10/7/2015 4:19:00 PM |
As we age, our dental needs change. This is due not only to age itself, but to a slew of developments that have a great impact on the health of our teeth, gums and dental function. From introducing new medications, to the long-term consequences of lifestyle choices, our dental well-being often needs some extra attention as we get older. Here are five common dental problemsencountered by senior patients:
Having a dry mouth isn’t just uncomfortable and irritating, it’s actually a health concern that can have a huge impact on health. A common side effect when taking medication, dry mouth is caused by a lack of saliva flow. This lack of saliva means food remnants and bacteria are not washed away and take up residence in between teeth and under the gum line, and. acids that cause tooth decay are not naturalized as quickly. Without saliva flow, teeth absorb fewer protective, nurturing minerals like calcium and fluoride. Ultimately, dry mouth can lead to tooth decay and multiple cavities.
Darkening teeth is the change we see in dentin as we age. Dentin is the like tissue that lies underneath tooth enamel. Dentin can gradually darken due to life-long habits, such as tobacco use, stain-causing foods and drinks, and even dead teeth.
Gum disease is a highly prevalent condition experienced by a large percentage of the adult population. Caused by bacteria in plaque, gum disease inflames and irritates gums, resulting in swelling, bleeding, bad breath and more. Advanced gum disease can destroy bone and gums, and even cause teeth to become loose or fall out. It has been linked to many health conditions and diseases including heart disease, diabetes and stroke. To avoid gum disease, dentists recommend annual or bi-annual professional cleanings, depending on the patient’s dental needs and health.
Full dentures – a common restorative appliance for seniors – can block the palate, affecting the way we taste our food. As people age, taste buds tend to lose their strength, but when coupled with dentures, it can change the way seniors view eating, diminishing quality of life. Routine visits to a dentist will help to maintain oral health and can potentially stop or prolong the need for full dentures.
According to the American Cancer Society (www.cancer.org
) approximately 39,500 people will be diagnosed with oral cancer this year. Of those, an estimated 7,500 people will die from the disease. Oral cancer becomes more prevalent with age, which is why regular dental visits are vital for your health. With regular screenings cancerous regions can be detected and more successfully treated.
Maintaining oral health through at-home hygiene care and routine dental appointments will help to prevent many types of dental problems. Schedule an appointment with our Scottsdale dentist
, Dr. Marcia Blazer to receive the gentle care that you deserve to treat and prevent common dental problems that can arise from the natural aging process
9/28/2015 10:42:00 AM |
In a perfect world, dental accidents would only happen Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm. Unfortunately, there is a strong likelihood that you will find yourself facing a dental emergency at odd hours, while on vacation, or even during a holiday. While we cannot stop accidents from happening, there are tips and tricks you can use to minimize damage until you can see your dentist.
Five dental emergencies and how you should address them
1. What do I do if my tooth gets knocked out?
For adult teeth, be sure to keep the tooth moist at all times. You can keep the tooth moist by positioning it in between your cheek and gums, or by storing it in a glass of milk. There are also tooth preservation products on the market that can be used. Most importantly- get to your dentist as soon as possible. Delaying seeking dental care can reduce the likelihood of being able to save your tooth.
2. My teeth are fine, but my child knocked a baby tooth out! What should I do?
Children have a real knack for getting into mischief after hours. If your child knocks out a baby tooth, you should keep it moist and get it to a dentist immediately. Depending on how much of the tooth came out, your dentist can determine whether or not it can be safely replaced.
3. Ow! I have a serious toothache. What can I do?
To alleviate some of the pain caused by a toothache, try gently rinsing your mouth out with warm water. Once you’ve cleaned your mouth, you can try removing any foreign items with dental floss. If the pain persists, try taking an over-the-counter pain medication, and call your dentist for an appointment.
4. I broke my tooth, Help!
If your tooth breaks, it is important to immediately rinse your mouth with warm water to clean the area. Call your dentist to make an appointment. Your local drug store will sell a dental putty that you can place over the tooth to help relieve some of the sensitive and keep the area clean while waiting to see your dentist. Use a cold compress and pain reliever to help make your wait more comfortable.
5. I’m on vacation and my filling came out!
You can’t guarantee that a tooth problem will only occur during business hours or why you are local. If you are away from home and are suffering from a tooth emergency, contact your dentist to let them know your problem as they may offer some insightful tips. Most importantly, don’t ruin your time away with tooth discomfort. Contact a local dentist who offers emergency hours to non-patients. Schedule an appointment to follow-up with your dentist when you return home.
