Protecting Your Teeth From Cold

Teeth pain issues do crop up during the winters particularly in regions where the winter is extreme. Apparently cold weather does affect your teeth as they turn to be even more sensitive due to the sudden temperature variation.

A good smile is all about shining and healthy teeth and thus keeping your teeth in the pink of health is required to keep your confidence levels up too. Cold weather does effect your teeth and its quite uncomfortable to bear the discomfort, sharp or constant pain in the teeth. Well, to deal with this issue a better idea is to go an visit your dentist for a routine checkup. While there could be various reasons for teeth issues in winter some of them include, cracks in enamel, sensitive gums, brushing too hard, grinding or clenching teeth frequently and gingivitis to name a few.

Protecting Your Teeth From Cold

There are various home remedies that could also help you take care of your teeth during the winter season. It’s easy. Just ensure that you brush your teeth on a daily basis and even floss it without fail. If still problem persists try for a toothpaste for sensitive teeth with a potassium base. Its better to start the toothpaste even before the falls because this will give the toothpaste time to work on your teeth and make them ready to face the chills ahead effectively. Another toothpaste to help desensitizing your teeth is one that is calcium based. It encase tooth calcium thus providing instant relief by closing the pores that are open. Even the toothbrush you use matters. A tooth brush with soft bristles is advisable.

In the winter season we avoid drinking more water because we don’t feel thirsty frequently and also we want to avoid going to the washroom frequently. But, the fact is that you need to stay hydrated all the time by consuming 2 lts of water across the day to keep your teeth healthy like your body. More water means more saliva and less bacteria. Bacteria buildup is more when we consume foods that contain sugar so avoid sugar and acidic foods as this could lead to a rise in sensitivity.

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The Effect of Zinc Deficiency on Oral Health – A Sneak Peek

Many of us aren’t aware of the significance of Zinc on oral health. A trace mineral, zinc is apparently naturally found in our saliva and helps us fight bacteria as well as plaque that are responsible for cavities, tooth decay and gum disease.

ROLE OF ZINC

The role of zinc is similar to that of flourides. It helps in demineralization and remineralization of your teeth, further reducing cavities as well as tooth decay. It also protects your teeth against diseases like gingivitis, mild periodontal issues and other gum diseases.

Zinc and Gum bleeding

Another important property of zinc with respect to our oral health is that it aids in healing our oral wounds. There has been a lot of research that reveals the importance of having zinc in our diet because it helps in keeping periodontal health in place. It is zinc, that is your main defense against the plaque that forms around your teeth. Hence, is your body is deficient of zinc it automatically means that your oral health is at risk already. Your bleeding gums would not heal faster if your body is deprived of zinc because without zinc your body cannot transport the Vitamin A that your gums need in order to heal naturally.

And if that’s not enough here’s how zinc offers helps your body in many ways than one –

  1. Fights inflammation

  2. Improves immunity

  3. Improves Skin health

  4. Slows aging

  5. Enhances metabolism

  6. Fights viruses and cold

  7. Regulates blood flow

  8. Avoids blood clot

  9. Enhances fertility

  10. Improves skin health

Having said that, excess could also be a problem and could cause what is known as zinc toxicity. If your body has excess of zinc it could show symptoms like Epigastric pain, Lethargy, Fatigue and vomiting, etc. If you are deficient of zinc then its better to consult a physician before taking any dietary supplements so that you do not get it in excess.

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Headaches Could Be A Result Of An Underlying Dental Problem

None of us can think of visiting a dentist when having a prolonged or recurrent headaches, ain’t it? Obviously, because considering headache to be a result of teeth conditions is far from anyone’s thinking really. One reason is that it is extremely rare and there could be many more reasons for headaches and a dental problem is the least thought off. Here’s a case study where a 45 year old lady was having recurrent headache for a long period of time. She paid many visits to physicians, ENT specialists as well as Neurosurgeons and even underwent many diagnostic tests like EEF, MRI and CT Scans but with no success in diagnosis about the reason. She was then suggested by Neurosurgeons to go for an open surgery of 2 lacs cost. She was already distraught about not known the reason behind the suffering.

Amidst all this chaos her daughter found out through her on research and judgement that it could be a dental condition. She then visited one of the popular dental clinic chains in Bangalore and the doctors immediately diagnosed it as a dental condition. The headache was because the lady was having unevenly aligned teeth in a small jaw. As a result of improper placement and crowding, it was triggering headache.

The doctors then created a treatment plan of action for here which was short, simple and even painless to an extent. After the orthodontic treatment was done, not only did she get rid of her headache but also got her beautiful smile.

