lung disease

COVID-19 Symptoms to Watch Out For!

November 10th, 2020

As the days pass, we can probably all say that we are counting the days until the world beats COVID-19. This global pandemic has created many obstacles and sadly has taken the lives of many. We remain united together and will continue doing our part to stop the spread of coronavirus. A lot of information and evidence based research continues to be gathered regarding the virus as time goes on, and it's important to stay abreast of all of the new findings to keep everyone safe and protected. As reported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), anyone exposed to COVID-19 can experience mild to severe symptoms. In particular, researchers have found that older individuals and individuals who have severe underlying medical conditions, such as heart or lung disease or diabetes, are at an increased risk for developing more serious complications from the virus.

So what exactly are the documented symptoms of COVID-19? Well, a wide range of symptoms have been reported, which typically have been found to appear approximately 2-14 days after exposure to coronavirus. Check out some of the more common symptoms reported by the CDC:

According to a study published in the journal Abdominal Radiology conducted by the University of Alberta faculty of Medicine & Dentistry, approximately 1 in 5 patients (20%) with COVID-19 may only show gastrointestinal symptoms. These symptoms can include abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and appetite loss. The article analyzed 36 studies conducted on COVID-19 symptoms starting in July 2020. Plus, the researchers found potential signs that radiologists should look for while conducting abdominal radiographs that could be evidence of COVID-19 infection. They noted signs of inflammation of the small and large intestines, air within the wall of the intestines (pneumatosis) and perforation (pneumoperitoneum). However, researchers reported that these symptoms are rare. Mitch Wilson, a radiologist and clinical lecturer in the University of Alberta's Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry, explained, "Seeing these things is not necessarily telling us a patient has COVID-19," said Wilson. "It could be from a variety of potential causes. But one of those potential causes is infection from the virus, and in an environment where COVID-19 is very prevalent, it's something to consider and potentially raise as a possibility to the referring physician."

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/2020/11/one-in-five-covid-19-patients-presents-only-with-gastrointestinal-symptoms/?inf_contact_key=45820791642b1ab6a6e4dcf7c731f3a0d18a532c4142cb79caf2b269de1401fa

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/11/201103104734.htm

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/symptoms-testing/symptoms.html

https://www.google.com/url?sa=i&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.elitecme.com%2Fresource-center%2Fcovid-19%2Fcovid-19-digestive-issues-and-common-symptoms&psig=AOvVaw1XjnenYq5fifIjEfELuYra&ust=1605048878955000&source=images&cd=vfe&ved=0CAIQjRxqFwoTCJi8kJfH9uwCFQAAAAAdAAAAABAD

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/

The Latest News on a COVID-19 Vaccine

August 5th, 2020

A new day brings new research! In times like these, we all are ready to resume some sense of normalcy. Currently, the best way to prevent sickness is to avoid exposure to the virus, which is mostly spread from person-to-person contact. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that everyone should continue washing their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, practice social distancing keeping a distance of at least 6 feet from others, wear a face covering, continuously clean and disinfect surfaces, and monitor your health daily.

Although there is currently no vaccine to prevent COVID-19, researchers across the globe are racing to produce a safe and effective vaccine to beat the virus. To date, there are currently 18,699,432 confirmed cases worldwide, with approximately 704,324 deaths reported. At the end of June, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced that AstraZeneca, a global biopharmaceutical organization, in collaboration with Oxford University, along with the United States based pharmaceutical company Moderna Inc., were leading the way with an experimental Covid-19 vaccine. AstraZeneca and Oxford University are currently in Phase 3 of human trials and plan to release results this October.

More recently, on July 30th the company Johnson & Johnson began conducting human safety trials of a COVID-19 vaccine after exhibiting positive results from the vaccine when tested on monkeys. The study was published in the science journal Nature. They found that out of 6 monkeys tested with a single dose of the COVID-19 vaccine candidate, all 6 were protected from lung disease and 5 were protected from COVID-19. Dr. Dan Barouch, a virologist at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston and a co-author of the new study mentioned, “It’s a very reassuring level of protection we saw.” Now it is the goal of Dr. Paul Stoffels, Johnson & Johnson’s chief scientific officer, to see whether or not these results will prove to have the same protective effect on humans. Johnson & Johnson plans to test the vaccine on 1,000 healthy individuals ranging in age from 18 to 55 years and 65 years and older. Their aiming to enter Phase 3 testing giving a single-shot to a greater portion of the population beginning in mid-September, while also studying the effectiveness of a two-shot COVID-19 vaccine.

