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Good Info For Nursing Moms

May 31st, 2018

So we've posted before about pregnancy and dental health, but what about breastfeeding and dental health? There are things that nursing moms should know for their health and the health of baby. This article from MouthHealthy has a ton of helpful info!

 

Breastfeeding: 6 Things Nursing Moms Should Know About Dental Health

Woman breastfeeding infant

Breastfeeding is one of the first (and most personal) decisions a mother makes for her baby. It can help your baby’s body fight infections and reduce health risks like asthma, ear infections, SIDS and obesity in children. Nursing moms may lower their chances of developing breast and ovarian cancer. But did you know breastfeeding can impact the dental health of both baby and mom? Here’s how:

Breastfeeding May Help Build a Better Bite

Several recent studies, one in Pediatrics in 2015 and one in the August 2017 issue of the Journal of the American Dental Association, found that babies who were exclusively breastfed for the first 6 months were less likely to have teeth alignment issues such as open bites, crossbites, and overbites, than those exclusively breast fed for shorter lengths of time or not at all.

Still, this doesn’t mean your exclusively breastfed baby won’t need braces someday. Other factors, including genetics, pacifier use, and thumbsucking, affect alignment. “Every baby, every child is different,” says Dr. Ruchi Sahota, mother and American Dental Association spokesperson. “The best thing for mom to do is to take the child to the dentist and make sure the dentist is able to monitor eruption, that baby teeth are coming out at the right time and permanent teeth are coming in at the right time.”

You Don’t Have to Wean When Your Baby Gets Teeth

It’s a question that often pops up in parenting message boards and conversations with new moms: Should I stop breastfeeding when my baby starts teething? The answer is not if you don’t want to.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends breastfeeding for the first year of a baby’s life; the World Health Organizationencourages moms to go for two. “As it goes with breastfeeding, every child is different, every mother is different,” Dr. Sahota says. “You should stop breastfeeding when you think it’s the best for you and the baby but not just because the teeth come in.”

Breastfeeding Reduces the Risk for Baby Bottle Tooth Decay

Another benefit of exclusive breastfeeding, Dr. Sahota says, is a reduced risk of baby bottle tooth decay, the frequent, prolonged exposure of the baby’s teeth to drinks that contain sugar. This type of tooth decay often occurs when a baby is put to bed with a bottle – even ones containing formula, milk or fruit juice. (Water is fine because the teeth won’t be bathed in sugary liquids for a prolonged time.) It most often occurs in the upper front teeth, but other teeth may also be affected.

Breastfed Babies Can Still Get Cavities

It’s one of the most common questions nursing mothers ask: Can breastfeeding cause cavities? Yes, it can. Although natural, breast milk, just like formula, contains sugar. That is why, breastfed or bottlefed, it’s important to care for your baby’s teeth from the start. A few days after birth, begin wiping your baby’s gums with a clean, moist gauze pad or washcloth every day. Then, brush her teeth twice a day as soon as that first tooth emerges. Use fluoride toothpaste in an amount no more than a smear or the size of a grain of rice.

Need Dental Work Done? Double Check Your Medications

If you need to have a dental procedure that requires medication while nursing, check with your dentist, personal physician and pediatrician to make sure it is safe for baby. “It’s important to know there are antibiotics we can give you that won’t hurt the baby,” Dr. Sahota says. “It’s not only safe to go to the dentist while you’re pregnant and while you’re nursing, it’s very important to do so for the best health of your child.”

Another helpful resource for nursing moms is the U.S National Library of Medicine’s Drugs and Lactation Database (LactMed). Simply search for any medication and get information about how it affects your supply, your baby and if there’s an alternative available. Talk to your doctor about what you find.

Mom, Take Care of Yourself

Dr. Sahota says there’s one thing she sees in new moms, breastfeeding or not. “I definitely see moms who are, as simple as it sounds, are not able to take care of themselves as well as they did before the baby,” she says. “Moms that are just not brushing as much as they used to, whether they’re brushing once a day or not brushing at all.”

A dip in dental care could lead to more gum disease and cavities. Cavity prevention is especially crucial for moms, as even the simple act of sharing a spoon with could transfer that bacteria into your baby’s mouth. “It’s really important to do the basics: Brush twice a day, floss once a day. See your ADA dentist regularly,” she says. “Make sure you have prevented decay and don’t have any cavities so you don’t transfer that to your baby.”

Dr. Sahota says she also sees more teeth grinding (bruxism) in moms. “I see a lot more head and neck muscle tension, which causes our jaws to be a little bit more tense and then that causes us to grind our teeth,” she says. “Trouble sleeping when we’re pregnant, that can cause us to grind our teeth a little bit. Postnatally, stress can increase and it can also be an issue.”

All moms need to stay hydrated, especially if breastfeeding. “Not drinking enough water, that in itself is a very dangerous thing for your mouth,” she says. “If we have a dry mouth, we put ourselves at risk for gum disease, for cavities, so many things.”

And there’s one last piece of advice Dr. Sahota gives all moms. “Just like if you’re on an airplane, you have to put your oxygen mask on first before you put it on your child,” she says. “If you’re not healthy, you will not have the time and the energy to make sure your children are also healthy.”

