Harvard Medical School
studied longevity and found one of the
most important contributing factors was daily flossing
Oral health problems associated with
anxiety disorders include canker sores, dry mouth, Lichen
Planus (lacy white lines, red areas or mouth ulcers, burning
mouth syndrome, and temporomandibular joint disorders,.
People with anxiety disorders may disregard
their oral health altogether and are at an increased risk
for dental caries, periodontal disease, and bruxism
(grinding). Anxiety could be caused by being anxious of a
needle and complicate procedures.
Tell your dentist about your anxiety
disorder and what medications you are on.
Some medications decrease the mouth's
ability to produce saliva, which can increase the risk of
developing tooth decay and periodontal disease. Other
medication side effects include dry mouth, vomiting (which
could cause tooth decay and erosion), anemia and bleeding
Academy of General Dentistry,
Chew Your Way to Relief
is the season for large meals and even larger digestive
discomfort, however researchers recently found that chewing
sugarless gum for 30 minutes can be an effective remedy for
those times when mild heartburn strikes.
Anger may be a risk factor
of gum disease!
Stress is associated with
poor oral hygiene, increased glucocorticoid secretion that can
depress immune function, increased insulin resistance and
potentially increased risk of periodontitis. Methods. The
authors examined the association between social support, anger
expression and periodontitis in 42,523 male.
Subjects who reported having at least one close friend had a
30 percent lower risk of developing periodontitis. Men who
participated in religious meetings or services had a 27
percent lower risk of developing periodontitis. Men who
reported being angry on a daily basis had a 43 percent higher
risk of developing periodontitis compared with men who
reported being angry seldom.
Prospective Study of Social Support, Anger Expression and Risk
of Periodontitis in Men Merchant A.T. et al., December 2003
|A Dose of Advice
|If you're thinking about using
an herbal supplement, you may need to check more
than the label to get the best advice on how
much to take.
A recent review of popular
herbal supplements such as ginkgo biloba,
ginseng, Echinacea, and garlic revealed that
dose recommendations varied widely amongst the
different brands. Less than half of the brands
were consistent with benchmark recommendations.
Consult your doctor or pharmacist to find out
the best amount for you.
RealAge Benefit: Taking
unnecessary vitamins and supplements can make
your RealAge as much as 1.7 years older.
Tooth loss and diet change
A recent study was
published in the Journal of the American Dental Association.
Harvard University researchers assessed the relationship
between tooth loss and changes in diet over an 8-year period
among over 30,000 male health professionals. The results
of the study confirm if you can’t chew well, you tend not to
eat certain foods. These dietary changes make it more
difficult for you to keep your body’s health in balance.
There was a different
experience for men who lost five or more teeth. They
were also more likely to stop eating hard-to-chew foods such
as apples, pears, and raw carrots, while maintaining or
increasing their consumption of softer, less nutrient-rich
Clinic commented on this very subject....their medical opinion
that keeping a full mouth of healthy teeth adds 10 years to
your life, compared with losing all your teeth.
“Dentures are not a substitute for teeth. They are a
substitute for no teeth.” Good dentistry should enhance your
health as well as your comfort and appearance.
Births: Know the Facts and Stats
have shown that women with periodontal disease are at three
to five times greater risk of preterm birth than those who are
preterm) babies are born too soon - before 37 completed
weeks of gestation.
|In 2001, the
preterm birth rate was 11.9%, reflecting more than 476,000
newborns and the highest rate ever reported for the U.S.
This represents 1 in 8 babies in the U.S. born
|The rate of preterm
birth increased 27% between 1981 and 2001 from 9.4% to
|On an average day
in the U.S., 1,305 babies are born preterm (before 37
weeks), 213 are born very preterm (before 32 weeks).
periodontal disease are at three to five times greater
risk of preterm birth than those who are periodontally
subgroups, preterm birth rates were highest among infants
born to black mothers (17.5%) in 2001.
|Major risk factors
associated with increasing rates of preterm delivery
include multiple births, advanced maternal age, induced
deliveries and additional factors as yet unknown.
labor/delivery is the number one obstetrical challenge in
prematurity/low birthweight was the leading cause of
neonatal mortality in the U.S., accounting for 23% of
deaths in the first month of life.
|Preterm birth is a
leading challenge in pediatrics, accounting for
substantial long-term disabilities such as mental
retardation, cerebral palsy, vision and hearing problems,
and chronic lung disease.
|Causes of nearly
half of all preterm births are unknown.
|Preterm labor can
happen to any pregnant woman.|
Caries in Primary Teeth
Predict Future Decay
Children with tooth
decay in their primary dentition are nearly three times more
likely to have decay in their permanent teeth, according
to an eight-year study conducted in China. In 362 Chinese
children age 3 to 5 years at the time of the 1992 baseline
study, 85 percent who had had caries in their primary
molars showed at least one decayed permanent tooth in a
follow-up examination in 2000. In contrast, 83 percent of
the children who exhibited no caries in their primary teeth
remained decay-free until at least age 12. The authors of
the study suggest that children with caries in their
primary dentition should be considered high-risk cases for
decay in permanent teeth, increasing the importance of
dental sealants and fluoride treatments for decay
prevention. The recommendation is consistent with a recent
recommendation from the Centers for Disease Control and
The results of the Chinese study were published in the August
2002 issue of the Journal of Dental Research.
