In smokers the mean level almost
doubled, from 0.39 mg dl¹ to 0.74 mg dl¹. While smokers'
levels enjoyed a greater increase, the fact that they started from a
lower baseline meant that their levels were still below those of the
non-smokers. The levels of the remainder of the group, who did not
consume any grapefruit, were unchanged.
The researchers also observed a significant reduction of the sulcus
bleeding index, that is bleeding from the gums, after
grapefruitconsumption. They concluded that this effect was also likely
to have been caused by the improved vitamin C supply.
The research was carried out by the Friedrich
Schiller University inGermany.
Use of NSAID May Slow Healing in Fractures
In the Journal of the American
Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, two researchers from the University of
North Carolina School of Medicine (UNC)reviewed several studies that
examined the use of NSAIDs as analgesics for patients recovering from
One of the studies - as reported in the Journal of Bone Joint Surgery
(2000) - compared the recovery of nearly 100 patients who had fractured
a femur (the long bone that runs from the hip to the knee). The
fractures of 32 subjects healed improperly and were classified as
"nonunion," while fractures repaired correctly in a control group of 67
The researchers found a significant association between the use of
NSAIDs and the nonunion of fractures. More than 60 percent of the
nonunion groupreported regular NSAID use compared to only 13 percent in
the control group. Among the subjects who used NSAIDs, the average
healing time was a full two months longer than among those who used no
NSAIDs at all.
Based on this and other similar studies, the UNC researchers concluded
that during the healing of fractures, NSAIDs should be avoided. They
also noted that COX-2 inhibitors not only have an adverse effect on bone
healing, but may also impair the healing of ligaments. IDF 10.05
Teeth In An Hour
Swedish dental implant maker Nobel Biocare has
received FDA approval for Teeth-in-an-Hour, a quick, minimally
invasive procedure for replacing several to all of a patient's teeth.
Dentists take a computerized tomography scan of a patient's mouth and
analyze the jawbone using software developed by Nobel. Nobel's Swiss
factory uses these plans to make a stencil-like mouthpiece, predrilled
with tiny holes to guide the dentist through the implant surgery - that
takes about an hour. Currently there are 75 dentists in the US
performing Teeth-in-an-Hour. Nobel estimates it will train 400 more
this year at dental conferences and universities. One consideration: a
whole mouth can cost as much as $60,000. To view a live
Source: Forbes Magazine, 9/05
Gums Need Extra Care After Menopause
Women with gum disease are at an increased risk for
tooth loss following menopause according to a study in the Journal of
Periodontology. Researchers at the University of Buffalo found
that each millimeter of clinical attachment loss was associated with 2.5
fold increase in tooth loss risk within a decade; each millimeter of
alveolar bone loss increased risk three-fold.
AGD Impact October 2005 pg 10
Less Likely to Visit Dentist Than Nonsmokers
Smokers are significantly less
likely to seek dental care than nonsmokers,
according to data from a nationally representative
sample of 15,250 American adults. The finding holds true
regardless of age, gender, race, ethnicity,
socioeconomic status, location and insurance coverage.
Because smokers face increased risk of gum disease,
tooth loss and oral cancers, “they’re the very
population that should be seeking more dental care,”
says Susan K. Drilea, lead author of the study, which
was sponsored by the National Institutes of Health and
the Centers for Disease Control.
The study, reported in the latest American Journal of
Health Behavior, analyzed data gathered during a
government health care survey in 2000. “We found that
33 percent of current smokers reported having at least
one dental visit that year compared to 45 percent of
nonsmokers,” says Drilea.
The finding highlights an “opportunity for
intervention,” according to the report. “Efforts to
decrease the rates of serious oral diseases may be
enhanced by targeting educational campaigns to smokers,
emphasizing the need for regular dental visits.”
Dental professionals could play a key role in delivering
these messages, says the report. Many practices have
already adopted the “Ask, Advise, Refer” approach
recommended by the American Dental Hygienists’
Association to help their patients quit smoking.
Drilea says support from other health advocates could
augment the efforts of dental professionals. “Tobacco
awareness campaigns are beginning to incorporate more
recognition that oral health is affected by the use of
tobacco. Lung cancer has traditionally been the focus of
attention, but increasingly they are acknowledging that
every system in the body is affected.”
Further research might improve such educational efforts
by asking smokers why they don’t visit the dentist more
often. “Determining whether this is a matter of personal
choice, a lack of awareness, a financial issue, or
whether there are obstacles as part of the dental visit
itself” could be helpful, says Drilea.
Dan Peterson, a Nebraska
dentist who places special emphasis on working with
patients who smoke, offers insight into what such
research might find. Smokers, he says, fear that their
dentist will “condemn them for smoking and try to get
them to quit, when most of my patients don’t want to
Peterson offers this advice to colleagues interested
in promoting oral health among patients who smoke:
“Don’t judge them, come across as caring and concerned.
Be direct with the effects of smoking to their oral
health and provide them with options of care. For our
patients who insist on smoking, we provide a special
program of more regular dental care. We educate,
educate, educate and care.”
By Laura Kennedy, Contributing Writer
Health Behavior News Service
Contact Susan Drilea at [email protected]
American Journal of Health Behavior: Visit www.ajhb.org
or e-mail [email protected]
Drilea SK, et al. Dental visits among smoking and
nonsmoking U.S. adults in 2000. American Journal of
Health Behavior 29(5), 2005
Periodontal disease develops much earlier
than dentists and other health professionals thought
disease -- a progressive, eventually painful and
disruptive condition in which bacteria attack gums and
the hidden roots of teeth -- develops much earlier than
dentists and other health professionals thought, a major
new study concludes.
Clinicians found a significant
proportion of young adult patients examined had
well-established periodontal disease despite no signs or
symptoms. Affected pregnant women faced more than
twice the risk of preterm birth and other pregnancy
complications as unaffected women, the research also
Data from the unique set of clinical
studies, conducted at the universities of
North Carolina at Chapel Hill and
Kentucky were released Tuesday (Sept. 20) at a news
conference during the annual meeting of the
American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons
"Part of the reason was that research
at UNC and elsewhere showed that the inflammation in the
mouth that periodontal infections cause promoted
inflammation in other parts of the body, which
contributed in significant ways to coronary artery
disease, stroke, kidney disease and obstetric
complications," White said.
"That a quarter of patients in their
20s had periodontal problems with no symptoms was a
surprise to us since most people assumed that you don't
get periodontal problems until you are 35 or 40," White
In the evaluation of data from 1,020
higher-risk obstetrics patients enrolled in a National
Institutes of Health-sponsored clinical trial, 18
percent delivered preterm, he said. Wisdom teeth were
a major contributor to the young women's periodontal
disease, and the severity of their disease clearly
corresponded with the risk of preterm delivery. It
also corresponded with indicators of systemic
inflammation, such as elevated C-reactive protein, a
substance produced by the liver in response to
inflammation anywhere in the body.
Women with the worst periodontal
disease around their 3rd molars had more than twice the
risk of preterm birth, researchers found. The danger
to pregnant women was comparable to the risks of smoking
during pregnancy, the surgeon added. Since untreated
periodontal disease in effect "seeds" the bloodstream
with disease-causing bacteria, it's important that
dentists, obstetricians and other physicians assess
wisdom teeth when examining young adults, he said.
"Although most people eventually will
develop pathology with wisdom teeth, periodontal
disease, pericoronitis or tooth decay, it is too early
to recommend strongly that everyone has their wisdom
teeth removed," White said. "It is a good idea to have
your 3rd molars evaluated before age 25. But since a
quarter of people will never have problems with them, a
lot depends on how risk-averse one is as to whether
their third molars with no detected pathology should be
extracted as a precaution."
