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Tooth Loss Can Cost More than Just Money

July 29th, 2016

tooth-lossA recent International and American Associations for Dental Research report on costs associated with dental diseases indicated the total amounted to $442 billion per year. Improving oral health around the world could help reduce these costs.

However, poor dental care that results in gum disease and tooth loss can cost people much more than just money. Here are three ways your Century City cosmetic dentist warns tooth loss can cost the average adult.

Tooth Loss and Unemployment Go Hand in Hand

Where there is unemployment, there is higher tooth loss, according to a recent post in USAToday. The conjecture is that missing teeth negatively affects a person’s chances of landing a job. Specifically, West Virginia had the “highest jobless rate in June” while at the same time it had “the most working-age adults” missing six or more teeth.

While the most obvious effect of tooth loss is aesthetic, in addition to being unsightly, tooth loss can affect speech. This one-two combination may increase problems when it comes to finding and keeping a job.

Tooth Loss Ruins a Smile and Confidence

The absence of one or more teeth can ruin your smile as well as destroy your confidence. Specifically, a national study found that depression and anxiety are associated with tooth loss. However, tooth loss can affect those around you as well.

Several studies cited at WebMD suggest smiling may lead people to assume you’re successful. In fact, statistics show that most people notice the smile first when meeting someone for the first time. Teeth and smiles are the “second most important attraction feature.”

Unfortunately, many people with visible tooth loss resist smiling due to lack of confidence. Your Beverly Hills cosmetic dentist can help make your damaged smile look new again.

Tooth Loss Can Result in Other Health Problems

The biggest reason for tooth loss is gum disease (gingivitis and periodontitis), according to the Academy of Osseointegration. You increase your chances of gum disease if you smoke or don’t eat a well-balanced diet. Chronic ailments such as diabetes or hypertension may also lead to gum disease. However, research now shows that the reverse may be true as well. Gum disease may lead to other health conditions.

For instance, research suggests the “relationship between diabetes and periodontal disease goes both ways.” Additionally, while the jury is still out on the cause-and-effect relationship between periodontal disease and heart disease, there are those who believe there is a connection. While bacteria have always been a factor in gum disease, it’s only been recently that health care professionals have begun to link the inflammation of gum disease to other health concerns.

If you suffer from gingivitis, periodontitis, or tooth loss, speak with your Century City cosmetic dentist to determine how he can help you save your smile.

Dental Health Tips You Might Not Know

January 5th, 2016

Dental TipsThink you know a lot about how to care for your teeth and gums? Sometimes what we think we know isn’t always accurate. Here are three interesting dental health tips your Beverly Hills cosmetic dentist wants to share with you.

Citrus Erodes Tooth Enamel Even in Water

Peruse the internet and you’ll find a number of links to posts (like this one from Health) that embrace the benefit of drinking lemon in water for good health. The claims run the gamut from boosting your immune system and offering an antioxidant boost to aiding in constipation and helping with weight loss.

However, as this post from Shape suggests, not everything you hear about lemon and water is beneficial. While it may help with digestion, the citric acid in lemons may aggravate stomach issues. Plus, one lemon isn’t generally enough to detox.

Finally, our main concern: citric acid can lead to erosion of tooth enamel. Although some people feel lemon and water is better than coffee with sugar when it comes to dental health, your Century City cosmetic dentist suggests that you limit your intake of both acidic and sugary food and drink.

Don’t Ignore Receding Gums

Gums play an important role in your mouth. They are a soft tissue that covers the roots and bone. They protect the roots from decay and help hold your teeth in place.

Unfortunately, periodontitis and mouth injury can cause gums to recede. Receding gums can lead to serious long-term problems including sensitivity, pain, decay, and tooth loss.

One of the best ways to protect your gums from damage is through proper dental care. That includes daily brushing and flossing along with regular visits to your Beverly Hills cosmetic dentist. Additionally, if you play sports, consider wearing a mouth guard.

Get the Right Dental Health Info

A new survey from the U.K. now says that nearly 50 percent of adults admit to not brushing before retiring at night, usually because they’re too tired. Not brushing your teeth before bed leaves your mouth vulnerable to all the bacteria that have built up during your day. It’s the perfect breeding ground for cavities and gum disease.

