Dr Ronan Kennedy BDS (QUB)

Dr Ronan Kennedy
Clonmullen Lane
Co Offaly
T: 046 973 1304/973 3750

Opening hours

9.00am - 5.30pm

Monday and Wednesday

New patients welcome
Emergencies accepted

News - July 2017

Blocking yeast may prevent childhood tooth decay

dfdfdThough most tooth decay can be blamed on bacteria, the fungus Candida albicans may be a joint culprit in a common form of severe tooth decay affecting toddlers known as early-childhood caries. In earlier research, a team from the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine found that C. albicans, a type of yeast, took advantage of an enzyme produced by Streptococcus mutans to form a cavity-causing biofilm. The research appears in the journal PLOS Pathogens. C. albicans can't effectively form plaque biofilms on teeth on its own, nor can it bind to S. mutans, unless in the presence of sugar. Young children who consume sugary beverages and foods in excess are at risk of developing early-childhood caries. In a new study, the researchers have pinpointed the surface molecules on the fungus that interact with the bacterially-derived protein. Blocking that interaction impaired the ability of yeast to form a biofilm with S. mutans on the tooth surface, pointing to a novel therapeutic strategy.
"Instead of just targeting bacteria to treat early-childhood caries, we may also want to target the fungi," said Hyun (Michel) Koo, senior author on the study and a professor in the Department of Orthodontics and Divisions of Pediatric Dentistry and Community Oral Health. "Our data provide hints that you might not need to use a broad spectrum antimicrobial and might be able to target the enzyme or cell wall of the fungi to disrupt the plaque biofilm formation”. Koo and colleagues are now working on novel therapeutic approaches which can be potentially developed for clinical use.

From www.sciencedaily.com

When do wisdom teeth have to be removed?


Should you have a wisdom tooth removed if it is not causing you any pain? Oral and maxillofacial surgeon Hossein Ghaeminia of Radboud University Medical Centre in the Netherlands researched the risk of complications when removing these teeth. Wisdom teeth that do not cause complaints are often removed to avoid future issues. However, in the event of removal, complications such as infection of the wound and nerve damage may arise. These complications lead to a reduced quality of life. Should you have a wisdom tooth removed or simply leave it be?

To remove or not to remove?
Ghaeminia performed a systematic review of what has already been researched in this field. After conducting his own research, he determined that each patient must be considered individually. Ghaeminia: "On the one hand, surgical intervention is accompanied by a risk of complications, such as infection of the wound and damage to the sensory nerve of the lip and chin. On the other hand, leaving a problem-free wisdom tooth in place may eventually lead to more damage to the neighboring teeth."

Risk factors
One of the most frequent complications after removing wisdom teeth is infection. Ghaeminia examined which factors contribute to the risk of infection: "People who are 26 or older and women run a greater risk of infection, but smoking also appears to be a risk factor."
Ghaeminia compiled his conclusions into a pamphlet that can be used in clinical practice to improve patient care. It is a guide for both doctor and patient that should improve the process of deciding whether to remove a problem-free wisdom tooth.

From www.sciencedaily.com

Visiting virtual beach improves patient experiences during dental procedures

dfdfdImagine walking along a beach on a lovely day listening to the waves lapping and the birds calling. Then, as you turn to continue along the coast path feeling calm and relaxed you suddenly hear your dentist say: "Fine, all done, you can take the headset off now”.For patients at one dental practice in Devon, England, such virtual reality encounters are resulting in demonstrably better experiences in the dentist's chair.
In a study published in the journal Environment & Behaviour, a team of researchers at the Universities of Plymouth, Exeter and Birmingham worked with Torrington Dental Practice in Devon to find out whether experiences like these could improve patients’ experience during routine dental procedures, such as fillings and tooth extractions. Patients who had agreed to take part in the study were randomly allocated to one of three conditions: a) standard care (i.e., normal practice); b) a virtual walk around a beach (using a headset and handheld controller); or, c) a walk around an anonymous virtual reality city. Results found that those who 'walked' around the beach were less anxious, experienced less pain, and had more positive recollections of their treatment a week later, than those in the standard care condition. These benefits were not found for those who walked around the virtual city. Dr Karin Tanja-Dijkstra, lead author of the study, said: "The use of virtual reality in healthcare settings is on the rise but we need more rigorous evidence of whether it actually improves patient experiences. Our research demonstrates that under the right conditions, this technology can be used to help both patients and practitioners”.

From www.sciencedaily.com