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Infant Teeth – 6 Tips on Baby Tooth Care

by on October 30, 2017 | Posted in Blog

So your baby begins acting cranky, and one morning you notice a tooth poking out of their little gums. Finally! This explains why they were acting this way. Now comes the challenge – how do you take care of these new infant teeth? How do you prevent tooth decay? Here are 6 tips on how to take care of your baby’s teeth.

1. Start Early

You don’t have to wait until the first tooth pops out. You should start getting your baby used to having their mouths cleaned on a regular basis. You can do this by using a damp cloth and wiping your baby’s gums and gently massaging them. There are also contraptions you can buy that look like thimbles you put over your finger. Both ways are just as effective.

2. Take Care of Infant Teeth Right Away

Baby teeth are just as important as adult teeth. They are place holders until the permanent teeth come in and if these place holders are taken out, it can negatively affect the permanent dentition. Once you notice that your baby has sprouted some pearly whites, please take care of them right away. This means brushing them on a regular basis, twice per day. You don’t need toothpaste, however if you want it, make sure it’s not fluoridated.

3. Avoid Cavities

Doing dental work on small children is no easy task. Along with brushing your child’s teeth regularly, it is important that you do not put your baby to bed with a bottle of milk. Milk has sugar, and when the milk pools in your child’s mouth, it will start the decay the teeth. It will begin as discolouration, followed by pitting and possible discomfort for the child. Also, limiting sweet juices helps.

4. Give Water After Meals

Just like adults, when we have something sugary or acidic – it’s a very good idea to have some water to wash away and food debris and neutralize the mouth. When a child is little, it is easy to help them clean their mouth after every meal. Simply offer water, and that will take away most food particles that can cause tooth decay

5. Start with Toothpaste at Age 2

Around age 2 is when you may need to make brushing more fun. This is when the child can get picky around brushing their teeth. However, flavoured non-fluoridated toothpaste can help them make the process a little bit more fun. Do not use fluoridated toothpaste until at least age 3 – this is when the child can spit out the toothpaste. However, sometimes that can be later on, around age 4 or 5.

6. Schedule a Check-Up

You can have your child become more comfortable in a dental chair by taking them to your appointments and letting them “ride in the chair”. They can see that the dentist isn’t a scary place. Of course try not to use phrases like “don’t be afraid” as that may give them a reason to be afraid. Most dentists like to see children around their 3rd birthday provided there is good home care.

 

If you have any questions about how to care for your child’s teeth, please call our office or ask your Dental Hygienist at the next visit!

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You work so hard to keep your teeth and gums healthy. You floss (almost) everyday and brush your teeth twice a day. Did you ever think that some of the foods that you eat affect the health of your teeth? You will be surprised when you read the list of some of the worst food for your teeth.

The Worst Food for Your Teeth

  1. Citrus Fruit – This food in general has many great health benefits, but these benefits do not include being good for your teeth. Foods like lemons, grapefruits or oranges contain a lot of acid which can erode tooth enamel over time.
  2. Chewy Candy – The general rule is that the sticker it is, the worse it is. These types of candy stick to and in between your teeth allowing bacteria to have a picnic in your mouth. The sugar is also converted into acid which affects your tooth enamel which can result in cavities.
  3. Pickles – The acid used to pickle the cucumbers is what is makes pickles one of the worst foods for your teeth. Just like citrus fruit, the acid from the pickles can erode tooth enamel over time.
  4. Soda – OK, this one may not surprise you. Most people know that any sugary drink can cause cavities, however what you may not know is that most sodas are also acidic. At times the acid in the drinks can be more harmful than the sugar that is in the soda.
  5. Wine – Not only are wines acidic, but they also enhance the dreaded discolouration of your teeth. It’s no secret that red wine leaves your teeth stained, but what you may not know is that the wine tannins tend to dry your mouth out which worsens the stains.
  6. Crackers – The carbohydrates in crackers quickly turn into sugar in the mouth providing food to the infamous bacteria living in your mouth. On top of that, crackers are mushy when eaten and can get easily lodged in between teeth.
  7. Coffee – This one may disappoint many of you. Coffee is a huge stain causing food, even worse than tobacco.
  8. Tea – Thought you were out of the woods because your drink tea? Not so fast! Black tea is actually worse than coffee. Additionally it contains tannins (like red wine), which can enhance tooth stains.

Now that you know which foods are the worst for your teeth, you can be more conscious when making the decision to eat/drink them. Keep in mind that any of the above items, in moderation, will not cause extensive tooth damage. However, doing things like chewing sugar-free gum and drinking lots of water can counteract the effects of the worst foods for your teeth.

To find out what foods are beneficial to your teeth, visit the Ontario Dental Association’s website.

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Invisible Braces | Invisalign Clear Aligners

by on September 21, 2017 | Posted in Blog

Everything You Need To Know About Invisible Braces!

Those straight teeth you’ve been dreaming of may no longer require a set of bulky metal braces. With Invisalign invisible braces, you can get a Hollywood smile without the typical hassle of unattractive wire and bracket braces. Barely visible, Invisalign will enhance self-esteem and confidence all while aligning your teeth!

