Archive | PERIODONTAL DISEASE

The basics of gum health

Gum health is just as important as the health of the teeth. While tooth decay is often discussed, gum disease is also a concern that needs to be addressed. Dr. Steven E. Holbrook of Albuquerque, NM believes in educating patients in good overall health and wellness, especially when it comes to the gums and the formation of gum disease.

What is gum disease?

The gums are the soft tissues in the mouth that frame the natural teeth. They are susceptible to damage and infection, just as teeth are, making them just as important in the smile for good oral health and wellness. Gum disease, also referred to as periodontal disease, is a condition that can be extremely damaging to the health of the smile. Periodontal disease starts in the gum tissues as an infection. The gum tissue begins to shrink, causing pockets to form in-between the gums and the natural teeth. Bacteria continues to thrive in these pockets and spreads, causing the loss of tissue, bone, and even permanent adult teeth! This is how devastating the condition can be and why it is so important to avoid the development of gum disease in the first place!

How to maintain healthy gums

First, patients need to reduce their risk of infection. Bacteria can be controlled with routine brushing and flossing. Patients will also want to take a look at their diet and make sure that they are eating right, as this impacts more than just the body but the smile as well. High-sugar and highly acidic foods can be problematic for patients, unless they brush and floss immediately after consumption. If there are any signs of infection, including swollen or bleeding gums, it is time to schedule an appointment with the dentist for a definitive diagnosis and effective treatment protocol.

Improve your smile today!

Educate yourself on the ways to keep your smile healthy with Dr. Steven E. Holbrook and his team. With over thirty years of experience, he can help you and your family achieve better oral health and wellness with routine care. Call (505) 881-1159 today to request a consultation appointment at 8228 Louisiana Boulevard, NE Suite C in Albuquerque, NM.

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Five ways to prevent periodontal disease

Albuquerque, NM area patients who are ready to achieve a healthy, beautiful smile should learn about the ways to protect their smile from gum disease. Below are several things to consider for prevention:

  • Brush your teeth. Plaque, tartar, and bacteria can build up on the teeth all day. By brushing the teeth after every meal, you can keep these problems under control.
  • Floss at least once a day. Food particles stuck between teeth can break down and contribute to periodontal disease and tooth decay. Flossing is important to maintaining oral health and wellness, and should be done at least once a day, if not more.
  • Use mouthwash. Even if you brush and floss thoroughly, you may not be getting your teeth as clean as you think. Mouthwash can be used to get into areas that may have been missed.
  • Attend regular dental appointments. When patients visit their dentist every six months for a cleaning and evaluation, any concerns can be spotted soon enough to effectively treat them before they become a bigger problem.
  • Know your risks. Certain factors can increase your risk of developing periodontal disease, including your age, habits, diet, and genetic factors. Talk with your dental professional if you are at a higher risk to determine the best course of action and any lifestyle changes that can be made.

Call Dr. Steven E. Holbrook today

If you are considering comprehensive dental care and have questions regarding the best way to maintain a healthy smile, connect with our dentist in Albuquerque, NM. Dr. Steve E. Holbrook has over three decades of experience in providing quality general, preventative, cosmetic, and restorative dentistry for new and current families. His practice can be reached for an appointment at (505) 881-1159.

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Treatment solutions for gum disease

Periodontal disease. Gum disease. Infection. Regardless of the name, this condition is known for wreaking havoc on the smile. Periodontal disease is an infection that often begins in the gum tissues and then spreads, causing damage to the soft tissues, jaw bone, and the natural teeth. This infection is 100% preventable with proper oral healthcare habits. When patients brush and floss their teeth after every meal, visit their dentist every six months for a cleaning and evaluation, and contact their dental team as soon as a problem arises, they are greatly reducing their risk of developing disease and decay.

What are the signs of periodontal disease?

There are a few noticeable signs of periodontal disease that may indicate a problem exists. If patients pay close attention to their oral health, they will notice these issues:

  • Bleeding gums
  • Red, swollen gums
  • Tender gum tissue
  • Loose teeth
  • Gum recession
  • Chronic bad breath

If any of these signs appear between dental visits, patients should contact Dr. Steven E. Holbrook for an evaluation. Treatment of periodontal disease in the earlier stages is more effective and less expensive than treatment in the later stages.

