We are proud to announce that our parent company Ivodent, has partnered with Liechtenstein-based Ivoclar Vivadent, leading manufacturers of innovative dental applications, to open a high-tech dental training and continuing education centre.
Based in Cape Town, this International Centre for Dental Education (ICDE), the first in Southern Africa, will draw dentists, dental technologists, therapists and oral hygienists to its workshop, which is equipped with the very latest in state-of-the-art training equipment.
“It is vital to keep the profession well informed,” says Ian Hockly, Technical Advisor, Ivodent, which takes on the responsibility and management of the centre, the culmination of a long collaboration between Ivodent and Ivoclar Vivadent.
“We are moving into an era of dentistry only dreamt about many years ago. Many procedures can now be done in a lab using Cadcam, and there are developments such as three-D printing and the potential of robotics.
“But advances in technologies and materials can be confusing and a facility such as this will help the profession stay abreast with developments as they happen. Continuing education is essential to place new products in the market and have the correct protocols to achieve desired predictable results,” says Hockly.
“Continuing education is essential to keep SA dental professionals up to date to serve the needs of their patients at the highest level. The centre opens exciting educational opportunities for the dental community of SA and neighbouring countries.”
For details on the Ivodent International Centre for Dental Education view www.ivodentonline.co.za.
Mouth ulcers are usually a small problem that can be a big pain, making eating, drinking or even talking uncomfortable.
About three-quarters of people will experience mouth ulcers at some point. They are often caused by a minor injury (e.g. biting the cheek accidentally) or can be recurring ‘aphthous’ ulcers, which often first appear in childhood and adolescence. Allergies can trigger mouth ulcers and babies and young children often develop them as a result of common viruses including Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease, the Coksackie Virus and Herpes Simplex (Herpetic Gingivostomatitis).
Our oral hygiene expert Dirna Grobbelaar says that whilst ulcers can be uncomfortable, they should not be a cause for too much concern. “Mouth ulcers are not contagious and usually clear up by themselves in a few days.”
She does, however, warn against neglecting one’s oral care routine. “Mouth ulcers expose sensitive nerve endings which can make cleaning your mouth uncomfortable. However, maintaining good oral hygiene at this time can promote quicker healing and will keep your teeth and gums healthy.
“After eating and before going to bed, rinse with an antibacterial mouthwash such as GUM Paroex to help prevent the ulcer becoming infected. Continue to brush your teeth correctly twice a day, using a soft-bristled or child’s toothbrush if necessary. If your toothpaste stings try a non-foaming toothpaste like GUM Paroex Gel or all-natural Olgani Herbal Toothpaste.
“Avoid acidic, spicy or salty foods and drinks, which may burn. Drinking with a straw may help, but be careful that hot drinks do not burn the throat.”
There are various products available at pharmacies to relieve the pain of mouth ulcers. Grobbelaar recommends Aloclair gel or spray. “Aloclair forms a barrier over the sensitive nerve endings to give immediate pain relief. The protective coating helps reduce irritation and prevent food or bacteria infecting the ulcer. This allows the ulcer to heal faster. The spray and gel are easy to apply and contain soothing Aloe Vera.”
Most mouth ulcers will last up to 10 days before clearing up naturally. If an ulcer does not heal within two to three weeks consult your doctor or dentist – oral cancer rates are on the rise globally and predicted to treble in the next generation. An ulcer can be an early indicator and it is important to rule this out.
Winter weather, colds and ‘flu can play havoc with your skin. To help avoid the ‘Rudolph’ red nose look here’s handy advice from Dirna Grobbelaar on caring for the lips, nose and skin in-between.
Constant nose blowing and cold weather can result in the delicate skin between the nose and lips becoming dry and irritated. Small cracks appear, which are exacerbated each time you wipe the nose. The area becomes chapped, red and sore.
If you are unlucky enough to catch a cold, take special care right from
the start. Keep your skin well-moisturised and apply Letibalm nose and lip repair balm regularly. It is specially formulated to protect and help heal this area. Use only extra-soft tissues containing Aloe vera, calendula or vitamin E.
