Herald Square Dental and The Denture Center

Winter Oral Health Tips

Winter Oral Health Tips

Winter is here and with it, comes the drastic change of weather! The cold temperatures are fun in theory, but what about the toll it takes on your health? Often times cold weather brings on a variety of pesky problems, like dry skin and irritated throats. But, the problems don’t stop there. In fact, your oral health is also affected by the change of weather. That’s why this season, we put together the ultimate guide on how to keep your oral health in perfect condition this winter season!

Tip #1 – Tooth Sensitivity: Many find that they experience increased tooth sensitivity to cold temperatures. This can not only come from foods, but the chilly air outside too! If you find that you are experiencing tooth sensitivity, there are tons of tricks you can do to help avoid discomfort. These include using a toothpaste specially formulated for sensitive teeth, or even rising out your mouth with salt water!

Tip #2 – Cold Sores: Cold sores can appear for a variety of reasons, including cold weather and a weakened immune system. To prevent a cold sore breakout, start by keeping your hands off of your mouth area! If you do feel a cold sore coming on, immediately apply a topical treatment to the area to stop the infection in its tracks.

Tip #3 – Chapped Lips: Chapped lips is one of the most common ailments of the winter season. To avoid painful cracked lips this season, invest in a good lip salve with SPF+ to keep them protected. In addition, it’s important to mention that your body moisturizes from the inside out, so remember to keep up with your daily water intake to help to keep your lips moisturized!

Tip #4 – Cavity Care: Let’s face it, the best part of the winter season is all the delicious foods! It’s fine to give into temptation and indulge in sweet treats, but just be sure to properly brush and floss afterwards to avoid cavities! In addition, always remember to drink plenty of water to help rinse away food particles and bacteria from your mouth! Incorporating dental friendly foods into your winter diet to help with cavity prevention will also benefit you! Foods such as crunchy fruits and vegetables, cheese and other foods high in calcium, are all perfect for keeping your teeth and gums healthy this winter!

Taking care of your oral health is important. That’s why we want to ensure that your oral health is in tip top shape this season! If you would like to schedule an appointment with our office, give us a call at Herald Square Denture & Dental Center Phone Number 212-689-0024! In the mean time, stay warm out there!

What to Expect When Expecting (..A Bone Graft)

What to Expect When Expecting A Bone Graft

Need a dental implant but don’t have sufficient jaw bone? Dental implants are the most effective option when it comes to replacing a tooth. In order to successfully get an implant, you need to have an adequate amount of jawbone. If you don’t, then you will need a bone graft before getting the actual implant. Bone grafting is when an implantologist will either harvest bone from another part of your body or uses a special bone grafting material to anchor it onto your jaw bone, thus increasing its’ strength and density. Although the procedure may sound pretty scary, we can promise you it’s nothing of the sort. Below are some things to expect when getting a bone graft!

First, it’s important to keep in mind that dental implant placement is most often performed in stages. The first stage is the removal of the damaged tooth. After the removal of the tooth is when the actual bone grafting takes place; which, as explained previously, is when a implantologist replaces lost bone, therefore creating a base for a dental implant. Once the jawbone heals, you’ll be able to move on to the next stage, which is setting up the base for the dental implant using a titanium post. After this heals, the prosthetic tooth will then be inserted.

Nobody leaves Herald Square Dental without teeth! At our office there will either be a flipper, partial denture or a temporary bridge to span the empty spaces until the bone graft integrates and until the implants are well integrated. The procedure is not particularly painful and the recovery is quick and the consultation is FREE!
This minor in-office surgical procedure can help prevent the loss of surrounding bone as well as supporting tooth replacement. As tooth loss increases, so does bone loss. Loosing bone decreases support of the facial structures which alters your appearance, making you look older than you are. The longer a tooth is missing, the greater the deterioration. Once fully integrated your dental implants can last a lifetime. This saves you time and money over the long term.

As always, if you have any questions regarding the procedure, or simply want to discuss the details further, simply call our office @ Herald Square Denture & Dental Center Phone Number 212-689-0024.

What Exactly is a Dental Implant?

Missing teeth? No problem. A dental implant is a way to replace an empty void that may be leaving you self-conscious about your smile. Whether the vacant spot is due to a sports injury, facial trauma, periodontal complication, or bad oral hygiene, it can fill the vacancy permanently and give you a boost of confidence. So, what exactly is a dental implant? Here are a few things you need to know:

• Dental implants act as a replacement for the roots of a tooth. Metaphorically speaking, they can be the anchor for crowns, bridges and dentures and are screwed into the jaw bone to provide support for replacement teeth. They are surgically inserted into the jawbone beneath the gum line.

