Garden Grove Dental Arts : Marianna Ibrahim DDS

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How Your Teeth Prematurely Age, and What You Can Do

Did You Know?: Dentures can help you start smiling again. It only takes a small adjustment period.

Just like every other part of your body, things tend to change as you age. Sometimes, your joints start to go. Other times, you start to notice that it’s getting tougher and tougher to both see and hear things. But what about your teeth? To provide some of the answers, our family dental experts are going to weigh in.

Wear and Tear is often one of the first signs of aging for your teeth. With all the grinding, biting, and chewing that they do – the hard shell on your teeth (enamel) can eventually wear away as your teeth get used, and over time – your teeth can also begin to flatten in parts.

Gum Health is another concern you should remain aware of as your teeth get older. Every day, your teeth and gums are constantly attacked by bacteria and plaque. When it doesn’t get removed, it can influence inflammation, bleeding, and swelling around your gums. Over time, this can lead to your gums eventually pulling away from your teeth – which can form pockets that can collect more bacteria that ultimately accelerates damage.

But that’s not all, general wear and tear – along with overbrushing can also lead to gum recession, which is something our dentists near Anaheim see frequently. When it’s minor, you might only notice some sensitivity here and there, but more severe recession is where the term “long in the tooth” came about – meaning that your teeth appear longer due to receded gums.

As you age, it’s also important to watch out for dry mouth. The importance of saliva is one thing our dentists frequently remind patients of all ages about. As you get older, your mouth will eventually produce less saliva – this can increase the rate at which decay forms in your mouth. In addition to age, this can also be caused by a number of medications. To combat this – be sure to always drink plenty of water, and try to have some sugar-free gum on hand to stimulate saliva production.

Can Marijuana Hurt Your Teeth? Possibly, Our Orange County Dentists Weigh In

 

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With the approval of California’s Proposition 64, it is now legal for adults over the age of 21 to possess and grow marijuana, without a medical license. However, people will not immediately have a place to legally buy nonmedical marijuana. Despite this, many patients across the country already use marijuana semi-regularly. As your dentist (not a police officer, or your employer), what we have to tell you is that this is your choice. Are there dental risks? Yes – there are some. Some studies do show that, while smoking anything is harmful – many of the chemicals that are present in tobacco are not present in cannabis. That being said, we don’t recommend anyone smoke anything.

So, whether you currently use marijuana for medical or nonmedical reasons – do be aware of the potential risks to your oral health. Read on to learn more. If you have any questions for our dentists in Anaheim, feel free to get in touch – we’re not here to judge.

Dry Mouth, Cavities, and Gum Problems: What to Be Aware of if You Use Cannabis

While it’s been shown that cannabis far less likely to cause oral cancer than tobacco, there is still a slight risk. Outside of cancer, however – smoking, vaporizing, and ingesting cannabis can definitely have an impact on your teeth in other ways.

This often begins with dry mouth – also commonly referred to as cottonmouth. When you ingest marijuana, cottonmouth occurs because of the way THC impacts receptors in your jaws glands that produce saliva – which can sometimes lead to dry mouth. Unfortunately, part of saliva’s purpose is to rinse your teeth of debris and bacteria that can potentially cause decay and cavities.

While dry mouth might be bearable, frequently dry mouth can impact your ability to taste, swallow, and speak. On top of this, it can increase the production of plaque (due to the saliva not washing bits of food, sugar, and junk away).

Some tips…

When you are using cannabis, be sure to drink plenty of water (not a sugary drink) – and try to remember to take a sip every few minutes to keep your mouth nice and moist. While you’re at it, consider switching to the healthier alternative to smoking – vaporizing, which uses steam instead of smoke, and always remember to breath through your nose instead of your mouth.

You can also chew sugar-free gum to help stimulate the production of more saliva.

Other factors that can decrease saliva production include high caffeine intake and mouthwashes that contain alcohol.

