This Week in Perio
May. 29, 2013

Dentists discovered tooth-saving properties of fluoride by accident
In 1901, a dentist named Dr. Fredrick McKay moved to Colorado Springs and noticed what the area's residents called "Colorado brown stain" on patients' teeth. After years of treating patients, McKay figured that the stain must be coming from the water supply they shared. But he also noticed something interesting: People with the brown stains had less tooth decay. In 1930, a chemist with the Aluminum Company of American analyzed the well that the spotted-toothed town drank from and found that the water had high concentrations of fluoride.More

Stop the excuses: Go to the dentist
U.S. News & World Report
Oh, you don't love spending time and money as a stranger picks, buffs, scrapes, fills or pulls your teeth? Join the club. No one says you ought to enjoy dental appointments, but that doesn't mean you should skip them. It's through the mouth that we breathe, eat, communicate and kiss, so it's usually worth 45 minutes of discomfort to keep your mouth healthy. If you're not convinced, we've debunked three popular excuses for skipping appointments.More

Diet soda habit as bad for teeth as meth addiction?
HealthDay News via WebMD
Heavy consumption of diet soda can damage teeth as badly as methamphetamine or crack cocaine, a new study contends. "You look at it side-to-side with 'meth mouth' or 'coke mouth,' it is startling to see the intensity and extent of damage more or less the same," said Dr. Mohamed Bassiouny, a professor of restorative dentistry at the Temple University School of Dentistry in Philadelphia.More

Researchers: Smoking slows healing after gum disease treatment
It’s no secret that smoking is bad for the gums. But the harms of smoking may reach even deeper into the oral bone and prevent healing from gum disease. Researchers have found that smoking interfered with proper oral bone healing after treatments for gum disease. A closer look found that nonsmokers healed better after treatments, but the researchers did not investigate results for former smokers.More

'Bioteeth' a step closer to becoming clinical reality
Dental Tribune
Researchers at the Dental Institute at King's College London say they're a step closer to growing human teeth in the lab using cells from the individual who would ultimately receive the tooth as a natural implant. Led by professor Paul Sharpe, the research team isolated adult human gingival tissue from dental patients at the institute, grew more of the tissue in the lab and then combined the tissue with mesenchyme cells from mice.More

Interleukin on track to commercialize periodontal disease test
Boston Business Journal
It was a close call for Interleukin Genetics Inc., but the company said it is on track. The Waltham, Mass., diagnostics company received word that its University of Michigan study has been accepted for publication with just a week to go. The study, which showed the value of PST — a genetic test that measures the risk of developing periodontal disease — was the last piece the company needed to be able to move forward. The study showed the test guided better prevention of dental disease and more efficient health delivery.More

Implant complication symposium eases minds in San Francisco
More than 400 dental professionals filled a large auditorium at the Westin St. Francis hotel recently for a continuing education course on implant complication management hosted by Straumann. The event was a follow-on to a similar CE course Straumann held last year. Throughout the day, the conversation among practitioners often returned to the fact that, when it comes to implants, one learns more from mistakes than successes, and that the opportunity to learn about others' mistakes compelled them to attend. (May require free registration to view article.)More

Guidelines issued to prevent infection with dental work
HealthDay News
Practitioners might consider discontinuing prophylactic antibiotics for patients with prosthetic implants undergoing dental procedures, and these patients should be encouraged to maintain appropriate oral hygiene, according to clinical practice guidelines approved by the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons.More

Fluoroscopy offers continuous X-rays with less radiation
Fluoroscopy — a diagnostic tool that captures and displays a continuous X-ray image in real time — has been a standard in the medical field for more than 100 years, currently holding a 35 percent share of the medical imaging market. But its adoption in dentistry has been limited by factors related to size, image resolution, and radiation concerns, according to Daniel Uzbelger Feldman, DMD, a member of the faculty at the Temple University Kornberg School of Dentistry and a practicing dentist in Cleveland. (May require free registration to view article.)More

Flossing and proper oral hygiene
Dental Health Magazine
When it comes to taking care of your teeth, most people will be stuck in the loop of brushing your teeth twice a day. While this is a great place to start, it really does not fulfill all the requirements that you should be taking care of.More

A new tool in the fight against peri-implant disease
Surgical Restorative
Peri-implant disease has been defined as an inflammatory process affecting the hard and/or soft tissues surrounding an implant in function. Peri-implant diseases can be broken down further into two entities: peri-implant mucositis and peri-implantitis.More

Is it time to retire the free gingival graft procedure in light of new alternative tissue grafting materials?
Surgical Restorative
The free gingival graft is a surgical procedure frequently used in periodontics to increase the amount of keratinized tissue surrounding a tooth or a dental implant. Keratinized tissue plays a major role (around teeth and dental implants), helping to maintain and facilitate oral hygiene. This surgical technique was introduced almost 50 years ago in 1966.More

For the 4th time since 1956, Portland voters reject fluoridation
The Oregonian
Fluoride supporters, it appeared, had everything going for them. Five Portland, Ore., city commissioners had voted to add fluoride to the city water supply. Health advocacy groups, and many of the city's communities of color, lined up behind the cause. And proponents outraised opponents 3-to-1. But none of that was enough. For the fourth time since 1956, Portlanders rejected a plan to fluoridate city water, 60 percent to 40 percent.More

Colorado OKs more dental care for Medicaid patients
Colorado lawmakers have approved new measures aimed at improving oral health for adults and children. The legislators pointed to the potential for significant cost savings in addressing prevention, according to the Children's Dental Health Project. (May require free registration to view article.)More

California governor says no to adult dental Medi-Cal benefits
Citing California's improving budget outlook, dental care advocates have been urging Gov. Jerry Brown to use unexpectedly higher tax revenues to reinstate dental benefits for adult beneficiaries of Medi-Cal, the state's Medicaid program. But in announcing his revised 2013-2014 state budget, the governor refused to restore adult dental services, despite 100 percent matching federal funds that will be available for people who will be newly eligible for Medi-Cal under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. (May require free registration to view article.)More

Living in a radioactive world: How can the dental team minimize patients' exposure?
Inside Dental Assisting
Despite public concern about medical/dental radiation exposure, the American Nuclear Society website makes it clear that humans live in a radioactive world in which they receive exposure from many sources "from materials in the earth itself, from naturally occurring radon in the air, from outer space and from inside our own bodies as a result of the food and water we consume."More

Take your gloves seriously
Wearing gloves during clinical procedures is a price we pay for ensuring clinician and patient safety. While cross-contamination is a serious issue, something as seemingly innocuous as gloves has a great potential to create unnecessary stress leading to musculoskeletal damage and injuries.More

'The weather is too nice': How Spain does dental hygiene
One dentist explains how dentistry and dental hygiene works in Spain, where pleasant weather will keep the doors closed at times.More