Monthly Archives: July 2015

How To Take Care Of Child’s Oral Hygiene

A child’s dental health is equally important as yours. Neglecting their oral hygiene can give rise to dreaded dental issues in the near future. So how to take proper care of your child’s oral hygiene? Read on to know more.

The very important step here is to start early! The baby teeth of your child are at risk as soon as they appear. Do not take them for granted. Tooth decay in infants is referred as baby bottle tooth decay. It commonly occurs in front teeth but other teeth can also be affected. At times the tooth decay in infants is so severe that their tooth needs to be removed

Before you panic, the good news is that tooth decay can be prevented. You just need to clean your child’s mouth properly. How should it be done?

Cleaning your child’s teeth

You need to start cleaning your baby’s mouth during the first few days after the birth. You should wipe the gums with a clean, moist washcloth. As soon as the teeth appear, start cleaning them too.

When your child turns three years old, start brushing his teeth by using fluoride toothpaste in a very small amount. Brush twice a day, once in the morning and other before going to bed. If your child is brushing on his own then supervise to know if it’s done properly.

For children in the age group of 3-6 years, start using a pea sized amount of fluoride toothpaste. Remind them to not swallow the paste.

Unless you are comfortable that you kid can brush on his own, continue brushing his teeth with a toothbrush recommended for kids.

When should your child visit a dentist?

Wondering when to take your child to a dentist? The answer is as soon as the first tooth appears. It is recommended to have the first dental visit within 6 months of the birth. Do not wait till the time they start their school, make your child comfortable with good habits for a good mouth.

The first visit is generally for dentist to examine your child’s mouth and to check the growth and development of teeth. To make this visit positive you can:

• Try getting a morning appointment when your chid is fresh and co-operative.
• Start on a positive note because children quickly grasp your emotions.
• Never make dental visit sound like a threat and talk to your child in a friendly way.

During the dental visit you can expect the dentist to:

• Examine oral injuries, cavities and other dental problems
• Inform you if the child has a risk of tooth decay
• Discuss teething, thumb sucking habits or pacifiers
• Schedule the next check up if needed

Do not consider visiting a dentist as such a big deal. Oral health is as important as your overall health. If your kids develop cavities at an early stage, it is going to be a grave concern when he grows. So instead of regretting later on, start early.

Teeth Whitening: For Shiny White Teeth

Tooth whitening is amongst the most popular dental procedures that lightens teeth and helps in removing discoloration and stains. It greatly improves the appearance of your teeth. It is a onetime procedure but if you need to maintain the brightness of your teeth then it can be repeated.

The outer layer of tooth is called enamel and the natural color of teeth is created by the reflection and scattering of light off the enamel combined with the color of the dentin under it. Your genes affect the thickness and smoothness of the enamel. Thinner enamel allows more color of the dentin to show through. Smoother or rougher enamel affects the reflection of light and in-turn the color.

Tooth enamel contains pores that can hold stains and daily a thin coating forms on the enamel and absorbs stain.

Why do teeth turn yellow?

Some of the common reasons for teeth to decolor are:
• Not maintaining good oral hygiene.
• Consuming tobacco.
• Drinking dark colored liquids such as red wine, cola and coffee.
• Aging is also responsible for making teeth less white as the enamel gets thinner with age.
• Tetracycline antibiotics.
• Intrinsic stains can be caused by too much fluoride exposure as a child while teeth are developing.
• Trauma may also darken teeth.

How to prepare yourself for teeth whitening?

Before planning to undergo tooth whitening, you need to treat your cavities. This is because the whitening solution can pass through decayed areas and reach the inner parts of tooth.
If you have receding gums or tooth decay, whitening may make your teeth sensitive. Tooth whitening also does not work on veneers, ceramic or porcelain crowns. In case of receded gums, the exposed roots of your teeth may appear to be yellow.

Your dentist will first examine your teeth and find out the reason behind staining. After that he will clean your teeth. This will remove the film of bacteria and other substances that build up on your teeth and cause staining. Here after the procedure for whitening begins.

Types of whitening procedure

There are two main types of teeth whitening procedures:
1. Vital Whitening- Done on teeth that have live nerves
2. Non Vital Whitening- Done on tooth that has had root canal

What are the risks of teeth whitening?

There won’t be any grave ill-effects of teeth whitening although some people’s teeth may become sensitive for some time. Some people could face mild irritation in gum. Pregnant women should avoid whitening teeth since the procedure is cosmetic.

