Monthly Archives: May 2014

Over our past 25-years of dentistry in Houston, many of our patients have asked if there’s something we can do for a family members snoring. While snoring is not unusual, loud snoring – especially when there are stages of infrequent breathing patterns – may be a sign of sleep apnea and something that needs to be treated.

The Dangerous Health Risks of Sleep Apnea:

With sleep apnea, a person repeatedly stops breathing while they sleep, sometimes hundreds of times during the night. Left untreated, sleep apnea can lead to a number of serious health issues such as hypertension, stroke, diabetes, depression, heart problems, memory problems, weight gain, headaches, impotence an irregular heartbeat and of course heart attack.

Sleep Apnea

How do You Diagnose Sleep Apnea?

In the past, diagnosing sleep apnea required going to a sleep lab and staying overnight to have a polysomnography test performed. However, with today’s technology you can take the polysomnography test from the comfort of your own home with a Home Sleep Test (HST). The test monitors your muscle activity, heart rhythm, eye movements and brain activity during sleep. In addition to the convenience and comfort of an HST, the home sleep apnea tests are a fraction of the cost of traditional testing.
The polysomnograpy produces a reading called the Apnea Hypopnea Index (AHI), which is an index for the severity of sleep apnea. The AHI reading have a range as follows:

5-20 – Mild| 21-50 – Moderate | Above 50 – Severe

How do You Treat Sleep Apnea?

Fortunately, sleep apnea can be diagnosed and treated safely and effectively. As your dentist, we are in a position to diagnose and possibly help treat your condition. In mild to moderate cases of sleep apnea, we would fit you with a small mouth piece that you would wear while you sleep. If your sleep apnea is severe you may need another type of treatment, and with your permission, we can share your test results and our recommendations to your general physician or another qualified physician.

Be Aware of the Signs and Symptoms of Sleep Apnea:

• Snoring loud enough to disturb the sleep of others or yourself.
• Waking up with a sore or dry throat.
• On occasion waking up choking or gasping.
• Being tired during the day.
• Insomnia or frequently waking up during the night.

Don’t Let This Potentially Life Threatening Condition go Untreated!

If you or a loved one is struggling with sleep apnea, don’t put it off. The health risks are far too great, and today’s diagnosis and treatment options are simple, effective, and in many cases covered by insurance.
The Royal Dental team in Houston, Texas has been helping Houstonians smile straight, bright and healthy since 1992, and now we want to make sure you’re sleeping as healthy as possible! For more information on Sleep Apnea, get in touch with us by calling (713) 330-7700 or by filling out this contact form to schedule an appointment. We look forward to helping you out!

One of the classic symptoms of temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders is jaw pain, either in one or both sides. The pain itself could even radiate down to the neck and shoulders. Here at our Houston dental practice, our treatment approach to TMJ disorders is geared towards treating both acute and chronic symptoms of the condition.

Below is our quick guide to relief of jaw pain out of TMJ disorders:

  • Apply heat packs and cold compresses one at a time to the affected area. Apply heat first for at least 20 minutes and follow it with cold compresses for at least 5 to 10 minutes. Switch between the two until you achieve relief.
  • Relax your jaw by sticking to a soft food diet and avoiding unnecessary jaw movements.
  • Do these jaw exercises.
  • Wear your mouthguard if you have one.
  • Take painkillers as prescribed by your doctor.
  • Avoid stressing yourself too much as stress is known to be a trigger to jaw pain. Engage in exercises that employ deep breathing and progressive relaxation techniques.

Your Personalized TMJ Pain Relief Plan

Your Royal Dental USA team will assess your unique health needs and trouble areas to determine a measured approach to alleviating your symptoms of TMJ disorders such as jaw pain.

Get in touch with us by calling (713) 330-7700 or by filling out this contact form to schedule an appointment. We look forward to helping you out!

Royal Dental is always searching new and innovative dental solutions for you and your family, but sometimes the newest thing is not the best option. For example, the popularity of Invisalign has changed the way braces are viewed and more people are visiting orthodontists than ever before. As your dental provider we are proud and excited to offer Invisalign to our patients. Do you know what the differences between Invisalign and braces are? Are you a candidate? And if so, what is the best option for you?

We’ve put together this comparison of Invisalign vs braces to help you make an informed decision on which option is best for you:  

invisalign-braces

Cost Difference

According to the October Journal of Clinical Orthrodontics, Invisalign costs $5,300 for most adults. This approximately $500 more than the cost of traditional braces. As reported in the October Journal of Clinical Orthodontics the average cost for a set of traditional adult is braces is $4,800.

Effectiveness:

Invisalign is known to work best for mild to moderate cases and when it comes to horizontally misaligned teeth. Braces are effective for almost all cases of misaligned teeth. They work well on horizontally and vertically misaligned teeth.

Treatment Time:

The majority of Invisalign cases will take between six and 18 months. Some cases could take two to three year, and some could take as little as little as four to six months. Treatment time varies from case to case, but the average time is from one to two years. It’s important to follow the orthodontics instructions and to keep regular appointments to maintain a treatment timeline on schedule.

Appearance:

The strength behind Invisalign is the device is nearly invisible. It’s made of clear, plastic aligners that are custom made to fit over and cover your teeth. Braces are typically made with stainless steel brackets and wires that are connected to the outside of your teeth. They are highly visible.

Comfort:

A slight discomfort is usually reported in the beginning of each new stage of treatment. Each stage represents the aligners being adjusted to straighten the teeth. Typical braces are usually uncomfortable and will often prick or scratch the gums. Broken brackets and wires can require immediate treatment from your orthodontist.

Oral Hygiene:

Invisalign is easy to use and great for hygiene because the aligners in your mouth can be removed and cleaned as often as necessary. When you brush your teeth, you can brush your aligners as well. They can also be soaked and cleaned in a denture cleaner while you eat. Braces are more difficult to maintain because food and plaque can get trapped in the tiny spaces between braces and wires. Accumulation and gingival inflammation may occur so it’s best to brush your teeth and floss after each meal.

SUMMARY

When it comes to choosing between Invisalign or braces you should make an appointment with your dentist and ask which option would be the best for straightening your teeth. While Invisalign is typically considered a more comfortable and more expensive option, the most important factor in straightening your teeth is to follow the advice our your orthodontist and keep regularly scheduled appointments.

To learn more about braces and Invisalign options, or if you or a loved one needs orthodontic care, please call Royal Dental at (713) 330-7700 and schedule an appointment today!  

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