SERVICE SPOTLIGHT: OZONE THERAPY

WHAT IS OZONE? 

Ozone is an activated form of oxygen where there are actually three atoms of oxygen attached together. Ozone is far more energetic and oxidative than oxygen, which is what makes it so valuable to us for many applications.

Oxygen/Ozone therapy has been used in medicine and dentistry around the world for decades. There are hundreds of professional studies documenting oxygen/ozone therapy’s healing properties. During the first world war doctors familiar with ozone’s antibacterial properties, applied it topically to infected wounds and discovered ozone not only remedied infection, but also had hemodynamic and anti-inflammatory properties.[1]

HOW DOES OZONE WORK?

Oxygen/ozone therapy in the context of dentistry exposes a patient’s teeth and gums to the ozone for a very short time, breaking down harmful microorganisms without harming surrounding tissue.

USES IN DENTISTRY

Periodontal disease: Ozone can be used to help treat periodontal disease by using ozonated water flushed below the gum line and/or ozone gas infiltrated into the gum tissue and supporting tissues.

Root canals: Ozone can be used during root canal treatments to kill bacteria, sterilize the canal system and to stimulate faster healing.

Decay: Ozone can be used to kill decay-causing bacteria. Since ozone is a gas, it can permeate into areas below the gum line, into the grooves of teeth and over the smooth surfaces of the teeth and will kill bacteria on contact. Because ozone acts to re-calcify tooth structure, areas of the tooth that have been treated with ozone are stronger than what was there before.

Sensitivity: Because ozone can harden compromised tooth structure, flooding a sensitive area or tooth with ozone gas can effectively eliminate sensitivity. Patients’ sensitivity issues can be addressed successfully with ozone therapy.

Safety: Ozone does not have any contraindications with other medications, therefore cross-reactions are not a concern at all. You cannot be allergic to ozone, because you cannot be allergic to oxygen.

For more information on ozone therapy, check out our page or give us a call to discuss this treatment option for yourself.

1. Stoker G. Ozone in chronic middle ear deafness. Lancet. 1902;160:1187–8.

SERVICE SPOTLIGHT : SLEEP APNEA THERAPY

Editor’s Note: this article originally appeared in the summer edition of Coastal Sport & Wellness. Be sure to pick up a copy today!

Sleep Apnea Can Kill You – It Killed Carrie Fisher –

Carrie Fisher (Princess Leia in Star Wars) died on 12/27/16 at age 60. She died of cardiac arrest, four days after experiencing a medical emergency during a flight from London to Los Angeles. The Los Angeles County coroner’s office revealed “sleep apnea with other conditions: atherosclerotic heart disease and drug use” were major contributing factors to her sudden death. 

Dr. Neomi Shah and her colleagues at Yale University studied sleep apnea. They noted, “when a person has sleep apnea for 4 or 5 years, his or her risk of having a heart attack is increased by 30%”.

What is Obstructive Sleep Apnea?

Obstructive sleep apnea, or OSA, is basically a mechanical problem while a person is asleep. The mechanical obstruction can occur when the throat muscles intermittently relax and block the airway during sleep. This can occur many times during sleep. Usually, a person would awaken suddenly and gasp for breath.

Frequently with OSA, the tongue falls back against the soft palate, and then the soft palate falls back against the back of the throat. This closes the airway. If the airway closes, then the person who is asleep will go through the motion of expanding the chest to breathe; however, no air will enter the lungs.

In severe cases, this could be life-threatening.

How is Sleep Apnea Diagnosed?

A medical doctor can diagnose this serious disorder either by a sleep study performed at a sleep clinic, or by wearing a special testing device while sleeping at home.

Here are some symptoms and signs of OSA:

  • Snoring loudly and frequently
  • High blood pressure with no apparent cause
  • Gasping for breath or choking while asleep
  • Thickened tongue along with gritting & grinding of teeth at night
  • Daytime fatigue
  • Waking with an excessively dry mouth or sore throat

Treatment of OSA

1. The Lifestyle Changes

If you are obese, smoke, or drink alcohol in excess, then you should seriously consider losing weight, quitting smoking; and limiting alcohol.