Have a question about your teeth? Our dentists near Anaheim have your back. Give us a call to learn how we can help. 

 

How Your New Gym Routine Could Hurt Your Teeth

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Every New Year, thousands upon thousands of individuals endeavor to get healthier, lose weight, and become more fit.

We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again – more often than not, people don’t make New Year’s resolutions about their oral hygiene (unless of course they work at a certain dental clinic in Anaheim).

However, it is worth mentioning that athletes should be careful when it comes to their teeth. Because while exercise and fitness generally show a positive correlation with oral hygiene, there are some downsides.

Dry Mouth

When you exercise intensely, you tend to breathe more heavily through your open. Unlike nasal breathing, this tends to dry out your mouth much quicker, which cuts down on saliva – which can give bacteria a new opportunity to thrive.

It’s also been shown that open mouth breathing and the dryness it encourages can also contribute to tooth decay and cavities due to the lack of protection from saliva.

Sports Drinks

Energy drinks and sports drinks are often one of the first thirst quenchers athletes turn to when it comes to replacing electrolytes and re-charging. While this can often be helpful for sports performance, it’s the exact opposite for your teeth. Because of the high amount of acid (and sometimes sugar) in these drinks, they’re a great way to make your teeth even more vulnerable. When combined with a lack of saliva from open mouth breathing during intense exercise – your teeth are at a significantly more vulnerable state.

Are you an athlete worried about your teeth? Our dentists in the Anaheim area can help prevent damage and reverse damage. To learn more, get in touch with our friendly team today!

How To Know When You’re Overdue for a Dental Cleaning

So, you’re not perfect and you don’t go to the dentist’s office every 6 months for a routine cleaning where everything works out great, you get a new toothbrush, and you go home feeling like you’ve done everything right when it comes to your oral hygiene. Who is?

Gum disease and chronic bad breath make the top 100 list for the most common diseases and disorders, meaning if you don’t have perfect oral health – there’s a great chance you’re not alone. In fact, we can guarantee it!

So, no matter why you’re avoiding the dentist – whether it’s because you don’t have insurance or you simply don’t like going to the dentist, there are solutions. First of all, remember that many dentists are happy to work with you to come up with some sort of payment plan if you don’t have dental insurance. And if you just don’t feel comfortable sitting in the dentist’s chair, there’s always sedation dentistry – which uses something like “laughing gas” to ease your nerves before dental procedures.

Many patients wonder, “What are the signs that you’ve gone too long without a dental cleaning?”

For our dentists in the Anaheim area, the answer is usually pretty simple. If you’re not accustomed to having major problems with your teeth, but you haven’t been to the dentist’s in a while – you should expect to at least have some tartar to contend with. You see, plaque forms all day every day on your teeth. By being good about brushing and flossing – you can take care of most of this plaque, but you’re bound to miss some somewhere, especially in the nooks and crannies of your teeth. When plaque is given a chance to linger, it gets easier and easier to form and spread -which can lead to it eventually going through a hardening process (calcification) to become “dental calculus” – or tartar for less of a mouthful.

However, If you haven’t been to the dentists in a while and you suspect you might have some lingering problems – here’s what you should look out for.

Swelling gums, and blood during brushing and flossing

Swollen gums and frequent bleeding while flossing or brushing are both common symptoms of gum disease – an infection that forms around your teeth. Fortunately, if you catch it early (when it’s a pretty minor) you can stop it in its tracks and heal your gums. If left untreated, bacteria can eventually work its way all the way to your heart.

Longer teeth

If your teeth are appearing longer than you think they should, take a look at your gums. Do they seem lower on your tooth? If so, there’s a chance you might have some gum recession – which can vary greatly in significance. It is often causes by nail biting, grinding, over-brushing, and smoking. One of the earliest symptoms of g

Consistently bad breath

If you ate a real garlicky piece of pizza, bad breath is inevitable. However, if you start noticing that your bad breath doesn’t seem to go away – or you have a bad taste in your mouth no matter what you do – there could be an infection somewhere in your mouth. This can stem from something like gum disease or an infected tooth that needs a root canal treatment or extraction.

