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School snacks for healthy teeth

With the return to school fast approaching our office sees the improvement in your child’s oral health. No more all-day summer snacking and slurping back sugary drinks.

The snacks you send in your child’s lunch can help keep their smile healthy all year long.

School Snacks, Dentist Approved:

  • Fresh fruit and crunchy vegetables. They’re high in fiber and will help fill up hungry tummies. Bonus: chewing crisp fruits and veggies can scrub away food particles and plaque.
    • While citrus fruits, such as oranges, and grapefruit are healthy and delicious,  citrus fruits contain citric acid which can cause enamel erosion. Moderation is important!
  • Unsalted and low-salt nuts, such as almonds or walnuts.
  • A lunch meat and cheese roll up.
  • Cottage cheese or low-sugar yogurt. Both are excellent sources of calcium and vitamin D, which promote healthy bones and teeth!
  • Peanut Butter (especially natural) is packed with fiber and protein. Spread on celery stalks, apple slices, or on wraps with bananas.
  • Small cubes of cheese. Especially cheddar, Monterey Jack, Swiss, and other aged cheeses. These cheeses trigger the flow of saliva which helps to wash food particles away from teeth.
  • Choose water instead of soda or juice!

Uh-Oh! School Snacks to Avoid:

  Dried fruit, fruit leathers and fruit snacks
Not only are they loaded with sugar, but these snacks are gooey and sticky and cling to the surface of teeth and gums.

  • Energy, protein or granola bars
    These may seem like a good choice, but they are very similar to candy bars in the amount of sugar and calories. Many contain sticky dried fruit that cling to teeth  long after the snack is eaten.
  • Cracker snacks
    White flour crackers like goldfish, graham crackers, and bagel chips also stick to teeth. These types of crackers contain carbohydrates that turn into sugar when broken down. Try healthier alternatives like whole grain crackers and triscuits.
  • Sports drinks
    Sports drinks contain extra calories and high levels of sugar, almost as much as soda. They are also  acidic and can contribute to enamel erosion.

Call today for your back-to-school cleaning!

Sleep troubles? How we can help with snoring.

Are you waking up every morning feeling more tired than the night before? Are you being kicked by your partner all night because of your snoring? Sleep doesn’t come easily to everyone.

Did you know dentists have special training to deal with OSA, Obstructive Sleep Apnea? Your dentist can recognize your risk factors for sleep apnea from the size of your jaw opening (too small) and size of your tongue (too large). Both of which can obstruct your airway. Together with your GP we can work towards your good night’s rest.

Sleep apnea doesn’t just make you feel tired, it also affects your oral health. OSA forces you to breath out of your mouth all night which can cause dry mouth which can lead to tooth decay, plaque build up, mouth sores, and periodontal disease.

How we can help you sleep:

When you come in for your next appointment with Dr. Ross, let us know about your sleeping problems. We will contact your GP and request that they send you for a sleep study. Together with your physician we will determine if oral appliance therapy is an appropriate course of action and you will be referred back to our office so we can make your appliance.

Oral appliances for Obstructive Sleep Apnea are a non-invasive way to prevent airway collapse in people with mild to moderate OSA. Many people find it more comfortable and convenient than a CPAP machine. While studies show 92% of patients wearing oral appliances found snoring to be either eliminated or significantly improved.

We want to help you feel rested and refreshed!

Call us today to book an appointment!

 

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Surprising Facts About Teeth!

Let’s explore some of the most surprising things you probably didn’t know about teeth!

Your Teeth:
  1. Your teeth’s enamel is the hardest substance in your body. Just don’t test in on bottle caps because…
  2. Teeth are the only part of your body that do not naturally heal.
  3. But on average, people only spend 48 seconds each time they brush – the standard recommendation is 2 minutes!
  4. So three out of every four Americans has some form of periodontal gum disease.
Other Creatures:

5. Some snails have more than 20, 000 teeth, even though their mouth’s are no bigger than a pinhead

6. An elephant’s tusks are actually teeth!

7. Giraffes have the same number of teeth as humans – 32

8. You can tell the age of a dolphin by counting the rings on its teeth – just like a tree

 Historically:

9. Barbers used to pull teeth – talk about a one-stop-shop

10. Most Americans did not brush their teeth every day until after World War 2. In WW2, the military required soldiers to brush their teeth twice a day, and they brought that habit home after the war.

11. Neolithic humans filled cavities in their teeth with beeswax

12. The cotton candy machine was co-created by a dentist who called it “Fairy Floss”. Now that’s surprising!

Your Dentist:

13. DDS vs. DMD – DDS means Doctor of Dental Surgery, DMD means Doctor of Dental Medicine. The degrees are the same as they have the same education but each practitioner can decide what their degree is called.

