How to EFFECTIVELY Brush Your Teeth!
April 7, 2015
How Dentists Could Screen for Diabetes
I came across a very thought-provoking read the other day, and I would like to post it on this week's blog. It is interesting how a majority of people "'see a dentist much more regularly than they see a primary care provider,'"
(Reuters Health) - Dentists may be able to screen patients for diabetes while cleaning their teeth, a small study suggests.
Researchers found that testing for diabetes using blood that appears on the gums during a routine oral cleaning might be just as accurate as a standard screening that gets a blood sample by pricking the finger with a tiny needle.
"There are more than 8 million people in this country who have diabetes and don't know it, and many of these people see a dentist much more regularly than they see a primary care provider," said lead study author Sheila Strauss.
"If dentists can screen for diabetes, it may help people get treated sooner when we can get better results managing their disease," said Strauss, an associate professor of nursing and co-director of the Statistics and Data Management Core for New York University's colleges of nursing and dentistry.
Worldwide, nearly one in 10 adults had diabetes in 2014, and the disease will be the seventh leading cause of death by 2030, according to the World Health Organization.
Most of these people have type 2, once known as adult-onset, diabetes, which is associated with obesity and aging and happens when the body can't properly use or make enough of the hormone insulin to convert blood sugar into energy.
Strauss and colleagues focused their research on testing hemoglobin A1c, a protein in red blood cells that gets coated with sugar over time, making it a gauge of average blood sugar levels for the past two or three months
The researchers collected blood samples taken from the gums and the fingers of 408 people treated at dental clinics in New York City. They tested for diabetes, when A1c is at least 6.5 percent, and for elevated “prediabetic” A1c levels of at least 5.7 percent.
To make sure they got enough blood from the gums, they only included people in the study who said that their gums bled when they brushed or flossed their teeth.
The study team also limited participation to people at greatest risk for diabetes. To be included, people had to be at least 45 years old. Or, if they were younger, they had to be overweight and have at least one other risk factor such as an immediate family member with diabetes, a daily routine with little or no exercise, or an ethnicity or race with high diabetes risk, including Latino, black, Native American and Pacific Islander.
The oral-blood and finger-prick test results matched in 97.8 percent of cases diagnosing diabetes, and in 92.9 percent of cases finding prediabetes. And, the oral blood test was able to accurately rule out diabetes 99.1 percent of the time, according to the results published in the American Journal of Public Health.
Because the sample for the study wasn't random, and participants were instead selected based on their expected risk for diabetes, it's possible that the results might not apply to a wider population of people, Strauss said.
One advantage of the selection criteria, though, is that many people with bleeding gums have periodontal disease or gingivitis – both oral health problems that are more common among diabetics, she said.
While the screening approach tested in the study would need to be proven effective by additional research, the possibility of dentists doing oral screenings for diabetes has the potential to help many undiagnosed people get treatment, said Betul Hatipoglu, an endocrinologist and clinical associate professor of medicine at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio.
To be sure, dentists would need training on how to explain the test results to patients who are positive for prediabetes or diabetes, and they would also need a plan in place to refer these people to specialists who can treat the disease, added Hatipoglu, who wasn't involved in the study.
"If the test in this study proves effective with more research, it is going to help get many individuals, especially young adults, who are not going to see a primary care provider unless they are sick," Hatipoglu said.
"I can also see this helping men in their 30s who don't see anybody except to get their teeth cleaned, or women who only go to the OB-gyn to get an annual checkup or prenatal care and don't think about anything else," she said.
SOURCE: bit.ly/1EmSzr4 American Journal of Public Health, online February 25, 2015.
If you have read down to here, I really appreciate it. One read for every blog post I do brings a smile to my face:) Schedule an appointment with our North Bethesda Dental Design team, and get treatment from our Rockville location. Thank you!:)
March 24, 2015
9 Life-Changing Reasons for Getting Dental Implants
Source: Oviedo Premier Dental - Monday, September 20th, 2010 | Filed under Health
As we grow older, we tend to lose facial structure and our faces shorten, resulting in the distinct lines commonly seen in the faces of elderly people.
Due to bone loss, our face shortens. Bone loss happens faster when someone loses their teeth, because one of the primary functions of the jawbone is to support the teeth, and when they fall out, the jawbone begins to slowly deteriorate.
