5 Reasons it’s Time for a Check Up

There are life events and symptoms that may not seem to be related to the mouth that can warrant a visit to the dentist. Five of these reasons are listed below.

5 Reasons it is Time for a Check Up

  1. You Quit Smoking

Since you quit smoking, the blood flow to your gums increases, therefore, if you have gum disease, you may notice that your gums appear redder than usual. They may also bleed easily as you brush your teeth. While these changes are expected, now is a good time to make an appointment for a dental cleaning and exam.

A thorough cleaning can help brighten your teeth. If you do have gum disease, this cleaning can also help decrease the swelling in the gingival tissue (i.e., gum tissue). By decreasing the inflammation, the body is able to attack the infection much quicker. Furthermore, now that you are a nonsmoker, your body will heal faster.

  1. Recently Diagnosed with Diabetes

Pre-Diabetes and type 2 diabetes affect approximately 100 million Americans. Besides negatively affecting various areas throughout the body, diabetes also increases the risk of developing periodontitis, which is a severe form of gum disease.

Periodontitis causes the gingival tissue to pull away from the teeth. Since the gingival tissue helps keep the teeth in place, the likelihood of the teeth shifting and tooth loss increases. Sometimes this issue can be addressed with a scaling and root planing procedure, however, there are times when gum surgery is the only option for addressing a receding gumline.

  1. Frequent Morning Headaches

If you frequently wake up with a headache that usually resolves itself within 30 minutes, you may have a condition called bruxism. With this condition, an individual subconsciously grinds his or her teeth during sleep. This grinding may damage your teeth, however, if you let Dr. Kenneth Schweizer know about this problem, a custom-designed mouthguard can be created for you to wear while you sleep.

  1. Diagnosed with GERD

One in five Americans have a condition known by its acronym GERD, which stands for gastroesophageal reflux disease. This condition is also frequently referred to as acid reflux. The symptoms of GERD result when the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) muscle that is located between the stomach and the esophagus weakens. This muscle ring is responsible for keeping the stomach acid where it belongs. Once the acid exits the stomach and enters the esophagus, its lining becomes irritated, which causes the individual to experience a burning sensation. This sensation is frequently referred to as heartburn.

If the stomach acid continues up the esophagus and enters the mouth, the teeth are now at risk because this acid is strong enough to dissolve tooth enamel, thus, jeopardizing the health of the teeth. If you have recently been diagnosed with GERD, consider scheduling an exam with Dr. Kenneth Schweizer.

  1. You are Pregnant

The ADA recommends that pregnant women have three dental cleanings during their pregnancy. However, it is usually best to wait until the mother is near the end of her second trimester to perform any dental work that she needs.

If you are pregnant or have any of the conditions listed above, contact the office of Dr. Kenneth Schweizer to schedule an appointment. You can use the online form to request an appointment or just call the office at 941-926-4888. Dr. Schweizer’s office is located at 2920 Bee Ridge Road, Suite No. 201 in Sarasota, Florida.

4 Problems to Watch for in Your Smile as a Smoker

Even though smoking cigarettes is now known to be related to a litany of health issues and the number of smokers is declining, many people do still smoke tobacco. According to the latest data provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 14 percent, or 14 out of 100, adults in America are smokers. If you are a smoker yourself, you likely already know that this habit can have a detrimental effect on your smile. Here is a closer look at some of the problems you should watch for as a smoker.

1. Bad Breath

Smoking elevates the temperature in your mouth by several degrees. This heightened temperature gives bacteria the perfect environment for growth, which can lead to major problems with bad breath. Not to mention, smoking can reduce salivary production, which can also contribute to issues with bad breath.

2. Inflamed Gums

Smokers are at a much higher risk of problems with gum disease, which is essentially inflamed or even infected gums that can start to pull away from the teeth. If you notice that your gums look inflamed, feel tender to the touch, or seem to be shrinking away from your teeth, it is critical that you get the advice of a dentist. While gum disease can be treated, it is much harder to treat if you continue to smoke.

