Wednesday, January 29, 2014

All You Need to Know About Gum Disease

Andrew Greenberger, DMD, a participating Delta Dental dentist, explains periodontal (gum) disease -- the causes, the symptoms and treatments, and how it can affect overall health.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Avoid These 3 Beverages If You Want Pearly Whites

Have you ever gone out wearing a light color and drank a glass of red wine or another colored beverage? The first thing you start to worry about is an accidental spill. If you are worrying about how your beverage will stain the lightly color outfit you are wearing, do you ever stop to think about it staining your teeth? Your smile is the first thing we see as we meet and greet each other daily. When you have pearly white teeth, your smile seems flawless, but how do you keep them this way throughout the days, months, even years? By simply taking care of your teeth, you can achieve the ultimate results of a beautiful smile. Listed below are the three common beverages you should avoid on a regular basis to keep those pearly whites sparkling.

1. Red Wine is the number one beverage that will stain your teeth. Imagine spilling a glass of red wine on something white. It is so hard to get the stain out. You basically have to get it professionally dry-cleaned to help with the stain removal. Now, imagine what it does to your pearly whites. If you want to enjoy a glass of red wine, take a second and use the restroom to swish a little water in your mouth. This will help to rinse out the staining agents and save you the trouble later.

2. Black Tea can be dangerous to your white teeth as well. Black tea is enriched with chromogen (a substance that can be converted to a dye when oxidized), but low in tannin (yellowish to light brown amorphous masses that form on the teeth). Meaning your Earl Grey can be harsher on your teeth than coffee due to the fact that your teeth are actually being dyed. Black tea can be yummy on a rainy day, but follow up with a tooth brush to brush away the dye that is left behind on your teeth.

3. Cola can be one of the hardest drinks for most Americans to avoid, but it does contribute to teeth staining. Cola and additional soft drinks are acidic and chromogen based, which will soften your enamel, then stain. Try sipping through a straw to help keep the beverages from being in direct contact with your teeth. If you happen to be in the mood for a little taste, try limiting the amount to not only keep your teeth shining brightly, but to keep them strong and flawless over the next several years.

Red wine, black tea, and cola's are definitely among the popular beverages that are consumed on a daily basis by Americans. Though these can cause teeth staining and enamel softening, there are a few things we can do to help protect our pearly whites. Rinsing your mouth with water, sipping through a straw, brushing your teeth after a drink, and even swallowing promptly can all help to keep these yummy staining beverages away from our teeth. Like I said before, your smile is one of the first things that stand out on a daily basis as we meet and greet. Take the time to keep it flawless. By the way if you just can't stay away from food and drink that stain, Professional tooth whitening systems are available that really do the trick. We even have whitening pen available to carry in your purse or pocket to touch up those purple teeth right after a drink of red wine.

To learn more about dental cleaning visit us our site, dentist alpharetta ga
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Thursday, January 23, 2014

Stress Bites: How Our Anxieties Can Be Linked to Oral Health

A healthy set of teeth and gums can give us plenty to smile about, but even proper oral care may not be enough to prevent some dental damage occurring if you suffer from emotional stress.

A build-up of anxieties and pressures during the day can manifest into bad habits at night, wreaking havoc on our teeth, experts warn. Worst of all, the damage to your teeth may be happening while you're not even conscious.

Here are some ways stress can take a toll on oral health:

Teeth Grinding

Amid the economic downturn in 2009, dentists reported a spike in the number of patients they were seeing with thinning enamel and chips in their teeth. The trend was attributed to people fretting about their jobs, finances or personal relationships who were grinding their teeth as they slept.

Left untreated, the condition known as bruxism - the gnashing of teeth and clenching of the jaw - can turn into dental fractures or even occlusal trauma, signified by teeth that are misaligned or soreness when clamped down. Continued grinding can also cause headaches.

It's not just painful; it can be costly. Getting veneers or crowns to repair teeth after they've been worn away from grinding can cost hundreds of dollars per tooth. While hard to cure, one solution to managing bruxism is to wear a tooth guard while sleeping. Some medications or cognitive therapy may also help.

