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Quick Family Guide to Oral Health

As a parent, you want to ensure that your family has clean and healthy teeth and gums. You practice good oral hygiene by brushing your teeth and flossing, but is there more you can do? Below are a few tips to help you to focus on clean teeth and gums with proper oral health care habits.

Proper Teeth Brushing

Even though you have been brushing your teeth for many years, you might not be doing it the right way. At least two minutes must be dedicated to brushing the teeth, two times a day. It is best to brush in the morning as soon as you wake up and at night before bed. Be sure to floss as well to remove any stuck food particles or bacteria.

Limiting Sweets

Sweets affect the teeth in a negative manner, so one should always limit the number of sweets eaten each day. Snacks should be healthy and sugary options limited to ensure the teeth are not affected by too much sugar. If you do have a sugary treat, be sure to brush and wash out your mouth to avoid any stuck-on sugar.

Juice and soft drinks can also be an issue when it comes to sugar and starches in the mouth. Sugar and starch help to create plague which can be damaging to the teeth and gums. With too many sweets or sugary drinks, you are exposing your teeth to the possibility of tooth decay, which is something you want to avoid.

Regular Checkups

Along with brushing and flossing your teeth, plus avoiding too much starch and sugar is ensuring that you see a dentist regularly. Every member of your family needs to go to the dentist for cleanings as well as any time an issue arises. This way, the teeth are cleaned properly and treated if any oral health concerns are present.

Contact us today for all your oral health needs. We can easily set up an appointment for service to get you on the right track for healthy teeth and gums.

Teaching Teens About Dental Health

When you become a parent, your focus is always on the health of your child. From the time your baby develops teeth, you begin to teach them about oral health and quality cleaning habits. Over time, your child begins to brush and floss their teeth on their own. You rely on your child to do their very best, but they can easily begin to slack, especially during their teenage years. Even once your kids are teens, it is important to continue to speak to them about oral care, providing tips here and there to ensure a bright, white smile.

Important Points

Your teen needs to be brushing their teeth twice a day along with flossing. A fluoride toothpaste needs to be used to remove plaque build-up on the teeth. Teach your teen that as plaque builds up on the teeth, it can create gum disease and tooth decay. Flossing is also important as it removes plaque from the gumline as well as from in-between teeth.

Teens need to limit their intake of sugary and starchy foods, particularly snacks that are sticky. The sugar can stick to the teeth and cause a build-up which can lead to tooth decay. Provide healthy snacks to your teens and teach them how their food choices affect their teeth as well as overall health.

It is also important to schedule regular dental visits, so your teen can have their teeth cleaned every six months. Find a dentist that your teen can relate to, helping them to look forward to appointments rather than dreading them.

Special Dental Needs

It is during the teenage years that special dental needs may arise. During the pre-teen and teenage years, the teeth can begin to crowd or shift. Orthodontics may come in to play and this is something you should speak to your teen about. Talk about how braces can be used to fix crooked or crowded teeth, so in the future, their smile will be straight.

If your teen ends up with crowded teeth or a crooked issue, an evaluation by an orthodontist will help to determine if braces can help and if so, what type should be used.

Oral piercing should also be avoided. If your child has started asking for an oral piercing, teach them more about how such a piercing can cause complications, including an infection in the mouth or nerve damage. Any metal jewelry in the mouth can crack or chip teeth, even damaging the gums. By talking to a dentist about an oral piercing, teens can see how the piercing will affect mouth health.

Whiter Teeth

As a teen, many kids want to have a whiter smile. There are whitening tools that can be used such as toothpaste or professional methods that will brighten your teen’s smile. Have your child ask questions about teeth whitening and what can be done to help brighten teeth. Eating or drinking habits may need to change as well as a whitening toothpaste or treatment provided by the dentist.

Contact us today to learn more about teen oral health and schedule an appointment for cleaning and evaluation.

Oral Health: How Lifestyle Choices Can Affect Teeth and Gums

To keep your teeth and gums healthy, you brush and floss daily as well as see your dentist for cleanings. But did you know that there are lifestyle decisions that you can make that also affect your oral health? From poor sleep to smoking, there are ways that you are affected your mouth health that you may not be aware of. Learning more will help you to make the right decisions when it comes to your teeth and gums.

