Is it summer vacation yet? The weather is warmer and the flowers are blooming and we can’t wait to head to the pool or the beach and relax! We’re already making plans to get away and we’ve provided some tips in this newsletter to help you with your dental health while you’re away. We’ve also rounded up some of the medical conditions and diseases that are recognized in May, to bring awareness and support to those who are affected by them. (So many are recognized that we’ve grouped them together and dubbed May Medical Awareness Month.) We also can’t forget to celebrate our mothers, mother figures, and caregivers on Mother’s Day!
In This Issue:
- Medical Awareness Month
- Happy Mother’s Day
- Waiting Room Reopened!
- Oil Pulling
- iTero – Wellness Scan
- Summer Vacation Dental Tips
- Honoring Our Team Members
- Recipe of the Month: Chickpea Pancake with Pea Salad
- YouTube Channel
- Please Leave us a Review!
Medical Awareness Month
May brings awareness to several medical conditions and diseases and there are just too many to specifically call out. Below are some of the awarenesses that May focuses on:
ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis)
Borderline Personality Disorder
EDS (Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome)
MCS (Multiple Chemical Sensitivity)
We would like to remind you that it is important to prioritize your health and wellbeing by regularly seeing your doctor or primary healthcare provider. Regular check-ups can help detect potential health issues early on, and help you manage and prevent health problems before they become more serious.
It is recommended that you consult with your healthcare provider on a regular basis to discuss any health concerns, address any symptoms or changes in your health, and receive necessary screenings or tests. Your healthcare provider can also provide guidance on maintaining a healthy lifestyle and recommend preventive measures to reduce the risk of developing certain health conditions.
Happy Mother’s Day
As we celebrate Mother’s Day, it’s important to remember that motherhood comes in many different forms. Whether you’re a biological mother, adoptive mother, stepmother, grandparent, or any other mother figure, your love and dedication to your children is what matters most.
We also recognize that Mother’s Day can be a difficult time for those who have lost their mothers or have strained relationships with them. We want to extend our love and support to you as well.
We believe that every person, regardless of gender or identity, has the ability to nurture and care for others like a mother. So to all the caregivers, role models, and mentors out there – we honor and appreciate you.
Happy Mother’s Day to all those who embody the spirit of motherhood in their own unique way.
Waiting Room Reopened!
Effective Monday, 05/15/23, our waiting room at Suite 108 will be reopened. You no longer need to call upon arrival and may enter the waiting room to check-in for your appointment. Masks are optional.
However it is still mandatory to contact us in advance of your appointment if you are experiencing a fever, cold, or flu-like symptoms. DO NOT enter the waiting room if you have symptoms of any illness.
You may continue to call from the parking lot and wait in the hallway if you prefer to do so.
What is Oil Pulling?
Oil pulling is a traditional Indian folk remedy that involves swishing oil in the mouth for several minutes, typically coconut, sesame or sunflower oil, then spitting it out. Proponents of oil pulling claim that it can improve oral hygiene, freshen breath, and promote overall health.
While there is some anecdotal evidence to suggest that oil pulling can help improve oral hygiene, there is currently no scientific evidence to support its effectiveness. The American Dental Association (ADA) does not recommend oil pulling as a substitute for standard oral hygiene practices such as brushing, flossing, and regular dental checkups.
That being said, swishing with oil is unlikely to cause any harm, and some people find it to be a pleasant addition to their oral hygiene routine. You can judge for yourself if you find benefit from oil pulling.
Teeth whitening has become increasingly popular in recent years, as more and more people seek to improve the appearance of their smiles. With the rise of social media and the emphasis on having a perfect smile, it’s no wonder that teeth whitening has become a booming industry.
Methods of Teeth Whitening
There are several different methods of teeth whitening, ranging from over-the-counter options to professional treatments offered by dentists. Over-the-counter options include whitening toothpaste, strips, and gels. These products contain a lower concentration of hydrogen peroxide than professional treatments, which can lead to less dramatic results.
Professional teeth whitening treatments, such as Zoom, are performed by a dentist or dental hygienist and often involve the use of a higher concentration of hydrogen peroxide. This whitening process involves applying a hydrogen peroxide gel to the teeth, which is activated by a special light. The light helps to break down the hydrogen peroxide, which penetrates the enamel and dentin layers of the teeth to remove stains and discoloration. The whitening treatment typically takes about an hour to complete, and can provide dramatic results in a single visit.
Your dentist can also provide professional at-home whitening kits. These kits include custom-fitted trays and a bleaching gel, which are used at home over a period of several days. This option offers a balance between the convenience of over-the-counter options and the effectiveness of professional treatments.
Risks of Teeth Whitening
While teeth whitening can provide a dramatic improvement in the appearance of your smile, it’s important to consider the risks associated with the process. Teeth whitening can cause tooth sensitivity and gum irritation, and overuse of whitening products can lead to permanent damage to tooth enamel. It’s important to consult with a dentist before beginning any teeth whitening treatment, as they can provide guidance on the best method for your individual needs and monitor the progress of your treatment.
iTero – Wellness Scan
We’re currently performing dental wellness scans in our office with our new iTero scanners. This is a type of digital scan that is used to create a 3D model of your mouth and teeth. The scanner is a handheld device that uses a wand to capture images of your teeth and gums. The images are then processed to create a detailed 3D model that can be used for a variety of dental applications.
These wellness scans can be used for many dental applications, such as restorations, mouth guards, dentures, and implant planning. The 3D model created by the scanner can be used to design and create custom solutions that are tailored to your individual needs.
