Bleeding Gums Turning Your Toothpaste Red?

Bleeding gums are something that many people suffer from when people brushing their teeth vigorously or flossing their teeth. While some people may see this as a normal event, it can also be a sign of something more serious. The symptoms are very similar to those of swollen gums, and usually when one is present, so is the other. In this case, not having good oral hygiene habits may be the culprit.

This type of infection occurs when bacteria grows and forms a sticky film on the surface of the teeth and under the gumline called plaque. If not, treated it can progress to gingivitis, the top dental problem for people over 18 years old, or turn into a more serious medical condition where the symptoms may occur in the mouth.

The immune system sends white blood cells to the affected area that causes the inflammation that leads to bleeding, swelling and, in some cases, receding gums. If ignored, plaque will harden when allowed to accumulate and, periodontitis, a chronic disease can occur and result in a separation of the gums from the teeth.

Moreover, when this occurs, pockets of infection develop in the spaces created that leads to bone loss and loosening teeth which eventually causes them to fall out. Inflamed gums are usually the cause of tooth loss more so than through tooth decay. Either way you need to see a dentist at the first sign of persistent gum bleeding.

Causes of bleeding gums can be traced to neglected gums, teeth and mouth. Bleeding gums are a sign of an unhealthy mouth, because there is no known natural cause. If you are suffering from this and prefer a non-medical approach to help with your gums, try changing your eating habits such as eating three meals a day, including adequate amounts of fruits and vegetables and most importantly, if you snack between meals, avoid carbohydrates.

If you are someone who does not enjoy fruit, as an alternative it is important to maintain a good level of vitamin C in your body that helps keep the gums healthy. An additional supplement, co-enzyme Q10 is also known to be useful in some cases for people with bleeding gums.

Unfortunately, the most common reason for development of bleeding gums is simply because people do not follow a consistent routine for cleaning their teeth and gums. This involves more than brushing two or three times a day, but also the use of dental floss, mouthwash and regular cleaning of the teeth from a dentist. It is imperative that you make it a habit to practice good oral hygiene habits that are essential for preventing the accumulation of plaque, which is a serious threat to the gums and the teeth.

Top 10 Toothbrush Cleaning Methods

From the time we are able to securely hold a toothbrush in our hand we are taught by our parents how to brush our teeth. If we couldn’t perform the task very well our parents would brush our teeth for us to ensure the healthiness of our teeth and gums. Afterwards, our toothbrush may have been placed alongside those of our siblings or even our parents in an open container where a bacterium collects on its bristles.

One has to marvel at the toothbrush. The first toothbrush that resembles what we use today had its beginnings in China in the late 1400s. It was comprised of stiff hairs from a hog’s neck and attached to a bamboo stick. Now, soft bristles on the “head” of a handle used along with toothpaste to brush off plaque and massage our gums. For the most part, it seems the toothbrush is only used to eliminate leftover food from teeth. However, it is a major deterrent of gingivitis (gum disease), the prevention of cavities and periodontal disease which is a cause of at least one-third of adult tooth loss.

Many dentists believe that soft-bristled toothbrushes are the most effective to use since the firmer bristles can damage tooth enamel and irritate the gums. In fact, the tips of hard bristles are like sharp tips that may cause nicks in the gum, allowing bacteria to enter the bloodstream. The soft bristles are considered the most safe and comfortable especially with consideration given to how vigorously you brush your teeth.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, even after brushing and then rinsing your toothbrush contaminated and potentially pathogenic organisms remain on the bristles. We’ve all had lessons on how to brush our teeth, but very few lessons in toothbrush cleaning. Here are some suggestions on how to clean and take care of your toothbrush:

• If you keep your toothbrush in a toothbrush protector, ensure it is dry before using the toothbrush protector. Failure to do so may lead to the development of mold on the bristles. Use a toothbrush holder that has holes. This will help with ventilation to prevent mold.

• Wash your hands before handling your toothbrush.

• Limit the number of brushes you keep in an open container because they rub together and may spread germs.

• Wash your toothbrush before and after every use by holding it under running water and rubbing your thumb over it forcefully for five to ten seconds.

• Deep clean your toothbrush by occasionally placing it in the top rack (any other location, it may melt) of your dishwasher using your normal dishwasher soap.

• Be mindful to replace your toothbrush every three to four months, this pertains to electric brushes also.

• Always use toothpaste; it helps in keeping your brush clean.

• To disinfect your toothbrush, you can store it in a 3% Hydrogen Peroxide solution (change daily, because it turns into water in a matter of hours).

