No forklift needed during dental surgery … this time.

By Kelsi Matylewicz/Benco Dental Social Media Intern

Peter Emily, a graduate from human dental school at Creighton University, in Nebraska, served as an Air Force mechanic during the Korean War, got started with animal tooth extractions and canals when he bred Doberman Pinschers, taking x-rays of their teeth to determine if they would have a tooth formation that would prevent them from participating in competition.

In 2005, he founded the Peter Emily International Veterinary Dental Foundation, a nonprofit that arranges missions for veterinarians and dentists to perform procedures on exotic animals in the U.S. and abroad. He runs the organization, with the help of one part-time employee, largely out of his home.

On a recent day the energetic 82-year-old, though semi-retired, consulted with the other dentists on a several veterinary dental procedures.

According to The New Yorker, the scene took place in an operating theater at the Wild Animal Sanctuary in Keenesburg, Colorado, where a mountain lion named Montana, lay on his side, unconscious.

Photo courtesy: Peter Emily International Veterinary Dental Foundation (PEIVDF) Facebook page.

Photo courtesy: Peter Emily International Veterinary Dental Foundation (PEIVDF) Facebook page.

Two veterinary dentists stood at his head, scraping infected pulp out of his four canine teeth, all of which needed root canals. Occasionally, one of the dentists raised an X-ray machine to the lion’s head to check his progress.

In the next room, a caged black leopard, named Backara, who needed a molar extraction, waited to endure the same set of procedures.

A technician put the 140-pound animal to sleep with an injection, then four people maneuvered him onto a cloth stretcher and carried him into the operating room. When the sanctuary works on their grizzly bears, which can weigh more than 1,500 pounds, they are anesthetized in their habitat and brought to the operating room by forklift and truck.

Montana and Backara had arrived at the sanctuary several months earlier, from a facility in Ohio.

Keep up with Dr. Emily’s newest adventures and view his intriguing photos:

To read the full story:

Ortho patients feeling ‘so fly like a G6’ – or an H2 in this case.

Is there anyone between the ages of 7 and 17 who wouldn’t love to see an H2 Hummer outside the school’s entrance waiting to chauffeur him or her to any destination?

A free ride — in red-carpet style — is just what the doctor ordered for students in Plains, Pa.

The first orthodontist in Northeast Pennsylvania to offer this service: Dr. Brian Miller, Orthodontic Specialist of Waterfront Orthodontics.

His practice’s Smile Bus — a five passenger, H2 Hummer  — transports students to and from orthodontic appointments that are scheduled during school hours.

“The Smile Bus will make life easier for our patients’ families. Waterfront Orthodontics recognizes the challenges that working parents and guardians encounter when trying to schedule orthodontic appointments and worked to overcome that challenge,” said Dr. Miller, a dad of three.

After each appointment, a “Report Card” will be issued via e-mail to the practice with any important information regarding the appointment. Good grades are to be expected from Dr. Miller, the salutatorian of his dental class at the University of Pittsburgh in 2000.

Orthodontic offices around the country have implemented similar services with great success. The formula that works: A convenient, fun, unique and safe mode of transportation that keeps time away from school to a minimum.

Of course,  a school permission slip is required. Then it’s full speed ahead to straight teeth.


No one should die from ‘dirty teeth’

By Kelsi Matylewicz/ Benco Dental Social Media Intern

Angie Stone, Owner & Founder of HyLife LLC in Edgerton, WI, has combined her love for the elderly and her dental background into one profession. Her business aims to help improve the oral health of nursing home residents.

Oral care is mandatory at nursing homes, but according to a recent story in GazetteXtra, most staff members don’t have much training — some only get about an hour’s worth.

Stone has 30 years of experience. According to the story, Stone brushes and flosses clients’ teeth, then lines their mouths with xylitol, a natural sugar substitute that makes it harder for bacteria to produce plaque. ( A typical cleaning takes about 15 minutes.)

Her inspiration to start HyLife began with two women: her mother-in-law, Gladys Stone, and her grandmother Helen Schrantz.

The former entered a nursing home with lung disease. Without a dentist or dental hygienist on staff, plaque built up in her mouth. Her lung disease continued to worsen at an alarming rate, despite the antibiotics she took, Stone said. After she passed, Stone knew the two problems were connected and she needed to do something to help.

