Last updated 1 year ago
If you regularly have bad breath, even when you avoid smelly foods like garlic and onions, you may feel self-conscious or uncomfortable in social situations. If you suffer from halitosis, learn how simple steps and regular oral care can tackle the problem at its source:
Halitosis is the scientific name for bad breath, which can stem from several different causes. It can be a symptom of an infection, a liver or kidney ailment, or a buildup of bacteria in the mouth.
There are several causes for bad breath. People with dry mouth often have bad breath, because saliva is necessary for cleaning odorous bacteria from the mouth. Some bad breath is caused by the food you eat, in which case the problem is temporary and can be masked by mouthwashes, mints, or gum. Infrequent eating as the result of dieting or limited access to food during the day can also cause bad breath. Infrequent brushing and flossing also allows bits of food to remain between teeth or in the gums, collecting bacteria and creating odor. Chronic halitosis is generally caused by bacteria in the mouth, much of which gathers on the tongue.
- How Are My Treatment Options?
Start by practicing good oral hygiene habits. Brush thoroughly twice a day, floss once a day, and schedule tooth cleanings with your dentist twice a year. While brushing your tongue can help with bad breath, it is less effective than using a tongue scraper, which removes bacteria from your mouth as opposed to pushing it around. If the problem persists, talk to your dentist to try to pinpoint the cause and determine a treatment plan.
For more information about your oral health, contact the professionals at Belmont Dental Group. We offer a variety of dental services and specialize in sedation dentistry. Call us today at (617) 484-2431 for more information on our Belmont-area practice.
Last updated 1 year ago
Forty years ago, public fluoridation projects brought the children’s decay rate to a near standstill. Suddenly the incidence of decay in children is rising rapidly. The burden of dental decay is not evenly spread among children. Those who are getting cavities are getting lots of them.
Welcome to National Dental Health Month, a public awareness effort of the American Dental Association. Most of our efforts concentrate on the dental health of children, the best predictor of their dental health as adults.
To understand why cavities are back big time, one must round up the usual suspects of the Sugar Mafia. The gang of dental perpetrators go under a bunch of aliases.
Perhaps the food label lists Agave Nectar, Barley Malt Syrup, Dextrin or Dextrose, Fructose, Glucose or corn syrup, Malt syrup, maltose, Raw Sugar, sorghum syrup, Treacle, Turbinado Sugar- I could go on and on- Attention parents!: this stuff is Sugar. It will rot your kids’ teeth and pressure the family budget.
My favorite Terms of Obfuscation are, “Organic” and “Evaporated Cane Juice”. Oh man, if I could lie like that I could have been a zillionaire on Wall Street. Hey Dad- evaporated cane juice is sugar, got it? Mom, not everything Organic is good for your kids. Tuberculosis is organic and all natural! Tell me, why would anyone think honey was OK for teeth?
Dr. Linda Nelson, a Pediatric Dental Specialist at Harvard says, “Beware of the hidden sugars in vanilla milk and juice boxes. These are beverages to be consumed with a wholesome meal. As snacks, they contain large amounts of sugar and are raising the decay rate in children.”
Gummy vitamins are candy in disguise. Chewy ‘energy’ bars can have four teaspoons of sugar.
The Nations’ dental bill for cavities in children is 4.5 billion dollars. 1.6 million School days are missed. It’s a serious, seriously expensive problem.
Still think ‘natural sugar’ is different than a candy bar? Ooooh, my head is hurting. Look, the sugar in an orange or a glass of milk comes with some wholesome nutrition. Consumed by children during three healthful meals and a couple of snacks, it’s no problem. Good food, reasonable oral hygiene sprinkled with a little Fluoride and your teeth will stay sunshiny. Boil something healthful down into syrup and it is no longer natural.
Wendy Elverson RD, LDN of Children’s Hospital suggests you learn to read the labels. She recommends parents go to caloriecount.about.com to learn about the foods their kids are eating. Brightly sweetened yogurts for children contain large amounts of sugar. Those fruit ropes from the Organic Grocer are a happy place for dental germs. Wendy says, “How about a cheese stick instead?” She says nuts and sunflower seeds are good foods to have at home, providing no one is allergic. How’s this for some common sense advice from Wendy the Nutritionist, “Choose foods with a short list of ingredients.”?
Folks, we are being misled by the Leprechauns of food labeling. Let’s get smarter than them.
