New Research Shows Obesity is a Possible Risk Factor for Gum Disease

Obesity Affects Gum DiseaseSAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA – Obesity is a common problem in America. The CDC reports 35.7 percent of American adults are obese, and 17 percent of children are obese. Obesity can trigger other serious health issues, including diabetes, cardiovascular disease and certain cancers. New research published in the January/February issue of General Dentistry suggests that obesity is also a risk factor for periodontal disease.

Periodontal disease, like obesity, has also been linked to cardiovascular disease and diabetes. The cyclical nature of periodontal disease and diabetes can disturb your oral and overall health. Raised blood sugar levels can make your periodontal disease harder to control, and the presence of periodontal disease can make it difficult to manage your blood sugar levels.

At Larson Dentistry, we treat patients with early and advanced periodontal disease, though you’ll have an easier time eradicating it in its early stages. Advanced periodontal disease can even cause you to lose teeth. San Francisco teeth implant dentistry can replace your missing teeth and help you regain normal oral functions. We offer sedation dentistry options to keep you comfortable, relaxed and pain free.

Researchers continue to search for the exact link between obesity and periodontal disease, and this study gives us a little more insight into the problem.

“Obese individuals’ bodies relentlessly produce cytokines, proteins with inflammatory properties,” says lead study author Dr. Charlene Krejci. “These cytokines may directly injure the gum tissues or reduce blood flow to the gum tissues, thus promoting the development of gum disease.”

Crooked or crowded teeth can also contribute to the development of periodontal disease. Crooked teeth are more difficult to keep clean, giving plaque and bacteria more places to hide. We offer Invisalign and Invisalign Teen to help straighten your smiles and improve your oral health.

You also have a higher risk of developing obstructive sleep apnea if you’re obese or overweight. OSA causes you to stop breathing during sleep, and you’ll most likely wake up gasping for breath. Sleep apnea can cause serious problems such as daytime exhaustion, trouble concentrating, sexual problems and even cardiovascular disease. Dr. Greg Larson is a skilled SF dental sleep apnea expert, and he evaluates each patient’s need individually. Some of you may benefit from a custom nighttime orthotic that encourages normal breathing during sleep.

We encourage our patients to live long, healthy lives, and good oral health is an important component. While regular brushing, flossing and professional dental care are extremely important, your diet is key, too. Eat a nutritious diet full of vegetables and fruit to enjoy good oral and overall health. Limit your intake of refined sugars and acidic sodas; this will help prevent obesity and keep your teeth and gums healthy. We are always here to answer your oral health questions and to provide painless dentistry.

© 2013 Sinai Marketing and Dr. Greg Larson. Authorization to post is granted, with the stipulation that Sinai Marketing and Dr. Greg Larson are credited as sole source. Linking to other sites from this press release is strictly prohibited, with the exception of herein imbedded links.

A Guide to Dental Emergencies

Dental Emergency AttentionsSAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA – When a real dental emergency strikes, you might not have the time or the calm frame of mind to research your next move. At Larson Dentistry we’ve outlined some common dental emergencies you may encounter. We also give guidelines on the best way to react, which emergencies need immediate attention and which can’t wait for an appointment in San Rafael  area.

You Knocked Out A Tooth
First of all, don’t panic! There may be a chance to implant a knocked out tooth back into your mouth if you move fast. Be careful not to touch your tooth’s root. Rinse the tooth with water and try to fit it back into your empty socket. Call your dentist immediately or go into his office. Don’t force your tooth into the socket if it doesn’t fit; now you’ll want to keep the tooth damp, so place the tooth in a container with milk. If that’s not available, spit into a container and store the tooth there. Your tooth will be healthy in saliva. At the very least, submerge your avulsed tooth in water. No worries if we can’t restore your natural tooth, head of San Francisco cosmetic dentistry Dr. Greg Larson can replace your missing tooth with a dental implant and crown.

You Have Toothaches
There are a few reasons you might have a toothache. Most toothaches are caused by tooth decay, cavities or infection. You can take a pain reducing medicine or hold a cold compress to your aching tooth. You should see your dentist if your tooth continues to ache for more than a day or two. Persistent pain probably means you need dental care, so call your dentist to schedule an appointment. Sometimes an earache could cause you pain in your jaw or tooth. You may also have tooth pain if you grind your teeth or have misaligned teeth. San Francisco implant dentist adds that Invisalign can help align your teeth and reduce pain attributed to a misaligned bite.

