Posted by & filed under Dental Articles.

are you a mouth breather?

Breathing out of your mouth may not seem like a huge problem, but in terms of oral health and facial development in children, mouth breathing can create some concerns for your dentist in Memphis.

Signs and Symptoms

Before we discuss how mouth breathing can negatively affect your oral health, it’s important to mention some of the signs and symptoms of this potentially dangerous habit since many mouth breathers don’t even realize they’re doing it until serious issues develop. Some common signs and symptoms of being a mouth breather include:

  • Dry lips
  • Crowded teeth
  • Snoring and open mouth while sleeping
  • Increased number of airway infections including sinus, ear, colds
  • Chronic bad breath

If you’re experiencing any of these problems, or if you know you are a mouth breather, call our dental office in Memphis. We will work with you to fix the problem and get you back to health.

Breathing out of the mouth is usually caused by Chronic nasal obstruction (CNO). When your body can’t get enough oxygen by breathing through your nose, it automatically resorts the only other thing that can supply your body with the oxygen it needs – your mouth.

This may lead to many oral health problems. Mouth breathing can quickly dry out the mouth and decrease saliva production. Saliva is extremely important for neutralizing acid and helping to wash away bacteria, without it, the chance of tooth decay and cavities increases. A dry mouth can also lead to bad breath and other serious concerns.

Dry mouth is one of the causes of gum disease, a dangerous oral health problem that can create health issues throughout your body including stroke, heart disease, and heart attacks. In children, breathing from the mouth may lead to poor sleep, lower oxygen concentration in the blood, and facial deformities.

Since humans are designed to breathe through their noses, when they try to breathe out of their mouths, their posture has to change in order to keep the airway open. This may cause developmental problems, especially in children who are prone to mouth breathing. When a child is breathing from his or her mouth, they probably won’t identify a problem since it is their norm. However, if left undiagnosed and untreated, the face can begin to grow long and narrow, the nose can become flat and the nostrils small, and the lips can be thin on top and quite pouty on the bottom. This, in addition to the other negative effects to oral health, shows that mouth breathing is a whole body problem and should be treated as early as possible.

At our dental office in Memphis, we’re trained to look for the signs and symptoms of mouth breathing and are often the first to notice a potential problem. This makes regular appointments with us even more important. If we catch mouth breathing early, we can determine what’s causing it and how to fix it to prevent other problems later on.

Serving patients in Memphis, Germantown, and Cordova.

Posted by & filed under Dental Articles.

The Truth Behind the Pre-Appointment Antibiotic In recent years, using antibiotics as a pre-appointment preventive tool for fighting infection was a common recommendation for dental patients with heart disease. However, with more research evidence emerging, the American Heart Association has revised the recommendations for using antibiotics prior to appointments with your dentist in Memphis.

It used to be common for a heart patient to take antibiotics before any dental appointment, including cleanings, to lower the chance of infection spreading into the heart, which may cause serious problems. It was widely believed that the bacteria in the mouth could enter the bloodstream during a dental procedure and lead to infection. However, there was no scientific evidence to support a link between dental treatments and infection.

Newer studies have shown that the overuse of antibiotics as a precaution to infection could actually do more harm than good. In fact, the new studies illustrate the fact that the risks of taking preventive antibiotics seriously outweigh the benefits. Overprescribing antibiotics could lead to the development of resistant bacteria, which means the antibiotics are ineffective at keeping infection at bay and the bacteria is left to thrive, increasing the possibility for a more serious infection. In light of the new studies, dentists have stopped prescribing preventive antibiotics as much.

Despite fewer patients taking precautionary antibiotics, there are still certain conditions where use of antibiotics is appropriate. These conditions include:

  • Artificial heart valves
  • A history of Infective Endocarditis
  • Bicuspid valve disease
  • Calcified aortic stenosis
  • Certain congenital heart conditions

No matter if your diagnosis includes one of the above conditions, or if you’re a patient with a different heart condition, we encourage you to always get advice from your cardiologist before your appointment with your Memphis dentist to see if taking an antibiotic is right for you.

One of the best ways to keep bacteria away and infection from occurring is always to make sure you brush twice a day and floss at least once a day. Additionally, regular appointments at our dental office in Memphis can ensure that your mouth is healthy and at a low risk for developing infection.

Serving patients in Memphis, Germantown, and Cordova.

Posted by & filed under Dental Articles.

We would like to welcome our newest staff member Lindsey Little to our team. Lindsey was born and raised in Memphis. She graduated from the University of Memphis and is a huge Tigers fan. Lindsey loves going to sporting events and spending time with her friends and family.

A huge congratulations to the new Mrs Jenna Kasser. Our lovely hygienist Jenna recently got married to her high school sweetheart Jake. The wedding ceremony was beautiful, followed by an evening of dancing, laughter and great food!

Now to the dentistry…..For all those who are interested in a straighter smile, we are now providing Six Month Smiles and Clear Correct in addition to Invisalign. These are great options for creating a beautiful, straight smile without wearing metal braces!

