How to combat halitosis - dr chauvin lafayette la

How to combat halitosis

It’s not a pleasant subject to talk about, but if you’re suffering from bad breath, you need to know you have it — and that there are things you can do to prevent it. 

What are the causes of halitosis or bad breath?

Bad breath, also known as halitosis or malodor, is most often caused by something happening in your mouth, like bacteria that cause the gums to swell and emit a sulfur-like smell, or cavities. 

Here are some other reasons you might have bad breath: 

  • Diabetes
  • Liver disease
  • Respiratory tract infections
  • Chronic bronchitis

How to combat bad breath

If you’re suffering from bad breath (just like those people around you), fortunately, there are things you can do to get rid of it and keep it from coming back. These include: 

  • Rinsing with mouthwash: Did you know that mouthwash not only adds a minty freshness to your breath, it also kills bacteria? Just make sure you choose a mouthwash that kills bacteria, and it’ll help eliminate some of the source of bad breath.

  • Maintain a healthy, balanced diet: There are some diets out there, like fasting and no-carb diets, that can cause bad breath. If you’ve had problems with halitosis, you should avoid these extreme diets. Although garlic, onions and some spices are good for your body, they’re not good for your mouth. You shouldn’t eat them if you’re trying to improve your breath.

  • Tongue-scraping: The two most common bacteria in your mouth that are widely known for causing bad breath and tooth decay are called Mutans streptococci and Lactobacilli. If you scrape your tongue twice a day, research has shown that these two types of bacteria will be reduced in your mouth.

  • Brush and floss more often: Are you brushing your teeth twice a day? And are you flossing at least once a day? If you answered yes, are you being honest with yourself? If you’re not brushing and flossing in accordance with the standards listed above, then you’re not getting rid of all the plaque in your mouth. Plaque causes the bacteria that will bring you bad breath.

  • Quit using tobacco products: There’s a long list of reasons why you should quit smoking or using other nicotine products, and among them is bad breath. The time to quit is now.

  • Choose gum instead of mints: Just like your body gets addicted to sugar, your mouth is a big fan of sugar, too. Bacteria love sugar. They love it so much, they turn it into acid that breaks down your tooth enamel and causes bad breath. If you need something to freshen your breath, choose sugar-free gum instead of mints.

  • Stay hydrated: One of the causes of bad breath is an overly dry mouth, and one way to combat a dry mouth is by drinking plenty of water. Make sure you’re drinking at least 64 ounces a day.

  • Visit your dentist! This is last, but definitely not least. If you’re experiencing bad breath and none of the above solutions are helping, it’s time to call Dr. Tim Chauvin’s office to see how we can help. 

Set up a dental appointment with Dr. Tim Chauvin’s office today

If you are worried about bad breath, there are various options available for improvement. With the right dentist by your side, you can figure out the problem and your best solution. Chauvin, DDS & Associates in Lafayette La is here to help! Set up an appointment today.

Cross-bite correction and treatment - dr chauvin lafayette la

Cross-bite correction and treatment

A cross-bite is when your teeth are out of alignment. It is where your lower teeth will be outside of your top row of teeth. Cross-bite can make an individual feel self-conscious about their smile and other facial expressions. Let’s learn more about it.

What is a cross-bite?

In the simplest terms, a cross-bite occurs when your top teeth aren’t aligned with your bottom teeth. The clinical definition mentions tooth arches and jaw positions. No matter the cause, a cross-bite is essentially a misalignment. Cross-bites can occur from trauma, but most often, they are genetic. A cross-bite can specifically occur in children when their adult teeth grow before all of their baby teeth have a chance to fall out. It’s safe to say that if your parents had alignment issues, you might have them as well.

Anterior vs. Posterior

There are two kinds of cross-bites. An anterior cross-bite occurs when the front teeth on your top row fall behind the front teeth on your bottom row. This type of cross-bite is similar to an underbite. The second type of cross-bite is a posterior cross-bite. Posterior cross-bites occur when your top row of teeth falls inside your bottom row of teeth when you bite down. Luckily, both anterior and posterior cross-bites can be treated.

