Posted in dental health, Gum disease, Periodontist in Virginia Beach

Why Sort Your Kid’s Halloween Candy

When you think of October, what comes to mind? Fall, pumpkins, or Halloween… Did you know that its National Dental Hygiene Month? It was created to increase awareness of the importance of oral care to your mouth and body.

The Daily 4

  • Brushing
  • Flossing
  • Rinsing
  • Chewing

Brushing

You’ve heard it before, brush twice a day. For best results, use a soft or ultra-soft bristled toothbrush, and use a rotational stroke, pushing the gum onto the teeth (please look at the demo on my website – much easier to understand).  Do NOT do circles or scrubbing or lateral motions with the brush – this will damage the gum around your teeth or implants.

Flossing

How important is flossing? Brushing your teeth doesn’t completely clean your teeth. Flossing removes about 65% of plaque from your teeth, brushing about 35%.  Do both carefully, and you can remove 100%!  To be really effective, brush first, then floss, then brush again, always using correct technique.  Don’t do anything else when flossing or brushing – look in the mirror to make sure that you are doing it correctly. Again, I ask that you look at flossing and brushing videos on my website.

Rinsing

Do you use mouthwash? It is no replacement for actually removing plaque with floss and brushing, but rinsing with any fluid is always beneficial.  No OTC mouthwash is superior to simple salt water rinses, but it tends to taste better.  If you use a rinse, fluoride is good, but avoid the tartar control rinses (and toothpaste).

Chewing

Chewing? Yeah, you’re probably thinking “how does that help my teeth?” Chewing sugar-free gum after snacks or meals stimulates saliva glands that help clean your teeth.

Also, this month is for giving our hygienists a special shout out! Every day they work hard to make our smiles healthy. Share your healthy smile, tag us and use #DentalHygieneMonth

Trick or TreatWith Halloween around the corner, you might be spooked on how to maintain your healthy smile. Of course, by now you know that candy isn’t good for your teeth. That doesn’t mean don’t have any, remember moderation is key! What are the chances of people giving out sugar-free candies?  Unlikely due to tradition, and some would say that no candy takes the fun out of trick-or-treating. Dr. Rogge gives packages of dry-roasted nuts and balloons and puzzles to kids on Halloween, and has never received one complaint!  In fact, he has had children return to get more treats and has received compliments from parents.  Some sugary candies are worse than others. You can separate the candy into piles to limit sugar intake.

Gummy candy sticks to the teeth longer, and it increases the risk for developing a cavity.  Some examples are taffy, gummy bears, or gummy worms. Sour candies are a double shock to your teeth, they have a lot of sugar and are highly acidic.

The number one concern for hard candy is biting into it breaking or damaging your teeth. Candy in your mouth for a long time can also bring more sugar into your mouth. Enjoy the Halloween treats in “bursts”, then brush well afterward.  Try to limit the amount of time sugar is in your mouth – the longer sugar and acid are in your mouth, the more cavities can occur.

Surprisingly, dark chocolate is a better choice since it has less sugar and dissolves quickly. It also contains some calcium, a beneficial nutrient.  Also, powdery candy is not sticky and dissolves quickly giving bacteria less time to cling to teeth.

Dental Hygiene MonthEven though the Halloween season is coming to an end, taking proper care of your teeth is never ending! Go through your kid’s pile of candy and make sure they are eating in moderation.  Parents should avoid eating too much of the leftover candy as well – we all know how tempting candy can be!

Be sure to always brush twice a day, floss, rinse, and keep sugary snacks to a minimum. To celebrate National Dental Hygiene Month with us, schedule your dental checkups today!

