Will Becoming Vegan Affect My Smile? | Snohomish Dentist

In this day and age, everyone is trying to keep their bodies in the best shape they can in order to last a little longer on the planet. And it is a great idea to be healthier, but it is important to know how a diet change will affect your body in the long run to make sure it is the right choice for you. Because November is  World Vegan Month, let’s take a look at how switching to a plant-based diet will affect your oral health.

The first thing one would think about having a plant-based diet is the loss of dairy – don’t we need calcium for strong bones and teeth? The answer is still yes, but you can get calcium into your system without dairy products. You can go the health store route and use supplements, but you can also get these important nutrients through nuts, fruits and vegetables. In order to get every bit of calcium you can, you also need fat-soluble vitamins A, D and K. Sound complicated? It’s not – and can also be handled by food.

Vitamin A. Vegans focus on beta-carotene to get their vitamin A. It can be found in supplements, but also in foods like carrots, pumpkin, sweet potato and squash.

Vitamin D. The best source of vitamin D is the good ol’ sun and soaking it in as much as possible is ideal, but if you are looking for a yummy substitute, choose the mushroom.

Vitamin K. Keeping our teeth bright and healthy is important and that is where the greens come into play. Get your salads out – it’s the kale, spinach and broccoli are the stars in this category.

If you would like more information about vegan dental tips, 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.

Why Do My Teeth Feel Sensitive After They’re Whitened? | Snohomish Dentist

rooth canalWhen you get your teeth whitened, do you ever notice your teeth feel sensitive? They look great but what about the whitening process makes our mouths feel this way? When we get our teeth whitened, we are polishing up enamel that has gotten a little dull. As our day-to-day lives cause tooth enamel to wear, teeth become increasingly prone to pain when drinking or eating certain foods. Receding gums can also play a major role in causing your teeth to become sensitive, causing the pain we feel.

I know what you’re thinking – but how do we make it stop? A study was published in the British Dental Journal stating 88 patients were broken into three groups prior to receiving a professional teeth whitening procedure: patients without chewing gum, patients with sugar-free gum, and patients with sugar-free gum that also included Recaldent, a product that helps strengthen tooth enamel by adding calcium & phosphate to its list of ingredients. After the procedure, those patients with gum were asked to begin chewing. Surprisingly enough, those that chewed on a piece of chewing gum had significantly less pain than the group that went without. Some think it’s because of the saliva production, other believe it’s because chewing gum is distracting enough to forget about the pain.

So, make sure to pick up a pack of sugar-free gum on the way to your next teeth whitening appointment. Not only will it help prevent cavities, tooth decay and bad breath, but it also helps relieve any sensitivity.

If you are seeking help to improve your saliva production, 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.

 

Now Offering ZOOM Whitening! | Snohomish Dentist

If there is anything we love, it is a bright white smile. In fact, we love it so much, 100 million Americans whiten their teeth in some form or fashion. And sure, there are lots of ways you can achieve these glistening grins – over-the-counter brands and good habits are the simplest, but what if there was a way to brighten our smiles in a single hour? It doesn’t get faster than that! We are proud to now introduce ZOOM! Whitening System into our office’s repertoire of services.

With ZOOM! Teeth Whitening System, whitening your teeth has now gotten both quicker and hassle-free. During your visit, our trained clinicians will place a protective barrier along your cheeks and gums. The Zoom whitening gel is then applied to the teeth. The secret lies in the one-two punch of gel used in correlation with the Zoom light, which gently penetrates the surface of the teeth to break up stains and discolorations. The gel is applied for three 15 minute sessions. This is the best part: during this time, you can relax, watch a DVD or listen to music while it’s all happening.

Once you have your magical smile back to new, the aftercare is straight-forward as well. No dark, red, spicy foods or drinks for at least 48 hours while the pellicle returns to protect your teeth from stains. After that, just continue to keep up with proper dental hygiene as you normally would. There are also take-home trays available to maintain your pearly whites in between visits.

To find out more about ZOOM! Teeth Whitening System, 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.

I Want Whiter Teeth: Which Way is Best? | Snohomish Dentist

489195623If you ask most people what they consider a great smile, chances are they will say bright white teeth. The problem is, it isn’t as easy as it seems. Our diets and lifestyle choices can hinder your teeth being their pearliest. You can brush & floss every day, but your teeth may not keep its natural sheen. You can make appointments with your dental professional to have teeth whitening sessions, but that can get pricey. So how do you keep your teeth white in between dental visits? There’s always over-the-counter versions (i.e. Crest white strips) you can buy to do it at home, but how good are the results? Is there a better, more natural version? How do you decide which is best for you? Here is a breakdown of some ways you can do at home:

Whitening products sold over the counter in the form of strips, trays, or paste work by using the oxidizing agents to remove pigment on the surface of the enamel. Hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide are commonly used in these products and contain 3 to 10 percent hydrogen-peroxide level, as opposed to the 15 to 38 percent level dentists can use. The products are effective at removing surface stains but should be used in moderation.

