Why You Shouldn’t Open Things With Your Teeth

Every day we use different tools to accomplish something. Whether it is fixing a tire or opening a can of pickles. Sometimes the tools we use are simply our two hands. Sometimes we need an electric drill. Something we shouldn’t use as tools are our teeth. Biting our fingernails is a common one. Using our teeth to open a bag of chips is another. Opening the following items with your teeth may seem like a good idea but it is just not worth the risk of damaging those pearly whites.

Packages

Any sort of sealed package like a bag of chips, an object that is in shrink-wrap, or closed boxes with packing tape usually require a sharp edge of some sort to open. It’s certainly appealing to quickly rip into them with your teeth because you think it saves time, but the sharp plastic of shrink-wrap or tape can result in cuts, and if the material doesn’t tear easily, you can even dislocate your jaw out of place from the strain of trying to tear it.

Bottles

You might think you are impressing people because you know how to pop the metal top off of a glass bottle with your teeth, but you run the risk of chipping or cracking a tooth in the process. The sharp metal edge of a bottle cap could cut your gums or mouth and if the glass breaks you would have further injury. If you don’t have a bottle opener handy, you can also bang it open on a sturdy table edge.

Nuts or Seeds in a Shell

It seems convenient to use your teeth to open a nutshell and hey if a squirrel can do it then why not right? Wrong! You are very likely to end up with a cracked or chipped tooth instead of a cracked shell. It’s worth the effort to look through your kitchen drawer for that nutcracker. It just might save you an emergency trip to the dentist office.

Sales Tags

Sales tags on clothes are annoying. And sometimes seem relatively easy to remove. But don’t underestimate the strength of that plastic. They can be surprisingly strong and hard to break. And will make a weakened tooth worse. Save yourself a damaged tooth and use a pair of scissors or nail clippers instead.

No matter what the object is, it’s never a good idea to use your teeth as tools for anything other than chewing your food. But if you ever find yourself with a damaged tooth Clark Family Dental offers cosmetic dentistry and restorative dentistry treatments. We are here to help and will answer any questions you may have. Contact us today!

Diabetes and Oral Health

Diabetes can lead to many health problems which can be overwhelming. Clark Family Dental is here to help with oral health related issues as a result of Diabetes. Did you know that Diabetes can lead to gum and teeth problems? Without addressing these issues and without proper care any oral health problems you may have will just get worse, which can lead to even more health issues. This is why It’s important to be aware of the oral symptoms that Diabetes can lead to.

Dry mouth and Gum Disease

Dry mouth is one of the most common problems that those with Diabetes have. You have probably experienced this for yourself or have heard someone talk about it. Dry mouth symptoms can include a dry tongue, dry and cracked lips, difficulty chewing, swallowing and talking. These are all annoying and uncomfortable but more importantly than that, dry mouth can also lead to more serious issues. Because Diabetes reduces your mouth’s saliva production it can make your teeth more vulnerable to decay and lead to gum disease. Saliva helps wash away plaque and tartar; the less saliva that is in your mouth, the more likely chance you have of plaque and tartar build up.

Diabetes can reduce the blood supply to the gums which increases the risk of gum disease. One form of gum disease is gingivitis and if left untreated can lead to more serious issues. Diabetes also reduces the body’s resistance to infection and it puts the gums at risk even further for gingivitis.

Oral Surgery Complications

Diabetes can complicate oral surgery if you ever need it, especially if it is poorly controlled. Because Diabetes reduces the body’s resistance to infection it also makes it harder to heal which can increase the risk of disease. Sometimes you blood sugar levels may be more difficult to control after oral surgery as well. As a result, It is important to find a dentist that is aware and sensitive to your needs and has your best interest at heart.

At Clark Family Dental we understand that having Diabetes can be overwhelming, especially when you are first learning about it. We keep up-to-date on periodontal therapy and we can work together with your physician if needed to find the best solution for you. We want you to feel comfortable working with us and the treatment you need will be specialized and tailored toward your specific condition. Clark Family Dental is your clear choice in the New Albany area. Contact us today.

