March – National Nutrition Month

We know that in order to have proper nutrition, we need to eat a well balanced diet.  If you don’t give your body the nutrients it needs, your health as well as your mouth, may suffer. The first step in the digestion process begins with your mouth, teeth and gums.  Properly chewing your food goes a long way in making sure you get what you need.  A poor diet can lead to tooth decay and gum disease.  High carbs and sugary foods contribute to the production of plaque which will cause cavities.

Here are a few useful tips courtesy of MouthHealthy.org, the ADA’s consumer website:

  • Follow the recommended nutritional guidelines. Your individual nutrition and calorie needs depend on your age, gender, level of physical activity and other health factors. However, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, a balanced and healthy diet should include fruits and vegetables; grains, especially whole grains such as oatmeal, brown rice and whole wheat bread; low-fat or fat-free dairy foods; and lean protein choices.
  • Stay away from foods that harm your dental health. Empty calorie foods such as candy, sweets and snack foods are a cause for dental concern, not only because they offer no nutritional value, but because the amount and type of sugar that they contain can adhere to teeth. The bacteria in your mouth feed off these sugars, releasing acids, which can lead to tooth decay. In addition, sugar-containing drinks — soda, lemonade, juice and sweetened coffee or tea — are particularly harmful because sipping them causes a constant sugar bath over teeth, which promotes tooth decay.
  • Eat foods that benefit dental health. Cheese, milk, plain yogurt, calcium-fortified tofu, leafy greens and almonds are foods that may benefit tooth health thanks to their high amounts of calcium and other nutrients they provide. Protein-rich foods like meat, poultry, fish, milk and eggs are good sources of phosphorus, which along with calcium, plays a critical role in dental health by protecting and rebuilding tooth enamel. In addition, fruits and vegetables are high in water and fiber, which balance the sugars they contain and help to clean the teeth.

If you have any questions concerning your dental health and the part good nutrition plays, give us a call at Brogdon Dental 423-870-5698. We welcome the opportunity to discuss your dental needs.

Is Sugar Scary? It can be…

Halloween is here and that means your kids will probably be eating a lot of sweets, especially candy. So how can you keep their teeth from suffering after too much sugar?

One way is pretty simple. Brush often. Everyone knows that brushing your teeth can help you prevent cavities, but it can also help if you have eaten too much sugar. You also need to change your toothbrush out often. According to colgate.com, Toothbrushes with triple-action bristles and diamond-shaped heads are designed to be better at cleaning hard-to-reach nooks and crannies.  And those hard-to-reach places are where your sugars will reside.

Use mouthwash, especially those that contain fluoride. If you don’t have mouthwash, swishing your mouth out with plain water will help.

Chewing sugar-free gum after eating sweets helps by creating saliva which will remove sugar that coats your teeth. The key is to prevent the mouth from remaining coated in the acid-forming sugars and other carbohydrates found in sweets after eating.

Use these tips to help your kids (and yourself) from developing cavities from too much sugars.  And call our office at Brogdon Dental to make your appointment for cleaning. Now is the time to take control of your and your children’s dental health.

Dehydration and Oral Health

Although summer may be coming to a close, temperatures continue to soar in to the upper 90’s. The end of summer has many students heading back to school.  With the beginning of the new school year brings the start of high school athletics. Many kids will participate in practices, especially football, in the late afternoon heat after classes. The need to maintain adequate hydration is essential, especially considering the many problems it can cause. Failure to drink enough fluids before physical activity can result in serious issues.

One of the first warning signs of dehydration is dry mouth.  You may find that you have trouble swallowing, and others may notice that you have bad breath, which is one of the problems associated with a dry mouth.  If your mouth is not producing enough saliva it can become an breeding ground for bacteria. This bacteria causes infections that may lead to cavities and gingivitis.

We need sufficient saliva in our mouths to wash away food debris and reduce plaque, which is why severe tooth decay and gum disease can occur if dry mouth is left untreated. According to the Oral Cancer Foundation, 30 percent of all tooth decay in older adults is caused by dry mouth. (www.toothwisdom.org)

Besides drinking plenty of water and brushing and flossing daily; chewing sugar free gum or sucking on sugar free mints can help fight dry mouth since they stimulates saliva production. Products that contain xylitol (a sugar substitute) can actually help prevent cavities.

As the temperatures still continue to rise, keep a check on your hydration. If you feel thirsty, you are already dehydrated. Experts recommend at least a gallon (eight 8-ounce glasses) of water per day. Dehydration effects every part of your body including your oral health. Keep drinking water.

Trick or Treat for your Kids Teeth

Can Halloween treats be tricks for your kids teeth? What are the best treats for your kids to indulge in this year? the worse?  Here is a list of some of the good and bad treats for your kids.

Good Treats:

  • frozen fruit bars with chunks of real fruit
  • sugar-free gum
  • light popcorn
  • pretzels

Not too Scary:

  • chocolate without sticky fillings
  • peanut butter cups
  • sugar-free lollipops

Bad Tricks:

  • taffy
  • gummy bears
  • caramel
  • sour candies
  • jawbreakers

While all candies are not bad for your teeth, eating too much of anything, even good things, is not recommended. Remember, anything that can get stuck in your teeth is probably not good for your teeth. And don’t forget to brush and floss. At Brogdon Dental, we want to help your kids keep their boo-tiful smiles!

Smile – it’s back to school time

With a new school year beginning many parents think about new clothes, haircuts or books for their kids, but many forget about their child’s smile. Studies show that one of the first things people notice about you is your smile, and what better way to increase your child’s positive self esteem, than by making sure they have a great smile.

According to knowyourteeth.com:

Seeing a dentist twice a year during the school-age years is vital because this is a time of great change in the mouth, with kids losing baby teeth and getting in their permanent teeth. Tooth decay is still the most common chronic childhood disease and, left untreated, it can impair a child’s ability to eat, speak, sleep and learn. However, studies show more than 60 percent of school-age children do not see a dentist annually.

Start now establishing good dental habits by teaching your children to brush at least twice a day. And don’t forget to floss.  Also make sure you use a toothpaste that contains fluoride and a soft-bristled toothbrush. The sooner you make these habits a priority, the sooner your child will benefit.

Contact our office – Brogdon Dental at 423-870-5698 – to set up your child’a appointment.

 

The Importance of Dental Care for Teens

As a teen, you know that your smile is one of the first things people notice about you. That’s why it’s important that you take care of it. Cavities can happen at any age. If you drink sugary sodas, juice or energy drinks you risk gum disease and tooth decay. Take care of your teeth by brushing twice a day for two minutes and flossing daily.

According to Mouthhealthy.org, here is the bottom line for smiles that are healthy on the inside and out:

  • Always brush your teeth twice a day with fluoride toothpaste for two minutes
  • Floss between your teeth daily
  • Avoid sugary and starchy snacks
  • Wear a mouthguard when you’re active
  • Don’t smoke.
  • Don’t pierce your lips or any part of your mouth
  • See your dentist. Regular dental visits will help set you up to be Mouth Healthy for Life.

With the Prom coming up for many teens, your smile will play an important part of your pictures.  Make sure your teeth are healthy and bright by following the above suggestions.