Posts for: February, 2015
Let's talk about oral cancer. Yes, it's a scary subject — but the truth is, the more you know about it, the better able you are to protect yourself.
- Who is more likely to get oral cancer? Because of your genetic disposition — heredity — men are twice as likely to develop oral cancer as women. African-Americans have a higher incidence than Caucasians. The disease is also related to aging, although in recent years many young people have been diagnosed with this disease.
- Are some habits related to development of oral cancer? Risk factors include use of tobacco in any form, both smoking and chewing, chronic exposure to sun, and consumption of alcohol. Moderate to heavy drinkers have a three to nine times greater risk than non-drinkers. Tobacco smokers are at five to nine times greater risk than non-users, and users of snuff or chewing tobacco are at four times greater risk than non-users.
- Where do most oral cancers occur? The most common areas are in the mouth itself, the lips, the tongue, and the pharynx (back of the mouth and throat).
- What are the statistics for survival after treatment for oral cancer? Conquering cancer depends most on early detection. Since most cases of oral cancer are discovered at a late stage, survival is poor, with less than 60% surviving five years after treatment. When oral cancers are detected early, the survival rate is more than 80%.
- What are some of the symptoms of oral cancer? Most oral cancers are “squamous” (small scale-shaped) cell carcinomas in the lining of the mouth. Signs of these cancers can be seen as white or red patches in the early pre-cancerous stage. These develop into an ulcer that does not heal.
- When should you seek medical help? If you notice color changes (white or red patches) or sores or ulcers anywhere in your mouth that do not heal within two or three weeks, go to your dentist for a checkup right away. Sometimes the sores resemble cold sores. A definitive diagnosis requires a tissue biopsy, in which a small piece of tissue is removed under anesthesia and taken to a lab for microscopic examination.
- What about regular routine examinations? An oral cancer examination should be part of your visit to our office. We will inspect your face, neck, lips and mouth for signs of cancer, feel the floor of the mouth and sides of the neck for any lumps, examine your tongue and the back of your throat. The American Cancer Society recommends a cancer related check-up annually for all individuals aged 40 and older and every three years for those between 20 and 29.
If you are considering getting orthodontics in Braintree, find out if lingual braces are right for you.
Are you tired of a crooked smile? Are you finally ready to take the plunge toward a straighter teeth? If so, congratulations! Choosing to get orthodontics is a big step, but we know you’ll be happy with the results. Opting for orthodontics means that you will no longer have to deal with a crooked smile again.
However, if you are looking into your treatment options then chances are you’ve heard a little about lingual braces. But how much do you really know about getting lingual braces? Find out more about this type of orthodontics and how it could change your smile for the better.
What are lingual braces?
If you are looking to straighten your smile but you don’t want to deal with traditional metal brackets and wires that make it obvious that you are wearing braces, then consider other discreet options like lingual braces. While lingual braces look just like traditional metal braces, instead of being cemented to the front of your teeth they are adhered to the back so people won’t be able to see them.
What are the pros and cons of opting for lingual braces?
The major benefit of lingual braces is that you can hide the fact that you are wearing braces. This is particularly a great option for someone whose smile isn’t right for Invisalign, but is still looking for a more subtle way to wear orthodontics.
One of the drawbacks to lingual braces, however, is that they can be harder to clean. Food can easily get trapped between the brackets, wires and spaces between teeth, which can be harder to see if your braces are on the inside of your smile. Therefore, it’s imperative that you spend extra time and attention brushing and flossing your teeth while wearing lingual braces so you don’t develop cavities or gum disease.
Are lingual braces right for me?
If you have good oral hygiene and are looking to straighten your teeth then lingual braces might be a great option for you; however, those with small teeth, narrow jaws or major malocclusions like overbites might not be suitable for lingual braces.
To truly find out whether lingual braces could improve the look and health of your smile you need to first schedule an orthodontic consultation in Braintree. Contact Dr. George Salem, MA today and get one step closer to a straighter smile.
Cat Cora, philanthropist, author, chef, restaurateur and the first female chef on the Food Network's hit series Iron Chef America is a dynamo driven by a desire to change people's lives for the better. And she is no different when it comes to tackling her most challenging role: caring for the needs of her four active young sons. This includes monitoring the food they eat, their oral hygiene habits and protecting their teeth from injuries.
During an interview with Dear Doctor magazine, Cat describes a backyard accident in which one of her boys, Zoran, was accidentally knocked in the mouth by another child while jumping on the family's trampoline. While her son was not seriously injured, it did cause her to take proactive steps to avoid future injuries. She had her dentist make a custom-fitted mouthguard to protect his newly erupted adult teeth. He now wears the mouthguard while on the trampoline and when playing soccer.
If you and/or your children routinely participate in contact sports — boxing, football, hockey, lacrosse, soccer, water polo, rugby and basketball, for example — or other forms of vigorous physical activity, you too should consider getting a professionally made mouthguard. A properly fitted mouthguard can help prevent injuries to the jaws, lips and teeth. And unlike those cumbersome “boil and bite” mouthguards you can purchase at a drugstore, the ones we make will stay in place, making it easier for you to breathe and talk.
If you are still not convinced, consider these facts: According to the American Dental Association, an athlete is 60 times more likely to suffer harm to the teeth when not wearing a mouthguard. And the US Centers for Disease Control reports that sports-related dental injuries account for more than 600,000 visits to the emergency room each year. Furthermore, people who do not have a knocked out tooth properly reserved or replanted may face a lifetime cost of $10,000 to $20,000 per tooth, according to the National Youth Sports Foundation for Safety.
To learn more about mouthguards, continue reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Mouthguards.” Or if you are interested in obtaining a mouthguard for yourself and/or your child, contact us today to schedule an appointment. And to read the entire interview with Cat Cora, please see the article “Cat Cora.”