Increased preventive practices lead to
greater tooth retention
In the US, the ADA and
the Surgeon General have recommended that individuals brush
twice and floss once daily, and have regular prophylaxis
visits. The desired outcome is to maximize tooth retention,
but there is little research on whether this is achieved. This
study considered data from 736 dentate men (mean age 48 yrs,
range 28-80) examined 3-yearly from 1969. The first 4 cycles
(13 yrs) were examined as predictors of the clinical data over
26 yrs. Initially, participants had a mean of 24 teeth, 72%
had education beyond high school, 20% smoked, 55% brushed once
and 43% twice daily, 38% flossed, 85% had regular prophylaxis
treatment, and 8% had a denture. Consistently good oral
health behavior over the 13 yrs was related to less tooth loss.
Of a mean 24 teeth per subject, 13% were lost over the study
period. A significantly increased relative risk for tooth
loss occurred with smoking (1.92 for a pack per day), and reduced
risk with brushing (0.51), brushing & flossing (0.44), and
brushing, flossing & prophylaxis (0.33).British
Dental Journal (2003); 195, 327. Preventive dentistry-
Increased preventive practices lead to greater tooth retention
Kressin NR, Boehmer U et al. J Dent Res 2003; 82:
Relationship between dental
health and 10-year mortality in a elderly. The aim of the
study was to assess the possible role of dental health as a
predictor of mortality. The results showed that the more
teeth or filled teeth a subject had, the smaller was their
risk for death. The effect of missing teeth was
significant after adjusting for the general health variables.
Results support the hypothesis that poor dental health is
linked to increased mortality among elderly people.
European Journal Of Oral Sciences Volume
111 Issue 4 Page 291 - August 2003
Signs of early oral cancer
While those at greatest risk
for oral cancer are typically over 40 with a history of
smoking and/or alcohol use, we are seeing reports of an
increase in populations traditionally considered at lower risk.
Data show that oral cancer incidence among women has
increased from 15% of all patients with oral cancer to a full
third of oral cancer cases over the last 45 years. The
changing ratio is likely the result of the increase in smoking
among women in the past three decades. Cancer also is an
age-related disease, and in the United States, there are 50%
more women over 64 years of age than men over 64. It also
appears that tongue cancer in males under 40 years of age
may be increasing. Approximately 28,000 new
diagnoses of oral cancer occur each year in the United States.
According to the American Cancer Society, oral cancer
occurs almost as frequently as leukemia and claims almost as
many lives as melanoma cancer. Although tobacco users and
those who consume alcohol are at higher risk for developing
oral cancer, more than 25 percent of oral cancer patients do
not fall into these risk categories. The stage of an oral
cancer diagnosis is critical. When detected at its earliest
stage, oral cancer is more easily treated and cured. When
detected late, its five-year survival rate is about 50
percent. Testing is painless and there is no question that
early detection saves lives." ADA
News Nov 03
Eight Supplements to Avoid
is toxic to kidneys.
"to stop taking it immediately" because it can
chronic liver disease.
Ephedra-is linked to
high blood pressure, strokes and heart attaches and is 200
times more likely to cause an adverse reaction than all
other herbs combined!
Kava-is suspected in
liver damage and has resulted in 11 liver transplants.
PC SPES and SPES are
spiked with hormones, blood thinner, an anti-inflammatory
and several other drugs.
thyroid hormone which can cause strokes and heart attacks.
to be toxic to liver.
CSPI Nutrition Action Nov 2003 For more on the subject
see Natural Dental
Weight and Teeth
overweight may also contribute to bacterial infection of the
gums that can lead to tooth loss. In a study at Case
Western Reserve University , obese adults between he ages of
18-34 were 76% more likely to have periodontal disease
than similar aged people at a healthy weight. And adults
under 35 with large waistlines, at least 34 inches for
women and 40 inches from men, were about twice as likely to
have gum disease as their slimmer counterparts. While
the study does not prove that obesity causes gum disease, it points
out that excess fat secretes substances called cytokines that
can damage tissues around the teeth. Also heavy
consumption of sugary foods may allow bacteria to thrive in
the mouth, while fiber rich fruits and vegetable may inhibit
Diet Changes Because of Tooth Loss
Could Lead to Heart Risk
Changes in diet because of tooth loss
could increase the risk of developing chronic ailments, including
cardiovascular disease, according to a study in this month's Journal
of the American Dental Association (JADA). In the study, researchers
assessed the relationship between tooth loss and changes in diet over an
eight-year period among 31,813 male health professionals. They focused
on consumption of specific foods and nutrients associated with
cardiovascular and other systemic diseases. The results of this
study support the detrimental impact of tooth loss on dietary intake.
