Custom Athletic Guards for Your Little Athlete

Now that school is back in session, sports are in full swing.  A custom athletic guard is the perfect way to protect your child’s unique smile.  Athletic guards are recommended for everyone who play contact sports such as baseball, football, soccer, ice hockey, and many others.

Mouth guards help avoid chipped or broken teeth, nerve damage to a tooth, or even tooth loss. Accidents can happen during any physical activity, so be sure to call the office to set up an appointment for anyone in your family that participates in contact sports.

We are offering custom-made athletic guards for only $19 through November 15, 2019.

Mouth Guards

Protect Your Teeth With the Right Mouth-Guard

An injury to the mouth can be a painful—and costly—experience. However, a well-made mouth-guard can help protect your mouth from broken or chipped teeth and save you from some preventable dental expenses.

 

Who Needs to Use a Mouth-guard?

Anyone—child, teen, or adult—who is involved in sports or recreational activities should consider using a mouth-guard. It’s not just contact sports that can result in damage to the teeth. In fact, cyclists, skateboarders and those who ride scooters and dirt bikes account for 44 % of dental injuries. Following close behind at 14% of dental injuries are those caused by contact sports like football, wrestling, boxing, hockey, and soccer. If you are involved in gymnastics or skating, you should also invest in a mouth-guard.

Sports-related accidents to the mouth can damage more than your teeth. They can also result in injuries to your lips, tongue, and even a broken jaw.

Persons who live with bruxism (grinding their teeth) also should use a mouth-guard to prevent tooth damage. One in five adults in the U.S. suffer from teeth grinding and jaw biting and nearly one-third of children deal with these conditions.

Mouth-guard Basics

Mouth-guards come in three forms: custom-made, boil-and-bite, and stock (pre-formed and ready to wear).  While stock mouth-guards seem like a quick and inexpensive solution, they rarely fit well and can interfere with talking and breathing. Boil-and-bite mouth-guards are moldable mouth protectors often sold at sporting goods stores that you boil and then place in your mouth to shape around your teeth. While these provide a better fit than stock mouth guards, the best fit comes from a custom mouth-guard your dentist prepares for you. These mouth-guards are made from an impression your dentist makes of your teeth with a special material which is then sent to a laboratory for a permanent mouth-guard that exactly you’re your mouth. Although a custom mouth-guard is more expensive than a boil-and-bite protector, it also provides the best fit and protection. And it can help you avoid costly injuries that can permanently damage your teeth and mouth.

The best mouth-guards are odorless, do not interfere with breathing, do not rip or tear, and fit tightly, but comfortably.

A mouth-guard generally covers your upper teeth which are most likely to take the brunt of an injury to the mouth. Your dentist may consider mouth-guards for your bottom teeth as well if you wear braces or have a dental appliance.

Taking care of your investment

As with any medical or health-related device, properly caring for it will greatly extend its life and usefulness.

Here are some tips for taking care of your mouth-guard:

  • Make sure to clean it after each time you use it. Simply rinse it in warm, soapy water or brush it with a toothbrush and toothpaste.
  • Keep it in a safe place and out of extreme heat and cold.
  • Use a mouth-guard storage container to keep your mouth-guard dry and prevent bacteria.
  • Bring it with you to you visit your dentist to have him or her check it for wear and tear and to thoroughly clean it.

 

 

 

Fun Facts for National Children’s Dental Health Month

February is one of our favorite months of the. year, because it is National Children’s Dental Health Month! It is especially important to us as we discuss the relevance of dental health with the children in our community.We visit over 4000 elementary students in Northwest Ohio and Southeast Michigan’s public and parochial schools. Last November our entire team toured Lott Industries and commissioned their team to put together the toothbrush packets we give to the children in the schools. Chris (in the photo above) was excited to be the “Head Man in Charge” of this special project!

