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Office of Oral Health Newsletter


In This Issue
Community Spotlights
Upcoming Events and Trainings
What to Expect at Your Dental Appointment Brochures
We are excited to bring you 3 new brochures that are intented to serve as a guide for parents, adults, and elders on how to get ready for a dental visit, what general procedures/ interventions are to be expected, and suggestions on what to ask the dental provider! Available in both English and Spanish!
Oral Health Resource Brochure
Check out our Oral Health Resource Brochure, now available in the following languages: 



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November/ December 2011


Dear Friends,


Welcome to the 8th edition of the BPHC Office of OralTurkey Health newsletter! 

November is National Diabetes Month and this issue of the newsletter is focused around oral health and diabetes resources and outreach events. Also, in recognition of December 1st National World AIDS Day, this issue highlights HIV/AIDS resources and outreach events.


If your program or organization has any updates or event information you would like to share, please email our office at oralhealth@bphc.org.

Outreach Updates 


Amory Street Housing Development Senior Dental and Eye Screening 


On October 6, 2011, the Senior Oral Health Project collaborated with the New England Eye Institute for the second time to bring not only free dental screenings, dental hygiene education, dental appointment referrals, and blood pressure screenings to low-income seniors residing at the Amory Street Boston Housing Authority (BHA) development but to also offer free eye examinations, eye care, and glasses (if not covered by other insurance). Over 20 Amory Street residents 60 years old and over were screened and made referrals for further treatment. A special thank you to Jennifer Guzman, Amory Street Resident Services Coordinator, for making this day such a success! 


 Outreach photo

Members of Fenway Community Health Center Dental Team screening Amory residents.  


Ethos Monthly Senior Lunch Café


On October 18, 2011, the Ethos Monthly Senior Lunch Café hosted the Office of Oral Health as we chatted with a large group of seniors about the importance of maintaining good oral health at an older age. To name a few, the seniors learned more about risk factors for oral cancer, the importance of receiving an oral cancer exam at regular dental visits, and proper denture care. Lastly, the seniors played our Oral Health Roulette where they answered oral health trivia and tried to guess which smile belonged to which animal! Thank you to Ethos for being such great hosts!


Seniors engaged in the Oral Health Presentation 

Oral Health Module at the BPHC Community Health Education Center


On October 24, 2011, the Office of Oral Health had the wonderful opportunity to speak to a group of community outreach workers at the Boston Public Health Commission Community Health Education Center (CHEC). The group participated in many hands-on activities that reinforced concepts discussed in the presentation, including the link between oral health and systemic & psychosocial effects, social determinants of health, and ways that outreach workers can help advocate for the restoration of MassHealth adult dental cuts. We look forward to returning to CHEC for our continuing oral health module in the winter and spring!



Community Outreach workers playing celebratory smiles to emphasize that your smile is part of your identity.

Community Spotlight

BPHC HIV Dental Program Deals With MassHealth Cuts

Written by the Boston Public Health Commission HIV Dental Ombudsperson Program (HIV DOP)


As what other programs are experiencing, such as Community Health Center dental programs, we are also impacted by the adult dental MassHealth cuts.  65% of our patients are eligible for the program, but the majority of services needed are no longer covered.  This has caused a financial strain for us and limits the number of clients we can continue to serve.  In May of 2011 we put a temporary hold on new enrollments, this is the first ever in the 20 year history of the program and this was necessary to continue to provide comprehensive care to the 2000 active clients.  Only if there are changes to MassHealth or increases in other funding sources will we be able to consider opening enrollment.   Individuals looking for care are referred to other Ryan White Part F programs.  We encourage all consumers and advocates to contact their state legislators and ask for them to support the full restoration of the MassHealth adult dental program.


Save the Date

March 30, 2012-  28th Annual Oral Health & HIV Symposium at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Newton, MA. This symposium is sponsored by NEAETC annually with assistance from the HIV Dental Program.  Some of the topics include an update on infection control, the use of implants in HIV(+) patients, a review of oral manifestations, linkages to medical care, and more.


For more information on the BPHC HIV Dental Ombudsperson Program, please visit our website. Also, click here for a comprehensive overview of the CDC's infection control guidelines to help health professionals practice safely, co-authored by Helene Bednarsh, Director of the BPHC HIV DOP, and Kathy Eklund, Director of Occupational Health and Safety at the Forsyth Institute.

Did You Know?

Diabetes affects the health of your entire body, but did you know that it can increase your chance of tooth decay or gum disease? Periodontal disease is an infection of the tissues that surround and support the teeth. Infections of the gums begin when dental plaque is not removed by brushing and flossing. Typical symptoms of periodontal disease are red swollen gums, gums that bleed easily when brushing, and bad breath. If you or anyone you know has these symptoms make sure to see your dentist! There are some things you can do to make sure you stay healthy! First of all, make sure that you're keeping your blood glucose levels under control. Also make sure that you are taking good care of your teeth and gums and getting regular check-ups by your dentist at least every six months. Make sure your dentist knows that you are diabetic and keep him or her informed of any changes and medications that you are taking. If you maintain proper oral hygiene you can reduce your risk of gum disease!

