Charles F. Orth, DDS/PA

Healthy Habits for a Healthier New Year!

So we are now just a few days into a new year. How are you doing? Did you make new year’s resolutions this year? How are they going? Do people even make new years resolutions anymore? I suppose this year, we probably all just had a simple resolution of having a better year than last year. 🙂

Happy New Year from Dr. Orth

And guess what…you CAN have a better year than last year. Of course, as a periodontal office, we can’t fix everything for you, but we can give some advice that will actually make a difference in your overall health and well-being.

One of the most important things to keep in mind is that SMALL CHANGES OVER TIME MAKE A BIG IMPACT.

We know people say things like this all the time, but its true. This is how babies grow into adults, right? Tiny cell upon tiny cell until 8 lbs of newborn cuteness becomes full grown. This is how canyons are formed. This is how recruits become Marines. This is how mountains are climbed. This is how a high school kid eventually becomes a trusted periodontist…every day, making the small choices, the small changes, because you know it’s taking you somewhere better.

But I know what the hesitation is: you think to yourself “Yeah, right. They say ‘small changes’ but they’re really way more invasive, way more inconvenient, way more expensive, and way more difficult than anyone ever lets on.” Sometimes that is true, we agree. Getting a gym membership with a personal trainer and committing to 6 months of the KETO diet with a paid mean-planning service is not what we have in mind though. We really are talking about small changes. Small habits. Small amounts of time. Small commitments.

And guess what? These changes can save you money, save you time and save your health in the long run! Really and truly.

So let’s talk about what these changes are. What can you do to start building healthy habits for your dental and oral health this year? It’s really easier than you might think and really only takes about 5 extra minutes every day. So if you have 5 extra minutes a day and you’re interested in saving money, time and improving your oral health, READ ON…


3 SMALL, SIMPLE HABITS TO IMPROVE YOUR ORAL HEALTH

DRINK MORE WATER.

Huh? Really? Yes, really. Did you know that drinking water is about so much more than staying hydrated? Technically you can stay hydrated with fluids other than just water, but there are additional benefits to drinking more water as opposed to other sources of healthy hydration (like natural juices and sports drinks). Water keeps your mouth moist to lower harmful bacteria that can lead to bad breath, cavities, and gum disease. Drinking water also helps keep your mouth clean in between your oral cleaning routines like brushing and flossing. 

So how do you add more water to your daily intake? Keep a glass next to your kitchen sink and plan to drink a full glass every time you wash your dishes. Fill a thermos and keep it in your car or at your office desk. Drink a full glass of water with every meal.

FLOSS DAILY.

Did you know that when you brush your teeth, you are only cleaning about 60% of the surface of your teeth? So imagine with me for a second…how absurd is it to properly clean just over half of your teeth? What if you only brushed your top teeth and completely ignored your bottom teeth? What if you only vacuumed half your rug or mopped half your kitchen floor? Ha! What a ridiculous thought. Can you imagine the sticky, filthy mess that would eventually accumulate? But that’s exactly what we do when we choose not to floss. We’re neglecting 40% of the surface of our teeth! And we are allowing filthy, sticky residue to build up and begin to damage our teeth and gums.

And yes, I get it. Flossing seems like a hassle to some. So if you’re still not convinced and flossing seems like a chore that’s just not worth it…we recommend that you come visit our hygienists because we would love to show you how quickly and easily you can floss all your teeth in order to ensure that you are cleaning 100% of the surface of your teeth. Also, just take a look at this basic illustration below that shows how to floss. If you spend 60 seconds in the morning and 60 seconds in the evening flossing your teeth (though it doesn’t even need to take that long), you will have made a small change with a BIG impact!

Illustration of How to Floss Properly

Flossing your teeth is really this simple! Dr. Orth recommends flossing at least twice daily for improved oral health.

ADD MOUTHWASH TO YOUR ROUTINE.

So here’s the thing…mouthwash does more than just give you fresh breath. Chewing gum can do that. Mouthwash actually aids in your cleansing routine by stopping odor-causing bacteria. So all you have to do is take a quick swig, swish and spit. It’s as easy as that! Goodbye, bacteria. Hello, healthy mouth!


