Category Archives: Teeth Grinding

How To Prevent Your Teeth From Breaking

This has been a summer of hot temperatures, hail storms and the Olympics. prevent teeth from breaking

And broken teeth.

Is there an ice-chewing convention in town that I don’t know about?

Pretty much every week this summer, we’ve had folks break their teeth on “salad” or “oatmeal”, or my favorite, while “flossing” (ahem).

Okay, now I know not everyone is crunching on ice (or hard candy), but if there IS a community event of the sort, I’d appreciate some advance notice.

It goes without saying–but I’ll say it anyway–we’ll take take of you and your teeth as needed, but let me take this moment to harp on something, which is the concept of preventing such a tooth calamity.

If you know/suspect/have been told that you clench or grind your teeth, please consider getting a night guard. A custom guard from your dentist is the ideal choice, but if that’s over your budget, get one from a drugstore.

All that muscle action on your teeth can not only chip or break your teeth, but weaken the fillings and crowns you already have. Not to mention trigger jaw pain and headaches.

If you chew ice, consider quitting. Your teeth WILL eventually lose that battle. Trust me.

Switching to shaved ice is a tad better, but only a tad.

If you have a cavity you’re aware of, it will only get bigger (I have yet to hear of one that self-heals). It’s worth it to get it taken care of while it’s small, before it gets big enough to cause you pain or break your tooth (and your wallet).

Skipping x-rays, just this once? Well, okay, but know that without them we can’t see in between your teeth or what’s going on under your crowns and old fillings. You need to be comfortable with taking that risk more than your dentist.

Contrary to popular misconception, we don’t take pictures of your teeth for a secret dental Facebook society. We take them to gauge your oral health and diagnose more accurately.

Small problems caught early = easier to fix

A couple of things to keep in mind–if you’re a “cruncher”, i.e., a lover of nuts, granola, chips, etc., take it easy when you eat those things. An almond is just as tasty as 4 plopped in your mouth all together, and less risky.

See? Making a few small changes can keep you miles away from a dental emergency, a tooth ache or looking like a hillbilly.

I cannot say whether things will get better if we change; what I can say is they must change if they are to get better.
~ George C. Lichtenberg

Don’t want to be a statistic? Ask us how to get prevention for your teeth into high gear:
(214) 522-3110                www.raodentistry.com
Image source: Phaitoon

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Filed under Dental, Teeth Grinding

How To Use Your Head To Manage Headaches

Whether a migraine or the garden-variety kind, a headache can put quite a damper on your day.

Reaching for a pain killer in this situation may be well justified, but what about the next time?

Here is an increasingly novel (yet contrary to our main stream thinking) idea: how about tackling the problem at the source and reducing or eliminating it versus treating it afterwords?

Our country’s increasing drug dependence is convenient, but taking a “big picture” preventive approach to health usually leads to more effective, long-term results which cost less than a long list of medications.

Here are some ways to manage your headache by focusing on preventing the next attack:

1. Get plenty of sleep

Constant lack of sleep is going to catch up with you and lower not only your productivity, but also your peace of mind and frequency of headaches. This is simple to fix by changing up your daily routine to allow enough sleep at night.

Conditions such as insomnia and sleep apnea increase your headache risk as well, and may require a chat with your doctor.

2. Food triggers

Certain foods like chocolate, cheese and peanut butter can trigger migraines. Another trigger is hunger, as is not drinking enough water.

Know what your food triggers are and avoid them. Also, be sure to carry snacks with you so hunger doesn’t set one off, and drink plenty of water on a daily basis. Moderate amounts of caffeine can often help ease headaches after onset.

3. Quit/curb smoking

Smoking, or inhaling second-hand smoke, can trigger headaches. Yet another reason to add to the list to quit/curb smoking, or avoid areas of second-hand smoke.

4. Slim down

Need another reason to lose those extra pounds? Studies suggest links between obesity and more frequent and severe headaches. Time to get your work-out on.

