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    What Are the Best Dental Products? Here’s How to Choose

    by Saunders DDS on October 13, 2019

    It can feel overwhelming shopping for dental products at the store. From the many flavors of toothpaste to waxed and unwaxed floss, how do you know what’s best for you? And what about your toothbrush—should you go for electric or a manual option?

    At Saunders DDS, we know patients struggle to know which products are the best for the health of their teeth and gums. Keeping up with your oral care is essential, and choosing the right toothpaste, mouthwash, and floss for both you and your children should feel simple.

    We’ve put together a guide to help people better choose their oral care products to support their oral health, from your toothpaste all the way down to your mouthwash. Here’s how to choose the best oral care products! 

    Look for Fluoride Toothpaste 

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    Going with a fluoride toothpaste that has the American Dental Association (ADA) seal of acceptance on it is your best bet to prevent tooth decay.

    Fluoride has many benefits for teeth. It helps strengthen tooth enamel and protects the teeth against tooth decay. For adults, fluoride toothpaste is essential, unless you have an allergy or have otherwise been directed not to use fluoride by your dentist.

    Children can also benefit from fluoride. However, too much fluoride can cause children to develop what’s called dental fluorosis, which are irreversible white spots on the teeth.

    Fortunately, visiting your dentist in Asheville can help you know if you and your children are getting the right amount of fluoride. Some patients live in areas where fluoride is added to the drinking water, and so may not need as much fluoride as patients who have no other source of fluoride.

    Getting the right amount of fluoride is essential for both adults and children, so schedule an appointment with us to ensure your fluoride exposure is beneficial to your smile!

    What About Mouthwash?

    Many patients have questions about mouthwash—whether or not it’s necessary and how it can help protect the teeth and gums.

    Traditional mouthwash can help freshen breath and inhibit plaque growth, while mouth rinses such as fluoride rinses can help prevent tooth decay, especially in children. Again, looking for the ADA seal of acceptance when shopping for mouthwash is essential.

    For most patients, whether or not you really need to use mouthwash is more of a personal preference. Some mouthwashes have benefits such as helping to prevent tooth decay and reducing surface stains on the teeth.

    Your dentist in Asheville, Dr. Saunders, can recommend the use of mouthwash if he thinks it’s necessary, and may recommend fluoride rinses for young children that are susceptible to tooth decay and aren’t getting enough fluoride at home.

    Generally, children younger than six shouldn’t use mouthwashes that contain alcohol. If you’re interested in a mouthwash for your child, look for kid-friendly versions!

    Picking the Right Floss

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    Flossing is integral to removing plaque, food debris, and bacteria from in-between your teeth. Without flossing, it’s estimated that you’re missing 40 percent of your tooth surfaces when cleaning your mouth.

    So what type of floss is best for your smile?

    Research has shown that there’s no difference between the efficacy of either waxed or unwaxed dental floss, so what product you choose really comes down to personal preference. There are many different kinds of floss, including flavored to help freshen your breath and even silk, which is a purportedly more eco-friendly floss of choice.

    Choose the kind of floss that will motivate you to keep up with the habit at least once every day. For patients that have orthodontia or limited range of motion, water flossers can be excellent options for removing debris between teeth to keep your smile clean!

    Other types of floss, including interdental cleaners, are also very helpful for those that have orthodontia. Similarly to other oral health products, you can look for the ADA seal of acceptance for your best picks!

    Get a Softer Toothbrush 

    Most oral health experts agree—a soft-bristled toothbrush is better for your teeth than one with stiff or firm bristles.

    Why is this?

    A toothbrush with harsher bristles can more easily damage tooth enamel. When brushing your teeth every day, the idea isn’t to brush so hard that it removes the protective layer over your teeth, your tooth enamel. Instead, gentle, more thorough brushing is what you should aim for.

    Getting a soft-bristled toothbrush will help you be more easy on your teeth and prevent the enamel erosion that can come with years of harsh brushing with a stiff-bristled toothbrush. And, if your teeth or gums are already sensitive, harsh brushing can aggravate your smile even more.

