Welcome to our Blog

One of the great things about dentistry is being able to enhance patient’s lives so significantly. Allowing people to look better, smile more readily, be free of pain, chew and function normally, live longer and have nice fresh breath for speaking and kissing are just a few of the things we do to improve the lives of everyone we touch. Even the most basic dental procedures are incredibly important – without good dental hygiene and regular cleanings millions more teeth would be lost every year. We hope you enjoy our blog and find the information within useful and sometimes even entertaining.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

What's in Your Toothpaste?

Toothpaste — What's In It?

Squeezing out the facts

Toothpaste - What's in it.
Brushing one's teeth has, for hundreds of years, been a hygienic and social necessity. Removing the bacterial biofilm, or plaque, that builds up on clean teeth every 12 to 24 hours helps prevent tooth decay, gum disease, and bad breath. None of us would think of leaving the house before brushing with a favourite toothpaste — unless, of course, we ran out. Then we would make a beeline for the nearest drug store rather than improvise for even one brushing! But what's in this substance we put in our mouths several times a day? And can toothpastes really do what they claim to do?
The short answer to that second question is yes — if the American Dental Association Seal of Acceptance is on the label. That seal means the manufacturer's claims have been independently verified. If you don't see the seal, you might want to take a closer look at the ingredients list. As you compare labels, you will notice that certain terms appear frequently.

Toothpaste Demystified

There are various classes of ingredients you will find in all toothpastes, and others only in products designed for specific purposes such as reducing sensitivity, tartar or gum inflammation, or even whitening your teeth.
Here are some things to look for:
Burnt eggshells.
Egyptians scrubbed their teeth with a mixture of ox-hoof ashes, burnt eggshells and pumice as far back as 5000 BC.
One of the main points of using toothpaste is to make the mechanical action of brushing more effective. In order to scrub off stains, you need a substance with a little graininess. This has been understood since ancient times; Egyptians scrubbed their teeth with a mixture of ox-hoof ashes, burnt eggshells and pumice as far back as 5000 BC. Ancient Romans used an even rougher blend of crushed bones and oyster shells, plus powdered charcoal and bark. Even in the 18th century AD, the British were including brick dust and crushed China in their tooth powder recipes.
Abrasives (commonly called cleaning and polishing agents) in toothpastes have been produced that are much milder since then, the idea being to clean yet preserve tooth enamel. In fact, toothpastes are tested to see if the abrasive component can remove stains without damaging tooth structure. The degree of abrasiveness of a given compound depends on how much water it contains (also known as the level of hydration), the size and shape of its particles, source, purity, and how it has been treated both physically and chemically. Ideally, abrasives should be inert chemically, meaning they will not form new compounds with other substances in the toothpaste. Today, the abrasives you might find in your toothpaste include hydrated silica (which can be made from sand), hydrated alumina, calcium carbonate, and dicalcium phosphates. None of these materials would have any cleaning effect on teeth without the scrubbing action of a toothbrush. Likewise, brushing teeth without an abrasive-containing toothpaste will not adequately clean and polish the tooth surfaces and will not remove stains.
Your toothpaste foams because it contains a detergent, another type of cleaning ingredient. The purpose of a detergent is to loosen and break down substances on your teeth that would otherwise not be soluble, meaning they could not be dissolved and rinsed away with water. Although we might associate the word “detergent” with harsher cleaning products, detergents in toothpastes are mild so as not to irritate sensitive oral tissues.
Detergents are also known as “surfactants,” short for surface active agents. They are able to break through the tension at the surface of a liquid. Surface tension is the property that makes a fluid appear as if it has a skin — noticeable when dust or even denser materials settle or float on it. The way soap breaks down grease is an example of surfactant action.
The most common detergent/surfactant in toothpaste is sodium lauryl sulfate. You may have noticed it in other beauty products that foam, such as shampoo. This ingredient can be derived from coconut or palm kernel oil. While there have been internet rumors that sodium lauryl sulfate is dangerous, these claims are unsubstantiated by scientific research. This detergent has actually been used safely in toothpaste for more than 50 years. One credible concern, according to the Journal of the American Dental Association, is increased oral irritation in people prone to canker sores. These individuals should be aware that it is possible to buy toothpaste without sodium lauryl sulfate.
First introduced into toothpaste formulas in 1914, fluoride is arguably the most valuable component in toothpaste. But it was not until the 1950's that formulations were developed in which the fluoride was available to react with tooth enamel. Marketing of the first effective fluoride toothpaste (Crest) began in February 1955 and was accepted by the American Dental Association in 1960. Fluoride serves an extremely important function: to strengthen tooth enamel and make teeth more resistant to decay. Fluoride is actually incorporated into the enamel structure. If the enamel surface of a tooth is exposed to acid either ingested or produced by oral bacteria, the affected surface can absorb fluoride if present, thereby helping to reverse the process. This not only “remineralizes” the affected surface, but actually makes it stronger and more resistant to acid attack (with repeated and frequent application). Tooth enamel strengthened with fluoride is also more resistant to acid attack in the first place. All toothpastes that carry the American Dental Association Seal of Acceptance contain fluoride and have been shown to be effective in preventing dental decay. You will find fluoride in toothpaste in the form of sodium fluoride, stannous fluoride or sodium monofluorophosphate (MFP). [NOTE: Fluoride)“containing toothpastes do not need a preservative as the fluoride inhibits bacterial growth.]
Humectant Systems
This refers to a combination of ingredients that retain moisture in the toothpaste (humectants) and keep all the ingredients from separating (binding agents). If toothpaste didn't have these components, it would dry out or require stirring before use just like paint. Here are some common components of humectant systems:
  • Humectants: glycerol, propylene glycol and sorbitol.
  • Binders: Carrageenan (seaweed gum), gum arabic (sap from the Acacia tree), sodium carboxymethylcellulose and magnesium aluminum silicate (both synthetics).
  • Preservatives for non-fluoride toothpastes: sodium benzoate, methyl paraben, ethyl paraben (gentle antimicrobial agents used as preservatives in foods, beverages and cosmetics).
The ADA will not put its seal on toothpastes that contain sugar or any other ingredient that promotes tooth decay.
Toothpaste would taste pretty bad without the addition of flavouring agents, which is why you will always find various natural and artificial flavourings and sweeteners such as saccharin. The humectant sorbitol also adds a sweet taste. The ADA will not put its seal on toothpastes that contain sugar or any other ingredient that promotes tooth decay.

