Learn More About How Mouth Cancer Can Affect Your Dental Health
Are your dental habits leading you down the path towards mouth cancer? Discover the signs, symptoms, and risks associated with oral disease.
Did you know that your dentist can screen for cancer? Cancer of the mouth is one of the most common forms of the disease, and adults over 20 should get tested regularly! The Oral Cancer Foundation reported approximately 49,750 cases of mouth cancer in the United States last year. Oral cancer can wreak havoc on both your dental and general health?especially if you are a smoker! Take the time to learn the warning signs of oral diseases, get tested regularly, and avoid harmful cigarettes.
What is Oral Cancer?
Cancer, simply put, is an abnormal growth of malignant cells. Throughout our lives, our cells are always splitting and regrowing, though typically in a controlled fashion. However, whenever that process is altered, it causes the cells to grow in a rapid manner, clustering to form what is known as a tumor. Oral cancer can happen anywhere on or around the mouth, including on your lips, gums, cheeks, and soft palate tissues. It often appears in the form of a lesion or sore, and if left untreated, the malignant cells can reach to other parts of your body, and the result can be life-threatening.
So, how can you tell if you are developing signs of cancer and not another oral disease, such as gingivitis? While some symptoms, such as pain, bleeding, or swelling can be present in both, other indications that you may have oral cancer include:
Sores that develop near or in the mouth that bleed persistently and do not heal
Swollen areas, such as lumps, bumps, or thickenings
Developing abnormal white or red patches on the skin or inside the mouth
Loose teeth or dentures
Pain in the tongue, jaw, or throat
Stiffness, numbness, loss of feeling, or significant tenderness in the face, jaw, or inside the mouth (which may cause difficulty breathing, eating, or talking)
Soreness or swelling in the back of the throat
Significant, unexplained weight loss
Who is at Risk?
Studies have shown that oral cancer is typically found more often in men than women. Men over the age of 50, specifically, should take extra care to take preventative measures against the disease. However, the most significant correlation found is with oral cancer patients and tobacco. The use of tobacco?whether smoked or chewed?can significantly increase your chances of getting oral cancer. Around 90% of mouth cancer patients have also reported tobacco use.
Tobacco Use and Oral Cancer
All types of tobacco, including those found in cigars, cigarettes, or pipes, come from tobacco leaves; and, cigarette companies use a myriad of additives to help make the experience even more “enjoyable” for users. The truth is, tobacco smoke is made up of over 7,000 chemicals…and at least 70 of them are known carcinogens (aka, cancer-causing). Not only can they cause diseases in your mouth, lungs, or heart, but also cigarettes can ultimately be fatal. At least 30% of all deaths in the United States are attributed to complications from smoking, and there is no safe way to consume tobacco.
However, even non-smokers can develop cancerous tissue in their mouth, so it helps to know what else can increase your risk of oral cancer. Other causes of oral cavity cancer include:
Excessive alcohol use. In addition to being detrimental to your health, drinking lots of alcohol can also erode the natural coating on your teeth, making you more susceptible to other infections.
Exposure to the sun. As with other areas of your body, applying sunscreen to your lips and around your mouth can reduce your risk of melanoma or of other cancers.
Certain diseases, like HPV. Known as the human papillomavirus, HPV is a sexually-transmitted disease. So, practicing safe sex and getting regularly tested can help to significantly reduce this hazard.
Other factors, such as a family history of cancer or a weakened immune system may also put you at higher risk. Patients with these factors should be especially vigilant about taking preventative measures.
Protect Yourself, and Reduce Your Chances
The most proactive way to reduce your chance of infections, diseases, or cancer is by taking preventative measures. The best place to start is by quitting smoking! If you have never smoked or chewed tobacco?don’t start! Even using tobacco once can negatively impact your health, including the integrity of your teeth and gums. Other ways you can lessen your risk of developing cancer is by eating healthy, by properly brushing and flossing your teeth, and by visiting your dentist on a regular basis! At Williams Dental & Orthodontics, we offer general services, including cleanings and oral cancer screenings. If you or a family member needs to schedule a dental consultation in Skiatook, OK, call us today at (918) 396-3711!
