Dental Tips Blog

Oct
16

What Stress is Doing to Your Smile

Almost all of us experience some severe and even chronic stress in our lives. Taking a good look at your oral health can alert you to any possible changes you should be making in your routine.

Bad Habits

Nail-biting, lip-chewing, cheek-chomping, pen-nibbling . . . none of these are good for you or your teeth. Yet they’re so hard to break!

Bruxism

This unconscious habit of grinding and/or clenching the teeth is a dangerous one. It can lead to TMJ issues, a chipped tooth, gum recession, and worn enamel, to name a few problems.

Poor Nutrition

Poor eating habits often piggyback on stressful situations. Stress is behind excessive alcohol, sugar, and fat consumption. You might even be prone to skipping meals. At any rate, poor nutrition deprives your mouth of the vitamins it needs to fight disease.

Cosmetic Damage

It’s no surprise that stress can trigger those dreaded worry lines around the eyebrows and mouth. Constant tension can simply reduce the number of times you smile in a day and that’s certainly not attractive.

Gum Disease

Studies have shown a link between stress and the rate at which gum disease (periodontitis) progresses. This is likely because anxiety levels impair your body’s ability to fight off infection.

We’ve considered just a few areas of oral health that are affected by stress. But you probably get the idea by now that your teeth are closely connected to virtually every other body system. Take care of your health, take care of your smile! Talk with your doctor about reducing stress in your life and ask your dentist how to keep stress from taking a toll on your teeth.

Posted on behalf of:
Midgette Family Dentistry
3326 Taylor Rd
Chesapeake, VA 23321
757-214-9649

Apr
17

Oral Hygiene Tips for Traveling

Just because you’re heading out of town for a few days is no excuse to leave your oral hygiene routine behind. From forgetting toothpaste to a real dental emergency, here’s how to keep your smile healthy even when you’re away from home.

Get the right-sized toothbrush travel case. Make sure it has some ventilation. If your brush is packed tightly into a case that it can’t move or “breathe” in, then it will never dry out. This makes for the perfect environment for bacteria to flourish.

Air out your toothbrush. Speaking of drying out, set aside time for your toothbrush to enjoy some fresh air. You could leave it on a sunny windowsill (window closed, of course) or on the dash of your car. Too much time spent in a dark travel bag will make your brush quite icky.

Stock up on travel-sized products. You can get any dental product in a travel-friendly quantity. There’s no excuse for not having some toothpaste on hand when it fits so neatly in your purse or glove compartment in your car.

Brush without toothpaste. It does happen – from time to time we forget the toothpaste. Even then, brushing without toothpaste is still effective and necessary to reduce plaque levels.

Have a backup plan. Keep a couple toothbrushes handy in your luggage in case you lose or misplace one at a hotel. Let your dentist know you’ll be out of town if it’s going to be a lengthy trip. Research other dentists in your destination area to find out who you can visit in the event of a dental emergency.

With these tips, you’ll experience a safe trip full of healthy smiles!

Posted on behalf of:
Mitzi Morris, DMD, PC
1295 Hembree Rd B202
Roswell, GA 30076
(770) 475-6767

Feb
21

3 Ways to Prevent a Dental Emergency

Your teeth are strong. In fact, they are made from the most durable substance in your entire body! However, this doesn’t mean that your teeth can’t suffer damage. An unexpected tooth fracture is one of the most common types of dental emergencies. Fortunately, there are ways to restore your tooth from damage, whether it was cracked, chipped or broken. But if you’d like to try and avoid the dental emergency visit altogether, follow these preventive tips for your family:

#1 Wear A Mouthguard
One of the most prevalent places for mouth-related injuries to occur is on the playing field. If your child is involved in sports, consider a custom fit mouthguard for valued protection. A mouthguard can protect the teeth, gums, lips and cheek from injury or laceration. Recent studies have even concluded that a mouthguard lowers concussion risk in youth sports.

