How Dentists Help Treat Sleep Apnea

How Dentists Help Treat Sleep Apnea

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Sleep apnea and snoring are serious medical issues often left undiagnosed and untreated. If you feel like you are suffering from sleep apnea, an easy way to get a diagnosis is to make an appointment with your dentist. 90% of people are unaware that they have sleep apnea, but dentists can identify early signs of sleep disorders in patients and help treat the problem.

What is Sleep Apnea?

There are two categories of sleep apnea: Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and Central sleep apnea (CSA). 

Obstructive sleep apnea is characterized by the narrowing or closing of the airway. Johns Hopkins Medicine explains that OSA occurs when your breathing is restricted for more than 10 seconds at least five times an hour. The lack of oxygen sends a signal to the brain, and jolts you awake, often with a snort or choke. 

Not everyone with OSA snores, however, so it is good to stay alert for any other common symptoms, which, according to the National Sleep Foundation, are: 

  • Waking up with a dry mouth
  • Night sweats
  • An inability to focus
  • Daytime sleepiness
  • Irritability
  • Headaches
  • The need to urinate frequently
  • Sexual dysfunction

Your breathing is also affected when suffering from CSA. In this form of the condition, your brain stops sending signals to breathe, so your breathing stops for short bursts. This means sufferers may struggle to fall and stay asleep. A common symptom of CSA is waking up short of breath.

Health Complications Caused by Sleep Apnea

Sleep disorders such as sleep apnea can cause serious health issues, as sufferers often cannot achieve the REM cycles needed for muscle repair and memory health. Leaving sleep apnea untreated can lead to health problems such as:

  • Hypertension
  • Cardiovascular conditions
  • Mood-related issues, such as depression
  • Unstable blood oxygen levels 

Who is at Risk of Sleep Apnea?

Several factors affect your risk of acquiring sleep apnea, but a stand-out statistic is that men are two to three times more likely to develop the condition than women. Other factors that can increase the risk of sleep apnea are: 

  • Obesity
  • A large neck circumference
  • Mandibular Retrognathia or Micrognathia (conditions contributing to a receded lower jaw and undersized jaw, respectively)
  • Age (sleep apnea is more common in older patients)
  • Nasal congestion
  • Lifestyle habits such as smoking and drinking alcohol
  • A family history of the condition

How Can a Dentist Help My Sleep Apnea?

Your dentist can work alongside your doctor or sleep specialist to develop a treatment plan that will help alleviate your OSA or CSA symptoms in the long term. A dentist can diagnose initial sleep apnea through dental and physiological examinations. If your physician determines that the course of treatment includes an oral appliance, then your dentist will collaborate to ensure a thorough oral examination in preparation for your fitting.

Oral appliances are the standard treatment for OSA patients. Many oral appliances on the market, ranging from mouth guards to tongue-retaining devices, usually move the tongue, jaw, and soft palette out of the way to encourage an open airway. Your dentist can custom-fit the chosen device for you and will work with your doctor to find a comfortable solution that best suits your needs. 

We’re Here to Help

If you’re worried that you might have sleep apnea, or are unsure and want to be sure, then make an appointment with us at Cakmes Dental Studio in Knoxville, TN. Your oral health is our priority.

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Celiac Disease and Your Oral Health

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Over 2 million Americans have Celiac Disease. According to Johns Hopkins Medicine, it is estimated that 1 in 133 Americans could have the disease without being aware of it. Celiac Disease doesn’t just affect your digestive tract; it can cause health problems everywhere, from your heart to your mouth.

What is Celiac Disease?

Celiac Disease is an autoimmune disease characterized by a reaction to gluten, a protein found primarily in wheat, barley, and rye. When a person living with Celiac Disease ingests gluten, it causes a painful immune response in the small intestine. This response damages the villi (small finger-like projections on the lining of the small intestine), designed to absorb nutrients. Over time, the lack of nutrient absorption causes damage to the intestine and leads to serious health complications. 

If left untreated, possible health complications include (but are not limited to):

  • Early onset osteoporosis
  • Anemia
  • Heart disease
  • Pancreatic insufficiency
  • Malnutrition

According to research, the disease tends to be prevalent in Caucasian people and those whose ancestors came from Europe. Patients with type 1 diabetes, Down syndrome, Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), and other autoimmune diseases are also more at risk.

Celiac Disease is genetic (it tends to run in families) and can present at any age, so if you display symptoms, it is vital to seek medical advice.

What are the symptoms?

