Is This The End of Root Canals?

Dentistry’s most horrifying treatment, the root canal, is soon to be long forgotten thanks to radical new stem cell therapy. Researchers have said that this new tooth-filling method will cause teeth to repair and even regenerate. This approach will significantly impact millions of people with dental issues every year, providing dental fillings that will help heal teeth injured by dental surgery or disease.

Wyss Institute of Harvard University
Researchers on dental care from the Wyss Institute of Harvard University and the University of Nottingham have come up with a therapeutic, light-curable, synthetic biomaterial. They are supposed to allow native dental stem cells from teeth to repair and regenerate dentin. Research shows that the dental fillings currently common in dentistry are deadly to cells and, therefore, are incompatible with the pulp tissue inside the tooth. For now, the scientists involved in this study have been exceptionally recognized for their soon-to-be huge discovery—even the Royal Society of Chemistry is awarding them.

Still Testing….
For many of us, this is, indeed, news to make us smile, but not so fast. At this point, cell cultures are still being tested in labs and will soon be tested on rodents. The good news is that the stem cells could very well be the solution to ending root canals; however, unfortunately, it’s still unknown when this procedure could be applied to humans, and it could take years of testing and research for it to be introduced into modern dentist’s’ practice. However, for now, the research is successful, and it’s just a matter of time before this becomes a reality.

Why Is the New Research So Important?
As said earlier, the materials currently used in dental care to fill a patient’s tooth normally have content that is harmful to oral cells. With this new scientific discovery, scientists say they are hopeful they will put an end to that. They are also hopeful that this technique will recreate parts of a patient’s tooth in a safe and a natural way. They are also confident the use of stem cells could end the painful, loud, anxiety-causing drilling method of doing root canals.

Imagine what this could do. More and more people may actually want to be checked and treated since this new method will be painless and, most importantly, will not let impurities in your mouth. Business will also be good for dentists.

So, should we still be treated with traditional root canals until this procedure is released?

While we wait for this new discovery procedure to be made publicly available to treat humans, there is still hope. Currently, lasers are used in root canal therapy while using high pressure plus water in getting rid of dead or infected oral tissues and infections. With this new awaited method, those dreadful thoughts we always get when planning to see a dentist will be gone.

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.

Dental Coverage For Seniors Can Be Difficut to Find

It is no secret that aging is not a pleasant experience. It takes a toll on your general well-being including your teeth. Unfortunately, older people seeking dental services face considerable challenges because they cannot rely on their Medicare coverage.

According to an analysis by American Dental Association between 2011 and 2014, over a third of seniors with incomes below 200% of the federal poverty level, equivalent to an annual income of $23,000 had untreated tooth decay.

Dr. Michael Helgeson, CEO of Apple Tree Dental explained the cause of this is due to the fact that almost every senior after reaching the age of 65 has to pay for dental out of pocket.

Apple Tree is a non-profit organization based in Minneapolis and it operates a total of eight clinics in both California and Minnesota targeting underserved seniors. It also has mobile clinics that provide onsite dental care services at nursing homes and other elder care facilities.

“Medicare does not cover dental care unless it is among the services received in a hospital. However, a senior citizen can have some dental coverage under the Medicare Advantage Program, though it is very minimal and the range of services varies. The plan is more of a loss leader meant to attract people.” Says Dr. Judith Jones, a dentistry professor at Boston University.

Somehow, the elderly  are victims of success in dentistry. Water fluoridation daily tooth brushing along with regular dental visits have led to the improvements in oral health. Today, more than 60% of the elderly living in nursing homes still have their teeth unlike in the early 20th century when people in their 30s and 40s had lost most of their teeth.

But all teeth require care without which, teeth problems will lead to pain which in turn limits the type of food one eats. Conversely, loose the teeth allow bacteria to enter the body.

According to Jones, poor oral health is a source of suffering and embarrassment to low-income seniors without access to dental care.

