Posts for category: Oral Health
Do you plan to uphold the quality of your oral health throughout your life? If so, preventive dental care is the answer. This involves regular visits to your dentist, Dr. Alan Myers, or Dr. Eliza Myers, here at Myers Family Dental in Augusta GA, as well as proper oral hygiene habits and practices. Done right and consistently, your risk of developing potential oral health complications would be greatly reduced. Talk to your Augusta dentist to learn more.
What is Your Role in Preventive Dental Care?
Preventive dental care starts with you. Here are a few simple tips you can follow to care for your oral health:
- Brush your teeth properly. Holding your brush at a 45-degree angle, direct the bristles to the area where the teeth and gums meet and brush them in a circular back and forth movement. This should be done twice a day, using fluoridated toothpaste and a soft-bristled toothbrush. Don’t forget to include your tongue.
- Floss daily. This is just as necessary as brushing your teeth as it cleans places between your teeth that are difficult to reach with a toothbrush.
- Limit sugary and acidic foods. You should avoid sugary and acidic foods as they can damage the enamel of your teeth and cause tooth decay.
- Be careful when eating hard and sticky foods. Foods like certain candies and foods that have bones or seeds could crack or chip your teeth.
- Hydrate with water. Drinking water after a meal can rinse away unwanted food debris and moisten the mouth, therefore, lessening the accumulation of plaque.
- Gargle with mouthwash. Rinsing with mouthwash can effectively eliminate bacteria, strengthen your teeth, and reduce acidity in the mouth, and wash leftover food debris away.
- Don’t use tobacco-containing products. Besides staining your teeth, it could lead to other serious health complications such as many different types of cancers and heart disease.
Preventive Dental Care Treatments from Your Augusta Dentist
Common preventive dentistry services include professional teeth cleaning and routine oral checkups. Your dentist in Augusta GA might recommend more preventive care procedures depending on the exact state of your oral health.
How Can Preventive Dental Care Help You?
Visiting your Augusta dentist for routine check-ups and maintaining the right oral health care routine can provide you with various benefits like the following:
- Reduces your risk of getting tooth decay, periodontal disease, and other oral health complications.
- Saves you time and money. Your dentist can easily detect any oral issues that you may overlook and offer a solution in advance, thus avoiding any further expenses or future treatments.
- Helps decrease dental issues linked to certain chronic medical conditions, like osteoporosis, diabetes, some cancers, and eating disorders—all of which can affect your oral health greatly.
For More Information and Tips on Preventive Dental Care, Contact Us
Dial (706) 738-7742 to schedule an evaluation with your dentist here at Myers Family Dental in Augusta GA, Dr. Alan Myers, and Dr. Eliza Myers.
The amount of sugar your child consumes has a huge bearing on their tooth decay risk: The more they take in, the higher it is for this destructive disease. That's why you should moderate their intake of the usual suspects: sodas, candies and other sugar-laden foods. But you should also put the brakes on something considered wholesome and nutritious: fruit juices. And that includes all natural juice with no sugar added.
Sugar in any form is a prime food source for decay-causing bacteria. As bacteria consume leftover sugar in the mouth, they produce acid as a byproduct. With an ample source of sugar, they also multiply—and this in turn increases their acid production. Acid at these high levels can soften and erode tooth enamel, which leads to tooth decay and cavities.
Limiting or even excluding sugar-added foods and snacks can help minimize your children's risk for tooth decay. For designated snack times, substitute items like carrot sticks or even popcorn with a dash of spice rather than sweet snacks and candies. If you do allow occasional sweet foods, limit those to mealtimes when saliva, which neutralizes acid, is most active in the mouth.
As you manage sugary items your children may eat or drink, the American Academy of Pediatrics also advises you to moderate their consumption of fruit juices, including all-natural brands with no added sugar. Their recommended limits on daily juice drinking depend on a child's age and overall health:
- Infants (less than one year) or any children with abnormal weight gain: no juice at all;
- Toddlers (ages 1-3): 4 ounces or less per day;
- Younger children (4-6): 6 ounces or less per day; and
- Older children (7-18): 8 ounces (1 cup) or less per day.
As for the rest of your children's daily hydration needs, the most dental-friendly liquid for any of us is plain water. For older school-age children, low- or non-fat milk is also a sound choice.
Preventing tooth decay in your children is a continuous task that requires all of us, parents and dental providers, to do our part. Besides daily hygiene (brushing and flossing) and regular dental visits, keeping sugar at bay—including with juices—is an important part of that effort.
Your oral hygiene habits play an important role in your oral health and help you avoid cavities, gum disease, and other issues. Your Augusta and Martinez GA dentists, Drs. Alan and Eliza Myers of Myers Family Dental, provide the dental care you need for a healthy smile. Talk to your Augusta Dentist today to learn more.
Why good oral hygiene is so important
Brushing and flossing reduce plaque in your mouth. The sticky substance coats your teeth with a bacterial film that can't be seen but can be felt. If you run your tongue over your teeth first thing in the morning, you'll probably notice that your teeth feel a little rough or furry due to the presence of plaque.
Plaque is particularly dangerous when you eat sugary foods or foods that contain carbohydrates that are converted to sugars, like pretzels, bread, pasta, and potato chips. The combination of plaque and sugar produces acids. These acids are strong enough to attack your tooth enamel and cause cavities.
Cavities aren't the only negative consequence of plaque. If you don't remove plaque, it soon turns into tartar, a hard, brown deposit that tends to form at the bottoms of teeth. Both plaque and tartar are factors in gum disease.
Fortunately, a good oral hygiene routine can lower your risk of cavities and gum disease. Protect your smile by following these recommendations by your Augusta Dentist:
- Brush Twice a Day: Brushing in the morning and evening is the best way to keep plaque under control.
