Oral cancer: What you can do to help end this disease

By: American Dental Association, ASDA

🦷 The American Cancer Society estimates there will be 53,000 new cases of oral and oropharyngeal cancer in 2019, and the American Dental Association is working to provide members with resources that can help them do their part to fight and end this disease.

While April marks Oral Cancer Awareness Month, every day presents an opportunity to make a difference. Discover the ways you can do to end this disease via the American Student Dental Association. The Woodview Oral Surgery Team

The association published its clinical practice guideline on evaluation for oral cancer in 2017. It offers guidance for dentists on how to check for lesions, how to identify potentially malignant disorders and how to proceed in relevant clinical scenarios. The guideline points out that even though a variety of adjunct tools are marketed to dentists to enhance pick up of lesions, because there isn’t evidence demonstrating that they improve screening, they aren’t recommended. And for situations where a lesion is observed, the guideline provides clinical pathways for follow up.

In addition to the guideline, the ADA has produced a chairside guide to walk you through the guideline’s recommendations, along with an instructional video that shows how to perform each step of a conventional visual and tactile exam on a patient. You also can watch a brief video on the ADA’s YouTube page that highlights how to check patients for oral cancer.

Given the current increase in HPV-associated oropharyngeal cancer, the most effective thing dentists can do to prevent oropharyngeal cancer is to encourage appropriately aged individuals to receive the HPV vaccine. Learn more about the ADA’s HPV vaccine policy at ADA.org, and check out this video from an ADA dentist who has a personal connection to the disease she hopes to one day defeat.

Source: https://www.asdablog.com/oral-cancer-what-you-can-do-to-help-end-this-disease/

Do You Know The Importance Of Family Dental Care?

By: Longevity

Most of us are well-versed with the fact that dental care is important. But why exactly it is so important, is something which a majority of us are unaware of. Oral health is related to the overall health in more ways than we can imagine.

Longevity explains the importance of dental care for every member of your family, right from toddlers to seniors. Let’s take a look! The Woodview Oral Surgery Team

Toddlers

  • The first baby teeth generally appear between the time periods of 6 to 10 months. In some toddlers, these can appear as early as at 3 months, while in some they can arrive as late as at 12 months. By the time the child turns 3, all the primary teeth have erupted.
  • This phase of the eruption of teeth may result in a tender and irritable gums. Try soothing the gums by rubbing them with a clean finger or frozen teething ring.
  • Some toddlers may develop a habit of thumb sucking, which is normal. However, this habit can cause problems in the development of jaw and mouth and even teeth positioning. Sucking on pacifiers for extended periods of time can also disrupt jaw development and may result in protruded teeth. One of the best solutions to help your child get rid of thumb sucking is adapting positive reinforcement.
  • This is also an important phase to get your child started on brushing. A pea-sized amount of a toothpaste containing fluoride should be used. Make sure that your child doesn’t swallow it.

Use a toothbrush with soft bristles and gentle stroke s to brush the inside surfaces first where most of the plaque most.

Children

  • Primary teeth are important for chewing and learning to talk. They also play a vital role in determining proper alignment and spacing of the permanent teeth.
  • The enamel on the teeth of children, though fully formed, is still porous and inadequately mineralized. The jaw is growing significantly to make space for more teeth.
  • At this stage, the diet of your child is very important apart from a proper oral care routine. The quantity of sugar and the frequency of its consumption should be monitored strictly. Limit the amount of sweets between meals and prevent snacking throughout the day. Ensure that your child gets wholesome and a healthy diet and opts for healthy options instead of sugary, chewy and hard foods, which can damage the teeth and gums.
  • Supervise the brushing times of your child. Brushing twice a day regularly is very important for maintaining healthy teeth and gums.

Tweens And Teenagers

  • Children between the ages of 10 and 12 or tweens are still losing their primary teeth. The last baby tooth is generally lost by the age of 12 and around this time the second permanent molars appear. Since the permanent teeth are so new, they are more prone to decay.
  • Teenagers, during the age bracket of 16 and 20 get their permanent third molars or the wisdom teeth. These can either grow in earlier, later or never at all. In many cases, the pediatric dentist may recommend the removal of the wisdom teeth since they are difficult to clean or are causing problems.
  • Teenagers often face a lot of peer pressure. This can cause them to might make choices which are harmful to their oral as well as overall health. These include oral piercings, smoking, eating disorders, chewing tobacco, etc.
  • Most kids during this stage of their lives need braces because of misaligned teeth. It’s best to find a dentist who is trained in kids’ oral care and seek professional help for your child’s healthy teeth.
  • Parents should help both tween and teenagers make healthy lifestyle choices including oral habits since their new permanent teeth are more prone to decay and damage.

