Dr Mark O'Donnell B.D.S
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Tuesday and Friday mornings
Orange you glad you visited the dentist?
A small study published in the September issue of the Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery has found that aromatherapy may be helpful in reducing dental anxiety.
The study used an orange fragrance. Some 56 people were studied, all of them needing surgery to remove an impacted wisdom tooth. Before surgery, they answered questions about their anxiety levels, and all suffered from moderate to high anxiety. They were divided into two groups for the purposes of the study.
Vital signs (blood pressure, pulse, breathing rate) were taken in the waiting room, and then several times during surgery. In the waiting room, vital signs were the same between the two groups. During surgery, one group was exposed to orange fragrance and the other was not. Those exposed to the fragrance had lower blood pressure, pulse and breathing rates during surgery than the control group.
Orange fragrance is said to regulate heartbeat, lower blood pressure and reduce anxiety. Other studies have found that orange or lavender fragrance can reduce anxiety in dental patients.
R U flossing? Text messages may improve oral health habits
Text messaging campaigns could help to improve oral health, says a study published in the August 4 online issue of the Journal of Public Health Dentistry.
Researchers enrolled 129 mothers of young children. About half of them received text messages for seven days. The messages asked about flossing habits, and also gave information about how to keep the teeth and mouth healthy.
The mothers answered a survey on oral health before and after the study began. Before the study, the mothers in both groups were similar in how often they flossed, as well as what they knew about oral health.
Afterwards, the mothers in the text group said they flossed more. Mothers in the text group also knew more about oral health. They did more to help keep their kids' mouths healthy. They were also less likely to give their children fizzy drinks or sugary snacks.
Coffee may fight gum disease
Coffee may have an unintended benefit, according to a study published in the August issue of the Journal of Periodontology. Researchers at Boston University’s Henry M. Goldman School of Dental Medicine determined that drinking coffee could lower the risk of periodontal (gum) disease.
The research indicated that coffee did not have a negative impact on periodontal health. The study also showed that drinking coffee regularly had a minimal impact on the number of teeth affected by bone loss.
To compile the data, a group of more of than 1,100 adult males aged 26 to 84 were studied. About 98% of the those who partook in the study were white. Other factors such as alcohol consumption, smoking, body mass index, overall health and oral health were also considered. This study was the first of its kind to explore the possible periodontal impact of drinking coffee.