Wednesday, June 18, 2008

No Bisphenol A in Dental Sealants

There has been much media buzz lately about the chemical in plastics known as Bisphenol-A. Found in a variety of household products it has been linked to infertility, cancer, behavioral disorders and the like. This evidence is tenuous at best but cause for concern is being raised by scientific, health, and government institutions. Unfortunately many media reports have indicated that Bisphenol A can be found in dental materials, most notably sealants. Unfortunately the media tends to be it's own source for things and such misinformation can be endlessly Googled and repeated by well meaning, albeit lazy journalists.
Current dental sealants do not contain Bisphenol-A and have not for many years. Below is a quote from a blog on Ultradent"s website (A popular and respected dental material company whose sealants and bonding agents I have used for years)

Results from testing for Bisphenol-A

Dear Colleagues
The media continues to address the health concerns over Bisphenol-A. As is often the case, they serve an important role in bringing public safety issues to light. To support you in communicating with your patients about these concerns, we want to provide you with additional third-party evidence that our own sealants are void of such contaminants.

After testing through a well-respected laboratory, we received tests results that indicate a 0.00000% presence of Bisphenol-A in our UltraSeal XT plus. This is the same type of test we conducted over 12 years ago – the results remain the same. Our sealant is alternatively composed of Bis-GMA, like many currently available dental sealants. Despite this, I encourage others to undergo the same testing to bring confidence back to clinicians and patients alike.


Thursday, June 5, 2008

Is My Headache TMJ ?

The Temporalis Muscle is a Common Location of "TMJ Headache"
I have many patients present in my office with a history of headaches. Often these headaches are a manifestation of Temporomandibular Disorder, commonly called TMJ. Patients rarely make the connection between their mouth and this head pain. Unfortunately many physicians do not either and patients can go for years suffering from this pain which most of the time can be easily managed with an NTI Device (go to my website to find out how). Patients usually attribute their pain to "tension" headaches or sinus trouble. So how can you tell if your headaches are TMJ related? Most important is the location of the pain. Headaches with TMJ are mostly due to muscle fatigue and pain of the temporalis muscle, which can be seen in the picture above. This powerful muscle fans out the side of your skull from your temples to nearly the top of your head.This pain is simply from overuse of the muscle while asleep due to grinding or clenching of the teeth. Temporalis muscle pain with lesser TMJ pain in other structures often results when a patients clenches more than they grind. In my experience many patients with temporal (i.e. side of the head) headaches suffer from pain due to clenching and grinding.
Nighttime clenching can also aggravate migraine headaches and the NTI device is FDA approved as an adjunctive migraine treatment as well. 

UPDATE - We have now connected with the physical therapy team at St. Agnes Hospital who have experts in TMJ Disorder management. Physical therapy is an important part of TMJ treatment for many patients.
The NTI Device Reduces Nighttime Clenching

UPDATE - The popular and effective NTI devices are now being made by Keller Labs. They are made out of a durable and stain resistant material that should last for years. They even make a soft liner version that is ideal for patients with crowded teeth, crowns, or veneers.

Hi and welcome to my oral health blog. This blog is linked to my website  and is a place for the latest information all things dental. It may also include office updates and news of interest to our patients here in Linthicum, Maryland.