Dental Tips Blog

Jan
3

Childhood Bruxism: What Every Parent Needs to Know

“Bruxism” is the medical term for teeth grinding, which often happens at night. It is a subconscious habit that both kids and adults can suffer from. Here’s what you as a parent need to know about bruxism habits observed in your children:

Bruxism Is a Common Childhood Problem

As many as 3 out of every 10 kids will go through a bruxism phase. If your child grinds his or her teeth, rest assured that this is not an unusual problem. Let your child’s dentist know about the habit so that they can monitor their teeth for signs of trouble.

Bruxism Can Have Many Unknown Causes

No one really knows exactly why kids grind their teeth, but they don’t do it on purpose; it usually happens in their sleep. The habit may be caused by different factors such as:

  • Earache
  • Growing pains
  • Stress
  • Tooth development

Try to communicate with your child to find out if there is some stressful anxiety or conflict that could be behind their teeth grinding habit.

Most Kids Grow Out of Bruxism

Most kids only brux temporarily and the habit stops on its own before it can cause too much damage. You should still seek professional help from a dentist to monitor and treat the problem. This will mitigate any negative effects for as long as the problem persists.  Your dentist can fit your child with a custom dental nightguard to protect your child’s teeth from damage due to teeth grinding.

Signs Your Child Has a Serious Bruxism Problem

Many kids experience a brief bruxism phase and have no damage to show for it. Your child’s habit may require an intervention, however, if you notice any of these signs:

  • Flat teeth
  • Complaints of a sore jaw or toothaches
  • Chipped teeth

Learn more about bruxism by taking your child for regular dental checkups.

Posted on behalf of:
Dental Care Acworth
5552 Robin Road Suite A
Acworth, GA 30102
(678) 888-1554

Dec
30

Why Cold Weather Makes Your Teeth Hurt

Aching teeth is a common complaint in the winter. Maybe your teeth are tingling right now just thinking about breathing in the icy air. What causes this phenomenon?

How Your Teeth Become Sensitive

Your teeth have a protective and hard yet brittle enamel layer on the outside. On the inside is a thicker, softer, and more flexible layer called dentin. There’s a hollow space inside the dentin that holds the nerves and blood vessels that nourish the tooth.

Dentin contains fluid-filled channels or pores that communicate sensations to the nerves in the tooth. This is how your teeth can feel texture, pressure, and temperature. The enamel helps insulate your tooth.

In extreme conditions like winter weather, your teeth more exposed to cold temperatures. This chilly air itself can sting your teeth. But that’s not all; your teeth contract in cold temps. Tightening up every time they’re exposed to cold can cause the inflexible enamel to develop microscopic cracks. These cracks then expose the sensitive dentin even more.

Losing your tooth enamel in other ways can also lead to increased tooth sensitivity in the winter.

Are You Suffering from Enamel Loss?

Your teeth may be unusually sensitive in cold weather because of a serious problem with your tooth enamel such as:

  • Teeth grinding
  • Toothbrush abrasion
  • Acid erosion
  • Tooth decay
  • Cracked or chipped tooth

Your tooth roots which don’t have an enamel covering can also become very sensitive if they’re exposed via gum recession.

Your dentist can help you decide on a solution for getting relief from your sensitivity. Visit your dentist for a full checkup to find out if your tooth sensitivity is due to thin enamel or a more serious problem.

Posted on behalf of:
Pure Smiles Dentistry
2655 Dallas Highway Suite 510
Marietta, GA 30064
770.422.8776

Dec
30

Should You Try Natural Remedies for Tooth Pain?

Do you have a toothache? A fear of the dentist or worry over the cost of dental care might hold you back from getting professional help. But you don’t want to live with the pain either, so you may be tempted to try natural at-home remedies that you find online.

Are these methods safe and effective, though?

Here’s what you should know:

Natural Tooth Pain Remedies: Temporary Solutions

There are many natural materials that have a soothing effect on the body. One popular natural toothache reliever is clove. It’s so effective that clove oil is a main ingredient in many professional dental materials. Other suggested remedies include garlic, peppermint oil, turmeric, and salt water.

While you may find a natural solution that kills the pain, it won’t address the underlying cause. You will eventually need professional medical treatment to prevent the problem from getting worse.

Some At-Home Toothache Remedies Are Dangerous!

Not all solutions you read online are safe for everyone. Some toothache “cures” can be downright harmful. For example, some people recommend putting an aspirin right against a sore tooth and letting it dissolve. Swallowing a painkiller can help manage pain, but putting aspirin right against your gums or cheek can cause painful burns.

Natural Remedies Won’t Cure Teeth

Natural “remedies” for dental issues are usually just methods for either dulling pain or preventing problems. They can’t actually repair a cracked tooth, treat gum recession, or treat cavities once these problems set in.

Don’t be fooled by the countless remedies that sound too good to be true. You might only end up wasting time and giving your dental problem a chance to get worse. Instead, seek out professional dental care to address the issue at its source.

