Thursday, September 16, 2021

Botox And Dental?

What are your thoughts on Botox? Would you get Botox treatment if it meant it could help with specific dental problems?

Check out this article by Perfect Teeth:

"When you think about Botox chances are good you think about a Gen-Xer having it done to maintain their youthful appearance. You wouldn’t be wrong – Botox is by far the most popular cosmetic procedure out there with the American Society of Plastic Surgeons reporting over 7.4 million injections given in 2018.

And now dentists are getting in on the action. Have you heard about this trend of Botox in dentistry? It just might be the next big thing!

What is Botox?

According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, Botox is a drug made from a toxin produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. While it’s the same toxin that causes a life-threatening type of food poisoning called botulism, its use as an injectable paralytic has been FDA approved for cosmetic procedures and more. In fact, it’s now commonly used in small doses to treat a variety of health problems including excessive sweating, excessive blinking, overactive bladder and even migraines.

Botox works by blocking nerve signals that control muscle movement, which makes them unable to contract, temporarily softening the skin around the area that was injected. It typically takes a few hours for results to be seen and they usually last about three months.

Botox in Dentistry

For most people who hear the word “Botox”, they think of wrinkle reducing injections used in cosmetic procedures. While it is true Botox was approved by the FDA for such, it is now expanding in its application due to the nerve blocking benefits it offers. In fact, a trip to your dental office could include your dentist offering Botox.

While some dentists do use Botox for cosmetic procedures, there are many other uses for Botox in dentistry.

  • Treatment of Temporal Mandibular Joint Disorder (TMJ)  
  • Treatment of bruxism (teeth grinding)
  • Reducing a “gummy smile” without surgical intervention
  • Adjustment of lips before or after denture placement or oral surgeries.

Should a Dentist Do Botox?

Botox as a purely cosmetic procedure will likely never be part of a dentist’s repertoire – as their first and primary goal is oral health care. But, because dentists have extensive training on oral and facial anatomy, health and function, some say there is no one better qualified to administer Botox than a dentist.

In fact, some proponents of the use of Botox in dentistry claim dentists are the most qualified, and offer a better experience because they administer oral and facial injections on a regular basis. This makes the injections quick and less painful, because they are done with a skilled hand.

While the use of Botox in dentistry is controversial to some, it seems there may be a place for Botox in dentistry, to help both medically and cosmetically. According to the American Academy of Facial Aesthetics about 10% of dentists are currently trained to administer Botox with more seeking training every day. The American Dental Association even offers Botox training for its members!

Is Botox in dentistry the next big thing? We don’t have a crystal ball, but it’s a trend we envision increasing especially as demand grows and more and more state dental boards support the practice."

Tuesday, September 14, 2021

Unaffordable Dental Expenses for the Elderly - An Editorial

With our volatile economy, things are bad enough, but it is so much worse for those on limited and fixed incomes, and the real travesty is that there is very little help available for those in need of serious dental care. Medical care can be much easier to obtain.
Dental treatment is fast becoming one of the most costly of all areas in the medical industry. Basic restorative treatment is becoming a thing of the past, with dentists and dental specialists opting for the higher end products and procedures. Root canals, crowns and implants are exorbitantly high priced, as are dentures and prosthetic devices. Having worked in the dental industry as long as I have, I'm well aware of the cost of materials vs. the mark-up.  It's ridiculous, and there is no regulatory agency that can help to even out the cost to make it more affordable. In fact, dental specialists are among the highest priced professionals in the country.  The elderly are probably the most affected by this. They are literally forced to spend money they don't have and are finding that there are limited resources to help with the funding of  treatments and procedures, as government based organizations generally will not cover anything other than extractions for adults.
A good Dental Plan can go a long way toward reducing costs for the elderly, but the fact is, sometimes it just isn't enough. Consequently, many elderly dental patients will go outside of the country to places such as Mexico, or will simply go without the care they need, thereby affecting their overall health. 
No doubt we all know of an elderly family member or friend that has had this problem.

So, the question? How long can this continue?  When insurance is of little or no help and money is limited, there must be an alternative somewhere.  Any ideas anyone? 

Thursday, September 9, 2021

Could Antibiotics Worsen Oral Infections?

 Usually, when you have an infected tooth, your dentist gives you antibiotics before any procedure, right?

Well, new research from Case Western Reserve University in Ohio has found that antibiotics kill the "good" bacteria which helps keep the infection and inflammation at bay and can do more harm than good.

Pushpa Panduyan stated "Of course, antibiotics are still needed for life-threatening infections. No question about that. Our bodies have many natural defenses that we shouldn't meddle with," she said. However, needless overuse of antibiotics is not helpful."

"Also, we know there is a definite link between oral health and overall health," she added.

 For the research and results click here!

Tuesday, September 7, 2021

Dental Plans Are Still A Good Option-Even If You Have Insurance!

 I saw an article recently that makes a good argument for Dental Plans! Not directly, of course, but if one considers that dentistry is among the most expensive in terms of healthcare and that there is no regulatory agency that holds dental prices in check, a Dental Plan can be extremely beneficial. Dental insurance companies pay little to nothing and put a cap on your benefits.

