Olympic Athletes Have Great Bodies, Bad Teeth

Olympic Athletes Have Great Bodies, Bad Teeth

Olympic athletes are known for being in tip-top physical shape when it comes to their bodies, but apparently the opposite is true when it comes to their dental health. A 2013 study published in The British Journal of Sports Medicine looked at 278 of the 1,900 athletes who visited the dental clinic for Olympians at the 2012 London Games and found that 55% of them had cavities, 45% had dental erosion, 76% had gingivitis and 15% had serious periodontitis. When questioned, more than 40% of the Olympian patients said they were “bothered” by their oral health, 28% said it affected their quality of life and 18% felt it even had an impact on their training and athletic performance.

(more…)

Are You Ready for Tooth Tattoos?

Dynamic Dental: Are You Ready for Tooth Tattoos?

Just when you thought you’d run out of places on your body to put a tattoo, along comes the latest in dental fashion statements: tooth tattoos. In truth, companies like Connecticut’s Suburban Dental Laboratory and Washington’s Pacific Dental Arts have actually been offering “tatteeth” for up to two decades now, but it’s been gaining notoriety lately with the general public.

As bizarre as it sounds, tooth tattoos offer many advantages over traditional skin tattoos. First, because the design is so much smaller and more basic, the process is a lot quicker. Also speeding up the procedure is the fact that the patient doesn’t have to sit in the dentist’s chair while the design is being drawn. The dentist just makes an impression of the tooth and sends it to an outside company to create the tatted crown. When the patient returns to the office, the dentist just fits the crown over the existing tooth, securing it with dental cement. Because the process is so quick, it’s also less painful that typical tattoos.

(more…)

Woman Dies After Getting 20 Teeth Pulled

In a case that illustrates how easily a dental procedure can turn into a life-or-death situation, a veteran Connecticut dentist has found himself in hot water after a 64-year-old patient of his stopped breathing while having her teeth extracted and later died in a nearby hospital. Judith Gan was having a whopping 20 teeth pulled in one sitting this past February in the Enfield, Connecticut clinic of Dr. Rashmi Patel when her condition took a turn for the worst and tragedy struck.

(more…)

Childhood Tooth Decay Is an “Epidemic”

Childhood Tooth Decay on the Rise

The Tooth Fairy is working as hard as ever these days, as dental experts claim that childhood tooth decay has reached “epidemic” proportions. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 42% of children age 11 and under have had cavities in their baby teeth, while 21% of kids age 6 to 11 have had cavities in their adult (permanent) teeth. The American Dental Association (ADA) adds that 25% of children in the US develop cavities before they reach kindergarten.

(more…)

How Much Money Does the Tooth Fairy Pay? A Lot, It Seems

How Much Money Does the Tooth Fairy Leave?

As if kids weren’t already hesitant to go to the dentist, here comes news that may make them want to avoid dental care altogether. According to surveys conducted by Delta Dental and Visa, the Tooth Fairy paid on average between $3.50 and $3.70 per tooth in 2013. That’s up from an average of $2.42 to $3 in 2012 and $2 to $2.60 in 2011. For children, there’s never been a better time to have their teeth fall out.

(more…)

Dental Assistant Tasks: Front Office vs. Back Office

Dental Assistant Tasks: Front Office vs Back Office

When applying for a job, a dental assistant might be asked if he or she is qualified to work in the front office or the back office, but do you know the difference between the two? Here’s a rundown, but keep in mind that dental assistants are often asked to work in both areas, so to maximize your employment potential, you should sharpen the skills it takes to succeed in the front and the back office.

(more…)

Crest Offers Chocolate Toothpaste

Crest Offers Chocolate Toothpaste

Chocoholics might find themselves paying more attention to their dental health than ever before when Crest’s new line of toothpastes debuts in February. That’s because one of the three founding flavors in the company’s Be line is chocolate. Specifically, it’s called Mint Chocolate Trek, and as the name suggests, it features both mint and chocolate flavors combined in one, um, delicious (?) package.

(more…)

7 Common Dental Care Myths

7 Common Dental Care Myths

If you think you know a lot about caring for your teeth, you might want to check out this list of widely believed dental care myths to make sure what you think is really the truth.

1. If I avoid sweets, I won’t get cavities.

Yes, the sugar in sweets can lead to cavities, but so can any carbohydrates — including bread, fruit, potatoes, honey and rice. Eating carbs causes bacteria in your mouth to produce acid that eats away at teeth, causing cavities. Brushing your teeth or gargling after meals can help get rid of food particles and thus limit the formation of acid.

(more…)

Do You Live in a “Dental Desert”?

Do You Live in a "Dental Desert"?

Dental assistants looking for jobs typically focus on improving their qualifications for landing a position, but if you’re having trouble finding employment, it may have less to do with you than with where you’re looking. In some states, a large percentage of the population lives in areas without adequate access to professional dental care, known as Dental Health Professional Shortage Areas (DHPSAs) or “dental deserts.”

(more…)

Is Your Toothpaste Too Abrasive?

Is Your Toothpaste Too Abrasive?

Most people don’t give much thought to which toothpaste to use, assuming there’s little difference between them, but did you know that some are so abrasive they could possibly do as much harm to your teeth as they do good?

Practically all toothpastes contain abrasive chemical compounds (such as aluminum hydroxide, calcium carbonate, magnesium carbonate, phosphate salts or silicates), which serve to remove plaque, stains and debris from teeth by scrubbing the surface with particles that do not dissolve in water. The level of abrasiveness of a toothpaste generally depends on the hardness, the particle size and the amount of the compound.

(more…)