A is for Anxiety

Do you dread going to the Dentist? Does your palms start to sweat and your heart starts beating faster when you walk in the door?  Do you find yourself avoiding making an appointment because of your fears?  If this describes you, you are not alone.  Somewhere between 9% and 20% of Americans avoid going to the dentist because of anxiety or fear.

According to WebMD here are some of the most common reasons for dental anxiety:

  • Fear of pain. Fear of pain is a very common reason for avoiding the dentist. This fear usually stems from an early dental experience that was unpleasant or painful or from dental “pain and horror” stories told by others. Thanks to the many advances in dentistry made over the years, most of today’s dental procedures are considerably less painful or even pain-free.
  • Fear of injections or fear the injection won’t work. Many people are terrified of needles, especially when inserted into their mouth. Beyond this fear, others fear that the anesthesia hasn’t yet taken effect or wasn’t a large enough dose to eliminate any pain before the dental procedure begins.
  • Fear of anesthetic side effects. Some people fear the potential side effects of anesthesia such as dizziness, feeling faint, or nausea. Others don’t like the numbness or “fat lip” associated with local anesthetics.
  • Feelings of helplessness and loss of control. It’s common for people to feel these emotions considering the situation — sitting in a dental chair with your mouth wide open, unable to see what’s going on.
  • Embarrassment and loss of personal space. Many people feel uncomfortable about the physical closeness of the dentist or hygienist to their face. Others may feel self-conscious about the appearance of their teeth or possible mouth odors.

If you suffer from any of these anxieties, the best thing you can do is talk about your fears with Dr Brogdon. He can discuss ways to make you feel less stressed and more comfortable.  Ask him to explain all he is doing, when he is doing it.  Knowing what to expect can help you relax. If you have any pain or just need to catch your breath, you might raise your hand or give him some signal to stop what he’s doing.

Dental Anxiety doesn’t have to keep you from having the best smile possible.  We are here to help.  Give us a call and set up that appointment.  Don’t be one of those 20%.

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February Heart Month

Since February is known as Heart Month is there a relationship between your oral health and your heart health?

Heart Disease is defined as cardiovascular disease, and occurs when blood vessels either narrow or become completely blocked, a condition that can lead to a heart attack, stroke or chest pain.  So what does this have to do with your Oral Health?

Recent studies show that if you have gum disease in a moderate or advanced stage, you’re at greater risk for heart disease than someone with healthy gums.

According to colgate.com, patients with chronic gum conditions such as gingivitis or advanced periodontal disease have the highest risk for heart disease caused by poor oral health, particularly if it remains undiagnosed and unmanaged. The bacteria that are associated with gum infection are in the mouth and can enter the blood stream, where they attach to the blood vessels and increase your risk to cardiovascular disease. 

So what should you do? Regular dental exams and good oral hygiene are two ways to protect yourself against developing gum disease. Visit our office at Brogdon Dental for regular professional teeth cleanings.  We want to keep your heart and your smile healthy as well as beautiful!

Wine – Good for your Breath?

Recent studies have shown that drinking wine may protect teeth by destroying bacteria that cause cavities, halitosis (bad breath) and periodontitis. According to DailyMail.com  Studies suggests antioxidants in wine significantly prevent bacteria that cause plaque, cavities and periodontal disease from sticking to gums.

But what kind of wine is best?   Research shows that antioxidants in red wine are more effective against plaque-causing bacteria that sticks to gum tissue, and when the bacteria is destroyed, your breath will reflect it.  Tests revealed two red wine ingredients – caffeic acid and p-coumaric acid – stopped tooth destroying bacteria from contaminating the mouth. Also red wine contains polyphenols, which can also help protect against heart disease and cancer.

Over-drinking though doesn’t have the same healthy benefits.  You should limited your consumption to one to two glasses of wine per day since too much wine can cause damage to the enamel on your teeth.

So Cheers! And remember to call Brogdon Dental for your next dental appointment.

