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How to keep teeth healthy through diet and nutrition – Part 2

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Keep your healthy Endodontist NYC New Yorkers like to eat. But have you ever thought about eating for your teeth? In Part 1 of this series we discussed foods that benefit your teeth — like celery and strawberries. We continue this helpful topic with more tips on keeping teeth healthy. If you already have had problems with decay and cavities, you want to pay special attention to what you eat. Some people have weaker teeth and weaker (thinner) enamel than others. Know your risk – speak to your dentist endodontist.

FOODS FOR HEALTHY TEETH

Sesame seeds are similar to celery in that they are also an abrasive food that can help “brush” the surface of teeth and remove bacteria causing debris. They are also high in calcium, which is important in bone and teeth formation, and are extremely easy to incorporate into the diet. Toss a handful of toasted sesame seeds on your next snack or meal, or sprinkle them in your salads.

Vitamin K is essential for bone growth and mineral absorption, it can help strengthen teeth enamel when paired with Vitamin D. Cruciferous vegetables, such as kale and broccoli, are very high in Vitamin K and other immune-boosting nutrients that can also contribute to healthier gums and teeth. Other great sources of this vitamin include egg yolks, hard cheese, pasteurized butter, fermented grains, and naturally-cured salami.

FIGHT BACTERIA WITH PARSLEY

Parsley has been used as a natural breath freshener for ages. This herb is known for its antibacterial properties and may help prevent bacteria that can lead to lose of tooth enamel. Next time, chew some parsley in place of sugary gum or breath mints; not only will it freshen your breath, it can also save your teeth from sugars that can deteriorate enamel.

Now consider having some tea. Naturally high in antioxidants for a healthier oral cavity, almost all leaves that brew tea also contains fluoride, which protects tooth enamel from decay. Green tea, in particular, also contains the antioxidant polyphenol, which protects the teeth by preventing plaque from adhering to its surface. As an added bonus, freshly brewed tea may also help eliminate bad breath for a more presentable smile.

WATER IS YOUR FRIEND

Drinking water can ensure a clean mouth, it washes away trapped debris between teeth that serve as a breeding ground for enamel harming bacteria. For the sake of your teeth, it is also advisable to swish and rinse the oral cavity with water after drinking or eating highly acidic or enamel-dissolving foods, such as alcohol, coffee, or lemons, to keep the harsh foods from dissolving teeth surface and enamel. By keeping yourself hydrated, your body can also have a stronger immune system to potentially help ward off gum disease, which in turn, can be detrimental to tooth enamel.

You’ve heard this from your dentist – but we’ll reiterate it – avoid soda and sugary drinks. Sodas and sweet juice drinks have high sugar levels. Enjoy them rarely, and stick to water and less acidic beverages. If you must have fruit juice, water it down. Your endodontist NYC at Fifth Avenue Endodontics wants you to have clean, healthy teeth! Contact us to learn more. Thanks for reading.

THE HISTORY OF TOOTHPASTE

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Today you walk in to your modern dentist’s office, you get an exam – maybe get some x-rays, and they can tell you exactly what is going on in your mouth. They have advanced tools and treatments for every possible tooth or mouth problem.

Obviously, technological advances have helped a lot in the world of dentistry, but when did care for the teeth even start or become popular? It all had to start somewhere – but you’ve probably never thought about it. How did oral care develop? Who came up with toothpaste?

Toothpaste wasn’t always around. We have learned that it dates back to about 5000 BC! Egyptians used to use a type of powder to clean their teeth with their fingers. However, it was also said that in China (around this same time period) twigs and bones were ground up and mixed with water, salt, and flower petals to make a paste that was rubbed on the teeth.  It is also recorded that in Rome, there was supposedly a urine-based toothpaste! That wouldn’t be a popular flavor today – I believe we’ll stick with peppermint and wintergreen!

