Monday, June 26, 2017

Temporomandibular Joint Problem?

In talking to a friend today that has TMJ problems, I remembered this blog that Dr. C did back in 2008. Some great information in it so I though I would re-blog it for everyone to see!

Could your aches and pains be a Temporomandibular Joint Problem? Let's review some of the symptoms of TMJ problems.
1. A malocclusion which is an imbalance in the way your teeth come together.
2. A 'clicking' or 'grinding' sound when you open or close your mouth.
3. A ringing or aching in and around the ear.
4. A pain or tenderness of the hard or soft tissue in and around the jaw area.
5. A facial pain.
6. A pain or ache when chewing or swallowing.
7. A headache.
8. A 'locking' jaw joint.
9. A shoulder and/or neck ache.
Although any of these signs and symptoms could be a Temporomandibular Joint Problem, it takes a health care professional that is trained in Temporomandibular Joint Problems to diagnose a TMJ problem.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Finance Options For Dental Care

Ok, so you've just been to the dentist and found out that you need thousands of dollars of restorative work. You have what we commonly refer to as "sticker shock". You know that you don't have that kind of money just laying around......
Whether you are in need of restorative work or cosmetic dentistry, there are a variety of creative financing plans available to help. Dentistry is among the most expensive in healthcare, with costs rising even as the economy is failing. Here are some suggestions for those who are in need of major restorative work, but who cannot afford the out of pocket expense. 
First of all, make sure you have good dental coverage (a good dental plan used in conjunction with your credit plan will go a long way toward lowering the costs, thereby making your money go farther.) 
Here are some credit organizations to consider:
  • Care Credit Healthcare Plan is a financing company that is offered by GE Money Company. It offers financing for personal healthcare, i.e. dental, (cosmetic or restorative) vision care, surgical procedures, (and just FYI) there is financing available for pet care as well! This option does require that you qualify for a loan. Click here to read more....
  • Citi Health Card is a program that offers dental financing with a variety of flexible payment options. The have some no interest payment options, options that are for certain periods of time and a revolving card option with no minimum expense. According to their website, they have a quick approval process! If you have a need for an immediate procedure and are low on funds, this one may be the one to try.

    Unfortunately, there are many who may not qualify for financing. Don't give up! Many dental providers are now offering in-house financing options for people with no insurance, or who might need a little help with funding for an expensive treatment plan. Additionally, dental school clinics are a consideration, as they can perform most procedures at discounted fees and all work is done under supervised conditions.
Believe it or not, there is something out there for everyone in the way of affordable dental care! Don't be discouraged! 

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Bad Breath-Is it Perio related or....NOT?

Generally, when we encounter someone with bad breath, we think of gum disease or poor oral hygiene habits. The first thought that comes to mind (after trying to escape the close proximity) is that they probably don't brush their teeth regularly. Judgmental lot, we humans! But there may be a much more sinister malady at play.  Think tongue plaque.  Yep, that gross, slimy coating on your tongue that builds up over time and wrecks havoc on the bacteria count in your mouth...  Epiphany! Oh, so this is why the dentist includes a tongue scraper in that little hygiene goody bag you get when you have your teeth cleaned!  Turns out it is an important part (or it should be) of your daily oral routine. Why?  Because that bacteria can cause gingivitis.  That's right, gum disease, aka  periodontal disease, infection, bad breath and extreme embarrassment.  Or, to mention the extreme, loss of teeth.
So why take a chance?   Brush, floss and then scrape your tongue for goodness sake!

Keep Smiling!

Did You Know Eating Disorders Can Effect Your Oral Health?

Many Americans are affected by eating disorders such as anorexia, bulimia and binge eating. It is often the pain and discomfort related to dental complications that first causes patients to consult with a health professional. Dentists are often the first health professionals to observe signs and symptoms of eating disorders.

Anorexia-Involves an extreme fear of weight gain or a dread of becoming “fat” even though these individuals are markedly underweight.

Bulimia-Discrete periods of overeating (binge eating) which may occur several times a week or at its most severe, several times a day. This leads to self-vomiting.

Binge Eating-Binge eating may involve rapid consumption of large amounts of food with a sense of loss of control. Feelings of guilt and shame may lead to repeated episodes of binge eating.

Eating disorders that may include frequent vomiting and may result in nutritional deficiencies can also affect oral health. Salivary glands may become enlarged. Lips are often red, dry and cracked. Lesions may appear on oral soft tissues which may also bleed easily. There may be changes in the color, shape and length of teeth. Teeth may become sensitive to hot and cold foods.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Oral Cancer- The Forgotten Killer?

So many people just don't take this deadly disease seriously...  

There are approximately 30,000+ new cases of oral and pharyngeal cancer diagnosed in the United States each year. Out of these cases as many as 8,000 people will die from the disease. This works out to be about 22 deaths per day, each and every day, from oral cancer in the United States. On top of this staggering statistic, the 5 year survival rate is only 50%. Although survival rates for most cancers are increasing in the United States, the rate of survival from oral cancer has not improved in decades. 
What people don't realize about oral cancer is that regular screening can help to detect it in it's early stages, when it is easiest to treat and cure.  Make sure you have an oral cancer screening at your next visit to the dentist.  It could save your life!  Early detection is the key to curing this deadly form of cancer. Don't put it off and risk becoming a statistic! Ask your dental provider about your risk today.

Keep Smiling! 

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Antacids Weakening Your Teeth?

We all have taken antacids such as Tums, Alka-Seltzer or Prilosec at some point in our lives to quickly relieve heartburn, indigestion or an upset stomach.

Although antacids neutralize the acid in our stomach it can cause major damage to your smile.

Below are some ways antacids have effects on the teeth:

Weakening the teeth: Antacids can inhibit the absorption of calcium and protein which are the vital components for having strong teeth and a strong jaw.

Tooth Decay and Gum Disease:

  • Antacids can cause dry mouth - Without normal saliva production its hard to wash food debris from the teeth and neutralize acid produced plaque. Leaving your more susceptible to tooth decay.
  • Antacids are full of sugar - Chewable antacids can get stuck in between the teeth witch can cause cavities.

If you have to take an antacid please follow these recommendations so you can avoid negative effects on your smile in the long run:

  • Use "sugar free" antacids
  • Rinse mouth with water after taking chewable antacids and brush your teeth after 30 minutes. 
  • Baking soda can help clean your teeth and neutralize stomach acid. 

Remember to stick to a proper oral health routine and visit your dentist on a regular basis!  

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Over-diagnosing in Dentistry

You can't avoid the shell-shock reflex....imagine you've just been to the dentist and he said you need, what?  A half dozen crowns.. or maybe it was veneers....or even a full mouth restoration? $5000, $10,000....or eeek!  $35,000? Your head is spinning. You can't even think! Surely he was kidding, right? What now?