In view of this, here are 9 life-changing reasons for getting dental implants if you are losing your natural teeth:
1. Dental implants preserve your jawbone’s integrity.
Human bones require stimulation to maintain their size and density; if you don’t use them, you lose them.
You must understand that each tooth has a specific job, and the loss of even just one, can seriously impair your bite and chewing capacity. So, when a tooth is lost or removed, the underlying bone is no longer stimulated by the pressure from chewing, which is crucial for keeping your mouth healthy and the bone strong. A dental implant provides this stimulation, and helps to maintain the bone’s integrity, because it works like a real tooth. The sooner you get a dental implant after losing a tooth, the more likely the bone will remain intact.
2. Dental implants help you look younger.
When we are young, everything is in place, and that’s why we look so good. Our teeth and jawbone support our facial features, keeping them in place; thus, when we lose a tooth, our face begins to transform, because things are shifting under our skin. Dental implants assist in slowing down this degenerative process, and can even restore the missing structures. When you are able to smile and laugh without reservations, and eat anything you like, your morale, well-being, and self-image improve dramatically.
3. Dental implants help you speak better.
Many older people use removable partials and/or full dentures that are bulky, difficult to wear, frequently come loose, and very often cause embarrassment as well as some difficulty when speaking.
To the contrary, dental implants are like real teeth, freeing one of all these inconveniences.
4. Dental implants help maintain the tone and size of facial muscles.
As soon as you stop exercising a muscle, it gets smaller, and there are numerous muscles underneath the skin of your face.
5. Dental implants last much longer.
Around 90% of normal dental implants are 100% successful, typically lasting twenty years or more. Due to ordinary wear and dental decay, traditional dental bridges last between five and ten years, and eventually must be replaced; however, dental implants are free of decay because they are made out of titanium.
6. Dental implants help prevent teeth from shifting places and distorting your bite.
In the dental arch, there is a place and function for every tooth, and when one is removed, the others start moving because of the lack of pressure from the missing tooth.
This can cause bite problems as well as the loosening of teeth, which then can lead to abnormal stresses and periodontal disease. Finally, the result is more tooth loss.
Dental implants can act as bookends, securing spaces where teeth are missing.
7. Dental implants improve your smile.
A smile is worth a thousand words… but when your teeth are not healthy, it can really affect your self-image. Dental implants can replace any missing tooth, helping preserve the bone that is needed to support full and beautiful lips. In fact, one of the most important uses of implants is to prevent bone loss in the front of your mouth.
8. Dental implants help a person understand what is happening in their mouth.
Teeth help you feel things in your mouth; you are aware when you bite on a tooth, but when it is removed, it is like cutting a limb off. You are unable to properly feel what you are chewing.
While dental implants are not teeth, they do function as such, by putting pressure on the jawbone in a way similar to natural teeth; thus, offering the natural sensations expected when chewing.
9. Dental implants work better than dentures.
Dental implants last longer than typical removable dentures, are much more comfortable, and provide a dramatically better quality of life for the person receiving them.
Add a comment telling us what you think. Thank you for taking the time to read our blog!
If you are interested in or have a question about Dental Implants, call us at (301) 881 - 8866 or stop by our Rockville office and get the procedure done from the best - the North Bethesda Dental Design team!
March 17, 2015
Spring is almost here!
March 20 marks the official "First Day of Spring." This winter was another gruesome one, but it's almost over! (knock on wood). Here are just a few things I'm looking forward to when springtime comes.
1.) The famous Tidal Basin cherry blossoms
2.) Warmth. Finally!
3.) Chirping birds. Really.
How about you? Feel free to share your thoughts! Leave a message in the comment box above.
March 10, 2015
Can gum disease give you a heart attack?
Source: Marie Suzinsky of Everydayhealth.com
“There is a very logical reason why the two may be connected,” says Peter M. Spalding, DDS, associate professor in the department of growth and development at the University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Dentistry in Lincoln. Experts are starting to understand that the underlying mechanism of cardiovascular disease is related to inflammation, he says.
Some types of bacteria normally occur in your mouth, but if you’re not properly flossing and brushing to remove plaque (that white film caused by bacteria that stick to your teeth after you eat), your risk for gum disease increases. And once gum disease has developed, you create an environment for bacteria that do not normally grow in your mouth, Dr. Spalding says.
What’s more, because gum disease causes your gums to bleed, bacteria can move into your bloodstream, setting up an inflammatory process in the blood vessels, he adds.
