Dental Tips Blog

Jun
19

Have Your Kids Had Their Back-to-School Dental Checkup?

Depending on where you live and what school your children will attend, you may be told that your kids need dental screenings before enrollment.

Why does it matter whether or not your children have had a dental checkup?

Dental Health Impacts Success at School

Schools aren’t trying to keep out kids with less-than-perfect teeth. Rather, they want to make sure your child will thrive and get the most out of his or her education.

Dental problems can cause physical and emotional stress. Pain from a decayed tooth may make it hard for your child to chew their food and get the nutrition their growing bodies need. Bad breath and stained or broken teeth could lead self-esteem issues and difficulty interacting with other students. Sore teeth and gums can cause problems with focusing on schoolwork and interrupt an essential sleep schedule.

You can schedule necessary dental treatment any time it’s convenient for you. The important thing is that there is a current record of your child’s dental health.

What Happens at Your Child’s Dental Checkup

Your child’s dentist will examine his or her teeth to check for problems or development issues. If it’s your child’s first appointment, they may need a few x-rays, but this isn’t something to expect at every dental visit. The dentist will then let you know if any treatment is needed and fill out any forms your child’s school may provide.

Schedule Exams Before the New School Year

Take advantage of the remaining weeks of summer vacation to schedule a dental checkup and cleaning for your child. This will give your child a good head start for the upcoming year of school.

Posted on behalf of:
Dr. David Kurtzman D.D.S.
611 Campbell Hill St. NW #101
Marietta, GA 30060
(770) 980-6336

Sep
4

Save Your Smile and the Planet at the Same Time

Staying both healthy and environmentally-conscious can be a tricky balance. Here are three eco-friendly ways to keep your teeth and gums healthy and beautiful.

New Toothbrush Options

You should replace your toothbrush every three to four months. This ensures that you always have fresh bristles that work properly. It’s also good practice to toss the toothbrush to prevent bacterial growth.

But throwing out a standard toothbrush every three months adds up to a lot of waste. Switch to a toothbrush made from biodegradable materials, like bamboo. Alternatively, an electric toothbrush may save on plastic since you only have to throw out a small detachable head every few months instead of a whole brush.

Nix the Disposable Straws

Sipping sweet drinks through a straw can spare your teeth the harmful exposure to stain, sugar, and acids. Yet, plastic straws are gaining more attention for their negative impact on the environment. If you want to keep using straws to preserve your bright smile, consider getting a reusable one that you can carry with you and clean at home.

Get White Fillings Instead of Silver

Metal fillings are cheap and durable, but they do contain traces of mercury. This amount of mercury is so small that it wouldn’t affect you. But when the time comes to remove a silver restoration, the drilling process can release mercury vapor into the environment.

On the plus side, dental offices are equipped to reduce mercury vapors while removing metal fillings. Still, you can do your part by opting for resin-based white restorations.

Regular dental checkups will help you avoid needing to have dental work done in the first place. Call your dentist today to schedule a visit.

Posted on behalf of:
Dental Care Center At Kennestone
129 Marble Mill Rd NW
Marietta, GA 30060
(770) 424-4565

Mar
30

Can Toothpaste Really Cure Acne Breakouts?

If you haven’t tried it, at least you’ve heard about it – dabbing toothpaste on that unwelcome blemish to shrink it ASAP.

But does this work?

This old trick for banishing pimples in a hurry is hard to prove effective. It seems to work for some people, but that could just be mere coincidence.

Why Toothpaste?

Almost any toothpaste will contain ingredients that can dry up pimples. Some of these include:

  • Peroxide
  • Alcohol
  • Essential oils
  • Triclosan
  • Baking soda

But these ingredients aren’t any more powerful than those found in formulations meant for acne. What’s even more important is to establish whether it’s safe to be using toothpaste on your skin.

Proceed with Caution

Some people can have a reaction to toothpaste if it’s left on the skin for too long. The stuff that’s in there is meant to dissolve slimy bacteria off of teeth and moist gums. It’s not exactly intended for use anywhere else on your face.

