While they may be temporary, your child's teeth are still important. Early childhood caries (also known as baby bottle tooth decay) most often occur in the upper front teeth. Numerous different factors can cause tooth decay, however, one of the most common in babies is frequent and prolonged exposure of the teeth to sugary drinks. This type of tooth decay can occur when a bottle is used as a pacifier for a baby, or when the child is put to sleep with it. In those scenarios, the bottle is left in the child's mouth for a long time, allowing sugars to cling to the teeth and promote the growth of bacteria.
 
Fortunately, there are a number of simple things that can be done to prevent baby bottle tooth decay. Here are some of the most important ones:

  • Wipe the child’s gums with a clean gauze pad after each feeding.

  • When your child’s first tooth comes in, begin gentle brushing using a child size toothbrush.

  • Use  roughly a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste from ages three to six.

  • Place only milk, formula, or breastmilk in bottles. Try to avoid filling it with sugar filled juices and soft drinks.

  • If the child uses a pacifier, always use a clean one. Don’t dip it in any honey or sugar.

  • Try to encourage drinking from a cup.

 
By following the above steps, your child will have a much lower chance of tooth decay. As recommended by the Canadian Dental Association, you should schedule an appointment at our office for your child by the time they are 1 year old. We have dentists with expertise in treating infants. If you have any questions or would like to book an appointment, feel free to contact us here at the Rideau Dental Center by calling 613-230-7475.

What Are Panoramic Dental X-Rays

August 29, 2016 | Posted Education

Panoramic dental x-rays are the preferred type of x-ray when dentists need to capture the entire mouth in one image. They are commonly performed by dentists and oral surgeons to plan for braces, dentures, extractions and implants. Panoramic x-rays take images in 2-D, and capture the teeth, upper and lower jaws, and surrounding tissue. Imaging with x-ray exposes part of the body to a small dose of ionizing radiation to produce the image.
 
Common uses for panoramic x-rays over conventional intraoral x-rays are planning for procedures, and revealing dental problems such as advanced periodontal disease, jaw tumors and oral cancer, impacted teeth (wisdom teeth), jaw disorders, and sinusitis.
 
Preparing for a panoramic x-ray is very simple. You will be asked to wear a lead apron to protect the rest of your body from any radiation exposure, and you will be asked to remove any jewellery, eyeglasses, and other metal objects that are in the region being imaged. It’s very important that women always inform their dentist or oral surgeon if there is a possibility of them being pregnant. Many tests aren’t performed during pregnancy to protect the fetus from any radiation. If the x-ray is necessary, extra precautions can be made to minimize the radiation exposure to the baby.
 
If you have any further questions, or would like to ask about receiving a panoramic x-ray yourself, feel free to contact us here at the Rideau Dental Centre by calling 613-230-7475.
 

Thumb sucking is a very natural reflex for children. Sucking on thumbs, fingers, pacifiers and other objects can often make babies feel happy and secure, and often helps them fall asleep. When permanent teeth come in, sucking can cause problems with the alignment of the teeth and the growth of the mouth. Pacifiers can affect the teeth in the same ways that sucking on fingers do, but they are often an easier habit for children to break.
 
Intensity is the determining factor of whether or not sucking will cause dental problems. If children passively rest their thumb or pacifier in their mouth, problems are much less likely to arise when compared to children who vigorously suck on their thumbs. Overly aggressive sucking can not only cause problems with permanent teeth, but even primary (baby) teeth.
 
Children usually stop sucking their thumbs between the ages of two and four, or by the time their permanent teeth begin to come in. If your child does not stop sucking their thumbs, you should try to praise the child for not sucking. Sucking is often associated with when a child feels insecure, so it’s recommended to try to eliminate any anxiety by providing comfort to your child.
 
If you notice a change in child's teeth, or are concerned about their sucking habits, you should consult your dentist. If you have any further questions, do not hesitate to contact us here at the Rideau Dental Centre by calling 613-230-7475.
 

