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Are you planning a romantic evening with your loved one for Valentine’s Day?  When you know that you are going to be up close to someone you care about, fresh breath is important. Below you will find the best tips to maintain fresh breath for your valentine, and every day of the year.

Top Breath Freshening Tips

-Keep Hydrated. Water has a dual purpose in maintaining dental health. It can wash away bacteria and food particles that can lead to bad breath and also keep  tissues hydrated which reduces the buildup of malodorous sulfur compounds on the back of the tongue. Another good beverage for fresh breath is green tea. Green tea has an increased ability to lower the levels of oral bacteria’s sulfur compounds. These sulfur compounds are the cause of many oral malodors which can linger for hours.

-Chew Sugarless Gum (even better with Xylitol). Chewing gum with xylitol can stimulate salivary production and clean our teeth. Xylitol is a natural sweetener derived from the fibrous parts of plants. It does not break down like sugar and can help keep a neutral pH level in the mouth. Xylitol also prevents bacteria from sticking to the teeth.  The number of acid-producing bacteria may fall as much as 90% when chewing gum with xylitol. A decrease in plaque will result in a decrease in odor.

-Maintain A Balanced Diet Filled With The Right Foods. Enjoying crunchy, high-fiber foods like apples and raw vegetables can increase your mouth’s production of saliva, which will diminish odor-causing bacteria. Cinnamon has been shown to kill odor causing bacteria. Vitamin C-rich foods stop odor-causing bacteria from spreading and neutralize odors from stinky foods like garlic and onions. Greek yogurt lowers a waste product from bacteria called hydrogen sulfide in the mouth. Chewing fresh parsley can also help your breath.

-Do Not Avoid Carbohydrates. The latest diets, like the Atkins Diet, require you to eat little to no carbohydrates. If you are eating a mostly protein diet, your body could go into a state of ketosis. Ketosis is when your body burns fats for energy and produces molecules called ketones. A type of ketone called acetone is then excreted in the breath, and can be described as smelling “fruity” or “rotten.” To avoid ketosis, eat a moderate amount of healthy carbohydrates, such as whole-grain breads, rice or pasta.

-Use An Anti Bacterial Mouthrinse Or Spray. Mouth rinses have many great qualities like reducing plaque buildup on teeth and helping to prevent periodontal disease. They also are able to keep breath fresh. Use a mouth rinse at least once a day will help keep the number of odor causing bacteria down to a minimum. There are also breath sprays, Closys is a great oral spray which directly neutralizes sulfur compounds.

Fresh Breath Conclusion

Maintaining fresh breath should be a goal year round and not just for Valentine’s day. Taking a few extra steps can help give you the confidence you need in intimate moments. If your bad breath persists please seek the help of a dentist to ensure the cause is not a more serious health condition.

Regular exercise has been long proven to improve quality of life. Bet you did not know regular exercise is good for your dental health too! Recent research suggests that regular workouts can help prevent periodontal disease.

Exercise And Dental Linked?

Numerous studies have been completed over the last 10 years confirming a definite link between regular exercise and increased dental health. These studies have been published in well respected publications like the Journal of Periodontology and the Journal of Dentistry. Let’s see what each study had to say…

Journal Of Periodontology

One study followed three health enhancing behaviors maintaining normal weight, regular exercise, and a well balanced diet) to see the effect on periodontal disease. The researchers found that patients who followed these three behaviors were 40% less likely to have progressive periodontal disease.

Another Journal of Periodontolgy study showed lower risk of periodontal disease amongst the least obese and the most physically fit subjects. The study concluded that obesity and physical fitness may have some interactive effect on periodontal health. One factor they share: inflammation, which physical activity reduces. It is important to note that inflammation is a key factor in other systemic diseases as well. These include diabetes, heart disease, and stroke.

Journal Of Dentistry

This study followed the effects of exercise and smoking on periodontal health. The study found that patients who never smoked and exercised regularly were about 54% less likely to have progressive periodontal disease than those who did not exercise. It also found that former smokers had a 74% lower risk of having periodontal disease.

Exercise And Dental Health Conclusion

Working out helps improve digestion and can help your body use vitamins and minerals that are essential to dental health more effectively. If you exercise and eat a well balanced diet, your body is better able to use the nutrients in food to strengthen and protect your smile.