Results suggest that changes in diet owing to tooth loss could
contribute to an increased risk of chronic disease that has been
associated with poor dentition. According to the study, the
dietary change of men who lost five or more teeth was unhealthier than
that of men who lost no teeth. www.rdh.net
If you take aspirin frequently, you may want to
pass on ginkgo biloba.
biloba has anti-platelet properties that may reduce blood
clotting. Aspirin is an anticoagulant, or blood thinner, that
also may increase the time it takes for blood to clot. Thus,
combining gingko use with daily or frequent aspirin use could
increase the risk of bleeding complications. Ask your doctor
before taking both regularly.
RealAge Cost: Taking
unnecessary vitamins and supplements can make your RealAge as
much as 1.7 years older.
|What a Grind
|Reducing your caffeine intake
may help keep nighttime teeth grinding and jaw
clenching to a minimum.
Consuming stimulants such as
caffeine appears to increase the risk of
bruxism, a sleep disorder characterized by
nighttime teeth grinding or jaw clenching that
can damage teeth. If you grind, cut back on
caffeine and see your dentist or doctor for more
RealAge Benefit: Actively patrolling your
health can make your RealAge as much as 12 years
Acne Treatment May Cause
Appearance of Discolored Gums
use of minocycline, an antibiotic prescribed in the treatment
of acne and rheumatoid arthritis can cause the teeth and bone
to discolor and may make gum tissue appear blackish-blue in
color. Permanent teeth could become permanently
discolored with continued use of this medication. Journal
of Periodontology. Dentistry Today pg 36 September 03
Osteoporosis, a bone
disorder affecting 28 million Americans, also increases
those patients risk factors for tooth loss, bone loss and
periodontal disease according to AGD.
Early warning signs of
osteoporosis may include:
more severe gum disease
bone loss around teeth
dentures becoming loose
ill filling dentures that
lead to mouth sores and difficulty speaking or
Dentist also may be able to
help detect the first stages of osteoporosis through dental
x-rays, which have the ability to show the amount of jawbone
loss from year to year, signifying advancing stages of the
disease. Dentistry Today 9/03
Bacterial Infections Can Halt Oral
Posted on: 09/23/2003.... "Extreme
Makeover," helps people enhance their features from
head-to-toe through plastic surgery. However, if a patient
already has a bacterial infection in the body or mouth, the
surgical procedure may have to be postponed.
On one episode, the patient was unable to
proceed with breast augmentation because of a bacterial
infection in her mouth known as periodontal
disease. The periodontist and plastic surgeon were
concerned that the bacteria in the patient's mouth may
affect the outcome of her plastic surgery.
Periodontitis is a bacterial infection of
the gums, bone and periodontal ligament. The bacteria from
periodontitis can enter the blood stream and cause systemic
complications, The bacteria in the bloodstream
can compromise recovery from any surgery, but is
particularly problematic for patients receiving implants,
transplants or replacements of body parts since it may cause
these procedures to fail. Before undergoing surgery,
patients should have a periodontal examination to ensure that
they don't have bacteria in their mouth that may affect their
Source: American Academy of Periodontology
A Pain in the Brain
Of the 46 percent of women and 38 percent of men who
regularly suffer from tension headaches, many may not realize the source
of head pain may be directly linked to the mouth. Rather than
reaching for a bottle of painkillers, people who suffer from tension
headaches should consider reaching for their phone and calling their
dentist. Tension headache sufferers often blame headaches on a stressful
day or a bad night's sleep but when the headaches consistently keep
coming back, dentists can help investigate the real source of the pain
to determine a diagnosis. A dentist can look in a patient's mouth and
tell by how the jaw is positioned or by how the teeth are aligned
whether or not the mouth may be the source of the pain. Nearly
two-thirds of tension headache sufferers clench or grind their teeth,
which is known to trigger a headache. The size, position and
movement of the jaw muscles also is a factor, which is why 70 percent of
Temporomandibular Disorder (TMD) patients
complain of this problem. Although the medical community has a role in
helping patients identify and cure headache pain, the dentist's office
should be their first stop on the way to becoming headache-free.
Various herbal supplements
have been reported or are suspected to interact with certain
oral health drugs, the most important ones being 1)
bromelain, cayenne, chamomile, feverfew, dong quai, eleuthro/Seberian
ginseng, garlic, ginkgo, ginger, ginseng and licorice
interacting with aspirin; 2) aloe latex, ephedra, ginseng,
rhubarb, cascara sagrada, licorice, and senna interacting with
corticosteriods; 3) kava, St. John's wort, chamomile, and
valerian interacting with central nervous system (CNS)
depressant drugs; and 4) herbs acting on the gastrointestinal
system, altering the absorption of several orally administered
drugs. Further, the use of some herbal supplements has been
reported to be associated with oral manifestations, including aphthous
ulcers, lip and tongue irritation, and swelling with feverfew;
gingival bleeding with feverfew and ginkgo; tongue numbness
with echinacea; xerostomia with St. John's wort; oral and
lingual dyskinesia with kava; and salivation with yohimbe.
