Studies about powdered gloves

Lately, there have been studies performed that have indicated powdered gloves may be harmful to one’s health. As of January 18, 2017 they were not be used for patient care. You need not be concerned about this, as we have used NON-powdered, latex-free gloves for several years and will continue to do so for your safety.

Smile Arc

Occasionally my patients/parents inquire about the heights at which I choose to place my brackets. This is done to create the proper “Smile Arc” for my patients. The “Smile Arc” is the curved line the upper teeth make, back to front and left to right. This line should parallel the curvature of the lower lip upon “full smile” for proper aesthetics. Thanks for asking.

OrthoClassic H4’s

Many of my patients inquire about the new high-tech OrthoClassic H4 bracket system I introduced to the Houston area and am now employing, and how it compares to the Damon System I introduced to Houston in the mid – late 90’s. Having pioneered the Damon System, I noted the technological changes that were periodically made when the brackets were redesigned. I’m finding I have more control with the physical tolerances engineered in the OrthoClassic H4 system. Also, treatment times are becoming shorter. Thus, the change. Thanks for asking.


Many of our new patients, upon initial examination, exhibit clinical and radiographic signs of clenching and grinding, i.e. remodeling of the jaw joints, excess enamel wear, TMJ symptoms, etc. When asked about these habits most deny their existence or claim they must be doing them in their sleep.

Having treated patients with clenching/grinding issues since 1972, I have become quite aware that the great majority of them display these habits during the day, as well. Most often, they do them subconsciously during times of stress, while performing repetitive actions, to the beat of music, during intense concentration, etc. Stressful times seem to be the predominant occasion.

Habits are hard to break if we’re not aware we have them. What has worked well for our patients is to sit down with paper and pencil and write down all the stressful events they normally encounter during what they consider an average day, i.e. traffic, particular tasks at work or home, dealing with children, illnesses (pain), etc. Making these lists and reading them often enough to memorize them engages the brain to become sensitive to these events. Then, when experiencing these times of stress, my patients ask themselves the following questions:

  1. Is my tongue tightly suctioned to the roof of my mouth?

  2. Are my cheek muscles tight?

  3. Are my teeth clamped (closed) tightly?

  4. Am I grinding my teeth?

Clenchers, then, are to do the following:

  1. Break the suction the tongue has established with the palate;

  2. Separate the teeth from the clenching position, approximately a third of an inch;

  3. Massage the cheek muscles; and

  4. Take a deep, relaxing, cleansing breath.

Grinders are to do the following:

  1. Separate teeth as stated above;

  2. Massage the cheek muscles; and

  3. Take a deep, cleansing breath.

So, the keys are to identify the times when you are most likely to clench and/or grind and respond as instructed above. If you master the “awake hours”, you will find a dramatic decrease in grinding/clenching in your “sleeping hours.” This regimen will reduce the chances of you developing TMJ symptoms or losing very important enamel covering your teeth.

No MSG Sample Shopping List (Series) Eat Healthy, Eat Disciplined, Stop Hurting, and Feel Better

(Always read food labels and look for the hidden MSG alias names like Natural Flavors, Modified Food Starch, Yeast Extract, Malted Barley, Mono Sodium Glutamate, etc.)

Much has been researched and written on the effects of MSG (Mono Sodium Glutamate) on the human body. The following information provides much “food for thought”. I want my patients to be healthy and happy. It really is true that “we are what we eat”. This information is meant to inform. Of course, how it applies to each individual will vary, and each individual should consult their personal physician before adjusting their diets, as one may have conditions contraindicating the consumption of some of these food stuffs. Also, particular store references may not be complete. These are just ones of which I’ve been informed. Feel free to research the effects of MSG and let me know if you disagree with the studies you review.

Suggestion: Try to cook from scratch when possible!

Aloe Juice: is good natural drink to offset MSG inflammation improves digestion; dilute with Orange juice or make into hot tea with honey and sugar.

Bacon: Avoid at all times – All has MSG (Darn! I love bacon!)

Beef: Raw, no preservatives, no spice, wrapped in cellophane or butcher paper
Salt & Pepper only, no Meat Tenderizers
          No pre-seasoned anything

Butter: Buy Salted Butter only vs Sweet Cream Butter
             Check Sweet Cream Butter labeling for artificial flavors.
             Falfurius Brand is thought to be good.

