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Dr. Murillo, DDS Cautions about

Link Between Bad Breath, Periodontal Disease and Stroke

 From her San Diego-based practice offering general, restorative and cosmetic dental services for the whole family, Dr. Murillo, DDS, cautions that bad breath may mean more than just embarrassing odor; it can also be a sign of advanced periodontal disease, which may be linked to other serious conditions such as stroke, cardiovascular disease and diabetes. So, early diagnosis and treatment are key.

“Four out of five people have periodontal disease and don’t know it,” says Maricela Murillo. “That’s because the condition is usually painless in the early stages. But, when it comes to periodontal disease, the lack of pain doesn’t equate to the absence of a problem.”

Periodontal disease is caused by a build-up of plaque around the tooth. Plaque is a sticky film consisting of food debris, bacteria and saliva. Over time, if not addressed, it turns into calculus (tartar). When plaque and calculus are not removed, they begin to destroy the gums and bone that supports the teeth, resulting in periodontal disease. 

“Typically, patients only realize they have the disease when they experience red, swollen and bleeding gums,” explains Dr. Murillo. “However, there are several other symptoms of periodontal disease that can serve as warning signs.”

According to Dr. Murillo, these include:

·         Loose teeth

·         New spacing between teeth caused by bone loss

·         Persistent bad breath

·         Pus around the teeth and gums

·         Receding gums

·         Tenderness or discomfort

Since periodontal disease is the number one reason for tooth loss, patients experiencing any of these symptoms should visit their dentist for evaluation as soon as possible. Not only can early treatment such as a cleaning or scaling prevent further oral health problems, it can also help protect against other serious health consequences.

“Research suggests there may be a link between the inflammation and bacteria associated with periodontal disease and other conditions such as stroke, bacterial pneumonia, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and increased risk during pregnancy,” adds Dr. Murillo. “So it’s important to treat periodontal disease early to prevent further health complications.”

Good oral hygiene, a balanced diet, and regular dental visits can help reduce the risk of developing periodontal disease. Dr. Murillo, DDS offers comprehensive services to prevent, diagnose and treat people suffering from periodontal disease and achieve optimal dental health. For more information, visit


Dr. Murillo, DDS Warns About Sleep Disorders and Oral Health

In her San Diego-based practice which offers general, restorative and cosmetic dental services for the whole family, Dr. Murillo, DDS has seen firsthand the negative impact of common sleep disorders like apnea and bruxism on oral health.

“In our practice, we often have patients whose oral and overall health is at risk due to nighttime activities like temporary cessation of breathing and grinding,” says Maricela Murillo. “And the longer these disorders go untreated, the more problems patients can face in the future.”

Sleep apnea is a serious, sometimes fatal, medical disorder that affects approximately 10 percent of American men over the age of 40, and 6 percent of women the same age. Sleep apnea sufferers completely stop breathing during sleep, sometimes hundreds of times in the course of a night, because the airway becomes obstructed, causing a serious reduction of airflow to the lungs.

Bruxism refers to an oral parafunctional activity, most commonly, the grinding of the teeth and clenching of the jaw that causes the most damage during sleeping hours. Typically, the incisors and canines of opposing arches grind against each other laterally. Earache, depression, headaches, eating disorders and anxiety are among the most common symptoms of bruxism.

“Because of the nature of our exams, dentists are often the first health care providers to proactively identify patients who suffer from apnea or bruxism,” explains Dr. Murillo. “The good news is that there are treatment options available that can be performed right at the dentist’s office.”

A number of dental devices can be used to alleviate sleep apnea. They fall into two categories – fixed and adjustable – and are intended to separate the jaws and push them forward slightly to open up the airway, allowing oxygen to flow freely again.

“Our patients who wear sleep apnea dental devices report that they stop loud snoring, feel more rested in the daytime and are much more comfortable going to sleep,” says Dr. Murillo.

While there is no single cure for bruxism, a variety of treatments, including mouth guards and NTI-tss® devices can help prevent grinding.

“Without attention, patients who suffer from bruxism can experience gum recession, tooth loss, fractures of the teeth, arthritis and muscle pain in the area,” explains Dr. Murillo. “It’s critical to intervene early in order to both prevent further damage and begin restorative procedures that may be necessary, such as crowns or gum grafts.”

Dr. Murillo, DDS offers a full range of services to diagnose and treat people suffering from common sleep disorders to improve their health – and their smiles. For more information, visit


Murillo Dentistry Celebrates Ten Years of Smiles

Maricela Murillo, DDS, opened her private dental practice in San Diego with a dedication to restoring and enhancing the natural beauty of patients’ smiles. Ten years later, her gentle, professional care has transformed the lives of hundreds by helping them achieve great smiles – and confidence.

“A great smile can make a huge difference in the way we look and feel,” says Maricela Murillo, DDS. “Whether someone wants straighter, whiter teeth or needs cracks or chips repaired, when a person feels good about their smile, they feel more assured and attractive when interacting with others.”

But Murillo Dentistry is equally focused on the person behind the smile, providing comprehensive care for optimal dental health. The office specializes in general, restorative and cosmetic dental services for the whole family, including bonding, veneers, gum treatment, orthodontics, crowns and bridges, as well as sleep apnea and TMJ services. Dr. Murillo and her team use the most modern technology, including digital x-rays, laser technology for whitening and periodontal procedures, all-ceramic metal-free crowns, and white fillings, to deliver the highest-quality dental care. 

 “Our highly trained and skilled clinicians stay up-to-date on the latest advancements in dentistry to provide the most current treatment options for our patients,” says Dr. Murillo. “We attend dental conventions and meetings to keep abreast of new techniques, the latest products and newest equipment options to provide state-of-the-art care.”

Murillo Dentistry also understands the value of educating not just the staff but patients as well. The practice is committed to providing comprehensive information to patients, including a series of videos available on its website, to help them make informed decisions about their oral health needs.

 “As a practice, we are true believers that preventive care and education are the keys to optimal dental health,” says Dr. Murillo.

Murillo Dentistry is open Monday – Thursday 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. For more information, visit