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Chris Raines

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National Prosthodontics Awareness Week

Posted by Chris Raines on Apr 18, 2018 4:30:42 PM

The Pi Dental Center team celebrates National Prosthodontics Awareness Week

Pi Dental Center celebrated National Prosthodontics Awareness Week (NPAW) with an Open House on April 12th. This fun and informative event was designed to thank our patients and to educate the general public about the dental specialty of Prosthodontics.

What's a prosthodontist?

A Prosthodontist is an ADA recognized dental specialist who has advanced training and skill with the diagnosis, restoration and maintenance of oral function, patient comfort, appearance and health of the patient through restoration of natural teeth and expert replacement of missing teeth. Prosthodontists complete a rigorous advanced postdoctoral educational program in Prosthodontics accredited by the American Dental Association.

During the Open House, Dr. Glenn Wolfinger, a board certified prosthodontist, and the Pi Dental Center clinical team provided complimentary diagnostic evaluations with radiographic x-rays.

Our Open House also featured technology tours and Dental Question and Answer displays. The Q & A display answered questions about prosthodontics, highlighted the types of treatment provided by prosthodontists, outlined the advantages of dental implant treatment, stated Pi Dental Center’s dental implant success rate, provided the features of AvaDent® digital dentures, and explained the benefits of the TRIOS® digital impression system.

Gift Bags for National Prosthodontics Awareness WeekAttractive gift bags were given to visitors and patients. Each gift bag included a sample of Pi Dental Center's Own Custom Coffee Blend, gift cards for dental treatment at Pi Dental Center, gift cards and coupons from local business sponsors including Weavers Way Food Coop (Ambler, Mount Airy, Chestnut Hill), Holiday Inn Express (Fort Washington, PA), Xtra One-O-One (Ambler, PA), We Fix-Phones-N-More (Horsham, PA), and a handy map/event schedule from Ambler Main Street.

The American College of Prosthodontists (ACP) is a national organization representing prosthodontists that promotes the highest standard of patient care, provides advanced education opportunities and professional services to its members. The ACP encourages its members to participate in National Prosthodontics Awareness Week each year.

As part of National Prosthodontics Awareness Week, prosthodontists in dental schools and private practices provided a host of other activities and reached people all over the United States. Prosthodontics Awareness Proclamations were made by city and state government organizations throughout the country serving almost 9 million people.

If you would like to learn how a prosthodontist can help you, restore damaged teeth or replace missing teeth, please contact us by telephone, email or by clicking this button.

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Tags: dental implants, replace missing teeth, restore damaged teeth, digital impressions

Prosthodontics and Dental Implant Education for All

Posted by Chris Raines on Mar 27, 2018 2:30:00 PM

The American Academy of Fixed Prosthodontics presented Dr Wolfinger with a Certificate of Appreciation for significant contributions to dental profession and the public and for sharing knowledge and wisdom with Academy.Dr. Glenn Wolfinger and the team at Pi Dental Center are committed to educating both dental professionals and the general public about the ADA recognized specialty of prosthodontics, digital dentistry, and the newest technologies in dental implant treatment.

This winter, Dr. Wolfinger energetically educated prosthodontists and dental surgeons in advanced dental implant treatment. In February, Wolfinger presented, “The Evolution of the Teeth In A Day® Protocol” at the American Academy of Fixed Prosthodontics Annual Scientific Session in Chicago. The presentation chronicled the history and evolution Teeth In A Day® and highlighted how advancements in technology have helped to improve the accuracy and predictability of the protocol. In March, Wolfinger gave the “Evolution of Teeth In A Day” presentation to The Chesapeake Implant Study Club in Annapolis, Maryland.

Photo taken at the AAFP February 2018: Drs Sangeetha Raghavendra and Avi Bidra, Prosthodontists from Connecticut pictured with Dr. WolfingerTeeth In A Day® allows Pi Dental Center’s busy patients to have successful dental implant treatment with little interruption in their schedule.

To say that Dr. Wolfinger has extensive training and experience in dentistry is an understatement. Wolfinger is a Diplomate of the American Board of Prosthodontics, a Fellow and Diplomate in the International Congress of Oral lmplantologists, a Fellow in the Academy of Osseointegration, and a Fellow in the American College of Prosthodontists. He has served on several committees within the Academy of Osseointegration and as a member of the Board of Directors of the American College of Prosthodontists. Dr. Wolfinger graduated from Tufts University School of Dental Medicine, completed a general practice residency program at Albert Einstein Medical Center in Philadelphia, and then completed a residency in combined Prosthodontics through the VA and Harvard University School of Dental Medicine in Boston. Wolfinger is a Past-President of the Pennsylvania Prosthodontic Association and has participated in numerous research projects, lectured internationally, and has had many articles published in refereed journals.

