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Oral Health Awareness Month

Did you know over 48,000 people in the United States are diagnosed with oral cancer yearly? Oral cancer is an aggressive form of cancer. Proper diagnosis early on allows a patient plenty of treatment methods to correctly treat oral cancer. April is oral health awareness month and it’s the perfect time to visit Arizona Periodontal Group for your oral cancer screening. Early detection of oral cancer can be life-saving. Here are some important things you need to know about oral cancer.

Risk Factors for Oral Cancer

Heavy alcohol consumption, tobacco use, and infection with the human papillomavirus (HPV) increase the risk of oral cancer. Reducing the consumption of alcohol and tobacco can aid in decreasing the risk of oral cancer and other health issues. If you are concerned about oral cancer, it is important to contact your dentist right away. Here are some of the common symptoms that indicate oral cancer:

  • Bleeding sores in the mouth or sores that do not heal
  • Hard spots or lumps in the mouth
  • Crusted or roughened areas
  • Pain, tenderness, and numbness in the mouth
  • Alignment changes

Early Detection Increases Survival Rates

When dental patients undergo early screenings for oral cancer, survival rates increase from 80 to 90 percent. The American Dental Association recommends dental patients receive two routine dental examinations yearly to aid in the prevention of oral cancer. Routine dental cleanings and examinations are the first line of defense in identifying warning signs of oral cancer.  

What to Expect During an Oral Cancer Screening

Oral cancer is typically diagnosed during a dental examination. A visual inspection of the mouth, head, and neck are performed by the dentist. The dentist will feel for lumps and can use technology to search for suspicious cells. Once diagnosed with oral cancer, patients will need proper treatment for their condition. Some patients will need surgery while others will need radiation or a combination of both. Early diagnosis and treatment is essential to increase survival rates.

Preventing Oral Cancer

Visiting your dentist twice a year for cleanings and examinations can go a long way in the prevention of oral cancer. Dental patients can help to prevent oral cancer by doing periodic self-examinations of the neck, face, cheeks, and jaw to look for problems. If your health history shows a risk of cancer, it is important to contact your dentist immediately to schedule an examination. To learn more about oral cancer and to schedule your examination with Dr Trujillo, call our office today.

Sensitive Teeth Treatment In Phoenix, AZ

 

Teeth sensitivity is found in 12% of American adults typically between the ages of 18 and 40. This sensitivity can be brief or intense and is caused when dentin, or the internal part of a tooth, is exposed to hot, cold, acidic, tactile, or sweet substances.  In recent years, there has been an increase in teeth sensitivity among younger patients due to excessive consumption of sugary drinks and frequent unsupervised use of teeth whitening products.

Young woman suffering from toothache

Tooth sensitivity can signal the beginning stages of gum disease if left untreated. There are several options to decreasing tooth sensitivity depending on the cause, which include using desensitizing toothpaste, surgical gum graft, a root canal, or dental bonding. Here we’ll focus on a popular option: fluoride treatments.

If you use desensitizing toothpaste and it does not relieve teeth sensitivity, an in office topical fluoride treatment may be a better option to consider. If it is major tooth sensitivity, Dr. Trujillo, would opt for a fluoride varnish, which is a highly concentrated form of fluoride that is gently rubbed on the surface of the tooth. It may be applied to the tooth enamel, dentin, or cementum to help prevent decay. It also helps to remineralize the tooth surface and treats teeth sensitivity.

Fluoride varnish can be applied quickly and easily. It has a sticky consistency, allowing it to adhere to the tooth’s surface for several hours. It is officially recognized by the Food and Drug Administration as a desensitizing treatment. Keep in mind though, that due to the color of fluoride varnishes, it might cause temporary discoloration. As the varnish wears away with eating and brushing, the tint will fade.

Another option is fluoride gel or foam that is professionally applied by Dr. Trujillo. With this option, the foam or gel is put in a mouth tray. You will then sit with the tray in your mouth for 3-5 minutes to allow your teeth to be immersed in a high concentration of fluoride. This brief treatment will strengthen dentin and tooth enamel, thus diminishing tooth sensitivity.

