Alcohol’s Effect On Our Gum Health

Alcohol’s Effect On Our Gum Health

Drinking_543EVEN IF YOU only enjoy an occasional glass of wine, it’s important to know how it can affect your gum health. A recent study published in the Journal of Periodontology brings new light to the connection between alcohol consumption and gum disease.

Drinking Can Raise Our Risk For Gum Disease By 27 Percent

Over 500 study participants were asked about their drinking habits, and their gum and overall oral health was evaluated on several levels. This revealed a surprisingly close relationship between alcohol and gum disease risk.

  • Men who drank regularly were shown to have an 18 to 27 percent increased risk of gum disease.
  • For people who already had periodontal disease, levels of alcohol consumption increased the rate and severity of the condition.
  • In participants without periodontal disease, heightened alcohol consumption increased risk factors for gum disease: symptoms like gum detachment, gum bleeding, and increased plaque levels.

Correlative Relationship May Be Caused By Dry Mouth

While further research is needed to evaluate the precise reason for this connection, it seems to be greatly due to dry mouth, a common effect of alcohol consumption. Saliva neutralizes acid in the mouth, and serves to cleanse our mouths from harmful bacteria. Alcohol decreases saliva production, and can strip our mouths of the protection they need.

Effective Flossing Will Protect Gum Health

Preserve Your Smile By Taking Gum Disease Seriously

Gum disease is the #1 cause of tooth loss in adults. 50 percent of those over 30 are affected by some level of gum disease. The good news is that in its early stages, gum disease is reversible with strategic oral care.

Here at our practice, we know how to deal with gum disease and we can help you get control of it.

Talk With Us About Your Habits So We Can Give You The Best Care

Here’s our advice to you: be aware of the risks that alcohol poses to your oral health, especially if you enjoy an occasional (or not-so-occasional) drink. Be upfront with us about your habits, and we can help give you the most effective care and advice to preserve your healthy smile for life.

Thanks for your trust in our practice! We appreciate you.

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The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.
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How To Make Brushing More Fun!

How To Make Brushing More Fun!

BRUSHING YOUR TEETH twice a day for two minutes is an important practice that helps keep your smile bright and healthy. But, does it have to be boring? We certainly don’t think so!

Brush For A Full Two Minutes

Using proper brushing technique for at least two minutes is necessary to ensure that all tooth surfaces are properly cleaned.

Sometimes we may be tempted to speed through our morning routine and brush a bit more vigorously to make up the difference. Brushing too aggressively, however, can lead to gum recession, tooth decay, or more serious oral health concerns. So, how do we make brushing for the full two minutes more fun?

Fun Tips To Make The Time Fly By

  • Brush to the beat! Brushing your teeth to your favorite song can help those two minutes fly by.
  • Use an app. The Oral-B™ brushing app, for example, times your brushing for you while letting you scroll through the news.
  • Exercise. (Yes, exercise!) Some people choose to stretch, do calf raises or even squats while they brush.
  • Read, watch television or stream videos. Taking your mind off of watching the clock helps brushing go by more quickly.

What About The Kids?

Making brushing fun for you is one thing, for kids it can be even harder. So, what can we do as parents to help our kids enjoy those two minutes of brushing in their morning and nightly routine?

  • Participation. Having your kids push the button on the timer or put the toothpaste on the toothbrush are small gestures that make it more fun for them.
  • Make it a game! Help your kids use their imagination while brushing.
  • Offer a reward. For example, give your child points every time they brush. When they reach a certain amount of points, they can earn a special prize!
  • Brush with them! Kids love following the example of their parents and if they see you doing it, they will likely want to do it themselves.

We Love Helping You Care For Your Smile

In the end, it’s all about doing something you enjoy while brushing. Whether it’s reading the news, watching your favorite TV show, or listening to music, brushing those teeth can be quick, beneficial and fun!

If you have any questions about ways to make your oral health routine more enjoyable, feel free to ask! We are committed to providing you with all the tools you need to enjoy a lifetime of happy and healthy smiles.

Thank you for reading our blog and being a valued patient and friend!

Top image by Flickr user kerinin used under Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 4.0 license. Image cropped and modified from original.
The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.
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Is Chilly Weather Hurting Your Teeth?

Is Chilly Weather Hurting Your Teeth?

WE MAY FEEL the dropping temperature in our toes, but we shouldn’t be feeling it in our teeth! Some of us experience a shock of pain as we breathe in the crisp air, or sip some hot chocolate. Tooth sensitivity tends to manifest in temperature extremes, so we notice it more during the winter season.

