Thursday, July 31, 2008

My Interview With Dental Learning Hub

I did a short interview with Dental Learning Hub about my blog.

Read the interview in Dental Learning Hub by clicking here.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

DIY Tech Support

Calling tech support for computer issues can be a real chore. There are many online forums to help with computer issues. Here are just a few to consider.

Notebook Review

Don't forget your computer manufacturers forums as well.

Next time you have a computer issue give these forums a try. It sure might beat long hold times.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

WASHINGTON, D.C. (Ivanhoe Newswire) -- Until now, dental bone surgery has meant using a scalpel and stitches to fix problems in your mouth; but now there's a new tool that makes the surgery much less scary and it's all about replacing those sharp objects with sound waves.

A drill, scalpel and a needle … three reasons Nancy Lemos, was dreading dental surgery. Periodontal disease caused bone and gum tissue to separate from her tooth.

"When I think of surgery, it's like anything else … I think of cutting," Lemos told Ivanhoe. "I think of bleeding." But none of those would be part of Lemos's surgery because her cosmetic dentist used a new procedure called Piezosurgery. "It was just so quick, it didn't seem possible," she said.

The new device uses sound waves to cut through bone -- 60,000 cycles per second. The high frequency vibrations work so fast, there's no bleeding or pain.

"Just as an opera singer will sing and crack glass, this is like the opera singer for surgery and it can crack your bone without any pain, without any discomfort, without any bleeding," Joseph Kravitz, D.D.S, a prosthodontist at the Center for Dental Health in Washington, D.C., explained to Ivanhoe.

Using an egg, Dr. Kravtiz showed the Piezosurgery's accuracy by removing the shell. "It's not hard boiled either," he pointed out.

The sound waves are programmed to cut bone, without hurting soft tissue, nerves or vessels.

"This technology makes total logical sense and there's nothing that even comes close to it," Dr. Kravitz said.

Lemos is an accomplished Ph.D., but is still amazed her procedure only took five minutes. "Why put yourself through anything else?" she said. "This is easy."

She went home pain free and considers her trip to the dentist's office a success.

Usually patients who suffer from gum diseases or have cavities that have crept into the bone need this kind of dental bone surgery.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Americans Cutting Back On Medical and Dental Care, Poll Finds

In a new poll conducted in Florida and Ohio for NPR by the Kaiser Family Foundation and the Harvard School of Public Health, one in four people say they're having trouble paying their medical bills. Many are middle-class people with jobs and health insurance. And some even say they earn six-figure incomes.

According to the survey, 30 percent of people in Florida say they've put off needed medical care. And 41 percent in Florida say they've skipped dental care

Go to NPR to read or listen to the rest.

Plasma Blade

The PlasmaBlade provides surgeons with a single tool that provides the best of all worlds:

* the precision of a traditional scalpel
* the bleeding control of traditional electrosurgery technology
* minimized thermal damage
* the ability to quickly and easily cut through all types of soft tissue, including skin, fat and muscle
* the ability to operate in a wet or dry surgical field

Results of a recent preclinical surgical incision healing study of the PEAK PlasmaBlade demonstrated that it efficiently cut tissue with effective hemostasis and minimal thermal damage compared with standard surgical techniques. Based on these and other results from preclinical studies, PEAK Surgical believes that the PEAK PlasmaBlade may offer a new alternative for surgeons to potentially provide better outcomes for their patients, including increased procedure efficiency, reduced scarring, faster and stronger wound healing and faster recovery.

View the PlamaBlade video

Sunday, July 27, 2008


I previously did a video on the Accupal and now the device is FDA registered. It makes palatal injections easier on the patient. Marty



Little Rock, AR – July 18th, 2008 – ACCUPAL, Inc. recently announced that its patent-pending ACCUPAL® Comfortable Palatal Injection System is now FDA registered and ready to ship anywhere in the United States.

Specifically, ACCUPAL is a cordless, compact, handheld device that effectively pre-conditions the oral tissue to receive virtually pain-free palatal or other intraoral dental injections that were previously unobtainable via manual injections or through the use of other devices.

According to ACCUPAL president and inventor Michael Zweifler, DDS, “I developed ACCUPAL because I was tired of inflicting pain and fear on my patients, which often caused them to put off necessary treatment. I also wanted my pediatric dentistry patients to have a positive, more comfortable experience from the very beginning and, hopefully, break the pain-fear-pain cycle that has been affecting generations of dental patients. ACCUPAL is for any dentist looking for an effective, yet affordable way to practice dentistry that is virtually pain-free.”

ACCUPAL incorporates four known and proven pain-reducing theories into one economical, user-friendly device:

1) ACCUPAL incorporates the “Pain Gate” theory to energize the dental tissue in and around the site to be punctured by the needle.1
2) ACCUPAL’s ultrasonic tissue stimulation disrupts the tissue injection site to allow standard topical gel to pre-condition the injection site, thus further reducing the needle’s pain-producing effects.
3) ACCUPAL vibrates the needle at the injection site. The pain-reducing effects of direct needle vibration are well documented as having a positive effect on injection comfort.2
4) ACCUPAL ensures that the clinician inserts the needle bevel at its narrowest point, which provides the most minimally invasive path possible and reduced tissue damage to deliver a comfortable palatal injection every time.

The innovative palatal injection device was well received during its earliest phases of development. According to Greg Stafford, DDS, an early user of ACCUPAL, “I will never give a palatal or any other intraoral injection without the benefit of ACCUPAL.” Another early adopter, B.G. Cremeen, DDS, said, “I’ve been a practicing dentist for more than 50 years and I consider ACCUPAL to be one of the top 5 products I’ve ever used.”