Snap-on Smiles in National Media
Snap-on Smiles, recently featured in USA Today, Life
Magazine, and IN STYLE magazine, are removable custom molds that slide
onto teeth. "Think of the snap-on smile as the white-enameled cousin to
the press-on nail," writes Olivia Barker of USA Today. Best of all,
patients can emulate A-lister's smiles matching the look of Julia
Roberts, Halle Berry, and more. The resin appliance, which fits snugly
over existing teeth, reportedly costs between $1,000 and $3,000. The
product's inventor is Marc Liechtung, a Manhattan dentist, who features
Snap-on Smiles on his website for New York Center for Cosmetic
Toothpaste goes gourmet with funky
Bitter chocolate, black licorice, pumpkin, caramel, and
curry are spicing up the toothpaste market. Breath Palette (TM) offers
32 flavors. Essential fragrances are used to augment the taste of the
pastes. Neiman Marcus will offer a holiday set for Christmas, with a
$200 price tag. The Sweet Tooth Kit costs around $22, and includes
vanilla, bitter chocolate, caramel, espresso, and pumpkin pudding
toothpastes. These toothpastes are a big hit in Japan where women use
the toothpaste as a diet dessert. They don't actually eat it, but feel
they've had a treat after brushing with a sinfully rich caramel or
pneumonia associated with contaminated alcohol-free mouthwash
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has been notified
by several states of clusters of pneumonia and other infections caused
by Burkholderia cepacia. These cases had exposure to alcohol-free
mouthwash manufactured by Carrington Labs (Irving, TX) for Medline
Industries (Mundelein, IL). Cultures performed by a hospital
laboratory where the first cases were detected indicate that multiple
lots of Medline alcohol-free mouthwash are intrinsically contaminated
with B. cepacia.
The FDA has posted a voluntary recall of the product involved.
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Invisalign Express was specifically designed to
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Ask us about Invisalign Express.
Exposure to cigarette smoke
raises the risk among teens of metabolic syndrome, a disorder associated
with excess belly fat that increases the chances of heart disease,
stroke and diabetes, according to a study.
Researchers said it is the first study to establish such a link in
For the study, metabolic syndrome was defined as having at least three
of five characteristics: a big waist, high blood pressure, high levels
of blood fats called triglycerides, low levels of good cholesterol, and
evidence of insulin resistance, in which the body
cannot efficiently use insulin.
In the study, published Monday in the American Heart Association online
journal Circulation, researchers found that 6 percent of 12-to
19-year-olds had metabolic syndrome and that the prevalence increased
with exposure to tobacco smoke.
The study found that 1 percent of those unexposed to smoke developed the
syndrome, 5 percent of those exposed to secondhand smoke had the
disorder and 9 percent of active smokers had it.
Looking at teens who were overweight or at risk for being overweight,
the effect of smoke was even more marked, with 6 percent of those not
exposed to smoke developing syndrome, 20 percent of those exposed to
secondhand smoke getting it and 24 percent of smokers suffering from the
“What this shows is that the percentages of kids who are at risk is
vastly higher if they’re overweight and they’re exposed to secondhand
smoke, down to very low levels,” Weitzman said.
Weitzman said it is not clear what it is about
smoking that appears to make teenagers more susceptible to metabolic
However, in adults smoking has been linked to insulin resistance, a risk
factor for metabolic syndrome. Doctors also point out that smoking
can lower levels of good cholesterol and raise blood pressure, two more
markers for the disorder.
The researchers looked at 2,273 adolescents, using information from a
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention survey. The youngsters
reported their own use of tobacco. Also, the study looked at
measurements of cotinine, a product of nicotine after it enters the
body. Two-thirds of teens who did not smoke had cotinine levels that
indicated secondhand smoke exposure.
“It’s sobering,” said Dr. Michael Lim, assistant professor of internal
medicine in the division of cardiology at Saint Louis University School
of Medicine. “What it points out is a very high- risk group of people
— young adults 12 to 19 — who are exposed to tobacco products and
The number of overweight teens
in the United States has tripled in the past two decades.
Dr. Michael Weitzman, executive
director of the American Academy of Pediatrics Center for Child Health
Research in Rochester, N.Y
August 6 is National
Fresh Breath Day.
Here are the recommendations for solving the problem:
* Clean your tongue as part of oral health regimen.
* Chew gum to stimulate salivation, especially one sweetened with
* Choose cinnamon flavored gum to help decrease oral bacteria.
* Avoid "ketone breath" from eating low-carb diets by adding a few
* Remove food from between teeth and under gums with floss and water
* Don't panic: a number of people who think they have halitosis do not.
General's website now includes a new "Clinician's Packet on Treating
Tobacco Use and Dependence," a how-to kit on implementing Public Health
Service clinical practice guidelines on tobacco cessation. The kit
includes expanded definitions of the "Five A's" health professionals
should keep in mind when confronted with a patient's tobacco use:
1. ASK. Identify and document tobacco use status for every patient at
2. ADVISE. In a clear, strong, and personalized manner, urge each
tobacco user to quit.
3. ASSESS. Does the tobacco user appear willing to make an attempt to
quit at this time?
4. ASSIST. For patients willing to make the attempt to quit, use
counseling and pharmacotherapy to help them succeed.
5. ARRANGE. Schedule follow-up contact, in person or by telephone,
preferably within the first week after the quit date.
New Mucositis Drug for
Cancer patients may find relief from painful sores in the mouth or
throat due to chemotherapy or radiation treatments from a new drug
recently approved by the US Food and Drug Administration. Palifermin
(brand name Kepivance) is an intravenous drug that is designed to help
prevent or shorten the duration of mucositis in cancer patients. A study
of palifermin showed that 98% of patients who didn't take the drug
developed mucositis and the condition lasted for an
average of nine days, while only 63% of patients taking the drug
developed mucositis and the conditions lasted for an average of three
Dry Mouth News Updates
Acupuncture in the treatment of
Seven xerostomia patients who were treated using
acupuncture and the subsequent results of that treatment are discussed.
Actual outcomes exceeded the author's expectations with all patients
reporting an increase in salivary flow and the ability to eat and
speakand improved sleep. Members of the dental team should consider
referral for acupuncture as a viable adjunct when treating xerostomia.
Acupuncture in the treatment of xerostomia: Clinical reportWarren M.
Morganstein, DDS, MPH
Boxing and Oral Health —
Perhaps not Mutually Exclusive?
News Releases CDA June 13, 2005 Your dentist will certainly never
recommend it, but according to a study published in the latest edition
of the Journal of the Canadian Dental Association (JCDA), participation
in sports — even contact sports including boxing and wrestling — may
have protective health effects.
The article, entitled "Tobacco Use among Young North American Aboriginal
Athletes", found that youths at high-risk for smoking, are less
likely to use tobacco when they are involved in organized sports.
Among Aboriginal youth, average reported
smoking rates vary from 30-
77%, (higher than the non-Aboriginal Canadian youth average of 21.7%),
putting them at increased risk for negative health effects — including
oral diseases. Through a mouthguard clinic established at the July 2002
North American Indigenous Games, a group of dental
researchers was able to learn that participation in sports impacts other
We found that athletes presenting at the clinic were much less likely to
use tobacco products than their peers — and even averaged below the
rates of non-aboriginal youths who are less at risk. These
findings suggest that participation in organized sportsmay be an
important protective factor against tobacco use.
Of 156 Aboriginal athletes participating in the study, only 22 (14.1%)
reported current smoking. And of the few who did smoke, consumption
levels were low and most were interested in quitting.
