Summertime Is No Reason to Ignore Your Smile | Snohomish Dentist

If there is any word that goes hand in hand with summertime, that word would be vacation. The weather is glorious and the kiddies are off school. Time to make a few memories with the ones you love most during this deliciously delightful time of year. We pack a few things and off we go…off to spend a few days being carefree.

But before you hit the road, take a few moments to prepare for an emergency we never really think about: an oral one. From BBQs to travel plans, summertime is definitely a time of year we throw caution to the wind and devour anything that tickles our fancy. Be cognizant of the amount of sugars you intake (carbs and alcohol are also sugars!), and drink lots of water to stay hydrated and keep saliva production active. The more saliva you produce, the more protection you’re giving your mouth from cavity-forming bacteria and bad breath. Practicing your oral hygiene daily is a top priority when tasting all the delicious goodies at your disposal. No one wants to come home to a mouth full of cavities after a wonderful time away.

Carrying a dental first aid kit is a pretty smart idea if you are planning to spend lots of time outdoors. It’s also a great idea to have a local dental contact handy in case something major happens and immediate action is necessary. Being proactive on a vacation saves a lot of stress, and isn’t that exactly what you’re there to do?


If you are seeking help to improve your smile during your vacation, call Dr. Haines in Snohomish, WA at 360-568-8577 or visit www.tedhainesdds.com.

Dr. Haines proudly serves Snohomish, Monroe, Lake Stevens, Everett, Mill Creek, Woodinville, and surrounding areas.

 

Dental Crowns: Why They Are the Ideal Solution | Snohomish Dentist

When the goal is to have the best smile possible, there may be times we need some extra help to achieve it. Luckily, if our tooth is cracked or damaged, we have ways to fix it, namely a dental crown. So, what are their benefits? Take a look…

Undergoing a dental crown procedure can improve the look of broken or cracked teeth. If you are suffering from a loss of teeth, dental crowns are the solution to replace any missing teeth.

One of the best reasons to get a dental crown is because they look extremely natural, so no one will ever know that you have had dental work done. The porcelain and composite resin crowns match the exact shade of your natural teeth.

For those of you who are consistent coffee drinkers, dental crowns are perfect because they are stain-resistant due to the porcelain used to create them, making dingy teeth are a thing of the past.

Another great point is that dental crowns can last up to 15 years so you don’t need to worry about them as long as you look after them.

Dental crowns are restorative and preventive measures that improve missing or damaged teeth. Dental crowns also drastically decrease the amount of bacteria build-up that can lead to the loss of more teeth.

If you are seeking help to improve your smile and are interested in dental crowns call Dr. Haines in Snohomish, WA at 360-568-8577 or visit www.tedhainesdds.com.

Dr. Haines proudly serves Snohomish, Monroe, Lake Stevens, Everett, Mill Creek, Woodinville, and surrounding areas.

Are Strawberries Good for Our Teeth? | Snohomish Dentist

There is nothing more delicious than a fresh strawberry on a warm Spring day. If it’s homegrown, it’s even tastier. But are they good for your teeth? Reports are conflicting. Some have touted a strawberry-baking soda paste mixture as a healthy, natural way to whiten your teeth. Some have said that the acidity in strawberries are damaging the tooth enamel. So, which is correct? Let’s take a look at the facts:

Strawberries are a sweet juicy fruit that have both citric and malic acids. These acids, when combined with baking soda, have been known to brighten your teeth. However, like lemons, the whitening agent the acidity brings can potentially erode tooth enamel. In fact, Ran Kwon, a tooth whitening researcher at the University of Iowa delved into this subject through a series of experiments.

Kwon first rubbed a mixture of baking soda and California-grown organic strawberries on 20 recently extracted human molars for 5 minutes, and then brushed the teeth gently. She repeated this procedure three times daily for 10 days, which is what the original recipe called for.

What resulted was that these teeth brushed with the strawberry and baking soda formula showed no real whitening, based on two color-measurement tests, and an examination with a scientific instrument that detects colors known as a spectrophotometer. Unfortunately, the mixture only removed superficial debris from the teeth. Why?

According to the American Dental Association, this natural concoction lacks hydrogen peroxide and carbamide peroxide and it is these chemicals that make whitening products work.

