The use and abuse of opioids have risen to epic levels. In 2016, there were more deaths resulting from opioid abuse than ever before. The American Dental Association has decided to take a firm stance to stop it’s spread by making education and prevention a top priority for a field that can use pain management medication for dental pain relatively frequently. The CDC has also taken an active stance against this epidemic. Dr. Thomas Gibbs of Smile Glen Ellyn is dedicated to preventing the misuse of opioids to treat dental pain and does everything in his power to keep his team educated so that we can provide the compassionate care you deserve.
The ADA and the CDC Push Education & Preventative Practices
The ADA has offered free online webinars for dentists for the past six years. These webinars promote the safest way to prescribe opioids for dental pain. This commitment to continuing education has also focused on identifying patients who may be at risk for substance abuse. As a result, there has also been a push toward prescribing non-narcotic drugs to treat dental pain. The training is comprehensive in that it explores ways of encouraging at-risk patients to get help, and urges dental professionals to adhere to the guidelines set for chronic pain.
The ADA, CDC, and a whole host of other organizations are committed to diminishing the prevalence of opioid abuse. Education is key, in addition to finding appropriate preventive measures. Your Glen Ellyn, IL, dentist hopes with their attentive practice to diminish the abuse of opioids among dental patients. Proactive measures like education and practical solutions will go far in the fight to stamp out this form of abuse, and we are here to help you maintain your overall health.
Taking care of the toothbrush that takes care of your teeth is easier than you think. In the simplest terms, a toothbrush needs to be free of debris and have intact bristles to keep your smile looking its best. According to the ADA, you should replace your existing toothbrush with a new one every three to four months. A toothbrush that looks worn or has broken bristles should always be replaced right away.
Need for Sterilization?
Although you should rinse used toothpaste and debris from your brush after each use, there is no need to sterilize it. In fact, since toothbrushes are sold in boxes that are not hermetically sealed and sit on dusty store shelves for months at a time, they are far from sterile. Moreover, recent research has revealed that much of the bacteria on toothbrushes is harmless to your dental or overall health.
People are whitening their teeth now more than ever before, making it crucial that dentists be able to choose safe whitening products for patients. Luckily, the ADA has released a standard regulating the safety of these products.
Standard No. 136 was developed over a period of years by many collaborators, and approved by the American National Standards Institute. It sets requirements on factors like toxicity, how safe products are for the enamel and soft tissue of the mouth, and active ingredient concentrations, among other things. These factors are all cited by Dr. Clifton Carey, of the ADA Standards Committee and the University of Colorado, as being important to consumer safety.
What this means for consumers is that the ADA and ANSI have created a set of guidelines that ensure the health of natural teeth and soft tissue, while still achieving the dazzling smile we are striving for.
For more information, visit our Glen Ellyn teeth whitening page.