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Dr. Kovitch Discusses Teeth Shifting and Other Dental-Care Tips during Pregnancy

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Pregnancy

We hear it in our Atlanta based dental office all the time: “I just had a baby, and noticed my teeth have shifted….”

Ever wonder why all of a sudden you have a space between your teeth or now your teeth look crooked? Atlanta Smiles Drs. Kovitch & Giesler explain the reasons this can occur and that it is extremely common. During pregnancy, lots of changes occur.  Not only does your body gain weight and move organs around to make room for the growing fetus, but your bone also changes and your body produces relaxin.  Relaxin does several things, including relaxing your pelvic muscles, making your feet grow and affecting tooth movement.

What Is Relaxin?

Relaxin is a hormone present in both males and females.  Its main action is to increase the turnover of fibrous connective tissues. Thus, this hormone might increase the amount and rate of tooth movement through its effect on the periodontal ligament (PDL).  It increases tooth mobility, thus teeth naturally move towards the path of least resistance.

If you ever visit pregnancy sites like the Bump or Baby Center and search the topic of shifting teeth, you will find this to be a very common issue.  Women can also have other dental issues like TMJ disorders or bleeding gums during pregnancy that should be well-maintained rather than ignored.  In fact, women with periodontal disease are more likely to have a baby before term.

Don’t Wait Until After Your Pregnancy

To address these issues, don’t slack on your regular cleanings.  Be sure to get your teeth cleaned at least twice during pregnancy and floss diligently to care for your gums.  And as far as the shifting teeth goes, don’t wait to fix it till you have all your kids.  Instead, prevent it by being custom-fitted for a retainer at your dentist’s office to wear every time you sleep during your pregnancies and while nursing.

Dental Health Linked to Dementia

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Smiling Dementia PatientWhile researchers have yet to find a direct cause and cure to dementia, they have managed to pinpoint some contributors to the disease. Surprisingly, dental health plays a significant role in the risk for dementia, much more so than previously thought. At Atlanta Smiles & Wellness, a comprehensive dental practice in Atlanta, we understand the role that dental health plays in brain health, and we’re committed to helping our patients optimize their oral care for preventative measures. read more

The Versatility of Porcelain Veneers

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The many uses of porcelain veneersPorcelain veneers are thin shells of porcelain placed over the front surface of teeth to instantly improve their appearance. Veneers are easily the most versatile tool in a dentist’s tool box as they can address an array of cosmetic dental imperfections. Custom-made to match your surrounding teeth, porcelain veneers can help you achieve a smile that is both beautiful and natural-looking. read more

How Gum Disease Affects Your Overall Health

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How gum disease affects your overall healthIn its early stages, gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, may exhibit few visible symptoms. But if left untreated, the disease can lead to tooth decay and/or tooth loss, and may even increase the risk of serious health conditions. read more

The Benefits of Oral Appliance Therapy

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Benefits of oral appliances for sleep apneaAccording to the National Institutes of Health, approximately 12 million Americans have sleep apnea, a disorder characterized by cessations in breathing during sleep. Although sleep apnea is common, many individuals are unaware that they have it. In fact, it is estimated that only 16 percent of people with sleep apnea receive treatment.

The most widely used treatment for sleep apnea involves using a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine to deliver constant and steady air pressure to the airways via a hose and mask worn over the nose. However, drawbacks and limitations of the CPAP machine have made way for more modern treatment alternatives, including oral appliance therapy. read more

Common Myths of Gum Disease

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Gum Disease MythsGum disease myths are much more common than you may believe, and these myths often affect patients’ access to care. The fact is, gum disease is a relatively common disorder that may be associated with other health issues, and having gum disease is not always associated with cavities or tooth loss. read more

Dental Effects of Missing a Tooth

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Dental effects of missing a toothLosing a tooth is never fun, and neither are the aesthetic and health effects associated with tooth loss. There are several potential effects, including issues with speaking, eating, and social interaction. Fortunately, preventative strategies, including regular dental checkups, a proper dental cleaning regimen, and regular cleanings can help prevent or reduce the risk of tooth loss, regardless of age or health status. read more

Signs You Need to See a Dentist

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Signs you need to see a dentistIgnoring common signs of dental health issues tends to result in worsened conditions. When it comes to oral health, intuition and a little good common sense can help reduce future costly complications. Common signs, including jaw pain, newly diagnosed medical conditions, and constant dry mouth, can help you decide if you need to see a dentist. Below Atlanta Smiles & Wellness, a family dental practice in Atlanta, discusses the signs in greater detail. read more

Risk Factors for Oral Cancer

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Risk factors for oral cancerThere are several risk factors associated with oral cancer, including alcohol and tobacco use, gender, and excessive exposure to sunlight. Although some risk factors for oral cancer can’t be modified by lifestyle or personal choices, many risk factors can be changed based on the person’s actions. Decreasing or eliminating tobacco use, for instance, may help reduce the risk for oral cancer as well as other serious cancers. In this blog post Atlanta Smiles & Wellness, a family and cosmetic dental practice in Atlanta, discusses the risk factors and what you can do to decrease your risk of oral cancer. read more

Habits That Harm Your Teeth (And How to Break Them)

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Habits that harm your teethWe all have bad habits. Some of them, particularly those tied to anxiety, can lead to issues regarding the teeth and jaw. Eating throughout the day, nail biting, and jaw tightening/clenching are common examples of habits that may contribute to poor oral health. In this blog post Atlanta Smiles & Wellness, a family dental practice in Atlanta, discusses these habits and how to break them. read more