Category Archives: Uncategorized

Can I chew gum?

Many of our patients ask if they can chew gum and the answer is yes, as long as it is one with the ADA seal.  When you are short on time and can’t brush after a meal chewing gum can help to rid teeth of debris by increased salivary flow in the mouth.  There are 2 catches, it must be a sugar free gum that is ADA approved and we recommend chewing no longer than 20-30 minutes.  Why only 20-30 minutes you gum lovers ask- well many times the acting of chewing gum can make issues with TMJ flare up by the increased movement of your jaw.
A company earns the ADA Seal of Acceptance by producing scientific evidence that demonstrates the safety and efficacy of its product, which the ADA Council on Scientific Affairs carefully evaluates according to objective requirements- so chew away, sparingly!orbit

Hookah’s Not As Safe AS You May Think

vapor_pen

Many Hookah and Vapor Smokers believe that they are safer using these methods than traditional cigarettes- however in recent research and articles published by the JADA- Journal of the American Dental Association, this type of “smoking” is just as bad if not worse- here is a recent excerpt from an article published this past fall…

We found that waterpipe smoking is associated with serious health problems affecting the head and neck region,” said study author Teja Munshi, B.D.S., M.P.H of Rutgers University. “The public needs to know they are putting themselves at risk. They should be made aware of the dangers of smoking hookahs.”

The authors conducted a literature review that focused on waterpipe smoking and head and neck conditions. They found waterpipe smoking to be associated with gum diseases, dry socket, oral cancer and esophageal cancer among other conditions. According to the World Health Organization, smoking a hookah is the equivalent of smoking 100 cigarettes, based on the duration and number of puffs in a smoking session.

“This study sheds light on the common misconception that smoking from a waterpipe is somehow safer than smoking a cigarette,” said JADA Editor Michael Glick, D.M.D. “Whether you are smoking a cigarette, an e-cigarette, a cigar, or tobacco from a waterpipe, smoking is dangerous not only to your oral health but to your overall health.”

 

As always if you have specific questions about Hookahs or Vape Smoking feel free to ask us at your next dental visit with Dr. Mullaney

The Truth about Dental Myths

We loved this article from the Huffington Post and thought we would share it with you!

Did you hear the one about the flying spirit who traded cash for old molars? Myths abound when it comes to dentistry:

• Put an aspirin next to a tooth to treat a toothache:
Don’t — it will burn your gum and do nothing for your toothache.

• Use a hard bristle toothbrush to best remove plaque.
Don’t — the abrasiveness can damage your gum line.

• George Washington’s wooden teeth were prone to termite infestation.
Don’t — believe it; while Washington was an early denture adopter, his false teeth were not made of wood, but merely stained metal and ivory that gave his smile a grainy appearance.

Here are the best of the dental tall tales:

Myth: Baby teeth all fall out eventually so there is no need for dental care for young children.

Fact: Baby, or primary teeth can decay, become infected and painful, if routine dental care isn’t sought early on.

Baby teeth act as space maintainers allowing the permanent teeth to come into the mouth properly. Prematurely losing baby teeth (from decay) could cause teeth to drift and block out permanent teeth from growing in. A child’s first dental visit should take place by age one. Your child’s dentist should be monitoring and discussing with you, your youngster’s diet, hygiene, and oral habits.

Myth: Natural fruit juices won’t cause tooth decay like candy or soda will.

Fact: Westchester County, New York Pediatric dentists Dr. Jeffrey Ginsberg and Dr. Benjamin Dancygier advise on baby teeth and decay:

“Even 6-month-old infants can get decay, from going to sleep with a bottle or constant breast-feeding throughout the night,” says Dr. Ginsberg.

“All juices contain sugar which can cause tooth decay. The only safe drink for children is water,” says Dr. Dancygier.

Myth: It’s best to wait until my child loses all his baby teeth before seeing the orthodontist.

