While dental professionals have stressed the importance of flossing to patients for years, according to a survey by the American Dental Association, only four in every 10 individuals floss at least once a day and approximately 20% said they never floss. Regardless of your excuses, flossing offers numerous benefits and is essential for your overall oral health. Here are four reasons you should never skip flossing.
Decreases Bad Breath
Bad breath can be embarrassing. It has many causes but is often produced from food and bacteria in your mouth and teeth. Flossing helps decrease and remove that bacteria in your mouth, which not only prevents gum disease and keeps your teeth healthy, but removes a common culprit to bad breath.
You Become More Susceptible to Gum Disease
While you may not worry about gum disease, more than 47% of adults over the age of 30 years old have some form of the disease. Gum disease is the result of poor oral hygiene. It occurs when plaque and bacteria are left on the teeth for long periods of time and cause cavities and gum irritation. By flossing, you remove the bacteria in hard-to-reach spaces, decreasing your risk of the disease.
It Helps Prevent Heart Disease
There is a connection between gum disease and heart disease. Some research shows that the bacteria in your mouth that causes gum disease can actually enter your bloodstream and travel to the heart, which can trigger a heart attack. While the research isn’t completely conclusive, most experts agree that flossing and strong oral hygiene is vital if you have a high risk of heart disease and heart attacks.
Your Gums Bleed Less
A common excuse for many individuals is that flossing causes bleeding gums. However, what they don’t realize is that when flossing regularly, the bleeding is reduced. The bleeding occurs because of the bacteria located near the gums. When you floss regularly, there is less bacteria build-up in these areas, meaning you are less likely to bleed.
If you are one of the many individuals who does not include flossing in their regular oral routine, use these following tips:
• Keep floss next to your toothbrush so you don’t forget each time you brush your teeth.
• Purchase and use the right type of floss for your teeth.
• Consider picks instead of traditional floss.
If you have any questions about flossing or need a little help with your technique, ask your dentist. They can provide, tips, guidance, and advice to help you never skip a day of flossing.
Bad breath not only pushes others away from you and can hurt your social life, it can make you feel self-conscious and be a warning sign for a serious oral health condition. If you do suffer from persistent bad breath, here are five tips that may help.
1. Brush Your Tongue Well
While you may brush and scrub your teeth exceptionally well, you cannot forget about your tongue. Millions of bacteria can live on your tongue and they can have a strong, poor odour. Each time you brush your teeth, make sure to thoroughly scrub your tongue. Some toothbrushes even feature tongue scrappers or you can use a specific tongue scraping tool to make sure the job is done well.
2. Drink Plenty of Water
It is no secret that water offers many benefits to your entire body, but it can also improve your bad breath. When you don’t drink enough water, you have less saliva and the odours inside your mouth are more concentrated. By drinking your recommended amount of water each day, you increase your saliva flow and the odours don’t dwell as long in your mouth, improving your breath.
3. Replace Your Toothbrush Regularly
Replace your toothbrush every three to four months to ensure maximum cleaning in your mouth. Over time, the bristles on your toothbrush will wear down and will not effectively remove the bacteria and tartar on your teeth. These bacteria not only cause cavities and other dental health issues, but can be the cause of bad breath. Additionally, if you notice the bristles on your toothbrush are beginning to fall apart or fray, replace the toothbrush even if it is not three or four months since your last toothbrush.
4. Watch What You Eat
One of the biggest reasons for bad breath is an individual’s diet. There are certain foods, such as garlic, that enters your bloodstream and makes its way into your lungs. When you breathe, the odour from the food escapes with the breath from your lungs. While there is no way to avoid this, you must be cautious about what you eat and when you eat it. In some situations, consider chewing on a stick of gum to help decrease the odour.
5. Visit the Dentist Regularly
If you have persistent bad breath and nothing seems to decrease the odour, it may be the sign of a serious health condition such as gum disease. During regular dental exams, the dentist will examine your teeth for any health concerns or potential health issues. If these issues are caught
early, you can begin treatment to help decrease the bad breath. Bad breath can be embarrassing and frustrating. However, by being diligent with your dental hygiene, visiting the dentist regularly, and eating a healthy diet, you can stop bad breath before it gets out of control.
