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All Posts in Category: Cavities

Sip All Day, Get Decay – The Dangerous Dental Effects of Carbonated Drinks

With Texas summer in full force, it’s easy to cool down with sugary, carbonated drinks like sodas, juices and sport drinks.

According to the Pediatric Dental Health website, each American drinks more than 53 gallons of carbonated drinks every year, much of it in the form of soft drinks.

Additionally, some patients who are trying to avoid soda opt for another type of carbonated drink: various types of seltzer water, club soda, sparkling water, and carbonated mineral water.

Let’s start with the sugar.

Everyone knows that sugar is bad for our teeth.

Specifically, sugar in soda combines with bacteria in your mouth to form acid within 30 seconds, which attacks the teeth. Diet or “sugar-free” soda contains its own acid, which also can damage teeth. Each attack lasts about 20 – 30 minutes and starts over with every sip of soda you take.

The reality of carbonated beverages.Yes, Sparkling Water Can Harm Your Teeth

The potential for dental erosion from carbonated drinks is due to the phosphoric acid, citric acid or carbonic acid. Any of these can erode tooth enamel. Over time the acid dissolves the calcium in your teeth leaving behind a mushy mess called a cavity.

The calcium in saliva works to remineralize teeth after exposure to small amounts of eroding acid, but with the increased consumption of carbonated beverages, it’s not enough.

Even diet soft drinks contain damaging acids. People often consume many soft drinks over the course of a day, which means tooth enamel is exposed to the acids over several hours.

Unfortunately, sparkling water is also very acidic due to the carbonation which can combine with the water to form carbonic acid.

Additionally, teeth with weakened enamel are also more susceptible to staining.

Tips for drinking carbonated beverages:infused-water-jars

  • Reduce or eliminate the beverage from your diet.
  • Use a straw to prevent contact between the soda and your teeth.
  • Thoroughly rinse your mouth with water after drinking soda.
  • Drink soda within a short period of time and then rinse, instead of sipping slowly over an extended period of time.

Dr. Larry Korenman of Loveable Smiles in Richardson has a refreshing solution to make water a bit less boring and more like a treat. Making your own infused water is practically calorie free and gives you a refreshing way to stay hydrated.

You can infuse water easily with fruit, vegetables, and herbs.  This goes beyond the classic ubiquitous lemon slice in water. It’s one of those things where you can get super creative and think outside the bottle. The possibilities are endless! Add the fruit and herbs into a bottle of cool water. Let the water refrigerate for a few hours to allow the flavors to infuse and then enjoy!

Loveable Smiles – 972-231-0585

www.loveablesmiles.com

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Dental Truths and Myths: Silver fillings don’t need to be replaced.

Quite often Dr. Korenman hears the following and very common dental myth:dental-fillings-350x350

“Silver fillings don’t need to be replaced.”

One of the most hotly debated issues among dentists these days is whether or not old, silver amalgam fillings in the mouths of so many Americans are safe.

Silver fillings, also known as dental amalgam, are a mixture of liquid (elemental) mercury and a powdered alloy composed of silver, tin and copper. In fact, there is more mercury than any other metal so they should be called “mercury fillings” rather than “silver fillings” but who would allow mercury to be put into their body?

Primary Fears About Mercury

Many people claim mercury leeches out over time from these silver fillings – more if you drink hot liquids and chew gum or grind your teeth and they are concerned about dangerous levels of mercury vapors leading to mercury toxicity.

Some people claim that mercury has been linked to autoimmune diseases, neurological issues, chronic diseases and even mental disorders.

The FDA did a long-term study proving that amalgam is not dangerous when used as a filling in teeth. Science has proved that the mercury in fillings do not cause these diseases; however, amalgam does pose a huge problem in teeth.

The Real Danger with Silver Fillings

Teeth and fillings expand and contract at different rates.  Over many years of ingesting hot and then cold food and drink, the fillings experience expansion and contraction. The contraction creates openings between the tooth and the filling material. The expansion can contribute to the tooth cracking or worse, splitting. Dr. Korenman has even seen a large part of a tooth break off with the metal filling still completely intact.

Additionally, when you chew and your teeth come together there’s a lot of pressure and force at work, and the metal filling takes the brunt of that pressure…which can also lead to the tooth being fractured much like a log being split.

When the seal between the tooth and the filling breaks down, food particles and decay-causing bacteria work their way between the worn filling and the tooth. These bacteria cannot be removed with a toothbrush or by any other means, and decay may develop along the edge of the filling or underneath it.

broken_filling_1

Broken filling.

