Thursday, April 30, 2020

What Is Diode Laser Surgery?

If you are wondering what Diode Laser surgy is and does, read the article below by Melissa Busch, DrBicuspid assistant editor.

April 30, 2020 -- Diode laser surgery can successfully treat white lesions on the lips, promoting quick healing and complete lip restoration without causing bleeding or requiring stitches, according to a recent case report published in the Cureus Journal of Medical Science.
A diode laser can safely and effectively be used to treat recurrent white lip lesions without any scarring or unappealing aesthetics, according to the authors.
"For white lesions occurring in the lip, diode laser surgery allows for meticulous treatment and helps prevent cosmetic complications while providing effective and safe recovery," wrote the group, led by Domenico De Falco from the faculty of dentistry at the University of Bari Aldo Moro in Bari, Italy (Cureus, April 8, 2020, Vol. 12:4, e7585).
The most common malignancy of the oral mucosa, squamous cell carcinoma, accounts for up to 90% of all oral cancers. Persistent or recurrent white lesions of the oral mucosa create a suspicion of malignancy; therefore, they often require biopsy or complete removal. Conventional surgery for potentially malignant lips lesions may result in scarring and other cosmetic complications, so treatment alternatives, such as diode laser surgery, are valuable.
The case
A 32-year-old woman sought treatment for a persistent lesion on her lower lip. The patient said the white plaque was chronic and it had been treated twice in the past. An exam revealed no other lesions in her oral cavity, according to the authors.
The woman agreed to have the lesion removed with a diode laser. She was given local anesthesia, as well as light conscious sedation to reduce dental anxiety, and the lesion was removed. A diode laser with a wavelength of 980 ± 10 nm in a continuous wave, an output energy of 1 W, and a fiber of 320 ┬Ám was used. The procedure caused no bleeding and required no stitches, they wrote.
The tissue sample was sent for examination, leading to a diagnosis of friction keratosis, a condition that causes lesions due to chronic biting or sucking. The woman's lip healed completely with no cosmetic complications after 14 days, according to the report.
A promising treatment
This case showed that diode laser surgery allows for the careful, decisive removal of a lesion without thermal damage to the surrounding tissues, bleeding, and unnecessary stitches. It also allows for faster healing and an appealing cosmetic outcome, the group concluded.
Additionally, diode laser surgery can simplify oral surgery procedures, especially those performed on individuals diagnosed with highly contagious diseases, such as HIV or hepatitis C. It minimizes the risk of bleeding and exposure to others.
"The diode laser represents a safe and decisive tool for surgical and nonsurgical treatments in the oral cavity," they wrote.

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Fun Facts About Animal Teeth


Since we really cant focus on our own teeth right now given that most dentist offices are closed for routine care, I thought it would be fun to re-post this blog about animals. Here are some facts about different animals I collected from various sites on the web. Just a little fun trivia for everyone to read. Enjoy!

  • Beavers, Gophers, Rats, Mice and Hamsters teeth grow continuously throughout their lives. They must grind their teeth down to keep them at a reasonable length.
  • A dolphin has only one set of teeth to last throughout it's lifetime.
  • An Armadillo has 104 teeth.
  • A Blue Whale is the largest mammal on earth but it has absolutely no teeth!
  • A Cat's jaws cannot move sideways.
  • Turtles and Tortoises are toothless.
  • Rabbits are born with their permanent teeth.
  • African Elephants have only 4 teeth.
  • Mosquitoes have 47 teeth. (They drink blood, what's to chew, lol?)
  • A snail has thousands of tiny teeth, yet it's mouth is smaller than the head of a pin!
Keep smiling!!!

Thursday, April 23, 2020

Different Types Of Mouthwash Can Help Various Types Of Dental Health

There many types of mouthwashes available in today's market. Every single one claiming to be optimal for perfect dental health. Is that really the case? Here are some things to look for when choosing a mouthwash.

First, you want to check and see if it has alcohol or is alcohol-free. Alcohol dries your mouth and can cause burns to your gums and inside of your cheeks. Alcohol-free is the better option.

