Why It is Important to See a Dentist Before Surgery, Chemo, or Radiation

surgery,chemo, chemotherapy, cancer, radiation

Doctors know that the bacteria in your mouth can get into your blood stream easily and often recommend you see a dentist before pre-planned surgeries, chemotherapy, radiation, and other major medical treatments.

Even if they don’t suggest it, visiting your dentist is a good idea.

You will want to be as healthy as possible before your medical treatment and your dentist can help ensure that by:

  • Screening your mouth for infections and periodontal gum disease that can increase the dangerous bacteria you want to avoid.
  • Preventing dental emergencies during your recovery time. Potential urgent and painful tooth problems that might flare up during your treatment can be fixed and prevented if there is enough time.

We encourage you to come in as soon as you know about your surgery or treatment to allow plenty of time for us to take care of any potential problems we find. Of course, keeping your mouth healthy with regular brushing, flossing, and checkups will make it a lot easier to ensure your oral health during medical care.

Seeing your dentist before major medical treatments is an important step in supporting your health and a smooth recovery. For those of you in the Orange, CA area we would love to help.

Give us a call at: (714) 633-2562 

Diabetes and Your Oral Health

diabetes and oral health orange, ca

Taking care of your teeth and gums is even more important if your are diabetic. High blood glucose levels can increase bacteria in your mouth and set you up for serious dental problems.

On the flip side, if you have infection in your mouth, it can make it harder for you to control your blood sugar and stay healthy.

The biggest concern is periodontal gum disease, which is a bacterial infection that eats away at the gums and bone that support your teeth.  Bacteria love sugar and diabetics with increased blood sugar levels are more likely to develop severe cases of this disease. The consequences include tooth loss, gum recession, bone loss, bad breath, and impaired health.

Other potential oral health issues for diabetics include:

  • Dry mouth
  • Burning mouth
  • Ulcers
  • Tooth decay
  • Tooth loss
  • Infections
  • Thrush

Taking the following 6 steps will help ensure your mouth stays healthy:

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Your Teeth Can Get More Sensitive as You Get Older

sensitive teeth sensodyne in Orange, CaSudden stabs of pain. Not being able to enjoy your favorite cold drinks. Having to give up ice cream. Sensitive teeth can be uncomfortable and cause you to miss out on some of your favorite things.

You are more likely to experience tooth sensitivity as you get older. Wear and tear over the years can cause your gums to recede, exposing new areas and providing less insulation for the sensitive nerves inside your teeth. These unprotected nerves can get triggered by changes in temperature, pressure, touch, gritting or grinding, and other stresses in your mouth.

The good news is that there are 4 ways to prevent and heal tooth sensitivity.

1) Brush Gently: Teeth don’t need to be scrubbed hard to get clean and that scrubbing motion can damage your gums. Use a soft toothbrush and brush your teeth gently, as if you are just wiping them down. This will protect your gums.

2) Try Sensitive Teeth Toothpastes: There are toothpastes formulated specifically for sensitive teeth that help re-insulate those areas near your tooth nerves. The most commonly used brand is Sensodyne. Don’t expect a dramatic change after one use, they may take some time to become fully effective. Reading the label of the product you choose can provide more specific information.

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New Pediatric Guidelines for Children and Fruit Juice

baby sippy cup juice guidelines

The American Academy of Pediatrics has recently changed their guidelines for children and fruit juice. These changes are a result of their belief that drinking juices can contribute to obesity and tooth decay.

The new recommendations are:

  • Under age 1: No juice at all
  • Ages 1-3: Up to 1/2 cup per day
  • Ages 4-6: Up to 3/4/cup per day
  • Ages 7-18: Up to 1 cup per day

Pediatricians also want to remind parents that eating whole fruits is a much better option because juice alone has a lot of calories that can be consumed very quickly and easily.

Dentists want parents to remember that drinking juice as part of a meal or a quick snack is much better than sipping at it for a longer period of time. Children with juice in bottles or sippy cups can soak their teeth in sugar all day long.

We know that protecting your childrens’ teeth and health is important to you and want to make sure that you have this important information.

If you have any question, please feel free to contact us at: (714) 633-2562 Orange, CA

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Can Help Dental Anxiety

dental anxietyUnfortunately, there are a lot of people who get anxious about going to the dentist. Although the numbers vary, it is estimated that about 20% of people suffer from severe dental anxiety.

They often get caught in a cycle of avoiding dental care only to have emergencies that require more extensive treatment. The more challenging emergency visits reinforce their dental fear, causing them to stay away again until there is another crisis.

The results can impact their health and how they feel about themselves. They may become self conscious about their smiles, limit themselves socially, judge themselves for their fear, and fall into a lower quality of life.

We encourage our patients to talk to us about their concerns and let us know if they experience dental anxiety. In many cases we can work together to help their dental visits feel less scary. Our patients are always grateful for our gentle and understanding approach to helping them. With more severe cases or if a lot of dental treatment is needed, we can offer sleep dentistry.

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Why Our Patients Love Dental Implants and You Will Too

dental implants in orange, ca

It wasn’t so long ago that our options for replacing missing teeth did not include dental implants. Losing a tooth meant that you would need a dental bridge made of crowns with a false tooth between them, a partial denture that replaced some, but not all of your teeth, or a full denture when there were no teeth remaining.

