7 Surprising Causes Of Bad Breath

bad breath treatment Durham

People with chronic bad breath know the embarrassment and frustration associated with this condition. In this post from Durham Dental Group we look at possible causes, some that are often overlooked:

  1. Poor oral hygiene
  2. Digestive problems
  3. Systemic infection
  4. Bacteria on dentures
  5. Gum disease
  6. Food particles on tonsils
  7. Dry mouth

We can help you with this uncomfortable issue. If your bad breath is the result of inadequate oral hygiene, you’re in luck—this is one of the easiest types to treat. If you have visited our dental blog before, you know step one: make sure you brush for a full three minutes and floss before you climb into bed.

People with no idea how long they brush can set a timer (there is probably one on your smartphone). In addition to cleaning tooth surfaces, scrub your tongue! Then take the time to carefully floss around each tooth to wash away the plaque between your teeth and keep your gums healthy.

Some people brush after each meal to prevent particles of food from sitting on their teeth during the day. Excellent idea! In addition to freshening your breath, consistent oral hygiene will improve your health.

Possible dental causes are: a cavity, a broken crown, or gum disease. If we suspect that your bad breath is related to a non-dental condition, such as a respiratory infection, you will be referred to an appropriate medical professional.

Treating bad breath starts with a visit to Durham Dental Group. We offer general and cosmetic dentistry. Schedule your next checkup today.

Contact Durham Dental Group:

919-322-3585

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

202 W NC Highway 54 Ste 201
Durham, North Carolina
27713

 

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Are Toothpicks Good For Cleaning Teeth?

At Durham Dental Group, our dentists always remind patients how important it is to clean their teeth on a regular basis. Not just the front surfaces, but between the teeth, too. This is essential for cavity prevention.

What’s the best way to go about getting those narrow spaces between teeth? That’s an easy one: dental floss. Our rule of thumb is to brush your teeth twice a day, and floss at least once – ideally, just before bedtime.

What about during the day, though? You’ve just had lunch, or a mid-afternoon snack, and you can feel the gunk that’s stuck between your teeth. It isn’t always easy to pull out dental floss in the middle of the day, especially if you’re in a meeting or some other appointment.

How about a good old-fashioned toothpick? They’re quick and convenient, easy to carry around, can be subtle, and have pointy tips that are good for digging into tight spaces.

Our quick answer? No. In fact, we frown on toothpicks. For one thing, they don’t do a very good a job compared to other options. For another, it is not unheard of for people to get splinters in their gums when a piece breaks off. You might also poke into your gums by accident.

But the bottom line is that they don’t clean off plaque. Which brings us back to those other options: when you’re out and about during the day, we recommend using an interdental cleaner. There are several types available at any grocery store: they’re usually made from a soft plastic with bristles on the end. They’re slender and compact, so you can slide them easily between your teeth to dislodge and remove food particles.

We’ll admit that chewing on a toothpick looks pretty cool. But they are not recommended for cleaning teeth. Use an interdental cleaner like those made by DenTek, or GUM. Floss picks are also good.

Above all, see us at Durham Dental Group for a professional cleaning and checkup every six months. Our services include general and pediatric dentistry. Schedule an appointment with us today.

Contact Durham Dental Group:

919-322-3585

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

202 W NC Highway 54 Ste 201
Durham, North Carolina
27713

 


Is Your Low-Carb Diet Giving You Dragon Breath?

bad breath treatment Durham

This post from Durham Dental Group focuses on a sometimes-unpleasant topic, bad breath. Many people mistakenly believe that it is always linked to poor brushing. The truth is that there are many causes of halitosis. We can help you pinpoint the cause of yours, and discuss how to cure it.

Your diet greatly impacts your breath. Because foods begin to be digested the second they enter your mouth, and because they are absorbed and distributed throughout the body, you probably will be able to smell strong foods like onions and garlic long after you’ve eaten them.

Therefore, using a mouthwash will only mask the smell. Constantly sucking on breath mints is also not smart. This may bring additional oral issues—especially if the mints have sugar. If you want real relief, you may need to avoid the strong foods altogether.

Additionally, many dieters find that their diet regimen is making it harder to keep their mouth fresh and clean. Low-carb and no-carb diets promote fat burning, but the the chemicals released during this process can lead to the side effect of bad breath. Increasing water intake can help alleviate this.

