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Hygiene Tribune U.S. Edition

Hygiene Tribune U.S. Edition | January 2015C2 FROM PAGE 1 ◊ TEETH, page C1 Tell us what you think! Do you have general comments or criticism you would like to share? Is there a particular topic you would like to see articles about in Hygiene Tribune? Let us know by emailing We look forward to hearing from you! If you would like to make any change to your subscription (name, address or to opt out) please send us an email at c.maragh@dental- and be sure to include which publication you are referring to. Also, please note that subscription changes can take up to six weeks to process. HYGIENE TRIBUNE Publisher & Chairman Torsten Oemus President & Chief Executive Officer Eric Seid Group Editor Kristine Colker Editor in Chief Dental Tribune Dr. David L. Hoexter Editor in Chief Hygiene Tribune Patricia Walsh, RDH Managing Editor Robert Selleck Managing Editor Fred Michmershuizen Managing Editor Sierra Rendon Product/Account Manager Humberto Estrada Marketing Director Anna Kataoka-Wlodarczyk EDUCATION Director Christiane Ferret Accounting Coordinator Nirmala Singh Tribune America, LLC 116 West 23rd Street, Suite 500 New York, NY 10011 Phone (212) 244-7181 Published by Tribune America © 2015 Tribune America, LLC All rights reserved. Tribune America strives to maintain the utmost ac- curacy in its news and clinical reports. If you find a factual error or content that requires clarification, please contact Managing Editor Robert Selleck at Tribune America cannot assume responsibility for the validity of product claims or for typographical errors. The publisher also does not assume respon- sibility for product names or statements made by advertisers. Opinions expressed by authors are their own and may not reflect those of Tribune America. Editorial Board Dr. Joel Berg Dr. L. Stephen Buchanan Dr. Arnaldo Castellucci Dr. Gorden Christensen Dr. Rella Christensen Dr. William Dickerson Hugh Doherty Dr. James Doundoulakis Dr. David Garber Dr. Fay Goldstep Dr. Howard Glazer Dr. Harold Heymann Dr. Karl Leinfelder Dr. Roger Levin Dr. Carl E. Misch Dr. Dan Nathanson Dr. Chester Redhead Dr. Irwin Smigel Dr. Jon Suzuki Dr. Dennis Tartakow Dr. Dan Ward Patricia Walsh, RDH, BS, has been a clinical dental hygienist for more than 20 years. She is a graduate of the Fones School of Dental Hygiene, University of Bridgeport in Connecticut. She has an extensive history in international volunteer work in oral health, including being instrumental in the creation of The Thailand Dental Project, a volunteer program focused on providing educational, preventive and restorative dental care to children in a tsunami-affected region of Thailand. Contact her at starting to feel like my old self again. I ea- gerly awaited climbing Mayan pyramids in Belize with my newfound zest for life. Halfway up a hill to the Xunantunich ru- ins, my guide stopped to pull a leaf off a tree and asked, “Anybody know what this is? Here, taste and see if you can tell me.” It was allspice, but nobody in the group had guessed it. The Mayans used this leaf to cure toothaches. They tucked it between the gum and the tooth to relieve pain. Hmmm. While I wasn’t so sure about the pain part, it certainly may have had some antiseptic qualities to it. On we went to the pyramids. During the excavation, remains had been found entombed midway up, in the front of the structure. What the archeologists were surprised to discover was that the de- ceased were Guatemalan. According to my guide, this was established by analyz- ing the teeth. Dead slaves or prisoners perhaps? The Guatemalans had a diet that consisted of different grains than those commonly used in Belize. The guide spec- ulated that it was the wear and tear on the teeth that distinguished them as Guate- malan. Hmmm again. I had a vague recol- lection of archeologists doing an analysis of a sacrifice victim’s calculus at a Mayan site. It enabled them to determine the origin of the remains based on diet. Part of me wanted to raise my hand and say, “’Scuse me, ’scuse me,” like that annoy- ing apple polisher we all once sat next to in grammar school. But I was on vacation. And I wondered, “Was there no escape from teeth for me this week?” WhenIreturnedhome,Idecidedtowrite about my exciting trip and all of its dental anecdotes. Just as I started, I noticed a lady- bug land on my keyboard. I remembered my grandmother telling me it was good luck to have a ladybug land on you (in spite of the fact that the bug’s house was on fire and her children all gone). I looked up the origin of the children’s rhyme. I found out more than I wanted to know. And what I found made me wince and smile at the same time. Ground up ladybugs were once used to cure toothaches. They were placed inside the cavity. Seems I don’t know ev- erything there is to know about teeth after all. And there is no escaping the wonderful joy of our odd little niche of knowledge. Ad

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