Q. HOW TO PREVENT CAVITIES?
ONE CAN PREVENT CAVITIES BY FOLLOWING FIVE EASY STEPS
Did you know that cavities rank second in the list of most prevalent diseases in the US? And if you were to think a disease this commonplace must be particularly difficult to shield from, you'd be wrong. Here's how you can keep clear of cavities in five simple steps:
BRUSH TWICE A DAY WITH FLUORIDE TOOTHPASTE
Brushing the first thing in the morning and at night before going to bed is the first step towards keeping tooth decay at bay. If your routine permits, brush after each meal too; this will help keep bad breath from developing. In addition, make sure the toothpaste you use is fluoride based. Fluoride helps form dental enamel as well as bones and prevents cavities.
DON'T FORGET TO FLOSS
Removing the debris of what you eat, from between your teeth, is vital. Un-removed debris causes bad breath as well as cavities, and must be removed daily. Flossing daily is a common way to help prevent cavities, but you can also use a wide variety of inter-dental cleaners available today.
USE OF MOUTHWASH AND SUGARLESS CHEWING GUM
Many over-the-counter mouthwashes like Listerine have been clinically proven to aid cavity prevention. These antimicrobial mouthwashes reduce plaque and prevent decay. Rinse your mouth daily after you brush or after you eat to avoid cavity.
Believe it or not, chewing sugarless gums are also helpful in keeping cavities away. Approved by the American Dental Association in 2007, Orbit, Extra, and Eclipse chewing gums from Wrigley help fight cavities by increasing saliva flow in your mouth. Other chewing gums which carry ADA's seal of acceptance are good too.
The condition of your dental health can be set right with a healthy diet. Try and cut the intake of sugary drinks and empty carbohydrates like candies and chips. Include apples, pears, salmon, green vegetables, and foods rich in vitamin A which promote good oral health. In addition, be sure to brush immediately after consuming sticky food which might stain the teeth.
VISIT YOUR DENTIST REGULARLY
Regular visits to your dentists will help you have your dental health professionally examined. Your dentist will be able to guide you on the proper methods of brushing and flossing, as well as explain what food and drinks must be avoided. You can also have dental sealants placed to shield the biting surfaces of back teeth from harmful bacteria and plaque.
Q. HOW AGE AFFECT ORAL HEALTH?
Oral care is important as you grow older. Keeping your mouth healthy as you age will enable you to retain your ability to consume various kinds of food, helping you maintain a balanced diet throughout your life while also promoting good health. As a result, it is important to undergo routine dental check ups every six months.
COMMON ORAL PROBLEMS AS YOU AGE
One of the most common oral problems people experience as they age includes dry mouth. Dry mouth is caused by lack of salivary flow in the mouth. This reduces the cleansing and other protective functions performed by the saliva. According to the ADA (American Dental Association) as many as 25 million residents in the US suffer from dry mouth. Patients suffering from dry mouth generally feel as though they lack moisture inside their mouth and may have trouble chewing, tasting, swallowing, and speaking. It is also accompanied by cracked lips or a burning sensation.
Dry mouth may also lead to several other dental complications because the saliva plays an important role in rinsing and neutralizing the bacteria inside your mouth. If you have a dry mouth, your chances at contracting tooth decay and other dental infections increase drastically. As a result, it is important to remain cautious about your dental health as you age.
Q. HOW PREGNANCY AND ORAL HEALTH ARE RELATED?
Pregnancy is probably one of the most joyous and exciting times for a woman. However, a pregnant woman undergoes numerous hormonal changes that can have many adverse effects. These hormonal changes increase the chance of gum disease. This can be dangerous as gum disease can affect the growing fetus and negatively impact the development of the baby. This is why proper dental care is absolutely essential for pregnant women.
Good oral health is essential for the overall health of both the mother as well as the growing fetus. However, very few women visit their dentists regularly when they are pregnant. Shockingly, the numbers are as low as 20% to 30% of expectant mothers. Proper dental care during pregnancy can prevent conditions like pregnancy gingivitis and ensure that the baby's Development is not affected adversely due to dental issues. Gingivitis is among the most common oral disease that has been observed in pregnant women. Studies suggest that as many as 30% of the pregnancies often lead to gingivitis. This can be easily treated with at least one visit to the dentist during pregnancy.
However, dental procedures should be avoided during the first and second trimesters. Pregnant women can undergo dental procedures if they are in the third trimester. Also, morning sickness and cravings during pregnancy can be harmful to the teeth and gums of pregnant women. Women often crave sugary and unhealthy foods during their pregnancies and this can accelerate the formation of cavities. This is why pregnant women should go for regular check-ups to the dentist to tackle the formation of cavities.
