school

Healthy Start to the School Year

August 21st, 2019

Sometimes we often forget just how important our food choices are for our bodies. Especially when we are craving that most-delicious sweet that we all cannot resist! Things like candy and soda both typically fill our hearts desires, but as we all know they’re not on our good side. But, we truly do need to be more careful about what we eat, not only for your health but also for your pearly whites. Now that summer is soon coming to an end and school is approaching, it’s important to review what should be included on you and your child’s plate. Take a look at these healthy foods that can help satisfy your taste, and keep your mind, body, and teeth in good shape!

Dairy

Dairy products like cheese, milk, and yogurt make great tooth-friendly snacks. Cheese can help lower the risk of tooth decay by raising the pH, making the mouth less acidic. Not to mention, dairy is often full of protein and nutrients that help keep your enamel strong, like calcium. Yogurt contains healthy bacteria, also known as probiotics, which are known to help with digestion and fight off bad bacteria. Dairy is also typically low in sugar, making it a great pick for your lunch.

Nuts

 

Nuts are low in sugar, and are full of protein and minerals that are great for your overall health. Plus, chewing nuts helps trigger saliva production, which can lower your risk for tooth decay. Try tossing them in salads, or grab a bag of them to add to your lunchbox.

 

Hight Fiber Foods/Vegetables

Foods high in fiber such as leafy greens are the way to go when looking for something healthy! It aids digestion, promotes good cholesterol levels, and enhances saliva production necessary for protecting your teeth. Not only are they low in calories, but they're also loaded with vitamins and minerals.

Water

Staying hydrated with water, particularly fluoridated water, is key for keeping your body healthy. Fluoride is an important component as it helps remineralize tooth enamel and makes teeth more resistant to decay.

Apples

An apple a day can actually be good for your health and smile! Apples contain a great amount of fiber and water, and help act similarly to a toothbrush by helping to remove food particles from your teeth.

Carrots

Crunchy carrots also help stimulate saliva production and are a great source of fiber and vitamin A. They make a great snack by themselves or added to salad.

Cranberries

Cranberries have been found to protect your smile by helping keep plaque from sticking to teeth with the help of polyphenols.

Sugarless gum

For all of the gum lovers, sugar-free gum is the best option for your pearly whites. Chewing sugarless gum helps increase saliva production and helps wash away leftover food particles that bacteria feed on.

Prevention is the best way to keep your body and smile in tip-top shape. One method of prevention is to carefully choose healthy foods full of essential nutrients.

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.colgate.com/en-us/oral-health/basics/nutrition-and-oral-health/healthy-foods-list-seven-best-foods-for-your-teeth-0214

https://www.livescience.com/44111-foods-healthy-teeth-bad-breath.html

Images:

nutrition_In_LR_practice_iStock_000047508612_Large.jpeg25932213_mtiny-e1502879079770.jpg, Dairy Industry 500w.jpg, Mix_Nuts-1-min.jpg, splash.jpg, 0000000004129, 6133tP0T3gL.jpg31kRRLGy68L.jpgCIN_IndTrends_0616_slideshow01.jpg

Start the School Year Off Smiling!

August 31st, 2018

As the hot summer days and fun of summer are winding down, Labor Day and the beginning of the new school year are approaching! This is the time of year full of back-to-school shopping, final summer getaways, and lots of errands. But what's missing from this list? You're child's dental appointment!

Poor Oral Health is Connected to Lower School Grades

Surprisingly, tooth decay is the most common childhood disease, topping both asthma and allergies. It is important to catch dental problems early because it can lead to more school absences and missed work for parents. A study reported that for every 100 students, approximately 117 hours of school is missed per year as a result of oral health problems. Not to mention, it has been reported that children who experienced tooth pain were four times more likely to have a low grade point average below the average 2.8 GPA when compared to children not experiencing tooth pain. Tooth pain and untreated cavities can be a distraction to learning and may cause your child not to be focused in school.

It is important to prevent dental issues by teaching children good oral hygiene care at home, as well as scheduling regular dental check-ups. This will not only protect your child’s oral health, but also their success in school! Don’t forget your child needs a dental check-up at least two times a year.

Also, if your child is thinking about playing sports in the fall, make sure they have the necessary protection they need to keep their pearly whites safe. Approximately 39% of dental injuries happen during sports. A custom-fitted protective mouth guards is needed for all children playing contact sports, including football, wrestling, and so on. This will protect them from gum damage, tooth loss, and jaw problems.

Sending your child back to school with a happy smile and healthy mouth will be the best kick-off to a great school year!

Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and their newest addition to the team, Dr. Zarah Ali, if you have any thoughts or concerns. Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist Dr. Van. Dr. Emad is happy to help with your orthodontic needs. For wisdom teeth extractions or any other periodontal or oral surgery needs, Dr. Ghazi would be more than willing to help.

The caring team at Wellesley Dental Group 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.

References:

https://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/babies-and-kids/back-to-school

https://www.colgate.com/en-us/oral-health/life-stages/childrens-oral-care/ada-08-poor-oral-health-can-mean-missed-school-lower-grades

back-to-school-t.jpg

10 years, 10,000 pounds

November 10th, 2017

[caption id="attachment_10488" align="alignleft" width="1024"] Dr. Zarah Ali, Queen of the candy[/caption]

Thank you to our wonderful community for helping make our 10th Annual Candy Drive a huge success. Every year, the drive grows in size and scope. What started as a small candy buy back with a handful of local kids has grown into an endeavor that spans the Metrowest: this year, we have 41 number of schools participating, along with numerous businesses and organizations. Best of all, we have collected more candy than ever before: we have shattered a record of nearly 10,000 pounds of candy. To be exact, if anyone is curious, we collected 9,883.3 pounds of candy.

I’m sure everyone is wondering what we’re going to do with so much candy - and no, we will not be eating it all! The candy will be assembled into care packages and distributed to our troops all over the world. This is no small feat, and we are beyond thankful to be working with CarePacks, a non-profit organization who helps us make this happen.

Thank you to our troops and veterans for everything they do to keep us safe.The dedicated men and women who serve us overseas deserve so much more than we can offer; we simply hope these small treats offer a little taste of home, and a token of our gratitude.

Last but not least, congratulations to the winning school this year: Katherine Lee Bates Elementary School in Wellesley! They received our $1000 Grand Prize for the most candy collected per student.

 

Stay tuned for more pictures.

[caption id="attachment_10476" align="alignleft" width="797"] Our 3 Drs. Ali in front of nearly 10, 000 pounds of candy #sweettooth[/caption]

Transfer of Oral Microbes From Children To Children

October 25th, 2016

Microbes don't just get passed on within the family from mother to children. A recent study at the University Of Alabama at Birmingham Department of Biology and School of Dentistry found that children may acquire microbes from other unrelated children as well.

Despite the fact that data has shown that one particular strain of the bacteria Streptococcus mutans, which is  known to cause tooth decay, is only transferred from mother to children, this microbe was found in 72 percent of children whose family members living with them were unaffected. This high percentage shows that children can contract microbes from other children at schools and nurseries as well as opposed to just from their family members.

Stephanie Momeni, author of the study, claims that interactions involving saliva such as sharing a drinking cup or ice cream cone can lead to the transfer of microbes. Therefore, make sure your kids have their own set of containers and cups before heading to school or daycare!

Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and their newest addition to the team, Dr. Zarah Ali, if you have any thoughts or concerns. The caring team at Wellesley Dental Group 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 periodontal or oral surgery needs, Dr. Ghazi would be more than willing to help.

Resources:

http://www.raisehealthyeaters.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/dreamstime_10469309.jpg

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/07/160725105219.htm

Labor Day Celebrations and Activities!

September 2nd, 2016

Happy Labor Day!

Labor Day, which takes place on the first Monday in September every year, honors the social and economic contributions of hard-working Americans to the freedom and strength of the country.

Did you know that the holiday is over a hundred years old? The first Labor Day celebration happened in New York City on Tuesday, September 5, 1882 as proposed by the Central Labor Union. In 1884, the Central Labor Union chose the first Monday in September as the official holiday. The expansion of labor unions allowed the idea to spread to many industrial centers in 1885. Street parades were held to show the embody the strong spirit of trade and labor unions.

While many businesses, schools, and federal organizations close on Labor Day, you can still enjoy your last few days of sweet summertime before back-to-school season starts with some of these fun and interactive Labor Day weekend activities!

  1. Labor Day Weekend Fireworks Show @ Boston Harbor
    Best viewing locations: Christopher Columbus Park, Long Wharf in the North End, the South Boston Waterfront around Fan Pier/Seaport, the Downtown Waterfront, and Piers Park
  2. Go on a cruise! Suggestions: Inner Harbor Sightseeing Cruise, Boston Harbor Sunset Cruise, Charles River & Locks Cruise, Codzilla Boat Ride
  3. Boston Wine Tasting & Walking Tour
  4. Take a day trip to Martha's Vineyard
  5. Tour of the USS Constitution
  6. Walk around the historical Lexington & Concord
  7. Dine at one of the Seaport Waterfront Restaurants
  8. Check out Fenway Park and watch a Red Sox game!

Fun With Kids:

  1. Whale Watching
  2. Go on a swan boat ride and take a stroll in Boston Common
  3. Water Country Water Park
  4. Watch a performance by the Blue Man Group

Resources:

https://www.bu.edu/today/files/2015/05/h_butoday_14079424739_abcc55cffa_o.jpg

https://www.dol.gov/general/laborday/history

http://www.boston-discovery-guide.com/boston-labor-day.html

http://wdgblog.com/happy-labor-day/

http://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/babies-and-kids/back-to-school/?source=promospots&content=rotator&medium=backtoschooltips

Donate a Prom Dress, Belle of the Ball

March 17th, 2016

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Anton’s Cleaners is sponsoring the 12th annual Belle of the Ball  drive to collect, clean, and then distribute prom gowns to high school junior and senior girls.  These girls are nominated by community members, teachers, and others and would not normally be able to afford to attend prom.

Our team at the Wellesley Dental Group loves being Smile Ambassadors for the community and are happy to be a drop off site for this gown drive. If you have any gently worn or new prom gowns and you’d like to help, please bring your gowns to our office, 5 Seaward Rd Wellesley Hills, by March 25th and we will make sure to get them to a local Anton’s for cleaning and distribution.

This is a great opportunity to put a smile on someone's face! For more information on this event, please check out their website.

Listen up, Kids: Dental Care for Children

October 9th, 2015

kidBelieve it or not, a third of children today have tooth decay before even starting school. According to statistics published by the Health & Social Care Information Centre, tooth decay is one of the main causes of hospital visits for children in elementary school. Surprisingly, 25,812 children ranging from ages 5 to 9 went to the hospital for tooth extractions in the last year alone.

Here are some tips below on how to protect your child’s teeth to make sure that your child doesn’t become part of these statistics!

  1. Drink less fruit juice!

Just because fruit juice is nutritious and often rich in vitamin C does not mean that it’s also beneficial for your teeth! Many juices have around the same amount of sugar as that in sodas, or even more. For instance, NPR states that apple juice contains 65.8 grams of sugar per liter, while cola contains 62.5 grams of sugar per liter. This copious amount of sugar leads to tooth decay. Furthermore, the acid from the juice destroys the enamel of teeth, which can cause teeth to deteriorate. Even the British Dental Association claims that 50% of children ranging from four to 18 years old show these signs.

Because of these harmful effects of fruit juice, dentists recommend water and milk as healthy beverage alternatives for children. If your child is still craving fruit juice, try to dilute it as much as possible and make sure that your child has a meal with it. Also, try your best to avoid letting your child have too much contact time with the cup and his or her teeth and instead opt for using a straw.

 

  1. Avoid dried fruit !

Dried fruit isn’t a good replacement for candy it has a great deal of sugar, and even worse, its sticky texture clings onto your child’s teeth. Due to these unhealthy properties, dried fruit can ruin enamel and rot your little one’s molars. Although chocolate isn’t a great option, dark chocolate is known to  be rich in antioxidants that help prevent the spread of tooth-decay causing bacteria.

Whole fruit can be a better option than dried fruit and fruit juice because it contains water and fibers that help wash away sugar from teeth. However, try not to feed your child more than one or two low-sugar fruit pieces (strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, kiwis, peaches, and pears) instead of high-sugar fruit pieces (grapes or pineapple) per day. Incorporate fruit into meals rather than simply having them as snacksBreadsticks, toast, cheese, nuts, or seeds are some healthier snack alternatives.

 

  1. Baby teeth matter!

It's important not to presume that just because baby teeth are not permanent, that they should not be taken care of! Your child’s permanent teeth are at a higher risk of decay and other dental problems when primary teeth decay. Baby tooth decay could lead children to experience dental anxiety, which could make them less likely to visit the dentist later on.

 

  1. Help your child brush his/her teeth!

Depending on how mature your child is, you should help brush your child’s teeth until at least age seven to ensure that they are using proper brushing techniques. 

 

  1. Proper brushing techniques!
  • Don’t let your child brush his/her teeth right after eating, particularly after eating or drinking something acidic. Doing so will brush the enamel away! Your child should either brush before eating breakfast or wait an hour after the meal. Chewing sugar-free gum can also be an effective way to clean teeth, because it produces saliva, which defends against decay, and brings mouths back to a neutral pH level.
  • It doesn’t matter if your child uses a manual or electric toothbrush. What’s important is that the brushing lasts for at least two minutes! Electric toothbrushes often have built-in timers, so this feature can be effective.
  • Don’t let your child rinse the toothpaste away right after brushing! The fluoride in the toothpaste can keep protecting his or her teeth for 30 minutes. Children under three should use toothpaste with 1,000 fluoride parts per million, while children over three should use adult toothpaste that contains 1,450 fluoride parts per million.

For many parents, the first time they took their children to the dentist was when their children were at least one year old. However, parents should set their first appointment for when their children’s teeth begin to come out, which is around five to six months old. Further oral health tips for children can be found here.

This past spring, we welcomed Dr. Van, our Pediatric Dentist, onto our caring team at the Wellesley Dental Group! Dr. Van strongly believes in the importance of creating a fun and welcoming atmosphere for patients as well as parents. One of his goals is to introduce good dental habits to our youth, preventing dental diseases later on in life.

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://mouafaqbtc.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/b4054a_0d4b9e685762e624649fbf8898f77c87.jpg

http://www.express.co.uk/life-style/health/609471/Children-dental-care-truths-myths

http://www.thedentistar.com/images/import/images/glenview-kids-dentist.jpg

http://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2014/06/09/319230765/fruit-juice-vs-soda-both-beverages-pack-in-sugar-and-health-risk

Happy Labor Day!

September 7th, 2015

laborToday, the first Monday in September, is an annual celebration of American workers and their contributions and achievements!

Labor Day is typically viewed as a day of rest as many businesses, schools, and federal organizations are closed. Labor day also represents the end of summer or start of the back-to-school season for many individuals, and is often celebrated with parades, picnics, fireworks, and other fun events.

The first Labor Day holiday was celebrated in 1882, in New York City, and was promoted by the Central Labor Union. The celebration was accompanied with a street parade and speeches from leading women and men in the work field. With the expansion of labor organizations, the holiday began to spread across the states until eventually becoming a federal holiday in 1894. However, even after more than 100 years, it is still not clear as to who first suggested this holiday. Some people believe that Peter J. McGuire, general secretary of the Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners, and a cofounder of the American Federation of Labor, was the founder of Labor Day. Others believe that Matthew Maguire, secretary of the Central Labor Union in New York, first introduced the holiday.

As you enjoy the day off with family and friends, keep your smile health in mind.  There are several tooth-friendly snack alternatives for you and your children to enjoy.

Here are a few healthy Labor Day treats:

  • Watermelon
  • Frozen Greek yogurt with berries
  • Shrimp cocktail 
  • Cucumber pita pocket 
  • Baked peaches 
  • Cheese Platter

If you're near the Boston area, here's a few cool events that you and your family may enjoy:

Oysters & Craft Brews Cruise: Sip & Slurp - Karma Crew Yacht Charters, Boston Harbor
Boston Harbor Island Cruise: History, Mysteries, and More - Departs from Rowes Wharf on a 1920s-style mini-yacht
All-Day Paintball Pass (deep discount) - Paintball facilities in Bridgewater, Bourne, and Agawam, MA
- Blue Man Group at the Charles Playhouse
Boston Duck Tours from Museum of Science
Book of Mormon at Colonial Theatre
Boston's Unscripted Musical Project - Catalyst Comedy at Button Factory
The Donkey Show at Oberon, Cambridge
Tall Ship Adirondack III - Day sail around Boston Harbor
All Access Improv at ImprovBoston in Cambridge
Charles River & Locks Cruise

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://files.idealhomegarden.com/files/commons/labordayactivities1320x200.jpg

http://www.history.com/topics/holidays/labor-day

http://www.dol.gov/laborday/history.htm

http://www.boston-discovery-guide.com/boston-labor-day.html

Head Back to School With a Smile

August 27th, 2015

Elementary school class outsideAs the new school year approaches, the lazy summer mornings that were a part of the normal routine quickly turns into a thing of the past! For families, back-to-school time involves a ton of shopping to prepare children for the work ahead. From purchasing shoes and outfits that match the latest trends, to school supplies, to sports equipment for the new school year.

Unfortunately, not all families have the finances to supply their children with essential items for school.

Cradles to Crayons is an organization that helps children who are less fortunate receive the supplies they need. This wonderful charity is dedicated to improving the lives of children, and our office is glad to be a permanent drop off location for the organization.

 

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Cradles to Crayons’ has initiated the Families Helping Families Challenge, which aims to help families in need by providing school supplies, in addition to clothing, shoes, toys, books, and more. Be a part of the Families Helping Families Challenge by making an online donation here! Your donation will help many children in need who live right here in Massachusetts.

Along with gathering together backpacks, notebooks, pencils, calculators, clothes and shoes, it is important to make sure that your child has all of the tools necessary to maintain a healthy smile. Heading back to school is a great time to reiterate the importance of good oral health and to incorporate positive oral habits into their daily routine.

To ensure that your child's teeth are healthy and school-ready, make sure that they have had their regular dental examination. According to the American Dental Association, a dental visit is as important as getting immunizations to prepare for school. Untreated tooth decay can cause dental pain or even disease, which ultimately results in a lot of hours of missed school. If your child plays a contact sport, make sure that they have a properly fitted mouthguard to use when participating.

As you add school supplies to your cart, head to the dental hygiene isle and pick up new toothbrushes (the recommended time to change toothbrushes is approximately 3 months), floss, and mouthwash. If you pack your child's school lunch, be careful when choosing which items to buy. Pick tooth-friendly snacks, including grains, milk, cheese, vegetables, yogurt, or fruit. Avoid purchasing sugary foods and sodas.

If your child is heading off to college, make sure that they didn't forget to pack floss. Floss is necessary to remove plaque that is left behind in hard-to-reach places that the toothbrush can't remove.  Flossing daily helps prevent gum disease, tooth decay, and other oral health problems that will require treatment, and not to mention, time away from school.

Send your child...(and other children) off to school smiling and prepared for the knowledge that awaits them!

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.cradlestocrayons.org/boston/2015FamiliesHelpingFamilies

http://www.colgate.com/en/us/oc/oral-health/basics/dental-visits/article/ada-08-consumer-news-back-to-school

https://blogmilitaryfamily.files.wordpress.com/2013/04/kids-at-school.jpg

Back-to-School Dental Habits

August 20th, 2015

school

As hard as it is to believe that summer is almost over, it is the unfortunate truth. That means that school is back in session! As you prepare your child for their first day of school, it's that time again to start thinking of packed lunch ideas. It's important to ensure that their lunches are healthy and tooth-friendly. Dental health should play a major role when planning your child's diet. Although individuals of all ages are at risk of developing cavities, tooth decay is found to be most prevalent in school children. In fact, tooth decay is the number one chronic childhood illness.

Here are a few helpful tips for parents to promote healthy teeth at home and away from home:

Avoid Stocking Your Fridge at Home With Unhealthy Foods

A healthy diet is not only good for your child's growth and development, but it's also important for their dental health. Learning healthy habits starts at home. One of the simplest ways that you can ensure that your child is making tooth-conscious decisions at school is to provide them with balanced meals at home, including vegetables, fruits, whole grains, vitamins, dairy products, and protein.

Fruits and Dairy Products

Snacking typically involves unhealthy foods, such as chips and candy. However, there are plenty of tasty foods that are healthy for your child to munch on while at school. Items including sliced apples, bananas, carrots, celery, and other fruits and vegetables will satisfy your child's taste buds, while also supplying a wealth of nutrients beneficial for their teeth. Not to mention, diary products including milk and cheese are great options to help their tooth enamel stay healthy and strong.

Say NO to Sticky and Sugary Foods/Beverages

Even though sweets can be tempting, it's no denying the fact that sugar is a culprit of cavities. Typically, foods that are sticky like gummy bears and other candies are full of sugar and easily become lodged between teeth, making them more susceptible to decay. Avoid packing sugary items and desserts, including cookies. Don't forget, juice, sodas, and sports drinks can be just as harmful to teeth, as they can be high in sugar and acidity. Also, be sure to inform your child of the dangers of vending machines! Vending machines often house many unhealthy snacks that promote cavities.

Practice and Promote Proper Dental Care

Children learn and take after their parents. It is important to make your child's teeth cleaning routines both fun and memorable. Instill healthy dental habits at home and teach them the steps to maintaining healthy pearly whites. They will use these habits throughout the rest of their lives!

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.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/07/150731182845.htm

http://www.rch.org.au/uploadedImages/Main/Content/ccch/teacher%20rounded.jpg

Is Your Mouthpiece Making You Sick?

April 12th, 2015

mouth-guards

 

Whether your little one is signing up for little league or soccer camp, the season for sports is coming up. April marks National Facial Protection Month, which is a great time to remind children and adults about the importance of being safe by wearing a mouth guard during recreational and school sports this spring.  There are quite a few items of equipment you’ll need to get, but never forget to protect those teeth! All contact sports require mouthguards, and for good reason. To read some more about why using a mouthpiece is so important, visit “Sports Mouthguards: Necessary Protection for Your Child.” After learning a bit about what type of mouthguard you’d be best off with, you need to ensure that you know the necessary upkeep. Washing your mouthguard is as essential as washing your hands and needs it about as often. The importance of this cleanliness cannot be stressed enough.

Recently, there have been several extreme cases of viral infection stemming from unsanitized mouthguards. The bacteria on your mouthguard is in direct contact to your bloodstream via your gums. This leaves you even further susceptible to extremely dangerous internal infections. According to Thomas Glass, DDS, PHD, "While mouthguards appear solid, they are very porous, like a sponge, and with use, microorganisms invade these porosities...There are warning signs that can alert athletes that he or she may be suffering from a contaminated mouthguard.  Those include difficulty breathing, wheezing, diarrhea and nausea to the point of vomiting.”

Screen Shot 2015-04-12 at 4.34.26 PM

You can protect yourself and your child very easily with these maintenance tips:

  • Never share a mouthguard. Think of it as similar to sharing a toothbrush! Sharing oral appliances with others can expose you to germs and gum diseases, which often shows halitosis.
  • Make sure to brush your teeth and mouthguard before and after wearing it. Practicing good oral health habits will save your teeth in the long run!
  • If using a disposable mouthguards, ensure that you throw them out after the recommended amount of time.
  • Bring a backup mouthguard to games so that you have one in case your primary mouthguard gets dirty.
  • Store your mouthguard in a clean plastic case during half times to minimize handling.


If an athlete ever experiences a mouth injury, even as small as a scrape, the mouth should be sanitized with the necessary antiseptics and mouthwash.
The mouthguard should, then, be replaced immediately. As important as it is to wear your proper gear, make sure your gear isn't able to hurt you, too.

Wellesley Dental Group has worked with a number of schools around the Metro-west region, providing custom made mouthguards to our young athletes. If your children are involved in any sports this season, it might be a good idea to get custom mouthguards for them, to keep them safe from oral and facial injuries!

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.knowyourteeth.com/newsroom/?news=article&pid=89&iid=816&aid=4128

http://www.momsteam.com/health-safety/mouth-guards-prevent-dental-injuries-but-need-to-be-replaced-frequently

http://www.defensesport.com/reports/Sports-Dentistry-Article.pdf

http://www.massdental.org/content.aspx?id=2550

http://www.pearldentalclinic.co.uk/files/images/services/header_img/mouth-guards.jpg

February Vacation Week is Back in Action!

February 18th, 2015

Is your child eager to get out of the house this break? No need to worry, February vacation week is finally here! It began on February 16th and will continue until the 20th.  Which means, kids and adults alike can enjoy fun activities happening all week.