You Cracked A Tooth
You may crack a tooth from an accident or from certain foods. If you have a cracked tooth, rinse your mouth with water. You can use a cold compress for the pain. The cold compress is your friend. Look for any pieces that may have chipped off your tooth. Save any found portions of your tooth. Call your dentist as soon as possible to have him assess the damage and strengthen your tooth.

You Suffered A Blow to the Jaw
Hard hits to the face and jaw can potentially cause lots of damage. Hold a cold compress to your jaw to reduce your pain and decrease swelling. Visit the emergency room if you’re concerned about a broken jaw. If your jaw pain is related to an injury but is not an emergency, call our team. Dr. Larson is a skilled neuromuscular dentist, and he can give your jaw a comprehensive evaluation as well as general dentistry questions and issues.

You Have Something Lodged Between Your Teeth
Many people get things stuck in their teeth. It’s completely normal. Only attempt to remove lodged objects with dental floss. Never put anything sharp between your teeth; you could cause more damage than you started with. Contact your dentist if the dental floss is unsuccessful.

How You Can Prevent Dental Emergencies
While not all accidents can be avoided, there are ways to prevent some dental emergencies from occurring. Wear a custom mouth guard during sporting events to protect your teeth and gums from equipment and from other players. Don’t open plastic packages with your teeth; leave that to the scissors. You should also be aware that certain hard foods are strong enough to crack your teeth, such as ice, tough candies and popcorn kernels. Make sure your children ride in appropriate car seats or toddler booster seats in the car. Use common sense to protect your teeth from unwanted injuries and keep your smile flawless.

Please call our office if you have a dental emergency that needs attention. For blows to the head or emergencies that happen when we’re not in the office, call or visit your local emergency room.

© 2013 Sinai Marketing and Dr. Greg Larson. Authorization to post is granted, with the stipulation that Sinai Marketing and Dr. Greg Larson are credited as sole source. Linking to other sites from this press release is strictly prohibited, with the exception of herein imbedded links.

Tooth Whitening and Other Cosmetic Procedures Improve Your Valentine’s Day Smile

San Francisco teeth whiteningSAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA – Dental care has advanced far beyond treating cavities and removing tooth decay. With cosmetic dentistry you can achieve your dream smile.

A smile is a delicate thing, and Dr. Greg Larson uses golden proportion science in his artistry and dentistry to create smiles that compliment our patients. Our team will take your features into account so your improved smile matches your overall look. Hair color, eye color and facial structure all impact the way people perceive you. We want to up the wattage of your smile to please you and your love interest this Valentine’s Day.

Is your smile less than brilliant?
Professional tooth whitening is surprisingly affordable, and it makes a huge and immediate difference in your smile. San Francisco dentist Dr. Larson can whiten your teeth up to 10 shades with the Zoom! and Kör deep whitening systems. With your gums and lips protected, the Zoom! gel is applied to your teeth. The Zoom! laser activates the gel, giving you a brilliant white smile to flaunt all over town. The process is quick, pain-free and yields impressive results.

Do you have chipped, gapped or misshapen teeth?
Dental veneers can correct a wide variety of imperfections in your smile. Dr. Larson can cover discolorations, fix chips and gaps and improve the shape and size of your teeth with porcelain veneers. Veneers are custom-made for your teeth, so they’ll fit well and blend in perfectly with your surrounding teeth. They function just like your normal teeth, too. You can smile beautifully on Valentine’s Day with porcelain veneers.

Do crooked teeth inhibit your self-esteem?
Straight teeth can be achieved at any age without unattractive metal filling your mouth. Invisalign straightens your teeth with a series of clear aligners. You can take these aligners out to eat, drink, brush and floss. You can also take them out to enjoy a special Valentine’s Day dinner with your sweetheart. Straight teeth will give you a more attractive smile, boosting your self-esteem and improving your self-image. With most Invisalign cases, you can enjoy an aligned and revitalized smile in less than one year! Dr. Larson is a certified SF Invisalign dentist.

Do you have a gummy smile?
Some of our patients are concerned that overgrown gums inhibit their smiles. Dr. Larson offers laser gum contouring to sculpt an ideal gum line. You can most likely undergo this procedure in one quick office visit.

Treat yourself this Valentine’s Day. Contact us today to make your dream smile a reality.

