Should I Go Electric? The high price tag that comes along with an electric toothbrush often gets people asking “Is it really worth it?” There are many benefits to using an electric toothbrush. Electric toothbrushes minimize technique errors that occur with manual toothbrushes. People often miss hard to reach areas because they are rushing or just don’t know proper brushing technique. Electric toothbrushes are designed so that all you have to do is position the toothbrush head in the proper areas and it will do all the work for you by performing the proper brushing motions on its own. When positioning the brush head, you want to feel it between the teeth and also along the gum line. Electric toothbrushes can help remove or prevent surface staining. Who doesn’t want whiter teeth? It also lowers your risk for toothbrush abrasion. People typically brush too hard and for too short of a period of time. With built in timers, the toothbrush will let you know when it’s time to move on to another area. And with the toothbrush doing all the work, you can stop all that forceful scrubbing.

 Philips Sonicare vs Oral-B Spinbrush

I am partial to the Philips Sonicare because of the toothbrush head shape and brushing motion, but this is really just a personal preference. Both work great. You just have to pick which better suits you. sonicareoral-b   ]]>

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Often times I hear a patient refer to being “knocked out” for procedures such as extracting wisdom teeth or placement of implants.  Truth is, to “knock out” a patient we would have to perform General Anesthesia.  This is when a patient is intubated, and is done because he or she no longer has reflexes to breath on their own. Fotolia_35347877_XS-resized-600-300x200We rarely do this for routine dental procedures.  In fact, when a patient refers to being “knocked out”, they may be describing “twilight” or conscious sedation. Conscious sedation is a form of sedation in which patients still have their reflexes during the procedure.  What this means is they breathe and move on their own while being sedated.  In our office we use an intravenously delivered sedative,  90% of the time our patients do not remember the procedure performed. The level of sedation used allows our patients to remain comfortable through out the procedure, without anxiety, while remaining aware enough to respond to stimuli and questions if need be. This allows us to provide a variety of services with relative ease and comfort to the patient.]]>

Woman with toothache

1. Gum recession:

When the gum tissue around a tooth recedes, the root becomes exposed.  The root is a very sensitive part of the tooth that when exposed to cold, hot, or sweets it can create sensitivity.   Solution: An immediate answer to this problem is  the use of desensitizing products such as toothpaste (Sensodyne) and mouth rinse (ACT) which can help take the edge off the sharpness felt in the tooth.  These products take a few weeks to work.   A long term solution may be bonding or gingival graft (surgically placing gum tissue)  over the exposed root.  These are procedures  in which we simply cover the exposed root causing sensitivity.

2. Teeth Whitening Products:

These days teeth whitening products are in virtually every type of product we use to keep our teeth healthy.  They are in mouth rinses, toothpaste, gum, etc.  The active ingredients that whiten our teeth can leave us with sensitivity after use of these products.  Solution: Very simple, use products without the whitening additive or at least cut back.

3. Grinding/Clenching:

Grinding and clenching your teeth can lead to gum recession which can lead to sensitivity.  Grinding and clenching also causes trauma to the tooth and can make it hypersensitive to hot, cold, sweets, etc. This is because the nerve inside the tooth becomes inflamed from the trauma.    Solution: Wear a night guard when you sleep and be conscious of keeping your teeth apart during the day.

4. Rough Teeth Cleaning:

Some times a hygienist or dentist can be a little overzealous when cleaning a patients teeth.  If a protective layer (cementum) is scrapped off of the roots of your teeth, you may experience sensitivity for a few weeks until that protective layer is reformed.  Solution: Wait it out, it could take a few weeks to improve.  Also,  mention to the provider who cleaned your teeth what your experience was like afterwards. We hope these offered solutions help with that annoying tooth sensitivity that just will not go away.   But always remember to keep up with your regular dental check ups and if sensitivity persists for longer than 2 weeks let your dental provider know!]]>

01218_TS_iosBrand2_280 The Academy of General Dentistry just released a free interactive game: Toothsavers, available online as an app for Android and iOS devices. The game is for ages 3-6 and was designed to get kids in the routine of brushing twice a day for two minutes each time.   As many of you know well, it is a very daunting task at times to motivate children to take care of their own teeth.  Any feedback on the use of this app and how it is working with your kids would be greatly appreciated, just post your comments on our Facebook page.]]>