The most frustrating part of all this is that it happens painlessly with very few signs of a problem. We use high magnification to detect these openings between the filling and the tooth structure and with the intraoral cameras we use, you can see this yourself on the photographs.

Technology for those “unseen” spaces

When we look into our mouths, only a small portion of the surface area of our teeth and gums is visible.

Dr. Korenman of Loveable Smiles has invested in the latest dental technology that allows him and his team to see things that normally go undetected. Using the NewTom VG3 Dental CAT-scan Dr. Korenman is able to obtain limitless, 3D views including between the teeth, under the gums, in the bones and even nerve canals and sinuses can be seen. This allows Dr. K to completely diagnose and provide full treatment options.

Additionally, Dr. Korenman has invested in CEREC Technology which uses ceramic materials to restore your teeth to their natural strength, beauty, and function. The best thing about CEREC, is that your teeth can be restored in one visit to the dentist. Your crown is designed and milled right here in our office!  A few years ago, you had to visit the dentist 3 or 4 or even more times in order to perform teeth restoration.  The technology saves a lot of time for our patients.

We invite you to call Loveable Smiles for your dental CAT scan and Total Health Dental appointment at 972-231-0585

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Dental Truths and Myths: Baby teeth do not matter since they are going to fall out anyway

Quite often Dr. Korenman hears the following and very common dental myth:

 

“Baby teeth do not matter since they are going to fall out anyway.”

Here is an alarming statistic:

Tooth decay is still the most common chronic childhood disease and left untreated, it can impair a child’s ability to eat, speak, sleep and learn.baby teeth 2

 

Your child’s teeth need to be strong and healthy to chew, speak, sing, smile with confidence, play a musical instrument and most important, act as “space savers” for adult teeth.

If your child prematurely loses a tooth/teeth, the tooth beside it may drift into the empty space, which then doesn’t allow for the adult teeth to erupt into its proper place.

If your child has a cavity, it’s usually painless at the beginning. If left untreated it will become quite advanced, often with no symptoms at all. The tooth can become abscessed without the child having any noticeable symptoms until it’s too late and it becomes infected and then there IS pain!

Baby teeth may be temporary, but giving them proper care can help you achieve a lifetime of oral health as well as overall health.  Simple preventive checkups twice a year can prevent childhood decay and help you and your child learn how to protect their teeth throughout their lifetime as well as helping your child to have a great attitude about having dental care.

All the adults who fear having dental treatment and who hate seeing dentists tell us the horrible problems they had as children. This is extremely sad because it is so simple to prevent those bad experiences if we get to meet early enough.

Caring for Your Baby’s Teeth

Running a damp washcloth over your baby’s gums following feedings can prevent buildup of damaging bacteria.

Once your child has a few teeth showing, you can brush them with a soft child’s toothbrush or rub them with gauze at the end of the day.

The best type of toothbrush to use at first, is a long handled brush with a small head. This design makes it easy to reach all areas of your baby’s mouth.

Your baby’s toothbrush should have rounded, soft filaments. You should replace it every 10-12 weeks, or sooner if the filaments become splayed.

It isn’t absolutely essential to use toothpaste to clean your baby’s teeth – the brushing action itself is actually the most important part of keeping them clean. If you prefer to use toothpaste, then you should choose one that is designed specifically for infants, because they contain very little – if any – fluoride. In fact, the American Association of Pediatric Dentistry guidelines suggest that babies under the age of 2 receive NO fluoride at all.

Putting your baby to sleep with a bottle in his or her mouth may be convenient in the short term — but it can harm the baby’s teeth. When the sugars from juice or milk remain on a baby’s teeth for hours, they may eat away at the enamel, creating a condition known as bottle mouth.

If your baby is “stubborn” and fusses about having their teeth brushed, gently continue trying every few days.  Children who are nearly 2 have a passion to copy everything they see done around them. If a 2-year-old girl sees her parents brush their teeth, she one day grabs one of their brushes and insists on trying it herself. This is a good time to buy her a brush and let her go to it. Naturally, she wScoops of Various Ice Creamson’t be very efficient at first, but you can help her tactfully.

During summer vacation, kids are more likely to indulge in sugary snacks like popsicles, ice cream and slushies.  Parents, should be helping their child brush their teeth every night until the child is 9 or 10 years old. After that, they should have the dexterity to properly clean their teeth.

