My BEST Dentists Journal


Oral issues associated with tobacco use

The oral changes from tobacco use range from harmless soft tissue changes to a life-threatening oral cancer.

Your dentist is trained to perform an oral examination to detect tobacco use related abnormalities. Some of the more common of these are discussed below:

Smoker’s Melanosis

Smoker’s melanosis is increased tissue pigmentation, or darkening, due to irritation from tobacco smoke. Typically this pigmentation occurs on the gingiva (gums) of the upper and lower front teeth. The amount of pigmentation increases with greater tobacco use, and is more common in females; it occurs in 5.0 – 22% of cigarette and pipe smokers. There is no treatment for smoker’s melanosis; however, tissues typically return to normal color in six to 36 months after quitting smoking.

Periodontal Disease

The evidence is overwhelming that smoking contributes to periodontal disease (see Right) and that continued smoking results in a reduced response to periodontal treatment. There is a greater amount of bone loss around teeth in smokers and individuals who smoke are more likely to lose teeth than nonsmokers. It is reported that more than half of advanced gum disease can be linked to tobacco use.

Nicotinic Stomatitis

In nicotinic stomatitis, the hard palate (roof of the mouth) appears white instead of pink, and numerous, small raised areas with red centers are found throughout the palate (see Left). These red areas are irritated minor salivary glands whose duct openings are inflamed in response to the heat from tobacco products. This lesion is most commonly seen in older male tobacco users who smoke pipes but it also can be found in cigar and cigarette smokers.

There is an increased risk for cancer of the tonsils, posterior mouth, and lungs in individuals who develop nicotinic stomatitis from their tobacco use. However, if the individual stops their tobacco use, the appearance of hard palate typically returns to normal within a few weeks.

Gingival Recession and Tooth AbrasionIn addition to the development of changes to the oral tissues, the use of smokeless tobacco can damage both the gum tissue and the teeth in the area where it is held in the mouth. Smokeless tobacco can result in localized gum recession and the exposed teeth often develop dental decay due the sweetener in smokeless tobacco. Unfortunately, stopping the tobacco use does not reverse the gum problem or tooth decay.

Oral CancerUse of tobacco products is clearly linked to development of oral cancer (see Below). Oral cancers are found primarily in the floor of the mouth (under the tongue), the sides and underside of the tongue, and the soft palate (the back part of the roof of the mouth). The topic of oral cancer in discussed in a separate Patient Information sheet. The most important key to surviving oral cancer is early detection. The importance of your dentist performing a thorough soft tissue examination cannot be overemphasized. The tissue changes in early cancer can be subtle and it is essential for your dentist to perform a through soft tissue examination to detect cancer at an early stage. He or she may want to take a sample of these tissues (biopsy) for diagnosis, or refer you for this procedure. This is the only way to make a diagnosis of oral cancer, and biopsy can also help in determining your long-term outlook.


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Hypercalcemia Teeth: What It Is & Treatment Options

Your body is a complex system with various components working together to keep it performing at its optimum best. The parathyroid hormone (PTH) helps maintain calcium and phosphorus metabolism. It has an important role in bone and teeth mineralization. But what happens if the parathyroid gland isn't working properly? Various conditions point to problems with the PTH, like hypercalcemia. Learn more about hypercalcemia, its effects on your oral health, and treatment options.

What Is Hypercalcemia?

Hypercalcemia is a condition marked by increased levels of calcium in the blood. The parathyroid gland regulates the calcium levels in your body by releasing parathyroid hormones (PTH). Issues with the parathyroid gland can cause an excessive release of the parathyroid hormone, also known as hyperparathyroidism (HPT). There are three types of hyperparathyroidism: primary, secondary, and tertiary. Primary hyperparathyroidism (PHPT) and cancer are the most common causes of hypercalcemia, accounting for over 80-90% of cases.

Hypercalcemia and Teeth

How does hypercalcemia affect your oral health? Calcium is one of the things your body needs to build strong, healthy teeth and bones. It also builds and maintains your jawbone, helping to create a solid anchor for your teeth. So what happens if you have too much calcium in the teeth? There are mild to severe oral symptoms that your dentist is specially trained to detect and treat. People with varying types of hyperparathyroidism and hypercalcemia may experience:

Soft tissue calcifications

Tooth sensitivity when biting and chewing



Slight jaw pain

Treatment for Hypercalcemia

Your doctor will recommend a treatment option based on the severity and cause of the condition. According to the Cleveland Clinic, your doctor may suggest the following to moderate your calcium levels

Drink more water: This will help flush out the excess calcium.

Avoid calcium supplements.

Avoid calcium-rich antacid tablets.

To ensure that your overall health is taken care of, your doctor will monitor and treat the underlying causes of hypercalcemia too.

A hormonal imbalance and some cancer and cancer treatments may lead to hypercalcemia. Fortunately, your dentist can detect and effectively treat oral issues due to these conditions. Talk to your doctor and dentist if you are experiencing discomfort in your teeth when chewing, pain in the jaw, or any other dental problems. They can help you take good care of your oral health while undergoing treatment.

by Colgate

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Deep Cleaning Your Teeth: When to Do It

Deep cleaning your teeth might sound like something a dental professional recommends if you’ve not been brushing your teeth well enough or if you’ve missed more than a few dental visits. But in fact, deep cleaning is a dental procedure that treats gum and periodontal disease. According to a study by the Journal of the American Dental Association, deep cleaning is especially beneficial to people with chronic periodontitis. Learn when deep cleaning is right for you and how the process works.

When Is Deep Cleaning Necessary?

The American Academy of Periodontology suggests that the bones and gum tissue surrounding your teeth should fit snugly around them. When you have periodontal disease, these very bones and gum tissue get destroyed, resulting in pockets forming around your teeth.

Over time, these pockets increasingly get deeper, making room for bacteria to live, which leads to even more bone and tissue loss. Eventually, if too much bone is lost, dental professionals might recommend that you need to get those teeth extracted.

At your evaluation, your dentist will measure the depth of these pockets. If the pockets are too deep, you won’t be able to treat your teeth with at-home oral care only. You will need a deep dental cleaning.

How Does Deep Cleaning Work?

Deep cleaning of the teeth comprises two parts – scaling and root planing.

Scaling. This part of the procedure is where a dental professional removes all the plaque and tartar (hardened plaque) collected below the gumline, cleaning all the way down to the bottom of the pocket.

Planing. The next step of deep cleaning consists of your dentist or dental hygienist smoothening out your teeth roots so the gums can reattach to your teeth.

It may take more than a single visit for your deep cleaning procedure to be complete.

Oral Care After Deep Cleaning

After your deep cleaning, the pockets should be free of bacteria, but your gum tissue will most likely feel sensitive. Your dentist will give you specific instructions on caring for your teeth in the weeks to follow. It’s best to be careful about what you eat and how you brush. Your dental professional might also prescribe a mouth rinse to reduce bacteria in your mouth.

Your dentist will likely ask for you to come back for a check-up in a couple of months.

Deep cleaning for your teeth might feel like a big step, but in reality, it’s an effective procedure that can remove infection and tartar so your gums can heal. By prepping yourself mentally for the procedure, you can take the first steps towards healthier and happier gums. After all, happier gums equal a happier you!

by Colgate

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Endodontist vs. Periodontist, how are they different from each other?

You might maintain good oral care and schedule regular visits to your dentist, but there are certain conditions that a dental specialist may be better suited to treat. For instance, it's likely that you'd see an endodontist for more complex root treatments. Or, your dentist may refer you to a periodontist to address certain advanced gum conditions. Find out the difference between an endodontist vs. periodontist, their qualifications and when you should seek out specialized care.

Endodontists Treat the Tooth Root

A general dentist can, in some cases, perform root canals and treat gum disease with deep cleanings. But if severe problems arise in your root, your dentist may refer you to an endodontist. This is a dental professional who specializes in treating your tooth's root, pulp and any related pain, as the American Association of Endodontists (AAE) explains.

It takes several years of training to become an endodontist. First, an aspiring endodontist would typically gain a bachelor's degree in a related field, such as biology or chemistry, to prepare for dental school. The American Dental Association (ADA) notes that students must successfully complete the Dental Admissions Test (DAT) to apply for admission to a four-year accredited dental school. Upon completing dental school, endodontists train an additional two or more years in an accredited endodontics program. The last step, if they want to become a board-certified specialist, is certification with the American Board of Endodontics.

According to the AAE, endodontists represent less than 3% of dentists. They work to maintain your tooth's integrity and are highly skilled at performing surgery and procedures on the root and pulp of your teeth. In fact, the AAE reports that general dentists refer almost half of their root canal cases to endodontists. Your general dentist would likely refer you to one if you've experienced trauma to your face or mouth, or if you have severe swelling around your teeth. They'd also likely refer you to an endodontist for endodontic surgery. One of the more common referrals is for an apicoectomy, which is a surgery to remove the tip of your root and any acutely inflamed tissue to help prevent further infection, explains the AAE.

Periodontists Specialize in Gum Health

What is an endodontist vs. periodontist? Like an endodontist, a periodontist is a dentist who has the same skills and credentials as a general dentist but has also gained education and certification in treating, diagnosing and managing periodontal disease, as the American Academy of Periodontology (AAP) states. These experts complete an additional three years of training beyond dental school to become certified in an array of gum treatments. The AAP explains that periodontists are akin to the plastic surgeons of dentistry. They place implants, perform laser treatments, lengthen crowns and even perform regenerative procedures.

Maintaining healthy gums is vital to dental health, as they protect your tooth root from loosening or being exposed. Ideally, your gums should be a healthy pink color and fit evenly around your teeth. If your general dentist diagnoses you with advanced gum disease, a periodontist can perform pocket reduction procedures (gum surgery) to reduce pocketing and remove bacteria below the gumline that might cause infection, bone loss or tooth loss, as the AAP notes.

Preventing Tooth Root and Gum Issues

In many cases, issues with your roots and gums are preventable. Maintaining great oral hygiene at home can help you keep your mouth free of decay-causing bacteria and prevent early-stage gum disease. Remember to brush twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste, floss daily and see your dentist at least twice a year.

If you have pain in your mouth, or if you notice your gums are swollen, make an appointment with your dentist — sooner rather than later — so that they can refer you to the correct dental specialist, if needed.

by AAE

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A Sugar Lovers Tips For Preventing Tooth Decay

Whenever food is consumed, the bacteria naturally found inside the mouth work to break it down, causing acid to develop. This acid can break down the structure of your teeth, as well as destroy tooth enamel and dentin, resulting in the common oral disease of tooth decay. Although anyone can develop this condition due to the presence of bacteria in all our mouths, children are considered one of the most at risk groups for developing tooth decay. Practicing good oral hygiene and changing certain parts of your lifestyle can help to minimize this risk.

Visit the Dentist

One of the most effective ways to help eliminate the risk of developing tooth decay is to take your child to the dentist for regular cleanings and oral exams. The American Dental Association recommends that children visit the dentist within six months of developing their first tooth, no later than 12 months of age. Regular visits to the dentist can help in diagnosing and treating any conditions that could result in damage to your children's teeth.

Brush Regularly

Brushing your child's teeth regularly is also an important step in preventing cavities; brushing should occur at least twice each day. When possible, brush after each meal and just before bed time. There are a variety of toothbrush and toothpaste options you can purchase that are specifically suited for the oral care needs of children. Learn more about children's dental care products in the Colgate Oral Care resources.

Watch Their Diet

The foods and beverages you give your child are just as important as the oral care practices they follow. It's important to feed your children foods that are nutritious; foods that are high in carbohydrates, such as candy, cakes, sticky foods, and snacks should only be consumed in moderation. When your children do consume these foods, it is important to brush their teeth immediately, since carbohydrates have a tendency to adhere to the surface of the teeth.

Ensure Your Water Contains Fluoride

Make sure that the water in your community contains fluoride. To prevent tooth decay, it is recommended that children between the ages of 4 - 8 years old, consume at least 1.3 liters of water every day. If you live in a community that doesn't add fluoride to its drinking water, or if you use a private well as your water source, your dentist may prescribe a daily fluoride supplement for you to give to your child.

by Colgate

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Do Cavities Cause Bad Mouth Smell?

Most people wake up in the morning with less than kissable breath. But when bad breath, also known as halitosis, interferes with your confidence and social life, it's time to figure out what's causing it. Do cavities cause bad breath? And is your oral care routine strong enough to keep bad breath away? Here's what may be causing your bad breath and how you can remedy it.

Bad breath results from bacteria accumulation in the mouth. A research study published in the Indian Journal of Dental Research points out that causes of oral malodour can be local or systemic. Dry mouth and accumulation of plaque due to inadequate oral hygiene are the most common causes for the increased bacterial load. The microbes act on sulphur-containing proteinaceous substrates present in debris and plaque and produce volatile sulphur compounds which cause the malodour. The sulphur compounds are what we smell when we realise it's time to grab a mint.

The National Health Portal of India notes that bad breath or Halitosis (oral malodour) is an unpleasant odour of the mouth. It is a common complaint for both genders and for all age groups. Mild transient bad breath which often arises after sleep is common and generally not regarded as halitosis. It is termed as “morning halitosis.” Halitosis has numerous causes and origins.

Poor Oral hygiene: Sometimes it may be a consequence of lifestyle. If you don't brush and floss daily, food particles accumulate in between your teeth and on tongue; bacteria grow on the food left in your mouth and leave foul-smelling waste products (volatile sulphur compounds) behind, which lead to bad breath. Lack of regular tongue cleaning, may be a cause of bad breath despite proper brushing and flossing.

Dietary Habits: Intake of certain foods and drinks such as onion, garlic, spices etc. and certain habits such as smoking, using tobacco products, drinking alcohol cause halitosis. Fasting or starvation can also cause bad breath.

Do Cavities Cause Bad Breath?

Cavities are small holes in the teeth where bacteria collect and eat away at the enamel. While cavities do not directly cause bad breath, they can contribute to it. According to the Indian Dental Association, bad breath is caused by the decay of food particles that are not removed from the mouth by brushing and flossing. If you have bad breath, it does not mean you definitely have a cavity, but it's possible that you might. That's why it's important to maintain regular dental appointments and see your dentist right away if you suspect that you have a cavity or are experiencing tooth sensitivity or pain.

Manage Bad Breath and Cavities Like a Pro

One of the easiest ways to manage and prevent both bad breath and cavities is to practice good oral hygiene. Start with brushing twice a day. Brushing your teeth physically removes decay-causing bacteria and food particles. You should also floss daily to remove lingering bacteria and food particles hiding in between your teeth.

Keeping your mouth moist is important for fresh breath, too. The Indian Dental Association points out that dry mouths can be a cause of bad breath. Keeping hydrated will allow your body to produce enough saliva to keep your mouth clean. Saliva fights the growth of bacteria on your teeth. Be sure to drink plenty of water and talk to your doctor about any possible contributing factors for dry mouth, such as taking certain medications.

According to the National Health Portal of India, smoking can lead to various oral health problems including bad breath, tooth staining, gum disease, inflammation of salivary gland openings on the roof of the mouth, increase build up of plaque and calculus, loss of bone within the jaw, increased risk of leucoplakia (white patches within the mouth; a pre-cancerous lesion), delayed healing process, increased risk of developing oral cancer. Ask your doctor for strategies to help you quit.

In order to avoid bad breath, Healthy Mouth Healthy Body advises to maintain good oral hygiene, and clean your dentures among other measures. Follow your dentist's specific directions for cleaning your appliance.

Finally, seeing your dentist regularly ensures that your mouth stays healthy. A professional teeth cleaning can remove bacteria and food that your toothbrush at home may miss. Your dental professional will also check for decay that may harbour bad bacteria. If they do detect any cavities, they can fill them to stop the decay from worsening. Bad breath can be a real bummer. While cavities do not directly cause bad breath, you can prevent both bad breath and cavities by practicing good oral hygiene and seeing your dentist regularly.

by Colgate

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DDS and DMD: What Is The Difference?

DDS and DMD are the acronyms of the degrees dentists earn after finishing dental school. DDS means Doctor of Dental Surgery, and DMD can mean either Doctor of Medicine in Dentistry or Doctor of Dental Medicine. While the names are different, the American Dental Association (ADA) explains that they represent the same education. Some universities may grant dental graduates with a DDS, and others grant a DMD, but both degrees have the same requirements.

According to the ADA, the Baltimore College of Dental Surgery established the first Doctor of Dental Surgery degrees in 1840. When Harvard University started its dental school in 1867, their degrees were called Dentariae Medicinae Doctorate (Doctor of Medicine in Dentistry) because Harvard uses Latin names for their degrees. Even though these degrees are based on the same educational requirements, they still have different names.

What Is the Difference Between a DDS and a DMD?

Today, many universities award a DMD degree. Dentists with either a DDS or a DMD are educated to practice general dentistry. All dentists receive a rigorous education. First, dental schools typically require a four-year undergraduate education. Afterward, graduates go to dental school for another four years of classroom training, clinical training, and dental laboratory training.

