With our sunniest months ahead of us in Texas, ultraviolet exposure is at an all time high. We are exposed to it on our way to work in the car, on a walk in the park, and especially at the beach. Exposure without protection increases the risk of skin cancer exponentially.The UV rays can also damage our skin and cause it to form wrinkles.
Recent studies show that applying sunscreen daily can be more motivating than just reducing the risk of skin cancer; applying sunscreen daily also slows aging. A study conducted in Australia tracked a sample of 900 people under 55. It compared a group that was instructed to apply sunscreen daily on their hands to the other group that was instructed to apply sunscreen to their hands as they deemed it necessary. Participants had casts made on their hands to measure fine wrinkles to measure sun-induced aging. After 4 1/2 years, the results showed that those who religiously applied sunscreen on their hands had fewer wrinkles (24% less skin aging) than those who applied sunscreen every so often.
Dermatologists strongly recommend applying a facial moisturizer with at least SPF 15 to reduce the risk of skin cancer and hinder aging.
A Texas A&M researcher may have made significant improvements to diagnosing oral cancer. Currently, physicians must surgically remove tissue through a process called a “biopsy”. The limitations with this process is that it relies on the naked eye to look for problematic areas that warrant a biopsy. This can be tricky since a patient’s mouth can manifest lesions that may be both benign or precancerous.
The noninvasive oral cancer diagnosis avoids the biopsy by combining two types of technology: “fluorescence lifetime imaging (FLIM)” and “confocal microscopy”. FLIM images large areas of oral tissue with UV light to show signs of molecular changes associated with cancer and precancer. Thus, FLIM can be used for screening. Confocal microscopy on the otherhand, is used more for diagnosis. This examines the morphological features of tissue, assessing whether the tissue is cancerous or not.
While this diagnostic procedure is still in the works, it promises improvements for oral cancer diagnosis in the future.
These days, there are more functions for teeth than just chewing food. We use them to smile, a universal symbol of acceptance, and to some extent, these days teeth are valued as a status symbol. Here are 6 of the Biggest Trends in Dentistry of 2013 (one of which we offer, can you guess which one?)
1. Teeth Jewelry:
Small glass crystals made of white gold or gold jewels bonded to the enamel of the tooth are trending across North America. The jewels are harmless on the tooth if applied properly by a dentist, and celebrities like P!nk have sported her teeth jewelry on the red carpet.
Grills are often worn by hip-hop artists and other genres of celebrities to symbolize status. Grills are typically mae of platinum, gold, or silver, and can be adorned with flashy gems. They have been popular in certain cultures since the 1980′s.
Across Japan, the “snaggletooth” is a current fad. It’s popularity has been attributed to the recent trend of Japanese women wanting to look more plain and accessible for potential suitors. While Americans will shell out money for perfectly straight teeth, Japanese women will do the opposite for an imperfect smile.
4. Tooth Regeneration
Dental offices across America have started incorporating machines that can make crowns on site using CAM (Computer-Aided Manufacturing. These machines allow dentists to install the crown the same day instead of waiting 2-3 weeks to have a crown made at the lab.
5. Teeth Tattoos
Teeth Tattoos, also known as “dental art”, are custom decals designed for dental crowns or other artificial teeth. They won’t work on natural teeth because the drilling process would be very painful.
6. Face Lift Dentures
The trend we offer! Featured as one of the latest anti-aging treatments, Face Lift Dentures do not involve harmful facial injections or risky surgery! We’ve designed dentures that re-align your jaw and facial muscles to give the appearance of a wrinkle-free face.
Summer is here and that’s a reason to smile! Whitening treatments are in demand for the season and there is much debate about in-office procedures versus at home treatments. In short, yes, both options work, but it depends on what you’re looking for. Whitestrips work for removing surface stains. Bleaching the enamel with bleach trays physically changes the color of the teeth’s underlying structure while removing stains from the enamel as well. The difference between the strips and bleaching trays is that the strips don’t get every nook and cranny. Teeth are translucent and trays can address both sides of the tooth, while strips only take care of the front. In-office procedures penetrate deeper to whiten teeth. At our office, we use a process called, “Zoom”. In short, whitening strips can be used for touching up, but long term effects are better seen with bleaching trays and in-office procedures!
