Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Tariq Drabu Shines a Light on Gum Disease

When it comes to oral conditions there are several, including oral cancer and tooth decay that we as a society know of, but don’t fully know about. This is something that we at Tariq Drabu Dentists think is a problem; after all, if we don’t know about the potential harm we could be inflicting on our smile, how will we ever prevent it. Knowledge is power, as the old saying goes, and right now, a fair portion of the British public could be called powerless. That’s why this week we want to shine our light on gum disease; keep reading if you want to find out how this condition can form, why it is so bad for your oral health and what can happen if it’s allowed to linger without treatment.

Gum disease, also known in popular discourse as gingivitis, is a condition where you gums become swollen, sore and infected and it’s a condition that’s actually more common than you think, with statistics revealing that up to 15-20% of the world’s population have to deal with some form of gum disease at some point in their life, and the estimation for the British population is much higher. In Britain it is estimated that half the adult population has some form of gum disease.

Symptoms of gum disease may be bleeding gums when you brush your teeth and bad breath, and this is at the earliest stages where it is still preventable. However, the condition doesn’t stop there and if gum disease is allowed to go on unchecked for a significant period of time it has a strong possibility of developing into periodontitis, a condition which affects the tissue that holds your teeth in place; this can lead to loss of teeth. If this particular condition goes untreated, it can lead to the loss of supporting bone around the teeth, which opens up space between your teeth and gums, further increasing the chance of losing your teeth.

So, now you know what gum disease can do; how do you prevent it? Well, the first thing is obvious; brush your teeth. Brushing your teeth gets rid of the products left behind on your teeth from everyday life, and prevents the build-up of plaque, a primary cause of gum disease. However, it also helps to avoid certain foods such as sugary sweets and drinks such as highly sweet carbonated soft drinks, plaque feeds on these and this can increase the risk of gum disease. It’s also important to avoid cigarettes as they carry a huge risk of the development of gum disease.

So there you have it; gum disease has many causes and many effects and it’s a disease that is not always preventable, even if you’re the picture of oral health. If the worst comes to the worst, you need to come to Tariq Drabu Dentist to get advice on how to treat it.

Monday, 28 October 2013

Tariq Drabu Zooms in on Dental Health After a Cigarette

At Tariq Drabu Dentists we act to make sure that you maintain a healthy smile for the duration of your adult life; this means we act to make sure you know what is good and what is bad for your dental health. Recently the EU has acted to pass legislation that would further restrict smoking; among other things banning 10 pack cigarettes, and as a dentist, I feel that this is very good news.

This is because, even though things like carbonated drinks and coffee are bad for your teeth, smoking is infinitely worse. The detrimental effects of smoking on your oral health are numerous and persistent, and you have to be aware of them. Check out all the reasons how cigarettes can damage your mouth below.

Discolouration… Tobacco and the chemicals in cigarettes as well as the tar and nicotine can have a huge impact on the colour of your teeth; it can literally turn them yellow. Anybody who has seen the teeth of a long term smoker will know just how strong this discolouration is, as heavy smokers will often see them turn brown.

Oral Cancer… The idea that smoking can cause cancer is a persistent one, that’s because it can. However, it’s not just lung cancer as smoking can carry a serious risk of developing oral cancer as well.

Gum Disease… The chemicals in cigarettes, as well as the tar can carry a serious risk of gum disease as they attack the gums on a constant basis; in the worst cases this can lead to bleeding gums and even tooth loss. Smoking can also affect blood flow to the gums, which complicates the healing process.

Leukoplakia… This is a condition where white patches develop on the tongue and in the mouth and is caused by irritation of the mucous membranes in the mouth. It can lead to further oral problems and can easily be caused by smoking, as smoking increases the risk of developing the condition. Some leukoplakias are in fact pre cancerous.

Bad Breath… Do we really have to explain this one? Smoking plays havoc on your breath, it literally smells like an ashtray; and can seriously affect your social life, as well as your standing at work; who wants to be around someone with ash breath?

Plaque… Hardly desirable, plaque tend to build up on the teeth due to unhealthy habits, and not only is it unattractive, it can lead to the development of many oral problems, such as tooth decay. Smoking increases the accumulation of plaque and brushing your teeth can only keep this form of plaque at bay for so long.
So there you have it, there are six of the top reasons why smoking causes significant harm to your oral and dental health. It is important to note two things here. Firstly, these aren’t the only problems, there are many more. Secondly, nicotine is the cause of some of these problems, so don’t think switching to an E-Cigarette is going to reduce the risk of all of them; however since most of these problems are primarily caused by the chemicals and tar in cigarettes, E-Cigarettes are a step in the right direction.