Tuesday, January 27, 2015

You Might Be Over-Whitening

Most of us have either used whitening strips, whitening toothpastes, or brushed with baking soda to help whiten our teeth.

It's not recommended to use any whitening strips more than once a month and any other whitening method more than once a week - any more than that and you'll strip away too much enamel.

If you feel the need to whiten your teeth daily, do it naturally with foods like strawberries and pineapple. Both are acidic in a cleansing way.

Also try celery, pears and apples. They contain fiber, which increases the amount of saliva in your mouth. The more saliva you're making, the cleaner your teeth!!





Kouroush Maddahi,DDS,a cosmetic dentist practicing in Beverly Hills, CA (Redbook Magazine - Februray 2015 Copy - What dentist tell their friends)

Monday, January 26, 2015

Do you know the Cost vs Benefit of your dental coverage?

Do you know the Cost vs Benefit of your dental coverage? Would it surprise you to know that most people don't? It is sad reality that most people who are paying for some form of dental coverage cannot even tell you what it covers. So to them I ask this: What are you paying for? 

Now, if I made you go to your filing cabinet, grab your benefit guide or insurance declarations, then this blog has already served it's intended purpose. If not, read on while I fill you in on this little tidbit of information. If you don't know what the benefits you are receiving are, how do you know if you cost is worth it or not?

Let's break it down a little further. I will pick on dental insurance again because that's my favorite thing to do! Let's say you are paying 15.00 per month for your family, (that's $180.00 per year). What are getting for that? If you just said "dental insurance" then you owe me 20 push-ups. Look deeper, 30%-80% off of dental work. (you are getting there, keep going), 2 free cleanings per year (alright), 12-24 month waiting period on major procedures..(wait... what was that??) YES! My point exactly. You are going to be paying for this coverage for an entire year before your little Sammy or Sally can their braces, or can the get a bridge or implant that you need. Even worse, once you are eligible to even have the procedure done, what percent is is covered at? 30%, 35%, 50% or 60%, because I can guarantee you it will not the 80%. (that comes after you have maintained coverage for 3-4 years). Read alittle more.. 1500.00 of dental work covered per person per year. So you are paying 180.00 per year to have 1500.00 worth of work done (which can go fast now days) and don't even get me into the deductible!

Anyway, my point is this. Make sure that you are not just being bedazzled by the "low monthy premium" phrase.Please Please Please check your Cost vs Benefits and make sure you are getting coverage that is worthy of your money.

To compare various insurance or plans side by side, visit this comparison zone!

Friday, January 23, 2015

This Could Be Why You Can't Conceive

Periodontitis, or gum disease, could be one of the things at fault. Gum disease is a chronic inflammatory condition that can affect many parts of your body.

Research shows that women who have periodontitis can take longer to conceive, and unfortunately, those who do get pregnant are at a higher risk for giving birth to premature or low-birth-weight baby.

Yes, your partner's gum health is important too. A small study has shown men with periodontitis may have a lower sperm count.

Good news: Gum disease can be treated with scaling and root planing, sometime surgery, depending on how serious your problem is.

If you are having trouble conceiving, visit with your dentist!


Griselle Otiz-Ramsey, DMD,MS,Ph.D.diplomate of the American Board of Periodontology (Redbook Magazine - February 2015 Copy - What dentists tell their friends)

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Discount Dental Plans ARE "Real" Dental Coverage!

A misconception about dental plans was made even more evident to me earlier this week when I was told by someone they only needed the plan until they find "real dental coverage". A misconception that a dental plan, such as Savon, is not real coverage could not be further from the truth. In fact, a dental plan is better coverage for you than dental insurance. Anyone that thinks or is told different I would invite to speak to the 30,000+ members of our plan that have saved tremendously over the last 22 years!

I am not sure where this misconception came from. I am not sure if it is the word "Discount" or "Plan" compared to "Insurance" or if it is the fact that insurance has coverage for just about anything. Whatever the case, dental insurance seems to have more attention then the plans do. 

So, here I am to present my case as to why Dental Plans should get the recognition and respect in the industry that they deserve. 

#1: Immediate Coverage- With a dental plan, you do not have to have to wait for your coverage to start. In fact, we have people sign up in the dental office and they are covered right then and there. 

#2: No Waiting Periods - For those of us that do not like to pay for something that they cannot use for what they need, then a Dental Plan is your option. With Dental Insurance, you have waiting periods on most major procedures anywhere from 6 - 24+ months. If you have a child that needs braces and you choose dental insurance, then your child will have to wait on average for over a year to be covered and that's if your insurance plan covers them at all. With a dental plan, they are covered immediately!

#3: No Limit To Visits or Coverage Caps: With a dental plan, you can go to the dentist whenever you want, as many times as you want and get as much work as you need done, without having to worry about whether or not you will exceed the $1,500.00 per year (on average) that dental insurance limits you to. 

#4: Better knowledge of fees that are charged. With a dental plan, the dentists are bound by a set fee schedule that they are required to charge you off of. This helps regulate the cost of dental work and prevents erroneous increases in prices. By having that fee schedule, you as the patient are now aware of the what the prices are and what is covered by the plan. You do not have to worry if the dental insurance company is going to deny the claim or only pay a portion of it. Also FYI, Savon Dental Plan discounts every single procedure, listed or unlisted. 

These are just 4 examples of why dental plans should not be underestimated, undervalued or misconstrued as sub-par coverage. Hands down, comparing apples to apples, dental plans have a leg up on the dental insurance companies and are proven to save YOU as the patient more money at the dentist office. 

