Budget Shortfalls Lead to Drastic Care Cuts in Scotland

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_358326896.jpgWhen reports surfaced earlier this year that the United Kingdom’s National Health Service (NHS) was facing major budget shortages, many United Kingdom residents who benefit from NHS services were unsure what to expect. With British dentists reportedly turning children away and charitable organizations that normally provide dental care to impoverished communities in Third World countries setting up shop in England to address the dental crisis, it was only a matter of time before shockwaves of the funding cuts hit other areas of the United Kingdom.

Continue reading

Could New App Help Patients Get After-Hours Dental Services?

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_266568947.jpgAccording to a recent report by Daniel Wesley at CreditLoan.com, Americans work more hours than any other workers on Earth. In fact, Wesley claims that 66.5 percent of women and 85.8 percent of men work over 40 hours per week. That doesn’t leave a whole lot of free time - or time to see the dentist. But a new app created by former hedge fund analyst Eva Sadej could soon change that.

Continue reading

What Is the Tide Pods Challenge?

 

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_1012687777.jpgAccording to the Alexandria, Virginia-based American Association of Poison Control Centers (AAPCC), American emergency rooms handled a record 39 cases of poisoning from intentional ingestion of Tide Pod laundry detergent packets among patients between the ages of 13 and 19 in the first week of 2018.

In the first three weeks of the year, that number soared to 86, thanks to what is being called the "Tide Pods challenge," a social media dare that has teens eating the fast-dissolve detergent packs on film and posting the video to YouTube. The problem is, unlike its predecessors like the "cinnamon challenge" (where teens attempted to down mouthfuls of powdered cinnamon to disastrous results) and the "ice bucket challenge," which had people dumping buckets of ice-cold water on their heads to raise money and awareness for Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), the Tide Pods challenge is extremely dangerous. Here’s why you and your teen should definitely skip the trend.

Continue reading

Protect Teeth During Spring Travel

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_208781929.jpgDental emergencies. Chances are, we’ve all had one, or will at some point in life. Whether it’s a loose filling, chipped tooth or painful infection, sometimes even when we think we’re on top of our oral health, these problems can take us off guard. And while it’s bad enough to have a dental emergency on a busy work day or what should have been a relaxing Saturday afternoon, it can be even worse (and scarier!) to have one while vacationing abroad.

This spring, millions of people will travel abroad for spring break, and at least a few of them will experience a dental emergency while vacationing. But a dental emergency doesn’t have to mean cutting your trip of a lifetime short - or risking your life on a questionable provider under less than ideal conditions. If you or someone you love is planning a trip abroad this spring, check out these tips for finding a safe emergency dental provider in a foreign country.

Continue reading

Don’t Be Caught Off Guard By Common Oral Infections

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_520145404.jpgIf you develop an oral sore seemingly out of nowhere, your first reaction may be to totally ignore it - or to completely panic. Either way, there are some things you should know (and some symptoms to look for) before you make your next move. Before you brush it off as nothing, or go into panic mode, check out this guide to some common oral infections that may or may not warrant a trip to the dentist.

Continue reading

Forensic Scientists Find Links Between Teeth, Environment

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_776608750.jpgMany things get stuck in our teeth - caramel, popcorn, spinach - but did you know that for some workers, evidence of their job can get stuck in their teeth, too?

A team of scientists at Gujarat, India’s Gujarat Forensic Sciences University, under the helm of forensic odontology student Dr. Riddhi Thanki, Rajesh Babu and Dr. MS Dahiya, found a connection between the hardened plaque deposits found on teeth and certain environmental factors.

Continue reading

Denti-Cal to Expand in 2018

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_138177026.jpgFor 13.5 million lower-income Californians, the Medi-Cal medical insurance program provides coverage for a number of much-needed medical services these individuals may not otherwise be able to receive. But while many recipients have seen improvements in their medical benefits in recent years, Medi-cal’s dental coverage, Denti-Cal, has until recently lagged far behind. Experts say this is due to the 2009 state budget crisis, which cut dental coverage to Medi-Cal and other programs, and though the state’s budget has rebounded since, Denti-Cal was only partially restored in 2014, and never again.

Continue reading

Don’t Be Afraid to Floss

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_273038321.jpgThere’s no topic discussed at a dental exam that seems to make people more uncomfortable than flossing. As you may already be aware, the American Dental Association (ADA) recommends we floss our teeth at least once a day. This is because string dental floss can reach between the teeth in ways brushing or water flossing cannot. In fact, when you don’t floss, you’re only cleaning about 60 percent of your teeth! That’s right - flossing alone cleans about 40 percent of your teeth’s surfaces.

Continue reading

To Keep or Not to Keep: Wisdom Teeth

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_245617978_20180104-034709_1.jpgIf your child has a mouthful of healthy teeth, it may come as quite a surprise to hear that your dentist wants to remove your child’s wisdom teeth. After all, why would you remove perfectly healthy teeth? But even healthy wisdom teeth can cause big problems if they’re not extracted. Here’s why.

Continue reading

These Vitamins Can Help Oral Health

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_338422418.jpgA trip down the vitamin aisle at your local pharmacy can be an overwhelming experience. With literally hundreds of brands and types of vitamins to choose from, it’s hard to know which one you need to address your specific health needs. Do you go with a generic multi-vitamin? A probiotic? A chewable? And how do you know what dose to take, or if you’re already getting enough of certain vitamins from your diet or other medications?  

