Yes, there’s an app for brushing your teeth!
There is a new toothbrush on the market, which struck the technologically inclined among us, as kind of nifty and cool, albeit a little pricey. If you’ve always wondered how long your children brush (because as we all know, they never brush long enough), here is a 21st century way of doing so.
The Beambrush communicates with a synced iphone, ipad or even itouch (not android enabled phones yet) and allows the parent or the dentist to monitor and keep track of your child’s brushing time. It will beam data to your device of choice, and allow you to check on a daily or weekly basis, how often and for how long your child is brushing. A great tool for busy parents!
Check them out at http://beamtoothbrush.com/
We ourselves haven’t tried it but are planning on testing it out on our own children soon. We’ll post a review as soon as we get our hands on the Beambrush
Just the other day, I was asked by a parent if a whole house water filter that he had installed recently was filtering out fluoride. A good question but before I provide an answer, a little background is in order.
We are great believers in the safety of our municipal water supply system (the MWRA, or Massachusetts Water Resource Authority) whose mandate is to ensure a high quality, clean and safe water supply for all of the towns it sources. The vigorous testing for over a hundred contaminants is impressive especially when one considers that our bottled water oftentimes comes from unknown sources with vague testing requirements.
One of the more important supplements that is added to our water supply is fluoride. The addition of fluoride to our drinking supply has been called by the Centers For Disease Control as “One of the Top Ten Great Public Health Achievements in the 20th Century”, and has been a major reason for why fewer adults and children are getting cavities today.
The CDC and the MWRA are constantly monitoring and adjusting the optimal amount of fluoride added to the water supply. Part of this quality control is to ensure that those most at risk of developing dental caries (the very young, and the very not so young) are getting the proper amount of fluoride in their drinking water to prevent this disease.
So with that as some background, let’s talk about water filters. The vast majority of filters used by most households do NOT filter out fluoride. Brita filters, pur filters, faucet water filters, counter top filters, basic under sink filters and even some whole house filters do not remove fluoride. However, it is best that you check with either us or the manufacturer to determine fluoride is removed. On a separate note, boiling water does not remove fluoride either.
Reverse Osmosis Filters, De-Ionization filters (need to have an ion exchange resin), activated alumina defluoridation and distillation filters DO remove Fluoride. The level of effectiveness of removal depends on the size of the filter, the types of filters used, and the technology of the filter. Some manufacturers promise close to a 100% removal of fluoride. These methods of filtration are typically expensive, and are not installed in most households.
If you do have a filter that removes fluoride, your child may possibly need some systemic fluoride supplementation in the form of tablets or liquids. Be sure to ask your pediatrician or dentist.