Dentists Around the Globe

Dentists are oral health care practitioners who take care of their patients’ teeth, gums and mouth. Having adequate dental care protects the well being of an individuals’ entire body. Some examples of illnesses that take hold when individuals neglect the care of gums and teeth include clogged arteries, heart disease, diabetes complications, premature birth and chronic infections. Senior citizens that haven’t had appropriate oral health care over their lives are more likely to be missing all or some of their pearly whites. Dentistry around the world may differ somewhat than what American patients may be used to. But there are also more similarities than one might imagine. Here are some things to think about:

– America: U.S. dental docs have the initials DDS behind their names before they begin to practice this form of medicine. The DDS stands for Doctor of Dental Surgery. In order to become certified, these professionals complete four years of undergraduate school before enrolling in Dental College. During this graduate program, the doc-in-training will study physiology, anatomy, biology, chemistry and all there is to know about prevention, diagnostics and treatment in oral health. Hands-on hours in a clinical setting allow each student practitioner time to gather experience.

– Australia: Practitioners in Australia go through a similar educational training and certification process. This is watched over by the Australian Dental Council and Board of Australia. A doc must obtain licensing and registration through the Council and Board before hanging up his or her shingle. ADC examinations must be passed also.

– Brazil: Brazil’s dentistry is watched over by the Conselho Federal de Odontologia. There are 340,000 Brazilian dentists that are registered through this agency. There are both small private and public clinics as well as larger practices.

– Egypt: Egyptian practitioners study for five years at government schools of dentistry. These professionals must also belong to a syndicate in order to practice in this country.

– Hong Kong: Hong Kong’s dental college did not open until the 1980’s. Before that time, doctors had to travel to the Philippines in order to be certified in this field.

– Mexico: Mexico borders the United States and offers much lower prices in oral health care procedures. Crowns, root canals, general cleanings and cavity filling are much less expensive in Mexico. Many Americans do not have any type of insurance to cover the costs of these procedures so travel over the border to have them performed. The results of this practice are mixed. The standards in some Mexican clinics are not up to what one would hope.

The training of practitioners isn’t as rigorous; quick turnaround of laboratory products such as crowns may result in less than satisfactory outcomes. If a patient decides to cross the border for less expensive procedures, he or she must get great references in order to find the right doc.

Dentists around the world come in a variety of trainings and abilities. While there are lots of differences, there are also many similarities. Teeth, gums and the oral health care of individuals remain important globally.

Useful Tips When Choosing A Dentist

Dentists diagnose and then treat any problems associated with your gums, teeth, and related mouth disorders. They offer advice on how to take care of your gums and teeth as well as good dietary choices that would positively affect your oral health. Today, getting a good dental expert could be quite challenging because there are many of them practicing in any given location.

An ideal place to commence your search would be checking out with the Australian Dental Association (ADA) website. Most reputable dental experts in Australia would be members of the ADA. Additionally, for one to practice their dentistry in Australia, it is mandatory to be registered and accredited by the Dental Board of Australia and work within the provisions of the 2009 Health Practitioner Regulation National law Act.

To get a good dentist, we recommend the following broad steps or guidelines:

1. Obtaining Referrals and Recommendations

Perhaps the easiest place to begin your search would be consulting your general family physician. In all probability, the general physician will know of a good dental professional within the locality and could recommend one. Your friends, family members or colleagues at your place of work could also recommend suitable dentists.

Besides the help of those closes to you, the website run and managed by the National Registration and Accreditation Scheme (NRAC) would also be handy source of information because it would contains all the details of all the Australian Dental Council (ADC) members and their accreditation particulars. On top of that, the Australian Health Practitioners Regulation Authority (AHPRA) is the national government body that s mandated to regulate all medical professionals in Australia and certainly, you could confirm about your potential dental expert with them.

2. Calling the Office/Clinic and Confirming the Details

The next logical step would be placing a call to the dental clinic front-desk staff and verifying if that particular dental professional is currently taking on new or additional patients. Make use of that phone call to get a feel of the attitude of the facility’s staff:

• Did they keep you waiting indefinitely?

• Are they friendly and courteous?

• Did they sound on top of things/knowledgeable?

• Did the conversation make you desire to be served by them?

Take that time to also confirm some other vital details such as their office accessibility, availability of ample parking space, availability of public transport, their office hours, and range of fees. Are they available 24/7 and how do they handle emergencies? What forms of payment they accept and do they have any client payment plans?

3. The Actual Visit to the Office/Clinic

Lastly, take some time and physically visit the dental office in person. Was the place easy to locate and reach? Is the waiting room friendly and welcoming? How were you handled upon arrival? During this initial visit, let the dental expert enlighten you on how he or she approaches the treatment. Do they communicate with ease and also give you time to ask questions and express your fears? It is this introductory encounter and discussion that will guide you towards deciding if you’re comfortable with their services and most importantly, if you like that specific medical professional.

