How Effective are Fluoride Mouthwash?

Worldwide Systemic Review Confirms Benefits

Dental professionals have seen research supporting the evidence of the benefits of fluoride. It is known that fluoride helps prevent tooth decay by slowing the breakdown of enamel and increasing the rate of the remineralization process, making the enamel more resistant to acid. While dentists see the effects of fluoride in their general practice, can this be proved by statistics? Research is still ongoing and needs to be constantly systemically reviewed.

In 2016, the Cochrane Oral Health Group published its most recent review in which the objective was to determine the effectiveness and safety of fluoride mouthrinses in preventing dental caries in the child and adolescent population. This review included 37 trials involving 15,813 children and adolescents from different countries and spread over two to three years. Mostly trials based in schools and under supervision, the children were tested with sodium fluoride mouthrinses in specific concentrations.

There appear to be no significant differences regarding baseline caries severity, background exposure to fluorides, rinsing frequency or fluoride concentration. It confirmed that supervised, regular use of a fluoride mouthrinse can reduce tooth decay in both children and adolescents.

The combined results showed a 27% reduction in dental caries in subjects with decayed, missing and filled tooth surfaces when compared to another group that didn’t use fluoride mouthrinses. There was limited information on adverse effects or tolerance of children to the rinsing. The trial didn’t include children with primary teeth. Hence, there’s still room for more research.
The review has demonstrated the beneficial effects of fluoridated mouthrinses and more and more dentists trust the use of this compound in their practise.

Issaquah Dentists and Evidence-based Care

Over at Meadow Creek Dental, our professionals are in sync with trends and latest research findings in the dental field. When it comes to products and tools to advance patient care, we are always at the forefront of continuing education . Know more about the benefits of fluoride mouthrinses from your Issaquah dentist.

The Causes of TMD

A disorder in your temporomandibular joint, known as a TMD, comes in many forms.

“What Is the TMJ?

The temporomandibular joint is the area just in front of your ear, where the lower jaw connects to the side of your skull. The joint comprises a complex system of muscles, ligaments, bones and cartilage discs that act together as a hinge and enable you to move your lower jaw forward, backward and side-to-side. Any situation that causes the jaw to malfunction is called a TMJ disorder, and its symptoms can carry discomfort to the ear canal.” (Source: Colgate)

They generally represent a problem with the joint of your jawbone or the muscles that are used to manipulate this bone. The root cause of many TMD’s is often hard to pin down, but some of the most common problems include the following:

  • If you are a woman, particularly a woman between the age of twenty and forty, you are statistically more likely to develop a TMD. The reason behind this is not well understood.
  • An injury suffered around the area of your jaw, neck, or head.
  • Excessive clenching of the jaw or grinding of the teeth, which puts a lot of stress on your jaw muscles.
  • A TMD is occasionally the symptom of a more serious disease, like gingivitis or oral cancer. These can affect the way your jaw fits into your skull.
  • Osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis in your jaw can come in the form of a TMD.

Meadow Creek dental can help you to overcome your TMD’s. Consult our Issaquah dentist during normal business hours to learn more.

When Should I Pull Out a Loose Tooth?

When is it safe to pull out a loose tooth?

Having a loose tooth can often be uncomfortable and inconvenient for a child. It makes it difficult to eat, and some people become worried that the child might swallow it in the middle of the night. However, it is generally best to allow the tooth to come out on its own, rather than yank it out prematurely.

Firstly, it’s important to be mindful of how delicate a child’s mouth is. When you reach in to remove a tooth, it’s difficult to avoid damaging his or her gum tissues. Only the child can know for sure how painful it is to force the tooth out, so it’s important to allow him or her to judge the situation.

Though it’s possible that your child may end up swallowing a loose tooth, this is really nothing to worry about. Teeth are small enough to usually pass harmlessly from your system.

The only time you should consider helping a loose tooth along is when the permanent tooth begins to emerge underneath it. There is some risk that the new tooth will come in crooked if its way isn’t clear. Should this become a concern for you, talk to our Issaquah dentist to make sure that it is extracted properly.

How to Overcome Childhood Dental Anxiety

Dental Anxiety

Millions of people suffer from dental anxiety, and most of them can trace the roots of this problem back to their childhood. Indeed, fostering comfort with the dental office is something that should begin at an early age.

Tips to Help Dental Anxiety

You can help your child feel better about his or her dental appointments with Meadow Creek Dental in Issaquah by considering the following tips:

  • The general recommendation is that a child’s first dental visit should occur at the age of one. Bringing him or her in at an early age is not just a good way to prevent decay, but also a great way to acclimate the child to the experience of being in the dentist office.
  • Children have a surprising sense of the emotions of their parents. If you are anxious about visiting the dentist, your child could be picking up on this and learning from your example.
  • Present the dentist office to your child with a positive light, but avoid using language like “everything will be alright”. You want to avoid losing your child’s trust if he or she experiences discomfort during your visit.
  • Never offer your child a bribe to go to the dentist. Children are smart enough to realize that, when you promise them a reward, there must be something bad to look forward to.

Sleep Apnea Treatment at Issaquah Dental

End Snoring and be Safe

When snoring during sleep occurs too frequently or last longer than it used to, it’s one of the signs of sleep apnea. It is a condition where the upper muscles of the throat relax or collapse and block the passage of air through the esophagus. Sometimes it can be obstructive where totally no air gets through and causes the sleeper to gasp, waking him with a start. The more episodes you have during a sleeping hour, the more severe is the condition.

Remember that this can lead to low oxygen levels in the blood, and can be harmful to the heart and the brain. It needs to be professionally examined.

