Category Archives: Preventive Dentistry

Busting the Myth Gum Disease Style | Palm Harbor Dentist

gum disease myth

If there is one thing that patients worry about when it comes to dental visits, it’s hearing they’ve had a bad checkup and need further dental work. One of these issues would be gum disease. While there are four stages to it, early detection is best in order to remedy the situation. Unfortunately, there are loads of myths about gum disease that cause patients to be confused as to how it develops or how to prevent it. With more research indicating that gum disease may be linked to several other diseases, maintaining healthy teeth and g ums have become more and more important, so let’s take a moment to bust the more common myths regarding gum disease:

Bleeding gums are not important.

Red, swollen, and bleeding gums are a telltale sign of gum disease. If you notice bleeding while brushing or flossing, you should schedule a visit with your dental professional to be evaluated for periodontal disease right away.

You don’t need to floss every day.

Having proper oral hygiene is incredibly important, and that includes keeping up with brushing, rinsing and flossing.

A tooth lost to gum disease is lost forever.

While you can’t get a permanent tooth back if it falls out because of gum disease, there is no need to worry about having the gap in your teeth – periodontists use dental implants to replace teeth.

Poor oral hygiene is the only way to develop gum disease.

Good oral hygiene can definitely contribute to the prevention of gum disease, however there are other factors in which having good oral hygiene won’t matter. For example, tobacco use or a poor diet. Both of these can increase your chances of gum disease development.

If you’re interested in learning more about porcelain veneers, contact Dr. Lieberman at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

Easing the Pain of TMJ Symptoms | Palm Harbor Dentist

No one like to have a toothache. For some reason, it feels like pain in our mouths is worse than any other type of pain. But what if it is your jaw that’s in pain? It brings on a whole new set of pain. Not only is it a larger area than a single tooth, but it can cause issues when trying to eat, sleep or other day-to-day activities. Thankfully, it is a condition that is temporary and can be alleviated without surgery.

Individuals suffering from Temporomandibular Joint Disorder, or TMJ, experience many symptoms such as discomfort and pain in areas surrounding the face or jaw. For some it’s a tenderness in the jaw area while some find pain around the ear, others will have difficulty eating or may experience locking of the jaw joint, which makes it tough to open and close the mouth. There are a series of remedies recommended in order to alleviate tension found in those areas. You’ll find that the remedies are simple and can easily done anywhere. Some of these include:

Facial exercises such as stretching, relaxing, or massaging the muscles found around the jaw

Evading actions such as yawning, singing, or excessive chewing.

Learning new stress relieving techniques, including but not limited to meditation, breathing exercises, or personal stress relievers. There are loads of options online you can experience in order to find what best suits your needs.

Formulating an exercise plan in order to increase your pain tolerance.

Dr. Lieberman highly encourages patients suffering from TMJ to follow these few techniques in order to alleviate TMJ pain and symptoms. If symptoms worsen, you are encouraged to schedule an appointment immediately with our friendly staff.

If you’re interested in learning more about TMJ disorder, contact Dr. Lieberman at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

Sleep Your Way to a Healthy Smile | Palm Harbor Dentist

For some of us, going to the dentist is a rather frightening thing to think about doing. There are plenty of reasons one would be nervous about, sitting in the dental chair, and it is a very common fear for many patients. Thankfully, there is help that can get you through these checkups so you can have a healthy smile, regardless of your dental anxiety.

Sedation dentistry, also referred to as “sleep dentistry”, uses medication to help ease and relax patients before or during their dental procedure. There are many methods that can be used in sedation dentistry, and the method used depends on the patient’s needs. Here are the four most common methods of sedation dentistry:

Nitrous Oxide. Nitrous oxide, also known as laughing gas, is combined with oxygen and inhaled through a mask over your nose. This nitrous oxide helps calm the patient’s nerves. This method requires little recovery however, you will still need to have someone drive you home.

Oral sedation. The night before a procedure, the patient will take an oral medication to ensure that you’re calm and relaxed during the procedure. The recovery time for this method is a bit longer, so a ride home will be necessary.

IV sedation. This method is considered to be moderate to deep sedation. This type of dental sedation is administered into the bloodstream, which results in immediate relaxation.

General anesthesia. The strongest method of sedation is general anesthesia. During this type of sedation, the patient cannot be easily awakened until the effects fully wear off. Because it will take a while, making arrangements for a ride home will be wise.

If you’re interested in learning more about sedation dentistry, contact Dr. Lieberman at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

Time to Clean Your Teeth Professionally | Palm Harbor Dentist

We all know proper oral hygiene is important not only for your smile, but for your overall health as well. Regular dental visits are essential for the maintenance of healthy teeth and gums. Regular dental exams and professional cleanings can prevent these and many other health problems. Here are important reasons to have your teeth professionally cleaned:

Prevent gum disease. Gum disease is infection of tissues surrounding your teeth, and one of the major causes of bone loss if left untreated. Regular dental cleanings and good home care prevent it.