5. Teeth clenching/grinding

Taking your stress out on your teeth? Teeth clenching and/or grinding put your facial muscles to hard work and can trigger headaches or even migraines.

A night guard provided by your dentist is a simple and conservative solution.

6. Relax

Know anyone without stress? I sure don’t. But letting it get out of control has many negative effects on your body, and headaches is just one of them.

Making time for rest and relaxation using techniques including yoga, meditation and deep breathing can ease an aching head and prevent future onsets.

Most of these don’t require anything more than an open mind and small (at least to start) modifications to your current lifestyle. But as in most cases, small changes can add up to huge rewards over time.

Next time you’re tempted to down a whole bottle of pills to ease your headache….please don’t! Use that moment to fuel your resolve to make some simple changes to reduce more headaches in the future.

Are you ready to try preventing future headaches?

(214) 522-3110            www.raodentistry.com

Image source: La Bioguia

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Filed under Health, Smoking, Teeth Grinding, Wellness

7 Dental Questions You Need Never Ask Again

…..because here are the answers:Radio dial

Q. 1. If my cap comes off, can I use superglue to put it back on?

A. No.
 

Q. 2. I love to chew ice. That’s not so bad for my teeth, is it?

A. No. It’s worse.
 

Q. 3. I take aspirin when my head hurts. Can I stick an aspirin near my tooth if it hurts?

A. Hmmm….no.
 

Q. 4. I’m a big dude and a manly man. It’s cool that I open beer bottles with my macho teeth?

A. Not really, no.
 

Q. 5. I grind my teeth. A lot. My teeth can take it for years without any problems, right?

A. Err…..no.
 

Q. 6. I’m pregnant! Can I skip my dental cleaning?

A. For the baby’s sake….no!
 

Q. 7. Taking care of teeth is too much work. Might as well take ’em all out. False teeth are better anyway, right?

A. That would be a HELL NO.
 

Need your teeth to outlast you? It’s never too late to start taking care of them so they will. Ask us how. Call or email us:

(214) 522-3110        www.raodentistry.com

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Filed under Health, Oral Health, Pregnancy, Teeth Grinding, Wellness

Are You Over-Stressed From Over-Work?

Do you have stress in your life?

The last thing you want after a stressful day is a hectic night (no, not that).

But that’s exactly what millions end up doing; they follow a hard-working day by a hard-working night; by clenching or grinding their teeth all night and waking up with a sore jaw, or even pain.

Restful? I think not.

Not only can that be uncomfortable, but long-term clenching on grinding (“bruxism”) can wear your teeth down as steadily as Tiger Woods’ reputation. This makes them more susceptible to chipping and breaking. Plus, shorter teeth can make you look older prematurely. Who wants that?

Contrary to popular perception, just because your significant other doesn’t hear you grind your teeth doesn’t mean it’s not happening.

The most common trigger? Stress. Surprise, surprise.

While most of us may go through sporadic spurts shorter than a Hollywood marriage, many suffer from chronic jaw pain or migraines as a long-term consequence of these habits. And this constant pressure can traumatize your teeth, often leading to chronic sensitivity or root canals.

But not everyone is aware if they are even doing this. So how do you find out?

There is a list of things we discuss with you at your check up appointment if we suspect or see any signs of excessive wear. Or if your teeth are breaking faster than Anthony Weiner can send a text.

If you are diagnosed with clenching/grinding your teeth, a night guard is the simplest, most non-invasive and cost-effective solution. Worn primarily at night, a good one covers your teeth and provides enough support to absorb the pounding pressure. While the drug store kind can serve you for a short time, a custom guard made by your dentist is the way to go for long-term use or if you are a heavy bruxer/clencher.

Need some real life examples? Here is our patient, Darlene, who (in less than 3 minutes) can tell you how much a night guard helped her:

 

Questions? Before you ask, see that box on the upper right? Enter your email and subscribe, so you can get all this great info delivered right to your inbox!

Call us at (214) 522-3110 or email us directly from our website at www.raodentistry.com.  As always, comments are welcome!

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Filed under Dental Product, Teeth Grinding