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July 19th, 2017

Exercise - It's Good For Your Teeth Too!

Exercise is essential for keeping the overall functionality of the body healthy. There are many benefits of exercising including stress relief, muscle building, and better mental health. Are you also aware that exercise is excellent for your gums and teeth as well? The health of your body is linked to heart disease as well as gum disease. Here are some of the things you should know when it comes to how exercise has a positive impact on your dental health:

Regular Exercise Can Reduce the Risk of Gum Disease

Periodontitis, commonly known as gum disease, is often associated with harmful bacteria attacking the gums. Research published in the Journal of Dentistry in 2005 showed that frequent exercise is associated with a lower risk of contracting periodontitis. The study found a correlation between gum disease and physical activities. The report concluded that regular exercise is accompanied with a lower risk of gum disease. According to the research, non-smokers who participated in regular exercise were 54% less likely to have gum disease compared to those who reported no daily activities or were smokers. Research done by The National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey also discovered that even partially active individuals (participating in physical activity three times or less a week) were 33% less prone to periodontitis than non-active people. Physically active people (involved in exercise five times or more a week) reported a lower occurrence of periodontitis than the inactive group.

Correlation between BMI and Dental Health

Maintaining a healthy Body Mass Index (BMI) is very beneficial to your oral health. Some health problems associated with obesity, hypertension, and diabetes are related to bad oral health. According to the research published in The Journal of Periodontology from the University of Florida, there is a direct effect of body weight on oral health. The study involved examined the Body Mass Index, percentage body fat, and oxygen intake. According to the research, individuals who engaged in the recommended levels of exercise and maintained an average weight with healthy eating habits, were 40% less likely to have gum disease compared to those who did none of the health-improving behaviors. Exercising has amazing benefits not only for your body and brain but also for your dental health. You don’t have to be a marathon superstar to gain the oral health benefits of exercise. Even walking for 30 min a day is enough to improve your dental health. For beginners, consult your doctor on the type of training that is best for you.

Ultimately, the choice is still in your hands. It’s easy to enjoy physical activities in Playa del Rey, Marina del Rey, Westchester, Playa Vista, West Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Venice, El Segundo, Manhattan Beach, Hermosa Beach, Redondo Beach, South Bay, and all the surrounding areas!  With the beautiful weather you can exercise outside by biking, jogging, or fishing. It’ll have a significant impact on your health. Keep that physical activity up to at least three times a week to help reduce your risk of periodontitis!

Despite all the benefits exercise has on your oral health, you still need to pay special attention to your oral hygiene. So keep brushing your teeth twice a day, flossing daily, and biannual visits to the dentist.

July 5th, 2017

Best Ways to Maintain Good Oral Health

There’s a lot that can be done in regards to ensuring you have good oral health. When you take the right approach, it can have a notable beneficial impact on your life. These habits are best picked up from a young age and practiced on a regular basis so you can carry them on throughout your life into responsible adulthood. It can turn into something that you don't even have to think about!

Bleeding gums and dental pain are not the only issues that can affect you when you neglect your oral hygiene. Poor oral hygiene can cause bad breath and affect your appearance in a negative way. By taking the appropriate steps, to can help prevent these adverse effects.

Begin with getting a brushing routine in place. You need to do this at least twice a day. To avoid damage from the acids that food particles in your mouth produce, it would be ideal to brush after each meal but two times is is adequate for most people. You should be able to manage to integrate this into your daily hygiene routine. Keep a toothbrush and toothpaste in your desk at work or in your briefcase or weekend bag when you’re on the go. And always have some water on hand. Drinking water after eating and drinking will help wash away bacteria and food particles for a whiter and healthier smile.

Not only is timing important, but the type of toothbrush matters a lot too. Firm bristles are what you want from your toothbrush - but not too firm! You don’t want to wear away enamel or instigate gum recession. Your toothpaste matters too. Get one that contains anti plaque ingredients like fluoride. Just be sure not to swallow it. Swallowing small amounts of fluoride is fine, but excess consumption can make you feel ill and have other negative consequences depending on the amount ingested.

