The Three Types of Gum Disease | Wilmington Dentist

You just found out that you have gum disease. Bummer, right? Nearly 75 percent of people in the United States are right there with you. Though typically caused by not practicing proper oral hygiene, some cases are caused by certain medications, hormonal changes, etc.

Gum disease, or periodontal disease, is an inflammation of the gums caused primarily by the bacteria found in plaque. If the plaque isn’t removed by practicing proper oral hygiene, the bacteria can end up severely infecting a tooth enough to need extraction. There are three different stages of periodontal disease: gingivitis, periodontitis, and advanced periodontitis.

Gingivitis. This early stage of gum disease is mainly due to plaque buildup and can cause the gums to bleed. Gingivitis is the only stage of gum disease that is reversible, but only through dental care and by practicing proper oral hygiene at home.

Periodontitis. Typically irreversible, your gums start to form pockets below the gum line, where food and plaque can get trapped, making the condition worse.

Advanced Periodontitis. This is very final stage of gum disease where the bacterial infection has not only affected your teeth, but has also destroyed the fibers and bone supporting your teeth. This can lead to your teeth shifting or loosening, which affects your bite.

As mentioned before, bleeding and inflamed gums are some of the first signs of gum disease. Bad breath is also commonly associated with gum disease. If you notice any symptoms, visit your dentist as soon as possible.

For further information regarding gum disease, call Dr. Leo J. Kituskie, DMD for an appointment today at (302) 994-4900. Visit our website to learn more at implantperiocare.com.

Dr. Leo J. Kituskie proudly serves Wilmington and all surrounding areas.

How to Maintain a Healthy Mouth | Wilmington Dentist

When we have a dental emergency, we know exactly where to go. But if it doesn’t hurt, chances are we aren’t bothering with a dental visit. Unfortunately, when it comes to our dental health, it is our job to take care of things. We schedule dental appointments to make sure things are going smoothly, but it’s honestly our duty to make the effort to maintain our smiles. So, if you find out that you have dental issues, it’s time to think about how well you are taking care of your teeth. Here are some quick tips to avoid a bad dental report card:

Brush. Use a toothbrush with soft bristles. If you’d like a more thorough cleaning, consider an electric version. Brush for at least 2 minutes, in gentle circular motions so as not to irritate your gums.

Floss. Use 18” worth of floss and make sure that you are using a clean area between teeth to prevent the spreading of any infections you may already have.

Mouthwash. Mouthwash loosens any debris, making your mouth cleaner than by merely brushing.

Tobacco. Avoid tobacco products. We all know tobacco of any sort is bad for us, but it is especially bad for our mouths. Ingesting tobacco products can further irritate any infection you may have, making you more susceptible to further issues.

Sugar. It may taste sweet but having too much sugar in your diet will cause lots of dental issues if you don’t look after your teeth. Limit it as much as possible and be sure to brush after you indulge.

For further information regarding dental issues, call Dr. Leo J. Kituskie, DMD for an appointment today at (302) 994-4900. Visit our website to learn more at implantperiocare.com.

Dr. Leo J. Kituskie proudly serves Wilmington and all surrounding areas.

Do You Have Gum Disease? | Wilmington Dentist

At some point in our lives, the chances of us developing some type of gum disease is pretty high. While we are doing well at keeping up with our daily dental hygiene routine, there is still a chance gum disease can develop, including:

  • Hormonal changes, such as those occurring during pregnancy, puberty, menopause, and monthly menstruation, make gums more sensitive, which makes it easier for gingivitis to develop.
  • Diseases such as cancer or HIV, because they interfere with the immune system. Diabetes’ effects on the body’s ability to use blood sugar makes patients at a higher risk of developing infections, including dental ones.
  • Medications can disrupt the flow of saliva, which helps to cleanse our teeth and gums naturally.
  • Bad habits such as smoking make it harder for gum tissue to repair itself.
  • Family history of dental disease can be a contributing factor for the development of gingivitis.

