Posts tagged “oral health”

Taking Care of Gum Disease: What We Can Do to Help

Did you know that gum disease is the most common cause of tooth loss in adults living in Great Britain? Gum disease can be very serious, but the good news is that it is preventable. Here are some tips to help you protect your gums and some more information about the services we offer to prevent and treat gum disease.

What you can do at home

Gum disease occurs when bacteria present in plaque irritates the gums. This causes them to become red, swollen, and sore. Many people first suspect that they may have gum disease when they notice traces of blood after spitting when they clean their teeth. To prevent gum disease, the best thing you can do is try and eliminate the chances of plaque forming in the first place. Brushing twice-daily and daily flossing help to remove bacteria and food debris before they can combine with saliva to form plaque. Your diet is also really important. Try and make sure that you stick to your recommended daily intake of sugar and avoid snacking throughout the day.

We also recommend attending regular check-ups. Our dentists are trained to detect the very early warning signs of gum disease, and they can address potential problems before they become more advanced. Ideally, we recommend 6-12 monthly checks. However, if you notice symptoms, call and book an appointment as soon as possible.

Treating gum disease

In the early stages, gum disease (gingivitis) is relatively easy to manage. However, if it is left to progress, it can cause irreparable damage to the gums. The bone tissue, which supports the teeth and gums also becomes damaged, and this results in the teeth becoming loose and eventually falling out. Treatment for advanced gum disease (periodontitis) involves long-term management, frequent cleaning and plaque and tartar removal treatments and sometimes even surgery.

If you’re keen to find out more about gum disease, call us today.

What To Eat on a Night Out to Keep Your Teeth Safe

Summer is coming, and many of us will be looking forward to enjoying nights on the town that don’t involve shivering while you wait for a taxi or trying desperately to avoid downpours as you leave a bar. If you’re planning a night out for a special occasion or you’re catching up with old friends over a drink or two, spare a thought for your teeth. Many of the treats we tend to indulge in after a night out are laden with sugar. Here are some healthier options to get your teeth into:

Whole grain toast: toast is a staple post-night out snack. White bread certainly isn’t the worst thing you can eat, but try and make sure you opt for wholemeal bread, as it has lower sugar content. Wholemeal bread also contains more fibre, which is good for your digestive health.

Dairy products: many drinks are acidic, so tucking into a snack or meal that contains dairy products is beneficial for your teeth. Milky drinks, cheese, and yoghurts are good sources of calcium, which is important for strong bones and teeth, but they also have a high pH value. Dairy products neutralise acids in the mouth, reducing the risk of enamel erosion.

Strawberries: if you fancy something sweet when you get home, don’t reach for the biscuit tin or open a bag of sweets. Instead, raid the fruit bowl and treat yourself to some juicy strawberries. Strawberries are rich in vitamin C, which is good for your gums, and the rough skin also acts as a natural stain remover. Strawberries also contain malic acid, which whitens the teeth.

When you’ve been out for a few drinks, it can be tempting to indulge in some unhealthy snacks when you get in. The next day, you may regret your choices, especially if you wake up with toothache or an upset stomach. Try and stick to healthy options like those listed above, and don’t forget to drink plenty of water.

Don’t ignore It! Why you need to take care of Dental Emergencies Immediately

Any of us are ostriches when it comes to our health. We tend to bury our heads in the sand, and hope that whatever symptoms we have disappear. Sometimes, problems subside without any need for treatment, but often, ignoring warning signs is the worst course of action. If you have dental troubles, it’s always best to see your dentist sooner rather than later.

Why is it important to tackle dental emergencies?

With any health problem, there’s always a risk of the situation getting worse the longer you leave it. If you have dental issues, something that may be simple to treat and manage could spiral into something a lot more severe. Take gum disease, for example. In the early stages, dentists can manage gum disease effectively with good oral hygiene and cleaning treatments. However, if gum disease is left untreated, it can develop into advanced gum disease, known as periodontal disease, which causes irreversible damage to your gums and the bone tissue beneath. A problem that could have been treated fairly easily can end up costing you your teeth.

If you have toothache, this may be a sign that you have a cavity or a developing infection. If you see your dentist, you can prevent any further damage, and you’ll also feel a lot more comfortable.

If you think you may have a problem with your teeth, for example, a broken or chipped tooth, or you have severe toothache or sore gums, seek advice from your dentist. They can have a look, and suggest treatment options. In some cases, there may be nothing to worry about, but it’s always better to be safe than sorry.

If you need urgent attention outside of normal opening hours, we have got your back! We offer 24-hour emergency dental care for all your dental needs. We recommend routine check-ups every 6-9 months. However, we strongly advise patients to get in touch if there are any issues between scheduled appointments.

Five Ways to Deal with a Broken Tooth On a Night Out

From time to time, accidents happen. One minute you’re having a wonderful time with your friends on the dance floor, the next you’ve taken a tumble. If you’ve slipped or fallen and broken a tooth, or you’ve chipped a tooth trying to open a bottle, you may need emergency dental treatment. If you think you may have a broken tooth on a night out, here are 5 steps you should take.

  1. Avoid trying to repair the tooth yourself: it can be tempting to channel your inner dentist, and attempt some DIY running repairs, but it’s always best to leave dental repairs to the experts. If you try and re-implant the fragment of tooth, you may do more harm than good.
  2. Locate the missing tooth fragment: if you’ve lost a section of the tooth, try and find it. If a large part of the tooth has broken off, it may be possible for your dentist to save the tooth if you can get to a clinic fast enough.
  3. Cover the tooth in milk: if you can find a restaurant or bar that is open late, ask them very nicely for a glass of milk, and store the tooth fragment in the glass until you can see a dentist.
  4. Call your dentist: the sooner you can see a dentist, the better.
  5. Avoid touching the root of the tooth: if you’ve lost the entire tooth, avoid touching the root section, and keep hold of the crown at all times.