Remember that there are several at home measures you can take to stop tooth sensitivity from the start. First, use a very soft bristled toothbrush and a low abrasive toothpaste. There are toothpastes specifically formulated to help soothe nerve endings in teeth. Be sure to brush a full 2 minutes, but do not over brush or push too hard. Also, your dentist may provide you with a special toothpaste that contains a high concentration of fluoride that will assist with diminishing tooth sensitivity.

If you have very sensitive teeth, and need to get treatment done then schedule an appointment with AZ Perio Group in Phoenix. If you are experiencing slight or severe tooth sensitivity, don’t hesitate to call and schedule a consultation. Let Dr. Trujillo help you relive your teeth sensitivity and smile back to normal! 

Arizona Periodontal Group Offers the Pinhole Surgical Technique!

If you are an aggressive brusher or have suffered injuries to your mouth, you might be living with gum recession, a sometimes painful, annoying issue that can eventually affect the stability of your teeth. Gum recession has a wide range of causes, like what was mentioned above, along with genetics and taking certain medications. However, no matter what the cause the result is the same: extreme discomfort and an unattractive smile. Fortunately, modern dental techniques are incredibly effective at treating gum recession.

Arizona Periodontal Group Offers the Pinhole Surgical Technique!

Pinhole Surgical Technique Phoenix, Before and After

Older procedures for treating gum recession included gum grafting, where the graft is harvested from elsewhere in the mouth and sewn into place to cover where the gum recession is. Unfortunately, this procedure can be incredibly time intensive and difficult to recover from, which is why Dr. Trujillo, a phoenix periodontists, prefers the Pinhole Surgical technique, invented by Dr. John Chao, DDS, MADG.

Pinhole surgery involves moving the gum tissue down from the inside through a very small incision about the size of a pinhole. Using proprietary tools, periodontists push the gum tissue downwards to cover root exposure, and then place tiny strips of collagen into the tunnel to hold the repair in place. Dr. Trujillo has received advanced training to offer pinhole surgery to his patients, helping his patients have a healthier smile from the benefits of this treatment.

The Powerful Benefits of Pinhole Surgery

Faster Treatment, Fewer Visits

The pinhole surgical technique can be used to treat as many as 12 teeth at a time, speeding treatment and eliminating the need for multiple visits to treat gum recession.

No Stitches

The incision made during pinhole surgery is so small that it doesn’t require stitches, which makes recovery a lot easier. Also, since Dr. Trujillo won’t have to remove tissue from elsewhere in the mouth to perform a gum graft, patients won’t have to take care of multiple healing sites.

Simple Recovery

Pinhole surgery is so minimally invasive that most people can return to normal eating, drinking, and activities that day after treatment.

Instant, Long Lasting Results

Pinhole surgery is so effective that the cosmetic results are immediate, and they last for years. Patients enjoy teeth that are framed with healthy, smooth gum tissue and can enjoy a more comfortable smile right away.

Is Pinhole Surgery Right for You?

If you suffer with gum recession, schedule an appointment with Dr. Trujillo to see if the pinhole surgical technique is right for you. This innovative periodontal treatment has helped millions of people to enjoy a beautiful, pain-free smile, and it can help you too.

Twice the Risk of Heart Disease If You Have Periodontal Disease

Most people realize that gingivitis is an uncomfortable and embarrassing condition, causing problems like persistent bad breath, gum recession, and even tooth loss. However, more and more studies have tied periodontal disease with serious systemic illnesses, which is why every patient should understand their risk and meet with their periodontist in Phoenix at least once a year for a comprehensive periodontal exam.

Periodontal Disease is Tied To Heart Disease

Young woman suffering from toothache

Although scientists have long suspected the link between periodontal disease and heart problems, a new study conducted by the Department of Periodontology at the University of Amsterdam found a significant link between advanced cardiovascular diseases and periodontists. In the study, 95% of the patients with periodontists also suffered from some kind of advanced cardiovascular illness, regardless of their age, gender, and socio-economic status.

