Juneau Category

5 Ways to Keep Your Teeth Healthy in 2015


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  1. Eat a well-balanced diet.

It can be easy to resort to fast food, soda, and unhealthy snacks. However, these fast food eating habits can have a negative impact on your oral health. Try choosing foods without processed sugars and starches, and select healthy options like fruits and vegetables as often as possible.

  1. Exercise regularly.

Science has shown that people with a healthy and active lifestyle are far less likely to develop periodontal disease such as gingivitis and other advanced gum diseases. Plus you will feel better and smile more often!

  1. Brush and floss every day.

Days can get busy, you can get tired, and it can be easy to forget to brush and floss your teeth from time to time. However, skipping brushing your teeth and flossing for even just one night can allow plaque to form and harden on your teeth, leading to tooth decay, cavities, and gum disease.

  1. Minimize risks.

There are a number of activities that can put your mouth at risk of tooth decay, gum disease and oral cancer. Smoking can cause yellowing of the teeth, periodontal disease, tooth loss, and even cancer. Excessive alcohol consumption can also cause the mouth to become dry and dehydrated which allows for harmful bacteria to thrive. Try to cut back on these habits as much as possible in order to benefit your oral health.

  1. Visit the dentist at least twice.

It is important to visit the dentist at least every six months to stay on top of your dental health and make sure your smile stays in excellent working order.

THE DANGERS OF TEETH CLENCHING


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Teeth are designed to fit together smoothly, with the top and bottom teeth touching only when chewing. We all clench our teeth to some degree; it is a natural result of stress or anger, for example. However, frequent unnatural clenching or grinding of the teeth is the result of a condition called bruxism. An estimated 20% of the population suffers from this condition, which can cause dental health problems.

When you clench your teeth tightly together, you are putting a lot of stress on your teeth (average healthy human molars can produce about 200 pounds of force). This pressure and stress can cause microfractures or even large cracks in your teeth.

Frequent grinders can expect their tooth enamel to wear away at a rate 6 times faster than those who don’t suffer from bruxism. Bruxism can also lead to side effects such as jaw pain, recessed gums, and frequent headaches.

If you suffer from bruxism, we provide professional treatment solutions at Alaska Dental Arts. If you suspect that you may be grinding or clenching your teeth, we encourage you to schedule an appointment with to help determine the cause of your bruxism. Possible treatments may include custom mouth guards, special exercises, medication, or surgery in extreme cases.

Freshen Your Breath


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Bad breath can ruin a date, cause co-workers to avoid you, and generally be an unwelcomed nuisance. Here are some ways that you can tackle your bad breath and start down the road to minty freshness.

Avoid Garlic and Onions:

Foods like garlic and onions can be smelled on the breath for up to three days after consumption. The odors from these foods are absorbed into the blood stream and then enter the lungs. Other strong smelling offenders include pastrami, curry, horseradish, and tuna.

Visit the Dentist Regularly:

It’s important that you have your teeth professionally cleaned at least twice a year in order to maintain a healthy mouth. Removing the hardened plaque and tartar from your teeth can enhance your breath as well as detect any disease or infection.

Brush and Floss:

This tip might seem obvious, but it can make a huge difference. Be mindful of how long you are brushing; we recommend that you brush for at least 2-3 minutes twice a day. When you are brushing, don’t forget to brush your tongue and the roof of your mouth. Don’t skip flossing, either, as the food particles and bacteria that get stuck between your teeth cause bad breath.

Don’t Skimp on Vitamin C:

Foods that are high in Vitamin C are great at killing bad bacteria in your mouth. Try eating foods like broccoli, bell peppers, spinach and berries.

Drink More Water:

Drinking water helps to produce more saliva which fights bad bath. The smell-producing bacteria thrive when your mouth is dry. Drinking water also helps dislodge particles that are stuck between your teeth.

Chew Sugarless Gum:

Chewing gum can dislodge the food particles that may be stuck in your mouth and stimulates salivation. Saliva is a built-in bacteria fighting remedy that helps eliminate bad breath.

Avoid Sugar and Alcohol:

Drinking alcohol dries out your mouth, which helps the bad smelling bacteria to thrive. Allowing sugars to linger in your mouth also helps produce smelly bacteria.

Quit Smoking:

Tobacco use fills your mouth with chemicals that can cause oral diseases, and it also dries out the mouth which helps bacteria to flourish.

Don’t Skip Meals:

It’s common to have bad breath when you are dieting or if you skip meals. Chewing food increases the amount of saliva you produce which fights bad breath. Skipping meals causes the mouth to remain dry for longer periods of time and increases bacteria growth and bad breath.

Use Mouthwash For Emergencies:

Using a mouthwash can provide temporary relief from bad breath and can help kill bacteria that are causing your breath to stink. For best results, you should swish the mouthwash in your mouth for 30 seconds to a minute before spitting it out.

Halloween Candy


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October is National Dental Hygiene Month, but it is also Halloween season as well. As a general rule, eating candy on a regular basis (especially for children wearing braces), but we realize it is asking a lot for children to completely forego Halloween. In order to minimize the amount of damage to teeth and braces, we have compiled a list of popular candies and let you know which candies will be better for teeth and which to avoid. Chewy, sticky candies are among the worst offenders for causing cavities. The chewy candy can also get stuck deep in your teeth and braces, and they cause significant damage to your teeth.

Some popular chewy candies to avoid include:

Skittles

Taffy

Caramel

Starburst

Bubble Gum

Tootsie Rolls

Hard candies can be better as long as you do not bite down or chew on them. Chewing on them can cause the hard sugars to get stuck in your teeth as well. Also, in many younger children with braces, the temptation to bite can be too great, so these should be avoided in that case. Hard candies can also cause stains to your teeth as well if you suck on them too often. As a general rule, candies that stain your tongue can also cause stains on your teeth.

Some popular hard candies that fall into this category:

Suckers

Jolly Ranchers

Gobstoppers/Jawbreakers

Strawberry Hard Candies

Soft chocolate candies are the best option for treating your teeth right this Halloween. The more it melts in your mouth, the less likely it is to get stuck and cause more damage. Luckily, chocolate is one of the most popular Halloween candies, so you won’t be missing out on too much!

Some popular soft chocolates include:

Reese’s Cups

Hershey’s Milk Chocolate

Kit Kat

Three Musketeers

M&M’s can fall into this category if you let them melt in your mouth rather than bite into them right away. Remember, always use discretion when eating any candy this Halloween, and remember to indulge in moderation. You should always brush your teeth after eating your candy as well. Alaska Dental Arts wishes everyone a safe and have a happy Halloween!

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