Month: August 2014

Smoking impacts your oral health

Its common knowledge that smoking is terrible for your overall health. When you really think about it, it’s your oral health that gets affected first. After all, it’s the first part of your body that the smoke, tar, and all those other chemicals hit first.

According to the American Cancer Society, the most serious illness caused by smoking that is directly related to dental health is oral cancer. Studies have shown that over 90% of people who have any form of oral cancer are smokers, and that people who smoke are six times more likely to contract the disease than non-smokers.

Smoking also affects the gums, and can cause periodontal disease. It starts out as gum discoloration, and the more tar particles that build up in your gum tissue, the more likely you will get periodontal disease. Periodontal disease can lead to a whole array of dental issues such as loose teeth and extractions. 

Eventually, your gums will become inflamed, which causes the bones underneath to become infected. Tooth deterioration and loss are inevitable for heavy smokers.

Another important effect to consider is the inevitable yellowing of the teeth and the constant cigarette breath. Those two factors alone are aesthetically unpleasant, not to mention that smoking increases a build up or tartar and plaque around the teeth. 

In general, no form of tobacco is safe. It doesn’t matter whether you’re chewing, smoking, or inhaling your tobacco; if your mouth is in regular contact with tobacco, it is dangerous and can cause cancer.  The most effective way to prevent oral cancer is to not smoke or use tobacco.

While it is difficult for most smokers to quit, it is a personal achievement that will reward you for a long time to come.  Not only will you live a longer, happier life, but you’ll enjoy a great white smile and fresh breath as well. You now know how smoking negatively impacts your oral health and we hope this helps you make the commitment to quit. By simply quitting smoking, smokers, can, over time, reduce their risk levels and the sooner one quits, the greater the reduction in risk levels.

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Making your child’s dental visits a smooth process.

 Fear of the dentist is pretty common for kids, especially for younger ones who can get overwhelmed with all the lights, sounds, smells and tools.

Regular checkups and cleanings are as important for children as they are for adults, and it’s vital to help them feel comfortable so they don’t form dentist-avoidance habits in the future. Here are a few things you can try to help them overcome their fears and make your trips to the dentist pleasant ones.

• Talk to your child about the dentist and create excitement. Don’t say “It won’t hurt” or “Don’t be afraid” because your child many not even associate these with a visit to the dental office until you bring it up.
• Explain the importance of prevention to them. They may find teeth cleanings a little uncomfortable, but it’s by far the least invasive procedure.
• The younger your child is when they begin regular visits, the better chance that they will grow accustomed to dental visits rather than developing a fear of them. Even if at each appointment the child just sits on the chair to get familiar with the dental office, little by little they will become comfortable with dental visits and the dentist. 
• Schedule their dental appointments at the same time as yours when possible and have them in the room with you while you get your teeth cleaned. This will show them that there is nothing to fear.
• Keep dental visits consistent (about every 6 months) to avoid problems associated with long breaks, like cavities and plaque buildup. Remember, the longer the break between visits, the longer and more difficult the cleaning will be.
• Let Dr. Scopu or one of the dental assistants know if your child is a little nervous, and they’ll do everything they can to help ease their fears. At DentAlign studio, we deal with this all the time and have gotten pretty good at helping kids feel comfortable.

 

 

 

 

 

 

By: Paola H.