Long Island Perio

Posture and Your Oral Health

 

Your posture and your bite are closely related. When any part of your body is out of alignment with the other parts, there is a similar chain reaction. When your upper and lower teeth are closed together, each tooth actually forms a skeletal relationship with its opposing tooth. This bite determines the position of your jaw, and in turn, the position of your head on your spine. 

Check Your Posture

To demonstrate this, tilt your head backwards and close your teeth lightly together. Notice that your back teeth hit first. Now tilt your head forward toward your chest and again lightly touch your teeth together. Now the front teeth hit first. These exaggerated movements demonstrate how the bite and head position affect one another.

The teeth are part of the skeletal system. When your teeth are improperly aligned, there is often a compensating effect throughout the postural chain. The body will adjust itself. This can involve muscles in the neck, back, and even those of the pelvis, legs, and feet. Poor posture is not often thought of as a health problem. Over time, however, the consequences of postural neglect can be as damaging as an injury. 

There are specific symptoms of a poorly postured bite such as: Numbing or tingling sensation in one hand, pain in the jaw, head neck, shoulders, back, and difficulty clearing the ears .

When your bite is involved with a postural problem, the dentist must correct it so that the muscles, bones, and teeth can function without strain and tension. Because the postural position of the head, neck, and shoulders is so closely related to the bite, both dental therapy and physical therapy may be needed to correct the bite. Doing so will then frequently relieve seemingly unrelated symptoms such as pain in the head, neck, and back. 

Poor postural habits become more difficult to correct the longer they exist, and they also become more injurious to your body. If you have any of the symptoms described, call us today for a routine check-up. 

 

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Oral Cancer: Causes and Prevention

 

Oral Cancer is no joke.

Oral Cancer is no joke.

 

Causes of Oral Cancer

  • Tobacco use of any kind, including cigarettes, cigars, pipes, chewing tobacco and snuff, among others.
  • Heavy alcohol use
  • Excessive sun exposure to your lips
  • Sexually transmitted virus called human papillomavirus (HPV).

The Good News

If oral cancer is discovered early, the cure rate is nearly 90%. However, if the cancer has already spread before diagnosis, the survival rate is 60% after five years of treatment. The best outcome for oral cancer is always early diagnosis and treatment.

Ways to Prevent Oral Cancer

At Farber Center we have oral cancer screenings included in our routine maintenance, but how can we prevent it?

  • Stop smoking or don’t start smoking. If you smoke, quit!
  • Drink alcohol only in moderation, if at all. For women, this means one drink a day.
  • Choose a healthy diet full of fruits and vegetables.
  • Protect yourself from HPV.
  • Always brush and floss your teeth regularly.
  • Limit your exposure to the sun.
  • Replace frying and grilling with baking, boiling or steaming. Use healthy spices like garlic, ginger and curry powder for added flavor.

We are here to help you with any Oral Cancer questions you may have. Visit our website today for more information!

 

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Periodontal Disease: The Warning Signs

 

You may wonder when is the right time to refer your patient to a periodontist. There are specific warning signs that indicate the presence of periodontal disease, or gum disease.

Bleeding

Non-invasive periodontal treatment may no longer be effective if bleeding occurs. Uncontrollable bleeding is the first sign to refer the patient to a periodontist.

How to Detect Periodontal Disease

The probe is the number one instrument used to monitor changes in periodontal health. An increase in probing depth often indicates that the disease cannot be controlled in office. That would be the second indication to refer a patient.

Radiographs are also used to determine when a periodontist is needed, but they are not taken as often, so changes there may not be seen for two to five years.

Standard probing depth reading is 3mm. When it hits 4mm this becomes a warning zone. When it increases to 5mm, to 7mm and higher, a patient needs an immediate referral. This is a sign that there is no longer health in the pocket of the gum tissue.

Evaluate the Patient

When you are thinking about referring your patient to a periodontist, how often you are seeing that patient is a contributing factor. If you are seeing the patient every three months, then you know that you can monitor the situation and reevaluate them again three months later. However, you are only seeing the patient once or twice a year, then that may be a time to be more assertive in your treatment plan.  In the case of a patient who visits every three months – and there is no visible improvement – you should ask, “What is the next step?” If there is improvement, then we reevaluate the case at the next hygiene visit. If their condition stays the same, an ideal treatment plan is as simple as telling the patient to increase the frequency of their dental hygiene visits.

