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Plaque is the sticky, colorless layer that builds up on your teeth.  Bacteria live in plaque and deposit acids that cause tooth decay and irritate gum tissue.  This irritation causes an inflammatory reaction by your body that can ultimately lead to gingivitis and periodontal disease.  If plaque is not removed regularly by tooth brushing and flossing, it hardens to create calculus (also known as tartar).  Calculus cannot be removed with a toothbrush; only a dental professional can get rid of it during an oral cleaning.  To keep plaque and calculus under control, it is imperative to brush your teeth twice every day, floss at least once every day and see your dental professional for regular cleanings.  Please call us to set up an appointment at 813-684-8085, before your plaque turns into calculus!

November 10, 2016
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Vitamin C - be sure you are getting your daily dose.  It helps the body repair and maintain connective tissue, and its antioxidant effects are important to help fight against periodontal disease.  A large 2010 study found that people who consumed less than the recommended daily dose of vitamin C (60 mg or about one orange) were 1.5 times more likely to develop severe gingivitis than those who consumed more than 180 mg each day.  (It should be noted that smoking also depletes your vitamin C resources.)  As residents (or snow-birds) of Florida where oranges are plentiful all year round, we have no excuse for not getting our daily "C"!

November 10, 2016
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The idea of dental implant in nothing new.  Back in the time of Cleopatra, the Egyptians would carve seashells to look like teeth and insert them in the socket of a recently lost tooth. Fortunately we've come a long way since then.  In fact,in the last 30 years major advancements have been made in dental implants, making them an everyday dental procedure.  

Today implants are most often titanium cylinders with threads.  In simple terms, they are very sophisticated dental screws that go into the jawbone.  These titanium screws act as a root of a tooth and are usually about as big around and as long as the root of a natural tooth.  The success rate is 97% or higher.

Dental implants can be used to replace a single tooth or any number that is needed.  The placement of implants is a relatively simple procedure done with only a local anesthetic (Novocain) and the healing period is usually only a few days.

The planning stage is the most critical part for an implant success.  Special x-rays are needed to evaluate the jawbone and identify all the important biological landmarks.  A clinical examination of the mouth is needed to further understand the individual needs of each patient.

Implants are usually placed under the gum line and remain there until the tooth portion is ready to be attached.  It takes about 3 months for lower jaw implants to fuse with the bone and 4 to 6 months in the uppper.  The time difference is due to the density of the bone, which is greater in the lower jaw.  Once the bone and implant have integrated together, the general dentist will finish the procedure by making a tooth or teeth that attach to the implants.

Taking care of an implant with the attached tooth is no more difficult than cleaning a natural tooth with a crown.  An added bonus is that it's impossible to have a cavity on a tooth supported by an implant.  

Implants have come a long way in a short period of time.  With the easy placement techniques and high success rates, dental implants are an option that should be explored with missing teeth need replacement.  

 

Researchers have found a link from frequent recreational cannabis use to periodontal disease.  This includes marijuana, hashish and hash oil.  In a study participants who use at least once a month for a year showed signs of increased mild, moderate, or severe periodontal disease. This study is a featured in the Journal of Periodontology published by the American Academy of Periodontology.

At a time in the United States when marijuana is becoming legalized in some states, users should be informed of the effect of using cannabis on the health of their gums.  Pocket depth measurements between a tooth and surrounding gum tissue range from one to three millimeters in healthy gums.  In gums with mild periodontal disease they measure from three to five millimeters and in more severe periodontal disease they measure more than seven millimeters deep.

There are a number of risk factors that can contribute to periodontal disease and the use of cannabis may be one of them.  Patients should always notify their periodontists of all risk factors in order to be diagnosed properly and given the appropriate treatment.  If you feel you are at risk please call and schedule a consultation with Dr. Wendt.

 

Smiles are infectious!  A smile can lower our stress levels, uplift our moods, make us more attractive and make us look more youthful.

That is why it is so important to keep our teeth and gums healthy.  Unfortunately many of us do not.  Almost 50 percent of American adults ages 30 to 65 have some form of periodontal disease.  Above 65 years old the percentage goes up to 65 percent. 

Symptoms of periodontal disease are receding gums, continuous bad breath, red and swollen gums, gums that bleed when flossing and loose teeth.

It is very important to brush your teeth a least twice a day, floss daily, have regular cleanings and go to have an annual comprehensive periodontal evaluation.

Dazzling smiles start with good oral hygiene and healthy gums.  Remember you will have your gums for life and it is essential to love the gums you are with. 



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