Category “oral hygiene”

Did You Know Replacing Your Fillings Can Make Your Mouth Healthier?

Fillings are used very commonly in dentistry to combat decay and strengthen teeth with cavities. Although fillings can last for several years, they’re not a permanent solution. If you’ve had your fillings for a long time, it may be time to think about replacing them.

The benefits of fillings

Fillings are restorations, which are placed inside cavities, or small holes in the tooth. The aim is to make the tooth stronger, but also to protect the tooth. Placing a filling and cleaning the cavity can help to prevent harmful bacteria reaching other parts of the tooth. If you have a cavity, and you don’t have a filling, there’s a risk of the hole getting larger, and the tooth could also become infected.

How long do fillings last?

The lifespan of a filling will depend on the material used. Today, most people have fillings that are made from dental composite, a tooth-coloured material. In the past, mercury amalgam fillings were much more common. Composite fillings should last around 5 years, while amalgam fillings last up to 15 years. Although amalgam fillings are more durable than composite fillings, there are several advantages of white fillings. Most importantly for patients keen to preserve the look of their smile, white fillings are incredibly discreet, and they blend in with the natural tooth shade. Composite fillings are also safer and more environmentally-friendly than mercury amalgam fillings.

The advantages of replacing fillings

If you’ve had fillings for a long time, you may need to replace them. Fillings can become worn over the course of time, and this can impact oral health. If the filling doesn’t fit the cavity anymore, there’s a chance that bacteria will be able to penetrate the tooth. A worn filling could also cause the tooth to become weaker. When you go to the dentist for routine check-ups, they will take a look at any fillings or crowns you have, and check for signs of wear or tear. If your dentist thinks you might benefit from a new filling, they will discuss this with you.

How to avoid a Dental Nightmare Before Christmas

It only seems like yesterday that we were basking in the sunshine and revelling in unexpected football-related joy, but Christmas is creeping up at a rate of knots. In just a few weeks, many of us will be looking forward to taking time off and spending it with loved ones. Christmas is the most wonderful time of year, but what happens if dental nightmares spoil your plans? The last thing anybody wants is to be nursing toothache or painful gums instead of enjoying a festive feast. If you’re keen to keep your smile in check this winter, here are some tips:

Brushing and flossing

Good oral hygiene is the best weapon against unwanted dental issues, so make sure you set aside 2 minutes every morning and evening to brush and a few minutes to floss each day. Brushing and flossing remove bacteria and bits of food, which helps to prevent the formation of plaque. Plaque is the most common cause of gum disease and decay. A good daily oral hygiene routine will also help to prevent bad breath and keep your smile sparkling.

Book a dental check

If you haven’t been to the dentist in the last 6-9 months, now is the perfect time to call and book an appointment. Dental checks take a few minutes, they’re completely painless, and a trip to the dentist could enable you to enjoy Christmas without any worries about troublesome teeth.

Watch what you eat

Christmas is a time of indulgence. While it’s brilliant to stuff yourself with festive treats, spare a thought for your poor teeth. Nobody is saying that you can’t enjoy yourself at Christmas, but try and limit the damage to your smile by avoiding fizzy drinks, sticking to main meals, rather than grazing, and keeping an eye on how much sugar you consume.

If you need any more festive dental advice, don’t hesitate to get in touch!

Why it is So Important to Floss Before Dental Treatment

We all know how important brushing is for our dental health, but many of us overlook flossing. Flossing is a technique, which involves using ultra-fine dental tape to clean the areas of the mouth that are missed when brushing.

Flossing before dental treatment

If you’re due to undergo dental treatment, we recommended brushing and flossing in advance. This will help to clean the mouth and remove potentially harmful bacteria. Flossing dislodges food debris and bacteria from the gum line and the cracks between the teeth and it can help to provide a deeper clean before treatment.

