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Archive for the ‘oral hygeine’ Category

Excellent Oral Health is a Must No Matter How Old You Are!

Friday, January 22nd, 2016

2797271_blogAs a senior citizen you have every right to receive an impeccable standard of professional dental healthcare. After all, your mouth and teeth are a prized possession. They have served you during years of eating, drinking and celebrating, helped you speak and sculpt the smile and personality everybody knows and loves you for. They deserve your time and attention.

According to a survey carried out by Help the Aged, more than a third of over 75’s fail to have a regular dental check-up, a disconcerting discovery given that the elderly are more at risk of developing mouth cancer, diabetes and high blood pressure as a result of poor oral hygiene.

Although most people now regularly brush their teeth with fluoride toothpaste, simply brushing your teeth twice a day is not enough to sustain adequate oral health. Read on to discover how to maintain the dental health care you truly deserve.

Why senior dental health is a problem

Senior dental health is an issue in Great Britain for several reasons. Firstly, more and more elderly people are now retaining their own teeth, which can lead to the development of gum diseases that can in turn lead to cardiovascular disease, diabetes and oral cancer. Secondly, we are more likely to develop dental problems as we get older and oral cancer mainly occurs in people over 40. Thirdly, a lack of mobility means that fewer senior citizens are attending their regular six monthly check-up with their dentist.

Flossing or Inter-Dental Brushing?

Thursday, January 14th, 2016

357249_blogFlossing and inter-dental brushing form part of a good oral hygiene regime. Dentists will advise when is best to use either dental floss or an inter-dental brush, and on the most appropriate technique. Where dental devices or restorations are present, an inter-dental brush may be more suitable than floss.

The difference between floss and an inter-dental brush

Floss is made of a collection of nylon fibres or a plastic thread. The thread is held between the fingers and inserted between and around each tooth to remove all debris and plaque. Some flossing disposable devices have a small plastic handle that may be held during flossing.

Inter-dental brushes comprise a tiny bristled head attached to a plastic handle, similar to the handle of a toothbrush. The bristled head comes in different sizes, attaches to the handle and is replaceable. Individuals hold the inter-dental brush handle while moving the bristles between and around the teeth, cleansing the surfaces between teeth and just below the gum line.

Dental flossing technique

Take a piece of dental floss, about 18 inches in length. Wrap the floss around the each index finger and gradually insert it between the teeth, starting at one end of the upper dental arch. Clean each tooth, ensuring the floss gently moves in a C curve between and around the tooth and gum line. Use a fresh part of the 18 inch piece of floss per tooth. When the upper dental arch is complete, get another 18 inch piece of floss and repeat the action for the lower dental arch.

Inter-dental brushing technique

Use the right choice of brush head and to place it gently between the teeth, carefully removing it along with stuck food debris and sticky plaque. Repeat the action for each tooth so that any bacteria-attracting agents are removed to prevent tooth decay and gum disease. If you would like you would like to know more about oral hygiene, please contact the team at City Dental in the heart of Leeds.

Have a Tooth-Happy Christmas with Our Hygiene Treatments

Wednesday, December 2nd, 2015

3884462_blogWhen the log fire is roaring, everyone’s gathered around exchanging presents and there’s Christmas tunes playing in the background, the last thing you want is a bout of toothache. If you’re gearing up for a perfect family Christmas and are eager to steer clear of any unwanted dental dramas, why not book a hygiene session today? Our experienced, friendly hygienists can give your teeth a good clean and polish and ensure you have peace of mind going into the festive season.

The benefits of hygiene treatments

Hygiene treatments are designed to provide a deep clean to target problem areas and rid the mouth of harmful plaque, the main risk factor for both decay and gum disease. Our hygienists can achieve a much more intensive clean than you can at home with a brush and treatment will not just make your mouth feel really clean and fresh and reduce the risk of festive dental problems, it will also give you a bright, sparkling smile in perfect time for the office party, family gatherings and New Year celebrations.

Hygiene treatments aren’t painful and they make a really positive difference to your oral health. Our hygienists will also be happy to talk to you about oral hygiene and offer some tips and guidance to help you improve your daily regime at home.

Do I really need to see a hygienist?

Many people assume that you only need to see a dental hygienist if you’ve got problems like bad breath or gum disease. However, seeing a dental hygienist has amazing benefits for every patient, regardless of their oral health status. Even the most diligent patients can benefit from an annual trip to the hygienist. In addition, we also encourage patients to keep up to date with routine check-ups.

To book an appointment or find out more about oral hygiene services, simply give us a call or pop in and visit if you’re in Leeds city centre.

Cleaning Your Tongue – An Easier Business Than You Thought!

Monday, November 16th, 2015

2823674_blogMany people neglect their tongue when they clean their mouths, either simply from not knowing it should be cleaned or from not knowing the correct way to clean it. Many people simply don’t see the point in thoroughly cleaning their tongue, but it is actually strongly recommended by dentists.

