To our wonderful patients:

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We hope you and your family are in good health. Our community has been through a lot over the last few months, and all of us are looking forward to resuming our normal habits and routines. While many things have changed, one thing has remained the same: our commitment to your safety.

Infection control has always been a top priority for our practice and you may have seen this during your visits to our office. Our infection control processes are made so that when you receive care, it’s both safe and comfortable. We want to tell you about the infection control procedures we follow in our practice to keep patients and our team safe.

Our office follows infection control recommendations and regulations made by the Alberta Dental Association and College (ADA& C). We follow the activities of our College and Alberta Health Services so that we are up-to-date on any new rulings or guidance that may be issued. We do this to make sure that our infection control procedures are current and adhere to each agencies’ recommendations.

You may see some changes when it is time for your next appointment. We made these changes to increase the protection of our patients and our Urban Smiles Family Dental Team. Here is a list of some changes and guidelines for your upcoming appointments:

  • Prior to your appointment, you will be receiving a text message and/or an email with a Covid-19 related screening questionnaire. Please read through the questions carefully and inform us before arriving at our office if you answer “yes” to any of the pre-screening questions.
  • For the immediate future, our waiting room will be closed and not in use. When you arrive and you are safely parked at our office, we ask that you please give us a phone call to let us know you arrived.
  • We ask you to please wait in your vehicle until we are ready for you and we will either text or call you when we are ready and it is okay to enter the office.
  • When you enter the office, you will be asked to confirm all questions on the Covid-19 screening questionnaire are still “no” answers. We will also use a digital touchless thermometer to check your temperature. If any question on the questionnaire is a “yes” or if you are found to have a temperature higher than 38 degrees, we will be required to reschedule your appointment after an appropriate amount of time to insure the safety of all our patients and our Urban Smiles Family Dental team.
  • If all is well, you will be escorted directly to your treatment room where you will be asked to thoroughly wash your hands or be given a squirt of hand sanitizer before being seated and asked to rinse with a pre-procedural rinse prior to your treatment.
  • After treatment you may be asked to rinse with another post-procedural rinse and receive another squirt of hand sanitizer.
  • Our goal is to arrange future appointments in the clinical area and only financial arrangements will be handled at the front desk. As far as possible receipts will be e-mailed out and only if you need to sign insurance claim forms will paper forms be printed.
  • We have acquired additional equipment and products to enhance our cleaning procedures. These include Air Purifiers, UV-C lights, HOCl fogging equipment and more.
  • All staff in the office will be wearing masks. Although you cannot see behind the masks, please know that we are welcoming you back with a big smile.

Appointments will be managed to allow for social distancing between patients. To allow us to practice social distancing and maximize safety for our patients, we may have to change our hours slightly and we will keep you updated as these changes take place. This will allow our team to work in shifts, reduce the number of people in our office at any given time, have room to spread our patients out, and extra time to disinfect our treatment rooms.

To help us with our social distancing measures, we ask for you to please come alone to your appointments. The only exceptions to this rule are for children, patients needing an interpreter and disabled patients. However, we do ask that only a single parent or legal guardian bring their child to their scheduled appointment and that no other children are brought to the appointment, as well. If you can’t attend your appointment alone or if your appointment time doesn’t allow you to bring a single child, please let us know so we can reschedule your appointment for a time that works better for you.

Please note that we will do our best to run on time to reduce waiting times, but dentistry and healthcare can be very unpredictable at times, so please be patient with us and we will do our best to take care of you.

The systems we’ve implemented for everyone’s safety are new to us and I’m sure we will have some speed bumps as we begin using them. Please know, we are doing everything we can to take great care and accommodate you.

We look forward to seeing you again and are happy to answer any questions you may have about the steps we take to keep you, and every patient, safe in our practice. To make an appointment, please call our office at 780-989 6030.

Thank you for being our patient. We value your trust and loyalty and look forward to welcoming back our patients, neighbours and friends.