• Dental implants resemble the shape of screws and once placed into the jawbone, will naturally bond with your natural bone to provide a strong base for artificial teeth.

• Dental implant surgery is one of the safest procedures done in dentistry.

• Dental implants will be the next best thing you’ll have to healthy and natural teeth.

• A dental implant is dependent on the oral health of the person undergoing treatment. There needs to be healthy tissue in the mouth and enough jaw bone to support these dental implants.

• After undergoing a dental implant procedure, keeping the structures healthy and clean should be done precisely and with attention to detail. This will help to maintain and ensure the long-term success of the treatment and the oral health of your mouth.

Don’t let a missing tooth or teeth stop you from living a full life without limits. Laugh and smile, indulge in foods without restriction, and most importantly, feel comfortable in your own skin. Call our office Herald Square Denture & Dental Center Phone Number 212-689-0024 to find out how a dental implant can be beneficial to you and the overall health of your teeth. What have you got to lose? Call us today!

5 Dental Tips to Keep Your Teeth Intact This Halloween

5 Dental Tips to Keep Your Teeth Intact This Halloween

Halloween is a time for fun, tricks, and best of all TREATS! It can be hard to avoid sweet temptations, especially with the amount of leftover candy that accumulates after the big day. While eating candy on Halloween is perfectly fine, it is important to have a game plan in order to not go overboard. Your teeth will thank you later.

1. Wait until a few days before Halloween to buy the candy!
One of the hardest parts of this time of year can be waiting until the day of Halloween to indulge in candy. You might find yourself sneaking into that bag of candy you bought ahead of time. Save some for the trick-or-treaters! To avoid the temptation, try buying the candy the day before Halloween, out of sight out of mind!

2. Eat Halloween treats shortly after mealtime.
When you are going to eat candy, get your fix with or shortly after a meal. According to the ADA, saliva production increases during meals. This can help cancel out the acids produced by bacteria in your mouth and rinse away food particles. Eating candy post mealtime will help reduce the residue that causes tooth decay.

3. Avoid hard and or sticky candies.
Hard and sticky candies are the worst Halloween offenders. Hard and sticky candies can remain in your mouth for longer periods of time. How long a sugary treat stays in your mouth effects your oral health. The stickier the candy, the longer it will take for your saliva to wash away the sticky residue.

4. Brush twice a day.
It is extra important to make sure you’re brushing twice a day while consuming sugary treats, but this should be a rule of thumb you follow every day! Brush your teeth twice a day for two minutes to ensure your teeth are taken care of.

5. Drink more water:
It’s always a good idea to drink plenty of water, especially when you are eating sugar. Fluoridated water helps fight cavities and prevent tooth decay!

While oral health should be taken seriously, you should always remember to have fun. Feel free to call our office and schedule your oral exam and your dental cleaning for the fall; post Halloween is a perfect time for a dental checkup-just sayin’! Herald Square Denture & Dental Center Phone Number 212-689-0024

What Can Good Oral Health Prevent?

When it comes to your teeth, practicing good oral hygiene should be at the top of your list. We only have one set of fully grown adult teeth that we use in every aspect of our lives. When we see family, friends and even strangers, one-third of the time our teeth are the first thing they notice. Having a well taken care of smile can make the difference in your social life. Aside from your teeth’s appearance, between meals and snacking, our teeth are constantly working for us. So, what are you doing to improve your teeth? Good oral health can prevent several undesirable dental traits and problems.

Making sure to brush your teeth for at least two minutes, scrape your tongue, floss daily and gargle with mouthwash twice daily can prevent bad breath caused from plaque and food build-up. Gum disease can be prevented by regularly flossing around the gums and teeth to loosen build-up and plaque that irritate the gums and cause cavities. Don’t let neglecting to maintain these oral health habits keep you from becoming a social butterfly.

Cavities are a pain. The toothache that comes from biting into a sugary treat can be enough to jumpstart your new oral health habits. In caring for your teeth, you can dramatically reduce the number of cavities that develop from the acid and bacteria left from foods, especially sweet ones.

Keeping your oral health in check may also inhibit costly dental procedures from accumulating. A cavity that is left untreated can quickly turn into a tooth in dire need of a root canal, and developing gum disease may require gum laser therapy or tooth extraction. Most certainly, teeth that are well taken care of will have less plaque build-up that causes bad breath, cavities and gum disease, and better oral health could potentially prevent overwhelming dental expenses in the future.

Want to know more about what good oral health can do for you? Give us a call to find out, and schedule your checkup today! Herald Square Denture & Dental Center Phone Number 212-689-0024

Healthy Foods for Healthy Smiles!

Healthy Food for Healthy Smiles

A healthy school lunch will not only give your child the energy they need throughout their school day, it will keep their teeth healthy too! Below are some examples of healthy foods that will keep your kid smiling all day long!