This is a growing problem in truly has become an art and as such, well, artists can command their price, right?  It is unfortunate but in today's market it is a reality.  One can visit 5 dentists and get 5 separate and varying opinions at various levels of expense. Why is that, you ask?  It's a legitimate question.  Let's touch on the obvious, although I hate to bring more negativity, but greed is a factor.  Then we can move to the less obvious, the things that most wouldn't think of;  The Dental Schools.  Frankly, some dental schools teach a more conservative curriculum than others and where he went to school makes a difference as to the quality and ummm..[ambition] of a dentists practice. Geographical location is yet another stands to reason that if you are in a more affluent area you will pay more for just about everything, right down to the cost of an ordinary hamburger.  Other factoring points are high overhead costs such as equipment, payroll and malpractice insurance. The thing is, however, all of that aside; it isn't like dentists are starving here...their median income is probably right around $120,000 per year. Now, I'm talking about general dentists.  I'm not even going to venture into the financial world of the specialists. That's another topic for another day.

So, the question here is:  What can you do if you suspect you've been over-diagnosed or upsold? The first thing is to not panic!  As long as you haven't signed a contract then your treatment plan is exactly that...a plan.  You can opt in or opt out, but before you make any decision you should get a second opinion.  Maybe even a third, just to find medium ground. Solicit your friends and family members for the name of their trusted dentist.  Get a good, solid recommendation. Talk it over with a professional consultant or someone whose opinion you trust. You can never research too much.

This is the best advice I can offer!  Forewarned is forearmed.

Keep smiling!

The Advantages Of Digital Dental X-Rays

The advancement in x-ray technology is nothing short of amazing. The old days of having to hand develop the images, use lighting boards and wait a while are long past us.

The digital x-rays today are quicker, clearer, readily available at any time and more accurate than ever before. Almost every dental center is now using them. The feedback that I have received from the dentist on them have been great. It really makes their job easier and making tracking the treatment progress easier as well.

For the patient it is less intrusive, the process is quicker and they have the peace of mind that their dentist is getting the best image possible of their teeth and mouth. Not to mention that the dental office now has the ability to save multiple x-rays digitally and they are not placed in a file and need to be located every visit.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

How To Suppress Gag Reflex

Whether your brushing your back molars, tongue or  having dental x-rays you may have experienced gagging.

Gag reflex is also known as laryngeal spasms which is a contraction of the back of the throat evoked by touching the roof of the mouth, back of the tongue and the area around the tonsils and uvula.

If you're in a situation where something is setting off your gag reflex try these short term suppression tips:
  • Squeeze your thumb - Form a fist with your left hand. Position your thumb under your finger and squeeze. * This method commonly used in dental offices. 
  • Immediate Remedies - This method helps numb the soft palate. Use a over the counter throat numbing spray or your can apply a topical numbing medication like orajel. .
  • Salt on the tongue - Moisten the tip of your finger, dip it into salt, touch the salt to the tongue. The salt in this method activates the taste buds and temporarily suppresses the gag reflex. 
"Curing" your gag reflex will help make brushing your teeth, tongue and visits to the dental office much more enjoyable. Follow these desensitizing techniques:
  • Find where your gag reflex starts by using your toothbrush. The point nearest to the front of your tongue that makes you gag is where you want to concentrate. 
  • Brush your tongue right where the gag begins. Spend about 10 seconds brushing that area.
  • Repeat the process daily while gradually increasing the brushing time and moving the brushing behind the initial gag starting point. Eventually you will hit the soft palate.
  • Be patient this process can take about a month to complete!

Thursday, June 1, 2017

To Protect Your Teeth, Keep These Bad Habits at Bay!

Many people have bad habits that, when accidents strike, can be devastating to your oral health!  The following is a list of things one should never do!  Take heed!  Dentistry is very expensive!  

~Never, ever chew ice.  Ice chips your teeth and causes minute cracks in the enamel, which weakens the structure of your teeth.  

~Never open can tabs or bottles with your front teeth.  It will cause chips in your teeth.

~Beware of biting into fruit that has pits in it.  More broken teeth and dentures are caused by cherry pits than any other fruit!  

~Try to avoid biting your nails.  It just isn't a good practice all the way around.  You can chip your teeth and your mouth contains bacteria that you can deposit near your nail bed and cause infection. 

In addition to these things, you should also avoid putting small objects (choking hazards) into your mouth such as:

Paper Clips

These things can all pose a threat to your teeth.  No one wants to visit the dentist because of a silly accident!   

Be careful and Keep Smiling!  

Question From Our Member - I Had A Root Canal Done 6 Months Ago, Why Am I Still In Pain?

Questions From Our Members

M. Luedke of Surprise, Arizona asks: 

“I had a root canal performed on one of my molars in November of 2016. They covered the tooth with a porcelain crown. 6 months later I am still experiencing extreme sensitivity to pressure and constant pain.  I've been back to my general dentist and the endodontist and still can't get any relief.  What could be causing this pain?”

Savon’s Answer

Before I start with the answer, it is imperative to know that we are not dentists!  With that being said I did some research on the website "“RealSelf” and here are some suggestions from other dentists.

Dr. Scott Young of Houston TX states:  “Though it is rare, there are times when a tooth that has had a root canal can produce discomfort. One of several things could be happening.
  1. The tooth has an accessory (extra) nerve that is small and perhaps was not found.
  2. The tooth has a crack that is usually between the roots.
  3. The existing crown may not be fitting as well as it could.
I would have your dentist do an evaluation and take an X-ray. He/she can then give you possible causes of the pain and solutions to correct it.”

Dr. Murray Bruckel of Norwalk CT. states:  “It sounds like one of the nerve canals was overlooked, or incomplete removal of found nerves.  Have your dentist take an xray for signs of infection and have the rootcanal redone right through the crown.”

Dr. Soheyla Marzvaan of Orange County CA states:  “When a tooth hurts after root canal, Several factors may be involved.  If temperature sensitivity or pain exists, its either another tooth next to the tooth in question, or an accessory or main nerve still exits in the tooth and the root canal needs to be retreated.  If temperature does not cause any throbbing pain then a crack in the tooth, and a in ill fitting crown could cause it.”

The one thing that these dentists agree on is you should not be in pain.  Get in touch with the dentist(s) that treated the tooth and push the issue!

Originally posted to our June 2017 Newsletter!

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Do You Breath Through Your Mouth?

Mouth breathing happens all the time in adults and children. It usual happens when the nasal passage is obstructed due to a cold, deviated septum do to trauma or even a congenital condition but it can also happen due to taking certain medications.

Although mouth breathing may not seem like a big deal, it can actually cause many health risks including your dental health.

Here are they ways mouth breathing can affect your dental health:

Dry Mouth - Salivary glands don't make enough saliva to keep the mouth moist.

Skeletal deformities in children - Mouth breathing promotes the growth of the upper jaw, rather than the lower jaw causing a large overbite and "gummy" smile.

