Easing Dental Phobia and Anxiety

Climbing into the dental chair can be an unnerving experience for some. It is estimated that nearly 40 million Americans avoid visiting the dentist every year because of dental phobia or fear. Unfortunately, when patients do not receive needed treatments and preventive care, serious oral health consequences often result.

Dental phobia or anxiety may stem from a previous unpleasant experience with a dentist, a fear of needles, or an aversion to perceived potential pain. Additionally, patients may struggle with feeling a lack of control or with shame about the condition of their teeth. The willingness to face these fears and anxieties head-on is an important step in overcoming dental phobia.

Signs of Dental Phobia

People with dental phobia are often panic-stricken and terrified at the thought of going to the dentist. It is a more severe reaction than simple fear or anxiety. Patients with this kind of phobia only visit the dentist when they can no longer bear extreme pain associated with a dental ailment, if they go at all. 

Here are some other common signs of dental phobia:

  • Inability to sleep the night before a dental exam
  • Nervousness, especially when waiting for the dentist
  • Feeling of physical illness before visiting the dentist
  • Uneasiness at the thought of objects being placed in your mouth

Patients with severe dental phobia may need to seek help from a mental health professional.

Managing Dental Phobia and Dental Anxiety

Patients can ease their fear and anxiety by using one or a combination of the following strategies.

  1. Be open about your fears.

Being honest and open about your fears is the most effective and easiest way to manage your anxieties. Once your dentist is aware of your anxiety, he or she can work with you to calm your fears. It is important to trust that your dentist has your best interests in mind when performing a dental exam or procedure.

  1. Have someone you trust at your side.

During your dental exam, consider bringing someone you trust along with you. This strategy is especially effective with children who may be nervous at the dentist. It can also help many anxious adults who need to be reassured that the dental exam is for their own good.

  1. Practice self-care before your visit to the dentist.

Drinking too much caffeine or not getting enough sleep the night before your appointment will make it more difficult to feel at ease in the dentist’s chair. Restful sleep before your dental procedure goes a long way in helping you feel at ease and relaxed. Avoid consuming too much caffeine, as it only exacerbates feelings of anxiety. Sugary foods should also be avoided. Try protein-rich foods, such as plain yogurt, which are known to have a calming effect.

  1. Get distracted.

Embracing distraction is a strategy that works well for both children and adults. Distraction may be in the form of watching an interesting TV program or listening to some relaxing music through earbuds. They not only drown out any unpleasant sounds but can also help you feel more at ease.

Prevention is key.

Annual or biannual dental care is important to ensure optimal oral health. Regular professional dental check-ups will help prevent cavities, as dentists have advanced equipment that can remove plaque more effectively than your ordinary electric or manual toothbrush. Dentists can also remove calcified plaque or tartar, which is difficult to remove even with the best oral care routine. Tartar can cause gum disease and may eventually lead to tooth loss if not checked.

These regular appointments can help dentists identify early signs of gum disease, cavities, and other common dental problems. Your dentist will be able to provide the right treatment before these problems become more serious. Prevention is often much less invasive than correcting issues that have compounded while avoiding dental care.

 

Dr Mott

Dr Chris Mott

Dr. Mott proudly serves the greater Shreveport & Bossier area. His dental practice has the best in modern dental technology, and their highly trained staff is ready to assist you. Dr. Mott is one of the best, most highly rated Bossier dentists. Stop in and see what everyone is talking about. Make your appointment with Dr. Mott today.

 

Solutions for Managing Keto Breath

Have you started a ketogenic diet and suddenly noticed you have bad breath? You’re not alone in your keto breath. The ketogenic (keto) diet is a popular weight loss diet in which users consume foods high in fats, moderate in protein, and low in carbohydrates in order to achieve ketosis.

Ketosis is a natural metabolic state that occurs when a person consumes fewer carbohydrates than the daily recommended amount, causing the body to start burning fat for fuel. With low carb intake and the body burning fat for fuel, weight loss often results.

What Is Keto Breath and How Does It Occur?