Explore Boston's myriads of museums and theatres! Boston's museums are hosting special activities this week.  The Boston Museum of Fine Arts (MFA) has free drop-in activities, including arts and crafts, gallery tours, performances, and other family fun.  Kids also get free admission.

Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum's 

Feb. 19-20 http://www.gardnermuseum.org, Boston, 617-566-1401

Are your kids enchanted by the music, literature, and arts of Asia? Then they will love the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum's "Journeys East" themed week, which encompasses it all!  They can also craft their own accordion books, rock gardens, and Nelson Mandela-inspired buttons.  And to top it off, two musicians from the New England Conservatory of music, Jonas Kublickas and DoYeon Kim, will deliver a duet while playing the guitar and the gayageum.

Museum of Science

February 15 – 28, Member Price 5$, http://www.mos.org, Boston, 617-723-2500

The fun and the learning both continue at the Museum of Science.  A new IMAX film, Humpback Whales, will be playing in the Mugar Omni Theatre on a five-story-tall dome IMAX screen!  In this film, you’ll watch whales frolicking in Alaska, Hawaii, and the Kingdom of Tonga. It is also National Engineers Week (February 15 – 28), where an array of additional hands-on engineering-themed programs will be going on throughout the museum.

MIT Museum

Feb. 16-21Workshops $5, mit.edu/museums, Cambridge, 617-253-5927

Engineering-oriented children will enjoy the MIT Museum. During “Feb Fest: Light, Cameras, Science!” MIT will be hosting tons of engineering-themed crafts and activities.

Boston Children Museum 

Feb. 15-22, Admission $14 ,http://www.bostonchildrensmuseum.org, Boston, 617-426-6500

The Boston Children Museum is hosting many activities this week, including boxy crafts based on the children's book "Not a Box."

Boston Children's Theatre

Feb. 18-22, http://bostonchildrenstheatre.org, Boston, 617-424-6634

Boston Children's Theatre is another fun destination your child can enjoy.  The cast will be performing Pinkalicious, a play about a little girl who enjoys so many pink cupcakes that she turns pink!

Brattle Theatre 

Feb. 14-21, 8$ Tickets, http://www.brattlefilm.org, Cambridge, 617-876-6838

Last but not least, the Brattle Theatre will be celebrating its twentieth annual Bugs Bunny film festival.  Now showing the All Bugs Revue, Daffy Duck and Friends, and the Looney Toons Revue.

 

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. Kim or Dr.Pradhan. Dr. 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.

Resources:

http://www.bostonmagazine.com/arts-entertainment/blog/2015/02/10/presidents-day-school-vacation-week-events-boston-2015/ 

http://www.gardnermuseum.org/calendar/event_series/school_vacation_week_activities

http://www.mfa.org/programs/special-event/cogan-family-foundation-vacation-week-adventures

http://www.mos.org/imax

http://web.mit.edu/museum/programs/feb-fest.html

http://www.yahvol.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/Kids-Activities-1.jpg

Together We Did it Again!

November 16th, 2014

[gallery ids="8126,8125,8127,8128,8129,8130,8131,8132,8133,8134,8135,8136,8138,8139,8140,8141,8142,8143,8144,8145,8146,8147,8148,8149,8150,8151,8152,8153,8154,8155,8156,8157,8158,8159,8161,8162,8163,8164,8165,8166,8167,8168,8169,8170"]

 

We did it again! This year’s Candy Drive was a great success, and we are proud to say we have collected even more candy than last year: over 7600 pounds! The candy will be sent as care packages with carepacks.org to the troops overseas as a sweet reminder of home.

Here are some highlights from the Candy Drive!

We were joined by so many wonderful people and organizations! We had the National Guards come out. We were also joined by some Veterans, and U.S. Marines who served as an amazing reminder for everything our troops do for us. We also had the Wellesley Police Department, along with Chief DeLorie and the Wellesley Fire Department—everyone who keeps us safe! All the local public schools were represented, along with many other schools and organizations from the surrounding MetroWest community. Many children and school principals came personally as well. Even local businesses and organizations came to drop off candy and show their support!

[caption id="attachment_8149" align="alignleft" width="200"] Evan singing the National Anthem.[/caption]

 

 

 

 

 

The spirit of patriotism was running high. Evan sang the National Anthem, and we had a moment of silence for those overseas.

 

 

 

 

[caption id="attachment_8208" align="alignright" width="300"] Winners from High Rock School Needham[/caption]

 

 

 

 

The Wellesley Public Schools and surrounding MetroWest schools were each awarded 3 prizes to hand off to the raffle winners.

 

 

[caption id="attachment_8145" align="alignleft" width="300"] National Guards, U.S. Marines, and Local Police and Fire[/caption]

 

 

It is heart warming to see the whole MetroWest community come together in the spirit of giving. The Wellesley Fire Department and Wellesley Police Department, along with the National guards supporting the town-wide initiative to support the troops. All Wellesley Public Schools participated with many private and neighboring town schools.

 

 

 

[caption id="attachment_8209" align="alignright" width="300"] Lovely handwritten notes![/caption]

 

 

 

We received so many handwritten notes. We imagine that these kind words of love and support will be even sweeter than the candy!

 

 

 

 

[caption id="attachment_8129" align="alignleft" width="300"] The Caring Team at Wellesley Dental Group[/caption]

 

It has been so touching to see the message of health and giving being spread across our community. We really could not have done it without everyone’s help, and we want to thank everyone who participated! And lastly, a big thank you to the Wellesley Dental Group team that put in the hard work to make our Candy Drive such a success!

 

 

 

Making Big News and A Bigger Impact!

 

[caption id="attachment_8150" align="alignleft" width="300"] Family of Tufts Jumbos making a difference.[/caption]

Hometown Weekly

Wellesley Weston Magazine

Patch 

 

 

 

 

 

Check out out past Candy Drive Blogs!

The Pyramid of Candy

Candy Drive: Behind the Scenes!

The Candy Collection has Begun!

Candy Drive Details 2014

7th Annual Candy Drive: Send the Sweet Message of Support to our Troops!

 Together We Can Do So Much!

Our Candy Brigade!

 A Note Sweeter Than Candy!

Candy Pouring In!

Candy Drive Flyer

Candy Drive Kick-Off

 

Thank you Nuriman Faris for taking beautiful pictures and to Haynes Management for being such great neighbors!

 

A Special Thank You to the following Participants:

 

The Candy Collection Has Begun!

November 5th, 2014

candy drive pic 2014

 

 

The Event: 7th Annual Community Candy Drive, celebrating Veteran's Day with Candy and Cards for the US Troops

Date: Nov 14th 2014

Time: 10:00 am -11:00 am

 

Background:

 

The Community Candy Drive initiative started off small, seven years back, out of a desire to incentivize children to eat less candy, without decreasing any of the fun that Halloween brings, and instilling in them the spirit of sharing and giving.

 

It started as a community wide buy-back program, where kids could bring us their treats and we would pay them for it. This became immensely popular, and we decided to go a step further by sharing these treats with our troops abroad. Candy is not a big deal for most of us, but for those that are serving our country, it’s a piece of home, and a reflection of our gratitude for their sacrifices.

 

We send care packs to our soldiers via a Weymouth-based non-profit, Care Packs.

The response from our community has been phenomenal.

Last year, over twenty different organizations and Wellesley schools participated in our Annual Community Candy Drive. We were able to collect more than 7300 lbs. of candy! Students included heart-warming notes of gratitude and appreciation for the American Troops. This year, we have already been contacted by institutions across the metro-west region, including schools from Newton and Natick.

A graduate student and Fulbright scholar from Babson College, Meenah Tariq, is helping us with the event.

In order to make the event more fun for the kids that participate and reward their spirit of giving and community service, the 7th Annual Community Candy Drive incorporates an element of student appreciation, with a raffle for all participants, with the prizes being handed out at our grand finale on the 14th of November.

 

Guests and Speakers:

Ellen Gibbs, Selectman at Town of Wellesley

Dr. David Lussier , Wellesley School Superintendent

Wellesley High School Band - performance

Elementary School students - National Anthem

 

Representatives from: 

  • United States Marine Corps Representative
  • Wellesley's American Legion Post 72
  • Celebrations Committee
  • Wellesley Veterans officer
  • Wellesley Police Dept
  • Wellesley Fire Department
  • National Guard (probable)

 

Participants 2014 (confirmed thus far): 

 

At the Wellesley Dental Group we believe that the amazing turn-out and outpouring of donations and notes that we witness each year are a reflection of the strength of this community. It renews our faith in humanity to see young children sharing the treats they love so much, with our servicemen. We hope to continue and grow this tradition, making it bigger and better each year.

 

Media - Candy Drive 2014:

 

Hometown Weekly: http://hometownweekly.net/wellesley-dentists-collecting-candy-for-troops-overseas-p12953-197.htm

Wellesley Weston Blog: http://www.wwmblog.com/news/welldental-candydrive

Patch.com: http://patch.com/massachusetts/wellesley/7th-annual-candy-drive-send-sweet-message-support-our-troops-0

 

Media - candy Drive 2013:

http://www.boston.com/yourtown/news/wellesley/2013/10/wellesley_dental_group_collecting_thousands_of_pounds_of_can.html

http://wellesleydentalgroup.com/blog/making-big-news-and-a-bigger-impact-thanks-to-your-support/

 

Photographs from past Candy Drive Events:

http://wellesleydentalgroup.com/blog/candy-drive-details/

http://wellesleydentalgroup.com/blog/our-candy-drive-brigade/

http://wellesleydentalgroup.com/blog/candy-drive-2011-video-you-may-star-in-our-next-one/

 

Candy Drive Details!

October 31st, 2014

Send a sweet message of support to our brave soldiers overseas at our 7th Annual Candy Drive!

Drop off your candy donations and notes November 3rd-14th.

 

FOR DETAILS

Call (781)237-9071

Email smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com

 

Please RSVP if interested in participating at our press event on November 14th at 10 A.M.

All participating schools will be winning 3 raffles prizes presented the day of the event. We have the Superintendent of Wellesley Schools, Dr. David Lussier, joining us along with U.S. Marines, the National Guard, Veterans, local police and fire department, and many other principals and students attending the event. We will be sending the care packages of candy, notes, and oral hygiene supplies through CarePacks. Local press will be capturing this special event. Celebrate everyone’s generous donations of candy and notes, enjoy refreshments, and get a picture with this year’s surprise candy display. All are welcome!

Check out last year's turnout here!
 
 
 

Books Kids Can Sink Their Teeth Into!

October 9th, 2014

There are several ways to teach and get your child excited about proper dental care. Yet, sometimes the lesson can be learned from simply reading a story. Children tend to enjoy stories that highlight characters and creative illustrations that they can relate to, which is also the same when it comes to books about dental health!

Losing teeth is a rite of passage for children. Many kids are generally excited when they reach this milestone, while some are nervous and concerned about feeling pain with the loss of a tooth. Your child’s first lost tooth can stir up a lot of questions from your little one. Questions that range from “Why did my tooth fall out?” to “Will I talk or look funny when my tooth comes out?” They may even ask, “What replaces the tooth?” or “Is the tooth-fairy real?”

A good way to answer some of these questions and reassure your child that losing primary teeth is a natural part of growing up is to introduce them to books about teeth! A great number of books contain well-known characters and fun pictures that can get them enthused about taking care of their teeth.

It is important to remind your child that even though primary teeth are expected to fall out, they still must be properly cared for in order to have healthy permanent teeth. If primary teeth are lost prematurely as a result of tooth decay, permanent teeth may not come into their sockets properly, leading to other oral health problems. Unfortunately, tooth decay is currently the number one disease that affects children. It's estimated that 40% of children have experienced tooth decay before starting kindergarten. A step toward defeating cavities is to teach good oral habits.

Help your kids appreciate the importance of dental health with these good reads:

  • Brush Your Teeth Please by Leslie McGuire
  • The Tooth Book by Dr. Seuss
  • Franklin and the Tooth Fairy by Paulette Bourgeois
  • Clifford’s Loose Tooth by John Kurtz
  • Little Bill: A Visit to the Dentist by Bill Cosby
  • The Berenstain Bears Visit the Dentist by Stan Berenstain
  • Show Me Your Smile!: A Visit to the Dentist (Dora the Explorer) by Christine Ricci
  • Caraboose: The Tooth Fairy Moose by Lynn Swanson
  • Little Rabbit’s Loose Tooth by Lucy Bate
  • Truman’s Loose Tooth by Kristine Warm
  • The Berenstain Bears Visit the Dentist by Stan Berenstain and Jan Berenstain
  • Going to the Dentist by Anne Civardi
  • ABC Dentist: Healthy Teeth from A to Z by Harriet Ziefert
  • Behold, No Cavities!: A Visit to the Dentist (Sponge Bob Square Pants) by Sarah Willson

These books not only include stories about losing teeth, but also about trips to the dentist, good oral hygiene habits, and the famous tooth-fairy tale. Although some books can be targeted for a specific age group, there are plenty of stories for just about any child.

In addition to books, online games that incorporate dental health can also be great resources for teaching. The American Dental Association offers an animated online book, Visit the Dentist with MartyHealthyTeeth.org also offers fun experiments and activities for elementary age kids.

Developing good oral health habits at an early age is vital for a lifetime of healthy teeth. Not only will children have practice reading, but also the importance of dental health can be instilled in them simultaneously!

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. Kim. Dr. 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.readingrockets.org/articles/books/c928

http://www.aapd.org/media/Policies_Guidelines/G_infantOralHealthCare.pdf

http://www.sheknows.com/parenting/articles/950463/teaching-kids-about-dental-health

http://www.castledental.com/our-blog/books-teach-kids-about-teeth-and-dentists

http://www.cityofsafford.us/images/pages/N440/kidsreading2.jpg

Is “An Apple a Day” Good for your Teeth?

September 18th, 2014

5083649844_afe8e9e1ac_zWill an apple a day only keep the doctor away? What about the dentist? Apples are not only recognized for their health benefits, but they also have an impact on teeth!

With school starting up again, the easiest way to lead children away from candies and other sugary foods is to offer healthy snack alternatives. Eating fresh fruit is a good alternative to drinking fruit juices, which have a high level of acidity and sugar. Apples make great healthy snacks that are easy to throw into your child’s lunchbox. Apples contain a wealth of vitamins and nutrients, which are important for maintaining strong teeth.Apples and other crunchy foods, including vegetables, can act as nature’s toothbrush by helping to remove stains and brighten teeth. The tough texture of apples helps stimulate the gums, clean teeth, and fight bacteria. Yet, it is important to note that they certainly do not replace brushing and flossing! Chewing on an apple also increases the production of saliva. The more saliva, the better! Saliva helps wash away food particles and keep plaque from forming. In addition, apples are packed with fiber and a high water content, which helps to neutralize acids that destroy tooth enamel.

On the other hand, it is important to remember that apples do contain sugar and acid, which can erode teeth. To counteract this effect, brushing and rinsing your mouth afterward is essential in preventing erosion and other oral problems.

Indeed, a healthy diet does have an effect on dental health. Fruits containing Vitamin C can help promote a healthy smile. Individuals that lack vitamin C are at an increased risk of experiencing bleeding gums. Carrots, celery, and dark leafy vegetables also make good snacks because they are loaded with vitamin A, vitamin C, beta carotene, phosphorus, calcium and magnesium.

An apple a day can be great, but good oral habits must also be implemented. A balanced diet that includes grains, fruits, vegetables, meat, fish, and dairy is essential in maintaining healthy teeth. Although a healthy diet can “keep the dentist away” with unnecessary oral health problems, it is still necessary to visit the dentist for regular checkups and cleanings!

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. Kim.

References:

http://www.colgate.com/app/CP/US/EN/OC/Information/Video-Library/Apples-And-Oral-Health.cvsp

https://www.nutritionmasterfoods.com/WHY-EAT-THESE-INGREDIENTS

https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4147/5083649844_afe8e9e1ac_z.jpg

5 Ways to Get an A in Oral Health

August 27th, 2014

happy_male_elementary_school_student_holding_a_tro_by_macinivnw-d68c9ty

With the school season around the corner oral health has to be at the top of your list! During the summer it’s easy to become more lenient with kids about what they eat, so dentists recommend that now is a good time to check in with the dentist and do a cleaning. Research shows that 60% of children fail to visit the dentist once a year. Now is a good time to check for cavities, for untreated tooth decay - all of this can keep a child from eating, speaking, sleeping, and even learning to their fullest potential. Parents should also be mindful of the snacks and lunches they pack. Some schools offering enticing sugary snacks for kids, but it is a good idea to pack healthy foods, keeping a child’s sugar intake at bay.

We challenge you do beat these statistics and start the school year off with healthy teeth! Request an appointment with Dr. Kim, our excellent pediatric dentist, or call 781-237-9071 with questions.

1891176_10151970757410913_476601832_n1. Consistent brushing. As always it is important to instill the habit of brushing twice a day. Getting back to school, children have to be reminded of the morning and evening routine. It is helpful to set up a time for brushing after breakfast and before going to bed. Dentists also recommend that brushing after every meal can be beneficial.  There are many fun toothbrushes that have been coming out, and along with buying new folders and notebooks, parents can look into buying themed travel toothbrush and toothpaste that children can bring to school in their lunchbox. Just make sure that the toothpaste contains fluoride and that the travel toothbrush has soft bristles!

2. Flossing before brushing. To get an A vs. a B in oral care, you have to make sure to remember flossing.  For small children, convenient pre-strung floss picks can make it easier to reach between teeth in little mouths. Put a floss pick on your child’s plate so they remember that right after they eat, they need to floss. By making these actions routine, your child will develop good habits they can lean on for the rest of their life.

3. Fluoride rinses. Once you are sure your child can swish mouthwash without swallowing it, add a rinse to their routine. Not only is it fun and leaves the cleanest feeling, but it also helps remineralise teeth and protect them from the effects sweets and soda have on gentle enamel. This step will put the parent's mind at ease!

4. Help make dentist their friend. Dentist visits are necessary and although many young students are afraid of them, parents can help put their mind at ease. Research shows, that if the parents show anxiety about the dental check-ups, it's far more likely that the children will, as well. Dentist are working to help you have the best quality of life, besides dentistry has come a long way in terms of comfort and amenities. A kid's visit often includes playing in the waiting area, watching cartoons for distraction, drawing and getting fun prizes and stickers. Be sure to prepare your child for their dental visits by explaining how the staff will take a picture of their teeth during X-rays, clean their teeth and examine the teeth. Eliminate the unknowns and your child will walk into the dentist office with more confidence and a better understanding.

At our office in Wellesley, two friends will greet your children upon their visit - dinosaurs Christoper and Kiki. They will help your kids practice their brushing skills!

5. See the dentist every 6 months.  It is recommended that school-age children visit the dentist twice a year. It is important to make sure all transitions that a child’s teeth goes through are happening in a timely manner, whether is it is losing baby teeth or expecting permanent ones to come in. Staying on a regular six month schedule will keep your visits timely and give you an early alert if a child needs extra help with their brushing and flossing or has issues that need to be treated.

Now that everyone is getting back to school, let’s make it important to keep up with good oral health this school year! Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group; they will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com

Request a check-up with Dr. Kim, our pediatric dentist, or call 781-237-9071.

599677_10150857536180913_2009636587_n 10482840_10152164049505913_6318726285628556953_n10418315_10152164049515913_3450995650367578239_n

 

References:

http://fatcatwebproductions.com/ThePaper_2014/md-thenews/content/complete-your-healthy-back-school-routine-dental-care

http://islandgazette.net/news-server5/index.php/local-business-news/business-news/health-and-wellness/20333-back-to-school-time-to-get-back-to-dental-routine-9-11-2013

http://www.colgate.com/app/CP/US/EN/OC/Information/Articles/ADA/2010/article/ADA-08-Consumer-News-Back-to-School.cvsp

http://www.astdd.org/docs/schoolbased-ohp-ma-oh-coalition-whitepaper-nov-2011.pdf

http://thegazette.com/2012/10/31/halloween-a-dentists-dilemma/

 Image credit: http://th05.deviantart.net/fs70/PRE/i/2013/161/a/e/happy_male_elementary_school_student_holding_a_tro_by_macinivnw-d68c9ty.jpg

Packed Lunches for Kids Promote Healthy Teeth

August 25th, 2014

lunch boxDon’t let dental related problems be the reason for your child’s absence from school! Eating unhealthy snacks and junk foods can lead to an extra trip to the dentist for cavity treatments. Next week when school is back in session, make sure your kids get healthy snacks for lunch.

School’s can potentially be risky environments for dental health, especially with the availability of vending machines that contain unhealthy snacks and sodas. In order to enhance your child’s health and smile, it is important to consider and implement nutritious foods for lunch. Poor nutrition can lead to tooth decay, gum disease, and bad breath. If you pack their lunches, make sure to include foods that contain nutrients essential to their oral health, such as carbohydrates, protein, calcium, and vitamins A and C.

Packing healthy foods for lunch will foster good nutritional habits within kids. The following tips  for packing healthy lunches can help meet your child’s dental and nutritional needs:

Healthy Fruits and Vegetables:

Who doesn't enjoy finger foods? Cutting slices of cucumber or carrots into bite-size pieces are easy and healthy to snack on. Try avoiding sugary dressings, potatoes, and fries.

Fruits including oranges, pears, and pineapple can be sliced into sections for a sweet and filling snack. Also, the potassium in bananas, and fiber and vitamins in apples are essential for maintaining good oral health. Try avoiding grapes due to their high sugar content.

Protein:

Eating proteins will help keeps muscles healthy and strong. Peanut butter, lean turkey, and nuts all have a good source of protein and are easy to pack for school.

Carbohydrates:

Carbohydrates provide energy for your children to focus and learn throughout the school day. Whole wheat bread, whole grain tortillas, pita bread, or bagels are all tasty carbs that your child can enjoy. Cheese is a good source of calcium and can also protect teeth from decaying. Try adding low-fat string cheese to whole grain crackers.

Drinks:

What your kids drink is equally important as what they eat. Water, especially fluoridated water, helps strengthen tooth enamel and wash down leftover pieces of food. Unsweetened tea also contains fluoride. Milk is a healthy option because it provides vitamin D and calcium. Avoid sports drinks, which contain a large amount of sugar, processed milk, as well as most juices.

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. Kim or Dr.Pradhan. Dr. 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.therabreath.com/articles/news/oral-care-industry-news/healthiest-packed-lunches-for-kids-32375.asp
http://www.colgate.com/app/CP/US/EN/OC/Information/Articles/ColgateNewandNow/Community/2013/April/article/SW-281474979078603.cvsp
http://www.healthykids.nsw.gov.au/downloads/header/header_Lunchbox_d1ff_header.jpg

More Reasons to Smile While on Vacation

March 27th, 2014

family vacationVacations are a time for relaxing, having fun, and making memories with family and friends.  Whether you are camping in the wilderness or sipping coconut water in the Caribbean, everyone can benefit from good oral health tips on the go.  With summer vacations looming over the horizon, here are some great tips to keep you and your loved ones smiling the entire time!

 1. Plan ahead

If you or your family members haven’t had their bi-yearly dental check ups yet, now may be a good time to do so.  By seeing a dentist before leaving for vacation, you can guarantee that there will be no sudden dental problems that require medical attention while abroad.  For instance, having a cavity spotted and filled early might prevent annoying toothache issues that are difficult to treat away from home.

Furthermore, make sure you have all your medical and dental insurance information handy and kept in a safe place in case of an emergency.

2.  Keep things organized

Keeping all your oral health tools in one place will save time and effort.  Carrying a toothbrush, toothpaste, and floss in your carry-on bag will be helpful during long flights.  Another option would be to purchase smaller versions of your usual arsenal of products.  There are many travel-sized versions of all major toothpaste and mouthwash brands at most convenience stores.  Make sure to brush your teeth after every meal (just like you would at home) even while on a plane!

3.  Cover your toothbrushes

Throwing an uncovered toothbrush into your carry-on bag or placing it on countertops of hotel bathrooms gives unwelcome bacteria the opportunity to invade its bristles.  In order to prevent this, it is important to cover toothbrushes with a clean, plastic cover.  It’s crucial to let all toothbrushes air-dry before placing the cover on it, because covering a moist toothbrush will actually encourage bacteria growth.

4.   Maintain healthy eating habits

Vacation time is certainly a time to indulge.  However, keep some healthy snacks like fruit or veggies in hand for in between meals.  You can satisfy your appetite by chewing on nutritious snacks throughout the day and perhaps turn down a tempting sugary drink later on.