Dr. Rob Andrew and Associates and the entire Urban Smiles Family Dental Team

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For most, dry mouth is not a common thing but as you grow older it does become a common problem. Most likely caused by dehydration, or by simply sleeping with an open mouth.

Unfortunately, for others, dry mouth is a chronic problem that can have a distressing impact on day-to-day life. In addition to the physical side effects, it can also leave people feeling far less confident in social situations, to the point where eating and speaking in public becomes upsetting.

Current research estimates that around one in four adults suffer from the condition and this number rises to 40% in the over-55s. This makes dry mouth one of the most common oral health problems.

To help you understand more about dry mouth, here are some facts about the condition and our best advice for managing it.

Top Eight facts about dry mouth:

1. Dry mouth or ‘xerostomia’ is a condition that affects the flow of saliva, causing your mouth to feel dry.

2. Your mouth needs saliva to be able to work properly. Saliva keeps your mouth moist, and it helps to break down your food and helps you to swallow. It also acts as a cleanser, neutralizing plaque acids. It is constantly washing around your mouth and teeth, fighting tooth decay and helping to keep your teeth clean.

3. Having less saliva can also affect the taste of food and makes it harder to eat drier foods. Sometimes it can affect your speech and it makes people more likely to have bad breath.

4. Dry mouth is usually worse at night when the mouth produces less saliva than in the daytime.

5. Dry mouth can cause the mouth to become sore and there is a higher risk of tooth decay and gum disease.

6. It can be caused as a result of old age, or, quite often it is a side effect of medication – especially heart, blood pressure, and depression tablets. Your doctor, pharmacist or dental team should be able to tell you whether your medication can cause problems.

7. Women are more likely to suffer from the chronic dry mouth than men (27 percent compared to 21 percent).

8. Studies have shown that those that suffer from the chronic dry mouth also have a higher risk of mental health illnesses and social anxiety.

Top Four tips:

1. Make sure you regularly visit your dentist – You have a higher risk of tooth decay and gum disease with dry mouth, and these can get worse quicker than usual. So it is important to visit your dental team regularly. They will tell you how often you should visit.

2. It is important to use a fluoride toothpaste containing at least 1350 to 1500ppm (parts per million) of fluoride. Be aware that some products contain Sodium Lauryl Sulphate (SLS), and some people with dry mouth find this can irritate the mouth and make the condition worse.

3. There are many products designed to help your mouth stay moist and comfortable. These are usually gels or sprays. Some have extra ingredients that may help prevent tooth and gum problems. There are also special products to help with your day-to-day oral hygiene (for example toothpaste and mouth rinses).

4. Chewing sugar-free gum can help ease dry mouth as it encourages your mouth to make saliva. Your dental team might recommend products such as rinses, gels, pastes, and lozenges which you can get from the pharmacist.

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How Dental Health Affects Overall Health?

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Do you know how dental health affects overall health? If no, this post is for you.

Focusing on oral health would not only be beneficial for teeth, but it also creates a great impact on overall health. Proper oral health care assures the well-being at every stage of your life. Researchers have found that a person’s dental health and overall health are related in some manner.

Your mouth and body, both are integral to each other. Bacteria from your mouth may cause infection in other parts of your body. This is the reason why when you go to a doctor, they ask you to open your mouth. The doctor checks out saliva flow, it helps them in knowing what’s going on in your body.

As your mouth is the entry point to your respiratory and digestive tracts, poor oral health may lead to many diseases. Poor oral hygiene may cause diseases such as oral cancers, heart disease, diabetes, respiratory disease, periodontal disease, stroke, gum disease, osteoporosis, and rheumatoid arthritis.

If you are facing any issue in maintaining good oral health, then you must take a visit to “Urban Smiles Family Dental” by Dr. Rob Andrew. Here at “Urban Smiles Family Dental”, we provide treatment for all types of dental problems whether it is gum infection, bad breath, tooth decay,  tooth erosion, tooth sensitivity, toothaches or any other dental problem.

How to Protect Oral Health from Dental Problems?

