10:55 AM

Friday Dental Download: October 17, 2014

This week we learn about a new genetic risk test for periodontal disease, discuss the role of dentists in pain management and addiction and learn that most kids have poor dental hygiene habits. We also introduced our new blog series, don’t forget to check it out! Join the conversation on Twitter using #FridayDentalDL.

1. Study: Most kids’ dental hygiene not good: According to a recent Ad Council study, three out of four parents say their kids forget to brush their teeth, but only 22 percent of parents seem to be concerned about it. This is a big problem with kids grazing on sweet and snacks and sugary and acidic drinks throughout the day. The residue sits in their mouths creating opportunities for tooth decay to set in. Juice boxes, energy and sports drinks, soda, and high carb snacks increase the risk of cavities. For tips for pediatric oral health care visit our oral health library.

2. ADA 2014: Pain management and addiction – the dentist’s role: Pain management, identification of patients at high risk for substance abuse, and utilizing interventions for drug abusers were the focus of a session at the American Dental Association 2014 annual meeting. According to Patrick Sammon, PhD, professor emeritus from the department of oral health science at the University of Kentucky College of Dentistry, about one third of every dentist’s patients (37 percent) have a drug problem. Dentists now have an array of drugs to control pain. If a dentist suspects a patient is abusing drugs, he/she should use the SBIRT method: screen patients, use brief intervention, and refer to treatment. Click here for more helpful tips and information.

3. Athletes’ Teeth May Suffer from high Carb Diets, Sports Drinks and Eating Disorders: We know that sports drinks partnered with poor oral hygiene can often lead to gum disease; however, a recent study shows that high carb diets can also contribute to cavities. Scientists found that a high carb diet – a diet heavily based on refined and processed carbohydrate foods – can lead to tooth decay and gingival inflammation. If you’re an athlete, check your risk for gum disease here.

4. Genetic risk test for periodontal diseases highlighted during ADA annual meeting: Interleukin Genetics, Inc., Chief Executive Officer Kenneth S. Kornman, DDS, PhD and his colleagues reported on their study which found important new insights into the prevention of periodontal disease and the significant opportunity to improve oral health through a personalized approach to preventive care. The genetic test is performed by dentists during routine exams or cleanings. It measures variations in genes for Interleukin-1 (IL-1),a key mediator of inflammation, and identifies individuals who are at increased risk for moderate to severe periodontal disease.