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 781-237-9071or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment and consultation.

Sources:

http://www.drpeterhazim.com/dental-tips-while-on-vacation/
http://lauriesteindds.com/blog/?p=378
http://pediatricdentalworld.com/blog/5-pointers-for-healthy-vacation-smiles/
Image credit: http://cdn.sheknows.com/articles/2010/12/family-vacation.jpg

What Is Oil-pulling?

March 23rd, 2014

olive oilThe latest dentistry-related craze to hit social media has been an article on the miraculous benefits of "oil-pulling" on oral health.  Some articles claim that this new fad can even eliminate acne and eczema, cures hang-overs, aids in sleep problems, and helps alleviate general pain.  Could oil-pulling be a new cure-all health practice or is it just another pseudoscience fad?

Oil-pulling is an ancient folk practice originating from India.  Essentially, this practice entails swishing a tablespoon of any cold pressed, vegetable-based oil like coconut oil around in your mouth for 20 minutes every morning.

If you haven't seen any of these articles yet, here are a few of the dentistry-related claims they make:

  • Removes bacteria and toxins in your mouth and lymph system
  • Re-mineralizes teeth
  • Strengthens gums
  • Whitens teeth naturally
  • Reduces bad breath

Groups of bloggers and scientific researchers have both been questioning the validity of all these claims.  Although there is some scientific literature supporting some of the claimed benefits of oil-pulling, the research does not lend any clear substantial support.  In fact, some report that a placebo effect is actually taking place.

An online community of doctors called Science Based Medicine state that "oil pulling for general health or any other indication is pure pseudoscience."  Other scientists and medical practitioners are choosing to take a more middle-ground stance on this practice.  Dr. Sanda Moldovan, a periodontist, agrees that maintaining proper oral health is essential to be healthy overall and that oil-pulling is just another (and not necessarily crucial) method of maintaining healthy teeth.  Studies have shown that coconut oil does indeed remove harmful bacteria from your mouth.  However, research has also shown that oil-pulling is not much better than regular mouthwash in removing harmful bacteria in your mouth.

The verdict?  It would best be advised that people should remain cautious to believe and try everything they read online through social media.  Although oil-pulling might have some health benefits, it seems that there is not enough scientific support to back up all of its claims.

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 781-237-9071or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment and consultation.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist Dr. Kim or Dr.PradhanDr. 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.

Sources:

http://www.foodmatters.tv/articles-1/oil-pulling-the-habit-that-can-transform-your-health

http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-7857/why-you-should-start-oil-pulling-today.html

http://news.discovery.com/human/psychology/can-oil-pulling-improve-your-health-140311.htm

http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/oil-pulling-your-leg/

http://jezebel.com/the-oil-pulling-health-craze-works-just-not-in-the-w-1538252677

Image credit: http://media.npr.org/assets/img/2011/01/19/olive-oil_sq-e4b656991b973d6de22fb74a05922bb0650e9e5a-s6-c30.jpg

"Does My Breath Smell?"

March 22nd, 2014

Cure Bad BreathHaving bad breath can be a symptom of a host of oral health problems like severe tooth decay, infections in the mouth, and gum disease.  In other cases, bad breath can just be the result of a garlic-heavy lunch.  Regardless, having odor-free breath is essential in our day-to-day social interactions with others.  Have you ever wondered if your breath smelled and had no way to check?  Although many people employ the strategy of breathing into their cupped hands to check, this method is actually ineffective.  Our bodies are all individually acclimated to our own scents, and thus it is difficult to notice any changes in the smell of our breath.

Luckily, there are other ways you can quickly check the smell of your own breath.

  • Cotton test: Take a cotton swab and run it across the top of your tongue near the back and smell it.  If it smells bad or is yellow in color, this suggests elevated sulfide production.
  • Wrist test: Lick your wrist and wait about 10 seconds before smelling it.
  • Dental floss/toothpick test: Smell floss or toothpick after you are done using it and look for any bad odors.
  • Mirror test: If the very back of your tongue is whitish in color, this may suggest foul odor.
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 781-237-9071or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment and consultation.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist Dr. Kim or Dr.PradhanDr. 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.

Sources:

http://www.therabreath.com/breath-test.html
http://www.breathmd.com/how-to-smell-your-own-breath.php
http://www.webmd.com/oral-health/guide/bad-breath
Image credit: http://www.larsondentistry.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/Cure-Bad-Breath.jpg

A Smarter Brushing Experience

March 15th, 2014

electric toothbrush

There is no doubt that smart phones have become a permanent staple in our day to day lives.  From editing pictures to counting calories, it seems like smart phones can do it all!  Now, with the production of Oral B's smart toothbrush, your smart phone can even help you brush your teeth better.

This electronic smart toothbrush (to be released worldwide in June, 2014) is linked via Bluetooth 4.0 to an app that can be downloaded for both Android and iOS devices.  The best features of this toothbrush include a video simulation that shows you exactly where to brush, which areas are neglected, and how hard to brush.  Additionally, it provides tips on how to improve your brushing habits by charting your progress.  Users found that using the electronic smart toothbrush significantly extended brushing times.

We highly recommend using electric toothbrushes if you look more thorough brushing results, they can make a huge difference in your oral hygiene. Some people think that using such a toothbrush, you are done in half the time. This is not really the case.  Due to the smaller brushing surface, you have to make sure you cover all the chewing surfaces.

There is a different technique to using an electric brush. Rather than moving the brush around the mouth in a circular motion, let the brush do the work. Start at one corner of the mouth eg. the cheek surface of the back teeth, and slowly move the brush along the teeth towards the lips. Then make a second pass from the same start point but slightly lower down so that the junction of the gums and teeth is thoroughly cleaned. Repeat this for the inside of the teeth and then each of the other corners of the mouth. Don't forget to brush the chewing surfaces as well.

If you can't wait until June for the pioneering smart toothbrush, check out some of these popular electronic toothbrushes, guaranteed to take your brushing to the next level:

1.  Oral-B Professional Healthy Clean + Floss Action Electric Toothbrush with SmartGuide (Amazon: $110)

This electronic toothbrush is Oral-B's most technologically advanced series.  This toothbrush has a "Deep Clean" mode (as well as 4 other modes like "Whitening" and "Massage") that guarantees the removal of 99.7% of plaque even in the hard-to-reach places of the mouth.  A unique pressure sensor automatically pauses the vibrations of the toothbrush if you are pressing down too firmly on your gums and teeth.

 2.  Philips Sonicare Essence Rechargeable Electric Toothbrush (Amazon: $50)

The Philips Sonicare Essence is a cheaper alternative that provides excellent plaque removal and a 2-minute timer to ensure proper brushing time.  This toothbrush claims to clean 2x more plaque than a manual toothbrush.

 3.  Philips Sonicare DiamondClean (Amazon: $190)

The DiamondClean toothbrush claims to remove 5x more plaque than a manual toothbrush and also significantly whitens teeth within 1 week of use.  A unique feature of this toothbrush is its diamond-shaped brush bristles which enable greater surface area coverage.  The DiamondClean also has five modes including whitening and massage functions.

Electronic toothbrushes aren't necessary to maintain good oral health. Manual toothbrushes are just as effective when used correctly.  However, if you use an electric toothbrush with an average technique and time, it will give far superior oral hygiene benefits compared to a manual toothbrush with an average technique.
It is important to keep in mind that a combination of proper diet,  flossing, and brushing are all necessary components of keeping your smile looking healthy.

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 781-237-9071or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment and consultation.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist Dr. Kim or Dr.PradhanDr. 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.

Sources:

http://www.inquisitr.com/1159163/new-oral-b-electronic-toothbrush-connects-to-smartphone-app-to-help-clean-your-teeth/
http://time.com/11376/busted-this-toothbrush-tattles-on-you-to-your-dentist/
http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2014/feb/26/oral-b-smart-toothbrush-dentists-spy-on-your-brushing
http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/toothbrushes/buying-guide.htm
http://www.bhbdental.co.nz/FAQs/Gum+Disease/Electric+Toothbrushes.html
Image credit: http://www.goodhousekeeping.com/cm/goodhousekeeping/images/ER/philips-sonicare-diamondclean-electric-toothbrush-lgn.jpg

 

Great Dental Apps for Your Smart Phone

March 12th, 2014

Virtual Dentist shot

There is an app for everything imaginable nowadays.  Teenagers and adults alike are constantly on their phones.  Why not add ways to maintain good oral health while you're routinely scrolling through different apps on your phone anyway?  We've narrowed down some great dental apps for everyone that are guaranteed to keep you smiling. Brush DJ (Price: free) Did you know that you're supposed to brush your teeth for a full 2 minutes?  The Brush DJ app plays music from your smart phone device to ensure that your 2-minute brushing session is an enjoyable one.  In addition to the music player, Brush DJ allows its users to set reminders like brushing twice a day, flossing, when to replace your toothbrush, and when to see a dentist.  Brush DJ has been shown to be a favorite among kids!

iTunes App store: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/brush-dj/id475739913?mt=8

Google play: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=uk.co.appware.brushdj&hl=en

 

Dental Phobia (Price: $0.99) One of the most effective ways of lowering anxiety related to dental procedures, is to be knowledgable about what exactly is going on.  This app promotes the power of knowledge and provides a wealth of information regarding all dental procedures.  Also, Dental Phobia allows its users to contact qualified dentists with individual questions and concerns.

iTunes App store:  https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/dental-phobia/id447569018?mt=8

 

Teeth Whitener (Price: $0.99) Have you ever wondered what you would look like with brighter, whiter teeth?  This app allows its users to upload pictures of themselves and adjust the coloring of their teeth accordingly.  If you're wary about getting your teeth professionally whitened, this app would be a great way to see what your results may look like before you take the plunge.

iTunes App store: https://itunes.apple.com/ca/app/teeth-whitener-whiten-brighten/id504156800?mt=8

 

KidsDental (Price: $1.99) KidsDental incorporates superb animation in their learning tools.  This app was designed to teach children about important oral health issues and proper dental care.  It is even customizable by each individual user by allowing its users to input personal dental milestones like "first tooth loss" into an interactive calendar.  KidsDental covers a wide range of dental topics including: cavities, early tooth loss, and broken teeth.

iTunes App store: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/kidsdental/id472980862?mt=8  

 

My Little Dentist - Kids Game  (Price: Free) For kids that have an interest in dentistry as a career - this is an interactive game that lets you "treat" patients.  This game utilizes a simple tap and drag interface with kids-friendly content.

Google play store: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.gss.little.dentist

 

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 781-237-9071or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment and consultation.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist Dr. Kim or Dr.PradhanDr. 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.

 

Sources: http://www.123dentist.com/top-10-dental-apps-for-smartphones/ http://www.brushdj.com/#nogo

Image credit:  http://ww1.prweb.com/prfiles/2012/11/26/10171598/Virtual%20Dentist%20shot.png
http://a3.mzstatic.com/us/r30/Purple/v4/ff/60/e9/ff60e9ad-aea8-5577-b6ca-c0eb7b58f188/screen480x480.jpeg https://lh4.ggpht.com/Ibx2f10R78_zafl6I5fMjp9F020yoqhvm8nAi7RdEPyaxnfwi7SFUFmy5oHIbv2t6y_i=h310-rw

Make-up Tricks for a Whiter Smile!

March 9th, 2014

lipstickWhiter teeth can instantly brighten up a smile.  However, if you don't have time to get them professionally whitened, there are a few temporary makeup tricks to make them look whiter.  It's important to  keep in mind that no make-up trick will ever replace maintaining a healthy dental care regimen of brushing teeth, flossing, and have regular check-ups.

Applying a matte bronzer the hollows of your cheeks and all over your face gives your skin a sun-kissed glow.  The tanning effect of bronzer makes the whiteness of your teeth stand out.  The main areas you should focus on while applying bronzer are: under your cheekbones, sides of the nose, jawline, and under the chin.

Strategically choosing the right lip color is also very important.  A lip gloss or lipstick with cool undertones of blue or purple also give the illusion of whiter teeth because it counteracts the yellow-ness of teeth.  A berry-tinted lip gloss would be a great choice for this winter!  However, if purple-toned lip colors are out of your comfort zone, a classic red lip will also create an illusion of whiter teeth because it makes a sharp color contrast.  It is important to avoid any orange-based peach or caramel undertones in lip glosses because they enhance any yellow coloring of teeth.

Another useful trick to counterbalance any yellowing is to focus on your eye makeup and really making them pop.  Again, using cooler toned shades like purples and greens are your best bet.

In case you would like to get professional whitening done, we do have several options for you. You could try Sinsational in-office whitening that will brighten up your smile about four shades up in less than 30 minutes. You could also give take-home whitening kit a shot, with great results within two weeks. 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 781-237-9071or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment and consultation.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist Dr. Kim or Dr.PradhanDr. 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.

Sources:

http://www.cosmopolitan.com/hairstyles-beauty/skin-care-makeup/how-to-whiten-your-teeth#slide-1

http://www.besthealthmag.ca/look-great/makeup/makeup-tricks-to-make-your-teeth-look-whiter

http://blog.birchbox.com/post/24224204212/how-to-contour-your-face-like-a-celebrity

http://au.lifestyle.yahoo.com/womens-health/life-features/beauty/article/-/10641004/make-up-tips-to-make-your-teeth-appear-whiter/

Is Chewing Gum to Blame for Headaches in Kids?

March 9th, 2014

gum chewing headachesGum chewing is a common habit for both adults and adolescents.  Although chewing gum can provide dental benefits like whitening and aid in the prevention of tooth decay, research has shown that chewing gum may not be as beneficial as once thought.  Many would not think to relate gum chewing with prolonged headaches.  However, recent research has begun to elucidate the correlation between the two.

Dr. Nathan Watemberg of Tel Aviv University and Meir Medical Center looked at the relationship between frequent gum chewing and headaches specifically in adolescents.  He focused on a group of patients between the ages of 6 and 19 who both reported chronic migraines or headaches and chewed gum on a daily basis.  Once the group of adolescents quit gum chewing entirely, almost 90% of the group reported decreased frequency and intensity in headaches and more than half of the group reported that their headaches completely disappeared.

There are a few theories that seek to to explain why gum chewing might cause headaches.  For one, the physical act of prolonged chewing causes stress to an area of the head where the jaw is connected to the skull.  Alternatively, some researchers believe that the artificial sweetener used in some types of gum is the culprit.

Regardless of the reason, it seems that forgoing gum chewing may alleviate the debilitating effects of daily headaches in adolescents.

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 781-237-9071or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment and consultation.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist Dr. Kim or Dr.PradhanDr. 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.

Sources:

http://www.ada.org/5097.aspx?currentTab=2

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/12/131219130937.htm

Image credit: http://i.telegraph.co.uk/multimedia/archive/01775/gum_1775702c.jpg

Scared of the Dentist?

March 5th, 2014

Every now and then studies come about that put fear of death, public speaking and dentists at the very top of the list of the most terrifying things. Patients fearing a visit to the dentist continue to delay necessary treatment. A study shows that these emotions of fear can be transferred from parent to child.

Studies done in the past have pinpointed the relationship between fear levels of parents and their children, but there was never research done on the different roles that mothers and father play. America Lara Sacido, one of the researchers at the Rey Juan Carlos University of Madrid explain that there is a more relevant role that fathers play in this emotional transmission when compared to mothers.

This study, which was published in the International Journal of Pediatric Dentistry, analyzed 183 children between the ages of 7-12 and their respective parents. The authors verified that, similar to previous studies, when there is higher level of dentist fear or anxiety in one family member, there is also a higher level in the rest of the family. Research showed that fathers are key in transmitting dentist fear from mothers to their children. Researchers found that the children mainly paid attention to the emotional reactions of the fathers when determining the level of stress a visit dentist would cause.

The researchers state that it is important to involve both mothers and fathers in dentist fear prevention campaigns, and that fathers can help appease a child’s dental visit through displaying no signs of fear or anxiety. Parents should continue to ensure their children and keep them relaxed. They concluded that through the transmission of positive attitudes, parents can set the right attitude for their children and visits to the dentists may not be as big as a problem.

 

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! Please call before your child’s appointment, especially if you have anxiety. Coming into the office before your child’s appointment  is a great idea to ensure a happy appointment. Contact us today at 781-237-9071or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment and consultation.

We have a wonderful pediatric dental specialist, Dr. Pradhan, and hope that with your new insight on dental visits, future visits with your child will be enjoyable! Your little ones and teens will also be happy to visit our pediatric dentist Dr. Kim. Dr. 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:

América Lara-Sacido, Antonio Crego and Martín Romero-Maroto. Emotional contagion of dental fear to children: the fathers' mediating role in parental transfer of fear.International Journal of Paediatric Dentistry, 2012; 22:324-330

Science Daily

Don’t Let Cavities Keep You from Winning the Gold!

March 4th, 2014

sochi winter olympics In light of the recent Sochi XXII Olympic Winter Games, a report by researchers at the University College London revealed that professional athletes that competed in the 2012 Olympics in London had very poor levels of oral health. Their oral health problems were bad enough that they had a negative effect on sports performance. 

The team of researchers looked at oral health check-up results of over 300 athletes and also interviewed them.  Over half of the athletes, representing sports like track, boxing, and hockey, had tooth decay.  More than 75% had gingivitis and 15% were starting to show signs of periodontitis.  About half of the athletes reported that these oral health problems were bothersome.  Furthermore, around 20% of them reported that poor oral health was negatively impacting their training and athletic performance.   In fact, 9% of the athletes had never even been to a dentist before.

In order to conceptualize these staggering statistics, Professor Needleman of the University College London Eastman Dental Institute speculates that high sugar sports drinks, gels, and snacks with a high carbohydrate content.  Consuming both high sugar and high carbohydrate foods and drinks without frequent brushing contributes to cavity formation and other oral health problems.

Needleman was quoted as saying, “Oral health is important for well-being and successful elite sporting performance.  It is amazing that many professional athletes — people who dedicate a huge amount of time and energy to honing their physical abilities — do not have sufficient support for their oral-health needs, even though this negatively impacts on their training and performance.”

Again, we see that poor oral health can affect all aspects of a person's life even as an Olympic athlete.  Easily treatable ailments like dental cavities should not keep an athlete from performing to his or her best potential.

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. Kim or Dr.PradhanDr. 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.

Sources:

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/091/130930093722.htm
http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/267026.php
http://www.examiner.com/article/london-olympic-athletes-had-terrible-teeth-lots-of-cavities-gum-disease
http://corporate.comcast.com/images/sochi.jpg

Tooth Fairy's Generosity Growing Over the Years

February 27th, 2014

tooth fairyIf you a young investor and still happen to have your baby teeth, stick with the Tooth Fairy! Apparently, the Tooth Fairy's average payoff was up 44.6 percent last year! According to a poll from insurer Delta Dental, the average gift for a displaced tooth rose last year to $3.50, up from $2.42 in 2012. Like with the regular stock market investments, the Tooth Fairy can pay off big if you get in early. First-time tooth losers earned more than they did for other teeth in 59 percent of homes. Kids got an average of $4.51for their first tooth, a 29.2 percent increase from last year.

Besides, every Fairy is different, some can leave really special gifts under your pillow, like toys, gum or a lovely hand-written note. Here is what some kids find under their teeth:

  • For our family, she leaves $1 if Mom or Dad pull the tooth out for the child," shares Jacy Cheney of Washington. "If they pull it out themselves, or it falls out on its own, then it's $2."
  • "The tooth fairy always leave $1, a personal note (written with my opposite hand), a tooth brush and fairy dust!" offers Erika Deady-Wohlers of tutupourmondeux.com.
  • "The tooth fairy leaves $2 per tooth and $5 per molar," reveals Mary Anschutz. "However, if the tooth fairy is so busy that he or she cannot make it, i.e., she forgets, then the amount gets doubled."
  • "Our tooth fairy leaves small gifts instead of money," shares Roo Wyda of Oops! Sheet Inc.. "Puzzles, crafts, something to delight and engage her!"

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. Kim or Dr.Pradhan. Dr. 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.cbsnews.com/news/tooth-fairy-pays-off-better-than-the-stock-market/
http://www.sheknows.com/parenting/articles/842499/how-much-does-the-tooth-fairy-pay
http://www.theoriginaltoothfairypoll.com/the-original-poll/

Hi-Chew - Can it Chew Away Our Enamel?

February 26th, 2014

hi-chew candyYou have probably heard of Hi-Chew candy, especially if you are a parent and live in Wellesley or MetroWest area. This caramel candy became a favorite snack for a lot of teenagers, you can find it in any 7-Eleven store. As a parent, that makes me concerned with the impact this fad can have on our kids' health. So I did a little research.

Turns out, Hi-Chew company has been on the market in Japan for more than 80 years, and now is extremely popular in the local Asian markets (China, Taiwan, Australia and New Zealand). There are over 100 flavors of Hi-Chew candy created, it clams to be the most delicious chewing gym that/candy that dissolves in your mouth, like Starburst. According to Swellesley Report, the candy, described by some as a tastier and less plasticky version of Starbursts, is chewy — as the name implies — and features a colorful and  flavorful goo in the middle of a firmer white exterior. You didn’t want to hear this, but it has been described as “crack for kids,” according to one woman who passed along this comment from a 7th grader.
The ingredients, however, don't look too good to me:

nutrition hi-chewingredients greenapple hi-chew

 

 

 

 

 

 

A serving of the candy has both 31 grams of sugar and acids (Citric and DL-Malic acids), which is an alarming fact. According to the article in the magazine of Academy of General Dentistry, What many people don’t know is that Citric acid —which is used as flavor enhancer and preservative — can severely damage teeth and cause significant erosion. The amount of sugar the candy contains can be detrimental to the teeth. They become even more vulnerable due to the sticky consistency of the candy - it stays on the surface of the teeth!

Although it's hard to persuade your teens to be careful with the candy that is manufactured to be sweet, juicy and somewhat addicting, you, as a parent, have to make sure they understand that indulging in this fad might cause a few new cavities.

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. Kim or Dr.PradhanDr. 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://theswellesleyreport.com/2014/02/wellesley-hooked-on-hi-chew-candy-from-japan/
http://www.grandavenuedental.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/Jan14_DamagingDiets-from-Impact-AGD.pdf
http://www.hi-chew.com/
http://www.asianfoodgrocer.com/blog/morinaga-mango-hi-chew-blog.jpg

Uncovering the Past: Bacteria Withstanding the Test of Time

February 25th, 2014

ANCIENT TEETH Recently, a team of researched have discovered well-preserved oral bacteria on skeletons around 1,000 years old! What secrets do these remains hold?

The scientists found that dental plaque was what kept the bacteria and particles of food on the teeth in tact, which allowed the research team to look further into what oral pathogens were present in the past. They found that even with the drastic changes in diet and hygiene (we hope!), the ancient human cavity is the home to a variety of pathogens and bacteria similar to the ones found today.

What’s even more exciting was that the ancient human oral microbiome found contained the basic line of antibiotic resistance, which is more than eight centuries before the invention of therapeutic antibiotics in the 1940s! The scientists also uncovered dietary DNA from the dental plaque found, which give the researchers a window into the types of vegetables and fruits consumed.

Although these were exciting finds for the research team, the scientists have a long road ahead of them. Gaining a wealth of data is always an exciting event, but it will be a challenge for the researchers to piece together and identify the genetic sequences that came forth from the ancient oral microbiome they discovered.

These findings can truly be a great step forward towards a better understanding of the evolution of the human oral microbiome and the beginnings of periodontal disease. Periodontal disease affects more than 10% of the world population and has been associated with several systemic diseases including pulmonary disease, cardiovascular disease and even type II diabetes. Through analyzing the human oral microbiome, scientists can track the progression of bacteria, paving new ways to prevent periodontal disease and contain bacterial production within the oral cavity.

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. Kim or Dr.PradhanDr. 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.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/02/140223131629.htm
http://www.natureworldnews.com/articles/6158/20140224/1000-year-old-dental-plaque-reveals-microbial-pompeii.htm
http://images.natureworldnews.com/data/images/full/4756/fossilised-dental-plaque-calculus-on-the-teeth-of-a-middle-aged-man-from-the-medieval-site-of-dalheim-germany-ca-ad-1100.jpg?w=600

Stress on Children: Dental Consequences

February 23rd, 2014

Copy of smile-familyStress is sometimes seen as an inevitable problem that is here to stay throughout a lifetime. There are many sources of stress, including school, work, family and friends. While it does not come as a surprise that adults deal with stress on a daily basis, but it must be kept in mind that children are not exempt from this fact.

