Dental Articles for Individuals

Dental Articles for Individuals

Maintaining Dental Health with Diabetes

Person checking somebody sugar levels with a meter

Did you know that if you have diabetes, your risk of oral health problems might be higher? But don’t worry; there are some easy steps you can take daily to support the strength of your teeth and gums. With the right strategy, you’ll be able to maintain that lovely smile for years to come, so check out the tips below to get started.

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Pregnancy and Oral Health

Pregnant lady setting down looking at camera

Your body goes through a lot of changes while you’re pregnant. Could these changes affect your oral health? Or can your oral health affect the health of your baby? Get all of the answers you need below.

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Do Your Teeth Really Need a Lot of Calcium?

Pouring a glass of milk

Calcium: you know you need it for strong bones, but do you also need it to keep your teeth strong and clean? It turns out that, yes, you do!

Here’s some information on why your teeth crave calcium, and how this vital nutrient can help you maintain that beautiful smile.

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Does My Emotional Health Affect My Dental Health?

Lady pumping her fist in celebration of her exercise goal being met

We all know that emotional stress can wreak havoc on your body and undo all of the hard work that you’ve put into being strong and healthy. But does the mind-body connection extend to your teeth? Could the stress of your deadlines, relationships, and other daily struggles be causing your oral health problems? The answer is yes!

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Causes of “Dry Mouth” and How to Relieve It

Lady covering her mouth with her hand

The fancy word for “dry mouth” is xerostomia, and this is a condition that’s characterized by a lack of saliva throughout the mouth. Basically, the salivary glands stop producing the normal amount of saliva, leaving the mouth dry and uncomfortable.

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How Dental Issues Can Detect Other Health Problems

Lady in dentist chair having her teeth looked at

You thought that getting your teeth cleaned regularly was just to take care of your oral health, but the truth is your dentist could be the first one to notice that something is amiss in another part of your body.

What goes on in your mouth can be very telling when it comes to the state of your overall health, as there are several dental issues that can alert you to other problems, including those listed below.

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Links between smoking and gum disease

There has always been a significant link between smoking and gum disease. According to a new study at Ohio State University, smoking causes the body to turn against its own helpful bacteria, leaving smokers more vulnerable to gum disease, and tooth decay. Smokers suffer from a much higher rate of oral disease than the non smoking population. Research shows that cigarette smoke wipes out good bacteria in the mouth making the tissue much more susceptible to attack from bad bacteria. The mouth is an interesting environment full of both good and bad bacteria. The mouth develops what is called a bio-film which plays host to these bacteria. If the good bacteria keep getting wiped the bad tends to thrive and that is where oral health problems begin.

In a recent study researchers at Ohio State University took oral sample of bio-film from 15 smokers and 15 non smokers after a series of annual cleanings. The researchers found that with non smokers disease associated bacteria was largely absent. In contrast the smokers in the group started colonizing harmful pathogens within the first 24 hours. It took much longer for smokers to form a stable microbial community. When it did become established it was much more pathogen rich than the bio-film in the mouth of non smokers. Researchers found that smokers also tend to have more cases of red and swollen gums (gingivitis) because the body is mounting defense against the increased risk of infection. Left untreated this can lead to the irreversible form of bone loss called periodontitis.

Researchers are advising dentists that they need to treat the oral health needs of smokers much more aggressively. It starts with making the patient aware of the need to promote a healthy bio-film in the mouth after cleanings. It should also evolve into more dentists becoming involved in recommending smoking cessation programs. This hasn’t been the role of the dentist in the past but more and more of them are beginning to take an active role.

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Dental Warning Signals - Dental Problems - Gum Disease Warning Signs

Most people don’t think of their mouth as a source of disease. So what if I have bleeding of the gums or I offend because of bad breadth? Both of these conditions are indicators of a disease process and they should be checked by your dentist. In fact, if your dentist or dental hygienist isn’t checking your gums at each of your dental visits;  it’s time to look for a new dentist. The fact is that our mouths contain so many different forms of bacteria that it is literally a launching pad for disease in general. These bacteria will cause bad breadth, sore gums, bleeding when brushing and eventually the loss of teeth.  It is a proven fact that gum disease can provoke heart disease, stroke, diabetes and may worsen osteoporsis. Gum disease is esentially a silent killer. Do not ignore it because more than your teeth may go away because of this disease.

 

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Dental Expense - Gum Disease - Emergency Room Dental Care

Each year, more than 85,000 emergency-room visits are due to gum and periodontal problems, a new study finds. These visits cost more than $33 million a year.

Harvard researchers did the study. They used information from 24 states. It covered visits to hospital emergency rooms in 2006. In that year, 85,036 people visited an ER because of gingivitis, periodontal disease or receding gums. The average cost of this type of ER visit was $456. About 1 in 5 visitors was a child. Two-thirds of visitors had some form of insurance and a family income below $47,000 a year.

Just over half of the visits were for gingivitis. This is the mildest form of gum disease. Another 45% were for the more serious form, periodontal disease. In all, 1,167 people were admitted to the hospital. The average cost of a hospital stay was $15,248.

People with Medicare were more likely to be admitted to the hospital than younger people with private or public health insurance or no insurance. Medicare covers people age 65 and older.

People with certain other significant health conditions were more likely to be admitted to the hospital. The most common of these conditions were high blood pressure, chronic (long-term) lung disease, diabetes and depression.

People with severe or dangerous periodontal conditions also were more likely to be hospitalized. This includes people with abscesses, which are bacterial infections in the gums. Some abscesses can be life-threatening if not treated.

Less than half of American adults visit a dentist at least once a year. People who do not see a dentist regularly are more likely to visit the ER with dental problems.

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