The symptoms of Celiac Disease vary significantly amongst patients. Common symptoms can include: 

  • Chronic diarrhea or constipation
  • Gas
  • Repeated stomach pain or bloating
  • Muscle Cramps
  • Missed menstrual cycles
  • Weight loss
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Fatigue
  • Joint pain

Children who have Celiac Disease tend to present symptoms more centered around the digestive process.

How Does Celiac Disease Affect My Teeth?

Celiac Disease can affect your oral health from a young age. Children aged seven years and younger may develop enamel defects as their teeth and enamel are still developing. Celiac disease can also cause a delay in the development of the teeth and mouth. The frequent development of canker sores is a common indication of Celiac Disease in adults and children. Patients can suffer from Dry mouth syndrome, which can result in tooth decay and atrophic glossitis, a condition noted for a smooth, shiny, red tongue. 

If left untreated, Celiac Disease can also lead to the development of pharyngeal, mouth, and esophageal cancers.

How can this be fixed?

Celiac Disease does not have a cure, but lifestyle changes allow most people to live symptom-free. Adopting a gluten-free diet is the only way to treat the disease, and it must be followed rigorously.

Where else is gluten found?

Patients adopting a gluten-free diet must know that gluten is found in many different foods, including soy sauce, salad dressings, condiments, french fries, grain-based alcohol, bouillon or soup mixes, imitation meat, and seafood. Additionally, gluten is also in certain medications. Because of the extensive list of non-gluten-free foods, your medical practitioner will likely advise you to consult a celiac disease specialist for assistance with a dietary plan. 

A thorough oral examination allows dentists to diagnose Celiac Disease and refer you to a physician. If you think that you or your child has  Celiac Disease, then make an appointment to come and see us at Cakmes Dental Studio in Knoxville, TN.

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Cancer Prevention Month

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National Cancer Prevention Month happens every February, and it’s a time to acknowledge various types of cancer, work on prevention methods, and focus on living the healthiest life possible. As dentists, we have specialized knowledge on all things oral, including oral cancer, so that’s where our focus will lie. 

 

Oral cancer is not as widespread as many other types, including breast, lung, and skin cancer, but it still accounts for about three percent of cancer cases per year, over 50,000 new cases. 

 

Oral cancer is caused by squamous cells (flat, thin cells that line the mouth and throat) growing uncontrollably in the oral cavity and oropharynx. The leading causes of the expedited growth are tobacco and heavy alcohol use, HPV, sun exposure, and age. 

 

The symptoms of early-stage oral cancer are quite common. If they linger for more than two weeks, you should see your dentist or doctor. The most common symptoms include:

  • Sores or lumps in your mouth, throat, or lips
  • Red or white patch(es) in your mouth
  • Trouble chewing, swallowing, or speaking
  • Trouble moving your tongue or jaw
  • Numbness in any area of your mouth
  • Constant sore throat feeling

 

As mentioned, many of these symptoms are pretty standard. For example, a sore throat happens for various reasons, and TMJ can result in difficulty moving your jaw. Still, if these symptoms continue or worsen, it’s crucial to get them checked by a professional. 

 

The best ways to avoid oral cancer are to take care of your mouth the same way you take care of your body. Proper dental hygiene goes a long way and limits alcohol use and never uses tobacco products. Oral cancers are most common in men and women over 40, so it’s essential to take extra precautions once you’ve reached that age. Talk to your dentist about any concerns you may have at every checkup. 

The dentists at Cakmes Dental Studio are the best in the business and will work with you to keep your mouth as healthy as possible. If you have any questions or have experienced any symptoms mentioned above, reach out to us. We can help determine if oral cancer is in play or something else causing your issues and come up with a solution to keep you on the right path.

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Use Your Dental Benefits Before the End of the Year!

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It’s hard to believe, but there are just a few weeks of the year left! With that comes last-minute gift shopping, spending time with family, and making sure that you’ve used your medical, dental, and vision benefits.

 

Most people know, but many forget that you pay for your dental insurance whether you use it or not – so you might as well use it! Dental health is a big factor in overall health, and it can even play a role in your mental health and social life. 

 

Depending on your insurance, you’ll see varying levels of coverage, but most plans will allow for at least two cleanings and one x-ray exam each year. If you need or want work beyond that, many dental insurance benefits cover a large majority of the cost of preventative dental care treatments, if not the entire cost. 

 

Preventative care treatments typically include:

  • Routine cleanings
  • Examinations
  • Sealants
  • Fluoride treatments
  • Periodontal care
  • X-rays
  • Oral cancer screenings
  • Mouthguards
  • Patient education

 

When it comes to general dental care, insurance typically covers around 50 to 80% of the cost of treatment. 

