Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Oral Care Considerations For Teens

Teenage is the period of transition from childhood to adulthood. During this period, teenagers generally worry about third molars, facial appearance, braces, and bad breath. School activities, sports, and a lot of junk foods result in compromised dental care, which usually leads to tooth decay, cavities, and other dental problems.

The best way for teens to have a healthy smile is to stick to the best oral hygiene habits developed during childhood. Here are a few tips to help you instill ideal oral hygiene habits.

  • Encourage your kid to take good care of their teeth. It would mean brushing teeth at least twice a day and flossing daily. Teenagers are more concerned about how they look. You can make your kids understand that bad oral habits can result in bad breath, stained teeth, and cavities, all of which contribute to bad looks.
  • You are going to have to be a role model. If you want your kids to take care of their teeth for the rest of their lives, you will need to practice good oral hygiene in front of them.
  • Make sure that you never run short on dental care supplies. Soft toothbrushes, dental floss, fluoride toothpaste, and mouthwash should always be there on the washroom shelf. Keep these supplies in your children's easy access.
  • Encourage your kids to eat healthy foods, such as fruits and vegetables, instead of junk foods.
  • Discuss with your kids the impact of smoking and other non-healthy activities on oral and overall health. Kids usually start smoking or get oral piercing under social pressure. Empowering them with the knowledge of good and bad can help them stick to good habits only.

Many teens have to get braces or have their wisdom teeth removed. Some undergo these procedures due to dental problems caused by impacted or misaligned teeth, while some do the same to prevent any problems in the future.

Here is what you may want to discuss with your teeth.

  • The purpose of braces is not just a straight smile. With your teeth straightened, you can ensure their hygiene in a much better way. The alignment of teeth alleviates the risk of tooth chipping.
  • The most common reason you may have to get your wisdom teeth or third molars removed is the lack of room, which generally results in impaction and other resultant issues.
  • Bad breath is a product of harmful bacteria that reside on the tongue. A simple change in oral care habits can freshen up the breath. Good oral hygiene includes brushing your tongue when you brush your teeth.
  • It is good to rely on a good oral hygiene routine to whiten the teeth. It might mean using a whitening toothpaste, mouthwashes, and specialized toothbrushes. If you must get your teeth whitened, get it done professionally.
  • The use of tobacco products can lead to certain types of cancers, bad breath, gum disease, teeth staining, and various other oral and overall health issues.
  • Oral piercing serves no good because it can have adverse effects on lips, tongue, and cheeks. These pieces of metal can cause several other oral health problems.

If you want your kid to have a nice and healthy smile, you must discuss these factors with him in a friendly environment. The best way is to be a counselor to your child.

Sunday, February 18, 2018

The Morning Drink That is Hurting Your Teeth

One of my favorite things to do is wake up happy.  The issue is that it is really hard to do in reality and most of us in the United States end up working out different ways to boost our morning energy.  So how do most mornings start for the average American adult? It is safe to say that most adults start the day off with a cup or five of their favorite type of coffee.  Most coffee shops are still thriving due to the massive amount of coffee that is consumed on a daily basis.  Even with the pandemic, this is the one thing that most people cannot give up.  Many people are drinking 3 or more cups of coffee every single day.  With all the coffee being consumed lots of people are concerned with what this drink is actually doing to their health.  Specifically, teeth are a big issue when it comes to coffee and health there are some things we need to talk about.

Now Coffee is definitely not all bad and it has been shown that coffee can actually have some health benefits.  Generally, it gets the stigma being the major reason that staining teeth happens and causing nothing but issues in the long run.  Coffee has been shown in studies to actually fight tooth decay.  That is really surprising and it even shocks me. Coffee through studies actually fights tooth decay.  This is a great positive note because at the end that can allow you to keep your teeth longer and not have nearly as many needed dentist visits.  This is something that I would bring up with your dentist and see what works well for you.

But we all know that on the flip side of the spectrum coffee is actually acidic and can really eat away at your teeth if you let it.  The acid in a way kills the bacteria that is in your mouth which does help fight tooth decay, but the extra acid can also damage your dental health as well.  It has been noted that eating while having coffee, especially food that has extra fiber in it is a way to mitigate the negative effects.  So if you have coffee in the morning try to drink it when you are eating breakfast.  Or like many Americans, breakfast is no longer a part of their diet, so if you have it later in the day or mid-morning try to have a small snack with it. There are simply some things you should look out for.

