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Archive for July, 2015

Gingivitis and Your Overall Health

Thursday, July 23rd, 2015

dentist ChicagoIf you develop gingivitis—the mildest form of gum disease – and you don’t get treatment from your dentist in a timely fashion, you may not just be jeopardizing your oral health but your overall well-being, too.

Patients can recognize the signs of gingivitis merely by monitoring their gums for any noticeable changes, such as bleeding while brushing or flossing, redness or swelling in the gum tissue. If you notice any of these symptoms, you should schedule an evaluation at a dental office.

A dentist can treat gingivitis effectively with simply a thorough professional cleaning. This will reduce the presence of the bacteria that cause the inflammation implicated in gingivitis, allowing the gums to return to a healthier state.

That inflammation won’t just harm your smile, either. Research has suggested a correlation between periodontal disease and a variety of other diseases throughout the body, such as heart disease, diabetes and some forms of cancer. So, patients who ignore signs of gum disease may suffer some serious health consequences beyond the oral cavity as a result.

Furthermore, if gum disease progresses to a more advanced form known as periodontitis, the interventions needed to address it become more invasive. For example, the patient may need to undergo root planing and scaling, a more intense form of cleaning in which bacteria is removed from the area between the gums and the tooth’s root. The root may need to be smoothed over to remove spots where bacteria could collect.

In the most advanced forms of periodontal disease, patients may need to undergo surgical procedures, such as gum grafting, to replace gum tissue that has receded.

Don’t ignore gingivitis or postpone treatment if your symptoms are not very severe. Doing so can compromise your smile and even have negative health effects elsewhere in your body. We encourage patients who have noticed any signs of gingivitis to contact our office and arrange for an evaluation by one of our skilled practitioners, so call our caring team today.



The Electronic Toothbrush: A Great Weapon Against Plaque

Wednesday, July 15th, 2015

dentist Chicago LoopPatients who want to do a better job of removing plaque may want to consider switching to an electronic toothbrush, especially if your dentist has recommended it to you.

The heads of electronic brushes rotate and oscillate as they move across the teeth. This motion is more efficient at clearing away plaque and the harmful bacteria it contains. Patients who use such brushes can get by with a little less effort since the brush itself is doing more of the work.

Many higher-end electronic brushes also have a built-in timer that can help patients make sure that they’re brushing for a long enough period of time in each session. Your dentist has probably told you to brush for around two minutes each time, and an electronic toothbrush can help patients meet that goal.

These brushes may also have different settings that help massage the gums and are geared for sensitive teeth.

While the features of electronic brushes have advantages for all patients, they can be particularly beneficial for children who may be impatient with brushing and less thorough than their parents.

Although electronic brushes do require less effort on the patient’s part, you still must use proper brushing technique in order to get the maximum benefits from an electronic toothbrush. Be sure that you are angling the brush about 45 degrees along the gum line in order to remove as much plaque as possible.

If you have any questions about which electric toothbrush will be best for you, ask our dental team for recommendations.

Be sure that you’re caring for your electronic toothbrush as recommended by a dentist. Just like you would swap out a standard toothbrush every six months, you’ll need to change the head on your electronic brush with similar frequency. Additionally, you’ll need to be sure that you keep the brush charged adequately so that you can use it every morning and evening.

An electronic toothbrush can be an effective weapon in your battle against plaque. Talk to one of our knowledgeable practitioners to learn more about this important tool by calling the staff at ORA Dental Studio today!



What starts a toothache?

Friday, July 3rd, 2015

dentist 60654Toothaches can cause patients significant pain and disruption to the normal routine, but fortunately effective treatments are available to address the underlying cause of the toothache. It’s important for patients to recognize the symptoms of a toothache so that they can seek appropriate treatment from a dentist, as well.

Patients who are experiencing any of the following possible toothache symptoms should consult with a dentist:

  • Significant, persistent pain in the tooth that is often sharp or throbbing – this is the main indicator of a toothache.
  • Noticeable puss at the site of the discomfort – this may indicate the presence of an abscess, which not only causes pain but can increase the patient’s risk of developing a systemic infection.
  • Swelling around the problematic tooth – this also may suggest the presence of some sort of infection.
  • Fever – This is yet another sign of infection.

The dentist can determine the cause and perform the necessary intervention to give the patient relief from symptoms. The following issues can cause toothaches:

  • Cavities – a toothache may be an early indicator that tooth decay is present. If so, the patient may get some relief if the decayed material is removed and the cavity filled.
  • Abscesses – These are infections that reach the roots or pulp of the teeth and are associated with severe discomfort. Depending on the degree of infection, a patient with an abscess may need to undergo a root canal procedure or have the targeted tooth extracted.
  • Damaged teeth – a tooth that has been cracked due to some sort of injury or trauma has the potential to cause pain for patients.
  • Gum disease – This condition can cause toothaches.
  • Bruxism – Patients who unknowingly grind their teeth can develop toothaches as a result.

Toothaches are generally an indicator that some oral health problem has developed and dental treatment is likely necessary. If you develop tooth pain, don’t postpone scheduling an appointment to be evaluated. Our expert practitioners can help you reduce your risk of more serious consequences from a toothache if you act quickly.

If you’re suffering from a toothache, call one of our office locations today to make an appointment with our friendly team!