Johns Family Dentistry

My Gums Bleed! What Does This Mean?

So, you see a little blood while you brush and floss and you think it’s nothing because it doesn’t hurt. Well, in reality, it is your body trying to tell you something. It’s a warning sign that your gums are inflamed. What is this “inflamed” business you ask? Well, inflammation is your body’s natural defense system when we are sick or injured. It can be a swollen ankle or foot from a sports injury but it can also be swelling around infections and disease. So, what does inflamed gums have to do with our oral health? Great question and a very important one.

Our gums surround our teeth and play a vital role to our ability to smile and eat. The bone that lies around the teeth are effected by the gum tissue that lay over it. If the gum tissue isn’t health, the bone underneath it mirrors that. So, what happens to the bone when the gum tissue is unhealthy. A WHOLE LOT! If the gum tissue is so inflamed and is trapping harden bacteria (aka tartar), your bone slowly disintegrates- it literally goes away. If there isn’t good bone around your teeth, you get LOOSE teeth. This is the “gum disease” or periodontal disease and it can start from some bleeding gums!

So, how do I take care of my bone and gums. It’s quite simple and you have heard it from grade school. Good brushing and FLOSSING. With good home care and routine visits to Johns Family and Implant Dentistry in Puyallup, we can prevent gum disease from destroying your bone. So, the early signs of gum disease is a little blood while you brush and that’s when we want to nip it in the bud and prevent further progression of the disease.

The Negative Effects of Mouth Breathing

WE ALL KNOW WHAT it’s like to have a cold, with a nose so stuffy that you can’t breathe through it. At times like that, we breathe through our mouths instead, and that’s pretty much how it should work. Mouth-breathing is an emergency backup, not the default. There are many negative effects of mouth-breathing full-time, particularly if the habit begins in childhood.

Why Does Mouth-Breathing Become A Habit?
Many things can lead to a mouth-breathing habit. A small child might get a cold and then simply continue breathing through his mouth when his nose clears. A problem with bite alignment can make it difficult to keep the mouth closed. Persistent allergies, overlarge tonsils, or a deviated septum could make nose-breathing difficult or impossible most of the time. Fortunately, these problems can often be solved by orthodontic treatment or surgery.

Why Mouth-Breathing Is A Problem
In the short term, mouth-breathing leads to a variety of issues, including:

Dry mouth: mouth-breathing dries out the mouth, removing the first defense against oral bacteria. This can lead to consequences such as chronic bad breath and tooth decay.
Lack of energy: getting less oxygen by breathing through the mouth will result in poor sleep quality and lowered energy levels overall. For kids, this means difficulty paying attention in school, and for adults, work productivity can suffer.
The negative effects of mouth-breathing don’t stop in the short-term. They can actually be life-altering, particularly when the habit begins in childhood and goes unchecked.

Facial structure: mouth-breathing can actually lead the bones of the face to develop differently, yielding flat features, drooping eyes, a narrow jaw and dental arch, and a small chin.
Sleep apnea: the risk of sleep apnea goes up with mouth-breathing, and this can make it difficult to get a restful night’s sleep.
Orthodontic treatment: the narrowed dental arch of a chronic mouth-breather rarely has enough room for the full set of adult teeth, and this will require orthodontic treatment to correct.

The Benefits Of Nose-Breathing
Breathing through the nose doesn’t just help you avoid the effects of mouth-breathing; it comes with additional benefits too! Here are just a few of them:

The nose acts as an air filter, delivering clean air to the lungs and reducing the amount of allergens that get in.
Nose-breathing produces nitric oxide, which helps with oxygen absorption and sterilizes the air.
Nose-breathing strengthens the immune system by activating immunoglobulin production.
Need Help Building Healthier Breathing Habits?
If you or your child has a mouth-breathing habit, it can be tricky to break, especially if the cause is a physical obstruction that requires treatment. Schedule a dental exam with Johns Family and Implant Dentistry right away so the cause can be detected and you can get on the road to healthier breathing and all the benefits that come with it!

5 Tips To Avoid Periodontal Disease

When the bacteria responsible for plaque and tooth decay build up underneath the gum line, they produce toxins that damage the connective tissues that keep teeth firmly in place. This is called periodontal disease, a serious condition that can lead to tooth loss. Fortunately, there are many things you can do to keep your gums and teeth healthy. Here are five tips for preventing gum disease.

1. Brush Longer

Use fluoride toothpaste to brush your teeth at least two times a day, preferably after meals. Take your time when brushing, carefully scrubbing near the gum line. Brushing correctly should take two or three minutes.

2. Floss Every Day

Flossing isn’t just for removing food stuck between your teeth. It also helps to prevent plaque formation in places the toothbrush can’t reach. It’s important to get into the habit of flossing every day.

3. Use High-Quality Mouthwash

A trustworthy mouthwash can kill the bacteria that cause gingivitis and periodontal disease. It’s not designed to replace brushing and flossing, but to enhance their effects. Always look for the American Dental Association Seal of Acceptance on mouthwash.

4. Eat Healthy Foods

Your body needs the right minerals, vitamins, and nutrients to take care of gums. Some vitamins boost your immune system, helping fight oral bacteria. Others are involved in creating new gum tissue, strengthening your teeth, and improving blood flow to the gums. Here are several essential vitamins for vibrant gum tissue:

Vitamin D
Vitamin A
Vitamin C
B Vitamins

For example, vitamin C improves gum healing, while vitamin D increases the amount of calcium available for bones and teeth. In addition to getting positive nutrients, it’s also important to cut down on sugary foods. Mouth bacteria feed on sugars to create plaque.