The choice to use a pacifier is a decision that every parent must make. These small items can act as a soothing device, helping little ones handle stressful situations, decrease crying, and even improve bedtime and nap-time routines. However, many parents are hesitant to use a pacifier as they can be known to harm baby’s teeth. But are they actually harmful and should parents avoid them?
Can Pacifiers Damage a Child’s Teeth?
Long-term pacifier use has been known to cause damage to a child’s teeth. However, for damage to occur, the child typically needs to use the pacifier extensively and be an aggressive sucker. This is because sucking hard and for long periods of time can change the roof of a child’s mouth and affect the mouth’s growth. According to the American Dental Association, if a child is an aggressive sucker, whether with the pacifier or the thumb, there will be more dental issues than if the child just likes to keep the item in his or her mouth for soothing purposes.
When Should a Child Stop Using a Pacifier?
The right age for children to stop using a pacifier is a controversial topic. There are many benefits to using a pacifier including that it lowers the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, but it can have many negative effects when a child begins talking. For example, if a child is learning to speak, a pacifier makes the child hold his or her mouth unnaturally, making it more difficult for him to properly develop mouth muscles to form sounds. Most experts recommend that a child stop using a pacifier between the ages of two to four years old, if not earlier. If a child is beginning to show less interest in the pacifier, it may be wise for parents to begin weaning him off as soon as possible. Using a pacifier can be an extremely difficult habit to break and living without it is not only hard on the child, but for an entire family.
Tips for Breaking the Pacifier Habit
To help wean your child off the pacifier, here are a few tips.
• At first, only let your child us the pacifier at nap-time and bedtime. Then, gradually move to just bedtime.
• Gradually make the pacifier smaller. Each day, cut a small piece off the pacifier. Over time, they’ll have nothing left to suck on and won’t want it anymore.
• Help your child give the pacifier away or trade it in for a new toy or stuffed animal.
• Just take it away. You may have a few difficult days but your child will eventually forget about it.
If you have questions regarding your child’s pacifier use or need additional help breaking the habit, talk to your paediatric dentist for guidance.
Caring for your teeth is more than just regular brushing and flossing. Many of the things you do every single day can affect and damage your teeth. Here are five everyday habits that may actually be hurting your teeth.
Chewing on Ice Cubes
On hot summer days, there is nothing better than gnawing on some ice but your teeth don’t like it. Ice is an extremely hard substance that when biting down on it, can crack or chip your tooth. Constant chewing on hard substances can also wear down your enamel, making you more prone to cavities.
Biting Your Nails
When many individuals are nervous, they bite their nails. While this is not only a terrible habit that damages your nails, you also increase the chance of chipping a tooth. Additionally, if you are a constant nail-biter, you can hurt your jaw by keeping it in the same position for long lengths of time and putting significant amounts of pressure on it.
How You Brush
How you brush your teeth can impact the health of your teeth. Hard and rough brushing can damage your enamel and wear it down faster, making your teeth more prone to cavities. You can also hurt your gums and other areas in your mouth. In addition, you also don’t want to use a toothbrush that has hard and rough bristles. This can also hurt your enamel even without fast and hard brushing.
Using Teeth as Scissors
You may be guilty of using your teeth to tear open a package or tear off a clothing tag rather than reach for the scissors. When doing this, you greatly increase the risk of chipping or cracking a tooth. Many items that you place in your mouth aren’t meant to be chewed on or will come apart easily with your teeth. You may bite too hard, damaging your teeth.
Eating or Drinking a High-Sugar Diet
Eating or drinking too much sugar can wreak serious havoc on your teeth. When you ingest a large amount of sugar, much of that sugar stays in your mouth. The bacteria in your mouth then turns that sugar into an acid. That acid lingers on your teeth until you brush it away. Acid is extremely destructive and eats away your teeth’s enamel, creating cavities. Taking proper care of your teeth is not only essential to your oral hygiene but your overall health. Avoid the above five habits to keep your teeth and your body a little healthier.
Regularly brushing and flossing your teeth are excellent barriers against cavities and plaque build-up but there is more you can do to keep cavities away. Fluoride is a mineral that helps to harden the enamel on your teeth, making it difficult for cavities to form. Here are five things
about fluoride that you may not know.
Fluoride Occurs Naturally
Fluoride is a mineral that occurs naturally. It can be found in certain foods and is frequently added to drinking water.