2. C-PAP – Continuous Positive Airway Pressure

Some people with moderate to severe sleep apnea require a mechanical device to help them breath. One machine is a C-PAP device. This is a small pump with a mask that covers the nose and mouth. It delivers a supply of compressed air.

3. MAD – Mandibular Advancement Device

In mild cases of sleep apnea, a dentist can customize a dental device to help open the airway. This dental appliance looks like and fits like a “bite guard”. It actually moves the lower jaw slightly forward when sleeping. It positions the jaw and the tongue in such a way that it increases space in the back of the throat. In this way, it helps to open up the airway.

4. Surgery

Various surgical procedures are available as a last resort. These surgical procedures can modify the soft tissues around the throat to open and help maintain a healthy airway

Final Thoughts

OSA can be annoying to you and to your sleep partner. However, OSA can create serious medical problems and even death. If you experience any symptoms or signs that might suggest OSA, have your medical doctor schedule you for proper testing. Early treatment could be lifesaving.

SERVICE SPOTLIGHT : Chao Pinhole® Technique

A couple months ago, Dr. Porcelli attended a workshop with Dr. John Chao, creator of the Chao Pinhole® Surgical Technique [PST®]. Dr. Porcelli was very excited to learn about this new technique with its creator and enjoyed the workshop immensely. Dr. Chao personally oversaw the results of the doctors practice.  One reason Dr. Porcelli was excited to learn this new procedure was because of the minimally invasive way it helps treat gum recession.

This procedure takes traditional gum recession treatments and turns them on it’s head.

Traditional gum recession treatments involve the use of donor tissue or soft tissue grafts in order to rebuild the gumline. This soft tissue would be sutured in place and would join with existing gum tissue as it healed.  Instead of grafting the gums with other tissue and then stitching and suturing the graft in the mouth, this technique uses a needle and special surgical tools to gently loosen the gum tissue and glide it over the receded part of the tooth. This makes the procedure incision and suture free! Not to mention it minimizes post-operative symptoms like pain, swelling and bleeding.  Look at some of the before & afters on Dr. Chao’s website to see the beautiful results!

The benefits of the Chao Pinhole® Surgical Technique are many:

• Less discomfort for the patient after treatment
• Faster recovery for the patient than traditional grafting
• No need for uncomfortable sutures
• No need for scalpels or invasive surgical tools
• No need to take donor tissue from the patient’s palate
• Excellent, natural-looking, long-lasting results

Learn more about PST® and watch this video, if you still have questions about the procedure or feel like you may be a good candidate for this technique, give us a call today: 843.593.8123, we’d love to schedule a consultation with you!

 

5 Lifestyle Tweaks

This article originally appeared on drdaneberg.com on April 2nd, 2018. 

This month, I start my 6th year of living a Primal Lifestyle. I wrote about My Primal Lifestyle in 2016. Since then, I refined and perfected the ways I do things. Over the last 12 months, I began to incorporate my 5 Essential Lifestyle Tweaks to further improve what I had been doing.

MY JOURNEY

Back in 2007, I had a stroke and could have died. Yet, I didn’t learn about a primal diet and a primal way of living until 2013. Fortunately for me, embracing a Primal Lifestyle in 2013 saved my life.

Fast forward to April 2018 when I will be 71 years old. I feel healthier today than I have ever felt. My blood chemistries have improved considerably from where they were in 2013 – with additional impressive test results since I included these 5 tweaks.

Following my stroke in 2007, my physicians prescribed 7 medications for me to take for the rest of my life. Not being comfortable with that scenario, I reinvented my life and have weaned off my last medication this month.

The way I live is based on a nutrient-dense diet, efficient exercise, restorative sleep, and stress reduction – all of which I discuss in my book, Crazy-Good Living. In addition to all this, recent medical research is uncovering new and exciting facts about the importance of the gut microbiome and the mitochondria. Both areas are where I have refined and focused my current efforts.

THE GUT & MITOCHONDRIA

I recently published two articles – one about the gut and one about mitochondria. Big Bang Theory of Chronic Disease describes the importance of the gut as the starting point for most systemic diseases. Mitochondria, Gut Bacteria, and Vitamin K2 describes the importance of mitochondrial health for the proper function of almost every cell and organ system. Both articles are loaded with links to peer-reviewed medical papers to support my conclusions.

