covid19

Easter Bunny Tips!

April 4th, 2021

As we hop into spring and a new month, we're reminded to keep our health up to par especially as we continue to fight through COVID-19. Easter, like many of the other holidays celebrated over the past year may still look different as we continue to avoid large crowds and limit our gatherings to people in our immediate households to help protect against the spread of coronavirus.

With Easter also comes lots of sweet treats, from marshmallow peeps, to jellybeans, to chocolate bunnies! But, will this impact your smile? Some sweets can be more harmful to your teeth than others, and while indulging in your favorite treats every once in a while can be okay, we're here to tell you about some of the most dangerous candies that can lead to tooth decay.

This Easter, and in general, you'll want to avoid:

  1. Sticky and gooey candies: These candies, such as caramels, gummies, jelly beans, and taffy, tend to stay in the mouth longer and adhere to the surfaces of your teeth, allowing dangerous oral bacteria to feed off the sugars and create acids that break down your tooth enamel.

  1. Hard candies: Rock solid candies like lollipops or jawbreakers tend to stay in your mouth for longer periods of time while you eat them, leaving teeth exposed to sugar during this time. This gives the oral bacteria a greater chance to cause damage. Not to mention, hard candies can cause tooth damage and lead to chipped or broken teeth.

  1. Sour treats: Sour treats can be just as tricky as sweet ones. The sugars and acids put your teeth at risk of weakening the outer layer of your teeth, the dental enamel, and offer an environment for damaging bacteria to thrive in and create tooth decay.

Luckily, there are healthier alternatives:

  • Dark Chocolates: Dark chocolate is a great option to satisfy your sweet tooth. Research has reported dark chocolate to have properties that help fight cavities and dental plaque. In addition, it has been found to contain nutrients beneficial to health, including potassium, phosphorous, zinc, and selenium. It also contains antioxidants, which can help lower risks of cancer and other diseases. Plus, studies have even found it to have blood pressure lowering effects and increase skin hydration.
  • Sugar-Free Treats: Sugar-free candies can be just as tasty and lower your risk of tooth decay.

After satisfying your sweet tooth, be sure to drink water, which helps neutralize harmful acids and rinse away leftover candy particles. You should wait approximately 30 minutes before instructing your child to brush their teeth after having sweets to avoid harming your dental enamel which is in a softened state due to acidity.

Avoid potential dental issues from consuming too much Easter candy! Remember, you can avoid developing cavities with the right plan of action and by following proper oral health guidelines. Proper oral health and seeing your dentist regularly is essential for keeping your pearly whites shining and healthy. If you are having a hard time trying to get your children to brush twice a day for two minutes each time, try implementing fun activities that promote brushing, including videos, books, coloring pages, and even music while brushing.

This pandemic has impacted us all, but our community is indeed all stronger together. Our team at WDG always has your safety and health as our top priority, and we have implemented additional safety measures and equipment to help prevent the transmission of all infections, including COVID-19. Wellesley Dental Group has completely reopened since June 8th, 2020 for all dental procedures and cleanings! Thank you for entrusting your health and dental care to us at Wellesley Dental Group.

Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group if you have any thoughts or concerns; they will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist, Dr. Bahar Houshman and Dr. Marisa Reason is happy to help with your TMJ and orthodontic needs. For wisdom teeth extractions or any other oral surgery needs, Dr. Reisman would love to help, and our gum-specialist Dr. Singh can help with your gum-related concerns.

References:

https://www.colgate.com/en-us/oral-health/kids-oral-care/4-fun-dental-activities-for-children

https://connect2local.com/l/21843/c/259446/3-important-dental-care-tips-for-kids-during-easter

https://www.google.com/url?sa=i&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.sunrisedentalcare.com%2Fblog%2Fyour-tooth-friendly-guide-to-easter-candy%2F&psig=AOvVaw3D_Xk2BH6B3Ln2j7qz51Oi&ust=1617635975436000&source=images&cd=vfe&ved=0CAIQjRxqFwoTCPC1sPHx5O8CFQAAAAAdAAAAABAQ

https://www.google.com/url?sa=i&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.littlestepsasia.com%2Fjakarta%2Fshop%2Fkids-shops%2Ffabulous-sticky-candy%2F&psig=AOvVaw02pyEfUSqS5GSZ0_wf-4EG&ust=1617636140871000&source=images&cd=vfe&ved=0CAIQjRxqFwoTCPCMzrHy5O8CFQAAAAAdAAAAABAI

https://www.google.com/url?sa=i&url=https%3A%2F%2Fspy.com%2Fgallery%2Fbest-sour-candies%2F&psig=AOvVaw0fO87AOzcS3q_GIzc6tfAK&ust=1617636251611000&source=images&cd=vfe&ved=0CAIQjRxqFwoTCIiE3OTy5O8CFQAAAAAdAAAAABAe

https://za.pinterest.com/pin/520799144394923333/

What Can I Do If I've Been Vaccinated?

March 22nd, 2021

With COVID-19 vaccines rolling out and progressively becoming more available throughout the U.S., it has been an important piece of the puzzle in helping us fight against COVID-19 and gain back a sense of normalcy. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have reported the existing available vaccines to be safe and effective in lowering your risk of getting COVID-19 and helping prevent severe illness following infection with COVID-19. There is still research being done to determine the efficacy of the vaccines in fighting other variants of COVID-19. In addition, the length of time the vaccines offer protection against COVID-19 is still being investigated.

The CDC cautions that as more information is found on the impact of the vaccines in helping to lower the spread of COVID-19, safety precautions in public spaces such as wearing a mask, social distancing with 6-feet distance between others, frequent hand-washing, and avoiding crowds should still continue even if you are vaccinated. In addition, fully vaccinated individuals should still continue to follow guidance set by individual employers. However, individuals who have been fully vaccinated do have some more freedom in terms of being able to begin doing certain activities that they were unable to do during the beginning of the pandemic. As reported by the CDC, this includes:

  • Gathering indoors with fully vaccinated people without wearing a mask.
  • Gathering indoors with unvaccinated people from one different household than your own without wearing masks if the individuals are low-risk for severe illness from COVID-19. This should be avoided if individuals are at an increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19 infection.
  • If in contact with someone diagnosed with COVID-19, you do not need to quarantine from others or get a COVID test unless you develop symptoms or unless you live in a group home or group facility.

