Dentist 60619 | Oral Cancer Risk Factors

 Dentist in South Side Chicago

Dentist in South Side ChicagoDuring a comprehensive dental examination, our team will look for signs of oral cancer. Early detection is key with oral cancer. If caught early, most forms of oral cancer are treatable. Our dental team is trained and educated to identify oral cancer.

Everyone is susceptible to the disease, but some groups of people are at a higher risk level than others. Here are the top seven risk factors for oral cancer.

Age

Are you in your mid 40s? Your risk of developing oral cancer increases with age. A noticeable increase is evident in people in their 40s and older. According to the Cancer Treatment Centers of America, the majority of diagnosed cases occur around the age of 62, but the average age is declining. The recent increase in Human Papillomavirus (HPV) related cases is causing more people to be diagnosed for oral cancers between the ages of 52 and 56. As the average age for oral cancer cases decreases, it is vital that you receive regular oral cancer screenings at any age.

Gender

Men are twice as likely to develop oral cancer compared to women. Part of this difference may be related to regular intake of alcohol and tobacco. According to the American Cancer Society, the gender difference is decreasing since more women are drinking and using tobacco today than in previous generations. There has also been a trend in recent years of younger men being diagnosed with HPV-related oral cancer. Both men and women should schedule regular oral health examinations to detect oral cancer early.

Tobacco

Smoking or chewing tobacco can greatly increase your risk of developing oral cancer. Tobacco can lead to cancer of the mouth or throat. Additionally, oral tobacco products cause cancers associated with the cheeks, gums, and inner surface of the lips. Development of these cancers depend on the duration and frequency of tobacco use. Non-smokers are not immune to oral cancer, so be sure to schedule an appointment with our team for an examination.

Alcohol

Among those that are diagnosed with oral cancer, about 70% of people are characterized as heavy drinkers. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), heavy drinking is defined as having an average of two or more drinks per day for men, and one or more drinks per day for women. People who drink heavily can be more than twice as likely to develop oral cancers than people who do not drink. Oral cancer can still occur in people who have never had an alcoholic drink. Contact our team to schedule an examination.

Human Papillomavirus (HPV)

This sexually transmitted disease is associated with at least 10,000 cases of oral cancer diagnosed each year in the United States. People who have HPV-related oral cancers tend to be younger and are unlikely to smoke or drink. Typically, those diagnosed with HPV-related oral cancers are at a much lower risk of death or reoccurrence. We suggest a proactive approach by maintaining regular visits to our dental office.

Sunlight

People who work outside or with prolonged exposure to sunlight have a higher risk of developing lip cancer. It is vital to use UV protection when under the sun. Many lip balms offer UV protection. If you work outdoors frequently, schedule an additional examination with our team.

Diet

Poor nutrition can increase your risk for developing oral cancer. According to the American Dental Association, reports have shown that a link exists between diets low in fruits and vegetables and a higher risk for oral cancers. However, oral cancer can develop in healthy individuals. No matter your diet, schedule a visit with our team for a comprehensive oral examination.

Oral cancer does not discriminate. While these seven factors have been tied to an increased risk of oral cancer, that does not diminish the importance of regular oral examinations for everyone regardless of their age, gender, or other factors. Regular dental examinations make it possible for our team to detect oral cancer early. Contact our dentist to schedule a comprehensive oral examination.  

(773) 488-3738 – 820 E 87TH ST #201, CHICAGO, IL 60619

 

Dentist 60619 | 5 Teeth Sensitivity Myths

Chicago IL Dentist

Dentist in 60619Do you suffer from regular sensitivity? Teeth sensitivity is often misunderstood, but our dental team can help you find relief. We’re here to separate the fact from fiction in sensitivity.

MYTH: People’s teeth are supposed to hurt when they bite into cold or hot foods.

Feelings of sensitivity when eating hot or cold foods should not be a typical experience. If you suffer from hypersensitivity, it can actually be a sign that something is wrong. There are many causes for hypersensitivity including cavities, older dental fillings, worn tooth enamel, gum disease, and exposed tooth roots. Dentin hypersensitivity is a common issue. A visit to our dental office can help you find relief.

MYTH: Desensitizing toothpastes are not effective in reducing teeth sensitivity.

Desensitizing toothpastes include compounds like potassium nitrate or strontium chloride. These ingredients work by preventing pain signals being transmitted between the surface of your tooth and the inside nerves. It may take several applications of the toothpaste until you will feel a noticeable difference. Prescription strength toothpastes are also an option for more severe and prolonged feelings of sensitivity. Ask our dentist to recommend a toothpaste for your needs.

MYTH: You shouldn’t drink coffee or eat ice cream if you have sensitive teeth.