Depending on what you and your dentist have come up with for your area of dental focus can sway your decision of what mouthwash to get. It is based on the ingredients in the mouthwash.

Area of Focus:                                          Ingredient:
Better Gum Health                                Cetylpyridinium Chloride
Dry Mouth                                              Biotene
Cavity Protection                                   Sodium Fluoride
Teeth Whitening                                    2% Peroxide

These are just a few examples of ingredients in mouthwash that can help you in whatever area you are wanting to focus on. You, dentist or hygienist, should be able to direct you as to which product they recommend. Always remember that mouthwash is not a replacement for brushing and flossing.


The original post was made on September 24,2014

Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Veneers - Not as Popular As They Used To Be, But Still A Viable Option

Let's face it. This is the age of what I like to call "instant gratification".  More and more, we prefer simpler, easier methods to just about everything concerning our daily lives, so why not dentistry, right?  Fortunately for us, the dental industry has done a fantastic job of keeping up with our demands!
Many adults would like to enhance or correct their bite and smile but don't have the patience for braces; or, are embarrassed at the prospect of wearing braces for an extended period of time. There may be a solution in the form of Cosmetic Veneers! Veneers can cover gaps, discolored or slightly misaligned teeth and give you a brighter and overall uniform look to your smile, often in just a few visits to the dentist. The drawback, if there has to be one, is that they can be costly, though not as much as implants and possibly even cheaper than braces! Keep in mind that for severely misaligned or decayed teeth, veneers may not be a good option. There are some things that just need to be fixed by conventional means.

If you think you might be a candidate, check with your dentist. He or she will advise you if Veneers are an option for you.

Keep Smiling!

Friday, April 17, 2020

Abscessed Teeth Can Cause Serious Illness!

Of all of the dental problems one can have, abscesses are among the most dangerous and unpredictable. Often times, people will let tooth pain go for a lengthy period of time and will not see a dentist until their pain is severe and an abscess has developed. Other times, an abscess can develop seemingly overnight. In rarer instances, an abscess can be growing under a tooth without the patient suffering severe pain and the only symptoms may be too subtle to notice by the untrained eye.... The danger in letting an abscess go untreated is that serious complications can arise. The following list should make someone sit up and pay attention!

If left untreated, abscesses can cause:

1. Loss of the tooth
2. Fever, chills
3. Spread of infection to jawbone (serious infection can cause disfigurement)
4. Spread of infection to brain, heart or lungs (extremely dangerous, can cause death!)
5. Excessive swelling leading to blockage of airway or inability to eat or drink

You cannot be too careful with a toothache, or even a twinge...it can lead to an abscess.
If you or anyone you know has a toothache, don't let it progress to an abscess! If dental care is not immediately available, go to an urgent care center or the ER for treatment! Abscesses can become life threatening!

**Note that during this shutdown because of the COVID virus, most dental offices are seeing patients on an emergency basis. Call your dentist if you have any signs of an abscessed tooth! 

Thursday, April 16, 2020

Reasons To Scrape Your Tongue Every Day!

Did you know that when we are sleeping our digestive system remains awake? If your answer is no, then here is an interesting fact: Our digestive system is removing toxins from our body and depositing them onto the surface of our tongue. If we don't remove these toxins they get reabsorbed into the body causing other problems such as weakened immune system and respiratory problems.

Listed below are some reasons why you should make tongue scraping part of your daily oral health routine:
  1. Improves breath: Removing bacteria, food debris, fungi and dead cells from the tongue reduces the odor from your mouth. To get the best results, you will need a tongue scraper, a toothbrush doesn't cut it.
  2. Improves taste: Removing the build-up will expose your taste buds. This will lead to better enjoyment of the flavors of your food.
  3. Improves dental health: Bacteria that is removed from the tongue are responsible for things like periodontal problems, plaque, build-up, tooth decay, and many others.

Get to know your tongue!
Did you know your tongue us a mirror reflection of your internal organs? By scraping your tongue you are stimulating and massaging those corresponding organs!