The problem is, gum disease may progress without producing obvious signs, making it even more important to keep all of your dental appointments. Gum disease may affect only certain teeth, such as the molars. Only a dentist or a periodontist can recognize and determine the progression of gum disease. Here are common warning signs:

  • Gums that bleed during and after tooth brushing
  • Red, swollen, or tender gums
  • Persistent bad breath or bad taste in the mouth
  • Receding gums
  • Formation of deep pockets between teeth and gums
  • Loose or shifting teeth
  • Changes in the way teeth fit together upon biting down, or in the fit of partial dentures.

For further information regarding gum disease, call Dr. Leo J. Kituskie, DMD for an appointment today at (302) 994-4900. Visit our website to learn more at implantperiocare.com.

Dr. Leo J. Kituskie proudly serves Wilmington and all surrounding areas.

Don’t Let Them Say I Told You So | Wilmington Dentist

You’ve done it – you’ve finally made it to college. No more parental nagging in your ear because you are one step closer to be a full-fledged adult. Yes, it is a great time to be alive. Being a college student means you’re busy with sports, studying, classes, clubs and social functions. And while you time begins to become consumed with schoolwork, finding the time to think about oral hygiene or visit your dentist may be forgotten. After all, wasn’t mom the one that did that stuff for you all these years? Unfortunately, there is the problem – some of the most damaging things you can do to their oral health happen to be extremely common among college students, so this is the time you need to really make an effort to keep your oral health in mind. Drinking energy drinks to pull an all-nighter, late night snacking, drinking alcohol and forgetting to brush your teeth are all typical activities in the life of a college student. So, what is a college student to do?

Start the year off right and schedule a dental appointment now. Not only will you set yourself up nicely with a deep cleaning for the year ahead, you can also get some tips from your dentist in order to keep things healthy in between checkups.

It may sound like a lecture, but student health is important now that you are on your own. Keeping your teeth and gums healthy now will help to ensure you have healthy teeth when you are old and grey.

For further information regarding dental health, call Dr. Leo J. Kituskie, DMD for an appointment today at (302) 994-4900. Visit our website to learn more at implantperiocare.com.

Dr. Leo J. Kituskie proudly serves Wilmington and all surrounding areas.

Keep Their Little Smiles Healthy | Wilmington Dentist

When you become a new parent, you do everything you possibly can to prepare for every situation. Unfortunately, there is truly no real way to prepare. And while there are plenty of resources to turn to for answers to the never-ending list of questions, one that seems to slip our minds is their oral health. It’s easy to forget – babies aren’t born with teeth.

When to expect teeth. The two lower front teeth should erupt around 6 months of age, followed by the two upper center teeth. The remaining will appear in no predictable order – but all 20 baby teeth should be present by 3 years of age.

When to visit the dentist. You should make sure the first appointment is within 6 months of the first tooth appearing, but definitely before the child’s first birthday. The first visit is typically a checkup to look for signs of decay, check the bite, and look for problems in the gums, jaw, and tissues within the mouth. The dentist will take this opportunity to provide guidance on topics such as brushing, fluoride, teething, and problems like thumb sucking.

When to start brushing. Just like adults need to brush twice a day, parents also need to brush the teeth of young children. Your child’s first toothbrush should be a soft-bristled brush with a small head. As an infant, you should clean the gums with a soft brush and water. Once teeth appear, start brushing twice a day with non-fluoride toothpaste. Once your child can spit, you can transition to fluoride toothpaste.

For further information regarding pediatric dentistry, call Dr. Leo J. Kituskie, DMD for an appointment today at (302) 994-4900. Visit our website to learn more at implantperiocare.com.

Dr. Leo J. Kituskie proudly serves Wilmington and all surrounding areas.

Don’t Start the Year with Gum Disease | Wilmington Dentist

Have you been experiencing persistent bad breath or perhaps notice a loose tooth? Periodontitis, also generally called gum disease or periodontal disease, begins with bacterial growth in your mouth. If left untreated, could lead to tooth loss due to destruction of the tissue that surrounds your teeth. Only a dentist or a periodontist can recognize and determine the progression of gum disease. Plaque is the primary cause of gum disease, but other factors can contribute to periodontal disease as well, such as smoking, poor dental hygiene, diabetes and pregnancy.

