Dental Tips Blog

May
13

What to Do When Your Child Refuses to Brush

You know that brushing those pearly-whites every day is important to your child’s health. But your little one doesn’t understand that fact, just yet.

What can you do if your child flat-out refuses to cooperate with a tooth-brushing routine?

Here are some ideas to try.

Consult Your Child While Shopping

Most parents don’t like too much input from their junior members while grocery shopping. But your kids may be more inclined to brush their teeth if they get to pick out a toothbrush and toothpaste they like.

Set Up a Reward System

A reward system can help your child to make positive associations with their tooth-brushing routine. Offer a treat, party, or special outing for reaching a goal of brushing so many times per week or month.

Explain Things in Terms Your Child Understands

While saying “it’s good for you” may not be a sufficient explanation for your kids, you can still motivate them to brush if you explain the reason in details they can appreciate.

Try to keep the motivation positive. But don’t hesitate to tap into your kid’s concerns to help them see how brushing is beneficial.

For example, if your child is a neat-freak, let him or her know that they need to brush to keep their teeth white and clean. If your child hates going to the dentist, tell them that if they brush, their checkups will be easier.

Is your child freaked out by bugs? Tiny plaque bugs will eat holes in their teeth if they don’t brush them away every day.

Talk with a pediatric or family dentist in your area to get more tips on motivating your kids to brush.

Posted on behalf of:
Muccioli Dental
6300 Hospital Pkwy # 275
Johns Creek, GA 30097
(678) 389-995

May
13

What Does a Cosmetic Dentist Do?

Dentistry has several branches of specialty practice. Periodontists focus on gum health, oral surgeons reconstruct jaws, orthodontists straighten teeth, and so on.

Cosmetic dentistry, however, is not a recognized specialty, according to the American Dental Association.

So, what exactly is cosmetic dentistry if it’s not a specialty?

Cosmetic Dentistry: An Emphasis on Art

Cosmetic dentistry focuses on treating teeth to make them look as beautiful as possible. While general treatments makes teeth healthy and functional, cosmetic services take things a step further.

Cosmetic dental procedures include things like:

  • Teeth bleaching
  • Gum contouring
  • Minor orthodontic enhancements
  • Esthetic dental crowns
  • Veneers
  • Dental bonding

What Makes Cosmetic Dentists Different?

A cosmetic dentist will take the time to help you create the smile of your dreams. Simply filling or capping a tooth is not the answer. A dentist who focuses on aesthetics wants you to love the results and feel confident in showing off your teeth.

To make the time necessary to focus on the cosmetic aspect of his or her work, a cosmetic dentist will likely treat complicated cases by working with other specialists or hand chosen labs that specialize in cosmetic restorations.

For example, the cosmetic dentist will cover a dental implant, but might send the patient out to a surgeon for the implant procedure. Or they might bleach crooked teeth after they’ve been straightened by an orthodontist. An endodontist can do your root canal, and then a cosmetic dentist can crown the tooth.

Cosmetic dentistry doesn’t mean ignoring health or function issues in your teeth. It simply means that the dentist spends more time making your teeth look youthful, natural, or glamorous during the process.

Schedule a smile consultation today to learn how cosmetic dentistry could change your smile for the better.

Posted on behalf of:
Mundo Dentistry
3463 US-21 #101
Fort Mill, SC 29715
(704) 825-2018

May
13

Should Your Family Use Mouthwash?

Posted in Oral Cancer

Mouthwash is an essential breath-freshener for most people. Others avoid it because they fear ingredients that can supposedly lead to oral cancer.

Is mouthwash safe? Should you stock it with your family’s hygiene supplies?

Know What’s in Your Mouthwash

Mouthwashes won’t cause oral cancer. Some people worry about this because most rinses contain alcohol. The alcohol itself doesn’t have any health benefits. It’s just a preservative and helps the other ingredients to stay evenly mixed.

The alcohol content won’t increase your risk for oral cancer if you only rinse for 30 seconds or less every day.

Choose the Right Mouthwash

Mouthwash can be a very effective adjunct to your oral hygiene routine. Just make sure that you choose a formula that contains things that will help your family.