Sensitivity Is A Cry For Help

Tooth sensitivity is fairly common, but that’s no reason to ignore it! Tooth sensitivity could be your mouth’s signal that something is wrong. For the most part, solutions are simple. And, as with most dental problems, sensitivity is best dealt with early on.

Some Causes of Sensitivity Can Lead To More Severe Problems

Healthy teeth are guarded from extreme temperatures by the tooth’s enamel layer, and by your gums. Sensitive teeth may signal receding gums as a result of gum disease or overbrushing. Sensitivity could also be caused by damaged enamel from a cracked tooth, acid erosion, or decay.

We Can Help You Find A Solution

Whatever the cause of your sensitive teeth this season, it’s important to get it checked out by a dental professional. We can help you determine the cause, and find a solution. It may be a simple change in your dental care regime. Other times, a dental procedure can relieve your discomfort.

No One Should Suffer From Tooth Pain

We believe that no one should suffer from dental problems without hope of a solution. Please talk to us if you ever have questions about your dental health. We consider it an honor to be your trusted health partner, and to keep your teeth healthy for life.

Thanks for your trust in our practice. We appreciate you!

Top image by Flickr user Jason Ippolito used under Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 4.0 license. Image cropped and modified from original.
The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.
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Dental Documentary Pioneers: Taking the Fear Out of the Dental Bonding Experience

There’s fear of flying (Aerophobia), fear of germs (Mysophobia), fear of wide open spaces (Agoraphobia), and then there’s the fear of dentists (Dentophobia).

 
Almost 75% of the adult global population fears the dentist. When you think about a dental visit, it’s not hard to see why this fear is so prevalent. After all, the dentist approaches your mouth with all sorts of tools and then, even if you wanted to, you can’t watch what’s going on in there. You’re only left with strange sounds and sensations and, worst of all, your imagination.

 
Thankfully, we live in the age of technology. For the first time in recorded history, you can witness dental procedures in the luxury of your home, putting to rest fears you may have about visiting a dentist for a procedure.

 

YouTube Dental Bonding Video
One such procedure that worries people is called dental bonding. Dental bonding is a cosmetic dentistry procedure in which a tooth-colored composite material is applied to a tooth, sculpted into shape, hardened, and polished. Dental bonding is used for many reasons, including restoration of chipped, broken or decayed teeth, to reshape or whiten your smile, or to fill in gaps between the teeth.

 
This sounds like a lot for the mouth to endure. However, if you simply go to YouTube you can see the procedure completed. You’re essentially getting a backstage pass to a dental bonding experience complete with a real dentist and patient.

 
In fact, searching within YouTube for ‘fixing a chipped tooth’ returned over 4k results. Granted, some results are for educational purposes (dental training), but a large portion of videos are regular people documenting their dental experiences.

 
Whether they realize it or not, these dental documentary pioneers are helping others that may not seek out necessary dental treatment or cosmetic dentistry for fear of what the procedure may entail. Remember, knowledge is power. Watch a few videos of different dental procedures on YouTube and educate yourself. Click Here to view before and after bonding images.

 
If you still have concerns or questions, never be afraid to ask your local Mesa, AZ Dentist Dr. Gary Robison for answers.

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A Smile To Be Proud Of At Any Age

A Smile To Be Proud Of At Any Age

AGING BRINGS CHANGES. Some of those changes we love, and some drive us crazy. But every change is better when you have a caring professional on your side.

Many believe that lost teeth are inevitable with the progressing years. That’s simply not true! With proper care, your teeth can last a lifetime. And with modern techniques and technology, you can be proud of your smile for just as long.

We’ll Help You Care For Your Aging Smile

Every patient, and especially those over age 50, need to care for their gums! Gum disease, not tooth decay, is the number one cause of missing teeth in adults. As we age, our resistance to infection (including infections that cause gum disease) lowers.

However, daily brushing and flossing, together with close care from our team, will keep your teeth and gums healthy. Some patients may need more frequent cleanings, special tools, or specific procedures like root planing and scaling, in order to maintain or restore gum health.

Understand The True Value Of Your Smile

As we age, we understand the wisdom in taking good care of ourselves. Not just for our own sake, but for our loved ones, as well.

Your smile is integral to your health and happiness. Social interactions, the way we talk and eat, and the way we feel about ourselves are all affected by the state of our smile. A beautiful, cared-for smile is key for looking and feeling healthy as we age.