There is one other thing you should think about when drinking coffee and that is that it can really stain your teeth.  Many people notice that their teeth turn yellow the more they drink coffee.  This is because the dark pigments in coffee actually attach to the enamel in your teeth and do turn it yellow over time. Not even adding cream to your coffee will help with the yellowing effect either.  Just because the coffee looks brighter does not mean the pigments are still not in the coffee. So don’t fall for the old wives' tale about cream whitening or mitigating the yellowing of coffee staining. It is smart to drink some water after drinking coffee though. Rinsing your mouth will help eliminate the dark pigments so keep on rinsing.  

Monday, November 27, 2017

Fighting Effects of Dry Mouth

So, you are experiencing Dry Mouth on a number of occasions and you are wondering what is the cause, here is what you need to know. DryMouth is a condition that is not uncommon. It can happen because you are nervous, under stress or upset. However, if your situation persists and become chronic, it could be a sign of a medical problem.


Dry Mouth is a condition whereby the saliva gland does not produce a sufficient amount of saliva to rinse away debris and remineralize the teeth enamel. Lack of saliva can damage the enamel of your teeth, and your teeth will lack the protection needed to resist acid attacks. Saliva protect your teeth from cavities and tooth decay, prevent infections, help digest food and help you swallow and chew.

Saliva is also needed to assist in the ability to talk and eat comfortably. An adequate amount of saliva contains enzymes that break down food to make it easy to digest.

Severe Dry Mouth can lead to serious dental issues. However knowing the causes, the symptoms, and the remedies of Dry Mouth you can minimize discomforts and effectively treat the condition.

There are several reasons why your salivary gland does not function properly. Some of the causes include:

Ageing: The elderly tend to suffer Dry Mouth symptoms.

Smoking: Many cigar, pipe and cigarette smokers suffer Dry Mouth symptoms.

Malfunction of the salivary glands: If your neck or head are exposed to radiation from cancer treatments, your salivary glands can be affected. The saliva loss effects can be partial, total, temporarily or permanently.

Medication side effects: There are more than 400 medicines available that can cause Dry Mouth. These medications include decongestants, diuretics, pain killers, antihistamines and depression and high blood pressure medication.

Diseases: Diseases like Parkinson's disease, Hodgkin's, HIV/AIDS, Sjogren's syndrome and diabetes can cause Dry Mouth.

Chemotherapy drugs: Drugs used for chemotherapy can make your saliva thick, causing a dry sensation in your Mouth.

Menopause: A change in hormone levels can affect the salivary glands, often leaving menopausal and post-menopausal women with a persistent feeling of dry Mouth.


Dry Mouth is uncomfortable, and it increases the risk of tooth decay and cavities. Some of the symptoms include:

-Bad Breath

-Sore or dry throat

-Chapped or crack lips

-Mouth sore

-A change in the sense of taste

-Mouth feeling sticky

-Sandpaper, dry sensation in your Mouth

-Trouble swallowing


While sipping water can temporarily ease symptoms, it does not address the problem of saliva production. Neither does sucking on lozenges, which can contribute to your Mouth health and manage your condition.


Some lozenges, however, can be effective, if they contain Xylitol, which is a sugar substitute and are sugar-free. Clinical studies show Xylitol can stimulate the flow of saliva and prevent cavities and tooth decay. Other studies show that the sucking motion, which works the chewing muscles and the prolonged flavor of lozenges, can boost saliva production.



Alternative Remedies



There are other Dry Mouth coping techniques that are recommended by the Cleveland Clinic. These techniques include:


-Suck on ice chips

-Drink water frequently

-Chew sugar-free gum that contains Xylitol

-Avoid dry, salty and sugary drinks and food

-Limit caffeine intake and alcoholic beverages

-Quit smoking

-Maintain good oral habits


Consult with your dentist or healthcare provider if you are experiencing the above symptoms. Knowing the cause and the symptoms can help you find a treatment that is best for you.


Sunday, February 12, 2017

To Scope or not to Scope?

