Wednesday, March 31, 2021

TMJ Troubles? Try Massage.

 If you suffer from TMJ, Bruxism or a misaligned jaw, you know that the pain associated with it is no joke!  Many people complain of headaches, muscle fatigue and clenching of the jaw.  Chewing food, yawning and sometimes swallowing and talking can be painful. 

As remedies go, what works for some won't always work for others but there is one treatment that seems to get positive reviews all across the board.  Massage!  It is not a cure all for the disease, however it can reduce pain and swelling and make movement of the jaw less painful. 
Look for a massage therapist in your area that is trained for TMJ, or, if you are into the self-care movement, there are plenty of online tutorials that explain how you can do your own massage.  Find something that works for you but always check with your dental provider first!

Keep Smiling!

Thursday, March 25, 2021

Tips On How To Clean Your Retainer!

 Do you wear a retainer? Do you clean it every day? Many people who wear retainers do not clean them every day... GROSS! To put it into perspective, having a dirty retainer is like not brushing your teeth. 

Below are some ways to clean your retainer:

  • Water for cleaning on the go - Although water will not disinfect a retainer it will help prevent bacteria from growing while it is out of the mouth.
  • Toothpaste - After you are finished brushing your teeth, gently brush your retainer. 
  • Denture Cleaner - Soak in denture cleaner for about 20 minutes. After it's removed from the solution gently scrub it with a soft-bristled toothbrush. 
  • Baking Soda - Mix water and baking soda together to create a paste. Gently scrub with a soft-bristled toothbrush. * it also whitens discolored retainers*
  • Vinegar - Soak for 20 min in equal parts white vinegar and warm water. Rinse then soak for another 20 minutes in cold water.



Wednesday, March 24, 2021

Dental Office Decor - How Important is it?

 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 color...it 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!

Thursday, March 18, 2021

What Is Ankyloglossia?

 Ankyloglossia is also known as tongue-tie or anchored tongue.

Tongue-tied is a short, thick band of tissue that is connected to the bottom of the tongue's tip to the floor of the mouth. This condition limits the tongue's range of motion.


Image result for tongue tied

Being tongue-tied in some cases can have serious effects on a person, by affecting the way a person eats, speaks, and even swallow. Not all cases are that way, some non-serious problems can be having difficulty sticking out his/her tongue or simply eating an ice cream cone.

Tongue-tie can be fixed by a simple surgical procedure and the recovery time is only about 24 hours.

I personally am tongue-tied and I experience non-serious problems such as; I can not lick an ice cream cone very well and I can not stick out my tongue past my lips. I have thought about getting the tongue release surgery but since I'm not having serious problems I don't see why I need that done at this point.

Help Your Child Build Strong, Healthy Teeth!

 Have you ever heard the old wives’ tale that women should expect to lose a tooth with each child?  Well as it turns out, long ago that belief was well rooted in reality! Now, however, this is a proven modern-day myth. Your baby actually gets the calcium he needs from your diet and if your diet does not contain enough calcium, the body will access the mineral from the supply in your bones, not from your teeth. But today, with careful management, most of us should be able to avoid losing our teeth. So what steps can you take to ensure that you keep your teeth in top condition, and what can you do for your child after he is born to keep his teeth healthy?

The following are some important points to remember for you and your child to ensure healthy teeth:

While you are pregnant:

Eat a healthy diet rich in calcium to keep the stores in your body at a healthy level. Dairy products and green leafy vegetables are good sources of calcium.

Brush and floss daily. It is important to keep plaque and tartar at bay. A healthy mouth will lead to a healthier baby!

Ages 0 To 10

STUDIES have shown that if we have tooth decay as babies, then we are more likely to get decay in our permanent teeth. Dental hygiene can and should begin with newborns. Bacteria can be removed by wrapping a piece of gauze around your finger and gently wiping the baby’s gum pads.

Apart from their food-processing function, baby teeth are important as space maintainers so that permanent teeth have a space to grow into. If these teeth are lost early through decay, the space may not be saved, so permanent teeth can drift - a problem more likely to lead to a need for braces later. Consequently, a baby’s sugar intake should be monitored, bearing in mind that even health foods such as milk and fruit contain sugars.

Baby toothbrushes with soft heads should be introduced as soon as teeth come through, along with specially formulated children’s toothpaste. These contain the optimal dose fluoride for youngsters.

Have their teeth cleaned regularly from the age of  2 years.  Regular dental screenings can prevent loss of teeth in early years, and helps get your child in the habit of practicing good dental hygiene.

Nursing Bottle Syndrome - a condition which causes rampant decay in a baby’s teeth - can occur from six months, and constant sweetened drinks are often blamed. Studies have shown that 50% of five and six year old children may have erosion of their front milk teeth - a condition that can cause pain and sensitivity. At around the age of six, the first molar teeth start to appear. These can be sealed with a plastic coating, known as fissure sealant, to prevent decay.