School comes to mind as the main source of stress for children, but other events such as world events, natural disasters, familial issues, death, and even separation anxiety as a toddler can present as stressful situations. These occurrences can lead to a physical response in children that can adversely affect oral health.

Some tall tale signs of stress can reveal themselves in various forms in children. These include moodiness, lying, bullying, physical symptoms of headaches and stomach aches, changes in eating habits, and different sleeping schedules. These changes can lead to unhealthy habits, such as indulging in sugary food choices, resulting in higher rates of dental decay. Decay can lead to multiple dental visits for fillings and even abscesses, which are bacteria-induced infections resulting in a swelling.  A child suffering from stress can also go back to habits of thumb sucking, which interferes with proper forming and erupting of teeth.

As parents, it is important to recognize these signs of stress and to make active steps to alleviating it. Here are some tips to helping children cope with stress:

  • Spend quality time with them on a daily basis
  • Have conversations about their day and look for root causes of the stress
  • Help them keep up with a good amount of sleep and a healthy diet
  • Appointments for wellness visits and follow-up visits to the dentist can help ensure healthy teeth

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. Kim or Dr.PradhanDr. 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.colgate.com/app/CP/US/EN/OC/Information/Glossary/Abscess.cvsp
http://www.colgate.com/app/CP/US/EN/OC/Information/Articles/ColgateNewandNow/Community/2013/September/article/SW-281474979201581.cvsp
http://link.springer.com/article/10.1023%2FA%3A1009576213027#page-1

A Cup of Coffee and a Beautiful Smile

February 18th, 2014

women-drinking-coffeeDrinking a hot cup of coffee in the morning is a daily ritual for many.  In fact, many people see caffeine intake as a necessity for proper functioning and alertness at work or at school.  According to the National Coffee Association, a whopping 83% of Americans have reported that they drink coffee.

Although this tasty drink may help us power through a 6 AM commute, it is important to be aware of the negative effects of frequent coffee intake on oral health.  The porous enamel of our teeth quickly absorbs the liquid and it ultimately causes staining.  If untreated, the dark drink can cause permanent yellowing.  Furthermore, coffee is considered an acidic drink.  Thus, it slowly wears down enamel and contributes to tooth decay.

Another negative side of effect of long term coffee drinking is bad breath and dry mouth.  Caffeine slows saliva production in the mouth.  Without saliva, we are unable to effectively wash away and kill bacteria that lead to plaque build-up.  As a result, the growth of bacteria causes a foul smell in the mouth.

However, there is hope for avid coffee drinkers out there.  Here are some tips to combat some of the negative effects of coffee:

  • Rinse with water following every cup of coffee
  • Limit your overall intake of coffee
  • Drink coffee through a straw if possible (like when you’re drinking iced coffee)
  • Do not let coffee sit in your mouth longer than necessary
  • Drink coffee at set times rather than constantly sipping it throughout the day
  • Always brush and floss
  • Adding cream to lighten the color of your coffee will not decrease its staining properties

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. Kim. Dr. 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.therabreath.com/articles/blog/fresh-breath-happenings/coffee-public-enemy-for-teeth-32866.asp
http://www.mynoblesmile.com/how-does-coffee-affect-my-teeth/
http://www.colgate.com/app/CP/US/EN/OC/Information/Articles/ColgateNewandNow/Personal/2013/February/article/SW-281474979067209.cvsp

Ancient Dental Problems

February 17th, 2014

neanderthal-jaws-(2)Fossil evidence has shown that our Neanderthal ancestors suffered from many of the same dental problems that afflict us today including bad breath (halitosis) and caries.

Skeletal fossil remains dated about 15,000 years old found in a town in Morocco have given us insight into the prehistoric hunter-gatherer diets and their resulting oral health problems.  A study by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found that a staggering 51% of the teeth found had cavities and abscesses.  Furthermore, evidence has shown us a glimpse of their distinct diet of acorns, pine nuts, and fermentable fruits.  Just like the formation of any other cavity, researchers predict that bacteria broke down carbohydrate rich foods left on teeth.  Ultimately, these bacteria would release harmful acids that cause enamel degradation characteristic of caries.

Another Neanderthal fossil specimen found in France dated an astounding 175,000 years ago was also found to have severe abscesses that would have prevented her from eating properly.  The significance of this particular finding was that it showed that Neanderthals must have helped one another eat and gain nutrients.  One researcher hypothesizes that a peer must have chewed up food for this specimen and fed her in order for her to survive well into her 40s.

Interestingly, both accounts show that many of the dental problems people face today were also the same problems our ancient ancestors faced.

If you have any more questions, 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 questionsContact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment and consultation. 

References:

http://racers-republic.com/health/prehistoric-men-had-toothache-and-bad-breath-4495/
http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/story?id=98275

Children Skipping Breakfast Are at a Higher Risk of Cavities

February 3rd, 2014

smiling girl

The late morning rush to school many families experience and/or lack of food due to insufficient funds that often results in children not eating breakfast is detrimental to their oral health. When children, particularly preschoolers, miss out on breakfast their chances of having tooth decay rises, according to a study in a journal issue in Journal of the American Dental Association conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The study focused on the association between healthy eating habits, including eating breakfast and having healthy balanced meals, as well as cavities in the primary teeth of more than 4,000 preschoolers among the age of two to five years old.

Researchers who conducted the study determined that children in this age group who skip breakfast are about four times more likely to develop cavities.  Also, children who do not eat the recommended five servings of fruits and vegetables per day are three times as likely to get cavities.

Young children will have a reduced risk of getting cavities if healthy eating practices are established. Emphasizing the importance of eating breakfast daily will not only promote oral health, but also reduce tooth decay in children.

It is also important to be careful about the foods you choose to consume for breakfast. There are many beneficial snacks and breakfast foods that can help stimulate a healthy atmosphere in your mouth. Healthy teeth are a result of consuming healthy foods and drinks such as milk, green tea, yogurt, raisins, cheese, and crunchy fruits and vegetables. Also, drinks with calcium not only strengthen bones, but also ensure healthy teeth.

Drs. Ali & Ali and their team at Wellesley Dental Group will be more than happy to answer your questions, thoughts, or concerns about oral health or the significance of a healthy breakfast. Feel free to contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com.

References:

http://www.webmd.com/parenting/news/20040116/eating-breakfast-may-prevent-cavities

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/01/040115080612.htm

http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/01/11/food-for-teeth_n_1200301.html

Bioteeth: the Possibility of Biological Tooth Replacement

January 31st, 2014

man woman happy smile

Scientists have recently created a method for replacing missing teeth through the use of bio-engineered material developed from a person’s own gum cells. Up until now, dentists have been using implant-based methods to accommodate tooth loss. However, with this new breakthrough in dental research, perhaps patients may be able to receive a biological tooth replacement down the road!

Professor Paul Sharpe, a specialist in craniofacial development and stem cell biology King’s College London, published his findings in the Journal of Dental Research and was excited to present studies showing promising results on creating of “bio-teeth,” which is the generation of immature teeth that are similar those found in embryo. Professor Sharpe believes that these can be transplanted into adults and eventually develop to become perfectly functioning teeth. The team’s research showed that these embryonic immature teeth can grow normally in the adult mouth and may potentially be used clinically.

So far, the researchers have been able to isolate epithelial cells derived adult human gum tissue taken from patients at the Dental Institute at King’s College London. They were grown in the lab and then combined with mice cells that were known to form teeth. Through transplanting, Professor Sharpe and his team were created hybrid human/mouse teeth that had formed dentine and enamel, along with viable roots. This research shows that these easily accessible epithelial cells may be a feasible source for creating the human bio-tooth. Professor Sharpe explains there is still some ways to go in the progress of creating bio-teeth. Still more research needs to be done in identifying adult sources of specific epithelial cells, which are cells that line the surfaces of structures throughout the body; these cells may be the key in forming bio-tooth. Currently, scientists have only been able to create viable teeth through the use of embryonic cells; it is important for more research to be done to look for ways to manipulate adult human cells to develop into tooth. With more effort dedicated to this field of research, researches may one day be able to make bio-teeth a reality in patients needing teeth replacement!

But for now, patients have the opportunity to receive implants, which have been a successful method in dentistry to replace teeth. Usually made from titanium, implants are placed within the bone; quite amazingly, the bone in the jaw accepts the new structure and the implant readily fuses with the bone. Dentists have been using this method for restoring a single tooth and even a group of teeth that could have gone missing due to significant tooth decay or fracture.

If you believe that you may be in need of dental implants, feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group; 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.

References:

Journal of Dental Research

WebMD

Maternal Smoking Can Cause Cleft-Lip in Babies

January 29th, 2014

pregnant womanIn the United States alone, there is a 1/750 chance that a baby is born with isolated, also called non-syndromic, cleft lip and/or palate. While this condition can be corrected through various surgeries, families of the child with this condition can be inundated both emotionally and economically. Throughout the world, there are about 12 million women each year who smoke through pregnancies. About one in every 600 U.S. babies is born with a cleft lip and/or palate. The American Journal of Human Genetics published results from a study done at the University of Iowa demonstrating that if a pregnant woman smokes 16 cigarettes or more per day, the chances of her GSTT1-lacking fetus developing a cleft increase 20 fold.

Researchers at the University of Iowa have found through an international study that some babies are predisposed to cleft lip and/or palate because of their inability to detoxify and process cigarette smoke. The study showed that the fetuses lacking both copies of a gene used to thwart the smoke and have mothers who smoked during pregnancy had a greater risk of developing cleft lip. These scientists have compiled a last of 16 genes that are directly related in cigarette smoke toxicity and determined whether variations of these genes would influence a baby’s ability to remove the toxins. The researchers found that the GSTT1 gene made a significant contribution to clefting; this gene is responsible for 20 different enzymes in the body, specifically essential for common detoxification processes. The study also found that 60 percent of babies with Asian ancestry and 25 percent of babies of European ancestry do not possess copies of the gene called GSTT1. Without this gene, the baby is unable to eliminate the toxins from the smoke that has been spread across the placenta.

During any stage of life, it is always important to make healthy choices. A poor health decision is not always specific to one location in the body, but can very well affect many different areas of the body. If you have any more questions, 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.

Ref: http://www.colgate.com/app/CP/US/EN/OC/Information/Articles/ADA/2007/article/ADA-03-Mom-Smoking-Cleft-Lip.cvsp

http://www.nih.gov/news/pr/jan2007/nidcr-03.htm

How Exactly Does Smoking Affect Oral Health?

January 28th, 2014

While smoking has been found to lead to various unhealthy consequences, it also has been linked with resulting in poor oral health.

Smoking and tobacco-based products have been shown to result in gum disease. It damages bone and soft tissue of teeth and interferes with the functioning of gum tissue cells. This leaves smokers more susceptible to infections, including periodontal disease, and also tends to lessen blood flow to the gums, which would hinder wound healing.

The Journal of the American Dental Association published results showing that cigar smokers have experienced tooth loss and alveolar bone loss, which is the bone within the jawbone responsible for anchoring teeth. The rate at which bone and tooth are loss for cigar smokers are very similar to cigarette smokers. Pipe smokers also are in danger of tooth loss; moreover, they are also at risk for oral and pharyngeal (throat) cancer, even if the smoke is not inhaled. Other oral health consequences included halitosis, stained teeth, and gum disease.

While some smokers believe that using smokeless tobacco products tend to be safer, that is not the case. Similar to cigars and cigarettes, smokeless tobacco products, including chewing tobacco, contain at least 28 chemicals that have shown to increase the risk of oral cancer, along with cancer of the throat and esophagus. Smokeless tobacco can also irritate gum tissue, leading to the receding and pulling away of teeth. When gum tissue recedes, teeth roots are left more exposed, which increases the chance for tooth decay to occur. The Journal of the American Dental Association also showed that chewing tobacco users were four times more likely than nonusers to have tooth decay. Smokeless tobacco also contains sand and grit, which can easily wear down teeth.

Even though you may be a tobacco product user, it is never too late to quit. Studies have shown that 11 years after quitting, former smokers were found to have risks of developing gum disease that were not too different from those who had never smoked. Cutting out tobacco products can truly lead to healthier oral 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.

References:
http://www.webmd.com/oral-health/guide/smoking-oral-health

http://www.dentalplans.com/dentalhealtharticles/53837/smoking-tobacco-may-affect-oral-health.html

The Dangers of Food Coloring

January 27th, 2014

Soda bubblesNot only do sodas contain excessive amounts of sugar and high levels of acidity, but also carcinogens!

A chemical present in many sodas of golden-brown color may be dangerous to your health. "Caramel coloring" or 4-methylimidazole may cause cancer, says he World Health Organization's International Agency for Research on Cancer.

The state of California supports that opinion and limits manufacturers to 29 micrograms of exposure for the average consumer per day. The products that exceed that limit have to have a warning label that reads: "WARNING: This product contains a chemical known to the State of California to cause cancer."

Unfortunatelly, a lot of companies do not strickly abide by this standard and add the warning, including Pepsi ("Pepsi One") or Goya ("Malta").

The FDA (Food and Drug Administration) doesn't set federal limits on 4-Mel in food, which means that in some cases consumers outside California end up drinking a drink with a higher concentration of the chemical. For instance, Pepsi One purchased by the Consumer Reports group in New York contained 4 times as much 4-Mel as the same drink bought in Califonia same month.

Consumers interested in more information on 4-Mel can check out the FDA's FAQ page.

Ref.: http://www.cnn.com/2014/01/23/health/consumer-reports-soda-caramel-coloring/

Img: http://goo.gl/6kMlZK

Chewing May Prevent Memory Loss

January 23rd, 2014

older lady teethAccording to research, chewing stimulates the mind and can lower the stress levels. Just remember to opt for the sugar-free gym!

When new memories are received, they are stored in an area associated with learning, known as the hippocampus. As individuals grow older, it is more likely that some will begin to experiences deterioration of hippocampal cells, leading to a loss of cognitive functions, including memory, problem solving and decision-making. Research shows that there is a connection between lack of teeth and loss of cognitive function, leading to a higher risk of memory loss.

Japanese researchers led by Gifu University School of Medicine’s Dr. Minuro Onozuka have genetically manipulated laboratory mice to age prematurely. When this occurred, mice shows signs of aging, including cataracts, hair loss and failing memory. Scientists then had the molar teeth extracted from the mice to keep them from chewing; these mice were placed in a water maze in order to locate a hidden platform. While young mice were able recall the specified location in a water maze, old mice that had their molars taken out were unable to find the location, and constantly went in the wrong direction. The scientists then examined the hippocampus of the old mice and found that cells within the hippocampus, known as glia, had worsened more than usual.

Dr. Onozuka was able to show that chew seems to stimulate the mind, increasing hippocampal signals during activity. The action of chewing actually sends a signal to the hippocampus, which ends up lessening the stress hormone levels in the blood. When older people chew less, their stress levels tend to rise, which can lead to a decline in short-term memory. While research has found a correlation between teeth and memory, it does not mean that they are linked, having a causal effect. However, scientists recommend that individuals chew often, releasing the build up of stress and optimizing the activity of hippocampal signals.

If you have any more questions, 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.

References:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/670612.stm

The Daily Grind

January 21st, 2014

stress woman

Teeth grinding, also known as bruxism, may be a habit that can easily go unnoticed. Most people usually grind their teeth throughout the day, and for the most part, occasional teeth grinding does not cause significant harm. However, grinding can continue on a regular basis and often occurs during sleep. After a night of grinding, people tend to wake up with a headache and even a sore jaw.

Although teeth grinding may not initially seem too big of a problem, chronic bruxism can lead to the fracturing and loosening of teeth. Constant grinding can also result in micro-cracks in the enamel, which makes teeth more susceptible to decay. Bridges, crowns, root canals, and implants may then be necessary down the road. Teeth grinding not only results in tooth loss, but can also cause hearing loss and problems with the jaw.

Here are some tips to prevent teeth grinding:

Researchers have attributed teeth grinding to stress and even anger. When things get heavy, take a break and go for a walk. Learn how to find an outlet during stressful and frustrating situations; your teeth will thank you!

Try to avoid foods and drinks that contain caffeine, such as certain carbonated drinks and coffee.

Chewing on pencils and pens may be a way to pass by time, but it can allow jaw muscles to become used to clenching frequently, leading to a higher likelihood of teeth grinding.

It is possible to also train yourself from clenching and grinding teeth. Be mindful of jaw movements throughout the day. Positioning the tip of your tongue between your teeth can help allow jaw muscles to relax.

If you believe that you may be grinding teeth, or you are aware that teeth grinding continues to persist, don’t hesitate to come in for a consultation. We can look for signs of bruxism and assess its causes whether it be stress-related, TMJ, bite issues, etc, and see if a night guard is necessary to protect your teeth.

Drs. Ali & Ali and their team at Wellesley Dental Group will be very happy to answer your questions about oral health and teeth grinding. Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com!

References: Webmd, mayoclinic

Pic credit: http://goo.gl/qiQh1K

Is a Dental Visit Every 6 Months Still the Standard?

January 16th, 2014

Dental Check UpDentists have long been asking patients to come in for a checkup every six months, setting this as the golden standard. However, new studies show that those who have high risk factors of developing periodontal disease may need to schedule preventive visits more often.

The Journal of Dental Research looked at insurance claims data for 5,117 adults mainly located in Michigan, and compared tooth extractions to the patient’s history of one or two dental visits, also with respect to his or her risk of periodontal disease. High-risk patients have a history of smoking and diabetes, or variations in the interleukin-1 gene, which research has shown to be a link to periodontal disease in Caucasians. Subjects that were characterized as low-risk patients did not have any of these risk factors. It was found that there was no significant difference in tooth loss between low-risk patients that either went in for a checkup once or twice a year. However, among the high-risk subjects, 17% of patients who followed the suggested biannual dental visits still had tooth extractions, while 22% of high-risk patients who went in once a year had their tooth extracted.

Doctors now believe that it is important for high-risk patients to make more frequent visits; the published findings suggest that the number of dental visits should be customized, fitting individual’s needs. However, doctors stress that these results do not indicate that patients don’t need to see dentists at all; they just need to be aware of their susceptibility to periodontal disease and go in for checkups accordingly. Low-risk individuals should still come in for checkups regularly to make sure good oral health is maintained. If you have any concerns, Drs. Ali & Ali and their team at Wellesley Dental Group will be very happy to answer your questions. Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com!

References:

http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/06/10/rethinking-the-twice-yearly-dentist-visit/?ref=health

http://www.iuasda.org/2013/06/12/new-study-claims-little-evidence-supports-twice-yearly-dental-visits-for-preventive-care/

INVISALIGN® Special Event

January 15th, 2014

smile-familyLEARN HOW INVISALIGN CAN WORK FOR YOU

Thursday, January 23rd
3 - 6 pm

Drs. Ali & Ali will be providing FREE consultations to answer your questions about Invisalign treatment, the clear way to straighten teeth. If you have wondered if Invisalign is right for you, make an appointment for this special event.

Down payment matching with dollar value up to $500
Complimentary teeth whitening - a $550 value
Financing options available

Space is limited to the first 10 appointments.

If you would like to schedule or have any questions please don't hesitate to call
(781)237-9071 or email smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com

Read more about Invisalign here!

Cutting Back on Chewing Gum May Mean Less Headaches!

January 9th, 2014

headacheWhether it’s fighting bad breath, quenching a dry mouth, or even just for some good bubble popping, making a grab for a stick of gum has become almost an afterthought.

However, recent research indicates that chewing gum may actually be the culprit behind headaches. Dr. Nathan Watemberg of Tel Aviv University’s research demonstrated that teenagers and even younger children who regularly chew gum ended up with reoccurring headaches. 

When patients are treated for migraines and tension headaches, there is usually additional testing or medication prescribed to determine the cause of pain. Dr. Watemberg stated that out of the 30 patients that decided to stop gum chewing, 26 found a significant improvement and 19 of them had found that their headache had left completely. Dr. Watemberg then took a step further and asked twenty of his patients to go back to gum chewing, and within a couple days, all of them reported that the pain had come back.

Headaches have been known to be a common and reoccurring problem throughout childhood, especially in teenage girls. Past research have shown that these headaches can be set off by a range of stressors, including lack of sleep, tiredness, missed meals, noise, and menstruation, and even video games! But little research has put gum chewing in the spotlight.

Previous studies that have linked gum chewing to headaches offer various explanations; however, Dr. Watemberg believes that the amount of chewing can cause significant stress on the temporomandibular joint, TMJ, which is the area where the jaw meets the skull. Many people tend to continue to chew their gum even after the taste is gone, which then continues to put stress on the TMJ. Dr. Watemberg believes if children and teenagers should consider limiting the amount of gum they chew, they will be drastically less susceptible to the headaches that plague their age group.

Whether you are in your adolescent years are well past your teenage years, it’s still important to consider the stress that is placed daily on the TMJ. When it’s up to the third stick of gum for the day, think of your TMJ and maybe it’ll save you from that reoccurring migraine! If you have any more questions, 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 questionsContact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment and consultation. 

 

References:

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/12/131219130937.htm
http://www.webmd.com/oral-health/guide/temporomandibular-disorders
http://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2013/12/how-chewing-gum-can-cause-headaches/282569/

Wellesley Townsman 10: Femina and Ejaz Ali

January 6th, 2014

Drs.Ejaz and Femina AliEach year the readers of Wellesley Townsman Newspaper recognize the achievements and, most importantly, community involvement of Wellesley-connected individuals or groups who they believe have had a significant impact on the town or the larger world, especially over the last 12 months.

Their choices, plus staff nominations, become the pool from which the Townsman 10 are chosen. The Townsman 10 are not necessarily well-known; they may be making quiet contributions that we feel deserve the spotlight. They need not be the most popular folks in town — this is not a popularity contest. The one thing they do share is that they are somehow making a difference, whether behind the scenes or center stage.

Wellesley Townsman Newspaper

Why they were nominated: Femina and Ejaz Ali recognize the importance of giving back, and can make going to the dentist a tolerable—if not pleasurable—experience, according to Joanna Bandte. 

I immediately fell in love with their engaging personalities, wonderful staff, and the mission that drives their practice when I saw them turn my children's nervousness about seeing a dentist into excitedness," Bandte said in nominating the pair for the Townsman 10. "They treat everyone who walks through their door like family, and I believe that comes from their connectedness and commitment to the Wellesley community."

"I've watched first hand as Drs. Ali and Ali have extended their generosity and passion for community service to Wellesley and beyond. I am especially appreciative of this, because living in an affluent town like Wellesley, it is hard to find opportunities to teach our children the importance of giving back. I am grateful that I need look no further than Wellesley Dental Group, where they've encouraged my children to drop off their gently used clothes, books, and toys at their office for Cradles to Crayons."

Wellesley Dental Group’s 2013 candy drive netted over 7,000 pounds of leftover Halloween candy that was sent to troops overseas as a sweet way to show their appreciation for the armed forces’ efforts. For the elementary schools that donated the most candy, the Alis awarded a total of $850.

"Wellesley Dental Group, whose philanthropic mission is at the heart of their practice, has set a terrific example for others to follow."

- Published in the Jan. 2 issue of The Wellesley Townsman Newspaper.

Read more: http://www.wickedlocal.com/wellesley/features/x920322020/Townsman-10-Femina-and-Ejaz-Ali#ixzz2pdPY70dr 

How Can You Help Prevent Cavities?

December 18th, 2013

shutterstock_31383964Prevent Cavities with Fluoride Varnish

Growing up, children start to develop a sweet tooth and begin to dig in to various desserts and candies. While sweets may leave kids happy, their teeth may be battling the development of cavities. A great way to slow down or help cavities from getting bigger is to give a child fluoride varnish. Fluoride varnish is a protective coating that can be painted on a child’s teeth to keep cavities from forming. If a child already has cavities, no fear! Fluoride varnish can be painted over teeth with cavities to prevent them from worsening. This varnish can be painted on a child’s teeth one or two times per year. Researchers have deemed ...the application of fluoride varnish to be safe and accepted. While this resin-based varnish adheres to teeth, fluoride is ingested over a period of time as the varnish slowly comes off. While a fluoride varnish can help maintain good oral health, it is not a ticket out of visiting a dentist to receive routine check ups. When this varnish is applied, the child’s teeth may look yellow in color and be a bit sticky to the touch on the first day. No worries; the color and the stickiness will eventually disappear. After a coat of fluoride varnish is applied, children can drink water at any time. However, children should only eat soft foods for their next meal and they should try to avoid sticky foods for the remainder of the day. These foods can include chewing gum, gummy bears, toffee, etc. A fluoride varnish also allows children to have a free pass on brushing their teeth for the day; this is the only time children should not brush or clean their teeth until the following day.

