Is Gum Recession Reversible? 

Gum recession, also known as gingival recession, is a common dental concern that many people face. It occurs when the gum tissue surrounding the teeth wears away or pulls back, exposing more of the tooth’s root. Gum recession can be distressing, and many patients want to know whether or not it’s reversible. To properly answer that, your dentist in Reno would want to know several things such as the cause of gum recession, before they can recommend a potential treatment to reverse it.

What Causes of Gum Recession

Gum recession can be triggered by several factors, both preventable and unavoidable. Some of the primary causes include:

Can Gum Recession Be Reversed? 

The extent to which gum recession is reversible largely depends on its underlying causes, severity, and how quickly you see your dentist in Reno for it. While it’s challenging to completely reverse gum recession in all cases, there are scenarios where it can be improved.

If gum recession is detected at an early stage and is primarily caused by poor oral hygiene habits, improvements in brushing, flossing, and regular dental cleanings might help prevent further recession and even promote some natural regrowth.

Addressing the root causes of gum recession is vital for potential reversal. Treating gum disease, adjusting misaligned teeth, or managing bruxism can halt the progression of recession and allow the gum tissue to heal and regenerate to some extent.

In more advanced cases where the gum recession is substantial and conservative measures aren’t sufficient, gum grafting can be considered. This surgical procedure involves taking tissue from another part of the mouth and attaching it to the receded gum area. This can help cover exposed tooth roots, reduce sensitivity, and improve the appearance of the gums.

Avoiding habits like aggressive brushing and smoking can prevent further gum recession and support the body’s natural healing processes.

How to Prevent Gum Recession

While complete reversal of gum recession may not always be possible, taking proactive steps to prevent its onset or progression is crucial for maintaining oral health. Here’s what you can do:

The possibility of reversing gum recession relies on various factors, including the underlying causes and the stage at which it’s addressed. While complete restoration might not always be achievable, early detection, appropriate treatment, and following good oral hygiene practices can help prevent further recession and promote gum tissue health.

Cheek Biting: Causes, Consequences, and Care

Cheek biting might seem like a harmless habit, but it can lead to various consequences if left unchecked. Whether it's a nervous tick or an unconscious behavior, understanding the causes, consequences, and proper care for cheek biting is essential to maintain your oral health and overall well-being. Your dentist in Reno is here to help. 

Causes of Cheek Biting

There are various things that can cause someone to habitually bite their cheek. Some of the most common causes include: 

Stress & Anxiety: One of the most common reasons for cheek biting is stress and anxiety. When we're stressed, we often seek ways to cope, and for some individuals, biting the inside of the cheek can become a subconscious mechanism to release tension.

Nervous Habits: Nervous habits like cheek biting can develop during childhood and persist into adulthood. It might start as a response to certain situations or emotions and then become ingrained over time.

Misaligned Teeth: Sometimes, misaligned teeth can inadvertently lead to cheek biting. When the teeth do not fit together properly, it can cause accidental biting of the cheeks while chewing or during other mouth movements.

Concentration & Deep Thought: Engaging in deep thought or concentration can sometimes cause people to bite their cheeks absentmindedly. The motion of the jaw might mimic the act of chewing, leading to unintentional biting.

Consequences of Cheek Biting

Even though cheek biting may seem like no big deal, your dentist in Reno knows that this habit can actually result in some significant oral health consequences.

Oral Tissue Damage: Continuous cheek biting can result in damage to the delicate tissues inside the mouth. This can lead to painful sores, ulcers, and even bleeding, making it uncomfortable to eat, speak, or perform regular oral hygiene routines.

Infections & Inflammation: Open sores created by cheek biting can serve as entry points for bacteria, potentially leading to infections and inflammation. These complications can exacerbate the discomfort and require medical intervention.

Scarring & Discoloration: Chronic cheek biting can cause scarring and discoloration of the affected areas over time. These marks might not only affect the appearance of the mouth but can also serve as a constant reminder of the habit.

Worsening of Dental Issues: If cheek biting is related to dental problems like misaligned teeth, it can aggravate these issues further. Biting the cheeks can put additional pressure on the teeth, potentially leading to more misalignment or wear.

Care & Management

Depending on the underlying cause of cheek biting, different methods can be used to help manage the habit and care for any damage.   

