A research team has uncovered how the bacterium responsible for periodontal disease, Porphyromonas gingivalis, worsens rheumatoid arthritis by leading to earlier onset, faster progression and greater severity of the disease, including increased bone and cartilage destruction.
It is not merely semantics, but rather a paradigm shift in thinking to consider dental caries (cavities) as a ‘complex disease caused by an imbalance in physiologic equilibrium between tooth mineral and biofilm fluid’. A consequence of dental caries being a complex disease is that on a population basis we may have success with a particular preventive oral program in one select segment of population in our country, but not necessarily in another segment with different cultural and behavioral habits.
Moreover, society and the dental community may need to organize our dental health care very differently in neighboring counties, and apply fluorides, tooth brushing protocols and flossing in very different ways (mouth rinsing, toothpaste, water fluoridation and supervised brushing etc.) to obtain rather similar caries reductions from one locale to another.
Contrary to urban lore, the mouth is connected to the body. So, whatever directions caries research should take from here it will require a multidisciplinary approach to solving complex problems and should be included in a well-planned healthcare approach. More than ever, well-educated clinical dentists set the stage and should be included in collaboration with colleagues trained in the multitude of new fields in the basic sciences (biophysics, functional genomics, proteomics, chemical biology, nano-technology, etc.) to address clinically relevant questions.
A higher standard of oral healthcare well planned. Get the facts, ask the Right Smile Center. If we can be of assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us.
 Fejerskov O, Nyvad B: Is dental caries an infectious disease? Diagnostic and treatment consequences for the practitioner; in Schou L (ed): Nordic Dentistry 2003 Yearbook. Copenhagen, Quintessence Publishing, 2003, pp 141– 151.
During an oral exam, we examine the inside of your mouth to check for red or white patches or mouth sores. We also feel the tissues in your mouth to check for lumps or other abnormalities. It’s important to check regularly.
Two important oral health care concerns emerging in the United States are disparities in the oral disease burden and the inability of certain segments of the population to access oral healthcare. Older Americans are becoming a larger segment of our population and suffer disproportionately from oral diseases, with the problem being particularly acute for individuals in long term care facilities. Population projections for the United States indicate that the elderly will constitute an increasing percentage of the population as we proceed into the 21st century.
In 2001, the population of the United States was almost 278 million, and 12.6% of the population was 65 years of age or older. By 2015, the population increased to 312 million (3.08 million in 2010) and 14.7% of the population will be aged 65 years or older. In 2030, which is within the practice lives of students currently enrolled in dental schools, the population will have increased to more than 350 million, and 20% of the population—1 of every 5 members of the US society—will be 65 years of age or older. This large segment of our population is further compounded by the elderly population continuing to become increasingly diverse in terms of race, ethnicity,financial resources, and living conditions.
The challenges faced by both the dental profession and the nation as a whole regarding provision of oral health care services to older adults are the subject of a recent report prepared by Oral Health America. All 50 states were surveyed to determine the level of Medicaid coverage for dental services, and the report concludes that financing oral health care services for the elderly will be a major challenge to our future. Medicare does not provide any coverage for dental services, and only 1 of 5 Americans aged 75 years or older has any type of private dental insurance. Given our current economic circumstances and resulting problems with Obamacare, it will be highly unlikely that our government resources will be adequate to gear up for the impending problem of oral health in the elderly.
They suffer from chronic disorders that either directly or indirectly affect oral health, including autoimmune disorders such as pemphigus and pemphigoid. They generally require multiple medications, and common side effects of the more than 500 medications used to treat their overall health issues usually reduce salivary flow. The reduction in saliva adversely affects their quality of life, the ability to chew, and leads to significant problems of the teeth and their supporting structures.
The elderly consistently have difficulty performing routine oral hygiene procedures because of physical limitations, such as Parkinson’s or rheumatoid arthritis. In addition, oral infection is now recognized as a risk factor for a number of systemic diseases, including cardiovascular diseases, cerebrovascular diseases,diabetes, mellitus, and respiratory disorders.
Also,it is important to note that once people have lost their teeth and are using complete dentures, their oral health needs do not decrease. Our jaws are not static and may continue to resorb over time. In addditon to continued resorbtion of bone, improperly fitted dentures adversely affect chewing, leading to poor nutrition resulting in a shorter life expectancy. Furthermore, those without teeth remain susceptible to oral cancer, mucosal diseases, and alterations in salivary gland function.
So for the vast majority of seniors residing in a long term care facility, financing of and access to oral health care services will be a formidable challenge. Given that medicare does not provide coverage for routine dental services including exams,and in the absence of private insurance or personal resources, a large portion of this group will not be able to afford any dental services whatsoever, let alone the most appropriate treatments.Clearly, there must be a response to the increasing oral health concerns of the elderly who present with special needs, especially those who are home bound or living in long term facilities burdened with other chronic disorders.
