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Expert Dental Tips

Expert Dental Tips: 

1. Regular dental exams are a necessary part of your total health care regime. Infection and bacteria in the mouth can affect the health of your entire body. Semi-annual check ups will monitor tooth decay, gum disease and early detection of oral cancer. Preventing and treating gum disease in its early stages are the best ways to keep your smile healthy. Think of good oral care as part of a healthy lifestyle.

2. X-rays are a necessary addition to your dental treatment plan in order to gather pertinent information regarding your oral health. The radiation dose that a person incurs from a series of dental x-rays is significantly less than an airplane flight from NY to LA, indicating the benefits out weigh the risks one my have concerning radiation dosage.

3. Energy drinks and sports drinks have a higher acidity than regular soft drinks and fruit juices, causing irreversible damage to enamel, which is the glossy outer layer of teeth. These drinks have additional citric acid which adds the tartness desired by consumers. For strong, decay-resistant teeth, our bodies need protein, vitamins and minerals (especially calcium, phosphorus and proper levels of fluoride).

4. Do you suffer from headaches, earaches, tenderness of the jaw muscles or dull, aching facial pain? Any of these symptoms may indicate that you are clenching or grinding your teeth in your sleep. The muscles and joints may not function properly, resulting in cycles of pain and spasm. Being fitted for a night-guard may help alleviate these symptoms and can also protect your teeth and the jaw joint.

5. Bleeding gums are not normal! Gums should not bleed upon brushing. If they are, this could be a sign of gingivitis or periodontal disease, which is caused by the bacteria in plaque, a sticky, colorless film that forms on your teeth. The plaque bacteria have toxins that inflame the gums. You should visit your dentist to evaluate your oral health.

Defeating Dental Anxiety:

If you suffer from dental anxiety, you are not alone! It’s been estimated that as many as 20% of Americans avoid going to the dentist due to fear and anxiety. It is often due to a previous traumatic experience at the dentist or embarrassment at having neglected their oral health. Whatever the reason, it’s important to have a discussion with your dentist to let them know what your fears are so you can work together to find strategies that will help lower your anxiety and make it possible to get the treatment you need.

Sleep Apnea

Is your snoring a problem? Do you stop breathing at night? If you have been diagnosed with sleep apnea and are having trouble with CPAP therapy, there is a more comfortable option. You may be a candidate for a clinically proven dental sleep appliance, which fits much like a hard night guard, allowing you a better nights sleep.

How To Improve Your Smile:

Ceramic veneers are a strong, durable and natural looking way to improve your smile. A small amount of enamel is removed from your front teeth to make room for the ceramic covering. Veneers can be used to straighten your smile, close spaces between your teeth or lighten naturally yellow or gray teeth that can’t be whitened by bleaching.

Prevention is always better than treatment. Ask your dentist about a thin protective barrier placed on the chewing surface of your tooth called a sealant. It can put extra power behind your prevention routine.

Tooth Decay

Did you know tooth decay is the most common chronic disease in both children and adults? Follow these simple steps to reduce your risk: brush twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste, floss at least once a day, avoid frequent snacks and sips of sugary drinks and make sure you see your dentist regularly.

Trivia

• Ancient Greeks used pumice, talc, emery, ground alabaster, coral powder and iron rust as dentifrice. Fingers were used as toothbrushes.

• Apollonia – Patron Saint of Dentists

• The myth that George Washington’s dentures were made from wood is untrue. They were actually manufactured from gold, hippopotamus tusk, elephant ivory and human teeth.

• In 1845 pacifiers were made from coral to expedite eruptions of the teeth in children.

• In the early 1980’s, sealants began to be used. Sealants are a plastic material applied to chewing surface to act as barrier providing more protection against decay.

• The Baltimore College of Dental Surgery was founded in 1840 and was the first dental school.

• Cod liver oil was one of the first products to be awarded the ADA seal of acceptance in 1931.

Questions for the expert to answer:
• What age do I start bringing my child to the dentist?
• What is the difference between amalgam (silver) and composite (white) fillings?
• What is the difference between an implant and a bridge?
• How do I know if I have gum disease?
• Why is my cleaning more expensive than my spouse’s?
• How much is too much fluoride?

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