If you want to enhance your smile, but are worried about the appearance and inconvenience of regular braces, then Invisalign might be right for you!

Here’s everything you need to know about invisible braces:

How is Invisalign/invisible braces different from regular metal braces?

First and foremost, Invisalign is invisible! That means you don’t have to worry about feeling self-conscious about your smile.  Getting braces as an adult can seem daunting, but with Invisalign you won’t need to worry about tackling social situations with your braces because your friends won’t even know you’re wearing any.

Secondly, unlike regular braces where you need to avoid eating any sticky or tough foods that will damage your appliance, Invisalign aligners are removable! When you want to enjoy a special treat or bite into your favourite foods you can remove your aligners just like that. But that’s not even the best part…

With Invisalign, you can see virtual results before your treatment even begins. That’s right! You’ll know exactly how your smile will turn out if you follow each step in your Invisalign treatment.

How does it work?

Invisalign uses a series of lab-fabricated aligners to straighten your teeth over a fixed period of time.  The first step in your Invisalign treatment is a consultation with your dentist. He or she will need to determine whether or not Invisalign is right for your mouth. From there, your dentist will take impressions to build your custom-fit aligners.

Over the course of your treatment, you will be supplied with a series of aligners. Each aligner will be slightly different from the last in order to slowly adjust the position of your teeth in a way that is pre-mapped by your dentist. Your dentist will be able to show you the slight changes that are expected for your teeth at each stage of the process before they even happen.

In order to complete your Invisalign treatment successfully, aligners must be worn at least 20 hours a day and should only be removed for eating, brushing and flossing.

How much does it cost?

The cost of Invisalign invisible braces is often similar to the cost of regular metal braces though with all the perks Invisalign offers, the choice should be a no-brainer. Invisalign treatment is faster, innovative and virtually invisible!

Invisalign offers treatment no other brands of clear aligners are capable of. With proprietary, multilayer SmartTrack® material, proven to fit better and more comfortably, Invisalign is the most advanced clear aligner system in the world.

The cost of Invisalign can range anywhere from $3,000 to $8,000 CAD. This is determined by the condition of your teeth and gums, the length of your treatment and your orthodontic insurance coverage.

For a better idea of how much you can expect to spend on Invisalign, check out the Invisalign Cost Calculator.

What happens after my treatment?

Once your Invisalign treatment is complete you can say goodbye to your invisible braces aligners for good!

In order to prevent your teeth from shifting back to their natural position, we recommend wearing a retainer. There are two different retainers we offer our patients. The first is a lingual wire retainer. The lingual wire retainer is permanent and is bonded to the back of the teeth. It cannot be removed and therefore you do not need to worry about remembering to put the retainer in or take it out. With a lingual wire retainer regular flossing is crucial as the wire can collect food, tartar and plaque.

The second form of retainer is a Vivera® retainer. A Vivera® retainer is made by the makers of Invisalign using the same technology. These retainers are custom-made and are to be worn nightly. Forgetting to wear your Vivera® retainer will cause your teeth to shift.

Contact us to schedule your Invisalign consultation!

If you have any questions about Invisalign invisible braces or if you’d like to schedule an appointment for a consultation, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us. We’d love to hear from you!

Call 905-545-4833 or email us at info@centurystonedental.com to get started today!

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Oral Health and Aging: 6 Things to Lookout For

by on September 14, 2017 | Posted in Blog

As you age, it becomes increasingly important that you take care of yourself. With age, your body experiences changes from wrinkles to grey hair. But did you know that the changes you experience as you become older can have all sorts of effects on oral health too?

Turns out, oral health and aging go hand in hand. As you age, the wear and tear on your smile can become more prominent if you are not actively taking steps to keep your teeth and gums in check. Brushing your teeth at least twice a day and flossing regularly will work wonders for your gums. But on the contrary, neglecting your oral care routine will cause all kinds of health problems that can’t be fixed with a simple trip to the dentist.

If you are an adult 65 years of age or older, you should be paying extra attention to your oral health. Be on the lookout for these 6 oral health concerns:

 

6 Oral Health Concerns to Lookout for as You Age

 

  1. Discolouration

Most often, tooth darkening occurs as a natural effect of aging. With age, the outer hard substance covering your teeth, called enamel, wears away to expose the dentin hiding beneath it. Dentin is darker in colour and, as enamel wears away, can make teeth appear gray or yellow rather than white.

The best way to prevent this from happening to you is to try your best to protect your enamel by avoiding acidic beverages, rinsing your mouth regularly and minimizing symptoms of GERD or acid reflux.

 

  1. Dry Mouth

Dry mouth, or Xerostomia, is more prevalent in the aging population. Though many believe dry mouth is a normal part of aging – it is not. Experts claim the main reason that dry mouth is more prevalent in those 65 and older is because this age group consumes more medications compared with the rest of the population, and many of these medications cause Xerostomia.

Ultimately, dry mouth happens when you are not producing enough saliva to keep your mouth wet. This can cause a number of health related problems when it comes to teeth and gums as saliva contains minerals like calcium and phosphate that protect the teeth’s enamel.

