Monday, January 25, 2010

The links between oral health and general health continue to develop

     Dentists and physicians have long suspected a link between gum disease and a host of pregnancy complications including premature delivery, low birth weight and spontaneous abortion. The link has been difficult to study because even healthy pregnant women may experience bleeding and inflamed gums (also known as pregnancy gingivitis), and this by itself  is not a risk to the infant. The concern is that a woman with untreated periodontal disease who becomes pregnant risks passing those bacteria to the fetus.
     A recent case in Ohio is the first clinical example of the mother's oral bacteria being cultured from the lungs and placenta of her stillborn infant.

This article summerizes the findings to be published in the February issue of Obstetrics & Gynecology
    The best defense against this risk is for women to make sure that any periodontal/gum issues be identified and treated before becoming pregnant, and that they maintain a regular schedule of preventive dental cleanings throughout the pregnancy.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Does YOUR community have fluoridated drinking water? Mine doesn't

    I find it astonishing that a recent New York Times article  (Fluoride, 1931) concludes, triumphantly,  that "Today, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 60 percent of Americans use fluoridated water."  60%  ? This is a GOOD thing?  When I was doing my residency, we routinely treated dental infections in the emergency room which could have been prevented by fluoridated water.
The lack of fluoridation in many parts of this country is a national disgrace. If 60% of children were being vaccinated, or if 60% of women had access to adequate prenatal care we would be appalled. Water fluoridation costs pennies per person per year, and is one of the great public health triumphs of the 20th century.
Considering our current concerns with runaway health care costs, fluoridation, which costs pennies per person per year, really ought to be a no-brainer.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Botox is NOT Dentistry.

In my practice, I am offering my patients improved health, function and comfort. Intentionally injecting Botulism toxin into people's bodies is inconsistent with that mission. Botox is a poor substitute for the real, lasting, aesthetic improvements we create every day with tooth whitening, bonding and porcelain veneers.

Please see this video as a good example of what NOT to do for your patients.
Please don't do ANYTHING you see promoted in this video.