Mythbusters: LANAP Procedure Edition | Huntington Beach Dentist

When you develop gum disease, there are a few ways to treat the issue. In the past, there was traditional gum surgery. Not only is it painful, but the recovery time is also extensive. Nowadays, there is a new option that not only removes the use of a scalpel, but also has a quick recovery period. This is the LANAP procedure.

Because it is a new procedure, it comes with lots of myths behind it. Today we disprove the more common ones:

Myth #1: Any dentist can do it.

Only trained, qualified periodontists and dentists can use LANAP lasers on patients. They undergo a year-long, intensive training process that happens at the Institute for Advanced Laser Dentistry.

Myth #2: LANAP is expensive.

LANAP costs roughly the same as traditional gum surgery. But if you consider recovery time, LANAP may make for a more financially reasonable option.

Myth #3: Insurance doesn’t cover LANAP procedures.

Most insurance carriers will cover LANAP. Contact your insurance provider and discuss your coverage.

Myth #4: Any laser can be used for LANAP.

No, LANAP uses a very specific laser, the PerioLase MVP-7, to treat gum disease. This laser only targets the diseased gums, destroying the bad bacteria while preserving healthy tissue.

Myth #5: LANAP is dangerous.

Keep in mind that there are inherent risks in any medical procedure Your healthcare professional will discuss those with you before beginning the surgery so that you’re fully informed. However, LANAP uses an FDA-approved, safe laser that only interacts with harmful bacteria. There’s no risk of radiation or interaction with other medications as well. You may have to take x-rays before the procedure, but the risk is minimal there as well.

Common Questions Asked About Pinhole Gum Surgery | Huntington Beach Dentist

It’s a fact of life most of us try not to think about but it happens to the best of us – our gums begin to recede. In fact, this is where the saying ‘long in the tooth’ comes from. And while it is a natural occurrence as we age, it is important that you keep up your dental routines when this happens, as bacteria penetrate your gums and cause further dental issues. Prior to the Pinhole® Surgical Technique, gum recession was remedied through a painful gum grafting procedure. Nowadays, gum recession can be remedied without having to make a single cut, not only reducing pain and discomfort grafting surgery can do, but also recovery time. Still not sure? Let’s take a look at some of the more common questions:

What is the Chao Pinhole® Surgical Technique? The Chao Pinhole® Surgical Technique is a way to repair gum shrinkage through a pinhole in the gum without having to cut.

How long does the standard gum grafting procedure take? To delicately cut and remove the graft tissue and attach it with sutures takes about an hour to an hour and a half for just one or two teeth, with a recovery period of two or three weeks.

What’s the key to the PST procedure? The key to The Pinhole® Surgical Technique is a pinhole that is made by a needle, deleting the need for a scalpel or cutting. The tissue down is shifted with very little trauma, removing any open wounds to deal with.

Will I have to do this often? This is expected to be permanent and lasts long as any other procedure. If everything is healthy and there is no over-brushing, it can last years.

If you would like to find out more about Pinhole® Surgical Technique , contact Dr. Gamarnik at 714-842-5626 to schedule a consultation or visit for additional information.

Dr. Rudy Gamarnik proudly serves Huntington Beach and all surrounding areas.

Do You Experience Tooth Sensitivity? | Huntington Beach Dentist

Here we are – the end of summer. It’s Labor Day weekend. The final hours of summer are beginning to dwindle away. The fun outdoor activities and events with friends and family have been fun all season long, but it’s time to pack up and get ready for the next season – autumn.

We know that summer foods are sweet, fresh and cold. As we get into the autumnal season, our diets begin to change to savory, cozy and warm. And while this doesn’t seem to be an issue, for some it can cause some major tooth sensitivity to occur. You know, those zings you feel when you eat something too cold or hot. It is something that affects more people than you think.

