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Posts for category: Oral Health

KevinBaconsMango-SlicingTrickandOtherWaystoRidFoodBetweenYourTeeth

During the COVID-19 quarantines, stir-crazy celebrities have been creating some “unique” home videos—like Madonna singing about fried fish to the tune of “Vogue” in her bathroom or Cardi B busting through a human-sized Jenga tower. But an entertaining Instagram video from Kevin Bacon also came with a handy culinary tip: The just-awakened film and TV actor showed fans his morning technique for cutting a mango to avoid the stringy pulp that gets between your teeth. After cutting a mango in half, he scored it lengthwise and crosswise to create squares and then turned the mango inside out for easy eating.

With his mango-slicing video garnering over a quarter-million views, the City on a Hill star may have touched a nerve—the near universal annoyance we all have with food stuck between our teeth. Trapped food particles aren't only annoying, they can also contribute to a bacterial film called dental plaque that's the top cause for tooth decay and gum disease.

Unfortunately, it's nearly impossible to avoid stuck food if you love things like popcorn, poppy-seed muffins or barbecue ribs. It's helpful then to have a few go-to ways for removing food caught between teeth. First, though, let's talk about what NOT to use to loosen a piece of stuck food.

A recent survey of more than 1,000 adults found that when removing something caught between our teeth, we humans are a creative lot. The makeshift tools that survey respondents said they've used in a pinch included twigs, safety pins, screwdrivers and nails (both the hammer and finger/toe variety). Although clever, many such items are both unsanitary and harmful to your gums and tooth enamel, especially if they're metallic or abrasive.

If you want a safe way to remove unwanted food debris, try these methods instead:

Brush your teeth: The gentle abrasives in toothpaste plus the mechanical action of brushing can help dislodge trapped food.

Use dental floss: A little bit of dental floss usually does the trick to remove wedged-in food—and it's easy to carry a small floss container or a floss pick on you for emergencies.

Try a toothpick. A toothpick is also an appropriate food-removing tool, according the American Dental Association, as long as it is rounded and made of wood.

See your dentist. We have the tools to safely and effectively remove trapped food debris that you haven't been able to dislodge by other means—so before you get desperate, give us a call.

You can also minimize plaque buildup from food particles between teeth by both brushing and flossing every day. And for optimally clean teeth, be sure you have regular dental office cleanings at least twice a year.

Thanks to Kevin Bacon's little trick, you can have your “non-stringy” mango and eat it too. Still, you can't always avoid food getting wedged between your teeth, so be prepared.

If you would like more information about effective oral hygiene practices, please contact us or schedule a consultation. To learn more, read the Dear Doctor magazine article “Daily Oral Hygiene.”

By Anderson Dental
December 30, 2020
Category: Oral Health
Tags: Dental Bridge  

Missing teeth create gaps that can be unsightly and embarrassing. They can also irritate the mouth, unease in your bite while increasing mental and emotional distress. At Anderson Dental, our dentist may recommend a dental bridge to restore your smile, ability to speak and chew, as well as prevent remaining teeth from shifting out of place. These cosmetic restorations will not only benefit your appearance, but they'll give your oral health an additional boost. Please schedule a consultation with Dr. Jon Anderson, Dr. Brad Anderson, or Dr. Breding in our Fargo, ND, office today to get started.

What Is a Dental Bridge?

A dental bridge comes in different types. At Anderson Dental, our dentist will determine the kind that's best for your particular situation after performing an oral examination and taking X-rays. A dental bridge is a fixed artificial tooth that's supported by two crowns on each side to bridge the gap between one or more missing teeth. It's also considered an alternative to dental implants.

Benefits of a Dental Bridge

One or multiple teeth can devastate self-esteem and make you self-conscious about how others perceive you. One of the benefits of a dental bridge is that the procedure is non-surgical and involves minimal recovery time. They can also last a long time with proper at-home care and annual cleanings in our Fargo, ND, office. A dental bridge is also safe, comfortable, and has a durable reputation. Another advantage is that they prevent further oral problems from developing.

If you're tired of frowning, missing out on your favorite foods, and looking for a solution, consider treatment. You may be a candidate for a dental bridge, and Dr. Jon Anderson or Dr. Brad Anderson will confirm this during your initial visit.

For more information about other services provided at Anderson Dental, visit our website or call (701) 232-1368 for an appointment in our Fargo, ND, office.

By Anderson Dental
December 16, 2020
Category: Oral Health

Your dentists in Fargo, North Dakota can help you keep your teeth white

Did you know you can do a lot at home to keep your smile white? It’s true! In fact, just a few simple tricks and tips can help you keep your smile looking white, bright, and beautiful. Your dentist can help too. Dr. Jon Anderson and Dr. Brad Anderson at Anderson Dental in Fargo, North Dakota offer professional teeth whitening treatments, so you can enjoy a white smile.

One of the main culprits of stains on your teeth is tobacco use. Whether it’s smoking cigarettes, pipes, or cigars, or even chewing tobacco, using tobacco products will lead to a dark, stained smile. The best advice is to quit using tobacco products. They are hard on your teeth and deadly to your body.