    But Wait—Is Electric or Manual Better?

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    There is evidence supporting the use of an electric toothbrush for patients who have a history of gum disease and tooth decay. Electric toothbrushes have been shown to be better at removing plaque, and keeping the gumline clear of plaque buildup which can contribute to gum disease.

    While any type of toothbrush will be better than no toothbrush, some people still prefer the manual option due to cost as well as traveling, as there are no chargers to pack when using a manual toothbrush.

    No matter what type of toothbrush you use, just be sure to use it twice every day to clean your smile and keep cavities away! And you’ll still need to change your toothbrush (or, for electric options, the head of the toothbrush) approximately every three months to prevent fraying. 

    Have More Questions? Contact Us!

    Regardless of what products you choose, maintaining your oral health has lasting benefits for both your smile and your body, as increasing evidence is showing. At Saunders DDS, we’re here to help you have healthy teeth and gums for life!

    Our experienced team can help answer all your questions during your appointment with us. We’re a kid-friendly dentist in Asheville, and can help you and your family maintain your oral health and prevent cavities and gum disease.

    Contact us today to schedule an appointment by calling us at (828) 277-6060 or request an appointment here.

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    The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is located on either side of your head near your ears and connects your jaw bone to your skull. It’s a ball-and-socket joint with a disc in-between that allows the jaw to move freely without friction.

    The combination of joint, muscles, disc, and connective tissue allows the jaw to perform complex movements that otherwise would not be possible, such as opening your mouth and moving your jaw from side to side. These movements allow us to chew, speak, and yawn with ease.

    However, as a result of the TMJ’s complexity, it can cause adverse symptoms if something’s wrong with the joint. For example, a misaligned bite could put unnecessary pressure on the TMJ, leading to chronic symptoms.

    TMJ disorders encompass a range of problems in which this necessary joint doesn’t function properly. What are some of the signs or symptoms of a possible TMJ disorder?

    Headaches

    Frequent headaches could originate from an issue with your temporomandibular joints. When these joints don’t work properly, whether due to an improper bite, genetics, or extra stress placed on the joint from teeth grinding, muscle tension can result.

    Muscle tension can be chronic and radiate throughout the head and even the neck, shoulders, and upper back. Whether you experience frequent headaches or even migraines, it could be time to visit your dentist to determine if your jaw could be at the root of the problem.

    Ear Problems

    Tinnitus is defined as the sensation of noise in the ear, and can only be heard by the person experiencing it. Tinnitus could present as a ringing in the ears, but it could also be other sounds, such as popping, roaring, or buzzing.

    There is evidence that links tinnitus and TMJ disorders. The temporomandibular joint is very close to the ear, and as such, any issue with the joint can cause ear pain or a dull aching in the ears. Some patients may also hear a clicking or grating sound when moving their jaw.

    If you have ear pain, tinnitus, or other odd sensations in your ears (such as feeling as though your ears are clogged), consider following up with your Asheville dentist. A thorough evaluation of your TMJ can help determine if there’s an issue that’s causing your ear symptoms!

    Jaw Clicking

    As we’ve mentioned, some people hear odd sounds when their jaw is in motion. These sounds may be only audible to the person experiencing them, or others may hear a popping or clicking noise as well when the person opens their mouth, is eating, or even speaking.

    Why is jaw clicking a sign of a problem with the TMJ? This clicking noise comes from the displacement of the disc that helps cushion the joint. The disc moves forward when you’re closing your mouth, and if the joint is inflamed or out of alignment, you may hear a click, then you may hear a cracking noise as the disc repositions itself upon opening your mouth.

    These noises aren’t normal and people who may have a TMJ disorder could hear popping, clicking, or cracking sounds when opening and closing their mouth.

    Facial Pain or Aching

    Temporomandibular joint disorders can cause discomfort or pain in the muscles that help your jaw function, which are located in the face. If there’s an issue with your TMJ, you could experience a sore jaw or painful facial muscles without knowing why.

