Ocean, NJ Dentist | Periodontal Disease and Rheumatoid Arthritis

Dentist in Ocean

Periodontal disease and Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) share a complex relationship with one another. Both of these chronic conditions cause increased inflammation in the body. Both can lead to serious damage, especially if a patient does not seek prompt, effective treatment. However, the connection between these potentially destructive illnesses does not end with similarity of symptoms. If you have either periodontal disease or RA, you may benefit from learning more about the links between the two.

Periodontal disease is an inflammation of the gum tissue in the mouth. Patients with periodontal disease most often experience swelling, redness, sensitivity, and/or painful, bleeding gums. They will develop pockets where the gums begin to pull away from the teeth. These pockets are more difficult to properly clean, so are more prone to infection and bacteria that cause tooth decay. If not treated regularly, periodontal disease will worsen over time and can lead to tooth and bone loss.

RA is a chronic autoimmune disease where the protective immune response is triggered when no harmful viruses or bacteria are present. With no pathogens to attack, the white blood cells instead attack the joints, leading to pain, swelling, stiffness, and eventually deterioration of the joints. Since RA often affects the small joints of the hands and wrists, many patients have difficulty maintaining proper brushing and flossing habits. With less effective dental hygiene, patients with RA are at increased risk of developing, or worsening, periodontal disease.

Moreover, in a recent study, scientists looked at the effects of the bacterium porphyromonas gingivalis, which causes periodontal disease. They found that this bacterium can lead to earlier onset, more rapid progression of symptoms, and increased severity of RA. Fortunately, it was also discovered that successful treatment for periodontal disease can reduce RA pain and other symptoms.

If you have RA and are having difficulty maintaining your oral hygiene due to stiff, painful joints, consider these simple ideas:

  • Add a tennis ball or bicycle handlebar grip to make your toothbrush easier to hold.
  • Try replacing ordinary string floss with a water flosser that may be easier to hold and manipulate.
  • Use a pump-style toothpaste dispenser to avoid the need to squeeze and roll a small tube.
  • Have professional cleanings at least 2-3 times each year.
  • Schedule a periodontal screening annually.
  • Ask your dental hygienist for more ideas on making your daily regimen work for you.

For more information regarding periodontal disease and rheumatoid arthritis, contact our office to schedule a consultation.

804 West Park Avenue, Ste 1L., in Ocean Township, N.J.

(732) 493.8030

07712 Dentist | 6 Facts You Didn’t Know About Your Toothbrush

Dentist Near Me

Do you ever think about your toothbrush? You use it twice a day, but how much do you know about it? We’ve compiled a list of interesting toothbrush facts. The next time you brush, consider these bits of trivia.

  1. Toothbrushes may be less common than mobile devices

It is believed that more people own and use a mobile device than those who own and use a toothbrush. With nearly 8 billion mobile devices, the world has more mobile phones, tablets, and other gear than people. However, only 3.5 billion people are estimated to use a toothbrush.

  1. Origin story

It is believed that the first modern toothbrush was invented by a prisoner in England. Sometime around 1780, William Addis created a toothbrush from bone and used swine bristle for the brush.

  1. A long history

Long before Mr. Addis invented what we know as the toothbrush, ancient Egyptians, Babylonians, and Chinese crafted tools for cleaning their teeth. The ancient Chinese used “chewing sticks” to freshen breath as early as 1600 BCE.

  1. What are the bristles?

Originally, toothbrush bristles were primarily made from cow hairs or boar hair. Today, nylon is the material of choice, and has been since the 1930s.

  1. What color is your toothbrush?

Blue is the most common toothbrush color. The second most common color is red.

  1. A home for bacteria

More than 100 million bacteria call your toothbrush home. You don’t get sick regularly because, like your toothbrush, your mouth is home to hundreds of millions of bacteria. Your body is quite effective at fighting off these germs, but if you don’t change your toothbrush regularly or share with someone else, you might catch an illness.

Now that you are a toothbrush expert, spread the word about the importance of regular brushing. Be sure to brush for two minutes twice each day. The American Dental Association recommends that you change your toothbrush every three to four months. If you have a weakened immune system or have been sick recently, you should replace your toothbrush.

For more dental care tips, or to schedule your next visit to our office, please contact us.

804 West Park Avenue, Ste 1L.
Ocean Township, N.J.

(732) 493.8030

Ocean Dentist | Bad Breath Busters

While dragons breathing fire is pretty cool, no one wants to be the human version of that, breathing such a potent smell that it acts like an inferno, keeping others at a distance. Halitosis is the fancy name for bad breath, but there’s nothing fancy about unpleasant odors emanating from your mouth — or the health problems that can be associated with them.

What Causes Bad Breath?

Food is one of the top culprits. When stuck between your teeth, food can lead to unpleasant odors (particularly if it’s strong-smelling to begin with, like onions or garlic). And it’s not until you’ve completely digested a particular food that it stops affecting your breath.

In addition to yellowing your teeth, tobacco doesn’t do any favors for your breath. Certain medications can also be to blame. Illnesses, too, can temporarily cause halitosis, particularly respiratory tract infections like bronchitis and pneumonia.

Everyone’s experienced morning breath. That’s because your mouth gets dry while you sleep, and saliva helps to clear away those particles that can cause bad smells. Some people experience dry mouth during the day as well. Drinking lots of water and breathing through your nose instead of your mouth can help with this.

So Fresh and So Clean

How can you keep your breath sweet-smelling all day? The best way is to brush and floss regularly. Keeping your teeth clean keeps gum disease at bay, clears out all those lingering food particles, and reduces odor-causing bacteria. Remember to brush your tongue as well, or use a tongue scraper. A note of caution: When brushing or scraping the tongue, be gentle. Excessive scraping can harm taste buds over a long time.

If you find particular foods always make your breath bad, avoid those when you’ll be in situations where you’re interacting with people.

In addition to drinking water to keep your mouth moist, chewing sugarless gum can promote the production of saliva.

Mouth rinses are another great choice, but use moderation with ones that contain alcohol. Alcohol in excess can be carcinogenic, especially when combined with cigarette smoke.

Be sure to come in for regular checkups. If you’re developing gum disease, we can treat it, which will improve your breath. Mouth odor can also indicate diabetes, gastric issues, or other medical problems. We can help you figure out the cause of your halitosis and guide you in the right direction toward a solution.