How is this related to your heart? The bacteria may increase your risk for heart disease by contributing to the formation of clots or further plaque build-up in your arteries that can interfere with blood flow to the heart.
However, it will take long-term clinical trials to more directly identify gum disease as a cause of heart disease. “We’re not going to have the answers to these questions for quite some time,” Spalding says.
Meanwhile, researchers are also uncovering possible links between gum disease and stroke, osteoporosis, diabetes, respiratory disease, and even preterm babies.
Important Steps for Your Teeth (and Heart)
According to the American Academy of Periodontology, half of all people over age 55 have gum disease. Gum disease is also the main reason people 35 and older lose their teeth.
Your risk for gum disease increases as you get older, but staying on top of your dental health should start in childhood. Regular brushing, flossing, and dental check-ups can help you keep gum disease at bay.
If you happen to notice any of these symptoms, let your dentist know immediately — they could be warning signs of gum disease.
- Sour taste in the mouth
- Persistent bad breath
- Bleeding gums
- Swollen, tender gums
- Loose teeth
- Sensitive teeth
- Pain when chewing
And remember: Preventing gum disease — or treating it with deep cleanings, medication, or surgery — may just help you prevent heart problems down the road.
March 2, 2015
Wow, talk about dangerous weather! This week's weather has inspired me to write some tips to keep in mind when driving on icy/snowy roads.
#1: Reduce your speed! Even with a 4WD or snow tires, everyone can lose control of their own car.
#2: Go easy on the brakes! Braking too hard can cause your wheels to lose traction from the icy road. Try to ease into a brake as best to your ability.
#3: Turn into a slide:I hope this does not occur, but in the case that you do end up sliding, turn your wheels in the direction that the rear of your car is sliding.
#4: Don't stop for accidents or stranded vehicles along an icy roadway: Being a Good Samaritan is a noble thing, but on an icy road, it can cause more problems than it solves. Parking on the side of an icy highway can cause passing drivers to brake and lose control, putting the lives of everyone involved in danger. Unless the stranded driver is in immediate danger, the best thing you can do is contact the authorities (call 911), who are equipped to safely block the road or divert traffic while a tow truck can do the job properly.
#5: Avoid hills or other dangerous roads during icy conditions: The laws of physics are unforgiving! If you attempt to tackle a steep enough incline, there is nothing you can do to stop gravity from taking its toll.
I hope these tips will prevent any future accidents on the road. Thanks for reading(:
February 24, 2015
At North Bethesda Dental Design, along with providing extremely competent dental services, we also have great interest in connecting with our patients! We hope you have a laugh or two while reading these interesting facts (:
1) The average human produces 25,000 quarts of saliva in a lifetime. To put that in perspective, that's enough to fill up 2 swimming pools!
2) You should not keep your toothbrush near a toilet. The airborne particles from the flush can travel up to a distance of 6 feet. Grossss!
3) People who drink 3 or more glasses of soda each day have 62% more tooth decay, fillings and tooth loss than others. Less soda, more water.
4) In 1994, a prison inmate in West Virginia braided dental floss into a rope, scaled the wall and escaped. (We suggest that you use floss to clean between your teeth instead of climbing prison walls! If you don’t you are missing about 35% of your teeth’s surfaces.)
5) You should replace your toothbrush at least every three months, and always after you have an episode of flu, cold or other viral infections. Notorious bacteria can implant themselves on the toothbrush bristles leading to re-infection.
6) Tooth enamel is the hardest substance in the human body. However, we do not recommend that you use your pearly whites to open bottle caps!
7) The standard advice to “see your dentist twice a year” was actually invented by an ad agency for Pepsodent toothpaste! Your dental professional should recommend the correct schedule for your regular dental visits.
A recent poll has shown that health professionals (physicians, dentists and nurses) were among the most trusted people in The United States. The least trusted? Lobbyists and congressmen of course!
9) According to a recent survey done by Time Magazine, 59% of Americans would rather have a dental appointment than be sitting next to someone talking on a cell phone. Maybe some of us should take a hint!
10) Over three out of four people in the United States suffer from some form of gum disease. It is the leading cause of tooth loss in people over age 35. The good news is, in most cases gum disease can be prevented or controlled!
At the North Bethesda Dental Design, we are here to nurture and improve your teeth, and we request to help you achieve the best smile possible. If you have any questions about your dental health or need to schedule an appointment, please give us a call today at 301.881.8866
Source: David M. Dillon