The full text of the above mentioned article is available from the eJCDA
Tobacco Use among Young North American Aboriginal Athletes[
Can brushing help you lose
If you are trying to maintain a healthy weight
you may want to try brushing. A study published in the Journal of the
Japan Society for the Study of Obesity found that people who brush
their teeth after every meal tend to remain slimmer than those who don't
brush as often. Japanese researchers discovered this effect when they
compared the lifestyle habits of nearly 14,000 people whose average age
was the mid-forties. They concluded that tooth brushing is a good health
habit that could play a role in preventing obesity. I have long
suggested brushing your teeth at least twice a day, accompanied by daily
flossing, to help prevent the buildup of small amounts of food that
attract and nourish bacteria. So if gingivitis, cavities, or bad breath
weren't enough of a reason to brush and floss, consider becoming a
New Tooth Tattoos
Robert "Box" Hildman, a certified dental technician and
owner of Crowns by Box in Waterloo, IA, has created a new way to tattoo
teeth. He paints small pieces of artwork on back molars using a dental
scaler and small paintbrushes with one or two bristles. One junior high
student had a basketball painted on her tooth. Contact:
FDA MedWatch Zometa and Aredia(R) associated with
Novartis and FDA have notified dental health care professionals of
revisions to the prescribing information to
describe the occurrence of osteonecrosis of the jaw (ONJ) observed in
cancer patients received treatment with
intravenous bisphosphonates, Aredia (pamidronate disodium) and Zometa (zoledronic
acid). The prescribing information recommends that cancer patients
receive a dental examination prior to initiating therapy with
intravenous bisphosphonates (Aredia and Zomega), and to avoid invasive
dental procedures while receiving bisphosphonate treatment. For patients
who develop ONJ while on bisphosphonate therapy, dental surgery may
exacerbate the condition.
Cancer patients receiving intravenous
bisphosphonate drugs should not be treated with invasive dental
procedures. Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corp. stated that osteonecrosis
of the jaw (ONJ) has been observed in cancer patients who are receiving
Aredia or Zometa-bisphosphonates used to treat complications of advanced
cancer known as "hypercalcemia of malignancy," bone metastases from
solid tumors and other conditions
ADA Updates 6/05
Possible Alzheimer's signpost Gum inflammation may be linked to
increased risk of the brain
disorder. By Kevin W. McCullough, Times Staff Writer
Missing teeth and gum disease at an early age may be linked to an
increased risk of Alzheimer's disease, researchers have found,
bolstering the increasingly strong connection between early exposure to
chronic inflammation and the degenerative brain disorder.
The study, among the findings presented last week at the first
Alzheimer's Assn. International Conference on Prevention of Dementia,
examined lifestyle factors of more than 100 pairs of identical twins.
All of the pairs included one twin who had developed dementia and one
who hadn't. Because identical twins are genetically indistinguishable,
the study involved only risk factors that could be modified to
helpprotect against dementia.
Twins who had severe periodontal disease before they were 35 years old
had a fivefold increase in risk of developing Alzheimer's disease, the
researchers found. Periodontal disease may be a marker for chronic
disease that provokes an inflammatory response. Chronic inflammation can
damage tissue, including the brain, which may contribute to the
development of the disease.
I would think of the periodontal disease as a signpost, not a cause.
Periodontal disease is also linked to general health,
and even the inflammatory link to Alzheimer's may involve several
factors. This finding reinforces a long-standing appreciation . that
indicated inflammation in the brain was an essential part of the disease
Raisins may fight cavities and gum disease - study
Wed Jun 8, 2005
(Reuters) - They may be sweet and sticky but
raisins contain compounds that suppress bacteria responsible
for cavities and gum disease, U.S. researchers said on
While the researchers have not shown that
people who eat raisins have healthier mouths, they identified
five compounds known as phytochemicals in raisins that
can be beneficial for teeth and gums.
Raisins are perceived as sweet and sticky and
any food that contains sugar and is sticky is assumed to cause
But our study suggests the contrary.
Phytochemicals in raisins may benefit oral health by fighting
bacteria that cause cavities and gum disease.
Foods that are sticky do not necessarily cause
tooth decay; it is mainly the added sugar (sucrose) that
contributes to the problem."
Wu's team found five compounds in Thompson
seedless raisins that might help make teeth and gums healthier
-- oleanolic acid, oleanolic aldehyde, betulin, betulinic acid
All are phytochemicals -- antioxidants found
in plants, Wu told a meeting of the American Society for
Microbiology in Atlanta.
Oleanolic acid slowed growth of a bacteria
that causes cavities and another that causes periodontal
disease. The acid also stopped bacteria from sticking to
surfaces, which prevents them from forming plaque.
Is the Chair Position
Dental anxiety in the general population is more
prevalent in females than in males. The presence of dental
anxiety was studied in a group of 189 females and 176 males using the
following scales: the Dental
Anxiety Scale, the Self- Rating Depression Scale and the Quality
of Life Index . The results obtained showed significant
differences only in relation to dental anxiety regarding the use of
instruments (such as needles and handpieces) and the tilted-back
position of the chair No significant gender differences emerged
between the two groups in relation to dental anxiety regarding
dentist-patient relations , depression , and the quality of life
. The results may explain why women avoid dental care and
indicate new designs to make the chair position more comfortable would
Read complete article at
Citation: Settineri S, Tatì F, Fanara G. Gender
Dental Anxiety: Is the Chair Position Important? J Contemp Dent
Pract 2005 February;(6)1:115-122.
New Prescription For
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved a new
prescription treatment for gingivitis, reports PharmacyOneSource. The
Decapinol Oral Rinse treats gingivitis by reducing the number of
bacteria that attach to tooth surfaces and cause dental plaque.
Decapinol is approved for use in patients 12 years of age or older when
routine oral hygiene is not adequate to prevent gingivitis. Decapinol is
not recommended for use by pregnant women.
This new dental rinse helps treat gingivitis when tooth brushing and
flossing are not enough,' said Dr. Daniel Schultz, Director of FDA's
Center for Devices and Radiological Health. `This product can lead to a
substantial reduction in gingivitis.'
Clinical studies were conducted in adults with mild to severe
gingivitis. In these studies, Decapinol was compared either to `no
treatment' or to an antimicrobial rinse. The studies showed that
Decapinol decreases gingivitis up to 60 per cent - compared to no
treatment and when used as instructed with recommended brushing and
Decapinol Oral Rinse is being regulated as a medical device and not
as a drug because its primary mode of action is to create a physical
barrier, rather than to act chemically.
Decapinol contains a substance called a surfactant that acts as a
physical barrier, making it harder for bacteria to stick to tooth
surfaces. FDA has also approved a number of other anti-gingivitis oral
rinses, but since these products act chemically to kill bacteria that
live in the mouth, they are regulated as antimicrobial drugs rather than
cited smile-on.com 26April'05
Using Skin Cells to Treat
A simple treatment involving skin cell injections could
be used to treat periodontal disease, reports the Society for Chemistry
& Industry. The treatment uses fibroblast cells extracted from the
skin's dermal layer. Fibroblasts control collagen and elastin levels,
proteins that are found in skin, bones, and other connective tissue.
Researchers extracted fibroblast cells from the skin's dermal layer,
multiplied these cells in-vitro, and then injected them into the site to
be treated. In phase I and II clinical trials, the method
consistently succeeded in regenerating gum tissue. Anecdotal evidence
suggests that bone is also being regenerated, and a phase III trial is
planned to start soon in London.
Source: Adapted from a Society for Chemistry & Industry press release,
May 2, 2005, available from
Treatment of periodontal
disease improves metabolic control of diabetes
Diabetes is a complex disease with both vascular and metabolic
components. A back and forth connection exists between diabetic control
and oral infections. When periodontal infection is established,
metabolic control of diabetes is worsened. When diabetesis
exacerbated, periodontal infection progresses. During the 3-month study,
subjects in the control group received no periodontal treatment. Test
group subjects received oral hygiene
instructions and scaling and root planing with local anesthesia.