For many people, toothaches are an unfortunate part of life. A toothache can vary wildly in severity; some aches cause mild discomfort, while other aches are so intense that they keep a person’s up at night. A toothache can cause other symptoms such as jaw soreness, swelling, headaches, or even fever. If these symptoms persist, it is recommended that you see your dentist in case of an emergency
In the meantime, living with the pain of a toothache can be very frustrating. A toothache may last for a long time, depending on the individual’s case. However, you don’t have to live with the pain. There are some easy home remedies you can take for some fast toothache relief. Here are seven ways to relieve a toothache at home
1. Swish Salt Water in Your Mouth.
Infection is often the culprit behind a toothache, and salt water is a great solution to infection. Salt works as a cleaning agent, drawing out any infection and killing it. Salt water will also reduce inflammation with the gums, leading to a decrease in pain.
The beauty of this remedy is its simplicity. All you need to do is grab a glass of water and add one tablespoon of salt. Mix the salt enough so that it dissolves into the water. Once dissolved, put a mouthful of the salt water into your mouth and swish it around for at least 30 seconds. Don’t swallow the solution, instead spit it out when you are done. Repeat this every few hours until the toothache disappears.
2. Dab Clove Oil Over the Pained Area.
Clove is an essential oil that treats a variety of health problems: skin irritation, indigestion, headaches, stress, and teeth issues. Clove oil contains antimicrobial, antiseptic, and antiviral properties that fight off infection. Clove oil also works as an anesthetic, leading to a slight loss of sensation when applied to gums. Because of these effects, clove oil is great for countering toothache.
If you happen to have this essential oil in your household, dab some clove oil drops onto a cotton cloth. Then gently rub this over the painful area. If you don’t have clove oil, you can buy this product from a pharmacy, a health store, or an online retailer.
3. Apply a Cold Compress or a Hot Pack.
Did you know that dental pain can be reduced by temperature? A cold application may be able to ease swollen gums by constricting the blood flow of the affected area. This constriction will help to slow down the pain of a toothache. Meanwhile, a hot compress is supposed to draw out an infection.
If you have an ice pack or some ice cubes, use those to hold up against the cheek near the aching tooth. If you’re interested in using the hot compress, take a rag and rinse it in warm water; apply the towel against the toothache. Apply one of these compresses for at least 15 minutes.
4. Try Tea Bags.
Tea bags, particularly peppermint flavored bags, can be used to soothe sensitive gums. Some tea bags even contain numbing properties. When it comes to a toothache, you have two options with tea bags: you can make a cup of tea to drink, or you can place an unused tea bag directly over the affected area of teeth.
5. Swish Hydrogen Peroxide in Your Mouth.
If you have a bottle of hydrogen peroxide at home, then you are in luck. Hydrogen peroxide is a cleaning solution that instantly stops toothache pain in its track. Its antiseptic properties help to clean wounds and prevent infection.
Like with salt water, hydrogen peroxide is a fairly simple remedy. Pour one tablespoon of hydrogen peroxide with one tablespoon of water. Mix it up and rinse it in your mouth for about a minute. Your hydrogen peroxide bottle label should also come with instructions for teeth use, so be sure to follow those directions just in case.
6. Use Over-the-Counter Oral Care Products.
In this modern age, there are products designed specifically for toothache relief. Oral pain products are often laced with strong numbing ingredients that bring quick relief. Check your local pharmacy or an online retailer to find some quality oral analgesics. Any oral care product will typically come with instructions for application.
7. Employ Preventive Dental Care.
If you would like to avoid toothache in the long term, then keeping up decent oral hygiene will help to achieve this. Visiting https://www.williamsdentalok.com/on an annual basis will ensure that any dental problems will get taken care of in its early stages. Brushing and flossing twice a day will keep your gums healthy. Avoiding sugary foods will reduce the risk of cavity development.
8. Try Oil Pulling
This ancient remedy is surprisingly effective. Oils such as coconut oil, olive oil, sesame oil can be used to clean the mouth. The oil works to reduce plaque, improve bad breath, and wash out the bacteria in your teeth.
