When we talk about our patients caring for their mouths, we ALWAYS discuss brushing and flossing. Most of my patients admit to not flossing, and brushing is something they do, but many struggle with doing a good job. When we think about the mouth as a whole, 100% of the mouth is made up of soft and hard tissues. 22% of the mouth is teeth, and the remaining 78% is soft tissue. Only about half of the tooth surface is exposed, the other half is touching another tooth on each side. So in reality, if our patients are only brushing they are only cleaning 11% of the mouth, if they are brushing and flossing then they are still only cleaning 22% of the mouth. What about the other 78% of the mouth? Are the soft tissues not important?
Hygienists, myself included, are considered, "the keeper of the gums." So when I think that the majority of my patients are caring for only 11% of their mouth, I can't help but to cringe. I still believe that brushing and flossing are very important in mechanically removing debris from the mouth. However, brushing with toothpaste and flossing, are not killing the bacteria, which is the real problem. Cleaning the areas where the bacteria (and other pathogens) are hiding, can be difficult for patients to reach. I recommend that every patient leaves with some sort of rinse, and my best recommendation is OraCare. As you can see on this site, activated chlorine dioxide has many great properties, including: killing bacteria, viruses, fungi, reducing VSC's, and breaking up biofilm. The best part of using this cleanser is that it can access all the nooks, crannies, and crevices that patients are missing on a regular basis, providing them with the healthier, cleaner mouth that we want them to have!
The Oral Cancer Foundation tells us that, "Close to 49,750 Americans will be diagnosed with oral oropharynegeal cancer this year. It will cause over 9,750 deaths, killing roughly 1 person per hour, 24 hours per day. Of those 49,750 newly diagnosed individuals, only slightly more than half will be alive in 5 years. (Approximately 57%)."
These statistics are mind boggling, as dental professionals I encourage all of us to make sure we do everything we can to help with early detection. Being sure to perform an oral cancer screening at each dental appointment, and informing patients about risk factors that include not just tobacco and alcohol, but also HPV. The high death rate associated with this cancer is not the result of a poor diagnosis. It generally is a result of late diagnosis. Early screening is the life-saving difference. We are the only profession looking for this deadly cancer. Your general practice MD isn't looking, your eye doctor isn't looking, your OB-GYN isn't looking, this is OUR cancer. We must screen for early detection.
Oral Cancer is a part of a larger group referred to as head and neck cancers, have you ever treated someone who was undergoing chemotherapy and radiation to these areas? The treatment can often feel worse than the cancer itself. Their mouths become increasingly dry, and just taking a sip of water can be difficult. Speaking becomes such a painful experience that many avoid it at all costs. These side effects are just from the radiation. When chemotherapy gets introduced, painful ulcers can appear in the mouth. This can happen with chemo for any type of cancer, not just oral cancer.
Comfort for cancer patients is essential in the battle against this disease. Having something that can help with the side effects of treatment is one of the best options that we can offer patients once they are diagnosed. Many cancer centers are beginning to carry OraCare to help maintain a better quality and provide comfort of life during this difficult time. Listen to cancer survivor Eva Grayzel tell her story about her battle with Oral Cancer.
We all know that bacteria, viruses, and fungi are all living and multiplying in the mouth. That's why we spray, we wrap, and we wipe down all surfaces in our operatories, to reduce the risk of cross contamination. But the moment we place the cavitron or handpiece in the mouth we know that we are creating dental aerosols that begin floating around the room. Visible debris on the tray or chair is one thing, but it is what you don't see that can impact you and your patient's health. The meticulous effort that we put into cleaning everything in sight, is easily compromised with germs floating in the air. As dental professionals we obviously take precautions to reduce the spread of germs by wearing long sleeves, masks, and gloves, but what to do we do when the microbes lingering in the air settle on our clothes and skin? Doesn't it make sense to try to disinfect the mouth before we get started with any procedure?
When you sit down at the doctor's office to get your flu shot, they always swab the skin with alcohol to disinfect the surface of the skin. They know that there is a possibility of introducing dangerous microbes into the blood stream. We know we can do this in the mouth as well!
