Posts for: May, 2010
It's easy to take some things for granted until they're suddenly gone. Have you ever thought about how it would feel if you lost one or two of your front teeth? You'd probably avoid smiling. It would be uncomfortable talking with someone face-to-face. It wouldn't be easy pronouncing certain words. And how about eating an apple? Until your teeth are gone, you might not miss them.
Each year, thousands of kids get hurt on the playing field, the basketball court, or while skateboarding, biking or during other activities. Blows to the face in nearly every sport can injure your teeth, lips, cheeks and tongue.
A properly fitted mouth guard, or mouth protector, is an important piece of athletic gear that can protect your teeth and smile. You may have seen them used in contact sports, such as football, boxing, and ice hockey.
However, you don't have to be on the football field to benefit from a mouth guard. New findings in sports dentistry show that even in non-contact sports such as gymnastics, rollerblading, and field hockey, mouth guards help protect teeth. Many experts recommend that a mouth guard be worn for any recreational activity that poses a risk of injury to the mouth.
There are three types of mouth guards: The ready-made, or stock, mouth guard; the mouth-formed (boil and bite) mouth guard; and the custom-made mouth guard made by our office. All three mouth guards provide protection but vary in comfort and cost.
The most effective mouth guard should have several features: It should be resilient, tear-resistant and comfortable. It should fit properly, be durable and easy to clean, and not restrict your speech or breathing.
Generally, a mouth guard covers only the upper teeth, but in some cases we will instead or also make a mouth guard for the lower teeth. We can suggest the right mouth guard for you.
Don't take your teeth for granted. Protect your smile with a mouth guard.
Spent some time with the kids at Village Preschool in Bethel the other day talking about how to take care of their teeth. The kids were great. Here's a picture of Spritzer (the dog) and me. The picture of Rubber Chicken (the rubber chicken) and me didn't come out nearly as nicely.
All professionals need to keep learning and growing.
Every year I attend - and I encourage all my office team members to attend - dental continuing education courses in a variety of subjects to keep current, learn new techniques, hone skills and be aware of the latest information in oral health care.
I'm spending May 6 and 7, 2010, at the 145th Charter Oak Dental Meeting, the annual meeting of the Connecticut State Dental Association.
Among other classes, I'll be learning about the latest in:
- Infection control techniques
- Domestic Violence and the Dental Professional (how to recognize and intervene)
- The Problem: Disparities in Access to Dental Care (a huge number of Connecticut residents have no access to dental care)
Erika, our dental assistant, is taking a course on "Radiation Health and Safety."
We'll report on our learning when we get back.
Our mission statement says it all: "Our practice is firmly rooted in the art and science of dentistry with a visionary eye towards the future."
Off to school!
The Cabinet today approved the inclusion of dental care for children up to the age of 8, part of what we here call the "Basket of Health Services, our basic subsidized healthcare. The question of who will pay for all-important pediatric dental care -- which comes in at about NIS 160 million annually -- has been a source of great controversy for some months now. Clearly, the people who opposed it have never taken a good look at the mouths of many an older Israeli.