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Our Santa Monica dental office specializes in personalized dental care of the highest quality. We provide family, cosmetic, implant and restorative dentistry to patients of all ages in a friendly and caring environment.

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News in Dentistry

October 9, 2014 - Prescriptions for pain medication have increased over 300 percent in the last 20 years. The Center for Disease Control has declared fatal overdoses from opioid painkillers a nationwide epidemic. In response, the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) recently tightened controls over the prescription of such pain medications. The prescription can no longer be phoned into a pharmacy and a patient examination to determine what's causing the pain is recommended.

August 15, 2014 - If your child participates in contact sports, such as football, consider this: Athletes who wear over-the-counter mouthguards are twice as likely to suffer concussions than those who wear custom made mouthguards. A well fitting mouthguard helps to absorb shock, stabilize the head and neck and limit movement caused by a direct jaw hit. It seems essential to your football player's brain safety.

June 29, 2014 - Should you routinely get your wisdom teeth removed? Not necessarily...some people have enough room for their wisdom teeth and those teeth can function like any other molars. Typically, it is recommended to extract wisdom teeth if they cause chronic pain and/or infection, become decayed, show pathology such as cysts, or adversely affect the adjacent teeth. Contrary to popular belief, there is little evidence that wisdom teeth push the other teeth and cause crowding in areas like the lower front teeth.

May 7, 2014 - The first toothbrush was from the Tang Dynasty (619-907 AD) in China. It was made from the bristles of hogs. Since then, we've evolved to "smart" brushes that can wirelessly relay how effectively you're brushing to a smartphone app!

March 1, 2014 - DNA found in the tartar of 1000-year-old teeth will provide researchers with a wealth of information. Apparently the tartar (or calculus) acts like concrete protecting the integrity of the DNA! Researchers have determined that the bacteria which causes gum (periodontal) disease has not changed much in the last 1000 years. They've also identified a gene in this ancient bacteria that allows resistance to antibiotics - amazing since antibiotics were not discovered until 1928!

February 16, 2014 - For the first time, researchers have shown a DIRECT correlation between the health of your gums and the plaque that builds up in your blood vessels leading to heart disease. The study was conducted at Columbia University's School of Public Health and recently published in the Journal of the American Heart Association. So - plan to get your teeth cleaned and gums examined today!

January 18, 2014 - Last year the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) issued new guidelines stating that teeth cleanings AND dental x-rays are safe for pregnant women. Due to the hormonal changes in pregnancy, they encourage pregnant wormen to seek dental care during their pregancies.

November 21, 2013 - Investigators have discovered a 6500-year-old human jawbone containing a tooth with a beeswax dental filling! The tooth contained a vertical crack. This discovery is the earliest direct evidence of using a filling to relieve tooth sensitivity or pain.

September 28, 2013 - Moms and dads, beware of sticky fruit snacks, such as Fruit Roll Ups. Many of these "healthy fruit" items list corn syrup and sugar as main ingredients. Many don't even contain the particular fruit shown on its packaging. For example, "Top Secret Strawberry Fruit Roll Ups" are not made with strawberry at all; its fruit component is pear concentrate. That aside, it's the stickiness that's the problem. The stickier the sugary snack, the longer it will remain on your child's teeth, the greater the chance that a cavity will form. 

July 14, 2013 - Crowns fall out for various reasons: There is leakage in the crown causing a cavity underneath. The tooth itself may not have the ideal shape to hold a crown in place. The cement has washed out after many years. The bite is incorrect leading to dislodgement of the crown. Maybe you simply bit on a sticky, hard candy and opened suddenly? Regardless, contact a dentist within a few days to ensure the best chances of being able to recement the crown.

April 30, 2013 - Who put the WISDOM in wisdom teeth?

The terminology dates back to the time of the Greeks and Romans. Hippocrates called wisdom teeth "sophronisteres," from the Greek sophron, meaning prudent. In Rome, they were referred to as "dentes sapientiae," translated it means teeth of wisdom. In Spanish speaking countries, wisdom teeth are called "muela de juicio," meaning molar of judgement. Since wisdom teeth are the last to develop, usually in late adolescence or early adulthood, this is the time when a person begins to develop good judgement and wisdom!

March 24, 2013 - Heard the ads for the $599 implant? Or perhaps you've seen billboard advertising for the $399 implant? Well, not all implants are created equal. The implant manufacturers that we recommend represent only a handful out of the hundreds of implant companies in existence. These few manufacturers have been around for many years and, more importantly, have a likelihood of continuing to be in business. They produce high quality implants, warranty their products, and have considerable research and development commitment to their products.

February 18, 2013 - Do you snore? Do you suffer from excessive daytime sleepiness? You may have obstructive sleep apnea. Sleep apnea has been linked to heart attacks and strokes, even car accidents. A sleep study test is the first step to diagnose whether you have this condition.

How much is an old crown worth? Elvis Presley's old crown reportedly sold in the high six figures. Truly a crown fit for The King!

January 13, 2013 - Researchers in Japan have recently developed an artificial, transparent tooth enamel that can be used to repair damaged enamel. They estimate it will be at least five years before this can be put to practical use.

November 17, 2012 - Advances in local anesthesia  

Hate the injection? Researchers are working on a nasal spray that will provide anesthesia to the upper teeth. Imagine that! Other researchers are working on adding sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) into the local anesthetic solution to increase the pH. It's thought that the sting of the injection is partly from the acidity of the solution. So by raising the pH, the injection will be more comfortable.

October 21, 2012 - Data from the CDC (Centers for Disease Control) and the U.S. Dept. of Treasury indicate that per capita cigarette consumption has declined more than 40 percent in recent years! That's the good news...The not-so-good news is that per capita consumption of noncigarette smoked tobacco products (pipe tobacco and cigars) has increased a whopping 97 percent!

September 13, 2012 - A recent study revealed no significant risk of oral cancer in patients who use mouthwash on a daily basis, even mouthwashes containing alcohol.

August 19, 2012 - The FDA has reissued a warning that benzocaine gels or liquids should not be used in children under age 2. Used to relieve teething pain, benzocaine is found in products such as Anbesol, Hurricane, Orajel, Baby Orajel, and Orabase. Benzocaine can cause a serious and potentially life threathening disease called methemoglobinemia.

July 2012 - Researchers are working on a simple, low cost saliva test to detect malignant oral cancers and pancreatic cancer. The successful development of such tests could mark a breakthrough in the screening and treatment of these diseases, particularly in the difficult to detect pancreatic cancer. Who knew saliva contained such valuable information?

Teresa K. Yang, D.D.S. General Dentistry
1510 10th Street
Santa Monica, CA 90401

(310) 458-0501