If you are experiencing dry mouth, try rinsing your mouth with water more frequently and/or holding water in your mouth for ten seconds before swallowing to help increase saliva flow. If you believe your symptoms of dry mouth are caused by a medication, talk to your doctor about altering your dosage or prescribing an alternate medication.

 

  1. Cavities

As you age, the nerves in your teeth become smaller, making you less sensitive to cavities and other oral health concerns. If you are 65 years of age or older, you should continue to visit your dentist regularly to be certain your teeth you are cavity free.

It’s also vital that you have a good toothbrush and that you USE IT to brush your teeth twice a day… minimum!

In some of our older patients, we have noticed that muscle aches and pains have caused them to abandon their oral care routine all together.   That said, with age comes osteoporosis, arthritis and other muscle – or movement – related health issues that can make brushing challenging. If you have a health concern that makes brushing your teeth a challenge, consider an electric toothbrush to simplify the process and ensure you’re still making the most of your oral hygiene routine.

 

  1. Tooth Loss

Many people assume that losing teeth is a natural part of the aging process… but not so fast! You may be surprised to learn that “adult teeth” don’t die.  If you lose one of your permanent teeth, it’s likely due to tooth decay or trauma.  So when you require an implant, bridge, or even dentures to replace those missing teeth, you’re more than likely the one to blame. Tooth loss is not a sign of aging, but rather a sign that you’re neglecting to take proper care of your teeth!

If properly taken care of, your teeth can last a lifetime. Unfortunately with age, many people neglect their oral care routine and give up on diet and good health practices. I suppose that old dental quote holds true: “You don’t have to clean all your teeth every day – just the ones you want to keep.”

 

  1. Oral Cancer

Cancer in the mouth, throat and tongue, etc., can be life threatening if not diagnosed and treated early. According to the Canadian Cancer Society, an estimated 4,700 Canadians will be diagnosed with oral cancer by the end of 2017. Generally, the earlier oral cancer is diagnosed and treated, the better the outcome.

As you age, it’s critical that you continue to attend your regularly scheduled check-ups with your dentist. Your dentist can play an important role in the early detection of oral cancer as a dentist may notice subtle changes in the mouth that a patient might miss. In addition, an oral cancer screening will be performed by your dentist during your exam. This screening is fast and painless – and ultimately, could save your life.

If you have any of the following symptoms that persist for more than two weeks, be sure to see your dentist or your physician sooner rather than later:

  • A sore, irritation, lump, or thick patch in the mouth, lip, or throat
  • A feeling that something is caught in the throat
  • Tongue pain or numbness
  • Jaw pain or stiffness
  • Difficult or painful swallowing
  • Difficult or painful chewing
  • Swelling of the jaw that causes dentures to fit poorly or become uncomfortable
  • Pain in one ear without hearing loss
Note: Often these symptoms do not mean cancer, but it’s important to get them checked out if they persist!

 

  1. Periodontal (Gum) Disease

Commonly, older adults who neglect their regular dental visits find themselves suffering from gum, or periodontal disease. Periodontal disease is caused by bacteria in plaque that forms on the teeth. This plaque needs to be removed regularly or it can irritate the gums, causing them to become red, swollen, and maybe even bleed. If left untreated, this infection can spread and destroy the structures that support your teeth in your jaw bone.

The good news is that with regular dental visits gum disease can be treated or prevented entirely.

Signs of gum disease can include:

  • Gums bleeding when you brush your teeth
  • Gums that recede from your teeth
  • Bad Breathe
  • Loose teeth
  • Sensitive teeth
  • Tender, swollen gums

 

Bottom Line: There is a strong relationship between oral health and aging. If you let your age get in the way of a proper oral health care routine, you run the risk of effecting your physical health as a whole.

If you are 65 years of age or older and haven’t visited the dentist in the past 6 to 9 months, its time you get back on track!

Call us today at (905)-545-4833 to book your next appointment.

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You’ve probably heard your dentist talk about “tooth enamel” at some point during your last visit. And though the topic comes up relatively often at our dental practice, we have come to notice that not all patients know what we’re talking about when we explain the importance of protecting tooth enamel!

Are you ever confused when your dentist talks about tooth enamel? Do you know what it is? How important it is? How you can protect it?

To help our patients understand how to effectively protect their teeth from decay, we’ve put together a beginner’s guide to all things tooth enamel!

What is tooth enamel?

Tooth enamel is the hard outer surface of your teeth that protects your teeth from decay.  It is made up mostly of minerals, primarily hydroxyapatite, and its colour can vary from a light yellow to a grayish white.

 

What is tooth enamel made of

 

Tooth enamel is considered the hardest substance in your body and is even stronger than bone!


Why is it important to protect tooth enamel?

Despite its strength, everyday foods can put enamel at risk and believe it or not, we can’t regrow tooth enamel. Your body can help strengthen the enamel that you have, but it can’t remake it once it’s gone! That’s why it’s important to protect the tooth enamel that you have.

