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Arestin study: Minocycline HCl microspheres reduce red-complex bacteria in periodontal disease therapy

Have you heard about how Arestin (minocycline HCl) microspheres can be used in the treatment of periodontitis? This revolutionary approach to treating periodontal disease as adjunct to SRP has a wealth of clinical information to support it. This study published in the Journal of Periodontology is just one example of Arestin’s clinical success. Check out a summary of the study with the infographic below!


BioGaia study: Clinical and microbiological effects of Lactobacillus reuteri probiotics in the treatment of chronic periodontitis

Did you know that BioGaia Prodentis is the world’s most studied probiotic for oral health? With over 20 published studies regarding the product’s active ingredient, Lactobacillus reuteri Prodentis, it is clear that BioGaia Prodentis certainly has the clinical evidence to back it up! Among the several studies is this one published in the Journal of Clinical Peridontology that explores the effects of Lactobacillus reuteri probiotics in the treatment of chronic periodontitis. Check out a summary of the study with the infographic below!


OPTIM 33TB wipes: What makes a disinfectant stand out?

As a dental assistant of many years, I have been exposed to different protocol for cleaning and disinfection. I have never questioned anyone’s process until I did some deep research through HANSAmed’s educational portals on different types of disinfectants. I learned many things about disinfectants, but one thing that really stood out to me was that they are not all the same. With so many cleaning and disinfecting products on the market, HANSAmed feels its part of our due diligence to explain why OPTIM is such a quality and premium product.

Let’s start with the solution its self. According to SciCan, OPTIM has “The perfect balance. No compromise between safety and efficacy.” OPTIM 33TB are different from those on the market because of the active ingredient: 0.5% hydrogen peroxide, which leaves no active residue after wiping and remains wet for the said contact time of just one minute. Try it yourself. Take an OPTIM 33TB wipe and a competitor wipe and swipe two separate parts of the operatory counter top and time it. OPTIM will remain wet for at least 1 minute and will even last up to 3 minutes. Competitors “claim” do the same, but that is not always the case.

OPTIM is a highly effective cleaner1. It is a one-step solution. OPTIM removes organic debris while disinfecting at the same time, therefore, it is considered a “one step cleaner and disinfectant”. Most competitors are two step solutions. (Cleaner and disinfectant in two separate steps – and don’t forget about the contact time in between steps). This means you will need to use twice the number of wipes (which is not cost effective) and twice the amount of time (which is also not time effective). One wipe is used to clean organic debris then another wipe to disinfect the area.  Another great fact about the OPTIM wipes, they cover twice as much area compared to leading competitors.

OPTIM wipes are a known as a broad-spectrum disinfection. This means it can kill off many different types of germs, viruses and bacteria in a timely fashion. OPTIM has a fungicidal claim of 3 minutes. People tend to focus on the 3-minute fungicidal claim but let’s be realistic – in dentistry, how often do we treat fungus? We are more interested in cleaning and disinfecting mycobacteria, non-enveloped viruses and enveloped viruses such as TB, polio, hepatitis A & B and HIV, to name a few. Let’s reconsider and focus on what is being destroyed under the one minute claim.

Now, let’s talk about the safety of the product. How would you like to work with a product that has NO warning signs, NO toxicity, NO skin irritation, NO eye irritation or respiratory irritation? Remember, as dental professionals, we are using cleaning and disinfecting wipes all day long– between every patient we see in every single operatory of the clinic.  This means you will be inhaling the fumes the disinfectants lead off which may be harmful to you, the patient and the environment. With OPTIM 33TB, consider yourself safe. OPTIM has no GHS hazard pictograms, no signal words or statements on the bottle nor on the SDS. OPTIM is also compatible with a wide range of materials within the dental operatory.

When purchasing a disinfectant, please consider the following questions:

  • Is it a 1-step or a 2-step cleaner disinfectant?
  • What is the contact time?
  • Which bacteria/viruses are being killed?
  • Is it safe for me and those around me?
  • Is it time and cost effective?
  • Does it have scientific clams proving its efficiency?
Click to open
  1. John Molinari, PhD. “OPTIM 33TB Cleaning Study”, Ann Arbor: Dental Advisor, 2010.