Some rinses are little more than alcohol and flavoring. These blends will ironically only dry out your mouth and potentially increase the risk of bad breath.

Other mouthwashes contain fluoride, which strengthens enamel against cavities. Still others contain antibacterial agents such as essential oils to prevent plaque bacteria buildup.

If you choose to use a mouthwash, remember that it’s not a replacement for brushing and flossing. Select one that will deliver the benefits your family needs.

Keep Mouthwash Out of Reach of Children

Even kids’ mouth rinses can be dangerous if ingested in large quantities. Keep those sweet colorful formulas high out of the reach of your kids so that they aren’t tempted to drink it like juice.

Mouthwashes can be very effective, but you need to know how to use them.

If you’d like to add a mouth rinse to your family’s routine, ask your general dentist for advice.

Posted on behalf of:
Park South Dentistry
30 Central Park S #13C
New York, NY 10019
(212) 355-2000

May
13

Is Your Bad Breath a Sign of Gum Disease?

Posted in Gum Disease

Having a bout of bad breath is embarrassing enough. But it gets even more frustrating when it won’t go away no matter what you do.

Your chronic halitosis could actually be a sign of a very serious issue like gum disease.

Why Gum Disease Causes Bad Breath

Gum disease, also called periodontitis, is an infection in the gums. Bacterial overgrowth trigger inflammation and the ligaments and bone around teeth start to break down. These decaying tissues give off quite a foul odor.

If you have gum disease, you may notice a strange taste in your mouth or others may comment on your foul breath.

Signs You Might Have Gum Disease

Bad breath is one indicator of periodontitis, but it’s not the only one. You may have gum disease if you also notice:

  • Puffy, swollen, red gums
  • Gum recession
  • Loose teeth
  • Pus around the gumline
  • Plaque and tartar buildup

How to Get Rid of Bad Breath Cause by Periodontitis

If you struggle with bad breath, then popping a piece of mint gum may not be enough to mask the smell. Proper oral hygiene is essential for preventing both halitosis and the gum infections that may cause it.

Maintain fresh breath by cleaning your tongue, flossing every day, and brushing at least twice a day. Use toothpastes and mouthwashes that target gingivitis and plaque. Staying hydrated by drinking lots of water is also effective in keeping breath sweet.

To get rid of the stench, you’ll have to treat the cause of your bad breath. A periodontist or general dentist can examine your gums for signs of disease and let you know what treatment is necessary.

Posted on behalf of:
Montevallo Family Dentistry
711 Wadsworth St
Montevallo, AL 35115
(205) 665-2224

May
13

Is It Safe to Be “Put Under” for Dental Treatment?

You may have heard horror stories about sedation dentistry. Fortunately, even when such stories are true, they are quite rare.

Dental sedation is a safe procedure when performed by a licensed provider and the patient is cleared for certain medical conditions. You also have control over just how safe your sedation appointment is by choosing the right “type” for your situation.

Regular Sedation Dentistry Doesn’t Make You Unconscious

Dental sedation usually involves a medication that makes you drowsy. You’ll feel sleepy and relaxed during your treatment, but you’ll still be conscious. Afterwards, you might not remember much of what happened.

General anesthesia is the kind that makes you “go under” but it’s not used in the dental office. General anesthesia is reserved for complex procedures in an operating room.

Know and Share Your Medical History

It’s absolutely vital that your sedation dentist knows your entire health history and list of current medications. If you hold back any information, it’s at your own risk. You don’t want to find out too late that the herbal supplement you’re taking interacts with the sedation drug the dentist normally prescribes.

By sharing all of your health information, you can plan for a safe dental sedation session with no unpleasant surprises.

Find an Experienced Team

To put your fears at ease, look for a sedation dentistry team with lots of experience. They should all be certified or licensed for the type of service they offer, and trained on how to handle medical emergencies.

Bring a Friend

Always plan to have someone drive you to and from your sedation appointment. This trusted individual will ensure you’re safe and advocate for you while your judgement is impaired.

