Breaking Bad Habits During a Pandemic | Elk Grove Dentist

Well, here we are – sequestered to our homes for the duration. Lots of us have learned a new hobby, cleaned their home like never before, gotten closer to family more than they’d even like. But now would also be a good time to focus on breaking some bad habits, some we’ve been too busy to think about before. Namely smoking.

Yes, it’s a stressful time and smoking is your crutch. But you have a very high chance of developing gum disease in the span of your lifetime. In fact, as a smoker, it’s twice as likely. It is actually a fairly common occurrence with most adults. It begins small – red, tender, swollen gums that may or may not occasionally bleed while during your dental hygiene routine. If caught early enough, it is completely treatable and preventable. It gets worse. Not only are you more susceptible to gum disease, but smoking can increase your risk for many other oral health problems, including:

  • Mouth pain and cavities
  • Tooth loss
  • Infected tooth root
  • Reduced ability to fight infection, including in the mouth and gums
  • Slower healing of gum tissue after oral surgery or from injury
  • Reduced effectiveness of gum disease treatments
  • Oral cancer

The good news is that the risk greatly decreases after you quit smoking. Not only are there tons of over-the-counter products that can help to kick the habit, but there are also lots of support groups (American Cancer Society chapter: 800-ACS-2345 or 800-227-2345 and the National Network of Tobacco Cessation Quitlines: 800-QUIT-NOW or 800-784-8669) available to get you through the tougher times.

Giving up smoking isn’t easy, but you’ll have the satisfaction of knowing that you’re keeping your mouth — and your entire body — healthy.

If you have questions or concerns about quitting smoking, make an appointment today with Dr. Towfighi at 916-236-3131 or visit our website at www.capitolperiodontistselkgrove.com.

Dr. Towfighi proudly serves Elk Grove and all surrounding areas.

Caring for Your Veneers | Elk Grove Dentist

When it’s time for you to get porcelain veneers, your daily oral care routine is going to change. Yes, the porcelain used to make your veneers are made to look like your teeth and have a level of durability that is similar to real teeth, but they aren’t the same and shouldn’t be treated like they are. Here are a few suggestions to make sure your veneers last as long as they possibly can.

Firstly, it all comes down to the basics. Brushing and flossing daily is not only good for your veneers but will also help to prevent future veneers. Use a nonabrasive toothpaste containing fluoride to ensure that that it won’t scratch your veneers, leaving them prone to issues like periodontitis, which can cause your gums to recede. Because your veneers are placed right at the gum line, if your gums do happen to recede, the appearance of your veneers could be compromised.

If staining is one of your main issues, staying clear from beverages like coffee, wine and tea is a great idea to keep your new teeth pearly white. Porcelain is very resistant to staining by nature, but the cement used to affix the veneers is prone to staining over time. Chipped teeth are generally caused by accidental incidents but can also be caused by biting your fingernails or munching on things like hard candy or ice.

When it comes to our bodies, taking preventative measures is always the best bet. The better we take care of ourselves, the longer we last. Same can be said for veneers.

If you have questions or concerns about veneers, make an appointment today with Dr. Towfighi at 916-236-3131 or visit our website at www.capitolperiodontistselkgrove.com.

Dr. Towfighi proudly serves Elk Grove and all surrounding areas.

Getting Familiar with Gum Disease | Elk Grove Dentist

It’s been estimated that nearly 75% of Americans have some form of gum disease in their lifetime. And while that seems like a staggering statistic, if treated early, gum disease can be reversed. In fact, your daily dental hygiene routine plays a major part in whether or not gum disease progresses. In addition to brushing, flossing and rinsing with mouthwash, a healthy diet will help you maintain healthy gums and prevent periodontal disease. These are the three stages of gum disease – gingivitis, periodontitis and advanced periodontitis. If you know how severe gum disease progresses, you may be more apt to keeping your dental hygiene thorough. So, let’s take a look at the stages of gum disease…

The first stage of gum disease is referred to as gingivitis, or the inflammation of your gums caused by plaque buildup at your gum line. If you’re not keeping up with daily brushing and flossing to remove the plaque, it produces toxins that irritate your gum tissue. This is the only stage of gum disease that can be reversed.