What treatments are available for periodontal disease?

There are several approaches a dentist may take to treat periodontal disease.

  • Thorough cleanings – in the earlier stages, often referred to as gingivitis, patients will have a thorough cleaning performed by the dental hygienist. This removes plaque and tartar from the surfaces of the teeth, while allowing for the removal of any food particles that may contribute to the condition.
  • Scaling and root planing – later stages of periodontal disease may benefit from scaling and root planing. This is a cleaning of the teeth and gums that include the roots of the teeth, not just the crowns. This is a deeper, more invasive cleaning, but often provides amazing advantages.
  • Antibiotics – patients may be prescribed antibiotics to take orally, or the dental team may apply antibiotics directly to the smile to eliminate the infection at the source.

Request a visit with Dr. Steven E. Holbrook today!

Albuquerque, NM patients ready to work with a dentist that has over three decades of experience are encouraged to schedule an appointment with Dr. Steven E. Holbrook today. His practice is located at 8228 Louisiana Boulevard, NE, Ste. C and can be reached by phone at (505) 881-1159.

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What Is Gum Contouring?

Periodontal Disease Treatment Albuquerque, NM When patients think of enhancing their smile, their first thought is to address imperfections of the teeth. But what if the teeth aren’t the issue? Some patients have imperfections that impact the gums and may want to seek a solution with an experienced dentist. Common concerns include a smile that is “gummy,” causing the gums to appear too noticeable and the teeth to appear smaller than they actually are. In situations such as this. Dr. Steven E. Holbrook may suggest gum contouring.

What is gum contouring?

Gum contouring, which may also be referred to as gum lifting, is an elective procedure that can be done to reshape or even correct excessive or uneven gums. This is a relatively painless procedure with a fast healing time, and is commonly done for patients who are self-conscious about the appearance of the gums. Gum contouring may also include gum grafting, which is when the gum tissue is built up after patients have experienced a shrinking of the tissues from periodontal disease. This is more of a reconstructive approach to the gum tissue, rather than a cosmetic approach with traditional gum contouring.

During gum contouring, the dentist will remove some of the soft tissues along the gum line and across the teeth near the front of the smile. This will reduce their appearance and address the overgrowth that can occur. Once patients have gum contouring completed, they will be able to feel more confident when they smile and speak. Their teeth may appear larger, and they will achieve proper balance and harmony between the teeth and soft tissues. Many patients find that gum contouring is a procedure they should have considered long ago as they love the self-confidence that is restored with this cosmetic treatment!

Consider gum contouring with our dentist today

Dr. Steven E. Holbrook work with patients in the area of Albuquerque, NM who are seeking cosmetic solutions for their smile. If you are interested in gum contouring, contact the practice at (505) 881-1159 and visit at 8228 Louisiana Boulevard NE, Ste. C. We accept new patients considering general, cosmetic, and restorative dentistry.

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How to Avoid Gum Erosion

Periodontal Disease Albuquerque, NMHaving a naturally gummy smile is one thing, but having receding gums is something else. Receding gums happen when your gums pull away from your teeth, which can cause the tissues to become exposed. When your tissues are exposed, it not only doesn’t look appealing, but it can lead to a host of problems like bacterial infections. Luckily, there are a few basic things that you can do to avoid getting it.

Don’t Brush too Hard

There is such a thing as brushing too hard when you are brushing your teeth. Although you want to get all of the plaque and tartar off of your teeth, brushing too hard can erode the gum tissue, which can eventually lead to receding gums. One of the best things that you can do before you brush along the gumline is wet your soft-bristled toothbrush with hot water which will soften your bristles even more.

Get Regular Cleanings

Another excellent way for you to avoid getting gum erosion or gum disease is to get regular and frequent dental cleanings. During each one of your cleanings, Dr. Holbrook won’t just clean your teeth, but he will clean along the gum line to get rid of any harmful plaque or tartar build-up. Also, if he notices any premature signs of gum erosion, he may recommend a treatment called gum scaling. Gum scaling is a comprehensive cleaning along the gum line to get rid of tartar.

Don’t Use Tobacco

Chewing tobacco, in particular, can lead to extreme gum erosion and gum disease. If you smoke or chew tobacco, you are putting yourself at a higher risk of developing a variety of different things, including gum erosion.