While daily brushing and flossing are necessary to have great oral health, you still need to have a professional cleaning and checkup done as well at least twice a year. Dr. Guttman understands that you might have trepidations and is very sympathetic to your concerns. He does specialize in ‘dental chickens’ after all! To help make the experience more relaxing and enjoyable, think about asking a family member or close friend to come with you.

As a final note, if you are past the maintenance portion of good oral health and need to get back on track, don’t worry, every little bit helps! Start today by brushing first thing in the morning. While you were sleeping you mouth was busing producing harmful odor causing bacteria. Brush that away with a good brush and toothpaste. In the evenings, don’t forget to floss! Flossing needs to be done at least once a day. The evenings are a good time to extract all the food particles and bacteria that have been wedges in between your teeth throughout your day. And be sure to brush before you go to bed. You don’t want nasty bacteria that has been collected (and growing!) throughout the day to increase exponentially while you sleep.

And remember, if you are just starting out on being more vigilant with your oral hygiene, you may notice some gum tenderness or a little bleeding when brushing or flossing. While this might be fine, and go away with continual brushing and flossing overtime, please let us know if it persists! Ignoring dental issues can make them worse.

 

June 21, 2017

Your Oral Health As You Age

Good oral hygiene habits need to be kept by everyone from babies whose teeth have yet to emerge all the way to adults - even if they don’t have any natural teeth left! While the habits may change, the routine should stay in place. With a deeply routed routine, you have a better chance of great oral hygiene for years to come!

Before a child is born, good oral health should be in place. It is important for expectant women to maintain good oral health, as it can affect their pregnancy and possibly put the baby at risk. There is a link between having gum disease during pregnancy and premature births and having a baby with a low birth weight. So keep those chomper healthy to help give birth to a healthy baby.

Now, once the baby is born, her or his mouth needs to be taken care of. While teeth have not yet emerged, you should still keep your baby’s mouth clean. A soft damp wash cloth can be used to wipe the gums. There are even special brushes babies can chew on to stimulate the gums and saliva production to maintain a healthy mouth. As soon as your child’s first tooth emerges, you need to start brushing it. Once any teeth touch, that is when flossing should begin. Teach your child to brush twice a day and to always spit out the toothpaste. It is important to watch your child as she or he brushes to make sure toothpaste is not swallowed. The fluoride that protects their teeth can wreak havoc on their tummies. It is also a good idea to watch your child’s technique. Poor brushing can lead to cavities.

The oral care needs of children vary as they transition from primary to permanent teeth. By the time your child is 13 years old, most of her or his permanent teeth will be in place. However, there are always some factors that can negatively influence your child's oral development. Genetics is one factor. If you have had multiple cavities caused by decay, then your child is more prone to a poor oral condition. An unbalanced diet and poor oral hygiene can also create a lot of problems for your baby's oral health.

As we grow old, our smell and taste change too. We find that things we used to love to eat don't smell or taste as good. This might mean we can't tell when food has gone bad or is unfit to eat. Often, senior adults compensate for this loss of taste by eating sweeter and saltier foods. When seniors eat more foods that are sweeter and saltier, they need to be even more vigilant in keeping up their oral hygiene. Mouth infections, while making eating unpleasant, are also dangerous to a person's health, especially if her or his immune system depreciates due to a nutritional deficiency. Broken teeth, missing teeth, lack of ability to grind or bite, and lessened jaw strength can all lead to not eating well and, ultimately, malnutrition. It may become more difficult, or even painful, to brush and floss. There are electric toothbrushes and dental picks that can help.  As we age, some aspects of daily living become harder. The gradual decline in oral health begins the process of creating an unhealthy mouth environment that not only can affect the senior with pain, swelling and difficulty eating but also may lead to medical issues - some of which could result in death. This is especially necessary for seniors who produce less saliva as they age. Even if all your teeth are gone, you need to maintain healthy gums to reduce the change of bone loss in your jaw and other more drastic complications.

The key is to keep up the routine of good oral hygiene throughout your life. And don’t be afraid to come by the dentist twice a year. With our specially trained team, going to the dentist doesn’t have to be avoided!

 

June 7, 2017

Why Oral Health is Important to Your Overall Health

Many people disregard the relationship between oral health and overall health. There are numerous medical conditions, such as diabetes, heart disease, rheumatoid arthritis, osteoporosis, cancer and adverse outcomes of pregnancy that are associated with poor oral health. Your general health can also impact your oral health.