During periodontitis, the supporting bone and tissues structures are irreversibly damaged. Your gums will start to form pockets below your gum line, trapping plaque and food. With proper dental treatment and improved home care you can prevent further damage to your supporting bone and tissue.

Advanced periodontitis is the final stages of gum disease, where tissue structures and supporting bones are destroyed, causing your teeth to shift and loosen. This affects your bite, and if treatment cannot save your teeth, they may need to be removed.

If you have questions or concerns about gum disease prevention, make an appointment today with Dr. Towfighi at 916-236-3131 or visit our website at www.capitolperiodontistselkgrove.com.

Dr. Towfighi proudly serves Elk Grove and all surrounding areas.

Cleaning Up Your Smile for the New Year | Elk Grove Dentist

Here we are – the end of yet another year. And while 2019 has been nice, 2020 is sure to be much better. One improvement many people make is improving their health, but what about their oral health? There aren’t many people that focus on their dental health, but it should be the one on the forefront of our minds. After all, our smile is the first thing people see when they meet us. And it is also the front line of defense for our overall health.

One of the more common dental issues we develop is gum disease. This is one dental issue you do not want to leave untreated. Making sure teeth are brushed effectively for two minutes twice a day, flossed and rinsed to clean in-between your teeth every day to remove plaque. Your dentist or dental hygienist can give you advice on a home dental health care program but be aware it will include having a healthy lifestyle and stopping bad habits such as smoking. But it’s about to be a new year – now it the perfect time to make some changes. Keeping an eye on any developing issues will also help to prevent gingivitis and stop it from worsening into periodontitis.

If the gingivitis is bad, when you start cleaning effectively your gums may bleed more. This is normal. It will eventually stop. Your dentist or hygienist can also remove the tartar from around the gum line, with special tools and polish your teeth. But the key is not to depend on your dental visits. Preventative measures will not only make your checkups go smoothly, but less painful.

If you have questions or concerns about dental hygiene, make an appointment today with Dr. Towfighi at 916-236-3131 or visit our website at www.capitolperiodontistselkgrove.com.

Dr. Towfighi proudly serves Elk Grove and all surrounding areas.

Dental Tips for the Fellas | Elk Grove Dentist

The month of November designates a few things in our lives – chillier days, Thanksgiving, and the emergence of moustaches to raise awareness of men’s health issues. Because it is a known fact that men are less inclined to visit a doctor, much less their dentist, it is important to take a moment to understand that our mouths have a direct connection to other areas of our health. You don’t need to be a man to follow these tips, but since this was the month of the man, we’re going to focus on the hairier sex:

Regular dental checkups. Having regular check-ups will greatly reduce the odds of you developing gum disease. Whether you know it or not, gum disease can spread to other areas, like cardiovascular issues. Keep your appointments to ensure future dental issues aren’t on the horizon.

Daily dental care. According to the Academy of General Dentistry and the American Dental Association, men are more likely to develop periodontal (gum) disease than women, which can put you at risk for other health issues not dental-based. Brush twice daily for two minutes using a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste to reduce the odds.

Monitor your heart health. Because there is a link between periodontal and cardiovascular disease, realize that medications taken can have the reverse effect, like dry mouth. Since saliva cleans bacteria from your teeth, developing a dry mouth increases your risk for cavities and gum disease. Make sure to discuss any medications you are taking with your dental professional in case of any reactions.

If you have questions or concerns about dental hygiene, make an appointment today with Dr. Towfighi at 916-236-3131 or visit our website at www.capitolperiodontistselkgrove.com.

Dr. Towfighi proudly serves Elk Grove and all surrounding areas.

