Today’s FDA Reception Room Issue for patients is available online now! Go to floridadental.org/public/tfda-reception-room-issue to read this issue.
A new Adult’s Oral Health & Well-Being Survey indicates that a significant portion of the American population is not familiar with certain key dental terms. This unfamiliarity may lead to unease in the dental chair during discussions with your oral health care professional.
The FDA has a Dental Glossary for Patients in the 2019 Reception Room issue of Today’s FDA — coming soon to your FDA member dentist’s office and our website. In the meantime, check it out at bit.ly/2JPJRst.
Many people go to the dentist not just because they want good oral health, but also because having a great smile is a good confidence booster and makes them more likely to smile more often. But it also impacts those who see that dazzling smile.
“Every day we see people who tell us about how their friends, family and business colleagues are also affected by their new smiles,” says Dr. Ana Castilla, an orthodontist and author of the book, The Smile of Your Life: Everything You Need to Know for Your Orthodontic Journey. “They are just more willing to smile, and they didn’t anticipate how much that would impact others in their life.”
Studies have shown that people believe smilers are reliable, relaxed and sincere. A study published in the Journal of Neuropsychology reported that seeing an attractive, smiling face activates the orbitofrontal cortex, the region in the brain that processes sensory rewards. This suggests that when someone sees a person smiling, they feel rewarded.
As a result, Dr. Castilla says some of the things a smile can do for you include:
1. Make you more attractive. “Your smile is your best accessory,” Castilla says. “Studies have shown that people who smile are automatically viewed as more attractive, reliable, relaxed and sincere. Seeing an attractive face can be considered a rewarding stimulus, and when a person sees a smiling face, the region of their brain that processes sensory rewards is activated significantly more than when viewing a non-smiling face.”
2. Relieve stress and boost your mood. Science has shown that smiling increases your health and happiness, not just at the moment, but even in the long run, Castilla says. “The more you smile, the healthier and happier you will be,” she says. How so? When you smile, your brain releases signaling molecules called neuropeptides to the rest of your body, she says. These neuropeptides influence your brain, body and behavior in many ways, including reducing stress, aiding sleep and elevating your mood.
3. Lower your blood pressure. When you smile, your brain also releases feel-good neurotransmitters, such as dopamine, endorphins and serotonin. These chemicals calm your nervous system by lowering your heart rate and blood pressure. “It’s great to know that even when you skip out on going to the gym, you can still work on your health by smiling away,” Castilla says. “Although, I don’t recommend skipping the gym.”
4. Help you make others happy. Smiling not only has the power to elevate your mood, but also can change the moods of others. “If you’re grumpy or rude, then you’re likely to put others in a bad mood or even put them off,” Castilla says. “The same thing happens with laughter and smiling. What happens when you smile at someone? They smile back, of course. Even babies know what to do. Smile at a baby and they will smile right back at you.”
“A beautiful smile is so much more than just straight teeth,” Castilla says. “It is health, confidence and joy. It is what you display during the happiest moments of your life, such as when you graduate from school, get married or your child is born. It is a reflection of your spirit, and make no mistake, it can change your life.”
Reprinted with permission from Castilla Orthodontics. The original post can be found here.
By the American Dental Association
Recent, wide-spread news coverage based upon a recent research study may raise unwarranted concern about the safety of certain types of dental floss. The ADA Science Institute finds the data insufficient to support the conclusions presented in this research and associated media coverage.
No restrictions on the use of dental floss have been issued by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the regulatory agency that oversees clearance of dental products marketed to the public. It also is important to bear in mind that this is a single study. Public health policy and safety decisions should be based on the collective weight of scientific evidence.
The study, published in the Journal of Exposure Science & Environmental Epidemiology, involves a small sample of 178 women and their self-reported use of a wide array of consumer products and foods.
The study measured blood samples from 178 women and found that those who reported using a certain brand of dental floss had higher levels of a type of PFAS called PFHxS (perfluorohexanesulfonic acid) than those who didn’t.
One of many shortcomings of this study, according to the ADA Science Institute, is that the study measured fluorine as a marker of PTFE (polytetrafluoroethylene), though the women in the study who reported using a particular brand of floss were found to have elevated levels of PFHxS.
PTFE often is used in food and beverage, pharmaceutical and cosmetic applications. The fact that the researchers were able to find the PTFE marker in several brands of floss does not mean that it is the source of the PFHxS in the women.
Given that this was a retrospective study including self-reported use of products, there are likely many other differences between women who did and did not report having used the brand of floss mentioned.
The ADA sees no cause for concern based on current evidence, and above all continues to encourage people to clean between their teeth daily with floss or another interdental cleaner as part of the ADA’s daily oral hygiene recommendations.
This news release was published on the ADA’s website on Jan. 14, 2019 and can be found here.