Overall, good hygiene for both mother and baby is essential to healthy teeth. The better their teeth when they are young, the longer they will keep them as adults!! In my line of work, I encounter people almost daily in their 90's who still have their own teeth. In part because of a healthy lifestyle and partly because of amazing technology and advancement in dentistry.

Keep Smiling!

Friday, March 12, 2021

Tea Tree Oil For Dental Health?

If you follow your dentist's recommendations on cleaning and flossing your teeth then you should have healthy gums and strong teeth.

There are many ways to keep your mouth healthy but one natural remedy is using tea tree oil. Tea tree oil is taken from the leaves of a Melaleuca Alternifolia plant that is native to Australia. This plant is known for its natural disinfectant and has been used for many years in the medical and dental professions as an antiseptic.

Tea tree oil has many benefits for your dental health:
  • Helps prevent plaque - The oil fights off microorganisms that destroy tissues in the mouth which cause plaque, receding gums, and tartar deposits. 
  • Helps eliminate bad breath - Using tea tree oil as a mouthwash has anti-deodorant properties.
  • Helps prevent gum disease - 
    • Rub a small amount of tea tree oil on swollen/sore gums.
    • Add 3-5 drops of tea tree oil to a small glass of water and swish. Do this twice a day
    • Apply a few drops of tea tree oil directly onto your toothbrush and brush for at least to min. 
  • Helps relieve pain from toothaches - Rinse the mouth with a tea tree oil mixture (listed above) and then apply a small amount of Aloe Vera to the infected tooth. 
  • Mouth sores - Rinse mouth with a tea tree oil mixture (listed above).
*Remember this is just a remedy to keep your mouth healthy and should not replace your dentist.

For more information click here!

Tuesday, March 9, 2021

Do You Suffer From Plugged Ears While Flying?

If you're one of those people who may have problems clearing your ears on an airplane, here is a small list of things you can do to relieve the symptoms.
  • Yawning - the most effective way to clear the ears.
  • Swallowing
  • Chewing Gum
  • Valsalva Maneuver (aka, Plug your nose and blow!)
  • Nasal Sprays (relief for allergy sufferers)
  • Decongestants
Babies are not able to clear their ears on an airplane, but there are ways to help them get through the discomfort which typically is worse during assent and descent. Using the following techniques during take-off and landing may help:
  • Bottle feeding
  • Pacifiers
Plugged ears and sinuses can actually make your teeth hurt. Sinus pressure can cause pain in a variety of ways.  If you know you are susceptible, try following some of the suggestions above!

 Keep Smiling!!!

Thursday, March 4, 2021

Question From Our Member - Why Did My Dentist Prescribe Sinus Medication?

 Questions From Our Members

R. Blackwood of Topeka, Kansas asks: 

“I went to the dentist for a toothache.  They took some x–rays and prescribed me some sinus medication.  Can a sinus infection really cause a toothache?”

Savon’s Answer

Yes, a sinus infection (sinusitis) or inflammation can cause a toothache — specifically in the upper rear teeth, which are close to the sinuses.  In fact, pain in the upper teeth is a fairly common symptom with sinus conditions.  Since you went to your dentist with a toothache, we suggest that you follow your dentist´s advice.

Original post is in our March 2021 Newsletter!

Tuesday, March 2, 2021

Easy Home Remedies for Stained Dentures

 Many products made for cleaning dentures can be expensive and harsh.  If your dentures have metal parts, some commercial denture cleaners can cause them to corrode over time.  Here is a short list of inexpensive, reliable (old time, tried and true) products that you can use to clean, disinfect and even help remove tartar from your false teeth! (Yes, even false teeth can get a buildup of tartar over time, cultivating an unhealthy array of germs and bacteria.)

Here goes!:

1. BAKING SODA.  Make a paste with a little bit of the soda and water and use your denture brush to clean your dentures.  It will freshen, too.

2. VINEGAR.  Use equal parts of vinegar and water and soak your dentures for 20-30 minutes. This will also help to remove tartar buildup.

3. HYDROGEN PEROXIDE.  This is especially useful for disinfecting.  Soak in a 3% or 6% solution (the usual strength sold in stores) for approximately 30 minutes. Rinse thoroughly with water.

Now, there were a couple of other suggestions that I found online that I didn't think were particularly useful; that is, they were not things that I would personally try for cleaning something that you would put in your mouth! Someone on another website suggested a bleach/water solution for disinfecting and a teaspoon of Calgon water softener added for removing tartar. Of course you would need to rinse your dentures especially well so as not to get the bleach solution in your mouth. Hmmm...I don't know...  To me, that falls into the same catagory as fixing your dentures with super glue.  What do you think?