Political Teeth

Mouth Full of Wood?

Happy President’s Day!  President’s Day is often a day for people to sleep in late, hang with friends, and enjoy one less day of work.  However, the origin and history of President’s day is often forgotten, and Drs. Versman, Heller, and Beckman want to share with you the true meaning on this holiday as well as some fun dental facts about our beloved presidents.

The beginning of President’s Day started with George Washington’s birthday becoming a federal holiday in 1879.  His birthday was celebrated on the actual day of February 22nd; however, on January 1, 1971, the federal holiday changed to the third Monday in February.  This date places it between February 15 and 21 so it never falls on Washington’s actual birthday.  The change worked out well though as it was then renamed as “Presidents’ Day” to honor the birthdays of both Washington and Lincoln. Lincoln’s birthday is on February 12th so President’s Day is a good middle ground to celebrate the birth of two of the most influential presidents in history.

Drs. Versman, Heller, and Beckman love to look back on history but specifically on dental history.  Not only is George Washington the reason for this extra day off work, but Washington has some interesting dental facts and misconceptions.

Washington’s teeth has seemed to be a well discussed and misleading topic.  Many people are aware that Washington wore dentures.  In fact, during Washington’s inauguration he only had 1 single real tooth.  George Washington could really have used Dr. Versman, Dr. Heller, and Dr. Beckman’s help by providing some dental implants, but back then he did not have many options nor knowledge on proper oral hygiene.

It was also believed that Washington’s dentures were made out of wood until researchers in Baltimore performed laser scans on a set of the dentures at the National Museum of Dentistry.  What were they made out of then?  The scan revealed gold, ivory, lead, human, and animal teeth as ingredients for these famous chomps.  The dentures also had springs and bolts to assist Washington with opening and closing.  During the times of Washington’s life, these dentures were very high tech; however, dental implants have evolved greatly over time and Drs. Versman, Heller, and Beckman provide the highest quality and lifelong lasting dental implants to their Aurora patients (without wood, lead, or animal teeth).

Washington resorted to the use of dentures for multiple reasons.  At Periodontal Associates, our patients come to Drs. Versman, Heller, and Beckman for dental implants as the result of physical harm, gum disease, grinding, bone loss, or other factors.  In George Washington’s case, he was an avid horseman which involved some physical accidents, and oral hygiene practices were not what they are today causing him to severe gum disease.

Many people, including other presidents, suffered the consequences from improper oral care.  For example, Ulysses S. Grant smoked 20 cigars a day!  Little did he know that this habit would ultimately cause his death due to oral and throat cancer.  Smoking is a habit that Drs. Versman, Heller, and Beckman strongly suggest their Aurora patients to stray from as  it results in not only cancers but severe gum disease. At Periodontal Associates we know that research has indicated that smoking and tobacco use is one of the most significant factors in the development and progression of gum disease. In addition to smokers experiencing a slower recovery and healing rate, smokers are far more likely to suffer from calculus (tartar) build up on teeth, deep pockets in the gingival tissue and significant bone loss.  If only Ulysses S. Grant was able to come to our office in Aurora, CO think of the way we could help him!

But on a lighter note, did you know that Ulysses S. Grant loved to play ding-dong ditch?  He would ring the doorbell at the White House and then run and hide.  I guess no matter our position or age, we are all still kids at heart.

Periodontal Associates honors George Washington and former presidents for their good influences on our country, and it is nostalgic for Drs. Versman, Heller, and Beckman to look back on not only America’s history but the also the history of dental health and technology.  Luckily, Periodontal Associates contains specialists in providers of dental implants and treating gum disease without the uses of wood or ivory.  To learn more about the latest in dental implants and how to prevent periodontitis, please contact us at (303) 755-4500 or visit our website at www.periodontalhealth.com. We highly encourage you to call or click here to make an appointment to see Drs. Versman, Heller, or Beckman at our office in Aurora, CO, serving the Denver metro area.   We look forward to helping you have a smile worthy to be placed on the dollar bill!

