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Posted by on Nov 24, 2014 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Seven Guaranteed Ways To Ruin Your Veneers

Porcelain veneers are applied over the surface of your existing teeth to smooth out your smile. Once applied, your teeth appear uniform, white and flawless. The veneers require some regular care and attention to keep them looking their best. In contrast to the effort required to care for the veneers, you can stain, damage or destroy them much easier. Here are seven different ways to damage your veneers.

Ignore Them

Neglecting your veneers is a great way to end up with plaque buildup and discoloration. Avoid brushing your teeth a few times a day, and don’t floss daily. Both of these things will remove food particles and plaque, which damage your veneers and your natural teeth as well.

Skip Dentist Appointments

Don’t attend regular dentist appointments every six months. The dentist will clean the veneers and your teeth, protecting your veneers instead. Those regular appointments will keep your daily neglect from doing its damaging job, because the dentist has the tools to clean the surface and polish the veneer again to restore its shine.

Become a Smoker

Porcelain veneers are naturally stain resistant, but if you are persistent enough, you can stain those veneers with yellow in just a few months by smoking cigarettes. If you are a particularly heavy smoker, it might even happen faster. Nicotine is harsh on both natural teeth and porcelain, so smoking is a sure-fire way to stain that white smile.

Brew a Cup of Stains – or, Coffee

Add coffee and tea to your daily meal plan, and by all means, avoid brushing your teeth after you drink them. Brushing your teeth thoroughly after you drink coffee or tea will clear away the surface stains before they can soak into your veneers, so steer clear of the toothbrush.

Leave the Fruits and Veggies in the Fridge

Reach for something soft before you grab that apple. Eating fruits and vegetables will clean your teeth (and veneers) whether you want them to or not. The hard texture of the food will actually remove plaque from your teeth as you eat. Avoid apples, celery, carrots and other crunchy produce to keep away from this natural tooth cleaning.

Eat Hard Candies and Nuts

Chewing on hard candies, nuts and ice can chip or otherwise damage your veneers And, if you catch the edge of the veneer with something hard, you may even loosen the bonding agent holding the veneer to your teeth. Keep a bowl of nuts and candies in the kitchen, or chew the ice in your cup of soda regularly for the abrasive benefit.

Get Rid of Your Mouth Guard

If you’ve got a habit of grinding your teeth, you’re already halfway there. Stop wearing your mouth guard at night to guarantee damage to your veneers. Despite the natural durability of veneers, grinding your teeth will put significant stress on the porcelain, which will damage the material and may actually break the bond holding the veneer to your teeth.

Playing sports can get the job done, too. Things like football, hockey, boxing and ice skating can all be just what it takes to damage your veneers. If you take part in things like this without the safety guards for your mouth, you might be able to chip, crack or remove the veneers. Any kind of impact on your teeth can do this.

When your smile reveals the white glimmer of veneers, you may wonder what you can do that’s going to stain, discolor, chip or damage them. The tips here are sure to help you damage those perfect veneers. If you have any other concerns or questions about your efforts, the after-care training from your dentist is sure to be a source of inspiration.

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Posted by on Nov 18, 2014 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

4 Smart Reasons To Get Dental Implants As Soon As Possible

Losing teeth and wearing dentures can be a traumatic life event that no one wants to go through. Permanent dental implants can improve your life, especially when you are struggling with all the problems associated with tooth loss. Here are four real reasons you should get dental implants.

Dentures Cause Damage

Constant pressure on the bones beneath your gums will cause the bone to atrophy. Wearing dentures causes this type of constant damaging pressure on your jaw bones. Over time the jaw bone will completely wear away so that only skin from your gums remains, which won’t support your dentures. This will lead to more slippage and rubbing. 

Your jaw may begin to open and close slightly different to make up for the poorly-fitting denture. This can cause headaches, jaw pain, and neck pain. 

Your dentures will also rub at the skin on your gums, causing irritation and sores. Because these sores on your gums are constantly subjected to bacteria in your mouth, it can put you at risk of getting a mouth infection. 