Here are some warning signs that can signal a problem:

  • Gums that bleed easily
  • Permanent teeth that are loose or separating
  • Red, swollen, tender gums
  • Persistent bad breath or bad taste
  • Gums that have pulled away from the teeth
  • Changes in the way your teeth fit together when you bite
  • Changes in the fit of partial dentures

If you find that you have developed any of these symptoms, make a dental appointment as soon as possible. Because so often it goes unnoticed, having symptoms arise may indicate more of an issue than you think. Only your dental professional can identify and properly treat these issues, so dental examinations are imperative for maintaining healthy gums.

Keeping your gums healthy requires a daily oral hygiene routine of brushing twice a day, using a mouthwash, flossing and maintaining a healthy diet. So, as you are making your new year resolutions, make sure you add proper dental hygiene to the list. Prevention is your key to oral health success.

For further information regarding gum disease, call Dr. Leo J. Kituskie, DMD for an appointment today at (302) 994-4900. Visit our website to learn more at implantperiocare.com.

Dr. Leo J. Kituskie proudly serves Wilmington and all surrounding areas.

Wine Prevents Cavities? | Wilmington Dentist

During the holiday season it is tough to keep all of our typical routines in check. Avoiding sugary sweets and regular brushing and flossing top the list of steps to take to avoid tooth decay, but other lifestyle habits, and even some foods and beverages, play a role in cavity prevention, too. Work some of these little tricks into your regular and pass those dental appointments with flying colors!

Cheese. Some researchers believe that casein, a protein found in cheese, may have a protective property that promotes healthy teeth and could help with cavity prevention.

Chewing gum. Chewing sugar-free gum has long been recommended to avoid cavities. And sugar-free gum made with xylitol, a natural sugar substitute, seems to be even more of a winner.

Wine. It may cause stains on your teeth, but one study suggests that many of the individual chemical components in both red and white wine can actively fight the bacteria that lead to tooth decay and cavities.

Raisins. Scientists have found that some of the chemicals present in raisins, including polyphenols and flavonoids, may actively fight oral bacteria that lead to cavities.

Using a straw. A study at Temple University in Philadelphia discovered that you can minimize damage to healthy teeth by sipping that soda through a straw.

Dental sealants. To prevent tooth decay, many dentists recommend dental sealants, a protective coating that’s applied to the surface of the back teeth.

Good oral and dental hygiene can help you avoid cavities and tooth decay, but these six cavity fighters will also make sure your mouth is as clean and healthy as possible in between dental checkups.

For further information regarding cavity prevention, call Dr. Leo J. Kituskie, DMD for an appointment today at (302) 994-4900. Visit our website to learn more at implantperiocare.com.

Dr. Leo J. Kituskie proudly serves Wilmington and all surrounding areas.

Gum Disease | Bad Things Come in Sets of Three | Wilmington Dentist

If there is anything we try to do at all times, it’s look after our health. But the one aspect of our health we tend to forget is our oral health. Unfortunately, our oral health is very important to our health overall. If you’ve recently been told that you have gum disease, you are not alone. It’s been estimated that nearly 75% of Americans have some form of gum disease.

But how do we get gum disease anyway? Gum disease is caused by bacteria found in plaque, the sticky colorless film that forms on your teeth. If this plaque isn’t removed by preforming proper oral hygiene habits, plaque will build up and the bacteria will infect every aspect of your mouth. There are three stages of gum disease: gingivitis, periodontitis and advanced periodontitis. Let’s take a look at each and how your mouth will be affected…

Gingivitis. This is the inflammation of your gums and teeth that’s caused by plaque buildup at your gum line. This is the only stage of gum disease that can be reversed, since the bone and connective tissue are not yet affected.

Periodontitis. Once periodontitis occurs, the supporting bone and tissues structures are irreversibly damaged. Your gums will start to form pockets below your gum line, which traps plaque and food.

Advanced Periodontitis. This is the final stage of gum disease, where the tissue structures and supporting bones are destroyed, which can cause you teeth to shift and loosen, affecting your bite.