Why Teeth Sometimes Feel “Fuzzy”

Have you ever dragged your tongue across the front of your teeth, only to be met by the somewhat gross sensation that your teeth seem to be covered in tiny, fuzzy sweaters?

Don’t worry, you’re not alone and there’s probably nothing wrong with your teeth — as long you’re good about brushing and flossing.

But what is that fuzzy stuff anyhow? Our dentists in the Anaheim area weigh in

More often than not, healthy teeth are also smooth teeth. But when you feel that special kind of roughness on one or more teeth it tends to come from a couple different sources.

You Just Woke Up

The most common time you’ll experience “fuzzy teeth” is in the morning, after having slept all night. However – after brushing, flossing, and rinsing with an antiseptic mouthwash, the grittiness of your teeth should go away.

It could be plaque and/or tartar…

There are some additional causes behind teeth that don’t feel too clean, and one of the other most common sources is plaque. Plaque can and will collect on your teeth every day. If you don’t remove it, it will eventually harden (or calcify) into what we call dental calculus (or tartar). Tartar is troublesome because it, essentially, creates a shelter for bacteria to collect and thrive on your teeth. The longer tartar isn’t taken care of, the greater chance bacteria has to gain a foothold on your teeth and spend some quality time to do some serious long-term damage. It’s this sort of long-term damage that our dentists in the Anaheim area work to prevent (and reverse).

 

Unfortunately, tartar (unlike plaque) can’t be removed with regular brushing, flossing, and rinsing. Your dentist must get access to your teeth and have the opportunity to work away the tartar to prevent any more problems.

Are you eating better?

Most typically, a furry feeling on your teeth is typically due to plaque or a long night of sleep. However, some foods like chocolate and green leafy vegetables (like kale and spinach) tend to carry more of a particular acid that can contribute to a furry feeling on your teeth. If you’re eating more greens than usual – this could be the culprit, and isn’t something you should worry too much about.

How Your Diet Could Be Affecting Your Teeth

how-diets-affect-teeth-dental

Every time a new year rolls around, people across the country (and likely, around the world) try to change their habits – or adopt new ones, all with the end goal of hopefully losing a few pounds or more.

In fact, according to NBC News, New Years’ resolutions related to getting healthier dominated yet again, with over 62 million searches (a 13% increase over 2016) and a clear front-runner for most popular New Years Resolution, yet again.

But more often than not, people tend to forget about their teeth. The truth is, changing your diet can potentially change your teeth as well. Our dentists near Anaheim recommend: If you’re dieting as part of a New Years resolution, or for any reason at all, do remember to stay on top of your teeth just as well as you’re staying on top of your diet.

Dental Side Effects From Ketogenic / Paleo Diets

When it comes to paleo diets that are very low carb, it’s not uncommon for your breath to begin to smell pretty bad. This is often one of the most sure-fire signs of ketosis, which is what happens when your body begins to burn its fat stores for fuel instead of carbs. To avoid this, you can simply a) brush your teeth more b) drink more water or c) eat more, natural breath fresheners or chew gum. However, it can also help to actually eat a carb or two – because too much ketosis can lead to some pretty dangerous side effects.

Juice Diets / Fruit Detox Dental Side Effects

Generally, juice and fruit detoxes  tend to introduce a higher amount of sugars and acids into your mouth. This can lead to accelerated damage to your teeth, as the sugars and acids work away at your enamel and contribute to the formation of cavities.

While a short juice cleanse might seem tempting due to the “promise” of a quick couple pounds to be shed – they are not entirely harmless and should only be considered with both the knowledge of your doctor – and a careful eye on your teeth.

