Is a sleep study in your future?

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If bad breath, tooth sensitivity or a toothache is plaguing you, perhaps it’s a nighttime habit at the root.

Findings of a recent study back the theory that open-mouth breathing is associated with dental disease such as tooth decay and enamel erosion.

According to a story by Katherine Derla for Tech Times, the University of Otago’s Sir John Walsh Research Institute analyzed the oral pH levels of 10 participants. Alternately, these healthy volunteers were asked to sleep with and without a nose clip that forces them to breathe through the mouth.

The average pH level of those who slept with the nose clips was 6.6, which is slightly acidic compared to the neutral 7 of those who breathed through their noses. The team also found a visible pattern on the pH levels and temperature between morning and evening.

“Intraoral pH decreased slowly over the hours of sleep in all participants, but showed greater falls over a longer period of time when participants were forced to mouth breathe,” said Ph.D. student and study lead author Joanne Choi.

There are times when the pH levels would drop to 3.6 during sleep when the participants were forced to breathe through the mouth. Choi said the dropped rate is below the critical 5.5 threshold when the tooth enamel starts losing its minerals.

 

Listen. Is that the sound of clean?

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Mobile apps can motivate better oral hygiene habits, as demonstrated by the award-winning Brush DJ @BrushDJ, (free toothbrush timer app developed by a UK dentist to make brushing less boring) and the popular Disney Magic Timer App by Oral-B (app featuring 23 Disney, Marvel and Star Wars characters that track progress for kids).

Might the toothbrush of the future inspire better tooth cleaning based on the sound of scrubbing (bristles)?

According to a report in sciencedaily.com, researchers in Japan have discovered that how effectively we clean our teeth and how satisfied we are with the brushing job we do depends a lot on the sound of the bristles scrubbing against the enamel:

 “In trials with volunteer teeth cleaners, the researchers used a tiny microphone in a modified toothbrush to ‘sample’ the sound being made in the mouth during brushing and to modulate it and then feed that sound back to the volunteer. The study, which is published in the International Journal of Arts and Technology, explains how modulating the brush sound affects brushing effi cacy and satisfaction. The authors found that if they manipulated the pitch, or frequency and loudness, of the brushing sound, they could alter the volunteers’ perception of comfort and accomplishment. They also found that if they gradually increased the frequency as teeth cleaning progressed, the volunteers felt like the process was more comfortable and that their teeth were cleaner at the end of the process.”

Are headphones the answer? Probably not. The report describes a prototype system in which the tooth brusher wears headphones … impractical in the day-to-day.

Bone conduction speaker systems (think: hearing aid technology) might be incorporated into the smart toothbrush so that the amplified feedback loop is created in the mouth.

The sound of scrubbing. Could a Super Bowl commercial incorporating  Simon and Garfunkel be on the horizon?

Monday fun fact: Bone conduction explains why a person’s voice sounds different to him/her when it is recorded and played back. Because the skull conducts lower frequencies better than air, people perceive their own voices to be lower and fuller than others do, and a recording of frequently sounds higher.

 

That’s a lot of smiles.

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285, 889.

As of Friday, Feb. 5, 285, 889 children were set to participate in the American Dental Association Foundation’s Give Kids A Smile® program.

Launched nationally by the American Dental Association in 2003 to support free oral health services for underserved children, Give Kids A Smile day is celebrated nationally on the first Friday in February each year.

According to the foundation, the participation outlook for the year ahead includes:

Number of Events – 1,252
Number of Kids – 285,889
Participating Dentists – 7,102
Other Volunteers – 24,354
If you would like to join the GKAS movement and host your own event, please visit the GKAS Program Planning Toolbox or the FAQ page.
Use and follow the hashtag #GKAS to share your Give Kids A Smile story and photos on social media.
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Drs. Nancy Villa and Cavan Brunsden at the Rutgers facility groundbreaking. The ADA Foundation presented the Jeff Dalin, DDS, Give Kids A Smile Volunteer Award.

The ADA Foundation offers congratulations to this year’s Smile Champion Award winners, Dr. Cavan Brunsden and the New Jersey Dental Association team, winners of the Jeff Dalin, D.D.S. Give Kids A Smile Volunteer Award.

A photo exhibit of dental dreams.

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A photo exhibition opening tonight, running throughout Dubai Photo Week and extending to March 4 offers an examination of “The Smile.”

Hosting gallery Gulf Photo Plus @gulfphotoplus, offers a glimpse of the exhibit:

“A cursory search of archival images by world-renowned VII Photo agency photographers seems to show we often frown upon smiles in our photographs.

The Smile exhibition brings together images of people smiling – most often a taboo expression in photojournalism – into a collection of powerful images gathered during the most important historical events that have shaped the past 30 years. Compiled as a group, they reveal the astonishing range of human behavior that smiles represent.

Pride powers a smile, power emboldens a smile, we smile to seduce or be seduced. But we also smile when we lie, when we’re scared or anxious. In fact, just one variant of the 18 different smiles recognizes enjoyment, and it’s this universal variant that unites us as human beings.”

VII @VIIPHoto, created in 2001 by seven of the world’s leading photojournalists, now represents 19 of the world’s preeminent photojournalists whose careers span 35 years of world history.

View a photo of the photos included in the exhibition: http://gulfphotoplus.com/gpp/2016/exhibition?platform=hootsuite

Protect your pet’s teeth.

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How much do you know about your pet’s dental health? Take the American Veterinary Medical Foundation’s quiz to find out.

Annually, the AVMA sponsors National Pet Dental Health Month in February, a reminder to dedicate efforts to your furry loved one’s oral health care. Their website offers helpful insight such as:

  • step-by-step instructions on how to teach a dog or cat to accept a daily tooth brushing
  • how to prevent pets from getting periodontal disease,
  • how to take care of your pet’s teeth yearround.

Keep it social: The AVMF invites pet lovers to view and submit photos on their Pet Dental Health Month Facebook event page, or tweet or Instagram your photos with the hashtag #PetDental.

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Keep your guinea pig’s teeth in top form.