Across the world, more than 500,000 new cases of cancer of the mouth are diagnosed each year. The majority are found too late, causing many people to die within five years. There is little information related to early diagnosis and referral. Although the need for prosthodontics was expected to decline with the promotion of preventive measures, it is actually increasing with the aging population. The highest risk of developing oral cancer is in adults over 40 who use both tobacco and alcohol. The majority of oral, head and neck cancer are initially diagnosed in a late stage, which has a five year prognosis of less than 50 percent. If these tumors are found in their earliest stage, the five year prognosis becomes a very good 95 percent. All dentists are trained to detect these tumors in an early stage. Even … Read more
A new technology that spots tooth decay almost as soon as it’s begun promises to reduce the need for drilling and filling. Drilling is one of the top dental phobias causing many to not to go to the dentist. The new technology may be available five years from now, is based on Raman spectroscopy most commonly used to distinguish between different chemicals by identifying each molecule’s unique fingerprint. It detects decay simply and painlessly by pointing a tiny optical fibre at the tooth to check on its health. A preliminary study at King’s College London, where the technique is being developed, found that chemical changes in the tooth could be detected by analysing how light is scattered when a laser is fired at the tooth. Researchers were able to tell healthy teeth from carious teeth because bacteria, responsible for the … Read more
I found this great photo of an abandoned dentist chair while searching through photos on Flickr. I think this image captures the fear many people feel when visiting the dentist. You may be feeling that something is going to go terribly wrong and that your life may be changed forever. Or you may feel really uncomfortable and want to be doing some other activity. The original URL is http://www.flickr.com/photos/22793898@N04/2191423773/
A new report suggests that the National Health Service (NHS) in Britain is having it’s fair share of problems. Dentists are simply removing teeth rather than taking on complicated treatments because they have become uneconomical to provide. The number of tooth extractions has increased. In the two years following the introduction of a new contract to NHS dentists in April 2006, 900,000 fewer people saw an NHS dentist than in the last two years of the previous system. This could also be an understatement. Why the sudden decline? It seems as if now dentists in the National Health Service are no longer paid on a per patient basis based on the procedure or treatment done. Instead they receive a fee for the year while agreeing to perform a certain number of services. To read the entire article go here.
With the recent Michael Phelps frenzy in the 2008 Summer Olympics a lot of people may have a renewed interest in the sport of swimming. I personally have been actively swimming regularily for the past few years. I recently went on to the American Dental Association (ADA’s website) and took a look at some of their dental minute videos. One such video discusses how swimming more than 6 hours a week can cause your teeth to become brown. Thus swimming chemicals can stain your teeth. This can be managed though with regular dental exams. To view the video by practicing dentist Dr. Maria Lopez Howell go to the following link http://www.ada.org/public/media/videos/minute/additional_swimmingpoolchemicals_broadband.wmv (you will have to download it)