With no insurance coverage and limited income, seniors are forced to skip dental visits even though they may have overflowing dental issues such as difficulty with chewing and biting, painful and dry mouths, not to mention damaged teeth which leads them, many times,  to avoid interaction or even smiling.

Medicaid, a program created by the federal government to provide free medical services for low-income people covers children dental care but adult dental coverage is spottier. Most states offer emergency dental care to all people with Medicaid but there are eight states that do not offer dental benefits to adults. This is according to a study by Oral Health America.

“It’s not a worthwhile investment for seniors to purchase private dental coverage due to the high premiums and copays.” said Marko Vujicic, vice president of American Dental Association Health Policy Institute.

Low-income seniors only have a few options when it comes to dental care. Federally funded  health centers may offer senior dental services based on one’s income and Apple Tree may try and help a small number of seniors living in their service regions but they are simply a band-aid of sorts.

Dr. Judith Jones recommends Medicare to add a dental benefit for seniors providing diagnostic as well as preventive dental services and seniors needing costly restorative work like bridges and crown can copay. More work still needs to be done in order to make dental care affordable for all seniors.

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.

What You Don’t Know About Gummy Vitamins Can Hurt You

With modern day parenting, it’s hard to ensure that your children get a healthy, nutritious meal. Parents are super busy with work, chores, errands and caring for the kids, making it almost impossible to have a home cooked meal most nights of the week. As a result, parents sometimes rely on prepackaged foods or fast food, which is not always a healthy option. The kids don’t seem to mind, but you know they could be eating better.

As a parent you are left wondering, how do I give my children the nutrients they need when I am unable to cook a healthy and nutritious meal for them? Many parents have opted to give their children supplements such as vitamins. Since most children do not like swallowing tablets, the most common children’s vitamins are gummy vitamins. Unfortunately, they have a number of drawbacks. These vitamins may give your children the nutrients they are lacking from their diet but they are not the best option for good oral health.

High Sugar Content

Gummy vitamins are packed with more sugar than chewable vitamins or even the multivitamin you swallow. Compared to standard multivitamins, gummy vitamins have 7 times more sugar. It’s no secret that the sweetness and flavoring are meant to make them palatable. If your goal is to have your kids eat sugar-free or low sugar foods, then this definitely not the best option for you.

Today’s children tend to lead more sedentary lives than previous generations. With the dawn of the internet and video games, kids just aren’t getting outside and exercising like they used to. With childhood obesity on the rise, parents need to be more mindful than ever about the amount of sugar and calories their child’s diet contains. Sugary gummy vitamins are some of the worst offenders.

The Sticky Truth

Though gummy vitamins have a higher sugar content compared to other vitamins, it’s not as high as most of the gummy snacks children normally eat. This might tempt some parents to dismiss the sugar content in gummy vitamins and keep buying them out of sheer convenience. Before you do that, here’s something else you need to know.

Gummy vitamins have a sticky consistency which makes them stick in teeth longer than standard chewable vitamins. It can stick for a whole day and could possibly cause cavities. The sugar sits between the child’s teeth till the child brushes their teeth. Even then, it’s impossible to know if your child has sufficiently removed all of the sticky matter from their teeth. If this happens for weeks or even months, it can lead to cavities.

Healthier, Better Alternatives

Although vitamins are a good supplement for children and adults, gummy vitamins are not the best choice. If you need chewable vitamins, choose powdery instead of sticky ones. Once your children are comfortable with swallowing pills, switch to supplements they can easily swallow and save yourself from the constant worry about them getting cavities. Your children may not like the less sugary chewable vitamin tablets, but you need to remember that it is a much healthier choice. A small amount of drinking water is enough to remove the powder left in your child’s mouth after chewing the pill. To create a routine, give the children the chewable vitamin at the same time every day.

Proper Tooth Care

Choosing the right vitamin is the first step towards proper dental care. You should also find a good dentist, like Dr. Mott,  and have your children get a check-up once in every 6 months. Ensure that your children floss and brush their teeth twice daily. They should brush their top teeth for a minute and the same should follow for the bottom.