Add below-given things in your day to day life to protect your oral health from the dental problems mentioned above:

1. Brushing

To improve your oral and overall health, brushing plays a significant role. You must brush at least two times a day with a soft-bristled brush, one in the morning after waking up and second at the night before going to bed.

2. Use mouthwash

Sometimes, some food particles get between your teeth even after you brush and floss your teeth. In such situations, it is advisable to use mouthwash.  Mouthwash removes food particles remains even after the brush and floss.

3. Limit sugar items

Overconsumption of sugary food items causes cavities and destroys your teeth. Sugar and sugary food items invite dangerous bacteria that destroys tooth enamel and which leads to cavity in the tooth.

4. Eat Healthy Food

Dental problems also occur due to improper diet. You should avoid eating junk food items, instead of that, start eating healthy foods.

5. Replace the Toothbrush Before Three Months

Due to the usage of the toothbrush, its bristles get splayed and using splayed brush would not clean your teeth effectively. Hence, replace your toothbrush within three months of time duration, if the bristles get splayed.

Here, we can see how your dental health affects your overall health. Once you will start focusing on your oral health by having regular checkups, limiting sugary food items, eating healthy, etc., you would be able to resolve your dental problems. 

For any queries, visit our “Urban Smiles Family Dental” or call us. 

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DIY Dental

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We live in a time where cutting out the middleman- becoming disrupters– is the most sought after business model.  Companies such as Uber, Amazon, AirBnB and Eat Fresh have found ways to cut out convention, and change how we view some of the enterprises in which we utilize in our day-to-day lives. 

In the Instagram, Podcast, era, there’s no shortage of ads for new mail order products.  Many are great.  Fresh groceries delivered to your home?  A time savings, AND a healthier alternative to food delivery.  A subscription clothing service?  Might be a great way to accessorize and add to or kickstart a wardrobe.  Especially for those without time, or the aptitude for it. 

For all of the good products and services available online, some still have a buyer beware warning. 

Would you trust a Do-It-Yourself tattoo kit?  Complete with stencils, needles and ink?  Would you cut your own hair?  Would you trust doing your own eye exam, creating a prescription and purchasing glasses or contacts based on this self-diagnosis?

Well- now you can be your own dentist.  You can purchase teeth whitening kits, which may utilize harmful levels of bleaching agents, which could irritate or damage teeth or gums. 

There are also braces that can be purchased online, which promise to deliver similar results to orthodontist grade braces, but at a fraction of the price and from the comfort of your own home- without an appointment.

And of course, you can purchase electronic toothbrushes online, which brand themselves as being more efficient, more powerful, and more cost-sensitive than some of the dentist approved options, sold in stores.

We’re not suggesting that you DON’T purchase these items.  But before you do, DO consult Dr. Rob Andrew and the team at Urban Smiles Family Dental. 

You’ll be glad you did.

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How to Choose the Right Electric Toothbrush for you.

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Buying the right electric toothbrush and using the right toothpaste. When looking for an electric toothbrush, we would recommend buying one with the following features:

What the best electric toothbrush has:

  • Simple operation. Electric toothbrushes should be comfortable to hold and easy to use, with simple controls that don’t require an engineering degree to decipher. The brush heads’ movement and size should make it easy to manipulate in the mouth.
  • Helpful features. A two-minute timer with 30-second intervals is almost a must-have in electric toothbrushes, since prompting you to brush for two minutes is their main purpose. Other features like travel cases and charging stands may not be necessary but might be handy depending upon your available space and your lifestyle.
  • Good performance. An electric toothbrush should run smoothly and consistently, without any hitches or surges when warning you to change quadrants. A water flosser should not leak or spray from the nozzle, handle or connector.
  • Long-term durability. Durability is extremely important when it comes to electric toothbrushes and flossers, which already have ongoing costs for replacement brush heads and jet picks. For best performance, brush heads should be replaced every three months; jet picks for water flossers should be replaced every six months.

