Bad Breath and How to Get Rid of It

May 16, 2022 |

Bad breath or Halitosis affects an estimated 1 in 4 people. There are a number of possible causes, but the vast majority come down to oral hygiene.

Anyone can suffer from bad breath. It’s the third most common reason that people seek dental care, after tooth decay and gum disease. Potential causes include tobacco, food remains, dry mouth, bad dental hygiene, crash diets, drugs, throat conditions, or even some diseases like cancer, liver failure or gerd.

Simple home remedies and lifestyle changes, such as improved dental hygiene and quitting smoking, can often remove the issue. If the issue persists, however, it is advisable to visit a doctor to check for underlying causes.

Oral hygiene is the key to most bad breath issues. Other lifestyle changes and home remedies for bad breath including brush the teeth, floss regularly, clean dentures if you had one, brushing tongue, avoid dry mouth, and get a healthy diet.


Dentist in the Past

May 16, 2022 |

Before the late eighteenth century, the term ‘dentist’ wasn’t even used. Instead, care of the teeth was the responsibility of a range of different – and sometimes surprising – practitioners such as barber-surgeons.

What would it have been like to have a tooth pulled before the anesthetic? A range of equipment was certainly needed. Dental ‘keys’ were used to lever teeth out or even break them into pieces! If all else failed, some dental forceps also had a steel ball on the end of one handle, used to smash the offending tooth out and end the unfortunate patient’s ordeal.

It is worth sparing a thought for our predecessors, who endured untold pain and misery at the hands of a pre-modern dentist. Next time you’re sitting in the dentist’s waiting room too, be thankful for anesthetic and the modern preference for saving, rather than removing, teeth, wherever possible. Things were NOT always better in the past!

Dr Alun Withey, Wellcome Research Fellow, University of Exeter


Can I Use My HSA or FSA for Orthodontic Treatment?

May 16, 2022 |

In most cases, yes, you can use your HSA or FSA for eligible orthodontic treatment. Only the portion of your orthodontic payments(s) not paid by your dental insurance or any other plan may be considered an eligible expense.

Health Savings Accounts (HSA) and Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA), often offered by your employer, allow you to set aside money for qualifying health care expenses for yourself, your spouse and eligible dependents.

HSA and FSAs are types of savings account that let you set aside money on a pre-tax basis to pay for qualified medical expenses. By using untaxed dollars in an HSA or FSA to pay for your treatment, you save money.

Make sure to ask your orthodontics providers whether they accept such savings account. You can check by call them using iSmartOffice™.