This entry was posted on Friday, February 8th, 2013
Question: What Is Oral Leukoplakia?
Answer: Leukoplakia is an asymptomatic lesion in the oral mucosa – a specialized type of tissue that lines the mouth. Oral cancer, especially oral squamous cell carcinoma, often develops out of these lesions. Periodontitis increases the risk of developing oral leukoplakia and mucosal lesions that are predisposed to become oral cancer, according to a recent study in Oral Oncology.
The study’s authors reported that the findings provide clues into the complex relationship between systemic and local disease. Other studies have shown that as many as 18 percent of oral premalignant lesions will develop into oral cancer.
The oral cancer rate attributed to leukoplakia is between six and 29 per 100,000, according to the authors. Smoking and drinking alcohol are the main risk factors for this disease, but acute infections in the oral cavity may contribute to the risk.
Question: Can coconut oil help fight tooth decay?
Answer: Coconut oil may help to prevent cavities, according to a recent study. Researchers from the Athlone Institute of Technology in Ireland found that enzyme-treated coconut oil – similar to what would happen to coconut oil after it’s been digested – is able to stop the growth of cavity-causing bacteria.
The researchers conducted their study on untreated coconut oil and the enzyme-treated coconut oil. They put the oils up against Streptococcus bacteria, including the tooth decay-causing Streptococcus mutans strain, and found that the enzyme-treated oil stopped its growth.
“Incorporating enzyme-modified coconut oil into dental hygiene products would be an attractive alternative to chemical additives, particularly as it works at relatively low concentrations,” says study researcher Dr. Damien Brady. “Also, with increasing antibiotic resistance, it is important that we turn our attention to new ways to combat microbial infection.”
Find out more about Oral Oncology
Visit the Athlone Institute Of Technology
This entry was posted on Wednesday, February 6th, 2013
The Eco-Dentistry Association will hold the 2013 Green Dentistry Conference – the industry’s first dental conference devoted exclusively to high-tech, environmentally-sound dental practices – May 3 and 4, 2013 at the Robert Redford Conference Center in Sundance, Utah.
The Eco-Dentistry Association provides education, standards and connection to support the success of the industry and the wellness lifestyle of the patients it serves. Green dentistry offers new opportunities for manufacturers, distributors, product innovators and industry educators to achieve success in the emerging model of wellness lifestyle dentistry. The conference’s goal is to showcase information and products dental professionals need to create and maintain state-of-the-art green practices.
Dental professionals scheduled to speak include:
- Gary Takacs, Takacs Learning Center – the essentials of branding and marketing a green dental practice
- Marty Jablow, DMD, Paul Feuerstein, DMD, and John Flucke, DDS – how dental technologies reduce waste and save energy and boost the practice bottom line
- Bill Roth, a noted sustainability author and speaker, will lead a break out group – Green Builds Business
Panel discussions will cover everything from building and financing a high-tech, green dental practice to creating a successful green hygiene program. Unique, small group, hands-on opportunities with dental technology such as lasers and CAD/CAM systems will also be available. Optional morning yoga and meditation will be available for all attendees and there will be presentations focusing on the importance of work-life balance to support personal and professional success. On Sunday, May 5, attendees will have the option of hiking in the 6,000 acres of wilderness adjacent to the Sundance Resort, and can participate in fly-fishing, golf or the spa.
Discounted early bird registration opens Tuesday, January 22nd, 2013 and Continuing Education credits will be available – attendance is limited to the first 100 registrants. Customizable sponsorship opportunities are available for companies offering green dental, green building, or wellness products and services.
For more information visit the Eco-Dentistry Association
This entry was posted on Monday, February 4th, 2013
Scientists from the University of Pennsylvania have discovered a possible mechanism than can prevent and even halt tooth decay due to periodontal diseases. They say that blocking out molecular receptors that the bacteria targets during the start of the disease can stop the bacteria from growing in the mouth. The scientists research on mice showed that this strategy prevents the disease from progressing and in some cases prevents it.
Previous research had shown that porphyromonas gingivalis – the bacteria associated with many cases of periodontitis – hijacks a receptor known as C5aR. The receptor – present in white blood cells – is part of the immune system and can cause serious inflammation if triggered. By blocking this receptor the bacteria are able to not be affected by the body’s immune system, and as time passes, grow in the mouth and cause the inflammation to become more severe.
A study published in 2011 stated that mice lacked C5aR and therefore did not develop periodontal disease. They also lacked a set of proteins called toll-like receptors – known as TLRs that are involved in activation of immune cell response – and did not show bone loss associated with periodontitis.
The current study published in the Journal of Immunology – found that activating these receptors triggers an inflammation and that blocking just one receptor – C5aR – with an antagonist C5aRA reduced the inflammation by 80 percent. When the mice were given C5aRA two weeks after an infection, the strategy still worked and the inflammation was reduced by 70 percent.