Keto breath is a type of bad breath that occurs when the body is in ketosis. The breath is characterized by a distinct taste or odor in the mouth that’s quite different from ordinary bad breath. The breath has also been described as tasting metallic or having a nail polish remover–like odor as well as a fruity smell.

So how does the bad breath occur?

Ketosis occurs when your body breaks down stored fat for fuel. When your body burns the stored fats, a natural chemical known as ketone is produced.

Ketones are usually harmless and exit from the body through the mouth and urine. When ketones are released through the mouth, you experience keto breath. This unpleasant breath is one of the signs that your body has entered into ketosis. This unsavory breath can occur on any low-carb diet, including a paleo diet.

How Long Does the Breath Last?

For most dieters, the distinct breath may only last a few weeks after starting a low-carb diet. Fortunately, the breath is temporary and will significantly subside as your body adjusts to the diet.

What Can You Do to Manage Keto Breath?

While the bad breath only occurs for a short time, it can have a negative impact on your self-confidence. Here are some simple solutions for easily and effectively combating your keto breath.

  • Floss and brush your teeth at least 2 times daily.

Poor dental hygiene can worsen your keto diet–induced breath. Although brushing and flossing your teeth on a daily basis may not eliminate your bad breath completely, it can greatly reduce the odor from your mouth.

Consider carrying an extra toothbrush so you can brush right after lunch or after snacking at work or on the go to prevent your breath from becoming worse. 

  • Chew sugarless gum.

Chewing gum stimulates the production of more saliva in your mouth. Saliva prevents bacteria from sticking in the mouth and also helps break down plaque and eliminate acids in your mouth. Saliva basically rinses your mouth, keeping it clean, fresh, and odor-free.

Consider chewing sugarless gum that contains xylitol, as it helps break down bacteria that causes bad breath.

  • Drink plenty of water regularly.

Drinking plenty of water on a daily basis is not just good for your skin and overall health, it can also help combat your bad breath.

When you drink water, the bacteria, plaque, and stuck food particles in your teeth are washed away. While on a keto diet, make a habit of drinking a lot of water, and swish your mouth after eating snacks. This will prevent the odor from building up, keeping your breath fresh all day long.

  • Rinse your mouth with fluoridated mouthwash.

A fluoridated mouthwash can be an effective yet temporary means of eliminating bad breath. Rinsing with the mouthwash helps prevent the formation of plaque and bacteria in places the mouthwash can reach and removes food particles from the mouth.

  • Eat foods that help mask bad breath.

Several foods can help mask bad breath, and there are some great keto-friendly options! Unsweetened yogurt with live cultures and probiotics inhibit the growth of odor-causing bacteria. Broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, and spinach are all high in vitamin C, which also helps prohibit bacteria growth.

Keto diets are extremely popular right now, but the bad breath that comes with it can be a huge turnoff. Fortunately, you now have some options to help keep the keto breath at bay.

 

Dr Mott

Dr Chris Mott

Always consult your doctor before beginning a diet. If bad breath is an ongoing problem for you, it could indicate a more serious condition and you should schedule a visit with your dentist. Dr. Chris A. Mott proudly serves the greater Shreveport & Bossier area. His dental practice has the best in modern dental technology and their highly trained staff is ready to assist you. Dr. Mott is one of the best, most highly rated Bossier dentists. Stop in and see what everyone is talking about. Make your appointment with Dr. Mott today.

 

3 Possible Dangers of Using Electric Toothbrushes

Electric toothbrushes are battery-powered or rechargeable toothbrushes with spinning, vibrating, or oscillating bristles that help clean the teeth. Because of these additional features, they are often perceived as being more effective in cleaning teeth with minimal effort. Despite these beneficial aspects of electric toothbrushes, they do offer a certain amount of danger if used incorrectly. In fact, according to Dr. Chris Mott, continuously using such a brush incorrectly can leave your teeth in worse shape than before. Below are some of the possible dangers of using these types of toothbrushes:

Danger to the Enamel

Brushing vigorously with an electric toothbrush can exert enough pressure to wear away your protective tooth enamel. This can be attributed to the abrasion that is caused by the spinning, vibration, or oscillations of the bristles when brushing hard with an electric brush. Dr. Chris Mott an experienced local dentist recommends moderation and light handed control in the use of these toothbrushes. In fact in extreme cases, the patient may be advised to stop using these types of toothbrushes altogether.