Fact: Waiting until all the permanent teeth arrive can result in two irreversible consequences: the need to extract permanent teeth due to the inability to correct crowding and missing a growth spurt without which extractions or jaw surgery is necessary. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that children see an orthodontist at age 7 for early detection of problems and to assure proper and timely planning for optimal care.

Myth: My child will grow out of it.

Fact: The majority of orthodontic problems do not-self correct.

Myth: The orthodontist will correct this problem with a retainer just worn at night.

Fact: Retainers are removable devices meant to retain, or hold teeth in place not designed to make active corrections. Tooth movement requires at least 20 hours of force applied daily over a period of time for teeth to safely reposition in a stable manner.

Myth: Wisdom teeth will cause other teeth to shift positions after orthodontics.

Fact: It’s a natural assumption to think that wisdom teeth (which commonly erupt in late adolescence) can cause post orthodontic changes, but the real cause of shifting or relapse is a late adolescent growth spurt of the lower jaw for a patient not wearing retainers.

Myth: Once teeth are straightened, no other follow-up is needed.

Fact: Teeth shift over varying degrees over a lifetime. Retainers mitigate these changes and are as important a part of orthodontic treatment as is wearing braces. Your child needs to be an active participant throughout treatment and retention in order to ensure a successful outcome.

Floss Like a Boss!

 

untitledWe thought this recent article from  HealthyWomen.org had some great reminders about flossing and we wanted to share with you- brushing alone does not take care of everything , floss like a boss and see some real improvements with your teeth and gums!

A national survey conducted by Harris Poll for the American Academy of Periodontology (AAP) recently discovered that a lot of us are lying to our dentists. No, it’s not about how much sugar-laden candy we’re eating or how often we brush (or don’t brush) our teeth. It’s about something that potentially has more impact on our health than that.

Twenty-seven percent of us lie about how often we floss.

The reason is fairly simple: People don’t like to floss. In fact, they’d rather wash dishes, clean a toilet or even spend time doing their taxes than floss. The American Dental association reports that only 50 percent of Americans floss daily, 31 percent less than daily and 18 percent don’t floss at all.

But when you consider that flossing helps prevent gum disease and cavities and not flossing is the leading cause of tooth loss in adults, it makes you wonder why more people don’t do it.

Flossing Facts

1. Maybe you’re too tired at the end of the day to bother with flossing. Yet, it doesn’t really matter when you do it. The most important thing is to just do it—once a day. Whether you floss before or after you brush doesn’t much matter, either.

2. Here’s a no-brainer tip for easy flossing: Try storing floss in your car, in your bag or in your office drawer—then break it out when you have time (just don’t floss in public—your friends and coworkers will thank you). There’s no need to floss in front of a mirror, either. (And there’s no need for an excuse if you keep the floss handy and within reach!)

3. Flossing removes plaque from areas between your teeth that your toothbrush can’t reach. If this plaque is not removed, it can eventually harden into calculus or tartar, leading to gum disease. There’s also evidence that periodontal bacteria can attach to the fatty plaques in blood vessels and set off an inflammatory process, which can lead to heart attack or stroke. Other research has shown that infections in the mouth may be associated with diabetes, pneumonia and other health problems.

4. You need not use only dental floss to clean between your teeth. There are other options specifically made for the purpose, like pre-threaded flossers, tiny brushes that can reach between your teeth, pointed rubber tips or wooden plaque removers.

5. Flossing should not be painful. It’s normal for it to be uncomfortable when you first start, but within a week or two, that discomfort should ease.

6. Be aware of flossing too hard—it could damage the tissue between your teeth. But don’t be too gentle either, which might not result in a complete job.

7. Children should start to floss as soon as they have two teeth that touch

Redheads’ and Pain Sensitivity

We found this article via CNN and wanted to share with all of you!

 

(CNN) — Despite two injections of anesthetic, Amy Anderson felt like her dentist was jamming rods into her tooth during a root canal. She writhed in pain as her infected tooth was hollowed with a drill, its nerve amputated, and then sealed.