There are many reasons one could have teeth sensitivity. It’s generally caused naturally as we age. Our gums begin to pull back, making your teeth sensitive. Tooth decay, gingivitis, and plaque buildup are various dental issues that make consuming hot or cold foods difficult. Damaged teeth or worn teeth due to teeth grinding are also ways teeth can become sensitive.

The sooner you fix these issues, the less likely there will be more damage. If you grind your teeth, use a mouth guard while you sleep to keep your teeth from wearing down. If you use teeth whitening products often, the chemicals may be the culprit. Acidic foods, like citrus fruit, can also contribute to wear and tear on tooth enamel. The key is to keep everything in moderation.

If you feel you have sensitive teeth, consult a dental professional. They will have helpful tips to keep your oral health intact so you can enjoy the warm and tasty treats the upcoming season has to offer.

If you would like to find out more about tooth sensitivity, contact Dr. Gamarnik at 714-842-5626 to schedule a consultation or visit for additional information.

Dr. Rudy Gamarnik proudly serves Huntington Beach and all surrounding areas.

Why Is My Jaw Clicking? | Huntington Beach Dentist

Have you noticed that your jaw clicks when you chew? Jaw clicking, popping, soreness or pain when you speak, chew or laugh are often symptoms of a problem with the joint that connects your lower jaw to your skull. This joint, known as the temporomandibular joint (TMJ), not only involves the dental complexities of the patient’s mouth, but it also includes the muscles of the human neck and back, and organs of the human head. The joint itself contains a thin cushion known as an articular disc, which helps align the lower mandible within the joint socket. When this alignment is thrown off, clicking and popping can result.

If the articular disc moves slightly, you may not notice any long-lasting symptoms. You may hear popping or clicking because the joint is very near the ear, but in many cases the disc will adjust itself and symptoms will disappear. In other cases, the disc will become displaced, and symptoms will persist. In severe cases, you may not even be able to open your mouth completely. In those cases, you need to make an appointment to see a TMJ specialist for treatment. Other disorders of the TMJ joint are possible, as well. If the mandible becomes dislocated, you won’t be able to fully close your jaw.

TMJ disorders are varied and complex, ranging from rare popping to frequent cracking. They may not be a major problem, but a specialist should investigate recurring symptoms that involve pain, fatigue, or mouths that fail to operate properly. If you experience these types of symptoms, especially unusual pain in the jaw or face, contact a TMJ specialist for an evaluation.

If you would like to find out more about jaw issues, contact Dr. Gamarnik at 714-842-5626 to schedule a consultation or visit for additional information.

Dr. Rudy Gamarnik proudly serves Huntington Beach and all surrounding areas.

The Key to Dental Hygiene? A Clean Toothbrush | Huntington Beach Dentist

It is important to know that while your dentist is the professional at keeping your teeth clean and healthy, they can’t control what happens once you leave the dentist’s office. Most of the work depends on you and your daily habits. The more you work to prevent bacteria from settling in your mouth and causing damage, the better off your dental checkups are every year. But even more important than good dental habits is using the proper tools we need to keep our mouths the healthiest. 

The best way to limit the bacteria in your mouth is to brush your teeth. And what do we use to do this? A toothbrush. But brushing your teeth is not enough. The best way to keep those cavity creeps away is to replace your toothbrush on a regular basis. In fact, the American Dental Association, or ADA, recommends throwing out your toothbrush every three to four months. If the bristles become frayed, you’re sick, or you have a weak immune system, throw it out even more often. If you use an electric toothbrush, throw out the head as often as you’d discard a disposable toothbrush.

Every time you’re tempted to skip brushing and flossing your teeth, remember how many bacteria lurk in your mouth – and that they cause gum disease, and decay, and bad breath. Make sure you’re brushing and flossing as often as possible to eliminate some of those bacteria. Rinsing your mouth with an antibacterial mouthwash before or after brushing can also help reduce plaque-causing bacteria that can lead to early forms of gum disease.

If you would like to find out more about toothbrushes, contact Dr. Gamarnik at 714-842-5626 to schedule a consultation or visit for additional information.