These potential effects of herbal supplements in conjunction
with factors related to regulation restrictions suggest that
the use of these products may be associated with various
adverse reactions that can affect oral health and
treatment. [JADHA www.adha.org Winter 2003]
The Effect of Different
Types of Smoking Habits on Periodontal Attachment -
Journal of the International Academy of Periodontology April
2003, Ashri NY, Al-Sulamani A
The result showed that there is
increased loss of attachment in smokers
than non-smokers. However, when comparing Shesha smokers to
cigarette smokers it was found that Shesha smokers had a
greater attachment loss, recession and deeper pocket
depth than cigarette and Argela smokers. These findings
suggest that all types of tobacco consumption increase
periodontal disease severity and Shesha smoking had a
greater effect than cigarette and Argela smoking on disease
severity. This study confirms that tobacco is an important
risk factor for periodontal disease.
|Sleep, Sleep Relief
|You might be able to give
nighttime heartburn the slip by having a snoring
In a recent study of people
with heartburn and sleep apnea -- a snoring
condition in which soft tissue in the throat
occasionally obstructs the airway -- treating
sleep apnea resulted in a dramatic reduction in
heartburn symptoms for the patients. See your healthcare
provider for advice on sleep apnea
RealAge Benefit: Getting 6 to 8 hours of
sleep per night can make your RealAge as much as
3 years younger.
splitting revisited a follow-up
Illinois bans tongue splitting.
Newly signed legislation has outlawed "tongue
splitting," an increasingly popular practice in which
"the goal is to look more reptilian," Tongue
splitting is the act of surgically cutting, or splitting, the
tongue lengthwise, usually to the uvula—and is often
accompanied by shaving the teeth down to sharp points. It is
quite different from a tongue stud or ring. "Tongue
splitting is a complicated surgical procedure, it could hit
an artery or vein and cause some serious
trauma,". "There clearly is the risk of a
submandibular infection that could lead to blocking
of the airways, paralysis, speech problems and other dangers—especially
if an untrained person performs the procedure." The law
has made illegal any tongue splitting unless performed by a
licensed physician or dentist, and only if a therapeutic or
clinical basis for that individual.
Away Artery Plaques
your teeth twice per day not only will remove
plaque from your teeth, but it also may keep
plaques from forming in your arteries.
Research shows that tooth
loss is associated with higher levels of plaque
in the arteries that lead to the brain.
Older adults who had lost many teeth were more
likely to have the plaques compared to people
who didn't experience major tooth loss as they
RealAge Benefit: Flossing
and brushing your teeth daily can make your
RealAge as much as 6.4 years younger
New Cavity Fighting Agent
Significantly More Effective Than Fluoride
Ortek Therapeutics Inc.
announced today that CaviSt at(TM), a new cavity
fighting agent, was significantly more effective than fluoride
in reducing cavities According to the study, children
who brushed with a CaviStat toothpaste had 96% fewer cavities
than children who brushed with fluoride toothpastes. .
CaviStat is the first in a new class of cavity fighting
compounds that can counter the production of harmful plaque
acids while simultaneously promoting remineralization of the
teeth. CaviStat contains the amino acid, arginine, in
conjunction with bicarbonate and calcium carbonate. These
components are food grade, and unlike fluoride, are safe
for young children to swallow in a toothpaste and can be
added to candies and gum. Cavities are still one of the
most prevalent diseases worldwide. It affects people of all
age groups. This infectious disease occurs when bacteria
on tooth surfaces convert sugars to harmful acids that
dissolve the teeth over time. CaviStat(TM) is designed to
interrupt this process. Alongside the acid-producing bacteria
are other bacteria that metabolize arginine and produce base,
which neutralizes the cavity forming acids. This
elevated pH environment also promotes absorption of calcium
back into the teeth, a process called remineralization.
SARS & Dental Offices
There has been no reported
transmission of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) to
dental health care workers, nor is there any evidence that
SARS can be transmitted by aerosol-generating dental
procedures, reports the ADA Council on
Aspirin may reduce oral
Regular use of low-dose
aspirin may significantly reduce the risk of cancer of the
mouth, throat and esophagus. The risk of cancers of the
mouth, throat and esophagus was two thirds lower in people who
had taken low-dose aspirin regularly for 5 years or more,
compared with those who never used aspirin regularly.
[British J of Cancer 2003;88:672-674. cited Contemporary Oral
Hygiene 2003; 3(6)]
First tongue transplant
patient reported doing well Vienna (Reuters)—The
Austrian surgeon who led the world's first tongue transplant
said the operation appears to have been a success and
said the patient was recovering well four days after the
Saliva May help Diagnose
common species were found to be highly sensitive and specific
in predicting the presence of an oral caner lesion. Of
the three species C. gingivalis showed the
strongest association between salivary species and oral
cancer. While oral cancer is the sixth most common cancer
in the US, these malignancies are often difficult to diagnose.
They frequently mimic benign condition, are not easily
visualized, and are generally not painful until they progress
beyond the early stages. Therefore, many oral cancer
patients are diagnosed only after symptoms occur, when their survival
rates are poor. An early diagnostic test would
save lives and reduce the disfigurement and functional
The Diagnostic Potential of Salivary
Bacteria as Indicators of Oral Cancer, Dr. Mager. Frosyth
Institute, Collaborative Techniques Summer 2003.
