One of New Jersey's TOP dentists

Opening Hours : View Hours of Operation
  Contact : Call us: 908-232-0400

All Posts in Category: Benefits of a Healthy Mouth

mouth body connection

The Mouth-Body Connection Could Not Be Stronger

With toothpaste ads hyper focused on fresh-smelling breath and dazzling white teeth, it’s easy to forget that the benefits of maintaining proper oral hygiene extend far beyond minty breath and pearly whites. In fact, because poor oral health can contribute to various other health issues, it becomes even more crucial to develop healthy oral habits. Need extra motivation to brush twice a day? Just read these six health issues that are affected by a good oral hygiene routine (or lack thereof).

Reduced risk of heart disease

A 2007 study published in the Harvard Health Publications linked chronic gum inflammation with heart disease. In particular, the bacteria that is known to cause periodontitis is also present in the dangerous plaque build-ups in blocked arteries. Other cardiovascular issues that can develop in conjunction with heart disease include blocked vessels and strokes. Improving oral health, particularly gum disease lowers your risk of these cardiovascular problems.

Reduce complications from diabetes

Individuals with diabetes often find it difficult for their bodies to fight infections. As poor oral health often leads to inflammation and infections, it becomes that much more difficult for a person with diabetes to fight an oral infection. Prevent gum infections by creating a proper oral routine that includes brushing after each meal and flossing daily.

Improved lung health

Just because an infection begins in your mouth doesn’t mean that the bacteria stay in your mouth. Bacteria from oral infections can easily travel to the lungs, which then increases lung problems such as inflammation. If you suspect you have an infection, call your dentist immediately before the infection grows and spreads.

Pregnancy and birth weight

While morning sickness may create its challenges by exposing the teeth to high acid levels, excellent oral health is vital for maintaining optimal health for both a pregnant mother and the baby. Experts have shown that mothers with gingivitis are at risk to give birth to babies with low birth weight. Remember to keep routine dental appointments during pregnancy and ask your dentist any questions you have regarding pregnancy and oral health.

Reduce inflammation and joint pain

While it may seem odd that inflammation and pain in joints are connected to oral health, studies show that poor oral health contributes to inflammation elsewhere in the body, and that includes joints. Particularly, the study focuses on Rheumatoid Arthritis, a disease that causes painful joint swelling. How are these two conditions linked? Scientists believe that the method of tissue destruction in gum disease is the same method of destruction in Rheumatoid Arthritis.

Improve mental health and memory

Perhaps the most obvious – yet least discussed –effect of poor oral health is on mental health. Poor hygiene, especially in the cases of decayed teeth, leads to extremely noxious breath, which can create embarrassing social situations and low self-esteem. On the other hand, a mouth free from infections, pain, or decay increases self-esteem and confidence. In addition to increased confidence, good oral health also affects memory; gingivitis has been linked to poorer scores on memory tests.

Keeping your mouth clean is more than just improving your smile; the mouth-body relationship is one that will improve your overall health.

Read More
good oral health

Why Good Oral Health Can Prevent Disease and Sickness

Tooth decay and gum disease can affect more than just your dental health. Research shows that your oral health and systemic health are closely linked. The sticky plaque that builds up on teeth is made up of millions of bacteria. If you slack on your dental care, bacteria from the mouth can lead to inflammation or infection in other parts of the body. This is even more likely if your immune system is already compromised by disease or certain medical treatments. Fortunately, good oral health can significantly reduce your risk of developing a disease and other sicknesses caused by oral bacteria.

Link Between Oral Health and Overall Health

Poor dental care can result in much more than teeth stains and the occasional cavity. In fact, bacteria from periodontal disease and inflammation of the gums can enter your bloodstream and travel to the heart. Cardiovascular disease, or heart disease, has been associated with poor dental health. In a recent study that observed the link between cardiovascular and periodontal disease, researchers found that people with diagnosed periodontal disease are four times more likely to develop a lacunar stroke.

