Genes and your teeth

 teeth health smile dentistYour genetic makeup means that you could have similar dental problems to your parents. If they were prone to tooth decay, gum disease or had crowded teeth, you may be at risk too.

Key takeaways

– Oral health and size of teeth are influenced by genetics

– Improve your oral health by brushing, flossing and eating healthily

– See your dentist for regular checkups

People with poor immune systems or a family history of dental problems should discuss this with their dentist.

“Don’t use your genetic makeup as an excuse to not take care of your smile.”


Antibacterial mouthwash may hurt health

teeth health dentist smileIf you brush your teeth with antibacterial toothpaste, you are helping keep teeth healthy. However, antibacterial mouthwash is a different story. Research by Colgate showed that toothpaste containing triclosan was beneficial to teeth. However, concerns have been raised about triclosan’s safety in mouthwash.

Scientists say that antibacterial mouthwash may interfere with how the body converts nitrates in our saliva which causes inflammation in the body over time. Your tongue is especially sensitive to antibacterials, and mouthwash containing triclosan can kill the good bacteria on the tongue.

Key takeaways

– Eat plenty of leafy green vegetables and beets, which help increase the nitrate level in saliva.

– Avoid antibacterial mouthwash and only brush your teeth (not your tongue) with antibacterial toothpaste

– Speak to your dentist about choosing the right mouthwash for your oral care.

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How To Protect Your Teeth With Your Diet

teeth, health, smile, dentistSugary and acidic foods cause damage to teeth by creating conditions which enable bacteria to thrive. There are, however, foods which can help to protect the teeth.

– Teeth-friendly foods include: almonds, salmon, sardines, pomegranates, apples, pears, celery, leafy greens, dairy foods and tea. Drinking water and chewing sugar-free gum can also help to increase saliva in the mouth.

– Brushing and flossing regularly will also help to get rid of bacteria.

– Ensure that you visit your dentist regularly for check-ups.

Healthy food lacks sugar and highly acidic content, both of which serve as food for harmful bacteria Read the full story here:

Prescriptions for pain

teeth health smile dentistHaving your wisdom teeth removed requires some pain relief afterwards but it pays to talk to your dentist about what they plan to prescribe.

Key takeaways

– Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen are non addictive

– Drugs containing opioids can be addictive

– Young people are particularly prone to developing addiction to opioids

If you are concerned about pain relief for your child you should discuss options with your dentist beforehand.

“They’re getting their first taste of the drug from a doctor or dentist, and that increases the likelihood they would use it recreationally.”

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Why Mucus Could Be Good For Our Teeth

teeth health dentist smileRecent studies suggest that mucus found naturally in the body could help to protect the teeth from cavities, by providing a barrier to the harmful bacteria. Research is being carried out into the production of synthetic mucus which could, in time, be added to toothpastes to protect the teeth.

Limiting the amount of bacteria in the mouth will also help to keep your teeth healthy.

– Brush and floss regularly to remove food debris.

– Avoid sugary foods and drinks.

– Visit your dentist regularly for check-ups.

Mucus prevents the bacteria itself from attaching to teeth.

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Gum disease and cirrhosis

teeth, health, smile,dentistSevere gum disease (periodontitis) and poor oral health are common in patients who have liver cirrhosis. Now studies are suggesting that severe gum disease can increase the risk of death in patients who have liver disease. Studies also suggest that gum disease has a negative effect on the course of other health conditions such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes and respiratory diseases.

Key takeaways:

– Between 1 and 2% of deaths in Europe are due to cirrhosis

– 35% of adults have gum disease

– More studies are needed to see if better gum care can help people with cirrhosis and other conditions

Great teeth and a beautiful smile are important but don’t forget to see a dentist regularly so that they can check the condition of your gums too.

Periodontitis is a bacterially induced inflammatory disease that affects the supporting tissues of the teeth“.

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How to Avoid Common Oral Health Problems

teeth health smile dentistWhile regular visits to the dentist can ensure a white smile, there are many additional habits that should always be embraced. Some of these tricks are common knowledge while others could come as a bit of a surprise. What do the experts have to say and what benefits are offered by following this advice? Let’s take a look at three top tips.

– It is better to drink water during a workout as opposed to sports drinks. These drinks contain massive amounts of sugar.

– Some research suggests that drinking excessive amounts of sparkling water may harm your teeth.

– It is best to avoid hard candies and even ice, as these can chip tooth enamel over time.

“Anything you do that increases the amount of sugar or acid in your mouth (e.g. slurping down sugary sodas) or dries your mouth out (e.g. snoring) has the potential to cause damage to your teeth.”

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White Patches in Your Mouth: Leukoplakia

teeth health smile dentistLeukoplakia is a condition associated with white patches found on various portions of the mucous membranes within the mouth. Although these areas are normally painless, they can still impact a smile and it is a good idea to see a dentist if the condition does not improve or if the lesions persist.

While this illness does not impact the teeth directly, it could still be a result of poor oral hygiene or an additional underlying disorder. Some of the most prevalent symptoms include:

– Unexplained patches that range from white to grey in colour.

– These lesions can be found on the lining of the cheeks, around the gums or on the surface of the tongue.

– There can also be times when these patches will crack; resulting in a painful condition.

Leukoplakia is a condition that causes thick, plaque-like white patches on the tongue, gums, and lining of the mouth.”

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Laser Technology to Improve Dental Treatment

teeth health smile dentistAny pain or discomfort you may have experienced while being treated by your dentist will soon be a thing of the past. Painkilling injections and drilling into the teeth is being replaced by laser technology. This happy news comes from an online article by Lisa Fields in which she describes the new laser treatments for dental problems that are now being introduced.

In the coming years it is expected that dentists will be using lasers for:

– Treating cavities

– Root canal work

– Strengthening implants

Laser treatment is quick and painless and largely avoids the need for drilling and other invasive procedures. As Ms. Fields’ article states “dental procedures are becoming kinder and gentler” but she also points out that it is better to avoid the dentist’s office when possible and taking proper care of your teeth is the best way of doing this. So the next time you need dental work done you can relax and smile if your dentist uses the new laser technology.

The full article about the new laser technology can be read at



Imagining Dental Treatments Without Modern Conveniences

teeth health smile dentistSome of us associate a dentist with pain and apprehension. However, let us now imagine that we required medical treatment 13,000 years ago. How would ancient man maintain a healthy set of teeth and attractive (or at the very least functional) smile? These questions may have been answered. A team of researchers has discovered a well-preserved set of teeth that appear to have been medicinally modified.

What key takeaway points did they highlight and how may these impact our understanding of the history of dentistry?

– Small traces of bitumen could hint that the individual was trying to stem the effects of an infection.

– Plant fibres may indicate an early method of treating cavities.

– It is still not known whether these modifications were due to medicinal or ritualistic practices.

“…and using their microscopes, they identified the fibers inside the teeth as probably being put there while the caveperson was still alive.”

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