Schrantz also entered a nursing home late into her life. In two years, she lost 60 percent of her teeth, Stone said. “I buried her with no front teeth,” Stone recalled, “and as a dental hygienist, that haunts me. It should have never happened.”

Photo courtesy: Agri-view. Angie Stone of HyLife oral care services greets George Schmidt, 88, before caring for his teeth at Huntington Place in Janesville.

Photo courtesy: Agri-view. Angie Stone of HyLife oral care services greets George Schmidt, 88, before caring for his teeth at Huntington Place in Janesville.

Stone’s business, HyLife, is still in the beginning stage. The oral care component of the company began last July, and HyLife currently employees 10 caregivers in four Midwestern states and Florida.

Stone’s dream is to have a team of caregivers all over the country in order to take care of this elderly population and prevent death from dirty teeth.

“In the U.S. in 2015, should people die from dirty teeth? No. I don’t think so,” she said. “We’re doing something, and we’re absolutely helping.”

To read the full story:

Do you have a reluctant smile? Repairing it can be a magical experience.

By Kelsi Matylewicz/Benco Dental Social Media Intern

Whether eliminating physical pain from your daily life,  conquering a “reluctant” smile, or even “selling beauty,” it’s difficult to put a price on a better tomorrow.

New York Times report on noninvasive cosmetic surgery, such as veneers, explains how they have helped three people feel more confident about their look.

Philip Fear, 49, a radiologist, has helped build a physicians’ group in Saratoga Springs, N.Y., to over 20 doctors. And his successful practice means that he is often asked to give lectures to medical groups.

But he shared with that though he is “a happy person,” he had been reluctant to smile because his teeth were badly stained from a combination of genetic factors and an antibiotic he took as a child.

So last fall, Dr. Fear  spent $60,000 to have porcelain veneers put on his teeth. “I feel more confident,” he said. “I feel a lot better about my teeth.”

He is among a growing number of people who believe that a little work will make a big difference in their careers and their overall well being.

Read more about Allie Wu, 31, who resolved several oral health issues (her speech was better, her lisp was gone, she could eat normally, and the veneers corrected her teeth color and functionality) by having her teeth lengthened by Dr. Michael Apa (pictured above), and Julien Farel, a French-born hairstylist who said that at age 45 he felt that he had to have something done to continue to look young at:

When you charge $1,000 for a haircut, as Farel does, paying $3,000 a tooth may not seem such a stretch. His haircuts last six months; his new teeth could last 20 years, noted the Times.

Says Manhattan-based cosmetic dentist Dr. Apa: “The best advice I can give people is to really utilize the consultation as much as possible and get a real understanding of what they’re in for,” he said. “It’s hard to say what the teeth are going to look like. The best way is to see countless before-and-after photos. You should ask for cases similar to yours.”

He continues: “There is no such thing as a white tooth,” said Dr. Apa, who worked on Dr. Fear’s and Ms. Wu’s teeth. “Teeth are yellow-white when you’re young and gray-white when you’re older.”


Florida trio finds life-changing success first time around

The Dentistry from the Heart concept, which since 2001 has inspired thousands of dentists to provide aid to the growing number of Americans without dental insurance, changes lives with every event.

Since its inception, registered non-profit organization  has grown to include over 200 annual events nationwide and has provided more than 60,000 people with an estimated $8 million in free dental care services.

In Florida this month, three professionals working together to provide 64 patients with their choice of a filling, extraction or cleaning contributed to a lifesaving effort.

According to a report by, the event hosted April 3 by Dr. Amber Wiebe of Santa Rosa Beach Dental and husband, Dr. Olivier Broutin of Bluewater Bay Dental along with Dr. Anishkumar Patel of Panama City, Fla., helped offer vital information to an attendee.

One of the patients seen during the free dental event was found to have oral cancer, a disease that may have remained undiagnosed without this event.

In addition to the time dedicated by hygienists, assistants and other dental professionals, a total of $20,000 of dental care was donated to the community in good faith. A number of local area businesses also made in kind donations to the event including Benco Dental and Publix Super Market.