Respiratory infection is another risk of poor oral health. Gum disease can cause you to develop infections in your lungs, such as pneumonia. These infections are caused by breathing in bacteria from infected teeth and gums over a prolonged period. According to the Infectious Diseases Society of America, people who never undergo dental checkups have an 86 percent greater risk of developing pneumonia than people who visit their dentist twice a year.

Your oral health can also affect your long-term memory and thinking skills. Bacteria from gum disease or gingivitis can reach the brain through the bloodstream or nerve channels in the head. In time, these bacteria can lead to the development of various dementias, such as Alzheimer’s disease. According to a study consisting of donated brain samples from ten people with dementia and ten people without, the bacteria Porphyromonas gingivalis was found in the brain of dementia patients. These bacteria have been found to induce brain changes in Alzheimer’s patients.

Tips for Maintaining Proper Oral Hygiene

Good oral hygiene consists of a mouth free of decay and debris. Your gums should appear pink and should not hurt or bleed when you brush or floss. Also, bad breath should not be an ongoing issue. If you struggle with these issues, it’s time to enhance your oral health care. Brush at least twice a day and floss daily to prevent the development of tooth decay and gum disease. You should also visit your dentist at least twice a year for a thorough examination and cleaning.

How you care for your teeth and gums has a direct effect on the rest of your body. Your mouth is a breeding ground for bacteria and must be properly cleaned on a routine basis to keep the production of bacteria at a healthy level. Neglect your teeth and gums and your health as a whole will suffer. If you are experiencing health problems that you believe are associated with your oral health, discuss your concerns with a dentist.

Read More
probiotics-gum-disease-oral

Using Probiotics to Fight Gum Disease

If you’re experiencing bleeding, swollen or receding gums, these could be signs of gum disease, which is a serious gum infection. The causes of gum disease include poor oral hygiene, medical conditions or genetic predisposition. Treating gum disease may be as simple as improving oral hygiene or as involved as oral surgery, depending on the severity of the disease. Whatever the cause, gum disease requires immediately dental treatment to avoid further issues such as tooth loss. Common treatments for advanced gum disease is scaling and root planing, and new research suggests that probiotics can help support the effectiveness of this procedure.

Scaling and Root Planing Explained

When someone has gum disease, bacteria thrive and grow between their teeth and gums leading to infection. As the infection worsens, the bacteria makes the space between the teeth and gums larger to make room for their growing numbers, and this leads to larger “gum pockets.” To stop and reverse the infection, a dentist needs to remove the bacteria from the gum pockets through a procedure such as scaling and root planing. During scaling, the dentist removes tartar, the hardened oral bacteria, from the tooth surfaces. Following scaling, the dentist performs root planing that smooths out the tooth area that bacteria made rough. Without smoothing that rough surface, the oral bacteria will return quickly. To aid in the elimination of the remaining bacteria, dentists usually introduce antibiotics to prevent new bacteria growth.

Assistance from Probiotics

Although scaling and root planing is a highly effective way to treat and reverse gum disease, it’s not 100% effective, and sometimes the bacteria starts growing in the gum tissue again, causing a worse infection. This is especially a problem for patients who don’t maintain good oral hygiene or are genetically vulnerable to gum disease. According to a new study, probiotics may be able to help in the fight against gum disease. Probiotics refer to the bacterium or other organisms that have a symbiotic and beneficial relationships with the body. Probiotics can aid in oral health because they attack or compete with harmful bacteria, which helps protect dental implants and prevents reinfection of gums following root planing and scaling. Some probiotics such as Lactobacillus Reuteri can also improve the attachment between gums and teeth and lead to lower incidences of bleeding gums. Probiotics are considered safe and may be an ideal addition to traditional treatments for gum disease.

Creative Dental provides the most innovative, effective treatments to prevent and reverse gum disease so every patient can have a healthy, strong gums and teeth.