It's All Connected

Diseases such as periodontal disease, as well as other systemic diseases that affect your oral health, will in turn affect your diet as these conditions may make it more difficult or painful to eat certain foods. This results in poor nutrition, which not only compromises your oral health but also your general health.

Diabetes and Oral Health

Poorly regulated diet and medication for diabetes can cause an increase in high blood sugar levels and increased amounts of sugar in saliva. This can lead to a series of oral afflictions such as dry mouth, periodontal disease, cavities, infections and more. These conditions further affect your mouth and general health in many ways. For instance, dry mouth can cause difficulty and pain when chewing, tasting and swallowing which may affect your diet. It also leaves your teeth more vulnerable to oral bacteria, since saliva is your body's natural defense against these microorganisms. If you are not producing enough saliva, harmful bacteria in your mouth will not be diluted and can lead to cavities, as well as difficulties swallowing and digesting. Periodontal disease amplifies the difficulty of maintaining good blood glucose control in people with diabetes. Other conditions, such as heart disease, show a direct link with oral health afflictions and risks. Oral health becomes vitally important and can serve as an indicator for general health conditions.

Oral Health Starts At Home

As we have discovered, maintaining a good standard of oral hygiene will not only be good for oral health but will also do wonders for your general health. And the best place to start is at home. Keep a consistent and well-rounded basic oral hygiene routine, along with regular visits to your dentist to ensure that your teeth and gums are looked after properly. By brushing, flossing and rinsing twice daily, you will be completing the simplest and least expensive, yet most effective, steps towards protecting your oral health.

Here are a few things that you should do to help your teeth stay healthy and disease free:

1. Brush your teeth at least twice a day. Brushing helps to remove remaining food particles from in between teeth and also wash away acidic remnants from the food you consumed.

2. Flossing is a must. It’s a very important daily activity which you should never ignore. Flossing, like brushing can help get rid of food remaining in between the teeth, which can later decompose and create bad breath and cavities.

3. Avoid sugary foods. As a general rule, refined sugar is not recommended for good health. Generally speaking, this creates acidity and gastric problems. When sugary matter remains on the teeth, it weakens the enamel and causes cavities.

It is very important that you pay attention to the health of your teeth and mouth in general. Neglecting your oral health may impact the rest of your body negatively. Let your dentist know if you’ve noticed any changes in your overall and oral health since your last visit. It’s important to catch problems early to prevent bigger issues down the line!

May 24, 2017

8 Bad Habits to Break to Save Your Teeth!

Everyone wants to maintain a healthy lifestyle. And the first stop down the road is your mouth! Your mouth is the gateway to the rest of your body. As such, every effort made to achieve a healthy lifestyle should start with maintaining good oral health. However, certain habits compromise good oral health. This article is going to highlight some common habits that put your oral health at risk.

1. Smoking

Stop smoking! Not only does it pose a great threat to oral health, it also causes yellowing and weakening of teeth. It can also cause tooth decay, bad breath and possible loss of teeth. Regular cleaning of teeth can reduce these effects on your teeth to a great extent.

2. Not Flossing

Not flossing teeth regularly can be detrimental to your oral health. Many people think that since they brush their teeth after every meal, they don't have to floss their teeth often. The fact is teeth brushing doesn't remove all bacteria. A toothbrush doesn't reach all parts of your teeth's surface. Food and bacteria can get trapped between your teeth. This will lead to piling up of food particles and other kinds of bacteria resulting in bad breath and an increase in the risks of contracting other dental illnesses - like gum disease.

3. Using Teeth as Tools

Teeth should be used only for the intended purpose of chewing food and nothing else. Opening a bottle or tearing up hard materials using your teeth can lead to fractures or chipping. Proper tools should be used to do these tasks to avoid the possible dangers that come with using your teeth instead.

4. Consumption of Sugary Drinks

Intake of large quantities of sugar exposes your teeth to acids. As a result, your teeth’s enamel can start to wear away. It cannot be recovered once lost. This is a big concern. When your tooth enamel is weakened, you become much more susceptible to cavities. A reduction in the consumption of sugary beverages is necessary for better oral health.

