This Week in Perio
Oct. 17, 2012

Virginia to pay family $100,000 in VCU sedation death
The state of Virginia has agreed to pay the family of a Henrico County boy who died shortly after a dental procedure at VCU $100,000. Six-year-old Jacobi Hill went into cardiac arrest at the VCU School of Dentistry and was rushed to the hospital in May of 2010. His mother has never been able to reconcile what happened. "I want to know what happened to my child. I need answers," said Crystal Lewis. Jacobi Hill had asthma, but no other known health problems when he was taken to VCU's dental clinic for a procedure.More

Where you live may determine what lives inside your mouth
Lately, we've been learning more and more about the teeming masses of bacteria inside our bodies — essentially trillions of tiny organisms that make us sick and keep us healthy. Now two scientists at the University of Colorado have dared to ask what kinds of bacteria lives inside our mouths. And they're finding some pretty surprising things in there.More

Seattle Times editorial: Dental therapists could help people get care needed in Washington state
The Seattle Times
A new kind of dental provider could introduce flexibility and cost-efficiency to oral healthcare that nurse practitioners and physician assistants have brought to healthcare, writes guest columnist Alex Narváez.More

Study: Kissing your dog leads to gum disease
Is there dog bacteria growing in your mouth? Maybe... if you kiss your dog — even occasionally. A Japanese study found that dog owners and their pets swap oral bacteria, which causes gum disease.More

Your health: Chew over dental care
Brushing? Check. Flossing? Check. Twice-yearly cleanings? Check and check. You may think you have good oral health in the bag, but a recent Whole Living article may make you think again, says The Washington Post. The magazine takes a look at holistic dentists, practitioners who view the mouth as "a barometer of the body's overall health." Holistic dentists treat all the usual problems, but they also look at inflamed gums and infected teeth as part of broader health problems, and they prescribe healthful diet, sleep and exercise alongside mercury-free fillings.More

South Carolina legislator calls for routine dental office inspections
A South Carolina lawmaker says the state should consider routine inspections of dental offices, as is done in 15 other states. But another legislator who's also a dentist questions the need for such inspections, saying several state agencies already oversee the facilities and respond to complaints. State Sen. Harvey Peeler, who heads the state's Medical Affairs Committee, recently said the Legislature should consider the idea of routine inspections that could be expanded to medical offices. (May require free registration to view article.)More

Oral health tips for making you look younger
Dental Health Magazine
Taking care of the skin on your face by using anti-wrinkle creams is not the only method to keep your looks young and fresh. If you manage to keep your teeth pearly white, and make those wrinkles around the mouth go away, you can look even up to five or seven years younger. People with crooked, misaligned or badly stained teeth can look very old, even if they are in their blooming years of life. A beautiful smile is your most important show-off, so make sure to respect a healthy oral health regimen and those regular checkups and teeth maintenance procedures.More

AAP honors achievements in periodontics
The American Academy of Periodontology awarded excellence in periodontology among members at the association's 98th annual meeting in Los Angeles. "It is a great privilege to recognize my colleagues' valuable achievements in periodontics," said AAP President Dr. Nancy Newhouse. "The advancements made by these talented individuals help members of the AAP and fellow periodontists around the world treat patients more effectively and efficiently I hope their work inspires other dental professionals to contribute to the field of periodontics."More

5 ways to save money on dental care
Dr. Jerry Gordon writes, "Concerned about the cost of dental care? Here are a few tips from an expert to help you fit your teeth into your budget." More

Oral care fights health risks
The Leavenworth Times
Q: There is new research all the time that links a person's health to their oral health, especially regarding heart disease and risk of stroke. How do these factors connect to each other?
A: Multiple studies have proposed an association of periodontal disease and both cardiovascular disease and stroke due to the inflammation and bleeding seen in patients with gum disease. Bleeding gums allow bacteria to enter the blood stream even when the teeth are not being brushed. Many researchers have found links between the disease(s), but direct cause and effect relationship(s) have not yet been proven.More

Building patient loyalty and revenue with an updated patient survey
The dental industry has endured many changes over the last decade. One major change is the increasing tendency by patients to review their dentists on various online sites, such as Yelp and Google. Though a patient's desire to share his or her opinion may be nothing new, the widely diverse means by which he or she can share opinions is very new to dentistry. Unfortunately, this is risky business for dental practices, as negative reviews posted on third-party sites can go unnoticed or unresolved and frequently extend out of a practice's control.More

Now is the time for mini dental implants
A recent histology study from Loma Linda University demonstrated the successful osseointegration of mini dental implants after three months. This success rate is not news to those of us who have been placing mini dental implants for many years, but for practitioners looking for data regarding the long-term efficacy of mini dental implants, this recent study offers support. Given the aging demographics of our society and the ongoing demand for dentures, general practitioners can no longer postpone adoption of this evolution in treatment. Mini dental implants provide a treatment option that is both patient-friendly and an economic boost to the dental practice. (May require free registration to view article.)More

Amazing advances in dental technology in digital age
The Community Voice
Dr. George Malkemus writes, "Dental materials and technology, as well as patient comfort, have advanced rapidly over the last 25 years. When I began practicing, silver-mercury amalgam fillings were the norm. Gloves were used only for surgery. Extractions and dentures were the common treatment. All billing, appointment scheduling and treatment records were hand written or typed. Computers, cellphones and microwaves were unknown in homes and the dental office. It doesn't seem possible; things have changed so quickly."More