Additional Therapeutic Ingredients

While the above list applies to all toothpastes, other ingredients will appear on the labels of toothpastes designed for specific purposes.

For other interesting and informative dental articles, visit this site http://www.deardoctor.com

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

What is Your Smile Worth?

What Can Your Smile Do For You?

According to a recent study done by the American Dental Association, the feature that others find most attractive is not our hair, eyes, or body - it is our smile!

In light of this, don't worry about trying to compete with the latest supermodel or those impossible-to-beat images we see on every billboard and magazine ad.  Just flash your pearly whites and smile!

There's more to it than that... Anti-aging expert, Dr. mark Stibich has come up with some fantastic reasons to smile.  Here are just a few.

  • Smiling Changes Our Mood
Next time you are feeling down, try putting on a smile. Smiling can trick the body into helping you change your mood for the better.

  • Smiling Is Contagious
When someone is smiling they lighten up the room and make things happier.  Smile lots and you will draw people to you.  

  • Smiling Relieves Stress
Stress can really show up in our faces.  Smiling helps to prevent us from looking tired, worn down, and overwhelmed.  When you are stressed, take time to put on a smile.  The stress should be reduced and you'll be better able to take action.

  • Smiling Boosts Your Immune System
Stress can really show up in our faces.  Smiling helps to prevent us from looking tired, worn down, and overwhelmed.  When you are stressed, take time to put on a smile.  The stress should be reduced and you'll be better able to take action.

  • Smiling Releases Endorphins, Natural Pain Killers and Serotonin
Studies have shown that smiling releases endorphins, natural pain killers, and serotonin, making us feel great.  Smiling is a natural drug.

  • Smiling Lifts the Face and Makes You Look Younger
The muscles we use to smile lift the face, making a person appear younger.  Don't go for a face-lift, just try smiling your way through the day -- you'll look younger and feel better!

There's no doubt about it - smiling is something we should be extremely thankful for.  At Acreview Dental Clinic, it is our mission to give our patients something to smile about!

If you are not happy with your smile, call us right away at 250*338*9085.
We would love to help!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

How Does Your Dentist Decide What Is The BEST Treatment For YOU?

Successful Dental Treatment

Getting the Best Possible Results

Successful dental treatment.
Dentistry can do amazing things to change the way you look, feel and function. We as healthcare professionals want not only to treat you, but also to educate you about the “why” behind our recommendations. With more information, you are better equipped to make confident decisions about your health and treatment options. In addition, you are more likely to be successful in keeping your teeth vibrant and healthy.
We as dental professionals have learned, through science, research and technology, that when patients are looking to improve their health and appearance, it's essential for them to know what led to the current conditions in their mouths as those factors can have a significant impact on the success of their treatment. In order to create a foundation for future health as well as a beautiful new smile, your susceptibility to dental problems must be identified and managed as a team effort.
It is important for you and your dentist to have realistic expectations about what dentistry can and can't do. Successful results ultimately depend upon an analysis of all the factors that have made you “you,” dentally speaking. This includes your experience of tooth decay, gum disease, and bite or chewing problems. This type of analysis creates a basis for predicting successful treatment, both with and without dental care. Based on your unique diagnosis, a plan of action can be developed to correct or at least manage those factors that can interfere with the success of your treatment.
A plan for positive change should lay out what you can expect, detail how risk factors have contributed to your current condition, suggest changes that would benefit you going forward, and help determine how you will look and function after treatment.
Predictable success really is the name of the game. When your dentist considers your individual risk factors for disease, he or she is better able to advise you about dental treatment and safeguard your health. Hopefully, this understanding will allow you to change or modify behaviours so that your dental treatment will be more successful and you will achieve lasting health.