Receding Gums

After long-term use, you may also begin to notice that your gums are also receding. This is particularly common with the bottom front teeth. It often results in excessive sensitivity, where you experience pain whenever you drink something cold or hot. You may also begin to experience excessive bleeding when brushing your teeth. The teeth may also begin aching whenever you start brushing them. If you initially had healthy teeth, you may want to switch back to a normal brush and visit your dentist to assess the damage.

Over brushing the Teeth

Electric toothbrushes are very powerful gadgets. For this reason, brushing your teeth using these devices requires you to be extremely careful. However, so many people damage their teeth because they either brush them too often or too hard. Ideally, brushing your teeth vigorously or for more than two minutes can result in complications. In fact, this is the main cause of gum problems and abrasion cavities with these toothbrushes. This can be particularly challenging with children using these types of toothbrushes as they might not be aware of how hard they are brushing. To be on the safe side, Dr. Chris Mott advises that you supervise your little ones when they are brushing their teeth using these gadgets.

In spite of all these shortcomings, electric toothbrushes do have their own merits. For instance, besides being quite effective in their performance, they are also known to reduce incidents of gingivitis, a serious dental condition which is characterized by gum inflammation. If left untreated for long, this condition can even lead to the loss of teeth.

Although they are known to be more effective in removing plaque from teeth, electric toothbrushes need to be handled with great care. You do not need to apply excessive force in order to remove the plague. Instead, you need to be gently and let the bristles do their job. Just guide the brush and everything else will go well. Taking all these precautions will ensure that you have good dental health and you are not prone to irreversible teeth enamel damage or gum recession. If you have noticed any unusual dental problems, you can consult Dr. Chris Mott a local Shreveport Bossier dentist who provides quality advice and dental care to those people with dental issues.

 

 

Need a Root Canal? Here’s What You Can Expect

Toothaches can be quite uncomfortable. Nobody can deny this. The best way to deal with dental pain is to prevent it from occurring in the first place. Regular checkups and cleanings with Dr. Mott can help keep your teeth and gums clean, healthy, and pain-free. We realize, however, that sometimes things happen and tooth pain is inevitable.

There are times when a root canal is the best possible course of treatment for particular dental ailments. Root canals have a history of being one of the most vilified dental procedures of all-time. There are so many joke and stories swirling around about root canals that people tend to avoid them altogether unless their dental issues prove so excruciating that they are forced to face their fears.

But, are root canals really so scary? Is there any truth to the stories people tell about them? We’re here today to solve that mystery and put your mind at ease once and for all concerning root canals. Let’s get started…

Before building up huge amounts of anxiety about whether or not you need a root canal, let’s discuss some of the times dentists opt to perform this procedure.

Reasons You May Need a Root Canal

Root canals become necessary when the natural cavity surrounded by pulp within one’s tooth where the nerve resides becomes infected. When a bacterial infection attacks this cavity, the bacteria in question produce a gas that exerts pressure upon the tooth’s nerve. It is because of this pressure that pain manifests.

Some people have been known to struggle with additional symptoms such swelling of the face and neck. The excruciating pain resulting from these infections isn’t always immediate. Most people first struggle with mild levels of discomfort which manifest whenever they are eating or drinking.

Rather than waiting for the pain to emerge, such problems can be identified using an X-ray, at which point you could come in to see Dr. Mott and seek treatment.

What Exactly is a Root Canal?

The term refers to a dental procedure during which the nerve of a tooth (and the pulp surrounding it) are removed. As scary as it may sound, this procedure will not affect the health of your tooth. The nerve and the pulp in your cavity only exist to fulfill sensory purposes. This nerve is the reason you can feel hot and cold temperatures around your teeth. Removing the nerve will do little to affect the health of your tooth.