This is how it works: you take any kind of household oil, swish it around your mouth for at least 20 minutes, and spit it out. Make sure that you don’t accidentally swallow any of the oil during or after the 20 minute time period; the oil is supposed to be pulling harmful bacteria at this time. Once you are done oil pulling, brush your teeth as you normally would.
Key Steps for Preventing Tooth Decay and Boosting Oral Health
It is vital for everyone including you to keep your teeth clean and take care of your oral dental health. Otherwise, you may suffer from tooth decay, cold sores, and even thrush. There are key steps you can take to prevent tooth decay and improve your oral dental health.
Brushing and Flossing Your Teeth
If you want to keep your teeth and gums healthy, be sure to brush your teeth twice per day with a fluoride-based toothpaste. Brush your teeth before going to bed in the evening and after you have breakfast in the morning. Don’t forget to replace your toothbrush every three or four months. Use dental floss or interdental cleaners every day to remove any food that may be stuck between your teeth.
Use a mouthwash containing fluoride every day to boost your oral dental health. This will help you keep your mouth free of bacteria. Mouthwashes often have antiseptic ingredients that destroys bacteria known to cause plaque.
The Right Diet to Keep Your Mouth Healthy
Another way to keep your teeth and gums healthy is to eat quality nutritious meals and snacks. You should avoid eating hard candy, chocolates, and junk food such as chips or pretzels. You will especially want to limit the amount of sugar you consume.
Add fruits and vegetables to your diet instead. You will want to follow the recommendations of the American Dietetic Association and the National Institutes of Health when it comes to eating the right nutrition.
Essentially, you will want to eat a balanced diet using the five food groups, which includes milk and dairy products, chicken, meat, fish or beans, breads and cereals, fruits, and vegetables. It is important to avoid any new diets on the market that will tell you to take out entire food groups from your meals.
When snacking, you will want to avoid sticky and sweet foods that stick to your teeth. This includes cake, candy, and even dried fruit. Instead, you may want to consume yogurt, nuts, and raw vegetables. Have a combination of different foods in order to neutralize the acids that will form in your mouth.
If you eat something that gets stuck between your teeth, be sure to floss and brush your teeth at the first opportunity. Avoid smoking or chewing tobacco in order to keep your teeth clean, white, and healthy. Smoking and chewing tobacco can stain your teeth and cause cancer.
Drink plenty of water to keep your mouth moist and prevent dehydration. Saliva protects both your teeth and your gums. You should also drink fluoridated water to keep your teeth healthy. This will prevent tooth decay and other dental problems.
In addition, you may want to ask your dentist if you should use supplemental fluoride. This may also help you keep your oral health in top shape. Fluoride is known to strengthen teeth.
Visit Your Dentist Twice Per Year
Along with eating right, flossing, and brushing your teeth, be sure to visit your dentist twice per year so that future dental problems could be prevented. If you have a toothache or other dental issues, make an additional appointment with your dentist. Regular visits with your dentist can help you live a long life of superior oral health. You may live your whole life with your original teeth if you regularly see your dentist.
Also, you may want to talk to your dentist about getting dental sealants, which are plastic coatings that protect your teeth. You may want to get dental sealants to protect your back teeth from decaying. In addition, ask your dentist if any medicine you may be taking could damage your teeth and tell your healthcare professional about any mouth sores that haven’t healed.
How to Keep Your Child’s Teeth Healthy
If you want to help your child take good care of their teeth, be sure to start taking them to the dentist at one year of age after their teeth come in. By two years old, children should start brushing their teeth using toothpaste. If your child is older and plays any contact sports, be sure they wear protective headgear to protect their mouth and teeth from injury.
The Health Problems Associated with Poor Dental Hygiene
If you do not follow the recommendations above for taking care of your teeth and gums, there are serious dental problems you may face. The most common is cavities. When your tooth decays, you end up with a cavity that needs to be filled.
If you do not brush or floss your teeth regularly, the food and bacteria left in your mouth will decay your teeth. If you do not get a cavity treated by a dentist quickly, your mouth will be in pain and you may get an infection or even lose your tooth.
Another common health problem associated with inferior dental hygiene is gum disease. The plaque left on your teeth could cause gum disease in the future. This means that the tissue supporting your teeth becomes infected and your teeth may become loose over time. More importantly, gum disease is linked to heart disease, which is an excellent reason to floss and brush your teeth to keep your gums healthy.