Individuals are considered fully vaccinated if 2 weeks have passed after receiving two doses of the vaccine in the two-dosed vaccinations including Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or 2 weeks have passed after receiving a single-dose vaccine such as Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine.

illustration of people eating insideThe CDC also recommends that people should still postpone traveling domestically and internationally. If travel is necessary, it is still necessary to follow the essential precautions as stated by the CDC.
If you have tested positive for COVID-19 or are symptomatic, you should not visit with individuals or gather in public places, regardless of whether vaccinated or not. As more information on vaccinations and COVID-19 become available, the CDC will continue to update recommendations for all individuals on their website.

This pandemic has impacted us all, but our community is indeed all stronger together. Our team at WDG always has your safety and health as our top priority, and we have implemented additional safety measures and equipment to help prevent the transmission of all infections, including COVID-19. Wellesley Dental Group has completely reopened since June 8th, 2020 for all dental procedures and cleanings! Thank you for entrusting your health and dental care to us at Wellesley Dental Group.

Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group if you have any thoughts or concerns; they will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist, Dr. Bahar Houshman and Dr. Marisa Reason is happy to help with your TMJ and orthodontic needs. For wisdom teeth extractions or any other oral surgery needs, Dr. Reisman would love to help, and our gum-specialist Dr. Singh can help with your gum-related concerns.

References:

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/keythingstoknow.html

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/fully-vaccinated-guidance.html

https://www.google.com/url?sa=i&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.phila.gov%2F2021-01-12-city-announces-schedule-of-priority-populations-for-covid-19-vaccine%2F&psig=AOvVaw15qHF05S5cpgFG2cDgSveK&ust=1616454376374000&source=images&cd=vfe&ved=0CAIQjRxqFwoTCPi3tf-_wu8CFQAAAAAdAAAAABAD

Finding yourself Grinding your Teeth?

March 5th, 2021

Many have noticed they might clench or grind their teeth on occasion, especially when stressed out. As you may know, teeth grinding, also known as bruxism, can cause damage to your teeth and even lead to other oral health issues. For instance, it can cause your teeth to fracture, diminish in size, become loose, or even lead to the loss of teeth. This can result in the need for expensive dental procedures down the line, such as crowns, root canals, bridges, or prostheses to replace missing teeth including implants or partial dentures.

As the COVID-19 pandemic persists, dentists across the nation, and even world, are seeing some of the toll it has taken on individuals, even on their teeth. There has been a significant increase in reported teeth grinding and other oral health issues since the start of the pandemic, as reported by the American Dental Association’s Health Policy Institute. A survey conduced by the American Dental Association (ADA) found that there has been a 59.4% increase in cases of teeth grinding and clenching found in dental offices since the start of the pandemic. In addition, they found that temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ), and chipped and cracked teeth has increased over 50%, which may be associated with the increased teeth grinding. Although there is not a direct correlation between the increase in teeth grinding and the COVID-19 pandemic, Dr. Matt Messina, clinic director of Ohio State Upper Arlington Dentistry, stated, “it does demonstrate the signs of increased stress in the population.”

Teeth grinding can even be experienced in children, too. In fact, approximately 15% to 33% of children grind their teeth. Often, it has been found that children may grind their teeth during the time when their baby teeth begin to come in and also during the transition into their permanent dentition. Luckily, teeth grinding in children is often not permanently damaging and children often outgrow the habit.

Many people commonly grind their teeth when they are sleeping, and is often pointed out by individual's partners or loved ones who hear them doing this habit at night. This phenomenon is particularly present in individuals who have sleep disorders, malocclusion, and/or  crooked teeth. Individuals who grind their teeth may be pained by a dull, constant headache when they wake up, or even a sore jaw. Teeth grinding can result in or worsen Temporomandibular disorders (TMD). 

Some other symptoms of teeth grinding include:

  • Neck pain.
  • Ear pain.
  • Jaw pain, soreness and stiffness.
  • Painful or sensitive teeth.
  • Pain while you chew.
  • Popping, clicking or grinding noises when moving the mouth and jaw.
  • Cracking or chipping of teeth or fillings.
  • Loose teeth or pain on biting.

You may be wondering what to do about teeth grinding. Some tips to help stop teeth grinding include avoiding certain foods and drinks such as alcohol, caffeine, sodas, and chocolate. Plus, it can help to try to help relax your jaw muscles by holding a warm washcloth against your cheek. If you notice that you grind your teeth during the daytime, try to become conscious of what your are doing, and position the tip of your tongue  between your teeth to help train your jaw muscles to relax. Try avoiding chewing gum as it can increase the strain on your jaw muscles. 
If you think teeth grinding may be happening during your sleep, or even find yourself doing it throughout the day, it is important to talk with your dentist. Commonly, dentists will recommend a night guard for individuals suffering from teeth grinding to wear at night to help protect the surfaces throughout sleep. Other treatments that have been found to be beneficial include stress counseling, jaw relaxation training, exercising, and muscle relaxants or anti-inflammatory medications. However, treatments are determined after a comprehensive examination and diagnosis by your dentist.
This pandemic has impacted us all, but our community is indeed all stronger together. Our team at WDG always has your safety and health as our top priority, and we have implemented additional safety measures and equipment to help prevent the transmission of all infections, including COVID-19. Wellesley Dental Group has completely reopened since June 8th, 2020 for all dental procedures and cleanings! Thank you for entrusting your health and dental care to us at Wellesley Dental Group.

Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group if you have any thoughts or concerns; they will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist, Dr. Derek, and Dr. Emad is happy to help with your TMJ and orthodontic needs. For wisdom teeth extractions or any other oral surgery needs, Dr. Stephens would love to help, and our gum-specialist Dr. Singh can help with your gum-related concerns.

References:

https://health.usnews.com/health-care/patient-advice/articles/what-to-do-about-teeth-grinding

https://www.google.com/url?sa=i&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.dentalcare.com%2Fen-us%2Fpatient-education%2Fpatient-materials%2Fteeth-grinding-bruxism&psig=AOvVaw3cEiLNHlmlO4Bq2J1TDNv0&ust=1614995968340000&source=images&cd=vfe&ved=0CAIQjRxqFwoTCMiJqoOHmO8CFQAAAAAdAAAAABAK

https://www.webmd.com/oral-health/guide/teeth-grinding-bruxism

Every Body Has a Seat at the Table: Eating Disorder Awareness

February 21st, 2021

Every year, many organizations and individuals across the nation recognize National Eating Disorders Awareness Week (#NEDAwareness), which is the biggest and most recognized eating disorders education effort in the United States. This year, NEDAwareness Week runs from Monday, February 22 - Sunday, February 28. This national event aims is to shed light on eating disorders through educating, spreading hope, and making resources accessible to individuals in need. The theme for 2021 is "Every Body to Has a Seat at the Table."