Baseline, post-treatment and three-month data included clinical
indices and blood tests. Only a few in the test and
control groups had moderately deep pockets. The others had gingivitis.
Following treatment statistically significant differences were observed
between the groups. The differences were not large, but did show
improved glycemic control following non-surgical therapy.
Clinical Implications: Oral hygiene instructions and non-surgical
treatment of periodontal disease in type 2 diabetics can result in
better metabolic control of the diabetes.
Kiram, M., Arpak, N., Ünsal, E., Erdogan, M.: The Effect of Improved
Periodontal Health on Metabolic Control Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus. J
Clin Perio 32: 266-272, 2005. Cited: Perio Reports 2005 April
Huntridge Teen Clinic, which
provides free or low-cost health care,
Teenagers who have never had dental care are a regular phenomenon for
Las Vegas They are teens who don't have health insurance.
pain finally brings them to Lincicome's dental chair, many of them
need extractions or root canals.
Lincicome is the lead dental professional at the nonprofit Huntridge
Teen Clinic, which has been providing free or low-cost health care to
adolescents for almost 12 years. The clinic, 2100 S. Maryland Parkway,
was recently "adopted" by the Leadership Las Vegas class of 2005
for a major renovation and expansion. The project will double the
clinic's dental program from two to four patient chairs.
Steve Williams, clinic director, estimates the value of the work at
$75,000. Leadership Las Vegas is an annual program of the Las Vegas
Chamber of Commerce, intended to mentor potential community leaders. It
is a tradition for each Leadership Las Vegas class to take on a
community project. This class has recruited people to donate labor,
supplies or funds to pay for the expansion. Now, the clinic is open 8:30
a.m. to 5 p.m. on Mondays through Fridays, offering medical and
dental services. Patients must be between 12 and 18 years old at
their first visit.
Back in 1993, Courtney was director of clinics and nursing at the
Clark County Health District. She suggested providing medical
services to needy adolescents, when a committee at Christ Church
Episcopal, 2100 S. Maryland Parkway, came looking for a
social-service cause. The church founded the Huntridge Teen Clinic. It
is now the clinic's landlord. The charge is $10 per visit.
For fillings, root canals and extractions, she routes her teen
patients to the current 35 dentists and oral surgeons who volunteer
for the program. Some donate their hours at the Huntridge Teen
Clinic, others have Huntridge patients come to their private offices.
In the first half of this fiscal year, the dental clinic saw 234
patients. The count is lower than for medical patients because most
dental procedures are more complex and time-consuming than the typical
teen's medical needs. We're running 20 percent ahead of last year,"
Periodontitis and Renal
Periodontitis, a chronic bacterial infection of the
oral cavity, is a novel risk factor for atherosclerotic cardiovascular
disease (CVD). Given the numerous shared risk factors for CVD and
chronic kidney disease (CKD), we hypothesized that periodontitis also is
associated with renal insufficiency in the Dental Atherosclerosis
Risk in Communities study.
Methods: We conducted a cross-sectional study of 5,537 middle-aged black
and white men and women. Periodontitis was determined by using an
independent clinically derived definition and categorized as
initial, and severe. Renal insufficiency is defined as glomerular
filtration rate (GFR) less than 60 mL/min/1.73 m2. Results: A
total of 2,276 individuals had initial periodontitis, and 947
individuals had severe periodontal disease. One hundred ten individuals
(2%) had a GFR less than 60 mL/min/1.73 m2. Compared with
healthy/gingivitis, initial and
severe periodontal disease were associated with a GFR less than 60
mL/min/1.73 m2 (odds ratio, 2.00; 95% confidence interval, 1.23 to 3.24)
forinitial periodontal disease and an odds ratio of 2.14 for severe
(95% confidence interval, 1.19 to 3.85) after adjustment for important
risk factors for CVD and CKD. S
Conclusion: This is the first study to show an association of
periodontal disease with prevalent renal insufficiency. A
prospective study is necessary to determine the exact nature of the
April 2005 • Volume 45 • Number 4 Pathogenesis
and Treatment of Kidney Disease and Hypertension Periodontal disease is
associated with renal insufficiency in the Atherosclerosis Risk In
Communities (ARIC) study Abhijit V. Kshirsagar, MD, MPH Kevin L. Moss
John R. Elter, DMD, PhD James D. Beck, PhD Steve Offenbacher, DDS, PhD
Ronald J. Falk, MD
* Division of Nephrology and Hypertension, School of
Medicine, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC*
Division of Dental Ecology, School of Dentistry, University of North
Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC, USA * The Atherosclerosis Risk
in Communities study is carried out as a collaborative study supported
by National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
contracts no. N01-HC-55015, N01-HC-55016, N01-HC-55018, N01-HC-55019,
N01-HC-55020, N01-HC-55021, and N01-HC-55022. In addition, this study is
supported by National Institute for Dental and Craniofacial Research
grant no. DE13019 and by the General Clinical Research Center grant no.
RR00046. Dr. Kshirsagar’s efforts were supported by a grant from Renal
Research Institute. * ⁎Address reprint requests to Abhijit V. Kshirsagar,
MD, MPH, Division of Nephrology and Hypertension, CB 7155 348 MacNider
Hill, NC 27599-7155. * Email address:
[email protected] (Abhijit V. Kshirsagar)
April is Free Toothbrush Exchange at
Dr. Peterson's Office.
know that you should replace your toothbrush every three months because
the bristles just simply worn out, they lose their effectiveness, they
become breeding grounds for germs, fungus and bacteria and can damage
gum tissue. Any child from age 12 and under can bring in their worn
toothbrush to our office and Dr. Dan Peterson will replace it for free
with one brand new toothbrush and free tube of toothpaste.
in Moms Don't Lead to Small Babies
Risk of low birth weight infants
debunked in new study
good news for expectant moms with cavities, a
new study suggests pregnant women aren't
threatening their newborn's birth weight by
getting mercury-based silver amalgam fillings.
This latest research revealed no
connection between use of the fillings and low
birth weight.You cannot prove absolute safety,
but mercury seems to have quite a bit of data on
it now indicating that it shouldn't be of
The use of silver amalgam
fillings has dipped over the past couple of
decades. They made up 68 percent of all fillings
in the United States in 1990, but dropped to 30
percent in 2003.Resin-based fillings known as
"white" fillings have become more popular, and
some dentists have abandoned silver fillings
because of concerns about the safety of mercury.
While silver amalgam fillings
are commonly known just as "silver," they're
actually made of several metals, including
silver, tin, mercury and copper. The fillings
"are a very good filling material. They're very
long-lasting and have good properties as far as
Concerns about mercury
exposure have grown in recent years, especially
regarding its presence in foods such as fish.
However, the U.S. government has declared that
there is "scant evidence that the health of the
vast majority of people with amalgam (fillings)
In the new study, Hujoel and
his colleagues studied a dental insurance
company's records of 1,117 Washington state
women who gave birth to low-weight infants and
4,468 women who gave birth to infants of normal
The findings appear in the
April 15 issue of the American Journal of
The researchers found no
connection between getting amalgam fillings
during pregnancy -- nearly 5 percent of the
women did so -- and giving birth to a
underweight baby. Even women who had as many as
11 fillings during pregnancy weren't more likely
to give birth to a low-weight child.
The study is another paper in
a growing body of evidence that amalgam is safe
and effective way to repair teeth that have been
damaged by decay or trauma.
Learn more about amalgam fillings from the
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
By Randy Dotinga HealthDay Reporter
SOURCES: Philippe P. Hujoel, Ph.D., D.D.S.,
professor, dental public health sciences,
University of Washington, Seattle; Dr. Rod
Mackert, D.M.D., Ph.D., spokesman, American
Dental Association, and professor, dentistry,
Medical College of Georgia, Augusta; April 15,
2005, American Journal of Epidemiology
Open Wide: Saliva Could Predict Cancer Risk
Researchers Isolate 'Biomarkers' In Bodily Fluids
Breast cancer screening and the early detection of other
tumors could some day become as simple as spitting into a cup, according
to recent studies.