If you absolutely can’t do away with gummies, then ensure that you give your children their vitamin just before they brush their teeth. Avoiding the negative side of these vitamins will go a long way in keeping your family’s smiles bright.

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.

 

Bossier Dentistry: 6 Tips To Get Your Kids to Brush Their Teeth

Kid’s Dental Gadgets

Taking care of your kids’ dental needs isn’t terribly difficult. It’s just another routine to add to the schedule. However, it is terribly important. Any dentist will tell you that starting early and teaching your children healthy habits will ensure their lifelong dental health.

It is normal for toddlers to be hyped and challenging about night-time rituals, but this not an excuse for bad oral hygiene. Promoting dental health should always start early so that future problems can be averted.

Start As Soon As They’re Born

Even your tiny baby isn’t safe from harmful bacteria. At the second trimester of pregnancy, your baby will already have 20 primary teeth, and bacteria can’t wait to get at them. They’re inside the jaw, and that’s why you can’t see them. But, just because you can’t see them doesn’t mean they aren’t there.

You don’t have to brush your baby’s teeth. Just run a damp washcloth over their gums after feeding. Once you start to see visible teeth, you can start brushing, but use an extra-soft toothbrush that’s meant for babies.

Caring For Your Toddler’s Teeth

It’s a well-known fact that most toddlers don’t like to sit still while Mommy or Daddy sticks a toothbrush in their mouth. Your toddler will have their “baby teeth,” and even though they’re going to fall out, proper dental care is essential. Whenever possible, brush them lightly with water only before they go to sleep. A deep brushing isn’t necessary, but make sure to pick out any leftover food.

For toddlers, what they eat is more important than regular brushing. Keep them away from sugary foods that’ll damage teeth and gums. Make sure they get plenty of calcium, especially from milk. This is what they need to grow strong, healthy teeth for a lifetime of great smiles.

Great Kid’s Dental Gadgets

There are a number of kid’s dental gadgets that help make brushing fun. Some of our favorites are Spinbrush Tooth Tunes, Crayola’s Timer Lite Toothbrush, the Brush DJ app, and the Twooth Timer. If your child is a challenge at brushing time, these may be a huge help.

First Visit To The Dentist

At age 2, it’s time for the first visit to the dentist. It can be a harrowing experience for the younger children, but you can turn it into a little adventure. One thing you can do to prepare your child for the dentist is to take them along when Mommy or Daddy goes. This way, they can watch what happens and see that it’s not so bad. Just don’t scream in agony or anything like that!

Usually, with young kids, dentists will show them all the fun little gadgets they have. They pay “take them for rides in the chair,” or start off by making a game out of counting teeth. Your dentist is used to having small children, and they’ll know how to set them at ease.

Get Into Regular Check-Ups

Once your child has seen the dentist for the first time, it’s time to start regular check-ups. It’s critical to monitor child’s brushing at young ages, to make sure that they develop good brushing habits. Regular visits not only clean your kids’ teeth and look for potential problems, but they also help in educating your children about brushing and caring for their teeth. Teaching them to take it seriously is half the battle.

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.

Are Veneers a Good Option for Me?

What is veneer placement?

Does your smile need a makeover? Veneer placement is used by dentists for a wide array of cosmetic enhancements such as teeth whitening and a number of orthodontic adjustments. Developed over 100 years ago, veneers have gained popularity in cosmetic dentistry. Recently, technological advancements have made veneers more natural and convenient. Modern types of veneers are similar to natural dental enamel. Moreover, new digital imaging systems allow dentists to develop near-perfect dental restorations that resemble the natural shape and color of the patient’s teeth. Veneers produce excellent results when combined with advanced dental treatment options such as dental crowns and teeth whitening.

Who should use veneers?

Patients who are considering veneer placement typically want to address a number of cosmetic and structural issues concerning their teeth, including:

  • Cracks
  • Chips
  • Minor misalignment
  • Gaps between teeth
  • Discoloration

Moreover, patients who want to have veneers should meet the following criteria:

  • Be committed to good oral care and hygiene
  • Have good oral health
  • Have specific cosmetic procedural goals
  • Have enough healthy enamel

Who would not be considered a good candidate for veneers?