Read More
Men Oral Health

Men’s Unique Oral Health Aspects

Men and women are different in numerous ways, and this includes their oral health. Although everyone benefits from practicing good oral hygiene and visiting the dentist regularly for exams and cleanings, there are certain things that differentiate men need to know. Taking a proactive approach to dental health and understanding their unique oral makeup can help men avoid serious dental issues and maintain a healthy smile.

Larger, longer tongues

For whatever evolutionary reason, human males have larger, longer tongues than females, and that may be because their mouths are usually a bit bigger too. That larger tongue needs as much attention as a woman’s smaller tongue and men need to inspect their tongue to ensure it’s healthy. Healthy tongues are firm, pink and free of unusual bumps, dry spots, discolored areas or colored coatings. An unhealthy-looking tongue can be an early indicator of health issues such as high blood pressure, diabetes, cancer or an infection. If a man notices something strange with his tongue, it’s time to visit the dentist for an exam.

Healthy smile can improve dating life

One of the first things both men and women look at when they first meet someone is their smile. In the world of offline and online dating, a man with a confident, healthy smile in person and photos can greatly improve his chances of making a connection. According to certain online dating apps, a man who takes care of his oral health is more likely to take care of his overall health or at least appear that he does.

Men’s beards usually cleaner than their toothbrushes

Although bacteria exist in beards, it’s not the same type of bacteria found in the toilet, which is good news for beard lovers. What’s not good news is that while a man’s beard may be clean, his toothbrush could be teaming with bacteria found in toilets. Actually, anyone who stores their toothbrush on the sink or out in the open somewhere in the bathroom can have traces of fecal bacteria on it. The best way to keep a toothbrush free of such unpleasant bacteria is by storing it inside a cabinet and replacing the entire toothbrush or toothbrush head every three months and after any sickness. To avoid transferring such bacteria to their beards, men should never groom with an old toothbrush.

Nighttime snacking issues

Men tend to snack more at night than their female counterparts do, and they don’t concern themselves with fad diets, but they also tend to skip meals during the day. Studies show that men may start out the day by eating healthy, but by the end of the day snack more and succumb to junk food cravings at night. Add in the fact that at least half of men only brush their teeth once a day and it creates issues for men’s oral health. When men don’t brush their teeth after consuming sugars and acids before bed or during a midnight snack, that bacteria sits on the teeth overnight and leads to plaque buildup and accelerated decay. Men and women both need to brush their teeth at least twice a day, floss daily and maintain regular dental visits to ensure great oral health. A man who wants to keep his smile healthy and handsome also needs to seek treatment for bite or alignment issues to avoid tooth damage and ensure overall health.

There’s nothing “manly” about ignoring your dental health so contact Creative Dental today to set up an exam and cleaning.

Read More
healthy mouth healthy life

A Healthy Smile Equals Healthier Life

When you’re not feeling up to going to the gym, it’s encouraging to know that just flossing your teeth is a healthy and easy way to increase your life expectancy. Daily flossing can increase a person’s life expectancy by 3-5 years because it prevents bacterial mouth infections that can affect the bloodstream, harden arteries and cause heart disease. Even if you don’t like flossing (as most people don’t), it’s worth the effort for a healthier life. Other ways you might not know about show how having a healthy smile promotes a healthier life.

Maintain healthy blood sugar

Over 100 million people in the U.S. have diabetes or are pre-diabetic, which means they have a high risk of developing diabetes. With so many people eating processed, pre-made food that’s full of sugar, diabetes is fast becoming an American epidemic. Fortunately, by maintaining a clean mouth free from gum disease, you can improve your body’s ability to maintain healthy blood sugar. Avoiding gum disease can also prevent other bacteria related health conditions such as heart disease and stroke. Another great way to maintain oral health and overall health is by reducing your sugar intake, drinking more water and brushing after meals to reduce bacteria that can lead to gum disease.

Lower risk of dementia

A recent study of residents in a California retirement community found that oral health and mental health have a strong connection. The study covered a period from 1992-2010 and involved participants ranging in age from 52-105 with the average age around 81 years old. None of the study participants had dementia when the study began, and they all answered questions regarding their dental health such as if they wore dentures and what condition their teeth were in.