Rod M. Rogge, DDS

762 Independence Blvd., Ste. 500
Virginia Beach, VA 23455 (map)
(757) 333-7444

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Posted in Gum disease, Periodontics, Periodontist in Virginia Beach

4 Risk Factors of Gum Disease

Have you ever had something caught in your teeth for days? It’s likely because it was lodged deep between a tooth and your gums. That gum tissue is what keeps our chompers in place. There are three stages of gum disease. They’re all are treatable and it starts with an infection of bacteria under the gum line.

gingivitis_2The mild form of gum disease is Gingivitis. This is where plaque and other byproducts irritate the gums. It makes them swollen, tender, and more likely to bleed. Periodontitis is stage two. The gum tissue starts deteriorating as it detaches from the teeth forming pockets around the roots. These pockets can have a depth up to 7 millimeters. Finally, Advanced Periodontitis can set in. Tooth pockets get deeper as the severe gum recession leads to bone loss impacting your total well-being. Depending on how quickly and destructive your case is determines if surgical or non-surgical treatment is the best option for you.

Common Risk Factors of Periodontal Disease

  • Genetics – it’s hereditary and some of us are just unlucky! While you may be more susceptible to periodontitis, having a good oral hygiene routine with regular dental visits can help your smile stay healthy. Talk to us about finding the right balance for your needs.
  • Health – underlying medical conditions like diabetes and Crohn’s disease, as well as lowered immunity from illnesses and treatments often affect gum tissue. Medications, hormonal changes and obesity are also culprits and should be discussed.
  • Bad Habits – chewing on ice, not brushing or flossing daily and using tobacco are the most common behavior changes we encourage you to ditch. However, substance abuse and a diet lacking in vitamin C will also impact your smile.
  • Stress – it’s inevitable. But keep an eye on exactly how much it’s weighing you down. High levels or chronic stress can lead to poor hygiene habits. Anxiety can also lower your immune system from effectively fighting off bacteria that causes gingivitis (stage 1).

When to Seek Help

Common red flags of gum disease include:

  • Bleeding gums
  • Swollen or tender gums
  • Gums look bright red
  • Teeth wiggle

There’s no home remedy to cure gum disease. If not stopped quickly, serious damage to your gum and supporting bone will require much more aggressive treatment to save your teeth. Only professional treatment can help, so call today for a consultation (757) 333-7444.

Rod M. Rogge, DDS
762 Independence Blvd., Ste. 500
Virginia Beach, VA 23455 (map)
(757) 333-7444

Posted in Periodontist in Virginia Beach

Dental X-Rays and Your Health

X-rays, otherwise known as dental radiographs, are a staple of quality dental care. While x-rays bring undeniable advantages when it comes to identifying and diagnosing potential health issues, some may harbor reservations regarding the risks of exposure to radiation.  Fortunately we can ease those concerns and serve as a resource for understanding radiography, so you can feel confident receiving excellent care.

Why Do I Need Dental X-Rays

X-rays are an essential tool in the dental community (and medical community at large) as they provide valuable insights that we would not otherwise be able to access with visual inspection alone. Our team, with the help of x-rays, is able to see between, inside, and under your teeth. In doing so, we have the ability to check a variety of important health factors. This includes the presence of cavities, the health of your tooth roots, the bone structure surrounding the tooth, the status of developing teeth, the health of your jaw bone, and many more conditions that we would not otherwise be able to monitor. X-rays are instrumental when there is a known issue; with them, we are better able to understand the full scope of the situation and design an appropriate treatment plan for the beauty and health of your smile.

Radiation Exposure from X-Rays

Radiography technology has come a long way, and your exposure to radiation is negligible amounts in terms of risk – in fact, the risk you assume by forgoing x-rays can create long-term damage that could otherwise have been identified and treated. We understand some patients have concerns about radiation exposure, and it’s important to understand we are all consistently exposed to radiation each and every day. It’s high levels of exposure that are the true cause for concern. Our x-ray machines operate on a micro-scale that simply don’t compare. We assure you receiving x-rays is one of the single most beneficial processes capable of saving your health by identifying small problems before they progress into serious conditions.

