Chewing Gum: Can it Hurt or Help Your Teeth?

Whether chewing gum is beneficial or harmful to your teeth depends entirely upon the type of gum you chew. Gums that contain sugar can cause a significant amount of damage to your teeth. Bacteria feeds on sugar and emits fumes that damage your teeth. However, there are many benefits to regularly chewing sugar-free gum.

Produce Saliva

Chewing gum helps stimulate saliva production. This provides many benefits for your teeth. It helps neutralize and rinse acid from your mouth. Increased saliva production also rinses out food particles from your teeth.

Remineralize Teeth

Many gum makers have started adding a chemical called casein phosphopetide-amorphous calcium phosphate to their gum. This chemical has been shown to help remineralize and strengthen teeth. Remineralization helps repair damage to the enamel of the teeth.

Chewing gum can help your teeth significantly. It can help eliminate and neutralize acid, as well as remove excess food particles before they cause damage. Make sure that you only chew sugar-free gum. Gum with sugar can do much more damage than good, as the sugar will feed the bacteria.

There are many other ways to help protect your teeth. It is important to brush your teeth twice a day and floss once. It is also important to receive regular dental cleanings. To schedule your regular dental appointment, contact us at Hyde Park Dental today!

What is Oil Pulling?

Oil pulling is a method for taking care of your teeth. It involves swishing a tablespoon of oil in your mouth for about 20 minutes. Claims suggest that oil pulling helps to whiten and clean teeth, as well as remove particles and bacteria. Oil pulling most often uses coconut, sunflower, or sesame seed oil.

Does Oil Pulling Work?

Oil pulling reduces the amount of harmful bacteria in your mouth. It has been shown to have multiple health benefits for your mouth. However, this is often caused by the increased saliva production it produces. The same effect can be reproduced through swirling water or mouthwash for the same length of time.

How to Care for Your Teeth

The most effective way to care for your teeth is through practicing proper oral hygiene. It is necessary to brush your teeth twice a day to remove the plaque, bacteria, and food particles. You must also floss at least once every day. Another vital step is obtaining dental cleanings every 6 months.

Oil pulling is a dental health fad that fluctuates in popularity, but there is insufficient evidence that it has any benefits. The best way to keep your teeth healthy is through an adequate dental health routine. To schedule your regular dental cleaning, contact us at Hyde Park Dental today!

What is the Best Age for Braces?

Every child is different, which is why there is no specific age that is “best” for your child to get braces. This will depend entirely on the child, their teeth, and their rate of development. Straightening teeth is important because crooked teeth are more difficult to clean. Crooked, crowded, or otherwise misaligned teeth can lead to many oral health problems, like tooth decay.

Initial Evaluation

Most orthodontists recommend having your child’s teeth evaluated around the age of 7. This will allow them to determine whether the child is likely to need braces or not. It will also help them determine a general age that will be ideal to begin treatment.

The Right Age

Typically, braces are implemented between 10-14 years of age. It is extremely useful to straighten the teeth while the jaw is still growing, because the teeth will be able to be straightened more easily. A child must have all of their adult teeth before getting braces. Straightening a child’s baby teeth is ineffective, because the process will just have to be repeated when the adult teeth come in.

Another important milestone before obtaining braces is the child’s ability to be responsible for their oral hygiene routine. It is always important for them to take proper care of their teeth, but it is especially important when the child has braces. They will only be able to have braces once they are able to thoroughly and consistently brush and floss their teeth.

The best age for your child to obtain braces will depend entirely on the child. Ensure that your child takes good care of their teeth and take them to see a dentist for regular dental cleanings. Your dentist will likely be able to recommend the best age for your child to obtain braces. To schedule your child’s regular dental cleaning, contact us at Hyde Park Dental today!

How to Clean Teeth with Braces

Cleaning teeth with braces can be difficult, but it is very important. When you first get braces, you have to adjust to a new mouth position. You have to relearn how to talk and how to chew with the pressure on your teeth. There are a few ways that can help your teeth stay clean while you have braces. Failure to do so can cause dental problems while you have braces, which can make them more complicated to repair. It can also cause discoloration with your teeth, among other problems.

Rinse

Rinsing your mouth frequently can help you remove food particles from your teeth. Removing these particles can help prevent tooth decay and make it easier to remove the rest with brushing.

Brush

It is important to brush twice a day, even with braces. In fact, most dentists recommend that you brush after every meal if you have braces. You must hold the toothbrush at a 45° angle while brushing your teeth. Make sure that you brush above and below the wire, as well as between the wire and the teeth. Using a soft-bristled toothbrush will help you prevent damage from overbrushing.

Floss

It is also important to floss with braces. This is best done at night, to remove all of the food particles from the previous day. Flossing with braces is very similar to flossing regularly, but you must thread the floss under the wire. You can use a floss threader to help you accomplish this.

