Posts tagged: gum disease treatment

Which Would You Prefer: Pain-free Periowave Or Painful Gum Surgery?

It is hard to imagine that any patient would prefer to have their gums flapped open, bone recontoured, tissue grafted from their upper palette and gums stitched back up again.  In fact, if faced with this option, I would pay a hefty premium to avoid this ordeal.  A 1994 NHANES study discovered that almost 3/4 of patients who were diagnosed with gum disease did not seek treatment due to fear of pain, cost and embarrassment.  Fortunately, Photodisinfection is a completely pain-free procedure that is significantly cheaper than gum surgery and with better outcomes for the patient.  Finally, there is a minimally invasive and non-antibiotic way to arrest gum disease.  With the indisputable links to heart disease, stroke, diabetes, cancer, Alzheimer’s, pre-term births etc., there is no longer a good reason to put off getting back to healthy gums. To find a dentist offering Periowave nearest you, please click here: Find A Dental Professional

Premature Death from Cancer Linked to Dental Plaque In New Study

The results of a recent study published in the British Medical Journal Open seem to indicate the possibility of a link between risk of premature death due to cancer and persistent dental plaque. The study took place in Stockholm, Sweden and was led by Professor Birgitta Söder. It was pretty comprehensive as it looked at the health of nearly 1,400 Swedish adults over a period of 24 years. The objective of the study was to determine whether or not the amount of dental plaque, which generally indicates poor oral hygiene, could be associated with premature death from cancer.

The study started in 1985 when the participants were all in their 30s and 40s, and continued until 2009. At the beginning of the study all participants were given a questionnaire to discover if there were any factors that might increase their risk of developing cancer. The questionnaire assessed variables such as whether or not they smoked, and their socio-economic status. They also received a clinical assessment. This revealed that while gum disease wasn’t prevalent, there were substantial deposits of plaque on the tooth surface.

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Can Losing Weight Help Me Fight Gum Disease?

The latest research is suggesting so. Researchers at Case Western Reserve University School of Dental Medicine have found the body is better able to fight off gum disease when it has fewer fat cells as these cells can trigger inflammation. The findings come from a pilot study of 31 obese people who had an average body mass index (BMI) of 39 and who were also suffering from gum disease. Half of the group underwent gastric bypass surgery and had fat cells removed from the abdomen, while the control group did not undergo surgery or have any fat removed.

Both groups were treated for their gum disease using a combination of appropriate nonsurgical periodontal treatments. These included scaling and root planing and improved daily oral hygiene routines. Although both groups showed improvement, those who had undergone surgery fared better on plaque levels, bleeding and measures for periodontal attachment. One thing which fascinated the researchers was that the glucose levels dropped in the group who underwent surgery and who had fat cells removed, as this finding could be significant for overweight people at risk of developing diabetes or insulin related problems.

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Why Does Gum Disease Become More Prevalent With Age?

A new research study, carried out by the University of London in collaboration with American research groups, has gone a little way towards explaining why gum disease is more likely to be found in older people. The study was recently published in Nature, and found that as we age, the production of a chemical called Del-1 gradually falls. It is hoped that gaining a better understanding about this chemical could lead to the development of alternative and hopefully more effective methods of treating and preventing gum disease.

The latest research is showing a link between low levels of the chemical Del-1 and an increased likelihood of developing gum disease.

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Universal Programs To Prevent Gum Disease Are Well Worth The Effort

From my observations, many people tend to be passive participants, leaving their oral health in the hands of their dental practitioners. Most people go to their dental clinic expecting that the dentist alone can prevent the onslaught of gum disease, abdicating their home care diligence in favour of bi-annual dental checkups. One dentist I know likes to use this phrase to coax patients into improving their oral hygiene practice at home: “Only brush & floss the teeth you want to keep!” While this phrase is always guaranteed to get a smile out of the patients, unfortunately, it makes light of a very serious issue. Tooth loss, after all, is not the most significant potential outcome of gum disease. In fact, gum disease has long been linked and associated with serious conditions like heart disease, stroke, cancer, arthritis, diabetes, pre-term births and others.

Given the list of unpleasant symptoms of gum disease that are both socially undesirable and physically painful:
1) Red, swollen, and puffy gums
2) Horribly bad breath
3) Bleeding gum tissue
4) Tooth and bone loss

…it is truly a wonder to me, that in this day and age, gum disease is still the most common human disease in the world, affecting ~75% of the adult population even in North America.

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