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Why to look for the ADA Seal of Acceptance

When buying dental products, it’s a good idea to look out for the American Dental Association (ADA) Seal of Acceptance. The first Seal of Acceptance was awarded in 1931 and it’s regarded as an important symbol of a dental product’s safety and effectiveness. Although the Seal program is strictly voluntary, approximately 100 companies participate in it and they commit significant resources to testing their products in clinical and laboratory conditions. More than 300 consumer dental products carry the Seal of Acceptance. These include toothpaste, dental floss, manual and electric toothbrushes, mouth rinse and chewing gum. You can get more information about the seal and how it is awarded for specific products at http://www.ada.org/ada/seal/ This site also contains links to the most current lists of accepted consumer products.

Action steps to prevent gum disease

Gum disease is a major cause of tooth loss in adults but it can be prevented or reversed if you take the right steps. It’s caused by plaque – a sticky film of bacteria that constantly forms on the teeth. These bacteria create toxins that can damage the gums. However, you can help avoid gum disease by caring properly for your teeth and having regular dental checkups. These are some steps you can take to keep your teeth and gums healthy: Brush your teeth well twice a day: This removes the film of bacteria from the teeth. Be sure to use a soft-bristled toothbrush that is in good condition. Toothpastes and mouth rinses containing fluoride strengthen the teeth and help prevent decay. Clean between your teeth every day: You need to remove the bacteria and food particles that a toothbrush can’t reach so you should clean between your teeth with floss or interdental cleaners every day. Your dentist will show you how to do this properly without injuring your gums. Even if you already have earl…

How older adults can handle dry mouth and taste problems

Reduced saliva flow that results in a dry mouth is a common problem among older adults. It is caused by certain medical disorders and is often a side effect of medications such as antihistamines, decongestants, pain killers and diuretics. Some of the common problems associated with dry mouth include:
– Constant sore throat
– Burning sensation
– Problems speaking
– Difficulty swallowing
– Hoarseness or dry nasal passages Left untreated, dry mouth can damage your teeth. Without adequate saliva to lubricate your mouth, wash away food, and neutralize the acids produced by plaque, extensive cavities can form. Your dentist can recommend various methods to restore moisture. For example, sugar-free candy or gum stimulates saliva flow, and moisture can be replaced by using artificial saliva and oral rinses. Another issue that can affect older adults is a loss of appetite due to a change in your sense of taste. Besides an age-related decrease in the sense of taste and smell, certain diseases, medic…

Solving the problem of bad breath

Bad breath – which is also known as halitosis – is a worrying problem that can also be embarrassing. But there’s no need to put up with it. If you suffer from bad breath, your dentist will be able to suggest a range of solutions. Your dentist will be able to spot problems such as gum disease, dry mouth or other disorders. That’s why it’s important to maintain good oral hygiene, schedule regular visits to the dentist and have professional cleaning. Make sure you brush your teeth twice a day and clean between your teeth each day using floss or interdental cleaners. Don’t forget to brush your tongue, too! If your dental check up shows that your mouth is healthy, your dentist may refer you to your family physician as sometimes bad breath can be a sign of other health problems. If the odor is due to periodontal (gum) disease, sometimes professional periodontal cleaning is needed to remove the bacteria and plaque that accumulate. And your dentist may recommend a special antimicrobial mouth…

How medication and anesthesia can help make your visit to the dentist easier

Your dentist will do everything possible to make your visit as relaxed and comfortable as possible. Depending on the treatment you are receiving, there are several medications available to help. Some drugs control pain, some help you relax and others put you into a deep sleep during dental treatment. The best approach will depend on the type of procedure being undertaken, your overall health – including any history of allergies – and the degree of anxiety you feel. Some of the options your dentist might discuss include: Analgesics: These are the most commonly used drugs for relief of toothache or pain following dental treatment. They includes aspirin, acetaminophen and anti-inflammatory drugs such as Ibuprofen. There is a separate category of ‘narcotic analgesics’ – such as those containing codeine – which are used for more severe pain. Local anesthesia: Topical anesthetics are applied to mouth tissues with a swab to prevent pain on the surface level. They may also be used to soothe …

Taking care of your teeth and gums during pregnancy

Your oral health is an important part of your overall health and this is never more true than during pregnancy. Good oral health habits not only help prevent oral problems during pregnancy, they also help the health of your unborn child. What you eat during your pregnancy affects the development of your unborn child – including teeth. Eating a balanced diet is necessary to provide the correct amounts of nutrients to nourish both you and your child. Your baby’s teeth begin to develop between the third and sixth month of pregnancy, so it is important that you receive sufficient nutrients – especially calcium, protein, phosphorous, and vitamins A, C, and D. There is a common myth that calcium is lost from the mother’s teeth during pregnancy. In fact, the calcium your baby needs is provided by your diet, not by your teeth. If your diet does not provide enough calcium, your body will provide this mineral from stores in your bones. If you have an adequate intake of dairy products – the mai…

Why a dental abscess should be treated quickly

If you have any kind of swelling in your gum, it almost certainly indicates a serious infection that should be treated urgently. Dental abscesses result from a bacterial infection in the teeth or gums. For example, it may come from an untreated cavity. Cavities result when some of the bacteria in our mouths mix with sugars and starches in our diet to produce acid. This acid attacks the hard enamel coating of our teeth and, as the cavity gets deeper, it eventually infects the nerve and blood supply of the tooth. In some cases, a dental abscess is caused by an infection of the gum. Bone loss from gum disease can create a pocket between the tooth, gum and bone. When bacteria and other debris get into this pocket, an abscess can form. The treatment for an abscess depends on how severe the infection is. If the abscess has been caused by decay, root canal treatment may be needed or the tooth may even have to be removed. If the abscess has been caused by the gum, the gum will need deep clea…