What Corrosive Foods Really Do to Your Teeth

Corrosive isn’t a word you want to hear in connection to your teeth, but the reality is you want to be smart in protecting your smile and oral health. Teeth are actually porous, which means that sugars and acids can easily get in and break enamel down or leave teeth discolored—and these consequences can show a lot sooner than you’d think.

Sugary foods and beverages promote bacterial growth that leads to decay, not to mention bad breath. Acidic items actually strip your mouth of its natural pH, which allows those same bad bacteria to grow. Acids also eat away at your tooth enamel, inviting decay and discoloration.

Corrosive foods: be careful of double and triple damage

Corrosive foods range the whole gamut of natural and artificial sugars, particularly in the form of hard or sticky sweets. Citrus fruits are a double-whammy, with loads of natural sugar on top of even more natural acid. Sour candies are about as bad as it gets, with artificial sugar, added citric acid and the sticky texture that bonds to your teeth doing damage until you work it off.

If you like chewing on ice, remember: water is healthy in any form, but anything that requires that much “bite” can damage enamel and even chip teeth.

Corrosive beverages: the unshakable

The beverages that are worst for your teeth are also the hardest to kick. Coffee and soda are not only loaded with sugars and caffeine, but are among the biggest culprits for staining teeth, too.

Anything with citric or other acids will also continue to strip your mouth of its natural pH and eat away at enamel. Alcohol strips your mouth of its pH balance and invites bacteria, especially consuming sugary mixed drinks. The worst alcohol for your smile, however, is probably wine, which stains brilliantly and in short time.

Indirect wear and tear: acid reflux

Even if you aren’t prone to acid reflux, foods that make you burp or provoke the heartburn you only occasionally get can add insult to injury in your oral care. Sodas are a common trigger of acid kick-back. Coffee, alcohol and citrus fruits are also high on the list.

The silver lining is that many of the foods and beverages that stain teeth are also the ones that damage enamel, strip pH and cause excessive burping or acid reflux. This means that you can cross some things resolutely off your list. However, other items are so intimately ingrained into your day-to-day that it’s painful to think about giving them up, as much as you want to stop your teeth from yellowing or rotting out.

The good news

Fortunately, there’s a way to keep your coffee consumption or sweet-tooth snacking without your teeth falling out of your head. If you’re already good about your morning and bedtime teeth brushing, how about a post-lunch scrub? And could you become one of the few who really flosses?

These foods are corrosive, and however nasty the word it’s a reality to face if you want to keep your teeth. If some of these foods and drinks could literally double as cleaning products, why let them sit on your teeth? Eat what you want, but only if you can take a couple minutes to floss and brush after.

Flossing is as important as brushing once you’ve consumed any of these caustic items, because it helps keep your gums healthy. As much as you think about your teeth, you have to remember that your gums are what hold your teeth in your head. Acidic foods and beverages can lead to receding gums, which is a clear problem if you want healthy teeth.

Stay serious about your oral hygiene. Think about what you put your teeth through, and care for them accordingly.

Read full post at What Corrosive Foods Really Do to Your Teeth

8 Tips For Safe Teeth Whitening

With so many teeth whitening products on the market, a bright smile is seemingly available to every one of us. And as much as we all want the sparkling smiles of Hollywood, new questions arise when it comes to the safety of these products and procedures. The simple answer is that teeth whitening is always safe when performed in a dental office under dentist supervision. But what about your other options?

Home remedies are safe when you follow instructions

As long as the instructions for home treatments are followed, side-effects are rare—though not absent. A percent of patients reports higher sensitivity in their teeth and gums after whitening. This and other side-effects are not common, but no one wants to be the one who suffers them. To give you a fair shake at avoiding them, we’ve provided you with some guidelines to help you brighten your smile without added risks.

