Category Archives: Uncategorized

Dentures vs. Implants: A Guide

If you are missing teeth and looking to restore beauty and functionality to your smile, your dentist has probably thrown around the words “dentures” and “implants” quite a bit. Sometimes, though, it’s hard to remember the differences in looks, installation, and cost. This guide will provide you with a quick overview of the similarities and differences between dentures and implants, so you can make an educated decision on which restoration is right for you!

The health of your gums and jaw are major factors in whether you should choose implants or dentures. If you have strong, healthy gums and jaw bones, implants may be a good choice for you. They are totally secure and are attached directly to your jaw, making them the next best thing to natural teeth! Financially, they may cost slightly more than dentures, but because they are a more permanent solution, many patients consider them to be a worthwhile investment.

Dentures are removable false teeth. Usually secured with adhesive (although some kinds of dentures snap on to existing teeth), they can replace just a few teeth (partial dentures) or a whole row (full/complete dentures). These are a good option if you don’t want to go through the process of getting implants or just need an aesthetic solution for your missing teeth rather than a full overhaul of your smile’s functionality. Dentures also tend to be a more affordable solution for an incomplete smile, while still being fully customizable.

According to recent studies, it is estimated that approximately 70% of adults aged 33-45 years in the United States have at least one missing tooth, and an even higher percentage of older adults. With all the options available to you, it only makes sense to talk to your dentist about restoring the health and beauty of your smile today!

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Taking Care of Teeth After Cancer Treatment

There are plenty of health challenges to face after cancer treatment, including oral health issues. You might need anything from a simple cleaning to more extensive dental work. Here are some tips to follow so that you can get the best oral health once you finish treatment.

Visit your dentist to find out what is going on in your mouth. Many cancer patients may have severe tooth decay due to dry mouth syndrome that occurs during treatment. A dentist can help treat the decay by filling cavities and doing other procedures to ease oral health issues.

What can you do in your own time to keep your mouth healthy? First, keep up a daily oral health care routine, including daily brushing, flossing, and rinsing. Second, make sure to avoid tobacco and eat nutritious foods (such as fruits and vegetables!). Although you may already be well aware of the importance of these steps, they’re especially critical for maintaining a healthy post-treatment smile.

Speak to a dental professional for any serious treatments or procedures that you may need.

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Rheumatoid Arthritis and Oral Health

Rheumatoid Arthritis is an autoimmune disorder that afflicts over 1.3 million Americans. Many people don’t realize that there are serious oral health risks that have been associated with arthritis. Current research suggests that patients with rheumatoid arthritis are at a greater risk for gum disease and other oral health issues.

If you’re a patient who suffers from Rheumatoid Arthritis, do not fear! Below are three steps you can take to keep your teeth and gums happy and healthy.

One of the most common forms of bacteria buildup in the mouth, gingivitis, causes an inflammation of the gums and tissues and because rheumatoid arthritis patients are more susceptible to chronic inflammatory diseases it puts them at a higher risk of developing the disease. Also, because of the stiffness created from rheumatoid arthritis, the process of brushing and flossing could also be affected, again potentially leading to more bacteria forming in the oral cavities.

Patients cannot rid themselves of this arthritis, so what can they do specifically to help them from preventing this bacteria buildup?

Checkups

First things first! It is important to schedule regular checkups with your local dentist so they can help you monitor your dental health and overall oral hygiene. If problems arise, they should be the first to know and will help you back to a normal healthy smile!

Electronics

If you find that it has been getting harder to hold a regular toothbrush during your daily routine, try making the switch to an electronic toothbrush! Electronic brushes are terrific at cleaning all the “nooks and crannies” of your teeth without the grinding, repetitive motion associated with using a regular toothbrush.

Prescriptions

There are toothpastes and mouthwashes available that require a prescription (your dentist can write this for you). These aim to assist in bacteria prevention in the mouth with a greater intensity than your average off-the-shelf brands.

If you take the proper precaution and see your dentist regularly, having a healthy mouth while living with Rheumatoid Arthritis will be possible!

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Four Surprising Things That Are Ruining Your Teeth

There are many things that can harm our teeth. You probably know about the general things to avoid for healthy teeth, such as sugary sodas, acidic foods, and sticky candies. But what else is wrecking our teeth that we have no clue about?

Here is a list of things that are ruining your teeth and you didn’t even realize it.