5. Teeth Grinding

Teeth grinding occurs when you actively slide the teeth on your lower jaw against the teeth on your upper jaw. It mostly occurs unconsciously during sleep, but sometimes while awake as well. You may even be absent mindedly grinding your teeth during your waking hours and not even notice it. Stress is a major cause of teeth grinding. Excessive grinding may result in teeth being fractured or broken. Putting on a mouth guard when going to sleep is a good way to solve this problem. If you grind your teeth, you can undergo massage therapy. This may help achieve muscles relaxation in your jaws, hence avoid grinding teeth. Other relaxation methods you can perform throughout the day may help reduce your stress levels and perhaps in turn lead you to grind your teeth less. If you are not sure whether or not you grind your teeth, ask your doctor or dentist. Medical professionals are specially trained to recognize the signs of teeth grinding. You may notice that your jaw is sore or that you frequently have headaches for seemingly no reason. If this is the case, consult your doctor.

6. Brushing Too Hard

When you brush your teeth too hard, you may damage your teeth as well as irritate your gums. Using a hard brush may also expose your teeth to the same effect. It is best to use a soft bristled brush and to not be too aggressive. Harder is not better in this case. Be sure to replace your toothbrush every three months. If it seems like you need to replace your toothbrush more frequently, you may be brushing too hard and need to lighten up.

7. Chewing Non Food Items or Ice

This is common among students or working professionals who are either fatigued or trying to concentrate on their work. Chewing things like pencils or pen caps may cause teeth to break. Even chewing on ice can be detrimental. The cold ice may freeze your teeth and make them more susceptible to cracking on hard ice cubes.

8. Skipping Visits to the Dentist

Come see us, we miss you! And we want to make sure there aren’t some underlying issues going on that you are unaware of. We’d like to catch and stop your issues as soon as possible to prevent them from escalating and doing more damage. Professional dental cleanings twice a year get rid of hard to reach bacteria to prevent it from growing and damaging your oral health.

Avoiding the above-mentioned habits will go a long way in ensuring a good oral health. This, in turn, leads to good overall health as well!

 

May 10, 2017

Why You Should Not Be Scared to Visit the Dentist

Going to the dentist does not have to be a scary endeavor. At Dr. Jerome Guttman’s practice, we aim to take the shame, stress, and anxiety out of going to the dentist so you can have your dental problems treated sooner rather than later.

Dental problems can affect anyone at any time. No matter the severity of the issues, some people are embarrassed or scared to visit a dentist to get proper professional treatment done to correct their issues. Delaying treatment can worsen your situation and may necessitate drastic measures be taken later down the line. There are many reasons why someone might be afraid to go to the dentist, but the right dentist can turn all that around!

Why People Are Afraid of the Dentist

It only takes one instance or one story. Once a dental phobia sets in, it is hard to go to the dentist, but not impossible! Sometimes starting off in childhood and then being carried on into adulthood, the phobia can last for years, even decades! With a dental phobia, going to see the dentist can cause unnecessary anguish and discomfort. But neglecting to visit the dentist can result in poor oral hygiene and potentially more uncomfortable and expensive procedures later.

Our Dental Visits

When you come to our office in Playa Del Rey for an appointment, we will make sure that you are comfortable and are given time to become familiar with the surroundings. After listening to your concerns regarding your dental problems, we will explain the possible options for you. To ensure that there is minimal pain and that you have a non-traumatic experience, you can even choose to have all the dental work done while under the influence of sedatives. You may remain sedated for the duration of the procedure, if possible.

Sedation Options and Techniques

To make sure that you have trouble free visit to the dentist, you can opt for dentistry under sedation. Dr. Jerome Guttman’s practice offers different sedation methods. Check out the links below for more information on our sedation options:

If you are looking for a non-judgemental dentist in Playa Del Rey who specializes in nervous patients, you can rest assured that Dr. Jerome Guttman is the dentist for you. His practice specializes in catering to “dental chickens.” Let us share with you the variety of techniques we can use to put you at ease. Your health and comfort is our top priority!

 

April 21, 2017

Sedation dentistry is a type of dentistry performed while the patient is in some level of unconsciousness. It is often used for patients who have anxiety about going to the dentist or for patients who are very sensitive. Sedation dentistry is also used for dental procedures that take a long time to complete. There are several types and levels of sedation available. Dr. Guttman suggests different types of sedation depending on the dental procedure to be performed and the level of anxiety and sensitivity the patient is experiencing.

