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Gear up for Back-to-School Sports with Mouth Guards
Gear up for Back-to-School Sports with Mouth Guards

Gear up for Back-to-School Sports with Mouth Guards

It’s back-to-school time and that means kids everywhere will be participating in sports. It’s time for football, soccer, volleyball, and all sorts of sports teams to get back in shape. That not only means conditioning your body, but also getting all the right gear. One item that you don’t want to forget is a mouth guard to protect yourself from mouth and facial injuries.

Dentists recommend mouth guards for participants in both high-impact sports and individual sports. Team sports often resulting in mouth injuries include football, basketball, baseball, softball, soccer, and hockey. Individual sports that carry high risks include cycling, gymnastics, skateboarding, martial arts, and rollerblading.

Mouth guards are worn to protect the mouth from a variety of possible injuries. They may be minor like a chipped or cracked tooth, or cuts from biting the inside of your mouth. Worse injuries can occur like jaw fractures, and athletes might experience tooth loss or nerve damage. Fractures can cause difficulty breathing, swallowing, eating, or speaking.

Dentists suggest that many sports injuries can be avoided by wearing a mouth guard, and they are available for athletes of all skill sets and ages. They are available in most sporting good stores, or you can opt to have customized mouth guards created by your dentist. Mouth guards are even available in a wide variety of colors, so athletes can choose them to coordinate with their school colors. They are also useful for people who wear traditional braces or Invisalign retainers.

Because many sports can be risky, there’s no reason to ignore the danger to your mouth. Wear a mouth guard to protect your smile throughout the season.

If you live in the Morehead City area contact us today

What Your Teeth Say About Your Health

What Your Teeth Say About Your Health

Your body is a little bit like a puzzle. It gives you clues to help you figure out what’s going on within your body. Did you know your mouth can give you hints about things that may be happening elsewhere in your body? Here’s a list of some of the signs your mouth can give you to pay attention to certain other aspects of your health.

Worn teeth and headache

If your teeth are showing extensive wear, you may be grinding your teeth. This would be even a stronger possibility if you’re also experiencing regular headaches, which can be caused by the muscle tension related to teeth grinding. This condition also indicates that you are likely under too much stress, and that you are unconsciously coping with it by grinding your teeth.

Gums covering teeth

If your gums begin to grow over your teeth and you are on medication, it may mean that your medication is at fault. Some medicines can cause your gums to overgrow, and the dosage needs to be adjusted.

Mouth sores

An open sore in your mouth that doesn’t go away in a couple of weeks can be an indicator of oral cancer. Numbness and unexplained bleeding in your mouth are other signs. Smokers and people over age 60 are at the most risk, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t affect others too. See your dentist to make sure all is okay.

Cracked teeth

If your teeth begin to crack or wear extensively, you may have gastroesophogeal reflux disease (GERD). It’s a digestive disease that allows stomach acid to flow back into your food pipe and mouth. This acid can cause your teeth to deteriorate. Additional signs of GERD are acid reflux, heartburn, and dry mouth.

Unclean dentures

If you wear dentures, make sure you remove and clean them regularly. Inhaling food debris from your dentures that makes its way to your lungs can lead to pneumonia.

Our dental office is located in Morehead City

Replace Metal Fillings with Composite Resin Restorations

Replace Metal Fillings with Composite Resin Restorations

For many years, dentists removed cavities and filled them with metal amalgams. Traditional metal fillings are less expensive and were often the first choice for fixing damaged teeth. Recently, composite resin fillings have become the top method for restoring smiles. Ultimately, the decision rests with the patient; however, many dentists have moved to placing only composite fillings.

Silver fillings actually weaken the natural tooth structure, although they do repair the decayed area. As well, metal fillings contain mercury, which can become toxic in large doses. Metal fillings can expand, contract, or leak from wear over time. In many cases, they also darken with age.

Tinted to match natural teeth, composite resin fillings preserve your bright, white image. With composite resin fillings, less tooth area needs to be removed, which keeps as much of your original tooth in tact as possible. Because tooth-colored fillings actually bond to the tooth, you don’t have to worry about these restorations changing shape or cracking.

To place a composite restoration, your dentist will clean out the decay and prepare the tooth. Then, the doctor will fill the area with the composite material. With a special curing light, your dentist hardens the filling and polishes the tooth.

When you have metal fillings, check with your dentist and request an evaluation of their stability. Some people choose to replace amalgam fillings because of the way they look. If your old fillings develop additional decay or fracture, you will need to have the restorations repaired in order to restore the tooth.

Schedule a dental cleaning appointment today at our Morehead City dentists office.

I Can’t Give Up my Coffee!!

I Can’t Give Up my Coffee!!

You’ve probably seen what coffee can do to a cup. Those brown stains that you see left on your cup are also sticking to your teeth. Coffee is especially hard on your teeth due to an ingredient called tannic acid, which gets into the grooves and pits of your tooth enamel and can stain it brown. Certainly the ideal way to stop the staining is to quit drinking the java, but that’s an unrealistic solution for many people. So what else can you do to save your pearly whites?