Next month, Dr. Wolfinger and the Pi Dental Center will be celebrating National Prosthodontics Awareness Week. On Thursday, April 12th, we will be holding an Open House to help raise awareness of prosthodontics and inform the public about the advanced skills and expertise that prosthodontists offer. Visitors will learn what a prosthodontist does and how prosthodontic skill exceeds that of general dentistry. New technologies will be on display with a focus on dental implant education and digital dentistry. The event will include tours, demonstrations and hands-on activities. Come to Pi Dental Center on April 12th for a complimentary exam.

Feel free to contact Pi Dental Center to sign up for the Open House or to schedule an appointment.

Pi DENTAL CENTER OPEN HOUSE RSVP

Tags: dental implant treatment, National Prosthodontics Awareness Week, digital dentistry, prosthodontists

Main Line Today’s Top Dental Practitioner 2018

Posted by Chris Raines on Feb 22, 2018 12:30:49 PM

Dr Glenn Wolfinger, Main Line Today Top Practitioner 2018When you need a dentist for complex dental treatment, you want the best! Replacing missing teeth with dental implants requires advanced training, innovation, great skill and years of experience.

This month, Dr. Glenn Wolfinger of Pi Dental Center, was chosen by his peers as a 2018 Top Dentist in Main Line Today’s Annual Medical Guide in the field of Prosthodontics. Each year, the magazine lists the area’s most talented practitioners in medicine and dentistry.

Dr. Glenn Wolfinger is a board certified prosthodontist who has been recreating smiles at Pi Dental Center for over 24 years. He is internationally recognized for all aspects of dental implant treatment from surgical placement to prosthetic delivery. Dr. Wolfinger has organized numerous critical research projects, lectures internationally, teaches and has had many articles published in refereed journals.

Prosthodontics is a dental specialty recognized by the American Dental Association. A prosthodontist has advanced training in diagnosis, planning, rehabilitation of the mouth, and maintenance of oral function. Prosthodontists seek to ensure patient comfort, ideal esthetic appearance, and maximum dental health. Prosthodontists are expert in creating all types of prostheses from crowns, bridges, and removable dentures to implant supported restorations.

What makes Dr. Wolfinger and Pi Dental Center a Top Dental Practitioner?

“Pi Dental Center has been placing dental implants longer than other dentists in Eastern Pennsylvania and has earned an outstanding reputation in the dental community. When a patient’s dental situation is extremely involved, dentists send their patients to Dr. Wolfinger. And many dentists come to Pi Dental Center for their own care,” states Pat Martin, Director of Patient Relations.

What can patients expect at Pi Dental Center?

“You can expect to be treated by a very experienced team that’s familiar with all aspects of prosthodontic care. Our team is compassionate and professional,” Martin continues.

What is Pi Dental Center’s Goal for Patients?

Andrea Clendaniel, Expanded Function Dental Assistant, affirms, “Our goal is to make patients feel like they are the only patient in the office. When they come to Pi Dental Center for an appointment, they have all of our attention and all of our focus. We cater to our patients. Every patient is important.”

What do patient’s love about Pi Dental Center?

“Our patients feel like family. They know that we listen closely to them and that their concerns will be addressed.” Andrea points out, “Each patient is unique and the smiles we design are totally customized. Each restoration is tailored to the patient’s individual needs, goals and desires.”

If you are looking for a committed team to transform your smile, call Pi Dental Center at 215-646-6334.

Ask A Dental Question Or Schedule An Appointment

Tags: dental implants, prosthodontist, top dental practitioner, transform your smile

What Do the Eagles Super Bowl Win and Dental Care Have In Common?

Posted by Chris Raines on Feb 9, 2018 2:00:00 PM

Dr. Wolfinger and Dr. Milavec Super Bowl Challenge Photo

The Philadelphia Eagles defied the odds to win Super Bowl 52 in Minneapolis, beating the favorite and defending Super Bowl Champion, the New England Patriots, in a game that came down to the last play.

The Eagles chances of winning were slim. In Feb. 6, 2017, Las Vegas sportsbook Oddsshark pegged the Eagles' chances of winning a title this season at 42 to 1. They were 18th out of 32 NFL teams. The Eagles became underdogs last month when star quarterback Carson Wentz tore his ACL. The Patriots, Cowboys, Packers, and Seahawks had the best chance of winning the Super Bowl, according to Oddsshark.

"If you told me before September, 'No you're not going to have Jason Peters, you're not going to have Darren Sproles, you're not going to have Jordan Hicks, you're eventually not going to have Carson Wentz, you're going to lose your best special teams player in  S Chris] Maragos - oh, by the way, your field goal kicker, you're not going to have him either - it's a lot of body blows at that point," Jeffrey Lurie said. "If you had said that, I would have told you, 'No I don't think we'll make the playoffs.' Right? So the resiliency amongst this group is phenomenal."

