Thursday, April 7, 2011

WHO | World Health Day – 7 April 2011

Today is World Health Day!!

WHDPromoting awareness about antibiotic resistance is the agenda for this year. From my side, I don't prescribe antibiotics unnecessarily and ensure that my friends and patients complete the course of antibiotics whenever prescribed.

Click here for more details 

WHO | World Health Day – 7 April 2011

Friday, January 15, 2010

Solar Eclipse and beliefs

The millennium's longest solar eclipse is here and scientists all over the world are running around to watch this amazing natural phenomenon..

Adding to it are the beliefs..a lots of them..mostly a list of 'dont's' ..don't have food, don't go out..don't even drink water during the eclipse..and so on..and the effects they say are worst to some people born at certain timings during which some of the specific stars were can look into Indian astrology to have an idea about the stars and planets that rule our to let go of them as blind or superstitious beliefs is left to the such belief is to put a blade of dried grass known as 'darbe' (in Kannada) to the food or water that you mom made carry some in my pocket today..

Nevertheless, i often keep thinking about the fact that most of us turn to gods and superstitious beliefs especially when a majority of things are going wrong..when everything is right we think its our ability to do things right and when something goes wrong we blame it on fate..

I think we should follow alike..either believe in such things at all times..good or bad..or do not believe at all..ultimately its left to one's belief's.

By the way if you are interested in watching the solar eclipse..go through this website..the author explains the easiest and safest way of watching a solar eclipse..

I am yet to watch one though..blame it on my work schedules or my laziness.. lol

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Mouthwashes: Are they for regular use?

One of my friend was concerned about the regular use of mouth washes. Being a dentist it is my duty to help people realise the benefits and side effects of such things. So I did a small research about mouthwashes and have compiled the evidence.

Halitosis is an unpleasant or offensive odour, emanating from the oral cavity. In approximately 80% of all cases, halitosis is caused by microbial degradation of oral organic substrates. Major degradation products are volatile sulphur-containing compounds.

Undoubtedly, the basic management is mechanically reducing the amount of micro-organisms and substrates in the oral cavity. This includes the use of toothbrushes, flossing and rinsing yor mouth.

Masking products such as mouthrinses/mouthwashes are not, and antimicrobial ingredients in oral healthcare products are only temporary effective in reducing micro-organisms or their substrates.

Good short-term results were reported with chlorhexidine. Triclosan seems less effective, essential oils and cetylpyridinium chloride are only effective up to 2 or 3 h. Metal ions and oxidizing agents, such as hydrogen peroxide, chlorine dioxide and iminium are active in neutralizing volatile sulphur-containing compounds. Zinc seems to be an effective safe metal at concentrations of at least 1%.

The effectiveness of active ingredients in oral healthcare products is dependent on their concentration and above a certain concentration the ingredients can have unpleasant side effects. (1)

Antimicrobial mouthrinses are generally considered safe and effective in reducing plaque and gingivitis, and should be part of a comprehensive oral health care regimen that includes brushing, flossing and rinsing to prevent or minimize periodontal disease. (2)

One concern with the regular use of alcohol-containing mouthwash was oral cancer, and the occurrence of oral cancers is not supported by epidemiological evidence. (3)
One of the major drawbacks of mouthwashes containing products such as chlorhexidine is the occurrence of stains on long term use. (4)

So, the final verdict?

Daily use of mouthwashes are safe, provided mechanical methods of cleaning are being effectively used to keep the teeth clear of plaque and other debris.
Keep a watch on the colour of the teeth; if they seem to be getting discolored, it’s time to stop using the mouthwash. Occasional use of mouthwash is preferable to daily use. Rinsing your mouth with water at regular intervals can be preferred instead of repeated mouthwash use.

If you notice bad breath, deposits on the teeth, or bleeding from gums, it is always better to consult a dentist to get your teeth cleaned and know more about oral hygiene.

(1) van den Broek AM, Feenstra L, de Baat C. A review of the current literature on management of halitosis. Oral Dis. 2008 Jan;14(1):30-9.
(2) Lemos CA Jr, Villoria GE. Reviewed evidence about the safety of the daily use of alcohol-based mouthrinses. Braz Oral Res. 2008;22 Suppl 1:24-31.
(3) La Vecchia C. Mouthwash and oral cancer risk: an update. Oral Oncol. 2009 Mar;45(3):198-200. Epub 2008 Oct 25.
(4) Adams D, Addy M. Mouthrinses. Adv Dent Res. 1994 Jul;8(2):291-301.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Food Additives

Was browsing about some articles and came across this one about artificial sweeteners. Didn’t have time to rephrase it. Quite an useful article.


Artificial sweetener, "Diet" foods, including soft drinks, drink mixes, gelatin desserts, low-calorie frozen desserts, packets.

Aspartame (Equal, NutraSweet), a chemical combination of two amino acids and methanol, was initially thought to be the perfect artificial sweetener, but it might cause cancer or neurological problems such as dizziness or hallucinations.

A 1970s study suggested that aspartame caused brain tumors in rats. However, the Food and Drug Administration persuaded an independent review panel to reverse its conclusion that aspartame was unsafe. The California Environmental Protection Agency and others have urged that independent scientists conduct new animal studies to resolve the cancer question. In 2005, researchers at the Ramazzini Foundation in Bologna, Italy, conducted the first such study. It indicated that rats first exposed to aspartame at eight weeks of age caused lymphomas and leukemias in females. However, the European Food Safety Authority reviewed the study and concluded that the tumors probably occurred just by chance.

In 2007, the same Italian researchers published a follow-up study that began exposing rats to aspartame in utero. This study found that aspartame caused leukemias/lymphomas and mammary (breast) cancer. It is likely that the new studies found problems that earlier company-sponsored studies did not because the Italian researchers monitored the rats for three years instead of two. The Italian tests remain controversial, with the industry contending that they were flawed in several ways and with the FDA stating its scientists couldn't evaluate the studies because the researchers refused to provide their original data.

In a 2006 study, U.S. National Cancer Institute researchers studied a large number of adults 50 to 69 years of age over a five-year period. There was no evidence that aspartame posed any risk. However, the study was limited in three major regards: It did not involve truly elderly people (the rat studies monitored the rats until they died a natural death), the subjects had not consumed aspartame as children, and it was not a controlled study (the subjects provided only a rough estimate of their aspartame consumption, and people who consumed aspartame might have had other dietary or lifestyle differences that obscured the chemical’s effects).

The bottom line is that lifelong consumption of aspartame probably increases the risk of cancer. People—especially young children—should not consume foods and beverages sweetened with aspartame, should switch to products sweetened with SUCRALOSE (Splenda), or should avoid all artificially sweetened foods. Two other artificial sweeteners, SACCHARIN and ACESULFAME-K, have also been linked to a risk of cancer.


Friday, July 3, 2009

Love chemistry Sex physics


Was working on some topic when I came across this quote. Thought it was funny, then I realised its actually factual. Quoted by an anonymous person who says “Love is a matter of chemistry, but sex is a matter of physics”. Well I thought love and sex are both related to chemistry i.e., the hormones in our body. Well physics applies, but I am not sure how. Any enlightened people can put in some ideas??