The DMD Check-Up: Watchdog Says Toothpastes Contain Questionable Ingredients

August 19, 2016
Greg Kelly

Our weekly look at the dental industry's top stories.

A new report by an organic industry watchdog says even “natural” toothpastes sometimes contain dangerous chemicals. That story tops this week’s DMD Check-Up. Also making the list: Olympians outpace the general public when it comes to… cavities.

Popular Brand Toothpaste Are Toxic

(Common Dreams)

The Cornucopia Institute, an organic industry watchdog, is out with a new report uncovering “serious regulatory weaknesses and loopholes that allow for the use of questionable, even harmful, ingredients in toothpastes that could negatively impact users.” Plus much “natural” toothpaste, sold at premium prices, contain dangerous chemicals.

“Slam Dunk” for New York City Dentist

(New York Daily News)

A terrific sports story about a city dentist and pro basketball’s New York Knicks. “Dr. Daniel Rudolph, a 71-year-old with a thick New York accent, was the facilitator of the unusual relationship between Joakim Noah (player) and Phil Jackson (team president), playing the dual role of teeth cleaner and NBA intermediary.”

The Sad State of an Olympian’s Mouth

(Ars Technica)

“The average American adult is half as likely as an Olympic athlete to have cavities, based on data from the CDC and from a study of athletes competing in the most recent Summer Olympics. Another surprising finding related to Olympic teeth is that poor oral health is universal.”

Dentists Recommend HPV Vaccinations

(This Week)

The CDC is warning that human papillomavirus cases are on the rise and dentists are seeing the effects in their offices,” according to this news report from Ohio. “The difficult part with HPV is that many still see this as a sex-health issue," says a state health official. "We must destigmatize that vaccine ... and look at the lives it can save.”

ObamaCare Sicker Shock

(The Wall Street Journal)

A hard-hitting editorial from the nation’s top business media outlet on the Affordable Care Act: “Designers said the law would stabilize by its third year as insurers learned to price the exchange population. But turbulence is increasing, not decreasing, and the same dysfunctions can’t be found in other government-managed markets like Medicare Advantage or the FEHB Program.”

Improving Access to Oral Health Care for Adults in Medicaid

(Kaiser Family Foundation)

“To probe current opportunities, challenges, and strategies related to expanding access to oral health care for adults in Medicaid, the Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured recently convened a group of experts and stakeholders to discuss the issues.” Several key themes are highlighted.

Does a Doctor’s Kindness Actually Help Us Get Well?

(The Washington Post)

A thoughtful essay by a real healer: “It seems obvious: When doctors are kind, patients do better. But when scientists demand proof, persuasive evidence is hard to find. But kindness at every visit is never too much to ask. There is no burden added to the work of doctors if we expect them to be kind. Sometimes doctors don’t need to wait for evidence to do what is right.”

Hospital Oral Healthcare Not a Focus for Nurses

(Dr.Bicuspid.com)

Hospitalized seniors often aren't getting the oral care they need in the evening, according to a new Canadian study. “Many nurses seemed to view oral hygiene care as an elective intervention, different from other interventions such as wound care, vital sign monitoring, and medication administration,” reports the Geriatric Nursing journal.

Multicultural Americans Ahead on Oral Care

(PR Newswire)

Colgate is out with a national oral healthcare survey of multicultural Americans, specifically Hispanics, African-Americans, Asian Americans and Native Americans. Results show “diverse communities have a stronger sense of responsibility when addressing oral health issues, reporting more frequent brushing, flossing and mouthwash use than the overall US population.”

The “Typhoid Mary” of Dentistry

(New Jersey 101.5)

“A New Jersey dentist whose unsanitary practices were linked to 15 serious bacterial infections—and one death—is still being allowed to practice under a state consent order,” according to this news report from the Garden State. The state agreed to let Dr. John Vecchione “continue practicing because of the efforts he’d made to improve practices.”

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