While effective preventive measures exist for younger populations (water fluoridation, dental sealants and parents), no preventive measures have been devised to address the expected increase in oral health needs of our aging population. And the need for a coordinated effort to address their oral healthcare needs suggested by demographic trends and epidemiological data necessitates our planning for what might be considered a crisis or at least a paradigm shift in oral health care delivery for the elderly.
Seniors who have contributed so vitally to our society’s well-being, deserve to be treated with the best oral health care we have to offer.
Over the past decade there has been a dramatic appearance of ‘cosmetic dentists’ to the degree that almost every dentist is now a cosmetic dentist. Why? Because there is no such thing as a cosmetic dentist and therefore it is unregulated. Because the term ‘cosmetic’ is unregulated there is no shortage of dentists pressing the envelope of ethics. So how do choose the right dentist?
Make sure your ‘cosmetic’ dentist is accredited by the American Dental Association and not just a member. This would be a prosthodontic trained dentist, which is a 3 year post-doctoral dental degree specializing in aesthetic and functional dentistry.
Don’t be fooled by all of the organizations that provide unaccredited certifications. The only accredited specialties are those approved by the American Dental Association and cosmetic dentistry is not an approved credential.
Select a prosthodontist who performs cosmetic dentistry every day. Creating the right smile is more of an art than a science.
Look for real reviews and a history of longevity within the field of prosthodontics.
Request a consult and ask to see before and after results.
Finally, trust your instincts.
A prosthodontist will have a significant amount of experience in complex cases. According to Forbes Magazine the prosthodontist is the rarest dental specialty in the United States, making up less than 2% of the dentists.
So for the right smile make sure you have the right cosmetic dentist, a prosthodontist.
October is National Breast Cancer Month and Oral Hygiene Month.
Bisphosphonates are often used to treat osteoporosis in postmenopausal women. An examination of data from two randomized clinical trials finds that three to four years of treatment with bisphosphonates to improve bone density is not linked to reduced risk of invasive postmenopausal breast cancer.
Just like Magic, ‘all smiles are contagious’. They make us feel happier, enhance our interactions and even lead to others thinking we are more attractive. A single smile can have a magic effect on your brain through the release of neuropeptides. These neurons spread dopamine, serotonin and endorphins throughout your body, which can leave you feeling calmer and more relaxed, even happy.
According to researchers, people are more attracted to the pictures of those who are smiling and making eye contact. It lifts our mood as well as the moods of those around us. And it can even lengthen our lives.
Your smile is something that should be worn often, so make it a priority to surround yourself with people, places and things that brighten your day. Promise yourself to be the positive, happy person in your group of friends. Be sure to look people in the eye and show them your pearly whites. The world is simply a better place when you smile.
However, your smile can also detract from your overall appearance. An unhealthy or unattractive smile can add 10 years to your appearance. It can be a distraction when your trying to communicate.
Because whiter teeth are associated with a more youthful appearance, dingy stains can leave your teeth looking dull and unattractive. Also, poorly shaped teeth or damaged teeth can add even more years. We are the right dentists who can help transform you into someone with beautiful smile. Our restorative practice can help you with the problems of self-esteem. Our restorative dentistry offers various solutions to help you change your life.
If we can be of assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us.
 Primitive emotional contagion. Hatfield, Elaine; Cacioppo, John T.; Rapson, Richard L. Clark, Margaret S. (Ed), (1992). Emotion and social behavior. Review of personality and social psychology, Vol. 14., (pp. 151-177). Thousand Oaks, CA, US: Sage Publications, Inc, xi, 311 pp.
 Molecules that promote communication between neurons.
 Abel E. and Kruger M. (2010) Smile Intensity in Photographs Predicts Longevity, Psychological Science, 21, 542–544.
The cost of a simple tooth extraction can range anywhere from $175 to $450. If the tooth is broken at the gum line, it will be considered a ‘surgical extraction’ and usually costs $350 to $500. Extracting a wisdom tooth, which we do in-house or refer out to an oral surgeon, can cost anywhere between $350 and $550, but if it’s a partially or completely impacted wisdom tooth then the cost could climb as high as $650.
The cost variation differ, for example, if the tooth disintegrates, it can take the dentist a while to get all of it out and the dentist has to take additional x-rays if that happens. Each tooth is as unique as each patient. It can be cookie cutter, but it doesn’t have to be. The bottom line is the harder the tooth is to get out, the more it costs, hence the range.