#2 Be Smart With Your Teeth
Your teeth are designed to help you chew and digest food. They are not tools for opening bottles or clipping nails. Bad dental habits on a daily basis can cause your tooth structure to weaken and eventually fracture. If you like to chomp ice, bite your nails or rip open packages with your teeth, you’re more likely to find yourself calling for an emergency dental appointment.

#3 Practice Good Oral Hygiene
One of the best ways to ensure your teeth are strong and healthy is to keep them clean. Brushing and flossing on a daily basis keeps cavities at bay. When decay develops on your teeth, the tooth is weakened and more vulnerable to cracking or chipping. Severe decay can also lead to excruciating tooth pain that keeps you from your daily tasks.

While the above guidelines can lower your chances for encountering a dental emergency, there is no way to prevent it completely. If you are suffering from a dental emergency, don’t ignore it. Neglecting to treat a damaged, injured or infected tooth can lead to worsening pain and more costly treatment.

Farhan Qureshi, DDS is proud to offer a full menu of emergency dentistry services in a state-of-the-art dental practice in Arlington. Dr. Qureshi can restore your smile with attention to health, function and aesthetics.

Posted on behalf of:
Farhan Qureshi, DDS
2300 N Pershing Dr, #373
Arlington, VA 22201
(571) 970-5082

Jan
21

Dental Emergency: A Broken Crown

It’s hard to miss it when it happens – the look and feel of a broken crown is almost impossible to ignore. Here’s what you need to know in case this happens to you.

Why You Should Do Something About It

Some crowns are coated with a thin porcelain layer while the underlying tooth is protected by a metal layer. When this cap fractures, it’s more unsightly than it is harmful. But other crowns can directly open up your tooth pulp to infection if compromised.

How It Happens

Crown are usually fractured as the result of accidentally biting onto a hard ice cube or popcorn kernel in just the wrong way.

It’s also very common for a cap to break down simply because it was ready to go. Many years of wear takes a toll on even the toughest restoration. The lifespan of your crown may be shortened further if you tend to grind or clench your teeth together. Because of this, a crack can start slowly and suddenly fracture all at once.

What To Do When Your Crown Breaks

How badly is your crown broken? See if you can move it around. If it’s very loose, try to remove it so that you don’t swallow it.

There’s usually no need to visit the emergency room over a broken dental cap. Contact your dentist to schedule a emergency dental visit within the next week. If you have bleeding or extreme sensitivity associated with the fracture, you should see your dentist as soon as possible.

In some cases, an entirely new crown is necessary. Your dentist will let you know what can be done to repair and save your damaged crown.

Posted on behalf of:
The Newport Beach Dentist
1901 Westcliff Drive #6
Newport Beach, CA 92660
(949) 646-2481

Sep
8

My Child Got a Tooth Knocked Out! What Now?

With summer vacation time to take advantage of, and energy to spend, sports and roughhousing become the order of the day! With the increased activity comes increased risk of injury to kids – such as a knocked-out tooth.

By staying calm, you can help your child to successfully deal with these incidents.

Find the Tooth!

The first step is to help your child remain calm. Address the bleeding with a moist towel against the injured site. Try to recover the knocked-out tooth. It’s possible it could have gotten forced into the bone in your child’s mouth. If you are sure it fell out, look carefully for it.

Caring for A Stray Tooth

A tooth could actually stand a chance of being reattached to the socket as long as it’s kept clean. Keep the following points in mind when handling a tooth that’s been knocked out:

  • If it is a permanent tooth, it can be reinserted immediately (by yourself!)
  • Clean the tooth by pouring milk or saltwater over it
  • Don’t scrub the tooth to clean it as that can damage the microscopic attachment fibers
  • Store the tooth in milk or water if it can’t be inserted at home
  • See the dentist as soon as possible

What Your Dentist Can Do

Your dentist will determine whether or not the tooth can be inserted to heal on its own. If that’s not an option, your dentist will discuss restorative options with you and your child.