 

General dental care treatments typically include: 

  • Tooth-colored fillings
  • Porcelain inlays onlays
  • Porcelain crowns and bridges 
  • Dental implants 
  • Removable partials
  • Dentures
  • Root canals 
  • Minor tooth extractions
  • Cerec restoration 

 

Regardless of the type of treatment you need, it is important to remember that although you pay for dental insurance that does not mean that your insurance benefits roll over from year to year. If you don’t use your benefits before the year ends, you will likely miss out on the services your insurance can help cover. 

 

At Cakmes Dental Studio we provide all of the services listed above and more, and would love nothing more than to help you take care of your dental needs and help you end every year feeling confident in your smile! 

 

The end of one year and the beginning of a new one are always the perfect time to evaluate your progress; whether that be your progress at work, your physical health, your mental health, or even the relationships you’ve built, evaluating what you have done in the past year and what you hope to achieve in the future are healthy ways to establish goals and keep yourself accountable. 

 

Take care of yourself, focus on your goals, and take advantage of your dental benefits before the year ends! Book an appointment at Cakmes Dental Studio by calling us at (865) 584-6163 or by filling out this form! There’s still time to end the year on the right note, with a healthy and beautiful smile at the center of it all. 

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The Best Ways to Fix Bad Breath

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Do you find yourself constantly reaching for mints or gum throughout the day? As a dental studio, we are well versed in how embarrassing, uncomfortable, and difficult bad breath can be. Luckily, at Cakmes Dental Studio, we also know the cures for it. 

Good Oral Hygiene

Pretty much everything comes back to having good oral hygiene, so much so that we’ve detailed it in previous blogs! As a refresher, you should brush your teeth at least twice a day (don’t forget your tongue!) and floss at least once for the healthiest mouth. If you’re finding that this isn’t enough to fight off that halitosis, try brushing your teeth after every meal or strong drink, such as coffee; try to limit the amount of coffee, alcohol, and soft drinks you consume.

Also, ensure that you drink plenty of water throughout the day, as this can help prevent bacteria build-up. Water is the number one stimulator of saliva, which also helps to fight off bacteria. You may notice that your breath smells and tastes worse when your mouth is dry, and these are the reasons why! 

Home Remedies

If these daily routines still aren’t cutting it, there are more things that you can do at home to help reduce your halitosis. The first is to get a new (and possibly better) toothbrush. In 2021, we recommend using an electric toothbrush and tossing the manual brush to the side. The electric toothbrush helps reach more places than a manual toothbrush; it can remove more plaque buildup from your teeth and gums and ensures that you brush for a full two minutes each time. 

Ensure that you replace your toothbrush head every three to four months; new brushes remove more plaque than a heavily used one and firm bristles are more effective against preventing bacterial growth. Using an older toothbrush or toothbrush head could easily contribute to your bad breath, as you are essentially brushing your teeth with extra bacteria and fungal particles. 

Visit Your Dentist

You should schedule routine cleanings twice a year to ensure that your teeth and gums are in the best health possible. If all of the above remedies don’t work, let your dentist know! Our tools can provide a deeper cleaning and more plaque and bacterial removal. In addition, we know other tricks of the trade for fighting bad breath, such as discontinuing the use of specific medicines (as mentioned in a recent Ted Lasso episode!).

No one wants bad breath, and luckily, there are many ways to fight against it. If you or someone you know is suffering from halitosis, give these at-home remedies a shot! If you’re still not happy, head to our Knoxville, TN studio for a deeper look and a more personalized diagnosis. We’re here to help your oral hygiene be the best it can be, and minty fresh breath goes right along with that. Give us a call to schedule your next appointment or ask any questions you may have about fighting halitosis or any other ailments your mouth may present to you.

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Everything You Need to Know About Dental Implants

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It sounds a little scary, but a dental implant surgery can be an incredibly effective procedure for people who have lost teeth and want the security and aesthetics of having their smile back after losing a tooth or teeth. Let’s learn about dental implants, how they work, and how to care for them after completing the dental implant process.

 

What is a dental implant? 

A dental implant is a replacement for the root or roots of a tooth. The implant is secured in your jawbone and utterly invisible to people when you smile. The implants are then used to secure crowns, bridgework, or dentures. Dental implants restore the mouth to optimal function, stabilizing the bone, tissues, and teeth by supporting the tooth’s root structure. At Cakmes Dental Studio, we provide both Implant Crowns and Implant Supported Dentures.

 

Am I a candidate for dental implants?

