So I know that this has very little to do with land or houses but this is my blog after all and I am going to post a little about what has happened to my gums.
Check out what my gums looked like before I did any work on them:
When I turned 26 I started to notice that my gums were receding a little behind my bonded retainer. I had this bonded retainer installed after my braces were taken off and it has been there for over 10 years without any problems. Now my tooth care was not that wonderful when I had my braces I will admit. I did not floss for almost 2 years and I only brushed my teeth at night. Once my braces were taken off I started the habit of brushing twice a day and I have only missed 2 days of flossing in over three years. So I would say that my cleaning habits are good. I went to have my teeth cleaned and they told me that I had some recession going on and I should keep up what I was doing except brush softer and in little circles. So that is what I did.
I forgot about going to the dentist and it was over a year before I went back. The told me that my gum recession had gotten worse and I needed to have a gum graft. If I did not get one I would lose my tooth eventually. I had not ever heard of gum grafting before so I said ok and the dentist made an appointment for a periodontist so I could have my gums cut up and moved around my mouth. I was to pay a $200 fee just to talk to the guy so he could say what he was going to do. I hate paying money to someone that I dont get anything from in return. And what is worse is that the surgery is anywhere from $300 a tooth to over $1000. Crazy. I dont have that kind of money.
The weekend passes and I had written an email to a chiropractor friend of mine saying that I could not help with office work for a bit because I was about to have this gum surgery. My friend tells me that they have low level laser treatments that can help me with my problem. Well now that is a much better option. The laser that they use is non invasive. It just shines on the spot you place it on and helps the area to heal faster.
I canceled my appointment at the periodontist and head over to the chiropractic office. We talk about my problem and then we do a scan that shows me what I have going on in the body. I have all kinds of stuff going on that i did not know about. I had felt that some of my problems areas were not as they should be and I was right on. My blood sugar is way off and my thyroid has some issues going on. They tell me that they can fix my tooth issues but unless I get my internal health better the tooth problem will just come right back. Sounds legit and I also just want to have overall health anyway.
I do a laser treatment and they send me on my way. I am a little sore for the next several hours and they say thats a good thing. Now before I left they told me that I should swish Coconut Oil every day to do something called “oil pulling”. I looked this up and it has been in existence since the Egyptians. Basically the oil just pulls bacteria out of the mouth and aids in healthy teeth and gums. So I started using coconut oil every night for 30 minuets.
After two laser treatments I noticed that my gums are less red and more pink. I think that this is a healthy look for them. They say that I need at least 6 treatments and possibly 8. After four days of using Coconut oil I have started placing 1/2 a tsp in my mouth at first and letting that sit for about 15min then I spit that out and do the same thing again. This seems to work better because its less oil and allows the first batch to spit out the bad bacteria.
Here is a picture after two lasers:
Now after 5 laser treatments my gums have started to look better. I have less to no inflammation and the gums around the teeth are starting to close the gap that they have had for over two years. I am signed up for 6 laser treatments but I have a feeling that I will be doing more like 8. Check out this picture of my teeth after the 5th laser treatment:
While I am at the Dr. I have to lay on a table and place the laser probe on my face. I sit there for an hour most of the time and play on the phone or I just relax. Here is a picture of the laser probe doing what it does:
I have finished my original laser treatments and have not seen a tremendous improvement in the recession of the gums but I have seen a major decrease in inflammation. I have been doing a little reading on what gum recession is and I have found a few things out. What most results said was that if you are having recession then you are brushing to hard and you need to floss more. This might be true for most people but with a little more reading I have found that there is more to it than just taking care of your teeth. Several doctors have said that the teeth and gums are the upper part of the gastrointestinal track and they are directly affected by what is happening in your gut. This makes since to me. The old saying “you are what you eat.” So I have been informed by my chiropractor and health coach that I need to reset my gut. Basically I have been eating very poorly for a long time and I have a bacteria called H Pylori in my gut that has gotten out of control and it is making my gut inflamed. Fix the gut and fix many problems.
So how do you reset the gut? Well I have to go on a health food diet for a month. Eating only real foods. Meat, Vegetables, and fruit. I will also be taking a strong probiotic and supplement to stabilize blood sugar. I dont like a lot of real foods because I have gotten the taste for processed foods like grains. I love that morning cereal. As I embark on this health food adventure I will let you know how it goes.
Well I started eating healthy on Nov 15. The first day was not that bad. I had plenty to eat because I had spent $50 on groceries. The second day was a little more of an issue. I am guessing that grains and scrambled eggs are very filling and I miss them first thing in the morning. Fruits, Vegetables, and meat are good and all but I have to eat all day to keep from feeling hungry. My guess is that when the Good Lord said “man shall not live on bread alone” he still wanted us to have some. 🙂 The supplements that I am taking are not a problem and so far I have not even noticed any change. I am going to start adding more foods to my diet on Dec 15. I sure hope that I can make it that long.