3. Interior Tooth Decay

Interior tooth decay refers to the decay that takes place on the backside of your teeth. When you smoke, you inhale the smoke and then release it back through your mouth, which means the heated smoke and chemicals push against the interior surfaces of your teeth. Many smokers start to develop decay in these areas at a faster rate than what they do anywhere else. Unfortunately, this form of decay can be a bit harder to spot until it is so severe that it causes pain or major changes in tooth structure.

4. Enamel Stains

Smoking is perhaps most widely recognized as a habit that will stain your teeth. The combination of the heated smoke, the nicotine, and the additives in the tobacco can leave stubborn, lingering stains on tooth enamel. These stains are not so easily removed with brushing and often settle into the enamel permanently for heavy smokers.

Work to Protect Your Smile with the Help of a Sarasota Dentist

Smokers are consistently encouraged to stop smoking. Quitting can be one of the most important things you can do for your overall health as well as the health of your teeth. If you are a smoker, you must be vigilant about your dental health. Reach out to us at the office of Dr. Keneth Schweizer DDS PA to schedule an appointment.

Tired of Bad Breath? Get Down to the Root of the Issue

It’s estimated that 1 out of 4 people will have bad breath on a relatively frequent basis. From popping mints to chewing gum and carrying your toothbrush everywhere you go, you can try a lot of things to deter halitosis (bad breath). The issue can be unfortunately harder to combat for some people. Here are a few things that could be to blame for the problem.

Everyday habits can contribute to bad breath.

Bad breath can sometimes have a lo to do with your everyday habits. A few things you may be doing that can heighten your chances of dealing with bad breath include:

  • Smoking or vaping
  • Not drinking enough water; drinking too many sugary drinks
  • Eating a lot of salty foods

Of course, certain pungent foods can contribute to bad breath as well. For example, garlic, onions, and certain herbs can linger on your breath long after you have eaten them. Smoking and vaping, not drinking enough water, and eating a lot of salt can lower the levels of natural moisture and saliva in your mouth, which can lead to excessive bacterial growth and foul odors.

Certain ailments and illnesses can be to blame.

Some people deal with bad breath no matter how much they brush or floss or what they eat or drink. Unfortunately, there are some illnesses that can be related to bad breath. Diabetes, for example, often contributes to bad breath because the condition changes the acidity levels of the saliva, which can cause undesirable odors. Even certain medications can be culprits behind halitosis. Amphetamines, antihistamines, and even antidepressants are all linked to dry mouth, which in turn can change the way your breath smells.

Discuss Bad Breath with Your Sarasota Dentist

Bad breath can have you dodging everyday conversation and being self-conscious during every encounter. While there are things you may be able to do to help deter issues with bad breath, this is definitely an issue to discuss with your dentist. In some situations, bad breath can be a sign of gum disease, decay, or other oral health problems. Reach out to us at our dental office in Sarasota, FL to schedule an appointment.

 

What is a Root Canal?

A root canal is a procedure that is performed to address a tooth root that has sustained damage. Damage to the root occurs when the part of the tooth (i.e., the pulp) that houses all the nerves, tissue and blood vessels becomes infected. This infection usually causes quite a bit of pain. A dentist uses a root canal to save the natural tooth and stop the pain.

What to Expect During a Root Canal

Prior to a root canal, X-rays are taken. After reviewing the X-rays, the dentist visually inspects the tooth and its surrounding area.

Procedure steps:

  1. Local anesthesia is administered via an injection. This medication numbs the area. For patient comfort, many dentists apply a topical anesthetic to the gum prior to administering the injection. After approximately 30 minutes, the local anesthesia takes full effect and the root canal procedure begins.
  2. A dental dam, which is designed to keep the damaged tooth dry and stable during the procedure is placed over the tooth receiving treatment.
  3. With a specialized drill, the dentist opens the top of the diseased tooth and removes the pulp.
  4. Once the pulp has been removed, the dentist uses miniature files to widen, clean, shape and prepare the area for filling.
  5. Using special solutions, the dentist flushes the area, washing away any excess pulp that remains.
  6. The dentist thoroughly dries the treatment area.
  7. A special antimicrobial medication is applied.
  8. When tooth decay is severe, patients may need to wait a couple days before having the area filled. This slight delay in filling gives the area some time to drain.
  9. If the tooth does not require additional drain time, the dentist can fill the area right away using gutta-percha. This rubbery material acts like a permanent bandage within the canal, preventing fluid and bacteria from entering the tooth via the roots.
  10. The tooth itself will either be crowned or filled. A crown is a prosthetic tooth that is placed directly over the natural tooth. The crown or filling reinforces and protects the portion of the natural tooth that remains.

