Category Archives: Bad Breath

Marijuana Use May Increase Risk For Periodontal Disease

Cannabis or medical marijuana has been said to be a beneficial treatment for pain, seizures and spasms. As its use widens, researchers are finding new ways to utilize this now-legal substance in appropriately prescribed doses.

While there is a debate as to side effects of its use, many researchers feel there is too little data along those lines. For instance, insufficient data exists regarding some claims that cannabis exposure in children and adolescents may cause impaired brain development or lead to mental illness.

However, there are a number of studies showing undesirable side effects when it comes to the oral health of frequent marijuana users. In one, as part of the Centers for Disease Control’s 2011-2012 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, study participants who used cannabis one or more times for at least 12 months had more symptoms of periodontal (gum) disease than other participants. (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/05/170524152634.htm)

This increased propensity for gum disease has also been shown in a long-term study of nearly 1,000 New Zealanders. In that study, people who smoked marijuana for up to 20 years had more gum disease even though other health factors were no worse than those of non-smokers.

For decades, it has been known that the harmful chemicals of cigarette smoke were toxic to the soft tissues of the mouth. A study is also underway to determine the risk factors of e-cigs, or vaping, which users claim is a safer method of smoking. However, the argument has been that chemicals are easily absorbed by the moist tissues in the mouth and, therefore, the potential for detrimental side effects is greater.

Regardless of your use or non-use of cannabis, it is wise to know the signs and symptoms of gum disease. These include tender gums that bleed easily when brushing, receded gums, gums that darken in color from a healthy pink to red, persistent bad breath, and pus pockets that form on gums at the base of some teeth.

Not only is gum disease the nation’s leading cause of adult tooth loss, the bacteria of periodontal disease has been linked to serious health problems. It has been shown that the infectious bacteria of gum disease can enter the bloodstream and cause inflammatory reactions elsewhere in the body.

The inflammatory triggers associated with gum disease bacteria have been linked to heart disease, stroke, memory loss, preterm babies, some cancers, impotency, diabetes and arthritis. As more research is being conducted, a growing number of health problems are showing links to this potent bacteria.

If you have symptoms of gum disease, seek treatment at your earliest convenience. Gum disease only worsens without treatment, resulting in more treatment time and expense. Call 586-739-2155 to schedule.

Vitamin C And Your Smile

I have always been health conscious and committed to a balanced diet. However, there was no other period in my life that I was more focused on what I put into my body than during my pregnancies,. Like most moms-to-be, I was very careful about my food choices and took a pre-natal vitamin to supplement what my diet may have lacked.

Today’s busy adults are not always diligent about eating a healthy diet that provides adequate fiber, protein, vitamins and minerals. Many eat too fast, not chewing our food properly for the digestive process to begin. Too, most of us do not drink enough water.

To supplement what we may not get in our diets, many adults take a multi-vitamin.  While vitamins bolster your overall health by making sure you’re getting the elements you need, remember that your smile needs an ample supply as well.

According to the Journal of Periodontology, consuming at least 180 mgs of vitamin C a day gives your gums and teeth a healthy boost. Vitamin C is an anti-inflammatory that uses collagen to bind cells to build connective tissues – beneficial to gum tissues. Vitamin C has even been shown to increase bone regrowth, helping to restore healthy teeth.

Want to get your C the natural way? Good sources of vitamin C are coconut water, citrus fruits, broccoli, red peppers, brussel sprouts and tomatoes.

If you aren’t getting sufficient vitamin C through your diet, look for non-acidic alternatives available over-the-counter. These forms of vitamin C come in powder or chewing gum. We prefer you avoid most chewable vitamin C products, however, since they can be highly acidic. This level of acidity can damage tooth enamel, leaving you susceptible to decay.

Keeping your gums healthy is not only necessary for maintaining good oral health. Studies now show that the bacteria of gum disease can enter the bloodstream through tears in gum tissues. As it travels throughout the body, it can trigger inflammatory reactions. This has been linked to heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, some cancers, preterm babies, diabetes, arthritis and impotency.

