September 18, 2012
“They’re just baby teeth. . .”
SIGH. . . I hear this every week in practice. In reality, they really are more than just baby teeth. Primary teeth serve several important purposes. The primary teeth hold space for the permanent teeth. If a baby tooth is lost prematurely, the permanent tooth can get trapped, leading to further dental problems and pain. Baby teeth also aid in chewing and speech.
It is extremely important to develop good oral hygiene habits when children are very young. Brushing twice a day is a necessary staple to develop in every child. Children should learn at an early age how to floss to instill good habits that will benefit them greatly in their teen and adult years. Even babies and toddlers should have their teeth brushed with a damp washcloth or gauze. Every child should be monitored by an adult during brushing until that child is at least six years old.
It is a good idea to begin seeing a dentist on a regular basis. Regular checkups can prevent unnecessary dental pain. Preventative dentistry is key. It is cheaper to prevent decay than it is to repair it!! Never put your baby to bed with a sippy cup containing anything but water. Fruit juices, kool-aid, soda, and even milk contain sugar that will cause severe decay if left in contact on your child’s teeth throughout the night. Limit intake of sticky, sugary snacks between meals. Use toothpaste containing fluoride if your child is over two years of age. Fluoride makes your teeth less prone to acid that starts decay. It can also re-harden small areas where a tiny cavity may be forming.
These simple tips can be the beginning of a beautiful smile and a lifetime of great dental checkups!
Dr. Ashley Brewer
August 13, 2012
Do you brush twice a day? Dentists always recommend brushing after every meal or right before bed? Well let’s pose this question, if you could only brush one time during the day, which would you choose? There usually comes a time when you miss one or the other. So, which one is most beneficial to the health of your teeth? Morning, after lunch, or right before bed? The immediate answer from most of my patients would be in the morning simply due to ‘morning breath’, but I would say that brushing right before bedtime is the most important.
Here is just a simple reason why. During the day, your mouth is constantly moving by talking to your friends or coworkers. This movement with your mouth and tongue helps to keep saliva production up to speed to aid in removing harmful bacteria off your teeth. Throughout the day you eat or drink things with sugar and the bacteria attaches to your teeth. At night, this bacteria is still there and your mouth is much less active. Therefore saliva production is down which means your teeth dry out and don't have a protective layer. Just the lack of movement of your lips and tongue while sleeping gives decay more of an opportunity to do its damage. Now I am not saying everyone should walk around with bad breath and only brush at night. This is only a ‘what if’ scenario. What I am saying is that brushing at night is more important than when you wake up simply to remove all the bacteria in your mouth that you have gathered throughout the day. Also, don’t forget to brush your tongue.
Stop by Higginbotham Family Dental and let us check your brushing and give you a new toothbrush and toothpaste so that you will be ready to brush anytime night or day.
Dr. Keith Jones
July 10, 2012
I can’t tell you how many times have I walked into an operatory and heard a patient say, “I don’t like the dentist.” I try not to take that too personally. After all, they haven’t even met me yet! It is estimated that as many as 75% of US adults and children experience some degree of dental fear, from mild to severe. Patients state their dental fear began after a traumatic, difficult, and or painful dental experience. Also the way the last dentist treated them is a major factor of their fear. Most people assume that dentists have perfect teeth and have always been a member of the ‘no cavity club’. Well, that’s not the case for this dentist. I have had plenty of cavities that needed fillings and I’ve also had a few crowns. I’ve even had an emergency extraction that wasn’t a pleasant experience at all. This has helped me to gain a better understanding on how to treat patients with sympathy and on a personal level.
Here at Higginbotham Family Dental we strive to treat each patient with a sincere and genuine experience. We offer many options to help with your dental phobia such as nitrous oxide gas, conscious sedation dentistry, and simply taking our time to make you feel as comfortable as possible. We also have new neck pillows, soft blankets, and noise drowning headphones connected to Pandora so you can listen to your favorite music.
My goal is to change the negative perception of the dentist one patient at a time. I’d love to change your mind!
Dr. Keith Jones