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Candy Buy Back November 1st thru November 9th

November 1st, 2018

Our Annual Halloween Candy Buy Back starts November 1st and runs through November 9th.  Drop off your extra Halloween candy any time during our regular office hours.  Each child will receive $1 per pound (up to 5 pounds) and an entry into our drawing for a $25 Target gift card.  Adults are also welcome to donate, but will not be eligible for the drawing or the $/pound.  All candy will be donated to our troops.

We can't wait to see you all in the office!

Keep your teeth healthy and donate your candy!

Healthy Snacks for Back to School

July 25th, 2018

Back-to-School-Time is a great opportunity to discuss healthy options for school lunches and snacks for the upcoming school year.  Of course fruits and vegetables are wonderful choices.  Proteins such as meats, nuts, cheeses and beans are also great for overall and dental health.  Where we start to get into trouble are the carbohydrate-type snacks such as cookies, granola bars, and candy.  The bacteria that cause dental decay use the sugars from these foods to live.  The more sugar that is present, the more "food" the bacteria have to survive and turn into acid that can destroy enamel and cause tooth decay.

In addition to sugary food, sugary drinks can also be harmful to our dental health.  The sugars from juice can also be use by cavity-causing bacteria to cause tooth decay.  Drinking water or milk are the best choices, but if you are going to drink juice, find juices that have the lowest sugar content.  Many sports drinks are also full of sugar.  Reading the labels on drinks is the only way to know exactly how much sugar is in them.

We wish everyone a happy and healthy school year!

National Candy Month

June 26th, 2018

June is National Candy Month, so what better time to discuss the impact that sugary treats can have on your teeth?

We know that many of our patients love candy...in fact, we do too!  However, knowing some tips and alternatives in order to minimize the damage that candy can cause is always helpful.

Let's start by addressing some of the worst aspects of candy:  The longer candy is in your mouth, the more damaging it can be.  Hard candy that you suck on falls into this category.  Instead of eating the candy within a couple minutes, and then allowing your saliva to start to neutralize and wash it away, sucking on hard candies for long periods of time, allows your teeth to be continually bathed in sugar. Alternatively, if you eat hard candy quickly and crunch down on it, you risk fracturing a tooth, filling or even a crown!  If you've got to satisfy your hard candy fix, opt for a hard candy with an alternative sweetener (something not made from sugar, such as Xylitol) and don't bite down on it.

Chewy and sticky candy can also wreak havoc in your mouth.  The stickier and chewier candy is, the more it bind to your teeth, especially all of those little grooves on the chewing surface of your molars.  Again, the longer the sugars are present in those little grooves, the more likely that the sugars will cause damage.  Also, chewy and sticky candy can bind to permanent crowns and pull these off rather easily.  Avoiding chewy and sticky candy altogether is probably your best bet here.

"Is gum chewing OK for my teeth?" is a question we get often.  Chewing gum that has the sweetener Xylitol in it, can actually fight cavities!  Your best bet is reading the label on gum to see if it contains Xylitol or real sugar.  The downfalls to gum chewing (even with Xylitol in it) can include the gum binding to crowns and pulling them off.  For some people, chewing gum can exacerbate the tightness of their chewing muscles, causing pain and discomfort.  If you're going to chew gum, choose one with Xylitol in it.  If you notice your jaw joints and jaw muscles are feeling tight or painful, stop chewing gum for a few days a give your muscles and joints a break.

We hope that your June is filled with delicious treats in celebration of National Candy Month, but proceed with caution!

Teeth Whitening

June 5th, 2018

Whether there is a big occasion coming up, or you are just wanting to freshen up the esthetics of your smile, teeth whitening can be a great option for you.

We will discuss several different options to whiten your teeth in this blog.

The most well-known are whitening strips, that can be bought over the counter.  These typically have a lower strength of Hydrogen Peroxide, which is the active ingredient, than whitening options used professional by dentists.  The greatest benefit to this option is the ease of purchasing.  Most grocery stores sell these types of strips in the dental care section.  However, a major downfall to the strips is the one-size-fits all model.  People have very different sizes and shapes of teeth and with an over-the-counter strip, you are not getting a custom fit of the strip, thus may not achieve optimal results.

A second option is In-Office Whitening, where you schedule an appointment at our office to have your teeth whitened in approximately 2-3 hours.  Most of the time during the appointment, you are relaxed and reclined in the dental chair and can be watching our TVs over head to pass the time!  The benefits to In-Office Whitening are an all-at-once result and no further steps or time are needed at home.  This is a great option prior to a big event, such as wedding, or for the super busy person that just doesn't have time to put towards whitening at home.  One downfall to the in-office whitening, is an increased chance of post-operative sensitivity.  Since In-Office Whitening uses a higher percentage of hydrogen peroxide, you may experience more sensitivity.  However, we always offer our patients that are completing In-Office Whitening, custom fluoride trays to use for sensitivity afterwards.  In most cases, the sensitivity goes away within a couple days.  The fluoride trays, can also then be used for custom at-home whitening in the future!

A third option is At-Home Whitening with custom trays made by our office.  We offer this option *AT NO CHARGE* to all of our patients after they have completed their recommended dental treatment.  In addition, we give one tube of whitening gel to our patients at their cleaning visits, so they can maintain the shade of their smile.  This option is nice, as you, the patient have control over the final shade achieved and have more control over post-operative sensitivity.  If you have achieved your desired shade, you can simply stop using the gel and save it for another time.  Also, if you begin to have sensitivity, you can take a few days off, until it subsides and then try again.  The biggest downfall to this option, however, is the amount of time it takes.  Depending on the percentage of whitening gel you are using, the whitening session can take anywhere between 30 minutes to over night.  In addition, two dental appointments are needed (approximately 15 minutes each) to first, take impressions for the custom trays and second, to deliver the custom trays and ensure proper fit.

We never recommend whitening with any of these methods if you have active dental decay, as this can increase your chance of sensitivity, and can progress the decay at a quicker rate.

We would love to see you at the office soon, for either In-Office Whitening or impressions for At-Home Whitening with custom trays!

https://www.stevensfamilydental.com/teeth-whitening

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