So do you know how long these things will take if you add them to your daily routine? Go ahead. Guess. I mean, we pretty much already gave you the total time commitment we’re talking about here…probably 3 minutes. THAT’S IT.

3 MINUTES!!

Three minutes a day can make a substantial impact on your oral health, your wallet and your health!

“Well, wait a minute…”, you say. “I get how this doesn’t take much time and how it impacts my oral health. So I guess I’m on board with those things. But how can these simple oral health habits make an impact on my budget?”

Just consider the cost of tooth replacement surgery. Or a root canal. Or the time and financial investment of regular teeth whitening procedures, gum surgery, or any other oral procedure that becomes necessary due to neglecting basic oral healthcare routines. Of course, there are many different factors that affect your oral health, such as hereditary traits, smoking or tobacco use, eating habits, and so on. So we are not saying that flossing, drinking more water and using mouthwash will fix THOSE issues, but we are saying that by practicing proper oral hygiene and good habits on a daily basis, you are REDUCING YOUR RISK of serious complications in the future. And complications mean costlier procedures that possibly could have been avoided through a few simple but strategic changes.

Is it worth it? Absolutely.

If you are ready to start this year off on the right foot with small, healthy habits that make an impact, then get started today! Don’t wait. And you should call Dr. Orth’s office at 972-991-9891 to schedule your first periodontal cleaning and visit of 2021. If there is one thing that 2020 has taught us, it is that we should never take our health for granted. Take your health seriously and take the time to protect your oral and dental health with the exceptional periodontal and dental implant care provided by Dallas periodontist, Dr. Charles Orth, and his team. We’ll see you soon!

And happy new year!

How do I care for my dental implants?

“How do I care for my dental implants?”

“Will my dental implants be permanent?”

“What do I do if there is a complication or problem with my dental implants?”

These are some common questions asked because just like anything, our patients want to know about the long-term implications of tooth loss replacement through dental implants.

We understand that any type of dental care can cause anxiety, especially dental surgery for tooth loss. And of course, there are many negative associations with dentures so our patients regularly want to know that their dental implants will be permanent, natural in appearance and easy to care for. Your mouth and smile is such an important part of your daily life and overall health and wellbeing, which is why our team at the office of Dallas periodontist, Charles Orth, DDS, specializes in exceptional care. We want our patients to know that we truly understand their concerns and take great care to offer answers to any and every question you may have about your dental implants or periodontal care.

dental implants

If you are looking for tooth loss replacement with dental implants, call the office of Dallas periodontist, Charles F. Orth, DDS.

So if you have questions, please refer to the information about dental implants included throughout our website. Here are some quick links for your reference with helpful videos and illustrations to show different elements of the implant process:

Overview of Dental Implants
Overview of Implant Placement
Implant Supported Denture
After Implant Placement

We also recommend checking out the American Academy of Periodontology and their patient resources section on dental implants HERE.

And of course, if you have any questions that you can’t find an answer to on our website, please feel free to call our office. Our friendly and knowledgeable staff will be happy to answer your questions and schedule you for a consultation with Dr. Orth.

#thegumdoc #stayhealthyandhappy #dallasperiodontist

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Do I need to see a periodontist?

In short, the answer is yes. Even if you regularly see a general dentist or hygienist and practice good oral hygiene, you may still need to visit a periodontist. While research is continually advancing in the areas of periodontal health, studies consistently indicate a relationship between your periodontal and oral health with your overall health and wellbeing. 

Many people may not understand the difference between a general dentist and a periodontist, so let’s talk about that for a minute. What is the difference between a general dentist and a periodontist?

According to the American Academy of Periodontology, a periodontist is a dentist who specializes in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of periodontal disease, and in the placement of dental implants. Periodontists are also experts in the treatment of oral inflammation. Periodontics is recognized as one specialized area of dentistry, so to become a periodontist or any other dental specialist, a dentist must obtain additional training and education beyond dental school.