    The tension that often results from a problematic TMJ can also cause discomfort at the joint itself or near the ears. People may also experience pain when chewing originating from outside the oral cavity with no known source.

    For many people with a TMJ disorder, this pain is chronic. For others, the pain may come and go. Either way, discomfort in your facial muscles is a sign something else is going on, and your professional dentist in Asheville can help diagnose the problem.

    Trouble Opening Your Mouth All the Way

    People who have a problem with their TMJ may not be able to fully open their mouth, such as when yawning. Some patients who have a severe TMJ disorder may even experience a locked jaw, which occurs when a person can’t move their jaw until the joint is repositioned.

    When opening your mouth, the cartilage disc in the ball and socket of the TMJ helps keep jaw motion smooth. However, if you experience pain when yawning or even just with opening your mouth all the way, your temporomandibular joint could be to blame.

    You Grind Your Teeth

    The relationship between teeth grinding—also called bruxism—and the TMJ is complex. Teeth grinding in and of itself is an issue that can have numerous causes, and can place additional stress on the TMJ, leading to an worsening of TMJ symptoms that may already exist.

    However, teeth grinding could also play a role in causing TMJ disorders, as it puts pressure on the muscles, connective tissue, and the joint itself, which can cause inflammation. If your grind your teeth and also experience some of the TMJ symptoms we’ve discussed above, it’s time to schedule an appointment with your experienced Asheville dentist!

    Get a Professional Exam with Dr. Saunders

    There is treatment for TMJ disorders, and it all depends on your symptoms and the suspected cause of your disorder. When you make an appointment with us at Saunders DDS, we review your symptoms and take x-rays to determine what’s causing your jaw discomfort and why.

    Therapy for TMJ disorders could range from anti-inflammatory medication to physical therapy to treatment for suspected underlying causes, such as bruxism. For severe cases, surgery may be necessary. However, for the majority of patients, TMJ pain can be managed with simple lifestyle changes.

    Have you been experiencing jaw pain or discomfort without knowing what the cause is? You could have a TMJ disorder and not realize it. Call us at Saunders DDS today at (828) 277-6060 or click here to schedule an appointment with Dr. Saunders for your jaw pain. We can help you address the cause of your discomfort so you can live a pain-free life!

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    Scientists Get One Step Closer to Regrowing Tooth Enamel

    by Saunders DDS on September 4, 2019

    Regenerating tooth enamel—the hard, translucent, protective layer over your teeth—has so far been impossible. It’s the toughest substance in the human body, and has a complicated structure that hasn’t yet been able to be replicated by modern science.

    In previous research from 2015, scientists came close to regrowing tooth enamel by replicating a component in the enamel to help the body regenerate new enamel.

    However, scientists have now created a new gel that may actually be able to grow new tooth enamel to protect the teeth and change the way we treat cavities and tooth sensitivity, both of which are common results of enamel damage.

    In new research, scientists have designed a material composed of calcium phosphate ion clusters that they’ve used to create a foundation to grow enamel. This foundation would essentially create a new layer that mimics hard tissue development, such as that seen in our natural tooth enamel.

    Once the gel is used, the damaged enamel can essentially regenerate itself because the base layer replicates the structure and biological properties of natural tooth enamel.

    This new science could lead to an effective way to regenerate tooth enamel at your dentist in the future. Here’s what that could mean for your smile!

    First, What Exactly Is Tooth Enamel?

    Our teeth are essentially made of two different parts—the crown of the tooth, which is the part that you can see in your mouth, and the root, which is anchored in your jaw and lies deep in the center of the tooth.

    Leading down to the roots of your tooth is an area called a pulp chamber, which contains nerves and blood vessels that keep the tooth alive, sometimes referred to as simply the pulp of the tooth.

    The roots that anchor the tooth are surrounded by a material called cementum, which is a type of connective tissue that protects your tooth’s root in the jaw.

