Gum disease is a common dental concern, affecting millions of people each year. At Main Street Dental, our experienced dentists are here to help you prevent and treat gum disease. Read on to learn about its causes:
The cavity-causing bacteria in your mouth feed off simple sugars, and when you don't brush and floss regularly, this sugary film can build up on the surface of your teeth. The longer it is there, the more it grows until it eventually hardens into plaque - a sticky substance that clings to the surface of your teeth. If it isn't removed in a timely fashion, it will harden into tartar, a material that can only be removed by a professional cleaning. If this is allowed to happen, it can cause serious damage to your gums and teeth, leading to gum disease.
Even if you're brushing and flossing regularly, you still need to visit your dentist every six months for a checkup and cleaning so they can catch any potential problems before they become severe.
Your genes may have a lot to say about your risk for gum disease. For example, those with a family history of periodontal disease may be more prone to the condition themselves. That's because genetics may play a strong role in how susceptible someone might be to disease in general. While you can't change your genetic makeup, you can take steps to prevent dental problems. Brushing and flossing daily at home can help remove plaque that causes gum disease, and visiting the dentist for regular cleanings and exams can give your teeth the attention they need to stay healthy and strong.
The condition known as smoker's periodontitis is a type of gum disease that occurs in people who smoke cigarettes or use other forms of tobacco. This type of gum disease causes severe damage to the gums and other structures in the mouth. Plaque buildup is more severe for those who use tobacco products. In addition, smokers are at a higher risk of developing oral cancer. It's never too late to quit using tobacco, so call your dentist today to schedule a consultation to discuss quitting smoking once and for all.
When you're pregnant, the body produces hormones that increase your chance of developing gingivitis and gum disease. These hormonal changes can cause the gums to become inflamed or irritated very easily. Once the baby is born and the hormone levels stabilize, your gums should return to normal and heal from the condition. However, if pregnancy hormones were the cause of your gum issues, you may develop them again if you become pregnant again.
If the mother has poor oral health during pregnancy, this can also affect the health of the baby. An unhealthy mouth can introduce bacteria to the bloodstream, which is then transferred to the baby through the umbilical cord. The harmful bacteria can then cause premature birth, low birth weight, and other health issues for the child. This is referred to as "pregnancy gingivitis."
Many commonly prescribed medications list dry mouth as a side effect, which can lead to gum disease. A dry mouth is a condition in which the mouth produces less saliva than normal, which can leave the mouth vulnerable to bacteria, plaque buildup, and tooth decay. If you're currently taking medications and notice more instances of gingivitis or bleeding gums, speak with your doctor about alternative medications that may treat your condition without causing a dry mouth. In some cases, you may simply need to increase your water intake to combat the side effect of dry mouth.
For the best dental care tailored to your unique needs, visit Main Street Dental at 3195 S Main St Ste 225, South Salt Lake, UT 84115, or call (801) 467-2255.
Going to the dentist can be an anxiety-provoking situation for many people. But your dentist is there to help you. He or she understands that going to the dentist can cause anxiety, and they will do everything they can to help you feel more comfortable. Speak up about your fears The more you communicate with your dentist about your anxiety, the better he or she can plan for your visit and relieve your discomfort. Share with your dentist what you’re nervous about and discuss ways to ease those fears. For example, if the sound of the drill triggers you, let the dentist know ahead of time that you’ll be more comfortable if a mouthguard is used during your appointment. If the thought of pain keeps you from visiting the dentist, discuss whether sedation dentistry is right for you. Agree on a signal Use the hand signals for “stop” and “go.” You can also indicate when you want to take a break from the procedure. Hand signals can also be used to indicate situations that you are not comfortable with, like the use of certain tools or materials. This will allow you to feel more in control of the situation. Take a trusted person with you If the thought of going to the dentist makes you nervous or anxious, consider bringing someone you trust. This way, you will have someone you know and trust to talk to during the appointment. You can also trust that this person will speak up on your behalf if there is something you are uncomfortable with being done. Your companion can also be there to offer moral support if you need it. Bring distractions Bringing a distraction like a book or a magazine can help to keep you busy during your appointment. If music relaxes you, bring it too! Ask your dentist if they allow headphones; if so, you can drown out the noise of the office and get comfortable in your favorite tunes while you sit in the dental chair. Consider sedation dentistry If anxiety or fear is keeping you from the dentist, we can help relieve your discomfort with sedation dentistry. There are several different types of sedation available depending on your needs and preferences. Nitrous oxide is a gas that you breathe in through a mask during your procedure. It can help you relax but wears off quickly when you stop breathing in the gas. Oral conscious sedation involves taking a small pill about an hour before your treatment. You will still be awake and alert, but you may not remember much about your procedure after you get home. In addition to nitrous oxide and oral conscious sedation, we also offer IV/intravenous sedation. This method puts you into a deep state of relaxation through the use of an IV drip that can be adjusted as needed throughout your procedure. You will be monitored the entire time to ensure your safety. All of these methods can help ease your anxiety and fear of the dentist so you can have a more relaxed visit with us. Contact us today to learn more! For the best dental care tailored to your unique needs, visit Main Street Dental at 3195 S Main St Ste 225, South Salt Lake, UT 84115, or call (801) 467-2255.
