Fluoride Treatments for Adults: Who Can Benefit?

Atlanta GA Dentist Office in BuckheadWhile you may be familiar with fluoride as it relates to children’s dentistry, you should know that the importance of fluoride for your smile spans all ages. Fluoride is a key mineral in keeping your teeth strong and healthy, as it targets the outer enamel layer of your teeth. This layer is what protects your teeth from pain, infection and decay.

Fluoride is known for its ability to naturally make your teeth more resistant to cavities. This earth mineral acts as a shield to ward off harmful bacteria from penetrating and harming your teeth. In pediatric dentistry, fluoride treatments are common practice. Statistics show that young patients that receive fluoride treatments are 40% less likely to get cavities! But what about adults? Can they benefit from fluoride in the same way?

Ideal Adult Candidates for Fluoride Treatments

Patients of all ages and walks of life can benefit from fluoride. However, there are certain groups of adults who are ideal candidates for getting fluoride treatments or supplements from their dentist. If you have one of the following that makes you especially prone to cavities, fluoride treatment can help protect your smile:

  • Dry Mouth
  • Crowns and Bridges
  • Braces
  • Gum Disease
  • History of cavities

There’s no shame in admitting that your smile needs some extra help to stay healthy. Fluoride treatments are an easy, affordable and painless way to protect your teeth. Many of the above-listed conditions are out of your control. For example, you may need a certain medication that gives you dry mouth or you may have metal braces that make it harder to keep your teeth clean. Fluoride treatment can help bridge the gap.

Fluoride can be applied to your teeth in a quick in-office procedure that requires no anesthetic. However, adults may also elect fluoride supplements. Finally, you can increase your fluoride consumption by drinking more tap water instead of bottled water. Most importantly, make sure you are using a fluoride toothpaste when brushing your teeth every day.

For additional help on finding a fluoride source to benefit your dental health, please let us know. At Pure Dental Health, we recognize the importance of fluoride and proudly offer fluoride treatments for children, teens and adults!

Posted on behalf of Dr. Justin Scott
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Pure Dental Health  Atlanta Dentist
2285 Peachtree Rd NE, Suite 203
Atlanta, GA 30309
Phone: (678) 666-3642

Seal Out Decay Today!

Atlanta GA Dentist That Offers SealantsYour teeth are a very important feature of your body. Of course, the teeth are regularly taken for granted, and they do much more than most people give them credit for. The teeth help you chew your food, they help you speak and enunciate your words properly, they offer a smile to others, support one another, support your jaw bone and your entire facial structure to give you a pleasant appearance. Protecting your teeth from cavities is a much more important mission that simply keeping a tooth healthy. If one tooth is unhealthy, the neighboring teeth are vulnerable; and the teeth adjacent to them become vulnerable until the entire mouth is put at risk. Protecting your smile is a much bigger job than most people realize.

Flossing the teeth daily and brushing the teeth at least twice a day are essential at-home dental care. Regular dental visits are also vital because they provide your dentist the opportunity to thoroughly clean your teeth and examine your entire mouth for any issues. Yet, there is another opportunity for provide your smile with a layer of protection to seal out harm. Dental sealants are an effective preventive measure that are used to protect the teeth from cavities and decay. Patients of all ages can benefit from this simple procedure because dental sealants do as their name implies: they “seal out” harm from the teeth.

Every time you eat, sugars, bacteria, and acids are left behind inside your mouth. The back teeth (the pre-molars and molars) have very rough surfaces for chewing and breaking down the foods that you eat. It is in these rough surfaces, consisting of deep grooves and pits, that food particles become trapped. Floss is not designed to clean these areas, and toothbrushes often cannot reach down into the deepest grooves to clean them effectively. Once sugars, bacteria, and acids become trapped in these pits, they begin to eat away at the tooth enamel, creating cavities and dental decay. To prevent this deterioration of the back teeth, dental sealants can be applied to provide a barrier against harmful substances entering the molars and pre-molars.

Dental sealants are plastic coatings that are applied to the back teeth in order to create a protective layer on top of the pre-molars and molars. These sealants seep down into the grooves and pits, and then the sealants are filled almost to the tops of the back teeth. Once the sealant materials are put in place, they are hardened with a special curing light that bonds the materials to the teeth. The procedure itself takes approximately 2-3 minutes per tooth, and there is absolutely no pain associated with dental sealant application.

