Improve Oral Health To Improve Diabetes!

Although many adults feel that brushing their teeth twice a day is sufficient for maintaining a healthy mouth, these measures fall short of preventing cavities and gum disease. It is estimated that only 12% of the adult population in the U. S. floss their teeth daily. Additionally, many adults fail to keep their 6-month dental hygiene appointments, using a rationale of  “if it doesn’t hurt, nothing is wrong.”

In a country as developed as the United States, it’s unfortunate that so many have some level of periodontal (gum) disease, nearly half of all adults over the age of 30. The bacteria of gum disease not only contributes to cavities and tooth loss, it can cause an inflammatory reaction in the body. Oral bacteria, once bloodborne, has been linked to heart disease, stroke, memory loss, arthritis, preterm babies and impotency.

Research also shows a link between gum disease and diabetes. It’s yet to be determined where the connection begins or if one disease causes the other. However, considering that there are more than 25 million American adults who are diabetic, the need for continued studies is important.

On the positive side, it has been shown that once diabetics improve their periodontal health, they can also improve the complications of diabetes and even the control of blood sugar.

As studies continue on health problems related to gum disease, remember that preventing the disease is easier and less expensive than treating it. If you have been less than diligent with your daily brushing and flossing or have delayed regular dental check-ups, call toll free 1-866-9-Smiles to arrange this first step to a healthier smile and healthier overall you!

Vitamin C Is Beneficial To Teeth & Gums

A recent release in the Journal of Periodontology cites that consuming 180 mg of vitamin C per day gives your gums and teeth a healthy boost. Why? To begin, vitamin C is an anti-inflammatory. It also binds cells to build connective tissue with collagen. Vitamin C has even been shown to increase bone regrowth, which helps to restore teeth.

Dietary sources of vitamin C include coconut water, citrus fruits (lemons, limes, grapefruit, etc.), red peppers, brussels sprouts, broccoli and oranges. Because chewable vitamin C is highly acidic, it should be avoided since it can erode tooth enamel. If your diet lacks the ample amount of vitamin C rich foods, a non-acidic powder form can be purchased. Another option is vitamin C chewing gum.

Healthy teeth and gums create a more attractive smile, give fresher breath and decrease your risk of tooth loss. While foods and vitamin supplements are beneficial to maintaining a healthy mouth, having a professionally cleaned mouth is your best choice. If you haven’t kept regular dental cleaning visits and/or do not floss daily, arrange an examination by calling toll free 1-866-9-Smiles.

Today’s Dentistry Helps You Conquer Dental Fear

If you fear going to the dentist, you are not alone. It is estimated that over 30% of Americans avoid going to the dentist because of some level of anxiety or fear. Even worse, about 10% of those are classified as “dental phobics,” or persons with such a high fear level that they avoid the dentist until an emergency need arises.

With these statistics, it comes as no surprise that the nation’s leading cause of tooth loss is periodontal disease. Without 6-month check-ups and cleanings, your risk of developing gum disease, among other problems, is high.

If the fear of discomfort has prevented you from regular dental care, you are encouraged to share those feelings with a dentist who is sensitive to your concerns. This discussion will allow us to understand your level of fear and explain the methods of comfort available.
In our office, we offer both Oral and I.V. Sedation. Oral Sedation is in pill form so there are no needles used to administer the medication. You can doze through treatment and have little or no memory of the procedure afterward. The medication is safe and recovery time is quick.

We also offer I.V. Sedation, or “twilight sleep,” which is a deeper level of sedation some patients prefer. With either sedation option, you are constantly monitored by a trained staff member and sophisticated equipment throughout your procedure.

New technology also enhances patient comfort. For example, in my office I use a dental laser for certain procedures. This eliminates the drill sound and even speeds recovery by sealing tissues during the procedure. Dental lasers also minimize the elimination of natural tooth structure by pinpointing precisely the areas for treatment. This is ideal for the preparation of fillings and inlays as well as gum recontouring and uncovering implants ready for final tooth attachment.

I believe that the confidence of a beautiful, healthy smile enhances one’s quality of life and everyone should feel that achieving this is within reach. Hopefully, advancements in dental techniques and technology will create a new generation who live their lifetimes with all their natural teeth.

If you have dental fear or know someone who does, suggest they arrange a no-cost consultation by calling 1-866-9-Smiles. This conversation could be the first step to a terrific smile!

Dental Adjustments May Rid Constant Headaches

Very few of us have teeth that are perfectly aligned. Various flaws in development can leave many people with crooked or overlapped teeth or jaws with abnormalities. Too, improperly designed crowns and fillings can also contribute to an uneven bite.

Yet, bite misalignment is one of the main sources of tension headaches. A tension headache causes a tight feeling or dull pain in the temples, forehead or on the back of the head.