So when was modern toothpaste created, the kind we buy in tubes today? This “invention” happened in Britain in the 1870’s when British chemists perfected the ancient recipes by adding abrasive substances like brick dust and crushed china. “Abrasion” was believed to be the best method of teeth cleaning at this time, and it is still practiced today, but in moderation and at your dentist’s office. At this time in Europe the first toothbrush was also created. It was made by William Addis as a better alternative than using your fingers, and originally used swine hair bristles.

In the 1890’s, toothpaste went through a marketing spurt and became more popular in America. It was also the time when toothpaste began being distributed in a collapsible tube. Even though the Americans did lead the toothpaste advertising for this period, we did not become frequent users until after World War II when the GI’s returned with toothpaste from Europe. This would also begin the fluoride era, and the removal of soap from pastes in 1940.

As for toothpaste today, there are many types and brands with their own identifiers. Whitening toothpastes, baking soda toothpastes, breath freshening toothpastes – we have many choices. Natural toothpaste has been resurrected and is growing in popularity.  You can also purchase toothpaste for sensitive teeth and gums. You can always ask your dentist which toothpaste type they recommend for you.

The addition of fluoride to toothpaste is considered the most important introduction to the world of dental health – finally there was an ingredient to fight cavities and help whiten teeth. Another advance in toothpaste ingredients is the use of Triclosan, which is considered the equivalent of fluoride, as it fights bad breath, gum disease, and plaque.

The technology and possibilities of toothpaste continue to evolve, and will no doubt change over the coming years as new discoveries and advances are made, and popular products are fine-tuned.  New brands are constantly being created and competing with the greats like Colgate and Crest. But as your dentist would add, regardless of the toothpaste brand you like, the most important thing is  that you brush twice a day!

 

 

Multi-Modality Endodontics with 3D Imaging Part 2

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In Part 1 of this article, we discussed the basics of Cone Beam Computed Technology (CBCT) 3D imaging. Part 2 of this article will be devoted to how CBCT impacts comprehensive treatments, diagnosing pain, programs a Multi Modality Machine should have.

Comprehensive Treatment
A good MMM can have the potential to render varying size 2D and 3D images, and isn’t restricted.  It has the advantage of rendering a single small tooth scan and also the ability to do a bilateral or full scan. If the patient has a history of dental restorations or is anticipating additional treatment in the future, having a one-time CBCT scan has several advantages:

•          Increased success with treating current endodontic teeth

•          Knowledge of all root morphology for future treatment.

•          Diagnosing undeveloped problems, a valuable feature

•          Bilateral is a lot more comprehensive for implant placement and guide fabrication

•          Less radiation and less time consuming to do one scan instead of many small volume      scans

Prescreening for medical procedures is a walk in the park with the correct MMM. Dentists and endodontists look to it to rule out any major dental problems, particularly chronic infections. This means patients who are undergoing radiation treatment, medication treatment, cardiac, orthopedic, and surgical procedures. A bilateral volume is the most effective rendering to have done, and a 3D imaging machine that handles solely small volume requires your dentist to take multiple images. This adds up to a bigger overall dose of radiation with a lot more quantifying and sending out diagnostic data.

Diagnosing Pain

A good CBCT 3D imaging unit should be better able to assist with diagnosing pain. In some cases, a patient will have tooth or mouth pain that seems to be acute or chronic, and it could be stimulated or unstimulated. Dentists can get a broad image of the target area, and focus in on a lot of detail employing a 3D rendering.

This technology empowers dental professionals to comprehensively examine patients to a degree never before possible. From the beginning, our profession has based our radiographic interpretation and identification on standard 2D imaging. With the introduction of 3D imaging, lesions and encompassing anatomical structures have a definite distinction. It’s a definitive advantage to utilize 3D imagine in dentistry.

Other Uses

3D imagery in dentistry is utilized for not only diagnosing pain and problems, but in constructing dental fixtures and planning a patient’s treatment. In some cases, this imaging takes the place of the traditional method of taking impressions with plaster or cement. The extremely high level of data obtained with this equipment means faster diagnosis of all sorts of dental issues. It is yet another example of how technology advances medicine.