Dental Tips Blog

Sep
12

Chewing Gum for Oral Health

Mention chewing gum and it may conjure childhood memories of blowing giant pink bubbles and having them pop in your face. Chewing gum, bubble or otherwise, was a treat, one heartily enjoyed, but very bad for the teeth because of all that sugar.

Chewing gum is one of the most ancient confections. It was used by the Mayans and other cultures, who obtained their gum from tree sap. In World War II, gum became extraordinarily popular among U.S. soldiers, who introduced it to the world by trading it on the battlefield.

Its popularity would have wiped out tree populations worldwide had it not been for the introduction of synthetics in chewing gum. To this day, the synthetic base is the predominant form. But oral health concerns have changed the market, so that now sugarless gums are the gums of choice.

Many of those sugarless gums even get the American Dental Association’s famous Seal of Approval. These gums tend to have one or more of the following benefits for oral health:

  • They help increase the flow of saliva following meals, which helps neutralize the acids in the mouth. This is especially good during the day, when you might not have access to a toothbrush.
  • Gum can help re-mineralize the teeth, which helps rebuild protective enamel.
  • Chewing gum may help eliminate gingivitis
  • Finally, gum can help reduce plaque.

If you’re concerned about your dental health, it’s a good idea to look on the store shelves for gum with the ADA’s approval. Remember, the seal doesn’t endorse the product, it just means that the ADA believes the product does what it says it will do.  Your Baton Rouge dentist can provide more information about the benefits of sugarless gum.

Posted on behalf of Dr. Michael Juban, Juban Dental Care

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Aug
9

Drug Free Headache Prevention

Posted in TMJ Therpy

Chronic headaches can control a person’s life, making every day a difficult one. When it comes to treating headaches, medications often have various side effects that are sometimes just as bothersome as the headache itself. Your dentist can help! With drug free headache prevention, many dental patients are able to completely avoid experiencing their normal headaches and wake up feeling refreshed and more energized in the morning since they get a better night’s sleep.

A large percentage of headaches are caused from an inappropriate relationship of the teeth and temporomandibular joint (TMJ), chronic teeth grinding (bruxism) or collapse of the soft tissues in the back of the mouth and opening of the throat. Dentists can effectively prevent all three of these types of headache-inducing conditions by using custom fitted oral appliances made for individual patients.

Wearing a custom fitted bite device during your sleep will keep the TMJ area in a resting position, preventing excess pressure in the joint and grinding of the teeth together. Positioning devices also keep the jaw in a position that prevents the collapse of soft tissues, opening the patient’s airway and in some cases preventing the patient from needing appliances such as CPAP machines. Non-invasive and easily affordable, these bite guard appliances help reduce pain in the head, neck, shoulders, jaw and back. As a result, teeth are also protected from advanced wear due to grinding, ensuring a smile that will last years longer than if you did not wear a protective bite appliance.

If you suspect that your headaches are due to an inappropriate TMJ or bite relationship, visit your Baton Rouge dentist. Your comprehensive oral exam will include a TMJ screening and bite analysis that determines whether or not a bite guard is a viable drug free headache prevention method for you.

Posted on behalf of Juban Dental Care

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