Dental

It’s National Children’s Dental Month!

Dental Awareness Health Month

You know something is deemed important when there is a day, week or month dedicated to awareness for it. With that being said, it just so happens that February has been deemed National Children’s Dental Month and a campaign is brought to you by the American Dental Association. This month-long observance is brought to light for the purpose of helping the public understand the benefits of good dental health to children and the adults in their lives.

National Children's Dental Health observances began with a one-day event in Cleveland, Ohio and a one-week event in Akron, Ohio during February 1941. The ADA held the first national observance of Children's Dental Health Day on February 8, 1949. By 1955 it became a week-long event. Later, in 1981, the program was extended to a month-long celebration known today as National Children's Dental Health Month. For 2016, the campaign slogan brought by the ADA is called “Sugar Wars”. The idea is to bring awareness about the damage of sugar on teeth.

Today, we’re going to give you a little information, based on medical data, about how sugar plays a vicious role in dental decay and what you can do to prevent it.

How Cavities Develop: According to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, a persons mouth has hundreds of bacteria living inside, some helpful and others harmful. The harmful bacterias can feed on sugars you eat to create acids that destroy tooth enamel (the protective barrier on the outside of your teeth). Without the protection needed, teeth are left vulnerable to cavities.

How To Battle Cavities: Fight off the bacteria can be done using good, daily oral hygiene practices. Brushing your teeth with fluoride toothpaste, using mouthwash and flossing regularly can help in the fight against cavities, however; cutting down on your sugar intake is also a key factor. Eating more fibrous vegetables, chewing sugar free gum and drinking fluoride water are also good ways to keep your teeth cleaner.

Finally, visiting the dentist regularly for teeth cleanings is recommended. Our Edmond dentist is here to help in this regard. If you would like to make an appointment or you have any questions, please click here.

Oklahoma Mission of Mercy

Why I Participate with the Oklahoma Mission of Mercy

OKMOM: Oklahoma Mission of Mercy

First you may be asking yourself what the Oklahoma Mission of Mercy is, right? Good question! OKMOM is a two day event held near the start of each year somewhere in Oklahoma where anyone, and I do mean anyone, can come get free teeth cleanings, extractions, fillings, and other dental services. OKMOM focuses on treating patients who are uninsured or wouldn't otherwise have access to dental care and that's why I participate with the Oklahoma Mission of Mercy.

To be able to treat patients who would otherwise be forced to go without is one of the greatest rewards to being a dentist. Each year thousands of Oklahomans in need receive dental care - my colleagues and I work nonstop throughout the event seeing, quite literally, thousands of patients. It is an absolute blast for us to be able to give something back especially when we want to give so much away in our private practices, but unfortunately - running a business costs money. I have done 5 of these events in the past and I will continue to do them as long as I am physically able.

I strongly encourage anyone who is in need of some dental treatment to go to visit the OKMOM website for more information. Not all dental services are offered, so make sure to take a look at the site to see what can and cannot be done. My staff and I will be there working away from 4am - 5pm! All services are first come first serve. There are no eligibility, income or insurance requirements. Get there early! The event this year will be held Friday, February 5, 2016 - Saturday, February 6, 2016 starting at 5:00 a.m. at the Cox Convention Center in downtown Oklahoma City.

Come and see for yourself why I participate with the Oklahoma Mission of Mercy.

Teeth Whitening- Dentist

Want A Whiter Smile? This Dentist Has A Deal For You!

New Year’s Resolutions: Stop smoking and have whiter teeth

January is many things to many people, but more than anything it represents the opportunity to start fresh. Every year resolutions are made to improve upon ways of the past. Seeing the dentist isn’t a resolution many people think about, but having whiter teeth, on the other hand, is something many people do think about. Perhaps you’ve always wanted a beautiful, white smile or your teeth have turned yellow over time. No matter what your reason for wanting a brighter, whiter smile, you’re not alone.

Your tooth color can be affected by many regular habits. A few of them include:

  • Drinking coffee, tea and red wine.
  • Eating foods that cause stains (blueberries, tomato sauce and candy are example).
  • Accumulation of plaque and tartar.
  • Smoking tobacco.

Limiting your intake of food and beverages that cause stains is your best bet if you want whiter teeth. Regular teeth cleanings, at the dentist office, can also help decrease the accumulation of plaque and tartar. At home, teeth brushing and flossing will help you maintain a healthy smile. Overall, one of the most important steps you can take to getting whiter teeth is the elimination of tobacco usage. Smoking isn’t just bad for your health, but it creates long-lasting stains on your teeth.