Dental students spend the first two years of dental school studying biomedical sciences courses like anatomy, biochemistry, pathology, and pharmacology. The last two years are focused on clinical and laboratory training.

After graduating from dental school, dentists must pass a national written examination called the National Board Dental Examination, followed by a regional clinical board examination. Dentists must also pass a jurisprudence examination about state laws before being given a license to practice dentistry in that state.

With such extensive education and examination requirements, you can be certain that any dentist with a DDS or DMD degree is qualified to treat you.

Education After a DDS or DMD

Most dentists stick with practicing general dentistry. However, some choose to specialize in a particular area of dentistry after earning their degree. Training programs range from two to six years, depending upon the specialty area. There are several dental specialties, including endodontics, orthodontics, periodontics, prosthodontics, oral surgery, and pediatric dentistry. The ADA can help you find a dentist with a specialty that fits you best.

Dentists receive a rigorous education and have to pass several exams to be able to practice. Whether they have a DDS or DMD after their name, you should choose a dentist based on their skills, types of services provided, communication, and professionalism.

by ADA

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Remineralizing Teeth

Enamel protects the inner layers of your teeth from dietary acids, helping to keep them healthy and white. Once enamel wears away, it can’t repair itself1. However, it is possible to repair and strengthen weakened enamel – a process known as ‘remineralization’ – and protect your teeth from future erosion.

What Causes Teeth to Lose Minerals?

Enamel can wear away for a variety of reasons, but one of the most common is erosion caused by acids in your diet. These acids attack your tooth enamel, wearing away the minerals that keep it strong – a process called ‘demineralization’. Over time, this weakens your enamel, and the loss of minerals can result in white spots on your teeth, as well as changes in their shape. 

The good news is, before it’s worn away, acid-weakened enamel can be repaired and those important minerals can be restored. This is called ‘remineralization’.

What is Remineralization and How Do You Remineralize Teeth?

Remineralization occurs when vital minerals—like calcium—bond to the teeth to fill in the weakened areas of enamel.

These minerals need to be present in saliva to facilitate the process. You can get many of these minerals from the foods you eat, such as cheese and other dairy products, fiber-rich fruits and vegetables, or poultry and seafood.

6 Ways to Help Remineralize Teeth

1. Increase Saliva Production

One of the most effective ways to repair tooth enamel is to maximize the amount of saliva you produce. This is because essential components in your saliva – such as calcium and phosphate – can neutralize harmful acids and help restore minerals lost because of acids in your diet. Saliva is also your body’s natural defense against cavities.

2. Drink More Water

Tap water containing protective fluoride plays a crucial role in supporting remineralization by helping to replace some of the calcium present in the enamel. Rinsing your mouth with fluoridated tap water after eating or drinking acidic foods and drinks can also help to reduce the effects of acids on your teeth.

3. Use a Toothpaste Designed for the Job

Opt for a toothpaste clinically proven to help rebuild enamel strength, like Pronamel. Pronamel is specially designed to penetrate deep and remineralize acid-weakened enamel, to help protect your enamel every time you brush. Discover how Pronamel toothpaste actively strengthens weakened tooth enamel.

4. Chew Sugar-Free Gum

Chewing sugar-free gum helps to keep that all-important saliva flow up, protecting your enamel from acid wear and demineralisation. Always look for gums with the American Dental Association Seal of Acceptance.

5. Eat a Remineralization Diet

Certain foods can help remineralize the spots in your teeth that acidic foods and drinks have weakened. For example, foods rich in calcium (dairy products like milk, cheese and yogurt) help put back minerals into the enamel, and fiber-rich fruits and vegetables encourage saliva flow.

6. Dodge Acidic Drinks

Drinks that contribute to demineralization include sodas, sports drinks and fruit juices. In addition to their sugar content, these are all highly acidic and can wear down enamel – a combination that puts you at greater risk of demineralization and tooth decay.

Take Steps to Remineralize Teeth

You can help remineralize your teeth by following the tips above and adopting a good dental hygiene routine with products like the Pronamel range that are designed to protect enamel. You should also pay regular visits to your dentist so that signs of demineralization can be spotted early.

by Sensodine Pronamel

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Is Your Tongue Making Your Breath Stale?

It takes up a sizeable portion of our mouth, and we can feel when it becomes fuzzy and unhygienic, yet many of us ignore the tongue when it comes to our oral hygiene routine. It’s time to stop the tongue from feeling like the odd man out, and keep it fuzz-less and happy.


Newsflash: your tongue is teeming with germs. It’s not surprising, considering how often we eat, and the fact that many people neglect to clean this area when brushing their teeth. What’s more, 80% of the germs in our mouths aren’t on our teeth—they lies on our cheeks, gums, and of course, tongue, which is prime real estate for the growth of germs.

Add the fact that the tongue is a bit of a food-magnet, and you’ve got a recipe for germs heaven. Think of it as a large rug with millions of Velcro-like hooks, each of which snag particles of food debris. These then decompose and attract germs, which cause bad breath.


An unclean tongue can sometimes become discolored, blooming an unpleasant white, or even black. Do you want to add an unsightly, colorful mouth to already-existing bad breath? Luckily, there are easy solutions:


A moist mouth is a clean mouth. Lack of fluids can cause bad breath, so rinsing your mouth with daily use anti-germs mouthwash will help keep it fresh .

Tongue scrapers are easy to use, cheap, and found at almost any pharmacy or dentist. Simply run the cleaner or scraper over the surface of your tongue to slough off germs.

You can also try the Colgate 360 º® toothbrush. It’s designed to clean not only your teeth, but also clean your tongue, cheeks and gums by rooting out all the sneaky germs that lurk in your mouth. Simply flip the toothbrush over and clean with the cheek and tongue cleaner.


Each person’s tongue shape and map of taste buds is distinctive and matchless, making them as unique as a human fingerprint.

by Colgate

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What Causes a Cavity on the Front Tooth?

Learning that you or your child developed a cavity can be stressful, especially when that cavity is located in a highly visible part of the mouth, such as the front teeth. If your child has a cavity on the front tooth or you have one yourself, you may be wondering why it happened and how your dentist might treat it.

Common Cavity Locations

Tooth decay is most common in the molars and premolars, explains the Mayo Clinic. These teeth are located in the back of the mouth and have grooves and pits that can collect food particles. The back teeth may also be harder to reach with a toothbrush or floss. While the front teeth are smoother and easier to access for cleaning, they’re not immune to cavities. Any of your teeth can develop decay.

Causes of Front Tooth Cavities

If cavities are more commonly seen in back teeth, why might you develop a cavity on the front tooth? A survey conducted by Public Health England found that 5.1 percent of 5-year-old children in the country had decay in one or more of their front teeth, also known as the incisors. Public Health England explains that this type of decay is linked to long-term bottle use, especially when children are given sugar-sweetened beverages to drink overnight or for long periods of time during the day. Decay caused by these beverages is known as baby bottle tooth decay.

While the American Dental Association (ADA) explains that cavities are especially common in children, people of all ages may develop cavities in any of their teeth if their oral hygiene routine is insufficient. Forgetting to brush your teeth, skipping your flossing routine and consuming sugary foods and drinks puts you at risk of developing cavities.

Treatment Options

It’s important to seek treatment for a cavity as soon as possible before the decay worsens.

There are many ways that dentists can repair a front tooth cavity. Much like cavities elsewhere in the mouth, cavities in the front teeth may be treated with fillings. A dentist will remove the decayed portion of the tooth and fill it with strong, restorative material. For a natural look, tooth-coloured fillings may be used. These fillings can be made from materials such as acrylic acids or resins, reports Johns Hopkins Medicine. This treatment typically only takes one appointment.

To correct cosmetic issues that arise from a cavity on a front tooth, a dentist may recommend treating the cavity with either a crown, which is a tooth-shaped white-coloured restoration over the tooth, or a veneer, which is a thin piece of porcelain bonded to the front surface of the tooth. Johns Hopkins Medicine explains that these options may require two or more dental visits, and they can also be designed to match the patient’s natural tooth colour. Your dentist can help you determine the best treatment option for your individual situation.

Preventing Tooth Decay

No one wants to develop cavities. Fortunately, you can significantly reduce your risk of tooth decay with some simple steps. A good at-home oral hygiene routine is the first place to start. Remember to brush your teeth twice a day with fluoride toothpaste, and floss once per day. It’s also important to eat a balanced diet and try to limit foods and drinks with added sugars. See your dentist regularly for checkups and cleanings, too.

If you develop a cavity in your front tooth or notice that your child has developed one, rest assured that these cavities can be treated. By taking simple precautions, you can reduce your risk of future tooth decay and help your whole family maintain healthy smiles.

by Beddington Dental

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Key Factors In Selecting A Mouthrinse

You brush. You floss. You swish. Good for you! Nobody wants garlic pasta sauce from lunch to linger on their breath.

But you could be taking your swishes up a notch. Did you know that the best mouthwash for bad breath control also keeps your teeth healthy?

Next time you gargle to freshen your breath, be glad that your mouthwash multitasks. But what should a mouthrinse contain and how does it benefit your overall oral health?

Who’s to blame? Micro-villains!

Beware the little guys: tiny microorganisms in your mouth can cause bad breath. Regardless of whether germs or fungi are to blame for the halitosis, antimicrobial agents work to kill and slow the growth of these microorganisms.

In addition to keeping your breath fresh, mouthrinse containing antimicrobial agents works to reduce a buildup of unsightly plaque on your teeth. It also helps to counteract gingivitis, or gum disease.

Swish and spit with mouthrinse after brushing your teeth or whenever you want to freshen your breath.

30 seconds to blast-off!

Although fluoride is added to toothpaste, a little extra exposure to this essential compound is beneficial. Fluoride protects the teeth from decay. This active ingredient also prevents the tooth enamel from white spot lesions that may eventually lead to tooth decay.

Children over the age of 6 and adults should use the mouthrinse according to label directions each time they rinse their mouths. Holding the mouthrinse in your mouth and swishing it around your teeth for 30 seconds or longer helps the fluoride reach the crevices between each tooth.

That’s fine for you, but how do you get your kids to gargle for a full half-minute? Two words: get rhythmic. Have them hum a favorite song, such as two rounds of "Jingle Bells," while swishing. You can even make it into a game. To win, the little ones aren’t allowed to spit until the song has ended.

And what should you be gargling while you’re jingling bells? If you want to be sure to protect your teeth against bad breath, plaque and gingivitis, try Colgate Plax Mouthwash. The alcohol-free formula is gentle and protects the mouth from germs for 12 hours, even when eating and drinking.

The daily gargle

Make your routine more liquid: use mouthwash each morning and evening after brushing your teeth. Mouthwashes can also be used before or after flossing.

Brushing, using mouthwash and flossing is the best way to remove odor-causing germs. When you're shopping for oral care products, take a moment to peek at labels. Look for those key ingredients not only to keep your breath fresh, but to ensure a healthy future for your teeth.

by Colgate

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Family Dental Practice: What It Is And The Best Way To Find One

Everyone in your family has unique oral care needs throughout their lives. The good news is that there are dental offices that cater to various family oral care needs! You just have to know where to look and what to ask for. Learn more about family dental groups and why they may be a good fit for you.

Family dentist vs. General dentist

Family dentistry has been around for a long time. But family dental offices are unique because they provide a variety of treatments in-house. According to the American Dental Association (ADA), most dentists in North America – about 158,000 – practice general dentistry. General dentists can treat most oral care issues for the whole family, and they are considered your primary care dentist. Many general dentists have specialties, like orthodontics, root canal therapy, or even cosmetic dentistry.

Family dental groups or practices typically offer specialties or services for the whole family at the same location. With family dentists, you can schedule appointments for multiple family members at the same time. Of course, this depends on the schedule and availability of the dental office. Still, you can ask offices when searching for a family dentist. Having this kind of scheduling ability means less time waiting for back-to-back appointments or appointments on multiple days.

Benefits of a family dentist

Family dental groups are popular because they are so versatile. Most family dental groups have multiple dentists in their practice, offering the convenience of a "one-stop" solution for all your family's oral care needs. Suppose you need a pediatric dentist, an endodontist, or an orthodontist. In that case, you can find family dentists that provide all three in one office.

Family dental groups can make dentist visits positive experiences for children, especially. Children should have a dentist and dental hygienist who are gentle, patient, and comfortable working with kids. Kind and gentle dentists and dental hygienists will keep children comfortable and encouraged. It's worth the effort to find the perfect dental professional that makes your kids feel comfortable so they can have a lifelong positive attitude toward dental appointments.

How to find a state-of-the-art family dental practice

Many family dental groups have efficient and modern technology and facilities. All you have to do is research what you need and ask offices what they offer. Ask about the procedures and equipment the office uses when choosing your family dentist.

Today, many dental groups prefer safer X-ray machines and better imagining software to show patients any issues. This technology is called intraoral camera exams. The dentist can magnify problem areas on a monitor using a small camera. These are just two examples of modern technology found at most dental offices.

Intraoral cameras and newer X-ray machines are less invasive, which can really help children with dental anxiety. Check with your insurance carrier and research treatment plans when choosing a family dentist to ensure there are no surprises.

How to find a family dentist

A good family dental group will have worked with adults and kids, including very young children. You should search for a family dentist who can understand and respond to your family's various needs, such as losing those first teeth, fluoride needs, and even tooth whitening for the adults.

Consider the following as you are looking for a family dental group:

List the needs of your family members. Will one child need braces while another needs only a regular cleaning? Some dental groups have both a general dentist and orthodontist in the office.

Does the group have a pediatric dentist on-site? Pediatric dentists treat young children, young patients with special needs or disabilities.

Experience and rapport are vital for a long-term relationship. Read the family dental practice's website to read biographies, specialties, and services offered. You can ask friends and family for recommendations and read reviews online.

You should be able to ask questions and bring up concerns to your dentist and dental hygienist, including asking for product recommendations, healthy snack ideas, and demonstrations of flossing skills. You should learn more about preventative oral care and teach your children proper oral care habits with help from the family dental group.

Aside from experience and rapport, there are some convenience factors to look for as well:

Is the family dental group located close to home?

Are you able to schedule appointments conveniently, and do they send reminders?

What are the payment options available, including financing for procedures not covered by dental insurance?

Is the dental team professional and caring with their patients?

You can search for dentists in your area through reputable sites like the American Dental Association (ADA) Mouth Healthy site. Don't be afraid to be picky about your dentist. A family dental group can provide dental care to your whole family throughout your children's lives.

by ADA

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What is the rubber dam and why your dentist might use it?

A rubber dam is a thin sheet of latex that creates a barrier between the working field and the rest of the mouth. We punch holes in it for the teeth to slip through.

This has an incredible number of advantages to the dentist, the dental assistant, and most importantly, the patient. I will review some of these advantages here:

Prevents contamination of the cavity with saliva or blood when bonding your filling. The number one cause of sensitivity after a white filling is contamination during the bonding. Not only does this make your tooth hurt for weeks, but it also decreases the longevity of the filling. Poorly bonded fillings break down at the margins, allowing them to leak. Plus, when this occurs, decay then has an easy path under the filling.

Protects the lips, tongue, and cheek from harm from the drill. The rubber dam retracts and protects lips, cheeks, tongue, and even the gums. 

Retraction of soft tissue for better visibility. This also allows the dentist and assistant to focus more of their attention on your tooth and the procedure. The contrast in color from the rubber dam and the tooth also makes visibility better. Every step in a dental procedure requires a great level of attention to detail; the dam enables this.

Protection of the gum tissue. With the dam in place, we usually place a wedge between the teeth. In combination with the dam, this prevents damage to the gums. It also allows a clean working field. 

Prevents swallowing foreign materials. We use a lot of small tools, which can be dropped. It is very comforting for patient and doctor to have the dam as a safety net.

Keeps bad tastes out. Many dental products we use taste pretty bad, the dam will allow these products to be rinsed without touching any soft tissues. 

Keeps vapor from your breath out of the working field. Not only does this fog up our mirrors, making it hard to see, there is enough water in your breath to contaminate your filling.

Catches amalgam scraps. While it is not as critical to have a dry field for a silver filling, we still use the rubber dam for the above reasons and also to catch any scraps that fall off as we carve your filling. The dam also catches any pieces of fillings or crowns that are removed when drilling. 

Keeps bacteria from saliva out of the tooth during root canals. Root canal is the procedure that has been most associated with rubber dams; in fact, many dentists will only use the rubber dam for this procedure. It is used for good reason, as we use small files and caustic irrigating solutions that we do not want in your mouth.

Allows patients to relax. When first using the rubber dam, I anticipated a lot of negative reaction to it from patients. Surprisingly, the feedback I got was almost completely positive. Many patients found it comforting to have the protection in place and also not have to worry about what to do with their tongue.

by Buke Dentistry

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The Best Home Teeth Whitener For Coffee Lovers

If you enjoy sipping hot coffee in the morning, then you may have yellow or brownish stains on your teeth, and you may have considered a home whitening treatment. There are plenty of at-home whitening treatments available; you don't have to give up your morning cup of coffee to have a beautiful smile.