Don’t Let Halloween Ruin Your Smile | Elk Grove Dentist

Halloween Cupcakes

A dentist always braces themselves for the Halloween season. It seems as though Halloween’s sole purpose seems to be centered around sugar consumption. It should come as no surprise that the American Dental Hygienists’ Association (ADHA) celebrates National Dental Hygiene Month. We all know that the way to a healthy smile that lasts a lifetime is maintaining proper dental hygiene, so this month serves to remind the public about the importance of dental hygiene. And on this Halloween night, enjoy the season. It’s a magical time of year. But after you’ve had your fill of Halloween candy, focus on these four simple steps:

Brush your teeth twice a day. Brushing helps remove bacteria and food particles that turn into plaque over time. Brushing helps remove plaque, prevents tooth decay, and strengthens enamel.

Floss every day. While brushing can clean the surface, flossing allows you to remove food from between teeth that cannot be reached with a toothbrush.

Rinse with antimicrobial mouthwash. Mouthwash not only rinses away remaining food particles, but also helps kill bacterial colonies that cause oral health problems, such as gum disease and tooth decay.

Chew sugar-free gum. Sugar-free gum has a number of benefits – it encourages production of saliva, keeping teeth clean, and the sugar-free sweetener (Xylitol) has anti-bacterial properties, which helps fight tooth decay.

Keeping your teeth bright and healthy isn’t difficult. It just takes a few minutes a day. Use National Dental Hygiene Month to evaluate your family’s oral hygiene – be sure you’re meeting all four focus points to make your next dental checkup a pleasant one.

If you have questions or concerns about dental hygiene, make an appointment today with Dr. Towfighi at 916-236-3131 or visit our website at www.capitolperiodontistselkgrove.com.

Dr. Towfighi proudly serves Elk Grove and all surrounding areas.

Are You a Good Brusher? | Elk Grove Dentist

In order to keep our smiles in the best condition they could possibly be, we need to set some time out of our day to look after them. And since we all want to make sure we are doing our best to keep our health up, let’s take a quick look at how we can give our smiles the best care possible. After all, your mouth is the leading line of defense for our overall health. Taking care of them will help them take care of us…

First rule of thumb is to brush your teeth at least twice a day, for at least two minutes. You start the day with fresh clean breath and prevent cavity-causing bacteria from settling in your mouth while you sleep. If you don’t have a toothbrush handy between meals, rinsing your mouth will help keep bacteria from settling.

When it comes to choosing your dental equipment, the task can seem overwhelming. It is a good idea to choose a soft-bristled toothbrush, so that it is gentle on your gums. Hard-bristled versions can wear at your gums, slowly causing future periodontal issues. Choose a non-abrasive toothpaste approved by the ADA for the optimum outcome.

Now the dreaded dental task – flossing. Flossing plays a very important part in our dental routines & shouldn’t be ignored. Not only does it clean between each tooth, but also keeps your gums healthy by preventing bacteria from getting inside and causing infection.

When it comes to rinsing, you may have been told it belongs last, but it doesn’t really matter. In fact, rinsing beforehand can loosen debris in your mouth before you attack it with a toothbrush.

If you have questions or concerns about dental hygiene, make an appointment today with Dr. Towfighi at 916-236-3131 or visit our website at www.capitolperiodontistselkgrove.com.

Dr. Towfighi proudly serves Elk Grove and all surrounding areas.

Smoking Is Damaging Your Smile | Elk Grove Dentist

It comes as no surprise that smoking will end up causing various problems to your health, from lung cancer to heart conditions. This has been common knowledge for quite a while now. But what may be getting overlooked is the damage it does to your mouth. Believe it or not, but the mouth is the first line of defense when it comes to your overall health, so taking care of it is extremely important. Not only does smoking break down your immune system, but it also kills the good bacteria in your mouth, allowing the disease-causing bacteria to invade, take hold and flourish.

