Posts Under Dental News

Coffee, Tea, Red Wine Among Major Teeth-Staining Culprits.

Yahoo! News provided a list of 15 foods and beverages that can stain teeth, including berries, coffee, tea, red wine, curry, hard candies, tomato sauce, cherry juice, soda, balsamic vinegar, beets, popsicles, sports drinks, grapes, and lemons. According to the article, coffee, tea, and red wine, for example, contain tannins that can contribute to staining and discoloration, and many of the items on the list are also acidic, which can erode the enamel on teeth. “You really want to minimize your teeth’s exposure to acidic foods. The acid will eat away at your teeth,” said Dr. Kim Harms, spokesperson for the American Dental Association. “Make sure you’re brushing twice a day, flossing daily, and using fluoride,” Dr. Harms said. “Fluoride strengthens your teeth against those acid attacks caused by eating.” provides additional information on what causes teeth to change color.

More Adults Receiving Fluoride Treatments To Prevent Caries.

NPR (3/14, Rancano) reports that use of fluoride treatments, a “standard practice for children’s teeth,” is “gaining traction” as an approach to also prevent caries in adults. “Prevention has always been a part of the world of dentistry,” says Richard Valachovick, president of the American Dental Education Association. “What we’re seeing is a generational shift.” The article adds that Dr. John Featherstone, dean of the UCSF School Of Dentistry, is promoting an approach that involves “measuring a person’s risk for caries, or tooth decay,” including “testing the level of bacteria in the mouth, looking at dietary habits, medical conditions, medications, saliva flow and history of tooth decay.” Dr. Featherstone found focusing on caries prevention helped reduce tooth decay in high-risk patients, and he says fluoride treatments can help reverse tooth decay if it is caught early. In addition, Wendell Evans, associate professor of dentistry at the University of Sydney, “recently published a studythat found using these techniques reduced the need for fillings in adults by 30 to 50 percent.”

        Additional information on fluoride is available at

Misuse Of Home Tooth Whitening Products May Cause Dental Issues.

The Sierra Vista (AZ) Herald (3/8, Neff) reports that millions of Americans are purchasing do-it-yourself whitening products, “which topped $1.4 billion in sales last year,” adding that toothpastes and chemical application are among “the most popular over-the-counter whitening products.” The article states that “the misuse of whitening products can result in painful, even long term dental issues,” however, adding that an Arizona dentist “stresses that anyone considering whitening treatments should first see a dentist to evaluate if whitening will aggravate existing dental conditions, if the process will be painful, and if the teeth are suitable for whitening.” The article notes this advice follows the ADA recommendation that patients consult with a dentist before using a bleaching product, particularly for patients with “fillings, crowns, and extremely dark stains.” provides tips on achieving a whiter smile. In addition, several whitening toothpastes and a whitening product have the ADA Seal of Acceptance.

Triggers Of Halitosis Identified.

HealthDay (3/7, Kohnle) notes the American Dental Association states that common triggers of halitosis are oral bacteria feeding on food left in mouth; dry mouth; gum disease; eating food that causes bad breath, such as garlic or onions; smoking; and medical conditions. provides additional information on causes of halitosis and ways to prevent it.

19th Century Dentists Documented Exploding Teeth Cases.

BBC News (UK) (3/2, Morris) reports that several cases of exploding teeth were documented by 19th Century dentists, including Pennsylvania dentist WH Atkinson, who “documented an outbreak of exploding teeth” in the journal The Dental Cosmos. In a 1965 publication, the British Dental Journal also detailed “tales of detonating dentine throughout history.” The article adds that “although there were five or six reported cases in the 19th Century, there has been no documented case of exploding teeth since the 1920s.” Despite several hypotheses for why these cases occurred, no evidence exists supporting the explanations. The article concludes, “So either an unknown process was causing the explosions or the patients were exaggerating symptoms which were far more mundane.”

Periodontal Disease Warned Against.

Kaieteur News (GUY) (2/20, Fagu) reported the number one cause of tooth loss in adults is gum disease, according to the ADA. In addition, “three out of four persons will experience some form of gum disease in their lifetime and the disease can affect anyone at any age.” The article listed the warning signs and symptoms of periodontal disease, and highlighted plaque as the “main cause of gum disease.”

Calgary Study Finds Fluoridation Cessation Has Negative Impact On Dental Health.