According to the campaign, approximately 30 million people in the United States will be affected by an eating disorder during their lifetime. Even though this year brings additional challenges as we combat COVID-19, communities across the nation are still coming together to raise awareness through social media events, virtual discussions, and more informative and cool activities.

As reported by the National Eating Disorders Association, eating disorders have been found to be most common in teenagers and young adult women, although they can effect people of any gender or age. Eating disorders can negatively impact a person's physical and mental well-being, and have an effect on personal relationships, confidence, and overall performance at life tasks. In addition, eating disorders can have a significant impact on an individual's oral health. Your teeth, gums, and the surrounding oral tissues depend on healthy nutrients and a healthy diet.

Eating disorders can stem from many physical, mental and social hardships. If you suffer from an eating disorder, it’s important to talk to your health care providers so that proper diagnosis and treatment can begin.

So, what are some of the different types of eating disorders?

  • Anorexia: Individuals with anorexia may experience severe fear of gaining weight and may experience negative thoughts on the way their body appears. Signs may include individuals starving themselves to avoid gaining weight, and excessive exercise.
  • Bulimia: This condition is similar to anorexia in the sense that individuals may also have fears of being overweight. However, individuals may also experience periods of overeating/binge eating followed by self-induced vomiting, purging, misusing laxatives, or fasting throughout the day or several times throughout the week.
  • Binge Eating or Compulsive Overeating: This condition involves individuals who binge eat but do not regularly try to purge the food. Individuals may experience feelings of guilt, making it easier to continue to overeat.

In fact, your dentist may be the first to notice the signs of an eating disorder as changes in the mouth are often the first physical signs that become noticeable. Unfortunately, eating disorders can cause permanent damage to the teeth and oral tissues. Recognizing the signs of an eating disorder early can help lead to a better and easier road to recovery for the body and mouth.

Some of the oral consequences of eating disorders include:

  • Easily bleeding gums
  • Swollen salivary glands which may cause Individuals to experience chronic dry mouth, increasing the risk of developing tooth decay.
  • Lack of nutrients that promote healthy teeth such as calcium, iron and vitamins B and D can also increase the risk of developing tooth decay and gum disease. Lack of iron can lead to the development of oral sores. Similarly, improper amounts of vitamin B3/niacin can lead to bad breath (halitosis) and the development of oral canker sores. Gums may also become puffy and red.
  • Frequent vomiting causes the tooth enamel, or the outer layer of your teeth, to become weak, eroded, soft, and become yellow in color due to the highly acidic environment created from stomach acids. This can create tooth sensitivity when eating hot or cold foods or drinks, and eventually lead to tooth and tissue loss. As enamel wears away, the layer underneath, the dentin, can become exposed and in extreme cases the pulp, which is the next layer of the tooth underneath the dentin, can be exposed and cause infection and pulp death. Tooth decay can even be worsened by extensive tooth brushing following vomiting due to the acidity and weakened state of the mouth.

    Water should be rinsed with following purging to help reduce the high acidic content in the mouth. Vomiting can also induce inflammation, cuts, and soreness of the roof of the mouth/soft palate.

  • Degenerative arthritis of the jaw's temporomandibular joints (TMJ) are also associated with eating disorders. This can lead to jaw pain, chronic headaches, and problems chewing and opening/closing the mouth.

If you suffer from an eating disorder, it is important to contact a health professional. To help reduce associated oral health issues it is also important to maintain oral health care by proper tooth brushing and flossing, and frequent visits to your dentist. Your dentist may provide fluoride rinses or other products to help remineralize tooth enamel.

This pandemic has impacted us all, but our community is indeed all stronger together. Our team at WDG always has your safety and health as our top priority, and we have implemented additional safety measures and equipment to help prevent the transmission of all infections, including COVID-19. Wellesley Dental Group has completely reopened since June 8th, 2020 for all dental procedures and cleanings! Thank you for entrusting your health and dental care to us at Wellesley Dental Group.

Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group if you have any thoughts or concerns; they will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist, Dr. Derek, and Dr. Emad is happy to help with your TMJ and orthodontic needs. For wisdom teeth extractions or any other oral surgery needs, Dr. Stephens would love to help, and our gum-specialist Dr. Singh can help with your gum-related concerns.

References:

https://www.nationaleatingdisorders.org/get-involved/nedawareness

https://www.nationaleatingdisorders.org/dental-complications-eating-disorders

https://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/az-topics/e/eating-disorders

COVID-19 Vaccine: Here's What you need to Know

December 16th, 2020

It has been a long journey through the COVID-19 pandemic likely for everyone. As the coronavirus deaths in the United States have reached over 300,000 individuals, it can be challenging at times to see a silver lining. But, we are all stronger together and must continue to do our part in helping to keep ourselves and others safe and healthy during these challenging times. Now, news of the first doses of an FDA-authorized COVID-19 vaccine developed by Pfizer-BioNTech has been sent to all 50 states in the U.S., in addition to the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. The CEO of Pfizer reported that the company is aiming to make 1.3 billon COVID-19 vaccine doses across the world next year, and approximately 2.9 million doses of the vaccine will be received across the U.S. this week. As of right now the first doses of the vaccine are being distributed to health care workers due to the limited supply, and it may take months until the vaccine can be administered to the general public, according to CNN.

Sadly, the pandemic is not slowing down, with approximately 110,000 current COVID-19 hospitalizations reported in the U.S. on Monday, December 14th, as reported by the Covid Tracking Project. According to CNN, Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, warned that even with the introduction of a vaccine, "I don't believe we're going to be able to throw the masks away and forget about physical separation in congregate settings for a while, probably likely until we get into the late fall and early next winter.” He also commented on the effectiveness of the vaccine, stating, "It's going to be gradual, and I think we will know when we see the level of infection in the country at a dramatically lower level than it is right now that we can start gradually tiptoeing towards normality."

