Thursday, November 29, 2012

Special Care for Special Needs!

Patients with special needs are those who due to physical, medical, developmental or cognitive conditions require special consideration when receiving dental treatment. This can include people with autism, Alzheimer’s disease, Down syndrome, spinal cord injuries and countless other conditions or injuries that can make standard dental procedures more difficult.
Caring for a special needs patient takes compassion and understanding. While most dentists can accommodate for special needs patients, some dentists focus on meeting the needs and working with the limitations of these patients. If you, your child or someone you know has special needs, talk with your dentist to discuss your options.
Article taken from:

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

DDS and DMD: What They Mean!

If you’re looking to find a dentist you may notice that while most are listed with a “DDS”, some may be listed as “DMD”. They both mean the same thing—your dentist graduated from an accredited dental school.
The DDS (Doctor of Dental Surgery) and DMD (Doctor of Dental Medicine) are the same degrees. Dentists who have a DMD or DDS have the same education. It’s up to the universities to determine what degree is awarded. Both degrees use the same curriculum requirements set by the American Dental Association.

Did you know that the level of education and clinical training required to earn a dental degree is on par with those of medical schools?

Generally, three or more years of undergraduate education plus four years of dental school is required to graduate and become a general dentist. Upon completion of their training, dentists must pass both a rigorous national written exam and a state or regional clinical licensing exam in order to practice. In order to keep their licenses, they must meet continuing education requirements for the remainder of their careers so that they may stay up to date on the latest scientific and clinical developments. Additional post-graduate training is required to become a dental specialist, such as an orthodontist, periodontist or oral and maxillofacial surgeon.
Article taken from:

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Pregnancy and Your Gums

What is Gingivits?
Gingivitis is an inflammation of the gums that is caused when plaque accumulates in the spaces between the gums and the teeth. The accumulation of bacteria can lead to the loss of bone around the teeth and can eventually lead to tooth decay and tooth loss. More than 50 percent of adults have some form of gingivitis.

Pregnancy Gingivitis

During pregnancy, about half of all women (60 to 70 percent) experience a condition called pregnancy gingivitis. It is caused by an increase in hormone levels, which can exaggerate a woman's response to dental plaque in the mouth. This extra plaque may cause swelling, bleeding, redness and/or tenderness in the gums. Changes in the gums are most noticeable from the second month of pregnancy, reaching a maximum in the eighth month. To control the amount of plaque in your mouth and to prevent gingivitis, brush your teeth regularly – at least twice a day for two minutes – and floss your teeth every day. These actions help reduce the bacteria that can lead to pregnancy gingivitis.

How To Avoid Gum Disease

  • Brush thoroughly at least twice a day, preferably in the morning and at night
  • Take your time; you should spend at least two minutes brushing your teeth
  • Be sure to use anti-plaque toothpaste to help protect your teeth from decay and gingivitis
  • Rinse thoroughly after brushing to get rid of bacteria in hard-to-reach places
  • Remember to floss daily to help avoid the build up of bacteria
  • Eat a healthy, balanced diet
  • Avoid sugary snacks
  • Continue to visit your dentist regularly (once it is safe for the baby)

Step Up Your Oral Care

Maintaining the health of your teeth and gums is necessary to avoid the risk of developing pregnancy gingivitis and to get your on the path to better long-term oral health. By investing in a rechargeable electric toothbrush, you can begin to take the steps to reduce the amount of plaque in your mouth and prevent the onset of gum disease.
Article taken from:

Monday, November 26, 2012

Dental Fear May Start With Parents!

Fear of visiting the dentist is a frequent problem in paediatric dentistry. A new study confirms the emotional transmission of dentist fear among family members and analyses the different roles that mothers and fathers might play.

A new study conducted by scientists at the Rey Juan Carlos University of Madrid highlights the important role that parents play in the transmission of dentist fear in their family.

Previous studies had already identified the association between the fear levels of parents and their children, but they never explored the different roles that the father and the mother play in this phenomenon.

