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Changes in oral health due to the pandemic

The pandemic has affected all of us in many ways.  In the dental office we are noticing an increase in poor home care resulting in unhealthy, bleeding gums.  The pandemic has caused everybody to get off the schedule that they were accustomed to. Because the daily schedule has changed some habits built into routine have also changed.  Many people have fallen out of the habit of brushing their teeth twice daily for two minutes or flossing daily.  These may seem like small habits but they are crucial in maintaining your oral health and as we always educate our patients your oral health affects your overall health.

Another dental concern on the rise is fractured teeth.  There is an increased of level in stress in all of our lives.  A reponse to stress is clenching or grinding your teeth this is known as bruxism.  Most patients are not aware they have a bruxism habit.  Bruxism can occur at night while you are sleeping.  Some clinical signs of bruxism are awakening with soreness or tightness in the jaw or all the teeth are sore upon awakening.  If the dentist observes wear on the chewing surface of teeth or at the gumline these are also signs of bruxism.  If you have a tooth or teeth that fractured or cracked this can also be the result of bruxism.

The good news is all of these concerns can be addressed when you see the dentist.  It is recommended to have a dental cleaning twice a year.  In our office we evaluate the health of the gum tissue with a periodontal exam.  We base our treatment on the individual patient.  Some patients might be required to have a dental cleaning ever 3 or 4 months to maintain healthy gums.  Some patients may require gum therapy to achieve healthy gum tissue.  If a patient has bruxism an occlusal guard can be custom made to help protect the teeth and reduce stress on the temporomandibular joint.  If a patient had a cracked or fractured tooth a beautiful, strong all ceramic crown can be custom made to restore and protect the tooth.

Now more than ever it is important to visit our office for a cleaning and exam to help you maintain your complete dental health.  Please view our safety protocol video to see the steps we have taken to protect our patients and team from the spread of covid-19.  We look forward to serving you.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Author
Dr. Ann N. Hebda Dentist/owner Complete Health Dentistry Ashburn Virginia

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