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Monday, June 5, 2023

Diabetes and your dental health: How your diet can affect your teeth

When diabetes is not controlled properly, high glucose levels in saliva may create problems that lead to an increased risk of tooth decay.

Your teeth are covered with plaque, a sticky film of bacteria. After you eat food that contains sugars or starches, the bacteria react with these sugars to release acids that attack tooth enamel. This can cause the enamel to break down and may eventually result in cavities.

Brushing twice a day with fluoride toothpaste and cleaning between your teeth with floss or an interdental cleaner helps remove decay-causing plaque.

Plaque that is not removed can eventually harden into calculus, or tartar. When tartar collects above the gumline, it becomes more difficult to clean thoroughly between teeth. This can lead to chronic inflammation and infection in the mouth.

Because diabetes reduces the body’s resistance to infection, the gums are among the tissues likely to be affected.
Periodontal diseases are infections of the gum and bone that hold your teeth in place. Patients with inadequate blood sugar control appear to develop periodontal disease more often and more severely, and they lose more teeth than those who have good control of their diabetes.

Because of the lower resistance and longer healing process, periodontal diseases often appear to be more frequent and more severe among persons with diabetes.

You can help reduce these risks through good maintenance of blood sugar levels, a well-balanced diet, good oral care at home and regular dental checkups.

Monday, May 22, 2023

The Future of Dental Implants: Advancements and Innovations

Dental implants have come a long way since their introduction in the 1960s, and advancements in technology continue to improve the implant process and patient outcomes. Here are some of the future developments we can expect in the field of dental implants:

3D printing technology: 3D printing technology has already revolutionized many industries, and dental implant technology is no exception. With 3D printing, implants can be created with greater precision and accuracy, resulting in better fitting and longer-lasting implants.

Digital dentistry: Digital dentistry is already making waves in the field of dentistry, and it is expected to transform the dental implant process as well. Using advanced software and imaging technology, digital dentistry can improve the accuracy of implant placement, making the process faster and more efficient.

Nanotechnology: Nanotechnology involves the use of incredibly small particles to create materials and devices with unique properties. Researchers are exploring the use of nanotechnology in dental implants to improve their strength, durability, and bio-compatibility.

Smart implants: Smart implants are implants that can monitor and report on various aspects of oral health, such as bite force, temperature, and pH levels. These implants could provide valuable information to dentists and patients, allowing for more proactive oral health care.

Bioprinting: Bioprinting involves the creation of biological tissue using 3D printing technology. Researchers are exploring the use of bioprinting to create artificial teeth, gums, and bone tissue for use in dental implant procedures.

With these advancements and innovations, the future of dental implants looks bright. Patients can expect faster, more accurate, and longer-lasting implant procedures, as well as improved monitoring and care for their oral health.

Monday, May 8, 2023

How dentures can replace your smile

If you’ve lost all of your natural teeth, whether from gum disease, tooth decay or injury, complete dentures can replace your missing teeth and your smile.

Replacing missing teeth will benefit your appearance and your health.

Without support from the denture, facial muscles sag, making a person look older. You’ll also find it harder to eat and speak – things that people often take for granted until their natural teeth are lost.

There are various types of complete dentures.

A conventional full denture is made and placed in the patient’s mouth after the remaining teeth are removed and tissues have healed which may take several months.

An immediate complete denture is inserted as soon as the remaining teeth are removed. The dentist takes measurements and makes models of the patient’s jaws during a preliminary visit. With immediate dentures, the denture wearer does not have to be without teeth during the healing period.

Even if you wear full dentures, you still must take good care of your mouth. Brush your gums, tongue and palate every morning with a soft-bristled brush before you insert your dentures to stimulate circulation in your tissues and help remove plaque.

And even if you wear full dentures, it’s important to visit your dentist regularly to maintain your overall oral health and get early warning of serious issues such as oral cancer.

Monday, April 24, 2023

Why dry mouth can be a problem and what to do about it

Your saliva plays an important role in your oral health and reduced saliva flow can lead to health problems.

Reduced saliva flow can lead to a dry mouth and this is a common problem among older adults.

It can be caused by various medical disorders and is often a side effect of medications such as antihistamines, decongestants, pain killers and diuretics.

Dry mouth can be associated with various problems such as a constant sore throat, burning sensation, problems speaking, difficulty swallowing, hoarseness or dry nasal passages.

Drying irritates the soft tissues in the mouth, which can make them inflamed and more susceptible to infection. Without the cleansing effects of saliva, tooth decay and other oral health problems become more common.

So, if dry mouth is not treated, it can damage your teeth.