Meaning that all periodontists are dentists, but not all dentists are periodontists. And this is why your general dentist or a hygienist may recommend a consultation with a periodontist if they find signs of periodontal disease through the course of a checkup or other dental care appointment. However, if you have neglected your regular dental visits and cleanings in recent months or years, then you should pay attention to your oral health to see if you are experiencing any signs of gum disease. If you notice any of the common signs of periodontitis, you can decide to see a periodontist even without a referral.

So what are the signs of gum disease? And when do you know that you should visit a periodontist? If you experience any of the following symptoms, we encourage you to schedule an appointment with Dallas periodontist, Dr. Charles Orth, without delay:

  • Bleeding while brushing or eating normal foods.

    Why is this a symptom you should be concerned about? Because unexplained bleeding while performing regular cleaning or consuming food is actually the most common sign of a periodontal infection.

Signs that you should visit a periodontist

  • Bad breath.

    Why should I be concerned about bad breath? Because ongoing halitosis (bad breath), which continues despite rigorous oral cleaning, can point to periodontitis, gingivitis or the beginnings of a gum infection. Essentially its a sign that bacteria is living in your mouth, which is the cause of inflammation, gum disease and eventually tooth loss, if not treated properly.

  • Loose teeth and gum recession.

    If you notice that your teeth seem to appear elongated or that your gums are receding at all, then you should schedule an appointment with a periodontist. Longer-looking and loose-feeling teeth can indicate recession of the gums and/or bone loss as a result of periodontal disease.

  • Related health concerns.

    Our whole body is connected and health concerns in one area indicate a reason to evaluate other important areas of our health, especially when we’re talking about infections and inflammation. Did you know: patients with heart disease, diabetes, osteopenia or osteoporosis are often diagnosed with correlating periodontal infections. It is important to understand that the bacterial infection can spread through the blood stream, affecting other areas of the body. So if you are suffering from other health concerns, such as these mentioned, you should be sure to include periodontal visits and maintenance as a part of your ongoing healthcare regimen. For more information about the Mouth-Body connection and the relationship between periodontal health and other concerns, read here.

So do you need to see a periodontist? If you would like to enjoy a lifetime of oral health, then yes. Remember that your mouth is one of your body’s most important warning systems and deserves excellence in care. Your body and your smile will thank you!

 

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Keep Your Smile Healthy During The Holidays

Are you surviving out there, Dallas? Did you make it through the artic blast we experienced last week? Did your system experience shock at the days of gray and bitter cold rain that Texans are just not accustomed to in October? It’s true that we are comfortable with the schizophrenic behavior of North Texas weather, and mostly we embrace it as one of those quirky, loveable personality traits of this entirely unique state…

But this might have been a bit much a bit soon. No?

Either way, the frigid air combined with the insatiable urge to gather firewood and sip hot beverages acted as a rude awakening that…the HOLIDAYS are coming. How did we already get here? Is Halloween really upon us? Is Thanksgiving really just around the corner? Everyone keeps saying how particularly slow this year has dragged on, but in many ways it seems as though the year has also gone rushing by. 2020 – you really have outdone yourself this time.

Since we’re here and there’s really nothing we can do about it, then it’s time to talk about how to make the most of the holiday season. And particularly how to keep your smile healthy during the holidays. Have you stopped to consider that having a healthy holiday season – even DURING the pandemic! – is actually a possibility? And it’s not about restrictive diets or ascetic behaviors. If anything, we all need a season of celebration, filled with activities, people and even foods that we enjoy! And since we know that the season will also be filled with selfies and family photos, we want to be sure we help our patients do everything they can to have HEALTHY and BEAUTIFUL smiles during the holiday season.

So what can you do? Follow these 4 tips for optimal oral and dental health from Halloween through the New Year.