“Regardless of whether we administered the C5a receptor antagonist before the development of the disease or after it was already in progress, our results showed that we could inhibit the disease either in a preventive or a therapeutic mode,” said Penn’s School of Dental Medicine’s George Hajishengallis.
Learn more at the Journal Of Immunology
Visit Penn Dental School
This entry was posted on Friday, February 1st, 2013
A perfect set of white teeth can go a long way in boosting your morale and giving your face an overall appealing look. Cosmetic dentistry has come a long way and today whitening porcelain veneers are among the top selling services. One of the initial means of getting a set of white teeth was through the lengthy process of teeth whitening. There are however several advantages to going the veneer way.
The Benefits Of Whitening Veneers
There are cases where discoloration of the teeth is totally irreversible. In such cases the process of whitening can only give you a surface level cleaning, which will turn dull in a few days. Whitening veneers on the other hand are universal in terms of application and can serve as a permanent solution to such discolored teeth. The aesthetic levels you get with veneers are far superior to teeth whitening, simply because the whitening process alters the degree of discoloration, while veneers give your teeth a natural, white look. This is because of the porcelain which works similarly to enamel, reflecting only a certain amount of light. Being able to spot the difference between real teeth and veneers is not easy.
With veneers you have the benefit of having perfect white teeth for a long while to come. There is no need for multiple sittings as is the case with the whitening process. The color of your teeth remains naturally white for almost two decades if cared for the right way. You will not suffer from any discoloration or dulling of the whiteness of your veneers. Of course, the process itself is quite efficient and you can have it completed in a short while with long-lasting results, with only a one-time investment.
Porcelain veneers can be used, besides tooth whitening to cover up:
- Teeth that are cracked or that have splintered due to an accident
- To correct minor alignment issues without multiple procedures
- To cover up any gaps in your teeth
Things To Consider
To get dental veneers, the cosmetic dentist you approach has to be someone who is experienced and who works with quality products. You can narrow down a specialist in your area based on recommendations you get. Visit each of these dentists and let them evaluate your case. Most first-time appointments and evaluations are done for free. If your dentist can show you some before and after pictures of cases that are similar to yours and which they have done earlier, it will help you get a better sense of the procedure and the end results.
Check on the pricing. What you have to remember is that the cost of the procedure can vary depending on the city you are in, the qualifications of your doctor, the clinic they practice in and other such factors. Be sure to have all the financial details worked out initially so that you are not worried about anything once the procedure is done.
With the right kind of planning and research, you will be able to get a set of white teeth that will definitely have heads turning.
Jessica Spencer is a niche blogger and currently works for dental veneers in Bellevue.
This entry was posted on Wednesday, January 30th, 2013
A new research study – by the University of Helsinki – shows that women with higher hormone levels have a greater chance of developing gum disease during pregnancy. The study found that the levels of the hormone estrogen – found in pregnant women – strongly determined their risk of developing gum disease. Women with higher levels of estrogen and dental plaque – during all three trimesters – had more pregnancy-related gum disease than those with lower levels.
The study also revealed that estrogen levels of pregnant women significantly increased during their second and third trimesters and returned to pre-pregnant levels after delivery. Women suffering with higher levels of plaque experienced more bleeding gums compared to those with less plaque.
Karen Coates, a dental advisor at the British Dental Health Foundation, calls the research a positive step towards improving the oral health of pregnant women. “It takes on increased significance, given that only recently we have seen new research linking preterm births and severe gum disease,” she says. “High levels of oestrogen are commonly seen in healthy pregnancies, and this only reinforces the foundation’s message that pregnant women really have to look after their oral health throughout those nine months.
“The good news is that taking steps to prevent gum disease from developing are relatively simple. It’s never too late to start looking after your oral health, and becoming pregnant should act as a catalyst to do so for those who may have previously overlooked it. Regular cleaning, regular dental visits and a willingness to keep on top of a good routine will certainly help.”
Find out more about the University Of Helsinki
Learn more about the British Dental Health Foundation
Read more about estrogen
This entry was posted on Monday, January 28th, 2013
James Joseph Crawford, Ph.D., whose body of dental infection control work includes bringing attention to how saliva can be a vessel for easily spread pathogens, passed away on January 11 at age 81.
Dr. Crawford was born in Springfield, Ill. He received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in microbiology from the University of Missouri and a Ph.D. in microbiology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. His post doctorate work at the UNC School of Medicine involved investigations of the bacteria in the nasal passages that cause hearing loss in children with cleft palates. This led to Crawford’s study of anaerobic organisms in the mouth and dental infections.
Crawford joined the UNC School of Dentistry in 1963 and later became a professor of microbiology there. His achievements also included consulting with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the ADA Council on Dental Therapeutics and the ADA Council on Dental Materials, Instruments and Equipment.