Remember: these tips are just suggestions for when you find yourself in a tight spot. Regardless of what your dental emergency
is, seeing your dentist as soon as possible can help save your tooth without risking compromising your oral health. If the emergency is serious, and your dentist’s office is closed, you can visit an emergency room.
Please be sure to call Scottsdale dentist, Dr. Marcia Blazer
, at 480-596-8273 to make an appointment
immediately after any of these events so she can continue what you started.
9/16/2015 9:07:00 AM |
Children who adopt good oral care habits are more likely to maintain them as they grow up, so it's important to emphasize oral health, even for very young children. Taking good care of primary (baby) teeth also helps to ensure that adult teeth grow in correctly. Here are five ways to protect your child's teeth, and ensure they grow up with healthy oral hygiene habits.
Monitor Their Brushing Habits
Regular brushing and flossing is essential for good oral health, so it's crucial to start these habits early, and monitor brushing and flossing so that it's being done effectively. Children can typically start to learn brushing at around 3 years of age, although they'll need help with flossing until the age of 9 or 10.
Teach Healthy Food Choices
The foods we eat play a big role in shaping our oral health. For example, a diet that's high in sugar encourages bacterial growth. Similarly, the failure to regularly include certain essential minerals in your child’s diet can affect the development of adult teeth. As a result, it is important to teach children about making healthy food choices, and about the connection between nutrition and their bodies.
Encourage Drinking Water
Encouraging your child to drink plenty of water is highly beneficial. In addition to being a healthy alternative to sugary soda and juices, drinking plenty of water can help ensure good hydration. This in turn ensures the mouth is able to produce saliva, which contains compounds that help to slow the growth of bacteria between meals.
Visit Your Dentist Twice a Year
Establishing a good at-home oral care and effective dental hygiene regimens are essential to keeping small smiles bright and healthy. Additionally, your child should be visiting the family dentist twice a year for routine cleanings and check-ups. These regular visits are incredibly important as they allow the dentist to look for changes that might indicate a dental problem. Professional cleanings also allow dentists to remove tartar build-up and keep your child’s teeth and gums in great shape.
Ask Your Dentist about Protective Treatments
Primary teeth are more susceptible to decay than adult teeth are. As a result, it is important to provide children’s teeth with extra protection. Your dentist can help promote healthy smiles by providing fluoride treatments and sealants that reduce the risk of cavities.
Your Dentist is here to Help
To help keep small smiles healthy, Dr. Marcia Blazer provides a range of preventive dental procedures tailored to children. Contact our Scottsdale dental office to schedule your next appointment today.
8/18/2015 8:23:00 AM |
If you’ve made the decision to get dentures, it’s important to make sure that you’re picking the option that makes the most sense for you and your lifestyle. Thanks to modern dentistry, there are many options to choose from today. One popular option is dental implant supported dentures. Your Scottsdale Implant Dentist, Dr. Marcia Blazer, DDS, has more than 20 years of experience in denture work and can help you make an informed decision. Dental implant supported dentures differ from traditional dentures in that they are supported by two or more implants. This takes much of the pressure off of the gums, making them much more comfortable. Additionally, since the parts in the denture snap in place to the implants in the jaw, the denture will be much more retentive than traditional dentures. Existing dentures may even be able to be retrofitted to attach to new implants in the jaw. If there is enough bone in the jaw to support implants, they can be placed as easily as having a tooth removed. Implants are more commonly placed in the lower jaw, since lower dentures tend to be less retentive than upper dentures. While your denture options in Scottsdale may be many, implant supported dentures should be at the top of your list due to their effectiveness, natural appearance, and reconstructive abilities. There are many benefits associated with dental implant supported dentures. Aesthetically, this type of denture looks natural, and patients report increased self-esteem and confidence from showing off their new, glowing smile. In addition to an improved smile, dental implant supported dentures can improve facial structure, replacing lost tissue and restoring balance to your face, making you look years younger. Better yet, you will experience no speech impairments or diet limitations with your dental implant supported dentures- you can eat what you want and happily, and clearly, tell everyone about it. In addition, this type of denture is easy to maintain, as the parts that attach the denture to your jaw are easily replaceable as needed. And you’ll live pain-free as the implants stop denture movement and protect your soft, sensitive gum tissue.
7/9/2015 1:34:00 PM |
One study showed that electric toothbrushes which rotate in one direction and then the other (called rotational oscillation toothbrushes) were more effective than other electric or manual toothbrush types. But that study was for the dental research geeks like me!
A manual toothbrush can do just as well as an electric one. You can simulate the movement of an electric toothbrush by brushing in small circles with the bristles aimed towards the gum tissue. However, since an electric toothbrush oscillates more quickly, you need to brush longer with a regular toothbrush to get the same effect.