If your teeth start losing their outer shell, you might notice:

  • Sensitivity to hot, cold, or sweet foods or drinks
  • Smooth, shiny surfaces on the teeth, a sign of mineral loss
  • Cupping, or dents, that show up where you bit or chew
  • Rough or uneven edges on the teeth, which can crack or chip when they lose their enamel
  • Yellow teeth

Luckily, there are natural ways you can protect your tooth enamel to ensure your teeth and gums stay healthy for life!

 

How to protect tooth enamel naturally:

 

  1. Watch out for dry mouth

    Xerostomia, or chronic dry mouth, is a medical condition that can pose problems for your mouth as a whole, and your tooth enamel specifically.  Your saliva contains minerals like calcium and phosphate, that maintain and protect your teeth’s enamel. However, when you have dry mouth, your spit levels are low – making your mouth dry – and when your mouth has less saliva, your enamel and teeth are more vulnerable than when you have a mouthful of spit.

    To increase your mouth’s production of saliva, you need to chew!

    Chew your food more thoroughly while eating and lightly snack or chew gym between meals.

  2. Minimize acid reflux, GERD or heartburn

    If you have been diagnosed with acid reflux, GERD or heartburn, your dental health might be at risk. Gastroesophageal acid reflux disease, or GERD, can bring stomach acids back up from the stomach and into the mouth, damaging your teeth in the process.

    If you suffer from acid reflux, ensure you follow your doctor’s orders. Minimizing symptoms by eating non-triggering foods will keep stomach acid at bay and protect, not only your esophagus, but your teeth as well!

  3. Rinse your mouth often

    Rinse your mouth out with water after each meal. This will wash away any food debris in your mouth and help prevent cavities.

    Rinsing your mouth is particularly important after eating sugary or acidic foods that will destroy tooth enamel if they are left to sit on your teeth for too long.

  1. Chew sugar-free gum

    Chew sugar-free gum between, or after meals to stimulate the flow of saliva. Saliva washes acid off your teeth and protects your enamel all day long.

    Sugar-free gum does not have any sugar and its taste is added using sweeteners. Therefore, the gum does not cause tooth decay. Chewing gum will also help protect your teeth and gums between meals when you may not be able to brush with a toothbrush and a fluoride type toothpaste.

  2. Avoid citrus, fruit juices, alcoholic beverages

    Having an acid-rich diet can put your tooth enamel at risk of acid erosion. In fact, as few as four acidic instances throughout the day is all it takes to damage enamel.

    The foods that you drink and consume can cause the most damage. According to the National Institute of Health (NIH), soft drinks are the most frequent source of erosive acids, due to their high acidity and frequency of consumption. Other drinks like fruit juice, sports drinks and energy drinks can also damage your teeth through acidic erosion.

    Dairy is a fantastic tool in the fight against acid erosion. Dairy is not acidic, and does not harm tooth enamel. It also improves saliva production which naturally cleans teeth of debris and restores the mouth back to a healthy ph balance.

    ph scale acid erosion

    This ph scale can help you determine which of your favourite foods are damaging your enamel.

One of the best ways to protect your teeth’s enamel is to work with your dentist.

If you’re struggling to protect your teeth’s enamel, give us a call today at (905)-545-4833. Our dental team can help you detect erosion and offer tips on ways you can reduce it.


Sources:

http://www.personalcaredentistry.com/11-tips-to-help-protect-your-tooth-enamel/

http://www.webmd.com/oral-health/tooth-enamel-protection#2

https://www.listerine.com/tooth-sensitivity/protecting-enamel

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You could be damaging your teeth without even knowing it! Your bad habits might just be prompting cavities, oral infections and even costly dental repairs. Unfortunately, many people don’t even realize the seriousness of their bad habits until it’s too late.

Here are 5 bad dental habits that are harming your oral health:

 

Tooth Grinding and Jaw Clenching

Grinding your teeth or excessively clenching your jaw can pose a wide range of problems when it comes to your oral health.  This bad habit, also known as bruxism, can chip tooth enamel, cause severe facial or jaw pain, incite tension-type headaches and can even result in broken or fractured teeth that require crowns or replacements with dental implants. Most often, grinding teeth or jaw clenching is caused by stress or by sleep disordered breathing.

All too often, people who grind their teeth don’t even know they’re doing it as tooth grinding often happens while asleep!

So how can you know if you’re grinding your teeth? Some symptoms include:

  • Loose teeth
  • A sore, tired jaw
  • Neck aches, earaches and headaches
  • A clicking sound when you open and close your mouth

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it’s best you see your dentist as soon as possible. Your dentist will work with you to find ways to minimize your tooth grinding. This could include a bite adjustment or recommending a night guard made to fit over your teeth to help prevent damage caused by grinding your teeth or clenching your jaw while you sleep.
If you find yourself clenching your teeth during the day, this is a habit you can control! Make a conscious effort to keep your teeth slightly apart while your jaw is relaxed and/or practice meditation to alleviate stress.

 

Nail Biting

You already know nail biting is a bad nervous habit; it can cause severe damage to both you nails and your cuticles – but did you realize nail biting is even harmful to your teeth! Biting your nails can cause your teeth to shift out of place, become misshapen, and even weaken them over time.

The Academy of General Dentistry estimates that frequent nail biters may rack up $4,000 in additional dental bills over the course of their lifetime

To kick this bad habit, try using bitter-tasting nail polishes or chewing sugar-free gum to keep your teeth busy.