The vaccine is currently authorized for emergency use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has authorized it to be given to people 16 and older. CNN also reports that Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine is also being reviewed and may be the next in line to be authorized for emergency use in the near future. According to the FDA, the most commonly reported side effects of the vaccine were pain at the injection site, tiredness, headache, muscle pain, chills, joint pain, and fever. Most individuals reported these side effects after the second dose than after the first dose, and stated that the effects lasted typically for several days.

Some individuals may be concerned about receiving the COVID-19 vaccination, but the CDC reassures that routine processes and procedures remain in place for the safety and efficacy of the vaccines. Read more about how the U.S. vaccine safety system is ensuring the safety of COVID-19 vaccines.

Check out these benefits of getting a COVID-19 vaccine per the CDC:

This pandemic has impacted us all, but our community is indeed all stronger together. Our team at WDG always has your safety and health as our top priority, and we have implemented additional safety measures and equipment to help prevent the transmission of all infections, including COVID-19. Wellesley Dental Group has completely reopened since June 8th, 2020 for all dental procedures and cleanings! Thank you for entrusting your health and dental care to us at Wellesley Dental Group.

Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group if you have any thoughts or concerns; they will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist, Dr. Derek, and Dr. Emad is happy to help with your TMJ and orthodontic needs. For wisdom teeth extractions or any other oral surgery needs, Dr. Stephens would love to help, and our gum-specialist Dr. Singh can help with your gum-related concerns.

References:

https://www.cnn.com/2020/12/14/health/us-coronavirus-monday/index.html

https://www.fda.gov/emergency-preparedness-and-response/coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19/pfizer-biontech-covid-19-vaccine

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/8-things.html

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/vaccine-benefits.html

https://www.google.com/url?sa=i&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cdc.gov%2Fvaccines%2Fcovid-19%2Findex.html&psig=AOvVaw1iwzWjGykyfWV5jQZRpZWN&ust=1608221526923000&source=images&cd=vfe&ved=0CAIQjRxqFwoTCKC4vZzy0u0CFQAAAAAdAAAAABAJ

https://www.google.com/url?sa=i&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.thelocal.it%2F20201118%2Fhow-italy-is-preparing-for-a-covid-19-vaccine&psig=AOvVaw1iwzWjGykyfWV5jQZRpZWN&ust=1608221526923000&source=images&cd=vfe&ved=0CAIQjRxqFwoTCKC4vZzy0u0CFQAAAAAdAAAAABAO

Why Should I Wear a Mask?

December 11th, 2020

We've all had to adapt to a lot of changes in 2020, with masks being one of our daily life adjustments. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend everyone continue to wear masks to help lower the risk of spreading COVID-19, which has been found to be transmitted mainly through respiratory droplets from simply talking, coughing, sneezing, or even breathing. The use of masks is particularly important as COVID-19 can be spread from individuals who are not experiencing any symptoms but who are unknowingly infected with the virus. According to the CDC, not only do masks help prevent you from releasing respiratory droplets, but they also help reduce the risk of you inhaling  these droplets.The CDC reports that multi-layer cloth masks effectively block the exhalation of most large droplets (i.e., 20-30 microns and larger) in addition to up to 50-70% of aerosols smaller than 10 microns that are common when individuals speak.

Several studies have shown the benefits of communities universally wearing masks in helping to lower the spread of COVID-19, plus lowering the amount of mortality rates from the virus. As reported by the CDC, an economic analysis based on United States data revealed that increasing universal use of masks by 15% could prevent the need for lockdowns and lower associated losses of up to $1 trillion (approx. 5%) of gross domestic product. More research is actively being conducted to further explore the benefits of masks and determine filtering effectiveness for instance. The CDC states that they will update their recommendations as new scientific evidence becomes available.

According to the CDC, individuals aged two years and older should wear masks in public and when around people who don’t live in their household.​ In addition, individuals also should practice social distancing while wearing masks. In certain circumstances individuals should not wear a mask, including people who are younger than two years old, those with trouble breathing, and those who may have sensory, cognitive, or behavioral conditions for instance.

Be sure to wear your mask, for your safety and the safety of others! To follow social distancing guidelines and ensure safety, our office at WDG requires everyone entering the office to wear a mask. In addition, you can learn more about the increased safety and our latest equipment additions on our blog post: https://www.wellesleydentalgroup.com/blog/2020/05/whats-new-at-wdg-covid-19-safety-precautions

But, not all masks are created equally! Check out the types of masks that recommended vs. not recommended according to the CDC:

The CDC does not recommend using masks with exhalation valves/vents as respiratory droplets may exit the vents and contribute to the spread of COVID-19. Further research on these masks are ongoing.

The CDC also states that face shields or goggles should NOT substitute for masks and should not be placed on newborns or infants.

Experiencing skin trouble from wearing a mask? Take a look at these skin care recommendations on our blog: https://www.wellesleydentalgroup.com/blog/2020/07/the-latest-science-on-masks-plus-skincare-tips

This pandemic has impacted us all, but our community is indeed all stronger together. Our team at WDG always has your safety and health as our top priority, and we have implemented additional safety measures and equipment to help prevent the transmission of all infections, including COVID-19. Wellesley Dental Group has completely reopened since June 8th, 2020 for all dental procedures and cleanings! Thank you for entrusting your health and dental care to us at Wellesley Dental Group.

Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group if you have any thoughts or concerns; they will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist, Dr. Derek, and Dr. Emad is happy to help with your TMJ and orthodontic needs. For wisdom teeth extractions or any other oral surgery needs, Dr. Stephens would love to help, and our gum-specialist Dr. Singh can help with your gum-related concerns.

References:

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/cloth-face-cover-guidance.html

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/more/masking-science-sars-cov2.html?for-guid=b9fa359a-5e8b-11ea-9855-1267072b3abf&utm_source=usatoday-Coronavirus%20Watch&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=baseline_greeting&utm_term=newsletter_greeting

https://www.google.com/url?sa=i&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.wsj.com%2Farticles%2Fhow-face-masks-work-and-which-types-offer-the-best-covid-19-protection-11595946178&psig=AOvVaw3HcChEzTkC5EHBw-Zs0xGZ&ust=1606666959581000&source=images&cd=vfe&ved=0CAIQjRxqFwoTCLjKqYLTpe0CFQAAAAAdAAAAABAK

Keeping your Hands Germ-Free!