© 2013 Sinai Marketing and Dr. Greg Larson. Authorization to post is granted, with the stipulation that Sinai Marketing and Dr. Greg Larson are credited as sole source. Linking to other sites from this press release is strictly prohibited, with the exception of herein imbedded links.

Dental Health and Diabetes: How One Makes You More At-Risk for the Other

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA – The American Diabetes Association tells us approximately 26 million Americans suffer from diabetes. This number reflects about 8 percent of the U.S. population. Diabetes makes it difficult for our bodies to process sugar, and the increased blood sugar levels can cause issues with your heart, kidneys, eyes, nerves and gums.

Diabetes and gum disease have a special relationship. Diabetes puts you more at risk for gum disease, and gum disease puts you more at risk for diabetes. One of San Francisco dentists, Dr. Greg Larson wants patients to understand the cyclical nature of gum health and diabetes.

Gum Disease and Diabetes
The elevated blood sugar levels accompanying diabetes make it harder to keep plaque off your teeth and gums. The presence of gum disease makes it more difficult than normal for you to maintain healthy blood sugar levels. As plaque and bacteria build, your gums can recede and become infected. Without proper care, gingivitis and gum disease could develop.

Gum disease causes gum inflammation, bleeding, recession and tooth sensitivity. Pockets of pus form in the gaps created by receding gums, and eventually your teeth can loosen and fall out. San Francisco dental implants can replace lost teeth as long as your jawbone is healthy enough to support the implant. Keeping existing teeth healthy is a top priority for dental care, but if you do lose teeth, implants can help stabilize your bite, improve your digestion and boost your confidence.

Visit the Dentist Regularly
Gum disease can be prevented with the right oral care. Dr. Larson, who is also a San Francisco cosmetic dentist, may want to see you more often if you have diabetes. The American Dental Association recommends dental visits every six months, but diabetes patients may need to visit every three to four months to decrease their risks of gum disease.

Tell your dentist and hygienist about your diabetes health, and make sure to fill in your dental team on any changes in your disease. Your dentist will let you know how often you should visit for cleanings and exams.

You may discover gum disease is already present in your mouth. San Francisco teeth whitening dentist Dr. Larson can treat gum disease with ultrasonic and laser technology. Research shows treating gum disease can help you control your blood sugar levels.

Take Care of Your Teeth and Gums
Floss at least once a day to free trapped food particles from between your teeth. Brush at least twice a day for at least two minutes at a time. Use small circles to clean every surface of every tooth – the front, back and chewing surfaces. Remember to brush or scrape your tongue to reduce oral bacteria and improve your breath.

Pay attention to your teeth and gums, and note any changes in your mouth. Signs of gum disease include red, swollen gums, bleeding gums, pus pockets between the teeth, loose or tender teeth, persistent bad breath, changes in your bite and receding gums.

Control Your Diabetes
Control your blood sugar levels to keep your diabetes stable and reduce your risks of gum disease. Altering your diet to decrease sugar intake will benefit your oral health and help control your diabetes. The American Diabetes Association suggests a decrease in sugar-sweetened drinks, such as sweet tea, soda, energy drinks, fruit punch and sports drinks.

A balanced diet will help control blood sugar and decrease your risk of gum disease. Plan low-fat meals centered on vegetables, fruits and grains, and limit your salt and sugar intake. Choose water over a sugary beverage to increase gum, tooth and overall health.

Diabetes may also increase your risk of oral thrush and dry mouth. Oral thrush is an infection caused by an overgrowth of yeast in the mouth. Dry mouth can cause other oral issues, including oral sores, tenderness and cavities.

The effects of diabetes and dental health can be improved with an improved diet, rigorous oral care and routine dental visits. There is hope to leading a healthier, happier life.

© 2012 Sinai Marketing and Dr. Greg Larson. Authorization to post is granted, with the stipulation that Sinai Marketing and Dr. Greg Larson are credited as sole source. Linking to other sites from this press release is strictly prohibited, with the exception of herein imbedded links.

What Could My Bleeding Gums Signal? Reasons Your Gums May Bleed

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA – Your oral health isn,t solely centered on your teeth. Your gums need some love and attention, too. Your gums are an important foundation to your oral and dental health.

It,s not normal for your gums to bleed, especially not every time you floss or brush your teeth. Dr. Greg Larson, a dentist of San Francisco, put together a list of common reasons you may experience bleeding gums. Keep in mind that the ultimate diagnosis for your bleeding gums will come from your dentist, so make an appointment to find out the root cause of your bleeding.

