|Dear , |
a mental healthcare provider
When your employees need support
for depression, anxiety or another mental health issue, finding the right
therapist can make a big difference. Many people do not know how
to find a therapist to best meet their needs. ODS has experts ready to assist
your employees, and they are only a phone call or e-mail away. We offer your employees:
than 2,000 behavioral health providers in the Oregon and southwest
Washington network to choose from
make sure your employees find a provider that is an ideal match, based on
language, ethnicity and more than 50 behavioral health sub-specialties.
health professionals to help screen for depression and substance abuse
Depression Care health coaching program
of timely outpatient treatment after a psychiatric hospitalization
ODS cares about your employees'
total health and well-being and is committed to supporting your clients with
complete confidentiality. Our Depression Care flyer is
available for you to share with your employees. For more information, contact ODS
|What should you know about getting your teeth bleached?|
Tooth discoloration is a natural process of
aging. As we grow older, our teeth naturally discolor for various reasons.
Children generally appear to have "whiter" teeth because the enamel
on baby teeth tends to be less translucent. The enamel in adults is more
translucent and, as it wears down over the years, the yellow color of the
dentine underneath it begins to show through, giving the teeth a more yellowish
Aside from the aging process, teeth can also
be stained by a variety of factors. Teeth stains are normally categorized as
intrinsic (stains that occurs within the tooth) and extrinsic (stains that occurs
on the surface of the tooth). Common causes of intrinsic stains include trauma,
aging, exposure to certain substances during tooth formation (e.g. Tetracycline
staining), and excessive fluoride exposure. Common causes of extrinsic stains
are the consumption of colored food and drinks (e.g. coffee, tea, red wine),
and smoking or chewing tobacco.
What are the Options for
There are many methods available ranging from
as little as the cost of a tube of toothpaste up to several hundreds of dollars.
Teeth bleaching options can be categorized as those that can be done at home
and those that must be performed in the dental office.
At-Home Tooth Whitening
Probably the simplest and most basic method for whitening
teeth is to use whitening toothpastes. These are usually abrasive in nature and
designed to remove only extrinsic stains through a physical action. Although
all toothpastes contain abrasives, the content of abrasives in whitening
toothpastes is usually higher.
Tooth whitening toothpastes may also contain a bleaching
agent like peroxide to help whiten the tooth chemically. The chemical action is
generally quite limited because the concentration of peroxide in toothpaste is
usually fairly low for safety reasons. Additionally, for a chemical reaction to
take place there must be sufficient contact time. Since most tooth brushing
lasts for two minutes at the most, the peroxide agent has a very limited time
These days there is a large variety of over-the-counter
whitening agents available in the market. They vary in concentration, efficacy
and method. Strips, paint-on gels, and gels in trays designed to be worn over a
few hours are the basic methods through which these whitening systems are
Regardless of the method of application, the basic
function of these whitening agents is to chemically whiten the teeth through
bleaching. As named, they can be bought over the counter at a pharmacy and do
not require a dentist's supervision for use. The efficacy of these methods
really depends on the concentration of the active ingredient and how well and
how long it can remain on the teeth to produce a whitening effect.
In general, paint-on gels are probably the least
effective since saliva can easily wash it away. Whitening strips, though
slightly more effective since the agent is better protected against the saliva,
are still limited in their use if an individual has crooked teeth. Gels in
trays are probably the most effective of the OTC whiteners since they remain in
contact with the teeth for the longest period of time. The main disadvantage of
using OTC gels in trays is that the trays are not made specifically for the
individual and may not fit very well.
