Bleeding Gums: Causes and Symptoms

You may be brushing or flossing one day and notice a little pink on your toothbrush or floss or in the sink. It might cause you to wonder why this is happening and what has caused bleeding gums. Knowing the causes and symptoms of bleeding gums will help you learn more about bleeding gums in general and bleeding gums treatment options.

Bleeding of the gums is sometimes referred to as gingival bleeding, and it may occur during brushing or flossing. Certain dental conditions cause bleeding gums and make them more sensitive and prone to bleeding. The truth is that some causes are more serious than others and some warrant a trip to your dentist while others can be managed by you at home.

Causes

First, you should know that bleeding gums is not routine or normal and should always be cause for concern. If left unchecked, it may be hazardous to your mouth and dental health. The only time it’s considered normal and usual is if you’ve started a new flossing or brushing routine, but it should only go on for about a week or so. One cause may be due to the early onset of Gingivitis. Take note if your gums bleed after daily flossing and report it to your dentist. If left untreated, Gingivitis can develop into more pronounced problems such as periodontitis (inflammation around the tooth) and advanced periodontitis. Additional causes of bleeding gums are as follows:

  • Brushing too hard or your toothbrush isn’t soft enough
  • New flossing routine
  • Taking certain medications
  • Have inflamed gums because you’re pregnant (Hormonal changes that occur during pregnancy can cause the gums to be more sensitive.)
  • Have dentures that don’t fit well
  • Inadequate plaque removal
  • Bleeding or swollen gums can be a warning sign of type 1 or type 2 diabetes
  • Vitamin deficiencies
  • Bleeding disorders like hemophilia and leukemia
  • Stress or poor diet

It’s in your best interest to determine the cause and figure out if it’s a simple fix or a sign of a health condition you need to get checked out and address.

Symptoms

There are also symptoms of bleeding gums to be aware of so you can take action quickly if you notice these signs. For instance, inflamed and irritated gums when brushing or flossing may be gingivitis, which is the first stage of gum disease. Gingivitis is usually a painless condition and bleeding gums may be the only symptom. You should also look out for symptoms such as, swollen, red, or tender gums, persistent bad breath or taste, teeth that are loose, and a change in the way your teeth fit when you bite. You should also be on the lookout for mouth sores or lumps on your gums.

Periodontal disease (periodontitis) can occur when gingivitis becomes advanced. Periodontitis can cause your teeth to loosen or fall out. It’s an infection of the gums, jawbone, and supportive tissues that connect your teeth and gums. Signs and symptoms of periodontitis include, swollen or puffy gyms, bleeding gums, bad breath, and gums that feel tender when touched.

Treatment Options

The first step you should take when managing bleeding gums is to practice good dental hygiene daily. You must commit to brushing twice per day using a soft toothbrush and floss at least once per day. You might also consider using an electric toothbrush that can help you to clean your gum line more easily than a manual toothbrush. Proper brushing and flossing can remove plaque from your gum line and reduce your risk of developing periodontal disease.

There are preventative actions you can take at home as part of your overall dental routine. Brushing your teeth daily should be automatic for you. Brushing should be done in a circular motion, for two minutes, spending an equal amount of time in each part of the mouth. Floss at least once per day and follow the curve of your teeth to avoid damaging the gums.

Dental visits are an excellent way to take preventative action against bleeding gums. Dr. Kevin F. Postol will perform an oral exam and can identify any signs of gum disease early on before it progresses. The cleaning entails removing plaque from your teeth in hard-to-reach areas. If you notice any of the signs and symptoms of bleeding gums or that a health condition is causing them then it’s best to schedule an appointment, outside of the recommended twice per year professional cleanings. Dr. Postol can review with you the best ways to brush and floss your teeth and check for signs of gingivitis.

Even if you have reached the advanced stages of gum disease, there is still time to fix the damage. Dr. Postol may perform scaling or root planning to treat advanced periodontitis. The goal and what these procedures will do is to remove the bacteria or plaque that caused the gum disease in the first place.

Next Steps

Regular dental visits are essential for early detection of gum disease, which will give you a better chance of reversing the damage already done. We are one of the best around when it comes to dental care and addressing bleeding gums. Do you have bleeding gums that won’t go away and want an opinion about what may be causing the bleeding? We invite you to schedule an appointment with Dr. Postol for bleeding gums treatment today.

At Kevin Postol, DDS, Family and Cosmetic Dentistry, our caring dental team is experienced in all areas of dentistry. We offer restorative and cosmetic dentistry, using state-of-the-art dental techniques and a gentle touch to improve your general health and quality of life.