Researchers at the University of California-Los Angeles said they found
in an early study that genetic biomarkers in saliva can predict oral
squamous cell carcinoma -- a type of oral cancer --- in about nine out
of 10 cases. A recent study published in Clinical Cancer Research
found similar predictive powers for head and neck cancers.
The UCLA team collected saliva and blood samples from breast cancer
patients and matched them with samples from patients without breast
Using new techniques, they compared the samples and found that both
serum and saliva had unique genetic profiles.
Researchers said more study is needed on a larger sample of cancer
patients to refine how the fluids can be used to predict cancer risks.
They also said more study is needed to review precancers and other
cancers that are more difficult to detect, such as ovarian and
The biggest hurdle stems from the fact that salivary nucleic acids,
or protein markers, might be influenced by eating, drinking, smoking,
diet or oral hygiene. The goal is to provide the optimized and
standardized protocol to assure consistent results.
Scientists to Study Berries, Oral Cancer
University of Kentucky and Ohio State researchers
are conducting a test to see if a common fruit is useful in
slowing or preventing oral cancer. Scientists believe the
black raspberry carries two acids that can inhibit tumor growth.
The researchers will put the theory to the test this
summer in a trial at Ohio State by using a gel made from
freeze-dried black raspberries.
Obviously we'd like to see these lesions completely disappear,
but I think everyone would be happy just to see the whole
process slowing down. Ninety-nine percent or more of these
lesions will advance to cancer. Oral cancer, which causes up to
8,000 deaths nationally each year, is generally associated with
alcohol and tobacco use.
The idea for a raspberry-based medication was conceived by
doctors at Ohio State's Comprehensive Cancer Center in Columbus.
The raspberry gel was then developed by Mumper, the associate
director at UK's Center for Pharmaceutical Science & Technology.
Natural foods advocates have touted the healthful benefits of
raspberries for years. The trial at Ohio State is apparently is
one of the first efforts by mainstream medicine to develop a
medication from the fruit. The pulp of black raspberries
contains two substances -- anthocyanin and ellagic acid
-- that are thought to have anti-oxidant and
anti-inflammatory properties, as well as the ability to slow
Stoner found that when the powder was fed to test animals, it
appeared to inhibit the development of esophageal and colon
cancer as well as oral cancers.
In the trial, doctors will give the gel to 20 patients who have
precancerous oral lesions and to 10 healthy patients as a
control. The patients will apply the gel four times per day for
Top scientists find no link to
A new study, conducted by
leading scientists from highly regarded research
and academic institutions, finds no link
between amalgam exposure and neurological
function. Our findings do not support the
hypothesis that exposure to amalgam produces
adverse, clinically evident neurological
These effects tested, as part
of the overall neurological evaluation, include
abnormal tremors, coordination, station or gait,
strength, sensation and muscle stretch reflexes.
An oral health examination has
been part of the standard AFHS medical
examination since 1992 because "peripheral
neuropathy" is considered to be an important
adverse neurological effect of high levels of
exposure to elemental mercury. "Peripheral
neuropathy" refers to an abnormality in
sensation, such as vibration sensation at the
ankle, pinprick sensation at the great toe
and/or absence of ankle reflexes.
But as with other
neurological effects, the study found no
connection of amalgam to any level of peripheral
were unable to detect any associations between
amalgam exposure and clinical signs of either
neuropathy or a diminished sensation of the
big toe among adult males — these are standard
measures for diagnosing clinical neuropathy.
This study represents another
important piece to the research puzzle because
of the unique military population tested. The
results should be taken in the context of the
larger group of clinical studies that have not
found direct evidence linking amalgam exposure
to impaired neurological function or peripheral
The bottom line is there
was no association between abnormal neurological
signs and amalgam exposure. So these findings do
not support the hypothesis that amalgam exposure
produces clinically evident neurological
The NIDCR-led research was
conducted because "concerns regarding the safety
of silver-mercury amalgam fillings continue to
be raised in the absence of any direct evidence
of harm," the study reads. "The widespread
population exposure to amalgam mandated that a
thorough investigation be conducted of its
potential effects on the nervous system."
Amalgam is a safe dental
restorative material. This study, like the
recently published report by the independent,
nonprofit Life Science Research Office, which
extensively reviewed the literature and
concluded that amalgam is safe to use in people,
adds to the definitive scientific evidence
attesting to amalgam's demonstrated track
record of safety.
The LSRO report's executive
summary can be downloaded at no cost by visiting
"www.lsro.org", click on "Review of Dental
Amalgams." To obtain the full text, call the
LSRO bookstore at 1-301-634-7030.
By Mark Berthold Rsearch by by
Albert Kingman, Ph.D., Chief, Biostatistics
Core, at the National Institute of Dental and
Craniofacial Research, part of the federal
National Institutes of Health.
Exposure and Neurological Function," appears in
the March issue of NeuroToxicology. It followed
1,663 subjects of the ongoing Air Force Health
Study of Vietnam era veterans.
Month: Sponsored by
the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial
Surgeons, the American Academy of Pediatric
Dentistry, and the American Association of
Orthodontists. This 4th annual event highlights the
importance of avoiding sports injuries by wearing
protective equipment. Many sports injuries can be
prevented by wearing mouth guards, face shields and
National Youth Sports Safety Month:
Be a hero when sports injuries hit the mouth by
distributing the EMT
ToothSaver™ to schools and sports leagues. The
pH-balanced cell culture fluid in the EMT ToothSaver
protects and nourishes a knocked-out tooth for up to
24 hours before replantation.
National Child Abuse Prevention Month:
Dental professionals can watch for signs of
potential child abuse. For more information, call
1-800-394-3366 or visit
April 13 - Kick Butts Day Campaign for
April 11-17 - Oral, Head and Neck Cancer
Awareness Week: routinely screen for
Oral Bacteria May
Predict Pregnancy Outcomes
Researchers from New York University
found that certain bacteria from the
mouth may be related to preterm delivery
and low birthweight according to a study
in the Journal of Periodontology.
Previously it was reported that
periodontal disease may be a factor in
the occurrence of preterm low
birthweight babies. Now it is believed
that bacteria commonly found in dental
plaque biofilms may also be related.
Researchers evaluated bacterial levels
in the saliva of 297 women in their
third trimester of pregnancy. They found
that a high salivary level of the
bacteria called Actinomyces naeslundii
Genospecies2 (A. naeslundii gsp2) is
associated with low birthweight and
preterm delivery, while higher levels of
the bacteria Lactobacillus casei (L.
casei) during pregnancy positively
affected the birthweight. To view an
abstract or learn more visit
Problems Aloe vera: Natural, home remedy
treats canker and cold sores
New reports prove that the aloe vera plant,
which has been used to heal skin for more than 2,000 years, can also
treat many oral health problems including canker sores, cold sores,
herpes simplex viruses, lichen planus and gingivitis. There is good
evidence to support using aloe vera for oral health problems because it
is alsoan inexpensive alternative.
Aloe vera accelerates healing and reduces pain
associated with canker sores, which are blisters on the lips or mouth.
Aloe vera does not have a bad taste or sting when applied. Patients
can drank 2.0 ounces of aloe vera juice daily and apply topical aloe
vera lip balm. The oral lesions may clear up in four weeks and complete
success can be achieved. Thus Aloe vera can be taken both as the aloe
vera juice and aloe vera gel. Those interested
in using aloe vera for oral health problems are encouraged to speak with
a dentist for proper treatment techniques.
and use of aloe vera plants
Aloe vera plants are available at most plant
stores and nurseries.
Place near a window.