One of the key benefits of the iTero Wellness Scan is its speed and accuracy. The scanner can capture detailed images of your teeth and gums in a matter of minutes, and the resulting 3D model is highly accurate. This can help to reduce the need for additional appointments or adjustments during treatment, as the 3D model can be used to create a precise treatment plan from the outset. These scans are particularly useful when developing a treatment plan for teeth alignment. We recently shared that we’re now offering Invisialign in our office which has been made possible by the iTero scanner.
If you’re interested in learning more about the iTero scanner, Invisalign, or how either can benefit your dental care, ask us about it during your next dental appointment.
Summer Vacation Dental Tips
We’re coming close to the end of the school year and summer vacation is just around the corner. Here are some quick tips to keep your teeth healthy while you’re away from home.
1. Don’t forget your toothbrush! Seems simple enough, but with everything else you have to prepare it might be the last thing on your mind. Don’t worry though! If you do forget your toothbrush, most hotels have free toiletries, just ask the front desk.
2. Stay hydrated! Drinking water directly benefits your teeth. It’s easy to get dehydrated while swimming or drinking alcohol without realizing it, which prevents your mouth from producing enough saliva. A dry mouth promotes bacterial growth because there is less saliva to wash away plaque. Prevent tooth decay and promote overall health by staying hydrated.
3. Mouthguards protect your teeth! Biking, skateboarding, baseball, soccer—all great outdoor sports, but one fall or accidental contact can cause serious damage to teeth. If you have a mouthguard for school sports, don’t forget to wear it for summer activities as well. And, if you don’t have a mouthguard, now is a good time to think about getting one. You can use a ready-made guard, or we can custom-fit one especially for you. Talk to us about your favorite sports, and we’ll suggest ways to protect your teeth while you enjoy all the physical activities warm weather brings.
4. Limit sugary food and beverages! During the summer, it’s easy to consume food or beverages with a high sugar content, especially sodas or alcohol. Try to limit your sugar intake as best you can, but also make sure you’re still brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing at least once a day to prevent tooth decay.
5. Sugarless gum! The final travel tip is to pack sugarless gum and try to chew some after eating a meal, if you are unable to brush and floss your teeth right after. Sugarless gum helps to stimulate the flow of saliva in your mouth, and this helps to keep your teeth clean.
Enjoy your summer and safe travels!
Honoring our Team Members
To learn more about our team members, visit Our Team page on our website.
MVP – May
Every month we recognize a team member who has gone above and beyond, for our patients or other team members.
In April, we recognized our dental assistant Rodney as the master of lab work and light bulb changes! He is a great teacher and mentor who is always lending a helping hand. We appreciate his funny jokes and antics that make our days more enjoyable.
(And, he maintains our dental equipment enabling it to run smoothly, is one of our resident MacGyvers, and delivers an amazing rendition of “Happy Birthday” that makes us all smile.)
Thank you, Rodney!
Invisible Worker Recognition
Every month at our All-Teams meetings we recognize a team member who makes our day-to-day operations run smoothly, despite their contribution not being obvious to many of us.
In April, we recognized Ryn. Only a few of us actually see Ryn one Saturday each month when she works at the front desk. Since we reopened in June 2020 after COVID shutdown she’s been planning, drafting, editing and publishing our monthly newsletters. She also created and manages Dr. Levy’s lecturing website at http://drhlevy.com
Now that we’re back to managing our own marketing, Ryn took on our Facebook postings, and improving on and maintaining our practice’s website at http://drhlevyassoc.com
. Ryn is also supporting Wendy in the creation of educational videos for our YouTube channel, https://firstname.lastname@example.org/about.
Chickpea Pancake with Pea Salad
This gluten free pancake made with chickpea flour is a staple of Italy known as socca or farinata, and can be served with any cooked vegetable.
- 1 cup (92 g) chickpea flour
- 3 Tbsp. plus ¼ cup olive oil, divided
- 1¼ tsp. Diamond Crystal or ¾ tsp. Morton kosher salt, divided, plus more
- 12 oz. sugar snap peas, snow peas, and/or asparagus
- 2 cups fresh green peas (from about 2 lb. pods) or frozen, thawed
- 1 tsp. tahini
- Zest and juice of 1 lemon
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 2 Tbsp. coarsely chopped pistachios
- 1 large garlic clove, finely grated
- Torn mint leaves (for serving)
- Flaky sea salt
- Whisk chickpea flour, 1 Tbsp. oil, 1 tsp. Diamond Crystal or ½ tsp. Morton kosher salt, and 1 cup water in a medium bowl. Let sit 30 minutes to hydrate.
- Meanwhile, if using sugar snap or snow peas, remove strings and stems, then cut some in half. If using asparagus, cut off woody ends and discard; coarsely chop.
- Place a rack in middle of oven. Set a 10” cast-iron or other ovenproof skillet on rack; preheat oven to 475°. Cook green peas in a medium pot of boiling salted water until tender, about 4 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to another medium bowl. Cook snap peas, snow peas, and/or asparagus in pot until tender but with some bite, 1–2 minutes. Drain; pat dry. Transfer to a small bowl.
- Add tahini, 1 tsp. lemon juice, and 1 Tbsp. oil to bowl with snap peas; season with kosher salt and pepper. Toss to coat; mix in nuts.
- Add garlic, ¼ cup oil, ½ tsp. lemon zest, 1 Tbsp. lemon juice, and remaining ¼ tsp. kosher salt to bowl with green peas; season with pepper. Using a fork, smash mixture to make a thick spread.
- Carefully remove skillet from oven and pour in remaining 1 Tbsp. oil; swirl to coat. Add chickpea batter and quickly return pan to oven. Bake pancake until set and crisp around edges, 18–20 minutes. Using a spatula, transfer to a plate.
- Spread smashed pea mixture over pancake. Spoon dressed pea mixture over. Top with mint and remaining lemon zest. Season with sea salt and more pepper.