 

Don't forget, fluoride varnishes are also recommended for adults!  If you have any more questions, feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group; they will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com

 

Also, check out this AGD fact sheet!

 

 

References:

 

http://www.health.gov.sk.ca/fluoride-varnish

http://www.astdd.org/docs/Sept2007FINALFlvarnishpaper.pdf

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12137653

http://www.ada.org/sections/newsAndEvents/pdfs/fluoridation_facts.pdf

The Upcoming ‘Great American Smokeout'

November 19th, 2013

smokeoutWhile most people are aware of the dangers that smoking results in, it is surprising to most that dentists can have the ability to not only inform others on smoking effects on overall health, but also the damaging effects of smoking on oral health. Smoking and other tobacco products have been linked to periodontal, or gum, disease through affecting the attachment of bone and soft tissue to teeth. Along with increasing the risk of periodontal disease, smoking has been linked to specific cancers. There are toxins and carcinogens present in tobacco products, including cigars, cigarettes, pipe tobacco, and chewing tobacco. The American Lung Association has found that cigarettes cause 90% of all lung cancer deaths. Smokers of cigars and pipes have an increased risk of cancer of the oral cavity as well as the overall body. Also, don’t be swayed into thinking that tobacco products are harmless; while they are “smokeless” options including chewing tobacco, there are still more than 28 cancer-causing chemicals found in this form of tobacco. Chewing tobacco can cause cancer in the cheek, gums and lips, and this cancer usually developed where the tobacco is held in the mouth. Regardless of what form of smoking, there is no doubt that smoking is harmful to the oral cavity and the overall health of the body.

 

The American Cancer Society is holds an event called Great American Smokeout on the third Thursday of November to encourage current smokers to use that day to make a solid plan to quit, or to start making plans prior to the event and to quit on the day of. The American Cancer Society explains that smokers are most successful in stopping the habit is to have access to smoking-cessation hotlines, stop-smoking groups, counseling, nicotine replacement products, online quit groups, and encourage and support from friends and family members. When smokers implement two or more of these sources, they have a better chance of quitting.

 

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.

 

 

http://www.colgate.com/app/CP/US/EN/OC/Information/Articles/ADA/2013/article/ADA-10-Great-American-Smokeout-Is-Nov-21.cvsp

 

http://www.webmd.com/oral-health/guide/smoking-oral-health

 

http://medicalcenter.osu.edu/patientcare/healthcare_services/dental_care/oral_cancer_and_tobacco/Pages/index.aspx

 

Spirit of Patriotism at Our Candy Drive!

November 11th, 2013

[caption id="attachment_5854" align="aligncenter" width="1000"]National Guards at the Candy Drive National Guards at the Candy Drive[/caption]

 

We did it again! This year’s Candy Drive was a great success, and we are proud to say we have collected even more candy than last year: over 7340 pounds so far—and the candy is still pouring in!  This weighs more than a Humvee! The candy will be sent as care packages with carepacks.org to the troops overseas as a sweet reminder of home.

Here are some highlights from the Candy Drive!

We were joined by so many wonderful people and organizations! We had the National Guards come out, along with a Humvee! We were also joined by some Veterans, who served as an amazing reminder for everything our troops do for us. We also had Chief Cunningham and the Wellesley Police Department, along with Chief DeLorie and the Wellesley Fire Department—everyone who keeps us safe! All the local public schools were represented, and a lot of children and school principals came personally as well. Even local businesses and organizations came to drop off candy and show their support!

[caption id="attachment_5841" align="alignleft" width="300"]Community getting together! Community getting together![/caption]

 

The spirit of patriotism was running high, just in time for Veteran’s Day! Two of our children sang the National Anthem, and we had a moment of silence for those overseas. Everyone was waving around handheld flags with big smiles on their faces.

[caption id="attachment_5842" align="alignright" width="300"]Julia and Aidan Bandte from Hardy School singing the national anthem. Julia and Aidan Bandte from Hardy School singing the national anthem.[/caption]

 

 

 

 

 

The Wellesley Public Schools had a little contest to see which school could collect the most candy. The winner was Upham, whose PTO was awarded with a $500 check, and second and third place went to Hardy and Sprague, respectively.

 

[caption id="attachment_5845" align="alignleft" width="300"]Chief Cunnigham presenting a check to the PTO Contest Winner Chief Cunnigham of the Wellesley Police Department presenting a check to Wellesley Public School PTO Contest Winner[/caption]

 

 

[caption id="attachment_5874" align="alignright" width="300"]Veterans Lindsay Ellms and Pete Jones and Carl Nelson from the Wellesley Celebrations Committee. Veterans Lindsay Ellms and Pete Jones and Carl Nelson from the Wellesley Celebrations Committee.[/caption]

Our World War II Veterans Lindsay Ellms and Pete Jones were honored. Wellesley Celebration Committee was also represented by Carl Nelson and Pete Jones. Thank you to Roy Switzler for your help and support.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It is heart warming to see the whole town come together in the spirit of giving. The Wellesley Fire Department and Wellesley Police Department, along with the National guards supporting the town-wide initiative to support the troops. All Wellesley Public Schools participated with many private and neighboring town schools.

 

[caption id="attachment_5878" align="alignleft" width="300"]Wellesley Fire Chief DeLorie and Police Chief Cunningham with the Wellesley School Principals and Drs. Ali & Ali Wellesley Fire Chief DeLorie and Police Chief Cunningham with the Wellesley School Principals and Drs. Ali & Ali[/caption]

 

At the letter writing table, kids and adults both had an opportunity to write a personal note or card to send along with the candy to our troops. We imagine that these kind words of love and support will be even sweeter than the candy!

 

[caption id="attachment_5860" align="alignright" width="300"]Dear Troops... Dear Troops...[/caption]

 

 

 

 

It has been so touching to see the message of health and giving being spread across our community. We really could not have done it without everyone’s help, and we want to thank everyone who participated! And lastly, a big thank you to the Wellesley Dental Group team that put in the hard work to make our Candy Drive such a success!

Making Big News and A Bigger Impact!

 

[caption id="attachment_5894" align="alignleft" width="300"]Tufts Jumbos Making a Difference! Tufts Jumbos Making a Difference![/caption]

Boston.com

Boston.com

Wellesley Weston Magazine

Wellesley Weston Magazine

Patch 

Patch

swellesley

bostonglobe.com

WickedLocal

InAgist

[gallery ids="5869,5857,5868"]

 

 Together We Can Do So Much!

Our Candy Brigade!

 A Note Sweeter Than Candy!

Candy Pouring In!

Candy Drive Flyer

Candy Drive Kick-Off

 

Thank you Maura Wayman Photography for taking beautiful pictures and to Haynes Management for being such great neighbors!

Together We Can Do So Much!

November 9th, 2013

Together we can do so much! It was wonderful to see the Wellesley and Metrowest community united through the spirit of philanthropy. The candy drive is not only a wonderful way to promote oral health but it is also a way to give back. Our mission of being smile ambassadors is two-fold: promoting healthier teeth for our children and  also bringing smiles to the troops overseas. Seeing all of the kids give up their extra candy and writing beautiful heart-warming letters to send to the troops is incredibly touching, and shows just how much our community cherishes our troops.

Special thanks to all the Wellesley Public School Principals, Chief Rick DeLorie of the Wellesley Fire Department, Chief Terrence Cunningham of the Wellesley Police Department, and Joanna Bandte for her tireless efforts in making this a huge success!

 

[caption id="attachment_5814" align="alignleft" width="202"]Zarah Ali trying to contain the candy. Zarah Ali trying to contain the candy.[/caption]

Wellesley Schools:

Bates  School

Fiske  School

Hardy  School

Hunnewell School

Schofield School

Sprague School

Tenacre School

Upham School

Wellesley High School 

Bright Horizons at Wellesley

Babson College

Other Town Schools:

[caption id="attachment_5817" align="alignright" width="300"]The whole town getting together! The whole town getting together![/caption]

Charles River School- Dover

Cabot School- Newton

Downey School- Westwood

Field School- Weston

High Rock School- Needham

Needham ECC- Needham

Newman School- Needham

Peirce School- West Newton

Saint Jude School- Waltham

 

[caption id="attachment_5830" align="alignleft" width="300"]Everyone getting together and sending the candy and handwritten notes off to the troops! Everyone getting together and sending the candy and handwritten notes off to the troops![/caption]

Organizations

Wellesley Mother's Forum

Wellesley Department of Veteran's Services

Wellesley Celebrations Committee

National Guard Family Program of Massachusetts

Wellesley Fire Department

Wellesley Police Department

 

[caption id="attachment_5832" align="alignright" width="199"]Overflowing candy! Overflowing candy![/caption]

 

Local Businesses

 

Magic Beans  

Au Pair USA

Boston Sports Club

BellaSante- Wellesley

Roche Bros- Wellesley

Metrowest Academy of Jiu Jitsu

AccuRev

 

Our Candy Drive Brigade!

November 7th, 2013

[gallery ids="5793,5799,5800,5801,5802,5803,5805,5806,5807,5808,5809,5810"]

 

It’s the day before we wrap up this year’s Candy Drive and the action never stops. Our Candy Brigade at work! We've been filling boxes upon boxes of candy to tomorrow's festivities. Our friend, Joanna Bandte, and our dental assistant, Helio,  has been so busy driving around town in a Uhaul to collect notes and candy from the community. So far we have collected from Sprague, Bates, Fiske, Schofield, Upham, Hardy, Magic Beans, Cabot, Downey, and the list is still growing! We can't wait to see how much we have in store this year.  Our Uhaul is filling up nicely and our office is already full of candy. We will have to bring our drive outside.

Mike , from Magic Beans came over, dropping off even more candy.  Magic Beans has been so incredibly generous again this year with their donation – a true symbol of the generosity of the Boston community.

We can hardly wait to see all the excited faces tomorrow as students, principals, parents, volunteers, national guard, veterans, and the media from all over the Metrowest area join together in the spirit of giving. We have children that will be singing the national anthem. It is amazing for us to see the community come together centering around the drive. We can’t imagine how happy the soldiers will be to receive all this candy and those beautiful letters.  It warms our hearts amidst this rainy day to know how much good we all are doing through this remarkable event. Keep up the wonderful work!

Generous contributors have been coming in and out of the office this week. If you haven’t already, pay us a visit! It’s not too late for you to join in on the fun and donate your candy and hand-written notes to the troops.  Stop by tomorrow morning and you’ll be able to see our ever-growing gargantuan and multi-colored candy display.

Donations to the Candy Drive will be happily accepted up until Friday, November 8 at Wellesley Dental Group on 5 Seaward Rd in Wellesley. We request that  donations be dropped off between 8 am to 11 am. All the candy and letters will be shipped overseas to the soldiers via CarePacks, a non-profit organization.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us at (781) 237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com.

 

Make sure to check us out on Boston.comWellesley Weston, and Patch!!

A Note Sweeter Than Candy

November 6th, 2013

DSC_0014 (2)

One of the sweetest notes from J. B. Our 10 year old smile ambassador :)

"Dear Troops,

As a thanks for supporting our country we hope you enjoy the candy that a lot of families bring for you every year. Thank you!"

Thanks to the Wellesley and surrounding communities our piles of notes and candy are expanding. It is not too late to donate any leftover candy or write a sweet note to send to the troops overseas. Especially the notes, they can perhaps be even sweeter than the candy. If you would like to participate or make a donation please email smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com or call (781)237-9071.

 

 

Find us on Boston.comWellesley Weston, and Patch!

 

 

Candy Pouring In!

November 5th, 2013

kids with candy 2013

We are happy to report that schools from Newton, Needham, Dover, Westwood, and beyond will be participating this year. This upcoming week we will be working closely with these schools, as well as daycares and community organizations, like the Wellesley Mother’s Forum. Also, we are happy to report that Magic Beans has joined hands and will be bringing all of their collected candy to us. Children and adults are encouraged not only to donate extra candy but to bring handwritten letters and cards for the troops overseas. Help us beat last year’s record of 5260 pounds and bring smiles to countless soldiers!

 

If your school or organization would like to participate, please let us know. Donations for the Candy Drive will be happily accepted from now until Friday, November 8th at the Wellesley Dental Group on 5 Seaward Rd in Wellesley. We request that all donations be dropped off during business hours: Monday through Thursday from 8am to 5pm. From our office in Wellesley, all the candy and letters will be shipped overseas to the soldiers via CarePacks, a non-profit organization - Get more info here.

 

Also, check us out on Boston.com, Wellesley Weston, and Patch!

Candy Drive Flyer

November 1st, 2013

wellesleycommunitydrive

Candy Drive Kick-Off Halloween Party!

November 1st, 2013

[gallery ids="5749,5743,5744,5745,5746,5747,5748,5750,5751,5752,5753,5755,5756,5757,5758,5759,5760,5761,5765"]

 

Thank you everyone who joined us for our Halloween Costume Party to kick-off our 6th Annual Candy Drive.

The Day After Halloween: What To Do With the Candy?

November 1st, 2013

candy

 

After a night of trick-or-treating, children are more than excited to dig in and eat their hard-earned treats. Parents may think that the days following Halloween is when they have to be more lenient about the amount of candy their children eat, but pediatric dentists urge parents to pay closer attention to their teeth and the candy they are consuming.

 

Children are receiving a variety of different candies, and dentists recommend avoiding sticky or liquid candies, which tend to stick onto children’s teeth. Individuals may ask whether there is a better alternative than these candies, but it is hard to give a solid answer. Candies are high in sugar content, providing the bacteria in the oral cavity with plenty of food. This ultimately increases the production of acid via bacteria, which leads to a higher risk of tooth decay and cavities. When looking through children’s basket of candy, here are a few candies that tend to be less harmful for teeth:

 

1. Sugar-free candy and gum with xylitol: these candies do not continue sugar, which is the primary source of food for bacteria; gum and candy has the potential to prevent tooth decay by increasing saliva and rinsing sugars and acids in the oral cavity

 

2. Even though powdery candy is packed with sugar, powder tends to dissolve quickly and is less likely to stick to teeth

 

3. Chocolate: chocolate also dissolves relatively quickly in the mouth; however, try to stay away from chocolate containing caramel and nuts, which are substances that can easily stick to teeth

 

Halloween can be a treacherous time for teeth, but there are also many ways to help children prevent tooth decay. Be sure to monitor the amount of candy that a child is consuming. After eating the candy, it is important to enforce proper brushing. Make sure that sticky candies have been brushed off and removed for tooth surfaces. A toothpaste containing fluoride can also keep teeth strong, protecting them from cavities. 30 seconds of brushing should be allotted to each quadrant, with a total of 2 minutes of brushing. Going in the small crevices between teeth is just as important, ensuring that there is no sugary residue for bacteria to consume and produce acid.

 

Holidays are always a fun time, but be sure to help your child practice good oral hygiene! If you have any more questions, feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group; they will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com

 

Please donate all excess Halloween candy and handwritten notes to be sent to the troops overseas in their care packages along with oral hygiene supplies.

To get more information click here.

 

 

References:

 

http://www.alligator.org/news/campus/article_b5a3d2f6-3b99-11e3-a7f2-0019bb2963f4.html

 

http://kidshealth.org/kid/stay_healthy/body/teeth_care.html

 

http://www.dentistryiq.com/articles/2013/10/halloween-candy-eating-tips-from-dentists.html

 

Is the Future of Dental Implants Found In Diamonds or Titanium?

October 25th, 2013

 

 

diamond

 

It may be strange to think that a precious jewel can aid in the field of dentistry. Researchers at UCLA have been looking into diamonds and if they do have a place in creating better dental implants for patients. These researchers are focusing on nanodiamonds, which are made through conventional mining and refining operations and are definitely called “nano” for a reason; they come out to be approximately four to five nanometers in diameters, resembling miniature soccer balls. The UCLA researchers enlisted the help of the UCLA School of Dentistry, the UCLA Department of Bioengineering, Northwestern University, and even the NanoCarbon Research Institute in Japan to help come up with innovative ways to implement these nanodiamonds in dentistry. Their research has led them to believe that these nanodiamonds can improve bone growth and has the potential to counteract osteonecrosis, a disease marked by bone breakdown due to reduce blood flow.

 

Osteonecrosis can affect various parts of the body, but when this disease affects the joints in the jaw, it can keep people from eating and speaking properly, even restricting or impeding movement. What makes matters worse is that when osteonecrosis occurs near implants, including teeth or prosthetic joints, these implants loosen and can eventually fall out. These dental implant failures lead to additional procedures, which can not only be painful, but can also become very expensive.

 

These issues surrounding dental implants led the team at UCLA to conduct a study that would reveal whether nanodiamonds would be a viable solution. Conducted by Dr. Dean Ho, a professor of oral biology and medicine at the UCLA School of Dentistry, and his team used the nonadiamonds to deliver proteins responsible for bone growth. Their results indicated that nanodiamonds have the uncanny ability to bind rapidly the essential proteins and growth factors. The surface properties of these diamonds allow for a slower delivery of these proteins, which researchers believe contribute to a longer period of treatment of the affected area in the oral cavity. What’s more is that these nanodiamonds can be inserted in to patients in a non-invasive way, through either an injection or an oral rinsing.

 

Nanodiamonds are not only the technology that researchers are pursuing to improve. On the other side of the world, researchers in Japan and China have been revisiting the essential components of titanium, which contains alloys that are very commonly used in orthopedic implants. Because of its reliable mechanical and chemical properties, along with its biocompatible and corrosion resistant nature, titanium has been the go-to product to use in dental implant procedures. However, one of the drawbacks that titanium faces is its lack of ability to bond directly to living bone. Researchers have found that calcium phosphate (CaP) and collagen are main components of natural bone; these scientists believe that a composite of both of these components can be used to effectively coat titanium implants. The study they published in the journal of Science and Technology of Advanced Material showed that when titanium implants were coated with CaP gel and inserted into the thigh bone of rabbit, within four and eight weeks, the authors noticed that there was significantly more new bone on the surface of the titanium implants that had been covered with the CaP gel. These coated implants were also able to bond directly to the bone, without needing an intervening soft tissue layer. The researchers believe that this innovative CaP and collagen composite can play an important role in improving dental implants.

 

Both results found for nanodiamonds and titanium prove to be exciting news in field of Periodonistry and even in the medical world as a whole. These nanodiamonds may possibly revolutionize dental implants, allowing them to be longer lasting and effective, while this the new CaP and collagen coating and greatly improve the use of titanium. 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

 

References:

 

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/09/130918102002.htm

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131003142214.htm

http://newsroom.ucla.edu/portal/ucla/nanodiamond-encrusted-teeth-248066.aspx

http://news.sciencemag.org/health/2011/03/nanodiamonds-could-be-cancer-patients-best-friend

http://www.abcnetspace.com/2013/08/how-diamonds-are-shaping-technology.html to read more about Diamond Technology!

 

 

 

 

Feeling Good About 5260 lbs!

October 17th, 2013

Candy DriveDid you know that Wellesley Dental Group gathered 5,260 pounds of candy last year? What exactly does that mean? Our friend Janice Bogasky, President of  Women's Business Group,  shared that information with us.

5260 pounds x 16 ounces/pound =  84,160 ounces That is equivalent to 84,160 mini-chocolate (1 oz) candy bars.
84,160 ounces x 152 calories/ounce (calories in 1 ounce of milk chocolate)  = 12,792,320 calories!
12,792,320 calories divided by 3,500 calories/pound (extra calories consumed  to gain a pound of weight) = 3,655 pounds of weight gain were in that U-Haul!!

Just think about all the weight gain we all helped prevent during last year's endeavors! We are looking to make things even bigger and better this year. So please click here to read more about our Candy Drive.

If you are a school or organization and would like to participate please call (781)237-9071 or email smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com

 

 

6th Annual Candy Drive: Sending Some Sweetness Overseas!

September 24th, 2013

SENDING SOME SWEETNESS OVERSEAS! It's that time of the year again. We just sent our press release out!
Wellesley Dental Group organizes 6th annual community-wide Candy Drive

WELLESLEY, MASS. (Sept. 24, 2013) – It all started with local dentists, Drs. Ali & Ali, asking their young patients to donate their excessive Halloween candy in exchange for $1 to protect their teeth. Today, this gesture has grown into a community-wide effort involving schools, the police department, local organizations, retailers and neighboring towns who collect and donate extra Halloween candy and write notes of thanks to U.S. troops overseas.

“Our community is too generous. Kids come home with pillowcases full of candy. We’re all for celebrating the holiday, but no one needs that much candy,” said Dr. Femina Ali, of Wellesley Dental Group. “But for our troops, who are so far away, M&Ms and the handwritten cards children send are a little treat that remind them of home.”

Each year the drive gets bigger and bigger. Last year, Wellesley Dental Group collected a “wall of candy which weighed 5260 pounds,” explains Dr. Ali. “This year we’ll kick-off the drive with a Costume party on the day before Halloween on October 30th from 4-6 p.m. at our office with food, games, prizes and toothbrushes. Everyone is welcome.”

Wellesley Dental Group will accept candy donations from Nov. 1 through Nov. 8 and hold a press event on Nov. 8th at 10 a.m., which is open to the community, before they send the candy off in a U-Haul. CarePacks, a non-profit organization that sends care packages to troops overseas, will package up the candy and cards.

About Wellesley Dental Group
Established in 1997 by Drs. Femina and Ejaz Ali, Wellesley Dental is a family-run dental practice that provides state-of-the-art, high quality oral care in a friendly and caring environment. For more information, visit http://www.wellesleydentalgroup.com/

# # #

To schedule a candy drop-off between November 1 and November 8 at Wellesley Dental Group, located at 5 Seaward Road in Wellesley, Mass., please call 781.237.9071 or e-mail smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com

Reliving My Babson Experience!

September 4th, 2013

It was nostalgic to be at Babson on Friday welcoming new families at the family orientation desk. I remember the first day my son Zann went to Babson. Like all other parents I had many thoughts... will he get enough food, will he manage his time wisely, will he get into any bad habits, is he getting too much independence, will he stay focused, will he stay connected? I am sure everyone feels some level of anxiety when dropping their kids off to college. Since I was only dropping him a mile down the road I figured I would be okay, however, it was far from the truth. Dropping your child at the dorm for the first time can make anyone emotional, including me.

Every year, I  volunteer at the Babson orientation because I remember that feeling. I want to be able to provide support and ease any anxieties for the families who perhaps may be dropping their kids off from the next town over or across the world. That parental feeling stays the same irrespective of the distance traveled to drop the kids.

This past Friday a family at the orientation was very anxious, especially the mother. I reassured her that her son is in a good place and validated her feelings. I know, I was there a few years ago. I let her know that Babson is a community and that her son will be well taken care of. Not only will he be getting a world class education,but speaking from experience, Babson will also make a man out of him.

About two hours later I saw the same family and this time the mom was smiling. I commented on it and her husband was quick to add "You made her happy!" (Previous to meeting me she had been very anxious and was crying). This just made my day. The comfort and joy we can give to others is perhaps the most fulfilling experience known to mankind. I am so thankful that Babson had invited me to be a part of this special event.

The story doesn't end here. This mother called me a day later with some questions and somehow we ended up having the family over for dinner at our home. Babson is truly a big family... and a real community. We are happy to keep the Babson tradition going.

 

http://wellesleydentalgroup.com/blog/?p=2293

Wellesley's Back to School Drive

July 12th, 2013

Wellesley Dental Group is joining hands with Cradles to Crayons for their ‘Ready For School Drive.’ Let's help make the first day of school an exciting endeavor for the children in need. It can be a source of anxiety for kids not having the appropriate school items, and ultimately not fitting in with their peers. Our goal is to raise $5000 from our community efforts so that in-need children can have all the school essentials prior to starting classes. We want every child to feel prepared and confident when school starts and together we can make that happen. Cradles to Crayons *Ready for School* program focuses on distributing the school essentials children deserve and need to arrive at school ready. Their “KidPacks”are filled with clothing, shoes, books, and a brand new backpacks. Every dollar makes a difference and with our community’s help we can reach our goal.

Wellesley Dental Group is asking the community to join hands in our fundraising efforts for Cradles to Crayons. To show our appreciation, we will give you a credit towards our state-of-the-art whitening services in the amount matching to your donation.

Wellesley Dental Group is a permanent drop-off location for Cradles to Crayons.

Please Donate generously; the smile you give to others shines back on you.