To become “smoke-free” is also one of the most difficult resolutions to keep. Perhaps, you just need a little bit more incentive.

For this reason, our dentist office is offering you a deal! If you can stop smoking for 3 months (yes, the dental hygienist will be able to tell) then we will give you free, custom bleach trays for your teeth and you get to take them home with you for multiple uses! This is a $340 dollar value that we would be willing to simply give to you.

Want whiter teeth? Want to stop smoking? Now you have a little incentive to stop smoking and get whiter teeth! It’s a win-win.

Call us @ 405-340-0411 to learn more or schedule your visit to the dentist.

dentures

Give The Gift Of Dentures Retained By Implants

See the difference of dentures retained by implants

Thanksgiving just ended and a lot of loved ones enjoyed spending time with each other. In addition, a lot of people had a great time indulging in tasty, culinary delights of the season, but what you may not realize is that some of the elderly crowd may not have had as much fun trying to eat for fear of their dentures falling out. If you have ever had to cut up the meat for your elderly mom or dad, then you know the struggle they deal with on a regular basis.

Have they tried many types of denture adhesives, but they just don’t do the trick? The real issue is that over time, shrinkage in the bone structure in the mouth causes standard dentures to gradually become loose and the glue doesn’t always offer relief. Grandchildren might be stuck with a mental image of grandma pushing her “teeth” out while attempting to remove stuck-on food. It’s an uncomfortable, embarrassing situation for grandma who has to take her teeth out and for guests who have to witness the experience.

There is a better solution; Dentures retained by implants!

Unlike regular dentures that slip out involuntarily, dentures retained by implants give the wearer the ability to choose removal or not! They don’t have to be placed in a glass on the night stand to get clean as they are easily removed for just for cleaning. Easy removal doesn’t mean that they aren’t strongly bonded, however; because the dentures are supported by implants placed in the jaw. The dentures sort of “snap” into place using the anchors for support and they stay put. A person wearing dentures retained by implants can actually talk and eat without their teeth moving!

Would your parents like to avoid repeating the embarrassing teeth-removing process at Christmas dinner? With Christmas right around the corner, a great gift to give your elderly loved ones would be the gift of new teeth and with that you’ll be giving them a reason to smile and so much more.

Call us @ 405-340-0411 if you’d like to know more or to schedule an appointment with the dentist.

 

 

Edmond Dentist- year end benefits

3 Reasons To Visit The Dentist And Use Year End Benefits

See the dentist and take advantage of your dental benefits

This year is speeding to a rapid close and many people will be losing out on their dental benefits. Are you one of them? Imagine for a second that you took a wad of cash out of your bank account for the sole purpose of lighting it on fire. You wouldn’t ever want to do that, of course. So why would you want to waste benefits that you paid for? Here are 3 reasons to visit a dentist and use your year end benefits.

1.) No new deductible: If you have already paid off your insurance deductible for 2015, any additional dental work that you have completed will not require a new deductible payment. It’s important that you take advantage of this benefit and visit the dentist before the new year rolls around, because with the new year a new deductible payment will be needed.

2.) No wasted benefits: Dental services like screenings, x-rays, cleanings and more can all be covered by your dental insurance if you pay premiums. If you’ve done so, then why wouldn’t you want to take advantage of the dental services that are offered and that you have earned? Not only does it make financial sense to avoid wasting money, but you can maintain optimal dental health.

3.) No roll-over: Most dental insurance plans allow for a yearly maximum benefit amount to be used per person. If you haven’t used all of your allotted benefit, it isn’t going to roll-over into the next year. So in a sense, having unused benefits is the equivalent of putting those dollar bills of yours into a large bon fire. Silly, right?

By delaying dental treatment you could create the risk of needing more extensive and more expensive treatments later. To help you maximize your insurance benefits, we would love to schedule an appointment for you to see the dentist. The appointment slots will fill up quickly as many patients try to use up their benefits, so don’t wait too long to schedule your appointment.

Give us a call @ 405-340-0411 to book your dentist appointment, today.

The Impact of Oral Cancer Screening

It has been beaten into your brain, you have heard it so many times you could scream... The American Dental Association recommends you see your dentist twice a year for regular cleanings and check-ups. One of the reasons it is recommended to have regular check up's for your mouth, much like for the rest of your body, is to screen for any abnormalities. The impact of oral cancer screening is just as vital as screening for cancers anywhere else. According to The American Dental Association, 42,000 Americans will be diagnosed with oral and throat cancers this year. The 5-year survival rate of those diagnosed is only slightly more than 64% therefore, when cancer is detected and treated early, treatment-related health problems are reduced. Oral Cancer can range from your lips all the way to back of your throat and everywhere in between. Look inside your mouth and think about all that surface area. As your dentist, I make it a point to look for any signs or symptoms of anything abnormal in your mouth, this does not just include decay in or on your teeth. I am looking for any redness, lumps, lesions and your bite. When I ask you questions about how your mouth is feeling, I am wanting to know if you are having any soreness, tenderness, and swelling. What you may think something that is not that big of a deal, it may be. When I am asking about your family history - though it may seem strange that I am a dentist, as you know, having an idea of what the family's history of illness is can be an indicator in your own body.

