Create Account | Sign In: Author or Forum

 
 
News  |  Journals  |  Conferences  |  Blogs  |  Articles  |  Forums  |  Twitter    
 

 Headlines:

 

Category: Infections | Nursing | Dentistry | Alternative Medicine | News

Back to Health News

Orthodontic Retainers Can Harbor Harmful Microbes

Last Updated: March 18, 2011.

 

Many of these teeth-positioning devices are contaminated with bacteria, fungi, study finds

Share |

Comments: (0)

Tell-a-Friend

 

  Related
 
Many of these teeth-positioning devices are contaminated with bacteria, fungi, study finds.

FRIDAY, March 18 (HealthDay News) -- Orthodontic retainers, removable devices used to keep teeth straight, can develop a build-up of potentially harmful microbes if they aren't properly cleaned, finds a new study.

Researchers at the UCL Eastman Dental Institute checked the retainers of a group of study participants and found that about 67 percent had a type of yeast called Candida that can cause fungal infections, while 50 percent had Staphylococcus bacteria, including methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).

Candida and Staphylococcus rarely cause problems in healthy people but can pose a serious threat to people with weakened immune systems, noted study author Jonathan Pratten and colleagues.

Further investigation revealed that the bacteria on retainers live in biofilms, which are communities of bacteria living together in a layer of slime. These biofilms can be difficult to remove and tend to be highly resistant to antimicrobial agents.

The findings, published online March 14 in the journal Letters in Applied Microbiology, suggest the need for improved cleaning products for orthodontic retainers.

The researchers said anyone handling a retainer should wash their hands before and after use. Careful tooth brushing and the use of mouthwash may also help keep the retainer clean.

"With the growing awareness the public has of hospital-acquired infections, it is important to be aware of other potential 'hidden reservoirs' of harmful bacteria which could be introduced to environments where we know they can cause problems," Pratten stated in a journal news release.

More information

The Nemours Foundation has more about staph infections.

SOURCE: Letters in Applied Microbiology, news release, March 15, 2011

Copyright © 2011 HealthDay. All rights reserved.


Previous: Sleep Disorder May Spur Men to Head to Bathroom at Night Next: Smoke-Free Environments Linked to Less Breast Cancer

Reader comments on this article are listed below. Review our comments policy.


Submit your opinion:

Name:

Email:

Location:

URL:

Remember my personal information

Notify me of follow-up comments?

advertisement.gif (61x7 -- 0 bytes)
 

Are you a Doctor, Pharmacist, PA or a Nurse?

Join the Doctors Lounge online medical community

  • Editorial activities: Publish, peer review, edit online articles.

  • Ask a Doctor Teams: Respond to patient questions and discuss challenging presentations with other members.

Doctors Lounge Membership Application

 
     

 advertisement.gif (61x7 -- 0 bytes)

 

 

Useful Sites
MediLexicon
  Tools & Services: Follow DoctorsLounge on Twitter Follow us on Twitter | RSS News | Newsletter | Contact us
Copyright © 2001-2014
Doctors Lounge.
All rights reserved.

Medical Reference:
Diseases | Symptoms
Drugs | Labs | Procedures
Software | Tutorials

Advertising
Links | Humor
Forum Archive
CME | Conferences

Privacy Statement
Terms & Conditions
Editorial Board
About us | Email

This website is certified by Health On the Net Foundation. Click to verify. This site complies with the HONcode standard for trustworthy health information:
verify here.