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By contact@thegrandblancdentist.com
September 11, 2013
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CAMBRA? What does that grouping of letters mean to you? Is it the tension on the strings of a bow? Is it the sound a tenor drum makes when hit? Is it the newest of designer names you should name your next child?

Well, no. It is the acronym for: Caries Management By Risk Assessment. It is a process that was developed to help assess and lower a patient’s susceptibility for getting future cavities. It started in New Zealand about 10 years ago. Then the California Dental Society picked up on it and it has spread from there.

Cavities do not just happen. There is always a reason we get a cavity in a certain place at a certain time. In the old days you dentist would just say you have 3 cavities and we will need one hour to fix them. Now a CAMBRA dentist may say; You have 3 cavities and what has changed in your life? If we just spend a few minutes, we can usually figure out why you got the cavity.

What is surprising is that very few dentists are thinking in a CAMBRA way. The old school philosophy is to just “drill and fill”. In my nearly 3 years of teaching at the University of Michigan I have seen the students go from the old way to the new way. Each student now must make a caries risk assessment on every patient. If the patient is at risk for current or future cavities then they will get the patient the necessary goodies to lower their susceptibility to dental decay.

Here in lowly Grand Blanc, I have been using CAMBRA for over 6 years. I was first taught to perform a risk assessment on our patients by my mentor, John Kois back in 2007. He taught me to assess patient’s risks in all areas of oral health not just caries. So, if you get a cavity, expect me to start asking questions. Answer a few questions vs. drill and fill. Who would not be up for that!

Yours for oral health,

Dr. Scott Smith

By drscott@scottsmithsmiles.com
March 19, 2013
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Do you have occasional sensitivity to cold in your teeth?

Well, it could be a problem with a cavity, filling, cracked tooth, or just exposed dentin. How do you tell which it is? If you have had us look at your teeth in the last 6 months or so, you most likely can rule out the cavity or filling problem. A cracked tooth can hurt to cold, but it usually hurts primarily to chewing.

Dentinal hypersensitivity (sensitive root) is caused when the enamel or gum disappears and the underlying dentin is exposed. This exposed dentin is caused by tooth brushing, wear, or acid erosion. Sometimes the problem is aggressive enough to cause a notch in the tooth. Surprisingly the size of the notch is not related to the level of sensitivity. I have seen people with severe dentin sensitivity even when the dentin is barely visible.

The good news is that you can help reduce the sensitivity quite easily, without paying me to fix it. First, avoid acidic foods that will strip off the protective enamel or surface of the tooth. Examples of these are: pineapple juice, tomatoes, lemons, and lemonade. Sour candies are the worst! Examples are: Sour Patch Kids, Sweet Tarts, Jolly Ranchers, Spree, and Tangy Taffy. Secondly, use a desensitizing tooth paste. There are many brands out there and the all work. My favorites are Aquafresh sensitivity, Crest sensitivity, and Colgate Sensitivity. They all contain the active ingredient: potassium chloride. Avoid tarter control tooth pastes that contain sodium pyrophosphate. This chemical will make your teeth even more cold sensitive.

There you go! Watch the acidic foods and use a desensitizing toothpaste for a pain free ice cream cone.

 

Dr. Scott

By drscott
May 01, 2012
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Hi everyone,

With the warmer weather come the fun beverages we all love. They are refreshing and necessary to stay hydrated when it is hot. One thing that is important to remember that sipping on a sugary beverage can lead to nasty cavities.

I hate to be a wet blanket, but if you sip all day you will get decay. Most people never truly understand the cause until it is too late and they are sitting in my chair getting one or more holes fixed. So here it goes, my; “where cavities come from speech”.

Bacteria cause cavities because they make acid as a byproduct of their digestion of food. Guess what? They eat the same things as we do, because they live in our mouth. The only difference is they are really small, so eating a Tic Tac is a holiday feast for them. They produce acid for about 20 minutes. This dissolves away some calcium from your tooth for the next 20 minutes. If you put absolutely nothing in your mouth for the next 2 hours your saliva will replace the lost calcium. Problem solved!

What if you put some more sugary food in your mouth before 2 hours? Well, then you loose some more enamel. If you keep snacking or sipping then you never give your saliva a chance to replace the calcium in your tooth. It is a lot like a negative cash flow situation on a charge card. You never get the principal paid off. With your tooth the result is a hole we call a cavity.

Foods and beverages that contain citric acid eat away the enamel the fastest. Click on the link: ENAMEL DESTRUCTION CHART in the front page of my web site for a list of the offending beverages. There are safer alternatives you can choose. They are on the left of the graph.

Happy summer and enjoy water all day.

Dr. Scott

By drscott
January 05, 2012
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    It is a new year and I trust everyone is doing well. Our holiday break was short and hectic, but rewarding. Getting together with the family is what the holidays are all about.

 

    Happy New Year!

 

    I wanted to take a moment to let, many of you who do not know, that I am approaching my one year anniversary of teaching at the University of Michigan School of dentistry at Ann Arbor. I accepted a position last February as an adjunct clinical assistant professor. I drive down to the “U” every Friday.  I am currently teaching third and forth year dental students in the clinic. I assign and monitor their progress in doing general dentistry; just like I do every day. It is very rewarding to see their eyes light up when I show them one of my “tricks”. This is my way to give back to my profession I am so passionate about.

 

    Also, by spending time with other faculty in the school I am exposed to a wealth of information about ongoing research and materials science. It is these bits of wisdom I am able to bring back to my own practice and blend it with my 28 years of experience in order to provide the best patient care possible.

 

    Best Wishes in the New Year,

 

    Dr. Scott

By contactus
November 28, 2011
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A respected nutritionist told me; “It’s not important what you eat between Thanksgiving and Christmas, It’s important what you eat between Christmas and Thanksgiving!”

I have patients who, at the end of their recall visit, thank me for their healthy smiles. I return that we only were in their mouth for one hour every six months. The real hero is the patient! They are the ones who are responsible for their healthy mouth!

So have fun over the holidays and be sure to take care of you mouths.  Take a peek at my enamel destruction chart. It will show you which beverages are the worst and the best.

Merry Christmas and have a happy New Year.

Dr. Scott





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Scott T. Smith DDS
Dentist - Grand Blanc
2290 East Hill Road Suite 201
Grand Blanc, MI 48439
810-694-0120

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