Cross-bite Correction and Treatment Options

Most dental professionals would agree that the best time to correct a cross-bite is as a child or teenager. There are treatments available for adults as well, but the earlier the cross-bite is detected and treated, the better. Most cross-bites are remedied by adjusting the teeth or jaw using orthodontic treatments and appliances.

Some treatment options that are available to correct cross-bites include: 

– Maxillary Expander

– Removable expander

– Braces

– Surgery in extreme cases

Many orthodontic professionals utilize a combined therapy of expanders and braces. The expanders work to create the correct amount of space in between the teeth so that the bites are aligned properly throughout the entire mouth. In adults, sometimes a removable expander can be prescribed that is only worn at night. Each case is different and will require its treatment plan.

The best place to start is by talking to your dentist about cross-bite correction and treatment options available to you or your child. As we’ve mentioned, cross-bites that are left untreated can cause even larger health issues down the road.

How can fixing a cross-bite connection help you? 

Getting your cross-bite connection fixed can help you in many ways. You will feel that your smile is even, and the face structure will be symmetrical. Most importantly, it can help you with chewing your food, and you can enjoy it in a better way. 

Also, you won’t wear down enamel or chip a tooth since your chewing will become even. Moreover, fixing a cross-bite can also have a lasting effect and can help in the correction of your teeth. As a result, you can avoid complications in the future and save a lot of money going towards the dental bills in the future. 

  • Improper alignment of the teeth can cause various problems such as: 
  • Wearing down teeth unevenly
  • Loss of enamel 
  • Become looser over time

Therefore, you should choose the best treatment options for cross-bite connection to avoid these complications.

Bottom Line: The Best Cross-bite Correction Treatment

If you are worried about your cross-bite connection, there are various treatment options available for you to choose. With the right dentist by your side, you can go through this process without any hassle.

Chauvin, DDS & Associates in Lafayette La is concerned about your smile! A cross-bite can affect your self-esteem as well as your oral health. We care about it all. If you’d like to learn more about how we can help you gain a perfect smile or restore your oral health, give us a call today at (337) 234-2186.

Is Something Wrong if You don’t have 32 Teeth - dr chauvin lafayette la

Is something wrong if you don’t have 32 teeth

Naturally, an adult has 32 teeth, out of which many remove their wisdom teeth, bringing the total count down to 28. However, some people never develop their wisdom teeth. In other cases, people don’t have their other permanent teeth. 

Well, to be clear, this does not happen due to tooth loss from injury or decay- the teeth just never developed in the first place. 

Is something wrong if you don’t have 32 teeth? This answer depends on the reason for missing teeth. 

Why do Some Teeth not Develop?

The simplest answer is genetics. There is a term that’s used when a person is missing 6 or fewer permanent teeth, hypodontia. On the other hand, when a person is missing more than six permanent teeth, it’s called oligodontia. These are birth defects that are caused by abnormal changes in the genes. Both of these problems are common and can be developed in any child at a growing age. The most important thing to do for both of these conditions is to diagnose and start treatment early. Not only for cosmetic purposes, but they can lead to severe problems in the future. 

Treating Hypodontia and Oligodontia

When a person is missing teeth, several things can happen:

  • Their teeth can shift, causing misaligned bites and other tooth damage
  • Their body can reabsorb the jawbone
  • They may have trouble eating or speaking

These things can have a major effect on a person from a dental and emotional standpoint. That’s why it’s important to catch it early so your dentist can begin a treatment plan for oligodontia and hypodontia. While we can’t force the missing teeth to grow, they can be replaced. Dental implants, dentures, crowns, and bridges can all be used to fill in any missing teeth. If left untreated for too long, the current teeth might shift from their original position, causing misalignment. As a result, the doctor needs to move them back with braces or other means before installing replacement teeth in your mouth.

