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Sunday, May 24, 2020

Dental Implants: A Permanent Tooth Replacement To Consider

Below is an excerpt from an article found on colgate.com

One of the most notable technological advances in dentistry has to be the development of dental implants. Prior to their launch, the only options available to people who had lost a tooth were bridges or dentures. Dental implants offer an attractive and comfortable solution for those who have lost a tooth to decay or injury, providing a permanent replacement option that looks and feels like a real tooth.

Advantages of Dental Implants

Because a dental implant feels and looks like a normal tooth, it can do wonders for a patient's self-esteem. Many people who were shy about smiling due to a space from a lost tooth feel perfectly comfortable after a dental implant. Beyond the aesthetics, a dental implant also makes it easier to eat and speak, since a titanium post secured directly in the jaw holds the implant in place. Thus, an implant doesn't come loose like a denture. Dental implants also benefit general oral health since they do not have to be anchored to other teeth, like bridges.

Dental Implant Success Rates

Dental implant success can depend on where the missing teeth are located, but the average success rate is more than 95 percent, according to the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (AAOMS). Because the implant penetrates the jaw bone and gum, certain people may not be a good fit for the procedure, such as those who smoke or suffer from diabetes. Your dentist will be able to evaluate whether dental implants are right for you.

Caring for a Dental Implant

Good oral health habits are required for the implant to be a success. Teeth must be flossed and brushed and regular dental visits should be made. It should be noted that most insurance companies do not cover the cost of a dental implant, and it can cost between $1000 to $2,000 per tooth and there is an additional cost for the crown that is attached to the dental implant. If you are missing a tooth and believe a dental implant might be the right solution for you, start by consulting your dentist.

To read the entire article visit colgate.com

Palm Beach Smiles 
Michael Barr, DDS
COSMETIC & FAMILY DENTISTRY
650 W. Boynton Beach Blvd, Suite 1- Boynton Beach, FL 332426
(561) 736-2377
http://palmbeach-smiles.com/

Friday, May 15, 2020

Hormones and Dental Health: What Every Woman Needs to Know

Below is an excerpt from an article found on mouthhealthy.org

Your weight. Your mood. Your sex drive. Your dental health. There’s one thing that can make all these aspects of your health go haywire — hormones. 

You may be surprised to learn that hormone surges may make you more vulnerable to gum disease. Here’s why: More female hormones (estrogen and progesterone) cause more blood to flow to your gums, which causes them to become more sensitive and “overreact” to anything that may irritate them. “Women are more sensitive to the presence of plaque and bacteria around the gums when the hormone levels are high,” says ADA dentist Dr. Sally Cram. “This can cause your gums to become inflamed, swell and bleed. If left untreated, ongoing inflammation in the gums can also lead to bone loss around the teeth and eventual tooth loss.”

Your hormones are a fact of life, but gum disease not so much. It’s actually preventable and reversible in its early stages. So what’s a woman to do? Start by paying extra attention and taking good care of your mouth during these five times in your life.

Puberty
Raging hormones can leave a teenage girl’s gums red, swollen and bleeding. (In some cases, the gums’ overreaction to plaque may cause gums to actually grow bigger.) Some teenage girls may also find themselves developing canker sores, which usually heal on their own.

The best treatment? Prevention. “Brush twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste, floss once a day and see your dentist regularly,” Dr. Cram says. “Removing plaque and bacteria thoroughly every day can reduce the inflammation, discomfort and bleeding.”  

Your Period
You may not notice any change in your mouth in the days before your period. (If fact, most women don’t). But if you have swollen gums, bleeding gums, canker sores or swollen salivary glands, hormones may be to blame. These symptoms should subside after your period stops — but if they don’t, then the increased bleeding by your gums is signaling something else. Talk to your dentist if you have questions about how your monthly cycle and apparent health of your gums are related.

Stay on top of your daily dental health routine, and if you find you have more sensitivity than usual before or during your period, schedule cleanings for about a week after it ends.  

Using Birth Control Pills
Inflammation may have been a side effect for women taking birth control in the past, but today there’s good news for your gums. The levels of estrogen and progesterone in today’s birth control prescriptions are too low to cause any issues with your gums, according to a February 2013 review in the journal Periodontology 2000.  

Still, it’s important make sure your health history forms at the dentist are up to date if you are taking birth control. Here’s why:
  • Your dentist may need to write you a prescription, and some medications can make your birth control less effective. 
  • If you’re having a tooth removed, you may be more at risk for a painful complication called dry socket. According to the June 2016 Journal of the American Dental Association, women who use oral contraceptives are nearly twice as likely to experience dry socket compared to those who do not. Of 100 women who took birth control, 13.9 experienced dry socket. Only 7.54 of 100 women who did not take birth control had this complication.

Pregnancy
During pregnancy, your body is in hormonal hyper drive. Some women find they have developed pregnancy gingivitis — a mild form of gum disease that causes gums to be red, tender and sore. It is most common between the second and eighth months of pregnancy, and you can help keep it under control through good daily habits. “Stay on top of your brushing, stay on top of your flossing and be meticulous about the care of your entire body,” says ADA dentist Dr. Alice Boghosian. 