Next, try limiting your intake of coffee, tea, and red wine. If you continue to drink these beverages, try to brush your teeth afterward to limit the amount of pigment left on your teeth. You can also switch to white wine instead of red. At the very least, try to rinse your mouth out after drinking these beverages to limit the stains left behind. You can also try drinking through a straw, to keep the liquid off of your teeth.

Highly pigmented foods can also cause stains on your teeth. Healthy foods like blueberries and blackberries can make your teeth dark. Tomato sauce is another food that can cause yellowish stains on your teeth. Again, try to brush or at least rinse your mouth out after eating foods with a high amount of pigment.

It's natural to get stains on your teeth. It’s also natural for your smile to look yellow as you get older. That’s because as you age, your enamel becomes thinner, allowing you to see the layer underneath, called dentin. This dentin layer is naturally yellow, so the more dentin you can see, the yellower your teeth will look.

Your dentist can help you regain your white smile with professional teeth whitening treatment. At Anderson Dental, they offer two highly effective methods to whiten your teeth:

  • An in-office treatment, which is the quickest way to a bright smile, because it takes only about an hour.
  • A take-home treatment, which is a kit containing everything you need to whiten at home.

To find out more about professional teeth whitening and other cosmetic dentistry services, call Dr. Jon Anderson and Dr. Brad Anderson of Anderson Dental in Fargo, North Dakota at (701) 232-1368. Call now, and get started on a beautiful white smile today!

KeepYourChildsFluorideIntakeataSafebutEffectiveLevel

Fluoride is an important part of your child's dental development. But if children take in too much of this important mineral, they could experience enamel fluorosis, a condition in which teeth become discolored with dark streaking or mottling.

That's why it's important to keep fluoride levels within safe bounds, especially for children under the age of 9. To do that, here's a look at the most common sources for fluoride your child may take in and how you can moderate them.

Toothpaste. Fluoridated toothpaste is an effective way for your child to receive the benefits of fluoride. But to make sure they're not getting too much, apply only a smear of toothpaste to the brush for infants. When they get a little older you can increase that to a pea-sized amount on the end of the brush. You should also train your child not to swallow toothpaste.

Drinking water. Most water systems add tiny amounts of fluoride to drinking water. To find out how much your water provider adds visit “My Water's Fluoride” (//nccd.cdc.gov/doh_mwf/Default/Default.aspx) online. If it's more than the government's recommendation of 0.70 parts of fluoride per million parts of water, you may want ask your dentist if you should limit your child's consumption of fluoridated drinking water.

Infant formula. Many parents choose bottle-feeding their baby with infant formula rather than breastfeed. If you use the powdered form and mix it with tap water that's fluoridated, your baby could be ingesting more of the mineral. If breastfeeding isn't an option, try using the premixed formula, which normally contains lower levels of fluoride. If you use powdered formula, mix it with bottled water labeled “de-ionized,” “purified,” “demineralized” or “distilled.”

It might seem like the better strategy for preventing fluorosis is to avoid fluoride altogether. But that can increase the risk of tooth decay, a far more destructive outcome for your child's teeth than the appearance problems caused by fluorosis. The better way is to consult with your dentist on keeping your child's intake within recognized limits to safely receive fluoride's benefits of stronger, healthier teeth.

If you would like more information on fluoride and your baby's dental health, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Tooth Development and Infant Formula.”

By Anderson Dental
November 26, 2020
Category: Oral Health
Tags: oral cancer  
4ThingsYouCanDoToProtectOralHealthDuringCancerTreatment

Despite momentous strides in recent years in the fight against cancer, treatments can still disrupt normal life. Both radiation and chemotherapy have side effects that can cause problems in other areas of health—particularly the teeth and gums.

If you or a loved one are undergoing cancer treatment, it's important to get ahead of any potential side effects it may have on dental health. Here are 4 things that can help protect teeth and gums while undergoing cancer treatment.

Get a preliminary dental exam. Before beginning treatment, patients should have their dentist examine their teeth and gums to establish a baseline for current dental health and to treat any problems that may already exist. However, patients should only undergo dental procedures in which the recovery time can be completed before starting radiation or chemotherapy.

Be meticulous about oral hygiene. Undergoing cancer treatment can increase the risks for developing tooth decay or gum disease. That's why it's important that patients thoroughly brush and floss everyday to reduce bacterial plaque buildup that causes disease. Patients should also reduce sugar in their diets, a prime food source for bacteria, and eat “teeth-friendly” foods filled with minerals like calcium and phosphorous to keep teeth strong.

Keep up regular dental visits. The physical toll that results from cancer treatment often makes it difficult to carry on routine activities. Even so, patients should try to keep up regular dental visits during their treatment. Besides the extra disease prevention offered by dental cleanings, the dentist can also monitor for any changes in oral health and provide treatment if appropriate.

Minimize dry mouth. Undergoing cancer treatment can interfere with saliva production and flow. This can lead to chronic dry mouth and, without the full protection of saliva against dental disease, could increase the risk of tooth decay or gum disease. Patients can minimize dry mouth by drinking more water, using saliva boosters and discussing medication alternatives with their doctor.

It may not be possible to fully avoid harm to your oral health during cancer treatment, and some form of dental restoration may be necessary later. But following these guidelines could minimize the damage and make it easier to regain your dental health afterward.

If you would like more information on dental care during cancer treatment, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Oral Health During Cancer Treatment.”