At-Home Bleaching for Tough Stains

Regular checkups are a great way to prevent the tooth discoloration that some coffee drinkers experience; even after a professional cleaning stains may come back due to the foods you eat or they may be intrinsic stains which affect the color of your teeth. If intrinsic stain is bothering you, then you can talk to your dentist about at-home bleaching. With this procedure, a whitening product is applied to your teeth using a plastic mouthpiece that your dentist custom-fits to your teeth. You may have to wear the mouthpiece for two or more hours every day for two weeks as per the instructions on the tooth whitening package, but this home treatment can make a noticeable difference.

Over-the-Counter Teeth Whiteners for Minor Stains

Teeth whitening products that you can purchase over-the-counter work well and you can consider at-home bleaching system recommended by your dentist. Still, they may be a good fit for some coffee drinkers. If your discoloration responds well to regular cleanings, then you can talk to your dentist about which products (whitening toothpastes and toothbrushes) might work well to routinely fight coffee stains. Products like white strips and whitening mouthwashes expose your teeth to lower concentrations of bleaching ingredients than a gel that your dentist would provide, and the results are milder. You can use them at home on your own for regular whitening. To prevent irritation or sensitivity, be sure to follow the instructions correctly and don't overuse any whitening products.

Whitening Toothpaste to Maintain a White Smile

A whitening toothpaste will help in removing coffee stains that may have recently developed and they help for maintaining a beautiful, bright smile. Colgate Optic White, for example, helps to remove stains with mild abrasives and removes lighter stains with hydrogen peroxide. It also offers cavity protection and helps to keep your breath fresh.

Using home teeth whitening products, can help you to keep your smile white so you can enjoy your coffee guilt-free. Whitening products can assist, however; even with proper use of a home bleaching system from your dentist, you will need to take extra care of your teeth to stop new coffee stains from developing. Brush twice a day and floss regularly. You can also rinse with water and then brush after enjoying your morning cup. Finally, see your dentist for regular cleanings to get rid of external stains as well as any plaque buildup.

by Colgate

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Is a Teeth Whitening Light Effective?

Getting ready for a special day? Want to appear more youthful? Gave up coffee, red wine, or smoking and wish to get rid of the stained teeth resulting from your former habits?

Whatever your reason for wanting whiter teeth, it's never been easier to have a brighter smile. Multiple options exist to whiten teeth, and some include UV, halogen, and LED lights designed to enhance the whitening process. But do you really need the extra expense of a light? And are the lights safe?

What Teeth Whitening Light Treatments Are Available?

At your convenience at home, you can apply any of the numerous over-the-counter treatments to whiten your teeth. Or your dentist can perform a cosmetic teeth whitening procedure in the office with at-home follow-ups if necessary. It all depends on your budget and time.

The types of treatments include everything from whitening toothpaste to products incorporating teeth whitening lights. There are primarily three types of lights used in teeth whitening:

UV (ultraviolet) light is a form of magnetic radiation that heats up in the tooth whitening process. A type of UV light used in teeth whitening is a laser. Teeth whitening employing UV light is usually performed in a dental office because of the burn risk of using UV at home.

Halogen light also emits heat produced by the metal tungsten in the heart of the light. As with UV light, halogen light is best used in dental offices.

LED (light-emitting diode) produces blue light to increase the teeth whitening process without any radiating heat to the teeth. Most over-the-counter tooth whitening kits with lights contain LED products – although dentists might use LED blue light, as well.

Does Light Teeth Whitening Work?

First up – how it works: The lights must be used in conjunction with a teeth-whitening substance, such as hydrogen peroxide or other whitening agents. After you or your dentist applies the whitening agent to your teeth, targeting the light on your teeth activates the whitener.

Is using light-activation worth it, though? Researchers found that laser, halogen, and LED light-activation produced increased lightening of tooth shade and maintained the lighter shade longer than non-light-activated teeth whitening in a study published in the Journal of Conservative Dentistry. Laser and halogen lights were most effective.

Is Teeth Whitening with Lights Safe?

This comes down to you or your dentist using the lights safely.

If not used correctly, UV light is considered a risk. It might cause soft tissue burning, gum irritation, damage to teeth, and increased tooth sensitivity. That's why your dental professionals will take every precaution to protect your teeth and gums when using UV light during a teeth whitening procedure.

For home use, be sure to follow the manufacturer's instructions exactly as written. This entails the length of time to use the whitening agent and the LED light.

If you have questions about teeth whitening lights, have a conversation with your dental professionals about the treatments available. They'll help you decide what's right for you regarding whitening agents and light-activation methods, whether UV laser, halogen, or LED.

By shining a light on the various teeth whitening activation methods, we want to help you become a more informed dental consumer when you talk to your dental professional.

by Colgate

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Tooth Bonding: Before, During And After

That moment you realize you've chipped a tooth doesn't just cramp your smile; leaving it unchecked could cause pain. Luckily, tooth bonding is a simple and relatively comfortable procedure for those who need to restore broken or weakened teeth.

Compared to other cosmetic dental procedures, bonding is quick and offers long-lasting results. If you think it might be your answer to a smooth smile, here's what you can expect before, during and after your appointment.


Bonding is just one procedure through which a dentist can help you attain a better smile, but it's not your only option. The application works best on areas of the mouth with low bite pressure, like your front teeth, and those that need minor repair. When the damage is more severe or in an area of high bite pressure, your dentist may suggest a veneer or crown – both of which are ideal for extensive damage or molar restoration, according to Cleveland Clinic. Your dentist can help you choose the treatment that's right for you.


Tooth bonding applies a resin that is then molded and hardened to fill in cracks or chips present in your teeth. It is virtually indistinguishable from your natural enamel, but before your dentist can begin his or her handiwork, the tooth must first be roughened so the resin material can properly adhere. This is typically done with a dremel-like tool, which can cause some sensitivity. Depending on the severity of the damage, your dentist may therefore opt to numb the area in which he is working to ensure your comfort.

A dental assistant often uses this time to mix the resin to match your natural teeth color. After the tooth surface has been roughened, this resin is applied and carefully shaped. A special light is then used to harden the resin, and you'll probably hear your dentist ask you to bite down several times to indicate if you feel excess resin that still needs smoothing away. This process is repeated until your tooth bonding is perfect.


Don't be surprised if your teeth feel a little strange after bonding; mouths are very sensitive to changes, and your tooth might feel wider with the addition of a resin. Over time it will bother you less.

Bonding may not last as long as veneers, but you should easily enjoy up to a decade of wear depending on the bite area and how you treat the tooth that was restored. Keep in mind bonding doesn't resist stains as well as crowns or veneers, and doesn't respond to whitening treatments. Your best bet is to follow a healthy oral hygiene routine to keep your bonding looking bright, including brushing with an all-purpose toothpaste like Colgate TotalSF Advanced Deep Clean. To ensure the most years of wear, avoid things that can crack the bonded material, such as using your teeth to open food wrappers.

Tooth bonding is a great option for many small but vital repairs. An afternoon in the dentist's office and a little patience on your part could mean beautifying areas of your smile that cause you to feel self-conscious.


by Colgate

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What is a Dental Hygienist?

Dental hygiene is considered to be one of the top best health care support jobs, both financially and emotionally rewarding. It is listed in the top 100 jobs, according to the US News; and Forbes included dental hygiene in its list entitled, “The Best Jobs That Don’t Require a Four-Year Degree”.

Dental hygienists work alongside dentists to care for patients oral health. Because of the low-stress dental hygienists experience at the workplace, hygienists have a fulfilling career, and many stay in their jobs into their 60’s. Learn more about the rapidly growing and expanding the field of dental hygiene.


Dental hygienists are the ones who prep their patient’s mouth for the dentist. They are the people who clean the teeth, examine the mouth for signs of any concerning oral conditions such as gum disease or oral cancers. They also will document the visit and educate the patient on how to take better care of and explain preventative measures of their mouths, teeth, and gums. 

Dental hygienists may take mouth x-rays, and apply tooth sealants and protectants. Tools hygienists use to clean teeth and gums are usually manual, powered, or ultrasonic, and they may use lasers, as well.

Some dentist offices will have their Registered Dental Hygienists administer local anesthesia and nitrous oxide, place fillings, remove sutures, polish restorations, and do some minor periodontal procedures such as root planing.

Dental hygienists perform their duties in a variety of settings beyond dentist offices. They may be employed in community health centers, nursing homes, prisons, schools and colleges, and state and federal government facilities.


Strong Communication Skills: As a dental hygienist, you’re working closely with both the doctor and the patient. So, it’s important that you’re able to clearly and effectively communicate important details.

Attention to Details: An excellent dental hygienist needs to be able to catch even the most minute detail within the confines of the patient’s mouth.

Better-than-decent Dexterity: Your hands are dangling in the mouths of patients so they need to be super steady because one slip and you can severely hurt them. Shaky hands equal scared sufferer.

Passionate about their position: You need to love all things oral health because you are the one who informs and educates your patients on best practices. Also, patients love hygienists who are enthusiastic and outgoing; it makes for a better visit because not too many people love visiting their dentist.

Superior Stamina: As a dental hygienist, you’re moving around a lot. You’re constantly switching from sitting to standing which, while good exercise (think squats!), can be exhausting.


Most dental hygienists start out in a community college or trade school in the dental hygiene program. Typically, an Associate’s in Applied Science in Dental Hygiene is the most common path and the one most preferred by potential employers. Most dental hygiene programs require one year of college curriculum with a GPA of 2.5 of higher before entering the program. Programs will take anywhere from two to four years, depending on whether you’re going for an associate’s or bachelor’s degree. All programs are similar, whether you’re going for an associate’s degree or bachelor’s degree. Both have general ed classes, as well as those that pertain directly to dental hygiene. However, when going for a bachelor’s degree, the courses go more in-depth, allowing the student a deeper knowledge of the field. While the bachelor’s degree option is perfect for those who plan on teaching, going into the research aspect of dental hygiene, or working in a clinical setting for schools or public health programs, an associate’s degree plus the certification is all that’s necessary to be employable.

In the associate’s degree program for dental hygiene, there are 24 credits of general education and 50 credits of core courses required, along with 8 elective credits. Bachelor’s degrees have a higher course credit requirement. 45 general elective credits, 68 core class credits, and 6 elective credits.

Dental hygiene coursework will include both classroom and practical, or hands-on, learning. Most programs include anatomy and physiology, microbiology and immunology, intro to dental hygiene, dental anatomy, periodontics, head and neck anatomy, and radiology in their curriculum.

by Career School Now

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5 Things You Need to Know About Coronal Polishing

When our teeth and gums are healthy, we feel more confident. However, the tooth enamel gets stained or turns yellowish as we go about our daily drinking and eating habits. To clean the teeth and make them shiny again, RDAs perform coronal or tooth polishing.

Due to its overzealous use, coronal polishing can be harmful and lead to the wearing of the superficial tooth structure. Eventually, it will lead to more accumulation of deposits around the teeth. That is why coronal polishing should be done selectively according to the patient’s need. So, before you ask your RDA for a coronal polishing procedure, there are certain things that you should know.

What is Coronal Polishing?

Coronal polishing is the procedure that removes stain and plaque from the coronal surfaces of teeth. It often concludes many dental appointments as it gives that clean feeling to the patient. A Dental Assistant can perform this procedure but needs to meet specific credential requirements, education, or state exam.

Why is Coronal Polishing an Integral Part of Dental Treatments?

Coronal polishing can:

Remove extrinsic stain.

Prepare teeth for certain dental procedures.

Discourage the buildup of local deposits and enhance fluoride absorption.

Create a smooth surface that is less likely to retain plaque, stain, and calculus.

However, a patient must be aware of the specific rules that need to be followed.

When Do You Need a Coronal Polishing?

The indications for coronal polishing are:

Removal of light plaque and stain

Removal of temporary cement residues

Placement of crowns and bridges

Placement of orthodontic bands and brackets

Placement of dental dam

Placement of sealants

Surface cleaning before the selection of a tooth shade guide

Coronal Polishing: Contraindications

It used to be a common thing to get coronal polishing at the end of a dental appointment. Dentists used to perform it to smoothen teeth, so various bacteria didn’t stick to the tooth that easily. However, polishing removes the exterior layer of tooth enamel (which takes a few months to rebuild) while the bacteria colonize on the surface regardless of the performed polishing. It is why coronal polishing should be selective, with an RDA polishing some, none, or all of the teeth.

Contraindications for coronal polishing include:

Intrinsic stain.

Areas of exposed cementum and dentin.

Patients with respiratory and infectious diseases, periodontitis/gingivitis, and unhealthy, spongy, edematous tissue.

Patients with metabolic alkalosis, Addison’s disease, hypertension, and Cushing’s syndrome.

Recession with tooth sensitivity.

Root caries.

Demineralized spots.

Absence of stain.

Selective Polishing

What does “selective polishing” mean? It means that an RDA must carefully choose which teeth to polish. For example, if a patient has a decalcified tooth, you can polish all other teeth except that one. Dental Assistant should assess when a patient isn’t suited for coronal polishing because it can affect their oral health.

The Coronal Polishing exam is mandatory for all RDA Applicants who want to obtain their license

by Dental Specialties Institute, Inc

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What Is An Alginate Impression?

Did you know that your teeth are unique? Many dental treatments and devices are specially designed to fit into the mouth naturally. Dental impressions help dentists create custom oral devices that will sit comfortably on teeth surfaces. To get these impressions, they use a material known as alginate. Learn more about what alginate is and how dentists use it.

What Is Alginate Made Of?

Alginate is a powder material that contains sodium alginate, calcium sulfate, trisodium phosphate, diatomaceous earth, zinc oxide, and potassium titanium fluoride. When mixed with water, it makes a smooth gel-like consistency that sets firmly enough to mold. Alginate is a hypoallergenic (unlikely to cause an allergic reaction) material that dental professionals use to take accurate teeth impressions for various oral devices and treatments.

Alginate Impression Uses

Dental impressions are used for any device that has to fit over or replace any of your teeth, such as:




Braces (and other orthodontic appliances)

Custom whitening trays

Because alginate impression material reacts favorably to water, it produces accurate dental impressions even in the presence of saliva. An accurate impression of your teeth and gums will help your dentist recreate a model of your dental arch. This will then be used to customize the dental device.

Making an Alginate Impression

Making dental impressions happens during your initial consultations. Your dentist will start by cleaning the teeth to remove any debris and allow the mouth to partially dry. Once this is done, they will mix the alginate powder with water to create a smooth, spreadable consistency. The mixture is then spooned onto a u-shaped impression tray that will fit onto the arch of your teeth. The tray will be firmly placed on the upper or lower teeth (depending on where the dental work is being done) for a couple of minutes. Let your dentist know if you experience a gag reflex. They may administer nitrous oxide, laughing gas, to stop the reflex and make you feel relaxed.

Getting impressions of your teeth is an important part of restorative and orthodontic treatments. Precise impressions help dentists make custom fitting appliances that won't cause irritation or discomfort. If you are worried about an active gag reflex, talk to your dentist. They are there to help you feel comfortable.

by Colgate

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What to ask your dentist during the first appointment

When we plan to visit a dental clinic, we think of many health-related questions to ask the doctor. However, very few people are aware of what to ask the doctor. but here are 9 questions you must ask your dentist during your first visit.

What is the status of my dental health?

Many patients skip this question and wait for their doctor to suggest the treatment. Knowing the root cause of our dental problem will keep you self-aware and stop you from doing anything that could disrupt your health. The dentist will evaluate and examine your case, discuss the situation, diagnose, and suggest the right kind of treatment.

What is the right way to floss?

The moment you ask this question, your dentist will show practically the method of flossing. A mirror will be placed in front of you to learn the techniques to help you get rid of harmful bacteria, plaque, and germs inside the mouth.

What type of toothbrush will suit my mouth?

Every individual is different. The method that may suit your friend may not be sufficient for your health. Therefore, ask your doctor, and they will suggest whether a soft-bristled toothbrush will be effective or need an electric toothbrush, depending on your dental condition

Should I use mouthwash for deep cleansing of my mouth?

Mouthwash comes with its share of pros and cons. After examining your dental health, your doctor will be able to suggest whether the usage of mouthwash will be good or bad for your health. For instance, an alcohol contained mouthwash may irritate some patient’s tooth enamel. Therefore, people with sensitive gums and tissues are suggested an alcohol-free mouthwash with fluoride content to protect the enamels and prevent canker sores.

Do I need to make any changes to my diet?

After undergoing dental treatment, your doctor will prepare some guidelines to follow, including some changes in your diet plan, medicines, and tips to heal quickly. There are some food products and beverages that can disrupt your dental health or cause side-effects post-surgery. Patients who performed any dental treatment should eat healthy, soft, and freshly-prepared food to improve their recovery rate.