  1. Consult with your dentist before undergoing any teeth whitening procedure, including the ones that can be performed at home. After a regular check-up and professional cleaning, tooth polishing is often enough to get that “shine” back, and you might leave satisfied. With your dentist’s review of your teeth, you’ll also discover whether there’s any decay, since your teeth need to be completely healthy in order for whitening products to be totally risk-free. Your dentist is also equipped to consult you on which method will work best for your teeth, and what other options you have that you hadn’t thought about.
  2. Choose your product wisely. Teeth whitening products that you can use at home often contain 15% carbamide peroxide, but this high concentration can be dangerous if you haven’t had your teeth whitened before. Select a product with less of this active ingredient if you can. If your teeth react well, you can switch to products with a higher concentration.
  3. Always stick to the package instructions. They are crafted around the trials and studies of that product, so rest assured that they’re written with your safety in mind. It’s important to adhere to the guidelines, as much for your health as to make sure the product works like it should.
  4. During and after the whitening application, avoid acidic drinks and food such as energizer drinks, coffee, tea, and citrus fruits. Tobacco is another big “no.” In general, any food that colors your teeth can have a greater negative impact while active whitening chemicals are at work.
  5. Come with realistic expectations. For example, dental fillings can’t be bleached with any whitening product, so if you notice inconsistencies along your dental restorations, this is to be expected. You can consider getting new fillings put in for greater consistency.
  6. Be prepared for potentially increased sensitivity of your teeth or gums. If this sensitivity becomes serious or interrupts eating habits, you should either change products or ask your dentist whether you should continue with whitening at all.
  7. Protect your teeth with fluorine after any whitening procedure. Fluorine is an element that aids dentin recovery, and is also ideal for eliminating bacteria and helping cavities to heal—or at least stymying the decay. There is a small concentration of fluorine in most toothpaste and mouthwash.

Don’t let yourself become addicted to tooth whitening, or go overboard with any treatment. If you’ve followed the instructions and see results, wait a while before you start with the process again. Once per month is more than enough, while professional treatment is recommended only once every six months.

First Appeared at: 8 Tips For Safe Teeth Whitening

Knocked out: Is there hope for lost teeth?

Whether by taking a fall or sustaining another physical injury to the mouth, especially among children, you could have a tooth knocked out of place in you jaw. This type of injury typically happens among single-rooted teeth, since multiple-rooted teeth have wider spread roots that better anchor them in the jaw and are protected further back in your mouth. In children, many instances of tooth loss are due to the unfinished maturation of their roots, whether in the permanent teeth that are still growing or in their temporary ones that have not yet fully degraded.

How teeth fall out

How can a knock-out happen?

We’ve listed the two typical situations that lead to tooth loss by way of “knock out.”

  1. As you probably guessed, a tooth is typically knocked out as a consequence of physical trauma: falling on your chin, sports accidents, getting a punch to the face, suffering a car accident, etc. When a traumatic incident happens, it’s critical that you react immediately. Your knocked-out tooth should be put in a container and kept in a moist environment, preferably the use of specialized liquids. When you aren’t in the place to purchase this type of material, regular milk is a solid substitute. You can even use your own saliva. You then go to the dentist’s office, where ideally the tooth can be cleaned and put back into place—but not all knocked-out teeth will be in good enough condition to replace to their sockets.
  2. Teeth are also occasionally deliberately knocked out, it cases where it is the only solution for its treatment. In such scenario, as soon as your tooth is professionally pulled out, the dentist initiates the required therapeutic process. After the therapy has been completed, your tooth is placed back into its socket. Following this type of removal in particular, your replaced tooth might be re-fixed to the surrounding teeth for added stability, though in cases of trauma this might be necessary, too.

Other sideeffects of knocked-out teeth

The biggest side-effect of knocked out teeth is contamination between the incident and replantation of tooth. All traumatically knocked-out teeth are immediately contaminated once they’re out of place, and their treatment requires antibiotics. The greatest chance of being able to replace your original tooth requires immediate cleaning, and leaving it in a wet, moist environment until you make it to your dentist. Letting the tooth fester in contamination or dry out too much risk damage that will render it unusable.

Replantation of a knockedout tooth

The time factor in replantation is crucial. Even under the best conditions, replantation will battle with a certain degree of resorption, or the body’s effort to suck the root of the tooth away from your exposed socket. If you pass more than two hours before replacing the tooth, resorption of the root becomes almost certain.

Replanted teeth are often fixed with the installation of a small wire to the tooth and its neighbors. The wire needs to cover at least one neighboring tooth on each side. After about two weeks, the wire is removed, and the dentist can check whether your replantation was a success.

You might not have even realized that knocked-out teeth can be replaced by the tooth itself, but if you take the right steps there’s a very good chance that your knocked-out tooth doesn’t have to be replaced by an implant. Be sure to wear mouth guards in contact sports, and keep your dentist’s number at the ready in case of other emergencies.

Originally Published at: Knocked out: Is there hope for lost teeth?

Dental Implants – Immediate Placement Or Not?

Dental implants are modern medicine’s permanent answer for lost teeth. Although there is no perfect substitute for a natural tooth, after centuries of man’s ingenuity we can say that contemporary implants are the best solution for replacing teeth and all their functionality. 

The timing of dental implants

What is a dental implant?