Patients with dental conditions such as gum disease, tooth decay, and canal infection are not eligible for veneer placement procedures. Since the process involves removal of a layer of enamel, it is not advisable for these individuals to have this particular procedure done. People who have bruxism, a condition where patient excessively grind their teeth and clench their jaws, may not qualify for veneers. The strong force of bruxism puts excess strain on the veneers, which can potentially cause them break off.

Are veneers a good option for you?

This treatment offers a number of benefits to patients. Why are veneers a more popular choice than other alternatives?

Increased confidence: Having a veneer placement procedure done by your dentist can boost your self-confidence as well as emotional well-being. Patients who feel proud about their teeth are more likely to smile. Studies show that smiling has a direct positive impact on emotions.

Oral health benefits: Veneers can boost the overall health of your teeth. They provide strength to damaged teeth. In this case, the veneer will provide better oral health to the patients. However, it should be noted that veneers do not restore weakened or severely damaged teeth.

Encourage oral hygiene: Veneer placement promotes good dental hygiene. Patients with enhanced teeth have a greater tendency to practice good oral care and maintenance. During the consultation and veneer placement process, the dentist will provide you with the best advice on how to protect your teeth.

Are there risks associated with veneers?

Just like any other medical procedure, veneer placement has some risks associated with it. Generally speaking, the risks are rare in most cases and aren’t considered to be worrisome

Tooth sensitivity: the procedure involves removal of enamel that can lead to permanent sensitivity of the tooth when it comes in contact with cold or hot temperatures.

Dental damage: the enamel removal process may damage the underlying dentin. Moreover, poor fitting of veneers can lead to dental misalignment which results in discomfort while eating.

Veneer placement is a perfect way to improve your dental appearance.You should always consider consulting a reputable dentist, like Dr. Mott,  who will provide you with expert advice about the procedure. Veneer placement is a good option that will not only give you a stunning smile but can also boost the health of your teeth.

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.

 

summer

Should Your Kids Get Braces During the Summer?

Many parents and their children feel that summer is the best time to get orthodontic work done. Some kids complain that they do not like being trammeled with getting braces in the middle of a semester. Not only can wearing braces lead to self-consciousness as they interact with their classmates, the effort required for cleaning and maintaining braces throughout the day can also seem like a little too much for a newbie during a long day at school.

Obviously, as a parent, it is important to reassure your child that wearing braces is nothing to worry or be self-conscious about, and that your kids look just as awesome as they always did when they are wearing their braces. However, parents may have other concerns about kids getting braces during the school year. For example, they may worry that orthodontist appointments take their kids out of school unnecessarily and thus prevent them from learning as effectively as possible.

Should your kids get braces during the summer?

There are three key reasons why the summer time is often the best time for your kids to get their braces fitted. The three points below suggest that summer is the smart choice as it fits better with your children’s comfort, their ability to keep their teeth and braces clean, and their schedules.

1. Keeping things comfortable

Braces are designed to be totally comfortable once your child has settled into wearing them. However, for the first few days of wearing braces, your kids may find that they experience some initial discomfort and particularly that their mouth aches a little. Relieving this discomfort will be much easier when they can simply relax at home with an ice pack rather than having to concentrate on their school work at the same time. In addition, if your kids mouths are aching due to the use of braces, it is best for them to eat soft foods such as soups and smoothies rather than crunchy apples or things like breadsticks or hard candy bars. However, these soft foods may not be readily available in the school lunchroom.

2. Keeping the braces clean

Cleaning teeth with braces on involves a little more work than cleaning teeth without braces. Your kids will need to come to grips with brushing not only the teeth but the braces themselves several times a day – their orthodontist will be able to show them how to do this. It is especially important to clean braces after meals, as food can get caught in them. Thoroughly cleaning braces is much easier at home, when your kids have more spare time and are not rushing from class to class during the day.