New Year’s Dental Health Resolutions

We have started a new year. Do you have resolutions? We all want to make goals and they usually include bettering ourselves in some way. What if one goal could help you look and feel better? What if accomplishing that goal was right around the corner and could improve your smile and as a result confidence? Making a dental health goal for yourself can do just that. Whether you would like help in preventative dentistry or you would like to take that smile from ordinary to extraordinary, we can help you accomplish it! Our friendly staff is here to help you with your New Year’s Resolution of obtaining that sparkling smile that you’ve always wanted.

All too often people get discouraged about their New Year’s resolution because it’s too big or they feel too overwhelmed after a few days or weeks. They haven’t planned well enough or they get too busy and forget to keep track of their original plan. Maybe at the beginning they had some support but soon everyone gets too busy with their own lives and the support starts to dwindle. What if we could make the plan for you? What if we planned out the goals and made the appointments for you? What if we were your own personal hotline to answer any questions you may have on your specific plan? What if we said that it is our job to support you and we love it? Would you want to know more?

That goal of a beautiful smile is right around the corner and more attainable than you think. We have a bright office and friendly staff that are ready and excited to help you to achieve your dream smile. We can lay out a plan that works best for you and your schedule. No more feeling discouraged about not accomplishing your resolution. A few steps taken by you and the rest is up to us and you can feel confident that we take pride and care in helping our patients accomplish their beautiful smile goal. You won’t feel any pressure from us, we are here to serve you and find the best suited plan that fits your life and goals. What are you waiting for? Ready to feel confident again? Ready to take on your day with a glowing smile? We love our current patients and are also accepting new patients so contact us today and make your first appointment in accomplishing that New Year’s Resolution of having a more beautiful and healthy smile!

Helpful Tips To Cope With Dental Fear

Dental Phobia Is Real

If dental appointments make you nervous, then you aren’t alone. Unfortunately, because regular dental checkups are essential to your overall oral care, skipping check ups can exacerbate dental problems. Here are a few tips for overcoming dental fear, so that you can get the dental care that you need:

Tips for Overcoming Dental Fear

  • Establish a Hand Signal to Stop Treatment: It isn’t always easy to communicate with your dentist when his or her hands are in your mouth, which is why establishing a hand signal is such a good idea. Before your appointment begins, agree on a hand signal with your dentist that will tell your doctor that you need a break. For example, you could hold up your index finger to show that you need a break.
  • Read More About Your Procedures: Sometimes, people are simply afraid of the unknown. If you are nervous about undergoing a procedure that you are unfamiliar with, take a few minutes to research the topic. Reading about root canals or crown placements might not seem like a fun topic to research, but when you know what is happening, you might not be as likely to stress.
  • Ask for Laughing Gas: If your dentist offers Nitrous oxide, also called laughing gas, consider making it a regular part of your dental visits. This safe, breathable gas relaxes patients, so that you can kick back and stay calm.
  • Bring Distractions: Consider bringing along a few distractions, such as a smartphone or a friend. Instead of listening to drills and suction tools, you might be able to relax and enjoy your favorite music or podcast. Friends or family members can talk with you or hold your hand, which can help to soothe your nerves.

Here at Clark Family Dental, our goal is to make each and every one of our patients as comfortable as possible. If you have dental appointment anxiety, please let us know. We will do everything in our power to make your visit relaxing.

Toothbrushing Tips

At Clark Family Dental, we provide preventive dentistry in New Albany. When you come to see us, we will treat you with respect and as an individual. Each person has different dental hygiene needs and is at a different point when it comes to having a healthy, happy smile. We will work with you and take the time to talk to you about what your oral hygiene concerns are.