In the event of a dental emergency such as a tooth being knocked out, don’t panic. Consult your dentist immediately, and be sure to talk about getting an athletic guard to prevent the same emergency from happening again in the future.

Posted on behalf of :
Prime Dental Care
417 Wall St
Princeton, NJ 08540
(609) 651-8618

Mar
27

You and Your Dry Mouth

So your mouth feels a little dry, but that’s not cause for concern – or is it? Xerostomia, commonly known as dry mouth, is a reduction in saliva flow. It can range from being a problem you hardly notice to a complication you can’t ignore. At its worst, saliva loss can impact not just your oral health, but your overall well being.

What Causes Dry Mouth

In many cases, dry mouth is a side effect of over-the-counter or prescription medications. If you’re experiencing dry mouth, your dentist may be able to make recommendations to improve your salivary flow. If medication is not the culprit, then further investigation may be required todetect an underlying cause. Xerostomia may be the first symptom of a more serious illness.

Complications of Reduced Saliva

Dry mouth can often cause a persistent sore throat, hoarseness, dry sinuses and even lead to difficulties when swallowing or speaking. Not only does it affect your overall health, it can also have a great impact on your teeth, resulting in:

  • Tooth Decay or Loss
  • Periodontal Disease
  • Diminished Sense of Taste

Saliva plays a key role in keeping your mouth healthy and clean, by rinsing away food particles and cavity-causing bacteria. When the amount of your saliva is reduced, it creates an environment that encourages plaque and cavities to develop. Restoring saliva flow is vital for maintaining a healthy smile.

Dry Mouth Is Treatable

If you’re suffering from dry mouth, call your dentist and ask about options to reduce the symptoms. In the meantime, you can try increasing your water intake, avoiding salty foods, and rigorous oral hygiene. Prolonged symptoms could wreak havoc on your smile, so don’t delay in getting appropriate care.

Posted on behalf of:
Group Health Dental
230 W 41st St
New York, NY 10036
(212) 398-9690

Mar
13

Your Dental Emergency

Oral pain should never be ignored.  Even mild mouth discomfort can be the first sign of a bigger problem.  It’s important to notify your dentist for prompt care, if you’re suffering from a dental emergency!

What Can You Do?

When a dental emergency occurs, your immediate reaction is important!  While you wait for expert care, here’s a few helpful tips for the most common oral concerns:

  • A Knocked Out Tooth – Gently rinse an adult tooth and place it back into the socket, being careful not to touch the root.  If that’s not possible, it’s important to keep the tooth moist.  You can retain the tooth between your cheek and gums or submerge it in milk until you get to your dentist.
  • A Sensitive Tooth – Gently swish your mouth with warm water then floss carefully, to determine if the source of sensitivity is caused by trapped food between the teeth.  If pain persists, it may be a cavity or infection, best diagnosed by your dentist.
  • A Chipped Or Broken Tooth – Remove any pieces of tooth that may be loose and bring them to your dentist. In the meantime, gently rinse your mouth with warm water and apply a cold compress to your face to minimize swelling.
  • A Dislodged Crown – If possible, bring your loose crown to your dentist to have it recemented into place.
  • Injury To The Tongue, Gums or Lips – When blood vessels and nerves are injured, infection and permanent damage can occur.  Use water to gently clean the injured area and apply a cold compress.

Call Your Dentist!

While these tips may be helpful for your dental emergency, the most important thing you can do is call your dentist right away.  Don’t endure oral discomfort, especially when your dental health is at risk!

Posted on behalf of:
Linda King, DDS MAGD
4146 Georgia 42
Locust Grove, GA 30248
(770) 898-8872

Jan
31

When to Call Your Dentist After Hours

Do you have a toothache at night time?  You probably want to call your dentist right away, but at the same time, you don’t want to bother your dentist after office hours.  So what should you do in cases like this?  After hour calls to your dentist should be reserved for dental emergencies only.  How do you know if you have an emergency or if it can wait?

