Today's Dental News

Clinical Trial of Tooth Regeneration

It is well known that oral infection progressively destroys periodontal tissues and is the leading cause of tooth loss in adults. A major goal of periodontal treatment is regeneration of the tissues lost to periodontitis. Unfortunately, most current therapies cannot predictably promote repair of tooth-supporting defects. A variety of regenerative approaches have been used clinically using bone grafts and guiding tissue membranes with limited success.

In a new article published in the International and American Associations for Dental Research’s Journal of Dental Research, M. Kitamura, from Osaka University Graduate School of Dentistry, Japan, and a team of researchers conducted a human clinical trial to determine the safety and effectiveness of fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2) for clinical application. This is the largest study to date in the field of periodontal regenerative therapy.

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Fish Fights Gum Disease

A diet full of fish and nuts goes a long way to protect people from gum disease—a new study has shown. The research has suggested that polyunsaturated fatty acids found in foods such as fatty fish and nuts will help keep people’s smiles healthy, as it has been shown to help lower the risks of gum disease and periodontitis.

The research examined the diet of 182 adults between 1999 and 2004, and found that those who consumed the highest amounts of fatty acids were 30 percent less likely to develop gum disease and 20 percent less likely to develop periodontitis (severe gum disease).

Lead researcher of the study, Dr. Asghar Z. Naqvi of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston said: “We found that n-3 fatty acid intake, particularly docosahexaenoic acid and eicosapentaenoic acid are inversely associated with periodontitis in the US population. To date, the treatment of periodontitis has primarily involved mechanical cleaning and local antibiotic application. A dietary therapy, if effective, might be a less expensive and safer method for the prevention and treatment of periodontitis.”

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Home Teeth Whitening Can Cause Permanent Damage

Self-treatments using baking soda, ash and hydrogen peroxide, many of which are detailed online by members of the public with no dental experience, can strip tooth enamel and cause lasting damage to the gums, experts cautioned.

The techniques are becoming an increasingly popular alternative to expensive professional treatment, especially among teenage girls.

Examples of the potentially hazardous advice offered online include brushing the teeth with soap, salt, baking soda and hydrogen peroxide or bleach.

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Male Sex Hormones Blamed for Higher Risk of Gum Infection

Researchers at the University of Maryland Dental School propose that sex hormones could possibly indicate the biological basis for men to be more susceptible to gum infection than women.

The researchers Harlan Shiau and Mark Reynolds at the Dental School have worked on probably the first-ever inclusive assessment of the progress and sequence of gum disease from a gender perspective.

The authors scrutinized evidence to establish a natural base to account for the differences in vulnerability to periodontal disease between the sexes. The observations revealed that the sex steroids affect the immune system in the regulation of inflammation. Additionally, the origin of the dissimilarity could be genetic.

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Study Shows Fluoride from Tea & Toothpaste Weakens Bones

Fluoride consumption from tea and toothpaste damaged a woman’s bones, report researchers in Osteoporosis International published October 9.

Fluoride, added to water intending to reduce tooth decay, accumulates in and can weaken bones. To prevent bone damage or skeletal fluorosis, in 1986 EPA set 4 mg/L as water fluoride’s maximum-contaminant level. In 2006, the National Research Council reported that 4 mg/L is too high to protect health. Some brewed teas contain almost twice that concentration.

This case describes a 53-year-old British woman with a broken bone in her foot and abnormally dense bones and badly decayed teeth.

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