December 17, 2014
I can’t believe how this year has flown by! Christmas is right around the corner and, before we know it, the New Year will be upon us. As I spent some time decorating the office for Christmas this week, one decoration in particular made me stop and think for a moment about something I believe is especially important this time of the year.
This festive little sleigh, adorned with twinkling lights and gingham ribbon bows, has been one of my favorite holiday decorations for more than ten years. Every Christmas, I bring out the sleigh with its smiling snowmen and pine needle boughs, and I have to smile at all of the memories it carries. I love this cheery addition to the office and the unmistakable holiday spirit it contributes to the ambiance of this space. (more…)
January 31, 2013
Remember the way it feels to get corn stuck between your teeth? It isn’t very pleasant. Luckily, we have dental floss for just such a problem. But dental floss can do far more than remove pesky food from between your teeth. It’s an excellent tool for cleaning the areas of your mouth that are more difficult to access. Your Erlanger dentist, Dr. Darlene Sand Wall, elaborates on the vital role flossing plays in the health of your mouth. (more…)
January 4, 2013
How often do you smile? Studies show that smiling, even insincerely, boosts a person’s mood. Crooked teeth or tooth stains may keep you from showing off your smile. Stifling a smile can send the wrong message, and people may interpret a straight face to represent sadness or aggression. Don’t let dissatisfaction with your smile keep you from properly expressing yourself when cosmetic dentistry can improve the appearance of teeth and boost your confidence. In this article, Erlanger cosmetic dentist Dr. Darlene Sand Wall explains the benefits of cosmetic dentistry.
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December 14, 2012
Many of us celebrate the holiday season by attending parties and celebrations at the office, with friends, and in our homes with family. One of the most essential parts of these wintertime celebrations includes the many wonderful holiday treats that we only seem to eat during this time of year. Unfortunately, most of these holiday goodies can give us bad breath. Anyone hoping to get a kiss under the mistletoe this year had better follow the advice of their Erlanger family dentist for avoiding these commonplace bad breath culprits.
Candy is Dandy for Causing Bad Breath
From candy canes to hot cocoa swimming with marshmallows to Grandma’s famous Christmas fudge, sugary goodies pervade the snack table at nearly every holiday gathering. Unfortunately, those sweet treats don’t just widen your waistband. They also ruin your breath. Particles of sugar left in your mouth become food for bacteria. These bacteria digest the sugar and produce a foul-smelling, acidic by-product that eats away at your tooth enamel and gives you dragon breath. (more…)
December 4, 2012
Many people, especially women, are concerned with bone loss as they age. Over the years, general physicians have often prescribed a certain class of drugs called bisphosphonates to combat bone density conditions like osteoporosis. Intravenous bisphosphonates are sometimes used with certain types of cancer. In high potency forms, bisphosphonates have stopped cancer cells from growing in some patients. Unfortunately, powerful and affective drugs often come with side effects. Dr. Darlene Sand Wall, your Kentucky dentist, will talk about a condition that can defeats the very purpose of bone building medications called Bisphosphonate Related Osteonecrosis of the Jaw (BRONJ).
Bisphosphonate Drugs Explained (more…)
October 25, 2012
This is an exciting time of year for candy lovers. Americans purchase an estimated 600 million pounds of candy for Halloween every year. For perspective, imagine 16 billion fun sized candy bars. If that doesn’t inspire you to make an appointment for a checkup with your dentist, we’re not sure what will. However, moderate candy consumption is not an issue if you keep up with your oral hygiene and regular dental exams. As the holiday season ramps up with Halloween coming in less than a week, your Kentucky dentist, Dr. Sand Wall, has a fun quiz on some candy facts.
Q1. How many pounds of chocolate will be sold during Halloween week?
B. 90 million
C. 90 billion
D. 90 trillion
Q2. True or false – The top selling candy at Halloween is candy corn.
Q3. True or false – Sugar causes cavities. (more…)
October 18, 2012
We are in the middle of National Bone and Joint Awareness Week. You may not realize the different ways that your bone and joint health relate to your oral health. Consider your jawbone, for starters. Without proper function, and regular mineralization, you could have TMD (tempormandibular joint disorder) or facial collapse from lack of bone density. Arthritis is a painful condition that affects your joints though inflammation of tissues. Your Kentucky dentist, Dr. Darlene Sand Wall, explains the connection between healthy teeth and arthritis in the knees.
Research Study Links Gum Disease Bacteria to Arthritis
Researchers from Case Western Reserve University, in Cleveland, OH, analyzed DNA information to determine that the bacteria that cause gum disease can travel all the way from the mouth to the knees. Synovial fluid surrounds the knee caps. This protective liquid is sterile in people with good health. However, when someone already has arthritis, the bacteria are able to take advantage of an already unhealthy situation, and settle in the knee joints. These findings are certainly compelling in terms of oral-systemic health (a connection between your mouth and body). (more…)
October 12, 2012
As a preventive care measure, most dentists advocate an oral cancer screening during your regular dental check-up. During your oral exam, Dr. Sand Wall will examine the inside of your mouth for lumps, suspicious lesions, and discolorations, such as red or white patches. Oral cancer is often found in places you may not look, such as under the tongue or inside the cheeks.
Most mouth sores are noncancerous. However, if Dr. Sand Wall finds a sore of unusual appearance, she may perform a painless oral brush biopsy to test the abnormal tissue for cancer. The objective, as with any type of cancer, is to detect oral cancer early when it is most easily treated.
Oral Cancer Statistics
The American Cancer Society estimates that 35,000 people will get oral cancer in 2012. The number of fatalities for 2012 is estimated at approximately 6,800. The good news, however, is that the death rate from oral cancer has declined steadily since the 1970s – a statistic many experts credit to early detection.* (more…)
October 3, 2012
Gum disease is the leading cause of adult tooth loss in America. Sometimes practicing excellent oral hygiene isn’t enough to combat your teeth’s worst enemy. Today, your Erlanger dentist, Dr. Darlene Sand Wall discusses gum disease, and what you can do about it.
What Is Gum Disease?
Gum disease is a bacterial infection of the supporting tissues of the teeth. Typically, gum disease begins with poor dental hygiene. If you brush and floss regularly, at least twice a day, plaque begins to form on your teeth. When plaque is allowed to remain for more than 48 hours, it calcifies, or hardens, into tartar–an insoluble substance that irritates your gums. Unattended, bacteria will thrive in tartar buildup, causing gum tissue to detach from your teeth and leading to infection. (more…)
September 8, 2012
Dental caries, more commonly known as tooth decay, is one of the most widespread preventable diseases in the world. By the time they reach 40 years of age, over 85% of Americans will have signs of decay on at least one tooth. Two particular bacteria currently making their home in the human mouth, Streptococcus mutans and Lactobacillus, digest the sugars left behind in your mouth. The digestion process turns these sugars into enamel-eating acids. Until recently, the best defense against tooth decay included a consistent and thorough at-home dental care regimen and regular checkups and cleanings with a general dentist. While you shouldn’t throw away your toothbrush and cancel your next cleaning quite yet, scientists have recently established a positive link between coconut oil and the reduction of tooth decay causing bacteria.
Coconut Oil Redeemed
Once vilified in the popular media for its high saturated fat content, coconut oil has come back into vogue in recent years. Produced by extracting the natural oil from the meat of mature coconuts, virgin coconut oil has gained popularity in the U.S. as a (more…)