5 Electric Tooth Brushes at the Top of the Class.

Philips Sonicare- Diamond Clean

  • Removes up to 10x more plaque than a manual toothbrush
  • Improves gum health in only two weeks
  • Whitens teeth in just one week
  • 5 brushing modes
  • Diamond Clean brush head for Philips Sonicare’ s best whitening and Adaptive Clean brush head for Philips Sonicare’ s best plaque removal

Oral-B Pro Power Rechargeable 1000

  • Removes 300% more plaque along the gum line than a regular manual toothbrush
  • Senses when you brush too hard with pressure sensor
  • In-handle timer pulses every 30 seconds to let you know when to switch areas of the mouth
  • Rechargeable battery toothbrush with 1 mode – Daily Clean
  • Compatible with Oral-B brush heads for every oral care need: CrossAction, FlossAction, Precision Clean, 3D White, Sensitive Gum Care, Deep Sweep, Dual Clean
  • In-handle timer pulses every 30 seconds to let you know when to switch areas of the mouth

Philips Sonicare-2 HX6211/04

  • Electric rechargeable toothbrush removes up to 6x more plaque than a manual toothbrush
  • Removes up to 6x more plaque than a manual toothbrush
  • Patented sonic technology: With up to 31,000 brush strokes per minute, dynamic fluid action helps clean between teeth and along the gum line
  • Smartimer encourages 2 minutes of brushing as recommended by dentists
  • Easy-start feature slowly increases power over first 14 uses making the switch to Philips Sonicare easy
  • Two-color battery charge indicator lets you know when to recharge. 2 weeks battery life

Pursonic High Power S520

  • Comes with 12 brush heads, 2 hygienic travel caps, 2 interdental brush heads, 2 tongue cleaners, and 2 floss holders
  • 2 minute timer with a 30 second vibrate alert in order to remind you to brush a different quadrant of your mouth
  • 40,000 sonic strokes per minute to effectively remove plaque without irritating your gums
  • 4 colour coated brush heads are great to share this product with up to 4 different users
  • 1 year warranty

Waterpik Sensonic SR-3000

  • More effective sonic toothbrushing for healthier gums and brighter teeth
  • State-of-the-art sonic technology delivering powerful, yet gentle plaque removal
  • Features advanced brush head design, with extra-soft, end-rounded bristles, gently targets those hard to reach areas between teeth
  • Ergonomic handle, 3 brush heads, 2 speed settings, 2-minute timer with a 30-second quadrant pacer, and a premium hard-sided travel case
  • Any warranty will be voided through the sale and use of the product outside North America. Shipment outside of North America is prohibited by Waterpik

We really hope this helped, but keep in mind prices vary on these five. Look around and shop around and find the best one for YOU!

Make your next appointment with Urban Smiles Family Dental and Dr. Rob Andrew. Hoping to see you soon.

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15 Fun Facts about Teeth

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Here at Urban Smiles Family Dental with Dr. Rob Andrew we believe it’s important to not only treat our patients with high quality care, but to educate them about their oral health so they can be empowered to live healthy lives.

Below are 15 fun facts about teeth we thought you’d enjoy learning about.

  1. Today’s tooth fairy needs a lot more silver than she did in 1900, when she left an average of twelve cents. In 1998, the tooth fairy left an average of one dollar. In 2019, the going rate for a lost tooth reached an all-time high with an average rate for of $3.70 per tooth.
  2. The enamel on the top surface on your tooth is the hardest part of your entire body.
  3. Teeth start to form even before you are born—milk teeth or baby teeth start to form when the baby is in the womb, but they come through when the child is between 6-12 months old.
  4. Humans use four different types of teeth (incisors, canine, premolars, and molars) to cut, tear and grind their food.
  5. Humans have only two sets of teeth in their entire lifetime—baby teeth and permanent teeth. Once you have your permanent teeth, make sure you take good care of them.
  6. No two people have the same set of teeth—your teeth are as unique as your fingerprint, so be proud of your unique set of teeth.
  7. Your mouth produces over 25,000 quarts of saliva in a lifetime—that’s enough to fill two swimming pools. Saliva has many uses, including assisting you with your digestion and protects your teeth from bacteria in your mouth.
  8. An average person spends 38.5 days brushing their teeth over their lifetime.
  9. Many diseases are linked to your oral health, including heart disease, osteoporosis, and diabetes.
  10. One third of your tooth is underneath your gums—that means only two thirds of your tooth’s length is visible.
  11. If you get your tooth knocked out, put it in milk and hold it in your mouth—this will help your tooth to survive longer. Make sure you see a dentist right away.
  12. On September 20th, China celebrates “Love your Teeth Day” – a national holiday promoting oral awareness among its 1.2 billion people.
  13. Certain cheeses including aged cheddar, swiss and monterey jack have been found to protect teeth from decay.
  14. Not only is tooth decay the most common and widespread disease of humankind, it is the oldest. Skulls of pre-historic humans have been examined and tooth decay has been found.
  15. Athletes are 60 times more likely to damage their teeth when not wearing a mouth guard during athletic activities.

