Tag Archives | cavity

Are Dentists Ethical or Scam Artists?

Recently The Journal of the American Dental Association has been running some “Ethical Moments” regarding dentists. This is purely propaganda and should not be taken at face value. For example Jeffrey C. Esterburg wrote an article titled Are Dentists Losing Their Status as Professionals? (J Am Dent Assoc, 2011; 142, 1084-1085). He opens up the article saying “As a new dentist, I am becoming increasingly concerned that what it means to be a dental professional is being lost in the eyes of the public and our vendors and consultants.” He goes on to discuss some conflicting pressures he is faced with running his dental practice. He then goes on to discuss the American Dental Association Principles of Ethics and Code of Professional Conduct. He closes the article by saying “The size of our hearts defines our success much more than does the size of our practices, homes or bank accounts. That is what sets us apart from the trades. Go ahead and tell anyone you wish.” In another article by  Rod B. Wentworth titled “What are the Ethical Issues I Need to Consider When Developing Marketing Strategies for My Practice” ( J Am Dent Assoc, 2011; 142; 966-967) He ends the article by saying “Marketing is an important part of all business […]

Continue Reading 2

Dental Care in Japan

I found an interesting piece by Kevin Rafferty in The Japan Times Online from June 15, 2011, titled “A dentist need not be a masked demon.” The article is located here http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/eo20110615a1.html The article gives an inside look into recent developments in dentistry with a particular focus on Japan but the principals and message apply globally. The main focus on the article centers around a report soon to be published in both English and Japanese titled “Guideline for treating caries following a minimal intervention policy, an evidence and consensus based study.” The report was conducted by Mikako Hayashi of Osaka University Graduate School of Dentistry and her committee in which 18 months was spent conducting research. Some notabled quotes from the article by Kevin Rafferty include “Recent advances in dentistry include recognition that teeth, if properly treated, regularly cleaned and cared for with a healthy diet, have self-healing properties, so that drilling and filling of teeth showing signs of decay should be a last, rather than a first, resort.” Mikako Hayashi adds “…I tell my students to pretend they are feathers when using drills: Be gentle and avoid deep digging…By the same token, deep drilling of teeth and filling with […]

Continue Reading 1

How does Flouride really Protect Teeth from Cavities?

A recent study that appeared in the journal Langmuir looked into the role of fluoride and their protection on teeth. The researchers who published the journal article found the protective shield fluoride forms on teeth is up to 100 times thinner than what was previously thought. It is well known that fluoride is found in toothpaste, mouthwash, and public drinking water in many areas in the world. The use of fluoride of course is to help prevent tooth decay which causes cavities to form. Researchers found the fluorapatite layer created by fluoride on the hard white substance covering teeth’s surface called enamel is only 6 nanometers thick. This layer is very small and over 10 times thinner than what was indicated in any prior studies. Hence the researchers raise questions about how a layer so thin can protect teeth from decay. Hence it is possible that fluoride may have another unrecognized effect on tooth enamel. It is worthy for researchers to explore how fluoride protects teeth from cavities as there is some controversy surrounding the fluoridation of drinking water. Previously I have discussed how large amounts of fluoride consumed can lead to fluorosis in young children. Source: Frank Müller, Christian […]

Continue Reading 0

Genes Linked to Cavities

Two recent papers y researchers at the University of Pittsburgh School of Dental Medicine and their collaborators suggest that specific genetic variations may be linked to higher rates of tooth decay (cavities) and aggressive periodontitis, which is inflammation and infection of the ligaments and bones that support the teeth. Dental cavities have been found to be influenced by individual variations in a gene called beta defensin 1(DEFB1), which plays a key role in the first-line immune response against invading germs. For one of the studies, the researchers analyzed nearly 300 anonymous dental records and accompanying saliva samples from the their dental registry, assigning each case a DMFT score based on the presence of decayed teeth, missing teeth due to caries, and tooth fillings. In addition each case also received a DMFS score, based on decayed teeth, missing teeth, and filled surface of a tooth. Saliva samples contained one of three variants, dubbed G-20A, G-52A and C-44G, of the DEFB1 gene. Individuals who carried a G-20A copy had DMFT and DMFS scores that were five-times higher than for people who had other gene variants. For the second study, saliva samples of 389 people in 55 families were examined to look for […]

Continue Reading 1

Lasers to Detect Tooth Enamel

A group of researchers in Australia and Taiwan led by Wang, Fleming, and their colleagues showed that they could analyze the health of  extracted human teeth using lasers. This is done by measuring how the surface of a tooth responds to laser-generated ultrasound. This allows them to then valuate the mineral content of tooth enamel. Enamel is the hardest and most mineralized substance of the human body which engulfs teeth in a protective layer. Enamel constantly undergoes a cycle of mineral loss and restoration, in which healthy teeth maintain a high mineral content. If the balance between mineral loss and gain is lost, teeth can develop areas of softened enamel which are precursors to cavities and damaged teeth. This research could lead to the ability to assess oral health and predict emerging dental problems, such as tooth decay and cavities before they become severe and require treatment. However, using this technique on teeth alive in humans may still be many years off. What Wang, Fleming, and their colleagues have developed a way to measure the elasticity of tooth enamel by adapting laser ultrasonic surface wave velocity dispersion. This is quite  similar to how engineers evaluate the integrity of metals,  thin […]

Continue Reading 0

Powered by WordPress. Designed by Woo Themes