Posts Under Health and Safety

Regular Dental Visits Advised At Intervals Determined By Dentist

The Huffington Post (1/26, Miller) discusses how frequently people should visit the dentist, noting the American Dental Association states, “Personalized oral care is a necessity for good dental health.” The article adds that the ADA recommends people receive regular dental care at intervals their dentist determines.

Methamphetamine Use Can Cause “Destructive Dental Effects

In an opinion piece for the San Francisco Chronicle (1/14, Subscription Publication), Lola Giusti, DDS, an associate professor at the University of the Pacific’s Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry in San Francisco, discussed the “destructive dental effects” of methamphetamine abuse, stating that “dentists can recognize a distinctive and often severe pattern of decay that seems to spread through a mouth like wildfire.” In addition, Dr. Giusti stated that “the tooth decay meth unleashes is nearly impossible to reverse.” Dr. Giusti said that “the evidence is in” for how methamphetamine use affects dental health, pointing to JADA’s December cover storyexamining dental disease in methamphetamine users. “Researchers began studying the mechanisms behind this rapid dental destruction and found that even a year after quitting meth, the user’s saliva remains acidic,” Dr. Giusti said, adding that “when paired with poor oral hygiene, this biochemical phenomenon exerts a permanent effect on teeth and health.” Dr. Giusti recommended meth users receive help from a support program, and then visit a dentist right away.

        Visit MouthHealthy.org for additional information on “Meth Mouth.”

JADA Study Finds Association Between Sugary Drinks, Erosive Tooth Wear.

PRNewswire (1/25) hosts a release from the American Dental Association stating “new research from The Journal of the American Dental Association (JADA) shows that sugary drinks are associated with erosive tooth wear among teenagers in Mexico.” After providing a food questionnaire to teenagers living in Mexico, the study authors examined the teenagers for “erosive tooth wear,” finding “the overall prevalence of erosive tooth wear was 31.7 percent, with sweet carbonated drinks – soda – causing the most erosion.” JADA editor Michael Glick, D.M.D., said, “The oral health of children is always top of mind, and we’ve seen recently that sugar is a leading problem when it comes to their overall health and dental health.” Glick adds, “This study shows an association between high intake of sweet drinks and poor oral health. This issue needs to be taken seriously.” MouthHealthy.org provides additional information on how nutrition affects children’s teeth.

Science Supporting Health Claims Of Probiotics Is Uncertain, Researchers Say

STAT (1/21, Scudellari) reports that although probiotics are “touted as potential treatments for conditions ranging from inflammatory bowel disease to eczema to tooth decay,” the scientific evidence “does not necessarily support those claims.” According to STAT, “there have been only a few large human trials” and the small-scale studies actually conducted give “no indication that probiotics can treat obesity, autism, diabetes, or high cholesterol,” nor “the flu or common cold.”

Army Regulation Requires Personnel Use Mouthguards To Prevent Injuries

The Fort Leonard Wood (MO) Guidon (1/20, Hauschild) stated, “Tooth loss due to injuries is more common among Soldiers than among members of the other branches of service,” adding that research shows mouthguard use prevents “injuries to the lips, mouth, tongue and teeth.” As a result, “Army regulation 600-63 requires individuals to use mouth guards for military training activities that have been shown to have a high risk of mouth or facial injuries.” The article adds that the American Dental Association and International Academy of Sports Dentistry have also “identified 29 sports and exercise activities for which they highly recommend mouth guards be worn.” Given this, the article describes factors to consider when selecting a mouthguard.

        The ADA News (11/2, Manchir) previously reported that CustMbite MVP Athletic Mouthguard has become the first athletic mouthguard to receive the ADA Seal of Acceptance. The ADA provides additional information on mouthguards online

HPV May Be Linked To Higher Risk Of Head And Neck Cancer.

NBC News (1/21, Fox) reports on its website that research suggests “the human papillomavirus (HPV) raises the chances someone will get head and neck cancer by at least sevenfold and maybe much more.” The findings were published in JAMA Oncology.

        Oncology Nurse Advisor (1/21, Hoffman) reports that the investigators found that “detection of oral human papillomavirus 16 (HPV-16) was associated with an approximately 22 times higher risk for developing oropharyngeal squamous cell carcinoma (SCC).”

        But, Healio (1/21, Kelsall) reports, “this association did not persist for oral cavity squamous cell carcinoma...or for laryngeal squamous cell carcinoma.”

Study: Kids’ Teeth May Be Harmed By Secondhand Smoke Exposure In Infancy

HealthDay (10/22, Reinberg) reports a Japanese study shows “children exposed to secondhand smoke at 4 months of age may be at risk for tooth decay by age 3.” Lead researcher Dr. Koji Kawakami, chairman of pharmacoepidemiology and clinical research management at Kyoto University, said, “Secondhand smoke is one of the major public health problems still unsolved.” The findings were published in the British Medical Journal.

        The Medical Daily (10/22, Cara) reports that “to date, there has been a steady stream of studies finding a moderate to weak connection between early secondhand smoke exposure and later tooth decay, though as the researchers explained, much of this research has involved studying a population at any one given point in time (a cross-sectional study) rather than following a group of people over time (a cohort study).”

        The Guardian (UK) (10/21, Campbell) reports “the research was carried out in Kobe, where at least one person smoked in 55% of the households containing children.”

NIH-Funded Research May Help Cancer Patients Suffering From Xerostomia.

Globe Newswire (10/20) carries a release announcing that physicians and researchers at Allegheny Health Network have developed “a promising gene therapy technique” that may help cancer patients suffering from xerostomia, “a common and debilitating side effect of radiation therapy,” according to a pre-clinical study presented Tuesday at the American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) annual conference. A $1.7 million National Institutes of Health grant supported the project, which “involved the use of an innovative ultrasound procedure, instead of a virus, to facilitate the transfer of therapeutic DNA into cells.”

Globe Newswire (10/20) carries a release announcing that physicians and researchers at Allegheny Health Network have developed “a promising gene therapy technique” that may help cancer patients suffering from xerostomia, “a common and debilitating side effect of radiation therapy,” according to a pre-clinical study presented Tuesday at the American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) annual conference. A $1.7 million National Institutes of Health grant supported the project, which “involved the use of an innovative ultrasound procedure, instead of a virus, to facilitate the transfer of therapeutic DNA into cells.”

Dental Visit Cancer Screenings Advised To Help Early Detection.

In an article for the Huffington Post (10/20, PresantM.d.), Dr. Cary Presant, practicing hematologist and medical oncologist, provides cancer prevention tips, including the recommendation that people have their “dentist check for early evidence of cancer or pre-cancerous changes” in their mouth, gums, and tongue.

Scientists Developing 10-Minute Saliva Test For Cancer

The Telegraph (UK) (2/13, Knapton) reported scientists are developing a test for cancer that takes 10 minutes and uses “just a drop of saliva.” David Wong, a professor of oncology at California State University, says the test is accurate and can be carried out by a dentist, pharmacist, or even taken at home. According to the article, “Professor Wong’s tests have shown that just a single drop of saliva contains enough data to give a definitive diagnosis as soon as a tumour develops.” The new test is set to enter full clinical trials later this year, with FDA approval anticipated within two years. “The advantages of our technology is that it is non-invasive,” Professor Wong said. “If you have a credible early screening risk assessment technology that people can use on their own or at dentists’ office or pharmacists – that’s the key, early detection.”

        The Daily Mail (2/14, Miller) reported that early results show the test as having “near-perfect” accuracy with lung cancer patients, and “eventually it could be used to diagnose a range of different cancers, said Wong, speaking at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Washington DC.”

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