Healthy Diet is Important

A healthy diet is important for overall health, but did you know that your teeth are affected too? It is important to eat plenty of vegetables and fruit as well as starchy foods like pasta, potatoes, bread, etc, in wholegrain versions. Protein should also be included with fish, beans, meat, and eggs, along with some dairy. One should avoid fat and sugar if possible so that teeth and gums remain healthy. The vitamins and minerals provided in such foods assist with oral health.

Avoiding Tooth Decay with Reduced Sugar Intake

Limiting the amount of sugar you drink as well as eat is essential in preventing tooth decay. Drinks and foods we eat are high in sugar and can negatively affect the teeth and gums. The sugar sticks to the teeth and gums and creates bacteria. This bacteria then sits on the teeth is not properly cleaned and turns in to tooth decay.

Such items to eat in moderation include:

  • Sweets like candy and cakes
  • Sugary drinks such as soft drinks, alcohol, fizzy drinks, etc.
  • Fruit juice
  • Sugary breakfast cereal
  • Ice cream
  • Syrups
  • Smoking

Any smoker already knows that the choice to smoke is bad for one’s overall health. It also affects the teeth and gums. When you smoke, the teeth will become yellow and the risk of gum disease is increased. Smokers tend to face oral cancer in the future or have issues with their teeth due to gum disease. The best way to avoid any problem is to stop smoking altogether.

Playing Sports

If you play sports or have children that do, it is important to protect the teeth. Enjoying sports is part of many lifestyles and something that can be harmful to the teeth. When playing sports such as football or hockey, a mouthguard is recommended. With a mouthguard, the teeth are protected from impact if tackled or knocked during gameplay.

Wearing a guard ensures the teeth are protected and not chipped or broken during impact. Discuss with your dentist what type of guard will work based on the sport you or your child plays.

Overall, it is important to make good decisions when it comes to oral health. Eat a balanced diet and avoid sugary drinks and foods. Take care of your teeth by not smoking and wearing protective gear when playing impact sports.

Contact us today to learn more about how you can make smart lifestyle decisions to have healthy teeth and gums.

Do I Need a Root Canal?

If you are having difficulty with a tooth, you may be wondering if you are in need of a root canal. This dental procedure is performed when the pulp of the tooth or the nerve becomes infected and swollen. This happens due to tooth decay or when a tooth is injured or cracked. Understanding more about the procedure and consulting with your dentist will help determine if a root canal is the right path for your tooth issues.

Symptoms of a Root Canal

There are symptoms associated with a root canal that you can be on the lookout for. If your experiencing tooth pain, the issue could involve the root of the tooth. Pain can range from mild to severe. The pain may lower in intensity during the day and get worse when you bite with the tooth. Sensitivity to hot or cold drinks or foods may also occur. The gums around the tooth may begin to swell or feel tender to the touch.

Contacting Your Dentist

If you are experiencing any of the symptoms associated, it is important to contact your dentist. Discovering the problem early on will ensure that the proper procedure or treatment will be provided so that the issue can be handled as quickly as possible with no further damage to other teeth. The severity of your symptoms will determine if you need to be seen right away or if an appointment will be made within the next few days.

During the appointment, the tooth will be examined, and x-rays are taken to be able to determine the underlying cause. Once the examination is complete, the dentist will be able to tell you if your issue requires a root canal or other procedure.

With a root canal, an endodontist will need to be seen. This type of dentist is an individual who treats the nerves of the teeth.

The Process

When a root canal is needed, an appointment will be scheduled for the procedure. The procedure involves local anesthesia applied to the tooth for numbing. Small tools are then used by the dentist to access the inside of the tooth. Damage and diseased pulp are removed from inside the tooth and irrigation used to wash away any pulp that remains.
After the area inside the tooth has been cleaned the hole created is then filled with a temporary filing. A permanent crown will be added in the coming weeks. Once the permanent crown is in place, the tooth is restored. Depending on the nature of the existing tooth, a supporting post might need to be added to help create more stability for the new crown.

