Dentist Acworth: 8 Windows your overall health sees through dentistry.

I read this article the other day by the Mayo Clinic staff and it appears very much worth republishing.  Please read this and adjust your life accordingly.  It’s really not that difficult to lead a healthy life style and live longer lives.


Oral health: A window to your overall health

Your oral health is more important than you may realize. Get the facts about how the health of your mouth, teeth and gums may affect your general health.

By Mayo Clinic staff

Did you know that your oral health can offer clues about your overall health? Or that problems in your mouth can affect the rest of your body? Understand the intimate connection between oral health and overall health and what you can do to protect yourself.

What’s the connection between oral health and overall health?

Your mouth is teeming with bacteria — most of them harmless. Normally the body’s natural defenses and good oral health care, such as daily brushing and flossing, can keep these bacteria under control. However, harmful bacteria can sometimes grow out of control and cause oral infections, such as tooth decay and gum disease. In addition, dental procedures, medications, or treatments that reduce saliva flow, disrupt the normal balance of bacteria in your mouth or breach the mouth’s normal protective barriers may make it easier for bacteria to enter your bloodstream.

What conditions may be linked to oral health?

Your oral health may affect, be affected by or contribute to various diseases and conditions, including:

  • Endocarditis. Gum disease and dental procedures that cut your gums may allow bacteria to enter your bloodstream. If you have a weak immune system or a damaged heart valve, this can cause infection in other parts of the body — such as an infection of the inner lining of the heart (endocarditis).
  • Cardiovascular disease. Some research suggests that heart disease, clogged arteries and stroke may be linked to oral bacteria, possibly due to chronic inflammation from periodontitis — a severe form of gum disease.
  • Pregnancy and birth. Gum disease has been linked to premature birth and low birth weight.
  • Diabetes. Diabetes reduces the body’s resistance to infection — putting the gums at risk. In addition, people who have inadequate blood sugar control may develop more-frequent and severe infections of the gums and the bone that holds teeth in place, and they may lose more teeth than do people who have good blood sugar control.
  • HIV/AIDS. Oral problems, such as painful mucosal lesions, are common in people who have HIV/AIDS.
  • Osteoporosis. Osteoporosis — which causes bones to become weak and brittle — may be associated with periodontal bone loss and tooth loss.
  • Alzheimer’s disease. Tooth loss before age 35 may be a risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease.
  • Other conditions. Other conditions that may be linked to oral health include Sjogren’s syndrome — an immune system disorder — and eating disorders.

Be sure to tell your dentist if you’re taking any medications or have had any changes in your overall health — especially if you’ve had any recent illnesses or you have a chronic condition.

How can I protect my oral health?

To protect your oral health, resolve to practice good oral hygiene every day. For example:

  • Brush your teeth at least twice a day.
  • Replace your toothbrush every three to four months.
  • Floss daily.
  • Eat a healthy diet and limit between-meal snacks.
  • Schedule regular dental checkups.

Also, watch for signs and symptoms of oral disease and contact your dentist as soon as a problem arises. Remember, taking care of your oral health is an investment in your overall health. Pasted from <>

Novy Scheinfeld, DDS, PC

5471 Bells Ferry Road, Suite 200

Acworth, GA 30102


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Dentist Woodstock: How Much Do Dental Bridges Cost?

The cost of dental bridges varies depending on the type of bridge and complexity of the bridge required[1], the expertise of your dentist and the area of town in which the procedure is performed. Typically a dental bridge cost ranges from $900-1400 per tooth. Dental insurance will typically pay a percentage of the fee, usually half, depending on the individual dental plan.

It is important to keep your remaining teeth healthy and strong as the success of the bridge (depending on the type selected) depends on the solid foundation offered by the surrounding teeth. Brushing twice a day and flossing daily helps prevent tooth decay and gum disease that can lead to tooth loss. Your dentist or dental hygienist can demonstrate how to properly brush and floss your teeth. Keeping a regular cleaning schedule will help diagnose problems at an early stage when treatment has a better prognosis.  With proper care a dental bridges can last 5 to 15 years and even longer. With good oral hygiene and regular checkups, it is not unusual for the life span of a fixed bridge to be over 10 years.

If you’re a new patient, there’s often an initial office visit ($65-$102) and X-rays ($85-$135).  One must not forget that there are additional costs that contribute to the overall price involved in dental bridges, aside from the material and type of bridge chosen which are beyond the patient’s control.  The cost above does not include the costs for any anchoring on either side of the bridge.  So a 3 unit bridge could cost around $3,500 to $5,000.  A large share of undervalued costs goes toward the treatment itself, lab and production costs for the bridge, aftercare and the like.

Dental care on a whole is often considered expensive.  And depending upon the general wear and tear a bridge is exposed to and how well you keep your teeth free of plaque, it could last indefinitely.  With somewhere between 10 and indefinitely, the investment becomes rather modest, if not inexpensive.

