Health & Wellness Tips

Tired of Traditional Dentures?

Wearing dentures can be challenging for many patients and some patients never get used to them. You have to learn how to eat and speak differently since the muscles have to be retrained. A set of dentures that fits well only has about 30% chewing efficiency as natural teeth and they inhibit taste to some degree.

But there is hope for denture wearers now that implants have 93-95% success rate. Implant supported dentures provide much more stability and an All-on-4® implant supported denture can restore over 90% of natural function. You also do not have to take them out at night and put them in glass jar. “All on 4 dentures are changing patient’s lives,” states Dr. Camacho, “they are very stable and patients can eat just about anything and the boost to self-esteem is a plus since they do not have to be taken in and out. Patient’s can smile, laugh and speak with confidence some for the first time in their lives.” Check out the amazing before and after above. It is hard to believe this is the same patient. You can imagine what a life changing procedure this was for the patient! No slipping or adhesives and the palate is not covered so the patient can better taste food.

Dr. Camacho along with Dr. Robert Lemke work in tandem to bring the life-changing All-on-4 implant supported denture to our patients.

Call today and schedule a consultation to see if you are a candidate for an

All on 4!

Remember This-Caffeine Helps with Alzheimer’s and Dementia

Remember This-Caffeine Helps with Alzheimer’s and DementiaAlzheimer’s is probably the most feared disease as you start to get older witnessed by the amount of jokes and humor about it. But the fact is, Alzheimer’s is difficult to deal with for everyone involved. Feelings of helplessness, frustration and guilt are often felt by family members who have a loved one with Alzheimer’s. Numerous studies over the last decade have shown that coffee drinkers have less dementia. Those who drank three to five cups a day (eight ounce cups) in middle age had a lower risk of Alzheimer’s or other dementia 21 years later than those who drank less…or more. People who drink regular coffee also have a lower risk of Parkinson’s disease. Caffeine is an anti- inflammatory and Alzheimer’s is a disease of inflammation of the brain. It is not just the caffeine that helps protect against Alzheimer’s, since rats who were given just a caffeine solution did not get the same benefits as the rats who were given actual coffee so there are other compounds in coffee that are protective.

Regular or decaf may also help to prevent diabetes which is also linked to dementia. But stay away from sugar and creamer, all of these excess calories can add up to weight gain. Studies also show that the risk of dementia was triple for those who had larger midsection (belly fat) in middle age. The bottom line is that coffee is good for you but also follow common sense, if you have trouble sleeping at night a cup of Joe 2 hours before bedtime is probably not a good idea or if you have uncontrolled high blood pressure caffeine is not a good idea.

Coffee and tea along with foods like blueberries and cherries are very healthy but can stain your teeth. Dr. Edward Camacho at Cosmetic Dentistry of San Antonio recommends brushing as soon as possible after consuming food and drinks that can stain teeth. If brushing is not possible then rinse your mouth. As we age, teeth tend to get darker and more yellow and if you are eating a healthy diet you will be consuming foods and drinks that will stain your teeth. Here at Cosmetic Dentistry of San Antonio we use a proprietary bleaching system called KOR. For the first time, deep seated stains, including some tetracycline, can be eliminated. “Dark and dingy teeth can make you look older”, states Dr. Camacho, “whitening your teeth is an inexpensive way to help bring about a more youthful appearance.”

Allergies and Dry Mouth

Allergies and Dry MouthIt’s that time year again, lots of pollen that is creating havoc on our respiratory systems and have us reaching for antihistamines, decongestants and the tissue box. Antihistamines and decongestants along with a myriad of other medications can cause dry mouth. Breathing through your mouth can also be a cause. Dry mouth is not only uncomfortable but can also affect your oral health. Saliva helps to dilute acids that are produced by plaque (biofilm that builds up on your teeth every 12-24 hours). Without saliva’s buffering abilities, decay can start and spread much faster. It can also contribute to gum disease. Fortunately, there are some things you can do to help counteract dry mouth. Below is a partial list of things you can do at home. Even if you don’t have dry mouth the following recommendations can help cut down or eliminate future decay:

  • Sucking on sugar-free candy or chewing sugar-free gum. We recommend sugar free gum and mints sweetened with xylitol. Spry brand contains the optimum amount of xylitol. It can be purchased at your local health food store (Cost Plus Nutrition in the Vineyards or Whole foods)
  • Drinking plenty of water to help keep your mouth moist. Avoid fruit juices or soda ( both regular and diet)
  • Protecting your teeth by brushing with a fluoride toothpaste or a toothpaste that also contains xylitol such as Oxyfresh and visit your dentist regularly.
  • Avoid alcohol based mouthrinses. We recommend a mouthrinse that contains xylitol such as Oxyfresh which can be purchased at our office or you can purchase Biotene Dry Mouth Oral Rinse at a local drugstore.
  • Breathing through your nose, not your mouth, as much as possible
  • Using a room vaporizer to add moisture to the bedroom air
  • Using  saliva substitute such as Biotene which can be purchased at a local drugstore

Evora Pro is an oral probiotic that is dissolved in the mouth and specifically helps to crowd out bad bacteria that can proliferate in the absence of saliva. Evora Pro can be purchased at our office. One tablet a day is recommended for chronic dry mouth. This product is gluten free but does contain trace levels of milk proteins.

