The Best Ways To Prevent Plaque Build-Up

There are many ways teeth can be damaged, and plaque is a common example. When you are familiar with this topic, you can avoid plaque build-up and have healthier teeth.

What is Plaque?

A small amount of plaque is not always visible. The sticky substance consists of food particles, mucus, and bacteria. The substance can cause tooth decay, and increase your risk of gum disease. If there is enough plaque to be visible, it may already be causing damage. The Best Ways To Prevent Plaque Build-Up

When plaque is not removed, it can harden and become tartar. Tartar can contribute to bacteria growth. It is much easier to control plaque than to have tartar removed with dental instruments.

Avoid Sugary Foods

Foods that contain carbohydrates leave a residue on your teeth. This causes the bacteria that is naturally in your mouth to grow. The acids produced by the bacteria can destroy your tooth enamel. When plaque forms, it can also harm the tooth’s roots, and damage the bone that supports the tooth.

While starchy foods also contain carbohydrates, it is easier to eliminate or reduce the sugary foods in your diet. Instead of sugary carbohydrates, choose tooth-friendly products. Fresh vegetables and fruits, plain yogurt, cheese, black or green tea, and sugar-free gum are good alternatives to candy, cookies, and other sweets.

Avoid sugary foods as much as possible, but be especially cautious of products that cause the most damage. Chewy candies and hard candies that linger in your mouth should never be eaten. Avoid carbonated beverages, too. When you want to avoid sugar and promote dental health, choose fluoridated water or a cool glass of milk.

Limit starchy carbohydrates in your diet. While some starchy foods are important for good health, you do not need crackers, potato chips, and similar starchy foods that provide empty calories and no nutritional value.

Daily Dental Care

To reduce plaque and prevent build-up, practice home dental care conscientiously. Use a soft toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste to brush at least twice every day. Brushing carefully along the gum line can remove additional residue. Brush the areas where your teeth and gum meet.

Make flossing and mouthwash part of your dental care routine. Rinse with an antibacterial mouthwash if you eat or drink between meals.

Dental Visits Twice Each Year

When you want healthy teeth, you should be at the dentist’s office every six months. Home dental care cannot replace professional dental hygiene. The instruments will remove excess plaque and hardened tartar that you cannot remove at home. Hard-to-reach places in your mouth will also be cleaned. You can be free from plaque and on your way to excellent oral health.

It is not possible to completely prevent plaque build-up, but these few tips can make a difference. If you want more information on how your diet and home dental care routines affect your health, call today to make an appointment with our office.

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What is the Connection Between Periodontal Disease and Heart Disease?

Without any type of cardiovascular testing, it may be possible to detect an early heart problem. However, scientists have done research that shows a person’s mouth may be able to tell if he or she is at a high risk to develop heart disease. Individuals with periodontal disease (or gum disease) are twice as likely to suffer from heart disease. Since there is this link between the two conditions, your dentist may be able to help with your overall health.connection between periodontal disease and heart disease

What is the Connection Between Periodontal Disease and Heart Disease?

Many researchers believe that these two conditions are both caused by bacteria. When your gums become infected, the bacteria that is causing the problem breaks the wall between your gums and the connective tissue. As you chew and brush, this bacteria enters the bloodstream, which means that it may be carried to other parts of your body, including your heart.

Swelling is your body’s own way to fight an infection. When bacteria from your mouth moves to other places in your body, more inflammation occurs and often forms arterial plaque. This causes your arteries to become blocked, which may lead to a heart attack or stroke.

Should I Be Worried About Having Dental Procedures Performed?

If you have a pre-existing condition that involves your heart, you may be at a heightened risk for the development of bacterial endocarditis. This is an infection that affects the heart’s valves and inner lining.  At any point that your mouth bleeds, some bacteria may enter your bloodstream and settle on weakened tissues or valves. If this is the case, the infection may cause extreme damage. Before any dental procedure, make sure to inform your dentist about any heart conditions that may be of concern.

How to Prevent Gum Disease

Gum disease infects the tissues that support your teeth. With this condition, you may lose your teeth. The American Dental Association explains that the best way to prevent this from happening is to properly care for your oral health, including:

  • Brushing Twice Daily
  • Flossing
  • Eating a Balanced Diet
  • Visiting Your Dentist for Semi-Annual Exams

Recognizing the Early Signs of Periodontal Disease

Usually, gum disease presents itself with red or swollen gums. You may also experience bleeding when you brush. You may notice that your gums begin to recede as well. Oftentimes, a person suffering from periodontal disease will have bad breath or a sour taste in his or her mouth.

Treating Gum Disease

If you believe that you have gum disease, you should consult with your dentist immediately. During the early stages, it is possible to reverse the condition. However, when periodontal damage has become severe, it may be necessary to perform surgery, tissue or bone grafts, or further invasive treatments.

At the office of Dr. Dana Walters, all patients receive top dental care. At each visit, the doctor will examine every patient’s mouth. If he detects periodontal disease, he will recommend the best course of action to protect the patient’s overall health. For an appointment, contact our office today.

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The Mouth-Body Connection: How Can Taking Care of My Mouth Affect My Overall Health?

