Monday, March 31, 2014

Mouthpiece is NOT just equipment for football players!!

You hear it every pop warner season, coaches yelling "Get Your Mouthpiece In". Where you don't hear it is in basketball or baseball. As the baseball season in teeing off today on all levels, it is important the your child is protected as much as possible. Youth leagues all around have done a great job to make sure that your young player is as safe as possible. However, the league can only do so much. Making sure your young athlete has the right equipment will help ensure that they are protected. 

A mouthpiece, (or mouthguard) is one of the pieces of equipment. In baseball a mouthpiece can protect the teeth if they get hit in the mouth with a ball. It will stop the from biting their tongue when swing, sliding, or diving and will protect them if by chance there is a collision with another player on field.

When it comes to sports, you can never be too safe. For more tips on your keeping your baseball player safe this season visit the Kids Health website.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Cleft Palate and Cleft Lip

Cleft lip or palate is birth defect that affects the upper lip and the roof of a child's mouth.  This happens when the roof of the mouth does not develop normally during the mother’s pregnancy, leaving an opening in the hard or soft palate that may go through the nasal cavity.  Cleft lip or cleft palate is the most common birth defect of the head and neck.  Until it is treated with surgery, a cleft palate or lip can cause problems with feeding, speech and hearing.

Symptoms for Cleft palate or lip are misaligned teeth, change in nose shape, failure to gain weight, feeding problems, flow of milk through nasal passage, poor growth, ear infections, also speech difficulties.

Surgery to close the cleft lip is often done when the child is between 6- 9 months old.  Surgery may be needed later on the nose area.  A cleft palate is usually closed with within the first year of life so that the Child's speech normally develops.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Metal Fillings & Tin Foil Don't Mix!

Have you ever (either accidentally or on purpose) chewed a piece of tin foil and had it come into contact with a metal (amalgam) filling? It's an interesting experience, to be sure. Not only does it feel like a small electric shock has occured, but it puts a strange, metallic taste in your mouth. I looked it up online just for fun and came up with this interesting article that explains exactly what happens when your metal filling comes in to contact with another piece of foreign metal inside your mouth. Read on!

Click this link to read the article.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Diabetes And Dental Health

What does diabetes have to do with dental health? Good question!!

Diabetes plays a major role in dental problems.  An estimated 21 million Americans who are diagnosed with diabetes are surprised to learn about the unexpected complications with this disease.

The three most significant problems seen in the mouth are infections, saliva problems and gum disease.  People who have been diagnosed with diabetes are more likely to develop oral infections and periodontal disease, than those who are not diabetics. 

Some problems diabetics might experience are; decreases of salivary flow (which causes dry mouth) along with a burning mouth or tongue and premature gum recession.  Frequent cleanings and medicated mouth rinses help alleviate the discomfort caused by these diabetic related dental maladies.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Oil Pulling

I have been seeing and hearing about this new fad called oil pulling, I wasn't sure what it was until I looked it up!

Oil pulling involves swishing coconut oil on your mouth for 20 minutes to help improve oral and overall health.

 Some benefits of oil pulling:
  • Whitens teeth
  • Strengthens your gums/'teeth and jaw
  • Helps with sensitive teeth
  • Body detox
  • General pain issues
If you would like to read more click here!

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Diabetes and Periodontal Disease

Diabetes and Periodontal Disease: The connection makes sense! I was reading in a journal the other day about the connection between Periodontal Disease and Diabetes. For the estimated 18-20 million Americans that have Diabetes it is important to understand that one of the main avenues of bacteria into the bloodstream could be from Periodontal Disease. As Diabetics know all to well , the influx of bacteria into their system is much more dangerous then if they didn't have Diabetes because of the higher risk of infections. Periodontal disease is sometimes spoken of as the sixth complication of Diabetes. Now research is suggesting that Periodontal Disease and Diabetes is a two way path. Poorly controlled type 2 Diabetics are more likely to have Periodontal Disease and Periodontal Disease can raise blood sugar levels making it harder for the Diabetic to control his/her blood sugar levels. Make sure that if you are a Diabetic you let your dental care provider know. Your dentist will want to note this important medical information in your chart so that he/she can watch it closely as you have your dental health needs evaluated and treated.