• In a small cup place your toothbrush and an alcohol based mouthwash, and stir for about thirty seconds. The alcohol in the mouthwash will kill off most bacteria.

• Consider purchasing a UV (Ultraviolet light) toothbrush cleaner. It is safe and automatically shuts off once the cleaning mode is complete.

Toothbrush cleaning is something we sometimes take for granted. We use it on a daily basis and place it back in its container not giving a thought to the amount of bacteria floating around in our residence and then how much of it actually finds a place on our exposed toothbrush. These tips not only provide helpful information, but will make you more cognizant on the importance of toothbrush cleaning and how your toothbrush can affect your overall heath more than you realize.

Suffering From Dental Phobia?

Do you suffer from anxiety at the thought of having to go to the dentist? A number of adults experience some type of dental phobia or anxiety when anticipating an upcoming office appointment with their provider. Many of them will only seek treatment when they have an emergency, such as a toothache or abscess and many may neglect necessary oral procedures unless they are forced to go.

Most dental clients report being more concerned about invasive procedures, such as oral surgery, rather than the less intensive measures such as dental cleanings and x-rays. This article will discuss the most common reasons people have for their feelings of dental phobia.

• Personal Experience: is the most common reason person developing dental fears. Their dental fear began after a traumatic, difficult or painful experience with the dentist. In addition to the phobia of being in a dentist chair, clients report their phobia also depended on how the dentist treated them. For example, if the dentist was impersonal, uncaring or cold, clients’ state because of the dentist’s demeanor it added to their anxiety. In other situations, some clients failed to develop dental fear if they perceived the dentist to be warm and caring.

• Dental fear may also develop as clients hear about others’ traumatic experiences or negative views of dentists. This not only pertains to having pain while receiving treatment, but also being embarrassed by insensitive remarks made by some providers or the delivery of bad news regarding their dental care or oral hygiene. Clients have also been known to feel anxiety because of the sights, sounds and smell of a dentist office.

• Helplessness and Loss of Control: If a client believes they have no way of influencing a negative event, they will experience helplessness which leads to fear. For example, the belief that the dentist will stop if the client gives a signal will lessen their feelings of fear or not having any control over the situation. Basically, the anxiety is the belief that the client is at the mercy of the dentist because they do not know what to expect, they are not familiar with the procedure and can’t observe what is being done inside their mouth in case they want to get involved to stop it. The client experiences an overwhelming sense of not being in control which causes anxiety.

Dental phobia can have widespread consequences on a person’s life. Not only does their dental health suffer, but dental phobia may lead to anxiety and depression. Due to their embarrassment over their teeth, clients may avoid socializing with friends and family and may avoid working jobs which involve extensive contact with the public.

Combinations of behavioral and pharmacological techniques are used to relax the client during office visits. Behavioral strategies include positive reinforcement, show and tell techniques which explain the procedure and then show the client the instruments that will be used and the sights, sounds and smells associated with their use in their dental treatment. Other strategies include relaxation and distraction techniques such as listening to music or watching movies.

Pharmacological techniques consist of mild sedation to general anesthesia and can be used in conjunction with the behavioral techniques. While the sedatives may help clients feel calmer and sometimes drowsy during their dental procedure, the client is still conscious and able to communicate with the dental staff. There are several ways to deal with dental phobia it just boils down to what you are comfortable with and of course if your dental provider can offer this type of assistance to you.

Personal Dental Care: What Are Your Secret Weapons To Save Your Smile

The primary aim of personal dental care is to prevent cavities from forming in the teeth. In order for you to prevent cavities and maintain a healthy set of teeth, you need to remove plaque, a transparent layer of bacteria that stays on the surface of your teeth.

Some effective ways to prevent plaque from forming is to brush your teeth at least twice a day and floss at least once a day. Brushing your teeth will help stimulate your gums and in turn keep them healthy and less susceptible to gum diseases.

Choose The Right Toothpaste Toothpastes are typically made of detergents, abrasives and foaming agents. The most common active ingredient in toothpaste is fluoride. Fluoride is the component of the toothpaste that is responsible for preventing cavities from forming.

When choosing what toothpaste to buy, make sure that it has a great amount of fluoride to keep your mouth cavity-free. Studies say that 1 out of 10 people has a tendency to accumulate tartar rapidly. What is tartar? It is actually plaque that is difficult to remove and damaging because it is already in hardened form.

There are anti-tartar toothpastes and mouthwashes available in the market today which can help prevent tartar formation. Another great tip for preventing the formation of tartar is brushing the teeth located near the salivary glands.

For individuals that seem to have teeth which are sensitive to pressure, cold and heat, there are toothpastes specially made for sensitive teeth.