Here at Cosmetic Dentistry of San Antonio, Dr. Edward J Camacho it is part of our mission to provide education and recommendations to our patients to help them keep their teeth for a lifetime. It is what you do on a daily basis that has the biggest affect on your oral health. Poor oral health is now linked to a number of health problems. This only makes sense since virulent bacteria in the mouth are circulated throughout the body.

Regular check- ups and cleanings are also crucial. Schedule your appointment today if you have not been seen in the last year. We look forward to seeing you!

Men and Excess Iron

Men and excess ironIron is an element that is essential for regulation of cell growth and differentiation (The process by which cells become progressively more specialized; a normal process through which cells mature). A deficiency limits the amount of oxygen that is carried to the cells and can result in fatigue, poor work performance, decreased immunity and glossitis (inflamed tongue). It is important that you get enough iron but not too much. Men are much more susceptible to iron excess caused by a condition known as hemochromatosis. Primary hemochromatosis is usually caused by a specific genetic problem that causes too much iron to be absorbed. When people with this condition have too much iron in their diet, the extra iron is absorbed in the gastrointestinal tract and builds up in the body tissues, particularly the liver resulting in damage. Primary hemochromatosis is the most common genetic disorder in the United States, affecting an estimated 1 of every 200 to 300 Americans. Most of the time it goes undiagnosed since symptoms can be vague (chronic fatigue or flu like for example). Often, organ damage has already occurred before the condition is diagnosed.

There has also been recent evidence that excess iron may be linked to heart disease and cancer. Iron stimulates the activity of free radicals. Free radicals are natural by-products of oxygen metabolism. They are thought to inflame and damage coronary arteries and blood vessels that supply the heart. This inflammation leads to atherosclerosis (plaque buildup that blocks the arteries to the heart). Free radicals are also thought to stimulate cancer cells.

Post- menopausal women can also be susceptible to excess iron. Talk to your doctor about getting your iron levels tested. “Serum ferritin” and “transferrin saturation” are recommended. It is important to get both tests done for a more accurate picture.

Only take an iron supplement or a multi-vitamin with iron if your doctor recommends it otherwise it is best to get iron from your diet.

Spinach, beef and oysters are good sources of iron. Only about 3% of men are iron deficient. Supplementing with iron is a case where it may do more harm than good. Visit with your doctor before starting or stopping any supplements.

Here at Cosmetic Dentistry of San Antonio, we are committed to providing you with health and wellness information. The link between a healthy mouth and overall health has been established, you can’t have one without the other. For more healthy tips click on Health and Wellness Tips tab on the right hand side on the homepage of our website.

Smoking and Dental Implants

Smoking & Dental ImplantsThinking about getting dental implants and you are a smoker? In one of many studies, Spanish researchers studied 66 patients who received 165 implants and followed their progress for 5 years. The implant failure rate for smokers was 15.8 percent, compared to just 1.4 percent in nonsmokers, another reason to quit smoking if you are thinking about getting dental implants.

We all know smoking is harmful and can cause a myriad of health problems including loss of teeth. Did you know that keeping your teeth can extend your lifespan by about 7-10 years? That’s right, just spending about 5 minutes a day (total!) by brushing morning and night and flossing once a day can ward off major dental problems along with visiting your dentist for regular cleanings and checkups. Even with good oral hygiene, smoking can damage teeth and raise your risk of oral cancer. If you do lose your teeth then implants can help restore up to 90% of chewing efficiency as natural teeth.

More and more patients are asking for dental implants and they are, in fact, considered the standard of care now. If you are a candidate for dental implants you must be informed even if the dentist does not do implants him/herself.

From single tooth replacement to supporting and stabilizing dentures, dental implants have revolutionized and changed the face of dentistry. We offer implants here at Cosmetic Dentistry of San Antonio and stay on the leading edge of dentistry so you will receive the very best care and have all options available to you.

If you are considering dental implants you need to consider quitting smoking. Not only will your overall health improve your success rate for dental implants will also improve.