The Globe and Mail (CAN) (2/17) reports that a study published Wednesday in the journal Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology suggests the City of Calgary’s decision in 2011 to stop community water fluoridation has negatively impacted children’s dental health in the city. The study found that “Calgary children have more than twice as many cavities as their counterparts in Edmonton, where fluoridation continues.” In addition, researchers “found that Calgary kids have more health issues with their baby teeth than those in the provincial capital.” The study’s lead author, Dr. Lindsay McLaren at the University of Calgary, said, “This study points to the conclusion that tooth decay has worsened following removal of fluoride from drinking water, especially in primary teeth, and it will be important to continue monitoring these trends.”

        MarketWired (CAN) (2/17) hosts a University of Calgary release stating the study examined Grade 2 students in Calgary and Edmonton, finding “the number of tooth surfaces with decay per child increased by 3.8 surfaces in Calgary during the time frame of the study, as compared to only 2.1 in Edmonton.” Steven Patterson, a professor at University of Alberta School of Dentistry, said, “The early effects of fluoridation cessation found in this study support the role of water fluoridation in contributing to improved oral health of children and that it is a public health measure worth maintaining.” provides additional information on community water fluoridation.

Researchers Use Living Cells, Special Gel To Print Human Body Parts.

According to Reuters (2/15, Boggs), researchers at Wake Forest School of Medicine have developed a method of 3D printing which can produce bone, muscle, and cartilage templates which can then be implanted and survive in living tissue. The team said that five months after being implanted in mice, the templates appeared similar to normal human tissue. The findings were published in the journal Nature Biotechnology.

        NBC News (2/15, Fox) reported that researchers “used a combination of living cells and a special gel to print out living human body parts – including ears, muscles and jawbones.” Their “approach mixes live cells with a gel that starts out as a liquid but quickly hardens to the consistency of living tissue, and layers them in with tiny tunnels that serve as passages for nutrients to feed the cells until blood vessels can grow in and do the job naturally.”

        BBC News (UK) (2/16, Gallagher) reports that the process is called the Integrated Tissue and Organ Printing System (ITOP).

        Also providing coverage are the Independent (UK) (2/15, Gallagher), Popular Mechanics (2/15, Herkewitz), Gizmodo (2/15, Dvorsky), the Chicago Tribune (2/15, Graham), and HealthDay (2/15, Norton).

Oral Health Tips Provided In Honor Of National Children’s Dental Health Month.

Noting that February is National Children’s Dental Health Month, several sources discuss the importance of preventive dental care, providing tips to promote oral health. Newswise (2/1) hosted a University of Alabama at Birmingham release stating that National Children’s Dental Health Month is “an opportunity for parents of toddlers, young children or teenagers to explore questions about keeping your child’s teeth clean, your child’s first dental visit or how to protect children’s smiles.”

        In celebration of National Children’s Dental Month, the Patrick Air Force Base (2/1, Jewell) provided several tips to help reduce the risk of tooth decay, recommending parents help their “children develop good brushing and flossing habits,” schedule regular dentist visits, limit snacks, and encourage water consumption in place of soft drinks and power drinks, among other tips.

        In a broadcast on its website, WGEM-TV Quincy, IL (2/1, Williams) shared tips from an Illinois dentist for National Children’s Dental Health Month, recommending children brush their teeth twice a day and floss daily, and that they begin visiting the dentist at an early age for preventive care.

        KAMR-TV Amarillo, TX (2/2) reported on its website and during a broadcast that in honor of National Children’s Dental Health Month, “the New Mexico Department of Health is encouraging parents to help their children develop good oral health and eating habits at an early age.”

        Meanwhile, the Lost Coast Outpost (CA) (2/1) stated that a new campaign in Humboldt County, California will begin in February in honor of National Children’s Dental Health Month. Smile Humboldt aims “to educate the community that while tooth decay is the most common chronic disease found in children, it is largely preventable with regular access to a toothbrush, toothpaste and floss as well as access to important preventive measures like fluoride varnish, dental sealants and fluoridated water.”

        Additional information and resources for National Children’s Dental Health Month are available at

Congolese Boy Recovering After Receiving First Free Facial Reconstruction Surgery.

Reuters (2/1, Goldberg) reports that Dunia Sibomana, an eight-year-old African boy, is recovering after receiving the first of a series of surgeries at Stony Brook Children’s Hospital to reconstruct both of his lips, which were ripped off two years ago when a group of chimpanzees attacked him in his native Democratic Republic of Congo. Although reconstructing both lips will involve several surgeries over about nine months, following his first surgery on Jan. 11, Dunia is already speaking more clearly, keeping food in his mouth, and no longer drooling constantly.

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