October 16, 2014
With so many options in the dental health isle choosing toothpaste can be a little overwhelming. From baking soda, whitening, foaming, desensitizing, tarter control, anti-gingivitis, fluoride…the list can go on and on. No matter the brand always select a toothpaste with the American Dental Association (ADA) seal of approval. Dr. Tillman has a few tips for choosing the right toothpaste for you and your family’s needs.
- Anti-cavity: Almost all the options on the market contain fluoride. Fluoride is just as important as brushing in preventing decay and it actively strengthens tooth enamel.
- Anti-gingivitis: Do your gums suffer from redness and bleeding? You might have gingivitis, a mild form of gum disease. Anti-gingivitis toothpastes help reduce oral bacteria and can be very effective at stopping this gum condition at its source.
- Desensitizing: Ever take a sip of hot coffee or a cold beverage and feel a shooting pain? This type of toothpaste might help to give you some relief – it helps reduce pain by blocking the tooth’s pain signal to the nerve.
- Tartar-control: As its name indicates, tartar-control toothpaste helps prevent the buildup of tartar. While this product is helpful in slowing new buildup on teeth, a professional dental cleaning is the only way to remove existing tartar and the bacteria it harbors.
- Whitening: Containing polishing or chemical agents that remove surface stains, this toothpaste is able to help maintain the natural color of your teeth.
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October 9, 2014
If you have been told you have periodontal (gum) disease, you’re not alone. Many adults currently have some form of the disease. Periodontal diseases range from simple gum inflammation to serious disease that can result in major damage to the soft tissue and bone that support the teeth. In the worst cases, teeth are lost.
Symptoms of gum disease include:
- Bad breath that won’t go away
- Red or swollen gums
- Tender or bleeding gums
- Receding gums
- Painful chewing
- Loose teeth
- Sensitive teeth
Any of these symptoms may be a sign of a serious problem, which should be checked out by Dr. Tillman and our hygienists. At your next dental visit the hygienist can check your gums for signs. They will also ask about your medical history to identify underlying conditions or risk factors (such as smoking) that may contribute to gum disease.
Whether your gum disease is stopped, slowed, or gets worse depends a great deal on how well you care for your teeth and gums every day, from this point forward. Dr. Tillman recommends keeping up with your routine exams and cleanings to help prevent and catch early signs of periodontal issues.
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October 2, 2014
Getting your kids to brush their teeth, yet alone like it, can be tricky. We have some tips that might help you to get your kids brushing and like it!!
Dr. Tillman recommends that you choose a small, child-sized, soft-bristled toothbrush. Soaking the brush in warm water for a few minutes before brushing can soften the bristles even more. Use a pea sized amount of fluoride toothpaste.
Monkey See Monkey Do: Modeling good behavior is one of the best ways to get your kids excited about brushing their teeth instead of thinking it’s a chore. When you brush your teeth, be happy that you’re doing it. If Mom and Dad make it look like fun, the kids will want to do it too. Let them copy you. Buy them the same color toothbrush as you have, or try an electric one, which may be more entertaining for them. Let them try brushing your teeth and then you can brush theirs to make sure they’re actually clean.
Give them a good story: Talk about why we need to brush – how the sugar bugs make holes in our teeth if we don’t brush them away. Sometimes kids need a reason or a good story to get on board.
Make bubbles: Encourage them to create lots of bubbles – that means they’re brushing well. You could hold a bubble-making contest with your kids to see who can create the most bubbles.
Make sure to bring your kids in for their routine check ups and cleanings and our hygienists can help encourage the kids with good brushing habits!
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September 18, 2014
When it comes to chewing gum, it’s the type of gum you chew that makes a difference in whether it’s helpful or harmful to your teeth. While chewing gum containing sugar may actually increase your chances of developing a cavity, there is evidence that demonstrates just the opposite for sugar-free gum. And there’s even better news when it comes to chewing sugar-free gum that is sweetened with xylitol.
Sugar-free gum helps to clean teeth:
Studies have shown that chewing sugar-free gum after meals and snacks can help rinse off the acids released by the bacteria in plaque, which are harmful to tooth enamel. Both the act of chewing and the flavor of the artificial sweeteners in the gum stimulate ten times the normal rate of saliva flow. Not only does the increased saliva flow neutralize the acids in your mouth, it also washes away food particles, helping to keep your teeth clean.
Xylitol reduces decay-causing bacteria:
Sugar-free gum sweetened with xylitol has the added benefit of inhibiting the growth of oral bacteria that cause cavities. In the presence of xylitol, the bacteria lose the ability to adhere to the tooth, stunting the cavity-causing process. With xylitol use over a
period of time, the types of bacteria in the mouth change and fewer decay-causing bacteria survive on tooth surfaces.
To chew or not to chew:
Although chewing sugar-free gum can be beneficial in most instances, there are some cases in which chewing gum is not recommended. For example, if you are experiencing any type of jaw pain you should refrain from chewing gum and talk to Dr. Tillman about what options are available to you.
For most people, chewing sugar-free gum (especially gum sweetened with xylitol) can be a good preventive measure in
situations when toothbrushing and flossing aren’t practical, but sugar-free or not, chewing gum should never replace good dental hygiene practices.
With all these options waiting at the checkout candy rack, it is easier than ever to satisfy your sweet tooth and protect it from cavities at the same time. The next time you are in the mood for a sweet treat, why not bite into a piece of sugar free or cavity-fighting gum that is good for your teeth instead of a sugar-filled candy? Your teeth will thank you.
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September 11, 2014
Is Bottled Water Bad for My Teeth??
Millions of Americans are embracing a healthy lifestyle and turning to bottled water as part of their diet. Bottled water is often marketed as being better for you, but it may be doing your teeth a disservice. Your bottled water could be missing some elements that promote oral health.