Systemic links between periodontal health and overall health: The importance of patient education in the dental field

47.2% of adults aged 30 years and older have some form of periodontal disease. Periodontal Disease increases with age, 70.1% of adults 65 years and older have periodontal disease.1

Educating our patients on oral health and the negative effect of periodontal disease will help encourage overall oral health. In this, we mean ensuring patients understand what is really going on in their mouth and if left untreated, the risk to the rest of the body. Studies are showing that there is a systemic link between periodontal disease and cardiovascular disease, diabetes and preterm low weight babies.  Periodontal disease also leads to gum loss, bone loss and eventually tooth loss. By having your patient acknowledge this bacterial infection, they will be more open to pre-surgical treatment options, such as Arestin.

In 2014, OraPharma (manufacturer of Arestin) conducted a survey based on 300 adult patients who required a routine dental appointment within the preceding 9 months, and the findings focused on those who had received a new diagnosis (other than caries) during that visit. The objective of this survey was to understand the impact of consistent communication between dental professionals and patients and the understanding of their new diagnoses and acceptance of treatment recommendations.The key message is to help doctors in increasing acceptance of exact treatment recommendations in practice

If the patient receives a new diagnosis, the professional should consider using consistent language and terminology in delivering that diagnosis. Ensure that all dental staff members understand the treatment plan recommended for the patient’s newly diagnosed issue, so there’s additional consistency in continuing communications.

Finally, it is important continue to educate patients about periodontal disease and the fact that it is a chronic, active infection. Allow enough time after the examination for patients to engage in open dialogue with dental staff members.

To download the entire study, click here:

Arestin HANSAmed


Eke PI, Dye B, Wei L, Thornton-Evans G, Genco R. Prevalence of Periodontitis in Adults in the United States: 2009 and 2010. J Dent Res. Published online 30 August 2012:1–7.

Data on file. OraPharma, Inc. Market research: interactions with dental professionals. Prepared by Lightspeed, LLC. May 2014.

Data on file. OraPharma, Inc. Market research: trends among consumers with periodontal disease. Prepared by Lightspeed, LLC. April 2013.


It’s National Lighthouse Day! Explore how LIGHTHOUSE kits can help overcome a medical emergency

What is the best way to successfully handle a medical emergency in the dental office? Some might say the answer is to act fast when the taxing situation arises. Some might say the solution is to work diligently when a patient is in distress. What’s our answer? First and foremost, we believe the best way to swiftly handle a medical emergency in the dental office is to be prepared.

An article written by Daniel A. Haas (DDS, PhD) and published in The Journal of the American Dental Association described that “a medical emergency can occur in any dental office, and managing it successfully requires preparation.”1 We could not agree more. With August 7th being National Lighthouse Day, we thought we would shed some light on the importance of being prepared with LIGHTHOUSE medical emergency kits.

The occurrence of medical emergencies in the dental clinic, although infrequent, are not rare. A survey conducted by Fast et al. involving 4000 dentists reported that, on average, a dentist will experience 7.5 medical emergencies during a span of 10 years.2 Tackling the topic of medical emergencies can seem daunting, but luckily, there are many actions that can be taken to ensure your clinic is prepared.

In addition to proper education and training, the Royal College of Dental Surgeons of Ontario (RCDSO) outlines that each clinic is to include six up-to-date emergency drugs. Those drugs being: oxygen, aspirin, nitroglycerin, salbutamol, epinephrine and diphenhydramine. Additionally, these medications must be housed in a labeled and organized manner, making them easily recognizable and ready to use at all times.3

Conveniently, a LIGHTHOUSE medical emergency kit serves as your one-stop-shop for handling a medical emergency. Not only do these kits include the necessary medications and tools to help save a life, but they are also impeccably organized and labeled for quick and easy use. Medical emergencies tend to happen when we least expect them to, and LIGHTHOUSE kits put the minds of both the dental professional and the patient to at ease.  After all, when it comes to patient safety, you can never be too prepared.


  1. Haas, D. A. (2010). Preparing dental office staff members for emergencies: developing a basic action plan. Journal of the American Dental Association, 141(1), 8-13. doi: 10.14219.
  2. Fast, T. B., Martin, M. D., & Ellis, T. M. (1986). Emergency preparedness: a survey of dental practitioners. Journal of the American Dental Association, 112(4), 499-501. doi: 10.14219.
  3. Royal College of Dental Surgeons of Ontario. Information on Medical Emergencies. Retrieved from

Happy National Ice Cream Month! How can you defend against tooth decay that sugar can cause?

Chances are, you will rarely find someone who will turn down a cold ice cream cone; especially during a hot month like July. As National Ice Cream Month wraps up, I’m sure all of you sweet-treat fanatics are wondering: what is all that sugar doing to my teeth? As it turns out, satisfying your sweet tooth with a high sugar intake comes with its risks.

