Oral Cancer, Concerns and what we look for.

Oral cancer is divided into two categories – those occurring in the oral cavity (your lips, the inside of your lips and cheeks, teeth, gums, the front two-thirds of your tongue and the floor and roof of your mouth) and those occurring in the oropharynx (middle region of the throat, including the tonsils and base of the tongue).

Early detection may result in better treatment outcomes and may help keep you or someone you love from becoming one of the 10,030 people whose lives may be claimed this year by the disease. The 5-year survival rate of those diagnosed is approximately 60 percent.

Where Can Oral Cancer Appear?

The oral cavity includes your lips, cheek lining, gums, front part of your tongue, floor of the mouth beneath the tongue and the hard palate that makes up the roof of your mouth. The throat (pharynx) starts at the soft part of the roof of your mouth and continues back into your throat. It includes the back section of your tongue, as well as the base where the tongue attaches to the floor of your mouth.

What Are the Symptoms of Oral Cancer?

It’s important to be aware of the following signs and symptoms and to see your dentist if they do not disappear after two weeks.

  • A sore or irritation that doesn’t go away
  • Red or white patches
  • Pain, tenderness or numbness in mouth or lips
  • A lump, thickening, rough spot, crust or small eroded area
  • Difficulty chewing, swallowing, speaking or moving your tongue or jaw
  • A change in the way your teeth fit together when you close your mouth

Some people complain of a sore throat, feeling like something is caught in their throat, numbness, hoarseness or a change in voice. If you have any of these symptoms, let your dentist know, especially if you’ve had them for two weeks or more.

What Are the Risk Factors for Oral Cancer?

Research has identified a number of factors that increase the risk of developing oral cancers. Men are twice more likely to get oral cancer than women. Smokers and excessive alcohol drinkers older than 50 are the most at-risk.

The human papilloma virus (HPV), which is sexually transmitted, has also been associated with throat cancers at the back of the mouth. HPV-positive head and neck cancers are related to the rise in throat cancers in non-smoking adults. HPV-positive head and neck cancers typically develop in the throat at the base of the tongue and in the folds of the tonsils making them difficult to detect. Although people with HPV-positive cancers have a lower risk of dying or having recurrence than those with HPV-negative cancers, early diagnosis is associated with the best outcomes. Regular dental check-ups that include an examination of the entire head and neck can be vital in detecting cancer early.

How Can My Dentist Help Detect Oral Cancer Early?

During your regular exam, your dentist will ask you about changes in your medical history and whether you’ve been having any new or unusual symptoms.

Then, your dentist will check your oral cavity. This includes your lips, cheek lining, gums, the front part of your tongue, the floor of your mouth and the roof of your mouth. Your dentist will also examine your throat (pharynx) at the soft part at the roof of your mouth, including your tonsils, the back section of your tongue and where your tongue attaches to the bottom of your mouth. The dentist will then feel your jaw and neck for any lumps or abnormalities.

What Happens If My Dentist Finds Something Suspicious?

Stay calm. Your dentist won’t be able to tell right away if what he or she is looking at is cancerous, so he or she may refer you for testing. Your dentist might also reexamine you a week or two later to see if questionable spots are healing on their own before recommending additional follow-up. Together, you and your dentist can create the best strategy for diagnosis, treatment and prevention.

What Can I Do to Prevent Oral Cancer?

The most important thing is to be aware of your risk factors. Men are twice more likely to get oral cancer as they get older. If you smoke, drink excessive amounts of alcohol or have a poor diet, changing these habits can decrease the chances of developing oral cancer.

Certain strains of HPV can also put you at risk. The CDC recommends that 11- to 12-year-old boys and girls get two doses of HPV vaccine to prevent cervical and other less common genital cancers. It is possible that the HPV vaccine might also prevent head and neck cancers – since the vaccine prevents an initial infection with HPV types that can cause head and neck cancers – but the studies currently underway do not yet have sufficient data to say whether the HPV vaccine will prevent these cancers.

If you have had oral cancer before, you may be more likely to develop it again so keep up those regular visits.

 

Article curated from: Mouth Healthy – American Dental Association

Dental implant with slow-release drug reservoir reduces infection risk!

At Doctor Krape Cosmetic & Specialized Dentistry we work hard to stay on top of all the latest technology and treatment procedures in order to offer you every option available for you and your family’s dental health.  After all “Your Smile means everything to us!”
When it comes to choosing the best dentist in the north palm beach county area, we would love the opportunity to meet you and show you around our warm and friendly office where you will feel like family.
  • We welcome patients looking for second opinions and best of all, they are free!
  • We are also open Saturdays and are available 24/7 for Emergency situations.
In the latest news, scientists have developed a dental implant containing a reservoir for the slow release of drugs. Laboratory tests in which the reservoir slowly released a strong antimicrobial agent showed that the new implant can prevent and eliminate bacterial biofilms – a major cause of infection associated with dental implants.