The use of mouth guards is a dental sleep solution for mild to moderate sleep apnea. They come in many brands and styles as fits-all types or multiple sizes. The customized oral appliance, that fits a patient’s oral measurements, is another type and is designed to enlarge the airway and prevent those upper muscles and tissues from collapsing. On the other hand, for the severer types of apnea, a device called a continuous positive airway pressure (or CPAP), is intended to deliver continuous supply of compressed air via a mask.

Seek the Experts Only

Since any misdiagnosis of sleep apnea and of the patient’s suitability for the appliance can lead to potential problems, only personnel who are trained and qualified and have extensive knowledge of sleep disorders should employ and fit such devices. When you visit Meadow Creek Dental, you will consult only with the best qualified practitioners in this regard.

Our Issaquah dentist will determine the cause of your sleep apnea, such as an anatomical condition like large tongue, excess throat tissues, or enlarged uvula and tonsils. Dr. Dipti may encourage some lifestyle changes, like smoking cessation, stricter alcohol intake and dieting that can aggravate your condition. Our clinic makes available to you these choices and a simple consultation can determine your suitability.

Toothpicks are No Substitute for Floss!

Some people like to use a good toothpick or similar pick-like device to clean out between their teeth. However, there is really no substitute for a proper string of floss.

While toothpicks are good for extracting a corn husk or piece of spinach after a meal, they’re just not built to do the job of floss. Floss lets you get all the way into the gap between your teeth, which is the only way to reliably clear away plaque and detritus that has gathered there. Trying to force a pick to go where your floss is meant to go only risks of spearing your gums or even splintering the pick, leaving irritating bits of wood amid your fragile tissues. The length of the floss also lets you cycle in a fresh bit of thread with every tooth, while a toothpick forces you to use the same plaque-stained tip for every gap between teeth.

Our Issaquah dentist recommends that you always get your daily flossing in, and never try to use a toothpick in its place. Consult Meadow Creek dental for more information on proper oral hygiene.

Dealing With Tooth-Grinding

Is tooth-grinding starting to cause you pain? Your Issaquah dentist can help you out! Try following these simple tips to reduce your grinding and spare yourself the grief of broken teeth and jaw pain:

  • People often grind when they are feeling stressed. Figure out the cause of your stress, and find a way to cope with or alleviate this stress.
  • Pain in the teeth or jaw area can cause you to grind. Have your dentist look at any potential aggravators in your oral cavity.
  • Cut back on caffeine.
  • Avoid drinking alcohol.
  • If you habitually chew items that are not food, like pens, bottle caps, or even gum, you’re training your jaw muscles to clench. This can lead to grinding.
  • If you grind during the day, you can train your jaw muscles to relax by placing the tip of your tongue between your teeth.
  • If you grind while you sleep, try relaxing your jaw muscles. Hold a warm washcloth against your cheek for a few minutes before going to bed.

Do You Have Sleep Apnea?

Our Issaquah dentist is proud to be able to offer sleep apnea treatment. This unfortunate condition affects the lives of many Americans, many of whom don’t even know that anything is wrong. It can sap your energy, increasing stress levels and contributing to heart disease, so be on the lookout if you think you may be at risk.

Sleep apnea is a condition in which you frequently stop breathing while you sleep. This forces your brain to wake up, often only partially, so as to start the air flowing again. You could potentially have your sleep cycle interrupted throughout the night without even being aware of it. If you think you might have sleep apnea, look for the following symptoms:

  • You’re prone to loud snoring.
  • Your partner reports that your breathing occasionally stops while you sleep.
  • You sometimes wake up suddenly, choking or gasping for air.
  • You frequently wake up with a sore or dry throat in the morning.
  • You sleep restlessly, or suffer from insomnia.
  • You are unusually sleepy during the day, even if you think you got a full night’s sleep.
  • You suffer from frequent morning headaches.
  • You experience forgetfulness and changes in mood.

Sleep apnea is very difficult to diagnose, and can only be properly identified by a medical professional. To find out more about sleep apnea and to explore your options for getting treatment, contact Meadow Creek Dental.

Protecting Your Teeth on a Meat-Free Diet

There has been a significant rise in the meat-free lifestyle in the past few decades. Many people are turning to vegetarianism or veganism, either out of concern for the environment or for their own health. Though there are, indeed, health benefits to such a diet, if you fail to plan properly, they can do more harm than good. This even extends to your oral health.

The problem with a meat-free diet is that meat is a low-carb, high-fiber food. When you eat it, it serves to naturally scrub food and plaque off of your teeth. Many fruits and vegetables are similar in their fiber content, but they also feed your oral bacteria with their plentiful sugar content.

Of course, this doesn’t mean that you can’t cut meat out of your diet. You’ll just need to take care to include more tooth-friendly dishes in your meals. Consider other high-fiber, low-sugar options, like legumes, beans, and whole grains. They will serve to clean your teeth in the same way meat does, while simultaneously giving you a good supply of vegan-friendly calcium to help you rebuild your tooth structure.

Talk to our Issaquah dentist to learn more about how to maintain good oral health.

The Modern Reality of Adult Braces

Getting braces is not a fun experience. Not only can adjusting your teeth be uncomfortable, but the wires in your mouth can make some people feel self-conscious. It is therefore that many adults make the mistake of avoiding the orthodontic work that they need and put themselves at greater risk of serious dental problems.

If you are so guilty, we have good news for you. The world of orthodontia has taken great leaps forward in recent years, such that the process of getting braces and the experience of wearing them is likely no longer as uncomfortable as you might expect. For example, many patients can benefit from highly innocuous braces made from clear or tooth-colored materials. The people around you may never even notice that you have braces, and you yourself may forget that you have them all.

If you think that you might be in need of braces, consult our Issaquah dentist. We offer a number of attractive options that will straighten your teeth and make you feel good doing it.