The Eagles came up with critical plays when they were most needed. They took risks and played consistently. Each individual player had an integral role throughout the season.

A football player faces countless challenges. To be the best, he must continually improve skills and execute each play with perfection; he must maintain excellent physical health, keep nerves in check and be continuously alert. He must continue to learn and know his competition.

Attitude is essential. A great football player does not doubt that he can achieve his goals. He does not give up. He thinks positively and is tough. In practice and in every game, he gives 100 percent.

Maintaining top physical health includes precise diet and rigorous exercise, regular doctor’s visits, addressing health concerns immediately.

People can learn quite a bit from football players. Many of a football players challenges can be applied to people’s lives. Continuing to learn and grow, having a positive attitude, giving 100 percent and maintaining physical health will help people to reach their goals.

Prior to the final Super Bowl game on Sunday night, Dr. Glenn Wolfinger of Pi Dental Center and Dr. Joseph Milavec of Boston made a friendly wager. If the Philadelphia Eagles won the Super Bowl, Dr. Milavec's office would send New England clam chowder. If the New England Patriot's won, Pi Dental Center would be sending Dr. Milavec's office Philly Soft Pretzels.

Dr. Wolfinger and Dr. Milavec are good friends. And like Pi Dental Center, Dr. Milavec’s office offers high-quality dental care. Both Dr. Wolfinger and Dr. Milavec are prosthodontists, dental specialists skilled in the restoration and replacement of teeth.

Dental health is just as important as medical health and contributes to overall vitality.

Dental pain can dominate your life. When a tooth hurts or when it’s hard to chew, it is hard to concentrate on anything else. Dental emergencies disrupt your schedule and can affect everyone on “your team.”

But when your mouth feels comfortable, you are able to focus on goals. Healthy teeth and gums eliminate the possibility of being “out of action.” A healthy mouth allows you to perform at your highest possible level without distractions.

When a tooth is missing, your tongue will find that space hundreds of times each day. It’s more difficult to eat and speak. People who have missing teeth often feel self-conscious. A healthy attractive smile increases your overall confidence.

A dental implant is the best option for replacing a missing tooth. Implants are scientifically proven to be effective with over 96% success rate. Dental implants replicate biologic tooth roots. They are made of titanium, a substance that is compatible with bone. Within a few months of implant placement, titanium osseointegrates (bonds) with bone. A tooth supported by a dental implant looks and feels like a natural tooth. Because an implant supported is non-removable, you can be confident with daily activities like eating, talking and smiling.

Pi Dental Center is one of the leading centers for dental implant treatment in the United States.

Our center provides customized treatment options for each patient in a comfortable and relaxed setting. For patient comfort, dental implant placement can be performed under general anesthesia. Every member of the team is sensitive to our patients’ needs and excels in making every patient feel at ease. If you would like a winning smile contact Pi Dental Center at 215-646-6334 or contact us by clicking the button below.

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Sources:

http://www.pennlive.com/philadelphiaeagles/index.ssf/2018/01/super_bowl_surprise_philadelph.html

http://www.espn.com/nfl/story/_/page/Barnwellx180205/2017-nfl-playoffs-how-philadelphia-eagles-beat-new-england-patriots-super-bowl-lii

Joseph J. Milavec, DMD, 400 Commonwealth Avenue # 1, Boston, MA 02215 • (617) 266-8404

Glenn J. Wolfinger, DMD, FACP, Pi Dental Center • 467 Pennsylvania Ave, Suite 201 Fort Washington, PA 19034 • 215-646-6334

Tags: dental implants, dental health, Dr. Glenn Wolfinger, dental care, general anesthesia

Acid Erosion and Your Teeth

Posted by Chris Raines on Feb 8, 2018 11:56:27 AM

Comparison of acidic foods and beverages

Acidic beverages and sugary foods can wear away tooth enamel. Unfortunately, damaged tooth enamel is permanent and increases the risk for tooth decay.

Tooth enamel is the thin outer covering of the teeth. It is the hardest substance in your body. But acidic foods and beverages can wreak havoc on tooth enamel. 

Soft drinks, fruit drinks, alcoholic beverages and sports drinks are highly acidic and frequent consumption of these acidic beverages can harm your tooth enamel. Sugary foods and some medications, such as aspirin, can also damage tooth enamel. Acid reflux is another culprit.

Recent studies show that teens are especially at risk for tooth erosion. One study confirmed that over 45% of teens aged 13 to 19 have tooth erosion. Another indicated that 56% of teenagers aged 18 to 19 had tooth erosion.