Q. WHAT IS COSMETIC DENTISTRY?
Cosmetic dentistry has become very popular in recent times. People choose to undergo these procedures for a variety of reasons. For some, it is a way to just look better, while for others it is a health necessity. Apart from looks, cosmetic dentistry can also improve speech and bite strength among others. Whatever the reason for undergoing these procedures, it helps to know what you can expect from them. It is vital that you know how much these procedures cost and what you stand to gain from them beforehand. Also keep in mind that a lot of these cosmetic dentistry procedures are temporary and your problems can recur. Following are some of the most common procedures:
BONDING: If you have excess space between your teeth or they are chipped, cracked, or broken, bonding can improve them. The procedure is pretty simple and takes very little time – most of the time just a single sitting with your dentist. Tooth-colored bonding materials and composite resins are usually made use of. Bonding can last for years but you should know that this type of restoration is more prone to staining and chipping.
CROWNS: These completely cover misshapen teeth restoring their normal shape and function. They are usually made of ceramic, resin, metal, or porcelain materials. These are more expensive than most tooth restoration techniques and are usually prescribed by dentists as the last resort. They take more than one setting to complete. If you take good care of them, permanent crowns can last for a very long time.
ENAMEL CONTOURING AND SHAPING: This is usually performed if you have healthy teeth that look awkward. The process is usually combined with bonding to correct overlapped or crooked teeth, irregular or chipped teeth, and minor bite issues.
IMPLANTS: Dental implants, though expensive, are a permanent solution for missing teeth. A dental professional would surgically implant these to your jaw bone. This is a rather lengthy process which involves several diagnostic tests, taking the impression of your jaws, creating dentures and so on.
There are also several other common cosmetic dentistry procedures such as bracing, whitening of teeth, correction of uneven gum line, lengthening or shortening of teeth, covering exposed roots, and correction of indentations in jaw bone or gums. The important thing is to sit with your dentist, explain your problems, and seek solutions that suit you the best. Never forget to ask about the limitations of the procedure and get a realistic idea of what you can expect out of them to avoid disappointment later.
Q. WHAT IS BRUXISM?
ONE CAN PREVENT CAVITIES BY FOLLOWING FIVE EASY STEPS
When you are under stress, it is common to experience headaches, racing heart, or feeling of being on the edge. But did you know that it can also make you grind your teeth? This clenching or grinding of the teeth is called bruxism, which can lead to several health issues if not treated adequately. Bruxism is an unconscious act of grinding the teeth, most commonly during the nighttime and is seen in people of all ages including children of very young age. It can lead to a painful condition called temporomandibular joint disorder.
Since bruxism is widely prevalent in kids, most parents mistake normal clenching of teeth to stress. Parents must know that bruxism is not always a sign that your child is under stress. However, you must give teeth grinding due importance if you observe it on a continuous basis over a period of time. The causes of bruxism are many and range from misaligned teeth to allergies. It becomes a problem only when you see: Wearing of Teeth. Facial Muscle Spasm and Tension. Excess Stress on the Jaw Joint.
COPING WITH TEETH GRINDING DUE TO STRESS
If you have come to the conclusion with the help of a dentist that the primary cause of your teeth grinding is stress, consider seeking professional treatment. Along with this, you must also start exercising as it is known to reduce stress and release endorphins or "happy hormones" in your brain, which act to counter stress. If your bruxism is related to a sleep disorder, your doctor may prescribe you a mild antidepressant. There are cases where hypnosis has been used successfully to treat this disorder. Behavioral modification can also go a long way to help you deal with bruxism. The first thing to do is avoid or at least reduce the consumption of caffeinated foods and beverages like colas, coffee, tea, chocolate, etc. Not only will this help reduce bruxism, it will help keep your teeth whiter! Aside from caffeine, people tend to grind their teeth more after consuming alcohol, so refrain from it if possible. If your child has the habit of chewing gum all the time, counsel your child and explain how it adds to the stress of already stressed jaw muscles. Notice the behavior of your child and see if he or she chews on pens or pencils. Additionally, you can place a warm cloth below your ear lobes at night just before going to sleep. This relaxes the jaw muscles and you are likely to grind your teeth less. You can even self-train to relax your muscles by placing your tongue between the teeth. This keeps you from grinding your teeth and also relaxes your jaw muscles.