Now, when I say Dental Plan, I don't mean the ever growing "in-house" type of plan that some dentists are trying to promote; those will save you very little money overall and if a problem arises...well, where are you going to go? The plan would not be accepted by another facility! No, I'm suggesting a bonafide, BBB accredited discount plan.
Dental plans go far beyond what insurance companies do in terms of savings.  More procedures are covered, there is no limit to benefits, coverage is immediate and there is no waiting 12 months for a large procedure...
Additionally,  any good dental plan can be used as a supplement to an insurance plan.  Once your insurance benefits are exhausted, you can switch over to the dental plan and still receive a benefit. 

Seriously, why would one NOT consider a dental plan? Do your homework, but at least check it out. You'll find that the savings and a small investment for a membership are well worth the effort, especially now, in an uncertain market.  Everyone needs dental work at some point.  Be prepared with a good dental plan.

Don't wait for a toothache!!

Thursday, September 2, 2021

Gum Disease (The Hidden Dangers)

Do you suffer from gum disease? If so, has your dentist explained the hidden dangers if you don't seek treatment?

Take a look at this article "The Hidden Dangers of Gum Disease" from one of our providers Artisan Family Dentistry in Glendale, AZ.

"Gum disease poses a much bigger oral health threat than many people assume. What may start out as inflammation or tenderness can quickly contribute to bone loss and tooth decay.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, tooth decay and periodontal disease (gum disease) pose the biggest threat to oral health today. In fact, gum disease impacts nearly half of adults above the age of 30 and more than 70 percent of people over the age of 65.

Knowing the symptoms and prevention methods along with regular visits to your dentist will help you avoid or treat periodontitis before it gets out of control.

Knowing the Warning Signs

Gum disease develops over time and becomes more severe the longer symptoms go unaddressed. Let’s take a look at how this issue develops.

Gingivitis: This is the earliest stage of gum disease typically caused by inflammation of the gums as a result of plaque. Symptoms include:

  • Red, swollen gums
  • Bleeding gums during brushing or flossing
  • Bad breath

Periodontitis: When gingivitis goes untreated, it will eventually develop into periodontitis. This happens when a pocket begins to form under the gums below the gum line. The result is plaque being trapped that can irritate the gums and even cause bone loss and tooth decay. At this stage, it’s important to seek the treatment of a dentist.

Advanced Periodontitis: This is an advanced stage of gum disease that can cause serious damage and pain to teeth, tissue, and bone. At this phase, teeth can shift and become loose, even fall out. A few other symptoms include:

  • Gums receding severely
  • Deep periodontal pockets
  • Chronic bad breath
  • Gums swell and bleed
  • Advanced tooth decay

Who is Most at Risk for Gum Disease

Age is one factor to consider if you think you may be at risk of developing gum disease. According the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 47 percent of adults aged 30 and older have some form of periodontal disease.

Adults over the age of 65 experience more advanced stages of gum disease, and at a higher rate. The CDC reports 70 percent of adults aged 65 and over suffer from periodontal disease.

Men are also more likely to experience gum disease than women at a rate of 56 percent to 38 percent.

What Are the Risk Factors?

Smoking: Tobacco use greatly increases the likelihood of periodontal disease. It is estimated that more than 64 percent of adult smokers have some degree of periodontal disease.

Hygiene: Poor oral hygiene is a leading cause of periodontal disease. Good habits and regular visits to the dentist will help prevent the onset of gum disease.

Bad Diet: Poor nutritional habits are a leading contributor to gum disease. Foods that are high in sugar, carbohydrates, and caffeine should be minimized.

Medications: Certain medications can contribute to periodontitis. Talk to your doctor and dentist about any medications you are taking. If your prescriptions cause dry mouth, you could be at risk for gum disease.

Prevention and Treatment

Prevention: Good oral hygiene is the best defense against gum disease. Maintain a healthy diet and see your dentist twice a year for checkups and regular cleaning.

Treatment: Speak with your dentist about treatment options for periodontal disease. Laser therapy is becoming a popular option because of the reduced irritation and faster healing times.


If you are showing any of the symptoms of gum disease, it’s important to see your dentist as soon as possible. Treatment will be shorter and less painful if addressed early and can help you avoid further complications such a bone and tooth loss.

Check out our infographic below and learn more about gum disease."

Tuesday, August 31, 2021

Coenzyme Q-10 for Fighting Periodontal Disease

 I am always looking for natural, effective ways to heal the body without the use of drugs.  I found this while searching for a supplement to help heal gum disease.

Coenzyme Q-10 is essential to the body to help build new cells.  It is a component that can reduce inflammation and assist in healing infection. Gingivitis and Periodontitis are bacterial diseases of the gums.  There are lots of ways to prevent and treat gum disease, such as regular cleanings, scaling, root planning and topical rinses. However, for those who prefer a more holistic approach, consider Coenzyme
Here is a link to an article explaining the health benefits of taking a Coenzyme Q-10 supplement.