Dental complaints in
emergency departments: A national perspective
Using nationally representative data, we sought
to describe the incidence of emergency department (ED) visits
for dental- related complaints for children and adults in the
United States. We hypothesized that dental-related ED visits
were more likely than other ED visits to have Medicaid or no
insurance as the payer. During the 4-year period from
1997 to 2000, there were an estimated 2.95 million ED visits
in the United States for complaints of tooth pain or tooth
injury, for an average of 738,000 visits annually.
Population-based rates and proportion of all ED visits for
dental complaints were highest in the 19- to 35-year-old
group, accounting for 1.3% of all ED visits and 5.6 ED
visits per 1,000 people in this age category. EDs are an
important point of care for dental-related complaints,
particularly for individuals who lack private insurance. ED
providers should be equipped to triage, diagnose, provide
basic treatment, and ensure appropriate follow-up care for
dental problems, which may require enhancement of dental
training for emergency medicine providers and improved dental
care during and after ED visits.
[Ann Emerg Med. 2003;42:93-99.]
detects heart problems
A dentist may
be the first one to suspect health problems, including heart
disease. A sore or painful jaw is one indicator of heart
disease. There's also a connection between gum disease and
heart problems. By eliminating a local infection involving
a tooth or the gums, patients have been able to decrease blood
pressure medications and improve overall health. New
research is suggesting that people with gum disease are at
higher risk for heart attacks. If bacteria in the
infected gums dislodge, they can enter the bloodstream, attach
to blood vessels and increase clot formation. That in turn
decreases the blood flow to the heart, increasing chances of a
heart attack and aggravating high blood pressure.
Plaque Can Cause Aspiration Pneumonia
In research on a group of 95 elderly persons
from nursing homes who were hospitalised for severe aspiration
pneumonia, investigators concluded that the bacteriology
associated with their disease could have sprung from
micro-organisms that had been colonized in either their dental
plaque or oropharyngeal cavity at the time of aspiration.
Many older institutionalized patients have deterioration in
their activities of daily living, It is quite plausible that
poor oral health, because of the difficulty of accessing
professional dental care and insufficient or poor oral hygiene,
leads to an environment that promotes colonization of dental
plaques by anaerobic and Gram-negative organisms.
June 2003 of the American Thoracic
Society's peer-reviewed American Journal of Respiratory and
Critical Care Medicine, Ali El-Solh, M.D., M.P.H., of the
Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care, and Sleep Medicine,
University of Buffalo School of Medicine, Buffalo, New York
Quality of life = health,
While having life's cake
and being able to eat it comfortably is a goal we all share,
how much does losing teeth change the quality of life? Can we
manage with fewer teeth? Unstable prostheses? Loose dentures?
For that matter, how do dentures impact on lives? The
hypothesis that adults with teeth had a better oral
health-related quality of life than did adults without
teeth. All denture wearers expressed similar
dissatisfaction with their dentures when they first sought
treatment. Their complaints included looseness, pain beneath
the dentures, and difficulty eating with unstable dentures.
Most complained about mandibular dentures but not about their
maxillary dentures. While complaints by denture wearers
may be similar relative to their dental problems, their
psychological makeup and needs are quite different. Regardless
of treatment, patients with their own teeth reported the best
quality of life-outcomes. Patients who choose to replace
dentures with implants have a poor oral health-related quality
of life and that some of these issues remain post-treatment.
These issues may continue post-treatment, but to a lesser
extent. *Allen PF and McMillan AS:
A longitudinal study of the quality of life outcomes in older
adults requesting implant prostheses and complete removable
dentures. Clin Oral Impl Res 14:173-179, 2003.
|Do you brush your teeth with
too much gusto? Easing off may help keep your
pearly whites healthy.
A recent study revealed that
brushing too long or applying too much pressure
when you brush provides no additional
plaque-removal benefits and may actually harm
gums and tooth enamel. When brushing use a
gentle amount of pressure. Plaque is easily
removed with light strokes.
RealAge Benefit: Flossing
and brushing your teeth daily can make your
RealAge as much as 6.4 years younger.
Oral hygiene breath drink?!
sprays or mints that merely mask breath odor,
Breath~Rephresh(TM) is an innovative drink that actually takes
your breath away, fighting the odor causing effects left by
smoking and ingesting strong flavored foods and beverages,
including alcoholic beverages.
Low-Tar Cigarettes are just as harmful
Millions smoke low-tar, mild, or light
cigarettes, believing they are less harmful than other
cigarettes. No so says the National Cancer Institute. An NCI
review finds that people who switch to light cigarettes are
likely to inhale the same amount of cancer-causing toxins.
