Dr. Jeremy Ueno

Innovator Series

Join us to discuss Dr. Jeremy Ueno's new book for patients about the mouth/body connection. You don't want to miss this!

Video transcription:

Liz Lundry, RDH - “Hello and welcome to the StellaLife Innovators Series. I'm Liz Lundry, and today we're featuring Dr. Jeremy Ueno. Dr. Ueno, a periodontist, is the founder and owner of the Ueno Center Dental Specialists in Campbell, California, in the heart of Silicon Valley. His busy and progressive practice features multiple surgical specialists backed by an exceptional team. He's passionate about education and is a national and international lecturer and leads several study clubs. This passion for education, as well as his own health journey, prompted him to write this book called Oral Fitness, to guide his patients to understand the oral systemic link and help them make lifestyle choices to ensure better overall health. We are very proud to present Dr. Jeremy Ueno.”

Dr. Jeremy Ueno - “Hi, I'm Dr. Jeremy Ueno. I'm a periodontist here in Campbell, California, which is in the heart of Silicon Valley. I really want to thank StellaLife for giving me the opportunity to talk about the new book that I just launched in September. It is sold on Amazon, it's called Oral Fitness and so, just want to be able to talk about how I feel like this can help a lot of people's practices, patients and also family members so I think it's a really important thing for education overall. In terms of our relationship with StellaLife, we are a surgical office and so we've been using StellaLife for the last about a year and a half now, and it's changed a lot of our patients' lives in terms of their recovery. They like that it's a natural homeopathic medication as well, and being in California, people really like that a lot. With that, we're seeing less inflammation, better post-op healing, and so our relationship with StellaLife has been phenomenal since we've been working with them. That being said, I know that they're also very into the oral systemic link. As a periodontist, we are very in tune to the oral systemic link and that's the kind of motivation for myself to write this book. This book kind of talks about my journey, going through my dental training, going through my residency and learning about the oral systemic link, and then going into private practice. I was 30 years old when I started private practice. The oral systemic link was something that I knew about, I studied on, but it's something that I didn't really live because I was young, I was healthy at that time and so for me, it's something that I felt like I talked about, but I wasn't able to connect with my patients really on it because I was just talking about it. In my early years of practice, we got really busy with the office, just like anyone that starts their own practice and with that, starting a family at that time as well, and I let my health go during that time. I gained probably about 60 pounds in a couple of years and a lot of that was I tore my Achilles playing basketball. I had two different surgeries there, and I got complacent. And with that, I was in my mid to late 30s, and I was put on cholesterol medication, I was put on medication for my hypertension and I just felt like I was too young to be on these types of medications. And so I had to go through a journey of my own to become healthy again and that went through finding a trainer, doing the right exercise routines, got a nutritionist to kind of teach me how to eat properly. And so all that together, as I went through my journey from becoming unhealthy to healthy, it really made a lot of these things click in terms of the oral systemic connection, because I actually just lived that journey. I lived a journey of a body full of inflammation. I lived a journey of being unhealthy and knowing how it feels to be unhealthy. And for me, I felt like I was living a lie. If I'm talking to patients about this oral systemic link, if I'm talking to patients about being healthier, yet I wasn't doing it myself. So with that journey, just really, like I said, a kind of lightbulb went off into my head, and I was able to connect with patients more with that. A few of my associates are very well versed, and also some of my hygienists are very well versed in terms of the oral systemic link and so with that, we just kind of started talking and how we can implement this more into our office. It's one of those things with the oral systemic link that all of us dentists, all the hygienists, a lot of people on the dental team have heard about, have read about, have seen videos on, but talking about it is a lot more difficult and connecting with people having good, hard information about it, facts about what the oral systemic link is, research on it as well, now it's something that I think we fall short on. So we're like, "oh, you know what? You have gum disease, so we're in diabetes", but why? If you have gum disease, you can have an increased risk of heart disease. Yeah, but your patients like, "why?". And so I know a lot of people have that issue where once that question gets asked, that becomes kind of an area where they saw. And so what I wanted to do was put together a book, then that talked about my journey as one part of why this hits home for me now and then how that then relates to our field, to our patients. It's something that we as healthcare professionals can read, it's easy reading, our dental team can read, it helps them with their education on the oral systemic link, and