Thursday, April 9, 2020

Quarantine Fail...

I realize that the enjoyment of being stuck home due to COVID-19 is wearing off and people are starting to become creative to decrease their boredom. I have noticed an increase in tick-tock videos, videos of pranks and magic tricks, which are fun to watch but remember to say safe.

By Melissa Busch, DrBicuspid.com assistant editor...
April 9, 2020 -- A man accidentally set his mouth on fire while attempting a stunt during a vigil held in India on April 5 to show support for workers on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to news reports.
The man, who was not identified, miraculously suffered only minor burns to the inside of his mouth.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi called for India to turn off lights and light candles or flash mobile torches from their balconies for nine minutes on April 5 to show solidarity with "corona warriors" and to "challenge the darkness" that the virus brings. People around the globe have shown their support for doctors, nurses, scientists, healthcare staff, first responders, and other essential workers by sending messages of thanks, applauding, and having meals delivered to those working the hardest during the pandemic.
The fire-breather defied India's lockdown orders to show off his trick, which involves exhaling the fine mist of fuel over an open flame to form a fireball.
On the evening of the vigil, the man walked out into a street in Ujjain, Madhya Pradesh, which had multiple bystanders.
Seconds into the stunt, the area of the fire-breather's mouth became ignited. His audience rushed to his aid upon seeing the alarming flame coming from his mouth. They tried patting out the flames but ended up taking him to shelter and dousing him with water, extinguishing the fire, according to reports.

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Keeping Healthy Teeth The Natural Way

For years people have gone the all-natural route instead of pharmaceutical medicines. Today many people turn to herbal remedies for many reasons. A couple being it is cheaper then the alternatives and you are not getting the chemicals found in traditional medicines.

For those of you that drink green tea, did you know it is good for fighting dental cavities by getting rid of bacteria? Apples also help keep bacteria away too. To ease that toothache you may have you can use clove oil, vinegar and also you can place an ice bag on your face wherever the pain is. Those things will help ease your pain until you can get into the dentist. Most people push aside the little parsley that comes on your dinner plate, but if you have somewhere to be after dinner and don’t have time to brush your teeth or any gum on hand eat the parsley and it will do the trick.
To whiten your teeth rub the white inside of an orange rind against your teeth and rinse after a few minutes or you can make a paste using a few strawberries, let it sit for a few minutes then rise with a little baking soda.
Those are just a few examples on how you can use herbal remedies that are all natural and healthy for you.

Keep Smiling! 

Thursday, April 2, 2020

Question From Our Member...

Question From Our Member:
B. Scott of Long Island, New York asks: 

I have a strange taste in my mouth and some pain from my tongue.  What could be causing it and what should I do?

Savon’s Answer

After doing some research, here is our best non–medical advice.

The most common causes of pain in the tongue can be from canker sores; cold sores; dehydration; dry mouth; fever (sickness); or thrush.  Thrush can appear as a white lesion that bleeds when scraped or as a red, roundish lesion.

Pain or burning of the tongue can also indicate a vitamin deficiency, such as B12 and/or vitamins B2, B3, B6, and B9.  Other pains in the tongue can be caused by more serious conditions such as oral cancers, which can appear as red and/or white lesions.

Complete loss of taste is called ageusia, partial loss of taste is called hypogeusia, and a distorted sense of taste is called dysgeusia.  The most common cause of strange taste is due to medications.

The most common peculiar taste is a metallic taste, which is associated with some forms of antibiotics, antihistamines, antifungals, antipsychotics, blood pressure medications, diabetes medications, seizure medications, and Parkinson´s disease medications.

Other more common conditions that can change one´s taste are dry mouth, colds or flu, smoking, loss of smell, and nutritional deficiencies (vitamin B12 and zinc).

If a sore does not go away fairly quickly or if you have a change of taste sensation and you are not taking any medications, we strongly suggest that you consult your dentist for an examination as soon as possible.


*The information provided in this answer was derived from “Perio–Implant Advisory”.

**Original post was from our April 2020 Newsletter