Menu

Archive

Blog

Voice Your Concerns

Tooth sensitivity is one of the most common complaints that a dentist or dental hygienist hear from their patients.  It has been estimated that about half the adult population will at some time experience a level of sensitivity to hot or cold beverages or even a breath of cold air.  Tooth sensitivity can be a symptom of gum disease or bruxism.   It could also be a matter of genetics or due to some sort of trauma. Patients typically see their dental hygienist before the dentist arrives.  Your hygienist will ask you if you’ve noticed any changes in your mouth since your last exam.  Be sure to mention any sensitivity however insignificant you may consider it to be.  If the discomfort is due to a cavity, for instance, it’s best that you have it filled asap.  Without treatment, it may become uncomfortable to brush which could increase your risk for disease. Dentists and hygienists often recommend that patients who are experiencing increased tooth sensitiv ...

Read the rest of entry »

Are Your Fears Realistic?

If you had a lot of cavities as a child and have had more than your share of dental work done over your adult life chances are that you may have had one or two bad experiences along the way.  An invasive dental procedure can be unnerving, to say the least but your dental health demands that you continue to get regular professional care.  Find a dentist who will understand your anxiety and who can offer ways of coping with it. Anxiety is one thing but a dental phobia is another.  Dental phobia is defined as an “extreme” or “irrational” fear of going to the dentist.  Some theories suggest that people who have a phobia realize that their fears are unreasonable but they just can’t shake them.  The feelings of panic and loss of control can be so severe that the person just isn’t able to seek dental care when he needs it let alone schedule preventive checkups and cleanings. How would you describe your apprehension?  A general anxiety may cau ...

Read the rest of entry »

What More Can You Do?

Adults get cavities too.  If you seem to be making more frequent dental appointments due to a toothache or some other issue associated with your oral health it may be due at least in part to the foods and drinks that you’ve been consuming.  Proper diet is essential to healthy teeth.   Your tooth enamel is there to protect from decay getting through to the more vulnerable layers that lie just below the surface.  In order to provide that protection tooth enamel needs the fortification from foods that contain calcium and vitamin D.  Dairy products, and whole grains are good sources of both.  Patients who cannot tolerate dairy are encouraged to eat more green vegetables. Most of us enjoy a snack in the middle of the afternoon or just before bedtime but we have to make good choices.  Apples or grapes vs candy or doughnuts?  Water or milk vs soda or sports drinks?  Get the picture?  If you must have the occasional soft drink sip it through a straw to a ...

Read the rest of entry »

Stop Invasive Decay

The only thing standing in the way of a cavity is your tooth enamel.  Although it is said to be the strongest element in your body tooth enamel can be vulnerable to outside forces such as bacterial plaque and acids.  It’s important to make every effort to protect the enamel and what lies beneath.  If the dentin and pulp are invaded by decay the tooth will become infected and if not treated soon enough it could be lost. Not all the bacteria that live in your mouth is harmful, some are beneficial in fighting bad breath, others aid the digestive system and some even protect against disease.  Then there are the “bad” bacteria.  It thrives on the sugar from the foods and drinks that we consume every day.  When these two forces combine they produce the acid that eats away at our tooth enamel and exposes the under layers of our teeth. If you had to pick just one food or drink to avoid in an effort to protect your teeth from disease it would be soft drinks follo ...

Read the rest of entry »

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 ...

Read the rest of entry »

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 ...

Read the rest of entry »

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 ...

Read the rest of entry »

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 ...

Read the rest of entry »

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 ...

Read the rest of entry »

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. ...

Read the rest of entry »