Gum Diseases

Oral health is also about our gums, and the Academy of General Dentistry has also already linked emotional woes to our susceptibility to developing gum diseases. That's because stress weakens the immune system, which would normally ward off bacteria that leads to periodontal disease.
A 2007 study published in the Journal of Periodontology also found a strong correlation between gingivitis - the inflammation of gums - and emotional stress.

Mouth Ulcers

They're painful and common, and experts believe stress is a major cause of painful blisters like cold sores and canker sores. Repeated stress-induced habits such as biting lips or gums can cause abrasions leading to the sores.
For a home remedy, gargling with salt water can often help. Canker sores develop inside the mouth, whereas cold sores tend to develop outside the mouth on the lips.

Poor Diet and Neglectful Oral Hygiene

It's not uncommon for people faced with high-pressure situation to turn to junk foods and sticky, sugary snacks. But those products are more likely to lead to tooth decay and bacteria that cause cavities. Stay-alert beverages like sodas and caffeinated drinks can cause tooth decay and dehydration. Water is the best way to keep the mouth moist and gums soft, aiding with the production of saliva, a protective fluid.

Stress can also drain a person's energy, and they may neglect to brush or floss as regularly, according to a 2005 study of university students in the British Journal of Health Psychology. Significantly higher rates of plaque and gingivitis were found among students who had their teeth cleaned during a period when they were cramming for a major academic exam.

A healthy lifestyle enthusiast, F.R. writes about keeping our bodies and oral health in prime condition. Look for similar topics from a top Arlington (TX) dentist - team dentist for the Texas Rangers. His specialty is creating beautiful, healthy smiles using stress-free care in a comfortable environment, so consider visiting this dentist in Arlington, Texas.
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Monday, January 20, 2014

Causes of Tooth Decay and How to Prevent It

Tooth decay is decidedly unpleasant, and may be caused by plaque buildup, cavities and gum disease that can result from diet choices and poor dental care. It can affect people at any age, even beginning in childhood. Far from being confined to the mouth, the repercussions of insufficient dental hygiene can contribute to many different health problems, from heart disease to mental illness.

Luckily, there are many things you can do at home to help prevent decay:

  • Use the proper toothbrush, and switch to a new brush about every three months. There are dozens of styles of toothbrush available on the market, and some will be better suited to your needs than others. Ask your dental hygienist for more information.
  • Your dentist should also give you a refresher course on proper brushing technique - a good angle is about 45 degrees.
  • Make sure you're taking about four minutes- around the length of a song on the radio- to brush your teeth. A lot of people rush through their brushing routine, even if they are brushing twice a day.
  • Floss at least once a day, and make sure to get in to all those little crevices your toothbrush may not be able to reach. This is another practice a lot of people rush through or skip all together, so ask your dentist for tips.
  • Mouthwash is another good step - once or twice a day is enough, preferably with an alcohol-free mouthwash that includes fluoride, like Act! Having fluoride in your mouthwash is especially important if your city doesn't include fluoride in the tap water. Your eating habits also have a lot to do with the state of your teeth. Even if you're otherwise following all the proper guidelines for dental hygiene, certain foods, beverages and practices can negatively affect the health of your teeth.
  • Most people know, but it's worth repeating - sugar is a huge detriment to dental health. Without a doubt, consuming sugary foods and drinks on a regular basis leads to a higher instance of tooth decay. Even if you don't think your diet contains much sugar, you may be surprised if you check the nutritional content of the foods you eat. A lot of pre-prepared or boxed food is sweetened; many people consume more sugar than they think.
  • Dark beverages like red wine and coffee contribute to surface stains, so stay away from these drinks if you're concerned about keeping your smile white.
  • Along the same lines, cigarette smoking is a huge contributor to tooth decay and gum disease - just one more reason to quit.

However, all these preventative measures don't remove the necessity for regular dental cleanings. If it seems unpleasant or too expensive, remember that catching issues like gum disease and tooth decay early on will make them much easier and less expensive to deal with in the long run. If you flat-out can't afford to see a regular dentist, consider a local dental school- they are always in need of patients, and your appointment will be supervised by an experienced dentist.