The Procedure

Root canals are relatively straightforward procedures. Before one is performed, an X-ray must be carried out to identify the problem and determine the extent of the damage. Once the actual procedure begins, the area around the tooth in question is numbed.

A hole is then drilled into the tooth, providing access to the nerve and pulp which is then removed, along with any decayed tissue. The cavity of the tooth is thoroughly cleaned and then sealed. It is that simple.

Dr Mott

Dr Chris Mott

Sometimes, the root canal cannot be completed on the same day, in which case the hole in the tooth is covered using temporary filling until the next appointment.
Root canals are almost always a success and are generally painless. People who complain about the pain of a root canal are usually talking about the discomfort they were dealing with before they sought the dental care to relieve the pain. When performed by an experienced professional such as Dr. Mott, root canals will relieve pain and restore your mouth to its original pain-free condition.

Dr. Chris A. Mott is a highly-experienced and well-respected dentist serving the Shreveport and Bossier areas. If you feel you may be in need of a root canal or just need a cleaning or checkup, please feel free to call our office and set up an appointment. We would love to welcome you into the Mott dental family.

water fluoridation

What You Should Know About Water Fluoridation

Using fluoride in drinking water has been debated since its first use in US more than 50 years ago. This issue has resurfaced after Portland, Oregon decided to implement water fluoridation back in 2014. Before this time, Portland was the only large city in USA not having fluoride in their drinking water. What exactly is fluoride, and how much of it is contained in the water that comes out of the tap? Here are some facts about water fluoridation that you should know.

What is fluoride?

Fluoride is a mineral that occurs naturally and it is known to strengthen the tooth enamel as well as prevent dental cavities.

Why is fluoride routinely added to public water supplies?

Almost all naturally occurring water sources contain fluoride but its level is too low to effectively prevent the teeth from decaying. Over 70 years ago, scientists began to perform tests in order to find out if adjusting the concentration of fluoride in water would enhance the general oral hygiene of the society. This project was referred to as community water fluoridation.

In the 1930s, it was noted that the severity and occurrence of tooth decay was much lower among people whose water contained higher level of natural fluoride which made other cities like Grand Rapids, Michigan to start adding fluoride to their water supply. Today, over 204 million people in the United States of America alone live in places where fluoride is added in the water supply.

How safe and effective is water fluoridation?

According to research, fluoride has been proven to reduce tooth decay by about 25% and water fluoridation is named among the 10 greatest public health inventions of the 20th century. The sources of fluoride have also increased to include certain dental products such as mouthwash and toothpaste, professionally applied fluoride products like gels and varnish, and prescription fluoride supplements. In the year 2010, the Department of Health and Human Services and the Environmental Protection Agency recommended that the level of fluoride in the water supply be lowered to 0.7mg per liter of water. Previously, the fluoride content ranged from 0.7mg-1.2mg per liter of water.

After a careful study of the communities whose water supply was fluoridated, it can be stated that indeed fluoride is effective in preventing tooth decay and cavities.

Argument Against Fluoridation

Though most of the water supplies in the USA are fluoridated, the risks and benefits of having fluoridated water are still debated.

Dr Mott

Dr Chris Mott

There has been an argument where critics states that adding fluoride to water can lead to certain health conditions, the most common one being dental fluorosis; a condition that is caused by intake of excess fluoride. It leads to teeth discoloration and

streaks on the teeth. Other studies suggest that there is a link between brain damage, fractures, cancer and fluoride though no clear connection has been found.

According to Dr. Chris Mott, a downtown Shreveport dentist, the recommended amount of fluoride should provide an adequate level of mineral salt that helps to reduce tooth decay in both children and adults as well as minimize dental fluorosis. If you have any questions concerning water fluoridation and dental health, please contact our office. Dr. Mott would be more than happy to discuss this issue with you further.