FIVE ESSENTIAL LIFESTYLE HACKS

The following 5 tweaks are focused methods, which I have added to my primal lifestyle program. They are reported to improve the gut microbiome and the body’s mitochondria, an area of focus for me currently.

  1. INTERMITTENT AND MULTI-DAY FASTING Published medical research has demonstrated that fasting is beneficial in a variety of ways. It improves fat-burning, builds muscle, enhances brain health, reduces oxidative stress, improves mitochondria health, and reduces inflammation to name a few. Several months ago, I wrote about my fasting experience.
  2. FOUR MINUTE DAILY EXCERCISE created by Dr. Zachary Bush This may be as effective as high intensity interval training. It is reported to increase the production of nitric oxide. I try to include this exercise protocol several times a week.
  3. SPORE-BASED PROBIOTICS  A randomized and double-blind study published in 2017 demonstrated that spore-based probiotics grow in the gut and can increase the diversity of other healthy bacteria in the gut. Personally, I take this probiotic daily along with the Vitamin supplement I discuss next.
  4. VITAMIN K2 This unique form of vitamin K helps prevent inflammation and move calcium into the proper areas in the body. In addition, medical research using an animal model showed that vitamin K2 could rescue damaged mitochondria
  5. PULSED ELECTROMAGNETIC FIELDS  Pulsed electromagnetic field therapy improves the energy of cells. In this way, it may improve the functioning of mitochondria, and thereby improve many chronic conditions. In the next few weeks, I will devote an entire Blog to the science and application of this important medical application. One company that offers this technology in the United States is Quantum Resonance Systems

I have experienced personal benefits from these 5 tweaks. My results are anecdotal; I am not part of a controlled study. You may not have the same effects as I have. The facts are that the gut microbiome is critical for overall health, and the mitochondria in every cell of our body are critical for the healthy functioning of each cell.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Dr. Alvin Danenberg, is a periodondist, Certified Medical Practitioner, Primal Health Coach, and ADAPT-trained Health Professional. His first book, Crazy Good Living, is based on ancestral nutrition and lifestyle. He offers a 12 week body coaching program for people interested in transforming the way they think about themselves and the food they ingest. He shares his knowledge and thoughts at: drdanenberg.com.  He would be happy to engage face to face or virtually!

Fad Dieting vs. The Real Diet

This article originally appeared at drdanenberg.com on February 26th, 2018.

Fads come and go – especially dieting fads. It’s always the “next best thing” that replaces the previous “next best thing”. These diets seem to work to some extent until they don’t. Or, the fad diet you’re on makes you sick. What do you do? Move onto the “next best thing”?

Some of these diets are based on facts. Most of them are based on hype and anecdotal justifications. When a celebrity endorses a new fad diet, the masses rush in to become a part of the “next best thing”.

This style of dieting sets you up for one experiment after another. The Real Diet, which I’ll discuss near the end of this article, should complement your body’s requirements to survive and thrive. It should be a lifestyle diet and not a “next best thing” diet.

TIMELINE OF DIETS

Rene Lynch wrote an excellent article, which sets up a timeline of major diet crazes.[1] There are many diets that have gone in and out of favor over the decades. I’ve summarized some of the earliest ones as well as some of the more bizarre ones below:

1830: One of the first “diet crazes” was created by Reverend Sylvester Graham. He emphasized a high-fiber diet based on whole grain breads. His work inspired the manufacturing of graham flour and graham crackers.

1863: William Banting was an Englishman who was obese. To improve his own health and lose weight, he developed a low-carb diet and wrote about it in “Letter on Corpulence”. He was the first to popularize a weight-loss program based on limiting carbohydrates, especially starchy and sugary foods.

1925: Of all things, there was The Cigarette Diet.  Lucky Strike, a brand of cigarette, created an advertising campaign with the slogan, Reach for a Lucky instead of a sweet”.

1928: The Inuit Diet became popular with the publication of “Studies on the Metabolism of Eskimos” by Peter Heinsbecker. His book emphasized eating meat, raw fish, and whale blubber.

1930: The Grapefruit Diet was a 12-day crash diet. It required eating a grapefruit or drinking grapefruit juice at each meal.