Never use rough kitchen towel or serviettes. Rather than rubbing or wiping repeatedly, just gently blot the nose. A humidifier in the room adds moisture to the air and can help prevent skin drying out. Using a nasal spray or saline solution can help hydrate the nasal passages.
You can also help hydrate and boost the skin from the inside; eat a nutritious diet containing lots of fresh fruit, vegetables and healthy fats; drink plenty of water, rooibos or herbal teas; warm drinks are soothing and can help relieve congestion; extra fluids can also help to thin mucus, relieving a stuffy nose.
Instead of long, hot showers which can dry out the skin, rather use cool or lukewarm water. Use a gentle cleanser and avoid harsh soaps or facial scrubs. And always moisturize after a bath or shower, adding a few drops of extra oil to your cream or lotion.
Chapped skin is more susceptible to infection, so make sure you wash your hands before applying moisturizer. It will also help prevent the spread of germs.
Eight skincare tips to protect the nose and lips
- Keep the skin well-moisturised.
- Use super-soft tissues with Aloe vera or calendula.
- Gently blot the nose rather than rubbing or wiping.
- Apply Letibalm nose and lip repair balm to protect, moisturize and help heal the skin.
- Wash with cool or lukewarm water, avoiding harsh soaps or exfoliators.
- Use a saline spray to keep nasal passages moist.
- Use a humidifier to add moisture to the air.
- Drink plenty of water or herbal teas.
Unlike the Easter bunny, whose teeth grow continually, our adult teeth are permanent and stop growing once they have emerged from the gums. Tooth decay is the world’s most common health condition, so taking proper care is essential if you wish to keep them. Here’s expert advice on how to maintain healthy teeth, even when there are so many high-sugar Easter treats on offer.
“Dental decay occurs when bacteria in the mouth, known as plaque, breaks down food releasing acid which erodes the teeth,” says Dirna Grobbelaar, Ivohealth’s oral hygiene advisor. “If plaque is not removed it will cause tooth decay and gum disease.”
The most effective way to remove plaque is to simply clean the teeth, brushing correctly at least twice a day. Ideally use a soft-bristled brush, which won’t damage the gums, and thoroughly clean all three tooth surfaces (top, front and back). To help you brush for the full two minutes (as recommended by dentists), use a timer, an app or a brush with a built-in timer, like the Philips Sonicare powerbrush.
Daily cleaning in-between is essential and should start once the teeth begin to touch, usually from around age two. Floss is not everyone’s first choice, but these days there are plenty of options; Sunstar GUM has a huge range of interdental tools, including Soft-Picks (high-tech toothpicks), interdental brushes and floss handles. Or look an irrigator that directs jets of water between the teeth. The Panasonic Oral Irrigator is good, especially for people with implants or orthodontic braces.
Eat a nutritious, well-balanced diet. On the whole, it’s best to avoid sugary foods and drinks. When you do occasionally indulge, don’t brush immediately, as the sugar will have temporarily softened your tooth’s enamel. Rather rinse with water or an alcohol-free mouthwash, like Dentyl Active, immediately after. Wait an hour or so before brushing.
How often you eat is another factor. From a dental perspective, a brief fluctuation in pH balance is better than a continual bombardment. Regular meals or a single choc-fest is actually better for your teeth than eating small snacks and treats throughout the day.
Last, but not least, a professional clean with the oral hygienist every six months and a check-up with the dentist each year will ensure any problems are picked up before they become serious.
For more expert advice speak to your dentist or oral hygienist.
Operation Smile is an international medical charity whose global network of thousands of credentialed medical volunteers from around all over the world is dedicated to helping improve the health and lives of children from more than 60 countries. Since its founding in 1982, Operation Smile has provided more than 240,000 free surgical procedures for children and young adults born with cleft lip, cleft palate and other facial deformities. To build long-term sufficiency in resource-poor environments, Operation Smile trains doctors and local medical professionals in its partner countries so that they are empowered to treat their local communities and help others around the world. Operation Smile also donates medical equipment and supplies and provides year-round medical treatment through its worldwide centres.
