Category Archives: General Blog

3 Things You Need to Know About Your Tongue to Keep Your Mouth Healthy

The tongue is a key muscle we use for everyday activities like swallowing, tasting and talking. Regularly Child at the dentistcleaning your tongue is a vital part of keeping your mouth healthy.

Here are 3 things you should know about your tongue to maintain proper oral hygiene:

  1. If your tongue looks white and has grooves, it may be evidence of bacteria. The surface of your tongue holds bacteria and food particles, which can cause bad breath and harm your teeth.
  1. If your tongue is sore and bumpy, it may be because of your teeth. Grinding your teeth or accidentally biting your tongue on a regular basis can irritate your tongue. Make an appointment at Park Slope family dentistry if you notice these symptoms worsening over time.
  1. Moisture is an important part of a healthy mouth. Use a mouthwash after cleaning your tongue to add moisture to avoid dry mouth as well as kill any leftover bacteria.

You can brush your tongue with your toothbrush or use a tongue scraper. Getting a tongue scraper at the grocery store is an easy and inexpensive purchase. After brushing your teeth, gently run the scraper on your tongue to remove the mucus layer or debris. Remember to rinse the scraper with water after using.

By taking care of your tongue, you can help prevent bacteria from growing and damaging your teeth. All it takes is adding one step to your daily routine: brushing, flossing and tongue cleaning!

How Choosing Healthy Foods Can Help Your Oral Health

Did you know that brushing and flossing aren’t the only things you can do to help maintain good oral health? Fresh organic fruits at farmers market stallBefore it’s time to brush, think about how the foods you eat impact your teeth.

First, there’s the basics of what you should avoid or limit consumption. Foods that are high in sugar produce bacteria that can damage your teeth. Excessive amount of high acidic foods can also be harmful. However, rinsing your mouth or brushing your teeth after having sweet or acidic foods can protect your teeth.

Now, here are some healthy foods that can contribute to good oral health:

Apples – Fruits that are high in fiber and water can help your teeth. Chewing these substances creates saliva and helps stimulate the gums.

Almonds, Cheese and Yogurt – These protein and calcium-packed foods can strengthen tooth enamel. Yogurt has an added benefit, as probiotics fight against cavity-causing bacteria.

Leafy Greens – Lettuces like kale and spinach have more of that calcium to build up your enamel. These green also have folic acid, which has been linked to treatment of gum disease for pregnant women.

Carrots & Celery – These are good sources of vitamin a and chewing them helps produce saliva which cleans teeth.

Talk to your Brooklyn NY dentist to see how these and other dietary changes can improve your oral health.

Keeping Your Teeth Healthy While Pregnant

Knowing what to expect and how to care for your teeth during pregnancy will help you avoid adding any Expecting motherunnecessary stress during this exciting time. Slacking off on your oral hygiene during pregnancy can be risky, as gum disease has been linked to premature birth and low birth rate. Keep up with good oral care—just as you would when you aren’t pregnant—and do your best to account for hormonal changes and the increased risk of gum disease.

Make sure you don’t skip cleanings at family dentistry in Park Slope during this period. Your dentist can evaluate your gums and recognize any early signs of gum disease.

When you experience morning sickness, be sure to rinse your mouth after vomiting. Remember to clean teeth after consuming sugary cravings. It’s important to prevent acid and sugar from lingering on your teeth and causing decay.

Hormone changes during pregnancy can result in dry mouth and leave gums vulnerable to infection and irritation. The best way to protect your gums and prevent tooth decay is brushing twice daily and flossing. If your toothpaste makes you nauseous, consider changing to a different flavor.

As you head to your dental appointments during pregnancy, make sure to let your dentist know what month of your pregnancy you are in. For those with high risk pregnancies, you may want to post-pone major dental work. However, cleanings are safe and should still be kept up biannually.

Getting Your Toddler Toothbrush Ready

Growing up is an exciting time. You can take care of your baby’s oral hygiene by cleaning gums with a wash young boy smilingcloth. As teeth come in, it’s time to graduate from to your toddler’s very own toothbrush.  At around 6 months, baby teeth start coming in, though some teeth don’t start coming in until 12 or 14 months. By three years old, most children have a full set of 20 baby teeth.