Visiting your dentist during pregnancy is incredibly important — and absolutely safe. In fact, your dentist may recommend more frequent cleanings during your second trimester and early third trimester to help control gingivitis. If you notice any other changes in your mouth during pregnancy, see your dentist. 

Menopause 
Menopause is a huge change in a woman’s life and a woman’s mouth, including altered taste, burning sensations in your mouth and increased sensitivity. “They’re all related to hormones,” Dr. Boghosian says.

Still, there are two critical changes to be aware of: dry mouth and bone loss. “Saliva cleanses the teeth and rinses cavity-causing bacteria off your teeth,” Dr. Boghosian says. “When you have dry mouth, your saliva flow decreases and you’re more at risk for cavities.”

Talk to your dentist if your mouth is feeling dry. “If dry mouth is a problem, suck on ice chips or sugar-free candy, drink water or other caffeine-free drinks and use an over-the-counter dry mouth spray or rinse to help reduce the dryness,” Dr. Cram says. “Your dentist may also recommend prescription strength fluoride toothpaste that helps reduce the risk of tooth decay.”

What you eat can also make a difference when it comes to dry mouth. Avoid salty, spicy, sticky and sugary foods, as well as and dry foods that are hard to chew. Alcohol, tobacco and caffeine can also make dry mouth worse. At night, sleeping with a humidifier on in your room can also make a difference.

Losing bone in your jaw can lead to tooth loss. “The decreased estrogen that occurs with menopause also puts you at risk for a loss of bone density,” Dr. Boghosian says. “Signs of bone loss in your jaw can be something as simple as receding gums. When your gums recede, more of your tooth is exposed and that puts more of your tooth at risk for decay. And if your mouth is dry, that’s a double whammy.”

To help reduce your risk of bone loss, work with your dentist or physician to make sure you’re getting the right amount of calcium and vitamin D, don’t smoke and avoid excessive alcohol consumption.

To read the entire article visit mouthhealthy.org

Palm Beach Smiles 
Michael Barr, DDS
COSMETIC & FAMILY DENTISTRY
650 W. Boynton Beach Blvd, Suite 1- Boynton Beach, FL 332426
(561) 736-2377
http://palmbeach-smiles.com/

Tuesday, May 5, 2020

Erupted Tooth: Pericoronitis Symptoms and Treatment

Below is an excerpt from an article found on crest.com

What is Pericoronitis?

Since wisdom teeth come in during late adolescence, pericoronitis is a form of gum disease that usually affects those between the ages of twenty and forty. Often the wisdom teeth are not able to come out fully due to a lack of room in the mouth, leading to a partially erupted tooth. The partial tooth eruption then leads to inflammation and infection of the soft tissue which surrounds it.

Symptoms of Pericoronitis
Symptoms often vary from one individual to the next and can occur chronically or acutely.
Those suffering from chronic or reoccurring pericoronitis may experience:
  • Mild discomfort around the affected area
  • Dull toothache
  • Bad breath
  • A foul taste in the mouth
Symptoms last for 1 to 2 days but continuously reappear without proper treatment.
Acute pericoronitis is usually caused by poor oral hygiene. This is relatively common since the wisdom teeth, located toward the back of the mouth, can be difficult to clean with manual brushing alone. Symptoms may include:
  • Pus discharge from affected area
  • Pain when swallowing
  • Extensive pain making it difficult to sleep
  • Swelling of the face
  • Swollen lymph nodes under the chin
  • Fever
Acute pericoronitis symptoms usually last about three to four days.

Treatment for Pericoronitis

The condition can be hard to treat due to the gum flap which has resulted from the partially erupted tooth. Often, the issue won’t go away completely until the tooth fully erupts from the gum line, or the tooth/soft tissue has been removed.

For mild cases, a dentist may recommend the following treatments:
  • Comprehensive cleaning
  • Removing any food, debris, or residue trapped inside the gum flap
  • Draining of the pus to reduce inflammation
  • Rinsing with a fluoride mouthwash containing an antibacterial agent such as CPC (Cetyl-pyridinium chloride) or salt mixture 
  • Antibiotics to manage the infection 
As with any form of gum disease, you should always follow a thorough oral care routine of brushing twice a day and flossing at least once. If your symptoms persist, see your dental professional right away. It is crucial to treat any sign of infection as soon as possible before it spreads to other areas of the mouth and jawline.


To read the entire article visit crest.com

Palm Beach Smiles 
Michael Barr, DDS
COSMETIC & FAMILY DENTISTRY
650 W. Boynton Beach Blvd, Suite 1- Boynton Beach, FL 332426
(561) 736-2377
http://palmbeach-smiles.com/

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Re-opening After COVID / Corona - A message from Dr. Michael Barr

As you know, dental offices were shut down during the "Corona crisis."  Unfairly so, but that's another topic.  :)

The good news is that we're coming back!  Here's a message from Dr. Michael Barr about how we keep you safe and smiling.