Lastly, flossing regularly is often the key to truly fresh breath. Many men and women don’t realize how much food can be stuck between their teeth, and this food can cause halitosis if it isn’t removed. More importantly, the food particles turn into plaque which can cause cavities and gum disease.

At Durham Dental Group, we want all our patients to enjoy fresh breath. Our services include general and cosmetic dentistry. Schedule your next cleaning and checkup with us today.

Contact Durham Dental Group:

919-322-3585

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

202 W NC Highway 54 Ste 201
Durham, North Carolina
27713

 

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Infant And Toddler Teeth Q&A

Durham pediatric dentistryThis post from Durham Dental Group is for new parents. You’ve got a lot of new responsibility and a lot to remember. Make sure pediatric dentistry is one of them.

Here is some Q&A about caring for baby and toddle teeth.

How should I clean my toddler’s teeth?
For infants, gently wash their gums with a piece of gauze or soft cloth. The ADA does not recommend any toothpaste for infants. When your child is three, a pea-sized amount (but no more!) is recommended. Young children rarely spit after you brush their teeth, they swallow. When your child’s teeth start to appear, you can use a very soft brush to softly wipe away food and liquid left on the teeth after feeding.

When should my child see a dentist for the first time?

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry advises parents to take their child to a dentist before their first birthday, or when their first tooth appears. This is vital for their oral health and also to help them become comfortable with a dentist from an early age.

What should I do if my toddler has a toothache?
First, call us to make an appointment. Before that you can rinse the sore tooth and surrounding gums with warm salt water. Never put aspirin directly on the tooth, not even children’s aspirin. If your child will let you, use a cold compress on the outside of the cheek to relieve swelling.

How can I prevent my toddler from getting cavities?

  • Have your child get a dental check-up every six months.
  • Brush your child’s teeth gently but thoroughly before they go to bed.
  • If possible, brush your child’s teeth after meals, or have them rinse with water.
  • Don’t let your child sleep with a bottle unless it only contains water.
  • Don’t let your child drink juice all day – it is best to have juice along with a meal.
  • Limit or avoid sugary snacks – especially gummy types that stick to the teeth. (A fresh apple is better than a pack of fruit snacks).
  • Consume acidic foods and beverages with meals to guard enamel.
  • If your child sucks his/her thumb after the age of three, talk to your dentist or pediatrician.
  • If your child grinds his/her teeth, seek guidance from your dentist or pediatrician.
  • Make sure your child has a healthy diet with all the necessary vitamins and minerals.
  • Follow your dentist’s or pediatrician’s recommendations regarding fluoride supplements and fluoridated water. Remember that too much fluoride is toxic.
  • Ask us about dental sealants.

Should I avoid dental x-rays of my child’s teeth?
No. Modern dental x-rays are extremely safe when standard procedures are followed. The diagnostic boon greatly outweighs the almost non-existent risk of detrimental radiation exposure.

If child’s baby teeth are widely spaced, does that mean their permanent teeth will be too far apart?

No, this is normal and does not necessarily mean that their permanent teeth will be spaced too far apart.

At Durham Dental Group we offer pediatric dentistry, and general and cosmetic dentistry. Schedule an appointment with us today.

Contact Durham Dental Group:

919-322-3585

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

202 W NC Highway 54 Ste 201
Durham, North Carolina
27713

 

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5 Reasons To See The Dentist

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This post from the dentist at Durham Dental Group has some important guidance about your dental health.

When we are young, we feel unstoppable. We think we will live forever, and we know more than our parents. But a funny thing happens. As we age, we realize that invincibility fades, forever isn’t as long as we thought, and our parents had a little more on the ball than we gave them credit for.

Here are five reasons to make the team at Durham Dental Group your partner in oral health.

Visit Durham Dental Group For the Truth.
Visiting the dentist regularly is one of the wisest moves a parent can make for their child. A child’s oral health is a journey of guiding and correcting. Healthy habits are formed over time. Perhaps last year it was about refraining from chewing ice, this year it’s about brushing at the base of the molars, and next year it will be about flossing daily. Best to get the bad habits repaired right away. The same holds true for adults. Regular visits can correct a course that may eventually lead to pain, gum disease, damaged teeth, or complete tooth loss. Potential problems are best discovered sooner than later.