Water when the soil is dry.
Do not over water.
To get the gel out of the plant, use scissors
to snip off an inch of the leaf.
Squeeze the leaf that was snipped off. The
gel will squeeze out.
January/February issue of
Richard L. Wynn, PhD, the Academy of General Dentistry's (AGD)
Cranberries May Help Oral
Health cited Dimensions of DH March 2005
In a study funded by the Cranberry Institute found that cranberry
juice may prevent Streptococcus mutans from adhering to the teeth.
According to a Medical News Today report, Koo performed an in vitro
cranberry juice was ingested twice per day. The results showed the
juice reduced bacteria adhesion by 67% to 85%. The National Center
for Complementary and Alternative Medicine is funding
Patients who have been receiving IV
bisphosphonates should avoid having teeth pulled at all costs
Over a three-year period, the jaws of dozens of patients who had
undergone oral surgery at his hospital had failed to heal properly.
Part of the jawbone had died and become exposed."We never saw this
before in the jaw" except in patients who had received radiation therapy
to that part of the face.
Further investigation revealed one common thread: All of the
patients had been treated with at least one of a class of drugs called
bisphosphonates. Most were cancer patients who had received the
intravenous bisphosphonates Zometa or Aredia or both for excessive
calcium in their blood or bone tumors.But about 10% were osteoporosis
patients who had taken an oral bisphosphonate, mainly Fosamax.
Ruggiero co-wrote a report on 63 patients with osteonecrosis - or
bone death - of the jaw in the Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial
Surgery. Six had taken Fosamax, and a seventh had taken Actonel,
another oral bisphosphonate for osteoporosis. The problem doesn't appear
to be as severe with oral bisphosphonates as it is with the IV drugs.
Patients who have been receiving IV bisphosphonates should avoid
having teeth pulled "at all costs," Based on his cases, a Food and
Drug Administration (news
web sites) Web site suggests that osteonecrosis of the jaw (ONJ) is
a risk of all bisphosphonates, not just the IV drugs.
Bisphosphonates remain in bone indefinitely. Ruggiero
speculates that their long-term use could upset the delicate balance
between cells that put calcium in bone and cells that take calcium away.
The FDA (news
web sites) review concluded that all bisphosphonate labels should
Rugierro says he has now seen a total of 12 or 13 cases of ONJ in
patients treated with an oral bisphosphonate. Robert Marx, chairman of
the division of oral and maxillofacial surgery at Florida's University
of Miami, says he's aware of at least 40 or 50 cases of ONJ nationwide
in patients who had taken Fosamax.That's a infinitely small fraction of
the approximately 3 million women in the USA who are taking the drug,
although most experts agree that only 1% to 10% of adverse events linked
to drugs are reported
3/05 USA Today
Expert Panel Recommendation for the
Prevention, Diagnosis and Treatment of
Osteonecrosis of the Jaw.
Vegas casino workers can now take a break to receive a complete dental
hygiene appointment as reported in the Review-Journal. Casino Direct
operates three mobile dental vans outfitted with state of the art
equipment offering complete dental care. The vans travel to casino
parking lots providing dental care to workers. The Casino Direct accepts
most of the area's insurance plans. .
Dimensions of DH February 2005
Forget the Breath Mints, Eat Yogurt
- New study findings
suggest that yogurt may be another weapon in the battle against bad
"Yogurt intake may improve oral hygiene, namely tongue-coating
bacteria and halitosis," study author Dr. Kenichi Hojo of Tsurumi
University in Yokohama, Japan told Reuters Health.
He and his colleagues found that study participants who consumed 90
grams of yogurt twice a day for six weeks tended to have lower levels
of hydrogen sulfide and other volatile sulfide compounds that contribute
to bad breath.
Other studies have found that yogurt plays a role in the prevention and
management of bowel disease and other gastrointestinal conditions.
Furthermore, another study showed that people who eat yogurt regularly
may have a lower risk of cavities.
The participants then consumed sugar-free yogurt fermented with
streptococci and lactobacilli twice daily -- between breakfast and lunch
and between lunch and dinner -- for six weeks. Afterwards, the
investigators analyzed samples collected from the study participants'
saliva and tongue.
They found that most (80 percent) of the study participants identified
as having halitosis had lower levels of volatile sulfide compounds after
eating yogurt every day compared with the earlier two-week period when
they did not eat any yogurt.
These study participants also had significantly
less plaque and gingivitis as a result of their eating yogurt,
These findings suggest that yogurt intake may reduce the components
leading to halitosis and harmful bacteria.
Charnicia E. Huggins (Reuters
Type 2 Diabetes and Gum Disease Increases Risk of
Death by Three Times
A recent study suggest people with type 2 diabetes
should be be certain they are taking excellent car of their teeth and
gums. According to a study published in the journal Diabetes Care
on the effects of periodontal disease on mortality, people with
severe periodontal disease had more than THREE TIMES the risk of dying
of cardiac or renal disease. Johns Hopkins
Medical Letter Vol. 17, Issue 2 pg 1 April 2005
"Bleachorexis" overwhitening their teeth
ABC news reports that more people are using tooth bleaching – from over
the counter products – to dentist prescribed take home kits– to
in-office light activated whitening – to pursue a perfectly white smile.
As with many cosmetic trends, some “whitening junkies” are aiming for
an unnaturally white shade by overusing the products. Excessive use of
bleaching products can damage tooth structure and gums. Some overly
enthusiastic patients experience tooth sensitivity, blisters and
discoloration on teeth and gums. Practice
Smart® Newsletter March 2005
Brushing with Bugs
It sounds like a gross-out stunt from "Fear
Factor." But putting these bugs in your mouth
might just end tooth decay.
In a couple weeks, an innovative approach to
cavity prevention will be tried for the first
time. Volunteers will allow an engineered strain
of Streptococcus mutans to be rubbed onto
their teeth. J.D. Hillman, a bioengineer at
Oregenics Inc., says these bugs use a natural
antibiotic to permanently evict their lactic
acid-producing relatives that normally live in
your mouth. Then they take up residence.
Lactic acid is what eats away at your teeth to
cause decay, and Hillman says his bacterial hit
men don't produce it. It may mean no more
cavities, but you'll still have to brush your
teeth to prevent gum disease and bad breath.
With the National Academy of Engineering, Randy
Atkins, WTOP Radio.
Toothbrush Tiny microchip plays tunes while children brush
A musical toothbrush intended to keep kids brushing for the recommended
two minutes will hit stores in September, transmitting the '60s pop hit
"Do You Believe in Magic?" through their jawbones directly to their
inner ears. Toy maker Hasbro Inc. said Friday the battery-operated Tooth
Tunes contains a tiny microchip that stores the song. Someone standing
nearby would hear only a hum. The song plays for two minutes, the amount
of time dentists recommend
people spend brushing their teeth. Hasbro said the toothbrush will sell
for under $10 Copyright 2005 The Associated Press.
DEVELOPED FOR CHRONIC DRY MOUTH SUFFERERS
Think of it as a pacemaker to moisten your mouth.
Israeli dentists have invented a computerized tooth they say could
alleviate the suffering of millions of people worldwide who have lost
the ability to salivate because of autoimmune diseases and diabetes, or
as a side-effect of cancer treatments.
