Preventing Periodontal Disease – Periodontist San Antonio

periodontal gum recessionPeriodontal disease is an infection in the gums that surround your teeth. If left untreated the bacteria will continue to grow and cause your gums to pull away from your teeth leaving pockets. These pockets collect food particles and then become infected. This can lead to gaps in your teeth and eventually tooth loss.

Periodontitis is common but largely preventable. Periodontitis is usually the result of poor oral hygiene. Brushing at least twice a day, flossing daily and getting regular dental checkups can greatly reduce your chance of developing periodontitis.

What Causes Gum Disease?

Plaque is the primary cause of gum disease. However, other factors can contribute to periodontal disease.

Here are some warning signs that can signal a problem:

  • Gums that bleed easily
  • Red, swollen, tender gums
  • Gums that have pulled away from the teeth
  • Persistent bad breath or bad taste
  • Permanent teeth that are loose or separating
  • Changes in the way your teeth fit together when you bite
  • Changes in the fit of partial dentures

There are several factors that can increase your risk of developing periodontal disease. Things such as:

  • Smoking
  • Pregnancy
  • Diabetes
  • Alcohol use
  • Poor oral hygiene

Keeping your teeth and gums healthy requires a daily hygiene routine of brushing twice a day and after meals, flossing, using mouthwash and maintaining a healthy diet. Also, visit your dentist for routine cleanings and checkups. Prevention is the key to oral success!

Call Andrew Weber, DDS for an appointment today at 210-496-5603. Visit our websites to learn more at www.periodontistsanantonio.com and www.excellentperiodontist.com.

Health Problems Are Associated With Bad Breath | San Antonio Periodontist

119504435What Health Problems Are Associated With Bad Breath? 

Persistent bad breath or a bad taste in the mouth may be a warning sign of gum (periodontal) disease. Gum disease is caused by the buildup of plaque on teeth. Bacteria cause the formation of toxins to form, which irritate the gums. If gum disease continues untreated, it can damage the gums and jawbone.

Other dental causes of bad breath include poorly fitting dental appliances, yeast infections of the mouth, and dental caries (cavities).

The medical condition dry mouth (also called xerostomia) also can cause bad breath. Saliva is necessary to moisten the mouth, neutralize acids produced by plaque, and wash away dead cells that accumulate on the tongue, gums, and cheeks. If not removed, these cells decompose and can cause bad breath. Dry mouth may be a side effect of various medications, salivary gland problems, or continuous breathing through the mouth.

Many other diseases and illnesses may cause bad breath. Here are some to be aware of: respiratory tract infections such as pneumonia or bronchitis, chronic sinus infections, postnasal drip, diabetes, chronic acid reflux, and liver or kidney problems.

Bad breath can be reduced or prevented if you:

  • Practice good oral hygiene. Brush twice a day with fluoridetoothpaste to remove food debris and plaque. Brush teeth after you eat (keep a toothbrush at work or school to brush after lunch). Don’t forget to brush the tongue, too. Replace your toothbrush every 2 to 3 months or after an illness. Use floss or an interdental cleaner to remove food particles and plaque between teeth once a day. Dentures should be removed at night and cleaned thoroughly before being placed in your mouth the next morning.
  • See your dentist regularly — at least twice a year. He or she will conduct an oral exam and professional teeth cleaning and will be able to detect and treat periodontal disease, dry mouth, or other problems that may be the cause of bad mouth odor.
  • Stop smoking and chewing tobacco-based products. Ask your dentist for tips on kicking the habit.
  • Drink lots of water. This will keep your mouth moist. Chewing gum (preferably sugarless) or sucking on candy (preferably sugarless) also stimulates the production of saliva, which helps wash away food particles and bacteria. Gums and mints containing xylitol are best.
  • Keep a log of the foods you eat. If you think they may be causing bad breath, bring the log to your dentist to review. Similarly, make a list of the medications you take. Some drugs may play a role in creating mouth odors(Source: WebMD).

In most cases, your dentist can treat the cause of bad breath. If your dentist determines that your mouth is healthy and the odor is not of oral origin, you may be referred to your family doctor or to a specialist to determine the odor source and treatment plan. If the odor is due to gum disease, for example, your dentist can either treat the disease or refer you to a periodontist, a dentist who specializes in treating gum conditions.

If you have any questions or want to schedule a visit for more information on gum recession, call  at Andrew Weber DDS at 210-496-5603 or visit our website at periodontistsanantonio.com or excellentperiodontist.com.