Dr. Jim Nager is a practicing dentist and resident of Belmont, and a Clinical Instructor at Harvard. Questions of a general nature can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Last updated 1 year ago
Though dentures and bridges offer a fairly effective solution for missing teeth, they can be clunky and make eating or speaking difficult. Dental implants replace missing or damaged teeth permanently and mimic the look and feel of natural teeth. A metal post creates a sturdy base for a crown, which is attached to the screw to function fully like a natural tooth. The process is a surgical and generally permanent solution. Dental implants can replace individual or multiple teeth or support bridges or dentures.
Depending on how many teeth you’ll be replacing, the process varies slightly, but in general, the first step is placing the metal post into your jaw. In the few months it can take for the bonding to occur between the implant and your bone, you will be given a temporary artificial tooth or teeth to wear. When you are ready, an abutment or post will be attached to the implant. After that, your replacement tooth, or crown, will be attached.
Caring for dental implants is much like caring for natural teeth. Make sure to brush and floss twice a day and visit your dentist regularly. Using a waterpik or similar water flossing device can be an excellent way to keep the gum line clean and free of infection. Your dentist will inform you if any additional care is necessary for your situation.
For more information about dental implants or other restorative dental procedures, contact the Belmont Dental Group. We perform restorative, general, and cosmetic dental procedures and specialize in sedation dentistry. Visit our locations in Belmont and Cambridge, or find out more by calling us at (617) 484-2431.
Last updated 1 year ago
Good oral hygiene goes a long way. Studies show that gum disease is far more prevalent in Americans than initially thought and this is dangerous for a few reasons. Oral health has implications for overall health and poor gum maintenance can damage teeth permanently.
The following guide offers a few steps that will help keep your gums healthy:
Brush: Dentists constantly stress the importance of brushing to remove the bacteria-packed plaque that causes gingivitis. Two minutes is the recommended time length for brushing. It’s a good idea to get a new toothbrush every two to three months.
Eat Right: Certain firm or crisp foods can be used to massage the gums and clean out leftover pieces of food after you’re done eating. Apples, carrots, celery, and popcorn are all great final food items. Bleeding gums can be a sign that you’re not getting enough vitamin C.
Floss: Brushing is a start to eliminating the plaque, but there are many areas that a toothbrush can’t reach, like the space between teeth and the gum line. Flossing helps remove plaque and maintain healthy gum tissue.
Visit the Dentist: Every six months, the dentist works to remove overall plaque buildup from your mouth to keep oral hygiene in check. A dentist can examine your mouth for gum degeneration and work to prevent an advanced infection from taking over your gums.
For more information on proper gum care or how a dentist can help you, contact Belmont Dental Group. We offer a number of dental services designed to give your family a quality smile. Call (617) 484-2431 to schedule an appointment with one of our experienced dentists.
Last updated 1 year ago
Many people say that a person’s smile is the first thing they notice about another individual, especially when it comes to the opposite sex. Unfortunately, not all of us are comfortable with the condition or color of our teeth. If you’re tired of wasting your money on store-bought bleaching trays and whitening products, then consider these three reasons to have your teeth professionally whitened by your Belmont dentist:
One of the main reasons so many individuals turn to professional whitening treatments is to remove unsightly stains and discolorations. Some of the main causes of tooth discoloration include:
- Food and drink consumption, including coffee, tea, dark sodas, wine, apples, potatoes, and other vegetables
- Chewing or smoking tobacco products
- Inadequate brushing and flossing
- Certain medications, such as tetracycline, doxycycline, antihistamines, and high blood pressure medications
- Increasing age
Wear of the Outer Layer
Another reason why people turn to dental whitening treatments is to combat tooth discoloration caused by wear to the outer layer of the teeth. The hard surface of your teeth is known as enamel and can be worn down due to disease, radiation treatments, chemotherapy treatments, pregnancy, and trauma. When this occurs, the naturally yellow-colored dentin, or material beneath the enamel, begins to show through.
While fluoride is a great way to prevent and control tooth decay when used in moderation, excessive fluoride consumption in toothpastes, mouthwashes, and water sources can lead to tooth discoloration. This process is known as dental fluorosis and is common for children during tooth development. When an individual suffers from fluorosis, their teeth begin to form white spots or pits that look like scattered white flecks or chalky lines.
Whether you’re suffering from worn down enamel or your lifestyle habits are causing tooth discoloration, the Belmont Dental Group is here to help. Let our Belmont dentists help you determine which whitening treatment best suits your needs by calling today.