I Got a Canary for Christmas!

canary-systemA dream came true for me this year, when due to a number of serendipitous events I ended up with a Canary for Christmas!

While our family has enjoyed a number of these heavenly songbirds as family pets over the years, this “Canary” is not an actual bird but a new technology.  Like the proverbial “canary in the coal mine”, this Canary is also used to detect subtle changes thereby preventing future problems.

The Canary System

Known as The Canary System, “it is a precise, low-powered laser based instrument that detects the presence of cracks and tooth decay before they are large enough to appear on dental x-rays.  When placed on the tooth, a low-powered, pulsating laser light is shone on the tooth during a 3 second scan.  Measuring the crystal structure of the tooth, the laser light can penetrate below the tooth surface and permit detection of tooth decay as small as 50 microns (20 times smaller than a millimeter) and as deep as 5mm from the tooth surface”.

Canary Number

Using a complex algorithm, The Canary System converts the information obtained into a Canary Number on a scale from 0 to 100.  The lower the number the healthier the enamel, the higher the number the higher suggestion of cracks and tooth decay.

There are a quite a number of evidence-based, peer-reviewed studies to support this new technology.  In fact, an independent clinical study led by Dr. Ben Amaechi at the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio, released on March 18, 2015, found The Canary System “to exhibit superior performance compared to bitewing radiography for the detection of proximal caries”.

To put this simply for the public; The Canary System is more accurate than check-up x-rays!  And in case you did not realize this yet, there is no radiation!

I have wanted to have this technology in my office for the last 4 years so that we are able to monitor remineralization therapy; the healing of teeth.   I do believe that our teeth are no different than any other part of the body.  Given the raw materials that they need and stopping the behavior that caused the problem in the first place, if it is not too advanced, we can reverse and repair the damage.  Now, we have an objective way to measure that healing.

I have signed-up for a webinar this afternoon to help me better understand how to use this wonderful, new technology and how I can incorporate it into my daily clinical practice.  Hopefully, as The Canary System becomes more widely used and accepted, it will become a standard of care in all dental offices.

I welcome your feedback. You can connect with me via email or telephone, leave a comment right here on the site or join in the conversation on Facebook and Twitter.

Until next time,

Kathleen

Professional Reactions to My Last Blog on Flossing

58986866 - young woman flossing teeth in front of mirror

I had wondered when I published last month’s blog on flossing if anyone would respond to the picture that we chose to accompany the article.  As I had hoped, a number of Dental Hygiene colleagues responded to the CDHA (my blog posts appear on their site), to alert them of the mistake that I had made.  I was notified of such and here is the truth.. Continue reading

To Floss or Not To Floss

58986866 - young woman flossing teeth in front of mirror

Recently, a patient brought to my attention an Associated Press release that made it to the evening news, stating officials have never really researched the effectiveness of regular flossing.  She then asked me to comment on whether I think it is necessary to floss or not to floss.

While I was aware of the limited data available supporting this oral health care practice, I have personally observed, anecdotally, that the effects of some kind of in-between bacterial disruption on a daily basis really does help to reduce bleeding gums and inflammation. Continue reading

5 Reasons Why I Recommend ECO-DENT DailyCare Toothpowder

Eco-DentAs a holistic registered dental hygienist, I am often asked by my patients, family and friends what “toothpaste” I recommend. In most cases I suggest that they try ECO-DENT DailyCare Toothpowder and I actually give out samples right here in my office for them to try.  There are many reasons why I recommend this toothpowder over a regular toothpaste, but here are my top 5 reasons why I choose to recommend ECO-DENT DailyCare Toothpowder.

5 Reasons Why I Recommend ECO-DENT DailyCare Toothpowder: Continue reading

Silence

finger on her lips. silence gesture

My second Intention Word for 2016 is SILENCE!

I did not realize how noisy this world was until I quit my job in mainstream dentistry some eight years ago and began to focus on creating silence in my life as part of my healing.

I had worked in an open-concept dental office for roughly eighteen years where the sounds of high-speed drills, ultrasonic scalers, televisions, telephones, doorbells and people talking bombarded and permeated the race-against-the-clock practice of modern dentistry were common every day noise. Continue reading

Dental Bone Cavitations; a Surgical Intervention

Cavitations - surgical intervention

In my November blog I left off with the announcement that I had the privilege of attending an actual dental bone cavitation surgical appointment with my patient on November 9th in Toronto. I neglected to mention the very important fact that there was a diagnostic appointment prior to booking that surgery. At this appointment a manual exploration of all four wisdom tooth extraction sites was performed and three of the four areas in question revealed some sponginess to the bone when pressed with the patient noting some sensitivity in these areas as well! The most sensitive area being the bottom left. Continue reading

Dental Bone Cavitations – Exploring 3 Important Questions

dental cavitations

Last month’s blog post left off with 3 very important questions that I had about Jaw Cavitations:

• How many of the patients that I see in my clinic have these silent areas of infection?
• How can I help them find out if they have one?
• What is the potential risk to the rest of the body from not addressing these pockets of diseased bone? Continue reading

Holistic Oral Health Summit – Diagnosis & Treatment of Cavitations

dental hygienist King City

In my spare time last week I endeavored to watch as many featured speakers as possible on the Holistic Oral Health Summit.  While I have heard a number of these experts speak in the past, some of the information was familiar but there was a lot of new information that has left my mind reeling. I think the area that most intrigued me concerned the diagnosis and treatment of Cavitations.

What is a Cavitation? Continue reading

Do You Really Need to Have Your Teeth Professionally Cleaned?

Independent dental hygienist King City

I have been asking myself over and over during the last year: “Do people really need to have their teeth professionally cleaned”?  I have begun to ask this question because I have had a couple of clients over the last year that did not, in my professional opinion, need to have their teeth cleaned at their continuing care appointment. After completing my assessment, I discussed my findings with these clients and then left it up to them to decide whether to proceed or not. Continue reading

Cochrane Oral Health Group Concludes Fluoridation May Not Prevent Cavities

dental hygienist King City

The Cochrane Oral Health Group Evaluation of Water Fluoridation concludes: “Fluoridation May Not Prevent Cavities”. In a June 19, 2015 publication by the Cochrane Collaboration, researchers have concluded that: Continue reading