Most Incredible Toothbrushes of All time

Toothbrushes are one of the most ordinary items in life, it is almost hard to imagine how their monotonous design can be complicated or simplified. But somehow, people still manage to add unusual aspects. New models of toothbrushes are introduced yearly. Here is an outline of some of the most incredible toothbrushes of all time.

  • Dew toothbrush, self-standing toothbrush

The handle of this toothbrush is weighted and has a rounded end so that it can balance on the base. When this toothbrush is set down, it sways momentarily until it balances hence eliminating the concerns that your toothbrush maybe resting on a dirty surface

  • OHSO pocket toothbrush

This pocket toothbrush is convenient and compact. It has a small easy to fill and air-tight chamber that holds toothpaste saving travelers the hassle of carrying both toothpaste and a toothbrush. It is stored in a small plastic case and it can fit in the pocket, purse or a backpack.

  • Brush and Rinse Toothbrush

The current methods of getting water to the mouth when brushing create a lot of waste, are sloppy and they strain the body. This toothbrush solves this problem by redirecting water from the faucet to the mouth allowing easy rinsing.

  • Environmental Toothbrush

The love for the environment and brushing earned Dentist Natalya Taylor the idea to create these environmental toothbrushes. They are made from natural cellulose fiber and bamboo. They are environmentally sustainable, 100 percent biodegradable and do not pollute the environment.

  • Double Fast Toothbrush

This is a double sided electric toothbrush with bristles on both the bottom and the top. They are ideal for people who are compulsive about their oral hygiene yet hardly have time to brush their teeth normally.

  • Toothbrush without Toothpaste

Known as Soladey-J3X , these are solar powered toothbrushes that do not require toothpaste. Instead, they have a solar panel at the base that transmits electrons to the top of the toothbrush. The electrons react with the acid in the mouth creating a chemical reaction that kills bacteria and breaks down plaque. In order to operate efficiently, Soladey-J3X require twice the amount of light a solar powered calculator does.

  • Finger Mounted Toothbrush

Finger mounted toothbrushes are said to be one of the most effective toothbrushes. They comprise of a finger glove and a toothbrush that is a mounted at the top.

  • Silicone Baby Toothbrush

With a design similar to a finger mounted toothbrush, silicone baby toothbrushes are made of silicone and they are designed for babies who have not yet had teeth.

  • Pocket Electric Toothbrush

These toothbrushes are aimed at busy yet oral hygiene conscious women with crowded purses for a heavy tube of toothpaste and a big toothbrush. They feature a toothbrush that is concealed in a tube-like case that looks like a tube of mascara. They also have an AA battery that can last for about three months under normal use.

  • Tooth Tunes Toothbrush

Hasbro, a toy and board game company based in the US created these toothbrushes with the aim of convincing kids that brushing is fun. When the user presses a button, they play pop music and the better one brushes, the better the sound of the song being played.

If you have any questions or concerns about your family’s dental care, give Dr. Mott a call. We can schedule a cleaning or checkup for you and answer any questions you may have.

7 Steps to a Better Smile

7 Steps to a Better Smile

It is one of the most sought after things in America. Whether you’re a man or woman, young or old: everyone wants a beautiful smile. Your smile is one of the first ways you make an impression on others, it can tell them a lot about you – including how well you take care of yourself. It is, therefore, important to take good care of your oral hygiene to avoid health complications and make a good first impression, whether it’s on a date or for that big meeting. Having a bright smile not only makes you look better, but also makes you feel and act confident. Acquiring a better smile isn’t always hard, building good consistent habits can go a long way.

Here a some basic ways to make sure you have a good smile, brought to you but Dr. Mott.

Brush Regularly

One of the best ways to clean your teeth is through brushing habitually. This may seem obvious, but just because you already knew it doesn’t mean you practice it! Brushing your teeth is extremely important to do every day, twice a day. It helps to remove food particles that stick to your teeth after meals that encourage bacteria and tooth decay. Brushing your teeth will keep your teeth clean and your breath smelling good. It is helpful to brush your teeth after meals as well. If your dentist, such as Dr. Mott, prescribes fluoride toothpaste because of soft or decaying teeth, that can also help prevent unsightly tooth decay. Be sure to use soft bristled toothbrushes, and be firm but not too harsh while brushing your teeth.