Here are some dental facts about kids that may surprise you:

  • You would assume children’s teeth thousands of years ago were full of decay because of the lack to proper dental care. However, the American Dental Association thinks otherwise! They say tooth decay was likely not that common, because sugar was not a part of their diet.
  • Nearly half of 8 year olds have visible signs of decay on their teeth.
  • The good news is, cavities are preventable! Dental sealants added to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth prevent 80% of cavities!
  • Although bones or other parts of the body can heal and self-repair, teeth cannot. This is why preventative dental care and receiving proper dental work is crucial to protect your teeth from further damage.

Are Panoramic X-Rays Important to Your Oral Health? Yes, and it’s not just for a healthy smile.

When you get x-rays taken at a typical dental appointment, these dental x-rays give the dentist a close up of view of your teeth.  With panoramic x-rays, they capture the entire mouth in one image, allowing Drs. Nicholas and Baburek to see all of the teeth in your mouth and multiple bones of the head and neck.

Recommended every 3-5 years, a panoramic x-ray can diagnose more than regular dental concerns, like cavities or gum disease.  Because these x-rays show the bones of the head and neck, we can see other important issues that may be occurring in the surrounding tissue and jaw bones such as tumors, growths, or cancer.  Here are four reasons why panoramic x-rays are important to your overall health.

 

Panoramic X-rays Provides a Bigger Picture Than Normal X-rays

A panoramic x-ray allows us view your head, neck, and jaw, and how they work together as a whole, which means we can more easily identify abnormalities.

 

 

Panoramic X-rays is a Great Source for Early Detection

Because a panoramic x-ray offers a comprehensive view of your entire mouth, we can spot dental issues at their onset with the view of the entire mouth.  Because it often isn’t caught in its early stages, oral cancer has a high mortality rate.  With a panoramic x-ray, we can improve the likelihood of identifying oral cancer early on when it’s easiest to treat.

 

 

They can Discover Changes Overtime That May Need Addressed

Since panoramic x-rays are taken every 3-5 years, it allows us to see changes that occur in your mouth over time.

 

 

Panoramic X-rays are Useful for All Ages

Depending on age, we look at panoramic x-rays for different reasons.  For children and teenagers, it’s to determine the need for orthodontic care, along with looking at wisdom teeth.  With adults, panoramic x-rays spot early warning signs of oral cancer, identify TMJ issues, and view cysts, growths, and abnormalities in greater detail.

 

The Best and Worst Foods for Your Dental Health

It’s back to school time, which means lunch packing season has begun!  Your child’s oral health is extremely important, and to prevent cavities and maintain good oral health, your diet — what you eat and how often you eat — are important factors. The minute you eat certain foods, bacteria in the mouth convert sugars and carbohydrates from the foods you eat to acids.  Acids begin to attack the enamel on teeth, starting the decay process.

There are plenty of foods that can damage your teeth, but did you know that there are foods that actually promote good oral health? Although you’re already flossing and brushing regularly, incorporating the right foods into your diet can strengthen teeth and keep them in great shape. When feeding you and your family, consider these foods to consume and avoid when improving your oral health.

 

It’s a Party in Your Mouth With These Food Choices

The best food choices for the health of your mouth include cheeses, chicken or other meats, nuts, and milk. These foods are thought to protect tooth enamel by providing the calcium and phosphorus needed to redeposit tooth enamel after being removed by acids.  Dairy products are full of calcium and other minerals that promote oral wellness, but it’s important to eat the right dairy products. When choosing milk, always skip conventional products that are full of hormones, antibiotics, and other chemicals.

Other food choices include crunchy fruits such as apples and pears.  Because apples are high in water, eating them stimulates saliva production, which helps rid your mouth of bacteria and stray food particles. The fiber found in apples also stimulates the gums and acts as a mild astringent for your teeth, gently brightening them.  If you want to consume acidic foods, such as citrus fruits and tomatoes, it will not cause harm as long as they are eaten as part of a larger meal to minimize their acid.