Photo illustrates how teeth can be eroded by soft drinks.Tooth enamel cannot be regrown or regenerated, so it’s important to protect the teeth. Prevent tooth erosion by limiting intake of acidic and sugary beverages and foods. Sipping water while you eat sugary treats can help to wash particles from teeth. If acid reflux is a frequent occurrence, see your doctor. Many effective treatments are available. Follow a regular oral care routine by brushing twice a day and flossing daily.

Fluoride has been shown to be beneficial in strengthening and protecting teeth. Over 50 scientific studies have documented the benefits of fluoride in protecting tooth enamel.

Some toothpastes contain minerals that help to replenish calcium in weak spots. These toothpastes reinforce areas where erosion has occurred and can lessen further damage.

Talk to your dentist about which toothpaste is best for you.

Get regular dental checkups with and oral hygiene cleaning to identify problems early and address them promptly.

Tooth enamel erosion can be readily identified.  Symptoms of enamel loss include increased sensitivity to hot, cold, and sweet foods, yellowness of the teeth, and roughness on the edges of the teeth. (Photo illustrates acid erosion of teeth caused by frequent consumption of soft drinks. View before and after photos of patient).

Acid erosion can become so extensive in some cases that root canal therapy or even tooth extraction may be indicated.

Dr. Glenn Wolfinger stated, “Lost tooth enamel can be replaced with porcelain restorations (veneers or dental crowns). Crowns tend to be the stronger and more effective way to replace missing enamel.”

Prosthodontists are the specialists in the restoration and replacement of teeth. Dr. Wolfinger is a board certified prosthodontist in the Philadelphia area, and can provide expert diagnosis and treatment for tooth erosion.

Call us at 215-646-6334 to discuss acid erosion and your teeth and to learn about rebuilding a smile. If you’ve noticed changes in the appearance or sensitivity of your teeth like breakage, discolorations, shifting or tooth pain, feel free to give us a call to discuss treatment options. At Pi Dental Center, we create sparkling smiles.

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Tags: dental treatment, dental fillings, dental pain, create sparkling smiles, board certified prosthodontist, dental health, rebuilding a smile, Dr. Glenn Wolfinger

Digital Dentistry Helpful for Patients with Strong Gag Reflex

Posted by Chris Raines on Nov 28, 2017 2:25:16 PM

Relief for patients with a strong gag reflex

“I need to find a dentist who can handle my gagging problem.”

Gagging during dental treatment is a serious and very real problem. The ADA reports that 7.5% of patients almost-always gag when they visit a dentist. Some people avoid dental treatment because of gagging fears.

The gag reflex is based on an innate biological mechanism. The Life Science website defines the gag reflex, which is also known as the pharyngeal reflex or laryngeal spasm, as a contraction of the back of the throat. It is triggered by an object touching the roof of the mouth, the back of the tongue, the area around your tonsils, or the back of your throat. Ten to fifteen percent of people have a hypersensitive gag reflex.

Dr. Joseph Massad discussed the gag reflex in Dental Economics. The gag reflex is generally thought to be controlled by the hypothalamus of the brain.

Pi Dental Center provides digital dentistry with our TRIOS® digital scanner. The TRIOS® scanner is used for crowns, bridges and single tooth implant restorations. One of the most important benefits of the TRIOS® intraoral scanner is improving the patient’s dental experience. A traditional dental impression can sometimes be unpleasant for patients who gag. Digital impressions are often more comfortable for the patient. Digital impressions are faster and the scans are more accurate, efficient, faster and more precise. “Patients continuously rave about the ease and comfort of our new digital impressions, says Dr. Glenn Wolfinger”. 

Both the doctor and patient can see the results on a large screen immediately.

Pat Martin, EFDA and Director of Patient Relations states, “This technology allows the doctor to capture a digital image eliminating the need to take multiple impressions to have lab work fabricated. Patients like this convenient method of impression-taking because it is cleaner and less likely to produce a gag reflex.  It elevates the doctor’s level of expertise in the eyes of their patient because the tooth image can be viewed on the screen immediately.”

Don’t allow a gag reflex to control your dental health! Please let us know if you have an active gag reflex and any fears that you have. Ask us about options to find relief for strong gag reflex. This will help us to improve your experience.

Consider having your next crown at Pi Dental Center with TRIOS®. Call us to discuss your treatment needs and let us know about your past office experiences and any concerns you have. Providing optimal dental care in a relaxed environment is the goal of everyone at Pi Dental Center. Our supportive team is skilled at providing a pleasant office visit and able to tailor treatment for each patient.

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Tags: digital dentistry, TRIOS digital impression, gag reflex

You’re Never Fully Dressed Without a Smile

Posted by Chris Raines on Nov 3, 2017 3:56:33 PM

Pi Dental Center Open House

We’ve all heard the song, “You’re never fully dressed without a smile.” In the Broadway musical, songwriters, Charles Strouse and Martin Charnin talk about how one’s smile and values outweigh the importance of elaborate attire or designer shoes.