Thank you for your support! Cradles to Crayons is a registered 501 (c)(3) charity and the full amount of your donation is tax deductible.

https://cradlestocrayons.fundraise.com/wellesley-dental-group

http://www.cradlestocrayons.org/

 

Mouth Sores: How to Differentiate and Alleviate

July 10th, 2013

As you are getting dressed for a night out, you notice a tingling sensation near your lips. One glance in the mirror reveals an unsightly sore forming. Is it a cold sore or a canker sore?

Canker sores also occur in the mouth, but unlike cold sores, they are not contagious. But canker sores can also be triggered by stress, genetics, trauma, medications, menstruation, food allergies, or even unrelated medical problems. To treat canker sores, one can acquire over-the-counter oral anesthetics. With a visit to a dentist, a treatment plan can be instigated for more serious outbreaks.

Cold sores are usually found to be small, clear fluid-filled blisters that form near the mouth, which are caused by herpes simplex virus-1 (HSV-1). These blisters usually do not show up on the lips, instead, they are found inside the mouth, on the face, or even inside the nose. In most cases, these sores do not last for more than two weeks; however one should be cautious. Sores are very contagious and are prone to come back due to stress, sunlight, fever, or illness. With the onset of a cold sore, one can apply ice cubes to the sores to help relieve pain. Cold sores can be treated with topical medication, which can prevent the sore from becoming more severe. Antiviral medication can also be used for serious cases.

Academy of General Dentistry ran clinical studies that revealed that students that are surrounded by a high stress environment are more likely to have canker sores or cold sores. It was found that after graduation, when stress levels have come down, sores become less prevalent as well. But sometimes it may be difficult to escape stressful situations. In this case, a natural soothing gel can do the trick. For more than 2,000 years, the aloe vera plant has become a great alternative treatment for a whole host of oral health problems, including sores, lichen planus and gingivitis. The Academy of Dentistry’s clinical, peer-reviewed journal found that the gel from the aloe has the able to cure canker sores and cold sores, both inside and outside of the mouth.

Mouth sores can be a hassle, but there are various treatments to alleviate their symptoms. 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.

References:

http://kidshealth.org/teen/your_body/skin_stuff/cold_sores.html
http://kidshealth.org/teen/diseases_conditions/mouth/canker.html
http://www.agd.org/public/OralHealthFacts/files/FS_MouthSores.pdf

Wellesley Parade and Picnic

May 23rd, 2013

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Wellesley’s Wonderful Weekend was once again truly wonderful—what an amazing experience to celebrate another year of this great community tradition!

Thank you to the Wellesley Celebrations Committee for organizing such wonderful events for the community and the volunteers who support it. We also want to thank the Wellesley Police Department for not only keeping everyone safe this weekend but for also representing our town in the OneFund by selling BostonStrong t-shirts and donating proceeds to those who were affected by the recent Boston Marathon tragedy.

Our tractor float caught a lot of attention this year! It was all thanks to the little smile ambassadors we had on board helping our team promote healthy, happy smiles. The fun continued later at the picnic, where the Wellesley Dental Group tent was a real party! We had face painting and feather extensions, guest appearances from the Tooth Fairy and Chuckles the Dinosaur, and lots of treats for all our young smile ambassadors! Even a little rain didn't dampen the community spirit, and the night came to a perfect end with some truly spectacular fireworks. We can’t wait to sponsor them again next year!

Spring sniffles can lead to poor oral health

May 17th, 2013

After a long winter, spring can literally be a breath of fresh air. However, for some, spring may mean going through countless tissue boxes. Seasonal allergies can mean lots of sneezing, and a lot of congestion, which is usually coupled with “mouth breathing.” While this may seem harmless, a clinical study published in General Dentistry pointed out that there can also be oral health repercussions to mouth breathing.

 

Mouth breathing, also known as upper airway obstruction, has been shown to cause abnormal facial and dental development, including long, narrow faces and mouths, and gummy smiles. Mouth breathing can lead to lack of saliva in the mouth. Saliva is essential for the reduction of acid and bacteria in the mouth, which causes individuals who lack saliva to end up with gingivitis. Crooked teeth can also be caused by an upper airway obstruction due to poor position of the tongue. Mouth breathers tend to rest their tongue on the roof of their mouths, causing cheek, muscles to relax and rest on the upper teeth. This causes the upper jaw to become more narrow leading to crooked teeth down the line. This condition can lead to poor sleeping habits, and can lead to poor oxygen concentration in the blood stream, resulting in possible high blood pressure-related conditions. Children who suffer from mouth breathing usually do not get enough rest, leading to tiredness throughout the day and lack of concentration on academics.

 

But no fear! There are possible treatments for mouth breathing, and it is very beneficial to discover this condition early on.  A dentist is able to look for mouth breathing symptoms, including dry, cracked lips, dry mouth, bad breath, snoring and daytime fatigue. Swollen tonsils are also known to be a prominent symptom of this disease. If there is the presence of inflamed tonsils, they can be surgically removed by an ear-nose-throat (ENT) specialist. If one has narrow face and mouth, dentists are able to use expansion appliances to aid in the widening of sinuses and the opening of nasal airway passages. After surgery and orthodontic treatment, patients have been shown to improve in behavior, energy level, academic performance, and peer acceptance.

 

If you believe that you are a mouth breather, be sure to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group; they will be happy to answer your questionsContact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment and consultation.

References:

 

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/04/100406125714.htm

 

http://www.webmd.com/allergies/video/josephson-mouth-breathing

 

 

We couldn't have done it without you!

May 10th, 2013

Drs. Ali & Ali of Wellesley Dental Group want to thank the community for the wonderful turnout as they conclude their two-week long fundraiser for the One Fund Boston. The fundraiser was held from April 29th through May 10th. Inspired by the phrase, Boston Strong, they wanted to give the community a way to show strength through smiling. As "Smile Ambassadors" their mission was quite clear: give supporters a beautiful smile when they do good for the community. They donated 100% of all proceeds from teeth whitening treatments.
Drs. Ali & Ali are incredibly thankful to their community for supporting this remarkable cause, helping the victims of April 15th's Marathon Monday bombings. Smiling together, we are all Boston Strong.

Dental Implants: a Great Alternative to Replacing Missing Teeth

May 7th, 2013

If you have missing teeth, dentures are just not comfortable enough, or if you want to keep tooth structure intact, dental implants may be the way to go.

Implants have been considered one of the biggest breakthroughs in dentistry within the past 40 years and have provided an innovative alternative when it comes to replacing missing teeth. Dental implants are made from titanium and other materials that are very compatible with the human body. The titanium implant fuses with the jawbone and acts as a sturdy anchor for the replacement teeth. It is also shaped and colored to blend right in with the rest of your pearly whites.

When going through the process of receiving dental implants, there are three major phases one goes through.

1. The titanium implant is surgically placed into the patient’s jawbone. During this time, dentists recommend that patients should consume soft or cold foods and warm soup during the healing process following the surgery.

2. Next comes the period where the bond surrounding the implants begins the healing process, known as osseointegration. Eventually, the implant combines with the bond and forms a sturdy base for the replacement tooth. This integration usually takes several months to occur.

3. The final step is the placement of the new artificial tooth. For a single tooth, a dentist would customize a dental crown that will serve as the replacement. This crown is picked just so that its color, shape, and size will fit perfectly with the surrounding teeth. Because it takes some time to create this, the dentist will make a temporary crown, bridge or denture in the meantime; this will allow the patient to still be able to eat and speak normally until the permanent replacement tooth is ready.

If you believe that dental implants may be the right option for you, Drs. Ali & Ali and their team at Wellesley Dental Group will be very happy to discuss possible procedures that can be done. Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up a consultation!

 

References:

MouthHealthy.org

The American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons

Make your grin pearly white for a good cause!

May 7th, 2013

Wellesley Dental Group’s teeth whitening fundraiser is still running at full speed. We’d like to dedicate this post to all those who have already donated to our One Fund fundraiser!  In solidarity with those affected by last month’s Boston Marathon bombings, Drs. Ali & Ali thank you from the bottom of their hearts for the steady influx of donations pouring in from all corners of the community. With your help, we’ve been making a huge impact on the physical and mental well-being of our community. It’s so inspiring to see how quickly our neighborhood has risen to the challenge, and to know that we are taking care of our own. Thank you for setting such an incredible example for the rest of us; together we are Boston Strong!

As you may have heard, Drs. Ali & Ali are taking great strides to rally our community together and help our neighbors in need. Until May 10th, Wellesley Dental Group will be donating 100% of the proceeds from all whitening treatments to Boston’s One Fund.  If you haven’t heard about this great cause, it’s time to get involved!

The Wellesley Dental Group is offering two whitening options: the Sinsational treatment, in which your smile is brightened by a few shades, and the Custom Home Whitening treatment, in which Dr. Ali creates custom whitening trays tailored specifically to your needs. The suggested minimum donations are $199 and $550, respectively, and will be donated directly to help the marathon victims and their loved ones. We invite you to come in for a free consultation to explore the different options and decide which works best for you. Please call us at (781) 237-9071 or email smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to schedule an appointment today! For more information about this event, click here.  Our office is open this week Monday-Friday from 8 am to 5 pm, at 5 Seward Road in Wellesley.

Remember, this is the final week of the fundraiser, so if you've been thinking that your smile could use a makeover, now is the time to act! A new smile, a new YOU, and a re-newed Boston is exactly what our city needs to regain its footing. Now that spring is upon us, what better way to rejuvenate your oral health, all the while rebuilding the health and unity of our community. And again, to those who have already made a difference, thank you SO much for your continued support!

Ouch, I Just Chipped My Tooth!

May 2nd, 2013

You finally get some time to yourself and decide to have a quick snack. You make a grab for your favorite mixed nut bar and take a big bite. All of a sudden, something doesn't feel right in your mouth. You realize those almonds that you just munched left you with a chipped tooth.

Even though the enamel that covers teeth is considered the hardest, most mineralized tissue in the body, it may not be able to hold up against a blow to the face or even a hard bite, which can easily cause a broken or chipped tooth. If you find yourself in this situation, don’t panic! There are many ways your dentist can help out!

  • Once a broken or chipped tooth is broken, be sure to make an appointment with your dentist before the tooth is damaged further or becomes infected. Before the appointment, here are some tips to ease the pain:
  • If the tooth is painful, take acetaminophen, such as Tylenol, or other over-the-counter pain relievers. Rinsing with salt water can keep you less susceptible to infection.
  • If the chipped area is sharp or jagged, stick a piece of wax or sugarless gum to keep from cutting the tongue or other areas inside the mouth.
  • Be sure to eat soft foods and avoid using the chipped or broken tooth.

Once it comes time to treating the tooth, it will depend on the severity of the damage. If only a small piece of enamel is broken off, the dentist may be able to fix it within one visit. The tooth may only need a filling or bonding, which is a procedure in which the dentist will shape a tooth-colored resin to look like a natural tooth.

If it is badly broken, the tooth can be covered with a crown, which is a tooth shaped cap made to protect the tooth and improve its appearance. Permanent crowns can either be made from metal, porcelain fused to metal, all resin, or all ceramic, each with their own pluses. Metal crowns are known to be the strongest, however, porcelain and resin crowns are more aesthetically pleasing and can be made to look more like the original tooth.

When a front tooth is broken, dentists can insert a dental veneer, which is a thin shell of tooth-colored porcelain or resin composite material. The veneer will make teeth look brand new, whole and healthy again. However, if a tooth chip is large enough to expose the center of the tooth, also know as the pulp, bacteria can easily infect this area. Root Canal therapy may be necessary, which involves taking out the dead pulp, cleaning the root canal, and then finally sealing it.

If you find you have a cracked tooth, it would be a good idea to chat with your dentist about Cracked Tooth Syndrome, which is when one has cracks either under the gum, or cracks too small to see on x-rays. Generally, symptoms are heat/cold sensitivity, pain that comes and goes (unlike a cavity), and occasionally, pus under the gum.

If you believe that you have chipped or broken your tooth, Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group will be happy to answer your questions about ways to go about fixing the tooth. Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment and consultation.

 

Source:

Colgate

 

 

Thank you - Smile Ambassadors at Sprague School

May 1st, 2013

 

On May 1st, Dr. Femina Ali visited Sprague School in Wellesley for their 5th Grade Career Day. Going not only as a dentist but a Smile Ambassador, she was so thrilled to share her passions and listen to the 5th graders' questions. The Career Day is a wonderful yearly event where kids can learn more about what they want to be when they grow up, whether their favorite hobbies can become their careers, even learn about what sort of inspiration can guide them towards their dream job.  Dr. Femina Ali commemorated this special occasion by handing out certificates to the kids, making them Smile Ambassadors for their communities, families, and beyond. Whatever career path these children will take down the road, they will always be Smile Ambassadors.

Also joining Dr. Ali were Christopher Price, sports columnist at the Boston Globe, Lisa Sewall, chef and restaurant owner of Lineage, Dr. Antonietta Orlandi, Wellesley-Natick Animal Hospital veterinarian, Katie Swenson, architect for Enterprise Community Partners, Prepresentative Alice Peisch of the 14th Norfolk District, and Dr. David Lussier, superintendent of schools in Wellesley.

Starting is easy, all it takes is a smile!

Dr. Femina Ali had the privilege of talking with the students about how she started on her journey to be a Smile Ambassador. "In my office, I'm a dentist. Outside, I am a Smile Ambassador... It all started with my family." Sharing smiles at home, making those you love happy is the first step. Dr. Femina Ali has always loved making people smile. She "fixes" smiles as a dentist and "spreads" them through her community volunteering.

She also had a few key take-home message she hopes her young "Smile Ambassadors" will hold close to heart:

  • The smiles you share with others will shine back on you.
  • Take care of your smile by brushing and flossing every day!
  • Being a Smile Ambassador can be hard, however, it's usually the most challenging things that are the most rewarding.
  • A Smile Ambassador spreads smiles not only at home, but in the classroom, community, and everywhere he or she goes.

Dr. Femina Ali cannot wait to visit Sprague School again and hopes that her new Smile Ambassadors will join her in the future to spread smiles in and around their beautiful town of Wellesley. After this amazing day, she realizes that, "I learned something, too, today, while I was eating with the students. Posted in the cafeteria was this quote by James Barrie, "Always try to be a little kinder than necessary," and it really struck me. I can see this quote reflected in everything that Sprague School does and in the student, who I know, irrespective of what they choose to do, will be successful Smile Ambassadors."

She sends a big Thank You to Sprague for this incredible honor of helping to shape the lives of these brilliant students. She would also like to thank Dr. Goodwin, Kathryn Ashraf, and Laura Brown-MacKinnon as well as all other committee members and parents without whom this wouldn't have been possible.

 

 

Smiling because we’re Boston strong - raising money for One Fund

April 25th, 2013

Get your pearly whites even whiter for a great cause! Wellesley Dental Group is teaming up with the community to fund-raise for The One Fund, Boston to help those affected by the Marathon Monday tragedy on April 15th. Drs. Ali & Ali will be donating 100% of all proceeds gathered from whitening treatments to the Fund. They are inviting Wellesley and its surrounding communities to stop by, boost smiles, and donate to this important cause.

From April 29th to May 10th, Wellesley Dental Group will be fundraising for The One Fund. Make an appointment by calling (781) 237-9071 or emailing smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com. The office is located at 5 Seaward Road in Wellesley.

The whitening treatments offered vary from Sinsational whitening, which boosts the smile by a few shades to custom home whitening, in which Dr. Ali creates whitening trays. The suggested minimum donation for the Sinsational whitening is $199 and is $550 for the custom home whitening. Feel free to make an appointment for a free consultation prior to deciding on which whitening option is best for you.

Join Wellesley Dental Group and smile in the face of what descended upon the community. Show how strong Boston truly is by sharing a newly radiant smile that gives hope to those in need. In the words of Mayor Menino, “We are one Boston. We are one community. As always, we will come together to help those most in need. And in the end, we will all be better for it.”

 

 

Proud Sponsors of...

April 25th, 2013

This year, the Wellesley Celebration's Committee is putting on the largest annual town gathering: Wellesley's Wonderful Weekend. On May 18th-19th, thousands of Wellesley residents and friends will attend the celebratory events, parade and fireworks. Wellesley Dental Group, true to their mission of being Smile Ambassadors, will once again be putting a smile on the whole town. This year, Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team of WDG are co-sponsors of the most amazing fireworks spectacle of the year!

Be sure to like the Wellesley Celebrations Committee on Facebook to stay up to date with the parade, weekend festivals, open house events, and more.

Wellesley Dental Group is inviting the community to join them in the parade and picnic. The parade will take place from 1 pm to 3 pm on May 19th and the picnic will follow at 5. The firework show we've all been waiting for will commence at dusk.

This year, Wellesley Dental Group will be in the parade on a huge tractor! Young children and the young at heart are invited to sign up to ride in the parade float. To sign up, please call at (781) 237-9071, email at smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com, or stop by their office at 5 Seaward Rd. They will be  passing out toothbrushes as they walking through the parade, spreading a message of oral health awareness.

At the picnic in the park, starting at 5 pm, stop by the Wellesley Dental Group tent to get one-on-one brushing lessons for young ones and participate in more fun activities for all ages. Balloons will be handed out as well as some special prizes.

This has become one of WDG's favorite annual town events as it speaks to their deep commitment to the community. For last year's parade video, click here!

The 2013 Schedule is as follows:

Saturday - May 4th

11:00a.m. - 3:00p.m. Wellesley Kitchen Tour 2013* — Wellesley Hills Junior Woman's Club
Tickets sold @ Wellesley Roche Bros or online at www.whjwc.org

Friday - May 17th

3:00p.m. - 6:00p.m. Annual Hunnewell Fun Fair* — Hunnewell School PTO
Hunnewell Elementary School, 28 Cameron Street, Rides, games, crafts

Saturday - May 18th

7:00a.m.—2:30p.m. Pancake Festival* at the Wellesley Middle School — Rotary Club of Wellesley
7:00a.m.—2:30p.m. Free Eye Exams at the Needham Lions Club Eye Mobile at the Wellesley Middle School — Needham Lions Club
Saturday—Sunday
(decamp after parade)
18th Century Military Encampment at Town Hall Grounds
The Royal Irish Artillery, Tours all day, Cannon Firing on the half hour on Saturday
All Weekend Display of Korean War Materials at the Wellesley Free Library
530 Washington Street
9:00a.m.—10:00a.m. Town Forest Walk — Wellesley Trails Committee
Longfellow Pond parking lot (left side of Oakland Street 0.9 miles south of Rt. 9)
9:00a.m.—10:30a.m. Guided Walk “How Transportation Shaped Wellesley” Wellesley Historical Society
Dadmun/McNamara House, 229 Washington Street (East corner of Route 9)
9:00a.m.—3:00p.m. Wellesley Community Center Wheels of Wellesley
219 Washington Street 

Exotic and Antique Cars, Motorcycles, and Bicycles

9:00a.m.—3:00p.m. Art in the Park — Wellesley Community Art Project & Wellesley Women Artisans
Simon’s  Park (Corner of Washington & Brook Street, left of the Library)
10:00a.m.—11:30a.m. Dog Contest*
Wellesley Board of Health, & Wellesley Animal Control
Warren School Field, 90 Washington Street (Route 16)   

Prizes awarded in various categories including "shaggiest", "best grooomed", "best tricks", "wiggliest", and many more!

11:00a.m.— 3:00p.m. Open House at Wellesley Police Station 485 Washington Street
11:00a.m.— 3:00p.m. Open House at Wellesley Main Fire Station #2 457 Worcester Street (Route 9)
11:00a.m.— 3:00p.m. Open House at Wellesley Municipal Light Plant — 2 Municipal Way (455 Worcester Street, Route 9)
11:00a.m.— 3:00p.m. Open House at Wellesley Department of Public Works — 20 Municipal Way (455 Worcester Street, Route 9)
1:00p.m. — 3:00p.m. Build Your Own Woodland Troll & Fairy House Wellesley Conservation Council
Cochituate Aqueduct, Russell Road / Kendall Road (for elementary school kids)
4:00p.m. Veterans’ Ecumenical Memorial Mass at Saint Paul Church
Wellesley Veterans’ Council
502 Washington Street

Sunday - May 19th

9:00a.m.—3:30p.m. Gardeners' Fair at Elm Bank Mass Horticultural Society
Elm Bank Horticulture Center, 900 Washington Street
1:00p.m.—3:00p.m. 45th Annual Wellesley Veterans’ Parade
2013 Theme: 60th Anniversary of the end of the Korean War
Wellesley Celebrations’ Committee 

Bring a food item to the parade for the Wellesley Food Pantry - Look for the World of Wellesley (WOW) Float

The parade starts at the intersection of Route 16 (Washington Street) and Route 9 and continues westbound along Route 16 to Wellesley Square. The reviewing stand is in Wellesley Square.

4:00p.m.—5:30p.m. Grace Knight Babson Fund for Religious Education — 54rd Annual Program
Knight Auditorium, Babson College Campus, Wellesley Avenue
5:00p.m. — DUSK Picnic in the Park at Hunnewell Field
Food*, drinks*,kid’s rides*, crafts, games & other fun
Food by Charles River Rotary and others
6:30p.m. Main Attraction Concert for Wellesley at Hunnewell Field
Featuring the Reminisants
DUSK Fireworks —the Biggest Ever! at Hunnewell Field
Sponsors: Roche Brothers/Sudbury Farms and Wellesley Dental Group, Drs Ali and Ali
*Please note, asterisk indicates a small fee may be charged. 

Good Oral Health Leads to a Healthier You!

April 24th, 2013

While keeping up with brushing and flossing may seem to be a trivial habit that only impacts the oral cavity, it is important to note that good dental hygiene not only affects the conditions inside the mouth, but also plays a major role in determining the health of various aspects of the body. Here some examples of how lack of proper dental care can lead to detrimental effects in the body.

Diabetes

As inflammation starts up in the mouth, studies have shown that this weakens the body’s ability to control blood sugar. Due to the lack of insulin, which is the hormone that converts sugar into energy, people who struggle with diabetes have trouble processing sugar. Diabetics who have periodontal disease are further impaired because inflammation hinders the body ability to use insulin. Research has also demonstrated that high blood sugar enables infections to worsen. However, because of this gum disease-diabetes relationship, keeping up with good oral hygiene can keep diabetes under control.

Heart Disease

Research has shown that up to 91% of patients with heart disease have gum disease, while 66% of people without heart disease have gum disease. Both heart disease and periodontitis share various risk factors, including smoking, unhealthy diet, and excess weight. Some researchers also suggest that periodontitis may play a direct role in raising the risk for heart disease. It is thought that inflammation in the mouth also leads to inflammation in the blood vessels, which can heighten the risk of heart attack. Inflamed blood vessels restrict blood travel between the heart and the rest of the body, which ultimately raises blood pressure.

Atherosclerosis

Studies also delved into how periodontitis affects arterial walls. Atherosclerosis is a condition where fatty material collects within arteries, causing these vessels to become narrower. The build up of fatty material leads to many cardiovascular problems, including heart attacks, angina (chest pains), and even stroke. It has been found that the bacteria that enters and grows in the mouth were the same bacteria found in the atherosclerotic plaques that were clogging patients’ arteries.

Pregnancy

The American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology published a study that found a relationship between the use of non-alcohol antimicrobial mouth rinse in pregnant women and the decreased rate of premature deliveries. Researchers have found that inflammation caused by gum disease has the potential of resulting in premature birth. Early deliveries can result in babies having low birth weight or even various health problems, including heart conditions and learning disorders. But good news: the study showed that pregnant women who rinse twice with mouthwash on a daily basis are 25% less likely to deliver early.

Respiratory Disease

There is strong evidence indicating that poor oral hygiene is a contributing factor to chronic lower respiratory diseases. Research suggests that bacteria developed from gum disease can travel through airways into the lungs, which may potentially lead to respiratory illnesses such as pneumonia. Poor dental health may worsen one’s conditions if one is a smoker, cancer patient, or is aging.  To protect the respiratory system, it is important to reduce the growth of bacteria and the development of plaque in one’s mouth to prevent inflammation in the airways and the worsening of other breathing problems.

Erectile Dysfunction

A Turkish study revealed evidence that lack of oral hygiene can have consequences on your sex life. It was found that men in their 30s who were suffering from severe periodontal disease were 3 times more likely to suffer from erection problems than were those who did not have gum disease. Erectile dysfunction and chronic periodontitis in humans also have similar risk factors, including age, smoking, diabetes and coronary artery disease.

Poor dental care has shown to result in negative impact on one’s overall health, but no fear! Continued efforts to maintain a healthy smile has been shown to improve one’s health in different parts of the body.