If your dentures are not cleaned thoroughly, fungus can grow on them and be transferred to your irritated gums, getting beneath the broken skin. This will cause fungal infections inside your mouth.

Teeth are Aesthetically Pleasing

Having your own permanently-fixed teeth means that they work the best way possible. Teeth that are fixed to your jaw bones don’t slip off or slide around when you go through your day. You can talk to people and smile without being self-conscious. 

When you don’t have a full set of teeth, your lips may sometimes have a caved-in appearance as there are no teeth behind them to give your face its natural shape. Having your own dental implants will restore the natural look to your face and its structure.

Losing Teeth is a Difficult Life Event

Some people consider losing a tooth similar to losing an arm or a leg, and a recent study has shown bad dental health can also lead to depression

When you have missing teeth, it is a life changing adjustment and you will sometimes begin to act differently in social situations. You might stop going out socially completely because you are ashamed of the way your missing teeth look. When you have missing teeth you won’t want to smile, talk to people, and even form romantic relationships. Even eating foods in front of others can be stressful and cause anxiety because you may not want people to watch you try to eat without all your teeth. 

Losing one or more teeth is a life changing event as it means that you are aging and that your body is beginning to “fall apart”. Everyone handles aging differently; some deal with it more traumatically than others.

Food Enjoyment

There may be certain foods that you crave that can be harder to chew, such as popcorn, peanut brittle, caramel corn, and even apples. When you lose several teeth and need replacement teeth, it is beneficial for you to get permanent dental implants that will allow you to eat all your favorite foods. 

You also don’t need to worry about food getting stuck underneath dentures, or worse, sticky foods pulling your dentures completely off.

For the first few months after getting dental implants you should eat soft foods to allow the implants to heal inside your jaw bone. The dental implant screws need to heal in the right placement, otherwise when the permanent implants are attached, they will be out of alignment and can give you problems. So, refrain from eating your favorite crunchy and sticky foods while the implants heal.

These are four great reasons to get dental implants for yourself.

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Posted by on Nov 18, 2014 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Understanding Why Dental Work Costs So Much And How You Can Lower Your Bill

After a quick trip to the dentist you may be shocked to see your dental bill. Depending on how thorough your insurance coverage is, you may have to save up for more serious treatments like root canals and bridges, or you may have to work out a payment plan with your dental office. Before you start to resent your dentist for the cost of his or her work, you should take some time to consider the real cost of treatment. 

What You Are Really Paying For 

In the United States, dental patients are usually seen in clean, well-lit offices. They are worked on by highly trained professionals using quality equipment. All of this comes with a price tag, which can sometimes be quite surprising. 

Education for dentists can cost as much or more than medical school. Your dentist most likely has at least two years of university classes, although it is more common for them to have a bachelor’s degree, followed by four years of dental school. This leads to an average of $241,000 in student debt

When you go to your dentist’s office, you are not only seen by your dentist though. You may be seen by a hygienist, who has either a degree or technical certification costing between $30,000 and $45,000. A dental assistant may assist your dentist or hygienist, and they probably spent between $3000 and $9000 in training. Finally, there is usually a receptionist to help file your paperwork and lab technicians creating crowns, in-lays, and other dental prosthetics. 

Besides the people who are working with you, there are costs to purchase working dental equipment and supplies, utilities, and office rental, which can add up quickly. 

What You Get For Your Money

While there is logic behind the high cost of dental care, you may still wonder what you are getting out of it. Would it be better to participate in dental tourism to a country where the cost of becoming a dentist and setting up an office is not as much as it is in the United States? 

When you receive dental care in the United States, you receive care from professionals who are held to high standards by their state licensing boards. These standards include extensive training, the use of quality materials, and measures against the spread of infectious diseases. While you could get a similar standard of care for less in another country, it is not guaranteed, and you can not always know what your experience will be like when you go abroad. 

All of this adds up to you having a greater peace of mind when you get your dental care done by a certified dentist in your state. 

How Can You Reduce Your Costs? 

Believe it or not, your dentist’s prices are not set in stone. While you may not walk out of the office with a free visit, there are ways that you can reduce your bill. 