How Low Fat Diets Impact Teeth

When it comes to your diet having an impact on your teeth – low fat diets are no easier than other popular diets. There are still some side effects you should be aware of to ensure your body gets what it needs, everwhere it needs it.

A low-fat diet can sometimes inhibit your body’s absorption of vitamins that are fat-soluble, such as vitamins A, E, D, and K. Vitamin D, in particular, is a big one because your body takes it from the sun and converts it to help your body absorb and use calcium. When this doesn’t happen, bones don’t get the support they need and begin to break down – which can include the loss of your teeth.

Have questions about your dental health?

Our dentists in orange County are the experts. From the youngest mouths to the oldest, our advanced treatment techniques and friendly staff have made healthy (and happy) smiles a priority for Anaheim and beyond. To learn more about how we might be able to help – please don’t hesitate to schedule a consultation today.

How Your Nutrients Benefit Your Teeth

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Keeping your teeth white, strong, and healthy doesn’t actually take much. On top of trying to see your dentist twice a year and maintaining a strong oral hygiene routine (brushing and flossing, twice a day), the one other truly helpful thing you can do is eat a healthy, balanced diet. Fortunately, this is one of the easiest tips our family dentists in the Anaheim area can recommend. But it’s up to you to take the steps necessary to make it possible.

But what does that mean in terms of what you need to be getting out of your food, and what kind of food it is that’s going to get it to you.

How probiotics improve your teeth

It’s true that the leading source of decay is the wrong kind of bacteria in your mouth. However, there are also plenty of good bacterias that are designed to help keep bad bacteria at bay. This is where probiotics can help – with foods like, yogurt, kombucha, and miso.

How vitamins Improve Your Teeth

Vitamin D is one of the most important nutrients for your teeth because of the way it enables your body to absorb calcium – which supports both your bones and your teeth. While the best source of Vitamin D is generally the sun – you can also find vitamin D in egg yolk, cod liver oil, and fish.

In addition to vitamin D, vitamin C is also incredibly important. Not only does it help strengthen blood vessels to help fight against inflammation for healthier gums, but it also actively helps produce collagen. Collagen helps support your mouth in the fight against gum disease. If you don’t get enough Vitamin C, your gums are much more susceptible to inflammation and gum disease. It’s generally not a secret where you can find Vitamin C, in fruits and vegetables like oranges, bell peppers, kiwis, strawberries, kale, and more.

How antioxidants improve your teeth

Antioxidants are celebrated pretty much everywhere for their ability to help systems throughout your mouth. Our dentists in the Anaheim area also recommend antioxidants for healthier teeth. By fighting bacteria that contributes to inflammation an periodontal disease – antioxidants are an easy to find weapon in the fight against cavities. Where can you find them? Apples, grapes, nuts, raisins, and beans.

Daily Hacks for a Healthier Smile

Whether you’re starting the new year with the resolution to “be better” about taking care of your teeth or you’re simply always on the hunt for new ways to lower your dental bill and prevent cavities – do we have some tips for you.

Every year our dentists around Anaheim and Garden Grove try to pull together novel ways to care for your teeth that you might not have thought of yet. Today, we’re coming at you with 3 quick tips to keep your pearly whites out of the emergency dentist’s chair.

Take your vitamins

Need we mention it again? By taking vitamin D you actively help prevent cavities. The best part? All you have to do is get outside and move around for a bit, and voila – one extra bit of defense for your teeth.

Chew Gum

Is gum candy or not? We’ re not quite sure – but as long as it’s sugar free it’s a great way to get stubborn bits of food out of cracks while simulating saliva flow – which helps keeps your teeth free and clear of bacteria and debris.

Pack a Carrot, Or Piece of Celery

We know, it’s not as exciting as a candy bar. But if you can forego the candy bar for a bag of chips (we won’t tell your primary care doctor), and balance it out with a crunchy vegetable – you will be providing a lot of abrasive action for your teeth.

