Gar N. Chan, DDS, INC

Holiday Greetings to All!

As the winter season comes upon us,

we wish you health, peace, contentment and the excitement

of experiencing life, feelings and events.

Happy Holidays!

                                                                                       Pieced Santa quilt by Rhona T. Lee

Peri Implantitis – What is your plan?

According to the American Academy of Implant Dentistry each year over 500,000 implants are placed in the United States.  While implants are excellent missing teeth replacements, technical, esthetic and biologic complications occur.

Technical complications can include occlusal (bite) trauma, implant breakage or fracture and loosening of screws and abutments.

Esthetic complications can include exposed threads and abutments, which invites bacteria and debris to harbor in the area.

Biologic complications from tobacco use, alcohol consumption, uncontrolled periodontitis, history of periodontitis, uncontrolled systemic diseases and the inability to perform adequate plaque removal – all can increase risk factors for implant infection and eventual failure.

Implant patients need to be aware that implants are susceptible to similar gum or periodontal issues that natural teeth have and are often attacked more aggressively.   Research shows that periodontitis and peri-implantitis are similiar yet different.  Both the microbial composition and sequence of infection are similar but they are different in three major ways.  Peri-implantitis versus periodontitis is marked by the following:

1.  Higher extensive inflammatory infiltrate and innate immune response:

2.  More severity of tissue destruction;

3.  Faster destructive progression rate.

To feel more confident about your implants long term health, patients should know, prepare and practice the most current methods to maintain them.  To do so, the following are recommended:

A. Regular, consistent and professional supportive continuing care prophylactic visits with the hygienist;

B.  Use of proper home-care techniques;

C.  Use of water-irrigating devices, ie.  Waterpik’s Water Flosser used with the Plaque Seeker tip.

(The tips are inexpensive, easy to obtain and fit on all Waterpik models.);

D.  Use of an interdental brush to provide tissue stimulation and to remove plaque and debris instantly;

(Dipping the brush in an antiseptic increases the benefit.)

For all implant patients early diagnosis, treatment and home care reinforcement of implant infection

(peri-implant mucositis) are essential.

When is your next continuing care maintenance visit?



Kombucha: An Elixir Tea or Champagne?

Kombucha, a growing popular green or black tea, has been called the “Champagne of Life”, but is it really?

Over thousands of years several cultures have claimed that drinking kombucha daily promotes well-being and energy.  Kombucha starts as a tea to which is added strains of bacteria, sugar and yeast.  The mixture is fermented to produce a mushroom cloud formation, which can be ingested and then used to ferment new kombucha.  The fermentation process produces acetic acid and various species of lactobacillus strains that are purported to have positive impacts on irritable bowel syndrome, diarrhea, cancer, heart disease and Type 2 diabetes.

As the Western culture has begun to embrace this  ancient elixir,  side effects are being noted, including stomach issues, yeast infections, allergic reactions, nausea, vomiting and jaundice.  The fermented tea batches can become contaminated with bacteria and fungi which place those with weakened immune systems at risk.  Because the batches contain alcohol, alcoholics should refrain from consuming it.  Due to high acidic pH from 2.5 to 3.5, the content places the enamel of those who sip their tea at a high caries risk.

The  scientific jury is out on this elixir.  If you are a regular user or want to try it, be aware of precautions in order that you can make informed decisions on its risks and benefits.   (Reference:  Dimensions of Dental Hygiene, September 2019, Jill Rethman, RDH, BA, page 6.


Happy 4th of July!


Handmade quilts by Rhona Lee



According to Wikipedia, Independence Day (colloquial: the Fourth of July) is a federal holiday in the United States commemorating the Declaration of Independence of the United States on July 4, 1776. The Continental Congress declared that the thirteen American colonies were no longer subject (and subordinate) to the monarch of Britain and were now united, free, and independent states. The Congress had voted to declare independence two days earlier, on July 2, but it was not declared until July 4.

Independence Day is commonly associated with fireworks, parades, barbecues, carnivals, fairs, picnics, concerts, baseball games, family reunions, and political speeches and ceremonies, in addition to various other public and private events celebrating the history, government, and traditions of the United States. Independence Day is the National Day of the United States.