Each time you enter our dental office, you will be welcomed warmly and sincerely. We understand that choosing a new dentist can be a challenge, leaving you with some uncertain feelings. If the value you place on your teeth and health coincides with our beliefs in quality dentistry and the prevention of dental disease, a mutually rewarding relationship should evolve for both parties. Contact us to schedule an appointment today!

What is Periodontal Therapy?

While the vast majority of patients understand the dangers caries pose to their oral health, there’s less understanding of periodontal disease – a condition that affects the gums.

You can think of periodontitis as a more serious and entrenched form of gingivitis. While the latter tends to affect only the superficial gum tissues, periodontitis goes deeper and can damage the roots of teeth, and even the jawbone. Furthermore, the inflammation it produces is systemic, meaning that it can lead to serious health issues elsewhere in the body, including the heart.

Fortunately, periodontal therapy can help. The goal of these treatments is to eliminate disease-causing bacteria and return your mouth to normality.

Periodontal Therapy Procedures

Periodontal therapy isn’t a single procedure. Instead, it’s a bundle of interventions, both surgical and non-surgical, that aim to address the underlying cause of the periodontal disease.

Pocket Reduction Procedures

During the course of periodontal infections, the gum can develop “pockets” – small flaps of gum that pull away from the teeth.

Pockets are problematic because food can become trapped inside them easily, leading to further infections and preventing healing. Pocket reduction surgery seeks to reduce or eliminate the size of the gap between tooth and gum, preventing recurrence.

Gum Grafting

Gum grafting is a procedure that involves taking tissue from one part of the mouth and surgically implanting them in another. Typically, dentists will use gum grafting to extend gums in patients with severe recession, but it can also be a powerful tool in the fight against periodontal disease. Gum grafts can extend the reach of the gum, allowing it to create a tighter collar around the tooth, preventing future bacterial infiltration.

Ridge Augmentation

Ridge augmentation is a technique that helps to reverse depressions in the gum line resulting from trauma, tooth loss, and decay. The soft tissue version of the procedure takes tissues from other parts of the mouth, similar to a gum graft, and stitches them in the target location. The synthetic version uses grafts which act as scaffolds, encouraging the regrowth of the surrounding tissue.

Crown Lengthening

Crown lengthening surgery is a popular procedure that involves reducing the area of the crown covered by gum and bone tissue. Patients get it to make their smiles appear more symmetrical or less gummy or to help with the fitting and securing of new dental crowns.

Periodontal Laser Treatments

Periodontal laser treatments are a range of therapies that use non-surgical laser-based techniques to excise infected tissue and restore your gum line to health. They involve pointing a beam of light at the affected tissue (including below the gum line), sweeping out bacteria, and creating a barrier between healthy and diseased tissue. The benefits are improved healing times and less gum shrinkage compared to traditional therapies.

Scaling and Root Planing

Scaling and root planing use dental instruments to remove plaque and tartar buildup below the gumline. We use both ultrasonic instruments and hand scalers to get rid of calculus and remove bacterial buildup, providing the gum with an opportunity to heal.

Periodontal Cosmetic Surgery

Periodontal cosmetic surgery involves any treatment to enhance the appearance of the gums and surrounding tissue. Examples include many of the techniques listed here, including gum grafts and crown lengthening.

What Are The Benefits Of Periodontal Therapy?

Periodontal therapy offers a set of potent techniques. But what are the specific benefits?

A More Beautiful Smile

When it comes to beautiful smiles, the vast majority of people focus on the teeth. However, gums matter too. If you have indentations or depressions in your gum line or an undesirable tooth-to-gum ratio, then it can make you feel self-conscious. Periodontal therapy deals with these issues, restoring balance to your aesthetic.

Fresher Breath

Periodontal disease is not only incredibly painful, but it can also lead to bad breath. Bacteria beneath the surface of the gum continually churn out foul-smelling sulfurous compounds. And because they make their home below the gum line, you can’t sweep them out by cleaning your teeth.

Periodontal therapy deals with halitosis (or bad breath) by removing bacterial buildup below the gumline and preventing it from recurring in the future. Scaling and root planing combined with excellent oral hygiene foster natural healing.

Reduced Pain

Once you’ve had a periodontal infection, it can be hard to forget. The gum will often swell, and it will ache terribly. In some cases, over-the-counter painkillers are not effective.

If you have an active infection, we will take a two-pronged approach. First, we prescribe antibiotics to eliminate the infection. Then we consult with you about the best approach you can take to prevent the disease from recurring in the future.