ACCUPAL is available online at and is very affordable when compared to other high-tech dental anesthesia delivery devices on the market. For example, the complete starter package, which includes the ACCUPAL cordless handpiece, 50 disposable tips, a patient education CD-ROM and a clinician training CD-ROM, is priced at $479.00 plus shipping and handling. Additional handpieces can be purchased at $179.00 + S&H and disposable tips are available for $99.00 + S&H for a package of 50, $189.95 + S&H for 100 and $279.95 + S&H for 150. Additional patient education and clinician training CD-ROMs are also available.

“Don’t let the affordable price fool you,” says Dr. Zweifler. “ACCUPAL is a US-made, high-quality, patent-pending, FDA-registered device that has been put through very stringent clinical and lab trials. ACCUPAL is the ‘Main Street’ dentist’s answer to over-engineered and over-priced dental anesthesia delivery devices that are currently on the market, which, quite frankly, I couldn’t afford for my practice.”


1. Melzack R, Wall PD. Pain mechanisms: a new theory. Science. 1965 Nov 19;150(699):971-9.
2. Murray P, Terrett K, Lynch E, Hussey DL. Efficacy of a vibrating dental syringe attachment on pain levels. Paper presented at: 81st General Session of the International Association for Dental Research; June 26, 2003; Göteborg, Sweden.

About ACCUPAL, Inc.

ACCUPAL, Inc. is a privately-held company based in Little Rock, Arkansas that is dedicated to developing clinically-proven, affordable products to further advance the practice of pain-free dentistry. The company’s first FDA-registered, patent-pending product, also named ACCUPAL, is a cordless, compact, handheld device that effectively pre-conditions the oral tissue to receive virtually pain-free palatal and intraoral dental injections that were previously unobtainable via manual injections or though the use of other devices. For more information, or to order online, please visit

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Dental Simulation A New Approach

Masha is a dental patient. Her oral health problems continue to change as she meets new Case Western Reserve University student dentists in Second Life's virtual dental office.

The middle-aged avatar is an integral part of a new research project of the Case Western Reserve University School of Dental Medicine and the College of Arts and Sciences department of communication sciences to teach and give students practice time to communicate with mock patients.

Not only do findings from the study have potential to revolutionize dental education but also to change the way national testing is done for patient-side communication skills.

Kristin Z. Victoroff from the dental medicine's department of community dentistry will direct the three-year Innovative Dental Assessment Research and Development (IDEA) Grant project from the American Dental Association's Joint Commission on National Dental Examinations. She will develop patient communication scenarios for simulated education and test their effectiveness in preclinical training for students.

"More dental schools are experimenting with simulation as a way to teach," said Victoroff. She is joined in the research project by Roma Jasinevicius and Catherine Demko from the dental school faculty in testing and implementing simulations in dental education at the university.

Since 2001, the Case Western Reserve dental school has been on the forefront in using simulations in teaching the physical dexterity skills by using a technology called DentSim ( DentSim is a simulated and computerized training system that uses a simulated dental patient. The school's use of the technology in dental education was spearheaded by Jasinevicius.

From that technology, the attention turned to developing what Victoroff's describes simulated experiences for the "softer" skills of dental medicine—communicating with patients.

Victoroff enlisted virtual reality experts and Art and Sciences' communication disorder scientists Stacy Williams, who directs the Virtual Immersion Center for Simulation Research (VICSR), and Kyra Rothenberg, director of the health communications minor.

They will take three approaches to simulated communications training—live actors, the immersion theater where students interact with a virtual patient in a 180-degree surround theater and with avatars, like Masha, in Second Life.

Of the three simulation methods, Victoroff is interested in using the immersion theater and Second Life. She noted that paper-based, live actors and real patients present limitations from ethical issues to logistical challenges. Meanwhile, the interactive theater and Second Life have capabilities to assess competencies in a convenient, standardized and cost-effective situation.

According to Victoroff, if successful, the virtual scenarios in an immersion theater setting or the online Second Life community might provide a potentially better way of assessing a student's abilities to communicate with patients than the current multiple-choice questions on the national examinations required for practicing professionally.

During spring semester, 70 students in the third-year dental class participated in a pilot study to develop their communication skills with live actors and virtual patients during communication skills training at the Mt. Sinai Skills and Simulation Center at the Veterans Administration Hospital.

The research project focuses on developing scenarios that aid and test students in taking patient histories, providing oral health education like tobacco cessation counseling for smokers, explaining procedures, talking about healthcare options and obtaining informed consent, and working through situations that present ethical dilemmas. These are among the competencies outlined by the American Dental Education Association.

Along with communication sciences students, the use of the virtual reality theater by dental students will advance the researchers understanding in how this technology can be applied to teaching and assessing students in different disciplines. The dental students will use a portable 50-inch LCD panel instead of the larger fixed 180-degree theater. In real time, the students interact and communicate with Masha.

"Ideally it is not that we are out to prove that virtual worlds or the VICSR system is better than standard instruction, but that they are of equal value," said Williams, adding that students should be able to walk away learning the same types of knowledge they can learn from working with live patients.

Students are very accepting of the VICR environment and put a lot of reflection in their voices when they are talking to the animated characters, said Williams.

Rothenberg will piece together students' motivations and perceptions when using this technology for their education.

According to Rothenberg who works in health communications, VICSR is already showing positive results from communication science students and patients using the virtual theater for their education and speech therapy.

