2844 Summit Street, Suite 109
    (at 29th Street)
Oakland, CA 94609
(510) 444-7277
Email: klouiedds@gmail.com

Kenneth G. Louie, DDS

Family Dentistry


Further reading from the desk of Dr. Louie...

Vaping Interferes With Wound Healing, Study Indicates

The Daily Mail (UK) (10/18) reported that vaping interferes with wound healing, according to research published in JAMA Facial Plastic Surgery by Boston University researchers. Corresponding author Dr. Jeffrey Spiegel, who is chief of facial plastic surgery at Boston Medical Center, said, “Based on our findings, e-cigarettes are not a safe alternative to traditional cigarettes as it relates to timely wound healing,” and this should be considered “before and after surgery.” Based on experiments on rats, he said, “Smoking and vaping appear to be equally detrimental to wound healing and to be associated with a statistically significant increase in tissue death.”

Osteoporosis Meds May Cause Jaw Bone Destruction

A group of drugs commonly taken for the treatment of osteoporosis and cancer affecting the bone has, on rare occasions, caused the bone around surgical sites in the jaw to die or not heal.  The class of drugs, called bisphosphonates, includes Fosamax, Boniva, Actonel, Aredia, and others (generic names end in             -dronate).

Although death of the jawbone, or osteonecrosis, following surgical procedures, like extractions, gum or bone surgery, or even root canal treatments, can be caused by other factors, bisphosphonate-associated osteonecrosis is of particular interest given the large number of patients taking these medications.  The incidence of osteonecrosis is very rare with oral medications, but significantly increases with intravenous administration of the drugs.

Always notify all of your healthcare providers of your health and medication history (past and present).  As always, any information you give us will be kept confidential.

Gum Disease Linked to Cancer

For years, research has found a direct relationship between gum disease and systemic diseases like diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Recently, a university study has found that chronic periodontitis, a common disease of the gum and bone, can increase the risk of developing squamous cell carcinoma, a type of cancer, in the head and neck.  Periodontitis, although potentially detrimental to your health, is usually preventable and often reversible if identified and treated early.  Good oral hygiene is the key to prevention.

Another good reason to floss and brush everyday, and have your teeth and gums professionally checked and cleaned regularly.

Who Needs Teeth Anyway?

Some people feel dentistry is a non-essential health service.  You probably know someone who is missing some teeth and claims they get along just fine. Maybe they are used to partially chewing their food and not smiling too much, and maybe they attribute the wrinkles in their face to old age.  Teeth do serve many vital functions, without which our lives would be diminished.

A full set of teeth allows us to completely chew our food.  It's not just about eating food, but adequately breaking up the food so it can be properly digested. Swallowing large pieces of food causes us to eat more.

Missing teeth also affect our speech.  They can cause the mouth to collapse (giving you a sunken-in appearance), a bad bite (or malocclusion), increased drooling and rash at the corners of the mouth, and jaw joint (or TMJ) problems.

If you don't care about losing a tooth or two, does anyone else?  Besides, who wouldn't love that snaggle-tooth smile on Halloween Day.