Posts for category: Oral Health
If you've stumbled upon this page there is a chance you may already be dealing with a situation that requires a visit. The dentist's office sparks in us apprehension that can make us put off making an appointment for as long as possible. But this approach almost assumes that dental problems can go away on their own when the contrary is the truth. The earlier you confront your dental problems the more routine your visit will be. To learn more contact your Clifton, NJ, dentist Dr. Toan Bui of Transcendental, LLC.
If you are embarrassed to show off your smile because of an imperfection or two then consider coming in to see your dentist. Problems like crowded teeth, gaps, or missing teeth can all be addressed with a variety of treatments.
Treating these, and other conditions go beyond the aesthetic. When the spacing between teeth is too limited it can be difficult to remove the plaque in these hard-to-reach spaces, which may eventually lead to tooth decay. Spaces too wide can allow food to become trapped inside and may cause similar results. Missing teeth cause the others to shift and may create problems with your bite and the spacing issues mentioned above.
If your gums bleed when your brush your teeth it's important to seek help as it could be a sign of gum disease. Gum disease a leading cause of tooth loss in adults and is most easily treated in its early stages.
Pain, in general, signifies a dental problem that's already progressed. Depending on the severity of the pain you may even require emergency intervention.
If you have not visited your dentist in some time then it's the surest sign that you should schedule a visit. Waiting until the discomfort is obvious can limit the types of treatments available to you. But with regular checkups, your dentist can treat these problems before they exacerbate and when paired with proper hygiene at home, may even help prevent them.
Make an Appointment to See Your Dentist in Clifton, NJ
Don't put off a visit any longer, make an appointment today with Dr. Bui of Transcendental, LLC, in Clifton, NJ, by dialing (973) 458-9899.
During the COVID-19 quarantines, stir-crazy celebrities have been creating some “unique” home videos—like Madonna singing about fried fish to the tune of “Vogue” in her bathroom or Cardi B busting through a human-sized Jenga tower. But an entertaining Instagram video from Kevin Bacon also came with a handy culinary tip: The just-awakened film and TV actor showed fans his morning technique for cutting a mango to avoid the stringy pulp that gets between your teeth. After cutting a mango in half, he scored it lengthwise and crosswise to create squares and then turned the mango inside out for easy eating.
With his mango-slicing video garnering over a quarter-million views, the City on a Hill star may have touched a nerve—the near universal annoyance we all have with food stuck between our teeth. Trapped food particles aren't only annoying, they can also contribute to a bacterial film called dental plaque that's the top cause for tooth decay and gum disease.
Unfortunately, it's nearly impossible to avoid stuck food if you love things like popcorn, poppy-seed muffins or barbecue ribs. It's helpful then to have a few go-to ways for removing food caught between teeth. First, though, let's talk about what NOT to use to loosen a piece of stuck food.
A recent survey of more than 1,000 adults found that when removing something caught between our teeth, we humans are a creative lot. The makeshift tools that survey respondents said they've used in a pinch included twigs, safety pins, screwdrivers and nails (both the hammer and finger/toe variety). Although clever, many such items are both unsanitary and harmful to your gums and tooth enamel, especially if they're metallic or abrasive.
If you want a safe way to remove unwanted food debris, try these methods instead:
Brush your teeth: The gentle abrasives in toothpaste plus the mechanical action of brushing can help dislodge trapped food.
Use dental floss: A little bit of dental floss usually does the trick to remove wedged-in food—and it's easy to carry a small floss container or a floss pick on you for emergencies.
Try a toothpick. A toothpick is also an appropriate food-removing tool, according the American Dental Association, as long as it is rounded and made of wood.
See your dentist. We have the tools to safely and effectively remove trapped food debris that you haven't been able to dislodge by other means—so before you get desperate, give us a call.
You can also minimize plaque buildup from food particles between teeth by both brushing and flossing every day. And for optimally clean teeth, be sure you have regular dental office cleanings at least twice a year.
Thanks to Kevin Bacon's little trick, you can have your “non-stringy” mango and eat it too. Still, you can't always avoid food getting wedged between your teeth, so be prepared.
When you were a kid, a plate of green beans or carrots probably seemed less appealing than a handful of cookies or a bowl of ice cream. Mom or dad telling you to “eat your vegetables” was the last thing you wanted to hear.
Hopefully, you've made friends with fresh fruits and vegetables as you've grown up. But even if you're just acquaintances, these foods are nonetheless essential to good health, particularly your teeth and gums. Among other things, they're packed with vitamins and minerals that help prevent tooth decay, gum disease or even oral cancer.
Here's a sampling of dental health-boosting micronutrients and the foods you'll find them in.
Vitamin C. Found in a variety of fruits and vegetables, vitamin C boosts the immune system to fight infections like tooth decay or gum disease. It's also an antioxidant that lowers your risk of cancer.
Calcium. This mineral obtained through dairy products, bony fish, greens and legumes, strengthens teeth and bones. It can also improve nerve and muscle function.
Vitamin D. This vitamin helps teeth absorb calcium to make them less prone to decay. You can find this essential vitamin in dairy foods, eggs, fatty fish or sunlight.
Phosphorus. Like calcium, phosphorus also strengthens teeth and bones. You'll find it plentiful in dairy and meats, especially seafood and poultry.
Magnesium. This mineral helps teeth and bones absorb other minerals and can also help with enzyme function needed to avoid disease. You'll find it in nuts, legumes, whole grains, dark leafy greens, seafood and chocolate.
