Our Preventative Dentistry Services
Preventive Therapy Visits
At The Gorman Center for Fine Dentistry, you can feel confident knowing your smile will not only look fabulous, but will be in the best health possible. By providing the latest diagnostic techniques and technologies available, our comfortable methods ensure your smile looks good, feels good, and lasts a long time.
In our office, every preventive visit is thorough, comprehensive, individualized and comfortable. Dr. Steve Gorman is an AACD accredited dentist with a highly-trained preventive therapy team. We implement the latest in dental techniques and information, including the growing understanding of the body/mouth connection. Our state-of-the-art office is designed to make you feel at ease, featuring a warm, relaxing setting, and wonderful patient amenities. During your visit, we focus on your individual needs and desires to help you keep and maintain a healthy mouth.
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Sealants are an excellent way to protect the chewing surfaces of your back teeth from decay. These surfaces have deep pits and fissures where bacteria is easily trapped, which can lead to decay. Sealants, a thin plastic coating bonded to the chewing surface of your tooth, along with preventive dentistry, will help to prevent expensive problems down the road. Sealant placement takes just a few minutes, anesthesia isn’t necessary, and your tooth looks and feels just as it always had. Our sealants are guaranteed for five years provided you come in for regular care; with this commitment both you and your teeth are winners.
For those of you concerned about BPA exposure from plastic, we are pleased to inform you that our sealants do not contain BPA. Learn more about BPA exposure here.
Tooth Decay: The Cause
- Dental decay (cavities) results from bacteria.
- Plaque (bacteria) and sugary/starchy foods work together to form an acid that breaks down tooth structure, thus promoting decay.
What about Soda Pop?
- Soda pop and sports drinks have extreme amounts of sugar and low pH (high acidity) which in combination with plaque can lead to rapid decay.
- Pop is even more damaging when sipped over the course of several hours or when multiple servings are consumed throughout the day (3-12 daily), because each high sugar exposure starts a new acid attack on the teeth.
- Don’t be fooled by diet drinks; they don’t contain sugar, but their acid/low pH attacks the teeth immediately.
Everyone Benefits From Fluoride Treatments
- Tooth decay isn’t just a children’s health problem; the causes of tooth decay are the same for everyone, regardless of age. In fact, the elderly are often prone to decay.
- Fluoride helps prevent first-time tooth decay and secondary decay around existing restorations.
- Fluoride reduces tooth sensitivity and strengthens exposed root surfaces.
Xylitol is a plant-based sweetener that inhibits decay-promoting acid formation. Xylitol is available in gum, mints, toothpaste and granular form for cooking. Using Xylitol raises oral pH, thereby reducing the time teeth are exposed to damaging acids, as well as starving harmful bacteria of their food source. We’d love to help you discover your favorite brand of Xylitol. Xylitol aids in treating periodontal disease by reducing the bacteria population in the mouth. Long-term use of Xylitol makes the oral environment less acidic, thereby suppressing the most harmful strains of oral bacteria that cause gum disease.
Oral Systemic Health
The oral systemic connection has recently become a more familiar concept for many. Dr. Steve Gorman and his team are founding members of the American Academy of Oral Systemic Health (AAOSH). AAOSH’s mission statement says it best: AAOSH is a network of dedicated health care leaders working to change professional and public behaviors and address the importance of oral health as it relates to whole body health.
Your mouth is the gateway to the entire body.
Conditions such as bleeding gums and periodontal disease have been shown to be risk factors for health problems, including diabetes, heart disease, stroke, some cancers, low birth-weight babies and can contribute to bronchitis, pneumonia, and emphysema. At The Gorman Center for Fine Dentistry, our goal is to treat your smile and protect your overall health through expert care so you can live a long and comfortable life.
An unhealthy mouth or bleeding gums can increase your risk for the following health concerns, and more so if there is a family history of:
Cardiovascular disease, including heart attack and strokes
Premature or low birth-weight babies
Certain types of cancer
At The Gorman Center for Fine Dentistry, we take extra steps to ensure your smile stays as healthy as possible, and in turn, keep your whole body in top notch condition. Our comprehensive approach to care includes lasers, oral DNA bacterial and personal DNA testing, Perio Protect and recommendations for Xylitol usage, all aimed to protect your overall health, and which aren’t always available through many dentists in Minneapolis.
"Your staff continues to monitor and improve my oral care. I am grateful for such an educated and caring team."
Dr. Steve Gorman is looked to as a leader in both cosmetic dentistry and periodontal care, which are closely related.
Painless Laser Therapy
It has been known for some time that a healthy mouth reduces inflammation that can affect other parts of the body. In order to have a beautiful and well-functioning smile, we must have a healthy foundation of bone and gum tissue. Dr. Gorman is well known for his skill and knowledge, but what clients remember most is his careful listening and complete approach to care.
Can we get you back on track?
We can get you back on track if:
- Your gums bleed when you brush, floss, or have your teeth cleaned.
- You or others notice you have bad breath.
- Your gum tissue is receding (pulling back from your teeth) or your teeth appear longer.
- Your gum tissue is tender or swollen.