Oral Health Mirrors Overall
Poor oral health and untreated oral diseases can have a
significant impact on quality of life. Oral health can
mirror condition of the body. More than 90% of all
systemic disease have oral manifestations, meaning your
dentist may be the first health care provider to diagnose a
75% of the American population is affected by some type of gum
disease or gingivitis. Recent studies show that
infections in the mouth may affect major organs. One
condition is bacterial
endocarditis, a condition in which the lining of the heart
and hear valves become inflamed. Poor mouth care
contributes to oral cancer, which now takes more lives
annually than cervical or skin cancer. Poor oral health affects
the digestive process, which begins with physical and chemical
activities in the mouth. Problems here can lead to
intestinal failure, Irritable Bowel Syndrome and other
Mouth tissues reflect symptoms of other problems. Many
diseases can be diagnosed in their early stages through oral
examination. These disease may be characterized by swollen
gums, mouth ulcers, dry mouth and/or excessive gum
problems. Some of these diseases include diabetes,
leukemia, cancer, heart disease and kidney disease.
Seeing a dentist every six months can help identify disease in
their earliest stages. A regular exam allows your dentist
to be an active partner in helping you to maintain and keep
good health Theses exams pick up on poor nutrition and
hygiene, growth and development problems and improper jaw
alignment, and home care for special oral health care needs.
"...Another even uglier
war is affecting our country; missing and abducted
children. In addition to these tragedies, lives are lost
unexpectedly in disasters like fires and plane crashes.
Unfortunately, this is reality.
For years, forensic
investigations have relied on dental radiographs and records
to aid in identification and recovery efforts. Now that so
many children and young adults are caries-free, our
traditional information is no longer as valuable. Also, many
investigations have been hampered when records have been
difficult to obtain. Finally, we have a way to help our law
enforcement and governmental agencies more than ever
Science tells us that we
each have a unique bite and that our saliva contains precious
genetic information, as well as our own unique scent. We
now have the ability to record our patient's bite quickly,
accurately and inexpensively with a new product called Toothprints.
It should be stored at room temperature in a marked zip-lock
bag, preferably in a safe place at home. It is
advisable to put a current picture with the Toothprints
record. Valuable genetic information can also be stored
on a cotton swab that has been rubbed on the buccal
mucosa. The swab should be placed in a marked zip-lock bag and
stored in the freezer. Finally, even though Toothprints was
designed for identification of children, this same technology
can be used to record adult dentition. If the impression
material is too small for an adult, once it is flexible it can
be stretched to fit a larger dentition and still capture all
of the necessary information. Some people are concerned about
having fingerprints, personal records and genetic information
stored in gigantic databases. Toothprints eliminates these
issues. Family members can store this information at home or
in a safety deposit box.
Get Healthy Teeth.....Got 2
Sugar is a dental enemy. Which foods are tooth-friendly?
Snack on these picks:
Hard cheeses are loaded
with enamel strengthening calcium and phosphates
Green and black tea and
cocoa have flavonoids and tannins that vanquish
Spicy foods such as chilies
and crunchy munchies like celery increase saliva
production, which flushes out bits of food and bathes
teeth with bicarbonates to protect against acid and
plaque. Self May 2003
Crash test dummy to build a
Two summers ago, a 10-year-old
boy playing Little League baseball found himself sprinting for
home plate. When he glanced up to check the throw from second,
the ball smacked him square in the mouth. In an instant, the
boy lost three upper incisors. The ball luxated the fourth,
fractured his alveolar bone and drove four lower incisors back
into his head. The boy wasn't wearing a mouthguard. But
Dr. David Kenny, who fitted the boy for a partial denture,
says he's treated so many smashed-in kids' faces in his 20
years of pediatric dentistry at the Hospital for Sick
Children. "Kids' bones and teeth aren't done growing yet.
"So when there's facial trauma, all you can really do is
fit them with a partial denture, then remake and adjust it as
they grow. That's thousands of dollars in dental expenses,
with little or no insurance coverage." Dr.
Kenny believes a mouthguard should protect much better than
so- called boil and bite mouthguards currently on the
market—semi- circular pieces of rubber users heat in boiling
water, then bite down to create an impression around the
teeth. Mouthguards are like bumpers on a car, the
bumper takes the hit, but the car's frame—or in a person's
case, bone—absorbs the real force of impact. Dr. Kenny
agrees that custom-made mouthguards shaped by a dentist
will fit better. Each cadaver will be fitted with all
kinds of data input devices, including five strain gauges: one
in the palette, two in the canine fossa and two in the
bilateral zygoma. A baseball pitching machine will launch a
baseball at 50 mph at the cadaver's four upper front teeth,
which Dr. Kenny says suffer most from sports-related
injuries. Dr. Kenny and his colleagues will start
building a working prototype of the new mouthguard.
Study finds some women lose
sensitivity to sweet tastes after menopause.
After menopause, some women
may increase their use of sweeteners due to a decreased
sensitivity to sweet tastes, with potentially serious
complications for obesity and diabetes. Researchers found that
the hormonal changes women experience during menopause seem to
reduce the ability to taste sucrose for some. Comparing 20
postmenopausal women with 20 men of similar age, noted a
significantly lower sensitivity to sucrose on the palates of the
women. However, sensitivity to salt, sourness and bitterness
was virtually the same for both groups and there were no
changes in taste sensations on the tongue. The researchers said
this decline in sensitivity to sweetness was often
accompanied by dietary choices skewed toward sweeter foods
reported by the women subjects. While only 35 percent of the
women said they had noticed a change in taste perception, 45
percent reported an increased preference for sweeter fare. The
researchers noted that a preference for sweeter foods could have
potentially serious consequences for diseases such as obesity,
heart disease and diabetes.