The holidays are right around the corner. Festivities and gala events are on the schedule. Whether it’s for a Thanksgiving celebration, office Christmas party or New Year’s Bash, finding the perfect outfit is on many a to-do list. While accessories, like jewelry and scarves, can be an essential part of an outfit, it’s your smile that pulls everything together. A confident healthy smile is an essential part of a “wardrobe.”

Broken, stained and missing teeth not only detract from your appearance, they also reduce confidence and contribute to an array of health problems.

Jennifer Soong wrote in WEBMD, “Gum disease is linked to a host of illnesses including heart disease, diabetes, respiratory disease, osteoporosis, and rheumatoid arthritis. By combing through 1,000-plus medical histories, researchers at the University of North Carolina School of Dentistry found that people with gum disease were twice as likely as others to die from a heart attack and three times as likely to have a stroke. The mouth can act as a portal of entry for an infection, says Salomon Amar, DMD, PhD, professor and director at the Center for Anti-inflammatory Therapeutics at Boston University School of Dental Medicine. Ongoing inflammation in your mouth can allow bacteria to enter the bloodstream, which may lead to more inflammation in other parts of your body, such as the heart.”

At Pi Dental Center, our goal is to help our patients gain a gorgeous smile with healthy, gleaming white teeth that feel comfortable and function well.

Brilliant White Teeth

The Zoom Tooth Whitening system is a fast and convenient in-office service available at Pi Dental Center. Zoom is safe, effective and long lasting. Teeth can be lightened effectively as much as eight shades in just one office visit.

Digital Dentistry

AvaDent® Digital Dentures are superior to traditional solutions. AvaDent® teeth are robotically milled, for predictable precision and strength.

Digital Crown Technology

Digital crowns are faster and more accurate than traditional crowns. Impressions are more comfortable and this technology provides a better experience for our patients. Crown colors are realistic and the final product is superior.

Replacing Missing Teeth

Dental implants are the best option for replacement of missing teeth. Implants have a 96% success rate that has been proven through a vast body of research. They provide support and security without adding force to remaining teeth. Implants can replace a single missing tooth, a few teeth or all of the teeth in the entire mouth. They feel like your own teeth and look natural and attractive.

Learn What Sets Pi Dental Center Apart

This is your chance to learn about Pi Dental Center. An Open House is scheduled for Thursday, November 16th, 2017 from 10:00am to 3:00pm. The event is open to the public. Join us for a tour of our elite facility, a complimentary dental exam and some refreshments. We will be handing out an array of gifts and prizes. Meet board certified prosthodontist, Dr. Glenn Wolfinger, and the “Pi Team” and ask questions. The first step to a beautiful healthy smile is investigation. Pi Dental Center’s Open House is your opportunity to learn what treatment is needed and explore available dental procedures in a relaxed setting.

Take necessary steps for a dazzling smile

Call us at 215-646-6334 or click on this Link to reserve your spot at the Open House. If you need more information, please feel free to contact us!

Ask A Dental Question

Tags: dental implants, missing teeth, replacement of missing teeth, You're never fully dressed without a smile, look younger

Dental Care and Living Life on Purpose

Posted by Chris Raines on Oct 3, 2017 4:08:52 PM

Picture of a clock. How much time do you invest in tasks that do not fit into any of your priorities?

Would you describe yourself as a “fly by the seat of your pants” kind of person, or do you live your life very deliberately? Or are you somewhere in-between? People tend to fall somewhere along a spectrum between unplanned improvisation and a goal driven existence and tend to have strong opinions about these approaches to living.

In today’s busy world, it is easy to lose track of time on diversions. In an effort to keep abreast of current events, we can spend many hours on the Internet.  Diversions can include watching television, playing video games, and shopping just to name a few.

A friend described their life as, “Stuff is just going on. It is not planned. I roll with the punches.” Another friend writes goals and objectives for life, makes plans, and follows a strict schedule. The first extreme can lead to surprises and adventure, but a chaotic existence, and the second can be organized and safe but seem boring and regimented.

Perhaps the best way to determine if your lifestyle matches your unique perspective is to clarify your values.  Clarification of values is a way to learn what is most important to you so that you can determine whether you are living life in a way that is congruent with your beliefs. The first step is to list your top priorities in their order of importance.

Find Balance

Below is a list of several priorities. Write a number next to twelve that are most important to you. If something is missing, add it to the list and assign a number to it.

List Your Top 12 Priorities

____ Adventure

____ Community

____ Faith, Religion, Church

____ Family

____ Friendship

____ Fun

____ Your health

____ Helping Others

____ Home

____ Intellect and Knowledge

____ Job and Income

____ Love

____ Nation

____ Personal care/appearance

____ Popularity

____ Power

____ Relaxation

____ Security

____ Success

____ Wealth

Think about how you spend your day. How much time do you invest in tasks that do not fit into any of your priorities? Do you have control over your time and activities? If not, how can you align your daily activities to include your priorities? If necessities are not fitting into your schedule, how can you add them? Introspection can help you to live "life on purpose."