Red/inflamed gums - Mouth breathing causes the soft gum tissues to dry out. causing bleeding and possible cavities.

Bad breath - The lack of saliva produced isn't rinsing out the bacteria as well as it should.

If you start to notice yourself or your child breathing through their mouth  on a regular basis its time to visit a ENT (ears, nose and throat doctor) to see if there is a nasal obstruction.  Also visit your dentist for a exam to make sure there is no damage to your teeth and you have a healthy mouth!

What Is Malocclusion?

Malocclusion is also known as a bad bite. It is a condition in which a persons teeth are out of alignment, crooked or crowded.

There are generally two types of malocclusion. 

Dental malocclusion: This is when the teeth are not lined up properly; even the jaw may be aligned. Tooth crowding causes this type of occlusion.

Skeletal malocclusion: A skeletal malocclusion occurs when the upper and lower jaws don't line up correctly. This type of malocclusion can be classed as an overbite or an underbite.

Normally malocclusion starts to appear between the ages of six and twelve when permanent teeth are coming in. A bad bite can also be the result of many things such as: 

Tongue thrusting (pushing your tongue against your teeth) 
Fingernail biting 
Mouth breathing: Breathing primarily through your mouth instead of your nose.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Can Grape Seed Extract Extend The Life Of Your Fillings?

Grapes are a healthy snack but the seeds found inside of the grape is actually the healthiest part. Grape seeds contain antioxidants and a natural plant compound called " Oligomeric Proanthocyanidin Complex (OPCs)".
OPCs helps prevent premature aging and certain chronic diseases.

Studies have shown that grape seed extract reduces edema (swelling), lowering blood pressure and heart rate, helps with eye diseases related to diabetes.

According to the National Center For Complementary and Integrative Health, their is a preliminary research on grade seed extract and Alzheimer disease and hereditary Hemochromatosis (when body's iron is too high).

If grape seed extract can help all of these things I have listed above can the natural compound found in the grape seed extract strengthen dentin (the tissue beneath a tooth's enamel)?

If you have a filling you probably already know it wont last forever, you may get 5-7 years out of it before it needs replaced but in the Journal Of Dental Research, Ana Bedran - Russo, associate professor of restorative dentistry, explains how grape seed extract can make fillings stronger.

Ana said the "extract can increase the strength of the dentin, which comprises the majority of the calcified extracellular tissue of the teeth, forming the layer just beneath the hard external enamel."

An extra bonus of using grape seed extract is helps stop or reverse early tooth decay!

So what is the suggested dosage of grape seed extract? state a standard dosage of grape seed extract consists of 50 - 300 milligrams daily.
The University of Maryland Medical Center notes the following: 25-150 milligrams daily for general antioxidant support and 150-300 milligrams daily for chronic insufficiency's.
*Consult your primary physician first before anything new*

Click here for the full article on grape seed extract extending the life of fillings!

Friday, May 19, 2017

Would You Consider Braces For Your Pet?

 If you are a pet owner and, like me, your pet is your baby, it's likely you will spare no expense to ensure that they are healthy and happy.  Maintaining your pet's oral health is as important as making sure that they are vaccinated or that they are receiving regular veterinary care. (Goodness knows there are already twice as many vaccinations for dogs as opposed to humans, and medications can get pricey as well as just the simple costs of office visits for wellness check-ups.) Pets should have regular dental check-ups and cleanings. Animals are susceptible to many of the same physical ailments as humans, including dental issues! They can get cavities, periodontal disease, abscesses, broken teeth...just about anything a human can get, they can get, including crooked teeth! Of course they feel the pain of these ailments, just as we do. But did you know that your pet may actually be a candidate for braces?  Now, braces are not for every dog or will depend on their age, type of malocclusion and their ability to tolerate the discomfort of wearing braces, but there are a variety of specialists available out there who practice veterinary dentistry, including canine orthodontics. Expect to pay a lot of money!  Canine dentistry is not cheap.  It may even be more expensive than what we would pay for our own braces!  A good option may be to find a good pet insurance plan and find out if it covers dentistry and orthodontics. Check with your veterinarian.  He or she can probably recommend one.

Keep your pet smiling!

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Having Dentures Doesn't Mean You Don't Need Dental Coverage

We hear this time and time again in our office, "I have dentures now so I no longer need your plan". As good as that may sounds to you as a denture patient, the reality of it is quite the contrary. In fact, now that you are wearing dentures is all more the reason to have a dental plan. You see, getting dentures is not an end game for going to dentist. It is a new start of a different type of dental visits. The ADA recommends that you still get your check-up every year and also be checked for oral cancer. Denture patients run a higher risk of it.

Having no dental coverage at all will lead to very costly dental bills, even if you have dentures. If the break, do not fit properly or you need that check-up, the bill can add up quickly and I assure you the dental insurance will not be the answer you are looking for. Dental insurance is a costly waste of money for general dental patients and even more so for denture wearers. The waiting period alone to have anything done with your dentures is bad enough, but they tag it on with very limited and minimal coverage on them. For example, in general, Insurance companies will make you wait 5 years to be eligible for coverage on having your dentures replaced or repaired. The fact is, most problem with dentures happen in the first 2 years. Those that have had dentures for 5 years or more are less likely to have any significant problems with them.

So that's where the dental plan becomes more valuable to a denture patient. Knowing the cost of a repair, re-alignment or replacement, allows for them to make the decision of what to do next. With the immediate coverage, coverage on all pre-existing conditions and significant savings, you will have the peace of mind that you are always covered.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Green Tea can be Great for your Teeth & Gums!

Isn't it great when you find out that a product you use regularly and have come to love has added health benefits?  It's a commonly known fact that green tea has many health benefits for the human body.  It's a natural antioxidant and it's great for your digestive system. But I just recently found out that it provides many oral health benefits as well! 

Green Tea Facts:

  •  It Reduces Periodontal Inflammation
  •   It Kills Oral Cancer Cells
  •  It Inhibits the Formation of Dental Plaque
  •  It Repels Odor-Causing Bacteria

Studies have shown that just one cup of brewed green tea per day can reduce or slow down the process of gum recession, inhibit bacterial growth and can stop the recurrence of bleeding gums. Sounds promising and the added benefit is that green tea is refreshing and tastes great!  Now, remember not to drink the canned or bottled kind or sweetened tea as these have added ingredients and sugar.  The great benefits I've just outlined come from fresh brewed green tea.  

Enjoy, and Keep Smiling! 

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Question From Our Member - How Can I Be Sure That The Dental Instruments Are Sterile?

Questions From Our Members

J. Ochoa of Los Angeles, California asks: 

“My dentist office has an open floor plan (very low walls between operatories).  I noticed they don't have a lot of hand pieces (picks, explorers, mirrors, etc;).  They have a girl that takes the dirty ones out of the operatory and in just a few minutes comes back with the same tools (colored bands lead me to believe this) in a sterile bag.  How can I be sure that they are in fact sterile.”