Removal Of Plaque And Tartar Beneath The Gumline

Regular brushing removes plaque and tartar from teeth above the gum line, but it can’t address issues around the roots. Because of that, once periodontitis begins, it seldom resolves on its own.

Periodontal therapies address the cause of periodontitis by removing bacteria and their waste products below the gumline. Scaling uses physical tools to remove any calculus from the surface of teeth, leaving them healthy.

Identify Health Problems

Lastly, periodontal conditions can sometimes reveal important information about your overall state of health. It could be an early warning sign of chronic diseases such as diabetes.

Schedule An Appointment

If you have a problem with your gums, then schedule an appointment for periodontal therapy with Dr. Kevin F. Postol today. He has more than a quarter-century of experience and can help keep your mouth healthier for longer. Contact us today!

CPAP Alternatives for Sleep Apnea Treatment

Sleep apnea is a condition in which the airway becomes occluded during sleep, reducing airflow. In some patients, the blocking of the airway is partial, leading to loud snoring. In others, it can occlude entirely, activating the body’s stress response and causing the patient to startle awake to resume normal breathing.

Sleep apnea is difficult to diagnose because it occurs when a person is in an unconscious state. Often, the only sign of sleep apnea is waking up in the morning feeling groggy, as if you have not had a proper night of rest. Unfortunately, if you allow the condition to continue long-term, it can lead to several severe health issues, including problems concentrating, irregular heartbeat, headaches, and, in some extreme cases, heart attack.

Currently, CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) is a popular treatment method that seeks to manage sleep apnea symptoms and facilitate better rest. The device uses a mask connected to a pump that maintains mild positive air pressure in the airways at all times, preventing occlusion.

Generally, the therapy is the most recommended treatment option for obstructive sleep apnea patients, but it comes with some drawbacks. The main issue is the feeling of claustrophobia that many patients get when wearing the CPAP mask. Covering the mouth and nose leads to the sensation of being enclosed – not something that patients want when trying to get a restful night’s sleep. Furthermore, CPAP can lead to nasal congestion and a runny nose – an annoying side effect for a surprisingly large number of sleep apnea patients.

Alternatives To CPAP Treatment

Fortunately, several appliances can alleviate symptoms of sleep apnea for patients who can’t tolerate CPAP machines. Many of these options are non-invasive and simply insert into the mouth at night.

Dr. Kevin F. Postol offer three devices that function as CPAP alternatives: EMA, the TAP 3, and the Herbst OA. Tap 3 is a proven treatment for patients with mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea. The device works by attaching the top and bottom of the jaw via a small hook. The on-board key allows patients to adjust the guard’s position incrementally until they achieve the desired position.

The Tap 3 is famously non-invasive and has a compliance rate of around 95 percent. Patients can continue adjusting the key until the appliance is wholly closed inside their mouth,

The Herbst OA works on a similar principle but uses a set of pistons that slide within a tube instead. The device provides the user with a high degree of freedom, allowing them to move the jaw slightly while also protecting against teeth grinding. Durable elastic bands on the device prevent the jaw from flopping open during sleep (which could put them at risk of experiencing sleep apnea symptoms).

Oral appliances work by moving the lower jaw forward to ease the airflow and prevent the airway from becoming blocked by the tongue or soft palate. They fit very similarly to mouthguards, allowing you to insert and remove them whenever you like.

The Effectiveness Of CPAP Alternatives

While CPAP machines are the current go-to device for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), oral appliance therapy is also highly effective and may have greater compliance. According to data from the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, devices like TAP 3 and Herbst OA have a 40 percent success rate among patients with severe OSA and a 60 to 75 rate of success for those with mild to moderate symptoms.

Thus, Dr. Postol typically recommend oral appliance therapy for patients with mild sleep apnea over and above CPAP as a first line of treatment. CPAP alternatives are much quieter and more comfortable, and they do not rely on the maintenance of positive air pressure, which can feel upsetting to some patients.

Interestingly, even those who just snore (and don’t have sleep apnea) can benefit tremendously from oral appliances. Around 85 percent of snorers who receive this type of therapy experience quieter, higher-quality sleep.

Who Are CPAP Alternatives For?

Primarily CPAP alternatives are for patients who refuse or cannot tolerate CPAP or for whom CPAP fails. It is an excellent choice for anyone with low tolerance of nasal CPAP or who primarily wants something that they can use during travel for mild to moderate OSA (or snoring).

What Are The Side Effects Or Oral Appliance Therapy?

Oral appliance therapy is a low-risk treatment. However, you may experience some transient symptoms as you adjust the device. Because the prosthetic changes the lower jaw’s position, it is not uncommon for patients to experience some tension after wearing it for a prolonged period. For the same reason, it can also lead to sore gums and teeth.