A dental implant is specifically the replacement for the root of your tooth. However, with the crown of our teeth being the first thing we think of in a tooth’s anatomy, conversationally we’re usually referring to all three components of the implant: crown, abutment and the implant.

Depending on the nature of the original tooth coming out, placement of the implant can be immediate, early or delayed. In this article, we’re going to discuss when you might need an immediate implant placement.

When is immediate dental implantation recommended?

Immediate placement of a dental implant requires surgical intervention, where the implant is built into the bone tissue right after the extraction of your tooth. The reasons for immediate intervention vary from patient to patient, however there are a few commonalities. Regular cases requiring immediate replacement include: damaged teeth that can’t be restored appropriately, traumatic tooth loss with minimal damage to bone or soft tissues, and the inability of endodontic treatment.

Are there cases to avoid immediate dental implant placement?

If the part of the gums where your implant is needed is inflamed, your dentist will probably avoid placing the implant. In other cases, if the trauma behind the tooth loss caused a problematic bone deficit or loss to soft tissue, typically you’ll have to wait before implantation. Your dentist will keep these indications and others in mind, and consult with you on how best to get your full smile back in shape.

What about delayed implantation?

Delayed implantation represents the late placement of certain bone substitutes into the wound that was created by the loss of your tooth. These substitutes minimize atrophy to your bone tissue, and over time ready your jaw for placement of the implant.

Following treatment for bone substitute, you typically have to wait four to six months, giving your jaw enough time to form new bone. The implant is then built in that bone.

The advantages of immediate placement

The biggest advantage of immediate implantation is that your tooth is pulled and its substitute placed in the same procedure. This type of intervention is most convenient, and is the most common type of implantation.

Bear in mind that the best results sometimes require patience, especially when it comes to your teeth and overall oral health. The purpose of a dental implant is not just to fill in your smile, but to fill in for every role your teeth play—from holding the shape of your face and the placement of neighboring teeth, to eating and speaking. After centuries of practicing different types of dental implants, today’s solutions are more effective than ever before. The expertise your dentist can provide in the timing of your placement is another advantage to these state-of-the-art solutions.

This post was first published at Dental Implants – Immediate Placement Or Not?

Dental Implants – Immediate Placement Or Not?

Dental implants are modern medicine’s permanent answer for lost teeth. Although there is no perfect substitute for a natural tooth, after centuries of man’s ingenuity we can say that contemporary implants are the best solution for replacing teeth and all their functionality. 

The timing of dental implants

What is a dental implant?

 

A dental implant is specifically the replacement for the root of your tooth. However, with the crown of our teeth being the first thing we think of in a tooth’s anatomy, conversationally we’re usually referring to all three components of the implant: crown, abutment and the implant.

 

Depending on the nature of the original tooth coming out, placement of the implant can be immediate, early or delayed. In this article, we’re going to discuss when you might need an immediate implant placement.

 

When is immediate dental implantation recommended?

 

Immediate placement of a dental implant requires surgical intervention, where the implant is built into the bone tissue right after the extraction of your tooth. The reasons for immediate intervention vary from patient to patient, however there are a few commonalities. Regular cases requiring immediate replacement include: damaged teeth that can’t be restored appropriately, traumatic tooth loss with minimal damage to bone or soft tissues, and the inability of endodontic treatment.

 

Are there cases to avoid immediate dental implant placement?

 

If the part of the gums where your implant is needed is inflamed, your dentist will probably avoid placing the implant. In other cases, if the trauma behind the tooth loss caused a problematic bone deficit or loss to soft tissue, typically you’ll have to wait before implantation. Your dentist will keep these indications and others in mind, and consult with you on how best to get your full smile back in shape.

 

What about delayed implantation?

 

Delayed implantation represents the late placement of certain bone substitutes into the wound that was created by the loss of your tooth. These substitutes minimize atrophy to your bone tissue, and over time ready your jaw for placement of the implant.

 

Following treatment for bone substitute, you typically have to wait four to six months, giving your jaw enough time to form new bone. The implant is then built in that bone.

 

The advantages of immediate placement

 

The biggest advantage of immediate implantation is that your tooth is pulled and its substitute placed in the same procedure. This type of intervention is most convenient, and is the most common type of implantation.

 

Bear in mind that the best results sometimes require patience, especially when it comes to your teeth and overall oral health. The purpose of a dental implant is not just to fill in your smile, but to fill in for every role your teeth play—from holding the shape of your face and the placement of neighboring teeth, to eating and speaking. After centuries of practicing different types of dental implants, today’s solutions are more effective than ever before. The expertise your dentist can provide in the timing of your placement is another advantage to these state-of-the-art solutions.