The Pandemic and Your Teeth

Post by: Gerarda on 28 Oct 2020

We have noticed a marked increase in broken teeth and sore jaws with TMJ (temporomandibular joint) problems since the pandemic of COVID-19 started and people were in lockdown; enough to warrant more than a passing thought. The need for mouth guards to prevent people from grinding and clenching their teeth is correspondingly up.

The Spanish Dental Association (Ilustre Colegio Oficial de Dentistas de Málaga, COEMA) hasn’t done a survey to verify this increase in dental problems since the pandemic started, but reports from colleagues of pandemic-related dental problems are common says Dr. Mikael Kahn. Mikael says, “Bacteria doesn’t take a break, nor does it know there is pandemic! One can postpone dental treatment for a while, but sooner or later it gets to a point where one can´t put it off any more.”

The combination of being in lockdown and therefore, delaying treatment, the stress of being without a job or wondering how one will pay one’s rent, or the fact that one has adverse working conditions, has caused the problems of broken teeth and sore jaws.

We are seeing the amount of stress people are under, having a severe impact on their teeth because of clenching and grinding. This in turn has created problems with their jaw and TMJ. Additionally, with people working from home more often than not they don’t have appropriate chairs to sit in for long periods of time and therefore, are hunched over at their computers. This in turn can increase grinding (bruxism).

In addition to stress and delayed care, we are seeing more cavities as people are snacking more because they are working from home and have ready access to foods that they would not ordinarily have at work. Consequently, people are also brushing less frequently. When people get out of their routines, many times the oral hygiene follows suit.

Having reviewed our records from the same period as last year from June to October, we have seen a 54% increase in the need for mouth guards, 87% increase in broken teeth treated either by composite repair or crowns and a 12% increase in treatment for cavities.

While we can´t say definitively that these statistics are a direct result of the lockdown we experienced in the spring, we can say that we have treated more broken teeth and TMJ problems than ever before during the same period.

National Dentist´s Day

Post by: Gerarda on 06 Mar 2020

March 6th every year we show appreciation to dentists all over the world who keep our pearly whites in tip top shape. This day is also a way to bring awareness to dentistry so that people can learn how best to care for their teeth. It is also a reminder for those who have neglected their teeth or avoid going to a dentist to schedule a checkup.

Nothing makes a dentist happier then when a patient arrives and it is obvious they have good oral hygiene as they brush and floss regularly.

What the patient can do:
1. Decide on an oral health routine. Include both brushing and flossing and remember to floss after you have brushed.
2. Book that dental checkup you have been putting off. Ask your dentist to show you have to brush your teeth so you are not wearing away enamel.
3. If you have children, brush their teeth until they are mature enough to do it for themselves. Once you have brushed your child´s teeth, give them the brush so they feel they are doing it as well.
4. Smile and show off those pearly whites. It shows the job you do and that of your dentist.
5. Take a picture of those beautiful teeth and post it on your social media accounts.

Tips for a healthy dental routine:
1. Brush at least twice a day for at least 2 minutes.
2. Brush gently using elliptical strokes.
3. Use a soft toothbrush.
4. Brush after eating.
5. Floss after brushing.
6. See your dentist twice a year or as your dentist recommends.
7. Eat a balanced diet and limit eating and drinking between meals.
8. Limit the amount of citrus you eat and drink.

A visit to a dentist is a scary proposition for many people. Remember though, dentistry has come a long way from when Dr. John M. Harris started the world’s first dental school in
Bainbridge, Ohio in 1828.

Evolving dental technology and education are two of the things that make a visit to a dentist much more pleasant than in earlier days. That being said nothing beats a dentist who has the hands of a sculptor, the precision of an engineer, the eye of an artist and the experience to combine all of these professions to carry out either a simple or a challenging treatment and still make the result look natural.

That is in essence Dr. Mikael G. Kahn or as he is so affectionately known, Mikael.