The benefits of flossing

Flossing is designed to be used in addition to twice-daily brushing as part of an effective oral hygiene routine. Flossing is beneficial for your dental health because it targets parts of the mouth that are tricky to reach with a brush, including the gaps between the teeth and the gum line. The more bacteria and debris you remove, the lower the risk of plaque developing. Plaque is a sticky film, which clings to the surfaces of the teeth and the gums. It is made from bacteria, bits of food and saliva, and it is the most potent risk factor for decay and gum disease. Flossing can help to prevent oral disease and bad breath and keep your smile looking great.

Flossing tips

If you’ve never flossed before, you may find that it takes a couple of attempts to get the hang of it. Flossing involves passing a length of dental floss through the cracks between the teeth and cleaning along your gum line. Use separate pieces of tape, and don’t tug at the floss, as this can damage the gums. It is normal for the gums to bleed when flossing for the first time, but if bleeding persists, see your dentist. Bleeding gums can be a symptom of gum disease.

Five Reasons To Floss

Be honest. How often do you floss? If you don’t already floss as part of your daily oral hygiene regime, it’s time to make some changes. Here are 5 good reasons why you should start flossing today:

  1. Cleaner, brighter smiles: flossing helps to clean your teeth, so that you can enjoy a brighter, more beautiful smile.
  2. Lower risk of decay: brushing is brilliant, but it can’t target areas that aren’t accessible with the brush head. Flossing cleans these hard to reach zones, giving you a much deeper clean and reducing the risk of decay.
  3. Reduced gum disease risk: it can be difficult to clean along the gum line with your toothbrush. This is where flossing comes in handy. With fine dental tape, you can remove bits of food and eliminate bacteria from the gums, reducing the risk of gum disease. Gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in British adults, so it’s really important to make sure your daily dental hygiene regime is on point.
  4. Plaque prevention: plaque is a sticky colourless film, which forms when bacteria and food debris combine with saliva. Plaque is the most significant risk factor for decay and gum disease. Brushing and flossing help to rid the mouth of food particles and bacteria before they can form plaque.
  5. Fresher breath: most of us want to enjoy clean, fresh breath. Bad breath is a very common problem, which can result from poor oral hygiene. Flossing removes food debris from the mouth, decreasing the risk of bad breath, and ensuring you feel confident when you meet new people or catch up with friends and colleagues.

If you’re new to flossing, and you need any tips or advice, we’ll be happy to help! Call us  our Essex Dentist now or pop in and see us if you’re passing.

Five Reasons Why it is Important to Floss This Summer

Many of us know all about the benefits of brushing, but have you given much thought to flossing? If you’re eager to keep your smile in check this summer, here are 5 good reasons to start flossing now:

  1. Removing food debris: it’s very common to get food stuck between your teeth, and often, it’s hard to remove debris with a brush. This is where flossing comes in handy. If you floss, you can dislodge bits of food, which prevents plaque formation and helps to reduce the risk of bad breath.
  2. Removing bacteria: bacteria gather in the mouth all the time. Some strains of bacteria can be very harmful, but others are good for your health. Brushing and flossing help to remove dangerous bacteria before they can combine with saliva and food particles to form plaque.
  3. Reducing the risk of decay: decay is one of the most common preventable illnesses is caused by bacteria, which weaken and penetrate the enamel surface of the tooth, causing holes to form. Flossing is an effective cleaning technique, which helps to lower the risk of decay by preventing the development of plaque. Plaque is the most common cause of both decay and gum disease.
  4. Keeping your smile looking beautiful: most of us want to enjoy a healthy, beautiful smile for as long as possible. Flossing can help to prevent decay and gum disease, but it can also reduce the risk of discolouration and keep your smile looking great.
  5. Preventing bad breath: bad breath can be an embarrassing issue. In many cases, bad breath is linked to bacteria that collect in the mouth. When they feed, they release gases, which have a pungent smell. Flossing helps to clean the mouth and remove bacteria, lowering the risk of halitosis.

