Harmonize the Smile
For Seniors and Special Needs
Harmonizing the bite to protect tooth wear, or Occlusal Analysis, is one of the most important components in keeping a mouth healthy. Bite, or occlusion, is the way our teeth function or interact when we close our mouths or when we chew. This is the relationship between the upper and lower teeth. In a situation when a person’s bite has poor function, a person can develop:
- Periodontal Problems
- Broken, chipped or fractured teeth
- TMJ problems (TMD, or Temporal Mandibular Disease)
- Chewing difficulties
An occlusal analysis may be the source to discover current or potential dental problems. For example, an increased frequency of lost fillings or broken teeth for no apparent reason may be a sign of a collapsed or unstable bite. Improper occlusions, or bad bites, often result from:
- Teeth mal-alignment
- Grinding, clenching, or occlusal trauma
- Unrestored missing teeth
- Uneven skeletal jaw growth
- Teeth crowding
Sometimes the grinding or clenching habit can be occuring without any noticeable signs or symptoms. Grinding and/or clenching causes teeth wear, flattening, and, at times, even fracture. Over time as this occurs, the functional relationship between the upper and lower teeth deteriorates even further, increasing the intensity and incidence of the detrimental habit.
Teeth need to be sharp and pointed to cut through food; this is their primary purpose. As the sharp cusps are abraded away and become blunt, chewing becomes less effective. Greater burden on the digestive system develops as improperly chewed food is swallowed.
At Joyful Dental Care, great attention is placed on a properly balanced bite. Impressions for are taken for bruxism appliances to ensure fit and alignment. Please ask us how this works for you!
One person dies every hour from oral cancer in the United States — and the mortality rate has remained unchanged for more than 40 years. Late detection of oral cancer is the primary cause that both the incidence and mortality rates of oral cancer continue to increase. As with most other cancers, age is the primary risk factor. Though tobacco use is a major predisposing risk factor, 27% of oral cancer victims have no lifestyle risk factors. According to the American Cancer Society, more women in the US will be diagnosed with oral cancer than cervical cancer. Also, there are as many cases of oral cancer caused by the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV 16/18), a sexually transmitted disease, as there are HPV-related cases of cervical cancer. Clinical studies have determined that using ViziLite Plus after the standard oral cancer examination improves the dentist’s ability to identify and evaluate suspicious areas at their earliest stages. Early detection of pre-cancerous tissue can minimize or eliminate the potentially disfiguring effects of oral cancer and possibly save your life. ViziLite Plus is an easy and painless examination that gives this practice the best chance to find any oral abnormalities you may have at the earliest possible stage. Oral cancer risk by patient profiles is listed below:
|Increased risk:||Patients 18-39|
|High risk:||Patients 40 and older Tobacco users younger than 40|
|Highest risk:||Patients 40 and older and lifestyle risk factors|
Famous people who have oral cancer in common: Babe Ruth, Sigmund Freud, Aaron Spelling, Humphrey Bogart, Lana Turner, Eddie van Halen, Rod Stewart, Sammy Davis, Jr., Jim Thorpe, George Harrison. Visit Vizilite at www.vizilite.com
The VELscope is a hand-held device that provides dentists and hygienists with an easy-to-integrate adjunctive mucosal examination system for the early detection of a wide variety of oral diseases, including pre-cancer and cancer. Used in conjunction with the conventional intra-oral and extra-oral head and neck exam, the VELscope facilitates the discovery of mucosal abnormalities before they become visible under ordinary light. The VELscope is the only non-invasive adjunctive device clinically proven to help discover occult oral disease.
The VELscope system helps dental professionals visualize abnormalities in the mucosal tissues of your lips, mouth and upper throat. In just two minutes, with no rinses, stains or discomfort, a VELscope examination lets healthcare professionals improve their assessment of your overall oral health.
Make sure that your mouth is as healthy as it can possibly be. The next time you visit your dentist or hygienist, ask for a VELscope exam.
How Does the VELscope Work?
The VELscope handpiece emits a safe blue light into the oral cavity, which excites natural fluorophores from the surface of the epithelium through to the basement membrane (where premalignant changes typically begin) and into the stroma beneath, causing it to fluoresce. The VELscope’s proprietary filter makes fluorescence visualization possible, by blocking reflected blue light, and by enhancing the contrast between normal and abnormal tissue.