Signs of gum disease are tender gums that bleed when brushing, swollen gums, gums that deepen in color, receded gums and persistent bad breath. Gum disease will only worsen without treatment and is the nation’s leading cause of adult tooth loss.

Keeping your mouth healthy means you enjoy fresher breath and helps you avoid periodontal (gum) disease and cavities. In addition to a healthy, balanced diet and vitamin supplements, your 6-month dental cleanings and exams give you added support.

If you have symptoms of gum disease, call promptly so treatment can be scheduled without delay. Or, if you haven’t had regular dental cleanings, call 586-739-2155 to schedule.

Men’s Oral Health Can Impact Sex Life

A study published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine revealed that men in their thirties with severe gum disease are 3 times more likely to have erection problems.

This comes after previous research revealed that periodontal disease may be linked to heart disease, which is a common cause of erectile dysfunction. Although there are no claims that one disease causes the other, the association is thought to be related to inflammation brought on by gum disease bacteria.

These findings are valid reasons that men should take an active role in the health of their teeth and gums before other areas of the body are affected. The Centers for Disease Control & Prevention estimates that nearly half of American adults have periodontal disease. Of that, over 56% of men have periodontal disease, compared to just over 38% of women.

Periodontal health has also been associated with other areas of men’s health, including prostate health, heart disease, impotence and some cancers. For example, research has found that men with a history of gum disease are 14% more likely to develop cancer than men with healthy gums – 49% more likely to develop kidney cancer, 59% more likely to develop pancreatic cancer and 30% more likely to develop a blood cancer.

Men can help to protect their overall health by keeping their oral health at an excellent level. It is especially important to watch for symptoms of gum disease, which include gums that bleed when brushing, sore or swollen spots on gums, persistent bad breath, and gums that are red rather than a healthy pink color.

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, call toll free 866-9-Smiles for an examination as soon as possible. Gum disease does not improve without treatment.

When Mouth Is Dry, Oral Bacteria Run Rampant

Hot, parched, arid, dry… words that should not be used to describe the inside of your mouth. However, it doesn’t take much to dry a mouth out, and some of the ways this can occur may surprise you.

First, let’s discuss why a dry mouth is a problem, other than it just feels bad. Saliva is your mouth’s natural cleansing agent. It serves as a rinse that removes food particles from the mouth. Combined with brushing and flossing, good saliva flow helps to keep bacteria levels under control.

When saliva flow is compromised, oral bacteria are able to reproduce and multiply quickly.  As bacteria accumulate, a sticky film forms on teeth and gums from this buildup. As bacteria coat the interior of your mouth, bad breath begins.

If this film (known as plaque) is not removed daily, it can hardened into a concentrated mass of oral bacteria. This hardened form of bacteria is commonly referred to as tartar, or calculus. Tartar attaches to teeth and eats away at tooth enamel and gum tissues.

Oral dryness is one of the biggest influences in developing gum disease. Even though poor oral hygiene is a key factor when it comes to bacteria overload, dry mouth is a common contributor because it has many causes.

Common drying factors include smoking, alcohol, spicy foods, caffeine (coffee, colas, chocolate), and side effects of some medications. Other drying causes may surprise you. In addition to mouth breathing (most often from snoring and sinus problems), some illnesses or health conditions can lead to frequent mouth breathing.

Aging is another common factor as our bodies produce less oral moisture in our senior years. People who have Sjogren’s Syndrome or are undergoing treatment for HIV or cancer are more susceptible to dry mouth.

So, how do you avoid having a dry mouth (and the subsequent bad breath and oral health risks associated with it)? First, be committed to a thorough oral hygiene regimen at home. This includes twice daily brushing (at least two minutes per time), daily flossing, limiting caffeine and having 6-month dental cleanings and exams. These visits are designed to remove tartar buildup that has accumulated between visits BEFORE damage can occur.

Rather than reach for a soft drink, choose bottled water instead. Most colas contain caffeine, which actually dehydrate your system rather than moisten it. Along with the sugar contained in most colas, you’ve got a recipe for costly dental problems.