Of course, the more important part of the equation here is the healthy vegetable, but who are we to deny you a little fun? Crunchy foods just tend to be a bit easier on your teeth by not allowing sticky sugar to cling to your teeth for extended periods of time.

Concerned about your teeth? 

Our nearby dentists in Garden Grove serve patients of all ages. Contact us today to get in touch.

 

 

5 Dead Simple Dental Tips

Even if you’ve always had incredibly healthy teeth and completely uneventful dental checkups, there’s one important thing to remember: there’s probably a way you could make your dental hygiene routine even better. Our dentists work with patients from the Orange County and Anaheim area so frequently, we can almost always find some way to improve.

When it comes to bacteria fighting it’s constant battle against your teeth, one thing can be for certain – it’s great at finding the path of least resistance. Crack in a molar? You can bet bacteria will work its way in to cause trouble. Enamel thin in a certain spot, causing sensitivity? It could be your enamel telling you that its line of defense needs attention.

With all of that said, being as comprehensive as possible (without going crazy) can help make sure you always have great dental checkups. One way to easily improve the effectiveness of your oral hygiene routine might not be something you ever considered….

Vitamin D.

That’s right, check your vitamin D levels. Studies have even shown that, more often than not, patients with high instances of decay and cavities tend to have lower vitamin D levels.

Vitamin D is an important compound that comes primarily from the sun;s light. This helps our bodies absorb calcium  which supports our teeth. Fortunately, in Orange County this is one thing we don’t have to worry about too much. But even in a sunny state like ours – if you work indoors, you could still be vitamin D deficient. If you’re not sure, you can always get a blood test at your doctor’s office (usually covered by insurance).

In addition to being shown to reduce the risk of cavities, studies have even suggested that a pregnant mother who takes vitamin D supplements, can – to some degree – play a role in reducing the likelihood that her children will get dental cavities.

 

 

 

 

“My Teeth are Suddenly Loose or Crooked, What’s Happening?”

For many people, even the slightest hint that a tooth is loose or out of place can cause a serious panic.

This isn’t unsurprising, and as dentists in the Orange County area, we completely understand how worried some patients can get when it comes to their appearance. After all – just think about it, it’s challenging to make eye contact when you talk to a friend or colleague. A lot of time, so as not to seem like you’re staring into their soul, you’ll look at their mouth or their teeth as they talk. It’s just a part of the way we communicate. So what happens if you start to notice that a tooth is loose or crooked?

If your tooth (or teeth) feel loose, have become crooked, or are starting to fall out all together – let us put it this way: there’s a good chance you don’t need one of our emergency dentists in Anaheim to tell you that something is wrong.  More often than not this is a sure-fire sign of advanced periodontal disease – meaning that your teeth simply don’t have a strong enough foundation to stay in your mouth. It also causes significant bone-loss around your jaw and teeth – further weakening the entire support system that your teeth rely on to stay in place.

 How does this happen? 

Generally, if you have periodontal problems bad enough to result in your teeth falling out – you’ve probably been neglecting your teeth for quite some time. If you haven’t been brushing your teeth twice a day, flossing, and eating right – this is likely the cause.

 On the other hand, if you’ve been great about your oral hygiene but you’re still having problems with loose, crooked, or teeth that are falling out – you should be even more concerned with calling a nearby emergency dentist. If you’re not a smoker or tobacco user, problems like high blood pressure, diabetes, and certain medications can lead to a weakened support system for your teeth, which can lead to tooth loss. However, when it comes to medications, this is generally limited to more serious treatments like, cancer therapy, steroids, epilepsy medication, and calcium channel blockers.

Are you experiencing tooth loss?

Our dentists have helped patients bounce back from tooth loss and teeth that have become loosened for a variety of reasons. If you’re concerned about your smile, our emergency dentists can help. Even more so – if you have a tooth that’s recently fallen out, it’s important to seek immediate care to prevent further damage.