The Saliwell Crown, an experimental device by dentists at Assuta
Medical Centre in Tel Aviv, is shaped like a regular filling
and screws to fit into a normal dental implant where it releases an
electrical current to stimulate nerves in the mouth into secreting
saliva. It's made of durable plastic stuffed with two miniature
watch batteries, a wetness sensor, four electrodes, a microcomputer that
calculates how much electrical charge to deliver and a diode
communicating with a hand-held remote control unit. As many as 80
million people worldwide suffer chronic dry mouth. Once saliva
production stops, patients find it hard to swallow and taste food and
their speech becomes garbled. Using their remote-controlled
tooth,patients dial the intensity of saliva up or down at will, or they
can pre-program the crown. The high-tech tooth is to be tested on
patients at hospitals in Berlin, Madrid and Naples as part of a clinical
this springand it could become available commercially the following
year. CanWest News Service
A less painful way to repair
Japanese researchers develop synthetic paste for teeth
Researchers in Japan have developed a new synthetic tooth enamel
that can repair early tooth decay without the need for drillings and
The crystalline white paste can reconstruct enamel without removing
the decayed area. It repairs small cavities and helps prevent new
"We have shown that our synthetic material can reconstruct enamel
without prior excavation,” Kazue Yamagishi, of the FAP Dental Institute
in Tokyo, said in a report in the science journal Nature. The scientists
tested the new paste on early decay in a lower premolar tooth. After
examining the tooth with an electron microscope they found the paste
integrated with the tooth’s natural enamel.
But the researchers warned the paste should not come into
contact with the gums because it could cause inflammation due to its
high concentration of hydrogen peroxide.
Creighton Researcher Says Milk is the most reliable
source of calcium
A new study published today in Nutrition Today1 finds
naturally calcium-rich milk is the most reliable source of this
bone-building nutrient, superior to calcium-fortified soy and rice
beverages and many orange juice brands. The study reveals that
much of the calcium settles to the bottom of fortified soy and rice
beverage containers, even after vigorous shaking. Researchers say
that simply adding calcium to beverages does not make them nutritional
substitutes for milk. In addition to calcium, milk provides
protein, phosphorus, vitamins A and D, and many other nutrients.
The calcium that you'll find added to many soy beverages will have
settled to the bottom of the container. Hand shaking wasn't enough;
we found that really vigorous shaking, such as with a hardware store
paint shaker, would have been needed to suspend the calcium in these
beverages so you can put them in the glass and drink them."
This study shows that the nutrition label for milk is accurate for
calcium in that the amount listed on the label is same as what is
actually in a glass of milk. With 85 percent of shoppers looking
at the Nutrition Facts Label when choosing which foods to buy, and
almost eight out of ten Americans not meeting their calcium
In this study, milk scored higher than all four soy or rice beverages,
and eight of 10 orange juice products. Scores comparing calcium
liquid suspension for two of the orange juice products were nearly the
same as milk. Due to the inconsistent quality of
calcium-fortification in soy/ rice beverages and orange juice brands,
the researchers concluded milk is the most reliable calcium source.
Recently, the 2005 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommended 3
servings a day of calcium-rich milk and dairy foods, such as cheese
and yogurt. For more information on the nutritional benefits of dairy
www.nationaldairycouncil.orOmaha, Neb., February 14, 2005
Periodontitis as risk factor
for acute myocardial infarction. A case control study of Spanish adults
A study was conducted of 149 Spanish patients aged
between 40 and 75 years. Males, older patients, smokers, and
those with hypertension, diabetes or hypercholesterolemia, showed an
increased risk of acute myocardial infarction. The association
between periodontitis and acute myocardial infarction was high There
is evidence of an association between periodontitis and acute myocardial
infarction after adjusting for well-known risk factors for acute
Journal of Periodontal Research
Volume 40 Issue 1 Page 36 -February 2005
A. Cueto, F. Mesa, M. Bravo, R. Ocaña-Riola
Impact of modified acidic
soft drinks on enamel erosion
From each of 144 bovine incisors one enamel sample was
prepared. Labial surfaces of the samples were ground flat, polished and
covered with adhesive tape, leaving an exposed area. The samples were
distributed among four groups for treatment with A: Coca-Cola, B:
Sprite; C: Sprite light, D: orange juice. Either 1.0 mmol l1 calcium
(Ca) or a combination (comb.) of 0.5 mmol l1 calcium plus 0.5 mmol l1
phosphate plus 0.031 mmol l1 fluoride was added to
the beverages. Samples of each group were subdivided into three
subgroups (-original; -Ca and -comb.) for treatment with original and
modified drinks. Surface loss of the specimens was determined using
profilometry after test procedure.In all subgroups, loss of enamel
was observed. The enamel loss recorded for the samples rinsed
with original Sprite and original orange juice was significantly higher
compared with all
Modification of the test soft drinks with low
concentrations of calcium or a combination of calcium, phosphate and
fluoride may exert a significant protective potential with respect to
Impact of modified acidic soft drinks on enamel erosion
T Attin, K Weiss, K Becker, W Buchalla, A Wiegand
Dental Erosion Due to Wine Consumption
JADA 2005; 136:71-75.
Dental erosions can result from numerous causes,
dietary factors are the most common. Because of wine'sacidity, it may
have a deleterious effect on teeth.
Wine could be a cause of dental erosion. Early recognition
negates progressive dental damage with its need for extensive dental
restoration. Furthermore, wine-incited dental erosions individuals
consume large volumes of wine with its significant alcohol content,
medical referral for a liver assessment is indicated
JADA 2005; 136:71-75
Use of water 'softening and conditioning systems'
significantly increases the risk of periodontitis:
Results: Subjects that answered the question 'yes' to soft water use
had a significantly higher risk of periodontitis.
Conclusions: Thus, use of water 'softening and conditioning systems'
significantly increased the risk for periodontitis.
Journal of Periodontal ResearchVolume 39 Issue
6 Page 367 - December 2004
Losing Teeth Latest Meth Use
Jeffery Lotshaw flossed regularly. He brushed faithfully,
sometimes four or five times in a day.
All that care makes his condition seem incomprehensible -- at the age of
just 33, Lotshaw's grin is toothless. His teeth all broke apart,
tarnished with yellow and black. "Before I started doing meth, I
didn't have a cavity in my head," .
The growing use of highly addictive methamphetamine throughout the
country is creating a prominent scar on an increasing number of users--
rotting, brittle teeth that seem to crumble from their mouths.
Methamphetamine can be made with a horrid mix of substances, including
over-the-counter cold medicine, fertilizer, battery acid and hydrogen
peroxide. Together, the chemicals reduce a user's saliva, which
acids and physically clears food from the teeth.When the saliva
isn't flowing, the bacteria build up a lot faster,"
Meth users also may neglect their teeth, or moisten their dry mouths
with high-sugar drinks, and anxiety caused by the drug prompts them to
grind their teeth, which speeds decay. They're rotting teeth,
missing teeth, rotting way into the gums,". Lotshaw has been drug-free
for more than five months, but there's nodenying what is to blame for
his empty mouth.
By MATT SEDENSKY Associated
Press Writer Originally published February 5, 2005, 2:03 PM EST
Clean teeth campaigners to
Stockholm - Sweden's state-run pharmacy chain said on Monday it would host
an attempt to break the world record for the longest kiss as part of a
campaign to improve dental hygiene.
US couple Louisa Almedovar and Rich Langley have held the record for the
longest smooch - 30 hours, 59 minutes and 27seconds - since December 5,
The Swedish kissathon will take place on Valentine's Day, February 14,
and will be broadcast live on the website of Apotheket. The selected
couple will undergo rigorous training ahead of D-day, including
following a healthy diet, brushing their teeth under medical
surveillance and learning to use different types of dental floss.
Apoteket points out that a peck on the cheek demands the use of 12
facial muscles while a French kiss sets 34 different facial muscles in
During an open-mouthed kiss, two individuals on
average exchange 40,000 parasites, 250 different types of bacteria,
along withvarying amounts of salt, fat, protein and other organic
Since a kissing couple also burns about four calories per minute, the
Swedish pair should burn at least 7 436 calories if they want to break
the world record.
May Have Too Much Fluoride
Instant tea may be a source of harmful levels of fluoride
that can lead to bone pain, researchers
discovered, after looking into the case of a woman
who drank one to two gallons of super-strength
tea every day.