    The crown of your tooth is mostly made up of dentin, which is the layer beneath tooth enamel and cementum. It’s softer compared to enamel, but is still an essential component of your smile. Your tooth’s crown is covered in enamel, which is the shiny, hard substance that protects our teeth.

    The importance of tooth enamel can’t be overstated. It protects teeth from chips, fractures, and breaks. Enamel is also designed to keep our teeth safe from the acids and bacteria that exist in our mouths to prevent tooth decay.

    The smooth texture of enamel also helps prevent food from sticking to your teeth. Tooth enamel forms in the womb when the teeth begin to develop during the third month of pregnancy, so all the teeth are mineralized with tooth enamel before birth!

    How Tooth Enamel Is Damaged

    Since tooth enamel contains one of the highest mineral contents, it can be damaged in a process called demineralization, which can effectively weaken tooth enamel and lead to cavities.

    Of course, tooth enamel is designed to protect teeth, but it’s not immune to damage as the result of the foods we eat, the bacteria in our oral cavities, and physical damage such as from brushing too hard.

    Demineralization can happen for a variety of reasons, including poor oral care, which can lead to plaque buildup (a mixture of bacteria and food particles that can accumulate on our teeth) and cavities.

    Diet also plays a role in our enamel health, as nutrient-dense foods have been shown to support enamel health while processed foods—including sugars—can work to hurt it.

    Tooth enamel can also be damaged from acidic foods and drinks, which cause the oral cavity to produce bacteria that can attack tooth enamel. Dry mouth has a similar effect—it causes lack of saliva which can lead to less of a buffer between bacteria and acids and your teeth, and can cause weakened tooth enamel.

    Currently, there’s no way for tooth enamel to be regenerated—if a cavity or tooth sensitivity results from your missing tooth enamel, your dentist in Asheville would need to treat the problem with fillings or fluoride to protect your teeth where your missing tooth enamel is.

    The Future of Fillings

    The research notes that while modern filling materials contribute to restoring tooth enamel, they aren’t able to permanently repair the enamel because they’re foreign materials. However, the new layer of regenerated tooth enamel would naturally be integrated with your original tooth enamel in a way that would be permanent.

    Their hope is that this process could one day lead to an effective cure for enamel erosion in clinical practice. The researchers say the key to regenerating enamel is the duplication of its structure, which would present an effective natural approach to missing tooth enamel.

    Currently, modern dental fillings are the only way to rejuvenate teeth that have been affected by tooth decay. While fillings certainly do their job to protect the tooth and its structure following decay, fillings don’t last forever and all fillings need to be replaced at some point.

    With this new gel, one day your dentist in Asheville could utilize enamel regeneration treatment to help your body grow new enamel instead of using a dental filling!

    Protect Your Enamel!

    Until the day comes when we’ll see tooth enamel regenerated at the dentist office, it’s important to protect your enamel in the meantime to prevent tooth sensitivity, tooth decay, discoloration, and a weakened tooth structure.

    Keeping your tooth enamel healthy is as simple as following just a few general guidelines:

    • Brush and floss your teeth. This will keep plaque and harmful bacteria off of your pearly whites, allowing your tooth enamel to do its job.
    • Eat healthy. A diet rich in vegetables, fruits, and lean protein with vitamins and minerals including calcium and vitamin D can help your tooth enamel stay strong.
    • Visit your dentist. Your Asheville dentist will conduct regular exams and cleanings of your teeth, allowing your tooth enamel to stay strong and healthy while you enjoy a beautiful, clean smile!

    While the gel hasn’t yet been approved for human trials yet, this marks yet another step closer to scientists being able to regenerate tooth enamel, which could change the way we treat tooth decay and care for our smiles in the future!

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    Do I Qualify for Cosmetic Dentistry?

    by Saunders DDS on August 27, 2019

    More than one-third of Americans are unhappy with their smile. People associate a healthy, beautiful smile with a better social life, a better love life, and even success.

    It makes sense that people would want to correct flaws in their smile to create a better self-image and confidence so they don’t have to hold back and can freely smile, laugh, and speak in public. Cosmetic dentistry from your dentist in Asheville can help make this possible.