7 Key Questions to Ask When Choosing Your Cosmetic Clinic

If you’re thinking of having cosmetic treatment you need to find a clinic/practitioner you can trust. You want your treatment done in a sensitive way to make sure you keep a natural look, and you want it done safely and with the best products.

Sadly we all see examples of poor treatment either in magazines or on television, and walking down the local high street as well. But remember that most of your friends who are having treatment probably just look great, and no-one knows they have had any treatment.

In good hands treatments like Botox or dermal fillers can be very effective and safe, but all medical procedures involve possible risks of side-effects or complications, so you are better finding the best trained and most experienced practitioner.

How can you best decide which of these people you can trust with something as precious as your face?

I suggest you should be as questioning when it comes to choosing your clinic as you would when making any important decision. It makes sense to be cautious.

The following advice is based on my experience over the past 9 years running my own cosmetic clinic and meeting people who have had a bad experience elsewhere.

RULE NUMBER 1:

Assess Your Practitioner Before They Assess You!

Just as you wouldn’t buy the first house you see, you shouldn’t assume that the first person you see about your appearance is going to suit you best either.

You need to find out what you can about their background and skill, and decide how comfortable you feel with their advice and the way they talk to you.

So, here are my top suggestions:

1. “What Is Your Background/Qualification?”

In the UK you may find the answer ranges from a plastic surgeon, doctor, nurse, dentist, physiotherapist, pharmacist, beautician or none of the above. (Anywhere else in Europe and the USA no-one except medically qualified doctors can administer injectable cosmetic treatments.)

Which of these would you feel will have knowledge of dermatology and diagnosis of related medical conditions, anatomy, and the knowledge and experience needed to help should any problems arise after treatment?

Don’t be afraid to ask questions – I am very surprised how few people ask searching questions about me and my practice. No practitioner should be surprised to be asked these things and shouldn’t be offended – in fact the more offended or uncomfortable they are the more likely they’re not as qualified as you’d like!

2. “How Long Have You Been Doing These Treatments And What Specialist Training Do You Have?”

Good question and of some help, but remember that just because someone has been offering treatments for a long time is no guarantee that they’re good! As a trainer of practitioners from relative beginner to more experienced I’ve seen a very wide range of skills, even when they’ve been offering treatment for a long time.

Good training is essential, but do they have evidence that they have been assessed after they’ve had training? Remember that simply attending a training session is no guarantee that they are good.

3. “Are You A Member Of A Recognised Professional Body?”

In the UK this might include General Medical Council (GMC), British College of Aesthetic Medicine (BCAM), British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS), General Dental Council (GDC) or Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC).

You can always check with the relevant governing body if you are unsure of someone’s qualifications.

4. “How Many Treatments Have You Carried Out And What Complications Have There Been?”

For this one, you just have to see how the question is answered as they could say what they like, but it still gives you a guide. No-one with experience will say that there has never been a complication, and shouldn’t be ashamed of saying so, as these are a medical fact of life. If someone insists that they never see any problems then you might question them further. If they can quote their own rate of complications then you should be impressed – this means that they monitor their treatments and results and take their practice and education seriously.

5. “How Easily Can I Contact You Or See You If I Have A Query Or A Problem?”

Some practitioners can be extremely hard to get ahold of when it comes to asking for advice following a treatment, especially if there is a problem. This is distressing and stressful if you are the patient. For example if your practitioner travels to a clinic only once a month they will not be available very often, so make sure you feel comfortable that advice in person will be available if you need it. For a more invasive procedure you should be given a mobile phone number to ring in case you have any worries out of normal hours.

6. “If I Have A Problem That You Can’t Deal With What Would You Do?”

There may very rarely be a situation where more specialist advice is needed if an unusual problem arises. Someone who has thought this through will have a ready answer to this question, which might be that they have a more experienced contact in the profession, or the product manufacturer will provide back-up and advice (I know from experience that not all manufacturers are good at this)

7. “Which Products Do You Use And Why?”

I’m sure you have heard about the breast implant scandal where industrial grade ingredients were being used in medical products to make them very cheaply. This ended up making more profit for the clinics using them but had disastrous results for the patient.

There are plenty of people in the industry who believe that there will be problems in the future because untried and untested treatments are frequently being launched with little proof that they are safe over a long period.

