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Posts for: June, 2018

By Dentistry at Camp Creek
June 22, 2018
Category: Oral Health
Tags: dentures  
StopWearingYourDenturesWhileYouSleep

Perhaps you’ve heard the old saying: “Take care of your dentures and your dentures will take care of you.” Well, maybe it’s not that old—but it’s still a sensible notion. Maintaining your dentures by routinely cleaning them and having them checked for fit will improve their longevity.

There’s one other thing you should include on your maintenance routine—avoid wearing your dentures 24/7, especially while you sleep. This bad habit could lead to some unpleasant consequences.

For one, wearing dentures continuously can accelerate bone loss in the jaw that eventually causes your dentures to lose their comfortable fit. Bone loss is a natural consequence of tooth loss because the bone no longer receives the stimulation to grow transmitted by the teeth during chewing. Dentures can’t transmit this stimulus; what’s more, the pressure they place on the gums and underlying bony ridges could make bone loss worse. You can relieve this gum pressure at night by taking them out.

Dentures can also become a breeding ground for bacteria and fungi that cause disease, irritation and unpleasant mouth odors. Taking dentures out at night deprives these microorganisms of a prime opportunity to carry on business as usual—and it’s also a great time to clean your dentures. People who sleep with their dentures in their mouth are more likely to have gum or oral yeast infections and higher levels of proteins produced by white cells that increase inflammation. That could contribute to other diseases throughout the body.

Besides taking your dentures out at night, you should also practice other daily hygiene tasks. Remove your dentures after eating and rinse them with clean water. Brush your dentures daily with a soft-bristled brush and dish or antibacterial soap or dental cleanser (no toothpaste—it’s too abrasive for denture surfaces). Be sure you clean your gums and tongue every day too. When your dentures are out, store them in clean water or preferably an alkaline peroxide-based solution.

Removing your dentures at night and these other good habits will help extend the life and fit of your dentures. It could also help keep the rest of you healthy.

If you would like more information on denture care, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Sleeping in Dentures: A Habit that Can Cause Health Problems.”


By Dentistry at Camp Creek
June 12, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures

You've lost a tooth, and you know that smile gap is ugly and unhealthy. You'd love to restore your appearance and your ability to eat and dental implantsspeak normally. What's the best tooth replacement option? Find out if a dental implant is right for you. Placed by Dr. Travon Holt at Dentistry at Camp Creek in South Atlanta, dental implants replace missing teeth--from root to crown--for the most stable, most realistic dental prosthetic available.

What is a dental implant?

A state-of-the-art artificial tooth, a dental implant is composed of a titanium screw, a metal alloy extension post and a lifelike porcelain crown. Inserted during a brief, in-office oral surgery, the titanium screw integrates with the surrounding jaw bone. In fact, this bonding process is called osseointegration.

Osseointegration anchors the artificial root and is largely responsible for the procedure's 98 percent success rate, according to the Institute for Dental Implant Awareness. Because dental implants imitate real teeth in form, function and stability, dentists also use them to secure multi-tooth bridgework and full dentures.

The treatment

First, Dr. Holt will evaluate your oral health at Dentistry at Camp Creek in South Atlanta. It's important that dental implant recipients have healthy gums and sufficient jaw bone to support implants. X-rays and CAT scans supply your dentist with the information he needs to help you make the right decision.

If you and your dentist decide on a dental implant, Dr. Holt will numb the site with a local anesthetic. Then, he'll open the gums and drill a small hole into the jaw. After he inserts the implant device, he'll close the gums with a few sutures and send you home to heal.

It's important to keep pressure off the implant as the site heals over the next several weeks to months. After full osseointegration, Dr. Holt will re-open the site and bond the extension post and crown in place.

Caring for dental implants

Fortunately, dental implants cannot decay. However, they can experience an infection called peri-implantitis which resembles destructive gum disease. Bacteria-filled plaque and tartar are major players in tooth decay, periodontitis, and yes, dental implant failure.

To avoid complications such as peri-implantitis, make sure to:

  • Brush twice daily as the American Dental Association advises
  • Floss around your teeth and implant sites each day to keep remove plaque
  • Avoid habitual teeth clenching and grinding (wear a bite guard if necessary)
  • Get semi-annual check-ups and cleanings at Dentistry at Camp Creek
  • Eat a nutritious diet, low in carbohydrates and high in fiber, protein, and calcium

The best smile

After tooth loss, dental implants replace missing teeth so you feel confident and healthy once again. For more information on the dental implant treatment and if it could be right for you, contact Dentistry at Camp Creek in South Atlanta, GA. We'd love to tell you all about this marvelous tooth replacement. Call us today at (404) 629-9290.