Savon’s Answer

In the past I would have been very worried about that.  Most dental offices use an autoclave or chemiclave, the two leading methods of heat sterilization.  These methods can take as little as 30 minutes or up to 2 hours.

If your dental office can turn equipment around that fast, chances are the have a Statim.  This is one of the newer types of sterilization equipment.  Statim sterilizes handpieces and instruments for immediate use in as little as 8 minutes, reducing the number required as instruments can be processed ‘just in time’ or between patients.

You may want to ask your dental office what they use to sterilize their equipment.  As long as it's an autoclave (the newer ones can actually sterilize pretty fast) or a Statim, you have very little to worry about.

Originally posted to our May 2017 Newsletter!

Friday, May 5, 2017

Broken Dental Bridge.. Get It Fixed Sooner Than Later

I had a friend who recently went to the dentist with severe pain the area of her bridge. This pain has been present for a couple years but only when she chewed so she didn't think much of it. Eventually it got worse and worse to where the pain was unbearable, she was sick, her face was swollen and she couldn't eat.

Well, it turns out that for 2 years the bridge was actually broken. There was decay in the one tooth underneath her bridge and small pieces for trapped food which lead to a major infection. This made her really sick.
After almost 3 hours in the dentist chair and some oral surgery, they finally got her taken care of and have a new bridge on its way for her.

Just because a crown, implant or bridge is not "real" per-say doesn't mean that it can be ignored if something goes wrong with it. It should be treated and maintained just like a real tooth at all times.

If you have questions as to how to properly care for them, be sure to consult with your dentist.

Do We Really Need To Use a Tongue Scraper?

A "tongue scraper" is exactly what it sounds like.  A tool used to literally scrape bacteria off of the tongue surface, it's supposed to remove the gunk that collects on your tongue and help to keep your breath fresh.  They come in many styles, shapes and sizes and you can get them anywhere you can buy a tooth brush.  If you've never used one though, apparently you're not missing much.  I am personally a fan of the tongue scraper.  I like the extra clean feeling I get after using one, so this news came as a little bummer to me...

According to a study published in an issue of General Dentistry (a peer-reviewed dental journal), tongue scrapers only slightly reduce bad breath.  The most common reason for bad breath is post-nasal drip.  It coats the back of your tongue causing what is called " oral malodor."  Tongue scrapers remove this mucous layer quite well, however the results are only temporary.  But according to this study, using a toothbrush can get you the same temporary results, making the ever elusive "tongue scraper" seem not-so-special. 

That being said, one isn't better than the other, it really comes down to personal preference.  I, for instance, will be continuing to love my tongue scraper..  But for those of you who'd rather save the extra few bucks and use a toothbrush, you're in the clear.

Keep Smiling!   :)

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Can Lipstick Help Brighten A Smile?

Who doesn't want to have a beautiful, sparkling smile?

The truth is, some people no matter how many times they brush their teeth or use whitening strips are prone to natural pale yellow teeth. Luckily for us ladies we have the power of lipstick!

I came across an article explaining how the different shades of lipstick can affect how your teeth look!

Below are the shades you will want to use to make your teeth seem pearly white:
  • Rich reds and berry hues -  These colors in enhance the smile and are perfect for a job interview, first date and a night out on the town!
  • Blue and Violet undertones - Lip colors with blue undertones will counteract with yellow teeth, making your smile appear instantly white. 
  • Nude shiny glosses - This color gives you a nice friendly/approachable look and helps create the illusion teeth are shinier they they actually are.
Lip color fails:
  • Coral/orange - This shade has the tendency to wash you out.
  • Pale pink - This shade accentuated stains. 
Who knew you could fake a whiter smile with a simple beauty product!

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Digital Dentistry-Advanced Technology At Its Best

Dentistry has never been an exact science, but it's getting closer! With the introduction of digital equipment and qualified personnel to manage it, both doctor and patient are reaping the benefits.  Intra-oral cameras, 3D imagery, and virtual restoration software makes for more precise diagnoses and treatment, meaning less pain and trauma for the patient.
With these advancements it is now possible for the dentist to produce same-day crowns from a 3D digital model of your tooth, using a small square ceramic block.  The computer can match the dimensions exactly. He can create digital dentures. Although these generally cannot be done in a day, the process is definitely more precise.  He can take a digital x-ray or scan of your face and jaw and virtually rebuild your mouth with implants, allowing you to see the finished product on a screen before treatment even begins!  All of this technology comes at a hefty cost, however.  It can cost upwards of $150,000 to $200,000 to equip a dental office with this type of software and machinery. Of course, the cost is passed on to the patient in different ways, but, wouldn't you rather have a well fitting set of dentures as opposed to a loose pair that you can't wear?  Or a crown that fits like the permanent tooth you once had? Or implants that function and feel like a brand new set of natural teeth?  Worth the cost, in my opinion.  Feel free to weigh in! I welcome your opinion.

As Always, Keep Smiling!

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Never Let an Abscessed Tooth Go Untreated!

Of all of the dental problems one can have, abscesses are among the most dangerous and unpredictable. Often times, people will let tooth pain go for a lengthy period of time and will not see a dentist until their pain is severe and an abscess has developed. Other times, an abscess can develop seemingly overnight. In rarer instances, an abscess can be growing under a tooth without the patient suffering severe pain and the only symptoms may be too subtle to notice by the untrained eye.... The danger in letting an abscess go untreated is that serious complications can arise. The following list should make someone sit up and pay attention!

If left untreated, abscesses can cause:

1. Loss of the tooth
2. Fever, chills
3. Spread of infection to jawbone (serious infection can cause disfigurement)
4. Spread of infection to brain, heart or lungs (extremely dangerous, can cause death!)
5. Excessive swelling leading to blockage of airway or inability to eat or drink

You cannot be too careful with a toothache, or even a can lead to an abscess.
If you or anyone you know has a toothache, don't let it progress to an abscess! If dental care is not immediately available, go to an urgent care center or the ER for treatment! Abscesses can become life threatening!

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Tuesday Dental Humor!

What do dentists call their x-rays?

What do you call a bear with no teeth?
A Gummy Bear

When is the best time to go to the dentist?
Tooth Hurty

What does the dentist of the year get?
A little plaque

What did the judge sat to the dentist?
Do you swear to pull the tooth, the whole tooth and nothing but the tooth.

Hope you have a great Tuesday and remember to smile while you still have teeth;)

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Tooth Sensitivity

A study conducted back in 2014 showed that roughly 1 in 8 adults suffer from some type of tooth sensitivity.

I have tooth sensitivity but it only occurs with extremely cold things such as biting into a ice cream cone or drinking something that is ice cold. 

Tooth sensitivity is usually caused by worn down tooth enamel from brushing to hard, tooth erosion do to acidic foods and beverages, and gum erosion that leaves the root exposed. 