Usually, you will only need to pay the cost of supplies and materials used during the visit. Lastly, keep in mind that some people will naturally retain more bacteria and build up more plaque than others, and may require regular deep cleanings as opposed to a shorter visit and quick surface polish.

A healthy lifestyle enthusiast, F.R. writes about keeping our bodies and oral health in prime condition. Look for similar topics from a top Arlington (TX) dentist - team dentist for the Texas Rangers. His specialty is creating beautiful, healthy smiles using stress-free care in a comfortable environment, so consider visiting this dentist in Arlington, Texas.
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Friday, January 17, 2014

Are You Doing Everything You Can to Fight Cavities?

Tooth decay and cavities lead to more than just expensive dental visits- they can lead to a whole list of health problems. Luckily, there are many simple ways you can combat cavities every day. Ask yourself these ten questions to make sure you're doing everything you can to avoid tooth decay.

Do you suffer from dry mouth?

Chronic dry mouth, or Xerostomia, can be caused by dehydration, anxiety, smoking, certain medications, or diseases that damage the salivary glands. Saliva is your body's natural method of keeping your teeth clean, so when there's not enough present, cavities can occur more easily. Discovering the underlying cause of your dry mouth will help you to avoid future complications.

Do you keep gum handy?

Chewing sugarless gum after meals helps to stimulate the salivary glands, producing more saliva to wash away food particles that may otherwise stick around feed bacteria.

Do you use a mouthwash?

Mouthwash is often overlooked as an important step in our daily dental routine. After brushing and flossing, use a mouthwash once or twice a day to access all the tiny nooks and crannies that your toothbrush and floss can't get to. Don't rinse your mouth out with water after using your mouthwash, and avoid food and drinks for about half an hour.

Are you getting enough fluoride?

Fluoride helps strengthen teeth and reduces bacteria's ability to produce the acid which causes tooth decay. Many cities in the US include fluoride in the tap water, but if your city doesn't or you don't drink tap water, make sure your toothpaste contains fluoride.

Have you considered sealants?

Many people receive sealants on their back molars as children. A thin, durable plastic covering is applied over the tooth, then hardens and bonds to the enamel to keep food and bacteria out of the creases in those teeth. These sealants can last for several years, and your dentist can reapply them when necessary. Even if you didn't get sealants as a child or teen, they can be helpful to cavity-prone adults as well.

Are you seeing your dentist on a regular basis?

Your bi-annual dentist visit is one of your most powerful weapons against tooth decay. Dentists can detect conditions developing that you may not notice, and will be able to catch cavities early if you have them. Early detection makes decay and other problems much easier to deal with.

Do you rinse after eating?

While it's not always practical to brush after every meal, one simple thing you can do to help fight cavities is to rinse your mouth with water after eating. A thorough water rinse will help dislodge any food particles or residue from your meal.

Do you keep snacking to a minimum?

Every time you eat, your teeth are exposed to the carbohydrates that bacteria use to produce acid, which eats away at tooth enamel. Snacking all day long exposes your teeth to a constant source of decay-causing sugars and carbohydrates, especially if you're snacking on sweet foods. If you are going to eat desserts or sugary snacks, try to have those sweet treats at meal time so that your post-meal brushing and/or rinsing keeps bacteria at bay.

Are you watching your diet?

While most people know that sugary foods contribute to cavities, studies have shown that foods high in refined carbohydrates, such as bread or crackers made with white flour, make your teeth more prone to decay as well. Concentrate on buying whole, fresh fruits and vegetables, not frozen or canned, and stick to whole-grain bread products when possible.

Are you brushing and flossing regularly?

Last but certainly not least, brushing and flossing are among the most important things you can do on a daily basis to help fight tooth decay. It's best to brush and floss each morning and night, and brush after meals whenever you can.

