Posts Under Health and Safety

Patients Advised To Consult With A Dentist Prior To Any Tooth Whitening Regimen.

The New York Observer (7/12, Silver) discusses how to achieve and maintain white teeth. The article emphasizes preventive dental care and drinking plenty of water to maintain white teeth, noting that coffee, red wine, and tobacco products may stain teeth. The article states that “Not everyone is a good candidate for teeth whitening,” and also mentions that professional whitening is not effective on crowns and fillings. If a dentist does determine a person is a candidate for teeth whitening, the article encourages the patient to discuss what shade may be achieved from treatment.

        The University Herald (7/11, Valencia) reported that DIY teeth whitening methods “might have negative impacts.” Lemon juice in some DIY treatments, for example, may erode enamel “due to its acidic property.” The article adds that dental experts advise consulting with a dentist when considering teeth whitening.

        MouthHealthy.org provides additional information for patients on teeth whitening. ADA.org provides a Statement on the Safety and Effectiveness of Tooth Whitening Products. In addition, several whitening toothpastes and a whitening product have the ADA Seal of Acceptance.

Study: Compared To ‘80s, Obese Adults Have Worse Heart Health, Higher T2D Risk.

Reuters (7/13, Seaman) reports that new research suggests “obese adults in the US have worse heart health and a higher risk of type 2 diabetes today than in the late 1980s.” The findings were published online in the Journal of the American Heart Association. Investigators looked at “data collected from 18,626 obese adults between 1988 and 2014 through the annual National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.”

        HealthDay (7/13, Reinberg) reports that although “blood pressure and cholesterol levels stayed relatively stable among obese adults, poor control of blood sugar led to a 37 percent increase in heart disease risk factors between 1988 and 2014.” Also during that time, “rates of diabetes rose from 11 percent to 19 percent, which was due to increases in blood sugar, the researchers said.” Meanwhile, the “rate of obese adults” with diabetes, high cholesterol and hypertension “rose 37 percent – to nearly one in four...said” one of the researchers.

Chewing Sugar-Free Gum May Contribute To Oral Health.

In article titled, “This $1 Habit Could Save You Hundreds In Dental Bills,” Men’s Health (7/9, Brabaw) stated chewing sugar-free gum is “a simple (and incredibly cheap!) trick” to help promote oral health and reduce dental costs. “Anything we can do to reduce the amount of acid and bacteria in your mouth will help prevent tooth decay,” said Dr. Matthew Messina, a spokesperson for the American Dental Association. “And that means less dental work over time.” According to the article, chewing gum increases saliva production, which helps remove food and neutralizes acids that wear away at enamel. Dr. Messina recommends chewing sugar-free gum after eating for at least 20 minutes, adding that gum does not replace brushing and flossing. “There’s no better way to take care of your teeth than the usual brushing, flossing, and occasional check in with your dentist,” said Dr. Messina.

        MouthHealthy.org provides additional information on chewing gum to prevent dental caries. The ADA also provides a list of sugar-free gum with the ADA Seal of Acceptance.

Americans’ Eating Habits Improving, Study Finds.

The San Diego Union-Tribune (7/14, Atencio, Wheaton) reports a new study from the Journal of the American Medical Association analyzing food diaries from the National Center for Health Statistics for 1999-2000 and 2011-2012 has found that “the average American diet is gradually improving.” Based on a healthy diet index, Americans’ “overall score increased to 21.2, an improvement from 19 in the previous study.” Notably, there was a decrease in consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages and an increase in consumption of whole grains and nuts, legumes, and seeds.

Hormones May Affect A Woman’s Dental Health.

HealthDay (7/26, Kohnle) states that a woman’s hormones may affect her oral health. Hormonal changes during puberty, menstruation, and pregnancy, for example, may be associated with bleeding and swelling of the gums. The article recommends regular brushing, flossing, and dental visits to help ensure oral health.

        MouthHealthy.org provides additional information for patients on women’s hormones and dental health.

Evidence Indicates Children Strongly Benefit From Sealants.

The ADA News (7/25, Manchir) reports that the August edition of The Journal of the American Dental Association contains “a systematic review” of the use of sealants as well as “clinical practice guidelines” that have been updated as a result of that review, which indicate the benefit of using sealants to prevent and manage occlusal caries in children and adolescents. “The guidelines show that sealants are more effective in managing pit and fissure caries than fluoride treatments, such as varnish,” said the article’s lead author, Dr. John Timothy Wright. “They also show that benefits are obtained by the variety of materials currently marketed in the United States for sealant use (e.g. resin based materials, glass ionomer materials, polyacid-modified resin, and resin-modified glass ionomers).” According to the article, the analysis indicated that “children treated with sealants have about a 70 to 80 percent reduction in the incidence of occlusal caries compared with children that do not receive sealants.”