PB&J’s! While a popular choice, often times sugary jellies and nut butters are not great for kid’s teeth. Try switching to a natural peanut butter, and a preserve or fruit jam (aim for 5grams or sugar or less per serving). Use whole wheat bread as a healthy alternative too!

Cheese Please! Cheese is high in calcium which is probably one of the most important nutrients for your teeth. It is absorbed by tooth enamel and help block bacteria growth. Without calcium, your kid’s teeth could be in big trouble! Cheese also has protein, which is not only important for the growth and development of children, it also keeps their muscles strong and healthy making for a stronger smile.

Snack-Attack! Apples are great to munch on, they are high in water which help to dilute the sugars they contain. When you are chewing, the saliva production helps protect against tooth decay, pairing this with a low sugar nut butter makes an excellent snack! Edamame beans are also a great option, they are rich in calcium and are fun to eat too! Just make sure to get a salt free version to avoid too much sodium.

We want water! Although it seems simple, water is MUST. Often times we give our kids way to much juice and not enough water, and studies have shown that juice is just as bad for you as soda! Kids should be drinking 5-10 glasses of water each day, so encourage them to hydrate by sending them to school with a reusable water bottle they can keep filling up.

If you have any questions about what types of smile friendly foods your child should be eating, feel free to call our office today!

When do You Need a Bone Graft?

Bone grafts are essential for replacing missing or damaged bone in your jaw. Whether a cavity has reduced your tooth to an empty, gummy space after an extraction, or gum disease has caused loose teeth, a bone graft can repair and rebuild the damaged bone needed to support a dental implant. Surrounding teeth can also become loose and eventually fall out without healthy bone regeneration, which may cause future complications. Without bone grafting, a dental implant would not have enough mass to securely latch onto.

So, when do you need a bone graft?

• Once a tooth is lost, 25% of bone width is reduced within the first year. If left untreated for an extended period, there would not be enough surrounding jawbone to support a dental implant to replace a missing tooth. Once bone mass is gone, it cannot be reversed which is why a bone graft may be needed.

• Periodontal disease can also cause bone to disintegrate, which can lead to tooth loss. The bacteria slowly eat away at the jawbone and periodontal ligament, which connect teeth to bone.

• Dental trauma, including the persistence of grinding and clenching teeth, can cause excess wear on the tissue supporting tooth structure. The constant pressure can also lead to fractured or cracked teeth, which do not heal. Aside from grinding and clenching, trauma can also include a tooth getting knocked out from an accident or a fall. In this case, a bone graft may be needed as well.

Bone loss can be caused by several different circumstances, but one thing is for sure- a bone graft is a great alternative for repairing and building new bone. So, what are you waiting for? Call today for a consultation to see what our office can do for you! Herald Square Denture & Dental Center Phone Number 212-689-0024

The Healthcare Provider That I Am

by Paola Fonseca

During the nine years that I have been a registered dental hygienist, I have been called many different titles by patients, perhaps unaware of what I really do. Some patients have called me an “assistant”, a “nurse” or even a “doctor”. Knowing that some patients and the general public lack a precise idea of my profession, I felt inclined to elaborate on this topic.

The dental hygienist plays a significant role in the dental office and various healthcare settings such as schools, hospitals and community health centers, in addition to academic dentistry and dental education. The Dental hygiene degree offers a vast array of master’s degrees specializing in science, public health, healthcare administration and research.

An 8-hour dental board examination, a practical examination and local anesthesia exam are necessary to obtain a professional license. Dental hygienists are trained in documenting the patient’s medical history, taking vital measurements and removing plaque and calculus deposits from dental surfaces. Providing non- surgical soft tissue treatment and dental prevention treatments in addition to patient nutritional counseling and oral hygiene education are also components within our scope of practice. Dental hygienists are also expected to take CE courses to renew their license every 3 years with a minimum of 23 credits per renewal that include CPR and infection control.

One of the most important health services we provide is soft tissue management and prevention of gum disease. In simple language: we clean, maintain and condition soft tissue (gum), apply sealants to prevent the formation of cavities in young children, fluoride application, measurement of bone loss recession and bleeding points, assessment of tooth mobility, oral cancer screening and status of gum health.

As dental hygienists, our goal is to educate and create awareness in the community about the dental health-body connection. For example, diseases such as Alzheimer’s, heart disease, low birth weight and certain cancers are linked to a person’s oral health.

To learn more about our friendly, fun team, please call Herald Square Dental & The Denture Center today at Herald Square Denture & Dental Center Phone Number 212-689-0024!

Are Silver Fillings Safe?

Hi, I’m Dr. Arthur Yam of Herald Square Dental in Midtown Manhattan.