1934: The Banana and Milk Diet was created by a medical doctor at Johns Hopkins University for his patients with diabetes. The diet consisted of eating four to six bananas and drinking three to four glasses of milk every day for two weeks. Then, for the next two weeks, patients would eat only meat, fish, eggs and vegetables, avoiding other fats or carbohydrates.

1950: The Cabbage Soup Diet is still popular today. It’s a 7-day diet that consists mainly of fat free cabbage soup, eaten two to three times a day. Other specific foods are allowed as the diet progresses over the course of 7 days.

1962: The Drinking Man’s Diet was published by Robert Cameron. He suggested dieters should count carbs and not calories. He stated that his diet, “… would let you have two martinis before lunch, and a thick steak generously spread with Sauce Béarnaise, so that you could make your sale in a relaxed atmosphere and go back to the office without worrying about having gained so much as an ounce.”

1975: The Cookie Diet was the baby of Dr. Sanford Siegal, a physician who specialized in treating overweight patients. He created a low-calorie cookie made with his secret “hunger-controlling” formula. These cookies were touted to keep appetite down and calorie-count low. There was a scheduled plan for eating Dr. Siegal’s cookies during the day along with a low-calorie meal for dinner.

1976: The Sleeping Beauty Diet suggested that being sedated is necessary to help people lose weight. It recommended taking sedatives when hungry to avoid eating too much. In essence, a person would sleep instead of eating.

1981: Judy Mazel created The Beverly Hills Diet to help her lose weight. It was based on the actions of enzymes on various foods as they were being digested. The diet detailed when specific foods could be eaten and in what combinations they should be eaten.

THE REAL DIET

Enter The Real Diet. It’s not a fad at all; it’s a lifestyle. It’s my “slogan” for what humans have been eating over the course of evolution – different foods based on different locations throughout the world.

For the last 200,000 years or so, modern humans – our primal ancestors – have learned to survive and thrive on the foods that were endemic to the areas of the world where these people lived. The DNA of our ancestors slowly evolved to become the blueprint, which guides our lives today. Our gut microbiome, which is continuously evolving more rapidly than our human cells, plays one of the most important roles in our overall health.[2] Our human cells and our gut microbiome require specific foods to provide the nutrients for us to survive and thrive, just as was true for our primal ancestors.

There is enormous variation in the foods that can provide our body with everything it needs. However, over-processed foods, ingested chemicals and medicines, and an overly-antiseptic lifestyle have caused our cells and our microbiome to malfunction.

Fad diets are not the answer. The “next best thing” should be The Real Diet. We need to return to a nutrient-dense, anti-inflammatory way of eating supported by a lifestyle embedded with efficient exercise, restorative sleep, and reduction in all forms of stresses on the body.

If you are interested in jump starting your change to THE  REAL DIET, sign up today for Dr. Danenberg’s 12 Week Total Body Coaching program! You will get weekly worksheets, coaching and recipes to help you make a lifestyle change not just another diet fail. 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Dr. Alvin Danenberg, is a periodondist, Certified Medical Practitioner, Primal Health Coach, and ADAPT-trained Health Professional. His first book, Crazy Good Living, is based on ancestral nutrition and lifestyle. He offers a 12 week body coaching program for people interested in transforming the way they think about themselves and the food they ingest. He shares his knowledge and thoughts at: drdanenberg.com.  He would be happy to engage face to face or virtually!

11 Ways to De-Stress

This article was originally written by Dr. Alvin Danenberg and was originally published on his website, drdanenberg.com on July 25th, 2016. 

11 Proven Ways to De-Stress Your Stress 

Physical stressors (like excessive exercise, lack of sleep, injuries, and infections) take their toll on your body. Environmental stressors (like drugs, toxic substances, damaging foods, and other pollutants) also take their toll. However, psychological stressors (like worry, depression, anger, fear, life’s challenges, and overall happiness issues) are more prevalent in our society today than ever before with devastating results. Almost everyone tries to deal with these and wants to get a handle on them. Prescription medicines seem to be the go-to solution. They aren’t the answer!