What are the Causes of Gum Recession? Periodontist San Antonio

periodontal smallGum recession is when the margin of the gum tissue that surrounds the teeth wears away, or pulls back, exposing more of the tooth, or the tooth’s root. When gum recession occurs, pockets or gaps, form between the teeth and gum line, making it easy for disease-causing bacteria to build up. If left untreated, the supporting tissue and bone structures of the teeth can be severely damaged, and may ultimately result in tooth loss.

Gum recession is a common dental problem. Most people don’t know they have gum recession because it occurs gradually. The first sign of gum recession is usually tooth sensitivity, or you may notice a tooth looks longer than normal. Typically, a notch can be felt near the gum line.

Gum recession is not something you want to ignore. If you think your gums are receding, make an appointment with your dentist. There are treatments that can repair the gum and prevent further damage.

There are a number of reasons that your gums may be receding. Gum recession typically occurs when gingival tissues creeps down your tooth, exposing the root which makes your tooth looks taller. If your gums have started to recede a thin layer of dentin is exposed, making teeth prone to sensitivity, staining and tooth decay. Some of the most common factors in gum recession include:

Periodontal Disease- More commonly known as gum disease, is bacterial infection that destroys gum tissue and the supporting bone that holds your teeth in place. Gum disease is the main cause of gum recession and can also results in tooth loss.

Aggressive Tooth Brushing- Not many know this, but breathing your teeth to hard or the wrong way can also cause gums your to recede. Brushing to aggressively the wrong way can cause the enamel to wear as well as cause the sensitive gum tissues to recede.

Genes- In some cases people whose parents had chronic gum recession can be more susceptible to receding gums. Studies have even shown that 30% of the population may be subject to gum disease, no matter how well you keep care of your teeth.

Tobacco Use- Smoking and chewing tobacco can cause significant gum recession as well as gum disease. Smoking tobacco causes the gum tissues to lose blood supplies, allowing for infection. Chewing tobacco physically irritates the tissue due to the materials, this ongoing irritation can result in gum recession in the area where the tobacco if help or moved around.

Lack of Dental Care- Not keeping up with a normal dental routine can cause several problems. Receding gums can be a result of untreated cavities, postponed cleanings, and persistent gum problems.

Piercings of the Tongue or Lip- Constant irritation of the gums from a lip or tongue piecing can cause for the gum to recede. You may not feel the piercing is uncomfortable, but repetitive rubbing against the soft tissues will result in tissue damage.

Hormonal Changes- Changes in the female hormone levels during a woman’s lifetime, such as events like puberty, pregnancy or menopause. These can all cause for gum sensitivity or gum recession.

Misaligned Teeth- When teeth are not aligned evenly it can cause too much force on your gums and bones. Usually, it’s only the few crooked teeth that are susceptible to gum recession. Crooked teeth can also get more plaque buildup they’re more difficult to clean, which can cause gingivitis.

There are a few ways to approach the treatment of receding gums, surgical and nonsurgical; each one depends on your individual case. Mild gum recession can be treated with a deep cleaning of the affected areas. As for the more extreme cases, gum surgery may be required.

If you have any questions or want to schedule a visit for more information on gum recession, call  at Andrew Weber DDS at 210-496-5603 or visit our website atperiodontistsanantonio.com or excellentperiodontist.com.

Foods that Aid in Oral Health

periodontal gum recessionWhen your gums aren’t healthy you’re at a higher risk of losing your teeth, something we can all agree we’d like to avoid. Oral health should be a high priority for us all, as you know the condition of your mouth can affect your overall health. Below are foods that can assist in gum health and your overall health.

1. Green Tea

Green tea contains complex compounds called “catechins” that can fight inflammation and actually control bacterial infections. It’s true! For example, one Japanese study found that men who drink green tea regularly have less occurrence of periodontal disease, as compared to infrequent tree drinkers. And another Japanese study showed that for both men and women, drinking one or more cups of tea per day was correlated with less tooth loss later in life. The antimicrobial “catechins” may in fact account for the oral health benefits associated with green tea, but as of now further study is needed. What we do know for sure, however, is that green tea consumption is good for oral health, period.

2. Strawberries and Kiwis 

Vitamin C is very important for the overall health of delicate gum tissue, because the vitamin C helps to prevent collagen from breaking down.  Without collagen, gums become extra tender, and thus susceptible to periodontal disease. Kiwis and strawberries have the highest concentration of vitamin C, but citrus fruits also boast good numbers. These fruits also do double duty because of their astringency, which may help to reverse discoloration caused by commonly consumed beverages like coffee and wine.