So what about natural ways? You would be surprised by some foods that can actually help whiten our teeth while keeping us healthy. Of course, you can always make your own hydrogen peroxide and baking soda paste. Known as an age old go-to product, this is the DIY way for you to replicate the manufactured products at home. But did you know that strawberries and bananas can produce similar results? Strawberries contain malic acid, and malic acid is fantastic at breaking down teeth stains. A couple berries and some baking soda is a great, and fruity, version of the peroxide version. Rubbing a banana peel over your teeth like a toothbrush will also shine up your smile. The minerals in a banana, like potassium, will absorb into your teeth and brighten it in a very healthy way.

Getting and keeping a bright smile may not be the easiest thing to do on a regular basis, but there are lots of ways to keep it up in between a thorough professional visit, so why not? Dr. Haines offers custom take home pre-filled bleaching trays with varying opalescence levels of 35%, 20% and 15%. Contact the office for more information.

If you would like more information regarding teeth whitening options, 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 Chewing Gum Helps Whitened Tooth Sensitivity | Snohomish Dentist

Taking chewing gumHave you ever noticed that our teeth seem to feel extra sensitive after we get our teeth whitened? Sure, they look great but at what cost? We know they do a great job, but what about the whitening process makes our mouths feel this way and how can we get it to stop? The remedy to this tooth sensitivity is as simple as popping a piece of chewing gum into your mouth.

Before getting into the evidence to support this theory, let’s take a quick look at what constitutes sensitive teeth. A tooth can become sensitive for a different reasons. When we get our teeth whitened, we are polishing up enamel that has gotten a little dull. As our day-to-day lives cause tooth enamel to wear, teeth become increasingly prone to pain when drinking or eating certain foods. Receding gums can also play a major role in causing your teeth to become sensitive and there are lots of reasons gums can recede. Dentin exposure can cause your teeth (and their roots) to no longer have all of the protection our gums and tooth enamel provide. It is this that causes the pain we feel.

Now that we know a little bit more about what could cause the sensitivity, let’s get back into what can help relieve it. A study was published in the British Dental Journal stating 88 patients were broken into three groups prior to receiving an in-office teeth whitening. The groups were as follows: patients without chewing gum, patients with sugar-free gum, and patients with sugar-free gum that also included Recaldent, a product that helps strengthen tooth enamel by adding calcium & phosphate to its list of ingredients. After the procedure, those patients with gum were asked to begin chewing. Surprisingly enough, those that chewed on a piece of chewing gum had significantly less pain than the group that went without.

But why? Why did the gum-chewing patients feel so much more relief than those that didn’t? Scientists aren’t exactly sure. They have theorized that perhaps the increased saliva production gave the patient some type of relief. Or perhaps, the act of chewing gum made the patient forget about the pain altogether. What they did find is that the version of chewing gum that helped to remineralize teeth did not make a difference in the experiment whatsoever. If the patient had gum, the patient felt some relief, despite its ingredients.

So make sure to pick up a pack of sugar-free gum on the way to your next teeth whitening appointment. Not only will it help prevent cavities, tooth decay and bad breath, but it will also help relieve any sensitivity the whitening procedure may cause.

How Custom Whitening Trays Can Help Improve Your Smile

teeth whitening trayIf you avoid smiling as often as you’d like because you’re afraid you’d be embarrassed by how yellow your teeth are, you’d be glad to know there are safe and simple options available to help you with your problem.

A common procedure used to whiten teeth is a bleaching procedure using custom whitening trays. The procedure is very effective and most important of all, costs significantly less than the typical cosmetic dental procedure.

Why Custom Trays?

Many over-the-counter whitening trays are available and you can use them without having to consult your dentist. However, they are not as effective, nor as safe, as the custom-fitted whitening trays made by dentists.

One risk that comes with the use of over-the-counter whitening trays is that the tooth-whitening gel may leak out of the trays. This can cause irritation to your gums. Also, the trays don’t fit specifically to your mouth, which means that it won’t be able to whiten your teeth as effectively as a custom-fitted one would.

What To Expect

Before the dentist can make your custom trays, your dentist will have to clean and treat your teeth of any existing dental problems. Once finished, the dentist can then proceed to creating your custom tray, or sometimes referred to as custom bleach splints or stents.

The process starts with your dentist taking an impression of your teeth, using the resulting mold to create the trays. This typically takes a couple of days, so you’ll be asked to come back again for a second visit after the dentist finishes taking the impression.

After finishing the custom tray, your dentist will then instruct you to wear the trays for up to four hours a day for a week, or two at most. You’ll also have to place small amounts of bleaching solution into the clear trays every now and then for optimal results.

During this time, you should notice your teeth start to whiten gradually and after completing the process, you should enjoy significantly whiter teeth than before. However, to maintain their look, you’ll need an occasional treatment every now and then.

As for side effects, the only problem commonly reported is minor tooth sensitivity throughout the process. However, the sensitivity usually disappears a few days after the whole whitening process is finished. If the sensitivity persists, patients are advised to go back to their dentists to check for the underlying cause.