Dental Cleanings

Routine cleanings are always important, but they are especially important when you have braces. You should have a routine cleaning done every 6 months. This helps your dentist discover problems in the early stages, when they are much easier to fix.

Braces don’t mean that you can let your oral hygiene practices go. It is more important than ever to ensure that you are taking proper care of your teeth. To schedule your routine dental cleaning, contact us at Hyde Park Dental today!

How to Tell if you Have Bad Breath

Bad breath is the invisible enemy. No one wants to have bad breath and it can be difficult to determine if you currently have it. Your nose tends to ignore smells that originate from your oral pathways and people don’t want to be the bearer of bad news (or breath). Here are a few ways to tell if you have bad breath.

Lick Test

The lick test doesn’t require any external tools. To perform the lick test, you lick the inside of your wrist. Wait 5-10 seconds for the saliva to dry and sniff your wrist. If there is no odor, your breath is probably fine.

Swab Test

Use a swab or spoon to scrape bacteria from the back of the tongue. The bacteria may be clear, or it may be darker. The darker the bacteria, the more likely it is to be odorous. Smelling the bacteria is a good indication of the state of your breath.

Floss

Take a piece of floss and floss the teeth near the back of your mouth. Then sniff the floss. If it is emitting an odor, your breath might be following suit.

Ask Someone

The most effective way to tell if you have bad breath is to ask someone you’re close to. If you have a significant other, they are the ideal person to ask. Otherwise, ask someone you talk with frequently. If this is too embarrassing, watch people’s body language when they talk to you. If they lean back or turn their face away, you might have bad breath.

Solution

There are many causes of halitosis. The best way to protect your teeth is through brushing twice a day and flossing once. Keep track of what you eat and determine if that is related to your bad breath. Your dentist will be able to inform you of any underlying conditions that may be contributing to your halitosis.

To learn more about how to prevent bad breath, contact us at Hyde Park Dental today!

How to Get Rid of Canker Sores

Canker sores are painful occurrences and 20% of people are affected by them. They are sores in the mouth that can be caused through a variety of things, including injury to the mouth, genetics, stress, spicy foods, smoking, and more. There is no actual cure for canker sores, but there are many ways to help deal with the pain and speed up the healing process.

Speed Up the Healing Process

When you have canker sores, you should avoid hot and spicy foods. These will not only be painful, but they may also aggravate the sore. Avoiding sharp-edged food like chips and acidic foods or beverages can also help with the healing process. You should drink lots of water and ensure that you stay hydrated while you have a canker sore. Rinsing with salt water or a baking soda water solution can help speed up the process, as well as prevent infections. Common canker sores may indicate a zinc deficiency, so taking zinc supplements may help prevent them.

Pain Relief

Pain medications, like ibuprofen, can help reduce the pain caused by the canker sore. Applying a topical anesthetic can numb the area around the canker sore. It can also create a barrier around the canker sore to protect it from further damage. Drinking aloe vera juice can also help reduce the pain.

If you’ve ever had a canker sore, you know how painful they can be. If you’ve never had a canker sore, you’re extraordinarily lucky. Canker sores are not fun and it can be helpful to learn how to get rid of them quickly. If you have frequent canker sores, they may be caused by another issue. The best way to determine this is through consulting with your dentist. If you are concerned by canker sores, contact us at Hyde Park Dental today!

Why Do We Have Wisdom Teeth?

Many people will have to have their wisdom teeth removed at some point in their life. While the procedure is most often performed on younger patients, impacted wisdom teeth may have to be removed if they cause health complications later in life. So what function do wisdom teeth serve?

Why We Have Wisdom Teeth

Anthropologists theorize that evolution caused humans to develop wisdom teeth out of necessity.  The foods that used to compose past humans’ diets were much harder and ground down the teeth. This grinding made it necessary to have another set of teeth. The teeth had to perform many of the functions that silverware does today.

As humans began to cook their food, the food grew softer and wisdom teeth ultimately became unnecessary. Most people have them removed, because without the teeth grinding down, there isn’t enough room for the wisdom teeth.

Anthropologists believe that the lack in necessity has caused the decrease in people who have wisdom teeth. Though fewer and fewer people have wisdom teeth, the majority of people do.

Possible Health Complications

There are several possible oral health problems that can be caused by wisdom teeth. The wisdom teeth can cause crowding, which can result in crooked teeth. Many dentists recommend having your wisdom teeth before having significant orthodontic work done, to prevent having the work undone by the appearance of wisdom teeth.

Wisdom teeth require the same amount of care as all the other teeth. Otherwise, they can become painfully infected. Partially or fully impacted teeth can be even more difficult to maintain, because a portion of the tooth is still covered by the gums. Check with your dentist to see if you should have your wisdom teeth removed, even if they have not yet broken through the gums.

For more information about wisdom teeth, or to schedule a consultation, contact us at Hyde Park Dental today!