The best advice we can give you about vitamins is to speak to your physician about which supplement is best for you, but if you are looking for a vitamin to improve your oral health, here are a few that have proven benefits. Remember: If you’re interested in trying any of these vitamins, speak to Dr. Abelar or your physician to see if they would be a good fit with your lifestyle.

Continue reading

Smile Insecurities Affect Career Aspirations, Study Says

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_125240636.jpgA recent study by the American Dental Association has revealed some startling statistics about millennials and oral health. According to the study, titled "Oral Health and Well-Being in the United States," 29 percent of lower-income individuals and 28 percent of millennials admitted that insecurities about the health and appearance of their teeth have negatively affected their ability to interview for a new job.

"These numbers are very disheartening to hear, given the difficulty younger workers and lower-income workers have experienced entering the work force," says Dr. Martin Abelar, a dentist in San Diego, California. "These are definitely people we should be rooting for in the job market."

Continue reading

New Stem Cell Treatment May Regrow Teeth

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_85060831.jpgIf you’ve ever lost an adult tooth, you already know your options for replacing that tooth are limited. Dentures, partials or bridges give you the look of having a tooth where one is missing, but they aren’t permanent and can still cause a great deal of insecurity to wearers. Dental implants are a more permanent solution, but their high cost can be prohibitive to some budgets, and they do carry a risk of implant failure that can cost the wearer portions of his or her jawbone. But a new procedure under development at Columbia University may provide a solution that patients will really want to sink their teeth into.

Continue reading

Reduce Sensitivity After Whitening Teeth

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_333000893.jpgWhen you come in to the dentist's office for a teeth-whitening procedure, you probably have a few expectations: a whiter smile; a calm, relaxing environment; and an attentive, professional staff. What you may not expect is tooth sensitivity. But many patients experience this side effect during or after a whitening procedure. While for some the pain is manageable and only temporary, for others it can last from several minutes to several days. If you are considering a whitening procedure and either have experienced sensitivity in the past, or would like to reduce your risk of experiencing it in the future, try these tips before you whiten.

Continue reading

Can This Four-Hour Deep Cleaning Cure Gum Disease?

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_608251319.jpgBritish soap opera star Samantha Womack recently made headlines for undergoing a deep-cleaning gum treatment called Bone One Session Treatment, or BOST, that claims to cure periodontal disease in just one session. Womack claims that after one four-hour sitting, her gums were completely cleaned and essentially cured of periodontal disease. But is this possible? Dentist Martin Abelar of San Diego, California, weighs in.

"The BOST procedure consists of gently pulling the gums away from the teeth to reach underneath the gum line and clean out the bacteria that is hiding inside," he says. "The dentist will actually DNA test the bacteria in each pocket and develop a treatment to kill that specific type of bacteria."

Continue reading

Root Canals May Soon Be Enhanced With Nanodiamonds

b2ap3_thumbnail_Untitled-design-12.jpgRoot canals are one of the most feared procedures a dental patient can undergo, but the root canals of today are a far cry from the painful procedures they used to be. Today’s root canals are quicker, less painful and have a higher success rate than procedures performed decades ago. In fact, many of today’s root canal procedures are about as simple and painless as getting a regular filling. Unfortunately, despite their reduced pain and higher success rate, there are still failed procedures - but a team from the UCLA School of Dentistry and UCLA’s Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science have teamed up to try to improve the success rate of the root canal using particles known as nanodiamonds.

Continue reading

What's Keeping Americans From Going to the Dentist?

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_439120735.jpgWhether we like it or not, our smile and the condition of our teeth play a huge role in our self-esteem. In fact, a recent study by the American Dental Association found that nearly 30 percent of young adults are so insecure about their smile that they feel it has interfered with their ability to interview for a job. But just because you’re an adult doesn’t mean it’s too late to do something about your teeth - especially if they aren’t as straight as they could be. Whether you are considering braces for yourself or are wondering whether it’s better to wait for your child to reach adulthood to get braces, here are some common questions and answers about adult braces.

Continue reading

Traveling for Work? Don’t Skip the Oral Health Routine

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_414838231.jpgWith an estimated 488 million business trips taken each year, averaging four nights away each, it’s safe to say that we are a country on the move. But while all that travel can bulk up your air miles account, it could be doing some severe damage to your oral health. Whether you travel for work, or you’re lucky enough to travel for pleasure, there are some things you can (and should!) do to make sure you are taking proper care of your teeth while you’re on the road.

Continue reading

Tips for Choosing the Ideal Toothbrush

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_565436653.jpgIt’s one of the most commonly asked questions in dental practices across the nation: What’s the best toothbrush for me?

Unfortunately, there’s no one right answer. Here are a few things to consider if you find yourself wondering what kind of toothbrush you should be using to maximize your oral hygiene routine.

Continue reading

Could Robots Replace Dentists?

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_631377275.jpgFor some patients in the United States, getting to a dentist poses a real challenge. In fact, according to Pew Charitable Trusts, nearly 50 million Americans have limited access to a dentist due to living in an area with a dentist shortage. So, what can be done to help people get the oral health care they need until there are more dentists to serve these rural areas? A clinic in Xian, Shaanxi, China, may have a solution.

Continue reading

Asthma Sufferers Could Be at Higher Risk of Gum Disease

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_568569448.jpgThe Centers for Disease Control estimates that one in 12 Americans has the lung disease known as asthma. Asthma is categorized as an inflammation or obstruction of the bronchial tubes. This condition can be caused by environmental issues such as exposure to irritants, as well as by genetics.

Continue reading