When the researchers returned to the community 18 years later, they conducted interviews, reviewed medical records and researched death certificates to discover that approximately 1/5 of them had received a diagnosis of dementia. Of the women in the study who reported brushing less than once a day, 21 out of 78 had dementia by 2010, which is around 1 case per 3.7 women. The female participants who brushed at least once a day had one case of dementia per 4.5 women. What this indicates is that there’s a 65% increased chance of developing dementia for those who brush less than once a day. Researchers believe the reason for this is that without daily brushing, gum disease can develop, and when bacteria enter the brain, it can cause damage, inflammation and increased likelihood of dementia and other cognitive disorders.

Brushing your teeth twice a day, flossing daily and maintaining regular dental exams and cleanings does much more than just brighten your smile, it helps keep your whole body healthy. Schedule your exam and cleaning with Creative Dental today to promote your best health.

Read More
drinking straws and oral health

Oral Health Benefits of Drinking Straws

Many people might not know that something as simple as using a straw to drink liquids can benefit their oral health. It’s common practice to use a straw in drinks at restaurants, but it’s less common for people to use straws at the workplace or home. Knowing the oral health benefits of using a drinking straw on a regular basis may encourage more people to change their drinking habits.

Benefits for teeth

Using a straw on a routine basis at home and out in public has several oral benefits as it protects your teeth. These benefits include:

Prevents stains – Using a straw avoids constant and direct contact between dark-colored drinks such as iced tea, and this prevents stains that can happen after long term exposure to these darker liquids.

Less exposure to sugary substances – Just like using a straw keeps stain-causing liquids from direct contact, it keeps sugary liquids away from your teeth. Less exposure to sugar-filled drinks can reduce the risk of bacteria and sticky residue from sticking to your teeth and causing tooth erosion.

Improves hygiene – Dishes in restaurants can serve as hosts for bacteria due to how many people they’re exposed to during a typical day. Even disposable, on-the-go cups can hold germs, so by using a straw, people can reduce their exposure to germs and bacteria that can make them sick and cause oral health issues.

More convenient – Anyone who has tipped an ice-filled cup up and had the ice shift and drench them as they drink knows that drinking from a straw reduces this risk and is more convenient than finding a dry shirt. Drinking from a straw is easier than unscrewing a cap too.

Safer – Drinking through a straw takes a controlled amount of liquid into the mouth, which lowers the chances of choking.

Additional ways to protect teeth

Using a drinking straw is one way to protect teeth from direct exposure to sugary and/or dark drinks that can cause erosion and stains, but there are other ways to protect teeth including:

  • Drinking water after consuming staining or sugary beverages to neutralize acid
  • Brushing teeth immediately after drinking dark or sugary beverages
  • Regular professional dental cleanings to prevent decay and discoloration

Even small changed like drinking through a straw or chasing sugary drinks with water can make a huge difference in a person’s oral health. Cutting back on sugar-filled beverages is another way to improve oral and overall health.

Keep your teeth looking and feeling their healthiest with professional cleanings and cosmetic dentistry from Creative Dental.

Read More
Dentist pulling a tooth

Dental Treatment to Prevent Tooth Extraction

Suffering damage or trauma to a tooth can cause great anxiety and the fear that the only treatment option is extraction. Fortunately, depending on the extent of the damage or trauma, there are dental treatments can help save the tooth and avoid losing the tooth. Having a missing tooth or teeth can have a negative impact on a person’s confidence, chewing ability, teeth alignment and overall health, so it’s important to understand how to avoid tooth extraction whenever safely possible.

Root canals can save teeth

Having a root canal treatment is the top alternative to extracting a tooth. Also called endodontic treatment, a root canal treats the living pulp inside the tooth. Tooth pulp is the inner tissue consisting of blood vessels, nerves, and connective tissues that provide nourishment to the tooth as it develops. In a fully-developed tooth, removing the pulp via a root canal has little or no effect because the tooth receives nourishment from supporting tissues.

