Persistent Dry Mouth?

The The Gentle Art of Dentistry Guide To Dry Mouth

Dry mouth is a condition in which your salivary glands don’t produce enough saliva, leaving you with a persistent dry feeling in your mouth. If you experience this, be sure to tell us at The Gentle Art of Dentistry in Houston.

The medical term for dry mouth is xerostomia, which is pronounced zero-STOE-me-uh. It’s a known side effect of certain medications, and is also common in people who are undergoing radiation treatment for cancer. It’s also caused by a condition of the salivary glands themselves, but that is less common.

Causes

There are hundreds of medications that list dry mouth as a side effect. These include prescription drugs, and over-the-counter medicine. Antihistamines, decongestants, and pain medications may cause it, as well as many other drugs.

Dry mouth is also common in older people. Older people are often taking more medication than they did when younger. The body isn’t always as efficient in processing these medications as it once was.

Tobacco and alcohol use can also bring on symptoms of dry mouth, as well as so-called recreational drugs.

Chemotherapy may have an impact on the salivary glands, and their ability to produce saliva. It might return to normal once the treatment is finished.

Complications

In addition to discomort, dry mouth can lead to increased plaque on the teeth. This can, in turn, lead to tooth decay and gum disease. Yeast infections and sores around the mouth can also occur.

People with dry mouth may also have poor nutrition, because chewing and swallowing are more difficult.

The treatment for dry mouth depends on what’s causing it. If you have persistent dry mouth but don’t know why, please let us know at The Gentle Art of Dentistry in Houston. Our services include complete general dentistry. Patients from East Spring, West Cypress, and Klein also come to us for dental implants, and much more. Call us to set up an appointment today!

Contact The Gentle Art of Dentistry:

281-469-8029

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

102 Vintage Park Blvd, Suite D
Houston, Texas
77070

 

ArticleID 3623

Think You Know How To Brush? Think Again.

Houston tooth brushing tips

You’ve been doing it since you were five. You switch to autopilot morning and night and get it done. But The Gentle Art of Dentistry in Houston has a question: are you doing it right?

We ask this in all seriousness. There is always room for improvement, even in something as basic as brushing your teeth.

Essential Dental Health

Brushing, after all, is an important part of any daily dental health routine. We recommend brushing your teeth twice a day, and with a soft-bristled toothbrush. We strongly recommend flossing, too. Before or after you brush? The jury remains out on that one. We think before is better, but the most important thing is that you do it.

Be sure to get all over your teeth: the front and the sides, inside and out, and the tops. When you do the sides, be sure you brush along the gumline. Use a gentle touch, and hold the brush at a 45-degree angle.

As you do the front and side surfaces, move the brush in gentle, circular strokes.

Toothpaste

Use a pea-sized blob of fluoridated toothpaste – or more than pea-sized, if you’re so inclined. Too much toothpaste is no big deal, but be sure to use enough.

Be sure the head of the toothbrush isn’t too big, especially if you have a smaller mouth. It needs to fit easily between your cheeks and gums. The handle is less important. Make sure it feels comfortable in your hand. Replace your toothbrush every three months, if not more often.

Tooth Massage

Plaque is soft and loose, so you don’t have to scrub very hard to remove it. Think of it not so much as brushing, but massaging your teeth and gums. With that in mind you should you be able to keep a light touch.

Finally, brush for at least two minutes. If you’re running late, and are tempted to cut it short, resist. If it helps, use a stopwatch. You’ve probably got one on your smart phone.

At The Gentle Art of Dentistry in Houston we want the best possible dental health for all of our patients. People come from East Spring, West Cypress, and Klein for complete general and cosmetic dentistry services. Schedule your next checkup with us today!

Contact The Gentle Art of Dentistry:

281-469-8029

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

102 Vintage Park Blvd, Suite D
Houston, Texas
77070

 

ArticleID 7193

Is Grandpa Smiling?

elderly oral health Houston

How are Americans doing when it comes to the dental health of those who are sixty-five and over? Well, at The Gentle Art of Dentistry in Houston ave some good news and bad news.

The Good News:

  • Tooth decay rates in older Americans has decreased in the past thirty years.

The Bad News:

  • 25% of people over sixty-five have no remaining teeth
  • Nearly 20% have untreated cavities
  • 10% of adults 65 and over have moderate to severe periodontal disease.
  • There is evidence to suggest that advanced gum disease is linked to diabetes, heart disease, stroke and respiratory disease
  • Most older Americans don’t have dental insurance

Clearly, there is room for improvement. What elements will improve the oral health of older Americans? The National Institutes of Health cite three things:

  • Improved oral health education for the elderly
  • Seniors practicing effective daily oral hygiene
  • Increased access to dental care

At The Gentle Art of Dentistry in Houston, we are committed to providing all of our patients with comprehensive oral health education and care. People from East Spring, West Cypress, and Klein come to us for our full range of xxx. Please call our office to schedule an appointment today!