most importantly, our patients can read it. And we've been giving this book to all of our patients that come into the office now, and it's an easy book to read, and it gives them a lot of information on their specific issues that they may have. So in this book, there's multiple chapters, and each chapter does hit on, say, a different oral systemic link. And I was fortunate enough to have really good friends and family members who wanted to contribute to this. So one of my associates, she wrote a portion of this. My cousin, some good friends of mine also wrote portions of this. So every chapter we start off with the story. And so the chapter that relates to heart disease starts off with the story of myself where I was actually at a dental convention in Las Vegas, and it was about oral systemic health and on the flight back, there was an Asian male in his early 40s. I was in my late 30s at this time, and he was with his family with his couple of kids, and he had a heart attack on the plane. And I just remember everyone's giving him CPR for the whole plane ride. At the very end, they had the emergency team come on and they pronounced him dead on the scene. And it was eye opening for me to just come back from a conference where they discussed oral systemic health and someone that was pretty much my age with a family just died on an airplane. And so seeing things like that really kind of opens your eyes and makes you think if something was caught earlier, if something could have been done for this person, if someone intervened earlier with education for this person, could have changed their life. There's a chapter on pregnancy. So my good friend Dr. Lorna Okada, has her story on pregnancy in there and then we discuss how, say, gum disease affects pregnancy. My cousin Brad Tanimura in Hawaii, he has a chapter on cancer. So his mom, my aunt, she passed away with cancer. So he talks about his journey with that, and that kind of leads into that whole story as well. So when I read this book myself, it does bring back a lot of memories for me just because it is personal. A lot of the stories in here are personal. They are close friends, family members that have contributed so it means a lot to me. But I also think the education portion is very good for our patients and for our team. Personally, another thing that hits home for me is autism. My oldest son is autistic and we had learned, my wife is a dentist, we had learned through our airway training that pregnant mothers who have airway issues can also have increased rates of children with autism. My wife's a mouth breather, and she does have upper airway restriction. And so that kind of also gave me inspiration in terms of the way I practiced and in terms of what we wrote in the book as well. So there's a lot of talk about airway in here. The way we practice in our office is a complete health type setting where a patient comes in and we don't just talk about their teeth, we talk about what we see in the mouth and how that can affect the rest of their body. So just yesterday, we had some consultations and I had a consultation just on recession, and for the first ten minutes, we didn't even talk about recession, we talked about why the recession may have happened because of the airway issues, because let's say the teeth weren't aligned correctly, there's not enough tongue space, we take a CT out of the airway software where we can see the size of the airway. So our practice is really based upon making people healthier and more importantly, we want to make the kids healthier. And so my associate, Dr. Bui, she's very good at treating tongue ties, so we deal with a lot of tongue ties, she does a lot of tongue tie release with a laser and also with a zoggy tagging technique as well, we send patients to malfunctional Therapists, we have a great connection with Ed and TS, oral surgeons and great orthodontists in the area. So what we build is a team to help treat these patients effectively, and again, we're going above and beyond just regular dentistry. So my heart and soul is in here. This is what we believe in our practice, not just myself, not just the associates, not just the hygienist, but the entire team. We want to make our patients healthier. We want to make a better future for the children that are here as well. I really encourage everyone out there to get a copy, see if they like it, if they feel like it's something that's good for their patience, offer it to their patients as well. Again, I think this is really great for our patients because it is easy reading, we do put everything in a lot of laid terms so people can understand it. But again, thank you for your time. I really appreciate you guys chiming in or turning in here and taking a look and considering the book here. It is sold on Amazon. It's called Oral Fitness. Again, I'm Dr. Jeremy Ueno and have a great day.”

Liz Lundry, RDH - “Thank you, Dr. Ueno. When I heard about the book, I got my own copy from Amazon and I found it to be an enjoyable read with great information and compelling personal experiences. As a clinician and educator, I think this is a great resource and we should give this to each of our patients. If we don't help our patients understand the role inflammation plays and how they can take action, which includes accepting our treatment plans, then we're just spinning our wheels, we are treating symptoms with a temporary fix. So let's be a part of the revolution for complete health dentistry. Until next time, stay healthy, stay safe.”