We all know that improving your diet can help you lose weight, gain energy, and feel healthier. But, did you know that watching what you eat can also improve your smile? Keep reading to get more information from our Saint Louis dentists.
It makes sense when you think about it: every single thing that we consume comes into contact with our teeth and gums. Over time, our favorite foods and beverages can alter our smiles. Here are some general truisms about the ways in which dietary decisions can affect oral health:
Acidic foods and drinks can cause dental enamel to thin, become weaker, and develop cracks, chips, and cavities. When your enamel comes into contact with an acidic substance, it temporarily softens, or de-mineralizes. It typically takes 20 to thirty minutes for enamel to re-mineralize after acid exposure. Thinks like coffee, tea, citrus fruits, fruit juices, sodas, and red wine are all quite acidic.
You’ve probably heard, time and time again, that sugar is bad for your smile. This is the case because oral bacteria love to feed on sugars and refined carbohydrates; the more of these things you consume, the more fuel you give bacteria to grow and multiply.
Deeply colored foods and drinks can leave color deposits on your dental enamel over time. The discoloration process is often accelerated when the enamel has thinned and become weaker. Some commonly consumed staining substances include red wine, coffee, chocolate, red sauces, tea, and soda. The biggest culprit when it comes to dental staining is tobacco.
In order to minimize your risk of developing these oral health issues, you want to partner with your dentist to make a personalized treatment plan. Generally speaking, it is better to consume acidic substances and sugars in moderation, and in specific, short sittings, rather than continuously throughout the day. Our Saint Louis dentists are here to answer questions that you may have—give us a call to get started!
Many of us want to improve the appearances of our smiles, but we’re just not sure where to start. How do we got about refreshing and rejuvenating dental aesthetics?
Our Saint Louis cosmetic dentists help our patients to identify cosmetic goals, so that they can move forward with treatments that meet their needs. With that in mind, keep reading to learn about the top 3 aesthetic issues that are aging your smile.
- Untreated Damage
Many of us, despite our best efforts, develop small dental imperfections over time: things like cracks and chips in our enamel. These minor structural issues can make your smile look older, and poorly maintained. The good news is that simple, and fast, treatments like dental bonding can be used to repair enamel conveniently.
- Worn Down Enamel
Teeth are strong, and designed to stand up to wear and tear, but they certainly aren’t indestructible. Our chewing and bite patterns, as well as conditions like bruxism, will cause the edges of dental enamel to thin and become blunted over time. The visual effect of this condition is teeth that appear poorly proportioned and unnaturally short. Dental restorations, veneers, and dental bonding can all be used to build the tooth back up and improve the balance of the smile.
- Dental Discoloration
Natural dental enamel can become discolored for a number of reasons. Environmental staining results from staining foods, drinks, and tobacco products. Additionally, worn down teeth will start to look yellow, because the 2nd layer of the tooth—the dentin—is able to show through the tooth’s surface. Severely injured teeth may take on a dull or gray appearance due to nerve damage. Our team treats dental discoloration with professional whitening treatments (which is best for environmental staining), as well as cosmetic options like veneers and dental bonding.
If you’re dealing with any of these aesthetic issues, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our Saint Louis cosmetic dentists to learn more about your treatment options!
One of the key recommendations of the American Dental Association is that patients undergo professional dental cleanings every six months or so. This I just a general guideline, as certain patients with ongoing health conditions may need to see a dentist more frequently.
These semi-annual cleanings are important for a number of reasons. Today our Saint Louis dentists are giving you more information about what happens at these appointments. We hope that this gives you a better idea of the benefits of professional dental care!
During your semi-annual appointment, our team will perform a number of assessments on your smile:
- We’ll check your natural teeth for signs of cavities and enamel damage
- We’ll examine any restorations you may have, in order to ensure that they are in good shape
- We’ll complete a gum disease assessment
- We’ll screen your smile for signs of developing oral cancers
As you would imagine, prompt identification and treatment of these kinds of oral health issues vastly improves the patient’s prognosis.
During your appointment, our team will also complete a dental cleaning. The goal of this cleaning is to give your smile a clean slate, which you’ll then work to maintain until your next appointment.
- The first step is to clear away newly developed plaque—this the sticky bacterial film that coats our smiles throughout the day.
- Then, we’ll remove tartar, which is plaque that has calcified onto the smile. Tartar cannot be removed at home, so it’s crucial that patients undergo regularly scheduled professional cleanings, so that tartar is not able to build up.
- Finally, we will polish the teeth, to further freshen the smile and minimize discoloration.
Many people are surprised at just how much better their smiles look and feel after a simple dental cleaning. Even if it has been years since you’ve been in to see a dentist, our Saint Louis dental team is here to help you get back on track. Give us a call to get started!
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New Patient Special!
Or $1 custom teeth whitening with new patient exam, complete x-rays, and cleaning at full fee (a $314 value).
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