In fact, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), dietary sugar intake is the single most detrimental factor associated with tooth decay. The problem linked to dental caries is not limited to a few cavities here and there. As a matter of fact, dental caries is the most prevalent noncommunicable (chronic) disease the world is faced with. On a case-to-case basis, individuals suffering from extreme tooth decay can face intense pain and complications on a daily basis. Additionally, attempting to solve the problem of dental caries on an international scale can put overwhelming strain on healthcare budgets across the globe.1 As you can see, an epidemic like this can put stress on both individual cases and the population as a whole.

The evidence is clear: sugar is most definitely not beneficial for your pearly whites. But the question still remains, how exactly is sugar wreaking havoc on your teeth? An important piece to note is that sugar itself is not the only attacker at fault. The other enemy at play here is, you guessed it, harmful bacteria. These groups of bacteria seem to have a sweet tooth of their own – allow me to explain.

When you consume sugar, say in ice cream for example, bacteria begin to feed on the free sugars left behind. In doing so, plaque is formed on your teeth. If the plaque is left occupying the tooth surface for too long, the pH of the oral cavity begins to plummet. As the mouth becomes increasingly acidic, this eats away at your teeth, ultimately leading to cavities and tooth decay if not treated.2

This, of course, is not to say that all bacteria that can inhabit your mouth are destructive. In reality, there are good bacteria that can exist in the mouth that can play a role in actually defending against tooth decay. Without further ado, allow me to introduce the probiotic Lactobacillus reuteri. This beneficial bacterium is an all-star when it comes to promoting good oral health, including defense against tooth decay, with the scientific evidence to back it up.

A study published in the journal entitled Caries Research aimed to analyze the effect on caries in primary teeth after Lactobacillus reuteri supplementation. The study involved the participation of pregnant mothers during their final month of gestation and their children up until their first birthday. The group of 113 children were divided into a probiotic group involving 60 children and a placebo control group involving 53 children. These children were later assessed at 9 years of age to evaluate their oral health state. Interestingly, results showed that 82% of the children in the probiotic group were caries-free, while only 58% of the children in the placebo group were caries-free. This was despite no significant differences in oral hygiene habits and diet.3

I’m sure sugar enthusiasts will see these results as great news. A quick, easy and safe way to defend against tooth decay – yes please, hand it over! Luckily for those with a sweet tooth, BioGaia Prodentis harnessed the probiotic bacterium Lactobacillus reuteri into one, mint-flavoured lozenge. With these lozenges, it’s never easier to upgrade your oral health game. Who said you can’t have your ice cream and eat it too?


  1. Guideline: Sugars intake for adults and children. Geneva: World Health Organization; 2015.
  2. Tan, V. (2017). How sugar causes cavities and destroys your teeth.
  3. Stensson, M., Koch, G., Coric, S., Abrahamsson, T. R., Jenmalam, M. C., Birkhed, D., & Wendt, L. K. (2014). Oral administration of Lactobacillus reuteri during the first year of life reduces caries prevalent in the primary dentition at 9 years of age. Caries Research, 48(2), 111-117. doi: 10.1159/000354412

Weighing pain control options: what makes a local anesthetic stand out?

Choosing a local anesthetic is not always simple. Many factors will influence the choice of pain control such as procedure type and patient history, to name a few. Most clinicians will usually favour around 1 or 2 local anesthetic they are comfortable with.  It is common for a clinician have 1-2 local anesthetics onsite with a vasoconstrictor and one type of anesthetic without vasoconstrictor, for patients with heart conditions.  The local anesthetic choice is typically dependent on various aspects, including what was used while studying in university, what has been used in previous practices or what their colleagues are currently using. In a study on local anesthetics used by dentists in Ontario, it was concluded that lidocaine 1:100,000 and articaine 1:200,000 are most commonly used.1

HANSAmed Limited was the first company to distribute the original articaine, Ultracaine, in Canada. Because of this, we pride ourselves. With Ultracaine, dentists are seeing exactly what is expected: predictability, safety, and efficacy.

With indications of infiltration anesthesia and nerve block anesthesia, Ultracaine has been clinically proven to be effective. Ultracaine has a high lipid solubility which allows the anesthetic to diffuse through tissue better and faster than any other anesthetic drug on the market.

Ultracaine D-S and D-S Forte have both a high plasma protein binding rate in addition to a high lipid solubility. The rapid breakdown of articaine to the inactive metabolite articanic acid is related to a very low systemic toxicity and consequently to the possibility of repeated injections.2

With so many pain control options available in the field of dentistry, it can be daunting to begin the process of choosing the right one. Although, with Ultracaine, the benefits listed above are evident. With choosing Ultracaine, you can be rest assured that your local anesthetic predictable, safe and efficacious.


