Starting Your Kids on a Path to Healthy Teeth
It can be a challenge to keep your kids on a consistent brushing schedule, but it is extremely important that you do! Teaching your kids to start a healthy routine of brushing two times a day and flossing once every day can help them form these habits for their whole life.
You may think that if your child is young and still has their baby teeth, it isn’t important to take them to the dentist, but dental care for children is just as important as it is for adults. The American Dental Association recommends that you take your child within six months of getting get their first tooth or by their first birthday. Baby teeth serve as guides to the adult teeth, and if they fall out too early, or become very unhealthy, it can affect the alignment of the adult teeth that are coming in. Children have many of the same issues as adults and experience.
For more information visit: https://www.ada.org/en/
Taking your kids to go to the dentist regularly will also increase their comfort level with their dentist overall. This will help them ensure they are educated about their teeth and dental hygiene, and lessen the anxiety of going to the dentist and begin a positive experience that will last a lifetime. It can also reinforce the idea of going every six months, an important notion for adults as well!
Dental health is important at all ages, it is no different for children. Impressions can be made and lessons learned in those early years, and a healthy mouth is important to lead a healthy life.Lear More
Wearing Dentures to Bed Increases Risk of Pneumonia
According to recent research seniors in a three-year study who went to sleep while wearing their dentures were twice as likely to get pneumonia as those who did not.
The study followed over 400 denture wearers and found that forty-one percent who wore their dentures while sleeping were twice as likely to develop pneumonia. The study advises the results were clear, no one should wear dentures to bed. The study was published in the October online edition of the Journal of Dental Research. While wearing dentures to bed is never a recommended practice, with this new finding it is more important than ever to remove them prior to sleep.
It is estimated that up to thirty-five million Americans have no teeth and that twenty million wear dentures. With today’s advanced dental care and the use of implants instead of dentures, there is hope that future generations will have reduced numbers of Americans without teeth.
Fact Over Fiction: Oral Health Myths Revealed
The Good, Bad and, the Ugly About Oral Health
There are many misconceptions about oral health that can prevent us from seeking treatment when needed, or scare of unnecessarily. As the saying goes, knowledge is power, so with the help of AAP below you will find the most common misinformation below, please put it to good use!
According to the AAP, some of the most common misconceptions about oral health are:
- The primary reason for tooth brushing is to remove food debris.
FACT: Daily brushing and flossing will also keep the formation of plaque to a minimum. If not removed every 26 hours, plaque will irritate gums, which can lead to periodontal disease.
- Bleeding gums are normal.
FACT: Bleeding gums are one of the eight signs of gum disease. Think of gum tissue as the skin on your hand. If your hands bled every time you washed them, you would know something is wrong.
- Oral health doesn’t affect overall health.
FACT: When the gums are infected, periodontal bacterial byproducts can enter the bloodstream and travel to major organs and set off other problems. Research suggests this may contribute to the development of heart disease, the nation’s leading cause of death; increase the risk of stroke; increase a woman’s risk of having a pre-term, low birth weight baby; and pose a serious threat to people whose health is compromised by diabetes, respiratory diseases or osteoporosis.
- Bad breath is caused by a lack of oral hygiene.
FACT: Excellent oral hygiene doesn’t necessarily relieve bad breath. There are certain kinds of bacteria in the mouth that produce volatile sulfur compounds. If these sulfur compounds build up enough, the result can be clinical bad breath. In addition to brushing and flossing, brushing the tongue (where the sulfur resides) can help eliminate bad breath.
- Cavities are the number one cause of tooth loss.
FACT: Together, periodontal disease and cavities are the primary cause of tooth loss.
- Pregnant women should skip professional dental checkups.
FACT: Periodontal health can affect unborn babies’ health. Studies have shown an infection during pregnancy, including periodontal disease, is cause for concern and may increase the risk of delivering a premature, low birth weight baby.
- Stress does not cause problems in the mouth.
FACT: High levels of financial stress and poor coping abilities increase the likelihood of developing periodontal disease. Researchers found people who dealt with a financial strain in an active and practical way (problem-focused) rather than with avoidance techniques (emotion-focused) had no more risk of severe periodontal disease than those without money problems.
Oil Pulling: The Latest Trend in Oral Health
Any time spent recently on the internet has probably led you to some article on oil pulling. Not only is it claimed to be better than conventional oral hygiene, but many are claiming benefits such as healthier hair, clearer skin, whiter teeth, elimination of parasites, improved body odor, and easing of joint pains. This newly focused attention on the importance of oral health is always welcomed, however, it is important as professionals to make certain these trends are actually delivering what they are promising.
Should you make oil pulling a new part of your health routine? Here are some reasons to avoid oil pulling.
First, if it did work, it takes too long. Almost all of the proponents of oil pulling suggest 20 minutes of swishing to obtain the benefit. Twenty minutes for most people to add to their “normal” routine will seem like a lifetime. Brushing our teeth twice a day for two minutes and flossing for another minute or even two equates to at most six minutes daily. This is even hard for a lot of people to do. I am saving you 14 minutes by not doing oil pulling. You’re welcome 🙂 Proper brushing and flossing have been shown to be effective at keeping our teeth and gums healthy. Why drift from something proven and endorsed by the American Dental Association? I realize the traditional approach isn’t as exciting, and unlikely to be endorsed by glamorous celebrities like Gwyneth Paltrow, but nonetheless, this approach will be successful, time after time.
Second, it doesn’t do what they claim it does. As for the oil pulling and the claims of whiter teeth and better oral health, there is no evidence to back up the claims. A positive effect on bad breath and bacteria that cause decay. Hmmm…..now one can’t be sure, but perhaps the mere act of swishing anything in one’s mouth for twenty minutes could remove bacteria, but there are simply no quality studies to prove this. The ones that do exist use research from extremely small sample size with questionable experimental design.
Third, it is not risk free. What harm can it do? This brings me to a little known thing called lipid pneumonia. It is a specific form of pneumonia that develops when aerosolized oil enters the lungs. Will this happen to you if you oil pull? I am not saying it will but there are risks that many proponents fail to discuss or mention when touting these “new” ideas.
Finally, my recommendation is this. Please don’t spend your valuable time and money on unproven methods, when it concerns something as important as oral health. Instead invest in maintaining good oral health with your qualified, concerned and caring dentist. Studies are finding that our health depends on us making oral health a priority. Heart disease, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, and ED are just a few of the proven diseases associated with poor oral health. Now is the time for us to understand the importance of oral health and for us to focus on documented approaches with professionals to maintain the optimum level. As we now know, this is critical to our health.
Perhaps we in the dental field need to promote the fact that chew sticks, the predecessor to the toothbrush, were discovered in tombs in Babylonia in 3500 BC… if ancient makes it interesting.