If you answer yes to the following questions, you may have a dental emergency that warrants making a phone call:

  • Are you feeling pain that is severe?
  • Is there blood coming from your mouth?
  • Have you had an injury to your mouth or face?
  • Are any of your teeth loose?
  • Are there any areas of swelling in your mouth or on your face?
  • Do you have any swelling or bumps on your gums?

If you are in pain, unable to speak, or are too embarrassed to be seen in public because of your situation – then it probably warrants a call to your dentist. Most offices will accept emergency calls and return your message very quickly to let you know what to do next. If it is a true emergency, it may be necessary to meet you in the office. Thankfully in most cases, your dentist can arrange to have you come in during the next business day.

Many dental emergencies can be prevented by seeing your dentist regularly. Routine checkups and exams identify problems before they have a chance to get worse. If you do have an emergency situation, call your dentist immediately.  All other dental concerns can probably wait until regular office hours to be addressed.

Posted on behalf of:
Crabapple Dental
12670 Crabapple Rd #110
Alpharetta, GA 30004
(678) 319-0123

Jan
26

3 Tips to Keep Your Smile Bright Through the Holidays

It’s the most wonderful time of the year!  Families are together, the weather is cooler and lots of delicious holiday food and treats are made. One concern though, is how will the holiday food affect your beautiful smile?

What are some tips to keep your smile bright during the holidays?

Limit the sweets– Since sugary food and drinks can combine with germs in your mouth to cause gum disease and cavities, it is important to limit the amount of food and drinks sweetened with sugar.  It is ok to still have an occasional treat during the holidays…just try not to make these foods your entire holiday diet!

Limit drinks that stain teeth– If you like drinks such as coffee, tea or red wine, you can still occasionally drink them but like sweets, you will want to limit how many drinks you have.  This way, you will not constantly bathe your teeth with these tooth-staining liquids. When possible, drink them through a straw.

Brush and floss after each meal– It is always a great idea to brush with a fluoride toothpaste and to floss after each meal to prevent your mouth germs from causing harm to your gums and teeth.  You will also reduce the chances of drinks staining your teeth if you brush with a whitening and fluoride toothpaste.

If you can’t brush and floss after each meal, at least rinse your mouth out with water afterward to lift extra stain particles.

What if you have a toothache during the holidays?  Make sure you understand your dentist’s emergency policy and keep their number on hand. The last thing you want to have during the holidays is a dental emergency!

Posted on behalf of:
Alan Horlick DDS
6572 Hwy 92 #120
Acworth, GA 30102
(770) 591-8446

Jun
1

Is It A Real Dental Emergency?

If you are surprised by finding something unusual going on in your mouth, then calling your dentist as soon as possible is a natural reaction. There are some dental “emergencies,” however, that can wait a few days until a convenient appointment time opens up. When do you drop everything and run to the dentist? When you have some time on your side? These guidelines can help.

Pain:

Wait it out – some discomfort is connected to sensitivity from receding gums, or several teeth may ache because of strong clenching habits.

Call the dentist – severe, or lingering pain, especially if it is connected to temperature changes or bite-pressure, or if it is focused to one particular tooth.

Bleeding:

Wait it out – some bleeding on brushing and flossing can be a simple indicator of gingivitis. This is reversed with proper oral hygiene, and a routine dental cleaning.

Call the dentist – if there is nonstop bleeding following a dental procedure or surgery.

Lost filling/crown or fractured tooth:

Wait it out, but not for long – if the damaged area is not sensitive, you may be able to wait, but no longer than a couple of weeks to have the area restored. Never ignore a damaged tooth for long, even if it doesn’t bother you.

Swelling:

Call the dentist RIGHT AWAY – swelling of the cheek, jaw, or noticing any single spots of swelling on your gums could be a sign of dental abscess.

Visit your dentist regularly for routine exams to stay informed of your dental needs. Your dental team is always ready to answer your questions!

Posted on behalf of:
Grateful Dental
2000 Powers Ferry Rd SE #1
Marietta, GA 30067
(678) 593-2979

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