You don’t have to be limited from eating or drinking your favorite foods. It is important to check with our dentist to determine the root cause of your discomfort. Based on your cause, we may recommend a prescribed toothpaste or another treatment. You should always maintain proper oral care to prevent sensitivity.

MYTH: Sensitivity never results in tooth loss.

Sensitivity may in fact be a precursor to tooth loss. Gum recession, which exposes the roots of your teeth, can cause general sensitivity among several teeth at the same time. Prolonged and untreated gum recession can lead to tooth loss. Tooth decay can also cause sensitivity. When left untreated, it may lead to an infection in the gums or jaw and risk spreading to other areas in the head or neck. Early diagnosis and treatment can make a difference in keeping your smile healthy.

MYTH: Sensitivity does not have a cure.

Depending on the cause, there are many ways to treat teeth sensitivity. Proper oral hygiene is the best way to prevent any sensitive tooth pain. If you experience sensitivity, schedule a comprehensive dental examination today.

We look forward to seeing you. Contact our team to schedule your next visit.

820 East 87th Street Suite 201
Chicago, IL 60619

 

 

South Side Chicago Dentist | What You Should Know About Partial Dentures

Cosmetic Dentist in South Side Chicago, IL

South Side Chicago Dentist

Determining Which Type of Denture is Best for You  

Dentures can either be a replacement of all of one’s teeth known as complete dentures or a section of teeth, known as partial dentures. When arriving for your scheduled appointment here is what you can expect. X-rays to look for any issues that might affect fit. In some cases, the addition of crowns, may be needed to accommodate the new partials. Once fitted, your dentist will recommend keeping them in for one week to make any necessary adjustments. Next, how you should care for them, why it is important to note any misconceptions, and any future questions you might have will go down here in this handy guide. Always consult your dental professional should you have any questions or concerns.

Fitting of Partial Dentures

Having been fitted with your partials, you will be ready to schedule a follow up appointment you’re your dental professional to make any adjustments and address any concerns you are having during this first week period. There will be different types of products available to you the consumer for taking care of your new partials, and that it is important to know what to expect when wearing and caring for them. Some of the commonly held misconceptions are listed below and are summarized from the ADA’s recommendations.

Misconceptions and how to Care for Them Below, is a look at some differences, and what you can expect when caring for your new partials. The many different types of products available to you over the counter and caring for them will change. Below, we can see how and what will be done different.

  1. Never brush your dentures with a regular toothbrush. Always use an approved denture brush designed specifically for dentures themselves, otherwise you can damage them.
  2. Avoid any non-approved denture toothpaste not designed for dentures. They are far too abrasive and again you risk damaging them.
  3. Instead, using a mild household soap and water is perfectly acceptable and will not damage them.
  4. Your dentist will probably recommend a cleanser. Look for denture cleaners sold over the counter that are ADA acceptable and the label clearly indicates this.
  5. Finally, if at any time your dentures become damaged, either they have been chipped or are missing one or more teeth, consult your dentist immediately.

Whether you are deciding which type of dentures, either partial and full replacements, you should now have a basic understanding of what to expect with full or partial ones. Avoiding cleansers and brushes that will cause harm or damage and following the recommendation of your dental professional are crucial in making your new partials last a long time.

To schedule your next visit, please contact our dental office.

South Side Chicago Dentist | 12 Reasons to See Your Dentist

Cosmetic Dentist in South Side Chicago, IL

60619 dentistDon’t wait until you’re in pain to see your dentist! Most people make time to clean out the house, car, garage, or closets at least twice a year. Why not include your oral health on your “to do” list?

Schedule an Appointment Now!

Regular professional cleaning and examinations are essential to maintaining optimal oral health. These routine visits are your first line of defense against tooth decay, periodontal disease, oral cancers, and more. Early identification and treatment of any oral illness improves outcomes and allows for less-invasive treatment options. Don’t wait until it hurts!

Why Do We Avoid Going?

The HDI institute, in a study done with the American Dental Association, lists some of the main reasons we sometimes delay going to the dentist. Cost, low perceived need, time, and anxiety are the most common causes. However, if we allow these concerns to interfere with oral care, we may allow more serious issues to develop.

When Should We See the Dentist?

The ADA or American Dental Society recommends maintaining twice yearly visits for cleaning and examinations. In addition, they advise making an appointment for any of the following concerns:

  1. Pain in your mouth, teeth, or face
  2. Injury to your mouth, teeth, or face
  3. Conditions that can affect oral health, such as diabetes
  4. Pregnancy
  5. Jaw pain or stiffness
  6. Bleeding, swelling, or redness in your gums
  7. Recent dental treatment, such as fillings, crowns, implants, or root canal
  8. Pain or difficulty eating or drinking
  9. Chronic dry mouth
  10. Smoking or tobacco use
  11. Sores in your mouth that are not healing
  12. You have questions or concerns about your oral health or hygiene

Our team is here to help you achieve and maintain your best oral health.