Dental sealants are touted for their ability to offer protection to the back teeth that nothing else can. Dentists have widely offered dental sealants to children once their molars erupt inside their mouth. However, dental sealants offer the same protection to adults as they do to children. Adults who are cavity-prone, who have deeper grooves and pits in their molars, or who are simply concerned with their oral health and want to do whatever they can to protect their teeth are all great candidates for dental sealants.

As long as dental sealants remain in place, they offer protection against decay by simply not allowing harmful substances to enter the deep fissures of the back teeth. Dental sealants also provide an easy surface on the pre-molars and molars for brushing. Your dentist will examine the sealants at every appointment to ensure that they are still properly adhered to the teeth. Re-application is necessary approximately every 2-4 years for those who choose to utilize the protection that dental sealants offer.

Dental sealants are truly a simple, yet very effective, means of preventative dentistry. The cost associated with dental sealants is minimal to the costs of dental repair and restoration associated with decay, damage, and tooth loss. At Pure Dental Health, we are proud to offer this preventative measure to patients of all ages who wish to protect their smile. Contact us today to learn more about this simple procedure and how it can benefit you and your entire family.

Posted on behalf of Dr. Justin Scott
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Pure Dental Health  Atlanta Dentist
2285 Peachtree Rd NE, Suite 203
Atlanta, GA 30309
Phone: (678) 666-3642

Oral Cancer: Your Dentist Can Save Your Life

Atlanta GA Dentist Office in BuckheadApproximately 50,000 people will be diagnosed with oral cancer by 2017’s end. Oral cancer has a very high death rate of 43% at five years from diagnosis, making it an incredibly dangerous form of cancer. One of the scariest causes of the high death rate of oral cancer is that many people with the disease do not realize that they have signs or symptoms of oral cancer until it is the later stages.

As with all diseases and forms of cancer, knowing the signs and symptoms of oral cancer can save your life. Oral cancer screenings help dentists detect oral cancer as early as possible in order to catch the disease before it is too late. Early detection of oral cancer expedites early and aggressive treatment and can lead to better endings and survival rates. At Pure Dental Health, Dr. Scott leads our practice with excellence in dentistry services, including oral cancer screening. Dr. Scott understands how aggressive this disease can be, and he has the experience and ability to spot the earliest warning signs of oral cancer. Continue reading “Oral Cancer: Your Dentist Can Save Your Life”

Acid Erosion

Atlanta GA General DentistAcid: noun

A chemical substance that neutralizes alkalis, dissolves some metals, and turns litmus red; typically, a corrosive or sour-tasting liquid.

If acids can eat through metal, imagine what they can do to your teeth.

Despite how many people treat their teeth, the teeth are not invincible. Yes, they are made up of the hardest substance in the human body, but teeth can still crack, break, and are vulnerable to decay. What you choose to put into your mouth on a regular basis has a direct impact on your teeth: it will either benefit your teeth or put them in harm’s way.
Continue reading “Acid Erosion”

When Should a Sudden Issue Cause You to See an Emergency Dentist?

Atlanta GA Dental EmergenciesEvery person across the globe only receives one set of permanent teeth during his or her lifetime. These teeth are meant to remain inside the mouth to provide a complete, functional, and beautiful smile, and they are expected to last for years and years. However, in order for these teeth to last decade after decade, taking proper care of the teeth is essential. While daily flossing, brushing at least twice a day, avoiding bad habits, and protecting the teeth are vital components of oral health, being able to know when a sudden issue should cause you to see an emergency dentist is also vitally important.

As with all types of emergencies, taking the appropriate steps within an appropriate time frame when a dental emergency occurs can make the difference between saving a tooth and losing a tooth. The most traumatic dental experiences typically revolve around the loss of a permanent tooth or a permanent tooth that has been knocked out of alignment. Permanent teeth are not naturally replaced, so knowing how to respond to this type of dental emergency is essential in protecting your smile. If a tooth has been knocked out of alignment but it still hanging on by its roots, you have a good opportunity to save it. Try to gently push it back into its proper position. Do not use force, as you do not want to snap any of the roots that are keeping the tooth alive. Once the tooth is closer to its natural position, bite down gently to keep it in position and then seek immediate dental care. The success rate for saving a tooth that is still attached to its root is high, but it requires dental intervention quickly.

