Benefits of Using an Oral Appliance for Obstructive Sleep Apnea

Did you know that obstructive sleep apnea affects up to nine percent of the American adult population? Without sleep apnea treatment in Omaha, this condition can potentially lead to serious medical issues that include high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and depression. Thankfully, your dentist can provide you with a type of oral appliance that can be used to manage the symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea.

Sleep Apnea Treatment Omaha

What is Obstructive Sleep Apnea?

Obstructive sleep apnea, or OSA, is a serious sleep disorder that causes your breathing to stop and start repeatedly while you sleep. Also known as the most common type of sleep apnea, OSA occurs when the throat muscles relax and block the airway during sleep. You may suffer from OSA if you experience any of the following symptoms:

  • Loud snoring
  • Daytime sleepiness
  • Waking up with a sore throat or dry mouth
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Morning headache
  • Irritability
  • Depression
  • Decreased libido
  • High blood pressure

What Are the Benefits of Using an Oral Appliance to Manage Obstructive Sleep Apnea?

Although several types of dental devices are used to prevent nighttime grinding, a lesser-known type is an oral appliance that can be used to address symptoms of OSA.

They Work!

In most cases, airway obstruction that leads to snoring and sleep apnea is caused by the tongue and soft tissues in the back of your throat. To make sure that these won’t block your airway, the oral appliance repositions your tongue and jaw. As the tissues are being stabilized and the tongue is being repositioned to move forward in your mouth, more space is created in the back of your throat for air to freely enter and exit.

They’re Custom-Made!

Imagine a soft, flexible mouthguard that’s similar to the ones that athletes wear to protect their teeth and gums while playing contact sports. The custom-made oral appliance for sleep apnea may look like the average mouthguard, but it has more technical features built-in. Best of all, it’s also fabricated based on your bite impressions that were taken by the dentist.

They’re Non-Invasive!

One of the best things about using oral appliances for sleep apnea is the fact that they don’t involve an intensive treatment plan or a surgical procedure. Additionally, the entire experience is extremely simple, from your initial consultation down to your last follow-up appointment.

The Adjustment Period is Quick!

Contrary to what you may have initially expected, it only takes a couple of days for you to get used to wearing an oral appliance for sleep apnea.

They’re Easy To Use!

Since an oral appliance for sleep apnea is worn just like a regular mouth guard, the device is extremely simple to use.

It’s Not a Bulky CPAP Machine!

A CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) machine prevents the airway from collapsing during sleep. It requires the use of a nasal pillow or a full mask to be fitted over the patient’s face. This allows the constant stream of pressurized air through the airway to keep the throat’s soft tissues from blocking it.

Although CPAP machines work, they’re extremely bulky. Alternatively, oral appliances for sleep apnea offer convenience because of their small size. They’re also very easy to clean and travel with.

Sleep Apnea Treatment Omaha

Do You Need Sleep Apnea Treatment in Omaha?

The team of dental professionals at Dentistry for Health strives to protect your heart health with sleep apnea treatments and consult on cases with two local pulmonologists. Contact our office today to schedule your appointment.

About Root Canal Treatment in Omaha

Root Canal Procedure: A Step-by-Step Guide

Did you know that in the United States alone, millions of root canals are completed each year? If you’ve been told that you’re in dire need of a root canal in Omaha, you probably have a ton of questions about the procedure. It’s best to learn the steps so you’ll know what to expect and how to prepare for your treatment.

What Are the Steps of a Root Canal Procedure?

Before the Treatment

Step 1:

Your dentist will revisit the X-rays that were previously taken before inspecting the affected tooth and its surrounding area.

Dentist explaining X-ray to patient
Step 2:

With the use of a small needle, a local anesthetic agent will be administered to numb the area. You’ll feel a slight pinch as soon as the needle penetrates your oral tissue, followed by a numbing sensation that will almost immediately take effect.

Step 3:

A small rubber sheet called a dental dam will be placed over your tooth to isolate it and keep it clean and dry throughout the procedure.

Step 4:

A special drill will be used to create an access hole in the top portion of your tooth to expose the tooth pulp that contains infected nerves and blood vessels.

Root Canal treatment
Step 5:

The tooth pulp will be removed.

Step 6:

To accommodate a filling, the dentist uses small dental files to thoroughly clean, widen, and shape the inner chamber of your tooth. The area will be irrigated to wash away the remaining pulp before it’s thoroughly dried.

Step 7:

Next, an antimicrobial medication will be administered to the root canal to eliminate and prevent further infection. If the infection is severe, the tooth will be left open for a day or more and you’ll be scheduled for another appointment.