It is advised to brush your teeth twice a day to dislodge plaque and food debris from your teeth and gums and to prevent tooth decay and gum disease. In comparison, the smooth surface of your tongue makes it hard for plaque to take root and it is often washed away by saliva. As such it isn’t as necessary to clean your tongue as often in regards to preventing gum and tooth decay.

So why should I clean my tongue?

The main reason it is advised to clean the tongue is to prevent bad breath. Although it is very hard for plaque to get a foothold on the tongue, bacteria that can cause bad breath is often found at the rear of the tongue, towards the throat. Although not dangerous in the same way as plaque, this can lead to very poor smelling breath if it is allowed to build up.

How should I clean my tongue?

Using a regular toothbrush on your tongue at the same time as you brush your teeth is an effective and simple way of getting rid of bacteria. When you brush your tongue you don’t need to put too much force behind it, this could cause more damage than good. Because the area mostly affected by this bacteria is the back of the tongue, using a toothbrush can sometimes make you gag. To stop this, specifically designed tongue cleaners known as tongue scrapers can be bought from many pharmacies or supermarkets.

Looking for a Leeds dentist? City Dental dentists are here to help.

Anyone who is suffering from bad breath should clean their tongue on a regular basis if they are not already doing so as it is one of the leading reasons for bad breath. It should also be remembered that the best way to go about this is to clean the very back of the tongue, using either a toothbrush or a tongue scraper.

Terrific Treatment for Tooth Decay

Monday, November 2nd, 2015

Happy buddies laughingThe dissolving of the outer layer of the teeth by the acids in the mouth is called tooth decay. Luckily there are multiple techniques available for patients in Leeds that can be used to deal with this condition.

Fluoride

Fluoride is the best option when it comes to preventing and stopping tooth decay. Fluoride can be found naturally in food such as tea and fish. It can also be manufactured and good toothpastes contain synthetic fluoride. If the decay is caught in the initial stage then the dentist will apply some concentrated fluoride varnish or paste to the affected area, which will stop the decay from spreading. However, if the decay has worn out the enamel then the dentist will remove the decay and use a filling to restore the tooth and prevent further decay.

Fillings and crowns

Fillings and crowns are used when the decay becomes extensive. The filling will be used as a replacement for the lost enamel. Various types of fillings are used, such as amalgam, composite, and glass ionomer. Inlays and onlays are also used for fillings.

In certain cases, part of the decayed tooth is drilled out and crowns will be placed on the remaining part of the tooth. Crowns can be made from gold, ceramic, glass and porcelain.

Root canal treatment

If the decay has reached the pulp of the teeth then the dentist will need to replace it with an artificial pulp, which will keep the tooth in place. This process is known as root canal treatment. With the help of modern dental techniques it has become relatively painless to received root canal treatment.

When the decay is in the final stages and the tooth is severely affected, the dentist will need to remove the tooth to protect the remaining teeth from infection. Once the tooth is removed an empty space will be left between the teeth, which can negatively affect the functioning and shape of the remaining teeth. In order to avoid this, the dentist will place a bridge, denture or implant in the empty area.

How to Make Teeth Cleaning Fun for Your Children

Wednesday, October 21st, 2015

318711_blogIs your child at the age where they are becoming more eager to take care of themselves? It is quite an exciting time for both children and parents when kids start to learn how to take on more responsibilities. Starting off with their first steps and words, then on to potty training and later learning about general and dental hygiene, a child can progress quickly and thoroughly if they have a good teacher.

A general rule of thumb is to brush your children’s teeth until they are seven years of age and then show them how to do it themselves. There are many ways to make something as mundane as brushing teeth entertaining for your children. The best way to teach them how to take care of themselves is by making the chore fun!

Another approach to encouraging your children to brush their teeth correctly is to create a positive environment. When you show enthusiasm, your child will follow suit, so why not entertain while you brush by tap dancing, singing, or making jokes? You could also find a radio or CD player that plays their favourite music as a reward for brushing their teeth.

Enhance their enjoyment of teeth brushing by turning it into a numbers game, counting up to ten for each part of the mouth they clean. This will also allow them to know when the tooth brushing will end and thus they won’t become as restless and fidgety, wondering when the chore of tooth brushing will be over.

The key to teaching your children great hygiene practices is to make it fun. You can make your own technique, tweak it to their personality and watch and observe the results!

Tooth Brushing Techniques

Saturday, October 17th, 2015

357249_blogBrushing your teeth is the best way to combat build up of plaque, tooth decay, bad breath and gum disease. It’s incredibly easy to do, takes only a few minutes and should already be a part of everybody’s daily routine. By brushing your teeth twice a day, morning and night, you can stave off a whole assortment of oral health nightmares, all the while making your teeth and most importantly your smile sparkle. Brushing should be done by everyone regardless of their diet, but for those who consume a lot of sugary, sweet foods it is especially important. This is because those kinds of foods contain sugars and starches that are quick to cause plaque build up and eat at the enamel, causing tooth decay.

Flossing

Flossing your teeth should be done alongside brushing as flossing daily helps to remove the plaque that builds up between the teeth. If you don’t brush or floss the plaque will grow and eventually harden into tartar. Plaque and tartar build-up has been linked to heart disease and other serious conditions so it’s not something we can afford to ignore.