Stress Management: Since stress and anxiety are significant triggers for cheek biting, focusing on stress management techniques can be helpful. Regular exercise, deep breathing, meditation, and hobbies can all contribute to reducing stress and the urge to bite your cheeks.

Behavioral Therapy: In cases where cheek biting has become a deeply ingrained habit, behavioral therapy or counseling might be beneficial. A mental health professional can work with you to identify triggers and develop strategies to overcome the habit.

Dental Intervention: If misaligned teeth or dental issues are contributing to your cheek biting habit, consider consulting a dentist in Reno. There are various treatments available such as mouthguards that can help address the root cause of the habit.

Oral Hygiene: Maintaining good oral hygiene is crucial, especially if you're prone to cheek biting. Clean your mouth regularly to prevent infections in case of any accidental injuries caused by biting.

Cheek biting might start as a seemingly harmless habit, but its consequences can have a significant impact on your oral health and overall well-being. By understanding the causes, recognizing the potential consequences, and taking appropriate care, you can work towards breaking free from this habit and preserving the health of your mouth. Whether it's through mindfulness, stress management, dental interventions, or behavioral therapy, there are various approaches to tackle cheek biting and promote a healthier, more comfortable oral environment.

What Causes Someone To Grind Their Teeth?

Imagine waking up with a sore jaw and feeling like you've just been in an intense boxing match with your own teeth. For millions of people around the world, this is an all too familiar scenario. Teeth grinding, or bruxism, is a common dental issue that affects individuals of all ages, but what causes this involuntary and often harmful behavior? From stress and anxiety to sleep disorders and dental misalignments, your dentist in Reno will uncover the intricate web of factors that drive people to clench and grind their teeth.


Stress has become an inseparable part of modern living, and it seems like we're all carrying a bit more of it every day. Surprisingly, this mounting stress often finds its way into our sleep, manifesting as teeth-grinding during the night. As we continuously face various stressors, our bodies respond by tensing up, and this tension can unconsciously transfer to our jaws while we sleep. Unresolved stress and anxiety are major contributors to bruxism, leaving us with painful consequences in the morning. Try implementing some stress management techniques to reduce stress levels and lower the risk of habitual grinding. 

Sleep Disorders

Teeth grinding and sleep disorders often go hand in hand. Sleep apnea, a condition where breathing repeatedly stops and starts during sleep, is particularly linked to bruxism. When the airway becomes partially blocked, it can lead to micro-awakenings, causing the individual to clench their jaw and grind their teeth. Treatments from your dentist in Reno such as a custom nightguard can create a protective barrier between your upper and lower teeth.

Bite Problems

Sometimes, the alignment of our teeth, a misaligned bite, or dental issues can be the underlying cause of bruxism. When teeth don't fit together correctly, it creates an imbalance in the jaw, prompting the body to try and correct this misalignment by grinding the teeth. Dental conditions such as missing teeth or poorly fitting dental appliances can also trigger bruxism. Your dentist may recommend orthodontics or other restorative dentistry options to help correct your bite.

Subconscious Habits

Beyond stress and dental factors, teeth grinding can also be influenced by subconscious habits. Nail-biting, chewing on pens, or even clenching the jaw during periods of concentration can train the muscles to repeat these actions during sleep. Understanding these habits can lead to better self-awareness and potential behavior modifications to curb bruxism.

Teeth grinding, or bruxism can be a challenging condition to deal with, causing discomfort, pain, and potential dental issues. If you find yourself grappling with teeth grinding, it's essential to schedule an appointment with your dentist in Reno to identify the root cause. Managing stress, practicing relaxation techniques, and maintaining good sleep hygiene can all reduce bruxism episodes. Remember, your dental health is an integral part of your overall well-being, so take proactive steps to protect that radiant smile.

Can Dental Problems Contribute To Headaches And Migraines?

People who get a lot of headaches or have chronic migraines may be surprised to learn that a dental problem may be to blame. In fact, these two seemingly unrelated ailments can have a significant impact on each other, and recent research suggests that there may be a strong connection between them. While headaches and migraines are typically treated as medical concerns, there may be a reason to consult your dentist in Reno to get relief. 