December 6th, 2020

National Handwashing Awareness Week is coming up (each 2nd week of December), and clean hands have never mattered more! With the COVID-19 pandemic still impacting all of our daily lives, it is of utmost importance to have excellent hand hygiene to help slow the spread of coronavirus and other infectious diseases.

No matter what time of day it is or what activity you are doing, germs can be all around us at any time. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), having good hand hygiene is an important step in preventing getting sick and spreading germs to others. Germs are easily spread from other people or surfaces, for example when touching your face with unwashed hands, eating or preparing food with unwashed hands, touching unclean surfaces, or blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing into unwashed hands.

Each December, National Handwashing Awareness Week is the perfect time to remind us all how big of an impact hand washing can have on our health. We all know how important keeping your hands clean is, but what exactly are the risks connected with not washing our hands? The CDC reports that proper handwashing with soap and water can prevent 1 in 3 diarrheal illnesses and 1 in 5 respiratory infections, such as a cold or the flu.

Check out these facts and tips for proper handwashing:  

The CDC recommends washing your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds (approximately the time it takes to sing the "Happy Birthday” song from beginning to end twice), or when unable, use a hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol to clean your hands. Although hand sanitizers can help quickly lower the number of germs on hands, they do not eliminate all types of germs.

So, be sure to keep your hands clean for your health and the health of others!

Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group if you have any thoughts or concerns; they will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist, Dr. Derek, and Dr. Emad is happy to help with your TMJ and orthodontic needs. For wisdom teeth extractions or any other oral surgery needs, Dr. Stephens would love to help, and our gum-specialist Dr. Singh can help with your gum-related concerns.

This pandemic has impacted us all, but our community is indeed all stronger together. Our team at WDG always has your safety and health as our top priority, and we have implemented additional safety measures and equipment to help prevent the transmission of all infections, including COVID-19. Wellesley Dental Group has completely reopened since June 8th, 2020 for all dental procedures and cleanings! Thank you for entrusting your health and dental care to us at Wellesley Dental Group.

References:

https://www.snapcomms.com/blog/national-hand-washing-awareness-week

https://www.nphic.org/nphichighlights/3811-newshighlight-2

https://www.google.com/url?sa=i&url=https%3A%2F%2Fpublichealthmaps.org%2Fcalendar%2F2020%2F12%2F7%2Fnational-handwashing-awareness-week&psig=AOvVaw01A9mphaql_005cSvgpOPR&ust=1606763146840000&source=images&cd=vfe&ved=0CAIQjRxqFwoTCJD6ybm5qO0CFQAAAAAdAAAAABAQ

https://nationaltoday.com/national-handwashing-awareness-week/#:~:text=National%20Handwashing%20Awareness%20Week%20%E2%80%93%20December%201%2D7%2C%202020

https://www.cdc.gov/handwashing/when-how-handwashing.html

https://www.google.com/url?sa=i&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.teachhub.com%2Fclassroom-activities%2F2020%2F06%2Fprojects-for-teaching-kids-about-germs%2F&psig=AOvVaw3rLpSPT1MpSWJPjJ-pdzgQ&ust=1606774453919000&source=images&cd=vfe&ved=0CAIQjRxqFwoTCNid1LzjqO0CFQAAAAAdAAAAABAJ

How to Prepare for a Safe Thanksgiving

November 25th, 2020

We’ve all had to make many sacrifices and adjust to a lot of change as we continue fighting through the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic. Much like all of the other holidays this year, Thanksgiving will be celebrated uniquely. For many families, Thanksgiving is marked by being surrounded by family and friends with lots of tasty food. Thanksgiving gatherings often involve families and loved ones, including parents, grandparents, friends, children, and college students traveling long distances to come together, but the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warns that travel greatly increases the risk of contracting and spreading COVID-19. It’s undeniable that individuals are starting to feel “pandemic fatigue,” as several months have passed since the onset of COVID-19. But health professionals and experts are cautioning individuals to be mindful and not relax on safety practices when it comes to the holidays. Coronavirus is still steadily increasing, with more than 1 million COVID-19 cases reported in the United States over the last week, according to the CDC. According to the Washington Post, Michelle DallaPiazza, an infectious diseases specialist at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School stated, “There is a real danger in complacency, and we are seeing the effects of that play out in real time…Across the country, we have begun to see another increase in infections and deaths after a period of time with low transmission.”

Health experts are encouraging individuals to stay home to protect yourself and others. If you are considering traveling and/or gathering for Thanksgiving, it is important to understand the risks involved and follow safe preventative guidelines when celebrating:

Traveling Safety Precautions:

If you are considering traveling for Thanksgiving, the CDC recommends asking these questions before making your decision to travel. Keep these safety guidelines in mind when traveling:

If You Are Sick, Stay Home

If you are experiencing symptoms or do not feel well stay at home and do not gather with others.

Wash Your Hands Frequently

It’s important to regularly and thoroughly wash your hands. Hand washing should last at least 20 seconds. When unable to wash your hands with soap and water, use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol content.

Wear your Mask

Be sure to wear your mask, only removing when eating and drinking. Keep your mask over your nose and mouth and ensure that it is tightly secured under your chin and against the sides of your face.

Keep it Small

Do your best to only be around a limited amount of people. If possible, plan for gatherings that only include people who live in the same house. If attending another household, to make the celebration safer bring your own food, drinks, plates, cups, and utensils.

Social Distance

Maintain social distancing guidelines of staying at least 6 feet apart (about two arm lengths apart) from individuals who do not live in the same household as you.

Celebrate Virtually

Try a virtual Thanksgiving dinner via FaceTime, Zoom, Skype, WhatsApp, or other social media platforms with your loved ones. You can share screens and watch television, sports, or play fun games!

The CDC classifies holiday activities into the following categories:

We wish you all a safe and happy Thanksgiving!

This pandemic has impacted us all, but our community is indeed all stronger together. Our team at WDG always has your safety and health as our top priority, and we have implemented additional safety measures and equipment to help prevent the transmission of all infections, including COVID-19. Wellesley Dental Group has completely reopened since June 8th, 2020 for all dental procedures and cleanings! Thank you for entrusting your health and dental care to us at Wellesley Dental Group.

Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group if you have any thoughts or concerns; they will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist, Dr. Derek, and Dr. Emad is happy to help with your TMJ and orthodontic needs. For wisdom teeth extractions or any other oral surgery needs, Dr. Stephens would love to help, and our gum-specialist Dr. Singh can help with your gum-related concerns.

References:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/health/holiday-coronavirus-family-gatherings/2020/10/30/3b938d48-14aa-11eb-bc10-40b25382f1be_story.html

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/holidays.html

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/holidays/thanksgiving.html

https://www.bassettcreekdental.com/news/2020/11/planning-safe-thanksgiving

Trick or Trivia! Happy Halloween

October 31st, 2020

For those who celebrate, we want to wish you a spook-tacular Halloween! As Halloween this year approaches during the COVID-19 global pandemic, we all may be wondering how to celebrate the occasion safely. Although Halloween, like many other occasions, will be celebrated differently this year as we fight through the COVID-19 global pandemic, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has released guidelines to help protect us all and celebrate the occasion safely.

Here's some fun, and maybe scary, dental facts that you may not have known. Take a look:

What is the hardest substance in the human body?
It's your tooth enamel, which is stronger than bone! It's important to take care of your tooth enamel, because once it's gone your body can not regenerate it.

Over the course of your lifetime, how much will you have brushed your teeth?
On average, an American will have spent approximately 38.5 days brushing their teeth over their lifetime. Don't forget, flossing is important too!

What are scary Halloween candies for your teeth?
Sour and sticky candies can linger on teeth and break down your tooth enamel due to the acidic content. When consuming candy, it is best to do so during meals when your mouth is producing a lot of saliva, which will help wash away the sugars and bacteria.

How much sugar and calories are in a typical Halloween stash?
The average Halloween candy bag collected by children has approximately between 3,500 and 7,000 calories. Plus, an article published in Fortune reported that children consume approximately three cups of sugar in 7,000 calories of candy, which is about 675 grams of sugar, or the same as eating about 169 standard sugar cubes!

What's the deal with soda?

Soda can be damaging to your tooth enamel and overall health. Did you know, there are 10-12 teaspoons of sugar in one can of soda! It has been found that individuals who drink 3 or more glasses of soda each day have 62% more cavities, dental fillings and tooth loss than individuals who do not. It is best to drink fluoridated water to help keep your pearly whites strong and healthy.

 

Is my tongue unique?

Yes, everyone's tongue print is different just like fingerprints. It's important not to forget about your tongue when brushing, as bacterial plaque can buildup on the tongue and even contribute to bad breath.

How often do people brush for?

The average American only brushes for about 45 to 70 seconds a day, however, the American Dental Association (ADA) recommended toothbrushing amount is for 2 minutes twice a day.

Typically during this time we are gearing up for our Annual Candy Drive. However, this year we have decided to cancel our 13th Annual Candy Drive, as our utmost priority as healthcare professionals is to keep our community safe and healthy, and we want to minimize any risk of transmission of COVID-19. But, we haven't let that damper our spirit of giving! We have created a new tradition this year, launching our Healthcare Heroes Appreciation Drive. We would love for you to participate by sharing your appreciation for healthcare professionals via cards or letters which can be dropped off or mailed to  to the Wellesley Dental Group office (5 Seaward Road, Wellesley 02481) by Monday, November 9th.

This pandemic has impacted us all, but our community is indeed all stronger together. Our team at WDG always has your safety and health as our top priority, and we have implemented additional safety measures and equipment to help prevent the transmission of all infections, including COVID-19. Wellesley Dental Group has completely reopened since June 8th, 2020 for all dental procedures and cleanings! Thank you for entrusting your health and dental care to us at Wellesley Dental Group.

Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group if you have any thoughts or concerns; they will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist, Dr. Derek, and Dr. Emad is happy to help with your TMJ and orthodontic needs. For wisdom teeth extractions or any other oral surgery needs, Dr. Stephens would love to help, and our gum-specialist Dr. Singh can help with your gum-related concerns.

References:

https://www.businessinsider.com/halloween-candy-consumption-usa-facts-statistics-2019-10#studies-show-that-kids-can-consume-up-to-three-cups-of-sugar-eating-halloween-candy-this-equals-almost-169-sugar-cubes-3

https://fi.pinterest.com/pin/501799583465517820/

http://www.etobicokedental.ca/blog/halloween-dental-quiz.html

https://www.childrensdentalvillage.net/patient/resources/interesting-facts/

http://madinsurance.com.au/the-dangers-of-sugary-drinks.html

Tricky Treats for your Teeth

October 14th, 2020

As pumpkin spice, reddish-orange leaves, and cool air highlight the season of fall, we also prepare for spooky Halloween festivities. Although Halloween will be celebrated differently this year as we all do our part to stop the spread of COVID-19, that doesn’t need to put a damper on your spirit! Check out these helpful tricks for how to safely celebrate Halloween this year.

We also need to be cautious about the sweet treats that deliciously mark this annual occasion. Unfortunately, the sweet treats can be a not-so-sweet trick to the health of your teeth! This is the perfect time to continue to reinforce good dental hygiene habits as the sugary candies begin to pile up. Here are a few tips on how to help keep minimize your risk of developing dental cavities (tooth decay):

  • Choose healthier treats: 

If you plan to give out goodie bags with treats this year, try to avoid purchasing candies that are sour, which can be highly acidic and tend to break down tooth enamel, as well as sticky candies like caramel, gummy worms, or jelly beans that stick to the surfaces of teeth for long amounts of time. It is also best to avoid hard candies that can potentially lead to tooth enamel fracture or choking hazards for young children. Instead, opt for healthier tooth-friendly treats such as granola bars or dark chocolate, for instance.

  • Sort through any candy received:

Along with frequent hand-washing and disinfecting received items, it is important to check that there are no dangerous items within your child’s Halloween stash. This is also a great opportunity to explain to your child which candies are best to avoid as mentioned above, and encourage healthier options.

  • Create a plan ahead of time:

Come up with a plan for Halloween to discuss with your family, including information about the importance of oral health and how their diet can impact the health of their teeth. Although it might be your child’s priority to collect large amounts of candy to consume during Halloween, their teeth will be what bears the consequence. It may be good to set a specific time when the Halloween treats can be eaten to help monitor how much and how frequently the sugar is being consumed. Remember, having things in moderation is key! An interesting point to note is that the frequency of consuming sugary foods and beverages matters. Each time you consume fermentable carbohydrates, the pH in your mouth drops as oral bacteria turn the sugar to acid, and thus makes the oral environment more acidic. If the pH drops below the critical pH of dental enamel (pH=5.5), this will lead to demineralization and the breakdown of the tooth enamel. So, be sure to let your child know that the amount of sugar and the frequency of sugar intake plays a role on the health of your teeth.

