How dentistry can help patients with sleep disorders

Taking a deeper look at sleep…

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Have you ever taken such an interest in something that you have wanted to learn all you can about it?

At Mitchell Dentistry, we were among the first in our community to talk to our patients about the dangers of sleep apnea and how we might be able to help with this life threatening disorder. For several years, we have worked with area physicians, and have introduced ever evolving oral appliances to ease the situation for many patients. We’ve talked with many who are relieved about breathing better – and many more who are excited that their loved ones have stopped snoring all night!

All three of us, Dr. Yolanda, Dr. Joe and I, are excited about a three-day conference we will soon be attending in Arizona. We will amp up our education with the latest courses on aberrant breathing – when awake and asleep – and its impact on our patients’ health. This seminar will help us move beyond sleep appliances and into a new realm of sleep medicine.

We will learn to recognize breathing-disturbed sleep and the associated anatomic “choke points” of respiration. The world’s leading experts on this issue will help us enhance our solid foundation and give us even more tools for controlling and resolving airway issues with the newest techniques in restorative dentistry.

According to Spear Education, among the things we will learn to bring back to our patients include:

  • Understanding how breathing-related disruption of sleep is not limited to apnea
  • How upper airway flow limitation creates an environment for poor sleep and chronic stress
  • The causes and correlation between the top 10 dental problems and dysfunctional breathing
  • The importance of breathing disordered sleep on the systemic, neurocognitive, and craniofacial development of our pediatric patients
  • Understanding the importance of nasal breathing, the damaging sequela of mouth breathing, and the strategies to promote proper function
  • A systematic approach to controlling and resolving sleep-induced airway issues

Those of you who know us know how much we love learning, and applying our newfound knowledge in our practice. We can’t wait to share ideas with you when we return from the conference.

As always, please call us with any questions or concerns. We love your feedback, so feel free to send your comments our way.

Best wishes from our Mitchell Dentistry family to yours!

All the best, Dr. Jim

 

 

 

 

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Collaboration results in spectacular smiles!

Working together, we can achieve your most natural, beautiful, unique smile through Digital Smile Design, a process founded and taught by Dr. Christian Coachman. At Mitchell Dentistry we have trained to use the techniques and digital technology of Dr. Coachman to bring you non-invasive procedures and a custom treatment plan to help accomplish your goals.

Our first step is to ensure that we have open and honest communication before any work is done. By using advanced digital technology, we can create multiple different models to simulate the intended results specifically for you.

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Following Dr. Coachman’s guidelines and letting you know what to expect has benefited our patients in the following ways:

  • High satisfaction with their new smile
  • Truly customized results – no two smile designs are exactly alike
  • A natural look that complements overall appearance
  • Increased confidence throughout the treatment process
  • Multidisciplinary approach preserves health and hygiene

Most patients report that they like having greater control over the outcome of their cosmetic treatment. We work together with a systematic approach for diagnosis, communication, treatment planning, execution, and case maintenance. Here is how the Digital Smile Design process works:

Step 1: Our team will take digital photos of your teeth and entire mouth from multiple angles

Step 2: You and Dr. Jim, Dr. Yolanda or Dr. Joe will review the photos using special software that allows us to begin demonstrating potential changes via a PowerPoint presentation

Step 3: A simulation of your smile after treatment will be rendered in a “digital mock-up” that reflects the proper height to width ratio of your mouth

Step 4: Our team takes impressions of your teeth and Dr. Mitchell translates the digital design onto the physical model to predict how you will look

Step 5: We will create a resin model to see how well the modeled treatments fit your teeth and your needs

Once you are happy with the final mock-up, our dentists will perform any necessary treatments according to the roadmap you and Dr. Mitchell developed through the Digital Smile Design process.

The bottom line is that you are the co-designer of your own treatment.

Dr. Coachman’s team explains it this way:

The concept is based upon the analysis of the patient’s facial and dental proportions, using a predetermined series of high quality digital photographs and videos understanding the relationship between teeth, gums, lips, smile with the facial features in motion and with emotion.

Digital drawings are easily made on the pictures to precisely communicate with the dental technician and team when designing the smile. Resulting in a clear, attractive and understandable treatment presentation for patients.

We love working with all the newest technology, and hope to continue this discussion with you very soon. As always, please call us with any questions or concerns. We love your feedback, so feel free to send your comments our way.

 

Best wishes from our Mitchell Dentistry family to yours!

