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Healthy Smile, Healthy Body

Did you know that your oral health can offer clues about your overall health? What dentists have known for years—that oral health not only offer insights into your general health, but affects it as well, is now being discussed around the world in mainstream media. What can you do to protect yourself? Progressive dentists like Dr. Vicki Borowski help their patients take control of their oral health through education, state-of-the-art preventive care and innovative treatment options. We had the opportunity to talk with Dr. Borowski about how problems in your mouth can be linked to a host of diseases and conditions including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, certain forms of cancer, premature birth and low birth weight babies, and even fetal death.

One of North Texas’ premier cosmetic and general dentists, Dr. Borowski provides comprehensive dental services using a wellness model approach that focuses on the whole person and connects dentistry with total body health. She is known for the beautiful smiles she creates and cares for, as well as her dedication to continuing education and excellence in dentistry. Her patients love their beautiful smiles and Dr. Borowski’s engaging personality, compassion and honesty. They also give her skilled staff high marks, due to their ability to provide individualized care in a warm and welcoming environment.

Is it really true that gum disease has been linked to human fetal death?
Dr. Borowski: I was at a lecture recently where the doctor speaking presented this case. It’s an extreme case, but yes, bacteria from one mother’s gum infection crossed the placenta and spread to her baby. Tragically, the baby was stillborn. The autopsy specifically showed the exact bacteria that were present in the mother’s mouth. For years we have known that gum disease can cause a baby to be born prematurely or with a low birth weight. Now we have confirmed that it can literally risk the life of an unborn baby.

What kind of message do you think this sends to everyone?
Dr. Borowski: Gum disease, in all of its forms, is a serious condition not to be taken lightly. Take the right steps to prevent it from occurring in the first place, and if you think you have it, see a dentist for diagnosis and optimal treatment. Hundreds of types of bacteria live in the mouth. It’s not only the idea of removing plaque above the gum line with brushing and flossing, but the physical removal of bacteria from below the gum line.

What would you tell women who are contemplating pregnancy?
Dr. Borowski: Enter your pregnancy in good health. This includes making sure your oral health is in tip-top shape. If you are pregnant and have bleeding gums or other signs of gingivitis see a dentist and get it treated right away.

Do younger people have to worry about gum disease? Isn’t it usually a problem older people encounter?
Dr. Borowski: Everyone is susceptible to gum disease, even teens, yet some individuals may be more susceptible than others. The problem is that there is no way for the average person to guess their risk of developing this disease. Family history can give you some insight, but this isn’t the only source of information about a person’s risk. If an individual is in any sort of compromised state they may be at greater risk for developing gum disease.

Can gum disease suddenly appear?
Dr. Borowski: It doesn’t happen overnight—it takes time. The progression of gum disease typically occurs in stages. Caught early, it’s usually easily treatable. Untreated or undertreated gingivitis can progress to a more severe condition called periodontitis. Later stage disease is also treatable, but of course, there’s more involved.

What happens when periodontitis is not appropriately treated?
Dr. Borowski: Periodontitis can lead to destruction of the gums, tooth loss, loss of bone in the jaw, and more, such as blood poisoning (sepsis). This is a potentially life-threatening condition is where an infection in the periodonteum spreads first into the blood and then to other organs in your body.

We’ve discussed problems linked with pregnancy and oral health and blood poisoning. What about other diseases such as cardiovascular disease?
Dr. Borowski: There have been autopsies done that showed bacteria found in arterial plaques were the same bacteria found in the mouth. Information such as this shows a direct link between the oral environment and cardiovascular disease.

Is there a connection between gum disease and diabetes?
Dr. Borowski: Yes. People with diabetes are more likely to have periodontal disease than people without diabetes. In fact, research has emerged that suggests that the relationship between periodontal disease and diabetes goes both ways. Severe periodontal disease can increase blood sugar, as well as be a symptom of diabetes.

What do you do to help patients prevent gum disease and to treat it if they have it?
Dr. Borowski: We educate patients to help them prevent gingivitis and periodontal disease from occurring in the first place. Brushing at least twice a day using correct techniques and flossing are important. For people who aren’t good at flossing, a waterpik may be a useful tool. Having your mouth examined multiple times per year is important. Not everyone can visit the dentist twice per year and maintain a healthy condition. Many individuals require 3-4 visits per year with the dental hygienist. There is no simple answer to how many visits a year you need. It is based on your oral health and your body’s ability to fight bacteria.

How do you know which bacteria are causing someone’s gum disease?
Dr. Borowski: In the past few years an easy swish and spit test has been developed to identify the bacteria present in your mouth.

What should your patients expect during a routine dental check-up?
Dr. Borowski: We do more than clean your teeth, check for cavities, and simply say “Oh look, you have a hole in your tooth, let’s fill it!” Our evaluation is thorough. All facets of oral health are evaluated. The requirements of this vary from patient to patient. Oral cancer screenings, bite evaluation photographic evaluation of each tooth are only part of the process.

MINIMALLY INVASIVE DENTISTRY

Dr. Vicki Borowski creates some of the most breathtaking smiles in the Metroplex. Chances are if you see someone with a drop-dead gorgeous smile, it’s one of Dr. Borowski’s patients. Dr. Borowski provides insights into modern cosmetic dentistry.

What exactly is minimally invasive cosmetic dentistry?
Minimally invasive cosmetic dentistry can range from straightening your teeth and then whitening them (vs. using porcelain veneers to create a bright new smile) to using no-prep veneers, such as Lumineers.

You were initially resistant to offering Lumineers but have recently become Lumineer-certified. What changed your mind?
The company that produces Lumineers is really working to make positive changes to the Lumineer product. With these advancements, I decided that the actual Lumineer product is working to reach the high standards I require for veneers.