British Dental Journal
Oral contraceptive may
increase pain after wisdom tooth extraction
tests on 267 women showed that those on the birth control pill
were more susceptible than non-users to both postoperative
pain and a condition known as 'dry
socket.' In this condition, normal healing of the
vacant tooth socket is delayed by the failure of a blood clot
to form. Infection instead causes the socket to remain empty.
In the study, pain on the day after the operation was
experienced by 30 percent of pill takers compared to just 11
percent of non-users. Five days after the operation the
difference was 14 percent compared to 5 percent. The
researchers said these results suggest that the pill may
reduce the pain threshold. The differential was similar
when the development of dry socket was compared. Here, 11
percent of pill users were affected compared to 4 percent of
SOURCE: British Dental Journal 2003;194:453-455.
Sweets For Stronger Teeth?
Scientists as the Paffenbarger
Research Center in the USA are working to develop gum and
sweets that will aid in the remineralization of teeth, reports
the American Dental Association. Calcium phosphate-based
technologies have been shown to eliminate the ability of
sucrose challenged plaque to demineralize tooth enamel and,
therefore, prevent caries. Other studies have shown that
separate calcium and phosphate compounds can even produce a
more positive affect by remineralizing enamel.
|If you're considering investing
in an electric
toothbrush, the move may make your teeth
Recent research revealed that,
compared to manual tooth brushing, brushing with
an electric toothbrush may remove more plaque.
In one study, people who used electric
toothbrushes removed 11% more plaque compared to
people who brushed manually. They also had a
slightly lower risk of gingivitis.
RealAge Benefit: Flossing
and brushing your teeth daily can make your
RealAge as much as 6.4 years younger.
Kids and Mouth Breathing
breathing is an upper airway obstruction which causes the
inability to breath through the nose and is a major cause of
lots of medical problems. These children
need orthodontic evaluation at age five instead of 7 to avert future
medical problems and correct existing problems.
Mouth breathers Symptoms:
Long, narrow face
Difficulty breathing through
Smaller in weight and
Dry, large lips
Dark circles under eys
Eyes that tear
Excessive creases between
lower lip and chin
Small mouth, crowded teeth
Dentalnotes Spring 2003.
tooth-whitening gents may be able to prevent staining
according to researchers at the University of Brighton. In the
study, the tooth model was pretreated with the whitening
agent, and then a standardized tea stain solution was added.
Minimal stain adhered to the hydroxyapatite surface, thus
demonstrating an inhibitory action. British
study suggests tooth whiteners may
also prevent staining
Dentistry Today 2002; 21(12);25-26]
|Here's another reason to get
your fair share of calcium and vitamin D: it can
help keep your smile young.
In a study of older adults,
those who took a daily calcium and vitamin D
supplement were less likely to lose teeth
compared to older adults who did not take a
supplement. Getting an adequate amount of
calcium and vitamin D in the diet can help keep
teeth healthy by preventing osteoporosis, a
disease that may weaken oral bone structures.
RealAge Benefit: Getting
400 IU of vitamin D and 1,200 milligrams of
calcium per day can make your RealAge as much as
1.3 years younger.
Amalgam rulings are tripartite
“voluminous papers” and hearing “extensive oral
arguments,” Judge Roy granted dentistry’s motion to
dismiss both complaints on grounds that the plaintiffs had
failed to state a claim for which relief could be granted.
Originally filed May 20, 2002,
in Syracuse, N.Y., by Los Angeles attorney Shawn Khorrami, the
two lawsuits are identified in court records as Campbell vs.
ADA, et al. and Kids Against Pollution vs. ADA, et al.
Both suits claimed the
defendants had deceived the plaintiffs and the public about
health risks allegedly associated with dental amalgam.
Some sample statements from
and Drug Administration, October 1997: “[Our] analysis
did not support claims that individuals with dental
amalgam restorations will experience adverse health
effects, including neurologic, renal or developmental
Health Service, September 1995: “There is no sound
evidence of any harm for millions of Americans who have dental
amalgam fillings and no persuasive reason to believe
that avoiding amalgams or having existing amalgams
replaced will have a beneficial effect on health ... the
removal process itself may expose the patient to
consensus statement, September 1997: “No controlled
studies have been published demonstrating systemic adverse
effects from amalgam restorations. Amalgam restorations
are durable and cost-effective... ”
Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, August
1991: “There is no scientific evidence that currently
used restorative materials cause significant side effects.
Available data do not justify discontinuing the use of any
currently available dental restorative material or
recommending their replacement.”