One more wonderful thing often comes with age: the time and ability to pursue our own interests and passions. Take this opportunity to invest in your smile, and enjoy the positive effect that it will have in all aspects of your life!

It’s Never Too Late For A Beautiful Smile

If you believe that you’ve missed your chance for a beautiful smile, take another look! Recent developments make the dentures of 10 years ago look like ancient history. Even small procedures can subtract years, and add to your health and confidence.

Thanks for your trust in our practice. We love our patients and we love seeing you smile. Let us know what we can do to protect, preserve, and restore your smile.

Thank you for reading and for being our valued patients and friends!

Top image by Flickr user Christopher Michel used under Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 4.0 license. Image cropped and modified from original.
The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.
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Oral Health And Hearing: Brushing Is Music To Our Ears

Oral Health And Hearing: Brushing Is Music To Our Ears

HAVE YOU EVER HEARD your favorite music performed live? You likely noticed things that often don’t come across in a low-quality recording—the exact texture of the instruments and richness of the sound, for example. The parts of our auditory system that pick these things up are delicate, and can be dulled by trauma or disease.

What does this have to do with brushing your teeth? A lot, actually! Research is making it clear how far-reaching the benefits of good oral health are, including links to reduced risk of hearing loss.

It All Begins With Bacteria

Our mouths are home to billions of microbes of many different species. Many of them aren’t anything to worry about, but some of the more harmful microbes in dental plaque cause inflammation and tooth decay. If not removed by regular brushing and flossing, these bacteria will work their way into the bloodstream through infected, irritated gums.

Once inside the circulatory system, they inflame and narrow blood vessels in other parts of the body. When blood vessels that feed the auditory system are restricted, the fragile “hairs” that pick up sounds in the inner ear—called stereocilia—can be damaged, leading to hearing loss. And here’s the kicker: stereocilia don’t grow back.

3 Keys to Reduce Risk of Hearing Loss

Hearing loss occurs naturally with age—in fact, it affects about one out of three people by age 65. But there are steps each of us can take to reduce the risk and severity of the problem. Here are three easy-to-remember points:

  1. Maintain good oral hygiene. Twice daily brushing and daily flossing will keep inflammation-causing bacteria from causing problems.
  2. Wear hearing protection like earplugs or earmuffs if you work around constant loud noises.
  3. Turn down your music, especially young people with headphones. If someone can overhear it in your headphones, it’s probably too loud.

Oral Care Improves All Areas of Life

Hearing is just one part of life preserved or enhanced by good hygiene. It’s impossible to ignore how much oral care, or the lack thereof, affects day-to-day living.

We have a “big picture” view of dentistry as an essential component of overall health, so our advice and treatment is focused on making lasting improvements to quality of life!

Thanks for reading! We look forward to talking with you during your next visit.

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The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.
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Are Cavities Contagious?

Are Cavities Contagious?

WE ALL KNOW it’s possible to catch a cold from someone who’s under the weather. Did you know cavity-causing bacteria can be passed from person-to-person too?

Bacteria Is At The Root Of Cavities

While sugary treats often take the blame for causing cavities, the real culprits for tooth decay are bacteria. Streptococcus mutans and Streptococcus sobrinus are bacteria which stick to our teeth and eat food particles left behind from our last meal, producing acids which threaten gum health and cause tooth decay.

And just like cold-causing bacteria, these bacteria like to travel.

Bacteria Travels From Person-to-Person

Whether it’s through sharing a drink or kissing a loved one, cavity-causing bacteria can be passed from person-to-person the same way many other bacterial infections can. Studies have shown that “catching a cavity” is not only possible, it happens far more often than you might think.

One of the most common transmissions is from parent and child. Cavity-causing bacteria is commonly passed along to a child when a mother or father tastes food to ensure it’s not too hot or when he or she “cleans” a pacifier by sucking on it before handing it over.

Take Simple Steps To Stop The Spread of Bacteria

What can you do to reduce your risk of transmitting these cavity-causing bacterias to someone else?

  • Floss and brush frequently.
  • Chew sugar-free gum—this promotes saliva production and washes away plaque and bacteria).
  • Be mindful of drinks and eating utensils you’re sharing and the risks that are involved.
  • Be aware of other behaviors which may spread these bacteria.

Trust Our Practice For Solutions

Nobody wants to inadvertently “catch a cavity.” Our practice is committed to providing you with the best information possible to help you create a healthy and resilient smile. If you have any questions about this, be sure to ask us! We love visiting about your oral health. You can also comment below and reach out to us on social media.

