Having practiced dentistry now for 12 years, I’ve seen a lot of different stuff, tried different technologies, different techniques, etc. Most of it works pretty well, some of it we discard and look for something new or better, and occasionally we scrap the new and return to the tried-and-true techniques and methods that have been around for a long time. The ultimate goal, of course, is to provide the best dentistry possible that will last the longest time, right? Because after all, I know that you want to sit in my chair as little as possible. 🙂
Of all the different things we do, though, there is now 1 that is just so incredibly satisfying to provide our patients, and that is LANAP, or Laser-Assisted New Attachment Protocol, which we perform with our Periolase MVP-7 laser. First of all, it’s is just pretty cool that we have a laser! (Imagine here Dr. Evil from Austin Powers putting his fingers up and saying “Laser” LOL) But what’s simply AWESOME about having the Periolase is what we can do with it, and that is to treat periodontal (gum) disease more comfortably and effectively than anything else available. Because of how amazingly well the Periolase works, it is just this terrific feeling we get every time we treat a patient, or when we see patients coming back in for follow-ups, because they actually LIKE coming to see us! And I have to tell you, there aren’t many things that patients WANT and LIKE coming to see us about. The other one, of course, is our 6MonthSmiles Clear Adult Braces – adults love getting their smile looking good so much faster than they ever imagine, and more affordably, too.
So let me show you just 1 example of why it is so satisfying helping people save their teeth from the trash can, because it is so typical and normal of what we see on a regular basis. Colleen had LANAP done in December 2009, which means it is just at 9 months since her treatment. She is getting ready to start 6MonthSmiles in September, which will help even more, but notice that her front teeth have already improved in position just by getting the infection under control. Just how much of an improvement is this? Well, in the before picture, we had not even treated her yet, but in the After picture, it is immediately after a gentle cleaning……and her gums look great!
No wonder we love doing LANAP! If you’re concerned about losing your teeth to gum disease, please call us today at 704-364-7069 or Request an Appointment Online.
Please let us know what you think about this amazing result or if you have any questions in the Comments section below. Thanks!
I guess it’s because I don’t watch a lot of TV, but I confess that – until quite recently – I had absolutely no idea who this guy Dr. Oz is. A friend recently told me that Dr. Oz has some really good material about dental health that can be shared, and since it’s sometimes easier to use someone else’s material instead of having to write it all from scratch myself 🙂 , I figured I’d check it out, and WOW! I’m impressed! It’s sad to say, but many physicians really have no idea about how the health of the mouth is connected to the rest of the body, and how valuable their dental colleagues can be in diagnosing a number of medical conditions. Dr. Oz is definitely not one of them! I’ll kick things off here with one of his articles. I have added some bold italics for emphasis (all mine).
One look inside the mouth will reveal that there are bacteria everywhere. For the most, part we cohabitate without a worry – but badly-behaving bacteria can collect in gum pockets to cause swelling, bleeding and bone loss that in turn can cause teeth to loosen and fall out.
People with gum disease (periodontal disease and gingivitis), may harbor up to 500 species of bacteria, and the proximity of that bacteria to the normally sterile bloodstream can be worrisome. Bacteria can enter small blood vessels, travel to other parts of the body and release toxins and trigger inflammatory chemicals that assault arteries and organs. Gum disease and tooth loss is now considered a harbinger for coronary artery disease, infective endocarditis, bacterial pneumonia, diabetes, kidney disease and stroke. Periodontal bacteria have also been detected in the mouths and amniotic fluid of women who have experienced threatening premature labor, miscarriage and may contribute to low-birth weight.
Breath can be telling too. More than 90% of the time bad breath (halitosis) emanates from bacteria living in gum pockets, under dentures and on the surface of the tongue. It is not only unpleasant to people close to you, but it may also be a clue to other medical conditions.
