Archive | December, 2010

One in Four Children Living in California Have not been to a Dentist

I found this new study called “Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Dental Care for Publicly Insured Children” to be quite discouraging which recently appeared in the July issue of the journal Health Affairs.  The study says 25% of children in the state of California (U.S.)  have never seen a dentist. It also goes on to address  disparities which exist across type of insurance coverage, ethnicity, and race. This is not good news as lack of dental care can of course cause children to have to miss school for treatment. The study looks at California kids who are age 11 and under and uses data from the 2005 California Health Interview Survey which contains over 10,000 children. So of course this is slightly dated data that was used. Some highlights on the study include African American and Latino American children with […]

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Poor Dental Health Linked to Atherosclerosis

Previous research has shown that poor dental health and periodontitis have been linked to atherosclerosis, which is a condition where fatty material collects along artery walls. This causes the arteries to become narrower and can lead to cardiovascular problems such as heart attacks, angina (chest pain), and stroke. Researchers in Sweden recently tested the hypotheses that bacteria from the mouth and/or the gut could end up in the atherosclerotic plaque and contribute to the development of cardiovascular disease. The researchers found the number of bacteria in the plaque correlated with the number of white blood cells. This meant that this was a cause of inflammation. The researchers used sequencing methods to determine the composition of the bacteria in the mouth, gut and arterial plaque of 15 patients in both a control and a study group. They observed that bacteria were […]

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The American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons Fails to Use Basic Statistics in Research on Wisdom Teeth

I have previously reported how the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (AAOMS) recently had a press conference on wisdom teeth in Washington, D.C. See http://blog.teethremoval.com/third-molar-multidisciplinary-press-conference/ for more information. Shortly after the press conference they issued a press release available at http://www.aaoms.org/docs/media/third_molars/press_release.pdf which is titled “Conventional Wisdom about Wisdom teeth Confirmed: Evidence Shows Keeping Wisdom teeth May be More Harmful than Previously Thought.” One of the additional key findings listed in this press release  is “Most patients (60 percent) with asymptomatic wisdom teeth prefer extraction to retention.” This finding comes from a recent article in the Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, titled “Most Patients With Asymptomatic, Disease-Free Third Molars Elect Extraction Over Retention as Their Their Preferred Treatment.”  The article is by Brian E. Kinard, BS and Thomas B. Dodson, DMD, MPH.  It appears in the December 2010 […]

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American Medical Association versus American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons

I wanted to alert those who may not know that there is a bit of battle going on right now between the American Medical Association (AMA) and the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (AAOMS). In September 2009, the AMA  published a document in it’s  “Scope of Practice Data Series” on Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons. I have put this document on my website for your convenience at http://www.teethremoval.com/ama_scope_of_practice_data_series_oral_and_maxillofacial_surgeons.pdf In this document the AMA essentially goes after oral and maxillofacial surgeons and calls into question their education, training, and proficiency. One quote from the document is… “The AMA holds patient safety in the highest regard and opposes the practice of medicine by those oral surgeons who have not obtained a medical degree.” Another quote is… “Oral and maxillofacial training programs for dentists simply cannot duplicate the medical education that physicians […]

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Women Who Receive Dental Care Have Lower Heart Disease Risk

A recent article by Sarah Yang at University of California Berkeley suggests that women who receive dental care can reduce their risks of stroke, heart attacks, and other cardiovascular problems. The study was published in the journal Health Economics in September 29, 2010 and examined data from men and women enrolled in the Health and Retirement Study. No link between men and dental care and their chance of cardiovascular events was found in this study. Nearly 7,000 people were in the study ranging from ages of 44 to 88. The data in the Health and Retirement Study followed the same individuals over a period of time and surveyed them every two years with questions such as if they have visited the dentist and if they had experience any anginia (chest pain), stroke, heart attack, or congestive heart failure during the […]

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