Keeping Teeth Bright and Shiny

The best way to maintain the teeth’s brilliant and shiny look is to take proper care of it, which includes doing the following:

  • Brushing teeth twice a day for two minutes each session. If you want, you can ask your dentist for advice on the use of whitening toothpastes.
  • Flossing daily.
  • Avoiding stain-causing food and drinks, such as coffee, carrots, blueberries and so on.
  • Visiting the dentist for regular checkups and cleaning.
  • Abstaining from chewing or smoking tobacco.

If you’ve been wishing that your teeth were a little bit brighter and whiter, then it may be time for you to talk to your dentist about custom whitening trays to help give you that bright and shiny smile that you’ve always wanted.

If you are interested in custom whitening trays, contact Dr. Ted Haines, DDS in Snohomish, WA at 360-568-8577 or visit www.tedhainesdds.com for additional information regarding teeth whitening.

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

Enhancing your Smile with Teeth Whitening | Snohomish, Wa Dentist

177406608Patients looking to enhance their smile often ask dentists about cosmetic dentistry – procedures such as bonding can help correct gaps, braces can help correct alignment, and veneers can help adjust the size, shape, and color of teeth. While all of these procedures have their uses, one of the cheapest and easiest way to enhance a smile is simple tooth whitening.

There are a wide variety of options available for patients considering tooth whitening. Most use a similar active ingredient – typically hydrogen peroxide – as a bleaching agent to remove stains and provide a shiny white appearance. The nature of the product determines how strong the peroxide product can be – mild products can be used nearly every day, but the strongest whitening products must be used under dental supervision.

Here’s a quick guide to the type of whitening available today:

Whitening toothpaste is typically low risk, and contain a very mild whitening agent and a polishing agent to help remove stains from the surface of the teeth. They are typically capable of a few shades of whitening, but may take weeks or months to achieve a noticeable whitening change.
Whitening strips often use a peroxide gel to coat the teeth, and are typically worn for 30 minutes at a time, repeated several times for maximum impact. Strips will work faster and achieve more whitening than toothpaste, but are more time consuming for users.
Tray based whitening products are available either over the counter or by prescription from your local dentist. These products use a stronger peroxide product, and are typically used at home in longer durations than whitening strips (potentially 60 minutes, but some products may be worn overnight – check with the instructions for details). Because these often have a stronger peroxide gel, they tend to provide a better result than strips, but may be more expensive or require a dentist visit to obtain.
The most dramatic change will be obtained using in-office whitening procedures, where the dentist can protect the tissue around the teeth and use a much stronger bleaching product. Some of these products are light activated (a UV light or laser will be shone into the patient’s mouth to activate the whitening agent), others are chemical-activated (two gels that are mixed together to activate). The procedure generally takes about an hour, and the dentist will adjust the strength of the product and duration to match the level of staining present on the teeth and the whitening desired by the patient.

If you’re interested in enhancing your smile, talk to your dentist about whitening options. Whether you’re considering strips, trays, or in-office treatments, your dentist can help guide you into making an informed decision, and help set realistic expectations regarding the end result.

 

Call Dr. Ted Haines DDS for more information on whitening make an appointment today at 360-568-8577 or visit the website at tedhainesdds.com.

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

Teeth Whitening | Snohomish, Wa Cosmetic Dentist

479328903Most people are familiar with teeth whitening. Many brands of toothpaste claim to whiten teeth, and stores sell all varieties of tooth whitening products – trays, gels, strips, and rinses – over the counter.

The most basic form of teeth whitening is available as toothpaste – toothpaste, whether it’s labeled as whitening or not – typically contains small abrasive components that gently polish the surface of your teeth, removing discoloration caused by surface staining.

Other over the counter whitening products typically contain a bleaching agent – such as hydrogen peroxide – to lighten the color of your teeth by chemically bleaching them.  By applying the bleaching chemical to strips or trays, the peroxide can stay in contact with your teeth for 30 minutes at a time, often twice a day, providing quite a bit of whitening benefit.

Your dentist, however, can typically offer two different whitening options. The first is take-home tray based, using chemicals stronger than over-the-counter trays, but working on the same basic principle. Often times dentist provided trays are custom-molded to the patients teeth, providing a smooth, comfortable fit suitable for wearing for multiple hours each day – often even overnight.  Beyond the trays, dentists can often perform whitening in the office, using light and heat activated bleaching chemicals, providing a significant whitening in as little as 60 minutes. Because the procedure is supervised by a dentist, much stronger chemicals can be used, and much more dramatic results can be seen almost immediately.

No matter which method of teeth whitening you choose, the results will likely not be permanent. Your teeth are exposed to foods and drinks that will stain them over time, but your dentist can advise you on the proper procedure for repeating the whitening process at regular intervals.

Call Dr. Ted Haines DDS for an appointment today at 360-568-8577 or visit the website at tedhainesdds.com.

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