Sunday, July 30, 2017

Pinhole Gum Rejuvenation (Action News Health Check on ABC)

Also known as the Chao Pinhole Surgical Technique® and the Lunchtime Gum Lift™, the Pinhole Technique® is changing the way doctors around the world are treating gum recession and making it easier for patients to decide to have needed treatment for receding gums.

Dr. Burton of Regency Dental Group in Vacaville has been trained in the pinhole technique by Dr. Chao personally. Please call our office for more information and to schedule your appointment! 

Thursday, July 27, 2017

How Can I Get My Child to Brush Her Teeth?

Does your child run in the other direction every time you reach for the toothbrush? Get some tried-and-true tips for making brushing fun from a dentist who’s been in your shoes.

Monday, July 24, 2017

Could Humans Ever Regrow Teeth?

98% of American suffer from tooth decay, but scientists may have found a way to fix that. Is there a way to regrow your teeth?

Friday, July 21, 2017

Stages of Gum Disease


Gingivitis, an early gum infection, is a reversible disease characterized by tenderness, swelling, and most importantly, bleeding of the gum tissue. In the United States, a majority of youngsters over the age of thirteen already have gingivitis! The normal, healthy pink color darkens from the increase in blood volume, and goes through various shades of red. In more advanced cases, the gums may appear reddish-blue. Gingivitis usually begins gradually and progresses as symptoms become more prominent. It can, however, be a fluctuating disease. For example, inflamed areas develop and then become normal, only for inflammation to reappear at a later date. Bad breath, which frequently accompanies periodontal diseases, may first develop during gingivitis.

The Periodontal Pocket

If plaque accumulation did no more than cause irritation or gingivitis, we might not be so concerned. Unfortunately, because most bleeding is ignored, the advantage is lost of detecting early signs of periodontal disease and receiving prompt and relatively simple care. If the disease progresses, serious consequences can develop.

As noted earlier, the gum reacts to plaque with swelling and inflammation. This condition permits the plaque to approach the normally well-adapted crevice or sulcus between the gingiva and tooth. The infection spreads into the attachment causing the gum to separate from the tooth.

With the gum seal broken, more plaque can bury itself within the newly enlarged gum space. The space created by this separation is called a periodontal pocket and represents the critical pathologic entity of periodontal disease. In general, it is the comparative measurement of these pockets that reveals the extent and seriousness of periodontal disease.

Chronic Periodontitis

As the gum infection advances along the root, the pocket deepens with destruction of bone and attaching fibers. This condition is called periodontitis and the most common type is known as chronic periodontitis. The disease slowly progresses over time.

Pus can develop as supporting bone is destroyed and interacts with the infected gum tissue, usually in the latter stages of the disease. Sometimes so much support is destroyed that the teeth become loose. Periodontitis is serious business. Left untreated, periodontitis has the potential to continue for many years as a chronic, progressive infection, and a true threat to the survival of the teeth.

Aggressive Periodontitis

A very destructive type of periodontal disease, less common than chronic periodontitis, is known as aggressive periodontitis (AgP). Individuals with aggressive periodontitis demonstrate significant and rapid bone loss around their teeth. The disease is particularly disturbing as it is often diagnosed in children and young adults. It can first appear around the time of puberty or even earlier, although it is also diagnosed later in life. A peculiar characteristic often seen with AgP is that destruction of underlying bone can be extensive even though there is only a surprisingly small amount of plaque in the mouth.

AgP patients do not always respond well to routine periodontal therapy. Some systemic diseases or altered mechanisms of the body are thought to contribute to the unpredictability and difficulty in treating AgP. The influence of defective cells in the body's defense mechanism has been suggested as one explanation. Also, this type of periodontal disease is frequently found among family members, supporting the likelihood of a genetic predisposition to AgP.

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Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Dental Health Is More Important Than Ever

No one can deny the importance of regular dentist visits. As a window into the overall health of an individual, dental health is crucial. It can show early signs of many diseases and also leaves one with a healthy smile. Research continues to prove that any conditions of the body can be discovered via oral health, and of course poor oral health can lead to other problems.

Since research also shows that good oral health may actually prevent certain diseases from occurring. Cheap dental plans are available to ensure that everyone has a chance for good oral health care.

Be on the Lookout for Gum Disease

The relationship between gum disease and other health complications has been discovered by the ADA or American Dental Association along with many other organizations. Heart disease and stroke are both found to be related to poor oral health. Another condition that is affected directly by poor oral health is pregnancy. Women often give birth to smaller and pre-term babies when they don't execute good oral health care.