If you have any unaddressed concerns, in regards to x-rays or other dental procedures, our knowledgeable staff is happy to share answers with you. We want you to feel relaxed in our office, and confident that you are receiving the best care possible!

Rod M. Rogge, DDS
762 Independence Blvd., Ste. 500
Virginia Beach, VA 23455 (map)
(757) 333-7444

Posted in Periodontist in Virginia Beach

Tooth Extractions Due to Dental Decay

In even the healthiest of mouths, there is a constant battle between good and evil – well, a constant battle between your teeth and harmful bacteria, which is virtually the same. Every time you eat, particles and bacteria are introduced into your oral ecosystem. The bacteria are fueled by sugars and other substances, which then produce acids that attack the enamel of your teeth. Fortunately, proper dental care combined with your mouth’s natural defenses can stave off the majority of would-be damage. However, we regularly see cases where the damage progresses irreversibly – usually due to poor oral care – and a tooth extraction becomes necessary.

Tooth Anatomy

Decay is treatable at any stage, but neglected for long enough may result in a tooth (or teeth) that cannot be saved. At this point treatment usually involves removal. It’s important to note that a lack of pain doesn’t mean a lack of damage. Once you’re in pain, you’ve already passed several thresholds of treatable damage. Additionally, the first layer destroyed by decay is the outer enamel. Enamel is not living and very hard – you won’t feel any pain until it reaches the inner layers. However, being that the inner layer of dentin is softer, decay will spread faster through it than the enamel. Ultimately, the decay will reach the living tissues inside your tooth; at this point, you may be able to undergo root canal therapy, or you may require an extraction.

Having a Tooth Pulled

The process of an extraction isn’t scary – we will ensure you’re comfortable with the treatment plan, and work with you from start to finish. In fact, the purpose of the extraction is to relieve pain – once the decayed tooth is gone, your gum tissue will return to a healthy, uninfected state – as long as proper oral care is consistently practiced.

Extractions are important when they become necessary because dental decay is the presence of bacteria and infection inside a tooth. This can severely compromise your health, as untreated oral infections can lead to an increased risk of heart disease. In rare cases the infection can reach vital organs and become life-threatening. Our goal is to keep all of our patients healthy, from preventative care to restorative dental treatment. We may be doctors of teeth, but being healthy all over is a pretty good reason to smile, and we can help you with that.

 

Rod M. Rogge, DDS
762 Independence Blvd., Ste. 500
Virginia Beach, VA 23455 (map)
(757) 333-7444

Posted in Periodontist in Virginia Beach

Why A Hard/Soft Tissue Graft?

When it comes to the health and beauty of smiles, some patients may be candidates for tissue grafting procedures. This form of treatment is used to replace the hard or soft tissues of the mouth that have been damaged or reduced. There are both medical and cosmetic motivations for a patient to receive a tissue grafting procedure. Our goal is to educate patients on the difference between hard and soft tissue grafts, as well as the reasons they may become necessary. If you find yourself in a position where you require a tissue graft, we will communicate with you each step of the way to ensure your comfort throughout the process.

Soft Tissue Graft

Soft tissue grafts are both medical and cosmetic procedures. Medically speaking, a soft tissue graft is very effective method to repair damage done by gum recession. Gum recession can be caused a variety of ways, but most often it is the result of incorrect tooth brushing. Gum recession is a gradual process, making it difficult for the patient to notice; however, when the roots of your teeth become more exposed, they become sensitive to extreme temperatures. The increased exposure also increases your likelihood of disease or infection. Left untreated, recession can lead to loose teeth or even permanent tooth loss. From a cosmetic point of view, some individuals desire a more even or full gum line to enhance the aesthetics of their smile.