If you are experiencing tooth pain or have extensive decay, a root canal can stop the pain and restore your natural tooth. There is a misconception that root canals are painful: Due to the use of local anesthesia, once the anesthesia takes effect, the root canal procedure itself is essentially pain free.

Schedule your appointment with Dr. Kenneth Schweizer today by calling (941) 926-4888.

Dr. Schweizer’s office is located at 2920 Bee Ridge Road, Suite 201, in Sarasota, Florida.

4 Signs Your Dentures Need to Be Adjusted or Redone

Dentures are the top choice for individuals who have lost all their teeth, and these dental appliances can last a really long time with the proper care. However, there can be situations when dentures need to be adjusted or remade because they are no longer a good fit or have started to break down.

1. Your dentures shift when you speak.

Well-fitting dentures should not shift around in your mouth when you talk. Dentures that need to be adjusted or remade will often shift when you have to open your mouth wider to say certain words.

2. You have to use denture adhesive on your upper and lower denture and reapply often.

Using a dab of denture adhesive on your dentures for a firmer placement is perfectly normal, especially on your lower arch. Nevertheless, if you have to use a lot of adhesives and have to reapply it several times throughout the day, it may mean that your dentures do not fit as well as they should.

3. You have problems chewing crunchy foods.

Dentures provide you with more chewing power, but there can still be some foods that are a bit harder to chew. But there is a big difference between dentures that fit well and those that don’t. When dentures do not fit properly, you can have an issue chewing pretty much anything crunchy, even if it is just a potato chip or a crunchy veggie.

4. You often fear your dentures slipping out of your mouth.

Fear of your dentures slipping out of your mouth can hold you back from speaking or smiling when you really want to. Well-made dentures that conform to the shape of your mouth will not slip out of your mouth unexpectedly. The denture will conform to the gums and soft tissue and offer just enough suction to hold them in place.

Talk to Us AboutDenture Issues in

When you rely on dentures to help you speak clearly, chew your foods, and smile, you want them to fit you well without shifting and moving. If you have issues with your old dentures or you need new dentures, reach out to us at the office of Dr. Keneth Schweizer DDS PA to schedule an appointment.

 

Dental Care and Diabetes: Important Things to Know as a Diabetic

Ongoing dental care is even more important than usual when you have been diagnosed with diabetes. You may be more at risk of certain oral health problems and issues that can affect your smile. Controlling your blood sugar levels will help protect your smile, which is a good reason to make sure you are following the guidelines of your doctor, eating a well-balanced diet, and taking prescribed medications. However, there are a few things every person with diabetes should know about their dental health.

1. You may be more prone to periodontal disease as a diabetic.

Diabetes can change how blood circulates throughout your body, including into your gums. This change can make you more at risk of developing gum disease than the average patient.

2. You may need more frequent checkups at the dentist to monitor your oral health.

Even though some patients can get by with having only one dental checkup annually, as a diabetic, it is better if you seek a check every six months if possible. Since you are more prone to dental health issues, these more frequent visits will help to keep a closer watch on small problems so they can be handled quickly.

3. Halitosis can be an issue for diabetics.

One of the symptoms of diabetes or unstable blood sugar levels is dry mouth. Unfortunately, having a mouth that is drier than usual can also mean that you are more prone to experiencing bad breath. This occurs because there is not as much saliva to keep bacteria and food particles washed away from your teeth.