Dr. Rudy Gamarnik proudly serves Huntington Beach and all surrounding areas.

Garlic: A Blessing or a Curse? | Huntington Beach Dentist

Let’s face it – food wouldn’t be the same without garlic. It is so beloved that there is an entire festival dedicated to garlic in Gilroy, CA every summer. But with every good comes a bad and garlic is no different. The more we enjoy it, the more it is invading our mouths, leaving us with some of the stinkiest breath around. No chance of getting that kiss at the end of the date. But man – is it not a tasty ingredient that blesses any meal. Yum!

But did you know that garlic is actually helping our smiles? It’s true! It may be hard to believe this pungent ingredient has a positive to our health but it’s true – garlic is one of the most multi-faceted foods we have. And since National Garlic Day is in April, let’s take a moment to celebrate our smile’s favorite smelly friend…

Gum disease prevention. Garlic has thiosulfinate, a bacteria-reducing compound that specializes in reducing the production of plaque, the first stage of gum disease.

Promotes dental hygiene. We all know that garlic is guaranteed to give us some of the worst breath, so garlic is actually helping us maintain healthy dental practices as we are more prone to brush after eating garlic.

Get a good night’s sleep. Did you know garlic helps you sleep? Those that suffer from sleep apnea can benefit from its anti-inflammatory properties that can also help open up your airways and reduce enlarged tonsils.

Toothache relief. If a toothache or headache has occurred, munching on a clove of garlic can help relieve some of your pain naturally.

If you would like to find out more about the effects of garlic, contact Dr. Gamarnik at 714-842-5626 to schedule a consultation or visit for additional information.

Dr. Rudy Gamarnik proudly serves Huntington Beach and all surrounding areas.

Straightening Your Smile in Secret | Huntington Beach Dentist

If you have a crooked smile, there are lots of options you can try. But a newer option that has been available for a while now is invisible braces. There are a couple of options on the market, but in our office, we use the Invisalign system. Braces may be something you need, but if you’re an adult, it can be something that can cause you to feel self-conscious with traditional braces.

The Invisalign system straightens your teeth using clear plastic trays known as aligners to move teeth to their ideal places. The aligners are custom-made according to the shape of your teeth, similar to a traditional retainer. The trays or aligners are different in that they’re not perfect molds of the teeth to prevent them from moving but differ slightly from your teeth, so they move and shift to fit the tray.

When you have traditional braces, you will need to make a few lifestyle changes. Things like eating, dental hygiene and speaking will take a but of adjusting as you get used to them. If you don’t look after them, you will pop wires and brackets, which means an additional visit to the orthodontist. With Invisalign patients can remove them whenever necessary. Though, it is recommended that patients remove the aligners when eating or drinking, as well as when they brush their teeth after every meal. The patient should also have to clean the aligners to prevent staining resulting from the exposure to the remaining food particles in the mouth.

But the main reason why you should consider this type of orthodontic treatment is the discretion, making it ideal for those who don’t want to anyone to know that they are improving their smile.

If you would like to find out more about Invisalign, contact Dr. Gamarnik at 714-842-5626 to schedule a consultation or visit for additional information.

Dr. Rudy Gamarnik proudly serves Huntington Beach and all surrounding areas.

What Is Geriatric Dentistry? | Huntington Beach Dentist

Aging is a process we all deal with in the later parts of our lives. And with that, there are loads of changes that take place as we get to a certain age. Our bodies are beginning to break down and we need more to keep ourselves healthy. One area in our lives that may be neglected as we age is our dental health. Unfortunately, our dental health should be more of a priority since it is our first line of defense against our overall health.

Geriatric dentistry is the delivery of oral care to older patients, many of whom require diagnosis, management, prevention and treatment of dental problems associated with age-related diseases. According to research, more than half of all dental patients over 60 are on medication or are medically compromised in some way, while also showing increased sensitivity to medication used in dentistry, necessitating a specialized type of care.

