Posts Tagged ‘Oral Health’

Poor Oral Health Slowed Down 2012 Olympians

Thursday, November 21st, 2013

468230_30211180Winning the gold takes everything. Many Olympians spend decades training for their event to earn the chance to stand above the rest on the podium. While staying in top physical peak is a big priority, is oral health important? Based on the 2012 Olympics, having a healthy smile is a bigger factor than most realize.  

According to a new study led by Professor Ian Needleman at University College London Eastman Dental Institute, more than half of Olympians had poor oral health, and many found it inhibited their performance. Researchers recruited 302 athletes to the dental clinic in the London 2012 athletes’ village during the two-week international event. Those surveyed were from the Americas, Africa and Europe, and represented more than 25 different sports, including track, boxing and hockey. The results were pretty shocking.

Fifty-five percent of the athletes involved showed signs of tooth decay. Cavities, rotting and the beginning of caries were all evident. Of that demographic, 41 percent of the damage was irreversible. More than three-fourths of the individuals suffered from gingivitis, which is the early stage of gum disease. The statistic is dramatically higher than people their same age – around 70 percent, based on the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research.

“Oral health is important for wellbeing and successful elite sporting performance,” explained Professor Needleman. “It is amazing that many professional athletes – people who dedicate a huge amount of time and energy to honing their physical abilities – do not have sufficient support for their oral health needs, even though this negatively impacts their training and performance.”

While almost one in five athletes said their training or performance was negatively impacted by oral health, nearly two-thirds said their poor dental care was affecting their quality of life.

It is clear that oral health and athletic performance are bound together. Gum disease and cavities often trigger pain and inflammation, which may reduce the quality of life and self-confidence of a competitor and therefore lower his or her ability to rise to the occasion. Stunningly, the researchers said that the dental hygiene of the world-class athletes resembled that of people living in disadvantaged populations. Nearly half of the 2012 London competitors said they hadn’t been to the dentist in more than a year.

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Caregiver’s Guide to Seniors’ Oral Health

Wednesday, July 3rd, 2013

Looking AheadIssues with the teeth and gums are often a sign of a larger problem in the body. Whether it shows a poor diet, diabetes or cardiovascular disease, the condition of the mouth is not something to put on the back burner. Research has shown that gum disease left untreated can exacerbate these and other chronic health conditions, and affect one’s overall wellbeing. While sometimes an individual’s poor oral health may be obvious, other times it may only be recognizable by an expert. The mouth is especially important to take note of in seniors or other individuals with serious health conditions.

Regular check-ups with dentists, including cavity treatments, cleanings and X-rays, can help people avoid serious ailments in the mouth. No matter the age, it is important to visit the dentist twice a year for cleanings so that built up dental plaque, which leads to tartar, is cleared away, and any tooth decay is taken care of before it becomes too serious. Unfortunately, not everyone can afford cavity treatments when they are necessary. While it is still very important to make sure that tooth decay is taken care of appropriately, caregivers can learn preventative measures to ensure that these issues are avoided and the oral cavity is clean and fresh.

Check for training sessions
Groups in specific areas may take action to educate the community on proper senior oral health training techniques. For example, the University of Delaware Center for Disabilities Studies and Delaware Division of Public Health will hold training sessions in June for caregivers who are required to maintain someone else’s oral health. This session teaches individuals about daily mouth care, preventative practices, the importance of maintaining a healthy mouth and main causes of oral health problems. Consider researching your area to find a similar informational meeting where you can learn more.

Maintain communication
If you are the caregiver for another person, it is important to make sure you are aware of any aches and pains they have in the mouth. Senior oral health may be hard to maintain, but overlooking a sharp or chronic pain in a tooth or the gums can lead to further issues. Pain is often the sign of tooth decay, meaning there is a high level of bacteria in the mouth which can travel through the bloodstream. This is especially important if bleeding in the gums is noticed, because this is a sign of gum disease and can lead to heart disease.

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Gingivitis (a Major Cause of Bad Breath) May Be Genetic

Wednesday, December 16th, 2009

gingivitis

More people than you may think have gingivitis–up to half of the U.S. population.  Some people do not even realize that they have it, and they might have common symptoms like bad breath, and/or swollen, red and bleeding gums.  Gingivitis can cause complications like heart disease, pre-term birth, and diabetes if it is not treated.  Most of the time, people think it is caused by a lack of proper oral hygiene or the hormonal changes that occur during a woman’s pregnancy (pregnancy gingivitis). 