3. Nuts and Seeds

Nuts and seeds are a great source of plant-based protein, and they pack in powerful teeth-healthy micronutrients such as phosphorous, magnesium, potassium, zinc, and most importantly, calcium! Calcium is of course essential for strong bones and teeth, and dietary calcium may actually contribute to tooth remineralization. The nuts highest in calcium are almonds and brazil nuts. Sesame seeds are incredibly high in calcium as well, but make sure you get the unhulled variety.

4. Onions

Onions, especially when eaten raw, boast powerful bacteria-busting prowess thanks to their antimicrobial sulfur-containing compounds. Raw onion slivers can be eaten on sandwiches or in salads. However, if you simply cannot stomach them raw, cooked onion is better than no onion at all.

5. Shiitake Mushrooms

Shiitakes contain lentinan, a natural sugar that may help to prevent gingivitis. Gingivitis is gum inflammation, characterized by redness, swelling, and possibly even bleeding, often caused by a build-up of bacterial biofilm. Recent studies show that antibacterial compounds like lentinan specifically target these biofilm-making microbes. In fact, they’re so precise that they kill cavity-causing bacteria while leaving the other, non-harmful bacteria completely unaffected.

6. Apples, Celery, and other Low-Acid, Fibrous Foods

Often referred to as “dental detergents” these water-rich fruits and veggies act by stimulating saliva production, which keeps oral bacteria in check. These high-fiber foods also have a scrubbing effect, literally cleansing the surface of your teeth as you eat, working to brush the bacteria away. Chewing these foods will disturb and dislodge newly formed dental plaque, preventing it from ever forming(Source: Care2.com).

As always visit your dentist regularly for optimal oral health!

To make an appointment contact Dr. Andrew Weber DDS at 210-496-5603 or visit our website at periodontistsanantonio.com orexcellentperiodontist.com.

The Many Benefits of Mouthwash | San Antonio Periodontist

119504435Mouthwash can do more than just give your breath a boost. Mouthwash can help keep your gums and teeth healthy—but only if you use them properly. The benefits from using a mouthwash depend largely on the type of product used. Rinsing with mouthwash will loosen bits of food from your teeth, lessen bacteria in your mouth, temporarily reduce bad breath and leave a refreshing taste in your mouth.

Mouthwash can cut back the level of bacteria in your mouth. Of course, you still have to brush and floss your teeth regularly and combined will do a much better job of removing plaque and debris. Research shows that adding mouthwash to your oral care routine can in fact improve the overall cleanliness of your mouth and help keep gum inflammation at bay.

But gargling and rinsing for a few seconds doesn’t quite cut it.  Most mouthwashes are at their most effective when in contact with your mouth tissues for 30 seconds per use. That proves to be quite tasking for most of us, most of us would say mouthwash is so strong that it’s difficult to use for that long. Still, it’s worth toughing it out if you want the best results. It’s also a good cleaning agent for mouth guards.

Rinsing daily with certain mouthwashes can improve your oral health. We’re talking whitening your teeth, helping to prevent gum disease and fighting plaque!

What are the benefits of rinsing daily with an oral rinse?

1)     Freshens breath – First and most obviously, mouthwash temporarily reduces bad breath. Mouthwash kills bacteria associated with causing bad breath leaving you with minty fresh breath.

2)     Prevents Plaque build-up – Various mouthwashes help prevent plaque build up on your gums, in-between teeth, and on the surface of your teeth. Although it prevents the build up of plague, it cannot reduce the plaque that already exists on your teeth. So remember to always brush and floss before plaque becomes a problem.

3)     Removes particles – Most people use mouthwash only after brushing. This is a perfectly fine practice, but used before before brushing to rinse out loose particles in your mouth will make the brushing and flossing more effective.

4)     Stop cavities from forming – Regular use of mouthwash before and after you brush and floss, you can reduce the chances of cavities forming. Mouthwashes that contain fluoride can prevent cavities and strengthen your enamel. Remember, not all mouthwashes contain fluoride. Be sure to check the label on your mouthwash before purchasing.

As you know mouthwash is not a substitute for brushing and flossing and should be used in conjunction with good oral care habits. It only takes a moment to rinse but the positive impact on your oral health is much greater. With rinsing daily you can successfully navigate around dental problems.

Plus! Who doesn’t love that minty fresh feeling you get after rinsing with mouthwash?

To make an appointment contact Dr. Andrew Weber DDS at 210-496-5603 or visit our website at periodontistsanantonio.com orexcellentperiodontist.com.

What is the Pinhole Surgical Technique? | San Antonio Periodontist

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Pioneered by Dr. Chao the Pinhole® Surgical Technique is a fascinating new way to repair gum shrinkage through a pinhole in the gum without having to cut. This new technique will reduce discomfort and down time. In fact, you can eat dinner that night!