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Who Invented Dental Floss?

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Mr. Levi Spear Parmly, a dentist from New Orleans,working in Canada is credited with inventing the first form of dental floss. In 1819, he recommended running a waxen silk thread “through the interstices of the teeth, between their necks and the arches of the gum, to dislodge that irritating matter which no brush can remove and which is the real source of disease. He considered this the most important part of oral care. Floss was not commercially available until 1882, when the Codman and Shurtleft company started producing unwaxed silk floss. In 1898, the Johnson & Johnson Corporation received the first patent for dental floss that was made from the same silk material used by doctors for silk stitches.

One of the earliest depictions of the use of dental floss in literary fiction is found in James Joyce’s famous novel Ulysses (serialized 1918–1920), but the adoption of floss was low before World War II. During the war, nylon floss was developed by physician Charles C. Bass. Nylon floss was found to be better than silk because of its greater abrasion resistance and because it could be produced in great lengths and at various sizes.

Floss became part of American and Canadian daily personal care routines in the 1970s.]

Dental Floss Innovations (1940-1950)

During the 1940s, nylon replaced silk as the material for dental floss. Its consistent texture and resistance to shredding were an improvement over the silk versions. The use of nylon also allowed for the development of waxed floss in the 1940s, and for the development of dental tape in the 1950s.

Dental Floss Today

Since then, the variety of types of dental floss has expanded to include newer materials such as Gore-Tex, and different textures such as spongy floss and soft floss. And today’s floss has other features to make flossing easier. For example, floss with stiffened ends is designed to help with flossing around braces or other dental appliances.

Today, floss is a key part of twice daily brushing, daily flossing, and regular use of a mouthwash that make up a healthy routine for maintaining your oral health.

Factors to be considered when choosing the right Floss or whether the use of floss as an interdental cleaning device is appropriate may be based on:

  • The tightness of the contact area: determines the width of floss
  • The contour of the gingival tissue
  • The roughness of the interproximal surface
  • The client’s manual dexterity and preference: to determine if supplemental device is required

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Your teeth, like the earth we walk on, are prone to erosion.

A 2015 poll from Yale University Rudd Center For Food Policy and Obesity study found that a majority of Americans understand that soda is bad for them.  However, as many as 48% are estimated to drinking soda on a daily basis.  How much soda?  A poll suggested as many as 2.6 glasses per day!

Your tooth enamel is the hard outer surface layer of your teeth that helps protect against tooth decay.  Did you know that your enamel is the hardest mineral substance of the body?  Fact.  It’s even harder than bone.

A major enemy of the enamel are acids.  There are natural occurring acids, which you can combat through regular dental and oral care (ask Dr. Rob about this).  But then there are things such as juices, citrus fruits, pops and other food items which can batter the surface of the enamel, softening it over time.

That’s not to say you shouldn’t drink an iced cold soda, from time to time.  I mean- there’s really nothing more refreshing than a Coke to wash down a burger or a slice of cheesy pizza.  But like the greasy food you’ll likely pair the soda with, you should limit your consumption and instead opt for a more teeth sensitive beverage option.