América Lara Sacido, one of the authors of the study explains that "along with the presence of emotional transmission of dentist fear amongst family members, we have identified the relevant role that fathers play in transmission of this phobia in comparison to the mother."

Published in the
International Journal of Paediatric Dentistry, the study analysed 183 children between 7 and 12 years and their parents in the Autonomous Community of Madrid. The results were in line with previous studies which found that fear levels amongst fathers, mothers and children are interlinked.

A key factor: the father

The authors confirmed that the higher the level of dentist fear or anxiety in one family member, the higher the level in the rest of the family. The study also reveals that fathers play a key role in the transmission of dentist fear from mothers to their children as they act as a mediating variable.

"Although the results should be interpreted with due caution, children seem to mainly pay attention to the emotional reactions of the fathers when deciding if situations at the dentist are potentially stressful," states Lara Sacido.

Consequently, transmission of fear from the mother to the child, whether it be an increase or reduction of anxiety, could be influenced by the reactions that the father displays in the dentist.

Positive emotional contagion

Amongst the possible implications of these results, the authors outline the two most salient: the need to involve mothers and especially fathers in dentist fear prevention campaigns; and to make fathers to attend the dentist and display no signs of fear or anxiety.

"With regard to assistance in the dental clinic, the work with parents is key. They should appear relaxed as a way of directly ensuring that the child is relaxed too," notes the author.

"Through the positive emotional contagion route in the family, the right attitude can be achieved in the child so that attending the dentist is not a problem," she concludes. Article taken from:

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Going Natural with Natural Toothpaste

Did you know that your dental health goes beyond the whiteness of your teeth? Rosenzweig says, "Poor gum health is the #1 cause of adult tooth loss. More than 75 percent of Americans over 35 years old will develop some form of gum disease during their lifetime."

She warns, "Your teeth can be filled, patched, straightened and whitened, but gum disease weakens their foundation. If left uncontrolled, gum disease can progress to tooth loss." If you take care of your gums, you will be taking care of your teeth. The Natural Dentist wants you to have a healthy mouth and has the perfect line of natural dental products to help you get the most eco-friendly smile possible! Here is why you should be using natural dental products.

What are the advantages of using natural dental products?

According to Rosenzweig, choosing natural oral care is as important as the food you eat, the products you put on your skin and all the other products you choose for a healthy home environment. She says,"Everyone reads food labels these days, but do you know what's in your mouthwash and toothpaste? Pick up an oral care product and read [the ingredient list]."

Axe the alcohol. The leading brand of mouthwash on the market contains a high percentage of alcohol (21 to 26 percent), meaning your morning swish could be 50 proof! That is more than some alcoholic beverages – beer averages 5 percent (10 proof) and most wine contains 12 percent alcohol (24 proof).

"Alcohol is not necessary to kill germs," says Rosenzweig. You can naturally eradicate germs with herbs. She adds, "The Natural Dentist Healthy Gums Mouth Rinse has clinical proof that it kills germs with natural antimicrobials, like echinacea, goldenseal and grapefruit seed extract."

And you won't miss that characteristic burn you get with regular mouthwash. The Natural Dentist mouth rinse contains aloe vera gel and coconut oil, which help to soothe mouth and gum tissue.

Do away with dental detergent. Do you want detergent in your mouth? According to Rosenzweig, sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS), an ingredient found in regular toothpastes, is a detergent that makes toothpaste foamy.

She says, "It can irritate the mouth and gums, especially for those who suffer from canker sores. The Natural Dentist Healthy Teeth and Gums Toothpaste comes in five delicious formulas (including Sparkle Berry Blast for kids and Whitening Plus Peppermint Twist for adults), all SLS-free, with a natural low-foam ingredient that comes from coconuts."

Avoid additives and preservatives. You avoid artificial ingredients in your food, and you can now avoid them in your oral care, too. Rosenzweig warns that regular toothpastes and mouth rinses contain artificial additives such as Blue #1, Yellow #5 or other FD&C colorants, saccharine, benzoic acid and artificial flavors. The Natural Dentist products contain no artificial sweeteners, dyes, preservatives or flavors.