If that’s not bad enough, a new idea for losing weight recently popped up on the internet. It suggested that one of the best ways to drop pounds is to brush your teeth immediately after dinner. Specifically, “make sure to rush to your bathroom right after your meal and thoroughly brush your teeth for at least five to eight minutes,” the post recommends. This is completely contrary to popular dental health care recommendations.

First, your teeth are their softest right after eating. Brushing immediately afterwards puts them at risk. Instead, wait at least half an hour or chew sugarless gum to help remove harmful sugar and acid. When you do brush, it doesn’t need to be for five to eight minutes. Two to three minutes is plenty.

Knowing how to care for your teeth and gums can be confusing. One of the best ways to get the answers to your oral hygiene questions is to speak with your Century City cosmetic dentist.

What Men over 35 Should Know about Tooth Loss

November 5th, 2015

tooth-implantAging affects every part of the human body – even teeth. Although they are amazingly strong and resilient, time naturally takes its toll. However, if you’re a man over the age of 35, you may run a higher risk of tooth loss.

Risk Factors of Tooth Loss

Ten years ago, the Journal of Periodontology published the news that there were nine risk factors for tooth loss due to periodontal disease. These factors suggested that men over the age of 35 who smoked, had poor oral hygiene, and certain chronic diseases were more likely to suffer from tooth loss than others did.

Recent dental statistics continue to show that men put their teeth and gums at risk due to poor oral hygiene. Specifically, 2013 figures suggest that only about 20 percent of men brush after every meal and less than three-quarters have a dentist.

However, that doesn’t mean there is no hope. With the right dental care and guidance from your Century City cosmetic dentist, you can limit and even correct any tooth loss problems you are currently experiencing.

Men Can Reduce Tooth Loss

If you’re a male over the age of 35, you can’t change this. However, if you smoke; don’t brush, floss, or visit your Beverly Hills cosmetic dentist regularly; and suffer from certain chronic diseases, there are steps you can take to improve your dental health.

First, stop smoking immediately. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), smoking weakens your immune system making it tough to fight gum infection. Specifically, compared to non-smokers, smoking doubles your chance of gum disease. Left untreated, gum disease can lead to tooth loss.

Next, certain chronic diseases may result in a higher chance of gum disease and an increased incidence of tooth loss. If you suffer from diabetes, high blood pressure, and rheumatoid arthritis make sure to advise your dentist.

Finally, poor oral hygiene is the top reason men over the age of 35 have tooth loss. While smoking and general health may influence your dental health, taking good care of your teeth and gums is the best way to prevent gum disease, which ultimately leads to tooth loss.

Fixing Tooth Loss

Sometimes, even with the greatest dental care, you can still lose a tooth. When that happens, you have options.

If it’s only a single tooth, it doesn’t make sense to get dentures. However, a bridge is a common option. It literally bridges the gap between the remaining natural teeth. The downside is that the teeth on either side of the gap require shaping.

An even better option is a dental implant. Dental implants are the most natural feeling and looking choice and have no effect on neighboring teeth.

If you’ve lost a tooth and are considering your options, talk to your Century City cosmetic dentist. A dental implant may be the best answer for you.

Save Your Teeth and Gums by Flossing Daily

October 4th, 2015

flossTalk to your Century City cosmetic dentist and he’ll tell you that taking care of your teeth and gums must be a lifelong commitment. Otherwise, you could wind up with gum disease, cavities, and even tooth loss.

While dental implants are an extremely successful solution to tooth loss, having your natural teeth is always the wisest choice. One of the best ways to protect your teeth and gums against tooth loss is to floss daily.

Floss Daily to Avoid Tooth Loss

The American Academy of Periodontology warns that periodontal disease is a widespread public health problem among Americans. While periodontal disease is not the only reason people lose their teeth, unhealthy gums can increase your chances of tooth loss. Flossing can reduce the appearance of periodontal disease.