Cycle of Dental Care.
The cycle of dental care includes the identification, assessment and treatment of the causes of a patient's disease as well as future monitoring and maintenance of health.

Creating A Favourable Future

During your evaluation and treatment planning phases it is crucial to weigh factors that can increase or decrease elements of risk and affect prognosis (outcomes) in order to judge the chances of failure or success of particular treatments — before we undertake them. More simply stated, treatment decisions are favourable when risk for disease is lowered and compromised if risk cannot be controlled. You can think of it in the same way you would approach a home renovation. If you do a survey analysis of your house and find it has a weak foundation, risk for future problems goes up. You can improve success if you shore up the foundation first. And what if you are renovating a house on a fault line? Well, that is important to know beforehand as well. Sometimes we have to make decisions about how best to proceed, knowing that we cannot completely eliminate risks for future problems. Let's take a closer look at how all this relates to your dental health and aesthetic goals.

Identifying Risks To Successful Dental Treatment
In planning your dental treatment, risk level is determined from an assessment within four fundamental categories: Periodontal Risk, Biomechanical Risk, Functional Risk and Aesthetic Risk.

Periodontal Risk

Periodontal Risk.

Biomechanical Risk.

Functional Risk.

Aesthetic Risk.

This comprises threats to structures that support your teeth, particularly bone. If bone is being or has been lost, you are at greater risk for tooth loss from periodontal (gum) disease. This risk may be influenced by systemic (general) health conditions such as diabetes and habits such as smoking. Risk can be managed by changing personal behaviours and ensuring optimal oral hygiene. Periodontal risk (“peri” – around; “odont” – tooth) can also be affected by inflammatory conditions such as cardiovascular (“cardio” – heart; “vascular” – blood vessel) disease, and vice versa. These health conditions should be controlled with the help of your physician. For those who are highly susceptible to periodontal disease, the risk cannot always be completely eliminated; treatment decisions must take this into consideration.

Biomechanical Risk

This involves the structural integrity of the teeth — past tooth structure loss due to decay (cavities), acid erosion, and fracture, as well as susceptibility to decay. Certainly the higher your decay activity or rate, the higher the risk of structural (tooth) compromise. Addressing bacterial, dietary, salivary (dry mouth) and other known risk factors can help minimize the risk for future decay. If teeth are severely compromised by tooth decay, their removal and replacement with dental implants may be recommended to lower biomechanical risk.

Functional Risk

This relates to how teeth, muscles and jaw joints are functioning and wearing. This assessment involves categorizing your bite — the way the teeth fit together and how you chew. It involves assessing muscle forces generated during biting, which can affect the way the teeth wear, cause tooth looseness by affecting their attachment to the bone, and/or affect the temporomandibular (jaw) joint (TMJ). For example, if you have worn your teeth excessively it is important to figure out why your teeth have worn and look the way they do. If the problem is not addressed, the same wear patterns can result in breakage of the teeth and damage to tooth restorations (crowns or veneers, for example). Moving, reshaping, or restoring the teeth might accomplish this but the important part is to establish and address functional risk before proceeding with any treatment. For a small percentage of people functional risk cannot be eliminated, in which case an oral appliance such as an occlusal (bite) guard should be used to protect teeth during stressful periods and/or when sleeping.

Aesthetic Risk

This is really about how your teeth look and thus the risk tends to be more subjective. It is based on an assessment of “tooth display” and (ideal) tooth position in relation to your face. Aesthetic risk is higher in those who display more of their teeth and gum tissue when smiling. In these cases, any aesthetic issues affecting teeth and gums — gum recession, for example — are that much more visible and influential to your smile. Because aesthetic value is subjective, your personal opinion will be a large consideration.

Understanding Treatment as it Relates to Your Risk Assessment

Today, we have the blessings of modern technology and data analysis of your clinical situation to assess your needs and formulate a treatment plan with realistic goals in mind. Using a risk-based assessment system helps ensure an accurate diagnosis and a treatment plan with reasonable and achievable goals. We need to place emphasis on the need to prevent oral health problems from progressing so you can receive the best and longest-lasting care possible at the lowest financial, as well as psychological and emotional, cost.