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Dr. Joe, Dr. Yolanda and Dr. Jim Mitchell of Mitchell Dentistry, Fort Myers

All the best,

Dr. Jim

More about Dr. Coachman from http://www.DigitalSmileDesign.com

Dr. Christian Coachman received his DDS degree from the University of Sao Paulo Dental School in 2002. Before the DDS degree, he obtained his technician certificate in in Dental Prosthesis.

He participated in the ceramic specialization program at Ceramoart Training Center, mentored by Dr. Dario Adolfi. For his remarkable performance, he was invited to become instructor at this same school. In 2004, he was invited by Dr. David Garber, Ronald Goldstein, Maurice and Henry Salama (Team Atlanta/USA) to be the master ceramist in their laboratory, where he stayed for over four years.

Recently he has been working with renowned dentists around the world as Drs. Eric Van Dooren (Belgium), Galip Gurel (Turkey), Nizan Bichacho (Israel), Mauro Fradeani (Italy) and Marcelo Calamita (Brazil). Currently, he keeps a part time practice in Sao Paulo and make consults for companies developing products and implementing concepts. He developed the concept of the Digital Smile Design and has been invited to give hundreds of lectures around the world in the last few years on the topics of smile design, esthetic dentistry, and oral rehabilitation.

He has published several articles on esthetic dentistry, smile design, pink restorations, and implant rehabilitations.

 

The Joy of Designing Smiles

As Dr. Joe, Dr. Yolanda and I returned from this year’s AACD (American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry) Scientific Session in Toronto, we reflected on all that we learned about the latest advances for rejuvenating and restoring smiles. As long time accredited members of this prestigious organization, we have attended the annual conference for the past nine years, and we always come away inspired and eager to bring new ideas to our patients back home.

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Drs. Joe, Yolanda & Jim Mitchell of Mitchell Dentistry in Fort Myers attended the annual AACD2016 conference in Toronto to learn about the latest procedures and technology in cosmetic dentistry.

In Search of New Knowledge

Everyone on our staff is a lifelong learner, often on the leading edge of mastering the latest dental technologies.  Just looking at the AACD’s “teaser” videos before we left (http://www.aacd.com/conference) had us making notes about which sessions to attend.

Is it the concept of acquiring new knowledge that entices us? The possibility of adding new technology to our practice? The aspect of having a competitive edge by being among the first to learn new trends? Probably yes to all of the above.

Creating a Magical Smile

But the primary motivator for us is what happens when we apply our new-found knowledge to practical applications – to our patients. It is a magical experience when you see someone smile broadly, unselfconsciously, for the first time after they have had a restorative procedure. We hold up the mirror and right in front of our eyes, we see someone’s self-esteem shoot from 0 to a million – having the capability of bringing that kind of joy to an individual is truly amazing.

From the grandmother who can now smile at her grandchildren without them asking, “Grandma, why are your teeth so crooked?” to the highly trained business professional who credited achieving the job of his dreams with his restored missing teeth, we’ve played a small part in helping people transform themselves and transform their lives. It is one of the most rewarding and fulfilling parts of our practice.

So while I delighted in checking off the boxes on which hands-on workshops we planned to attend, and while we appreciated spending three days with the world’s most renowned experts on cosmetic dentistry, it’s the end result that is the most meaningful to us – seeing a bright, brilliant, brand new smile on a patient’s face.

Bringing Our Patients Breakthrough Technology

We learned so much and can’t wait to share new ideas and new technology with you! Let us know if you have any questions about cosmetic or restorative dentistry, and we will bring you up to date on the latest information.

All the best,

Dr. Jim

 

 

The Eyes Have It: Can dental cells repair the cornea?

Although it might sound like science fiction, scientists at the University of Pittsburgh have shown in mice that stem cells from dental pulp, the tissue from the inner part of the tooth, can be transformed into cells of the eye.*

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 Here’s what happened: the team collected dental stem cells from human wisdom teeth after routine extractions, and then induced the cells to turn into corneal cells called keratocytes. Weeks after injecting these cells into the eyes of mice, the researchers observed no signs of rejection, and the mice corneas appeared clear. The researchers also created cornea-shaped material that had similar properties to actual cornea tissue.

Why is this significant? This could turn out to be an important advancement since corneal blindness is the fourth leading cause of blindness in the world and is usually treated by using corneal transplants. Unfortunately, there is a shortage of donor corneas, and tissue rejection can result in permanent vision loss.

Time will tell if this science will be helpful to humans in the future. In the meantime, however, it lends credence to our Mitchell Dentistry philosophy that dentistry ties in to the big picture of overall health. Your teeth and your oral health are integrally connected to the rest of your body. While our focus is on your mouth, our concern is with all of you.

We are always interested in the latest science or technology related to oral health – so if you hear anything interesting, definitely let us know!