 

Thumb Sucking

Thumb sucking at a young age, particularly before children begin teething, is a natural habit and will not harm your child’s teeth. However, after the age of five or six, when permanent teeth begin to come in, thumb sucking can cause lasting changes to booth tooth and jaw structure.

Prolonged thumb sucking can cause crooked teeth, overcrowding, or a bite that doesn’t fit together properly.

If your child has permanent teeth and continues to suck his or her thumb, it’s time you find a way to put an end to this bad habit. If you child continues this habit after the age of five or six, make an appointment with your family dentist so he or she can explain the effects thumb sucking has on their oral health and the future appearance of their smile.

 

Neglecting to Floss

I’m sure you hear it from your dentist all the time, but it’s very important that you remember to floss! Flossing plays a vital role in dental health. While a toothbrush is efficient at cleaning the tops and outer surfaces of the teeth and gums, floss is designed specifically to clean the tight spaces between the teeth in areas that your toothbrush can’t reach.

The places where the gums and teeth meet are where flossing plays its major role. Tiny particles of food can get lodged here, and plaque in this area will harden and accrete over time to form tartar, a thick deposit that only the dentist can remove with a scraper. Tartar buildup can lead to gingivitis: red, swollen gums that are the first stage of gum disease. If left unchecked, the bacteria-laden tartar and plaque can spread even deeper below the gum line, causing periodontitis: severe gum disease characterized by severe inflammation and eventual tooth and bone loss [source].

Flossing at least three times a week will keep your gums strong and healthy!

 

Brushing Too Hard

Brushing your teeth for two minutes twice a day is one of the best habits you can get into… but watch out for too much of a good thing!

Brushing too hard, or with the wrong toothbrush won’t only irritate your gums – it can also damage your teeth! Brushing too vigorously can wear down tooth enamel, harm your gums, make your teeth sensitive to cold and can even cause cavities. So don’t go to town on your teeth! Many people believe that brushing harder is better – but that’s nowhere near the truth. Plaque is soft and loose so there’s no need to scrub. To fix this, replace the word “toothbrush” with “tooth massage”. When you are “brushing” your teeth, you should actually be “massaging” your teeth with your brush to work off all that clingy tartar.

Moreover, ensure you are brushing with a soft-bristle brush. Bristles should be able to bend easily to reach under the gum. Hard-bristle brushes can be dangerous as they can wear down the structure of your tooth.

 

Do you have any of these oral health harming habits? If you can change your ways, you’ll give your dental health a huge boost!

If you’re worried you have one or more of these bad habits – we can help you break them! To learn more about breaking these habits, visit Century Stone Dental for a consultation, or contact us at (905)-545-4833.

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How to Deal With Dental Anxiety

by on August 19, 2017 | Posted in Blog

Fear of the dentist is a lot more common than you think. In fact, an estimated 13% to 24% of people around the world are affected by some form of dental anxiety. Fortunately for most people, dental anxiety is disturbing but not disabling. However, others are so terrified of going to the dentist that the mere thought can be crippling. Those who suffer from a more severe form of dental anxiety suffer from something called; dental phobia. Someone with dental phobia will avoid a visit to the dentist at all costs, even if that means ignoring an infection or a toothache that’s interfering with day-to-day activities.

If you find yourself so nervous about visiting the dentist that it is affecting your oral health and deterring you from going to your check-ups all together, you may be experiencing dental anxiety, fear or phobia.

Why Do People Fear the Dentist?

Dental anxiety, fear, or phobia is usually triggered by a specific event, experience or expectation. Many people who fear the dentist develop this fear after having a bad encounter, while others find the entire experience overwhelming or even embarrassing. Some people dread the dentist simply because they anticipate the visit to be painful – though many dentists offer sedatives to make patients feel more comfortable and at ease.

So what can you do if you, or someone you know, is allowing their fear of the dentist to compromise their health? Check out these 7 great tips to learn how to deal with dental anxiety:

Acknowledge and Communicate Your Fears

In order to come to terms with your feelings, you need to be able to address them. Acknowledging your fears is the first step to overcoming them. Write your fears down or speak openly about them to someone you trust. If you can’t admit to your fears you won’t be able to address them directly and ultimately, you will struggle to overcome them.

Once you’re able to recognize your fears you must communicate them to your dentist. Don’t worry, your dentist won’t take any offence. Dentists are used to dealing with hesitant patients. By explaining your fears to your dentist he or she will be able to work with you to help you find ways to get comfortable at their office

Take Small Steps

If you have dental anxiety, the last thing you should be doing is rushing in and out of the dentist’s office to get a major procedure. Instead, you should be taking small steps to acclimate to your dentist’s office in order to reduce your fear and create new and better experiences.

The right doctor will understand your fear and won’t schedule you for any major treatments until they know for certain you are comfortable. Start small with a check-up or a polish – even just sitting in the dental chair for a few minutes is a step in the right direction – then slowly progress into more advanced treatments if necessary.