OPERATION SMILE SOUTH AFRICA
Operation Smile expanded its reach to South Africa in 2006. Since inception, Operation Smile South Africa (OSSA) has conducted nearly 50 missions across Africa and currently serves as the regional hub for Central and Southern Africa. Their work includes multiple missions to the DRC, Ghana, Madagascar, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Swaziland. While they continue to expand their footprint they can look back on over 6, 000 lives changed and look forward to changing untold more in the future.
Supporting Operation Smile South Africa
Ivohealth and Sunstar GUM are proud to support Operation Smile South Africa. In 2014 they sponsored dentist Dr Jean van Lierop and his Team AmaGumGum in the Cipla Miles for Smiles Mad Run. This February they are donating a Sunstar GUM toothbrush on behalf of every person that completes the #FreshBreathQuest.
Every 3 minutes, a child is born with a cleft lip and/or cleft palate.
A baby born with a cleft has twice the odds of dying before celebrating their first birthday.
One in every 1000 children globally is born with a cleft lip and/or cleft palate.
For more information visit their website http://southafrica.operationsmile.org/
Or find them on Facebook.
How fresh is your oral care knowledge? Take Sunstar GUM’s #FreshBreathQuest this February to find out.
There are awesome prizes worth over R15, 000 up for grabs! For every person that completes the quest, Sunstar GUM will donate a toothbrush to Operation Smile South Africa.
The main prize, valued at R10, 000, includes a Tsogo Sun family mini-break (worth up R7, 000) and an oral care kit worth over R3, 000, containing a Philips Sonicare powerbrush, a rechargeable Panasonic Oral Irrigator and Sunstar GUM products.
There are also 10 Sunstar GUM fresh breath kits to win (worth R539 each), packed with innovative Sunstar GUM oral care products for fresh breath and a healthy smile.
To enter, go to www.ivohealth.co.za/freshbreathquest before 28 February 2017.
Terms and conditions apply.
If you love natural products and care about what you put in – and onto – your body, opt for natural oral care that will effectively clean your mouth and nourish your body.
Olgani Naturals is a brand that cares about the health of the entire body and offers a completely natural oral health care option to protect and care for your teeth and gums. Olgani Naturals’ philosophy and core belief lies in proper oral and bodily care; because the body absorbs what we put onto and into it. The absorption properties of the oral mucosa are approximately two to three times higher than that of the epidermis, making the use of safe and healthy oral care products, critical. All Olgani toothpastes and mouth washes are made from specially selected medicinal plants and are completely edible – they’re as good for your body as they are for your pearly whites.
Here’s some good news for chocolate lovers – chocolate can actually be good for your teeth! Studies* have shown that chocolate may be more effective than fluoride in fighting tooth decay. “Real chocolate, made from cacao, contains compounds that help harden tooth enamel and has anti-bacterial properties that help fight plaque,” says Dirna Grobbelaar, Ivohealth’s oral hygiene expert. “It also has well-documented anti-inflammatory properties which can help prevent gum disease.”
Although bad breath is rarely the sign of a serious illness, it can cripple self-confidence, romance, relationships; even career prospects. No one wants to get close to someone with stinky breath, however much you love or value them. However, they are not always easy to avoid – up to 90% of people experience halitosis at some point and about one in four have a chronic problem.
Dirna Grobbelaar, Ivohealth’s oral hygiene advisor, qualified as an oral hygienist at the University of Stellenbosch in 1999. She has a special interest in beauty, and is up to date with all the latest techniques and information on teeth whitening. In addition to her consulting work with Ivohealth she continues to practice part-time at Intercare in Durbanville, keeping her up to date with latest trends, information and patient concerns. As the mother of twin boys and a daughter, Dirna has personal and professional experience in helping children maintain a healthy mouth and develop good oral care habits for life.