4 Dental Tips for a Fun and Healthy Halloween

Halloween dental tips Knoxville dentist

Kids love Halloween and Trick or Treating and that means that there will be a lot of sugary treats coming their way. We have put together a few tips for you that will help them celebrate the holiday without hurting their smiles.

Sort Their Candy with Them

Keep your kids safe by having them not eat anything before they come home. Dump out the candy and go through it together, taking out anything that may not be safe.

Let your kids select their favorite treats and set them aside. The rest may not look as appealing once that is done.

Offer to Swap Out Candy for Other Types of Treats

You can give your kids incentives to give up the remaining, non-favorite candy by offering to swap it for other things they may want more, like a toy, coloring book, or movie. This works easily as long as what you offer is something they value more than the candy.

Inspire Them to Keep Their Teeth Clean

Give them a new fun tooth brush every Halloween to help them keep their smile healthy. Make it a tradition.  Another option is to include sugarless gum with their treats as it will help keep their teeth clean.

Designate Treat Times

When kids eat candy all day, their teeth are constantly marinating in sugar. Give your kids special times to eat their treats. This will give them something to look forward to and and can be timed shortly before they brush their teeth as well.

Celebrating can be both healthy and fun when you try these tips. But, if your teeth are feeling a little spooky you might want to give us a call. (865) 922-1613

Knoxville, TN

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4 Signs the Bacteria in Your Mouth are Out of Control

mouth bacteria, dentist in Knoxville

Your mouth may be home to billions of bacteria, but when they are in balance there is nothing to worry about. It’s when they get out of control that your teeth and health can be at risk.

While there may be no symptoms that are obvious, sure signs that your mouth bacteria are having too much fun include:

Bad Breath: While the smell of your breath can change for simple reasons like the last thing you ate or your mouth being dry, it can also be a sign of digestive problems or unruly germy guys in your mouth. Try cleaning your tongue with a tongue scraper or a plastic picnic knife and be sure to brush it daily. If this doesn’t help, you may want to give us a call.

Cavities: Many people don’t realize that cavities are caused by bacteria, not sugar. The sugar feeds the bacteria and they use it to create acids that eat away at your teeth. Be sure to brush and floss daily and get regular dental exams to prevent and catch cavities early.

Bleeding Gums: Another byproduct of bacteria is tartar that eventually hardens and becomes calculus. This creates nooks and crannies where bacteria can hide and build colonies, resulting in inflammation and infection. This condition is what is referred to as periodontal or gum disease and bleeding gums is one of the symptoms, although you can have it with no symptoms at all. Getting a professional teeth cleaning at recommended intervals is important for preventing this disease which can cause tooth loss and impact your overall health.

Toothaches: One of the most common causes of a toothache is a nerve that has died and become infected. If you have a tooth that hurts, especially if it throbs, is sensitive to heat or swollen, it is important to see your dentist right away. When tooth infections get out of control they can get into your bloodstream and be dangerous for your health.

Our goal is to help you keep the germs in your mouth in balance so that you can continue to enjoy a healthy smile and protect your overall health.

If you are looking for a dentist in the Knoxville area, we would love to meet you. Just call (865) 922-1613 to schedule an appointment.

Why are My Gums Receding?

smiling woman with receding gums

Gum recession happens over time, so you may not notice it at first. But, if it seems like your gums are getting shorter or your teeth are growing longer, it is important to see your dentist.   Quick action can prevent long term problems like tooth loss and even possible gum surgeries.

Gums protect and insulate your teeth. When they recede, new areas of teeth become exposed at their thinnest point where the nerve of the tooth is not far from the surface. This can lead to sensitivity, pain, and root cavities that threaten the life of your tooth.

There are several reasons that you may be experiencing gum recession.  The most common ones are:

Periodontal Gum Disease – this bacterial infection damages and eats away at the gums and bone that support your teeth.  It is the number one cause of tooth loss and is also linked as a potential causative factor for major conditions like diabetes, heart disease, Alzheimer’s, and cancer.

Tobacco Use – smoking or chewing tobacco puts your gums in direct contact with tobacco and the toxins and chemicals it contains.

Clenching or Grinding Your Teeth (Bruxism) –  your teeth flex back and forth when under the heavy pressure caused by grinding and this leads to both tooth and gum damage.

Brushing Too Hard – we are taught that scrubbing things gets them cleaner, but when it comes to your teeth and gums a gentle approach is better.  Using a soft bristled brush and a light touch will keep your mouth healthy.

Misaligned Teeth – when teeth do not line up properly there are areas of your mouth that have to withstand extra pressure and stress.  This can cause receding gums, tooth damage, and make you more susceptible to gum disease.

Irritation – if dental appliances, mouth jewelry, or partial dentures rub against your gums they can cause permanent damage over time.

Lack of Dental Care – teeth and gums that are not cared for properly are more likely to become diseased or damaged.  Be sure to brush and floss daily and see your dentist and hygienist at least twice a year.