    Cosmetic dentistry includes a number of dental procedures specifically designed to enhance the appearance of your smile. For people who want to change the color, shape, or alignment of their teeth, cosmetic dentistry offers something for everyone.

    While more focused on your appearance, cosmetic dentistry can also help restore your smile’s health and function, and so these procedures may overlap with some that would traditionally be considered restorative dentistry.

    Who qualifies for cosmetic dentistry? Here’s what you need to know when it comes to the available procedures and your candidacy for each.

    Teeth Whitening

    Teeth whitening is a popular procedure that can remove stains in your smile and leave you with flawless white teeth. People not only associate whiter teeth with youth, but with health and cleanliness as well.

    Anyone who wants whiter teeth is a potential candidate for teeth whitening. However, it’s important to note that if you have tooth decay or gum disease, you’ll need to get these underlying health issues treated before moving forward with your whitening procedure.

    People who have sensitive teeth are still candidates for teeth whitening procedures, although your Asheville dentist may take extra precautions to ensure any sensitivity you experience in the hours following your procedure is kept to a minimum, such as by applying a fluoride treatment to your teeth.

    Dental Veneers

    Dental veneers are a form of cosmetic dentistry that consists of a durable yet lightweight shell that’s placed over your natural teeth. Dental veneers are typically made of porcelain ceramic, which is highly stain resistant and strong.

    Your natural teeth will require a bit of preparation work, but for patients who qualify for veneers, the treatment can be transformative and cost-effective.

    Patients who qualify for dental veneers may have one, several, or all of the following dental concerns:

    • Deeply stained teeth that don’t respond to a professional teeth whitening
    • Teeth that have numerous chips and cracks
    • Crooked teeth
    • Teeth that are pointy or otherwise oddly-shaped
    • Smiles that have severe dental fluorosis

    People who have numerous issues with their smile may want to consider dental veneers to correct all their issues at once. Veneers are considered an irreversible form of treatment, so it’s important to be sure you’re making the best choice when opting for dental veneers!

    Dental Implants

    While also a form of restorative dentistry, dental implants also play a crucial role in the appearance of your smile.

    While partial dentures and bridges can help fill in the gap left by a missing tooth, many patients find that dental implants are a more functional, secure option—and one that looks just like your natural teeth.

    A dental implant is a post made of ceramic or titanium that’s surgically implanted into your jaw and allowed to heal, which will function as an artificial tooth root. Once the post is healed, a dental crown that’s made specifically to match your natural teeth will be placed on the end, allowing you to chew, speak, and smile like normal.

    Patients who qualify for dental implants are those that have enough remaining bone in their jaw following a missing tooth; otherwise, the implant post won’t be properly supported.

    People who are missing natural teeth may experience bone reabsorption, meaning the jaw bone is no longer being stimulated by the missing tooth’s roots and so the body no longer sees a need for it.

    X-rays with your Asheville dentist can tell if you’re a candidate for dental implants. However, even if you don’t qualify for dental implants, don’t fret—you may have the option of doing a bone graft to support a regular dental implant, or you may qualify for mini dental implants instead, which are typically used for front teeth instead of molars.

    Dental Crowns

    While most patients will qualify for a dental crown, a dental crown isn’t always appropriate for every given situation.

    Dental crowns are typically made of porcelain ceramic and are extremely durable. People who have teeth that have undergone root canal therapy  or a dental implant procedure will have their tooth fitted with a dental crown.

    When else would someone qualify for a dental crown?

    • When a tooth has extensive decay that can’t be fixed with a filling alone
    • For teeth that have been cracked and need extra protection
    • People who opt for dental bridges will receive dental crowns as part of the reconstruction
    • For teeth that are irreversibly discolored
    • To restore teeth that have a compromised structure due to numerous dental procedures

    Dental crowns are designed to protect teeth and restore your appearance, but are also considered a permanent form of treatment. Your dentist can suggest the appropriate use of dental crowns for your unique smile!

