Inflamed gums are a fairly common dental issue, but unfortunately, many people don't take the problem seriously enough. If you ignore inflamed gums and continue your usual routine, you could be encouraging a much more severe inflammatory problem, and the pain that goes along with that. Fortunately, it is quite easy to relieve inflamed gums if you use the tips below
USE SOFT BRISTLES
A soft-bristle toothbrush - the sofest you can buy - is a must for anyone with inflamed gums. Anything that makes contact with your gums can cause you pain, so fine and soft bristles are always the best choice.
USE SENSITIVE FORMULA TOOTHPASTE
The toothpaste marketed as "Sensitive Teeth Formula" contain special ingredients to help relieve sensitivity. When your gums are inflamed, even light brushing can cause some pain. Using a special toothpaste will help reduce that pain and make it easier to brush your teeth effectively. The effect becomes stronger as you use the toothpaste more, so use it for each brushing.
VISIT THE DENTIST
If your gums remain swollen for more than a few days or a week, set up an appointment with our office. There is a long list of conditions that could be causing your swollen gums, everything from gum disease to pregnancy, so you need to discover where your issue is coming from. Most of the time, your condition can easily be treated by our office.
With the start of Summer officially here, many people become more active. Although most summertime athletes have already hit the field for fun, take a look at the following precautions to consider when it comes to keeping your teeth safe as you enjoy playing your favorite sports.
USE A MOUTHGUARD
If you or your kids participate in contact sports this summer, make sure that they wear a properly fitted mouthguard. Athletes can avoid serious mouth and jaw injuries by using a mouthguard specifically designed for your sport.
BE MINDFUL OF SPORTS DRINKS
While sports drinks can be refreshing after a game, they unfortunately contain high levels of sugar and citric acid, which are known to erode or dissolve the teeth and reduce the minerals in the outer tooth enamel. The simplest way to prevent sports drinks from damaging your teeth is to avoid them completely and drink water instead. Water is a great option to keep you hydrated before, during, and after the game.
Did you know that there are certain foods that you can eat which help to clean your teeth? We call them "detergent foods." In dentistry, we look at the impact of food in three ways: the kind of food, how often it is eaten, and when it is eaten. Detergent foods should be the last piece of food you consume during a meal for best results. Think of them as the closest you can get to brushing your teeth.
A healthy diet is important for oral health as well as overall health, but here are some particular foods that can help clean your teeth and mouth:
<> Celery Sticks
As you can see, detergent foods are usually foods that are firm and crisp. They act like scrubbers on and around your teeth and gums and bring your mouth's pH to 7.0, which is optimal.
Cookies, cakes, breads, chips, crackers, soft drinks, dried fruit, and candies provide carbohydrates to the bacteria in your mouth causing an acidic environment and increasing the chance of cavities and decay. These foods are sticky and don't rinse easily from your mouth. Avoid letting these foods sit on your teeth after eating them. This is where detergent foods come into play. When you are about to finish your meal, have an apple, celery stick, or carrot. It will act like a "natural toothbrush." Also, try to make these detergent foods the basis for snacks that you have throughout the day!
Always remember, these foods are NOT a replacement for brushing and flossing. You still need good dental hygiene regardless of what you are eating! If you have any questions or are in need of an appointment, call our office at 918-455-0123!
Temporomandibular dysfunction (TMD) refers to a diverse range of disorders that relate to muscular function in the jaw and face - the temporomandibular joint (TMJ). That could mean difficulty opening your mouth, pain in the jaw or face, or any sort of problem with the jaw joint.
TMD can be difficult to diagnose because of the varied causes. Whatever the case, an accurate diagnosis helps to make the treatment as successful as possible. The good news is that most often, jaw problems will resolve themselves within several weeks or months. Surgeries like arthrocentesis, arthroscopy, and open-joint surgery should be a last resort. More conservative and reversible treatments should come first and are in fact the most critical step in the treatment of TMD.
Less invasive treatments like acupuncture and splints can be helpful, but that will depend on each particular case. A combination of treatments will most often produce the greatest relief for TMJ patients. It's a good idea to avoid activities that overuse the jaws. such as chewing gum or clenching your jaws.
Being Proactive in finding relief for TMD can also be achieved by many home remedies:
<> EAT SOFT FOODS: When you eat soft food, the jaw gets an opportunity to rest. Avoid chewy and crunchy food, and food that requires you to open your mouth wide, like apples or corn on the cob.
<> APPLY MOIST HEAT: A hot water bottle wrapped in a moist towel can help reduce symptoms.
<> RELAXATION: Actively try to relax the muscles of the face and lips, and let your teeth come apart.
<> AVOID WIDE YAWNS: Keeping the fist under the jaw when a yawn is coming on, can help to keep the jaw from opening too widely.
You've heard people tell you to say "cheese" when you're having your picture taken, probaby more times than you can count. There is another reason you should be saying "cheese"...or "YES" to eating cheese. Although most people have heard that chewing sugar free gum is recommended if you cannot brush your teeth twenty minutes after eating, most may not know that eating cheese can also provide a dental benefit.
CBS News reported on the results of a study that was published in the May/June 2013 issue of General Dentistry, a publication of the Academy of General Dentistry. The study showed that cheese increases dental plaque pH, but in this case, the plaque increase is not a bad thing. When a person eats cheese, the increase of the pH of the plaque on your teeth, creates a protective coating that may lower the risk of tooth decay.
An analysis of the story from the General Dentistry journal, including the details of the study and its participants, was published in Science Daily. The study looked at 68 children between the ages of 12 and 15. A similar study was conducted by British researchers who reported their findings in the British Dental Journal in 1999. The conclusion was that cheese has anti-cavity properties. That is not the only benefit, however. In another study, researchers found that cheese may give teeth a protective coating that helps lessen enamel erosion caused by acidic foods, particularly from sugar-sweetened soft drinks.
So don't just say cheese for pictures. If you want to have a happy, healthy and long-lasting smile, go for cheese. If you have any questions or are in need of an appointment, call our dental office at 918-455-0123!
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