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Dental Health and A Happy Halloween

Dental Health and A Happy Halloween

For those of us with a predilection for sugar, Halloween is a truly magical time of year. Between fun decorations, scary movies, and costumes, it can be easy to absent-mindedly nibble on the endless candies and sweets that are floating about during this season, but beware! Some of the delicious snacks and treats that we consume are worse than others. So, rather than avoiding sugar altogether, read on to find out how to minimise the damage in your mouth whilst still enjoying your treats for a healthy and happy Halloween!


Feast on Sweets


Although it might sound contrary to logic, eating all your sugar in one sitting is actually the best thing for your teeth! Sugar sticks around in your mouth for a long time after consuming food and contributes to the formation of plaque and bacteria in your mouth, so limiting the time that your mouth is sugary is the best way to avoid having sugar in your mouth all day. Just make sure to regularly sip water to keep the sugar flushed out of your mouth as much as possible!


Wait Before Bed


Make sure to consume your chocolate and sweets with enough time to leave at least half an hour between sugary snacks and brushing your teeth! Sugar temporarily softens the enamel on the surface of your teeth, which means it is more susceptible to damage by brushing. To avoid causing abrasion to your teeth’s protective surface, eat your sugary snacks early and sip on water as you go to keep the sugar levels in your mouth low, and then brush and floss your teeth before bed as normal!


Choose Wisely


Although sugar is not overall not good for you, some sweets and chocolates are worse than others when it comes to your teeth. Sticky sweets such as caramel or taffy are not only full of sugar but also have the kind of consistency that gets stuck between your teeth and can stay there for a long time without melting. Not to mention that harder caramels can actually crack your teeth if you go fin for a bite! You’re better off choosing softer sweets or snacks that melt quickly, like chocolate, as you’ll reduce the amount of time that sugar sits on your teeth.


Steer Clear of Sour

And while we’re at it, it’s worth mentioning that sweets with sour flavouring are worse than regular sugary sweets because that delicious sour taste is made using acidic ingredients which cause havoc in your mouth! Limit your consumption of sour candy to make sure that your mouth isn’t saturated in sugars and acid.


To learn more about how to protect your teeth from sugar without cutting it out, check out our previous blog!

Nature v. Nurture: Are Bad Teeth Genetic?

Nature v. Nurture: Are Bad Teeth Genetic?

It is well known that genetics are responsible for the overall structure of your body, but do teeth and gum issues also come from inherited traits? Sometimes it can be difficult to know if oral health issues are caused by nature or nurture, which then can make it more challenging to find the right solution! Read on to learn about which oral and dental health traits are affected by hereditary genes, and how to look after your teeth and gums accordingly… 


Overcrowding


Overcrowding of teeth in the mouth or crooked teeth is  a hereditary trait and can make it harder to maintain good oral health as it is more difficult to reach certain areas in the mouth, which can allow plaque and cavities to form in the hidden spaces between your teeth. Overcrowding can also cause issues with misaligned bite, which can lead to further issues with jaw pain and chewing problems. However, orthodontic braces and retainers can help to realign your teeth and can even fix problems with overcrowding, so you don't have to be a victim to genetics forever!


Gum Disease


A predisposition to periodontal (gum) disease can also be passed down genetically and can cause a myriad of symptoms from toothache to bleeding gums. Luckily, gum disease can be treated and managed as long as it’s caught early! If you are aware of gum disease in your family, make sure you mention this to your dentist as they can take this into account when making an individual treatment plan for you.


Tooth Colour


The colour of your teeth is determined by a mix of genetic traits and your environment. Some people can have thinner enamel, which is genetically passed down and can be more susceptible to yellowing. However, the colour of your teeth can also be affected by certain foods and drinks, whether or not you smoke, and poor oral hygiene. Make sure you’re doing the best by your teeth by brushing and flossing regularly, and visiting your dentist twice yearly. If you are unhappy with the colour of your teeth even after giving them the best cleaning routine, you can look into whitening treatments applied either at home or in-office at your dentist. Nature might determine your tooth colour, but in this case you have options on how to change this to better suit you! 


In a nutshell: Yes, some oral health attributes are directly linked to genetics, but that doesn’t mean you have no control over your overall dental health and aesthetics! Don’t be discouraged by traits that have been passed down to you, remember that everyone is different and very few people get through life with no dental health issues. Rather than stressing about things you cannot control, seize control of those you can! Maintain your oral health to the best of your ability by brushing twice daily with a good quality toothbrush and flossing, and make sure to pay regular visits to your dentist!

Oral Health FAQ: Your Questions Answered

Oral Health FAQ: Your Questions Answered

Despite there being an amazingly huge amount of research and resources in regards to our oral health, there are some things which are often taken as a given, and it’s not always entirely clear how essential some things are for maintaining good oral health! We have gathered some frequently asked questions and answered them for you as a definitive reference - keep reading to answer your burning oral hygiene concerns for better dental health today!


  1. Everyone says I have to floss - but how essential is it really?

And when we say everyone, we mean everyone! Every blog, resource, and piece of advice regarding oral hygiene references flossing - so it must be important, right? The answer, unfortunately, is yes. While many of us find flossing uncomfortable or time consuming, it is very much essential for good oral health. Flossing helps to dislodge food particles stuck between our teeth and gums, and anyone who does it regularly can attest to how much stuff comes out of your teeth even after brushing! If you find it hard to find the patience, try putting on your favourite song and flossing to it - your concentration will shift to the music, and your teeth will be flossed before you know it!


  1. Should I bother with mouthwash?

The answer here is yes, and also no. Although mouthwash is a good addition to your oral hygiene routine, it is not essential, especially if you’re maintaining the most important parts: brushing and flossing. Dental health experts are split on whether or not they recommend mouthwash, so it’s really up to you! Just remember that if you are going to use mouthwash, you should opt for an alcohol-free formula, as alcohol can dry out your mouth and cause other problems down the line! Click here to learn more about mouthwash!


  1. Why do I need regular visits to the dentist?

The most common advice after flossing is twice yearly dentist visits - but why? Some people feel (or hope) that as long as there are no immediate concerns or problems, it’s not that necessary to visit the dentist regularly. However, we are here to tell you that regular visits to your dentist are an invaluable part of your oral health maintenance! Your dentist can spot (and treat!) problems in your mouth as they arise, and create personalised care plans to ensure that you’re doing the best for your teeth!


  1. What kind of toothbrush should I use?

This one is harder to answer as people have different needs, desires, and price points when it comes to choosing their toothbrush. There are some things, however, which are true for everyone: regular manual toothbrushes are usually the cheapest, but electric toothbrushes give you a better clean. If you’re interested in trying an electric toothbrush but find yourself wincing at the price, try out our Sonisk Pulse portable sonic toothbrush, which gives you that deep clean without breaking the bank!


For more information about different types of toothbrushes, check out our previous blog!
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