If you have any concerns, Drs. Ali & Ali and their team at Wellesley Dental Group will be very happy to answer your questions. Contact us today at 781-237-9071 orsmile@wellesleydentalgroup.com!

 

References:

WebMD

Huffington Post

USNews

American Heart Association Journals

United Concordia

 

Swishing with the best of them

April 19th, 2013

The American Dental Association (ADA) has deemed mouth rinses as a solution to halitosis and a good preventive measure against tooth decay, plaque, and ultimately gingivitis. Mouthwashes contain various ingredients, including water, alcohol, cleansing agents, flavoring compounds and color agents. The active ingredients that are responsible are tackling issues like bad breath and tooth vary depending on the type of mouth rinse, which can been categorized in four main groups.

  • Antimicrobial agents attack oral bacteria, bringing down the prevalence of plaque, controlling the progression of gingivitis, and keeping bad breath at bay.
  • Fluoride help reduce the tooth decay found on tooth enamel and strengths teeth, keeping them less susceptible to decay.
  • Astringent salts are temporary odor-reducing agents that cover up bad breath.
  • Odor neutralizers respond by chemically inactivating odor-causing compounds.

Researchers have found that antibacterial mouth rinses can make a difference in masking or eliminating bad breath.  It was shown that halitosis is caused by the foods that have been trapped in the crevices of the mouth. These remaining foods break down into sulfur compounds, which are accountable for the smell. In the studies conducted, mouthwashes containing ingredients such as chlorhexidine and cetylpyridinium were successful in getting rid of bad breath, while chlorine dioxide and zinc help take away bad smells through neutralization. Mouth rinses also have detoxing effects in the mouth, which can alleviate canker sores by controlling the amount of bacteria in the irritated site.

While mouth rinses have been shown to be beneficial in a whole host of ways, they do not go without some cons. While mouth rinses can soothe canker sores, high alcohol content in the mouthwash used can actually end up irritating canker sores. While mouthwashes are great for eliminating odors and preventing tooth decay, they are by no means a substitute for brushing and flossing. Individuals with poor oral hygiene cannot use mouth wash to mask poor health. There also has been much debate over whether alcohol-containing mouth rinses are connected with oral cancer. However, the American Dental Association has been extensively reviewing the effectiveness and safety of mouthwashes containing alcohol and has placed their seal of approval on some of these mouthwashes.

The take home message is that mouth rinses should always be used in conjunction with good hygiene, and it is always best to ask your dentists which mouthwash is more suitable and effective for you. If you have more concerns about this issue, Drs. Ali & Ali and their caring team at Wellesley Dental Group will be very happy to answer your questions. Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com!

 

References:

WebMD

Everyday Health.com

American Dental Association

 

Can I Stop Wearing Retainers Already?

April 18th, 2013

After a couple of year of having braces, getting them off is quite the relief. There are no more brackets to get tons of food stuck in; flossing becomes such a charm! Then why is there still a need to wear retainers? It’s already a hassle taking them off every meal, is it really necessary to wear it all the time?

A retainer is responsible for keeping teeth set in their new positions after wearing braces. While that seems rather intuitive, what many people forget is that the body continues to grow and change. This also includes the mouth, which can lead to teeth shifting. Although it may not seem like much; retainers ensure that the shifts that occur are controlled. The pressure from the lips and tongue can slightly cause your teeth to shift out of alignment. Even though your teeth may still look in perfect position after a couple days going without a retainer, it doesn’t mean they haven’t moved. If you continue to go without a retainer, your teeth will continue to move out of alignment, and a repeat of orthodontic treatment may be needed down the line.

After getting braces, your orthodontist will tell you how long and when to wear it. Keep in mind that this is specific to you! For example, someone else may have to wear them all day for three months, but you may only have to wear them only at night. Although it may easily slip your mind in the beginning of your regimen, it will soon become a habit. Your specific timetable will allow your teeth to further adjust to their position and maintain that beautiful smile you worked on for months, maybe even years!

Although they can be an annoyance, retainers are made to maintain the work braces have done for you. Continue to strive to make it a habit to wear retainers; you will definitely thank yourself years down the line!

At Wellesley Dental Group, we have Dr. Emad, who specializes in Orthodontics and Dr. Ali is a preferred provider of Invisalign. If you want to know more about how Invisalign can change your smile, go no further than our blog!

If you have any questions regarding retainers or would like to learn more about Invisalign and Orthodontics, Drs. Ali & Ali and their team at Wellesley Dental Group will be very happy to answer your questions. Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com!

 

References:

KidsHealth.org

WebMD

 

CEREC: restoration in one visit!

April 16th, 2013

[caption id="attachment_4539" align="alignright" width="270" caption="Image from CEREConline.com"][/caption]

With CEREC treatment, patients only need to make one trip to the dentist with a procedure that can be carried out within the hour. There is no need for impressions, cementations, and even time spent waiting for the crown to come back from the lab. Because a short period of time is needed, patients only need to go through one round of Novocain. CEREC also takes faster photographic images of the tooth needing the procedure, this greatly reduces the patient’s time exposed to harmful x-rays.

While it has been the standard to implement porcelain fused to metal crowns for posterior restoration that requires full-coverage, these crowns require an extensive loss of tooth structure, is proven to be an allergen for some, and also lacks in aesthetics. CEREC provides patients with beautiful porcelain moldings that bear an identical shade to that of the patient’s tooth enamel. Once these crowns are in the mouth, they are barely distinguishable from the rest of the teeth, giving a picture perfect smile. On top of that, porcelain has been shown to be completely safe and healthy in patients, and is also known to be more durable and comfortable.

If you believe a CEREC crown procedure is right for you, Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group will be happy to answer your questions about tooth restorations. Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment and consultation.

 

Sources:

CEREC Online

Feeling the burn

April 12th, 2013

The burning mouth syndrome (BMS) has been noted as a chronic and painful condition known by burning sensations in the tongue, lips, roof of the mouth, gums, insides of the cheeks, and also the back of the mouth or throat. While dentists are still puzzled by this condition, the burning mouth syndrome has shown to be seven times more frequent in women than in men. Studies have shown that, in general, those who have dealt with this syndrome are middle aged.

Symptoms that have been documented to be prominent for BMS includes a pain or burning sensation that starts out in the mornings, but progressively worsens throughout the day, eventually reaching its worst during the evenings. Some have reported to feel pain that continues to persist throughout the day and some even say that the pain comes in here and there.

Although the cause of BMS has not been fully uncovered, dentists have their hunches of what factors may be related to this burning sensation; here are just a few:

Nutritional deficiencies: individuals who lack proper amounts of iron, folate and vitamin B complex have be linked with the burning sensation in the mouth; to counter this effect, some dentists believe that supplementing with B vitamin’s and minerals such as zinc and iron my relieve some of the pain.

Dry mouth: those who experience dry mouth have also reported a burning sensation as well; to reduce dry mouth, it is recommended to continue to stay hydrated throughout the day to lessen the symptoms that comes with this condition.

Diabetes: diabetics are known to be more vulnerable when it comes to oral infections, which is a possible culprit to burning mouth sensations; diabetics should continue to be mindful of blood sugar levels as to prevent the start up of burning mouth and may potentially lessen the symptoms that are related to this condition.

Menopause: as stated earlier, dentists believe that women are more likely to suffer from BMS, and it’s been thought that menopause attributes to this reason. Hormonal changes are shown to trigger the burning sensation in middle-aged women; hormone replacement therapy has been shown to be effective in treating the burning sensation in certain patients.

While dentists continue to find appropriate methods to find a way to counter BMS, there are several tips that may relieve the burning sensation you may be experiencing:

  • Don’t use mouthwash that contains alcohol
  • Don’t use toothpaste that contains sodium lauryl sulfate
  • Keep away from alcoholic beverages
  • Keep away from beverages with high acidity (sodas, juices)
  • Continue to stay hydrated

If you believe that you are experiencing burning sensations in your mouth, it is important to visit your dentist to discuss the symptoms and possible reasons for why this condition started occurring. If you have more concerns about this issue, Drs. Ali & Ali and their team at Wellesley Dental Group will be very happy to answer your questions. Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com!

 

References:

Your Dentistry Guide

National Institute of Health

 

Supporting the Global Medical Brigades

April 10th, 2013

Wellesley College Student, Farah Mahmud, recently reached out to Drs. Ali & Ali, asking Wellesley Dental Group to show its support for the Global Medical Brigades, 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. The Brigades is the world’s largest student-led international relief organization. Students from Wellesley College are gathering essential medical equipment, supplies, and drugs for an upcoming trip to Honduras in the summer. We are so proud to support them in this endeavor and want to raise awareness.

Join us in giving back to this great cause! Call or email us for more information on the supplies they need at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com!

Feeling the need to give back and volunteer? The group is also looking for medical professionals to volunteer.

There is no time better than the present to take part!

 

Dr. Femina Ali: Mom, dentist and volunteer extraordinaire

April 8th, 2013

Editor's note: Below is an except from Cassidy Swanson's article Dr. Femina Ali: Mom, dentist and volunteer extraordinaire featured on the Swellesley Report and JSONS.org. Cassidy Swanson is currently a journalism graduate student at Emerson College in Boston.

WELLESLEY – For the first thing on a Thursday morning, Wellesley Dental Group is an unusually cheery place. The staff is warm and friendly, and the patients seem happy to be there – not typical for a dentist’s office. At the center of it all is Dr. Femina Ali, with her bright smile and positive outlook.

“[My staff] are my daytime family, I tell them that,’” she said.

Femina is more than a friendly boss and dentist. As a Pakistani immigrant, she is part of the changing face of the town of Wellesley, an affluent and overwhelmingly white community for many years. That’s starting to change. Between 2000 and 2010, census data shows that people of Asian ancestry, particularly from eastern Asia and the Indian subcontinent, shot up from 6 percent to 10 percent of the total population – a significant change in a town of 28,000.

But Femina, who has lived in Wellesley for 16 years, is much more than a representative of demographic change in the community.  She is an agent of commitment and change as well. After starting as a volunteer at her children’s elementary school, today she is an active volunteer in many aspects of community life from A to Z, serving on 20 committees and fundraising events each year.

“[Femina] doesn't seem to be complete unless she is heavily engrossed in other town-wide projects,” said Mary Bowers, of the Council on Aging, where Femina donates dental service to elderly in need. “She never ceases to amaze me with her energy and resolve to make this place a better place while she is on this good earth.”

Femina grew up in Karachi, Pakistan, and attended dental school at De’Montmorency College of Dentistry in Lahore. There she met her husband, Dr. Ejaz Ali. The Alis graduated in 1982 and moved to the United States in 1987 with the goal of opening their own dentistry practice. They had a daughter, Zarah, in 1988, and a son, Zann, in 1990.

“We came here in pursuit of higher education, in pursuit of the American dream,” she said. “But now, this is home to me.”

The Alis lived their first few years in the United States in Indiana and Florida, supporting their family by working odd jobs. Though both Drs. Ali had completed dental school in Pakistan, they could not practice in the United States without completing another dental program here.

When Ejaz was accepted into Tufts Dental School, the family moved to Malden. He graduated in 1994, and Feminastarted at Tufts shortly after in 1995.

Being at Tufts brought the Alis to the state they grew to know and love.

“Massachusetts grew on us,” she said. “We cannot leave Massachusetts now, we are so spoiled [here]. This is the best place to live, I think, in the United States.”

When Femina graduated in 1997, the opportunity to start their own practice became available. The Alis moved to Wellesley, where they opened Wellesley Dental Group, and they haven’t looked back since.

With her husband’s support and a successful practice, by the time Zann and Zarah were in school, Femina felt she could give back to the Wellesley community. That’s when she was bitten by the volunteering bug.

Today, Femina is involved with more than 20 different organizations, annual events and fundraisers in the town of Wellesley. She serves as the president of the Women’s Business Network, a board member of the Wellesley Chamber of Commerce, a mentor for the Wellesley College Pre-Dental Society, a board member of the Wellesley Hills Junior Women’s Club, a founding member of the Fund for Wellesley, and many other positions. She also started a highly successful annual candy drive after Halloween, in which all the candy is sent in care packages to soldiers serving overseas.

“You just feel like you get a lot back by giving back,” she said. “Since I am part of all different organizations in town, I enjoy that relationship part, that I can cultivate a relationship with different organizations.”

Femina and Ejaz are also involved with the Wellesley Newcomers Club, an outreach organization for new residents.

Femina said she has seen many other immigrants from Asian countries getting involved in the community, and doesn't believe that any sort of cultural barrier or apathy keeps foreigners from fully integrating; it just takes a little time for some.

“Sometimes it is because you are new to town – you could be Asian-American, or just American,” she said. “You have to get through survival mode first, getting the kids settled in school, and then once you’re settled in, you [say], ‘What can I do to give back to the community?’”

Through her volunteer work, Femina has earned the respect and friendship of many. The Rev. Dr. Bonnie Jelinek, pastor at the Wellesley Hills Congregational Church, served with Femina on the Wellesley High School PTSO, and says Femina is “a woman of incredible integrity.”

“She comes up with ideas that are phenomenal,” Jelinek said. “She was just very, very good about having excellent communication between the parents and the school. She loves her community so much, and she’ll do anything she can to help it and advance it.”

Gail Van Kleeck, one of Femina’s colleagues in the Women’s Business Network, said Femina has been a great leader for the organization.

“I think she’s really good team player,” Van Kleeck said. “She does not seek the limelight; she encourages people. She is always there to affirm people. [That is] especially rare in a powerful woman. She is gracious and she is engaging and she is appreciative.”

Zarah is currently studying dentistry at Tufts, and the Alis hope to pass the practice onto their daughter when they retire. Ejaz said they would like to travel to developing countries and donate dental services to people in need.

“This way, we can travel, we can have fun, and we can take dentistry from the United States and spread it around the world,” he said.

But until then, Femina said, she still has a lot to do in Wellesley.

“This town has given me so much,” she said. “This town has give me a place to live, a place to work, a very friendly community…This town has given good education to my kids…So whatever I do for my town, it’s not enough. I wish I had more time.”

To read the full article, Dr. Femina Ali: Mom, dentist and volunteer extraordinaire, please visit JSONS.org.

 

Preventing Teeth Staining

April 4th, 2013

After appointments for tooth whitening and countless nights of whitening strips, you may still find yourself struggling with teeth staining. But what exactly causes the staining? Dentists explain that are certain foods and drinks that are prone to staining teeth.

To start off, foods and drinks with intense color tend to be big culprits of staining. The higher the pigmentation in color, the more likely it will cause a deeper stain. The color that is inherent in these foods comes from chromogens, which are highly colored molecules that have a strong affinity to dental enamel. This means that these molecules are more likely to stick and stay on your teeth. Acidic foods and drinks, even ones that may not be considered intensely colored, also lead to staining due to the erosion of dental enamel. These types of food tend to soften teeth, which makes it easier for chromogens to stick on. Another promoter of teeth includes tannins, which are food compounds that enhance chromogens’ ability to attach enamel.

Here are various foods and drinks that may leave you susceptible to teeth-staining:

Wine: red wine is considered an acidic beverage that holds both chromogens and tannins. Also, don’t be fooled! White wine, although almost colorless, also promotes staining. The New York University School of Dentistry presented studies that demonstrated that teeth exposed to tea were more likely to be more severely stained if they were previously exposed to white wine.

Tea: black tea is very saturated with stain-promoting tannins Dentists state that tea may leave teeth even more severely stained than coffee, which is chromogen-rich, but low in tannins. However, if you are a tea-lover and need your daily fix, some less teeth-staining alternatives include herbal, green and white teas.

Cola: it is obvious that this deep brown beverage (which is highly acidic and chromogen-rich) causes major teeth stain, but what you may not know is that the acidity of light-colored soft drinks also leads to a sufficient amount of teeth staining. Try your best to cut down on these carbonated drinks and reach for less acidic alternative.

Sports drinks: we know of the harmful effects of sports drinks on teeth enamel, and sure enough, the weakening of teeth enamel leads to more susceptibility to staining. Read more about these effects in our post Hold the Gatorade!

[caption id="attachment_4490" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Photo by epSos.de"][/caption]

Berries: although strawberries and blueberries are high in anti-oxidants and are known to be healthy food choices, they are highly pigmented in color and are very likely to stain teeth.

Sweets: after working through a lollipop, you may sometimes find yourself with a different colored tongue; this is a good indicator that hard candies, chewing gum, and popsicles can also lead to stains as well

Although there are many foods and beverages that can cause teeth staining, that doesn’t mean that cannot be eaten; just be sure to brush well! Dentists also suggest using straws to sip on beverages that are acidic and highly pigmented in nature. Swallowing stain-causing foods quickly also helps to protect your teeth. Swishing and rinsing after consuming and drinking can also lessen the acidity and remove the substances that cause teeth staining.

If you have any concerns, Drs. Ali & Ali and their team at Wellesley Dental Group will be very happy to answer your questions. Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com!

 

References:

Webmd

The Huffington Post

 

Hold the Gatorade!

April 4th, 2013

The harmful effects of energy and sports drinks


[caption id="attachment_4473" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Image by Joel Klal"][/caption]

Many people give the excuse that they’d rather drink energy drinks and sports drinks because they believe that they are healthier than soda when it comes to oral health. However, this is quite far from the truth, explains researcher Poonam Jian, an associate professor and director of community dentistry at the Southern Illinois University School of Dental Medicine. Jian’s study, which was published in General Dentistry, looked at 13 different sport drinks and nine energy drinks for acidity. 6 drinks were tested and their effects on tooth enamel were determined. Jain and his team had acquired enamel samples, which were immersed in the different drinks for 15 minutes, stimulating an individual drinking the energy or sports drink in real life. It was found that both sports drinks and energy drinks resulted in tooth damage, where there was significant enamel loss. The average enamel lost with sports drinks was about 1.5% and the average loss for energy drink was more than 3%.

Researchers have listed Gatorade Blue as the sports drinks with the highest acidity, next to Hydr8. Other energy drinks containing high acidity content include:

  • Red Bull Sugarfree
  • Monster Assault
  • 5-hour Energy
  • Von Dutch
  • Rockstar

Because of their sugary content, both teens and young adults alike tend to consider these drinks as their favorite go-to beverages. Up to half of U.S. teens and young adults indulge in energy drinks, and studies have shown that more than half have at least one sports drink a day. To counter this, Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin and Senator Richard Blumenthal have been trying to bring about change by urging top energy drink makers to stop marketing to children. Durbin and Blumenthal sent letters to the CEOs of Monster, Red Bull and Rockstar that highlighted examples of ways these companies have been reaching out to children, including sponsoring high school sporting events and Little League games. This is a great start in weaning teens and young adults off of these drinks, and perhaps a good step forward in bringing about awareness of the drinks’ harmful effects.

Although it will be a difficult task to convince these major energy and sports drinks companies to limit their advertisements, it is important to be aware these drinks’ consequences on oral health. Jian suggests although it is best to cut these drinks out completely, but he understands that it is difficult to give them up completely. He provides some tips to minimize the intake of these drinks. Jian explains that diluting the drinks and not brushing immediately after drinking them would help lower the amount of acid intake and prevent the spreading of acid in the mouth.

As you make another trip to the market to purchase more beverages, be mindful of the content of these drinks and think of the consequences they may have on your oral health! If you have any concerns, Drs. Ali & Ali and their team at Wellesley Dental Group will be very happy to answer your questions. Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com!

 

References:

WebMD

Sun Times

Safety and Infection Control at the Dentist

April 3rd, 2013

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Recent news reports have come out regarding dental practice safety and infection control, notably, involving a Tulsa, Oklahoma practice. We want to take a moment and share what we do to ensure the safety of our patients. We take universal precautions in sterilization practices that are applied to everyone who comes through the doors of Wellesley Dental Group. Our top concern is in abiding by strict infection control guidelines for the health of our patients, team, and Drs.; “Do No Harm” is our mantra.

Every day, every hour, and every minute we adhere to a very strict regimen to disinfect and sterilize everything that comes into contact with our patients. We want to let you in on the behind-the-scenes processes that are as much a part of our routine as the teeth cleaning, crowns, and x-rays we do every day.

  • Hand washing
    • We wash our hands consistently, especially before and after interacting with any patients.
    • We follow the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Bloodborne Pathogens Standards.
  • Plastic barriers are placed on all surfaces that are potentially touched to prevent any cross contamination:
    • Before any patient enters, the operatory is cleaned with a medical grade disinfectant and all plastic barriers are changed. Disinfected surfaces include equipment and surfaces, such as x-ray units and countertops.
    • Masks and safety glasses are worn.
    • Gloves are worn at all times and are changed between every patient.
    • Sometimes numerous gloves are thrown out during particularly long procedures for a given patient. We go through boxes upon boxes of gloves every day.
    • All pillows, light handles, etc, are draped with protective covers.
  • All disposable instruments (needles, suction tips, etc) are disposed after one use. These instruments are disposed in puncture resistant biohazard containers.
  • Non-disposable instruments are sterilized in small, individual packages in our autoclave. The autoclaving process destroys all forms of microbial life.
    • Instruments (drills, filling and cleaning instruments, etc) are brought to the sterilization room
    • The instruments are scrubbed by hand and washed.
    • Steeped in a solution for 20 minutes as they undergo an ultrasonic bath
    • Dried and placed into special, small, individually wrapped packages
    • These packages are then autoclaved.
    • After the autoclaving, there is a color indicator on the package that changes, confirming that process was done correctly.

When it comes to knowing whether the autoclave works correctly every time, we don’t solely rely on the color indicator on the packages. Our autoclave is a brand-name, state of the art machine that blasts instruments with extreme heat and high, steam pressure in an airtight enclosure. Every week, to ensure it is working according to the manufacturer’s standards, we do a spore test.

  • We put a closed packet of spores into the autoclave
  • The packet undergoes the autoclaving process
  • The autoclaved packet is then sent to an independent lab for analysis.
  • To pass the test, all spores must be inactivated.

[caption id="attachment_4457" align="aligncenter" width="600" caption="Image from Med101Dental.com"][/caption]

We take the safety of our patients very seriously and will continue to follow the highest standards laid forth by the CDC, AGD, and OSHA. As members of the AGD (Academy of General Dentistry), we strive to stay ahead of the curve when it comes to protecting our patients from the transmission of diseases. We think that AGD President Jeffrey M. Cole, DDS, MBA, FAGD sums up our beliefs very concisely:

“Because many dental procedures involve direct contact with blood and saliva, safety protocols are put in place to help stop the spread of disease. Heat sterilization of dental instruments helps prevent the spread of diseases like hepatitis and HIV. By following stringent best practices, AGD dentists maintain a commitment to patient health and safety. If your dentist is an AGD member, you can be confident that he or she strives to provide the best quality care to their patients by utilizing the most current safety protocols.”

Our patients can always expect the highest standards of quality and care. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to be in touch with us. Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group are infection control advocates; we will be happy to answer any questions you may have. Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com!

 

Sources:

AGD:

OSHA

CDC

 

Tufts Alumni Admissions Program: TAAP

March 28th, 2013

 

Our wonderful Dr. Femina Ali recently reached the end of her commitment as Tufts Alumni Admissions Program's committee chair for the Metro-West area. Both and and Dr. Ali graduated from Tufts Dental School, one of the finest Dental Schools in the nation. Tufts is also the Alma Mater of Drs. Ali’s daughter, Zarah, who will soon become the next Dr. Ali. Zarah is currently enrolled in Tufts Dental School and recently had the honor of receiving her White Coat by her loving parents.

Dr. Femina Ali’s love of Tufts is palpable and she reluctantly decided to resign as Chair. Her numerous community commitments in and around the MetreoWest area as well as commitments to her family keep her incredibly busy. She is looking forward to her new adventures within her volunteer communities and is proud to be a part of the Wellesley Hills Junior Women’s Club, serves as President of the Women’s Business Network, serves on the board of the Wellesley Chamber of Commerce, supports the Wellesley Newcomers Club,  serves as a board member of the Wellesley Teen Center, and more. Drs. Ali & Ali also were among the founding members of the Fund for Wellesley and are members of the Wellesley Club.

[caption id="attachment_4425" align="aligncenter" width="594" caption="Drs. Ali & Ali presenting their daughter with her white coat at the 2013 Tufts ceremony."]Drs. Ali & Ali presenting their daughter with her white coat at the 2013 Tufts ceremony.[/caption]

As hard as it is to step down from her position at Tufts, she knows that she will be back alongside her fellow Jumbos. Here is her letter of resignation to her Tufts Admissions Committee:

"I want to thank you so much for making my time as your TAAP Chair so enriching and fulfilling. You have been an amazing group. Together, we helped grow our Tufts family and changed the lives of our new Jumbos. What we do at TAAP is such an incredible testament to how special Tufts is. The care and time we take to get to know every applicant, hear their stories, and help them embark on one of the most exciting times of their lives; it's not something we take lightly. I have been so proud that we have upheld this tradition with integrity and tenacity.