One of the best ways to maintain good dental health is by brushing your teeth regularly and maintaining good brushing habits. Your toothbrush is the main tool you have to maintain oral health.

So, we have assembled some tips on how to correctly brush teeth.

-Brush your teeth gently two times a day for two minutes each time. Be careful not to scrub too hard as this can damage gums.

-Replace your toothbrush every three to four months. If the bristles on your toothbrush start to fray or curl, replace your toothbrush.

-Rinse the toothbrush after you use it.

-Let your toothbrush dry between each use. In a closed container, a toothbrush can grow bacteria.

-Don’t share toothbrushes.

What kinds of toothbrushes are best?

Soft versus hard bristles

While hard bristles may make it easier to scrub the plaque away, they aren’t better overall. In the end, hard bristles also scrape off tooth enamel and can bother gums. This can even lead to a greater risk of gum recession.

We recommend using a soft-bristle brush and ditching any toothbrushes that have hard bristles.

Manual versus powered brushes

As technology has improved, modern electric toothbrushes have become better at reaching plaque in hard-to-reach spots than manual brushes. While in the past there wasn’t a big difference, many electric brushes today have benefits over manual toothbrushes.

Electric toothbrushes have been found to reduce plaque by up to 21 percent more than a manual toothbrush. Also, it can be easier to brush for two minutes with an electric brush as you don’t have to press down as hard.

How should toothbrushes be stored?

Store the toothbrush upright in a place where it can dry out. Also, make sure you keep your toothbrush stored in a place as far away from the toilet as you can.

Schedule an Appointment

If it’s been awhile since you’ve last seen a dentist, schedule an appointment at Clark Family Dental. Our staff members are friendly and helpful. We are happy to schedule appointments for new and existing patients.

Halloween Tips and Tricks for Maintaining Oral Health

At Clark Family Dental, we know that Halloween is a fun time of year full of tricks and treats. As your New Albany dentist, we are particularly concerned about the “treats” part of Halloween. We know that everyone deserves to have some treats sometimes. But, all those sweets and treats hanging around can be tempting, and this can lead to some oral hygiene consequences if you aren’t careful. We can help you keep your oral hygiene, and the oral hygiene of your kids, in tip-top shape during Halloween.

This guide of tips and tricks from our staff at Clark Family Dental can help you enjoy the sweets that are around while still making sure your family maintain healthy mouths and bright smiles.

Here are our suggestions:

1: Use good brushing and flossing habits to keep the treat damage at bay

Brushing your teeth helps prevent tooth decay. After eating candy or sweets, brush and floss your teeth. This can help keep the bacteria away and mitigate some of the damage caused by sugary candies and sweets.

2: Make a plan for you and your family.

Deciding ahead of time how many treats to let your kids eat is a good way to keep them from ingesting too much. There isn’t one way to do this, but you could decide to have your kids only eat a few pieces of candy a day, or something along those lines.

3: Eat candy and sweets with your meals.

Saliva production increases during meals. This helps wash away harmful bacteria that can cause cavities and tooth decay. If you and your family eat treats around the same time that you eat meals, it can reduce the risk of tooth decay.

4: Plan on eating healthier snacks when you get an urge to eat more treats.

We all can have a sweet tooth sometimes, but, if you make a plan ahead of time, you can have an alternative in place. We’re not saying you can never have some of that Halloween candy, but, sometimes, another option is a good idea.

Schedule an Appointment

After this season of treats and spooks is over, it’s a good time to schedule an appointment with Clark Family Dental for a check-up. We can schedule an exam or cleaning at a time that works with your schedule. We are always happy to help give more ideas on how to help your family maintain good oral hygiene as the holiday season approaches.

Why You Need to Replace That Missing Tooth

Are you missing a tooth? If you have a tooth that has been extracted, it leaves behind a large gap in your smile. It is in your best interest to replace the tooth as a missing tooth can lead to a number of oral health problems. Clark Family Dental specializes in providing patients with affordable, long-lasting dental procedures, allowing you to enjoy sharing your smile with others. Here are some of the reasons why you need to replace a missing tooth.