Because they’re high in vitamins and minerals while being low in calories, leafy greens—like kale, spinach, Swiss chard and collard greens—are a fool-proof way to keep teeth healthy. The antioxidants and vitamins found in these powerful veggies combat cavities while also serving as a sneaky source of calcium to keep teeth strong.

 

Limit Yourself When Consuming These for Strong Oral Health

Poor food choices include candy — such as lollipops, hard candies, and mints — cookies, cakes, pies, breads, muffins, potato chips, pretzels, french fries, bananas, raisins, and other dried fruits. These foods contain large amounts of sugar and/or can stick to teeth, providing a fuel source for bacteria. In addition, cough drops should be used only when necessary as they, like sugary candy, contribute to tooth decay.

Limit your consumption of sugar-containing drinks, including soft drinks, lemonade, and coffee or tea with added sugar. Also, avoid day-long sipping of sugar-containing drinks — day-long sipping exposes your teeth to constant sugar and, in turn, constant decay-causing acids.

4 Important Factors When Caring for Your Child’s Teeth

Providing dental care for your child may start earlier then you thought.  Even though you can’t see your child’s teeth when they are babies, they actually begin to form in the second trimester.

Many parents have questions regarding their child’s dental care, such as how early should my child be flossing? How much toothpaste should my child be using? How old should they be before we see the children’s dentist?  Here are 4 items to consider when providing dental care for your child.

 

It’s Never Too Early to Start Dental Care

Even though you cannot see the teeth, protecting your baby’s gums before teething occurs will help lay the foundation to a healthy mouth.  Before they have teeth to brush, take a damp washcloth over your child’s gums to eliminate bacteria that may be harmful.

When you child’s teeth begin to grow in, brush them with an infant toothbrush using water and fluoride toothpaste that carries the American Dental Association’s (ADA) seal of acceptance.  Only a tiny amount is needed, about the size of a grain of rice.  There isn’t a magic age to start flossing your baby’s teeth, once the teeth begin to touch is the appropriate way of knowing it’s time.

 

Getting Your Child Not to Swallow Toothpaste

At approximately 2 years old, your child should begin spitting while brushing.  Most children are tempted to swallow the toothpaste rather than spitting it out because they are used to swallowing their food and drink, and most children’s toothpaste have an appealing taste to make brushing easier.   To avoid this, do not give your child water to swish the toothpaste before they spit, as this makes swallowing toothpaste more likely to occur.  We recommend supervising your child as they brush their teeth until they are about 8 years old to ensure they are brushing properly and to help prevent your child from swallowing toothpaste.

 

Avoid Too Much Bottle Time

Even if you are practicing ideal dental care for your child, what you are putting into their mouth plays a factor into their oral health.  Babies can develop tooth decay if you do not practice healthy feeding habits, such as giving your baby a bottle to sleep with at night.  While this may make your job as a parent easier, the sugars from the juice or milk remain on the baby’s teeth for hours.  When this happens, the sugars can eat away at the enamel, creating pitted, discolored front teeth and sometimes even cavities from a condition called bottle mouth.

Sucking on a bottle can also be damaging to a child’s teeth, where babies as young as 6 months are recommended to drink from a sippy cup.  To prevent your child from having their bottle too much bottle time, set specific times of the day where your child can have access to their bottle.

 

Planning Your Child’s First Trip to the Dentist

The American Dental Association recommends children visit a dentist by the time they turn 1 years old. During your child’s visit to the dentist, they will explain proper brushing and flossing techniques and conduct a modified exam that is catered to children.  If your child display any risk for cavities or other problems, the dentist may start applying topical fluoride even before all teeth come in.  Benefits of fluoride include harding the tooth enamel, and warding off common childhood oral diseases such as cavities.

We recommend booking appointments in advance on a consistent basis.  Request an  appointment by filling out the form here or call us at 419.475.3494.