Dr Mott

Dr Chris Mott

3. Keeping up with their classwork

Getting braces fitted usually takes a series of orthodontic appointments: an initial consultation, the actual installation of the braces and then a visit to check that everything is going smoothly. That is three afternoons out of school – more if your appointments are at an awkward time or if your orthodontist lives far away. Thus, having braces fitted during the summer will provide the minimum amount of disruption to your child’s learning.

If you have any questions or concerns about your children’s teeth or are wondering whether or not your child needs braces, give Dr. Mott a call. We can schedule a cleaning or checkup for you as well.

snoring

Best Natural Ways to End This Annoying Sleeping Habit

Snoring may be annoying but it can sometimes be indicative of more serious underlying medical issues. If you are a snorer, it’s a good idea to see your doctor to try and find the origin of your snoring. Occasionally, people may simply snore for no apparent reason. Here are some natural ways to alleviate snoring and bring about a more peaceful night’s sleep.

Lose Weight

One of the top reasons people snore is because they are overweight. Those who are overweight have thicker than normal tissues in the throat. Thick tissue causes restricted airways. As you lose weight, this tissue will become thinner, resulting in better breathing while resting. Losing weight in a safe and healthy manner through a healthy diet and exercise regimen can help bring an end to snoring and promote overall health and wellness.

Elevate Your Head

Try to raise your head a bit while sleeping. If you lay completely flat, you will block your air passages, thus causing you to snore. Find pillows that give lots of support for your neck. Also, try your best to sleep on your side rather than your back. This also helps to ensure that your air passages are open.

Quit Smoking

If you smoke, stop immediately! Smoking has been found to be an incredibly dangerous habit in general and makes it difficult for you to breathe, which in turn causes snoring. Even after smoking for years, you will see a significant change in how you feel and also in your sleep shortly after you stop smoking.

Avoid Drinking Alcohol

Try to avoid drinking alcohol close to bedtime. Alcohol causes the muscles in your body to relax so that the muscles in your throat start to collapse faster than normal. This can make snoring worse.

Use Steam Therapy

Try inhaling steam before bed. This can help open your airways. The more open your airways are the less likely you are to have issues with snoring.

Manage Meal Times

Dr Mott

Dr Chris Mott

Plan your meals so you do not eat for at least three hours before bedtime.Everyone should take the time to develop better eating habits and get plenty of exercise. There is a high probability of snoring if a full meal or even a snack is eaten up to four hours before going to bed. It is better to develop a habit of eating your meals well before bedtime, which in turn helps in proper digestion. In addition to this, it also helps in the weight loss process.

Snoring can be a big problem for some people. It may cause you and everybody else in your household not to get a good night’s rest, which can lead to sleepiness and irritation. Snoring may also cause major health issues. It increases your risk for diabetes, stroke, coronary disease, and high blood pressure. It also is a sign of sleep apnea, which can be a life-threatening condition.

It is a good idea to consult a medical professional if you think your snoring may be causing major issues. Dr. Mott offers a number of snoring appliances that can be extremely helpful in relieving snoring. If you would like to know more about these appliances, please contact our office. We’d be more than happy to provide more information and answer any questions you may have.

Operation Smile

What is Operation Smile?

Operation Smile is a global medical charity that offers free surgeries to children and young adults who are born with cleft palate and other deformities of the face. Operation Smile stands among the longest-serving charity organizations that are devoted to enhancing children’s lives and overall health. The organization offers surgical care as their primary service provided to children around the world.

History

The charity-based organization was founded by a craniofacial and plastic surgeon, William Magee. Partnering with his wife, Dr. William Magee founded the organization in 1982 in Virginia. Operation Smile was established to deliver surgical care in an environment with insufficient resources for such procedures. Partnering with recognized hospitals, Operation Smile volunteers train local medical specialists, offer the surgical care and donate equipment and supplies to medical facilities around the globe.

What is cleft palate?