You probably have a lot of questions as to what the Pinhole Surgical Technique is, here are some frequently asked questions:

What is the Chao Pinhole® Surgical Technique? The Chao Pinhole® Surgical Technique is a way to repair gum shrinkage through a pinhole in the gum without having to cut.

Do you see this all the time? We see a lot of patients that need gum rejuvenation, but don’t realize it.

Before this procedure, would people rather live with the problem instead of getting it fixed? That happens to a lot of people because they are put in a dilemma of whether they should fix it with a very painful, drawn out gum grafting procedure, just try to ignore it, or try a temporary fix by placing a filling on the exposed root.

How long does the standard gum grafting procedure take? The standard procedure requires cutting out a graft of the gum from the palate and grafting it to where it’s needed. This creates two surgical wounds that patients have to deal with. To delicately cut and remove the graft tissue and attach it with sutures takes about an hour to an hour and a half for just one or two teeth. This requires the patient to recuperate for about two or three weeks.

What’s the key to the procedure? The key to The Pinhole Surgical Technique is that we don’t have to perform graft. We go through a pinhole which is made by a needle, so there’s no scalpel or cutting at all. Then we can literally shift the tissue down with very little trauma to the tissue. Also, there are no open wounds. It’s so minimally invasive; nothing could be more noninvasive in dentistry than this. I know that if you’re not used to seeing things like this it seems like it’s quite traumatic, but really it’s very, very minimal. There’s so much blood supply and so much collagen in the area that when you see the patient the next day, you can hardly tell if anything was done. The tiny pinhole that’s been made shrinks away by the next day.

So, you just move the collagen around, correct? I’m just moving the gum tissue which has abundant collagen in it. The collagen strips that I put in are used it to stabilize the gum flap. The collagen causes the body to regenerate more collagen tissue, so it serves a dual purpose.

How long will this last? This is expected to be permanent, and last as long as any other procedure. Nothing is forever of course, because there the normal aging process goes on. However, if everything is healthy and there is no over-brushing, I’ve seen this last years and years(Source Dr. Chao & pinholesurgicaltechnique.com).

Click the link to watch an informative video of Dr. Chao explaining the Pinhole Surgical Technique: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fXB9wwQNvK8

To discuss the Pinhole Surgical Technique contact Dr. Andrew Weber DDS at 210-496-5603 or visit our website at periodontistsanantonio.com or excellentperiodontist.com.

 

What is Gum Disease? | San Antonio Periodontist

multiple smiles

Gum disease is an infection of the tissues that surround your teeth. It is a major cause of tooth loss in adults. Because gum disease is typically painless, you may not even know you have it.

What Causes Gum Disease?

Plaque is the primary cause of gum disease. However, other factors can contribute to periodontal disease.

They include:

  • Hormonal changes, such as those occurring during pregnancy,puberty, menopause, and monthly menstruation, make gums more sensitive, which makes it easier for gingivitis to develop.
  • Illnesses may affect the condition of your gums. This includes diseases such as cancer or HIV that interfere with the immune system. Because diabetes affects the body’s ability to use blood sugar, patients with this disease are at higher risk of developing infections, including periodontal disease and cavities.
  • Medications can affect oral health, because some lessen the flow of saliva, which has a protective effect on teeth and gums.
  • Bad habits such as smoking make it harder for gum tissue to repair itself.
  • Poor oral hygiene habits such as not brushing and flossing on a daily basis, make it easier for gingivitis to develop.
  • Family history of dental disease can be a contributing factor for the development of gingivitis.

 

What Are the Symptoms of Gum Disease?

Gum disease may progress without producing obvious signs, even in the late stages of the disease. Although the symptoms of periodontal disease often are subtle, the condition can present some warning signs. Certain symptoms may point to some form of the disease. The symptoms of gum disease include:

  • Gums that bleed during and after tooth brushing
  • Red, swollen, or tender gums
  • Persistent bad breath or bad taste in the mouth
  • Receding gums
  • Formation of deep pockets between teeth and gums
  • Loose or shifting teeth
  • Changes in the way teeth fit together upon biting down, or in the fit of partial dentures.

Even if you don’t notice any symptoms, you may still have some degree of gum disease. In some people, gum disease may affect only certain teeth, such as the molars. Only a dentist or a periodontist can recognize and determine the progression of gum disease(Source: WebMD).

If you have any questions or want to schedule a visit for more information call Dr. Andrew Weber DDS at 210-496-5603 or visit our website atperiodontistsanantonio.com or excellentperiodontist.com.

A New Breakthrough in Gum Recession Treatment!

