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Talk Therapy to Tackle Fear of the Dentist

teeth health smile dentist dentalphobiaTalk therapy can be used to help people who fear seeing the dentist. The approach is referred to as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT).

Key takeaways:

  • Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) helps people to acquire the necessary skills to face their fears, including fear of injections. It is a short-term treatment that involves from 6 and 10 sessions.
  • People with dental phobias have been found to avoid visiting the dentist and are likely to have cavities and other dental problems.
  • CBT is more effective in combating dental phobia than use of sedation since it has a long- lasting impact.

Although the training is long lasting, Milgrom said, fear can return and some may need more coaching later. The degree of fear may depend on whether the person is primarily afraid of the dentist or has other psychological problems, he said.

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Possible Side Effects of Tooth Whitening

teeth health smile dental diabetes teethwhiteningTooth whitening is not an entirely safe procedure. It is best carried out by dental professionals who will ensure all safety measures are in place.

Key takeaways:

  • Teeth staining or discoloration may be caused by the aging process, smoking, tartar, or by drinks and foods such as coffee and red wine.
  • Professional teeth bleaching at the dentist’s office is the most common form of teeth whitening. Laser whitening is a new, quicker, and more effective option.
  • Tooth whitening may have side effects such as tooth sensitivity, sore throat and pain along the gum line.

The effects of whitening are thought to last up to three years. However, this will vary from person to person. The effect is less likely to last as long if you smoke, or eat or drink products that can stain your teeth.

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Causes of Oral Cancer

teeth health smile dental diabetes mouthcancer oralcancerOral cancer screening during dental visits is important in ensuring early detections and early treatment. The dentist will look out for visible signs and palpate the jaws for any problems.

Key takeaways:

  • People who smoke and consume alcohol excessively are at the greatest risk of oral cancer.
  • The Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) has been found to cause cancer of the oropharyngeal region, the base of the tongue and the tonsils.
  • Regular dental visits for checkups will help to identify symptoms of oral cancer at an early stage and treatment commenced early enough.

According to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, the first thing you should do before beginning cancer treatment is to see your dentist. After your treatment begins, be sure to check your mouth every day for sores or other changes.

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Lesser Known Side Effects of Diabetes

teeth health smile dental diabetesIt is estimated that 8.3 percent of Americans who suffer from diabetes are also at greater risk for tooth loss. This is especially true for diabetes patients who are 50 years and older.

Key takeaways:

  • People suffering from both type 1 and type 2 diabetes had on average ten missing teeth upon oral examination.
  • Diabetics were also at high risk of edentulism which is the total loss of teeth. Diabetics have a 28 percent greater risk of being toothless.
  • High blood sugar levels were found to disrupt the delivery of nutrients and the removal of waste from gum tissue leading to periodontitis and eventually tooth loss.

While those who have poorly controlled diabetes are most likely to experience tooth decay, even well-managed diabetics are more likely to suffer from periodontal disease.

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Dental Issues Associated With Poor Control of Blood Glucose

smile health teethYour dentist may halt dental treatment and procedures upon learning of your diabetes. High blood sugar levels increase the risk of infection after dental surgery.

Key takeaways:

· High levels of blood glucose cause problems for the teeth and the oral cavity because it promotes growth of harmful bacteria.

· Uncontrolled blood sugar is therefore linked to a greater risk of gum disease.

· Serious periodontal disease on the other side has a high potential of causing the progression of diabetes.

Other dental complications related to uncontrolled diabetes include thrush, an oral fungus, and dry mouth, which can cause sores and ulcers. If you’ve been diagnosed with diabetes, the better you control your blood glucose, the lower your risk is for periodontitis.

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8 Ways to Relieve Tooth Sensitivity

teeth health smile dentalTooth sensitivity may develop due to sugary drinks and improper tooth brushing. One in every eight people suffers from tooth sensitivity.

Key takeaways:

· Brush your teeth gently using a soft-bristled toothbrush twice every day. You should use short strikes following the up and down movement.

· Rinse your mouth with fluoride mouthwash after brushing to protect teeth from cavities and tooth decay.

· Stay away from highly acidic foods and drinks such as citrus fruits and citrus fruit-based juices that cause enamel erosion, leading to sensitive teeth and tooth decay.

If you have severely sensitive teeth, you might want to consider an in-office dental treatment. Gel fluoride treatments (available in higher concentrations than you’d find in over-the-counter products), crowns, inlays, or bonding can all help cover sensitive areas on your teeth, the ADA says.
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