The Importance of Biannual Dental Cleanings

Many people procrastinate about having their dental cleanings done. Most of the individuals who put their dental exam and cleaning off are just too busy or feel anxious about visiting the dentist because they have neglected to care for their teeth properly. Despite the reason for the delay, putting off biannual cleanings and checkups can be costly, in more ways than one.

Tartar Buildup and Its Effect on the Teeth

Plaque left on the teeth hardens, turning into tartar (aka dental calculus). This hardening occurs within 48 hours. Since tartar must be removed by a dental professional (typically a dental hygienist), when a dental cleaning is postponed, the dental calculus on the teeth accumulates and cavities may begin to develop beneath it.

Preventing Gum Disease Requires More Than Practicing Good Dental Hygiene

Even individuals who are strict about following their dental hygiene routine are at risk for developing gum disease when they skip their biannual cleanings. While practicing good dental hygiene is extremely beneficial for the health of the teeth and gums, once the plaque hardens into tartar, it can only be removed by a dental professional.

During a Dental Cleaning, the Hygienist Removes the Tartar Beneath the Gum Line

Besides removing the visible dental calculus on the teeth, the dental hygienist also removes the tartar that has built up beneath the gum line. Since a toothbrush and floss are both unable to reach this area, chances are that quite a bit of dental calculus has built up. Unless the hygienist removes this tartar, the likelihood of the individual developing gum disease, a receding gum line and exposed roots increases.

Gum Disease

As tartar builds up it irritates the gum line, causing it to become inflamed. Small pockets begin to form in the gingival tissue (aka gum tissue, gums) around the teeth. These pockets provide a place for food, bacteria and plaque to build up, causing even more inflammation. Once gum disease develops, bone and tooth loss is probable. However, having biannual dental cleanings helps prevent gum disease.

Halitosis (Bad Breath)

The plaque, tartar and stains on the teeth all consist of bacteria. These bacteria release sulfur, which causes foul-smelling breath. Since dental calculus and certain stains are nearly impossible to remove at home, a dental cleaning is the only way to address halitosis when it occurs due to these issues.

By having a cleaning and checkup at Kemper Meadow Family Dentistry every six months, the hygienist removes the built-up tartar and the dentist looks for any potential problems that need to be addressed. Preventing dental issues to begin with or addressing them early on is vital because the solutions to some dental problems can be costly. To schedule a dental cleaning and checkup at Kemper Meadow Family Dentistry in Cincinnati, call 1-513-648-9900.

 

What Are Dental Sealants?  

If you have visited your Cincinnati dentist recently, you’ve probably heard about dental sealants. Dental sealants are a relatively new dental treatment that protects teeth against decay. Primarily, dental sealants are given to children, before decay has a chance to set in. However, in some circumstances, dental sealants may be appropriate for adults. Talk to your dentist in Cincinnati about whether or not dental sealants are right for you.

What Are Dental Sealants?

Dental sealants are a dental treatment that is preventative. In other words, dental sealants don’t that any certain dental health problems, such as cavities. Instead, they work to keep such oral health problems from happening. Dental sealants are not considered to be 100% effective in combating cavities and other oral health problems. They are one extra step that you and your family can take to keep teeth healthy.

Dental sealants consist of a liquid substance that is “painted” onto the teeth. This substance hardens into a kind of barrier for the exterior of the teeth. It’s like an extra layer between your tooth enamel and the bacteria that can damage and get into your teeth, causing decay and other destruction.

What to Know About Dental Sealants

Dental sealants treatment is completely non-invasive. Your dentist in Cincinnati simply applies the dental sealants with a brush. No anesthesia or sedation is needed since no pain or discomfort is involved. Most often, dental sealants are recommended for children. If you decide to get dental sealants for your child, you won’t have to worry that they will be uncomfortable, since there is no discomfort with the application of dental sealants.

The dentist simply applies the dental sealants with a brush. The sealant is then allowed time to dry and harden. Note that dental sealants are clear, so you don’t need to worry that teeth will be discolored after dental sealants treatment. No one will be able to tell that dental sealants are in place.

If you are interested in learning more about dental sealants for your children or yourself, talk to your dentist in Cincinnati. At Kemper Meadow Family Dentistry, we’re happy to help with dental sealants and a variety of other preventative dental treatments for you and your family. Contact us today to learn more.

 

Biting Back – A Look at Common Solutions for Bruxism

Do you ever wake up with sore jaws or a headache? Have you caught yourself clenching your jaws when you feel stressed or when you concentrate? You may be dealing with bruxism (grinding teeth). Bruxism is a much more common issue than most people know. It is even estimated that about 10 percent of adults and 15 percent of children grind their teeth while they are sleeping at night. Unfortunately, teeth grinding can be the detriment of the health of your teeth and jaws and bring along a host of issues. Here is a look at some of the most effective and common forms of treatment for bruxism.