There are at least 4 major brands of botulinum toxin (the main ones being Botox itself, Xeomin, Azzalure and Dysport) with other manufacturers, not always reliable, appearing around the world; there are several hundred different types of filler available in Europe. Cost for the different brands varies greatly, but a clinic using a cheaper brand may still charge the same as a clinic using a more expensive one. You need to be sure that your clinic chooses their recommended filler/s because they are effective and safe, not because they are the cheapest and maximise their profit!

A well-established company will have done a lot of research to back up their claims of safety, effect and durability, while others may only have tested their product on a small sample of people over a short period of time – I know which I’d rather be treated with!

The same is true with lasers – the cost to buy can range from £20,000 to £80,000 for equipment that is supposed to do the same job. Ask yourself why someone would buy such an expensive machine if a cheaper one would work as well and be as safe?

That’s the seven questions but here are a few other things to think about before making your final decision about who to trust:

“Are You Being Given A True Choice Of Available Treatments Or Just Being Advised To Have A Treatment That Your Practitioner Happens To Do?”

If you are asking for advice on a particular problem you want to be sure you are offered the full range of options so you can make a choice based on the risks, benefits and costs of any treatment. Ethical advice would also include suitable treatments not offered by your practitioner – GMC guidance lays down that this is an important part of the consent process.

For example it is now agreed that the most basic part of facial rejuvenation is to have enough volume or “lift” in the cheeks, but there will be practitioners who don’t have the skill to treat this area so will never offer it to you.

Positive points

If your practitioner is involved with research into new treatments, is asked for opinions on products by companies in the aesthetic field, or if they are appointed as a trainer by one of the big companies then this is a good sign that they are respected within their profession.

A good practitioner should make their own assessment of your situation and make suggestions to you that you might not have thought of rather than just give you the treatment you’ve asked for – they should be the expert advising you after all.

Don’t forget to use your gut instinct. If someone appears open and easy to talk to the chances are that they will listen and be sympathetic to you when it comes to treatment, and you’re more likely to be happy with the results; if they don’t appear to listen or explain things, don’t seem confident when asking your questions, or you just don’t feel comfortable with the clinic setting then you would do better to look elsewhere.

Negative points

If you’re not comfortable with the person during the consultation then go elsewhere.

Beware if the clinic you are in seems more concerned about selling you a treatment or series of treatments than listening to your concerns. Be especially wary if you are told that a certain price will only be valid if you book today, or if you are told that you could have additional surgery at the same time at a special rate. This is purely a sign that the clinic works on commission and may care more about its profit than your well-being.

My final piece of advice

In the end, there is no harm in going to see a few clinics so you can check out different opinions on what would suit you best. This way you’ll get an idea of where you feel most comfortable.

Who Can Use Invisalign And What Are The Benefits Of This Orthodontic Treatment?

Besides creating an appearance that is less aesthetic, teeth that are too crowded, very widely spaced or misplaced can also bring along several other serious oral health complications. This is something that nobody likes having to live with for all their lives.

The Invisalign technology is a fashionable and trending orthodontic system of treatment that employs comfortable and smooth clear plastic dental aligners to gently, slowly and gradually shift your misaligned teeth into better positions. These unique and innovative aligners are commonly known as “invisible braces” by most people because they are virtually invisible when worn.

Who Can Use This Method?

This method is an excellent option for those many that desire to get orthodontic correction but don’t need or wish to put on the conventional metal braces. Among what can be corrected using this innovative treatment approach includes:

• Teeth crowding
• Widely spaced teeth
• Twisted teeth
• Overlapping teeth
• Mild cases of malocclusions

Before you finally decide that you will go for this method of orthodontic correction, it’s important that you comprehensively discuss your goals as well as all your concerns with your orthodontist.

All specialist dental care providers must be accredited by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency. The Australian Dental Council (ADC) has been mandated by law as the body that registers dental professions under the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law. So verify their credentials and government certifications.

Great Aesthetics

People who are in regular speaking engagements before public audiences/gatherings, those who have to meet with clients face to face, or those with other such factors that demand a professional and mature appearance are some of the best candidates.

This is a very good choice for anybody who wishes to have their teeth straightened but is not happy about the inconveniences and aesthetics of traditional metal braces. If you so wish, it’s possible to remove the aligners for your special events or occasions.

Good for Teens

Being a teenager is tough and challenging. Teens are known to be extremely self-conscious regarding their looks and kind of image they publicly project. The Teen version helps them to get their teeth straightened without having to undergo hassles associated with braces. It is also an excellent alternative for students who take part in sports or musicians.

Here are a few aspects you must consider:

1. Having cosmetic dentistry may be a fine choice if your teeth are only mildly crooked or you got big spaces in between. However, if they overlap, are twisted or crowded, it’s necessary to consider having them straightened using orthodontics rather than attempt to conceal the problems through cosmetic dentistry.