To schedule your next visit, please contact our dental office.

South Side Chicago Dentist | Chewing Gum for Your Oral Health

Cosmetic Dentist in South Side Chicago, IL

60619 dentistSugary, sticky, and sweet candies can damage your teeth by increasing your risk of decay. Though gum can be considered a type of candy, chewing sugarless gum approved by the ADA can actually help protect teeth and prevent tooth decay. Here’s what you need to know about gum and your teeth.

How it Works

Chewing gum helps increase the production of saliva. Chewing sugarless gum for twenty minutes following meals can help prevent tooth decay because the saliva helps wash away food and other debris from the surface of your teeth. Increased salivary flow can also neutralize acids that bacteria produce inside your mouth. Over time, acid can break down tooth enamel, leading to decay. Saliva contains calcium and phosphate, which aid in strengthening tooth enamel.

Look for the ADA Seal

The ADA Seal assures you that the gum is sugarless and has met the ADA’s criteria for safety and effectiveness. ADA-labeled products are tested to ensure they provide the benefits guaranteed by the seal. Companies must verify all relevant data with the ADA to become certified. If you are unable to brush for a short period of time, chewing gum with the ADA seal is a great option to help clean your teeth after a meal or snack.

Can I Stop Brushing if I Chew Gum?

No. Chewing gum for twenty minutes after a meal helps but is not a replacement for brushing and flossing. You should brush at least twice each day, for two full minutes. Chewing gum also does not eliminate your need for regular dental examinations. Our dentist recommends scheduling two visits each year, with additional visits necessary for high-risk patients with oral health conditions.

Chewing sugarless gum has noticeable benefits for your oral health, such as increasing the production of saliva. While this can help prevent the build up of decay-causing bacteria, chewing gum should not be used as a substitute for brushing or flossing. Our dentist recommends that if you are chewing gum, be sure to choose an ADA approved brand of sugarless gum.

To schedule your next visit, please contact our dental office.

South Side Chicago Dentist | Dental Myths & Facts

Did you know that you know that you should replace your toothbrush after illness? Read more about dental myths, facts and oddities.

Contact us to schedule an appointment with our South Side Chicago dentist.

South Side Chicago dentist

South Side Chicago Dentist – Costs of Skipping a Regular Check-Up

Dentist in south side chicagoA busy lifestyle can certainly make time pass quickly. Before you know it, your smile will be due for another dental exam and cleaning. We recommend scheduling your next appointment prior to leaving our dental office in South Side Chicago to prevent missing an important dental cleaning. When routine dental exams and cleanings are skipped, it may become costly in various ways.

Preventive Measures
Routine dental exams prevent oral diseases (such as decay and periodontal disease) from forming. An exam allows our professional team to discover early signs of mineralized plaque (tartar), which can cause extreme damage to your teeth and gums. Other dental problems such as loose filling, dry mouth, and impacted wisdom teeth can also be detected and treated during your regular visit to prevent additional worsening dental problems.

Time Matters
The sooner dental problems are identified, the less costly and invasive the treatment will be. During your routine exam, our doctor will screen for early signs of gum disease, decay, and oral cancer.

When gum disease is in early stages, a non-surgical deep cleaning will provide treatment to mild to moderate conditions. However, severe cases of gum disease may require gum surgery. Cavities also benefit from early detection. Cavities can infect and damage the pulp of your tooth. A pulp infection requires root canal therapy treatment. If a cavity is left untreated for a longer period of time, the affected tooth may become severely damaged may require an extraction. Regular exams with our dentist in South Side Chicago, IL will prevent costly treatment such as extractions and root canals from being needed in the future.

Visit us more than twice a year to maintain a smile stronger and brighter smile. Contact the South Side Chicago dentist to schedule a routine dental exam today. We look forward to seeing you soon!

Dentist in Chatham Chicago IL – College Students Need Dentists, Too

The other day, a patient of mine came in for a regular check up — for the first time in two years. She is a college student who spends most of the year away at school. With everything going on at school, it can be easy to forget about scheduling visits to see the Dentist Chatham. We see this a lot with patients; they maintain regular check-ups from childhood all the way through high school, and then they go away to school and disappear for a few years. When they come back, though, they have to make up for lost time, and they face more complications than the patients who have been regularly visiting their Chatham Dentist.

 

When my patient stopped in for an appointment, she was showing the beginnings of gum disease. There was a lot of build-up on her teeth, and her gums were beginning to recede. Had more time passed, the periodontal disease could have advanced to a more severe stage. Although it was clear that she was trying to keep up with her oral health through regular brushing and flossing, the Dentist Chatham Chicago has the tools to target and clean the spots that are easily missed.

