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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Our Dental Hygienist

A Dental Hygienist is an important part of any dental team.  They provide full oral health care, focusing on the prevention and treatment of oral disease and work closely with the Dentist.

Some of the duties they perform include:

  • Patient screening and intake procedures
  • Taking and developing x-rays of your teeth
  • Basic cleaning of your teeth
  • Applying sealants, fluorides, or other substances for preventing tooth decay
  • Assisting with procedures in cosmetic dentistry
  • Helping educate patients on proper oral care

One of the most important things to look at when choosing a Dental Practice is how long the Hygienist have been with the office. At Brogdon Dental our hygienist have been with us for many years.  We will spotlight some of them in future blogs.

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

 

The Purpose of Mouthwash

While it should not take the place of daily brushing and flossing, mouthwash is good to add to your daily oral hygiene routine.  The benefit of using a mouthwash is that it can reach areas not easily accessed by a toothbrush.

Basically there are two types of mouthwash: cosmetic and therapeutic.  Cosmetic mouthwash may temporarily control bad breath and leave behind a pleasant taste. If it doesn’t contain any ingredients that can kill bacteria, it would be considered cosmetic. Therapeutic mouthwashes on the other hand, contain ingredients that control or reduce conditions like bad breath, gingivitis, plaque, and tooth decay.

When choosing a mouthwash, be sure to look for the ADA Seal of  Approval.  Mouthwashes offer additional benefits such as reducing the risk of bad breath, cavities, or gum disease; or for relief of dry mouth or pain from oral sores

Remember, children younger than the age of 6 should not use mouthwash because of the risk of swallowing.

So use your mouthwash, either before or after brushing. Your teeth, mouth and gums will feel better for it.

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?

 

 

 

 

History of the Toothbrush

Have you ever wondered where the toothbrush came from that you have in your bathroom medicine cabinet?  According to the Library of Congress, the toothbrush that we use today was not invented until 1938. However, there are many other early forms of toothbrushes that have been around since 3000 BC. Ancient Egyptians, Greeks and Romans used what was referred to as a “chew stick” which was a thin stick with a frayed end.  The teeth were “cleaned” by chewing on the frayed end.

Bristle toothbrushes were invented in China in 1498. These brushes were made with hairs taken from the backs of hog’s necks and attached to bone or bamboo handles.

In 1938, Dupont de Nemours introduced the first nylon toothbrush called Doctor West’s Miracle Toothbrush.  Compared to using a boar bristle toothbrush, this was probably looked on as a miracle! Now we have various toothbrush shapes, sizes, textures and handle styles to choose from.

Toothbrush

Here are some other interesting facts about toothbrushes:

  • The first mass-produced toothbrush was made by William Addis of Clerkenwald, England, around 1780.
  • The first American to patent a toothbrush was H.N. Wadsworth, on November 7, 1857.
  • Mass production of toothbrushes began in America around 1885.
  • One of the first electric toothbrushes to hit the American market was in 1960. It was marketed by the Squibb company under the name of Broxodent.
  • On average, each person in the U.S. purchases three toothbrushes every 2 years although the ADA recommends that toothbrushes be changed every 3 to 4 months.
(courtesy of The Library of Congress)