Oral Health Tips For Teenagers

August 02, 2016 | Posted Education

The most common chronic disease in people from ages six to nineteen is tooth decay. There’s a number of small changes you can make in your daily routine to ensure you maintain healthy teeth during your lifetime. Here’s a few of them:

  • Play it safe - Contact sports are a leading cause of oral injuries in teenagers, but can easily be prevented with the use of mouthguards.

  • Skip the soda - Soft drinks are acidic and have very high sugar content, which can erode tooth enamel and cause cavities. If cutting soda out of your diet completely isn’t an option, try drinking it using a straw to minimize the contact that the liquid has with the teeth, and rinse your mouth with water when you are finished drinking.

  • Avoid oral piercings - Tongue and other oral piercings can easily fracture tooth enamel, which can lead to requiring a filling or even root canal depending on the depth of the fracture. Oral piercings also often cause infections, which can cause parts of the mouth to swell and interfere with breathing.

 
Like adults, teenagers should visit their dentist twice a year. Regular visits will help ensure a healthy smile and that any problems are caught early on. If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact us here at the Rideau Dental Centre by calling 613-230-7475!

What Is A Root Canal?

July 18, 2016 | Posted Education

Root canals are necessary when the tooth’s pulp, which is composed of nerves and blood vessels, becomes infected or damaged. During the root canal procedure, the pulp is removed, and the inside of the tooth is cleaned and sealed. Common causes of pulp damage include cracked teeth, deep cavities, or another type of injury to the tooth. After the pulp becomes dead or infected and is left untreated, pus can build up causing pain.
 
The root canal procedure is made up of several steps:

  • First, an opening is made through the crown of a molar or the back of a front tooth.

  • Next, the damaged or infected pulp is removed, and the pulp chamber is cleaned.

  • After cleaning the chamber, it is permanently filled with a rubber compound called gutta-percha.

  • Finally, a crown is usually placed over the tooth to protect it and restore it.

 
With proper care, root canals can last your entire life. The tooth can still decay, so it's important to practice good oral hygiene. If you have any questions, or need a root canal yourself, contact us here at the Rideau Dental Centre by calling 613-230-7475.

Sometimes, you may notice one or more of your teeth are feeling sensitive when you eat or drink something hot, cold, sweet, or sour. This sensitivity may be painful, often feeling like a sharp and sudden pain deep into your tooth. Typically, sensitive teeth are caused by your gums being pulled back and exposing the surface beneath them. This surface is called dentin, and is what makes up the inner parts and roots of the tooth. When this surface is exposed, it allows hot, cold, sweet, and sour foods to directly reach the nerves of your tooth, causing sharp pain. Other possible causes of tooth sensitivity include wear and tear due to brushing too hard, tooth decay, teeth grinding, and gum disease.
 
There are a number of different things you can do to reduce and control tooth sensitivity. First, make sure to brush and floss regularly using proper brushing and flossing techniques. Second, use a toothpaste made for sensitive teeth. Regular use of a toothpaste made for sensitive teeth should make them less sensitive. Third, watch what you eat, as large amounts acidic food and drink can cause tooth sensitivity. If the sensitivity continues, make sure you talk to your dentist about it. There are a few different things that your dentist can do to help reduce tooth sensitivity, such as applying white fillings to cover exposed root surfaces, applying fluoride varnishes to root surfaces, or applying dentin sealers.
 
If you have sensitive teeth and would like to book an appointment with a dentist, or have any other questions, feel free to contact us at Rideau Dental Centre by calling 613-230-7475.
 

What Are Wisdom Teeth?

June 20, 2016 | Posted Education

Wisdom teeth are the final set of molars that most people get during their late teens to early twenties. For some people, wisdom teeth come in properly aligned and can be a great addition to the mouth, but most of the time they come in unaligned and need to be removed. When wisdom teeth come in unaligned, they may be positioned horizontally, angled away or towards the second molars, or be angled inward or outward. Unaligned wisdom teeth can cause a number of issues such as damaging adjacent teeth, the jawbone, and nerves around the mouth.
 