Bread: Only Great Harvest Honey Wheat loaves cooked daily, unless you are on a Gluten free diet.
             No Malted Barley Wheat

Broth: Kitchen Basics is thought to be a good brand.

Chicken: Raw, no preservatives, no spice, only wrapped in cellophane or butcher paper
Salt and Pepper only
                No pre-seasoned anything

(To be continued)

The Startling Risks of Soft Drink Consumption (A Series) – Part 10: Osteoporosis

Phosphoric acid, added to give soft drinks a “bite”, actually pulls calcium out of the bones, increasing the risk of osteoporosis. Also, diet sodas are very high in sodium. Too much salt in the diet may cause more calcium to be excreted in the urine, further increasing the risk of osteoporosis. Frequent consumption of soft drinks may also increase the risk of osteoarthritis. It’s truly amazing the harmful effects soft drinks can have on our bodies. With all of this information “out there”, it’s surprising that so many people continue to consume them, in record amounts.


The Startling Risks of Soft Drink Consumption (A Series) – Part 9: Gastrointestinal Distress

One common problem on the rise in recent years, especially in teenagers, is general gastrointestinal (GI) distress and acid reflux. The common complaint heard is chronic “stomach ache”. In almost every case, if one successfully stops drinking sodas and caffeine, the symptoms diminish or disappear altogether.

You see, in addition to caffeine, sodas also contain an array of chemical acids as additives, such as acetic, fumaric, gluconic and phosphoric and citric acids, all of them synthetically produced. (This is why certain sodas work so well when used to clean car engines.) For human consumption, however, the effects are much less satisfying and quite precarious. Drinking sodas, especially on an empty stomach, can upset the fragile acid-alkaline balance of the stomach and other gastric lining, creating a continuous acidic environment. This prolonged acidic environment can lead to painful inflammation of the stomach and duodenal lining and over the long term, to gastric lining erosion. The carbonation in soda also neutralizes stomach acids, impairing the breakdown and absorption of essential nutrients. So, you can see, sodas and “sports drinks” aren’t just causing white scars/decalcifications on the teeth of orthodontic patients. They have been shown to be systemically harmful. (To be continued)

The Startling Risks of Soft Drink Consumption (A Series) – Part 8: Your Pearly Whites

When drinking soda, the teeth are bathed in sugary water which, also, contains either phosphoric or citric acid. This promotes dental caries (cavities). Dental experts continue to urge people to drink fewer soft drinks, especially between meals, to prevent tooth decay (due to the sugars) and enamel erosion (due to the acids). According to the report published in the March/April edition of General Dentistry, phosphoric acid in soda causes tooth enamel erosion, even with minimal exposure. “Drinking any type of soft drink poses risk to the health of your teeth”, said Kenton Ross, a dentist and spokesman for the Academy of General Dentistry. “My patients are shocked to hear that many of the soft drinks they consume contain nine to twelve teaspoons of sugar, and have an acidity that approaches the level of battery acid”, Ross said. (To be continued)

The Startling Risks of Soft Drink Consumption (A Series) – Part 6: Cancer Risks

Saccharin in Diet Sodas: “More than a dozen animal tests over the last thirty years have demonstrated the carcinogenic effects of saccharin in the bladder and other sites, particularly female reproductive organs, and in some instances at doses as low as the equivalent of one to two bottles of diet pop daily”. Although this mechanism has not been found to exist in humans, links between saccharin and diabetes have been shown to exist. A 100-year-old non-nutritive, non-caloric sweetening agent, saccharin is a petroleum derivative estimated to be three hundred to five hundred times sweeter than sugar. Its use has exploded over the last twenty years as a staple of the diet food and drink craze. Side Effects of Saccharin Sodium:

Plastic bottles: Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET) is used extensively in soft drink plastic bottles. PET bottles can release small amounts of dimethyl terephthalate, a compound which some experts believe to be carcinogenic, into foods and beverages. Source: The Safe Shopper’s Bible: A Consumer’s Guide to Nontoxic Household Products, by Samuel S. Epstein, MD.  (To be continued)