Some symptoms are more dangerous than others. If you experience permanent changes in your bite or lose your dental crowns and bridges, you’ll need to talk to Dr. Postol as soon as possible.

Is Oral Appliance Therapy Better Than Surgery?

Surgery is widely considered the last resort for sleep apnea treatment, even though it is often touted to cure it. However, there are some drawbacks. As patients get older, the skin at the back of the throat relaxes. This natural process can occasionally cause the tongue to collapse back into the palate, negating the procedure’s effectiveness.

Most patients benefit from a combination of oral appliance therapy plus evidence-based lifestyle modifications that may improve symptoms. Appliances are useful for considerably more than half of all patients with mild to moderate OSA. It is an excellent non-invasive option.

Get Treatment For Sleep Apnea

If you believe either you or a partner has sleep apnea; please contact us for an appointment. We have more than twenty-five years of experience helping patients take back control of their sleep and we can help you too. It takes around three weeks to fabricate oral appliances for OSA, so the sooner you get help from us for your condition, the better.

Causes and Symptoms of TMJ

Everybody experiences pain in their jaw from time to time and that’s normal, but if you experience jaw pain and tightness on a regular basis, you may be suffering from a TMJ disorder. Your TMJ or temporomandibular joint connects your jaw to the temporal bones on the side of your face, and it is this joint that allows you to open and close your mouth when speaking or chewing. In some patients, issues with the TMJ can lead to pain and locking in the jaw.

It is estimated that around 25% of the population will experience TMJ disorders, many of them women between the age of 20 and 40. Every patient is different and while some people will experience mild pain that can be dealt with using simple medications, some patients experience severe pain and require more extensive TMJ treatment. If you are experiencing a lot of pain in your jaw and you think that you may be suffering from a TMJ disorder, you should schedule an appointment with Dr. Kevin F. Postol immediately. Our expert team has experience in a wide range of treatments and we will work with you to find the right TMJ treatment for you.

What Are The Symptoms Of TMJ Disorders?

Although pain is one of the most common symptoms of TMJ disorders, it affects patients in a range of different ways. Common signs of a TMJ disorder include:

  • Pain and tenderness in the jaw.
  • Pain in the temporomandibular joints (in some cases, you will only experience pain on one side of the face).
  • Pain while chewing, or difficult moving the jaw while chewing.
  • Aching around the ears or in other areas of the face.
  • Swelling around the face.
  • Stiff joints or locking, which makes it difficult to open and close your mouth when eating or speaking, especially when trying to open your mouth wide.

In some cases, patients notice a clicking or popping sound when they open and close their mouth. Lots of patients experience this clicking but they don’t have any pain or difficulty opening and closing their mouth. In this case, you may not need TMJ treatment if you are willing to live with the clicking. However, if your symptoms are more severe, it is important that you schedule an appointment to come and see us right away.

When Should You Seek Medical Advice?

Many people live with a TMJ disorder for a long time before seeking medical advice because they are unsure whether they need TMJ treatment or not. In mild cases where you only experience a clicking or popping sound, without any pain, you do not necessarily need TMJ treatment. However, if you experience regular pain in the jaw, ears, or face, you should seek help. If you have trouble opening and closing your mouth and it makes it difficult to eat or speak, that is also a sign that you may need TMJ treatment. If you start to notice any of these symptoms, schedule an appointment right away and we can recommend the right TMJ treatment for you.

What Causes TMJ Disorder?

The short answer is, we don’t know. Unfortunately, there is no clear reason why people suffer from TMJ disorder and, in most cases, it is caused by a combination of different factors. The temporomandibular joint is made up of a hinge joint that also involves sliding actions. There is cartilage and a small shock absorbing disk in between the bones to keep the movements smooth. In many patients, TMJ disorder is caused by damage to the cartilage as a result of arthritis, or the disk wearing away or moving out of alignment. Unfortunately, in a lot of cases, the causes of TMJ disorder are less clear.

If you have recently sustained a head or facial injury, the impact can cause damage to the joints and that can lead to a TMJ disorder as well. This is particularly common in people that experience whiplash.

TMJ disorder can also be caused by certain habits that people have. Clenching of the jaw or grinding of the teeth (known as bruxism) can lead to issues with tightness and pain in the jaw. People that suffer from excess stress often clench their jaws and this may be the cause of your TMJ disorder.

Risk factors for TMJ disorder

Although anybody can suffer from TMJ disorder, there are risk factors that make it more likely in certain patients.