Drink smart

First, try and reduce the amount of coffee you drink. If you drink a lot of coffee, even cutting out one cup a day can lessen the dark stains on your teeth. Another suggestion is to drink your coffee in one or two sittings instead of sipping it all day long. Also, try lowering the temperature of your coffee. The hotter the coffee is, the more easily it can stain your teeth. Just letting it cool a couple of degrees can make a difference to your teeth.

Rinse

After every cup of coffee you drink, rinse your mouth with room-temperature water. This will remove some of the staining elements before they have a chance to set in. The water also helps neutralize acids in your mouth, which will lower the bacteria in your mouth that can lead to cavities.

Use a straw

If you like iced coffee or tea, drink it with a straw so that the dark beverage doesn’t directly contact your front lower and upper teeth. Using a straw reduces your teeth’s exposure to liquids that can stain.

Whiten your teeth

Ask your dentist about professional whitening methods, as well as products you can try at home. There are even some brands of whitening toothpaste made especially for coffee drinkers.

Practice good hygiene

Brush your teeth several times a day, especially after drinking coffee. Flossing daily also helps prevent stains, and is important if you add sugar or cream to your cup of joe. See your dentist twice a year for professional cleanings, which can do a better job of removing stains and restoring your smile.

We look forward to seeing you in our Morehead City dental office

Dental Health and Pregnancy

Dental Health and Pregnancy

Waiting for the birth of a baby is an exciting time for any woman. Your body changes in many ways, including in your mouth. Though picking out names and nursery colors is important, taking proper care of your teeth and gums before, during, and after pregnancy will keep your oral health on track. These tips can help you keep your vibrant smile in top shape.

Before Pregnancy
While you are trying to conceive, schedule an appointment with your dentist. At this visit, the dental team can clean your teeth, examine your mouth, and address any issues before you have a baby on the way. Because x-rays are not recommended during pregnancy, this appointment is a good time to have those taken as well.

During Pregnancy
If you are pregnant make sure to tell your dentist right away. Procedures like cosmetic enhancements and X-rays should be avoided during pregnancy. Checkups are very important when you are pregnant, so don’t skip your visit. As a precaution, you should wait until the second trimester to see your dentist.

While your pregnancy progresses, watch for signs of pregnancy gingivitis, which usually involves tenderness, bleeding, or swollen gums. Talk with your dentist if these symptoms appear. Practicing good oral care and eating right will help minimize any impact on your oral health.

After Pregnancy
When you feel up to it, visit your dentist after delivery for a full evaluation of your oral health. Your dental provider can work out a detailed plan to address any issues from the pregnancy and renew your smile.

If you need a dentist in Morehead City contact us today

Your Guide to Common Dental Questions

Your Guide to Common Dental Questions

It’s easy to remember the basics about dental health. Most people know that they need to brush twice a day, floss often, and schedule checkups every six months. The following questions and answers offer important information about your oral health.

How does the dentist find a cavity?
Although some practices now have technology to aid in cavity detection, many dentists check the old-fashioned way. During your exam, the dentist uses a metal instrument to touch the surface of your teeth. If the tooth feels soft, that may indicate the presence of tooth decay.

What’s the difference between amalgam and composite fillings?
For years, metal filling were the choice for repairing teeth damaged by cavities. Over time, amalgam fillings can darken as well as change shape, which can cause them to leak. Now, composite fillings are often used instead. These tooth-colored restorations keep your smile looking good, and they allow for more conservative therapy.

Does teeth whitening work?
If you want a stunning smile, professional teeth whitening can give you beautiful results in many cases. For certain types of discolorations, like tetracycline staining, teeth bleaching may not work, but you could consider other options like porcelain veneers.

Can an adults straighten their teeth?
Absolutely. There is no age limit on a vibrant smile and about 25 percent of orthodontic patients are over 18 years of age. Modern treatment options such as Invisalign clear aligners allow adults to straighten teeth without the embarrassment or discomfort of metal braces.

Is an electronic toothbrush better than a manual toothbrush?
Most dentists agree that the best toothbrush is the one that encourages you to brush. Electronic brushes have benefits including ease of use and more thorough coverage. With manual brushes, they are inexpensive and can be easily replaced/

We look forward to seeing you in our Morehead City dental office

Comprehensive Dental Center

Dr. Jack T. Winchester
3705 Symi Circle
Morehead City, NC 28557
252-247-3510

Our practice is conveniently located in Morehead City, NC

Our Hours
Monday: 8:30 am – 5:30 pm
Tuesday: 8:30 am – 5:30 pm
Wednesday: 8:30 am – 5:30 pm
Thursday: 8:30 am – 5:30 pm
Friday: Closed

Directions to our office