Visit Durham Dental Group For the Atmosphere.
At Durham Dental Group the dentist makes it a point to ascertain your needs. Whether you have urgent concerns or just need a routine check up on the state of your oral health, we would like to be your first choice. We’ve got a staff second to none.

Visit Durham Dental Group For the Discussion.
Durham Dental Group delivers valuable assessment and discussion regarding family dentistry, general dentistry, and kids dentistry. We provide fresh, clear details regarding your treatment. You can count on cheerful care and first-rate oral treatment.

Visit Durham Dental Group For the Answers.

When you enter our doors, expect to get answers. What are the pros and cons of kids dentistry or the advantages and disadvantages of braces. and at what age are each appropriate? How much does it cost for cosmetic dentistry? How much for fillings and crowns? How long does it take for emergency dentistry? Who is a candidate for orthodontics?

Visit Us For Your Health!

Health is maintained through regular check-ups, maintenance, and preventative measures. Enjoy continued health and vibrancy as a result of superior dental care, vigilant dental hygiene, and healthy habits.

At Durham Dental Group in Durham NC, we offer general and cosmetic dentistry. Call our office to schedule your next cleaning and checkup today.

Contact Durham Dental Group:

919-322-3585

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

202 W NC Highway 54 Ste 201
Durham, North Carolina
27713

 

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Help Me, I’m Afraid Of The Dentist!

Durham Sleep DentistryIf you are afraid of your dentist, you are not alone. Far from it! At Durham Dental Group, we encounter many nervous dental patients.

Millions of adult Americans worry about going to the dentist. For some it’s so bad, they end up cancelling their appointments or don’t make them to begein with. This is a bad strategy, because it puts their dental health at risk. How do we calm their fears, provide a comfortable dental environment, and earn lifelong patients?

1) We carefully explain the findings of the initial dental examination and thoroughly outline any recommended care. The consultation also includes a discussion about pain control. This allows our patients to make informed decisions about their oral health and necessary dental services.

2) We practice gentle, pain-free dentistry.  Dental treatment will not begin until you are numb. Keep in mind, however, that every dentistry patient reacts to numbing agents and sedation medications differently.

Speak up promptly if you start to feel discomfort. We will pause treatment, give you an additional analgesic and wait until it takes effect. At Durham Dental Group, we never rush dental procedures.

3) We provide many in-office amenities that help our patients concentrate on something pleasant during dental treatment. Sometimes diversions such as listening to your favorite music provide a distraction while letting you remain clear-headed.

At Durham Dental Group, your dental health is our top concern. Our servies include general and cosmetic dentistry. Schedule your next cleaning and checkup with us today.

Contact Durham Dental Group:

919-322-3585

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

202 W NC Highway 54 Ste 201
Durham, North Carolina
27713

 

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Kids Who Like Dental Visits?

friendly children

At Durham Dental Group, we are proud of the fact that the majority of our young patients enjoy visiting our office for their checkups, cleanings, and treatments. We believe that establishing a relationship with an experienced children’s dentist is an essential responsibility for parents.

The Oral Health-Physical Health Connection

Good physical health for children is impossible without the oral health component. Though this fact seems obvious, cavities in kids is a national epidemic, but for the most part is preventable. Regular checkups are just as important as well child exams and immunizations.

The health of your child’s teeth and gums affects their speech development, eating habits, academic success, mental health, and social relationships. At Durham Dental Group, we love working with you and your child to establish habits that ensure a healthy smile for life.

The Good News

Today’s children are far less fearful of the dentist than their grandparents’ generation. Part of the reason is that today’s dental tools have come a long way and rarely cause any pain. If you are old enough to remember the whining dental drills of fifty years ago, you probably have a greater appreciation for the technological developments that make dental treatment far more pleasant than in years past.

But advanced tools are not the only reason that our youngest patients look forward to dental visits. At Durham Dental Group, there is a friendly atmosphere that puts patients of all ages at ease. If you are looking for a children’s dentist, please call our office to schedule an appointment. We also provide general and cosmetic dentistry. Call today.