The holiday season is one of the busiest times of the year. With shopping, cooking, and family gatherings, it can be easy to neglect your oral health. AVOID SUGARY TREATS Sweets and treats are common gifts during the holiday season, but not all are healthy for your teeth. Sticky candies and cakes cling to the teeth, promoting tooth decay and cavities. Bacteria in the mouth feed on the sugars in the foods and produce acid as a byproduct which weakens tooth enamel. Brushing soon after consuming sugary treats can help clear food particles from the teeth and prevent bacteria from developing into plaque. If you do consume sugary treats, brush them after eating them to help remove food debris and reduce the risk of decay and cavities. And remember, moderation is key. It’s fine to indulge in a few holiday goodies, but eat them in moderation, so you don’t harm your smile. DON’T SKIP YOUR DENTAL APPOINTMENTS Although the holidays are supposed to be a happy time, they can bring on a lot of stress. For many people, this can lead to unhealthy habits like skipping meals or not getting enough sleep. However, it is important to keep up with your regular oral hygiene routine and keep up your dentist appointments during this time as well. Skipping your dental treatments can actually make your holidays more stressful and add extra anxiety to your life. BRUSH AND FLOSS REGULARLY During the holiday season, make sure you keep up with your daily oral hygiene rituals, such as brushing twice a day, flossing at least once, and using an antimicrobial mouthwash to strengthen your teeth against plaque buildup. That way, you’ll be able to enjoy more delicious foods without damaging your teeth and gums. If you’re attending a holiday party this year or receiving sweets as gifts, don’t stress out too much about overindulging in a sweet treat. Monitor how often you indulge by staying mindful of the amount of time between snacks. Rinse with water after eating sugary foods and drinks to rinse away debris and bacteria that can erode tooth enamel and cause cavities. Then you can brush your teeth as soon as possible after snacking to help remove food particles from your mouth and prevent tooth decay. Make sure your children also brush their teeth at least twice a day for two minutes at a time with fluoride toothpaste. Remind them to use a gentle circular motion to clean their teeth and gums and rinse their mouth with water after each meal or snack. For the best dental care tailored to your unique needs, visit Main Street Dental at 3195 S Main St Ste 225, South Salt Lake, UT 84115, or call (801) 467-2255.
You might be wondering why we're talking about something as seemingly simple as brushing your teeth. Well, let us tell you - maintaining good oral health is more than just having a pearly white smile. It plays a crucial role in keeping your overall health in tip-top shape. THE IMPORTANCE OF GOOD ORAL HEALTH Having good oral health goes far beyond just having a bright smile. It is an essential aspect of overall well-being that often gets overlooked. So why is it so important to prioritize your dental hygiene? First and foremost, maintaining good oral health helps prevent tooth decay and gum disease. Regular brushing and flossing remove plaque, which can lead to cavities if left unchecked. Additionally, gum disease can have serious consequences for your oral health, causing inflammation, bleeding gums, and even tooth loss. But the benefits extend beyond just your mouth. Research has shown that poor oral health is linked to several systemic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, respiratory infections, and even complications during pregnancy. This connection highlights the importance of properly caring for your teeth and gums. Furthermore, having healthy teeth allows you to enjoy a varied diet without discomfort or limitations in chewing ability. A nutritious diet plays a vital role in overall physical health and well-being. HOW TO MAINTAIN GOOD ORAL HEALTH Maintaining good oral health is essential for a healthy smile and overall well-being. By following some simple practices, you can keep your teeth and gums in excellent condition. * It's crucial to brush your teeth at least twice a day with fluoride toothpaste. Use gentle, circular motions, and don't forget to clean the back of your teeth as well. Additionally, make sure to replace your toothbrush every three to four months or sooner if the bristles become frayed. * Flossing is another vital step in maintaining good oral hygiene. Regular flossing helps remove plaque and food particles from between the teeth that a toothbrush cannot reach. Take about 18 inches of dental floss and gently glide it between each tooth using a back-and-forth motion. * In addition to brushing and flossing, incorporating mouthwash into your routine provides extra protection against bad breath-causing bacteria while also freshening up your breath. * Furthermore, choosing a healthy diet plays an important role in supporting oral health. Limit sugary snacks and beverages that contribute to cavities while opting for nutritious foods like fruits, vegetables, dairy products, and lean proteins that promote strong teeth. * Last but certainly not least importantly, remember regular visits to the dentist are crucial for preventive care as they can detect any potential issues early on before they progress into more significant problems. By adopting these habits into our daily lives, we can maintain good oral health, which will go hand-in-hand with our beautiful smiles! To learn more, visit Main Street Dental at 3195 S Main St Ste 225, South Salt Lake, UT 84115, or call (801) 467-2255.