I'm guilty of the fist two, I  brush my teeth way to hard and I drink way to much soda. 

If you suffer from sensitive teeth you know the pain it causes so here are some tips for easing the pain:

  • Check your brushing technique - Brushing to hard is almost as bad for your teeth and gums as not brushing at all. Brushing to hard can contribute to receding gums leaving the root exposed...OUCH. If you are a hard brusher like myself you should change to a soft bristled brush also known as the periodontal toothbrush. 
  • Minimize acidic foods and drinks - Reducing the amount of acidic foods and drinks is important not only for your oral health but also for your overall health. If don't want to reduce your intake you should always rinse with water afterwards or in between drinks.
  • Change toothpaste - I know everyone is set on their favorite brand of toothpaste but sometimes you have to make a change, if you are using a whitening toothpaste you can be making your sensitivity worse because the whitening toothpastes are abrasive. I personal love the Sensodyne pronamel toothpaste and over the years I have noticed a change. 

If you are experiencing any type tooth sensitivity its important to see you dentist, its better to get treated early then have many problems later down the road.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

What Gets More Attention, Your Hair Or Teeth?

This is a question to ponder for sure. Think about it. How long do you spend in the morning doing your hair? How long do you spend brushing your teeth?

As beautiful as your hair is and as good as it makes you look everyday, your smile is just as noticeable. People are turned off more by bad teeth than are imperfect hair. If you are in the sales or customer service industry that could be a big deal for you.

The ADA and most dentist recommend that you spend 2 minutes brushing your teeth at least 2 times per day. Think about that when you are there in the morning getting ready to start your day. 2 more minutes can save you a lot of money at the dentist and help give you that winning smile!

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Coenzyme Q-10 For Your Fight Against Gum Disease

I am always looking for natural, effective ways to heal the body without the use of drugs.  I found this while searching for a supplement to help heal gum disease.
Coenzyme Q-10 is essential to the body to help build new cells.  It is a component that can reduce inflammation and assist in healing infection. Gingivitis and Periodontitis are bacterial diseases of the gums.  There are lots of ways to prevent and treat gum disease, such as regular cleanings, scaling, root planing and topical rinses. However, for those who prefer a more holisitc approach, consider Coenzyme
Here is a link to an article explaining the health benefits of taking a Coenzyme Q-10 supplement.

Always check with your doctor and/or your dentist before taking any supplement, and, as always,
Keep smiling!

Monday, April 17, 2017

Dental Care Instruction For Kids

Believe it or not this is a topic that isn't always discussed between a parent and a child! Many times a dentist will find that a child has never been taught to brush correctly (if at all) or to floss regularly, which lends to the theory that good dental hygiene is lacking in many aspects (as well as age groups) when it comes to proper oral care. {If a parent isn't properly instructed, he can't pass the knowledge along to the child.} That said, we all know how difficult it can be to get a child to brush, bathe, change his socks,, in acknowledement of that, the Colgate company has made some instructional videos about the importance of brushing and the proper way to take care of teeth for children. They have a wonderful, interactive site. Check it out at

As always, Keep Smiling!!

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Did You Know?

April is Oral Cancer Awareness Month!

Approximately 49,750 people in the United States will be diagnosed with oral cancer this year? That's about 132 people a day and one person will die from it every hour of the day -  24/7/365.

According to the American Cancer Society, the average age of people diagnosed with this type of cancer is 62 years old.  Some risk factors of developing oral cancer can include: smoking of any type, chewing tobacco, excessive consumption of alcohol, family history of oral cancer, excessive sun exposure and the Human papillomavirus (HPV)

Some of the most common symptoms of oral cancer are:
  • Patches in the mouth (White, red or speckled)
  • Bleeding of the mouth
  • Swelling, thickening, bumps or sore spots in the mouth
  • Difficulty chewing and swallowing
  • Sore throat or change in voice
  • Dramatic wight loss
Most dentist due screenings during every oral exam but if you notice any new and unusual spots in your mouth its very important to contact your dentist right away and ask them to do a oral cancer screening.  

Statistics can be found here and here.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Will You Lose Your Teeth To Gum Disease-Just Like Your Parents?

How many of us remember our parents wearing dentures in their thirties and forties? I do! I wonder how often a dentist hears that from a patient on a daily basis.  Most of us in the baby boomer generation have at least one parent who lost their teeth due to gum disease. Now...treatment way back then wasn't what it is today. That said, we no longer have to accept that we'll lose our teeth too...or that we're doomed.
There are many factors that can put you at risk for gum disease.  Most can be controlled, some cannot.  One of the major factors in gum disease is heredity.  If you are predisposed to it, (maybe a parent or grandparent or a sibling has the disease) then try as you might to brush and floss and have regular dental visits, you may still wind up with some form of periodontal disease in your lifetime. That is not to say that it isn't manageable or treatable. Thanks to technology, there is even a form of genetic testing that can predict whether you are at risk!  As with any disease, early detection is the key to successful treatment. Just because your parents wore dentures at a young age doesn't mean that you will!

The following is a list of other factors, including genetics, that may put you at a greater risk of contracting gum disease:

Genetics - If a parent or grandparent has it, start early with regular cleanings and exams.  Stay with a healthy regimen to prevent it if possible. Aggressive prevention...this is key.

Age - People over 50 are at higher risk and among other things, bone loss and receding gums may play a role.

Medications - did you know there are certain heart medications, anti-depressants and certain types of birth control meds that can have an effect on your oral health?  Be sure to let your dentist know if you are taking these types of prescriptions.

Smoking and Chewing Tobacco - Chewing tobacco is pretty much a given for gum disease, but smoking can be just as bad.  If you are a tobacco user, you should probably have your teeth cleaned more often than the recommended twice per year. Being a smoker also puts you at higher risk for other oral infections.

Poor Nutrition - If you eat poorly or have a deficiency in certain vitamins and nutrients, you could be at risk for periodontal disease.

Inflammatory Diseases - Diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes and heart disease, as well as lupus, MS and many others can affect your oral health.  Not to mention viral diseases such as HIV or Hepatitis.  Good oral care is extremely important for anyone with a lowered immune system.

Bruxism/Teeth Grinding -  Many people do this unconsciously, day and night. It can facilitate a breaking down of the bone structure in the jaw and cause the gums to become irritated and infected. It is treatable!  Ask your dental provider about being fitted with a night-guard device that can help you to stop grinding!

Try to stay as informed as possible.  Talk to your dental care provider about prevention of gum disease.

Keep Smiling!

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Are You Brushing Your Teeth Effectively?

