Be Like Shaq and Give Sleep Apnea the Attack

May 23, 2011

Marty Ellis /

Even celebrities and athletes aren’t perfect. People in the spotlight get sick, go grocery shopping, and walk their dogs just like us. Some even snore, and Shaquille O’Neal is one of those snorers.

If you, like Shaq, snore, or if you sleep with someone who does, you know how annoying and frustrating the habit can be. Whether you’re the one fighting to keep your airways open or fighting to get some shut-eye, snoring can be a disturbance. Then, it can turn into a life-threatening problem.

Snoring is one of the tell tale signs of sleep apnea, a condition in which breathing while sleeping becomes difficult because your airways are slightly or severely obstructed. Often, breathing can stop completely, sometimes for as many as 10 seconds. In addition to not breathing several times throughout the night, you’re not getting the sleep you need because your body wakes you every time your breathing stops.

Attack sleep apnea and reclaim your life and a good night’s sleep. That’s what Shaq did! After years of snoring and freight-train-turned-silent nights, the basketball star decided to take part in a sleep apnea study sponsored by Harvard University. Hear about Shaq’s experience here.

I’m Dr. James Stewart, and I urge you to make an appointment at my Livonia, Michigan, dental office at (734) 425-4400 to find out more about sleep studies and sleep apnea treatments. I’ve helped countless patients stop snoring, sleep comfortably, and achieve a higher quality of life. I want to help you do the same.


Sleep Impacts Oral Health

April 11, 2011

Lack of sleep worsens periodontal disease. During a study conducted in Japan, 219 factory workers were evaluated to determine the affect their lifestyles had on their oral health.  Researchers examined lifestyle habits, including: exercise, alcohol consumption, tobacco use, amount of sleep, nutrition, stress, number of hours worked, and eating breakfast. The study revealed the number-one factor impacting periodontal disease was smoking. However, the number two factor was sleep.

Participants who obtained seven to eight hours of sleep a night exhibited a slower progression of periodontal disease than those who received six or fewer hours a night. Researchers concluded that a shortage of sleep can impair the body’s immune system, which can make periodontal disease progress more rapidly. Read the rest of this entry »

Oral Cancer Awareness Month

April 7, 2011

Oral cancer affects approximately 36,500 people yearly, which accounts for about two percent of all cancer diagnoses in the United States. According to recent statistics, of these 36,500 people, approximately 7,900 will die from the disease. The death rate is high due to late detection of the disease. Oral cancer generally metastasizes to the cervical lymph nodes in the neck.
This form of cancer occurs mostly on the tongue or lips, however, the lining of cheeks, gum tissue, and palate can also host cancerous lesions. Squamous cell carcinomas are the most common form of oral cancer.
Tobacco, alcohol, sun, and Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) are common risk factors of oral cancer. Tobacco accounts for most cases of oral cancer. People who heavily use tobacco products for numerous years are at increased oral cancer.  Men are more likely then woman to develop oral cancer, and the risk increases after the age of 40. Read the rest of this entry »

Sleep Apnea Dangers for Seniors

April 4, 2011

Sleep apnea and excessive daytime sleepiness not only lead to foggy days, but increase the risk of death for people 65 years and older. A recent study conducted at the University of Pennsylvania Health System showed the combination of the two disorders significantly increased the risk.

The study conducted from 1993 through 1998 revealed that suffers of both sleep apnea and excessive daytime sleepiness were two times more likely to die than those who complained of just one of these disorders.

Half of the participants experienced high levels of excessive daytime sleepiness. The problem, believed to be a normal effect of aging, creates a greater chance of falling, cognitive deficits, and functional impairments. Read the rest of this entry »

Livonia Dentist Recommends Moderating Acidic Foods

March 24, 2011

Maintaining a proper pH level in your mouth can prevent tooth decay and gum disease. Continual consumption of foods with low pH levels can also lead to irreversible dental erosion. I’m Dr. James Stewart, a dentist in Livonia, MI., and I want to discuss why acidic foods should be consumed in moderation.

Potential of hydrogen (pH) is the standard measure of acidity, and it is measured on a scale of 0-14. A low pH means the solution contains more acid.  High pH means the solution rates alkaline. When a solution tests at a 7, it is considered neutral.

Acidic foods cause tooth enamel to weaken for a short period of time. Saliva, an alkaline, normally restores the pH balance in your mouth. Enamel generally rehardens after 30 minutes. However, excessive consumption of acidic foods or drinks causes the pH balance to remain too low for the mouth to heal itself. Thus, you increase your risk of tooth decay. Read the rest of this entry »

Strokes Linked to Tooth Loss

March 21, 2011

We have discussed numerous times the importance of caring for your teeth. The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends brushing two times a day, flossing daily, and attending six-month cleanings and checkups to help you maintain your teeth for a lifetime.

A new study links having 24 or fewer natural teeth to increased risks of strokes. Research, conducted at Japan’s Hiroshima University, found that underlying gum disease causing loss of teeth is a proponent of stroke patients.

Analysts examined 358 stroke patients and found the ones in their 50s and 60s had significantly fewer teeth than the control group. Patients with 24 teeth or fewer teeth had a 57 percent increased risk of stroke, compared to participants with 25 or more teeth. Reports suggest that tooth loss may be related to both hemorrhagic and ischemic strokes.

I’m Dr. James Stewart, a dentist in Livonia, MI. I can’t stress enough the importance of proper care for your teeth. Gum disease, a preventable condition, is the number one cause of tooth loss. If you are in need of your six month dental appointment, please call my Livonia dentist office at (743)425-4400 to schedule an appointment.  I care for patients in and around Livonia, Dearborn, and Farmington Hills, Michigan.

Men Visit Dentist Prior to Job Searching

March 18, 2011

A recent online poll indicated that men don’t visit the dentist regularly. Nearly 45 percent of the men polled stated they don’t see the need; 30 percent said they are embarrassed or afraid; 18 percent said they don’t have time; and 5 percent don’t even have a regular dentist.

However, with the high number of men changing or looking for jobs, these statistics are changing. More men are receiving cosmetic dentistry to improve their appearance. They request teeth whitening, veneers, and bonding.  Kelton Research conducted a study that found 58% of the participants in the study were more likely to be hired and 53% more likely to receive a higher salary post teeth whitening. Read the rest of this entry »