May, 2014

5 Dental Myths Debunked

Thursday, May 22nd, 2014

Healthy teeth make for a healthy body. As more and more research proves that dental health can have a strong impact on your overall health, it’s important to know that some commonly held beliefs regarding dental health may actually be hurting you. Learn what’s right and wrong for your teeth by exploring some common dental myths, debunked.

  1. Teeth whitening will destroy tooth enamel. In-home teeth whitening kits generally contain less than 3% of active ingredients, so moderate use of such products will typically not harm teeth. However, in-office procedures are the safest form of teeth whitening and will produce the best results.
  2. Only mouthwash containing alcohol is effective. Mouthwash containing alcohol has been linked to oral cancer since the 1970s. Alcohol dehydrates the mouth and teeth, which can lead to additional oral health issues.
  3. Everyone has to have their wisdom teeth removed. Wisdom teeth are like the tonsils or appendix because through evolution, they have become non-essential to human health. However, just as not every child  has his or her tonsils removed, not every child has to have his or her wisdom teeth removed. Unless wisdom teeth are causing pain, they can remain in the mouth.
  4. Silver cavity fillings are safe. This is actually contrary to research findings. Silver fillings contain more than 50% mercury. Mercury that leaks out of silver fillings over time has been linked to auto-immune diseases, mental disorders, and neurological disorders. If you have silver fillings, it is recommended seeing your dentist to have them replaced with tooth-colored fillings.
  5. Eating sugar is the main cause of cavities. Sugar has a bad reputation in regards to health, but it is not the main cause of cavities.  Acid is the major culprit when it comes to tooth decay and the formulation of cavities. Acid and saliva mix together to produce the plaque-causing agents that cause cavities.

Dental Care in Toccoa

If you’re ready to learn more about your dental health, contact us today and schedule a consultation.  Our offices are located in Toccoa, GA, and we can be reached at 706-886-9439.  We look forward to serving you.

Is Invisalign® for You?

Thursday, May 15th, 2014

Most people associate dental braces as being worn by young children and teenagers. However,  braces are now more popular than ever among adults who want to correct the look of their teeth, and improve their smile! Orthodontic treatments offer something for everyone.

Adults seek orthodontic treatment for various reasons, from crooked teeth to unwanted spaces in between teeth. Aside from cosmetic issues, crooked or uneven teeth can also make everyday activities, like eating or talking comfortably, quite difficult for many adults.

Dental braces have come a long way over the years. In the past, uncomfortable metal braces were the only option for patients who needed to correct crooked or imperfect teeth. However, Invisalign® braces have become increasingly popular over the years- especially among adults, who do not want to wear embarrassing, or uncomfortable, metal braces.

Invisalign are invisible dental aligners, which can discreetly correct your crooked teeth, and give you a more beautiful smile! Unlike traditional dental braces, Invisalign braces are removable. This means you have the flexibility to drink and eat what you like, while still treating dental issues by simply removing the aligners! Just by brushing and flossing regularly, you can maintain good oral hygiene.

Invisalign is also preferred by many patients since it will not cause any irritation to your mouth. Perhaps best of all, you will spend much less time in a dental chair, although your dentist will monitor your progress closely as you wear Invisalign.

So, is Invisalign for you? Most patients are considered good candidates for Invisalign, since it offers all the same benefits of traditional dental braces without the added irritation or discomfort! Both younger and older patients alike can benefit from the treatment, especially if they wish to correct the appearance of crooked, overcrowded, or spaced teeth. However, your dentist will make the final determination of whether or not Invisalign is right for you.

Dental Care in Toccoa

If you’re ready to learn more about Invisalign®, contact us today and schedule a consultation.  Our offices are located in Toccoa, GA, and we can be reached at 706-886-9439.  We look forward to serving you.


Caring for Your Teeth During Pregnancy

Saturday, May 10th, 2014

With all the changes that happen to a woman’s body during pregnancy, dental health can easily be forgotten. However, pregnant women should never neglect caring for their teeth and gums.  Though many do not realize it, women face a host of a serious dental issues during pregnancy.