Teeth Shifting and Bite Problems

When a tooth is extracted, the area in the mouth no longer has a support in place to keep the other teeth from moving. It is common to see the other teeth start to shift, leading to a crooked smile. Shifting teeth can cause several issues with your bite, and can even lead to differences in your speech. It is important to meet with a dentist soon after an extraction to discuss the options that are available for missing teeth replacement in New Albany, OH. Dental implants are the preferred option as they are long-lasting, and look as close to a traditional tooth as possible.

Face Shape Alteration

When teeth are extracted from the mouth, they no longer have a root structure in place to continue nourishing the jawbone. The body stops sending nutrients to the jawbone, which will lead to bone deterioration. As the bone begins to deteriorate, it can cause the shape of your face to change. Quite often the cheeks will start to have a “sunken in” look to them. Dental implants are the best option as they do continue to keep the jawbone strong, keeping your appearance the same.

TMJ

Many patients end up with a condition known as temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ) following an extraction. TMJ is when the upper and lower jaws do not meet properly, causing excess stress on the jaw joint, leading to pain and possibly can lock a jaw in place. It is important to meet with a dentist regularly to check for shifting of the alignment of your teeth as it can lead to TMJ and other painful conditions.

Gum Disease

Without the teeth in place to nourish the mouth, we often see an increase in gum disease. Gum disease occurs when the teeth shift out of alignment and patients are unable to reach all the areas in the mouth properly to remove plaque and bacteria.

Contact Clark Family Dental today to discuss your options for missing teeth replacement New Albany, OH. We want to help you be proud of your smile by offering effective, long-lasting oral health solutions. Call today to schedule your consultation.

Back to School Dental Tips

School is in full swing, which means a lot of kids are back into their routines, but are you making sure they are caring for their teeth correctly? The rush to get ready for school in the morning can lead many children to forget to brush and floss their teeth. Proper oral health habits are essential to preventing cavities. Scheduling a visit with your dentists in New Albany, OH, is a great way to help your kids remember the importance of proper oral hygiene. Here are some other back to school dental tips to help keep your child’s teeth strong and healthy this school year.

Daily Timers

A great way to help kids to remember to brush and floss is to set a timer. Have one in the morning and another in the evening before bed. Reminders like this can go a long way to strengthening the teeth enamel and safeguarding teeth from cavities and other issues like gingivitis.

The Importance of Water

Remind your child to drink plenty of water throughout the day. Water helps to flush excess bacteria from the mouth, reducing the likelihood of plaque leading to cavities. Unlike sodas and other sugary drinks, water doesn’t stick to the teeth.

Healthy Snacks and Lunches

If you pack home lunches for your child, plan on packing healthy lunches. Avoid the sugary supplies like fruit snacks as they can stick to a child’s teeth. Vegetables and fruits are great alternatives, and some of them even help to clean the teeth when they chew on them. Remember to pack a water over sugary drinks and milk as both of these items increase the bacteria in the mouth that leads to tooth decay.

Use Mouthguards

For children that play contact sports, consider using a custom mouthguard. A mouthguard will help to protect a child’s teeth if they do get hit while playing sports. The mouthguard protects teeth from enamel damage due to grinding.

Schedule Annual Cleanings

Make it a habit to schedule a cleaning and exam for your child in the spring and fall. Annual dental visits are one of the best ways to prevent cavities and ensure your child’s teeth and gums are. As teeth continue to develop and your child starts losing teeth, it is important to meet with a dentist to discuss their orthodontic needs. Planning ahead for braces is helpful for many families with multiple children that need expensive orthodontic care in the future.

For more information about back to school dental tips, visit your dentists in New Albany, OH, today!

