are soft drinks bad for your teeth?
Sugar and acids are your teeth’s worst enemies. What are
we talking about? Soft drinks, energy drinks, fruit
juices, and candy. Because of the acid content, Mountain
Dew seems to be the worst of the worst. Dentists even
have a name for the damage it does – they call it “Dew
Mouth.” These soften the tooth enamel, making it highly
susceptible to decay. Parents, watch your kid’s
consumption of these, because young children’s enamel
hasn’t developed fully. This makes these drinks even
more damaging for kids. As well as eliminating the above
(or at least reducing their consumption), use a
sugar-free xylitol chewing gum after meals. Also, rinse
your mouth with a high-quality dental mouthwash.
likes to chew ice. Is this harmful?
Tooth enamel is very hard, but that doesn’t mean you
can’t break it. Try to avoid eating “hard foods” such as
popcorn. Don’t crack nut shells with your teeth or chew
on ice. Opening packages with your teeth can also damage
seem to be a very bad idea. How bad?
Yes, they can look cool, but they can also fracture your
teeth as well as make it much easier to get a nasty
infection of the tongue and lips. Dentists have
estimated that up to 40% of people who have metal rings
or other oral piercings have had big problems from tooth
fractures and infection.
Is fluoride bad for
Fluoride is fine…in small amounts. Excessive fluoride
can cause tooth enamel irregularities. Young children,
especially, often swallow too much toothpaste while
brushing. So parents, supervise your young kids while
they brush. Kids (and even adults) often use way too
much toothpaste (a pea-size drop is plenty). A little
goes a long way.
think I grind my teeth at night. What can I do about
Do you wake up with discomfort in your jaws or a
persistent headache? If so, you may be grinding (called
bruxing) while you sleep. Persistent bruxing can damage
teeth and cause them to get shorter and shorter. It can
also damage your temporomandibular (jaw) joints and even
affect your hearing. If you suspect that you are a
bruxer, call us today. Dr. Kassan may recommend a night
guard or other oral appliance.
Does the doctor
check for oral cancer?
Yes, we do. Dentists and hygienists are your first line
of defense in detecting and treating oral cancer. Each
year in the US, approximately 30,000 people are newly
diagnosed with oral cancer. Worldwide, the problem is
far greater, with new cases annually approaching
300,000. In the US alone, a person dies from oral cancer
every hour of every day. If you add the sub category of
laryngeal cancers, the rates of occurrence (about 10,000
additional new cases per year) and death are
significantly higher. However, the good news is, when
found early, oral cancers have an 80 to 90% cure rate.
Why is it important
to have regular teeth cleaning?
Did you know “teeth cleaning” does more than just clean
your teeth? Removing plaque is absolutely essential if
you want to preserve your teeth. It builds up on the
tooth surfaces and between the teeth. Brushing and
flossing are, of course, vital, but everyone needs their
teeth professionally cleaned on a regular basis.
Remember – only a dental hygienist can completely clean
is a TMJ disorder?
TMJ stands for temporomandibular joint, your jaw joints.
The ache, discomfort, or tenderness in or around the jaw
joints is called a TMJ disorder.
Signs that you might have a TMJ disorder are:
• Facial irritation or tenderness
• Jaw ache
• Ache in or around the ears
• Neck strain
• Jaw stiffness
• Discomfort while chewing
• Difficulty opening and closing the mouth
• Jaw “locking up”
• Jaw makes a clicking sound
• Teeth that don't come together properly when eating or chewing
There are a variety of treatment options for TMJ. Be
sure to ask us about these.
This is just a sampling of
often-asked questions. Have one of your own? Don’t
hesitate to give us a call at (703) 897-0463 so we can