Also, consider using an oral rinse to replenish moisture if your mouth is frequently dry. Certainly, DON’T smoke or use other nicotine products.

It is also important to be proactive when dry mouth becomes an ongoing problem. While oral bacteria can lead to gum disease, cavities and tooth loss, research has also found it is an inflammatory trigger for health problems elsewhere in the body.

Studies have found a correlation between oral bacteria and heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, diabetes, arthritis, pre-term babies, memory loss and even impotency. Obviously, oral bacteria is potent stuff.

If you don’t think oral bacteria is a problem, notice just how quickly the sticky film of plaque can form in the brief time between brushing in the morning and at night. Now, imagine the damage these reproducing organisms can do without the continual cleansing action of saliva.

Oral Bacteria Are Destructive Organisms. Oral Dryness Supports Their Reproduction.
Oral Bacteria Are Destructive Organisms. Oral Dryness Supports Their Reproduction.

Remember, oral bacteria are living organisms. This means they eat and produce waste – in your mouth! YUCK! That image, in itself, should be good incentive to keep oral bacteria levels to a minimum!

Rather than deal with dry mouth problems that can require expensive and time consuming treatment, let’s work together to help you prevent these problems in the first place.

Call 586-739-2155 to arrange an exam. Or, ask for a free consultation to begin. This will allow you to meet us and have your questions answered in a no-cost, no obligation conversation.

Pancreatic Cancer Research Shows Links To Periodontal (Gum) Disease

Over the past few decades, scientific studies have focused increased attention on how periodontal (gum) disease has connections to our whole health. And, rightly so.

As research has become more focused, links have been found between infectious oral bacteria and a growing list of serious health problems. These include heart disease, arthritis, diabetes, stroke, high blood pressure, preterm babies, impotency and more.

The potent bacteria of gum disease can travel through the body by entering the bloodstream through tears in weakened tissues. It is now known that it can trigger inflammatory reactions that are related to the development of the conditions mentioned above.

Recently, studies have added to that list, revealing that periodontal disease bacteria is a risk factor in the development Microscopeof pancreatic cancer. While this has been suspected based on the results of previous studies, one particular, long-term study focused on how the risk exists.

The study included over 350 adults who had DNA analyzed (through saliva samples) and eventually developed pancreatic cancer. Researchers compared the saliva DNA samples of this group to a similar number of adults who remained healthy.

For true comparisons, adjustments were made in both groups for variations in age, race, sex, body mass, use of alcohol, smoking and being diabetic. To eliminate pre-existing factors that could influence statistical outcomes, participants who developed pancreatic cancer within two years or less from the time their DNA samples were taken were omitted.

Using findings from previous research along these lines, this particular study closely scrutinized two types of oral bacteria pathogens. Researchers found that one pathogen was far more prevalent in the saliva of participants who developed pancreatic cancer with a 59% increased risk of developing the deadly cancer. Just as alarming was that the second pathogen was shown to increase this risk by 50%.

Because pancreatic cancer is not commonly diagnosed until it is in advanced stages, it has a deadly track record. Of those who are diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, less than 10% will still be living in five years.

Obviously, this infectious oral bacteria is nothing to take lightly. When you consider its ability to create inflammation elsewhere in the body with devastating (and even deadly) results, the health of your gums should be a top priority.

Symptoms of periodontal disease include tender gums that bleed when brushing, persistent bad breath, gums that are sore and swollen, gums that deepen in color and pus pockets that form at the base of teeth. In latter stages, teeth will loosen and require removal. Even though gum disease is the nation’s number one cause of adult tooth loss, still, nearly half of the adults in the U.S. have some form of it.

Periodontal disease begins without obvious warning signs. By the time symptoms begin, it is often well underway. Unfortunately, many people assume seeing blood in the sink is a sign that they are doing a good job when brushing. Too, because gum problems are not visible (being concealed inside the mouth), they are easier to ignore than conditions that can be easily seen.

When gum disease is not treated, it continually worsens. As research continues to reveal, however, the destruction of periodontal disease bacteria doesn’t just affect your smile. Your overall health and well-being are at risk as well.