First, try negotiating for a better price. This is most effective when done before the procedure, and if you have quotes from other dentists in the area. While you are negotiating, you should ask for discounts for paying up front, or getting multiple procedures done at once. 

Once you have negotiated an affordable price for your treatment, think of ways you can shave off even more. For instance, many people do not require anesthesia for surface cavities, and it can save you a bit of money if you opt out of it. 

The final way to really save money on your dental bill is to regularly maintain your teeth. Brushing twice a day and avoiding sugary foods can help prevent major problems. Also, going to the dentist’s office, like Artistic Dentistry by Gerard Wasselle, DMD, once a year for a professional cleaning and exam will cost less than major treatments that result from neglecting your teeth. 

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Posted by on Nov 13, 2014 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

5 Dental Problems Associated With Chemotherapy (And How To Deal With Them)

If you’re about to undergo chemotherapy for treatment of cancer, you should be aware of the possibility of side effects pertaining to your oral health. Some of the more common dental issues experienced during chemotherapy include mouth pain and inflammation, bleeding gums, dry mouth and infection. A change in taste sensation may also occur.

How Chemotherapy Affects Oral Health

Chemotherapy drugs are intended to kill cancer cells in the body. In doing so, the drugs may destroy other “healthy” cells, which makes the patient more susceptible to a host of complications. You may not have thought your cancer treatment could affect your oral health, but it’s not as uncommon as one might think. The following is a list of common issues that may affect your oral health as a result of chemotherapy, along with practical solutions for dealing with them:

1. Oral Pain and Inflammation

Anti-cancer drugs may cause sore gums or dental pain in some patients. This discomfort may be worsened in patients with sensitive teeth. You might ask your dentist about using an anti-sensitivity toothpaste and mouthwash. Rinsing your mouth with warm salt water may relieve the discomfort as well.

Your dentist may suggest placing hot or cold compresses on your face to control oral pain. You might want to experiment with both to see which works best for you. Additionally, your dentist may prescribe fluoride treatments.

2. Bleeding Gums

It’s not unusual to experience bleeding gums during or after chemotherapy. This may occur while brushing your teeth or while flossing. Do you know what causes bleeding gums when taking anti-cancer drugs?

Some chemotherapy drugs interfere with the body’s natural blood clotting ability. This means you’re more susceptible to bruising and bleeding. Take these measures to reduce the risk:

  • Don’t pick at your teeth with a dental instrument or toothpick.

  • Use a soft-bristled toothbrush.

  • Avoid hard or crunchy foods during your chemotherapy.

  • Refrain from smoking or chewing tobacco

3. Dry Mouth

Certain anti-cancer drugs may interfere with the production of saliva. If you experience temporary dry mouth during chemotherapy, consult your dentist. You can relieve dry mouth by using an over-the-counter oral rinse and toothpaste formulated for this purpose. The “artificial saliva” helps replenish moisture in the mouth.

In addition, be sure to drink plenty of water to stay hydrated. Your dentist may also recommend sucking on sugarless hard candies. This may help stimulate the production of saliva.

Dry mouth is often relieved several weeks after chemotherapy ends, when salivary glands return to a normal state.

4. Infection

Chemotherapy suppresses the immune system, thereby making the patient more vulnerable to infection. Patients with poor oral health prior to beginning chemotherapy may have a higher risk for bacterial or fungal infection.

If you experience a dental infection, your dentist may prescribe an antimicrobial mouth rinse in additional to a course of antibiotics. If the infection is caused by an overgrowth of fungi, an anti-fungal mouthwash may be prescribed.

If you wear dentures, it is essential to keep them immaculately clean and disinfected. Soaking them in a solution of vinegar and water will destroy germs. Alternately, you may soak your dentures in a baking soda and hydrogen peroxide mixture.

5. Temporary Alteration in Taste Buds

Chemotherapy may alter your sensation of taste. Typically, this is a temporary situation that should resolve soon after cancer treatment has ended. In medical terms this condition is known as dysgeusia.