Let’s take a look at some of the most concerning dental issues among pregnant women today:

  • Pregnancy tumors. Pregnancy tumors are red, lumpy growths that appear along the gum line and between teeth. These lumps tend to bleed easily, and can cause a great deal of discomfort. Despite the word “tumor” being part of the name, these growths are not cancerous. They can be removed if they prove to be extremely painful, but they will usually disappear on their own once the baby is born.
  • Gingivitis. Pregnant women usually find themselves at an increased risk for developing the gum disease gingivitis. Common symptoms of gingivitis include swelling, and tenderness of the gums. Usually, the gums will also bleed when the patient brushes his or her teeth. If left untreated, gingivitis can cause long-term damage to the tissues holding the teeth in place. Scheduling regular, professional dental cleanings can prevent this condition from becoming worse.
  • Tooth decay. During pregnancy, women usually experience food cravings which cause them to snack frequently, and often, not wisely. Tooth decay is usually linked to poor diet, specially when one snacks on foods that are high in either starches or complex sugars. Eating a great deal of sugary foods can significantly weaken your tooth enamel, which may eventually result in tooth decay.

During pregnancy, it is important to schedule regular oral examinations with your dentist. If any dental issues are found, treatments can be delayed, so that complications to the unborn child will be prevented. Normally, though, women will be able to maintain their dental healthy simply by brushing and flossing regularly. If you are pregnant, speak with your dentist, who can help you establish and maintain an effective dental care plan!

Dental Care in Toccoa

If you’re ready to learn more about caring for your teeth during pregnancy, contact us today and schedule a consultation.  Our offices are located in Toccoa, GA, and we can be reached at 706-886-9439.  We look forward to serving you.

How abrasive is your toothpaste?

Wednesday, May 7th, 2014

Not all toothpastes are created equal. Some can even cause problems. Many types of toothpaste are highly abrasive and actually strip away tooth enamel which never grows back. The teeth may become sensitive when tooth enamel is worn away. Toothpaste’s abrasiveness is measure by its Relative Dentin Abrasivity (RDA).

The table below shows the RDA of some common toothpastes. We suggest that you use toothpastes with lower RDA ratings. In addition to finding toothpaste that is minimally abrasive, we suggest finding one with fluouride.  Fluoride helps strengthen enamel and prevent cavities. Toothpaste contains abrasives which help clean teeth. Unfortunately, these abrasives can sometimes strip away tooth enamel, making teeth sensitive to heat, cold, and sweets.

A secondary problem from the abrasiveness of the paste is notching of the tooth at the gum line causing a structural compromise. Often a filling is necessary to protect the future integrity of the tooth. Again, selecting a paste with a low RDA can prevent both sensitivity and structural compromises that can cause the need for future restorative dentistry.