However, The Natural Dentist products do contain sodium fluoride, which is a natural fluoride (from fluoride ore) and is accepted by the American Dental Association for cavity prevention. If you use The Natural Dentist products, you can brush your teeth and rinse your mouth with natural fluoride.

Top tips for healthy gums and teeth

1. Daily care. The key to dental health is a daily routine of brush, floss and rinse. The American Dental Association recommends that you do all three.

Rosenzweig adds, "It may sound like the same old everyday message, but that's why they call it a 'routine!' And it works – more Americans are keeping their natural teeth for their entire lifetime. Unless you like the thought of being fitted for dentures or expensive implants, a consistent oral care regimen is always the best advice."

2. Use the best products. Rosenzweig says, "Consider the idea that premium oral care products are worth paying for. Dental care is expensive and dental insurance doesn't cover much these days. Choose the best for your family, and consider investing in natural oral care products."

3. Schedule regular dental exams. Dental visits are typically right up there with public speaking on the list of things people try to avoid. You might be able to dodge the podium, but regular dental visits are essential.

"If you avoid check-ups because you don't love your dentist, it's OK to switch," Rosenzweig says. Ask friends and family for a recommendation. And if fear is what keeps you out of the chair, there are options.
She adds, "In addition to updating their technical expertise and equipment, many dentists are adding all kinds of extras to their practice, from soothing music, videos and massage to customized sedation, all designed to make you more comfortable."

4. Think of your dental hygienist as your dental personal trainer. Rosenzweig says, "The dental hygienist is the person on your dental team who gives advice about taking care of your teeth at home. When she cleans your teeth, she sees the whole 'hit and miss' story of what you have been doing between visits. Ask for advice and tips." And aside from you, there is no one who knows your mouth better and is as invested in helping you have excellent dental health and a brilliant smile.
Article taken from:

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Inlays and Onlays: What are they?

Inlays and Onlays are similar to tooth fillings as they are restorative treatments used to repair small tooth fractures, tooth decay, and other sorts of damaged surfaces of the teeth. An inlay is similar to a filling and lies within the center of a tooth. When the damaged tooth instead requires covering of one or several points of the tooth or even full coverage of the biting surface, this is described as an onlay. Benefits of Inlays and Onlays are that they are not likely to discolour over time as tooth-coloured resin fillings have a tendency to. Dental inlays are better at sealing teeth to keep out bacteria and are therefore preferred when the cavity is between the teeth as they are extremely stable and durable.
Dental inlays and onlays have the same function as traditional dental fillings, but have a more permanent result. Whereas dental fillings are molded into place during one single dental visit, inlays and onlays need at least two visits to the dentist since the material is fabricated indirectly in a dental lab before being fitted and bonded to the tooth.
An inlay is similar to a filling and lies within the center of a tooth, this is called an inlay. These are custom-made to fit the cavityand then cemented into place. When the damaged tooth instead require inclusion of one or several points of the tooth, or even full coverage of the biting surface, this is described as an onlay. An onlay is therefore a more extensive reconstruction, but will still conserve more of the tooth structure in comparison to a crown.
An inlay or onlay is usually completed within two visits to the dentist. At the first visit, the dentist examines and prepares the damaged tooth. A molded impression is then taken and sent to a dental laboratory, where the new inlay or onlay is fabricated after the measures of the impression. To protect the tooth until the next visit, a temporary inlay or onlay is created.
During the second visit, the provisional inlay is removed and the permanent inlay/onlay is placed. After making sure that the inlay/onlay is perfectly fitted, the material is bonded onto the tooth. Thereafter, the margins are polished.
The advantage with fillings are their durability in comparison to traditional fillings. Whereas fillings have been known to actually reduce the strength of a tooth by up to 50%, inlays and onlays can actually increase the strength of a tooth with up to 75%. With proper hygiene and dental care, they can last between 10 and 30 years.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Information about Wisdom Teeth

Wisdom teeth, also referred to as third molars, get their name by being the last teeth to come in during young adulthood. As part of a dental visit, your dentist will examine you to determine if your wisdom teeth are healthy and properly positioned.