The above fees often include a follow-up office visit to check healing or to remove sutures. What should also be included is the understanding that a tooth is firmly encased in a bony socket and attached by a ligament. The socket needs to be gently widened to allow the tooth to be removed; patients will feel pressure but not pain during this procedure. Sometimes a tooth is so firmly anchored that is has to be removed in sections.
Additional related fees, may be a bone graft ($500.00) to prepare the site for a dental implant 4 to 6 months down the line. Many dental insurance plans cover 70 percent to 80 percent of tooth extraction costs if the procedure is considered to be medically necessary and not done just for cosmetic reasons.
Typically, dental insurance permits only about $1,000 per year coverage so if there are other teeth needing to be extracted then the cost can escalate above the annual limit. Because of the limited coverage that dental insurance provides, most people have come to realize that they don’t have much protection from the high cost of dental care with dental insurance alone, so we try and work out a plan to help our patients.
Our goal is to help you understand a procedure which may vary depending on the circumstances surrounding the tooth being pulled. If you have additional questions or concerns, do not hesitate to contact our office or email us.
More and more the esthetics of teeth are of great importance to patients, including tooth color. The color of the teeth is influenced by a combination of their natural color and the presence of any external stains that may form on the tooth surface. The type of natural stain and initial tooth color can play a significant role in the ultimate outcome of tooth bleaching. Where oral health care used to be the primary function of a dentist, in the past 10 years the importance of tooth whitening for patients has seen a dramatic rise in the number of tooth whitening products and procedures to come onto the marketplace. The relationship of the doctor and patient has changed. And the demand by the consumer to kind of cookie cutter the results of esthetic dentistry is supplanting the traditional approach to oral health care.
Your smile is the first thing people notice. And our goal is to help you smile, but we want to make sure it’s the right smile, one that’s natural and comfortable for you. If chipped, stained, or crooked teeth are “hiding” the real you, it’s time for what is commonly referred to as a smile make over. It is understood that a beautiful smile can brighten your lifestyle every day, both professionally and socially. And unlike plastic surgery, teeth whitening isn’t a major operation. Imagine coming in for a single appointment or two and emerging with the smile you’ve always wanted. The results are immediate and dramatic. There are many ways you can receive a youthful, attractive, natural looking smile.
Your goals for achieving the smile you want and the dental health you need are my first priority in our Chamblee and Sandy Springs offices.
So you got a mailer coupon from a dentist that says they only charge $69.95 for a regular cleaning & $19.95 for an exam & x-ray. Seems like of a cheap gimmick? And a lot of the times it might be, because depending on the type of practice it might be designed to get you in and up-charge you for a lot of unnecessary dentistry. Anecdotally, we here this a lot in corporate dental practices.
But, it just depends of on the practice. If it’s a mature practice you might want to question why they are giving away services. Usually, it’s a loss leader. Something they use to get you in and pressure you into other dental procedures. If it’s a new practice, then providing discounted services is one of the few methods a new practice has to introduce itself to the surrounding community, no different than a new restaurant trying to showcase its menu.
With respect to continuing care (on your next 6 month visit), a teeth cleaning really depends where you go and the quality of the practice you see. And it is more than likely covered by your insurance. The charge is going to be somewhere around $90+, but it can be more if there’s a need to do a full mouth root scaling. Often dental insurance will cover some or all of this cost for only 2 of your cleanings per year, regardless of what you might need.
The exam is $45 to $55 and the 4 basic bite wing x-rays are around $59 to $72. Depending on your insurance this might be covered anywhere from 60 to 100% after a small deductible is met. Periodic X-rays ($32 -$135) are needed to see if any problems are developing inside the teeth or around the jaw bone, and are generally required before cleaning the teeth of a new patient (which is why some practices offer coupons to defray the initial cost of a first visit). These are also often covered by dental insurance.
The main goal of professional teeth cleaning is to prevent gum disease, which is the primary cause of tooth loss. Dental hygiene is imperative, and cleaning your teeth is the first step toward their long term preservation.
Where we here a lot of horror stories is from the corporate dentistry experience where the more extensive deep cleaning process called scaling and root planing is up charged on your first visit. The procedure, when necessary, is done by quadrants (upper right, upper left, lower right, lower left) at a cost of about $100 -$400 per quadrant depending on the severity of the problem or $400 -$1,600 for the entire mouth. This is rare in our office, but more often than not, if the mouth is in such poor health and we can’t treat it, we will refer the you out to a periodontist. Most dental insurance includes these procedures.
Again, the goal is a healthy mouth which an integral part of your overall health. Oh, and by the way, just because you had your teeth cleaned professionally, the jobs not done. You have to do your part and brush and floss daily if you want to keep them. If you have additional questions, feel free to email or call our office. Our goal here is to create an informed patient.