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A Tale of Two Hygienists Podcast

Feb 14, 2019

We get to really nerd out this week as we invite on Ryan Nolan, DMD. Ryan is a practitioner, commentator, and creator of the amazing podcast The Biofilm Factor — where he discusses biofilm management and diet with other dental professionals. He is also a co-founder of Elementa Silver, which specializes in nano silver-driven oral cleaning solutions. His work in dentistry and oral health care is guided by his previous education in chemical engineering, and he approaches the field with an eye for results-based research.

In this episode, Ryan discusses why he switched from chemical engineering to dentistry (and how the former has guided his work), lays out his case for nano silver as a dental cleaning product, and voices his concern at how many trendy dental products are not supported by science.

Listen to the end to hear how he really feels about Charcoal, Chx Rinse, Toothpaste companies and more!


The interview begins: 3:11

- How Ryan's product design work allows him to express his creativity within dental work.

- Pinpointing areas within the dental profession that could still be vastly improved through new technology and treatments.

- The "21st century gap" in dental care and treatment and how much catch-up the industry needs to do.

- What are "preventative products" and why it's important to make a push for them.

- The limitations of in vitro testing and some important factors that process can't account for.

-What are the pros and cons of Silver Diamine Fluoride

- How silver, much like family trees, has several generations.

- Are there benefits to using silver in toothbrush bristles?

- Balancing treatment with price to do the absolute best by our patients.

- The skeletons in chlorhexidine's closet that make it an inadvisable treatment.

- Ryan dishes out the truth about Sensodyne and explains why he's skeptical of certain toothpaste trends.


"I could never shake this idea that we couldn't do things better, and that's kind of where I'm at right now."

"Dental innovation in prevention sectors is basically nonexistent."

"It's like filling a house with balls, right? Eventually, it's gonna be more dense, if that makes sense."

"The thing I love about nanosilver is that you don't need to be a genius to hit the broad side of a barn."

"The human body has got so many defense systems in place to prevent a lot of these things from developing."

"Anytime you put something through a heated process and it's plastic, there's gonna be some no-nos that come out of that."

"Ortho patients need interdental brushes, 100%."

"You can't deny data."


The Biofilm Factor -

Elementa Silver -

Elementa Silver on Amazon -

Elementa Silver on Instagram (@elementaoralcare) -

Ryan on Instagram (@ryannolandnd) -

Thank you to Paradise Dental Technologies aka PDT for providing sponsorship for this episodes CE credits!

THIS EPISODE COUNTS FOR CE! - but read the disclaimer below as it might not count for your state.

Go here to take the test and get your CE Credit!

Approved Pace Program Provider FAGD/MAGD Credit Approval Does Not Imply Acceptance By A State Or Provincial Board of Dentistry Or AGD Endorsement. 1/1/18- 12/31/19 Provider #373236

Be sure to thank the sponsor for CE for this episode by heading over to and picking up a new instrument or telling them thank you in person at one of the conferences!