After satisfying your sweet tooth with Halloween treats, be sure to brush and floss.

Not to mention, every year around Halloween, WDG passionately gears up for our annual Candy Drive, which gets bigger and better each year all thanks to our lovely community! This year, out of an abundance of caution, we have decided to cancel the 13th Annual Candy Drive. Our utmost priority as healthcare professionals is to keep our community safe and healthy, and we want to minimize any risk of transmission of COVID-19. But, the celebration and spirit of giving will not stop, as we have launched our Healthcare Heroes Appreciation Drive. Check here for details and see how you can get involved.

This pandemic has impacted us all, but our community is indeed all stronger together. Our team at WDG always has your safety and health as our top priority, and we have implemented additional safety measures and equipment to help prevent the transmission of all infections, including COVID-19. Wellesley Dental Group has completely reopened since June 8th, 2020 for all dental procedures and cleanings! Thank you for entrusting your health and dental care to us at Wellesley Dental Group.

Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group if you have any thoughts or concerns; they will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist, Dr. Derek, and Dr. Emad is happy to help with your TMJ and orthodontic needs. For wisdom teeth extractions or any other oral surgery needs, Dr. Stephens would love to help, and our gum-specialist Dr. Singh can help with your gum-related concerns.

References:

https://amp.colgate.com/en-us/oral-health/conditions/cavities/how-to-prevent-cavities-from-halloween-candy-1013

https://www.webmd.com/oral-health/features/5-tricks-for-dealing-with-halloween-treats#1

https://www.nymetroparents.com/columnpic2/halloween-themed-recipes-for-kids.jpg?clear=1

https://www.google.com/url?sa=i&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.quora.com%2FWhat-is-the-Stephan-curve-in-dentistry&psig=AOvVaw16rt8napAYukKoiATxapbZ&ust=1602817587209000&source=images&cd=vfe&ved=0CAIQjRxqFwoTCLj37vrOtewCFQAAAAAdAAAAABAK

https://www.google.com/url?sa=i&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.sandytoesandpopsicles.com%2Fcelebrate%2Fhalloween%2Fparty-ideas-appetizers-dinner-desserts-printable-spookysnacks%2F&psig=AOvVaw28XEIEOrV1Da_ibHLAamUl&ust=1602817849822000&source=images&cd=vfe&ved=0CAIQjRxqFwoTCNihifzPtewCFQAAAAAdAAAAABAN

Got Dental Hygiene?

October 5th, 2020

October marks National Dental Hygiene Month, which was initiated by the American Dental Hygienists’ Association (ADHA) and Wrigley dating back to 2009. Even as we all battle through a global pandemic, the dental hygiene community remains grounded together and are remaining resilient as essential health care providers. As reported by the ADHA, their organization is the largest national organization, representing over 185,000 registered dental hygienists (RDHs) across the United States. Dental hygienists are a subgroup of oral health professionals, who help support you and you’re your smile through providing educational and preventative clinical care. This national observance focuses on promoting the importance of keeping your mouth, teeth and gums healthy, and best of all is a celebration of all of the fabulous work dental hygienists perform!

This year the ADHA is collaborating with Colgate® Oral Pharmaceuticals, Inc. to celebrate the perseverance of dental hygienists throughout challenging times such as now. In this year’s theme, the ADHA is encouraging dental hygienists to “show your face of courage,” by submitting a photo on their website that shows how you handle your day at work, or even at home.

As you may know, making an investment in your oral health can go a long way in helping maintain your overall health. There are so many important reasons for making dental health a priority, as what’s in your mouth can reveal a lot about what’s going on in the rest of your body. Not only can taking care of your teeth improve common conditions like bad breath, cavities, and gum disease, it can also help discourage the development or worsening of certain medical conditions like diabetes, heart disease, stroke, and a plethora of other health issues. These discoveries continue to get stronger with increasing research on the connection between oral health and systemic diseases.

So, it's fair to say that the mouth is a very special place, with many biological systems working at play. For instance, saliva is one of the body’s main defense mechanisms against bacteria and viruses that enter the mouth. Saliva is rich in specific proteins that can help weaken potentially harmful invaders. Certain conditions like dry mouth can lead to an increased risk for developing cavities, as the decreased amount of saliva can add to this phenomenon. But, saliva doesn’t totally kill all of the invaders, which is why practicing oral health is particularly important to control the bacteria within your mouth from causing harm. Taking it easy on brushing and flossing can lead to a buildup of dental plaque, which bacteria thrive on and consequently produce acids that can break down your tooth enamel. This can also lead to an infection within the gums, known as gingivitis, which can progress to periodontal disease if untreated. Unfortunately, periodontal disease can lead to irreversible changes within the mouth, including bone loss and ultimately tooth loss. Plus, bacteria from the mouth can spark inflammation not only within the mouth, but also in other parts of your body through travel through the bloodstream, as shown in many research studies.

So, how can you maintain good oral health? To celebrate this month in style, be sure to:

Floss Every Day

Flossing can be easy to forget, but should be part of your daily routine! Brushing cannot remove all of the left over food particles and dental plaque within the spaces between your teeth, which is where floss comes to the rescue. This is particularly important as many cavities develop in those hard-to-reach areas as bacteria become comfortable in the crevices.

Brush Twice a Day for Two Minutes

Brushing your teeth twice a day for two minutes is a key component of oral hygiene. But, there’s also a technique to it. Brushing effectively involves tilting your toothbrush at a 45 degree angle, which is angled toward the gum-line. Gently move your toothbrush in a back and forth motion, making sure the bristles are slightly underneath your gum-line (a spot where bacteria love to hide). Be careful not to brush aggressively, as this can lead to gum recession and cause other dental issues. Be sure not to miss a spot, and don’t leave your tongue out of the equation. Bacteria and food reside on your tongue and need to be brushed away. Removing the odor-causing bacteria can also help freshen your breath. This can be done using a toothbrush or a tongue scraper.

