April 22nd is World Earth Day

World Earth Day is April 22. Since 1970, 193 counties have joined the cause. Here are a few simple tips to participate this year.

  1. Turn off lights when you leave a room.
  2. Use reusable coffee mugs and water bottles.
  3. Reduce your meat consumption.
  4. Recycle household plastics, paper and glass.
  5. Stop using single-use plastic bottles, straws and bags.
  6. Use environmentally-friendly, non-toxic cleaning products.
  7. Change your paper bills to online.
  8. Buy local, organic food.
  9. Fix leaky faucets and shower heads.
  10. Take the stairs instead of elevators.

We are also taking initiative in the office to reduce our carbon footprint. Here are a few examples:

  1. We sterilize our instruments in reusable metal containers instead of using single use bags.
  2. We recycle scrap metal.
  3. We have an amalgam separator. This ensures that when we remove old fillings, the amalgam can be disposed of property and not introduced into the environment.
  4. We recycle office paper, cardboard and plastics.

Enjoy your Earth Day (and Easter!).

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Fun Animal Teeth Facts!

We love talking about teeth around here. For something different, we are going to explore some fun facts about ANIMAL teeth. Animal teeth can come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes and positions. A tooth is made up of calcium, phosphorus and other minerals.

Teeth are specific to an animals diet. A Herbivorous animal (like cows) have teeth made to cut and grind up leaves and grasses. Carnivorous animals (lions) have teeth for hunting  and tearing through meat. Humans are omnivorous and our teeth are easily able to eat a wide of foods.

Here are a few fun facts about animal teeth. I bet a few are surprising!

  • Frogs have teeth but toads do not.
  • A snail can have over 25,000 teeth!
  • Giraffes have 32 teeth (the same as humans) but they are all on the bottom jaw.
  • An elephant grinds its molars and then grows new ones. An elephant molar can weigh over 6 pounds.
  • Pigs have 44 teeth, cats have 30, dogs have 42 and armadillos have 104.
  • The Blue Whale is the largest mammal on earth, but eats only tiny shrimp because it has no teeth.
  • The Crocodile Birds is like a little dental hygienist ! It flies into the open mouth of a crocodile and cleans its teeth.
  • When a shark looses a tooth, a new one will grow in its place.
  • at 3 feet long the hippo has the largest canine tooth of any animal.
  • The unicorn-like horn on a narwhal is actually a tooth.
  • Zebras, beavers and rodents teeth never stop growing.
  • You can tell a dolphins age by the number of rings on its teeth – just like a tree.
  • When a rattlesnake closes its mouth, its teeth fold up like a pocketknife to protect its mouth.

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Tooth fairy traditions around the world

In North America we all know of the Tooth Fairy. She collects your tooth from under your pillow and leaves money but around the world some kids have very different plans for fallen teeth.

In Asian cultures, kids throw their discarded teeth while making a wish. If it’s a tooth from the lower jaw, they throw it up on a roof. If it’s a tooth from the upper jaw, they throw it to the ground or under a porch. It is believed that the new tooth will be pulled towards the old one.

In Span, the Tooth Fairy is replaces by a tooth mouse. Known as “Raton Perez” he will exchange a gift for the lost tooth. Many children leave the tooth in a glass of water for Perez to drink. France also has a tooth collecting mouse called “la bonne Petite Souris” but he prefers to leave candy.

South Americans have ditched the pillow and instead leave teeth in slippers for the Tooth Fairy to collect.

Lastly, in Central Asia, kids like to include their family pet. The fallen tooth is put in fat and fed to the dog (we do not support this idea!). The premise is a hope that the new tooth will be a strong as a dogs. No pet? No problem! Just bury it by the a tree for strong roots.

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