To find out more about natural teeth whitening, contact Dr. Ted Haines, DDS in Snohomish, WA at 360-568-8577 or visit www.tedhainesdds.com for additional information.

Dr. Ted Haines proudly accepts patients from Snohomish, Monroe, Lake Stevens, Everett, Mill Creek, Woodinville, and surrounding areas.

 

What You Need to Know about Teething Babies | Snohomish Dentist

Babies just don’t get any cuter. New to the world, unaware of anything but mommy, babies are bright-eyed and bushy-tailed to their new surroundings. Everyone wants to hold them and comfort them in any way possible. Life is wonderful! Then around the sixth month, they begin to teethe…

The first real signs of the beginnings of teething happen between six and ten months. This is when their first little chompers start to show themselves. They begin in the front with the top and bottom central teeth, and then later incisors. It can be quite painful for little ones, so make sure you have frozen teething rings, tasty teething biscuits and soothing gels handy. Another tip: using a warm washcloth to sooth those sore gums as they come in. Coincidentally, this will also begin what will be their daily dental routine.

One their first year hits, so will their first molars. The canines, or “fangs”, follow suit within the first year or two. These will make it easier for them to bite down on some of the tougher foods. Tiny jars of baby food will be replaced by real food. And until they learn how to do it themselves, so will your kitchen!

Around the second or third year mark, your tiny human is going to finish up their set of baby teeth with the final molars. The final teeth are the largest ones in their mouth and will be painful coming in, but after they get settled, things will be A-OK.

Your child should begin visiting the dentist around their first year. To schedule baby’s first visit, contact Dr. Ted Haines, DDS in Snohomish, WA at 360-568-8577 or visit www.tedhainesdds.com for additional information.

Dr. Ted Haines proudly accepts patients from Snohomish, Monroe, Lake Stevens, Everett, Mill Creek, Woodinville, and surrounding areas.

5 Way to Whiten Your Teeth Naturally | Snohomish Dentist

489195623White teeth are one of the main keys to a great smile, but life will eventually begin to tinge our teeth to a shade of yellow. Dental whitening trips are ideal, but we can’t always have the procedure done. Thankfully, there are ways you can keep your teeth white longer without having to sit in a dentist’s chair.

Use baking soda and hydrogen peroxide. These two chemicals are antibacterial agents that will not only gently scrub away stains as a paste, but also cleans all of the germs when used as a rinse. Because baking soda is abrasive, you need to be careful the paste isn’t too gritty.

Oil pulling. An ancient tradition, oil pulling is used to balance out the pH in our mouths. Simply put a spoonful of coconut oil in your mouth and swish it between your teeth, or add a few drops to your toothbrush. Coconut oil has antimicrobial properties great for protecting and cleaning your gums.

Apple cider vinegar rinse. makes sense that apple cider vinegar (ACV), which effectively works as a natural antibiotic and teeth/gum cleanser, would also be able to remove stubborn stains on the teeth. ACV is especially helpful for removing stains due to common culprits like coffee and nicotine (smoking).

Save your citrus peels. Rubbing orange or lemon peels over your teeth is a strange, but effective option to whitening teeth. Citric acids can scrub away stains, but can also wear down tooth enamel if used too much.

A healthy diet works wonders. You may not know this, but strawberries are actually great to whiten teeth. Yes, their seeds get stuck in your teeth, but the acids inside are ideal to help remove stains. Smash 4-5 strawberries, apply it to your teeth, then rinse.

For more information regarding teeth whitening, contact Dr. Ted Haines, DDS in Snohomish, WA at 360-568-8577 or visit www.tedhainesdds.com for additional information.

Dr. Ted Haines proudly accepts patients from Snohomish, Monroe, Lake Stevens, Everett, Mill Creek, Woodinville, and surrounding areas.

Teach Them Young | San Antonio Dentist

Boy brushing his teeth

We are born with a clean slate and our instincts aren’t all that great, but they are enough to get us by with the help of an adult. As we grow, we are taught things that will help us get by in life on our own. Along the way, we also pick up habits, both good and bad. The good ones keep us safe, successful and healthy – the others do the opposite. As parents, it is important that we start our children off successful when it comes to forming good habits.

It is a common misconception that a child’s teeth aren’t all that important because they fall out to make way for their permanent ones. Because of this thought process, children aren’t always taught about dental hygiene. Unfortunately, this lack of knowledge leads to tooth decay and more dental visits. Thankfully, there is something we can do to prevent our child’s oral health from declining to that state – teach them young.