The Oral Systemic Connection is the driving force at Loveable Smiles.  It’s called the “Mouth-Body Connection,” and it means that poor dental health can severely deteriorate your body, especially your lungs and heart, and it can also lead to a host to other conditions including Alzheimer’s disease and even some Cancers.

 

If our children have healthy mouths, they are more likely to have healthy bodies and can ward off serious health issues later in life.

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Dental Truths and Myths: I know my teeth; I would know if I have a problem

Quite often Dr. Korenman hears the following and very common dental myth:

“I’d know if my teeth had problems – I know my teeth.”cavity myth graphic

While there are occasional situations where patients have an immediate oral infection or injury that does hurt, the reality is pain is not a reliable indicator of dental problems.

A cavity can form, sometimes becoming quite advanced, with no symptoms at all. It can grow into an abscessed tooth without the person having any noticeable symptoms until it’s too late and it becomes infected and then there IS pain!

Here’s another startling statistic:

80% of people have Gum Disease and DO NOT KNOW IT! There is usually no pain involved for people until extremely late in the degeneration. Many gum problems will go unnoticed until they are diagnosed by a dentist and statistically 70% of dentists do not screen their patients on a yearly basis and even they will miss diagnosing this terrible problem.

 

Dr. Korenman encourages his patients to schedule their Total Health Dental appointment at regular intervals not only to have a healthy mouth, but a healthy body.  Many of these unknown oral issues can contribute to inflammation in your body and lead to a host of issues including heart disease, diabetes and arthritis. Learn more about the mouth body connection here. http://loveablesmiles.com/category/total-health-dental-care/

Technology for those “unseen” spacesnewtom32

When we look into our mouths, only a small portion of the surface area of our teeth and gums is visible. The unseen surface area of our teeth and the inside of our gum pockets may actually be greater than the visible surfaces, depending on how bad the pockets are. These pockets, or spaces between the gum and teeth can range from 1/16’ deep to over ½’ deep, all the way around the tooth. If we added up the surface area of the unseen germ world, it would be about the size of the palm of our hand. Imagine having an infected area that big for a lifetime and not doing anything about it! Yet most people don’t even realize this hidden germ world exists.

 

Dr. Korenman of Loveable Smiles has invested in the latest dental technology that allows him and his team to see things that normally go undetected. Using the NewTom VG3 Dental CAT-scan Dr. Korenman is able to obtain limitless, 3D views including between the teeth, under the gums, in the bones and even nerve canals and sinuses can be seen. This allows Dr. K to completely diagnose and provide full treatment options.

Patients are able to clearly see for themselves, visible, existing physical conditions.

We invite you to call Loveable Smiles for your dental CAT scan and Total Health Dental appointment at 972-231-0585

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Healthy Mouth, Healthy Baby

Quite often Dr. Korenman hears a common “myth” or wives’ tale about cavities and pregnancy.Little Girl Kissing New Sibling to Be

 

Women share with him that they had perfect teeth until they got pregnant. That all of their calcium leached out of their teeth and into the baby’s bones causing all their cavities.

 

The reality is that the calcium does not leach out of teeth.

 

There are several reasons why many pregnant women and new moms get tooth decay:

  • Hormones change during pregnancy causing the gums to be more susceptible to infection.
  • Many women experience nausea during pregnancy not allowing them to eat let alone put a toothbrush in their mouth. So the teeth aren’t getting cleaned.
  • Many women can only stomach certain foods and often give in to cravings that contain a lot of sugar and/or carbohydrates. These foods can cause tooth decay.

 

If you are pregnant, one of the most important medical appointments you can make is to call your dentist.

 

Why? Because the bacteria that cause gum disease may increase a mom’s risk for delivering prematurely.

 

Gum Disease & Developing Babiespregnancy and dental health

There is a link between uncontrolled gum disease (and the mom may not even know she has gum disease as 80% of people have it) and pregnancy complications such as premature labor and preeclampsia (rise in blood pressure).

 

A study exploring the possible link between gum disease and preeclampsia found that 50% of the placentas from women with preeclampsia were positive for one or more periodontal pathogens.

 

Scientists believe these infections cause a rapid increase in certain fluids in the body that, in turn, induce labor. It’s not necessarily the infection itself but the body’s response to the infection that causes the premature birth.

