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All Posts in Category: Gums

Do You Need Professional Care for Your Toothache?

Whether it is a dull ache that comes and goes or the pain is one that throbs nearly constantly, a toothache is one of those medical conditions that can be difficult for someone to tell just how serious it is without a professional evaluation.

Common Causes of Toothache Pain

Many people might be surprised to learn that the most common reason for a toothache is the presence of either a dental cavity or tooth decay. This is why even the most minor toothache pain should be evaluated by a dentist to determine its underlying cause.

Gum disease often causes toothache pain as well. Without a professional exam by a dental team, however, it’s nearly impossible for someone to know if their oral issues are minor or serious. In fact, even seemingly minor issues like a cavity can lead to tooth decay and gum disease if it isn’t treated promptly and properly by a dentist.

An injury to the mouth or directly to a tooth can also be the origination of a toothache. An abscessed tooth can cause toothache pain as well. This pocket of pus that is the result of a bacterial infection can form in a myriad of places in your mouth.

Does Your Toothache Get Worse at Night?

Many people find that their toothache pain doesn’t bother them very much throughout the day but that it makes its presence known as they are trying to get to sleep. This often leads to the thought that the problem must not be very serious or else the toothache would be unbearable all throughout the day. This is a false assumption that can lead to further problems if not dealt with promptly.

Some people experience a toothache that is the result of issues that are not related to the teeth. For example, if your teeth begin to throb at night when you try to go to sleep, the cause could be sinus problems that have trapped mucous. Once you are lying down, the blood puts more pressure on your sinuses which can lead to a toothache.

Could Seasonal Allergies be Causing Your Toothache?

If you’re sneezing, blowing your nose and wiping your watering eyes as you struggle to deal with seasonal allergies, you probably aren’t thinking about their connection to your oral health. This is where your body’s defense mechanisms in the form of your sinuses could lead to tooth pain, especially in the area of your upper molars. This is because swollen sinuses can push down on the roots of these teeth and cause you to have discomfort.

One way to determine if it’s allergies causing your toothache is to try an over-the-counter antihistamine and see if your toothache disappears. If it does not, if your pain continues even after your allergy symptoms are relieved or if you feel tooth pain somewhere else besides your upper molars, an appointment with your dentist is in order.

A toothache that lasts more than a few days should also be evaluated by a dentist. Not only can the true cause be found but you can get pain relief. Contact Creative Dentist to schedule an appointment today.

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healthy gums perfect teeth

Healthy Gums are the First Step to Perfect Teeth

Brushing and flossing properly on a regular basis is necessary to keep your teeth in their best condition. However, another significant factor in having perfect teeth is having gums that are healthy. When you are taking good care of your gums, you are also doing the same for your teeth.

Gum Disease

While the build-up of plaque can affect your teeth, the bacteria present in that substance can also begin to accumulate along and underneath the gum line, causing a mild type of gum disease called gingivitis. Gingivitis can irritate your gums, causing them to swell. Most importantly, it can lead to more severe gum disease and dental issues.

Periodontitis is an advanced form of gum disease that causes the deterioration of the bones that keep your teeth in place. Advanced stages of periodontitis can result in the destruction of the bones and fibers supporting your teeth, which can require that your teeth be removed. In addition to compromising the health of your teeth, periodontitis can also affect your overall health.

Some symptoms of gum disease may include:

  • Red, tender or swollen gums
  • Gums that have a tendency to bleed easily
  • Gums that have drawn from your teeth
  • Chronic bad breath
  • Constantly having bad taste in your mouth

How to Keep Your Gums Healthy

There are several things you can do to make sure that your gums are in the best of health:

  • Stop smoking. There is a strong link between smoking and the onset of gum disease. Smoking can make it harder for you to resist a gum infection by making your immune system weaker. The habit can also affect how well your gums can heal themselves if they are damaged.
  • Floss. Flossing at least one time a day can help remove bits of food and plaque that the bristles of your toothbrush are unable to reach. You can floss after brushing or after a meal.
  • Get dental cleanings. One of the benefits of having regular dental visits is that your dentist can give your gums and teeth a professional cleaning and detect any early signs of gum disease. Professional cleanings are also the only way to remove plaque that has hardened into tartar. Also, gingivitis can be reversed with regular flossing, brushing and dental cleanings.
  • Use the right type of mouthwash. Although it should not replace brushing and flossing, washing out your mouth with a therapeutic mouthwash can help eliminate plaque, prevent gingivitis and slow down how quickly tartar can develop. Be sure to choose a mouthwash that has the ADA seal that indicates that is considered safe.
  • Use fluoride toothpaste. Fluoride can benefit your gums just as well as your teeth. As with your mouthwash, it is best to choose the toothpaste with the ADA seal of acceptance.
  • Brush properly. The first step to ensuring that your gums are healthy is to keep in mind that they are composed of relatively fragile tissue. This means that you should use a toothbrush with soft bristles. Gums that are sore, bleeding and swollen from harsh treatment are susceptible to infections.
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diy for swollen gums

DIY Home Remedies for Swollen Gums

Swollen gums can be caused by a variety of conditions including infections, nutritional deficiencies, and hormonal fluctuations (such as during pregnancy). Because swollen gums can also be an indication of gum disease, it is best to contact your dentist and schedule an appointment to determine the cause of your swollen gums. If you experience pain while waiting to see your dentist, try these home remedies to ease the pain and discomfort of swollen gums.

Salt Water

Because salt acts as a natural disinfectant, the use of salt water is a tried-and-true method for soothing irritated gums. The salt reduces the bacteria in the mouth, which helps reduce the inflammation.

How to: Create a salt water rinse by dissolving one teaspoon of table salt into a cup of lukewarm water. Sip the salt water solution and swish it around your mouth for 15-20 seconds. Spit, and repeat the process until you have used all of the solution. Try using a salt water rinse twice per day.

Oil Pulling

Oil pulling, another rinse-and-spit method to soothe inflamed gums, is an ancient Ayurvedic remedy that has gained strong popularity due to the increasing popularity of coconut oil. Oil pulling not only heals gums, but this detoxifying practice also removes bacteria and prevents plaque build up.

How to: Swish up to a tablespoon of coconut oil in your mouth for at least 20 minutes. This practice is best done first thing in the morning, on an empty stomach, and before brushing teeth. Thoroughly spit the oil out and rinse with water before brushing your teeth.

Hot and Cold Compresses

Hot and cold compresses are frequently used to reduce pain and inflammation for muscle or sports injuries, but they are equally effective for oral first aid. Cold compresses are useful because they reduce the swelling of soft tissue such as gums. Alternatively, hot compresses soothe and help relieve pain.

How to: Alternate hot and cold compresses until pain and swelling subside. For hot compresses, something as simple as a warm, wet washcloth held against your face will work. For cold compresses, an ice pack wrapped in a tea towel is quite effective. Alternatively, ice pack head wraps are convenient and efficient.

Baking Soda

Baking soda, a common ingredient in mouthwashes, toothpaste, and whitening products, is also an effective ingredient to combat swollen gums. Like salt, baking soda also cleans the mouth and aids in the reduction of oral bacteria and eliminates acidic toxins.

How to: Create a thick paste of baking soda and water. Using a clean finger or a toothbrush, apply the paste to your gums.

Black Tea

Black tea is renowned for its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. Thanks to the tannins in black tea, black tea can be useful in treating swollen gums.

How to: Steep a high-quality black tea bag in boiling water for 2-3 minutes. Once the tea bag has cooled slightly, place tea bag on your gums for up to 15 minutes, and then rinse with salt water.

If your gum pain persists or these remedies do not reduce any swelling, speak with your dentist as soon as possible to rule out any infections or severe diseases.

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receding gums checked by dentist

Notice Receding Gums? Call Your Dentist

Many issues can affect your oral health that you may not know about. Receding gums are one of the problems that people might not notice, or at least straight away. It occurs when the line of your gums becomes higher so that more of your teeth show. This allows for bacteria to grow between your gums and teeth, which can lead to damage. As well as exposing a vulnerable part of the tooth, it can also indicate further problems. Receding gums might be a sign of periodontal disease. However, it could also be a genetic occurrence. Many people notice their gums receding as they age.