Four Ways To Protect Your Teeth In the Sunshine

The sun is shining, and summer is in full swing. If you’re keen to take good care of your smile in the sunshine, here are 4 ways to protect your teeth:

  1. Avoid sugary drinks: many of us like to crack open a cool fizzy drink or a flavoured alcoholic beverage when the sun comes out. While you may enjoy the taste, your teeth won’t thank you for bathing them in sugary nectar this summer. Try and avoid sugary and acidic drinks, especially between meals. Opt for diet, sugar-free versions, or stick to water.
  2. See your dentist: on a sunny day, a dental clinic may not be top of your list of places to go, but the holidays are a great time to arrange a check-up. If you haven’t been to the dentist in the last 6-9 months, call and book an appointment today. If you’re going away, it’s hugely beneficial to arrange a check before you travel to reduce the risk of dental injuries, infections and tooth pain.
  3. Use a mouth guard for sports: summer is a time when many of us like to be more active and enjoy time outside. If you’re playing sport this summer, don’t forget to wear a mouth guard to protect your teeth. It’s a good idea to use a gum shield for sports like boxing, martial arts, cricket, rugby, hockey and lacrosse.
  4. Don’t use your teeth as a bottle opener: we’ve all been there. You’ve got friends around, you’ve bought a load of bottles of beer, but the bottle opener has disappeared. If this a familiar scenario, don’t be the person who sacrifices their smile for the good of others. Using your teeth to open a bottle could cause extensive damage.

The Importance of Flossing

Be honest. How often do you floss your teeth? Many of us are brilliant when it comes to brushing but we neglect to floss. Flossing should be part of your daily oral hygiene routine. If it’s not already, here are some good reasons to start flossing:

Cleaning the gum line and between the cracks: when you clean your teeth, you may do a fantastic job with your brush, but even the most diligent person can’t clean the entire mouth with a toothbrush. There are parts of the mouth that cannot be reached with a brush, including the gum line and the cracks between the teeth. This is where flossing comes in handy. With dental floss, you can clean these areas, dislodging food debris and reducing the risk of plaque formation. Plaque is the main risk factor for decay and gum disease.

Lower risk of dental disease: cleaning your teeth is important for keeping your smile looking wonderful, but it’s also essential for your health. If you don’t clean your mouth properly, there’s a risk of plaque developing. This sticky film is made when bacteria and food debris combine with saliva. Plaque clings to the surfaces of the teeth and the gums, and it can increase the risk of gum disease and cavities. Flossing is an effective way to lower the risk of dental disease and keep your mouth healthy.

Fresh, clean breath: bad breath is a very common problem. In most cases, it is linked to poor oral hygiene, which causes bacteria to gather in different parts of the mouth, most notably at the back of the tongue. These bacteria release gases with an unpleasant odour when they feed. Flossing helps to prevent bad breath and keep the mouth feeling clean and fresh.

If you need any more advice about flossing or you’d like some flossing tips, why not call us or pop in and see us?

Six Spring Cleaning Tips For Your Smile

Spring is in full swing. Many of us tend to take the opportunity to spring clean our homes when warmer climes arrive, but have you thought about polishing your oral hygiene regime? Here are 6 spring cleaning tips to add sparkle to your smile:

  1. Swap your toothbrush: if you haven’t replaced your brush or the brush head of your electric toothbrush in the last 3-4 months, now is the time to buy a new brush or swap the head. Worn bristles aren’t as effective as new ones, and you won’t get as deep a clean.
  2. Use fluoride toothpaste: fluoride is a mineral, which is proven to benefit oral health by protecting the enamel, the hard outer surface of the tooth. Using fluoride toothpaste can help to reduce the risk of decay.
  3. Brush twice a day: we all know that dentists recommend brushing twice a day, but surveys suggest that many people only brush once. It’s important to brush every morning and evening to remove food debris and bacteria before they combine with saliva to form plaque. Plaque is the main cause of both decay and gum disease. Brushing frequently can also help to prevent bad breath and tooth staining.
  4. Set a timer: if you’re usually rushing to get out of the house in the morning, you may find that you’re not doing a thorough job. We recommend brushing twice a day for 2 minutes each time. If your brush doesn’t have a timer, set a timer on your phone or play a song and brush from start to finish.
  5. Don’t be too rough: you may think that brushing vigorously achieves better results, but being too rough with your toothbrush can actually do more harm than good. Brush gently to protect your enamel.
  6. Book a hygiene session: it is possible to do a really fantastic job of cleaning with your toothbrush, but nothing compares to the powerful cleaning treatments offered by dental hygienists. Hygiene treatments remove plaque and tartar, and they also tackle surface stains and blitz bad breath.

If you need any more cleaning tips, or you’re keen to book a check-up or a hygiene session, don’t hesitate to get in touch!

The Importance of Flossing: Cleaning Between Teeth

Most of us are aware of the importance of brushing, but studies show that very few people floss. Flossing is essential because it cleans between the teeth, removing food debris and bacteria from areas that you can’t clean with a brush.

Why is flossing so important?

Flossing plays an influential role in good oral health because it helps to remove bacteria and bits of food from areas of the mouth that cannot be reached with a brush. When you’re cleaning your teeth, it’s not possible to fit the bristles in the tiny cracks between the teeth, and this leaves you vulnerable to decay and gum disease. If bacteria and food debris are left in the mouth, they can combine with saliva to form plaque. Flossing boosts your oral health and it can also help to prevent bad breath.

How often should I floss?

Daily flossing is recommended as part of a good oral hygiene regime. Floss after brushing to complete cleaning. If you feel like you’ve got food stuck in your teeth, it’s also a good idea to floss between meals.

How to floss

Flossing is very simple, but if you’ve never done it before, you may find it a little awkward to begin with. Take a short piece of dental tape and gently guide it through the cracks between the teeth. Take a new piece and continue until you have cleaned the whole of the mouth. When you floss, take care to be very gentle, and don’t pull at the tape, as this can harm your gums.

Is it normal for my gums to bleed?

If you’ve never flossed before or you haven’t flossed for a long time, you may find that your gums bleed the first couple of times. If you notice your gums bleeding when you brush or they start to bleed when you floss, and you are used to flossing on a regular basis, call your dentist. Bleeding gums can be a sign of gum disease, and it’s best to get checked out.

If you have questions about flossing or you need some helpful advice or tips, don’t hesitate to get in touch!

Five Reasons to Floss

You may be an ace at brushing, but do you floss every day? If you don’t here are 5 reasons that may change your mind:

  1. Lower risk of decay: decay is caused by plaque, which forms when bacteria combines with saliva and food debris to form a sticky substance that clings to the teeth and gums. When you brush, you can’t clean everywhere and flossing helps to lower the risk of decay by eliminating more bacteria and bits of food from the mouth.
  2. Cleaner, brighter teeth: you can only do so much with a brush. Flossing helps you to achieve a cleaner, brighter smile, which should help you feel more attractive and confident.
  3. Lower risk of gum disease: plaque is also the most common cause of gum disease. Flossing helps to keep harmful bacteria at bay, keeping your teeth and gums safe.
  4. Lower risk of bad breath: many cases of bad breath are caused by bacteria feeding on leftover bits of food in the mouth. When you brush, it can be hard to remove every trace of food, and this is why flossing is so beneficial. If you floss regularly and you stick to twice-daily brushing, you should find that you have fresh breath all the time.
  5. Achieving a deeper clean: brushing is great for your oral health, but you can’t cover the entire mouth with a toothbrush. Flossing cleans the areas that are missed with a brush, enabling you to enjoy a much deeper clean.

If you have any more questions about flossing or you need advice or flossing tips, we’ll be happy to help! Simply give us a call or bob in and see us if you’re passing by.