Lead author Dr. Kaat De Cremer, from the Centre of Microbial and Plant Genetics at KU Leuven, explains that the reservoir in the implant can be filled by removing the cover screw. She adds that:

“The implant is made of a porous composite material, so that the drugs gradually diffuse from the reservoir to the outside of the implant, which is in direct contact with the bone cells. As a result, the bacteria can no longer form a biofilm.”

In general, bacteria have two life-forms. In one, the planktonic state, they exist as single, independent cells, and in the other, they aggregate in a slime-enclosed mass called a biofilm.

Published:

Dental-sealant program could prevent most cavities, lower treatment costs in vulnerable children

There is much talk about in school programs that could have such a profound effect on cavity prevention and even long term dental health of children. Dr. Krape Cosmetic & Specialized Dentistry has always encouraged parents to consider dental sealants as a must for their children at such critical development ages. Please don’t put this off. Schedule an appointment for your children today! Call: 561-257-2580.

Dental Sealants prevent cavities

Close-up of little boy opening his mouth wide during inspection of oral cavity

Research shows dental sealants to shield the back teeth could prevent up to 80 percent of cavities in school-aged children. They are quick, easy, and painless to apply – yet according to a new CDC Vital Signs report, about 60 percent of school children ages 6-11 years don’t get dental sealants.

Dental sealants are a thin coating that is painted on teeth to protect them from cavities. One way to provide sealants to more children is by increasing their access to school-based sealant programs (SBSPs).

SBSPs are especially important for children from low-income families because such children are less likely to receive dental care. These programs target schools with a high percentage of children eligible for free or reduced-cost meal programs. As a result, SBSPs provide sealants to children who are at higher risk for cavities and less likely to receive preventive care.

“Many children with untreated cavities will have difficulty eating, speaking, and learning,” said CDC Director Tom Frieden, M.D., M.P.H. “Dental sealants can be an effective and inexpensive way to prevent cavities, yet only 1 in 3 low-income children currently receive them. School-based sealant programs are an effective way to get sealants to children.”

School-based dental sealant programs are high impact and low cost

Sealants provided in school settings are effective. Recent studies found that dental sealants prevent 80 percent of cavities for two years after application and continue to protect against 50 percent of cavities for up to 4 years after placement. They can be retained in the mouth for as long as nine years.

Key findings from the report include:

  • About 43 percent of 6- to 11-year-old children had a dental sealant. Low-income children were 20 percent less likely to have sealants than higher-income children.
  • School-age children without sealants have almost three times more cavities than children with sealants.
  • Applying sealants in school-based programs to the nearly 7 million low-income children who don’t have them could save up to $300 million in dental treatment costs.

CDC supporting states to start or increase school-based dental sealant programs

State officials play an important role in increasing children’s access to school-based dental sealant programs in their states. Officials can:

  • Target school-based sealant programs to the areas of greatest need in their state.
  • Track the number of schools and children participating in SBSPs.
  • Implement policies that deliver SBSPs in the most cost-effective manner.
  • Help connect schools with health departments, Medicaid and CHIP offices, community health centers, and dental professionals in the community.

CDC currently provides funding to 21 state public health departments to coordinate and implement school-based and school-linked sealant programs that target low-income children and those who live in rural settings.

The Vital Signs report can be viewed here.

For more information on SBSPs, dental sealants, and CDC’s work, visit: www.cdc.gov/oralhealth.

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

Gingivitis, eventual Periodontitis will cost you your overall health and $…

Dr. Krape Cosmetic & Specialized Dentistry of North Palm Beach Florida, understands the seriousness of oral neglect. Over many years he has observed the long term ill-effects of poor oral hygiene and what it can do to the entire body when it comes to much more serious and life threatening concerns.

Gingivitis is one of the most common signs that eventually leads to a much more serious concern of Periodontitis. Note what the following article and study published by: Applied and Environmental Microbiology on August 12th reveals below.

The damage of advanced periodontal disease.

The damage of advanced periodontal disease.

Investigators chart microbial ecology of gingivitis, periodontitis

Gingivitis, a common and mild form of gum disease can progress to periodontitis, a more serious infection that damages the soft tissue of the gums and sometimes even destroys the bone supporting the teeth. An international team of researchers and clinicians has charted the microbial ecology of the mouth at all stages of this progression, in nearly 1,000 women in Malawi. This work is laying a foundation of knowledge that could lead to better oral health. The research is published in Applied and Environmental Microbiology, a journal of the American Society for Microbiology.

The investigators used high-throughput sequencing of the 16S ribosomal RNA (rRNA) gene to take the census of the oral microbiomes. Among much else, they found that a small number of species were associated with periodontitis, but not gingivitis, including members of the genera, Prevotella, Treponema, and Selemonas. “Our findings confirm that periodontitis cannot be considered simply an advanced stage of gingivitis, even when only considering supragingival plaque,” said first author Liam Shaw, a PhD student at University College London, United Kingdom.