 

Mom’s Hormones and the Baby’s Teeth

Pregnancy causes hormonal changes that increase the risk of developing gum disease, which can affect the health of their babies.teeth for two photo

 

Studies have shown that bacteria responsible for tooth decay are passed from the mother to the child in utero. The more frequently you give in to the craving for sugary snacks, the greater the chance of developing tooth decay.

 

Additionally, pregnant women with acid reflux are also at a greater risk of tooth erosion and

periodontal problems as the acid dissolves away the protective coating of teeth (enamel) leaving them weakened and at a very high risk of needing extensive (and expensive) restorations.

 

Dr. Korenman recommends that women visit his office as soon as they learn or their pregnancy.   Dr. Korenman and his team will test for any dental health problems that might affect your baby.

If you are diagnosed with gum disease, Dr. Korenman can design a safe treatment plan to treat it and to help you keep it under control.

For the health of your unborn baby, we urge you to call Loveable Smiles for your Total Health Dental Care appointment at 972-231-0585.

This is just one of many examples of how we treat people, not just teeth.

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The Dangers Of Dry Mouth

Dr. Korenman of Loveable Smiles Explains Dry Mouth: Causes, Associated Problems, and Treatmentdry mouth 2
Dry mouth is a growing problem in dentistry. On a daily basis, Dr. Korenman and his staff see patients who suffer from dry mouth and the issues associated with dry mouth including tooth decay, gum disease and mouth sores.
Dry mouth—also called xerostomia—results from an inadequate flow of saliva.
It is not a disease, but a symptom of a medical disorder and/or most commonly, a side effect of popular medications including:
• Blood pressure medications
• Anti-depression/Anti-Anxiety
• Diuretics
• Pain killers
• Antihistamines
• Decongestants
• Even neurological medications for treatment of anti-anxiety and ADHD.

The combination of two or more of these medications dramatically increase dry-mouth effects.medications

With regular saliva production, your teeth are constantly bathed in a mineral-rich solution that helps keep your teeth strong and resistant to decay.
Dry mouth can lead to extensive tooth decay, gum disease and mouth sores.

Signs You May Have Dry Mouth
• Extreme thirst.
• Waking up in the night needing water.
• Teeth feel rough like sand.
• Cheeks stick to your teeth.
• Lips feel dry.

Other Issues Associated with Dry Mouth
Other health issues can also arise if dry mouth is left untreated.

Common problems linked to dry mouth include:
• Difficulty speaking
• Difficulty chewing
• Fungal infections in mouth
• Hoarseness
• Sore gums/throat
• Problems with swallowing food
• Burning sensation in mouth
• Dry nasal passages
• Difficulty wearing dentures
• Overly dry lips

Treating Dry MouthEffervess-all natural aloe vera Toothpaste
While there isn’t any cure for dry mouth, the sooner it gets diagnosed the less damage it does to your teeth. Here are some tips for treating your dry mouth.
• Dr. Korenman highly recommends Effervess Oral Care products, which can help relieve the symptoms of dry mouth caused by medications. (Available at Loveable Smiles and Amazon.) The line includes toothpaste and a whitening gel.
• Swish with water in addition to drinking it.
• Chew sugarless gum.
• Patients with dry mouth should have regular dental checkups with Dr. Korenman and his staff for evaluation and treatment. Please bring up-to-date medication list with you to your appointment at Loveable Smiles.

If you are experiencing a dry mouth as a side effect of your medication, please call Loveable Smiles at 972-231-0585

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I Have A Cavity, But Why Doesn’t My Tooth Hurt?

Most dental problems don’t have any symptoms until they reach more advanced stages.i gotta filling

This is true for cavities, Oral Cancer and even gum disease. In fact 80% of all patients have gum disease and don’t even know it.

Teeth are one part of the body that cannot heal themselves.

We often say, here at Loveable Smiles in Richardson that “Neglect is the most expensive thing in dentistry.”

Additionally, when you have any issues within your teeth and gums, it can affect your entire body.

This is why it is imperative to visit Dr. Korenman on a regular basis.

Here are the top 4 ways your hygiene appointment is a real medical appointment:

  1. We check your blood pressure. Evidence links Gum Disease and heart health. Check out the WebMD article on this important topic.
  2. We evaluate your gum tissue for gum disease.
  3. You will be screened for Oral Cancer.
  4. We check your biting, chewing and swallowing patterns.  Improperly aligned teeth can cause unnecessary wear and tear on your teeth.

Early detection of minor issues can be corrected before they become bigger, more painful and more expensive issues later.

Call Loveable Smiles today!  972-231-0585 to schedule your appointment.

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