For more information on comparing dental plans to insurance click here!

 

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Cavities are contagious???

Yes! It's true! A bacteria called Streptococcus Mutans causes tooth decay and it is contagious! It can be passed along from one person to another through any activity that holds the possibility of transmitting saliva; i.e., kissing, sharing of utensils, children's daycare toys (kid's put everything in their mouth!) Parents can give it to children, it can be passed between boyfriend & girlfriend, spouses, etc. This is not to diminish the damage that can be caused by sugary foods, so the best defense against the bacteria is a regular routine of brushing and rinsing. Additionally, sealants are an effective barrier against the bacteria, especially in children under the age of 15.

Ask your dentist about prevention from this type of "cavity passing"...now is the time!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Never Nurse A Cup Of Coffee

Drinking small amounts of sweetened coffee over hours is more damaging to your teeth than eating a huge slice of chocolate cake in 5 minutes.

When you sip you're reintroducing sugar to your mouth, creating a breeding ground for tooth decay.

So instead of sipping your coffee all morning, try and drink it as quickly as possible. Then always brush or rinse after!
 


-Mark S. Wolff, DDS ,Ph.D. (Redbook Magazine - February 2015 Copy - What dentists tell their friends)

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Sugary Drinks Are Harmful to Babies Teeth

We all know that some of the common kid's drinks on today's market are loaded with sugar...maybe even moreso than years ago, although I raised my children in an era when it was common to give them "jello water" in their baby bottles. Goodness knows we are much better informed today! However there are some misconceptions about healthy "fruit drinks" that you might not have considered. Fruit juices, (even the organic, naturally sweetened ones) still contain sugar in other forms. Additionally, the acidic content in fruit juices is harmful to children's teeth! Diet Soda is another culprit...the acid can eat away at tooth enamel, especially in children whose teeth are in the formative stages. It is recommended that in babies 6 months to 2 years that you dilute fruit juices with water and only allow these types of drinks with a meal. Never let them go to sleep with a sugary drink in their bottle or a sippy cup, and begin brushing their teeth as soon as the first one appears in their mouth, usually age 6 months. They do make baby toothbrushes, and toothpaste isn't really necessary...but the sooner you start the better. And starting them young helps to ensure that they will adopt healthy hygiene habits as they get older!

Keep them smiling!

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Natural Toothpaste Alternatives

Natural toothpaste alternatives are what is "in" these days! Even though toothpaste that contains fluoride is highly recommended it also contains ingredients that cause concern to people.

Below are some natural toothpaste alternatives:

  1. Sea Salt - How much more natural can you get than brushing your teeth with salt from the sea? Dissolve the salt in water then brush.
  2. Baking soda - This may be one of the most popular alternatives out there. Just like sea salt you can dissolve the baking soda in water and brush. Some people like to add some peppermint oil to make your mouth feel fresh.
  3. Dry brushing - Although you wont get that minty feel or taste, it don't get much more simple than this.
  4. Brushing with pure water - If dry brushing don't cut it, try brushing with water. You can even add your favorite essential oils to the water for flavor.
  5. Soap - I know gross, but it does work.
  6. Oil pulling - Swish one tablespoon of coconut oil as long as you can. Spit it out then brush with water.
  7. Water Pik - This works wonders cleaning the teeth and gums.

The above health material is provided as an information service.  It should not be intended to take the place of the important relationship between you and your dentist.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Chemotherapy Can Affect Your Teeth and Gums

Chemotherapy can cause a multitude of problematic symptoms in the mouth. Every person is different and consequently, symptoms vary widely and some can be affected more severely than others. Some may suffer no symptoms at all. The following is a list of common problems caused by chemotherapy that are related to the mouth.
  • Mouth Sores, also known as Mucositis (varies in severity from mild to acute and can be very debilitating, making it hard to chew or swallow without pain)
  • Dry Mouth. referred to by dentists as root resorption (this can soften the enamel on your teeth making them more suceptble to decay)
  • Inflammation/irritation of the gums which can cause soreness and bleeding and can lead to infection
  • Bone Loss and receding gums
The best time to discuss these possible effects with your doctor is before you have treatment! Virtually all of these symptoms may be manageable. Sometimes symptoms can be alleviated by simply changing the course of treatment. This is not an option for everyone however, only your doctor can make that decision. Some symptoms may be long term, so be sure to see your doctor and/or your dentist if you are beginning or are involved in treatment and you experience any of these problems.
Good luck and Keep Smiling!

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Bleeding Gums

Bleeding gums can be a sign that have or are at risk for gum disease.

The main cause of bleeding gums is the buildup of plaque at the gum line, this will lead to a condition called gingivitis (inflamed gums).

Other causes of bleeding gums can include:
  • Brushing to hard
  • Pregnancy
  • Dental appliances
  • Improper flossing
  • Vitamin deficiency
Listed below are some home remedies for treating bleeding gums.
  • Mouthwash - Mouthwash helps tighten the gums and helps prevent food particles from getting stuck in between the teeth.
  • Salt water rinse - Mix salt and warm water to create a rise. After brushing, swish this around your mouth and spit it out. This helps reduce swelling and pain.
  • Gum massage - After brushing simply use your index finger and thumb to gently massage the gums.
  • Stay away from tobacco products.
  • Try using a water pik to help clear debris from around the gum line.

If you have bleeding gums, visit your dentist, he is the expert!



The above health material is provided as an information service.  It should not be used for diagnostic purposes nor is it intended to take the place of the important relationship between you and your doctor.