A healthy lifestyle enthusiast, F.R. writes about keeping our bodies and oral health in prime condition. Look for similar topics from a top dentist in Arlington - team dentist for the Texas Rangers. His specialty is creating beautiful, healthy smiles using stress-free care and a comfortable environment in his Arlington dentistry.
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Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Saliva: It's More Important Than You Think

Andrew Greenberger, DMD, a participating Delta Dental dentist, explains the vital role saliva plays in oral health, the causes of dry mouth, and tips on what you can do to ease dry mouth symptoms.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Keeping Healthy Teeth As You Grow Older

Proper dental care is important at any age, but as you get older, your lifestyle and history of dental hygiene really starts to have an impact on oral health. In addition, with old age often come a myriad of health problems which can complicate dental care and put you at higher risk for certain conditions. A few issues to watch out for as you age include:

· Dry mouth, which can be caused by numerous medications or other health problems. Aside from being annoying in and of itself, a lack of saliva deprives your mouth of its natural weapon against debris and bacteria.

· Tooth decay can be caused by dry mouth, unhealthy diet, or an inability to brush/floss properly. Any small signs of decay that you may have ignored in earlier life are likely to worsen as you get older.

· Gum disease in the elderly often stems from loss in dexterity which makes it more difficult to brush and floss.

· Cheilosis and stomatitis are infections of the mouth commonly caused by ill-fitting dentures. Even at an advanced age, the teeth and jaw can change shape slightly over time, meaning dentures that fit for a while may not always feel so comfortable.

· Oral cancers, as with most cancers, have a higher occurrence rate in older people. Be on the lookout for red or white patches on the soft tissues of your mouth, sores that won't heal, difficulty swallowing, and unexplained loose teeth.

While not a physical symptom, a lack of access to affordable dental care causes many problems for elderly people as well. If you're living on a fixed income or have difficulty arranging transportation to the dentist, it may be tempting to skip your regularly scheduled checkups. However, this can prove more costly in the long run as your dentist can catch many of the above conditions before they become severe and need expensive and/or invasive treatment.

What can you do?

Fortunately, there are many steps you can take as you grow older to help keep your teeth and gums as healthy as can be.

· Try an electric toothbrush if it's become too hard to hold a regular toothbrush and/or maneuver it around your mouth. An electric brush can provide just as much cleaning power as a regular brush, and will do a lot of the scrubbing work for you.

· Stop smoking if you've taken up the habit at some point. The older you get, the less resilient your mouth's tissues become to toxins like cigarette smoke.

· Use a flossing tool to help you reach all the nooks and crannies in your mouth if you have a difficult time holding regular floss. There are many flossers available on the market, and your dentist can help recommend one that suits your needs.

· Clean your dentures daily if you wear them; even though they're artificial teeth, any debris or bacteria that remain on dentures can inflame or infect your mouth tissues if not taken care of. It's also recommended to remove dentures at night.

· See your dentist regularly. Even though it can be a hassle and may seem like an unpleasant task, regular dental visits are even more important as you grow older to ensure your teeth stay in good shape as long as possible.

A healthy lifestyle enthusiast, F.R. writes about keeping our bodies and oral health in prime condition. Look for similar topics from a top Arlington (TX) dentist - team dentist for the Texas Rangers. His specialty is creating beautiful, healthy smiles using stress-free care in a comfortable environment, so consider visiting this dentist in Arlington, Texas.
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Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Dietary Habits for a Healthy Mouth

You know how important a good diet is to your overall health, but did you know that what you eat can impact your dental health just as much as your hygiene habits do? Certain foods have cleaning or strengthening properties for gums and teeth, while others damage enamel and enhance bacteria production. Here's a quick rundown of the most important foods to seek out, and those to stay away from.

Foods to eat:

-High-calcium foods- dairy items are great sources of calcium, but you can also get a good dose from kale, collard greens, soy beans, salmon and sardines. Don't forget that without healthy levels of vitamin D, your body can't properly process vitamin C, so add foods like tuna, egg yolks, and vitamin-fortified foods like soy milk and cereal to your diet. Your body can also produce vitamin D from absorbed sunlight- don't overdo it, but spending some time in the sun can help your produce this important vitamin.

-Cheese has recently been shown to help neutralize acids in the mouth as well as forming a temporary protective coating against staining and sugary residue.