Always check with your doctor and/or your dentist before taking any supplement, and, as always,
Keep smiling!

Thursday, August 26, 2021

Can Hypnosis Work As An Anesthetic?

 Have you ever been hypnotized? If so, what was your reasoning? Was it to help reduce stress and anxiety? Gain control of past traumas? Or was it for fun during a renaissance festival act?  Whichever your reasoning was, I hope you were able to benefit from it!

But would you ever think that hypnosis would work as a dental anesthetic? If your answer is no, then you need to read the article "You're not dreaming: Hypnosis works as an anesthetic" By Melissa Busch, Dr. Bicuspids' associate editor.

"Hypnosis is a safe, effective, and inexpensive technique that could be used in place of anesthesia during dental procedures, according to a clinical report published on July 28 in the Journal of the American Dental Association.

In the small study, three women successfully underwent dental procedures under hypnosis rather than traditional sedation. The authors believe the report to be the only case series published that evaluates hypnosis as the sole anesthetic for patients in dental settings.

"Hypnosis can be used for sedation in most patients and as a stand-alone technique in those with appropriate hypnotic susceptibility, improving the well-being and safety of patients," wrote the group, led by Dr. Enrico Facco from the department of neurosciences at the University of Padua in Italy.

The technique

To determine whether oral surgery could be performed on patients under hypnosis without sedation, the researchers enrolled three women between the ages of 34 and 49. Two of the women had previous difficulties with medical anesthesia, including an anaphylactic reaction to local anesthetic and a paradoxical reaction to pharmacological sedation.

Prior to their surgeries, the patients underwent two sessions to assess their perioperative risk, level of anxiety, hypnotic susceptibility, and capacity to develop complete hypnotic analgesia.

On the days of their surgeries, the women closed their eyes, concentrated on their bodies and breath, and imagined lying on a tropical island's beach. The authors then induced hypnotic-focused analgesia using the following steps:

  1. They suggested they were administering local anesthetic, while repeatedly touching and rubbing the cheek.
  2. They said local anesthesia caused the sensation on the cheek.
  3. They said the sensation was a sign that the cheek, teeth, and gums were going numb.
  4. They suggested the women not pay attention to the operative setting, including the teeth, gum, and skin.

Within nine minutes, all three patients obtained hypnotic analgesia. The team then successfully performed several procedures on the women:

  • The 34-year-old woman underwent a 15-minute third molar surgery and a 120-minute mucogingival surgery.
  • The 47-year-old woman underwent a 15-minute third molar surgery.
  • The 49-year-old woman underwent a 45-minute procedure to remove a first molar and place an implant, as well as a 120-minute procedure for maxillary bone augmentation plus two implants.

The authors told the patients they could take ibuprofen or acetaminophen for pain, if needed, after the procedures. When they called the patients that evening and the next day, the women said they felt well and did not need to take any medications.

History of hypnosis in medicine

Using hypnosis in the dental office is not a new idea. Before the advent of modern sedatives and analgesics, the medical community successfully used hypnosis in hundreds of surgical procedures, the authors noted. In fact, it was a Scottish surgeon who coined the term hypnotism, which he believed placed a person in a state of sleep or trance.

Despite its reported effectiveness, hypnosis never became very popular in the medical community. Most medical professionals in the 17th and 18th centuries shunned hypnosis for political and cultural reasons. Instead, the medical community focused on finding anesthetics and sedatives for the safe practice of dentistry.

But in recent years, medical professionals, including the authors of this report, have begun revisiting hypnosis as an analgesic due to its lack of side effects. If the findings of this small study are any indication, hypnosis could be used cost-effectively in dental practice and also help physicians better understand and meet the subjective needs of patients, the authors wrote.

"Alone or combined with local anesthetics, sedatives, or both, hypnosis can contribute to achieving the best outcome in terms of a patient's tranquility and full analgesia with the lowest dose of drugs or none at all," Facco and colleagues concluded. "

Would you try hypnosis over general anesthesia?

Tuesday, August 24, 2021

Extra Uses for Toothpaste - Who Knew?

 What is one cheap thing everyone owns (or should own)?  That's RIGHT toothpaste!! Toothpaste contains mild abrasives and detergents mixed with creamy thickening agents which keep your teeth cleans, this can also take place of expensive cleaners.

Here are some things you can clean with toothpaste!

  • Polish Jewelry - Apply a thin film of toothpaste with a soft cloth or toothbrush on the piece of jewelry you wish to polish. Polish, rinse with water and dry.
  • Remove carpet stains - Scrub stain with toothbrush and toothpaste.
  • Clean scratched Cd's - Dab a small amount of toothpaste on the scratch and buff with a cloth, rinse and dry.
  • Spiff up sneakers - Apply a small amount of toothpaste on the sneaker and scrub with a toothbrush.
  • Banish water rings on furniture - Dab a small amount if toothpaste and use a damp cloth to gently buff away the water ring. You may have to repeat this a few times.
  • Clean the inside of water bottles or baby bottles - Scrub the inside using a toothbrush and toothpaste, rinse with hot water.
  • Defog - Apply a small amount of toothpaste to the inside of your mask or goggles and rinse.
*Don't use colored toothpaste or gels, these can leave unwanted stains. All you need is a plain tube of white toothpaste!

