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The Truth About Flossing

The American Dental Association and most dentists have been touting the benefits of dental flossing for decades. Studies show that flossing helps to promote good dental and oral health. However, some people do not floss their teeth consistently, or ever. They claim it is tedious, inconvenient, or time-consuming. But flossing only needs a minute or two of your time to make a huge contribution to your overall health.

Breath Control

By removing food particles stuck between your teeth and under the gum line, you can get rid of decaying organisms. If these are left in place, they will begin to produce bad breath as they break down.

Reduced Gum Inflammation

Not flossing your teeth allows oral debris to build up below the gum line. This can lead to swollen, painful gums that bleed during brushing or subsequent flossing. Regular flossing can help to keep this from happening.

Fewer Cavities And Tooth Loss Prevention

Teeth and gums that are impacted by food, tobacco, or other substances can cause dental decay and gum inflammation, which often leads to tooth decay or eventual tooth loss. Flossing removes the irritants, thus keeping gums a healthy environment for teeth to remain free of decay and cavities.

Healthier Organs

Saliva is an effective pre-digestive treatment for food and other substances that enter the body through the mouth. However, it also facilitates the circulation of these substances that are left in the mouth through saliva’s natural flow that can carry oral debris through your circulatory system to body organs. There they can build up over time and cause inflammation or problems in other areas of the body.

Convenience

Flossing is inexpensive and can be done privately at home or in a public restroom. It takes just a minute or so, and the results make most people feel better about themselves.

Few personal grooming habits are as easy, fast, and effective as dental flossing. Ask your dentist for recommended products or flossing tips to make the most of this important hygiene aid.

5 Foods That Can Whiten Your Teeth

When you are trying to brighten your smile, it’s time to think about the different foods and drinks that come in contact with your teeth. While there are plenty of things that can cause your teeth to be discolored, such as coffee, tobacco or wine, there are certain foods and drinks that can help improve your smile. At Fairfield Dental Arts, we want you to have a smile that makes you proud.

Strawberries Contain Malic Acid

Despite being a red berry that many may think will stain your teeth, strawberries are a great food to eat when you are trying to whiten your teeth naturally. Strawberries contain malic acid, which works as a natural astringent on your teeth and removes stains.

Nuts and Seeds

Nuts and seeds have abrasive qualities when chewing that help clean your teeth in between brushing. Most nuts or seeds will gently exfoliate your teeth, giving you a brighter smile.

Apples and Other Crunchy Fruit

When you crunch into an apple, you are helping to make your gums healthier. Also, there is a significant amount of water found in apples and other crunchy fruit, which helps wash away bacteria that can discolor your teeth.

Carrots and Celery

Carrots and celery do more than provide your body with vitamins and minerals. When you eat celery or carrots raw, you will be cleaning your teeth naturally. Both work as a mild abrasive and promote saliva production which will help prevent your teeth from staining.

Cheese Promotes Tooth and Gum Health

Dairy provides calcium to strengthen your teeth and reduce the occurrence of enamel loss. Hard cheeses have an abundance of calcium, which is going to help the bones throughout your body stay healthy.

When you want to take care of your teeth with the foods you eat, it’s time to do more than avoid sugary snacks and drinks. Pay attention to what you are eating and look for foods in their natural state for their mild abrasive properties.

To learn more about taking good care of your oral health, come and see us. Give us a call today at 203-254-3780 schedule an exam.

Veneers Vs. Lumineers

Beautiful, white, flawless teeth are rarely natural these days with the many options offered for cosmetic dentistry.

Of course, we think all smiles are beautiful, but we understand many issues can make you feel self-conscious about your smile; Issues including spaces and gaps between teeth, uneven teeth, crooked and crowded teeth, chipped, worn or stained teeth, and more.

At Fairfield Dental Arts, we offer the most modern techniques for cosmetic dentistry, including Porcelain Veneers and Lumineers. These options might sound similar, but they are very different in a variety of ways.

What Are Porcelain Veneers?

Porcelain veneers are custom porcelain shells that bond to your teeth to create a lasting, durable, and stain-resistant smile. They can change the current size, shape, color, and position of your teeth.

What Are Lumineers?

Lumineers are sometimes referred to as an “Instant Smile Makeover.” They are an ultra-thin porcelain veneer that is bonded to the natural teeth. No shots or drilling is necessary.