If you’ve lost teeth, you might be a candidate for dental implants. Other important considerations are that you have adequate bone to secure the implants, have healthy oral tissue, and don’t have any health conditions that would affect bone healing. 

 

What is the process for dental implants? 

The first step in the dental implant procedure is preparing the site, where the implant is put in the bone and covered with a healing cap. While it heals, we can put in a temporary tooth to fill in the space and preserve the look of your healthy smile. Then the crown or dentures are secured in place once the bone has healed (osseointegration). Your tooth and your smile are now restored to optimal shape and function. Note that these steps and the procedure in their entirety often require multiple appointments.

 

How do I care for my dental implant? 

It’s crucial, as it is with all dental procedures, to continue practicing excellent oral hygiene. Keep your implants and natural teeth and gums clean. Also, keep your regular dental appointments, cleanings, and checkups to ensure the proper functioning of your implants. Finally, avoid bad dental habits like chewing on ice or hard candy or staining your teeth with products like tobacco and caffeine. 

 

The primary benefit of implants is creating excellent support for your new teeth because the bone has healed tightly around the implant. If you have lost teeth and are interested in restoring your smile with dental implants, contact us to learn more about our implant process or call us at (865) 584-6163 to schedule an appointment. 

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Routine Tooth Extractions

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Keeping your original teeth is always preferable, but sometimes, routine extractions are necessary. When a tooth has been damaged from trauma or disease, baby teeth are out of place, or orthodontic treatment is needed, routine extractions may be the best solution to ensure that your smile stays healthy. This procedure is routine and simple but it’s a good idea to know what to expect during and after a tooth extraction procedure. 

When a Routine Tooth Extraction is Necessary

There are many reasons why a tooth may need to be extracted. In the case of trauma or injury where a tooth is fractured or cracked, extraction may be the best solution. Sometimes, the cause of a tooth extraction may be due to disease. Gum disease, untreated cavities, and infections may all result in a damaged tooth that requires a routine extraction procedure. If baby teeth grow out of place or you’re undergoing an orthodontic treatment, your dentist may decide that tooth extractions are needed to ensure that your teeth have enough room to grow or shift to their proper positions. 

What to Expect During the Procedure

Routine tooth extractions are done in-office and typically only require local anesthesia around the tooth area. Once the area is numb and your dentist has a good idea of what the tooth and root look like, they will begin the procedure. After using a tool to loosen your tooth, forceps will be used to actually remove the tooth. If necessary, your tooth may be removed in several pieces depending on the details of your case. Patients can expect to feel pressure around the area but should not feel any pain during the procedure. Once completed, your dentist will apply gauze and stitches, if needed, to the extraction site to help the blood clot formation process.

What a Typical Recovery Period Looks Like

After having a tooth extracted, you should plan to rest for at least 24 hours, avoid straws, rinsing, and spitting in order to allow the blood clot to form properly. Take any medications as prescribed by your dentist and focus on eating soft foods that will not irritate the extraction site. Patients should be sure to follow up with their dentist as needed after the procedure. 

At Cakmes Dental Studio, our goal is to help our patients achieve the smile they’ve always wanted by offering each individual the highest quality care available. When a routine tooth extraction is necessary, you can trust that our team has the experience and most advanced technology to ensure that the process is successful. Visit our website to learn more about the many services we offer and to schedule an appointment.

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National Children’s Dental Health Month

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February is National Children’s Dental Health Month, which serves to remind parents, caregivers, and healthcare workers why taking children to the dentist and helping them maintain proper dental health is so important. Developing positive habits at a young age will follow children as they age, ensuring that they keep happy, healthy smiles all their lives. 

Children should be taken to the dentist as soon as their first tooth grows in or before their first birthday, according to the American Dental Association (ADA). This allows the dentists to identify any potential areas of concern, such as tooth or gum decay. The dentist will also help teach caregivers how to properly clean their child’s teeth. Children’s teeth should be brushed twice a day for around 2 minutes each time. The amount of fluoride toothpaste will depend on the age of the child but can vary from just a smear to a pea-sized amount. 

Some children may not want to brush their teeth every morning and evening. However, there are several ways that you can make teeth cleaning more enjoyable. One great way to get children excited to brush their teeth is to make brushing and flossing a fun routine that they can look forward to. For example, try letting your child pick out their own toothbrush (just make sure it’s ADA approved!). You could also try playing a song for 2 minutes which can help reinforce the amount of time that should be spent brushing.

Education is key to help children understand why taking care of their oral health should be a priority. If you’re unsure about where to start, the ADA has worksheets, activities, and a planning guide that can help caregivers and teachers promote good oral health to children. 