If you are experiencing any pain or unusual feeling in your teeth, it is important to visit the dentist as soon as you can. This way, the issue can be discovered, and the proper treatment provided before any other issues are created.

Contact our office today to schedule an appointment if you are experiencing any tooth pain that might require a root canal or other treatment.

Cleaning Your Teeth Before the Dentist

For quality oral health, the teeth need to be brushed twice a day along with flossing. On top of your regular dental routine, visits to your dentist need to be completed at least every six months in order to have your teeth cleaned. When scheduling your visit, it is important to focus on how clean your teeth are before you arrive. You want to have clean teeth, so your checkup will be complete with no issues and you are impressing your dentist with a clean mouth!

Brushing Properly

Brushing your teeth should be done every day, but even if you are brushing them, are you doing it properly? Brushing the right way ensure the teeth have the best results and your teeth are clean during your next checkup. Extra time needs to be devoted to brushing your teeth each and every time, particularly before you visit the dentist.

Start by using a soft bristled brush and adding your toothpaste. Use the brush at a 45-degree angle, starting at the gumline. Brush back and forth gently on the gums before moving to the teeth. Start on the outside of the teeth and backsides, then moving on to the front. Be sure to cover all areas of the mouth, including the molars for an overall clean.

Flossing and Mouthwash

After brushing, the teeth need to be flossed. Any food particles or plaque that is stuck to the teeth needs to be removed. Start at the back bottom two teeth and use floss to clean out any areas that might have been missed by the toothbrush. After flossing, be sure to finish your cleaning with mouthwash. This will help to rinse out any particles as well as disinfect the mouth.

For all your teeth cleaning needs, contact us today for more information. We are happy to assist by scheduling an appointment for service.

Are Dentures Made from Durable Material?

When teeth are missing in adults, the common option to restore the smile is dentures. When several teeth are missing, it can lead to issues with eating and speaking. Adults can begin to feel self-conscious and avoid talking to others or even going out socially. Eating can also become difficult, causing the individual to miss out on favorite foods due to missing teeth. With dentures, there is a solution. But what are dentures made of? Are they durable and able to provide a solution for missing teeth long-term?

Understanding Denture Creation

When dentures are made, the teeth are created from types of porcelain or resin. Porcelain is the most desired material as it is more durable as well as a stronger option for creating quality dentures. Porcelain has several advantages which makes it a top choice for denture creation. The glass-like ceramic material has an appearance similar to the enamel of the teeth. The material can easily be color matched to your existing teeth, which helps create a more natural appearance.

The feel of porcelain is also similar to the natural teeth. When inserting the dentures for the first time and becoming used to the new teeth, the feel of porcelain helps the teeth to feel normal. When porcelain is created, heat is used, which helps to make the material stronger, which means longer lasting artificial teeth.

On the downside, porcelain is breakable. If the dentures were to be dropped on the floor, it could cause a problem. In most cases, porcelain is used more often with full dentures rather than a partial, where only a few teeth are replaced.

Acrylic resin is becoming a more popular material to be used for dentures, based on durability and adhering capability. Acrylic is better able to adhere to the base of the dentures and it is easier to get a better fit with this material. Is it important to review the aspects of both with your dentist to determine which option works best for you.

Fitting Process

For the dentures to stay inside your mouth comfortably, a framework must be created for support. this will be done whether you are in need of a partial or a full set of dentures. To ensure the framework will fit, the dentist will take an impression of your gums. The impression will then be used to make a mold for your dentures. This way, the mold will be an exact replica of your mouth and the dentures will fit correctly.

Once you have your new dentures, it is important to learn proper care. Learn how long they should last and what you need to do to ensure longevity. Oral hygiene habits will be one factor to consider to make sure the dentures last as long as possible. Using quality products and cleaning your mouth as well as the dentures will ensure they last for a long period of time.

Contact our office today to learn more about denture options and how we can help you restore your smile!

