The DMD Check-Up: Marijuana Use Linked to Increased Gum Disease Risk


Here's our weekly look at the top dentistry-related news from around the web.

Frequent cannabis use may put individuals at higher risk of periodontal disease. That story tops this week’s DMD Check-Up. Also making the list: children have been hospitalized from the water at the dentist’s office, and there are increasing demands for dentists in NY.

Marijuana Use Linked to Increased Gum Disease Risk (

“US researchers have found that frequent recreational cannabis use—including marijuana, hashish, and hash oil—may be associated with elevated risk of periodontal disease,” according to a new study in the Journal of Periodontology. With pot decriminalization becoming more common nationwide, the research takes on added significance.

Many Children Hospitalized from Dentists’ Water (CNN)

“An outbreak that sent 30 children to Southern California hospitals and could have long-term effects on their health, is raising awareness about the risk of bacterial infection from water at the dentist's office,” according to this California news report.

Dentist Shortage Pains New York (lohud)

“New York’s increased demand for dentists is a real issue that warrants a comprehensive response from government and academia. Much like that lingering toothache, it would not be wise for us, as a state, to ignore this problem any longer,” so says the founding dean of the Touro College of Dental Medicine at New York Medical College. He has a plan, too.

The Best Electric Toothbrushes (Gadget Review)

It’s not uncommon for a patient to ask the opinion of a dentist about this product. So, after “factoring in price point, customer sentiment and ratings, and then on what will both clean well and motivate us to brush the recommended twice daily for two minutes,” the #1 spot goes to the Oral-B WHITE 7000 SmartSeries electric toothbrush.

Top Dental Group Takes Millions from “Big Soda” (

A contradiction? “Nearly 100 organizations, including the US government and the National Dental Association, have accepted millions of dollars in sponsorship funds from major soda companies,” according to a new study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine. Coca-Cola gave $215,000 to NDA over a three-year period.

Alaska Dentists Commit to Reducing Sugary Drink Consumption (

Seems right? “Under a new pilot program project, the state Division of Public Health is offering training to employees of dental clinics to screen patients for sugary drink consumption and advise them to curb the habit,” according to the Alaska public health website.

Doctor Care May Depend on Political Views (Los Angeles Times)

“A new study from researchers at Yale University details significant differences in the way primary care physicians from across the political spectrum approach medical issues that touch on hot-button topics.” The scientists say, “It’s imperative that doctors consider how their own political views may impact their professional judgments.”

Group vs. Solo Dental Practices: A Comparison Study (DentistryiQ)

Lots of data to look at here, but a worthwhile review for those dentists who want to bone up on the financial underpinnings of their practice. Fact: about 85% of US dentists practice solo.

The Forbes 400 List for 2016 (Forbes)

Here are some facts and figures about America’s wealthiest citizens “The country’s 400 richest are wealthier than ever, with a combined net worth of $2.4 trillion and an average net worth of $6 billion, both record highs.” Also, Bill Gates is #1 for the 23rd year running, with a net worth of $81 billion.

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