Eating Disorders and your Teeth

Eating Disorders and your Teeth

It is currently estimated that 10 million Americans are affected today by an eating disorder such as bulimia, anorexia, and binge eating.  The consequences from such destructive eating habits range wildly and are dangerous to one’s health.  One of the first symptoms of pain and discomfort are felt from the damage done to teeth and gums.  A dentist, such as Dr. Ken Versman, Dr. Doug Heller, and Dr. Eric Beckman, can be the first to detect these harmful changes and help someone dealing with an eating disorder make the first steps towards improving their health. Periodontal Associates wants to help you identify some leading eating disorders and how such habits can lead to gum disease and/or the need for dental implants.
Bulimia involves alternating periods of overeating (or binge eating) followed by purging.  The fluctuation of high calories followed by expulsion is traumatic to the digestive system which includes the mouth.  Purging the high fat and sugar contents of a binge can be done by self-induced vomiting, diuretics, and/or the abuse of laxatives.  The most common solution for most is vomiting, and by doing so, the contents of food along with the acidic stomach hrejuices are then exposed to the sensitive tissues in the gums and teeth.  Studies have found that up to 89% of bulimic patients show signs of tooth erosion, according to the National Eating Disorders Association.  Although Drs. Versman, Heller, and Beckman can do many things to transform a smile, replacing enamel on teeth is not a possibility.
Anorexia involves restricting food and caloric intake in order to maintain a thin body image.  This can also include the same habits as bulimia with binge eating and purging; however, persons with anorexia often starve themselves.  In fact, anorexia is the highest psychiatric disorder resulting in death.
The negative side effects caused by both of these eating habits are destructive and obvious on teeth.  With deprivation or purging, the body is robbed of adequate amounts of minerals, vitamins, proteins, and other nutrients necessary for good health.  The weaker the body, the weaker the immune system and organ function.  Periodontal disease (gum disease) is then harder for the body to fight off.  The acid from the stomach breaks down any healthy gum tissues leading to gum loss, bone loss, and eventually the loss of teeth.  Drs. Versman, Heller, and Beckman unfortunately have many patients that needed dental implants as a result of the acidic oral environment and lack of nourishment.  Research studies have  also shown that there is also a strong association between periodontal disease and other chronic conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, pregnancy complications and respiratory disease.  With an already suppressed immune system, such conditions can be detrimental.
Salivary glands can become swollen and xerostomia (or dry mouth) can occur.  Lesions on soft tissues may begin to appear and gums will often begin to bleed.  The teeth may become more translucent as poor diet and a high acidic environment erodes the enamel.  Enamel is irreplaceable and results in sensitivity to hot or cold.  As enamel fades away, the teeth can then become more brittle which can result in future cracks and breaks.  When a tooth becomes so fragile and painful, a visit to Periodontal Associates in Aurora is needed as the tooth may need to be extracted and replaced with a dental implant.
Drs. Versman, Heller, and Beckman, or your dentist, can be the first to spot these dangerous symptoms.  In order to help persons dealing with such eating disorders smile again and keep their teeth strong and beautiful, Periodontal Associates wants to share some thoughts on how to treat the oral health problems resulting in these dietary habits.
– Patients who purge or vomit should never brush their teeth immediately after vomiting.  Instead, rinse with baking soda to contrast again the high acidity from stomach juices
– Patients should be counseled on their daily oral and overall hygiene routine.
– Patients should have an oral exam to assess current damages done and future treatment needs to help fight gum disease, sensitivity, or replace severely diminished teeth with dental implants.
– Patients should be set up on a frequent recall or hygiene schedule at offices such as Periodontal Associates.
If you are concerned about a friend or family member or you are seeking more information regarding eating disorders and health concerns, Dr. Versman, Dr. Heller, and Dr. Beckman urge you to contact the National Eating Disorder Association.  If you have suffered from a disorder in the past, please visit Periodontal Associates in Aurora, CO to maintain bi-annual exams and hygiene appointments. To schedule your next cleaning, please call us at (303) 755-4500.

Sporty Smiles

Shocking Sport Smiles
Most missing teeth occur from the progression of severe periodontal or gum disease.  However, there are plenty of athletes walking around sporting gap-tooth grins like trophies.  Physical trauma is the likely cause to missing teeth in sport participants as blows to the mouth can kill roots of teeth, crack teeth, or completely remove them.  Let’s first take a look at some memorable sport smiles before learning how these blunders can be avoided or fixed by dental implant professionals likes Drs. Versman, Heller, and Beckman.
Bobby Clarke
It is no shock to learn that hockey players are the most victimized with gaping holes in their mouths.  With 6 ounces of frozen rubber flying 100 mph at someone’s face, shattering a smile is to be expected.  One of the most recognized grins in hockey would be of Bobby Clarke.  In the 1970’s, Bobby was photographed lifting the Stanley Cup for the Flyers.  His image solidified the cool reputation of having a toothless smile. (I am hopeful this moment will happen next year but for our Denver’s own, Colorado Avalanche!)
Another remarkable hockey player to overcome the pain of physical trauma would have to be Duncan Keith.  This defenseman lost SEVEN teeth during the 2010 Western Conference Final.  His winning mentality propelled him to block a shot on goal with his face.  The wildest part was the fact that he then returned to play only minutes after the blow.
Duncan Keith

