The American Dental Association: Is it Patient-Centered, Science-Based and Ethically-driven?

Some time recently (within the past 6 months) the ADA (American Dental Association) has updated their about me page over at http://www.ada.org/aboutada.aspx. A new video appears and under it the text reads “This American Dental Association video tells our story and highlights how the ADA has always been a patient-centered, science-based and ethically-driven association. It captures the ADA’s spirit and what the ADA strives to be.” Viewing the video the words patient centered, science-based, and ethically-driven are repeated. The video also throws around the terms continuous learning, research and development, patents, and up to date. In one segment a dentist presumably says do no harm, always do good, treat people with fairness and honesty, and respect the doctor patient relationship. Unfortunately I disagree with the ADA’s assertion that they have always been patient-centered, science-based, and ethically-driven. As stated before on … Read more

Dental Amalgam Mercury Poisoning: Why Is It Still an Issue?

This is a guest post written by Harmon Pearson who is currently pursing a post graduate degree in dental science. He  spends time blogging about his pursuits and writing on dental care. When he is not studying, he enjoys restoring antique pendulum timepieces. How is it that in the 21st century we continue to put a known toxic element—mercury—into our mouths?  The question may seem straightforward, but the answer, curiously, is not.  Mercury remains a primary ingredient in dental amalgam, also known as silver fillings.  Other ingredients include copper, silver, tin, and zinc.  These elements when bound with mercury form what’s typically referred to as a stable compound.  It’s hard and resilient to degradation in the mouth environment making it a seemingly ideal compound for replacing small amounts of decayed or removed tooth material.  Because of this, it’s remained a … Read more

American Dental Association’s New Position on Dental Visits

A few months ago the ADA (American Dental Association) released a press release regarding the frequency that patients should be seeing a dentist. This is located over at http://ada.org/8700.aspx. I meant to comment on this earlier, but didn’t get a chance. In a previous blog post earlier this year, located over at http://blog.teethremoval.com/looking-at-the-concept-of-prevention-in-dentistry/I mentioned an article by retired dentist Jay W. Friedman, DDS, MPH. I also provide a quote from the article where he says that semiannual cleanings are unnecessary in some patients. In the risks of keeping wisdom teeth page, when updated in 2011, I added a section discussing dental examination intervals. This was because I had reviewed National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (note NICE was renamed in early 2013), policy over at https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/215663/dh_126005.pdf which states “The actual interval should be a clinical decision by the dentist … Read more

ADA hires Fleishman-Hillard as Public Relations Firm

An article written on February 14, 2013, titled “ADA selects national communications firm“, by Kelly Soderlund discusses how the American Dental Association (ADA) has recently hired Fleishman-Hillard as their public relations (PR) firm. The article states “Fleishman-Hillard will be charged with developing communications strategies and messages; proactively pitching major oral health stories to national media; and creating toolkits and other multimedia materials that dental societies can also use as issues management resources. The goal…is to build and enhance dentists’ reputation and the profession; position the dentist as a fully-trained doctor who leads the dental team; demonstrate dentistry’s leadership in breaking down barriers to oral health for all Americans; and ensure that the media portrays dentistry fairly and accurately.” I am not quite sure what exactly to expect from this PR campaign. The article talks about portraying dentists fairly and accurately and also … Read more

Politics of Dental Anesthesiology

A recent article titled “Dental anesthesiology falls short of becoming ADA specialty,” by Rob Goskowski, Nov. 1, 2012, located at http://www.drbicuspid.com/index.aspx?sec=sup&sub=rst&pag=dis&ItemID=311903, discusses a recent vote that took place at the House of Delegates during the 2012 American Dental Association (ADA) Annual Session. The House of Delegates voted against recognizing Dental anesthesiology as the 10th ADA recognized specialty. Steven Ganzberg, a clinical professor and the chair of dental anesthesiology at UCLA says: “This action by the ADA confirms that the ADA process of specialty approval is fatally flawed….This was clearly an effort by the ADA, through AAOMS [the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons], to restrict professional activities that specialty recognition would have provided.” Dr. Ganzberg and some other supporters were hoping that the specialty would be approved as they felt it would lead to increased training and emergency preparedness … Read more