But, this isn’t the only study going on! It is one of over 30 human trials for a COVID-19 vaccine across the globe. Two days prior to when Johnson & Johnson’s study was published, a comparable study from Moderna Inc. and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) was published. However, their vaccines function in battling COVID-19 differently. Moderna’s vaccine candidate sends genetic messenger RNA into cells, which results in the creation of a coronavirus spike protein, which is hypothesized to initiate the body’s immune response. Moderna Inc. is expected to begin Phase 3 trials during this first week of August. On the other hand, Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine candidate uses a modified version of a common cold virus, adenovirus type 26, to bring the coronavirus spike protein into the body to initiate an immune response.

Plus, scientists are also enthusiastic about Novavax’s vaccine candidate in Maryland. In one study, the company found that their vaccine provided protection against coronavirus infections in monkeys. In addition, another study found that 56 volunteer participants had antibodies against the virus and did not have any dangerous side effects. As Novavax continues with Phase 1 trials, they hope to produce 100 million doses of the vaccine by the start of 2021 if the vaccine is proven to be safe and effective.

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/2020/07/jj-begins-human-trials-of-its-one-dose-covid-19-vaccine/?inf_contact_key=4c127a488872b6b59f88388fe4b5590e7e470d92b8b75168d98a0b8cac0e9c09

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/07/30/health/covid-19-vaccine-monkeys.html

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/prevention.html

https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-coronavirus-who-development/astrazeneca-moderna-ahead-in-covid-19-vaccine-race-who-idUSKBN23X1WA

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/08/04/health/covid-19-vaccine-novavax.html

https://images.theconversation.com/files/341551/original/file-20200612-153812-ws3rqu.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&q=45&auto=format&w=754&fit=clip

Secondhand Smoke Is No Joke To Oral Health

May 29th, 2015

As you may have heard before, "secondhand smoke kills." It sure does. Nearly 54,000 people die each year from secondhand smoke. A combined total of more than 480,000 deaths a year are caused from smoking and secondhand smoke. It can sometimes be easy to forget that even non-smokers are in danger of health problems as a result of cigarette smoke. Not to mention, children are at a high risk of developing several chronic diseases and health issues because of secondhand smoke.

There are many reasons to avoid smoking, and in this article, we'll offer you yet another reason. Believe it or not, secondhand smoke can negatively impact your oral health. Although more research is needed in the area, it is believed that children are at risk of developing tooth decay from secondhand smoke.

15 studies were conducted and reviewed in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health by researchers in Japan about the possible correlation between secondhand smoke and the development of cavities in children. The studies reported weak to moderate evidence that secondhand smoke causes cavities in primary teeth, yet, more information is needed to make a conclusive argument.

Further, Researchers now have concluded that smoking is one of the causes of periodontal disease because tobacco can damage gums and leave teeth susceptible to infection. This makes smokers more at risk for developing periodontal disease. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately 47% of adults have either mild, moderate or severe periodontitis in the United States. The early stages of periodontal disease is gingivitis, which can eventually lead to periodontitis if untreated.

In a recent study funded by the National Institutes of Health-National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, researchers investigated the link between serum cotinine, a metabolite of nicotine, and periodontitis in U.S. non-smokers. The study found that non-smokers exposed to Environmental Tobacco Smoke (ETS) had 1.45 times the odds of moderate/severe periodontitis as unexposed non-smokers.

In addition, smokers and non-smokers exposed to secondhand smoke are more prone to significant amounts of oral bone loss. For example, research in the Journal of Periodontology showed the correlation between secondhand smoke and oral bone loss in rats. The study concluded that rats with periodontitis that were exposed to secondhand smoke were at greater risk of experiencing oral bone loss and ultimately tooth loss.

Along with serious oral issues, secondhand smoke has caused oral cancer, breast cancer, middle ear infections in children, pregnancy problems, asthma, lung disease, heart disease, among many other health problems.

If you are a smoker, quitting is the best option to keep yourself and those around you healthy. Whether being exposed in homes, cars, offices, or other public places, secondhand smoke is severely detrimental to oral and overall health.

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 and consultation.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist Dr. VanDr. Emad is happy to help with your orthodontic needs. For wisdom teeth extractions or any other oral surgery needs Dr. Ghazi would be more than willing to help.

