Crystal Lake, IL Dentist
77 E. Crystal Lake Avenue
Crystal Lake, IL 60014

Find answers and other helpful dental topics in our digital library.

Archive:

Tags

This summer, stay hydrated and healthy. But think carefully when you choose your beverage – some drinks can increase your risk of tooth decay.

  1. Drink water

    Keep your mouth moist by drinking water throughout the day. This helps wash away plaque-causing bacteria and can even improve your breath.

  2. Choose tap

    Fluoridated tap water strengthens your enamel, making your teeth more resistant to decay.

  3. Skip the bubbles

    The acid in carbonated drinks can wear down your enamel.

  4. Use a straw

    If you drink acidic beverages, reduce their contact with your teeth by using a straw and finishing the drink quickly, instead of sipping over a long period of time.

  5. Try tea

    Tea contains compounds that suppress bacteria, slowing down tooth decay and gum disease. Just remember: Don’t add sugar!

For starters, there are concerns about the abrasiveness of charcoal, which some say could damage enamel if used regularly. Others argue that charcoal isn’t specifically bad for teeth, it simply won’t do much for your smile in the longterm since the active ingredient isn't in contact with the tooth surface for enough time to have a meaningful whitening effect. Still, charcoal tooth treatments have found plenty of proponents who say that a regular coating of the stuff whitens their teeth and kills off bad breath-causing bacteria.  The reality, as it so often is, may be somewhere in the middle.

What’s the difference between removing surface stains and whitening? Surface stains, come from the usual suspects: coffee, red wine, tobacco, and dark colored foods and drinks. They live on the enamel layer and can generally be removed with toothpastes or surface whitening treatments. Deeper stains are dark coloring that comes from within the tooth, sometimes as a result of trauma, weak enamel, certain types of medication, and even overuse of fluoride. Think of these as the underlying color of your teeth; no matter how dedicated you are to whitening the surface, a major lightening of tooth color can only come from bleaching treatments that penetrate below the outer surface of teeth.  

While charcoal can lift away plaque and food particles that lead to bad breath, the effect won’t be much more dramatic than what you’d get with any other toothpaste. Though there has been very little study on the abrasive effects of charcoal on teeth, most activated charcoal toothpastes feature abrasives like baking soda which can wear at teeth; especially those already prone to sensitivity. As a consequence we advise erring on the side of caution and brushing the paste on very gently to avoid wearing down the surface enamel, which can make teeth more prone to staining in the long run.

Speaking of enamel, don’t go throwing out your regular toothpaste just yet. Activated charcoal can be used as a supplement to brushing with regular toothpaste for people who are seeking a whiter smile, but it cannot be used in place of it.  Regular toothpaste gives us the fluoride we need to fight dental decay so it’s necessary to keep it as part of a daily regimen.

April 10, 2019
Category: ISDS
Tags: Capital Conference  

Doctor Osmanski attended the Illinois State Dental Society Capital Conference in Springfield this month.  He is the McHenry County Dental Political Action Committee Director.

This event gives the latest information about state and federal legislative, regulatory and political issues affecting dentistry today. He was able to gain insight from policymakers about recent developments in health care legislation and regulation, as well as influence legislative and regulatory efforts at the Illinois State Capitol.

Strawberries, Apples, Celery, Onions, Sesame Seeds, Yoghurt, Cheese, Carrots, Salmon and Gum.  

10. Chewing gum

Whether or not this qualifies as food is debatable, and we would strongly advise against swallowing it. However, as many advertisements promise, chewing gum is indeed good for your teeth, provided it is sugar free. This is because chewing speeds up saliva production, which in turn helps rinse away harmful acids more effectively. As an added bonus, it makes your breath smell better.

9. Salmon

Vitamin D is an essential vitamin for good oral health, as it effectively allows your body to better absorb calcium and put it to good use throughout your body. Salmon is packed full of both Vitamin D and calcium, making it an all-round superfood for helping to maintain healthy teeth and gums. 