Rinse with Mouthwash

Rinsing with mouthwash can help reinforce the hard work you put into flossing and brushing. It helps rinse away any remaining particles and can have additional oral health perks included in the ingredients. Aim for purchasing an anti-microbial mouth rinse with fluoride in the composition, which can help promote tooth remineralization and lower the risk of developing tooth decay. Aim to make rinsing with mouthwash a regular occurrence after you brush and floss. Plus, mouthwash can hep tackle bad breath.

It’s also necessary to make your regular check-up appointments with your dentist and to avoid postponing treatment to help keep your pearly whites healthy.

This pandemic has impacted us all, but our community is indeed all stronger together. Our team at WDG always has your safety and health as our top priority, and we have implemented additional safety measures and equipment to help prevent the transmission of all infections, including COVID-19. Wellesley Dental Group has completely reopened since June 8th, 2020 for all dental procedures and cleanings! Thank you for entrusting your health and dental care to us at Wellesley Dental Group.

Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group if you have any thoughts or concerns; they will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist, Dr. Derek, and Dr. Emad is happy to help with your TMJ and orthodontic needs. For wisdom teeth extractions or any other oral surgery needs, Dr. Stephens would love to help, and our gum-specialist Dr. Singh can help with your gum-related concerns.

References:

https://nationaltoday.com/national-dental-hygiene-month/

https://www.colgateprofessional.com/education/patient-education/topics/systemic/why-a-healthy-mouth-is-good-for-your-body#:~:text=Good%20oral%20and%20dental%20hygiene,you%20ward%20off%20medical%20disorders.

https://www.adha.org/national-dental-hygiene-month

https://denverhighlandsdentist.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/Dental_Hygiene_9437.jpg

https://static1.squarespace.com/static/5952880320099e4af548b918/5a1f677cf9619aaae97f4388/5d89a532358ba566026565f6/1569891699719/1-OCT_NationalDentalHygieneMonth_2019-09-24.JPG?format=1500w

Risky Behavior: Vaping, Cigarette Use, and COVID-19

September 14th, 2020

We have all been impacted in some way by the COVID-19 pandemic, which makes us all in this fight together. Even though the virus still persists, great strides and global participation in social distancing, wearing face coverings, and following safety protocols are helping to stop the spread of the coronavirus. Scientists and researchers across the world are continuously uncovering important research and highlighting factors that increase the risk of battling coronavirus. From the beginning of the pandemic, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has emphasized, based on research and clinical expertise, that individuals with weakened immune systems, including older adults, and those with underlying medical conditions (examples: lung disease, heart disease, diabetes, kidney disease, and hypertension, just to name a few) are at an increased risk of severe COVID-19 illness. More recently a new study, published in the Journal of Adolescent Health and conducted by researchers at Stanford University School of Medicine, suggests teens and young adults who vape or smoke cigarettes are at an increased risk of COVID-19 infection.

Along with the COVID-19 pandemic (currently 29,182,627 worldwide cases and a disheartening 928,281 deaths reported), the devastating health crisis in many young adults: tobacco and electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes)/vaping product use, has still been an extensive public health issue across the nation. Back on September 24, 2019, the Governor of Massachusetts, Charles D. Baker, declared e-cigarette use a public health emergency following the significant link between e-cigarette products and severe lung disease leading to many deaths across the United States. Unfortunately, e-cigarettes have routinely been marketed as “safer” alternatives to cigarette smoking, although in reality they carry many of the same risks as well as new risks. The inhaled liquids are often composed of nicotine, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabinoid (CBD) oils, along with other substances. Each product, however, can have a variation of other ingredients and concentrations, which may be toxic to the body.

The study, entitled, Association Between Youth Smoking, Electronic Cigarette Use, and Coronavirus Disease 2019, consisted of an online survey conducted in May completed by 4,351 individuals across the United States ranging in age from 13 to 24 years old. The study participants were asked if they had ever used vaping products or cigarettes, and if they had vaped or smoked in the past 30 days. The participants were then divided between those who used nicotine products in comparison to those who reported never using nicotine products. The groups were asked if they had experienced COVID-19 symptoms, received a test for COVID-19, or tested positive for the virus. Taking into consideration reported medical conditions and sociodemographic factors, the researchers found that individuals who used both cigarettes and e-cigarettes in the last 30 days were approximately 5 times more likely to experience COVID-19 symptoms than those who never used nicotine products. Of the individuals who received a COVID test, those who had used e-cigarettes were 5 times more likely to be diagnosed with COVID-19 than those who never vaped. Plus, individuals who used both e-cigarettes and regular cigarettes within the last 30 days were approximately 7 times more likely to test positive for COVID-19. The study authors believe that the link between nicotine products and lung damage is thought to be the reason behind the resulting increased risk of coronavirus infection. "This study tells us pretty clearly that youth who are using vapes or are dual-using are at elevated risk, and it's not just a small increase in risk, it's a big one," Dr. Shivani Mathur Gaiha, one of the study's authors, warned.

Knowing the dangers about vaping and cigarette smoking is key. The Massachusetts Tobacco Cessation and Prevention Program offers information and resources that can help individuals quit. Also, check out a list of resources and other helpful information on our WDG blog here.

This pandemic has impacted us all, but our community is indeed all stronger together. Our team at WDG always has your safety and health as our top priority, and we have implemented additional safety measures and equipment to help prevent the transmission of all infections, including COVID-19. Wellesley Dental Group has completely reopened since June 8th, 2020 for all dental procedures and cleanings! Thank you for entrusting your health and dental care to us at Wellesley Dental Group.

Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group if you have any thoughts or concerns; they will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist, Dr. Derek, and Dr. Emad is happy to help with your TMJ and orthodontic needs. For wisdom teeth extractions or any other oral surgery needs, Dr. Stephens would love to help, and our gum-specialist Dr. Singh can help with your gum-related concerns.

References:

https://decisionsindentistry.com/2020/08/vaping-raise-risk-covid-among-teenagers-young-adults/

http://med.stanford.edu/news/all-news/2020/08/vaping-linked-to-covid-19-risk-in-teens-and-young-adults.html

https://www.news-medical.net/news/20200811/Smoking-and-vaping-significantly-increase-risk-of-COVID-19-in-teens-and-young-adults.aspx

https://www.tecc.org/tobacco-and-covid-19/

https://discoveries.childrenshospital.org/vaping-and-covid-19/

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