*The study was published in the journal Stem Cells Translational Medicine.

Sweet dreams: Sleep Medicine can help combat Sleep Apnea

“I don’t snore.” “Oh, no, not me!”

That’s exactly what we said until we got tested ourselves. It turns out that we, like millions of others, are afflicted with one of the nation’s most serious, yet overlooked, health issues: obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). Apnea literally means “cessation of breath,” an often life-threatening issue that can be resolved with oral appliance therapy.

At Mitchell Dentistry, the goal of sleep apnea treatment is to achieve healthy sleep.

At Mitchell Dentistry, the goal of sleep apnea treatment is to achieve healthy sleep.

We realized we had to get over any trepidation or embarrassment and learn how to deal with this issue. So we attended several continuing education classes and now know how to diagnose and in many cases, treat sleep apnea. First we learned how to administer a home sleep test that is read by a certified sleep physician. A copy of the report along with a recommendation is sent to the patient’s regular doctor. For mild to moderate cases, and even for some serious cases when the CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) is not tolerated, we can customize a sleep appliance that has demonstrated evidence-based positive results with many of our patients.

We learned about the severity of sleep apnea and strongly encourage our patients to get tested if you suspect anything. In fact, a study by The American Academy of Sleep Medicine shows that moderate to severe OSA is independently associated with an increased risk of stroke, cancer and death. Results of a 20-year follow-up study show that people with moderate to severe obstructive sleep apnea were four times more likely to die, nearly four times more likely to have a stroke, three times more likely to die from cancer, and 2.5 times more likely to develop cancer.

We want to protect our patients! So for those who snore or wake themselves gasping for breath, please let us assess if a dental appliance is the best course of action that can help you or your loved one. Ask us more about it when you come in.

All the best from Mitchell Dentistry!

 

New Year, New Science: The Latest in Dentistry and Health

Dentists give new meaning to the term “spit and polish” dentalimage We recently read a report from Dentistry Today that says UCLA researchers are working on a test that could have the ability to diagnose diseases like diabetes and cancer. It’s also possible the test could diagnose neurological disorders and autoimmune diseases. That means your dentist may soon be on the front lines to discover a diagnosis that can save your life. It turns out that saliva contains many of the same disease-indicating molecules that appear in blood. As a result, the test looks promising for diagnosing Type 2 diabetes and gastric cancers, specifically. The researchers used genomics and bioinformatics to analyze 165 million genetic sequences. The most valuable information that the researchers can use in the future is that saliva has a high medical value. This means that as dentists, we may soon be able to take saliva samples that can be tested for numerous diseases. And if that happens, disease diagnosis will be much simpler for you and your loved ones. Of course the scientists still need to conduct more research to fully understand the functions of the various RNAs and how we can best use this information in the future. We will share more with you when the research becomes available! All the best for a Happy New Year & a Healthy Smile from Mitchell Dentistry!

Breathe Easy!

Did you know that if you or your loved one snores loudly and feels tired after a full night’s sleep, the problem might be Sleep Apnea? According to the Mayo Clinic, sleep apnea is a potentially serious sleep disorder in which breathing repeatedly stops and starts. A new study by The American Academy of Sleep Medicine shows that moderate to severe obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is independently associated with an increased risk of stroke, cancer and death.


Womenman-sleepingHere’s the good news:

At Mitchell Dentistry we have launched a customized dental medical solution to help resolve obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). Although this is one of the nation’s most important health issues, it is often overlooked. Apnea literally means “cessation of breath,” an often life-threatening issue that can be resolved with oral appliance therapy.

To diagnose OSA, Drs. James, Yolanda and Joseph Mitchell first administer a home sleep test that is read by a certified sleep physician. A copy of the report along with a recommendation is sent to the patient’s regular doctor. For mild to moderate cases, and even for some serious cases when the CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) is not tolerated, the Mitchells customize a sleep appliance that has demonstrated evidence-based positive results.

Here’s what to look out for:

  • Excessive daytime sleepiness (hypersomnia)
  • Loud snoring, which is usually more prominent in obstructive sleep apnea
  • Episodes of breathing cessation during sleep witnessed by another person
  • Abrupt awakenings accompanied by shortness of breath, which more likely indicates central sleep apnea
  • Awakening with a dry mouth or sore throat
  • Morning headache
  • Difficulty staying asleep (insomnia)
  • Attention problems

If you or your loved one is experiencing any of those symptoms, Mitchell Dentistry can assess if a dental appliance is the best course of action. For more information visit www.MitchellDentist.com or call 239.324.0621.