Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Ouch! That Really Hurts!

You recognize the familiar pain, but what is causing it? Did you know that hot, acidic, cold or even sticky foods can stimulate nerves within and around the teeth and gums that can cause sensitivity reactions?

There also can be underlying issues such as a chipped tooth, worn down tooth enamel, old fillings have worked loose or you have receding gums. All of these conditions can result in unpleasant pain. The good news is that all of these conditions are repairable, especially if caught and treated early.

We find that patients often put off treatment due to the lack of dental insurance or the fear of a lengthy treatment schedule.  We have some great financing options available in our office, as well as OHP (Oregon Health Plan) options.  The desire to put off treating sensitive teeth can result in catastrophic consequences that would have been easily prevented had you come earlier for treatment.  Dr. Clark is more than happy to visit with you to discuss your options, he provides this consult at no charge to you.

In our office we carry some excellent products that can help with tooth sensitivity   We have a special toothpaste called Clinpro 5000 that has been a very effective and economical solution for many of our patients; it comes in Vanilla Mint, Bubble Gum and Spearmint flavors.  We also offer a multi-stage fluoride varnish treatment that can halt bacteria in it's tracks.

From now, until the end of the year we are offering a FREE fluoride treatment just for beginning your treatment with us.  That is a $47 value, yours for free. 

Enjoy the holidays without experiencing the constant nagging pain of sensitive teeth.  Speaking of the holidays, we are also offering our Home Whitening Kit at 50% off for our valued customers, so take advantage of these great savings and make your holidays brighter than ever!

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

What Is Gum Disease? published some great information on their website about the different types of gum disease that one can suffer with.  You've heard us say this many times before, and we'll keep sharing it again and again:  early prevention saves your teeth! Take a few minutes to learn about different stages of Periodontitus and if you can relate to any of these, contact our office immediately.


Untreated gingivitis can advance to periodontitis. With time, plaque can spread and grow below the gum line. Toxins produced by the bacteria in plaque irritate the gums. The toxins stimulate a chronic inflammatory response in which the body in essence turns on itself, and the tissues and bone that support the teeth are broken down and destroyed. Gums separate from the teeth, forming pockets (spaces between the teeth and gums) that become infected. As the disease progresses, the pockets deepen and more gum tissue and bone are destroyed. Often, this destructive process has very mild symptoms. Eventually, teeth can become loose and may have to be removed.
There are many forms of periodontitis. The most common ones include the following:
  • Aggressive periodontitis occurs in patients who are otherwise clinically healthy. Common features include rapid attachment loss and bone destruction and familial aggregation.
  • Chronic periodontitis results in inflammation within the supporting tissues of the teeth, progressive attachment and bone loss. This is the most frequently occurring form of periodontitis and is characterized by pocket formation and/or recession of the gingiva. It is prevalent in adults, but can occur at any age. Progression of attachment loss usually occurs slowly, but periods of rapid progression can occur.
  • Periodontitis as a manifestation of systemic diseases often begins at a young age. Systemic conditions such as heart disease, respiratory disease, and diabetes are associated with this form of periodontitis.
  • Necrotizing periodontal disease is an infection characterized by necrosis of gingival tissues, periodontal ligament and alveolar bone. These lesions are most commonly observed in individuals with systemic conditions such as HIV infection, malnutrition and immunosuppression.
Another simple fix that is often overlooked is to change the way you brush.  If your toothbrush bristles are too hard you can cause a lot of damage to your teeth and gums.  Hard brushing can actually remove or wear away enamel which increases your tooth sensitivity.  If you brush too vigorously, or not for the full two minutes then you will not be helping your sensitive teeth. Small changes can be applied to your oral health care routine and these changes will certainly pay off in the long run.

Don't forget out our year end special which includes 10% of all treatments, and once you start your treatment we will include a FREE fluoride varnish treatment that will strengthen the enamel on your teeth!  

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Gingivitis vs. Periodontitis

This month we are going to focus on the different stages of gum disease. Dr. Clark truly believes that knowledge is power; the more you know, the more control you can take over your oral health care.'s website explains the beginning stage of gum disease:  Gingivitis.  Take a minute to read through the common factors of gingivits and see if you or one of your family members may be experiencing the early signs of this unpleasant condition.


Untreated periodontal disease can eventually lead to tooth loss and other health problems.
Gingivitis is the mildest form of periodontal disease. It causes the gums to become red, swollen, and bleed easily. There is usually little or no discomfort at this stage. Gingivitis is often caused by inadequate oral hygiene. Gingivitis is reversible with professional treatment and good oral home care.
Factors that may contribute to gingivitis include, diabetes, smoking, aging, genetic predisposition, systemic diseases and conditions, stress, inadequate nutrition, puberty, hormonal fluctuations, pregnancy, substance abuse, HIV infection, and certain medication use.
The Academy of General Dentistry in their "Know Your Teeth" series share the following information about gingivitis:

Healthy gums appear coral pink, firm and form a sharp point where they meet the tooth. When excessive amounts of bacteria and food debris build up in the spaces between the teeth and gums, a sticky material called plaque is formed.

A plaque build-up can develop and harden into calculus (tartar), which irritates the gums. Bacterial byproducts (or toxins) in the tartar cause gums to become infected, red and tender, a condition called gingivitis. Gingivitis is the beginning stage of periodontal disease.

If you do not receive professional cleaning to halt the spread of gingivitis, the infection will spread from the gums to the ligaments and bone supporting the teeth. The tissues and ligaments will be destroyed; infections are likely to develop, causing a gum abscess, a collection of pus and swelling of gum tissues. Teeth may become loose and the gums may recede, creating increased spaces between teeth.

Dentists treat gingivitis by cleaning teeth to remove plaque and tartar and prescribing special mouthwashes or topical treatments. Treatment for periodontal disease involves more serious action such as antibiotics and antimicrobials, deep scaling of the root surface, removing infected gum tissue or extracting teeth. To avoid these potentially painful symptoms and treatments, it is important to catch the disease in its earlier stages.

"Gum disease can develop within weeks," cautions Itzhak Brook, MD, MSc, lead author of the journal report. He reminds patients to prevent periodontal disease by regular flossing, brushing and dental checkups. In addition, maintaining a healthy diet and low levels of stress boost the body's natural immune system, which fights bacteria in the mouth.

Like with any illness, the earlier you catch it, the better chances you have of preventing further damage. There are many great products and services that we can assist you with that can literally reverse gum disease before it creates permanent damage in your mouth.

Please call us today if you are experiencing the early signs of gum disease.  We would be happy to visit with you and discuss the options available to help you get control of your oral health care.

Please Do Not Ignore 
the Warning Signs!

(541) 451-1440