  • In America there are nearly 24 million people that have diabetes (type I and type II). 1 in every 400 children and adolescents and as many as 1 in every 10 adults.  
  • Diabetes makes people more susceptible to bacterial infections, which makes it harder for diabetics to fight off the bacteria that causes gum disease.
  • Did you know that some types of fungi can naturally occur in the mouth? However, good oral hygiene and a healthy immune system can help keep these at bay. Thrush is one of these fungal infections that can occur in the mouth. Thrush produces white or red patches in your mouth that can be painful. Those with diabetes are more prone to thrush due to high glucose levels. If you or someone you know has a fungal infection make sure to see your dentist.

  • Gum disease can start at any age, however children and teenagers who have diabetes are at greater risk for gum disease than those who don't have diabetes.


World Aids Day2In honor of National World AIDS day on December 1st, here is some information about HIV/AIDS and how it can affect your oral health as well. Click here

How much do you know about HIV/AIDS? Test your knowledge here! 


Did you know that 95% of individuals with diabetes have periodontal disease? Read more about how to stop the spread of gum disease for diabetic patients and how your diet relates to tooth decay in the Massachusetts Dental Society Word of Mouth article "Diabetes and Your Oral Health"  and in the American Dental Association's article for the dental patient.

Did you know that the first signs of diabetes may be detected in the dental chair? View this video to learn more! 


Here at the Boston Public Health Commission we understand that it's important for diabetics to eat nutritious foods, drink healthy, incorporate physical activity and practice habits for a healthy lifestyle. Here are a few resources that may be helpful.




Get Healthy Now:

Even when you have a busy schedule there are many things you can do to keep healthy! Boston Public Health Commission has a few ideas! Click here for more information!



We canWe Can:

This is a national program developed by National institutes of Health. This program was started to help prevent obesity among our youth. This program will teach strategies that can help children's developmental weight control. There are many different programs and workshops to help parents and caregivers. Click here for more information.


Corner store3Corner Store Initiative:

This program is all about getting local corner stores to stock more healthy options for their customers such as fresh produce and other healthier options. These stores are also improving how they display and label their items and most importantly to keep their store clean! For more information click here.


TV2 Watching Your Diabetes: Start by watching less TV. A TV habit can be unhealthy for anyone, but it can be worse for people with diabetes. It's hard to follow a meal plan when you are bombarded with advertisements for foods that aren't good for your blood sugar levels or your heart. Physical activity is an important tool in managing your condition. And there's almost nothing that takes less physical activity than watching TV. For more information click here.



Healthy Food on a Budget Blog: Here you will find tips from a registered dietician at the Boston Public Health Commission! Did you know that drinking one can of soda a day can result in an extra weight gain of up to fifteen pounds per year. This past summer many children and adults pledged to either stop drinking soda completely, or to reduce the amount they consume. Try to replace sugary drinks with healthier options such as water or unsweetened tea. Click here to view the blog!


 Support Groups 

Support Group  


Diabetes Support Groups


Boston Medical Center

Center for Endocrine, Diabetes & Nutrition

732 Harrison Avenue

Boston, MA 02118


Call for more information


Brigham and Woman's Hospital

Outpatient Diabetes Education Program

221 Longwood Avenue

Boston, MA 02115


Call for more information


Caritas Christi Healthcare

Cartias St. Elizabeth's Medical Center

736 Cambridge Street

Boston, MA 02135


Call for more information


Joslin Clinic, Joslin Diabetes Center, Inc.

Joslin Diabetes Center

1 Joslin Place

Boston, MA 02215


Call for more information


The Bulfinch Medical Group Diabetes Program- Massachusetts General Hospital

The Bulfinch Medical Group Diabetes Program

275 Cambridge Street

Boston, MA 02114


Call for more information


Families with Diabetes:

An online support group for families with children who have Type 1 Juvenile Diabetes.Email Nebby3@csdmail.com for more information.


Support group 2


HIV/AIDS Support Groups:


Beyond the Numbers Whole Health Forum:

This is a monthly dinner with guest lecturers discussing various health topics.

Every 4th Thursday

6:00 PM to 7:30 PM

75 Amory Street, Boston MA 02119

617-450-1221, emiller@aac.org


Living Positively Support Group:

Open to all men, this group will focuses on health recovery.

Thursday's 1:00 PM to 2:30 PM

75 Amory Street, Boston MA 02119



Massachusetts General Hospital:

Women with HIV

55 Fruist St. Boston, MA 02114



Men's Health Support Group (For straight and gay men)

Weekly: Tuesday 4:00 PM to 5:30 PM

75 Amory Street, Boston MA 02119



MGH Chelsea Health Care Center:

Provides weekly support for HIV+ patients and their families.