Top Features to Look for from a Pediatric Dentist

As a couple, when you begin to prepare for a child, you set up the home to be a safe environment and begin to look for a medical doctor and daycare for your child. There are so many steps that go into preparing your life for a little one. As your child ages, you will need to find more care providers for their well-being, including a pediatric dentist. A general dentist can provide proper oral health care for your child but finding a pediatric dentist will ensure that your child will be well-cared for by a specialist that was trained in children’s dentistry, providing the essential services needed to ensure quality oral health for your little one.

When searching for a pediatric dentist, there are certain characteristics you should be looking for. Below are a few ideas to add to your list of requirements, so that you find the perfect dentist for your growing family.

Inviting

Children can be wary of visiting the dentist, even as they get older. You want to find a dentist office that is outgoing and friendly. Make an appointment to meet the dentist and see how your child responds before any checkup is scheduled. You want to find a dentist that your child is comfortable with, someone who has a great demeanor and helps your child feel at ease during visits.

Promoting Good Oral Health

All pediatric dentists should be ready to remain positive about oral health and teach your child good habits, such as regular brushing and flossing. Speak to the dentist about how they interact with children and what they recommend when it comes to promoting quality oral health habits.

Patience

A good pediatric dentist will also be patient. It can be difficult to work with children on a regular basis, so a pediatric dentist must be able to have patience and deal with children who are shy, active or impatient. You want to choose a dentist who can handle anxiety if your child is scared to visit or deal with other personality traits with ease, not becoming impatient or irritable themselves during the visit.

Fun and Caring Environment

It is also important to ensure your child’s dentist offers a fun and caring environment. A pediatric dentist office that is bright and colorful and offers a stimulating experience when walking into the door is one where your child will be comfortable and excited to visit. Find a dentist office that offers special perks for kids, such as cartoons in the waiting room or specially decorated patient rooms, so your child is excited to attend upcoming appointments.

Availability

Parents should also get to know the availability of the dentist when searching for pediatric care. Ask the office if the dentist is available for calls with questions if issues arise with your child. You want to be able to reach the dentist or nurses when needed to find out what to do if a dental issue takes place.

When it comes to pediatric dental care, our Chippewa Falls office can provide you with the right services for your child. Our dentists are caring and attentive, helping your child to feel more at ease when visiting our office.

Preventative Dentistry: For the Young and Old

The term preventative dentistry is used to describe overall oral health care when it comes to practicing good habits. With preventative dentistry, children, as well as adults, learn how to properly take care of the teeth and gums to ensure the no issues arise in the future. Daily brushing and flossing, plus annual dental cleanings will result in avoiding gum disease, enamel wear, and cavities over time.

Preventative Treatment at the Office

Children and adults can benefit from preventative dentistry, including the common practices completed at a dentist’s office. There are several procedures that will take place at a dentist’s office that can prevent future issues with the teeth and gums. For starters, a regular exam is a form of prevention as it helps to detect any issues within the mouth. The dentist will be able to see any potential decay of the teeth or gum problems. Once the review is completed, the dentist can then recommend any treatments like a cleaning or filling of a cavity.

Certain issues, particularly with adults, may require multiple visits to the dentist. Gum disease is often found in adults who have neglected to visit the dentist on a regular basis. Several treatments may be needed to try and fight any infection or issues involving gum disease.

Children’s Preventative Care

Parents teach their children a variety of lessons in order to prepare them for adulthood. One area that needs particular attention is the teeth and gums. Teaching your children how to properly brush and floss their teeth sets them up for oral health success in the future. Children should be brushing and flossing twice a day as well as visiting the dentist for regular cleanings.

A fluoride varnish can be applied during the early years by your dentist to help protect the teeth, making them less susceptible to decay. Sealants can also be used to protect the teeth and may be recommended by your dentist.

To assist in preventative measures for adults as well as children, contact our Chippewa Falls dentist office today. We can easily assist in caring for your teeth and gums.

Porcelain Crowns: Are They Right for You?

When it comes to our teeth, we all want a beautiful smile. With a lovely smile, one feels confident and ready to take on the world. Over time, the teeth begin to wear with age and require dental repairs to ensure that you are comfortable smiling and eating. One way in which the teeth can be repaired is with a crown. There are several crown types used by dentists today, with porcelain being a top choice of patients. Learn more about crowns below, including porcelain to see if this option will be of benefit to your smile.

