Better Teeth through Chemistry?

Posted on Monday, July 16th, 2012

Did you hear the one about the new “chemical” that’s supposed to make teeth “cavity-proof”? The chemical was designed by dentists in Chile, and wipes out all the bacteria that cause cavities in just 60 seconds in tests. The chemical targets ‘streptococcus mutans’, the bacteria that turns the sugar in your mouth into lactic acid […]

“Treating Cavities with Medicine”

Posted on Wednesday, July 11th, 2012

You wouldn’t know from the opinion piece under that headline. Having been trained as a microbiologist prior to going to dental school, I tend to look for the classic signs of disease progression, such as those found in Koch’s postulates. I was well aware that caries is an infectious transmissible disease, but I could not […]

Can Oil “Cure” a Cavity?

Posted on Wednesday, April 11th, 2012

NOTE: Read the follow-up/update of this post That appears to be the claim of a post we recently saw over at The Healthy Home Economist, which describes healing a child’s “cavity” with butter oil capsules and a switch from tahini to raw butter at breakfast. While it’s true that decay can be arrested with good […]

Biosis #36: Oxidative Stress, Diet & Decay, & More

Posted on Wednesday, February 29th, 2012

The February 2012 issue of Biosis, our quarterly newsletter, is now online. In this issue: JoAnne’s Motivational Minute: Listening & Imagination I loved listening to my mother read. When I was very young, she would always read me the Sunday funnies after church. I think Mother had a bit of the dramatic in her, as […]

Caring for Kids’ Teeth & Gums

Posted on Friday, February 10th, 2012

  Long ago and far away, there was a radio drama called This Is Your FBI. J. Edgar Hoover called it “the finest dramatic program on the air.” Typically, its intro stressed “the current crime wave” or the excellence of the FBI – sometimes both together. Did no one stop to ask the obvious: If […]

On That Proverbial Spoonful of Sugar

Posted on Friday, January 13th, 2012

First, there were the lollipops. Then there were the mints. Then came the gummy bears. And now, presenting the next greatest cavity-fighter ever: ice cream! Not just any old ice cream, though. Super special probiotic ice cream. The researchers chose ice cream for this study because of its universal appeal, particularly among children. The probiotic […]

Vegetarianism a Cause of Tooth Decay? Um, No. Not Exactly.

Posted on Wednesday, January 4th, 2012

Did you hear the one about the “new” study finding “that vegetarians are much more likely to suffer from tooth decay, lower (more acidic) salivary pH levels, and lower stimulated saliva flow than control subjects that were matched by sex and age”? We did (thank you, Google Alerts). Only the study’s not new. And that’s […]

Caffeine Zombie Cavities

Posted on Monday, November 21st, 2011

Sound a little famil’?:     Now that we’re barreling into the holiday season, it’s not hard to guzzle even more of the stuff – a quick, reliable buzz to help keep you shopping, cooking, traveling, visiting and attending to all the other activities we do so much more of at this time of year. […]

You Don’t Need Teeth to Be Cavity-Prone

Posted on Monday, August 29th, 2011

Yep! Really. New research has documented hundreds of bacterial species in the saliva of infants, including the microbes that biofilm and lead to decay. As the Dental Tribune recently reported, US researchers have found evidence of bacteria associated with early childhood caries in the saliva of infants with no teeth. Their findings suggest that infection […]

Brush, Floss & See Your Dentist: “Not Sexy, but It Works”

Posted on Monday, August 15th, 2011

Aren’t you gladthat you can’t see bacteria? There are lots of “germs” in the human mouth. In dental biofilm alone – the “plaque” that coats your teeth between cleanings – there are more than 600 kinds, including 25 species of streptococci. One of the most problematic is S. mutans – the main causative agent of […]

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