    Dental Bonding

    Dental bonding is when your Asheville dentist uses composite resin—a tooth-colored material that’s also used for modern fillings—to correct minor issues with your smile.

    Dental bonding has many uses, including for smiles that have been chipped, cracked, or discolored. Dental bonding can even help fill in gaps between teeth.

    People who qualify for dental bonding will be those experiencing the above issues with their smile. Dental bonding can help a single discolored tooth, and is a minimally-invasive treatment can play an instrumental role in restoring a smile’s appearance.

    Almost everyone will qualify for dental bonding, although you’ll need to have this procedure completed every few years to maintain your appearance.

    Schedule a Consultation with Us!

    At Saunders DDS, we know the importance of a smile goes beyond its function. People want to feel secure about their teeth in regards to more than just their health.

    If you’re located in the Asheville area, give us a call to learn more about our cosmetic dentistry services or to schedule a consultation with us. Dr. Saunders is experienced in helping patients of all ages have the smile they’ve always wanted.

    Why wait for your dream smile? Call us at (828) 277-6060 or click here to make an appointment!

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    What Could Be Causing a Dry Mouth?

    by Saunders DDS on August 27, 2019

    Dry mouth, the technical term for which is xerostomia, is when a person experiences an unusually dry mouth. While some people might think experiencing dry mouth isn’t a big deal, it has a bigger impact on your oral health than you think.

    Saliva helps protect our tooth enamel and provide it with the minerals it needs to stay strong. Without enough saliva, tooth enamel is prone to bacteria that can lead to tooth decay and gum disease.

    In fact, lack of saliva has been linked to increased risk for fungal infections in the mouth, such as oral thrush. Not to mention dry mouth can make chewing and swallowing feel difficult, and contribute to chronic bad breath.

    But what could be causing your dry mouth? Here are a few of the top causes of this condition that could be impacting your oral health!

    Medications

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    There are hundreds of different medications—both prescription and over-the-counter—known for causing dry mouth as a side effect. Some of these medications include:

    • Antidepressants
    • High blood pressure medication
    • Anxiety medication
    • Antihistamines
    • Muscle relaxants
    • Decongestants
    • Pain medication
    • Medications for urinary incontinence

    Some chemotherapy medications and treatments, including radiation therapy, can also cause dry mouth, although this effect usually subsides once the treatment is complete.

    While some of these medications are, of course, necessary, if you suffer from chronic dry mouth, it might be helpful to talk to your doctor to determine if there are different medications you can try or for tips on how to combat your dry mouth to support your oral health.

    Drugs and Alcohol

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    Drugs such as marijuana and methamphetamine are known to cause dry mouth, in addition to smoking or chewing tobacco. Smoking not only contributes to dry mouth, but to bad breath as well!

    Alcohol will also cause dry mouth, since it has a dehydrating effect on the body. Alcohol has also been linked to an increased risk of tooth decay and gum disease, in addition to oral cancer.

    The nicotine present in e-cigarettes or “vaping” products also contributes to dry mouth—these products are still being researched and their effects on the body and the oral cavity are not yet clear, but we do know they contain dangerous chemicals and can dry out the oral cavity.

    Quitting smoking and reducing your alcohol consumption can help you have a healthier smile and reduce your risk for dry mouth!

    Dehydration

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    It’s estimated that 77 percent of Americans don’t drink enough water during the day. Your fluid intake will depend on your weight and activity level, with two to three cups per hour being a general rule, although you may need more if you work or exercise in the heat.

    Dehydration can quickly dry out the oral cavity and lead to an imbalance of bacteria that can harm your tooth enamel. Remember, caffeine works to offset your fluid intake, meaning drinking coffee, caffeinated teas, or energy drinks won’t help you stay hydrated.

    In addition, older people tend to be less thirsty and drink less water, increasing their risk for dehydration and making it even more important to stay hydrated throughout the day. Many older adults can benefit from gentle reminders such as an alarm or note on the fridge to help them reach their necessary fluid intake every day.