The Link Between Dental Problems and Headaches

While it might not be immediately evident, your dental health and headaches could be interconnected in several ways. Let's explore some of the key factors that establish this intriguing link.

  1. Malocclusion and Dental Alignment

Malocclusion refers to a misalignment of the teeth, which can occur due to various reasons like genetics or improper oral habits. When your teeth are not correctly aligned, it can lead to an uneven distribution of biting forces. As a consequence, this places additional stress on certain teeth and the surrounding jaw muscles, potentially resulting in tension headaches or even migraines.

If a patient has malocclusion or misaligned teeth, a dentist can recommend orthodontic treatments like braces or clear aligners to correct the alignment. By achieving proper dental alignment, the uneven biting forces that contribute to headaches can be alleviated.

  1. Teeth Grinding and Clenching 

Teeth grinding, medically known as bruxism, is a common dental problem that often occurs during sleep or period of stress. The constant grinding and clenching of teeth can cause significant strain on the jaw joint and surrounding muscles, leading to headaches. The pressure exerted during bruxism can also radiate pain to the temples and forehead, mimicking the symptoms of tension headaches.

Dentists can address teeth grinding and clenching issues by providing patients with custom-made nightguards or splints. These dental appliances help protect the teeth from excessive wear and reduce the strain on the jaw muscles, potentially preventing headaches caused by bruxism.

  1. Temporomandibular Joint Disorder and Headaches 

The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is the hinge joint that connects your jaw to your skull. TMJ disorder can arise due to injury, arthritis, or teeth grinding, among other factors. TMJ-related headaches are often felt in the temples, behind the eyes, and even in the neck and shoulders. These headaches can be severe and have a migraine-like quality, making it crucial to address the underlying dental issues.

For patients suffering from temporomandibular joint disorders, dentists can offer various treatment options. This may include recommending lifestyle changes, physical therapy exercises, stress management techniques, or in some cases, dental appliances like splints to alleviate TMJ-related headaches.

  1. Dental Infections and Headaches 

Untreated dental infections, such as abscesses or gum disease, can lead to the spread of bacteria and inflammation in the oral cavity. The proximity of the oral region to the head means that these infections can easily affect the surrounding nerves and tissues, potentially triggering headaches or migraines.

For headaches caused by dental infections or gum disease, your dentist in Reno can perform necessary procedures, such as root canals or periodontal treatments, to eliminate the infection and reduce inflammation. By addressing these issues, the spread of bacteria and inflammation that may trigger headaches can be controlled.

  1. Impact of Oral Health on Overall Well-being

Beyond the direct links between dental problems and headaches, your oral health significantly influences your overall well-being. Poor oral hygiene can lead to various systemic health issues, such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes. These underlying health conditions can also contribute to headaches, making it essential to prioritize dental health as part of a comprehensive approach to headache management.

If your headaches or migraines are affecting your life, consider talking to your dentist in Reno. After all, dentists can make a significant impact in addressing dental problems that may be associated with headaches and migraines. Dental treatment may be just what you need in order to help reduce the number or severity of headaches and migraines. 

Are Some People More Likely to Get Cavities?

Cavities are a common oral health issue affecting people of all ages and typically require treatment from your dentist in Reno. While it may seem that some individuals are more likely to get cavities than others, the truth is that anyone can develop a cavity at any time, especially if proper preventive measures are not followed. However, several factors such as genetics, oral hygiene practices, and diet may make someone more or less likely to develop a cavity. 

The Role of Genetics

Genetics can play a role in determining the strength and structure of teeth, including the thickness of enamel and the shape of tooth cusps. Some individuals may inherit weaker enamel, making their teeth more susceptible to decay. Additionally, those with deeper cusps may also be more likely to get cavities because bacteria can hide more easily. On the other hand, people who inherit stronger tooth enamel may be at lower risk for developing cavities. However, keep in mind that genetics alone do not determine one's cavity risk. Even individuals with genetically strong enamel can develop cavities if proper oral hygiene practices are not followed.

Oral Hygiene Routine

Maintaining a consistent oral hygiene routine is vital for preventing cavities, even for those with naturally stronger tooth enamel. Individuals who brush their teeth at least twice a day and floss daily are more likely to avoid cavities than those who do not. Brushing and flossing every day effectively removes plaque and food particles, thus reducing the risk of decay. Neglecting oral hygiene practices can lead to the buildup of plaque, which contains bacteria that produce acids and contribute to tooth decay.

