Tuesday, December 11, 2007

The Debate About Fluoride Continues

Last week, Ruscombe Green posted a lenghty blog entry about fluoride.

The anti-fluoride brigade believes fluoride causes all sorts of things, namely flourois, or staining of the teeth. Other people think fluoride causes cancer, but no link has been discovered. (However, you can get throat cancer from something far less innocent than fluoride.)

As a dentist, I think fluoride is great -- in fact, I grew up in NY, a state that adds fluoride to its water. Yes, some kids do get stained teeth from too much fluoride; however, no fluoride means decayed teeth.

If fluoride isn't in the water, you have to give it to your child in pill form every night -- unless you're willing to have your child develop a mouthful of cavities. It's simply easier to add it to the water.

What do you think? Should fluoride be banned from public water systems?

Follow Up to Dental Tourism Post

Philip Boyle, of RevaHealth.com, recently emailed me about my dental tourism podcast.

In his email Philip writes:

I agree entirely that before anyone travels they need to exercise proper due diligence in respect of the dentist and clinic they choose. At RevaHealth.com, we're aiming to provide people with as much information as possible on the topic, as well as an easy way to contact any number of clinics. We're also getting patients who have travelled to provide reviews of their experience that are available for all to see.

We currently deal primarily in the European market, which has standardized ethics codes and freedom of movement for work for dentists within the member countries. People can be fairly sure that the baseline quality of care will be the same between the different member states.

Obviously some dentists and clinics are going to be better than others, and as such it is up to the person looking to travel to do their homework in that regard, but having this common baseline does remove a certain amount of the fear/uncertainty/doubt that an EU resident travelling to another EU country might have.

Be sure to check out RevaHealth.com, a resource site for anyone looking for a medical professional anywhere in the world. It's full of great information, including a dental tourism guide and a dental savings calculator.

And thanks for listening, Philip!

Friday, December 7, 2007

Fear and Anxiety When Visiting the Dentist

A person searching the Internet found my site and wrote in via email:

I have read your comments about new dental technologies and how they can reduce fear and anxiety when at the dentist. I was just enquiring about what are your views about the interior environment (interior space) and its impact on the patients fear and anxiety. Do you feel that this plays a role in dentistry?

As an LVI-trained dentist, I firmly believe that the interior of my office and its decor help reduce patients' fear and anxiety.

We have been trained since childhood to associate certain smells, sounds, and even colors with medical offices. When you walk into a dental office, you often smell antisceptic. Some dentists will make an effort to "warm up" their lobbies with furnishings and curtains, but the lobby is still often dark or lacks natural light.

The treatment rooms themselves can be pretty dreary as dentists getting on in years don't want to make the investment in new colors, treatment chairs and even new dental technologies.

All of this is one reason I've made a real effort to design my office to not look or smell like a dental office. When you step into the lobby, the first thing you notice is the abundance of natural light, waterfall, and seasonal decorations.

The entire office, including the treatment room, is immaculate, warm, and inviting. When you visit my dental spa, I want you feel comfortable and relaxed -- as if you're stepping into your own home.

In fact, you can take a tour of my office without leaving your home -- just click on the following link which will open a virtual or 360 degree tour of my office.