Why You Should Brush Your Tongue

Have you ever thought about including your tongue in your oral hygiene routine? Here at your favorite Albany family dentist, we want you to know why thinking about your tongue can also save your teeth! It makes it possible for you to eat, drink, taste food, swallow, whistle, and speak. Ignoring it is a bad idea!Learn why you should brush your tongue from your Albany family dentist.

Why Should I Brush My Tongue?

Your tongue has lots of bumps and crevices that harbor hundreds of different kinds of bacteria, dead skin cells, and food particles. There’s also a very thin layer of mucus that covers it for protection. Not cleaning it can lead to some pretty bad breath, discoloration, oral yeast infections, and gum disease. A filthy tongue can even dull your taste buds!

While mouthwash kills some bacteria and freshens breath, it isn’t quite enough. The biofilm that accumulates will only die off with mouthwash for a time. But, the under-layer will continue to grow, rubbing off on your teeth and gums. You must remove the bacteria on your tongue by brushing.

How Do I Brush My Tongue?

Every time you brush your teeth (at least twice per day), brush your tongue too. You can brush back and forth and from side to side, but not too hard! If you break the skin, it will be painful, damage your taste buds, and be at risk for infection. You can either use the rest of the toothpaste in your mouth after brushing, or use a small bead of toothpaste and focus on the top of the tongue, starting at the back and moving forward. Use gentle pressure and then rinse with water.

If brushing your tongue is uncomfortable, you may be scrubbing too hard. The skin can become inflamed when irritated, so hold off for a couple of days if that happens. If you have a sore on your tongue, don’t make it worse by brushing. Consult our dentists for advice on how to proceed with a delicate tongue. If you have a sensitive gag reflex, try cleaning the back of your tongue very slow and light at first, to get used to the feeling. Hum a tune to override the reflex and get the job done.

It’s a pretty simple thing to add to your routine, so making it a habit shouldn’t take long. Your Albany family dentistry wants your smile to shine! If you have any questions about your dental health, contact us today.

Protect Your Teeth This Summer

Concerned about your child's teeth this summer? Get a custom mouthguard!Summer is finally here, which means so are summer sports and lots of activities. A simple day at the beach or an escape to the waterpark could end up with an emergency dental visit from a simple run in. How can you keep your kid’s from causing serious damage to their teeth this summer? Here are some tips from New Albany Pediatric Dentist to help you and your kids stay safe this summer.

Prepare and Prevent

One of the best things you can do for your kids is to prepare them for summer with mouthguards. If your kids play contact sports, mouthguards are one of the best pieces of equipment you can use to help them prevent cracked and broken teeth. Mouthguards can even help if your kids do swimming activities like waterskiing and wakeboarding. Many people think swimming sports do not need mouthguards. But, more often than not, people will end up clenching their teeth when they swim. A mouthguard helps to prevent prevent teeth grinding, which could end up ruining the teeth and cause jaw pain.

Emergency Plan of Action

What happens if you have a tooth knocked out? Can you replace the tooth? Our New Albany dentist specialist in emergency dental treatments and we can often save a knocked out tooth. If we are unable to save the tooth, we do have various cosmetic dentistry procedures we can use to replace the missing tooth. We provide emergency dental hours to help patients after hours and during business hours for any serious dental problem.

Safety First

When playing outside this summer, remind your children of the importance of being aware of their surroundings. Children often get carried away in different activities. Their failure to pay attention to their surroundings can lead to a serious oral health emergency. When they are playing different sports, give them the right mouthguard and helmet to reduce the risk of injury to the mouth.

Contact your New Albany Cosmetic Dentist

If you have lost a tooth this summer, or you ended up with a nasty broken tooth, call our office immediately. We have many cosmetic dentistry treatments to restore the tooth and perfect your smile once again. We know how easily accidents happen. Don’t let a day at the park end up costing you a beautiful smile! Call our office to get fitted for your personalized mouthguard and for any cosmetic dentistry needs you have.