Our Doctors are always dedicated to provide the best dental care with the latest techniques. For our nervous patients, sedation dentistry continues to be an invaluable tool and we are excited to announce that we will have the option of placing implants to replace missing teeth for our patients, in the near future!

Posted by & filed under Dental Articles.

With your busy schedule, finding the time to get to the dentist for a check-up is hard enough. But if you need a dental crown, you’re going to have to find the time for two dental appointments.

Until now. CEREC technology has made the one-appointment crowns at the Memphis dental practice of Avery and Meadows a reality.

CEREC stands for Chairside Economical Restoration of Esthetic Ceramics, and it’s changing the way we practice dentistry.

Before CEREC, if you had a damaged or decayed tooth that needed a crown, you had to go the dentist twice. During the first appointment, the tooth was prepared, you had to have an impression made of the tooth and then you were given a temporary crown. The dentist then sent your molds to a lab to have the permanent crown fabricated. Once the final crown was sent back to the dentist, you returned to have it cemented onto your tooth. That meant two dental visits. Two Novocain shots. And a lot of hassle.

With CEREC, everything is done in one appointment. First, CEREC Technology takes a precise digital image of your tooth (no gagging on messy mouth molds!). Through Computer Aided Design (CAD), CEREC uses the digital image to create your custom restoration. A high-speed diamond bur mills the restoration out of solid ceramic to meet your unique specifications. Once the restoration is complete, it is bonded to the tooth using a state-of-the-art adhesive.

With CEREC, there’s fewer shots needed, less drilling required, no messy impressions and no second appointment. It makes the process of getting a crown much easier, convenient and precise.

Learn more about dental crowns or CEREC technology in Memphis.

Posted by & filed under Periodontal Disease.

We all know that regular visits to the dentist for a check-up and cleaning can keep your teeth and gums healthy. But taking proper care of your gums can do more than prevent tooth loss. It may also save your life. Yes, your life.

Dentists have long suspected a link between periodontal disease and serious health issues. They have recently been proven correct.

Studies published in the New England Journal of Medicine and the Journal of Periodontology report that the inflammatory effects from periodontal disease can cause bacterial byproducts to enter the bloodstream and trigger the liver to make proteins such as C-reactive protein.

This protein is one of the main markers in all kinds of systemic inflammation that can increase the risk of blood clots and, according to a new study from Harvard, pancreatic cancer. The Harvard study shows that men with gum disease were 63 percent more likely to develop pancreatic cancer when compared to those with no periodontal problems.

Studies have shown that periodontal disease can also lead to an increased risk for:

  • Heart Disease
  • Stroke
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Certain Cancers
  • Complications in controlling blood sugar levels in diabetes
  • Premature Birth
  • Low Birth-Weight Babies
  • and more

Unfortunately, you can have periodontal disease and not even know it. Symptoms include swollen gums, gums that bleed when you brush or floss, loose teeth, receding gum line and halitosis, but sometimes there aren’t any symptoms at all.

The disease is prevalent; more than 85 percent of people in the United States have some level of periodontal disease.

But there is good news. Periodontal disease is treatable, and in many cases, when caught early, it’s reversible. With modern technology and advanced periodontal therapy, including dental lasers, ultrasonic scalers and antibiotics, treatment is more gentle, comfortable and effective than ever before.

It’s easy to keep periodontal disease at bay; simply visit the Memphis dental office of Avery and Meadows for your regular check-ups and cleanings. Brush and floss daily at home and use an oral irrigator.

Don’t risk your smile. Or your health. Come see us soon!

Posted by & filed under Cosmetic Dentistry.

Do you have discolored or gapped teeth? Are your teeth chipped, worn or crooked? The Memphis cosmetic dentists at Avery and Meadows can quickly, comfortably and beautifully correct all of these cosmetic problems. Using either cosmetic dental bonding or porcelain veneers, they can return your smile to a natural, attractive appearance.

The procedure for cosmetic dental bonding is simple. First composite is applied to your tooth, sculpted into shape and hardened with a special light. Then it’s polished to a natural gleam that matches your tooth color perfectly. This procedure can usually be completed in one day and is ideal for closing gaps between teeth, whitening a stained tooth, or repairing a chipped tooth.

Porcelain veneers take a bit longer. Porcelain veneers are the cosmetic dentist’s most valuable tool. They can do just about anything, from repairing a chipped or worn tooth to restoring teeth to their optimal length, width, color and size. They can even be used to straighten crooked teeth without the use of traditional braces.

Porcelain veneers are thin sheets of ceramic that bond directly to the front surfaces of the teeth. When bonded to the teeth, the ultra-thin porcelain veneers are virtually undetectable and highly resistant to coffee, tea or other staining agents. For strength and appearance, their resemblance to healthy, white tooth enamel is unsurpassed by other restorative options. They can transform any smile to one that is straight, white and beautiful.

Learn about all the cosmetic enhancements made possible with bonding and veneers.

If you would like to schedule a smile consultation with the Memphis cosmetic dentists at Avery and Meadows, call 901-452-0040.