296 Lowell St., Andover, MA 01810, (978) 475-2431

Archive:

Our BlogFacebookTwitter

 
Findatopdoc Top Doctor Badge

 

 



 

Posts for: March, 2015

By Advanced Dental Concepts
March 25, 2015
Category: Oral Health
Tags: fluoride  
UnderstandingtheLatestNewsonFluoride

Guidelines regarding the concentration of fluoride in water have recently been changed by the US Government's Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). These agencies recommended a reduction of fluoride in water supplies to 0.7mg/L, modifying the original recommendations provided in 1962 by the US Public Health Service.

What is fluoride, and why add it to water supplies?
Fluoride is a chemical form of fluorine, a naturally occurring element. For decades, scientists have carried out studies on the effects of fluoride in water, and they have proved that fluoride strengthens tooth surfaces and makes them resistant to decay. A fluoride concentration of about one milligram per liter (1 mg/L), or 1 part per million (1ppm), in the water supply is associated with substantially fewer cavities. This concentration of fluoride (equivalent to a grain of salt in a gallon of water) has been found to have no negative health effects.

The Center for Disease Control (CDC) says that fluoridated water is one of the ten most effective public health measures of the 20th Century. The optimal amount of fluoride necessary to make teeth resistant to decay turns out to be between 0.7 and 1.20 milligrams per liter (mg/L). A certain amount of fluoride occurs naturally in water supplies, and communities have added fluoride to bring the amount up to the optimal recommendations.

How does fluoride you drink get into your teeth?
The fluoride you drink in your water is deposited in your bones. Bone is an active living substance that is constantly broken down and rebuilt as a normal body process. As this happens the fluoride is released into the blood, from which it can enter the saliva and act on the tooth surface.

What about fluoride from other sources?
Americans now have access to many sources of fluoride in addition to the water they drink. These include foods, beverages and toothpaste. As a result, dentists have begun to notice an increased prevalence of a condition known as Dental Fluorosis.

What is Dental Fluorosis?
Dental Fluorosis can occur when teeth, particularly in children, receive too much fluoride. This condition is a mottling or uneven staining of the tooth surface enamel. There may be small white spots or extensive brownish discolorations. The mottled enamel is still resistant to decay, but it may be unattractive in appearance.

What is the idea behind the new guidelines?
With the new guidelines, fluoride is kept at the lower end of the scale of the optimal concentration for strengthening teeth against decay. At this end, there is room to add consumption of fluoride from other sources such as foods or toothpaste. In short, it is the best of both worlds.

Contact us today to schedule an appointment to discuss your questions about fluoride. You can learn more by reading the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Fluoride & Fluoridation in Dentistry” and “New Fluoride Recommendations.”


By Advanced Dental Concepts
March 20, 2015
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: Nitrous Oxide  

OrthodonticsIf you are anxious or fearful of dental work, you may be looking for a solution to help calm your nerves. Many dentists offer laughing gas, more formally known as nitrous oxide, to help their patients relax. But does laughing gas really work for most people? Here are some answers to the most frequently asked questions about laughing gas, from Advanced Dental Concepts in Andover, MA.

What is Laughing Gas?

Laughing gas, or nitrous oxide, is a breathable gas that has no smell, no color, and will not irritate the lungs. In the late 1700's, a scientist found that breathing nitrous oxide helped to reduce pain and caused a pleasurable sensation.

Is it Safe?

Nitrous oxide alone is known to be safe to breath for short periods of time. When mixed 50/50 with oxygen, a combination known as "gas and air," the pairing makes it safer for much longer periods of time. Gas and air is so safe and effective that some hospitals offer it as a pain relief option for childbirth.

What Does Laughing Gas Feel Like?

Nitrous oxide is said to induce a state of euphoria for patients. This can be especially helpful for those who are nervous of dental procedures. It works within a few minutes to relieve pain and induce relaxation. The best part is that it doesn't cause a hangover because the gas leaves the blood stream within minutes.

Are There Disadvantages?

One of the few disadvantages of laughing gas is that not every dentist offers it, so if it's important to you, be sure to seek out a dentist who has nitrous oxide on their menu of services. Advanced Dental Concepts in Andover, MA offers laughing gas to help relieve anxiety. But not everyone is a candidate for laughing gas. If you are unable to breathe through your nose, this may cause an issue with administering the gas.

If you fear the dental chair, laughing gas can be the perfect solution to ease your pain and your worries. Look for a dentist in your area who offers nitrous oxide. No need to fear any longer. Schedule your dental visit today with Advanced Dental Concepts in Andover, MA.


By Advanced Dental Concepts
March 10, 2015
Category: Oral Health
AWake-UpCallinMajorLeagueBaseball

What would it take to get you to give up tobacco? For major league baseball player Addison Reed, it took the death of his former coach, Tony Gwynn. Gwynn, a Hall-of-Famer who played for the San Diego Padres in addition to coaching at San Diego State, was just 54 years old when he died of oral cancer. As soon as Reed heard the sad news, the Arizona Diamondbacks’ relief pitcher says he knew what he needed to do: He took every can of smokeless tobacco he owned and dumped them all in the trash.

“It’s just become a habit, a really bad habit,” Reed told an interviewer at MLB.com. “It was something I always told myself I would quit.” But quitting took him many years — in fact, Reed admitted that he first started using smokeless tobacco as a junior in high school.

People begin using tobacco — in the form of cigarettes, cigars, pipes, or smokeless types (snuff, chewing tobacco, or dip) — for a variety of reasons. One major draw is that they see others doing it. And, while smoking is prohibited in most all Major League venues, the use of smokeless tobacco has remained fairly widespread.

Smokeless tobacco isn’t a safe alternative to cigarettes. According to the National Cancer Institute, it contains 28 carcinogenic agents. It increases the risk not only for oral and pancreatic cancer, but also for heart disease, gum disease, and many other oral problems. It’s also addictive, containing anywhere from 3.4 to 39.7 milligrams of nicotine per gram of tobacco — and its use has been on the rise among young adults.

But now the tide may be turning. After Addison Reed’s announcement, his former college teammate Stephen Strasburg (now a pitcher for the Washington Nationals) resolved that he, too, would give up tobacco. “[The] bottom line is, I want to be around for my family,” said Strasburg. Mets left-hander Josh Edgin has vowed to try quitting as well. It’s even possible that Major League Baseball will further restrict the use of smokeless tobacco at games.

What does this mean for you? It may just be the opportunity you’ve been waiting for… to stop using tobacco. Dentists have seen how quickly oral cancer can do its devastating work — and we can help you when you’re ready to quit. The next time you come in for a checkup, ask us how. Your teeth and gums will thank you — and your family will too.