Thursday, August 19, 2021

Oral Device To Help Tourette Syndrome?

Do suffer from Tourette Syndrome? You may be in luck! Researchers at Osaka University in Japan have developed a removable oral device that can help adults and children with their tics.

There are many ways to treat tics which include behavioral therapy, medication, and surgery. However, these treatments work differently for each individual person. This is why the researchers at Osaka University decided to develop a custom-made oral splint. This device is similar to mouth guard and retainers but only applied to the back molars, increasing the Occlusal Vertical Dimension. 

According to Jumpei Murakami, author of the study says "Biting down on the device immediately improved both motor and vocal tics in 10 of the 14 children and 6 of the 8 adults that participated in the study." "What's more, these effects were long-lasting. Long-term improvements in motor tics after more than 100 days were especially evident in younger patients when their tics first started."

Osaka University plans to do larger-scaled studies! 

It will be interesting to see the larger study results and how they changed the lives of people who suffer from Tourettes.

Information found here!

Tuesday, August 17, 2021

Temproary Home Remedies For Common Oral Problems

Here are a few ways to treat some dental problems from home, until you can visit your dentist.

Sensitive Teeth:
Cause~ Exposed nerve root.
Treatment~ Lay off whiting treatments, brush teeth a little softer than normal.

Lost Tooth: 
Cause~ Sports.
treatment~ Rinse it with milk and push it back in right away, then bite down gently on a soft cloth or moistened tea bag to hold it in place. Then visit your dentist.

Burned Palate:
Cause~ Hot food.
Treatment~ Try using Kenalog in Orabase, an over-the-counter corticosteroid paste that creates a protective coating on the burn and speeds healing.

Burned Tongue:
Cause~ Hot drink or food.
Treatment~ Rinse your mouth with a solution of 1 teaspoon of salt and a cup of warm water.

Jaw Soreness:
Cause~ Temporomandibular joint disorder.
Treatment~Try sleeping on your side or back with a supportive pillow, instead of facedown.

Canker Sore:
Cause~ Sugary foods/Citrus.
Treatment~ Apply vegetable oil to a cotton ball and hold it against the sore three or four times a day.

Lost Filling:
Cause~Popcorn, Peanuts, Carmel.
Treatment~You can use sugarless chewing gum (chew it first) or soft wax to caulk the hole and reduce the sensitivity until you can visit your dentist.

Gum Pain:
Cause~Gingivitis (gum disease), tobacco use.
Treatment~ You can ease the pain by swishing peppermint tea around your mouth.

Thursday, August 12, 2021

How To Sleep After Wisdom Teeth Removal

Check out this direct reprint of an article by Slumber Yard Team, if you are about to get your wisdom teeth removed! 

"Wisdom Teeth Removal

Almost 85% of Americans need to get their wisdom teeth pulled sooner or later, and boy are we jealous of those who don‘t need to go through the procedure.  It‘s a simple outpatient surgery, but the recovery can be quite grueling.  It can be even worse if you can‘t manage to get a good night‘s sleep.  Sleep is a major factor in recovery, so you can see how this situation can quickly become a downward spiral if you‘re not getting any rest.  The less sleep you get, the more painful the healing process becomes, which makes it harder to sleep — and the cycle continues.

Our Slumber Yard team member Carla actually recently got her wisdom teeth pulled.  When we asked her about her sleep experience post–procedure, this is what she had to say.

“Be prepared to readjust the way you‘re eating because you can basically only have liquids and soft foods like yogurt and pudding.  I tried noodle soup, but I stayed away after I got a noodle stuck in the holes where my wisdom teeth were.  Because you‘re eating differently, it might affect your sleep schedule.  For the first couple of days, I had a migraine from the surgery and an aching jaw, so it made it more difficult to fall asleep.  But the first two days, I did nap a lot.  I‘d say I got around the recommended six to eight hours of sleep over the days.  I‘ve heard from others that they‘ve slept much more, though, especially if your dentist puts you on pain pills stronger than Tylenol.  Yawning hurt for about a month, too, so be prepared for that.”

Wisdom tooth removal is something that most people will encounter in their lifetime.  While everyone‘s experience is different, there are some things that you can expect after wisdom teeth removal.  This guide will teach you some simple tricks and provide expert tips to help ease your recovery and help you sleep better.

How to Sleep Post Teeth Removal

After you get your wisdom teeth removed, it‘s important to be aware of how you‘re sleeping.  Sleep and good rest is important to heal faster, but you can actually prolong your healing process if you‘re not careful.

Take Your Medication

To start, make sure you take any medications your doctor prescribed.¯ This is essential for two reasons:  One, it will help fight off potential infection, and two, it will help you sleep at night if you‘re feeling pain.