1. Start the holidays off on a CLEAN slate.

This may go without saying, but we’re going to say it anyway…preventative periodontal care and maintenance is absolutely essential to keeping your smile healthy and beautiful! So if you have NOT had your regular hygiene appointment in the past 3 to 6 months, then it’s time to come on in for a professional cleaning. Periodontal disease occurs when plaque – that sticky substance or film on your teeth – builds up and hardens. Regular removal of plaque and build-up through professional cleanings is one of the best defenses against swollen, bleeding and painful gum disease.

2. Be strategic about WHEN you eat your sweets.

Did you know that the timing of eating your sweets – as well as what you do afterward – can have an impact on the effect that sweets have on your mouth? If you’re hitting up the Thanksgiving buffet, then go ahead and put that pumpkin pie on your plate along with the turkey and stuffing. Eating sweets with a balanced meal can actually help keep the sugar from clinging to your teeth while the increased saliva production during regular mealtime can aid in protecting against bacteria. Just don’t forget to brush afterward if you can! If you can’t brush your teeth immediately after eating sweets, then at least do a thorough rinse with water to remove lingering foods or sticky, sugary substances.

3. AVOID the caramels, the crack and the crunch.

Popcorn balls, sticky caramels, hard candies and cracking nuts with your teeth can all wreak havoc on your oral health. If you have a choice, avoid these and instead opt for something lighter, softer or just less likely to get stuck in between your teeth. Your gums will thank you!

4. Be prepared!

Just as we’ve all grown accustomed to keeping an extra mask stashed in our desks at work, our glove boxes or purses for an emergency, do the same with a small dental hygiene kit. Keep some floss, a toothbrush and a small tube of toothpaste, or maybe just some mouthwash, in a zipper pouch in your car or purse. The holiday season is notorious for keeping us all on the go, so make sure you have what you need to keep those teeth sparkling and clean no matter where you go or how late you stay out.

The season of sweets and stress is finally here (as if we haven’t already had enough of that in 2020!)! But don’t let that scare you or stop you from fully enjoying the days ahead. You CAN stay healthy during the holidays. Your teeth CAN stay white and camera-ready. And you CAN smile and laugh with confidence.

Ready to schedule that appointment for a healthier, cleaner smile during the holidays? Call Dallas periodontist, Charles Orth, DDS, today! Our team specializes in excellent care and is ready to help you achieve a lifetime of oral health.

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Breast Cancer and Periodontal Health

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month! So many of our loved ones have suffered, survived and some have been lost…and we want to do everything we can to help raise awareness and #beatbreastcancer.

Of course the disease is a mystery in so many respects, but as research and treatments continue to advance, new truths continue to come to light about the impact of your oral health on your risk of being diagnosed with breast cancer. For instance, did you know that post-menopausal women with gum disease seem to be at higher risk of developing breast cancer? According to a study published in January 2016 by Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, “Periodontal disease, a common chronic inflammatory disorder, was associated with increased risk of postmenopausal breast cancer, particularly among former smokers who quit in the past 20 years.”¹

Another study published in December 2018 came to the following conclusion: “Periodontal disease may be a potential risk factor for the development of breast cancer among women, and thus effective periodontal therapy may present as a valuable preventive measure against breast cancer.”²

So what can you do? How can you help reduce YOUR risk of breast cancer AND increase your overall health? Well, there’s no magic to it…but simple, routine periodontal and oral healthcare may be a small but significant part of prevention:

    • Brush and floss daily
    • Eat a healthy diet
    • Visit your periodontist regularly
    • Avoid cigarettes and tobacco

While no one can guarantee the extent of the impact of proper periodontal care on your personal risk of developing breast cancer, we want to encourage ALL WOMEN to do everything they can to live healthy and fulfilled lives…and proper oral healthcare is a significant part of that!

And if you have not had your regular periodontal cleaning due to the disruption that COVID has been in our lives and community, don’t wait any longer. Schedule your appointment today. Our office and staff is committed to your health and well-being, and we are doing everything we can to protect our staff and our patients from exposure.