Believe it or not you can damage your teeth and gums if you brush too hard or use a hard bristled toothbrush every time you brush.  The consequences can sometimes be painful.  Brushing too hard can cause the gums to recede prematurely, causing pain and sensitivity.  Over a period of time you can also cause abrasion (scratches on the teeth) that can be permanent.  Many people do this without realizing that they may be causing harm to their teeth and gums. The effects are not always immediate.  It can take years for problems to manifest, often it's too late to reverse the damage. In contrast, you can also brush too softly, leaving behind plaque and tartar. How do you know if you are doing it correctly?
Here's an interesting note: If you ever wonder whether you are actually removing all the plaque from your teeth when you brush, there is a product available now that is called a "disclosing tablet".  It dissolves in your mouth and turns all the plaque red so that you can see exactly where you need to brush!  All you have to do is brush until the red is gone, (not hard, of course) and then rinse!  Here is a link to a source online where you can get the tablets.
Try to use a soft bristle toothbrush and take it easy on those pearly whites!

Keep Smiling!

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Is Watermelon Good For Your Oral Health?

In our Savon monthly newsletter, I did an article about the health benefits of watermelon and while I was researching, I came across a little section about how watermelon is good for your teeth. I found this interesting so I decided to look into it a little more.

In my article I mentioned that watermelon was a super food that contained high amounts of water, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. So here are a few reasons why watermelon is good for your oral health!

Water Content - Watermelon contains about 92 % of water. This high water content helps rinse your mouth to prevent bacteria.

Vitamin C - Studies have shown that low vitamin C concentrations have been linked to gum disease. Since watermelon is high in vitamin C, eating this fruit can help reduce your risk of getting gum disease. Vitamin C also works to inhibit the formation of tartar and plaque on the teeth.

Natural Toothbrush - Watermelon is fibrous, which means when you're eating it, it's actually scrubbing your teeth. This is a perfect snack after a meal!

The above material was provided for informational purposes only. This is not intended to to take the place of your daily oral health routine. You still need to brush and floss daily along with visiting your dentist every six months for your check ups!

Friday, March 24, 2017

Different Types Of Dental Specialists

There are many different types of dental specialist out there, all of which have a fancy dental term that you may be unfamiliar with. Here are some of the more common ones and what they do:

Endodontist:  Root Canal Specialist
Orthodontist:  Braces, Retainers Etc.
Oral Surgeon: Dental Surgery including extractions
Prosthodontist: Cosmetic Dentistry, Dentures, Bridges, Crowns
Periodontist: Gum Disease and Perio Treatments
Pediodontists: Children’s Dental Specialist

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Is A Second Opinion Worth The Money?

In an era of high and rising dental costs and community desire to save money on that cost, it begs to ask the question if getting a second opinion on a diagnosis is worth the investment. Well, this is one of two answer questions, yes and no. It really comes down to the procedure you are seeking a second opinion about. Let me lay out a couple of examples of when it would be good to obtain one and when it would be good to pass on it.
When a second opinion is worth money: If you are sent to specialist for a procedure that you are unsure if you are comfortable with. Different dentists have different abilities, levels of comfortability and technology in their office. All of these factors play into the way the go about your treatment. For example, some dentists are comfortable doing a root canal on a back molar, other dentists are not comfortable doing it and will refer you to specialist to have it done.

When a second opinion is not worth money: When you over utilize it to try to find they dentist that will tell you what you want to hear and charge you the amount you wish to pay. Another way, is because you don’t believe or trust your dentist. At that point, you should be looking for another dentist that you can trust.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

The Psychology of Color in the Dental Office

Have you ever wondered why your dental office is decorated a certain way...or maybe why it isn't?  The fact is, color can make a waiting room or an operatory look inviting, or make you want to turn and run!  Imagine that you walked in to a dental office for the first time and the walls were say, a dark shade of ming orange and the chairs were red.  You might immediately turn around and head for the door and see that the accent wall is, eeek!  A deep shade of purple.  Now there is a dentist in serious need of a decorator!
So, would you immediately distrust that dentist?  He or she may be the best technical dentist in the state, but the fact is, color speaks volumes to a patient in a waiting room, and first impressions are everything. There is actually a psychology to color in the medical/dental world.
Green, in pale variations, is a relaxing color.  Seafoam is very popular and is also relaxing.  Blue denotes honesty and security and softer shades of pink and mauve are calming. In contrast, red in darker shades is an angry can enhance an already bad mood, or make an anxious patient more anxious. The idea is that it should be inviting and you should have a sense of being in good hands immediately when you walk in.
Now, that is not to say that you should turn and run if the colors are wrong, but in case you ever wondered why you may feel a certain way or get a certain impression when you walk in to a dental facility, it could be the decor!

Keep smiling!

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Yoga For Better Oral Health!

Yoga is a popular form of exercise that helps strengthen the body, helps with flexibility, helps ease body pain and helps improve posture and balance. But did you know that yoga can help improve your oral health?

Below are some interesting ways yoga can help improve your oral health:

  • Reduces Jaw Pain - Poor posture can cause the lower jaw to move forward eventually causing jaw pain also known as TMJ. Certain yoga poses can help with posture which will take the strain off the jaw.
  • Dry Mouth - Stress is a major factor in causing dry mouth. Dry mouth occurs when there is not enough saliva being produced. Saliva is very important because it helps wash away bad bacteria that is has accumulated. Yoga relaxes the body and mind which increases saliva production eliminating dry mouth. 
  • Reduces Inflammation - Inflammation is the body's attempt at self protection. Bacteria in the mouth can cause gum inflammation. Yoga is believed to help reduce inflammation due to stress. 
Yoga needs to be preformed daily to see any results!

Click here for more information!

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Ever been bored while waiting to see the dentist?

Have you ever been in this situation? You are sitting in the waiting room at your dentist's office and start to get bored. You then realize that you have forgotten to bring a book or something else to keep you occupied. The magazines are 2-3 months old and there is not any that you like. I know I have been there before. I have created a list of things that you can do to help pass the time of that dreadful wait. Try them out and let me know which one works the best!

1. See how many different words you can make out of the phrases on the signs hanging on the wall. For example, if there is a sign that says "payment is due at the time service is rendered", see how many words you can make out of that phrase. (team, meat, serve, pending) just to name a few.

2. Engage yourself in a magazine scavenger hunt. Pick a topic or a name and count how many times it is referenced in the mountain of magazines that surround you. (President Obama is one that can keep you occupied for hours)

3. If you brought your cellphone, update and clean up your contact's list. That is something that people always mean to do, just never find the time.

4. Correct and complete the puzzles in the magazines that other people "attempted" to do.

5. Play "name the noise". When you hear a sound coming out of one the exam rooms, try to identify it. (If you are unable to do so, chances are very good that you will experience it first hand very soon).

Some dental centers have created an office theme that is designed to keep you occupied and take your mind off the dental work that you are about to endure. However, if you are stuck in a boring waiting room, give these a suggestions a try. Feel free to comment with more ideas so 

Monday, March 13, 2017

Is Trench-Mouth a Real Disease?

