My BEST Dentists Journal


Symptoms of a Mouth Infection

When most people think of an infection, they think of being sick.  Unfortunately, many people do not include mouth infections in their idea of being sick.  The reasons for this are many.

Some people mistakenly assume that the mouth is separate from the rest of the body because it requires the care of a dentist instead of a medical doctor. Therefore, they think that problems in your mouth do not make you “sick”.

For others, it is simply the lack of the understanding that many dental problems actually are serious infections.

There are some people who believe that if nothing hurts, then nothing is wrong.

All of these misconceptions are dangerous because they cause people to overlook serious infectious diseases in the mouth.

What is an Infection?

An infection is the invasion of the human body by disease-causing microorganisms (including bacteria, viruses, and fungi among others).  These organisms multiply and produce toxins, which cause the body to respond with inflammation.

Like the gastrointestinal tract and the skin, the mouth is always full of microorganisms, and most of them are not bad.  Many bacteria are actually good for the body.  The term infection does not include these good organisms.  Infections involve bad bacteria that cause disease and destruction of the body’s tissues.  The most common infections in the mouth are caused by a wide variety of bacteria.  Fungal infections can often occur on the tongue, roof of the mouth, and corners of the lips.

What Dental Problems are Actually Infections?

Most dental problems are actually infectious diseases.  There are a few that can occur in the absence of bad microorganisms, like cracked teeth or TMJ problems.  The vast majority, though, are the result of an overgrowth of the wrong kinds of organisms in the mouth.


There are multiple types of bacteria associated with cavities, and the most common is Streptococcus mutans.  This bacteria adheres to the tooth in dental plaque (which is why brushing and flossing helps prevent cavities).  This bacteria ingests carbohydrates and produces a strong acid as the by-product.

Because these bacteria stick to the teeth, the acid comes into direct contact with the tooth and begins to soften and weaken the enamel.  Without intervention, the bacteria continue to multiply, producing more and more acid, which dissolves tooth structure.  As the process continues, the bacteria literally eats its way through a tooth, leaving a hole (or “cavity”) in its wake.  Unchecked cavities destroy the tooth itself.

Cavities become very dangerous when the bacteria reach the nerve and blood vessels in the hollow center of the tooth.  As they continue to multiply and spread, a large abscess can form.  In the most dangerous scenarios, the infection spreads into the airway, bloodstream or brain, causing death.

Gum Disease

Gum disease, which includes gingivitis and periodontal disease, is the body’s response to an infection of toxic bacteria in the gums.  As the bacteria collect in various crevices around the teeth, they produce toxins that destroy gum tissue and jawbone.  Once started, this process is impossible to stop without intervention by a dentist.

Gum disease does spread to nearby teeth and can develop abscesses, just like cavities can.  Unchecked gum disease destroys the foundation of the teeth, so even healthy teeth can simply fall out.

Candida Fungal Infections (Thrush)

Fungal infections are slightly less common than bacterial infections in the mouth.  They often occur on the roof of the mouth underneath a denture or partial.  Thrush commonly develops on the tongue in a person with a severely dry mouth or compromised immune system.  You can also experience an overgrowth of fungus in the corners of the mouth, called angular cheilitis.

Fungal infections cause a whitish buildup in the affected area and can be uncomfortable, if not outright painful.  This type of infection commonly affects the very young, the very old, and the very sick.

What Symptoms Indicate the Presence of a Mouth Infection?

The problem with dental problems is that they often occur without causing any symptoms in their early stages.  We always want to stress the importance of consistent dental evaluations so that you prevent any infections or catch them in the earliest stages.


A toothache or pain in your gums is a bad sign.  Because of the prevalence of cavities and gum disease, it is safe to assume that pain in your mouth is a symptom of an infection.  This is especially true for people who have not seen a dentist in over a year.


Any swelling in the gums is a red flag for infection.  If it is a small pimple-like swelling on the gums, you likely have an abscess from a tooth.  Swelling around multiple teeth where the gums meet the teeth is a sign of inflammatory gum disease.

Any swelling that affects the head or neck and is visible from outside the mouth is extremely dangerous.  Treat any such swelling as an emergency and seek urgent care!

Bleeding Gums

Healthy gums do not bleed.  Only the presence of inflammation causes bleeding of the gums, especially during normal oral hygiene like brushing and flossing.  The inflammation, which includes redness, swelling and tenderness, is the body’s natural response to toxins produced by the bacteria in dental plaque.

Bad Breath

Bad breath is the result of stinky gases produced by bacteria in the mouth.  Often these bacteria hide in the grooves and tiny crevices on the tongue or between the teeth.  The more bacteria present, the worse your breath will be.

Receding Gums and/or Loose Teeth

As gum disease progresses, the destruction of gum tissue and bone by bacterial toxins causes the gums to back away down the roots of the teeth.  This is often visible as receding gums, making the teeth appear longer.  As the gums and bone recede, you lose vital support for the teeth, and they may become loose.

When teeth become loose without any injury, it indicates a serious gum infection called periodontal disease or periodontitis.  Chronic periodontal disease increases your risk for heart attacks, strokes, diabetes, and Alzheimer’s disease.  This is not something to ignore!

A Persistent White Coating

A fuzzy or sticky white coating that persists for several days, even with good oral hygiene, may indicate a fungal infection.  The fungus Candida albicans is an opportunistic fungus that will reproduce rapidly whenever it can.

Do not attempt to scrape or scratch away any white coating that does not rinse off with a vigorous warm salt water swishing.  Simply perform your normal oral hygiene routine and drink plenty of water to stay hydrated.  Then see your dentist or medical doctor for evaluation and prescription of an anti-fungal medication.

by Premier Dental Ohio

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Ten expert tips for how to keep your mouth healthy

eeping on top of your oral hygiene should be at the top of your agenda. Here are 10 ways to make sure your mouth stays healthy.

1. Pro Brushing

Brush your teeth twice daily, in the morning and evening (at least). Plaque takes 12 hours to deposit on the teeth surfaces and transform into bacteria, which can attack your enamel or harden into tartar. Top tip: try to hold your toothbrush pointing towards the gum line using circular motions.

2. Keep your mouth in check

Go to the dentist at least twice a year for a check-up. This will allow your dentist to notify you of problems such as decay and gum disease.

3. Go electric

Buy an electric toothbrush and use it for 2 minutes, it has been proven that it removes much more plaque and food debris than the manual one. Make sure you can use it at a low speed so it doesn't damage the gums. Top tip: a tooth brush head should be changed every three months.

4. Flaws in your flossing

Floss or use inter-proximal brushes in between teeth at least once daily as the food or bacteria get first deposited in between teeth and more likely to develop inter-proximal decays or gum inflammation. Top tip: wrap the floss around your index fingers, use a new piece of the floss for each tooth and floss against the tooth to avoid damaging the gums.

5. Improve your technique

Minimise the amount of toothpaste on the toothbrush: dry cleaning has been proven to be more effective than when using a lot of toothpaste as the mechanical effective movement of removing plaque is dramatically reduced when we feel the mouth fresh using a toothpaste .

6. Don´t Foget Your Tongue


Make sure you clean your tongue as well as many bacteria colonise its surface giving bad breath. Top tip: you can buy special tongue cleaners or simply use a spoon upside down.

7. Stop smoking

Smoking will not only stain your teeth but it also reduces the blood supply to the gums and causes/aggravates gum disease, it can also lead to oral cancer.

8. Can the fizzy drinks

Stay away from acid fizzy drinks as they will erode your enamel and make it more exposed to bacteria. Top tip: try water instead you can always add citrus fruit to the mix.

9. Bye, bye sugar

Reduce sugars in your diet, especially honey or spreadable chocolate or sticky sweets which will go in between teeth and very difficult to brush them off, sugar is the major culprit for tooth decay.

10. Healthy foods

Eat plenty of vegetables like carrots or celery or greens which will naturally brush your teeth and cleanse the surfaces.

by Dr Nina Bal DBS

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Seven Signs You Need to Make an Appointment With Your Dentist Fast

Have you been putting off making that dentist appointment for awhile? Maybe you’ve got a nagging suspicion that you’ve got a cavity, and don’t want to deal with it.

That’s not a good idea. Your tooth decay will only get worse, leading to a more painful root canal down the line.

You also might be experiencing symptoms, without even knowing it, that should land you right in that dentist’s chair straight away.

Want to make sure your teeth are as healthy as can be?

Read on to make sure you’re not avoiding dental issues (accidentally or otherwise) that should be taken care of now!

Set A Dentist Appointment For Bleeding Gums

This is probably a familiar scene to you: you’re feeling the self-love today, so after brushing your teeth, you decide to take a whack at flossing. You guiltily pick the plastic floss container and tear a piece off, knowing you don’t do it as often as you should.

As you start flossing in between your teeth, the floss comes back red with blood.

Should you be worried? Have you ever wondered why your gums bleed when you floss?

It may seem like it’s not a big deal, but bleeding gums can actually be a sign that you need to make a dentist appointment, pronto.

Remnants of the food you eat eventually decomposes into bacteria in your mouth. That bacteria can get stuck in between your teeth. It’s incredibly irritating to your gums, making them sensitive to pressure.

Flossing provides just enough pressure to bother those inflamed gums. If you don’t floss twice a day, or your gums bleed when you floss, you may be at risk for gingivitis. This can lead to periodontitis or tooth loss down the road, so it’s best to make that dentist appointment now.

Translucent Teeth

Take a look in the mirror, and flash those pearly whites. Do you notice that they’re a little translucent around the edges?

If so, you might be suffering from bruxism without even knowing it. Bruxism is the medical term for grinding your teeth or clenching your jaw. Frequently, this happens at night while you’re fast asleep.

That’s why it can take awhile to get diagnosed. If you don’t realize you’re doing it and don’t know what to look for, how could you ever know there’s a problem?

Translucent teeth are a result of grinding your enamel down from bruxism. If this sounds like you, you should see a dentist ASAP.

Bad Breath

Dealing with bad breath can be annoying and embarrassing. Do you brush regularly, but your breath still reeks? Does it seem like minty gum just does nothing for you?

There might be something more going on. Bad breath can be a sign of tooth decay, tooth infection, or gum disease.

If you’re growing more and more frustrated with chronic bad breath, head to a dentist. They may be able to find out what’s really going on, and help you find a long-term solution. No more gum!

Pain in the Jaw

If you’re experiencing pain in your jaw, especially when you wake up in the morning, you might need to see a dentist. Pain in your jaw can be a sign of temporomandibular joint disorder or TMJ. TMJ is easily treatable, though, if you seek medical attention at the first sign of symptoms.

Jaw pain can also mean that you’re grinding your teeth at night. It can be a sign of an abscessed tooth that will need to be removed. It can even be a sign of a misaligned bite.

All of these things are treatable! Don’t wait to take care of them.


Let’s face it: insecurity over your teeth can sometimes affect your mental health pretty drastically. It doesn’t have to be this way.

If you’re insecure about crooked teeth, there’s a solution. Try Invisalign to straighten them out. You don’t have to be an adult with braces!

You can also have your teeth professionally whitened by your dentist if they’re starting to yellow. It’s that, or give up coffee! And who can give up coffee?

Professional whitening is also safer than at-home whitening treatments. At-home treatments can sometimes mask dark spots that a dentist might need for a potential diagnosis. They can also cause tooth sensitivity that can be painful!

Plaque Buildup

You’ve probably heard that you should be going to the dentist twice a year for cleaning. You’ve also probably blown it off at least a couple of times.

The reality is that it’s as important as ever to get your bi-annual cleanings. Plaque and tartar buildup can lead to gum disease and tooth infection.

It’s also important to get checked up by your dentist at least this frequently to maintain your oral health. At your cleaning appointment, your dentist can check for cavities. They can also keep their eye out for early signs of disease to head it off before it becomes a problem.

Wisdom Teeth

If you’re a teenager or young adult and your wisdom teeth are growing in, make a dentist appointment to assess whether or not they’ll need to be pulled.

If you let them grow in without this advice, there might not be room in your mouth for all your new teeth. That can lead to an impacted wisdom tooth, which can lead to a really painful infection called pericoronitis.

If your wisdom teeth have already grown in, check them out in the mirror to see if your gums are beginning to grow over them. Sometimes, a gum flap will develop. This is the leading sign of pericoronitis.

If you see these signs and symptoms around your wisdom teeth, make a dentist appointment soon to avoid infection!

by Dee Kay Dental

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Can You Get Toothache With Implants?

Epidemiological studies estimate that about 178 million people in the United States are missing at least one tooth. A missing tooth can alter the look of a person’s smile. Whether the problem is due to tooth decay, gum disease, trauma, or genetics, it can eventually affect your teeth’s alignment. Without replacement, missing teeth can cause a host of issues down the road. Are you thinking of getting a dental implant? If you’re worried that you’ll get a toothache with implants, read on to learn more about this popular method of tooth replacement.

What Are Dental Implants?

Dental implants are surgical fixtures made of titanium cylinder screws. Your dental implant dentist places these into your jawbone below the gums. They are reliable and feel like a real tooth. It’s regarded as a permanent solution for those with a missing tooth or multiple teeth. Implants are one of the standards of care for prosthetic replacement of missing teeth. Having an implant fused to the jawbone is the closest thing to mimicking a natural tooth.

Will It Cause Tooth Pain?

Before the implant surgery, the area where an incision will be made will be numbed using an anesthetic. This means that you should not feel any discomfort during the surgical procedure itself. After the operation and as soon as the drug has worn off, it’s normal to experience some side effects. The area that your dental surgeon operated on may bleed slightly and feel tender. There may be some swelling and bruising too.

Every patient heals differently. Everyone also has their own pain threshold. The discomfort you will experience will depend on how complicated your dental implant surgery was. Placing only a single implant will not be as painful as having to affix multiple implants. Rest assured that your dental implant dentist will provide you a ballpark after your operation on how long you can expect to feel pain for. On average, the side effects should subside 10 days after the surgery. The discomfort should improve following the procedure, not worsen. So, if you notice that the swelling, toothache, bleeding, and other pains are getting worse after three days, you need to call your surgeon immediately.

Signs of Dental Implant Infection

As previously mentioned, implants work like natural teeth. This means that they, too, can become infected. If neglected, your implants will become diseased and eventually fail. Here are the common signs that you need to watch out for:


Icky taste.

Bad breath.

Difficulty chewing.

Loose dental implant.

Pus from the surgical site.

Throbbing pain from the area.

Dull ache or tenderness on palpation.

Red or puffy gums around the implant.

Bleeding when brushing around the implant.

Depending on the infection level, your dental implant dentist may prescribe antibiotics and special mouth rinses. They may also provide a combination of other treatment options. This way, they can get your dental implant back on a healthy track, preventing it from causing any systemic illness.

by Dr Sam Can

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How to Prevent Elderly Dental Problems

As you age, it’s likely that your teeth are going to require some extra care and attention! A lifetime of crunching, chewing and grinding is inevitably going to affect your smile, but there are certainly ways you can prevent damage and keep your teeth in great condition. Take a look at our tips that can help you maintain a healthy, youthful mouth.

1. Brush and clean in between your teeth twice a day

It might seem obvious, but brushing and flossing (or using interdental brushes) at least twice a day is extremely important if you want to maintain a good level of oral health. As well as preventing gum disease and tooth decay, it can also help you maintain that sparkling smile!

Receding gums are common in old age, so it’s best sticking to a soft-to-medium textured brush to prevent tooth sensitivity. If you have arthritis, you might struggle to brush your teeth properly—if this is the case, then you should definitely consider using an electric toothbrush to make things easier.

2. Keep your dentures and bridges clean

If you have dentures, partial dentures or bridges because of missing teeth, it is important to clean them just as often as you would clean your teeth! Unclean dentures can lead to the same issues that are caused by unclean teeth, as well as oral thrush and other mouth infections.

To keep them clean, the Oral Health Foundation recommends brushing them with a non-abrasive denture cleaner rather than toothpaste. You should also soak them in a denture-cleaning solution at least once a day (ideally overnight, unless you’re instructed to wear them during that time). This should remove bacteria, prevent tartar build-up and help you maintain a fresh smile!

3. Prevent dry mouth

When you get older, you’re more likely to be on some form of medication. Dry mouth is listed as a side-effect of hundreds of medicines, so this is certainly something to be aware of. The condition—also known as xerostomia—is caused by decreased levels of saliva, a substance which is essential in maintaining a healthy oral environment.

Because saliva helps to wash away food particles and neutralise acid, dry mouth puts suffers at risk of issues such as gum disease, tooth decay and even tooth loss. Ways of preventing dry mouth include chewing sugar-free gum to promote saliva production, using specially-formulated mouthwashes and taking regular sips of water throughout the day.

by GDC Liverpool

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Five Things And Foods To Avoid After Teeth Withening

Teeth whitening is a fast, safe and effective way of getting better-looking teeth. However, to ensure the best possible results, some precautions have to be taken. For example, there are certain foods that you should avoid after teeth whitening.

Immediately after teeth whitening, teeth are more prone to staining, for up to a good 24 hours. This is true for both in-clinic teeth whitening and at-home teeth whitening procedures. Not surprisingly, items that normally cause staining will be able to do their life’s work in that small, post-whitening window.

Here are some examples of things to avoid after teeth whitening.

Coffee and tea

Red wine

Dark sauces



When in doubt, avoid anything that would ruin a crisp shirt. Let’s dive in deeper and see why we should avoid the mentioned foods after teeth whitening.

1. Coffee and Tea

Coffee and tea are the staining fraternity’s most notorious duo. Avoid them at all costs during the first 24 hours after teeth whitening when the teeth are the most vulnerable towards stains, even if it means droopy eyelids at work. This is because coffee and tea contain tannins, an organic substance that can stain your teeth yellow.

There are no alternatives for coffee and tea, including white coffee, of course.

2. Red Wine

Red wine is the number one teeth stainer, especially if it is big, bold and tannic. Remember, big and bold also equals to big and bold stains. Overall, we should be avoiding red-coloured foods and drinks altogether.

Such is the potency, that we even have to avoid fruits commonly used to describe red wines. Think blackberries, currants, etc. These dark berries have powerful pigments that can quickly darken teeth.

Alternatives to Red Wine: enjoy a white wine instead. White wine is comparatively less invasive when it comes to staining the teeth.

3. Dark Sauces

This rather broad category encompasses anything from the blacker-than-black Asian black sauce, to a comparatively benign ragu bolognese, and everything in between.

Curries deserve an honourable mention here, as they often contain ingredients like turmeric, which readily imparts colour and might stain the teeth after teeth whitening.

Alternatives to Dark Sauces/Curries: Chow down on a safe meal like white bee hoon or pasta alfredo.

4. Chocolate

Chocolate bars, powder, ice cream, and fountains? Just say no. Happiness can wait. You should avoid dark foods like chocolate after whitening your teeth. Don’t worry, you’ll be able to enjoy your favourite dessert again after a few days of abstaining.

There are no alternatives for chocolate. But if you’re craving a sweet snack after teeth whitening, consider cheesecake or vanilla ice cream instead.

5. Tobacco

Smoking is generally bad for your oral health, and it can ruin a newly-whitened smile. This includes cigarettes and all other forms of tobacco. Nicotine and tar from tobacco products easily mix with saliva and darken the teeth.