The development of dental implants has added one more choice that in many cases is ideal. Our patients who have them would agree. They would tell you that they love their dental implants because they:

  • Have a proven record of long term success
  • Look, feel, and function like natural teeth
  • Are strong and stable
  • Improve the integrity and strength of your jaw bone
  • Don’t get cavities or periodontal gum disease
  • Usually last a lifetime, saving you a lot of money in the long run
  • Can be used to replace one tooth, multiple teeth, and even support dentures

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7 Ways to Get the Whiter, Brighter Smile You Have Always Wanted

 

Teeth Whitening in Orange, Ca

When you have a smile that you are proud to share, the world looks at you differently. People will see you as being more confident, approachable, and attractive. You will give great first impressions.

You are more likely to FEEL more confident and attractive, too.

Smiling can improve your mood and health and impact the people around you in a positive way. Just imagine what would be possible for your life if you could smile confidently and feel that good.

And now, the good news. YOU CAN!

Whether you simply want to whiten your teeth or need help with other issues like chips, cracks, and irregularities, we have the experience to help you get the smile you have always dreamed of.

To get you started, here are 7 simple ways to brighten your smile and start feeling more confident and attractive right away.

1. Lipstick – wearing red or pink lipsticks, gloss, or lip balms with blue undertones will make yellow teeth appear whiter.

2. Whitening Toothpaste – using these toothpastes can help remove surface stains.  Be careful not to over use them, though, as some have abrasives that could harm your teeth over time.

3. See Your Dental Hygienist – cleaning and polishing your teeth removes stains and tartar that can make your smile look less than clean and white.

4. Rinse Your Teeth – doing this after eating or drinking staining foods can lessen their impact.

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How to Find the Best Dentist for You and Your Family

Best Family Dentist in Orange, Ca

Finding a new dentist can feel like a big challenge if you don’t know what to look for. It is important that your new dental home feels right for you and that you trust the dentist and their team. Here are some things to consider in your search for the right dental office for you and your family.

Friendly and Caring – How you are treated on the phone when you first call an office can provide a glimpse into how they treat their patients in general. The best dental offices are always courteous, friendly, and caring.

If you have time and want to learn more about them, just go and sit in their office for awhile and see how it feels. You can learn a lot from how they talk to their patients and each other. Give them extra points if they notice you and ask how they can help.

Convenience – In today’s busy world it is important to find a dental office that is nearby and easy to get to. You will also want to check their hours.

One of the extra conveniences we provide is an on-site periodontist for our patients with gum disease. Instead of having to be referred out, you can get all of your dental needs taken care of in one place.

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Heartburn and Acid Reflux – Dangerous for Your Oral Health

 

matches and heart heartburn bad for teeth

Heartburn hurts for a reason.  It is a symptom of GERD, commonly known as acid reflux, that occurs when acid escapes from your stomach and travels up through your esophagus into your mouth.  Part of the reason it is so uncomfortable is that the acid is literally burning, causing irritation and damage along the way.

Why is this dangerous for your oral health?

Tooth Erosion: The onslaught of acid can eat away tooth enamel, causing damage and making your teeth more vulnerable to cavities, sensitivity, and other dental problems. Tooth enamel cannot be replaced, but most teeth can be saved with dental restorations. Treating your acid reflux condition can help you preserve your natural teeth and prevent extensive dental treatment.

Esophageal Cancer: As the acid travels through your throat it irritates and damages tissue.  When this happens on a regular basis, cells can become cancerous and the condition life threatening. Oral and esophageal cancers are dangerous and have a poor prognosis, making prevention even more important.

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What is a Deep Cleaning or Periodontal Scaling?

 

Dental-Hygienist1It can be confusing when you come into the dental office for a professional cleaning and they say you need to come back for more visits of deep teeth cleaning or scaling. If it isn’t explained well you may even feel like you are being taken advantage of.

We understand how you might be concerned and want to help make things more clear.

A regular teeth cleaning, called a prophylaxis, is very different than periodontal scaling.

Regular Cleaning = Cleaning and polishing the surfaces of your teeth and areas between your teeth that are above the gum line.

Periodontal scaling, root planing, or deep teeth cleaning = Removing hard tartar deposits, bacteria, and other debris that are below the gum line.

Deep Teeth Cleaning Orange County

In most cases the deeper teeth cleanings are recommended if:

  • There is infection or a lot of bacteria present
  • Your gums or the bone that supports your teeth are being compromised
  • You have periodontal (gum) disease
  • There is hard tartar and bacteria below the gum line
  • Measurements of the pockets around your teeth are 4 mm or more – a symptom  of gum disease that puts your teeth and gums at risk

We often see these symptoms in people who haven’t been to the dentist in a while or don’t brush or floss regularly. Seniors and patients who have a limited ability to brush or floss are at risk as well.

Our goal with these additional visits is to clean out the hard tartar that creates places for bacteria to live, heal the infection, and provide tools and information that will help you keep your mouth healthy. Occasionally, additional dental treatment will be recommended, especially if the bone or gum loss is severe, your teeth are loose, or have damage that needs to be repaired.

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