California Dental Association – Wisdom Teeth

I wanted to write briefly about the California Dental Association and applaud them for their current stance on wisdom teeth and their removal. It is available to the public at Here is an excerpt from the site. “In addition to problematic impacted wisdom teeth, partially erupted wisdom teeth (poking through the gums a little bit) should also be removed. Bits of food and bacteria get trapped in the pockets between the partially erupted tooth and gum, and cause infections and gum disease, not to mention pain. But according to Dr. Robert Boyd, Orthodontist, Periodontist, and Chairman of the Orthodontics Department at University of the Pacific School of Dentistry, the trend today is to leave healthy, stable, wisdom teeth alone, monitoring them over the years to make sure they stay healthy and stable. Dr. Alex McDonald, Oral Surgeon and Director … Read more

Dental Chair – Large Source of Mercury

Mercury is a large component of dental fillings, but it is not believed to pose immediate health risks in that form. When exposed to sulfate-reducing bacteria, however, mercury undergoes a chemical change and becomes methylated, making it a potent, ingestible neurotoxin. While the major source of neurotoxic mercury comes from coal-fired electric power plants, researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago and at Urbana-Champaign say mercury entering drain water from dental clinics and offices is also a source. “We found the highest levels of methyl mercury ever reported in any environmental water sample,” said Karl Rockne, associate professor of environmental engineering at UIC and corresponding author of the study that appeared online March 12 in the journal Environmental Science and Technology. Working with James Drummond, UIC professor of restorative dentistry, Rockne gathered waste water samples in collection tanks generated … Read more

Saving your Wisdom Teeth

As mentioned in a previous post, it has been revealed that scientists in Japan were able to successfully harvest stem cells from wisdom teeth. This has several implications for patients. The first one being that if you have your wisdom teeth removed, it might be wise to save them, or have someone save them for you. This is because in your lifetime it is possible that the stem cells harvested from the wisdom teeth could be of great importance to you. They could possibly cure diseases and other health problems you may have in the future. What needs to be determined now is the best way to isolate and save the cells. It is not clear from the research from the scientists in Japan whether or not removing the wisdom teeth in certain ways can make it more difficult to … Read more

Google and Wisdom Teeth News

I wanted to update you guys on two quick things. The first is that Google just rolled out a new feature to it’s search engine that used to be only available when you used Google Labs Beta. Now when you search, the engine will have other common searches with those keywords appear along with the number of results for that keyword. I think it is an excellent feature. The second piece of news of wisdom teeth stem cells. “Japanese scientists say they have created human stem cells from tissue taken from the discarded wisdom teeth of a 10-year-old girl.” However, the research suggests that it will be at least 5 years before any practical medical applications. Even so dentists are no starting to hold on to stem cells from wisdom teeth. In fact, I have known about this for nearly … Read more

Antibodies Present Mean Healthier Teeth and Gums

Antibodies present in people with good oral health could become the first tool for dental professionals to assess a patient’s probable response to periodontal disease treatments. The antibody is to a protein called HtpG, the bug that makes it is Porphyromonas gingivalis, an important pathogen in periodontal disease. The antibody also has potential as a vaccine candidate, according to Charles Shelburne, assistant research scientist at the U-M School of Dentistry. Researchers discovered that the HtpG antibodies were present in much lower amounts in people with periodontal disease, and in much higher concentrations in those with healthier teeth and gums. Typically, antibodies are elevated in people with disease, because they help fight the disease. “What has been seen in periodontal disease over the last 30-40 years is that patients with periodontal disease have higher levels of antibodies to the bacteria associated … Read more