In 2013, there was a study done in Scotland that wanted to prove that implementing a nursery tooth brushing program nationwide would reveal a reduction of tooth decay in five-year olds. Each health service administrative board area would distribute a toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste, then supervise the toddler’s teeth brushing practices to teach them proper technique. Once taught, the children would continue the practice at home and over the next twelve years, their dental health would be monitored. Those that were taught in nursery school had a decrease in dental decay from 3.06 to 2.07 once they reached ages 10-12, thus proving that the earlier they are taught to take care of their teeth, the healthier their mouths will be.

Because baby teeth are only temporary, they aren’t as strong as our permanent ones turn out to be. This makes them more susceptible to developing tooth decay. If they aren’t looked after daily, the more frequent (and painful) the tooth decay will be, making this habit a top priority. Once they understand the basics, it is now imperative to keep them motivated enough to continue the process to form a habit. Consistency is key.

A study was done in Ponta Grossa, PR, Brazil in order to prove that it takes more than just the basics to develop a habit. 26 kindergarteners were selected and the presentation was broken up into three stages – zero knowledge, a motivational presentation once basic knowledge was given, and a thirty-day check-up to see if anything stuck. As they learned more about their dental health, they more they would make better choices when it came to their teeth.

It is never too young to teach our little ones about the importance of maintaining a good dental routine. In fact, these studies that have proven that stressing these good dental habits at an early age can not only set the stage for the rest of their lives, but will also decrease the chances of developing tooth decay.

For more information regarding pediatric dentistry, contact Dr. Ted Haines, DDS in Snohomish, WA at 360-568-8577 or visit www.tedhainesdds.com for additional information.

Dr. Ted Haines proudly accepts patients from Snohomish, Monroe, Lake Stevens, Everett, Mill Creek, Woodinville, and surrounding areas.

Don’t Let Thanksgiving Ruin Your Smile | Snohomish Dentist

Happy Thanksgiving wooden blocks against a rustic wood background with pumpkins and autumn leaves
Happy Thanksgiving wooden blocks against a rustic wood background with pumpkins and autumn leaves

Thanksgiving is a holiday all about giving thanks and breaking bread with the people in your life. We stuff ourselves to the gills without any regard of what it could be doing to their waistlines. But what about our teeth? Unfortunately, we rarely consider our dental health when we celebrate these holidays but we really should. Our mouths are susceptible to much more because of it is where we ingest almost everything into our bodies, both good and bad.

So, what do we do to prepare ourselves for this gluttonous holiday? Here are a few things to keep in mind while you are celebrating:

Keep things short and sweet. We all know that this holiday is an all-day event. Between the pre-meal snacks and the post-meal desserts, it’s impossible to not fall victim to grazing the entire day. Keep this to a minimum. The longer you allow the acids in foods to hang out in your mouth, the easier it is for cavity-causing bacteria to invade your teeth and set up camp. Spend more time visiting with your loved ones than you do munching on snacks. And when you do snack, mix healthy snacks with the unhealthy ones to counter-balance any ill effects. Sticky foods, like cranberry relish and pecan pie do a number on your teeth. Keeping acidic foods, like tomatoes or wines, to a minimum will also help. The acid breaks down your teeth’s enamel, making them more susceptible to issues brought on by cavity-causing bacteria. Don’t deprive yourself of these holiday delights. It’s all about moderation.

Stay hydrated. As you consume your holiday meal, keep a glass of water handy. Staying hydrated will not only help with digestion, but drinking plenty of water will also wash away any food debris still lingering around in your mouth. Saliva is your mouth’s natural defender against the bad bacteria in your mouth.

Keep your routine. We can’t forget to pay special attention to our teeth during this delicious holiday. They work overtime for you during times like these. Make sure you brush, floss and rinse the way you normally would. Scratch that, pay more attention to them. Your teeth don’t know you’re celebrating. After the holidays, be sure to make an appointment for a quick dental check-up. You never know what your celebrating has done to your mouth. It’s always better to catch any issues before they turn ugly.

For more information regarding cavity prevention during the holiday season, contact Dr. Ted Haines, DDS in Snohomish, WA at 360-568-8577 or visit www.tedhainesdds.com for additional information.