In either case, the tissue grafting procedures remain consistent. The doctor will take soft tissue from elsewhere in the mouth, most commonly the palate, and then secure it to the recipient site. There are several methods by which this can be achieved, and you will be able to talk with us about which is most suitable for your needs. When it comes to healing, your ability to drive after the procedure will depend on whether or not sedatives are administered. You will receive special instructions for your post-operative dental care, and must adhere to a specific diet in order to promote healing. The discomfort you feel post-operatively will depend on how much tissue was grafted, and how it was done. Fortunately, the gums heal relatively quickly and pain medications keep everything very manageable.

Hard Tissue Graft

A hard tissue graft is commonly known as a bone graft. Although it can sound intimidating, a bone graft can offer you very beautiful and natural results if your smile has been damaged. Bone grafts are often recommended for those who have lost teeth and are seeking to restore their smile back to full form and function with dental implants. When a tooth is lost, it starts a process of bone recession in the vacant space created. The longer a tooth replacement is not implemented, the more severe the recession. When a restorative dental implant is to be placed, it is vital that there is enough supporting bone for the artificial root. If there is not, that is when we first graft additional bone into the area.

The amount of bone grafted depends on the preexisting condition of the area; if the tooth is only recently lost, it may only be a minor amount. If it’s been allowed to deteriorate, it may require more attention. As with soft tissue grafting, the doctor will provide instructions to promote healthy healing after your procedure. With proper care and a watchful eye, you will be healed up in no time, and have an absolutely beautiful smile to show for it!

Rod M. Rogge, DDS
762 Independence Blvd., Ste. 500
Virginia Beach, VA 23455 (map)
(757) 333-7444

Posted in dental health, Periodontist in Virginia Beach

5 Reasons to See a Periodontist

Most of us are well-versed with our trips to the general dentist and why regular cleanings are an important part of health care. However, teeth and all of their relating components are complicated systems requiring the help of several specialists – no matter the issue, there is a doctor that can help you! The doctor may be your general dentist, but it could also be a specialty doctor that has extensive training on a specific aspect of your oral health. In this way, you can be confident you are always taken care of and your smile can keep on shining.

We are a periodontics practice, focusing on your periodontal health. This includes your gums and related surgical procedures. We can also replace missing teeth and perform cosmetic procedures to keep you feeling confident. When it comes to trips to our office, here are five common reasons we might see you here:

  1. Implant Placement
  2. Periodontitis Treatment
  3. Gum Lifts & Crown Lengthening
  4. Bone Grafting & Regeneration
  5. Ridge Regeneration

Implant Placement

Implant procedures are one of our primary specializations – having a missing tooth can damage a person’s confidence, but did you know it can also affect the health of their mouth? When your smile has a vacant space, gum tissue and the surrounding teeth will compete to fill it. The damage it can cause is highly preventable, so if you have a missing tooth you should let us know. It is both a cosmetic and medical procedure that we are happy to work through with you.

Periodontitis Treatment

The development of periodontitis (gum disease) is a highly treatable condition that it is important to address. The early stage, known as gingivitis, is entirely reversible with proper care and help from your general dentist. However, once the condition advances, you may need our help to restore harmony to your smile. If left untreated, extensive damage occurs that may even result in the loss of teeth – don’t let that happen, give us a call.

Gum Lifts & Crown Lengthening

Your gums play an important role in the health and aesthetics of your smile! Gum tissue can recede and require corrective treatments, or exist in excess resulting in dissatisfaction with your gummy smile. Gum recession is attributed to several things, including periodontitis or insufficient home care. Fortunately, we can remedy both conditions in our office by either grafting or lifting – don’t let your gums dictate your confidence in your smile.

Bone Grafting & Regeneration

There are a variety of situations that require a bone grafting procedure for when there is not sufficient bone remaining in the mouth, most commonly: extraction site graft, past injury, severe caries, or periodontal disease. Bone regeneration is a procedure used to prevent gum scar tissue from invading a vacant space in order to best reshape or rebuild the jaw. The use of these procedures can greatly enhance the outcome of restorative procedures, such as dental implants.