Step 8:

If the infection isn’t serious, a biocompatible, rubber-like material called gutta-percha will be used to fill and seal the tooth.

Step 9:

Until a permanent filling or crown is placed, a temporary filling will be placed on top of the treated tooth to protect it from food particles and debris. However, your dentist may also choose to place a permanent filling on the same day.

After the Treatment

Step 10:

You’ll be instructed by your dentist to avoid using the treated tooth when biting or chewing until the effects of the anesthesia wear off. As soon as they do, you’ll be advised to go on a soft diet.

Patient smiling after Root Canal treatment
Step 11:

For a few days following your treatment, you may experience mild discomfort or sensitivity. You may alleviate pain by taking over-the-counter pain relievers including ibuprofen, acetaminophen, or aspirin. Antibiotics may also be prescribed to clear up signs of remaining infection.

Step 12:

If the pain or swelling doesn’t go away, call your dentist.

Step 13:

Once the restoration process is completed, your dentist will instruct you to treat your tooth the same as the rest of your natural teeth.

Do You Need a Root Canal in Omaha?

At Dentistry for Health, we use a collective and interdisciplinary approach to help you achieve a naturally beautiful smile that’s designed to support your holistic health. Contact us now to schedule an appointment.

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Why Should You Straighten Your Teeth?

Did you know that over four million Americans are seeking orthodontic treatment at any given time? If your crooked teeth are keeping you from living your best life, you should get them expertly straightened by a skilled dental practitioner right away. Thanks to cosmetic dentistry in Omaha, the smile of your dreams is within your reach! 

Cosmetic Dentistry Omaha

Best Reasons to Straighten Your Teeth

You’ll Have a Cleaner Mouth!

Millions of bacteria populate your mouth. Unless they’re kept under control, they can potentially cause tooth decay, cavity formation, bad breath, gum disease, and other oral health issues. If there’s one thing you should know about bacteria, it’s the fact that they breed on the food debris that is stuck between your teeth.   

Crooked teeth make it challenging for you to reach certain areas with your toothbrush or fit floss between them. As a result, they become ideal breeding grounds for harmful bacteria. Conversely, straight teeth are much easier to clean because they have fewer places for bacteria to build up and they’re much easier to clean.  

You Lower Your Chances of Developing Gum Disease

Since overcrowded or crooked teeth have surfaces that are difficult to clean, it’s more challenging to ensure optimal health. Without orthodontic intervention, your gums will become more vulnerable to bleeding and inflammation until this eventually leads to gum disease.  

If gum disease is left untreated, it can quickly progress to severe periodontitis which compels your immune system to fight large amounts of bacteria. Sadly, this can have a negative impact on your mouth because it causes gum recession and the painful breakdown of your jaw bone tissues. 

You’ll Prevent Your Teeth from Getting Fractured

It’s easy to get your protruding front teeth broken from a sports-related injury, an accidental fall, or a car accident. If you get your protruding teeth back inside your mouth, you’ll have better chances of keeping them from getting fractured.  

You’ll Reduce the Likelihood of Developing Heart Disease or Stroke

Unfortunately, gum disease affects more than just your oral health. Without proper treatment, bacteria in the inflamed gums can enter the bloodstream and cause damage to the other parts of your body, including your heart. According to research, people who suffer from periodontal disease are 24% to 35% more likely to develop cardiovascular issues. 

Crooked Teeth Affect Your Jaw Alignment

Your temporomandibular joint serves as the sliding hinge that’s responsible for connecting your jawbone to your skull. Since crooked teeth can cause you to clench and grind your teeth, don’t be surprised if you experience chronic headaches, and neck or ear pain.  

Over time, the constant force of clenching or grinding your crooked teeth can lead to a misaligned jaw. To ensure long-term stability and comfort, it’s best to straighten your teeth before it leads to a serious impairment of your TMJ. 

It Makes You Look and Feel Good

If you’re tired of smiling with your mouth closed, you’re not alone. However, it’s important to note that having a straight and healthy smile will not only increase your confidence but will also improve your other people perceive your personality.   

Cosmetic Dentistry Omaha

Experience the Joy of Smiling with Cosmetic Dentistry in Omaha!

Ready for a real smile makeover? At Dentistry for Health, we create confidence by using a collective, interdisciplinary approach to give you a naturally beautiful smile that supports your holistic health! Contact us today to schedule your consultation! 