Maintain good oral health. Regular dental visits will help your dentist look closely for any signs of problems with your teeth and gums.

Oral cancer detection. Early diagnosis of oral cancer is very important in improving of the prognosis of cancer. When you have dental cleanings, you are also screened for oral cancer.

A healthy smile. When you have a beautiful smile, you feel more confident and satisfied with your being. When you feel confident, your social life improves, and it opens up the door for many possibilities in your career as well.

Brighten your smile. Drinking coffee, tea and wine or using tobacco can stain your teeth. A dental cleaning can remove built-up stains and leave you with freshly polished teeth.

Freshen your breath. Good oral hygiene is the best way to prevent persistent bad breath. Even if you brush and floss regularly, getting a cleaning is a great way to keep your mouth healthy and odor-free.

Maintain good overall health. Experts know that there is a correlation between poor oral health and chronic inflammatory diseases such as: cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and other problems.

If you’re interested in learning more about professional dental cleanings, contact Dr. Lieberman at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

Gum Disease Prevention During a Pandemic | Palm Harbor Dentist

We are constantly getting news about how our world is changing by the day. Makes things feel very up in the air, but there are some things we can do to help keep ourselves grounded during this shaky time. Keeping up our daily dental routines will not only prevent future issues with your smile, but will also help prevent gum disease, which can lead to lot of other issues down the line. Thankfully, there are ways to easily prevent periodontal disease:

Brushing your teeth. The number one way to prevent periodontal disease is to brush after every meal. Avoid brushing only twice a day and have a toothbrush handy. Brushing after every meal prevents plaque from building up in the mouth.

Floss. Flossing is extremely important in preventing periodontal disease because it removes plaque and bacteria that accumulates in the mouth.

A mindful diet. Your diet is key is preventing periodontal disease. For this reason, make the proper substitutions. Replace sodas and junk food with water and veggies.

In extreme cases, patients experience bleeding gums and permanent tooth loss. Periodontal disease is caused by bacteria buildup in the mouth which aids in the formation of a sticky plaque on teeth. Plaque is extremely harmful to individuals because if hardened, patients risk the formation of tartar, which cannot be removed by brushing or flossing. By preventing or treating periodontal disease, you will not only save a significant amount of time and money, but your will save your smile from decay and permanent loss.

If you’re interested in learning more about gum disease prevention, contact Dr. Larry Lieberman, DDS at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

Sleep Your Way Through Dental Appointments | Palm Harbor Dentist

sleep dentistry

Having a healthy mouth is important, but for many of us, there are fears helping us avoid the dentist. Take a moment to ask yourself the following questions:

  • Is your fear of the dentist stopping you from receiving dental care that can improve your oral health and smile?
  • Are you anxious about visiting the dentist?
  • Are you afraid that you might constantly fidget during a dental procedure?

If you have answered yes to the following questions, it is possible that you have what is widely known as Dental Anxiety, or DA. But you need not worry – you aren’t alone. Dental fears are a common reaction to visiting the dentist. Thankfully, the dental industry has developed treatment options that can resolve those fears you may have through the use of sedation dentistry. Dr. Lieberman uses sedation treatments for your dental care because “your comfort and peace of mind are important to us. To help you with a relaxing, stress free dental visit we offer several different types of sedation.” Dental professionals will generally offer three types of sedation – which is used depends on the patient’s needs. These sedation preferences include:

Oral conscious sedation. This option allows patients to take a safe and effective pill prior to the appointment. It is handy to have a driver around afterwards.

Nitrous oxide gas. Also known as laughing gas, this alternative gives you relaxed feeling while receiving treatment, but will wear off quickly once the procedure is complete.

IV sedation. The most intrusive of the options, this option allows patients to be completely unconscious while receiving treatment through medication administered by needle.

If you’re interested in learning more about sedation dentistry, contact Dr. Larry Lieberman, DDS at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

Energize Without Energy Drinks | Palm Harbor Dentist

These days can be trying for everyone involved. Between social distancing and keeping our hands clean, we are looking everywhere to have some type of normalcy. For many of us, energy drinks are keeping us alert and ready to take on the constant updates on our world. The problem is, if you don’t watch your intake, those comforting energy drinks are going to begin to do more harm than good.

Fact is, even if most people know that drinking energy drinks regularly is bad for the body, it seems that the energy boost isn’t all that worth it, especially since it comes at the expense of your beautiful smile. The main root of the problem is a mix of extremely high sugar content and a citric acid pH that’s usually as low as 2.9 all in one drink.

Now, sugar, as we all know, is bad for the teeth. It’s basically the main cause of cavities and a whole bunch of other dental problems. But, it’s the combination of the sugar content and acidic levels that makes energy drinks such a danger to the teeth. Anything acidic, when consumed regularly and in high amounts, can cause damage to tooth enamel, which in time can lead to a myriad of dental problems, including tooth sensitivity, tooth discoloration and pain or discomfort in the teeth.

