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Canadian polar bear has teeth extracted


An 11-month old polar bear has had to have several teeth taken out at a Canadian zoo after they became broken and infected. Baby Aurora was found in Churchill in Mantibo, Canada, apparently having been abandoned by her mother and left to fend for herself in the wild. Vets examined the youngster and found that she was extremely thin, with several broken teeth.

Aurora was transported to the Assiniboine Park Zoo in nearby Winnipeg for treatment; head veterinary dentist Dr Colleen O’Morrow oversaw the sedation of the bear and extraction of the two teeth – one adult tooth and one baby tooth – that had become infected. She is now recovering in the newly constructed Polar Bear Conservation Centre, where she will soon be introduced to another 11-month old baby bear, Kaska.

Head of the zoo’s veterinary services, Dr Chris Enright, said that ‘in the wild this sort of tooth decay absolutely happens but in captivity we want to address it – we want her as comfortable and as healthy as she can be. This kind of dental surgery is much the same as working on humans but doing it on zoo animals adds a whole new complication. Right now, she might only be about 110lbs but she still has the attitude of a 600lb predator – so it’s certainly not safe to just ask her to open her mouth.’

Dinosaurs may be first creatures to develop toothache


Scientists from China, the USA, and Canada have been studying the fossilised jawbone of a Sinosaurus and have discovered that the animal, presumed to have lived around 190 million years ago, could be the earliest creature to suffer with toothache. X-rays were taken of the teeth and it was found that some of them were damaged, possibly after the dinosaur bit into something hard.

Co-author of the report Xing LiDa told China Daily that ‘It was common for carnivorous dinosaurs to lose teeth, but this specimen we were studying was different. Its tooth socket was completely filled, which indicates the tooth loss was because of dental problems instead of external force.’ The skull was found in Lufeng Basin of the Yunnan province in 2007 and was expected to have 13 or 14 upper teeth, but was found to have several broken teeth still in the sockets. Zing explained the apparent damage, saying ‘When the dinosaur’s teeth were lost or removed while it was alive, the bony socket remodelled over time, so that there was no longer a tooth socket.’

The researchers also found that this kind of problem was common with mammals but not with reptiles, such as dinosaurs. Canadian Palaeontologist Phil R Bell suggested that the Sinosaurus might have damaged its teeth while eating hard nuts, he also added that ‘The study of disease and other abnormalities in the fossil record can reveal unique insights into the behaviour, biology and development of extinct animals. For example, among theropod dinosaurs, injury-related trauma like bites, exostoses, fractures, infection and stress fractures are the overriding cause of osteopathy.’

New product from providers of Botox aimed at boosting eyelashes


After cornering the market in anti-aging treatments, the people behind Botox injections are currently developing a similar product which is designed to thicken and improve eyelash growth. Botox producers Allergan are working on a product called Latisse, which should help eyelashes to grow longer and also give them more volume.

The main ingredient of Latisse, bimatoprost, was used to treat glaucoma and one of the side effects was that the eyelashes became noticeably thicker and longer over the course of the treatment. At the moment, the product is not available in the UK but more than 4 million women in America, India, and Canada currently use it to give their eyelashes a boost. Latisse is being tested by Britain’s Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency, according to the Sunday Times Style magazine.

Research has shown that the active ingredient bimatoprost can double eyelash thickness, darken lashes by up to 18% and lengthen them by up to 25% in just eight weeks, with daily usage. Latisse, unlike Botox, is not injected; it is applied in a similar fashion to eyeliner but can only be obtained with a prescription.

Allergan’s website also lists some of the possible side effects, which include; ‘increased brown pigmentation of the coloured part of the eye which is likely permanent. Eyelid darkening may occur and may be reversible. Hair may grow on skin that Latisse frequently touches. Common side effects are itchy and red eyes.’

Justin Bieber toothbrushes ‘ideal for cleaning invisible braces’


A range of new Justin Bieber toothbrushes - for both adults and youngsters - have been launched by Brush BuddiesJustin Bieber must certainly have one of the biggest teen fan bases of any star – and now his most loyal fans can keep their invisible braces clean with a new themed toothbrush.

Toothbrush brand Brush Buddies has released a new line of Justin Bieber toothbrushes, available in both adult and child sizes. One of the toothbrushes in the range even plays a Bieber tune for the two minutes brushing time recommended by dental experts, ensuring children clean their invisible braces for the correct amount of time.

For teeth care and invisible brace cleaning on the go, the Justin Bieber Oral Care Travel Kit could be ideal – this kit contains a brush, a tongue scraper, some Bieber-themed floss and a timer to ensure the optimum two minutes' cleaning is carried out.

