Category Archives: New Technology

Could chewing gum help dectect infections in implants?

gumThe newest addition to your dentist’s grab bag of goodies might soon be gum. European scientists describe the development of a chewing gum that detects oral infections Tuesday in Nature Communications. The tech could prove particularly useful for diseases that present with minimal to no symptoms.
“It’s a great screening tool to help people test their health status easily,” Lorenz Meinel, a pharmacist at the University of Würzburg in Germany and senior author of the study, said.
From cavities to gingivitis, oral infections are widespread — 15 to 20 percent of middle-aged adults have gum disease — especially for people with dental implants. Dental implants stabilize crowns, dentures and bridges. While useful for the 30 percent of people over age 65 without teeth, the implants can become infected with bacteria and cause peri-implant disease. Constant prescription of antibiotics could be used for treatment, but Meinel said the tactic is impractical because peri-implant disease develops over a long timeframe (5 to 10 years). So he pivoted to the underlying problem. People do not often sense pain with dental implants, so infected gums go unnoticed. Meinel needed an alternative way to get patients to sense their illness. Luckily, a mouth comes with one of the best detectors on the planet: the tongue.

The tongue is highly sensitive to taste, and a vigilant monitor of your mouth’s chemistry. With this in mind, Meinel and his team designed a disease-sensing gum that capitalized on taste as its readout.
The taste alarm in the gum is a compound called denatonium — the most bitter substance known. As an evolutionary signpost for poisons, people are particularly sensitive to bitterness. The denatonium is diluted in the gum, but is still awfully bitter, Meinel said.
The researchers attached this denatonium to a biological tripwire — a molecule that gets chopped up by enzymes in the saliva of patients with peri-implant disease.
In healthy saliva, the biological sensor and denatonium are tasteless and do not dissolve. But, if peri-implant disease enzymes are present in the saliva, they chew away the sensor and expose the denatonium and bitter flavor.
To test its effectiveness, Meinel and his team mixed their sensor with saliva from people with peri-implant disease or saliva from asymptomatic patients with at least one dental implant. After only five minutes, peri-implant disease saliva released nearly three times more bitter compound than spit from healthy subjects did.
The researchers tested the bitterness of their chewing gum to see how folks might tolerate the taste. Rather than submit patients to a gross tasting excursion, the team measured the bitterness released by their chewing gum with an electronic tongue. This instrument senses sour, salty, umami and bitter flavors with electronic taste buds and measures the intensity of those flavors too. The researchers found the bitterness released by their chewing gum sensor was less than half (40 percent) that of denatonium alone.
Meinel and his team plan to try the gum in real people soon, but in the meantime, they are working on gum-based sensors for other infections, including ones to distinguish strep throat from sore throats caused by the flu.

 

New advanced service for our patients- Laser Bacterial Reduction

Our team is constantly learning and striving to advance the standard of patient care in our office.  As such we have recently added a new procedure to help fight periodontal disease, laser bacterial reduction(LBR).

Understanding of periodontal disease has increased greatly over the last few years, and we know that this disease is a bacterial infection in the gum tissues around the teeth.  We now not only treat periodontal disease with the removal of mechanical irritants and disease tissue with your periodontal cleanings, but are also addressing the underlying infection that causes it with LBR.  We recommend that our periodontal patients have their teeth and gums decontaminated with the diode laser during their cleaning appointments for three major reasons:

  1. To reduce or eliminate bacteria from your mouth getting into your blood stream
  2. To prevent cross contamination of infection in one area of your mouth to other areas
  3. To kill periodontal disease bacteria and stop the infection before they cause physical destruction or loss of bony support around your teeth.

The laser bacterial reduction (LBR) process is painless and normally takes about 5-10 minutes. We highly recommend you take advantage of this service at your next visit.

Spinach and Garbanzo Beans

Ingredients

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 onion, diced
1 (10 ounce) box frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained well
1 (12 ounce) can garbanzo beans, drained
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt
Directions
1.Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium-low heat. Cook the garlic and onion in the oil until translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in the spinach, garbanzo beans, cumin, and salt. Use your stirring spoon to lightly mash the beans as the mixture cooks. Allow to cook until thoroughly heated. Serves 4
Nutritional Information
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 169 | Total Fat: 4.9g | Cholesterol: 0mg Powered by ESHA Nutrient Database

Comfortable Anesthesia–“The Wand” is Here!

I continually monitor and assess the advancing state of the art in Dental technology and, when warranted, I will introduce especially beneficial additions to patient care.

I am pleased to have begun using a truly wonderful device – the Wand handpiece.  Using this computerized tool has meant providing local anesthetic injections of all types with true ease – and most importantly, to the complete comfort of my patients. I hold the Wand like a pen, and it offers unmatched tactile feel and ease of control, absent the usual muscle fatigue that eventually occurs with a traditional syringe. The Wand now makes giving an injection one of the simplest tasks I do for each patient.