Floss

Another obvious one! However, even less people follow this basic step to improving their smile. Flossing is important for keeping the area between your teeth clean and healthy. Flossing reaches the areas of your mouth that plaque, food particles, and bacteria are likely to accumulate. Flossing regularly will curb gum diseases and keep you healthy. It is recommended by Dr. Mott to floss at least once a day preferably before you go to sleep.

Visit your Dentist

Going for thorough checkups is crucial as it enables the dentist to sense any problem at an early stage so that he or she can catch it and fix it before you need major work done. It also allows the dentist to give you your bi-annual lecture so that you’re more likely to stay on top of your brushing and flossing. You could also take some time to examine your mouth yourself. This is simple: you could start by looking to see if you have swollen gums, bleeding gums, or any other unusual thing in your mouth. Consult your dentist, such as Dr. Mott, on what you should look out for.

Diet

It is essential to make your diet as healthy as possible: incorporate foods that are rich in calcium and vitamin C. This is because calcium strengthens both bones and teeth. Vitamin C also enhances the health of the gums. Ensure that your meals are free from sugary foods and if they are it is best to brush as soon as possible.

Don’t Smoke

Smoking poses risks of gum diseases and bad breath. Smoking causes mouth cancer and can severely affect the health of your gums and teeth. Additionally, the effects of e-cigs are unknown and may have similarly harmful effects so it’s best to stay away from those.

Whiten Teeth

Whitening teeth is a safe and very common procedure. You can get kits from target, or you can get teeth professionally whitened if you feel that it is necessary. You should also seek the dentist’s guidance if your teeth have severe yellowing. It is also of importance to consult your dentist prior to beginning any whitening process.

Cosmetic Procedures

Having crooked, discolored or missing teeth can alter your image and confidence. If you really want a solution to something that can’t be fixed by keeping good habits, you may want to consider a cosmetic procedure such as implants or braces.

Dr Mott

Dr Chris Mott

Achieving a great smile by keeping healthy habits is entirely doable, and it will also keep you and your mouth healthy. Following the tips provided will ensure that you keep that sparkling smile for years to come. If you need a checkup, advice, or a cosmetic procedure, contact Dr. Mott today and learn how you can achieve the smile of your dreams.

Photo Credit: New Age MD

bad breath

Foods That Mask Bad Breath

Most people are well aware of foods that cause bad breath, however, very few know of foods which can actually freshen one’s breath. Bad breath affects more than half of people world wide. Most of the time, bad breath is caused by certain foods we consume. Other factors include decay in the mouth, smoking, and inflammation of the gums, plaque, or even certain medications.

According to Dr. Mott, a Bossier family dentist, good oral hygiene is still the best way to keep from having to deal with bad breath. Some kinds of foods, however, can actually help you fight bad breath. Here are some options that could freshen your breath in between meals:

1. Yogurt

One of the waste products from anaerobic bacteria is hydrogen sulfide. This is one of the main components that cause bad breath. Yogurt lowers the amounts of hydrogen sulfide in your mouth. In order for it to be effective, it’s essential that you consume sugar-free yogurt. This food tip will especially prove beneficial if the yogurt contains active cultures. Make sure to check whether the yogurt you’re buying contains live active cultures or probiotics. Both are good at fighting bad breath as they create protein chains that inhibit growth of odor-causing bacteria.

2. Food Rich in Vitamin C

Vitamin C effectively helps to inhibit growth of odor-causing bacteria. Citrus fruits are high in Vitamin C. Also, pure lemon juice is an effective anti-bacterial agent that helps in neutralizing odors from odor-causing foods such as onions and garlic. Avoid drinking sodas or juices from citrus fruits which are loaded with sugar. Yes, they may contain lots of Vitamin C, but they’ll do more harm than good to your teeth and waistline. It’d be best to consume citrus fruits as pure juice or raw fruits.