Dentist Dispensed Take Home Kits
These are similar to the OTC whitening gels that are
applied in trays but are usually more effective for two reasons. Firstly, the
trays are made by the dentist to fit the individual's specific dental arch,
therefore the whitening agent is held more closely around the teeth. Secondly,
the concentration of the active ingredient is usually higher than those sold
The most costly of
all the whitening procedures, the in office whitening method is also the most
effective. However, because of the high concentration of active agent used and
the potential side effect of tooth sensitivity, it is not suitable for
The in office
whitening procedure generally involves the cleaning of the teeth, followed by
isolation, application of the gel, possible light activation (if the whitening
agent requires it), and removal of the gel. The process may be repeated to
further whiten the teeth. The exact procedure may differ slightly depending on
the type of whitening system the dentist uses.
Regardless of the
type of whitening system used to whiten the teeth, it is important to be aware
that unless you maintain your teeth, the discoloration may return. For
instance, if you resume your daily habit of drinking coffee after whitening
your teeth then it will only be a matter of time before the stains return and
your teeth become discolored again.
The ability to whiten the teeth depends on
the individual and the type of staining involved. Stains, such as those caused by Tetracyline
or trauma, are the hardest to remove. There is a specific procedure for
whitening a dead tooth which involves inserting a bleaching agent into the root
canal of the tooth. This procedure can be pretty effective but for obvious
reasons, it cannot be used on healthy teeth.
The choice of whitening method also depends
on the individual's susceptibility to tooth sensitivity as tooth whitening of
any sort can worsen a pre-existing condition. Additionally, the presence of
other dental work in the mouth can also result in a mismatch of tooth color
since existing fillings and crowns in the mouth will not whiten through the
It should also be noted that some stains are
due to the build up of tartar and plaque deposits on the teeth. Having a
dentist clean your teeth professionally may be all that is required to remove
These days, there are many options available
to an individual desiring to whiten his or her teeth. The method of choice
depends largely on the type of staining involved and the extent that the individual
would like his or her teeth whitened. For instance, an individual with
Tetracycline staining is obviously not going to observe any whitening effect if
he or she relies solely on whitening toothpastes to do the job.
It should also be noted that a certain amount
of discoloration is a normal part of the aging process and does not necessarily
require correcting. Whatever the choice of the individual, it is important to
remain realistic about the color of one's teeth. For some individuals, it may not
be possible to have stark white teeth, though some lightening can be expected.
The Free & Clear® Quit For Life™ Program is available to
many of our members ages 15 and over. The enrollment fee for this program is
$225, which is deducted from the $500 lifetime benefit. Cost of nicotine
replacement therapy and medication in not included in the enrollment fee.
Quit For Life is an evidence-based tobacco cessation program that offers the
phone-based sessions scheduled at your employee's convenience
telephone access to our Quit For Life™ coaches for the duration of the
for medications like the nicotine patch, gum, bupropion or Chantix. The
normal copay applies for prescription medication.
of recommended nicotine replacement products (such as the patch, gum, or
Quit Guide designed to help employees stay on track between calls
web tools to keep employees engaged with other participants and coaches
(1-866-784-8454) or www.quitnow.net
*Not all ODS members are eligible for Free & Clear benefits.
The Oregon Quit Line is available free of charge to residents of Oregon. Your
employees can call an expert Quit Coach to get:
on what to do with urges to smoke or chew.
times and situations when they usually smoke or chew, and ways to change these
routines when they quit
they've tried to quit, Quit Coaches will talk about what hasn't worked and
new things they could try
about medications like the nicotine patch, gum, bupropion or Chantix. The
normal copay applies for prescription medication
Quit Guide designed to help employees stay on track between calls
Or register online at: www.quitnow.net/oregon/
Not all plans
access to all resources or tools referenced in this newsletter. Please
your member handbook, or call your ODS Marketing Representative for
an effort to better serve our members, we are continually reviewing and
updating our forms and processes. Recently, we have made changes to our
enrollment forms. In addition to other, minor changes, the most notable
changes to these forms includes:
request for e-mail addresses
ability to identify the applicant's primary
forms are available on our website
ensure timely processing of enrollment applications please verify that
required fields are completed prior to submitting to ODS.
your Marketing Representative or Billing & Eligibility Specialist