RDA Dentifrice brand and variety Source
07 straight baking soda Church & Dwight
08 Arm & Hammer Tooth Powder Church & Dwight
30 Elmex Sensitive Plus Elmex
35 Arm & Hammer Dental Care Church & Dwight
42 Arm & Hammer Advance White Baking Soda Peroxide Church & Dwight
44 Squigle Enamel Saver Squigle
48 Arm & Hammer Dental Care Sensitive Church & Dwight
49 Arm & Hammer Peroxicare Tartar Control Church & Dwight
49 Tom’s of Maine Sensitive (given as 40′s) Tom’s
52 Arm & Hammer Peroxicare Regular Church & Dwight
53 Rembrandt Original (RDA) Rembrandt
54 Arm & Hammer Dental Care PM Bold Mint Church & Dwight
57 Tom’s of Maine Children’s, Wintermint (given as mid-50′s) Tom’s
62 Supersmile Supersmile
63 Rembrandt Mint (‘Heffernan RDA’) Rembrandt
68 Colgate Regular Colgate-Palmolive
70 Colgate Total Colgate-Palmolive
70 Arm & Hammer Advance White Sensitive Church & Dwight
70 Colgate 2-in-1 Fresh Mint (given as 50-70) Colgate-Palmolive
79 Sensodyne Colgate-Palmolive
80 AIM Unilever
80 Close-Up Unilever
83 Colgate Sensitive Maximum Strength Colgate-Palmolive
91 Aquafresh Sensitive Colgate-Palmolive
93 Tom’s of Maine Regular (given as high 80′s low 90′s) Squigle (Tom’s)
94 Rembrandt Plus Rembrandt
94 Plus White Indiana study
95 Crest Regular (possibly 99) P&G (P&G)
101 Natural White Indiana study
103 Mentadent Squigle
103 Arm & Hammer Sensation Church & Dwight
104 Sensodyne Extra Whitening Colgate-Palmolive
106 Colgate Platinum Indiana study
106 Arm & Hammer Advance White Paste Church & Dwight
107 Crest Sensitivity Protection Colgate-Palmolive
110 Colgate Herbal Colgate-Palmolive
110 Amway Glister (given as upper bound) Patent US06174515
113 Aquafresh Whitening Indiana study
117 Arm & Hammer Advance White Gel Church & Dwight
117 Arm & Hammer Sensation Tartar Control Church & Dwight
120 Close-Up with Baking Soda (canadian) Unilever
124 Colgate Whitening Indiana study
130 Crest Extra Whitening Indiana study
133 Ultra brite (or 120-140) Indiana study (or Colgate-Palmolive)
144 Crest MultiCare Whitening P&G
145 Ultra brite Advanced Whitening Formula P&G
145 Colgate Baking Sode & Peroxide Whitening (given as 135-145) Colgate-Palmolive
150 Pepsodent (given as upper bound) Unilever
165 Colgate Tartar Control (given as 155-165) Colgate-Palmolive
168 Arm & Hammer Dental Care PM Fresh Mint Church & Dwight
200 Colgate 2-in-1 Tartar Control/Whitening or Icy Blast/Whitening (given as 190-200) Colgate-Palmolive
200 recommended limit FDA
250 recommended limit ADA
* Anything below 70-80 RDA is considered low abrasive
(Information provided by John C. Kois, D.M.D., M.S.D)

One in seven children have their first dental visit owing to an emergency

Friday, May 2nd, 2014

April 28, 2014 |

CHAPEL HILL, N.C., USA: Early preventive dental visits are essential for a child’s oral health. However, there are few studies about how children enter the dental care system. Now, researchers have found that especially the attitude of caregivers toward oral health has a significant influence on children’s dental care-seeking patterns.


The study was based on the data of about 1,000 caregiver–child dyads who were originally enrolled in the Carolina Oral Health Literacy study during 2007/2008. The children had no dental visits before enrollment.

Assessing oral health status, health literacy, dental neglect, and access to care barriers in the study population, the researchers found that almost 40 percent of the children had not visited the dentist during the two-year period taken into consideration. On average, these children were 16 months old on entering the dental care system.

Overall, children with reported oral health problems at baseline were more likely to enter the dental care system compared with children with better oral health. However, they were also more likely to require emergency care. According to the study, 13 percent of the children had their first dental visit owing to an emergency.

The researchers also found that the children of caregivers who neglected their own oral health were more likely not to enter the dental care system.

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry states that tooth decay is the single most common chronic childhood disease. It is five times more common than asthma. An estimated 5 percent of children under the age of 6, roughly 300,000 U.S. children, experience significant levels of early childhood caries. An additional 15 percent, roughly 1.5 million, experience lesser levels of the disease, which has also been associated with insufficient physical development, loss of school days and diminished ability to learn.

The current study, titled “Influence of Caregivers and Children’s Entry Into the Dental Care System,” was published online on April 21 in the Pediatrics journal ahead of print.


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