4. People with diabetes can be more likely to lose their teeth.

Bone infections, soft tissue breakdown, and lack of saliva are all issues that can contribute to tooth loss. As a diabetic, you are more at risk of all three, so you can have a higher risk of losing your natural teeth.

Lets Talk About Diabetes and Your Oral Health in Sarasota, FL

Overall, you need the help of a good dentist when you have diabetes because your smile could be even more at risk than usual. If you would like to schedule an appointment, reach out to us at the office of Dr. Keneth Schweizer DDS PA in Sarasota, FL so we can get a conversation started about taking care of your teeth.

 

Are Your Teeth Sensitive to Heat or Cold? Here’s Why That Happens

If you’re like most people, you truly enjoy a nice cold dish of ice cream or a freshly scooped ice cream cone no matter what time of year it is. However, few things are more unpleasant than taking a big bite of your favorite ice cream and experiencing sudden tooth pain as a result. Or perhaps you love starting your day with a just-brewed cup of hot coffee but have lately been noticing that your teeth have become increasingly sensitive to hot temperatures. Millions of Americans experience this condition, and the good news is that it’s almost always treatable. Here’s why tooth sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures happens and what you can do about it:

Tooth enamel wears down over time, and because it provides a protective cover for the interior of the teeth, tooth sensitivity can occur.

Cracks in the Surface of the Tooth Enamel

One of the most common reasons for tooth sensitivity is small cracks in the enamel that you may not have even noticed. These cracks allow hot and cold sensations to seep through the enamel to the underlying nerves.

Worn Enamel

Worn enamel is another possible culprit when tooth sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures is a part of the picture. This is a normal part of aging and is usually mild.

What You Can Do for Tooth Sensitivity

Many people find they are able to get relief from minor tooth sensitivity by using an enamel-building toothpaste. Be sure to choose one that’s recommended by the American Dental Association, and ask your dentist to recommend one if you’re unsure of which one to use. You can also switch to a brand of toothpaste designed for use on sensitive teeth as well as use a toothbrush with soft bristles.

Should You See a Dentist

Tooth sensitivity that persists or that turns into pain means you’re due for a visit to your dentist. This could be an indication that the inner pulp has somehow become infected. When this happens, the usual remedy is a root canal. Fortunately, advances in modern dentistry mean that today’s root canal procedures are less uncomfortable than their counterparts of the past.

Please don’t hesitate to contact us at your convenience for more information on dental health issues or to set up an appointment.

 

Implant Aftercare — Everything You Need to Know

Dental implants provide an excellent alternative to conventional dentures. However, patients sometimes make the mistake of thinking that because prosthetic teeth themselves don’t suffer from tooth decay like their natural counterparts, it’s safe to dial back on oral hygiene practices. It’s important for those who have implants installed to understand that best oral hygiene practices play a significant role in determining how long implants will last and even their overall success rate. Here’s what you need to know about taking care of your implants:

Use a Non-Abrasive Toothpaste

Because materials used to manufacture prosthetic teeth aren’t quite as hard as natural tooth enamel, so you’ll want to use a non-abrasive toothpaste that’s formulated for use on prosthetic teeth to keep them from getting scratched. You can also purchase unwaxed dental floss for use on implants. Your dentist may also recommend that you use an oral irrigation system.

Use a Soft-Bristled Brush

Using a soft-bristled brush serves the same purpose as brushing with a low-abrasive toothpaste — it will help keep your prosthetic teeth from becoming unnecessarily scratched. To thoroughly clean hard-to-reach places, use a nylon-coated interdental brush.

Use an Antibacterial Rinse After Brushing and Flossing

Plaque buildup is the number one culprit when it comes to causing gum disease, and it occurs just as easily on prosthetic teeth as it does on natural ones, which is why it’s essential to continue practicing impeccable oral hygiene. The leading cause of gum disease is bacterial buildup in the mouth, so keep this to a minimum by using an antibacterial mouthwash after you finish brushing and flossing.

Avoid Hard Foods

Biting down on hard foods can damage prosthetic teeth, so avoid eating items such as hard candies and nuts. You should also avoid chewing on pencils and other items. These are often nervous habits that people engage in without even thinking about, so you may need to make a conscious effort not to do this.