After two months I am almost done with the new diet. The first month I was only able to eat fruits vegetables and meat but in the second month I was allowed to eat rice and beans. That opened up a whole new world of possibilities. I can put away some beans. I feel much better and I think that my gut has made some nice changes in health. One sad thing is that I have changed over to non virgin coconut oil and I realized that it does not have the health benefits of the virgin. I am going to have to order it on the internet.
SO back to the gum recession that started this topic. I have finished my laser treatments and no real change has been made. I did not have to pay for them because there was no change in the recession. Now we are worried that the bonded retainer is the problem. It might be trapping bacteria that I cant get to with the toothbrush. I called my old orthodontist to ask him some questions but his office is closed for the next 2 weeks. After a month I call my old orthodontist again and get in touch with one of the assistance. Now she was very hateful and when I asked if it was possible that the bonded retainer was the issue she snapped back at me that there was no way the retainer was the problem and that I was a stupid idiot for even asking. (ok she did not say I was an idiot but she was hatful)
Lets recap what has happened so far: I had laser treatments and that brought down my gum inflammation a lot but made no changes in recession. I made some major changes in diet and that has been amazing for my health and wellbeing. It has also informed me about Monsanto and the evils of GMO foods. But my gum recession has not changed.
After six months I return to the dentist for my check up and he looks at my gums and tells me again that I need to talk to a periodontist. I cave from my “fix this natural” mentality. I asked my dentist if there was a cheaper periodontist that was also good. He says that there is a guy in Boone NC that is good. So I take his advice and go see a man named Dr. Forbes. What a nice man! I could not be more thankful that I went to see him.
Well I get to Dr. Forbes office and sign in. I wait about 10min and they take me back to see the Dr. We sit down and he starts taking pictures of my mouth and showing me what the problems are. so here we go:
This picture is the underside of my tongue. The Dr. says that the frenulum is to long and it is pulling down on my gums every time I open my mouth and it is causing the recession on the inside portions of my mouth. To fix this he only has to cut it and stitch it back together again. I was alright with this little talk. and thought that I would be in and out of this place in no time at all. I knew that most babies have these clipped when they are new borns. I could take the pain that a new born takes. haha
But wait theres more. Next the Dr. starts looking at the front of the teeth. He says that he looks for a specific sign to know if I will need a gum graft. In the next picture you are looking at the front of my lower teeth. See the place that the teeth meet the gums? Well that place is supposed to be much whiter and less red. The Dr. explains to me that as bacteria build up in the gums they eat away at the gum tissue as well as the bone underneath. I will have to have a graft. . .
Surgery time. I schedule a time that i can meet with the doctor for my surgery. He says that the procedure is not going to be too bad and that I would not have to have a driver if I dont want one. My girlfriend says that she wants to go so she can drive. I get into the room and a nurse gives me a numbing cream on the spots that I am to have cut. Then the Dr. Comes in and gives me a few shots in the same places. He pokes around and asks if I can feel what he is doing. I say that I cant. They lean me back in the chair and give a talk about how if at any point I need a break then just give the signal. He starts first with the place below my front two teeth. I can feel the pressure of him pressing and slicing the gums open. Then I start to taste the blood. Its rather odd to see what is going on and taste it but not feel it. This part of the surgery only takes a couple seconds. Next the Dr. starts cutting in the back of my mouth at the donor site. This one was the most “AAHHH” not because it had pain but because it was so hard for him to cut. He did tell me that this spot was tough but that was a good thing because it is a strong place to get skin. after he had cut out the top of the mouth he then started sewing it onto the front of the teeth. It seemed to take a while for him to get this part done. Really these parts were not that bad. After a few minuets he was done with the graft. Then it was time for the frenulum. This was not bad either. I just had to keep the tongue up for about 15min. Here are some graphic pictures of what was done.
Below Front Teeth Donor Site Tongue Frenulum
Recovery: When all the cutting was done the Donor site was superglued closed so that I would not open it when I talked or breathed. I was asked to keep my mouth closed for a few days other than opening enough to eat and clean the teeth. The other two spots had some stitches that would dissolve over a couple days. For the first couple hours there was no pain. I was given a couple coupons for some free ice cream but since I had just started the new diet I was not going to eat ice cream. But my girlfriend told me of some coconut based ice cream that I could have. we drove to the store and I had some of that good stuff. Eating cold foods is the best after the surgery because it shrinks the blood vessels and keeps the pain down. For the most part I healed fast. It was a pain to clean the teeth but you have to do it. The food that you can eat for a couple days needs to be in small chunks so that you can eat them without chewing. This was the worst part of the whole deal! See what I ate for days:
Check out these pictures of the one month post recovery:
After a long time of experimenting I have learned a lot and have for the most part solved my problems. My health has improved so much after changing my diet. I find that I am searching for ways to eat even more healthy. My teeth are a nice pink color and there has been zero recession since the surgery. If you have the right surgeon then this procedure is a piece of cake.