The alternatives for smoking after teeth whitening are vaping and e-cigarettes can be less staining for your teeth (but they are still potentially bad for your health).

Enjoy your pearly-whites for as long as possible by avoiding these 5 foods, especially in the first few days. Should any of these be consumed/used inadvertently, rinse out immediately, have a good brush, and say a little prayer.

by Dental Studio

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Bad Breath From Stomach Problems? What It Means And How To Fix It

When it comes to bad breath, obvious offenders, like strong-smelling foods or poor oral hygiene, are often top-of-mind. However, bad breath doesn't always come straight from your mouth — it could stem from a problem in your stomach. Bad breath from stomach issues can be perplexing because it's harder to identify, isolate, and treat. Still, understanding what causes bad breath from the stomach can help you decide if your breath is from a garlicky lunch or something more serious.

Bad Breath Causes

Your digestive tract can have more to do with your oral health than you think. The first step in dealing with bad breath, or halitosis, that seems to come from the stomach is determining its cause. If you know that you're sensitive to certain foods, your bad breath could be related to stomach acid. Or, if you notice that your breath smells like ammonia, it could be the result of a kidney infection or chronic disease. Here are some common causes of bad breath from stomach issues.

GERD or reflux — Bad breath can be a sign of Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease or GERD. If you tend to have heartburn or reflux, your bad breath could be related to the excess acid produced by your digestive tract. Those acids can have a sour odor, affecting your breath.

Kidney disease — The U.S. National Library of Medicine noted that bad breath that smells fishy or has a heavy ammonia-like smell can sometimes be a sign of chronic kidney disease.

Ulcers — A link has been found between bad breath and H. pylori bacteria. This bacteria is a common cause of peptic ulcers, as well as dyspepsia. However, additional research needs to be performed to determine precisely how H. pylori contribute to bad breath.

Bowel obstruction — One symptom of bowel obstruction is bad breath. This occurs because nothing can move down your intestinal tract. Everything inside the digestive tract ferments and produces a bad odor that escapes through the mouth.

Talk to your doctor about how to cure bad breath coming from the stomach. Make sure to discuss all of your symptoms, not just the bad breath, to develop a treatment plan.

Bad Breath Remedies

The main treatment for bad breath from the stomach is treating the root cause. In addition to that, you can take some daily steps to help freshen your breath.

Avoid your triggers. Take note of triggers like spicy food, dairy, stress, or other things that seem to make your bad breath worse so you can steer clear of them.

Chew gum. Try chewing sugar-free gum to stimulate saliva production and help banish bad breath.

Keep a healthy mouth. Brush twice a day, clean in between your teeth with interdental brushes, floss, or water flossers daily, and use a mouthwash to ensure you don't have food particles or bacteria contributing to bad breath.

Consider a probiotic. Better breath could start with a healthier gut, so talk to your doctor about taking a probiotic or adding a daily cup of yogurt to your health routine.

It's not always simple to identify the cause of bad breath, and sometimes the problem is more complicated than forgetting to brush. Keep track of solutions you've tried and other symptoms you're experiencing so you can talk with your doctor to find the underlying cause. That way, you can address the issue head-on and work toward fresher breath!

by Colgate

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How to Care For Your Teeth While You Sleep

Wearing a dental night guard is one way to protect your teeth while you sleep. Truth be told, some people aren’t even aware of what caring for your teeth while you snooze can do for your oral health. Sure, it’s 8 hours of inactivity, and the body is just resting. But did you know that while we sleep, our mouths produce twice as much bacteria compared to when we’re awake? It’s true!Plaque builds up on teeth, on the back of the tongue, and along the gum line more during the twilight hours. Our salivary flow rate is also extremely low during the wee hours of the morning, which may make our teeth susceptible to damage by bacteria. This is also why we tend to have bad breath in the morning.Having knowledge about what happens with our mouths during the night actually gives us an advantage because we can take precautionary measures in order for us to properly take care of our teeth before we hit the sheets, so read on to find out more!

Brush before going to bed

Just like your morning oral routine, brushing your teeth should still be on the top of the list before you go to sleep. Brushing helps protect your teeth against plaque buildup, tooth decay, and gum disease. The ideal way to clean your teeth is to gently brush back and forth in short strokes. Remember to brush both the inner and outer surfaces. Brushing immediately before bed minimizes the growth of bacteria during rest. Remember not to eat or drink anything between brushing your teeth and going to bed, to get the full benefit.

Don’t skip the floss!

Flossing is a great way to remove all the tiny food particles that regular brushing isn’t able to remove. If debris stays on the teeth, bacteria will increase throughout the night and feed off it while you’re sleeping. Flossing is also recommended for those who are prone to gum disease or tartar buildup.

Rinse with mouthwash

More than just giving you fresh breath, mouthwashes contain ingredients that help strengthen teeth. They rid your teeth of plaque and protect it from cavities and gingivitis. Make sure to consult with your dentist on what the right kind of mouthwash to use. Some over-the-counter cosmetic rinses are only designed to mask bad breath and not care for your teeth’s overall health. The presence of mouthwash in your mouth during sleep can slow the growth of bacteria and even alleviate morning breath!

Prevent teeth grinding with a dental night guard

Teeth grinding is not something you can fully control, but there are ways to overcome it. One is through wearing a kind of mouth guard called a dental night guard, that you can wear during sleep to protect your teeth from the effects of grinding. Without a dental night guard, your teeth are more susceptible to worn tooth enamel, increased sensitivity, and even torn cheek tissues.

Talk to a trusted dentist

More than just maintaining a good oral health routine, your dentist can help you keep your teeth clean and your gums healthy. Preventive care and maintenance are important things to keep in mind most especially when you want to achieve a healthy set of teeth.

by Naenae Dental Clinic

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Why Is Tooth Enamel Important?

Your tooth enamel is the most mineralized and hardest substance in the body. It protects the teeth from the extreme pressure of chewing and the corrosive acids of the bacteria in the mouth. The enamel on the teeth is also the body's first defense against one of the most common dental diseases: tooth decay.

Each tooth in the mouth has enamel which mostly consists of the mineral hydroxyapatite. It is the most visible part of the teeth and the color tends to vary from a greyish white to a light yellow color. The enamel of your teeth is semi-translucent, so it is partially responsible for the color of the teeth.

The importance of tooth enamel

Tooth enamel plays a very important role when it comes to keeping tooth decay at bay. That is one of the reasons why it is so important that people do everything possible to prevent the enamel from eroding. The enamel serves as a barrier that protects the inner layers of a person's teeth, known as dentin, from the acids and other debris in the mouth. The enamel of the teeth also protects the dentin from the temperatures of the beverages and foods one consumes.

When the enamel weakens, the body is not capable of making a new one to replace it. Tooth enamel does not contain living cells, so it is not possible to regenerate it the same way the body regenerates damaged bone tissue.

Protecting tooth enamel

One of the best ways to protect the enamel of the teeth is by practicing good oral hygiene. This minimizes the exposure the teeth have to corrosive acids that can damage the enamel. Avoiding foods and beverages that damage the enamel is just as important. Sugary substances are particularly bad for teeth due to the acidity of sugar. There are lots of acidic fruits like oranges, lemons and strawberries that can also damage the teeth enamel.

When traces of these foods and beverages stick to the teeth, the bacteria in the mouth convert them into lactic acid, which can cause serious damage to teeth enamel. Avoiding these foods as much as possible to keep the enamel healthy. If someone must have some of these treats, then he or she needs to rinse the mouth with water or milk afterward.

Sugary and acidic foods and beverages are not the only things to avoid eating. Biting on hard things can be even more damaging to the teeth. Try not to chew on ice cubes, hard candy or fingernails to keep the enamel healthy. If it is essential to have some hard candy, suck on it until it dissolves instead of trying to chew it. Habits like grinding teeth can also wreck the enamel. Wearing a mouthguard from a dentist can help to prevent teeth grinding, known as bruxism.

Take proper care of your teeth

Taking proper care of your teeth will help to re-mineralize and strengthen the enamel. Brush twice a day with a fluoride-infused toothpaste, floss daily, and follow up with a quality mouthwash.

by Oak Tree Dental

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How Long Does a Dental Cleaning Generally Take?

Taking care of our teeth is important and can help avoid problems or unnecessary visits to the dentist’s office later in life. We recommend patients visit our dentist in Burlington for their cleaning and exam at least twice a year. These appointments are crucial and can help maintain your oral health and detect issues before they become serious. Bacteria and plaque build-up over time and your toothbrush at home can only remove so much. Dental cleanings are easy and the typical dental cleaning and exam only take approximately 30-45 minutes. This depends on the condition of your teeth and if any problems are identified.

At Beacon Hill Dental Centre prevention is extremely important. We help our patients review their oral hygiene routine at home and recommend changes to help keep their teeth and gums healthy. Many patients avoid visiting the dentist due to anxiety or fear. At Beacon Hill Dental Centre we create a calm and relaxing experience and can help you get the dental care you need. Our doctors have years of experience and love to help patients achieve the perfect smile.

What Can I Expect During My Appointment?

When you visit our office, we create a calm and welcoming environment. Our treatment rooms are updated with the latest technology and equipment. During the visit, we thoroughly clean each patient’s teeth using special dental tools to remove any plaque or tarter. Our team will examine the condition of both your teeth and gums to ensure everything looks healthy. We take x-rays and create a customized treatment plan for each patient. Our team will perform an oral cancer screening by checking your mouth, throat, neck, and tongue for any areas of concern. Our doctor will meet with each patient to discuss any areas of concern and follow-up visits.

Why Are Dental Cleanings and Exams Important?

Getting comfortable visiting the dentist and attending your regular cleaning and exam appointments can help set the stage for the future. Dental exams allow our doctors to get in front of any issues early on, and this can help prevent serious issues from developing in the future. During your exam, we can detect broken fillings, cavities, or other oral concerns. Our team can remove plaque and tartar that brushing at home cannot reach. We recommend patients brush and floss daily at home to help keep their teeth and gums looking and feeling great. If you ever notice any pain or discomfort, we encourage you to contact our office right away, and we will ensure you are seen as soon as possible.

Are You Due for Your Regular Dental Cleaning and Exam?

If you are ready to schedule your dental cleaning and exam, we encourage you to contact us. Let our team help you care for your teeth and keep your smile looking its best. We provide exceptional service and quality dental care you can trust.

by Beacon Hill Dental Centre

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How to treat a toothache at home

A toothache is a pain in and around the teeth and jaws. Tooth decay, an infection, loose or broken fillings, or receding gums can cause it.

If the pain lasts for more than 1 or 2 days, it is best to see a dentist immediately to have it treated.

Until then, the following simple remedies made from ingredients usually available at home may provide temporary relief from the discomfort.

1. Cold compress or ice pack

A cold compress or an ice pack can help ease dental pain, especially if a toothache is due to injury or swollen gums.

A person can try holding the ice pack or a bag of frozen peas, for example, against the outside of the cheek above the painful tooth for a few minutes at a time.

The application of a cold treatment constricts the blood vessels, slowing the flow of blood to the affected area. This helps numb the pain and reduce swelling and inflammation.

2. Saltwater mouthwash

Rinsing the mouth with warm salt water helps to loosen debris lodged in cavities or between teeth. It may also reduce swellingTrusted Source, boost healing, and relieve a sore throat.

A saltwater rinse can be made by dissolving 1 teaspoon of salt in a glass of warm water and swish around in the mouth for about 30 seconds before spitting out. This process can be repeated as often as needed.

3. Painkillers

Over-the-counter medication, such as acetaminophen and ibuprofen, can provide temporary pain relief for a toothache.

Aspirin should not be given to children under 16 years old.

4. Garlic

Garlic has been widely used for medicinal purposes throughout history. It contains a compound called allicin, which accounts for its powerful antibacterial propertiesTrusted Source.

A fresh clove of garlic should first be crushed and then mixed with a little salt, and the mixture applied to the affected tooth.

5. Peppermint tea

Like cloves, peppermint has numbing properties that can soothe a toothache. Menthol, which gives peppermint its minty flavor and smell, is also known to be antibacterial.

One teaspoon of dried peppermint leaves can be put in a cup of boiling water and steeped for 20 minutes. After allowing to cool, it can be swished around in the mouth then spat out or swallowed.

A slightly warm, wet tea bag can also be used and held against the tooth for several minutes until the pain lessens.

A few drops of peppermint oil on a cotton ball can also be placed against the affected tooth as a temporary remedy.

6. Thyme

Thyme is known for its medicinal uses and is an effective remedy for chest infections, such as bronchitis or whooping cough. Thymol, the main component of the essential oil, has antiseptic and antifungal properties.

One drop of thyme essential oil can be added to a glass of water to make a mouthwash.

Another method is to sprinkle a few drops of thyme essential oil and water onto a cotton ball. After adding the water, press it against the painful tooth.

7. Aloe vera

Aloe vera gel, which can be found within the succulent plant’s leaves, has long been used to heal burns and minor cuts. Some people now use the gel to clean and soothe gums.

Studies have shownTrusted Source that aloe vera has natural antibacterial qualities and can destroy germs that cause tooth decay.

The gel should be applied to the painful area of the mouth and gently massaged.

8. Hydrogen peroxide rinse

Rinsing with a hydrogen peroxide solution is an effective antibacterial mouthwashTrusted Source, especially if a toothache is caused by an infection.

Hydrogen peroxide is dangerous if swallowed so great care must be taken when rinsing.

It should be mixed in equal parts of 3 percent hydrogen peroxide and water and swished in the mouth for about 30 seconds. After spitting it out, the mouth should be rinsed several times with plain water.

A hydrogen peroxide rinse must never be swallowed, and this remedy is not recommended for children.

9. Cloves

Cloves are a spice native to the Maluku Islands in Indonesia. They contain eugenol, a chemical compound that acts as a natural anesthetic.

Cloves also have anti-inflammatory and antibacterial propertiesTrusted Source, which can help fight tooth and gum infections.

A person can soak a small cotton ball with clove oil and apply it to the area affected by the painful tooth.

Dried whole cloves can also be used. Gently chew a whole clove to release its oil and hold in place against the affected tooth for up to 30 minutes.

When to see a dentist

These home remedies are meant to provide temporary relief only. It is important to seek immediate treatment from a dentist once a toothache lasts for more than a day or two.

If dental pain is not treated straight away, it might lead to more serious problems, such as gum disease or a dental abscess. An abscess is caused when bacteria infect the innermost part of the tooth called a dental pulp.


The best way to prevent a toothache or dental abscesses is by keeping teeth and gums as healthy as possible. This can be done with the following steps:

brushing teeth with a fluoride toothpaste twice a day, for at least 2 minutes

cutting down on sugary food and drinks

flossing or using an interdental brush regularly to clean between the teeth and under the gum line

not smoking, as it can make dental problems worse

having regular dental checkups

If someone has a toothache that lasts longer than a couple of days, they should see their dentist for advice and treatment.

by Medical News Today

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Preventing and Treating Exposed Dentine

To understand why exposed dentine is a challenge to be solved, here's a mini-lesson on teeth:

Enamel is the outer layer of each tooth. It's sort of a superhero since enamel is the hardest substance in our entire bodies and helps protect us from tooth sensitivity. Yay for enamel!

Directly beneath enamel is the dentine layer. Though considerably softer than enamel, it supports your tooth's structure. (Hurray, dentine!) Dentine contains thousands of microscopic tubules with nerve endings connecting directly to the inner pulp of the tooth.

Dental pulp contains the nerve fibre that interprets everything as pain. Yikes!

If your enamel wears away, exposing your dentine, then cold, heat, pressure, or almost anything can cause sensitivity. To learn how to prevent exposed dentine, first be aware of the causes. If you already have exposed dentine, know what treatments are at the ready.

Dentine Exposure: Causes and Prevention

The best way to avoid sensitivity due to dentine exposure is to prevent practices or conditions leading to enamel erosion. Luckily, for the most common causes of dentine exposure, there's a preventive measure.


Cause of Exposure: Teeth grinding, also known as bruxism, can result from stress, malocclusion (a misaligned bite), or certain diseases affecting your muscles. Over time, grinding can lead to thinning enamel on your teeth's biting surfaces. Eventually, this thinning will cause the enamel to wear away, leaving the dentine exposed.

Prevention: Your doctor and dentist can advise you on ways to prevent grinding, which can include dental work, orthodontic treatment, stress management, medication, or sleep disorder treatments.

However, to prevent your enamel from thinning, your dentist can make a splint or an acrylic mouthguard to reduce tooth-to-tooth wear while you sleep. While they won't stop the grinding, these items will protect your teeth from wearing down.

Gum Recession

Cause of Exposure: When plaque accumulates along your gingival margin, the edge of the gum that meets your teeth, the result can be gum recession (and disease). When your gums recede below your enamel layer into the root, your cementum layer will be exposed. This can lead to dentine exposure.

Prevention: This is where your oral health routine comes into play:

Gently brush twice daily with fluoride toothpaste.

Floss once a day.

Schedule twice-annual dental check-ups at which your dental professional examines your gums for any recession.

Yep, it's that easy!

Overzealous Brushing

Cause of Exposure: Using a hard toothbrush and repeatedly scrubbing, especially with abrasive toothpaste, can also scrape off your enamel and expose dentine. Overbrushing is most troublesome along the gumline, where the enamel is thinnest.

Prevention: If you're a vigorous brusher, switch to a soft-bristled brush or an electric toothbrush that alerts you when you brush too hard. Also, use non-abrasive toothpaste.

And don't forget to floss! Removing bacteria in-between your teeth makes them feel cleaner and helps prevent cavities and gum inflammation. That, in turn, reduces your risk of gum recession and sensitivity.

Heartburn/Gastro-oesophageal Reflux Disease (GORD)

Cause of Exposure: When gastric reflux occurs, your stomach acid enters your mouth, leading to enamel erosion and tooth decay.

Prevention: By managing GORD, you can help prevent dentine exposure. Consult your doctor, who might recommend lifestyle changes, a prescription or over-the-counter medicine, or surgery.

Treating Exposed Dentine

Once dentine exposure occurs, you'll experience sensitivity ranging from mild yet annoying sensations to brief but intense shooting pains. Exposed dentine treatments your dentist might suggest include those listed by the UK Forum on dentine hypersensitivity, as reported by Dental Nursing:

Toothpaste for sensitive teeth: Ask your dentist what toothpaste best blocks tooth nerve sensitivity. You might have to brush over several days before you notice a sensitivity reduction.

Fluoride varnish: Your dental professional will administer this varnish, which has a dual action: it strengthens your tooth enamel and reduces teeth sensitivity.

Restorative correction such as crowns or bonding: Your dentist might perform one of these procedures if your sensitivity results from decay or a dental imperfection.

Surgical gum graft: If you lose gum tissue at the root level, a graft can reduce sensitivity while protecting the root.


Learning about the layers of your teeth helps you understand what causes tooth sensitivity – or hypersensitivity – due to dentine exposure. And that's the first step to prevention. It's good to know treatments exist for dentine exposure, but it's better if you can keep your enamel healthy. After all, that's the layer exposing your smile.

by Colgate

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What Does a Great Daily Oral Health Routine Look Like?