Oral cancers, lung cancer, certain leukemias and dry mouth syndromes such as Sjogren’s syndrome can cause bacterial overgrowth that contribute to bad breath. And sometimes a systemic disease produces distinct chemical odors:
- Sweet or fruity odor may indicate uncontrolled diabetes
- Mousy ammonia odor may indicate liver disease
- Urine-like fishy odor may indicate chronic kidney failure
- And fecal odor may indicate intestinal blockage.
To find out if you have foul-smelling breath, ask a truthful friend, or lick your hand and smell the saliva.
Changes in the tongue can also be a tip-off to disease. A pale, smooth, flattened and sometimes tender tongue can point to iron or vitamin B12 deficiency, a hallmark of the common blood disorder, iron-deficiency anemia. People with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis may notice tiny ulcers. If the tongue looks like a geographic map with areas of dark and light it may indicate an autoimmune disorder such as psoriasis or discoid lupus erythematosus. Recurrent episodes of white patches indicate thrush, an overgrowth of the yeast Candida, which may indicate diabetes. Strawberry red swollen tongue with a white coating and big red bumps is a symptom of Kawasaki disease.
Hairline cracks in the teeth can indicate tooth-grinding, the sleep disorder bruxism or mental stress. People with bulimia have enamel loss on their front teeth from the assault of stomach acid from repeated vomiting.
Keep Oral Traditions
Keeping up with a good program of oral hygiene and tending to dental and gum problems before they worsen is key to keeping mouths healthy. People with declining dexterity may need to make modifications that assure that good dental care continues. Electric toothbrushes, vibrating gum massagers and dental water jets can help. Routine dental visits are crucial, especially if you are planning to become pregnant or are facing a course of chemotherapy, which can reduce immunity against oral bacteria and cause mouth sores.
Here’s some help for halitosis, guidance for gums and tips for tooth care.
- Investigate any changes in your oral health
- Brush in the morning, at night and after meals with a soft toothbrush or African chew stick
- Use a tongue scraper along the length of the tongue to remove odor-causing bacteria
- Use an antiseptic mouth rinse
- Floss between teeth and inside the crease where the gum and tooth meet
- Keep well hydrated and avoid mouth breathing
- Don’t smoke or be near someone smoking (that can cause smoker’s breath too!)
- Try chewing on neem leaves, green cardamom, cloves, parsley, guava peels and gum mastic for breath control
- Visit the dentist regularly
It’s easy for me to tell you that Laser Periodontal TherapyTM is both effective and comfortable, but we both know that it’s easier to believe when you talk to someone who has actually been through it. So, right after we finished up treating a really sweet patient yesterday, we asked her if she wouldn’t mind recording a short video so our other patients could hear directly how easy it was. That said, let me introduce you to Milli:
OK – so I’m just going to be adding a LOT of information about periodontal (gum) disease and how the Periolase MVP-7 laser treats it so well; in addition, I’ll finally be getting around to adding more information on the significant health effects that gum disease can have, including:
- Increased risk of heart attack
- Increased risk of stroke
- Risk of worsening diabetes
- Increased risk of pre-term births
- Increased risk of low-birth-weight babies
Just so you know I’m not making this stuff up 🙂 , here are a few videos by national news programs that will help fill in the gaps:
And in case you missed Whoopi Goldberg talking about her gum disease on “The View,” don’t miss it again!
Man oh man, am I excited! We are taking some bold new steps in technology here at Smiles by Payet Dentistry by upgrading to the newest version of our In-office, 1-Visit Crowns CAD/CAM system, the CEREC AC Bluecam, AND we’re FINALLY adding the Periolase MVP-7 laser to our practice, which is THE most effective treatment for gum disease available today. Lots more information will be forthcoming as we get closer to the equipment arriving. The Periolase will hopefully be in the office by late August, and the CEREC Bluecam by early September.
