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Research on Drug Suggests Future Possibilities as a Periodontal Antibiotic

While digging in the abyss of research studies, I fell across information about a potential new antibiotic that may have a chance to be utilized in the treatment of periodontal disease without drug resistance and would spare beneficial bacteria. For many years, the standard of care for treating periodontal disease included scaling and root planing. We may sometimes adjunctively use...

Examining Growth of Mid-level Dental Practitioners Inside and Outside the U.S.

Over the past several years, a push for mid-level dental practitioners has been underway to better provide care for at-risk and underserved populations. Mid-level dental practitioners are essentially the equivalent of a nurse practitioner or physician assistant in medicine. States such as Alaska, Washington, and Minnesota are just a few examples of areas where these mid-level practitioners can train...

Gene-editing Research Hints at Possible Treatment for Cold Sores

In May 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) estimated that around half a billion people worldwide are living with genital herpes, and several billion have oral herpes. While available antiviral medications help reduce symptoms, there is no cure. A paper published in the science journal Nature Communications reported that a team of researchers were able to eliminate over 90% of...

Dental Prevention vs. Treatment: Breaking It Down

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, and preventing disease is preferable to curing a disease. Prevention is the action of stopping something from happening or arising. Treatment is care given for an illness or injury. Even when illness is treated, one may not fully recover. Prevention saves money, time, pain, and inconveniences. Treatment costs money,...

Proposed Illinois Legislation Will Allow Dental Assistants to Scale – Opposition Opinion

In October 2021, an Illinois State Dental Society lobbyist, Dave Marsh, made the claim that dental hygienists were not “medically qualified to correct your health.”1 It was a bold claim from someone who seemingly, due to his position in the Illinois Dental Association, supports the bills sent to the state legislature that would allow dental assistants to scale supragingival...

Unique Features of the Mouth that Help Forensic Investigators

The mouth is one of the most unique features of the body ‒ most valuable in the basic survival of speaking and eating. The mouth is also very valuable in providing identification. Fingerprints have distinct attributes, and so do the lip, tongue, teeth, and rugae. These prints can identify people in uncertain situations such as crimes, mass disasters, missing...

Recare Visits, Rumination, and Those Endless Minutes

You’re in the zone at the place after data collection before the exam ‒ the time when dental hygienists use their secret sauce to remove the biofilm, calculus, or debris (aka junk). Dental hygienists are lost in thought and hopefully only good ones. But it can be the time when we mull over something that is weighing heavily on our...

Building Trust in Dentistry Takes Time, Effort, and Work

Trust is the assured reliance on the character, ability, strength, or truth of someone or something.6 Trust can be fragile, much like glass. Once it is compromised or broken, it might be able to be repaired or patched, but it will never truly be the same again. It may also be damaged beyond repair. Statistics show that people trust each...

Refresher on Different Types of Scientific Studies and Their Clinical Relevance

Practicing clinicians must understand the differences in the types of dental research and clinical relevance when reading and reviewing scientific literature. This awareness helps ensure dental professionals are providing the best possible care to patients and can assist in helping determine the best recommendations or tools to improve patients' oral health. Placing too much weight on a study that may...

Lichen Planus: Dental Professionals Should Diligently Monitor Lesion Development during Care

Several of my female patients have recently presented with the same pathological condition of lichen planus. They were treated in the same way with a topical corticosteroid cream, triamcinolone, that was applied to the affected areas in the buccal mucosa, gingival tissues, and/or tongue two to three times a day. The dental patients’ questions about the immune system deficiency triggered...

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