Our teeth become vulnerable after undergoing dental treatment. Therefore, it may not help to chew the food properly, resulting in constipation or digestive disorders. Make sure you eat well-cooked food and fresh juice for good dental health.

What to eat and what not to eat?

Avoid eating sugary items, soft drinks, and carbonated drinks.

Avoid eating starchy food as it gets stuck on the tooth surface.

Do not drink caffeine or tea as it stains your teeth.

Quit smoking and limit your alcohol consumption

Eat foods that are freshly prepared and well-cooked

Add more green leafy vegetables and fresh fruits in your diet.

Why my mouth feels dry all the time?

A dry mouth can be an initial symptom of an underlying health condition such as diabetes, gum disease, gingivitis, bad breath, or periodontitis. Many things may cause dry mouth, including bacterial build-up inside the mouth, tooth infection, or oral cancer. Therefore, immediately consult your dentist if you are experiencing this problem. The dentist may run a few tests to check your salivary glands and examine your health history to diagnose it.

Which toothpaste will suit my teeth and gums?

As there are limitless options in the toothpaste market, all claiming to be the best, choosing the right toothpaste is a task to accomplish. If you are tired of trying new toothpaste every month to find out what suits you better, it is wise to ask your dentist or dental hygienist. The professional will examine your mouth and may recommend customized-medicated toothpaste that may protect your teeth and make your gums stronger.

When should I book my next dental appointment?

If you have performed dental treatments like a root canal, dental implant, dental crowns, or cosmetic dentistry, your doctor may ask you to visit within a few weeks or a month. Ideally, every individual should pay a visit to their trusted dental clinic in Pune once every six months for a routine check-up.

A routine check-up will help your doctor closely monitor your dental health and detect any dental issues on its initial stage. If you are someone with a family history of cancer, do not avoid or delay your dental appointments. Diseases on its initial stage can be easily treated with safe treatment, home remedies, and a few medicines

by Dev´s oral care

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What Is an Odontoplasty?

Do you ever look at your teeth and wish you could fix something about them? Feeling self-conscious about the appearance of your teeth can affect the quality of your social interactions and self-esteem. But, there are many dental procedures available that can improve your smile. Braces, teeth whitening, and bonding are just some of the readily available methods. But have you heard of odontoplasty? In this article, we'll be discussing what this is, how it works, and how to take care of your teeth after this treatment.

What is Odontoplasty?

The American Dental Association reported that 38% of young adults find their lives less satisfying because of dental issues. Cosmetic dentistry not only improves the aesthetic of your teeth, but it can help you feel good about yourself too. Treatments include the correction of teeth misalignment, whitening, and reshaping teeth size and shape. Odontoplasty is a dental cosmetic procedure known as enameloplasty, dental recontouring, or tooth reshaping that enhances the overall appearance of your teeth. Some dentists may recommend this cosmetic treatment as part of your orthodontic journey.

What Happens During Odontoplasty?

An odontoplasty is a noninvasive procedure with minimal to no discomfort. Dentists use a sanding disc or diamond bur (drill) to remove small amounts of tooth enamel (the outer layer of teeth). Helping to adjust and reshape the length, size, and/or shape of teeth. Odontoplasty can also create symmetry in the teeth, particularly for people with uneven teeth length. Once the dentist has reshaped the teeth, they will polish the area to complete the treatment. The procedure is generally complete in one appointment with immediate changes in the appearance of your smile.

Do I need Odontoplasty?

If you have minor teeth alignment issues, you can improve these with this procedure and smile confidently. You may be a candidate for odontoplasty if you have:

A slight overlap between one tooth and another

Chipped tooth

Uneven front teeth

Pointed tooth/teeth

Minor crowding

Bulges in tooth enamel

After Care Tips

Because odontoplasty thins out tooth enamel, it's important to take special care of your teeth after this procedure. You can start by maintaining a good oral hygiene routine; brush your teeth twice a day, and remove plaque and bacteria between teeth and gums with an interdental cleaner. You may want to avoid biting and chewing into any hard foods after the procedure.

You deserve to have a perfect smile. Fortunately, with dental cosmetic treatments like odontoplasty, you'll be well on your way. This procedure is a great option if you are looking to straighten and enhance your teeth in one dentist's appointment. Remember to speak to your dentist to determine if this is the right treatment course for you. They may recommend odontoplasty to correct a slightly chipped tooth, uneven teeth, and minor crowding. Once you've improved the appearance of your teeth, you should keep to a good dental care regimen. This will protect your smile and assist in preventing dental health issues.

by Colgate

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Views: 136

Dysgeusia: Symptoms, Causes and Treatment

Taste and its role in the enjoyment of food is something that many of us take for granted. And yet, a taste disorder can have a negative effect on our quality of life and nutrition. It may also indicate an underlying problem.

Symptoms of Dysgeusia

Tongue dysgeusia is a taste disorder that manifests as a lingering, unpleasant sensation in the mouth. People who experience a taste disturbance often report having a frequent foul, rancid, metallic, or salty taste perception. The condition has been attributed to physiological changes in the body, certain ailments, vitamin deficiencies, prescription medications and cancer treatment.

Causes of Dysgeusia

Here are a few causes of this taste disorder that may help your dentist or physician to identify the root of the problem and, hopefully, restore your ability to enjoy food:

Medication. A metallic taste is perhaps the most common sensation reported, and is often attributed to the use of medication. More than 200 medications are known to cause taste disorders, yet this side effect is often overlooked in drug development, notes an article in Toxicological Sciences.

Cancer treatment. Dysgeusia can occur as a side effect of chemotherapy and radiation. It is more common in the treatment of head and neck cancers, although it can occur with the treatment of any type of cancer. According to the Society of Sensory Professionals, cancer treatment can interfere temporarily or permanently with the ability to taste or smell food. Doctors should address these effects to prevent malnutrition and weight loss.

Diabetes. Another instance of tongue dysfunction can occur in people with undiagnosed diabetes, especially in cases of adult onset or type 2 diabetes mellitus. Referred to as "diabetic tongue" by an article in the Journal of Family Medicine and Primary Care, dysgeusia can be an early symptom of the condition. Researchers have found that altered taste is not constant throughout the day, meaning it could be attributed to fluctuations in blood sugar levels and identified as an early clinical sign for diabetes.

Other causes. The aforementioned study also recognised that other systemic health problems, such as zinc deficiencies, dry mouth and autoimmune diseases, could also cause changes in taste. Other causes include ageing and physiological changes, such as pregnancy and menopause. In addition, head injuries and certain ear, nose and throat procedures can cause taste disorders. Dental issues like poor oral hygiene and the extraction of a wisdom tooth can also lead to dysgeusia.

Treatment of Dysgeusia

The treatment of taste dysfunctions often requires addressing the underlying problem, when possible. The condition may also be self-limiting and resolve on its own. However, when it occurs due to systemic issues or the use of necessary medications, a taste disturbance can be managed through nutritional, dietary and palliative treatments.

Dietary counselling about flavouring agents and spices is important to avoid inadequate nutrition and unhealthy ingredients as a way of enhancing taste. Such counselling explains the importance of avoiding additional salt and sugar, which can increase cavity risk and contribute to high blood pressure.

In instances of dry mouth, your dentist may recommend a daily mouth rinse. Dry mouth can cause taste disturbances, but it also contributes to cavities due to the lack of saliva. An alcohol-free mouth rinse can help repair daily damage to teeth, restores natural calcium, and repairs weakened enamel.

Finally, it is important to visit the dentist regularly for preventive oral health care. Along with routine home care and a healthy lifestyle, these efforts may help diminish the degree of dysgeusia and get you more excited about sitting around the dinner table.

by Colgate

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What to Look for in a General Dentist

The ideal dentist is a partner in you and your family's oral health. They will be tracking your family history, ensuring you get regular checkups, professional cleanings, and taking care of dental emergencies that crop up when you least expect them. Ready to find your next dentist? Make sure he or she fulfills the following requirements and puts you at ease.

General vs. Specialty

Dentists operate in many capacities, and if they've had special training beyond dental school, they may have a particular dental specialty. For example, pediatric dentists are experts in working with children, whereas periodontists focus on gum, bone, and periodontal care. Both of these dentists have received either their DDS or DMD, which, according to the American Dental Association (ADA), results from the same education level. In any case, you should see a general dentist for regular checkups,  professional cleanings, and maintaining regular dental care.

General Dentists

A general dentist knows your patient history, educates you on daily hygiene, and can provide the most common dental services in-office. Your general dentist should also be concerned with patient education and healthy habits to ensure checkups go smoothly in the future. Dentists who specialize in general care can offer select restorative services – such as crowns, bridges, or dentures – along with emergency procedures and cavity care as needed. Suppose it's a minor or common procedure. In that case, your general dentist should be the one to guide you through the process, make you feel confident about it, and help you learn how to care for your smile at home.

Specialty Dentists

There are times when your general dentist should refer you to a specialist for procedures that cannot be done in-office. In these instances, another dental specialist would be better equipped to handle your oral care. Specialty dentists focus on dental issues beyond standard care. Dental specialists receive additional training on specialties above and beyond their general dentistry degree. Specialists are necessary when you encounter problems that a general dentist can't address, like those due to heredity, overall health issues, or an accident.

Suppose your child is incredibly nervous, for instance. In that case, your dentist may direct you to a pediatric dentist who practices sedation dentistry or takes an approach that is better suited for younger patients. Suppose your teeth are damaged and you need extensive cosmetic work. In that case, your general dentist could refer you to a cosmetic dentist for more in-depth treatment. A good general dentist knows when to refer patients and when to treat them personally.

Choosing a Dentist

You know what makes a good general dentist, but that's only half the battle. Do your homework, and you'll be able to find a dentist that makes you feel at ease and in control of your oral health, no matter what condition you might be grappling with. Consider these tips for matching yourself with a great general dentist:

Ask friends and family. Referrals are an excellent way to find a dentist that patients love. Your friends and family can give you an objective idea of different dentists in the area, including their strengths and weaknesses.

Check their credentials. Make sure any dentist you consider is a member of the ADA, which holds its members to five ethical standards of patient care, including an up-to-date skillset.

Schedule a checkup. Because it's impossible to evaluate a dentist without meeting him or her, book this new patient appointment, which many dentists offer for free or at a discount for new patients. Get to know the dentist, ask questions about fluoride use, and handle emergency procedures.

Choosing a dentist means choosing a partner in oral health, so it shouldn't be done lightly. Most metropolitan areas have an abundance of dentists available. Still, they won't all be the perfect fit for you and your family. By patiently identifying the differences in each professional, you can choose someone to work with who you feel comfortable giving a place on your family's calendar to give you years of healthy teeth and smiles.

by Colgate

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Dental Technology: The Professionals Who Restore Smiles

Dental technology is a branch of the dental sciences that includes dental technicians, lab scientists, metallurgists and other compound specialists who work to recreate dental anatomy. Whether the natural oral environment is disrupted by disease, accidents or other alterations, skilled professionals can help restore the function, health and look of their patients' mouths.

Technology makes the world go round. Not only that, but it makes the world go round more efficiently and more pleasurably. Simply stated, technology makes life easier. At Fedorciw, Massoumi, & Kolbig, we believe that life should be easy and so should visiting the dentist. Because of this, we offer our patients the best modern dental technology. 

Recently, the role of technology in the dental office is becoming increasingly important, as most patients are looking for dental care that is fast, minimally-invasive, and effective. We at Fedorciw, Massoumi, & Kolbig hear that, and we implement certain technological advancements that allow our approach to dentistry to be fast, minimally-invasive, and effective. 

Some of the ways we offer our patients the best in dental technology is through diagnostics, treatment, and restoration options. Our office uses diagnostic methods such as digital dental x-rays, treatment anesthetics such as Kovanaze, treatment methods such as Invisalign, and restoration options such as same day crowns. Each of these offers an effective and easy alternative to traditional dentistry. 

Digital Dental X-rays: 

Dental x-rays are an essential diagnostic tool that allows our dentists to evaluate your teeth, jaw, and underlying bone structure. They can also be used to diagnose cavities or possible bone mass loss caused by gum disease. At Fedorciw, Massoumi, & Kolbig, we use digital x-rays because they do not require film to process, can easily be enhanced or enlarged, and use less radiation than traditional x-rays. 

There are two different types of x-rays that are performed in our office: intraoral and extraoral. Intraoral refers to x-rays that are taken of the inside of the mouth. Intraoral x-rays are used to detect cavities, examine your tooth roots and surrounding bone, check developing teeth, and oversee the health of your jawbone. 

Intraoral x-rays can be obtained a number of ways. Some of the most commonly performed intraoral x-rays include: 

Bitewing: Used to check for cavities between teeth, you will simply bite down on a specialized paper. This viewpoint shows how well your top and bottom teeth match up. 

Occlusal: This also shows how well your top and bottom teeth match up, as well as detects any abnormalities with the top or bottom of your mouth. 

Panoramic: This viewpoint captures all your teeth in a single shot by rotating around your head. This type of x-rays is used for implant planning, the diagnosis of jaw problems, and to plan for wisdom teeth extraction. 

Periapical: This viewpoint focuses on two teeth. Specifically, it shows the teeth in their entirety, from crown to root. 

Extraoral x-rays refer to those that are taken outside of the mouth, specifically of the jaw and skull. Extraoral x-rays are used to monitor the growth of the jaw in relation to teeth, identify impacted teeth, or to diagnose problems with the temporomandibular joint. 

Dental Lab Technology in Action

Dental technology is a rapidly changing field. Through new CAD/CAM (computer-aided design and computer-aided manufacturing) techniques and improved treatment options, patients are keeping their teeth longer in life. According to a survey 48 percent of adults aged 20 to 64 had retained all their teeth in 2011-2012. Nevertheless, that means a large percentage of the population still needs the expertise of dental technicians.

by Dental Technology of Today

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What is the difference between a dental technician, assistant, and hygienist?

Are you interested in a career in dentistry? You don’t have to be a dentist to reap the benefits of this exciting and rewarding field. There are many excellent job prospects at various levels of this industry.Three of the most common roles in the dental field are Dental Techs, Dental Assistants, and Dental Hygienists. In this blog post, you’ll earn the difference between each of these roles and find out which one is right for you!

What is a Dental Tech?

Dental Techs, also known as Dental Technicians, work in a laboratory environment and construct, fit, and repair dental appliances and devices. Working as a Dental Technician is a great job for those who like hands-on work and have a natural artistic instinct. Additionally, this person should be detail-oriented and creative. This role is best for someone who isn’t interested in direct interaction with patients, as Dental Technicians are not allowed to examine, diagnose, advise, or treat patients.

What Are the Job Responsibilities of a Dental Tech?

The typical responsibilities of a Dental Technician include:

Filling orders for dental prosthetics or restorations, like dentures, bridges, veneers, inlays, and crowns.

Creating individual models of patients’ mouths from both physical and digital molds.

Working with various materials, including plaster, wax, porcelain, and metal.

Matching the color and shape of the model to patients’ teeth.

Dental Tech Education Requirements

A Dental Technician must have a high school diploma or GED. Job opportunities are better for those who complete a 2-year Dental Lab Technician program leading to an associate’s degree or certificate. Dental Technicians can choose to specialize in one specific area like ceramics, dentures, or crowns and bridges. These specializations require an exam through the National Board for Certification in Dental Technology.

How Much Do Dental Techs Make?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Dental Techs typically make around $35,000 per year.

What is a Dental Assistant?

Dental Assistants are a crucial part of a dental office and work closely with both Dentists and Dental Hygienists. This position is primarily focused on preparatory responsibilities and assisting tasks. This position is perfect for someone who is hardworking, compassionate, highly organized, and who can listen and communicate effectively. Additionally, a Dental Assistant needs to have strong critical thinking skills and the ability to solve problems without getting flustered.

What Are the Job Responsibilities of a Dental Assistant?

Common responsibilities of a Dental Assistant include:

Readying patient treatment rooms for appointments

Greeting patients, communicating dental care information, and answering questions

Assisting during dental appointments, including positioning instruments and equipment

Using high-tech dental lab and diagnostic tools

Scheduling patient appointments and sending patient remindersOccasionally assisting patients with insurance billing issues

Dental Assistant Education Requirements

Dental practices strongly favor Dental Assistants who have completed a reputable dental assisting program. However, previous healthcare training or education is not necessary in order to enroll in this type of program.

How Much Do Dental Assistants Make?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, nationally Dental Assistants can expect to earn around $37,000 per year.

What is a Dental Hygienist?

Under a Dentist’s supervision, a Dental Hygienist provides preventative oral care to patients. This person is highly knowledgeable about oral health and has the highest level of technical and healthcare skills out of all three positions discussed today.

