Primary Dental Care Blog

Questions about Dentistry

4 Foods that Will Give You a Whiter Smile

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Our Anaheim dentists have said it before and they’ll say it again: one of the fastest ways to get a boost of dental confidence (and a great boost of confidence overall) is to get whiter teeth.

And while you might be thinking: “Is it really that easy? Just get whiter teeth?” The reality is that white teeth don’t need to be that hard to attain. Naturally, there are plenty of over the counter solutions (discussed in our blog post: Why Our Dentists in Garden Grove Frequently Recommend In-Office Whitning) and in-office whitening can make a very big difference, very quickly for just about any dental patient.

But many patients wonder – “what can I do without whitening?” And that’s where your diet comes in. Naturally keeping your teeth whiter often starts with diet – and by avoiding the most prevalent sources of stains like coffee, tea, and wine.

But what can you eat to actually help your teeth get whiter? Read on to learn.

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5 Reasons to Take Your Dental Health Seriously

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Your teeth are not an island unto themselves. Which is to say, not taking care of your teeth and not taking care of your body are one and the same. If you aren’t taking care of your teeth you are not taking care of your body.

With this in mind, our dentists in the Anaheim area will cover a few of the most important ways ignoring your dental health can have a negative impact on your overall health.

Ignoring your teeth can….

Hurt your heart: Studies have shown that people who live with gum disease (especially for an extended period of time) compared to those who don’t end up having issues with heart and artery problems more often than those who don’t.

While dentists and doctors aren’t exactly sure why this relationship exists, there are plenty of theories. Primary among those theories is this: that harmful bacteria from your mouth often has a much easier pathway into your blood-stream when you have gum disease, this bacteria then has the freedom to attach to plaque in your blood vessels – which can up your risk of heart attack.

Affect diabetes and blood sugar: More often than not, people who suffer from diabetes are much more likely to also suffer from gum disease. This can be because diabetes is often accompanied by infection. Other research shows that gum disease can make it harder for your body to control its levels of blood sugar. On top of this, treating gum disease can also help alleviate diabetes symptoms.

Impact fertility: Did you know that the average woman of childbearing age with gum disease takes an average of two months longer to get pregnant than a woman without gum disease? On top of this, research has also shown that women with gum disease are also potentially at a higher risk of miscarriage.

Our word to the wise: take care of your teeth. It’s much easier to take care of your entire body by including your teeth as part of your overall health and not an entirely separate. Do you have questions about your health? Some of your solutions could start with your teeth.

Eat Like a Caveman For Healthier Teeth

These days, when it comes to diets – the “caveman” or paleo diet is all the rage. And there’s actually a pretty good reason for it: because it advocates eating simpler food that contains far fewer refined ingredients. Our dentists in the Anaheim area tend to agree.

But the thing is, the average caveman might have had even healthier teeth than modern man. That’s not to say that your average caveman had a movie-star smile with perfectly white teeth. But what they did have is teeth that are stronger and healthier than ours because they had much more good bacteria to help fight the bad bacteria that end up contributing to gum disease

This information comes from a new study  by Nature Geneticst that studied over 30 ancient skeletons to analyze their plaque, genes, and more.  But the thing is, by making your diet more like the cavemen, you can help give your teeth a leg-up against bacteria and decay.

Eat like paleolithic man. One of the most simple reasons that cavemen had better teeth than modern man is because cavemen weren’t exposed to processed or enriched foods.

So whether you go “whole hog” on the paleo-diet or not, it can definitely benefit your teeth to eat simpler. Researchers found that as prehistoric people shifted from hunting and gathering to farming – they experienced a drastic decrease in bacterial diversity. That was multiplied even further when processed foods like flour and sugar came onto the scene.

But the simpler tip is this: eat more simply. By choosing more natural nuts, produce, and grains and higher-quality meets – you can successfully give your teeth a much better chance against bacteria.

Have questions about your teeth? Our dentists in Garden Grove can help. Contact us today to learn more about how to eat healthier for a healthier mouth. 

 

 

What Can I Do About Sensitive Teeth?

Keep these 3 tips in mind to avoid staining your teeth

Keep these  tips in mind to help with sensitive teeth.

Nobody likes it when the simple act of eating or drinking – something to be enjoyed – instead results in feelings of discomfort and pain.

If your teeth are feeling extra sensitive – you might wonder what there is you can do to cut back on the sensitivity and reclaim some of that enjoyment for yourself.

Fortunately, there are several changes that you can make in your day to day oral hygiene routine. However – do remember: completely reversing your dental sensitivity is not a quick-fix. It can take changing habits, changing the way you brush, being aware of the brush you’re using, and it can even involve changing your diet.

Read on to learn what our dentists in the Garden Grove area have to say about reversing your tooth sensitivity problem.

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When Indigestion Signals Dental Danger

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Do you suffer from indigestion that never seems to go away?

You might find yourself keeping a daily supply of antacids, or even attempting to adjust your diet to cut-back on the heartburn that you live with every day. But while you remain focused on what you’re eating and how your digestive system feels – are you taking a look at your oral hygiene?