What are Crowns?

A dental crown is a device that will cover a tooth that is discolored or badly formed. A crown can help a tooth that is weak to prevent breakage or repair the tooth. A crown also is used to cover a dental implant. When choosing a crown for dental needs, the material used can consist of ceramic, porcelain, gold alloy or base metal alloy.

For the most part, porcelain is the material used for crowns. However, the material used will depend on what will suit you best. If you are visiting the dentist for a cosmetic issue, then porcelain is the best option. a porcelain based ceramic crown is the top choice for crowns used to restore the front teeth. This is because the material can easily match the color of your existing teeth. Once the dental work is complete your teeth will have a natural appearance.

Additional Perks

Aside from matching the color of your teeth, porcelain also has additional advantages when used for crowns. The material is resistant to wear and tear, so it works well to uphold integrity when eating and drinking. Porcelain also offers a nice sealant and guards against cavities and leakage. With porcelain crowns, the patient will be able to eat as they normally would and enjoy a beautiful smile, feeling confident once again.

One side effect that can be present with porcelain is that the patient can develop an allergy to the metal that is used to fuse the porcelain to the mouth. It is important that a qualified dentist applies the crown to your teeth and takes care to watch for any signs of allergy. This way, alternative options can be used to restore your smile, if an allergy issue is present.

When porcelain crowns are placed inside the mouth, a portion of the tooth may need to be removed so the crown can be put in place. The porcelain is fused to metal that is secured to a structure also made of metal to ensure the strength of the crown.

When it comes to your crown needs, our Chippewa Falls dental group is ready to assist. We focus on providing you with the crown material type that will best suit your dental needs. Let our team help you with a new crown by scheduling an appointment for a consultation. We are ready to assist you with all your dental health needs.

Learn More About Dental Veneers

Patients who have teeth that have gaps, are chipped or stained, often rely on the dentist to provide an option for cosmetic dentistry, to improve the smile. One option that can be used is dental veneers. With dental veneers, a thin section of porcelain is configured to create the look of natural teeth. The porcelain is fixed to the existing teeth to create a strong and resilient tooth that contours to your teeth, matching the original enamel and providing a natural appearance.

Veneers are considered to be an option that is less intrusive than restructuring the teeth by using braces or crowns. Veneers can be used in several ways to change the look of your teeth including correcting a small misalignment or to close a gap between teeth. Many patients choose to have veneers placed on the teeth to create a straighter and brighter smile, correcting fractures within the teeth or discoloration.

How Are Veneers Placed on the Teeth?

Now that you know a little bit more about how veneers are used, it is important to learn how they are placed onto the teeth. The typical process of applying veneers will take one or two appointments with your dentist. A veneer that is prefabricated will need to be placed within one appointment. If a lab is creating the veneers for you, then it can take two visits for the application.

When the veneers are placed on the teeth, anesthesia is usually not used, unless the patient is sensitive to dental treatments. The tooth where the veneer will be placed will need to be cleaned and the dentist can then find the right color for the veneer. A small amount of enamel will be removed from the tooth to provide an area for placement of the veneer.

A temporary veneer will be put in place until the new one is ready in the lab. Once the porcelain veneer is created by the lab and ready, the dentist will then remove the temporary veneer and clean your tooth, preparing it for the veneer. An adhesive is used to prep the tooth and then cement added before the veneer is put in place. The dentist will then make sure the veneer is attached and contoured to fit.

Once in place, the tooth or teeth will be polished and ready for use. A follow-up will be scheduled to make sure the veneer is comfortable and working well.

Caring for Your Veneers

Once applied, you will need to take proper care of your veneers. You are to brush and floss your teeth as you normally would, using a non-abrasive toothpaste that has fluoride. It is recommended that you avoid drinking too much coffee or other drinks and foods that can stain your teeth, as veneers are susceptible to staining just as your natural teeth are.

At our Chippewa Falls office, we are ready to offer you quality veneer options for your cosmetic dentistry needs. Give our office a call today to schedule a consultation and learn more about your veneer choices.