Understanding Dental Pain

Understanding Dental Pain

Does your tooth ever ache? Does your mouth ever hurt? At the Centre Dentaire LaSalle we understand that oral pain is no fun. But if you’ve ever wondered why your mouth hurts, here are some explanations of the most common types of dental pain.

My tooth hurts when I eat/drink something hot or cold. Tooth sensitivity can be caused by tooth decay (dental cavity), worn tooth enamel, a cracked tooth, an exposed root, or even gum disease.

My tooth hurts when I eat or bite down. When a tooth hurts while eating, it can be a sign of tooth decay or a cracked/fractured tooth.

My tooth is throbbing. Intense, throbbing pain can indicate that your tooth is infected. If you are experiencing this pain with swelling, seek the attention of a dentist immediately. Your dentist can properly treat the infection before it spreads to other parts of your mouth or body.

My teeth are fine, but my jaw hurts. Jaw pain can be a symptom of teeth clenching or grinding at night, impacted wisdom teeth, or temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD).

Oral pain is not always crystal clear. Sometimes it can feel like a tooth is hurting in one place, but the problem is actually a couple teeth away. This type of referred pain can travel up or down the same side of the jaw.

Our dental team can help identify and treat the source of your pain. It is important to discuss any dental pain or discomfort with your dentist or hygienist. Even if it doesn’t seem like a big problem, different types of pain can be a signal of other health problems. For instance, if you have a history of angina or heart problems, pain on the left side of your mouth, jaw, or neck can be a sign of a heart attack. Women are more likely to experience this sort of signalled pain.

If you are experiencing oral pain or have any questions about it, please contact our office at (514) 364-3366 or click here to visit our website. Also be sure to visit our Facebook page to keep up with information that affect your dental health and wellness.

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Are You Afraid of the Dentist?

afraid of the dentist

Do you worry about dental appointments? Does the sound of a drill make you flinch? If so, you’re not alone. Millions of people avoid the dentist every year because of traumatic childhood experiences, pain as adults, or negative TV/movie stereotypes.

To eliminate some of your fear, we have six steps to help you overcome any dental anxiety before visiting Centre Dentaire LaSalle.

> Step 1 – What Are You Afraid Of?
Is it the sounds? The equipment? An experience? Write down all of your fears, one by one.

> Step 2 – Don’t Wait
The more frequently you visit the dentist, the less dental work your mouth will need. Having regular dental appointments helps prevent many, if not most, dental problems.

> Step 3 – Bring a Distraction
Distracting your mind or listening to an iPod during your appointment is a great idea. Just close your eyes and get lost in the music.

> Step 4 – Relax
Inhale slowly, count to five, and then exhale slowly. Repeat this slow breathing until you feel more relaxed. It will help you feel more at ease during your visit.

> Step 5 – Ask
Before any procedure, ask our dental team any question. We are here to make your dental care experience as comfortable as possible. If you are ever concerned about something, just ask.

> Step 6 – We Are Here to Help
As health care professionals, we want to help improve your oral and overall health, and we will never judge you or the state of your mouth. Our dental team will do everything we can to ensure you have a comfortable, pain-free experience.

If you have have any questions or if you experience any dental fears, please contact our office at (514) 364-3366 or click here to visit our website. Also, be sure to visit our Facebook page to keep up with information that affect your dental health and wellness.

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Tooth Enamel and Tooth Decay

Woman smile - no tooth decay on her tooth enamelWhile tooth enamel is the body’s hardest substance, it’s not invincible. Certain foods/drinks, medications, acid reflux, and even oral bacteria can cause tooth decay and the overall thinning of the tooth’s surface.

Here are some simple ways to protect your teeth:

> Avoid carbonated beverages, over time they can eat away at your teeth.

> Don’t sip drinks through a straw. When you do, it increases the liquid’s exposure to your teeth and the potential damage to your teeth.

