SmilesByGlerum News

Karen Glerum DDS

Dental Health News Online | January 2011

January 7th, 2011

Dear Patient,

Happy New Year! Now’s the time to take charge of your New Year’s resolutions, starting with improved dental—and, consequently, overall—health for this year.

We look forward to seeing you soon!

Sincerely,

Karen Glerum, D.D.S.

Mediating Mouth Misery

Mouth MiseryFrom oral irritations to dental disasters, your dentist is your best source of information on how to best soothe your dental distress.

Mouth Sores. Canker sores and cold sores are common, annoying mouth irritations that are often confused with one another.

The first sign of a cold sore is usually a tingling sensation around the mouth, followed by painful, fluid-filled blisters on the lips and around the mouth. The blisters typically burst and scab over, usually healing in about a week.

Canker sores appear inside the mouth, presenting as small ulcers with white or gray bases and red borders. A bite or burn inside your mouth can trigger a canker sore, as can certain foods.

Talk to us about the best ways to soothe your mouth sores, and have us check them out if they don’t clear up after a week.

Burned Tongue/ Burned Palate. The delicate tissues on your tongue or palate can burn easily from too-hot food or drink in your mouth. In these cases, the first thing you’ll want to do is cool the burned area immediately, to not only soothe the burn, but also to make sure the heat loses its power to damage the surrounding cells. The quickest and most effective way to do this is to hold cold water in your mouth, or suck on an ice-cube.

Once the initial burn subsides, allow your injury to heal for a few days by avoiding spicy foods, acidic foods like tomatoes and citrus fruits, irritants like vinegar, and sharp, salty foods like chips.

Knocked-Out Tooth. Whether it’s a sports injury, a slip and fall, or perhaps a confrontation with a boxing wannabe, you or someone in your company may suffer the bad luck of having a permanent tooth knocked out or loose.

If it’s knocked out, the first thing to do is find your tooth and, holding it by the crown, gently rinse off the root of the tooth with clean water. Do not scrub it or remove any attached tissue fragments — if reconnected immediately, there’s a chance the torn periodontal ligaments can reattach to the gums. Carefully place the tooth back in its socket, and bite down gently on a soft cloth or moistened teabag to keep it in place. If the knocked-out tooth, however, belongs to a child or if the patient is not able to keep the tooth safely in his or her mouth, put the tooth in a cup of milk.

If a tooth is only knocked loose, the immediate procedure is very similar: simply guide the tooth back into its proper place with your finger and bite down gently.

In all these instances, call our office immediately, or get to an emergency dental clinic within 30 minutes of the incident, in order to have the best chance of saving the tooth.

Please don’t hesitate to call our office (561.374.8922) for advice on all your dental questions.

My Gum Disease Is Linked to What?

#You’ve probably heard us talk about the “mouth-body connection” and how periodontal (gum) disease has been linked to heart disease, stroke and diabetes, in addition to pregnant women’s chances of giving birth to pre-term, low-weight babies. Did you know, however, about the correlation between gum disease and rheumatoid arthritis, kidney disease, and even certain cancers?

While rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and gum disease are both systemic inflammatory diseases, it is interesting to note that patients with RA are eight times more likely to suffer from gum disease than those without RA.

Also important is the correlation between gum disease and kidney disease. We know that gum disease is a leading cause of tooth loss in adults, so it’s noteworthy to learn that toothless adults are more likely to have chronic kidney disease than adults with all their teeth.

Men with tooth loss and a history of gum disease are reported to have an increased risk of developing certain cancers. While more research continues to be conducted, associations have been noted between gum disease and kidney, pancreatic and haematologial cancers, although gum disease may just be a marker of a susceptible immune system. Severe gum disease has also been documented as a risk factor for head and neck squamous cell carcinoma.

Let’s talk about your periodontal health, and we’ll work to ensure your healthy body starts with a healthy mouth!

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