How Diabetes Affects Your Dental Health

There is a higher risk in gum disease in people who have diabetes. It also weakens the ability to battle germs and bacteria that forms in your mouth. If you suffer from diabetes, it’s critically important that you let your dentist know of your condition, as the disease can have a negative impact on your oral health.

Most common dental problems associated with diabetes:

  • Increased tooth decay
  • Increase in severity of gum disease
  • Dry Mouth
  • Fungal Infections
  • Delayed healing

If you have been diagnosed with diabetes these are a few reasons to maintain routine checkups regularly with your dentist.


Dance Your Way To The Dentist

I’ve been a hygienist here at Evans Dental Group now for 5 years, and being a General Practice, we see a variety of patients from the young to the young at heart. I enjoy the different relationships that this brings, and especially enjoy introducing our youngest clients to the dental world for their first time. It can perhaps be the most important visit to the dentist they’ll ever have, since it sets the tone for how the dentist is perceived for the rest of their life. Think about it… do you remember your first visit? Or is it something you wish you could forget? Were you going for a checkup, or were you going because you or your parent thought something was wrong? How did that shape how you felt every visit after that?

Well, I don’t remember bit by bit what happened my first visit, but what I do remember is friendly faces, a dentist and hygienist that made me laugh, and getting to pick something out of a treasure box because I was a good girl. I have enjoyed the dentist ever since. No, I wasn’t particularly crazy about the polishing (it tickled!), and the fluoride was sooo strong, but that was okay because my overall experience was a pleasant one. Perhaps I owe a lot of credit to my mom as well. She made sure to teach myself and my siblings at home a regular home care regimen, and enforced it, even when we put up a fight. My mom would take us every six months and tried to tell us ahead of time about our appointment (usually a day or two before). This went a long way. Whether she realized it or not, she was instilling value in us for our oral health, just by helping to create healthy habits in a positive environment at home.

I wish that every child had a similar dental experience as I did, but sadly this isn’t the case. Did you know it’s been estimated that up to 80% of adults deal with some form of dental fear or anxiety? Unfortunately, in many of the cases I’ve encountered, the anxiety began as a young child and in some, way before they were born. I know that sounds a little puzzling, but it’s true. You see, your child’s dental experience actually begins with you. Did you know that our children watch everything we do? From the actual things we say, to our body language, to even what we don’t like or want to do? Have you ever noticed that many of the things that bother or scare us actually scare our children as well? Like giant roaches, snakes, or the sight of blood? Well, they do! Even the slightest uneasiness about a dental appointment speaks volumes to them.

If you’re one of those that suffer from dental anxiety yourself, or you have a child that suffers, then dental appointments can be daunting to say the least. I’ve put together a list of some tips to help make the most of your child’s dental appointment-whether it’s their first or tenth. Who knows? Maybe you’ll even pick up a few tips for yourself!

Dance your way to the dentist!
Okay maybe you don’t really have to dance, but be enthusiastic! Talk about how clean everything will feel they’re done, how comfy our chair is, or the “ride” that they can go on in the chair. You know your child and what gets them excited, so be creative.

Be honest about where you’re going.
If they feel like they can’t trust you, then they’re not likely to trust us when we tell them how careful we’ll be.

Help them relax.
Let them bring their favorite stuffed animal, doll, toy… well, you get the picture. If music helps put them at ease, then let them bring their mp3 player and head phones. Don’t forget our very own personal television in every operatory, specifically for their viewing and listening pleasure.

Lead by example.
Let them come with you to one of your hygiene visits. Bring someone they trust to sit with them and keep them entertained. This is also a great opportunity to introduce them to some of our equipment. Once they see that you have survived they’ll be more willing to give it a try themselves.

If at all possible, don’t let their first visit be due to a suspected issue or pain. Be proactive.
If something is in fact wrong, then their first impression is going to be affected by the fact that they have to have extra work done. Give them the opportunity to have a fun first impression and to be proud of their smile.

Monitor how other siblings, family members, or friends discuss their own dental visits.
We all know how others can be-especially older siblings. Be sure to debunk any myths or stories that may scare them, and try to prevent them in the future.

Be consistent.
If taking care of their mouth is all they can remember doing, then they’re more likely to continue it throughout their lifetime as well. You’re preparing them for their future! The American Dental Association recommends dental hygiene cleanings every six months to help prevent dental problems, as well as to detect issues when they are small. Did you know that many cavities can be prevented just through regular dental exams and cleanings? Our professional fluoride treatments can actually penetrate the softened, pre-cavity tooth structure and reverse the damage if caught early enough. How cool is that?