Worst case scenario, you could go from having a zit to having a big red peely patch on your face, if you treat it with toothpaste. Choose at your own risk.

If you want to try a DIY blemish treatment, you’re better off sticking with plain baking soda or hydrogen peroxide. Toothpaste contains far too many other specialized ingredients to get experimental with it!

Benefits of Toothpaste 

Keep your toothpaste out of your cosmetic bag and next to your toothbrush. Toothpaste contains surfactants which help it foam up and spread tooth-strengthening bacteria-fighting goodness all over your mouth.

Regular brushing and routine dental checkups will help you enjoy a gorgeous smile, no matter what breakouts come your way!

Ask your dentist which toothpaste is right for you.

Posted on behalf of:
Greencastle Dental
195 Greencastle Road
Tyrone, GA 30290
(770) 486-5585

Mar
27

Does It Hurt to Get Your Teeth Cleaned? These Tips Can Help

It’s time for your 2 o’clock dental visit and you can’t shake that familiar feeling of dread.

You’re scheduled for a teeth cleaning and you already know how it’s going to go: the pain, the sensitivity, the doubt that the torture will ever end.

If you’re tired of each routine dental cleaning going this way, then the following tips are just what you need.

  1. Ask for Anesthetic.

Sensitive gums may be where your discomfort originates. The hygienist can apply a thin layer of topical numbing jelly to help them relax for your cleaning session. You can even as for laughing gas if you want!

  1. Use Desensitizing Toothpaste.

Most patients have sensitive teeth right after a cleaning. Use a dab of desensitizing paste like a conditioner for your teeth every time after brushing. Do this on a regular basis to strengthen your enamel before your next dental visit.

  1. Lose Yourself.

Sometimes, you just mentally have to go to your safe place. If you don’t focus on the work that’s going on in your mouth, it will be easier to endure the necessary evil.

Bring an audiobook or favorite calming playlist to listen to through headphones and let yourself just drift away.

  1. Switch Cleaning Tools.

Some patients are very sensitive to the ultrasonic instruments that work the fastest for removing tartar. If your hygienist is using an automated tool to clean your teeth and it hurts, you can ask him or her to switch to the hand tools for a while to give your teeth a break. For some people it’s the other way around.

A little honest communication and preparation are all that’s needed to make a dental cleaning more comfortable. Contact your dental office for more help in surviving your next trip!

Posted on behalf of:
Dunwoody Family & Cosmetic Dentistry
1816 Independence Square, Suite B
Dunwoody, GA 30338
(770) 399-9199

Feb
11

How to Fight Tooth Decay with Diet

You’ve heard that eating a lot of sugar leads to cavities. But you may not realize how big of a role your overall diet plays in determining your cavity risk.

Here are a few changes you might make to your family’s eating habits:

Drink More Water

Beverages are a major source of the sugars that contribute to tooth decay. They literally soak the teeth in sugar for minutes at a time. Sweet drinks provide fuel for cavity-causing bacteria and they also impact the acidity of the mouth, which is what causes enamel erosion.

Cut back on sweetened drinks by encouraging your family to switch to water. This will keep the mouth hydrated and your teeth cleaner.

Eat Fresh

Fresh fruits and veggies are great sources of water (which helps clean teeth) and fiber. The fiber is good for your digestive health, but it also does your teeth a favor. Natural fibers in plants help scrub away cavity-causing plaque and sugar while you chew.

Who knew an apple a day could keep the dentist away?

Get More Fiber

Speaking of fiber, you can get similar dental health benefits by upgrading your processed carbs to high-fiber whole grains. The hearty texture can wick away bacteria and slows down plaque-formation, unlike simpler carbohydrates.

Say Cheese!

Dairy is the perfect snack for strong tooth enamel. Minerals found in dairy products such as calcium are necessary for remineralizing the structure of weak teeth. Cheese in particular is good for preventing decay since its tangy flavor stimulates saliva flow. Your teeth rely on saliva to stay clean and to soak up more minerals!