It is not unusual to read or talk about the importance of proper oral hygiene, but not everyone inherently knows what that entails. Even adults who have been visiting their local dentist for years might not fully understand what tasks should be included in their everyday schedule. For ideal dental hygiene, this is what your daily oral health routine should look like


The backbone of a great dental health routine is brushing your teeth twice each day. You should always use a toothbrush that can easily reach the teeth in the back of your mouth, and it should be soft-bristled. Brush over all of the surfaces of your teeth, and be sure to use a toothpaste that contains fluoride.


Flossing on a regular basisis one of the habits that often gets overlooked by adults. Once a day, use at least 1 foot, or 12 inches, of dental floss. Hold one end of the floss in each hand and use it carefully along the gumline between every single tooth in your mouth. In some cases, it can be hard to reach certain teeth with dental floss. However, that’s no excuse to skip an area. A dental pick of some kind should be used instead.


Scraping your tongue is a key way to remove bacteria from your tongue. If you suffer from halitosis, or bad breath, this simple act can make a serious difference. Many toothbrushes have a tongue scraper attached to the back of the brush for your convenience or your can purchase a seperate tongue scraper like these from Healthy Top 10s.


Mouthwash is an effective way of reducing plaque in your mouth, and it has been proven to reduce gum disease in many adults. Rinse with mouthwash once a day for up to 90 seconds, but be sure not to swallow the liquid.


Believe it or not, the foods that you eat can also play a significant role in your dental hygiene. Either through diet or supplements, make sure that you are taking in key vitamins like calcium on a daily basis.

Along with visiting a local dentist in your area regularly, maintaining a daily routine is key for great dental health. Brushing twice daily, flossing, using mouthwash, eating a varied diet and scraping your tongue should all be used in conjunction for better oral health.

by Dr Linhart

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Signs Of Brushing Too Hard - What To Look For

Many people believe that by brushing their teeth hard, they are removing more plaque and food debris. However, this commonly made mistake can cause tooth damage and sensitivity.

Dentists recommend brushing twice a day, in the morning after breakfast and in the evening before bed. Two minutes is the recommended amount of time per brushing session, although millions of Americans fall short on time, which can leave behind plaque and food on the teeth.

Without proper brushing technique, you are more susceptible to tooth decay and gum disease because of harmful oral bacteria that are responsible for eating away at enamel and gingival tissue.

If you’re up-to-date with your dental visits and you brush and floss regularly, you simply need to know, are you brushing correctly?

Brushing incorrectly is common for many reasons. The most common reason is people are unaware of the correct brushing technique or they fall short on the two minutes of daily recommended brushing. In fact, the average amount of time people brush for is only 45 seconds!

If you experience signs like pain from certain foods or sensitivity when you’re smiling or catch some cold air, you may be brushing too hard.

Signs you’re brushing too hard

There are numerous signs that you may be using your toothbrush a bit too rigorously. Sometimes there are clinical symptoms like sensitivity, and other signs may require a visual examination by a dentist.

Receding gums: When you brush too hard at the gumline, you may be brushing away your gum tissue to pull away from the tooth, revealing the root and subgingival tooth structure. This can lead to sensitivity, and over the long-term can even lead to gum disease.

Severe toothbrush wear: If you notice your toothbrush looks like it came out of your dog’s mouth, there is a good chance you’re brushing too hard. A toothbrush should ideally be changed every three months. If your bristles are worn away and misshapen, it may mean you’re putting too much pressure when brushing.

Tooth sensitivity: Brushing too hard can wear away enamel and reveal inner layers of the tooth like the dentin layer. Dentin has nerves in it, and when exposed to extreme temperature changes can be painful.

Dull teeth appearance: You may notice that your teeth don’t appear shiny and bright, and there is more of a darker, yellow hue. This can indicate that the darker dentin layer is showing through, and there is enamel wear from brushing too hard.

Tooth decay: Brushing too hard can wear away protective enamel and leave teeth more prone to developing cavities. Moon-shaped cavities are often seen at the gum line or on the root surface of people who brush too hard.

Brushing too hard is very harmful

Gum tissue should be looked at like gold because once you lose any gum tissue, you can’t get it back. While you cannot replace enamel tooth structure, a dental filling can help restore teeth from decay. Gum tissue that is worn away is not as easily replaceable as you would require a gum graft and surgery.

Overbrushing can leave you with extremely sensitive teeth, making it uncomfortable to eat or drink without pain.

You may not be able to whiten your teeth with bleaching gel because it would cause too much pain and sensitivity if you have enamel wear from brushing.

Since overbrushing can leave you with irreversible results, it is important to look at ways to prevent this habit. If you have already done some damage, maintenance is key.

Simple ways to prevent brushing too hard

There are some easy ways you can still maintain great oral health without damaging your teeth. Some great tips to keep your teeth healthy include:

Proper brushing technique: Proper brushing is one of the first things you need to learn so that you can adequately keep your teeth clean, but also safe. Brush at a 45-degree angle in tiny circles on each tooth surface. The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends brushing for a minimum of two minutes to remove all surface debris.

Use the right bristle toothbrush: Brushing with a medium or hard bristle brush is harmful to your teeth and gums because it is extremely abrasive. Instead, opt for a toothbrush with soft or extra-soft bristles.

Use an electric toothbrush with a built-in sensor: A manual brush with soft bristles or an electric toothbrush with a sensor that vibrates and alarms you if you brush too hard is a great way to reduce putting too much pressure on your teeth.

Monitor your brush: If you notice that your bristles are worn down and flat, it’s a sign you are brushing too hard. Keep an eye on your toothbrush wear and if you see it start to fray quickly, limit the pressure you’re using when brushing.

Use a non-abrasive toothpaste: Some toothpaste contain harsh, abrasive materials that can cause wear and tear on the teeth. Think of the very popular charcoal toothpaste commonly used for whitening, and it can cause enamel wear over time. Use a paste that is ADA approved and safe for your mouth.

Visit your dentist: Going for routine dental visits every six months is an important way to get a professional opinion on how your teeth look. Your dentist will monitor your teeth and gums to ensure they’re in top shape.

Treatment options for brushing too hard

Unfortunately, tooth structure and gum tissue do not grow back like hair or nails. But, if you have enamel wear or gum recession, you can speak with your dentist about treatment that can limit your symptoms.

Treatment often involves:

Dental fillings

Gum surgery

Silver diamine fluoride (SDF)

Scaling and root planing

Crowns and crown lengthening

Brushing your teeth seems like a simple task, and usually, it is! But, in the case you are brushing too hard, you may be doing more damage than good. The best thing you can do for your teeth is attending your dental appointments and discuss your brushing habits with your dentists and hygienist.

by Caldwell, Bills & Petrilli Dentistry

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Your Oral Health Needs As You Age

It’s essential to take good care of your teeth, especially as you grow old. One of the long-held misconceptions is the belief that losing one’s teeth is inevitable. This is far from the truth; if you properly take care of your teeth, they’ll last a lifetime. 

Some changes occur in your mouth as you age. The nerves in the teeth get smaller, thus making them less sensitive to cavities or other dental problems. And if you don’t go for regular dental checkups and examinations, this could lead to more severe dental diseases not diagnosed until a later stage. 

How Do You Keep Your Teeth Healthy as You Age?

Most people believe the misconception that tooth loss and gum disease are inevitable as they age. That’s not always true; your oral health as you age is your responsibility. Here are some tips to help you keep your teeth healthy. 

Floss and Brush Your Teeth Every Day

You should floss and brush your teeth at least twice a day. This will help remove plaque. Plaque is an invisible bacteria film that lives inside the mouth. As it feeds on sugar and carbohydrate components in your mouth, it produces an acidic substance that attacks your gums and erodes your teeth. Brushing and flossing your teeth goes a long way in preventing this plaque from building up and causing dental problems for you. 

Manage Dry Mouth

Older adults mostly experience dry mouth because of certain medications. The presence of saliva in the mouth helps to wash away food particles and bacteria. With less saliva in the mouth, you may be more vulnerable to more dental issues. This is why it’s important to manage your dry mouth by ensuring you drink enough water. If you experience unusual dry mouth, let our dentists know in your next dental appointment. 

Take Proper Care of Your Gums

You must understand that your teeth are part of an interconnected system – the gums. Hence taking proper care of your gums will help you maintain strong and healthy teeth. Book an appointment with our dentists when you have swollen or bleeding gums. The quicker we detect the gum disease, the sooner we’ll help you restore your oral health. Having healthy gums go a long way in supporting and holding your teeth in place, thus making you less susceptible to losing your teeth as you age. Even if you wear dentures, having healthy gums will firmly support your appliance, making you talk and eat with ease. 

Quit Smoking

If you’re a smoker, do your best to quit smoking. Smoking suppresses your immune system and deprives your body of the ability to heal itself. This, in turn, can make it hard for your body to fight against germs and bacteria, thus leading to tooth decay and gum disease. Moreover, if you’re addicted to tobacco, you stand a chance of getting throat/oral cancer. 

Schedule an Appointment With a Dentist Regularly

If you want to maintain positive oral health, book an appointment with our dentists at Westerville Dental Associates at least once every six months for oral examination and teeth cleaning. 

Why Do Teeth Shift With Age?

The mouth is made up of a biological system of bones that are in constant motion. As you age, your teeth, especially the front ones, tend to shift toward the front of your mouth. Teeth shifting causes crowding that can become an aesthetic problem. When your teeth become crowded, it becomes harder to clean and floss, thus making them more prone to plaque build-up. 

You might be wondering what causes these teeth to shift. As you age, the support structures (tissues, bones, muscles, and ligaments) that once kept the teeth in place become weak. Jawbones, like every other bone in the body, lose their minerals and become less dense over time. This bone weakness is the leading cause of tooth loss and shifting. 

What Can You Do to Straighten Your Teeth as You Age?

The American Association of Orthodontists recommends the use of fixed braces for straightening teeth. A temporary bracket is stuck to the teeth and joined with a flexible wire which exerts pressure on the teeth and moves it forward slowly. The wires are generally adjusted after every eight weeks. 

Another possible alternative used to straighten teeth is the use of clear aligners. For this treatment option, a dental scan is used to fashion an array of plastic aligners that can be worn day and night. The aligners are programmed to move your teeth about a quarter of a millimeter at a time for about 5 to 2 weeks.

What Are The Signs of Poor Oral Health as You Age?

Poor oral health and hygiene manifest itself in diverse ways. From toothaches to swelling or bleeding of gums, alterations to the tongue’s surface, and growth in the mouth, poor oral hygiene has different forms. Here are some of the most common signs of poor oral hygiene. 

Tooth Pain and Tooth Decay

If you experience unusual tooth pain, don’t take it for granted. There is a chance that the pain will persist even when you increase the frequency of your cleanings. Tooth pain is an early sign of tooth decay. Visit our dentists immediately.

Bleeding and Swollen Gums

Swelling, bleeding, or alterations in the color of your gum is a sign that something is wrong with your oral health. Only a professional dentist can fully tell you if it’s an early sign of gum disease. Treating your gums earlier can help prevent the occurrence of other severe gum diseases.

Other signs include:

Deteriorating gums

Growths within the mouth

Alterations to the tongue

Continuous care of your teeth and overall oral health helps to ensure you maintain a beautiful smile for years to come. Please don’t be afraid to contact your dentist if you have any questions.

by Westernville Dental Associates

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Tooth Decay Stages: Five Stages And To Treat Each

Tooth decay is damage that occurs to your teeth, which can potentially result in cavities, dental abscesses, or even tooth loss. It’s caused by the activity of certain species of bacteria that can live in dental plaque.

The bacteria in plaque can convert the sugars present in your food into acids. If plaque is allowed to build up over time, these acids can begin to damage your teeth.

This is why good oral hygiene is a vital part of preventing tooth decay.

Tooth decay occurs in several stages. Below, we’ll explore each of these stages, discuss how tooth decay is treated, and give you some tips on how to prevent it from happening.


Stages of tooth decay

Dental plaque is important to the tooth decay process. Plaque is a colorless, sticky film that covers the surfaces of your teeth. It’s made up of bacteria, food particles, and saliva.

If your teeth aren’t cleaned regularly, plaque can begin to build up. It can also harden over time, forming something called tartar. The presence of tartar can help to further protect bacteria, making them more difficult to remove.

Generally speaking, there are five stages of tooth decay. Let’s examine them in more detail below.

Stage 1: Initial demineralization

The outer layer of your teeth is composed of a type of tissue called enamel. Enamel is the hardest tissueTrusted Source in your body and is mostly made up of minerals.

However, as a tooth is exposed to acids produced by plaque bacteria, the enamel begins to lose these minerals.

When this occurs, you may see a white spot appear on one of your teeth. This area of mineral loss is an initial sign of tooth decay.

Stage 2: Enamel decay

If the process of tooth decay is allowed to continue, enamel will break down further. You may notice that a white spot on a tooth darkens to a brownish color.

As enamel is weakened, small holes in your teeth called cavities, or dental caries, can form. Cavities will need to be filled by your dentist.

Stage 3: Dentin decay

Dentin is the tissue that lies under the enamel. It’s softer than enamel, which makes it more sensitive to damage from acid. Because of this, tooth decay proceeds at a faster rate when it reaches the dentin.

Dentin also contains tubes that lead to the nerves of the tooth. Because of this, when dentin is affected by tooth decay, you may begin experiencing sensitivity. You may notice this particularly when having hot or cold foods or drinks.

Stage 4: Pulp damage

The pulp is the innermost layer of your tooth. It contains the nerves and blood vessels that help to keep the tooth healthy. The nerves present in the pulp also provide sensation to the tooth.

When damage to the pulp happens, it may become irritated and start to swell. Because the surrounding tissues in the tooth can’t expand to accommodate this swelling, pressure may be placed on the nerves. This can lead to pain.

Stage 5: Abscess

As tooth decay advances into the pulp, bacteria can invade and cause an infection. Increased inflammation in the tooth can lead to a pocket of pus forming at the bottom of your tooth, called an abscess.

Tooth abscesses can cause severe pain that may radiate into the jaw. Other symptoms that may be present include swelling of the gums, face or jaw, fever, and swollen lymph nodes in your neck.

A tooth abscess requires prompt treatment, as the infection can spread into the bones of your jaw as well as other areas of your head and neck. In some cases, treatment may involve removing the affected tooth.


The treatment that’s recommended for tooth decay can depend on its stage. Let’s take a look at the different treatment options based on the progression of tooth decay.

Initial demineralization

This earliest stage of tooth decay can actually be reversed before more permanent damage occurs. This can be achieved by treating the teeth with fluoride.

You can receive a fluoride treatment at your dentist’s office. It’s often applied to your teeth in the form of a gel or varnish. Fluoride works to strengthen enamel, making it more resistant to the acids produced by plaque bacteria.

Fluoride can also be found in some types of toothpastes and is often present in tap water. About 74 percentTrusted Source of Americans that get their tap water from a community water system receive fluorinated water.

Enamel decay

When tooth decay enters this stage, cavities are often present. Fillings are used to treat cavities.

When giving a filling, your dentist will first use a tool to clear away any areas of decay. They’ll then fill the hole with a material such as resin, ceramic, or dental amalgam. This material is typically the same color as your tooth.

Dentin decay

Because dentin is softer than the enamel, decay moves at a faster rate when it reaches this stage. If identified early, dentin decay may be treated with a filling. In more advanced cases, placement of a crown may be required.

A crown is a covering that covers the top portion of your tooth above the gums (also called the crown of the tooth). The decayed area is removed before the crown is placed. Some healthy tooth tissue may be removed as well to ensure that the crown fits well to your tooth.

Pulp damage

When tooth decay has reached the pulp, you’ll often need a root canal. In a root canal, the damaged pulp is removed. The tooth cavity is then cleaned and filled in. A crown is placed on the affected tooth.


If an abscess has formed in your tooth, your dentist will likely perform a root canal to remove the infection and seal the tooth. In severe cases, the affected tooth may need to be removed completely.

Antibiotics may also be prescribed to help treat an abscess. These are medications that kill bacteria.

by healthline

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Six Simple Ways to Heal Tooth Decay and Reverse Cavities

Like most people, when you discover you have a cavity or pain in your teeth, the first thing you do is make an appointment with your dentist as you think that fillings are the only way to fix cavities. However, what most people fail to realize is that tooth decay and cavities can be reversed and fillings aren’t the only option available.

This article will explain the basic principles behind how you can heal cavities naturally and prevent tooth decay.

1. Change your diet and reduce your sugar intake. Studies in the British Medical Journal suggest that a change in diet can actually reverse tooth decay. Easy adjustments can be made to your diet immediately like:

Consuming more calcium rich foods (i.e. kale, collards, broccoli rabe and dairy) which can help strengthen your bones and teeth.

Avoid drinking pop, juice and drinks with high carbonation as the sugars cause excessive plaque and tartar build up which may result in cavities.

2. If you want to protect your teeth from early decay or heal existing tooth decay, include the following steps in your oral care routine.

Brush your teeth at least twice a day ensuring you reach all the surfaces, crevices, pockets and corners.

Floss at least once daily. This helps remove any remaining food from underneath your gums and prevents bacteria from forming.

Use mouthwash; it has antibacterial properties and helps you get rid of any remaining bacteria in your mouth.

3. Add vitamins and supplements to your diet. Micronutrients are essential to bone health and keep inflammation under control to prevent or reverse cavities. Certain vitamins help produce saliva which helps to prevent bacteria from staying on your teeth and certain vitamins make your teeth a lot stronger. Foods that help promote salivation include bananas, Brussels sprouts, and peas. Vitamins you should consume include Vitamin B, D, magnesium and iron. If you’re not interested in taking supplements, eat whole grain foods and seafood (i.e. salmon, canned tuna and sardines are all great sources of vitamin D).

4. Eat foods with natural probiotics. Because bad bacteria associated with infection look for places to hide in the small areas between the teeth, consuming probiotics helps to offset the acidic pH. Foods rich in probiotics include kombucha, kefir and fermented foods like kimchi and sauerkraut. These foods stimulate the production of healthy bacteria in the mouth needed to prevent plaque buildup and dental decay.

5. Be aware of the pH values in the foods/drink you consume. Imbalanced pH levels can create an environment for bacteria to thrive. Drinks such as coffee create pH imbalances (like some citrus fruits and sugars), and act as the perfect environment for harbouring infectious oral bacteria. If you’re a daily coffee drinker and suffering from tooth decay, a great alternative to coffee is green tea as it contains a polyphenol (known as catechins) which acts as a powerful antioxidant and has several anti-inflammatory properties which hinder the growth of harmful bacteria and improves oral health.

6. Develop a new oral care regime. Have you heard of a technique called oil pulling? Oil pulling is believed to create a soap like cleansing on teeth with moisturizing and antiseptic capabilities. It consists of swishing an oil (i.e. sesame, sunflower or coconut oil) for about 10-20 minutes in the mouth to reduce plaque buildup. It’s important that you don’t swallow the oil and to brush your teeth afterwards. Oil pulling has been shown to reduce plaque and gingivitis in one month’s time.

Remember, if a cavity has already struck, a trip to the dentist may not be avoidable. However, you can limit the damage by following these simple steps and paying a little extra attention to your pearly whites.

by Edge water Dental

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Views: 28

Can a Simple Cavity turn into Gum Disease

Cavities happen all the time. They’re an extremely common problem that most everyone faces when they’re a child, teen, or adult. When you sit in the dentist’s chair and find out you have a cavity, it can put a damper on your day. Cavities are often minor inconveniences, and annoying toothaches and tooth sensitivity are often associated with cavities.