However, a visit to the dentist may be most appropriate so that the dentist can assess whether the sensitivity of the teeth may lead to a serious problem such as nerve inflammation or severe cavity.

Learn How To Floss Although brushing is considered to be the most important part in the personal dental care routine, it doesn’t actually have the ability to remove the plaque and food particles between the teeth, under the gum line or within braces.

A dental floss is the weapon to get rid of the above mentioned teeth and mouth “pests”.Flossing can be done at least once a day.

There are actually different kinds of flosses and these depend on the space that a person has in between his or her teeth. Most dentists would usually suggest unwaxed floss because it is easier to glide through narrow spaces.

However, recent studies have discovered that there is actually no significant difference in the effectiveness among the different kinds of dental flosses. When flossing your teeth, you should be very careful so that you can avoid injuring your gums.

Remember, gums are very sensitive and they can bleed easily. Never force the floss under the gums; just curve the floss around the edge of your tooth and form a letter “c” then glide the floss up and down the side of each tooth. Do not forget to floss the back sides of your teeth as well.

All in all, maintaining your very own personal dental care routine can be easy, as long as you have enough willingness and determination to achieve a great set of pearly whites.

If you are one of the many people who don’t really give much attention to your teeth, don’t wait until you experience awful dental-related problems such as toothache, bad breath(halitosis) or bleeding gums.

Dental Care: Are Your Gums Placing You At Risk For Heart Disease?

Gingivitis (gum disease) and the advanced stage, periodontitis, is one of the most common infections of the mouth and occurs more often than the common cold. Symptoms include bleeding gums or pus between the teeth, destroying the bone that supports the teeth leading to tooth loss. Research identified the accumulation of gum disease as a risk factor for cardiovascular disease. Early warning signs of heart disease are less obvious than those that indicate that there is a problem with the gums. Now, doctors have to manage the disease with the hope of reducing the risk that might occur in the other.

Any time there is bleeding in the mouth, bacteria can enter the bloodstream and travel to the heart. The bacterium that causes gum disease is associated with heart disease. The common risk factor in both cardiovascular and periodontal disease is inflammation. While the formation of blood clots is an important defense against cuts and bruises it become a serious problem if it occurs in the heart.

How Does Bacteria Affect The Heart?
The theory is that bacteria in the gums have the ability to travel throughout the body. Once the bacterium enters the bloodstream, it sticks to the inside of the arteries in the heart. This may lead to irritation as the body’s defense system tries to protect the area through the use of cholesterol (as a scab or plaque). The result is that the artery becomes narrowed as a “scab” forms. Sometimes the scab closes the blood flow to the heart, which generates pain in the chest as the heart struggles to get enough oxygen to keep beating. In some cases, the plaque will flake off and shut off the blood flow to the heart. If this happens inside the muscle of the heart, a heart attack will occur. In fact, it has been learned that the degree of gum disease is a better predictor of a heart attack than cholesterol levels.

What Can You Do?
The threat of periodontal disease and cardiovascular disease is serious. If in doubt,

  • Visit a periodontist and a full mouth periodontal evaluation, including X-rays for the detection of periodontal disease. If you have a family history of chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease or diabetes you should consider selecting a periodontist as their primary care dentist. To increase the likelihood of early diagnosis, the visit is crucial because patients are often asked about any heart conditions and family history.
  • Periodontal disease can be easily avoided by brushing and cleaning between teeth with floss or toothpicks. However, brushing and flossing alone cannot cure periodontitis and it is very difficult to stop once it starts and is usually painless. The first sign of periodontal disease is bleeding gums, the last sign of periodontal disease is no teeth.
  • Make regular visits to your dentist to help reduce your risk of periodontitis. Proper dental care includes many heart-healthy recommendations, such as smoking cessation and a healthy diet. Good dental hygiene is essential to achieve and maintain optimal health.
  • Due to a procedure approved by the FDA using the LANAP (Laser Assisted New Attachment Procedure), which is an alternative to traditional surgery of the gum. The laser eliminates harmful bacteria and diseased tissue in the gum by a laser light that passes between the gums and teeth. Patients do not hear or feel it – except for a little heat. The LANAP reduces pain and recovery time associated with traditional surgery of the gum.

Brushing teeth is a good reason to help reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes. With heart disease being identified as the number one killer of people in the world, claiming upward of 17 million people each year. The usual culprits share responsibility: smoking, obesity and high cholesterol levels are not only the most obvious risks, but now gum disease has been added as a risk factor to consider. It seems now that no matter if you are in shape or appear to be healthy, gum disease can affect your overall health more than you know.

