Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Got A Cavity? Get It Fixed Sooner Rather Than Later

I was in a networking meeting a couple weeks ago and giving the presentation was a hygienist from one the local dental centers who also a provider on the plan. He showed a very through presentation on the progression of a cavity.

A small cavity, when caught and fixed is not really a big deal. A simple filling and you are good to go. Relatively in expensive and easy to do. However, if that cavity is ignored, then it gets worse and that simple filling takes more time to fill, which usually means more drilling into your tooth. If that cavity is ignored even longer, then you are at risk of cracking a breaking the tooth as soon as you eat something that is hard and need a crown.

Eventually, an ignored cavity will get big to be able to fill and get down to the root. That's when you are in a lot pain, at risk for abscess or infection and will most likely need that dreaded root canal and a crown. We ALL know how expensive that can be.

Don't freak out just because you have a cavity. It is fixable as long as you do it soon. If you procrastinate then it will no only get worse. Timing is everything! Get your cavities fixed sooner rather than later!

Sunday, August 20, 2017

DYI Dental Dog Treats

Dental health is not only important for humans, its also important for our fur babies!

Are you tired of paying for those expensive dental treats from the store? Why not make your own?

Dental Treats for Dogs:

  • 3/12 Cups Brown Rice Flour
  • 1 tbls Food grade activated charcoal
  • 1/2 Cup of packed chopped parsley (or 1/4 cup dried)
  • 1/2 Cup packed chopped mint leaves (or 1/4 cup dried)
  • 1 Cup of chicken broth or water
  • 4 tbls coconut oil
  • 2 tablespoons of Liquid Chlorophyll
  • 1 Egg
If you cannot find activated charcoal and liquid chlorophyll, or if you do not feel comfortable feeding these to your dog, you can omit these from the recipe without any issue.
Directions:Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. In a large bowl mix together brown rice flour and activated charcoal and set aside.  Using a food processor, mix together the parsley, mint leaves, chicken broth, coconut oil and liquid chlorophyll.  This does not need to be super fine, so a few spins will do the trick.
Now, add the egg to the dry mixture, and then slowly add the wet ingredients to the mixture while stirring slowly.  Mix the dough until it starts to ball up.  Your dough should be fairly dry to the touch, and not sticky when it's done.
Flour your work surface and kneed the dough a bit.  Then roll it out into 3/8 inch thickness (you can go thinner if you like).  Cut out your shapes and place them onto your cookie sheet.
Bake these treats 30 minutes, then flip them and bake for an additional 30 minutes.  After that, turn you oven off and let the treats sit inside.  This will help completely dry them out and give them that extra crunch we are looking for.  Once your oven is cooled, you can pull out the treats!
*There are many different  recipes online, I just selected one!
Dental Treats for Cats:
Unfortunately I was unable to find any homemade recipes for cat dental treats but according to Veterinary Oral Health Council the best cat treats for dental are: Feline Greenies - Feline Dental Treats and Purina Pro Plan Dental Crunch Cat Snacks.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Is Your Dentist Prepared for a Chairside Emergency?

It isn't a common occurrence, necessarily.  But it does happen.  Medical emergencies in the dental chair can't always be prevented but the risks can be drastically reduced if the patient and the doctor are completely transparent and open with each other about illnesses, medication and health history. All dentists have at least some training for medical emergency treatment, however in addition he/she should have at least one staff member trained in CPR, and have an emergency plan in place which includes emergency phone numbers, a defibrillator, medications on hand and procedures to stop bleeding, etc. He should take your blood pressure reading and heart rate prior to treatment, and again after treatment. If administering general anesthesia, he should be anesthesia certified. Some states issue separate licenses for anesthesia. Always make sure he is certified, or that he has a certified anesthesiologist on staff!
That said, here are some helpful suggestions for the patient to remember when having a procedure done:

  • Disclose all medications that you take daily, even if it is just an aspirin or something over the counter. 
  • If you have ever had high blood pressure, let the dentist know!
  • If you suffer from acute anxiety, say so!  Many dentists cater to the anxious patient. Things can be done to help you with that. 
  • If you are pregnant, let him know!
  • If you have allergies to medications, let him know! 
  • If you have taken anything prior to your visit for relaxation....a sedative, an alcoholic beverage, marijuana....seriously, he needs this information. Many people will do this before a visit and not disclose it thinking it won't pose a problem. The dentist isn't going to judge you, but he is going to treat you and there is a serious liability factor involved, especially when it comes to anesthesia, so don't hold anything back!  

The medical history of the patient is the single most helpful thing for a dentist to have before treatment begins.  Your honesty is imperative.  He cannot effectively manage your treatment plan without this knowledge!

Keep Smiling!

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Dental Life Hacks!

  • Use inexpensive foam hair rollers to help improve your grip on small objects...like your toothbrush!
  • Use clothes pins to prevent your toothbrush from touching dirty counters while travelling!
  • Need a toothbrush squeezer?  Use a large binder clip or a bobby pin!
  • Use a utensil holder to organize toothbrushes in a drawer!
  • Remove crayon from a wall using toothpaste!
  • Use a new toothbrush to remove the cornsilk from a ear of corn!
  • Toothpaste can be used to remove odors from hands, dishes, baby bottles and other items!
  • Use dental floss to cut cakes, cheese and other soft solid foods!

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Make Your Dental Health a Priority!

If keeping up with your dental needs is a priority for you, or even if it is a new personal goal, stick with it!! In case you haven't noticed, even as the economy is improving,  the price of dentistry isn't getting any cheaper. If you have dental insurance or a dental plan, keep it! If you don't, now is the time to get it. It can help keep the rising cost of dental care down. It's more important than ever to have some type of coverage. Note: Dental plans are generally less expensive than insurance and tend to discount more procedures and products than traditional insurance. Below is a link to Savon Dental Plan. Let the facts speak for themselves! It's a very informative site and it doesn't cost you anything to learn!


How Can A Dentist Tell If You Have Health Problems?

Have you heard the saying the mouth is the window into ones overall health? That's right, your mouth is a tattletale ;)

When you get your dental examination the dentist isn't only looking at your teeth and gums. During dental examinations, dentists have been known to find evidence of many other problems such as heart or liver disease, diabetes, arthritis, HIV and many more.

So how can a dentist tell if you have underlying health problems?

  • Inflamed Gums and Loose Teeth - This can be a sign of heart disease. If you suffer from periodontists (gum disease) the bacteria in the gums can travel to the heart and contribute to coronary artery disease.  The bacteria could also increase the formation of clots from further plaques build up in the arteries that interferes with blood flow to the heart. 
  • Gum Disease, Bleeding Gums and Loose Teeth - These are all signs of diabetes. Diabetics have a slower time healing so any infection to the gums can contribute to heart disease or a stroke. 
  • Bleeding Gums, Dry mouth and Tooth Erosion - Dentist can spot a eating disorder with just one look at the mouth. The stomach acid from vomiting wears away the tooth enamel making teeth super sensitive. 
  • Rampant Caries, Dry Mouth and Lesions - These are signs of HIV. If not treated this can lead to infection of the soft tissue inside of the tooth (pulp) and the formation of an abscess.
Whether or not you have natural teeth or dentures, its very important to maintain good dental hygiene!