Studies say redheads avoid dental care after having painful experiences and may require more anesthetics.

Studies say redheads avoid dental care after having painful experiences and may require more anesthetics.

“I knew this time something was wrong. I could feel my lips,” said the Syracuse, New York, resident, who told her dentist the drugs weren’t working.

Her doctor kept assuring her she had given her a proper dose and said: “I’m almost done.”

“I was hurting so bad, I was hitting myself in the stomach,” said Anderson, a redhead. “I almost wanted to hit her.”

Studies have indicated that redheads may be more sensitive to pain and may need more anesthetics to numb them.

New research published in this month’s Journal of American Dental Association found that painful experiences at the dentist might cause more anxiety for men and women with red hair, who were twice as likely to avoid dental care than people with dark hair.

“Redheads are sensitive to pain,” said Dr. Daniel Sessler, an Outcomes Research Department chair at The Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland, Ohio, who is one of the authors.

“They require more generalized anesthesia, localized anesthesia. The conventional doses fail. They have bad experiences at the dentist and because of the bad experiences, they could avoid dental care.”

Sessler, an anesthesiologist, began studying redheads’ sensitivity to pain after hearing chatter from colleagues.

“The persistent rumor in the anesthesia community was that redheads were difficult to anesthetize,” Sessler said. “They didn’t go under, had a lot of pain, didn’t respond well to anesthesia. Urban legends usually don’t start studies, but it was such an intriguing observation.”

This led to two studies. In 2004, research showed that people with red hair need 20 percent more general anesthesia than blonds and brunettes.

A 2005 study indicated that redheads are more sensitive to thermal pain and are more resistant to the effects of local anesthesia.

Researchers believe variants of the melanocortin-1 receptor gene play a role. This MC1R gene produces melanin, which gives skin, hair and eyes their color.

While blond, brown and black-haired people produce melanin, those with red hair have a mutation of this receptor. It produces a different coloring called pheomelanin, which results in freckles, fair skin and ginger hair. About 5 percent of whites are estimated to have these characteristics.

While the relationship between MC1R and pain sensitivity is not entirely understood, researchers have found MC1R receptors in the brain and some of them are known to influence pain sensitivity.

Non-redheads can also carry a variant of the MC1R gene. In this dental study that had 144 participants, about a quarter of the non-redheads had variants of the MC1R gene. These people also experienced heightened anxiety and avoided dental care compared with others who did not have the variant.

There is no commercial test available for variations of the MC1R gene.

After Sessler and his colleagues published the first studies about redheads and pain susceptibility, he received nearly 100 e-mails from redheads around the country who complained of terrible experiences at the dentist’s office.

Dr. Catherine Binkley, an associate professor at the University of Louisville’s School of Dentistry, in Kentucky, also observed the same phenomenon in her 25 years of practice.

Her redheaded patients seemed “anxious and didn’t get numb. It’s a difficult experience for them,” said Binkley, one of the study’s authors.

But this doesn’t seem to affect all people with red hair.

“I have a [redheaded] hygienist that I have to numb up a lot more than normal, ” said Dr. Peter Vanstrom, an Atlanta, Georgia, dentist. “She’s very sensitive. I have another redheaded patient who is tough as nails, but his father is extremely difficult to numb.”

Binkley said the best tip for dentists is to “pay more attention, evaluate everyone for dental anxiety, and ask them about previous experiences.”

“If you know someone’s anxious, do different things,” she said. “Make sure they’re numb before you start working on them.”

Patients who’ve had bad experiences with pain should inform their dentists.

The next phase of research is to evaluate whether more anesthesia is needed for people with red hair and those with variants of the MCR1 gene for dental procedures.

The authors say an unpleasant incident — much like the one Anderson had this January — could cause patients to postpone dental care and exacerbate any problems they might have.