> Drink water after finishing an acidic drink, such as juice, wine, or carbonated beverages.  Washing away the acid with water, helps to keep your teeth healthy and strong.

> After drinking anything other than water, wait an hour before brushing your teeth. This gives your tooth’s enamel the time to remineralize.

> Choose a soft bristled toothbrush, it removes plaque without damaging your tooth enamel.

If you have any questions about your teeth or your oral health, please contact our office at (514) 364-3366 or click here to visit our website. Also, be sure to visit our Facebook page to keep up with information that affect your dental health and wellness.

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Healthy Eating for Your Teeth

Woman deciding to eat healthy for her teeth

With summer just around the corner, days are getting longer and busier. Packing nutrient-rich foods, helps strengthen yours and your children’s oral health, making everyone less susceptible to tooth decay.

Here are some tooth healthy foods that you can enjoy not only all summer, but all year round:

Dairy

Cheese, yogurt, and milk all contain calcium, which helps strengthen tooth enamel. When making lunches/snacks with cheese, try using aged cheddar, swiss, or monterey jack. These cheeses have been found to protect teeth from decay.

Fruits and Vegetables

It is no surprise that fruits and vegetables are good sources of vitamins. Citrus fruits contain vitamin C, important for healthy gums. While carrots and dried apricots contain vitamin A, which help build strong teeth.

Protein

Protein-rich foods, including meat, poultry, and fish, are good sources of phosphorous, a necessary mineral for tooth development. Nuts are a good alternative protein, they are rich in magnesium and phosphorous, which is optimal for oral health.

When packing lunches and snacks, try to avoid packing sodas, sports drinks, and sweetened fruit juices. These drinks are high in sugar and acid, which can contribute to tooth decay and obesity. Instead, opt for fluoridated water, milk, or pure fruit juice.

Introducing healthy eating habits at a young age is important for oral health and development. Health eating habits, hygiene habits, and maintaing regular dental appointments, are the building blocks for a lifetime of oral and overall health.

If you have any questions about oral health or tooth healthy foods, please contact our office at (514) 364-3366 or click here to visit our website. Also, be sure to visit our Facebook page to keep up with information that affect your dental health and wellness.

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How to Care for Your Baby’s Teeth

steps to care for baby's teeth

In the first few months, you fall in love with your baby’s sweet gummy smile. Underneath those gums, your child already has the beginnings of their baby and adult teeth. To help keep your baby’s teeth healthy throughout childhood and adulthood, here are some simple steps.

Step 1 – Clean Your Child’s Teeth and Gums:
Even before your infant’s teeth come in, start wiping the gums with a damp cloth, gauze, or infant toothbrush. As soon as the teeth begin to erupt, you should be brushing your child’s teeth twice a day.

Step 2 – Avoid Bedtime Bottles:
Try not to give your baby a bottle at bedtime. If your child needs something comforting, try a bottle filled with water, not sugary drinks.

Step 3 – Avoid Sugary Pacifiers:
Do not dip your child’s pacifiers in anything sweet, even honey. Only use clean, orthodontic pacifiers, which are actually designed for the shape of your child’s mouth.

Step 4 – Minimize Teething Pain:
When teeth begin to come in, your child may experience some pain. Teething rings can be helpful. You can also help by rubbing your baby’s gums with a clean finger.

Step 5 – Visit the Dentist:
While planning your child’s first birthday party, remember to book their first dental appointment. At this appointment, we will review proper brushing technique and how to avoid potential issues. Many parents are unaware of dental issues until they become more serious. And your child will learn that going to the dentist is important for oral health.

If you have any questions about your child’s teeth or notice anything unusual, please contact our office at (514) 364-3366 or click here to visit our website. Also, be sure to visit our Facebook page to keep up with information that affect your dental health and wellness.