Contact Durham Dental Group:

919-322-3585

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

202 W NC Highway 54 Ste 201
Durham, North Carolina
27713

 

ArticleID 7489

Those Baby Teeth Are A Big Deal

Kid-friendly Durham dentist

This blog post from Durham Dental Group focuses on baby teeth. Why would you take care of something that’s just going to fall out and be given to the tooth fairy? It’s a good question, with an even better answer.

Parents of young children shouldn’t feel like they are wasting their time caring for their kids’ teeth. Baby teeth are more important than many might think. Baby teeth are needed to keep the proper amount of space available for the permanent teeth that will come in later.

Baby teeth are also invaluable in the development of clear speech. This is especially important for parents who are dying to hear baby’s first word!

Having healthy baby teeth will also help your child develop a healthy diet because difficulty chewing can lead to the rejection of many different foods.

And, finally, tooth decay and infection can be passed down from baby teeth to permanent teeth as they develop below them. That’s not what you want for the teeth that your kids are going to have for the rest of their lives. You may be setting them up to need cosmetic dentistry procedures such as veneers and dental implants.

At Durham Dental Group, children’s dentistry is one of our specialties. We also offer general and cosmetic dentistry. Schedule your next appointment with us today.

Contact Durham Dental Group:

919-322-3585

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

202 W NC Highway 54 Ste 201
Durham, North Carolina
27713

 

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Halitosis And Xerostomia (Bad Breath And Dry Mouth)

dry mouth treatment Durham

While poor oral hygiene is the most common cause of halitosis, it is far from the only one. The dentists at Durham Dental Group can assure you, many circumstances can contribute to or worsen the condition. One of these is the lack of saliva or xerostomia.

Saliva and Oral Health
Saliva moistens the teeth and gums and eliminates odiferous dead cells. Saliva also neutralizes the ever-present acids on the tongue, gums, and cheeks and the minerals in saliva help to maintain enamel stability. Immunoproteins in saliva inhibit the overgrowth of microbes in the mouth, thereby shielding the gums from gingivitis. Saliva also functions as a disinfectant by cleansing the mouth of leftover food, bacteria, and fungi. This protects against cavities and infections.

Many people are plagued with occasional dry mouth, such as when they are feeling anxiety or stress. Limiting caffeine, chewing sugar-free gum, using over-the-counter saliva substitutes, and using a humidifier can add moisture to the mouth.

If you have only occasional periods of dry mouth, there is probably nothing to worry about. Constant dry mouth, however, can bring about additional oral and physical health troubles.

At Durham Dental Group, we can help. Don’t hesitate to ask at your next dental checkup. Our services include general and cosmetic dentistry. Schedule your next appointment with us today.

Contact Durham Dental Group:

919-322-3585

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

202 W NC Highway 54 Ste 201
Durham, North Carolina
27713

 

ArticleID 7334

Be Glad For Our X-Ray Vision

family dentist Durham

It’s not very enjoyable. You have to put on the heavy apron, hold a stiff piece of film in your mouth and sit really, really still while we take  x-rays. Is it really needed? At The Steele Creek Dentist in Charlotte, we say absolutely! No question about it.

We can’t see everything that is going on with your teeth, bone, and surrounding tissue without x-rays.

What Hidden Problems Do Dental X-rays Detect?

  • Cavities beneath existing bridgework, crowns, or other restorations
  • Abscesses, cysts, and infections
  • Cavities between teeth just beneath where adjacent teeth touch (interproximal cavities)
  • The position of wisdom teeth

How Often Should X-rays Be Taken?
This depends on the dental patient. A patient with no history of dental caries, no current tooth decay, no braces, and no existing crowns, veneers, or bridgework is at low risk for cavities. A high-risk patient is in the opposite situation and may have one or more of the following: previous tooth decay, existing restorations, braces, weak enamel, chipped or cracked teeth.

In addition, patients with an eating disorder or other medical condition may be considered high risk. People who haven’t had their wisdom teeth extracted also need to be followed with x-rays more frequently.

At Durham Dental Group in Durham NC, the state of your smile is important to us, and we do everything necessary to keep it healthy. Our services include general and cosmetic dentistry, including checkups and cleanings, and of course, x-rays. Schedule your next appointment with us today.

Contact Durham Dental Group:

919-322-3585

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

202 W NC Highway 54 Ste 201
Durham, North Carolina
27713

 

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