Pre-rinsing every patient before you get started will ultimately raise your standard of care , protect your patients, and protect you. Bacteria and fungi will cause issues, but viruses can really make you sick. The flu virus is the perfect example, it is spread via droplets from the mouth that are breathed in either via the nose or the mouth, being only 12-18 inches from their face mouth for at least 30 plus minutes, makes us the perfect new host for this virus to flourish! The reason many offices are choosing OraCare as their pre-rinse of choice is because of it's unique abilities to kill viruses , as well as bacteria, fungi, destroy biofilm, and neutralize VSC's. Does your office pre-rinse?
Valentine's Day just passed, and I am sure that some dedicated a lot of time finding the perfect gift for their significant other. But what if the gift you purchased could be a gift that keeps on giving all year around? No one wants to kiss someone with dragon breath, and most people who are trying to keep their breath fresh are going about it the wrong way.
Bacteria is not the only cause for bad breath, VSC's (Volatile sulfur compounds) play a major role. VSC's are actually the toxins that the bacteria releases. These toxins are what cause people to shield their face when they speak to you. Removing both the bacteria, and the VSC's are important when combating bad breath. This also promotes a healthier mouth.
If you are someone who struggles with bad breath, and are looking for a real solution, choose OraCare. OraCare's activated oral cleanser is going to not only freshen your breath, but remove what is really causing the problem, and help you achieve a fresher, cleaner, healthier mouth.
So if you are searching for the perfect gift for an upcoming event or occasion , let your special someone get a kiss without having to hold their breath.
Having good oral hygiene in braces is difficult, even for patients with great hygiene habits. I struggled with it myself as a teenager, with the bands, brackets, and wires, the task of flossing seemed impossible that I would just want to give up. It is easy to get frustrated because oral hygiene becomes more important than ever during ortho treatment, but also becomes more complex for patients.
Poor oral hygiene is very common with orthodontic treatment, and often times braces are removed because the mouth looks like this:
By providing patients a simple tool like OraCare during ortho, patients can turn their oral health towards the better. The patient in the above photo used OraCare for 5 weeks, twice a day. She was coming back to have a cleaning after her braces were removed. These were her results when she returned, just by adding OraCare into her regimen:
Because of results like these, orthodontists across the nation are recommending OraCare to their patients. Activated chlorine dioxide's ability to kill bacteria and destroy biofilm makes it an ideal choice for patients struggling with caring for their mouth.
The newest debate in dentistry is whether or not flossing is essential to great oral health. The Associated Press story that was released caused ripples throughout the dental community. There have been debates on many social media sites causing dental professionals to choose a side.
Do I think flossing is important?
YES! Are my patients flossing regularly? NO!
To me, the debate over whether flossing is beneficial is not the main issue, but more importantly, whether your patient is actively flossing at home. Getting your teeth flossed by a hygienist once every 6 months is not going to make any kind of significant difference. So if my patients are not going to floss, what can I offer them that will disrupt those microbes that cause things like gum disease? My solution to this problem has been OraCare. Brushing your teeth only gets about half of the tooth surface clean, we have to give patients something to kill these microbes that are living in the areas that they are not flossing. Activated chlorine dioxide in OraCare can kill these microbes providing a cleaner, healthier mouth.
Dental implants have quickly become the ideal replacement for lost or missing teeth, and just like natural teeth patients are struggling to care for them. Patients often believe that implants are indestructible, and that they are not susceptible to any diseases of the mouth. We know as dental professionals that this is far from the truth.
Caring for an implant begins before it is even placed. Doctors need a clear field prior to placement- bacteria, viruses, fungi, volatile sulfur compounds, and biofilm must be removed. Having a healthy field allows for optimal healing for the implant.