Further studies prove that almost 100% of diseases that involve all the organs of the body have some relation to poor oral health. Anyone who is suffering from ulcers of the mouth, swollen gums, dry mouth or other oral issues should be seen immediately to assess for the following diseases:
  • Leukemia
  • Diabetes
  • Oral cancer
  • Heart disease
  • Pancreatic cancer
  • Kidney disease
Since most patients on cheap dental plans get periodic oral health examinations there is a good chance that they will have early diagnosis of possible health problems in the early stages before it becomes a bigger issue.

Avoid Unnecessary Pain

Those who don't take the time to enroll in a cheap dental plan and don't care for their gums and teeth may be subject to more health problems than those who do. Facial pain and of course oral pain are usually because of gum infection. Tooth loss is another problem as the gums support the teeth and if they aren't doing their job, teeth will easily fall out. Gingivitis is said to affect a large percentage of the world's population, in fact almost all of it. It is an early form of gum disease and can be easily detected during regular visits under a cheap dental plan.

One can also protect their heart and other organs by avoiding oral infections. Important functions are ceased when inflammation occurs due to bacteria build up.

Finally, digestion issues can be brought on from poor oral health. Failure of the intestines, irritable bowel syndrome and many other digestive disorders are just some of the problems that one can face.

What Can Be Done

Regular visits to a dentist under a cheap dental plan can keep one's mouth healthy as possible and prevent problems, but also help detect any happenings that can lead to possible health issues. Exams are crucial and dentists can guide patients to proper hygiene and nutrition and identify any potential problems.

They will teach patients good oral hygiene that includes brushing teeth twice daily for at least two minutes using a toothpaste with fluoride, daily flossing to remove plaque that isn't reached during brushing, and a healthy diet full of vitamins.

Further, even on cheap dental plans, dentists will advise patients to not smoke or use chewing tobacco. These products promote oral cancer and gum disease. Preventative care is the most important way to find early signs of periodontal disease. A great dental provider will ensure there are regular checkups scheduled and keep their patient informed on every detail of their oral health, as dental needs change throughout a patient's life.

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Saturday, July 15, 2017

Do Electric Toothbrushes Work Better Than Regular Toothbrushes?

They both clean your teeth, but does one do a better job? ADA dentist Dr. Richard Price breaks down the benefits of electric and regular toothbrushes in this “Ask an ADA Dentist” video.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Dental Health Is Directly Related to Overall Health

The lifestyle which we live has a direct impact on the health of our mouth, teeth and gums. What we eat and drink has a direct effect on our teeth and gums. This is the reason why many dentists will suggest you to drink soft drink using a straw and also to avoid any acidic foods. Today we discuss about how our overall health is interrelated to the health of our gums and teeth.

You maintain your overall health by eating healthy foods and drinks. Foods which are rich in vitamin are considered good for your overall health and also for your dental health. However as we grow we change our eating habits and other day-to-day habits. We start consuming acidic foods which directly impact the enamel and stains our teeth. We start consuming soft drinks which again has a direct effect on our enamel. Apart from the food that we consume, we also feel that doing certain things such as smoking, piercing our lips or tongue and drinking excessive alcohol makes us look cool. However the result is different. Smoking leads to tooth loss, gum disease and many other problems related to dental health. With piercing oral infections become common and also leads to chipped tooth. The effect of piercing does not just stop with these two problems. It might also lead to gum recession which eventually leads to tooth loss.

Sugar is yet again another cause of tooth decay and an important threat to our dental health. Sugar is present in our foods which lead to plaque. This plaque then teams up carbohydrates and leads to the formation of acids. The acid breaks down the enamel and eventually leads to tooth cavities. If the infected tooth is not treated it will lead to tooth cavities becoming deeper resulting in pain and might even lead to tooth loss.

While we are grown up it at times becomes difficult for us to keep a track of what we are eating. Practically we just cannot calculate the amount of sugar present in our food. However there is one thing which is under our control. We can ensure that our mouth is being cleaned regularly as this maintains proper dental health. No matter what you eat and drink you should brush twice in a day followed by flossing. Many of us are not aware that ideally you should brush for two minutes. You will be surprised to know that not many of us last that long while brushing. Apart from brushing and flossing you should visit your dentist twice in a year. This will keep you updated about your dental health and will also help the dentist to detect whether you are suffering from any dental problem or not.

Staying upbeat with your health has a psychic effect as well. A healthy body will always be filled with positive energy and happiness. So it becomes imperative for us to maintain our dental health and healthy body.

