Acupuncture May Ease Anxiety Over Dental Work

Did you know that fear of the dentist keeps many people from getting the dental care they need, but new research suggests that an ancient Chinese treatment — acupuncture — may provide quick relief. One in 20 people suffer from odontophobia — severe anxiety about dentistry — and a third of all people say they have moderate anxiety when seeing the dentist, the researchers said.

“We can offer patients a safe, fast and cheap treatment for their odontophobia,” said lead researcher Dr. Palle Rosted, from the department of oncology at Weston Park Hospital in Sheffield, England. Other available treatments, such as distraction, relaxation techniques, tranquilizers and sedation, can be time-consuming or have side effects, Rosted said. “Moreover, in some patients, the more traditional treatments are not sufficient. By offering acupuncture, the dentist has an extra tool in his bag,” he said. The report is published in the March 29 issue of Acupuncture in Medicine. What do you think about acupuncture being used in the dental practice?

March 30, 2010 at 4:42 pm Leave a comment

Benefits of Membership: FREE Webinar on Health Reform

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act was signed into law by President Obama on March 24, 2010. This health care reform law includes many oral health provisions in the areas of Coverage and Access, Prevention and Infrastructure, and Workforce and Training. The Michigan Oral Health Coalition, Virginia Oral
Health Coalition, and Oral Health Kansas have joined together to sponsor a FREE webinar on April 12 (2-3 pm EDT) for our members to detail the oral health provisions of the law. The webinar will be presented by Dr. Burton Edelstein, founder of the Children’s Dental Health Project. Register today at

March 30, 2010 at 4:38 pm Leave a comment

Marine City Resumes Fluoridation

Several local dental professionals, residents and a representative from the health department showed their support for water fluoridation at the Feb. 18 Marine City Commission meeting. St. Clair County Health Department
Medical Director Dr. Annette Mercatante named fluoride as “one of the most important health components in the community.”

Mercatante said during her extensive research, she found “no real scientific controversy” with fluoride administered in the proper quantities. Resident Kim Turner said she was opposed to fluoridating city water,
pointing out the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s warning on toothpaste to keep it out of reach of children. Turner said she has avoided fluoride and has had no problems with tooth decay.

Mayor Bob Lepley presented a list of more than 100 national and international organizations that recognize fluoride as a health benefit in preventing tooth decay. Lepley said his research led him to take a profluoride
position. He made a motion to take steps aimed at getting another fluoridation unit for the water plant to resume the practice of treating city water. The vote was 5-1 for fluoridation, with Turner the dissenting vote.

March 24, 2010 at 8:13 pm Leave a comment

Medicaid Billing and CHAMPS Webinar April 19

With last year’s switch to CHAMPS, many dental providers are still experiencing issues related to claims and reporting. Join us April 19 from 12 to 1 p.m. for “Medicaid Billing and CHAMPS.” The program is a great opportunity for the entire dental office staff to learn firsthand about the CHAMPS system and get answers to those nagging
billing questions. Fee: $25. Registration info at

March 24, 2010 at 8:10 pm Leave a comment

Legislative Update on MDCH Budget

Coalition members and staff continue to advocate for the reinstatement of Medicaid adult dental. Today, the Senate approved SB 1152 (Michigan Department of Community Health budget) which fully reinstates adult dental. The estimated cost would be $5.25 million General Fund, which
would bring in $14.3 million in federal match. We will continue our advocacy efforts.

In the past two weeks, the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Community Health held hearings on the budget. Board Chair Patti Ulrich and Janice Joseph, DDS testified on behalf of the Coalition. The Subcommittee’s next public hearing is scheduled April 19 (9 a.m.) at the State Capitol. If you are interested in testifying or
attending, please contact Karlene Ketola at 517.381.8000, Ext. 218.

March 24, 2010 at 8:08 pm Leave a comment

Dr. Vandenbush Accepts New Position

The Coalition, along with the Michigan Department of Community Health, says farewell to Dr. Sheila Vandenbush. Dr. Vandenbush has accepted a new position in Dallas. Her final day with the Department is this Friday, January 22. There will be a reception tomorrow from 2 to 5 p.m. at the MDCH offices located at 109 W. Michigan Avenue in Lansing.

January 20, 2010 at 4:19 pm Leave a comment

11 Foods Your Dentist Wouldn’t Touch

Did you know that the average American eats approximately 140 pounds of sugar and other sweeteners per year? Here’s an interesting article from Men’s Health magazine “11 Foods Your Dentist Wouldn’t Touch.”

January 20, 2010 at 4:18 pm Leave a comment

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