Every patient is unique, but in general, wisdom teeth may need to be removed when there is evidence of changes in the mouth such as:

  • pain
  • infection
  • cysts
  • tumors
  • damage to adjacent teeth
  • gum disease
  • tooth decay (if it is not possible or desirable to restore the tooth)
Your dentist or specialist may also recommend removal to prevent problems or for others reasons, such as when removal is part of an orthodontic, restorative or periodontal treatment plan.
In addition, the condition of your mouth changes over time. Wisdom teeth that are not removed should continue to be monitored, because the potential for developing problems later on still exists. As with many other health conditions, as people age, they are at greater risk for health problems and that includes potential problems with their wisdom teeth. Regular dental visits are important so your dentist can evaluate not just your wisdom teeth but your overall oral health to help you prevent and manage dental disease and achieve optimal oral health.
Article taken from:

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Root Canal Answers

What is a Root Canal?
Root canal treatment is the removal of the tooth's pulp, a small, thread-like tissue in the center of the tooth. Once the damaged, diseased or dead pulp is removed, the remaining space is cleaned, shaped and filled. This procedure seals off the root canal. Years ago, teeth with diseased or injured pulps were removed. Today, root canal treatment saves many teeth that would otherwise be lost.
The most common causes of pulp damage or death are:
  • A cracked tooth
  • A deep cavity
  • An injury to a tooth, such as a severe knock to the tooth, either recent or in the past
Once the pulp is infected or dead, if left untreated, pus can build up at the root tip in the jawbone, forming an abscess. An abscess can destroy the bone surrounding the tooth and cause pain
How is a Root Canal Done?
Root canal treatment consists of several steps that take place over several office visits, depending on the situation. These steps are:
  • First, an opening is made through the back of a front tooth or the crown of a molar or pre-molar.
  • After the diseased pulp is removed (a pulpectomy), the pulp chamber and root canals are cleaned, enlarged and shaped in preparation for being filled.
  • If more than one visit is needed, a temporary filling is placed in the crown opening to protect the tooth between dental visits.
  • The temporary filling is removed and the pulp chamber and root canal permanently filled. A tapered, rubbery material called gutta-percha is inserted into each of the canals and is often sealed into place with cement. Sometimes a metal or plastic rod is placed in the canal for structural support.
  • In the final step, a crown is usually placed over the tooth to restore its natural shape and appearance. If the tooth is very broken down, a post may be required to build it up prior to placing a crown.
How Long Will the Restored Tooth Last?
Your treated and restored tooth/teeth can last a lifetime with proper care. Because tooth decay can still occur in treated teeth, good oral hygiene and regular dental exams are necessary to prevent further problems.
As there is no longer a pulp keeping the tooth alive, root-treated teeth can become brittle and are more prone to fracture. This is an important consideration when deciding whether to crown or fill a tooth after root canal treatment.
To determine the success or failure of root canal treatment, the most relied-upon method is to compare new X-rays with those taken prior to treatment. This comparison will show whether bone continues to be lost or is being regenerated.
Article taken from:
PulpDamage PulpRemoval Filled
Tooth pulp damaged by a deep cavity. The pulp is removed and the root canals cleaned before filling. The chamber is filled and

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Help For Your Dental Anxiety