Post teeth whitening treatment

You need to follow up with your dentist if your gums turn sore. Whitening is not a permanent solution and stains could reoccur. The whitening will fade if you consume liquids or foods that stain your mouth. If you can avoid these sources of staining then you won’t need another whitening treatment for a year or so.

You can whiten your teeth frequently if you have custom made mouthpiece and whitening agent at home. You can discuss with your dentist what whitening products are suitable for you.

Causes Of Bad Breath

Bad breath or halitosis is a very embarrassing dental issue which occurs due to poor dental health and overall health too. It can worsen depending on the type of food that you consume. Your lifestyle and food greatly impacts your overall health, and same is true for dental health too.

How does your food affect your breath?

Whatever food you consume breaks down in your mouth. When the food gets digested and absorbed into the bloodstream they get carried to your lungs and are passed off through your breath.

If you consume food like garlic and onions which has strong odours, it lingers in your mouth for quite a long time. Brushing, flossing and even mouth fresheners barely covers up the odour. The odour remains in your mouth until the food gets completely passed out of body.

What are the causes of bad breath?

1. Growth Of Bacteria

Dentist worldwide believe that practising good oral hygiene should be an inevitable part of your daily routine. If you do not brush and floss regularly, food particles remain in your mouth and promote the growth of bacteria. The bacteria grow around the gums, between teeth and on the tongue which leads to bad breath.

2. Tobacco Products

Chewing tobacco based products and smoking are also the major factors causing bad breath. They not only foul your breath but also stain your teeth, irritate your gums and reduce your ability to taste food.

3. Periodontal Disease

Persistent bad breath is a warning sign of gum disease also known as periodontal disease. It is caused by the build up of plaque on teeth. Bacteria lead to the formation of toxins which starts irritating the gums. If left untreated, gum disease can damage the jawbone and gums.

4. Dental Issues

Other dental issues like yeast infection, poorly fitting dental appliances and dental cavities can also be major factors for bad breath. Odor causing bacteria and food particles can lead to bad breath if dentures are left unclean.

5. Dry Mouth

Dry mouth is another medical condition which causes bad breath. Saliva moistens the mouth and neutralizes acids produced by plaque. This helps in preventing bad breath but the absence of saliva gives rise to it. Dry mouth can be caused by various medical conditions. To know more, read about dry mouth and dental care.

6. Other Illnesses

Many other illnesses and diseases cause bad breath. Respiratory tract infection such as bronchitis, postnasal drip, chronic sinus infections, diabetes and kidney or liver problems may trigger bad breath.
You can check for tips to control bad breath.

5 Ways To Prevent Plaque

Have you ever seen a layer of sticky white substance on your teeth? If yes, that fuzzy substance is called plaque. Once the plaque gets hardened only a dentist can clean it and make your teeth shinier again. If left untreated for a longer duration, it can damage your gums and teeth. You need to get rid of it at earliest to avoid damaging your dental health.

So how exactly can you stop the build-up of plaque? Read on to know more.

1. Brush Regularly

There is no substitute for brushing when it comes to oral hygiene. Dentists worldwide have advised to brush twice a day. While brushing you should use a soft bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste. Brushing regularly prevents the build-up of plaque and occurrence of bad breath. Make sure you brush for 3-5 minutes and clean your teeth and mouth thoroughly.

2. Clean Between Your Teeth

Flossing is as important as brushing. It helps in cleaning between your teeth and is crucial for your dental health. You can take guidance from your dentist if at all you are having a tough time flossing and reaching certain parts of the mouth. You can ask your dentist about floss acids, interdental brushes or flossing devices.

3. Use a Mouth Rinse

Mouth wash and mouth rinse are two different things. Mouth wash is used as mouth freshener to get rid of bad breath whereas an antiseptic mouth rinse helps in reducing bacterial formation in plaque. Alongside brushing and flossing, mouth rinse too prevents build-up of plaque. Dentists in UK suggest 30 seconds swish twice a day as a part of teeth cleaning routine.

4. Avoid Sticky Food

The foods that cling to your mouth after chewing are very difficult to remove. Sticky candies and chocolates, raisins or granola bars are such foods. Starchy and sugary foods are harmful for your teeth. If you do not remove sugar from your teeth instantly, your teeth might start decaying. To avoid getting cavity you should rinse your mouth thoroughly after eating food and especially sticky food.

5. See a Dentist

Dentist keeps a tab on your dental health. They give you suggestions to avoid dental problems as well as treat your dental issues. Visiting a dentist twice a year is recommended. Even if you are not suffering from any oral issue, it is advisable to consult a dentist to know what is going wrong in your mouth and how you can fix it.