Are you ready to learn a little bit more about how you can take better care of your teeth and gums? If so, schedule an appointment with us at our Albuquerque office and call us at  (505) 881-1159.

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Signs of Gum Disease

Gum Disease, Albuquerque, NM There are few things that you want in life like a good job, a healthy family, and maybe a trip to the beach every year, but there are lots of things that you don’t want anything to do with like gum disease. As one of the most common oral conditions that Dr. Holbrook sees patients for, if you have gum disease, you certainly are not alone. But before you self diagnose yourself with this oral condition, there are a few signs for you to look out for.

  • Red, swollen, bleeding, tender gums- These are the most common symptoms of gum disease. If you are the type of person who only flosses on occasion, then you may experience red, swollen, tender gums when you start flossing again. However, if you floss on a regular basis or if these symptoms don’t subside, then it may be an indication that you have gum disease.
  • Receding Gums- In more advanced stages of gum disease, some patients start to notice that their gums are pulling away from the teeth which causes them to look longer than before. If this goes untreated, it can result in loose or separating teeth.
  • Pus in between your gums and teeth- This is a big indication that you either have gum disease or you have another sort of oral infection.
  • Persistent bad breath- Having bad breath after you eat a garlic burger or if you haven’t brushed your teeth in a few hours is normal, but having persistent bad breath isn’t.
  • A change in the way your teeth fit together when you bite or the way your partial dentures fit- In advanced stages of gum disease, patients experience shifts in the way that their teeth or dentures fit together which isn’t something you should necessarily be experiencing.

If you are experiencing any of the symptoms listed in this article, make sure that you contact Dr. Holbrook today and schedule an appointment. To learn more or to schedule your next appointment, contact us at our Albuquerque at (505) 881-1159.

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Showing Early Signs of Gingivitis? What to Do?

Periodontal Disease Albuquerque, NMGingivitis or gum disease is one of the most common oral conditions that Dr. Steven Holbrook sees patients for. Caused by plaque build-up along the gum line, gum disease can cause things like tender gums, swollen gums, bleeding gums, or even gums that have started to recede. If you have started to experience any of these symptoms, what steps should you take?

Come Into our Office

The first thing you should do if you start experiencing any swollen, tender, bleeding or receding gums is to schedule an appointment with Dr. Steven Holbrook. The only way to cure gum disease is to get your teeth professionally cleaned. Depending on how advanced your gum disease will help Dr. Holbrook determine what treatment will work best for you. Typically, if gum disease is caught early on, it can be treated with a thorough cleaning to help get rid of the excess plaque. If, however, your gum disease is a little more advanced, than we may recommend another procedure.

Make Sure You Floss

One of the leading causes of patients who have extra plaque build-up is a lack of flossing. Next to brushing, flossing your teeth is one of the best things you can do for your overall oral health. If you can’t get onboard with regular dental floss, then consider investing in a water flosser. Water flossers work by using pressurized water to help get rid of excess food and tartar from your teeth.

Drink More Water

If you are a big soda drinker, then you aren’t doing your teeth any service. In fact, soda is filled with enough sugar to cause not only an additional plaque on your teeth but cavities as well. Try replacing your daily soda intake with water instead. Water isn’t just better for your teeth because it’s sugar-free, but it can also help get rid of germs and bacteria on your teeth after you eat.

Schedule a Consultation

As long as it’s caught early on, gum disease is fairly easy to manage. Schedule your next dental cleaning with Dr. Steven Holbrook at our Albuquerque office today: (505) 881-1159.

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Why Gum Disease Doesn’t Have to Be That Scary

Why Gum Disease Doesn’t Have to Be That Scary | Albuquerque, NMIf you have just been diagnosed with gum disease, a world of different things may be going through your mind— a lot of them may even be the worst case scenario. However, depending on how severe your gum disease is, it may not be too much to stress over.

As a condition that affects almost half of the adult population in the United States, gum disease can be reversible if it is caught early on. Let’s take a closer look at the not-so-scary side of this disease.