    Certain Health Conditions

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    There are a few health conditions that have the potential to cause dry mouth on their own. For example, unmanaged diabetes can cause you to have less saliva, leaving you with a dry mouth. Dry mouth is a symptom of both type 1 and type 2 diabetes.

    Sjogren’s syndrome is an autoimmune disorder in which causes dry eyes and dry mouth. Nearly every patient with Sjogren’s will have some degree of dry mouth, which can be managed with increased water intake, sugar-free chewing gum, and even using a humidifier for the dry seasons.

    Even Alzheimer’s disease has been associated with dry mouth. In addition to not being as thirsty as they used to be, people with Alzheimer’s may be on certain medications that make dry mouth more likely. People with Alzheimer’s may also not be able to communicate to caregivers that their mouth is dry.

    Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) can also contribute to dry mouth, and could indicate the immune system has been damaged and that white blood cell count is low.

    Sleep Apnea

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    Sleep apnea refers to sleep disorders where a person will actually stop breathing while sleeping. People with sleep apnea typically snore and sleep with their mouths open.

    Not only does this dry out the oral cavity at night, but can lead to a dry mouth upon waking and for some, dry mouth during the day as well.

    If you suspect you have sleep apnea or your partner hears you gasping for air at night, it could be time to seek an evaluation from a sleep specialist. Sleep apnea can have serious consequences and should always be treated so you can get a full night’s rest and help stop your symptoms!

    Don’t Ignore Dry Mouth!

    Ignoring your chronic dry mouth can increase your risk for oral health problems. Experiencing dry mouth once in a while usually isn’t problematic, but experiencing it on a daily basis is.

    When you come in to see us for a checkup at Saunders DDS, we can evaluate your smile for signs of dry mouth and ask you questions about your experience with dry mouth. If you suffer from chronic dry mouth, it could be time to follow up with your dentist in Asheville or your doctor to determine the cause.

    People who have to manage dry mouth may need to come in more often for a checkup, which can help prevent oral health issues. We can let you know our professional recommendation for the frequency of your visits with us as well as what you can do to help prevent and manage dry mouth.

    Schedule an appointment with us at Saunders DDS to discover if you could be suffering from dry mouth and to help protect your teeth and gums. Call us today at (828) 277-6060 to schedule your consultation!

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    What to Expect When Getting a Root Canal

    by Saunders DDS on July 16, 2019

    A root canal is a procedure that’s performed by your Asheville dentist or sometimes an endodontist (a specialist in saving teeth). During a root canal, your dentist will restore your tooth instead of extracting it, giving people a way to save their teeth without the need for a replacement.

    It’s suspected that some ancient cultures used instruments in an attempt to perform root canals on damaged or infected teeth, but modern root canals didn’t happen until the 18th century or so. Today, root canals are considered a viable way to protect and save teeth from extraction.

    What can you expect when getting a root canal with your dentist in Asheville?

    First, What Exactly Is a Root Canal?

    When the center of your tooth—which contains all the nerves that keep your tooth alive—has been affected by injury or decay, you may need a root canal.

    During a root canal, your dentist will remove the nerve tissue that may be dead or infected inside your tooth and seal the chamber with a mix of natural and synthetic material to prevent further damage from occurring.

    A root canal is usually finished with a dental crown, which helps protect the sealed chamber of your tooth to prevent the need for future dental work.

    Why Would I Need a Root Canal?

    Root canal therapy is considered under certain circumstances, such as:

    • Extensive decay. If you have a large cavity that’s compromised your tooth structure and can’t sustain a filling, your dentist may recommend root canal therapy.
    • A tooth fracture. If your tooth has a deep crack, bacteria may get into the center of your tooth and cause pain or infection.
    • Injury. Sometimes an accident that injures a tooth can cause the nerve tissue to die, which can cause a dark or gray-colored tooth that can only be restored with a root canal.

    Your oral healthcare professional will evaluate your unique smile to determine if root canal therapy would benefit you.

