Give Teeth the Valentine’s Attention that they Deserve

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Valentine’s is almost here! Candy, love letters and maybe even a romantic candle lit dinner with a special someone. However, getting ready for the perfect day is not just about crisp clothes and fine jewelry. A riveting smile can really pull together just about any look.

Teeth are one of our longest lasting relationship and deserve to be treated well this holiday and every day after. Give them a gift that will make them shine! Been considering Invisalign or teeth whitening? Why not? A bi-annual visit to the dentist or a short term goal like Invisalign may be just what those teeth need to feel appreciated and help them be their best!

 

Sometimes it can be hard to give teeth the attention they deserve. Flossing and brushing can seem just a little too easy to glance over and maybe even a bit tedious. Try turning it into a date! Put on some music and pay extra special attention to dental hygiene for just a few minutes. The music will help keep time while also making the task seem much less tedious.

Be sure to extend that care throughout the day too! Stay hydrated, avoid sugar and try not to use those pearly whites as tools to open things or chew needlessly.

Teeth Friendly Foods

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Food naturally sticks to teeth and can affect people in negative ways. Plaque, cavities and bad breath can all be a side effect of the food we eat but some foods can also aid in oral health.

Leafy greens are well known to be good for digestive health and packed full of iron and fiber but they also can reduce the risk of oral cancer. Studies done recently have concluded that smokers, specifically women, have reduced chances of developing oral cancer simply by eating leafy greens.

Another vegetable that helps keep teeth clean is the beloved carrot. Carrots help combat plaque. Plaque is a film that forms over the teeth that eats away at both enamel and gums. Any medium sized carrot or a handful of baby carrots can take care of the job.

Next is fruit! Surprisingly, even fruit, with their sugary taste, are helpful soldiers in the battle for oral health. Strawberries actually house a specific acid, malic acid, that is known to whiten teeth naturally. No need for synthesized chemicals!

Raisins are full of antioxidants, we all know this. However, not everyone knows that these antioxidants help slow or even halt the growth of at least two different types of bacteria that naturally grow in the mouth. Thank the raisins for fresher breath and whiter teeth!

Lastly and most strangely is hard cheese. Dairy products are known to help build strong teeth and bones but hard cheese eaten at the end of a meal will help maintain the pH balance. Just like the pH balance of a pool stops sludge from forming, oral pH balance does the same!

Stress and Oral Dental Health

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Stress is a common culprit when it comes to sudden and mysterious health issues. It is commonly known that stress can cause both mental and physical health issues like trouble sleeping and weight gain but stress can also affect oral health.  Therefore it is an important to get  dental cleanings and examinations at least twice a year.

Sometimes stress can cause a physical reaction that may or may not be intentional.  Bruxism or teeth grinding is a common reaction to stress that can cause fractures or loosen teeth until they fall out. This behavior can sometimes happen in the night while the afflicted is asleep, making it possible for them to not even know they’re doing it! Sometimes stress can dissuade people from healthy habits like exercise or proper oral dental health which can lead to problems like gingivitis, plaque and cavities that arise from lack of flossing, brushing and rinsing with mouthwash.

Other times, strange sores and blemishes can appear within or around the mouth. One such blemish is a canker sore. While bruxism can sometimes be connected with them, canker sores tend to appear at will during stressful times. The sores are gray or white, are located within the mouth and are often times painful but are not contagious. Stress can affect the immune system as well, which would allow symptoms of the herpes simplex virus to appear. These appear on the lip as little bumps full of fluid and are in fact contagious.

Stress sometimes can lead to the infamous stress eating of sugar snacks. Be sure to avoid candies and cakes as they not only affect teeth but weight. Keeping calm, cool and collected is the best way to avoid problems that can arise from stress.  Also, remember to see your dentist at Las Vegas Smile Center.

Sweets and Teeth

Sweets and Teeth Dentist

We all already know that sweets lead to cavities. Despite this, sugar consumption in America is skyrocketing. Especially around the holidays like Valentine’s Day and Halloween where the consumption of sweets has a propensity to be higher. 

In the early 1900’s, Americans only consumed an average of 4 pounds of sugar a year.  Currently, we consume a WHOPPING 160 POUNDS of sugar a year.  Even in just the past decade, despite public announcements and health trends, sugar consumption is steadily increasing.

In everyone’s mouth is a realm of bacteria. This can also be referred to as oral ecology. Entire colonies of microorganisms live within the mouth, most of which do no harm. Those who brush their teeth have about 1,000 to 100,000 bacteria living on each tooth. Those who do not, well, they can have between 100 million and 1 billion bacteria on each tooth.

When proper hygiene is practiced some of the bacteria are beneficial in preventing disease. However, Streptococcus mutans and Streptococcus sobrinus are the two destructive ones that aid in the formation of cavities. These two species of bacteria feed on the sugar that is eaten, and as a result, form a sticky, colorless film known as plaque. Regular flossing and brushing removes most of the plaque before it causes significant damage.

THE IMPORTANCE OF HEALTY HABITS

30% of Americans only brush their teeth once a day. Most dentists concur that twice a day is the bare minimum. Brushing your teeth for one minute is considered not nearly enough, while two minutes is about right. 

When this healthy brushing habit breaks, it gives way to the production of tartar. Tartar is what plaque turns into, if left unattended. Tartar is formed from plaque, mixing with minerals in saliva, eventually hardening into a strong bond with discolored deposit that traps stains.  These bonds can be removed by a dental hygienist during a dental check-up and cleaning.

In a perfect world, we would reduce the amount of sweets we eat and brush our teeth three times a day, an hour after each main meal and visit our dentist at Las Vegas Smile Center on a routine basis.