Ever heard the phrase, “you’ve gotta be cruel to be kind?” It has never been truer than when referring to gum disease treatments. Periodontal disease affects as much as 80% of US adults, but the way dental practitioners handle periodontal treatments may be part of the problem. Patients avoid periodontal treatment due to lack of treatment urgency, not fully understanding necessary treatments, and money. Many dentists hesitate to fully explain and recommend periodontal therapy because they fear patients will simply cancel appointments due to the added cost. Instead, dentists tend to try the “nice” approach – recommending periodontal appointments every three months but billing them as regular dental cleanings during six month checkups. However, by changing the focus of periodontal disease treatment to communicating clearly, emphasizing assessment and prevention, and working with patients to maximize insurance benefits, dentists can better equip patients to receive the dental care they need.
Continue reading Do Nice Dentists Finish Last? – Do Dentists Have to be Cruel to be Kind?
2014 is rapidly coming to a close, and New Year’s Day is just around the corner. People from all around the world are coming up with ideas for their New Year’s resolutions, hoping to make this the year they make great strides toward self-improvement and better health. As we all prepare to welcome 2015 in style, we’d like to take a few moments to suggest one resolution that is not only easy to keep but incredibly rewarding as well.
Dental Checkups for the Whole Family
Biannual checkups and cleanings are critical components of any oral hygiene regimen. They present you with the perfect opportunity to ask your dentist any questions you may have about your teeth and gums, as well as any other concerns you may have at the time. These simple visits also include a thorough exam and cleaning, two things your teeth desperately need to stay healthy for life.
Unfortunately, many people still believe that it’s fine to skip out on their routine checkups because they haven’t noticed any problems that warrant a dental visit. The problem with that line of thinking is that not every oral health concern presents with noticeable symptoms. The early stages of gum disease, for example, may be virtually undetectable. Small cavities – particularly those that form between the teeth – may be difficult to see or feel until they have progressed to a more advanced stage of decay. Even a root canal infection may slip under your radar without the practiced eyes of a dentist to spot the signs with a detailed x-ray.
The great news about dental checkups is that they are covered by most dental insurance plans; you may not have to pay a single penny to get your teeth cleaned by a dedicated professional!
Make the Smart Resolution Today!
While vowing to eat healthily, save money, and get in shape are all viable and popular resolutions, we suggest placing more emphasis on your oral health this year as well. Your mouth serves as a portal to the rest of your body, and the status of your teeth and gums can potentially affect your overall health. This New Year’s Eve, make the decision to treat your smile well with routine preventive visits at your local dental office. You’ll be glad you did.
When you think of summer, you probably think of swimming pools, cookouts, and sunshine — but do you also think of your oral health? During the summer, there are actually things that you should keep in mind when it comes to your smile. Armed with some information, though, you can have a fun summer while maintaining beautiful and healthy teeth.
Did you know that swimming pools can have an effect on your teeth?
The chemicals in swimming pools can lead to discoloration of your smile if you’re exposed for long enough. Research has shown that people who spent more than 6 hours a week in swimming pools ended up with discolored front teeth. The reason is the higher pH level of the water, which beaks down proteins in saliva and leave a brownish stain on your teeth. If the pool’s pH balance isn’t properly cared for, the water can also soften enamel, leading to an increased risk of decay and damage. Luckily, trips to the dentist for regular cleanings and fluoride treatments can combat both of these problems!
Summertime Foods and Beverages…and Your Smile
During the summer, you’re probably going to attend a lot of parties, and with parties come a variety of beverages and snacks. Summertime drinks include soda, sports drinks, white wine, beer, and lemonade, and these drinks are loaded with sugar. A simple tip for counteracting the effects of these beverages, however, is to rinse your mouth with water regularly throughout the party. But don’t brush your teeth too soon after consuming acidic beverages. These drinks can soften enamel, and brushing while the enamel is soft can do more damage. Wait at least an hour before you brush!
Party foods can be dark in color and full of sugar as well. Dark foods contribute to stained teeth, and we all know what happens when you eat too much sugar! Cavities! But by rinsing your mouth after eating these dark and sugary foods, you can avoid staining and cavities — and a trip to the dentist during your summer for teeth whitening and a checkup can give your smile a boost!
It’s pretty simple to keep your smile in shape during these summer months. Brushing, flossing, rinsing after food or drink, and regular trips to the dentist can help keep you looking and feeling your best. Now you just have to figure out how to stay cool!
Hearing that the dentist screens for oral cancer at your checkups may surprise you. True, oral cancer may not be talked as much as other types of cancer, but make no mistake: if it’s not caught early, it’s often deadly. With a high treatment success rate in cases where the cancer was spotted and diagnosed early, it’s clear why your dentist makes screening a regular part of your dental visits. Continue reading Arm Yourself with the Facts About: Oral Cancer