In the alternative, if the cost escalates, you might want to consider a single dental implant with a cost of around $4000 to $6000.[2]  The benefit on an implant over your lifetime could be less expensive than a bridge and is the more natural state of the art replacement of a missing tooth.   If we can be of service or answer any of your questions please do not hesitate to give us a call.

Novy Scheinfeld, DDS, PC

290 Carpenter Drive, 200A

Atlanta (Sandy Springs), GA 30328



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[1] Is should be noted that both location of the missing tooth, the number of teeth involved or missing or whether there are virgin teeth or repaired teeth in front or behind the missing teeth come into play in the decision making process.

[2] The recommended standard of care for a single tooth missing is a single unit implant.  However, there are limiting factors, including insurance coverage that come into play in the decision making process.

Dentist Woodstock: How Much Does a Root Canal Cost?

The cost of having a root canal done depends upon where you live, the type of dentist and whether or not you have dental insurance.  The procedure is usually done by a specialist known as an endodontist, but can be performed by a general dentist.  The procedure can range anywhere from $900 to 1500.00 depending on the tooth location and the number of root canals involved.  The diagnosis will require an initial x-ray, which can be performed by your general dentist and forwarded to the endodontist’s office.  Sometimes there are issues that arise where the endodontist wants to charge for an initial consultation.  This may or may not be necessary depending on the relationship the endodontist has with your referring general practitioner.  If you have insurance it will usually cover about half to eighty percent of the cost.  One of the added costs to a root canal that should be taken into account is either an amalgam (or composite) or crown restoration of the tooth by your general dentist upon completion of the procedure.

The root canal involves opening the tooth and removing the pulp of the tooth, which contains the tooth nerve that’s causing you so much pain.  What necessitates the procedure is the root of the tooth being infected and no known treatment to preserve the nerve from further deterioration.  The two most common causes of infection of the pulp are deep cavities and fractures or broken teeth. As treatment, the pulp tissue is removed, the root is cleaned with files and filled with an inorganic material that keeps bacteria out of the root and tooth.   Generally, a root/nerve involved tooth only gets worse over time without treatment.  And the longer you wait, sometimes results in the loss of the entire tooth.

Prices don’t always reflect the quality of your treatment.  Having a sense of trust in your general dentist will usually result in the referral to an endodontist that’s also worth trusting.  If we can be of service or you have further questions please don’t hesitate to contact us by phone or by email.

Novy Scheinfeld, DDS, PC

5471 Bells Ferry Road

Suite 200

Acworth, GA 30102



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Dentist Woodstock- Oral Cancer Awareness

According to The Oral Cancer Foundation, there are two distinct causes of oral cancer. One, which I have mentioned in an earlier article is through the use of tobacco (and alcohol), a long time historic environmental cause, and the other is through the exposure to the HPV-16 virus (human papilloma virus version 16), which is a newly identified etiology, and apparently the same one which is responsible for the vast majority of cervical cancers in women.  And a small number (under 5 %) of people acquire oral cancers from no currently identifiable cause, presumably caused by some genetic predisposition similar to other cancer causing agents.

While most think this is a rare form of cancer, mouth cancer (popularly thought to be the result of chewing tobacco) is diagnosed in about 100 individuals each day here in the US alone, and one person dies from oral cancer every hour of every day.  If you add the sub category of laryngeal throat cancers like Michael Douglas was recently treated for (and most likely a result of his smoking and consumption of alcohol), the rates of occurrence accounting for about 10,000 additional new cases per year, then the death rate is significantly higher.   But these statistics can be drastically reduced when found at the early stages of development.  With early diagnosis, oral cancer patients have an 80 to 90 % survival rate.

Unfortunately at this time, the majority of cases are found as late stage cancers, and this accounts for the very high death rate of about 45% at five years from diagnosis.  The reason for these late stage diagnoses is not because these cancers are hard to discover, rather it is because of a lack of public awareness.  The American Dental Association states that only 60% of the US population sees a dentist every year, which leaves 40% to happenstance.    If heightened public awareness were coupled with a national program for screenings, diagnosis of oral cancers would yield early discovery by both medical and dental professionals.

Ironically, it is potentially easier to obtain public compliance to oral cancer screenings, because unlike many other cancer screening procedures, there is no invasive technique required to look for it, no discomfort or pain involved, and it is very inexpensive to have your mouth examined for the early signs of disease.  Realistically, it only costs about $35.00, usually 10 times less than a blood test at your annual physical.