You Aren,t Flossing Enough
Your gums may bleed when you begin a flossing regimen, and that,s normal. Your gums will most likely get used to the new routine and strengthen themselves. Flossing removes debris from in between your teeth and keeps your gums healthy and strong. Contact your dentist if your gums still bleed after a week or so of consistent flossing. This could mean some other factor is causing your gums to bleed.

You may be avoiding floss because you have braces. In San Francisco Invisalign Teen helps you straighten teeth and keep up your oral hygiene habits. The clear plastic aligners are removable, so you can floss easily and efficiently. Consider Invisalign for your tooth alignment treatment.

Your Hormones Are Fluctuating
Women experience hormone fluctuations throughout their lives that affect oral health. You may have bleeding gums concurrent with puberty, menstrual cycles, pregnancy and menopause. You may also develop “pregnancy gingivitis” during your first trimester with symptoms like tender, painful and bleeding gums. Talk with your dentist if you,re pregnant and experiencing bleeding gums. Gingivitis during pregnancy increases the chances of preterm birth.

You Have Gingivitis or Periodontal Disease
Bleeding gums could certainly signal gingivitis or periodontal disease. Gingivitis is an early stage of periodontal disease, and you can still reverse the damage at this stage with routine flossing, brushing and dental visits. Untreated gingivitis can advance to periodontal disease. Your periodontal disease comes from bacteria collecting and hardening on your teeth, which forms plaque. Your gums will likely swell, grow tender and bleed from the bacteria in your mouth. A thorough cleaning by your hygienist and meticulous oral care at home could help you eradicate all signs of gingivitis. Your dentist or hygienists will check your gums for signs of gingivitis and periodontal disease at your routine visits. Dr. Larson, who is also a sedation dentist, can help decontaminate your gums with laser dentistry and irrigation of your gum pockets.

You,re a Smoker
Tobacco use could cause gums to bleed or sores to form in your mouth. Tobacco is hazardous to your oral health, your lung health, your heart health and your appearance. Smoking can discolor your teeth, dull your taste buds, contribute to tooth loss, increase your risk of periodontal disease and increase your risk of developing oral cancer. Cosmetic dentistry can fix some of these problems, including whitening and replacing teeth, but the best option is to put down the cigarettes for good. Make plans to quit your habit to enjoy excellent oral and overall health.

You,re on Blood Thinning Medication
Some medications are made to thin your blood. These medications may exacerbate your bleeding gums, and your thinned blood bleeds easier than thicker blood. Contact your physician to discuss your medication in relation to your gum health. You may also notice sore and bleeding gums if you,re undergoing chemotherapy.

You Have a Blood Disorder
This explanation isn,t the most common. It,s more likely that you have poor oral hygiene habits, smoke cigarettes, have some degree of gingivitis or you,re experiencing hormonal changes. Make an appointment with your dentist or physician if your bleeding gums persist. Your doctor will get to the bottom of the issue.

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Is Invisalign Right for Me? Ways Invisalign Can Improve Your Smile and Your Life

san francisco invisalign dentistrySAN FRANCISCO – San Francisco dentist Dr. Greg Larson gives his patients straighter teeth with Invisalign. Invisalign treatment includes a series of clear plastic aligners that you change every few weeks. The aligners steadily move your teeth into their most ideal positions.

If you agree with even one of these statements, Invisalign can help you get the smile you’ve always wanted.

Your Teeth and Bite Are Affecting Your Health
Straight teeth aren’t only for looks; they can also benefit your overall health. Straight teeth allow you to chew more efficiently, which aids in digestion. A corrected bite will reduce tension on the bones and muscles in your face and jaw. Straight teeth make it easier for you to floss and brush, which keep your teeth and gums healthy. Good oral health is important for other health issues, including cardiovascular disease and diabetes. A healthy bite can also eradicate headaches caused by misaligned teeth.

You Wish You Had a More Attractive Smile
Many of our San Francisco cosmetic dentistry patients desire aesthetic changes to their smiles. You may have a gummy smile that we can improve with laser gum recontouring. You may have discolored teeth that could be improved by professional teeth whitening, which is provided by Dr. Larson at no extra charge with your Invisalign treatment. Veneers help our patients correct discolored or slightly crooked smiles with porcelain facings.

