Oct 292013
 
Cotterill, Christopher (Passport Photo)

Christopher A. Cotterill, DMD, assistant clinical professor in the ECU School of Dental Medicine

In the last few days of October, Halloween is only a few days away with Thanksgiving following soon after and generally marking the beginning of the holiday season.

This festive time of year is wonderful for allowing enjoyment of traditions and socializing with friends and family. However, this often involves increased intake of candy, confections, and other treats that normally would not be consumed in such quantity or frequency.

Maintaining good oral health along with these dietary changes is important for people of all ages, but it is especially important for children.

This is one reason that a year ago the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) and the Ad Council instituted the Partnership for Oral Health. This campaign, http://2min2x.org, was designed to raise awareness of oral health in children, parents, and caregivers.

As exemplified by its web address, one of the keys to good oral health is maintaining good oral hygiene through brushing children’s teeth for 2 minutes 2 times a day.

Other good oral health practices include:

  • Brushing teeth after meals, especially at night, and not having snacks or sweetened beverages between brushing and bedtime.
  • Supervising a child’s brushing and flossing until they are old enough to do a good job on their own. When children develop this ability can vary slightly, but for most children it’s around age 8.
  • Using dental floss to clean between teeth at least once a day, every day as soon as any of the adjacent teeth begin to touch each other. Use of floss is important for the removal of plaque and food between the teeth where the bristles of a toothbrush cannot reach. If traditional use of dental floss wrapped around fingers is found to be too difficult for the child, parent, or caregiver, then the use of disposable flossers or other flossing aids can help make this easier.
  • Delivering topical fluoride to the teeth through toothpaste, rinse, or fluoridated water can help strengthen enamel and make it more resistant to the acidic attack that is involved in the tooth decay process.
  • Seeing a dentist regularly. The AAPD recommends that all children have a dental home.  Properly establishing a dental home means that all children should see a dentist by one year of age and on a regular basis for the rest of their lives, similar to recommendations for wellness checks with pediatricians. This is important because dentists can detect small problems before they become bigger and start to cause pain. 

These and other recommendations can be found on the AAPD’s website at: http://www.aapd.org

-Christopher A. Cotterill, DMD, assistant clinical professor

ECU School of Dental Medicine

Department of Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontics

 

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Sep 272013
 
Dr. Joseph V. Califano

Dr. Joseph Califano, professor and division director of periodontology in the Department of Surgical Sciences at the ECU School of Dental Medicine, has been elected to serve as one of nine directors of the American Board of Periodontology (ABP).

The ABP is one of nine specialty boards recognized by the American Dental Association. The board serves to advance the art and science of periodontics and elevate the quality of periodontal care through the examination, certification, and recertification of periodontists.

 The ABP develops and oversees the administration of the written and oral exams required to become a board certified periodontist or diplomate of the ABP. Califano was a board examiner for seven years prior to a national run this year for a directorship.

Califano will be installed as one of the ABP’s nine directors at the American Academy of Periodontology Annual Meeting this month. He will serve a six-year term.

 “Dr. Califano was elected a director by the membership of the American Academy of Periodontology, which says a great deal about his reputation in the profession. Directors are to represent the best of the best in periodontics. Our students are the recipients of his expertise, and we are fortunate to have him on our faculty,” said Dr. Grishondra Branch-Mays, chair, School of Dental Medicine Department of Surgical Sciences.

 A native of Bayshore, NY, Califano received a certificate in periodontology, a PhD in microbiology and immunology, and a D.D.S. from Virginia Commonwealth University. 

 Prior to ECU, Califano was the director of post-graduate periodontics at the University of Illinois College of Dentistry in Chicago. 

 Califano’s specific areas of research include pathogenesis and immunopathology of periodontitis, aggressive periodontitis, microbial genetics of periodontitis associated bacteria, and computer guided implant dentistry.

Along with his membership in American Board of Periodontology (ABP), Dr. Califano is also a member of the American Dental Education Association and the American Dental Association.

