10Dec

If you are sick with a cold or flu, your oral health probably isn’t your priority. Depending on how sick you are, it can be an exhausting thought just to drag yourself out of bed, much less head to the bathroom to brush your teeth!

However, neglecting your oral hygiene at this time can, unfortunately, can mean bad things for your teeth and gums. Your Santa Monica, CA family dentist doesn’t expect you to be an oral health superstar during this time, but taking care of yourself now can minimize the risk of developing cavities and other oral health issues.

Protect Your Oral Health While You're Sick

Here are a few easy things you can do to protect your oral health, so look them over so you can be prepared the next time you get sick:

  • Put floss on your nightstand – Daily flossing is critical for preventing gum disease, so keep floss on your nightstand. That way, you will be more likely to use it while you are lying in bed with nothing else to do!
  • Stay hydrated – It is common to get dry mouth when you are sick, but the lack of saliva promotes bacterial growth. Many cold medications are also dehydrating, so keep a bottle of water with you at all times. Sucking on sugar-free cough drops can also help stimulate the flow of saliva.
  • Don’t skip brushing – It may be the last thing on your mind, but brushing is just as important when you’re sick. You may be surprised at how brushing can help you feel refreshed, and it has the added benefit of removing decay-producing plaque and bacteria from your mouth.
  • Rinse with water after vomiting –Unfortunately, throwing up is often part of being sick. You will probably be tempted to brush immediately after to get rid of the unpleasant taste in your mouth. However, the acid levels rise in your mouth after vomiting, which can weaken dental enamel. But rinsing with water neutralizes the acid in your mouth and help stop erosion.

Please Call Our Office

If you have questions about caring for your oral health, please call the Santa Monica, CA family dentist. We will be happy to assist you and schedule an appointment for you if necessary!

15Oct

At Carol E. Folette, DDS in Santa Monica, we’ve introduced hundreds of patients to the wonders of dental bonding. It’s a safe, budget-friendly way to improve your smile and send your self-confidence through the roof.

What Is Dental Bonding?

The crux of dental bonding is composite resin - a moldable substance whose color can be customized to that of your teeth. After an examination of your mouth to identify the extent of your bonding needs, the dentist will refine the resin’s color and then mold it into the exact shape required to fit your teeth.

 

For patients, dental bonding brings several important benefits - some cosmetic and some not. These benefits include:

Gap Closure

Celebrities like David Letterman and Lauren Hutton are well-known for their gap-tooth smiles, but whether to address or ignore gap teeth is down to personal preference. For people who prefer “seamless” teeth, dental bonding is an excellent solution. The composite resin can be used to fill the gap, and depending on the width of the space, possibly even close it.

 

For patients with a very wide gap, or who have multiple gaps to address, a better course of action is probably dental veneers, which more effectively cover larger areas. But if you don’t fall into this category, than dental bonding is definitely worth pursuing.

Crack Care & Prevention

Anyone who has ever cracked a tooth can attest to the anxiety that comes with worrying that the crack will grow bigger and contribute to tooth discoloration. What’s needed is an effective solution for fortification, and that’s where dental bonding comes in. Not only can a dental bond reinforce your tooth and stop an existing crack from lengthening, it will also lessen the chances of future cracks developing, thus minimizing the odds of your smile becoming discolored by what are called “craze lines”.

Chip Repair

Aside from cavities, chips are the most common tooth defects, with causes ranging from hard-food consumption and accidents, to aging. A chipped tooth is liable to cause discoloration, weaken the tooth’s structure, and create an “uneven” appearance in your smile. Here again, dental bonding is an effective recourse for resolving discoloration and preventing further chipping and damage. Also, any uneven aspect to your grin is eliminated, restoring your smile to its natural splendor.

Health Benefits

Along with its proven cosmetic advantages, dental bonding is also an effective deterrent to dental health concerns like cavities and exposed roots. Specific to cavities, composite resin (dental bonding’s key component) is a viable alternative to traditional silver fillings. The resin looks more natural, doesn’t possess any health risks, and is more durable than silver/amalgam. Regarding exposed roots, which are typically caused by receding gums, dental bonding is effective at covering the roots and mitigating the sensitivity associated with the exposure. And of course, the ability to color-match is also a big upside.

Choose Dental Bonding and Let Your Smile Shine

Ready to let your smile shine? Dental bonding is an excellent choice for addressing issues like chips, cracks, and gaps, and restoring your smile’s natural appeal. Contact Carol E. Folette, DDS today and learn more about this popular procedure.

24Sep

Do you have dry mouth? Aside from being annoying and uncomfortable, chronic dry mouth can also impact your oral health. 

If you experience dry mouth, one of the first things you should do is consult your Santa Monica family dentist. Having sufficient saliva in your mouth is essential because it acts like a natural cleansing rinse because it contains compounds that kill bacteria in the mouth. Saliva is beneficial because it washes away these bacteria as well as food and other debris on which the bacteria feed.

Reasons for Dry Mouth

  • Medications: Record numbers of people now take prescription medications regularly for conditions like hypertension, depression, anxiety, allergies, pain and more. A common side effect of these medications is dry mouth.
  • Medical conditions: Dry mouth can also be related to certain medical conditions including HIV/AIDS, Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, anemia and hypertension.
  • Dehydration: Another common cause of dry mouth is, not surprisingly, dehydration. You might suffer from dehydration if you have the flu, a high fever, or if you exercise and sweat profusely.

Treating Dry Mouth

How your dentist treats dry mouth depends on the cause. Obviously, if your dry mouth is due to dehydration, drinking plenty of water quickly rehydrates the body, including your mouth. Since many cases of dry mouth are related to prescription medications, your doctor might adjust the dose of the medication you're taking. They may also prescribe a medicine that encourages saliva production.

A diligent routine of proper oral hygiene is essential to help remove bacteria that builds up as a result of dry mouth and results in decay. These bacteria are also a breeding ground for infection and periodontal disease.

Please Call the Santa Monica Family Dentist

Dry mouth should be addressed sooner rather than later, so please call our office to arrange an exam and cleaning appointment. We will provide you with the tools you need to keep your smile healthy and free of disease.