What You Should Know About Teeth Whitening Treatments

Teeth Whitening Treatments

Are you one of the countless others out there who have considered teeth whitening in Omaha? Perhaps you’ve already tried over-the-counter whitening products, and you weren’t happy about the results. Don’t let this minor setback stop you from achieving the kind of smile you can truly be proud to show off.

Getting your teeth professionally whitened can give you a better and brighter smile for much longer. Compared to other cosmetic procedures, this type of treatment is more affordable and less invasive. What’s more, it also produces immediate results!

Flawless Smile

Frequently Asked Questions About Professional Teeth Whitening Treatments

Who’s the Ideal Candidate for Professional Teeth Whitening?
Unfortunately, this type of cosmetic treatment isn’t ideal for pregnant or nursing mothers. If you have cracked teeth, gum disease, extensive decay, or large cavities, your dentist may recommend postponing the treatment. Also, the bleaching agents won’t work on dental crowns and tooth-colored fillings, so make sure to mention any previous dental work to your dentist ahead of time.

How Effective is This Type of Treatment?

Teeth Whitening Before & After

Under the care of a qualified dental care provider, teeth whitening treatments can help your teeth become eight to nine shades whiter. Although it’s possible for you to achieve a shade similar to when you were still a teenager, it’s important to note that the procedure’s effectiveness is highly dependent upon the status of your teeth before your treatment.

Can the Procedure Cause Damage to My Teeth?
Professional teeth whitening procedures won’t damage your teeth and gum tissue. There’s no need to worry about any adverse effects in the short or long-term because the bleaching agents will be administered by a trained professional. As the whitening formula interacts with your teeth’s enamel, it won’t alter the protective layer in any way.

Is it Going to Be Painful?

Before starting the procedure, your dentist will clean your teeth to ensure your enamel is in great shape and prevent pain and tooth sensitivity during and after your appointment. Although professional teeth whitening procedures are generally painless, you may experience some sensitivity if you have weak enamel.

Equipment

If that’s the case, tooth sensitivity following the treatment shouldn’t last for more than a couple of days.

Will I Get Lasting Results?
Compared to do-it-yourself teeth whitening kits, professional treatments offer teeth whitening results that can last between six months to two years. However, it’s important to note that the way you care for your teeth following your treatment can significantly impact the length of time you’ll experience its results.

How Can I Keep My Teeth White After the Treatment?

Doctor with Patient

To get the most out of your investment, be sure to practice proper oral hygiene by brushing your teeth at least twice a day, flossing, and rinsing with mouthwash daily. Also, don’t forget to visit your dentist for routine cleanings. Keeping your teeth clean will strengthen your enamel and prevent stains from clinging to your teeth.

Another way to keep your smile white and stain-free is to steer clear of dark-colored foods and beverages that may stain your teeth.
These include:

  • Tomato sauce
  • Soy sauce
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Popsicles
  • Blueberries
  • Beets
  • Red wine
  • Soda
  • Coffee
  • Tea
  • Sports drinks
  • Tomato sauce
  • Soy sauce
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Popsicles
  • Blueberries
  • Beets
  • Red wine
  • Soda
  • Coffee
  • Tea
  • Sports drinks

You should also avoid smoking or chewing tobacco products if you don’t want your teeth to start changing color earlier than expected.

Experience the Amazing Benefits of Professional Teeth Whitening in Omaha!
The team of dental experts at Dentistry for Health in Omaha, Nebraska, is ready to assess your oral health using a comprehensive and systemic approach. It’s our goal to empower you to make decisions based on your personal needs and desires. If you’re ready to get your teeth professionally whitened, contact us today to request an appointment.

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Common Myths About TMJ Disorders Debunked!

What are TMJ Disorders?

Did you know there is a hidden joint called the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) right in front of your ear? You’ll know that you have TMJ-related issues if you experience pain whenever you try to open and close your mouth. Thankfully, the best dentist in Omaha can help you find relief.

A TMJ disorder is a condition that can significantly affect your overall health and well-being. Some of the possible reasons for your TMJ working improperly include misaligned teeth, arthritis, injury, and stress. If left untreated, you may have difficulty chewing your food, speaking, or even yawning.

lady having headache

While millions of Americans suffer from TMJ disorder, only a few of them have the correct information about this condition. Since myths continue to surround this disorder, it’s best to learn the truth behind the misconceptions.

Debunking the Common Myths About TMJ Disorders

MYTH 1: “TMJ disorders are not common.”
Although TMJ isn’t something people talk about often, it’s not a rare condition. Research shows that about 12% of the U.S. population is affected by some form of TMJ disorder.