This only throws out one question, if only had she not heard to her daughters suggestion and went ahead with the open surgery, the results could have been unimaginable. Additionally, it could have cost her a bomb that too on a surgery that wasn’t needed at all.

Well, this also brings to light the fact around lack of awareness or ignorance of dental problems and issues in the country. Dental health is equally important and ignoring it is not a good idea, and awareness around it can always help.

*Sourced from Internet

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Sealants – An Overview

Cavities are one of the most common dental problems in India. While, the basic solution to this problem is brushing and flossing on a daily basis, still many a times you cannot reach every nook and corner. The molars that we use to chew are of uneven shape and rough and it’s possible that even after cleaning bacteria can still remain back. But, fret not, there is a solution to protect them too and it is known as sealants.

Sealants before and after

Sealants

Sealants are like protection shields for the teeth. There is a thin coating made from plastic or similar dental material and stick to the surface of your back teeth. These sealants are known to be highly effective and have an ability to reduce tooth decay by almost 80% in molars. Outside India and as per the reports of Center of Disease control (CDC) around 43% of the children who do not use sealants are at three times higher risk of getting cavities.

Like you wear raincoats to save yourself from rain, you wear sealants to save your teeth from decay, it is as simple as that. The bacteria responsible for cavities reside in the mouth and with the help of food particles that are left back produce acids that further lead to creation of holes inside the mouth, called cavities. Once the sealants are applied they protect the teeth from decay. The process of application is quite simple and pain free. The dentist cleans your teeth dry and applies an acidic gel on your teeth, in order to roughen up the surface. Once the sealant is applied on this surface it will form a strong bond with the sealant post application. After some time of application of the gel, the dentist rinses the tooth once again and then applies the sealant in the teeth grooves. The dentist makes use of the special blue light to harden the sealant.

Sealants can be used for children above 12 years of age and adults as well. They can be used in areas where decay has just begun so as to avoid further decay. Sealants are transparent in color and hence ensuring the sealant is doing its job is easy for the dentist.

*Sourced from Internet

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Dental Public Health In India – A Concern?

Oral health has been a cause of concern in India. The primary reason is the high level consumption of tobacco and next is unawareness about it particularly in rural areas. Excessive usage of tobacco and added to that lack of oral hygiene amongst Indians more so rural Indians has led to loss of lives due to oral cancers and other life threatening conditions. One example is that of a 42 year old Bareilly resident Mohsin Khan, an embroidery worker who started chewing tobacco on the behest of friends. Recently, he faced issues with concentration while doing embroidery after he returned from a Tobacco Cessation Cell in New Delhi, but it was too late for him as he had been diagnosed with leukoplakia viz. a pre-cancerous lesion. He also mentioned that he wasn’t aware that oral health was so vital and could cause life threatening conditions like Cancer. He also mentioned that he used to clean his teeth using Neem Sticks and Coal Ash.

Dental Public Health In India

As per government statistics over 70% of the school children have cavities and over 90% of the adult population in India does get affected by periodontal condition. Even National Oral Health Policy draft of 2018 does mention that oral diseases in India are rampant and repetitive as well making it a silent epidemic of sorts.

Oral issues within Indian children and adults in India include problems like cavities, periodontal conditions, oro-facial anomalies, temporo-mandibular joint disorders, loss of teeth, dental fluorosis, dental trauma as well as oral cancers as per Consultant Dentist of Columbia Asia Hospital.

Rural Areas it gets worse because there is lack of infrastructure there. Scarcity of dental health professionals in public hospitals is also and added issue. Well, this makes it difficult for the common man as he/ she have to shell out the expenses for oral treatment from their own pockets. As a result the common man opts out of treatment and goes for extraction, which is a cheaper way out.

Well, addictions like alcohol and tobacco do play a vital role in oral health. Additionally people in India ignore dental health issues big time. There has been proven research that managing dental health properly can help prevent many health conditions and even reduces the risk of diabetes, preterm labor and even heart attack as per Praveshh Gaur, Founder, Director of Srauta Wellness Center.

*Sourced from Internet

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Quackery In Dentistry

Quackery has been in practice in the dental ecosystem for a long time now. A simple reason behind the same being the demand is more than supply, viz. there is a scarcity of qualified dental professionals. The domino effect, gullible people falling to the dupes of quacks, who provide dental treatment apparently backfires.

In India particularly people residing in remote areas, are deprived of affordable oral healthcare services. Quackery, for those who aren’t aware of the term means ‘fraudulent misrepresentation of one’s ability and experience in the treatment and diagnosis of a disease or the effects of the treatment that is provided’.

Even the high court has mentioned a quack as ‘a person who does not have knowledge of a particular system of medicine but practices in that system is a quack and a mere pretender of medical knowledge or skill’.