References:

http://www.no-smoke.org/getthefacts.php?id=13

http://now.tufts.edu/articles/secondhand-smoke-and-cavities

http://www.cdc.gov/tobacco/data_statistics/fact_sheets/health_effects/tobacco_related_mortality/

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/03/150313083627.htm

http://helpforsmoking.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/SecondHandSmoke-43321674.jpg

Tongue Health is No Tongue-Twister!

March 9th, 2015

Girl Sticking Out TongueNever forget to brush your tongue! It's often referred to as the "strongest muscle in the body," yet it needs care. In this article, we will describe how you can care for your tongue, and then we will explain common health problems related to the tongue and what you should do if you see any symptoms of them. Armed with these facts, you can maintain a healthy mouth!Did you know that some toothbrushes are made specifically for your tongue? It’s true, but regular toothbrushes can get the job done too!  Place toothpaste on your brush and gently stroke your tongue from back to front to remove plaque and bacteria. Another option for brushing your tongue is to use a tongue scraper. Pull it across your tongue to clean it and improve your breath. Following these steps and practicing good oral hygiene, you can keep your tongue healthy!

Some people do develop tongue soreness or discoloration. Fortunately, these are often caused by easily treatable problems. One problem that people sometimes have is that their tongue develops a white coating or white spots. While there are a number of different conditions that can cause a tongue to have these symptoms, three of the most common causes of a "white tongue" include leukoplakia, oral thrush, and oral lichen planus. Leukoplakia occurs when too many cells grow in your mouth. The excessive amount of cells can cause white patches to form.  Although leukoplakia is usually not dangerous, it can sometimes be a precursor to cancer. A dentist can diagnose whether you have leukoplakia and inform you on how to treat it.

Oral thrush, also known as candidiasis, is another reason why some people have “white tongue.” Oral thrush is a yeast infection that can produce white patches on your mouth, including the tongue. It is especially common for infants and the elderly, individuals who use inhaled steroids to treat asthma or lung disease, and for those who have diabetes. It can also occur after a person uses antibiotics. See a dentist who can diagnose this infection and even provide you with medications to help cure it.

Oral lichen planus causes raised white lines to form on your tongue. Usually, doctors cannot diagnose the cause. Most of the time, this problem resolves on its own with time. Still, you can do your part to help your body get better by practicing proper dental hygiene and avoiding foods that irritate your mouth.

Other factors can cause a pink tongue to turn red. Vitamin deficiencies, geographic tongue (harmless condition causing red spots), scarlet fever, and kawasaki syndrome are frequent causes. If your tongue is an unhealthy red color, you may have vitamin deficiencies of B-12 or folic acid. You can simply take supplements in this situation. Kawasaki syndrome is an illness that affects the tongue's blood vessels and is usually seen in children less than five years of age. Children may develop a red tongue, a high fever, and redness in the hands and feet. Be sure to bring the child to the doctor immediately.

Some people have a black, hairy tongue. Fortunately, this is almost always benign. Your tongue has small bumps called papillae, which grow throughout your lifetime. For most people, daily activities wear down their papillae. However, for others, these bumps can continue to grow long. When papillae are long, more bacteria can live on them and create a dark, hairy appearance. Usually, this condition is seen in people who aren't practicing healthy dental hygiene or who are using chemotherapy or antibiotics. People with diabetes can also have this problem. Fortunately, a black, hairy tongue is usually not dangerous to your overall health.

 

Another common tongue condition involves painful, bumpy tongues. Causes include biting your tongue, canker sores, burning mouth syndrome, enlarged papillae, smoking, and other medical conditions.

Finally, be careful if you or someone has a swollen tongue. If the person also has trouble breathing, the person may have a severe allergic reaction and need emergency medical care. In rare cases, tongue problems can be symptoms of serious conditions, such as diabetes, anemia, and oral cancer can also cause tongue pain. Be sure to see a dentist and get a diagnosis if your pain is lasting for a significant amount of time. Follow these ideas to maintain a healthy tongue. Nobody wants a strawberry tongue!

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 and consultation.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist Dr. VanDr. Emad is happy to help with your orthodontic needs. For wisdom teeth extractions or any other oral surgery needs Dr. Ghazi would be more than willing to help.

References:

http://www.webmd.com/oral-health/tc/basic-dental-care-home-treatment

http://www.webmd.com/oral-health/guide/tongue-problem-basics-sore-or-discolored-tongue-and-tongue-bumps

http://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/az-topics/t/tongue-scrapers

http://www.everydayhealth.com/allergies/swollen-tongue.aspx

https://badabingbadabambadaboom.files.wordpress.com/2011/04/attitude.jpg

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