5. Avoid Tobacco Products

Cigarettes can lead to gum disease. They also put you at risk for oral cancer. Tobacco can increase the amount of plaque on teeth, speed up bone loss, slow down healing, and harm the gums directly.

Plaque is one of the biggest enemies of healthy gums. A big part of avoiding periodontal disease is preventing plaque from forming. If you follow these gum care tips every day, a regular dental checkup is usually all that’s needed to clean any leftover plaque from teeth.

When to Schedule a Visit With Your Dentist

Always paying attention to the warning signs of periodontal disease. This can help you catch minor issues before they become more serious. It’s a good idea to schedule an appointment with our dental professionals if you notice these symptoms:

Gums that bleed easily
Purple or deep red gums
Swollen gum tissue
Bloody saliva after brushing or flossing
Gums that appear to shrink or recede
Bad breath

These early issues can indicate the beginning of gum disease. As it progresses, other problems can appear that warrant calling a dentist immediately. For example, if any teeth become loose or wobbly, or fall out, contact a periodontist as soon as possible. Pus, pain when chewing or bite changes are also signs of serious dental health issues.

Contact the Experts at Johns Family and Implant Dentistry Today!

At Johns Family and Implant Dentistry in Puyallup, our gum health professionals can provide an in-depth periodontal examination to check for signs of gum disease. Modern technology gives us a close look at areas of the teeth normally hidden from view, such as underneath the gum line. After this exam, we can take great care of your gums with a complete periodontal cleaning. This includes removing tartar and plaque and polishing tooth surfaces. To learn about patient financing options and specials, or to schedule an appointment with an expert periodontist, contact our friendly team right away.

How Does Dental Health Affect Overall Health?

Many people make the mistake in considering dental health as a separate component from physical and even mental health. In actuality, each of these is highly interconnected and can set off a chain reaction for better or worse, depending on how well you take care of your body. It’s a much better paradigm to consider your health comprehensively and take care of it as such. Though we frequently hear that proper dental hygiene and care is essential, it’s not so often that we hear why this is so.

Johns Family and Implant Dentistry answers these questions in the context of dental health as well as explaining how dental, physical, and mental health are all integral to each other.
Dentist and patientAs organic beings, humans are host to many naturally-occurring bacteria or microorganisms. For most people, healthy habits such as proper nutrition and good hygiene are enough to keep things in balance and under control. Oral care including proper brushing, regular flossing as well as regular dental check-ups help the body’s natural defenses keep these levels in check. However, when people relax on these proper dental routines, this can allow the ‘bad’ bacteria to excessively proliferate, possibly leading to numerous different health issues.

Researchers have found that there are billions of bacteria inhabiting the average person’s mouth; Dr. Walter Loesche from the University of Michigan estimates around 20 billion. Some oral bacteria was also found to proliferate in ideal conditions every 5 hours. However, brushing your teeth and your tongue can help prevent this proliferation. But Dr. Loesche warns, “There are 20 billion bacteria in your mouth and they reproduce every five hours. If you go 24 hours without brushing, those 20 billion become 100 billion!” To put it in perspective, that’s more than 14 times the amount of people inhabiting this earth!

Besides being a fascinating ‘petri dish’ of bacteria, why does this matter? If bacteria is left behind without proper brushing, it begins to form plaque, a sticky, invisible residue comprised of bacteria. If left longer still, this plaque develops along the gumline into calcified build-up called tartar. Mineral build-up in saliva can also contribute to the development of tartar. Either way, both tartar and plaque can begin to irritate the gingiva, or the part of the gums at the base of your teeth. The irritation can lead to red, swollen gums given to bleeding easily, noted especially during teeth brushing or cleaning.

When gums become swollen and inflamed, this condition is known as gingivitis. If left untreated, the worst case scenario is that the gingivitis will lead to periodontitis, or gum disease.

Periodontitis is serious for several reasons. At this stage, the inner lining of gum and bone incur damage, causing them to pull away from the tooth/teeth. This forms a gap or a pocket which is most inviting for bacteria to collect. As this toxic bacterial environment proliferates, the body’s immune system is triggered to fight the infection. In more serious cases of periodontitis, the damage caused by both the toxins and the body’s attempts to destroy the bacteria continue to affect the surrounding tissue, weakening the tooth’s support system and eventually leading to tooth loss.

Here we see the most obvious connection between oral and physical health. With chronic inflammation and irritation, harmful bacteria are more likely to enter the bloodstream and take up residence in other places of the body.

For people with strong immune systems, the risk factors of a more serious complication are less. However, for those with compromised immune systems, these circumstances can present an endangerment to their health.

The following are some of the more serious complications resulting in the spread of bacteria through the bloodstream:

Cardiovascular Disease: The traveling bacteria can affect the arteries of the heart and contribute to atherosclerosis, or hardening of the arteries. Plaque in the form of cholesterol and other substances collect in these areas which can eventually restrict or even block blood flow, resulting in heart attack or stroke. Researchers at the University of North Carolina discovered that people with gum disease were twice as likely to die of heart attack, and three times as likely to die from a stroke.