Another serious medical concern that can occur due to smoking, drinking too much alcohol, or chewing tobacco is oral cancer. While poor oral hygiene will likely not increase your risk of oral cancer, consuming toxins in the form of tobacco or alcohol does raise your risk.
However, if you follow the advice above explaining how to keep your oral health in top shape, you will likely not have to worry about gum disease, cavities, or oral cancer. If you don’t have a dental provider, you will want to make an appointment as soon as possible. Please call Williams Dental & Orthodontics at 918-396-3711 Mondays to Fridays from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM.
When dental crowns are lost, try not to panic. The experience can be unsettling and sometimes painful, but there are some actions that you can take in order to keep your crown and your tooth safe until you can see a dentist.
There are many reasons why your crown may have fallen out such as chewing hard foods or in one of the worst-case scenarios, tooth decay. In some cases, the adhesive holding on the crown eventually wears down and leaks out from underneath the crown after years of use. Trauma and grinding of the teeth are also big culprits when it comes to crowns falling off as well, so make sure to take precautions like using a mouth guard at night or during sports. If you notice that your crown is starting to become loose, your dentist can help to reattach it before it completely comes off.
If you don’t take care of the problem, the tooth below can quickly decay and cause additional dental problems. No matter what the condition of the tooth underneath the crown, it’s important to take action as quickly as possible to make the situation as easy to handle as possible.
Find the Crown
This seems like it should be obvious, but some people panic when they lose their crown and don’t think about saving it. In some cases, the porcelain crowns can be reattached to your tooth as long as your dentist at Williams Dental and Orthodontics is seen fast enough.
If you accidentally swallow one of your porcelain crowns, don’t worry. You probably don’t want to have it reattached, but it probably won’t cause any problems on its way out. In most cases, dental crowns fall out during eating or while brushing or flossing your teeth. When you find it, clean it carefully with a toothbrush and store it somewhere safe until you decide what to do next.
Call Your Dentist
Timing is everything when it comes to dental care. Try to make an appointment as quickly as you can. It’s likely that you won’t be able to get it on the same day that you call, but they may be able to get you an emergency appointment for a date in the very near future.
Protect Your Tooth or Replace the Crown
As long as you have the crown still and assuming there isn’t any severe decaying of the tooth it was attached to, it should be relatively easy to attach. You can purchase dental cement at most pharmacies that can temporarily reattach the crown in order to keep bacteria from entering the tooth and causing further damage.
Temporarily reattaching the crown with dental cement is a relatively simple process. After the crown and tooth are cleaned thoroughly, coat the tooth and crown with the cement and firmly press the crown back into place. Before you apply the cement, place the crown on the tooth and gently bite down to make sure that it is placed onto the tooth correctly.
If you can’t find the crown, it’s possible to just coat the tooth itself with dental cement or wax to protect the tooth.
It’s important to remember that this is only a temporary solution. While you may be able to reattach the crown, only a dental professional can ensure that it is properly placed and bonded to the tooth below to prevent it from coming off again.
Take Care of the Pain
Losing a crown can be painful as it can expose the nerves that are inside of the tooth, this pain can get worse while eating and drinking. While the pain is usually relatively minor, it can sometimes become quite severe and unbearable for some.
To dull the pain, you can either use local anesthetics that contain benzocaine or even clove oil if you would prefer a natural solution. These are to be applied directly to the affected area with a cotton swab in order to numb part of the pain.
In addition, over the counter pain medication that contains aspirin, ibuprofen, or acetaminophen can also help relieve some of the pain that is associated with the loss of a dental crown.
Take Care of Your Teeth
Oral hygiene is always important, but even more so after you lose a crown as the internal part of your tooth is exposed to bacteria and food debris. Make sure to brush the affected area gently as too much pressure and friction can loosen the crown again and cause further irritation. It’s also a good idea to rinse your mouth out with salt water after you are finished eating to help keep the area clean and infection free.
