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Take The Time To Do It Right

We all know that brushing our teeth is an important preventive method in the fight against oral disease, but what is this about brushing for two minutes, why does it matter how long it takes?  After much collaboration dental professionals have concluded that it takes at least two minutes - some advise three - to thoroughly clean your mouth.  That includes brushing the surface and around each individual tooth, flossing between your teeth and scraping your tongue. You can’t really brush too often, but when and how you brush will make a difference.  Heavy brushing with a hard bristle toothbrush will over time begin to have an effect on your tooth enamel and once that happens you are at higher risk for tooth decay.  Hygienists recommend a soft or medium bristle brush and always use a fluoride toothpaste.  If you notice an increase in sensitivity to hot or cold liquids you may be brushing too hard. If you’re not sure that your brushing properly or using the best dental ...

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Water Is By Far The Healthier Choice

Sugar is bad for your teeth, that’s a matter of fact.  Exposure to highly acidic foods and drinks is another contributing factor for the invasion of tooth decay.  Any product that combines the two poses a double threat.  Soft drinks, for instance, are a perfect example.  Even the sugar-free type contains enough acid to do significant damage to your tooth enamel.  Water is the much better, and healthier choice of beverage. Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink water, at this point your body is already dehydrated.  The best way to stay hydrated is to keep a glass of water on hand to sip from throughout the day.  In comparison, there is a little saying that applies directly to soft drinks and goes “Sip all day, get decay.”  Professionals recommend that if you do drink a cola or a citrus juice use a straw to minimize the direct exposure of your tooth enamel and rinse with water - good old water - afterward.  The acidic content of t ...

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Get Professional Advice

You know that a home regimen is vital to the maintenance of your oral health.  Regularly scheduled professional checkups are important but a lot can happen over the months between dental appointments.  Brushing and flossing every day and following a well-balanced diet will help prevent any minor issues that may crop up during that time.  But when you see all the dental products that are available today how will you know which ones to choose? Take advantage of the time you have to spend with your dental hygienist and ask her opinion on some of the products that you have seen advertised.  Not only does she keep track of the newest innovations in the field of dental care but she is able to see the results of the products that she may have recommended to other patients.  Always look for the   Seal of Approval by the American Dental Association on the label of any over the counter product you buy. The great majority of dentists and hygienists continue to recommend using a sof ...

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Treatment Is Particular To Age

Family dentists see patients of all ages and treatment plans are developed with that in mind, dentistry is not a “one size fits all” operation. Prevention is key no matter what the age group, we all want to keep our natural teeth for as long as possible.  The older you are the more dental work you have probably undergone and fillings and crowns can wear down after time.  Your dentist can evaluate the damage during a regular checkup so that restorations can be replaced or repaired asap.  When a filling, for instance, breaks away the tooth becomes more vulnerable to infectious bacteria. As people age, they are more likely to be taking an over the counter or a prescribed medication for some malady or another.  Certain of these medications can cause side effects, one of them being “dry mouth.”  Dry mouth is a common cause of cavities in older adults but there are several ways to combat it.  Your dentist may recommend that you concentrate on staying hy ...

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Diagnostic Technology Has Improved

X-rays are an essential diagnostic tool in dentistry because many diseases can’t be detected in the early stages simply by performing an oral exam no matter how thorough it may be.  Tooth decay and bone deterioration may be lurking below the surface.   If your medical and dental history is good and you have had a minimal amount of dental work done you may only need a full set of x-rays every few years but if you are at higher than average risk for disease your dentist may order them more often.  If you are scheduled for treatment your dentist may want to x-ray the tooth before he begins the procedure just to confirm the extent of the infection. Children are more prone to cavities because their tooth enamel is thinner.  Their teeth should be monitored at every stage of development which is why they may have x-rays taken more frequently than adults.  If you or your children have had recent x-rays taken you can have the results transferred to another dentist along with you ...

