You know oral health is about more than looking your best. Maintaining healthy teeth and gums is the foundation of oral health. Did you know the cause of most tooth loss is gum disease, not decay? And recent studies have found a link between gum disease and overall health. The good news is that gum disease can be treated successfully, often without surgery. We strive to ensure all of our patients have outstanding oral health. Our commitment to you includes paying meticulous attention to all of your needs so you can achieve this goal.
One of the most important reasons to visit the dentist is to have your teeth cleaned by a professional hygienist. Over time, plaque and tartar accumulate on teeth. Regular brushing can usually remove most of the soft and sticky plaque. But when it's not removed, it hardens into tartar. Tartar defies your typical toothbrush and floss and accumulates below the gumline as well as on the surface of your teeth. If you don't remove plaque, the risk of future serious problems with your teeth and gums increases. Recent research also shows a specific link between untreated gum disease and conditions like diabetes, heart disease, and stroke. Having your teeth cleaned regularly is one of the best things you can do to stay healthy!
Dental health is more than just a nice smile and no toothaches. From having strong teeth to properly chew food, to healthy gums that perform their protective function, excellent dental health is an important component to the overall wellness and vitality of your body. In recognition of the importance of dental health, our doctors have implemented a process that goes beyond the "diagnose and repair problems" approach common in the dental profession. With this process, your dental health (and particularly your gum health) is tracked on graphs from visit to visit and maintained by computer, where you have a visual history of your dental health. From there, you and Dr. Vadnal or Dr. Stewart can set health goals. Our practice works with you, much like a coach or trainer, in achieving those goals.
It's an often unknown statistic that oral cancer causes one American death every hour, a mortality rate that has remained the same for decades. On the plus side, early detection has a record of a 90% cure rate for oral cancer. That's why we conduct a visual screening for oral cancer at every six-month checkup and cleaning. If the doctor or hygienist sees anything that could be cause for concern, they'll refer you to an oral surgeon. This screening could literally save your life!
Teeth with infected or damaged roots used to require extraction, which
can cause a lot of problems and should be avoided whenever possible. The
good news is that advanced root canal therapy can save such teeth. The root
canal fixes your "sick" tooth by replacing the pulp chamber with a special
filling material. This is often necessary when dental decay reaches the
nerve of the tooth (or the tooth has become infected), and a simple filling
will not suit.
Not too long ago, this type of situation would have required the tooth to be removed. When dentists started performing root canals, they were often dreaded, causing a reputation as something to be avoided. We're happy to use modern anesthetics and technology that can make root canals far more manageable.
Understanding Tooth Wear
Progression of Decay
Our bodies aren't the only things to change as we get older. Our teeth and gums do too. Plaque building up for years, plus coffee, tea, or tobacco consumption, can darken teeth. We have procedures to combat such problems. If certain types of medication have caused reduction in saliva flow, some simple products can help address the results. Aged fillings can weaken or crack, so you want to keep your regular check-ups and allow us to stay on top of these. Gum disease and root decay are often issues seniors have to deal with. Daily cleaning and good nutrition are critical for healthy gums. If your gums become red or begin to bleed or your teeth start to feel loose, contact us immediately.
Many patients are unaware of the link between dental health and controlling blood sugar levels. Each can make the other worse if untreated. Not all dentists are equally prepared to assist diabetics with their dental health. You'll be glad to know that we have received special training on dental care for diabetics to halt the potentially vicious cycle. Call us today for a complimentary consultation about dentistry for diabetics. No one at Infinite Smiles will ever criticize you if you've put off dental care. Compassionate and completely non-judgmental care is our trademark, and we can help you.
Xylitol is a substance naturally found in such foods as berries, fruit, mushrooms, and vegetables. Our bodies even produce 5 to 10 grams every day. It is particularly effective in combating tooth decay caused by eating foods high in sugar and starch. Clinical testing over 25 years has confirmed that xylitol is the best sweetener for teeth. It has been endorsed by dental associations in Norway, Finland, Sweden, Ireland, England, Estonia and the Netherlands.
You can use xylitol through tablets, chewing gum, toothpaste, mouthwash, or even candy. It's even known to help those suffering from allergies, and also comes in a nasal spray. In our practice we offer and encourage our patients to use xylitol products. The results have been amazing. If you want fewer cavities and better upper respiratory health, ask us about xylitol!
If it's time for your next cleaning, or if you're ready to schedule a no-cost/no-obligation consultation, call us now at (314) 892-8853.