A root canal may become necessary when cracks, chips, decay, dental procedures, faulty crowns or trauma trigger inflammations and infections in the tooth pulp. Treating the damaged tooth prevents further pain and potential abscess. During a root canal, the dentist removes inflamed or infected tooth pulp and then cleans, disinfects, shapes, fills and seals the hollow to prevent future infections. Following the root canal with a dental crown or filling placement helps restore tooth structure and function, and there’s a high probability the tooth can remain healthy for a lifetime with proper care.

Benefits of root canal treatment

Having a root canal prevents tooth extraction while restoring and protecting the health of your damaged or injured tooth. The treatment is non-surgical, common and safe. Additional ways to save a damaged tooth and avoid extraction include treating an infection with antibiotics, but this may not be effective as a root canal and delaying the proper treatment may increase the likelihood of tooth extraction. Patients who take painkillers to dull the pain of tooth damage risk the infection or inflammation growing worse and can eventually lead to tooth loss. Treating issues within the tooth pulp early is the best way to save a tooth. If tooth extraction becomes necessary, there are several replacement options available, but dentists prefer to save the natural tooth whenever possible.

If you’re experiencing any tooth discomfort or pain, contact Creative Dental promptly so we can diagnose the problem and protect the health of your smile.

Read More
Maintain your oral health this holiday season

Maintain Great Oral Health this Season

During the busy pace of this time of year, it’s easy to lose track of important things like maintaining great oral hygiene. However, giving yourself the gift of a healthy smile is one of the most important gifts of all as it’s a gift you want to keep for your entire life. By making and keeping your oral health a priority this season, you’ll have even more reasons to smile happily.

The temptation of holiday gatherings

Getting together with family and friends this time of year is wonderful for your spirit, but not necessarily great for your oral health. The assortment of sugary foods and alcoholic beverages can tempt you to indulge more than usual, and that’s unwise for your oral and overall health. With increased social activities and expectations also come more stress, and that can cause you to neglect your oral health. Not eating right and forgetting to brush combine to increase the risk of cavities, decay and gum disease. To avoid such problems, employ some sensible holiday practices that can have you ringing in the New Year worry-free.

Consume wine sensibly

Wine has high acidity levels, whether it’s red or white. That acid can eat away at the tooth enamel that protects teeth against cavities and decay. To prevent such damage, consume wine in moderation, don’t swish it around in your mouth, and drink water periodically to rinse the acid from your teeth.

Limit sugary treats

Cookies, chocolate, candy canes and other sugary treats this time of year provide ample food for the bacteria in your mouth to thrive. Increased bacteria make it more likely you’ll develop cavities, but you can prevent this by brushing and flossing after eating sweets, chewing sugarless gum and drinking plenty of water. All of those activities boost saliva production and helps wash bacteria from your mouth.

Reduce stress

We discussed reducing holiday stress in a previous post, but it doesn’t hurt to reiterate the point. When you’re feeling stress, it can lead to teeth clenching or grinding and result in headaches, jaw pain, and chipped teeth. Relieving and reducing stress when possible helps as does asking your dentist about a night guard to prevent tooth damage from nightly teeth grinding. If you feel yourself becoming stressed, try not to clench your jaw and find effective ways to relax.

The gift of great oral health is something that continues giving throughout the year, and you can get a jump start on an amazing new year with Creative Dental and our wide range of dentistry services.

Read More
Visit the dentist every 6 months

Six Month Checkups are More Important Than You Think

Although you may frequently read and hear how important it is to visit the dentist at least every six months, you may not entirely understand why it’s so important. Regular dental visits are just one part of taking care of your teeth and gums and work together with brushing and flossing regularly and eating well to improve your oral health. A healthy mouth is essential for a healthy body, especially where infection and inflammation are concerned, which proves that dental visits every 6 months do much more than just benefit your smile.