14. You can’t lie to your dentist – General dentists can tell a great deal about your habits, diet, and oral hygiene routine just by looking at your teeth. They can tell if you floss everyday or just for the days leading up to your appointment. They can also tell what types of foods you eat and whether you grind or clench your teeth.

15. Your dentist is an artist – Dentistry is an artistic as well as scientific profession. Dentists must have an artist’s aesthetic sense, an eye for detail and the manual dexterity to perform precise procedures in a small area.

Call today for your appointment https://austindentalgroups.com/contact/

Pulling Baby Teeth – When and How?

Should you be pulling out baby teeth? How and when is the best time?

Youtube can show you countless creative ways to pull out baby teeth; from the “slamming door” method to newer techniques like the nerf gun. For some kids this is harmless fun, but for others it can be painful and scary.

It’s important to remember that teeth should only be pulled when they are loose enough to come out with very little pulling by the parent or child. Having a loose tooth can become uncomfortable as it can shift around and poke the gums affecting chewing. Remember that you want to make sure the tooth is not pulled out prematurely. Let your child be in control of the situation; this will ease anxiety and fear surrounding losing a tooth.

Your child will likely play with the tooth with their tongue throughout the day, gradually loosening it. If they are becoming anxious to lose the tooth offer crunchy snacks like apples to speed up the process.

When the tooth is truly ready to fall out organically there should be little or no blood, but have gauze ready to clean the area and rinse the mouth out to keep the site clean.

If your child has a loose tooth that is causing pain or keeping them up at night, call our office to make an appointment and we can assess if the tooth will need to be extracted in office.

(604) 936-1263 or email https://austindentalgroups.com/contact/

Don’t forget to read last week’s blog about the tooth fairy for more information!

 

 

How to encourage good oral hygiene in kids

The more knowledge you can give your kids about dental hygiene, the more likely they are to continue good habits into adulthood – but that doesn’t mean teaching them needs to be boring! There are many great resources available and experiments you can do at home to spark interest in your child.

Show them the plaque that is forming on their teeth by making your own “plaque disclosing solution”. Mix 3-4 drops of red food dye in 3 tablespoons of water and have your child “swish” the solution around like a mouthwash for 10 seconds. Once they spit it out, look in a magnifying mirror and find all the red areas (indicating plaque). Have your child brush their teeth then repeat swishing the solution again to show how much plaque was removed by brushing.

Read to them; there are many great children’s books available about brushing, flossing, and “sugar bugs”.  Click the link to see the 10 Best Children’s Books on Brushing your Teeth as chosen by Babble: https://www.babble.com/crafts-activities/the-10-best-childrens-books-on-brushing-your-teeth/

Demonstrate how to brush your teeth properly – especially in toddlers when they are most interested in copying everything mom and dad do!

Let them try brushing your teeth! Not only is this a great bonding experience, it gives your child a close-up, tactile experience with teeth and gums. Don’t forget to brush again after!

Play Music when brushing. Not only does it make brushing more fun, it encourages kids to brush the full length of the song or the recommended 2 minutes.

Let them pick their own toothbrushes and fun flavoured toothpaste. Toothpaste doesn’t need to be mint flavoured to be effective! Why not let them pick a brush with their favourite character and some toothpaste that tastes like berries or bubblegum!

 

To book your family in for their next cleaning appointment, call today! (604) 936-1263

 

Dental Sealants – What are they and why is my Dentist recommending them?

Dental sealants are a great way to prevent decay from forming in the grooves of our teeth. Teeth are formed with grooves and pits in them that can trap food and the longer these food particles stay trapped in these areas the more likely they are to develop decay.

While most of us are aware of the traditional way of cleaning our teeth ie: brushing, flossing, and mouthwash; manual plaque removal does not always work when your teeth have deep fissures in their surfaces. When this happens your Dentist may recommend dental sealants to help with the deeper, uncleanable grooves. Dentists recommend dental sealants most often when children’s permanent premolars and molars are erupting into the mouth.

Sealants require no freezing and are a thin, transparent resin painted onto the biting surface of the tooth and light cured to harden. The resin fills in the narrow grooves, decreasing your risk of decay. Sealants generally last 5-8 years before needing to be reapplied.

Dr. Shahriary can tell you at your next visit if any of your teeth should be sealed and protected, because not all teeth need sealants.

Remember to maintain regular visits to the dentist for dental examinations and professional cleanings.

Call Today! (604) 936-1263