Physical fitness can greatly contribute to dental health as well as your overall health. It can also improve your mood, help you manage stress and increase brainpower. If you’re not already, we encourage you to make regular exercise a habit.

Vegetarian - a person who does not eat or does not believe in eating meat, fish, chicken. Vegan- no food  derived from animals, such as eggs or cheese, but instead eatsCosmetic Dentist Marielaina Perrone DDS vegetables, fruits, nuts, grain, etc.

Many people in society today have chosen to go Vegetarian for many reasons. One of the main reasons people choose this lifestyle is to live healthier. Most well balanced vegetarians have excellent oral health, but while a vegetarian diet has great health benefits it can adversely affect your oral health if not watched carefully. The vegetarian diet eliminates certain food groups which can cause the loss of certain nutrients essential for oral health.

Some Vegetarians experience deficiencies in calcium, fiber, and Vitamin D putting them at increased risk for periodontal disease. If you choose to forgo animal based food it is imperative that you find food alternatives and supplement options that can help you maintain not only your dental health but also your overall health.

Cause For Dental Concern Among Vegetarians

Many who enter into the vegetarian lifestyle go into it full of knowledge regarding dietary options by consuming vegetables, fruits, grains, and legumes to get the vitamins and nutrients they need on a daily basis.  Studies have shown though that an adult eating a vegetarian diet for an extended period of time can be at an increased risk for a lack of vitamin D and calcium. Generally, we get lax over time and may not be as good at maintaining a well balanced diet to include everything we need.

A deficiency of vitamin D and calcium can cause teeth to weaken over time, which makes them more susceptible to tooth decay and periodontal disease. However, vitamin D is produced naturally in the body with normal sun exposure, so deficiencies are quite rare. Deficiencies in calcium are much more common but can be easily remedied with the proper diet and supplements. Studies have shown that people who consume less than the recommended daily amount of calcium are almost twice as likely to have periodontal disease.

Dairy products (milk, cheese and yogurt) are the best sources of calcium. Certain products are also fortified with calcium like soy milk, breakfast cereals, and orange juice. However, for vegans, there are several other types of non-dairy sources of calcium that you can choose to ensure your daily calcium intake. Bean products, such as tofu, as well as sesame seeds, nuts, dried fruit, and green leafy vegetables particularly okra and curly kale are excellent choices and today, certain products like soy milk , bottled water, breakfast cereals and orange juice are also fortified with extra calcium.

Vegetarina Dental Concerns Marielaina Perrone DDS

The potential for nutritional deficiencies is greatest among children and teenagers who decide to become vegetarians. This is because they generally do not know enough about their nutritional needs. Also, some vegetarians are at risk for nutritional deficiencies in vitamin B2 and vitamin B12 as well as calcium and vitamin D.

Dental Health Advantages of Vegetarian Choices

Fresh fruits and vegetable can provide increased saliva production which in turn neutralizes acids. Fresh fruits and vegetables do not contain carbohydrates that can be readily fermented by bacteria, the fiber content actually helps clean the teeth, therefore protecting against dental caries. The best choices to supplement fiber are low acid beans and legumes or whole grain products.

Supplement Options For Vegetarians

There are countless supplement options on the market today to achieve proper nutritional intake of vitamins and minerals. Some of these supplements also offer some dental benefit. These include:

-Coenzyme Q10. Studies have shown it promotes gum healing and cell growth.
-Lysine. Known to have some effectiveness in combating canker sores.
-Vitamin C with Bioflavonoids. Promotes healing, especially of gingival tissue that is inflamed and bleeding from periodontal disease.
-Calcium and Magnesium. Believed to help prevent bone loss around the teeth.
-Vitamins A and E. Are needed for healing gingival tissue.
-Grape Seed Extract. Is known as a powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory.
-Zinc plus Copper. Enhances immune function.
-Aloe Vera Gel. Relieves inflamed gums and soothes the tissues when applied directly to the inflamed area of tissue.
-Chamomile Tea. Soothing to gingival tissues.
-Green Tea. Is helpful in decay prevention and decreases plaque.
-Echinacea. Keeps inflammation down and enhances immune function.