Bieber hails from Canada and shot to fame after posting videos of himself singing on the internet. He has previously worked with rapper Ludacris and is currently in Australia on a world tour.

Dental implant dilemma for dentists


Dental implant dilemma for dentistsDental implants are an effective method of replacing missing teeth but dentists in Canada are uncertain about performing the procedure on young people.

In an article for Canada's Oral Health Journal, Dr Todd Welch has conveyed uncertainty in performing dental implants on teenagers due to the fact that facial and jaw development may not be complete.

However, Dr Welch acknowledged the loss of confidence a young person would feel after losing a tooth and suggested dentists across the world are faced with a dilemma.

Dental implant surgery has proven to be a hugely successful method of tooth repair in adults, he stated. The procedure includes the use of a fake root which is placed within the bone to give the appearance of a real tooth.

Dr Welch added: "This issue has been studied in giant literature and also proven in clinical practice."

"Sometimes, placing implants too early can be remedied by changing the crowns which attach to them."ADNFCR-2621-ID-800482021-ADNFCR

Elderly people ‘may face more problems that need emergency dentistry than before’


Emergency dentistry could become a problem among the elderly. The new generation of elderly people may be more in need of emergency dentistry than their predecessors, one expert has claimed.

Dr Mary McNally, an associate professor of dentistry at Dalhousie University in Canada, told the Vancouver Sun that because of advances in oral hygiene, people are now more likely to keep their teeth well into old age, whereas once they would have had dentures at a relatively young age.

However, she explained that as baby boomers get older and become less able to look after their own oral hygiene – as well as perhaps needing medicine that dries out the mouth – they may suddenly start losing teeth to decay and needing procedures like dental implants.

"There are a lot of people out there with a lot of good dental work, but we can anticipate that there will be issues as care patterns change," Dr McNally commented.

In January 2011, Dr David Mady told the Windsor Star that elderly people need good oral healthcare on a regular basis.

He suggested that the people who look after them may be able to help with this.


New cosmetic dentistry device ‘could help those with cleft palates’


Cleft palates could be corrected with the help of a device similar to invisible braces in reverse.A professor of orthodontics and biomedical engineering has created a device which he believes could use cosmetic dentistry to help correct cleft palates.

Dr Tarek El-Bialy from the University of Alberta in Canada has designed a device which sits on the outside of the teeth and pulls outward on them in the same way that invisible braces would push in.

This expands the teeth and the jaw without the patient having to be referred for surgery.

Dr El-Bialy hopes that if children with cleft palates begin wearing his new device from the age of seven, it will prevent the need for a surgeon to have to cut their jaws in the future.

“I’m looking for a company right now to get it from the prototype to the commercialisation so the patient can use it,” he commented.

According to the Cleft Lip and Palate Association, the condition affects approximately one in 700 babies born in the UK, making it the most common congenital craniofacial abnormality.


Laser teeth whitening ‘could help make smiles brighter’


A growing number of people are seeking out brighter smiles and laser teeth whitening could be a great solution for many, it has been claimed.

The Daily Mail reported that the treatment works by applying a bleaching agent to the teeth, which is then activated using a laser.

Results for the treatment are often very good, with many being able to improve teeth colour by up to six shades in a single sitting.

According to the publication: “Traditional laser whitening uses one laser across all the teeth at the same time, but the latest treatment from Canada uses a tiny laser to treat each tooth individually.”

Elsewhere, the Beaming White Forever White Teeth Whitening Headset was recently unveiled costing $40 (£27.70), but boasting a take-home teeth whitening kit that also includes headphones to allow users to listen to music while they brighten their smile.ADNFCR-2621-ID-19804954-ADNFCR

Poor oral health ‘can lead to other conditions’


People could be in danger of other conditions if they do not look after their oral health.

People have been warned that failing to have in place a good oral health routine could put them at higher risk of developing a range of illnesses.

Research carried out in Canada has shown that conditions including heart disease, diabetes and respiratory illnesses can all be linked to having poor overall oral health.

Indeed, the report noted harmful bacteria in the mouth can find their way into the bloodstream when a person does not take care of their teeth and gums properly and this, in turn, can result in serious health complications.

Elsewhere, Dr David Mady Jr recently told the Windsor Star that people who keep their teeth in good condition have faster check-ups with the dentist and suffer from less stress as a result.

He noted that while this will ensure a person’s teeth are in the best condition, it will also enable them to spend less time in the dentist’s chair when they come in for a check-up.

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