Wishing Everyone A Healthy And Safe St. Patrick’s Day 2020.
We are experiencing a turbulent and scary time as a global society. The development of the novel coronavirus (also known as covid-19) has upended many lives and changed others forever. Dental care can sometimes take a back seat in the medical community and in cases like this rightfully so. However, as we have noted many times before on this blog, your dental health is intimately connected to your overall health and immune system. A dental office might be one of the safest places to be during this crisis. On a normal day, dentists follow sanitary and disinfection protocols that match what we are recommending now for everyone else. Maintaining regular dental visits will bring normalcy to our lives in a time when things may not feel so normal.
Dental Health And The Coronavirus
-Maintain Regular Dental Hygiene At Home. Doubly important now to keep our immune systems working properly and keep oral bacteria at bay. Periodontal disease causes an immune response in our bodies due to reaction with bacteria and plaque. This will weaken our immune response but will also affect the cardiovascular system which can delay healing. This should include brushing, flossing, tongue scraping, along with listerine rinsing. Following completion of your at home regimen, wipe down the sink and faucet with bleach wipes to ensure you do not pass anything along to family members.
– Call Your Dentist If You Have Symptoms Of The Coronavirus. With our healthcare system overloaded, your dentist can be an educated person to discuss what may or may not be going on with your health. For many, first signs of any symptoms and they may panic. Main coronavirus symptoms include fever, difficulty breathing, and a dry cough. Be aware of the differences between influenza and even seasonal allergies. Generally a fever above 101 is cause for concern for coronavirus.
-Maintain Regular Dental Visits. If healthy and asymptomatic, it is recommended to continue treatment to stay healthy and oral disease free. This is especially important for dental hygiene visits and to receive regular examinations to avoid dental emergencies.
-Take Daily Vitamins and Extra Vitamin C. We tend to eat more comfort foods and carbohydrates during times of crisis. This can leave us without recieving the proper nutrition to keep up our health and immune systems in check. This can help ward off disease.
–Hand Washing Is More Important Than Ever. We have bad habits of touching our faces hundreds of times per day. If we keep our hands clean we will limit chances of passing any viruses or bacteria to ourselves. Proper hand washing techniques include using soap and hot water and for at least 20 seconds.
-Call Dentist Ahead. If you are nervous about sitting in a waiting room call ahead and let the dental staff know you are waiting in your car. The staff will call you when it is time to come in for your appointment. We try to keep everyone moving quickly but sometimes it is unavoidable to have people waiting in the waiting room even if it is just for a few minutes.
Coronavirus And Dentistry Conclusion
As previously mentioned this is a scary time for all of us as a society. We will get through this and we will try to maintain some level of normalcy. Our office is always available for any questions you might have. If you are feeling ill or have been out of the country recently please call ahead and let us know, so we can make a determination if we need to reschedule your appointment for the safety of our staff as well as other patients.
February is national children’s dental health month. In celebration of kids all over below you will find some helpful tips to keep your children’s smile healthy and bright for a lifetime.
Helpful Pediatric Dental Hygiene Tips
–Watch What They Drink! – While fruit juice can be a very healthy alternative to energy drinks, soda, and other artificial drinks. Fruit juice has some dangerous dental health qualities as well. The high sugar content in these drinks can be damaging to your child’s smile increasing the risk of tooth decay. This is especially true if drinking thru a sippy cup or constantly drinking throughout the day with brushing or rinsing. A good tip is to mix in fruit juices with water. The water will help rinse away the damaging sugar and keep them hydrated on even the hottest days.
–Take The Lead For Dental Hygiene. Lead by example and show your children how to maintain a healthy smile by maintaining a solid dental hygiene regimen at home along with regular dental visits. Brushing and flossing can be a daily family activity in morning and evenings if possible. Not every family follows the same schedule so this might be tough to follow.
Tooth brushing should be at least 2 minutes long covering both inner and outer surfaces of our teeth. Flossing should be same way covering all tooth surfaces to ensure cleaning all over the mouth.
By the age of 2, your child should be able to brush and even floss properly with some limited help from you. If they are under the age of 2, you should be brushing and flossing for them to ensure they are learning from you as well as keeping their developing mouth clean.
Another good tip is to make brushing and flossing into a game with rewards. Keep a chart handy in the bathroom to work towards goals for your children. Before long these habits will become a part of the normal routine and rewards will no longer be needed.
–Keep Regular Dental Visits. Most fears that people have developed are from their parents. If a parent is afraid of the dentist, most children will also be afraid even without their own bad experiences. Your child should start regular dental visits by about the age of 1. This is usually when the first teeth begin to appear. Your child will also become familiar with the sights, sounds, and people in a dental office and feel comfortable over time.
–Chew Sugarless Gum. Many kids love chewing gum. Chewing gum is excellent for stimulating saliva production and cleaning our mouths during the day. However, the sugar can stick to our teeth causing more damage than benefit. Choose a sugarless gum to get the best of both worlds!