 

wine

 

Why Regular Dental Checkups are Essential

It’s important to schedule regular dental checkups. The ADA recommends that you see your dentist every six months.  During this time the dentist (or dental hygienist) will probably evaluate the health of your gums, perform a head and neck examination and examine your mouth for any signs of oral cancer, diabetes or vitamin deficiencies.

Don’t be surprises if your dentist checks for plaque and tartar build up.  One of the reasons we have you come so often is that plaque and tartar can build up quickly if good oral hygiene is not practiced at home. This plaque can lead to gum disease.

Here is a list of some of the things the dentist will look for during your examination:

  • Examine your gums
  • Will look for signs of gum disease.
  • Check for loose teeth
  • Examine your tongue
  • Check your bite
  • Look for visual evidence of tooth decay
  • Check for broken teeth
  • Check for damaged fillings
  • Look for changes in the gums covering teeth
  • Evaluate your dental appliances
  • Check the contact between your teeth
  • Take X-rays

The trip to the dentist doesn’t have to be a bad experience.  We at Brogdon Dental want to make sure you have as enjoyable experience as possible.  Call us today to schedule your Checkup. Hopefully you will see how essential it can be.

Why Dental Cleanings are Essential

Do you ever wonder why your dentist recommends you come back to see them every six months? Not only to we enjoy seeing you, but regular dental visits are essential for the maintenance of healthy teeth and gums.  It’s also up to you to keep your teeth and gums clean and healthy between those visits. Plaque and tartar can build up in a very short time if good oral hygiene is not practiced. If not treated, plaque can lead to gum disease.

teethbrushing

After your dental exam we will perform a dental cleaning which consist of:

  • Checking the cleanliness of your teeth and gums
  • Removing any plaque and tartar
  • Polishing your teeth
  • Flossing between your teeth
  • Reviewing recommended brushing and flossing techniques

Once we are finished with your cleaning, we’ll tell you more about the health of your teeth and gums and make any recommendations we feel is warranted.  Remember, by seeing our staff at Brogdon Dental on a routine basis (at least every 6 months) and following our recommendations of good, daily oral hygiene practices, you can be sure that you will keep your teeth and gums healthy. And isn’t that what it’s all about?

 

 

 

 

Toothbrush, Toothpaste, Floss – and a Fork 12

This is the last in our series on food and your teeth.  Our subject today is Wasabi. That may seem like a odd food, but Wasabi, or Japanese horseradish, is a hot ingredient used in relation with Oriental cooking. This spicy condiment is known to safeguard healthy teeth by fighting bacteria that cause cavities and gum abscesses.

Wasabi root also helps reduce Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori), a bacteria that leads to stomach ulcers, unpleasant burping and bad breath, according to a 2004 study at Juntendo University School of Medicine in Tokyo. 

So the next time you order sushi, don’t forget the Wasabi.  It’s good for your stomach as well as your teeth.

wasabi

April Oral Cancer Awareness Month

Since over 45,000 people will be diagnosed with oral or throat cancer this year, we urge you to see us if you haven’t had a dental exam in a while.  When cancer is detected and treated early, treatment-related health problems can be reduced.

Regular oral cancer examinations can help detect oral cancer in its early stages. Dental visits can improve the chances that any suspicious changes in your oral health will be caught early, at a time when cancer can be treated more easily.

According to the American Dental Association here is a list of signs and symptoms you should be aware of in relation to your oral health, especially if they last more than two weeks:

  • a sore or irritation that doesn’t go away
  • red or white patches
  • pain, tenderness or numbness in mouth or lips
  • a lump, thickening, rough spot, crust or small eroded area
  • difficulty chewing, swallowing, speaking, or moving your jaw or tongue
  • a change in the way your teeth fit together when you close your mouth

If you notice any of these changes, please call our office immediately to set up an appointment.  Don’t ignore any suspicious lumps or sores that last more than two weeks. Prompt examination could make a difference.