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Spring Hatfield, RDH

Spring Hatfield, RDH
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Spring Hayes Hatfield, RDH, is a graduate of Florida State College at Jacksonville. She practices clinically in Denham Springs, Louisiana. She is Dental Hygiene Board Certified in Florida and Louisiana. She is a member of the American Academy for Oral Systemic Health and the Foundation for Airway and Craniofacial Excellence. Her passion is helping her patients better understand the oral-systemic disease connection. In her free time, she enjoys traveling with her husband and two children. She can be reached via email at SpringHatfieldRDH@gmail.com.

Epigenetics: How Medical Research Can Aid Dental Diagnosis

In the late 1940s, Dr. Conrad Waddington, an embryologist, coined the term epigenetics. At that time, most embryologists did not consider genes important for human development. They believed genes only played a minor role, such as with eye color and hair color. Dr. Waddington proposed that genes were regulated by an epigenetic landscape, and this landscape was to “illustrate the...

Oxidative Stress: Will Future Solutions Launch Antioxidant Therapies for Dentistry?

Oxidative stress is an imbalance between the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS/free radicals) and antioxidants in the body. Prolonged oxidative stress is associated with a wide range of chronic illnesses, which includes, but is not limited to, cancer, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, chronic inflammation, stroke, and numerous neurodegenerative diseases.1 As with most bodily functions, there is...

Tooth Loss Impacts Cognitive Function: Bringing Mastication Symphony into Tune

In an article titled Dental Deafferentation and Brain Damage: A Review and Hypothesis, published in The Kaohsiung Journal of Medicine and written by Yi-Tai Jou, the author describes masticatory function as a symphony orchestra. When all members of the symphony are present and playing well, it is a beautiful harmony. However, if one musician, for example, is missing, it can...

The Close Relationship between Oral Allergy Syndrome and Seasonal Allergies

Oral Allergy Syndrome
Seasonal allergies can be dreadful. Everyone seems to be affected to some degree. Did you know that certain seasonal allergies can cause oral symptoms as well? Patients may not realize the connection or that there is a possibility that their oral symptoms could be linked to certain seasonal allergies. Studies indicate that 20% to 70% of people who suffer...

What Hygienists Need to Consider when Treating Patients with Malocclusion

Malocclusion is defined as “irregular contact of opposing teeth in the upper and lower jaws.”1 Most people with minimal knowledge of dentistry view it as an esthetic problem and not an oral health problem. Not only are there oral health implications, but general health can be affected too. It is estimated that about 65% of the U.S. population has...

Noma (Cancrum Oris): A Case of a Third World Disease in a First World Country

People who live in developed countries often lack knowledge of some of the serious dental and health issues that persistently trouble residents in developing countries. On an infrequent basis, a horrible disease will surface in a developed country where medical care, nutrition, and sanitation are too often taken for granted. One of those diseases is noma. Noma, also known as cancrum...

Research in Nutrition Helps Sharpen Focus on Oral-systemic Links for Dental Treatment

Since periodontal disease is a chronic complex disease affecting 47% of the adult population in the United States,1 we know that treatment of the periodontium with an eye on oral-systemic links is an important focus. Proper nutrition should not be neglected as it plays an intricate role in the control of periodontal disease. The good news is that a huge...

Dear CVS: I Have Concerns About Your Do-It-Yourself Orthodontics Partnership

Dear CVS, As a dental professional, I am writing with serious concerns associated with your recent partnership with a do-it-yourself orthodontic company. Upon looking into this company, I discovered they are quick to threaten or pursue litigation against anyone that questions their ethics, safety of patients, or quality of work they provide. For this reason, in an attempt to avoid...

Understanding and Managing Xerostomia

Xerostomia or dry mouth is one of the most undermanaged oral health conditions in medicine and dentistry. This could be due to the lack of diagnosis and the lack of understanding about the oral implications associated with xerostomia. In addition to oral implications, many patients experience a decrease in quality of life that can potentially lead to depression. The...

Measles: How Dentistry Can help Slow Outbreak through Diagnosis

We may see a record-breaking number of measles cases in the United States for the first time this year, the highest since the elimination of measles in the year 2000. From January 1 through April 19, there have been 626 individual cases of measles confirmed in 22 states. I would like to emphasize these are confirmed cases; there could be...