Quackery

If we go by the statistics, approximately 3000 quacks are already practicing dentistry across India on an illegal basis. Well, there is this huge difference in the allocation of dentists in public and private sector. Again wherever there is some basic oral healthcare facility available the infrastructure is really poor with limited workforce and resources.

Malpractices that the quacks carry out in dentistry include life threatening risks like using the same needle on multiple patients, not using sterilized equipment, no usage of aspepsis while undertaking procedures, using self-curing acrylic for replace a missing teeth. Using an already extracted tooth for replacing a missing one. The aforementioned are just a few examples of unethical practices that people fall prey to due to paucity of oral healthcare professionals. In the name of providing instant and pain-free treatment these quacks fool the people who are not well informed around oral care and are in need of immediate solution to their problems. In contrast, the treatment they receive when they consult such quacks is not only painful but destructive too, at times causing irreversible damage.

This problem too has a solution and the solution lies in providing accessibility to dental services in remote areas alongside stringent polices against unethical practice. Alternatively, spreading awareness amongst people around dental quacks and furthermore training these quacks after absorbing them would certainly help curb these problems to a great extent.

*Sourced from the Internet

Frailty Among Indian Elderly. Is Poor Dental Health The Culprit?

For those who aren’t aware what frailty is all about, it means vulnerability towards dental health conditions or inability to perform daily routines due to declining health. One of the risk factors of frailty is poor oral health because it effects the abilities like smiling, eating and even speaking, ultimately the quality of life.

A study including 7735 British male participants and published in the American Geriatrics Society Journal does show that frailty and oral hygiene to go hand in hand.

The study started off when the participants were 40-59 years old in 1978 -1980. Then again in 2010-2012 the 1722 participants who were alive then were called for re-examination. At that time their age was 71-92 years. The participants were examined for their physical health, vital statistics as well as weight, walking and grip test as well. A questionnaire explaining their medical history as well as lifestyle was also needed to be answered besides information around social medical and health.

Additionally, there was a dental exam for noting the frailty status of the participants. The confirmation of frailty was done on the basis of three issues – weak grip, slow walking speed, weight loss, exhaustion or low physical activity levels.

Dental examination showed that around more than half viz. 64 percent had less than 21 teeth, over 54 percent were suffering from gum disease, 34 percent of the participants rated their oral health as poor or fair, 29 percent exhibited minimum two symptoms of dry mouth while almost 20 percent were having no teeth at all. 11 percent of the participants had difficulty eating food.

Well, considering this study, there seems to be a direction connection between frailty and oral health. As per an expert Dr. Carter, Chief Executive Oral health Foundation, in UK the people have good longevity but it comes at the cost of significant health problems for people over 65 years of age. Hence, brushing teeth effectively is necessary but due to dexterity and limited mobility, it makes it hard for the elders to do so. Hence, its advisable that elders give priority to their oral health and even the government takes measures in devising a effective oral health system particularly for the elder population.

*Sourced from the Internet

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Wisdom Teeth – All You Need To Know About The Third And The Last Molars

Known to be the last of the permanent teeth that erupt on side of the upper and lower jaws, the process of eruption can be a problem many a times because there is very little room left to accommodate these molars. As a result most of the times these teeth erupt either partially or in a crooked form. There is therefore a possibility of these teeth getting impacted is high further resulting into tenderness and swelling of the areas around them.

Wisdom Teeth

As per the American Dental Association it is better that teenagers of 16-19 years age evaluate their wisdom teeth for if there is a need to remove them. Once you visit your dentist, he/she will carry out the routine diagnosis for the same. If there’s a need for uprooting the molar, he/she will recommend the removal of the impacted teeth. This will include either the use of local or general anesthesia or IV sedation. In order to limit the bleeding caused due to the extraction the doctor will ask you to bite on a soft gauze piece for over 30 to 45 minutes.

The procedure is also a simple one, wherein the Surgeon puts an incision into the gums incase the impacted teeth is imbedded in the bone and will remove it in sections so that he is able to save as much bone as possible. The side effect includes a probable swelling that would go away within a few days. If the swelling, pain, fever or bleeding continuous consult the doctor on an immediate basis.

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One of the complications that could occur and is rare is dry socket. Normally, after the tooth extraction, a blood clot forms in the tooth socket and helps the area to heal. In rare cases dry socket occurs wherein the blood clot breaks down exposing the nerves as well as the bone of the tooth. It is a highly painful condition and needs medical attention on an immediate basis.

The dentist primarily rinses the affected area, removes debris around it if any and then dresses it up in order to reduce the pain and protect it from further damage. Additionally, he/she might prescribe painkillers to pain relief and prevent infection. The condition takes around 10 days to heal with proper medical care and rest.