151 Everett Ave. Chelsea, MA 02150



Newly Diagnosed Group:

This educational and support group is exclusively for people newly diagnosed with HIV. Confidential pre-registration requested.

Wednesdays, 5:00 PM to 6:30 PM (6 sessions)

MALE Center 571 Columbus Ave. Boston, MA 02118

Please call 617-450-1221 to register


Positive HOPE:

For HIV+pregnant women

Thursday's 10 AM to 11:30 AM (monthly)

Contact:Lynda Shuster 617-414-7834


Women's Monthly Luncheon:

Help shape the future of women's programs at AIDS Action Committee through our discussion lunch series.

Next Date: "Holiday Celebration" on Tuesday, December 28th, from 11:30 AM to 1:30 PM.

AIDS Action Committee, 75 Amory Street, Boston MA 02119



Monthly: PALS Forum,

 Wednesday, December 8th, 11:00 AM to 12:30 PM at ACC, "Kidney Health in the Aging Population", presented by Kelli Collins, LICSW from the Kidney Center in Boston 


 Nutritional Consults (Mondays, 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM at AAC); Wellness/Yoga (Wednesday's, times vary, at AAC); Group Exercise (Fridays, 10:30 AM to 11:30 AM at Revolution Fitness)

Please contact Emerson Miller for more details at emiller@aac.org or at 617-450-1221  


The Male Center HIV Testing

Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays untill 8 PM

Once a month Saturday testing from 11 AM till 5 PM

571 Columbus Ave Boston, MA 02118

(617) 450-1987

Click here for more information  







Upcoming Events and Trainings




If your program or organization has any updates or event information you would like to share, please email our office at oralhealth@bphc.org.




(American Public Health Association (APHA))  - The theme of the meeting is Healthy Communities Promote Healthy Minds & Bodies. October 29- November 2, 2011, Washington, DC. Visit the American Public Health Association's website for more information.




Boston Medical Center's World AIDS Day Event

December 1st, 2011 10:00 AM till 2:00 PM

850 Harrison Avenue, Boston, MA 02118 (Menino Pavilion Lobby)


The Hispanic Dental Association (HDA) Annual Meeting

November 3-5, 2011

Mission Bay Hilton Resort & Spa, San Diego, CA  

Click here for more information.  


Massachusetts Public Health Association Annual Meeting and Conference

November 18, 2011

Doubletree Hotel, Westborough, MA.

Click here for more information.


Joslin Diabetes Center's High Hopes Gala: A world diabetes day celebration in Boston.

November 19th, 2011, Boston, MA.

Click here for more information.  




ISDS 10th Annual Conference 2011- (International Society for Disease Surveillance (ISDS)- December 7-8, 2011, Atlanta, Georgia. The conference is dedicated to the advancement of the technology, research, and the practice of public health surveillance. 

Click here for more information.


17th Annual Maternal and Child Health Epidemiology Conference- (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) The conference aims to bring researchers and health professionals together to work on issues related to improving the health of women, children and families in sharing research, enhancing knowledge, and generating new ideas for improved MCH data use and informed policymaking.

December 14-16,2011, New Orleans, LA.

Click here for more information.




Sugar: In a journey through her own and other's experience with diabetes, Robbie McCauley talks about the shame, pain, and triumphs of people who suffer from "a little bit of sugar". Running time: Approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes.

Friday January 20th through January 29th.

8 P.M. at Paramount Center Boston, MA

Click here for more information.




American Dental Hygienists' Association Workshop: Dental Hygiene in a Changing World: Leading and Developing Your Career

February 25,2012

Doubletree Magnificent Mile Chicago, Chicago, IL

Click here for more information.




28th Annual Oral Health & HIV Symposium:

at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Newton, MA.

March 30, 2012

This symposium is sponsored by NEAETC annually with assistance from the HIV Dental Program.  Some of the topics include an update on infection control, the use of implants in HIV(+) patients, a review of oral manifestations, linkages to medical care, and more.

Click here for more information. Page 42.





Tour de cure: A Bicycle ride to raise money for Diabetes

The Pingree School-South Hamilton, MA

Sunday May 20th 2012

For more information call 1-888 Diabetes or click here.




Tour de cure: A Bicycle ride to raise money for Diabetes

Parker Chomerics- Woburn Ma, July 14th-15th & July 14th-20th, 2010

For more information call 888.342.2382 ext 3456 or click here



If you would like to get involved or have any updates to share, please email our office at oralhealth@bphc.org.

Dog with toothbrush
Be on the lookout for the Oral Health Team's Facebook Competition!!! The Oral Health Team wants to promote good oral hygiene for your entire family, including your pets! Send us a picture of you brushing your pet's teeth. 


Best Regards,
Julianne Ward, Andrea Lam and the Oral Health Team
BPHC Office of Oral Health