Does this mean you will be doing fewer traditional veneers?
The Lumineer concept is great, but in reality, not everyone is a candidate for Lumineers or any sort of no-prep veneer. Traditional porcelain veneers can also be low-prep. Just because you get traditional porcelain veneers doesn’t mean your teeth have to lose tooth structure. My goal is to remove as little of the existing tooth as possible.

If someone has badly stained teeth, such as tetracycline staining, are veneers or crowns the only option?
I use an advanced deep bleaching system called KöR whitening that dramatically whitens stained teeth. It can even be effective on tetracycline-stained teeth, but to be completely honest, the results for tetracycline-stained aren’t going to look as great as porcelain veneers, in my opinion.

Is there anything else you would like to say to our readers?
We take the time with our patients during each visit, and welcome everyone as part of our family. We enjoy getting to know each patient, to anticipate their needs, and strive to provide a level of service and care that exceeds their expectations. You can trust that your comfort level is being considered and respected at every stage of your care.

GET THE REST YOU DESERVE!

About 28 million Americans have some form of sleep apnea, though many cases go undiagnosed. Sleep apnea is a common yet potentially deadly disorder that causes snoring, dangerous pauses in breathing at night, and day time fatigue. Luckily, Dr. Borowski can help you get the restful sleep your body needs with an easy-to-use, innovative treatment that involves wearing a small custom-designed mouthpiece while you sleep.

“When you suffer from obstructive sleep apnea, your airway gets blocked and you stop breathing numerous times throughout the night while asleep. When this occurs, you wake up momentarily to start breathing again,” explained Dr. Borowski. “This awakening is usually so brief that you don’t remember it. The pattern can repeat all night long so you don’t ever get a night of good, quality sleep.”

A CPAP device is the “gold standard” for treating sleep apnea, but many people have trouble sleeping with a CPAP. You have to wear a mask that covers your nose and mouth that is connected to an electric machine via a tube. The machine increases air pressure in your throat so your airway doesn’t collapse as you breathe in.

As an alternative to a CPAP machine, Dr. Borowski offers a medically-approved, custom-designed and fitted dental appliance to treat sleep apnea. These dental mouthpieces are small, comfortable, and convenient with no tubing, no mask and no electricity like the CPAP. She commented, “This sleep apnea appliance helps support a patient’s airways by repositioning his or her lower jaw, keeping airways clear and allowing for easy breathing. Since it’s made from thin materials and comes in two separate pieces, you don’t have to put up with wearing a bulky device every night. Instead, you can sleep comfortably and wake up feeling refreshed.”

Angela, a patient of Dr. Borowski’s, says she feels like a whole different person now that she’s being treated for her obstructive sleep apnea. “After just one night I knew the appliance Dr. Borowski created for me worked. It was so easy to get used to, and I love the fact that I can sleep on my side or stomach while wearing it. I can move around totally unrestrained. I’ve become so used to wearing my sleep apnea mouthpiece that if I don’t, it feels strange. It has changed my life, and it’s such an easy fix for sleep apnea. I feel great now that I’m getting a good night’s sleep. I have my life back!”

Another patient who is a physician added, “The device Dr. Borowski created for me works very well. There was an instant improvement in my quality of sleep, and I don’t feel claustrophobic like I did with the CPAP. It’s wonderful to get a good night’s sleep and feel rested in the morning!”

If you think you or a loved one may suffer from obstructive sleep apnea, schedule a consultation with Dr. Borowski today. With an easy at-home test performed in one night, she can determine if you have sleep apnea and then design a custom sleep apnea appliance for you.

MEET VICKI BOROWSKI, DDS

Dr. Vicki Borowski is one of North Texas’ premier dentists offering both cosmetic dental procedures and general dentistry. In practice for 25 years, she is known for her warm personality and compassion, honesty, and patient-centered care. Her dedication to continuing education and excellence in dentistry shines through, and you can see it in her patient’s smiles.

Dr. Borowski received her dental degree from the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio, world-renowned for its outstanding dental program. She focuses on providing patient-centered care and treating the whole patient with an emphasis on health and wellness, as well as creating stunning, natural-looking smiles, and helping her patients maintain good oral health.

Dr. Borowski stays up-to-date on the latest dental technologies and techniques, attending continuing education classes each year. She is currently taking the Kois Center’s continuum of courses (www.koiscenter.com), an extensive educational process to further her dental education. Dr. Borowski is a member of the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, the Dallas County Dental Society, the Texas Dental Association, and the American Dental Association. She is also a Member of The Crown Council, The American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine and the American Academy of Sleep Medicine.

VICKI BOROWSKI, DDS

17300 Preston Road, Suite 100
Dallas, TX 75252
972.380.6223
www.VickiBorowski.com

Preventive Dentistry • Bridges • Implant Restoration • Periodontal Therapy • Complete Smile Reconstruction • Porcelain Veneers • Lumineers • Porcelain Crowns • Porcelain Inlays & Onlays • Gum Contouring • ZOOM! Laser Whitening • Take-home Whitening Trays • Tooth-colored Fillings • Sports Guards/Mouth Guards • Sleep Apnea Treatment • Nitrous Oxide, Sedation Dentistry • OraVerse (reverses the effects of local dental anesthetic)

Visit Dr. Borowski online for more information or scan the above QR code. Major credit cards are accepted, and financing is available for qualified patients. Office hours are Monday through Thursday, with convenient early hours beginning at 7:00 a.m.

FREE ZOOM! New patients who have an exam, X-rays and cleaning done will receive ZOOM! in-office whitening for free. No more messy trays or gels for you to worry about at home. Restrictions apply. Call today for details.

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