 

It is important to be proactive about making appointments to prevent gum disease and other complications such as tooth decay and teeth pain. If you stop in to see your Chatham Chicago Dentist over winter break and then over summer break, you will be able to maintain good oral health. If this timing does not work, you could also schedule appointments during a fall break and spring break. No matter what you decide, it is much more convenient to stop in twice a year for a cleaning than it would be to need to come home for restorative treatment during midterms.

 

To schedule your next appointment with your Dentist in Chatham Chicago IL, give our office a call.

 

 

 

Yetta McCullom     

Dentist in Chatham – Is Your Jaw Sore?

Temporomandibular disorders (TMD) and temporomandibular joint disorders (TMJ) are issues you experience with your jaw, as well as the joint and facial muscles surrounding your jaw. This can cause stress and discomfort in your daily life. Symptoms of TMD include tension and tenderness in your face or jaw, difficulty with opening your mouth wide, locking or clicking or your jaw, difficulty in chewing, a tired feeling in your face, and swelling on the side of your face.

Your dentist Chatham can examine your jaw in order to diagnose TMD. Your dentist will check for locking of the jaw while opening and closing your mouth. Additionally, your bite and facial muscle function will be examined, and your dentist will evaluate your jaw pain and tenderness. In some cases, x-rays will be taken to check your jaw, jaw joint, and teeth for irregularities.

It can be difficult to diagnose TMD and TMJ because the symptoms of these are similar to symptoms of other health issues such as toothache, arthritis, and sinus problems. However, you should schedule an appointment with your dentist in Chatham Chicago if you experience any of the symptoms of TMD and TMJ.

There are precautions your Chatham dentist recommends to avoid TMD and TMJ problems from arising. First, you can avoid hard foods and excessively chewing gum. Although gum can have many oral health benefits such as preventing cavities and tooth decay, it can tire your jaw and cause some soreness if you are not accustomed to regularly chewing gum.

Another way to prevent TMD problems is to develop and practice relaxation techniques to reduce tension in your face and jaw. Clenching, especially in your sleep, can cause tension in your jaw, so you can reduce soreness by learning to relax your jaw. For example, by placing the tip of your tongue at the roof of your mouth, your jaw will automatically relax, reducing some of the tension. If you struggle with clenching your jaw while you sleep, you may want to consider getting fitted for a mouthguard from your dentist in Chatham.

If you are feeling soreness or tenderness in your jaw, you should schedule an appointment with your dentist Chatham in order to receive a proper diagnosis and to explore your options. Your dentist can help you to maintain a beautiful, healthy mouth that is free of discomfort.

 dentist in chatham

Yetta McCullom
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Dentist Chatham Chicago – Pick Up A Pack (Of Chewing Gum)

If you are in the habit of chewing sugarless gum on a regular basis, you’ll be happy to know that this can have a positive effect on your oral health. It is a simple way to give your oral health a little boost. If you don’t typically chew gum, your dentist Chatham Chicago recommends picking up a pack.

Chewing gum increases the flow of saliva in your mouth. Your saliva washes away acids, sugars, and food debris in your mouth, preventing tooth decay and cavities. The flow of saliva can help to strengthen your tooth enamel, helping you to maintain strong, beautiful teeth. Your dentist in Chatham recommends chewing gum right after you eat for about 20 minutes to best fight off cavities caused by food consumption.

Chewing gum has aesthetic benefits, as well. It can ward off bad breath and brighten your smile. By washing away the food debris that may have remained in your mouth from your last meal, chewing gum rids your mouth of any lingering odors. Additionally, it prevents the acids and debris in your mouth from staining your teeth, leading to a healthier, whiter smile.

Not only does chewing gum protect your teeth, but it can also help your gums. Chewing gum reduces plaque build-up, which is a way to prevent gingivitis and periodontal disease. Although this is not a cure to gum disease, chewing gum is a helpful way to supplement your oral hygiene in between visits to your Chatham dentist.

In order to maximize the benefits of chewing gum, your dentist in Chatham Chicago recommends that you look for sugar-free gum, specifically gum that has been sweetened with xylitol. Xylitol prevents harmful bacteria from lingering in your mouth, reducing your risk for cavities. Additionally, xylitol can help to repair damage to enamel, strengthening your smile.

While there are many benefits to chewing gum, there are also complications that can arise if you chew excessively. Frequent gum chewing can lead to inflammation and soreness in your jaw, causing TMD and TMJ. Also, you are putting stress on your facial muscles when you chew, which may cause headaches.

Although chewing gum can be beneficial to your oral health, it is still very important to floss daily and brush twice a day. Chewing gum should serve as a complement, not a substitute. Additionally, you should regularly schedule visits with your dentist Chatham to ensure that you maintain the best possible oral health.

 dentist in chatham

Yetta McCullom
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