Bad habits, such as nail biting, using teeth as tools, chewing gum, and frequent snacking, can negatively affect your oral health. These habits increase your risk of gum disease, tooth decay, jaw pain, and more. Here is how. Teeth-Clenching While some people may argue that teeth-grinding isn’t a habit, but a natural reflex during sleep, it can still be damaging to your teeth and jaw. In addition to wearing down your pearly whites, clenching or grinding can lead to chronic jaw pain, headaches, neck pain, earaches, and more. The pressure from clenching the teeth can cause the muscles around your jaw to become sore and fatigued, which can cause tension in your neck and face. This can also cause pain in the jaw muscles themselves, leading to discomfort and even locking the jaw completely shut. Thankfully, we can fit you with a mouthguard that can protect the teeth and jaws from this nightly habit. A custom-fitted mouthguard will be much more comfortable to wear than the stock ones you may find at the store. It will also wrap around your top and bottom teeth to provide the most protection possible from the pressure and friction from grinding. Nail Biting Nail biting is a very common bad habit. In fact, almost ten percent of people bite or pick at their nails! Picking and chewing on your nails not only causes unsightly yellowing, but it can also cause tooth sensitivity and even chipped or broken teeth. What’s more, the behavior can also pass germs from your nails to your mouth, putting you at risk of infection. Using Teeth As Tools Putting pressure on your teeth as tools isn’t good for them. Whether it’s opening packages with your teeth or using them to open bottles, this can cause unnecessary damage to your teeth. Furthermore, using your teeth as tools can chip or even break them. Try to avoid this behavior as much as possible. Instead, use a bottle opener or scissors when you need to open a package. Chewing Ice Cubes Ice may feel good when it gets inside a sore tooth, but it’s a bad idea for oral health. The ice and chewing motion can cause damage to your teeth by chipping or potentially cracking your enamel. The cold temperature also causes blood vessels to constrict and send less blood to the nerves in the teeth. Using Tobacco Smoking and using other forms of tobacco are some of the worst habits for your oral health, and quitting can be one of the best things you can do to preserve your teeth. In addition to lung cancer and a host of respiratory issues, smoking can also cause tooth decay, gum disease, tooth loss, and more. Smokers are at a higher risk of oral cancer as well. While quitting can be difficult, it is well worth the effort to protect your health. Those who quit smoking have a much better chance of reversing the effects of tobacco use on their teeth than those who continue to smoke. Quitting cold turkey is not ideal, though, so ask your dentist about the best cessation method for you. Not Brushing Your Teeth Regularly We can all admit to skipping our nightly brushing routine occasionally, but doing so on a fairly regular basis can be detrimental to your oral health. When you skip out on flossing and brushing, oral bacteria build up in your mouth. This bacterial buildup can lead to tooth decay and the erosion of your enamel over time. Once enamel is lost from your teeth, it cannot be replaced! Avoiding regular brushing also leads to gum disease, which is the leading cause of tooth loss in adults. Gum disease also increases the risk of other medical conditions like heart disease and diabetes. For the best dental care tailored to your unique needs, visit Main Street Dental at 3195 S Main St Ste 225, South Salt Lake, UT 84115, or call (801) 467-2255.