If you don't think you're getting enough of these and other nutrients, you can obtain them through dietary supplements. But do be careful: The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) can remove harmful supplements from the market, but only after consumer use has provided evidence that they're unsafe. And, you won't be getting fiber or other elements found in regular foods that your body needs to be healthy and function properly.
Still, if you think you need to supplement a nutritional deficiency, speak first with your doctor or dentist about it and what you should take. If at all possible, though, eat your veggies—your teeth and gums, as well as the rest of your body, will be the healthier for it.
If you would like more information on nutrition's role in dental health, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Vitamins & Dietary Supplements.”
If you're among the estimated 14 million families with a healthcare flexible spending account (FSA), New Year's Eve has an added meaning—that's typically the deadline for using any current year funds. Since any remaining money in your FSA could go poof at the stroke of midnight on December 31st, you might be looking for a way to spend it. If so, consider a dental health boost for you and your family.
FSAs were created in the 1970s by the U.S. Government as a salary benefit that employers could offer employees. Instead of receiving all of their pay as taxable income, employees could designate a portion of it (currently up to $2,650) in a non-taxable account to use for certain medical and dental expenses. An FSA thus provides families a way to pay for uncovered healthcare costs while saving on their taxes.
But because most FSAs expire by the end of the year and then restart with a fresh balance in the new year, there's a natural concern that you will “use or lose” remaining money. People thus begin looking for eligible expenses like treatments, prescribed medications or eyeglasses. They can't, however, use them for items like over-the-counter medical products (though some pain relievers get a pass this year because of COVID-19), as well as most things cosmetic.
The same generally holds true for dental expenses—you won't be able to use FSA funds for procedures like teeth whitening or veneers. Toothbrushes and other routine oral care products are also ineligible, although you may be able to buy items like a water flosser if your dentist issues you a Letter of Medical Necessity (LMN).
Still, there's a wide range of eligible dental items you could pay for with remaining FSA funds.
Prevention measures. Any procedures or treatments intended to prevent disease are typically FSA-eligible. These can include measures like regular dental cleanings, sealants or fluoride applications.
Disease treatment. FSAs cover procedures like fillings, extractions, gum surgery or root canals. This could include repairing damage from disease through dental bonding or crowns, which might also improve your smile.
Dental restorations. Missing teeth restorations like bridgework, dentures or dental implants are also covered. These may improve your appearance, but they primarily restore disrupted dental function.
Out-of-pocket expenses. Although you can't pay for dental insurance premiums, an FSA may be able to help in other ways. You can use FSA funds for co-pays or any remaining out-of-pocket expenses.
If you're not sure what dental expenses might be eligible for FSA funds, give our office a call and we can provide you guidance. If FSA funds can help, you'll be able to improve your dental health—and possibly your appearance—before you ring in 2021.
If you would like more information about managing your dental care, please contact us or schedule a consultation.
Preventive dentistry can help you maintain a healthy mouth and avoid oral health problems in the long run. An important aspect of preventive dentistry is scheduling regular dental exams with professional teeth cleanings. Visiting the dentist regularly makes it possible to detect potential issues early on so they can be treated promptly before they become more serious. Dr. Toan Bui, the highly skilled dentist at Transcendental in Clifton, NJ, can help you achieve and maintain optimal oral health with preventive dentistry.
What is Preventive Dentistry?
Preventive dentistry is a specific branch of dental medicine that emphasizes the prevention of oral health problems. The goal is to assist patients in achieving and maintaining excellent oral health. Some ways this can be accomplished include regular dental checkups that give the dentist an opportunity to identify oral health issues that need attention. Treating any problems right away helps in the long run by preventing more serious oral problems from developing.
Another aspect of preventive dentistry is professional teeth cleanings, which provide a more thorough cleaning of the mouth than can generally be achieved at home. Preventive dentistry includes a wide range of dental services designed to help patients enjoy a healthy mouth and avoid oral health issues. Examples of some of the preventive dentistry services provided by the experienced dentist at our office in Clifton, NJ, include:
- Oral exams
- Dental sealants
- Fluoride treatments
- Professional cleanings
- Oral cancer screenings
- Gum disease treatment
- Night grinding appliances
- Athletic mouthguards
Benefits of Preventive Dentistry
A major benefit of preventive dentistry is preventing the development of various oral health concerns, such as tooth decay, gum disease, tooth loss, excess wear and tear on teeth due to night grinding, and damage to teeth due to athletic injuries. Oral health problems can be avoided through preventive care services, such as professional cleanings, fluoride treatments, and dental sealants. Additionally, teeth can be protected from being worn down, chipped, or otherwise damaged by wearing a night grinding appliance or an athletic mouthguard.
Another benefit of maintaining optimal oral health through preventive dentistry is that you can save money in the long. When more serious oral health problems are avoided, there is no need to undergo potentially costly dental procedures to restore damaged or missing teeth, or the health of your gums.
There are many ways preventive dentistry protects the health of your teeth and gums, but it can also benefit your overall health as well. Numerous studies have identified a link between oral health and overall health. Poor oral health could potentially increase an individual’s risk of developing certain health conditions, such as heart disease or stroke. The same oral bacteria that can lead to tooth decay or gum disease can also enter the bloodstream and travel through the body and cause additional health problems.
There are many ways preventive dentistry can help you in the long run. Dr. Bui can advise you as to how often you should schedule preventive dental visits based on your individual needs. To schedule an appointment with our exceptional dentist, call Transcendental in Clifton, NJ, at (973) 458-9899.