Hopefully, your dentist or oral surgeon prescribed you something strong enough to ease the pain, as Carla mentioned earlier.  If not, Ibuprofen or Tylenol will help reduce the discomfort too.  You can also apply an ice pack to your cheek if you have a combination of pain and swelling.

Keep Head Elevated & Choose the Right Position

After you get your wisdom teeth pulled, you‘ll need to keep your head elevated for at least 36 hours at a 45–degree angle, even while you sleep.  The elevation will help you recover faster because blood vessel tone (constriction of your blood vessels) and blood volume tend to increase near the wound when you‘re lying flat.  This can cause the wound to throb and lead to increased pressure and bleeding, inhibiting healing.  Keeping your head at an angle also helps to reduce swelling, so you don‘t look like a chipmunk.

Remove Gauze From Mouth This next tip might go without saying, but you‘ll want to remove the gauze in your mouth before you sleep, so you don‘t accidentally choke on it.  Your dentist should tell you when you have the OK to take it out, which is normally around 30 minutes after surgery.

Follow Aftercare Instructions

In general, make sure you also schedule time to rest after your surgery, and not just when you‘re supposed to go to sleep at night.  If you strain yourself too hard after wisdom teeth removal, the healing process will only be more painful, meaning less restful sleep.  So take a few days off work, lay low, and sleep whenever you get the opportunity.

If you find it hard to fall asleep, try setting the temperature in your room between 60–67 degrees to lower your body temperature, and turn off all the lights in your room.  You should even keep your phone face down so it doesn‘t light up throughout the night.  This ensures you‘re in the perfect atmosphere to fall asleep.

Combatting the Aftermath of Wisdom Teeth Removal

When a wisdom tooth is removed, some common symptoms may occur.  We identify these common symptoms, along with medical advice from Mayo Clinic regarding best treatment practices.

Be sure to contact your doctor should you experience any of the following symptoms:
  • Trouble swallowing
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Excessive bleeding
  • Severe pain
  • Fever
  • Prolonged, excessive swelling that lasts two or more days
  • Pus in or around the socket
  • Numbness or loss of feeling
  • Blood or pus in nasal discharge
Foods to Aid in the Recovery Process and Support Sleep

The foods and beverages that you consume could hasten your recovery process.  These foods and beverages can actually help aid in your recovery from wisdom tooth removal.



Water:  Water is your best friend after surgery, replenishing essential nutrients and giving your body the strength to fight infection.

Ginger ale:  The bubbles and mild flavor can help ease nausea and settle upset stomachs.

Gatorade or Powerade:  These sports drinks are full of vitamins that can help replenish and strengthen your body to fight infection.

Milkshakes:  Everyone loves ice cream, but this guilty pleasure is not so guilty after wisdom tooth removal because the creamy cold of the treat is very soothing during healing.


Alcohol:  You should refrain from alcohol for at least 48 hours immediately following your procedure.

Acidic drinks:  Acidic beverages, such as certain sodas or juices, can cause severe irritation to your wound and hamper healing.

Hot and cold beverages:  Your mouth will be especially tender following surgery, so stick to lukewarm drinks and skip the hot coffees and teas.

Whichever beverages you choose, be sure to avoid using a straw so you do not risk dislodging blood clots or causing further harm to the extraction site.


There are also some foods that can help ease recovery.


Yogurt:  The cool, creamy texture of yogurt makes this healthy treat enjoyable, but the extra vitamins and minerals will also help aid your recovery.

Applesauce:  This sweet treat‘s smooth texture makes it a perfect choice for post–procedure snacking. Plus, the vitamins and minerals, like Vitamin C, will help fight infection and speed up your healing.

Lukewarm soups:  Blended soups like pumpkin, carrot, or tomato soup are rich in nutrients, while bone broth adds extra hydration.

Eggs:  Scramble some eggs for a soft, easy–to–eat meal full of protein and Omega–3 fats to help with healing.


Hard foods:  Hard, chewy foods can put a strain on your extraction site and displace the blood clot.

Spicy foods:  Spicy foods can quickly cause irritation and prolong the healing period.

Crunchy foods:  Foods that easily crumble, like potato chips, can all too easily become stuck in the wound, adding room for infection.

Grains and seeds:  These also can become lodged in your wound and increase the risk of biting the inside of your mouth and adding to your list of ailments.

Additionally, there are also some items that better prepare the body for rest to help you sleep better.
  • Almond milk:  Almonds can agitate your wound, but almond milk is a soothing, refreshing way to provide your body with the hormone melatonin to help improve your sleep.

  • Chamomile tea:  A cup of lukewarm chamomile tea before bed can help fight inflammation and promote better sleep.

  • Tart cherry juice:  This specialty beverage is so effective at improving sleep quality that it is also used to treat insomnia.
Your medical provider can help advise on the best dietary plan for your needs after surgery.