Not many people really like going to the dentist. But for some people, the thought of going to the dentist can bring on such a fear that they avoid getting the dental care they need. In fact, nearly half of adults skipped the dentist in 2009, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
What Is Dental Anxiety?
Some people's fear of going to the dentist or getting dental procedures done is so severe that they lose sleep at night and worry excessively about what might happen at the dentist's office, says Kimberly Harms, DDS, consumer advisor and spokesperson for the American Dental Association, and a dentist in private practice in Farmington, Minn.
Dental anxiety is common, with up to 15 percent of Americans avoiding seeing a dentist due to fear.
Dr. Harms says that dental anxiety is more common in older people, who may have experienced dental care when technologies were not as advanced as they are today.
"Children today have very few negative dental experiences, so we tend to see fewer problems among younger people," she says. But the older you are, the more likely you are to have had a dental procedure when anesthesia was less effective, or not used, and when dentists focused less on patient comfort.
"Great strides have been made in focusing on making the patient comfortable," says Harms.
How to Overcome Dental Anxiety
For people who have dental anxiety, the following strategies can help calm your fears:
  • Communicate with your dentist. Harms says that the best thing you can do to get over your dental anxiety is to talk to your dentist about it. "A lot of patients don't feel comfortable talking with their dentists on a one-on-one level," she says. But remember that your dentist is a patient, too. In fact, Harms herself has dental anxiety that stems from her childhood dentist not using anesthesia when filling cavities. "If you are anxious about something," she says, "come right out and talk to the dentist about it."
  • "Talk" with your hands. It can be difficult to speak when you have a mouth full of dental tools, so talk with your dentist before your procedure about how you will communicate should you have any discomfort or pain. Harms tells her patients to raise a hand if they feel any pain or sensation during a dental procedure. That way she can adjust the anesthesia and make sure the patient is comfortable.
  • Get distracted. In Harms' office, patients are provided with video glasses so that they can watch movies during dental procedures. Watching television, listening to the radio, or just letting your mind wander can help ease some of your anxiety.
  • Consider medication. If you are having a dental procedure that requires anesthesia, rest assured that anesthesia is much more effective today than it was in the past. For some patients, a sedative or nitrous oxide can also help calm their nerves, says Harms.
  • Take a break if you need it. Harms says that some patients need to take breaks during dental procedures, when anxiety builds up or they start to feel claustrophobic. If you feel like you need a break, let your dentist know.
  • Ask about sedation dentistry. In some areas, there are dentists who practice sedation dentistry, which is where you get dental care under partial or full loss of consciousness. Harms says that most patients probably don't need sedation dentistry, but for those whose dental anxiety is so severe that they refuse to get dental care any other way, it may be an option.
It could very well be that the unknown is what you fear, so don’t be afraid to ask questions before a procedure and make sure that your dentist does everything he or she can to make you feel comfortable during your visit. And getting regular dental care is vital to your oral health, so it's well worth the effort.

Monday, November 12, 2012

What Is A Canker Sore?


Canker sores facts

  • Canker sores are small ulcer craters in the lining of the mouth.
  • The sores are usually found on the movable parts of the mouth.
  • The ulcers can be caused by a number of conditions.
  • The treatment of canker sores depends on the cause.

What are canker sores?

Canker sores are small ulcer craters in the lining of the mouth that are frequently painful and sensitive. Canker sores are very common. About 20% of the population (one out of five people) have canker sores at any one time. Canker sores are also medically known as aphthous ulcers or aphthous stomatitis.
Women are slightly more likely than men to have recurrent canker sores. It can occur at any age, but it is more commonly seen in teenagers. Genetic studies show that susceptibility to recurrent outbreaks of the sores is inherited in some patients. This partially explains why family members often share the condition.
Canker sores are generally classified into three groups based on size.
  1. Minor sores have a diameter of 1millimeter (mm) to 10mm. They are the most common (80% of all canker sores) and usually last about 7-10 days.
  2. Major sores (10% of all canker sores) have a diameter of greater than 10mm and they may take anywhere between 10-30 days to heal. They may leave a scar after they heal.
  3. Herpetiform ulcers (10% of all canker sores) are formed by a cluster of multiple small individual sores (less than 3mm). They also usually heal within 7-10 days.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Tooth Decay – Also called Cavities, Dental Caries

You call it a cavity. Your dentist calls it tooth decay or dental caries. They're all names for a hole in your tooth. The cause of tooth decay is plaque, a sticky substance in your mouth made up mostly of germs. Tooth decay starts in the outer layer, called the enamel. Without a filling, the decay can get deep into the tooth and its nerves and cause a toothache or abscess.