Reports, May 1991: “Removing amalgam in favor of an
alternative material can be a risk in itself. With large
fillings, the process can damage tooth structure and may
injure the nerve, requiring a root-canal procedure.” The
magazine later noted: “Given
their solid track record and a risk that’s still
conjecture, amalgam fillings are still your best bet.”
on Scientific Affairs, April 1998: “Given the available
scientific information and considering the demonstrated
benefits of dental amalgams, unless new scientific
research dictates otherwise, there currently appears to be
no justification for discontinuing the use of dental
Modern Lifestyle Damaging
fast-paced lifestyle is damaging oral and overall health,
according to a new study in the latest issue of General
Dentistry. Quick meals made up of nutrition bars and
carbonated beverages may help to keep teens alert during the
day, but they're contributing to permanent health damage. '
Premature loss of tooth enamel and weakening of overall tooth
structure are two devastating oral affects of teens' poor diet
that can not be reversed later in life. Dr Soxman's
research shows that drinking carbonated beverages seems to
be one of the most significant causes of increased cavities
and obesity for today's teens. Fifteen percent of American
adolescents aged six to
19 are overweight. This number is expected to increase as 10
per cent of children aged between two and five are overweight,
and today's pre-school children are already becoming
addicted to caffeine and sugar.
Toothbrush Trounces Car as Top Invention
is the king of inventions.
So say the findings of a new survey released
Wednesday by the Lemelson-MIT Invention Index at the
Massachusetts Institute of Technology, which asked which of
five inventions Americans could not live without. The toothbrush
emerged the undisputed champ, beating out the car, the
personal computer, the cell phone and the microwave -- in that
order -- as the most prized innovation.
But the toothbrush finding has received the
most attention, researchers said, because it shows that the
public recognizes that great inventions don't have to be
It's been a long road to the top for the
toothbrush. The first was built in 1498 by a Chinese emperor
who had hog bristles embedded in a bone handle, than the hog
bristle toothbrush became popular in Europe, but because it
cost so much, poor families would often share the same brush.
It wasn't until 1938, that DuPont introduced nylon
bristles as a replacement for pig hair.
By Jeordan Legon CNN
Based on data from 29 clinical studies,
dental researchers found that only one type of power
toothbrush—the rotational oscillation
toothbrush—did a better job of cleaning teeth than a
Rotational oscillation toothbrushes removed
up to 11 percent more plaque and reduced gingival
bleeding by up to 17 percent more than did manual or other
power toothbrushes, according to research results from the
Cochrane Oral Health Group.
Oral Health Status of Rural
Adults in the U.S.
This is the first report to document oral health status
indicators for adult in rural residency. Conclusions
from this study show:
poverty is a significant influence
on frequency of dental visits in rural areas
more likely to be
edentulous, 2.5 times higher in rural area than urban
more likely to have
experienced dental cavities
less likely to have had a
dental visit in past 12 months
more likely to have teeth
extracted instead of restored
less likely to have dental
care needs met
complete tooth loss occurs significantly
more in rural over urban areas
greater needs for removable
less need for fixed
quality of life for older
adults in rural area may be diminished as result of
increased dental disability
less likely to have oral
cancer screening done
This data shows that unmet
dental needs in rural areas may profoundly affect a person's quality
Oral Health Status of Rural Adults in
the U.S.; Dr. Vargas, Dr. Dye; Dr Haves; JADA, Vol 133, Dec
2002 pgs. 1672-1681.
|Make Your Mouth
|Don't miss out on regular
dental exams. Your appointments may reveal more
than just a healthy smile.
Dental exams are not only a
good way to keep up on the health of your teeth,
but they also give dentists the opportunity to
examine your mouth for clues to overall health.
Oral cancers, diabetes, and osteoporosis are
just a few of the conditions that a dental exam
may help to diagnose. Schedule your checkups
every six months to one year.
RealAge Benefit: Flossing
and brushing your teeth daily can make your
RealAge as much as 6.4 years younger
|Tooth Be Told
|For a snack that you can really
smile about, skip the chips and pick up a piece
of reduced-fat cheese.
A recent study revealed that certain
proteins contained in dairy products such as
cheese may help to restore minerals in tooth
enamel. What's more, cheese is high in
calcium, a mineral that helps to strengthen the
bones that support teeth. Keep your saturated
fat intake down by choosing small portions of
RealAge Benefit: Flossing
and brushing your teeth daily can make your
RealAge as much as 6.4 years younger
USING SALIVA TO DIAGNOSE
BREAST CANCER IN WOMEN
Breast cancer afflicts 1 in
every 10 women. There is still a need for additional
diagnostic methods to reduce the number of false-positives and
false-negatives that occur in breast cancer detection. A team
of dental researchers in Mississippi conducted a five-year
study to test the utility of a salivary component as a marker
for the detection of breast cancer. Subjects were classified
into three groups: healthy, benign, and with breast cancer.
The last group was followed for five years while undergoing
treatment. The study revealed a soluble salivary form of a
protein called the c-erbB-2 protein, which is found in the
saliva of both healthy and diseased individuals. However,
among the cancer patients, its concentration was markedly
elevated. The results of this study are encouraging that this
protein has the potential for use in initial detection and/or
follow-up screening for the presence of breast cancer in
women, as well as to monitor patients on a variety of
treatment regimens. "The Use
of Salivary c-erbB-2 to Detect Breast Cancer in Women: A
Breakthrough in Salivary Diagnostics", by C.F. Streckfus
and colleagues, of the University of Mississippi Medical
Center, Jackson, General Session of the International
Association for Dental Research.