3. Crunchy Fiber Foods

Fiber-rich foods help increase the production of saliva. Crunchy and fibrous foods such as apples are excellent at removing particles and plaque from your teeth. They do just about as good of a job as brushing your teeth. Apples, celery and carrots are not only healthy, but great at fighting bad breath. As well, walnuts are perfect as they have omega-3 fatty acids which help lower the amounts of bacteria in your mouth. Feel free to crunch your way to better breath!

4. Herbs

Several herbs work exceptionally well when it comes to freshening breath. In addition to having anti-bacterial properties, they have a pleasant taste and odor. You can suck on them, chew on them raw, or steep in hot water for tea. Such herbs include peppermint, parsley, green tea, coriander, cardamom, rosemary and cinnamon.

5. Sugarless Gum and Candies

As a standard rule: any snack that increases the flow of saliva will help reduce odor in the mouth. You can opt for various flavors. Mint, for instance, will temporarily mask bad odor. On the other hand, cinnamon can stop it at once. The plant essential oil (cinnamic aldehyde), which is commonly used for flavoring cinnamon candies and gums, helps reduce odor-causing bacteria.

6. Water

It’s essential that you stay hydrated throughout the day. Good hydration will help with your breath and your and your overall health and well-being. Water moistens your mouth and throat, washing down food particles and bacteria that could be in your mouth. Always thoroughly rinse your mouth after eating or drinking anything other than water. Avoid drinking coffee, soda or any other drinks which contain loads of sugar or sweeteners.

Dr Mott

Dr Chris Mott

Often, bad breath is caused by imbalances of bacteria in the oral cavity. In the long run, masking bad breath is just a short-term solution. It’d be wise to visit a dentist, especially when the foods mentioned above aren’t helping considerably.

Dr. Chris A. Mott, owner of a top Bossier family dentistry office, is highly-experienced and well-respected by his patients. He offer substantially helpful advice on maintaining good breath and overall excellent oral health.

Visit http://www.drchrisamott.com for more information regarding your oral health and learn how you can improve and maintain your health.

cavities

These 5 Factors Can Put You at a Higher Risk for Cavities

Cavities are areas of a tooth that have decayed because of the work of certain bacteria in the mouth. Although tooth decay is commonly associated with eating sugary foods, there are other conditions that can increase the possibility of tooth decay. Here are five important factors that can put you at a greater risk of having cavities.

1. Oral Bacteria

Generally, cavities occur when certain strains of bacteria accumulate on your tooth and feed on remnants of the sugar and carbohydrates that you eat. This process creates acids which react with the calcium-based enamel covering of the teeth and create porous areas which eventually become cavities. The volume of cavity-causing bacteria in your mouth is one of most prominent factors that determines how fast you can develop cavities in your teeth.

2. Your Diet

The bacteria that cause cavities feed on sugar or carbohydrates to stay alive and multiply. Similarly, acidic foods and drinks can react with the calcium in the enamel and erode it. Increasing the level of acidity in the mouth can also make it more difficult for the saliva to restore the pH balance in the mouth. Reducing the consumption of sweets, chocolates and other sugary foods that leave residues on the teeth as well as acidic drinks can help to control the amount of cavity-causing bacteria in your mouth.

3. The Level of Dental Hygiene

Brushing your teeth correctly early in the morning and just before going to bed would reduce the risk of having cavities. Brushing and flossing dislodges trapped food particles and the plaque developed by oral bacteria. When plaque is not removed by proper brushing it can form a much harder and thicker substance called tartar. Removing tartar usually requires the help of a dentist. In addition, it is important to change your toothbrush regularly and use toothpaste that contains fluoride. Dentists recommend that you change out your toothbrush at least once every three months.

4. Dryness in the Mouth

A dry mouth can make the mouth cavity more acidic and promote tooth decay. Dryness in the mouth is frequently caused by inadequate flow of saliva. It may also be due to the use of medications and chemotherapy. However, when the saliva in the mouth is adequate, the minerals in it can neutralize the effect of excess acidity and even help to rebuild the enamel. To reduce dryness in the mouth, you should drink more water or use a mouth rinse with enamel-fortifying ingredients.