To help prevent cavities

  • Brush your teeth every day with a fluoride toothpaste
  • Clean between your teeth every day with floss or another type of between-the-teeth cleaner
  • Snack smart - limit sugary snacks
  • See your dentist or oral health professional regularly

Above article from:

Jeffrey Cohen, DMD
4324 Forest Hill Boulevard
West Palm Beach, FL 33406
Tel:(561) 967-8200

Friday, November 9, 2012

Cosmetic Dentistry

Who doesn't want a perfect smile? While few people have one naturally, almost anyone can get one with the help of their dentist. In addition to orthodontic treatment, which can straighten your teeth, recent advances in dental materials and techniques offer near-perfect teeth that are almost as strong as the originals.

Things your dentist can do to improve your smile include

  • Bleaching to make teeth whiter
  • Repairing chips or rough spots with fillings that match your teeth
  • Filling cavities with tooth-colored materials
  • Reshaping teeth that don't match the others
  • Closing gaps between teeth
  • Covering broken teeth with porcelain crowns

Above article from:

Jeffrey Cohen, DMD
4324 Forest Hill Boulevard
West Palm Beach, FL 33406
Tel:(561) 967-8200

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Diode Lasers: Many Effective Dental Uses!

A Diode Laser works wonders to help with many soft tissue procedures including contouring of the gum tissue for a more close fitting crown or filling,  incisions and excisions of tissues that are red, puffy and which bleed easily. They work around implants and metals without excessive heat or loss of bone healing. Bleeding can be controlled quickly and effectively.  This helps with patients with hemophilia or those on blood thinners.These lasers can also be used with patients who have a pacemaker without any ill effects.
They are also commonly used to help the dentist heal ulcers or canker sores on the tissues inside the mouth.
They have also been found to help heal deep "pockets" of bone loss so the patient can keep these areas clean and healthy at home between visits!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Bleeding gums

Bleeding gums can be a sign that you are at risk for, or already have, gum disease. However, persistent gum bleeding may be due to serious medical conditions such as leukemia and bleeding and platelet disorders.


It is important to follow the instructions from your dentist in order to maintain healthy gums. Improper brushing and flossing technique may actually irritate or traumatize the gum tissue.


Bleeding gums are mainly due to inadequate plaque removal from the teeth at the gum line. This will lead to a condition called gingivitis, or inflamed gums.

If plaque is not removed through regular brushing and dental appointments, it will harden into what is known as tartar. Ultimately, this will lead to increased bleeding and a more advanced form of gum and jawbone disease known as periodontitis.

Other causes of bleeding gums include:

Home Care

Visit the dentist at least once every 6 months for plaque removal. Follow your dentist's home care instructions.

You should brush your teeth gently with a soft-bristle toothbrush after every meal. The dentist may recommend rinsing with salt water or hydrogen peroxide and water. Avoid using commercial, alcohol-containing mouthwashes, which aggravate the problem.

Flossing teeth twice a day can prevent plaque from building up. Avoiding snacking between meals and reducing carbohydrates can also help. Follow a balanced, healthy diet.

Other tips:

  • Avoid the use of tobacco, which aggravates bleeding gums.
  • Control gum bleeding by applying pressure directly on the gums with a gauze pad soaked in ice water.
  • If you have been diagnosed with a vitamin deficiency, take recommended vitamin supplements.
  • Avoid aspirin unless your health care provider has recommended that you take it.
  • If side effects of medication are irritating, ask your doctor to recommend another medication. Never change your medication without consulting your doctor.
  • Use an oral irrigation device on the low setting to massage the gums.
  • See your dentist if your dentures do not fit correctly or if they are causing sore spots in your gums.

Above article from:

Jeffrey Cohen, DMD
4324 Forest Hill Boulevard
West Palm Beach, FL 33406
Tel:(561) 967-8200