Cavities are simply no fun at all. Nonetheless, with quick treatment by your dentist and oral hygiene diligence, cavities don’t have to form into bigger problems. If left untreated, however, cavities can form into much bigger oral complications, such as tooth loss, broken teeth, and gum disease.

Don’t forget, your dentist also performs an oral cancer screening during your dental exam as well!

Cavity Formation and Risk Factors

Cavities form because of tooth decay – often due to excess bacteria and plaque in the mouth. Once the tooth begins to decay, a cavity forms over time and creates little holes in teeth. Sometimes, when a cavity forms, you can experience a toothache or sensitivity to hot and cold. Some people may not experience any pain or discomfort from a cavity and that’s why it is so important to see your dentist for regular checkups and cavity checks.  

Bacteria is a destructive force in the mouth. When bacteria are present, they begin breaking down enamel, causing a build-up of plaque and tartar, and irritate the gums. Everything in connected with your oral health and if bacteria begins affecting a tooth and causing a cavity, it could also be causing gum disease.

Here’s a deep dive into Gum Disease.

Gum Disease Causes and Treatment

Cavities are a tell-tale sign of excess bacteria in the mouth. This means that you probably need to up the amp on your oral hygiene routine. Maybe you need to spend more time brushing, add in more flossing, and so on. Talking with your dentist will help you pin-point what you can do to eliminate the risk of cavities and gum disease. When cavities are present and bacteria is left untreated in the mouth, your gums can begin to get inflamed, which is the basis of gum disease.

According to WebMD, gum disease begins with bacteria in the mouth and can lead to tooth loss because of the loss of gum tissue. Gum disease attacks the gums, making them recede and not hold on to your teeth as well as they should. Look for these signs and symptoms:

Bleeding gums

Swollen or sensitive gums

Loose teeth

Pockets between the gums

Receding gums

Bad breath

Catching gum disease early is key to recovery, much like cavities. Proper plaque and bacteria control are key to eliminating gum disease and cavity risk! So, talk with your dentist to see what works best for you, and remember that proper oral healthcare is the best defense against bacteria.

by GPS dental

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Sensitive Teeth After A Dental Cleaning?

Practicing great oral care not only involves brushing twice a day and flossing daily—it also means visiting your oral care provider for a professional cleaning every six months. While these visits usually are painless and quick, they can sometimes leave your teeth feeling sensitive, especially if you received a deep cleaning. Luckily, over time these sensations will fade and do not indicate anything serious. Here’s a look at why you have sensitive teeth after a cleaning and what you can do if this feeling lasts longer than expected.

Why Are My Teeth Sensitive After A Cleaning?

Teeth sensitivity happens when the dentin, which is the layer beneath your enamel, becomes exposed due to receding gums. Remember—your roots don’t have enamel to protect them, so anything that comes in contact with them may cause sensitivity, like dental tools. While several factors contribute to tooth sensitivity, dental cleanings are a known cause, as your dental care professional may probe your gums and use tools that contact-sensitive areas of your teeth.

Deep Cleaning

Not every dental visit will involve a deep cleaning, but your teeth may also feel sensitive afterward if you do receive this procedure. According to the University of Michigan Health Library, you may need a deep cleaning when your gums have started to pull away from the teeth and create pockets where plaque can get trapped. When your oral care provider performs this procedure, which is also known as scaling and root planing, they’ll remove tartar and rough bacteria that have calcified on your teeth in these pockets. According to the American Dental Association, scaling is when your oral care provider removes the plaque and tartar above and below the gumline using special tools. Planing is when they smooth out your teeth’s roots to help your gums reattach to your teeth. 

Before a deep-cleaning session, the gums may be inflamed and swollen or have deep pockets infected with bacteria. Both scaling and root planing help treat these problems, but this treatment can hurt your teeth after the cleaning due to natural discomfort and bleeding. The dentist may offer a local anesthetic if your deep cleaning is likely to be more irritating.

What Happens Next?

It’s normal to experience sensitivity after a deep cleaning, which can last up to a week. Soreness and pain may also linger for a few days as your gums may be swollen or bleed. Your oral care provider may prescribe an antibiotic or mouth rinse to manage any pain and fight any possible infections.

Caring for Deep-Cleaned Teeth

Taking good care of your teeth after a deep cleaning treatment helps your gums heal by reducing the common triggers of pain and sensitivity. Wait at least a day before flossing, and brush your teeth carefully with a soft-bristled toothbrush while your gums are still sore. Use toothpaste for sensitive teeth to help treat and prevent tooth sensitivity, and avoid eating foods or drinking liquids that set off your sensitivity. If your teeth are sensitive three or four weeks after treatment or you have other concerns, contact your dentist for a follow-up visit. He or she can check that your gums are healing well.

How to Avoid Teeth Sensitivity

One way to avoid teeth sensitivity after a deep cleaning is to look for ways to improve your current day-to-day oral care routine. In addition to brushing twice a day with a soft-bristle toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste and flossing daily, avoid aggressive or hard scrubbing when brushing. You should also try to avoid acidic foods and drinks, which can lead to enamel deterioration (though using a straw can help mitigate that risk, as well as drinking water after an acidic beverage). If you grind your teeth, your oral care professional can provide you with a mouthguard that can protect you from grinding down your teeth and causing sensitivity. 

While the sensation of feeling sensitivity in your teeth feels uncomfortable, it’s normal to feel it after a cleaning, and it’s usually temporary. But if your symptoms last longer than a few weeks, you should contact your oral care provider to talk about your concerns.

Remember—teeth cleanings (and deep cleanings) are easy & excellent ways to maintain great oral health and prevent cavities. Even though your teeth might be sensitive after a cleaning, don’t worry. It’s normal and temporary, and soon you’ll be on your way to a healthier smile.

by Colgate

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Is Sparkling Water Bad For Your Teeth?

We all have our favorite brands and flavors. It's crisp, refreshing, and zero calories. And that makes us feel good about our beverage choice. We're talking about sparkling water, of course! It's popularity right now is massively escalating, according to USA Today. But how does it affect your pearly whites? Is sparkling water bad for your teeth? We've got all the sparling water answers you need.

How Does Soda Affect Your Teeth?

If you asked your dentist for their thoughts on soda, they'd recommend avoiding it. Why? Two big reasons:

Sugar — soda has an abundance of it, leading to tooth decay and cavities

Acid — most sodas are highly acidic, contributing to tooth erosion

So now you know what not to drink. Some healthier alternatives to drink include water, milk, and you guessed it — unsweetened sparkling water.

What Are Sparkling Water's Effects on Your Teeth?

That fizzy refreshment in your sparkling water, it's caused by carbonation. And it's the carbonation that has some concerned. So is carbonated water bad for your teeth? A Journal of the American Dental Association study found that many popular sports drinks were "extremely erosive," while most sparkling carbonated waters ranked as "minimally erosive." So does minimally erosive equate to "bad"?

Sparkling water is much less erosive than other beverages. Which is good — so it's not bad for you. "For an average, healthy person, carbonated, sugar-free beverages are not going to be a main cavity-causing factor," according to the U.S. News & World Report article. However, it's not necessarily good for you. It's great to replace soda with sparkling water, but don't replace water with fluoride over its sparkling counterpart.

What Are Some Other Ways to Protect Your Teeth?

To battles against cavities and enamel erosion, there are a few things you can do.

Brush with specially formulated toothpaste to help strengthen tooth enamel, replenish natural calcium, and protect against tooth sensitivity

See your dentist regularly to detect signs of tooth decay early when it is easy to correct or reverse

Now you know the truth about sparkling water — it isn't bad for your teeth. You also understand what's needed to keep your teeth healthy while you enjoy something fizzy.

by Colgate

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Do you Brush Your Teeth Twice A Day and Still Need Fillings?

A build up of plaque in hard to reach areas may be your problem.

Tooth decay causing bacteria that accumulate in these areas produce acid, demineralising the tooth enamel. This is the first stage of tooth decay and without further action, may lead to a hole in your tooth. We recommend daily flossing along with brushing your teeth twice a day as an excellent preventative measure.

There are several characteristics of the oral environment that, when imbalanced, can lead to an increased risk of tooth decay. Saliva is your most important protective factor. Adequate production, consistency and buffering capacity of saliva is essential for the prevention of tooth decay.

Next time you visit your dentist you should ask to check your saliva’s characteristics. If you need to improve your saliva’s quality simple methods like chewing sugar-free gum are great ways to stimulate salivary flow and maintain the saliva’s pH.

A look into your daily diet to identify excessive intake of sugary or acidic foods and beverages is also important. Consuming a healthy diet is important to your oral health. Your dentist can provide you with further advice you on this.

If you are prone to tooth decay, regular dental visits are advised to detect and restore small problems before they become too large and treatment becomes complicated. The best treatment we can provide is prevention.

by Braddon Dental

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Five Steps to Brushing Teeth the Right Way

It almost never fails; you go to the dentist, and no matter how well you think you’re doing,  they tell you that you need to brush more or floss or use more mouthwash. 

Is there any way to brush your teeth so that your dentist will be satisfied? It turns out there is, and most experts recommend a few steps to brushing teeth. We’ll tell you more about them in the paragraphs below.

1. Use a Fluoride Toothpaste

Most dentists will recommend using a toothpaste that contains fluoride. Fluoride is useful because it works in tandem with saliva. Saliva protects your teeth by putting a layer of calcium and phosphate on top of your teeth, both of which are active ingredients in enamel.

Fluoride combines with these elements to strengthen the defense. It’s like taking armor and then wearing another suit of armor over it. For this reason, it’s one of the most important steps to brushing teeth.

You have to brush every day to keep it working, but it adds a layer of protection. One thing to note, you should never swallow fluoride. It’s not dangerous in small amounts, but almost everything is poisonous if you take in too much of it.

2. Brush in Circles

You may have heard before that you’re supposed to brush in circles, but why is that? The primary reason is to get rid of the plaque and its components.

Plaque is a substance known as a microbial film, which is a substance that provides a home for several different types of bacteria. Plaque is made up of four main ingredients: saliva, tiny bits of food, carbohydrates, and bacteria.

So how does this relate to brushing in little circles? It turns out that brushing in straight lines can lead to holes being worn into the enamel, which can trap food or other ingredients of plaque.

Brushing in circles pushes many of these ingredients away from your gums and off your teeth altogether. Keep in mind, you’ll need to angle the brush away from the gums to get the full effect.

3. Brush the Back of Your Teeth

It’s easy to forget, but you need to brush the back of your teeth as well. In this case, out of sight does not mean out of trouble. 

Try to brush the backs of your teeth the same way as the fronts, in circles and pushing away from the gums.

4. Brush Your Tongue

It’s a good idea to brush your tongue after you finish with your teeth. Some would also suggest brushing the sides and roof of your mouth. 

Not only can these areas also hold bacteria and other plaque ingredients, but brushing them might also freshen your breath.

5. Floss, Rinse and Clean Your Toothbrush

Not everybody flosses and not everybody rinses with mouthwash, but either one can do your teeth some good. One thing you should always do, however, is clean your toothbrush.

A dirty toothbrush can expose your mouth to even more germs, so it needs to be kept clean and dry. You can’t keep a toothbrush clean forever, though, so you should be replacing it about twice per year.

The Best Steps to Brushing Teeth

In the paragraphs above, we’ve listed five important steps to brushing teeth. Keep in mind that while brushing teeth isn’t that complex, a lot of the science behind it and dental health as a whole is. If you’re interested in this subject, we encourage you to do more research on your own.

One great place to start is on our website. We can give you advice about tooth sensitivity, what it is and how to treat it.

by Dupont Dental

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Three Unusual Ways Brushing Your Teeth Keeps You Healthy

We’ve all been told time and time again, since the time our first milk teeth were popping out, to brush our teeth twice a day. Dentists recommend brushing twice a day for at least two minutes for optimal dental health for good reason. Now apart from the obvious benefits of keeping your breath fresh, keeping harmful bacteria from building up and preventing gum infections, good oral hygiene can have positive health benefits for you beyond just your mouth.

Here are three unusual ways brushing your teeth can help you stay healthy!

It Can Prevent Heart Disease

Having good oral hygiene by regularly brushing your teeth keeps bacteria from building in your mouth. Should you for some reason wake up one morning and decide to stop brushing your teeth altogether, the bacteria that slowly begins to build up can travel down to your bloodstream and increase the likelihood of cholesterol build up in your arteries. This can lead to an increased chance of heart attacks.

It Can Help You Deliver a Healthier Baby

Yes, you read that right. Brushing your teeth can actually help your soon-to-be-born-baby! Gum disease can increase the chance of premature, low weight babies. The build-up of bacteria in your mouth not just puts your health at risk, it can risk your baby’s too. If that isn’t convincing enough, then might we mention that poor dental hygiene is also linked to delayed conception and impotence?

It Can Prevent Chances of Dementia

Studies have shown that the chances of developing dementia increase 30-40% in individuals who have poor gum health.

Want To Take Better Care of Your Teeth?

If you want to start paying more attention to your teeth, here are a few tips;

Brush your teeth every day for at least two minutes.

If you can, try to brush after meals.

Use a fluoride toothpaste

Don’t forget to brush your tongue to get rid of any extra bacteria and keep your breath fresh!

Floss every day; preferably, before bed.

But while taking the measures above may improve the overall quality of your health and dental hygiene, it is still strongly advisable to visit your dentist regularly or at least twice a year to get checkups and get a deeper cleaning done.

by Smile Esthetics

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Nine Tips to Boost Your Oral Hygiene Routine

There's more to a sparkling smile than just brushing and flossing. So for World Oral Health Day, we're getting to the root of dental care best practices with these to-dos that can help ensure your teeth are as healthy as can be.

Say "Ahhh!" It might reveal more than you think.

As you've likely heard, your oral hygiene can have a major impact on your overall health. Gum disease, for instance, has been linked to a variety of health issues, such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes, preterm labor and even Alzheimer's.

That's why it's so important to take care of your teeth. But simply brushing and flossing on schedule, and visiting your dentist on a regular basis, might not cut it.

But with these 9 simple steps, you can help improve your dental hygiene—and the rest of your health. And who wouldn't smile about that?

1. Wait Before You Brush

In the habit of starting your morning off with a glass of orange juice? You're going to want to hold off on brushing for a while afterwards.

Foods and drinks with a low pH—that is, acidic foods—temporarily soften the enamel of the teeth. If you immediately follow up with brushing, the action could remove some of the enamel, making your teeth more susceptible to decay over time, says Michael Lynch, D.M.D., Ph.D., Global Director of Oral Care and Fellow Global Scientific Engagement for Johnson & Johnson Consumer Inc.

So your best bet is to delay brushing after you’ve had citrus fruits and juices, tomatoes, soda and wine. One study found that people who waited 30 to 60 minutes to brush after drinking soda had less wear on their teeth than those who brushed sooner. 

2. Switch to a Soft-bristled Brush

You likely already know you should change your toothbrush every two to three months (or sooner if the bristles are frayed), but if you’re using a hard brush, consider replacing it now. Medium- and firm-bristled toothbrushes may leave your teeth feeling cleaner, but they can be very abrasive—and damaging over time.

“Most people would be perfectly fine with a soft-bristled brush,” Dr. Lynch says. And there’s no need to brush too vigorously, either. It’s not good for your teeth or gums. Instead he advises using a gentle amount of pressure; tilting the brush at a 45-degree angle against the gum line; and brushing in a short, circular motion. 

3. Start by Brushing in the Back

This good habit may mean that you do a better job cleaning those hard-to-reach spots—which is essential because all of those nooks and crannies in your molars make them more susceptible to gum disease and cavities.

Beginning your brushing routine in the rear (at least sometimes) is a good way to give the back of your mouth the attention it deserves. “Every time I brush my teeth, I start in the upper right side in the back," Dr. Lynch says. "And I always follow the same method, so I know I won't miss any spots." 

4. Add Mouthwash and Gum to Your


If you’re doing twice-a-day brushing and flossing, you may feel that’s good enough. But rinsing with an antimicrobial mouthwash, like Listerine® Antiseptic Mouthwash, afterwards will kill more oral bacteria, helping to fight plaque. After you brush and floss, swish vigorously for 30 seconds twice a day.

Another recommendation is to chew gum. Sugar-free gum can help reduce the amount of bacteria in your mouth, and it stimulates salivary flow, which bathes the teeth with calcium and phosphate ions that help replenish tooth enamel, says Dr. Lynch.

5. Snap a Video Selfie

It may feel silly, but filming your toothbrushing sessions could help improve your technique, according to research published in the Indian Journal of Dental Research.

After study participants recorded themselves brushing their teeth to establish a baseline, they were given demonstrations and pointers until they achieved the proper technique. Over a two-week period, they used their smartphones, propped on a stand, to record themselves while brushing.

At the end of the study, researchers found that though people brushed for the same amount of time as before, they did increase both the accuracy and number of brush strokes, improving their toothbrushing skills overall.

Dr. Lynch seconds the idea, noting that recording yourself brushing can help make you more aware of what you're doing, plus you’ll probably perform better knowing that you're in front of the camera. Afterwards, you can view the footage to see where you need to improve.

6. Don't Brush Too Often

The recommendation used to be to brush after every meal. Brushing too often can damage your gums and the enamel on your teeth, and because of that, twice a day is enough, advises Dr. Lynch.

What you can do after every meal and snack is rinse with plain water. "Do some vigorous swishing, forcing the liquid in between the teeth to disrupt and dislodge any food particles,” Dr. Lynch suggests. 

7. Don't Linger Over Sipping Sugary Drinks

While you should limit the amount of sugary drinks in your diet, if you are going to have a beverage like soda, sweet tea or coffee with sugar and cream, it’s better to have it all at once, rather than sipping it throughout the day.

"When you constantly expose your mouth to sugar, certain bacteria uses that sugar as a food source and metabolizes it into lactic acid," Dr. Lynch explains. "The lactic acid starts to dissolve the minerals in your teeth and that’s how cavities are formed."

8. Eat Teeth-whitening Foods

It's true: Some foods can actually help keep your pearly whites, well, white.

Raw, coarse, fibrous foods—such as celery, cucumbers, apples, pears, carrots and lettuce—help scrub tooth surfaces and remove some of the plaque that’s accumulated, which can make teeth appear yellow, Dr. Lynch explains.

Also, these crunchy foods require more chewing time, so they also stimulate saliva, which helps neutralize acids that can erode your teeth.

9. Wash Your Toothbrush Holder

When was the last time you gave your toothbrush container a good scrubbing?

It doesn’t just hold your brush—it also holds onto many of the germs that occupy your bathroom. A study by the National Sanitation Foundation found that toothbrush holders are the third germiest household item (your dish sponge and kitchen sink take the first and second spots).

So run it through the dishwasher, or wash it in hot, soapy water, then use a disinfecting wipe, once or twice a week, advises the National Sanitation Foundation.

by Tamekia Reece

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Why do some people have dental problems during the summer season?

Summer season is synonymous with warm weather, vacations, endless fun time for kids along with illnesses like heat stroke. Everyone aware of the impacts hot weather can have on our bodies. Do you know that the heatwave will hurt your teeth and gums? Apart from chickenpox, measles, sunburn, and other summer diseases, various annoying dental problems also arise during the summertime.