Dental Treatment Protection
Dr. Crawford also developed If Saliva Were Red – a visual depiction of how pathogens may be spread through saliva during the practice of dentistry. The Organization for Safety, Asepsis and Prevention teamed with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in 2003 to produce a video of the same name to illustrate how contamination can occur from routine dental treatment and how to take proper precautions to protect dental workers and patients.
Dr. Crawford was also a founding officer of the Organization for Safety, Asepsis and Prevention. In 1998, OSAP established an annual award in Dr. Crawford’s name recognizing lifetime achievement in dental infection prevention and control and honored him as the first recipient. John Molinari, Ph.D., a microbiologist and consultant to the ADA Council on Scientific Affairs, and another founding officer of OSAP, was the second recipient of this award. “He (Crawford) brought microbiology and science into the area of dental infection control,” Dr. Molinari said. “Before then, there were clinical things, such as not wearing gloves. Some things were being sterilized, but others weren’t. He saw what was happening. He saw the potential for hepatitis B infection and other infections, and he was the first one to say, ‘We need to do something about it.’ ”
Visit the UNC School of Dentistry
Find out more about OSAP
Learn more about the ADA
This entry was posted on Friday, January 25th, 2013
Question: Are there any tips you can give me to fight off bad breath?
Answer: Yes! Bad breath is typically caused by not following a good oral hygiene routine, but different infections can also play a role. Be sure to brush and floss your teeth daily.
To keep your gastrointestinal tract health and infection-free, make sure your diet consists of fruits, vegetables, proteins, carbohydrates and plenty of fluids such as water. Eat lots of citrus fruits – grapefruits, oranges and lemons – to improve your breath quality and activate mouth saliva to help keep bacteria away. Eat fibrous fruits and vegetables too – like apples, carrots and celery – to enhance saliva production and reduce plaque build-up. Take fish oils supplements – for the omega-3 to reduce mouth bacteria – or add fish to your diet.
Incorporate natural ingredients into your diet. Magnolia bark contains the natural ingredients magnolol and honokiol, which contain antibacterial ingredients and kill most mouth bacteria. Cinnamon sticks also contain basic oils that kill mouth bacteria. Black tea contains antioxidants that reduce plaque buildup as well and restrain bacteria development.
Use OraMD all-natural liquid toothpaste/mouthwash/breath freshener and follow an oral hygiene program to take care of your mouth and gums.
OraMD recommends its 4-Step Oral Hygiene Program for your good oral health routine.
1) Brush normally twice a day – in the morning and evening – with 2 to 5 drops of OraMD on your toothbrush
2) Floss every evening before brushing – or more frequently as needed – and get any food particles out from between teeth
3) Use OraMD as a mouthwash twice a day – in the morning and evening – to kill the bacteria in the entire mouth including the back of the tongue. Put 2 to 5 drops into an ounce of water and then swish and gargle.
4) Use OraMD in the mid-morning or mid-afternoon as needed. Put 2 to 5 drops on the tip of your tongue to coat the gum line and teeth to kill bacteria and keep your breath fresh.
This entry was posted on Wednesday, January 23rd, 2013
For those interested in learning much more about dentistry, the Sciences Social Network – through its website ScienceIndex.com – has unveiled several new sections including a dentistry category that covers the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of teeth diseases. The section contains over 9,200 articles partly derived from over 100 scientific dentistry journals. The latest articles in this section are also available through a dentistry section RSS feed.
ScienceIndex.com is an Audiology and Dentistry Sciences Social Network established in 1998 to index the very latest news, headlines, references and resources from science journals, books and websites worldwide. The site covers news in all fields of biology, business, chemistry, engineering, geography, health, mathematics and society. The new dentistry category is located in the field of health sciences. A new audiology section – also in the health sciences section – has also been established. The health sciences category covers prevention, treatment, and management of illness by medical health professions. Its other sections include dermatology, endocrinology, gastroenterology, healthcare, immunology, medicine, neurology, nutrition, oncology, pathology, pharmacology, psychiatry, psychology, radiology, rheumatology, and surgery.
The Sciences Social Network contains over 1.93 million posts distributed among its 75 categories – 83,700 users monitor over 15,000 journals publishing within the scope of the site. Due to its further improved software platform, the delay between original publication and appearance at ScienceIndex.com is no more than 24 hours.
An article recently included in the dentistry section demonstrates elevated oral and systemic levels of soluble triggering receptor expressed on myeloid cells-1 (sTREM-1) in periodontitis. The aim of this study was to investigate the sTREM-1 concentrations in saliva and serum of individuals without periodontitis and persons with chronic or generalized aggressive periodontitis. The authors concluded that the increased oral and systemic levels of sTREM-1 in periodontitis denote a value for this molecule as a biomarker for the disease and may also have implications in the association between periodontal infections and systemic inflammatory response.