What You Need to Know About Dental Insurance

Dental procedures can get pricy, even if you have insurance. It’s important to know what your insurance plan covers and what you’ll be paying out of pocket. Decide if dental insurance is worth it for you, and do your research about the best plan for your situation.

Preventative Care

Most good dental insurance plans will cover all preventative care expenses. This is important because preventative care is the best way to prevent larger, more expensive problems in the future. Routine checkups are important to your overall oral health.

Annual Maximums

Dental insurance plans typically have a low annual maximum. This is the total amount that they will contribute to any dental work throughout the year. If a procedure exceeds this amount, you will be responsible for paying the difference.

Many insurance plans will also require a deductible. This is the amount you will have to pay before the insurance benefits kick in. Make sure you know what the deductible and annual maximum is for your insurance plan.

Discount Plans

Many dentists offer discount plans in place of traditional dental insurance. While these plans will not pay for your procedures, they will provide discounts on most services in exchange for a monthly fee. Many discount plans cover preventative care costs, typically including two cleanings a year. We offer a Smile Plus Discount Plan, which provides a discount on all services with the exception of orthodontics. Unlike typical insurance plans, our discount plan will give you discounts on cosmetic procedures, as well as general dentistry procedures.

Waiting for Benefits

Dental insurance plans usually require a waiting period before you are eligible for benefits. Though preventative care is usually available immediately, other procedures may require several months of coverage before they will be covered by an insurance plan.

The best way to avoid exorbitant dental costs is by obtaining regular preventative care. Regular checkups and dental cleanings will help reduce the risk of more serious oral health conditions later on. To schedule your routine dental cleaning, contact Hyde Park Dental today!

What Types of Dental Anesthesia Are Available?

Several dental procedures require dental anesthesia to numb the area prior to working on it. The dentist will need to use anesthesia in order to eliminate any pain you might feel when they are working on your mouth. Depending upon the way your body reacts, we may need to use different anesthesia in order to help you relax.

Here are some definitions of the different type of anesthesia we may use:

  • Local anesthesia. This is the most common type if anesthesia used by a dentist. It will numb the tooth and area that needs to be treated. They are used only for the numbing of the mouth in order to perform oral procedures from the filling of cavities to root canals and extractions.
  • Conscious sedation. This is used by placing a tube over your nose in which you will breathe in a mild sedative that will relax you. You will remain awake during the procedure but it is common to not remember the pain or much about the procedure.
  • General anesthesia. Typically dentists do not use this type of anesthesia as it requires the hiring of an anesthesialogolist in order to administer it. This will affect your entire body as you will fall asleep and will not remember the procedure at all. Individuals that have extractions commonly have general anesthesia as it will allow them to fall asleep and they will not remember anything.

At Hyde Park Dental, we are focused on providing our dental patients with the best treatment options. If you have dental anxiety, or you do have concerns about procedures, please let our team know. Our goal is to make sure you are relaxed and comfortable during dental treatments. We want to focus on giving you the right treatment methods to ensure you have a smile that you are proud to share with others for years to come!

Finding a Dentist Near Utah State University

Family Sitting On Sofa At Home TogetherWhat is one of the biggest reasons patients do not visit the dentist? LOCATION! While fear is right at the top of this list, we often find patients avoid going to the dentist because they are not located near their office. If you live in Cache Valley, you are in luck as Hyde Park Dental is conveniently located near Utah State University on 3125 N Main Street. Finding a good dentist you can trust with your oral health needs doesn’t have to be a hard task anymore! Here are five tips we always recommend when you are looking for a dentist, it just so happens, we meet all five requirements!

  1. Know your dental health benefits. this is a big deal! We know how expensive dental procedures can become, and we want to help you. Call our Logan dental office to discuss your current dental health plan. We can let you know what your copayment is, and what the average cost is for some of the larger procedures (like dental implants and crowns). If you do not have dental insurance, that’s okay! We do provide patient payment plans to make receiving the care you need affordable.
  2. Ask others for recommendations. What is the best way to find a dentist in Logan? Ask around! At Hyde Park Dental, we are proud of our reputation and we work extremely hard to maintain it. Ask around and you will find that we have one of the best dental teams in the area.
  3. Location. Do you prefer a dentist location near your workplace or your home? We are located right on main street in Logan, making it easy for you to come in on your lunch break, between college classes, or even on your way to Bear Lake!
  4. Scheduling. Give us a call to set up an appointment. We are here for your needs and can provide emergency dental treatments for our patients. We even set up a schedule to keep you on track with your oral health by creating future cleaning dates that meet your busy schedule.
  5. Evaluate the dentist after an appointment. We LOVE to hear from our patients. We encourage you to leave us a review and to tell our staff what you think we could improve upon. We always work hard to provide patients with a clean, organized office, and we have the best dental assistants in the area. Come visit our friendly team in Logan for your dental needs.

We love what we do and we love our patients. When you become a patient of Hyde Park Dental, you will be treated as family. Call our Logan dental office today for more information or to schedule your next appointment!