Is Gingivitis Curable?

Gingivitis is an inflammation of the gum tissue around the teeth. Because gingivitis is usually painless and has very mild symptoms, many people who have it are unaware of it. Is gingivitis curable and preventable? Absolutely! Gingivitis can be prevented, and existing gingivitis can be reversed, with good oral hygiene and a bit of help from your dentist and dental hygienist.

What Causes Gingivitis?

When plaque builds up on your teeth and isn’t removed by careful brushing and flossing, it can turn into an even harder substance called tartar. Tartar builds up at the base of your teeth, irritating your gums and create an area where more plaque builds on top of the tartar and continues to cause more irritation to the gum tissue.

While most gingivitis is caused by poor dental care, there are other factors that can contribute to gum disease. Gingivitis is more prevalent in pregnant women, for example, as well as those going through puberty or menopause, since hormonal changes effect the bacteria in your mouth. Smoking, diabetes and vitamin deficiencies can also increase your risk of gingivitis.

How Can You Tell if You Have Gingivitis?

The first indication that you might have gingivitis is a small amount of blood on your toothbrush or in the sink when you brush your teeth. You might also notice that your gums are more red and are less firm than they should be. Your dentist and dental hygienist can diagnose gingivitis just by visually looking at your gums, so if you are concerned you may have gingivitis, you should make an appointment as soon as possible.

Is Gingivitis Curable?

Gingivitis can be reversed by eliminating the tartar that’s causing the irritation in your gums. Your dental professional can remove the existing tartar that’s irritating your gums by cleaning and scaling your teeth. After a professional cleaning, keep you teeth and gums free from tartar by brushing twice daily with a tartar-control toothpaste and flossing at least once a day. Using an antimicrobial mouthwash after brushing can also help prevent tartar buildup on your teeth. By brushing and flossing well, you can have regular, healthy gums again.

Dentistry From The Heart: From Day-of-Care Event to International Dental Nonprofit

 

 

August 10th, 2017

What started as a day-of-care event in a suburban Florida dental office nearly 16 years ago has grown into an international organization aimed at providing free dental care in hundreds of communities throughout the world.

Dr. Vincent Monticciolo, a Florida dentist based in New Port Richey, a suburb of Tampa, had long recognized that far too many bay area residents were going without needed dental care. So on Valentine’s Day in 2001, he hosted his first Dentistry From The Heart event, providing free dental care in his practice to anyone 18 or older.

Hundreds of people attended the inaugural event, some lining up overnight outside Dr. Moticciolo’s practice to receive care the next morning. And due to the success of that first event, Dentistry From The Heart began to spread throughout Florida and the rest of the country.

“Throughout the years, Dr. Monticciolo had a lot of colleagues talk to him about starting Dentistry From The Heart programs in their communities,” said Michelle Sotil, the organization’s director. “During those first few years, he mentored those colleagues and showed them how to set up events of their own.”

Dentistry From The Heart is now a worldwide nonprofit organization. More than 300 events are held annually throughout the United States, as well as in Canada, Ireland, Australia, Puerto Rico, Hawaii, and New Zealand, she said.

At the events, patients are given the option to receive an extraction, filling or cleaning. They are not required to provide identification or disclose the status of their income.

“We give them the option, but most people opt for the extraction,” said Ms. Sotil. “A majority of our patients have some form of untreated dental disease or something requiring immediate attention.”

Organizers suggest that patients requiring additional treatment seek care from regional free clinics or dental schools that offer dental services.

Dr. Monticciolo continues to host events each year in his New Port Richey clinic. During next year’s event, which is scheduled to take place Feb. 9, Dr. Monticciolo hopes to provide care for more than 500 people in his newly opened clinic, which boasts 18 dental operatories, which are rooms or spaces where dentists treat people.

“It truly is a wonderful charity, and each year it gets bigger and bigger,” said Ms. Sotil.