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Posts for: January, 2015

By Joseph R. Hendrick, Jr., DDS, PA
January 29, 2015
Category: Oral Health

Olivia Newton-John, now in her early 60's, is still a fresh-faced picture of health — with a radiant smile to match. How does she do it? She does it with healthy habits learned from her German-born mother, Irene.

“I love greens, and as many organic vegetables as possible,” Olivia recently told Dear Doctor magazine. “From spinach to salads to beets — pretty much any and all greens!”

Olivia credits her mom with instilling her lifelong love of healthy foods. Irene used dark bread rather than white bread for sandwiches and even made her own yogurt — which she used as a topping on baked fruit for dessert.

“Growing up, my mum really taught us some great eating habits,” Olivia told the magazine. “When I was a girl in school, all of my friends would have cakes and cookies and fun foods but my mum was all about teaching us to eat healthy foods and to be very aware of what we were putting into our bodies. At the time I was annoyed about it, but looking back now I thank her for teaching me at an early age to eat healthily.”

Irene paid particular attention to her children's oral health. “My mum always made us brush and floss after every meal so, once again, like the foods we ate, she taught us early about the importance of great dental hygiene,” said Olivia, who has an older brother and sister.

As a mom herself, Olivia passed those healthy habits down to her daughter, Chloe.

“I always insisted on regular dental checkups and limited sugar, especially in soft drinks — they were never in our fridge,” she said.

Parents do play an important role in developing healthy oral habits from the very beginning, starting with proper tooth-brushing techniques. By age 2, a brushing routine should be established using a smear of fluoride toothpaste. For older toddlers, parents can use a child's size soft toothbrush with water and a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste. Children need help brushing until at least age 6, when they can generally take over brushing by themselves and also learn to floss.

The point of a good daily oral hygiene routine is to remove the film of bacteria that collects daily along the gum line, and in the nooks and crannies of teeth. Effective daily removal of this biofilm will do more to prevent tooth decay and promote lifelong dental health than anything else.

If you would like to learn more about preventing tooth decay or teaching your child to brush and floss correctly, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. If you would like to read Dear Doctor's entire interview with Olivia Newton-John, please see “Olivia Newton-John.” Dear Doctor also has more on “How to Help Your Child Develop the Best Habits for Oral Health.”

By Joseph R. Hendrick, Jr., DDS, PA
January 23, 2015
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: Teeth Whitening  

Find out whether professional teeth whitening in Shelby will give you the results you are looking for.

With the start of a fresh new year it’s also a great time to consider ways to improve your appearance. If avid coffee drinking has caused significant dental stains then you may find that simple whitening toothpastes and over-the-counter whitening rinses just aren’tTeeth Whitening doing the trick. Therefore, it may be time to consider getting teeth whitening in Shelby.

So what stains can professional teeth whitening actually combat and can it work for you?

Natural tooth structures: The teeth whitening agent we use is strong; however, it only works on natural tooth enamel. This means that any type of dental work or restoration like veneers, crowns, bonding or fillings won’t be affected by this treatment. Therefore, if you happen to have dental work and still want to get teeth whitening, you may also need to replace your dental restorations in order to get a matching, uniformed smile.

External stains: Teeth whitening is most effective on external stains caused by certain foods and beverages like coffee. External stains tend to cause yellowing teeth. However, teeth whitening will not lighten internal stains caused by trauma or long-term antibiotic use. These stains are usually gray. Teeth whitening will also not affect white spots on the teeth. This treatment works best on stains that affect the outer layers of tooth enamel.

Who should not opt for professional teeth whitening?

Anyone with a significant amount of dental restorations, those with internal stains, and those with severe tooth sensitivity may not benefit from professional teeth whitening in Shelby. If you are looking for ways to improve your smile, you will want to talk to us about other cosmetic options like dental veneers that may work better for you.

To get a new smile for the New Year, turn to teeth whitening in Shelby to transform your teeth. Call Joseph R. Hendrick, Jr., DDS, PA today to schedule your first teeth whitening appointment and start the journey toward a whiter smile.