- Your bite has changed because your teeth have moved or shifted.
Periodontal Laser Therapy
The use of lasers is among the most exciting advancements in dentistry today. Laser therapy is safe, painless, and stimulates healing. Much like washing the dirt out of an open wound, lasers assist in killing bacteria and disinfecting the deep pocket around the tooth, reducing bleeding and inflammation. Our goal is to eliminate the transmission of oral bacteria into the bloodstream, improving overall health. Periodontal disease, commonly called gum disease, is an inflammatory condition which is an additional risk factor for heart and pulmonary disease, stroke, diabetes, low birth-weight babies, some cancers and can contribute to bronchitis, pneumonia, and emphysema. One of our highly trained hygienists will be able to evaluate your particular situation.
Other Benefits of Lasers
Dr. Gorman offers his clients the best in comprehensive dentistry. Lasers allow Dr. Gorman to perform aesthetic tissue recontouring when needed as part of your smile design, saving you a drive across town to a specialist.
Lasers can Speed the Healing of your Canker or Cold Sore
If you suffer from unsightly cold and canker sores, in a matter of minutes we can eliminate the pain and shorten healing time. Although the best time for treatment is when you feel the initial tingling of a cold sore or canker sore, you will benefit at any stage in the healing process. Each treatment reduces the likelihood of recurrence!
DNA & Bacterial Testing
There has been an exciting breakthrough in the treatment of periodontal disease, one that you won’t find everywhere. Our oral DNA testing allows us to determine your genetic and bacterial susceptibility to gum infections aiding us in determining the best treatment for you. Some people are simply more genetically prone to periodontal disease.
Perio Protect is an exciting new product used at home to speed healing and is often used in combination with periodontal laser therapy. Wearing a special tray made to fit comfortably over your teeth, filled with a hydrogen peroxide solution and an antibiotic, has been proven to help build bone back after gum disease.
A beautiful smile portrays confidence. But a healthy mouth ensures the longevity of your smile and your whole body as well. For some people, periodontal disease goes untreated — because they may not know they have it, don’t realize the impact on total body health, don’t think it’s important, or because they are nervous about traditional periodontal treatments. Thankfully, Dr. Gorman offers a cutting-edge solution in periodontal laser therapy in Minneapolis, offering treatments that are more effective and comfortable than ever before.
Our comprehensive periodontal therapies include:
- DNA testing to assess your genetic susceptibility
- Bacterial testing to determine the exact type and concentration of periodontal bacteria
- Pharmaceutical-grade nutrients to support the periodontal tissues and healing
- Dental laser therapy to kill bacteria and eliminate diseased tissue
- Perio Protect – Locally delivered antimicrobial agents to target bacteria and maintain wellness
- Collaboration with your physician regarding total body health
Dr. Gorman has developed a system that addresses the link between gum disease and the total body, taking into consideration that periodontal disease isn’t just a condition of the mouth but a condition of personal immunity and how your body reacts to the levels and types of bacteria in the mouth.
Oral Cancer Screenings
Why do they matter?
We use Identafi® for oral cancer screenings. Identafi, an easy two minute screening exam performed at your regular preventive visit, helps detect pre–cancerous oral tissues. If an area of concern is noted, we will refer you to a specialist for further evaluation. When precancerous or cancerous oral lesions are found early, treatment is easier, less invasive and 80-90% successful.
Over the past 30 years, the incidence of new cases and deaths from oral cancers has declined. However, the number of new cases of oral cancer, particularly among young adults 18-40, caused by certain types of human papillomavirus (HPV) infection has increased. HPV 16 causes 95% of cervical cancers in women and 90% of HPV related oral cancers. Approximately 20-30% of oral cancers originate from HPV, and the tendency of HPV in the mouth is estimated to be 18-25%. HPV is often passed from one person to another during sexual activity.
What is HPV?
Human papillomavirus (also called HPV) is a type of virus that can cause abnormal tissue growth (for example, warts) and other changes to cells. Infection for a long time with certain types of human papillomavirus can cause cervical cancer. Human papillomavirus may also play a role in some other types of cancer, such as anal, vaginal, vulvar, penile, oropharyngeal, and squamous cell skin cancers.
Signs of Oral Cancer
During your oral cancer screening, Dr. Steve Gorman will examine your entire mouth in search for flat, painless, white, gray, or red spots and sores.
Signs of oral cancer include:
- Sores that bleed easily or don’t heal
- Any color changes of soft-tissue in the mouth
- Lumps, thickened tissue, crusty or rough spots
- Pain, tenderness or numbness anywhere in the mouth or lips
We offer an additional screening test, with an oral rinse, to determine if HPV is present in your mouth and therefore a potential oral cancer risk. If a high-risk strain of HPV is found, more frequent oral cancer screenings will be recommended. The presence of HPV through time is known to multiply risk. However, most people positive for HPV do not develop cancer.
Oral cancer screening is an important reason to remember to schedule regular preventive visits at The Gorman Center for Fine Dentistry. If you notice unusual changes in your mouth between visits, don’t hesitate to give our office a call for an evaluation.