–Consider Dental Sealants. If your dentist has not already discussed them with you ask at your next visit. Dental sealants are a clear coating that goes over the biting surfaces of your child’s teeth covering the natural grooves where tooth decay likes to develop. Dental sealants are an excellent protectant against tooth decay.
Pediatric Dental Hygiene Conclusion
Keeping kids healthy is a top priority including their dental health. The hardest part for a kid is developing that routine so that it becomes natural and easy. Remember to schedule regular dental visits for examinations and professional cleanings.
In the age of instagram and selfie’s people are always looking for an edge to look better. Cosmetic dentistry offers many options to achieve a whiter, brighter smile. These can include teeth whitening, orthodontics, porcelain crowns, and especially porcelain veneers. Porcelain veneers can give you the smile you always dreamed about with minimal preparation and can dramatically change just about any smile.
Porcelain Veneers Explained
Using similar materials that are used in porcelain crowns, porcelain veneers are fingernail like thin pieces of porcelain that are bonded to your teeth in order to change the shape, color, and size of your teeth. Porcelain veneers are also sometimes referred to as “instant orthodontics” because you can even straighten your teeth. This will not work in extreme cases but can help adjust your smile in small increments.
The best part about porcelain veneers? This cosmetic dentistry treatment can be completed in as little as two dental visits and the veneers are individually fabricated and customized to fit your smile. They look completely natural when the treatment is completed. The porcelain will mimic your natural tooth in translucency as well as in reflection of light.
Characteristics Of Porcelain Veneers
Porcelain veneers have the following characteristics:
–Translucent qualities — Like natural tooth enamel, porcelain veneers are translucent, meaning they allow some light to pass through and reflect off the natural dental material. This gives the veneer a natural depth, providing for a dazzling smile.
–Color matching — If you are replacing multiple teeth, then all your veneers can be a natural, bright color. When covering just one or two teeth, porcelain veneers can easily be matched to the surrounding natural teeth in order to provide a consistently beautiful smile.
–Non-porous surface — Porcelain veneers are ceramic glass and are non-porous, preventing future stains from ruining your new smile.
Porcelain Veneers Visits
Porcelain veneer treatment is generally completed over the course of 2-3 dental visits. They are as follows:
Visit 1 – Consultation. This is when you will explain your concerns and wishes about your smile with your dentist. Your dentist can then explain if porcelain veneers are right for your individual smile and desires. In some cases, porcelain veneers are not the right treatment and more extensive treatment may be needed like orthodontics or porcelain crowns. Porcelain veneers can also be used in conjunction with those procedures to give you the smile you have always desired.
Visit 2 – Preparation Of Teeth. At this visit, your teeth will be prepared for the porcelain veneers to be custom fabricated. A small amount of tooth structure will be removed from each tooth included in treatment. In some cases, no tooth structure is necessary (these are referred to as “no prep” veneers). Your dentist will administer a local anesthesia to keep you comfortable during the procedure. Once the preparation of teeth is completed, your dentist will take a dental impression that will be used by the dental laboratory to fabricate your custom porcelain veneers.
Visit 3 – Completion Of New Smile. Once fabrication is complete by the dental laboratory, you will return for placement of porcelain veneers. The veneers will be placed on a trial basis to ensure proper fit, color, and shape. If the new veneers meet both your criteria then the dentist will bond them to your teeth.
Benefits Of Porcelain Veneers
Porcelain veneers are used in cosmetic dentistry to alter your front teeth in a variety of ways. These can include:
–Making shorter teeth longer.
–Reshaping a smile.
–Changing color (porcelain veneers can can be viewed as permanent teeth whitening)
-Restoring worn teeth with weak or worn down enamel.
–Close Gaps Between Teeth.
–Repairing cracked, chipped, or broken teeth.
–Minor Realignment Of Teeth. Porcelain veneers are also called “instant orthodontics” for this reason. They can straighten slightly out of place teeth to create a perfect smile.
Porcelain veneers are generally completed across the front 6 teeth on either the top or bottom or both. Single porcelain veneers can also be done to change individual teeth with minor flaws.
Additional Benefits Of Porcelain Veneers
Porcelain veneers can also change other parts of your face. This can include:
–Lip Enhancement – The extra layer that porcelain veneers add to teeth pushes the lips just slightly outward, can lead to fuller lips that look very natural. If more attention is needed Juvederm filler can help here as well.
–Strengthening sensitive teeth – Worn teeth lacking enamel will make patients feel twinges when their teeth are exposed to hot or cold. Porcelain veneers will strengthen the teeth by covering the exposed layers of the tooth leading to improved comfort.
Porcelain Veneers Conclusion
The use of porcelain veneers in cosmetic dentistry is considered a fairly conservative treatment. This is because minimal tooth structure is removed to give you fantastic results. However, it is important to note it is not a reversible procedure. Once the tooth structure is removed it is permanent. Porcelain veneers have the ability to transform an ordinary smile into an extraordinary smile. If you are interested in porcelain veneers speak to your dentist today and see if they are right for you!