Another dentistry article provides evidence that brain activity is associated with human unilateral chewing. Brain mechanisms underlying mastication have been studied in non-human mammals but less so in humans. The authors, therefore, used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to evaluate brain activity in humans during gum chewing. Their results provide evidence for specific brain areas associated with chewing in humans and demonstrated that brain activation patterns may dynamically change over the course of chewing sequences.
This entry was posted on Monday, January 21st, 2013
An intriguing connection in the world of medical research has spurred a number of case studies on the subject of gum disease and arthritis. Rheumatoid arthritis, also known as RA, affects approximately 1.5 million adults in America. This debilitating autoimmune disease causes inflammation within the joints, resulting in intense pain, diminished flexibility and, in some cases, damage to the surrounding bone.
Periodontal disease refers to advanced bacterial infection of the gums. It generally follows gingivitis that is left untreated for an extended period of time. If allowed to continue without professional treatment, severe gum disease can lead to dramatic recession of the gums, tooth loss and damage to the bones of the jaw.
While the precise nature of the link between these two diseases is still under research, some facts have emerged that connect them through the bacteria involved. Sufferers of RA who also reported periodontal disease were studied in an effort to pinpoint the connection.
In a study conducted by a research facility at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio, the harmful bacteria found in the mouths of certain patients was traced to the synovial fluid that provides lubrication for the flexing of the knee. Because the kneecap area was already in a compromised state due to the RA, the bacteria that originated in the gums was able to more easily and efficiently reside there – potentially making the pain of the arthritis more severe.
Researchers continue to examine the evidence gleaned from this and similar cases, as well as conduct additional studies, to determine whether or not one condition can be said to cause the other. At this point, it is clear that the connection does, in fact, exist and that the precautions and treatment for periodontal disease should be strongly recommended for patients with RA.
Affects Of Advanced Gum Disease
The results of these studies serve to further strengthen the argument that advanced gum disease does affect other areas of the body, such as the cardiovascular system and digestive system. The emphasis on proper oral hygiene has become a key component in treatment plans for arthritis sufferers in an effort to decrease their joint pain and fatigue overall.
In order to cater more specifically to the oral health needs of arthritis sufferers, the American Dental Association offers these tips for a more effective hygiene routine:
- Because flossing and brushing properly can be exceedingly difficult for people with arthritic joints in their hands, the ADA suggests modifying the type of toothbrush used. A quality, dentist-approved electric brush with a larger handle allows for a better grip and can clean teeth and gums effectively without as many rigorous up-and-down motions.
- Rather than floss the traditional way with the floss wrapped around fingers, RA patients are encouraged to try angled floss holders instead. These plastic devices are affordable and can be found at most drugstores and grocery stores.
- An RA patient, whose immune system experiences difficulty in differentiating between healthy cells and a threat, needs more oral protection than a healthy individual. A mouthwash used two to three times per day can help keep bacteria at bay and fight tooth decay.
- Smokers are much more likely to develop gum disease as well as a host of other medical conditions.
Talk to your dentist about your RA. He or she will be able to tell you more about the ways you can protect yourself from periodontal disease, thereby potentially improving your overall sense of health and well being.
The Face and Jaw Surgery Center serves all of North Dakota and North West Minnesota.
This entry was posted on Friday, January 18th, 2013
New research – published in the Journal of Periodontal Research – shows that the antibacterial properties of blackberry extract could help to prevent or aid in the treatment of gum disease. The natural extract from blackberries has previously been linked with blocking the spread of cancer cells, and also showed the greatest total antioxidant capacity when measured against blueberry, raspberry, red currant, and cultivated and wild strawberries. Strawberries and green vegetables have been linked to reducing the chance of developing oral cancer, while other studies have discovered fish and fish oil can fight gum disease.
Marionberries, Boysenberries, Loganberries and other blackberries are high in gallic acid, rutin and ellagic acid – a known chemopreventative – with anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties, according to the Berry Health Benefits Network. Blackberries have one of the highest antioxidant levels of fruits regularly tested and are also rich in vitamin C and fiber, which have been shown to help reduce the risks of certain cancers. Blackberries are also low in calories, carbohydrates and have no fat, which makes them popular in low-carb and low-calorie diets.
“Having a balanced diet rich in vitamins, minerals and fresh produce to provide anti-oxidants is something we should all be striving to achieve,” says Dr. Nigel Carter OBE, chief executive of the British Dental Health Foundation. “It can help to prevent a number of oral health problems including gum disease and oral cancer, not to mention potential heart problems too. Although the study is promising, it is important to remember that any use of blackberries in preventing and treating gum disease should be done along with maintaining a good oral hygiene routine.”
Find out more about the Journal Of Periodontal Research
Learn about the Berry Health Benefits Network
Read more about the British Dental Health Foundation