Did you list your health as one of your top priorities?  If not, look at the priorities that you chose and consider how your health would impact your chosen priorities. For example, it would be very difficult to seek adventure if you were not healthy. Taking care of your family would be quite challenging. For every item on the list, good health is a prerogative.

List Your Personal Health Priorities from One to Four

____ Medical

____ Dental

____ Nutrition

____ Psychological

____ Exercise

Medical and dental health

Did you list one personal health priority as more important than another? Where did “Dental” fall on your list? While some of these priorities are more time consuming, all are equally important.

Take control of dental health

There seems to be a disconnect between the teeth and the rest of a person’s life. Dental health impacts overall health.  Strong healthy teeth help to safeguard overall health. Problems in the mouth can affect the rest of the body.

Mayo Clinic Reports, “Many studies have shown a connection between gum disease (periodontitis) and other serious conditions, including heart disease. Research suggests that periodontitis is associated with an increased risk of developing heart disease and that people with chronic gum disease have increased thickness of their neck blood vessels. There is also a strong correlation between diabetes and cardiovascular disease, and evidence that people with diabetes benefit from professional teeth cleanings.”

Pat Martin, Office Manager at Pi Dental Center suggests, “Establish good dental habits early in life. If not, your teeth will suffer for it. This consists of home care as well as regular dental check-ups.”

What are your dental priorities?

Prioritizing can lead to a more satisfying life and help you to achieve a delicate balance in your life. Contact Pi Dental Center if you would like to discuss your dental care, schedule a diagnostic evaluation or oral hygiene cleaning.

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Chris Raines
Web Site Administrator
Information Systems Manager
Marketing and Information Technologies Departments

Tags: Medical and Dental Health, dental care, productivity

Dentists in the Media and Hollywood

Posted by Chris Raines on Jul 27, 2017 12:54:07 PM

Graphic for blog: Dentists in the Media shows Painless Parker ad, The Dentist's Office with Abbott and Costello and the plant from Little Shop of Horrors

The entertainment industry rarely delivers a kindly portrayal of dentists and dentistry. Whether in movies, in TV series or in print, their representations are centered on the assumption that people don't like going to the dentist. 

Dentists in movies are often characterized as evil, vengeful, malicious, naive, morally bankrupt, or just plain boring. Portrayals of dentists in a realistic or a positive light are a much smaller body of work by far. 

Dr. Thomas Giacobbi, editorial director of Dentaltown Magazine, states that dentistry is rarely depicted in a positive light. 

Lisa Newburger, writing in Dental Products Report says, "Dentists and hygienists get a bad rap! It’s just a fact that certain procedures cause pain. While nobody [goes] into this profession to cause pain (although, have you seen The Little Shop of Horrors?), it’s sometimes an inevitable part of dental work. Pain changes people. It makes the sweet, old lady a little nasty. This can get projected onto the dental professional." 

This negative representation of dentistry compromises good dental health by contributing to people's fear of dentists, making the general public less willing to seek much needed dental care. 

SADISTIC DENTISTS

Orin Schrivello is arguably one of the most well-known deranged dentists on screen or on stage. In the 1986 musical, Little Shop of Horrors, Steve Martin plays the sadistic dentist who likes to inflict pain on his patients and his girlfriend. Until he becomes dinner for the man-eating Audrey II plant from outer space. 

In the 1976 suspense-thriller film, Marathon Man, adapted by William Goldman from his 1974 novel, Dustin Hoffman is tortured by Nazi war-criminal dentist, Dr. Christian Szell (Sir Laurence Olivier). Szell is in the United States to sell a large cache of diamonds stolen from Jews killed at Auschwitz. 

Corbin Bernsen stars as Dr. Alan Feinstone in the 1996 horror film, The Dentist. When Feinstone discovers his wife's infidelity, his life spirals out of control and he goes on a murderous rampage driven by jealousy and an obsessive-compulsive disorder. One reviewer of this film said, "Fear and pain are the main reasons people don't like going to the dentist, so that's why this is the perfect setting for a horror movie."

In Horrible Bosses, Julia Harris DDS (Jennifer Aniston), is a manipulative, aggressive boss who regularly sexually harasses her subordinate, Dale, whom she blackmails with compromising photos that she took while he was unconscious. 

BUMBLING, INCOMPETENT DENTISTS

The Dentist’s Office aired on the Abbott and Costello Show on December 12, 1952. When Lou Costello's toothache becomes unbearable, Bud Abbott takes him to see a near-sighted dentist. When the dentist, asks Costello, “You don’t mind if there’s a patient before you?” he replies, “I wouldn’t mind if there were 340 patients before me.” 