It is important that patients realize that a visit to the dentist is no longer about a filling, a crown, or a postponable cleaning, but actually an exam that is a matter of life and death.  It’s important for patients and dentists to start a dialog today.  Even if talking about cancer is difficult, there are mechanisms around this.  Creating awareness, discovery and diagnosis is the purpose of April being Oral Cancer Awareness Month.  So when it comes to oral cancer and saving lives, these are primary responsibilities of the dental community.  The most important step in reducing the death rate from oral cancer is early discovery.  And no group has a better opportunity to have an impact than members of the dental community.   If our practice can be of help we are offering free cancer screening during the month of April.


Some Research and statistics provided by: The Oral Cancer Foundation.  Kuper H, Adami HO, Boffetta P (June 2002). “Tobacco use, cancer causation and public health impact”. Journal of internal medicine 251 (6): 455–66. Seitz HK, Pöschl G, Simanowski UA (1998). “Alcohol and cancer”. Recent developments in alcoholism : an official publication of the American Medical Society on Alcoholism, the Research Society on Alcoholism, and the National Council on Alcoholism. “Screening for Oral Cancer”. U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. 2004.


Novy Scheinfeld, DDS, PC                                                                              

5471 Bells Ferry Road, Suite 200

Acworth, GA 30102


How Often Should I See the Dentist? (

Dentist Acworth: Women and Your Oral Health

As a woman, you know that your health needs are unique and this includes your oral health needs. And because your needs are unique, you need to take extra care of yourself.  While women tend to take better care of their oral health than men do, women’s oral health is not significantly better than men’s.  This is because hormonal fluctuations throughout a woman’s life can affect many tissues, including gum tissue.  These fluctuations occur when you mature and change, as you do during puberty or menopause, or other times when you have special health needs, such as menstruation and particularly during pregnancy.

According to the Journal of Periodontology[1] at least 23 percent of women between the ages 30 to 54 have periodontitis.[2]  And, 44 percent of women ages 55 to 90 who still have their teeth have periodontitis.  Yet many women do not realize they have it until it reaches an advanced state, which is why regular hygiene check-ups are so important.

Stages of your life – steps to protect your oral health.

Puberty – an increased level of sex hormones, such as progesterone and possibly estrogen, causes increased blood circulation to the gums. This may cause an increase in the gum’s sensitivity and lead to a greater reaction to any irritation, including food particles and plaque. Signs to look for in your teenage daughter are swollen, red and/or tender gums.[3]

It is particularly important during this time in your daughter’s life to make sure she follows a good at-home oral hygiene regimen, including regular brushing and flossing, and regular dental care. In some cases, a dental professional may recommend periodontal therapy to help prevent damage to the tissues and bone surrounding the teeth.[4]

Menstruation – can result in menstruation gingivitis.  Women with this condition may experience bleeding gums, bright red and swollen gums and sores on the inside of the cheek. Menstruation gingivitis typically occurs right before a woman’s period and clears up once her period has started.  Sometimes it occurs concurrent with stressful situations and menstruation.

Pregnancy – increase gingivitis or pregnancy gingivitis beginning in the second or third month of pregnancy that increases in severity throughout the eighth month. During this time, some women may notice swelling, bleeding, redness or tenderness in the gum tissue.[5] As a result of varying hormone levels, between 50%-70% of women will develop gingivitis sometime during their pregnancy – a condition called pregnancy gingivitis.[6] In some cases, gums swollen by pregnancy gingivitis can react strongly to irritants and form large lumps. These growths, called pregnancy tumors, are not cancerous and generally painless.

Studies have shown a possible relationship between periodontal disease and pre-term, low-birth-weight babies. Any infection, including periodontal infection, is cause for concern during pregnancy. In fact, pregnant women who have periodontal disease may be more likely to have a baby that is born too early and too small!

To prevent pregnancy gingivitis it’s especially important to practice good oral hygiene habits, which include brushing at least twice a day, flossing once a day, and using an antimicrobial mouth rinse. If you are due for a professional cleaning, don’t skip it simply because you are pregnant.  Now more than ever, professional dental cleanings are particularly important.

Oral contraceptives – while women are taking drugs to help treat periodontal disease, such as antibiotics, may lessen the effect of an oral contraceptive.  So be sure and consult your dentist about all the medications you are taking.

Menopause and Post-Menopause – not surprising given all the changes happening within your body, but you may experience changes in your mouth as well.  You may notice discomfort such as dry mouth, pain and burning sensations in the gum tissue and altered taste, particularly to salt and pepper.

In addition, menopausal gingivostomatitis affects a small percentage of women. Gums that look dry or shiny or bleed easily and range from abnormally pale to deep red may indicate this condition. Most women find that estrogen supplements help to relieve these symptoms.[7]

Bone loss is potentially associated with both periodontal disease and osteoporosis. Women considering Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) to help fight osteoporosis should note that this may help protect their teeth and your jawbone as well as other parts of the body.

What Should You Do?

See a dental professional for cleaning at least twice a year – you need to monitor your oral health.