        The ADA Catalog offers three illustrated handouts to help explain sealant benefits to patients: the brochure “Dental Sealants: Protecting Teeth, Preventing Decay,” (W291); the mini-brochure “Seal Out Decay” (W191); and the “Sealants Quick Reference,” a two-sided card (W276).

        MouthHealthy.org provides additional information on sealants.

Evidence Indicates Children Strongly Benefit From Sealants.

The ADA News (7/25, Manchir) reports that the August edition of The Journal of the American Dental Association contains “a systematic review” of the use of sealants as well as “clinical practice guidelines” that have been updated as a result of that review, which indicate the benefit of using sealants to prevent and manage occlusal caries in children and adolescents. “The guidelines show that sealants are more effective in managing pit and fissure caries than fluoride treatments, such as varnish,” said the article’s lead author, Dr. John Timothy Wright. “They also show that benefits are obtained by the variety of materials currently marketed in the United States for sealant use (e.g. resin based materials, glass ionomer materials, polyacid-modified resin, and resin-modified glass ionomers).” According to the article, the analysis indicated that “children treated with sealants have about a 70 to 80 percent reduction in the incidence of occlusal caries compared with children that do not receive sealants.”

        The ADA Catalog offers three illustrated handouts to help explain sealant benefits to patients: the brochure “Dental Sealants: Protecting Teeth, Preventing Decay,” (W291); the mini-brochure “Seal Out Decay” (W191); and the “Sealants Quick Reference,” a two-sided card (W276).

        MouthHealthy.org provides additional information on sealants.

Patients Advised To Consult With A Dentist Prior To Any Tooth Whitening Regimen.

The New York Observer (7/12, Silver) discusses how to achieve and maintain white teeth. The article emphasizes preventive dental care and drinking plenty of water to maintain white teeth, noting that coffee, red wine, and tobacco products may stain teeth. The article states that “Not everyone is a good candidate for teeth whitening,” and also mentions that professional whitening is not effective on crowns and fillings. If a dentist does determine a person is a candidate for teeth whitening, the article encourages the patient to discuss what shade may be achieved from treatment.

        The University Herald (7/11, Valencia) reported that DIY teeth whitening methods “might have negative impacts.” Lemon juice in some DIY treatments, for example, may erode enamel “due to its acidic property.” The article adds that dental experts advise consulting with a dentist when considering teeth whitening.

        MouthHealthy.org provides additional information for patients on teeth whitening. ADA.org provides a Statement on the Safety and Effectiveness of Tooth Whitening Products. In addition, several whitening toothpastes and a whitening product have the ADA Seal of Acceptance.

Young Teens Consuming Sports Drinks For “Social Reasons,” Study Finds.

BBC News (UK) (6/27) reports that “89% of Welsh 12 to 14-year-olds” consume high-sugar sports drinks, with 68% consuming these drinks “at least once a week,” according to research from the Cardiff University School of Dentistry. The researchers said many parents and children are unaware these drinks are not suitable for children. Maria Morgan, senior lecturer in dental public health, said, “The purpose of sports drinks are being misunderstood and this study clearly shows evidence of high school age children being attracted to these high sugar and low pH level drinks, leading to an increased risk of dental cavities, enamel erosion and obesity.”

        The Daily Mail (6/27, Spencer) reports the researchers found about half of the teenagers are consuming these drinks for “social reasons” rather than performance-enhancing results. “If consumed socially and in large quantities, sports drinks can lead to serious problems, such as obesity, diabetes, heart disease and gout, as well as poor oral health,” the researchers said. “Non-athletes are consuming these drinks simply because of their nice taste.”

        In a release on EurekAlert (6/27), Cardiff University also announces the findings, which are published in the British Dental Journal.

        MouthHealthy.org provides additional information on foods that affect dental health, and includes sports drinks in its list of the “Top 9 Foods That Damage Your Teeth.”

Man Alerted To Heart Condition During Dentist Visit.

KYW-TV Philadelphia (6/15, Hoff) reported on its website and during a broadcast that a South Jersey native, now 25, credits a New Jersey dentist with saving his life. Alex Kasprowitz has hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, a potentially life threatening heart condition, which had gone undiagnosed until his dentist checked his blood pressure and pulse, discovering his heart rate was at 35. The dental staff “urged immediate medical attention,” and Kasprowitz has since been “equipped with a pacemaker and a defibrillator.”

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