But it does make the point "all things in
He said the study tested 10 brands of instant tea at
regular-strength levels in fluoride-free water; they
didn't test brewed or bottled tea. Fluoride levels
ranged from 1.0 to 6.5 parts per million. The
maximum level allowed in drinking water by the
Environmental Protection Agencyis 4 ppm.
Fluoride is absorbed naturally into tea plants
from soil and rain water and varies from "year to
year, harvest to harvest. Swallowing high levels
of fluoride boosts bone density, but also makes it
more brittle. It can lead to skeletal fluorosis,
which causes bone pain, calcified ligaments, bone
spurs, fused vertebrae and difficulty in moving
joints. It's a rare condition in the United
It was this rare condition Now she
drinks lemonade. Although her fluoride levels are
back to normal, her bone density remains high but
her pain has eased.
Aside from pointing to the need to drink tea in
Fluoride is added to most major cities' drinking
water to help prevent tooth decay. A British
analysis in 2000 of numerous fluoride studies found
no increased risk of bone fractures among the
elderly from adding fluoride to drinking water.
By CHERYL WITTENAUER
Associated Press Writer
Originally published January 25, 2005, 9:53 PM EST
The American Journal of Medicine:
Washington University School of Medicine:
Tea Association of the United States:
Nail embedded in man's skull for 6
A dentist found
the source of the toothache Patrick Lawler was
complaining about on the roof of his mouth -- a
four-inch (10-centimeter) nail the construction
worker had unknowingly embedded in his skull six
A nail gun backfired on Lawler,
23, on January 6 while working in Breckenridge. The
tool sent a nail into a piece of wood nearby, but
Lawler didn't realize a second nail had shot
through his mouth.
Following the accident, Lawler had
what he thought was a minor toothache and blurry
vision. On Wednesday, after painkillers and ice
didn't ease the pain, he went to a dental office
where his wife, Katerina, works.
He was taken to a suburban Denver
hospital, where he underwent a four-hour surgery.
The nail had plunged 1 1/2 inches (4 centimeters)
into his brain, barely missing his right eye.
This is the second one we've seen
in this hospital where the person was injured by the
nail gun and didn't actually realize the nail had
been imbedded in their skull. But it's a pretty rare
Despite his lack of medical
insurance and hospital
bills between $80,000 and $100,000.
"The doctors said, 'If you're
going to have a nail in the brain, that's the way
you want it to be,"' she said. "He's the luckiest
Monday, January 17, 2005 Posted: 7:48
AM EST (1248 GMT)
CNN Littleton Colorda.AP
New Dietary Guidelines
contain 41 key recommendations, 23 of them for the general
public and 18 for certain populations such as children or
older adults. Here are the main messages:
|To maintain a healthy body weight,
balance calories taken in with calories expended.
|To reduce the risk of chronic disease
in adulthood, engage in a moderate-intensity physical
activity at least 30 minutes a day for most of days of
the week. More vigorous exercise for longer periods of
time is better. |
|To prevent gradual weight gain in
adulthood, engage in about 60 minutes of
moderate-to-vigorous activity on most days of the week
while keeping calories constant. |
|To maintain weight loss in adulthood,
do 60 to 90 minutes of daily moderate-intensity physical
activity while keeping calories constant. |
|Limit intake of saturated and trans
fats, cholesterol, added sugars, salt and alcohol.
|For a 2,000-calorie diet, eat two
cups of fruit and two-and-a-half cups of vegetables each
|Eat three or more ounce-equivalents
of whole-grain products each day, with the rest of the
recommended grains coming from enriched or whole-grain
products. In general, at least half the grains should
come from whole grains. |
|Consume three cups a day of fat-free
or low-fat milk or equivalent milk products.
|Consume less than 10 percent of total
calories from saturated fatty acids and less than 300
milligrams a day of cholesterol. Keep trans fatty acid
consumption as low as possible. |
|Keep total fat intake between 20
percent and 35 percent of calories, with most fats
coming from sources of polyunsaturated and
monounsaturated fatty acids, such as fish, nuts and
vegetable oils. |
|Eat lean, low-fat or fat-free meat,
poultry, dry beans, and milk or milk products.
|Consume less than 2,300 milligrams --
about one teaspoon of salt -- of sodium per day.
|Increase potassium intake with fruits
and vegetables. |
|Limit alcoholic beverages to one
drink a day if you are a woman, up to two drinks a day
for men. Some individuals, including pregnant women,
should not drink alcohol at all.|
The U.S. government has more on the
Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2005.
No Replacement For Floss, Despite Claim By Ads
POSTED: 12:52 pm EST January 7, 2005
UPDATED: 2:26 pm EST January 7, 2005
NEW YORK -- An advertising campaign that says the
mouthwash Listerine is as
effective as floss at fighting tooth and gum decay is false and
and poses a public health risk because it can undermine the message of
dental professionals, a judge has ruled.
U.S. District Judge Denny Chin said in a decision signed Thursday and
public Friday that he will order Pfizer, the maker of Listerine, to
"Dentists and hygienists have been telling their patients for decades to
floss daily," Chin wrote. "They have been doing so for good reason. The
benefits of flossing are real -- they are not a `myth.' Pfizer's
message that Listerine can replace floss is false and misleading."
The judge ruled after McNeil-PPC Inc., a subsidiary of Johnson &
filed a lawsuit saying that false claims in the advertising campaign
began last June posed an unfair threat against its sales of dental
Pfizer in print ads had featured a Listerine bottle balanced equally on
scale opposite a floss container with the words: "Listerine antiseptic
clinically proven to be as effective as floss at reducing plaque and
gingivitis between the teeth."
The campaign also featured a television commercial titled the "Big
it, the commercial announces that Listerine is as effective as floss and
that clinical tests prove it, though it does add that there is no
replacement for flossing.
The judge said "substantial evidence" demonstrates that flossing is
important in reducing tooth decay and gum disease and that it cannot be
replaced by rinsing with a mouthwash.
The judge also noted that the authors of articles on which Pfizer based
advertising campaign had emphasized that dental professionals should
continue to recommend daily flossing and cautioned that they were not
suggesting that mouthrinse be used instead of floss.
ASSESSMENT OF THE ALVEOLAR BONE SURROUNDING THE
TEETH OF INDIVIDUALS WEARING A TONGUE STUD
.It is imperative to be aware of the increasing
occurrence of oral piercing and its health implications such as
infection, fractured teeth, damaged gingival tissue, increased salivary
flow, and negative affects on speech, mastication, swallowing, and
alveolar bone abnormalities surrounding the mandibular anterior teeth
associated with the wearing of a tongue stud.
The findings from this study indicated that individuals
wearing a tongue stud for any length of time are at risk for
development of alveolar bone abnormalities surrounding the
mandibular anterior teeth.
*Susan L. Dougherty, RDH, MS
Weber State University presented ADHA Annual Session 2004 1.06.05
Jesus in an x-ray?
Click here to find out more:
Jesus Appears in a Dental X-ray
Fluoride Release From
The authors conducted a study to evaluate fluoride
released from fluoride varnishes that had been applied with two
different protocols. The authors painted exfoliated primary molar teeth
either in a single application (five samples) or three times within a
single week (five samples) with fluoride varnish(Duraphat).
The samples were immersed in buffered calcium phosphate solution (pH 6)
to simulate the oral environment; the amount of fluoride released was
measured during a span of six months.
The total release of fluoride was significantly higher in the
three-application regimen than in the single application.
Applying fluoride-release varnish three times in a single week produced
greater and longer release of fluoride than did one application.
Fluoride Release From
Varnishes in Two In Vitro Protocols Jorge L.
Castillo, Peter Milgrom JADA 2004; 135:1696-1699.