What really works for psychological stress? What has been proven to de-stress your stress without drugging you up? Here are 11 proven ideas, which are great starting points:

  1. Be present. It boils down to one-on-one. Focus on the moment – not on the past or on the future – just on the moment. For example, if you have an important task you need to accomplish, you can stress out because you think there are a million other things waiting to be done. Or you can be present and focus completely on that task. Be present one-on-one – you and that one task. When you’re done, you can move on to the next task.
  2. Just say, “NO!” If you are stressed because you feel forced to do more than you physically and emotionally want to handle, then don’t. Just say, “No!” Limit and prioritize your time to do those things you want and need to do.
  3. Avoid those people who stress you out. There may be some people that put pressures on you, and these people may not be important in your life. If this is the case, then avoid them.
  4. Reduce your dependence on the news. Constant news on TV and other media can be upsetting and depressing. If these sources create undue stress, then stop watching or listening to them. Get the news you need, but don’t inundate yourself with it.
  5. Give up on pointless arguments. You don’t have to win every battle. You don’t have to compromise your morals or ethics either, but you could assume enough is enough and just move on.
  6. Reframe situations that stress you. Try to place situations in a different context. For example, if you’re stuck in traffic, you might be able to listen to a podcast that you were planning to do later on, or you could just use this precious time to decompress or think through some of the priorities you have scheduled for the rest of your day.
  7. Lower your expectations and standards where possible. You don’t have to be 100% successful with every task. Sometimes 80% is good enough. When it is not, then strive for the remaining 20%.
  8. Realize things are what they are. There are things you can’t change. However, you don’t have to compromise with those things you can and want to change.
  9. Discover gratitude. Be thankful for the loved ones in your life and for those positive things you have accomplished in your life.
  10. Experience empathy for yourself and for others. You will learn compassion for yourself, and you will better understand what affects others.
  11. Explore and practice specific stress management practices. These might include progressive muscle relaxation techniques, meditation, yoga, tai chi, and various forms of exercise.

This list is far from exhaustive, but a great starting point.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Dr. Alvin Danenberg, is a periodondist, Certified Medical Practitioner, Primal Health Coach, and ADAPT-trained Health Professional. His first book, Crazy Good Living, is based on ancestral nutrition and lifestyle. He offers a 12 week body coaching program for people interested in transforming the way they think about themselves and the food they ingest. He shares his knowledge and thoughts at: drdanenberg.com.  He would be happy to engage face to face or virtually!
sleep, nose-breathing and mouth taping

Sleep, Nose-Breathing & Mouth Taping

bed, bedroom, sleep well

This article originally posted by Dr. Danenberg on his website, November 6th, 2017. 

QUALITY OF SLEEP

Quality of sleep is critical for health.[1] One of the components of quality sleep is proper breathing while sleeping. Oxygen is actually a nutrient for your body – a life-critical nutrient. If you were to stop breathing, you would die. If you stopped breathing temporarily for any reason for just a few seconds, it could affect your overall health.[2] [3] [4] This is called “apnea.

Sometimes, apnea must be treated by a medical professional. Sometimes, a special customized dental appliance could be made to help keep your airway open or provide proper spacing for your tongue. However, to help you breathe properly, here are several suggestions:

  • Place your tongue to the upper front part of the roof of your mouth, just behind your upper front teeth. This helps to keep the position of your lower jaw in correct relationship to your upper jaw, and it also helps keep your airway open.
  • Breathe through your nose and not through your mouth. Breathing through your nose is the normal way to breathe. However, at times you may find your nose is “stuffy”. You could use a specialized tape that helps keep your nostrils open. An adhesive strip that is made of a spring-like band tapes to the outside of the bridge of your nose that gently pulls your nostrils wider. One brand is called Breathe Right Strips. They are available in most drug stores and from Amazon.
  • Keep your lips closed. Sometimes while you are sleeping, you may begin to open your mouth and breathe through your mouth.