 

I encourage that if between your regular visits to your dentist's office you notice anything that seems off, do not hesitate to give your doctor a call. I am sure he/she will be more than happy to schedule an appointment even just to put your mind at ease. Keep in mind there are many things that can stick out to indicate something may be abnormal. According to The American Dental Association, the symptoms of mouth or throat can include:

 

  • A sore or irritation that does not go away
  • Red or white patches
  • Pain, tenderness or numbness in mouth or lips
  • A lump, thickening, rough spot, crust or small eroded area
  • Difficulty chewing, swallowing, speaking or moving your tongue or jaw
  • A change in the way your teeth fit together when you close your mouth

 

Patients over the age of 40 tend to be more at risk of these factors, it has however been found in patients younger than that. Contributing factors can include tobacco/nicotine users of all kinds, HPV has even been associated with certain types of oral cancer. Keeping your mouth healthy with brushing, flossing, fluoride use, regular dental visits, a good diet, and keeping your mouth moist will not only assist in presentation of tooth decay but oral cancers as well.

 

For more information about oral cancers please visit http://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/az-topics/o/oral-cancer or http://www.oralcancerfoundation.org/facts/

5 Reasons You May Need Orthodontics

Orthodontics are not only for teenagers anymore, adults can benefit just as much from orthodontics (braces or clear aligners). The advancements in orthodontics over the years is absolutely astounding. General dentists are even able to take on some cases now. If you have ever wondered about the benefits of orthodontics, here are 5 reasons you may need orthodontics:

 

  1. To improve your overall oral health. Too much crowding or spacing in your teeth and create little harbors of plaque and bacteria which we already know can lead to decay, gum disease and bone loss. Straightening your teeth will help to eliminate some of these issues with regular brushing and flossing. Maintenance of your oral health and prevent costly and timely restorations in the future.
  2. To relieve discomfort stemming from poor alignment of your upper and or lower jaw. The human body is so intricately connected that even if your bite is off by mere millimeters your body will find a way to compensate in one way or another to feel normal.
  3. To tie directly into the poor alignment of your upper and lower jaw, you may notice that you have an overbite or an under bite.
  4. Reducing a "gummy" smile. Are you embarrassed about having a gummy smile? The only option available many years ago was to due crown restoration on each tooth, not anymore!!
  5. This brings us to cosmetic. Straightening your teeth can add confidence to your smile that you didn't even know you were missing.

 

Braces come in all shapes and sizes anymore. There are traditional or metal braces for more extensive treatments on adults. Metal braces are recommended for adolescents as well because clear aligners such as Invisalign® or ClearCorrect tend to require more discipline with use. Clear aligners allow you freedom to straighten your teeth virtually invisibly. There are also options like MTM® (Minimal Teeth Movements) or Fastbraces® that are much faster than traditional braces. Most offices in your area, dental or orthodontic will offer free consultations allowing you to meet with a doctor to go over all of your concerns and see what options best suite you.

Do You Really Know How To Floss?

Let's face it - flossing is a little tricky. Are you doing it properly? Are you doing it often enough? Are you using the correct flossing instrument? Are you getting sick of your dental hygienist lecturing you at every dental appointment about flossing? The question of the day is do you really know how to floss? I personally always love when I get my teeth cleaned and the hygienist finishes off my cleaning with a good thorough flossing. They are able to get in to all the areas that it seems like I cannot. How am I supposed to fit my hands ALL the way back there??!? I wanted to simply the technique for you at home - so it doesn't seem so daunting.

Step 1: Grab some floss, the ADA recommends about 18 inches. Really just grab enough to be able to use some clean floss after each tooth.

Step 2: Get the floss between the teeth and all the way up to the gum line gently and "wrap" your tooth with the floss. Use an up and down and back and forth (or zig-zag) motion to get all those surfaces.

Step 3: Once all your teeth are squeaky clean, rinse your mouth very well - you did just clean out a lot of bacteria from under your gums.