Contact The Gentle Art of Dentistry:

281-469-8029

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

102 Vintage Park Blvd, Suite D
Houston, Texas
77070

 

ArticleID 7123

Smokeless Is Not Harmless For Houston Tobacco Chewers

dental implants Houston

Cigarette sales have decreased in the past decade, and at The Gentle Art of Dentistry in Houston we won’t kid you: we’re happy about that. But some people have switched to smokeless products, on the assumption that smokeless tobacco is harmless.

This is absolutely not true. No matter its form, tobacco is dangerous stuff.

We encounter the consequences of smokeless tobacco use because many occur in the mouth. Oral cancer, mouth lesions, gum disease and tooth decay are the most common dental problems caused by smokeless tobacco.

Keeping a pinch between your cheek and gum all day is a bad idea, period. Tobacco erodes the teeth and also causes the gums to pull away from teeth.

Smokeless tobacco increases the risk for several types of life-threatening cancers including those of the mouth, gums, lips, tongue, and throat. Oral cancers can be as deadly as lung cancer and usually require surgery.

These are the main dental risks of smokeless tobacco. In addition, there are two other biggies: addiction and heart disease, though those are topics for another day.

If you have any concerns about the state of your oral health, be sure to talk to us about it at The Gentle Art of Dentistry in Houston. Patients from East Spring, West Cypress, and Klein come to our office for general and cosmetic dentistry. Call to schedule an appointment today!

Contact The Gentle Art of Dentistry:

281-469-8029

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

102 Vintage Park Blvd, Suite D
Houston, Texas
77070

 

ArticleID 3090

5 Ways To Prevent A Cracked Tooth

cost of dental crowns North TomballCracked teeth can be painful, unattractive, and pricey to repair. In this post from The Gentle Art of Dentistry in Houston, we offer tips to keep your teeth whole and strong.

Don’t chew on hard things. Steer clear of ice, hard candies, hard nuts, and even popcorn (the kernels can do damage). Also be wary of pitted fruits — that peach may be soft, but if you bite hard into the pit you could damage a tooth.

  • Always wear a mouthguard when playing sports. If you enjoy pick-up basketball games, indoor soccer leagues, rec center flag football, and many other activities, you should be using a well-fitting mouth protector.
  • Never use your teeth as a tool. Take a minute to find a pair of scissors before you tear open a package of lunch meat instead of your teeth. Use a nutcracker for nuts. A quality dental crown can cost hundreds of dollars.
  • Don’t grind your teeth. If you know or suspect that you are a tooth grinder, ask us about a nighttime mouth guard. People often do it in their sleep and aren’t aware of it. Frequent headaches or jaw pain can be a symptom of teeth grinding.
  • See us for regular check-ups. We can alert you to conditions that might predispose you to cracked teeth, such as having an uneven chewing surface or brittle teeth. We may also discover tiny cracks you aren’t aware of. Take care of these cracks before the whole tooth is in danger.

If you already have a cracked tooth, please let us know at The Gentle Art of Dentistry in Houston. People from East Spring, West Cypress, and Klein trust us with their smiles! We offer general and restorative dentistry. Call for an appointment today!

Contact The Gentle Art of Dentistry:

281-469-8029

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

102 Vintage Park Blvd, Suite D
Houston, Texas
77070

 

ArticleID 7771

Oral Cancer: Early Diagnosis Makes A Big Difference

oral cancer screening Houston

Cancer remains one of the scariest diagnoses anyone can get. Oral cancer is especially frightening, because it generally has a higher mortality rate than other cancers. Please keep reading this post from The Gentle Art of Dentistry in Houston, because we actually have some encouraging things to tell you.

The reason that the death rate for oral cancer tends to be higher than in other types is not because of the disease itself, or that it’s hard to diagnose. The reason is that it is often discovered late in its development. The oral cancer screenings we provide might just save your life, or the life of someone you love.

The symptoms for oral cancer don’t always produce any pain or other obvious symptoms. That’s why it tends to be discovered in later stages. The goal of screenings is to detect any precancerous lesions that could develop into cancer.

When oral cancer is found in its early stages, of course, the chances for successful treatment are at their highest.

If you have any concerns about the state of your oral health, be sure to talk to us about it at The Gentle Art of Dentistry in Houston. Patients from East Spring, West Cypress, and Klein come to our office for general and cosmetic dentistry. Call to schedule an appointment today!

Contact The Gentle Art of Dentistry:

281-469-8029

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

102 Vintage Park Blvd, Suite D
Houston, Texas
77070

 

ArticleID 7428

5 Tips For Treating Mouth Sores

Prevent Mouth Sores East Spring

When people get mouth sores, one of the things they can do while waiting for it to heal is evaluate what they’re eating and make some changes. Here are some tips from The Gentle Art of Dentistry in Houston that can help minimize the discomfort of eating and help to increase the speed of healing.

  1. Eat soft or pureed foods. Don’t worry, you won’t have to eat baby food—plenty of adult dishes fit the bill. Yogurt, mashed potatoes, smoothies are good choices.
  2. Keep your meals bland for a while. It’s humdrum, but watch out for overly spicy, tart, salty or acidic foods while you have a mouth sore.
  3. Also, keep it cool. Only eat meals served at room temperature or chilled.
  4. Use a straw so that whatever you are drinking can avoid the mouth sore altogether.
  5. Try to moisten dry foods. You can add sauces, dressings, and gravies to your meals.