Contact an experienced sedation dentist in your area to learn more about sedation dentistry safety.

Posted on behalf of:
Dr. David Kurtzman D.D.S.
611 Campbell Hill St. NW #101
Marietta, GA 30060
(770) 980-633

May
13

Is it Necessary to Get a Crown After a Root Canal?

Posted in Root Canals

You might be tempted to leave your root canal-treated tooth uncapped after the procedure. It doesn’t hurt anymore, so why bother doing anything else?

Capping your tooth after a root canal really isn’t an option – it’s a necessity.

What a Root Canal Does to the Tooth 

A root canal is a procedure where the dentist removes a damaged or infected nerve from the inside of your tooth. The hollowed-out space is cleaned, disinfected, and sealed off with a special material.

The goal of this process is to prevent future infection and tooth pain. But it doesn’t make your tooth invincible.

The root canal actually weakens your tooth from the inside. Despite being filled up afterwards, your tooth can no longer support the chewing force it used to. Without protection, your tooth can crack and fall apart.

Crowns Save Teeth After Root Canals 

Crowns are necessary for teeth with root canals for two reasons: they reinforce weak tooth structure and they seal out bacteria.

Without a crown, your tooth will be even more prone to getting cavities. Just because you might not feel the pain from decay doesn’t mean it can’t still cause serious damage. A dental crown protects your tooth from all sides, giving you a stronger bite and more protection against bacteria.

When to Crown a Tooth After a Root Canal 

Your dentist will want to leave your tooth without a cap for some time to make sure the root canal procedure successful. In the meantime, avoid chewing on that tooth. Schedule your follow-up visits as soon as possible so that you don’t put off the crown appointment any longer than necessary.

Posted on behalf of:
Mitzi Morris, DMD, PC
1295 Hembree Rd B202
Roswell, GA 30076
(770) 475-676

May
13

Is it Harmful to Chew without Teeth?

Posted in Dentures

No matter how skilled you might be at eating with no teeth, there are some serious consequences that can result.

Gum Infections

Your soft gums aren’t designed to chew food. They only cushion teeth and bone. If you chew directly on your gums, they can get cut, irritated, and develop uncomfortable infections.

Jaw Bone Shrinkage

Just like your gums, the bone in your jaw wasn’t meant to take the direct force of chewing. The pressure of chewing without teeth can cause your jaw to wear down and shrink, giving your smile a collapsed look. This shape makes it even harder to fit your jaw for dentures or implants later on.

Poor Digestion and Nutrition

Without teeth, food doesn’t spend a lot of time in the mouth. You may not produce enough saliva to help everything go down smoothly.

Teeth are necessary for breaking food down into manageable portions. If you can’t chew your food thoroughly, the large bits won’t break up as well. This can lead to indigestion, excess bacterial growth, and gas.

As you reach for soft foods that are easy to chew and swallow without teeth, you might pass up some key nutrients your body needs. A well-rounded diet that includes crunchy grains and vegetables is good for your health, but hard to manage when you have no teeth. As a result, you can suffer nutritional deficiencies.

Going tooth-free sounds like a good way to save money, but you may end up spending more on the resulting complications. Chewing with a denture is better than nothing.

Are you ready to start talking about possible tooth replacement options? Contact a dentist in your area for a consultation.

Posted on behalf of:
Mansouri Family Dental Care & Associates
4720 Lower Roswell Rd
Marietta, GA 30068
(770) 973-8222

May
13

How Does Filling a Cavity Make It Better?

Posted in Fillings

A cavity is a hole in your tooth that’s caused by acid-producing bacteria.

Dentists have been filling teeth for decades in an effort to stop the spread of cavities. How do fillings work, though?

What a Dental Filling Does 

When a cavity strikes, it creates a weak spot that compromises your tooth’s structural integrity. It’s only a matter of time until biting down on your tooth can cause it to chip or fracture.

Not only do cavities weaken teeth, but they very rarely stop growing once they get started. The bacteria that eat a hole in the tooth multiply and keep on producing the acid that makes the hole bigger and bigger.