See Your Dentist Every Six Months

Preventive dentistry is an essential component of making sure your implants last as long as possible — and with the proper care, implants can easily last the rest of your natural life.

Please don’t hesitate to reach out to us at your convenience to schedule an appointment or for more information on keeping your smile healthy and beautiful.

Dental Care During Pregnancy | Big Questions Answered

Pregnancy affects your entire body, including your teeth. However, with so much excitement going on and preparation taking place, it is easy to allow your dental care to fall by the wayside. You may come across a few questions about your dental care while you are expecting. Find out what you need to know about taking care of your teeth during pregnancy.

Is it normal for your gums to bleed during pregnancy?

Hormonal changes during pregnancy can bring about a lot of undesirable changes, and one of those changes can be gums that are more tender and may bleed. If you see a little more pink on your toothbrush than usual when you are expecting, this is not something that should be alarming. However, if you are having a lot of pain and tenderness along with the extra blood, it is best to discuss your symptoms with your dentist.

Is routine dental treatment safe while you are pregnant?

Routine dental care is perfectly safe during pregnancy. According to AmericanPregnancy.org, the main concerns are doing x-rays and taking certain medications. For example, if you have to have a tooth extracted, the use of lidocaine may be necessary, which may cross the placenta and enter the baby’s bloodstream. While routine care like cleanings is fine, it is best to discuss the risks of any other treatments with your dentist and possibly create a plan of care for after the baby is born.

Can poor oral health affect your growing baby?

Poor oral health can possibly affect your growing baby. For example, if you have a severely decayed tooth, you may be at risk of developing an infection, which would put both you and your baby at risk. Emergency treatment is often necessary to prevent any of your oral health issues from being a concern for your child.

Reach Out to Us for Dental health care During Pregnancy

Your oral health is an important part of a healthy pregnancy, and there is no reason to neglect your smile while anticipating a new bundle of joy. If you have questions about dental care during pregnancy, reach out to us at the office of Keneth Schweizer DDS PA in Sarasota, FL for advice.

Have Your Gums Started to Bleed? Here’s What You Need to Know About Gingivitis

Gingivitis is a common occurrence involving the accumulation of plaque on the teeth and gum line area. The most prevalent sign of gingivitis is red, swollen gums that may be tender to the touch as well as bleed during brushing and flossing. Many people tend to become alarmed when they first notice that their gums are bleeding, with good reason — left untreated, gingivitis can evolve into full-blown periodontal disease, which can lead to loss of teeth and create serious health issues. Here’s what you need to know about gingivitis:

There Are Two Types of Gingivitis

The most common type of gingivitis is the type mentioned in the previous paragraph that is caused by plaque buildup in the mouth. The other type involves small lesions on the gum line and often caused by allergies or genetics. Your dentist will be able to tell you which type you have in order to formulate an effective course of treatment.

Gingivitis is Often Reversible

When caught in the early stages, gingivitis is almost always reversible with the right type of oral hygiene routine. Brushing and flossing twice per day, every day is essential if you want to win the war on gingivitis. Using a toothpaste designed for those with emerging gingivitis is also recommended as well using an antibacterial mouthwash after brushing and flossing. Some patients have reported success with at-home oral irrigation systems.

If Not Treated, Gingivitis Can Turn Into Periodontal Disease

As mentioned earlier, gingivitis turns into periodontal disease in time if it’s not treated. Periodontal disease can result in the loss of teeth and can also adversely affect cardiovascular health if allowed to reach advanced stages.

Risk Factors For Developing Gingivitis

Poor oral hygiene is the biggest risk factor when it comes to the development of gingivitis. It also tends to affect older adults in greater numbers as well as those who smoke, use alcohol, and don’t get enough vitamin C in their diet. Research suggests that there may be genetic factors as well, and those with diabetes and certain forms of cancer may be more prone to developing gingivitis than others.

Please contact us to schedule an examination if you’ve noticed bleeding gums or other potential signs of gingivitis or other dental disorders.