"Virtual patients have much to offer in training healthcare providers, and it is equally important to explore how interactive virtual reality technology can enhance assessment of competency," said Victoroff. -Case Western Reserve University

Friday, July 25, 2008

Something Different & Green In Toothbrushes.

If you are looking for an environmentally friendly toothbrush company then check out Radius.

Why keep throwing out plastic handles when you can reuse the handle and just change the brush. Radius makes 2 type of brushes like this.

The "source" which also has a handle made from 50% recycled wood and 50% recycled plastic.

The "intelligent" has replaceable heads and a timer for proper pacing and brushing times along with a wear meter.

There are other brushes such as the Scuba and Original that may be perfect for those with dexterity issues such as arthritis.

These tooth brushes are not expensive and are environmentally friendly even the packaging is made from recycled soda bottles.

Give them a try!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Fatigue resistance of engine-driven rotary nickel-titanium instruments produced by new manufacturing methods.

J Endod. 2008 Aug;34(8):1003-5. Epub 2008 Jun 25.

Fatigue resistance of engine-driven rotary nickel-titanium instruments produced by new manufacturing methods.

Gambarini G, Grande NM, Plotino G, Somma F, Garala M, De Luca M, Testarelli L.

La Sapienza University, Rome, Italy.

The aim of the present study was to investigate whether cyclic fatigue resistance is increased for nickel-titanium instruments manufactured by using new processes. This was evaluated by comparing instruments produced by using the twisted method (TF; SybronEndo, Orange, CA) and those using the M-wire alloy (GTX; Dentsply Tulsa-Dental Specialties, Tulsa, OK) with instruments produced by a traditional NiTi grinding process (K3, SybronEndo). Tests were performed with a specific cyclic fatigue device that evaluated cycles to failure of rotary instruments inside curved artificial canals. Results indicated that size 06-25 TF instruments showed a significant increase (p < 0.05) in the mean number of cycles to failure when compared with size 06-25 K3 files. Size 06-20 K3 instruments showed no significant increase (p > 0.05) in the mean number of cycles to failure when compared with size 06-20 GT series X instruments. The new manufacturing process produced nickel-titanium rotary files (TF) significantly more resistant to fatigue than instruments produced with the traditional NiTi grinding process. Instruments produced with M-wire (GTX) were not found to be more resistant to fatigue than instruments produced with the traditional NiTi grinding process.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Plaques from different individuals yield different microbiota responses to oral-antiseptic treatment

Sara K. Filoche 1 , Dennes Soma 1 , Margo van Bekkum 1 & Chris H. Sissons 1
1 Dental Research Group, Department of Pathology and Molecular Medicine, Wellington School of Medicine and Health Sciences, University of Otago, Wellington, New Zealand


Dental caries is a polymicrobial disease and complicated to treat. Understanding the microbiota responses to treatment from different individuals is a key factor in developing effective treatments. The aim of this study was to investigate the 24-h posttreatment effect of two oral antiseptics (chlorhexidine and Listerine®) on species composition of microplate plaque biofilms that had been initiated from the saliva of five different donors and grown in both 0.15% and 0.5% sucrose. Plaque composition was analyzed using checkerboard DNA : DNA hybridization analysis, which comprised of a panel of 40 species associated with oral health and disease. The supernatant pH of the plaques grown in 0.15% sucrose ranged from 4.3 to 6 and in 0.5% sucrose, it ranged from 3.8 to 4. Plaque biomass was largely unaffected by either antiseptic. Each donor had a different salivary microbial profile, differentiating according to the prevalence of either caries or periodontal/anaerobic pathogens. Despite similar plaque microbiota compositions being elicited through the sucrose growth conditions, microbiota responses to chlorhexidine and Listerine® differentiated according to the donor. These findings indicate that efficacious caries treatments would depend on the responses of an individual's microbiota, which may differ from person to person.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

A clinical evaluation of extrinsic stain removal: a rotation-oscillation power toothbrush versus a dental prophylaxis

J Contemp Dent Pract. 2008 Jul 1;9(5):1-8.
Related Articles, Links

A clinical evaluation of extrinsic stain removal: a rotation-oscillation power toothbrush versus a dental prophylaxis.

Terezhalmy GT, Walters PA, Bartizek RD, Grender JM, Biesbrock AR.

University of Texas, Health Science Center, San Antonio School of Dentistry, San Antonio, TX, USA.

AIM: To assess extrinsic stain removal efficacy of a power toothbrush and a dental prophylaxis followed by the use of a standardized American Dental Association (ADA) reference manual toothbrush. METHODS AND MATERIALS: This was a randomized, positive-controlled, examiner-blind, parallel group, two-week study. A Lobene stain examination was performed at baseline. Subjects were randomized to one of two treatment groups: Group 1: Oral-B Vitality Pro White power toothbrush or Group 2: Subjects receiving a dental prophylaxis then using a standardized ADA reference manual toothbrush. Subjects were instructed to brush their teeth with the assigned toothbrush and a fluoride dentifrice in front of a mirror twice per day for 2 minutes. Stain was reassessed following 2 weeks of brushing. RESULTS: A significant reduction (p <0.001) in mean Lobene composite scores after 2 weeks was found for Group 1 (90.6%) and Group 2 (94.4%). Both groups also showed a significant reduction (p <0.001) in extent and intensity scores. There was no significant group difference in reduction in mean Lobene composite scores (p>0.1). CONCLUSIONS: The Oral-B Vitality Pro White power toothbrush showed effective stain removal at a level similar to receiving an oral prophylaxis followed by the use of an ADA reference manual toothbrush. CLINICAL SIGNIFICANCE: In this small study the Oral-B Vitality Pro White power toothbrush achieved statistically significant stain removal between dental visits.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Dental pulp tissue engineering with stem cells from exfoliated deciduous teeth.