Before long, a cavity can grow so large that the tooth becomes abscessed or breaks apart completely.

Dental fillings restore holes in teeth to keep them strong and seal out germs that would only make the cavity larger. Before your dentist fills your tooth, he or she ensures that all the infected and damaged tissues is completely gone.

What’s the Best Dental Restoration?

The kind of restoration you need depends on the amount of damage your tooth has experienced. Treatments range from classic direct fillings to partial crowns to root canals. The sooner you treat your tooth, the more conservative the procedure will be, and the more likely you are to avoid the need for re-treatment.

All kinds of dental restorations can wear down and fall apart with time. But filling a tooth still remains the best way to treat a cavity. Good oral hygiene will help your fillings to last as long as possible.

If you suspect that you have a cavity, call your dentist to learn about your options.

Posted on behalf of:
Les Belles NYC Dentistry
420 Lexington Ave #228
New York, NY 10170
212-804-888

May
13

Dental Bridge or Implant – Which Should You Get?

Posted in Dental Implants

If you’re missing a tooth, a bridge or implant could give you back a functional and beautiful smile. You may be confused, however, about which one to get.

What Are Dental Bridges? 

A bridge is a restoration that spans a gap between teeth. The bridge caps the neighboring teeth with dental crowns and suspends a false tooth over the empty space. Bridges are most often made from porcelain for a natural look and feel.

How Dental Implants Work 

Dental implants are tiny metal screws the dentist places into the jaw bone. These artificial tooth roots support a dental crown as the tooth replacement. Implants don’t require capping the neighbor teeth since they function independently.

Differences Between Bridges and Implants

Dental bridges can be completed in just a couple of appointments. Getting a bridge is not an surgical procedure, so it’s usually safe for everyone. Once you get a bridge, it will stay with you for several years until it needs to be replaced.

Implants require more work and planning than bridges. Because getting an implant is a minor surgical procedure, your oral and general health have to be in good shape before you can qualify for the treatment.

The advantages implants have over bridges is that they are permanent and don’t require reshaping any healthy neighboring teeth.

If, however, you have other teeth around the empty gap that are in need of crowns or fillings, then you may be better off getting a bridge. In this case, a bridge can serve the dual purpose of filling in a gap and restoring other decayed teeth.

Contact a general dentist to find out which restoration is right for you.

Posted on behalf of:
Kennesaw Mountain Dental Associates
1815 Old 41 Hwy NW #310
Kennesaw, GA 30152
(770) 927-7751

May
13

3 Teen-Friendly Orthodontics Options

Posted in Braces

Teens are the most likely orthodontic patients, since tooth alignment and jaw development are still evolving and hasn’t yet completely formed.

If you have a teen who has a misaligned smile, then you know how concerned they feel about their image. Most kids don’t care for the look and feel of braces. If your child dreads getting orthodontic treatment, then he or she may be a candidate for one of the following “no braces-look” options:

Lingual Braces

Lingual braces work similarly to traditional orthodontics, except that they go on the inside of the teeth instead of the outside. These braces take some getting used to and can be tricky to clean. But the main benefit is that they won’t be visible in your teen’s smile.

Invisalign

Invisalign is a famous metal-free braces option. It involves clear trays that gradually coax teeth into proper alignment. Your teen will have to be responsible enough to wear the trays as directed for the best results. Aligner trays are removable for meals, photos, easy cleaning, and oral hygiene.

Ceramic Braces

Ceramic braces are a good economical choice if your teenage son or daughter wants an option with low visibility. Ceramic brackets and tooth-colored wires can hide the fact that your teen is wearing braces.

Which Ortho Option Is Right for Your Teen?

Which kind of braces is right for your teenager depends on their maturity, confidence, and oral health needs. Invisible braces may not be sufficient to correct your child’s tooth alignment problems. Prepare your teen to accept whatever method is best for their case.

To find out what your family’s options are, schedule a consultation with a dentist or orthodontist in your area.

Posted on behalf of:
Group Health Dental
230 W 41st St
New York, NY 10036
(212) 398-969

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