On the Bob Newhart Show, Dr. Bob Hartley (Bob Newhart), a psychologist, shares his office and his secretary with Dr. Jerry Robinson (Peter Bonerz), a bumbling, eccentric, 70s swinging-single, orthodontist. When Jerry comes into money, he gives up his practice to do nothing but whittle and watch the sun come up. Bonerz appeared as Dr. Robinson on the Bob Newhart Show in 139 episodes from 1972-1978. 

In The Whole Nine Yards, Matthew Perry plays Nicholas "Oz" Oseransky, an incompetent dentist who is on the run from the mob, has a wife and mother-in-law who hate him, is laden with debt after his father-in-law (now deceased) embezzled from the practice, and almost kills a patient with nitrous oxide.

Bob Hope stars in, The Paleface, a 1948 comedy loosely based on real life dentist, "Painless" Edgar Rudolph Randolph Parker, portrayed in the film as a inept, cowardly dentist in the Wild West. 

MORALLY BANKRUPT DENTISTS

Cactus Flower, set in the 1960’s, features Walter Matthau as Julian Winston DDS, a bachelor dentist who deceives his hippy, ditsy girlfriend that he has a wife and three kids to ensure that she will not expect a proposal. 

Novacaine stars Steve Martin, humdrum dentist Dr. Frank Sangster, whose quiet life is derailed when he’s seduced by Susan Ivey (Helena Bonham Carter), and ends up stealing all the narcotics in his office. One small lie and everything unravels into crazy mixed up situations in this 2001 black comedy. 

NAIVE DENTISTS

In Robert Altman's 1970 film, M*A*S*H, the camp dentist, Captain Walter Koskiusko "Painless Pole" Waldowski (John Schuck), begins questioning his sexuality after suffering a "lack of performance" with a visiting nurse. Believing he is impotent due to latent homosexual tendencies, Painless tells Hawkeye he wants to commit suicide rather than disappoint the three girls he is engaged to back home. 

In the 2003 Disney animated film, Finding Nemo, hapless Australian dentist, Dr. Phillip Sherman, captures Nemo and places him into an office aquarium. Clueless as to the needs and value of fish, Sherman allows his rambunctious, destructive niece, Darla, to abuse Nemo and the other fish. 

BORING DENTISTS

Alan Arkin played Shelly Kornpett, in The In-Laws. Arkin portrays a humdrum, mild-mannered New York City dentist preparing for his daughter's wedding. The groom's father, Vince, is a hyper fellow who pulls Sheldon into one misadventure after another. 

DENTISTRY IN A POSITIVE LIGHT

Hermey the Misfit Elf, one of Santa Claus' helpers in the 1964 television special, Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, doesn't enjoy making toys like other elves. Instead, he proclaims, “Someday, I want to be a dentist! It’s fascinating ¾ molars, incisors and bicuspids,” making him a target of elfin ridicule, much like Rudolph with his glowing red nose. He returns in the 2001 computer-animated sequel, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and the Island of Misfit Toys, as Hermey the Elf, DDS, with a "Toothmobile" and a crush on the Tooth Fairy. 

Snow Dogs, a 2002 Walt Disney Pictures comedy with lots of corny humor, features a Miami dentist, Dr. Ted Brooks (Cuba Gooding, Jr.), whose life is changed when he inherits a team of sled dogs in Alaska.

Dentists in the Media:
Some other films that feature main characters who are dentists: The Man Who Knew Too Much, Inherent Vice, Charlie And The Chocolate Factory, Ghost Town, Thumbsucker, Eversmile, Secret Lives of Dentists
 

The role of mass media was examined in an article written in 2016 in Odontoestomatología, Patients’ Perceptions About Dentists: A Literature Review. "Nowadays, mass media influences the way people think and behave to a great extent. Mass media have had a key role in the development of dental fear and anxiety, both in children and adults. Dentists have been portrayed in cinema, television and commercial advertising media, sometimes negatively, which has affected people’s fears and has distorted people’s general perception of what dentists are really like. It is well known that dental treatment can be uncomfortable: this image is extensively exploited by the mass media and has resulted in the creation of an imaginary and popular idea of what a dentist is, associated with fear and pain, which in turn has stigmatized dentistry."* 

Mass media help to make the general public fearful of dental treatment and consequently contributes to people's unwillingness to seek needed dental treatment. Therefore it follows that mass media bears some responsibility for the public's poor dental health. 