We are proud to be citizens of this great country.  Happy 4th of July everyone!


Welcome little Layla!


Patients come in all sizes and ages.  This is six year old Layla, who came in today for her first visit with us.

Dr. Chan checked her teeth for cavities and for spacing.  He did this to make sure that as she grows, she will have enough space throughout her mouth for her permanent teeth, which are almost always larger than her primary or baby teeth.  During her appointment Layla’s teeth were colored to show her in the mirror where the “pink colored sugar bugs” were hiding.  Layla could see where she needed to use her toothbrush to brush off those pesky bugs.

All of her teeth were then polished to make them all shiny and bright.  Every six months Layla’s teeth will be checked to monitor her growth patterns and to keep her dentition and oral condition as healthy as possible.

Layla left with a big smile, especially after picking out a toy from the toy box.   Great check-up, Layla!

Dry Mouth or Xerostomia

What is dry mouth or  xerostomia and what can be done to minimize its effects?

People of all ages can have dry mouth symptoms, otherwise known as xerostomia.  This condition may be attributed to many factors either singly or in combination, including but not limited to the following:

1. Medications
2. Allergies
3. Use of a C-pap machine
4. Snoring
5. Age
6. Other health conditions, ie. Sjogren’s Syndrome                                                                                   7. 7. Tobacco and alcohol use
8. Chemo and/or radiation therapy

When dry mouth occurs, salivary flow changes both in quantity and quality.  Saliva helps prevent tooth decay and demineralization of tooth enamel by neutralizing acids produced by bacteria, limiting bacterial growth and washing away food particles. Saliva also enhances your ability to taste and makes it easier to chew and swallow. In addition, enzymes in saliva aid in digestion.

Decreased saliva and dry mouth can range from being merely a nuisance to something that has a major impact on your general health and the health of your teeth and gums, as well as your appetite and enjoyment of food.

There are several simple strategies to offset some of these effects.  They include the following:

1. Having a fluoride foam treatment (Acidulated phosphate fluoride foam with 1.23% Fl ion)  twice a year in a dental office;

2. Application of fluoride prescription strength toothpaste on your teeth overnight and, if you have one, under your retainer.  You will need a prescription from your dentist to fill this at the pharmacy.  The difference between a prescription strength fluoride toothpaste and an over the counter (OTC) fluoridated toothpaste is that the prescription strength is much more concentrated and effective than the OTC. ;

3. Use of dry mouth products, ie. Xylimelt tablets overnight and/or All Day Spray and/or Biotene gel (lubricating gels), mouthwash products, and sugarless oral lozenges.   All of these products are effective, low cost and readily available on-line. ;

The first two procedures will re-mineralized your teeth. With time fluoride applications will decrease sensitivity to cold temperatures and protect your teeth against acids and cavity formation.  The third procedure will help to maintain a neutral oral environment against the increasingly acidic environment.

We encourage everyone to maintain their overall health, especially their oral health!

Easter Greetings

Easter Greetings from Dr. Gar Chan, Rhona, Renee, Susan, Sandra, Susan and Cyndi!  May you enjoy the day surrounded by the thoughts of your family and friends.

woman raising bouquet of tulips


February Celebrations

Annually we celebrate Valentine’s Day, President’s Day and birthdays for all those born in the month of February. Here’s to all of those memorable footnotes!


Basic Life Support Renewal Course

Every two years Dr. Chan hosts a Basic Life Support Renewal Course for our entire staff in the comfort of our office. This year we had the pleasure of having Mark Ganley as our instructor. Mark is a Continuing Education Provider approved by the Dental Board of California and works for HeartShare Training Services, Inc.


With videos and practice mannequins, we updated and reinforced our skills in Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR).  Regular participation in this review helps us assist not only all of our patients should there be a need,  but everyone we are in contact with to provide life saving procedures.


Congratulations and Well Wishes, Donna!

Today Donna Taft completed her dental internship in our office sponsored through the Gavilan Community College Dental Assisting Program.  We enjoyed having you here.  Congratulations and well wishes, Donna!