Invisalign corrects a variety of problems for your teeth, including teeth that are too crowded and teeth with spaces and gaps. Invisalign can also eradicate certain bite issues, such as underbites, overbites, open bites and crossbites.

You Live a Flexible Lifestyle
Invisalign was devised with the flexible patient in mind. We supply you with multiple sets of aligners, so you will control switching to a new set. You will only need to see us about every six or eight weeks, depending on Dr. Larson’s recommendation for your case. You will also be able to take your Invisalign aligners out whenever you need to. That said, effective Invisalign treatment also comes with responsibility, which brings us to our next point.

You Have the Self Control to Keep The Aligners in Often
Our patients are so happy with the flexibility that Invisalign offers. Taking aligners out for a date, a wedding or a fun night out with friends makes our patients happy, but the more you wear the aligners, the more effective your treatment will be. Invisalign suggests you wear your aligners for at least 20 to 22 hours a day for best results. The more often you wear your aligners, the faster you’ll see the results you want.

You Do Not Want the Hassle of Metal Braces
Most adults are hesitant to receive orthodontic care because braces are frequently worn by teens. This stigma may be keeping you from achieving your picture-perfect smile, but it doesn’t have to. With Invisalign treatment, you will receive a series of clear aligners that are hardly noticeable. You will also be able to clean your teeth much more efficiently than you would with metal braces.

You Want to Maintain Good Oral Hygiene
Flossing with metal braces is difficult and time-consuming. You will find removing food particles and bacteria is much harder with metal braces, and food has many places to get trapped. Soft foods such as bread and cheese easily get caught in your brackets and wires. Your back teeth are hard to clean, too, as food can get stuck in the bands around your molars. With Invisalign you won’t have any of these issues. You can remove your aligners to floss, brush and eat. Many Invisalign patients find that they brush more often than they did without the aligners, since they generally brush after every meal.

Contact our office to set up a consultation with cosmetic and teeth whitening dentist Dr. Larson. He will thoroughly inspect your teeth, gums and bite to determine if you’re a good candidate for Invisalign.

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Dentists Take Over San Francisco This October for the 2012 ADA Annual Session

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA – Dentists and dental assistants will flock to San Francisco this month for the American Dental Association and the American Dental Assistants Association Annual Sessions.

San Francisco dentist Dr. Greg Larson is excited to have throngs of dentists visiting his city. His practice offers dental veneers, teeth bleaching, TMD relief and general dentistry in San Francisco, Berkeley and San Rafael.

The ADA Annual Session runs Oct. 18-21, and dentistry leaders will present new research, technology and techniques in the field. The ADAA Annual Session is Oct. 19-20. Though the ADA and the ADAA Annual Sessions are separate events, dental assistants will be able to attend the ADA World Marketplace exhibition and take part in other ADA events.

Dr. Nanette Tertel, an ADA member since 1985, says speakers are accessible and they welcome questions at Annual Sessions. This allows dentists to get more information on the technologies that interest them.

“It seems to be a much more direct correlation on how to help you take this technology right back to your office almost immediately and utilize it to better your dentistry,” says Dr. Tertel.

She says the ability to converse one-on-one with the speakers is more informative than listening to a presentation in a lecture hall.

Attendees can choose from more than 280 continuing education courses at the Annual Session. The Education in the Round courses use live-patient procedures to teach attendees new dentistry techniques. This session’s courses include:

  • User-Friendly Techniques for Automatic Extraction of Teeth and Socket Grafting
  • Lasers in the Dental Practice
  • Examination, Diagnosis and Treatment of the Restorative-TMD Patient

Are you an ADA member who can’t make it to San Francisco this month? You can still catch some of the Annual Session events online. Sign in to ADA365 with your ADA member number and the case sensitive password “ADA365” to catch live streaming events from the Annual Session.

“These will include the six live-patient Education in the Round courses, the Open Clinical and Science Forums, the Opening General Session and a variety of online-only elements such as 2011’s dental student roundtable conversation,” according to the ADA. “As the video streams live, viewers will be able to ask questions of the speakers using a live chat function.”

The Open Clinical Science Forums presented by The Journal of the American Dental Association and the ADA Council give attendees a chance to discuss topics essential to dentistry, agrees Larson, San Francisco sedation dentist. This year there are two forums: Screening for Medical Conditions in the Dental Office and Medication-Associated Osteonecrosis of the Jaws.