Periodontitis is diagnosed by measuring the depth of the pockets in the gums next to the teeth. “But diagnosing periodontitis visually is impossible and it doesn’t usually give any symptoms until it has developed so far that teeth become mobile, which is very late for any treatment,” said coauthor Ulla Harjunmaa, a dentist with a master’s degree in international Health, who is a PhD student at the Center for Child Health Research, University of Tampere and Tampere University Hospital, Finland.

Diagnosis requires specially trained dental professionals and expensive equipment, which are seldom available in developing countries, said Harjunmaa. But among other things, in the future, this research may lead to an inexpensive and rapid point-of-care test, based on distinguishing the two conditions’ microbiomes. “The research made it possible to tell which differences in bacteria were linked specifically to the deepening of dental pockets – which causes loss of teeth – rather than just to bleeding gums,” explained Shaw.

“We’re not the first to do this sort of research into periodontal disease, but our study is the largest to be done in such a setting,” said Shaw. “There is a great need to find new solutions to prevent these problems everywhere, but especially in this kind of setting.” He added that oral infections are very common in Malawi, since there is little awareness about oral health and prevention, and little treatment available.

Some of the techniques used in the research may have wide applications, said Shaw. “Where diseases can have multiple severities and clinical features that are also found in non-disease (like bleeding gums in periodontitis), this kind of modeling will be increasingly important in microbiome research.”

Periodontal disease is a major public health problem associated with oral bacteria. In developed nations, approximately half of adults are thought to have moderate periodontal disease, with another 7-15 percent having advanced disease, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Additionally, periodontal disease is thought to be a risk factor for cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and other chronic health conditions. Treating gum disease could reduce healthcare costs, as well as hospitalizations, according to a study published in the August, 2014 American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

“The best way to prevent periodontal disesases is by proper tooth brushing twice a day combined with flossing once a day,” said Harjunmaa. For smokers, quitting is also critically important to prevention, she said.

 

Article: Distinguishing the Signals of Gingivitis and Periodontitis in Supragingival Plaque: A Cross-Sectional Cohort Study in Malawi, Liam Shaw, Ulla Harjunmaa, Ronan Doyle, Simeon Mulewa, Davie Charlie, Ken Maleta, Robin Callard, A. Sarah Walker, Francois Balloux, Per Ashorn and Nigel Klein, Applied and Environmental Microbiology, doi: 10.1128/AEM.01756-16, published online 12 August 2016.

Distinguishing the Signals of Gingivitis and Periodontitis in Supragingival Plaque: A Cross-Sectional Cohort Study in Malawi

Periodontal disease ranges from gingival inflammation (gingivitis) to the inflammation and loss of tooth-supporting tissues (periodontitis). The bacterial composition of supragingival plaque across a range of periodontal severities has not previously been explored with high-throughput sequencing. Furthermore, quantitative modelling of bacterial abundances in supragingival plaque as a function of both gingivitis and periodontitis has not previously been attempted.

We assessed a cross-sectional cohort of 962 Malawian women for periodontal disease and used 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing (V5-V7 region) to characterise the bacterial composition of supragingival plaque samples. Associations between bacterial relative abundances and gingivitis/periodontitis were investigated by using negative binomial models, adjusting for epidemiological factors. We also examined bacterial co-occurrence networks to assess community structure.

The main differences in supragingival plaque composition were associated more with gingivitis than periodontitis, including higher bacterial diversity and greater abundance of particular species. However, even after controlling for gingivitis, the presence of subgingival periodontitis was associated with an altered supragingival plaque. A small number of species were associated with periodontitis but not gingivitis, including members ofPrevotella, Treponema, and Selemonas, supporting a more complex disease model than linear progression following on from gingivitis. Co-occurrence networks of periodontitis-associated taxa clustered according to periodontitis across all gingivitis severities. Species including Filifactor alocis and Fusobacterium nucleatum were central to this network, supporting their role in co-aggregation of periodontal biofilms during disease progression.

Our findings confirm that periodontitis cannot be considered simply an advanced stage of gingivitis, even when only considering supragingival plaque.

IMPORTANCE. Periodontal disease is a major public health problem associated with oral bacteria. While earlier studies focused on a small number of ‘periodontal pathogens’, it is now accepted that the whole bacterial community may be important. However, previous high-throughput marker gene sequencing studies of supragingival plaque have largely focused on high-income populations with good oral hygiene without including a range of periodontal disease severities. Our study includes a large number of low-income participants with poor oral hygiene and a wide range of severities. We are able to quantitatively model bacterial abundances as a function of both gingivitis and periodontitis, which has not previously been attempted. A signal associated with periodontitis remains after controlling for gingivitis severity, supporting the concept that even when only considering supragingival plaque, periodontitis is not simply an advanced stage of gingivitis. This suggests the future possibility of diagnosing periodontitis based on bacterial occurrences in supragingival plaque.