J Endod. 2008 Aug;34(8):962-9.

Cordeiro MM, Dong Z, Kaneko T, Zhang Z, Miyazawa M, Shi S, Smith AJ, Nör JE.

Stem cells from human exfoliated deciduous teeth (SHED) have been isolated and characterized as multipotent cells. However, it is not known whether SHED can generate a dental pulp-like tissue in vivo. The purpose of this study was to evaluate morphologic characteristics of the tissue formed when SHED seeded in biodegradable scaffolds prepared within human tooth slices are transplanted into immunodeficient mice. We observed that the resulting tissue presented architecture and cellularity that closely resemble those of a physiologic dental pulp. Ultrastructural analysis with transmission electron microscopy and immunohistochemistry for dentin sialoprotein suggested that SHED differentiated into odontoblast-like cells in vivo. Notably, SHED also differentiated into endothelial-like cells, as demonstrated by B-galactosidase staining of cells lining the walls of blood-containing vessels in tissues engineered with SHED stably transduced with LacZ. This work suggests that exfoliated deciduous teeth constitute a viable source of stem cells for dental pulp tissue engineering.

Sunday, July 20, 2008


iStan is the latest high-tech training tool for doctors, dentists and nurses getting ready for the real thing.

The remote-controlled model doesn't miss a trick - his pupils even dilate. But be careful not to frighten iStan either - he can have a heart attack.

Read more about iStan

Saturday, July 19, 2008

The OralLongevity™ initiative is designed to increase awareness about the oral health needs of older Americans. Specifically, the OralLongevity program encourages patients to visit the dentist where they can receive information and guidance from trusted professionals. Launched in September 2007, the program aims to create a dialogue among dental professionals, mature consumers and caregivers across the U.S. For more background information, read How the OralLongevity Initiative Evolved

OralLongevity educational materials explore the link between oral health and general health and discuss ways to keep your teeth for life. By tackling oral health problems that impact adults over 60, the information and resources help dentists and consumers work together to maintain and preserve oral health, a healthy body and a great look throughout life.

Read more about Oral Longevity on the ADA web site

Friday, July 18, 2008

Relationship between periodontal infections and systemic disease.

Seymour GJ, Ford PJ, Cullinan MP, Leishman S, Yamazaki K.

Faculty of Dentistry, University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand.

Oral conditions such as gingivitis and chronic periodontitis are found worldwide and are among the most prevalent microbial diseases of mankind. The cause of these common inflammatory conditions is the complex microbiota found as dental plaque, a complex microbial biofilm. Despite 3000 years of history demonstrating the influence of oral status on general health, it is only in recent decades that the association between periodontal diseases and systemic conditions such as coronary heart disease and stroke, and a higher risk of preterm low birth-weight babies, has been realised. Similarly, recognition of the threats posed by periodontal diseases to individuals with chronic diseases such as diabetes, respiratory diseases and osteoporosis is relatively recent. Despite these epidemiological associations, the mechanisms for the various relationships remain unknown. Nevertheless, a number of hypotheses have been postulated, including common susceptibility, systemic inflammation with increased circulating cytokines and mediators, direct infection and cross-reactivity or molecular mimicry between bacterial antigens and self-antigens. With respect to the latter, cross-reactive antibodies and T-cells between self heat-shock proteins (HSPs) and Porphyromonas gingivalis GroEL have been demonstrated in the peripheral blood of patients with atherosclerosis as well as in the atherosclerotic plaques themselves. In addition, P. gingivalis infection has been shown to enhance the development and progression of atherosclerosis in apoE-deficient mice. From these data, it is clear that oral infection may represent a significant risk-factor for systemic diseases, and hence the control of oral disease is essential in the prevention and management of these systemic conditions.

PMID: 17716290 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

Thursday, July 17, 2008

BIOLASE launches new Waterlase C100 all-tissue dental laser system

BIOLASE Technology, Inc., a leading dental laser company, has announced the global launch of a new Waterlase C100 hard- and soft-tissue laser.

Designed for the restorative general dentist, the Waterlase C100 provides clinical procedures including cavity preparation, early stage periodontal therapy and soft tissue procedures with more patient comfort compared to conventional instrumentation.

Introduced as part of the company's new and expanded product strategy, Waterlase C100 is priced to appeal to a broader cross section of the dental market. First customer deliveries are expected to begin before the end of this year's third quarter.

The Waterlase C100 is scheduled to be launched at the national sales meeting of the company's exclusive North American distribution partner Henry Schein Dental, part of Melville, NY-based Henry Schein, Inc. It is also slated to be launched in Europe, as well as in other markets including Korea, Japan, Germany, Spain, Australia and New Zealand.

BIOLASE Chief Executive Officer Jake St. Philip noted that the company has engaged in market research since he came to BIOLASE in January. The results of these studies indicate that a broader product offering complements the flagship Waterlase MD in the all-tissue laser segment with multiple price points can increase the adoption rates across many segments of the dental market, especially among dentists who are just starting to build their practices.

"This introduction marks the launch of a new product strategy at BIOLASE," said St. Philip. "Our overall corporate mission is to transform the practice of dentistry and to make every dental practice a waterlase dentistry practice. Considering the broad range of clinical and cosmetic dental procedures made possible and more effective by our YSGG laser technology, offering a full range of products across the spectrum of price points should get us much closer to that goal."

