dr. simmons

Let’s Put an End to Oral Cancer

Let’s put an end to oral cancer!

Like many people, you may be unaware of how serious this disease is.  It has been estimated that approximately 43,250 people in the United States will be diagnosed with oral cancer this year.

     The victims of oral cancer aren’t just smokers and tobacco users. Though these habits remain major risk factors, the largest percentage of oral cancer patients are young, healthy, nonsmoking individuals that are connected to the HPV virus. The best chance we have for saving lives is through early detection and public awareness.

     April is Oral Cancer Awareness month, and the Oral Cancer Foundation (OCF) has invited us to join them in their national screening campaign to increase awareness.

     Our office will be offering complimentary screenings  throughout the month of April.

     We encourage you to call and schedule an appointment. With your participation, we are dedicated to do our part in reducing the death rate from this disease.

        Call to schedule your free oral cancer screening today!

                                                                                                                                                      South Texas Dental Implants

210-692-0136

 

 

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Should I just pull all of my teeth?

Senior citizen couple.

This question comes up A LOT, and every situation can be drastically different. Certainly the trend these days is to extract teeth and start over with implants, however that is a one way road. What strikes me is how many patients feel they need their teeth extracted when in reality they are in pretty good condition.

Dental implants have changed the lives of many by providing the function they desire and the confidence to smile again. I believe in dental implants, however giving up on teeth is not something to take lightly. Always learn as much as you can about your situation before making such an important decision.

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Gum Disease and Your Heart

Did you know that there is an association between gum disease and heart disease?

Many studies show an as-yet-unexplained association between gum disease and several serious health conditions–including heart disease–even after adjusting for common risk factors.

Gum disease is an infection of the tissues that support the teeth and is a major cause of tooth loss in adults. Below are some of the most important things you can do to avoid gum disease and maintain good oral health (including prevention of tooth decay or cavities):

Brush teeth twice a day with an ADA-accepted fluoride toothpaste.

Clean between teeth daily with floss or an interdental cleaner.

Eat a balanced diet and limit between-meal snacks.

Visit your dentist regularly for oral examinations and professional cleanings.

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What keeps a hybrid denture from breaking?

A hybrid denture is completely supported by dental implants.  Sometimes clinicians are limited in where they can place a dental implant.  This may cause the need for what we call a distal cantilever or extension.

note  distal extensions behind last screw hole on each side

note distal extensions behind last screw hole on each side

The longer this extension, the higher the risk of breakage and possibly bone loss around the last dental implant.  The above bar is a milled titanium bar out of a solid block.  The incidence of breakage with this material and method has proven to be much less than the past methods of cast alloys.  Without a supporting metal frame such as this, any cantilever extension will almost certainly break.

Other factors:

  • Patients with hybrid dentures on both top and bottom jaws can generate as much if not considerably more force than when they had their natural teeth.  This is due to the lack of proprioception that teeth provide when biting down.  This increased force can sometimes be too much for almost any material, therefor material choice, design, and patient education are important considerations
  • ill fitting frame/hybrid to dental implants
  • occlusion (how the teeth come together
  • loose screws

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Existing dental implants

There are well over 15-20 dental implant companies used on a regular basis in the U.S. and many more across the globe (over 284 total!). Each company having many different types and sizes of implants greatly increases the variability that can be found from one dental implant case to the next. These types of dental implants (Titanium root form) have been used for over 50 years now, but over the last 20 years the utilization in most practices has increased tremendously. Many factors result in a patient needing implant maintenance and repair from another office. Finding an office that can properly identify an existing implant and provide any necessary treatment can be difficult..

Helpful tips if you have an existing implant or implants:

-identify the implant company/system (Nobel, Straumann, Zimmer, etc.) that you have by asking the office that placed your implants
-identify the platform or connection (ex., Nobel Biocare has an external hexagon connection, internal conical and hexagon connection, and tri-lobe channel and a few others)
-identify the implant diameter and platform size. An implant diameter can be 3.7mm, but that may not help conclude what platform size the implant has. Most systems will identify platforms by NP (narrow platform), RP (regular platform), and WP (wide platform), therefor, the diameter may only help you determine the platform size indirectly.

Having this information will help and often expedite any future treatment that your implants may require from another practitioner.

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