Endocarditis: Endocarditis is an infection of the inner lining of your heart. This can result from bacteria spreading through the bloodstream and attaching to your heart.

Respiratory Infections Bacteria traveling through the bloodstream and settling in the lungs can escalate into respiratory infections like pneumonia or chronic conditions like Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD).

Diabetic Complications Diabetes and gum disease are more interconnected than most other complications from gum disease. Bacteria thrive on sugars, which people with diabetes have trouble controlling. Those who are less stringent with their diabetic care can promote these problems more easily. The blood vessels of people with diabetes are typically thicker, which slows down the delivery of nutrients through the bloodstream, as well as slowing the movement of waste and toxins away from their source. Consequently, gums and bone tissue can weaken and become more susceptible to infection. However, people who adhere to proper diabetic care and are able to reduce blood sugar levels see a correlated improvement in their oral health as well.

The above-described are the more serious consequences of a chain reaction from poor oral and dental care. However, the reverse can happen as well.

Sometimes, certain diseases or chronic conditions of the body can affect a person’s dental health, even if they practice good oral hygiene. In particular, diseases or conditions that involve a compromised immune system such as cancer, HIV, Crohn’s, Down’s Syndrome, etc. make a person more susceptible. The body’s reduced ability to fight off bacteria lead to increased infections and inflammatory conditions. In other cases, such as osteoporosis, periodontitis is caused by overall increased bone deterioration.

Mental health is also affected by proper oral & physical health care, for various reasons. Often times, when a person’s physical health is poor, their psyche reacts accordingly. With chronic or severe health conditions especially, a person may feel frustration, despair, or even anger. Studies have shown people that depressed spirits or a negative/cynical attitude slows the healing process, as opposed to the uplifting effect of a more positive outlook.

Additionally, people with dental health problems may feel insecure about their teeth or their smile. With our culture’s emphasis on appearance, this can contribute to self-esteem issues as well.

For all of these reasons, it is crucial to have regular dental check-ups. As we discussed, some conditions cannot be prevented with good oral hygiene alone.

Johns Family and Implant Dentistry encourages you to take charge of your health. Whether you are seeking a dentist, needing to switch to a new one, or just want to make an inquiry, our compassionate staff is here to help. We realize it can be difficult to make a trip to the dentist, but our goal is to make you as comfortable, happy, and healthy as we can.

We are accepting new patients. Please contact our Johns Family and Implant Dentistry practice to schedule an appointment or discuss any questions or concerns. We look forward to hearing from you!

Dental Anxiety

How Can I Overcome Dental Anxiety?

The first and most important step in overcoming dental anxiety is to build a trusting relationship with a dentist. By communicating your fears, your dental team will be able to work with you to address and manage your specific concerns

Dental Anxiety: Why Does It Happen & How We Resolve It

Millions of people experience a phenomenon known as dental anxiety, which can prevent them from seeking the essential oral health care everyone needs. Dental anxiety is a real problem, and if you suffer from it, you know how crippling it can be. While it seems like your anxiety is telling you to ignore the dentist, we want to encourage you to confront your fears with new knowledge and helpful tools to cope.

What is Dental Anxiety?

Dental anxiety is a state of apprehension, anxiety, or fear produced by the thought of an impending dental appointment. Some also call this condition dental fear or dental phobia. Odontophobia, literally fear of the dentist, is a recognized condition according to the World Health Organization (WHO). They estimate that fifteen to twenty percent of the population suffers from dental phobia or anxiety.

We often absentmindedly use these terms interchangeably, but in truth, “anxiety” and “phobia” indicate differing levels of severity. A person with mild dental anxiety may commit to consistent dental visits but exhibit signs of stress during the visit, such as high blood pressure, sweating, irritability, etc . . . However, someone with a severe dental phobia may suffer from panic attacks before even entering the dental office.

While many with mild dental anxiety may be able to rationalize and fight their fears in relation to which procedures they need to undergo, someone with severe phobia is too terrified to even call and schedule an appointment.

Who is Most Susceptible to Dental Anxiety?

Dental anxiety can affect anyone, but certain groups of people may be particularly susceptible. Past experiences, stories we hear, and the perceptions of our loved ones all shape the way we respond to the need for dental care.


Children often fear new experiences, and the sights and sounds of a dental office can be intimidating. A parents’ reaction to visiting the dentist plays a large role in the way the children perceive dentistry. Parents who suffer from dental anxiety are very likely to pass this on to their children.

Mental Health Disorders

Those who suffer from any mental health conditions have a greater risk for experiencing symptoms of dental anxiety too. Mental health disorders may cause people to assume the worst-case scenario or have extreme paranoia towards the unknown. This can lead them to fear and cause them to avoid situations in which they cannot be in control, such as dental visits.

Major Dental Treatment

It goes without saying that the more extensive the necessary dental treatment is, the more likely we are to feel anxiety regarding an upcoming appointment. Patients who have neglected dental care for some time may require considerable treatment on many teeth. The prospect of such long, invasive appointments can cause significant fear and/or anxiety.

Bad Experiences in the Past

When someone has a negative experience with a dentist, it can influence our view of every dentist, assuming all future encounters will be similar. Often, these bad experiences occurred during childhood, and the powerful memories can induce a lifetime of fear.

What are the Signs and Symptoms of Dental Anxiety?