Attendees can browse all of the Annual Session events online, including the Health Screening Program, the Distinguished Speaker Series and the ADA Foundation Give Kids A Smile Gala.

© 2012 Master Google and Dr. Greg Larson. Authorization to post is granted, with the stipulation that Dr. Greg Larson and Master Google are credited as sole source. Linking to other sites from this document is strictly prohibited, with the exception of herein imbedded links.

Tooth Tartar of Ancient Hominid Uncovers an Unlikely Diet of Trees, Shrubs and Fruits

Diet of Trees, Shrubs and FruitsSAN FRANCISCO AND SAN RAFAEL, CALIFORNIA – Researchers discovered an unusual diet in a 2 million-year-old hominid by analyzing carbon in fossilized teeth enamel. The hominid, called Australopithecus sediba, survived on hard foods such as bushes, trees and fruits. The first two A. sediba remains were found in 2008 by a research team at Malapa Cave in South Africa.

Dr. Greg Larson watches this study for its analysis of ancient diets through dental fossils. Nature published a paper on the study online on June 27.

Researchers in this study used lasers to free the carbon from the fossilized tooth enamel. The carbon isotope values were determined to be either C3 or C4; C3 insinuates a diet of bushes, shrubs and trees, and C4 means a diet of sedges and grasses.

“The teeth from the two A. sediba individuals analyzed in the study had carbon isotope values outside the range of all 81 previously tested hominids,” according to a University of Colorado Boulder news release.

UC-Boulder doctoral student Paul Sandberg calls the dietary difference of the A. sediba compelling. Researchers were able to detect microscopic specks of solidified plant tissue, called phytoliths, within the ancient dental tartar.

“The fact that these phytoliths are preserved in the teeth of 2 million-year-old hominids is remarkable and speaks to the amazing preservation at the site,” Sandberg says addressing San Francisco and Berkeley dentists. “The phytolith data suggest the A. sediba individuals were avoiding the grasses growing in open grasslands that were abundant in the region at the time.”

Sandberg is co-author of this study led by the Max Planck Institute of Evolutionary Anthropology. He compares the diet of the A. sediba to the diet of modern African chimpanzees. Primates are known to eat bark and wood, as they have important dietary components such as protein and sugar.

A. sediba most likely walked upright, due to the strength of the femur and humerus, according to The Museum of Natural History. A. sediba had long arms and small bodies, and they are believed to exhibit sexual dimorphism, or a size and shape difference between males and females.

Dr. Larson as a provider of dental services to suburb cities of San Francisco, that includes veneers for San Rafael and Berkeley, watches these dental research methods unfold while providing expert oral care to patients in the present.

Larson Dentistry serves patients in San Francisco and San Rafael. Cosmetic dentistry helps our patients feel confident about their smiles. Contact our office to schedule a general dentist appointment or to discuss specialized procedures such as dental implants, laser gum recontouring and full mouth rejuvenation. In San Francisco and Berkeley, teeth whitening finalizes our patients’ straight, healthy smiles.

© 2012 Master Google and Dr. Greg Larson. Authorization to post is granted, with the stipulation that Dr. Greg Larson and Master Google are credited as sole source. Linking to other sites from this document is strictly prohibited, with the exception of herein imbedded links.

Conscious Sedation Dentistry Helps Patients Face Dental Anxieties and Phobias

san francisco pain free dentistrySAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA – Many patients feel unnecessary anxiety when visiting the dentist. Climbing into the dental chair can be daunting, especially if it’s been a while since your last visit.

Rationally, you may know that there’s no cause for alarm, but certain irrational fears can get the best of us. Those with the worst dental anxieties may even postpone or avoid dental work because of their fears.

But there’s no longer a reason to worry about pain, discomfort or your own fears. San Francisco dentist Dr. Greg Larson provides patients a safe, comfortable answer to their dental phobias: conscious sedation. Dr. Larson received his certification from the Dental Organization for Continuing Sedation Education.

Common Dental Phobias
Some of you may be anxious about visiting the dentist, but you may not be able to pinpoint the cause of your anxiety. It’s common to feel nervous about your dental visit, even though there’s absolutely nothing to fear. DOCS Education reports that around 20 percent of patients have some fear of the dentist.