MYTH 2: “You don’t have TMJ disorder if your jaw doesn’t pop.”
TMJ disorders and their symptoms vary from one individual to another. You may still have a TMJ disorder if you experience chronic neck pain, headache, backache, stiffness of the jaw, tension, and soreness in the jaw joint. Some individuals even experience a loss of balance.

MYTH 3: “TMJ disorders are completely harmless.”
While TMJ disorders are not exactly life-threatening conditions, they shouldn’t be ignored. Without proper treatment, these disorders can potentially wreak havoc on your life. For instance, you’ll experience pain and discomfort around the jaw joint and the areas that surround it.

Additionally, if your TMJ issue was triggered by bruxism, you’re more likely to suffer decay and tooth loss due to the grinding of teeth and clenching of the jaw that will eventually wear down the enamel. Aside from this, TMJ disorders may also trigger hearing issues, vertigo, and balance problems, which reduce your ability to complete your daily tasks.

Teeth Demo

MYTH 4: “TMJ disorders are caused by accidents.”
Countless people are diagnosed with TMJ disorders after suffering whiplash from car accidents. However, disorders related to the TMJ may also be caused by stress, a misaligned bite, and teeth grinding. Your dentist has to take your past medical history and make a thorough analysis of your jaw before they can identify the cause and create a customized treatment plan for you.

MYTH 5: “TMJ disorders are permanent.”
Contrary to what you may have heard, TMJ disorders aren’t permanent. Your dentist can help you find the cause of your specific case of TMJ disorder and find the proper treatment that suits your unique needs. For example, orthodontic treatment may fix your TMJ disorder if its underlying cause is a misaligned bite.

Lady With Jaw Pain

On the other hand, if your TMJ disorder was caused by trauma or an accident, your dental health care provider may recommend a surgical procedure to realign your upper and lower jaw. TMJ disorders that are triggered by stress and anxiety can be treated by medication and therapy.

Wearing an oral appliance is strongly recommended by dental health practitioners. As you wear this appliance over your teeth, it works to reduce the stress on your jaw while it protects your teeth from damage caused by your TMJ disorder.

Looking for the Best Dentist in Omaha?

You don’t have to suffer from TMJ disorder. At Dentistry for Health, we strive to create confidence by using a collective interdisciplinary approach to create a naturally beautiful smile designed to support your holistic health. Our management of your condition is tailored to your needs and desires. Contact us today to book your appointment.

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The Relationship Between Periodontal Diseases and Diabetes

Scientific evidence on the links between periodontal diseases
and diabetes

Have you ever wondered if it’s true that the dentist telling you that too much sweets is bad for your teeth? This paper outlines the connection between periodontal disease and diabetes, and it would really seem that the dentists were right all along!

In this paper, we take a closer look at the relationship between periodontitis and diabetes, and consensus guidelines for physicians, oral healthcare professionals and patients to improve early diagnosis, prevention and co-management of diabetes and periodontitis.

Read the study here

lady receiving orthodontic treatment

The Role of Vitamin D in Periodontal Health,
Oral Health and General Immunity

Vitamin D and Oxidative stress

In this article, we will attempt to outline the significant role of Vitamin D and other antioxidant vitamins in the role of immune health with specific emphasis on periodontal health and healing following any biomedical procedure.

At Dentistry for Health, in order to optimize your procedure results whether that be orthodontic treatment, extractions, crowns or TMJ/airway treatment, we encourage balanced nutritional care. Vitamin D is known to be therapeutic in the limiting of oxidative stress.

lady receiving orthodontic treatment

The first question I will address is “What is oxidative stress and why does it cause cell degeneration and poor wound healing?”

Oxidative stress is the accumulation of toxic reactive oxygen species (ROS) molecules. ROS are highly reactive chemical molecules formed due to stress. They are important molecules in the repair process of our cells during situations of acute need.

However, if the ROS accumulate in our bodies and are not adequately broken down and eliminated, they can lead to chronic inflammatory diseases, rapid aging and irreversible damage to our DNA.

Oxidative stress has many identifiable contributing factors such as smoking, aging, poor diet, diabetes, emotional stress, alcohol abuse, periodontal disease and poor sleep. To combat oxidative stress, all cells in our bodies require an intrinsic store of molecules known as antioxidants which prevent long term tissue damage.

lady holding neck

When our bodies are low in antioxidants, our ability to heal and prevent significant tissue damage is impaired. Vitamin D plays an important role in supporting the immune system to enhance healing and in the prevention of the damage of oxidative stress.

Vitamin D is also involved in biomaterial integration and other metabolic processes such as bone and soft tissue remodeling.

