This Week in Perio
Feb. 25, 2015

Periodontal disease most prevalent among ethnic minorities
A new study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirms that nearly 1 out of 2 U.S. adults age 30 and over — 64.7 million Americans — has periodontitis, the advanced form of periodontal disease. The findings, reported in the Journal of Periodontology, also indicate that prevalence is highest among ethnic minorities, with 63.5 percent of Hispanic-Americans, 59.1 percent of Non-Hispanic Blacks and 50 percent of Non-Hispanic Asian Americans affected by periodontitis.More

Virus found in sewage shows promise in treating dental procedure infections
Medical News Today
Bacteriophages - or "phages" - are viruses that infect bacteria. Through a long history of co-evolution with bacteria, they have evolved into highly effective "professional killers" of the bugs. Back in the days when drugs were first developed as a way to treat bacterial infections, scientists were already thinking about using phages to fight bacteria, but then put the idea to one side as antibiotics became successful.More

New insights into human saliva could lead to 1st autism diagnostic test
Dental Tribune International
For the first time, a study has shown that children with autism spectrum disorder have different levels of certain proteins in their saliva from other children. Researchers believe that these findings could help in the development of an autism diagnostic test, which could aid early diagnosis and help direct parents with infants with autism to interventions.More

Rutgers researchers study rare form of gum disease that affects African-American adolescents
Rutgers University via News-Medical.Net
Oral biologist Daniel H. Fine and his team at Rutgers School of Dental Medicine have tracked more than 2,500 Newark children since 2007 to chart the progression of a rare form of gum disease that afflicts African-American adolescents. The disease, called "localized aggressive periodontitis," which has a genetic basis, affects 2 percent of African-American children ages 11 to 17.More

FDA's lack of transparency hurts dentists and their patients
The dental community should be a little more wary of articles detailing clinical trials published in peer-reviewed journals, according to a new review of clinical trials in the Journal of the American Medical Association. The author of the paper discovered that the findings of clinical trials are sometimes published without any note of their scientific misconduct found by the Food and Drug Administration.More

Toothpaste-mouth rinse combo washes out harmful bacteria
A study of mouth microbes finds that antibacterial toothpaste and mouthwash with essential oils work much better in combination than separately to banish bacteria that cause gum disease. Researchers looked at bacteria clinging to wires used in dental retainers that are bonded to the backs of teeth. These retainers are known to host bacterial colonies that promote bleeding and receding gums as well as cavities.More

Thorough dental care helps retain youthful looks
Dental Tribune International
A new study on lifestyle and appearance has linked personal effort in oral hygiene to perception of facial age. The findings suggest that people with good dental routines and overall oral health can appear up to ten years younger. A team of scientists at Unilever and Leiden University in the Netherlands evaluated various lifestyle factors, such as smoking, sun-bathing and oral care, in relation to perceived facial age. More

Tips to improve your collections
The concept is pretty simple. You perform the dentistry, and patients pay you for your services. Yet, many practices struggle with collections and that, of course, is hurting their bottom line. If you want to improve your collections ratio, which should be at 98 percent, you need to establish a clear financial policy and then communicate that policy to both new and existing patients. More

How to reactivate inactive dental patients
Most practices have patients in their database the staff hasn't seen in quite some time. These individuals fall off the schedule for many reasons — their insurance changes, they miss an appointment and never reschedule or they find another dentist. Whatever the reason, these patients represent untapped potential. More

5 reasons people don't open your emails
It's a great idea to stay in close touch with your patients and prospective patients. One of the best ways to do that is a regular email campaign — sending informative content to your people on a very regular basis. Unfortunately, you've probably discovered that not as many people are opening your emails, reading them, and interacting with you as you thought.More