How Are They Similar?

Both options were created to improve your smile and share a lot of the same characteristics including:

  • Improving dental appearance to rid misaligned teeth
  • Enhancing the color of the smile, making it brighter and whiter
  • Covering gaps and cracks between the teeth
  • Easy to maintain
  • Stain-resistant
  • Custom-made to fit your mouth
  • Made out of porcelain
  • Similar in price

How Are They Different?

They may seem alike in many ways, but they also have some big differentiators you need to keep in mind. These include:

Porcelain Veneers

  • Require reshaping and some removal of current teeth
  • Permanent removal of enamel under the veneer
  • Thicker porcelain

Lumineers

  • Mildly invasive
  • No reshaping or tooth removal is required
  • Enamel is left undamaged
  • Thinner porcelain

Cosmetic dentistry is all about personal preference. When it comes to your mouth, your smile, and what’s best for you, Fairfield Dental Arts is here to help weigh the options. Contact us today for more information or to schedule your appointment!

The Difference Between Crowns, Fillings, Inlays, & Onlays

Whether you have a cavity, a tooth that’s cracked, a toothache, missing teeth, dentures, or are in need of a root canal or filling, Fairfield Dental Arts is happy to serve you with one of our restorative dental care services.

When it comes to crowns, fillings, inlays, and onlays, theses are the differences:

Crowns

A dental crown covers the tooth to restore its strength, shape, size, and in some cases, appearance. There are a few reasons someone might need a crown, but the most common include cracked or decayed teeth.

There are different types of crowns that you can choose from depending on the tooth’s condition, the money you are willing to spend, and the look you are going for.

A Partial Crown

A partial crown is made to cover only a portion of the tooth. This is necessary when only part of the tooth is decaying, infected, broken, or cracked.

A Full Crown

A full crown is made to cover the entirety of the tooth. When the tooth is no longer salvageable, a full crown can cover what is left to essentially replace the tooth without removing the root.

Fillings

Fillings restore a damaged tooth closing off any space where bacteria could enter to help prevent further tooth decay. These are the most common for smaller cavities and decayed areas.

Inlays

A dental inlay is a type of restoration that covers a specific part of the tooth. This process fills in the space between cusps, the rounded edges at the center of the surface of your tooth.

Onlays

Dental onlays cover a more extensive area and usually last longer than fillings. It restores more than a filling but less than a crown in large cavities.

If you are wondering which is right for your tooth, come and see us! We will take a look at your mouth and provide professional advice while keeping your budget in mind. Contact us today!

Try This Toothpaste Quiz!

At first glance, toothpaste may seem like just a product you were taught to use to brush your teeth; however, what you find out while taking this fun toothpaste quiz just might surprise you and give you a greater appreciation of this messy glop that does way more than just make orange juice taste funny.

True or False?

Toothpaste kills plaque and bacteria on your teeth.

Answer

True: Toothpaste contains an ingredient called PVM/MA copolymer, which helps antibacterial agents, like triclosan, adhere to your teeth and oral tissues longer.

True or False?

A professional dental cleaning allows your toothpaste to work better.

Answer

True: A professional dental cleaning cleans the tooth’s surface, which allows the ingredients in the toothpaste to work better.

True or False?

Toothpaste does not have an expiration date.

Answer

False: The FDA recommends all toothpaste to have an expiration date to ensure that the fluoride in it remains at its peak.

True or False?

Gel toothpaste is the best.

Answer

False: All toothpaste, whether it’s gel, powder, or paste, works great provided they contain fluoride, which helps prevent cavities.

True or False?

Toothpaste was discovered in the year 1960.

Answer

False:: Toothpaste is actually believed to have been discovered in 5000 BC by the early Egyptians.

True or False?

Fluoride is the only active ingredient in toothpaste.

Answer

False: Though all toothpaste must contain the active ingredient fluoride in order to be ADA approved, some toothpastes also contain other active ingredients, such as those needed to reduce tartar build-up, lessen teeth sensitivity, and whiten teeth etc.

True or False?

I should wait until my child turns two to brush their teeth.

Answer

False: You should brush your child’s teeth as soon as the first tooth appears. However, avoid letting them brush their teeth on their own until they reach about age 6 because too much fluoride at an early age can cause white spots on their teeth, also known as fluorosis.