People that suffer from rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis are more likely to develop problems with the joints in their jaw, which require TMJ treatment. Anybody that has suffered a recent jaw injury should also seek medical advice if they notice ongoing pain and stiffness. If you have a connective tissue disease, this may potentially cause problems with the temporomandibular joint as well.

Diagnosing TMJ Disorders

If you notice one or more of these symptoms and they persist for an extended period, contact us and our expert team can diagnose the issue and offer tailored TMJ treatment. There is no widely recognized method for diagnosing TMJ because the exact causes are unknown and it is often caused by a variety of factors. When you come for your appointment, our team of highly trained dental professionals will consider your symptoms and ask some simple questions about your medical history. In some cases, we may also recommend x-rays so we can examine your jaw in more detail.

Using this information, we will then recommend the best TMJ treatment for you. In many cases, changing habits like teeth grinding and taking medications to relax muscles and manage pain will be enough to deal with the issue. However, in more severe cases, we may also recommend a more advanced TMJ treatment.

Many patients live with undiagnosed TMJ disorders for a long time, and it can have a big impact on your life, making it difficult and painful to do simple everyday things, like talking and eating. But there is no need to suffer in silence because we are here to help. If you notice any of the symptoms described above, schedule an appointment with Dr. Kevin F. Postol today and we can provide the right TMJ treatment to give you the relief that you need.

Treatment Options for TMJ

TMJ disorders are a common issue that arises when there is a problem with the Temporomandibular Joint, which connects your jaw to your skull. The bones and muscles allow you to move your jaw up and down, so you can speak and chew food. Dr. Kevin F. Postol and his team of highly trained dental professionals can help to diagnose and treat TMJ disorders, so if you think that you may be suffering, schedule an appointment right away.

Symptoms of TMJ disorders include pain or tenderness in the face and jaw area, a locking jaw, clicking or popping sounds when you move your jaw, trouble chewing, and swelling on the sides of the face. TMJ disorders can affect anybody and there is a wide range of possible causes. Many patients experience TMJ disorders following an injury to the jaw, neck or head. It may also be caused by arthritis in the joint, movement between the soft tissue between the ball and socket in the joint, clenching your teeth, or even stress, which causes you to tighten your face muscles.

Dr. Kevin Postol can identify the causes of your TMJ disorder and decide on the most appropriate treatment. In some cases, TMJ disorders will go away on their own, but most patients require some kind of TMj treatment. If you schedule an appointment, there is a wide range of different treatments that may be recommended.

Medications

Medications can be used to relieve the symptoms and treat the pain caused by TMJ disorders.

Pain relievers and anti-inflammatories

For mild cases of TMJ disorder, some patients find that over the counter pain medications are adequate. However, if the pain is more severe, we can prescribe stronger pain relievers. Medications such as prescription-strength ibuprofen, for example, may be prescribed for a limited time.

Antidepressants

Tricyclic antidepressants, such as amitriptyline, are most commonly used to treat mental health issues, like depression. However, in small doses, they can be used for pain relief and to improve sleep patterns. They can also be used to treat bruxism (excessive grinding of the teeth), which may be a cause of TMJ disorders.

Muscle Relaxants

If we suspect that your TMJ disorder is caused by tight muscles around the jaw, often as a result of stress, we can prescribe muscle relaxants. After a few weeks of use, you should notice a reduction in pain and symptoms.

Mediations can be very effective when trying to manage the symptoms of TMJ disorder and some patients will find that the issue goes away after taking medication. However, these medications will not always deal with the root cause of the issue and our team may recommend other treatment options.

Non-Drug Therapies

If medication is not giving you enough relief or you want to avoid taking medication, if possible, there are some non-drug therapies that we can offer.

Oral splints and mouthguards

Many patients that suffer from TMJ disorders benefit from a mouthguard or a splint in the mouth. It is a very beneficial non-drug treatment for a lot of patients that suffer from TMJ disorders.

Physical therapy

Physical therapy is another effective TMJ treatment that treats issues with the muscles and joints around the jaw. We may prescribe certain stretches and exercises that are designed to stretch and loosen muscles in the jaw and strengthen them. In some cases, we can also offer treatments using ultrasound or heat and ice.

Counseling

If we believe that your TMJ disorder is caused by habits such as teeth grinding, biting your fingernails, and leaning on your chin, we may prescribe counseling. This will help you to understand why you engage in these behaviors, which are often caused by stress or anxiety. Many patients find that counseling helps them to avoid these behaviors, so they see a reduction in symptoms of TMJ disorder.