Those who suffer from dental anxiety often miss the warning signs because they can be subtle and seemingly unrelated to an upcoming dental visit. The manifestations of dental anxiety can be different for each individual. You may experience one or more of the following:

·       Restlessness or trouble sleeping the night before a dental visit

·       Feeling tearful or sad before, during or after a dental appointment

·       Flushed cheeks

·       Fast heartbeat

·       Elevated blood pressure

·       Sweating despite a cool room temperature

·       Feeling angry or easily irritated

·       Fainting or dizziness

·       Consistently missing dental appointments or canceling them at the last minute

Why Do I Have Dental Anxiety?

It can be easy to understand why many suffer from dental anxiety, whether it is caused by a fear of the unknown or a past negative experience. But what exactly are dental phobic patients afraid of? The most common triggers are thoughts of pain, the injection of local anesthetic (the “shot”), or choking or gagging during the procedure. These are quite understandable fears, especially if you have experienced trauma or stress from these things in the past.

Aside from physical discomfort, some patients are more bothered by the sounds of a dental handpiece (the “drill”). Many others fear putting themselves in the control of another person because they lack a trusting relationship with their dentist. Patients have also shared with us a fear of being shamed or ridiculed for the poor state of their dental health. Any reason for fear is valid and overcomable once identified.

While there can be aspects of a dental visit that are relatively uncomfortable, the risk of a true injury is extremely rare. Research estimates that the risk of death during a dental procedure is about one in ten million!

Why is it Necessary to Cure or Treat Dental Anxiety?

The biggest problem with dental anxiety is that it often causes people to avoid essential dental care. This can become a vicious cycle in which avoiding the dentist increases anxiety, and increasing anxiety leads to greater avoidance of necessary care. The longer someone goes without dental care, the worse his or her oral health will become. The worsening state of dental diseases only increases dental fears and anxieties because of the knowledge that worsening disease requires more extensive treatment, thus heightening dental anxiety even further.

In addition to worsening dental disease, avoidance of the dentist makes you more unfamiliar with the sights, sounds, and other sensations of a dental visit, leading to an ever-worsening fear of the unknown. The longer you stay away, the more scary any dental procedure seems in your mind, and the more difficult it becomes to return to the dentist again.

We do not mean to imply that someone with severe dental phobia should simply power through and force themselves into receiving dental care. We understand the truly uncontrollable nature of some anxieties. If a patient is faced with a severe phobia, we advise you to seek professional help through therapy or medication so you can safely undergo necessary dental care.

Is There a Cure or Treatment for Dental Anxiety?

There are many treatments for dental anxiety, and there are many compassionate dentists who will work with you to help you overcome your fears and receive the essential oral health care you need. Because dental anxiety ranges widely in its causes, manifestations, and severity, the treatments also range widely. These can be as simple as meditation or prayer, or as detailed as single-step dental treatments utilizing sedative medications.

However, the first and most important step in overcoming dental anxiety is to build a trusting relationship with a dentist. By communicating your fears to a compassionate dentist, they will be able to work with you to address and manage your specific concerns. Here are some suggestions to find a dental practice that can help ease your anxiety.

An Attentive Team

A large part of dental anxiety comes from a fear of not being in control. By understanding the various aspects of your dental treatment and trusting that your dental team will allow you to take breaks or ask questions throughout the visit, you can regain some sense of control. Tell your dentist your concerns, and they should respond with kindness and a desire to help. Don’t be shy about asking questions regarding your treatment until you understand the procedure. Communication plays a very important role in fighting dental anxiety.

A Practice with Modern Technology

If you have not sought dental care in many years, you will be happy to learn that improved technology has made many dental procedures less invasive and more comfortable for patients! From the initial check-in process, to impressions and digital imaging, dentistry has modernized to make appointments shorter, safer and more enjoyable for our patients. Ask your dental practice what new procedures they’ve implemented since your last visit.

Options for Comfort and Convenience

Many dentists offer amenities to help anxious patients relax, including headphones with music to listen to or shows to watch, blankets, and neck pillows. Some dentists can also provide those requiring more than just physical comfort with sedative options. Laughing gas is a mild anxiety-reducer that does not have any lingering effects, allowing you to drive yourself to and from your dental appointment. Deeper sedation is also available, so that you sleep through your entire visit and remember almost nothing!

Dental Anxiety: Your Next Steps

If dental anxiety has kept you from seeing a dentist in recent years, your next step is finding a dentist you trust. Building trust can take time, but you can expedite that relationship building in a few ways. Read online reviews to understand the experience of other patients in your community. Schedule an interview with the dentist so you can assess your own impression of his or her compassion and communication before they provide you treatment. And ask questions about how this dentist handles patients with dental anxiety.

Don’t be afraid to start small. When you’re ready, schedule a relatively short and non-invasive procedure first, then work your way toward the more extensive treatments you need. We want every patient to receive the dental care he or she needs to be healthy for life!





Toothache Symptoms, Causes and Treatments

What is a toothache or tooth pain?

Tooth pain, also known as a toothache, occurs when the nerves within or surrounding a tooth become inflamed or irritated, resulting in discomfort.  
What are the symptoms of a toothache?

Toothaches are often characterized by one or more of the following symptoms:

*Pain resulting only when pressure is applied to the tooth or when you bite down
*Swelling around the tooth or of the jaw
*A foul taste in the mouth caused by drainage from the infected tooth
*Sensitivity to cold or heat
*Tenderness or ache in or around your tooth

What causes tooth pain?