But if you think you’re safe because you don’t smoke, think again. All tobacco products damage your gums by affecting the way your teeth are attached to the bone and soft tissue. When this happens, your gums will begin to recede, giving bacteria access to the tooth’s roots. If left untreated, you will begin to lose your teeth.

Gum disease will affect most adults at some point in their lives. If you’re a smoker, you are raising those doubling those stakes than that of a non-smoker. And because smoking causes your blood vessels to shrink, it will also be more difficult to heal the gum disease you have developed over time.

We know it is difficult, but smoking is one habit that has so many adverse effects, it is important that you make an effort to quit. Not only will you improve your overall health, your smile will thank you for it. Keeping up with your oral health is necessary, so make sure you practice proper dental hygiene and visit your dentist regularly.

If you have questions or concerns about the effects of tobacco, make an appointment today with Dr. Towfighi at 916-236-3131 or visit our website at www.capitolperiodontistselkgrove.com.

Dr. Towfighi proudly serves Elk Grove and all surrounding areas.

Why Do I Have Gum Disease? | Elk Grove Dentist

It may not be our favorite thing to do, but dental visits are necessary to maintain a healthy smile needs a professional assessment every so often. Not only do we get a good cleaning, but we can also find out if we are developing any issues. And if we aren’t doing a good job, there is a high chance you will develop some type of gum disease. Nearly half of Americans will.

Gum disease is an infection of the tissues that surround your teeth and a major cause of tooth loss in adults. The thing is, you may not even know you have it. Plaque is the primary cause of gum disease, but there are other factors that can contribute to periodontal disease:

  • Hormonal changes during pregnancy, puberty, menopause, and monthly menstruation cause gums to become more sensitive, making you more susceptible to gingivitis
  • Various illnesses may affect the condition of your gums. Cancer or HIV interfere with the immune system, diabetes effect on the body’s ability develop dental infections and cavities
  • Medications can cause dry mouth, which has a protective effect on teeth and gums
  • Bad habits like smoking make it harder for gum tissue to repair itself
  • Poor oral hygiene habits make it easier for gingivitis to develop
  • Family history of dental disease can be a contributing factor for the development of gingivitis

The problem is, we can have gum disease and not even know it. This is why it is important to keep those dental appointments. The earlier you catch it, the easier it is to treat it.

If you have questions or concerns about gum disease prevention, make an appointment today with Dr. Towfighi at 916-236-3131 or visit our website at www.capitolperiodontistselkgrove.com.

Dr. Towfighi proudly serves Elk Grove and all surrounding areas.

Improve Your Smile with Your Sinuses? | Elk Grove Dentist

There is no doubt that everyone wants the best smile possible. So, every handful of months, we make a dental appointment to make sure everything is going well inside our mouths. Sometimes when we need to have an implant inserted into our mouths in order to repair an issue that has developed. It is an easy and permanent way to fix a dental flaw and very common. Unfortunately, there may be an issue involved we were unaware of – our sinuses.

Maxillary sinuses are air spaces located inside our skulls. Picture a balloon placed in your skull at the roots at the back of your upper teeth. These little “balloons” lighten up our skulls enough so our necks can carry them. When an implant is necessary in this area, it causes a problem for our sinuses. Because the roots of the tooth hold up the sinuses, placing an implant will disturb the balloon, possibly “popping it”. The solution? A sinus lift.

A sinus lift is exactly what it sounds like – a lifting of your sinuses in order to insert the implant and protecting the area with bone. One way the procedure is done is to cut an area to expose the bone, then adding bone-grafted material into the area before the incision is closed. Over the next 3-6 months enough bone will be produced to hold the implant. There is another version done when there is enough bone available but could be punctured. Bone is used to act like a hydraulic jack to move the sinuses out of harm’s way before the implant is placed. Ask your dentist about which option is best for you.

If you have questions or concerns about sinus lifts, make an appointment today with Dr. Towfighi at 916-236-3131 or visit our website at www.capitolperiodontistselkgrove.com.

Dr. Towfighi proudly serves Elk Grove and all surrounding areas.