Unfortunately, a large percentage of the population today suffers from vitamin and mineral deficiencies directly linked to antioxidant levels. Specifically, The Endocrine Society found that 70% of all of the general US population is deficient in Vitamin D.

Vitamin D comes from exposure to the sun and from food sources such as fresh caught salmon, tuna and egg yolks. Normal serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25-OH) is a reliable marker of vitamin D status, and a level below 20ng/ml defines deficiency. Optimal levels above 30ng/ml are required to maximize health and tissue healing.

The Endocrine Society advocates and intake of 1,500-2,000 IU/day for adults and obese patients should take 3 times more than the normal adult daily vitamin dose.

Written by Robin Khan

Tight Frenums:
An Easy Explanation

What are tight frenums?

Ankyloglossia:
Ankyloglossia is often referred to as “tongue tied,” and is described as an abnormal shortness of the frenum located under the tongue which limits the tongue’s normal movement. It can interfere with oral, facial and airway development, feeding, speech and swallowing, and can create long term problems associated with these functions.

When one opens their mouth and elevates the tip of the tongue, one can clearly see the lingual frenum, (also referred to as a frenulum); the cord that attaches the tongue to the floor of the mouth. In some cases, the frenum might be visible but too short to allow full tongue movement. In other cases, the shortened frenum might not be visible at all, and is then defined as submucosal anklyloglossia.

A labial attachment can be viewed by lifting the upper lip and examining the tissue cord that attaches the upper lip to the upper gum tissue.

What are the causes of tight frenum attachments?
The exact causes of tight attachments are not known, but often times there is a genetic component.

How are tight lingual attachments classified?
There are several ways to classify tight frenum tissue but the most important aspect of tight tissue is the functional ability of the tissue it is connecting.

Why the concern?

Ankyloglossia can seriously affect an individual’s health at any age. To experience what ankyloglossia feels like, try to talk and eat while keeping your tongue on the floor of your mouth. You can see it is very challenging. In infants ankyloglossia can be associated with breast feeding difficulties, failure to thrive and difficulty with the introduction of solid foods.

In children, it is associated with “sloppy” eating due to difficulty chewing food and moving it around in the mouth, impaired articulation of words, poor oral hygiene, dental problems, such as incorrect tooth eruption or excessive crowding of teeth, or a change in the development of the face and jaw. Most significantly, a strong emergence of incorrect compensatory habits such as tongue thrusting may develop.

In adults it is associated with poor sleep, misarticulating of sounds, clicking or pain in the jaws, migraines, negative effects on social situations such as eating out, kissing and relationship development. Dentally, tight tissue may be associated with inflamed or receding gums, crowded teeth, cavities or broken teeth.

How can tight frenum attachments be treated?

Once a frenum restriction has been diagnosed, a recommendation may be made to have a lingual frenum release through a frenectomy, also know as a frenulectomy or a frenotomy. It is a simple procedure using local anesthetic. Most of the time it takes less than 5 minuses and causes little post procedure complications.

What is the role of an oral myologist?

We commonly recommend with children, teenagers, and adults, that one consult an oral myologist prior to surgery. Post-procedure, the myologist with prescribe home based daily exercises to avoid scarring and ensuring the tongue remains untethered and begins to regain the strength lost from the restriction of the frenum. Once the tongue is released it will be able to move around the oral cavity properly and begin to hold a posture to promote healing of any symptoms the patient may have been having related to the tethered tissue as well as begin promoting proper development of oral facial structures.

In addition, muscles of the tongue may be weak from being anchored to the floor of the mouth. Specific exercises are given to strengthen the muscles of the tongue to assist the tongue in moving vertically and achieving appropriate tongue resting postures. Achieving appropriate tongue resting posture and recapturing dental space is essential.

Release of an attached frenum can eliminate a tongue thrust that may accompany a restricted lingual frenum. Improved chewing and swallowing skills are important for a person of any age. Incorrect speech patterns, incorrect tongue placement at rest, and swallowing functions will likely not correct themselves. Over the years, individuals with tight frenums develop strong abnormal habits to compensate for the tongue being attached to the floor of the mouth.

A habit is not something easy to change, and most people are not aware of their improper tongue position. An oral myologist with experience in tongue posture can be helpful in learning correct placement of the tongue for articulation, while eating, drinking and swallowing.

Research has shown that by releasing a “tongue tie, ” airway issues such as upper airway resistance and obstructive sleep apnea are often improved.

Address
10365 Pacific Street, Omaha, NE 68114
Contact
Phone 402-932-0282
Fax 402-932-0373
Email info@dentistryforhealthomaha.com
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