When you have healthy or unhealthy teeth, they affect more than your mouth. The condition of your teeth and gums affects your overall health, too. You can reduce your risk of serious medical issues by making your oral health a priority. how oral health affects overall health

The Relationship Between Your Oral Health and Overall Health

The connection between oral health and general health is bacteria. While bacteria are naturally found in your mouth, poor oral habits can cause an overgrowth.  When bacteria are allowed to remain in your mouth and grow, they may enter your bloodstream. Then, they will circulate throughout your body, and endanger your overall health.

Bacteria and Medical Issues

Many medical issues can occur from poor oral health. Cardiovascular disease is one example.  Bacteria can reach your arteries and block blood flow. The endocardium of your heart can also become infected. If this happens, your risk of a stroke or heart attack can increase.

Poor oral health during pregnancy can increase the risk of complications.  Women are more likely to experience premature birth and low-birthweight babies.

Diabetics can also experience complications with poor oral health because it can be more difficult to control blood sugar.

If bacteria spreads throughout your body, it can also increase your risk of respiratory infections.  For example, lung infections, such as pneumonia, are more likely when you have poor oral health. 

A Healthy Mouth for Overall Health

One of the most important steps to good health is to avoid gum disease and tooth decay. Start out by making a healthy diet a part of your daily life. Consume plenty of calcium-rich foods and beverages to keep your teeth strong and healthy. Also, limit sweets and acidic products that can damage your teeth.

Home oral care is only useful when you practice it regularly.  Brush, floss, and use a fluoride mouthwash at least twice each day. It’s a great habit to brush your teeth or rinse with mouthwash after each meal.

Routine dental visits will help keep your mouth and body healthy. When plaque and tartar are removed with dental instruments, there will be fewer bacteria in your mouth. Every professional cleaning will contribute to your better overall health.

However, dental care is not limited to routine visits. There are reasons to contact your dentist when it is not time to schedule a semi-annual checkup. If you have a cavity or notice signs of gum disease (bleeding or receding gums), make an appointment immediately. You should also call if you experience a dental emergency, such as an injury to your mouth or a severe toothache. Prompt, effective treatment can prevent further problems.

When you take proper care of your mouth, your general health will benefit. Not only can you have a full set of healthy teeth throughout your lifetime, you will be taking an important step to safeguard your general health. Oral care is a simple process that makes a difference.

Your mouth and body do not have to be connected by bacteria. Good habits can reduce the bacteria in your mouth, and reduce the bacteria that flows through your bloodstream. Your physical health can benefit greatly, and you may never experience the complications that come with poor oral health. Contact our office today to schedule an appointment.

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5 Resolutions For Better Oral Health in 2018

5 Resolutions for Better Oral Health in 2018Another year has just begun. While you celebrate the start of a new year, take a few minutes to set some goals. As new year’s resolution, place these goals at the top of your to-do list. These changes will benefit your oral health in 2018.

Improve Your Home Oral Care Routines

There are a number of changes you can make to promote better oral health. First, you should brush and floss at least twice each day. After breakfast and at bedtime are ideal times to do these things in order to care for your teeth and gums.

Second, devote enough time to brushing and flossing so your teeth and gums will be completely clean. A good rule of thumb is to take at least two minutes to brush. Gently brush your teeth, tongue, and the roof of your mouth, too. Floss after brushing, and rinse with fluoride mouthwash.

Use the Best Dental Care Products

Brushing and flossing will produce the best results when you use products that meet your needs. The products you used years ago may not be appropriate now. Always choose products approved by the American Dental Association.  If you are not sure which toothbrush, floss, or mouthwash is right for you, contact your dentist for recommendations.

Even if you have the perfect toothbrush, it is not meant to last forever. The bristles will wear out and not work as well. Toothbrushes are also a place where bacteria may collect and grow. For the most effective brushing, dispose of your toothbrush and buy a new one every three to four months.

Choose A Tooth-Friendly Diet

The new year can be a start to a diet that benefits your physical and oral health. Tooth healthy foods are rich in calcium. Milk, plain yogurt, cheese, and other calcium-rich foods will keep your teeth strong.  Avoid acidic foods and beverages, as well as sugary treats.

If you occasionally snack between meals, try healthier options. Instead of sugary treats, chew sugar-free gum because it can actually be good for your oral health. Chewing gum can prevent dry mouth, and your breath will be fresh. Nuts and trail mix are also great to snack on and are healthy for your teeth, as long as you make sure nothing gets stuck in them.

Break Habits That Harm Your Teeth

For 2018, give up habits that are harmful to your oral health. One great example is quitting smoking and using other tobacco products. This will prevent further yellowing and decay caused by these products, as well as provide several other benefits to your overall health.

Here are some other bad habits that could damage your teeth: Do not use your teeth to open bottles or chew ice and other objects like pens. Also, if you suspect that grind your teeth at night, ask your dentist about a mouth guard. This device is easy to use and can prevent damage to your teeth and jaw.

Schedule Regular Dental Appointments

We know you have a busy life, but dental appointments should be on your calendar. When you want excellent oral health, it starts with semi-annual teeth cleaning. Even the most conscientious homecare cannot replace professional cleaning. Make sure you are in the dentist’s chair at least twice a year. During your routine appointments, a thorough exam will also determine whether you have underlying dental problems that need to be treated or corrected.

When you set these goals, you can have the best year ever. Contact our office today to start having better oral health in 2018.

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