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Smoking and Your Teeth

Woman Smoking in the park

It is no surprise that smoking is bad for your health (and the health of those around you). Smoking can negatively impact your oral health in many ways. Here are some ways that smoking affects your teeth:

> Staining: Over time, tobacco can seep into the pores of your tooth enamel and darken the colour of your teeth. Regular dental cleanings and professional whitening can help with the discolouration, but it is possible that neither approach will completely remove the deep stains.

> Oral Cancer: Approximately 90% of those with oral cancer have used tobacco. If you are a tobacco consumer, regular dental appointments can play a vital role in early oral cancer detection. Our dental team does routine oral cancer screenings at every dental cleaning appointment.

> Gum Disease: Smoking damages the mouth and gums, increasing your likelihood of experiencing gum disease. If you smoke, proper brushing and flossing is vital to help maintain the health of your teeth and gums.

> Sensitive Teeth: There is more bacteria in your mouth when you smoke, causing plaque to develop more easily. This can lead to inflamed gums and sensitive teeth.

> Bad Breath: Mouth washes and oral sprays cannot fully remove the lingering odour of smoking.

> Lower Immunity: Smoking lowers your body’s ability to fight infection. If you get gingivitis or gum disease, it will be harder for your body to recover. Also, if you require oral surgery, it will take longer for your mouth to heal. Smoking after surgery may even cause infection.

Your body can recover from the negative affects of smoking. When you quit smoking, your chances of oral health problems greatly decrease. Recent studies found that after eleven years, a former smokers’ likelihood of experiencing gum disease is similar to those who have never smoked.

Even cutting down the amount of smoking can significantly improve your oral health. Another study found that when people reduced their smoking habit by half, they also halved their likelihood of experiencing gum disease.

We understand that quitting smoking can be difficult. If you are an occasional, frequent, or former smoker, we can help improve your oral health. Regular visits to the dentist as well as daily brushing and flossing can give you a healthier, more beautiful smile.

If you have any questions about your oral health and the affects of smoking on your teeth, please contact our office at (514) 364-3366 or click here to visit our website. Also, be sure to visit our Facebook page to keep up with information that affect your dental health and wellness.

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Fluoride and Toothpaste

Man using fluoride toothpaste

Recently one of our patients’ asked, “Should I switch to a natural toothpaste?” Just because something, like toothpaste, has the word “natural” in it, doesn’t make it better. In fact, in some cases, it can be harmful to your oral and overall health.

While all toothpastes will assist your toothbrush in cleaning your mouth, some of them do a much better job than others. There are many different toothpastes on the market. Some are advertised as natural, breath-freshening, anti-cavity, or whitening.

The most important guideline when looking for a toothpaste is to find one that contains fluoride. Fluoride is one of the most important elements in maintaining a healthy mouth. It helps prevent cavities, gum disease, and tooth decay. In fact, regularly drinking fluoridated water and using toothpaste with fluoride helps protect your teeth from cavities and lowers your long-term dental care costs.

Most toothpastes contain fluoride, but many of the “natural” ones do not. If you are using toothpaste without fluoride, you may increase your chances of developing cavities and other dental health concerns. Protect your oral health. When you find a toothpaste that you enjoy, ensure that it has fluoride.

If you have any questions about toothpaste, fluoride, or your oral health, please contact our office at (514) 364-3366 or click here to visit our website. Also, be sure to visit our Facebook page to keep up with information that affect your dental health and wellness.

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Does My Breath Smell?

does my breath smell

If you’ve ever wondered “Does my breath smell?” you are not alone. Bad breath (clinically known as halitosis) is very common. It is the third most common reason people seek dental assistance.

There are many causes of bad breath, here is our top ten most common reasons:

#1 Leftover Food Particles: For most, bad breath is caused by food particles being trapped in the mouth. If not properly removed, by brushing and flossing, these food particles become a breeding ground for bad breath causing bacteria.

#2 Certain Foods: Foods, such as garlic and onions, can affect your breath. These foods are absorbed into the bloodstream and the lungs, causing a foul smell when you breath and speak. Fortunately, this type of bad breath is only temporary.