IMPORTANCE OF NOSE-BREATHING

Nose-breathing is important because it helps in the production of nitric oxide.[6] Nitric oxide enhances memory and learning, regulates blood pressure, reduces inflammation, improves sleep quality, increases endurance and strength, improves immune function, and supports healthy gum tissues.[7]

The body produces a large percentage of its nitric oxide from breathing through your nose as well as from nitrates in your saliva.[8] If you only breathed through your mouth, you might decrease the overall amount of beneficial nitric oxide that could be available to your body.
Also, mouth-breathing at night could cause you to wake up with a dry mouth. This isn’t comfortable. A dry mouth can …

  • reduce the healthy bacteria in your mouth, which can cause gum disease
  • promote cavities because the teeth are not being bathed in saliva, which helps teeth resist cavities through a process called remineralization
  • increase the overall acidity of the mouth, which in turn could increase tooth decay
  • cause bad breath

MOUTH-TAPING

So, here is a possible cure for mouth-breathing. It is “mouth-taping”.

With mouth-taping, you would actually tape your mouth shut. An easy way to do this is to use a piece of Micropore Tape manufactured by 3M. You would place the tape across your closed lips from one corner of your mouth to the other. Fold over a small piece of the tape on both ends to make a “tab”. This will make it easier to quickly remove. Using tape will train you to keep your mouth closed while you sleep. You can purchase Micropore Tape in most drug stores and from Amazon.

However, before you try to use mouth-tape when you are ready to go to sleep, I suggest that you try it for about a half-hour a couple of days before you go to sleep. This will help you get used to the feel to the tape. Then, when you are ready, start taping your mouth shut when you go to bed.

Mouth-taping not only forces you to breathe through your nose during sleep; it also could be a diagnostic tool. If you had to take the tape off during the night because you could not breathe through your nose, then you would know you didn’t breathe properly that night. If that were the case, you might need to schedule an appointment with a medical specialist to determine if you have sleep apnea and need medical treatment for your breathing issues.

SUMMARY

Get a good night’s sleep – about 7-8 hours. Breathe through your nose and not through your mouth. If simple techniques do not allow you to breathe through your nose at night, then you might have a form of sleep apnea. In that case, you might need to seek treatment from a medical or dental professional who is trained to evaluate your sleep disorder.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Dr. Alvin Danenberg, is a periodondist, Certified Medical Practitioner, Primal Health Coach, and ADAPT-trained Health Professional. His first book, Crazy Good Living, is based on ancestral nutrition and lifestyle. He offers a 12 week body coaching program for people interested in transforming the way they think about themselves and the food they ingest. He shares his knowledge and thoughts at: drdanenberg.com.  He would be happy to engage face to face or virtually!

10 Reasons You (May) Have Bad Breath

bad breath?

TEN REASONS YOU (MAY) HAVE BAD BREATH

We were inspired to create this article based on content we spotted on WebMD. No one likes to feel self conscious about their breath! This article talks about 10 reasons why you may have bad breath and how you can combat them.

HAPPY HOUR 

Grabbing a drink with your girls or drinking a couple brews with your bros could give you more than a hangover. Even though it’s a liquid, alcohol can actually dry out your mouth, which encourages the bacteria that cause halitosis, the medical term for bad breath. Drinks with caffeine, spicy foods, and cigarettes can, too. A dry mouth from not making as much saliva while you sleep also explains “morning breath.” It’s always a good idea to make sure you are getting plenty of water in a day to combat dry mouth.

YOUR TONGUE

Bacteria on the tongue is the leading cause of bad breath. Clean yours with your toothbrush, a teaspoon,  or a tongue scraper. Scrapers will do a slightly better job.

A LOW-CARB DIET

When you cut out carbs and boost the amount of protein you eat, your body starts burning fat for energy. That process makes compounds called ketones, which can cause bad breath. In this case, better dental hygiene won’t solve the problem, since that’s not the root cause. Sugar-free gum can help mask bad breath or a clove rinse can be helpful as well.

THE COMMON COLD

Respiratory tract infections like colds and bronchitis can also give you bad breath. That’s because odor-causing bacteria like to feed on mucus. And if you have a stuffy nose, you’re more likely to resort to mouth-breathing, which can dry out your mouth.

AN ULCER

A type of bacteria that causes ulcers, Helicobacter pylori, can also trigger bad breath, according to a study in the Journal of Medical Microbiology. Treating the bacteria may get rid of the stink. Your doctor can test you for H. pylori and prescribe antibiotics for it.

