Drs. Kiersten and Kirk Huckel

People are often surprised to learn that oral health is directly related to our overall health and well being. At The Princeton Center for Dental Aesthetics and Implants Dr. Kirk Huckel and daughter Dr. Kiersten Huckel educate patients about the important role that good oral health plays in preventing many systemic health concerns.

A century of studies confirms the link between periodontal disease and cancer, cognitive impairment, cardiac and coronary disease, diabetes, kidney disease, rheumatoid arthritis, obesity, metabolic syndrome, and adverse outcomes during pregnancy, a veritable laundry list of aliments that are of concern to each of us throughout life.

The relationship between periodontal disease and other disease is caused directly by the impact of bacteria from the mouth being introduced systemically into the blood stream or caused indirectly as the result of our bodies response to periodontal disease; inflammation and impairment of the immune system. How many of us have taken our beloved pets to the veterinarian to have the Dr. explain the danger of periodontal disease in animals? Why is there seemingly so much confusion about this relationship in human medicine?

Fortunately identifying gingivitis, the precursor to periodontal disease, in patients during a routine exam can arrest the problem before it develops further by proper bushing, flossing, and regular hygiene visits. Even advanced periodontal disease can be stabilized with dental therapy preventing further bone loss and supporting tissue changes that eventually cause tooth loss.

Focusing on preventive oral health care is more important than ever says Dr. Huckel. During annual exams at his office, he screens for oral cancer, which is a growing health crisis in our country since the prevalence of HPV related cancer cases is on the rise. Early detection is critical in affecting the best possible outcome for these cancer patients.

Furthermore, PCDAI specializes in Biologic Dentistry; embracing the philosophy that patient care should focus on the whole human body as an integrated system, rather than the oral cavity as an independent body part. This enlightened thinking dictates treatment options which focus on optimal health for the patients, for example the removal of old amalgam fillings with techniques which prevent mercury contamination.

There is a growing understanding of the damaging impact that stress can have on our bodies. Since a visit to the dentist can be a stressful event for many people, PCDAI focuses on providing compassionate, stress free options to insure a positive experience at the office. Services provided include nitrous oxide and oral conscious sedation dentistry, in a spa like setting, for those who may be anxious.

Fear of the dentist should never prevent anyone from having a successful visit! Drs. Kirk and Kiersten recommend annual check ups and a hygiene visit at least twice a year. So many reasons to get to the phone and schedule that dental appointment that you have been putting off!

Princeton Center for Dental Aesthetics & Implants, 11 Chambers Street, Princeton. 609-924-1414. www.princetondentist.com.

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