The list of toothless grins in hockey is never ending.  The sport is built for oral consequences, but hockey is not the only athletic event to cause dental harm. Sliding, kicking, and head balls are a recipe for disaster in soccer.  Soccer players are not required to wear mouth guards, but unless you want to have a visit with Drs. Versman, Heller, and Beckman for dental implants, you better opt yes to this smile saving protection.  A cringe worthy moment in soccer occurred with Paulo Jorge.  Playing a heartfelt game against Madrid, he leapt for an interception, but instead of the ball, he was met with the solid force of the opposing player’s head.  Paulo had two teeth shot out from his mouth.  Then on the sidelines, the blunt force killed the root of another tooth allowing Paulo to horridly and casually pluck another tooth from his gums.

Paulo Jorge

 

Gareth Thomas

A sport not well integrated into the American culture, but large in Europe, known as rugby is another full contact sport with little hopes to avoid injuries, including oral injuries. Gareth Thomas is a great example of a smile gone wrong.  He was the captain for Wales, and he has a wicked reputation on the field as his grin is an example of his fearless interaction. Luckily, mouth guards are now required for all rugby games.

Balls and pucks are nothing compared to the furry of fists. Mike Tyson knows this all too well. Boxing brings not only the need for future dental implants but periodontal work as well.  The mouth and gums get so bruised and cut that the gums experience recession and inflammation.  Although this happens to most boxers in the ring, Mike Tyson lost a fight in his Tiger’s cage. Kiki Tyson told the Review-Journal that Tyson lost his famous gold tooth “when his tiger, Kenya, head-butted him.” Whatever the cause of missing teeth or whoever the culprit for its demise, Periodontal Associates is the place to have it corrected.

Dr. Versman, Dr. Heller, and Dr. Beckman are the leading dental implant providers in Denver, CO.  Their office in Aurora is a central location to help out athletes and patients all surrounding the Denver metro area. Although basketball players were not highlighted, they are not spared the need for dental implants caused from hard play.  Nuggets Basketball team members have been given brand new smiles at Periodontal Associates because no one other than Drs. Ken Versman, Doug Heller, and Eric Beckman are trusted to handle such precious idols in Denver.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding sports injuries or how to protect against them just call our Aurora office at (303) 755-4500.  Drs. Versman, Heller, and Beckman advise that all participants of sports take proper precaution by using mouth guards, especially if you have no reservations on the field. Also, teeth and gums can only be a strong and healthy as you allow them.  The better the oral hygiene, the stronger the gums and their ability to hang on to your teeth.

If you have already become a victim of missing teeth, Periodontal Associates is here to help.  Our patients come from different age ranges and with different origins of tooth loss.  Dental implants are a permanent and lifelong lasting fix to feeling complete again.  Let us transform your smile so that your reputation is only about your athletics and not your grin.

Have you seen Dr. Doug Heller on TV?

Here’s Dr. Heller on The Wellness Hour talking about replacing missing teeth with dental implants. In this clip he speaks on how Periodontal Associates – The Dental Implant Team is on the the cutting edge of dental implants and overall periodontal health treatment. He also shares how drastically his patients’ lives have changed after getting dental implants.

Dr. Heller has been practicing periodontics in Aurora, Colorado for over 20 years at Periodontal Associates – The Dental Implant Team. If you have questions about dental implants call 303-755-4500 or request an appointment


Did you know this about dental implants?

  • Dental implants have the same look, feel, and function of natural teeth.
  • Dental implants can provide you with comfort, convenience and confidence. Dr. Heller says, “dental implants are the 8th wonder of the world” because dental implants are matched exactly to your own teeth, and restore your smile to its optimal state. Dental implants can renewed self-confidence and peace of mind.
  • Drs. Ken Versman, Doug Heller, and Eric Beckman are uniquely qualified to provide a full range of implant dentistry procedures.They have been performing a full range of implant dentistry for more than 20 years in the Denver/Aurora, Colorado area.
  • Drs. Versman and Heller were one of the first U.S. dentists to study directly with the inventors of today’s implants. They have educated dentists, periodontists, and dental students about dental implants and implant procedures for many years, and have lectured on the subject in the Denver/Aurora, Colorado area, nationally and internationally!

    At Periodontal Associates – The Dental Implant Team,  we are the market leader and we are driving the development of new dental implant standards and protocols. Give us a call at 303-755-4500 or request an appointment today!