Adults

  • Adults are more likely to neglect their oral health due to a plethora of reasons. They are at an increased risk of getting gum diseases such as gingivitis or even tooth loss in severe cases
  • Oral health problems can lead to overall health problems such as diabetes, heart diseases, inflammation, etc.
  • Regular brushing and flossing, quitting smoking, limiting coffee and tea intake, eating a healthy diet and drinking sufficient amount of water can help adults maintain a healthy mouth.

Seniors

  • A majority of them don’t have natural teeth. The remaining teeth need to be preserved as they are more prone to oral health issues, such as gum diseases.
  • Certain medical conditions such as arthritis in fingers and hands can make brushing difficult.
  • Use an electric toothbrush. Rinse afterward with an antiseptic mouthwash. Clean the dentures daily.
  • Oral issues at this age can result in overall health complications related to digestion, heart and other vital organs.

A family dentist offers many advantages such as familiarity, convenience, and reliability. They know your family’s dental history thoroughly, which allows for early detection and prevention of any underlying oral or related overall health issues. So if you still haven’t consulted one, find a dentist near you.

Never miss out on dental checkups. Professional dental care can help ensure healthy smiles in your family.

Source: https://www.longevitylive.com/health-living/family-health/know-importance-family-dental-care/

What Dental Issues Can Women Face during Pregnancy?

By: Lucy Wyndham, Dental News

🤰 Pregnancy brings about many changes in your body, but one which you may not necessarily expect is a change to your oral health. The American Dental Association recommends that all pregnant women visit their dentist before having a baby, to take care of cavities and any pregnancy-related issues that need attending to. Even if you think you are pregnant, you should let us know, since you may need to postpone some treatments.

If you are actively trying to have a baby, check out some of these common dental health issues shared by Dental News, so you can proactively tackle each issue and ensure optimal oral health during pregnancy. The Woodview Oral Surgery Team

Pregnancy and Gingivitis

Inflammation and bleeding of the gums (gingivitis) are common during pregnancy. Changes in hormone levels in your body can cause increased blood circulation to the gum area, thus increasing the risk of bleeding. These changes can also make it easier for plaque to build up on the gumline, thus increasing the likelihood of bacterial infection. It is important to take good care of your gums even before getting pregnant, brushing and flossing at least twice a day (or more), and visiting your dentist for a professional cleaning. Use a salt water rinse to keep gums clean during pregnancy, and try to consume a healthy diet without refined, sugary foods and sweets that promote plaque buildup. Because some medications can be harmful during pregnancy, it is best to avoid infection altogether.

Pregnancy and Tooth Decay

Because plaque can build up more easily on gums and teeth, decay can also arise. Morning sickness (which can include bouts of vomiting) can also promote caries, because it creates an acidic environment that erodes tooth enamel. Oral problems are not only a problem for mothers, but for the baby as well, since issues like periodontitis and serious tooth decay increase the risk of premature birth, gestational diabetes, and preeclampsia – a dangerous condition characterized by high blood pressure, high levels of protein in urine, and swelling in the extremities.

Pregnancy Tumors

Some women develop non-cancerous lumps misleadingly called ‘pregnancy tumors’, which are not actually dangerous. These tiny lumps form between teeth and  appear most often during the second trimester. Also called ‘pyogenic granuloma’, they can bleed easily and cause discomfort. Your dentist may recommend removal, but if they do not bother you and you wish to wait, you will find that these lumps disappear on their own once you have given birth.

Looser Teeth

Teeth can become loose during pregnancy even if your gums are healthy, owing to higher levels of progesterone and estrogen, which affect the ligaments that support teeth. Once again, this condition is temporary and does not lead to tooth loss. See your dentist if loose teeth are causing discomfort to ensure that movement is simply hormone-related.

If you are thinking of getting pregnant or you are already awaiting a baby, make your oral health a priority. Changing hormone levels bring about a higher risk of a number of conditions, including increased gum swelling and lose teeth. A good professional cleaning will ensure your gums and teeth are plaque-free and will ensure that any signs of decay or gum disease are treated with pregnancy-safe medications and techniques.

Source: http://www.dentalnews.com/2019/02/14/dental-issues-pregnancy/

What to know about gargling with salt water

By: Jenna Fletcher, Medical News Today

😷 Sore throats and mouth sores are common conditions that most people experience.

🧂 Do you know that saltwater gargles can be a cheap, safe, and effective way to ease pain and relieve symptoms from conditions that affect the mouth and throat?

In this article, Medical News Today discussed what saltwater gargles are and what conditions they can help treat and prevent. You’ll also learn how to make and use a saltwater gargle, as well as risks and considerations. The Woodview Oral Surgery Team

While pharmacies and other stores sell medicated mouthwashes and similar products, some people prefer saltwater gargles and other home remedies.

