She laughs at everything you say. Why? Because she has fine teeth - Benjamin Franklin
image by: Milenafoto
"In this, our modern, data-infused era of medicine, science has elucidated connections within our bodies that were not apparent only a few years ago. The Human Microbiome Project and similar initiatives have uncovered compelling evidence that the quality and diversity of bacteria residing inside of us can have a significant impact on both our health and susceptibility to disease. Innovations in cancer, leveraging tools of genomic sequencing, suggest that in many instances, a cancer’s geography within the body may be less important than specific genetic mutations of the tumors.
These insights have given rise to new classes of drugs and therapeutic strategies. And in a recent discovery that upended decades of textbook teaching, researchers determined last year that the brain is directly linked to the immune system by vessels that were previously unknown. This insight might have profound implications for conditions ranging from Alzheimer’s to autism and multiple sclerosis, and is uniting the fields of neurobiology and immunology like never before.
Indeed, the current ethos in the life sciences seems to be one of interdisciplinary connectedness, of silos coming down, of shared observational and computational tools—all giving rise to a more complete picture of human health.
It is thus no wonder that the historical divide between the dental profession and the evidence-based methods of general medicine is finally beginning to crumble. Over the past decade and a half, there has been considerably more awareness than ever before that oral health is indeed a part of our overall health.
This, however, has not been the case through the ages.
Dentistry is an old profession—practiced as early as 7,000 B.C. in the Indus Valley, refined by the Egyptians around 2,900 B.C. and written about by Hippocrates—the father of medicine—who believed that a complete knowledge of the body as a whole was necessary for effective medical treatment. Yet dentistry has traditionally remained a separate discipline from other areas of healthcare.
Of course, the field of oral care has been at the forefront of some of our most successful public health measures, including the introduction of fluoride treatment to prevent dental caries, or tooth decay, which is the most prevalent dental disease, but also a condition that affects most individuals worldwide. And many of us are far more likely to see a dentist than a general medical practitioner—which in an integrated healthcare environment could offer opportunities for general health screenings.
Meanwhile, we are amidst a global oral disease epidemic, and the statistics are startling: nearly 100 percent of adults have had cavities. About one-fifth of middle-aged adults have gum disease so severe that they could lose their teeth—and about a third of the world’s elderly citizens no longer have any of their original teeth.
As research continues to reveal the many ways that the health of the mouth may impact the rest of the body, the implications of this schism between the dental and medical communities take on more serious dimensions. And it is clear that the exigencies of world health would mandate that these boundaries come down.
It was back in 2000 when then-U.S. Surgeon General David Satcher (interviewed in the following pages) prioritized the issue in his landmark report. He called the problems of global oral health “a silent epidemic promoting the onset of life-threatening diseases which are responsible for the deaths of millions of Americans each year.”
Periodontitis—the swelling, bleeding, receding gums caused by some species of bacteria in our mouths—may raise the risk of a number of serious health conditions. That list includes stroke, respiratory illness, and cardiovascular disease. Infection and inflammation in the mouth may also worsen adult-onset (type 2) diabetes or cause premature birth.
Some of these conditions are exacerbated by the body’s continually simmering inflammatory response, as the immune system fights the bacterial invaders in gum tissue. These microbes can also slip into the bloodstream, settling into the arteries around the heart, or may be inhaled into the lungs, causing pneumonia. Intensive research continues to explore the complex associations between periodontal disease, inflammation and various medical conditions.
But oral health is important not just because it is inextricably connected to our overall health, but also because of its social, economic and psychological significance. Consider the story of Laurie Abbott, which was reported in the New York Times a few years back. Abbott has diabetes, a condition that raises the risk of gum disease, and after her husband was laid off from his job, she couldn’t afford dental work. She subsequently lost all of her teeth. “Since I didn’t have a smile,” she said, “I couldn’t even work at a checkout counter.”
On the other end of the generational spectrum, tooth decay can impact children’s academic success: mouth pain from cavities is among the leading reasons that children are absent from school.
But finally, awareness is growing that the mouth is not separate from the rest of the body, and that oral health must be integrated within an overall healthcare plan. Radical changes are happening in education, with medical and dental schools beginning to merge curriculums. Some programs are now educating dentists on medical issues they should be aware of and are also teaching doctors about oral disease.
Healthcare professionals are starting to realize that for those who rarely see a doctor, basic screening for high blood pressure or elevated blood sugar during a visit to the dentist could save lives. In some countries, like Malaysia, dentistry has been integrated within the overall healthcare system.
In an attempt to address the global oral health crisis, governments are working to bring care to the most underserved populations: children, senior citizens, and those who live in remote areas. The focus is on prevention, education and innovative modes of treatment, which experts say will ultimately lower costs. Many countries are sending professionals out into schools, elder care facilities, and launching mobile dental clinics. Dental therapists are increasingly performing cleanings and taking x-rays, while leaving complex, difficult procedures to dentists.
But even within the traditional office paradigm, Millennial Generation dentists are reinventing the practice. They are incorporating exciting new technologies for diagnosis and treatment. Over the next decade, they will rely more and more on teledentistry, smartphone communications, and greater collaboration with colleagues in both dentistry and medicine. Like other areas of health, dentistry is becoming increasingly digitized, flexible and mobile.
