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Posts for: January, 2017

By S & G Family Dentistry
January 26, 2017
Category: Oral Health
Tags: sleep apnea  

Obstructive sleep apnea is a sleep-related breathing disorder that affects people of all ages. It occurs because of reduced or interrupted sleep apnearespiratory airflow caused by soft tissues in the back of the throat collapsing during sleep. These tissues vibrate as air passes by and makes the lower jaw slip back blocking the airway. A person with sleep apnea will wake up countless times during the night leading to reduced quality of sleep and other symptoms as a result of poor sleep. With the help of Snoring and Sleep Apnea Dental Treatment Center in Leawood, KS, your symptoms can be relieved or improved upon. Dr. Nancy Addy and Dr. Jarrett Grosdidier are well versed in various treatment methods that can benefit patients of all ages.

Risk Factors Associated With Sleep Apnea

There are many risk factors leading to increased incidences of sleep apnea. Here are some examples:

  • Excess Weight
  • Narrowed airway
  • Being older or male
  • Family history
  • Neck circumference
  • Use of sedatives or alcohol
  • Smoking
  • Congestion in the nasal passages

All of these things can contribute to someone developing or having severe incidents of obstructive sleep apnea episodes. Sleep apnea can lead to irritability, daytime sleepiness, poor memory, headaches and high blood pressure.

How a Leawood Sleep Apnea Specialists Can Help

At Snoring and Sleep Apnea Dental Treatment Center, a variety of oral appliances can be used to treat sleep apnea patients. These treatment options help to re-position the jaw so that the tongue moves away reducing the risk of obstruction. Not all sleep apnea treatment work for every patient, so a comprehensive evaluation and exam are required before these treatments are prescribed. A professional can properly fit, adjust, monitor and treat complications associated with this type of therapy, but, for some patient, corrective jaw surgery may be required if oral appliances are not successful at reducing the risk of obstruction during sleep.

If you are interested in finding out what treatments are available at Snoring and Sleep Apnea Dental Treatment Center in Leawood, KS, call (931) 451-2929 today.

By S & G Family Dentistry
January 20, 2017
Category: Oral Health

Are bleeding gums something you should be concerned about? Dear Doctor magazine recently posed that question to Dr. Travis Stork, an emergency room physician and host of the syndicated TV show The Doctors. He answered with two questions of his own: “If you started bleeding from your eyeball, would you seek medical attention?” Needless to say, most everyone would. “So,” he asked, “why is it that when we bleed all the time when we floss that we think it’s no big deal?” As it turns out, that’s an excellent question — and one that’s often misunderstood.

First of all, let’s clarify what we mean by “bleeding all the time.” As many as 90 percent of people occasionally experience bleeding gums when they clean their teeth — particularly if they don’t do it often, or are just starting a flossing routine. But if your gums bleed regularly when you brush or floss, it almost certainly means there’s a problem. Many think bleeding gums is a sign they are brushing too hard; this is possible, but unlikely. It’s much more probable that irritated and bleeding gums are a sign of periodontal (gum) disease.

How common is this malady? According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, nearly half of all  Americans over age 30 have mild, moderate or severe gum disease — and that number increases to 70.1 percent for those over 65! Periodontal disease can occur when a bacteria-rich biofilm in the mouth (also called plaque) is allowed to build up on tooth and gum surfaces. Plaque causes the gums to become inflamed, as the immune system responds to the bacteria. Eventually, this can cause gum tissue to pull away from the teeth, forming bacteria-filled “pockets” under the gum surface. If left untreated, it can lead to more serious infection, and even tooth loss.

What should you do if your gums bleed regularly when brushing or flossing? The first step is to come in for a thorough examination. In combination with a regular oral exam (and possibly x-rays or other diagnostic tests), a simple (and painless) instrument called a periodontal probe can be used to determine how far any periodontal disease may have progressed. Armed with this information, we can determine the most effective way to fight the battle against gum disease.

Above all, don’t wait too long to come in for an exam! As Dr. Stork notes, bleeding gums are “a sign that things aren’t quite right.”  If you would like more information about bleeding gums, please contact us or schedule an appointment. You can read more in the Dear Doctor magazine article “Bleeding Gums.” You can read the entire interview with Dr. Travis Stork in Dear Doctor magazine.

By S & G Family Dentistry
January 05, 2017
Category: Oral Health
Tags: tmd   tmj   jaw pain  

As many as 36 million adults in the U.S. suffer from some form of chronic jaw pain. What’s more, many of these may also experience other painful conditions like arthritis or chronic fatigue in other parts of their body.

Chronic jaw pain is actually a group of difficult to define disorders collectively referred to as temporomandibular joint disorders (TMJD or also TMD). TMD not only refers to pain symptoms of the temporomandibular (jaw) joints but also of the jaw muscles and surrounding connective tissue. Most physicians and dentists agree TMD arises from a complex range of conditions involving inheritable factors, gender (many sufferers are women of childbearing age), environment and behavior.

A recent survey of approximately 1,500 TMD patients found that nearly two-thirds of them also suffered from three or more related health problems like fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, rheumatoid arthritis, headaches, depression and problems sleeping. The understanding of TMD’s connection with these other conditions is in its early stages of research, but there’s avid interest among healthcare providers to learn more and possibly devise new treatments for TMD in coordination with these other related conditions.

In the meantime, TMD patients continue to respond best with the traditional approach to treatment, including physical therapy, thermal (hot or cold) compresses to the area of pain, medication and modifying the diet with more easier to chew foods. In extreme cases, jaw surgery may be recommended; however, success with this approach has been mixed, so it’s advisable to get a second opinion before choosing to undergo a surgical procedure.

Hopefully, further study about TMD and its connection with other conditions may yield newer treatments to ease the pain and discomfort of all these conditions, including TMD. You can stay up to date on these and other developments for coping with the discomfort of TMD at and through your healthcare provider team.

If you would like more information on TMD, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Chronic Jaw Pain and Associated Conditions.”