A tooth that has been completely knocked out of the mouth is one of the scariest and traumatic dental emergencies. Do not panic! First things first, find your tooth. The only way that a knocked out tooth can be placed back in the mouth is if you have it. Once you find the tooth, hold it by its crown (the top of the enamel) not the root. If necessary, rinse any dirt or debris off the tooth – but do NOT scrub it. You do not want to damage any of the root ends that are still alive inside the tooth. Try very carefully to place the tooth back into its socket. The roots within the gum are still alive, and there is a possibility that they will begin to reattach themselves to the roots within the tooth – but this must occur very quickly after being knocked out. If your mouth is in too much pain to place the tooth back into its socket, keep it moist in a small amount of milk. You must seek dental intervention immediately from a dentist for the highest chance of successful treatment. Remember, remain calm, think fast, act quickly, and get to the dentist’s office.

Other dental emergencies are often not quite as traumatic as damage to or loss of a permanent tooth. A chipped or broken tooth is quite common, and while you should arrange to see your dentist as soon as possible, it is typically not a life or death situation for your tooth. If you have the chipped or broken pieces of the tooth, they should be placed in a cool cloth that has been dipped in milk. This cloth should be kept in the refrigerator so that the milk does not spoil, and should be taken with you when you go to the dentist.

A cracked tooth is another emergency that often does not require immediate attention, but should be addressed sooner rather than later. A cracked tooth that is causing you severe pain should, of course, be brought to your dentist’s immediate attention in order to alleviate your pain and prevent further damage. Cracks in the teeth are considered emergencies because they leave the teeth vulnerable to infection and more damage. If you have a cracked tooth, it is wise to have it addressed by your dentist within a few days’ time.

Any type of toothache, abscess, or significant swelling of the gums or mouth should be seen by your dentist straightaway. A toothache is often the first symptom that a more serious issue is present. Intervention from your dentist at the onset of a toothache can often prevent the serious issue from becoming a problem. An abscess or severe swelling inside the mouth is also an indication that a serious infection is present within your mouth. Oral infections must be treated promptly to prevent them from spreading into the blood stream and posing serious health issues to the rest of the body.

Sudden issues that arise within your mouth require you to make a choice: have the issues addressed immediately or ignore them. If you care about your smile and want to keep it healthy and complete, it is vital that you seek emergency dental intervention for dental emergencies. Acting quickly can make the difference between saving your tooth or losing your tooth. Saving a tooth will also save you a significant amount of money and time.

At Pure Dental Health, we go out of our way to help patients who have suffered a dental emergency. Your comfort is our priority, and restoring your mouth to excellent condition is at the center of all that we do. Our practice is open Monday through Friday from 7am to 7pm, and we allow time in our schedule to dedicate towards emergencies that may arise. Call us now if you are suffering from dental trauma or pain!

Posted on behalf of Dr. Justin Scott
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Pure Dental HealthAtlanta Dentist
2285 Peachtree Rd NE, Suite 203
Atlanta, GA 30309
Phone: (678) 666-3642

Your Diet and Your Oral Health

Your diet affects every aspect of your health, yet many people overlook this fact. A greasy diet will affect your skin, a high-fat diet will affect your weight, and a high-sugar diet will affect your teeth. Almost every aspect of your body’s health begins with choices that you make surrounding your mouth. Smoking, food choices, and beverage choices all involve what is allowed to enter into the body via the mouth. Yet, many people neglect this simple fact because they brush their teeth daily and floss occasionally.

The body is an extremely intricate machine in which all parts work together. If one part of the body is unhealthy, the entire body will suffer. If you have ever broken or injured a toe, then you understand how this can be. A broken toe can put you off your feet for at least a week, yet it can make exercising uncomfortable for upwards of a month. A single toe injury can be painful and cause you to gain weight, lose muscle tone, and affect your entire health. Now, think of what an unhealthy diet can do to your mouth – and your entire body – when you consistently make unwise food choices.

Inside the mouth are millions of bacteria that thrive off of the food particles that are left behind after you eat and drink. These bacteria help to break down these food particles by producing acids inside the mouth that make their job easier. It is these acids that cause tooth decay and gum disease. The oral bacteria are most attracted to the sugars in the foods and beverages that you consume. They congregate at sugary particles in large numbers and produce a great deal of acid. It is important to note that artificial sweeteners taste the same to bacteria as real sugar does, so choosing a Diet Coke over a Regular Coke does not protect the teeth in any way.

