GO DADDY???!!!

7 02 2013

kiss with bar rafa

I know this Go Daddy ad sparked quite a lot of controversy after Sunday’s Super Bowl.  Many were uncomfortable about the “geek” kissing the beautiful woman.  Some were wondering about the appropriateness of that intimacy of affection during prime time.  Frankly, as a dentist, some other thoughts also ran through my mind.  So, with St. Valentine’s day coming up next week, now would be an appropriate time to share these thoughts with you.

Did you know that bacteria can be passed between two people by mouth to mouth contact?  The same goes with sharing your toothbrush.  What about sharing that appetizer? Maybe a little smooching on the couch? Bacteria can be passed between people not just through toothbrushes or other dental implements, but also from shared silverware or any other mouth-to-mouth contact.  Parents and children are not immune either, and bacteria can be passed between them. The family pet may even serve as the source of a bacterial infection.Did you know that the bacteria that causes juvenile periodontitis can be transferred from the infected site to an uninfected site within the same mouth? Even between a husband and wife, there can be bacterial transfer.

Recurring dental infections are commonly caused by infected toothbrushes. In addition to dental problems, a toothbrush may also result in the formation of a bacteremia (bacterial infection in the bloodstream) which, if left untreated, can lead to endocarditis (infection of the heart). A typical toothbrush may be infested with various viruses and bacteria, which can then be transmitted to a new user.

For example, if the toothbrush owner has the herpes simplex virus, 50% of the virus can remain on the toothbrush for up to a week. If you suffer from gum inflammation (gingivitis), you may be able to find relief by using a new toothbrush every two weeks. Wondering if it’s still okay to share a toothbrush with someone you trust?

We now understand that oral infections are not restricted to the mouth but can move through the body and be transmitted that way to other people. You don’t need to become obsessive about your toothbrush, and you can still share a sample at your favorite restaurant, but for your own well-being and that of your family, you should develop a good dental health program.

You can remove 100% of the bacteria on your toothbrush by soaking in an essential oils mouthrinse for 20 minutes. Another good way to clean your toothbrush is ultraviolet light. You may have seen a toothpaste that contains triclosan, a common disinfectant, that claims to clean your toothbrush; however, recent studies* show that this toothpaste is not very effective at removing bacteria.

What are the best ways to eliminate the bacteria that are on your toothbrush? Place them under ultraviolet light, soak them in a mouthrinse with essential oils, or, perhaps easiest of all, replace your old toothbrush with a fresh new one on a routine basis. There’s not much you can do about the kissing since most people won’t want to give that up…just keep an eye on the health of your mate’s mouth!

Have a happy Valentine’s Day!
 

 

Dr Donna Williams

Dr. Williams began her career in the field of dentistry at Howard University and graduated from Baltimore College Dental Surgery/University of Maryland. She is one of a select group of general dentists who have completed a fellowship in Holistic dentistry, and is also certified to use the only FDA approved laser for periodontal surgery. She is passionate about improving the health status of people throughout the community and beyond. Contact her at: Morningside Dental Care.

 





Seafood Mercury Warning!

6 02 2013

sharks against mercury
 
 

Dr Donna Williams

Dr. Williams began her career in the field of dentistry at Howard University and graduated from Baltimore College Dental Surgery/University of Maryland. She is one of a select group of general dentists who have completed a fellowship in Holistic dentistry, and is also certified to use the only FDA approved laser for periodontal surgery. She is passionate about improving the health status of people throughout the community and beyond. Contact her at: Morningside Dental Care.





Are my mercury fillings making me mad?

5 02 2013

mercury fillings

The amalgam or mercury fillings used commonly in dentistry contain up to 50 percent mercury.  Mercury is a toxic heavy metal that most scientists believe can be harmful to your health. The name “Mad Hatter” was inspired by the phrase “as mad as a hatter”.   Mercury was used in the process of curing felt used in some hats, making it impossible for hatters to avoid inhaling the mercury fumes given off during the hat making process; hatters and mill workers thus often suffered mad hatter disease, mercury poisoning causing neurological damage including confused speech and distorted vision  Mercury has been removed from the shelves in our pharmacies and drug stores, because we know the dangers of inhaling mercury.

You can no longer get mercurochrome antiseptic nor mercury thermometers at the pharmacy, because the FDA has deemed the mercury to be hazardous to your health.

The manufacturers of mercury fillings themselves place warning labels on the outside of their containers.  The labels state that mercury fillings are nephrotoxic, neurotoxic.  It states that they are skin sensitizers, that they should not be used in small children, or expectant mothers, the list of warnings goes on and on.