What can you do to protect your smile AND your overall health? First, have a thorough examination to determine the presence of periodontal disease. If it exists, we’ll recommend treatment to restore your mouth to a healthy state. We will also create an effective regimen to follow at home to keep your smile healthy between visits.

You can also begin with a no-charge, no obligation consultation appointment. Call toll free 1-866-9-Smiles. During this time, I’ll answer your questions and explain how you can enjoy a healthy, confident smile affordably and comfortably.

Can A Healthy Smile Protect Your Heart?

Bacteria in our bodies is not always a bad thing. For example, certain bacteria in the gut actually enhance the process of digestion and help to keep the digestive system operating efficiently.

However, some bacteria is not good. When too much bacteria invade the body, the immune system becomes overburdened. This is why an untreated cut can become infected.

The body’s natural defense response, white blood cells, aren’t always able to conquer infection at certain levels. This is when your doctor may prescribe an antibiotic – to give the immune system added reinforcements.

Periodontal (gum) disease is an infection in the mouth. This is where oral bacteria have amassed to the point that the immune system cannot manage infectious growth. While gum disease destroys tissues in the mouth and the structures that support teeth, this infectious bacteria doesn’t always stay confined to the mouth.

The bacteria of gum disease can enter the bloodstream through tears in weakened gum tissues. As it travels throughout the body, it can trigger inflammatory reactions elsewhere. Over the years, the bacteria of periodontal disease has been linked to everything from stroke to preterm babies to diabetes.

One of the first correlations between oral bacteria and other serious health problems was found in heart disease. An excellent explanation of how this occurs can be found in Harvard Medical School’s newsletter: Harvard Health Publications.

http://www.health.harvard.edu/press_releases/heart-disease-oral-health

They explain the sequence of events as: “In people with periodontitis (erosion of tissue and bone that support the teeth), chewing and toothbrushing release bacteria into the bloodstream. Several species of bacteria that cause periodontitis have been found in the atherosclerotic plaque in arteries in the heart and elsewhere. This plaque can lead to heart attack.

“Oral bacteria could also harm blood vessels or cause blood clots by releasing toxins that resemble proteins found in artery walls or the bloodstream. The immune system’s response to these toxins could harm vessel walls or make blood clot more easily. It is also possible that inflammation in the mouth revs up inflammation throughout the body, including in the arteries, where it can lead to heart attack and stroke.”

Through numerous studies and years of research, we now know that your oral health is closely related to your overall health. By achieving and maintaining a healthy smile, you’ll be doing your body good!

If you are experiencing any of the following symptoms of gum disease, please know that it will only worsen without treatment. Common signs are: gums that bleed easily when brushing, tender gums, gum recession, frequent bad breath, gums that darken in color from a healthy pink to red, and pus pockets that form near the base of some teeth.

Gum disease is also the nation’s leading cause of adult tooth loss. And, studies have shown that the loss of natural teeth compromises the digestive process, social confidence and one’s lifespan.

Don’t delay care. Make sure you are current on your twice-a-year dental exams and cleanings and be committed to your at-home oral hygiene regimen. Twice daily brushing and daily flossing is necessary to keep oral bacteria at a manageable level.

Ready for a clean mouth that supports your overall health? Call toll free 1-866-9-Smiles for more information about an examination and cleaning. Or, ask to begin with a no-cost consultation.

Don’t Let Those Holiday Parties Compromise Your Smile

The coming holiday season is traditionally a time to gather with friends and family. Food is often the centerpiece of these gatherings, with cocktails opening many of the events. When it comes to your smile, certain precautions can keep you from having greater risk for cavities, bad breath and gum disease.champagneclink

Let’s begin with beer, wine and other alcoholic beverages. Alcohol has a drying effect on oral tissues, which means that saliva flow is not as efficient at rinsing bacteria out of the mouth. The more bacteria in your mouth, the faster they reproduce. This leads to bad breath and can progress to gingivitis (an initial stage of gum disease). When sugary mixers are added to alcohol, you up your risk for developing cavities and gum problems even more.