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Sunday, July 9, 2017

What You Can Do About Bleeding Gums

Bleeding gums are often a cause for concern as well as they should be in most cases. Bleeding gums are often caused by something not right with your gums. Your gums have become weak and injured. Some of these causes are cause for great alarm, such as the beginning of periodontal disease. Others, are easily preventable and reversed, such as brushing or flossing too vigorously. Sometimes bleeding gums are caused by hormones that can be outside of your immediate control.

Treatment Options for Bleeding Gums

Whatever the cause may be, the first step in getting them treated is to see your dentist. He or she will be able to assess whether your bleeding gums are the result of gum disease or by something else.

Periodontal Disease Treatment

If your dentist determines you have periodontal disease, there are many courses of action they may recommend depending on the severity. If you have the early stages, it can be easily reversed with good dental hygiene and regular visits to the dental office.

In more severe cases, where the periodontal disease has advanced, your dentist may recommend scaling or root planing to limit the build-up of plaque and slow down the progression of the disease. Ongoing periodontal therapy may be needed to keep it at bay. In the most extreme cases of gum disease, surgery may be required to maintain the structure of the mouth and jaw bone and to save the teeth.

Other Bleeding Gum Treatment Options

If you find out that your bleeding gums are not caused by the beginning of gum disease, less extreme treatment options will be recommended.

If your dentist determines that your bleeding gums are the result of improper oral hygiene practices, he or she will recommend changes to your dental hygiene routine. These recommendations may include:

Using a soft toothbrush. Hard (or stiff) bristled toothbrushes can scratch, damage and weaken both your gums and the enamel of your teeth. This can make your gums and teeth more vulnerable to gum disease and cavities. A soft-bristled brush won't irritate, scratch or injure your gums in a way that causes them to bleed.

Practice proper brushing techniques. Brush too hard, using the wrong brushing pattern or not brushing your teeth and gums long enough can cause your gums to get injured, irritated and weak to the point where they bleed. The proper teeth brushing technique recommended by dentists include using gentle, circular motions over your teeth and gums for two minutes twice a day.

Implement daily flossing. Many patients shy away from flossing for fear of causing their gums to bleed. If you practice daily flossing, your gums will eventually strengthen to the point where they will stop bleeding. Bleeding gums when you first begin flossing is normal as it is a result of weak gums, which if not addressed and strengthened, can lead to gum disease. It is recommended you floss at least once a day.

Choose a quality mouth rinse. If your mouthwash contains alcohol, throw it out. Alcohol dries out the mouth which accelerates the development of plaque that causes gum disease. An alcohol-free mouthwash won't dry out your mouth and will destroy gum disease and cavity cause bacteria and plaque.

Avoid tobacco products and a poor diet. The harsh chemicals in tobacco products can irritate gums, causing them to weaken and bleed. Tobacco also discolors teeth. A diet heavy on sugars and simple carbohydrates increases the growth and formation of plaque which accelerates the progress of gum disease and bleeding gums. Constant snacking throughout the day is also not recommended because it leads to the accumulation of plaque build-up on the gums and teeth.

Have an aligned bite. If your bite isn't properly aligned or you have crowded or missing teeth, there is a greater chance for plaque to build-up between teeth and on the gums, which can cause them to bleed. Habits such as teeth grinding or jaw clenching can put additional force on the teeth and gums, wearing them down to make them more vulnerable to decay and disease. Regular visits to your dentist are recommended if you have braces or dentures, or have TMJ. He or she can properly adjust your apparatus to ensure a proper, straight bite.

Bleeding gums are not anything to ignore. The cause of your bleeding gums can be a symptom of gum disease which can lead to additional, severe oral health issues.

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Thursday, July 6, 2017

Why It's Important to Protect Your Mouth Against Gum Disease

You've heard about gum disease and that it is bad for your oral health.

Unfortunately, gum disease is common in American adults. The prevalence of sugary, processed foods and de-emphasis on exercise has contributed to an uptick in dental health issues, namely cavities and gum disease.

What is Gum Disease?

Your dentist may have explained it to you during your last dental examination and cleaning. Gum disease is caused by the buildup of plaque on the surface of the gums. Plaque is made up of germs and bacteria that can irritate your gums and lead to the breakdown of gum tissue and bone tissue in the jaw. The same plaque erodes enamel (the hard, protective outer layer of teeth).

Plaque is the result of the combination of sugars and simple carbohydrates in foods and drinks with the natural bacteria found in the mouth. If proper dental hygiene isn't practiced, the plaque will accumulate on the gums. Over time, if the plaque is not removed, it hardens and turns into tartar. Only your dentist will be able to scrape away the tartar.