Missing Wisdom Teeth

Adults start developing wisdom teeth at different ages. You can expect the development of your third molars in your early adult years or late teens, around age 17 to 21. Some people also get their wisdom teeth earlier, while others develop them later in life. But a small percentage of the population never develop some (or all) of their wisdom teeth. This isn’t a bad thing at all! That’s fewer teeth for the oral surgeon to remove. Also, since you will be living with them for several years, you will not notice this change. Missing wisdom teeth are also unnoticeable and don’t impact your oral health. 

Like hypodontia, missing wisdom teeth are the result of a genetic anomaly. Research shows that thousands of years ago, a mutation suppressed the formation of wisdom teeth. Archaeologists have found fossils in China that can be traced back to 300,000 to 400,000 years ago that are missing third molars. Experts predict that this mutation has impacted our ability to develop wisdom teeth. 

Bottom Line

Whether you have missing wisdom teeth or others, it’s important that you get yourself checked. This will help you get an idea of whether they are impacting your oral health. Since it’s nothing that could have been prevented, as it happened on the genetic level, you can treat hypodontia and oligodontia. The important thing is to have the teeth replaced before any other issues develop. Call Dr. Chauvin’s office if you have more questions!

Top 5 Worst Foods for Dental Health - chauvin dental lafayette la

What You Eat Matters: What Are the Worst Foods for Dental Health?

Poor oral health impacts your quality of life, affecting your mental, physical, emotional, and social well-being. 

Research reveals that 53% of people with oral health problems experience self-esteem. Missing teeth, rotting teeth, oral infections, oral pain, and swelling can influence how you: 

  • Eat 
  • Socialize 
  • Talk 

Certain foods can wreak havoc on your mouth and affect your well-being. Give yourself a confidence boost and improve your oral health by limiting the following foods:

  • Alcohol and Wine

It’s no surprise that drinking alcohol is unhealthy. But what many people don’t know is that drinking causes your mouth to become dry. 

A dry mouth means less saliva, which equals unhealthy teeth. Why? It is because saliva helps wash away food particles. It’s also essential for repairing potential signs of tooth decay, gum diseases, sticking food, and other oral infections. 

At the same time, white and red wine is rich in erosive acid and tannins. It means that drinking wine can soften your enamels, dry your mouth, and stain your teeth.

To ensure a healthy mouth, avoid getting dehydrated. Try to limit alcohol intake and drink plenty of water. You may even try fluoride rinses.

  • Dried Fruits

Most people assume that dried fruits are a healthy snack. Unfortunately, many dried fruits, including figs, raisins, apricots, and figs, are sticky. 

It means that dried fruits get stuck and cling to your teeth and crevices. If you enjoy eating dried fruits, follow these steps:

  • Rinse your mouth with water or fluoride solutions 
  • Brush your teeth properly
  • Floss 

Moreover, try choosing fresh fruits since they contain less sugar content.

  • Pasta Sauce

While tomatoes are healthy, tomato sauce is acidic. When you pour an extensive amount of tomato sauce over your pasta, you damage your enamel. 

It is because the acidic tomato sauce starts breaking down your enamel while the pasta’s carbs feed harmful bacteria. 

Keep your teeth’ enamel healthy by replacing tomato sauce with cheese. 

  • Popcorn 

Popcorn is an excellent movie snack, but they’re the worst dental offenders. 

It’s unlikely you’ll finish eating popcorn without getting it stuck in your teeth. The thin shell tends to make a home between your teeth and gums. Plus, chewing on un-popped kernels may crack your tooth or cause tooth decay. 

If you’re a fan of popcorn, remember to floss after eating.

  • Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is famous for two things: its detoxifying properties and high acidity. It means that drinking apple cider vinegar can erode your tooth enamel. 

If you enjoy apple cider vinegar, add water to it. Ensure that you rinse your mouth and teeth later.

What Foods Should You Eat?