Receding gums are not to be taken lightly.  If you have any concerns about changes in your gums or are looking for a new dentist in the Knoxville area, we would love to help.  

Call (865) 922-1613 to schedule an appointment. Knoxville TN

We promise to take great care of you!

Photo courtesy Edward Cisneros

5 Things You Should Stop Believing about Cavities

tooth cavities cavityYou Will Know When You Have a Cavity: Cavities usually don’t hurt until they are deep enough to get to the nerve of your tooth.  Other obvious signs are dark spots or crumbling teeth.  In most cases, though, you will not be aware of a cavity until it gets serious.

Kids Get More Cavities than Adults: Children who receive regular dental care usually have their teeth protected with sealants and fluoride treatments.  While, older adults often develop cavities when their gums recede, exposing new soft areas of teeth to potential harm.

If Your Tooth is Sensitive, You Have a Cavity: There are several many potential causes of tooth sensitivity, including damage to the tooth’s nerve, gum recession, tooth grinding, and broken or cracked fillings.

Aspirin Next to a Tooth Will Help a Toothache: Aspirin needs to be swallowed and enter your bloodstream to be effective.  You are better off taking aspirin the same as you would for a headache.

Gaps in Teeth Lead to Cavities: Areas with more space are easier to clean and less likely to trap food than tighter areas. Cleaner teeth means less of a chance for cavities.  It is the tight spaces between teeth that have a higher risk.

If you are looking for a new dentist in the Knoxville TN are, we would love the opportunity to welcome you into our dental family.

865.922.1613 Knoxville TN

 

Why Real Men Take Care of Their Teeth

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Studies show that men are less likely to go to the dentist on a regular basis or focus on preventive care than women. That is, unless their wives talk them into it.

But, we believe men should be taking care of their teeth too, especially if they don’t like being in the dental chair.

Regular check ups and professional teeth cleaning can help prevent most dental problems, which means fewer toothaches, emergencies, and expensive treatment plans.

Here is what one man’s man has to say about taking care of his teeth.

If you don’t have a dentist you love, give us a call. Our office is a no judgement zone and we promise to take great care of you.

Ron Smith, DDS   865.962.1613

The Cure for Loose Dentures

implant supported dentures overdentures Knoxville

When someone has had dentures for a long time, they often find that their dentures start to feel loose and not fit as well. This is because the constant pressure of the dentures wears down the bone and gum tissue used to support them. When this happens people may experience:

  • Discomfort, pain, or sore spots
  • Being afraid their dentures will fall out in public
  • The appearance of aging faster
  • Inability to chew well and absorb nutrition from food
  • Losing confidence and becoming reclusive
  • Having to avoid favorite foods like steak, apples, or corn on the cob

One of our greatest joys is helping denture wearers resolve these issues that can challenge them physically, mentally, and emotionally.  

The solution that we provide is supporting dentures with dental implants. These implants are like man made roots that keep the dentures anchored and secure. The dentures are made so that they can simply snap over the implants and are easy to put in and take out.

The process for putting in implants and creating new dentures is generally easy to tolerate, but we also offer oral sedation dentistry to help our patients who want to avoid feeling nervous. No needles or IV’s are involved and they will feel relaxed and comfortable during treatment.

 

Dental implants are also a great option for people who are getting dentures for the first time. Starting with snap on dentures can prevent their ever having to experience the issues related to ill-fitting dentures.

With implant supported dentures, our patients can smile, eat, laugh, and sing with confidence again. And, that makes us smile too!

If you would like to find out if implant supported dentures are for you, call for a consultation: (865) 922-1613  Knoxville, TN

The Hidden Risks of Postponing Dental Care

toothache

Hospital emergency rooms around the country are reporting higher numbers of patients coming in with dental emergencies.  Most of these adults and children have postponed dental care to save money, but now have very large emergency room bills.

This is just one example of why it is important to stay up to date with your dental care. Postponing regular check ups, professional cleanings, or recommended dental treatment  can result in:

  • Inconvenient and expensive emergency care
  • More severe damage to your teeth, resulting in higher cost and more time in the dental chair
  • Losing a tooth that could have been easily saved
  • More pain
  • Having to take time off work or miss special events
  • An unattractive smile that can impact your confidence and self-esteem
  • Dangerous dental infections that can get into your blood stream
  • Being angry or upset with yourself for letting things go
  • Periodontal disease – the number one cause of tooth loss that is also linked to life threatening conditions like heart disease, diabetes, cancer, Alzheimer’s and more

So, while postponing going to the dentist may seem like the easy way out, the cost is high in the end. Don’t make things harder on yourself by postponing dental care. If you have not been in to see a dentist within the last 6 months or have pending treatment that has been recommended, the time to call and schedule a dental appointment is NOW.

And, if you need a dentist in the Knoxville area, we would love to help. We offer oral sedation dentistry for patients who don’t enjoy dental visits or want to get a lot of treatment completed in one visit. Our goal is to make your dental visits as easy as possible and we promise to take great care of you. 

Call (865) 922-1613   – Knoxville TN