It's a common term that we don't hear very frequently anymore, but many people do not know that it's a real disease that most commonly affects the younger crowd, ages 25 and under. Less commonly, it has been known to affect people older than that.
It is a bacterial infection of the gums, characterized by painful sores of the mouth and surrounding mucous membranes, bleeding, foul breath, increased salivation and difficulty in swallowing and talking. Some causes are poor oral hygiene, stress, poor nutrition, smoking and immune deficiency. It can be treated effectively by your dentist with antibiotics and oxygenating rinses.
Proper hygiene is one of the best preventive strategies!

Here's an interesting fact:
The term "Trench mouth" actually came from epidemics that began among soldiers in the field during World War II where proper hygiene was not always possible, and conditions were unsanitary.

Friday, March 10, 2017

A Dry Socket is No Fun! Try Aspirin!

If you've ever had a tooth pulled, or multiple teeth including wisdom teeth, you may know how painful a dry socket can be.  There is a home remedy you can try if you can't go directly to the dentist..(i.e. maybe it's a weekend, or during the night.)  As it turns out, this is yet another use for aspirin!

According to instructions I read online, crush an aspirin and mix it with a tablespoon of purified water and a dash of salt.  Soak up the solution with a cotton ball and place it directly on the socket. If you have stitches, this may be difficult but you can use a syringe to drizzle the solution over the area or you can swish the solution (VERY gently!) over the affected socket for a few minutes.  Aspirin works rather quickly, so it won't take long and the pain will be diminished if not completely gone. 

Enjoy, and keep smiling!

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Importance Of Senior Dental Health

It seems as people age their dental care became less important and general health becomes top priority. One thing many people don't know is your dental health plays a major role in whole-body health. With this in mind, is very important for our aging loved ones to keep dental health a priority.

Here are some reasons why senior dental care is important:

  • Heart Disease - Research has shown there is a link between heart disease and tooth decay. According to the American Academy of Periodontology, people with periodontal disease are almost twice likely to have Coronary Artery Disease.
  • Pneumonia - Poor oral health has been linked to pneumonia in older adults. 
  • Dry Mouth - Usually linked from medications and cancer treatments.
  • Denture induced Stomatitis - Caused by poor fitting dentures.
How to improve Senior Dental Care? 
  • Brush teeth twice a day with a soft bristled toothbrush.
  • Clean between teeth at least once a day with floss or a dental pick.
  • Rinse with a mouthwash.
  • If used- remove dentures and let them soak in a cleaner then scrub.
  • Visit the dentist every six months for a routine cleaning.
The mouth is a window to the rest of the body, that's why its important to maintain a healthy mouth!

Full Article click here!

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Is Going To Bed Without Brushing Your Teeth Bad?

Brushing our teeth is a natural habit but sometimes we forget to brush before we hit the sack this can be due to laziness, exhaustion, or forgot to pack your toothbrush on vacations.

So, what happens to the mouth if you don't brush at night?

Bacteria live in the mouth and builds up all day causing plaque. Plaque is very acidic and starts breaking down tooth enamel causing cavities and tooth decay.

Obviously this wont happen if you forget to brush one night but this is a warning for those who don't brush at night. Taking the two extra minutes to brush will save your mouth and wallet in the future.

Here are some tips for laziness and exhaustion:

  • Leave a toothbrush in your night-stand - You don't toothpaste just a quick once over is better then nothing.
  • Keep a flossing stick in your night-stand - This will help remove the food particles in between your teeth and gums. 
  • Run your tongue over your teeth -To help reduce the amount of plaque that attaches to teeth.
Tips for forgotten toothbrush:
  • Contact front desk of the hotel (if staying in one) they usually keep some for situations like this.
  • Use a washcloth - Wrap a corner around your index finger and add toothpaste, then brush like normal. 
  • Use your finger - Add toothpaste to your index finger and brush like normal.
  • Rinse with mouthwash - Although this is not a method of brushing, moutheash does kill off bacteria.

Friday, February 24, 2017

When to file a complaint with the Dental Board

I thought this might be worth re-posting, as so many people these days tend to over-react to situations that they feel they are not in control of.  It doesn't apply to everyone, certainly, but nonetheless, I think it bears repeating.

Too often when a patient encounters a problem with a dentist, he/she will go directly to the Dental Board of Examiners before exploring other options for resolution. This is a very time consuming and tedious process, for both the patient and the doctor. There is almost always another way! Here are some tips for resolving issues with your dentist:
  • Make sure the problem is the kind of issue that warrants a complaint with the board. Issues such as billing, overbooking appointments and rudeness by office staff are NOT reasons for a Dental Board complaint. These types of complaints can usually be resolved with a verbal or written complaint to the office manager. If this is not effective, then a written complaint to the owner/corporate entity will usually do the trick.
  • If the issue is a quality of care issue, and you feel that you are due a refund or wish for the doctor to re-do the procedure or replace an inferior product, the first option is to try to discuss the problem with the doctor directly, bypassing the office staff. Be clear and concise. State what you believe is the problem and let the doctor know what you expect him to do. Lack of communication is the number one problem in these types of disputes.
  • If the above option fails, try putting your complaint in a formal written letter, addressed directly to the doctor (never the center or office manager) and send it certified mail, registered (so only he/she can sign) and request a return receipt. Again, state very clearly in your letter of complaint exactly what the issue is and what you would like the doctor to do. Let him/her know that you are aware of all of your options and that you are attempting a resolution before you take the problem to a higher level. You will most definitely get his attention.  Make sure to give the doctor ample time to address the letter. 10 days is usually sufficient, though it doesn't usually take that long. In my years of working in this field, I have found that this option is almost always the most effective.
  • Always try to be open to compromise. 

Remember, don't make a hasty decision! Go to the Board of Dental Examiners ONLY after you have exhausted all avenues for resolving the problem. 

As always, keep smiling!  

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Unaffordable Dental Expenses for the Elderly - An Editorial

With our volatile economy, things are bad enough, but it is so much worse for those on limited and fixed incomes, and the real travesty is that there is very little help available for those in need of serious dental care. Medical care can be much easier to obtain.
Dental treatment is fast becoming one of the most costly of all areas in the medical industry. Basic restorative treatment is becoming a thing of the past, with dentists and dental specialists opting for the higher end products and procedures. Root canals, crowns and implants are exorbitantly high priced, as are dentures and prosthetic devices. Having worked in the dental industry as long as I have, I'm well aware of the cost of materials vs. the mark-up.  It's ridiculous, and there is no regulatory agency that can help to even out the cost to make it more affordable. In fact, dental specialists are among the highest priced professionals in the country.  The elderly are probably the most affected by this. They are literally forced to spend money they don't have and are finding that there are limited resources to help with the funding of  treatments and procedures, as government based organizations generally will not cover anything other than extractions for adults.
A good Dental Plan can go a long way toward reducing costs for the elderly, but the fact is, sometimes it just isn't enough. Consequently, many elderly dental patients will go outside of the country to places such as Mexico, or will simply go without the care they need, thereby affecting their overall health. 
No doubt we all know of an elderly family member or friend that has had this problem.