Recognizing Receding Gums

If your gums start to recede, they do so slowly. This means that it can be hard to spot it happening until it is advanced. Some people might not even notice then, as they have gradually become used to the changes in their gums. Instead of relying on visual signs, it can be useful to watch out for other symptoms. For example, sensitive teeth are often the first indication that something might have changed. Some people can also feel that the line of their gums is different. These are symptoms that should prompt a call to your dentist for an appointment.

Causes of Receding Gums

Receding gums can be due to a few different things. Some people have a genetic predisposition linked to gum disease. Research shows that up to 30% of people might have a higher risk of gum disease, even if they take excellent care of their teeth. Gum disease is one of the primary causes of gums receding. It includes gingivitis and the more advanced periodontitis. It is important to treat gum disease as soon as possible so that it doesn’t progress and lead to tooth damage and even loss. Gum disease can result from poor oral hygiene. The buildup of plaque also leads to tartar, which can cause gum recession.

However, receding gums can also be caused by too much brushing. People who brush too aggressively are at risk of causing damage to the enamel on their teeth. Grinding your teeth can also be a factor. Sometimes gum recession is due to factors out of your control. For example, hormonal changes can make receding gums more likely.

Treatment for Receding Gums

If your gums are receding, an appointment with your dentist will ensure you get the correct treatment. If the case is mild, your dentist can clean your teeth. They use a method called scaling and root planing to give your teeth a deep clean and get rid of plaque and tartar. They also smooth the tooth at the root, so it’s harder for bacteria to cling on. Some people may be prescribed antibiotics too. Some more severe cases of gum recession might require surgery. This can include procedures such as pocket depth reduction, where the gum is folded back to clean the area and then replaced.

If you think your gums might be receding, call your dentist to make an appointment. They can help you address the problem and improve the health of your gums.

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Warning sign preventing dental plaque for oral health

3 Step Plan To Prevent Dental Plaque

Dental plaque is a sticky, colorless substance that is formed by food, saliva, and bacteria in our mouths. It’s what gives our teeth that fuzzy-like feeling. If plaque is not removed through regular cleaning, it can build up and harden, while also spreading further bacteria. This can also cause gum inflammation which can then lead to gum disease, cavities, and tooth decay. Furthermore, the plaque can also cause bad breath and yellowing of your teeth. The best way of defending yourself from the adverse effects of plaque is by preventing it from hardening. Follow this three-step plan to help keep harmful dental plaque at bay.

1. Practice Good Oral Health

One of the best things you can do to prevent plaque is to practice good oral healthy every day. You should be brushing your teeth thoroughly with a suitable toothbrush and toothpaste twice a day. Electric toothbrushes have been known to be particularly effective at removing all traces of plaque. Don’t forget to brush both the front and back of each tooth. This will get rid of the plaque and bacteria that is on the surface of your teeth and gums. Flossing can help you access the gaps in between your teeth, where food can get stuck, and plaque can develop. You should aim to do this a minimum of once per day. Rinsing with a recommended mouthwash twice a day can also remove plaque from hard to reach areas. As well as removing bacteria from your tongue and sides of your mouth.

2. Eating a Balanced Diet

If you eat lots of sugary, starchy food and drinks, you are increasing your chances of developing plaque buildup. So avoid cookies, sweets and soda as much as possible. Instead, introduce more fruit and vegetables into your diet. These are much kinder to teeth and can even help to neutralize plaque-forming acids. Cut down on your carbohydrates too as this is what plaque needs to form. You should be drinking eight glasses of water per day to keep your teeth and the rest of your body in top condition.

3. Visit Your Dentist Regularly

Seeing your dentist at least twice per year will help you stop dental plaque from hardening. They can professionally scale and polish your teeth, which will make it harder for plaque to harden and develop. If you do have some buildup, they can also remove this for you. Your dentist can use your check up to examine your teeth and gums more carefully. They can use their tools to see areas you might be unable to. This ensures your entire mouth is getting the care and attention it needs to stay healthy. They can also pinpoint whether you might have the early signs of gum disease, which needs to be treated sooner rather than later. Contact your dentist to schedule in your next appointment today.