Once implants are placed, the patient's home care routine becomes increasingly important. Ideally, patients will, brush, floss, and use a water flosser. However, many patients don't floss and brush properly-or simply aren't flossing or brushing at all. As a hygienist, my recommendation is to add OraCare into their regimen for implant maintenance. I will continue to educate my patients on effective brushing and flossing in hopes that they will do so properly. I use OraCare because it can assist in accessing hard to reach areas where the problem causing pathogens thrive, that even the best brushers and flossers miss. Activated chlorine dioxide has the ability to kill bacteria, viruses, fungi, volatile sulfur compounds, and destroy biofilm. So I consider it the ideal choice for implants to keep them healthy, longer. Tissues that surround implant sites should appear pink and firm. Redness, bleeding, or other signs of infection can be indications of peri-implant mucositis and peri-implantitis. OraCare provides you with an additional proactive way to care for your patients with implants.
Trying to compare these two products is like comparing Apples to Oranges. Although both have good qualities they are completely different.
Let's start with what "stabilized chlorine dioxide" really is, which isn't chlorine dioxide at all. Chlorine dioxide is a gas, and what these products are using is actually sodium chlorite, which is classified as a salt. When you see this term, know that it is intentionally trying to mislead you, trying to make you believe that you will get similar results with a single solution, and this is just not the case. You do not get the same oxidizing properties as you do when you use activated chlorine dioxide. Take a look at this University of Iowa study:
Several of these products use "stabilized chlorine dioxide" to remove VSC's, but here you can really see the difference that OraCare can offer.
Activated chlorine dioxide is used in it's true gaseous form when you utilize OraCare. Common sense tells us that we can't hold gas in a bottle- it would just leak out very quickly! But when you utilize a two bottle system like OraCare, it allows you to create (activate) the gas each time for patient use and get superior results. There is a big difference, make sure you choose the right one for your patient.
If you would like additional information on this topic, check this out!
Truly, I believe that very few, if any, products can compare to the effectiveness of OraCare. It's unique ability to kill bacteria, as well as the additional pathogens that effect the oral cavity, offer many benefits to my patients. I love using OraCare because I get superior results with this rinse.
The key to a healthier mouth is removing all of these problem causing pathogens, and this extends beyond bacteria. Although I agree that bacteria is a very large contributing factor to many oral conditions, it is often not the only one causing problems for our patients. You must also take into consideration where these pathogens are living in the mouth. We try our best to access hard to reach areas and remove the pathogens mechanically (i.e brushing and flossing) but by adding the right rinse, our patients can reach the areas that those tools miss. Activated chlorine dioxide not only has a unique way of killing bacteria, but also kills viruses, fungi, and destroys the biofilm layer. There are so many benefits, with so many possibilities!
Additionally, rather than recommending several products that do one thing, why not recommend one product that does many things? Since activated chlorine dioxide has great effectiveness against these pathogens, it can be used for patients who have multiple issues going on at one time. By adding only one step, rather than multiple steps with multiple products, into their daily regimen, makes it easier for our patients. This helps with compliance and results in overall better patient health.
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OraCare's active ingredient Activated Chlorine Dioxide has the ability to kill bacteria, viruses, fungi, remove VSC's, and destroy unhealthy biofilm. The real question is, "which one of my patient's couldn't benefit from this rinse!?! "
Imagine the possibilities of use with a patient when you have a product that has all of the abilities that OraCare offers? I absolutely love using this with my patients that have Periodontal Disease, because it offers the long term oral care that those patients need, without staining, or additional calculus build up. But let's face it, most patients have some form of gum disease, and we know that gingivitis always precedes Periodontitis, It is not just those with Type IV Advanced Periodontitis that need OraCare, or a form of early intervention many patients do. The CDC actually estimates that 47.2% of adults 30 and older have some form of gum disease, and that only rises with increased age, jumping up to 70.1% of adults over the age of 65. My goal as a hygienist is to not let my patients become a part of this statistic.
OraCare can make a greater impact on your patients. I provide OraCare to my patients to help them achieve a healthier, and overall cleaner mouth. It is my job as a dental professional to make recommendations on their behalf to help them reach for optimal dental health. OraCare is a typical part of this recommendation. At minimum I have my patients using this daily, 2x's per day, 30 second activation, and 30-60 second rinse. This will help patients destroy the biofilm layer that harbors dangerous bacteria that causes gum disease, remove the VSC's, and other problem causing pathogens! Here is the video that everyone on the Webinar loved so much! It is listed below, also under the Video's tab on this site, as well as YouTube.