With little precautionary actions, you can overcome dental irregularities like summer-related seasonal toothache, teeth sensitivity, and so on.

In this article, our dental doctors and oral hygienists have described how the sunny season causes teeth problems.

1) Dehydration

Dehydration often occurs in summers because of the increased body temperature due to heat. Hydrating yourself with fluid consumption is the best way to balance the depletion of water in your body and its side effects like dizziness, dry skin, fever, etc.

Such chronic dehydration reflects in your oral health also with many devastating effects. The reduced moistness in the body affects the salivary glands which in turn, lessens the salivary flow. Low salivation levels will make your teeth, gums dried out to make the oral tissues a breeding ground for bacteria to thrive and tend to various dental diseases.

2) Acids present in soft drinks

Many people prefer soft drinks like soda, fruit juices, sparkling water for hydration. Despite reducing the body heat and helps in moisturizing ourselves, these fluids contain excessive sugary and acidic components that are detrimental to teeth. This is because the acids and sugars in foods we take feed bacteria to corrode the teeth.

In simply, if you take carbonated drinks for hydration, it means you are providing a way for microbes to breed in your mouth. It will eventually lead to dental illnesses like cavities, toothache, etc.

3) Heat

Your tooth will react to extreme heat temperature if it has underlying problems. For instance, the bacteria present in a decayed tooth take advantage of the warm weather and is followed by chronic inflammations in tissues around the tooth. It will trigger a severe toothache.

To be precise, the hot weather activates the untreated infections in a tooth and increases the pain in the tooth to a greater extent.

4) Increased risk of Micro injuries in teeth

The micro injuries that happen while playing or doing some physical activities will become worsen with the warm weather.

As it is vacation time, kids are interested in playing. Whether it is indoor or outdoor, they might fall and injure themselves. When they get micro injuries in teeth like chips, cracks over the teeth surface, it will not cause serious aftereffects in most cases.

In contrast, the repeated micro injuries over the teeth surfaces accompanied by hot temperatures will trigger problems like sensitive teeth.

Bottom line

In most cases, the summertime weather does not hurt our teeth directly but what you put your teeth in the increased heat temperature will increase the risk of such seasonal dental discomforts.

Keeping your teeth healthy in summer is also possible with activities like dehydrating yourselves with natural drinks instead of sugary drinks, keeping your teeth and gums clean, neglecting acidic foods along getting a mid-summer dental checkup.

by Lakshme Dental

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Can Poor Oral Health Cause Acne?

If you are struggling with stubborn acne on your face, poor oral health may be to blame. New studies show a relationship between your oral health and the formation of acne. This is due to the presence of propionibacterium in your mouth and throat, which is a bacteria commonly found in pimples. When bad bacteria from cavities, gingivitis, and infected teeth transfer to your face, new pimples can form. Therefore, it’s important to take proactive steps to improve your dental hygiene and minimize the transfer of bacteria to your face.

How Infected Teeth, Periodontitis, and Gingivitis Exacerbate Acne

Acne that is resistant to basic treatment may be caused by an infection in your mouth. The buildup of harmful plaque and tartar in your mouth can also trigger an inflammatory response and exacerbate inflammation, skin irritation, and acne breakouts around your lips, chin, and lower cheeks. Some patients report that their acne improves once their dentist removes an infected tooth. A basic dental exam will allow your dentist to see if your teeth show any signs of infection.

The Link Between Periodontal Disease and Other Skin Diseases

Poor oral hygiene not only impacts the health of your mouth, but also the health of your skin. Periodontal disease has an impact on many skin diseases, including dermatitis, eczema and psoriasis. In one study, 30 percent of patients with dermatitis showed skin improvement once their tooth infection was treated. Another study of children ages 0 to 17 years old found a strong correlation between bleeding gums and eczema. Lastly, a large study of women showed that risk of psoriasis was greater in patients with periodontal bone loss. To protect your skin from potential skin diseases, practice good oral hygiene and schedule regular appointments with your dentist.

Oral Hygiene Tips to Reduce Your Acne

Maintaining healthy teeth is essential to protecting your skin from bacterial infections and breakouts. With these five simple steps, you can be proactive about achieving a healthy smile and clearer skin.

Brush twice a dayIt’s important to brush your teeth regularly to prevent gum disease and tooth decay. According to a study by Delta Dental, 31% of Americans fail to brush their teeth at least twice a day. Brushing your teeth helps remove food and plaque that contain harmful bacteria.

Floss once a dayKeep your teeth and gums healthy by flossing once a day before bedtime. Flossing helps clean out food or debris that is stuck between your teeth and prevents bacteria from accumulating under your gum line. It also makes it less likely for you to get gum disease or cavities from bacteria buildup.

Use fluoridated mouthwashFluoridated mouthwash helps prevent and reverse early signs of tooth decay by protecting your teeth from acids produced by bacteria. It also allows your teeth to remineralize, making your teeth more resistant to future decay.

Remove toothpaste residueToothpaste can burn and irritate your skin. To prevent oral bacteria from getting on your face, make sure to wash your face after you brush your teeth to remove acne-causing particles.

Schedule regular dental visitsDuring your dental visit, your dentist will be able to spot potential dental concerns early on before they worsen into more serious problems. Your dental professional will also give you a dental cleaning to remove any plaque and tartar buildup.

Final Word

If you are wondering if your acne is linked to your oral health, schedule an appointment with your dentist who will be able to evaluate the overall health of your mouth, detect if you have gum disease, cavities, or a tooth infection, and recommend appropriate treatments to get your oral hygiene back on track. I

by Gentle Dental

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Nine Things Your Dentist Wishes You Would Stop Doing

Sure, you know that taking care of your teeth is important, but be honest—how often do you really floss? Yep, that’s what we thought. And your dentist knows it, too. Here, nine things your dentist would really (really) like you to stop doing.

1. Lying About Your Flossing Habits

“We pay a lot of money to go to school and assess the health of your gingiva (i.e., gums),” a New York City dentist tells us. “So, when you tell us that you floss every day, but really you mean every day for the last three days…we can tell.” Oops, guilty as charged. You’re better off being honest, the doctor tells us. “If you don’t floss or don’t know the proper way, we are here to teach you,” she adds.

2. Using At-home Whitening Kits

“DIY whitening kits are generally useless,” says Beverly Hills dentist Dr. Matt Nejad. “The only one I would use is Crest Whitestrips, but even that has limitations, such as difficulty whitening between the teeth, which can result in dark stains remaining in that area.” Not only that, but going the DIY route could also do some serious damage. “Bleaching your teeth with over-the-counter products can lead to thinning enamel, gum irritation and recession, and sensitive teeth,” Dr. Steven Davidowitz (who you can find on RealSelf) tells us. For a mouth full of pearly whites, make an appointment with your dentist instead.

3. Infusing Your Water With Lemon And Lime

We get it—plain old H20 is boring. But that extra twist of lemon or lime contains acid—a big no-no when it comes to oral health. “Acidic mouths lead to tooth decay, gum disease, enamel (aka the outer protective layer of your tooth) damage and bad breath,” says Dr. Davidowitz. To keep your teeth (and dentist) happy, stick to plain water instead.

4. Brushing With A Hard Bristle Toothbrush

A hard brush combined with too much pressure is bad news. (Think recession and potentially brushing off the enamel.) Always stick to soft bristles to keep your gums and teeth healthy.

5. Or Manual Ones

“An electric toothbrush allows for a more consistent and purposeful brushing,” says Dr. Davidowitz. “With manual toothbrushes, you’re more inclined to over brush certain areas and completely miss other areas. In addition, electronic toothbrushes have a two-minute timer built right in so that you are able to give every tooth the TLC it needs,” he adds.

6. Chewing On Hard Objects

That includes acrylic fingernails, pens and ice. And never, ever use your teeth to open things.

7. Freaking Your Kids Out

“I see many children that are doing well in the dental chair, only to lose it when they see their parent getting nervous or telling them to get ready for pain,” a Brooklyn-based dentist tells us. “I feel like I need to be in charge of that setting and parents sometimes get in the way of that.” Got that, Mom?

8. Replacing Good Old-fashioned Toothpaste With Weird Fads

Looking at you, oil pulling (“not scientifically proven to do anything to your teeth,” says one doc) and charcoal powder (“not well regulated and therefore too abrasive, which can strip tooth enamel,” says another).

9. Not Taking Prescription Antibiotics As Directed

A typical prescription might require you to take a tablet every six to eight hours for a certain number of days. What irks your dentist is when you take antibiotics until you feel better and don’t complete the full course. It’s actually a dangerous move, one dentist tells us, because while you may have suppressed the infection, you haven’t actually completely eliminated the bacteria. Stick to your dentist’s order next time, OK?

by Pure Wow

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Views: 42

Binge Eating Disorder and Your Oral Health

Surprisingly, more than 10 million Americans alone are currently affected by severe eating disorders such as bulimia, anorexia, and binge eating. According to the National Eating Disorders Association, eating disorders affect many and need immediate attention.

While anyone can suffer from an eating disorder, they are prevalent in young adult women and even teenagers. In addition to having a negative impact on your health and quality of life, eating disorders affect your self-image. 

The disorder can also affect your social life, like your relationships with friends and families and your performance in school or at work. If you suffer from an eating disorder, it is essential to talk to your dentist. 

Eating disorders can also severely affect your oral health. Keep reading to find out more about how eating disorders can affect your oral health. 

Types of Eating Disorders

Eating disorders are dangerous psychological conditions in which a person’s negative feelings, often about their food or body, affect their eating behavior. An individual with an eating disorder might eat too little food or have sessions where they overeat and then eliminate what has been eaten. 

At other times, some individuals with eating disorders may overeat. All of these abnormal eating behaviors can create a host of severe health problems, including oral problems. Indeed, the state of the mouth might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the term eating disorder. But people must be aware of the risks.

1 Anorexia 

This anorexia disorder typically involves an extreme fear of gaining weight or a person’s dread of becoming fat. Even though these people may be very thin or even extremely underweight, they see themselves as fat.

These people may even attempt to reach or maintain what they think is their perfect body weight. They can even achieve this by literally starving themselves. You might also find these people exercise excessively. 

Others might eat excessive amounts of food in one sitting. Such people may even attempt to get rid of the calories from their bodies by forcing themselves to “throw up” or by the misuse of enemas or laxatives. It is a very extreme case and you might need to consult a doctor immediately. 

2 Binge Eating or Compulsive Overeating

This may affect anyone, men as women. Such people are sometimes described as ‘food addicts’. These people overeat or binge eat but do not regularly try to get rid of the food immediately. They do not try throwing up or misuse laxatives or enemas. Feelings of guilt may make it easier for the person to overeat again.

3 Bulimia

Like anorexia, bulimia is also a disorder that includes the fears of being overweight. But this condition also includes hidden periods of overeating quite similar to binge eating. Overeating may occur several times a week or even several times a day. 

When overeating, individuals often may feel entirely out of control. They may gulp down hundreds of calories, often high in fat and carbohydrates. The amount of food they eat would be greater than what an average person would eat in a meal. 

After they overeat, they are guilty and try to “undo” that they ate too much. They quickly force themselves to “throw up” or try using drugs like laxatives or enemas. This is often called – binging and purging.

Why is Binge Eating Disorder Harmful?

Binge eating is quite similar to bulimia nervosa. It involves the compulsive eating of large quantities of food in a short period but without subsequent purging. The disorder involves periods of excess food intake followed by feelings of shame, guilt, and depression. This negative feeling leads to further binge eating.

Such people actively seek methods to rid themselves of the excess calories eaten during binge eating episodes. If not treated, the process can lead to a gain in weight despite frequent dieting. Finally, the person will become clinically obese.

Moreover, binge eating disorders can also affect your self-image, relationships with family members and friends. If you suffer from this disorder, talking to your dentist in detail is essential. Binge eating can lead to dental health problems. 

Binge eaters were previously classified as food addicts. Such people usually take in large quantities of food or beverages without feeling like they are in control of what they are consuming. These binges are most of the time planned ahead when the person buys “special” foods to binge on, or they could also be spontaneous.

Multiple studies have proved that binge eating disorders can have an adverse effect on oral health. Hence Oral Health Foundation is supporting Eating Disorders Awareness in its mission.

One important aspect is that binge eaters do not “overindulge” in foods. Or they do not simply just have large portions of food items. These are not enjoyable experiences. Instead, they often cause a lot of embarrassment and distress to the eater.

Another noticeable characteristic of binge eating episodes includes eating faster than usual. The disorder also includes eating until feeling uncomfortably full. Moreover, binge eaters eat alone and feel embarrassed at the amount they eat. They also have a feeling of shame, disgust, or guilt after the binge.

Binge Eating Disorders Lead to Dental Problems 

The disorder includes conditions when the binge eater eats large amounts of food when not feeling hungry. Without the proper nutrition, your gums and other soft tissue inside the mouth might start to bleed easily. The glands producing saliva might swell, and individuals might experience chronic dry mouth. 

If you throw up frequently, it can affect teeth too. That is because when strong stomach acid repeatedly flows over teeth, your tooth’s enamel can be lost. You might also notice a change in shape, color, and length.  The condition is know as as acid reflux. The edges of teeth can become thin and break off easily. Eating hot or cold food or drink might become uncomfortable.

Binge eating disorder can badly affect your oral health. Sensitive teeth, tooth erosion, and bad breath are just a few of the signs that your dentists might notice when you are suffering from an eating disorder.

Here are a few of the problems that might arise.

1 Tooth Decay

Binge eaters intake sugary foods or carbonated beverages. As a result, their teeth and gums are exposed to increased acid and plaque, resulting in tooth cavity and tooth decay.

2 Tooth Erosion

Binge eaters tend to have symptoms like the thinning of the enamel on the front teeth due to tooth erosion. When you purge, the stomach acid travels through the mouth. This acid erodes the backside of your front teeth heavily. 

3 Tooth Sensitivity

The high acid levels in the mouth can wear away the tooth enamel leading to tooth sensitivity. This sensitive teeth issues will makes your teeth more sensitive when exposed to hot or cold drinks.

4 Insufficient Calcium

Calcium plays a role in building strong and healthy teeth. Lack of calcium causes teeth to loosen up and possibly fall out. If you do not get enough calcium from a nutritious diet, your body will draw calcium from your teeth and bones, making them weak. 

Recommended Treatment – Binge Eating Disorders

Your dentist is the right person to recognize any early warning signs of binge eating disorders. During your dental examination, they generally carry out checks on the soft and hard tissues of your mouth. 

They also look for signs of tooth decay and tooth erosion and any possible injuries to your mouth. Mouth injuries might have been caused by forcing food into the mouth to make yourself vomit.

Your dentist can also detect any tooth erosion through stomach acid. They can also identify tooth decay from excessive sugar consumption and signs of nutrient deficiencies, if any.

If your dentist suspects that you are suffering from a binge eating disorder, they will talk to you calmly. Your dentist will prescribe a high fluoride toothpaste or varnish to protect your teeth from further decay.

One of the most helpful things your dentist can do is offer detailed instructions about proper oral hygiene. Additionally, your dentist can provide a customized treatment plan for your existing oral problems related arisen due to binge eating disorders.

by Shankari Das

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Four Longitudinal Fracture Issues And How They're Treated

Cracked teeth can happen due to a variety of circumstances: trauma due to an accident, chewing on hard food, a weak tooth structure. Sometimes, those cracks result in a type of damage called longitudinal fractures. While these fractures don’t always cause symptoms, they can cause pain and grow bacteria, which can lead to irritation and infection. Luckily, dental professionals can treat longitudinal tooth fractures, and the process to recovery will depend on the type of fracture. Here are the four types to be aware of.

Types of Longitudinal Fractures

1. Craze Lines:

While craze lines are considered a fracture, they’re not considered a dental emergency and generally do not need treatment. That’s because these lines only affect the tooth enamel and do not cause pain. Teeth grinding, nail-biting, or changing temperatures in the mouth may cause these types of fractures. While these cracks should not cause concern, some adults seek out cosmetic fixes like teeth whitening.

2. Fractured Cusp:

Fractured cusps occur when a piece of a tooth’s chewing surface breaks off, typically near a filling. This type of fracture usually does affect your pulp or cause pain and typically can be repaired through a filling or crown.

According to a report in the Journal of Clinical & Diagnostic Research, fractured cusps are the most common type of longitudinal fracture. A number of conditions may cause them:

Teeth weakened by restorations

Large cavities


Traumatic injuries

Abnormal biting habits, such as teeth grinding

If you do have a fractured cusp and experience pain or sensitivity to cold fluids, reach out to your dental professional for immediate attention.

3. Cracked Tooth:

A cracked tooth is when a crack extends from the crown of the tooth toward the root, though the tooth is not split into pieces. This fracture is more extensive than a fractured cusp and, therefore, more likely to affect the nerve of the tooth. There are several possible causes for a cracked tooth, including:

Teeth grinding

Dental work that weakened the tooth

Trauma to the tooth

Treatment will vary based on the location and extent of the crack, which your dentist may need to investigate. If the nerve of the tooth is affected, an endodontist might perform a root canal treatment. If the crack extends down below the gumline, the tooth may need to be extracted.

4. Split Tooth:

A split tooth is a complete fracture from the crown that extends below the gumline through the middle of the tooth. This is usually the result of an untreated cracked tooth, as the fracture extends over time, it can happen either suddenly or due to the long-term growth of the crack. The tooth may require extraction, but in some cases, an endodontist may save a portion of the tooth and complete a restoration to make the tooth functional.

Who Treats a Longitudinal Fracture?

Depending on what causes a longitudinal fracture and what kind you have, different specialists may be required to diagnose and treat your problem. For example, endodontists have additional training in finding the cause of tooth pain and performing procedures on the interior of the tooth, according to the AAE. They may diagnose a longitudinal fracture or perform root canal treatment.

Alternately, prosthodontists work on tooth restoration to maintain its health, function, comfort, and appearance. They do so by saving and restoring natural teeth or replacing missing teeth with crowns, veneers, bridges, or dentures. When it comes to longitudinal fractures, they would be involved in restoring the tooth with a filling or crown.

Longitudinal Fracture Treatment

If your dentist diagnoses you with one of these longitudinal fractures, rest assured that treatment options are available to help make your mouth healthy again. While more severe cases might call for a root canal procedure or extraction, smaller fractures might be solved by a filling. If you experience any sudden pain in a tooth, see your dental professional as soon as possible for a diagnosis.

Longitudinal fractures might seem frightening or unfamiliar, but don’t worry—the sooner you contact your dental professional, the sooner you can get examined and start treatment. While longitudinal fracture causes aren’t always preventable, maintaining excellent oral health in the meantime can help prevent decay and enamel weakening. That includes brushing twice daily with fluoride toothpaste and soft-bristle toothbrush and cleaning between your teeth daily with floss or another interdental device. Also, be sure to visit your dental professional every six months for regular checkups. The more you maintain your teeth’s health, the more long-lasting strength and sparkle they’ll have!

by Colgate

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Four Foods to Avoid If You Have Sensitive Teeth

Tooth sensitivity is a common problem described as sharp, shooting pain in the teeth, usually experienced while consuming cold food and beverages. Tooth sensitivity occurs when the middle layer of the teeth (known as dentin) gets exposed due to wear, tear, and erosion. The dentin carries nerve endings and is protected by a strong calcified layer (enamel).