-Vitamin C is another essential nutrient to maintaining a healthy mouth. With excellent antioxidant properties, eating a good daily dose of vitamin C can help you avoid gum disease. Look for this vitamin in fruits, particularly carrots, oranges and sweet potatoes. Try to stick with whole fruits as opposed to fruit juices; most fruit juices have heft doses of added sugar and can be quite acidic, which erodes tooth enamel.

-Good news for those with a sweet tooth! Dark chocolate contains healthy, decay-fighting antioxidants. The tannins contained in dark chocolate may also help balance the pH of your mouth, lowering acidity.

-Water- no surprise here, since we all know hydration is essential to good health. However, even the act of drinking water helps rinse away harmful bacteria before they get a chance to start producing harmful acid.

-Other helpful beverages are green and black teas. These teas contain antioxidants which prevent free radicals from damaging healthy cells in your mouth. Some studies have also shown that black tea prevents bacteria from multiplying and producing acid. However, black tea can also have a staining effect if you drink it regularly, so remember to brush your teeth after a glass.

-Fruits and vegetables have all kinds of nutritional benefits, but crunchy, fibrous fruits and veggies can also help clean your teeth naturally. Broccoli, carrots, and apples all have a sort of scrubbing effect on the teeth, removing debris before it gets the chance to start feeding bacteria.

Foods to be wary of:

-You probably already know that sugary foods have a negative effect on your teeth- things like candy, ice cream, fruit juice and blended coffee drinks often contain more sugar than any other ingredient, though it's possible to find sugar-free versions of most items you enjoy. Moreover, sticky candies like caramels or hard candy tend to sit in the mouth for a long period of time, extending the amount of time your teeth are exposed to sugary residue.

-You may not realize that bacteria process starchy foods in much the same way as sugar, meaning it's easily converted to enamel-eroding acid. This includes many cereals, bread, potatoes, rice and grains. However, unlike candy and ice cream, many of these foods have positive health benefits as well, so you shouldn't cut them out altogether. Just don't go overboard on the starches, and make sure to brush your teeth after a starchy meal.

A healthy lifestyle enthusiast, F.R. writes about keeping our bodies and oral health in prime condition. Look for similar topics from a top dentist in Arlington - team dentist for the Texas Rangers. His specialty is creating beautiful, healthy smiles using stress-free care and a comfortable environment in his Arlington dental office.
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Sunday, January 5, 2014

Four Dental Health Myths You Can Put to Bed

Many health myths are so engrained in to our minds we don't think twice about them. Some are harmless- for instance, you don't really need to wait an hour after eating to go swimming, but it doesn't hurt you to wait- while some can actually cause harm. Here are a few commonly held beliefs about dental health, and the reasons why you may want to reconsider them.

You should always brush your teeth after a meal.

You should brush after a meal- but not right away, especially if you've consumed acidic or sugary foods like wine or dessert. Many foods can actually cause your enamel, the tough outer layer of your teeth, to temporarily weaken or soften. An immediate brushing can do more harm than good by scratching softened enamel and giving bacteria a chance to burrow deeper in to your teeth. The 'buffing' effect of your toothbrush bristles can also make it much easier for stains to penetrate and attach themselves to teeth. Ideally, give your mouth a good rinsing with water after a meal, then wait about 30 minutes before brushing to give your enamel a chance to strengthen itself.

Chewing gum will rot your teeth.

If you're chewing the sugary stuff, it can certainly harm your dental health- but sugar-free gum can actually be helpful in preventing stains, decay and/or gum disease, especially when chewed after a meal. Chewing gum helps stimulate your saliva glands, and saliva is your body's natural defense against stains and decay-causing bacteria. Increased saliva flow after eating will help to rinse away any debris or small particles remaining from your meal. Some brands of gum have actually proven effective enough at fighting cavities, gum disease and/or other dental issues that they have been stamped with the ADA seal of approval.

Fruit juice is a healthier alternative to soda.