The Truth About BPA and Fillings

May 17th, 2018

You have undoubtedly heard of the public concerns over BPA. Everywhere you turn there are new "BPA-free" products and packages. But what about dental materials? If you are concerned about BPA in your fillings, this article from MouthHealthy may put your mind at ease:

Bisphenol A (BPA)

Empty, clear plastic bottles

Bisphenol A (BPA) is a chemical that has been used to manufacture polycarbonate plastics and epoxy resins for more than 50 years. Epoxy resins containing BPA are used in some dental sealants and composites.

Some scientific studies have suggested that BPA, like soy and phthalates (chemicals added to plastics to increase flexibility and durability), may affect reproduction and development in animals by mimicking the effects of the female hormone estrogen. This has raised concerns about its safety. To date, these effects have not been observed in humans. The amount of BPA to which people are exposed is estimated to be much lower than the amount of BPA exposure considered safe by government agencies.

The ADA believes any concern about potential BPA exposure from dental sealants or composites is unwarranted at this time. When compared with other sources of BPA, these dental materials pose significantly lower exposure concerns.

Be Wise About Your Wisdom Teeth!

May 3rd, 2018

Have you been putting off getting your wisdom teeth removed? Sure, it may be a little nerve wracking, but you'll be glad you got it done in the long run!

This article from MouthHealthy details the reasons why taking care of your wisdom teeth early is important:

Wisdom Teeth

With age comes wisdom. Specifically, wisdom teeth.

Your mouth goes through many changes in your lifetime. One major dental milestone that usually takes place between the ages of 17 and 21 is the appearance of your third molars. Historically, these teeth have been called wisdom teeth because they come through at a more mature age.

When they come through correctly, healthy wisdom teeth can help you chew. It’s normal to feel a little discomfort when your wisdom teeth appear, but if you have pain, see your dentist immediately.

Room to Grow?

Wisdom teeth can lead to problems if there isn’t enough space for them to surface or they come through in the wrong position. If your dentist says your wisdom teeth are impacted, he or she means they are trapped in your jaw or under your gums.

As your wisdom teeth make their way through your gums, your dentist will be monitoring your mouth for signs of the following:

  • Wisdom teeth that aren’t in the right position can allow food to become trapped. That gives cavity-causing bacteria a place to grow.
  • Wisdom teeth that haven’t come in properly, which can make it difficult to floss between the wisdom teeth and the molars next to them.
  • Wisdom teeth that have partially come through can give bacteria a place to enter the gums and create a place for infection to occur. This may also lead to pain, swelling and stiffness in your jaw.
  • Wisdom teeth that don’t have room to come through are thought by some to crowd or damage neighboring teeth.
  • A wisdom tooth that is impacted can form a cyst on or near the impacted tooth. This could damage the roots of nearby teeth or destroy the bone that supports your teeth.

Why You Might Need to Have Your Wisdom Teeth Removed

Every patient is unique, but in general, wisdom teeth may need to be removed when there is evidence of changes in the mouth such as:

  • Pain
  • Infection
  • Cysts
  • Tumors
  • Damage to neighboring teeth
  • Gum disease
  • Tooth decay (if it is not possible or desirable to restore the tooth)

Your dentist may also recommend removal of wisdom teeth as part of treatment for braces or other dental care.

Before making any decisions, your dentist will examine your mouth and take an x-ray. Together, you and your dentist can discuss the best course of treatment.

Keeping Your Wisdom Teeth?

Wisdom teeth that are not removed should continue to be monitored because the potential for developing problems later on still exists. As people age, they are at greater risk for health problems—and that includes potential problems with their wisdom teeth. Be sure to, floss around your wisdom teeth and visit your dentist regularly. Regular dental visits allow your dentist to evaluate your wisdom teeth and your overall dental health.

 

3-2-1 GLO!

April 26th, 2018

Ever tried tooth whitening with less than desirable results? Some teeth whitening solutions cause sensitivity or pain following application. The same bleaching agents that brighten your teeth can also cause you discomfort. So what's the point? Well, if you've sworn off teeth whitening for this reason, you may want to explore new options...

We at Got Smile are excited that we now offer the award-winning Glo Whitening System! This system is unique because it is 100% "zinger" free. In clinical trials all of the participants noticed immediate results and NONE reported any pain or sensitivity following treatment. This is due to the absence of sensitivity-causing ingredients commonly present in other tooth-whitening products: alcohol and carbamide-peroxide.

GLO stands for Guided Light Optic. The GLO Brilliant Teeth Whitening Device, used along with the whitening gel and mouthpiece, illuminates with a bright blue light as it gently warms. According to GLO's website, "heat accelerates the whitening gel inside the closed system mouthpiece, resulting in faster, more efficient, and longer lasting whitening without the sensitivity. It is clinically proven to whiten teeth by five shades in as little as five days with little to no sensitivity."

Still unconvinced? GLO is also convenient, because you can either whiten in-office or in the comfort of your home! The take-home kit includes everything you need to get started, including the GLO mouthpiece and hands-free controller.

For more information see GLO's website

We can't wait to share GLO with you! Feel free to stop by or call us (402-393-2484) with any questions. :)

 

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