MEDICATIONS

More than 400 prescription and over-the-counter drugs, including antidepressants and allergy remedies, can stifle saliva flow. Saliva helps wash away food and bacteria, keeping bad breath at bay. Changing your medication isn’t always an option, so the American Dental Association recommends you stay hydrated and chew sugarless gum to keep your mouth moist.

TONSIL STONES

These small white-ish clusters — made up of hardened bacteria, food particles, dead cells, and mucus — get trapped in the ridges of your tonsils and the back of your tongue. They’re generally harmless except for the smell. They’ll often dislodge on their own, but you can sometimes speed the process by gargling with salt water.

DRIED FRUIT

It’s very high in sugar, and odor-causing bacteria love to feed on sugar. A 1/4 cup of raisins has 21 grams of sugar; the same amount of dried apricots has 17 grams. That’s like eating 4-5 teaspoons of pure sugar. Plus, dried fruit is sticky, so it can get trapped on and between your teeth. After a snack, be sure to floss and brush to help keep bad breath at bay.

ACID REFLUX /  HEARTBURN 

These are two symptoms of GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease), a common digestive disorder. Your bad breath may be from some undigested food coming back up, or it could be that irritation from stomach acid is giving you postnasal drip. Ask your doctor for help if you get heartburn often.

CRACKED TEETH AND FILLINGS

These can trap food particles and breed bacteria, resulting in cavities, gum disease, and bad breath. Ill-fitting dentures can cause the same problems. All the more reason to schedule your regular cleanings and exams with Bluffton Center for Dentistry!

essential oils natural remedies

Essential Oils : Natural Remedies

As a biological office we are fragrance conscious and we only use products that have essential oils. As we have learned more and more about the application and use of essential oils, this book has been an AMAZING resource! Some of our favorite essential oil remedies we wanted to share with you!  You can find the book as well as the suggested essential oils and materials from our Amazon Associates page too!

GUM DISEASE

Treat with clove oil each day is a great way to stop gum disease, but myrrh has powerful antibacterial properties that can help, too. As part of a total dental regimen, use a cotton swab to apply myrrh essential oil to your gums at least once a day until the gums have healed.

 

TOOTHACHE 

Toothaches happen for a number of reasons, including drama, infection, and inflammation. Pain may be dull and throbbing, or sharp and unbearable. Sensitivity to heat and cold as well as pain when chewing when common, and swollen or bleeding gums around the tooth may occur.  A neat clove treatment, where you use 1 drop of clove oil on your fingertip to rub the affected tooth and surrounding tissue, breathing through your mouth for 1 to 2 minutes to allow it to penetrate. Repeat this treatment every 2 to 3 hours as needed. In addition to the neat clove treatment, a cheek massage with German chamomile, clove and lemon essential oils is recommended to reduce inflammation and bring pain relief.

OIL PULLING

Oil pulling is a traditional Ayurveda practice. Essential oils, in combination with edible oils, are swished and held in the mouth to promote oral health, prevent bad breath, heal gums and detoxify the body. Major studies have shown that oil pulling can kill the bacteria that cause cavities, making it a good alternative to brushing with fluoride toothpaste.  This recipe for Grapefruit Detox is a wonderful way of adding oil pulling to your daily regimen.

BAD BREATH 

Halitosis happens to everyone at some point. Bad breath is sometimes caused by the foods you eat, but bacteria is more often the culprit. Brushing and flossing at least twice daily removes food particles, preventing bacterial buildup; natural remedies help eliminate even more bacteria. If your breath has changed suddenly and does not respond to improved oral hygiene and natural remedies, see your doctor, as halitosis can be a symptom of an underlying disease.  Clove oil is a powerful antibacterial agent that leaves a fresh, pleasant scent behind.  Find clove oil and bottles on our Amazon page, too.

jaw pain, TMJ

Causes & Treatment Options for Jaw Pain

This article originally appeared on Dr. Danenberg’s blog on October 3rd, 2016.

—–

jaw pain, TMJ

I saw Monique as a patient about a year ago. She entered my office saying, “My jaw pain is killing me.”

She had a root canal procedure performed on her lower right molar about 4 months before I saw her. She had a crown put on that tooth. Then, she began to have severe pain in that tooth, in her jaw muscles, and in her jaw joint.