Although many people feel wine is a healthier choice, it isn’t beneficial when it comes to your smile. Not only can red wine can stain teeth, white wine has a tint and can contribute to discoloration.

Wine is also highly acidic. In the mouth, this acid mixes with digestive acids produced each time you eat or drink. This acidic double whammy can erode the protective shell of enamel on teeth, which ups your risk for cavities. This acid level is so high that it can soften tooth enamel within just ten minutes of consuming wine.

HELPFUL HINT: To minimize potential risks to your smile, ask for a glass of water and take a couple of gulps about every 10-15 minutes with your cocktail. Let the water sweep over the teeth before swallowing to dilute the acid buildup. Or, slip away to the restroom and swish with water after each beverage.

Now, let’s move on to hors d’ouevres and the nibbling that can go on for hours. The holidays are filled with delicious ‘finger foods’ that are easy to pop in the mouth as you mingle. As mentioned prior, every time you eat or drink, an acid attack begins in your mouth. This acid remains at a high level for 20-30 minutes.

This means that an acid attack began when you put that first sausage ball in your mouth and will continue – without a break – whenever you add in another goodie every 20 or so minutes. If the bite is sugary or carbohydrate-laden, the acid becomes even more potent.

HELPFUL HINT: Try to consume your nibbles in a short amount of time rather than draw eating out for hours. Fill a cocktail plate and enjoy it – and be done with nibbling for the evening. Consider loading up on the veggies and dip moreso than the candied pecans and cheese straws! (This is also better for your waistline!)

Because eating and drinking put teeth at risk for 20-30 minutes after consumption, wait that long before brushing. With enamel in a softened state, the abrasiveness of tooth paste combined with the scrubbing motion of a toothbrush can wear away enamel. Wait before brushing to give these acid levels time to subside.

Tooth enamel, once worn away, is gone forever. Do everything you can to protect it for the sake of your smile. Also, if you’ve experienced staining, ask us about our in-office Zoom 2 whitening system. This provides a high level of whitening in just one, brief appointment (and also makes a terrific gift for a smile you love)!

Smile with confidence as you enjoy the holidays with others! Call toll free 1-866-9-Smiles to discuss whitening or cosmetic enhancements. We can also help you achieve a healthy mouth for fresher breath as you prevent problems from occurring in the first place. Begin with a free, no obligation consultation.

Be Fresh-Breath-Ready For Holiday Gatherings

As we enter the holiday season, many of us find it’s a busy time of gatherings with friends, family and co-workers. These events provide wonderful opportunities to catch up in close conversations we often don’t have a chance to enjoy at other times of the year.

We’ve all been in these situations where we wondered if our breath was fresh. And, most of us have also been in conversations where the other party was in dire need of a Tic Tac!

While none of us want to be remembered for bad breath, having fresh breath all the time can be a challenge. A tuna salad sandwich at lunch, several cups of morning coffee, or waking up in the morning aren’t breath-friendly. However, with some proactive measures, you can find yourself with far less anxiety in close conversations.

In a nutshell, bad breath occurs due to oral bacteria. Bacteria are living organisms that thrive on food particles in the mouth and bits stuck between teeth. As bacteria reproduce and accumulate, they form a sticky film known as plaque that coats the teeth and gums. If not removed through brushing, plaque hardens into calculus, a cement-like mass of bacteria that attacks tender gum tissues.

As oral bacteria growth progresses, the gums become inflamed. They are tender and bleed easily when brushing.  One of the symptoms of gum disease is persistent bad breath. Brushing, chewing gum and using breath mints will mask it for very brief periods. However, the odor exists because oral tissues are being destroyed in the mouth. Until this ceases, having fresh breath is a fruitless battle.

Dry mouth is another factor when it comes to bad breath. Saliva is your mouth’s natural rinsing agent and washes bacteria away on a continual basis. Without adequate saliva flow, oral bacteria are able to reproduce at a more rapid rate.

Causes for dry mouth include smoking, certain medications, some health conditions, snoring, and breathing through the mouth. Saliva flow is also reduced by the aging process. Consuming alcohol and caffeinated beverages also have drying effects on oral tissues.