Brushing the teeth

When brushing your teeth it’s important to use the right tools and equipment so that the process is as effective as possible and maximises the amount of plaque removal. A soft bristled toothbrush is recommended and fluoride toothpaste is shown to prevent tooth decay considerably. There are many different types of toothpaste on the market today, with products catering to a whole range of different needs, such as those with sensitive teeth, those with stained teeth and even natural toothpastes that are suitable for vegetarians and vegans. This means that there’s absolutely no excuse or argument against brushing.

The Link Between Oral Health and Heart Health

Thursday, October 15th, 2015

748875_blogIt has been confirmed at Hiroshima University in Japan that heart disease is strongly linked to oral hygiene. The idea of there being a correlation between the two has been debated in the past but the university study has proved there is a link.

According to the brain boffins of Hiroshima your chances of falling prey to a heart stroke are greatly increased if you have less than 24 teeth – almost 60% greater in fact – and are aged around 50 to 60.

The study was taken on 358 participants, all of whom were aged around 50 or 60 and strongly showed that those with 24 teeth or less had a 57% greater chance of having a heart stroke. Tooth loss is largely caused by gum disease and these finding have proved that those who regularly suffer from gum disease are at a much greater risk of heart problems as well as oral health problems, especially at an older age.

The doctors behind the research also discovered some other concerning issues while conducting the study. A large number of the people involved in the research had first begun to lose teeth around the age of 40, and given that the ages of those involved was between 50 and 60, many of the researchers expressed concern at the potential health problems and issues this entailed.

As well as the link to oral health, doctors are also emphasising the need to be aware of the effect of smoking, alcohol and obesity on the health of the heart and general healthy living is heavily encouraged to keep the heart in good condition and to avoid strokes and other heart diseases.

A Healthy Diet for Healthier Teeth

Sunday, October 11th, 2015

2429879_blogDiet is an important factor in how your mouth looks and feels. Sugar is converted  to acid in the mouth and this attacks tooth enamel, leading to tooth decay. Every time we eat our teeth are exposed to potential decay, and watching what we eat and drink can help prevent this process.

Healthy foods for teeth

Some foods contain calcium, which helps protect tooth enamel. These foods include meats (particularly chicken), cheese, milk and nuts. Vegetables and crisp, firm fruits such as apples are good for teeth as they contain a large amount of water. This lessens the effect of any sugar contained in them as well as helping the mouth produce saliva. Saliva is helpful in preventing tooth decay as it washes away bits of food debris in the mouth. If you are eating acidic things like lemons or other citrus fruits, try to have them as part of a meal, so the effects of the acid they contain is minimised.

Sugary foods

Foods that are bad for teeth include hard sweets such as lollipops, as well as other items with a high sugar content such as cakes, crisps or dried fruit. As well as being high in sugar, these foods have the potential to stick to your teeth and provide a source of fuel for any bacteria in the mouth. Take care when taking cough drops as they will coat teeth in sugar in the same way as other sweets.

What about drinks?

In terms of drinks, the best things for your mouth are milk, water and tea that does not contain sugar or sweetener. Try to avoid too many sugary or fizzy drinks, as well as coffee and sweetened tea. Do not sip sugary drinks throughout the day, as this means they are constantly being exposed to sugar. As well as preventing tooth decay, try to avoid staining by watching your consumption of red wine and coffee. If you would like to speak to one of our oral hygienists please contact the team at City Dental Leeds.

 

How Your Tongue Affects Your Oral Health

Thursday, October 8th, 2015

3428792_blogThe tongue is an important organ made up from many groups of muscles. We use it to talk, taste, swallow and chew, it holds food in place and sends vital messages to the central nervous system reporting on changes within the mouth. However, it does all of this instantly and without any thought from us and because of this its important role in maintaining oral health can often be overlooked and underestimated, leading to not-so-pleasant consequences.

Looking after the health of your tongue

Your tongue should be treated with the same amount of care and upkeep as you’d give your teeth and gums. Just as you would clean the rest of your mouth, the tongue needs cleaning too. This is because, contrary to how it may look, the tongue is not smooth and is in fact covered in tiny, barely visible bumps called ‘papillae.’ These bumps are bacteria hotspots and if not regularly cleaned, the bacteria that build there can cause halitosis, affect your sense of taste and can even spread to other parts of the mouth, leading to a number of different infections that can lead to tooth decay, gum recession and even tooth loss.

Tongue cancer signs and symptoms

Unfortunately tongues are no less susceptible to developing cancer than other parts of the body and noticing the problem before it has advanced can be the difference between life and death. This is why it’s important to check the tongue regularly to see if there any irregular cuts, abrasions or swelling. I suggest sticking your tongue out in front of your bathroom mirror and swirling it around to get a good look from all sides, top, bottom and side to side. If you do notice anything out of the ordinary, consult your doctor immediately. For more advice on looking after your oral health contact us at City Dental Leeds.