The pH scale measures the acidity of an environment. It starts at 1, which is the most acidic, and maxes out at 14, the most alkaline or basic. The balance of alkaline versus acid is an important one in body chemistry, especially when it comes to your mouth.
Too Much Acid in Your Mouth?
Having a low pH (too much acid) is disastrous for your teeth. Your pH only has to drop to 5.5 for the oral environment to become so acidic that it starts dissolving your tooth enamel. Enamel loss leads to sensitive teeth and cavities.
A healthy mouth should have saliva with a neutral pH of close to 7. That’s where pure water falls on the scale. But a saliva shortage and/or a lot of acids in your mouth can throw that off and cause an unbalanced environment.
A higher pH, on the other hand, allows teeth the chance to recover from acid exposure. Tooth enamel has the ability to remineralize in a basic environment. Saliva is basic and is a good source of the minerals your teeth need to protect themselves.
Prevent Acid Attacks
You can avoid the need for fillings, crowns and other dental restorations by cutting back on acidic foods like sugar, processed carbs, and citrus fruits. Foods like aged cheese and nuts are good for promoting remineralization. Rinse your mouth with water after every meal. Take saliva substitutes if you suffer from dry mouth.
Dental plaque is loaded with acidic bacteria, so daily brushing and flossing are essential to removing this source of acid. Fluoride-rich dental products will boost enamel remineralization and make your teeth more resistant to erosion.
See your dentist to learn more ways to reduce oral acidity and prevent enamel loss.
Posted on behalf of:
Wayne G. Suway, DDS, MAGD
1820 The Exchange SE #600
Atlanta, GA 30339
You only stand to benefit if you make it your habit to floss every day. Here are five reasons flossing is good for you.
Food and germs that get stuck between teeth can create quite an odor. It’s especially bad if a piece of food gets stuck under your gums. Flossing is the best way to remove leftovers that cause bad breath, giving you a sweet-smelling smile.
Teeth darken when they’re exposed to food stains and acidic dental plaque. If you remove these stain-causing factors by flossing, you’ll keep your smile whiter for longer.
Flossing disrupts bacterial colonies that grow between teeth where a toothbrush can’t reach. Dental floss works perfectly to wipe away food and plaque acids that can erode tooth enamel and start cavities.
Do you hate the look and feel of that gritty yellow tartar that grows along your gum line? Also called dental calculus; tartar is calcified plaque. If plaque isn’t removed from teeth daily, it hardens with minerals from your saliva. Calculus dulls your smile and can trigger gum inflammation. Flossing every day removes the bacteria that can turn into this mineral deposit.
Just as flossing slows down the activity of cavity-causing germs, it does the same with bacteria that cause gum disease. The most serious form of gum disease is periodontitis. This can lead to gum recession and tooth-loss. That’s why you can say flossing will help you save your teeth. Regular flossing will also save you a trip to a periodontist.
Need some help with setting up a good flossing habit? Contact your local dentist for advice and suggestions.
Posted on behalf of:
Group Health Dental
230 W 41st St
New York, NY 10036
No one likes hearing that they have a new cavity and need yet another filling. It could feel like you’re chasing them down every dental visit.
What makes teeth prone to growing spots of decay?
The Culprits of Tooth Decay
You could chalk up the cause of cavities to bacteria. A cavity isn’t just one rotten spot – it’s the result of a high concentration of cavity-causing bacteria. These bacteria are everywhere in the mouth, but when they stay in one spot too long, they’ll cause a cavity.
These bacteria produce a waste product that’s acidic to teeth. So as the germs thrive on a tooth, they gradually eat their way through it. The acid wears down tooth enamel and creates a cozy little hole for the bacteria to live in.
And boom! A cavity.
A cavity finds it’s way straight through the tooth to the soft inner chamber of nerves. At this point, you’re looking at an infection called an abscess.
Where Does Sugar Come In?
Sugar and other simple carbohydrates can have an acidic effect on tooth enamel. Exposing your teeth to lots of sugar and sticky carbs will definitely speed up the cavity process by weakening your teeth.
What’s more, cavity-causing bacteria live off of the sugar you eat. Their only job is to transform sugar into acid – the acid which permanently damages your teeth.
First, your dentist has to clean out all the damaged structure left behind by a cavity. All traces of infected tooth are cleaned away and the delicate hole is sealed up with a filling.
Ask your dentist to find out what else you can do to prevent cavities.
Posted on behalf of:
The Grove Family Dentistry
6200 Center St Suite I
Clayton, CA 94517
It will soon be time to think about preparations for a new school year. Perhaps your kids aren’t very excited about this, but even so, you want to give them a great start for another successful year. Power their creativity and ability to learn with healthy lunch options! The following are some ways you can ensure that their lunches will preserve a healthy smile.
Aim to Pack Things Like: fresh fruits and vegetables; whole grain breads and crackers; milk, cheese and yogurt; nuts; water.
Avoid: Sports drinks; soda; gummy snacks; sweet processed snack foods.
Healthy Lunch Examples
A turkey sandwich on whole-grain bread, a peeled and sliced kiwi, carrot sticks, and a handful of almonds.
Celery sticks with peanut butter, an apple, cheddar cheese slices, and a yogurt.
Tuna or chicken salad, whole grain crackers, strawberries, milk, and sweet pepper slices.
Posted on behalf of:
Rowe Family Dental Care
2320 Satellite Blvd NW #120
Duluth, GA 30096
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