Original Post By Dr C. 3/3/08

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

The History of The Toothpick

There is evidence that the toothpick has been around in various forms since 1600 BC and that our modern day toothbrushes actually evolved from them! In early times, things like porcupine quills and chicken bones and wood splinters were used to clean teeth. Here are some excerpts from an article I found that has some great information about when the toothpick originated.

"The skulls of Neanderthals, as well as Homo sapiens, have shown clear signs of having teeth that were either flossed with blades of grass or picked with rudimentary toothpick tools. Similar markings have been found in the fossilized teeth of both American Indians and Australian Aborigines."
Source: Smithsonian Magazine

Here is another excerpt I found particularly interesting...
"At one time, you could tell a person's status by what they used to pick their teeth. Kings, queens, and lords picked their teeth with designer toothpicks made from gold, silver, or ivory. Often, they were inlaid with precious stones. Twigs and porcupine quills were most often used by the "lower classes." By the 17th century, the toothpick was the latest fad for the educated classes in Europe they were even included in traveling sets together with a knife and spoon."
Source: http://members.aol.com/acalendar/February/toothpick.html

Here's a closing fact just for fun:
Did you know?
"One cord of wood (logs 8' in length, stacked 4' high, and 4' wide) can be turned into 7.5 million toothpicks." Source: amusingfacts.com

Monday, March 3, 2014

READ THE FINE PRINT: Are You Getting The Best "Bang For Your Buck"??

Time after time company policies, extra hidden charges and the other things that companies do not want to see but have to tell you are written in very small print, smaller than this. This is in an effort to make it so overwhelming and defer you from reading it so you can focus on their bigger message, which usually looks something like this:


LOW MONTHLY FEE

Now honestly, how many of you actually read the paragraph at the top of the page? You see, this is what companies bank on. The fact that you will just read the larger print and purchase whatever they are saying.

This rings especially true in the dental insurance and dental plan industry. More and more plans or policies are being presented with a low monthly fee that is very enticing to consumer. However, are you really getting the best bang for your buck? Let's check it out and see. Let's take 2 companies, Company A is charging 15.00 a month for your whole family. Company B is charging 179.00 per year for your whole family. Before we go any further, right now most of you will probably think that the 15.00 a month is a better deal.. it is lower number marketing.. but if you take 15.00/mo X 12mo, you get 180.00/year. 

So let's read the fine print now. Company A has over 2000 dentists, covers a  wide range of procedures at 30-70% off of your dental work and 20% off of a specialist. Sounds good so far ehh? However, in the really small print it says : any procedure not listed on the this fee schedule will be charged at the dentists usual and customary rate. Did you catch that? That means that if they didn't list the cost of the procedure, then you will pay full price at the dentist office. Then let's look at the actual fee schedule. Cleanings, Exams, X-Rays are covered at 70% off. VERY NICE!! But what happens when you a filling or a crown? They are covered at 45% off. Okay that's not bad. Dentures or Braces? 30% off! It's better than paying full price. However if you have failed to read the fine print, saw the 70% off and assumed that every procedure was discounted that much, then you will pretty upset when you get your bill.

Now let's look at Company B, they have over 500 dentists. They cover a flat 50% off of your dental work and 25% off of a specialist. Sounds good.. let's go to the fine print: Every procedure not listed this fee schedule shall be cover at 50% off the dentist usual and customary rate. Did you catch that one? That means that even if the procedure is not listed then you are still getting a 50% discount. Whether it is a cleaning, xray, filling, crown, braces or dentures, you are still getting a 50% discount.

So I ask.. which one is the better deal? Company A - is 180.00/year for a family, with 30-70% off, 20% Specialist, and unlisted procedures not covered. Company B - is 179.00/year, 50% off of everything, 25% off of specialist and covers unlisted procedures at 50% off. 

It is obvious that with Company B you are getting more "bang for your buck". Company A looks very enticing with their low numbers and high percentages, but it will leave you paying more in the dental office.

So I leave you with this: When you are looking for Dental Coverage, read the fine print. Research and make sure you are actually getting what is being offer in the big bold colorful letters.

To compare various dental coverage options, you can go to our comparison zone on our website.