By Joseph R. Hendrick, Jr., DDS, PA
January 14, 2015
Category: Oral Health
Tags: orthodontics   oral hygiene  

A “perfect storm” of dental disease could be brewing for your teenager undergoing orthodontic treatment. As braces or other appliances complicate hygiene efforts, newly erupted permanent teeth and changing hormone levels could also increase their susceptibility to tooth decay or gum disease.

Here are a few tips for helping your teenager maintain healthy teeth and gums while wearing braces.

Eat a Healthy Diet. Nutrition is a key component in a healthy mouth. Your teenager should eat a diet low in sugar, a key food source for bacteria that cause dental disease, and acidic foods and beverages that cause enamel erosion. Limit between-meal snacks to only a few times a day and drink acidic beverages only at mealtime.

Brush all Tooth and Gum Surfaces. For patients who wear braces, it’s important to thoroughly brush above and below the wire running through the affixed brackets. Holding the brush at a 45-degree angle, brush between the wire and gums all the way around both the upper and lower jaws, then repeat the same technique brushing surfaces below the wire.

Clean Between Teeth. Flossing can be difficult while wearing braces, but plaque removal from between teeth is necessary for healthier teeth and gums. Orthodontic patients can benefit from special flossing tools like floss threaders, small interdental brushes or irrigators that remove plaque with sprayed water under pressure.

Incorporate Fluoride into Your Dental Care. A proven decay-fighter, fluoride strengthens enamel against erosion and infection. In addition to hygiene products and many drinking water systems, we can also supplement fluoride through gels or varnishes applied to the teeth during office visits, as well as prescription toothpastes or rinses with higher levels of fluoride for patients at higher risk of dental disease.

Use an Antibacterial Mouthrinse. Orthodontic patients with gingivitis (gum inflammation) or other bacterial-induced conditions may benefit from over-the-counter or prescribed antibacterial mouthrinses.

Maintaining an orthodontic patient’s teeth and gums can be difficult, but not impossible. A little extra attention — along with regular office cleanings and checkups — will go a long way in preventing dental disease.

If you would like more information on effective oral hygiene while undergoing orthodontic treatment, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Caring for Teeth During Orthodontic Treatment.”

By Joseph R. Hendrick, Jr., DDS, PA
January 06, 2015
Category: Oral Health
Tags: Gum Disease  

At our Shelby dentist’s office, we specialize in treating diseases and disorders of the teeth and gums, especially when this comes to periodontal or gum disease. This condition occurs when harmful bacteria infiltrate the gums, causing decay and disease. The gums can start to recede or pull away from the teeth. This can result in loose teeth and even cause your teeth to fall out.

A number of factors can come into play to determine if you could be at risk for gum disease. Knowing your individual risk factors can help you prevent gum disease whenever possible.

1. Age

The older you are, the more likely you are to experience gum disease. An estimated 70 percent of Americans older than age 65 have Gum Diseaseperiodontitis, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

2. Family History

If your parents have experienced gum disease, you are at an increased risk for having it too. Always let your dentist know if you have a family history of gum disease or early tooth loss.

3. Your Medical History

If you have a history of chronic conditions such as diabetes, heart disease or rheumatoid arthritis, you are at greater risk for gum disease. These conditions are associated with causing inflammation in the body, which can lead to gum disease.

4. Grinding or Clenching Your Teeth

Each of these actions creates added friction on your teeth, which can weaken the supporting structures of your teeth. As a result, you advance the rate at which your gum tissue deteriorates.

5. Poor Nutrition

Your body uses the nutrients you give it to make healthy tissues, fight off infections and heal tissues. If you do not fuel your body with the proper nutrients, it cannot fight back.

If you have questions about your personal risk factors for gum disease, please contact our Shelby dentist’s office at (704) 484-0077.

Dentist in Shelby, NC
Joseph R. Hendrick, Jr., DDS, PA
511 N. Morgan Street
Shelby, NC 28150
(704) 484-0077
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