Juicing
Juicing is a hot trend that many people love. While cold-pressed juices may be full of vitamins and nutrients, they are also packed with sugar and acid. This excess amount of sugar does the same thing to your enamel as if you were bathing your teeth in candy. The sugar turns into acid in our mouths and erodes our enamel.

Next time you reach for a juice, try using a straw to keep juice off the surface of your teeth.

Chewable Vitamins
Chewable vitamins may be more fun to eat and taste better than vitamins in pill form, but they are worse for your teeth. Their sticky design makes them stick in your teeth. Combine that with the sugar they contain and it is a recipe for a cavity.

It may not be as fun, but opt for your vitamins in pill form. Your teeth will thank you for it!

Barbecue Sauce
Before you reach for barbecue sauce at your next outdoor party, know that it is harming your teeth. Barbecue sauce is full of sugar, and if the sauce remains in your mouth for long enough, it could even cause discoloration, along with decay.

After your next barbecue, make sure to brush right after eating so to protect your teeth.

White Wine
Many people will tell you to steer clear of wine for the sake of your oral health, and they are right! While red wine is known for staining your teeth, the acid levels in white wine can also cause harm. The high acidity will wear away at enamel and make your teeth more likely to stain.

Next time you enjoy white wine, consider rinsing your mouth with water to neutralize acids in between sips!

Anxiety in the Dentist’s Chair

When some of us think of the dentist, we may feel anxious and frightened… so how do we conqueror such a fear? We need the dentist; they help make our smiles healthy and beautiful, so we can’t simply avoid them forever! Here is a look into dental anxiety, how it is caused, and how to overcome it.

The main fear of dental visits is the uncertainty of what exactly will happen there. Did you know that up to “15% of Americans avoid the dentist” due to fear? This is especially common with the older crowd, who have unfortunately experienced dental care before modern technologies. The good news is that our children, however, are not burdened by negative experiences due to the newer tools and improvements in techniques implemented in each visit from a young age. With the fear being present for many though, what can be done to overcome this?

One of the main things that can help lower a patient’s dental anxiety is being able to openly communicate with their dentist. This allows them to break down the process of what exactly you will be experiencing and allow you time to process it and feel safe. Next, when there are multiple tools and hands present in your mouth, it may be hard for the dentist to hear what you’re saying, so talk with your hands to express how you feel or if something is uncomfortable. Don’t think you have to undergo a painful procedure—there are ways, like sedation dentistry, to ensure you have a pain-free experience every time.

Nowadays there are also televisions, music players, and other distractions your dentist can provide chair-side to lower your anxiety and get your mind off of getting treated. Lastly, consider talking with your dentist about certain medications that could help to lower your anxiety, or about sedation dentistry, which can put one in a state of partial or full unconsciousness. It is also important to remember to take a break if need be. If dental anxiety is something you have been experiencing, your dentist will understand and try their best to turn those negative experiences into positives ones.

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4 Mouthwash Options: Advantages and Drawbacks

Many dentists recommend using mouthwash in combination with brushing and flossing for keeping fresh breath, preventing cavities, and fighting gingivitis. However, not all mouth rinses are created equal! There are plenty of factors to consider when buying mouthwash. Between the hundreds of brands, formulas, and even colors to choose from, which option is the best for you? We’re here to help you decide!

Cosmetic Mouthwash

These mouthwashes are primarily used to combat bad breath. They don’t tend to offer much in the way of protection from bacteria or infections, so if you want to use cosmetic mouthwash, it’s best to do so in the way you might use a breath mint—in conjunction with a stronger mouthwash that will provide more health benefits.

Alcohol Mouthwash

In addition to fighting bad breath, the antiseptic properties of alcohol have historically been known to rid the mouth of germs and help to curb viral infections. While alcohol-based rinses have long been an industry standard, they have fallen somewhat out of fashion in recent years due to a possible link with oral cancer. In addition to this potential risk factor, alcohol-based rinses tend to dry out the mouth, which is ultimately not ideal for your overall dental health. Should you still want to use an alcohol-based mouthwash, be warned: rinses with alcohol can also cause a burning sensation throughout your mouth.

Antibacterial Mouthwash

Antibacterial mouthwash is great for eliminating bad breath and preventing periodontal diseases. Depending on the brand, rinses will either employ antibacterial chemicals like cetylpyridinium or natural germ-fighters like witch hazel as the primary ingredient. Many popular antibacterial mouthwashes will include alcohol as well, so if you’ve chosen to avoid alcohol-based washes, check the label carefully!