There are Several Ways to Receive Fluoride
In many communities, fluoride is easily accessible. It is found in 75% of the U.S. population’s drinking water. Some research shows that communities with fluoride in their water have drastically decreased the number of cavities in both adults and children. In addition to finding fluoride in your drinking water, it is also in a variety of toothpaste products. You can also receive fluoride treatments from the dentist during your six-month
You Don’t Need Substantial Amounts of Fluoride
While fluoride certainly has its benefits, individuals do not need to go out of their way to receive it. If your drinking water contains fluoride, and you use a toothpaste with fluoride in it, adults are generally receiving a sufficient amount for adult teeth. However, if you don’t have fluoride in your water, you may need help from additional products. There are certain toothpaste products, mouthwash, and tablets you and your children can use to ensure you receive the recommended amount of fluoride to properly protect your teeth.
It is a Safe Option for All Ages
Fluoride offers benefits for both adult and children’s teeth. Even toddlers can receive fluoride varnishes and treatments when they visit the dentist. It has also been endorsed by numerous organizations including the American Dental Association, Centres for Disease Control and
Prevention, and the American Academy of Paediatrics.
Fluoride is a Controversial Topic
Not every dental professional agrees that fluoride is good for your teeth. There is some research that shows that fluoride can actually change your enamel. It also affects other tissues and parts in your body. Many also argue that there is no solid evidence that using fluoride regularly benefits you more than not using it. If you have questions regarding the dangers of fluoride, speak with dental professionals for more information. While there are some that may disagree, the research is available that shows the benefits of fluoride. Talk to your dentist to determine if additional steps are necessary for you to receive the recommended amount of fluoride each day.
There is a lot of information and varying opinions regarding when you should take your child to his first dentist appointment. Some individuals say to take the child as soon as the first tooth appears while others say to wait until the child is a little older and can follow the dentist’s instructions. Here is what many experts suggest.
When Is the Right Age?
According to the American Academy of Paediatric Dentistry, your child should see the dentist for the first time shortly after his or her first tooth appears. This means your child should have seen the dentist at least once before he or she turns one. At this appointment, the dentist can then determine when he would like to see the child again. If there are any concerns, the dentist may want to see the child within six months. If not, they may want to wait until the child is a little older. The purpose of your child’s first checkup is not to give the teeth a thorough cleaning. This appointment is to begin familiarizing your child to the dentist, dental procedures, and even the environment of the dental office. In fact, many thorough cleanings won’t even begin until the child is three years old or even a little older depending on how cooperative they are with the dentist and can have an X-ray.
What Type of Dentist Should I Look for?
When you have young children, you should consider taking them to a paediatric dentist. A paediatric dentist is different than a family dentist because they have received several years of additional training to learn how to properly treat children’s teeth. Additionally, many parents prefer to take their child to a paediatric dentist because they have more experience working with kids who may be scared and nervous. Paediatric dental offices are also designed for kids, helping them feel calmer for the appointment.
Tips to Prepare Kids for the Dentist
Visiting the dentist, particularly during the first several visits, can make children extremely uncomfortable and upset. As a parent, you can prepare your child for this new experience before even setting foot in the dentist office. A few ideas include:
• Talk about the dentist at home, but only speak of her in a positive light.
• Play dentist. Take turns being the dentist and working on one another’s teeth. You can also practice on dolls or other toys if they are available.
• Go early to the dentist. Let your child become comfortable in the dentist office before it is their turn for the appointment.
• Don’t set your expectations too high. There will most likely be tears and lots of screaming. Don’t expect perfection during the very first appointment.
Your children’s oral health is just as important as caring for other parts of their body. By visiting a paediatric dentist at a young age, you are helping your child establish strong health habits that will affect him throughout his entire life.
Your smile is one of your best features and it is important that you keep your teeth healthy and beautiful. Not all toothpaste is made the same, and the product you choose can make all the difference in the health and protection of your teeth. Here are a few tips to help you choose the right toothpaste for your mouth.
Consider Your Teeth
What oral issues do you frequently face? Are you prone to cavities? Are your teeth extremely sensitive? Do your teeth turn yellow very easily? Think about your teeth’s specific needs and find toothpaste that focuses on those needs. For example, if you constantly have cavities each time you go to the dentist, you should consider toothpaste with extra cavity protection.