As you can see, there is more to toothpaste than meets the eye. There are various types of toothpaste on the market to address various dental concerns. To find the best toothpaste for you or to schedule a professional dental cleaning to help make your toothpaste more effective, simply contact Fairfield Dental Arts.

We are a leading comprehensive dental team that specializes in quality dental services for your entire family.

Stop Acid Erosion

The enamel, which is the strongest substance in the body, is a hard, somewhat clear exterior layer that shields your teeth from everyday wear. It also keeps you from feeling temperature extremes and safeguards against chemical and acid damage.

Unfortunately, once the enamel is worn down it doesn’t grow back; therefore it is important to stop acid erosion in its tracks.

What are the Main Contributors of Acid Erosion?

Sugar

Plaque and other bacteria in your mouth feed on sugar, which they use to make acids that eat away at the enamel. And it can get worse if you don’t immediately clean your teeth after eating sugary foods.

Acidic Foods and Drinks

Citrus fruits, fruit juice, carbonated drinks, sour candies, and wine have high acid levels which easily erode your enamel. Therefore, be sure to drink plenty of water while consuming acidic foods and drinks in order to dilute its acidic effect.

Stomach Acids

Vomiting, and sometimes acid reflux, also referred to as GERD, causes stomach acids to flow up into the mouth which allows the acid to reach your teeth.

Some Signs of Acid Erosion

  • Discolored teeth
  • Sensitive teeth
  • Rough or uneven edges on the teeth
  • Transparent teeth
  • Rounded teeth

Preventing Acid Erosion

Good dental care is the best defense against acid erosion. However, some other things you can do to help preserve your enamel include:

  • Limiting the amount of acidic foods and drinks you consume
  • Rinsing your mouth with water immediately after consuming acidic foods and drinks
  • Using a straw for acidic drinks so it doesn’t come in contact with the teeth
  • Enjoying a piece of cheese or drink milk immediately after meals to neutralize acids
  • Chewing sugar-free gum and candy
  • Using fluoride toothpaste and mouthwash
  • Seeking treatment for acid-related illnesses

If your teeth have become discolored, worn down, or chipped, we can protect your damaged tooth with tooth bonding, which provides a protective covering for your teeth. In more serious cases, we can cover the tooth with a crown to protect it against further damage.

At Fairfield Dental Arts, we specialize in a wide range of dental services, including dental implants and more, to help preserve the beauty of your teeth for your healthiest smile yet. Simply contact us or visit our office!

The Anatomy of a Mouth

The human mouth is quite an interesting adornment to the front of our faces, but it has a myriad of components that make it quite complex despite its simple facade. However, it is good to be familiar with the anatomy of a mouth so that you will be able to notice any problems and maintain a good degree of health. In fact, many sometimes consider the mouth as the key to all good health overall. At Fairfield Dental Arts we certainly take pride in being able to help you with any issues and to keep your mouth looking good.

The structure is complex, but it starts with the mouth cavity that is divided into the oral cavity proper and the vestibule. This is also the beginning of the alimentary canal, also known as the gastrointestinal tract, which is where food is consumed and works its way through as it is digested. The outer portion between the teeth, lips, and gums is the vestibule.

Then, the alveolar process is the hard ridge of bone that holds the teeth in their sockets and is the front border of the oral cavity proper. In the back, near the throat, it is bordered by the isthmus of the fauces which is where the uvula is located. On the roof of the mouth, there is the hard and soft palate in the front and back respectively. The floor then has the tongue and some other mylohyoid muscles that help with processing food as well as talking and other natural activities.

The mucous membrane of the mouth helps to keep things moist as is generally required for comfort. The teeth are separated into the maxillary and mandibular divisions. Maxillary denotes the upper ones while mandibular is for the lower, and they are both attached to portions of the trigeminal nerve. This gives them the feeling and such so that any irregularities might be noticed due to pain sensations, and it helps to keep everything in functional order. The lips denote the outside of the mouth, and they represent the transition from the inside mucous membrane to the external skin of the human body.

Overall, the human mouth is an excellent representation of how the species has evolved and developed over the years. Be sure to get regular checkups by the dental experts so that you can maintain a healthy lifestyle without the discomfort that some overlooked issues might cause. More information can be found at Fairfield Dental Arts here.