What Causes Tooth Sensitivity?

People develop sensitivity due to thinning or wearing of the enamel. The reasons may include:

Consumption of foods that create acid in the mouth

Vigorous brushing of teeth

An injury that may have caused chipping or cracking of the teeth

Grinding teeth at night (bruxism)

Which Foods Can Increase Tooth Sensitivity?

Acidic foods: Regular consumption of foods with high acids, such as citrus fruits, tomatoes, pickles and tea, can cause enamel erosion and result in tooth sensitivity.

Cold drinks: Carbonated beverages such as colas and sodas are loaded with sugar and some acids such as phosphoric and citric acids, which can gradually wear away the enamel of the teeth. Excessive consumption of cold drinks can also increase the risk of sensitivity and cavities.

Sticky candies: The mouth is home to millions of bacteria. Candies such as refined sugar candies, lollipops, and caramel chocolates stick on the surface of the teeth, and the bacteria present in the mouth use this sugar to form acids, which destroy the enamel resulting in cavities. 

Alcoholic and sugary beverages: Cocktails are alcoholic drinks mixed with sugar syrups, soda, and fruit juices. Excessive consumption of cocktails allows the oral bacteria to grow and form acid, thereby increasing the risk of enamel erosion. Moreover, the consumption of alcohol reduces the flow of saliva, which is needed to prevent bacterial buildup on the surface of the teeth.

How to Deal with Tooth Sensitivity?

Avoiding the consumption of acidic foods and carbonated beverages is a necessary first step, as they can expedite enamel depletion. Meanwhile, measures that can help deal with tooth sensitivity include:

Visiting a dentist: A dentist can refill the damaged part of the enamel with tooth fillings to treat sensitivity and prevent further damage to the tooth.

Maintaining oral hygiene: Brushing twice daily using fluoridated toothpaste and a soft-bristled toothbrush will help prevent the growth of bacteria on the surface of the teeth.

Adding fibrous foods to the diet: Fibrous foods such as cucumber, celery, and apples involve rigorous chewing, which increases the flow of saliva.

How is the consumption of carbonated or acidic drinks related to tooth sensitivity?

Dr Vipul Goel, a dentist associated with Apollo 24|7, states that “Consumption of carbonated or acidic drinks can erode the enamel (the outer layer of the tooth) and expose the dentine (the part of the tooth with nerve sensations), increasing the risk of dental caries or sensitivity.”


Continuous use of carbonated beverages and acidic foods can cause irreversible damage to the teeth. Therefore, to reduce sensitivity and avoid cavities one must follow proper oral hygiene measures such as brushing, flossing, and tongue cleaning regularly. Furthermore, regular visits to the dentist can help keep sensitivity in check and prevent further damage to the tooth.


by Apollo Pharmacy

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Should I Rinse My Mouth Out With Water?

Your oral hygiene routine is your smile’s first line of defense when it comes to protecting your teeth from the harmful effects of gum disease and tooth decay. While rinsing your mouth out with water can sometimes be good for your dental health, in some cases, patients should avoid rinsing. 


If you’ve recently undergone an invasive dental procedure, saltwater rinses may be an essential part of your aftercare instructions. A saltwater rinse is when patients are instructed to make a homemade solution combining 1/2 teaspoon of salt to a cup of warm water. Once the salt is fully dissolved, patients should gently swish the rinse around in their mouths, avoiding swallowing it. Saltwater rinses are usually recommended to keep any incision sites or soft tissue abrasions clean while they heal. Because the affected area may be tender for a few days following the procedure, saltwater rinses are a good alternative to brushing or flossing.

The rinse will keep the area clean, helping patients avoid infection. Once the affected area is healed, you may return to your regular at-home oral hygiene routine.


While patients should brush and floss twice a day to maintain their dental health, these activities are not always convenient when you are outside of your house. If you spend most of the day outside of your home, working, or at school, consider rinsing your mouth out with water following midday meals or snacks.

This will help prevent dry mouth as well as wash away food residue left behind on your teeth. Chewing sugar-free gum may also help dislodge any food particles stuck between your teeth. The goal is to keep your breath fresh and your smile free of food residue to avoid plaque and tartar buildup and dental discoloration while on the go. Once you return home, you should brush and floss as usual.


Many patients utilize kinds of toothpaste or mouthwashes that contain active ingredients that combat plaque and tartar buildup, tooth discoloration, and dental sensitivity. These ingredients are essential for these products to perform as intended. When you rinse your mouth out with water immediately following brushing or using mouthwash, these ingredients get washed away as well.

Because these ingredients are meant to remain on your teeth, this may impact your overall dental health. Patients are advised to avoid rinsing their mouth out with water immediately following brushing or using mouthwash.


by Coastal Dentistry

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How to Deal with Wounds or Cuts in Your Mouth

How can something so tiny be so annoying and painful? Cuts inside your mouth can happen to anyone. They can make your lips or cheeks swell, and they burn when you eat citrus fruits or drink hot beverages. Thankfully, because they are so common there are clear and easy tips to help them heal. We'll give you the rundown of why these little injuries can be a real pain and answer your questions about how to treat inner lip or mouth wounds.

Why do mouth wounds happen?

Cuts on the lips, tongue and the inside of the mouth happen to almost everyone. These areas have the softest, thinnest skin on your body, so the smallest bump or scrape can break the skin. You may have gotten wounds from your teeth cutting the inside of your mouth or bruised your lips from accidentally biting down. Some inner lip wounds can be canker sores or cold sores.

Most inner lip or outer lip wounds are minor. Sometimes injuries can be more serious, such as injury to the face in a fall or car accident. In these instances, you should call your dentist to examine the wound.

It may be scary at first to feel or see a wound in your mouth because they tend to bleed more than a cut on another part of your body. Not only is that skin soft and vulnerable, but it's close to blood vessels, increasing the amount of bleeding. It's important to clean this area with good oral hygiene which will help it heal.

How do you treat cuts on your lips?

If the cut or wound is on the outside of the mouth like on your lips, you can easily keep it clean with mild soap, warm water and a clean cloth. Apply pressure with the towel to stop or slow any bleeding.

What should you put on cuts inside your lip or mouth?

You can easily do inner lip wound care at home. Rinse with salt water or a 1:1 solution of hydrogen peroxide and water multiple times a day, like after meals. Salt water rinses have been shown to help your body heal. Don't swallow these solutions, especially not hydrogen peroxide. Don't worry if putting hydrogen peroxide on the lip or mouth wound makes your wound foam up a little, that's normal when peroxide meets skin. Cleaning the wound with these solutions will ensure there's no dirt or debris in the cut and allow your body to heal itself even faster.

The best way to heal a cut in your mouth in 3 steps

Often small wounds in the mouth can heal quickly with good hygiene and time. The American Dental Association (ADA) says minor sores or irritations like these can heal within a week or two. Follow these three steps from the University of Rochester Medical Center:

Do salt water rinses or hydrogen peroxide and water solution rinses after meals to clear bacteria and food debris

Make sure you aren't touching the cut with your tongue or fingers. It's tempting to check on it, but touching it may get the wound dirty and slow down healing. Wash your hands regularly just in case you do touch it.

If your inner lip wound has caused swelling or bruising, you should press gently on the wound with an ice pack or crushed ice wrapped with a clean cloth.

If your at-home care is not helping and you're worried about it, you may need to see the doctor.

When should you call your doctor about a mouth wound?

Here is where it may be scarier than a little cut. Pay attention to your body and if any of the following are true, contact your doctor:

Bleeding does not stop even after putting pressure with a cloth

The cut on your inner lip is deep

The cut extends from your mouth to the face

The cut in the lip is a puncture or hole

You develop any of these signs of infection:

Redness that expands to the surrounding area

Tender and painful

Fever develops

A pimple-like swelling with pus

Swelling increases and bruising of skin or hematoma may occur

If your mouth wound is around a tooth and the tooth is loose or broken, call your dentist. While you are waiting to see your dentist, the ADA suggests cold compresses and rinses in the meantime for sores and mouth injuries.

How do you prevent cuts in your mouth or on your lips?

If you've developed an injury from sports or other physical activities, a mouth guard could prevent your teeth from scraping your cheeks. Mouth guards provide a solid yet soft surface for your teeth. Your teeth can clench down on it instead of the inside of your mouth! They will also prevent you from biting your lips and accidentally breaking the skin. Mouth guards can be found in stores or customized for you by your dentist.

Be patient and let your cut heal

By keeping your wound clean, you are letting your body focus on healing the wound. If you are still concerned about the pain or swelling, call your doctor or dentist, and they can assess if you need further treatment. Until then, rinse with salt water or a mix of hydrogen peroxide and water, stop yourself from touching it and use cold compresses to help with any swelling or bruising. With these tips, the injury is on its way to healing.

by Colgate

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How to Keep Your Teeth Healthy

Keeping a great smile is largely made possible by practicing healthy dental habits. Many dental and oral issues may be prevented from developing if you just practice good oral hygiene and other habits that are good for the teeth. Of course, you will still need to go the dentist for regular checkups. But at least you will prevent any possible dental problems at the onset and be able to maintain healthy teeth.

Dental Habits You Should Always Keep Up

You should keep up dental habits so that you will maintain and achieve that perfect smile you’ve been dreaming of. These habits are very easy to develop if you just practice them. Aside from regularly going to the dentist, other healthy dental habits include brushing, flossing, staying away from tobacco, and limiting sweet intake.

How to Keep Your Teeth Healthy

The following are some of the basic but helpful habits that you can incorporate in your daily life to your teeth healthy:

Brush your teeth two to three times a day. Everybody brushes their teeth, but not everybody does it right and regularly. Dentists advise that a person must brush his teeth at least twice a day. And it’s not enough that you brush your teeth, you must do it properly. You can also ask a professional or your dentist on what toothbrush and toothpaste are best for you. Also, you need to replace your toothbrush at least every three months to ensure the best results.

Floss daily. Brushing alone is not enough. There are spaces and parts of your teeth that brushing can’t reach, particularly space in-between your teeth. The most effective way to clean the spaces in-between the teeth and between the teeth and gums is flossing. This helps prevents tartar and plaque build-up. You must at least floss once or twice a day.

Limiting your snack intake. You must avoid eating foods that contain high amounts of starch and sugar. These snacks are usually the cause of plaque build-up. Minimizing your sugar intake helps reduce the development of tooth decay. Instead of eating unhealthy snacks, better eat vegetables and fruits. But if you ever eat sugary and starchy foods, don’t forget to rinse your mouth after and drink plenty of water.

Stay away from tobacco as much as possible. Smoking or chewing tobacco and other tobacco-based products can lead to gum and dental problems, not to mention the risk for oral cancer.

Healthy Dental Habit #1: Visit the Dentist!

This is the most important habit that you should keep up: visiting the dentist for a dental cleaning and regular check-ups. While the other habits help you prevent dental issues, there are things that you cannot just control without proper intervention from the professionals. Plaque build-up is bound to happen despite the fact that you regularly floss and brush your teeth. To make sure that you achieve and maintain healthy teeth and smile, it’s highly advised you visit the dentist twice a year for check-ups and cleaning.

by East Valley Dental Professionals

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Abscessed Tooth: What You Need to Know

What is an abscessed tooth?

An abscessed tooth is a pocket of pus that can form in different parts of a tooth as a result of a bacterial infection. It’s sometimes called a dental abscess. An abscessed tooth causes moderate to severe pain that can sometimes radiate to your ear or neck.

Left untreated, an abscessed tooth can turn into a serious, life-threatening condition. Read on to learn more about the different types and how to recognize them.

What are the different types?

The different types of dental abscesses depend on location.

The three most common types are:

Periapical abscess. This is an abscess at the tip of a tooth’s root.

Periodontal abscess. This is an abscess on the gum next to the root of a tooth. It might also spread to the surrounding tissue and bone.

Gingival abscess. This is an abscess on the gums.

What are the symptoms?

The main symptom of an abscessed tooth is throbbing pain near a tooth or in your gums. The pain usually comes on suddenly and gets worse over time.

Other symptoms include:

pain that radiates to your ear, jaw, or neck

pain that gets worse when you lie down

pain when chewing or biting

facial redness and swelling

swollen, red gums

tooth sensitivity

discolored or loose teeth

bad breath

foul taste in your mouth

tender or swollen lymph nodes in your neck or under your jaw


If an abscess ruptures, you’ll feel almost immediate pain relief. You might also notice a sudden bad taste in your mouth as the pus drains out.

What causes it?

Bacteria getting into your teeth or gums leads to a dental abscess. However, the way this happens depends on the type of abscess:

Periapical abscess. Bacteria enter the pulp within your teeth, usually through a cavity. Pulp refers to the soft, inner part of your tooth. This is made up of nerves, connective tissue, and blood vessels.

Periodontal abscess. Gum disease usually causes this type, but it can also be the result of an injury.

Gingival abscess. A foreign body, such as a popcorn hull or toothbrush bristle, gets embedded in your gums.


How is it treated?

Treatment for an abscessed tooth focuses on clearing up the infection and relieving pain. Depending on your symptoms, your dentist might start with a dental X-ray. This will help them see whether the infection has spread to other areas.

Depending on the type and severity of your abscess, treatment options include:

Draining the abscess. Your dentist will make a small cut in the abscess to drain the pus. They’ll follow up by cleaning the area with a saline solution.

A root canal procedure. A root canal involves drilling into the affected tooth to drain the abscess and remove any infected pulp. Next, your dentist will fill and seal the pulp chamber, which holds pulp, and the root canal. They may also cap your tooth with a crown to strengthen it. A crown procedure is usually done during a separate appointment.

Tooth extraction. If your tooth is too damaged, your dentist might remove it before draining the abscess. Your dentist may pull the tooth if it can’t be saved and then drain the abscess.

Antibiotics. If the infection has spread beyond the abscessed area or you have a weakened immune system, your dentist might prescribe oral antibiotics to help clear the infection.

Removal of foreign object. If your abscess is caused by a foreign object in your gums, your dentist will remove it. They’ll finish up by cleaning the area with a saline solution.

If you can’t get in to see your dentist right away, you can take an over-the-counter anti-inflammatory drug, such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) to help with the pain. Rinsing your mouth with warm salt water may also help.

You can purchase over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medication online.

Are there any complications?

It’s important to have any abscessed tooth treated by a dentist. Even if it’s already ruptured, you’ll want to have the area examined and cleaned by your doctor to make sure the infection doesn’t spread.

Left untreated, an infection can spread to your jaw and other parts of your head and neck, including your brain. In rare cases, it can even lead to sepsis. This is a life-threatening complication of an infection.

Go to the emergency room if you have an abscessed tooth accompanied by:

high fever

facial swelling

difficulty swallowing

rapid heart rate


These are all signs of a serious infection that needs immediate treatment.

What’s the outlook?

An abscessed tooth should clear up within a few days of treatment. Even if it seems to drain on its own, it’s important to follow up with your dentist to make sure the infection doesn’t spread to another area.

You can reduce your risk of an abscessed tooth by practicing good oral hygiene and having regular dental checkups every six months.

by healthline

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Gum Inflammation Linked To Other Diseases

Oral and gum inflammation are not only indications of decreased oral health, but they can also gauge or affect larger health problems. According to an article on the Mayo Clinic's website, "Your oral health might affect, be affected by, or contribute to" heart disease, arthritis, Alzheimer's, diabetes, pregnancy, and other conditions.

Heart Disease

No direct link between gum disease and heart disease has been proven yet, but the possibility is always being explored. An abstract published on the American Heart Association's website in 2012 suggests that inflammatory gum disease may be related to the way bad cholesterol affects the body. And of course, as Ann Bolger, M.D. states, "People with periodontitis often have risk factors that not only put their mouth at risk, but their heart and blood vessels, too."People who smoke, are sedentary, or have problems controlling their weight or blood pressure tend to be candidates for both health issues, so the connection is certainly one worth considering.

So, in addition to a good diet and exercise, like hiking or nightly walks, consider taking good care of your oral health part of your heart-healthy routine. There are products that fight germs for 12 hours, can help keep your gums, and maybe even your heart, healthy.

Rheumatoid Arthritis

According to the Arthritis Foundation, "new research suggests that tooth loss – a marker for periodontal (gum) disease – may predict rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and its severity. The more teeth lost, the greater the risk of RA."Before periodontal disease becomes acute, one major indicator is gum inflammation. However, the good news is that periodontal disease is treatable with regular dental checkups, oral care and attention to your health. The earlier you start attending to this kind of discomfort, the greater your chances of preventing serious gum disease.

Alzheimer's Disease

It may surprise you to find out that oral inflammation is also associated with the progression of Alzheimer's Disease. Periodontal disease can be a factor in how Alzheimer's Disease gets worse. The Journal of Alzheimer's Disease says certain kind of oral bacteria "are implicated in the development of a number of inflammatory pathologies at remote organ sites, including Alzheimer's disease (AD)."Start taking preventative measures early on by brushing and flossing regularly to ensure periodontal disease is one less factor in negotiating good health as you age.

Make a Habit of Good Oral Care

If you're not sure where to start, be sure to brush and floss twice a day, and make an appointment with your dentist to learn how best to care for yourself, and your teeth, through the years.

by Colgate

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Views: 33

How to Avoid Potholes in Your Mouth

We are painfully aware what potholes do to our cars and trucks. They are the result of high usage and high impact on our roads which lead to cracks in the pavement.  If the cracks are not fixed, they turn into large holes.  This analogy plays out similarly with decay in your teeth. “Dental potholes” are small perforations in the enamel that become sensitive and are prone to tooth decay. Over time, the potholes in your mouth will get bigger and deeper unless you take care of the problem.


The food and drinks you consume impact the health of your teeth. Acidic food and drinks can gradually wear down the enamel and make your teeth soft. Another leading cause of tooth erosion is heavy clenching or grinding. There are people who unconsciously, grind their teeth while asleep and others do it subconsciously, perhaps while they’re working. The grinding can be caused by stress and anxiety but also by sleep disorders.

For people who drink alcohol or smoke, consider this 2016 study by the Journal of the American Dental Association. Researchers discovered that people who drink or smoke are about twice as likely to grind their teeth.


Dr. Alejandro Cavazos at Advanced Smile Care said there are several treatment options. One is a sealant that protects the chewing surface of the back teeth, where potholes typically arise. The sealants help avoid further decay or fillings. He said if you do have potholes, it’s best to take care of the decay when it’s small.  There are several safe materials available for fillings. As for the grinders at night, ask your dentist about getting fit with a mouth guard to protect your teeth.

Cavazos says anyone who is experiencing mouth pain should visit the dentist office immediately. Do not wait any longer. This is a sign of nerve damage, which may require more extensive treatment such as a  root canal, a crown or perhaps an extraction.

“The level of predictability goes up and better treatment outcomes can occur by catching potholes before they become sinkholes,” said Cavazos. “We can help in this way and other ways by addressing dental issues that are relatively small and straightforward before they become large problems, more involved and more costly.”

by Advanced Smile care

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Five problems with teeth which can mean more serious health issues

Experts have revealed a host of oral health symptoms which you should never ignore.