Here’s a toddler toothbrush checklist every mom should have:

  • Use a soft-bristled child’s toothbrush.
  • Pick a colorful, themed toothbrush to make the brushing experience a fun everyday routine.
  • Throw out toothbrushes every 3 months or so as bristles bend.
  • Powered toothbrushes can make the process easier.
  • Pick a shape that allows for easily accessing the all teeth and gums in the back of the mouth. A brush with a large handle and a small head can be easier for a child to maneuver, as they begin to brush themselves.

As you see teeth starting to come in, you can make your child’s very first appointment at a park slope dentist. The American Dental Association recommends taking your child to the dentist by their first birthday. Taking the time to care for your child’s oral hygiene at an early age will help prevent tooth decay, which can occur when sugars are left on teeth.

Getting Rid of Bad Breath: What You Can Do

Ever wonder why your breath smells worse first thing in the morning? It’s not just because it’s been eight hours happy teen girl with bracessince you brushed. While you sleep your mouth produces less saliva, which normally cleanses your mouth and reduces bacteria, naturally preventing bad breath.

Luckily, saliva isn’t the only thing that can help. Here are 7 easy steps to get rid of bad breath:

  1. Brush twice daily – This removes food and bacteria buildup on your teeth.
  2. Don’t just floss before you go to the dentist – Flossing should be a part of your nighttime routine, as it reaches the parts of your teeth your brush cannot get to.
  3. Use mouthwash – Rinsing your mouth after brushing helps kill any remaining germs and bacteria.
  4. Use a tongue scraper – Purchase a scraper or use a toothbrush to clean off your tongue. This gets rid of leftover food, dead cells and bacteria.
  5. Regular dental checkups – Make sure you don’t miss your Park Slope Dental Your dentist can identify serious problems causing bad breath, such as tooth decay and gum disease.
  6. Change your diet – Cutting back on potent foods like onions can improve your breath. Also, some low-carb diets can contribute to strong aromas. Talk to your dentist about any major dietary changes.
  7. Avoid medication that causes dry mouth – When medications cause dry mouth, this reduces the saliva production. Depending on what medication you are taking, your physician may offer an alternative a drug that is not associated with dry mouth.

Fluoride: What is it and How It Can Help Keep your Teeth Clean

When you’re trying to choose toothpaste, there are lots of brands to pick from and each boasts of its unique Closeup of a tooth brush, with floss and rinseadvantages. Many of these options contain fluoride, which seems like a good thing. But what is this substance and what exactly does it do for your teeth? Let’s find out.

Understanding Fluoride

Fluoride is a natural mineral encountered in water and certain foods. It can be created in laboratories to be added to water and dental products. The substance helps prevent tooth decay by strengthening tooth enamel and preventing acid from bacteria and sugars from damaging teeth.

For example, when children’s developing teeth are exposed to fluoride, the mineral hardens the outer enamel. Once adult teeth emerge, fluoride hardens the enamel on these permanent teeth. Hardening the enamel helps fight against the development of cavities. Cavities occur when the enamel is worn down by acid and the inner part of the tooth becomes vulnerable. Your Park Slope Dentist can identify places where this has occurred and treat your tooth before the problem worsens.

Enjoying Fluoride’s Benefits

Another benefit of fluoride is that it actually mixes with your saliva in processes known as demineralization and remineralization. As the chemicals in your mouth dissolve, having fluoride present helps to keep teeth strong and protect them from acid attacks.

By brushing with a fluoride toothpaste and drinking fluoridated water, your teeth will be better protected from tooth decay.

What Causes Cavities?

Cavities are caused by tooth decay, which occurs in stages. By understanding these stages, you can better A dentist holding an x-rayprevent cavities from forming in your mouth.

Stage I: Plaque Forms In this stage, leftover sugar from the food and drinks combines with natural bacteria that live in your mouth. The bacteria produce acid and form a buildup on the teeth, which is known as plaque.

Stage II: Plaque Destroys Enamel – When plaque is left on a tooth, the acid in your mouth starts to eat away at the enamel. The enamel is the hard surface that is there to protect the outer surface of a tooth. These holes in the enamel are the first stages of cavities.

Stage III: Bacteria & Plaque Invade Tooth – As the outer layer of the tooth is destroyed, bacteria and plaque start to threaten the inner parts of the tooth, the dentin and pulp. Eventually, the bone supporting the tooth may also be exposed to decay.