 

7 Most Common Dental Problems Adults Face

When it comes to dental problems, they are often more common than you’d think. The older we get, the more our enamel weakens, the gums recede, and other issues that come with aging start to occur. Most of these problems can be prevented with proper oral care like flossing, brushing twice daily, using an antibacterial mouthwash, and coming in for your appointments, but it’s important to educate yourself to help prevent poor oral health.

These are the top 7 most common dental problems we see at Fairfield Dental Arts:

Tooth Decay and Sensitivity

As you know, cavities are brought on by bacteria that is built up and erodes the enamel. This can cause the tooth to become extremely sensitive or even fall out.

Bad Breath

Bad breath can be caused by bad oral hygiene, cavities, gingivitis, dry mouth, and more.

Gum Disease

Also known as periodontal disease and gingivitis, gum disease occurs when the gum line is infected, inflamed, or irritated.

Bad Teeth

Crooked, unattractive, or stained teeth is very common with adults. Many adults never had braces, were injured, ate poorly, or never had proper dental treatment.

Dental Emergencies

Toothaches, cracked or chipped teeth, abscesses, and other problems that need immediate attention.

Sores

Mouth sores come in a variety of ways. From canker sores to cold sores and blisters, these can be extremely uncomfortable.

Oral Cancer

This is a serious disease that is brought on by tobacco use, drinking alcohol, STI’s, STD’s, and more. This is serious. If you think you could have oral cancer, contact us immediately.

If you are an adult and experiencing any of these problems or have questions and concerns, please contact us today!

Steps to Take After Injuring a Tooth

Uh, Oh! A newly injured chipped tooth? Don’t panic yet, because we’re here to give you all the information needed. If you have a chipped, cracked, missing, or displaced tooth, here’s what you need to do:

Evaluate

Is the injury just to your tooth, or is it affecting other parts of the face? If it’s other parts of the face, contact your doctor or go to the Emergency Room. Don’t wait and let the problem worsen.

If it’s just the tooth, there are some options depending on the severity! These are the most common:

Craze Line

This is a small crack along along the enamel. This is not a dental emergency and has no sensation. Try to avoid any additional stress on the tooth and make sure to bring this up at your next appointment.

Enamel Fracture

An enamel fracture is a chip along the edge of the tooth. Contact us to schedule an appointment. It doesn’t have to be immediately but at your earliest convenience. Take OTC medications to reduce any swelling in the gum, and place wax over the chipped area. This will help prevent the tooth from injuring other areas of the mouth.

Displaced of Loose Teeth

If the tooth is knocked out of place or moved from the original area, this is considered a dental emergency. Contact us immediately and schedule an appointment! At home, you should start on a soft or liquid diet, take an OTC medications to reduce swelling, and apply a cool towel to the area that is swollen.

At-Home Remedies

In some cases, at-home remedies won’t work or help, but in most, you can try over-the-counter medications to reduce swelling, cold towels to help numb the area, wax to protect the mouth, night guards to help limit the injury during sleep, and reducing stress on the teeth.

Contact Us

If you are experiencing any kind of pain from an injured tooth, it’s important to contact us and come see us as early as possible. Don’t let the injury worsen by no being proactive! We are here to help with any tooth emergencies and ensure quality oral care!

Home Remedies to Get Rid of Gingivitis

Gingivitis is really just  inflammation of the gums. This can occur after poor oral hygiene and result in loss of teeth, disease, and other conditions. There are multiple options to help treat gingivitis, so here are our best at-home remedies!

Brush Your Teeth Effectively

When brushing your teeth, make sure you are taking the proper steps for the right amount of time. You should be brushing no less than two times, two minutes per day. Brush the entire tooth, and don’t be afraid to get close to the gum line.

Use Mouthwash

Mouthwash helps clear the mouth of the bacteria you missed during brushing. The fluid can easily get in between the teeth and low into the gums. Make sure the mouthwash is antibacterial and contains fluoride.

Floss Regularly

Flossing is something that is often overlooked or put on the back burner when it comes to oral care. Don’t forget to floss as it can remove unwanted plaque build=up and other debris in the mouth.

The Right Toothpaste

There are special toothpastes made specifically for people with Gingivitis. Give one of these a try adding it to your daily routine.

If these at-home remedies aren’t working, come in and see us for more information!