Bring a Friend or a Family Member

Bring a companion to appointments for support and assurance. Depending on the nature of your procedure, your dentist might even allow your friend to join you and keep you company during the treatment itself.

Be sure to bring someone supportive who does not have any anxiety or phobia about visiting the dentist.

Practice Relaxation Techniques

There are several different relaxation techniques you can use to help relax while in the dental chair. For starters, you can distract yourself using your imagination. Close your eyes and think of something that makes you happy, think up some fun plans for your upcoming weekend, or solve a work issue in your head. No matter what you choose to daydream about it will take your mind off the issue at hand.

If you’re not able to allow your mind to wander, focus on your breathing. According to Harvard Medical School, deep breathing has the power to evoke the body’s natural relaxation response. If you feel your body tensing up, breathe slowly and deeply.

Consider Noise-Cancelling Headphones

If the mere sounds of a dental procedure is enough to make your stomach queasy, consider bringing noise-cancelling headphones and soothing music to your next appointment. If music isn’t your thing, bring a podcasts or read-aloud book to listen to while you’re in the waiting room or during your treatment.

Ask for Sedatives

A dentist can administer sedation to keep a patient calm and relaxed during their treatment. To administer sedation, a dentist will place a mask, similar to an oxygen mask over your face.

At Century Stone Dental we offer patients nitrous oxide (also known as “laughing gas”). You will receive an incremental dose of nitrous oxide until you begin to feel the full effects. The exact dose of gas varies from person to person, as some are more sensitive to it than others.

Find the Right Dentist

Finding the right dental practice can play a huge role in overcoming your dental fears. Ask friends and family for recommendations or look up local listings and read reviews.

Make a list of practices you think would be right for you then call each practice one by one. During each phone call, ask questions and pay attention to how the staff responds. Do they make you feel comfortable or do they sound dismissive?  Are they helpful or are they meandering about? If you’re comfortable talking with them on the phone then schedule an appointment to meet the dentist in person!

On your visit, be aware of the atmosphere and take a look at your surroundings. If the office is clean and makes you feel relaxed, then that’s a good sign that it’s a practice that will be able to address both your oral health problems and your dental anxieties.

When it comes to the dentist themselves, the right dentist will offer assurance and will not just listen to your fears but will address them without making you feel judged.

 

Next time you’re due for a trip to the dentist, remember these 7 tips. In the end, it’s in everyone’s interest to overcome dental fear and make dental treatment a calm, comfortable, and safe experience.

 

Sources:

https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/dental-fear-our-readers-suggest-coping-techniques-20100825327

http://www.colgate.com/en/us/oc/oral-health/basics/dental-visits/article/what-is-dental-anxiety-and-phobia

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Getting your kids to brush their teeth can be challenging. Most parents know that their children should be brushing twice a day, though this is much easier said than done. Help your kids maintain their healthy smiling by making oral hygiene fun rather than have it feel like a chore. Good dental habits can last your child a lifetime and prevent future dental expenses.

Here are 6 awesome ways you can get your kids excited about oral health and make them actually want to brush their teeth:

 

Implement a Rewards System

Get your child more excited to brush by giving them “gold stars” every time they do. Create a simple chart that tracks your child’s daily brushing and flossing. Each time they brush for two-minutes, or floss, allow your child to add a check-mark or sticker to their chart. Reward your child for never missing a brushing every day, week and/or month.

 

Involve Your Child in Shopping For Tooth-Friendly Food

Bring your child along to the grocery store and have them help pick out tooth-friendly foods. Children are more inclined to want cookies, candy and chips than foods that will benefit their health. But suddenly introducing unfamiliar healthy foods to your child may make them feel uncomfortable and will deter them from wanting to eat these foods. Next time you purchase groceries, take your child with you and allow them to select food that will be beneficial to their oral hygiene. Foods like fruits, vegetables, cheese, lean meats and nuts will help keep your child’s smile happy and healthy.

When it comes to snack time, make sure you have tooth-friendly food on hand. Chop up carrots, cut up cheese into cubes, or prepare a trail mix so that healthy snacks are readily available when your child becomes hungry between meals or before bedtime.

If you’re looking to get creative, involve your child in growing your very own healthy food. There’s no doubt that your child will want to taste their own homegrown products.


Introduce a Brushing Buddy

Have your child invite their favourite stuffed animal or doll along with them to brush their teeth. Young children will often feel happier brushing their teeth if they’ve brushed their “friend’s” teeth first. Nevertheless, oral hygiene is important for everyone!

 

Be Imaginative

To educate younger children on healthy oral care habits, tell stories or show videos.  Kids don’t care about “tooth decay” and “gingivitis” — these words can be too complicated for young children and often don’t translate well. If you want them to listen, you’re going to have to make it fun.

Make up stories about “cavity monsters” that love to munch on teeth, or remind them that the tooth fairy only selects the best and brightest teeth to build her castle. No matter what tale you choose to tell, remember to always make the toothbrush the hero!

 

Two-Minute Tooth-Brushing Tunes

Ideally, teeth should be brushed after every meal because the bacterial attack on teeth begins minutes after eating. The Canadian Dental Association recommends brushing twice a day for two to three minutes each time. … That’s a lot of brushing! Even two minutes can feel like an eternity to a child.