Tooth pain, or toothaches, can arise from various causes, including improper tooth development in young children, minor injuries such as biting into a hard object or aggressive flossing, as well as more severe underlying conditions.

Painful or sensitive teeth can be the result of tooth fractures, periodontal disease, or dental decay.

Causes of toothaches may include:

*Tooth Decay. Tooth decay is the most common reason for a painful toothache. However, for the tooth and the surrounding area to be in pain, the tooth decay would need to be significant enough to reach the inner layer of the tooth (the dentin). When this has happened, the tooth becomes very sensitive and a cavity has formed.

*Abscessed Tooth. When tooth decay advances to the point of affecting the root beneath theTooth decay illustration with hand that has numbing ointment on finger visible part of the tooth, there’s a high probability that the root and the surrounding tissue have become infected, resulting in widespread, pulsating pain.

*Tooth Fracture. Teeth can be cracked or chipped in many different ways. If you’re experiencing pain in a fractured tooth, the fracture has made its way to the middle of the tooth where the nerve endings are. Note that this may not happen as soon as the tooth is damaged, but can develop over time as the damage becomes worse.

*Damaged Filling. A dental filling protects vulnerable parts of a tooth and, when it becomes damaged, the sensitive parts of the tooth are exposed to extreme temperatures, food particles, and bacteria. This can result in pain that can be anywhere from dull to sharp.

*Grinding Teeth. Teeth grinding is a common cause of tooth pain and can lead to sore jaw bones and joints, headaches, and even cracked or chipped teeth.

*Toothaches can also result from the loss of a tooth, such as after an extraction, when the nerves of surrounding teeth have been jarred or exposed.

Sometimes tooth pain is pain from other areas that has radiated to the jaw, where it seems to be a toothache. Ear pain, sinuses, and the temporomandibular joint—or jaw joint—can all develop pain that, over time, may seem to originate at the tooth.

How long will a toothache last?

There is really no way to tell how long a toothache will last. If it is simply the result of biting or brushing too hard, it may subside immediately or shortly after. If it is caused by something more serious, the pain may come and go, but never really go away completely.

Chances are if you are experiencing tooth pain or sensitivity, there is probably an underlying reason that needs attention. Putting off going to the dentist will most likely exacerbate the problem, leave you in pain longer, or even progress into something else even more painful. When in doubt, schedule a visit with your dentist so he or she can identify the cause of your pain and provide some appropriate treatment options.

When should I be worried about my tooth pain or toothache?

If your toothache pain is severe, does not respond to over-the-counter pain relief, or lasts longer than 1 or 2 days, you should consult your dentist. Another cause for concern is if you are also experiencing an earache, fever, or pain when opening your mouth.

How is toothache treated?

The toothache treatment options depend primarily on the cause of the tooth pain, which can only be determined by a dentist. If your dentist determines a cavity is causing your discomfort, you will need to have the cavity filled or the tooth extracted. If the tooth’s nerve is infected, you may need antibiotics and/or a root canal. A root canal is a dental procedure that removes the infected pulp of a tooth—the nerves and blood vessels inside the tooth—then cleans and seals the tooth.

There are things you can do at home to treat your tooth pain while you wait for an appointment. Avoid very hot, cold, or hard foods, and use an over-the-counter pain medication like ibuprofen or acetaminophen to relieve pain and reduce swelling.

Treating Toothaches and Tooth Pain with Johns Family and Implant Dentistry

Don’t let toothaches or tooth pain keep you down. Johns Family and Implant Dentistry makes getting the dental care you need fast, easy, and convenient. From routine dental cleanings and checkups to emergency dental care, Johns Family and Implant Dentistry’s caring and professional staff in Puyallup, South Hill, Sunrise are ready to help. Schedule your appointment today.

Zoom Whitening

Zoom is one of the best teeth whitening treatment that you can receive.

When you visit our dental office for Zoom teeth whitening, you can be confident that your smile will be whitened by eight shades or more. This is the most dependable way to improve the appearance of your smile without undergoing major dental work. In fact, we can complete this procedure on your lunch break; so everyone has time for a whiter smile. If you try a solution at home, it could take weeks for the process to be complete, and your teeth still will not be as white.

How Zoom teeth whitening works

When you visit our family dental office, we will meet with you and examine your teeth and gums to determine if they are healthy enough for a cosmetic treatment. If you have gum disease, cavities, or an infection, we want to treat this first so that you are in good oral health and to prevent you from experiencing any unnecessary sensitivity.

Once cleared for the procedure, these are the steps that we will take:

Clean and polish your teeth to ensure that the whitening gel is being placed on clean teeth, rather than plaque buildup.
Protect your lips with a special lip cream to avoid irritation.
Place a retractor in your mouth to help pull back the lips and expose the teeth.
Next, you will bite down and rest your tongue on a cup that was placed in your mouth with the retractor.
We will use a shade guide so that you can determine how white you want your teeth to be.
After taking a photo of your teeth, we will place gauze inside of your mouth and a bib around your face, while giving you protective eyewear to use. This step can take a few minutes to ensure that the only area exposed to the whitening solution is your teeth.
Next, we will place a protective solution on your gums.
A protective solution is applied to your teeth and then the whitening gel is evenly brushed on.
As a Zoom whitening dentist, we will shine a special laser light on your teeth to activate the whitening solution. This can usually take about fifteen-minutes so that we can examine your teeth throughout the process, reapply the whitening solution, and wipe away any access to ensure that your gums are not irritated. This is repeated until we are confident that your teeth are as bright and as white as you wanted them to be. A benefit of checking your teeth every fifteen minutes is that it gives us control over how white your teeth become. There is no such thing as a perfect smile or the right shade of white – only what you find attractive and beautiful. With that in mind, we do our best to ensure that the final shade of your teeth is one that you are pleased with.