Experiencing problems with your teeth, gums or mouth can be an indicator of an underlying condition which develops silently in your body. While looking after your teeth is important in order to maintain that bright smile, it is vital to keep an eye out for any other warning signs that could signal serious disease, HullLive reports.

From kidney disease to iron deficiency - your teeth can reveal if there are any other health issues. Experts at have listed five health signs that your teeth can reveal and stressed that anyone who experiences them, should seek medical advice.

These are the five different warning signs that you should not ignore:

1. Eating disorders and tooth enamel

When suffering from an eating disorder such as bulimia, repeated vomiting can lead to stomach acid flowing over the teeth and wearing away enamel. This can cause enamel to appear translucent and subsequently increase the risk of tooth decay.

Extensive tooth brushing or rinsing after vomiting can also contribute to tooth decay.

2. Anemia and pale gums

Pale gums may indicate that someone is suffering from an iron deficiency, meaning your body does not produce enough red blood cells. Healthy gums are usually a relatively consistent shade of pink but for those suffering from anemia, the colour may appear more faded or white.

This paleness can also impact the tongue and mucous membranes inside your mouth. Anemia can also cause inflammation of the tongue, known as glossitis. This will cause the tongue to turn into a beefy red colour and can make it feel sore and tender.

3. Osteoporosis and tooth loss

Osteoporosis impacts all the bones of the body, including the jawbones. When the jawbones become less dense, those suffering from osteoporosis may find that their teeth move around more than average.

Osteoporosis can lead to tooth loss and gum disease or affect dental implants. People with untreated coeliac disease may also develop osteoporosis.

4. Oral Thrush and HIV

Oral thrush is usually not a serious cause for concern, however patients who already have a weakened immune system might be more susceptible to developing the condition. Oral thrush is often among the first symptoms of HIV and can also be a sign that you're at risk of developing more severe infections.

5. Tooth Loss and kidney disease

People who suffer from kidney disease often develop mouth sores or experience changes in taste. Due to a lack of saliva and subsequent dry mouth, acidity increases and can cause tooth decay and eventual tooth loss.

Research also suggests that people with kidney disease and those on dialysis are at higher risk of developing periodontal disease and other oral health problems.

by Elaine Blackburne and Victoria Scheer

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Four Apps to Make Brushing Fun for Adults

The Top Dental Apps for Adults

Brushing your teeth is the most important step of your dental hygiene routine, and dentists recommend doing this at least twice a day. Since bacteria is all around you, including in the food you eat, your teeth are vulnerable to decay. That’s why it’s essential to not just brush your teeth, but to brush them thoroughly.

Dentists such as Dr. Kenneth Troutman in Huntingburg, IN, suggest brushing for two minutes each time you brush. This ensures that you’re reaching every area of your teeth and removing all of the plaque that might be stuck to them. If you’re struggling to brush for at least two minutes every time or just need more motivation to brush, check out these helpful dental apps that you can download.

1. Brush DJ

Unless you’re already using a timer app when you brush your teeth, you probably just brush your teeth for a certain length of time and assume it’s been two minutes. With the Brush DJ app, you’re able to know exactly how long you’re brushing without having to guess.

This app lets you choose a song from your own personal library or online and plays exactly two minutes of it. That way when the song stops playing, you know you’ve brushed long enough. The app also allows you to set reminders to do things like buy a new toothbrush, schedule a dentist appointment, or even let you know when it’s time to brush.

2. Brushy

An important part of brushing is making sure you brush every inch of your teeth — even the hard to reach areas that are hard to see. Brushy is an app that helps you remember to do this. It shows you a diagram of a mouth and indicates which section of your teeth to brush and for how long.

The app also features a simple timer that counts down from two minutes so you know how long to brush for. Thanks to the visual aid it offers, Brushy is perfect for people who need a reminder to brush more thoroughly.

3. Teeth Whitener

Having a white smile can boost your confidence and oral health as well. According to dentists like Dr. Randy Allain in Highland, MI, the whiter your teeth are, the more motivated you are to maintain them. On the other hand, having a dull smile will likely make you want to improve it by brushing regularly with whitening toothpastes.

Teeth Whitener is an app that allows you to upload a picture of yourself to see what you would look like with whiter teeth. It also allows you to track your progress and compare your current smile to past versions of your smile. Download this app to receive motivation to brush daily so you can achieve the smile of your dreams.

4. Colgate Connect

If you’re looking for a more advanced, personalized brushing app, try the Colgate Connect app. While it does require you to purchase the compatible toothbrush to use the app, users have found that it dramatically improves their oral health.

This app has a wide variety of features to help you improve your brushing. Not only does it include a two-minute timer, but it also allows you to upload a diagram of your own set of teeth. It even shows you spots that you missed and highlights areas that need extra attention.

The app also includes a fun game that lets you unlock new characters while you brush, making it a great app for children as well.

Seeking Additional Dental Care

Mobile apps are a great way to make sure you’re brushing your teeth consistently, but there are other important aspects of maintaining good oral health. Some of these include flossing frequently and choosing a good, alcohol-free mouthwash. It’s recommended that you floss and rinse your mouth with mouthwash at least once a day.

Visiting your dentist regularly for checkups is also crucial.

by Dentistry Review

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Seven Reasons Why Women Have Better Oral Health Than Most Men

Men and women have the same mouth structure, consisting of the teeth, gums, tongue, and jaw. Anatomically speaking, men and women are pretty much the same when it comes to their mouths. However, many studies have proven that women's oral health is far superior to men. 

Most of us know how necessary bi-annual dental appointments are; however, women are much more likely to attend regular cleanings and exams. Below you will find other common reasons women are thought to have better oral health than most men. 

Periodontal Disease Increases With Heavy Drinking

Plaque accumulation on the teeth and gumline happens quickly without regularly seeing a dentist for check-ups and cleanings. People who fail to see their dentist every six months often suffer from hardened plaque, which leads to periodontal disease. As soon as bacteria accumulate between the teeth and gums, visible side effects, including swelling and bleeding, begin. Men are more likely to develop periodontal disease, mouth sores, and tooth decay due to heavy drinking. 

Men Are More Likely To Suffer From Dry Mouth

Certain medications, including antidepressants and those for high blood pressure, can significantly impact natural saliva production. Saliva plays a critical role in controlling cavity-causing bacteria and protecting your enamel. Because men are more likely to suffer from high blood pressure, they should be mindful of common side effects associated with certain medications. 

The Risk of Dental Trauma Is Greater

Men are more likely to suffer from dental trauma because they are much more involved in contact sports than women. Mouth injuries like knocked-out teeth, fractures, cracks, and other trauma-related issues can significantly affect the health of your smile. Using a mouthguard can help protect the teeth while participating in contact sports. 

Men Use Their Teeth More as Tools 

Using your teeth as tools to open things is never a good idea, and men are much more likely to suffer from damage because of this. From opening bottles to ripping open a snack bag, using your teeth as tools can result in a cracked tooth or damaged enamel. 

Routine Cleanings and Exams Aren't a Priority 

Dentists recommend visiting a dental clinic once every six months for routine dental cleanings and exams. During these appointments, accumulated tartar and plaque are removed, and your mouth is checked for potential issues. A study published by the CDC showed that women are more likely to schedule routine dental appointments than men. Women are also more likely to follow a dentist's recommendations than men. 

Men Are More Prone To Oral Cancer

Males over the age of 40 are more prone to oral cancer than any other demographic. The most commonly affected area of the mouth where oral cancer develops is the lips, gums, tongue, and floor of the mouth. Oral cancer spreads quickly and can cause chronic pain, loss of function, facial disfiguration, and even death. 

Chewing or smoking tobacco increases the chances of being diagnosed with oral cancer. Men who are tobacco users should make a strong point of seeing a dentist regularly to perform oral cancer screenings.

Routine Hygiene Isn't as Much of a Priority 

In general, women are thought to pay more attention to their body's overall health. When it comes to oral hygiene, women are 26% more likely to floss daily, and 57% of women commit to brushing twice a day vs. 49% of men. 

When was the last time you visited your dentist? If it's been longer than six months, it's been too long.

by Elite dental and Denture PC

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How Long Should I Brush My Teeth?

It’s easy to get into a routine when you brush your teeth, but have you ever wondered if you’re spending enough time on this important task?


You should brush your teeth twice a day for two minutes each time to make sure you’re removing enough plaque. It can help to set a timer for this amount of time since most people only brush for about 45 seconds. 


It’s best to hold your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to your gums. Use short strokes and gentle pressure to move your toothbrush along the outer surfaces of your upper and then lower teeth. Do the same with the inner surfaces of your teeth but hold your toothbrush vertically and brush up and down. Brush the chewing surfaces using a back-and-forth motion and brush your tongue by moving your toothbrush from front to back.


Brushing your teeth only once a day allows harmful bacteria to quickly build up in your mouth or in between teeth. 


There’s not a strong consensus either way on whether you should floss before or after you brush your teeth. The important thing is that you floss and brush thoroughly. 


It’s OK to brush your teeth 3 times a day if you’d like. Whether you brush 2 or 3 times a day, it’s important to not apply too much pressure. This can damage the enamel and gum tissue, which can make your teeth more sensitive. 


As you sleep, your body produces less saliva, making it easier for bacteria in your mouth to multiply without getting rinsed away. If you don’t brush your teeth in the morning, the bacteria have a chance to multiply and eat away at the enamel in your teeth.


If you’re in a situation where you can’t brush your teeth, you can rinse your mouth with water and swish it around. 

To be more thorough, wash your hands and rub across your teeth and gums with your wet finger. Then wrap a wet paper towel around your fingers and rub it over your teeth. Rinse well and swish water around in your mouth.


In general, you should brush your teeth as soon as possible after eating. But if you eat acidic foods, like oranges or grapefruits, you should wait at least 30 minutes before brushing since your enamel can become temporarily weakened.


A bacteria-fighting mouthwash can help prevent gum disease, and one that prevents fluoride can help prevent tooth decay. However, it’s not harmful to brush your teeth without using mouthwash. 



Brushing for two minutes twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste and soft-bristled toothbrush is recommended. You should also floss once a day and talk to your dentist about which type of mouthwash he or she recommends for your needs.

by Cedar Mountain Dental

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Should Kids Take a Toothbrush to School?

As a parent, you care about your child’s oral health habits. But you may be wondering if they need to go so far as to take a toothbrush to school. Here, we’ll discuss a few tips to promote superb oral health for your child this school year.

Teach Them to Care for Their Teeth at Home

If your kids properly care for their teeth every day while at home, there is no need for them to bring a toothbrush to school. Teach them that they should brush their teeth with fluoride toothpaste for two minutes every day in the morning before school. Then at night before going to bed, they again need to brush their teeth for two minutes and to floss between their teeth, moving the floss in a C-motion to reach under the gums and scrape around each tooth.

Provide Your Kids with a Healthy Diet

A healthy diet will not just benefit your child’s overall health, but their dental health too. Limit foods and drinks that are high in sugar and carbohydrates, like candy, white bread, cookies, crackers, and potato chips, which all contribute to an increased risk of tooth decay. Sugar feeds the bad bacteria in your child’s mouth. In turn, the bacteria accumulate into a sticky film of plaque and produce acids that destroy tooth enamel, causing decay. Instead of packing their lunchbox with prepackaged treats, pack nutritious foods that are good for their teeth, like string cheese, whole grains, lean protein, fruits, and vegetables. Additionally, send them to school with a refillable water bottle so they can stay hydrated throughout the day. Sufficient water allows for a healthy flow of saliva, which will help clean and remineralize your child’s teeth, and prevent bad breath and mouth dryness.

Bring Your Kids to Helotes Family Dentistry for Routine Dental Visits

Another vital part of your child’s oral care routine is bringing them in for regular dental cleanings and checkups. We recommend your child’s first trip to the dentist to happen around their first birthday, followed by visits every six months. Adhering to this schedule allows us to track your child’s oral development, and to make sure their mouth and teeth stay clean and healthy.

by Helotes Family Dentistry

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What You Need To Know About Flossing Your Teeth

Do you floss your teeth on a daily basis? The importance of flossing is most likely stressed to you by your dentist or dental hygienist each time you go in for cleanings. Why is flossing so important to your oral health? 

The Importance of Flossing

You probably know that one purpose of flossing is to remove food particles from between your teeth. But it also helps to scrape tartar and plaque out from between your teeth and along the gum line. Flossing can reach parts of your teeth that brushing can’t. It even strengthens your gums, making them more resilient to plaque, bacteria, and infection. 

Benefits of Flossing:

Prevent tooth decay. Removing food and plaque from in between your teeth can help to prevent cavities from forming in areas that are hard to reach with your toothbrush. 

Prevent gum disease. Flossing removes food and plaque from along and under the gum line, which helps to prevent gum disease. 

Prevent bad breath. Preventing tooth decay and gum disease helps to keep your breath more fresh.

Save money. By avoiding cavity fillings and other dental procedures you can save money on your dental care. 

How To Floss Your Teeth

Follow these basic steps to effective flossing:

From your spool of floss, break off a piece about 18 to 24 inches long. 

Wind it around your middle fingers until they are a few inches apart. 

Use your index fingers to pull the floss tight and slide it in between each of your teeth. Make sure the floss rubs against both of the teeth. 

In each space between your teeth, curve the floss, slightly wrapping it around the sides of each tooth so that it is able to reach the space between the tooth and the gums. 

Repeat this process in each space between your teeth, using a clean part of the floss each time. 

Tip: If you have a particularly tight spot between any of your teeth where it’s hard to get the floss between and back out, simply unwrap one end of the floss from your finger and pull it out from the side.

Flossing and Brushing: Which Should You Do First?

In your personal oral care routine, which do you normally do first, the brushing or the flossing? It is actually recommended that you floss your teeth first. The reason is that flossing loosens food and plaque from your teeth, making it easier to brush it away. Also, it is easier to remember to floss if you do it first. You are much less likely to skip brushing than you are to skip flossing, so once you get in the habit of flossing first you won’t forget. 

How Often Should You Floss?

Dentists recommend that you floss at least once a day and brush at least twice a day. Flossing too often may irritate your gums and make them more susceptible to gum disease. 

Different Types of Floss

Standard floss. This is your typical floss made of nylon. It comes waxed or unwaxed, flavored or unflavored. 

Dental tape. This is a flat strip of floss that is shaped more like a narrow ribbon. It is helpful if you have any larger spaces between your teeth.

Super floss. This floss is specially made for flossing with braces, bridges, or other dental work. It has one end that is stiffened (like the end of a shoelace) to make it easier to thread under braces wires, spongy floss to clean around your brackets, and regular floss for getting between your teeth. 

Other Flossing Tools

Waterpik. Basically a water flosser, this is a motorized tool that sprays water with force. It can be used to clean out the spaces between your teeth. It is especially useful when you have braces or dental work.

Plackers. If you have trouble maneuvering floss or you just need a faster method for flossing on the go, floss picks or plackers are a bit easier to use. These consist of a small piece of floss stretched between the ends of a plastic stick in a U-shape. You simply push the floss between each of your teeth. Rinse it off a few times as you go. 

by Smiles Maker

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What is Crown Lengthening?

Unless you're a dental trivia champion, the term "crown lengthening" probably isn't familiar to you. Even though it's perhaps a new term to you, a crown lengthening procedure is actually relatively standard. Think of it as the dental treatment you need to make the next dental treatment possible. Your dental professional may tell you that you'll need this procedure because you don't have enough exposed tooth surface for them to place a crown or bridge appropriately. If so, you're probably very curious about what crown lengthening is.

Crown lengthening surgery involves removing gum tissue, bone, or both to expose more of a tooth. It's done for therapeutic and sometimes cosmetic reasons. Let's go over why you may need it and what to expect from pre-op to recovery!

Why Would I Need Crown Lengthening?

Imagine this: your dental professional has examined your teeth and determined you need a crown. But what if there is not enough tooth for a crown? A periodontist may then suggest a crown lengthening procedure to support a dental crown or tooth bridge. There are a few reasons why you may not have enough tooth for a recommended treatment:

Your tooth may have broken off at the gumline.

Your gumline extends too far along your tooth for it to receive the restorative treatment it needs.

Your tooth structure isn't strong enough for restoration.

A crown or filling has fallen off, and there is decay underneath.

Is There a Cosmetic Reason To Get Crown Lengthening?

According to the American Academy of Periodontology (AAP), a "gummy smile" is a common reason for getting a crown lengthening procedure. You may hear this term about short looking teeth. But did you know that "short" teeth aren't actually short? They may just have an excess of gum tissue! It's important to note that every smile is different, so some people are just born with more gum tissue. However, we believe you deserve to feel great about your smile! So we recommend having a conversation with your dental professional if you are self-conscious of your smile and would like to consider crown lengthening as a cosmetic option.

How Do I Prepare?

A periodontist will review your medical history and X-rays before setting a date for the procedure. You may also have a dental hygiene appointment done right before crown lengthening, as this will decrease your infection risk by clearing out any bacteria, plaque, and tartar.

If your dental professional performs a crown lengthening procedure to reveal enough tooth for a crown, there's a chance they will put a temporary crown on your tooth to protect it before surgery. This allows your periodontist to see how a crown will fit on your tooth once the tooth has "lengthened" and the gums around it have healed. After three months of healing, a final crown will fit onto your lengthened tooth.

Another way to prepare for crown lengthening and to determine if it's the best option for you is to consider the cost. The price of your procedure will depend on several factors, such as whether or not you have dental insurance, what type of surgery you're having performed, how many teeth need it, your location, and whether it's for a restorative or cosmetic reason. Dental Treatment Guide estimates crown lengthening costs between $1000 and $2,000, while Cost Helper Health estimates it between $1,000 and $3,000.

What Can I Expect From a Crown Lengthening Surgery?

There are three types of crown lengthening surgery: a gingivectomy, surgical extrusion, and apically repositioned flap surgery. Your dental professional will know which type of surgery is best for you, based on the following considerations, noted by Medical News Today:

The appearance of your tooth's root

The crown to root ratio

If there is any bone loss

Aesthetic considerations

The position of the tooth that needs crown lengthening

What type of reconstructive surgery is necessary (like a filling or cap)

Crown lengthening surgery is usually done with a combination of local anesthesia and a sedative. Your periodontist will use a scalpel, laser, or a combination of the two tools, depending on the type of surgery. The amount of time your crown lengthening surgery will take will depend on the number of teeth that need treatment. It will also depend on if both bone and soft tissue need removal. You may only have one tooth that needs crown lengthening, but neighboring teeth are often also included in the treatment. This means that the tissues reshape gradually.

What comes next?

You can take anti-inflammatory medication and use a cold compress to help with any pain or swelling after your surgery. While you recover, we recommend consuming soft, healthy foods and rinsing your mouth after meals. Staying away from hard, sticky, and sugary foods will guarantee you're only introducing the most gentle and nutrient-rich ingredients into your mouth, letting your teeth and gums heal.

During the first few days of healing, your gums will continue to shrink as the swelling comes down. If the crown lengthening procedure was on a tooth in the back of your mouth, full recovery might take 6-12 weeks. You can expect the healing timeframe to be 3-6 months if the crown lengthening procedure occurred in the front of your mouth.

Are there possible complications?