Others may be afraid of a specific feeling, procedure or dental tool. Patients often are afraid of having hygienists clean their teeth. Some are worried about gagging or choking from the dental tools or materials. Some of you may be apprehensive about the drill. This could be because of the noise that accompanies the drill, or it could be that in past procedures you weren’t properly numbed before your procedure. People inquiring about braces or Invisalign invisible retainers may have issues with X-rays or gooey molds. You could be apprehensive about the lasers used during our teeth whitening procedures in San Francisco. Dental implants can also spike patients’ fears.

Your mouth is a very sensitive and private part of your body. Some people simply feel that dentistry is intrusive and it makes them uncomfortable.

What is Conscious Sedation?
Conscious sedation relaxes you and diminishes pain while keeping you awake and aware, as share by San Rafael invisalign expert. You won’t be unnerved by the sound of the drill, and you won’t feel pain. Different sedation medications can be used during your appointment. Ask your doctor which medication he will use.

You’ll take your medication orally. Follow your doctor’s instructions for the day before, as you might have to stop eating before a certain time of day. Patients are monitored during the appointment to ensure that the medication is working correctly.

Conscious sedation not only helps you relax, but it also allows your dentist to work more efficiently, says Dr. Larson who provides cosmetic dentistry in San Francisco. Your dentist will be able to perform multiple procedures in one appointment, rather than lengthening your treatment over several different days.

After Your Appointment
Sedation affects your motor skills and puts you in a deep state of relaxation. You should have a friend or family member drive you to and from your appointment. It is also ideal to have someone stay with you until you’re fully coherent. You should take it easy the rest of the day, and be sure to take medications as your doctor has prescribed them. You may feel that time has passed quickly, and your memory of the dental procedures may be hazy. You can resume all of your normal activities the following day.

You may not be hungry for a big meal, so have light snack foods handy, such as crackers and toast, said San Rafael dentist. Drink plenty of fluids, and avoid alcohol.

Talk honestly with your dentist about your fears. Your dentist should take your concerns seriously. Sedation can help you relax, and it can facilitate procedures for your dentist, reducing the time he or she spends working on your teeth. Don’t be afraid to ask questions about your treatment and your sedation, as knowing all the facts can help you prepare for your appointment physically and mentally.

© 2012 Master Google and Dr. Greg Larson. Authorization to post is granted, with the stipulation that Dr. Greg Larson and Master Google are credited as sole source. Linking to other sites from this document is strictly prohibited, with the exception of herein imbedded links.

Sports and Energy Drinks May Cause Irreversible Damage to Tooth Enamel

san francisco veneersSAN RAFAEL, SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA – It’s common to see active, athletic teens chugging sports drinks on the sidelines to replenish fluids and boost energy. These teens may not be aware that these drinks could cause permanent damage to their teeth.

Dr. Greg Larson discusses the consequences of drinking sports drinks, in light of a recent study published in the May/June issue of General Dentistry.

Nine energy drinks and 13 sports drinks were tested in the study. Researchers submerged human tooth enamel in various drinks for a 15-minute period. The enamel was then submerged in artificial saliva for two hours. The process was repeated four times daily for five days in a row, attempting to mimic a teen’s behavior. The enamel showed deterioration after five days. Researchers noted that the energy drinks were generally twice as harmful as sports drinks.

“This type of testing simulates the same exposure that a large proportion of American teens and young adults are subjecting their teeth to on a regular basis when they drink one of these beverages every few hours,” says Dr. Poonam Jain, lead study author and researcher. “Most of these patients are shocked to learn that these drinks are essentially bathing their teeth with acid.”

The American Beverage Association released a statement calling the study unrealistic to human behavior.

“This study was not conducted on humans and in no way mirrors reality,” the statement reads. “Furthermore, it is irresponsible to blame foods, beverages or any other single factor for enamel loss and tooth decay (dental caries or cavities). Science tells us that individual susceptibility to both dental cavities and tooth erosion varies depending on a person’s dental hygiene behavior, lifestyle, total diet and genetic make-up.”

Enamel is important to our oral health, as it guards our teeth against cavities and decay. Sugars and acids found in sports and energy drinks are detrimental to our teeth’s enamel.

Superb dental health includes eating a balanced diet. Low amounts of sugars and acids will keep your teeth healthy and strong. It’s good practice to research the sugar and acidity of beverages before you or your children consume them.

San Francisco cosmetic dentist Dr. Larson offers pain free dentistry with sedation options. Our patients enjoy beautiful smiles through Invisalign treatment, porcelain veneers and laser gum recontouring. Contact our office to schedule an appointment for you or your child.

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