#stayhealthy #staysafe


SOURCES:
¹ American Association for Cancer Research; Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, https://cebp.aacrjournals.org/content/25/1/43
² Women’s Cancer: Frontiers in Oncology, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6299876/

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Much Love to Our Dental Hygienist

Life – specifically the year 2020 – brings all kinds of changes! And just to add to the changes and upheavals of life this year, we are pleased yet saddened to announce the retirement of our dental hygienist, Barbara. We love our dental hygienists, and so this is a bittersweet time for our team. Barbara has been such a significant part of our practice and the lives of our patients for so many years.

THANK YOU. WE LOVE YOU. CONGRATULATIONS. 🥰🥰🥰

Dental hygienist at Orth DDS

 

However much we have dreaded this day, we are overjoyed for Barbara! She has been a dental hygienist for over 40 years and is 100% DESERVING of the freedom and enjoyment in this new season of life. As we all know…

“Retirement is not the end of the road. It is the beginning of the open highway.” – Author Unknown

We know she will miss our team and all the patients who have become dear friends to her throughout her years as a hygienist. But she is so excited to have the opportunity to spend more time with her children, her grandchildren and her beloved greyhound, Bella.

Though it is hard to believe that so much time has passed, Barbara has been a dedicated member of our team for the last 22 years. We all wish that we could have kept her here with us forever! Our entire team as well as our patients have come to rely on her compassion, her friendliness and her skill, which has been such a significant part of our daily lives AND our patients’ health. And while we know that change can be unsettling – especially in a year of such incredible volatility – we want to assure all our patients that our team here at Charles Orth, DDS, is still fully committed to providing all of our patients with the excellence in care you have come to expect from us. Your health and well-being is always our priority, and our team, including our new dental hygienist, looks forward to continuing to provide the highest level of periodontal care.

We look forward to introducing our new dental hygienist to you in the coming weeks. She is excited to meet all of our wonderful and loyal patients!

〉STAY HEALTHY. STAY SAFE.

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Is it SAFE to visit my periodontist during COVID-19?

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed a lot of things about our day-to-day lives and has brought unprecedented interruption to our normal routines – including our healthcare routines. I know we all wonder:


“What is safe?”

“Am I putting myself or others more at risk?”

“How can I stay healthy without compromising my safety?”

“Is it safe to visit my periodontist during COVID?”


The short answer: Yes!

Maintaining your oral and periodontal health is not only safe during COVID-19, but we strongly recommend it! Periodontal disease can actually be triggered by some of the very issues we’ve been facing during Coronavirus including behavioral changes (drinking more coffee or wine than usual?) and increased stress (no need to give an example of this one…). And with the worldwide, economic impact of Coronavirus, preventative periodontal care and maintenance is critical to protecting your gums and teeth from expensive reconstructive or restorative procedures in the future.

periodontal health during covid

Protect your periodontal health during COVID-19 by maintaining your normal healthcare routines.

“But I’m still concerned. What is the team at Dr. Orth’s office doing to make sure I’m safe during my visit?”

We want to assure you that every concern you’ve had, we’ve had too. As your oral healthcare providers, we have always had your health and safety as our primary concern! And we want everyone to feel comfortable when you come in for your appointment, so here are just a few things we are doing to provide a safe and healthy environment in our office so that YOU can continue to receive the periodontal and oral health care that you NEED.

  • To make sure all our patients are healthy, our team will ask you to complete a COVID Screening Form.
  • To make sure all our patients are healthy, our team will conduct temperature checks for every patient.
  • To limit the number of patients in the waiting room, you may be asked to wait outside the office or in your car until the team is ready for you.
  • You may be asked to limit the number of people you bring with you to your appointment.
  • Additional cleaning and sanitation measures will be done after each patient leaves in order to prepare the space for you.
  • Everyone is required to wear a mask while in our office (but yes, you will have to remove your mask during your periodontal exam, cleaning or procedure!). Our oral health care professionals wear N-95 masks for additional safety.
  • High-touch items like magazines may be removed from the waiting room.

We have reviewed all of the expert guidance and research to make sure we’re taking every measure to keep our patients and staff safe. If you have any questions, please reach out to us and we’ll be happy to answer any questions you have about our safety measures. See you soon!

Stay Healthy ┃ Stay Safe

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