"It is on this note that I want to announce my resignation from TAAP and resignation as the Committee Chair. It has been a time I will never forget and sadly, personal and other volunteer obligations will prevent me from participating next year. I wish you all the best and look forward to when I can serve alongside you once again for the greater good and for the Tufts we all love."

Her announcement has garnered a outpouring of love and support from the Tufts community:

"We have been lucky to have you as the chair of Norfolk North committee for as long as we did.  You have been a very thorough and conscientious chairperson who has demonstrated a strong commitment to the success of TAAP.  We thank you for the energy and heart you have brought to your TAAP volunteerism.  I have truly enjoyed working with you."

“I want to thank you so much for doing such amazing work as our TAAP committee chair! You will be incredibly difficult to replace, and you’ve done so much to  help many Tufts students find their way here. I appreciate your help! We’ll miss you, come back any time!"

"You did such a good job as chair of this committee.  It was fun and easy to work with you.  Good luck with all your new adventures.  I am sure we will cross paths again soon."

“Thanks for your hard work in the committee and best of luck in your future endeavors.”

"Thank you so much for your commitment to Tufts, especially in a challenging application year with high volume - after taking a hiatus from interviewing for several years, it was great to be back meeting with applicants, and I appreciate your help in making this return transition such an enjoyable one."

"You will absolutely be missed!  You have done an amazing job as the Committee Chair – thank you so much for all of your hard work!  I was so glad to finally meet you in the fall – and also sorry that I will not be working with you going forward.  I wish you lots of luck in all of your endeavors in the future"

 

 

A Possible Natural Remedy for Sensitive Teeth

March 26th, 2013

[caption id="attachment_4377" align="alignright" width="199" caption="Image by vivekrajkanhangad"][/caption]

The scientists explained that about 3 out of every 4 people have teeth that are sensitive to hot, cold, sweet or sour foods and drinks. This sensitivity results when teeth enamel and the underlying dentin begin to wear down, stimulating the nerves within the teeth. This results in the painful sensation that many feel when eating certain foods. While sugar-free gums and toothpastes, such as Sensodyne, have been used to reduce tooth sensitivity, the scientists highlighted the need for simultaneous rebuilding of both the enamel and dentin to ensure less sensitivity. They began to look into dopamine, the sticky material that mussels use to adhere to surfaces. The scientists believed that this type of material would allow minerals necessary for renewal to adhere long enough to the dentin to improve the rebuilding process.

They attempted to demonstrate the possibility of using this material through multiple laboratory tests where they bathed human teeth with worn down enamel and dentin in a solution that contained the dopamine and essential minerals. Results showed that teeth that were placed in dopamine and mineral solution reformed dentin and enamel; however, the teeth kept in the solution containing only minerals resulted in the rebuilding of only the enamel. This shows the power of the dopamine and its adhesive effect of binding minerals for more effective rebuilding both enamel and dentin. Yun-Zhi Zhou believes that this sticky material found in mussels may be a promising means for preventing teeth sensitivity and may prove to be a universal technique that can be applied to millions worldwide.

As for some current, tried and true options, numerous toothpastes are available. Please talk with your dentist about which may be best for you. Desensitizing toothpaste works by blocking "transmission of sensation from the tooth surface to the nerve" They generally require consistent use for sensitivity to diminish. Some options Drs. Ali & Ali recommend are:

-ClinPro (available in-office)

-Prevident (prescription)

-Sensodyne (over the counter)

For more information about tooth sensitivity, visit another post of our blog: Are You Sensitive? Also, if you have any more questions about sensitivity, please feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group; they will be happy to answer your questionsContact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment and consultation.

References:

ACS.org

Science Daily.com

ADA Mouth Healthy

 

Picking Up a Healthy Habit: Flossing!

March 25th, 2013

A survey done in 2008 showed that 10% of Americans never floss and less than half the population flosses. Many seem to discount the importance of flossing, but it has been found to be even more essential than tooth brushing when it comes to the prevention periodontal disease and tooth loss.

People generally consider flossing as a means to remove food stuck in between teeth. However, flossing takes a further step and actually removes dental plaque, which is the known to be the main culprit of tooth decay, gingivitis, and gum disease. If plaque is not properly removed, it can harden into tartar, which can only be removed by a dental professional. When this occurs, brushing and cleaning between teeth can become more difficult, leading to swollen or even bleeding gum tissue. Another reason for a lack of flossing is how troublesome it can be.  Dentists do admit that it is not easy! But with more practice, you can get the hang of it.

The American Dental Association provides a couple steps to get you on board with flossing:

  • Use about 18 in. of floss wound around one of your middle fingers, with the rest wound around the opposite middle finger.
  • Hold the floss tightly between the thumbs and forefingers and gently insert it between the teeth.
  • Curve the floss into a “C” shape against the side of the tooth.
  • Rub the floss gently up and down, keeping it pressed against the tooth. Don’t jerk or snap the floss.
  • Floss all your teeth and don’t forget to floss behind your back teeth!

Remember, the last step is just as important! Although it may seem unlikely for anything to get stuck in that area, most gum disease and tooth decay is found in the back of your mouth. Be mindful of your back teeth as you floss. The American Dental Association also recommends flossing once a day. Many people find flossing in the evening before bed a good time to do so, allowing them to go to sleep with clean teeth.

If flossing proves to be very difficult for you or if poses as a problem due to previous dental work, do not fret! Alternatives to flossing include toothpick-like dental stimulators, such as Stim-U-Dents and Soft-Picks, allows you to go in spaces between your teeth as well. If you find it hard to maneuver floss between teeth, switching to waxed floss will make flossing smoother and easier to get between the crevices.

If you have any more questions about flossing, feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group; they will be happy to answer your questionsContact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment and consultation.

References:

ADA Public Resources

ADA Floss Article

WebMD

 

100 Women We Admire Most

March 21st, 2013

A couple weeks ago, nominations were flowing in during the Women's Leadership Forum's 100 Women We Admire Most. Our own Dr. Femina Ali was nominated and we were all so touched by the wonderful things everyone had to say.

Today, the Women's Leadership Forum released an ebook of the final list of the 100 Women We Admire Most and, wonderfully, Dr. Femina Ali of Wellesley Dental Group, Drs. Ali & Ali is included! To get a copy of the ebook, please visit their website here. We want to thank you all for your support in making this happen, we couldn't have done it without the help of our WDG family!

Here are some wonderful things the community shared about Dr. Femina Ali during her nomination:

  • "Femina is bright, motivates others, a good delegator but not shy from rolling up her sleeves to do the work herself. She is very community oriented, spirited, a great leader, and an excellent listener. Her assessments are accurate and she's involved in many volunteer opportunities. Femina is always giving back."
  • "She's the bestest"
  • "She takes the responsibility for leadership and wraps it in kindness, wisdom and compassion."
  • "She is an amazing role model in the community and runs the type of family-owned business that you want to give your business to."
  • "Friendly, caring and has good leadership skills."
  • "She is well spoken, active in her community and has a sense of caring and kindness for her patients and people in general that is not often seen in the business community."
  • "She has dedicated her time and talent to making many opportunities for professional women to learn from and support each other."

 

Your Perfect Smile with Invisalign

March 20th, 2013

Have you ever looked in the mirror and thought to yourself hey, it would be nice to get my teeth straightened? However, afterwards you start to think of all those long months with braces and the hassles that come with them. It doesn’t have to be this way! Invisalign provides an alternative to braces and offers an innovative way to straighten teeth.

What's great about Invisalign is that the aligners are made from smooth and comfortable plastic that is worn over the teeth. These aligners will gradually straighten your teeth, without the hassle of getting wires tightened on a regular basis. Invisalign is also clear so that most people around you won't even know that you are straightening your teeth. You put on new aligners every two weeks until you have completed the treatment plan created by your dentist.

When you compare Invisalign and braces, there is also a big difference in terms of comfort and appearance. Invisalign allows you to straighten your teeth without having to worry about wires that can poke and irritate your mouth. The aligners are easy to take out and clean. Braces tend to capture food particles and flossing is an incredible hassle. What's also wonderful about Invisalign is that you can eat absolutely anything you want! You don't have to worry about getting gum stuck between wires and hard foods making your brackets come undone. You simply take off your aligners and dig in to your food.

If you are interested in Invisalign, Dr. Ejaz Ali is an Invisalign Preferred Provider. Please set up an appointment for a consultation. Do some research and get to know your wants and needs, Invisalign's website provides a list of questions based on your age that you can ask your doctor. Soon, you will have your dream smile!

References:

http://www.invisalign.com/Pages/default.aspx

 

Are you prepared for an emergency?

March 18th, 2013

Emergency preparedness is something that we all value. It’s a safeguard against the unthinkable. Emergency responders, especially, bear much responsibility for keeping the community safe and lending support during times of need.

Recently, dental responder legislation is awaiting presidential signature and enactment since its being approved by the House of Representatives, gained consent from the Senate, and approval by Congress. This means, dentists, dental schools, and dental facilities may be included in state public emergency plans!

In Wellesley, the Health Department has always valued dentists and their medical training. They have included dentists in their preparedness events, including the outbreaks of the norovirus and flu. The Wellesley Health Department also includes dentists in their Volunteer Reserve Corps, advanced CPR training and other wonderful events that benefit the community in such tangible and essential ways.

Drs. Ali & Ali are actively involved with the Wellesley Health Department and enjoy being the Smile Ambassadors for oral health. Urging dentists to play a more prominent role in public health and safety is a very positive change, and at Wellesley Dental Group, we will continue to serve our community gladly.

As it happens, Dr. Femina Ali attended an Emergency Preparedness event at the Wellesley Health Department in March, which discusses the importance of beginning safety measures at home. Some of the discussions that resonated with her were that emergency preparedness lies within the small measures one takes on a regular basis. Some tips she wants to share is that:

  • Stock emergency supplies, which can include 3 days worth of food and water in airtight containers, medicines and medical records for both you and your pets, and a photo of you and your pet together in case you are separated. Visit the American Red Cross for more ideas.
  • Conduct a home hazard hunt, which involves taking a closer look at ordinary items in your home that can cause injury. Anything that can move, fall, break, or cause a fire is a potential hazard.
  • Determine 2 escape routes out of every room and be sure you install smoke detectors on every floor, especially near bedrooms. Check batteries every 6 months.
  • Learn CPR.
  • ICE your cell phone so emergency responders know whom to contact.
  • Know your emergency phone numbers and keep them by the phone. Know the Mass 211 phone number, which is an information hotline for times of emergency. Visit their website for more information.

If you would like to learn more about the Wellesley Health Department and emergency preparedness, please visit their website here, or call them at: (781) 235-0135. Their office can be found at the Annie F. Warren Building on the Second Floor on 90 Washington Street, in Wellesley, MA. Check them out for more events so you, too, can be prepared!

Their next event is a workshop on Perimenopause and Menopause with women's health expert Dr. Ronee Skornik from Women’s Health Associates in Wellesley. The event will be held at the Wellesley Free Library from 6:30-8:39 pm on Thursday, March 21.

Resources:

ADA

Wellesley Health Department

American Red Cross

Mass 211

Wellesley Free Library

MA Health and Human Services

Is Tongue Brushing Necessary?

March 12th, 2013

 

Most people know that brushing and flossing teeth is necessary to maintain healthy teeth, preventing cavities and tooth decay. Often times tongue brushing is discounted. However, tongue brushing is just as important for your overall dental hygiene.

Taking a step into history, many eastern cultures have paid close attention to tongue hygiene. In Chinese medicine, tongue inspection was thought to be a critical aspect of making medical diagnoses and determining prognosis. It has also been recorded that Native Americans took part in a daily ritual that not only involved teeth brushing, but also tongue scraping, followed by a mouth rinse of concoctions of various herbs. Rudimentary tortoise shell and bone inscriptions have been able to reveal thoughts on tongue hygiene that even date back to the 16th century BC!

There must be a reason why tongue hygiene has been integral in terms of determining health in various cultures. Studies have shown that keeping your tongue clean and healthy is, indeed, essential. Many microorganisms have been found to reside on the dorsum of the tongue. Scientists have found that tongue brushing can lead to the decrease in bacterial counts on the tongue. Bacteria have been found to colonize the tongue and periodontal packets, which influence the generation of sulfur compounds in periodontal health and disease. These are the very compounds that cause patients to have halitosis, or simply known as bad breath.

It is very easy to forget about brushing your tongue, but it gets easier when practiced on a daily basis. People also tend to shy away from tongue brushing because their gag reflex starts right up. Doctors recommend that the best time for tongue cleaning is in the morning on an empty stomach, to reduce the possibility of vomiting and gagging. It has also been suggested that gag reflex becomes more controlled with the continual cleaning of the tongue.

Here are a couple steps to get you on your way to tongue bushing!

1. Place the tongue as far out of the mouth as possible

2. Look for the locations where there is debris accumulation; unfortunately, this is usual towards the back of your tongue.

3. Place the tongue cleaner as far as possible and make contact with the flattened tongue.

4. Pull the tongue cleaner forward slowly to the front of the mouth, making sure to cover as much surface area as possible.

5. Rinse the tongue cleaner and repeat!

Tongue brushing can be a hassle in the beginning, but once it becomes routine, the difference in your oral health will be so noticeable. Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group will be happy to answer your questions about oral health and tongue brushing. Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment and consultation.

 

References:

Christensen G. Why clean your tongue? J Am Dent Assoc 1998; 129: 1605–07.

Danser M. M., Gomez S. M., Van der Wejden, G. A. (2003). Tongue coating and tongue brushing: a literature review. 3:151-8.

 

A relaxing trip to the dentist

March 6th, 2013

Imagine not being afraid to go to the dentist. Imagine being able to accomplish all your dental care in as little as one appointment. This is what Sedation Dentistry can do for you. Oral Sedation Dentistry protocols have been used safely for over 30 years with millions of dental procedures. Years of neglect can be reversed in a few hours. You will be able to smile with confidence and chew your food without pain. If you've been putting off years of dental work, Sedation Dentistry can change your life.

After a consultation to discuss the level of sedation that is needed as well as an in-depth review of the patient's medical history, your dentist will recommend the right level of sedation.   Every patient is different and requires different levels of sedation.

Another form of calming treatment that dentists use is called relaxation dentistry. This process uses nitrous oxide (also known as laughing gas) to numb the nerves. Nitrous oxide is administered by placing a tube onto the patient's nose and having them inhale for a few minutes prior to the dentist starting. The patient has the option to keep the nitrous oxide mask on through the entire procedure, or having it removed once numbed enough. Most patients request to keep their masks on, as nitrous oxide can wear off.

Dentists treat millions of patients with sedatives and relaxation dentistry every year. Those who fear going to the dentist are able to rest at ease knowing that every visit will be painless and soothing. Another great thing about these forms of dentistry is that they're safe and effective for people in all age groups.

When thinking about whether sedation or relaxation dentistry is right for you, please chat with us to see whether it’s a good fit and what you need to do to prepare. Drs. Ali & Ali specialize in these forms of density and would love to make your next visit one that leaves you calm and relieved. Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment and consultation.

Sources: MouthHealthy.org

Thinking about your wisdom teeth...

March 4th, 2013

Wisdom teeth are the third set of molars that usually come in around the ages of 17 and 25. Getting new molars can be exciting. Who doesn’t want an extra set of teeth to gnaw on delicious food? New molars may at first seem like wonderful assets, however, sometimes they can lead to complications that can cause problems down the road.

There are instances when new teeth cannot fully come out all the way, resulting in what is known as impacted teeth. Since they are located towards the back of the mouth, these third molars may be tricky to clean, which can lead a buildup of food particles and bacteria. Once there is an accumulation of bacteria, the gum surrounding the tooth can become infected and swollen, which is the dental disorder known as pericoronitis. However, pericoronitis can be kept under control with antibiotics and warm salt-water rinses.

Partially erupted wisdom teeth can also lead to periodontal disease, also known as gum disease. In periodontitis, inflammation around the teeth causes the gums to pull away from the teeth. This can lead to the formation of “pockets,” which can become easily infected. Research has shown that once gum disease has been established in the wisdom teeth area, problems will be persistent and progressive. Dentists do suggest that a solution to this problem is to have your pesky molars extracted.

You may look at your teeth right now and say to yourself, hey, my wisdom teeth don’t look bad at all. They may seem to have come in normally and don’t really give you any problems. However, even if you are pain free, that doesn’t mean you should be worry free. The American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons have shown that wisdom teeth that have come out fully can still be susceptible to disease and infections. Here at Wellesley Dental Group, we have Dr. Ghazi, our periodontist, who specializes in wisdom teeth extractions. Be sure to make make an appointment with us for a consultation.  Regular check-ups cleaning are essential to keep your teeth happy and healthy.

Drs. Ali & Ali and their team at Wellesley Dental Group will be very happy to answer your questions about oral health. Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com!

References:

Ash M. Costich ER, Hayward JR: A study of periodontal hazards of third molars. Journal of Periodontology 1962;33:209

Elter JR, Coumo CJ, Offenbacher S, et.al. Third molars associated with periodontal

pathology in NHANES III. Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, 2004; 62:440

Periocoronitis article from Colgate

 

 

 

 

Quick tips to healthier teeth

February 28th, 2013

Amid your busy schedules and rush to and from work, it’s easy to grab a snack that may not be the best thing for your teeth. Here are a few quick tips on how to keep your pearly whites in good shape.  Hold the sugar. Some of our favorite snacks unfortunately end up hurting our teeth. Foods high in sugar content, including cookies and carbonated drinks, end up increasing the amount of energy that acid-producing bacteria in your mouth consume.  Instead of making a grab for hard candies and cake, pick up some fresh fruit, such as apples or pears, which have high water content; these healthy alternatives will offset your sugar intake and keep you hydrated.
But what about potato chips and pasta? Although they aren't sweet, these foods can easily get stuck between the teeth and small crevices. Bacteria and also the pre-digestive process can easily convert starches to sugar in no time.
Watch what you’re chewing Sometimes you can be sitting in class or in your cubicle, gnawing away at your pencil without realizing it. Or maybe you can’t seem to find a pair of scissors and decide to use your teeth to remove clothing tags. Kick that habit! It has been shown that chewing on ice, popcorn kernels, pens, and even bobby pins can wear down your tooth and enamel surfaces. Hard foods including some nuts and fruits should be cut into smaller pieces before eating. Chewing on hard substances can lead to cracks in your tooth. Try to choose softer foods that don’t make you use excessive force.
Even though we want to keep our teeth healthy at all times, there are those instances when we want to treat ourselves to a delicious slice of pie or dig into a plate of French fries. Make sure to brush! Brushing is recommended after every meal; however if you don’t have time, rinse with plain water to clear your mouth.  Good dental hygiene makes for a healthier smile and a healthier you.

Drs. Ali & Ali and their team at Wellesley Dental Group will be very happy to answer your questions about oral health. Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com!

From our guest blogger, Jacquelyn Chou from Wellesley College.

 

My Sinsational experience

February 26th, 2013

For the last few years I’ve wanted to brighten my smile. As a tea lover, whitening toothpaste never worked well enough and I shudder to think what my teeth would look like without any assistance. Since I have fairly sensitive teeth, I’ve shied away from truly considering whitening because I’m not willing to buy into the thought that beauty means pain. How could I get the radiant teeth I’ve always wanted but not feel as though my teeth would disown me?

Once I started with Wellesley Dental Group, I kept hearing about Sinsational Whitening that not only is great for sensitive teeth, but also takes less than half an hour. I’d seen patients walking out of the office with pretty orange organza bags with a sleek whitening pen and feel jealous. I’d feel even more jealous when I’d see their gorgeous grin. I decided to take the leap.

Despite what everyone told me, I couldn’t fully believe that I wouldn’t experience any discomfort. My palms were damp from my nerves as Tanya polished my teeth, making sure the gel would be able to percolate through every part of my teeth. She smiled reassuringly once she was done; admiring her work before deftly glossing my lips with Vitamin E oil so the whitening gel wouldn’t sting. I was brimming with excitement and trepidation simultaneously.

I felt as though I were given the royal treatment, relaxing comfortably with the gel and interesting mouthpiece in place (it’s fashioned after a scuba mouthpiece!). True, not talking for twenty-some-odd minutes was a bit tough, and my jaw got a bit tired from clamping down, however, this was pretty great. What’s more, I was in no pain whatsoever. Shocking!

Once I was done, and time really did fly, I couldn’t wait to see my teeth sparkle. They did and I had boosted my color a few shades. I was given one of those whitening pens so I could continue to whiten my teeth over the next week: every night for half an hour before I’d go to sleep.

For something as convenient as Sinsational, I’ll definitely do it again once my tea drinking catches up with me!

Do you have any whitening stories? Has any whitening treatment dazzled you? Share in the comments below.

Drs. Ali & Ali and their team at Wellesley Dental Group will be very happy to answer your questions about whitening. Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com!

Post by Julia Di Cicco for Wellesley Dental Group

Vacation week!

February 19th, 2013

It’s school vacation week! At WDG, we had an amazing President’s Day where we saw so many of our wonderful patients. We’re looking forward to seeing so many more this week. It really makes us happy when vacations come because it means that our busiest patients will have enough time to put their health first and come visit us for their much-needed care. This is especially true for our youngest patients who attend school.

 

Have you visited your dentist recently? Now might be a great time. It’s so important to prioritize your oral health, especially for children. Starting good oral health habits early on lead to a life of better oral and general health.

Besides visiting your dentist, here are some fun things you can do this vacation week!

1. Visit the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston and check out their special learning opportunities with your child. Workshops are from 10 am – 4 pm.

2. It’s February Vacation week at the zoo! Visit the Franklin Park Zoo and experience the wonders of the animal kingdom and the jungle with your child. This week, the zoo is offering extra learning opportunities for young enthusiasts.

3. Even though it’s still chilly, if your child is outdoorsy, here are some great suggestions for family hikes from Mommy Poppins, like Walden Pond. It may be a good idea to call beforehand to make sure there are no weather-related issues.

4. Check out your local library for fun events, concerts, and movies! The Wellesley Free Library even has a Young Scientist event where they are bringing in owls!

5. Spend family time together. No matter what you do, having fun as a family is special! Get off the computer and connect with one another the old fashioned way. Cook, take walks, listen to music. It doesn't matter as long as you have each other.

Keep smiling and have a safe vacation!

Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group will be very happy to answer your questions and advise you on your oral health needs. Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com!

Pre-term birth linked to gum disease

January 14th, 2013

[caption id="attachment_4003" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="Prevent premature birth by taking care of your gums."][/caption]

During pregnancy, between 50-70% of women will develop gingivitis. Gingivitis, while normally a serious condition, poses even more risks for mothers-to-be. In numerous studies (like this), low birth weight and pre-term birth are associated with gum disease, both of which are very serious and put the baby at risk for conditions such as respiratory disorders, blindness, and learning disabilities.

Why are pregnant women more at risk? Changes in the hormone, progesterone, occur during pregnancy. This change allows gingivitis-causing bacteria to grow more easily and gum tissue will also be more sensitive to plaque. Sometimes pregnancy tumors (non-cancerous growths) will form on inflamed gum tissue. If a woman has gingivitis before becoming pregnant, her gingivitis has a high likelihood of becoming more serious.

What can you do to minimize risk? Periodontal treatment can be done during pregnancy.By the time symptoms of gum disease are noticed, the infection is established and bacteria is already circulating through the woman’s body. If you are planning to become pregnant, or are already pregnant, meet with your dentist to create a plan to maintain good oral health. Good gum health practices are important to keep before and during pregnancy as preventative measures.

For more information about gingivitis and ways to maintain healthy gums, visit this article on our blog: Gingivitis, The Silent Destroyer. Also, these three articles are must-reads for expecting moms: Periodontal Disease and Pregnancy, Pregnancy GingivitisPremature Births Remain a Medical Mystery

Book your preventative check-up and assess your risks with our own Drs. Ali.  If additional help is needed, we always have our periodontist, Dr. Ghazi, who will help resolve any gum issues.

We highly recommend becoming familiar with both your dental benefits and needs.  Drs. Ali & Ali and their team at Wellesley Dental Group will be very happy to answer your questions and advise you on how best to minimize your chance of gum problems. Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com!

Sources:

ADA- Know Your Teeth

WebMD

LiveScience