Just like with adults, preventative care is the best way to maintain proper oral health in children. In addition to brushing and flossing, it’s a good idea to limit your child’s intake of sugary foods and drinks. It may be shocking to learn that around 42% of children ages 2-11 have some amount of tooth decay. Water is always the best drink option, as most town water sources contain fluoride which helps contribute to healthy teeth. Regular checkups are also essential for addressing any concerns early on.

At Cakmes Dental Studio, we’re committed to providing you and your family with the best dental care possible. If you have any oral health needs or concerns, feel free to get in contact with our office. You can visit our website or call us at (865) 584-6163 for any questions you may have or to set up an appointment.

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New Year’s Resolution – Head to the Dentist!

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The new year is the perfect time to make a resolution to take better care of yourself. People frequently overlook their teeth, gums, and overall oral health when considering their well-being. While it can be easy to put off going to the dentist, ignoring any dental problems can lead to much more significant issues in the future. This year, make a New Year’s resolution for 2021 to step foot into the dentist’s office and make your dental health a priority. 

A recent survey by the American Dental Association found that around 42% of Americans don’t go to the dentist as often as they would like to. Many adults assume that if they are not experiencing tooth or gum pain, their oral health must be fine. However, having a routine checkup is essential to proper dental health and can prevent future issues down the road. When you frequently skip yearly or bi-yearly dentist appointments, you put yourself at a higher risk of gum disease, tooth decay, and possible infections. Your dentist will be able to identify any potential concerns and can address them before the issue becomes more serious.

The previous year was hard on so many of us, especially when it comes to finances. Being able to pay for medical visits and checkups is a major concern for a lot of people. If you have dental insurance, you will generally have 2 covered visits to the dentist per year for routine checkups and cleanings. Additionally, preventative care is a much cheaper alternative to having to pay thousands of dollars when a dental condition requires more expensive treatment. Practicing good dental hygiene and making sure to visit the dentist routinely will save you money in the long run. 

Having a dentist appointment during COVID may understandably make some people hesitant to visit in-person. Most dental practices follow strict CDC and ADA guidelines to ensure that patients feel safe throughout the entirety of their appointment. Here at Cakmes Dental Studio, we are taking every precaution so that our guests feel comfortable during their visit. Read more about our safety policies here

Don’t delay in scheduling your 2021 dental cleaning and get a headstart on a new year of healthy teeth and gums. Making an appointment or consultation with Cakmes Dental Studio is easy! Call (865) 584-6163 to schedule an appointment or visit our website to schedule an appointment online and let us help you achieve a year of a healthier smile!

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Time Sensitive Dental Care

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Dental care is critical and matters to your overall health as much as any other sector of health. A toothache, jaw pain, or mouth pain can affect your everyday life, and it is effortless to push aside a dental appointment until necessary. Especially with the COVID-19 pandemic, many people think they don’t have the options or opportunities to visit the dentist.

At Cakmes Dental Studio, we are here to help no matter what. We have committed to keeping our office exceptionally clean and follow and exceed all COVID-19 guidelines. We understand that dental care is time-sensitive, and we are available for appointments through our website or if you give us a call. Taking care of your oral health can make a huge difference in your overall health and everyday life, and we prioritize that at Cakmes Dental Studio.

Some time-sensitive dental care that should be taken care of immediately is painful toothaches, mouth or face swelling, teeth or face injuries, or broken or lost fillings. Other time-sensitive dental care can be seen as broken teeth, bleeding or swollen gums, gum disease, as well as severe pain to the point that you can’t eat or sleep. Tooth pain can be a sign of various diseases like tooth decay, an infection, or something worse. This is a common time-sensitive issue that we can take care of immediately. 

If you need some pointers on how to keep your oral health in tip-top shape at home, we have many tips for you. Flossing should be more of a priority than we know you think it is. Regular brushing and flossing can help remove plaque, which damages teeth and gums. Avoiding sugary foods and drinks, as well as tobacco, can eliminate several health issues, including tooth and gum disease. Of course, a simple tip is brushing your teeth morning and night; we suggest making sure that you use toothpaste with fluoride in it to help prevent cavities. Try practicing tongue cleaning at home, too. For best results, you can use a tongue cleaner or a soft-bristle toothbrush. This can make a huge difference in your overall health.

Remember, at Cakmes Dental Studio, we prioritize your overall health and are here for any dental needs you may have, including those that are time-sensitive. If you need to come into the office, call us at 865-584-6163 or visit our website to request an appointment. 

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  • (865) 588-8202
  • 6230 Highland Place Way
    Suite 201
    Knoxville, TN 37919





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