Toothpaste With or Without Fluoride?
Most toothpaste contains small amounts of fluoride. While fluoride has many benefits and protects your teeth, if swallowed, individuals can have severe reactions due to its toxicity. If you aren’t concerned about yourself or family members swallowing fluoride, it is highly recommended to use toothpaste with fluoride. However, if you have young children who may swallow their toothpaste, you may want to consider a toothpaste that does not contain fluoride. This product generally provides plenty of protection for teeth but is made with safer ingredients.
Be Careful if You Have Sensitive Teeth
If you have sensitive teeth, you must be more careful in the toothpaste you purchase, particularly if you are considering teeth whitening toothpaste. Unfortunately, if you have sensitive teeth, some toothpaste can make your condition worse. You should talk to a dentist and ask for recommendations based on your specific needs.
Talk to your Dentist
One of the best ways to determine what toothpaste is right for you is to talk to your dentist. Your dentist can evaluate your needs and provide suggestions based on your teeth. In addition, prescription toothpaste may be worth considering. This type of product is ideal if you have severe oral issues or have extremely sensitive teeth. If you have many oral hygiene issues, the toothpaste you purchase at the store may not cut it and many not provide the protection you need. Keep in mind, you may have to pay a little more for prescription toothpaste but it will protect your teeth in the long run and save you much dental work. There are many toothpaste options on the market today and it can be hard to decipher which one is best and which one will provide the right amount of protection for your teeth. Use these tips to help you choose the right toothpaste for you and for your entire family.
To maintain your beautiful smile, you must take care of your teeth. While brushing and flossing protects your pearly whites from cavities, a mouth guard can protect it from serious dental injuries. A mouth guard is a small device that you place in your mouth to protect various areas in the mouth. It not only guards your teeth, but also the jaw, tongue, and cheeks. These mouth protectors are typically made of plastic and laminate and are most often worn during contact sports such as hockey, basketball, football, and baseball.
Teens are More Susceptible to Oral Injuries
While mouth guards may be an excellent safety precaution for individuals of all ages, teenagers have a substantially higher risk for an oral injury while playing various contact sports and have a greater need for mouth protection. One study by the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry looked at the various injuries teenagers experienced when playing various sports. The study found that 75% of teenage athletes suffered some type of oral trauma while playing sports – particularly basketball, baseball, and football. The study found that the most common injuries that occurred were lost teeth, teeth that were moved in the mouth but still attached, fractured teeth, and severe cuts in the mouth.
It May Help Prevent Concussions
In addition to simply protecting your teeth and other areas of your mouth, there is some research, and many experts claim that individuals who wear a mouth guard during sporting activities lessen their chance of a concussion. This is because the cushion of the mouth guard creates a type of padding which lessens the blow to the brain. Unfortunately, this hasn’t been consistently confirmed but there is ample evidence to prove so.
Key is Proper Fitting Mouth Guard
If individuals want the benefits of a mouth guard, it is essential the device fits the individual’s mouth and fits it well. The guard should be tight-fitting and should not move around when in the mouth. The wearer of the mouth guard should not have to clench his or her teeth to keep the device in place either. There are several types of mouth guards available. A common mouth guard is a boil and bite guard. With this type of device, the guard is boiled and becomes very malleable. You then bite it and mold it to the wearer’s teeth while it is still hot. While the boil and bite mouth guards are extremely common, a custom-fit mouth protector is ideal. Before choosing just any mouth guard, you should discuss the various options with your dentist and be professionally fitted for the device. The custom-fit guard will ensure it fits the wearer correctly, is durable, and provides the essential protection he or she needs for certain sports and other activities. This option may be more expensive than others but it will provide the best overall protection. While mouth guards are small devices, they can make all the difference between suffering large dental injuries or experiencing something minor. Reach out to your dentist for more information on mouth protectors and for answers to many questions you may have.
A beautiful, pearly white smile is a goal for most individuals. However, maintaining white teeth is no easy task. Over time, your teeth begin to lose their white colour. A variety of foods and beverages may stain them, and a lack of oral care can break down and destroy your enamel, causing teeth to become yellow. If you want that sought-after white smile, here are a few tips to properly whiten your teeth.