#3 Poor Oral Health: Oral hygiene is key to fresh breath. Brushing and flossing daily as well as regular visits to the dentist/hygienist help keep your mouth healthy and your breath fresh.

#4 Gum Disease: Gum disease (periodontal disease) is caused by plaque, a sticky, colourless film that constantly forms on your teeth. If plaque is not removed properly with daily brushing and flossing, it can build up, infecting your teeth, gums, and eventually the bone. The bacteria associated with gum disease leaves you with foul smelling breath.

#5 Tobacco/Alcohol Consumption: Tobacco can cause your breath, skin, and clothing to smell. While alcohol can cause digestive problems and/or dry out your mouth, both of which can cause bad breath.

#6 Dentures: Food particles that are not properly brushed or cleaned away can cause your dentures and mouth to smell.

#7 Dry Mouth: When your mouth is dry, the saliva is not able to clean your mouth and control the bad breath causing bacteria.

#8 Medications: Bad breath, dry mouth, and taste disorders are all common side effects to many of today’s medications.

#9 Obesity: Studies show that the more overweight you are, the more likely your breath will smell.

#10 Mouth Breathing: Breathing through your mouth, instead of your nose, can cause bad breath. Mouth breathing can dry out your mouth, leaving it susceptible to bad breath causing bacteria.

We’re here to help keep your breath fresh. At regular dentist appointments, we screen for faulty restorations, overhanding fillings, and faulty crowns, all of which can trap food in the mouth and cause bad breath. Also remember to brush, floss, and rinse your mouth after every meal.

If you decide to use mouthwash, look for one that is alcohol free. If your mouthwash is made with alcohol, it will only temporarily freshen your breath because alcohol actually dehydrates your mouth.

If you have any questions or concerns about your breath or dental health, please contact our office at (514) 364-3366 or click here to visit our website. Also, be sure to visit our Facebook page to keep up with information that affect your dental health and wellness.

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‘Tis the Season for a Sparkling, White Smile!

Winter Smile

It may be the most wonderful time of year, but if you’re hiding your smile and unhappy with your teeth, you may be missing some of this joyful season.

Don’t waste another moment wishing your smile was different, the dental team at Centre Dentaire LaSalle can give you the beautiful smile you’ve always wanted.

Veneers can improve the appearance of your teeth, protect them from damage, and even create a straighter smile. Veneers are thin layers of porcelain material, individually crafted and applied to the front of your tooth’s surface.

With precise colour-matching and natural enamel-like quality, veneers are usually undetectable to the human eye. In fact, you have probably admired other people’s teeth without even realizing that they were veneers.

For a number of common cosmetic imperfections, veneers are a popular option. They can provide a quick, attractive, long-lasting, and pain-free solution. In some cases, veneers can even be used when conventional teeth whitening methods are not effective.

If you have any questions about dental veneers or cosmetic dentistry, please contact our office at (514) 364-3366 or click here to visit our website. Also, be sure to visit our Facebook page to keep up with information that affect your dental health and wellness.

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Teeth Grinding and Children

children smiling and teeth grinding

Grind, grind, grind! If this sounds familiar, you’re living with a teeth grinder.

Teeth grinding, or bruxism, is not only common in adults, it is common in children too. In fact, three out of ten kids clench or grind their teeth at night. This can be a response to jaw growth, losing teeth, stress, or other discomforts, such as infections or allergies.

Grinding can cause irreversible damage to their teeth – leaving them chipped, worn down, or loose. Other symptoms of grinding include:

> Tightness or pain in the jaw

> Sensitive teeth

> Headache, earache, or facial pain

Typically, children outgrow this nightly habit. Grinding and clenching is usually a passing phenomena that most children stop doing by their teen years.

If you can concerned that you or your child is grinding or clenching at night, please contact our office at (514) 364-3366 or click here to visit our website. Also, be sure to visit our Facebook page to keep up with information that affect your dental health and wellness.

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