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*Sourced from the Internet

Thumsucking And Pacifier – How It Affects The Teeth Of Infants And Children

A natural reflex in infants and growing toddlers, thumb sucking or pacifying themselves with objects is very common. The reason cited around the same is that the little ones feel happy and secure as well. Apparently, it helps them know the world better and many times it helps to soothe themselves and fall asleep.

Thumb sucking can be considered a problem for the teeth of the child only if the intensity is too high. Even pacifiers have the same effect on children as thumb sucking, based on the frequency of using them. Also, if kids only use the pacifier or thumb to rest it in the mouth, it does not have any harm but if they suck the thumb or pacifier too vigorously, it does affect your teeth for sure.

Thumsucking And Pacifier

The thumb sucking or using pacifiers continuous for upto four years of age generally. Children who suck their thumb aggressively do tend to affect the primary teeth and hence it’s important to take steps when you find that your child is into thumb-sucking or pacifying continuously. It is also known that once the permanent teeth are in place, thumb sucking or pacifying can cause To help your child give up the habit you may do your bit by doing the following –

  1. Make them feel comfortable and secure

  2. Explain your child, if he/she can understand about the disadvantages of thumb sucking / pacifying

  3. Try to use different methods for getting rid of the habit

  4. Whenever you find your child not sucking, appreciate it

  5. Even trying to put a bandage around the thumb is a good idea

If problems persist even after trying, then it is advisable to consult a dentist or pediatrician. They will help you with medication that tastes bitter or with some thumb coater.

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Thumb sucking or using pacifiers is a very common problem that infants and toddlers face in their early years. Nevertheless, it is not a problem that has no solution, so try working it out with kids at home through some tried and tested ways or else coordinate with your pediatrician or dentist and you’ll find a way out.

*Sourced from the Internet

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5 Dental Problems for People Above 50 Years of Age

Teeth problems are caused throughout the lifetime but after 50 its starts going southwards. Tooth issues are generally very painful issues and precaution for prevention is always a good idea. Also, 50 plus is an age when everything other than health is secondary. So, let us run through some of the tooth problems that commonly occur in the 50’s and care to be taken in order to avoid the same.

Dry Mouth
Dry mouth is often a result of medications. As people grow older, the number of medications also increase hence resulting into dry mouth problems. Sometimes it could occur due to an accidental blow to the head or smoking addictions due to damage to salivary glands. The symptoms of dry mouth include dry throat, issues swallowing, dry and cracked lips. It may also cause bad breadth and trouble with swallowing food.

Care – Sipping water throughout the day for stimulating saliva production is a good remedy for dry mouth. Alternatively, you may also sugar free xylitol chewing gum or candy. Over the counter formulations are also available and could on the advice and prescription of your Dentist.

Tooth Decay
While many of us may presume that cavities are only a problem of the sunny days, apparently we’re not aware enough. Cavities can occur even after 50 years. The roots of your teeth turn softer as well as are even more exposed once you cross the golden jubilee mark. So, they are more prone to tooth decay not only on the surface of the teeth but also affect the root and over old fillings.

Care – Flouride is a simple solution to the problem called cavities. Be it children or adults, is works alike for both and is known to be one of the top 10 dental health measures. In India people do not drink fluorinated water, like Americans do. Hence, it is advisable that you do a fluoride rinse after brushing daily. Alternatively, you may also ask your dentist to prescribe you some flouride prescription gel.

Gingivitis/ Gum Disease
Gingivitis is a first stage of gum disease and needs and needs early intervention or it can progress further into bone loss and eventually loss of teeth. The symptoms of gum disease include red and swollen gums that bleed easily.

Care – Follow your routine teeth care and visit your dentists regularly for oral check-up and cleaning.

Tooth Crowding
As per the X-president of American association of Orthodontists, our teeth shift as we age. This makes it difficult to clean the teeth increasing the risk of tooth decay. Additionally, it also increases the risk of periodontal disease that could lead to a loss of teeth.

Care – Meet your dentist to find out if your teeth have actually shifted. The dentist may suggest refitting them with a spacer, retainer or braces as well. It is advisable to do a regular visit to your dentist to check on the shifting part and even regular cleaning.

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Oral Cancer
Oral cancer is ranks in the top three cancers in India as per a research paper published in Journal of Cancer Epidemiology in 2012. As you age the risk of oral cancer only increases. The people who are addicted to smoking and drinking often are at a greater risk of the same. The discovery of Human Papilloma virus has also added to the cause of oral cancer.

Care – Mortality rate for those suffering from oral cancer is very low. If detected at an early stage then the survival rate is upto 5 years or so. Hence, it’s advisable to do a checkup for oral cancer regularly.

*Sourced from the Internet