Activities to Pull You Through the Recovery Period

Recovery after wisdom tooth extraction may not be the most fun time, but for many people every day, it is a necessary evil to ensure proper health.  While you are recovering from your procedure, these activities can help keep your mind preoccupied and engaged with fun, entertaining activities that will not put a strain on your recovering body.
  • Movies, audiobooks, and podcasts:  These are easy ways to entertain yourself without putting any strain on your body.  Curl up in front of a TV or grab a pair of headphones to tune into your favorite audiobook or flick.

  • Puzzles:  Puzzles are another low–energy activity that does not require a ton of movement and can be done right from the comfort of your bed.

  • Video Games:  As you begin to feel better, you can check out a new video game for a slightly more intensive experience.

  • Read a book:  This can be the perfect opportunity to catch up on your reading and dive into that new novel you have been pushing off.
Any activities that do not require a lot of motion and can be done from bed can help keep you entertained while waiting for your body to get back to normal.

When Can I Sleep on My Side After Wisdom Teeth Removal?

Unfortunately, you will need to sleep on your back.  Depending on your recovery time, you will need to sleep on your back for around three to seven days.  It is not recommended to sleep on your side or your stomach because it can squish your cheeks, adding extra pressure to the area.  It will also direct more blood to the area via gravity.  We can‘t imagine that it would be very comfortable to sleep with an elevated head while on your stomach or side, either, so try to stick strictly to your back.

If you‘re somebody who isn‘t used to sleeping on their back, try arranging pillows around your head and neck to keep you comfortable and supported.

Best Pillows to Use After Wisdom Teeth Extraction

The right pillow after wisdom teeth extraction can make all the difference in the world for your comfort and could even speed up the recovery process.  Medical experts at Mayo Clinic recommend that patients sleep on their back following wisdom tooth removal.

Back sleepers are best served by a pillow with anywhere from one to four inches of range when compressed.  This keeps the head elevated and reduces neck strain by facing toward the ceiling rather than forward.  The best pillow and mattress for back sleepers depends on a few factors, such as the material you choose.  Pillows are available in several different materials, such as memory foam and latex foam, to meet your ideal comfort level.  Your pillow and mattress firmness is another factor, with a medium firmness often working best for back sleepers.

An extra pillowcase is also a good idea to prevent any blood or fluid stains on your favorite keepsake pillowcase.

Additional Ways to Improve Your Sleep

There are a few other ways to help improve your sleep after wisdom tooth removal.

Modify Your Mattress Outfit

One tip is to modify your mattress outfit by investing in a temporary new bed setup.

Mattress toppers can be a great way to add support quickly.  Instead of upgrading your entire mattress, you could instead choose a mattress topper as a more economical way to accommodate your post–procedure sleep requirements.

You can also use extra pillows to provide added support.  A pillow below your knees can cradle your body for added support and also help minimize back pressure.

Implement a Weighted Blanket for Relaxation

Weighted blankets have increasingly become popular for their highly–touted health benefits.  These blankets typically carry a weight of at least 15 pounds and have been widely reported to provide a soothing calm that promotes better sleep.  Weighted blankets are also used to treat insomnia, anxiety, and stress.

For those who recently had wisdom teeth extracted, the added weight of the blanket does far more than just promoting better sleep.  It can also help other types of sleepers adjust to sleeping on their backs, with the blanket‘s weight gently reminding you throughout the night to remain on your back and prevent any extra, unnecessary movement.  Available in several weights, you are sure to find a version today that works best for your post–extraction sleep.

Final Thoughts

Wisdom tooth extraction is nothing new, but thankfully, there are several things you can do to reduce your downtime and promote faster, better healing.  From soft foods to lukewarm beverages, a few simple changes to your diet can help avoid unnecessary issues and help ensure a quicker recovery.– It is also important to assess what other changes you can make, from activities to even your mattress, so you can enjoy not only a comfortable place to recover but also better sleep each night too."

Tuesday, August 10, 2021

Ogliodontia - An Strange Term but not an uncommon Malady

 This may not be as uncommon as you think!  This malady affects between 1.5 and 10 percent of the population. For clarification, a single missing adult tooth is called agenesis.  Multiple missing teeth - ogliodontia, and when a child is missing his complete set of adult teeth it is called anodontia.  Sometimes this is hereditary, sometimes it is spontaneous.

Baby teeth can begin to fall out as early as age 4, or as late as age 9.  Typically, a child loses his first tooth around age 6.  Permanent teeth begin to appear within a few months.  In some cases, however, a permanent tooth doesn't appear in it's place.  This is why it is so important to take a child for a dental visit and x-rays by age 3 or 4.  X-rays will tell a dentist whether permanent teeth are forming in the jaw normally.  Most kids will  have all of their permanent teeth by age 15.

There are options for kids with missing adult teeth such as orthodontics, implants or even space maintainers if a tooth is forming but not fully erupted. If your child is missing any of his adult teeth,  check with your pediatric dentist to find out the best treatment option.

As always, Keep Smiling!

Thursday, August 5, 2021

Stopped Your Routine Dental Cleanings? See What Can Happen...