- Brush for Two Minutes: The American Dental Association advises brushing for at least two minutes. If you don't brush long enough, plaque may remain on your teeth.
- Add Flossing to Your Oral Care Routine: Flossing is often overlooked, yet serves an important role in oral hygiene. Flossing, whether it's done with string floss, flossing picks, or waterpiks gets rid of plaque and food debris between teeth.
- Use Mouthwash: Ending your oral hygiene session with mouthwash offers extra protection for your teeth and gums. Anti-bacterial mouthwash kills bacteria while freshening your breath.
- Make Checkups a Priority: Your visits to the Augusta Dentist office include dental cleanings to remove plaque and tartar. Your dentist will also examine your teeth, gums, and mouth and recommend treatment if he or she notices any problems.
Keep your smile healthy with regular dental care. Call your dentists in Augusta and Martinez GA, Drs. Alan and Eliza Myers of Myers Family Dental, at (706) 738-7742 to schedule an appointment.
If there's anything that makes Alfonso Ribeiro happier than his long-running gig as host of America's Funniest Home Videos, it's the time he gets to spend with his family: his wife Angela, their two young sons, and Alfonso's teenaged daughter. As the proud dad told Dear Doctor–Dentistry & Oral Health magazine, "The best part of being a father is the smiles and the warmth you get from your children."
Because Alfonso and Angela want to make sure those little smiles stay healthy, they are careful to keep on top of their kids' oral health at home—and with regular checkups at the dental office. If you, too, want to help your children get on the road to good oral health, here are five tips:
- Start off Right—Even before teeth emerge, gently wipe baby's gums with a clean, moist washcloth. When the first teeth appear, brush them with a tiny dab of fluoride on a soft-bristled toothbrush. Schedule an age-one dental visit for a complete evaluation, and to help your child get accustomed to the dental office.
- Teach Them Well—When they're first learning how to take care of their teeth, most kids need a lot of help. Be patient as you demonstrate the proper way to brush and floss…over and over again. When they're ready, let them try it themselves—but keep an eye on their progress, and offer help when it's needed.
- Watch What They Eat & Drink—Consuming foods high in sugar or starch may give kids momentary satisfaction…but these substances also feed the harmful bacteria that cause tooth decay. The same goes for sodas, juices and acidic drinks—the major sources of sugar in many children's diets. If you allow sugary snacks, limit them to around mealtimes—that gives the mouth a chance to recover its natural balance.
- Keep Up the Good Work—That means brushing twice a day and flossing at least once a day, every single day. If motivation is an issue, encourage your kids by letting them pick out a special brush, toothpaste or floss. You can also give stickers, or use a chart to show progress and provide a reward after a certain period of time. And don't forget to give them a good example to follow!
- Get Regular Dental Checkups—This applies to both kids and adults, but it's especially important during the years when they are rapidly growing! Timely treatment with sealants, topical fluoride applications or fillings can often help keep a small problem from turning into a major headache.
Bringing your kids to the dental office early—and regularly—is the best way to set them up for a lifetime of good checkups…even if they're a little nervous at first. Speaking of his youngest child, Alfonso Ribeiro said "I think the first time he was really frightened, but then the dentist made him feel better—and so since then, going back, it's actually a nice experience." Our goal is to provide this experience for every patient.
If you have questions about your child's dental hygiene routine, call the office or schedule a consultation. You can learn more in the Dear Doctor magazine article “How to Help Your Child Develop the Best Habits for Oral Health.”
Tara Lipinski loves to smile. And for good reason: The Olympic-gold medalist has enjoyed a spectacular career in ladies' figure skating. Besides also winning gold in the U.S. Nationals and the Grand Prix Final, in 1997 Lipinski became the youngest skater ever to win a World Figure Skating title. Now a sports commentator and television producer, Lipinski still loves to show her smile—and counts it as one of her most important assets. She also knows the importance of protecting her smile with daily hygiene habits and regular dental care.
Our teeth endure a lot over our lifetime. Tough as they are, though, they're still vulnerable to disease, trauma and the effects of aging. To protect them, it's essential that we brush and floss every day to remove bacterial plaque—that thin accumulating film on teeth most responsible for tooth decay and gum disease.
To keep her smile in top shape and reduce her chances of dental disease, Lipinski flosses and brushes daily, the latter at least twice a day. She also uses a tongue scraper, a small handheld device about the size of a toothbrush, to remove odor-causing bacteria and debris from the tongue.
Lipinski is also diligent about visiting the dentist for professional cleanings and checkups at least twice a year because even a dedicated brusher and flosser like her can still miss dental plaque that can then harden into tartar. Dental hygienists have the training and tools to clear away any lingering plaque and tartar that could increase your disease risk. It's also a good time for the dentist to check your teeth and gums for any developing problems.
The high pressure world of competitive figure skating and now her media career may also have contributed to another threat to Lipinski's smile: a teeth-grinding habit. Teeth grinding is the unconscious action—often while asleep—of clenching the jaws together and producing abnormally high biting forces. Often a result of chronic stress, teeth grinding can accelerate tooth wear and damage the gum ligaments attached to teeth. To help minimize these effects, Lipinski's dentist created a custom mouthguard to wear at night. The slick plastic surface of the guard prevents the teeth from generating any damaging biting forces when they clench together.
The importance of an attractive smile isn't unique to celebrities and media stars like Tara Lipinski. A great smile breeds confidence for anyone—and it can enhance your career, family and social relationships. Protect this invaluable asset with daily oral hygiene, regular dental visits and prompt treatment for disease or trauma.