A Dental Hygienist should stay up-to-date on up and coming dental technologies, have outstanding manual dexterity, and be passionate about helping patients achieve great oral health. This person must also be professional, detail-oriented, and friendly. Dental Hygienists usually work in one dental office or multiple offices of a single practice and don’t always work a full-time schedule.

What Are the Job Responsibilities of a Dental Hygienist?

Typical responsibilities of a Dental Hygienist include:

Conduct preliminary dental examinations on new patients

Take and develop dental x-rays

Educate patient on procedures and treatments

Complete dental cleanings

Evaluate oral health of patients

Take notes on decay, conditions, and any treatment recommended by the dentist 

Dental Hygienist Education Requirements

Dental Hygienists must graduate from an accredited dental hygiene school with either an associate’s (2-year) degree. Some Dental Hygienists eventually earn a bachelor’s or even a master’s degree. Following graduation, an aspiring Dental Hygienist must pass a written and clinical exam to receive a state license.

How Much Do Dental Hygienists Make?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Dental Hygienists make around $73,000 per year


by Cynthia Lofquist, R.D.A

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Who is a dental technician?

Dental technicians use their artistic and scientific talents to construct prostheses after obtaining a prescription and dental impressions from a licensed dental professional. By using materials available in the industry, dental technicians can improve the quality of life for patients by restoring or retaining their natural smiles through the replacement of missing or damaged teeth and gums.

The dental technician collaborates with the dental office to design safe reconstructive devices, such as crowns, bridges, full dentures, partial dentures, ceramics or veneers, orthodontic appliances and implants. The cost of these devices varies greatly depending on the time, work and materials that go into each one. For dentures, in addition to the initial purchase price, any repairs must also be factored into the overall price tag.

If you’re fascinated by the world of dentistry but the thought of delving into someone’s mouth and finding bits of food doesn’t appeal to you, then becoming a Dental Technician could be your ideal career move.

A Dental Technician’s role is to be the branch of dentistry that manufactures dental prosthetics. This can range from implants, bridges, crowns, dentures and even veneers. When a dentist or dental hygienist takes an impression of your teeth, the results will be sent to a dental technician who will then follow the instructions and create whatever device the patient requires.

In this role, there is the opportunity to specialise in a particular area, for example, ceramics. Still, the majority of technicians enjoy the variety of work that comes into the laboratories each day.

Some of the daily tasks you can expect to do as a Dental Technician include pouring dental models, fabricate models from dentist impressions, implant restorations and fabricate veneers for crowns. As with every job role, there are also housekeeping tasks such as maintaining dental lab records and preparing reports.

One of the most attractive parts about being a Dental Technician is that there is little customer interaction. In this role, you can work from a laboratory, far away from the dental practice and communicate via email and post; you will never be tasked with the challenge of fitting any of the devices you make.

How to become a Dental Technician?

You will need a qualification to stand out from other candidates in the field, at the University of Bolton, a range of Dental Technology courses are available. All these courses are provided in a state-of-the-art £4.8 million facility which houses industry-standard equipment, preparing all the students for a successful career.

Working hard in the laboratories is one thing, but you will also require some soft-skills to charge up the dental career ladder. You’ll need a steady hand as you’ll be required to work on prosthetics for extended periods, and a good eye for detail when it comes to understanding a dentist’s prescription.

Fortunately, these soft-skills, alongside time management, critical thinking, listening, reading comprehension and interpersonal skills, which are all essential to a successful career as a Dental Technician, can be taught by the incredible lecturers at the University. 

by University of Bolton

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What a Dental Clinic Can Do for You

Going to the dentist doesn't always mean visiting the office of a private practice. A dental clinic can actually house solutions for all of your dental needs under one roof, and there is more than one kind of specialist in this type of facility.

A clinic can be situated in a dentistry school, hospital, private health centre (run by one or numerous owners) or other facility. In all of these settings, the dental clinic emphasises patient education to prevent disease and provide the same procedures that are warranted in a general practice. An average clinic is staffed by dentists, dental assistants and dental hygienists who provide services such as exams, cleaning, X-rays, fillings and other necessary dental care.

Why You Would Use One

Dental clinics pride themselves on having numerous associates and specialist dentists available at any one time. There are also many procedures available to you as a patient.

As the school year begins, appointments may become harder to schedule – which is why clinics generally offer longer hours and more days open to the public. And whether it's for you or your child, there are numerous clinics to use so you're in and out having received the care you needed.

Disadvantages to Using a Dental Clinic

Nonetheless, the broad clientele of a dental clinic can become inconvenient when more advanced procedures are needed. This includes:

Not having the original dentist who started the procedure complete it.

Loss of a personal contact with the practitioner.

High turnover of dental staff.

How to Make the Best of It

The early diagnosis of mouth problems through regular dental visits is of utmost importance when looking to maintain proper oral health. Using a good toothpaste twice a day, along with regular flossing, are two excellent preventative measures to ensure these visits are as simple as possible. There are also "mobile" dental clinics that are available to assist in getting dental care to those who cannot physically attend a clinic on their own. Such dental clinics play an important role in helping people obtain proper and timely treatment.

Dental clinics are an asset to a community by offering people dental care that is consistent with their expectations.

The clinic works to provide necessary procedures in the face of dental diseases that are highly preventable. Some clinics strive to provide this at a cost that is less than that charged by the average dental office.

The difficulty of finding an office when and where it's needed makes this type of facility a great asset – especially when trying to obtain oral health care on a tight budget or amid a busy schedule.

by Colgate

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What to know about morning breath

Waking up with morning breath isn’t a fun way to start your day. But it’s extremely common, and most people experience it at some point. Fortunately, it can be treated like all other causes of halitosis (bad breath).

What causes morning breath?

There are a number of different causes of morning breath, but the two biggest causes are dry mouth and bad oral hygiene.

Dry mouth

If you have good oral hygiene, dry mouth is most likely to blame. Saliva is responsible for removing the bacteria that can cause bad breath. When we sleep, saliva production decreases significantly. Certain medications can cause dry mouth, making morning breath even worse.

Poor oral hygiene

Poor oral hygiene is another common cause. Our mouths are the perfect breeding ground for bacteria. If you’re not brushing or flossing effectively, food particles can get stuck in crevices on the surface on the tongue, between the teeth, or along our gum tissue.

The bacteria in your mouth will break down those food particles, which releases the lovely bad breath come morning time.

Morning breath can be a symptom of periodontal disease, especially if poor oral hygiene goes unchecked. Periodontal disease affects the gums, causing infections in pockets beneath the teeth that can cause strong, persistent halitosis. Periodontal disease —which starts as gingivitis — will need to be treated by your dentist.

Eating certain foods

What you put into your body can result in morning breath. Eating strong-smelling foods in the evening like garlic or raw onions can cause morning breath the next day, even if you brush your teeth well.


Tobacco use — particularly smoking — is also directly linked to both morning breath and general halitosis. It can dry out your mouth and make you more prone to gum disease. Add the smoke smell on top, and it can be a recipe for potent breath.


People with gastrointestinal reflux (GERD) — also known as acid reflux — may experience bad breath due to stomach acid washing back up in their esophagus when they sleep at night.

How is morning breath treated?

In many cases, morning breath can be treated at home with a combination of better oral care and lifestyle changes.

Maintaining impeccable oral hygiene is both the best quick fix and long-term solution for bad breath of any kind. Brush your teeth immediately before you go to bed at night, and don’t eat or drink anything afterward. Doing so can introduce food particles that will be broken down over night. Floss your teeth and use an antiseptic mouthwash after using a tongue scraper.

If you wear a retainer or other orthodontic gear, clean it daily. Brush your teeth as soon as you’re awake to eliminate any remaining morning breath.

If you’re smoking or using tobacco, stop immediately.

Sugar-free gum may also be helpful, especially if you’re on the go and experiencing recurrent bad breath along with morning breath. Sugar-free gum doesn’t give the bacteria in your mouth sugar to thrive on. It can also help to stimulate the flow of saliva and freshen your breath simultaneously.

Your dentist will need to treat periodontal disease with deep cleanings. This will likely include a scaling and root planing procedure, where your dentist removes plaque and calculus from the teeth and gums. Depending on how advanced the infection is, surgery may be required.

For those experiencing bad breath as a result of GERD, your doctor can prescribe acid-reducing medication that you can take at night before you sleep. They also may recommend sleeping in a more upright position to reduce acid in the esophagus.

Preventing morning breath

Morning breath can be treated, but most people would prefer to avoid it altogether.

What you put in your body matters a great deal:

Drink lots of water, especially before you go to bed at night. This keeps you hydrated, preventing dry mouth and the resulting bad breath.

Avoid strong-smelling foods at night, like garlic or onion, and skip out on coffee (even decaf) once the afternoon is over. Ultimately, a healthy, well-balanced diet will help your overall health and can reduce morning breath.

Giving up tobacco can improve your breath instantly, day and night.

It’s imperative to practice good oral hygiene on a regular basis to both treat and prevent morning breath. Brush your teeth for two minutes before you go to bed before flossing and using an antiseptic mouth rinse to kill off any extra bacteria. You should also use a tongue scraper to keep your tongue clean.

If you’ve followed all the prevention methods and home treatments and nothing seems to work, make an appointment with your dentist. They can help you determine the cause of your morning breath and identify the best treatment options moving forward.

by Health Line

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What is CAD/CAM Dentistry?

The manufacturing industry has utilized computer-aided design (CAD) and computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) for decades to create precision tools and parts. The dental profession first adopted this technology in 1985, revolutionizing the construction of dental restorations and prostheses. Since then, CAD/CAM dentistry has only advanced, providing benefits to both professionals and patients.

Understanding Digital Dentistry and the CAD/CAM Process

CAD/CAM dentistry describes the software that makes it possible for dental professionals to perform complex restorations faster, more efficiently, and sometimes more accurately. Both dental practices and laboratories use CAD/CAM technology to construct restorations like crowns, inlays, onlays, veneers, bridges, dentures, and implant-supported restorations from high-strength ceramic. Here's what to expect from a restoration procedure using CAD/CAM.

Tooth Preparation. Your dental professional will prepare the site for your restoration by removing all decay or portions of the structurally unsound tooth.

Intraoral Scanning. Next, an optical scanner will digitally capture the tooth preparation and surrounding teeth to create a 3D custom image.

Restoration Design. With those 3D images, the dental professional will use the CAD software to design the final restoration.

Milling. Next, a milling machine takes the design and shapes the crown, veneer, inlay, onlay, or bridge from a single block of ceramic.

Sintering and Polishing. The restoration is stained or glazed to look more natural before being polished.

Cementation. Finally, the restoration is permanently placed in your mouth to complete your smile.

This whole process could take anywhere from 45 minutes to two hours, depending on the case's complexity. Still, CAD/CAM requires less time and effort than traditional laboratory methods.

Benefits of CAD/CAM in Dentistry

The use of CAD/CAM technology provides benefits not only for dental professionals but also for patients. Some of the significant advantages include:

Single-Visit Treatments. Using traditional laboratory methods, your dentist or prosthodontist would prepare your tooth, make an impression, and send the impression to a lab to create the final restoration. With CAD/CAM technology, the dental professional can sometimes complete all these steps in a single visit, allowing for fewer disruptions in your schedule.

Digital Impressions. If you've ever had a conventional impression, you immediately understand the benefits of a digital system. The traditional method requires the patient to place a tray with a thick, gooey material — called alginate — in their mouth and hold for two to five minutes until the material sets. A scanner is placed in the patient's mouth with digital impressions and moved around the affected area — like waving a magic wand.

Cost-effectiveness. CAD/CAM technology eliminates several outsourcing costs for your dental professional, and these savings may be passed onto the patient. Be sure to ask about your options and the associated costs.

Is CAD/CAM Dental Work Right For You?

Not every tooth can be treated with CAD/CAM dentistry, so talk to your dental professional about your best options. Because precision and fit are essential for your restoration or prosthesis, the practitioner may prefer using the conventional laboratory method for complex fabrications. Start by asking your dentist about CAD/CAM technology and how it may impact your restoration appointment.

by Colgate

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What is a Pediatric Dentist?

Pediatric dentists are dedicated to the oral health of children from infancy through the teen years. They have the experience and qualifications to care for a child’s teeth, gums, and mouth throughout the various stages of childhood.

Children begin to get their baby teeth during the first 6 months of life. By age 6 or 7 years, they start to lose their first set of teeth, which eventually are replaced by secondary, permanent teeth. Without proper dental care, children face possible oral decay and disease that can cause a lifetime of pain and complications. Today, early childhood dental caries—an infectious disease—is 5 times more common in children than asthma and 7 times more common than hay fever.

What Kind of Training Do Pediatric Dentists Have?

Pediatric dentists have completed at least:

Four years of dental school

Two additional years of residency training in dentistry for infants, children, teens, and children with special needs

What Types of Treatments Do Pediatric Dentists Provide?

Pediatric dentists provide comprehensive oral health care that includes the following:

Infant oral health exams, which include risk assessment for caries in mother and child

Preventive dental care including cleaning and fluoride treatments, as well as nutrition and diet recommendations

Habit counseling (for example, pacifier use and thumb sucking)

Early assessment and treatment for straightening teeth and correcting an improper bite (orthodontics)

Repair of tooth cavities or defects

Diagnosis of oral conditions associated with diseases such as diabetes, congenital heart defect, asthma, hay fever, and attention deficit/ hyperactivity disorder

Management of gum diseases and conditions including ulcers, short frenulae, mucoceles, and pediatric periodontal disease

Care for dental injuries (for example, fractured, displaced, or knocked-out teeth)

Where Can I Find A Pediatric Dentist?

Pediatric dentists practice in a variety of locations including private practices, dental schools, and medical centers. Your pediatrician can help you find a pediatric dentist near your home.

Pediatric Dentists — The Best Care For Children

Children are not just small adults. They are not always able to be patient and cooperative during a dental exam. Pediatric dentists know how to examine and treat children in ways that make them comfortable. In addition, pediatric dentists use specially designed equipment in offices that are arranged and decorated with children in mind.

A pediatric dentist offers a wide range of treatment options, as well as expertise and training to care for your child’s teeth, gums, and mouth. When your pediatrician suggests that your child receive a dental exam, you can be assured that a pediatric dentist will provide the best possible care.

by Healthy Children

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The Silent Problems That May Be Going On In Your Mouth

Not all issues that affect the mouth and your general oral health start as pain.

We are taught from an early age that proper oral health is maintaining healthy teeth. The simple acts of brushing and flossing are instilled in us so that we maintain our “pearly whites” – yet, oral health is much more than clean teeth. It involves the gums and their supporting tissues, the palate, the lining of the mouth and throat, the tongue, the lips, the salivary glands, the chewing muscles, the nerves, and the bones of the upper and lower jaws.

Recent research has indicated possible associations between chronic oral infections and diabetes, heart and lung disease, stroke, and low birth weight or premature births. In other words, oral health refers to the health of our mouth and, ultimately, supports and reflects the health of the entire body.

An important first step in combating the two leading causes of poor oral health, dental caries and periodontal disease, is understanding that tooth loss is often the result of disease or injury, rather than an inevitable consequence of aging.

Educational programs emphasizing the importance of oral health promotion/disease prevention are also necessary to raise awareness and discourage the lack of concern regarding oral health. Proper oral health is vital to a productive and healthy life.

Messages that encourage lowering sucrose intake, reducing acidic beverage consumption, and routine brushing and flossing teeth should continue to be disseminated through all sources of media – including dental literature, television, newspapers, magazines, radio, and the Internet. It should be incorporated into the education curriculum targeting children, caregivers, and communities.

by K1 Dental

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Reasons why all my teeth hurt suddenly

If you feel a flash of pain in your gums or a sudden toothache, you’re not alone. A survey by the American Family Physician revealed that 22 percent of adults have experienced pain in their teeth, gums, or jaw within the last six months.

Two of the most likely explanations are that you’ve developed tooth sensitivity or that one of your teeth is cracked or infected. The good news is most causes of sudden tooth discomfort are easily treatable by your dentist.

Here are 10 possible reasons why your teeth might be giving you pain, and when to see a doctor.

1. Exposure to extreme heat or cold

Tooth sensitivity is caused by worn tooth enamel or exposed nerves in your teeth. When you eat or drink something with an extremely low or high temperature, you may feel a sudden, sharp flash of pain.

2. Gum recession

Gums are the layer of pink tissue that cover bone and surround the root of the tooth to help protect the nerve endings of your teeth. As you age, gum tissue often begins to wear , causing gum recession.

This recession leaves the roots of your teeth exposed, as well as leaving you more vulnerable to gum disease and tooth infections. If your teeth are suddenly more sensitive than they used to be, gum recession could be the culprit.

3. Enamel (dentin) erosion

It’s estimated that at least 12 percentTrusted Source of people have some form of “dentin hypersensitivity” that causes them discomfort when they eat. This kind of sensitivity can be caused by eating a highly acidic diet, brushing your teeth too hard, and other factors.