There are some things in life that are just going to be different between people.  When you end up getting married or living with a spouse you will find that your upbringings are different.  For my life I have found that when it comes to bathroom taste we are different.  It has been many years since I got married and the question still rages on between my wife and I.  Is mouthwash an important part of your dental hygiene? Now, in the beginning I originally only used mouthwash because it made my breath smell better and I was under the impression that it helped my breath smell good in the morning.  It has been many years and I am pretty sure that it doesn't’ really have that much of an effect on my breath. So I went to look into what dentists say about it and if its really worth the cost and extra time to implement it into my nightly routine. Because it does cost money and if its just for show I don't have time for that anymore. 

Halitosis is a little more serious than what mouthwash can actually cure. It turns out that mouthwash does not help bad breath.  In fact, halitosis is the main cause of bad breath and the fact that mouthwash does kill the bacteria in your mouth does temporarily help with your breath, it will still not help in the morning. There is also the possibility that bad breath can come from gastroesophageal issues which is much worse than just simply having bad breath. There is a lot more to the issue than scope being an answer.

But I still liked the idea of giving my mouth an extra kick of help.  Even knowing it didn’t help with the reason I wanted to use it in the first place I had to know if there were other benefits to it.  It turns out that mouthwash does actually help prevent lots of other mouth issues.  It is a great preventative for gum disease and helps eliminate unwanted bacteria that can build up and cause plaque. The best part in my book is that it can build up tooth enamel and actually prevent tooth decay.  I would like to have my teeth long into my old years so this is a big deal to me. 

We all know that you should brush.  I also learned that brushing your teeth is still very important. Some people use mouthwash as  a brushing alternative and that is simply a mistake.  The plaque and food residue that does build up in your mouth and on your teeth is still in need of physical brushing to help eliminate it. So I still think it is important for me to use it on a daily basis so my teeth can stay as healthy as possible for as long as possible.  

Don't just stick with the tv name brand.  Yes, I still do it. But there are lots of different kinds of mouth washes and some are better in some areas than others.  It looked like some were antibacterial in nature and were more important for quickly getting rid of bad breath for a bit and killing plaque.  There are also some that provide more fluoride and are better at keeping your teeth and gums from gum disease.  Use what works best for you. 

Friday, December 9, 2016

Dental Tips for the Holidays

The cooler weather always brings about some of the best times of the year for most Americans.  What this usually signifies is that the summer is coming to an end and that our holiday season is upon us.  We are now going to be going through the fun times of family get-togethers, work parties, and Friendsgiving.  The joy of these times is great, but there are some downfalls of the extra sweets and treats that are usually consumed during this time of year.  The downfall of this is not only possible weight gain but really dental hygiene problems.  The attack our teeth take during this time of year is usually 3 to 4 times worse than any other time of the year.  That is simply because of the nature of the average American during this time and that we usually indulge more in yummy seasonal treats rather than those are drinks or snacks during this time of year.  It is simply natural to go to parties and be with more people at gatherings where food and drinks are normally present.  So I wanted to lay a few tips out for this year to help keep your teeth healthier and your dental bills lower in the coming year.


There is a simple way to lower the excess sugar you are putting on your teeth and allowing to eat away at your health.  The easiest and hardest thing to do is simply to not indulge in all the extra holiday treats this year.  You can substitute veggies and water for most of the holiday platters that you would be bringing or could be eating.  This is a great thing to do if you are able to do it.  In my own experience, I truly enjoy the seasonal treats and drinks.  But what I wanted to do and think most of us should do is consciously lower our normal consumption.  We should strive to save our dental health a little by simply eat and drinking less and substituting good things for our body instead of all the sweets.


The next thing that is great to do during this time of year is to actually keep up with your brushing routine or add in an extra brushing.  The American Dental Association suggests that we brush our teeth twice a day for two minutes on each brushing.  This is something that we all need to make sure that we are doing and us9ing a good protective fluoride toothpaste to protect our teeth.  If you are able to do it, then try and add a third brushing in as well.  I think that nothing is better than being proactive in our healthcare.  The best way to avoid getting extra visits to the dentist and paying for cavities and fillings is to keep them from happening.  So make sure you are brushing your teeth and you may need a little help.


I think the small disposable toothbrushes that already have pasted in them are amazing for this time of year.  The lack of time and extra travel that we have is usually a hindrance to dental hygiene during this time of year. But having a mobile individually packaged toothbrush that fits into the smallest of pockets allows you to simply brush in teh bathroom and keep going at the party.