Eat A Balanced Diet
Eating healthy does more than just give your body energy to function each day, it can help your teeth stay strong and look their best. Additionally, when you eat certain types of crunchy fruits and vegetables, it can help remove plaque buildup on your teeth, which also creates yellow-appearing teeth. While eating more fruits and vegetables isn’t the only method you should use if you want to whiten teeth, it is a great starting point. Also, be mindful of the types of foods you do eat, as dark beverages and some foods can cause discolouration.
Use Teeth Whitening Toothpaste
Teeth whitening toothpaste is an excellent way to restore your white smile without hurting your budget. However, this option can take some time and you won’t see drastic changes overnight. There are also numerous options available, so you can choose the best toothpaste to help you whiten and clean your teeth.
Talk to a Professional
If you want to ensure a long-lasting whitening method that does not damage your teeth, consider treatment from a dentist. A dentist can offer several whitening methods including teeth whitening gel, laser treatment, and bleaching products. Additionally, not all individuals should consider teeth whitening treatment. There are some risks involved, particularly for those with gum disease or extreme sensitivity. In addition, be aware that these methods will cost you significantly more than others.
Use Baking Soda and Hydrogen Peroxide
Baking soda and hydrogen peroxide are two ingredients that can help you whiten teeth naturally. By combining the two ingredients with one part baking soda and two parts hydrogen peroxide, you create a paste. Put the paste on your teeth and brush your teeth like you would with regular toothpaste. Then, let it sit for at least one minute on your teeth. The paste will not only clean your teeth, but it will help remove stains and create a whiter smile. Make sure you rinse your teeth well after using the paste and do not use this method every day. These ingredients can damage your enamel if used in excess, making you even more susceptible to cavities. While there are many methods to whiten your teeth, you need to determine how much time, effort, and money you are willing to spend to get that perfect white smile. It is also wise to speak with a dentist before you choose any treatment to ensure you don’t damage your teeth and destroy your enamel.
The foods you eat do more than just provide fuel and energy for your body. They can affect all aspects of your health, including your teeth. There are certain foods that can cause more tartar and plaque build-up than others. They can also break down enamel or even increase the risk of chipping a tooth. Here are six foods that you should avoid — or at least limit — to keep your teeth healthy.
While citrus provides many essential nutrients to stay healthy and fight illnesses, too much of it is a bad thing. Eating citrus foods can break down the enamel on your teeth, making your more susceptible to cavities and sensitivity.
The media has discussed carbonated drinks extensively, due to their poor effects on health. But in addition to what it does to the inside of your body, it has many effects on your teeth. Not only do darker sodas stain teeth, they also coat your teeth with acid, damaging your teeth’s
Foods that are sticky — dried fruits, fruit snacks, or certain types of candy — should all be avoided or severely limited if you want to keep your teeth healthy. Sticky foods are usually high in sugar. While brushing your teeth can get rid of much of that sugar that is lingering on your teeth, unfortunately, sticky substances find their way into holes and crevices, where it is difficult for a toothbrush to reach.
Pickles are a favourite food among many individuals but eating too many can cause serious havoc on your teeth. Pickles contain exceptionally high amounts of vinegar. This acid poses a serious risk to your enamel and too much of it can break enamel down quickly. If you love pickles, try to limit your intake and be sure to drink lots of water after eating them. If possible, brush your teeth immediately after eating this popular food item.
Many individuals don’t even think twice about popping an ice cube in their mouth. After all, ice has zero calories and helps to keep your body hydrated. However, it can seriously damage your teeth. Ice is extremely hard and can easily crack, chip, or break a tooth. You may want to keep
your dentist’s number handy if you have a habit of regularly munching on this item.
Popcorn is another favourite food but can quickly chip or crack a tooth. Those hard popcorn kernels should never be placed in your mouth as they are too hard to munch on. Additionally, if popcorn ever becomes stuck in between your teeth, you should always make sure to floss shortly after eating a bowl of it. The bacteria left behind can cause cavities and when kernels are stuck between your teeth, your toothbrush is not likely to reach there.
While proper oral care, such as brushing, flossing, and regularly visiting the dentist are essential to your teeth’s health, it is also vital that you monitor what foods you place in your mouth. Be sure to regularly visit a dentist for an extensive cleaning and to keep your teeth healthy and strong.