2000px-US_CDC_logo.svgWe have posted before on the dangers of e-cigarettes, and have always cautioned our patients against their use. A recent study show that e-cigarettes contain more cancer-causing agents than traditional cigarettes. In fact, one brand tested 10 time more.

Carcinogens found include chemicals such as formaldehyde and acetaldehyde were found in several forms of e-cigarette liquid.

According to Tom Frieden, director of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the number of young people smoking e-cigarettes has exploded. Interviewed on NPR, Frieden said:

“Undoubtedly, the case that many of those kids are going to be dealing with nicotine addiction,” Frieden said. “It’s a tobacco product, it’s nicotine, it’s highly addictive, and once people are hooked on nicotine the possibility, the likelihood, that they will smoke regular cigarettes is significant.”

Frieden says he’s also concerned that people think of e-cigarettes as proven smoking-cessation devices.

“They may help some people … [but] none of these companies have gone and said, ‘Yes, we are going to take this to the FDA and market it as a way of quitting smoking,’” he said. “In contrast, what we are seeing is the tobacco industry purchasing many of the e-cigarette companies and thinking of ways to keep people smoking – not to get people to quit.”

A CDC study published this year found that teens who had vaped, or smoked e-cigarettes, were twice as likely to smoke traditional cigarettes.

Because e-cigarettes have many odors and flavors, including fruit, bubble gum and other sweet concoctions, it is difficult for parents to recognize when their child is vaping. And when asked about safety, many teens know that cigarettes are not good for you but believe e-cigs are safe.

At Perimeter Dental Group we hope that none of our patients use smoke, chew tobacco or vape.  The risks are just too high. There are not statistics on cancer rates among e-cigarette users however rates of diseases, including oral cancer, are higher for those who use tobacco products. Learn more about how you can quit here.

 

 

We just received this wonderful testimonial from one of our wonderful patients, Tony Ball. It’s so good we had to share! Thank you, Tony, for taking the time to write us. (Promise not to tell Dr. Scurria your little secret. Besides, he’d be very happy that you are staying true to your retainers!

“I’m a 53 year old guy that has always had a “nice” smile, but I wanted more out of my smile.  I wore braces in junior high school, but like many teenagers, I always seemed to “forget” to wear my retainers and my teeth gradually shifted out of line.  Sorry for wasting the money, Mom and Dad.  So after living with a lesser smile for 30 years, I finally decided enough was enough.

Quite simply, I wanted the crooked teeth to be straight so I could have that perfect smile once again.  Being a long-time and very satisfied patient of Dr. Scurria (the best!), I felt comfortable discussing my options with him.  He explained Invisalign to me; the procedure, the associated time-lines, and he even showed me the computerized time lapse video of the gradual repositioning of the teeth in question.  Immediately after seeing the before and after smile, I knew the Invisalign program was what I had been looking for.  It seemed like the natural and most cost effective remedy, and I trusted Dr. Scurria.

So in January 2014, Dr. Scurria attached the very small “buttons” on my teeth and I began wearing the aligners.  I had read reviews where other folks had noted discomfort with the Invisalign aligners, so I had my bottle of aspirin nearby.  But there was no discomfort at all.  Yea, there was slight “pressure” on the trouble teeth, but it didn’t “hurt” and I actually looked forward to it because I knew that meant my teeth were shifting back into place.  After wearing 12 different aligners (2 weeks per aligner), I had that perfect smile by June 2014.  Man, what a difference!

The funny thing is nobody at work even noticed I was wearing the aligners, but when I had them removed, I had people saying things like “your teeth look so white” or “did you just get back from vacation?” They knew something was different, but they weren’t quite sure what it was.  After the procedure, Dr. Scurria gave me a top and bottom night-time retainer which I still wear each night when I sleep, but that’s a piece of cake.  In fact, I can’t sleep without them now and, as well as keeping my teeth nice and straight, they serve to mitigate any teeth grinding issues.  And I’ve been known to squirt a little whitening gel in them and wear them for an hour on a Friday evening after a week’s worth of morning coffee or a nice Friday dinner with red wine.  But don’t tell Dr. Scurria!

It sounds cliché, but my only regret with the Invisalign procedure was not having done it years before.  But after 30 years, I now have my smile back.  Thanks Dr. Scurria!”

 

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Congratulations – you’re going to be a mom!  As you know, taking care of yourself is critical to the health of your baby, and that means your dental care, too. You will want to let us know if you are pregnant but do not cancel any regular checkups. We will offer the dental treatment plan appropriate for whichever trimester you are in.

Pregnancy causes changes to the mother’s hormones which can effect oral health, including a periodontal problem called “pregnancy gingivitis.” Some women experience tender or bleeding gums during pregnancy. If that does occur, call our office to schedule an appointment with Dr. Scurria.

A healthy diet is good for you and your baby. Your baby’s teeth begin developing during the third month of pregnancy — calcium rich foods such as dairy products will help your baby develop strong teeth, gums and bones.

Maintain strong twice daily brushing and flossing habits to protect yourself from gum disease and help your baby, too. Studies have shown that bacteria which causes tooth decay can be passed from mother to baby.

If you suffer from morning sickness and the taste of toothpaste is a problem, try a different brand that does not contain mint or other flavoring. Rinsing with mouthwash or even plain water can help reduce the adverse effect of frequent morning sickness on your teeth.

After Your Baby is Born
Taking care of your baby will keep you very busy, and sometimes taking care of yourself falls through the cracks! We suggest you make your “after the baby” regular checkup before delivering so you already have it on your schedule. If you experience any gum problems during pregnancy you will want to come in as soon as possible after the baby is born.

photoCongratulations to Evan M., our November PD’s Kids Club winner and Claire M., our December winner. They each received a $25 gift card from PD’s Gift Locker!  All kids who are Perimeter Dental Group patients can join the club and enter to win a gift card from PD. Learn all about it here.

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Screening & Detection

Oral cancer is a deadly disease with 42,000 new cases resulting the death of 8,000 Americans each year. With early detection, oral cancer is 90% curable. Dr. Scurria exams each patient for any signs of oral cancer. Early detection is critical but not all oral cancers can be detected in their early stages during a physical exam. At Perimeter Dental Group we recommend annual screening for oral cancer – cancer which can occur in the mouth, tongue, tonsil, throat or lips.

The screening for oral cancer is painless and takes just minutes.  Ask us about oral cancer screening during your next regularly schedule checkup.  However, if you or a family member shows any of these symptoms, please contact us or your doctor to schedule an exam.

• A sore or lesion in the mouth that does not heal within two weeks.
• A lump or thickening in the cheek.
• A  white or red patch on the gums, tongue, tonsil, or lining of the mouth
• A sore throat or a feeling that something is caught in the throat.Difficulty chewing or swallowing.
• Difficulty moving the jaw or tongue.
• Numbness of the tongue or other area of the mouth.
• Swelling of the jaw that causes dentures to fit poorly or become uncomfortable.
• Chronic hoarseness.

Prevention 

There are many factors that have been identified as risk factors for oral cancer but using tobacco products remains the most significant. Cigarettes, cigars, pipe smoking and smokeless tobacco products are the major contributors to oral cancer. The incidence of oral cancer increases as we age, so screening of at-risk adults is critical.

Early detection is critical to recovery. Please talk with Dr. Scurria about your risk factors for oral cancer.