To check if you have wisdom teeth, once every few visits your dentist will take an x-ray to check if the teeth are present and see their alignment. Depending on the state of your wisdom teeth, your dentist may recommend that they are extracted. Typically, the earlier the extraction the better, as extractions tend to become more painful and complicated as the bone and tooth roots continue to develop.
 
If it is determined that your wisdom teeth are ready for extraction, your dentist or oral surgeon will prepare you for your surgery and explain to you exactly what will happen. Proper sedation will be used depending on the difficulty of your specific surgery. The surgery itself should be fairly comfortable and not too painful due to the anesthetic your dentist or oral surgeon will use. After the surgery when the anesthetic wears off, the amount of pain one experiences depends on the exact type of extraction that had to be used. After a few days, you should be pretty much fully healed.
 
Here at the Rideau Dental Centre we have the expertise to provide wisdom teeth extraction should that be recommended during your assessment. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us by calling 613-230-7475!
 

You often hear about the importance of brushing your teeth and flossing, but what about your tongue? Proper tongue care is very important but often overlooked. Your tongue is the perfect place for bacteria to thrive, and if it’s not properly cleaned, it can cause bad breath and poor oral hygiene.
 
Cleaning your tongue can be extremely simple, yet very rewarding. Each time you brush your teeth, try to remember to clean your tongue as well. To clean your tongue, you can either brush it with your toothbrush, or use a tongue scraper. If you are using a toothbrush, gently brush your tongue back and forth and side to side, and then rinse your mouth with water. Some toothbrushes also have a tongue cleaner built in on the back of the head of the brush, so if your toothbrush has one built in, you can also use that. Using a tongue scraper can be an even better method of cleaning your tongue, simply swipe it along your tongue and rinse after each time swipe. Always make sure to be gentle when cleaning your tongue, if it feels sore or starts to bleed then you are using too much force.
 
You should try to clean your tongue at least twice a day, once in the morning and once in the evening, but cleaning it more often doesn’t hurt. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us at Rideau Dental Centre by calling 613-230-7475.

 

Dental Sealants

May 24, 2016 | Posted Education

Dental sealants are thin plastic coatings that are applied to the chewing surface and grooves of the back teeth where decay most often occurs. Proper brushing and flossing habits help remove plaque from the smooth surfaces on teeth, but often the bristles of your toothbrush are not able to reach all the way into the deep grooves on your back teeth to clean them. Dental sealants protect these grooves by “sealing out” any food and plaque. It is for this reason that many dentists will suggest applying sealants, especially on young children.
 
Sealants are quite easy for your dentist or hygienist to apply. They get painted onto your tooth enamel where it bonds with your teeth and hardens. As long as the sealant remains undamaged, it will protect your teeth from decay, which means sealants usually last for a number of years. Some sealants also contain fluoride, which can further prevent decay.
 
When you visit your dentist/hygienist after receiving sealants, your dentist will inspect their condition and reapply when necessary. If you are interested in having dental sealants applied to your teeth, ask your dentist during your next visit, or contact us at the Rideau Dental Centre by calling 613-230-7475 to book an appointment.
 

Dental Sealants

May 24, 2016 | Posted Education

Dental sealants are thin plastic coatings that are applied to the chewing surface and grooves of the back teeth where decay most often occurs. Proper brushing and flossing habits help remove plaque from the smooth surfaces on teeth, but often the bristles of your toothbrush are not able to reach all the way into the deep grooves on your back teeth to clean them. Dental sealants protect these grooves by “sealing out” any food and plaque. It is for this reason that many dentists will suggest applying sealants, especially on young children.
 
Sealants are quite easy for your dentist or hygienist to apply. They get painted onto your tooth enamel where it bonds with your teeth and hardens. As long as the sealant remains undamaged, it will protect your teeth from decay, which means sealants usually last for a number of years. Some sealants also contain fluoride, which can further prevent decay.
 
When you visit your dentist/hygienist after receiving sealants, your dentist will inspect their condition and reapply when necessary. If you are interested in having dental sealants applied to your teeth, ask your dentist during your next visit, or contact us at the Rideau Dental Centre by calling 613-230-7475 to book an appointment.