Once the process has been completed, we will wipe away any remaining whitening gel, remove the gauze and protective barrier then rinse your mouth. We can also apply a finishing product and will take a picture so that you can compare your teeth before and after the Zoom whitening treatment has been completed. The entire procedure can be completed during your lunch break so that you can have a gorgeous smile right away.

Puyallup Tooth Whitening
Zoom is better than whitening strips or over the counter treatments you can buy in the store.

At Johns Family and Implant Dentistry, we recommend whitening your teeth with the Zoom teeth whitening solution because your teeth will become whiter faster than if you try a kit at home. We will also ensure that your teeth are healthy and prevent any unnecessary sensitivity. This is a significant benefit of whitening your teeth under the supervision of a dentist. If you whiten them at home, you risk overexposure to the whitening solution and your teeth becoming sensitive as a result. Simultaneously, most over the counter solutions like whitening strips, trays, or toothpastes will only remove the surface stains on your teeth. Most of the staining and yellow comes from under the enamel so you need a whitening solution that will penetrate it. Our Zoom solution penetrates the enamel and begins the process of oxidization so that the molecules inside of your teeth reflect less light and appear colorless. This is what produces dramatic results. Most people that whiten their teeth at home see improvements but not to the degree that makes a significant impact. This is mostly due to the quality of the solution that is used while in some cases, like with whitening toothpaste, it is also because the solution is not on the teeth long enough.

Do I Have Sleep Apnea

What is sleep apnea?
Sleep apnea is a condition that makes it difficult for your body to receive the oxygen you need to properly function. Without enough oxygen, you will feel drained and sluggish, but since the condition manifests itself at night, most people have no idea that they have it.

How does sleep apnea impact a person’s health?
There are many health problems that can arise from untreated sleep apnea. They can include a stroke, high blood pressure, headaches, diabetes, depression, mood swings, heart failure, ADHD that becomes worse, and an overall lack of well being.

How does sleep apnea negatively impact a person’s life?
With enough oxygen, your body will have a difficult time functioning. Beyond the health effects, this can translate to not having enough energy to stay awake past dinner, enjoy your kid’s birthday parties, go for a bike ride, or even drive your car. In fact, when you are tired, the basic and often mundane activities of life can put you to sleep. This can make it dangerous to get behind the wheel and could compromise your work performance. Essentially, your quality of life can be greatly diminished, making it critical that you visit a Puyallup dentist to have your sleep apnea treated.

What is the difference between sleep apnea and a sleep disorder?
Sleep apnea is a physical condition that makes it impossible to breathe clearly while you are sleeping. As a result, your body will not get enough oxygen to function at an optimal level. A sleep disorder can be one of the following:

Insomnia. When it comes to sleep disorders, insomnia can be long-term or temporary. Often brought on by external factors like stress, insomnia can be treated with an oral medication.
Narcolepsy. As a sleep disorder, narcolepsy is by far the worst. It can impact you throughout your entire life, making you feel so exhausted that you are forced to suddenly fall asleep, regardless of where you are or what you are doing. Narcolepsy is a true life disrupter.
Restless leg syndrome. Commonly impacting pregnant women, restless leg syndrome can force your legs to move all throughout the night. Giving you a feeling of constant tingles or a burning and itching sensation, RLS can be highly distracting and impact anyone at any time. It helps to go for a walk or exercise during the day, since those who are sedentary tend to experience RLS more frequently.
Jet lag. While most people view jet lag as a part of long-distance travel, it is a real sleep disorder, and if your body does not adjust well to the changes in time zones, jet lag could impact you for days or even weeks if you continue to travel from place to place. This disruption in your sleep patterns can make it difficult to get caught up on the rest you need, and may leave you feeling worn down to the point of potentially getting sick. Fortunately, this condition will eventually rectify itself when you get back home and stop traveling.
Snoring. If you snore too loudly, you could wake up your Dallas neighbors, your spouse, or just yourself. Many people cannot get a good night’s sleep because they snore too loudly, and this condition is often brought on by sleep apnea.What are the two main types of sleep apnea?
Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA). When you have obstructive sleep apnea, your lower jawbone muscles will be too weak to hold your jaw in place as you sleep. As a result, it can fall backward and your tongue with it. Your tongue will then block your airway, making it impossible to breathe clearly while sleeping. This is why people with OSA will typically snore or sound like they are choking in their sleep. This is one of the signs that the body is trying to move the tongue in order to breathe. Another cause of OSA is having too much fatty tissue in the back of your throat. This is one reason obesity is a risk factor for OSA.
Central Sleep Apnea. In this condition, the brain is responsible for the sleep apnea. By not sending signals to the muscles in charge of breathing, your body fails to respond as it should. This is not something that can be treated by a dentist, but instead, you will need to see a specialist.
How is sleep apnea treated?
At Johns Family and Implant Dentistry, we recommend that patients explore all non-invasive treatment options first. This is why we will often suggest that our Puyallup, WA patients wear a removable oral appliance. An oral appliance is a convenient treatment option because it does not make any noise and is incredibly discrete. Some patients also require the use of a CPAP machine to provide them with additional oxygen. The challenge with a CPAP is that it can be loud and uncomfortable to wear. The third treatment option for OSA is to have surgery to remove the extra fatty tissue blocking your airway.