When you have a mercury, or amalgam filling placed, your dentist can no longer use a squeeze cloth to remove the excess mercury before placing a filling.  The amalgamators (what we use to mix the filling together) have to be sealed so that while the mixing process is taking place, the mercury vapors are not released.  An amalgam separator is a special apparatus required to be in place in all dental offices to ensure that as you are removing the mercury fillings, the mercury do not get into the water supply once it is out of your mouth.  In translation, before the mercury filling is placed in your mouth it is toxic, and after it is removed from your mouth, it is toxic.  Why does the ADA say that during the time the fillings are in your mouth, they are safe?

Because it is very challenging to diagnose when a symptom in your body is the result of mercury toxins from your teeth, the ADA still allows for the placement of these fillings in our mouths.  They are also more cost-effective than some of the other materials that we use to restore teeth.

But the bottom line is there are other options, the composite fillings, and porcelain restorations look most natural,and they are a safer option for you.  In future blogs, I will discuss safe protocols for mercury removal.  But suffice it to say, when you go to your dentist to have fillings placed, insist on other options.  They are out there!

 

Dr Donna Williams

Dr. Williams began her career in the field of dentistry at Howard University and graduated from Baltimore College Dental Surgery/University of Maryland. She is one of a select group of general dentists who have completed a fellowship in Holistic dentistry, and is also certified to use the only FDA approved laser for periodontal surgery. She is passionate about improving the health status of people throughout the community and beyond. Contact her at: Morningside Dental Care.





The French Fry – A right of passage?

4 02 2013

baby with french fry

A right of passage:  That first time you take your child on a fast food adventure , isn’t it cute when they take that first nibble on a crispy McDonald’s french fry, often drenched in ketchup.  The child is so adorable, the french fry tastes so good.  Nobody thinks for a moment how we are starting that child down the road towards a possible addiction to unhealthy foods, towards diabetes, obesity and other health issues that will plague them for the rest of their lives.  That first trip to McDonald’s is commonplace in so many households here in the United States, and everywhere around the world, will start them on the path to dental disease  including cavities and gum disease.

The month of February is recognized as Children’s Dental Health Month.  I really think it is important to establish healthy nutritional and oral health routines from the time a baby is an infant.  Here are a few helpful tips that can help prevent dental disease from the start:

From infancy, the routine of cleaning your babies  mouth out after they have milk or formula is important. The sugar in the milk can cause decay from the time the first teeth erupt into the mouth.  It is especially important to refrain from allowing children sip on milk, or juice in a bottle throughout the day and especially at night.  Baby bottle, or nursing bottle caries are really a struggle for the parent and the child, when their baby teeth erupt into the mouth rotten from the sugar in these drinks.

Really pay attention to food labels.  Watch for the hidden sugars in a child’s diet that they might be consuming.  Try and avoid processed foods as much as possible.

Brushing after meals, and especially at bedtimes is critical, as most of the bacteria builds up in ones mouth at night when they are sleeping and their mouth is closed.  Also, ensuring that they develop healthy routines when it comes to brushing and flossing, starts when they are very young.  In fact, one of the best things you can do is let them watch you as you brush and floss so they can emulate some great behaviors.

Sealants, which are a thin plastic coating, a protective layer that should be placed on all of the back teeth, once they have erupted into the child’s mouth, have shown to significantly decrease the amount of dental decay a child will get in the grooves of their teeth.

Finally, soon after the teeth start coming into your child’s mouth, is the right time to take them on their first visit to a dentist.  Let them get used to the environment.  It will help to prevent them from developing a fear of the dentist, that their parent’s might have had.  It will also allow the dentist to evaluate their teeth and make sure to prevent and detect any dental problems before it will arise.  Let your children develop a lifelong healthy relationship with one of the best preventive healthcare providers they will have for their entire lives.

Happy Children’s Dental Health Month!

 

Dr Donna Williams

Dr. Williams began her career in the field of dentistry at Howard University and graduated from Baltimore College Dental Surgery/University of Maryland. She is one of a select group of general dentists who have completed a fellowship in Holistic dentistry, and is also certified to use the only FDA approved laser for periodontal surgery. She is passionate about improving the health status of people throughout the community and beyond. Contact her at: Morningside Dental Care.





2 02 2013

Before you watch all of the commercials during tomorrow’s Super Bowl, please read this post…..

 

Dr Donna Williams

Dr. Williams began her career in the field of dentistry at Howard University and graduated from Baltimore College Dental Surgery/University of Maryland. She is one of a select group of general dentists who have completed a fellowship in Holistic dentistry, and is also certified to use the only FDA approved laser for periodontal surgery. She is passionate about improving the health status of people throughout the community and beyond. Contact her at: Morningside Dental Care.

