Archive for Dentistry

Insurance Additions/Alternatives

Health insurance is a large part of keeping your body healthy. If you ask any Presidential candidate, they feel that not enough Americans are insured. The obvious reason why so many Americans are uninsured is cost.

According to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), the U.S. is projected to spend over $2.2 trillion on health care in 2007, or just under $7,500 per U.S. resident. Health spending in 2007 is projected to accountfor 16.2% of GDP

In 1970, U.S. health care spending was about $75 billion on health care, or $356 per resident, and accounted for 7.2% of GDP.

Health care spending has risen about 2.4 percentage points faster than GDP since 1970.

CMS projects that by 2016 (nine years from now) health care spending will be over $4.1 trillion or $12,782 per resident, and account for 19.6% of GDP.

The primary reasons for the increase include longevity increase, inflation, and population growths.One insurance alternative is healthcare discount plans. These plans cost a low monthly fee and provide discounts with medical providers in your area. One such plan is AmeriPlan®

AmeriPlan® is not a health insurance plan, but a discount program. The company has a network of thousands of doctors and providers that have agreed to offer their services at discounted prices to members of the program. AmeriPlan® offers a variety of plans starting from $20 each, and plans can be purchased ala carte to customize your needs.

 

Plans like this are also very nice for additions to your health insurance. For instance, if your plan offers medical but not dental and vision, you can purchases a discount vision and medical plan.

 

These plans also work well for college aged students who no longer have coverage by their parents, but are in great health and have few health care needs.

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Teeth Whitening

Is teeth whitening safe?

According to most research studies, teeth whitening has proven to be both safe and effective. Gels that contain 10% of carbamide peroxide (or 3.6% of hydrogen peroxide) are considered safe as they have not been shown to cause damage to tooth enamel. While dentists may sometimes provide gels with higher conentrations, the formulas that they recommend also contain fluoride which helps offset this potential side effect.

Over-the counter whitening

If you can’t afford cosmetic dentistry, over-the counter whitening may be an option for you. This option is to be used in conjunction with visits to the dentist, however, because it is not a replacement for getting your teeth professionally cleaned.

We recommend the following product for over-the-counter whitening:

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Crest Whitestrips

According to most customer reviews of this product, Crest Whitestrips did follow through with the promise to ‘whiten teeth within two weeks’; some people did not enjoy the process but they do enjoy its rewards.

Why do teeth darken?

According to the American Dental Association, there are a few reasons why teeth darken. These reasons include medications, smoking, and certain foods such as coffee and tea.  In addition, as you age, the outer enamel gets worn away revealing the darker tooth beneath. According to the American Dental Hygienists’ Association, 96% of patients experienced some lightening effect as a result of teeth whitening if their teeth had been stained by coffee, tea, or tobacco.

Are there any side effects of teeth whitening? 

In some cases patients have reported short-term side effects that included sensitivity due to the nature of the teeth whitening gel or procedure.

Resources

American Dental Association
http://www.ada.org

American Dental Hygienists’ Association 
http://www.adha.org

How Stuff Works: Tooth Whitening
http://health.howstuffworks.com/tooth-whitening4.htm

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