Dental Care: Is Teeth Whitening Safe?

Physical attractiveness is very important and is often associated with having bright and clean white teeth. Because there are so many teeth whitening products and procedures on the market offered by professionals and over the counter products, of course, the concern is how safe is it to whiten your teeth?

As with many medical procedures, dental work being no different it’s important to always consult with your dentist before undergoing teeth whitening. Since this procedure varies among people, due to the condition of their teeth and other circumstances, the advice of a dentist may be valuable to assist you in making a decision on the appropriate whitening method for you. It is your responsibility to know the facts surrounding teeth whitening to ensure safety and credibility for your dental care needs.

Research and clinical studies indicate that whitening teeth under the supervision of your dental provider is safe for the teeth and gums. There is no information that states whitening affects tooth structure, enamel, fillings or restorations.

Some people may experience tooth sensitivity during the treatment. These symptoms usually disappear within one or two days. The dentist will apply a desensitizer to help reduce sensitivity to the teeth. You can also use specially made toothpaste for sensitive teeth to assist in alleviating the pain.

• There have been some concerns raised by physicians and consumers about the risk of bleaching agents that may cause cancer. However, studies have shown that the concentration of carbamide peroxide in the product does not cause cancer to the mouth or to gum tissue. In fact, there is an agent in the saliva that seems to offset the amount of peroxide emitted by the whitening agents.

• Consumers have expressed concern and fear that the whitening products may cause tooth enamel to wear down or become damaged. Medical experts say that more harm is done to tooth enamel by soft drinks and fruit juices than teeth bleaching products.

• Another issue discussed was in reference to some patients being apprehensive about whether the nerve endings of the teeth can be affected by whitening products. Research on this issue is still in its early stages and has to be studied at longer intervals after the procedure is performed in order to gather the appropriate data.

Despite these concerns, there is still little evidence to support that the procedure is unsafe. The products are formulated to be gentle and safe. However, a word of caution, there are side effects to teeth whitening. If the user leaves the product on beyond the allotted time or chooses to bleach their teeth after every meal instead of adhering to the usage recommendations, the risk of using the product includes damaging dental enamel, developing cavities and tooth sensitivity.

Dental Care: Having The Perfect Smile, Is It Worth It?

A person’s smile is one of the first facial expressions we see and appreciate. Because when someone smiles it reflects their personality, confidence, social skills, physical attractiveness, and oral hygiene, their personal and professional success. Obtaining and maintaining the perfect smile has become an important societal aspiration since consumers help support a 14 billion dollar teeth whitening business which is only one portion of the cosmetic dentistry industry.

As a means to feel good about ourselves or just to improve something that may be already sufficient we make use of teeth whitening, crowns, implants, porcelain veneers, and Lumineers. This article will discuss the differences between getting the perfect smile utilizing crowns, veneers and Lumineers.

Dental Crowns, also known as ”caps” are coverings that fit over the teeth. In the past, crowns were the first line of defense in treating dental problems, but veneers are now the more popular choice among dentists. The major difference between crowns, veneers and Lumineers is the amount of tooth structure that is removed. Veneers are a popular choice in most situations because very little of the tooth is eliminated as compared to crowns.

The tooth requiring a crown is grounded down to a stump or peg which allows adequate space for the crown which measures about 2 millimeters or more. The crown is cemented over the stump as a means to restoring the tooth to its normal shape, size and functionality. Further, the crown is able to support a tooth with a large filling; it is used to attach a bridge and protects a weak tooth from breaking or restoring one that’s already broken (in these situations a root canal is recommended before the crown is placed).

Although, cement is used to seat the crown, it can be removed, repaired, and replaced easily with minimal stress on the tooth. A crown is much stronger than a veneer and once a crown is used, the tooth will always require a dental crown. Crowns and veneers can be used for cosmetic purposes and to replace rotted or trauma damaged teeth. The average life span of a porcelain crown is 10 years, but with proper dental care they may last as long as 30 years.

Veneers are described as wafer-thin dental porcelain laminate measuring 1 millimeter in thickness or less and are seen as a ‘conservative crown’. This is because a dentist has to file down about .5 millimeters of tooth to allow space for the new veneer. Unlike the crown, the veneer is cemented onto the visible portion of the remaining tooth structure and cannot be removed. If any type damage occurs such as, chipping, the entire veneer will need replacing. A benefit of using this procedure is that the material is resistant to staining and is not susceptible to decay.