How does an oral appliance work?
Wearing an oral appliance is incredibly easy. It is customized for your mouth specifically so it fits snugly and securely. As a result, you can simply slip it into place when you go to sleep. It remains in place inside of your mouth and does an excellent job of holding your lower jaw in the forward position. This prevents your tongue from falling backward and keeps your airway clear. Some people receive all of the benefit they need by wearing an oral appliance, while those with severe sleep apnea may also require the use of a CPAP machine at the same time. In this case, most patients report that their CPAP is far more comfortable than when they were using it as a standalone treatment option.

Why Does My Jaw Hurt?

Almost everyone experiences occasional pain in their jaws at some point. This is normal and doesn’t necessarily mean anything is wrong with your mouth. However, if the pain persists for more than a few days, it might indicate something is amiss.

This article will discuss jaw pain, what causes it, how to treat it, and when you should see Dr. David Johns in regards to it.   Keep reading to learn more!

What Is Jaw Pain?
Jaw pain is a general term for any discomfort in the jaw area and is characterized by a dull ache or throbbing sensation. It could be caused by an injury, infection, inflammation, toothache, TMJ disorder, or stress.

The pain can be felt anywhere along the jawline, including the teeth, gums, cheeks, chin, and neck. Sometimes, the pain radiates into the ear canal. If the pain lasts longer than a week, call us at 253-848-3723,  to schedule an appointment.

Why Does Your Jaw Hurt?
Several reasons can cause sudden pain on one side or the left side of your jaw. Here are some of the most common ones:

#1. Trauma
Injuries to the face, head, or body can cause trauma to the jaw. This includes injuries from accidents, sports, work-related incidents, falls, etc.

Over-the-counter medication can usually be used to relieve the pain temporarily. However, if the pain continues after a couple of days, or you cannot open or close your mouth normally, you should seek medical attention. Dr. Johns may recommend an X-ray to rule out other issues, such as broken bones or dental problems.

#2. Oral Health Issues
One-sided jaw pain is often linked to dental issues such as gum disease, tooth decay, impacted wisdom teeth, grinding your teeth at night, abscessed teeth, and crooked or misaligned teeth.

Visit Dr. Johns immediately if you suspect that these conditions are causing your jaw pain. They will be able to diagnose the problem quickly and provide treatment options, including prescription medication.

#3. Sinusitis
Inflammation in the nasal cavity can cause sinusitis and this inflammation can cause chronic pain in one or both sides of your jaw. If you have sinusitis, you may experience facial pain, headaches, nasal congestion, and tenderness around the eyes.

Sinusitis usually gets better within a week without any specific treatment. However, if your medical condition does not improve, you should consult your healthcare provider.

#4. Cluster Headaches
A cluster headache is characterized by severe, unilateral pain that starts in the forehead and moves down toward the nose and cheek. It usually affects the eyes and temple but can also cause pain in the jaw. Cluster headaches are excruciating and can last up to several hours.

There are many triggers for cluster headaches, but they tend to occur during stressful situations. You can try relaxation techniques like meditation and yoga to help reduce the frequency and intensity of your attacks.

#5. Heart Attack
As odd as it sounds, heart attacks can sometimes cause jaw pain, but as referred pain. Referred pain is where the pain travels away from its original location. So if you feel a sudden, severe pain in your jaw, call your doctor immediately. It’s better to be safe than sorry!

#6. Tumors and Cysts
Tumors and cysts can also cause jaw pain. Tumors are abnormal growths of cells that can form in the jawbone or soft tissues around it. Cysts are fluid-filled sacs that can form in the jawbone or soft tissues.

Both tumors and cysts can cause pain, swelling, and tenderness in the jaw area. If you experience any of these symptoms, it is important to visit your doctor for a proper diagnosis.

#7. Stress and Anxiety
Stress and anxiety can also cause jaw pain. When we are stressed or anxious, our body releases hormones that can cause muscle tension in the jaw area. This tension can lead to pain and discomfort in the jaw muscles.

To reduce stress-related jaw pain, try relaxation techniques such as deep breathing, yoga, and meditation. You can also talk to a therapist or counselor if you need help managing your stress and anxiety levels.

#8. TMJ Disorders
TMJ disorders are one of the most common reasons for jaw pain. Temporomandibular joint disorders (or TMJ) affect the jaw joints which connect the lower jawbone to the skull. The joints work as a hinge mechanism that allows us to move our jaws. When this joint becomes inflamed or damaged, it causes pain and discomfort.

The most common signs of temporomandibular disorder include clicking sound when opening and closing the mouth, pain while chewing, difficulty sleeping due to jaw pain, and pain in the jaw muscles and ligaments.

Dr. Johns can treat minor cases of jaw pain using over-the-counter medications. If the pain persists, they may refer you to a specialist specializing in treating TMJ disorders. Common treatment options for TMJ disorder include physical therapy, wearing a mouth guard, and lifestyle changes.