Aug 232013
 

 Serving Dental Patients

     The ECU School of Dental Medicine is part of an educational institution and is serving its mission to both educate dental students and dental residents and provide dental care for the public. The school offers dental clinics both at ECU and in rural communities in North Carolina.

ECU Clinics

      School of Dental Medicine student and resident clinics are accepting new patients. Please call 252-737-7834 to learn more or to make an appointment.

East Carolina University
School of Dental Medicine
Ledyard E. Ross Hall
1851 MacGregor Downs Road
Greenville, NC 27834

Community Service Learning Centers (CSLCs)

      ECU School of Dental Medicine Community Service Learning Centers are open in the both Ahoskie and Elizabeth City. Faculty dentists, dental residents, and dental hygienists are providing high quality, state-of-the-art care to adult, pediatric, and special needs patients. Fourth-year students will join CSLC oral health professionals in 2014.

      Community Services Learning Centers in Sylva and Lillington are currently under construction and expected to be operational in early 2014. Centers in both Spruce Pine and Davidson County are scheduled for completion in late summer 2014.

      To schedule an appointment at Ahoskie or Elizabeth City CSLCs, please call the numbers below.

ECU School of Dental Medicine Community Service Learning Center – Ahoskie, 100 Health Center Drive, Ahoskie, NC 27910 Phone 252-332-1904

ECU School of Dental Medicine Community Service Learning Center – Elizabeth City, 1161 North Road Street, Elizabeth City, NC 27909  Phone 252-331-7225 or 331-7226

 

 

 

Aug 062013
 

Dr. Linda May, assistant professor at the ECU School of Dental Medicine, teaches anatomy to dental students. Dr. May is conducting research on the connection between exercise during pregnancy and development of the baby.

To qualify to be part of the research, you must be:

- between 18 and 40 years of age

- 16 weeks pregnant or less

- 300 pounds or less

- able to be active

- willing to come in 3 times per week during your pregnancy

Dr. May and fellow researchers will be your trainers during your pregnancy. Follow the link to Dr. May’s previous research presented in the New York Times:

http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/04/13/exercising-for-two/

For more information about the study, please call or email Dr. Linda May:

252-737-7072 or Mayl@ecu.edu.

Jun 072013
 

This week, we’ve enjoyed kicking off the summer season – and the launch of our new ECU Division of Health Sciences Twitter and LinkedIn pages – by participating in National Sun Safety Week. It’s a topic that hits home for all of the schools and colleges within our division, as sun damage can affect all parts of the body.

Our research-based tweet tips are a good place to start for those of us who need a sun safety refresher course heading into the warmest months of the year. But protecting your skin from harmful rays can be just as much about what not to do.  With that in mind, here are four ways some sun worshippers get burned:

1)      Skipping sunscreen on overcast or cloudy days. A common misconception is that the risk of sunburn on cloudy days is less, but the sun’s damaging UV light can pass through clouds (in fact, up to 40% of UV radiation reaches earth on a completely cloudy day!). So, don’t let the weather be what determines your SPF use; wear it no matter the forecast.

2)      Putting off dermatology check-ups. While skin cancer is by far the most common type of cancer, it is also one of the most treatable. The key is to get checked regularly – especially if you fall into any of these high-risk categories.

3)      Neglecting to reapply. Many times, we think we’re covered by lathering up with sunscreen once. Not true, says the American Academy of Dermatology: sunscreen should be applied every 2 hours and/or after swimming or sweating heavily, perhaps after a rigorous game of beach volleyball. Keep that sunscreen bottle by your bag, rather than buried at the bottom of it.

4)      Assuming the sun can’t find you in certain places, times or by wearing “protective” covering. We often think about getting sunburned in the obvious places and ways: usually, on the beach, in a bathing suit, on a hot summer day. While that’s certainly a high-risk setting for overexposure, UV rays can also hit us in everyday places we don’t think about: in the car, through our clothes, and in mountainous or wooded areas. The lesson: use sunscreen liberally no matter the time, place – or outfit.

Keep sun safety in mind all year round and you’ll ward off skin cancer – and be able to enjoy the warm summer weather that much more.