Our dentists in Anaheim recommend you do.

If you have indigestion or a stomach ache that’s recurring, there is a chance that it’s your teeth to blame – and not your diet, or your digestive system. So ask yourself: do you have a hard time chewing?

When patients begin to have a hard time chewing their food properly, they often begin to swallow food that’s bigger than it should be. That can be pretty tough on your stomach, and if it’s happening to you it’s important to pinpoint why it’s happening.

Whether you have a tooth-ache, a cracked molar, or a more serious problem like a dental abscess that needs root canal treatment – getting to the bottom of the problem is important. If you’re a denture wearer – it could also mean that your dentures are no longer fitting properly, and could need an adjustment.

What you should do: If you suffer from frequent indigestion and have been noticing pain, soreness, and similar symptoms from your teeth – a visit to your family dentist could be exactly what you need.

Let our dentists in Garden Grove assess the situation – not only can we help remedy your indigestion, but we can also provide relief from the dental problems you’ve long-since “gotten used to” that could have created the problem in the first place.

 

Why Loosing the Teeth You Can’t See Is Still a Problem

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Yesterday, our dentists in the Anaheim area weighed in on a topic that many patients around the world have to contend with at some point in their lives: Dentures.

The thing about dentures is this: it’s very possible for a dental patient to live their entire life with their natural teeth. Unfortunately, if you’re not good at maintaining a good oral hygiene routine and allow your flossing and brushing to lag – it becomes a habit. And a habit of not taking care of your teeth can easily go on for years. It’s these “years” of neglect that can put your teeth in a difficult position.

But what if you’re just missing a tooth or two “in the back” of your mouth where nobody can see them? Many times, patients will say something like “Well, I lost a molar or two in the back of my mouth – but nobody can see them, so who cares? I can live with that.”

The thing is, that while people might not be able to see your missing teeth “in the back” – they still pose a problem that will eventually be visible from the front as well.

Think of your teeth as a tight and organized line. When one person gets out of place in line – they can influence the person behind them to also stand out of place. When this happens, misalignment can cascade all the way to the back of the line. Unfortunately, the same thing can happen with your teeth. When you have fewer teeth holding their “coworkers” in-line, it’s easier for the rest to go off in their own direction.

In order to prevent needing all of your teeth replaced by either a dental bridge, implant, or denture – it’s important to make sure that you take good care of all the teeth you have, not just the ones you can see.

Are you at risk of losing teeth? If your back-teeth are loose, shifting, or already gone – talk to our dentists in Anaheim today to learn what option is best to prevent more visible problems in the future.

Toothpaste Ingredients Worth Staying Away From

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When you brush your teeth, you might be thinking about the fact that you’re carefully brushing more than what you’re brushing with. Unfortunately, paying attention to what you’re brushing with is an integral component of effective brushing.

So today, our dentists in the Anaheim area are here to share with you some of the ingredients to avoid when it comes to your toothpaste.

Microbeads

Microbeads are one “ingredient” that created a bit of controversy over the years. What toothpaste manufacturers say is that they give the paste greater scrubbing power. While this may be true, and they are totally nontoxic – these plastic beads can pass through you and then into the environment. Here, they can bind with toxins that then get introduced to the environment. Which is not a good thing. Our dentists recommend avoiding them.

Blue 1

Ever seen that nice, cool blue color that gets included with many toothpastes? If it’s FD&C Blue 1, it’s a synthetic color that’s been created through the use of petroleum derivatives. The bad part is that these can build-up in your body over an extended period of times. While scientists haven’t pinpointed the risks that these colors create – they can be linked to problems like allergies and possibly even cancer.

There is quite a bit of uncertainty with the actual risk of food dyes. But think about it this way: you don’t need your toothpaste to be colored. Why not avoid the risk?

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate

This one is very popular, and is added to toothpaste to give it that nice foaming quality that helps you believe your toothpaste is really doing its work. The thing is – it’s all an illusion. You don’t need your toothpaste to foam-up in order for it to do its job. While this material does not cause cancer or any other serious problems – it can irritate some patients and contribute to inflammation.

 

Bonus: Bacteria

Another ingredient you don’t want in your toothpaste is bacteria. While toothpaste manufacturers don’t include it – you might be unknowingly adding it yourself by not being careful about how you store or clean your toothbrush. Make sure it’s dry and stored away from your toilet to minimize the introduction of any bacteria to your mouth.

5 Signs You May Need Dentures

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At our dental practice in the Anaheim area, many patients come through our doors looking for the most effective way to restore their smile.

There are truly a wide variety of solutions available, ranging from dental veneers and dental bridges to a full set of replacement teeth through dental implants and dentures.

For many patients, dentures strike a nice balance between price and attractiveness. Better yet, denture technology has gotten better and better over the years  – making them both secure, attractive, and long-lasting for patients of all ages.

