Monday, October 28, 2013

Tobacco and Dental Health

How Does Smoking Lead to Gum Disease?

Smoking and other tobacco products can lead to gum disease by affecting the attachment of bone and soft tissue to your teeth. More specifically, it appears that smoking interferes with the normal function of gum tissue cells. This interference makes smokers more susceptible to infections, such as periodontal disease, and also seems to impair blood flow to the gums - which may affect wound healing.

Do Pipe and Cigar Smoking Cause Dental Problems?

Yes, like cigarettes, pipes and cigars do lead to oral health problems. According to results of a 23-year long study published in the Journal of the American Dental Association, cigar smokers experience tooth loss and alveolar bone loss (bone loss within the jawbone that anchors teeth) at rates equivalent to those of cigarette smokers. Pipe smokers also have a similar risk of tooth loss as cigarette smokers. Beyond these risks, pipe and cigar smokers are still at risk for oral and pharyngeal (throat) cancers -- even if they don't inhale -- and other oral consequences -- bad breath, stained teeth, and increased risk of periodontal (gum) disease.

Are Smokeless Tobacco Products Safer?

No. Like cigars and cigarettes, smokeless tobacco products (for example, snuff and chewing tobacco) contain at least 28 chemicals that have been shown to increase the risk of oral cancer and cancer of the throat and esophagus. In fact, chewing tobacco contains higher levels of nicotine than cigarettes, making it harder to quit than cigarettes. And one can of snuff delivers more nicotine than over 60 cigarettes.
Smokeless tobacco can irritate your gum tissue, causing it to recede or pull away from your teeth. Once the gum tissue recedes, your teeth roots become exposed, creating an increased risk of tooth decay. Exposed roots are also more sensitive to hot and cold or other irritants, making eating and drinking uncomfortable.
In addition, sugars, which are often added to enhance the flavor of smokeless tobacco, can increase your risk for tooth decay. A study published in the Journal of the American Dental Association showed that chewing tobacco users were four times more likely than nonusers to develop tooth decay.

Smokeless tobacco also typically contains sand and grit, which can wear down your teeth. 

1-877-Dr Teeth- (360) 740-6212
Town Center Dental
3 Locations - Chehalis, Wa -- Rochester, Wa -- Rainier, Or

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Oral health during pregnancy...

What to expect when expecting you have so much to think about during pregnancy, 
but don’t overlook your oral health, which can be affected by the hormonal
changes you will experience during this time. For example, women are more likely to
develop gingivitis during pregnancy. Gingivitis is an infection of the gingivae (gums) that can
cause swelling and tenderness. Your gums also may bleed a little when you brush or floss. Left
untreated, gingivitis can affect the supporting tissues that hold your teeth in place. Your dentist
may recommend more frequent cleanings to prevent gingivitis.

Sometimes lumps appear along the gum line and between teeth. These swellings are harmless,
but they bleed easily and are characterized by a red, raw-looking mulberrylike surface.
Although these growths are called “pregnancy tumors,” they are not cancerous. 
They usually go away on their own after pregnancy, but they can be removed 
under a local anesthetic if they bother you.

You should continue to see your dentist during pregnancy for oral examinations and professional
teeth cleaning. Tell your dentist that you are pregnant and about any changes you have
noticed in your oral health. Also, be sure to let your dentist know about
any medications or supplements you are taking. Your dentist may need to
 use or prescribe medication as part of your treatment. 
Some medications are considered safe for limited use during
pregnancy and some should not be used at all. For example, if you develop an infection, 
yourdentist might prescribe penicillin or amoxicillin. 
However, pregnant women should not be treated with tetracycline 
because it can stain the fetus’ developing teeth. Once they erupt, the
teeth may look gray or brown permanently as a result of these stains. 
Your dentist or physician can talk with you about
 medications that are safe to use during pregnancy.
Although radiography (x-rays) often can be delayed until after your baby is born, 
your dentist may need to obtain a radiograph as part of your dental treatment.
 To minimize your exposure and that of the fetus to x-rays, your dentist will cover 
your abdomen with a protective apron
and place a thyroid collar over your throat. Talk with your dentist or 
physician about any concerns you may have about your treatment. 
Good daily care is key to your oral health. To
help prevent caries (tooth decay) and gum disease, brush your teeth thoroughly
 twice a day with fluoridetoothpaste to remove plaque. 
Be sure to clean between your teeth daily
with floss or another interdental cleaner. Ask your dentist or hygienist to
show you how to brush and floss correctly. When choosing oral care products,
look for those that display the American Dental Association’s Seal of Acceptance, 
your assurance that they have met ADA criteria for safety and effectiveness.

Frequent snacking may increase your risk of developing tooth decay, which is caused by
plaque, a sticky film of bacteria that forms constantly on teeth. The bacteria convert sugar and
starch that remain in the mouth after eating to acid that attacks tooth enamel. The longer the
sugars remain in your mouth, the longer the acids attack. 
After repeated attacks, tooth decay can result.

Your oral health is an important part of your overall health, and untreated dental disease can
be harmful to you and your baby. Be sure to include your oral health in your daily self-care
routine and keep your dentist informed of any changes in your oral health during pregnancy. 

1-877-Dr Teeth- (360) 740-6212
Town Center Dental
3 Locations - Chehalis, Wa -- Rochester, Wa -- Rainier, Or