Diet & Habits

Watching what you eat and drink can also go a long way in preventing cavities. For example, a diet high in sugary and acidic foods such as soda feeds bacteria in the mouth which then produce acids. These acids erode tooth enamel and increase the risk of decay. However, nutrient-dense food such as fresh fruit, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins give teeth the necessary nutrients they need to build and sustain strong, protective enamel. Additionally, avoiding tobacco products and alcohol can also reduce the risk of cavities. 

Seeing Your Dentist in Reno

Visiting your dentist regularly for check-ups and cleanings is crucial for maintaining oral health and keeping cavities away. Professional dental cleanings will remove plaque and tartar from those hard-to-reach areas, reducing the risk of cavities. Also, dentists can provide preventive treatments like fluoride and sealants that add an extra layer of protection against decay. However, individuals who neglect regular dental visits or do not receive professional care may be at a higher risk of cavities. It is important for everyone, regardless of perceived cavity risk, to prioritize preventive dental care to ensure optimal oral health.

While factors like genetics, oral hygiene practices, and diet can influence cavity formation, proper preventive measures are key to maintaining good oral health for everyone. By adopting a consistent oral hygiene routine, making healthy dietary choices, and seeking regular dental care from your Reno dentist, individuals can significantly reduce their risk of developing cavities.

How Do You Maintain Oral Health In The Elderly?

As we get older, a lot will change throughout our bodies, and taking care of our health becomes a top priority. This also includes taking good care of our teeth and oral health. In fact, the elderly population faces unique challenges when it comes to oral care as they’re at higher risk of multiple dental concerns such as tooth decay, gum disease, oral cancer, and dry mouth. However, with proper knowledge and care from their dentist in Reno, seniors can maintain their oral health and enjoy a confident smile.

Get Regular Dental Check-ups

Regular dental check-ups are crucial for seniors to monitor their oral health and address any concerns promptly. Dental professionals can detect signs of dental issues such as oral cancer and gum disease early when they can still be treated easily and often very successfully. Additionally, their dentist in Reno will conduct professional cleanings and offer preventive treatments, both of which are necessary for maintaining a healthy mouth. 

Brush & Floss Every Day

It’s important to brush and floss your teeth every day no matter how old you are. Keeping up with those good habits into the senior years can help reduce the risk of oral health problems. Encourage the elderly to brush their teeth at least twice a day using a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste. Remind them to brush gently along the gumline and clean their tongue to remove bacteria. Flossing daily is also crucial for removing plaque and debris from between the teeth. If you have an elderly family member that’s having trouble brushing and flossing, talk to your dentist about alternative tools that may be easier to use such as an electric toothbrush or water flosser. 

Eat a Nutrient-Rich Diet

A healthy diet plays a significant role in maintaining both overall and oral health. Everyone, including seniors, should consume a nutrient-rich diet that consists of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and dairy products. These foods provide essential vitamins and minerals necessary for strong teeth and gums. Limiting sugary and acidic foods and beverages can help prevent tooth decay.

Be Aware of Medication Side Effects

It’s essential for seniors or their caregivers to inform their dentist about all medications they are taking as some medications can impact oral health. For example, dry mouth is a common side effect of medications or could result from a medical condition. Dry mouth can increase the risk of tooth decay and gum disease. Encourage seniors to stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water throughout the day. Chewing sugar-free gum or sucking on sugar-free candies can help stimulate saliva production.

Talk About Tooth Replacement Treatments

While it’s entirely possible for some people to keep their natural teeth throughout their lives, the truth is that tooth loss becomes more common as we get older. But there are many tooth replacement treatments available for those who do lose teeth, from dentures to bridges, or even dental implants. Your dentist in Reno will be able to help find the best tooth replacement option. 

Maintaining oral health in the elderly requires consistent oral hygiene routines, addressing dry mouth, eating a nutrient-rich diet, and regular dental check-ups. By implementing these essential tips, seniors can enjoy a healthy smile, improved well-being, and a better quality of life. Encouraging and supporting the elderly in their oral care efforts is crucial for promoting their overall health and helping them maintain their beautiful smiles for years to come.