Maintaining a healthy diet consists of the following:

  • Fresh fruits and vegetables in their natural states (hence not baked in desserts)
  • Lean sources of protein
  • Whole grains
  • Dry beans
  • Legumes
  • Low-fat dairy products

A healthy diet does more than keep the numbers on the scale low, it protects the mouth from decay – which in turn protects the body from poor health. At Pure Dental Health we will be happy to help you find a diet plan that meets your needs and protects your oral health. Call us today.
Posted on behalf of Dr. Justin Scott
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Pure Dental HealthAtlanta Dentist
2285 Peachtree Rd NE, Suite 203
Atlanta, GA 30309
Phone: (678) 666-3642

Is Mouthwash Necessary?

When you think of your at-home oral health care routine, you may believe that brushing your teeth twice a day is good enough. Yet, when you stroll through the dental health aisle at the drug store you are reminded that you should be flossing – and what about mouthwash? There are many varieties out there claiming to benefit your oral health, so is mouthwash a necessary part of your oral hygiene routine?

Mouthwash is not necessary for those who brush their teeth at least twice a day and who floss every single day. Flossing your teeth is the best thing that you can do for your oral health because it removes food particles that are trapped between your teeth and bacteria-laden plaque that develops in the tight spaces between the teeth and at the gum line. Brushing the teeth loosens the plaque that builds up on the surface of the teeth so that it is expelled from the mouth when you rinse and spit.

However, if you are not an avid flosser and you occasionally skip out on brushing your teeth, mouthwash can be a beneficial tool for your mouth. When choosing a mouthwash, it is important to choose one with the American Dental Association’s (ADA’s) seal of approval. This seal lets you know that the mouthwash has been proven effective for fighting cavities and preventing gum disease. Both cavities and gum disease are caused by the bacteria within dental plaque and the acids that these bacteria produce. An antibacterial mouthwash will help to kill the bacteria inside the mouth so that it does not do damage to the teeth and gums. No mouthwash will remove plaque from the teeth, only flossing and brushing can do that, but it will help to lessen the damage that plaque can cause on the teeth.

While mouthwash is not considered a necessary part of your oral health routine, it can provide benefits to those who do not clean their mouths as they should. If you would like our recommendation for a good mouthwash, contact Pure Dental Health today. We want to promote the best choices for protecting your smile.
Posted on behalf of Dr. Justin Scott
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Pure Dental HealthAtlanta Dentist
2285 Peachtree Rd NE, Suite 203
Atlanta, GA 30309
Phone: (678) 666-3642

What is a Dead Tooth?

Many people are surprised that they can have a dead tooth within their mouth because they often do not understand how their teeth are alive in the first place. Teeth are made up of three different layers – the pulp, the dentin, and the enamel. While the enamel is the white layer that is revealed to the world with a friendly smile, the dentin and pulp are what the teeth need to sustain life. Decay, serious gum disease, and trauma to the mouth can all cause a dead tooth.

When you have a cavity in a tooth, it is a result of acid producing bacteria eating a small hole in your tooth enamel. Most people have this issue easily corrected with a dental filling, and no other damage to the tooth occurs. However, if you choose to ignore a cavity it can quickly fester and develop into a very serious dental issue. When the acid producing bacteria are not removed from a cavity, it will continue to eat its way to the inner layers of the tooth. This will cause irreversible damage, not to mention extreme sensitivity and dental pain. If the infection is allowed to reach the pulp of the tooth, it can destroy the blood vessels, cutting the tooth off from its life supply. A dead tooth is simply a tooth that no longer receives a constant supply of blood, and as with all other living tissues, it will die almost immediately.

A dead tooth is also commonly caused by dental injury or trauma to the mouth. One of the most dreaded accidents involves a tooth that has been knocked out. When a permanent tooth is knocked from its socket, it is immediately severed from the nerve fibers and blood vessels keeping it alive. There are instances when a knocked out tooth can be placed inside the mouth and it will connect back to the broken blood vessels, but this requires immediate dental intervention. If you or a loved one have a tooth knocked out, it is imperative that you seek dental attention for any hope of restoration.

At Pure Dental Health, we are here to help you avoid a dead tooth by providing complete and comprehensive dental care. With regular checkups and cleanings, you can prevent cavities from occurring, or they can be caught early on and treated. For injury or trauma to the mouth, we provide excellent tooth restoration and are here for your comfort and continued dental health.

