Do you play a sport, such as football, hockey, or boxing, that could result in damage to your mouth from a jarring collision? If so, you probably wear a mouthguard to protect your teeth. But did you know that recent research suggests that an athletic mouthguard can actually improve your performance? To learn more about this research, read the explanation from your Erlanger KY dentist, Dr. Darlene Sand Wall, below. (more…)
July 11, 2013
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…)
July 26, 2012
Imagine a world without cavities. Since 2005, that’s exactly what Jose Cordova of Yale University and Erich Astudillo from the University of Chile have done. Their efforts have netted them the discovery of a molecule that could revolutionize dental care by actively fighting tooth decay. Erlanger dentist Dr. Darlene Sand Wall discusses the discovery and what it could mean for the future of human teeth.
The Basics of Tooth Decay
Tooth decay is almost as common as the cold. In fact, cavities are the number one disease in children. The accolades for this achievement go to the bacteria Streptococcus mutans, or S. mutans, which metabolize refined sugar and turn it into lactic acid. They do not need oxygen, so they favor sneaking into the tight spaces between adjacent teeth and quietly mounting acid attacks against your teeth every time you eat or drink. S. mutans inhabits the oral cavity and contributes to the formation of plaque (bacterial plaque). The only way to effectively protect your teeth from the decay it can cause is to neutralize its acid production. Traditionally, this is done by brushing and flossing your teeth at least twice a day, attending your six month dental checkup, and refraining from sugary foods and beverages like candy, sweets, fruit juices, and sodas. (more…)