 Here’s a list of delicious food items you can enjoy to improve your oral health:

  • Fluoride-rich foods
  • Fruits and vegetables rich in fiber 
  • Green and black tea
  • Cheese, milk, yogurt, and other dairy products 
  • Sugarless chewing gum 

Ensure a Healthy and Beautiful Smile 

Reduce the risks of tooth decay and diseases by following the ADA-approved tips listed below:

  • Limiting Between-Meal Snacks- If your tummy starts grumbling before dinner, choose something nutritious like a carrot or apple rather than your favorite chips 
  • Eating Sugary Foods with Meals- Since our mouth makes more saliva while eating, it’s an excellent idea to consume sugary foods with meals to reduce the effects of acid production 
  • Drinking Healthy Amounts of Water- Fluoridated water helps reduce the risks of tooth decay, so choose bottled water that contains fluoride content 
  • Following Oral Hygiene- Brush your teeth twice a day and floss at least once


Set up an appointment with Dr. Chauvin today


Speak to Dr. Chauvin from Lafayette Dentist Chauvin to ensure your dental heath. Dr. Chauvin will examine your teeth and gums, review your oral health history, and discuss your dental hygiene goals to offer the best advice. 

At Tim Chauvin, DDS & Associates, we offer high-quality services to patients across Lafayette and surrounding areas. Give us a call at (337) 234-2186 or book an appointment to start your journey towards healthier and beautiful smiles.

cavity - dr chauvin lafayette la

Cavity? Now What? (plus Signs and symptoms)

You’ve heard the word a hundred times — and you might have been treated for one or two as a child — but do you really know what a cavity is? 

A cavity is a permanently damaged area on your tooth that morphs into a tiny hole — or opening — on the hard surface of a tooth. 


What causes cavities? 

If you end up with a cavity, fear not. You’re not alone, and it’s not the end of the world. In fact, cavities are one of the world’s most prevalent health issues. Cavities are caused by a number of things, including: 

  • Bacteria in your mouth
  • Lack of adequate oral care (not brushing and/or flossing your teeth enough)
  • Too many sugary beverages 
  • Too many sugary snacks

Typically, dentists can fix cavities pretty easily. But if left untreated, they can cause an infection in your mouth — or tooth loss. 


What are the symptoms of a cavity? 

Often, if the cavity is new or not severe, you won’t have any symptoms. But as the cavity persists, you might experience: 

  • Tooth pain
  • Sensitive teeth (sensitive to hot or cold food or beverages)
  • Holes or pits in your teeth (that you can see with the naked eye)
  • Stains on your teeth


How is a cavity treated? 

A cavity is typically “filled” by a dentist in a relatively painless and easy fix. There are several types of fillings available, but the most common are amalgam and composite. 

Here are the fillings available for cavities: 

  • Amalgam Fillings: Amalgam fillings are comprised of several different elements, which means they can be noticeable when you laugh or smile — even if they’re in the back of your mouth. They are among the most common — and the least costly — of all the fillings available.  
  • Composite Fillings: Composite fillings are also known as filled resins. They are a combination of glass or quartz — and they’re popular because they often match the color of your tooth, so they’re not noticeable when you smile. 
  • Metals: These metals — gold or silver — are used in amalgam fillings. Gold costs roughly 10 times more than silver when it comes to fillings. Although many people aren’t comfortable with shiny metal fillings, they choose them because they’re more durable than other options — they can last more than a decade before needing attention. 
  • Ceramic: A ceramic filling typically is made with porcelain and, like composites, won’t be noticeable to people when you smile. The difference between porcelain and composite is that the porcelain filling won’t show as many tooth stains over an extended period of time. The drawback: Ceramic fillings can be very expensive.
  • Glass Ionomer: A glass lonomer is unique because it releases fluoride, which helps to protect your teeth. Although it helps your teeth while it’s in, a glass lonomer is not as durable as other fillings, so it will need to be replaced sooner. 


As you can see, there is no shortage of options on correcting a cavity, and all of them are relatively pain-free and not very time-consuming. Contact Dr. Tim Chauvin’s office today for more information. 

Pregnancy and Dental Health - dr chauvin lafayette la

Pregnancy and Dental Health

Oral health is one crucial component of overall health, and this is even more true when you’re pregnant. 

Did you know that studies have revealed a connection between periodontitis — also known as gum disease — and premature birth? Gum disease also has been linked to low birthweight. That’s why it’s so important for you to take care of your teeth and gums while you’re expecting. 