Surgical Procedures

If other methods of TMJ treatment are not working, Dr. Kevin Postol will take you through your different options for surgical procedures to deal with TMJ disorders.

Arthrocentesis

Arthrocentesis is a simple procedure that involves using small needles, which are inserted into the muscles in the jaw. This will remove fluids and reduce inflammation in the muscles. It is a minimally invasive procedure that does not require major surgery and many patients find that it is very effective.

Injections

You may also benefit from injections of corticosteroids into the jaw muscles. In rare cases, patients also benefit from botox injections into the jaw to prevent pain when chewing.

TMJ arthroscopy

Arthroscopy is often used as an alternative TMJ treatment to open-joint surgery as it is less invasive. A small tube, known as a cannula, is inserted into the joint space, then an arthroscope is inserted and small surgical tools are used to perform surgery. Although there are fewer risks involved than there are with open-joint surgery, this treatment is limited and, in some cases, open-joint surgery is necessary.

Modified condylotomy

Modified condylotomy is a TMJ treatment that involves surgery on the mandible rather than the jaw itself, but it can still address issues with a locking jaw and pain that are caused by TMJ disorder.

Open-joint surgery

If all other types of TMJ treatment are ineffective, we can offer open-joint surgery to address the issue. This is usually required when structural problems with the joints in the jaw are causing a TMJ disorder. Rebuilding or replacing the joint itself is necessary for some patients, and this is when open-joint surgery will be used. However, we will only use this in cases where other TMJ treatments are ineffective because there are more risks involved.

If you are experiencing any of the symptoms of a TMJ disorder, schedule an appointment with Dr. Kevin Postol today. Our experienced team can assess your issue and try to determine the root cause of your TMJ disorder. We will then recommend one of these TMJ treatments so you can find relief and manage your pain. Many people live with this disorder for too long before seeking TMJ treatments, but you don’t have to put up with the pain, so contact us today so we can help you.

Why You Should Consider Cosmetic Dentistry

Dr. Kevin. F. Postol and the team at our Ballwin dental practice like to ensure that every patient who steps through our doors can feel confident and comfortable with the treatment we provide. Besides guaranteeing some of the best care standards possible, we also like to make sure that you choose the best options for you.

When it comes to helping to improve the appearance of your teeth, cosmetic dentistry solutions are likely to be the best fit. Here are some reasons why they’re worth considering.

Improve the appearance of your smile

Perhaps the most common cosmetic issue our team deals with, above all else, is tooth discoloration. Your teeth can be discolored over time due to age, neglect of your dental routine, certain foods, medications, and smoking. Yellowing, greying, or browning teeth can affect your confidence in your smile, but from teeth whitening techniques to porcelain veneers, we can help you smile proudly.

You can repair all kinds of damage

The line between cosmetic and restorative dentistry can seem blurred. Both the porcelain veneers and dental crowns we offer can help you address discolored teeth, cracks, chips, and other damage that may compromise your smile. As well as improving and repairing the appearance of your smile, cosmetic treatments can also improve the health and function or your teeth. You will be able to eat as you could before any damage occurred.

Ensure the long-term health of your teeth

Issues like cracked and crooked teeth aren’t just cosmetic problems. They can be an issue for your general dental health, as well. Teeth that become more crooked over time can cause pain, tooth decay, gum disease, and damage to other healthy teeth. The Invisalign treatment provided by Dr. Postol can help you address this risk, improving your overall well being.

Long-lasting results

One of the best reasons to consider cosmetic treatments is that, as a patient, you can rest assured that the results are likely to last you for years. Some treatments, like teeth whitening and Invisalign, need to be carried out over multiple visits to ensure the best possible effects. With treatments like using veneers and crowns, you can expect them to last up to as long as a decade. Of course, this largely depends on the condition of your mouth and which treatments are best suited to your needs.

Improved quality of life overall

You should consider the physical reasons to look at our cosmetic dentistry services, but you should think about the positive impact they could have on your mental health. If you feel yourself being shy with your smiles, are self-conscious about photos, or how you appear in public settings due to your teeth, then we can help.

Dr. Kevin F. Postol and his team are equipped and ready to help patients address all kinds of cosmetic dentistry needs. Whether you’re dealing with discolored, cracked, chipped, or crooked teeth, schedule a consultation with us to find the best way to fix them. Contact us today!

Your Smile is a Reflection of Your Overall Health

We smile hundreds of times a day – for happiness, confidence, politeness, and many other social reasons. With so much at stake, we should not forget about looking after the health of our mouth, teeth, and gums?! The look of your smile says a lot about you, so it should reflect its personality and health. Be sure to have one that others will notice for the right reasons.