Protective Nightguards or Mouth Splints

Nightguards and mouth splints are one of the most common types of treatment for bruxism and can be highly effective if you primarily grind your teeth at night. Your dentist will create these devices by taking impressions of your bite, so the device can be worn comfortably while you sleep. The design ensures force from your bite is absorbed by the device instead of your jaws or teeth.

Anxiety or Stress Treatment or Therapy

In some cases, stress and anxiety are the root cause of bruxism; the actions are an almost unconscious act when you feel anxious or stressed. For some individuals, treatment for anxiety or stress through therapy can help to alleviate the teeth grinding behaviors.

Prescription Medications to Relax Jaw Muscles

Prescription muscle relaxers help to reduce the tension in the jaws, which may also help deter the act of clenching your jaws when you fall asleep. For individuals that experience a great deal of pain or spasms in their jaw muscles because of bruxism, prescription treatment with muscle relaxers can be extremely beneficial. However, this form of treatment should not be treated as a long-term solution, and using nightguards may still be recommended by a dentist to protect your teeth.

Find Out More About Bruxism Treatment in Cincinnati

When left untreated, teeth grinding can have a detrimental effect on your oral health. If you suspect you have been grinding your teeth and need professional advice, reach out to us at Kemper Meadow Family Dentistry in Cincinnati to schedule an appointment.

Can Snoring be Controlled?

Snoring is generally considered to be a harmless condition. After all, millions of people snore to some extent or another, and no one seems to suffer serious consequences from snoring. However, snoring can be a sign of something more serious. In addition, loud or unusually disruptive snoring can disturb sleeping partners, resulting in lost sleep. And, sleep deprivation is a serious condition that can have serious consequences.

What Causes Snoring?

To find out if snoring can be controlled, it’s helpful to have a general understanding of what causes snoring. Snoring happens when the airway is restricted in some way. It can be caused by a physical reason, such as an irregular formation of the anatomy, or it can be caused by sleeping in a weird position that restricts airflow. It can also be caused by congestion from excess mucous production during a cold or sinus infection. It can happen temporarily if a person suffers from allergies. Snoring may also happen if a person has taken excess alcohol or is obese. For a better assessment of what causes your snoring problem, talk to a professional.

How Can Snoring be Controlled?

Snoring can be controlled using a variety of treatment options. The best one will be matched with the cause of the snoring. For instance, if obesity is causing the snoring, losing excess weight may solve the problem. Following are more treatment options for snoring:

  • Change sleeping position to the side – This is helpful if the tongue is falling back and restricting airflow.
  • Clearing nasal passages – This is appropriate if you have congestion. Taking a decongestant may work to reduce snoring.
  • Use a humidifier – If the air in the bedroom is too dry, this can dry out the mouth and throat and lead to snoring.
  • Wear an appliance – If your medical professional determines that some sort of physical problem is causing the snoring, they may prescribe a special anti-snore device to be worn at night.
  • Have surgery – In rare instances, when life is threatened, surgery to remove a blockage may be recommended as treatment for snoring.

Your dentist is Cincinnati is a valuable resource if you or your sleeping companion have a problem with snoring. Contact us today to book your appointment.

 

Common Myths About Dental Sealants

Even though permanent teeth are meant to last a lifetime, there are a lot of foods we eat, and things we do that can leave our teeth prone to deterioration and decay. The molars, or the teeth along the back of the jawline, are most at risk. Dental sealants are an effective solution to deter instances of decay. However, many myths get in the way of people seeking this form of dental treatment. Here is a look at some common myths associated with this protective treatment and the myths you should know.

Myth: Dental sealants are only suitable for pediatric patients.

Even though dental sealants are most often used on pediatric patients, this does not mean that the treatment is only fitting for children. Yes, children tend to need more protection from decay because they are not the best about brushing, flossing, and general oral hygiene. However, adults who are prone to decay can benefit just the same. Further, dental sealants can be a good way to protect teeth from stains.

Myth: Dental sealants aren’t that effective.

When applied appropriately, dental sealants are highly effective at thwarting issues with decay and stains. The material is so effective, that some research suggests sealants can reduce the risk of decay in molars by as much as 80 percent. Children between the ages of 6 and 11 who don’t have dental sealants may have as many as three times as many instances of decay in their molars.

Myth: Dental sealants contain compounds that aren’t good for you.

Dental sealers can contain different compounds depending on what product the dentist uses in their office. Almost all sealant products are plastic-based and do contain minimal amounts of BPA, but the amount is so fractional that it is 100 times less than what you would be exposed to just by handling a basic receipt or using certain cosmetics. Further, there are no known side effects involved with the treatment.

Reach Out to a Dentist in Cincinnati, OH About Dental Sealants

Overall, dental sealants are a valuable component in modern-day dentistry, and the advantages for all people are obvious. If you would like to know more about dental sealants and how they can help you protect your smile, reach out to us at Kemper Meadow Family Dentistry for an appointment.