Dr. Ted Haines proudly accepts patients from Snohomish, Monroe, Lake Stevens, Everett, Mill Creek, Woodinville, and surrounding areas.

How to Prevent Gums from Receding | Snohomish Dentist

periodontal smallAccording to the New York Times, more than 75% of adults in America will have some sort of gum disease in their lifetime. Gingivitis is the early stages of periodontal disease, caused by plaque formed along the gum line. Periodontal disease, like gingivitis, can cause your gums to become red, sore and inflamed. It could also cause your gums to bleed.

Thankfully, gingivitis is easily remedied. By continuing to brush, floss and rinse daily, you are going to be reversing the effects the gingivitis has on your gums. Visiting your dentist for a good office cleaning is also going to help heal any sort of gingivitis you may be developing. Because if left untreated, it will lead to periodontitis. Periodontitis will cause the inner layer of gum and bone to pull away. If left untreated, the spaces allow debris to collect, causing the gums to become infected.

We all know we need to keep a daily dental regime if we want our teeth to remain healthy. Visiting the dentist twice a year also takes proactive steps to keeping your smile bright. But if you do happen to develop some form of gum disease, worry not. There are ways you can heal those sore gums with regular everyday items.

Baking Soda. According to the Journal of Clinical Dentistry, baking soda toothpaste is great on your teeth because it helps loosen plaque in those areas harder to reach. For a DIY version, just mix a little bit of baking soda with some water and apply it to your gum line to help aid in keeping the area from getting infected.

Turmeric. Believe it or not, turmeric is the a natural aid for inflammation, which makes it ideal for treating gum disease. Just mix 1 teaspoon of turmeric to ½ teaspoon salt and mustard oil into a paste, and apply it to your infected gums twice a day.

Aloe Vera. Not only does aloe vera soothe a sunburn and aid in healing wounds, but you can also use the organic, food-grade gel to relieve the swelling and pain in your gums. It’s anti-bacterial properties is an all-around soothing agent for your inflamed gums.

Tea Tree Oil. When it comes to antiseptics, tea tree oil is one of the best we have. Just a couple of drops rubbed along the affected area will help ease the symptoms you’re feeling. In fact, it isn’t just limited to gum disease. Tea tree oil also works great on other oral infections, like thrush.

Clove Oil. When it comes to toothaches, nothing beats a little clove oil. But when you have gum disease, applying a little on your gums will help soothe the pain you feel along your gum line. However, using an all-natural clove toothpaste every few days is more beneficial as regular use of clove oil may cause damage to your teeth and gums from overuse.

Coconut Oil. Oil pulling is an ancient process that has tons of health benefits. Lauric acid is one of its components, which helps disinfect and reduce gum inflammation. A tablespoon every morning will naturally hydrate and protect your gums, making gum disease development difficult.

It is important to take care of our teeth by following a regular dental routine and regular dental visits. But when something unfortunate does arise, it’s nice to know there is something we can do to naturally help heal gum disease.

For more information regarding receding gums, contact Dr. Ted Haines, DDS in Snohomish, WA at 360-568-8577 or visit www.tedhainesdds.com for additional information.

Dr. Ted Haines proudly accepts patients from Snohomish, Monroe, Lake Stevens, Everett, Mill Creek, Woodinville, and surrounding areas.

How Do I Protect My Child’s Teeth from Halloween? | Snohomish Dentist

Children In Halloween Costumes Trick Or TreatingIt’s October…that one month of the year that children hold dear to their hearts. Sure, there is Christmas. We all know there’s no competing with Santa. But this is the month that holds something special that even Santa can do – bring them Halloween. It’s the one day of the year that everyone can be anyone or anything they want to be. And above all that, there’s candy. Lots and lots of candy given freely by just saying those three magic words: trick or treat. No need to be good in order to dodge the coal in the stocking. In fact, the ‘trick’ in trick or treat almost praises naughty imp behavior if candy isn’t received. But as your children are scouring the neighborhood for larger haul than the year before, you will need to ask yourself – how can I monitor my child’s oral health during this sugar-infused time of the year?

