Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Goodbye, Tiny Black Holes: Promoting Good Dental Hygiene in Young Children

A lot of parents find it hard to gauge when dental care is needed for their children. They are aware that cavities must be prevented, but they do not know the best way to avoid them
Oral hygiene must start before a child gets their first set of teeth. Here are some ways parents can promote healthy dental habits in young children.

Image source: wisegeek.com

  • Even before the child’s teeth appear, run a clean, damp cloth over the gums to cleanse the mouth of bacteria.
  • When the child has two teeth that touch, parents can begin flossing them.
  • Avoid the “baby bottle decay.” Do not train the child to fall asleep with a bottle of milk or juice stuck in their mouth. As much as possible, parents should not let their children become “suck dependent,” unless it is for water or breast milk.
  • Have the child drink a glass of water after consuming sweets.
  • Patiently train the child to brush, floss, and rinse their teeth and mouth. 
  • Let the child grow up without fear of the dentist by starting visits early.
Image source: wisegeek.com

Say goodbye to tooth decay with a beaming smile. Domenick Coletti, DDS, M.D., is an accomplished oral and maxillofacial surgeon based in Maryland. Visit this website to know more about his practice.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Conditions and Diseases that may Require Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery


Image source: telegraph.co.uk
An internationally recognized surgical specialty, oral and maxillofacial surgery (OMS) includes the diagnosis, surgical and related treatments of many diseases, injuries, defects, and aesthetic problems involving the head, neck, mouth, face, teeth, and jaws. Specialists in this field provide care options to patients experiencing such conditions as impacted wisdom teeth, facial pain, and misaligned jaws. They also offer reconstructive and dental implants, treat accident victims suffering facial injuries, and perform specific procedures for patients with tumors, cysts, and developmental craniofacial abnormalities.




The scope of OMS is wide and extensive. Specifically, it covers the following diseases or injuries, among other conditions:



  • Dental implant surgery and associated bone grafting
  • Dentofacial deformities
  • Bone augmentation
  • Oral and dentoalveolar surgery (removal of impacted teeth, cysts, etc.)
  • Congenital craniofacial deformities
  • Facial plastic surgery (rhinoplasty, rhytidectomy, blepharoplasty, etc.)
  • Snoring and sleep apnea correction surgery
  • Tumor or cancer surgery
  • Facial trauma surgery (facial bone fractures and related soft tissue injuries)
  • Reconstructive surgery of the face
  • Cleft lip and palate surgery
  • Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMJD)

Oral and maxillofacial surgeons do not work alone and often seek the advice, assistance, and even surgical support of other specialists such as dentists, orthodontists, pathologists, oncologists, prosthodontists, neurosurgeons, plastic surgeons, radiologists, ENT surgeons, and other medical professionals.
Image source: wisegeek.com



Domenick Coletti, DDS, M.D., is certified by the American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons. His practice at Central Maryland Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, P.A. includes performing dental implants, removing impacted wisdom teeth, treating facial trauma, and administering corrective jaw surgery. For more articles on oral health, click here.














Monday, January 4, 2016

Oral Bacteria Linked to Esophageal Cancer

People who are infected with Porphyromonas gingivalis (P. gingivalis), a group of bacteria responsible for various gum diseases, are at higher risk for acquiring esophageal cancer. The esophagus is a muscular tube that connects the throat with the stomach.

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Image source: www.scientificamerican.com


The correlation between P. gingivalis and esophageal cancer was made after a group of researchers from the University of Louisville (UofL) School of Dentistry found that 61 percent of patients with esophageal cancer were carriers of P. gingivalis.

"These findings provide the first direct evidence that P. gingivalis infection could be a novel risk factor for esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC), and may also serve as a prognostic biomarker for this type of cancer," revealed Dr. Huizhi Wang, assistant professor of oral immunology and infectious diseases at the UofL School of Dentistry.

Dr. Wang stated that their data, if confirmed, shows that the “eradication of a common oral pathogen may contribute to a reduction in the significant number of people suffering with ESCC.”

Using tissue samples from 100 patients with ESCC and 30 normal controls, the researchers measured the presence of the oral bacteria in the esophageal tissues of their subjects. At the end of their study, they found that bacterial count of P. gingivalis is higher among ESCC patients. The presence of these bacteria, they hypothesized, “facilitates the development of esophageal cancer.”

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Image source: www.webmd.com


Domenick Coletti DDS specializes in full-scope oral surgery at Central Maryland Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery P.A. Follow this Twitter page for more news in oral health.

Monday, December 28, 2015

Dental Plaque: A Daily Problem with Painful Consequences

In some advertisements for toothbrushes and toothpaste, plaque is sometimes incorrectly depicted as a particulate substance. Although particulate material in the form of food does accumulate in between teeth, they are not in themselves dental plaque, though they may eventually cause it.


Dental plaque is actually a biofilm, consisting of a thin yet visible film of filamentous microorganisms and particles stuck in between teeth. It is readily felt by the tongue and can even be scraped off by the fingernails though more effective methods of manual removal exist. When allowed to accumulate over the course of a day, it turns to tartar, which is evident as a visible yellow stain on teeth that can be removed only by dentist's instruments.
Image source: medscoopdaily.com
Plaque is a natural result of the normal flora of the mouth and, thus, cannot be prevented. Cosmetic concerns surrounding teeth discoloration aside, dental plaque plays a role in tooth decay and eventual tooth loss. When exposed to high-sugar or high-carbohydrate environments—a particularly common occurrence in modern diets—dental plaque retains lactic acid, which can cause dental caries if exposed to teeth for prolonged periods.