8. Carrots

Carrots have been hailed a cavity fighting vegetable, as munching on sticks of crunchy, raw carrot acts as a natural toothbrush. The chewing action massages your gums, and this bright vegetable is high in plaque-attacking keratin as well as  Vitamin A, which is crucial for strengthening delicate tooth enamel. All-in-all it’s a good choice for an in-between-meal snack.

7. Cheese

Cheese is great for your teeth. Not only does it have high levels of phosphate and calcium, which naturally strengthen teeth and bones, but it also helps balance the pH level in your mouth, which means less harmful acid, more cleansing saliva and fewer cavities.

6. Yoghurt

Unsweetened natural yoghurt makes a great healthy breakfast or snack. For the benefit of your teeth, yoghurt contains both casein and calcium, which strengthen enamel and help repair it if it happens to be damaged.

5. Sesame seeds

Eating sesame seeds on their own, or baked into bread will help you in two ways. First of all, as you chew, they help to scrub plaque from your teeth and, secondly, they’re high in calcium. Just make sure any seeds caught between your teeth are removed as soon as possible.

4. Onions

Raw onion is incredibly healthy for you, and as an added bonus, the antibacterial sulphur compounds contained in an onion will kill the harmful bacteria on your teeth. But you might want to chew gum afterwards!

3. Celery

Celery gives your teeth a great workout. As you chew celery, it helps to clean your teeth and massages your gums in the process, while all that chewing will also produce plenty of saliva to neutralise bacteria.

2. Apples

Apples are highly acidic and you could be forgiven for thinking that would weaken the enamel on your teeth. However, the natural sugars contained within apples actually help neutralise harmful acids in the mouth. As well as this, chewing apples is another good mouth workout for saliva production, and they’re packed with vitamins to keep your gums healthy.

1. Strawberries

Strawberries are sweet, acidic and tend to stain things red, so how can they possibly be good for your teeth? Strawberries contain malic acid, which is actually a good natural whitener for enamel – eating strawberries will actually help keep your teeth free of stains. Just be mindful that strawberry seeds can get stuck between your teeth, so make sure you floss after eating them.

Brushing your teeth twice a day for at least two minutes may lower the risk of cardiovascular diseases, a new study suggests.

Previous studies have found a link between heart disease and periodontal disease -- a condition marked by gum infection, gum inflammation and tooth damage.

The new study, scheduled for presentation Saturday at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions meeting in Chicago, looked at whether a person's tooth-brushing habits were associated with their risk of having or dying from a heart attack, heart failure or stroke.  

Researchers asked 682 people about their tooth-brushing behavior. After adjusting for various factors, they found that those who said they brushed less than twice a day for less than two minutes had a three-fold increased heart risk, compared to those who said they brushed at least twice a day for at least two minutes.

The study's lead researcher said the findings suggest poor oral health, based on daily teeth-brushing behavior, is associated with poorer heart health. It's possible that longer tooth brushing might reduce this risk, but the new study was not designed to prove cause-and-effect. 

The science supports a potential connection between dental health and heart health. Gum disease is one of the diseases where the body may be in a sort of continual state of inflammation, and this seems to be a very powerful predictor of cardiovascular disease.  

A separate study, published last month in the journal Hypertension, found that gum disease appears to worsen blood pressure and interferes with medications to treat hypertension.

Poor dental health also poses a risk to people with heart valve problems because we know certain heart valve infections can be associated with poor oral health.

This latest research is a good reminder that the mouth is an important part of a person's entire health and simple, daily behaviors that improve health are incredibly important.

The American Dental Association recommends brushing your teeth twice a day for two minutes with fluoride toothpaste.  It's a low-risk, low-cost option that we know has other benefits even beyond the scope of what this study is trying to investigate.  





This website includes materials that are protected by copyright, or other proprietary rights. Transmission or reproduction of protected items beyond that allowed by fair use, as defined in the copyright laws, requires the written permission of the copyright owners.