Anderson got a root canal because she dreaded the dentist after a bad experience of getting cavity fillings. Inevitably, Anderson has to return to her dentist to follow up on her root canal and this fills her with apprehension.

“I have wicked dread of the dentist,” she said. “I was up for two hours in the middle of the night because of the dentist.”

Bad breath sends spouse running!

Fennel-Seeds-For-Bad-Breath

Your morning breath sends your spouse running.
It’s not the sexiest thing in the world, but you may be snoring or sleeping with your mouth open. Those who do tend to have dry mouth, which typically lowers the flow of saliva in your mouth—and saliva is responsible for cleaning out food particles and protecting the teeth and gums from bacterial infection, says Alice Boghosian, spokesperson for the American Dental Association and practicing dentist in Chicago.

If you are concerned with morning breath and want to discuss options call our office now to schedule a visit !

As seen in Redbook magazine!

Freedom Day USA HUGE Success!

FreedomDay-40

On Thursday, September 10, 2015 businesses across the United States joined Freedom Day USA, a national Thank You Movement for the members of our military along with Veterans.  Each business donated services in the form of free services, goods, discounts, and various other offers.  Locally, Kathleen Mullaney DDS of Alexandria, partnered with Freedom Day USA to provide free cleanings, x-rays, exams, oral cancer screenings, fillings and extractions to those that serve our country.

FreedomDay-17

Dr. Kathleen Mullaney and her team welcomed many of our nation’s veterans and active duty service members to her practice to provide free dental services. Dr. Kevin Brewer, an oral surgeon from Alexandria Oral Surgery volunteered his services as well. Participants were asked to schedule an appointment in advance and “we were even able to offer walk-in appointments throughout the day into the late afternoon due to our great team support”, says Dr. Mullaney.

 

FreedomDay-44

Alexandria Mayor William Euille dropped by in the afternoon to meet some of the Veterans and give his thanks to Dr. Mullaney and the team for this event. Breakfast and lunch were generously provided by local businesses in Alexandria. Goody bags donated from dental companies and other businesses were given to each patient before they left. Those that came to the practice were elated and very pleased with the services provided – some even decided to make Dr. Mullaney their new dentist! Of the practice’s success on Freedom Day, owner Dr. Mullaney said, “This has been a dream of mine for a very long time. I’m so happy that we made it come true to give back to our deserving service members.”   Dr. Mullaney and team are committed to making Freedom Day USA an annual tradition in her dental office!

FreedomDay-26

 

 

Freedom Day USA-Free Dental Care For Veterans

We are so thrilled to be offering free dental care to our most in need Veterans as part of Freedom Day USA 2015, Thursday, September 10th from 8am – 5pm.  Our office will be giving our Veterans the following services free-

* Cleanings

*Exams

*Xrays

*Fillings

*Extractions

Please call TODAY to make an appointment, sorry, we will not be able to accept walk-ins the day of.  All we need is proof of military service via a valid military ID or DD214 papers.  If you have additional questions please just give us a call!!Print

It’s almost back to school time!

back-to-school-end-of-article

Seems like school just ended for the summer, but the back to school bell will be ringing very soon- here are a few things you can do to help keep your kids’ teeth healthy for when they go back to school! • Plan healthy lunches. Things that are good for teeth include high-calcium dairy products such as milk or cheese; strawberries, which can actually help whiten teeth; high-fiber foods like spinach or beans; and for daily drinks, water. • Re-stock dental supplies. It’s never a bad time to check to make sure you’re all stocked up on dental supplies. It may even be worth it to leave a bit of floss in your kids’ lunches each day, so they can clean their teeth while they’re at school. • Set up a rewards program. If your kids have fallen into bad habits during summer, help refocus them by setting up a rewards program. For instance, brushing their teeth can be worth 15 minutes of video-game time and flossing can be another 15. (This can work well for parents, too, with a little self-discipline.) For now, enjoy the rest of the summer!