As a result, the enamel that coats and protects your teeth begins to wear away and is not replaced. This can lead to sharp, stabbing pain that sends shivers up your spine when you bite into certain foods.

4. Tooth decay (cavity)

Tooth decay, also referred to as a cavity, might be the reason why your teeth have suddenly started bothering you. Tooth decay can linger on the sides or tops of your tooth enamel without being noticed for some time.

Once the decay begins to progress toward an infection, you may startexperiencing pain in your tooth.

5. Gum infection

Gum disease, also called periodontal disease, affects more than 47 percent of adults over the age of 30Trusted Source. Gum disease is called gingivitis in its early stages, and some people don’t even know that they have it. Sensitive teeth and gums can be a sign of escalating gum disease.

6. Cracked tooth or crown

You may not be surprised to learn that a cracked tooth or crown can cause tooth pain and sensitivity. But there are cases when you may have a tooth cracked ever so slightly, so that it causes pain but is nearly impossible to see.

7. Sinus infection

One symptom of a sinus infection is pain in your teeth and in your jaw. As your sinuses become inflamed and filled with pressure from the infection, they can compress the nerve endings of your teeth.

8. Grinding or clenching jaws

Grinding your teeth and clenching your jaws can lead to chronic tooth sensitivity, as you wear away at the enamel on your teeth.

While many people clench or grind their teeth from time to time, high-stress circumstances or poor sleep can lead to you increasing this habit without you realizing it, resulting in tooth pain that seems mysterious.

9. Dental procedures

Recent fillings or tooth work involving drilling can temporarily make the nerve endings of your teeth more sensitive. Sensitivity from a tooth filling procedure may last up to two weeks.

10. Teeth bleaching products

Using whitening strips, bleaching gels, or having an in-office teeth-whitening procedure can put you at a higher riskTrusted Source of tooth sensitivity. Pain in your teeth that’s caused by teeth bleaching is often temporary and will usually subside if you stop using whitening products.

by Healthline

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How Often Should You Go To The Dentist?

One hundred million Americans don't see their dentist every year, even though visiting the dentist regularly is essential in maintaining your oral health. With that being said, you have probably received a text, email, or phone call at some point in your life, reminding you that you are due for your 6-month visit with your dentist. You might be wondering, "how often should I really go to the dentist?"

The typical twice-a-year recommendation to visit the dentist originated from an advertisement for toothpaste, and there's little to no research that supports it. The twice-yearly rule isn't necessarily the best option for everyone. Read on to learn more about how often you should get dental checkups, why you might need to visit a dentist more often, why going to the dentist is essential, and what you can do to stay healthy and minimize your visits.

How Often Should You Visit the Dentist?

While it's true that visiting the dentist twice a year is a good rule of thumb for many people, the truth is that you have your own unique smile needs. So it depends on your oral hygiene, habits, and individual medical conditions.

Some people only need to visit the dentist once or twice are year, while others may need to go more often. So, always remember to ask your dentist when you should schedule your next appointment. And don't worry! They'll probably tell you when they want to see you next anyway.

Who Should Go to the Dentist More Often?

Some people need to visit the dentist more than twice a year. But who? People with a greater risk of dental disease and other health conditions may need to see the dentist every three months or more. This higher-risk group includes:

Pregnant women



People with gum disease

People with a weak immune response

People who are prone to cavities or plaque build-up

Why is Going to the Dentist Important?

Even if you brush twice a day and floss daily, you still need to visit a dentist regularly! Your dentist and dental hygienist are trained to check for problems that you might not see or feel on your own. Some things, like cavities or gum disease, aren't even visible or painful until they're more advanced. When it comes to oral cancer, dentists and hygienists are often the first to find it for many patients.

Because the issue might either be preventable or more easily treated when caught early (like oral cancer), seeing a dentist regularly matters. With regular visits, your dentist will find solutions to any red flags that will save you time, discomfort, and even money in the long run.

What Can You Do to Keep Dentist Appointments to a Minimum?

The best thing you can do to keep your dental visits to a minimum is to maintain good oral hygiene. So, make sure to brush your teeth twice a day and clean between your teeth daily using floss, interdental brushes, or an oral irrigator. And guess what? If your dentist doesn't see any cavities or signs of gingivitis for several years, they might even lengthen the time between your visits.

Now you know that how often you need to visit the dentist depends on your unique smile situation. For some people, like smokers and diabetics, it may be more often. But no matter what, visiting the dentist is a preventative measure that improves your overall health and makes things easier for you in the long run. If you keep up with your daily hygiene, your dentist may even cut back on your required dental appointments. Remember to always follow your dentist's advice in terms of your next appointment. And if it's been a while, it's time to respond to that text, call, or email from your dentists' office for your 6-month dental check-in.

by Colgate

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What’s the Most Effective Way to Clean Your Tongue

Studies suggest that cleaning your tongue regularly can reduce unwanted mouth bacteria that can lead to bad breath, a coated tongue, plaque buildup, and other oral health conditions.

Some researchTrusted Source says tongue scrapers are the most effective tool to use. However, you can also use toothbrushes and mouthwashes to clean your tongue.

Tongue scrapers are the most effective

Both tongue scrapers and toothbrushes can eliminate bacteria on the tongue, but most studies have found that using a tongue scraper is more effective than using a toothbrush.

A 2006 review examinedTrusted Source two studies on tongue cleaning and bad breath and found that tongue scrapers and cleaners were more effective than toothbrushes in reducing the volatile sulfur compounds that cause breath odors.

Here’s how to clean your tongue using a tongue scraper:

Select a tongue scraping instrument. This may be plastic or metal. It may be bent in half making a V shape or have a handle with a rounded edge at the top. Shop online for tongue scrapers.

Stick out your tongue as far as you can.

Place your tongue scraper toward the back of your tongue.

Press the scraper on your tongue and move it toward the front of your tongue while applying pressure.

Run the tongue scraper under warm water to clear any debris and bacteria from the device. Spit out any excess saliva that may have built up during the tongue scraping.

Repeat steps 2 to 5 several more times. As needed, adjust your tongue scraper placement and the pressure you apply to it to prevent a gag reflex.

Clean the tongue scraper and store it for the next use. You can scrape your tongue once or twice a day. If you gag during the process, you may want to scrape your tongue before eating breakfast to avoid vomiting.

How to clean your tongue with a toothbrush

Although using a toothbrush may be less effective than using a tongue scraper, you may find it easier to use — especially if you’re already brushing your teeth twice a day.

Here’s how to clean your tongue with a toothbrush:

Choose a soft-bristle toothbrush; shop for brushes online.

Stick out your tongue as far as it will reach.

Position your toothbrush at the back of the tongue.

Brush lightly forward and backward along your tongue.

Spit out saliva that appears during the brushing and rinse out the toothbrush with warm water.

Clean your tongue as often as you brush your teeth.

You may want to brush with 1 part hydrogen peroxide and 5 parts water once a day if your tongue is discolored. You should rinse your mouth out with water following this type of cleaning.

Can oral mouth rinses clean your tongue?

Mouth rinses — especially when combined with toothbrushing — can help clean your tongue and other parts of your mouth.

Consider using a therapeutic mouthwash containing active ingredients to destroy bacteria in your mouth that may cause bad breath and other conditions. You can find mouthwashes over the counter or online.

You can also ask your doctor or dentist to prescribe one for you. Follow the mouthwash’s instructions for best oral care.

Benefits of cleaning your tongue

Several studies point to the benefits of cleaning your tongue:

Reduces sulfur compounds that cause bad breath

A 2004 study in the Journal of Periodontology concluded that using a tongue scraper helped reduce volatile sulfur compounds that cause bad breath. A tongue scraper removed 75 percent of these compounds and a toothbrush removed 45 percent of them.

Reduces bacteria on the tongue

A 2014 study in BMC Oral Health found that tongue cleaning reduced bacteria on the tongue but that levels only stayed low if the tongue cleaning occurred regularly. The article concluded that you should both brush your teeth and clean your tongue regularly for good oral health.

Contributes to a fresher-feeling mouth

The American Dental Association does not equate tongue cleaning with the reduction of bad breath, but it does conclude that cleaning your tongue can contribute to a fresher-feeling mouth that you might enjoy.

Reduces plaque

A 2013 studyTrusted Source of plaque in children in the International Journal of Clinical Pediatric Dentistry found that regular tongue cleaning by either a toothbrush or scraper reduced plaque levels.

by Health Line

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Dentist Specialist: Which Professional Treats What?

If your dentist has recently told you that they want to refer you to a specialist, you most likely have questions about what this specialist does! Your general dentist and dental hygienist are the primary care providers for your basic dental needs. These include bi-annual checkups and routine cleanings. But, sometimes, you need specific dental treatments that require the attention of a specialist. So you may be wondering, what is a dental specialist, and what are the different types?

The American Dental Association recognizes various specialties within dentistry. Most receive the same undergraduate education and graduate from accredited dental programs. Once licensed as dentists, they continue their education for two to four years to achieve recognition as dental specialists. Check out these dental professionals to learn more about who your general dentist may refer you to and why!


You probably consider your general dentist and dental hygienists to be the keepers of your oral health. But did you know there's a whole specialty related to the care of the structures surrounding your teeth? Periodontists study and treat conditions that affect the teeth's stability. The bone, gum tissue, and ligaments in your mouth all play vital roles in holding your teeth in place, so they must be protected. When you get gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, it can advance to a stage that requires surgery. That's where periodontists come in! They also complete root planing and scaling procedures and manage dental implants, as noted by the American Academy of Periodontology.

Pediatric Dentists

These dentists research, advocate for and promote oral health for children. They specialize in working with children and teens below 18 and people with special needs. They're like general dentists in that they provide the same type of services, like checkups and cleanings, but for kids. To keep their visitors engaged and happy through their dental experience, pediatric dentists usually decorate their offices in fun and playful ways. Maybe we should ask our general dentists to get back to the fun decorations too!


Endodontics is the field that studies the blood and nerve supply within the roots of our teeth. This tissue (dental pulp) sometimes needs unique treatments to eliminate infections or repair injuries. Root canals are the most common procedure that endodontists perform.


Orthodontists work to align your jaw and straighten your teeth to improve their function and longevity. You may have already visited one as a child to get that beautiful smile with straight teeth you have now! These specialists aid in the growth of your mouth and jaw through various orthopedic devices. They specialize in braces, retainers, aligners, and headgear. Many of us see an orthodontist for a few years when we need to straighten our teeth, whether as kids or adults.


Prosthodontists specialize in preparing and making various tooth-replacement restorations. They receive an extra few years of training to work in this field. You may go to a prosthodontist if you're looking to restore or repair your smile with dentures, bridges, or implant crowns.

Dental Hygienists

As mentioned above, dental hygienists and general dentists work as a team to take care of your general oral health. Dental hygienists are often your first line of defense for fighting tooth decay and gum disease! They remove plaque (biofilm) at your bi-annual appointments and provide the essential knowledge of teaching you how to take care of your oral care at home. They offer a wide range of services that vary from state to state.

Oral and Maxillofacial Professionals

While this grouping of specialists sounds like a mouthful, what they do for your smile is more straightforward. They assess and diagnose diseases that occur in the face, mouth, and neck. They also create and complete treatment plans for these diseases. Three significant concentrations within the field of oral and maxillofacial dental professionals include:

Oral pathologists specialize in injuries in the head and neck. They identify, manage, and sometimes treat these diseases. For example, if your general dental finds a lump or bump in your mouth or jaw, they may refer you to an oral pathologist. The pathologist will then meet with you for an assessment and further testing.

Oral radiologists interpret dental X-rays to diagnose specific head and neck conditions. Think of them as similar to medical radiologists. They use radiant energy to produce and analyze radiographs to detect disease.

Oral surgeons are tooth extraction specialists. While this may not be your favorite specialist to visit, they perform vital functions! They focus on implants and facial surgeries, devise treatment plans, and create prostheses for patients who lose parts of their mouth, head, neck, or jaw. While this definition may sound alarming at first, oral surgeons provide even the most routine surgeries, like wisdom tooth removal!

The field of dentistry has dramatically improved and diversified over the past decades. With these various specialties, you're able to see a trained professional who focuses on the specific issue at hand. Their goal is to collaborate, research, and advance the art and science of dentistry. 

by Colgate

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What Happens at a Dental Prophylaxis Appointment?

If you haven't visited your dentist and dental hygienist in a while, it may be time for a dental prophylaxis appointment. This type of appointment is a standard preventive measure in dental medicine, which involves cleaning your teeth and inspecting your mouth for signs of any potential issues. While we'd all love it if our at-home oral care routine would be enough to keep our smiles perfect, seeing your dental professionals is crucial. So you may be wondering, what is dental prophylaxis, and why do I need it? Here's what you can expect from this type of dental visit.

What to Expect During Your Dental Prophylaxis Appointment

A prophylaxis dental appointment is a routine, preventive procedure. Your dental hygienist will update your medical history to see if there have been any changes in your health, such as pregnancy, new diagnosis, medications, or other updates. As a preventive measure, they will also do a physical and visual examination of your mouth and neck to screen for oral cancer.


X-rays help your dental professional discover potential oral health problems that aren't visible to the naked eye, like cavities, for example. When your dental professional decides it's time for you to get X-rays, you will probably get bite-wing X-rays of your molar and premolar teeth. Some dental practices also take pictures of the anterior incisor teeth, which are in the front of your bite.

The American Dental Association (ADA) and the Food and Drug Administration created dental radiographic examination guidelines to help dentists with their professional judgment on how best to use this type of imaging. The ADA also recommends that your dentist have a conversation with you about their plan for X-rays so that you can make decisions together.

If you have excellent oral health and regularly see your dental professional, they may recommend X-rays less often than if you're at risk for oral health issues. Factors that dental professionals consider when determining the frequency at which you should get X-rays include the following:


Oral health

Risk for disease

If you already have signs of oral disease

Discomfort in your mouth

Periodontal Probing

Once your dental hygienist updates your medical history, they will visually examine your gum tissue and conduct a periodontal probing. This involves measuring the depth of your gum tissue with a tool known as a periodontal probe. It's crucial to measure gum tissue because our gums should fit snug around our teeth. Due to poor oral hygiene, age, or medical conditions, our gums may pull away from our teeth, creating pockets where food particles and bacteria can get stuck.

Besides periodontal probing, your dental hygienist will inspect your teeth. This is to alert your dentist of any areas that should be checked for potential tooth decay. Lastly, they will perform a dental cleaning using special instruments (ultrasonic and hand) to remove plaque and tartar from your teeth and beneath your gumline. Your hygienist will also polish your teeth to remove tooth stains and then clean between your teeth with floss (also known as interdental cleaning).

Ongoing Oral Care Recommendations

Your dental hygienist is an excellent source of knowledge for questions and concerns surrounding at-home oral care. They can make recommendations for taking better care of your mouth and demonstrate proper oral care techniques. They'll remind you to brush your teeth twice per day, floss once per day, and use a mouthwash. Following your dental hygienist's work, your dentist will then perform a full examination of your mouth. This includes examining your teeth, gums, and the rest of your mouth for signs of disease, and reviewing any X-rays that were taken.

Why Dental Prophylaxis is Necessary

If you take good care of your teeth at home, you may be wondering why your dentist says you need this appointment. Many dental problems may go unnoticed in their early stages. They may not cause pain or have visible signs. However, a dental prophylaxis appointment can help your dental professional diagnose these problems at an early stage! For example, it's common not to feel pain from a cavity when it first forms. But your dentist will most likely be able to find that cavity in your prophylaxis appointment and repair it before it gets larger and causes you discomfort.

How Often to Do Dental Prophylaxis

The frequency of attending dental prophylaxis treatments is not a "one size fits all" situation. Some people need to see their dental professionals for a prophylaxis appointment twice a year. However, certain people should follow a different schedule. If your teeth and gums are very healthy, you may not need to go as often. On the other hand, if you have a high risk of dental disease, you may need to up your frequency.

It may be smart for people in high-risk groups to attend a dental prophylaxis appointment every three or four months. These groups include people who smoke, people with gum disease, and people who often get cavities. Pregnant women and people with diabetes or weakened immune systems may also need more appointments than just twice a year.

Have a conversation with your dental professionals about how often you should schedule these visits. They'll want to know of any recent changes to your overall health, not just your teeth, that may affect the frequency at which they see you.

A dental prophylaxis appointment is meant to serve as an essential preventive measure for keeping your mouth healthy and your smile bright. With an oral examination, X-rays, periodontal probing, teeth cleaning, and a relationship with your dental professional in which you feel comfortable discussing your questions and concerns, you are on the ideal track to keeping your mouth as healthy as it can be!

by Colgate

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How To Get Your Teeth Clean Before The Dentist

You might be diligent as far as your oral hygiene goes, but even the most frequent flosser forgets every now and again. You may not even think about the quality of your dental hygiene until it comes time for your scheduled dental visit. So, whether you're a habitual brusher or you've been known to skip a session, put your best smile forward and learn how to get your teeth clean before the dentist to ensure the best checkup possible. Use these techniques and your dentist and dental hygienist are sure to be impressed.

