Archive | February, 2015

Daily Dental Tip: Your baby’s first dental visit

28 Feb

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The ADA recommends that a child be seen by a dentist as soon as his or her first tooth erupts but at least no later than the first birthday.

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Affordable Dental Health Care for Veterans, Children and Others Should Be a Right (via @RollCall)

28 Feb

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As our national focus remains firmly trained on health care, there remains an important element that has long been overlooked — oral health. Millions of low-income children and adults go each year without seeing a dentist. As many as 1 in 3 Americans do not have dental coverage. One in 4 adults age 65 and older have lost all of their teeth.

Access to dental care is about much more than a nice smile. It’s about rescuing thousands of Americans from unbearable pain and keeping countless more from dealing with the hiring discrimination that comes from having lost half or more of their teeth. It’s about maintaining overall health and self-confidence. It’s about avoiding the increased risk of diabetes, digestive problems and poor birth outcomes that go along with tooth decay. In some very tragic cases, it’s about saving lives.

We remember Deamonte Driver from Prince George’s County, whose early death eight years ago served as a wake-up call to the desperate need for more attention to oral health. Twelve-year-old Deamonte first suffered from a basic, if frustrating, toothache. Deamonte’s mother, as hard as she tried, could not find a dentist who would accept her family’s Medicaid coverage. Without the dental care he needed, bacteria spread to his brain.

Since Deamonte’s death, professional organizations, public health advocates and concerned community members have joined together to strengthen the oral health safety net in Maryland and nationally. Through expanded coverage and increased Medicaid participation among providers, more children have access to a dentist than ever before.

Even with those improvements, tooth decay remains the most common chronic childhood disease, and the accompanying dental pain affects children’s academic performance and quality of life. It results in millions of hours of missed school for our youth, missed work for adults and lost productivity each year. It forces trips to emergency rooms at enormous expense to American taxpayers — and those patients frequently leave with the underlying oral health conditions still untreated.

What is most exciting and most frustrating is that many of these circumstances are entirely preventable with regular access to dental care. As a result, oral health remains one of the best investments we can make in improving overall health. We strongly support the advancements that have been made so far, but there is much more to do.

To start, Congress must act boldly. We are again introducing the Comprehensive Dental Reform Act to increase access to dental care for millions of Americans. Simply put, the groups that need care the most are the least likely to get it. Our bill makes it more likely that those who are underserved will have access to the care they need and deserve.

First, we need a more robust workforce of dental providers to practice in underserved communities. Forty-seven million Americans live in dental health professional shortage areas, where access to care is compromised by an insufficient number of providers. Our bill would expand scholarship and loan repayment opportunities for professionals who commit themselves to working in underserved communities. It would also encourage participation in Medicaid among existing providers.

Source: http://www.rollcall.com/news/affordable_dental_health_care_for_veterans_children_and_others_should_be_a-240405-1.html

Daily Dental Tip: Drink water for oral health benefits

26 Feb

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Drinking plenty of water is an inexpensive, readily available way to rinse your mouth. Water removes leftover particles of food and stimulates saliva production.

School nurses tackle student oral health challenges with support from America’s ToothFairy (via @DentistryIQ)

26 Feb

For National Children’s Dental Health Month, America’s ToothFairy: National Children’s Oral Health Foundation continues its role as a premier provider of engaging oral health activities and programming—this time, for school nurses.

In celebration of National Children’s Dental Health Month and through the National Association of School Nurses network, school nurses can now access a customized website with parent/teacher handouts on oral health, information on the America’s ToothFairy Girl Scout/Boy Scout patch program, and tips for dental care referrals. It also contains links to information on school sealant programs, one of the most effective strategies for preventing childhood tooth decay.

Additionally, 250 school nurses will receive the ToothFairy 101 Community Education Kit. Developed with guidance from the America’s ToothFairy Scientific Advisory Board, the ToothFairy 101 Community Education Kit is a comprehensive tool for improving oral health literacy through community outreach activities. The kit’s content covers nutrition, germ transmission and prevention, mouth safety, tobacco, and infant care, as well as basic preventive strategies. Nurses will use the kits directly with students or train teachers or other staff to use them in their classrooms. Together with brightly colored magnets, a giant toothbrush, and visually engaging materials, lessons resonate with younger and older students alike. With data gathered from this initial pilot project with 250 school nurses, the hope is to extend the availability of the kit to school nurses nationwide.

“As the leader in advocacy for student health and professional development of school nurses, National Association of School Nurses shares a common goal with America’s ToothFairy – to promote oral and systemic health for all children,” said NASN president Carolyn Duff, MS, RN, NCSN. “This collaboration with America’s ToothFairy is further expanding the ability of school nurses to protect and maintain children’s health.”

“Realizing the critical role of school nurses on school campuses across the country, we are pleased to provide nurses compelling, science-based educational resources and activities to help engage and instruct the students they care for every day,” said Fern Ingber, America’s ToothFairy president and CEO. “With their support, will we be able to keep the importance of children’s oral health at the forefront of school and government officials, while ensuring students can access the care and education they need for health, learning, and success.”

Source: http://www.dentistryiq.com/articles/2015/02/school-nurses-tackle-student-oral-health-challenges-with-support-from-america-s-toothfairy.html

Daily Dental Tip: For Patients with Diabtetes

26 Feb

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Reminder: good blood glucose control can help prevent mouth problems.

How Your Oral Health Reveals Your Body’s Health (via @epochtimes)

26 Feb

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It’s been said that the eyes are the windows to the soul. I’m not too sure about that, but I am sure that the mouth is one of the mirrors of the body. Stop and think… what exactly is the mouth?

Well it’s the beginning of your digestive tract and one of the few internal organs you can see. Because it’s so sensitive to imbalances in the body, changes can be seen in the mouth long before they are affecting the rest of the body.

