Monday, October 28, 2013

Not Every Tongue is Healthy

Do you ever wonder about the conditions of the tongue?  It the strongest muscle of the body which allows us to speak, taste and swallow.  A normal tongue is pink with small nodules called papillae on the surface.  Let's take a look at some issues and symptoms people can have.

There are a few reasons that can cause a tongue to have white spots or a whitish coating.  Leukoplakia is one condition where cells in the mouth grow excessively.  It can lead to white patches in the mouth or on the tongue.  The condition is mostly found in people that use tobacco products.  Leukoplakia is not dangerous on its own, but studies have shown it can be a precursor for oral cancer.  Its important to have it checked out by a dentist if the condition is occurring.

Candidiasis commonly known as oral thrush is a yeast infection of the mouth.  The condition leaves cottage cheese type white patches in the mouth or on the tongue.  It can be very painful and cause significant discomfort.  Oral thrush is normally seen in infants or elderly adults.  People with diabetes or use of inhaled steroids for asthma are more prone to this condition.  The dentist may  prescribe medications.

Some people suffer from a condition called oral lichen planus.  Although it occurs on many places of the body, it can occur inside the mouth on the cheeks, lips, tongue and gums.  The symptom are tiny white dots and raised white lines  that can become painful.  Researchers and doctors are unsure of the cause and have noticed it can resolve itself.  Tobacco products seem to worsen this condition, and proper oral hygiene can help avoid it.

These are just a few common conditions people see with the tongue.  Its always important to consult a dentist if any are occurring for good medical advice.  A dentist may give tips on how to prevent or treat any of these uncomfortable conditions.  Marietta emergency dentist, +Kirk Kimmerling DDS would be happy to consult with patients with mouth conditions or concerns.  

Monday, October 21, 2013

Quick Tip on Dry Mouth

Xerostomia or dry mouth can be horrible and a hard condition to deal with, as saliva is vital for the
Do You Have Dry Mouth?
mouth to stay healthy.  Certain medications for high blood pressure, diabetes, Sjogren's Syndrome, depression, anxiety or allergies can cause dry mouth.  It’s important to increase fluid intake if dry mouth is an issue.  Let's take a look at some of the issues associated with dry mouth:

1. Difficulty eating 
2. Cracking, dry lips
3. Corners of the mouth are cracked
4. Bad Breath
5. Sticky saliva
6. Mouth Ulcers or blisters, raw tongue
7. Waking from sleep due to dry mouth

If you suffer any of the above, perhaps it is time to consult a professional to determine a cause and right course of treatment for you.  A doctor or dentist will offer tips on how to help alleviate the situation. There are artificial saliva medications, if the condition is serious enough.  Therapeutic mouthwashes and rinses many times offer relief. 

Marietta dentist, +Kirk Kimmerling DDS is happy to consult with new patients experiencing dry mouth symptoms at the Verde Pointe Dental Associates office.   

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Help Avoid Tooth Decay, Gum Disease, Bad Breath, and Stained Teeth

Have you ever wondered what are the basics to maintaining great oral hygiene?  Basic everyday care involves brushing twice daily, flossing, regular professional hygiene cleanings and dental check-ups.  Basic care helps prevent tooth decay, gum disease, tooth loss, bad breath or stained teeth. 

Basic nutrition also plays a big factor in great oral health.  Bacteria that is left in the mouth can spread through the body and may lead to other health issues.  

Lets take a look at steps and tools that are necessary...  

1. Its important to brush in the morning and before bed.  Brushing helps remove bacteria filled plaque from teeth and gums.  Brushing gums also keeps them from bleeding and healthy.  Talk to the dentist about what type of tooth brush they recommend.  A Sonicare is generally the recommended toothbrush from Verde Pointe Dental Associates.  The right toothbrush is important considering it will be used everyday.  

2. The AmericanDental Association recommends to use toothpastes with fluoride.  Fluoride helps strengthen teeth to prevent tooth decay.  Some dentist recommend using mouth wash that contains fluoride at night before bed.  Swish the mouthwash all around for about a minute and spit.  Try not to rinse mouth after so the fluoride stays on teeth while asleep.   

3. Flossing is also a key part in removing plaque and bacteria.  There are so many options for flossing so pick one that feels most comfortable.  Some floss contains fluoride which is great to use because brushing alone cant always get between teeth.  

4. Its also important to brush bacteria off the tongue.  The tongue can harvest lots of bacteria which can lead to bad breath.  A tongue scraper can be purchased and works well. Using a soft bristled brush back and forth is ideal to remove bacteria daily.  

5. Avoiding sugary foods also helps keep bacteria and plaque down.  Bacteria feeds off sugar and produces plaque on teeth and gum line.  

Basic oral hygiene can help maintain a great future of oral health.  

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Are You Clenching Your Teeth?

Do you ever have concerns about teeth grinding or clenching?  People tend to clench or grind teeth from time to time that does not tend to cause much harm.  However, people that constantly clench on a regular basis
Marietta Dentist Can Help with Grinding and Clenching of Teeth
can cause damage and complications.

Studies have shown that most people clench or grind teeth during sleep. Its often caused by stress and anxiety in which people may be unaware.  Most people usually find out about there clenching or grinding from a loved one that hears it at night.  

Bruxism is the term used for chronic clenching or grinding.  Bruxism can result in a mild headache and a sore jaw most.  Grinding can become harmful and result in fracturing teeth, loosening teeth and even tooth loss.  Some chronic grinders actually grind their teeth enough to require a Marietta crown, bridge, root canals, partial dentures, implant crowns, teeth extractions or full dentures.  Worse case scenarios can lead to hearing loss, TMD/TMJ, or change of appearance of the jaw.  

If suspected that clenching or grinding is happening, its important to contact a dentist for an check up.  The dentist can check teeth and jaw to see what steps need to be taken to stop this problem.  A night guard might be recommended to wear at night while asleep.  The night guard will help protect teeth.  If stress seems to be the issue then the dentist may give some tips on how to relieve stress to control clenching or grinding.  The dentist may recommend to cut back on food and drinks that contain caffeine such as coffee, chocolate or sodas because they often intensify the problem.  Avoidance of alcohol can also help for chronic cases.  It's important to get bruxism under control as soon as possible to avoid long term problems.  Grinding and clenching is a common problem that usually can be controlled with help from a dentist.