When you feel your mouth is dry, the ideal response is to drink water. Not only does water support your oral health, it helps keep your body hydrated so it can function more efficiently. Chewing sugarless gum can also trigger saliva flow. Oral rinses are also available over-the-counter, which help replenish oral moisture.

tongueA tremendous source of oral bacteria is actually the tongue. With millions of tiny grooves, oral bacteria take up residence in the warm, moist haven the tongue offers. Consider using a tongue scraper or brushing the tongue with your tooth brush to lower the bacteria levels in your mouth. Be sure to reach the back of the tongue where the majority of oral bacteria exist.

The best way to ensure your breath is fresh as often as possible is to begin with a clean slate. Schedule an exam and cleanings so we can remove buildup in the mouth and reduce the bacteria levels to a minimum. We will also check for signs of gum disease and make recommendations to halt its progress if found.

Once your mouth is ‘dental office clean,’ your at-home care will help you keep it in great shape. Brush twice a day for at least two minutes, floss daily, and use a tongue scraper or brush your tongue. Drink plenty of water and avoid sugar-laden foods and beverages. Swish after eating or drinking (especially coffee, colas or wine) to counteract drying effects.

Go into this holiday season with a confident smile and fresh breath. Call toll free 1-866-9-Smiles for an appointment. In addition to feeling comfortable in close conversations, you’ll also be helping to prevent problems in your mouth brought on by oral bacteria overload.

Smoke? Lecture-Free Ways To Keep Your Smile Healthy

If you smoke, the last thing you probably want to hear is a lecture on why you should quit. Chances are, you know a number of reasons why. We understand that smoking is addictive and not easy to quit. As a matter of fact, it’s very difficult.

The Centers For Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) reports that “more people in the United States are addicted to nicotine than to any other drug. Research suggests that nicotine may be as addictive as heroin, cocaine, or alcohol.”

The majority of smokers who try to quit do so without assistance, though only 3 – 6% of attempts to quit without assistance are successful. So, whether you plan to quit or are content with your habit, we want your smile to stay in good condition. And, it can with proper care and regular check-ups.

First, let’s deal with a dire issue. Because smoking (as well as smokeless tobacco) is responsible for nearly 90% of oral cancers (lips, mouth and throat), it is paramount that you have an annual oral cancer exam. We do these as part of your six-month cleaning and exam appointments.

Oral cancer has one of the worst survival rates of all cancers because symptoms rarely emerge until it is at rampant stages. Before symptoms are obvious to you, we may be able to detect signs of oral cancer visually and by touch.

Smoking is drying to oral tissues, which creates an environment where oral bacteria are able to actively thrive and reproduce. Periodontal (gum disease) begins with persistent bad breath, tender gums and gums that bleed easily when brushing.

As gum disease progresses, pus pockets form at the base of teeth. Teeth loosen as oral bacteria attack the bone and tissues that support tooth roots. Eventually, these teeth will require removal.

The bacteria of periodontal disease has been linked to heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, diabetes, arthritis, preterm babies, some cancers and impotency. This occurs because the potent bacteria can enter the bloodstream through tears in weakened gum tissues, causing inflammatory triggers elsewhere in the body.

Smoking also gives you an increased risk of bad breath, increased plaque and stained teeth. By keeping oral bacteria in your mouth under control, you can avoid the treatment time and expense for gum disease, cavities and whitening. (Our Zoom WhiteninZoom_Logo copyg system works wonders for our smoking patients, by the way!)

Be aware that smokers have longer healing times following extractions, gum treatment and oral surgery. When healing takes longer, there is a higher risk of bacteria settling into incised tissues. It is a fact that smokers have a higher risk of implant failure.

The best way to avoid many of the problems mentioned above is to keep oral bacteria under control. How do you do that?

First, be very committed to your at-home oral hygiene routine. Brush twice a day for at least two minutes each time. Use a fluoridated toothpaste and soft to medium bristle tooth brush.

Brush your tongue after your teeth. This dislodges a vast amount of bacteria from the tongue. Be sure to get to the back area of the tongue, where most bacteria are embedded. Gently run the brush over the roof of the mouth, under the tongue and inside of the cheeks before rinsing.