Ridge Regeneration

Ridge regeneration is a helpful procedure when it comes to the successful placement of implants or dentures. When a tooth is lost, it’s nearly impossible for the surrounding gum tissue to remain unaffected; instances like this require remedial steps to ensure the success of restorative treatments. By using ridge regeneration, we reinforce the integrity of your jawbone and achieve beautiful results with natural looking dental implants.

 

We are here to help you feel confident about the health of your smile. If you believe any of these procedures could benefit you, or if you have any other concerns about your oral health – contact our office and let us help.

 

Virginia Beach Periodontist | Dr. Rod RoggeRod M. Rogge, DDS
762 Independence Blvd., Ste. 500
Virginia Beach, VA 23455 (map)
(757) 333-7444

Posted in dental health, Office News, oral hygiene, Periodontics, Periodontist in Virginia Beach

Gum Disease and Heart Disease

Blog Title- Gum Disease

It’s your dentist’s job to tell you about the health of your mouth, and we know that can get a little dry. But did you realize your oral health may actually affect your heart health?? Although researchers are still establishing exactly how this connection works, there is a lot of evidence to suggest those with gum disease, an advanced form of gingivitis, can actually lead to an increased chance of heart attack or stroke. Although we may not know exactly why gum disease can lead to heart problems, we want our patients to know how to avoid serious health complications (spoiler alert: it has a lot to do with regular brushing and flossing!).

Given the complexity of the human body, it’s an incredibly difficult task to identify and explain direct processes of cause-and-effect; as such, we have been unsuccessful at explaining precisely why and how gum disease and heart disease are linked, but we are aware there is a connection and that it’s in the interest of our health and yours to be familiar with the long-term risks poor dental health can have on the body. Succinctly put, there are tremendous amounts of data that have demonstrated those with compromised oral health and long-term periodontal inflammation are at a significantly higher risk to develop heart disease and increase the likelihood of the individual to suffer from a heart attack or stroke.

At present, the culprits most suspected of triggering this chain reaction are bacteria and inflammation. Some researchers have suggested that due to the vascular nature of the gums, infection and bacteria below the gum line can become dislodged and enter the blood stream with disruption, which can: trigger inflammation through the body, damage blood vessels, or possibly form clots. Your blood stream is a direct line to your heart, and the bacteria associated with gum disease can easily find its way into your heart and then cause significant damage. Inflammation, on the other hand, leads to hardened arteries and makes it more difficult for blood flow to reach your heart; this additional strain can easily trigger a heart attack, particularly if you were already susceptible in the first place. Gum disease comes with a handful of standard symptoms, and inflammation is one of the most common. Left untreated, it isn’t too far a stretch to suggest the long-term implications can move beyond your oral health and affect the rest of your body’s systems.

Ultimately the relationship between gum disease and heart disease is primarily based off long-standing conditions; that is to say, if you are diagnosed with gingivitis and visit your dentist to resolve the issue, there isn’t reason to worry about suffering a heart attack. It’s when problems are allowed to progress and fester that there is cause for concern in regards to the long-term damage that may be happening in the body without receiving proper treatment and care. A study titled Prevalence of Periodontitis in Adults in the United States estimated that 47.2 percent of American adults have mild, moderate or severe periodontitis. In adults 65 and older, prevalence rates increase to 70.1 percent. It’s an easy thing to miss by yourself, and your dentist can always give you more information about your health. If you are following proper home care treatment, visiting the dentist every 6 months, and have not been informed of any serious issues by the doctor, then there is little cause for concern. As always, if you have absolutely any worries at all about the health of your gums or overall oral health, then call our office for an appointment. It’s always easier and more affordable to treat the problem before it is allowed to take hold. Keep brushing and flossing!

Rod M. Rogge, DDS

762 Independence Blvd., Ste. 500
Virginia Beach, VA 23455
(757) 333-7444