 

 

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Nutrition and Your Oral Health

nutrition and oral health

Heart Health Awareness Month and National Nutrition Month bring attention to lifestyle factors you should consider regarding heart disease, heart conditions.  When we think about heart disease we should take the time to consider our nutrition. There are key fruits and vegetables that are especially good for your heart and teeth.

Nutrition for Heart Health

Many fruits and vegetables are very beneficial to your heart health.

  • Berries are high in heart-healthy polyphenols, raspberries particularly have a lot of fiber (8 grams in a one-cup serving).
  • Oranges are well known for their vitamin C content, but they also contain pectin, a kind of insoluble fiber that’s important for heart health.
  • Tomatoes, like pomegranates, are a good source of potassium, and contain lycopene, a powerful antioxidant linked to heart health. Tip: Cooking tomatoes helps release their lycopene.
  • Spinach is high in nitrates, which are linked to blood vessel health. It contains 181 percent of the daily value (DV) for vitamin K, which promotes heart health, in each one-cup serving.

Nutrition for Your Teeth

When it comes to the health of your teeth, you really are what you eat. Sugary foods, such as candy and soda, contribute to tooth decay. One of the first areas to decline when your diet is less than ideal is your oral health, according to the American Dental Association (ADA). Use this healthy foods list to improve your diet and the health of your mouth:

We Suggest:

  • Leafy greens such as kale and spinach also promote oral health. They’re high in calcium, which builds your teeth’s enamel. They also contain folic acid, a type of B vitamin that has numerous health benefits, including possibly treating gum disease in pregnant women, according to MedlinePlus.
  • While the ADA recommends steering clear of most sweet foods, there are some exceptions. Fruits, such as apples, might be sweet, but they’re also high in fiber and water. The action of eating an apple produces saliva in your mouth, which rinses away bacteria and food particles. The fibrous texture of the fruit also stimulates the gums. Eating an apple isn’t the same as brushing your teeth with a toothpaste that contains fluoride, but it can tide you over until you have a chance to brush. Pack either a whole apple or apple slices in your lunch to give your mouth a good scrubbing at the end of the meal.
  • Carrots are crunchy and full of fiber. Eating a handful of raw carrots at the end of the meal increases saliva production in your mouth, which reduces your risk of cavities. Celery acts a bit like a toothbrush, scraping food particles and bacteria away from your teeth. It’s also a good source of vitamins A and C, two antioxidants that give the health of your gums a boost.
Although Heart Health Awareness Month came to a close, National Nutrition Month just started. It is a great time to get excited about different foods and how the contribute to a healthy body and mouth!
Farber Center takes your oral health and total body health seriously.  We look forward to seeing you at your next appointment.

 

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Sedation for Dental Surgery: Patient Comfort

 

sedation dental surgery

Periodontist Dr. Alan Farber of Farber Center explains the various types of sedation used to keep patients comfortable during implant dentistry.

Patients express their surprise by how comfortable they feel during and after the placement of dental implants. They often express the procedure was much easier than they expected.

Types of Sedation

Local Anesthetic

Many patients have their implants placed with what we call local anesthetic. Once the patient is numb they do not feel any discomfort. They just feel a little pressure or a little vibration during the implant procedure.

Using Medications

Some patients, however, need more relaxation and we use what we call conscious sedation techniques using medications. I am currently certified in New York State for conscious sedation.

Often times patients come in and they say they just want to go to sleep and wake up when the procedure has been completed. We have a medical team of board certified anesthesiologists who come to our office quite regularly. A medical anesthesiologist uses intravenous sedation, also called IV sedation, and puts the patient to sleep and carefully monitors all vital signs during the procedure.

Post-Surgery

After the procedure, the patient wakes up and we conduct further assessments. The patient stays in our office for a period of time in order to fully recover from the anesthesia and receive post-op instructions. A driver who accompanied the patient to the office then drives them home.

When patients compare the procedure to having a tooth removed, they often tell me time and time again that the implant placement felt easier. They say afterwards that they hardly felt any discomfort.

Also after a dental implant procedure in one of our Long Island clinics, most patients report that they use a minimal amount of medication for discomfort. Often we recommend Motrin, Advil, Tylenol or similar medications if needed for a short time after a procedure.

 

 

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