A healthy smile, a healthy body

Following a poor diet, not exercising, smoking, or drinking can negatively affect our bodies. Just like you might notice a weight gain or new pimples, our lifestyle, and health affect our smile.

Indeed, what we eat and our daily habits can protect our teeth or can be highly detrimental. Moreover, some tooth problems, such as chipping and grinding, are directly linked to stress and anxiety. If you are not sure how to improve the health of your teeth, schedule an appointment with Dr. Kevin F. Postol and find out which of your habits are beneficial.

We will be able to identify any possible underlying issues and help you improve the general level of your health. Indeed, we would not limit ourselves to assess your teeth, but we also aim at resolving the root of the problem.

Chipped, missing, or worn teeth

Undoubtedly, your teeth and smile is the first thing others will notice about you and can truly help you make a fantastic first impression. However, time and detrimental habits might have taken a hit on the health and look of your teeth.

One of the most recurrent reasons behind tooth decay is our diet. Indeed, today our eating habits, ingredients, and recipes involve high quantities of sugars and refined carbs, which aid the development of harmful bacteria in our mouths.

However, wanting to repair a loose or missing tooth is not just a matter of vanity, but should also be a health priority. Such unbalance in your mouth can create jaw and chewing problems over time, as well as becoming more challenging to resolve.

In this case, paying a visit to your dentist can help you figure out what is the best solution and plan of action for your situation. Many patients indeed need to turn around their habits entirely and reevaluate their diets and routines. If you are concerned about changing your lifestyle, contact us so we can plan the best strategy together.

Healthy gums go a long way

Gums are often forgotten, yet they are just as important as your teeth in portraying your health. Indeed, our gums should be firm and pink. In the eventuality that you have noticed them being red, pale, or swollen, you should speak immediately to your dentist.

Aside from inflammations and infections, unhealthy gums can be a sign of anemia or diabetes, conditions that need prompt treatment. Moreover, eating disorders and conditions can cause your mouth to look unhealthy and worn. To restore the look and feel of your teeth, give us a call today!

At Home Oral Health Care Tips

Not everyone looks forward to visiting the dentist yet without it some are probably still not getting proper oral healthcare advice. It’s important to be informed about oral hygiene in order to prevent oral diseases and decay. Although different patients may have specific needs, there are certain tips everybody should follow. Here are some examples that you can do at home.

Teeth Cleaning Routine

You should have a daily routine to keep your teeth clean and healthy. This should include:

Brushing

Brush your teeth twice per day. Use a fluoride toothpaste, preferably with enamel support. Electric toothbrushes are usually recommended by any dentist but even if you use a manual one, always go for soft bristles and a small head. This will give you more access to your mouth so you can really get into those nooks and crannies.

Flossing

You should clean between your teeth daily either using loose floss or a floss pick. Ask your dentist if you need any help flossing, or if you notice your gums bleed. A little is perfectly normal but if it seems like a lot, this could be a sign of gum disease.

Mouthwash

Use a mouthwash daily as well. The important thing to remember with mouthwash is not the brand, but how you use it. Follow the instructions and swirl it around your mouth for 60 seconds as recommended, this will help to fight more bacteria, plaque, and diseases like gingivitis.

Diet

Your oral health is always connected to your diet. Avoid sugary drinks and snacks where possible. If you eat a healthy diet, your teeth will be healthier as well. Think about cutting down on the types of food and drink that might stain your teeth, such as red wine and coffee. Citric acid is also a danger, so be careful with oranges and lemons, if you do eat a lot of these, rinse your mouth out with water. After eating, brush your teeth as recommended which means taking a toothbrush to work with you.

Bad Habits

There are several bad habits that are harmful to your teeth and mouth such as smoking. If you are having problems quitting, speak to your dentist for some friendly advice. Chewing sugary gum is not good for your teeth so always opt for sugar-free. Don’t chew on other objects such as pens or your nails while working or studying. Your dentist will be able to give you tips on how to stop.

Mouthguards

These are more for particular cases such as patients who suffer from bruxism. This is a condition where you unconsciously grind your teeth and it can be damaging. Mouthguards will relieve strain on your jaw and help you to get over the habit. Always get a custom fitted mouthguard made by your dentist.

Contact us with any oral healthcare questions or to schedule an appointment for treatment today!

Questions Regarding Cracked and Split Teeth

Visiting us for regular exams and dental cleaning is essential for your overall oral health and wellness. From teeth cleanings to oral screenings, you should always make it a point to see Dr. Kevin F. Postol and the team here at our family and cosmetic dentistry practice at least twice a year.