 Have you been putting off your routine dental cleaning? shouldn't put it off much longer.
"It is because tooth decay and gum disease can lead to serious issues like abscesses and infections, potentially requiring root canals. In particular, gum disease has been connected to rheumatoid arthritis, pneumonia, and even Alzheimer’s disease. Meanwhile, bruxism often arises from stress, and an unhealthy smile leads to poor self-confidence. Your mouth and body are intricately connected and require regular care for optimal health.
The greatest oral issue stems from oral bacteria, which starts to form as soon as you eat or drink anything besides water. Brushing and flossing after you consume sugary and acidic foods and beverages – like sodas, juices, sports or energy drinks, tea, coffee, and alcohol – can help manage plaque formation and buildup but very few people take the time to do that.
What Happens at Your Biannual Dental Checkups?
Our skilled team’s goal is to catch and treat developing problems sooner rather than later, so they are easier, less invasive, and less costly to remedy. When you come in for your dental cleaning and exam, you can look forward to the following:
  • Dental X-rays as needed
  • Oral cancer screening
  • Sticky plaque buildup and tartar removal
  • Tooth stain removal by polishing enamel
  • Screening for tooth decay and gum disease
  • Checking every tooth for chips, cracks, cavities
  • Evaluating your jaw and bite for abnormalities
  • Ensuring that your current tooth restorations are in good shape
  • Scheduling to treat any current issues
  • Reviewing your at-home care if needed and recommending helpful products
  • Giving you answers to your questions and concerns
  • Toothaches
  • Tooth sensitivity when you eat or drink hot, cold, acidic, or sweet foods and beverages
  • Pitting or a hole in a tooth
  • Painful abscess around a tooth
Your best protection in between dental cleanings and exams is to brush twice a day, floss at least once daily, and use an antibacterial mouthwash to kill germs if you want to keep tooth decay and gum disease from gaining a foothold. Drink plenty of water every day, eat a balanced diet, and limit unhealthy drinks and foods as much as you can.
While we are seeing more problems with patients coming back after skipping dental cleanings this past year, know that we will never make you feel bad about missing your dental appointments! Our team can expertly clean your teeth and check for developing problems so we can fix them early. We will also go over your daily routine to make sure you have the best tools possible to fill in any gaps so you can get back on track to a healthier, happier smile! Call now to schedule a dental cleaning and exam for yourself or your family members!
Because of the pandemic (and occasionally dental anxiety just from going to the dentist), patients may find themselves tempted to skip a dental appointment or two, especially if they are not currently having any acute dental problems. But skipping those routine dental cleanings can also put one’s oral health and overall health at risk!
Bacterial Infection
And even if you do, brushing and flossing alone can’t reach and clean every surface in your mouth. It is where your professional dental cleanings come to the rescue. With the help of special tools, our hygienist removes hardened, calcified plaque (tartar or calculus) that you can’t clear away at home, especially in between teeth and around the gum line.
Removing calculus and bacteria protects your smile from cavities and gingivitis (gum disease), so you don’t suffer from bacterial infections like gum disease, which puts you at greater risk of tooth loss, heart conditions, and complications from diabetes. Oral bacteria also makes your breath smell bad and is off-putting to people in close contact.

Why Biannual Dental Exams?

Cavities mean the following and should not be ignored:

As tooth enamel weakens, cavities can accelerate from infection, whether it is inside the tooth, at the tooth root, or in the jawbone. The problem is an infection that spreads to nearby teeth. A cracked or fractured tooth can worsen whenever you bite down or chew hard food, and if the tooth completely breaks, you will know it from the pain. Your routine dental exams allow us to spot these kinds of issues early and treat them before they turn painful or expensive!

Daily Oral Hygiene Between Dental Cleanings

Your best protection in between dental cleanings and exams is to brush twice a day, floss at least once daily, and use an antibacterial mouthwash to kill germs if you want to keep tooth decay and gum disease from gaining a foothold. Drink plenty of water every day, eat a balanced diet, and limit unhealthy drinks and foods as much as you can.

While we are seeing more problems with patients coming back after skipping dental cleanings this past year, know that we will never make you feel bad about missing your dental appointments! Our team can expertly clean your teeth and check for developing problems so we can fix them early. We will also go over your daily routine to make sure you have the best tools possible to fill in any gaps so you can get back on track to a healthier, happier smile! Call now to schedule a dental cleaning and exam for yourself or your family members!"

Tuesday, August 3, 2021

Is Your Dentist Prepared for a Chairside Emergency?

 It isn't a common occurrence, necessarily.  But it does happen.  Medical emergencies in the dental chair can't always be prevented but the risks can be drastically reduced if the patient and the doctor are completely transparent and open with each other about illnesses, medication and health history. All dentists have at least some training for medical emergency treatment, however in addition he/she should have at least one staff member trained in CPR, and have an emergency plan in place which includes emergency phone numbers, a defibrillator, medications on hand and procedures to stop bleeding, etc. He should take your blood pressure reading and heart rate prior to treatment, and again after treatment. If administering general anesthesia, he should be anesthesia certified. Some states issue separate licenses for anesthesia. Always make sure he is certified, or that he has a certified anesthesiologist on staff! 