You'd think that anything with 'fruit' in the name would have more health benefits than soda, but a more appropriate name for many 'juices' on the market today would be 'fruit flavored beverage.' Many contain very little real fruit juice, and the sugar content is almost as high as that of soda; an eight-ounce glass of typical grocery store orange juice contains about eight teaspoons of sugar, while a typical can of soda contains around ten. What's more, both of these beverages contain processed sugars as opposed to the natural sugars found in actual fruit. A substance also found in soft drinks called citric acid gives many fruit juices their tangy or citrus flavor; acid is extremely harmful to teeth and is a key culprit in the destruction of protective enamel. Look to real, whole fruits to get your daily serving of nutrients, and stick to water to quench your thirst.

Electric toothbrushes are more effective than manual ones.

As long as you're brushing for the proper amount of time and with good technique, you can get a satisfactory cleaning from either a manual or an electric toothbrush. When it comes to cost and practicality, the good old manual toothbrush beats out the electric every time- it's cheaper, more portable and can be used anywhere. However, for adults who have dexterity problems resulting from arthritis or old age, an electric toothbrush may be easier to use than a manual brush. More important than the electric vs. manual argument is knowing how to maintain your toothbrush and when to replace it- always rinse it thoroughly after use, and replace your brush every couple of months, or when the bristles begin to look frayed.

A healthy lifestyle enthusiast, F.R. writes about keeping our bodies and oral health in prime condition. Look for similar topics from a top Arlington dentist - team dentist for the Texas Rangers. His specialty is creating beautiful, healthy smiles using stress-free care in a comfortable environment, so consider visiting this dentist in Arlington, Texas.
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Thursday, January 2, 2014

Protecting Your Family From Childhood Tooth Decay

We always want to do the best we can when it comes to our family's health, but the amount of misinformation floating around out there sometimes makes it difficult to know the correct course of action to take. The occurrence of tooth decay in very young children has increased over the last several years, at least partially due to the prevalence of fruit juices and other sweet drinks being consumed by babies and toddlers, as well as infrequency of dental visits in the first few years of life.

Since baby teeth are replaced, why is early decay so detrimental?

Many people are under the impression that baby teeth aren't all that important to a child's development, since they eventually fall out and are replaced. In fact, decay and improper development of the baby teeth can have serious consequences for the health of adult teeth. Baby teeth (or milk teeth, as they are sometimes called) hold the space required for future adult teeth. Each baby tooth stays in place until the permanent tooth underneath is developed and ready to grow in. When a baby tooth becomes decayed and/or structurally damaged, the surrounding teeth can press in to the space left free by the decaying tooth or teeth. This can mean that the adult teeth grow out of place, possibly resulting in expensive orthodontic work.

Is fruit juice healthy for children?

Most fruit juices carry a hefty dose of added sugar- many carry just as much in a typical serving as a can of soda. Fruit juices also tend to be highly acidic; besides fruit being acidic itself, many juices have citric acid added to give a tangy flavor. Sugar and acid are two of the biggest culprits when it comes to tooth decay at any age. Even juices that say 'no sugar added' still carry all the sugar content of the fruit itself.

If you want to give your child fruit juices, allow them only at meals or during a limited amount of time during the day. It's much better for teeth to be exposed to sugar and acidity for a short burst of time, rather than at intervals throughout the day.

Baby bottle tooth decay, or baby bottle mouth, is a syndrome that occurs in children who carry a bottle or spill-proof cup and sip on beverages all day and/or take a bottle to bed or naptime. Usually affecting the top upper teeth, baby bottle tooth decay happens when the front teeth are constantly bombarded with sugary beverages and become decayed and worn. Decay and improper development of the baby teeth can have serious consequences for the health of adult teeth.

What else puts a child at risk for early tooth decay?

Many children don't have their first dental appointment until some or all of their teeth have grown in- often this is around two, and research indicates that in some areas of the country, up to twenty-five percent of kindergarten-age children have yet to see a dentist. The fact is that a baby should see a dentist when his or her first tooth grows in. Your dentist can check to make sure that the other teeth are in good shape and will be shortly following the first, as well as giving you some helpful tips on caring for your baby's teeth while they are growing.

A healthy lifestyle enthusiast, F.R. writes about keeping our bodies and oral health in prime condition. Look for similar topics from a top dentist in Arlington - team dentist for the Texas Rangers. His specialty is creating beautiful, healthy smiles using stress-free care and a comfortable environment in his Arlington dental office.
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