Even if you suffer from dental anxiety yourself-don’t let them know! Help break the cycle of anxiety in your family by providing a positive atmosphere for your child and giving them the opportunity to formulate their own opinion and experience.

By taking the time to work on these points and setting an example, you are empowering your child to take care of themselves and giving them the tools to take charge of their smile. If you ask me, that is definitely worth dancing your way to the dentist. We’ll even provide the music!

Brittni Ridgeway R.D.H

Sensitive Teeth?

Are your teeth sensitive to hot, cold, or sweets? If so, there are many reasons why that might be the case. Some reasons include: tooth decay, a cracked tooth, worn tooth enamel, worn fillings, exposed roots (gum recession), grinding or clenching, brushing too hard or using a hard bristled toothbrush, teeth whitening, or acidic foods.
Depending on the cause of the sensitivity, there are a few things that will help provide some relief.

  1. Try a desensitizing toothpaste such as Sensodyne or Colgate Sensitive Pro- Relief.
  2. Maintain good oral hygiene by brushing at least 2 times a dayand flossing at least once a day.
  3. Gently Brush using a soft-bristle toothbrush to protect gums.
  4. Use an over the counter fluoride rinse or a fluoride rinse prescribed by your dentist.
  5. Wear a night guard for grinding.
  6. Maintain regular dental office visits.

Corrie Ingham, RDH

Can brushing, flossing, cleanings and routine dental exams save your life?

The bacterial byproducts from periodontal disease enter the bloodstream and trigger the liver to make a protein. The protein can inflame the arteries and cause blood clots leading to heart attack and stroke. People with gum disease are twice as likely to suffer from coronary artery disease than people without gum disease. It can also worsen existing heart conditions. If its been more then six months since your last visit, please give our office a call. Don’t put off your dental visit any longer!

Ashley Surrency RDH

Thinking of declining your annual x-rays?

Thinking of declining your annual Bitewing x-rays for another visit? Well, think again! These x-rays are the Dentists only way of identifying the cavities that sneak up in between your teeth. Another benefit is to have a glimpse of the bone levels supporting your teeth and targeting problems early that are not necessarily seen in the mouth clinically or at home in the mirror. Habits such as sipping on soda, sweet tea, and other sugary drinks throughout the day not only cause an acid attack on the teeth, but, are also some of the things that lead to those sneaky cavities in between our patient’s teeth. Our office has recently switched to mainly using digital sensors to take these type and other types of x-rays. Cutting the already low rate of exposure to radiation in half! Your investment now in being regular with your visits and x-rays can catch cavities early on before you are in pain. Ways at home to prevent cavities in between your teeth are mainly to be mindful of your daily intake of sugary foods and drinks as well as to develop a daily flossing habit. As always, we are here for you if you need help or have any questions about preventing decay in your mouth!

Ashley Cryder R.D.H

New Treatment to Diminish the Appearance of White and Brown Spots on Teeth

There are two main causes for splotchy discolorations on our teeth: “less-than-perfect” oral hygiene while wearing braces and excessive fluoride ingestion as a child. Either way, these chalky white and brown spots can be embarrassing and affect our confidence. In the past, bleaching has been used to treat these discolorations. The goal was to lighten the parts of the tooth not affected by the spots in an attempt to blend the colors and make the spots less noticeable. In many demineralized cases, bleaching leaves the white areas even lighter and patients no happier with the appearance of their teeth than before bleaching. We have recently begun to use GC MI Paste Plus to help blend the light and dark spots with the natural color of the tooth. These treatments have been very successful. We completed the case below during seven in-office treatments with the patient applying MI Paste Plus at the end of her nightly oral hygiene routine. No fillings were done and she did not use any bleaching products. The in-office treatments take about thirty minutes and are completely painless. We are excited about this new treatment option to help our patients smile with more confidence!

Melissa M. Jordan D.M.D

Never had a cavity?

Never had a cavity? That’s awesome! But did you know that you can still get gingivitis, an infection in your gums and an early indicator of peridontitis which is gum disease? If your gums bleed when you brush or floss then you have gingivitis. How do you know if you have gingivitis or periodontitis? Only by visiting your dentist and dental hygienist who will use a special tool called a probe which measures for gum disease. Gum disease is known as a silent disease because symptoms are not always present. Early detection of gum disease can prevent bone loss and subsequent tooth loss. So if you think just because you have never had a cavity you are free and clear of visiting your dentist please think twice and have your teeth examined and cleaned twice a year by your dentist and dental hygienist.

Melanie Louks RDH