What to Expect During a Dental Checkup

Your dentist in Reno will tell you that regular dental checkups are essential to maintaining good oral health. But for some patients, the thought of a dental checkup can be intimidating. That's why we want to take the time to explain what to expect during a dental checkup and help alleviate any anxiety or uncertainty you may have.

Step 1: Medical History Review 

At the beginning of your dental checkup, your dentist in Reno will review your medical history to gain a better understanding of any existing medical conditions or medications that may affect your dental health. This information will help us provide the best possible care for your individual needs.

Step 2: Visual Examination 

Next, your dental team will perform a visual examination of your teeth and gums. They will look for any signs of tooth decay, gum disease, or other oral health issues. This is also a good opportunity to discuss any concerns or questions you may have about your dental health.

Step 3: X-rays 

In some cases, your dental professional may recommend taking X-rays to get a more detailed look at your teeth and jawbone. X-rays can help identify issues that may not be visible during a visual examination, such as cavities or bone loss. They are safe, low-radiation images that can give us a closer look at what’s going on under the surface of your teeth. 

Step 4: Cleaning 

After the visual examination and X-rays (if necessary), it's time for a cleaning. Your dental hygienist will use special tools to gently remove any plaque or tartar buildup from your teeth. They will also polish your teeth to remove any surface stains and make them shine.

Step 5: Oral Cancer Screening 

During your dental checkup, your dental professional will also perform an oral cancer screening. This involves a visual examination of your mouth, lips, and throat to check for any signs of cancer or other abnormalities.

Step 6: Education and Prevention 

Finally, your dentist in Reno will provide education and prevention tips to help you maintain good oral health. This may include tips on brushing and flossing, diet and nutrition, and other oral health practices.

Regular dental checkups are essential to maintaining good oral health. Our team of experienced dental professionals will guide you through the process and provide personalized care to meet your individual needs. At our dental office, we understand that dental checkups can be intimidating for some patients. That's why we strive to create a welcoming and friendly environment for all of our patients. Our team is dedicated to providing personalized care that meets the unique needs of each individual patient.

If you're due for a dental checkup, don't hesitate to contact us today to schedule an appointment.

Understanding Dental Fillings: Types, Costs, and Maintenance

Regular checkups and cleanings with your dentist in Reno can do wonders at keeping your teeth healthy and beautiful. But the truth is, cavities and tooth damage can happen to anyone, and dental fillings may be the solution you need. Dental fillings are used to fill cavities and repair damaged teeth. They are an essential part of maintaining optimal oral health, as cavities can lead to more significant problems if left untreated. The type of filling you need will depend on your unique situation and preferences.

Types of Fillings

The most common types of dental fillings are amalgam, composite, and ceramic. Amalgam fillings are made of a mixture of metals and are the most affordable option. They are durable and long-lasting, but some people prefer not to use them due to their silver appearance. Composite fillings are made of tooth-colored resin and blend seamlessly with your natural teeth. They are more expensive than amalgam fillings, but many patients prefer them due to their aesthetic appeal. Ceramic fillings, also known as porcelain fillings, are the most expensive option but provide the most natural look. They are durable and long-lasting, and they do not stain over time.

To determine which filling is right for you, talk with your dentist in Reno. The type of dental filling you should get will vary depending on the size of the cavity and the location of the tooth. 

How to Care for Fillings

After getting a dental filling, it is essential to take care of it to ensure its longevity. Here are some tips on how to maintain your dental fillings:

Dental fillings are an essential part of maintaining optimal oral health, and they’re one of the most common procedures your dentist in Reno performs. With quick care, proper maintenance, and regular dental checkups, your dental fillings can last for many years. 

Is The Sun Good For Teeth?

Times have changed from the days in the 80s when people would lay out in the sun for hours, oftentimes without sunscreen. We’ve learned a lot since then. So much so that it sparked an entire national awareness campaign around the importance of sun protection. National Sunscreen Day, celebrated every year on May 27, raises awareness of the skin and health dangers of too much sun exposure without proper protection. But how does the sun affect your teeth? Let’s check in with your dentist in Reno

Sun is Good For Teeth

Getting outside in the sun can be good for both oral health and overall health because it gives our bodies vitamin D. While we can fuel the body’s need for vitamin D through certain foods such as fatty fish, eggs, and dairy, the sun is one of the best ways to get a healthy dose of this essential vitamin. Vitamin D helps the body absorb calcium, which is necessary to build strong teeth and bones. Additionally, vitamin D can help protect against: 

However, many Americans don’t get enough vitamin D to support the body’s needs. In fact, around 42% of U.S. adults are vitamin D deficienct. This is one reason why your dentist in Reno supports getting outside and soaking up the sun, with protection, of course. 