Fluoride (which many communities have added to their water supply), battles dental cavities by strengthening tooth enamel and re-mineralizing teeth damaged by acid. Unfortunately, the majority of bottled waters contain little or no fluoride.
If you’re deviating from your fluoridated community water supply, you may need to improvise to get your daily fluoride content. You can discuss your water sources, along with the appropriate level of fluoride you and your family should be getting, with Dr. Tillman. If you just can’t go back to the tap, Dr. Tillman may recommend a fluoride toothpaste or prescribe fluoride drops to help meet your needs.
The next time you buy a bottle of water or use a filtration system, think about your teeth, too. Fluoride helps prevent cavities, and since dental health is linked to overall health, you’ll want to take the right steps to keep your mouth in great shape. Talk to Dr. Tillman about the benefits of fluoride, and include dental care in your plans for a healthy lifestyle. After all, you’ve worked hard for that body –why not have a great set of teeth to go with it?
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July 11, 2014
- Teeth start to form even before birth. Milk teeth, or baby teeth, start to form when a baby is in the womb, but teeth don’t begin to show until a child is between six and twelve months old.
- No two people have the same set of teeth—your teeth are as unique as your fingerprint, so be proud of your unique set of teeth.
- Say Cheese! The calcium and phosphorus found in cheese is healthy or your teeth – it reduces the pH level in plaque and re-mineralizes the enamel.
- The average human produces 25,000 quarts of saliva in a lifetime. That is enough saliva to fill 2 swimming pools!
- Dogs have 42 teeth, cats have 30 teeth, pigs have 44 teeth, and an armadillo has 104 teeth.
- Many diseases are linked to your oral health, including heart disease, osteoporosis, and diabetes.
- The plaque found in your teeth is home to more than 300 different species of bacteria. Listerine, anyone?
- In Medieval Germany, the only cure for a toothache was to kiss a donkey.
- The average woman smiles about 62 times per day! A man? Only 8.
- 50% of people surveyed say that a person’s smile is the first physical trait they notice.
- U.S. and Japanese studies have found that black or green tea has antibacterial powers that help prevent cavities and gum disease.
- In Vermont, it is illegal for women to wear false teeth without the written permission of their husband.
- On September 20th, China celebrates “Love your Teeth Day” – a national holiday promoting oral awareness among its 1.2 billion people.
- A long time ago, humans utilized charcoal or ground up chalk, ashes, lemon juice, and honey-tobacco mixture to clean their teeth. It was only around a hundred years ago that the toothpaste was invented.
- In the 1800s, people who had false teeth in England ate in their bedrooms before gatherings and events at the dinner table. This unique Victorian tradition protected them against the embarrassment of having their teeth ‘fall off’ while dining.
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June 27, 2014
******BIG SCREEN TV GIVEAWAY******
To say thank you to our extended circle of friends and family, we’re giving away a brand new BIG SCREEN TV to one lucky patient!!
Entering the giveaway is easy:
Like Us on Facebook = 1 ticket
Write a Google Review = 2 tickets
Refer a Friend = 5 tickets
Like us, write about us, and refer us to your friends and family to boost your chances of winning.
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June 18, 2014
What are sealants?
Dental sealant is a thin, plastic coating painted on the chewing surfaces of teeth — usually the back teeth (the premolars and molars). The sealant quickly bonds into the depressions and grooves of the teeth, forming a protective shield over the enamel of each tooth.
Although thorough brushing and flossing can remove food particles and plaque from smooth surfaces of teeth, they cannot always get into all the nooks and crannies of the back teeth to remove the food and plaque. Sealants protect these vulnerable areas from tooth decay by “sealing out” plaque and food.
Who Should Get Sealants?
Because of the likelihood of developing decay in the depressions and grooves of the premolars and molars, children and teenagers are candidates for sealants. However, adults without decay or fillings in their molars can also benefit from sealants.
Typically, children should get sealants on their permanent molars and premolars as soon as these teeth come in. In this way, the sealants can protect the teeth through the cavity-prone years of ages 6 to 14.
In some cases, dental sealants may also be appropriate for baby teeth, such as when a child’s baby teeth have deep depressions and grooves. Because baby teeth play such an important role in holding the correct spacing for permanent teeth, it’s important to keep these teeth healthy so they are not lost too early.
How Are Sealants Applied?
Applying sealant is a simple and painless process. It takes only a few minutes for your dentist or hygienist to apply the sealant to seal each tooth. The application steps are as follows:
- First the teeth that are to be sealed are thoroughly cleaned.
- Each tooth is then dried, and cotton or another absorbent material is put around the tooth to keep it dry.
- An acid solution is put on the chewing surfaces of the teeth to roughen them up, which helps the sealant bond to the teeth.
- The teeth are then rinsed and dried.
- Sealant is then painted onto the tooth enamel, where it bonds directly to the tooth and hardens. Sometimes a special curing light is used to help the sealant harden.
How Long Do Sealants Last?
Sealants can protect teeth from decay for up to 10 years, but they need to be checked for chipping or wearing at regular dental check-ups. Your dentist can replace sealants as necessary.
Does Insurance Cover the Cost of Sealants?
Many insurance companies cover the cost of sealants. Check with our office so we can verify if your insurance will cover the cost of sealants.
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March 10, 2014
Do you see the date for your next dental checkup looming
ever-closer on the calendar and feel that little pang of guilt? Maybe it’s been
a week or so since you flossed your teeth. Maybe you let the kids go to bed
without making sure they brushed. Maybe you’ve noticed your spouse’s breath
smelling a little off recently but wrote it off as morning breath (that just
happened to last all day).
As a mom (or dad), it’s your job to help your family
practice good oral hygiene habits. With the help of these three free apps, your
job just got a little easier: (more…)
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