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* Patients’ perceptions about dentists A literature review Henríquez-Tejo, Rocío Belén*, Cartes-Velásquez, Ricardo Andrés  Odontoestomatología / Vol. XVIII No 27 / May 2016

Chris Raines
Web Site Administrator
Information Systems Manager
Marketing and Information Technologies Departments

Tags: dentists in the movies, dentistry in film, dentists in movies, dentists in the media

Sports Guards Prevent Dental Injury

Posted by Chris Raines on Jun 22, 2017 4:45:04 PM

"Hey Mom, Do you remember those thirty-two teeth that I used to have?"

“Hey Mom! Do you remember those 32 teeth that I used to have?”, Bobby asked when he called his mother from the basketball court. This is the phone call that no parent wants to receive. While some sports injuries are unavoidable, damage to the teeth can be significantly reduced by wearing a sports guard.

What is a sports guard?

Sports guards protect your teeth from injury and should be worn during all sports and athletic activities. They are made of strong, durable plastic material that absorb shock and are available in a variety of colors and designs.

7% of all sports injuries are in the area of the faceIs sports guard essential sports equipment?

Yes, sports guards should be worn by anyone who plays contact sports like wrestling, squash, racquetball, hockey, boxing, football, soccer, lacrosse and baseball. People who participate in non-contact activities in which a mouth injury could occur should also wear a sports guard.  Dental injuries can occur during gymnastics, skateboarding and even biking. Professional and amateur athletes, adults and children should wear sports guards when practicing or competing.

What is the difference between a mouth guard and a sports guard?

Sports guards and mouth guards each have a different purpose. Mouth guards are usually worn at night to prevent tooth damage from grinding and bruxing or to maintain tooth position following orthodontics.  Mouth guards are usually hard plastic to protect against clenching and grinding. Sports guards are made of a thicker, more durable material to prevent injury and are usually flexible soft rubber or vinyl to protect against impact trauma.

Sports guards are available in many colors and designs are available.What sports guard to choose for safety and performance?

Inexpensive sports guards can be purchased in sporting goods stores but have several drawbacks. These one-size-fits-all devices do not provide the same level of protection as custom-made devices. The safest, highest quality sports guards are custom made by a dentist. These guards are individually designed in the dental office and fabricated in a dental lab. They offer the most protection and comfort.

Antionette Robinson, Certified Laboratory Technician at Pi Dental Center, states, “Whether you’ve had orthodontic treatment, crowns or implants, wearing a sports guard is important because it protects your investment in your teeth. Dental repairs are expensive. Keeping your teeth safe during athletic activities makes sense.”

An ideal sports guard is resilient yet comfortable and stays in place firmly during activities, allowing the wearer to speak clearly and breathe easily. A well-fitting sports guard makes you feel more confident and can actually improve your game.

How do I maintain my sports guard?

When your sports guard is not in use, it should be kept safely in its storage case. Wash the guard with cool water and soap after each use. Soaking your guard in mouthwash will help it to stay fresh. Avoid leaving your sports guard in direct sunlight or in a hot vehicle. High temperatures can damage your sports guard. Your sports guard may need to be adjusted periodically. Bring your sports guard to your dental visits for evaluation.

Before Sports Guards Were Used:

State-of-the-art sports equipment has not always been available. When Ted was playing high school football in 1957, helmets did not have masks. At age 16, Ted was a right defensive end for the Battlin’ Miners at Minersville High School in Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania.  Football was THE sport. There were only 100 kids in his graduating class and 2/3rds of them played football. In one game, all four of his front teeth were damaged when he took a hit to the mouth. They became loose a few days later and were extracted by his dentist. Ted had no front teeth at his high school graduation and for several years after that. Eventually, a removable flipper was made to hide the empty space. Later in life, Dr. Stout in Chestnut Hill delivered a fixed bridge. Ted was satisfied with his new teeth but, over time, the bridge’s supporting teeth required root canal treatment, then post and cores. Ultimately, the bridge needed to be replaced. The most cost effective solution was a dental implant supported prosthesis. Dr. Glenn Wolfinger placed a permanent prosthesis on four dental implants. Today Ted’s teeth look natural and feel better than they have in years.

What advice do we have for athletes and active people of all ages?

Wear a good quality sports guard! If today’s modern sports guards had been available in 1957, Ted might never have lost his teeth. One sports injury really did cause problems for a lifetime.

If a dental injury does occur, a prosthodontist can help.

Contact us if you have any questions, would like to have a sports guard made, or to schedule an appointment at Pi Dental Center.

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Interesting statistics:

Although 62 percent of organized sports-related injuries occur during practice, one-third of parents do not have their children take the same safety precautions at practice that they would during a game.

Safe Kids USA Campaign Web site. 2009.

According to the CDC, more than half of all sports injuries in children are preventable.

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/08/06/injuries-athletes-kids-sports/2612429/

Chris Raines
Web Site Administrator
Information Systems Manager
Marketing and Information Technologies Departments

Tags: sports guards, mouth guards, dental sports injury