When is the Sun Bad for Oral Health? 

Despite the fact that sun exposure can benefit oral health, there are some things you should keep in mind. While it’s not likely for the teeth to be directly damaged from the sun (although it is still possible), other areas of oral health can easily be harmed by too much sun or as a side effect of being in the sun for too long. 

We always encourage our patients to apply sunscreen to their skin before going outside, but many often forget about their lips. However, the lips can easily burn. Similarly to other areas of the body, too much sun damage on the lips can increase the risk of developing lip or oral cancer. So before you head outdoors, take the advice of your dentist in Reno and apply a lip balm with an SPF of 15 or higher, and reapply often. 

Staying hydrated at any time is important to both oral and overall health. But it’s even more crucial when we’re outside in the sun and heat. The sun can soak up any sweat quickly and leave our bodies craving water. Not replenishing this liquid can cause dehydration, which can be a really serious health problem. It can also be a serious problem for oral health. Dehydration can cause dry mouth, an uncomfortable condition that leaves us feeling constantly thirsty. Dry mouth can also increase the risk of bad breath, tooth decay, and gum disease. 

As the weather is warming up and we find ourselves spending more time outside, and more time in the sun, take the recommended precautions. Use sunscreen, even when it’s not super sunny, as well as an SPF lip balm, and drink plenty of water throughout the day to help stay hydrated.

Could Allergies Make My Teeth Sore? 

Spring has officially sprung, and there’s a lot to be thankful for. From the blooming flowers to the smell of fresh-cut grass, spring is the season of new beginnings. But it’s also the season of allergies, which means itchy eyes and stuffy noses. While spring can be a happy time, for allergy sufferers, it can be annoying. Plus, allergies can also cause problems for your oral health and require a visit to your dentist in Reno

Tooth Pain

Typically any sign of tooth pain should be a warning sign that it’s time to schedule a dental appointment. But during allergy season, it is possible that an allergy flare-up could cause tooth pain. How is this true? Well, thanks to the congestion that often goes hand in hand with allergies, the maxillary sinuses are full of pressure. This is what causes that stuffed-up, sometimes painful, feeling in the nose and areas of the face, including the molars. The roots and nerves of our back molars are located close to the maxillary sinuses, so when the sinuses are inflamed with too much pressure, we may be able to feel the result in our teeth. Either way, it’s always best to see your dentist in Reno if you’re experiencing any tooth pain. 

The Problem with Stuffy Noses 

In addition to tooth pain, there could be other unwanted oral side effects of allergies. Let’s start with one of the telltale signs of allergies – a stuffy nose. Our noses get stuffed up when our bodies produce too much mucus. Mucus is normal and necessary, but too much of it can block the nasal airways and make it difficult to breathe through the nose. Since we need oxygen, our bodies will automatically switch to breathing out of the mouth. Now, this may seem like no big deal, but your dentist in Reno knows just how much this can affect your oral health. 

We all need to breathe, so if your nose is stuffed up and you need to breathe out of your mouth, that’s ok. The problem with mouth breathing is when it’s done over a long period of time. Introducing the amount of air into the mouth during mouth breathing will quickly dry out salivary glands and make your mouth feel uncomfortably dry. A healthy mouth will produce saliva to rinse away bacteria and neutralize acids. Without it, cavities, bad breath, and even gum disease can thrive. 

How to Treat Your Allergies

We understand the need to get relief during allergy season to stop the stuffiness, itchiness, and potential tooth pain. It may take some trial and error to find the best regime for you. Keep in mind, some allergy medications can also cause dry mouth. If you find a medicine that works for you but your mouth feels dry, your dentist in Reno has some tips.

Despite any allergy side effects that you may be feeling, we hope that you’re able to get outside and enjoy the beauty (and hopefully weather) that spring has to offer.