Posted on behalf of Dr. Justin Scott
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Pure Dental HealthAtlanta Dentist
2285 Peachtree Rd NE, Suite 203
Atlanta, GA 30309
Phone: (678) 666-3642

Cavity Prevention

When it comes to cavity prevention the best person for the job is you. Choices you make on a daily basis are essential to keeping your mouth healthy and cavity free. As Benjamin Franklin once said, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” Doing simple actions routinely will help to ensure that your mouth does not fall victim to destruction and decay. The only catch is that you must actually do the simple actions – and that is entirely up to you.

Cavities are formed when bacteria inside the mouth produce acids that attack the tooth enamel and create holes in the teeth. These holes are called “cavities,” and they can lead to serious oral health issues and destruction. There are millions of bacteria living within your mouth on any given day. These bacteria start out helpful, assisting in the breakdown of food particles left behind after eating. However, when these bacteria are allowed to hang out inside the mouth for too long, they become destructive. As they are breaking down food particles they begin to produce acids to help with the process. These acids are destructive and begin to eat their way through the tooth enamel. When a hole is created in the tooth a cavity has been formed, making the tooth extremely susceptible to more devastating decay.

There are three simple steps that you can do to prevent cavities:

  1. Brush your teeth at least twice a day. Brushing helps to loosen up the bacteria from the teeth so that it is more easily rinsed away.
  2. Floss daily. Flossing is your number one defense against cavities. Floss removes bacteria-laden plaque from the gum line and from between the teeth where toothbrush bristles cannot reach.
  3. Visit the dentist for regular cleanings and dental exams.

At Pure Dental Health, we want to partner with you in cavity prevention. Taking the necessary steps to ensure that your mouth is healthy is the key to achieving and maintaining the healthiest and most beautiful smile possible. Call us today to schedule an appointment.

Posted on behalf of Dr. Justin Scott
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Pure Dental HealthAtlanta Dentist
2285 Peachtree Rd NE, Suite 203
Atlanta, GA 30309
Phone: (678) 666-3642

Your Child’s 1st Dental Appointment

It is imperative for parents to understand how important it is to take their children to the dentist from a very young age. Approximately 1 out of every 3 children will develop a cavity before they begin losing their baby teeth. It is a parent’s complete responsibility to care for their young children’s teeth, and taking children in to the dentist from the very start is part of that responsibility. The American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Dental Association both agree that children should be taken to the dentist for their first appointment by the time children reach 12 months of age. Many parents are shocked to learn that they have already missed this window, and question the need to bring children in at such a young age.

There are three specific reasons while early dental treatment is important for very young children:

• Early exposure allows children to become comfortable at the dentist’s office. Millions of Americans suffer from dental anxieties that prevent them from getting the oral health care that they need. It is believed that many, if not most, of these anxieties can be avoided by an early exposure to the dentist. Children who are brought in to the dentist’s office from the very start understand that visiting the dentist is simply a part of life. It is a normal occurrence that happens twice a year. They know what to expect, and they are comfortable with the procedures and experience.

• Educate parents on proper oral care for their children. Baby teeth are extremely susceptible to developing cavities due to the fast rate at which they erupt, improper or infrequent brushing, and dietary choices. Parents are completely responsible for the care of their children’s teeth until they are old enough to care for them – usually around the age of 6 (with parental supervision still required). This not only includes the parents brushing their children’s teeth at least twice a day, but it also includes making responsible food and drink choices for their children. Juice, soda, sweet tea, and candy have no place in a children’s diets. They are laden with sugar, and they leave the teeth incredible vulnerable to decay.

• Identify and break bad oral habits. This is often one of the most difficult areas to address with parents. Children who use a pacifier or suck on their thumbs or fingers need to be broken of this habit as early as possible. While pacifiers, thumbs, and fingers often offer great comfort to children, they also leave the mouth susceptible to improper development. Pressure from sucking on pacifiers or thumbs/fingers will misalign the teeth over time. Children’s palates are very pliable, and will change shape when sucking is prolonged. This misalignment not only leads to the need for orthodontic treatment, but it makes cleaning the teeth more difficult. It is also important that children past the age of 12 months never be allowed to fall asleep with a bottle or at the breast. Formula and breast milk bathe the teeth in sugar, and when the teeth are not brushed before children fall asleep, these sugars attack the teeth and quickly cause cavities.

Pure Dental Health understands the need for all patients to receive exceptional dental care, from the youngest patients to the oldest. Call now to schedule an appointment.

Posted on behalf of Dr. Justin Scott
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Pure Dental HealthAtlanta Dentist
2285 Peachtree Rd NE, Suite 203
Atlanta, GA 30309
Phone: (678) 666-3642