A misaligned bite prevents the jaw muscles from completely relaxing. This constant strain on the muscles leads to an overproduction of lactic acid, which is a metabolic by-product. This leads to head pain.

Temporo-Mandibular Joint (TMJ) Disorder can cause severe headaches as well. These headaches may also include pain in the jaw joints, neck and shoulders.

This jaw joint is located in front of the ear and connects the lower jaw to the skull. Because the TMJ is involved when we talk, eat and yawn, it takes lots of stress throughout a normal day. However, those who grind their teeth at night or clench typically have bite misalignment in addition to TMJ Disorder.

In many cases, a misaligned bite can be adjusted with simple reshaping of some teeth. Other bite adjustments, including orthodontics, may be needed to achieve normal jaw function and teeth alignment. We offer Invisalign for basic tooth realignment in cases where orthodontics is necessary for adults.

To learn more, call 1-866-9-Smiles for a free Consultation.

Fees For A ‘Good Deal’ On Dental Implants Can Be Deceiving

A friend shared with me recently that he’d seen a billboard advertising “Dental Implants – $999!” As a Dentist who provides all phases of Dental Implants, this worries me. Those drawn initially to this kind of “good deal” aren’t always getting the whole picture.

Although the dentist using the billboard may be qualified in the diagnosis, placement and restoration of Dental Implants, this price is a little deceiving. What is not made clear is the fact that $999 only covers each implant, which is the portion placed into the jaw bone to serve as a tooth root replacement. Doubtfully included in this price is the “abutment” needed to support the teeth, nor the fees for the replacement teeth. Other fees that may not be included are sedation, operatory suite fee, etc.

For the most successful outcome for your money, arrange a consultation and let’s discuss your individual needs so you’ll have a true expectation of cost. The key to getting the most for your investment is having  treatment done right the first time — the ultimate bargain!

For more information, call toll free 1-866-9-Smiles, or ask for a Free Consultation to personally discuss your situation.

All About Crowns!

A crown (referred to by some as a ‘cap’) is a tooth-shaped cover placed over a tooth that is broken, cracked, fractured, worn or decayed. Crowns are necessary to protect teeth that have fillings that make up too much of the tooth. A crown is also useful in saving a cracked or fractured tooth (assuming the crack does not extend below the gum line) and used to hold a bridge in place. For esthetic reasons, crowns can improve the appearance of a smile, covering misshapen or discolored teeth.

Crowns are made from various materials; some being stronger and more appropriate for back teeth. Front teeth or those visible in your smile are typically made of porcelain, giving a beautifully natural appearance and even reflecting light as a natural tooth.

To place a crown, a portion of the natural tooth is reshaped to allow the crown to cover it. After the tooth is reshaped, you are fitted with a temporary crown to wear while a dental lab constructs your permanent crown. This temporary will look and feel comfortable during this brief time, which typically is a couple of weeks.

Temporary crowns are not designed to last for a long time and the adhesive used to hold them in place is designed so the temporary crown dislodges easily when it is time for the final crown’s placement.

Once the dental lab has created your final crown to our specifications of shade, shape and size, you’ll return to have the temporary replaced with your final crown. This process is less involved than when preparing the tooth. The final crown is secured with a dental adhesive that secures a durable, strong and beautiful tooth.

After your final crown is placed, it will be polished and your bite is checked. This ensures the restored tooth fits properly with adjacent teeth. If needed, some gentle filing may be performed so the crown connects correctly with other teeth in your mouth.

For teeth most visible in a smile, crown lengthening procedures may be suggested to provide a more attractive gum line. This reveals a proper amount of tooth when smiling. It also gives an even, natural gum line over teeth for a balanced, attractive appearance in a smile.

During crown lengthening, we typically use a laser to remove excess gum and bone tissue to expose the proper amount of each tooth. A dental laser is an exceptional tooth for this as it seals remaining gum tissue as it removes the excess. This eliminates bleeding and speeds the healing process.

Crown lengthening procedures give a beautiful smile that is flattering to your overall facial features. This is especially true for people who have a “gummy smile,” when too much gum tissue is revealed above teeth in a full smile.

Although sensitivity after a crown is placed is rare, a tooth with its natural nerve center may initially be sensitive to cold. If this sensitivity continues for a month or more or becomes painful when biting down, you may need another bite adjustment.

In some cases, a root canal is necessary. Should this be needed, today’s root canals are highly comfortable and less involved than those joked about in the past. With today’s techniques and technology, root canals are surprisingly simple procedures.

Remember, although a crowned tooth is protected from decay, the gums surrounding it are not. To keep your gums healthy, we often suggest a high-fluoride gel to use each night. Additionally, a crown does not protect you from gum disease. Be highly committed to a thorough oral hygiene regime at home, including daily flossing.

Your best smile is one you love! Call 1-866-9-Smiles and ask for a Free Consultation to discuss yours!