A Cleaning May Do the Trick

At early stages of gum disease, a thorough cleaning may do the trick. Unlike a traditional dental cleaning that can go by relatively fast, a thorough gum cleaning may take a little bit longer. During this cleaning, the goal of Dr. Steven Holbrook will be to clean the teeth and all along the gumline to get rid of harmful plaque and tartar build-up. In many cases, a thorough cleaning will be enough.

Gum Disease Prevention Tips

In addition to getting a thorough dental cleaning, we also recommend that you take a few tips home with you including consistent brushing and flossing. Brushing and flossing after every meal is the best way to prevent cavities and gum disease. If your gums are a little too sensitive to the touch when it comes to traditional dental floss, invest in a water flosser like a WaterPik instead. Water flossers use pressurized water to massage the gums and get rid of food and plaque in between your teeth.

Even though gum disease isn’t something you’d hoped to add to your resume, if it’s caught and treated early on, it shouldn’t be much to worry about.

Schedule a Consultation

To learn more about gum disease prevention or to schedule your next cleaning, contact our Albuquerque office today (505) 881-1159.

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The 411 on Periodontal Disease

Periodontal Disease Albuquerque, NMSimilar to how you wouldn’t know exactly what you were looking at under the hood of a car unless you are a mechanic, chances are that you aren’t exactly an expert on the inner workings of your mouth and oral health— especially when it comes to periodontal disease. As a disease that affects, nearly 65 million Americans, however, periodontal disease is something that doesn’t hurt to know about.

It’s Connected to Other Diseases

According to Perio.org, studies indicate that periodontal disease is linked to a variety of diseases including diabetes, heart disease, and even rheumatoid arthritis. If you have been diagnosed with one of these conditions, make sure that you are getting regular dental cleanings and examinations.

Smoking Puts You At Risk

If you’re looking for yet another reason to give up your nicotine addiction, here it is. Smoking not only puts you at risk for developing lung cancer and oral cancer, but it also puts you at a greater risk of developing periodontitis. By slowing down your body’s ability to heal itself, cigarette smoke can lead to a variety of different oral conditions.

It Can Leave You Toothless

The good news is that most patients catch their periodontal disease in the early stages when it’s extremely manageable and easy to treat. If, however, you can’t remember the last time you got your teeth cleaned and your periodontal disease has advanced to periodontitis, it puts you at a greater risk of suffering from bone and even tooth loss.

Periodontal disease is a very common oral condition that primarily affects adults over the age of 30. Luckily, by getting regular cleanings and examinations, and with the proper treatment, Dr. Steven Holbrook will help prevent it from getting worse. Schedule your next appointment with our Albuquerque office today!

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Think You Have Periodontal Disease? How to Be Properly Diagnosed

Think You Have Periodontal Disease? How to Be Properly Diagnosed | Steven E. Holbrook, DMD | Albuquerque, NMAccording to the ADA, brushing your teeth and flossing are two of the most important things for your oral health. If you tender or bleeding gums, you may immediately think that you have periodontal disease. As one of the most common oral conditions, studies show that nearly 50% of the American adult population suffers from some form of periodontal disease. However, just because you have bleeding or sensitive gums, it doesn’t mean that you suffer from periodontal disease. In fact, hormones and stress alone can cause an increase in blood flow to the mouth. This can result in bleeding, swollen, and tender gums.

As a part of any routine dental examination, your dentist or hygienist will perform a periodontal examination.

What Is a Periodontal Examination?

When you’re sitting in the dentist chair with a hand or two in your mouth, the last thing you’re able to focus on is what procedure they are doing and why. A periodontal exam should be done every six months to analyze pocket depths, inflammation, tooth mobility, and the amount of bleeding from your gums to make a proper diagnosis.

During your examination, a small periodontal probe is used to gently measure the space between the tooth and gums. If your gums are healthy, the space between your tooth and gums will measure at 3mm or less and won’t bleed. If the probe measures an area that’s larger than 3mm, you may be diagnosed with a form of periodontal disease.

There are three stages of periodontal disease including gingivitis, periodontitis, and advanced periodontitis. Luckily, during each of these three stages, Dr. Steven Holbrook can treat them and get your mouth on the road toward recovery.

Schedule a Consultation

To learn more about periodontal disease or schedule your next dental cleaning with Dr. Holbrook call (505) 881-1159

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