But how do you know if you actually need dentures? Our Anaheim dentists can help. And, if you have any more in-depth questions please don’t hesitate to contact us or schedule an appointment if you live in the area.

You’ve had a history of gum disease

The classic symptoms of gum inflammation are tender, swollen, red, and bleeding gums. If you’ve lived with these symptoms for quite a while – there’s a good chance you’ve been living with gum-disease, which affects up to 70% of adults in America at some point in their lives.

While gum disease doesn’t always mean you’re going to need dentures, a lifetime of gum disease can make the likelihood much more certain.  Fortunately, if you take care of gum disease early – it is easy to treat and reverse.

Your Teeth are Already Loose

If your teeth are already loose, shifting, or the gaps between teeth are gradually getting wider and wider – you could be experiencing changes to the underlying bone-structure of your mouth due to gum disease.

If your teeth are loose, it could mean that you have advanced gum disease. Sometimes, extensive periodontal treatment can help reverse this issue. Other times, teeth might need to be extracted.

You’re Already Missing Teeth

If you’re already missing teeth, there’s a good chance that you might some-day need to get fitted for some kind of denture. If you’ve already lost two or more teeth – you need to have them replaced. Otherwise, remaining teeth can fall-out-of-place and continue to pose further problems.

 

Need dentures in the Anaheim area? Our dentists can help. Contact us today for a free consultation.

 

Should You Be Using a Water Flosser?

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Okay. So you’ve gotten better about flossing your teeth – and you’ve made it to the point where you’re flossing practically every day.

Congratulations!

So where do you go from here? Is this the end? Will you know live the rest of your days one of the proud and few that floss every day – or is there something more to do?  Our dentists in Anaheim have the answer.

This might be where you wonder if you would benefit from using something like a water flosser or waterpik. But first, what is a water-flosser? Essentially, what these little dental-tech wonders do is shoot a tiny stream of high-pressure water between your teeth.

The question that some patients might have is whether or not the waterpik does as good a job as regular old string-floss when it comes to cleaning debris and bacteria out of your teeth. The answer here is, unfortunately, a bit uncertain.

While waterpiks have been shown to be great at removing bio-film from your teeth – stubborn bits of food and plaque are generally better handled by a trusty piece of dental floss.  So if you can, it’s still a good idea to floss. But for some patients – a waterpik could be the perfect tool to have.

When patients should include a waterpik in their daily oral hygiene routine:

  • You or your children have braces. Who wants straighter teeth at the cost of decay and cavities? Nobody. If its hard to get string floss between your teeth – which is a very real possibility when you wear braces – an easier solution can often be found in a simple waterpik.  The best part is, even a young patient can successfully operate the tool – meaning “I wore braces” is never a suitable excuse for poor dental-health after they come off.
  • Flossing is physically difficult: If you have poor dexterity and simply have a hard time getting the floss to work the way you need it to – a waterpik can successfully fill the gaps. Just because your hands don’t work like they use to doesn’t mean your mouth can’t be as healthy as possible.  If this sounds like you, a waterpik could be the perfect tool to have.
  • Gum sensitivity: If your gums bleed when you use traditional floss – a water flosser can often be a much gentler alternative while they recover and toughen-up.

 

 

What Your Teeth Are Telling You

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If your teeth could talk, what would they say?

They might tell you why one of your teeth suddenly became crooked. Or why your gums are all of a sudden bleeding and sore. But unfortunately – they can’t. All they can do is react to the stimuli that they’re presented with.

So, if you keep telling yourself that “it’s probably nothing.” Stop.

Small problems have a way of becoming larger problems, and if you ignore your mouth’s pleas for essential help in the form of brushing, flossing, rinsing, and professional dental care – you can run into some problems.

So today, our dentists in Garden Grove are coming to you with 5 of the signals your teeth are trying to send you.

Pain that Aches

If you’re experiencing a dull, throbbing, achy pain – there is a chance that it could be nothing. But that’s only if it lasts a couple days.

If dull, throbbing, achy pain lasts for more than a few days or even a week – it could be a good sign that you have some sort of problem. This could either indicate the presence of a cavity that’s forming – or, it could be an indication that you’re grinding your teeth while you sleep.

If your toothaches accompany swollen gums, swollen glands, or even bad-breath – it could be the signal of an abscessed tooth that requires root canal treatment.

Sharp Tooth Pain

If your tooth pain is a sharp, sudden dental pain that comes along when you’re biting down or applying some pressure to your tooth – it’s an even better signal that you may be experiencing decay or a cavity.

Like with pain that aches, if it’s coming from a single spot – and only every now and then, you can rest breath a sigh of relief because t

Teeth that are suddenly crooked or loose

If your teeth are suddenly loose or crooked, it’s certainly a cause for concern that doesn’t require a dentist to point out that there’s a problem.

If you haven’t done a great job of protecting or caring for your teeth every day, bacteria can lead to the formation of plaque and tartar. When tartar spreads to your gums – it can also eventually spread to the bones that support your mouth and jaw. If your teeth are becoming loose or crooked – it could mean that their supports are suffering.