Dentist Park Ridge | Ow! Your Guide to Canker Sores

Dentist Park Ridge, IL

A canker sore can make eating, drinking, and talking difficult and even painful. Maintaining your oral health by brushing and flossing may also be difficult with a sore in your mouth, but keeping up with your daily oral hygiene routine is an important step in the healing process. We’ve put together a short guide to everything you need to know about canker sores.

What do they look like?

Canker sores are usually small, round reddish sores. You’ll find them on the soft tissues of your mouth, such as your tongue, the sides of your mouth, and at the base of your gums. Occasionally, a sore might have a yellow or white colored center.

What causes them?

Among the most common causes of canker sores are injuries. This can happen from biting your lip or cheek, an injury from sports, or even vigorous brushing. Certain people are sensitive to toothpastes containing sodium lauryl sulfate, leading to sores. Foods may also cause canker sores in certain people. Chocolate, eggs, nuts, and spicy foods have been known to cause the sores. At times, a diet that is deficient in vitamin B-12 or zinc is the culprit.

What can I do?

Your best defense is to keep your mouth healthy. This means keeping up with your twice-daily brushing and daily flossing. With a mouth sore, it may be tempting to avoid the area when brushing your teeth. This can lead to a buildup of plaque and bacteria. Aid the healing process by keeping your mouth clean and healthy. You may also try a mouthwash formulated for mouth sores. When in doubt, or if pain persists, talk to our team.

Brush thoroughly but gently around sores. Most canker sores heal within a week. If you find you are regularly getting sores, or they are taking longer than one week to heal, schedule a visit to our office. We will assess your oral health and provide you with our expert advice.

For more information about oral health or to schedule your next visit, please contact our office. We look forward to seeing you.

Dentist Park Ridge | Fix Your Bad Breath For Good

Park Ridge Dentist

It’s probably safe to assume that you don’t want the first thing people notice about you to be your bad breath. In fact, depending on the frequency and severity of the odor, bad breath could be hurting you professionally and relationally. There are some obvious causes of bad breath, including foods with strong smells, illness, or dry mouth. However, if you’re finding that a good oral care routine that includes flossing, brushing, and mouthwash isn’t enough to fix the problem, our dental team can help. Below is some information about the common causes of and cures for bad breath. Contact our dental practice today to learn more and to schedule an examination and cleaning!

Bad breath, also called halitosis, can be caused by a variety of factors. Eating food with strong odors can cause them to linger on your breath. Particles of food left behind in your mouth can cause the buildup of odor-causing bacteria. Alcohol and tobacco can exacerbate unpleasant smells in your mouth. Tooth decay and gum disease can cause strong odors as the bacteria eats away at your mouth. Patients with diabetes can experience a buildup in ketones, causing bad breath. Bad breath therefore is not only an embarrassing nuisance; it can also be a warning sign of other health issues.

The most common cause of bad breath is poor oral hygiene, so there are some easy steps you can take at home to begin addressing the issue. Make sure you’re following a regular oral care routine that includes daily flossing, twice daily brushing, regular mouthwash rinses, and twice yearly professional cleanings. You should also take time to brush your tongue, and might want to invest in a tongue scraper to help keep it clean. Stay hydrated to avoid dry mouth by drinking plenty of water throughout the day. Quit smoking, which will have far reaching health benefits beyond improving your breath. If needed, alter your diet. Foods that are overly sugary, spicy, or seasoned can all cause bad breath, as well as items like onions, garlic, coffee, and alcohol.

If none of these steps alleviate your bad breath, it could be a sign of a more serious issue. To learn more about preventing bad breath, or to schedule an examination and professional cleaning with our dentist, contact our practice today!

Park Ridge Dentist | 5 Tips for Denture Wearers

Dentist in Park Ridge, IL

dentist park ridgeTaking care of your dentures can seem like an added chore. Don’t worry, with a little effort your dentures can stay clean. Here are 5 tips for keeping your dentures clean and your smile healthy.

1. Rinse Thoroughly

Prior to brushing, it helps to rinse your dentures off.  Run them through water to help wash away food and other small particles. Be extra careful when handling your fragile dentures. Avoid using hot or boiling water, as that could damage your dentures.

2. Clean Your Dentures

Just as you would brush your teeth, your dentures need to be brushed as well. Never use cleaning solutions while your dentures are in. Rather, remove your dentures and carefully brush using a soft toothbrush. Avoid using whitening toothpastes or harsh cleaning materials like bleach products. Talk to our dentist about the right type of cleaner for your dentures. Using too strong a solution can cause damage to your dentures.

3. Don’t Forget to Brush Your Teeth

You still need to take care of your natural teeth. Brush your teeth with a soft toothbrush. Be gentle when brushing and cleaning your gums. Cleaning your gums will help you reduce your risk of developing an oral infection. If your toothbrush is too rough on your gums, an alternative is to use gauze. Be sure to come see us if you are experiencing gum pain and we can make recommendations.

4. Keep Them Covered

When you remove your dentures for bed, be sure to keep them in a covered container overnight. Use a denture-soaking solution to keep them clean overnight. Water works as a substitute, as your dentures need moisture to retain their shape. If you have any questions about storing your dentures, talk to us and we’ll help you.