  1. Gaffen, A. S., & Haas, D. A. (2009). Survey of local anesthetic use by Ontario dentists. Journal of Canadian Dental Association, 75(9), 649.
  2. Oertel, R., Rahn, R., & Kirch, W. (1997). Clinical pharmacokinetics of articaine. Clinical Pharmacokinetics, 33(6), 417-425. doi: 10.2165/00003088-1997-33060-00002.

“A defibrillator onsite? No thanks, EMS is waiting to help”: AEDs and the importance of being prepared

What does patient safety mean to you? Is a small investment worth saving a patient’s life? Or maybe the life of a staff member, or maybe even your own life? An interesting point was brought to my attention today during a Brain Food Seminar from a dentist who doesn’t believe in having an automated external defibrillator onsite due to clinic location being in close proximity to a hospital.  “We don’t need an AED, the hospital is right across the street”.

This is one of my favourite and most frequent comments I hear in the industry. People tend to forget that cardiac arrest can occur at any age, at any time, to people of all fitness levels, and without warning. We only have minutes to help before death can occur.

Although your clinic may be close to a health care facility or even across the street from emergency responders, the emergency dispatch steps work the same way regardless of your location.  Although the clinic may be located by a hospital or by an EMS station, we need to be able to take on the challenge of SCA should emergency responders be busy elsewhere.  We also need to take into consideration traffic or road congestion. With such a high-risk emergency like sudden cardiac arrest, we do not want to take the risk of waiting on immediate attention from an outside party. For the health of our dental community and patients, I encourage all clinics to be equipped with an easy to use defibrillator because of course; it’s easier to be over prepared than under prepared.

Optim Wipes HANSAmed

How clean is clean? Check out this test.

HANSAmed Limited conducted a cleaning test and our findings are quite surprising. As it turns out, disinfectants are not all the same. All products have different specifications such as contact times, bacterial targets and active ingredients. This information is usually in the fine print which often accidently gets missed. There is no one to blame on this matter as it is a common human error to skim on the fine print. So, what we have done at HANSAmed, is an experiment testing cleaning efficacy.  Using OPTIM wipes, CaviWipes, TB Minute Man, Sani-Cloth PLUS and Ultra Swipes we compared its ability to clean contaminated tiles. Using one wipe per tile, one hema-stick per tile, a 2-3-minute contact time and saline to hydrate we are able to detect each products ability to remove organic debris.

The results may or may not surprise you too. The test confirms that clean is not relative.

Watch the video to find out.

Ensuring patient comfort: Choosing the right local anesthetic

The idea of a successful dental procedure differs based on the opinion of the dentist and the opinion of the patient. To the dental clinician, a successful procedure could be: restoring a tooth, correct placement of an implant, or finally seeing pocket depth reduction in an uncontrollable 8mm infected periodontal pocket. To the patient, all of these factors matter as well. However, above all, a painless procedure is one major detail that a patient will base the procedures’ success off of. If the patients pain control is not taken into consideration throughout the entire procedure, they may reconsider going through this type of treatment again, or even worse, they may consider receiving dental treatment elsewhere.

Among all phobias, dental phobia is one of the most common. One (according to the patient’s standards) unsuccessful/painful procedure might cause mental trauma and have them never wanting to visit a clinic again. A story from some else’s bad experience may also discourage them from coming to the dental clinic.

The use of local anesthesia is closely tied with unpleasant experiences related to dental treatment and dental anxiety. Most fear has to do with dental injections:

  • General fear of dental injections
  • Pain of injection and of bodily injury from injection
  • Fear related to local anesthetic (such as side effects, inadequate anesthesia, etc.)

It is important to select a local anesthetic drug that will achieve the desired anesthetic effect as quickly and effectively as possible to complete the treatment while having pain controlled.

Ultracaine offers the advantages of not only a fast onset and profound action, but also the added benefit of two different vasoconstrictor concentrations. The 1:200,000 solution offers pulpal anesthesia in the range of 45-60 minutes, while the 1:100, 000 solution will extend further to 60-75 minutes. This is a significant advantage over the use of lidocaine HCl solutions, since they only offer pulpal anesthesia in the range of 60 minutes. By using a profound anesthetic, such as 4% Ultracaine, you will reduce the amount of discomfort your patient feels, without having to reinject due to the lasting effect making it a successful procedure for both the dentist and the patient.

Ultracaine HANSAmed