Innovations continue to improve diagnostics. Soon, new biologically active fillings may be able to regenerate decayed teeth, and the most effective treatment options may be determined by analyzing personal genetics. If a crown is needed, it may be created on the spot with a 3-D printer...
The future of dentistry looks very different from today, with greater emphasis on prevention that will translate into fewer cavities and less periodontal disease; easier access to care; and shorter treatment time. Much more can be done to improve the state of oral health around the world, but the prediction is that 21st century dentistry will increasingly provide healthy and brighter smiles."
Source: Jeremy Abbate,Sharon Guynup, Oral Health Goes Modern, Scientific American, October 19, 2016.
Demystifying The Most Common Tooth Myths — Enlighten Yourself With The Facts
There is lot of stress and anxiety which surrounds our dental health, and this has given birth to a hell lot of myths which increase our dental woes. Unlike serious conditions like heart diseases, ALS, cancer and Type 2 diabetes which grab the headlines, the relationship between oral health and overall health is often forgotten by most people.
Oral Health Goes Modern
Oral health has a profound impact on general health and welfare, and yet dentists and doctors continue to operate in silos. What will it take to bring the fields together and start improving lives?
The Future of Oral Health
A healthy mouth makes for a healthy body. If that sounds trite, consider that in recent decades scientists have connected poor oral health to cardiovascular disease, stomach ulcers, pneumonia, malnutrition, and a host of other serious ailments. The implications of this health-of-mouth to health-of-body connection are profound, and they are prompting tectonic shifts in treatments, technologies, education and policy.
The Human Oral Microbiome
The human oral cavity contains a number of different habitats, including the teeth, gingival sulcus, tongue, cheeks, hard and soft palates, and tonsils, which are colonized by bacteria. The oral microbiome is comprised of over 600 prevalent taxa at the species level, with distinct subsets predominating at different habitats.
Why going to the dentist still seems stuck in the Stone Age
Who among us hasn’t had this thought, as a dentist industriously and cheerfully chisels and scrapes and drills away at your teeth: Surely there is a better way.
When anthropologists last month discovered evidence of dental handiwork in a 14,000-year-old tooth, the surprising thing about it wasn’t the fact that people in the Stone Age had cavities and tried to do something about them. It was the fact that the procedure seemed so… familiar.
You Probably Don’t Need Dental X-Rays Every Year
All X-rays can be harmful, though the radiation dose of bitewings is relatively low. Of all the medical radiation patients receive, dental X-rays account for less than 3 percent. But the harm from radiation is cumulative.
The 1Dental.com blog aims to keep people up to date on dental and health news and helps readers learn about saving money on oral care. The 1Dental blog is your source for learning how to keep your mouth healthy.
Welcome to our online service for both dentists and dental patients. Search the dental directory to review American dentist profiles and find local services for tooth whitening, general and cosmetic dentistry, dental implants, veneers, dentures, teeth cleaning, family dentists as well as dentistry for children.
Information about teeth whitening, cosmetic dentistry, dental products and insurance, dental procedures and treatments, and oral coditions for consumers.
This is a site for adults who have orthodontic braces, or who are considering getting braces to straighten their teeth. Parents of children in braces may also find the information on this site helpful. This is not a fetish site
Site covers general dental care, orthodontics, journals and dental insurance.
Featuring more than 200 clips, our dental video library is one of the largest free resources for dental patients. Checkdent brings you easy-to-understand dental health advice you can depend on. Our dental videos are produced by experts, according to the strict guidelines of Evidence-Based Medicine (EBM) where applicable. Browse our collection of dental videos and choose to watch them as 3D animations or real-life video clips.
Colgate Oral and Dental Health Resource Center.
Consumer Guide to Dentistry
Welcome to Consumer Guide to Dentistry! This comprehensive educational resource was created to help you better understand and navigate the many treatments and procedures available in dentistry to manage oral health, and restore and enhance your smile.
Consumer Guide to Dentistry includes up-to-date, dentist-reviewed information about treatment candidacy, cost and recovery, helping to provide visitors with appropriate expectations, and a greater understanding of what's involved in each dentistry procedure.
Discussing the latest in dental technology.
Dental Fear Central
Dental Fear Central - the world's biggest Dental Phobia, Dental Fear and Dental Anxiety Resource.
Are you terrified of dentists, and find it impossible to contemplate going — even to the point of wishing you’d rather be dead? You are not alone!! Or do you have specific fears or extreme anxiety whenever you go to the dentist? You’ve come to the right place.
Dental Health Online
With Dental Health Online, find information on dental procedures and preventive treatment, cosmetic dentistry, oral health recommendations, dentistry news, answers to common oral health questions, and newsletters about popular dental topics.
Dental News Official Page. The Middle East and North Africa leading Dental Magazine keeps you up to date!
Provides users with the most comprehensive, cutting-edge information on all things dental. Whether you're a dentist, a member of an office staff, or a patient - we have what you're looking for.
Your one stop source to find the dentist of your choice,
Dental Schools, Dental Links and Dental Web Design.