The best way to ensure your child is brushing long enough is to make it fun with songs. Make up your own brushing song, or create a playlist of two-minute songs that your child can listen to in order to help them time their brushing.  A simple YouTube search can pull up a number of fun two-minute tooth brushing tunes that your child will love.

 

Let Your Child Choose Their Own Oral Hygiene Goodies

There are so many thematic and colourful toothbrushes on the market today and such a variety of flavours of floss and toothpaste to choose from. Bring your child to the store and let them pick out a new toothbrush and some other oral hygiene goodies to go along with it. With a new toothbrush your child will be more excited to give their teeth a cleaning.

Remember, toothbrushes should be replaced every three months. That means every three months your child can look forward to picking out a new toothbrush!

 

Teaching your child the importance of a proper oral hygiene routine will ensure their smiles stays happy and healthy for years to come. Call us at (905)-545-4833 today to book your child an appointment with one of our dentists!

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Mouthguards: Fighting Sports-Related Injuries

by on August 11, 2017 | Posted in Blog

Every year thousands of athletes sustain traumatic dental and head injuries while playing their favourite sports. From hockey to handball, these injuries do not discriminate. The upside is that most of these injuries can be avoided with the use of a well-fitted mouthpiece while active in the sport.

No matter your age, your gender, your league or the level of contact sport you might be playing, you should always, always be wearing a mouthguard while participating. Absolutely any athlete can be at risk of a dental injury, and most of these types of injuries can be prevented with the use of a mouthguard.

Neglecting to wear a mouthguard while playing a contact sport could land you a trip to the dentist – or worse –  it could cost you a trip to the emergency room!

Sports-related dental injuries send more than 600,000 people to the emergency room every year! And that’s not even the worst case scenario. Without the use of a mouthguard you could chip or break teeth, fracture crowns or bridgework, risk lip and cheek injuries, cause root damage to the teeth or fracture jaws. But there’s more; mouthguards protect against jaw fractures and concussions by absorbing the energy of a traumatic blow to the chin.  The importance of mouthguards in sports cannot be overstated.

At present, mouthguards are mandatory for most contact sports. Children who play hockey, football and rugby are often required to wear a mouthguard but the truth of the matter is, a mouthguard should be worn during any sport where a dental injury could occur.

 

Sports For Which You May Need a Mouthguard:

  • Acrobatics
  • Basketball
  • Bicycling
  • Boxing
  • Extreme sports
  • Field events
  • Field hockey
  • Football
  • Gymnastics
  • Handball
  • Ice hockey
  • Inline skating
  • Lacrosse
  • Martial arts
  • Rugby
  • Shotputting
  • Skateboarding
  • Skiing
  • Soccer
  • Softball
  • Squash
  • Volleyball
  • Water polo
  • Weightlifting
  • Wrestling

 

If you participate in any of the activities on the list above, it is strongly recommended that you wear a properly fitted mouthguard.  Fortunately, you don’t need to stress about a mouthguard distracting you from your sport as bulky mouthguards are no longer the only option. Due to the popularity of contact sports, mouthguards now come in all different shapes, sizes and colours and can be customized to suit your preferences.

Choosing a Mouthguard:

There are three types of mouthguards to choose from:

  1. Custom-Made: These types of mouthguards are made by your dentist. They are more expensive than other forms of mouthguards as they are designed individually for comfort and fit. For a custom-made mouthguard, your dentist will take an impression of your teeth then use it as a mold for your guard.
  2. Boil and Bite: These mouthguards can be bought at any sporting goods store and even at some drugstores. These guards must be softened in boiled water then inserted into your mouth to allow the guard to adapt to the shape of your mouth. Boil and bite guards can cost anywhere from $10 – $50.
  3. Stock: These mouthguards are the most inexpensive as they typically cost less than $15 and are available at most drugstores and sporting goods stores. These sports guards come pre-formed and ready to wear. Unfortunately they don’t fit very well and many find them to be so bulky that they make breathing difficult. Mostly due to the fact that it can’t be customized for its wearer, the level of protection that a stock appliance provides is typically the lowest of all the types of sports mouthguards.

But with all these options, how can you know which one is best?

 

The Doctor’s Recommendation:

The most effective mouthguards are resilient, tear-resistant and comfortable. Ideally, your mouthguard should fit properly, be durable and easy to clean, and not restrict your speech or breathing.

At Century Stone Dental, we recommend a custom-made mouthguard. Though custom-made mouthguards don’t run cheap, the benefits of protecting your child far outweigh the costs associated with a dental or medical injury, which is more likely to occur with a store bought guard.

Studies have shown that when compared to over -the-counter versions, a custom-made mouthguard is essential to a player’s safety. According to a 2014 study from May/June issue of General Dentistry, high school football players wearing store-bought mouthguards were more than twice as likely to suffer mild traumatic brain injures (MTBI)/concussions than those wearing custom-made, properly fitted mouthguards.

 

Ultimately, wearing a mouthguard is a small price to pay to prevent a lifetime of dental treatment.

 

To order a custom-made mouthguard for you or your child, call us at Century Stone Dental today! (905)545-4833.