The Waterlase C100 all-tissue laser combines Waterlase YSGG technology with reliability, clinician control, operating efficiency, and flexibility in tip and accessory selection. While it offers a narrower scope of applications than Waterlase MD, it provides for an advanced level of clinical results in a wide range of hard- and soft-tissue procedures.

St. Philip continued, "Our goal is to provide every dentist a laser product that addresses the needs of his or her dental practice over time. The Waterlase MD is ideal for anyone with a well-established and successful practice. And now, with the introduction of the Waterlase C100, all-tissue laser dentistry is affordable to an entire new generation of dentists and a wide range of practices that desire to provide their patients with the benefits of both hard and soft tissue laser procedures but have not been in a position to purchase our more feature-rich, high-end Waterlase MD."

The addition of the Waterlase C100 to the product family complements the Waterlase MD all-tissue laser and the ezlase diode soft tissue laser, giving BIOLASE a range of waterlase dentistry solutions.

For more information, go to BIOLASE.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Federal Employees Could Be Getting Foreign Dental Work

The US government offers federal employees a choice of four nationwide plans for dental insurance. I have heard that one of these dental insurance companies has been soliciting bids from offshore dental laboratories in order to provide a low-cost product option to their network of providers. This raises health concerns and seems to fly in the face of the Buy American Act. Click to continue...

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Adeona- Finder Software For Misisng Laptops

I know this is not dental but many of us do use laptop computers. Loss of the computer can be a huge problem. So here is a free software program that may help get your laptop back.

Adeona is the first Open Source system for tracking the location of your lost or stolen laptop that does not rely on a proprietary, central service. This means that you can install Adeona on your laptop and go — there's no need to rely on a single third party. What's more, Adeona addresses a critical privacy goal different from existing commercial offerings. It is privacy-preserving. This means that no one besides the owner (or an agent of the owner's choosing) can use Adeona to track a laptop. Unlike other systems, users of Adeona can rest assured that no one can abuse the system in order to track where they use their laptop.

Adeona is designed to use the Open Source OpenDHT distributed storage service to store location updates sent by a small software client installed on an owner's laptop. The client continually monitors the current location of the laptop, gathering information (such as IP addresses and local network topology) that can be used to identify its current location. The client then uses strong cryptographic mechanisms to not only encrypt the location data, but also ensure that the ciphertexts stored within OpenDHT are anonymous and unlinkable. At the same time, it is easy for an owner to retrieve location information.

It is available for Mac, Windows and Linux. On the Mac it will even use the built in web cam to take pictures!

Go check out Adeona

Monday, July 14, 2008

Epocrates RX for iPhone

The free Epocrates Rx software for iPhone OS puts continually updated peer-reviewed drug information at your fingertips. Epocrates information has been shown to:

* Improve patient care and safety
* Save time
* Reduce administrative burden
* Enable confident clinical decisions

Also Epocrates is available for Palm, Blackberry and Windows Mobile Devices

More information at

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Clinical evaluation of bracket bonding using two different polymerization sources.

Angle Orthod. 2008 Sep;78(5):922-5

Authors: Koupis NS, Eliades T, Athanasiou AE

Objective: To comparatively assess clinical failure rate of brackets cured with two different photopolymerization sources after nine months of orthodontic treatment. Materials and Methods: The sample of this study comprised 30 patients who received comprehensive orthodontic treatment by means of fixed appliances. Using the same adhesive, 600 stainless steel brackets were directly bonded and light cured for 10 seconds with the light-emitting diode (LED) lamp or for 20 seconds with the conventional halogen lamp. A split-mouth design randomly alternated from patient to patient was applied. Failure rates were recorded for nine months and analyzed with Pearson chi(2) test, and log-rank test at alpha = .05 level of significance. Results: The overall failure rate recorded with the halogen unit (3.33%) was not significantly different from the failure rate for the LED lamp (5.00%). Significantly more failures were found in boys compared with girls, in the mandibular dental arch compared with the maxillary arch, and in posterior segments compared with anterior segments. However, no significant difference was found between the right and left segments. Conclusion: Both light-curing units showed sufficiently low bond failure rates. LED curing units are an advantageous alternative to conventional halogen sources in orthodontics because they enable a reduced chair-time bonding procedure without significantly affecting bond failure rate.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Thirty-nine-month xylitol chewing-gum programme in initially 8-year-old school children: a feasibility study focusing on mutans streptococci and lacto

Mäkinen KK, Alanen P, Isokangas P, Isotupa K, Söderling E, Mäkinen PL, Wenhui W, Weijian W, Xiaochi C, Yi W, Boxue Z.

Institute of Dentistry, University of Turku, Finland.
Int Dent J. 2008 Feb;58(1):41-50.