Easy enough, right? If you are a type of person that struggles with standard floss, there are lots of other options out there to help you achieve your flossing goals and make your hygienist beam with pride at your next cleaning. I she has even offered you a handheld flosser at one of your appointments. Take her up on it next time. The technique with these is similar but it gives you the luxury of not having to struggle getting around those back teeth and hard to reach places. All the major dental companies have created water flossers or air flossers as well. The water and air flossers are easy to use, gentle and incredibly effective. Have a lot of bridge or crown work, maybe even braces? We have floss for that too! Special floss to get around those wires to keep your gums healthy! Remember, flossing is the most effective way to keep plaque out of your gum tissue and off of your teeth in between your dental cleanings. Research your options and start flossing - this way if someone should ask do you really know how to floss? You can say, YES and I have the gums to prove it!

Fluoride, nature’s cavity fighter

Have you ever sat and wondered to yourself, "What is fluoride anyway and why is my dentist all about it?" - Well, I am here to fill you in. Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral found in all water sources without additional fluoridation. Depending on the region you live in the level of naturally occurring fluoride may be different. The mineral itself is renowned for strengthening teeth and helping prevent tooth decay. Fluoride, nature's cavity fighter! According to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR) 92% of adults between 20-64 have had decay in their permanent teeth and 26% of adults the same age have untreated decay. Now, don't get me wrong - these statistics are not simply because people chose not to have fluoride treatments at their dental cleanings or refuse to drink fluoridated water, there are many reasons as to why tooth decay occurs. Fluoride is simply an overlooked good.

Fluoride works by fighting acids in our food and drinks that attack teeth and cause decay. Think of fluoride as D vitamins in your milk - or juice with added calcium, it is simply an added benefit to help protect your very precious smile. The American Dental Association suggests that "for children younger than 3 years, start brushing their teeth as soon as they start to appear in the mouth by using fluoride toothpaste in an amount no more than a smear or the size of a grain of rice. Brush your children's teeth twice a day (morning and night) or as directed by your dentist or physician. For children 3 to 6 years of age, use no more than a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste and brush teeth twice a day. Always supervise your child's brushing to make sure they use the right amount of toothpaste and try and get your child to spit out most of the toothpaste." The ADA also states that "if you have a good chance of getting cavities, your dentist can apply fluoride to your teeth during your dental visit. Your dentist might also tell you to use a special fluoride rinse, paste or gel at home." The ADA is absolutely correct in this, and I practice it here in my office. Why not take advantage of fluoride, nature's cavity fighter. For more information about fluoride or fluoridation head straight to www.mouthhealthy.org/fluoride

Dental Phobia

Did you know that it is estimated that as many as 58% of US adults have some degree of dental phobia? I ask myself constantly where this anxiety comes from - is it from a past dental experience, negative dental propaganda or something much larger. I tend to ask my anxious patients what exactly about dentists or dental offices make them uncomfortable. In older generations I cannot tell you how many times and stories I have heard about their dental phobia stemming from when they were children. Dental insurance was not always (and is still not always) a benefit available to most people and chances are even if you had it, your dentist did not accept it. Most families could not afford regular dental care and would therefore wait until there was a dental emergency before going to see good ol' Dr. Rootcanal (kidding, of course). Prolonging these visits to when someone in the family was in discomfort only made the situation worse. On occasion, a families could not afford the anesthesia used to avoid discomfort, this made for and extremely uncomfortable procedure. If something got too uncomfortable or if the patient would not hold still, some dentists would use a papoose board to strap the patient down. In these unfortunate situations, the patient, usually a child, had no control. Dentists were/are portrayed as cold, calculated and uncaring for shock value in movies and sadly dental instruments were used as torture devices by some very bad people in history. Luckily - our industry has changed, a lot.

The most reliable way to help a patient deal with dental phobia, is to give control back to the patient. We do not confine patient to their dental chair or the operatory. I highly recommend you allow me to treat you in the operatory, but if you need to stop and get up and move around, take a break - you are allowed to do so as often as you may need. Waiting rooms and operatories are designed with a more welcoming, comfortable feel. In-office amenities such as noise cancelling headphones, televisions, and music are available for your comfort. These things will help keep your mind off of the dental room As with most phobias, there are many way to conquer your fear; solutions such as meditation, guided imagery, acupuncture are in my opinion among the more extreme and may not be the answer for everyone. If those aren't for you - gentle sedation such as nitrous oxide (N20 or laughing gas), moderate sedation such as oral medications and total sedation using IV medications (take me to dream land) are always options. Rest assured, we can and will do our best to make you comfortable no matter the degree of dental phobia you may have experienced, and most importantly I will always take the time to listen and provide recommendations.