Conclusion

Remember that anyone considering adopting a vegetarian lifestyle should seek  out information  from books, their physician, or a nutritionist to learn about substitutes to ensure maintenance of a well balanced diet. This should not just be jumped into without proper knowledge and preparation. Patients should also inform their physicians or dentist as part of their medical history if they are vegetarian.

A healthy well balanced diet and maintaining a good dental hygiene regimen are the best defense against problems with your gums and teeth. Eating a balanced variety of fruits, vegetables, grains, and legumes will help vegetarians (and anyone for that matter) achieve a healthy, well balanced diet and a healthy smile. As always see your dentist regularly for dental examinations and professional cleanings.

The new year is fast approaching and it may be time to start thinking about what your New Year’s resolutions should be. These usually include losing weight,

Happy New Year Marielaina Perrone DDS

Have A Healthy, Happy New Year!!

striving for a better job, or maybe even just being  a better friend or partner. Many people also set new goals for leading a healthier life going forward. So why not make some New Year’s resolutions regarding your dental health?

Making dental health resolutions can keep your teeth healthy, and studies have shown it can keep your entire body healthy as well.

Dental Health New Year’s Resolutions

Eat A Well Balanced Diet including Fruits and Vegetables

Eating a well balanced diet is important for your dental health. If your body is not getting its proper nutrition it can affect your entire immune system. Poor nutrition, increases susceptibility to many common oral disorders, including periodontal disease and tooth decay. Antioxidants and other nutrients found in fruits, vegetables, legumes and nuts improve your body’s ability to fight bacteria and inflammation. Healthy eating helps to protect your teeth and gum tissues. In addition, crisp fruits and raw vegetables like apples, carrots and celery can actually help clean plaque from teeth and freshen breath as well.

Quit Smoking or Using Other Tobacco Products

Using tobacco has been proven to be bad for your dental health as well as your general health. Some of the dental issues associated with smoking include:

-Tooth Discoloration.

-Tooth Decay.

-Gingival Recession.

-Periodontal Disease.

-Increased risk for cancer. This includes oral cancer as well throat, lung, and other systemic cancers.
People who smoke are almost twice as likely to lose their teeth as non smokers. It is not just smoking tobacco that has negative effects on your oral health: use of smokeless tobacco can be just as damaging to your dental health. The good news is, that the risk of tooth loss decreases after you quit smoking or using smokeless tobacco.

Use Alcohol in Moderation

You may already know that excessive alcohol intake can have an effect on your overall health, but did you know that it may also affect your dental health? According to the Academy of General Dentistry, those who use tobacco products, are more likely to maintain poor nutrition. Drinking excessive alcohol also  increases gum recession (periodontal pocketing). Studies show that smokers who regularly drink alcohol are less likely to brush and floss their teeth regularly and are less concerned about their basic health than non smokers.

Improve Dental Hygiene: Brush and Floss Regularly

Brushing and flossing protect your teeth from tooth decay and periodontal disease. These are caused by your teeth’s most persistent enemy, plaque. Both brushing and flossing are equally important for good oral health. Studies have shown that only flossing can remove plaque from between teeth and below the gum line,areas  where tooth decay and periodontal disease begins.

Without proper brushing and flossing, you may develop bleeding gums and gingivitis. Gingivitis is the earliest form of periodontal disease and is reversible. If untreated it will worsen to severely swollen, red, bleeding gums and, eventually, advanced periodontal disease. Periodontal disease has been linked to your general health, therefore, it is doubly important to maintain good dental health at all times.

See Your Dentist for Regular Examinations and Cleanings

By seeing your dentist at least twice a year for dental examinations and cleanings, you can help prevent any dental health issues before they cause pain or require more comprehensive or expensive treatment. Regular visits allow your dentist to keep track of your oral health and recommend an individualized dental hygiene maintenance regimen to address areas of concern.

Happy New Year!!

For the new year and for years to come you should resolve to improve your health, dental hygiene habits, quit smoking, drink in moderation, and improve your overall diet. Your teeth and body, and loved ones will thank you for it for many years to come!  Bring in the new year with a smile!