Proper Brushing

Brushing your teeth is one thing, but brushing them properly gives you completely different results and clean teeth for your checkup. A quick once-over with your toothbrush won't cut it, so schedule a little extra time to give your smile the attention it deserves. Here are the steps for proper toothbrushing:

Squeeze a strip of toothpaste onto a soft-bristled brush. Avoid using hard-bristled brushes, which can be too abrasive and damage tooth enamel.

Start with the toothbrush at a 45-degree angle, beginning at your gumline. Gently brush your gums back and forth before moving up the surface of your teeth.

Focus first on the outside surfaces of your teeth, and then make sure to clean the insides, as well.

Reach back and brush all sides of each of your molars, making sure to brush all the way to the back of your mouth.

Don't forget to brush the biting surfaces of all teeth to clean the pits and crevices.

Gently brush your tongue to remove lingering bacteria, film, or debris for fresher breath and a cleaner mouth.


Along with proper twice-daily brushing, making flossing at least once a day a priority is important. Brushing is great but can leave food particles, and plaque stuck in the small spaces between teeth. To impress your dentist, give your teeth an excellent flossing before your appointment. Here are some steps for proper flossing technique:

Stretch a piece of floss between two fingers and wind the floss around your pointer fingers for a secure hold.

Start between your back two bottom teeth, gently slide the floss down between each space and then move it upward to remove the floss and debris.

Continue the process and work toward the front of your mouth and around to the other side.

Switch to your top teeth until every space between your teeth has been properly cleaned.

Make sure you are using a new section of the floss each time you go between two teeth, so you don't transfer debris from space to space.


Finally, put the finishing touch on your deep cleaning by swishing with a mouthwash to rinse and disinfect your mouth. It'll remove any lingering bacteria and ensure that you have fresh breath for your checkup. Pour a small amount in a small cup and swish it forcefully between your teeth and around your mouth for 30-60 seconds. Spit out the mouthwash, and you're ready for your dental closeup.

Your dental hygienist may also ask you to do a pre-procedural rinse before your cleaning. This step can significantly reduce the number of microorganisms (bacteria) that are introduced during professional dental cleanings or tooth restorations. A simple 30-to-60-second rinse can reduce contamination on dental equipment, dental personnel, and surfaces in the operatory.

Visiting the dentist should be anything but nerve-racking, but if your oral hygiene has been less than exemplary, you might be feeling a little nervous. By knowing how to get your teeth clean before the dentist, you can be sure that you'll have the best appointment possible. A deep clean is the key to a smooth dental appointment and the perfect way to renew your commitment to good oral hygiene.

by Colgate

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Diet sodas and meth cause similar dental problems

Most people understand that soda is bad for their teeth; however, few realize just how sugary these beverages really are. The average can of soda contains enough high fructose corn syrup to equal about 10 teaspoons of sugar. High amounts of sugar fuel plaque buildup which promotes tooth decay.

In an attempt to sidestep this problem, many people drink diet sodas, made from artificial sweeteners. Unfortunately, a new study suggests that these beverages aren’t any better for our teeth.

Similar to Illicit Drugs

Research indicates that diet sodas may be worse than traditional sugary sodas when it comes to harming teeth. Published in General Dentistry magazine, the study determined that sugar-free sodas are actually more acidic than typical sodas. In fact, researchers say that diet sodas are so acidic, they harm teeth about as bad as methamphetamine or crack cocaine.

What’s the Similarity?

Many illicit drugs damage teeth by reducing the saliva in a user’s mouth. Without this saliva to rinse and protect against plaque build-up, tooth decay often follows. According to the researchers who conducted the study, diet soda has a similar effect because it overwhelms teeth with more acid than saliva can protect against.

Our Choices Matter

Tooth decay is big problem that can have big consequences. Over time, plaque buildup can cause cavities, which can ultimately result in painful, costly treatments. To keep your teeth healthy, avoid acidic beverages. Additionally, maintain regular dental checkups and cleanings to ensure that small cavities don’t become big dental problems.

Nip it in the Bud

Cavities can be prevented using dental sealants, good dental hygiene, and regular check-ups. Unfortunately, many people don’t even realize they have cavities until it’s too late.

by Smile Columbia Dentistry

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How to prepare for dental procedures

Whether it's tooth extraction or a root canal, few people look forward to dental procedures. But it's likely that, at some point, you'll need to have some type of treatment beyond the normal cleaning.

More than 15 million root canals are performed annually, according to the American Association of Endodontists. About five million people have at least one wisdom tooth removed every year, per a study published in the American Journal of Public Health. No matter what the reason is for a dental procedure, there are a few things you can do in advance to get yourself ready for it.

Ask Questions

Asking your dentist or oral surgeon to explain things before certain dental procedures can help put your mind at ease and better prepare you to stay relaxed. One helpful question to ask is "how long will the procedure take?" Knowing the length of surgery, for example, will demistify certain aspects of it while letting you coordinate with the person who is picking you up.

You might also ask about your anesthesia options. During wisdom teeth extraction or a root canal, your dentist may give you the option of receiving a local anesthetic, meaning you'll be awake but unable to feel anything; or general anesthesia, meaning you'll be fully unconscious.

Ask for the details of the procedure, as well. If you're having your wisdom teeth taken out, know how many are being removed, any potential complications and if the procedure is being performed as a preventative measure or due to damage they've caused to other teeth. If you're having a root canal, you might want to ask about the risk for complications and when you'll experience relief.

Follow Your Dentist's Instructions

Along with asking for details about your procedure, it's just as important that you follow your dentist's instructions. Having asked you about any medications you take, he or she is sure to let you know if you need to avoid any of them before the day of your procedure. If you have certain conditions or proneness to infection, however, your dentist may prescribe you antibiotics beforehand. Depending on the type of anesthetic you receive during the procedure, you might need to avoid drinking or eating, as well – usually starting the night before treatment. Unsure about what you're supposed to do on the days or hours leading up to it? Remember you can always call your dentist and ask.

Check with Your Insurance

If you plan on using your dental insurance to cover your procedure, you should contact your provider in advance to make sure they can – and determine how much coverage they provide. Many insurers will give you a pre-treatment estimate to give you have a general idea of what your costs will be. Because there can be confusion about whether oral surgery is medical or dental in nature, contacting your insurance provider in advance is ultimately a good idea so that you know you are using the right policy.

Get Ready to Recover

Preparing for your recovery is just as important as preparing for the surgery itself. You'll be pretty "out of it" after the process, even if you've had only a local anesthetic, so you'll want to arrange to have a relative or friend take you home from the dentist's office. It's also helpful to learn about any medications you'll need to take after the surgery, so that you can stock up before. You might consider asking your dentist for any prescriptions in advance, too.

Although you do want to avoid brushing for about 24 hours after having teeth removed, jumping back into a regular oral care routine after a procedure is generally recommended. Use a brush with soft bristles, fluoride toothpaste and floss daily. Ask your dentist for more specific advice on caring for your mouth afterward, and remember that surgery and treatment is a much smaller hassle when you realize its benefits to your mouth and health are worth it.

by Colgate

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Views: 46

What are the leading dental issues that you should never ignore?

It is important to understand that dental issues should not be ignored at any cost.


You made the dentist appointment, but it is still time that you can discuss your issues. In the meantime, rinse your mouth with warm water, ask the dentist to suggest you a pain reliever, floss so that the food present in between teeth can be taken out. In case you notice pus or swelling or have a fever then it might be the sign there is a serious issue like gum disease. It is important to consult the dentist on time.

Stained teeth

To remove stains from the teeth you need to use the right method. Your teeth can get discolored due to trauma, tobacco, or medications. Your dentist can suggest you the whitening agent which has a special light attached to it. Another option is to use the plastic tray or gel which you can buy from the store. With the whitening rinses and toothpaste, the stains are going to be removed.


Cavities are extremely bad for the teeth. It is a sticky material which is known as plaque & it starts building on the teeth which affect the teeth’s outer shell & it is known as enamel.

To reduce the occurrence of this condition, make sure to brush the teeth 2 times a day, floss regularly, use a mouthwash, and reduce the intake of snacks. Apart from that, you need to ensure that you visit the dental appointment on time.

Impacted teeth

Impacted teeth are the adult teeth that did not erupt properly. The problem happens when a tooth is stuck between another or it can be a soft tissue of bone. If the problem is not causing trouble, then the dentist might suggest you leave it like that. If this situation is troubling you then the dentist will remove it.

Chipped tooth

The chipped tooth comes under the category of dental injury. The chip can occur due to an accident. If the condition is severe then crown or bonding is preferred. If the pulp condition is severe then a root canal is suggested to you and after that crown or veneer is done.

Cracked tooth

While playing football even if you wear a mouthguard, or chewing you do not know you had a cracked molar. It depends on your condition, what option can actually prevent this situation. To prevent the severity of the situation, you will be given the option of crowns. If there is time to see the dentist, then it is better to chew from the other side.

 Apart from these, there are other common dental issues which are mentioned below and you can ask the dentist what will be best for your condition:

Sensitive to cold

Hyperdontia (More than normal teeth)

Crooked teeth

Teeth gap

Gum issue

Grinding or clenching the teeth

Problem flossing

Wisdom teeth issue

by The Bests Guide

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10 Signs You Have the Best Dentist

Many of us find bedside manner, a clean and welcoming environment, and an organized appointment system important when considering the medical doctors we go to. But have you ever considered what makes a good dentist and if your dentist lives up to these standards? With so many dentists to choose from, how do you know you've chosen the right one? It's helpful to outline what makes a quality dentist when considering your current care or deciding if you want to find a new dentist. If you're wondering whether or not yours is top of the line, we believe these are ten qualities that make a good dentist:

1. Actively Listens to You

A good dentist wants to help you, but the best dentists use their listening skills as much as they use their technical skills. A great doctor takes the time to listen to your concerns, never rushes to leave treatment, and will work with you to alleviate anything that might make you feel uncomfortable, like if you have fears about dental work.

2. Educates You

Because you didn't go to dental school, you rely on your dentist to educate you on oral health, medical issues, good oral health habits, and treatment options for potential problems. An ideal dentist is happy to take the time to explain your options and work with you to enhance your confidence. This could range from teaching you proper brushing techniques to going over the step-by-step of a potential procedure you need.

3. Respects Your Time and Resources

Thoughtful dentists are punctual and consider your bottom line when suggesting treatment. They have a staff who calls or texts to remind you of an upcoming appointment and helps you schedule future appointments with enough time for you to plan.

4. Keeps a Clean Office

The American Dental Association (ADA) suggests checking to ensure your dentist's office is "clean, neat and orderly," and that all dental instruments are sterilized. If you notice things like old gloves and dirty instruments in the dental operatory, your dentist could be contaminating the examination room, which spreads germs and can make you and other patients sick.

5. Only Promotes What Is Necessary

Good dentists won't try to upsell you on products and treatments you don't absolutely need and that you didn't ask for before an examination. A good dentist will have a team who helps you figure out what your dental insurance could partially or fully cover for procedures or products they want you to have.

6. Gets to Know You

When your dentist takes the time to get to know you, they can provide better care options that work according to your medical history. They can also help you with underlying issues that could go undetected in a quick, impersonal visit. When your dentist greets you warmly and asks about your family or work, you may be thinking these are signs your dentist likes you. They're also just signs that you have a quality dentist who cares about you and wants you to be comfortable during your dental appointment.

7. Values a Long-Term Relationship

The best dentist invests in making you a long-term patient. This means following up when it's time for an appointment, scheduling regular screenings or X-rays, and making you and your family feel recognized when you're in the office. If your dentist treats your appointment like a one-time job, it might be time to look for another dentist.

8. Cares About Their Staff

If you work in an office, it's probably a funny concept to think of a dentist as a boss, managing staff. But even in medical and dental practices, there can be a hierarchy of staff. It's worth observing how your dentist interacts with coworkers because it gives you an idea of their management style and the mood among the team working with you. It's a good sign to see a dentist who has a caring and passionate team around them because it means they've done something right to attract top talent!

9. Follows Up With You

Some dental procedures can be long and arduous, leaving you feeling out of sorts for a few hours afterward. A great dentist will follow up with you after a long or complicated procedure to make sure you're improving as expected and that no complications hinder your recovery.

10. Values You as a Patient

The best dentists have a way of letting their patients know they care about them personally. Whether it's space they give you to ask questions, their thorough examination at dental checkups, or walking you through different options for a procedure you need, your dentist can show they value working with you in many ways.

Choosing a dentist isn't a decision to take lightly. They should see you as a patient for life, not once or twice. The best dentist always gives you the care that you and your family deserve. If you go through the above list and find that your dentist is missing several of these qualities, that may be a sign you have a bad dentist. But luckily, there are plenty of dentists to choose from! You can visit the American Dental Association's tool, ask friends and family who they trust, and do more research online for dentists in your area. What matters most is feeling confident that your dentist is a good fit for you and your family. You should feel comfortable going to them for regular checkups and any procedures or issues that arise. If your dentist exhibits the above characteristics, they can make your dental appointment a very positive experience and even have you looking forward to the next time you see them!

by Colgate

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Views: 190

What Happens If I Don’t Floss My Teeth?

If you do not floss your teeth, all sorts of problems will arise. Some of these problems will be limited to your mouth. Others will extend to other parts of your body. In fact, the failure to floss can lead to significant health issues that jeopardize your well-being.

Below, we take a closer look at what happens when you fail to floss.

Harmful Plaque Will Accumulate

It does not matter if people brush their teeth three times a day and rinse with mouthwash following every meal. The plaque will gradually build up if people do not floss their teeth. Food particles will accumulate between the teeth. Germs and sticky bacteria in film form, known as plaque, will thrive. Plaque can build up to the point that it not only looks quite unsightly but also causes other health issues to boot.

Your Breath Will Smell Bad

When people brush their teeth, the bristles of the brush do not move down between the teeth. Alternatively, flossing will pull out all the bacteria, plaque and food particles from these difficult-to-reach spaces. These are the nasty smelling bits of food that people need out of their mouths as quickly as possible. If the bits of food remain in place by the individual skipping flossing, then the individual's breath will inevitably smell terrible.

The Chances of Gingivitis Will Increase

As time progresses, more and more medical studies suggest proper oral health care including consistent flossing will prevent tooth decay as well as disease, dementia, diabetes and gum disease. If gum disease is left untreated, it will likely lead to periodontitis that gradually leads to bone resorption as well as tooth loss.

The bottom line is brushing in and of itself will not get rid of all of that built-up plaque below the gum line and near the teeth. Consider the fact that upwards of 700 unique strains of bacteria exist within the plaque. Flossing is the only way to eliminate this plaque. Otherwise, if the plaque is left alone, it will spur gum disease.

Additional Issues Stemming From the Failure to Floss

If swelling occurs within the mouth due to untreated gum disease or another issue stemming from the failure to floss, it can cause an array of additional health issues like inflammation that leads to heart disease. Failing to floss can also spur lung disease as dental plaque within the mouth causes the buildup of organisms that cause pneumonia.

The lack of flossing can even lead to diabetes. A study performed at the University of California shows elderly individuals who failed to floss at least once per day were nearly two-thirds as likely to develop dementia.

Failing to Floss can Compromise Your Appearance

The failure to floss really can ruin your smile. Flossing gets food that is trapped between the teeth out of those tight spaces for good. If this food is not removed from between the teeth with flossing, those teeth will gradually shift. Try to floss at least once per day. Ideally, you will floss after each meal.

by Thanasas Family Dental Care

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What Causes Tooth Enamel Defects In Children?

Almost 40 percent of baby front teeth have an enamel defect that can affect the appearance of the teeth and also make them susceptible to decay. Enamel defects can have several causes.

Tooth enamel begins to form before birth and can be affected by the health of the mother and the health of the child after birth. Primary incisors begin to mineralize, or harden, around 15 weeks after conception, and the enamel finishes maturing when the baby is two months old. The primary canine teeth begin to mineralize 19 weeks after conception and finish their enamel maturation process when the baby is nine months old.

Enamel hypoplasia occurs when a tooth has less enamel than normal. It can appear as a small pit or dent in a tooth or discoloration with excess white, yellow, or brown. Severe enamel hypoplasia can cause the entire tooth to appear small and misshapen. Enamel hypoplasia can occur in both primary and permanent teeth and requires immediate treatment because it can cause tooth sensitivity and cavities.

Over 75 percent of enamel defects in children are believed to be caused by developmental issues. Most developmental enamel defects are found in the middle third of the upper incisors along the neonatal line, a faint line in the tooth enamel caused by insufficient calcium.