Modest changes in your diet along with routine dental exams and checkups can help fight tooth decay and prevent cavities. Want more tips on keeping your smile healthy, naturally? Visit your dentist or hygienist to learn more.

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

Feb
11

Here’s Why You Should Be Using an Electric Toothbrush

It’s easy to think that a powered toothbrush is an unnecessary gadget. It’s just one more simple daily task that’s been automated to attract consumers. But electric toothbrushes hold out many health benefits. Here’s why so many family dentists recommend you give one a try.

They Get Your Teeth Cleaner

It’s true! Powered toothbrushes have bristles that vibrate at a rate which disrupts plaque bacteria faster than is possible by hand. It is possible to keep your smile clean and healthy with a manual toothbrush, but that can be a trick for those with limited hand dexterity.

An automated toothbrush gets the work done for you.

A Powered Brush Is Gentler Than a Manual One

Some electric toothbrushes come with a feature that warns you if you’re pushing the brush too hard against your teeth. Rough toothbrushing damages gums and enamel and it’s a tough habit to break. Making the switch to a powered toothbrush could be what saves your smile.

You Could Use a Reminder for Your Brushing

On average, you need to spend a full two minutes brushing your teeth. That ensures you tackle almost all the plaque. But it’s so easy to forget when you’re in a hurry! An electric toothbrush that beeps at intervals or has a timer will help remind you to do a thorough job.

In the end, the best toothbrush for you is the one you’ll use. If you’ve kept your smile in great shape for years with a manual toothbrush, then you might not need to switch to an electric one.

Find out what your smile needs by scheduling a routine dental cleaning and checkup with your family dentist.

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

Oct
9

Chewing Gum: 4 Reasons to Smile!

A piece of gum after a meal can be good for your smile, dentists say. Here are four ways you can expect to benefit from occasional gum chewing.

  1. It Freshens Your Breath

This is obviously the number one reason anyone chews gum. We love the taste! Chewing gum can be found in virtually any flavor you can imagine. Mint is a popular choice because it makes breath sweet and clean after a meal.

  1. It Cleans Your Teeth

As you chew on a tasty piece of gum, you’ll notice an increase in saliva in your mouth. Chewing action stimulates saliva production that helps wash away acids and debris from food. Some people even feel that gum nabs those pesky leftovers that get stuck in the grooves on teeth.

  1. It Keeps Your Mouth Comfortable

If you have a problem with dry mouth, chewing on gum can help encourage extra saliva flow. You need spit to keep your mouth working smoothly! What’s more, saliva contains calcium and phosphate which strengthen enamel.

  1. It Distracts You From Bad Habits

Trying to quit smoking? How about a nail-biting habit? Chewing gum could be just the thing. When your mouth feels like it’s busy eating, you won’t be so inclined to put your fingers or a cigarette in there.

Just remember, chewing on a piece of gum is NEVER a substitute for daily brushing and flossing or for regular dental cleanings and checkups! You still need to physically remove plaque on a daily basis and have routine preventative dental care. Gum is just a nice freshener in between meals. Also, make sure you choose only sugar-free gum with XYLITOL to get all the benefits! Talk with your dentist or dental hygienist to get more tips on smile-smart gum chewing habits.

Posted on behalf of:
Atencio Family Dentistry
3773 Baker Ln #3
Reno, NV 89509
(775) 829-8684

Sep
20

3 Ways to Help Your Children Feel Good About Their Smiles!

You were probably thrilled beyond words the first time your baby smiled!

As children grow, their needs and interests change rapidly. One thing that doesn’t change is how much you still want to see them smile.

As you read the following four tips, think about what you can do to give your kid a smile he or she can be proud of!

  1. A Healthy Smile Fueled By a Healthy Diet

With the proper energy and nutrients, your kid will be powered to stay active and keep learning. Good health is a reason to smile! Give your kids healthy snack and meal options to choose from. Offer fresh fruits and veggies over junk food, whole grains over processed ones, and water over soda.