Dental practices tend to have set opening hours, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get the assistance you need if you have a dental emergency. Give us a call, whatever the time of day or night, and we’ll do our best to see you as soon as possible.

Five Foods Your Teeth Don’t Want You to Eat

Most of us know all too well the devastating impact sugar can have on our health. Although these dangers are nothing new, dentists are as keen as ever to warn against eating too many enamel enemies.

Sugar is a real baddie because it causes the bacteria in our mouths to release nasty plaque acids that erode our tooth enamel. When tooth enamel becomes thinner, it can’t be regenerated, so we’re more at risk of icky infections. Here are five foods to avoid if you want to keep your tooth enamel good and strong:

Cakes

Sadly, some of the nation’s favourite foods and drinks are overflowing with sugar and cakes are no exception. These indulgent treats are the bees knees, but if you’ve ever baked one yourself or been brave enough to read the nutrition label on a shop bought slice, you’ll know exactly how much sugar goes into these decadent delights.

Crisps

Although a savoury snack, crisps are full of starchy carbs that eventually convert into sugar. Crisps can also get wedged in the cracks between our teeth and this makes plaque formation more likely.

 Chewy sweets

Chewy sweets are not just full of sugar, they also get stuck in the pits and grooves of our teeth, letting pesky plaque reign ruin over our mouths.

 Sports drinks

Sports drinks are often marketed as healthy, but your teeth wouldn’t agree. Many of them have as much sugar in them as fizzy soft drinks and this doesn’t just increase your risk of tooth decay and gum disease. It’s also linked with a higher risk of serious health complications like diabetes.

 Wine

A popular after-work tipple, wine also spells bad news for our teeth. This alcoholic beverage is very acidic, which means it has the power to erode enamel something rotten. It’s also a big tooth stainer – and that’s white wine as well as red!

The Different Types of Gum Disease

We’ve all heard of gum disease, but many of us don’t know much about the different types, or what to do about it when it strikes. Luckily, we’re on hand to talk you through the ins and outs and offer our expert advice to anyone suffering with poorly gums.

Types of gum disease

Gingivitis: This is gum disease in its mildest form and is caused by plaque irritating the gums.

Periodontitis: This is a more severe form of gum disease and signs include the gums pulling away from the teeth.

Acute Necrotising Ulcerative Gingivitis (ANUG): If periodontitis isn’t treated, this is what you might end up with. This very severe form of gum disease can cause your teeth to fall out.

What are the signs of gum disease

At first, many people don’t even realise they’ve got gum disease. It can start off pain and symptom-free, which is why it’s important to see a dentist every six to nine months. They’ll be able to spot hidden signs and stop gum disease in its tracks.

Gingivitis starts off with bleeding gums when you brush your teeth, and they might feel a bit swollen or look red. If you don’t get this sorted, periodontitis will show its face. This can cause wobbly teeth, nasty abscesses and an unpleasant taste in your mouth. When ANUG makes an appearance, you might experience smelly breath, bleeding ulcers and receding gums. You might also feel generally poorly and run down.

How is gum disease treated?

This all sounds horrible, doesn’t it? Well the good news is, there are treatments available for early stage gum disease and as long as that gets treated, you don’t need to worry about the really nasty stuff. Gingivitis can be banished with a good scaling session. This involves your dentist or hygienist cleaning your teeth with a special toothpaste, an electric toothbrush and a funny instrument called a scaler. Your dentist might also suggest using antiseptic mouthwash to stop those gums from bleeding.

For severe gum disease, surgery is often the answer. But this is only really carried out in rare circumstances.

You can keep gum disease at bay by making sure your dental hygiene routine is on point. And don’t forget those regular check-ups!

The Ultimate Teeth Cleaning Treatment

Nothing feels better than smooth, clean teeth and what better way to start the summer months than with a clean bill of oral health? We encourage our patients to maintain good oral hygiene at home, but nothing beats the feeling of an intensive cleaning treatment. Our expert hygienists will give your smile a healthy glow and banish harmful bacteria to help you lower the risk of decay and gum disease.

What do hygienists do?

Dental hygienists are experts in oral hygiene. They provide a range of hygiene and preventative treatments that help to lower the risk of oral diseases and keep the teeth looking strong, healthy and shiny.

Our dental hygienists play a very important role in the treatment of gum disease, but a visit to the hygienist can be beneficial for all patients, even those with good oral health. For patients who have a high risk of gum disease and those who have been diagnosed with severe gum disease, regular hygiene sessions can help to prevent the condition from getting worse.

Hygiene treatments

Our hygienists provide a range of services for patients of all ages, including preventative treatments, cleaning treatments such as scale and polish and gum disease management. Our hygienists are also available to offer advice about oral hygiene and teeth cleaning and to help with issues such as healthy eating and giving up or cutting down smoking.

Why is dental hygiene so important?

Good dental hygiene is important for keeping your teeth and gums healthy, but it also plays a role in maintaining good general health. A number of studies have now suggested a connection between oral and general health and gum disease has been found to increase the risk of general health conditions, including strokes and heart disease, as bacteria from the mouth is able to travel through the bloodstream, contributing to harmful effects in other areas of the body.

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