 

 

 

 

Sources

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140501101133.htm

https://consumer.healthday.com/dental-and-oral-information-9/misc-dental-problem-news-174/mouthguard-a-key-defense-against-sports-related-injuries-716284.html

http://www.colgate.com/en/us/oc/oral-health/conditions/dental-emergencies-and-sports-safety/article/important-reasons-for-mouth-guards

http://www.ada.org/~/media/ADA/Science%20and%20Research/Files/patient_40.ashx

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The Ultimate Toothpaste Guide

by on March 29, 2017 | Posted in Blog

The Ultimate Toothpaste Guide

How to choose the right toothpaste for you? 

Choosing the right toothpaste can be confusing with so many types and flavours on the market today. The shelves in the dental hygiene aisle at stores are filled with a variety of dental care products. The large selections make it overwhelming to choose the best product that suits your needs.

When asking our registered Dental Hygienist, Josie at Century Stone Dental, what tooth paste do you recommend to your patients, her response was: “As long as it contains fluoride it all comes down to your preference and personal needs.”

Josie explains there are a two different forms of toothpaste on the market a paste or gel. This decision will be based on the texture and taste preference. Gels tend to be less abrasive as they are smooth in texture and do not create a foamy texture like you get with a paste. If you’re a messy brusher gels tend to create less of a spatter. Pastes are thicker and gritty in texture and tend to be a solid color.  Typically creating a bit of a mess. The taste and flavour will vary between gel and paste so experiment to see what you like better.

Secondly, Josie will talk to her patients about their personal needs; do they have sensitivity, dry mouth, build up a lot of tarter in-between appointments or looking for a bit brighter smile.

There are many options available to fit your individual needs, this handy little guide will help you make an informed decision so you can keep your teeth sparkling clean and healthy between routine visits.

Tartar Control Toothpaste

Tartar control toothpaste is a good choice for people who are looking to decrease tartar buildup. These products contain ingredients that are effective in breaking down plaque on the teeth before it hardens into harder-to-remove plaque. It is important to note that it does little to prevent tartar buildup below the gum line, and it is intended to prevent tartar from forming rather than removing it.

Popular choices: Crest pro-health advanced and Colgate total advanced health

Toothpaste for Sensitive Teeth

If you experience sensitivity when eating or drinking hot or cold foods, toothpaste formulated for sensitive teeth may be your best option. These toothpastes are generally less abrasive than other formulas, and they usually contain either strontium chloride or potassium nitrate. These chemical compounds aid in the reduction of sensitivity by blocking the passageways that travel through the teeth to the nerves.

Popular choices: Sensodyne Rapid relief or Sensodyne Repair and protect

Toothpaste for Dry Mouth

If you find tooth paste burns when brushing this could be caused by dry mouth.  The Biotene line of products is specially formulated to manage a dry mouth and relieve the symptoms of Dry Mouth, a condition often caused by medication use. Moisturizing Gel, Oral Rinses and Mouth Spray provide lubricating comfort and lasting Dry Mouth symptom relief. Biotene toothpastes are formulated to not irritate. All Biotene moisturizing products have a balanced pH similar to natural saliva.

Whitening Toothpaste

A popular choice for individuals who want a brighter smile are seeking a toothpaste that contains whitening properties may be a start. In fact, peroxide is an essential ingredient in whitening toothpaste that is the most effective at removing stains from the outer layer of the enamel. Whitening toothpaste sometimes causes sensitivity and is abrasive therefore Josie would not recommend using it regularly. Also, it is considerably less effective than professional whitening treatments.

Popular choices: Colgate Optic White Sparkling and Crest 3D Brilliance EST

Children’s Toothpaste

When shopping for toothpaste for your entire family, it is important to note that your kids should have their own. Start with a training toothpaste for toddlers, as it is completely safe to swallow. Children’s toothpaste is the best choice for older kids. It is very similar to adult toothpaste, but it typically comes in flavors that are more appealing to kids, and it contains less fluoride.

Popular choices- Infants Nuk tooth and gum cleanser 3m+

-Toddlers Crest pro-health stages

-Orajel- training toothpaste 6m-4yrs

-Children – aqua fresh-little teeth 4-6years

Natural Toothpaste

Natural toothpaste is popping up more and more today. If you’re uncomfortable with common toothpaste ingredients, natural alternative is a good choice to consider.  It consists of herbal and earth ingredients, some of the ingredients can include mint, fluoride and xylitol to name a few. Although some natural toothpaste can be a bit more expensive, they can work the same way as a regular paste.  Just be aware some natural tooth paste does not contain fluoride.

Popular choices – Toms Whole Care, Natural with Tea Tree Oil

Whatever your toothpaste needs are, be sure to choose toothpaste that has earned a Canadian Dental Association (CDA) seal of approval. Toothpastes that have earned this distinction have been evaluated for safety and effectiveness by an independent review board of scientific experts.

The next time you’re shopping for toothpaste, we hope that the information provided by our team at Century Stone Dental will help you in making your selection. If you have any questions about what the best choice would be for your needs, please ask one of dental hygienists at Century Stone Dental.

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