In addition to minimizing the consumption of sports and energy drinks, plenty of dental professionals recommend chewing sugar-free gum or rinsing their mouth with water after consuming such drinks to promote salivary flow and help the acidity levels of the mouth return to normal. If you choose to brush, wait an hour before you do to prevent spreading the acids.

If you’re interested in learning more about energy drinks, contact Dr. Larry Lieberman, DDS at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

When You Need a New Toothbrush | Palm Harbor Dentist

Good habits begin with a positive beginning. Your dental hygiene is no different. If you start with the right tools, creating a proper hygiene routine will fall right into place. But with so many shapes, sizes and styles of toothbrushes on the market, deciding which kind to buy can be confusing. Here are some tips to keep in mind while shopping for your next toothbrush:

Most dental professionals agree that a soft-bristled brush is best for removing plaque and debris from your teeth. Small-headed brushes are also preferable, since they can better reach all areas of the mouth, including hard-to-reach back teeth

When it comes to the type of handle (such as non-slip grip or flexible neck), shape of the head (tapered or rectangular) and style of bristles (such as rippled, flat or trimmed to a dome shape), pick whatever is most comfortable for you. The best toothbrush is one that fits your mouth and allows you to reach all teeth easily.

For many, a powered toothbrush is a good alternative. It is important that your teeth get scrubbed well and an electric toothbrush gives a vibrating scrubbing that many find ideal. Older folks will also find this is a great option to have to ensure a proper cleaning takes place. An electric toothbrush can do a better job of cleaning teeth, particularly for those who have difficulty brushing or who have limited manual dexterity.

When it comes to replacing your toothbrush, the rules are quite simple. Replace your toothbrush when it begins to show wear, or every three months, whichever comes first. It is also very important to change toothbrushes after you’ve had a cold, since the bristles can collect germs that can lead to reinfection.

If you’re interested in learning more about choosing a toothbrush, contact Dr. Larry Lieberman, DDS at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

Am I Developing Gingivitis? | Palm Harbor Dentist

Gingivitis, or gum disease, is one of those ailments one dreads hearing they have. It usually develops when oral care falls by the wayside, so it can easily be prevented with proper dental routines. Gingivitis is an inflammation of the gums, usually caused by a bacterial infection. If left untreated, it can become a more serious infection known as periodontitis and can cause tooth loss.

Your gums actually attach to the teeth at a lower point than the gum edges. Food can get trapped in this space and cause a gum infection or gingivitis. Plaque is a thin film of bacteria on the surface of your teeth. When you don’t brush, it hardens and becomes tartar. Left unchecked, gingivitis can cause the gums to separate from the teeth. This can cause injury to the soft tissue and bone supporting the teeth, causing them to fall out.

The problem is many people aren’t aware that they have gingivitis. It’s possible to have gum disease without any symptoms, and without regular dental checkups, it can go completely undetected. However, the following can be symptoms of gingivitis:

  • red, tender, or swollen gums
  • bleeding when brushing or flossing
  • gums that have pulled away from the teeth
  • loose teeth
  • a change in how your teeth fit together when you bite (malocclusion)
  • pus between teeth and gums
  • pain when chewing
  • sensitive teeth
  • partial dentures that no longer fit
  • foul-smelling breath that does not go away after you brush your teeth

Remember, practicing good oral hygiene is essential to your oral health. Preventative care starts at home, not in your dentist’s chair every six months.

If you’re interested in learning more about gingivitis, contact Dr. Larry Lieberman, DDS at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

Bad Habits Can Ruin Your Smile | Palm Harbor Dentist

While we are preparing for our holiday social calendar, we do our best to look our best while enjoying our family and friends. However, for many, our dental health isn’t a top priority like it should be. One of the main issues isn’t exactly hygiene, but bad dental habits we’ve picked up over the years. Some of those habits may even be done without our knowledge. If you happen to have one of the following habits, make some time to try to change them before dental issues are created:

Chewing ice. Are you an ice muncher after your drink is finished? Little did you know, the cold and hardness of the cubes can actually do damage to your teeth by chipping or cracking them.

Using your teeth as a tool. Using your teeth to crack open nuts, or tear through plastic can be incredibly detrimental. Just like chewing ice, using your teeth as a tool may cause damage to your teeth. Find a pair of scissors or a knife instead.

Carbonated beverages. ‘Tis the season for toasts with bubbly drinks. While this isn’t a surprise, we’re adding the usage of sugar-free sodas as well. Carbonated beverages of all types are acidic and incredibly harmful to teeth.

Nail biting. Perhaps one of the most common bad habits, biting your nails itself is not only damaging to your nail beds, but your teeth.

Grinding your teeth. The official term for this habit is bruxism and it is common to occur at night. Grinding your teeth can wear your teeth down. A dentist may give you a night guard to help you get it under control.

If you’re interested in learning more about bad dental habits, contact Dr. Larry Lieberman, DDS at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.