The two main complications, bleeding and infection, can occur after any surgery. If you experience any symptoms beyond the expected, such as bleeding that doesn't stop, signs of infection, or pain that doesn't lessen, call your periodontist. Specific to crown lengthening surgery, you should watch for:

Sensitivity to hot and cold: This should go away with time or when your periodontist places the crown on your tooth.

Appearance: The affected tooth may look longer than the teeth next to it after the tissue and bone removal.

Looseness: It's a possibility that removing bone from around a tooth can make it feel looser

Regardless of the reason for you needing or wanting this procedure, maintaining a vigorous oral care routine before and after surgery is essential for the best possible outcome. You should brush your teeth twice a day and clean between your teeth with floss, a water flosser, or another interdental cleaning tool.

Everyone deserves a bright and healthy smile they're confident about. Whether your dental professional has told you that you'll need crown lengthening for a restorative dental procedure, or you personally feel it's a cosmetic surgery that will improve your smile, understanding the process is vital. Your dental professional can help you decide on the right course of treatment, so you feel confident showing off your healthy, gorgeous smile!

by Colgate

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Gum Surgery — What Do I Need To Know?

Your dentist has recommended that you see a periodontist, a dental specialist who treats periodontal disease. Periodontal disease is a bacterial infection that infects the gum tissue causing inflammation, redness, swelling and loss of bone around the teeth. It can affect one tooth or many.

The National Institute of Health reports that 80 percent of adults in the United States have some form of periodontal disease.

How did I get Periodontal Disease?Periodontal disease begins with bacteria present in the mouth attaching to the teeth. The bacteria collect and multiply, forming a biofilm called dental plaque. If this plaque is left on the teeth, the adjacent gingival tissues can become inflamed, resulting in the development of gingivitis, an early form of gum disease. 

Daily flossing and twice-daily brushing with a toothpaste that fights bacteria can help prevent gingivitis. Plaque and food debris are removed by oral hygiene practices and thus clean the surface of the teeth and eliminate bacterial plaque at the gum line of the teeth. [It needs to be clear from this section that gingivitis is an early form of gum disease that can lead to periodontitis, a serious form gum disease, if left untreated] However, if plaque and food debris are not removed and oral hygiene practices are not maintained, then gingivitis will get worse and the gum tissue can become more inflamed, bleeding can occur, the area between the tooth and gum tissue can become deepened to form a periodontal pocket and periodontal disease can develop.

A periodontal pocket develops as the plaque bacteria from the biofilm continues to accumulate and moves below the gum line. At this point, home care is not very effective in removing the dental plaque. If it is left untreated by the dentist or dental hygienist, the biofilm will continue to spread below the gum line and infect the inside of the pocket. The bacteria in the plaque produce by-products that cause the adjacent soft and hard tissue to degrade, forming a deeper pocket in the process.

This type of advanced periodontal disease can affect the roots of the teeth and they can become infected, too. The teeth may become loose or uncomfortable and the patient will require gum surgery. The patient would be required to have initial therapy to treat diseased periodontal pockets through scaling and root planning. The dental hygienist would utilize an ultrasonic scaling device to remove plaque, tartar and food debris below the gum line and would hand scale the tooth and root surface to make it smooth and disease free. Scaling and root planing can be completed in two to four sessions depending on how much oral disease the patient may have. Thorough oral hygiene procedures would be reviewed with the patient to improve oral care cleaning techniques at home.

Types of Gum Surgery

1. Gingival Flap Surgery – If pockets are greater than 5 millimeters in depth, the periodontist would conduct this procedure to reduce the periodontal pockets that were noted in a patients chart. Most patients who have been diagnosed with moderate to severe periodontitis would go through this procedure. The periodontist would cut the gum tissue to separate the gum tissue from the teeth, conduct a thorough deep cleaning with an ultrasonic scaling device as well as hand instruments to remove tartar, plaque and biofilm below the pockets.

2. Gingivectomy – This procedure is conducted to remove excess gum tissue that may be overgrown on the teeth to provide a better area to clean the teeth. The periodontist would numb the patients gum tissue and cut and eliminate the extra gum tissue in the mouth.

3. Gingivoplasty – This type of gum surgery is used to reshape healthy gum tissue around the teeth to make them look better. If a person has tooth recession where the gum is pushed away from the tooth, a gingivoplasty can be done. A gum graft can be done where the tissue is taken from the roof of the mouth (this is called a graft) and then stitched into place on either side of the tooth that is recessed.

After gum surgery, it is important that the periodontist or dental hygienist inform you how to clean the teeth and gum tissue with a toothbrush and an antimicrobial fluoride toothpaste, floss and antibacterial mouth rinse. Please consult your periodontal specialist or dentist for more information of how to care for your gum tissue and teeth after gum surgery.

by Colgate

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Complications of Neglecting Dental Hygiene

Eating and speaking are things people generally take for granted, but millions of Americans who don’t take proper care of their teeth can affect their ability to do both. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), over 26% of United States adults are dealing with untreated tooth decay, and nearly half (46%) of adults over 30 demonstrate signs of gum disease. 

Not only can the complications from poor dental hygiene lead to significant problems with your teeth, gums, and jaw, but they can cause issues that severely compromise your overall health. Let’s look at how neglecting your dental hygiene can affect your body and what you can do to improve your teeth.

Residents in Mamaroneck, New York, and Stamford, Connecticut, looking for relief from gum disease and tooth decay can get help from Dr. Gennadiy Kravets and the compassionate team at All Bright Dental. We provide comprehensive preventive, restorative, and cosmetic care for a wide variety of dental problems for patients of all ages.

Defining poor dental hygiene

The mouth is the starting point of the digestive system, an environment that contains many harmless bacteria to help in breaking down food particles. To keep harmful bacteria from collecting in your mouth, cleaning your teeth regularly by brushing and flossing helps to keep food particles and bad bacteria from collecting in between your teeth and gums. 

Neglecting this can cause infections in your teeth and gums that can lead to tooth decay, gum disease (periodontitis), tooth loss, dry mouth, mouth ulcers, and other problems that can create the climate for worsening dental health. 

How it can affect your body

Infections that affect your teeth and gums can spread to other parts of the body and create other significant complications, such as:

Endocarditis: bacteria in your mouth can get into your bloodstream and attach to areas of your heart

Cardiovascular disease: while the link isn’t entirely understood, research indicates the inflammation and infections in the mouth can lead to many types of heart disease

Birth complications: research also shows premature births and low birth weight are tied to gum disease in mothers

Pneumonia: bad mouth bacteria can be drawn into your lungs, putting you at risk of pneumonia

Conditions like diabetes, osteoporosis, and HIV/AIDS can affect your body’s defense against infection and bone loss, which can increase the risks of complications from dental problems.

Best habits for proper dental care

Daily habits to help maintain proper dental hygiene include:

Brushing twice daily

Brushing is one of the essential tools in protecting your teeth, so don’t rush through it. Also, remember to clean your tongue, either with your toothbrush or a tongue scraper.

Flossing daily

This is essential for cleaning particles and bacteria that can get trapped in areas your brush can’t reach, such as between your teeth. Use about 18 inches of floss and grip tightly between your thumb and forefingers. Gently guide the floss between teeth until it reaches the gum line, making a ‘C’ shape.

Using the right equipment

Be sure to use a soft bristle toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste to maximize the quality of each brushing, and be sure to replace your brush at least every three months.

Poor dental care can lead to many other health issues. If you take care of your teeth now, you can avoid these complications and keep your body healthier. Routine dental visits will help you gauge how well you’re caring for your teeth, so if you need to get a checkup or have dental concerns.

by All Bright Dental

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Five Steps to Good Oral Health

When it comes to a healthy mouth, start with the basics. These simple steps will help keep you healthy from head to toe.

Poor oral health can have a dramatic affect on our lives. Pain, infection and broken or missing teeth not only dictate our day-to-day ability to eat and function, but can also have a deep emotional effect. What’s more, dental researchers have gone a step further to discover that the bacteria that reside in our mouths can enter the bloodstream and may be linked to diabetes, heart disease and stroke as well as pre-term and low-birth-weight babies.

The Canadian Dental Association recommends these five steps to help reduce the risk of oral disease:

1. See Your Dentist Regularly

Every time you visit your dentist for a checkup and cleaning you’ll be thoroughly checked for any signs of oral disease.

2. Keep Your Mouth Clean

Brush your teeth and tongue at least twice a day and floss once a day. Use a fluoride toothpaste and a soft-bristle toothbrush and you’ll remove the plaque and bacteria that cause cavities and gum disease.

3. Follow a Healthy Diet

An overall healthy diet will definitely contribute to your oral health, but it’s especially important to limit how much sugar and acidic food you consume as they are the main causes of dental problems.

4. Check Your Mouth Regularly

According to the Canadian Dental Association, nine out of 10 Canadians will develop gum disease at some point in their lives. In-between visits to your dentist, check your mouth yourself for signs of gum disease such as red or sensitive gums, bleeding when you brush or floss, loose or sensitive teeth or a change in the appearance of your teeth and gums.

5. Avoid Tobacco Products


Cigarettes and chewing tobacco are dangerous to both your oral health and your overall health. Stained and missing teeth, infected gums and bad breath are just some of the problems they can cause, but mouth, tongue and lip cancer and heart disease are also related to tobacco consumption.

by Readers Digest Canada

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Can Smoking Increase Your Risk Of Cavities?

If you smoke cigarettes, use e-cigarettes, or other tobacco products, they can affect your oral health. Not only can smoking have adverse effects on your oral health, but it can also cause damage to your teeth and gums. At our Philadelphia dentist office, we offer a full range of treatment for patients with cavities, including dental fillings. Dr. Pamela Doray will perform a full evaluation to determine the most appropriate solution for your needs.

Smokers and e-cigarette users have a higher chance of developing severe oral health issues like cavities, gum disease, and infection. Being aware of the symptoms that you may experience is essential to improving your oral health.

Some common symptoms of cavities may include:

A toothache

Tooth sensitivity

Visible holes or pits in the teeth

Discolored teeth

Pain when chewing

Bad breath

Swelling in the gums


Cigarettes and e-cigarettes contain nicotine, which prevents the body from producing saliva. Reduced saliva flow can lead to dry mouth, increased risk of tooth decay, and bad breath. Tobacco and nicotine use can also increase your risk of gum tissue damage, receding gums, and gum disease. Patients who smoke have a more difficult time healing after gum disease treatment. Using cigarettes and e-cigarettes restricts blood flow to the gums and mouth, which increases your risk of infection, decay, inflammation, and other oral diseases.


Being aware of the risk associated with smoking and tobacco use is important. Undergoing routine dental visits and dental cleanings can help keep your teeth and gums healthy. It is also crucial that you maintain a proper oral hygiene routine to help reduce your risk of serious oral health issues.

by Pamela Doray DMD

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What is gingival hyperplasia?

Gingival hyperplasia is an overgrowth of gum tissue around the teeth. There are a number of causes for this condition, but it’s often a symptom of poor oral hygiene or a side effect of using certain medications.

If left untreated, this oral condition can affect the alignment of your teeth and increase the risk of developing gum disease. Gingival hyperplasia can be resolved by improving oral hygiene habits. In more severe cases, surgical treatment is necessary.

Gingival hyperplasia is also referred to as:

gingival overgrowth

gum enlargement


hypertrophic gingivitis

Gingival hyperplasia symptoms

Gingival hyperplasia can be painful and can affect your oral health. One of the more common characteristics of this condition is having red, bleeding gums.

Other symptoms associated with gum overgrowth include:

tender gums



bad breath

plaque buildup on teeth

In more severe cases, the gums can completely cover the teeth, affecting hygiene and teeth alignment. If your teeth are covered, they will be difficult to clean. This could increase your risk of developing gum disease. If you develop gingival overgrowth at a younger age, it could affect tooth eruption or the process where your teeth grow in and become visible.

3 Causes of gingival hyperplasia

Gingival (gum) overgrowth is often caused by inflammation. It can also be drug-induced, as a side effect of prescribed medications. Common medications that can cause this overgrowth include:

antiseizure drugs


calcium channel blockers, or drugs used to treat high blood pressure and other heart-related conditions

This condition often resolves once a person stops taking the prescribed medication.

Other causes can be categorized into groups: inflammatory gum enlargement, systemic causes, and hereditary gingival fibromatosis.

1. Inflammatory gum enlargement

Gingival hyperplasia can occur as a direct result of inflammation. The inflammation is often caused by plaque buildup on the teeth from food, bacteria, and poor hygiene practices.

The inflammation can make the gums tender and red, and it can trigger bleeding. Proper hygiene techniques, such as daily flossing and effective brushing, can improve this condition.

2. Systemic causes

Other causes of gingival hyperplasia are more physiologic. Pregnancy, hormonal imbalances, and some diseases such as leukemia can trigger gum overgrowth. Other diseases or conditions that could cause gum overgrowth include:




Crohn’s disease


vitamin deficiencies

The condition usually improves once the underlying cause has been treated. In the case of pregnancy, gum enlargement improves once the baby has been delivered.

Proper oral hygiene can improve symptoms and reduce the risk of developing this condition.

3. Hereditary gingival fibromatosis

Hereditary gingival fibromatosis (HGF) is a rare oral condition that causes slow, progressive gum enlargement. It often begins in childhood, but it may not be noticeable until adulthood.

The gingival overgrowth from this condition is caused by an overproduction of collagen. In some cases of this condition, the gums will cover major parts of the tooth surfaces or cover them completely.

Treating gingival overgrowth

Treating gingival hyperplasia often depends on the underlying cause. In many cases, improved oral hygiene can prevent or improve symptoms and resolve this condition. However, if gum overgrowth is a product of medication or disease, doctors may recommend surgery.

Gingival hyperplasia can be a recurrent condition despite improvements in oral hygiene, professional treatment, and drug substitutions. In such cases, overgrown gums may need to be surgically removed. Periodontists can perform this surgery with a scalpel or laser.

Some procedures used to remove overgrown gums include:

Laser excision. A periodontist will use lasers to remove inflamed gum tissue. Once the gums are removed, the periodontist will scrape any plaque buildup around the roots of your teeth.

Electrosurgery. In electrosurgery, your periodontist applies electric currents to your gum tissue to cut or remove what has overgrown.

Periodontal flap surgery. This procedure separates the gums from the teeth. The gums are folded back temporarily to allow the periodontist access to remove inflamed tissue and clean any plaque or tartar.

Gingivectomy. A gingivectomy removes a portion of your gums from around your teeth. A periodontist will trim and remove diseased gums, and then repair your remaining gums with stitches.




Gingival hyperplasia is an oral condition that causes your gums to overgrow. In more severe cases, your gums can completely cover your teeth, making it difficult to maintain effective oral hygiene habits. Improved oral hygiene can often resolve this condition and improve symptoms. In other cases, treatment depends on the underlying cause.

If you’re experiencing irregular symptoms or if you’re worried about your oral health, make an appointment to see your local dentist. 

by healthline

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What Is Trench Mouth?

One of the most serious and painful types of gum disease is called trench mouth. According to Healthline, the name dates back to World War I, the first war in which soldiers experienced prolonged periods of trench warfare. Because they were under significant stress and did not have time to take care of their teeth or seek treatment, they often developed painful and bleeding gums.

Who Is Affected By This Condition?

Trench mouth can affect anyone who does not practice proper mouth care, or who cannot or does not access regular dental cleaning, though it is quite rare in nations with modern healthcare. It is still sometimes observed in younger males, possibly due to the reluctance to seek treatment until it becomes very painful. Other factors include a poor diet and a lack of knowledge about oral hygiene.

What Additional Factors Put a Person at Risk for Trench Mouth?

The disease can be caused or exacerbated by factors such as a compromised immune system, a history of smoking, infections in the mouth or existing health conditions like diabetes or HIV/AIDS. A history of gingivitis (gum disease), especially in combination with poor oral hygiene and missed dental appointments, can greatly increase the chances of developing this condition. Inadequate nutrition and diet choices can also be contributing factors.

What Are the Symptoms of Trench Mouth and How Is It Diagnosed?

Patients may experience a combination of several different symptoms, says The New York Times.

Bleeding gums and pain caused by touching or brushing the teeth

A metallic taste or smell coming from the mouth

An increase in swelling of the gums

Flu-like symptoms, including fatigue and fever

A simple oral exam by a dentist is enough for a diagnosis with the above symptoms, and the condition can be initially treated with a cleaning of the gums and teeth by a dental hygienist.

To decrease infection, a dentist may prescribe antibiotics, along with an antibacterial rinse. The rinse can also be used by the dental hygienist during the cleaning to help relieve the pain caused by the infected gums.

Once the patient is relieved of the symptoms of this painful condition, regular visits to a dentist and dental hygienist will help prevent it from occuring again, and ensure a lifetime of healthy gums.

by Colgate

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Seven Daily Ways to Protect Your Teeth

Some say the eyes are the window to the soul. But if you really want to know what someone’s about, check their smile. A welcoming show of pearly whites makes a great first impression, while a tight-lipped smile or whiff of bad breath does the opposite.

Read on for tips on how to make sure you’re giving your teeth the care they deserve.

1. Brush two times a day for two minutes

Brush your teeth for two minutes, twice a day, says the American Dental Association (ADA). This will keep your teeth in top form. Brushing your teeth and tongue with a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste cleans food and bacteria from your mouth. Brushing also washes out particles that eat away at your teeth and cause cavities.

2. A morning brush fights morning breath

The mouth is 98.6ºF (37ºC). Warm and wet, it’s filled with food particles and bacteria. These lead to deposits called plaque. When it builds up, it calcifies, or hardens, on your teeth to form tartar, also called calculus. Not only does tartar irritate your gums, it can lead to gum disease as well as cause bad breath.

Be sure to brush in the morning to help get rid of the plaque that’s built up overnight.

3. Don’t overbrush

If you brush more than twice a day, for longer than four minutes total, you could wear down the enamel layer that protects your teeth.

When tooth enamel isn’t there, it exposes a layer of dentin. Dentin has tiny holes that lead to nerve endings. When these are triggered, you might feel all sorts of pain. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, almost 20 percentTrusted Source of American adults have experienced pain and sensitivity in their teeth.


4. Don’t turbocharge

It’s also possible to brush too hard. Brush your teeth like you’re polishing an eggshell. If your toothbrush looks like someone sat on it, you’re applying too much pressure.

Enamel is strong enough to protect teeth from everything that goes on inside your mouth, from eating and drinking to beginning the digestive process. Children and teens have softer enamel than adults, leaving their teeth more prone to cavities and erosion from food and drink.

5. Make sure you floss every day

Want to avoid minimal scraping at your next checkup? Flossing loosens the particles that brushing misses. It also removes plaque, and in so doing prevents the buildup of tartar. While it’s easy to brush plaque away, you need a dentist to remove tartar.

6. It doesn’t matter when you do it

You finally have an answer to the age-old question: “Which comes first, flossing or brushing?” It doesn’t matter, according to the ADA, as long as you do it every day.

7. Stay away from soda

“Sip All Day, Get Decay” is a campaign from the Minnesota Dental Association to warn people of the dangers of soft drinks. It’s not just sugar soda, but diet soda, too, that harms teeth. The acid in soda attacks teeth. Once acid eats away at enamel, it goes on to create cavities, leaves stains on the tooth surface, and erodes the inside structure of the tooth. To avoid drinking-related tooth decay, limit soft drinks and take good care of your teeth.


by healthline

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