What is it?

A saltwater gargle is a home remedy for sore throats and other causes of mouth pain. Saltwater solutions are a simple mix of water and table salt and can be a cheap, safe, and effective alternative to medicated mouthwashes.

Saltwater solutions are not well studied. A small study from 2010 of 45 children investigated the effectiveness of a saline saltwater gargle and a mouthwash containing alum.

The researchers reported that children who used one of the saltwater gargle twice daily for 21 days had significantly reduced levels of mouth bacteria, compared with children who used a placebo.

However, the saltwater gargle was not as effective at reducing bacteria as the alum mouthwash. Alum, which is potassium aluminum sulfate, is an active ingredient in some medicated mouthwashes.

Doctors and dentists often recommend saltwater gargles to help alleviate mouth and throat pain.

Uses

Saltwater gargles can be effective for treating mild pain, discomfort, and tickles in the mouth and throat. We discuss some of the conditions that saltwater gargles can help treat and prevent below.

Sore throats

Saltwater gargles can be an effective way to relieve discomfort from sore throats.

Both the Institute for Clinical Systems Improvement and the American Cancer Society (ACS)recommend gargling with salt water to soothe sore throats. According to the ACS, regular use of saltwater gargles can help keep the mouth clean and prevent infections, particularly in people undergoing chemotherapy or radiation therapy.

Canker sores

Canker sores are painful ulcers that can develop in the mouth. Gargling with salt water may help ease pain and promote healing of the sores.

Allergies

Some allergies, such as hay fever, can cause a person’s nasal passages and throat to swell, which can be uncomfortable. Though gargling with salt water will not prevent the allergy, it may help alleviate some of the throat discomfort.

Respiratory infections

Upper respiratory infections are typical and include common colds, the flu, mononucleosis, and sinus infections. Some research suggests that gargling with salt water can alleviate symptoms and even help prevent upper respiratory infections.

For example, a study from 2013 involving 338 participants found that those who gargled with salt water were less likely to have upper respiratory infections.

Dental health

Regularly gargling with salt water can assist in removing bacteria from the gums, which helps in cleaning and preventing the buildup of plaque and tartar. A buildup of bacteria in the mouth can lead to gum disease and tooth decay.

The American Dental Association (ADA) recommend that people gently rinse the mouth with a warm saltwater solution after having a dental procedure. Doing this can help keep the extraction site clean and prevent infection.

Does salt water kill bacteria?

Salt water may kill some, but does not kill all, mouth and throat bacteria. However, solutions of salt can help bring bacteria to the surface of the gums, teeth, and throat. Once the bacteria is brought to the surface, some of it washes away when a person spits the salt water out.

Recipe

Saltwater gargles are easy and cheap to make. The ADA recommend adding half of a teaspoon (tsp) of salt to 8 ounces of warm water, then mixing until they are combined.

An alternative recipe involves adding baking soda to the saltwater solution. For example, the ACSrecommend combining the following to make a saltwater gargle:

  • 1 qt water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda

How to gargle effectively

To use the saltwater gargle:

  1. Take as much of the solution into the mouth as is comfortable.
  2. Gargle the salt water around the back of the throat.
  3. Rinse around the mouth, teeth, and gums.
  4. Spit out the solution.

A person should try to gargle the saltwater solution for as long as possible. Although the saltwater solution is generally safe to swallow, it is best to spit it out.

For maximum effectiveness, a person should gargle with salt water once or twice a day.

People recovering from dental procedures can use a saltwater solution to rinse their mouth. However, for the first few days, they should rinse very gently to prevent scabs from opening up, and follow the directions from their dental professional.

Risks and considerations

Gargling with salt water is considered safe for both children and adults. However, people who have trouble gargling should not use a saltwater gargle.

Some young children may also not be able gargle effectively. A pediatrician may be able to provide advice on when a child is ready to gargle.

Saltwater gargles are safe to use several times a day if desired, and for most, there are no side effects. People with high blood pressure or those with other medical conditions who need to limit their sodium intake should speak with a doctor or dentist before gargling with salt water.

People who do not like the taste of saltwater solutions can try adding honey or garlic to help improve the flavor.

Summary

Gargling with salt water can help keep a person’s mouth clean and may alleviate pain and discomfort from sore throats, mouth sores, and dental procedures. Saltwater gargles are quick and easy to make and are a cheap and natural alternative to medicated mouthwashes.

A person can safely gargle with salt water several times a day. There are typically no side effects. However, people with high blood pressure or those who need to limit their sodium intake should speak with a doctor before gargling with salt water.

Source: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/325238.php?fbclid=IwAR1V0glK-riAGspo3l2zCw5z5_DN_Yj5CeWJZHEq8XmgFm9ATPAyXpNZIdQ