Although sometimes referred to as sleep dentistry, not all types of sedation dentistry are intended to put a patient to sleep. While some forms of sedation will put patients into a sleep-like state, others are only meant to relax a patient so that he or she feels no anxiety about the dental procedure and little or no discomfort. Just as there are different types of dental sedation techniques, there are also varying levels of sedation that can be achieved. Dr. Guttman’s practice administers oral conscious sedation, IV sedation, anxiolysis, and nitrous gas. Below is a description of each type of sedation he provides.

Oral Conscious Sedation

Medication that is administered orally to reduce fears or discomfort, but not put the patient to sleep, is called oral conscious sedation. With this type of sedation, no needles are required. This type is less expensive than other types of sedation, like those administered through an IV.

IV Sedation

Intravenous (or IV) sedation is administered directly into the patient’s blood stream. This type of sedation may be preferable if the patient’s levels of fear or discomfort are very high. The IV sedation is safely provided by Dr. Robert Nolan. He is one of a few dentist in the Los Angeles area who are certified to administer IV sedation. While Dr. Guttman performs the dental procedure, Dr. Nolan will monitor the patient’s IV sedation.

Anxiolysis

Mild oral sedatives - like Valium or Triazolam - are used to generate a “light sedation” called anxiolysis. Sometimes “laughing gas” - nitrous oxide - is used with the oral sedative to increase the patient’s levels of relaxation and comfort without putting the patient to sleep.

Nitrous Oxide

To put the patient at ease and practically eliminate pain due to dental procedures, “laughing gas” - nitrous oxide - might be the best option. This type of sedation can put the patient in a relaxed state and elevate the patient’s level of comfort without completely putting the patient to sleep.

Anxiety and pain are no reasons to keep you from having the healthy and beautiful looking smile you deserve. Dr. Guttman and his team are specially trained to put the most anxious patients at ease. Call (310) 827-5094 to set up an appointment for a totally relaxed experience!

August 9th, 2017

5 Tips for Great Oral Heather During the Summer

Summer is winding down, but that doesn’t mean your oral health habits should! It’s especially important to take care of your teeth during the summer since the heat can actually lead to tooth decay - even around existing fillings. Here are five oral health tips for hot weather to get you through what’s left of the summer.

1. Drink plenty of water
Summer is the hottest time of the year. Your entire body loses the most amount of water during this time, including your mouth. A dryer mouth encourages bacterial growth by allowing more sugars to stick to your teeth’s surfaces. Drinking a lot of water will not only help to wash away sugars and bacteria but also re-hydrate your mouth and discourage food from decaying. Keep a water bottle with you and sip from it frequently throughout the day.

2. Avoid carbonated and sugary drinks
When summer heat makes you thirsty, don’t go for the carbonated and sugary drinks to quench your thirst. The nature of carbonated drinks makes them much stickier than other drinks. The acid and sugar in them will stick to your teeth’s surfaces and encourage tooth decay. Drink more water instead to quench your thirst.

3. Reduce sugary food consumption
With the mercury rising, so does everyone’s cravings for refreshing popsicles and ice cream. While these sweet treats might cool you down temporarily, the sugar in them will wreak havoc on your oral health. Even natural fruit juices and frozen bars have sugar in them that can be detrimental too! Try sugar-free options or drink a glass of water after you indulge in sweet foods and drinks.

4. Brush twice daily and floss
With your schedule being a little different due to vacations and other fun summer activities, you might forget to brush your teeth at least twice a day and floss. This is the most simple little thing you can do to help keep your teeth healthy.

5. Visit a dentist
Visiting a dentist at the end of summer is an great way to jumpstart the autumn. Your dentist might even be able to squeeze you in before your last vacation of the summer. You don’t want to be out and about trying to see the sites or have a relaxing time and then have to deal with dental issues. If you or your kids are going back to school, try to get an appointment in with your dentist before classes start. It can be difficult to find time during the busy school year to see the dentist. When you have free time in the summer, it’s a great idea to make an appointment.

Observing the above-mentioned guidelines will help you get through the summer with great oral health!