What’s the connection?

  • Charles Mayo noted, over 90 years ago, that people who keep their teeth live an average of ten years longer than people who do not.
  • In the surgeon general’s report, Donna Shalala, said in her address of 2000: “The terms oral health and general health should not be interpreted as separate entities. Oral health is integral to general health; this report provides important reminders that oral health means more than healthy teeth and that you cannot be healthy without oral health”.
  • At the University of Alabama, researcher Marjorie Jeffcoat recently discovered that among 120 women in rural Alabama, those with dental infections were 3 times more likely to have premature, low-birth weight babies than women with healthy teeth and gums. Why would that be?

Gum Disease

Over 45% of adults have gum disease but what does it really mean? (hint it’s not about brushing) almost everyone reading this has been to a hygienist and at some point was told that you needed to brush better because you are still getting plaque build up.

You can brush forever and that won’t change anything because it’s more about your body’s acid/base balance being off rather then brushing.

When your mouth is too acidic, the minerals in the saliva precipitate out and that’s the beginning of plaque formation. The bad bacteria are now growing in greater numbers because the mouth’s environment favors bad bacteria and they are growing under the plaque and producing toxins that are going to the rest of your body.

Ok so I have bleeding or puffy gums so what!

…It’s more then so what.

Periodontal Disease Affects More Then Just Your Mouth.

Proper dental hygiene is not just brushing…it’s about your diet. Anyone wishing to prove this can do a simple experiment…Check with your dentist about keeping your mouth clean and set up visits with your hygienist every week…at the same time limit your diet to eating fast foods. Within a few months you will get gum disease even though your mouth would be considered spotless.

  • An article in Science Daily (Dec. 20, 2008) shows proper dental hygiene should reduce the risk of atherosclerosis, stroke and heart disease independently of other measures, such as managing cholesterol.
  • Arnin Grau, M.D., of the Department of Neurology at the University of Heidelberg, Germany discovered that poor dental status resulting from chronic dental and bone infection was associated with a stroke increase of two and one-half times over patients without periodontal disease. “In stroke cases, only the dental factor is causative and significant.”
  • In yet another study conducted at the University of Buffalo, researchers surveyed the health history of 9,982 people from 25 to 75 and found that the 35% with severe gum disease were twice as likely to have a stroke. Why should this happen from gum Disease?
  • According to the American Diabetes Association, over 20 million Americans have Diabetes. About one third of those who have the disease are unaware they have it and only one half of those diagnosed have it under control). Diabetes is developing at an unprecedented rate in our country and millions of people are not aware of their condition. According to the American Academy of Periodontology, the link between diabetics and periodontal disease means that diabetics have double the rate of periodontal disease than the non-diabetic population. A study from Japan concluded that treatment of periodontal disease may reduce the development of diabetes.
  • Men with gum disease have a 63% higher risk of developing pancreatic cancer, according to US researchers. Released in January 2007, the Harvard-based study suggests mouth bacteria, and the body’s attempt to fight them, may produce carcinogenic chemicals that trigger disease.

If you think of periodontal disease as one of the first stages of nutritional deficiencies it starts to make sense. You see, what we are dealing with is not poor brushing but problems that may be the result of the following:

  • Not getting the proper nutrients in your diet, resulting in an acidic environment in the mouth.
  • Not properly absorbing nutrients.
  • Excessive stress which can cause a rapid depletion of the body’s minerals
  • Hormonal imbalances. If the imbalance is due to an illness, some glands may not be functioning properly, mineral deficiencies can be the result.

So now we know it’s not just your teeth that are at risk.

What’s the Answer?

Well what if we were to think of periodontal disease not as a disease but as a symptom of the body being out of balance nutritionally?

When being treated for periodontal disease, make sure you do a diet analysis. Patients also fill out a symptom survey form which can be found on my website http://natdent.com. One of the first things to do is to make sure you are alkaline.

Here Is a Simple Way to Insure You Are Not Acidic:

LemonsLemons have many valuable healing properties, some having not yet been fully recognized. Lemons are good for getting rid of shingles, and for healing gall stones, being high in Vit C. Lemons are beneficial for the skin, reduce fat and dissolve certain waste particles in the blood stream.

Lemons tend to remove toxins from your system, as well as reduce any radiation that might be present in the body. If you have had chemotherapy or radiation, this lemon remedy can be helpful.

This should be mixed with a liter of warm water (size: average seltzer bottle)

Day 1 – one lemon

Day 2 – 1 1/2 lemons

Day 3 – 2 lemons

Day 4 – 2 1/2 lemons

Keep increasing the amount of lemons by ½ each day until you reach 5 lemons a day this will push the body into an alkaline state.

5 lemons a day is a reasonable amount for smaller people and children. You can go up to 20 lemons a day. Just remember to rinse your mouth with water after taking lemons because they have an acidic effect in the mouth. You can add stevia… adjust to your taste.

You do not have to drink the lemon juice all at once. You can make it and keep some in the refrigerator and drink some throughout the day

After consuming the lemon drink make sure you rinse your mouth with water every time you drink this since lemons can affect your tooth enamel over time.

Source: http://www.theepochtimes.com/n3/1263441-how-your-oral-health-reveals-your-bodys-health/

Once you have achieved your high goal start decreasing the lemons by ½ a day till you get to zero. A diet high in greens will also help heal or prevent periodontal problems.

The fact is you don’t get tooth decay (infections) if your mouth is healthy. A healthy mouth means good nutrition.

Daily Dental Tip: Be a role model for your kids

24 Feb

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Make sure you are a role model and show children habits you want them to learn. If you brush and floss daily, in front of your children, then they become more receptive to follow you. You can even make it a family affair.