A question I am often asked is “Are silver fillings safe?”

People are becoming more and more careful about what they put into their bodies, so this is a great question!

Silver fillings are made up of an amalgam of metals including silver, mercury, tin and copper. There is a lot of controversy over whether the mercury component is harmful or not.

Mercury is a metal that occurs naturally in the environment. We are exposed to it through air, drinking water, soil and food. Very low levels don’t cause any health issues but at higher levels it acts as a neurotoxin.

We used to believe that the mercury in the fillings was inert and that there was no leakage, but it has been found that very small amounts of mercury do in fact get released as vapors.

Studies have shown that the amount of mercury people are exposed to from their silver fillings is extremely low. In fact, it is less than the amount that we are exposed to on a daily basis from the environment or from the food we eat. The low level of mercury exposure from silver fillings is completely safe.

Scientific evidence confirms that silver fillings do not cause health issues.

That being said, at Herald Square Dental, we almost never use silver fillings any more. Almost all of the fillings we place are tooth colored composite fillings.

The current generation of composite, or tooth colored fillings are just as strong as silver fillings and aesthetically, the results are night and day.

So even though silver fillings are perfectly safe, composite fillings are the way to go moving forward.

Another common question I am often asked is, “should I remove my silver fillings and replace them with white ones?”

My advice is, if a silver filling is intact and the tooth is healthy, you should leave it alone.

When you remove a filling you have to remove some natural tooth structure with it, leaving less tooth structure to hold a new filling and to protect the nerve.

Placing a new filling can also cause sensitivity.

So my advice is – if a tooth is healthy, leave it alone.

However, if the filling is compromised or there is a new cavity in the tooth then yes, you should definitely replace the old filling.

What if existing silver fillings bother you aesthetically? Silver fillings are dark and sometimes especially when they are on lower teeth, they are visible when you open your mouth to eat or speak.

If having silver fillings makes you self-conscious and affects your confidence, then that is another good reason to replace them.

So the 2 good reasons for replacing a silver filling are: 1) for aesthetics and 2) to fix a broken or decayed old filling or tooth.

I hope I’ve addressed some of your dental concerns today!
This is Dr. Arthur Yam. Keep Smiling!

National Ice Cream Month: Fun Facts About Your Favorite Summer Treat!

fun ice cream facts

 

I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream! Flashback to when you were a child
on a hot summer day, when all of the sudden you hear that magical jingle that captivated all of
our hearts; the ice cream truck! In the year 1984, President Ronald Reagan decided that from
then on out, the Month of July would be recognized as National Ice Cream Month! Because
really, what’s better than a big, cold, scoop of ice cream on a hot summer day? That was a trick
question—there is nothing better. Whether it’s vanilla, chocolate, mint chip, or pistachio,
there’s a flavor for everyone. Ice cream has that ability to brighten anybody’s day and for that,
we’re eternally grateful. With that being said, let’s celebrate this month by highlighting some of
the most fun facts about ICE CREAM!

#1: The best way to eat ice cream? In a waffle cone of course! However, it wasn’t until
1904 when an American ice cream vendor at World’s Fair in Missouri ran out of cups due to the
high demand of guests, so he quickly rushed on over to a local waffle vendor and asked him to
roll up his waffles so that they could hold the ice cream. The rest is history!
#2: Do us a favor really quick. Open your Freezer. Is there at least one form of ice cream
in there? There should be! In fact, approximately 98% of all U.S families have ice cream in their
homes at ALL TIMES! So, if your freezer is lacking, run to your local grocery store and pick up a
pint so you’re not the odd one out!

#3: Brain freezes…. Ice cream’s arch nemesis. A brain freezes is a short-lasting sensation,
normally lasting for about ten seconds, that often occurs when you eat or drink cold items in a
short amount of time. The most tried and true way to get rid of a brain freeze? Place your
tongue on the roof of your mouth and wait it out!

#4: Did you know one that one of the biggest ingredients in ice cream is AIR? That’s
right, air. Air is added cream to make the consistency lighter, while also improving the texture.
It’s often said that the amount of air added to the batch will determine the overall quality (the
more air, the cheaper the quality).

#5: Throwback to the year 1665, when the first documented ice cream recipe was
handwritten in a recipe book. The ingredients? Orange flower water, mace, and ambergris, also
known as whale barf. Let’s just say we sure are grateful for how far the flavors have evolved….
This month, we want you to enjoy all that ice cream has to offer. We challenge you to
try a new flavor that may be out of your comfort zone; who knows…maybe it’ll be your new
favorite. Give us a call at Herald Square Denture & Dental Center Phone Number 212-689-0024 if you have any questions or concerns regarding your oral
health!