How does pregnancy affect your dental health?

The changes in your body you experience during pregnancy can have a big impact on your teeth and gums. One of the most obvious signs of pregnancy is bleeding gums. When you’re pregnant, there’s more blood flowing through your veins, a higher level of acid in your mouth, and a drastic rise in hormones. 

All of these changes can cause problems with your oral health. These issues can include

  • Gingivitis: Do your gums bleed when you brush? Are your gums red, swollen and/or sore? Then you might have gingivitis. Progesterone, a hormone that is heightened during pregnancy, can lead to gingivitis, so it’s a common occurrence in pregnant women. You’ll need to see a dentist to treat the gingivitis before it gets more serious and turns into periodontitis (gum disease).
  • Tooth loss: Just like it causes gingivitis, excess progesterone during pregnancy — along with estrogen — can impact the tissues and bones that keep your teeth intact. If you feel loose teeth while you’re pregnant, this is normal. 
  • Periodontitis: If all of the above conditions are heightened to include extreme swelling and infection in your gums and the bones in your mouth, then you could have periodontitis. This is a serious gum disease. It can also cause your teeth to become loose. You’ll need to get this treated immediately. 
  • Pregnancy tumors: Tumor sounds like a scary word, but pregnancy tumors are not cancerous, but instead, lumps that form in between teeth — on already swollen gums. The tumors can cause your mouth to bleed. They could be caused by having too much plaque. Flossing will help to eliminate plaque, but if the pregnancy tumors don’t go away on their own, you might end up having them surgically removed after you have your baby. 
  • Tooth decay: Tooth decay — or when the enamel that protects your tooth breaks down — is caused by acid in your mouth. Because pregnancy creates higher levels of acid in your mouth, tooth decay is more common among women who are expecting. You’ll have even higher acidity levels if you’re experiencing a lot of morning sickness and vomiting during pregnancy. 

How you can help you and your unborn child

The myth that it’s unsafe to visit your dentist for cleanings or X-rays while you’re pregnant is just that: a myth. Visiting your dentist can be integral in keeping your mouth (and thus your baby) healthy while you’re expecting. 

You should notify your dentist as soon as you know about your pregnancy so he or she can adjust treatment, procedures and medications. The American Pregnancy Association says the second trimester is the usually the best time for minor dental work (i.e. cleaning, fillings).


What brushing your teeth has to do with heart disease - dr chauvin lafayette la

What brushing your teeth has to do with heart disease

It’s no secret that brushing your teeth twice a day for at least two minutes is imperative to oral health, but did you know that it’s also a factor in heart health? 

Although it hasn’t been proven that poor oral health causes heart disease, or that good oral health prevents heart disease, years of research has shown a definitive connection between the two. 


Here’s what we do know about brushing your teeth and heart disease

  • If you have untreated gum disease, also known as periodontitis, you’re at an increased risk of developing heart disease.

  • If you don’t take care of your teeth and mouth, you’re at a higher risk for a bacterial infection, which can enter the bloodstream and subsequently damage your heart valves.

  • Scientists have been able to connect tooth loss patterns to coronary artery disease.

  • If you have diabetes, your oral health is even more important. Researchers say that people with diabetes can greatly benefit from having healthy teeth and gums.


How do bacteria in your mouth impact your heart health? 

There are numerous studies on teeth loss and cardiovascular health, but a more recent study that focused on oral bacteria and heart health had some interesting findings

  • People in the study who had the kind of bacteria that causes gum disease also had thicker carotid arteries. Researchers believe the thicker your carotid arteries, the greater at risk you are for a heart attack or stroke.

  • Of the 682 people studied, people who said they brushed their teeth less than twice a day for two minutes each time had a three-fold increase in their risk for heart disease.

  • Scientists believe bacteria get into your bloodstream, then make their way through the rest of your body. This can cause inflammation, which leads to the clogging of your arteries.

  • Although it’s quite possible that people who don’t take proper care of their teeth and gums also don’t take proper care of the rest of their body, the study does conclude that gum disease increases patients’ blood pressure and interferes with medications that are prescribed to treat high blood pressure. High blood pressure is one of the leading causes of strokes and heart attacks. 