That said, here are some helpful suggestions for the patient to remember when having a procedure done:
  • Disclose all medications that you take daily, even if it is just an aspirin or something over the counter. 
  • If you have ever had high blood pressure, let the dentist know!
  • If you suffer from acute anxiety, say so!  Many dentists cater to the anxious patient. Things can be done to help you with that. 
  • If you are pregnant, let him know!
  • If you have allergies to medications, let him know! 
  • If you have taken anything prior to your visit for relaxation....a sedative, an alcoholic beverage, marijuana....seriously, he needs this information. Many people will do this before a visit and not disclose it thinking it won't pose a problem. The dentist isn't going to judge you, but he is going to treat you and there is a serious liability factor involved, especially when it comes to anesthesia, so don't hold anything back!  
The medical history of the patient is the single most helpful thing for a dentist to have before treatment begins.  Your honesty is imperative.  He cannot effectively manage your treatment plan without this knowledge!

Keep Smiling

Sunday, August 1, 2021

Can Your Dental Exam Reveal Osteoporosis?

Your teeth have been cleaned, x-rayed, and examined. You're ready to schedule your next 6-month check-up and be on your way. But instead, your dentist delivers some surprising news: you may have osteoporosis. You may think your dentist is kidding, but that's probably not the case. Signs of osteoporosis can often be seen on dental x-rays and exams. Oral health and bone health can be directly related. Your dentist can find possible signs of osteoporosis by examining your jawbone, gums, and teeth.

Although your dentist may suspect the disease, you can't tell for sure from an x-ray alone. To diagnose osteoporosis, you will need to see a doctor for a bone density test.

Original post by Btflbutterfly77 on 6/2009.

Tuesday, July 27, 2021

Toothpaste Isn't Just For Teeth!! Who Knew?

 Here are five toothpaste "hacks" that may not be commonly known. I may just have to try some of these myself!

  • Remove crayon from painted walls.  All you need is some toothpaste and a damp cloth, buff lightly then rinse the area.  Off it goes!
  • Scuffs on linoleum or tile floors.  Again, just a little toothpaste and a damp cloth.  Works like a charm.
  • Fingernails and Toenails.  This one I wish I had thought of myself!  Wet an old (emphasis on old) toothbrush, add toothpaste and generously apply to fingernails and toenails. Wait a few minutes, then scrub a little bit.  Rinse.  They will look fresh and bright!  It takes away the yellowing effect. Of course it would!  It works on teeth, right? I love this!
  • Clean jewelry.  It shines up diamonds and gold just as good as any jewelry cleaner would, and you already have it in your cabinet.  
  • Headlight haze.  How many of us pay good money to have the headlights treated after yellowing and scratching occurs?  Buff it out with toothpaste. If nothing else, you may be able to put off the expensive treatment for awhile. 
  • Skunk Spray Deodorizer.  Never would have thought of this one! The instructions I read are as follows: If your pet encounters a skunk, try this.  Wet him down, rub toothpaste into his fur, then rinse. Apparently the fluoride helps to eliminate some of the odor.  Not sure about this one.  I'd check with the vet first.  Some toothpaste contains xylitol, which is known to be a health risk for pets.
Keep Smiling! 

Thursday, July 22, 2021

How Periodontal Pocket Reduction Works?

 Do you suffer from Periodontal Disease? If so, check out this article from Winning Smiles Dentistry (Dr. Ghasem Darian).

Periodontal pockets are a serious gum issue that leads to the formation of spaces and openings around your gum line and, eventually, to infections. 

When left untreated, these pockets tend to fill up with infection-causing bacteria and can ultimately lead to tooth loss. 

The process of treating the condition is called periodontal pocket reduction. In this blog, we will take a look at the various options available for treatment.

Treating Periodontal Pockets

The treatment of periodontal pockets depends on their size and depth as well as the health of your gums and jaw bone. 

  • Scaling and Root Planing

Scaling and root planing is a two-step deep cleaning procedure. Scaling refers to the removal of plaque and tartar above and below your gum line. 

The next step - root planing, refers to the smoothing out of the tooth roots to enable your gums to reattach to the teeth. 

Both procedures are performed under anesthesia.

  • Professional Cleaning
Professional cleaning is the best solution if the periodontal pockets are 4 to 5 mm in depth. The cleaning will be complemented with a dynamic oral hygiene routine at home. 

The dentist will recommend that you brush and floss twice a day and use an antibacterial mouthwash daily, without fail. Doing so helps shrink gum inflammation while removing plaque and tartar from the gumline.

  • Flap (Pocket) Reduction Surgery
Flap surgery comes into play when you have deep pockets but the tooth can still be saved. The periodontist will make small incisions on the gum to gain access to the tooth root and then perform root planing and scaling. 

In case there is bone loss, the remaining bone will be smoothened, and any ridges where bacteria can thrive will be eliminated. The gum tissue will then be sutured back in place.

When left untreated, periodontal pockets can lead to severely weakened gums and even tooth loss. Therefore, seeking treatment at the right time is the best way to maintain your smile and your oral health.