If referred, see a periodontist in your area. Problems may include: Bleeding gums during brushing, red, swollen or tender gums.   Other issues such as persistent bad breath or pus between the teeth and gums.  If you’re a denture wearer a change in the fit of your dentures may occur.

Keep your dentist informed about any medications you are taking and any changes in your health history.

Brush and floss properly every day.  Review your techniques with a dental professional.

If there any questions that you might have, please contact or call us at our Sandy Springs or Acworth office to discuss them.

Novy Scheinfeld, DDS, PC

5471 Bells Ferry Road, Suite 200

Acworth, Georgia 30102


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[1] January 1999 issue of the Journal of Periodontology

[2] Periodontitis is an advanced state of periodontal disease in which there is active destruction of the periodontal supporting tissues.

[4] Ibid.

[5] Ibid.

[6] WebMd. Pregnancy Gingivitis and Pregnancy Tumors.

[7] Women and Gums: American Academy of Periodontology Journal.

Dentist Acworth: The Mercury Filling Controversy

Whenever I hear a patient ask about amalgam restorations (usually referred to as mercury fillings), I wonder why this question refuses to go away.  For decades, amalgams have been considered the primary restorative material for posterior teeth (the ones in the back) because of their long time success.  After enormous amounts of study the World Health Organization, the FDI World Dental Federation, and the American Dental Association continue to endorse the use of amalgam to restore teeth.   Yet it continues to be demonized by the public, in particular in urban legends over the internet.

As a result the trend is towards the less and less use of amalgams and the greater use of composite resins to restore posterior teeth.  One of our consultants, Tom Limoli of Limoli and Associates notes that US third-party payment data reflects that 65% of direct posterior restorations last year were resin-based composite, while 35% were amalgam.  So regardless of the empirical evidence to the contrary, the patient pool is demanding composite restorations.

Every dentist will need an alternative material to use in the restoration of posterior teeth as this trend continues.  The challenge for the dentist is that composite resins only have a life expectancy of 5 to 8 years.  Given the patient’s desire to be rid of the potential or theoretical health hazards that have been formulated in recent years, amalgam restorations will ultimately be eliminated by the slow and natural death of attrition.  While amalgam has been the material of choice for decades and still remains the primary source of teaching in dental schools today, it may not be in the future.  Given the patient demand for composite restorations and what appears to be the dentist’s propensity to capitulate, we are going to need a better solution to posterior restorations if we want to achieve the same longevity that is achieved through amalgam restorations.

The internet has continued to create an uncertainty on the part of the lay public about amalgams similar to the controversy that surrounds cell phones and brain tumors.  It is interesting to note the dilemma faced by dentists today, when we know that amalgam is the better choice for the restoration, but the popular demand or path of least resistance is a composite restoration.  This disconnect creates some interesting food for thought.[1]

Novy Scheinfeld, DDS, PC

5471 Bells Ferry Road, Suite 200 

Acworth, GA 30102


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[1]Additional sources of information came from Gordon J. Christensen, DDS, James F. Simon, DDS, and Howard E. Strassler, DMD. Compendium of Continuing Education in Dentistry, July/August, 2011.

Dentist Woodstock: How Much do Dental Crowns Cost?

Dental crowns cost anywhere between $900.00 and $1500.00 each depending on the tooth to being restored. In addition, the cost will vary depending on materials, complexity and the dentist’s training and experience and to some degree the location of the practice.  Insurance may pay part of a crown’s cost if it’s obviously needed for medical reasons, but usually crowns are covered only on a limited basis per year.  Depending on the customers’ needs and wishes, partial and full crowns made of various materials may be utilized.  Crowns are made of gold, porcelain, resin or porcelain-fused-to-non-precious-metal.  A tooth-shaped cap (the crown) covers the entire surface of a tooth, adding strength, durability and stability. This usually requires two office visits; first to prepare the tooth, make an impression and install a temporary crown. The impression is sent to a dental laboratory or manufactured in-house with the use of a CAD aided milling machine to create the permanent crown, which is installed during the second appointment.

There’s often an initial office visit ($65-$102) and X-rays ($85-$135).  One must not forget that there are additional costs that contribute to the overall price involved in crowns, aside from the material and type of crown chosen which are beyond the patient’s control.  A large share of undervalued costs goes toward the treatment itself, lab and production costs for the crown, aftercare and the like.

Dental care on a whole is often considered expensive, but with proper care a crown may last 10 or more years.  Depending upon the general wear and tear a crown is exposed to and how well you keep your teeth free of plaque, it could last indefinitely.  With somewhere between 10 and indefinitely, the investment becomes rather modest, if not inexpensive.

If we can be of service or answer any of your questions please do not hesitate to give us a call.

Novy Scheinfeld, DDS, PC

5471 Bells Ferry Road, Suite 200

Acworth, GA 30102