Dr. Chris A Mott

Dr. Chris A Mott

5. The Shape of Your Teeth

In many cases, tooth decay and cavities develop more in the large teeth at the back of the mouth. The premolars and molars are more prone to decay because of the tiny irregularities on their biting surface. These areas normally trap sugar, fiber and leftover food that serves as nutrition for bacteria. That is why it is very important to spend more time brushing the biting surface using a toothbrush with medium-hard bristles. However, the size of the fissures on these teeth differ based on genetics.

These are some of the most critical factors that increase the possibility of developing cavities and tooth decay. With proper dental care, you can reduce the impact of these risk factors and keep your teeth healthy for the rest of your life.

If you have any questions or concerns about your children’s teeth or are wondering whether or not you or your children may be more prone to cavities, give Dr. Mott a call. We can schedule a cleaning or checkup for you and answer any questions you may have.

Smiling boxer dog

Is Brushing Important for Your Dog?

Getting yourself to the dentist is always a hassle, but what about your pups? If you have perfect teeth and want to share your oral hygiene routine with someone, you can start in your own home! Your dog, once fully grown, will have 42 teeth which makes their mouths just as susceptible to plaque and dental wear as you are! So it’s time to get down and dirty with your dog.

Smiling dogDog’s Need a Toothbrush, Too!

Without proper brushing, a dog’s teeth can build up plaque which can cause bad breath. In addition, this can result in gum disease and even tooth decay for your pup. It’s important that you brush your dog’s teeth daily or at least routinely once or twice a week to prevent bacteria buildup.

You don’t necessarily have to use a fancy dog toothbrush, but it can be helpful if your dog isn’t fond of brushing time. If you have smaller dogs, you can use finger brushes, which fit perfectly in their tiny mouths. If you have a big dog, you can consider using brushes that have longer handles to make sure you get all of the teeth cleaned without shoving your entire hand in its mouth.

Always Use Dog Specific Toothpaste

Definitely do not use your own toothpaste to brush your dog’s teeth. The ingredients in the toothpaste we use can be deadly to your dog if ingested in large amounts. Even if you use a little bit of your regular toothpaste, your dog could experience serious discomfort or stomach issues.

You can find dog specific toothpastes at your local pet stores. They come in many flavors, from mint to chicken, that you can choose from! Picking your dog’s favorite flavor can really help in the brushing process as it makes it easier to keep them still while you brush.

Get to Brushing!

Husky smilingOnce you find the perfect toothpaste, lift your dog’s upper lip slowly and start with the upper teeth first. You should hold the brush so that the bristles are angled to reach the gums, as well as the teeth. Angling is important because it allows you to massage the gums, while also cleaning your pup’s teeth.

However, you may realize that working around the gum area can cause slight bleeding. Light breeding is normal, so don’t stress. However, heavy bleeding can be an indication that your dog has a gum disease. Schedule an appointment with your vet as soon as possible if you find that your dog is bleeding heavily after a brush.

Be sure that you are being gentle when you brush your dog’s teeth. If you are too rough, you may cause the gums to bleed more than expected. Use a soft, circular motion to brush your teeth, and you can avoid any serious injury.

French Bulldog SmilingAnd You’re Done!

It’s important that you talk to your dogs as you brush their teeth. This helps them remain calm while you get to work on their teeth. If they are overly upset or uncomfortable, you can pet them during the process to help ease their discomfort, too. Once you are done, you can reward your pup with a treat if they did well during their brushing.

We’re Here to Help

Keeping your dog’s teeth healthy is important, but it’s also important to keep up with your own teeth. If we spent half as much time taking care of our own teeth as we do taking care of our pets, we would have no problem making it to the dentist every six months.

Be sure you are visiting your dentist regularly, brushing your teeth twice a day, and flossing routinely. Even though we can’t help your dog with oral health, we can help you at Dr. Chris Mott’s office! Keep all your family, human and furry alike, happy by brushing regularly and flossing, too!