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Is Gingivitis The Same Thing As Gum Disease?

Is Gingivitis the Same Thing as Gum Disease?

Healthy gums do not bleed.  Any amount of bleeding during brushing on on minimal stimulation is, therefore, variation from health.  Both gingivitis and periodontitis are forms of gum disease. Classification of gum diseases is very difficult because they are caused by many different types of germs and are dependent on the overall health of each individual patient.  However, recently it…

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Oral Hygiene | Why Are You Supposed To Brush Your Tongue?

Oral Hygiene | Why Are You Supposed to Brush Your Tongue?

Germs that cause gum disease, gingivitis, and tooth decay live in groups.  These bacteria are much less destructive when their groups, called colonies, are mechanically broken up with  a toothbrush.  Another problem caused by bacterial colonization is the production of foul odors.  This is why proper oral hygiene is important. The surface of the tongue is covered with many little…

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Motorcycle Safety | It’s Time For A Ride

Motorcycle Safety | It’s Time For a Ride

One favorite American pastime is jumping on a Harley and going for a ride.  It never ceases to amaze me how many motorcycle enthusiasts are actually out there, taking meticulous care of their beautiful bikes.  However, as a dentist, it also amazes me to see how many of us fail to take care of our most precious asset…our noggins! When…

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Dental Insurance | Why Can’t You Just “Write Off” The Amount That My Insurance Doesn’t Pay?

Dental Insurance | Why Can’t You Just “Write Off” the Amount That My Insurance Doesn’t Pay?

Dental insurance pay-out is based on a contract between a patient and an insurance company.  Unless a dentist signs into a related contract with that insurance company and essentially agrees to work for it, he/she legally is not obligated to work at a reduced fee for that company.  An "out-of-network" dentist works for the patient and not for a dental…

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Cosmetic Dentistry | Why Do I Need A Reline When I Just Got My Dentures A Year Ago?

Cosmetic Dentistry | Why Do I Need a Reline When I Just Got My Dentures a Year Ago?

On average, dentures should be replaced approximately every 7 years, and after approximately 1 year for an immediately placed "treatment denture."  When a patient wears complete dentures, supporting bony ridges are subjected to unnatural forces that contribute to rapid loss of bone.  Therefore, the fit of the denture changes rapidly.  Secondly, ill-fitting dentures cause even more damage to supporting bone as…

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What Causes Cold Sores?

What Causes Cold Sores?

Cold sores start out with a tingling sensation on the firmer tissues of the lip, outside of the cheeks, corners of the mouth, and on the tongue.  Small blisters then form that are yellowish in color with red raised borders.  Unlike other types of mouth sores, cold sores are contagious! Cold sores are actually a form of the herpes virus…

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Dental Anesthetic: You’ll Use Novocain, Won’t You?

Dental Anesthetic: You’ll Use Novocain, Won’t You?

Novocain (procaine), has not been used in dentistry since the 1940's as a dental anesthetic.  It was a direct derivative of cocaine, which was the original surgical anesthetic discovered in the 1860's.  Although procaine was not addictive, it was a poor anesthetic because it took a long time to work once injected and wore off very quickly once it did. …

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What Kinds Of Dental Records Should I Get For My Child, In Case Of An Emergency?

What kinds of dental records should I get for my child, in case of an emergency?

Important Dental Records With the popularity of television programs that focus on forensic science, people are becoming much more aware of the need for adequate forensic records (like certain dental records)... before a crisis occurs.  Dentists play a crucial role in forensic science. Although not many of us are actually forensically trained, we are expert record keepers of very valuable…

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