By Dentistry at Camp Creek
June 12, 2018
Category: Oral Health
ActressEmmaStoneRevealsHowThumbSuckingAffectedHerTeeth

It's no secret that many of Hollywood's brightest stars didn't start out with perfectly aligned, pearly-white teeth. And these days, plenty of celebs are willing to share their stories, showing how dentists help those megawatt smiles shine. In a recent interview with W magazine, Emma Stone, the stunning 28-year-old star of critically-acclaimed films like La La Land and Birdman, explained how orthodontic appliances helped her overcome problems caused by a harmful habit: persistent thumb sucking in childhood.

“I sucked my thumb until I was 11 years old,” she admitted, mischievously adding “It's still so soothing to do it.” Although it may have been comforting, the habit spelled trouble for her bite. “The roof of my mouth is so high-pitched that I had this huge overbite,” she said. “I got this gate when I was in second grade… I had braces, and then they put a gate.”

While her technical terminology isn't quite accurate, Stone is referring to a type of appliance worn in the mouth which dentists call a “tongue crib” or “thumb/finger appliance.” The purpose of these devices is to stop children from engaging in “parafunctional habits” — that is, behaviors like thumb sucking or tongue thrusting, which are unrelated to the normal function of the mouth and can cause serious bite problems. (Other parafunctional habits include nail biting, pencil chewing and teeth grinding.)

When kids develop the habit of regularly pushing the tongue against the front teeth (tongue thrusting) or sucking on an object placed inside the mouth (thumb sucking), the behavior can cause the front teeth to be pushed out of alignment. When the top teeth move forward, the condition is commonly referred to as an overbite. In some cases a more serious situation called an “open bite” may develop, which can be difficult to correct. Here, the top and bottom front teeth do not meet or overlap when the mouth is closed; instead, a vertical gap is left in between.

Orthodontic appliances are often recommended to stop harmful oral habits from causing further misalignment. Most appliances are designed with a block (or gate) that prevents the tongue or finger from pushing on the teeth; this is what the actress mentioned. Normally, when the appliance is worn for a period of months it can be expected to modify the child's behavior. Once the habit has been broken, other appliances like traditional braces or clear aligners can be used to bring the teeth into better alignment.

But in Stone's case, things didn't go so smoothly. “I'd take the gate down and suck my thumb underneath the mouth appliance,” she admitted, “because I was totally ignoring the rule to not suck your thumb while you're trying to straighten out your teeth.” That rule-breaking ended up costing the aspiring star lots of time: she spent a total of 7 years wearing braces.

Fortunately, things worked out for the best for Emma Stone: She now has a brilliant smile and a stellar career — plus a shiny new Golden Globe award! Does your child have a thumb sucking problem or another harmful oral habit? For more information about how to correct it, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can learn more in the Dear Doctor magazine article “How Thumb Sucking Affects the Bite.”


By Dentistry at Camp Creek
June 02, 2018
Category: Oral Health
Tags: gum disease  
RecreationalMarijuanaCouldIncreaseYourRiskofGumDisease

In 2016, voters in three states—California, Massachusetts and Nevada—joined Alaska, Colorado, Oregon, Washington and the District of Columbia in legalizing the use of recreational marijuana.┬áThese referenda moved the country closer to what may soon be a monumental political showdown between the states and the federal government, which still categorizes marijuana as a controlled substance.

But there’s another angle to this story often overshadowed by the political jousting: is increased marijuana use a good thing for your health and overall physical well-being?

When it comes to your dental health, the answer might be no. The Journal of Periodontology recently published a study that included frequent marijuana users showing increased signs of periodontal (gum) disease. This harmful bacterial infection triggered by plaque buildup can cause weakening of gum attachment to teeth and create the formation of large voids between teeth and gums called periodontal pockets. Left untreated, the disease can also cause supporting bone loss and eventually tooth loss.

The study looked at the dental treatment data of over 1,900 adults of which around one-quarter used marijuana once a month for at least a year. Marijuana users in the study on average had 24.5% of pocket sites around their teeth with depths of at least eight millimeters (an indication of advanced gum disease). In contrast, non-users averaged around 18.9% sites.

To be sure, there are several risk factors for gum disease like genetics, oral hygiene (or lack thereof), structural problems like poor tooth position or even systemic conditions elsewhere in the body. This published study only poses the possibility that marijuana use could be a risk factor for gum disease that should be taken seriously. It’s worth asking the question of whether using marijuana may not be good for your teeth and gums.

If you would like more information on the effects of marijuana on dental health, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation.


















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