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In brief: The dangers of "medium COVID"; internet addiction and caries in teens

Oct. 18, 2022
Learn about medium COVID and what it means to people's health; the connection between internet addiction and cavities in teenagers; and more.
Elizabeth S. Leaver, Digital content manager

The implications of "medium COVID"

At this stage of the pandemic, most people are familiar with long COVID. But, according to the Atlantic, for the majority of vaccinated people who suffer longer effects of the virus, “the worst complications will not surface in the early phase of disease ... nor can the gravest risks be said to be “long term.” Rather, they emerge during the middle phase of post-infection, a stretch that lasts for about 12 weeks after you get sick. This period of time is so menacing, in fact, that it really ought to have its own, familiar name: medium COVID.”

Dental Medicare update

Following the failure to pass comprehensive Medicare benefits that many Democratic lawmakers advocated, changes proposed by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Studies (CMS) in Medicare rules may be a “step in the right direction,” according to a Columbia University spokesperson. The CMS review followed an unsuccessful effort by congressional Democrats to pass comprehensive Medicare dental coverage for all beneficiaries, a move that would require changes in federal law. The CMS-proposed changes could be announced in November and take effect as soon as January, but they “don’t yet address the full extent of dental needs among seniors ... including a lack of routine care,” said the spokesperson.

Internet addiction and caries

A study of Japanese high schoolers found an indirect relationship between internet addiction (IA) and a prevalence of caries, noting IA’s association with lifestyle behaviors such as short sleep duration, frequent consumption of soft drinks and sweet snacks, irregular mealtimes, and late-evening snacking. It went on to say that “the study participants with IA had poorer oral health behaviors, such as less frequent toothbrushing and not brushing teeth before bed.”

“Done so badly it was unbelievable”

Dental tourism in Turkey is on the rise in Europe, with some 150,000 to 250,000 patients seeking dental treatment there each year. But the British Dental Association has sounded the alarm about the practice, warning of the "considerable risks ... of cut-price treatment" abroad, warning of many cases of infections and "ill-fitting crowns and implants that fell out." One British patient said of her treatment that "I had big gaps underneath my gums, and you could see all the metal bits (of the implants). It was done so badly it was unbelievable.”

About the Author

Elizabeth S. Leaver | Digital content manager

Elizabeth S. Leaver is the digital content manager for Endeavor Business Media's dental group. She has a degree in journalism from Northeastern University in Boston and many years of experience working in niche industries specializing in creating content, editing, content marketing, and publishing digital and magazine content. She lives in the Boston area; you can reach her at [email protected].