5. Care with Adhesives

It can sometimes be difficult to remove your dentures with an adhesive. If you are having trouble, try swishing warm water or a mouthwash around your mouth. Never use any cleaning solution, tool, or foreign object to remove your dentures. Take special care to ensure the grooves of your dentures that attach to your gums are clean and free of adhesive.

When taken care of properly, your dentures will provide you with a lasting smile. Be vigilant in keeping up with cleaning your dentures. If you have any questions about caring for your dentures, get in touch with our office. We would be happy to work with you to figure out a solution for your denture concerns.

For more tips on keeping your mouth healthy or to schedule your next appointment, contact us today.

Dental FAQs To Sink Your Teeth Into

Dentist in Park Ridge, IL

Did you know that about 75% of the United States population suffers from some stage of periodontal gum disease?  Take a look at some interesting dental facts that you can sink your teeth into.

For more information about you teeth, contact our dental office.

 

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The Truth Behind 5 Popular Dental Misconceptions

Dentist Park Ridge

Clearing up misconceptions about oral health can help improve personal oral hygiene efforts for a beautiful and healthier smile. If you keep up with your oral hygiene regimen, dental visits are significantly easier and dental care is more manageable.

Misconception #1 – My teeth are fine if I have no pain

Tooth decay (cavities) usually doesn’t cause pain until they become very severe. Once it gets to this stage, the amount of decay could lead to more invasive and costly treatments. Some of the most dangerous oral disorders, such as oral cancer and gum disease, typically don’t cause pain at all. It is important to keep up with scheduled dental appointments. Our dentist can diagnose problems even at its earliest stages when there is no pain.

Misconception #2 – Cavities are only caused by sweets

When you eat sweets, the bacteria in your mouth start consuming it and produce acid. This acid dissolves the enamel of the tooth, which results in tooth decay or cavities. However, this process happens when you eat anything that is a starch or carbohydrate. Food and snacks, such as crackers, bread, potato chips, fruit, peanut butter and pasta, have the same effect on your teeth.

Misconception #3 – If my gums bleed, I should stop flossing

Bleeding gums are often the first sign of gum disease. This happens when bacterial infections inflame your gums due to a lack of efficient cleaning. With regular brushing and flossing, gums will be much healthier and should rarely bleed. However, gum inflammation can occur despite best oral hygiene habits. In such instances, you should see improvement if you rinse with warm salt water and continuing to brush and floss.

Misconception #4 – Whiter teeth are healthier teeth

Healthy teeth come in a wide range of natural shades. Whiter teeth cannot show if there is an infection or cavity between the teeth. Although pure white teeth do not equate to healthier teeth, they should still be naturally on the whiter side.

Misconception #5 – Children are more prone to tooth decay

Tooth decay (cavities) can develop at any age. People assume children have poor brushing habits and are more prone to tooth decay. Cavities form when bacteria cause a loss or weakening in tooth enamel and eventually decay forms a hole in the tooth. This is usually seen in people with poor brushing and flossing habits, regardless of age.

Excellent oral health promotes overall good health and is definitely not a misconception. It is important to practice good oral hygiene habits. If you have any questions regarding your dental health, please contact our dentist.

What Does Your Oral Health Say About You

Park Ridge Dentist

Proper oral health care has been closely linked to your overall wellbeing. These four oral health symptoms can be signals of a stressful lifestyle, improper diet, poor dental hygiene and other health conditions.

Flat Ground-Down Teeth: Teeth grinding, or bruxism, results in issues with worn down or flat teeth. This can be caused by a joint dysfunction, but it can also be a stress signal. Specifically, Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction (TMD) can occur due to poorly functioning jaw muscles and can be a sign of a high stress lifestyle. Besides looking into less stressful activities, contact our office for advice on stopping bruxism.

Eroded and Crumbing Teeth: Chipped teeth and tooth surface loss can cause major dental pain and long-term health issues. This is usually relative to an unhealthy diet. One main cause is due to soft drinks, or high acidic intake. Beverages high in sugar and starches can erode teeth. Having the right diet can make all the difference in keeping your teeth healthy.

Inflamed Gums: Proper oral hygiene is key to optimal oral and overall health. Inflamed gums can indicate lack of consistent brushing, flossing and fluoride rinsing. Due to periodontitis, or gum disease, gums can be bothersome. It can include problems such as swelling, bleeding and soreness. Symptoms like these can be indicative of other serious health problems, such as diabetes and heart disease. Studies have shown that people with moderate to advanced gum disease are more likely to have heart disease than those with healthy gums.

Sensitive Teeth: Sensitive teeth, a common dental problem, can cause pain while eating or brushing. It is a condition that may result from receding gums, intense brushing or grinding. Sensitive teeth may also indicate a diet high in erosive or acidic foods, or even a cracked tooth. If you are experiencing sensitivity, you may need to reevaluate your diet or dental care regimen. Speak to our dentist about switching to a new toothpaste, which could help reduce discomfort by protecting the enamel.

Recognizing these issues, along with practicing proper dental hygiene, is a great step toward better oral and overall health. Visit our dentist on a regular basis for proper dental care and recommendations for a healthier you.