Message in a Bottle Mailbag: Livionex dental gel, obturation with EdgeEndo, hockey, and the 2015 Oscars

Joshua Austin, DDS, FAGD, offers his preliminary opinion on Livionex, discusses options for obturation with EdgeEndo products, talks hockey, and gives his take on the 2015 Oscars.

Mar 9th, 2015
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The "Message in a Bottle Mailbag" is a monthly feature of the e-newsletter, Pearls for Your Practice: The Product Navigator. Each month, Editorial Director Joshua Austin, DDS, FAGD, answers reader-submitted questions to help you navigate your dental and hygiene product decisions (and more!). This month, he offers his preliminary opinion on Livionex dental gel, discusses options for obturation with EdgeEndo products, talks hockey, and gives his take on the 2015 Oscars.

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QUESTION:
Stacy, RDH, wrote: I have a patient whose calculus builds heavily between three-month recalls. She found Livionex [dental gel] and wanted to know if it would, in fact, help with the reduction of tartar. She has good oral hygiene. Could you report on any information you’ve acquired about this product? Thank you!

ANSWER:
Thank you for the question! Livionex dental gel is an interesting product. The studies that have been conducted thus far have had positive results, but they have also been proprietary and have used small sample sizes. I really want to see some large-scale, double-blinded, randomized, and controlled trials. I am hopeful but skeptical.

The main claims that Livionex makes are plaque-related and not tartar-related. Now, we all know that if you control plaque, you control tartar. That being said, some patients form tartar so quickly that brushing three times a day isn’t even enough. I asked a friend of mine about tartar-control products—he runs a perio program at a dental school—and his response was sort of surprising. He said his best results have come from Colgate Tartar Control. What an answer! It’s 2015, and we have nothing new and effective for tartar control? Amazing.

Traditional tartar-control toothpastes have pyrophosphates that prevent crystal growth. The initial deposition of brushite crystals still happens, but the pyrophosphates prevent their growth. At some point, someone will figure out a way to inhibit brushite crystals before they can be deposited. That will be a good day. Until then, we have to keep those scalers sharp.

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QUESTION:
Jack from Torrence, California, wrote: In the January 2015 issue of DE, you reviewed EdgeEndo files. I use a leading-brand file because the company offers matching-sized gutta-percha cones. How do you obturate after using EdgeEndo files?

ANSWER:
Great question, Jack. Yes, I have enjoyed using the EdgeEndo files. They clean well and feel consistent with the leading-brand files I’ve used.


EdgeEndo's EdgeCore thermal obturator

For obturation, EdgeEndo has corresponding options of all kinds for you. They have corresponding master cones if you want to do a warm vertical or lateral condensation technique. They have corresponding plastic-core gutta-percha coated obturators, similar to Thermafil. They also have obturators, similar to the new GuttaCore obturators; the carrier is made of cross-linked gutta percha with a soft gutta-percha coating. So fret not, Jack—EdgeEndo has you covered. Thanks for the question!

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QUESTION:

Kirsten, RDH, asked: Yes, I know you love baseball, but can we have some hockey references instead? It's so much more exciting than baseball. After all, as an editor once said, hockey and dentistry might as well be best buddies. A special mention of the New Jersey Devils would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

ANSWER:
Kirsten, you know I’m from Texas, right? Hockey isn’t exactly huge here. I’m actually on the medical team for our local International Hockey League (IHL) team, which is an affiliate for the Florida Panthers. When I go to the games, I have no clue about what is going on. All I see are a bunch of guys skating around. I can’t see any strategies happening on the ice.

The hockey players are all great, though. They are all down-to-earth, simple, gritty guys who love what they do. Most of the injuries that happen are lacerations. They always want their sutures quickly in order to get back on the ice.

As for the New Jersey Devils, the only thing I know about them is that some people think the neutral-zone trap that the Devils played during the ‘90s ruined hockey … but I have no idea what a neutral-zone trap is. I just picked that up while listening to smart hockey people talk. So there you go—a special mention of the Devils.

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QUESTION:
Danny from Montana asked: What did you think about this year’s Oscars?

ANSWER:
Well, Danny, I’m glad you asked. I love the Oscars. The night of the Oscars is my second favorite night of the year, following the Super Bowl. You might be asking yourself, “How in the world does someone who loves the Super Bowl also love the Oscars?” The answer is “gambling.” Yes, you can gamble on the Oscars. And I did!

This year, I got in on Selma for “Best Picture.” Going in, I thought Selma had a “puncher’s chance.” It was an amazing film, but the studio botched the campaign for it. When John Legend and Common received an Oscar for the song, “Glory,” I thought, for a brief moment, that it might just be Selma’s night. Then, of course, the night took a turn toward Birdman. I saw every single film that was nominated, and I can honestly say that I enjoyed Birdman the least (I enjoyed Whiplash the most).

I’m totally OK with everything that shook out in terms of the acting categories. J.K. Simmons deserved his award for his “supporting” role in Whiplash—although I have no clue how they figure out whether a role is “supporting” or “leading,” and I would have considered Simmons’s role to be “leading.” Either way, he was great!

But when the end of the night came, and Birdman won, I thought to myself: “Of course! Of course Hollywood gave its highest award to a movie about Hollywood.” Self-aggrandizing to the end, I guess.

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Editor's Note:Do you have a question for Dr. Austin? Is there a product you'd like to see him review? Or would you like to submit your own "Pearl"? Tweet to @pearlmail or send an email to pearlmail@pennwell.com. You might just see it in the e-newsletter, Pearls for Your Practice: The Product Navigator! If you're not a Product Navigator subscriber, click here to sign up.

MORE MAILBAGS
February 2015 | Avoiding complaints, treating lip biters, a baseball glossary, and the Super Bowl
January 2015 | The Navigator name, 3M ESPE's True Def, and college football playoffs

Joshua Austin, DDS, FAGD, is the editorial director for Pearls for Your Practice: The Product Navigator, an e-newsletter from DentistryIQ.com and Dental Economics. He also writes the "Pearls for Your Practice" column in Dental Economics. After graduating from the University of Texas Health Science Center Dental School, Dr. Austin associated for several years. During October of 2009, he opened a solo general practice in a suburban area of San Antonio, Texas. Dr. Austin is involved in all levels of organized dentistry and can be reached at jaustindds@icloud.com.

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