The most common type of gum disease is gingivitis. This is the mildest form of gum disease and it can be quickly and easily reversed. Untreated gingivitis is called periodontitis. With periodontitis, the damage done to the gums, and surrounding jaw bone can't be reversed, but they can be stopped. There are two stages of periodontitis: mild and advanced.

The most common symptoms of gingivitis include: red, swollen, tender gums that receded from the teeth, bad breath, gums that bleed easily, pockets along the gum line, and crooked or loose teeth.

How Gum Disease Affects You

Besides bleeding, swollen, sensitive, and sore gums, gum disease can lead to additional oral health issues as well as health concerns to other organs and body systems.

Oral Health Issues

In the most severe cases of advanced periodontitis, teeth may be lost or extracted. Missing teeth can further accelerate the destruction of the bone in the jaw and can cause the remaining teeth to shift, causing crowding or gapping and an uneven or misaligned bite.

Chewing and clear speech may become difficult and your once beautiful smile will now have embarrassing gaps which can decrease your confidence and level of happiness.

In some cases, gingivitis and tooth decay are interrelated. As the gums weaken and get deteriorated with plaque, the teeth in which the jaw bone supports can also become vulnerable to infection and disease.

Plaque and tartar on the gums can penetrate the tooth enamel and begin to infect the tooth pulp and roots. A root canal and other, more intensive dental treatments at your dental office will be necessary to save the tooth and halt the damage to your jaw bone.

Mouth and Body Connection

Besides wreaking havoc on your oral health, periodontal disease can also negatively impact your overall health. Researchers believe that the germs in the plaque enter the bloodstream and infect or injure other organs of the body. The presence of gum disease has been linked to diabetes, heart disease, stroke, premature birth, dementia, rheumatoid arthritis and certain kinds of cancers.

Various emotional and health problems can stem from periodontal disease that can result in more expensive treatment and a potentially lower quality of life.

Gum disease is nothing to shrug off. If you notice your gums bleeding or your gums are irritated, swollen or sensitive, contact your dentist as soon as possible. The damage caused by periodontal disease can be repaired and reversed at the early stages.

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Monday, July 3, 2017

Signs That You May Need a Root Canal Treatment

A decaying tooth can destroy your gums and if not caught earlier, leads to tooth extraction. The best way to treat a decaying tooth is undergoing a root canal. During RCT, the nerve and infected pulp are taken out and the dentist cleans and seals the interior of the affected tooth. Without this procedure, the surrounding tooth's tissue will become inflamed resulting an abscess formation.

All the teeth in your mouth contain nerves and blood vessels that are located in the center passageways, or canals, deep down in the root. When your teeth form initially, these blood vessels and nerves give them all the key nutrients needed. Eventually, your teeth will no longer need these nerves and blood vessels, and this is where a dentist will need to take them out without causing any damage to your teeth. This procedure is known as a root canal. However, you may or may not be aware of whether you need the treatment, and if so, when exactly should your get it. In light of this, listed below are 6 signs indicating that it is time to visit your dentist for a RCT.

1. Severe pain - whenever you feel a toothache, which is not a definitive indicator that you require extraction or you need to undergo a root canal. It all depends on the severity of the pain. When the pain becomes unbearable enough to prevent you from eating or drinking, then you should see your dentist as soon as possible. He will check whether or not there are any cavities and if a cavity has caused the inflammation or infection in the tooth's blood vessels and nerves.

2. Swelling - If your neck or face starts to swell - it is definitely a sign that you need an RCT.

3. Gum boils - Also known as fistulous tracts, gum boils are a pimple-like lesion in the gum tissues, which becomes a drain for pus. The size of these gum boils may increase or decrease depending on the waxing and waning of the infection. You are most likely to detect a bad taste because gum boils act as a drain for pus. The lesion will also feel tender when touched and the tissue will become swollen.

4. Sensitivity to hot and cold foods - Drinking hot beverages like tea and coffee and eating cold foods like ice creams shouldn't usually a problem. However, when you constantly experience a dull ache after the consumption of these foods, then this may be a red flag.

5. Problems with biting and chewing - If you are experiencing constant discomfort and pain when biting or chewing your food, and also seeing signs of swelling in the region then you need to schedule an appointment with your dentist immediately.

6. Darkening of the tooth- this is not a sign that RCT is needed immediately unless your dentist says so. But darkening of one or more teeth happens when the tooth has experienced trauma, has been decayed, or if a filling has deteriorated.

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