So, the question? How long can this continue?  When insurance is of little or no help and money is limited, there must be an alternative somewhere.  Any ideas anyone? 

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Missing A Tooth? You Get An Implant Or A Bridge

When you lose one of your permanent teeth you do have a couple of options beyond just walking around with a hole in your mouth for the rest of your life.

There are 2 basic options that you have, an implant or a bridge. Here is the difference between them.

Bridge: A bridge basically "bridges the gap" that was left by the missing tooth. This is accomplished by grinding down the teeth on the sides of the gap and making them into anchoring teeth (abutment teeth). Those 2 teeth are the crowned with a 3 part crown with the middle being a false tooth that closed the gap from the missing tooth.

The advantage of the bridge is that it saves you from having to have oral surgery. The disadvantage is that you have to have 2 crowns put on to teeth that really didn't need them.

Implant: A little more complex and requires some oral surgery. A post is drilled into the jawbone to hold the crown in place. Then a crown is secured on top of that.

The advantage of an implant is that you have that tooth replaced without having to get caps on the other 2 teeth. With the post, it does make it more durable. The disadvantage is that it is a lengthy process that requires multiple visits to your dentist and specialist.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017


Veneers are thin shells of tooth colored material designed to be placed over the natural tooth to improve smiles!

Why would someone want to get veneers? 
  • To cover stained or discolored teeth
  • Repair chipped or damaged teeth
  • Close gaps between teeth
  • Straighten and align teeth
Process of veneers?
  • Can take one or two appointments.
  • The dentist will clean the teeth and determine the correct shade for the veneers.
  • They will remove a small amount of enamel on the teeth to make room to place the veneers.
  • An impression will be taken and sent to the laboratory meanwhile a temporary veneer will be placed until the new porcelain veneers are ready.
  • When the new veneers are at the dental office the dentist will remove the temporary veneer and bond the new veneers to the teeth.
Care for your veneers the same as you would your natural teeth. 

*Veneers are not forever, they will need to be replaced at some point no matter how well you take care of them. 

Monday, February 13, 2017

Protect Your Toothbrush During Flu Season

The flu season is among us and I was one that fell victim to it's not so welcoming arrival. The on-set is quick and it packs quite a punch. Although there are many ways to combat it and even avoid getting it all together, there is one avenue that is often overlooked, your toothbrush.

One thing that I noticed when I was down with the flu was that I spent a lot of time in the bathroom. Whether it was to use the facility, shower, allow my last meal to resurface, get medication or just splash some water on my face, the bathroom was my room of choice. I am sure you all know what I mean. In the bathroom too is where I spent most of the time coughing and sneezing.

Luckily I live alone so I didn't have to worry about infecting anyone else, but for those of you who don't, you should really keep something in mind. Is your toothbrush out in the open in the bathroom? If it is, like mine is, then when that family member is in the bathroom sneezing and coughing the virus could infect your toothbrush. Then, despite your best effort to quarantine yourself off from the your sick loved one, as soon as you use your toothbrush you now run the risk of being infected.

So just keep that in mind when you or someone in your family comes down with the flu this year. Quarantine yourself and your toothbrush too, because let me tell you.. this is not one flu virus that you want to get. Trust me on that one.

Lastly, always remember to replace your toothbrush after you are feeling better. The last thing you want to is have it coming back for a round 2.

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Surprising Uses for Whitening Toothpaste-Who Knew?

Here are five toothpaste "hacks" that may not be commonly known. I may just have to try some of these myself!
  • Remove crayon from painted walls.  All you need is some toothpaste and a damp cloth, buff lightly then rinse the area.  Off it goes!
  • Scuffs on linoleum or tile floors.  Again, just a little toothpaste and a damp cloth.  Works like a charm.
  • Fingernails and Toenails.  This one I wish I had thought of myself!  Wet an old (emphasis on old) toothbrush, add toothpaste and generously apply to fingernails and toenails. Wait a few minutes, then scrub a little bit.  Rinse.  They will look fresh and bright!  It takes away the yellowing effect. Of course it would!  It works on teeth, right? I love this!
  • Clean jewelry.  It shines up diamonds and gold just as good as any jewelry cleaner would, and you already have it in your cabinet.  
  • Headlight haze.  How many of us pay good money to have the headlights treated after yellowing and scratching occurs?  Buff it out with toothpaste. If nothing else, you may be able to put off the expensive treatment for awhile. 
  • Skunk Spray Deodorizer.  Never would have thought of this one! The instructions I read are as follows: If your pet encounters a skunk, try this.  Wet him down, rub toothpaste into his fur, then rinse. Apparently the fluoride helps to eliminate some of the odor.  Not sure about this one.  I'd check with the vet first.  Some toothpaste contains xylitol, which is known to be a health risk for pets.
Keep Smiling! 

Dental Floss Sewing Kit Hack

I was scrolling through Pinterest last night and I came across this neat dental floss sewing kit hack. Nothing is worse then having your clothes rip or losing a button in the middle of the day and not having anything to fix it with.

Here is how to make a portable sewing kit!

  1. Peel off the label from the container.
  2. Open the container and reuse the spindle the floss was originally on. *Glue a grommet to each end, this will help you wind the thread on to the spindle without the thread falling off, after the thread is wound on remove the grommet (will not close correctly if left on)
    1. dental floss sewing kit hack
  3. Cut a small piece of elastic or ribbon and hot-glue it to one side of the container. This is the needle holder.
    1. dental floss sewing kit hack
    2. dental floss sewing kit hack
  4. Place the spindle back into the container with the thread running counter clock-wise.
    1. dental floss sewing kit hack
  5. When you need to sew, open the container grab your needle and cut the the thread the same way you would the floss!
    1. dental floss sewing kit hack
Click here for full directions and pictures!

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Is Your Toothache Killing You? It Could Literally!

It's hard to imagine how a toothache can turn deadly, but even the slightest pain can quickly turn serious if not taken care of.

Studies have shown that hundreds of thousands of people are hospitalized each year for infections of the tooth's root which is known as a periapical abscess. This abscess is commonly found around untreated tooth decay and can be deadly in the infection spreads. Infections can spread to your jaw, neck, lungs and brain.

Monday a California man passed away from a tooth infection that spread to his lungs.  The article states that he was experiencing a toothache after he left his home in California for a work trip to New York. The pain became so bad that he stopped  at a dental office in Oklahoma where they prescribed him with antibiotics.  Days later the pain was so bad he asked his brother to make the trip back to California with him but they ended up at a hospital in Utah where he eventually passed earlier this week.

Remember it's better to have a toothache treated when it's treatable rather then waiting until it's life-threatening.

To read the full article click here!