Studies show that there is a way to “Eat for your Teeth”. The following is an excellent way to promote oral health and munch on yummy foods:
1.Cheese: It is low in sugar and acid and high in calcium. Cheese also contains the protein “casein” that fortifies the tooth’s surface.
2.Sugar Free Gum: The sugar replacement, “xylitol” prevents harmful bacteria from degrading enamel. When you’re in our office, be sure to pick up a handful of our Spry sugar-free gum!
3.Celery: Celery contains a lot of fiber which helps whisk away plaque!
4.Pears: Also another food that is rich in fiber to help combat plaque
5.Tap Water: Tap water can contain fluoride which helps remineralize teeth and prevent decay!
6.Yogurt: Yogurt is another food that contains “casein” to fortify the tooth’s surface
7.Sesame Oil: Studies show that sesame oil helps remineralize tooth enamel. Washing with sesame oil can actually be as effective as Chlorhexidine in reducing plaque!
Keep these foods in mind the next time you’re making your grocery list!
They look like Easter eggs!
One of our interns tried out a recipe to make homemade lolipops called, “Jollypops”. The recipe was taken from Family Fun magazine and they made perfect Easter goodies for our office. The idea is they come out looking like Easter eggs. Try it out for yourself! (Just be sure to brush your teeth really well afterwards!)
Place 3 Jolly Rancher hard candies side by side on a baking sheet that’s been covered with foil then topped with parchment paper.
Leave space on the sheet for a lollipop stick.
Bake at 275 for 6 minutes.
Remove the pan from the oven and immediately place the stick into the candy, rolling it a bit to ensure a good bond. Let the candy cool and enjoy!
According to recent research, studies show that eating lemons and strawberries can help whiten teeth naturally! On the contrary, dark colored foods like blueberries and dark beverages such as red wine or soda can stain your teeth. Further, fiber filled foods such as celery, apples, and cucumbers help combat plaque!
We just wanted to remind you that Briarcrest Drive will be under construction until at least late August 2013 between Hwy. 6 and Kent Drive, by our office. The project will include adding a right only turn lane as well as installing concrete medians. Consequently, there will be quite a bit of lane closures from now through August. As one of Bryan’s busiest streets, we understand this may affect your travel to our office and encourage you to save a few extra minutes in your day to make it here on time. If you have any questions about finding our office or navigating alternate routes to get here, don’t hesitate to contact our office and we’ll be happy to get you here!
Snoring can not only be a nightly nuisance, it can also indicate a more serious medical condition: Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA). OSA is caused by soft tissue that collapses and blocks the free airflow. When this happens, breathing stops and causes you or your loved one to wake up to breathe. Sleep Apnea is a medical condition over 30% of Americans suffer from, yet only about 10% of sufferers are ever diagnosed. Going undiagnosed can put an OSA sufferer at 3 times a greater risk for premature death.To find out whether or not you have OSA, we encourage you to contact our office so we can send you home with our home sleep study and/or partner you with the Sleep Center at St. Joseph’s.
If you have mild to moderate sleep apnea, the SomnoDent Mouthguard may be an alternative to treating sleep apnea and may allow you to avoid the hassle of using a C-PAP machine. The mouthguard is a customized oral appliance that holds the jaw in a proper position during sleep. This in turn keeps soft tissue from collapsing and blocking airflow. The SomnoDent is known to eliminate both snoring and obstructive sleep apnea in many cases. Dr. Reece has had great results from the oral appliances he has prescribed.
Call our office today and let’s see what we can do to give you a good night’s rest and stop OSA in its track.
With Thanksgiving right around the corner, this time of year always prompts me to think of what I am thankful for. This year I am thankful for my wonderful wife and family, good health, for the continued passion I have for practicing as a cosmetic and restorative dentist and for my one of a kind team. We never take success for granted and want to thank everyone involved.
This past month, my father in law, Howard, passed away peacefully. My family and I are thankful for his life and celebrate the impact he made in the community as well as in our lives. From serving as a deacon to serving as a veterinarian in Bryan, he truly did impact the lives of so many people.
This Thanksgiving season, what are you thankful for?