Exchanging Spit and What Else?

Recently, I had a patient who presented with generalized gingivitis. Her husband was also recently diagnosed and treated for generalized chronic periodontitis. She asked the familiar question “How did I get gingivitis? I brush and floss every day.” These questions opened the door for an interesting discussion about her risk factors. She has two children under the age of 4 and she works full time as a nurse. Both of these contribute to her disrupted and inadequate sleep patterns. She is overw...
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Case Study: Class II Periodontitis

Background: The patient is a 54 year old female who presented with the chief complaint “My gums bleed when I brush, there are possible cavities and I don’t like the tooth crowding.” Her last dental visit was about 6 years ago. There is a family history of diabetes, cardiovascular disease, stroke and cancer. The home care consisted of manual tooth brushing 1-2 times per day with occasional antibacterial mouth rinse. During the clinical assessment, it was discovered that several amalgam restor...
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A Higher Standard of Care

For many years now, research has shown that there is a mouth body connection. In other words, what is happening in the mouth can impact what is happening with the body! In order for someone to have good health, they need to have good oral health. Unfortunately, periodontal disease is silent, as it does not hurt until it is severe. The minimal pain factor, as periodontal disease develops, may be why 80% of the United States population is suffering from periodontal disease. In the next paragra...
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Case Study: Pregnancy and Periodontal Pathogens

Background: Patient is a 31 year old female, who presented with the chief complaint "My gums are swollen and painful." The last dental visit with exam was about 6 months ago. The radiographic examination including bitewings revealed horizontal bone loss and heavy amounts of generalized subgingival calculus. The patient's gums were erythematous with probe depths between 5-9 mm. Patient was diagnosed with generalized severe chronic periodontal disease. The additional challenge was that the patie...
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Periodontist Turned Patient

  As a periodontist, I pride myself on healthy gums. I admit to only getting a prophylaxis when the schedule permitted. My home care most likely resembles what most dental professional do, brush twice daily with an electric toothbrush and flossing most days. In grad school, it was discovered I had a few 4mm periodontal pockets. However, my professors were not concerned and I was never diagnosed with periodontal disease. Now fast forward several years. At age 37, after surviving an...
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Dental Clearance Without the Guesswork

Have you ever been uncertain when providing dental clearance for crucial treatments, such as heart surgery or joint replacement? In my practice, we look at the clinical signs and symptoms for oral disease, but we additionally observe the patient’s oral health at the molecular level. Let me share a case with you that illustrates the importance of salivary testing and its profound impact on the credibility of clearing a patient for surgery. A long-standing patient presented to my office on...
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