Alarming facts about this killer!

The Oral Health Foundation reported this month that there were 8,337 cases of mouth cancer diagnosed in the UK people in the UK last year.
This shows an alarming rate of increase in recent years and completely contradicts the success of tackling the incidence of other well-known cancers.
The dental profession is uniquely and ideally placed in early stage diagnosis of this potentially life threatening disease and all dental professionals should be always vigilant.

Oral Health and Ageing

Importance of oral health in old age

A Link is claimed between oral health and frailty in old age.

This link was recently  highlighted in the Journal of Gerondontology which published the research findings.

Poor dental health and hygiene can lead to decay and pain and thus an inability to eat a properly balanced diet.

This can have detrimental long term health consequences and accelerate frailty in the elderly.

A stressful profession!

Dentists under stress

A recent report in the British Dental Journal confirms that dentistry is indeed
a highly stressful occupation. Dentists admitted to regularly experiencing
high stress levels with the main reasons being ever increasing levels of regulation
and fear of legal action from dissatisfied patients.

The report suggests that potential solutions to this serious problem must go further
than adopting stress management strategies and should extend to changing the nature
of the working environment.

Reference BDJ volume226, pages40–49 (11 January 2019) |

New CPD Rules

Changes to CPD from 1 January 2018

The verifiable CPD requirements are changing as follows:

The CPD requirement for dentists will increase from 75 to 100 hour over the 5 year cycle.
The requirement for hygienists, therapists, clinical dental technicians and orthodontic therapists will increase from 50 to 75 hours per cycle.
There is no change for dental nurses and technicians, who will remain at 50 hours per cycle.

The requirement to keep records of non- verifiable CPD will be abolished.

Squid Ink in Dentistry


Researchers at the University of California, San Diego have published a paper in the
Journal of Dental Research describing a non-invasive method to measure pocket depth
using ultrasound following the patient having been given a mouthwash containing squid ink.
The ink contains nanoparticles which absorb light. The ultrasound is used to map tooth pockets
and would replace the traditional manual probe.
The technique has undergone animal testing but human clinic trials are at the planning stage.

Junk Food Advertising Ban


New rules governing the advertising of various junk foods, came into effect on 1 July 2017.
Advertising high fat, salt or sugar (HFSS) food or drink products is now banned where children
make up over 25% of the audience.

Dental professionals and health campaigners will welcome the rules which have been
introduced by the Committee of Advertising Practice in order to protect the health of future generations.


Dental Nurse News: Genes and tooth decay

Bad teeth may be a family trait.

Research at the University of Zurich has identified a gene complex which determines the formation of tooth enamel.
Genetic irregularities as well as causing disease can also affect the formation of tissue such as tooth enamel.
This means that some patients can be genetically predisposed to tooth decay meaning that “bad teeth” could potentially “run in the family”
Interesting point for dental professionals to bear in mind!

Dental Nurse News: Stem cell discovery could radically change dental treatment

A radical alternative to fillings!

A novel and ground breaking discovery has been made at King’s College London.
Researchers at the Dental Institute of King’s College London have found a way using stems cells to grow new dentine.
The stems cells in the pulp in the tooth can be utilised to create a new protective layer of dentine.
The new dentine could be encouraged to form in large cavities as an alternative to fillings.
The drug that was used to stimulate the living stem cell renewal was one used to treat Alzheimer’s

Dental Nurse News: A&E used by patients with toothache

Misunderstanding of the role of A&E

A recent study by Newcastle University which also used data from the British Dental Association has identified
an enormous discrepancy in government figures which hide the true extent to which A&E resources are being
“miss-applied” in dealing with patients suffering from toothache. The study shows that the government statistics
are incorrect by a staggering factor of 10 or 1000%.

The BDA uses the term “systematic under-reporting” to explain why only 14,500 cases were reported against
a probable actual figure of 135,000. Clearly this demonstrates at best a public misunderstanding of the role
of A&E facilities or at worst a gross abuse of the health system.


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