The bottom line is whatever you prefer to use, electric or manual, it matters less what you use and more that you use it regularly and properly. ;For more information on proper brushing tips, click here.
And if you're ready to make an appointment, please call us at 480-596-8273 today!
6/18/2015 2:30:00 PM |
Dr. Blazer’s Advice to Parents for trips to the dentist
I am a family dentist, and I treat a lot of children in my practice. Unlike most pediatric dentists, who typically won’t allow a parent to accompany the child into the treatment area, I encourage parents to come back with their child. I want parents to see the steps we take (which, by the way, we use for adults too) to make the dental appointment stress and pain free.
Unfortunately, I’m confronted daily with well-meaning parents who unknowingly do all the wrong things to prepare their child for a dental visit. With that in mind, I would like to give some suggestions on how to prepare your child for a dental visit. Rule #1: Do not discuss with your child what you think they will experience at the dental visit.
Your prejudices will show through no matter how much you try to hide it. Let us do it, we will do it better!
Rule #2: Schedule your appointment for a time when you think your child will have the most patience and give them a healthy snack before the appointment.
You know your own child. Hungry and tired children are less cooperative for mom and dad, why would you expect them to be better for me? I have a fridge with healthy drinks and snacks in my waiting room and patients are welcome to help themselves when they arrive.
Rule #3: If you think you are not going to be able to handle seeing your child have dental treatment done, don’t come back into the treatment area.
We will take good care of him and come out to update you periodically during the procedure. I have had to quickly pull a child out of the dental chair to get his dad to lie down before he passed out from watching me remove a tooth on his son! By the way, his son was most upset about me interrupting the movie he was watching!
Rule #4: Never talk about your negative dental visits you may have experienced in the past, especially during your child’s dental visit!
Dentistry has changed a lot since you were a kid. Don’t pass your prejudices onto your child!
Rule #5: Never use “going to the dentist” as a threat.
Believe it or not, I’ve had parents tell their children to behave or they were going to make me give him a shot! I’ve had parents tell the child if they don’t brush their teeth, the dentist was going to hurt them. How am I to gain your child’s trust if he hears comments like that from you?
Finally, I would tell you to take the time to talk to your dentist about your own fears. Perhaps watching your child have a positive dental experience might just convince you to get back in the dental chair! Checkout my Google Plus reviews from patients, many of them initially fearful and now appreciative of the care they’ve received.
6/5/2015 8:01:00 AM |
Top 10 reasons to go the dentist:
|Visit your Scottsdale Dentist, Dr. Marcia Blazer|
1 -It’s the perfect place to count ceiling tiles.
2 -You get a free toothbrush and floss in a goodie bag!
3 -It’s important for the teeth to be flossed twice a year, whether they need it or not.
4 -You get an excuse to sit and read fun magazines like People or watch a movie in the middle of the day.
5 -You get to be “in the spotlight” for about an hour!
6 -You get to miss work or school and everyone is sympathetic when you come back numb!
7 -You have an excuse to talk funny!
8 -You get to stick out your tongue and not be considered rude!
9 -Drooling is perfectly acceptable and a sign of good health.
10 -You get to try to respond to questions with your mouth open.
4/29/2015 10:37:00 AM |
Many of my patients have insurance through their employer, but few really understand the workings of their plan. Oftentimes, the insurance card comes with a booklet, pages long, with small print, explaining the plan benefits. While the booklet is guaranteed to be less complicated than the booklet that came with your cell phone, it still can be intimidating.
I've attached a link to a website that I researched that had a good general discussion about dental insurance. My office accepts all insurance plans. Additionally, my office staff is wonderful about helping patients get the most out of their dental insurance benefits; they are more than happy to answer any questions you may have. If you are thinking you may want to become a patient in my office, be sure that your insurance allows you to go to any dental office, rather than restricting you to a limited list of providers.
Most plans renew every calendar year, with maximums that, if not used, go away. For patients with unmet dental needs, that’s leaving money on the table!
3/23/2015 5:13:00 PM |
We're excited to announce the official launch of our Dr. Blazer blog. We'll be posting helpful dental tips, news from the dental industry, news from our practice, and more about the latest in dentistry. We built our practice on the notion that we're there for our patients when they need us and we want our online presence to be a reflection of that principle. We hope this blog provides an extra level of service to our current and future patients. If you would like to stay up to date on the latest from Dr. Blazer, simply click the RSS “Subscribe to feed” link located on our website and subscribe. Our subscribers will be updated when we make a new blog post. Here's to your best oral health ever!