Periodontal disease occurs when a layer of oral bacteria called plaque forms on your teeth. It appears as red, swollen, and bleeding gums. Left untreated it can result in tooth loss. Unfortunately, most dental experts agree that brushing alone can’t eliminate all the plaque in your mouth. Primarily because standard toothbrushes cannot reach in-between teeth, where plaque hides and gum disease is common.

To avoid cavities, periodontal disease, and tooth loss, you need to floss daily. When done properly, flossing removes plaque as well as food particles from your teeth and gums. Talk to your Beverly Hills cosmetic dentist about proper flossing techniques.

Flossing Eliminates Need for Tooth Loss Solutions

Depending on the extent of your tooth loss, there are three typical tooth loss solutions: bridges, dentures, or dental implants. Which solution you and your Century City cosmetic dentist choose depends primarily on preference and individual situation.

Bridges are useful when a single natural tooth is missing. A simple bridge can span the gap between the remaining natural teeth. However, if you have more extensive tooth loss, your Beverly Hills cosmetic dentist may suggest dentures.

Another option is dental implants. Whether you need a single tooth or several, dental implants are most like your natural teeth in look and in their ability to prevent jawbone loss. Additionally, dental implants are the best solution when it comes to maintaining your ability to speak and chew properly.

Of course, even better than any of these tooth loss solutions are your natural teeth. Teeth and implants may seem the same, but they’re not. Primarily, your natural tooth has a ligament that attaches the root to the bone and acts to soften impact to the tooth.

In the end, your goal should always be to maintain and retain your natural teeth whenever possible. One of the best ways to save your teeth and gums is to floss at least once daily.

3 Important Secrets for Protecting Your Mouth from Germs

September 4th, 2015

mouth-germsHave you ever considered if you’re doing everything you can to protect your teeth and gums against oral bacteria and decay. Sure, you brush, floss, and get regular dental checkups. But, have you taken every precaution you can against germs?

Prevent Toothbrush Contamination

Your mouth is home to a wide variety of good and bad microorganisms. When you brush your teeth, toothpaste, germs, and debris easily transfer to your toothbrush. That’s why it’s important to take these steps to prevent toothbrush contamination:

  • Don’t share your toothbrush with anyone
  • Rinse and air dry your toothbrush thoroughly after brushing
  • Store your toothbrush in an upright position
  • Don’t cover your toothbrush or store it in a closed container
  • Avoid cross-contamination by keeping all toothbrushes in your home from touching

Additionally, don’t forget to replace your toothbrush when the bristles become worn, usually every three to four months. Ask your Century City cosmetic dentist if you have any questions about toothbrush care.

Safeguard Your Mouthguard

If you wear a mouthguard because you play sports or grind your teeth while your sleep, consider whether you are taking the right steps to protect your mouth against germs. That means more than rinsing your mouthguard with water. Specifically, the American Dental Association suggests:

  • Rinse your mouthguard or brush it with toothpaste before and after use
  • Occasionally use cool, soapy water to clean your mouthguard
  • Store and carry your mouthguard in a sturdy, vented container
  • Protect your mouthguard against the sun and hot water (i.e. don’t put it in a dishwasher to clean it)
  • Monitor your mouthguard for wear and replace if necessary

Keeping your mouth guard clean should be part of your daily routine to keep microorganisms from finding a home on it. Talk to your Beverly Hills cosmetic dentist if you play sports or believe you have bruxism.

Keep Your Dentures Kissing Fresh

Anyone who wears dentures likely already knows the importance of keeping them clean. Good denture care helps fight against germs as well as stains. Here’s what the Mayo Clinic suggests denture wearers do to properly care for their dentures:

  • Remove and rinse dentures after you eat to eliminate debris
  • Carefully clean your dentures daily by brushing them with a nonabrasive denture cleaner
  • Thoroughly clean your mouth with a soft toothbrush or clean gauze pad
  • Soak dentures overnight using a mild denture-soaking solution
  • Rinse dentures before placing them in your mouth
  • Avoid using abrasives, whitening or bleaching products, and hot or boiling water on your dentures

Additionally, be sure to visit your Century City cosmetic dentist for regular checkups and cleanings, and be sure to tell your dentist promptly about any problems you may have with your dentures.

Protect your mouth from unnecessary contamination. Learn to care for the tools that help give you a great smile.