How to choose the right toothpaste

July 21, 2014

If you walk down the toothpaste aisle at the store and are completely overwhelmed, know you’re not alone. There is an array of varieties for consumers to choose from with different ingredients, flavors and purposes. So how do you choose? Take a look at the following tips to help narrow down which toothpaste is right for you.

Consider specialty toothpastes. Many types of toothpaste offer a specialty. Some are used to fight cavities, control tarter, strengthen or whiten your teeth. Others are available for individuals with sensitivity problems. Choose your toothpaste based on what you prefer and let me know if you have any questions!

Check out the ingredients. Most types of toothpaste contain fluoride, the most important ingredient in preventing tooth decay and cavity occurrences. Fluoride makes your tooth enamel stronger, preventing acidic damage from foods and drinks. Although many types of toothpaste and water contain fluoride, don’t use either as a replacement for dentist office visits.

Think about alternative choices. Because there is some scientific debate on the negative side effects that fluoride could have on your body, companies have created organic toothpastes, including Tom’s of Maine. Tom’s of Maine is an ADA approved toothpaste and has many benefits that non-organic toothpastes also provide.

For an all-inclusive list of ADA approved toothpaste, visit the American Dental Association’s website here,and make your next trip down the toothpaste aisle a simpler task.

 

Sources:

http://www.webmd.com/oral-health/guide/tooth-enamel-erosion-restoration?page=2

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Dental resolutions for 2014

December 30, 2013

As it gets closer to the new year, many of us are making resolutions to exercise, lose weight and get organized. What about your teeth? Here are a few suggested resolutions to help your smile stay bright and healthy:

Brush twice a day and floss daily. Brushing your teeth twice a day fights plaque and decay. Flossing gets rid of food particles trapped between your teeth and gums that a toothbrush just can’t reach.

Use mouthwash. A daily rinse with antiseptic mouthwash will help kill germs and bacteria that you can’t reach with a toothbrush. Mouthwash will also freshen your breath and fight plaque.

Drink more water. At least eight, 8-ounce glasses of water a day is the recommendation. If you are drinking water, you are less likely to drink cola, tea and coffee, which can stain your teeth.

Use protective devices. Wear a custom-fitted mouth guard when playing sports (even during practice!) to protect your own or your child’s teeth.

Visit your dentist twice a year. Taking care of your teeth at home is just the first step in keeping a bright and healthy smile. Your dentist can diagnose and treat any potential problems before they become big issues.

2014 can be the year your entire family resolves to have brighter, healthier smiles.


‘Smile healthy’ holiday gift ideas for all ages

December 17, 2013

Here are some ideas for gifts and stocking stuffers that are not only fun, but will help protect the smile of a friend or family member:

‘Smile healthy’ stocking stuffers

  • Sugar-free gum or mints
  • Single-use toothbrushes, preloaded with toothpaste (Ex: Colgate Wisps)
  • Travel size dental floss, mouth rinses, toothpastes, toothbrush and toothbrush holder (can be packaged nicely in a travel bag too!
  • New toothbrushes (cartoon characters and bright colors are popular for children
  • New toothpaste and/or mouth rinses in fun flavors
  • Hourglass timer in fun colors for kids to time brushing
  • Tooth fairy pillow/box
  • Sports mouth guard (in team colors)
  • Zoom! Whitening pens
  • Electric toothbrush
  • A gift certificate for professional Zoom! teeth whitening

Another idea is to offer to pay for (or a portion of) a dental procedure your loved one has been putting off due to lack of funds or dental insurance.


Taking care of teeth at work

November 12, 2013

On average, we spend a third of our day at work. While at work, we eat lunch and often grab a snack from the vending machine or birthday cake from the lunchroom. Do you clean your teeth during the long workday? Here are a few tips for keeping your smile healthy at the workplace:

  • Keep a toothbrush and toothpaste in your desk, locker or lunchbox and brush after eating.  Or try the single-use toothbrushes, preloaded with toothpaste (Ex: Colgate Wisps).
  • If you are embarrassed to brush your teeth at work, try rinsing your mouth with mouthwash.
  • Chewing sugarless gum will increase saliva production and neutralize acids in the mouth that cause tooth decay.

Fun Quiz: Name the celebrity smile

October 10, 2013

How well do you know Hollywood smiles? Take this quiz from Web MD and post your results in the comments section below.

Healthy SmileWish you had a movie star smile? I offer cosmetic services such as whitening, veneers and implants. Visit the Smile Gallery  on my website for before and after photos. Contact my office to set up an appointment and see which procedure is right for you.


Nutrition tips for pregnant women

September 12, 2013
Making smart food choices while pregnant will help in developing your baby's dental health.

Making smart food choices while pregnant will help in developing your baby’s dental health.

Pregnant women need to be especially careful when making healthy food choices. The baby’s teeth begin to develop between the third and sixth months of pregnancy and making smart food choices will help in developing his/her dental and overall health.

  • Eat a variety of foods, such as fruits, vegetables, whole-grains (cereal, breads, crackers), and dairy products (milk, cheese, yogurt)
  • Eat fewer foods that are high in sugar, such as cookies, candy, cake, and dried fruit
  • If you have trouble with nausea, try eating small amounts of healthy foods throughout the day
  • Drink water or milk instead of juice, fruit-flavored drinks or pop
  • Drink water throughout the day (between meals and snacks). Tap or bottled is fine, as long as it is fluoridated water
  • Take your prenatal vitamins daily. Make sure you are getting 600 micrograms of folic acid daily. Foods rich in folic acid include:
    • Vegetables—asparagus, broccoli, lettuce, and spinach
    • Legumes—beans, peas, and lentils
    • Fruits—papaya, tomato juice, oranges and orange juice, strawberries, cantaloupe and bananas
    • Grain products fortified with folic acid—breads, cereals, cornmeal, flour, pasta and white rice

Source: MouthHealthy.org


Smile healthy school lunches

August 27, 2013

Children will be going back to school soon, and for parents, that means coming up with new ideas for packing school lunches. Steer clear of prepackaged foods, which are easy and convenient but full of sugar and additives that damage your child’s overall health as well as his/her dental health. Especially avoid packing lunches with foods like fruit snacks, juice boxes, and candy. These foods expose teeth to sugar, which over a long period of time leads to decay.

Start the school year off right by packing nutritious lunches that will keep your child’s mouth healthy.

Here are some healthy lunch ideas:

  • Fresh fruit (grapes, apple slices, berries, etc.)
  • Fresh vegetables (carrot sticks, cucumber, celery with peanut butter)
  • Low fat cheese
  • Bottled water (with fluoride added)
  • Low-fat white milk
  • Wraps with lean turkey, low-fat cheese, and veggies (such as lettuce, tomato, and/or cucumber)

Not only will healthier lunches help your child’s dental and overall heath, but a nutritious lunch will help them concentrate in the classroom.

 

Share your healthy lunch ideas in the comments below.