Watch Your Diet
As mentioned before, certain foods can cause additional pain after you have lost your crown. In addition, certain foods can also cause damage to the tooth below as it is may still be exposed even if you have temporarily replaced the crown. It’s important to try to avoid any additional damage before you can get into a dentist to make sure that replacing the crown goes as smoothly as possible without requiring any additional dental procedures.
Avoid food and drinks that are too sugary, hard to chew, extreme temperatures, or anything that is erosive or acidic. If the tooth below the crown is not taken care of, you may require a root canal or that it be completely removed.
Contact Williams Dental and Orthodontics in Skiatook,Oklahoma
Even if the crown simply needs to be replaced, you’ll still need to speak to a dental professional. If there are any signs of decay, they will need to be treated by a trained professional like those at Williams Dental and Orthodontics. Contact us today to make an appointment!
The one procedure that has captured the attention of many of our patients, is dental implants. But, what are dental implants? How do they work? How can you get them? These are the questions that everyone should ask before receiving a cosmetic dental treatment, and in this article we hope to give you a few quick answers to your most frequently asked questions.
What are implants?
In short, dental implants are regarded as a semi-permanent treatment alternative to many dental concerns. The procedure involves attaching a customized façade securely to your existing teeth, thereby filling in the gaps in your smile, correcting any discoloration, and leaving the teeth with a unified glistening-white appearance. This façade is wafer thin, and should be indistinguishable from natural, healthy looking teeth by the end of treatment.
Once you have received your implants, your teeth will still function normally, and usually require very little additional maintenance. In many cases implants can last decades with little-to-no specialized assistance.
What’s involved in the procedure?
Receiving dental implants is a complex treatment option that should only be done by a licensed and skilled dentist. Given the surge of interest in dental implants in particular, you can now find a general dentist to perform the treatment; for example, Dr. Brad Williams of WilliamsDentalOK.com in Skiatook, Oklahoma.
Receiving a dental implant is an outpatient surgical procedure that is (most often) performed in steps …
The unhealthy tooth is extracted
The jawbone is prepped for the procedure
After the jawbone has some time to heal, your doctor will outfit your jaw with a metallic dental implant post which will be used to support a prosthesis (like veneers)
The jaw is allowed further time to heal in preparation to receive veneers or some other kind of tooth-replacement
The doctor installs an abutment, which is an addition to the implant post
After taking a little more time to heal, your dentist will take impressions of your teeth (and jawbone) and implant the replacement teeth.
The entire treatment can require several months (from start to finish) to complete, however, most of this time is spent during the healing stages between trips to your doctor.
Should I consider dental Implants?
You should consult directly with WilliamsDentalOK.com before contemplating any type of voluntary treatment, like implants . Only qualified dentists, who are equipped with your full medical track-record and a professional relationship with you, can tell you for certain if implants are a good option for you. However, implants are used to resolve many common oral health problems. So, if you have experienced …
Chipped, broken, or worn-down teeth
Misaligned or uneven teeth
Then implants could be a real game-changer for your oral health, since they are commonly used to treat those specific conditions. And the benefits are tremendous …
Although brand new, your smile will look extremely natural
Teeth will be better able to resist staining
Color and alignment correcting for all of your teeth without painful braces or other orthodontic options.
Teeth will feel stronger and, in some cases, less sensitive
If you feel that dental implants are the right decision for you, then contact Dr. Williams today!
George Washington is arguably one of our most celebrated presidents we’ve ever had. Not only a forefather of our great country, but a great leader. But his legacy isn’t just leadership achievements, it also has some interesting myths. We’ve all heard the cherry tree myth, where he famously stated he “cannot tell a lie”. But have you heard the idea that George Washington had wooden teeth? It’s true. Well, it’s sort of true.
It is no myth that George Washington had dental issues. At the time, it wasn’t tough to develop dental problems, especially in the military. And since dental technology was primitive at best, poor dental health was a general throughout his entire career. Because of these issues, he wore various sets of dentures constructed of ivory, gold and lead. Unfortunately, wood was never even an option at the time. Myth busted.
So why do we think he had wooden teeth? Well, dental scientists and historians believe it was due to the ivory set he used. As with all of us, teeth become stained over time. Because they were made of ivory, these studies lead us to believe the stained ivory gave the impression of wood.