The methods that make up this plan are the best ways of preventing dental plaque from developing. Plaque is something we all have, and if we keep it under control, it shouldn’t be a cause for concern. For more guidance and support, talk to your dentist.

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diabetes and tooth loss

Diabetes May Increase Risk of Tooth Loss

A diagnosis of diabetes increases a person’s risk of other health complications. Diabetes may result in damage to small and large blood vessels that increases the risk of suffering a stroke or heart attack. Diabetes can damage nerves, eyes, kidneys and feet. Current research also indicates that diabetes may have a link to tooth loss.

Duke University study

A study conducted from 1971-2012 by Duke University researchers found that tooth loss can be another health issue related to diabetes. The study of over 37,000 Americans showed that people with diabetes lose twice the number of teeth as non-diabetics. The National Health and Nutritional Examination Survey revealed that people with diabetes were 34% less likely than non-diabetics to have at least 21 of their natural teeth.

Additional factors affecting diabetic tooth loss

Tooth loss in the United States has been declining for 40 years, but diabetics are still more prone to losing teeth. Ethnicity also plays a role in tooth loss as African Americans with diabetes show a greater risk of tooth loss than Mexican or Caucasian Americans. The leading cause of adult tooth loss is gum disease and for those with diabetes, gum disease is a common complication. Approximately 10% of the population, or 29 million people, have a diagnosis of diabetes, and this represents a bewildering number of people at a higher risk of developing gum disease.

Importance of diagnosis and care

Adding to the increased risk of tooth loss is the fact that approximately 8 million people with diabetes haven’t been diagnosed with the disease. Without knowing they have diabetes, patients don’t know that they need to be more involved with their oral health than those who don’t have diabetes. When people receive the proper diagnosis of diabetes, they can then take steps to protect their overall and oral health and avoid tooth loss. Everyone benefits from good oral hygiene, but it’s especially important that diabetics take a proactive commitment to their oral health. Regular dental checkups and daily brushing and flossing are some of the best ways to prevent tooth loss.

At Creative Dental, we’re committed to helping all of our patients maintain and protect their healthy smile. If you have diabetes, we can help you avoid tooth loss with regular, thorough periodontal exams and advice on improving oral health habits at home as needed.

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Gums and Oral Health

What Your Gums Reveal about Oral Health

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When you practice good oral hygiene daily, you know immediately if something feels or looks off. This is beneficial because it means you can contact our offices quickly address, treat, and reverse the problem before it escalates. One of the biggest indicators of oral health issues is the appearance of your gums and when you know what to look for, it helps you and your dentist find the best solution.


Swelling, puffiness, and redness of the gums are one of the most common warning signs of a problem. Irritated gums can indicate early gingivitis, a bacterial or viral infection or even a change in hormones. Gums do get swollen and puffy if you haven’t flossed in a while, but when such signs happen often, it’s time to contact your dentist for help.

Gum recession

When gums recede, it exposes additional tooth surface and even the root if left untreated. Causes of gum recession include gum disease, aging, teeth grinding or clenching, hormonal changes, and/or brushing too hard. A receding gum line requires prompt attention to prevent damage to teeth surfaces and roots and to address the underlying cause of the condition.

Bleeding gums

It’s never a good thing when your gums bleed as this can indicate gum disease, brushing too hard, or another underlying condition. Gums will often bleed when you first start flossing after a break, but that usually stops within a week. Another cause of bleeding gums is being on medications such as blood thinners and it’s crucial that you discuss all your medications with your dentist to decide on a proper course of action. Bleeding gums can be worrisome, but your dental professional will work with you to find the best treatment and solution for you.

The important thing to remember about any gum issues is that proper treatment starts with prevention and early detection. If your gum health indicates gum disease, our experienced staff is on hand to help you restore your beautiful smile and maintain your oral health.

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