Our goal is to provide 100% satisfaction to customers and patients. We strive to bring you the easiest, yet highest quality dentist matching service that is absolutely free to use. We also provide outstanding telephone support for your dental needs.
DentistDirectory.com is the nation's leading dentist directory, connecting you directly with the dentist's office for a dental appointment when you are in need of dentistry or have a dental emergency
Dentistinfo.com is one of the most user-friendly, noticed and best listing and dental information site out on the web.
Dentistry.com is the Internet's premier dental resource for consumers and dentists. We provide a wide variety of dental articles that cover all forms of dentistry, including cosmetic dentistry, restorative dentistry and pediatric dentistry.
Dentists.com was created to bring together patients and dentists quickly and easily. Our easy to use search engine allows the patient to quickly retrieve a list of dentists in their geographic area. Our insurance center and resource areas help educate the patient in the many details of dentistry.
The World of Dentistry Online Floss.com is the leading Internet oral health care portal providing the most trusted, comprehensive, accurate and up-to-date information on oral health topics and access to products and services for both the consumer and professional.
Got Teeth? A Survivor's Guide
From babies to boomers, Got Teeth? A Survivor’s Guide illustrates the importance of the mouth/body connection and good oral health for our overall well-being.
Find out how to take optimal care of your teeth and gums. GUM has specialty oral care products designed to meet the needs of those with healthy gums, kids, implants, braces, bridges, periodontal disease, and diabetes.
HIVdent is a not-for-profit coalition of concerned health care professionals committed to assuring access to high quality oral health care services for adults, adolescents, and children living with HIV disease.
Welcome to Incisors and Molars — the leading dental portal which is designed to act as a complete Oral Guide.
The whole reason why we have started this website is to provide as much dental information as we can. Right from little tidbits on things like how to take care of your oral hygiene to the new painless laser technique used for treatment of cavities. Creating and promoting dental awareness is a key objective of the website.
Mouth Cancer Foundation
The Mouth Cancer Foundation was established in June 2004 to be a professional support organization solely dedicated to supporting people with mouth, throat and other head & neck cancer face the crisis of cancer.
What does it take to get a bright smile?
How do I keep my bright smile?
Check out our full list of online and offline games that will teach you how to take care of your teeth and lead you to that perfect smile!
Welcome to MouthHealthy, an award-winning website created by the American Dental Association. Your oral health is an important part of your overall health, and we hope that you and your whole family will find MouthHealthy informative, fun and easy to use. Health information changes all the time and this website will too. Please check back often to find answers to all your dental health and oral care questions so we can help you be Mouth Healthy for Life.
Free Dental Information about Dental Infections, Dental Procedures, and all your Questions Answered! The mission of this website is to inform the general public about standard dental procedures in order to allay anxiety, and allow them to make informed decisions about their treatment. We cover everything from dental infections to extractions, to replacing and restoring teeth.
The OraMedia site is a compilation of material gathered from a variety of sources, originally based on the works of Dr. Robert O. Nara. This material is provided to assist in arming individuals with the tools to assume greater responsibility for their own oral health.
Learn about gum disease, root canal alternatives, tooth decay, cavities, periodontal disease, gingivitis, plaque, tarter, dentists, preventive dentistry, in-home dental care and oral hygiene.
Dental Advice from Seattle Area Dentist E Janson DDS with answers to some common dental questions.
Simple Steps to Better Dental Health
Simple Steps To Better Dental Health is a comprehensive dental-information website developed and owned by Aetna Inc. The site is hosted by Aetna and not by any third-party website on which it is found.
Bank the valuable stem cells found in baby teeth and wisdom teeth...StemSave offers you and your family a unique stem cell recovery and cryopreservation service, in the event of future injury or disease.
Turning magic into smiles...Be true to your teeth or they'll be false to you.
WorlDental.org is popular dental health web magazine created for people who take care of their smile, oral and overall health. Magazine writes about dental care and hygiene, it discovers new dental products, it posts last dental news and presents professional dental clinics abroad.
American Association of Orthodontists
On this site, you can learn about orthodontists--specialists in the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of dental and facial irregularities. The correction of tooth and jaw alignment results in a healthy, attractive smile that's good for life.
Australian Society of Orthodontics
In most cases, orthodontic treatment is commenced as soon as the last baby tooth has been shed. This usually occurs in the early teens. In some cases, it is an advantage to start just before the last baby teeth are shed.
In the past, orthodontic treatment was generally restricted to children. However, the basic process involved in moving teeth is the same at any age and orthodontic treatment is also successful for adults.
British Dental Health Foundation
The Foundation is the leading UK-based independent charity working to bring about improved standards of oral health care - both in the UK and around the world.
Canadian Dental Association
Oral health problems such as oral pain, missing teeth or oral infections can affect a person's physical, mental and social well-being. Oral disease, like any other disease, needs to be treated. Keeping a healthy mouth is an important part of leading a healthy life.
Everyday Health's dental health center covers multiple areas including a dental health support group.
It's important to take care of your mouth and teeth starting in childhood. If you don't, you could have problems with your teeth and gums - like cavities or even tooth loss.