Without adequate saliva to lubricate your mouth, wash away food, and neutralize the acids produced by plaque, extensive decay can occur.

Your dentist can recommend various methods to restore moisture. Sugar-free candy or gum stimulates saliva flow, and moisture can be replaced by using artificial saliva and oral rinses.

Monday, April 3, 2023

What will it be like living with dentures?

People who are new to wearing dentures naturally have many questions about how their life will change.

New dentures may feel awkward for a few weeks until you become accustomed to them. The dentures may feel loose while the muscles of your cheek and tongue learn to keep them in place.

During this time, it’s not unusual to experience minor irritation or soreness. You may find that saliva flow temporarily increases.

As your mouth becomes accustomed to the dentures, these problems should diminish.

Dentures can be made to closely resemble your natural teeth so that little change in appearance will be noticeable. Dentures may even improve the look of your smile and help fill out the appearance of your face and profile.

Eating will take a little practice. Start with soft foods cut into small pieces. Chew slowly using both sides of your mouth at the same time to prevent the dentures from tipping. As you become accustomed to chewing, add other foods until you return to your normal diet.

Continue to chew food using both sides of the mouth at the same time. Be cautious with hot or hard foods and sharp-edged bones or shells.

Initially you may also find that wearing dentures changes how you speak. Pronouncing certain words may require practice. Reading out loud and repeating troublesome words will help. If your dentures “click” while you’re talking, speak more slowly.

You may find that your dentures occasionally slip when you laugh, cough or smile.

After your dentures are fitted, you’ll have a few follow-up appointments with your dentist to take care of any initial issues and to answer any questions you have.

Monday, March 20, 2023

Common Orthodontic Problems and How to Fix Them

Orthodontic problems are common and can range from mild to severe. Here are some of the most common orthodontic problems and how they can be fixed:

  • Crowding - Crowding occurs when there is not enough space in the mouth for all the teeth to fit properly. Braces or Invisalign can be used to align the teeth and create more space.

  • Overbite - An overbite occurs when the upper teeth overlap the lower teeth too much. Braces or Invisalign can be used to correct the bite and align the teeth.

  • Underbite - An underbite occurs when the lower teeth protrude past the upper teeth. Braces, Invisalign, or surgery may be needed to correct the bite.

  • Crossbite - A crossbite occurs when the upper teeth do not properly align with the lower teeth. Braces, Invisalign, or a palatal expander can be used to correct the bite.

  • Open Bite - An open bite occurs when the upper and lower teeth do not touch when the mouth is closed. Braces, Invisalign, or surgery may be needed to correct the bite.

  • Protruding Teeth - Protruding teeth occur when the upper front teeth stick out too far. Braces or Invisalign can be used to correct the alignment.

  • Impacted Teeth - Impacted teeth occur when a tooth fails to emerge from the gum line or erupts in the wrong position. Surgery may be needed to correct the problem.

If you are experiencing any of these orthodontic problems, it's important to consult with an orthodontist for evaluation and treatment options. With the right treatment, you can achieve a healthy, beautiful smile and improve your oral health and overall wellbeing.

Monday, March 6, 2023

Holistic approaches to treating TMJ disorders

TMJ (temporomandibular joint) disorders are a common problem that can cause pain, discomfort, and limited mobility in the jaw. Holistic dentistry offers a range of natural approaches to treating TMJ disorders that focus on addressing the root cause of the problem and promoting overall wellness.

One holistic approach to treating TMJ disorders is through craniosacral therapy. This gentle therapy involves applying gentle pressure to certain points on the head, neck, and jaw to release tension and restore balance to the craniosacral system. This can help alleviate pain and discomfort in the jaw, as well as improve overall relaxation and wellbeing.

Another holistic approach to treating TMJ disorders is through acupuncture. This traditional Chinese medicine practice involves inserting fine needles into specific points on the body to restore balance and promote healing. Acupuncture can help relieve pain and inflammation in the jaw, as well as improve overall energy flow and wellbeing.

Holistic dentists may also recommend dietary changes and nutritional supplements to support TMJ healing. For example, a diet rich in anti-inflammatory foods such as leafy greens, nuts, and fatty fish can help reduce inflammation and promote healing. Supplements such as magnesium and omega-3 fatty acids can also support healthy joint function and reduce inflammation.

Finally, holistic dentists may recommend stress-reducing techniques such as meditation or yoga to help alleviate TMJ-related tension and improve overall wellbeing.

Holistic dentistry offers a range of natural approaches to treating TMJ disorders. By addressing the root cause of the problem and promoting overall wellness, holistic dentists can help patients achieve optimal TMJ health and wellbeing.