Another cause of erosion is the grinding of your teeth.  Perhaps it’s stress-related, but many people grind their teeth in their sleep, without realizing they do, which can lead to cracked teeth and erosion over time.  It can also cause jaw soreness, headaches and other ailments.  Not to mention, a disturbance in the quality of your sleep.

Preventative measures, such as a fitted mouth guard to wear during your sleep, can help counter the wear and tear on your teeth. 

It’s important to schedule regular check ups to ensure your teeth are in good shape.  Our diets may change, our stress levels can change, and even if you don’t think you’re prone to erosion, that may have changed since your last checkup.

Schedule yours today. 

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Have you ever tried a drugstore whitening strip?

If you have, you’ve also had to try removing one- a challenge, right up there with picking a wet watermelon seed off of a kitchen floor, and of course- “the cinnamon challenge”.  It’s sticky, and seems to dissolve in the bed of bleach froth that accumulated after a recommended 30 minute session.  Placed incorrectly, the bleach can irritate gums— likely to happen, since these are a one-size-fits-all model, and not custom to the user. 

Have you ever used a tray— custom or otherwise- for teeth whitening?  I’m talking about either the overnight model, or the wear during the day model.  Have you?

If you have, you’ve likely found it uncomfortable to wear them overnight, and perhaps you’ve worn through a tray or two at night?  That’s a whole other issue, altogether… The daytime wear trays are a nuisance, in that you have to set aside time during the day to do it.  Do you have say-

30 minutes or more where you won’t have to speak with anyone and can walk around with a tray in your mouth, full of bleaching gel?  Oh- and by the way, you’ll need to do this for multiple treatments, on an ongoing basis throughout the year for maintenance.  The gel can also be quite costly.  Can you find them cheaply online?  Of course, but at what cost?  Are the materials or the solution balances safe for prolonged usage?  Would your dentist approve of them?  Have they been approved by the Canadian Dental Association, and other regulating bodies?  Probably not.  And again, they’re inconvenient, and they can be quite uncomfortable. 

Since you will want more immediate whitening results, and you’ll want to do it in as few sessions as possible, with the least amount of inconvenience or discomfort, I would suggest speak with your dentist or hygienist about Zoom. 

White teeth are attainable.  You don’t need to have to wear uncomfortable trays while you sleep, schedule time each day to wear trays, or have to peel away sticky strips from your burning gum line in order to have them.

Zoom Whitening is available at Urban Smiles. 

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The Importance Of Flossing In 2019

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Science.  Facts.  Research.  Don’t worry about it.

The point is- you need to do it.  Your dental care (possibly your friendships) depends on it. 

A report published by the American Dental Association, dated August 3rd, 2016, had this to say on flossing:

“In its statement the ADA said: “Cleaning between teeth removes plaque that can lead to cavities or gum disease from the areas where a toothbrush can’t reach. “Interdental cleaning is proven to help remove debris between teeth that can contribute to plaque build-up.”

“Toothbrush can’t reach?”  Right.  Between the teeth, and in the depths of the gum line.  Imagine this:  you ate a great dinner.  Steak, potatoes, vegetables… perhaps a salad beforehand.  You finished with a nice piece of chocolate cake.  A leisurely brushing preempted bedtime, and you headed to lala land for an 8 hour slumber.  Eight hours for the left behind food particles- of which their are many, no doubt, after the steak, romaine, and the rest of your smorgasbord compounded itself into an oral compost.  Your mouth- akin to a Petri dish- with a full classroom of bacteria, present and ready to show you how to lose friends and alienate people.

Now what does that do to your mouth?  Your breath?

If you had flossed, prior to brushing, the cleaning agents in the toothpaste and the mouthwash after, would better be able to eradicate any of the would-be bacteria that would otherwise be present.

You would wake up fresher, with a mouth less likely to be at risk of plaque, gingivitis or other ne’er-do-wells. 

Flossing is so very important.  And today, you’re not restricted to the conventional flossing methods, as other options are plentiful in the marketplace.

Ask your dentist today, for a solution that would work best for you. 

Flossing could easily become a part of your routine.  Try it today.

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