Despite the limitations of the study, cardiologist Dr. Ann Bolge said the study “is a good reminder that the mouth is an important part of a person’s entire health and simple, daily behaviors that improve health are incredibly important.”


How to properly care for your teeth and gums

Whether you’re at a higher risk for heart disease or not, taking care of your teeth and gums is still an essential part of your overall health. Here are the simple steps you can take to have a healthy mouth: 

  • Brush your teeth twice a day for at least two minutes each time you brush.

  • Floss in between your teeth daily.

  • Schedule twice-yearly cleanings and check-ups with your dentist. 

Click here to schedule your appointment today with Lafayette’s most trusted dentist. 

Summer Tips for a Whiter Smile - dr chauvin dentist lafayette la

Summer Tips for a Whiter Smile

Summer is approaching and many people are working on their physiques to get into beach body-worthy shape. While folks want to look great in swimwear, having a white smile can boost your attractiveness, too. Your smile says a lot about you including your friendliness and confidence.

Age and exposure to stain-causing foods, beverages, and tobacco will darken our teeth over time. While surface stains can be removed with good oral hygiene and professional dental cleanings, you might need to invest in having a professional teeth whitening treatment to achieve the bright smile you want.

If you want to look great head to toe, consider the following tips for achieving pearly whites.

Commit to a Thorough Oral Hygiene Regimen

It’s true that a proper oral hygiene routine prevents disease. But you might not know that regular brushing and flossing can help you achieve (and maintain) a whiter smile. Brushing and flossing removes plaque, a semi-translucent substance that coats our teeth. Plaque accumulation can make teeth appear dull and yellow.

You should brush at least twice a day and not more than thrice for about two minutes each time. Brushing long enough helps rinse away plaque and leftover debris from food that stains teeth. Even though brushing is pretty effective at cleaning your mouth, it isn’t enough. You should also floss once a day to control plaque development and remove debris that has accumulated between teeth.

You can also use a whitening toothpaste to lighten your teeth a shade or two but keep in mind that store-bought whitening products can only address surface stains. Teeth whitening toothpastes also contain abrasives so they shouldn’t be used for too long.

Schedule a Dental Cleaning

Did you know a dental cleaning can boost the vibrancy of your smile? It’s true. Professional prophylaxis removes surface stains and debris that can make teeth look discolored.

Even if you practice great oral hygiene, you still need a dental cleaning to remove plaque and tartar. Having two professional cleanings a year will help keep your teeth looking bright and lustrous.

Quit Smoking

There is a plethora of good reasons to quit smoking and protecting your smile is one of them. Using tobacco—including chewing tobacco—can permanently discolor your teeth. While you’re adopting a healthier lifestyle to rock your summer clothing, consider quitting tobacco, too to boost your health and protect the color of your smile.

Drink Coffee, Tea, and Soda in Moderation

Dark-colored beverages like coffee and soda can lead to permanent tooth stains. Drinking them frequently will cause extrinsic stains that can only be lightened with a professional whitening treatment.

Beyond cutting down your consumption of dark beverages, you can drink clear water afterwards. Water helps rinse away food and beverage particles. It also the dilutes acidic content of many of these drinks, which is important for preventing tooth enamel damage.   

All You've Ever Wanted to Know About Veneers - dr chauvin dentist lafayette la

All You’ve Ever Wanted to Know About Veneers

More than likely, you’ve heard something about porcelain veneers. Perhaps you’ve heard about a celebrity’s perfect smile being attributed to them or maybe a coworker or neighbor has mentioned that they have veneers. Porcelain veneers are cosmetic enhancements used to produce attractive smile makeovers.

Having a beautiful smile is an important asset. Many people associate youth, friendliness, and vigor with a vibrant, straight smile. If you’re suffering with smile imperfections, cosmetic dental treatments like placing porcelain veneers could transform your life. If you have questions, we’ve compiled a list of answers to common questions.

What are porcelain veneers?