Fluoride Mouthwash

If you feel as though your cavity count has you frequently sitting in the dental chair, your dentist will probably suggest a fluoride rinse. Fluoride rinses work to strengthen your enamel, which in turn defends your teeth against decay. While fluoride mouthwash will help ease fresh breath, it’s best not to ingest or overuse it. Swallowing or overuse of fluoride can put you at risk for fluorosis, or fluoride poisoning. If you find yourself wondering if you’re using your fluoride mouthwash too much, consult your local dentist for peace of mind!

Using mouthwash is a great step in keeping your breath fresh and your oral health on track. If you are unsure which type of mouth rinse will be best for you, feel free to contact us for more information on mouthwashes!

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Who is a Liar?

It turns out that a lot of us are liars. A recent survey found that more than a quarter of us admit to lying to our dentist about our flossing habits.

We’ve all been there. We’ve all been in the chair, waiting for the doctor to come in while racking our brains, trying to determine when the last time we actually flossed was. If you come up blank, or simply don’t want to face the floss talk then we lie, and claim that we floss daily.

What we don’t realize is that these lies are seriously affecting our oral health. We are underestimating the importance of flossing in relation to gum health every time we lie about our routine. Failing to floss causes gum disease and tooth decay.

By fessing up to your dentist, they can keep their eyes peeled for problems with your gums. Gum disease is treatable, but it is most treatable when caught early.

Next time you are in the dentist’s chair, be honest about your oral health routine. Brushing only cleans three of the five surfaces of your teeth, so when your dentist reads you the riot act about not flossing regularly, you should probably listen.

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3 Tricks Dentists Use To Put You At Ease

Dental visits can often induce stress and anxiety. However, your comfort is your dentist’s top priority! To help make the experience more pleasant, dentists often use a few tricks to help patients feel at ease in the dentist chair.

1. Talking when they have tools in your mouth

Ever wondered why dentists will make conversation while your mouth is stuffed full of cotton or other instruments? Perhaps you’ve had a local anesthetic and part of your mouth is too numb to form words clearly?

Well, this is an age old trick designed to distract the patient from all the poking and prodding otherwise going on during a dental procedure. This helps the patient take their mind off the tiny details of a dental exam.

2. Covering the tools

The sight of a needle can certainly induce anxiety in any patient. Therefore, dentists and dental assistants will generally keep tools and anesthetics out of sight of patients, especially children.

3. Having a fish tank or other relaxing things in the office

Plenty of things found in a dental office are designed to keep patients at ease. If you’ve seen Finding Nemo, you may remember the fish tank in the dentist’s office. Fish tanks are a prime example of dentists having relaxing things that contributes to a comfortable environment. The flowing water is generally calming, which helps to relax patients before they even sit down in the chair.

Other common threads amongst many practices also include playing relaxing music and having soft office decor, both of which can have a soothing effect on patients.

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Attention Animal Lovers: Your Pet’s Teeth Also Matters

Pets need dental attention too! While your general dentist is probably not qualified to take a peek in your dog’s mouth, that doesn’t mean that you should let your pet skip regular dental visits.

Next time your pet goes to the vet, make sure that they check their teeth. Your pet can suffer from bleeding or swollen gums and plaque buildup if they do not receive a regular brushing.

Picking up a doggy toothbrush and doggy toothpaste can also help your pup stay healthy. Brushing their teeth will help clear away plaque and tartar, saving your pet from oral pain. You can also add a water additive to their bowl which can help break down plaque and reduce further plaque formation.

Next time you are at a pet store, look for tools that will help you keep your pet’s mouth clean and healthy.

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The Science of Growing Teeth: Stem cell therapy reveals limitless possibilities

If a patient has lost multiple teeth, whether from gum disease, a sports-related incident, or a car accident, severe trauma to the mouth can require lengthy and extremely costly procedures. The current treatment of choice-dental implants-is effective for even the most serious cases. However, sufferers may have an unprecedented option for recovery with stem cell therapy.

Stem cell research is developing in a new direction. Recent research shows that it’s possible for teeth to be regrown from the mouth’s own stem cells, making treatment much safer and quicker than ever before.

In the not-so-far-off future, stem cells already resident in the mouth can be used to repair and even regrow teeth. This ability to regenerate tooth tissue may even reduce or eliminate the need for root canals. Using local stem cells has the advantage of speeding up the process of recovery over using donor stem cells as well as minimizing the amount of pain experienced.

The beginning stages of this research brings doctors one step closer to creating a new option for tooth restoration and replacement.

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