The Chao Pinhole® Surgical Technique is a treatment for gum recession. It is minimally invasive compared to traditional grafting techniques and is scalpel and suture free.

Traditional treatments of gum recession involve grafting soft tissue to rebuild the gum line. The tissue joins with the existing tissue as it heals. With the Pinhole® Surgical Technique a needle is used to make a small hole in the gum tissue. Special instruments are used to enter this pinhole and loosen the gum tissue. This helps expand and slide the gum line to cover the exposed tooth root.

With the Pinhole® Surgical Technique there is:

  • No sutures
  • No scalpels
  • Less discomfort for patient
  • Faster recovery than traditional grafting
  • Long lasting, natural looking results

To learn more about this revolutionary new procedure call the office of San Antonio Periodontist Andrew Weber DDS at 210-496-5603. Learn more by visiting the website at www.excellentperiodontist.com or www.periodontistsanantonio.com.

 

 

 

 

What causes gum recession? | Periodontist San Antonio

periodontal gum recession

There are many reasons that your gums may be receding. Gum recession typically occurs when gingival tissues creeps down your tooth, exposing the root which makes your tooth looks taller. If your gums have started to recede a thin layer of dentin is exposed, making teeth prone to sensitivity, staining and tooth decay. Some of the most common factors in gum recession include:

Periodontal Disease- Periodontal disease, more commonly known as gum disease, is bacterial infection that destroys gum tissue and the supporting bone that holds your teeth in place. Gum disease is the main cause of gum recession and can also results in tooth loss.

Aggressive Tooth Brushing- Not many know this, but breathing your teeth to hard or the wrong way can also cause gums your to recede. Brushing to aggressively the wrong way can cause the enamel to wear as well as cause the sensitive gum tissues to recede.

Piercings of the Tongue or Lip- Constant irritation of the gums from a lip or tongue piecing can cause for the gum to recede. You may not feel the piercing is uncomfortable, but repetitive rubbing against the soft tissues will result in tissue damage.

Hormonal Changes- Changes in the female hormone levels during a woman’s lifetime, such as events like puberty, pregnancy or menopause. These can all cause for gum sensitivity or gum recession.

Misaligned Teeth- When teeth are not aligned evenly it can cause too much force on your gums and bones. Usually, it’s only the few crooked teeth that are susceptible to gum recession. Crooked teeth can also get more plaque buildup they’re more difficult to clean, which can cause gingivitis.

Genes- In some cases people whose parents had chronic gum recession can be more susceptible to receding gums. Studies have even shown that 30% of the population may be subject to gum disease, no matter how well you keep care of your teeth.

Tobacco Use- Smoking and chewing tobacco can cause significant gum recession as well as gum disease. Smoking tobacco causes the gum tissues to lose blood supplies, allowing for infection. Chewing tobacco physically irritates the tissue due to the materials, this ongoing irritation can result in gum recession in the area where the tobacco if help or moved around.

Lack of Dental Care- Not keeping up with a normal dental routine can cause several problems. Receding gums can be a result of untreated cavities, postponed cleanings, and persistent gum problems.

There are a few ways to approach the treatment of receding gums, each one depends on your individual case. Mild gum recession can be treated with a deep cleaning of the affected areas. As for the more extreme cases, gum surgery may be required.

If you have any questions or want to schedule a visit for more information on gum recession, call  at Andrew Weber DDS at 210-496-5603 or visit our website at periodontistsanantonio.com or excellentperiodontist.com.

What is Periodontal Disease? | San Antonio Periodontist

periodontal small

Periodontal disease is an infection in the gums that surround your teeth. If left untreated the bacteria will continue to grow and cause your gums to pull away from your teeth leaving pockets. These pockets collect food particles and then become infected. This can lead to gaps in your teeth and eventually tooth loss.

Here are some warning signs that can signal a problem:

  • Gums that bleed easily
  • Red, swollen, tender gums
  • Gums that have pulled away from the teeth
  • Persistent bad breath or bad taste
  • Permanent teeth that are loose or separating
  • Changes in the way your teeth fit together when you bite
  • Changes in the fit of partial dentures

There are several factors that can increase your risk of developing periodontal disease. Things such as:

  • Smoking
  • Pregnancy
  • Diabetes
  • Alcohol use
  • Poor oral hygiene

Keeping your teeth and gums healthy requires a daily hygiene routine of brushing twice a day and after meals, flossing, using mouthwash and maintaining a healthy diet. Also, visit your dentist for routine cleanings and checkups. Prevention is the key to oral success!

Call Andrew Weber, DDS for an appointment today at 210-496-5603. Visit our websites to learn more at www.periodontistsanantonio.com and www.excellentperiodontist.com.