Disrupt cavity formation by taking action during the early stages of plaque buildup. First, brush your teeth daily to prevent sugar from remaining on your teeth. Then make an appointment with a family dentistry in Park Slope to have any remaining plaque removed and holes in enamel treated.

Oral Health After 60: Five Risks You Should be Aware Of

As you age, the importance of maintaining oral health increases. Leaving your oral care unchecked puts you at senior dental carerisk for developing serious problems. Schedule your appointment with a Brooklyn dentist to help avoid these five major oral risks that increase with age:

  1. Tooth or Root Decay – As the gums recede, the roots of teeth may be exposed, leaving them vulnerable to decay. Help prevent decay by cleaning the gums and exposed root surfaces.
  1. Dry Mouth – Physical changes along with many commonly used medications can cause dry mouth. Because saliva assists in killing bacteria and supporting tooth enamel, dry mouth can increase the risk of oral disease. Ask your Brooklyn dentist if the medication you are taking is associated with dry mouth.
  1. Severe Gum Disease – This occurs when bacteria in plaque irritates the gums. Over time this condition destroys the gums, bone and ligaments supporting the teeth.
  1. Osteoporosis – This disease causes bones to become less dense and as bone density decreases, teeth may loosen and over time fall out.
  1. Mouth Cancer – The American Cancer Society reports that the average age of people diagnosed with mouth, throat and tongue cancer is 62. Early signs of mouth cancer include discolored patches in the mouth or open sores that last for a period of greater than two weeks.
  1. Remember to monitor your sugar intake and don’t miss regular appointments with your dentist to preserve your smile for decades to come.

Getting Calcium: Keeping Your Teeth Strong When You’re Lactose Intolerant

Many individuals who are lactose intolerant worry that they aren’t getting enough Calcium or Vitamin D to lettucesupport their teeth. Did you know that these vitamins might be hiding in some of your favorite foods? These are a few different kinds of foods that you can get your daily Vitamin D without dairy.

Breakfast foods – Some breakfast foods have added calcium and vitamin D. Check juices, breads, and cereal for added supplements.

Green vegetables – Greens such as kale, broccoli, and collard greens can contain the serving you need of calcium for a balanced diet. What’s great is you can add these veggies to a variety of dishes!

Fish – Many types of fish are loaded in vitamin D and calcium. Look for fish such as salmon, sardines, and rainbow trout.

Certain Dairy Products – While lactose intolerant people clearly stay away from dairy, moderation of certain products may help your calcium and vitamin D intake. For instance, hard cheeses have very small amounts of lactose than soft cheeses. Cottage cheese is also a low lactose option with high calcium. Additionally, live, active cultured yogurt is another low lactose option. Either way, be sure to consult your doctor before trying these options.

There are many lactose free, calcium/vitamin D rich foods out there. Be sure to read labels and talk to your doctor if you aren’t sure. Also, be sure to see your dentist regularly to maintain your oral health. Park Slope Dental in Brooklyn is committed to keeping your teeth healthy. Talk to one of our professionals if you have concerns. The Park Slope Dental team wants to help you with your general and cosmetic dentistry needs!

The Benefits of Using an Electric Toothbrush

While some people swear by one method over another, dentists have said that as long as you have a routine of Portrait of boy with bracesregular brushing and flossing, it doesn’t matter what type of brush you use. Electric toothbrushes have benefits that most health professionals forget about though.

  • Electric toothbrushes are great for those with mobility impairments. They can help you get into spaces that are too painful to normally reach. Additionally, they can help with smaller, more difficult oral health tasks, such as flossing.
  • Most electric toothbrushes come with timers. This is perfect for those who may not spend enough time on their oral health routine. For example, an electric toothbrush is ideal for children who may rush through or find keeping up with their oral health boring.
  • For those who have issues with gum health, electric toothbrushes can help. These types of toothbrushes clean deeper and remove more plaque. This, along with regular flossing, can greatly improve the gum health of those with sensitive gums.

Talking with your dentist can help you determine whether or not an electric toothbrush is right for you. Park Slope Family Dentistry is knowledgeable in general and cosmetic dentistry practices and is ready to help you maintain a healthy smile. Additionally, Park Slope Family Dentistry provides care to patients of all ages. Contact them today to get you and your family into a dental routine you’ll love.