AIM: To investigate the use of xylitol-containing chewing-gums in public elementary schools as a means to affect the growth of salivary and plaque mutans streptococci and salivary lactobacilli. DESIGN: Over a period of 24 months, 750 8- to 9-year-old children chewed xylitol (X group; n = 255) or xylitol-sorbitol (XS group; n = 264) gum on school days (454 days over 2 years), or chewed no gum at all (C group; n = 231). Consumption of xylitol in the X and the XS groups was 6.6 and 5.4g per day, respectively. Use of gum took place at school in four daily episodes of which three were supervised by teachers. Following the 24-month chewing-gum period, the subjects were re-examined after 15 months (total follow-up period: 39 months) at which time an extraneous comparison group (ExC; n = 117) was also examined. The numbers of subjects examined after 39 months were: X, 239; XS, 248; C3 217. METHODS: Salivary and plaque levels of mutans streptococci and the salivary levels of aerobically cultured aciduric bacteria (mostly representing lactobacilli) were determined using the Orion Diagnostica Dentocult SM and LB test kits, respectively. RESULTS: There were statistically significant differences after 24 and 39 months between the two xylitol chewing-gum groups and the C group with regard to salivary and plaque mutans streptococci and salivary lactobacilli: the use of xylitol-containing chewing-gums significantly reduced these bacterial scores. The reductions were statistically more significant in the X group than in the XS group. The bacterial scores of groups C and ExC were similar. CONCLUSIONS: Long-term use of xylitol-containing chewing-gum can reduce the growth of mutans streptococci in saliva and dental plaque, and lactobacilli-type bacteria in saliva, even if xylitol is used only on school days. The results also suggest that xylitol gum use can have a long-term, delayed growth-retarding effect on these micro-organisms, since reduced bacterial growth was still observed 15 months following the termination of xylitol use. The results indicate a close biochemical relationship between xylitol and mutans streptococci, and suggest that a similar relationship may exist regarding aerobically cultured aciduric bacteria present in saliva.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Breakthrough Technology That Will Revolutionize The Treatment Of Tooth Decay

Quantum Dental Technologies, a Canadian diagnostic device company, revealed its breakthrough technology which detects and monitors the early onset of tooth decay without the need for dental x-rays. It reduces the number of invasive and painful procedures, and encourages better oral health. Quantum introduced its Dental Caries Detection System prototype, known as The Canary System, at the International Association for Dental Research (IADR) Conference in Toronto, Canada.

"Dentists are limited in their abilities to detect and monitor the early stages of tooth decay with traditional diagnostic tools such as the X-ray and visual examination," said Dr. Stephen Abrams, Chief Executive Officer of the Toronto-based Quantum Dental Technologies and dental clinician. "Now, with this innovative new system that is pain free, non-invasive and provides early caries detection, we can finally move away from intervention, or the filling of cavities, to focus on prevention and actual remineralization or healing of small areas of tooth decay."

The Canary System uses a handheld laser that emits a low-power light to examine tooth surfaces. When laser light is shone onto the tooth, the system measures the level of glow (luminescence) and heat released from the tooth. Laser light interacts differently with healthy teeth than with decayed teeth. By varying the pulse of the laser beam, a depth profile of the tooth can be created to permit detection of decay as deep as 5mm from the tooth surface and as small as 50 microns in size (20 times smaller than a millimeter). With The Canary System, the dentist is able to identify areas of decay much earlier than with current methods.

This technology is based on extensive research including 30 published research articles in peer-reviewed dental and medical journals. The Quantum Dental group is presenting three posters at the IADR conference on this new technology.

The Canary System can scan for caries on smooth enamel surfaces, root surfaces, biting surfaces, between teeth, and around existing fillings. Current methods are not as sensitive in detecting early decay in these areas.

Early detection of dental caries within the enamel shell of the tooth allows applied remineralization therapies to halt or delay the decay. These therapies work to repair the teeth by recrystalizing the minerals onto the enamel surface. If detection of decay is delayed until it has broken completely through the enamel shell, remineralization will not work and a filling is required.

For patients, the placement of a dental filling is an invasive procedure which causes some short term trauma to the tooth. Restorations do not last a lifetime, and there is a cycle of continued placement and replacement of fillings. Each new restoration gets larger, eventually leading to more invasive treatments including crowns, root canal or extraction.

The Canary System:

- Is less invasive and safer than traditional approaches for detecting and monitoring early-stage tooth decay;

- Extends the natural lifecycle of the tooth by providing a chance to remineralize the decayed area;

- Eliminates the need for painful needles and fillings;

- Reduces the cost barriers to dental services by treating small "cavities" before invasive and more expensive technologies are required.

"For dentists, The Canary System will open up a new source of patients needing care," says Dr. Abrams. "Other clinical staff such as dental hygienists or assistants may perform the procedure and administer remineralization treatment. It's a win-win for everybody."

"For the research community, it means a sensitive, non-invasive device for monitoring tooth decay in the lab or in field trials," says Dr. Andreas Mandelis, Professor at the University of Toronto and President of Quantum Dental Technologies. "The technology is robust and will provide the researcher with a real-time view of the lesion without destruction of the tooth."

The Canary System will be in clinical trials for the next 18-24 months with collaborators in both research and clinical settings, and will be ready for market release in 2010.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Topical oral syrup prevents early childhood caries

Toronto, ON, Canada – Dental researchers at the University of Washington have reported a significant reduction of tooth decay in toddlers who were treated with the topical syrup xylitol, a naturally occurring non-cavity-causing sweetener. Their results were presented today during the 86th General Session of the International Association for Dental Research.

In a recent clinical trial in the Republic of the Marshall Islands, children 6 to 15 months old were given oral doses of xylitol in fruit-flavored syrup daily to determine whether the substance can prevent early-childhood tooth decay, or "caries".

Researchers reported that nearly 76% of the children in the group who received xylitol were free of tooth decay by the end of the study, compared with 48% of the children in the group that did not receive the substance.

The Marshall Islands in the Pacific were chosen for the study because it is an area where childhood tooth decay is a serious public health problem. The average child entering Head Start at age 5 has 6.8 cavities—two to three times the rate in a typical mainland community. Researchers came from the Northwest/Alaska Center to Reduce Oral Health Disparities and the Department of Dental Public Health Sciences at the University of Washington, Seattle.

