Archive for November 2015

Proper Oral Hygiene Stressed During The Holidays.

The Manteca (CA) Bulletin (11/27) stated that with extra sugar intake during the holidays, it is important to “practice good oral hygiene in order to maintain good oral health.” A Manteca dentist recommends people “practice good oral hygiene by brushing twice a day for a minimum of 2 minutes and flossing once a day, making sure to clean all surfaces of each tooth.”

Association Between Diabetes, Periodontal Disease Discussed.

New Jersey Local News (11/28, Elmore) spoke to Dr. Keith Libou, chief clinical officer at Delta Dental of New Jersey, about the association between diabetes and periodontal disease. “Diabetes is a chronic disease that increases the risk for many serious health problems including gum disease,” said Dr. Libou. “And if you have gum disease, you may be at greater risk for a chronic health problem like diabetes.” Dr. Libou discussed the role of dentists in early diagnosis of diabetes, noting that Delta Dental of New Jersey is “piloting a program where dentists can perform an in-office blood test for those patients with periodontal disease who are at risk for diabetes.”

More Adults Getting Braces.

The Louisville (KY) Courier-Journal (11/24, Curpier) reports on braces, which the authors says used to be “clumsy affairs” that made you look “like you were trying to swallow a barbed wire fence.” Now, braces “impart status and a sense of being cool.” In addition to improvements, “the number of adults” with braces “keeps going up year by year,” now reaching “nearly half of all newly installed braces.” The reasons are that “one-third of adults are unhappy with their smile,” that braces have improved in terms of ease of installation, time needed, and cost. The article warns that braces increase the need for “good dental hygiene that includes regular dental checkups and common sense, like brushing carefully, flossing, and using a healthy mouthwash.”

Four In Ten Americans Knows Someone Addicted To Opioids, Survey Finds.

The Washington Post (11/24, Bernstein) reports that nearly four in 10 Americans “know someone who has been addicted to prescription painkillers, including 25 percent who say it was a close friend or family member and 2 percent who acknowledge their own addiction, according to a new poll” released today by the Kaiser Family Foundation. The survey also found that 16 percent of people say they know someone who has died from an opioid overdose. The Post adds that by “a margin of 77 percent to 58 percent, those polled say it is easy to get non-prescribed painkillers than say it is easy for people who medically need the drugs to get them.”

        Bloomberg News (11/24, Tozzi) reports that the demographics of those “touched by the crisis skew white, higher-income, college-educated, younger, and male.” According to the article, drug overdoses “are eclipsing car crashes as a leading cause of accidental death for American adults.”

        Drew Altman, president and CEO of the Kaiser Family Foundation, writes on the Wall Street Journal (11/24) “Washington Wire” blog that the broad impact of opioid addiction means the issue will likely gain more political traction.

ADA Provides Tips For Effective Flossing.

HealthDay (11/23) reported that “flossing is an essential part of good dental health,” stating that the American Dental Association recommends flossing daily whether before or after brushing, and flossing children’s teeth “as soon as two teeth touch.”

ADA Recommends Replacing Toothbrush Every Three To Four Months.

The Christian Science Monitor (11/21, Thompson) considered when the appropriate time is to replace eight common household items, including a toothbrush. The article reports that toothbrushes should be replaced every 3-4 months, adding that “according to the American Dental Association, this is more about the state of your bristles than anything else.”

        Test Tube (11/22, Garcia-Vargas) also reports that the ADA recommends replacing toothbrushes often.


Study Finds Association Between Heart-Healthy Diet, Better Overall Dental Health.

Harvard University (MA) (11/19) reports that a study in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society finds an association between eating a heart-healthy diet and better overall dental health, although the research “does not conclusively demonstrate a cause-and-effect relationship.” According to the article, researchers with the Veterans Affairs Dental Longitudinal Study found that men whose food consumption matched the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet “scored 30% lower on a scale that assessed the chance of developing new or repeat root cavities.”


Funds In Flexible Spending Accounts Can Be Used For Eligible Dental Expenses.

Investopedia (11/18, Hawley) explains flexible spending accounts, stating “medical and dental expenses that exceed the benefits provided by medical and dental insurance policies can be paid using funds from the FSA.”

Kid-Friendly Snacks Listed To Promote Oral Health.

The Huffington Post (11/17, Rendón) states that “carbonated drinks, processed snacks and sweet treats can seriously affect a child’s oral health,” recommending alternatives that have less sugar and may help promote oral health. For example, the article recommends children consume raw fresh fruits rather than dried fruits, which may result in sugar adhering “directly to the tooth’s surface.”

Dental Coverage Available Through Federal Marketplace.

Investopedia (11/16, Blokhin) states that dental coverage is available on the Federal marketplace “as part of a health plan or as a standalone dental” plan, adding that obtaining a standalone dental plan, however requires simultaneous enrollment in a health plan.

        In a second article, Investopedia (11/16, Larkin) states that dental coverage typically includes procedures “related to health and wellness.”


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