But what do each of these additions mean to YOU? Some pretty good things, actually:
1) The CEREC Bluecam is even faster and more accurate than my current CEREC 3D, and it’s software is designed to make doing 4-6 or more veneers/crowns much easier, faster, and better. The other really cool thing is that, even if we can’t do the actual restoration with the CEREC, it’s software allows us to take digital impressions and EMAIL them to the lab! That means NO MORE GOOEY IMPRESSIONS! And the accuracy is just phenomenal. With it’s speed and accuracy, we anticipate being able to complete a 6-10 tooth Smile Makeover in JUST ONE VISIT! How amazing would that be? It can be done with the current version I have, but it’s slow, clunky, and would take absolutely forever – no thanks.
2) As excited as I am about the Bluecam, what I’m MOST excited about is the Periolase MVP-7 laser. This is groundbreaking technology, but it’s not just the laser itself, it is that it’s backed by a FDA-approved, patented protocol for success, not just some company’s word that it works. The Periolase has more research backing it up on it’s successful treatment of gum disease than any other laser currently available. Periodontal disease is responsible for more teeth being lost/extracted even than cavities, and studies show that about 50% of all Americans currently have some level of gum disease, but only 7% actually get treatment. What makes this really crazy is that periodontal disease has been linked to a drastically increased risk of heart attacks, strokes, diabetes, as well as low birthweight and pre-term babies.
Much more news will be forthcoming about both of these fabulous new technologies that we’re adding for your benefit as we approach their delivery dates. Stay tuned, and be ready to call 704-364-7069 for a consultation or Make an Appointment Online.
This article was highlighted by the Academy of General Dentistry warning of the increased risk of heart attack, stroke, and diabetes, among other health issues, due to cavities and gum disease. See……just because you don’t have a toothache does not mean that your gum disease or cavities aren’t hurting you in other ways!
If you’re concerned about your own overall health but have neglected seeing a dentist to keep these problems from getting out-of-hand, call us today:
704-364-7069 or go to SmilesbyPayet.com to request an appointment.
Given how important gum health is to overall mouth health, it is kind of bad that I haven’t addressed it yet on my blog, so it’s time to get to this very important subject! The first thing to note: as much as I love to use photos to illustrate different situations, I’m not going to use any pictures of gum disease, and please trust me on this….you don’t want me to do so! LOL Gum disease can look pretty nasty (and it is!), and if you’re reading this around lunch or dinner, I don’t want you to lose your appetite. 🙂
First question then: What is the difference between Gum (Periodontal) Disease and Gingivitis?
In simplest terms: Gingivitis is inflammation of your gums, but Gum Disease is infection of your gums. Both are caused by bacteria, but gum disease is a lot more severe and has worse implications for your overall health, not just your gums and teeth.
If you listen to the TV commercials by certain mouthrinse manufacturers, you’d get the idea that gingivitis is pretty darn bad stuff. True, you should not ignore it, but no, it does not mean your teeth are on the verge of falling out.
Whether or not gingivitis ever progresses to gum (periodontal) disease is affected by a number of factors, including
- The kinds and amounts of bacteria that you have in your mouth
- Your immune system
- Your oral hygiene habits (brushing, flossing, mouthrinses, etc)
We actually categorize gum disease into 4 stages, called Type I, II, III, and IV (there are some oddbal scenarios, but as they’re rare I”m not going to bother you with them). Type I is the mildest form and is when gingivitis crosses the line into gum disease, with Types II and III getting progressively worse with the gum separating from the teeth, bone being lost around the teeth, the gums getting redder and bleeding more easily, more and more tartar and plaque building up around the teeth, and EVENTUALLY (if it’s not treated and controlled) it reaches Type IV, and if your gum disease has progressed that far, it is quite possible that you will be losing your teeth pretty darn soon.
Did you know that gum disease is the cause of more extractions that cavities even?
So what can you do about it? Stay tuned…….more information coming soon! It’s important, too, BECAUSE GUM DISEASE HAS BEEN LINKED TO A NUMBER OF OTHER VERY SERIOUS MEDICAL CONDITIONS YOU DON’T WANT!