Here are some oral hygiene tips to keep in mind as your little monsters return with their stash:

Limit the intake. Halloween has to be the coolest time of year for your child’s imagination. For one day, they have the freedom to munch on candy while “fighting crime” dressed as a superhero. Tiny humans live for this day. Depriving them of what some would call a major part of the holiday will not only make your child upset, but won’t make life in your place very peaceful for a minute. So instead of denying them the sweets, have them choose a set number of candies they want the most and let them have them. Whatever they don’t choose, throw it out or freeze it for later. Not only will you know that what they are eating is safe, but you can rest at ease that they aren’t sneaking it behind your back, unleashing the cavities while you aren’t looking.

In addition to the limitation of sweet treats, set up a time of day that your child will be able to eat that candy. Similar to snack time at school, having a time when your little one knows a snack is allowed teaches them that snacking isn’t an all-day event, making them less inclined to crave sweets all day.

Of course, the main defense against Halloween candy-driven cavities is good dental hygiene. Brushing and flossing before bed will prevent cavities from attacking while your little one sleeps. In case you aren’t sure if your child is brushing thoroughly enough, there are various disclosing products you can give your child to find out if their doing a good job brushing by coloring areas in their teeth that have plaque buildup. If they are fully against brushing, let them pick out their own dental stuff. Kids are often swayed by doing grown up things. The key is to make brushing less of a chore and more of a fun way to fight “cavity crime”. Not only will they continue to love Halloween, but they can be their teeth’s superhero all year ‘round!

For more information regarding cavity prevention during Halloween, contact Dr. Ted Haines, DDS in Snohomish, WA at 360-568-8577 or visit www.tedhainesdds.com for additional information.

Dr. Ted Haines proudly accepts patients from Snohomish, Monroe, Lake Stevens, Everett, Mill Creek, Woodinville, and surrounding areas.

Save Your Child’s Teeth From Summertime Sweets | Snohomish Dentist

480865629It’s that time of year again…summertime. The kiddies are out of school, it’s tremendously hot, and everywhere you look, someone is touting the next greatest summertime snack craze. And there is nothing your child wants more. It’s the three months of the year that is a parent’s roughest. Sugary sweets are running rampant and your child’s teeth are their victims. So how does one keep an eye on the oral health of a little human during this sweetest of seasons? It takes some smooth talking, but it can be done.

First thing first: You have to water little humans. They all hate water, but it is the most important drink they can have during the scorching summer heat. They will ask for soda or juice. Do your best to keep it to a minimum, like during a meal so they have to finish it in one sitting. If they can’t carry it around with them, sugary bacteria won’t have time to cling on to their teeth to cause cavities. Chewing also produces saliva, which is your mouth’s natural superhero against cavity-causing bacteria, so meals is actually a great time to indulge in a sweet treat. Flavor up the water by adding different fruit combinations. Not only will it taste better, but it may also get everyone into the habit of drinking it more often.

When it comes to the sweet snacks, keep the same rule of thumb in mind. They don’t need a bag of candy they can munch on all day. Opt for a singular snack they have to eat at once, like a candy bar or an ice cream sandwich. When it comes to snacks, there are loads of options that not only taste yummy, but also help fight against cavity-causing bacteria. The act of chewing automatically produces saliva production, so handy snacks like popcorn or pretzels are great options when you just want to have something to nosh on. Fruits and veggies with high water content, like pears and celery, are also great at keeping our mouth’s healthy. Protein is also excellent at getting rid of the acids in your mouth so pack turkey sandwiches, cheese & nuts to your heart’s content. There are so many tasty options to divert their attention away from the junk food, at least for a moment. They are still kids!

When you think about it, it all comes down to balance. You don’t want to deprive yourself and your family of the magical food delights only this season can offer. But you also don’t want to deal with a ton of dental bills in the autumn. So make sure you are trading some healthy options into your family’s summer snack wheel. You CAN have too much of a good thing, so take the time and read the labels. Make sure what you’re giving your child isn’t the world’s worst option. Moderation. And remember: Summertime is the hottest time of year so it’s easy to dehydrate. Sugars also deprive your body from its necessary hydration. The more you dehydrate, the easier things can go wrong internally. So keep those sugary treats to a minimum. Enjoy the summer!

If you would like more information on family oral health care tips, contact Dr. Ted Haines, DDS in Snohomish, WA at 360-568-8577 or visit www.tedhainesdds.com for additional information.

Dr. Ted Haines proudly accepts patients from Snohomish, Monroe, Lake Stevens, Everett, Mill Creek, Woodville, and surrounding areas.