Believe it or not, when George Washington did his First Inaugural Address in 1789, he only had one natural tooth, so the dentures were definitely necessary, and because they weren’t constructed as well as they are today, they were very painful to wear. This dental pain forced him to have a dour expression at all times. It is possible the myth was construed to make President Washington more relatable and less remote.
If you have any questions or concerns regarding dental restorations, contact Williams Dental and Orthodontics at (918)396-3711 or williamsdentalok.com.
Williams Dental and Orthodontics proudly serves Skiatook, Sperry, Collinsville, Hominy, Owasso and all surrounding areas.
As soon as October hits, the air turns from Indian summer to chilly Fall. And just like that, out come the cutest little ghouls and goblins waiting to trick-or-treat. Yes, the tiny humans in your family are especially excited about this sugary nightmare of a holiday and there is little a parent can do. After all, we know that too much of a sugary thing will only lead to dental issues in the future. But there is no need to deprive your child of this sweetest of holidays, just keep an eye on what it could do to their teeth. The following is a list of your child’s Halloween dental health enemies:
Sour. Sour candies can ruin your tooth enamel by combining sweet with sour for a pH level of 2.5, a level that high can cause serious damage to developing teeth so keep them clear of this fruity confection.
Sticky. It may seem fairly harmless, but sticky candy is some of the worst for teeth. Not only does the sticky texture stick to your teeth’s surface and in their crevices, but they can also loosen dental fixtures, like braces or fillings.
Gummi. Similar to caramels and other sticky candies, gummy candies also stick to the crevices of your teeth, making it difficult to remove with a brushing or a quick rinse of water.
Hard. Not only can hard candy damage teeth when bitten, but even if you don’t bite them, sucking on hard candy isn’t a quick process, making time for sugars to nestle into a tooth and cause cavities extensive.
If you have any questions or concerns regarding pediatric dentistry, contact Williams Dental and Orthodontics at (918)396-3711 or williamsdentalok.com.
Williams Dental and Orthodontics proudly serves Tulsa, Skiatook, Sperry, Collinsville, Hominy and Owasso.
Getting New Natural Looking Teeth through Dental Implants
Dental implants are one of the best, if not the best, choices when it comes to replacing missing teeth. The results don’t just look natural, as if you never lost any teeth at all, but they are also very secure and are a lot more comfortable compared to bridges and dentures. While it is true that getting an implant is not by any means a quick process, the fact that the newly restored tooth or teeth look and feel natural are well worth the hassle.
Before treatment begins, your dentist will have to assess first if your teeth are suitable for implants. This usually includes taking x-rays to check the bone density and mass of your jaws. Once your dentist has finished the evaluation and you’re found out to be a suitable candidate, the dentist will then begin going over with you the different stages involved in the planning of the surgery.
The Placement of the Dental Implant
To start things, the dental surgeon will insert an implant into your jaw. This implant is usually made from titanium because this element rarely, if at all, produces any negative reactions with the human body. The implant will then be left to heal to allow osseointegration, or for the implant to fuse naturally into your jawbone.
The surgery won’t really take long, but you should still rest after. If you feel woozy or if there’s any discomfort, the use of over-the-counter painkillers is allowed.
After the implant has healed, the second part involves uncovering the implant, then another surgical procedure, only this time to attach a post. But, only if necessary, which doesn’t always happen to be the case.
Lastly, the crown will be custom-made so that it fits right over the post. The dentist will take an impression of your implant and then send it over to a dental laboratory. The color or shade of your teeth will also be measured to make sure that the crown doesn’t stand out once it’s fitted in.
The final process usually takes around two weeks as the crown has to be custom-made first in the laboratory and then sent back to your dentist. Once it’s finished, the crown will be fitted and it should look and even feel as if you had your old tooth put right back in there.
This is where the process ends and where the dentist will tell you how to take proper care of your dental implant, as well as your teeth. If taken care of properly, dental implants can last for a decade or even more! In fact, it’s not surprising for the implant to last for the rest of an adult patient’s life.
For more information on dental implants or to make an appointment call Williams Dental in Skiatook, OK at 918-396-3711. Visit our website at http://www.williamsdentalok.com.