If a client has discolored, chipped, misaligned or worn teeth or there is a need to straighten and lengthen their teeth, veneers are used as a means to improve their smile and bite. They are purely cosmetic and make the tooth look as though it is “perfect” as opposed to a dental crown where the restored tooth may appear bulky or not integrate very with the rest of the client’s teeth.

It is not recommended that porcelain veneers be placed on teeth that have decay or if there is gum disease present. The client’s dentist must treat these conditions before veneers can be considered or successfully placed. Be mindful that grinding down naturally healthy teeth enamel possibly down to the dentin (bone like substance that makes up the teeth) increases the risk of nerve damage and the frequency of root canals. Tooth sensitivity also occurs after the procedure. Veneers should last a lifetime and as in the case of crowns, once a tooth is prepared for veneers, the client will always have to use them.

Lumineers is a brand name product and there really isn’t much of a difference between them and porcelain veneers except the size which is described as being as thin as contact lenses, about 0.3 millimeters. An impression of the client’s teeth is made and shipped to a lab. A custom set of veneers are crafted from the impression. The affected teeth are slightly etched to prepare for placement and are bonded onto the teeth. The client experiences the least amount of discomfort because there are no shots, drilling or pain. The thinness of the material allows for placement on the teeth without adding a “bulky” look to them.

Additionally, Lumineers are not permanent and can be reversed. Because of their thinness and versatility it makes it possible to apply them over existing bridgework and crowns. Clients do not have to replace previously completed dental work to be able to enjoy the benefits which are said to last up to 20 years. This procedure allows a client to obtain a healthy, naturally permanent white smile.

Many consumers take advantage of cosmetic dentistry out of concern for their smile and most importantly, how it may affect them personally and professionally.The procedures when performed, if not for a dental issue are usually known for use as self enhancement and to reinforce the belief that a better smile leads to more success whether financially or socially.

The search for the extreme smile is it worth it? Yes, because we are a society that thrives on beauty. It reminds me of a quote, author unknown, “A smile happens in a flash, but its memory can last a lifetime.” It is important to maintain a healthy and beautiful smile because it’s not only for you, but for others as well. For more dental resources visit my dental store at:
dental store.

Obtaining Dental Care Coverage If You’re UnInsured

If you’re uninsured, under insured or even unable to afford seeing a dentist, there is a chance that you can obtain dental check-ups and treatment for free. Most of the free programs offered appear to only target children because research has shown that dental care still remains the most common unmet need for children. However, there are free programs available that provide oral care to adults also.

Thousands flock for assistance at free dental care clinics that are often overwhelmed because of the high demand for their services. Some people even though they may have insurance or a dental plan will still skip going to the dentist for whatever reason. This decision can lead to other serious health problems within the body such as diabetes and heart disease. Dental care sometimes is seen as a luxury and not much emphasis is placed on it as it is for example, health care needs.

Some of the problems related to people not being able to obtain oral checkups are not only because they are uninsured but because of distance, it’s not affordable, those affected are unaware that free dental care is available and last, there are those that are just not willing to go unless their dental issue becomes problematic for them. This article will discuss how to go about finding resources that can provide dental care for free or at a discount.

• Obtain Internet access at your local library if you cannot afford it at home. Most people are not paying for home delivery of their local paper which would be the first place where notice of free dental care occurring in their community will surface. Additionally, a copy of the daily newspaper is kept at the library for patrons to read anyway. The Internet will allow searches in neighboring communities where you can obtain free or discounted dental care such as, access to local clinics or dental mobile stations that may be available in different areas than where you are located.

• Check your state agencies for clinics that provide dental care or even area dentists that may provide free services. Because of the economy, some state run agencies are finding it hard to keep their doors open and sometimes neighborhood dentists have been known to step in and volunteer their time providing essential services such as, cleanings, fillings, extractions, root canals and other services.

• Dental insurance is an option, but usually this is something that has to be paid through an employer backed insurance plan and it can be expensive. The other option is signing up for a low cost discount dental plan which is an alternative to dental insurance. These discount plans can provide discounts from 10% to 60% for dental care services. These types of plans have a large number of dentists in their network which means there shouldn’t be any difficulty in locating a dentist in your community. Plus, many of these discount plans offer discounted services on vision, chiropractic, prescription and other added discounts.

The need for free dental care has only increased during the economic recession. Understandably, as more families choose which essential expenditures are a necessity, going to the dentist is usually placed on the back burner. Dental care is without a doubt proving to be an important part of overall health and should not continue to go unnoticed. Good oral health is serious for everyone regardless of their age. Discount dental plans are an alternative to dental insurance and can provide you a more economical outcome for your dental needs.