Posted on behalf of:
Precision Digital Dentistry
674 US-202/206
Suite 7
Bridgewater, NJ 08807
(908) 955-6999

Dec
27

Dental Sedation Makes Dentistry Safer for Your Children

As a parent, you may wonder how the trend of dental sedation for kids can affect your family.

Dental sedation can actually make dentistry a safer and more positive experience for children, especially for those with special needs or heightened anxiety.

Types of Sedation Used in Pediatric Dentistry

Dental sedation for is administered in four main methods:

  • Local anesthesia (numbing shots)
  • Nitrous oxide (laughing gas)
  • Oral medication
  • IV sedation

Each of these methods are perfectly safe for children. Your child’s dentist will help you decide which kind your kids need based upon their unique treatment circumstances.

Benefits of Sedation During Dentistry for Children

How can sedation make dentistry safer for kids?

The goal of dental sedation is not to render your child unconscious. Rather, low levels of sedation will help your child relax and remain calm during dental treatment.

Children who get nervous or excited or upset at the dentist’s office can move around a lot. This makes it difficult and sometimes dangerous to try working on their teeth. By calming your child with sedation, they will stay still, cooperative, and safe during treatment.

Additionally, some children suffer high levels of anxiety when they visit the doctor or dentist. Elevated stress levels can take a toll on their bodies. Dental sedation helps kids to relax and remain stress-free.

Finally, sedation can help your child to develop a positive view of dental treatment. If waking up from a nap is all they can remember from their procedure, then they won’t have any reason to develop a negative view of their dental experience.

Is sedation necessary for your child’s next dental visit? Find out by scheduling a one-one-one consultation with your family dentist.

Posted on behalf of:
Gold Hill Dentistry
2848 Pleasant Road #104
Fort Mill,  South Carolina 29708
(803) 566-8055

Dec
24

What Is That Gunk on Your Teeth?

Have you ever scraped a fingernail against your tooth and noticed an accumulation of sticky film? You’ve probably heard the terms “plaque” and “tartar” before. But you may not know exactly what they are.

What Is Dental Plaque?

Dental plaque is a pasty deposit made up of bacteria, food, and fluids from your gums. A plaque layer develops on all surfaces of your teeth within hours after brushing and keeps getting thicker until you remove it by brushing and flossing.

Plaque is clear until it reaches a certain thickness of growth. It can look white or take on a yellow hue. Plaque grows faster after you eat, especially after eating sugar and other carbohydrates.

Dental plaque is the stuff that comes off when you scrape your teeth with your fingernail or clean them with a toothbrush.

Where Does Tartar Come From?

Tartar, also known as dental calculus, is mineralized plaque. It forms in areas where the plaque was left behind to mix with minerals in the saliva which cause it to harden.

Calculus is chalky and hard. It can be white or yellow like plaque and it can even turn brown or black from stain. This tartar buildup won’t come off with a toothbrush or fingernail no matter how hard you try. It stays on your teeth until it’s taken off with special dental tools.

How to Keep Your Teeth Gunk-Free

You can slow down the growth of debris on your teeth by brushing and flossing thoroughly every day. In order to prevent plaque and tartar from causing dental problems, however, you’ll need professional dental cleanings.

Contact your local dentist to schedule a teeth cleaning and to learn more about keeping your teeth free of unwanted buildup!

Posted on behalf of:
Gainesville Dental Group
1026 Thompson Bridge Rd
Gainesville, GA 30501
(770) 297-0401

Oct
18

5 Ways to Avoid Sensitive Teeth This Winter

Does just the thought of the fast-approaching cool weather make your teeth sting? Many people struggle with having teeth that are unusually sensitive to cold air.

Here are a few ways you can minimize that wintery zing and keep your sensitive teeth comfortable in the upcoming chilly season.

  1. Use Fluoride Toothpaste and Mouthwash

Fluoride is a mineral that can fill in microscopic pores of weak and worn areas in your enamel. It’s important for preventing cavities, but this process also improves insulation on sensitive tooth surfaces. Increasing your teeth’s exposure to fluoride with toothpastes and rinses can reduce sensitivity.

  1. Get a Professional Fluoride Treatment

Your dentist may be able to offer a special kind of fluoride varnish. This varnish sticks to your teeth for several hours. It allows your enamel to absorb the maximum amount of fluoride possible.

  1. Try Desensitizing Toothpaste

Desensitizing toothpastes contain potassium nitrate which helps block up open pores on the enamel surface. This provides extra insulation for sensitive or worn teeth.

  1. Switch to a Softer Toothbrush

Brushing gently with a toothbrush with soft bristles will help you avoid wearing away more enamel. Soft bristles also feel better on sensitive teeth.

  1. Avoid Acidic Foods

Foods high in acid can further dissolve your tooth enamel. Stay away from things like soda, citrus fruits, and vinegar.

  1. Ask Your Dentist About Treating Sensitive Teeth

When nothing else seems to work, ask your dentist for help in relieving tooth sensitivity. You may need a filling or crown to protect very sensitive teeth. Sometimes, dental sensitivity is due to a serious oral health issue.

Call your dentist today for more tips on preventing sensitive teeth.

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

Jun
19

Should You Get an Electric Toothbrush?

