Posts for: April, 2017
The food we eat not only provides us energy, but it also supplies nutrients to help the body remain healthy. The most important of these nutrients are minerals and tiny organic compounds called vitamins.
While all of the thirteen known vitamins and eleven minerals play a role in overall health, a few are especially important for your mouth. For example, vitamins D and K and the minerals calcium and phosphorus are essential for strong teeth. Another mineral, fluoride, helps fortify enamel, which can deter tooth decay.
Other vitamins and minerals serve as antioxidants, protecting us against molecules called free radicals that can damage cellular DNA and increasing our risk of cancer (including oral). Vitamins C and E and the mineral selenium fall into this category, as well as zinc for DNA repair.
We acquire these nutrients primarily in the foods we eat. But for certain people like older adults or pregnant or nursing women a healthy diet may not be enough. Any person who can't get enough of a particular vitamin or mineral should take a supplement to round out their nutritional needs.
If you don't have a condition that results in a nutrient deficiency, you may not see that much benefit from taking a supplement. In fact, taking too much of a dietary supplement could harm your health. For example, some studies have shown ingesting too much supplemental Vitamin E could increase the risk of heart failure or gastrointestinal cancer. And some dietary supplements can interact poorly with drugs like blood thinners or ibuprofen.
The best way to get the vitamins and minerals your body — and mouth — needs is to eat a healthy diet. Dairy products like fortified milk are a good way to get vitamin D, as well as calcium and phosphorus. Fruits and vegetables are a good source of Vitamin C. And while you can take in fluoride from toothpaste or other oral hygiene products, you'll also find it in seafood and tea.
While good oral hygiene and regular dental visits are necessary for dental health, your diet can also make a difference. Be sure you're getting all the nutrients your teeth and gums need.
If you would like more information on the role of diet in oral health, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Vitamins & Dietary Supplements.”
Find out if mouthwash should be an essential part of your oral care routine each day.
You know that brushing and flossing are a regular and vital part of maintaining good oral health, but what about mouthwash? You may be wondering if this is the missing link to improving your oral health or whether it’s even necessary. Our Stamford, CT, general dentists Dr. Irina Pogosian and Dr. Thomas Ohlson provide a little insight into why people use mouthwash and whether you should consider it.
Most people use mouthwash to freshen their breath. There’s nothing wrong with that. In fact, having fresh breath is great; however, most mouthwashes just mask the underlying causes of bad breath such as plaque buildup or food stuck between teeth. Chronic bad breath could also signify other more serious issues like an infection. If you’ve been fighting bad breath for a while and you aren’t sure of the cause then it’s time to talk to our Stamford general dentist.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t use mouthwash or that you should stop if you do. In fact, mouthwash can be a great complement to the rest of your daily routine (as long as you don’t skimp on brushing and flossing as a result). It’s a good idea to swig some mouthwash prior to brushing and flossing. This can help to dislodge food and plaque from between teeth to give you an easier and more effective brushing and flossing session. Of course, if you don’t have mouthwash handy you can swig some water and it will have the same effect.
There are some therapeutic mouthwashes that our Stamford family dentist will recommend using if you need to increase your fluoride intake, if you deal with painful problems like canker sores, or if you have gum inflammation that could turn into gum disease. If this mouthwash contains xylitol, an ingredient known to reduce the amount of decay-producing bacteria present, then it’s a safe bet that it will help promote better oral health.
Whether you have questions about what kind of mouthwash you should be using or if you need to schedule your six-month cleaning, the dental experts at Comprehensive Dental Group in Stamford, CT, are here to help.
Everyone loves a concert where there's plenty of audience participation… until it starts to get out of hand.Â Recently, the platinum-selling band Fifth Harmony was playing to a packed house in Atlanta when things went awry for vocalist Camila Cabello. Fans were batting around a big plastic ball, and one unfortunate swing sent the ball hurtling toward the stage — and directly into Cabello's face. Pushing the microphone into her mouth, it left the “Worth It” singer with a chipped front tooth.
Ouch! Cabello finished the show nevertheless, and didn't seem too upset. “Atlanta… u wild… love u,” she tweeted later that night. “Gotta get it fixed now tho lol.” Fortunately, dentistry offers a number of ways to make that chipped tooth look as good as new.
A small chip at the edge of the tooth can sometimes be polished with dental instruments to remove the sharp edges. If it's a little bigger, a procedure called dental bonding may be recommended. Here, the missing part is filled in with a mixture of plastic resin and glass fillers, which are then cured (hardened) with a special light. The tooth-colored bonding material provides a tough, lifelike restoration that's hard to tell apart from your natural teeth. While bonding can be performed in just one office visit, the material can stain over time and may eventually need to be replaced.
Porcelain veneers are a more long-lasting solution. These wafer-thin coverings go over the entire front surface of the tooth, and can resolve a number of defects — including chips, discoloration, and even minor size or spacing irregularities. You can get a single veneer or have your whole smile redone, in shades ranging from a pearly luster to an ultra-bright white; that's why veneers are a favorite of Hollywood stars. Getting veneers is a procedure that takes several office visits, but the beautiful results can last for many years.
If a chip or crack extends into the inner part of a tooth, you'll probably need a crown (or cap) to restore the tooth's function and appearance. As long as the roots are healthy, the entire part of the tooth above the gum line can be replaced with a natural-looking restoration. You may also need a root canal to remove the damaged pulp material and prevent infection if the fracture went too far. While small chips or cracks aren't usually an emergency (unless accompanied by pain), damage to the tooth's pulp requires prompt attention.
If you have questions about smile restoration, please contact us and schedule an appointment. You can read more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Porcelain Veneers: Strength & Beauty As Never Before” and “Porcelain Crowns & Veneers.”