Dental HealthStyles

Why Do Stars Think It’s OK To Sell Soda

I read this article last week about Beyonce, Mariah Carey, Brittney Spears and their participation in ad campaigns  of sodas and other products that are harmful to our health, however, they create great profit to the celebrities who endorse these brands.  It makes me question what are our core beliefs as a nation?  Are we going to remain true to our core beliefs, or does that take a back seat when it comes to making money?  I understand that we live in the United States of America, in this great consumer driven economy, but, what if we stayed true to our core beliefs?  What if celebrities aligned their core beliefs with opportunities for making money?  I think our country would look a bit different now.  But to take that personally, what if we as consumers stuck to our own core beliefs…

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HAPPY, THANKFUL AND GRATEFUL!

28 01 2013

2011.11.07_13-59-29SG020013-Happy Birthday Cake-1Kg

Ok, this is the mantra that I tell my teenage son all the time.  He should be happy, thankful, and grateful.  That’s our mantra.  We should be happy for all of the many blessings that we have in our lives.  Thankful that although we may not have some material possessions that others may have, it does not matter.  Grateful we have people in our lives that love us, that we have our health, and that we are able to do things that may in some way help to make someone else feel better, or improve their lives in some way are the things that should give us so much joy.  Well, today I was inundated with cakes, cupcakes, flowers, gifts, food, and so many, many wonderful wishes.  Today is my birthday.  Not a reason to blog, no real information today, however, I did want to make sure I told everyone, my wonderful family, my wonderful friends, and my Morningside Dental Care family, our patients and my exceptional staff (woot, woot!!!), that I am so happy, thankful and grateful to have them in my lives, and I cannot express the pure joy that I have of knowing them.  Thank you for making my birthday so very, very special!!!!!!!!  Tomorrow, I will have time to write a blog.

Dr. Donna

ps.  I truly overdosed on sugar today.  Well, here is a dental healthcare tip.  First, drink copious amounts of water as soon as you are finished eating the sugary food.  Make sure you brush and floss to raise the ph of your mouth to decrease the exposure of acids.  Finally, it is much better to eat all of the junk food in one sitting, and then throw the rest of it out, instead of nibbling on it over a few days.  If you eat it at one time, the ph of your mouth only drops one time.  If you eat a little bit over time, the ph of your mouth goes up and down like a yo-yo.  Every time you decrease the ph  you increase the frequency of the acid buildup in your mouth and you are more prone to decay and cavities.  So if you must binge, do it all at once and then get rid of the rest.
 

 

Dr Donna Williams

Dr. Williams began her career in the field of dentistry at Howard University and graduated from Baltimore College Dental Surgery/University of Maryland. She is one of a select group of general dentists who have completed a fellowship in Holistic dentistry, and is also certified to use the only FDA approved laser for periodontal surgery. She is passionate about improving the health status of people throughout the community and beyond. Contact her at: Morningside Dental Care.

 





Total Health and Wellness Begins with your mouth!

27 01 2013

Morningside Dental Care

When was your last dental visit?  Have you noticed the difference?  When you go to the dentist you are no longer seeing a tooth mechanic, with the drill and other scary tools.  Today’s dentist is one of your primary health care providers on the front line of caring for your total health.  The dentists of today are:  concerned with relieving your dental pain; enhancing your overall appearance by performing cosmetic procedures; providing spa type experiences during your visits; and, also evaluating your diet and nutrition and overall condition of your entire body.

If the eyes are the windows to the soul then the mouth is the portal to everything else.  The German physician Reinhardt Voll estimated that 80% of all illnesses stems from the mouth.  Digestive problems, nutrition imbalances, diabetes, some cancers, and other systemic illnesses can be detected during a thorough dental evaluation.

Technology in the dental office has improved significantly in an attempt to improve the experience during your visit. Digital x-rays reduce radiation exposure by up to 80 or 90% from traditional x-rays.  Lasers are used to perform certain dental procedures with more predictable results, more efficiently, and, with less discomfort, such as periodontal gum surgery which in the old way was extremely painful.  The evolution of CAD/CAM technology has reduced the time and number of visits needed to make crowns, bridges, veneers, inlays and onlays.  These restorations look beautiful.  Braces used to be an unattractive proposition especially for adults.  However, Invisalign allows you to straighten crooked teeth and improve your appearance and they are barely noticeable.

So at your next visit, enjoy your regular, thorough cleaning. Whiten your teeth and enhance your smile.  Always remember, your dentist is one of your primary care providers who is committed to improving your total health and well being, as well as your overall dental experience.

Invisalign pictures CERECLANAP
 

 

Dr Donna Williams

Dr. Williams began her career in the field of dentistry at Howard University and graduated from Baltimore College Dental Surgery/University of Maryland. She is one of a select group of general dentists who have completed a fellowship in Holistic dentistry, and is also certified to use the only FDA approved laser for periodontal surgery. She is passionate about improving the health status of people throughout the community and beyond. Contact her at: Morningside Dental Care.

 








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