Thank you for reading our blog! We value our relationship with you as our patients and friends!

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The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.
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Wisdom Teeth: Why Do We Have Them?

Wisdom Teeth: Why Do We Have Them?

WHEN DENTISTS SEE emerging wisdom teeth are going to cause dental problems, wisdom tooth removal is likely in the cards.

Wisdom teeth–also known as the third molars–received their nickname because they emerge during young adulthood, when a person has a little more wisdom. But why do we wait until the late teenage years to address the issue? In fact, if wisdom teeth so often cause complications, why has nature given them to us at all?

Wisdom Teeth Have Ancient Roots

The most widely accepted theory behind wisdom teeth suggests we look to our ancestors in the distant past for answers. Early humans had a much different diet than we do today: roots, raw meat, tough plants—foods that would have required a lot of grinding. Big, wide molars were the perfect teeth for the job, and that third set of molars would have helped them immensely! They also had larger jaws to accommodate these extra teeth.

Today, we have smaller jaws and eat much softer foods, but our genes still produce third molars! When they don’t have enough room to emerge properly, wisdom teeth can begin erupting at angles of 45 degrees or more—even horizontally! When teeth grow where there isn’t space for them, they cause a lot of problems.

When Is Removal The Right Decision?

Wisdom teeth emerging at bad angles or crowding other teeth can damage oral health. They might not even emerge at all, becoming impacted below the gum surface. In either case, they can cause constant pain and infection, weaken bone structure, and undo orthodontic work.

You might ask why wisdom teeth aren’t addressed in early childhood. It’s because they actually don’t begin forming until around age 10! All teeth (adult teeth included) begin forming in the jaws during fetal development—except for wisdom teeth.

We Treat Each Wisdom Teeth Case Individually

There are the lucky few that have no problems with their wisdom teeth. It is possible for them to emerge at the right angle, with enough space, and not have to be removed.

Each case is unique, and by getting to know your unique dental profile, we will prescribe the best dental health solution—without any unnecessary treatment. From diagnosis to wisdom teeth removal recovery, we’ll be there every step of the way to provide the best in advice and care.

Thank you for choosing us as your family’s lifelong dental health partners. We treasure the trust you place in our practice!

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The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.
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Juice Smarter: Your Teeth Will Thank You

Juice Smarter: Your Teeth Will Thank You

WHILE JUICING IS ONE OF THE most popular health fads right now, how does it affect your smile?

Juices Can Be Tough On Teeth

Many juices contain high amounts of acid and sugar that can compromise healthy teeth. Frequently drinking juices with overly acidic and sugary ingredients can begin to wear away the enamel of our teeth, putting us at greater risk for cavities.

But, don’t fret—you don’t need to go throw away your juicer just yet! There are a variety of simple ways to make your juices healthier and still taste great.

Choose Ingredients That Strengthen Your Smile

Make your juices healthier by considering some of these options:

  • Add more leafy greens! Leafy greens help build strong bones and strong teeth because they are high in calcium, magnesium and phosphorus. Greens won’t spike your blood sugar like sugary fruits and vegetables will.
  • Use fruit sparingly and when you do, be sure to use ripe fruits. Unripe fruits tend to have more acid than ripened ones.
  • Add a teaspoon of coconut oil. Coconut oil, amongst other amazing properties, contains antibacterial properties that are great for your teeth!
  • Add cranberry juice! Amongst numerous vitamins and nutrients, fresh cranberries have compounds that keep cavity-causing bacteria from sticking to your teeth. So, to add nutrients and teeth-protecting properties, simply add a splash of cranberry juice to your recipe.
  • Steer clear from highly pigmented foods. Fruits and vegetables that are strongly pigmented can potentially stain your teeth. Examples of these foods are: dark berries and beets.

What you put into your juices is the important thing to keep in mind when juicing. Ask yourself when adding ingredients: Does this add nutrients to my juice? Will my teeth benefit from this or not? Is there too much sugar or acid in this ingredient?

Here's a few recipes to get you started:

We Care About Your Whole Body Health

By being mindful and aware of the ingredients you add to your juices, you can begin making smart decisions for not only your teeth, but your overall health. If you have any questions about how the juices you enjoy affect your teeth, feel free to schedule an appointment to see us or leave a comment below!

Thank you for reading our blog and being our valued patient and friend!

Top image by Flickr user Rob Bertholf used under Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 4.0 license. Image cropped and modified from original.
The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.
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