At The Gentle Art of Dentistry in Houston, our specialty is dental health. We offer complete general dentistry services. People from East Spring, West Cypress, and Klein also come to our practice for cosmetic dentistry. Call to schedule an appointment today!

Contact The Gentle Art of Dentistry:

281-469-8029

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

102 Vintage Park Blvd, Suite D
Houston, Texas
77070

 

ArticleID 4628

You May Have Gingivitis

Affordable Houston Dentistry

This post from The Gentle Art of Dentistry i Houston is about gingivitis, which is early-stage gum disease.

Gum disease is usually the result of poor brushing and flossing habits. When you don’t brush and floss on a regular basis there is a build-up of plaque, which hardens into a substance called tartar. That’s why we recommend brushing and flossing twice a day. It’s the best way to prevent plaque from building up.

Advanced gum disease develops when gingivitis is not treated. Toxins build up in the plaque on your teeth and invade gum tissue. Not only that, it gets into the bone and ligaments that support the teeth. The teeth can actually become loose.

The good news is that gum disease is treatable.

At The Gentle Art of Dentistry in Houston we provide gum disease treatment, and have treated patients from throughout East Spring, West Cypress, and Klein. We offer comprehensive general dentistry services. Call for an appointment with us today!

Contact The Gentle Art of Dentistry:

281-469-8029

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

102 Vintage Park Blvd, Suite D
Houston, Texas
77070

 

ArticleID 1501

Help Me, I’m Afraid Of The Dentist!

North Tomball Sleep Dentistry

If you fear going to the dentist, you are far from alone. You may be among the millions of Americans coping with what we call dental anxiety, or even phobia. At The Gentle Art of Dentistry in Houston we don’t want you or anyone else putting their dental health at risk by avoiding regular checkups and cleanings. Sedation dentistry may be the answer you’ve been looking for.

Sedation dentistry means using one of several options to put you in a state of relaxation so you can get the care you deserve. We offer three types:

  • Nitrous oxide. This is the first-level option. Better known as laughing gas, nitrous oxide works quickly and wears off quickly. It is very effective. It may or may not make you laugh, but should relax you enough for your appointment.
  • Oral conscious sedation. You take a prescribed sedative an hour or so before your appointment. It will not make you sleep, but it will make you drowsy, and you will not be very aware of your surroundings.
  • IV sedation. As the name suggests, this is administered intravenously. It’s the strongest sedation we have. You may think you’re completely unconscious, but you’ll be awake, and even able to answer questions, the entire time. You probably won’t remember much of the procedure afterwards.

It takes a while for oral conscious sedation and IV sedation to wear off. You will be required to have a ride to and from our office for both of these.

Sedation dentistry from The Gentle Art of Dentistry in Houston helps anxious patients maintain good dental health. We’ve treated patients from East Spring, West Cypress, and Klein, who also come to our practice for complete general dentistry, and much more. Call our office to schedule an appointment today!

Contact The Gentle Art of Dentistry:

281-469-8029

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

102 Vintage Park Blvd, Suite D
Houston, Texas
77070

 

ArticleID 2603

How Long Should You Brush?

West Cypress Cosmetic Dentistry

At The Gentle Art of Dentistry in Houston we recommend brushing your teeth for at least two minutes, every time you brush. Most people think they brush that long but would probably be surprised if they actually set a timer. Many of us only brush for about a minute, if that.

Essential Dental Health

Brushing your teeth is an important part of any dental health routine. We recommend brushing your teeth twice a day, and with a soft-bristled toothbrush. We strongly recommend flossing, too. Before or after you brush? The jury remains out on that one. We think before is better, but the most important thing is that you do it.

Be sure to get all over your teeth: the front and the sides, inside and out, and the tops. When you do the sides, be sure you brush along the gumline. Use a gentle touch, and hold the brush at a 45-degree angle.

As you do the front and side surfaces, move the brush in gentle, circular strokes.

Toothbrush

Use a pea-sized blob of fluoridated toothpaste. Be sure the head of the toothbrush isn’t too big, especially if you have a smaller mouth. It needs to fit easily between your cheeks and gums. The handle is less important. Make sure it feels comfortable in your hand. Replace your toothbrush every three months, if not more often.

Tooth Massage

Plaque is soft and loose, so you don’t have to brush very hard to remove it. Think of it not so much as brushing, but massaging your teeth.

And remember, brush for at least two minutes! If you’re running late, and are tempted to cut it short, resist. If it helps, use a stopwatch.

At The Gentle Art of Dentistry in Houston we want the best possible dental health for all of our patients. People from East Spring, West Cypress, and Klein come to our practice for general and restorative dentistry, and much more. Schedule your next checkup with us today!

Contact The Gentle Art of Dentistry:

281-469-8029

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

102 Vintage Park Blvd, Suite D
Houston, Texas
77070

 

ArticleID 2285