Short answer: permanent cosmetic enhancements. They’re bonded to the outer surfaces of teeth and are used to conceal dental imperfections. A veneer is a wafer-thin piece of porcelain that’s tooth-shaped and custom made to fit over a person’s tooth.

How can veneers help me?

They conceal a host of dental imperfections including stains, cracks, and chips. They also hide teeth with jagged edges. Receiving veneers over multiple teeth produces the appearance of a healthily spaced, straight smile.

Porcelain veneers are a versatile cosmetic dental treatment that could improve practically anyone’s smile. They lend the appearance of having white, straight teeth that are proportionate to each other and the gums. Since veneers can produce a flawless smile, it is a favored treatment among famous entertainers. And these aren’t just for the wealthy or famous, though, people from all kinds of backgrounds can enjoy this cosmetic treatment.

Will they look natural?

A great deal of care is taken to ensure that veneers look and feel as natural as possible. Veneers are custom made just for the patient. Their specifications are carefully determined by a dentist so that they don’t appear too thick or too large. The shade of veneers is also important for maintaining a natural aesthetic. Our Lafayette, LA dentist will help you select a shade that is perfect for your skin tone and your treatment goals.

What is life like with veneers?

Life with veneers means enjoying a beautiful, straight, and healthy-looking smile. After they are placed, most people report a surge in their self-confidence and an increased positive outlook on life. There are numerous psychological benefits to having a beautiful smile. Since these cosmetic enhancements are permanently fixed to teeth, they are low maintenance. Veneers are brushed and flossed just like a person would clean their natural teeth.

Having veneers does not lead to dietary restrictions. Since porcelain, the material used to construct veneers, is very lifelike, patients can enjoy a well-rounded diet.

A Curious Connection_ Guys, Gum Disease, and Heart Health _ dr chauvin dentist lafayette la

A Curious Connection: Guys, Gum Disease, and Heart Health

Oral health and general wellness are connected. A wealth of research has been dedicated to studying the links between common oral health conditions like gum disease and general health concerns like diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Quite a bit of this research has shown that there is a correlation between the development of periodontal (gum) disease and cardiovascular health conditions. When it comes to men’s health, this research matters—particularly because men have higher risks for developing gum disease and heart disease than women.

The Incidence of Cardiovascular Disease & Gum Disease Among Men

Studies show that the incidence of both gum disease and heart disease is higher among men than women. Some of these statistics might startle you.

  • Heart disease is the most common cause of death among men from all ethnic groups
  • About half of men’s deaths attributed to heart disease were asymptomatic at their onset
  • Gum disease is over 56% more likely to affect men than women
  • Men tend to have poorer dental health including excessive plaque and tartar accumulation as well as inflamed gingiva
  • Roughly 80% of the adult population in the USA will develop a form of periodontal disease at least once in their lifetimes

Connections Between Periodontal Health and Heart Health

Did you know that people with gum disease have a two to three times higher risk of developing cardiovascular disease—especially heart attack and stroke?

The exact correlations between heart disease and periodontal health are still being researched. Previous studies have shown, however, that the plaque present in periodontal disease can enter the blood stream. This plaque and the bacteria that infect the gums can attach to arteries in the heart.

Additionally, the level of inflammation present among those with gum disease appears to contribute to health issues including the cardiovascular variety. Harvard Medical School specifically points to the link between the long-term inflammatory responses of gum disease and atherosclerosis, which is the accumulation of fatty deposits of plaque in the arteries.

Preventing Gum Disease for Men

Preventing gum disease has a number of health benefits for men, including reduced risks for developing cardiovascular problems. The most effective way to prevent periodontal disease is to practice proper oral hygiene. The American Dental Association and the American Academy of Periodontology set forth guidelines for oral hygiene that include:

  • Brushing teeth twice a day for at least two minutes each time
  • Flossing once each day
  • Using ADA-approved oral hygiene tools and fluoridated toothpaste

Beyond practicing good oral hygiene, men should receive two dental cleanings and checkups each year, spaced about six months apart. Regular dental exams will help detect gum disease at its earliest stages, when it’s far easier to manage and treat.