A powered toothbrush might seem like an “unnecessary” gadget. Who wants to pay for a machine that does the same thing a cheaper manual toothbrush can? As a matter of fact, the American Dental Association (ADA) has stated that both electric and manual brushes are effective at cleaning teeth.

So why should you make the switch to a powered toothbrush?

Powered Brushes Are Good for Limited Hand Mobility

The bristles on an electric toothbrush vibrate so that your hand doesn’t have to move around quite so much. This makes a powered brush perfect for those with conditions like rheumatoid arthritis, which make it difficult to grasp a toothbrush.

Did you recently injure your dominant hand in an accident? It can be tricky to brush with the opposite one, so using a powered toothbrush will ensure that you can still get your teeth clean.

Powered Brushes Are “Smart”

Most electronic toothbrushes have built-in systems to time your brushing routine and even gauge how much pressure you’re using when you brush. These features can help you brush thoroughly yet gently to preserve your gums.

Powered Brushes Can Help You Get a More Thorough Clean

Electronic brushes have some other surprising benefits. For example, using an electronic tooth brush has proven to help people pay more attention to their dental health.

Power toothbrushes also make brushing easier for people with braces. What’s more, you only have to change out the head on a power brush every few months instead of throwing out the whole thing.

If you’re interested in trying an electric toothbrush, ask your dentist which brand they would recommend for your specific situation.

Posted on behalf of:
Georgia Orthodontics & Children’s Dentistry
13075 Hwy 9, Suite 110
Milton, GA 30004
(770) 521-2100

May
15

Why Did the Pediatric Dentist Prescribe Fluoride for My Child?

There’s fluoride in toothpaste, fluoride in mouthwash, and fluoride in tap water…so why did the pediatric dentist just advise for your child to start using a prescription strength fluoride before bed each night?

Here are a few reasons why it might be the case:

There’s a cavity starting to form. If caught early enough, enamel demineralization can be reversed before it completely evolves into an active cavity (hole) in the tooth. Adding extra minerals back into the tooth can help the weak spot to remineralize. 

Your child recently got braces. It’s hard to clean around orthodontic appliances, so adding fluoride can help to prevent those dreaded “white circles” that pop up when plaque hangs out around fixed brackets on the teeth. 

Fluoride levels in the water aren’t regulated. If you’re using well water or live in a certain area where fluoride isn’t controlled in the water supply, it’s important for your child to get the recommended amount while his or her teeth are still growing. 

They’ve had several cavities lately. Maybe all of your child’s cavities have been filled and there aren’t any more fillings left on the treatment plan. But the fact is that cavity-causing bacteria are still hiding somewhere in their mouth, and since your child is prone to getting more cavities than normal, upping the fluoride use each day can help prevent new tooth decay from forming.

Prescription fluoride for daily use is different than the single fluoride treatment that’s applied to your child’s teeth after they’ve had a cleaning. Talk to your pediatric dentist to learn more about the types of fluoride and what they’re used for.

Posted on behalf of:
Pure Dental Health
2285 Peachtree Rd #203
Atlanta, GA 30309
(678) 666-3642

Apr
9

5 Healthy Foods That Are Actually Bad for Your Teeth

You know that soda and sugary treats are bad for your smile. But you might be surprised to learn that even some healthy foods can be harmful to your dental health.

  1. Oranges

Loaded with vitamin C and water, oranges are the perfect defense against the common cold. On the downside, all that ascorbic acid (vitamin C) is harsh on tooth enamel. Try to sip your orange juice through a straw to minimize contact with your teeth.

  1. Popcorn

Popcorn is a very versatile snack – light, yet satisfying and a good source of fiber. But it can be bad for your teeth if your popcorn is coated with caramel. Even if you opt for no toppings, those popcorn hulls can get wedged in your gums and cause inflammation.

Crunching on half-popped kernels is very damaging to teeth and can cause a cracked or chipped tooth.

  1. Raspberries

Some research suggests that raspberries can help regulate mood swings. But the little seeds in these healthful berries can be painful when they get stuck between teeth or wedged in a molar.

  1. Chia Seeds

Chia seeds are a great source of antioxidants, calcium, fiber, and omega-3 fatty acids. But to keep those pesky seeds from getting lodged in your teeth, try enjoying this dietary supplement ground up into a gelatin-like powder.

  1. Dried Fruit

Dried fruit is a convenient way to get your daily fiber and vitamins. Chew with caution, however, since sticky dried fruit is also high in sugar and can get stuck in your teeth, increasing your risk for cavities.

Is your diet smile-friendly? Find out by scheduling a checkup at your local dental office.

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

Feb
17

Do You Know the Signs of a Dental Abscess?

“Dental abscess” is a scary term since it usually refers to pain or the loss of a tooth. Do you know the signs? Here are some things to watch out for.

Pain That Spreads

An abscess occurs when the nerve in a tooth dies because of decay or trauma. This is naturally a painful process, but the pain from an abscess isn’t limited to just the tooth. You could have an abscessed tooth if you have a throbbing pain that radiates from your tooth to other parts of your mouth and face. Read the rest of this entry »

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