Friday, April 24, 2020

Sleep Apnea and Snoring

Below is an excerpt from an article found on mouthhealthy.org

Sleep apnea is a common and serious sleeping disorder that happens when your regular breathing is interrupted during sleep. Snoring is common among patients with sleep apnea but not all snorers have sleep apnea.

There are two main types of sleep apnea:

  • Obstructive sleep apnea. The more common form, it is the result of blocked airflow during sleep, usually when the soft tissue at the back of the throat collapses while you sleep. Health factors, such as obesity may contribute.
  • Central sleep apnea. Results from a problem with how the brain signals the breathing muscles. The airway is not blocked, instead the brain fails to signal the muscles to breath. This type of sleep apnea can occur with conditions such as heart failure, brain tumors, brain infections, and stroke. 

Sleep apnea can affect anyone at any age, although men are more likely to develop the disorder. The risk is also greater for those:

  • over 40
  • overweight
  • with large tonsils, large tongue or small jaw
  • with a family history of sleep apnea
  • with a nasal obstruction due to a deviated septum, allergies or sinus problems.

If left untreated, sleep apnea can result in a number of health problems including:

  • high blood pressure
  • stroke
  • heart failure, irregular heartbeat and heart attack
  • diabetes
  • depression
  • worsening of ADHD.

Sleep apnea can be treated. There are several options:

  • Adjusting sleeping habits. This may mean simply not sleeping on your back
  • Continuous positive air pressure (CPAP). This is a device which improves breathing while you sleep. The device supplies air through the nasal passages and the air pressure keeps the airway open while sleeping.
  • Oral appliances. Certain oral devices can shift and support the jaw to prevent the airway from collapsing. Research shows that oral appliances can successfully prevent sleep apnea in some mild to moderate cases.
  • Surgery. According to the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine upper airway surgery may be recommended when other treatment options are unsuccessful in eliminating the symptoms of sleep apnea. Depending on the location and nature of the airway obstruction, the procedure may be minimally invasive or more complex. It may be necessary to remove the tonsils or other parts of the soft palate or throat.
If you think you have sleep apnea, make sure to speak with your physician or dentist for more information and possible evaluation.
To read the entire article visit mouthhealthy.org

Palm Beach Smiles 
Michael Barr, DDS
COSMETIC & FAMILY DENTISTRY
650 W. Boynton Beach Blvd, Suite 1- Boynton Beach, FL 332426
(561) 736-2377
http://palmbeach-smiles.com/

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Leukoplakia: Why do you have white gums?

Below is an excerpt from an article found on crest.com

Leukoplakia: What You Should Know
Leukoplakia is an oral disease where white or gray patches show up on or around the gums, inside of the cheeks, on the bottom of the mouth, and sometimes on the tongue. These patches are the mouth’s reaction to irritation of the sensitive mucous membranes in the mouth.
If you’ve seen these patches in your mouth, you should make an appointment with your dentist or doctor. They can help identify what’s causing it as well as help you treat it.

What Causes Leukoplakia?

Outside of knowing that leukoplakia is the body’s reaction to irritation inside the mouth, there isn’t a specific cause that scientists have identified. However, there are some triggers that can make it more likely.
  • Long-term tobacco usage (the most common trigger)
  • Long-term alcohol usage
  • Broken or ill-fitting dental appliances, fillings, or crowns
  • Injury from jagged or broken teeth 
  • Underlying diseases like oral cancer or HIV/AIDS

What Are The Symptoms of Leukoplakia?

White or gray colored patches on your gums or tongue, the inside of your cheeks, or bottom of your mouth are a sign of leukoplakia. These patches may be flat or irregularly textured, and can be thickened or hardened in some places. Leukoplakia isn’t usually painful, but it can be sensitive to touch, heat, irritation, and spicy or acidic foods. Unlike some other oral diseases, leukoplakia can’t be wiped or brushed away.
There is also a second kind of leukoplakia called “hairy leukoplakia.” In this variety, the patches are usually on the sides of the tongue and take on a fuzzy appearance.
In some cases, both types of leukoplakia are also accompanied by raised, red lesions, which can be a sign of other diseases.

How to Treat Leukoplakia

The best way to treat leukoplakia is to remove the source of irritation that’s causing it, either by stopping or reducing tobacco and alcohol usage or fixing dental appliances. It’s a good idea to address these issues with the help of your dentist or doctor, since they may want to run tests to rule out underlying illnesses. You will definitely need to see them in the case of hairy leukoplakia since an antiviral medication is required. And though leukoplakia usually heals on its own, you may have to have oral surgery to remove the patches.

To read the entire article visit crest.com

Palm Beach Smiles 
Michael Barr, DDS
COSMETIC & FAMILY DENTISTRY
650 W. Boynton Beach Blvd, Suite 1- Boynton Beach, FL 332426
(561) 736-2377
http://palmbeach-smiles.com/