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Professional Evaluation Is Advised

Some of the over the counter tooth whitening systems are more effective than others.  Whitening strips for instance, seem to do a better job than toothpastes that claim to contain a bleaching agent, and the strips are perfect for people who want to whiten just their front teeth.   The strengths of the various tooth whitening formulas on the market today are all over the map.  Some are too weak to do any real good while there are those that go to the other extreme and are so highly concentrated that they pose a risk for permanent damage to the tooth enamel and can be harmful if ingested. When you consider all the options and even though retail products have improved over time, professional tooth whitening seems by far the safest and most effective choice.  Most dentists offer either an in office treatment or a custom made whitening solution along with trays that can be used in the privacy of your own home.  Both are effective, it’s just a matter of personal preference. ...

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Are You A Statistic?

The basic difference between a regular teeth cleaning and a deep cleaning is that the regular treatment is applied to the surface area of the teeth while a deep cleaning goes beneath the gum line.   A deep cleaning also known as scraping and root planing is done for patients who suffer from gum disease that has progressed past the early stage.  The purpose is to remove infectious bacteria that has gotten into the empty spaces between the teeth and the receding gum tissue.  Depending on the depth of these “pockets” the procedure may be done over one or more sessions using either a locally injected anesthetic or a topical gel.  It  is often followed up with a fluoride treatment for cavity prevention. Gum disease is a common disorder affecting close to 50% of the adult population of the US.  Well over half of those over the age of 65 are affected.  If you think that you might be a part of those statistics there are some symptoms that you may recognize. &nbs ...

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Fend Off Any Ill Effects

A good workout at the gym may contribute to your overall well being and a regular exercise routine is mandatory for some competitive athletes but all this physical activity is not especially good for your oral health.  Vigorous exercise tends to dry your mouth.  The nature of your saliva is beneficial in fighting off the acids that can eat away at your tooth enamel.  As it deteriorates you will be put at higher risk for cavities.  Try chewing sugarless gum during your exercise routine to stimulate the flow of your saliva. Weight lifting is a good way to build up muscle power but you may notice a tendency to clench your teeth as you strain to heft the weights.  The pressure this exerts can have a damaging effect on your teeth and lead to cracks or chipping.  A custom fitted mouthguard however, can provide protection from the constant wear and tear. Seniors are more susceptible to dry mouth often because of the increased need for some medications that contribute to the cond ...

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Complete Your Oral Care Routine

The tongue may not be the most attractive part of the human body but it certainly does a lot for us.  It allow us to speak clearly and enjoy the foods that we love and need to maintain our general health.  The rough surface of the tongue however, provides the perfect place for acids and bacteria to collect and thrive.  We can’t hope to get rid of all of our oral bacteria, in fact most of it is harmless and some even beneficial but we should try to keep our tongue as clean as we do our teeth and gums. The tongue works in conjunction with the other parts of the mouth so that anything that affects it can easily be transmitted throughout the oral cavity.  It doesn’t take much extra time or effort to care for your tongue, just a few strokes of the toothbrush is all that is needed.  An over the counter tongue scraper is another alternative.  Your dental hygienist can make recommendations and provide the proper care instructions. The tongue is often ignored when it c ...

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There Could Be A Reason

A permanent set of teeth is meant to last a lifetime, then why do so many of us lose one or more of our adult teeth prematurely?  Studies have shown that there are specific factors that contribute to the loss. Some medical conditions are known to increase our chances for gum disease, which is the major cause of early tooth loss.  Diabetes and high blood pressure are among the culprits.  Osteoporosis has been associated with the deterioration of the jawbone which is the support system for the teeth. When asked, close to fifty per cent of patients who had suffered untimely tooth loss stated that they had gone without professional dental care for at least six months prior to their extraction and a majority admitted to a history of poor oral health care habits. Since they do most of the chewing it stands to reason that the back teeth seem to be the most vulnerable.  The rear molars are full of nooks and crannies that help them break our food into pieces that are easier to swallow an ...

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