When taste buds become damaged during chemo treatment, you may experience an unpleasant taste in your mouth while eating or throughout the day. In addition, you may not be able to distinguish salty tastes, or sweet from sour.

Ask your dentist or physician if you may benefit from taking zinc sulfate supplements to regain your taste sensation. Increasing your fluid intake may also help to a degree. You should avoid smoking, as this may worsen symptoms.

Inform Your Dentist

Before you begin your chemotherapy, it’s important to visit your dentist to inform him or her about your cancer treatment. Your dentist will be able to monitor your oral health and offer suggestions on how to avoid and treat dental problems. In addition, practicing good dental hygiene, such as brushing and flossing after meals, will help you maintain proper oral health during chemotherapy and for life. For more information, contact a clinic like Knellinger Dental Excellence.

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Posted by on Oct 21, 2014 in Uncategorized |

Use The Tooth Fairy To Help Improve Your Child’s Oral Hygiene

The tooth fairy brings joy and delight to kids all over America and many other parts of the world. While most parents view it as merely a fun fantasy for children, the tooth fairy myth can be wrapped into a larger, more meaningful experience. Proper care of teeth can be a difficult task for children, but savvy parents can use the tooth fairy to help reinforce positive habits. Here are some things you can do:

Create an appropriate back story

While almost every child understands the tooth fairy brings rewards in exchange for baby teeth left under pillows, there is a lot of missing detail in the bigger story. Some parents have created impromptu, family-based traditions to fill in some of the gaps, but most children are never given reasons for why the tooth fairy goes about her nightly rounds.

That provides you with a prime opportunity to create a fantastic back story full of detail. The richer you make the story behind the tooth fairy, the more your children will be enchanted with the wonder and mystery. Ultimately, this fascination can be channeled toward an increased enthusiasm for practicing good oral hygiene. Here are some questions you may want to answer as you craft your family’s tooth fairy tale:

  • Who is the tooth fairy, and where did she come from?
  • Why did the tooth fairy begin to provide rewards in return for teeth?
  • What values are important to the tooth fairy?
  • How does the tooth fairy go about her nightly duties?

As you write, use descriptive language that evokes positive emotional responses in young children. Don’t worry if it isn’t a “perfect” story; a few plot holes here and there will not be noticeable. Also, resist the urge to make your home’s tooth fairy into an overly-moralizing, joyless creature that does not have your child’s interests at heart. While you want your tale to be powerful, kids are going to tune out a tooth fairy account that strikes them as authoritarian.

Provide extra rewards for healthy teeth

Ensuring healthy teeth in your kids is a big part of your home’s tooth fairy experience, so be sure that your children are rewarded more for surrendering healthy teeth than ones that have evidence of decay such as spots or fillings. If you are unsure as to what constitutes a healthy tooth, then spend some time with your family’s dentist or dental hygienist; ask them to provide a quick description of decayed teeth. Certainly don’t expect to become a dentist after a few minutes of conversation, but you can correctly identify big problems much of the time with a little training.

When the tooth fairy rewards your child, be sure to include a written note describing the tooth fairy’s “reaction” to your child’s tooth. If it is a perfectly healthy tooth, use effusive praise and recognition. If it has a suspected spot of decay, then make mention of it, but never castigate the child or use any type of negative language. Much in the same way Santa Claus merely rewards less well-behaved children with fewer presents, then you should be sure to provide a small reward on behalf of the tooth fairy.

Build an ongoing dialog

The tooth fairy is traditionally considered an infrequent visitor to homes, but one of the advantages of creating your own story is that you can “break the rules” and expand her role. Here are some ideas:

  • Make mention of the tooth fairy around brushing and flossing times; keep the conversation positive, and focus on why the tooth fairy is pleased by healthy teeth.
  • Send your child a card from the tooth fairy after they receive a good report at the dentist’s office; include a little extra reward in the card if you wish.
  • Create or purchase a tooth fairy doll that can be prominently located in a place within your home such as your child’s bathroom or the kitchen. The doll can serve as a visible reminder for kids to practice good oral hygiene habits.

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