  1. Brighten Teeth and Freshen Breath

Brushing and flossing don’t just keep cavities at bay – these activities will also keep your child’s smile white and fresh. Your child could feel shy and self-conscious about smiling if other kids say they have bad breath or stained teeth. Excellent oral hygiene prevents this!

  1. Keep the Smile Healthy

Regular dental visits are essential to keeping anyone’s smile healthy. At each visit, your child will learn about how they can do their part to prevent dental problems. Regular dental examinations allow your dentist to take care of any problems that come up before they get any bigger.

A strong, beautiful, and frequent smile is one of the best gifts you could give your kids. Bring the entire family to your local dental office for regular checkups. This way, you can make sure everyone has a reason to stay smiley!

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

Jan
26

What is My Hygienist Doing When She “Cleans” My Teeth?

Your dental check-up should include your dentist examining your teeth for cavities, gums for gum disease and screen for oral cancer.  Along with your dental exam, it is equally important to have your teeth “cleaned” by a Registered Dental Hygienist at your dental check-up.  Though you may brush and floss your teeth at home, you can still get “tarter” build-up which can only be removed or “cleaned” by your dental hygienist.

What all is your dental hygienist doing at a typical “teeth cleaning” visit?

  • Examining your gums and the surrounding tooth structures- A dental probe (a mini ruler) is used to measure the space between your gums and teeth to make sure your teeth are attached to your gums properly and to check for gum disease.
  • Screening for Oral Cancer- Checking tissues in and around your mouth for suspicious areas that could be oral cancer.
  • Removing tarter build-up- Removing tarter with special dental instruments, which can’t be done with brushing and flossing. This will help prevent gum disease and/or reverse early onset of gum disease.
  • Removing plaque biofilm and stain with polishing paste- Plaque biofilm causes gum disease and cavities so your hygienist will remove the biofilm and surface stain from your teeth.
  • Flossing your teeth
  • Give brushing and flossing instructions
  • Fluoride Treatment- Fluoride rinse or varnish is placed on your teeth to strengthen them and to fight cavities.

Have you been in recently to see your dentist for an exam and your dental hygienist for a cleaning?  If not, call your dentist to schedule an exam and cleaning today!

Posted on behalf of:
Red Oak Family Dentistry
5345 W University Dr #200
McKinney, TX 75071
(469) 209-4279

Jun
4

How Often Should I Have My Teeth Cleaned?

A question that is common for dental patients to ask is “how often should I have my teeth cleaned?” This question is even more common for patients that have had a long hiatus in their dental care, due to busy schedules or lack of insurance coverage. For the majority of people, preventive dental cleanings and checkups should be scheduled about every 6 months. For others, they may need to be seen more frequently, as often as every 3 or 4 months until conditions like gum disease are managed.

Let’s talk about why teeth should be professionally cleaned. Even with the best oral hygiene (and that means flossing every single day), people will build up a small amount of tartar on their teeth. People that don’t floss or brush properly will have more tartar buildup, as well as excess plaque deposits in hard-to-reach areas that a toothbrush doesn’t reach. These bacterial deposits cause the gum tissue to become infected, which in turn will also encourage the loss of bone support around the teeth. Thoroughly removing all tartar and plaque gives each person a chance at having a blank slate that encourages disease reversal and aids in their regular oral hygiene practices.

People with bone loss or deep pockets around their teeth may need cleanings every 3 or 4 months, usually called periodontal maintenance visits. Delaying these cleanings will only allow bacteria to stay in place and further disease conditions.

During a cleaning, teeth are scaled either manually or with an ultrasonic scaler to remove calcified deposits along the teeth and just under the gumlines. Superficial stain is then polished away as well. If you have visible buildup on your teeth, then it’s time to visit your dentist!

Posted on behalf of Dr. Michael Mansouri, Lawrenceville Family Dental Care, P.C.

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