2. Crowded or crooked teeth are certainly more challenging when it comes to keeping them clean. This exposes them to higher risk levels in relation to contracting gum disease and decay. Orthodontics makes a fine way of straightening your problematic teeth.

3. These virtually invisible dental aligners will gently and gradually shift your crooked or crowded teeth into positions which are more pleasing. All dental medical products must have the approval of the Australian Dental Industry Association (ADIA)

Remember that good dental hygiene and care for your aligners is critical to how fast your treatment lasts. Therefore follow the instructions from your dental professional for maximum results and for that winning smile.

The Use of Lasers in Dentistry

A dental laser is a special laser used to counter oral surgery or dentistry. C. Kumar N. Patel made the first ever CO2 laser in 1964 and in the same following year the Nd:YAG laser was invented at Bell labs. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the United States of America first approved the use of lasers in dentistry in 1994. Post-this development, the use of lasers on hard tissues like teeth or the bones of the Mandible i.e. jawbone was approved in 1996. Several variations of dental lasers are in use with different wavelengths, which means that they are better suited for different applications.

Dental lasers are used in the oral care field to treat multiple problems:

1. Teeth Whitening – a peroxide bleaching solution applied to tooth is ‘triggered’ by a laser energy, which fastens the whitening process.

2. Tooth Decay – to remove tooth decay and prepare the surrounding enamel for receipt of the filling.

3. Biopsy – lasers are used to remove a small piece of tissue called biopsy, which helps in inspecting cancer.

4. Gum Problems – laser technology helps in reshaping gums and removing bacteria

5. Remove Tissues – it helps remove overgrown tissues caused by certain medications.

6. Proper Movement – It helps in removing muscle attachments that restrict proper movement of the mouth.

How do Lasers work?

The goal of a dental laser surgery is to optimize photo biologic effects. The Photo thermal conversion of energy permits soft tissue incisions and excisions to be accomplished with accompanying precision. To understand this on a less scientific note, once a laser beam is produced it is aimed at the tissue to perform a precise task. In this task, four interactions occur once the energy reaches the interface, which are Absorption, Transmission, Scattering and Reflection.

“All lasers work by delivering energy in the form of light. When used for surgical procedures, the laser acts as a cutting instrument or vaporizer and when used for curing a filling, the laser helps in strengthening the bond between filling and tooth.” The dental lasers in common use today are Erbium, Nd:YAG, Diode and CO2. Each type of laser has special biological effects and procedures associated with them.

Advantages of using Laser Dentistry

• It is a more precise and advanced technology
• A more relaxing and pain less experience for the patient
• No more anesthesia injections or drill procedures are performed in the teeth
• Lasers can reduce symptoms and healing times associated with traditional therapies.
• Controls bleeding and swelling during surgery
• Helps to reduce the amount of bacteria in both gum tissues and tooth cavities
• It preserves a healthier tooth during cavity treatment.

Some Cons include

• Laser treatment is less pocket-friendly; its cost is much higher than a usual dental drill
• Lasers can’t be used on teeth with fillings already in place
• Laser is not a very reliable method as traditional drill may still be required during shape filling and bite adjustments due to irregular results
• The need to eliminate anesthesia is not completely over-ruled during laser treatment

To be sure of a Dentist’s proper laser training?

Asking your dentist questions about the extent of his/her laser education and training would be great place to start. Then make sure that your dentist has participated in educational practices and received training by the manufacturer. Popular dental schools, associations and the Academy of Laser Dentistry (ALD) offer dental laser education. The Academy of Laser Dentistry is the profession’s independent source for current dental laser education and credentialing.

The FDA 510(k) Clearance: a statement from American Dental Association

All dental lasers currently available in the U.S. market have a 510(k) clearance by the Food and Drug Administration. The team in-charge decides if the product meets the desired criteria for substantial equivalence. The review includes dental laser system specifications and safety mechanisms. Given the many factors that are appropriate to evaluate when using lasers, the council feels that the 510(k) process alone is not sufficient to demonstrate safety or efficacy. Properly designed preclinical and clinical studies are necessary to demonstrate safety and efficacy.

The council advises the dental practitioners to proceed with caution with the devices been cleared for market by the FDA 510(k) clearance. There are currently more than twenty cleared indications for use for dental lasers in the USA.

Conclusion

Laser use in dentistry is gaining popularity these days with advantages such as “pain less” experiences making laser dentistry friendly. “To gain something we have to sacrifice something else” – this statement is in contention with laser dentistry as it is a costly affair. Therefore, laser treatments carried out for oral care is more-or-less a luxury. Having said that, the treatment is only for those who could afford it, which is why the traditional methods of dentistry are in high demand.