Mouth Guards

Published on March 14, 2014 by

One of the most important and yet under-used tools available to help preserve your smile is the dental mouth guard.

Also known as occlusal guards, bite splints,bite planes and dental guards they serve a very practical purpose of protecting your teeth from damage caused by trauma.

There are two primary classes of mouth guards. Mouth guards worn during the day for sports, and other activities where external trauma to the head and face are a risk factor; and Night guards (which can also be worn during the day) but are primarily for protecting the teeth against damage caused by internal stress or grinding.

This condition known as bruxism is when extreme clenching of the teeth and jaw over time cause damage to the teeth. It can lead to fractures and other painful (and expensive) dental problems. Many people have the tools to cope during the day but will grind and clench at night in their sleep,hence the recommendation for a night guard.

There are many products available to consumers, and while using something is better than nothing, the inferior products you can purchase in a retail location, often don’t stand up to the forces involved.

Having a custom guard fabricated using molds of your teeth by a dental professional is really the better way to go. They will always fit better, feel better, last longer and protect more thoroughly.

We (and every dentist we know) have had patients come in with injuries sustained during sports while wearing a pre-fab or boil and bite mouth guard.

Consider having yours done, consult with your dentists, or call us if you have any questions.

 

modelguard

Quitting Tobacco

Published on August 28, 2013 by

Save your own life: Quit tobacco

By quitting:

  • Within weeks of quitting circulation improves, your immune system gets a boost making it easier to fight off colds & flu. Increased oxygen in the body makes it less likely you will headaches and all physical activities become easier.
  • The risk of heart disease, stroke, cancers and lung diseases drops significantly. Breathing is easier, though the immediate effect is good, the greater lung capacity can make an enormous difference later in life.
  • Your children will be less likely to use tobacco.
  • After quitting your risk for gum disease drops. You are less likely to have chronic bad breath, nicotine stained teeth, and premature loss of teeth due to tobacco.
  • Half of all long term smokers die from smoking related diseases such as heart disease, lung cancer, chronic bronchitis, etc.  Quitting can add years of (better quality) life to your life span.
  • Your skin and body will look younger. Stopping now can slow facial aging and delay the appearance of wrinkles. The sallow lined “leather faced” look of some long term tobacco users can be lessened and even reversed for a more beautiful complexion.
  • Passive smoking or second hand smoke poses a very real danger to the loved ones in any smokers’ life. Children of smokers are twice as likely to have pneumonia croup, bronchitis, ear infections, asthma, and wheezing, than those who live with non-smokers.
  • The financial advantages are substantial as well. With the current prices, each of cigarettes costs between 8 and 10 dollars each the savings alone is nearly three hundred dollars a month. Can reach over three thousand dollars in a year. Think about what that money could be used for.

 

Tips to help you quit:

 

  • Drink water to flush toxins from your body
  • Keep your hands busy with something you like to do.
  • Change any routines that involve smoking or tobacco products.
  • If you have tried and failed to quit before think about what helped and what didn’t work.
  • Identify what triggers the urge to smoke and try to avoid the trigger or replace the tobacco with something else like an activity or chewing sugar free gum.
  • Choose a quit date a little ways away and post it prominently where you can see it often, try making small changes as you lead up to it, cutting down and changing behavior, so that the last day you smoke is not a total shock to you system.
  • Talk to a health care provider abut medications or other aids you can use to help you quit.
  • Identify the reasons you want to quit. Write them down and refer to them often.
  • Build a support system: friends, family, co-workers,online support groups, in person support groups, CT quitline, BecomeAnEx.org. Tell them your plans and that you want their support in quitting.

 

Try: 1-800 QUITNOW or register at www.quitnow.net/connecticut  for help with your quit plan

Connecticut Department of Health: www.ct.gov/dph/tobacco has information on group and individual programs in your area.

 

 

Dry Mouth

Published on July 26, 2013 by

At-Home Care for Dry Mouth

For Patients with chronic dry mouth stemming from a variety of causes.

Also recommended for use during and after radiation treatments.

  • Brush teeth with prescription fluoride toothpaste ( do not rinse afterwards). At night brush ½ hour before bedtime. Try not to rinse mouth or drink fluids after this.
  • Apply MI paste plus 3 to 4 times a day and directly before going to bed.
  • Rinse with Caphosol®, Netrasol®, or plain water with baking soda rinse (1 tsp. baking soda in 8 oz. water) after meals and snacks. Mouthwash should be alcohol free.
  • Chew gum containing xylitol throughout the day. A piece of chewing gum in the mouth can stimulate salivary flow from remaining functional glands in case of TMJD
  • Brush teeth and tongue with powered (sonic) toothbrush with gentle pressure.
  • Use a prescription sialogogue. (pilocarpine or Cevimeline) up to 3 to 4 times per day. Also during radiation treatments take a tablet/capsule 1 hour prior to treatment.
  • Low fluoride containing rinse after meals. (Especially after acidic meals)
  • Post-Radiation- break vitamin E capsules in mouth, swish and spit up to three times a day.
  • Keep a humidifier in the room set at 50% at night.
  • Use other sugar/alcohol free oral comforting (over the counter) agents such as Biotene®, or Oasis® if relief is perceived.
  • Visit the dentists every three months for a complete exam, cleaning and topical fluoride treatments.
  • Restore teeth as soon as carious lesions appear
  • Frequent large sipping or drinking of water does not help relieve dryness of the oral cavity. Try taking small sips to wet the oral mucosa which gives the sensation of wetness in the gums and mouth but does not was away salivary proteins.