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The promise is perfectly clean teeth in all areas of your mouth in 6 seconds.  This new toothbrush brushingteethcreated by Blizzident touts that by creating a custom made tray with bristles specifically fit to your dentition, you can have a clean healthy smile. By using technology, similar to Invisalign, custom made trays are fabricated with bristles positioned to clean your whole mouth at the same time. In order to create the action needed to brush your teeth all you have to do is simply…. chew. By chewing on this specialized appliance you are allowing the bristles to massage the teeth and gums and remove plaque. Its definitely an interesting idea and I am eager to see the studies on this new technology. My main concern is efficiency of this toothbrush, as well as possibility of damaging the gum tissue. And lastly, how cost effective is this brush? Is it easy to replace the bristles or the appliance in its entirety? There is no greater tool to a dentist than an easy to use and incredibly efficient toothbrush! Follow this link to learn more about this interesting invention. ]]>

It’s Halloween time again, If you are a parent or simply a health conscious adult, you may be fotolia_17582018_xs-resized-600wondering how can you get through this holiday season without overloading on sugary treats. So in the spirit of the season here are our dental friendly Halloween treat suggestions!

  • If you are looking for treats to give out this Halloween season there are many dental friendly treat options such as: almonds packs, pretzels, or popcorn.
  • Also, there are plenty of non candy treats available to give out such as stickers and other Halloween themed toys.
  • And finally, if you choose to indulge here are some tips on how to lower your chance of getting a cavity this Halloween season:
    • Give yourself or your child a set number of pieces of candy you can eat per day as to limit the sugar intake each day.
    • Try and limit the number of times you expose your teeth to candy in a day. It is better to eat multiple pieces at once, rather than one piece at time, multiple times during the day.
    • Try to brush and floss an hour after snacking on candy.
    • If you’re unable to brush and floss, try and drink water. Although it won’t clean all of the sugar away from your teeth and is not a guarantee that you won’t get cavities, it will help cleanse your mouth, helping to reduce the possibility of cavities. Sugar-free gum is also another good trick. Like water, it helps to remove residual sugar from your mouth, while also stimulating saliva flow. Saliva is a natural protector against cavities.

From time to time I like to read articles from my Alma Mater, University at Buffalo School of Dental Medicine, recently I came across an interesting article.  Dr. Sebastian Ciancio, DDS has recently published an article about the use of a nasal spray to anesthetize upper teeth as opposed to dental injections.Dentist or Doctor With Needle The study is centered around how safe and effective using a nasal spray to numb the upper teeth rather than an injection to the area. This study is now in the second phase of research by the Food and Drug Administration. So what does this mean for your dental future? Well, there is a possibility that in the future you may be able to forgo the need for injections with some procedures. This is a great option for dentists and needle phobic patients alike and may help patients seek dental care more frequently. Things that remain to be seen is duration of numbness, localization of numbness as well as possible side effects, and long term effects. But in general there are many great things on the horizon for dentistry and I, along with many others, am eager to see what is in store!  ]]>

As dentists, we already know and talk about the importance of periodontal or gum health.Fotolia_37296172_XS-200x300 Periodontal disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in adults. Recently studies have been released linking the bacteria that causes gum disease to various systemic health problems. Most recently, a study was completed that found a link between the bacteria present gum disease and Alzheimer’s. This study has found the bacteria commonly present in periodontal disease, Porphyromonas gingivalis, was present in four of ten Alzheimer’s patients and, zero of ten patients with out Alzheimer’s. This study is just a jumping off point for more research on the association of this bacteria and its link to this debilitating illness. In general, oral health does play a key role in your overall comprehensive health. Studies continue to show that maintaining healthy teeth and gums can give you more than fresh breath. By maintaining a good home care regimen and regular hygiene appointments with your dentist you can keep your teeth and gums healthy. Check out and vote for our entry into the Intuit Small Business Big Game Sweepstakes!