But, dentistry is so much more than cleanings and screenings. Cosmetic dentistry and restorative dentistry are becoming more popular as people start to visit the dentist for the first time after years of neglecting their teeth.

No one wants cracked or split teeth. Not only can it be embarrassing, but it can even be painful or dangerous. Understandably, you might have questions about cosmetic dentistry for cracked teeth. Below, you’ll find some of the most common ones, as well as the answers you may be seeking.

How Do I Know if I Have Cracked or Split Teeth?

Believe it or not, cracked teeth aren’t always visible, especially in the back of the mouth. One way you can tell there’s a problem is if you’re experiencing pain. A cracked tooth can cause a sharp, shooting pain in the mouth.

You may have difficulty biting down on foods and may be hypersensitive to hot or cold foods. That’s usually an indication that there is some type of fracture because the interior of your tooth isn’t meant to be exposed to temperature changes. It can cause pain and discomfort. When this happens, we consider it a dental emergency, so please contact our office as soon as possible.

How Can a Cracked or Split Tooth Be Fixed?

If you suspect that your tooth is cracked or split, the most important thing is to give us a call as quickly as possible. Our team is experienced in dealing with cracked teeth and will provide you with quality care and reassurance to make you as comfortable as possible.

First, we’ll need to get a clear image of the teeth, so we will start by taking an X-ray to determine exactly what’s going on. The kind of treatment you’ll receive will depend on how much damage has been done and which teeth are affected.

A cracked tooth refers to a vertical crack that runs the length of the tooth itself, from the top to the gumline. In some cases, the tooth can be saved with a root canal and finished with a dental crown. But, if the crack goes underneath the gumline, it’s likely the tooth will have to be extracted. There are replacement options, of course, so don’t fret too much over tooth extraction – it’s a more common process than many people think.

If your tooth has split into different segments, part of it may be able to be saved with a root canal. But, teeth usually break this way when a fracture has gone untreated for a long time. If the tooth or gums have started to decay, an extraction is often the best solution.

You don’t have to live in pain or deal with the embarrassment of a visible cracked or split tooth. Feel free to contact us today if you’re experiencing any of these symptoms. Dr. Postol will be happy to take a look and provide you with the best treatment possible.

How to Improve Your Oral Health Routine

If you want to make sure your oral health routine is doing the most for your oral health and your smile, you need to make sure you’re doing the following things.

Never Go To Bed Without Brushing Your Teeth

Never, ever go to bed without brushing your teeth. It’s all too easy to fall into bed when you’re tired and ‘forget’, but the things you have eaten throughout the day can have a party in your mouth (and not the good kind). Get into the habit of brushing twice a day without fail. Don’t leave it too late to brush your teeth if you’re always too tired to do it right before bed.

Brush Properly

Take your time to brush properly. Spend time on each tooth, even the ones at the back of your mouth. You should also brush the backs of your teeth. Make sure you’re getting all over the tooth and that you’re not brushing too hard or too soft.

Invest In A Better Toothbrush

A better toothbrush will mean you can simply focus on each tooth while the brush does the rest of the work. You should invest in a high quality electric or sonic toothbrush – many of them will even tell you when to move on to another part of your mouth, when the head needs to be changed, and when to charge. You won’t regret buying a good one if you want to take your oral hygiene seriously.

Never Neglect Your Tongue

Your tongue is a breeding ground for bacteria, so you shouldn’t neglect to brush it. Give it a gentle brush each time you brush your teeth.

Always Floss

Flossing should be just as important as brushing in your routine. Your gums may bleed at first, but this should stop as you continue. Flossing will get rid of food and debris, stop plaque build up, and reduce bad breath. It’s also good for the gums and can reduce inflammation.

Use Mouthwash

Use mouthwash at least once a day to finish off your brushing routine. It helps to get rid of the bacteria in your mouth and will freshen your breath further.

Limit Sugary And Acidic Foods

Try to be mindful of the sugary and acidic foods you consume, as too much of them could harm your teeth.

Chew Sugar Free Gum After Meals

After each meal, chew some sugar free gum. This will neutralize the bacteria in your mouth and ensure the food you have just eaten isn’t doing you any harm. It’ll freshen your breath, too.

See A Dentist At Least Twice A Year

Book in with your dentist twice a year for a check up. A good dentist will be able to spot any issues before you do!

Schedule Your Appointment With Dr. Postol Today

If you want to begin improving your oral health routine, schedule an appointment with Dr. Postol today. Taking care of your teeth now will mean a healthier smile in the long run!