If you use a mouthwash, check the label to make sure yours contains no alcohol. Alcohol dries out oral tissues, which makes bacterial growth easier. And, to combat dry mouth, consider using a mouthwash especially formulated to replenish oral moisture. These are available over-the-counter at most drug stores. Be consistent in using these products.

Floss daily. I can’t stress this enough. If flossing seems awkward, ask our hygienists to help you with your technique. We have a flossing video on our web site you may want to check out: http://www.banrbarbatdds.com/videos.php#flossing_tips

You may want to try one of the water or electronic flossers now available. There are also floss holders that make the process easier for some people. Just be sure to avoid ‘popping’ the floss between the teeth onto tender gum tissues. This can cut into the gums, leaving them vulnerable to oral bacteria.

Be sure to keep your 6-month check-ups. These cleanings and exams remove buildup that can occur between visits and help you avoid problems before they occur or catch others while still small.

Drink lots of water — not coffee, tea, colas, sports drinks or energy drinks — most contain caffeine, which is very drying to the mouth.

Limit sugar and carbohydrates. These are oral bacteria super boosters. Instead, opt for crunchy fruits and vegetables, raw nuts and cheese.

We don’t lecture our patients. It is our job to help patients have the very best smile they can regardless of our own preferences and opinions. If you smoke, we care just as much about your smile as our patients who do not. Know that we are here for you regardless of your needs or goals.

If you’re past due for a dental check-up and cleaning, call 586-739-2155. Let’s get you in so you can have a clean slate with your renewed commitment to a healthy smile!

 

Diabetic? Improve Your Health With A Healthy Smile!

Diabetes is defined as “a disorder of the metabolism causing excessive thirst and the production of large amounts of urine.” It is a metabolic disease characterized by the body’s inability to properly secrete or manage insulin. This results in abnormal metabolism of carbohydrates, proteins and fats. Diabetes is a leading cause of death due to vascular complications attributed to the disease.

The prevalence of diabetes has increased dramatically over the past few decades and is expected to triple in the next decade. The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared diabetes to be at a pandemic level. A report published by the U.S. National Library of Medicine through the National Institutes of Health states that diabetes is “a growing public health concern and a common chronic metabolic disease worldwide.” 

The most common types of diabetes are type 1 (insulin dependent) and type 2 (non-insulin-dependent). According to the American Diabetes Association, the majority of diabetics suffer from Type 2 diabetes with initial symptoms emerging after age 45. Early indications of this disease are bad breath and bleeding gums.

For those in the medical and scientific field, seeing early signs of diabetes in the form of oral problems is typical even though the general public rarely associates one with the other. Periodontal disease is an inflammatory condition that can trigger inflammation elsewhere in the body. Other inflammatory diseases (such as high blood pressure, arthritis, and coronary artery disease) have been linked to gum disease by numerous research studies.

Not only is periodontal disease said to be the 6th greatest complication of diabetes, research has shown that one tends to trigger the other. Gum disease has been found to occur more frequently and with greater severity in diabetics with poor glycaemic control. Proper management of diabetes for controlled glucose levels has been shown to be helpful in preventing or treating periodontal disease.

Symptoms of gum disease include gums that bleed when brushing, frequent bad breath, gum recession that expose dark tooth root sections) and tender and swollen gums. As gum disease progresses, gums will turn red in color, pus pockets will form at the base of teeth and teeth will loosen. Eventually teeth will need removing.

While it is important for all to be aware of  the signs or gum disease, diabetics, especially, should be as proactive as possible when it comes to their oral health due to their  particular vulnerability to inflammation in the body. For our patients who have diabetes, we advise having a dental check-up every 3-4 months.

If you have diabetes, please arrange a periodontal examination at your earliest convenience. Gum disease will only worsen without treatment. And remember, gum disease is the nation’s leading cause of adult tooth loss.

Delayed care often results in more treatment time and greater expense. Call toll free 1-866-9-Smiles if you have questions or to begin with a free Consultation to discuss your symptoms and oral health.