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Jacob O. Layer DMD, PC February 2012 Newsletter
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Vitamin D = Fewer Cavities
You already know that good dental health depends on regular oral health practices and a healthy diet low in sugar. But did you know that vitamin D also plays a role?

Scientists and researchers for the past 100 years have noted geographical variations in dental health. A study as far back as the Civil War showed an 8% military service rejection rate in Kentucky for lost teeth compared to a 25% rate in New England.

The connection between geography and sunlight exposure was made in the 1930's when researchers found that subjects living in more sunny areas had half as many tooth decay issues as those in less sunny areas.

In a study conducted in Oregon in the 1950's, dental decay was lower on the sunny side of the state and more pronounced on the rainy side. Vitamin D from sunlight's ultraviolet rays was identified as a factor in calcium metabolism. Both the sun's rays and vitamin D induce cathelicidin, an antimicrobial polypeptide that fights oral bacteria.

Vitamin D has many health benefits in addition to reducing dental decay. If you don't spend much time outdoors or if you live somewhere without a lot of sunlight, make sure you and your family are receiving sufficient levels of this important vitamin.

If you have questions or concerns about vitamin intake, give us a call or contact your physician.
Toothy Tid Bits: February Dedicated to Teeth
What? You thought it was the month of love because of Valentine's Day? Surely you must have forgotten February 9th, National Toothache Day, and February 28th, National Tooth fairy Day!

It's ok – I forgot, too.

But believe it or not, Valentine's Day has to with our teeth as well. How? Chocolate of course! I've been saying for years that chocolate is very good for you and, thankfully, some researchers out there agreed with me and they have study results to prove it! Apparently the cocoa bean (the main ingredient in chocolate) has anti-bacterial properties specific to the bacteria that causes cavities. They are even starting to put cocoa in some toothpastes. MmmMmm chocolate toothpaste……

So don't skip on the chocolate this year for your loved ones because you'll be showing your love for them AND their teeth! Also, don't worry about trying to celebrate Feb 9th and Feb 28th; I mean, who on earth wants to celebrate a toothache?

Until next time, keep smiling! :)

-Jocelyn Codington, RDH

Did You Know?

George Washington's wooden teeth?

Most of us have heard of this urban legend; well here's the real story:

By the time he became the first US President at age 56, George Washington had lost nearly all of his teeth. Reports suggest that between 1789 and 1798 Washington had several sets of dentures made, at least two of which were made by Dr. John Greenwood (a prominent dentist at the time). Washington's dentures were carved from ivory (either hippopotamus or elephant) and gold. Not wood.

One of his dentures was stollen from the Smithsonian in the 1970's and to this date has never been recovered. At least one of Washington's denture sets were connected by springs that pushed them against his upper and lower jaw ridges for retention. Enough to make anyone look stern. We think you'll never look at a one-dollar-bill the same way again.

Now you know!
Dr. Layer and his highly trained team would love to hear from you and answer your questions. Simply click the "submit question" link below this message. Referrals are appreciated.

Jacob O. Layer DMD, PC | www.layerdental.com | 541-734-0970
1485 East McAndrews Rd., Medford, OR 97504



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