Tag Archives: sugar-free gum

Halloween Treats Can Be Frightening for Your Teeth

Halloween Treats Can Be Frightening for Your Teeth

TreatsThe witching hour is upon us. With the likes of creepy clowns, the walking undead and deranged killers lurking in the shadows, Halloween is the most delightfully scary day of the year. But, Michael Myers isn’t the only scary thing on Halloween, some of those sugary treats can be pretty terrifying for your teeth.

Here are a few scary and not-so-scary candy for your fangs.

Scary:

  • Hard candy – Hard candy is tough on teeth because it stays in your mouth for an extended period of time. This ultimately coats teeth with sugar. Additionally, biting down on hard candy can chip or break teeth.
  • Chewy candy – Chewy, sticky treats are particularly damaging because they are high in sugar. Because they spend a prolonged amount of time stuck to teeth, they are more difficult for saliva to break down.

Not so scary:

  • Sugar-free candy and gum with xylitol – Sugar-free foods don’t contain sugar, which feeds on bacteria in the mouth and produce decay-causing acids. Gum and candy with xylitol may actually protect teeth by reducing the acids produced by bacteria and increasing saliva to rinse away excess sugars and acids.
  • Powdery candy – Sure, powdery candy is packed with pure sugar, but the texture allows it to dissolve quickly which prevents sugar from sticking to teeth and producing acids and bacteria.
  • Chocolate – Chocolate dissolves quickly in the mouth, which decreases the amount of time sugar stays in contact with teeth. Also, the calcium in chocolate can potentially help protect tooth enamel.

So, you can have your candy and eat it too! You just have to make the right choices. Scary things happen to those that don’t brush. Be sure to brush and floss, so those Halloween treats won’t haunt your mouth later on.

If you find all that Halloween candy has left your teeth a bit scary, or you need a good post-Halloween cleaning, feel free to give please call us, at 972-242-2155, for an appointment. Or, you can use the “Ask Dr. Griffin” form at the top of this page.

October is National Dental Hygiene Month

Smile! October is National Dental Hygiene Month!national dental hygiene month

Did you know that October is National Dental Hygiene Month? Which is only fitting since it also happens be the biggest candy eating month of the year!

This October marks the seventh straight year that the American Dental Hygienists’ Association (ADHA) and the William Wrigley Jr. Company are teaming together during National Dental Hygiene Month (NDHM2016).

The goal of NDHM2016 is to increase public awareness about the importance of maintaining good oral health with four main components: Brush. Floss. Rinse. Chew. Which the ADHA has dubbed the “Daily 4”.

The “Daily 4”:

1. Brushing Your Teeth 2 times per day for 2 minutes

The single most important thing we can do is to brush our teeth for two minutes, twice each day. Proper brushing reduces plaque, prevents cavities, and help limit the onset of gum disease.

2. Flossing daily

Daily flossing (or other methods of interdental cleaning) removes plaque and food particles that cannot be reached by a toothbrush, particularly under the gum line and between teeth. Failure to do so can allow for plaque buildup in these areas – which in turn can lead to tooth decay and gum disease.

3. Rinsing with mouthwash

The ADHA recommends finishing your daily oral care routine with an antiseptic mouthwash that carries the ADA Seal of Acceptance. Swish, gargle, and spit – this should be one of the easiest things we can do to ensure the long-lasting health of our teeth and gums.

4. Chewing sugar-free gum

Scientific evidence clearly shows that chewing sugar-free gum, especially after eating and drinking, has a positive impact on oral health. Chewing sugar-free gum stimulates the most important natural defense against tooth decay — saliva — which in turn helps fight cavities, neutralizes plaque acids, remineralizes enamel to strengthen teeth and washes away food particles.

We, here at Paul A. Griffin, DDS, PA, encourage you to do “The Daily 4″, and of course visit our office at least twice a year for your cleanings and exams! If you have any questions about maintaining your oral health or to schedule your next appointment please call us, at 972-242-2155, Or, you can use the “Ask Dr. Griffin” from at the top of this page.

 

The American Dental Hygienists’ Association (ADHA) is the largest national organization representing the professional interests of more than 185,000 dental hygienists across the country. Dental hygienists are preventive oral health professionals, licensed in dental hygiene, who provide educational, clinical and therapeutic services that support total health through the promotion of optimal oral health. For more information about the ADHA, dental hygiene or the link between oral health and general health, visit the ADHA at http://www.adha.org/national-dental-hygiene-month.

Dental Myths and Facts

Paul A. Griffin, DDS, PASeparating dental facts from fiction is an important part of maintaining your oral health. When it comes to dental hygiene, how do you know if what you hear or read is true? At Paul A. Griffin, DDS, PA, we emphasize the importance of providing our patients with accurate information regarding all aspects of their care, we’d like to talk about some common dental myths and facts.

Myth: If there is no visible problem with my teeth, I don’t have to see a dentist.

Fact: Just because your teeth look healthy doesn’t mean that it is a good idea to skip going to the dentist. You should visit our office twice a year for an exam and dental cleaning to make sure that your teeth stay healthy and that any dental problems are treated before they become serious.

Myth: My parents had good dental health so I don’t really have to worry about mine.

Fact: Though genetics may play a small role in determining your dental health, it is mostly up to you to take good care of your teeth and gums to keep them healthy in the long term.

Myth: Brushing my teeth more than once a day can harm my enamel.

Fact: Most dentists, including Dr. Griffin, recommend using a soft toothbrush to avoid being overly rough on gums and teeth. If you do so, you shouldn’t run into any problems brushing twice a day or — if possible — after each meal.

Myth: Chewing sugar-free gum after a meal is just as effective as brushing.

Fact: While chewing sugar-free gum after meals can help clean your teeth and freshen your breath after meals, it is no replacement for thoroughly brushing and flossing to remove dental plaque and debris.

Myth: I shouldn’t brush my teeth if my gums are bleeding.

Fact: Bleeding gums are often caused when dental plaque or food debris is not properly removed by regular brushing and flossing. If you notice that your gums become more prone to bleeding, it is a good idea to thoroughly and gently brush and floss them at least twice a day, if not more. If the bleeding continues, it could be a sign of periodontal disease. Call our office right away if you notice bleeding gums that do not get better.

Myth: If I have a toothache, placing an aspirin tablet next to the tooth will relieve pain.

Fact: At-home toothache remedies won’t correct your dental problems. Putting an aspirin tablet in direct contact with the soft tissues of your mouth will not help relieve a toothache, and can lead to painful chemical burns — don’t do it!

Myth: Teeth whitening will damage my enamel.

Fact: Teeth whitening has gotten much safer as new technological developments in both over-the-counter and in-office products have evolved. In general, if you follow directions and consult Dr. Griffin about possible dental treatment options, you should have nothing to worry about.

Myth: It isn’t really important to take care of my child’s baby teeth because they are going to fall out in a few years anyway.

Fact: Not only is it a good idea to start teaching your child about good oral hygiene at an early age, neglecting to take proper care of their baby teeth can cause problems with their bite or permanent teeth if they fall out too early.

Myth: All dental procedures must be avoided during pregnancy.

Fact: Although certain procedures, such as X-rays or dental surgery, should be avoided during pregnancy, regular dental treatments should continue as usual.

 

Knowing the difference between oral health myths and the truth can help you avoid disease, decay, and other common dental problems now and in the future. If you’d like to learn more about ways to achieve and maintain optimal oral health, contact our office today at 972-242-2155. Or, you can use the “Ask Dr. Griffin” form at the top of this page.