Which Candies are the Worst for Your Teeth?

Valentine’s Day Sweets

The holidays are a time for indulging in sweets, from candies to cakes to spiced ciders. Since many of these are rich in sugar, they can be quite hard on your teeth and gums. Of course, some sweets are worse than others, and a proper understanding of which are the least healthy from a dental standpoint can help you to assure better oral hygiene during the holiday season.

It’s not so much the sugar that harms your teeth as it is the length of time that the sugar is exposed to your teeth. It is better for your mouth to have a large amount of sugar pass quickly through your oral cavity than to have a small amount of sugar linger on your teeth for an extended period of time. Therefore, anything sticky, and anything that you suck on, like candy canes, toffee, and lollipops, is going to be worse than substances that are easy for your saliva to rinse away, like chocolates.

You can minimize the effect of sweets on your teeth by indulging only after meals, rather than snacking throughout the day. Contact our Issaquah dentist to learn more.

The Do’s and Don’t’s of Brushing

Our Issaquah dental clinic sees many problems that could have been avoided with proper brushing technique. Even a small flaw in your routine can gradually turn into a big problem for you and your teeth. If you think that your own habits could do with a little “brushing up”, take a look at our easy-to-follow tips here:

  • Flossing should come first. This allows the toothpaste to put its fluoride to better work between your teeth.
  • Brush twice a day, once after you wake up and once before you go to sleep, after your last meal of the day. You shouldn’t eat or drink anything aside from water after you last brush, as your mouth is more vulnerable to lingering food particles as you sleep.
  • Brush for two minutes at a time. Too little may leave you insufficiently cleaned, and too much might be too hard on your gums.
  • Do not brush too soon after eating. Acids in your food can compromise your tooth enamel for a short while, making them vulnerable to being stripped away by your brush.
  • Hold your brush at a forty-five degree angle to your teeth and brush in a circular motion so that you gently massage your gums.
  • Remember that plaque can gather on your tongue. Use a tongue scraper if you have one, or simply brush your tongue.
  • If you’re so inclined, follow up your brushing with mouthwash. There are many good options available to give your teeth the extra edge they need.

Most Women Practice Better Dental Care

In the battle of the sexes, it would seem that women are ahead in terms of proper dental care. This is according to a study conducted by the Okayama University Graduate School of Medicine, Dentistry, and Pharmaceutical Sciences. This study surveyed eight hundred participants on their dental habits, then subjected them all to a dental examination. Their findings were as follows:

  • Women were 26% more likely to report flossing every day.
  • Women were about twice as likely to report maintaining regular checkups.
  • 44% of women surveyed stated that they were aware that their overall bodily health was influenced by periodontal visits. 33% of men reported the same.
  • Women were about twice as likely to take notice of a missing tooth in another person.
  • 74% of women stated that they would feel embarrassment at being seen with a missing tooth. 57% of men said the same.

If your own dental habits could stand some improvement, contact Meadow Creek Dental. Our Issaquah dentist can give you the proper care that you deserve.

Dental Care Following a Stroke

A stroke is a serious matter, one which has long-lasting implications for your health. Unfortunately, some people can overlook the effects that a stroke can have on your oral health. If you recently suffered a stroke, be mindful of the following problems that you may encounter:

First of all, your daily oral hygiene routine may suffer. With a compromised strength in your grip and a decreased manual dexterity, the simple act of brushing and flossing can turn into an ordeal. In some of the less severe cases, you may simply need to wrap a washcloth or some similar padding around your brush to get a better grip. Others may benefit from an electric toothbrush, or a special flossing tool.

When it comes time to visit your dentist again, be sure to inform us of any medication you may be taking. Some of the medication taken by patients who recently had a stroke have negative implications, particularly anticoagulants. As these drugs encourage excessive bleeding, special care may need to be taken during certain dental treatments.

Finally, if you are struggling with memory loss, consider having your dentist write down your instructions after your visits.

The Effects of Heart Health on your Dental Care

A heart attack is a difficult thing to go through, one which will have long-lasting implications on your health and the way you take care of yourself. Your oral health is no exception. After your heart attack, be sure to take the following precautions to get the most of your care without risking any further damage:

First of all, it is generally a good idea to wait a minimum of six months after a heart attack before undergoing any serious dental treatments. Your body may not yet be strong enough to deal with the anxiety commonly associated with dental procedures. Further, if your doctor has prescribed you with medication to treat your heart, this medication may not react well with your treatment; some of these encourage bleeding, which can be dangerous in any invasive procedure.

When you are once again ready to return to our Issaquah dentist, give us a list of any medications you are taking, and their dosages. You may also benefit from giving us the contact information for your doctor, in case you have any further heart-related problems during your visit.