Defects can have many other causes, such as premature birth, facial trauma at birth, infection in early childhood, malnutrition, illness or drug use during pregnancy, or genetic problems that affect enamel formation. Less than 25 percent of enamel defects in baby teeth are the result of minor facial trauma or pressure, which can occur during birth and cause a reduced thickness of enamel and hypoplastic spots on the canine teeth.

One option to treat enamel defects is to cover the area with a bonded microfilled composite resin that matches the color of the rest of the tooth. This is often the best treatment for very young children.

Another option to treat enamel defects in children is microabrasion, which uses acids and abrasives to remove dental stains and surface defects. The procedure can remove superficial enamel dysmineralization defects and decalcification lesions in children as young as 6.

by CT Pediatric Dentistry

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Signs That Gluten is Causing Your Child’s Dental Problems

Celiac Disease is an autoimmune disease. It affects infants, children and adults and results in a permanent intolerance to gluten, a protein found in wheat, rye and barley. 

While not a food allergy, Celiac is nonetheless a common disorder and about 1% or more of North Americans may develop it and it can occur at any age. With progression, there is increasing damage to the villi of the small intestine, which are responsible for uptake of nutrients, leading to nutrient- related diseases such as osteoporosis, malabsorption syndromes, anemia, even lymphoma and other cancers.

Celiac is an inherited disease which can show up because of a variety of different conditions. The most important factor in preventing development of celiac in at-risk babies is breastfeeding up to a year or more, especially upon first exposure to gluten.

Studies show that the timing of the introduction of gluten and amount of gluten given is important. Babies ingesting gluten laden cereals, crackers or other gluten containing foods during the first three months of life are an increased the risk for development of celiac disease, compared to infants who were first given gluten around six months of age.

Can Gluten Cause Cavities?

Dr. Richard Herbold of Capital District Vitality Center in New York writes that gluten can be the culprit in extensive dental decay in children as well.   He writes:

Some parents are unprepared for the staggering dental bills and persistent cavities children get, even when they brush and floss regularly. Parents know to restrict sugar, but what they may not realize is that a hidden gluten intolerance and poor gut health, not a fluoride deficiency, may be the cause of those cavities. For many children, simply transitioning to a gluten-free diet works wonders for halting decay and improving dental health.

Gluten Cross-Reactors Can Cause Dental Problems Too

Wheat products, which make up about 20% to 50% of the American diet, contain higher levels of gluten than in the past. In addition, meat substitutes can contain it labeled as seitan, which adds to exposure levels. Ingestion of gluten, antibiotics, etc, causes damage to the barrier which protects the gut. The gluten particles are able to “leak” into the blood and travel to other parts of the body which causes a condition called gluten sensitivity (GS).

These partially digested particles put the immune system on alert which results in the dispatch of inflammatory messengers to other parts of the body, including the brain whenever the “enemy” is present. Gluten even crosses the blood brain barrier and inflames the brain tissues. Many studies have shown complete or partial remission of brain-related problems such as schizophrenia, depression, ADHD, autism, migraines and Alzheimer’s Disease when gluten is removed from the diet.

In Swedish studies from the 1990,’s prompted by an epidemic of celiac disease, it was found that babies given higher amounts of wheat baby foods were much more likely to develop celiac disease. 

For persons who have a relative or parent with celiac disease, the disorder can show up after a virus, accident, pregnancy, or stressful situation.

But celiac disease is often silent and insidious. A certain degree of damage must occur before the disease can be diagnosed through blood testing.  Although it is a relatively common condition, of those susceptible, 90% can remain undiagnosed. In fact, the average time to diagnosis in a Canadian study was 12 years.

by The Healthy Home Economist

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Emanel Hypoplasia

Enamel is that hard, protective, visible outside layer of the tooth. It keeps teeth strong and healthy! Have you ever noticed any discolorations or defects in your child’s tooth? You could be noticing enamel hypoplasia.

This condition is a defect that causes a lesser quantity of enamel than normal. It can appear as a white spot, yellow to brown staining, pits, grooves or even thin, chipped or missing parts of enamel. In severe cases, the enamel doesn’t develop at all.

Because of these surface irregularities, hypoplastic teeth can have the following dental problems: more sensitive to heat or cold or pain, more prone to wearing down from grinding or “tooth to tooth contact”, more susceptible to an “acid attack” from the sugars in our foods and drinks, more susceptible to trapping plaque and bacteria, and more prone to tooth decay.

If you see a concerning area on your child’s teeth, then its best to schedule an appointment with your pediatric dentist! It is important to check and monitor these teeth.

There are also many different treatment options if necessary depending on the severity of the hypoplasia and the child’s ability to cooperate during dental treatment. Options may include protective sealants, desensitizing agents like Silver Diamine Fluoride (SDF), esthetic composite resin or “tooth-colored” fillings, full coverage crowns, or microabrasion. If left untreated, cavities may form and lead to pain or dental infection.

Just because a baby tooth has hypoplasia, doesn’t mean a permanent tooth will. These irregularities can occur before, during, or after birth of the child. Your primary and permanent teeth are developing at different times.

There are many different causes of enamel hypoplasia from genetics to environmental factors. This list includes: inherited developmental conditions, vitamin deficiencies, maternal illness, medications given to mother prior to birth or to the child during early childhood when teeth are developing, preterm birth, low birthweight, trauma to the teeth, infection, malnutrition, systemic diseases, and smoking or drug abuse.

Good oral hygiene and a healthy diet are important for all of our patients, and especially those with hypoplastic teeth.

We recommend brushing twice daily with fluoridated toothpaste. Maintain a diet low in sugar and be sure to avoid those ooey, gooey, sticky snacks! And don’t forget to visit your dentist at least twice a year for a checkup, professional cleaning and fluoride application.

by Heights Pediatric Dentistry and Ortodontics

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Coeliac Disease: Tooth, Tongue and Cheek Problems

In 2009 a study was conducted, the first study of it’s type, to see if there was a correlation between Coeliac Disease and a variety of problems that manifested in the teeth and other areas of the mouth.

This study was published in The Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology in 2009 and concluded that there was a link, and in 2011 the Journal of the Canadian Dental Association published the first clinical guidelines for dentists outlining the connection between Coelaic Disease and oral health problems.

Early diagnosis is very important, so children exhibiting any of the oral manifestations should be investigated as soon as possible.

Defects in tooth enamel, such as mottling, grooves, bands  and pits are a very common result of Coeliac Disease.  Mottling is probably the most prevalent way that Coeliac Disease presents in the mouth.  In some cases the shape of the teeth can be altered.   The defects are usually symmetrical.

Other indicators of possible underlying Coeliac Disease include:

Glossitis.  The tongue becomes smooth, shiny and red as a result of loss of the papillae (the little bumps on the surface of the tongue).

Aphthous ulcers.  These are painful ulcers that occur on the smooth tissues of the cheeks and gums.

Inflammation of the corners of the mouth.

Delayed or altered tooth eruption.

Oral lichen planus (a non-contagious disease of the oral mucous membranes).

Dry-mouth Syndrome.

If you notice that you or your child has any of these symptoms, it is definitely worthwhile investigating whether Coeliac Disease may be the underlying cause.

by Dr. Ken Lipworth

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Dry mouth problems may be associated with disease in the eyelids

If you suffer from a dry mouth, the chances are that you also have dry eyes. The problem may be due to the sebaceous glands in the eyelids.

– If you suffer from a dry mouth, the chances are that you also have dry eyes. The problem may be due to the sebaceous glands in the eyelids.

– In overall terms, we can see that if a patient suffers from dry mucous membranes, dry mouth problems may also be a sign that they have more serious symptoms from dry eyes than those without dry mouth problems, explains Ida Fostad, PhD, from the Institute of Oral Biology.

Fostad carried out much of the work for her doctorate at the Harvard Medical School under the supervision of Professor Darlene A. Dartt. On her return to Norway she examined more than 300 patients at the The Norwegian Dry Eye Clinic for the project. She found a predominant number of dry mouth patients who also had defective sebaceous glands in their eyelids, and thus also suffered from dry eyes. eyelids, and thus also suffered from dry eyes.

Tears are prevented from evaporating.

The sebaceous glands on the inside of the eyelids secrete a layer of fat that remains on the surface of the film of tears and prevents evaporation. When the glands do not secrete sufficient fat, the protective layer becomes thin enough to allow some of the tear fluid to evaporate. With tear fluid reduced in this way, the patient suffers from dry eyes.

An important reason why the sebaceous glands cease to work is that the ducts become blocked by secretions and remnants of cells. – Then the glands can no longer empty out the secretion, and they gradually atrophy and cease to work, Fostad explains.

Most studies of the population show that between 5-30 per cent have dry eyes. In Norway it is assumed that at least half a million people suffer from dry eyes in varying degrees, while the frequency is particularly high in Asia.

Women and users of medication are at risk

Fostad’s project also showed that there was a greater risk of problems with dryness in both locations for women and for patients taking prescribed medication. 

Many drugs can inhibit secretion from the eye glands and salivary glands in different ways. One of the most common symptoms of the autoimmune disease, Sjögren’s syndrome, is dryness of both eyes and mouth. We also know that the disease chiefly affects women after the menopause, Fostad says.

She is also a dentist, and through her research she could see that patients who suffered from dry eyes in addition to dry mouth often had more serious problems with dry eyes.

by UIO

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Hand, foot and mouth disease

Hand, foot and mouth disease is a common childhood illness that can affect adults. It usually clears up by itself in 7 to 10 days.

Check if it's hand, foot and mouth disease

The first signs of hand, foot and mouth disease can be:

a sore throat

a high temperature, above 38C

not wanting to eat.

After a few days mouth ulcers and a rash will appear.

The symptoms are usually the same in adults and children, but can be much worse in adults.

It's possible to get hand, foot and mouth disease more than once.

How to treat hand, foot and mouth disease yourself

You cannot take antibiotics or medicines to cure hand, foot and mouth disease. It has to run its course. It usually gets better in 7 to 10 days.

To help with the symptoms:

drink fluids to prevent dehydration – avoid acidic drinks, such as fruit juice

eat soft foods like soup – avoid hot and spicy foods

take paracetamol or ibuprofen to help ease a sore mouth or throat.

A pharmacist can help with hand, foot and mouth disease

Speak to a pharmacist for advice about treatments, such as mouth ulcer gels, sprays and mouthwashes, to relieve pain.

They can tell you which ones are suitable for children.

How to stop hand, foot and mouth disease spreading

Hand, foot and mouth disease is easily passed on to other people. It's spread in coughs, sneezes and poo.

You're infectious from a few days before you have any symptoms, but you're most likely to give it to others in the first 5 days after symptoms start.

To reduce the risk of spreading hand, foot and mouth disease:

wash your hands often with warm soapy water – and teach children to do so

use tissues to trap germs when you cough or sneeze

bin used tissues as quickly as possible

do not share towels or household items like cups or cutlery

wash soiled bedding and clothing on a hot wash

Staying off school or nursery

Keep your child off school or nursery while they're feeling unwell.

But as soon as they're feeling better, they can go back to school or nursery. There's no need to wait until all the blisters have healed.

Keeping your child off for longer is unlikely to stop the illness spreading.

by NHS

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What you should know about yellow tongue

Ordinarily, yellow tongue is a harmless condition that causes a thick, yellowish coating on the tongue. Yellow tongue tends to occur when dead skin cells, bacteria, or discoloring particles become trapped or buildup on the tongue’s surface.

Mostly, yellow tongue clears up with basic home care. But on rare occasions, the condition is a symptom of a more serious health condition that requires medical attention, usually jaundice.

The signs of yellow tongue vary depending on the cause. In the majority of cases, basic at home care, especially good oral hygiene, resolves cases of yellow tongue within a matter of days to weeks.

Fast facts on yellow tongue:

A wide variety of factors can cause or contribute to the development of yellow tongue.

Some medications and medical conditions can cause dehydration and dry mouth.

Though rare, in some cases yellow tongue is a sign of jaundice.

What causes it?

A few specific habits, conditions, and medications are known to increase a person’s likelihood of developing the condition. Causes of yellow tongue include:

Oral hygiene products with oxidizing agents: Some oral hygiene products, such as mouthwashes, rinses, and toothpaste, contain chemicals or particles that cause dry mouth, irritate skin cells on the tongue, or cause them to change color.

Poor oral hygiene, tobacco use, mouth breathing or dry mouth, foods with dyes, colorants, or those that stick to the tongue.

Many foods contain dyes or colorants that can stain the tongue yellow, or are sticky and remain stuck to the tongue, discoloring its surface.

Certain medications and drugs, several medications and drugs also contain staining particles, cause pigment discoloration, or weaken the immune system.

Common substances and medications that may increase the likelihood of developing yellow tongue include:

diabetes and many diabetes management medications

blood-thinning medications

antibiotics, lansoprazole (Prevacid), chlorhexidine (found in some disinfectant mouth rinses), iron salts, minocycline, bismuth subsalicylate, cancer and radiation medications, antipsychotic medications, some Illicit drugs, such as cocaine, can also cause the tongue to discolor.

When should people see a doctor?

In some instances, especially when accompanied by noticeable symptoms, yellow tongue can be a sign of more serious health complications, such as jaundice.

Reasons to seek medical attention for yellow tongue include:

symptoms of jaundice, including yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes, bruising, fever, vomiting, nausea, fever, bloody diarrhea, and abdominal pain

concern over the appearance of tongue color change or other tongue changes

the color not going away with basic lifestyle adjustments, home remedies, or lasts longer than 2 weeks pain, symptoms that get noticeably worse for no apparent reason, very thick, pronounced skin cells on the tongue (papillae) that look like a layer of fur.

Are there any complications?

The only complications associated with yellow tongue are those linked to more serious underlying conditions, such as jaundice.

Potential complications of jaundice include:

liver scarring, failure, and cancer

gastrointestinal inflammation, damage, and swelling

fluid retention and swelling in the lower body

spleen inflammation and enlargement

cerebral palsy and deafness are severe complications in newborns.

Oral hygiene is an essential factor. The same habits and remedies that help treat yellow tongue also help prevent it. Common ways to treat and prevent yellow tongue include:

Increasing frequency and thoroughness of teeth brushing.

Brushing the teeth or rinsing using an antibacterial mouth rinse after meals. These are available to purchase in health stores, pharamacies, and online.

Brushing the tongue gently with a soft-bristled toothbrush.

Using a fluoride rinse. These are available to purchase in health stores, pharamacies, and online.

Scraping the tongue gently every day.

Rinsing out the mouth once daily for 60 seconds with a mixture of 1 part hydrogen peroxide to 5 parts water, rinsing the mouth with water several times after.

Applying baking soda directly to the tongue for 60 seconds before rinsing off.

Quitting smoking or using tobacco products.

Treating sinus infections.


by Medical News Today

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Dental experts discover biological imbalance is the link between gum and kidney disease

An imbalance of the body's oxygen producing free radicals and its antioxidant cells could be the reason why gum disease and chronic kidney disease affect each other, a new study led by the University of Birmingham has found.

Periodontitis -- or gum disease -- is a common, inflammatory disease which causes bleeding gums, wobbly or drifting teeth and can eventually result in tooth loss.

Previous studies have shown a link between the severe oral inflammation caused by gum disease and chronic kidney disease (CKD) which demonstrated that those with worse inflammation of the gums have worse kidney function.

Previous research also showed that patients with CKD and periodontitis experience a drop in survival rates, similar in magnitude to if they had diabetes instead of gum inflammation, suggesting that gum inflammation may causally affect kidney function.

In this latest study, led by researchers at the University of Birmingham, over 700 patients with chronic kidney disease were examined using detailed oral and full-body examinations including blood samples. The aim was to test the hypothesis that periodontal inflammation and kidney function affect each other and to establish the underlying mechanism that may facilitate this.

Results showed that just a 10% increase in gum inflammation reduces kidney function by 3%. In this group of patients, a 3% worsening in kidney function would translate to an increase in the risk of kidney failure over a 5 year period from 32%-34%. Results also showed that a 10% reduction in kidney function increases periodontal inflammation by 25%.

In contrast to current beliefs that inflammation is the link between periodontitis and other systemic diseases, researchers found for the first time, that in this group of patients, the effect was caused by a biological process called 'oxidative stress' -- or, an imbalance between reactive oxygen species and the body's antioxidant capacity which damages tissues on a cellular level.

Lead author Dr Praveen Sharma, from the Periodontal Research Group at the University of Birmingham's School of Dentistry, said: "This is the first paper to quantify the causal effect of periodontitis on kidney function and vice-versa as well as the first to elucidate the pathways involved.

"It showed that even a modest reduction in gum inflammation can benefit renal function. Given the relative ease of achieving a 10% reduction in gum inflammation, through simple measures like correct brushing techniques and cleaning between the teeth, these results are very interesting.

"We hope that this research paves the way for further studies to see if improvements in kidney function, following periodontal care, translate to longer, healthier life for patients with chronic kidney disease. We would also hope that the hypothesis we have identified could be tested in other groups."

by University of Birmingham

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