Xylitol can be administered in the form of chewing gum, lozenges, or syrup. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved xylitol's use in food since 1963 and classifies the substance as safe.

According to researchers, at the end of the trial nearly 76% of the children in the study group were caries-free, compared with 48% in a comparable group that did not receive treatment.

Xylitol is a five-carbon sugar alcohol that is used as a sugar substitute.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Tooth decay rates rising among young Canadians

Jordana Huber , Canwest News Service
Published: Thursday, July 03, 2008

TORONTO - Tooth decay among young Canadian children is on the rise and current models to address their oral health lack critical education and prevention components, according to Dr. Ian McConnachie, past president of the Ontario Dental Association.

Provincial dental programs offer mostly stop-gap measures aimed at urgent care rather than early intervention, said McConnachie who is presenting Friday on ways to treat high-risk children at the International Association of Dental Research conference in Toronto.

"Decay in children is the most widespread chronic disease of childhood, much higher than the No. 2 which is asthma," McConnachie said. "Decay rates in kids are rising again where they have been falling for decades."

Read the rest on

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

How effective are dental referrals by primary care physicians?

Young children from low-income families experience high levels of tooth decay and face many barriers to getting dental treatment and preventive services.

Because these children usually visit their pediatrician or other primary care provider far more frequently than a dentist, the primary care medical setting is gaining popularity as a place to provide preventive dental services. Currently, physicians in more than 400 pediatric primary care offices in North Carolina (NC) have been trained to screen for tooth decay, so that referrals for those in need can be made to dentists. This effort is part of a preventive dental program known as "Into the Mouths of Babes" (IMB).

In a study undertaken by investigators at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Duke University, researchers examined factors that lead to dental referrals by physicians and whether these referrals result in dental office visits for children who received IMB services. The study used information from Medicaid reimbursement claims for IMB services provided during 2001 and 2002 and patient records completed by physicians for 24,403 children. The patient records provide information on the child's tooth decay experience, results of a dental risk assessment, and whether the child was referred to a dentist.

The investigators report their results today during the 86th General Session of the International Association for Dental Research. Of the 24,403 children in the study, about 5% had tooth decay, 2.8% were referred to a dentist, and 3.5% made a dental visit before 42 months of age. Among children with tooth decay, 32% were referred, and a higher percentage of children with a referral visited a dentist (35.6%) than those not referred (12.0%). Several factors were associated with whether a child received a referral to a dentist besides the presence of any decayed teeth, including increasing age of child, the availability of a general dentist in the county where the child received IMB services, and whether the child was seen in a practice located in a rural area.

In a second analysis, child tooth decay, a referral, increasing age of child, availability of a general dentist in the county, and having a dental visit prior to the first IMB visit were related to shorter time intervals between the referral and a dental visit.

The authors concluded that referrals by physicians increased access to dentists for children with tooth decay, but use of dentist services for those needing care remained low.-International & American Association for Dental Research

Monday, July 07, 2008

Thinking about Invisalign? What you should know.

Thinking about Invisalign? What you should know.

Why do people hold back from getting braces? Because the tools worn to fix these malocclusions, like gaps, overlaps and rotations, are noticeable and make people’s teeth issue, that much more evident. Though braces turn out wonderful results, people are usually not ready for the multi-year commitment to a metal exterior. Looking unattractive for a couple of years is better than having problems with your teeth forever. But people have waited too long. They are older now, with an important job and a family. Fortunately, there is Invisalign that generates the same results as braces and is invisible and removable. This post will tackle some important questions about Invisalign and lend some important information to anyone searching to upgrade that smile.

The way Invisalign works is a series of snap-on aligners that can be removed and are custom fit to your teeth. Multiple trays get the job done by applying the appropriate amount of force, until you will put a new tray in. The process begins with someone like Dr. Jablow taking pictures of your teeth. Invisalign then computer generates the process of what your teeth will look like when the process is complete. That is awesome technology! Align Technologies, Invisalign’s manufacturer, then takes this computer progression and makes aligners or trays to match the result of the images.

You switch trays every two weeks. You don’t have to go into the dentist to do this; they usually will give you all of your trays and ask you to come in about every 6 to 8 weeks for continual process involvement and to make sure the aligners are straightening properly. Side note: Once your treatment is complete you will be most likely required to wear a “clear” retainer, also made by Invisalign. Dr. Jablow and Green Street Dental will discuss their actual treatment recommendations and progressive dental visits.

The cost of Invisalign is not cheap, but it is comparable to other devices worn to straighten teeth. Dentists will charge different amounts for Invisalign, because Align technology sells individually to each dentist. This causes you to have to shop more and make sure you understand why the dentist charges so much. Treatment runs from about $3700 to $7000, depending on the amount of trays and the treatment time. Invisalign Express is also a great option for milder Malocclusions. In order to find out what your treatment will cost your best bet is to talk to Dr. Jablow or come in for a consultation.

You can take your aligners out when eating, drinking, brushing and flossing. The more people take them out and the less you wear them, the worse off you will be. Sometimes people have had to go back a few trays in their treatment stalling their progression. So don’t make it a habit to take them out and when you do only leave them out for a half hour.

We let you know about cost, the process, the trays and treatment. Now it is time to fix those teeth. Your best bet to see if Invisalign is a good direction for your issue is to have a consultation with Dr. Jablow or a dentist in your area. Keep in mind this is not the holy grail of teeth straightening. There will still be discomfort and visibility. You will have speech issues the first week, and before your mouth gets used to it you will salivate a lot. Consulting your dentist or Dr. Jablow is the best way to resolve these issues and to talk about getting the Invisalign Treatment.