When To See a Doctor for Jaw Pain
You should see your primary care physician if your jaw pain is accompanied by additional symptoms, such as fever, swelling, or extreme sensitivity to touch. This could indicate a more severe problem that needs immediate treatment.

You should also visit Dr. Johns if:

You notice changes in your bite
You have trouble eating or swallowing food
You are experiencing persistent pain that lasts longer than two weeks
It’s important to remember that there are many different types of jaw pain. Some people only experience mild pain or discomfort, while others suffer from severe pain that affects their quality of life.

If you think you might be suffering from jaw pain, you should visit your Dr. Johns immediately. He will examine and determine whether you need further tests or treatments.

Tips on How to Alleviate Jaw Pain
If you suffer from mild jaw pain, you don’t need a medical professional to treat your condition. Instead, you can use these tips to alleviate the symptoms.

Take over-the-counter pain medication.
Use ice packs to relieve muscle soreness.
Avoid chewy foods and try to eat soft foods instead.
Rest your jaw and avoid stress.
Massage your face gently to relax tense facial muscles.
Get TMJ Treatment at Strull Oral Surgery
If you suspect that a TMJ disorder causes jaw pain, you should consider getting a TMJ treatment. At Johns Family and Implant Dentistry, we we work closely with some of the best TMJ specialists in our area.  Contact us today to schedule your appointment.

Replacing Missing Teeth

When you have lost teeth or face the loss of all or some of your teeth, you have lots of questions. Rightly, so! Losing and replacing teeth is serious business, and you want to get them replaced correctly the first time. Here are some common questions and answers about missing teeth and tooth replacement options.

Why Do People Lose Teeth?
People lose teeth for a variety of reasons. You might have lost your teeth due to an accident that caused trauma to your mouth, whole-body illnesses, gum disease, or tooth decay. In all cases, we have options to replace your missing teeth. You never have to worry that you’ll have to go without a single tooth for the rest of your life. Although, your replacement teeth will need to be taken care of. So, if you lost your teeth due to gum disease or teeth decay caused by poor oral hygiene, you’ll need to commit to keeping your mouth healthy from here on out.

How Do I Prevent Tooth Loss?
Preventing tooth loss can be as simple as developing a healthy oral care routine or protecting your teeth when you play contact sports or other activities where you might experience tooth trauma. Be sure to brush your teeth twice a day, floss, use mouth wash, and visit your Puyallup dentist twice a year for cleanings and oral exams. Keeping up this healthy habit will reduce your risk for gum disease and tooth decay. You’ll even reduce your risk of whole-body illnesses, such as diabetes and heart disease.

If you play a contact sport or have a hobby where you could experience tooth trauma, wear a mouthguard while you participate. This will place a protective barrier around your teeth and save you from losing or damaging your teeth.

What Are My Options For Replacing Missing Teeth?

A 30 something woman with a missing tooth.

When it comes to replacing missing teeth, you have options.

Dental implants
All-on-4 dental implants
Dental Bridges

Dental implants and dental bridges are great options if you’re missing only a tooth or a few teeth. If you’re missing an entire arch or mouth of teeth, all-on-4 dental implants or dentures are better options. We’ll go over your health history and discuss which option is best for you. At Johns Family and Implant Dentistry in Puyallup, you never have to be afraid to ask questions. We know tooth loss is emotional, and we’re here for you every step of the way.

What Do I Do If I’ve Lost All My Teeth?
Visit a Puyallup, WA dentist if you’ve lost all your teeth. Dr. Johns and his team are experienced in restorative procedures as well as cosmetic and general dentistry. This means that you’ll get a new attractive, healthy, and functional smile.

Look into dentures or all-on-4 dental implants if you’ve lost all your teeth. These options can replace all the missing teeth in your mouth or a single arch.

Can You Get Porcelian Veneers With No Teeth?
You cannot get dental veneers without teeth. A dental veneer is a cosmetic dentistry option that enhances the appearance of your smile. They’re thin sheets of ceramic material that must bond to the front of natural teeth. Without a tooth to bond to, you can not get veneers.

What Are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are a tooth replacement option that allows you to replace one tooth or many. They are the best tooth-replacement option because they replace the entire tooth, not just the crown. We surgically implant a small titanium post into your jaw bone. Then, we place a ceramic crown on top. The implant acts as a tooth root and takes your bite force, stimulating your jawbone to prevent bone loss.

All-on-4 dental implants are a type of implant. It replaces an entire arch of teeth (top or bottom) on only 4 implants. We place the implants strategically into the thickest part of your jawbone. If you are looking for the option closest to a natural tooth’s function, choose implants in Puyallup, WA.

What Type of Dentures Should I Get?
You can get full dentures, partial dentures, or implant dentures. Which one you choose partially depends on how many teeth you’re missing. If you aren’t missing all your teeth, partial dentures may be for you. Dentures or implant dentures are great options if you are replacing all your teeth or an entire arch.

Implant dentures are similar to all-on-4 dental implants, except a denture sits atop the implants. It’s secured in place, so you have stability when chewing and biting.

Replace Your Missing Teeth in Rochester, MI
If you face the loss of all your teeth or just need to replace a few, you have options in Puyallup. Call (253) 848-3723 to make an appointment with Dr. David Johns.