Potential drug interactions. Elder patients may take medications that make them more vulnerable to drug interactions, medication errors and drug reactions, requiring special precautions to protect the safety and well-being of older patients.

Compassion. Geriatric-focused dental professionals take great care to minimize noises and distractions during treatment. And since older patients with cognitive limitations are easily overwhelmed, geriatric-focused dental professionals are also careful to communicate using short, simple sentences that relax the patient and ease the treatment process.

Patience and consideration. When dealing with elder patients suffering from dementia or physical impairments, experienced dental professionals understand that patience may not be enough and may need to delay a procedure for a later time.

If you would like to find out more about improving geriatric dentistry , contact Dr. Gamarnik at 714-842-5626 to schedule a consultation or visit for additional information.

Dr. Rudy Gamarnik proudly serves Huntington Beach and all surrounding areas.

Explaining Root Canal Therapy | Huntington Beach Dentist

If the idea of getting a root canal scares you from seeing a dentist, you may want to rethink this position. Even though it is tough to deal with a toothache, some patients think it isn’t as bad as getting the procedure itself done. Unfortunately, if you let it go untreated, it will only get worse. And contrary to what you may believe, root canal therapy actually relieves pain, it does not cause pain. The pain comes from the infection in the root canal. The endodontic treatment removes the infection and leaves you feeling better after the procedure. The best part is you get to keep your natural tooth.

A root canal is a procedure that treats the inside of your tooth. If you have an untreated chip or cracked (or other trauma), it can expose the pulp which then can become inflamed and infected. Thus, the pulp inside of your tooth becomes damaged. Left untreated leads to the pain you’d feel with a toothache. This left further untreated can result in an abscess.

When your dentist performs a root canal, the damaged pulp is removed entirely from the inside of the tooth. After it is removed, your tooth will be cleaned and disinfected and sealed. Afterwards, the tooth is restored with a crown or a filling for protection.

But don’t be scared – modern root canal treatment is similar to having a routine filling and may be completed in one or two appointments depending on the condition of the tooth. The procedure isn’t as grim as it is made out to be. With proper care, most teeth that have had root canal treatment can last as long as other natural teeth and often for a lifetime.

If you would like to find out more about improving root canal therapy , contact Dr. Gamarnik at 714-842-5626 to schedule a consultation or visit for additional information.

Dr. Rudy Gamarnik proudly serves Huntington Beach and all surrounding areas.

Reasons to Resolve to Improve Your Dental Habits | Huntington Beach Dentist

Here we are again – on the brink of a new year. And while things may not be normalized in the world, we can have some type of control in our lives. And the new year is always the time we stop and reflect on what improvements we’d like to see in the new year. One area that is generally overlooked when considering resolutions is our dental routine. Dental health is important because it can influence other health issues. 

Did you know that the average person spends around 30 seconds brushing their teeth, compared to the recommended two minutes? Yes, the same amount of time you should be washing your hands is the same amount of time that you should be brushing your teeth. So, let’s start these new routines with a refresher course:

  • Brush twice a day for at least two minutes each session
  • Floss once a day before you sleep
  • Rinse with a fluoride mouthwash before you brush to loosen particles
  • Limit the daily snacks consumed, especially those full of sugar
  • Visiting the dentist every 3-6 months for regular checkups and professional cleaning

When brushing your teeth, make sure that every surface is brushed and cleaned as thoroughly as possible. Use short, gentle strokes with a soft-bristled toothbrush, paying extra attention to your gums, the back teeth and areas around dental work.

As for flossing, start with about 18 inches or so of floss, hold it between your thumbs and index fingers, then gently slide it in between the gaps of your teeth. Slowly move the floss back-and-forth to bring it away from your teeth without causing any harm. Keep up the good work!

If you would like to find out more about improving your dental health , contact Dr. Gamarnik at 714-842-5626 to schedule a consultation or visit for additional information.

Dr. Rudy Gamarnik proudly serves Huntington Beach and all surrounding areas.