Guest Blog Post from Blake Abel of

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Polished to perfection

Dentists use special polish to make teeth shiny white again. A new measuring technique determines the effect of dental care products and helps to optimize them so they polish the rough tooth surfaces until they are perfectly smooth, but preserve the tooth enamel.

Brush your teeth twice a day! Any child knows these days that regular tooth care is the only way to banish the bacteria that cause caries. Yet sometimes that is not enough. The tooth surface wears down and gets uneven – and the problem is that dental plaque adheres particularly well to a rough surface. Dentists therefore offer professional cleaning services, removing plaque and discoloration with abrasive prophylactic pastes. This renders the tooth surface beautifully smooth, making it difficult for bacteria to gain a foothold. Yet there is a risk that the polishing treatment will also grind away precious tooth enamel and dentin at the exposed necks of teeth. The manufacturers therefore have to find the happy medium when developing their prophylactic pastes: The pastes should be just abrasive enough to remove superficial discoloration and plaque, but preferably not wear down the tooth enamel.

Until now, scientists lacked any realistic objective measuring techniques to assess tooth abrasion caused by chewing and by the effect of toothpastes. A leading manufacturer of dental hygiene products asked the Fraunhofer Institute for Mechanics of Materials IWM in Freiburg, one of whose specialties is the analysis and visualization of surface roughness, to help them develop new prophylactic pastes. The effectiveness of a prophylactic paste has so far been measured by how well the granules that it contains are able to smoothen a rough surface. The test is performed by first roughening tooth enamel or denture materials such as ceramics and titanium to a precisely defined value with an aggressive grinding material. But this does not truly reflect reality, as chewing wears out different materials at different rates. The new measuring method developed by the IWM researchers, a kind of chewing simulation, takes this factor into account. As the experts led by Dr. Raimund Jaeger, head of the Biomedical Materials and Implants department, discovered when comparing pastes and subsequently analyzing the surfaces, some pastes polish the surface but also unnecessarily ablate the tooth material, producing slight grooves on the tooth surface. The ideal paste, on the other hand, polishes so lightly that only the roughness is eliminated while the tooth enamel is hardly ground at all. “Obviously, every case is different,” says Jaeger. “Teeth with particularly heavy plaque or discoloration will need a more abrasive paste.” Normally, however, a gentler prophylactic paste will do the job. Thanks to the IWM researchers, the manufacturer has now been able to optimize the formulation.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Bake, bake, bake a bone

Individual bone implants whose structure resembles that of the natural bone can now be produced quite easily. First, a simulation program calculates the bone’s internal structure and porosity, then a rapid prototyping machine “bakes” the implant from metal powder.

Scientists have learnt many things from nature – for example, the structure of a bone. Bones are very light but nonetheless able to withstand extremely heavy loads. The inside of a bone is like a sponge. It is particularly firm and compact in certain places, and very porous in others. The lightweight construction industry is especially interested in copying this construction method. Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Engineering and Applied Materials Research therefore developed a simulation program that calculates the internal structure and density distribution of the bone material. From this, the scientists were able to derive the material structure for other components. The program simulates how the structure needs to be built in order to meet the specified requirements.

The researchers have now managed to put these simulations successfully into practice. Engineers can produce complex components with the aid of rapid prototyping technology. This involves coating a surface with wafer-thin layers of special metal powder. A laser beam heats – or sinters – the powdered metal in the exact places that need to be firm. “It’s like baking a cake,” says Andreas Burblies, spokesman for the Fraunhofer Numerical Simulation of Products, Processes Alliance. Any remaining loose powder is subsequently removed. “The end product is an open-pored element,” explains Burblies. “Each point possesses exactly the right density and thus also a certain stability.” The method allows the engineers to produce particularly lightweight components – customized for each application – that are also extremely robust. In the meantime, the researchers have further enhanced the process to the point where they can actually change the internal structure of the parts after production by means of precision drilling.

“We can manufacture and adapt the parts exactly as required,” says Burblies. This makes the technique very attractive to a number of industries, among them the manufacturers of bone implants. It is easy to produce individual implants with an internal structure that resembles the patient’s bone. Metal powders made of biomaterials such as titanium and steel alloys make it possible to reconstruct other bone elements, such as parts of the knee. And it goes without saying that the lightweight construction industry, especially aircraft, automobile and machine manufacturers, all benefit from the robust workpieces, as they are better able to withstand stress of every kind

Friday, July 04, 2008

Happy 232nd Birthday for the USA

My we all try to live up to the principals enshrined in the Declaration of Independence.
May everyone have a Happy and Safe 4th of July.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Health Committee: DoH failing to improve dental services

Sound's a lot like the problems here in the US with Medicaid. Only here most dentists don't participate.

Health Committee: DoH failing to improve dental services
The DoH is so far failing to improve dental services, according to a report by the Health Committee

Access to dentistry remains uneven across England and indications are that the new dental contract has so far failed to improve access, according to report Dental Services.
The report makes recommendations including:

* To base PCT dental funding on a local needs assessment, not on a historic basis, and,
* To consider introducing a quality framework-style reward system for dentists who improve the dental health of their patients.

Many dentists fear an exodus from the General Dental Service in 2009 once guaranteed income ends. The DoH claims no such exodus will occur. The committee urges the DoH to monitor closely the career plans of NHS dentists.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

The Apex Forum

The Apex Dental Forum is hosted by John Kanca. It has many relevant topics for dentistry and of course big on materials.

Go check out the Apex Dental Forum