These conclusive results show just how powerful the oral bacteria that colonize in your mouth can be. When plaque and tartar are allowed to sit on the teeth, they provide a readily accessible food source for bacteria, which create toxins as they grow and multiply. Over time, these bacteria invade deeper under the gum tissue, eventually leaching into the bloodstream and traveling throughout the body. Periodontal disease is linked with inflammation, which can also contribute to cardiovascular illnesses like heart attacks and strokes.   

Treatments for Periodontal Disease

Fortunately, every stage of periodontal disease is treatable, even if you have already lost teeth or suffered from bone loss. The first step in treating periodontal disease is eradicating oral bacteria from the mouth and within the gingival pockets. To do this, your Phoenix Periodontist will start by talking with you about your oral hygiene routine, and how to clean your teeth more effectively. Early gingivitis can usually be completely reversed by making changes at home.

If you have moderate to severe periodontal disease, your condition can be treated by pocket reduction surgery, scaling and planing, or LANAP. LANAP, which stands for Laser Assisted New Attachment Procedure, is a cutting-edge, minimally invasive gum disease treatment that helps to remove oral bacteria from the gingival pockets. The procedure uses a small periodontal probe that emits pulses of light that kill bacteria, while leaving healthy tissues intact—and helping the area to heal.

Make An Appointment Today

If your gums are swollen, red, tend to bleed easily, or you suffer from bad breath, make an appointment with Dr. Trujillo today. With great new technologies and years of experience, this dedicated periodontist can help you to restore your smile.

Merry Christmas from the Arizona Periodontal Group

Christmas Eve SceneThe holidays are one of our favorite times of the year here at Arizona Periodontal Group, and we want to take this opportunity to thank our incredible staff and loyal patients. We wouldn’t be the Phoenix periodontal practice that we are today without all of the love and support the community has offered us over the years.

We want to wish all of our treasured clients and employees a very Merry Christmas. We hope that you will be able to spend time with your family, enjoy a little extra sleep, and share fun surprises with the people you love.

Preventing Gum Disease this Holiday Season

Christmas is notorious for yummy treats and candies galore, which is why we also want to encourage all our patients to look after your oral health this holiday season. Gum disease is a very real problem that affects over half of all adults in the United States, and new research has even tied periodontal disease to other serious illnesses.

Fortunately, you can avoid gum disease and keep your teeth comfortable and healthy by doing what you can to follow these holiday dental health tips:

Start with a Periodontal Exam

To avoid dental emergencies during the holidays, begin your vacation with a periodontal exam. Comprehensive Periodontal Exams, also known as CPE’s, are recommended once a year to keep the teeth and gums free of disease. During these routine exams, Dr. Trujillo or Dr. Sanders will examine your teeth and gums for signs of gum disease, prior decay, and infections so we can treat the problems proactively.

Don’t Snack Between Meals

When you eat, the simple sugars in your meal feed the oral bacteria that live in your mouth, prompting them to produce acids. These “acid attacks” occur for as long as 20 minutes after you eat, which is why snacking between meals is so damaging to your smile–it’s a whole extra 20-minute acid exposure session every time you munch. To prevent problems, focus on eating at mealtimes, swishing your mouth with water after meals to dilute acids, and then avoiding the urge to snack.

Avoid Hard or Heavily Pigmented Foods

Try to avoid hard foods that could damage prior dental work, or pigmented foods that could leave behind unsightly staining. If possible, stay away from nuts in the shell, punch, pomegranate seeds, and unpopped popcorn kernels.

If you do encounter any kind of dental or periodontal emergency over the holidays, please don’t hesitate to contact our office. We’ll do everything we can to get you the help that you need as soon as possible.

Merry Christmas!

Dr. Ariel Trujillo
Dr. Stuart Sanders

Start your day with a beautiful smile.

When you visit our office, your oral health is our top priority. Dr. Trujillo and his entire team is dedicated to providing you with the personalized, gentle care that you deserve.