Image source: dental-planet.eu
Thus, the regular removal of plaque and tartar play a key role in lasting dental health. Habitual brushing and flossing on a daily basis dislodge dental plaque while still in its soft film form, whereas annual teeth cleaning visits to the dentist remove accumulated tartar. Fluoridated toothpaste and drinking water also strengthen the tooth and create a surface that bacteria cannot readily cling on to, reducing the amount of plaque that forms and making it easier to remove subsequently.


Domenick Coletti, DDS, M.D., is an accomplished oral surgeon in Maryland. Visit this website for more on him and his practice.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Does Wisdom Tooth Xtraction Cause Sinus Infection?

Wisdom tooth extraction is a relatively common dental procedure. This process is done when the third molars become impacted, with many dental surgeons recommending early intervention to prevent gum disease and structural misalignment. Despite its general simplicity, wisdom tooth extraction is still considered a major operation and patients need to be reminded of the potential complication that may occur post-procedure. A certain amount of swelling is expected to occur, but this should ease after a few days.

Image source: wikidoc.org

A less common side effect is a condition known as an oral-antral fistula, which happens when an upper molar is taken out. During the operation, a small cavity will be made from the mouth to the sinuses. Most of the time the tissue heals with no ill effects, but there is a possibility of infection. This is a recognized risk factor, and many dental surgeons warn patients to comply with their antibiotics treatment during the entire recovery duration. That said, many patients who have had their upper molars extracted are more likely to develop colds or a stuffed nose; although again, this should disappear within a few days. If the infection becomes severe, the individual may have to visit a general practitioner in tandem with his or her dentist to treat the cold while maintaining the stability of the wound healing.


Wisdom tooth extraction does not cause sinus infection though there are risks that are heavily emphasized before the operation. It is thus important for patients to have a clear understanding of the procedure, possible risks, and after-care.
 
Image source: webdental.com

Dr. Domenick Coletti is a maxillofacial surgeon focused on wisdom tooth extraction. Learn more by following this Twitter account.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

The Link Between Oral Health and Heart Disease

Tooth decay is an oral disease characterized by damage to the outer layers of the teeth. It occurs as a result of eating foods that are high in sugar and carbohydrates, not observing proper dental hygiene, and not getting enough fluoride. It can also be caused by diabetes, smoking, and not having enough saliva.

Image source: thanyapurahealth.com

Tooth decay not only causes unpleasant symptoms such as toothache, sensitivity, and bad breath: It has also been linked to heart disease.

A study published in the British Medical Journal found that people who reported having poor dental hygiene had a 70 percent risk of cardiovascular disease, compared to people who brush their teeth at least twice a day. Some researchers theorize that bacteria from the infected gums can become dislodged and enter the bloodstream. The bacteria can eventually attach to the blood vessels, causing clots to form.

Chronic gum disease often occurs alongside tooth decay and begins when bacteria in plaque build up (gingivitis). If left untreated, gingivitis progresses to periodontitis, a more advanced, destructive form of gum disease.

According to the Academy of General Dentistry (AGD), people with oral health diseases are at a higher risk for heart attacks, while the American Academy of Periodontology reports that individuals with periodontal disease (a more advanced and destructive form of gum disease) are nearly twice as likely to have heart disease than those who don't. Several experts in the field of dental health came together to create a consensus report, published in the Journal of Periodontology and the American Journal of Cardiology, which touches upon the link between oral health and heart disease. One of the main takeaways from the report is that chronic gum disease is a risk factor for coronary artery disease.

Image source: sheknows.com

While the jury is still out when it comes to finding a definite link between tooth decay and gum disease, and heart health, individuals who are concerned about their overall health should not neglect to pay attention to their teeth. Brushing teeth with a fluoride toothpaste at least twice a day, flossing, quitting smoking, and paying regular visits to the dentist can help prevent tooth decay and gum disease and their complications.

Domenick Coletti DDS, MD is one of only 60 oral and maxillofacial surgeous inducted into the American College of Surgeons. For more articles on oral health, subscribe to this blog.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Gauging the Risks for Tooth Loss

Although traditionally thought as an effect of aging, tooth loss or edentulism can take place at any age. Everyone from children to adults is at risk of tooth loss, in particular when oral hygiene habits are severely lacking.

Previous generations have been prone to tooth loss at the onset of senior years and recent trends suggest that this pattern may repeat itself among older adults today due to the prevalence of gum disease and high sugar diets, accompanied by poor dental hygiene.



Images source: howstuffworks.com

Risks for tooth loss, however, vary significantly with age. For instance, while tooth decay and poor dental hygiene and healthcare are universal factors afflicting the general population, other causes are functions of the different stages of a person's life. Children, for instance, risk losing baby teeth prematurely to injury or neglect, whereas adults are more likely to increase risks of tooth loss due to smoking or serious health conditions like heart disease and diabetes.

In addition, poor dental health habits also contribute to the risks of edentulism. Some adults and children neglect to go to the dentist as needed out of either financial constraints or fears of the resultant pain accompanying the procedure.



Image source: businessinsider.com.au

The fundamentals of keeping teeth health for a lifetime include ingrained habitual good dental hygiene and regular dental checkups and recommended procedures. Preventing tooth loss is a lifelong commitment that can pay off well into the golden years.

Dr. Domenick Coletti is one of the head surgeons at Central Maryland Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. Visit this website for more on the practice's many oral health procedures.