At first, she thought that the root canal was failing and was the cause for her pain. That wasn’t the case at all. In a moment, you’ll read how I eliminated her pain in only one appointment.

WHAT IS JAW PAIN?

As a periodontist, I frequently treat jaw pain. Most pain comes from the jaw joint and the muscles that help chew food. This jaw pain may be called temporomandibular joint pain (TMJ) or temporomandibular disorders (TMD). Many of the causes of this type of jaw pain also can damage the jawbone around the roots of teeth.

Here’s the inside skinny about jaw pain:
About 60–70% of adults have experienced some symptoms of TMD. The most frequent complaint is pain either in the jaw joint or in the jaw muscles. Another common symptom is discomfort when opening the jaw, most obvious when eating or speaking. Popping and cracking sounds in the jaw joints when opening and closing may be present. Also, buzzing or ringing sounds in the ears are possible. (1)

9 CAUSES OF JAW PAIN

TMD is multifactorial, and there may be sources that are difficult to identify (2). Below are 9 related causes for TMD:

  1. Trauma (like a car accident) involving the jaw joint could create damage in the structures of the joint resulting in pain.
  2. Habits of clenching and grinding the teeth can damage the jaw joint and cause muscle pain. These habits also wiggle the roots of the teeth in the jawbone, which will damage the bone around the teeth and may cause tooth pain. Grinding also may crack teeth.
  3. Teeth that have been improperly restored by a dentist could cause increased pressure in the jaw joint and increased grinding habits.
  4. Poor nutrition and unhealthy digestion could cause chronic inflammation that could affect all joints in the body (example: rheumatoid arthritis).
  5. Emotional stress has been shown to create biochemical changes in the blood system that could increase chronic inflammation throughout the body and joints.
  6. Lack of sleep increases chronic inflammation in the blood system and can affect joints in the body.
  7. Excessive estrogen may increase inflammation and damage in the jaw joint.
  8. Infection in the joint will cause swelling and pain.
  9. Complications with your airway space that does not allow proper breathing and oxygenation can result in jaw pain.

TREATMENT OPTIONS FOR JAW PAIN

First, the most obvious potential causes must be addressed (3). If the bite is causing muscle and jaw soreness, then the bite must be corrected. Correcting heavy pressures on the chewing surfaces of the teeth by polishing these areas correctly may be all that is necessary to make the bite healthy. If a patient grinds his or her teeth habitually, sometimes a bite guard could be worn during sleep to reduce the pressures in the jaw joint. At other times, orthodontic treatment might be necessary to correct the bite.

Science also shows other factors affecting TMD. Emotional stress and lack of sleep have been reported to aggravate the symptoms of TMD (4). In addition, estrogen imbalance has been suggested to influence TMD, but some of the studies are contradictory (5). Based on these and other published research papers, the following actions could be considered:

  • Reduce stress
  • Get restorative sleep
  • Eat a nutrient-dense, anti-inflammatory diet to improve hormone balance
  • Avoid eating foods that contain chemicals, which could damage hormonal balance
  • Seek the advice of a myofunctional therapist and an orthodontist who are trained in proper jaw structure and creation of a healthy airway space
  • Investigate medications or surgery for TMD as last resorts.

 

MONIQUE’S DIAGNOSIS

Monique’s pain was related to her bite after her crown was made. The crown was improperly designed and shaped poorly. The chewing surfaces between that tooth and her upper teeth were bumping too hard. Since these pressures were too heavy, her jaw muscles went into spasm, which in turn caused her jaw pain. Monique couldn’t make this pain go away and didn’t know what was causing it.

All I needed to do for Monique was to determine the spots on the crown that were hitting her upper teeth too hard. I then reduced these heavy pressure points by smoothing and polishing the chewing surfaces so that her teeth came together properly. Immediately, she noticed her jaw was more comfortable.

 

PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER

Many factors affect jaw pain. The more obvious causes should be explored first. If grinding habits or bite problems exist, these must be corrected. Stress reduction, restorative sleep, and good nutrition to provide proper hormone balance must be implemented to reduce TMD symptoms. If symptoms persist, other treatment options could be considered to make the patient comfortable.

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