A new study, on the other hand, shows that genetics actually can play a major part in the onset and healing of gum disease.  The goal of this study was to pinpoint various changes on a molecular level during the onset and healing processes of the disease.  Research showed that ~30% of the human body’s genes are expressed differently during the formation and healing of gingivitis.  How one reacts to gingivitis depends greatly on how the body’s immune system is activated.  The findings of the study enabled scientists to identify certain biological pathways activated by the onset and remediation of gingivitis, including energy metabolism, immunity response, neural processes, vasculature, chemotaxis, steroid metabolism and wound healing.  The information gathered from this study should certainly help scientists and doctors come up with better cures for gingivitis.

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Forget something? Maybe the reason is in your mouth!

Friday, November 13th, 2009

cognitive function

Did you know that Alzheimer’s disease, stroke, diabetes, and heart disease, can be linked to poor oral health? According to extensive research, various health issues like the ones mentioned can be related to one’s oral hygiene. This is why it is important to brush and floss regularly, as well as visit the dentist for regular checkups.

Researchers have found recently that gum disease can influence brain function in a negative way: gum disease can cause inflammation throughout the body, in turn causing a loss of mental function.

In a study of people ages 60 and older, those with the highest levels of the gum disease-causing pathogen were 3X more likely to have difficulty with verbal memory tests, like recalling a three-word phrase after a period of time. Also, adults with the highest levels of this pathogen were twice as likely to fail three-digit reverse subtraction tests and verbal recall tests.

In the study, the researchers mentioned that there are no epidemiological studies that have shown the relation between periodontitis and cognition, despite the link between periodontitis with stroke and the risk factors of stroke and dementia. However, evidence supports there being a relation between poor oral health and incident dementia. It can be expected that there will be more tests done on this topic in the near future.

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Gingivitis

Friday, October 23rd, 2009

gingivitis

From the Desk of Dr. Harold Katz

Most of the time I write about bad breath. However there are other oral care issues which have to be addressed on a daily basis to make sure your mouth stays in tip top shape. As your ‘virtual dentist’ I want to cover some of these other topics in upcoming emails to make sure you are well informed about staying your healthiest.

The topic I’d like to touch on today is gum care. Do you see occasional gum bleeding when you brush?  The dreaded ‘Pink in the Sink’? Did you stop flossing because it caused extreme bleeding and irritation? Have you observed gum recession that has continued to get worse over time?  These are signs of gingivitis, and they need to be addressed quickly before becoming a serious problem.

Over time, food particles and other proteins collect in pockets between your teeth and gums. This dark, moist, food laden area becomes a great place for bacteria to live and feast. As their colonies grow and thrive, they irritate your gums and force them to recede down the tooth root. As you floss or brush the irritated gum tissue will bleed and even potentially ooze, becoming inflamed and painful. This irritated tissue will recede, causing root exposure, giving bacteria access to the root for lasting and permanent damage. Bleeding gums can even create opportunity for bacteria to get into the bloodstream leading to far more serious issues like heart disease.

Gum disease is a remarkably common condition, afflicting over forty percent of the adult population. While advanced cases do require the attention of a specialist and dental visits to properly treat, most common cases are relatively mild and can be treated easily with an over the counter medicated oral hygiene regimen. Treating gum disease before it becomes advanced is crucial, as dental treatment for neglected gums is unpleasant and extremely expensive.

I created my PerioTherapy formulas for this very reason : to treat gingivitis and gum disease before it gets out of hand and requires injections or surgery to fix. PerioTherapy uses the power of CoQ10, Tea Tree Oil, and my own proprietary and patented formulas to combat germs at the gumline and strengthen gum tissue, effectively eliminating “pink in the sink.” I perfected PerioTherapy for over a decade in my own practice before making it available to the public. Since then I have sold millions of bottles and tubes in Europe and the US to patients suffering from gum bleeding and irritation. Their reviews have been remarkable, with many patients saying not only have their gums become healthier and stronger but that their dentists have been incredibly pleased with the strides they have made since using PerioTherapy on a daily basis.

If you do suffer from gum issues such as pain, swelling, bleeding, or recession I would recommend you try PerioTherapy for yourself for 30 days. See if this patented process works as well for you as it has for the tens of thousands who are now loyal users. If you don’t see an improvement in your gums in that short time send the products back to me for a full refund.

Yours in good health,
Harold Katz, DDS

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