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Sealants to Fight Tooth Decay:

October 16th, 2019

The main way to ward away tooth decay and dental disease is to brush teeth twice daily, and floss at least once. However, even a careful brusher may miss the nooks and crannies on the tops of teeth. Molars especially can have an irregular shape, and in the spaces between the peaks and valleys, food debris and bacteria can thrive.

Anyone who’s diligent enough to work the bristles of the brush over all the surfaces of each tooth should be able to clear away any of the debris or plaque that can lead to tooth decay or, between the spaces of teeth, gum disease. And careful, diligent brushing habits are paramount to a healthy mouth, but there are also sealants, put in place by your dentist at Premier Smile, that work to ensure that your efforts with the toothbrush and a strand of floss are not wasted.

Statistically, sealants reduce the risk of tooth decay by 80%. Amazing that such a small thing can have such a great impact on oral health. And while sealants are an obvious health benefit for adults, statistics also show that school-age children who don’t have sealants—over 50% of children studied did not have sealants—are three times more likely to develop cavities than their childhood counterparts.

To understand what a sealant is and how it works, first let’s talk about tooth decay: a cavity is a hole in the tooth caused by acids produced by bacteria. Bacteria produce these acids when they are able to feed on the sugars within leftover food debris.

So, when a sealant is applied to the tooth, it covers the surface, both at the peak and in the valley, on the tooth and prevents food debris from settling. And sealants are simple for your dentist at Premier Smile to apply. Your dentist will apply the sealant onto the grooves of the tooth, and then use a blue light to harden the sealant. Simple and effective.

If you have any other questions about dental sealants, or if you are ready to schedule your next appointment with your dentist at Premier Smile, then call today.

How Connect Are Allergies to Your Teeth?

September 19th, 2019

Allergy sufferers already have a lot to deal with.

While the rest of us can enjoy springtime blooms and autumn hay rides, a change in seasons means itchy eyes, sneezing, stuffed noses, and sinus headaches for those with seasonal allergies.

And did you know on top of all that, allergies can affect teeth as well?

Here are the three main ways.

Dry Mouth

Allergy sufferers who get stuffy noses have to rely more heavily on mouth breathing. Mouth breathing dries out our mouths because air is constantly moving in and out. Certain oral medications and inhalers used to treat allergy symptoms may also cause a dry mouth.

Having a dry mouth can be a major problem when it comes to our dental health — saliva is a key component in the prevention of tooth decay. It swishes away bacteria and debris, neutralizes the pH in our mouth, and remineralizes teeth to keep them strong.

If your seasonal allergies get bad for only a couple weeks a year, you’re probably fine. But if you suffer from them on a more long-term basis, it’s best to discuss any dry mouth you experience with your dentist.

Misaligned Teeth

Another unwanted side effect of mouth breathing due to allergies is malocclusion — a fancy word for misaligned teeth. To talk and chew properly and to prevent jaw pain, you need to have a jaw that is aligned well when you bite down.

For young kids, who are still growing, mouth breathing can lead to a misshaped palate, causing teeth to grow in at different angles.

While misaligned teeth are not a serious health condition, an orthodontist may need to correct it down the road.

Tooth Pain

Some patients report toothaches — mostly around the upper molars — that seem to coincide with their allergies. Sinus pressure builds to the point of your maxillary sinuses pushing down on the roots of those upper molars, creating discomfort.

If you take an antihistamine and your tooth pain seems to go away, then your toothache is likely just a sinus problem. If your tooth pain doesn’t go away as your allergies ease up, then a trip to your dentist is in order.

Final Tips

If you suffer from seasonal allergies, stay vigilant and knowledgeable about your dental health. Brush and floss on the daily and keep up with your routine dental visits.

If you are unsure how your specific seasonal allergies or medications are affecting your oral health, your dental team can help! Breathe easy, friends.

Fluoride is Necessary and Important: Here’s Why…

September 17th, 2019

Fluoride is important for many reasons. First, did you know that cavities and tooth decay are the most common disease in both adults and children? It’s true, and that statistic applies to both adults and children worldwide. And fluoride is the simplest and safest method to limit and prevent the onset and spread of cavities. Fluoride protects the teeth: it helps to make teeth stronger and naturally resistant to acid. Remember that cavities are caused by the acids produced by bacteria: bacteria feed on the sugars we eat and drink and produce acid. This acid wears away the enamel, the hard, protective, outer coating on the teeth. And fluoride, which is added to many public water supplies throughout the world, can help prevent cavities and even reverse the decay, in its early stages.

Fluoride in the water supply is nothing to worry over. In fact, it’s been named one of the great public health achievements in the 20th century. People often fret over the addition of chemicals, but fluoride is a naturally-occurring element in nature, and water is the best choice of beverage for both adults and children, because, unlike juices and sodas, which are usually loaded with sugars and artificial sweeteners—both of which are bad for both the teeth and the body—clean water helps to rid the teeth of sugars and food debris, and also keep the body healthy and appropriately hydrated.

And even though fluoride is added to water, it’s still important to use a toothpaste that includes fluoride among its ingredients. Use a toothpaste that is approved by the FDA, and brush twice daily. And remember to floss at least once every day, and drink plenty of clean water.

If you have any questions about toothpaste, the appropriate toothbrush, or if you would like to schedule your next visit to see your dentist at Premier Smile—remember that twice yearly dental visits are an important component to dental health—then call Premier Smile today.

Healthy Summer Smiles:

August 14th, 2019

Every season and holiday poses a unique challenge to a healthy, bright smile. But it’s possible to enjoy the seasons and holidays, partaking in the typical treats and participating in the seasonal activities, and still keep that smile bright and healthy. Here’s a few tips to keep your smile healthy and bright during the remainder of the summer season.

A major obstacle during the summer months, especially in households with children, is to keep to a regular dental care routine. Oftentimes in the warmer months we spend time doing things much later in the evening: a firework show, BBQ, etc. And it can be difficult for people to continue to stick to a routine. Children awake well-past usual bedtimes, watching fireworks or roasting marshmallows over the embers of a fire, might feel overly tired and neglect their teeth when it’s finally time for bed; or they may have fallen asleep on the drive back home, and they are put straight to bed. It’s important to always keep to a regular dental routine: brush teeth twice daily and floss at least once. Decay can take hold quickly, and without regular cleanings could lead to cavities and other dental problems.

The summertime is the perfect time to enjoy sugary drinks: lemonade and other sports drinks are often the first to be reached for when the temperatures rise. But remember to drink plenty of water, and if you do reach for a glass of lemonade or a sugary tea, consider either cleaning your teeth or, at the very least, drink water immediately after to help clean the mouth of the excess sugar.

And possibly the most important tip to keeping your smile bright and healthy in the summer months is to pay a visit to your dentist at Premier Smile. You may be reluctant to visit the dentist this time of year, but you should always stick to twice-yearly checkups/cleanings. It’s also the perfect time to get children in to see the dentist, because you won’t have to pull them from school to make the visit.

If you are ready to schedule your next visit to see your dentist at Premier Smile, then call today.

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