The necessity of dental cleanings

Even with the best at-home oral care including brushing and flossing daily, plaque and tartar buildup on your teeth that you can’t remove with normal brushing. A professional dental cleaning removes that plaque and tartar from your teeth and gives your teeth a nice polish to boost your smile. Plaque starts to form within 24 hours after consuming food and if two weeks pass without proper brushing, that plaque transforms into tartar under the gums. Brushing and flossing can’t touch that tartar and without professional cleaning, it can lead to gingivitis, decay and gum disease. Thankfully, with proper brushing and flossing, it takes much longer for tartar to develop but it still requires regular dental exams and cleaning to remove the plaque build-up and tartar before it becomes a problem.

Finding and treating tooth decay

Quite often, tooth decay and cavities present no visible signs so it’s vital that you visit the dentist for low radiation digital x-rays than can clearly show trouble spots. By finding the cavities early, the dentist can treat them right away and you avoid the need for more involved and costly treatments if the decay continues unchecked. Your dentist wants to help protect your smile and avoid the need for treatments such as crowns, root canals and tooth extractions as much as possible. A six-month checkup is an important form of prevention when it comes to tooth decay.

Alerting dentist to new developments

Your six-month checkup is the ideal time to inform your dental professional about any new developments that may affect your oral health. This includes pregnancy and other changes in your health. It also includes any bad habits you’ve developed such as grinding your teeth, brushing too hard and clenching your teeth. If you’re grinding your teeth at night, you may not even know it and the dentist can diagnose this issue and work on a treatment plan before it can cause damage. The dentist will also work with you to correct any other issues before they can lead to damage such as chipped or broken teeth.

When you visit the dentist regularly every 6 months, you improve the chances that all you’ll need is a routine cleaning. Even if it’s been a while since you’ve been to the dentist and you’re afraid you’ll need extensive treatments or have an overall fear of the dentist, at Creative Dental we’re dedicated to your comfort and want you to have a painless, stress-free experience. Contact us today to learn more about our services and to discover how we can protect and improve your smile.

Read More
Nail Biting

Why You Should Stop Biting Your Nails

Nail biting is a common and universal bad habit that dentists discourage in their patients. It’s an easy habit to pick up and a hard one to break, but stopping nail biting is very beneficial to oral health. Quitting the bad habit of nail biting may not be easy, but there are solutions that can help people stop so they can improve and maintain healthy teeth.

Risks associated with nail biting

When you bite your nails, it places pressure on your front teeth that they’re not designed to withstand. Shearing is the name for this kind of pressure on the front teeth. Teeth are highly durable and can handle different stresses, but shearing from nail biting may lead to a chipped tooth or teeth. A majority of nail biters use their front incisors to bite, and this can damage these highly visible teeth.

Dental treatments for nail biting damage

Although a dentist can repair a chipped tooth with a filling or dental bonding, continued nail biting could break the dental repair and require further treatments. Repeated dental treatments of damaged teeth can lead to the need for a more permanent solution like a dental crown.

Prevention is the best treatment

The best treatment for nail biting damage is to avoid it all together by remedying the bad habit. Even if your dentist has told you that you’re risking damage to your teeth, or you’ve already damaged your teeth, lifelong habits are hard to break, especially if you bite your nails to deal with stress. You need to be persistent in your efforts to stop biting your nails and utilize other available tools as necessary. Stores sell polishes that have an unpleasant, non-toxic flavor to discourage nail biting, but they may not work for you. A good way to start is to replace the bad habit with a better habit that keeps your mouth occupied such as chewing sugar-free gum. If you chew sugar-free gum after meals that can further help your oral health as it increases saliva production, which helps wash away food residue and bacteria.

Biting your nails may seem harmless to you, but it’s not as it can damage your teeth to the point of requiring dental repair. You should also never use your teeth for opening packages, chewing on pens or pencils or chewing ice as that can also damage teeth. If you’ve chipped a tooth biting your nails or want to find ways to break the habit, contact Creative Dental today so they can ensure the health and beauty of your smile for a lifetime.

Read More