Also known as cleft lip, this is a gap in the mouth that remains open throughout the pregnancy. The child is then born with an opening or a gap in the roof of the mouth or on the upper lip. As with any birth defect, the condition ranges from one child to another. Some have a unilateral condition that affects one side of the mouth, while others will suffer a bilateral cleft palate condition.

Various factors can cause cleft palate. The most common ones include poor nutrition, genetics, exposure to unsafe environmental hazards, and pre-existing medical condition of the parent. If not addressed early and with the proper approach, the cleft could pose a serious health condition to the child.

Who does Operation Smile help?

The organization was solely founded to offer surgical care and other medical services to children and young adults from resource-limited environments. Operation Smile only helps children that suffer from lip cleft or cleft palate, especially if they come from a family that cannot afford the surgery.

The charitable organization has registered offices in more than sixty countries. Operation Smile operates in all the major continents including America, Africa, Asia, Europe, and Australia. The headquarters is based in Virginia Beach, Virginia.

How can you help?

Many people are taking part in helping to enhance the services offered by Operation Smile. The organization accepts help in the form of volunteering and donation. It accepts volunteers to help in delivering medical care and other social work-related services directed to

Dr Mott

Dr Chris Mott

the community. For those that wish to become medical volunteers, you may need to present valid proof of licensure. This is done with professionalism to avoid jeopardizing the lives of the children and young adults. Other ways of helping the organization include the following;

• Volunteering as a medical record expert or a translator in non-English speaking communities.
• Hosting an awareness or fundraising event in your local community, under the mandate of the organization.
• Offer local administrative support in your community.
• Establishing a student club in your community.

These are ways or opportunities that are meant to boost the services of the organization and help it advance in its mission. Before you start any event, like a fundraising, ensure that you have been given permission by Operation Smile.

Downtown Shreveport dentistry: Stop Tooth Decay in it’s Tracks

Downtown Shreveport dentistry, Dr. Chris Mott, Explains How To Stop Tooth Decay in it’s Tracks

There are hundreds of different bacteria that live in our mouths without causing any harm. Unfortunately there are also many bad types of bacteria which can cause problems for us such as tooth decay. When plaque- a sticky film on teeth which harbors bacteria- doesn’t get removed from your teeth through regular brush and flossing it can lead to tooth decay and other complications to your dental health. But other than regular brushing, flossing, are there are things you can do to ensure that you don’t have to deal with tooth decay? Of course!

Use fluoride to strengthen your teeth and prevent tooth decay from building to a dangerous level. Fluoride water, toothpaste, gel, tablets or mouth rinses might be recommended by your doctor to avert to reverse cavities.

Children are more prone to cavities due to their diet and less disciplined brushing habits. Parents must be very careful of what they feed their tots to avoid creating an environment for bacteria to thrive. To help prevent cavities and tooth decay in your children, you should limit the number of snacks between meals, fruit juice and avoid sugary foods before bedtime especially if they have already brushed. As a parent it is your duty to teach your kids to brush their teeth until they can do it by themselves. Encourage them to brush at least twice a day and spit out all the paste to avoid dental fluorosis that comes from excess fluoride.

It is important to do your best to avoid cavities at home but it is also key to enlist a downtown Shreveport dentist such as Dr. Chris Mott. He is a licensed professional who has spent years dedicated to helping people prevent cavities and keep themselves healthy. He can offer practical solutions to patients.

Downtown Shreveport Dentistry, Dr Mott

Dr Chris Mott

Dr. Mott, an experienced downtown Shreveport dentist, offers advanced solutions such as sealants to protect the chewing surfaces of teeth upon which food particles get stuck. It is important to take children to see a dentist regularly so that they can get rid of dental plaque and check for early signs of tooth decay. Teach your child how to properly brush their teeth and schedule their next dentist appointment.

Cavities are a serious dental health issue that affects people of all ages and should not be ignored. Left untreated, they pose a serious health problem that could forever damage a child’s health and self-image. Cavities are associated with serious conditions like high blood pressure and heart disease. It is important to deal with cavities through the guidance of experts such as Dr. Mott, a local downtown Shreveport dentist.