    Getting a Consultation

    During your consultation, your Asheville dentist will conduct a professional exam of your smile which will include x-rays to determine if root canal therapy would be appropriate for you.

    If your dental practice recommends a root canal, you’ll discuss the next steps with your dentist. Most root canal procedures take about two appointments—one to conduct the actual procedure and the next to fit you with your final restoration, a dental crown.

    Your dentist will also review all your other options with you to determine if a root canal is the best choice for your smile.

    What Happens During Root Canal Therapy

    During a root canal, your dentist will use a local anesthetic to numb the area that’s getting a root canal. If you’d prefer to have a stronger type of sedation during the procedure, you can discuss this with your dentist during your consultation.

    With new technology, root canals are not considered to be painful and are more similar to getting a filling.

    Your dentist will then make an opening in your tooth and remove the nerve tissue from the chamber inside the tooth and your tooth’s roots (hence the name root canal).

    The inside of your tooth will be cleaned and sealed. After the procedure is complete, your dentist may give you a temporary restoration to protect the tooth until you can get a permanent crown placed.

    Taking Care of Your Tooth—What Foods Can You Eat?

    You can drive yourself home following the appointment, but it’s important not to eat any foods until the numbness in your mouth wears off.

    The affected tooth may have some sensitivity for a few days following your procedure and the surrounding area may be a bit swollen. Your dentist may also prescribe antibiotics after your treatment.

    In regards to foods, try to avoid hard or crunchy foods in addition to foods that are very hot or cold, at least for the first few days after your root canal. Stick to softer foods that are easier to eat and closer to room temperature until your mouth heals.

    Signs and Symptoms to Look Out for

    Your discomfort should subside within a few days after your root canal procedure, but what signs and symptoms should you look out for in the meantime?

    • Extreme pain or swelling that won’t go away
    • A rash or hives that may be itchy; this could indicate an allergic reaction to a medication or a substance used during your treatment
    • If you can actually see swelling, whether it’s inside or outside your mouth
    • You experience the symptoms you were having before your root canal
    • Your temporary filling comes out

    Any of these signs or symptoms following root canal therapy could indicate a more serious issue and should be evaluated by your professional dentist. Always call your dentist with any questions or concerns you may have!

    How Long Will Root Canal Therapy Last?

    Root canal therapy can last a lifetime with the right care. This includes not only caring for your teeth with daily brushing and flossing, but also by visiting your dentist for regular checkups. Your dentist can support your care for your smile with regular cleanings and checkups that will help prevent infection and the need for future restoration work.

    Do You Need a Root Canal?

    It’s hard to tell whether or not you need a root canal without an exam from your Asheville dentist. In many cases, a filling will be enough to repair the tooth, but for some people, root canal therapy will be necessary.

    If you have a tooth infection or one tooth that’s darker than the others, root canal therapy might save your smile. Contact us at Saunders DDS to schedule an appointment to evaluate your smile by calling us at (828) 277-6060 or by filling out this form to request an appointment!

    No one wants to hear that they need to have a tooth removed. Dentists have the job of protecting and saving your teeth, but unfortunately, sometimes a tooth extraction is necessary.

    How can you know if a tooth needs to be removed? There’s not one answer for everyone. Tooth extractions are evaluated on a case-by-case basis with your professional dentist in Asheville.

    If your tooth can be saved, your dentist will do everything they can to save it, including dental bonding, a root canal procedure, or by putting a crown on the tooth. However, under what such circumstances might a tooth need to be removed?

    Tooth Decay That’s Too Deep for a Root Canal

    When tooth decay is present, those regular dentist visits are going to help catch the cavity before it has a chance to completely destroy your tooth. For most people, tooth decay won’t cause any symptoms until it’s progressed to the point that the cavity is very large.

    Even if tooth decay has compromised the tooth, it may still be possible for your dentist to conduct root canal therapy on the tooth and put a crown over the remaining structure of the tooth to protect it. However, in some cases, the decay is so extensive and so deep that a root canal won’t help.

    If your tooth is past the point of being saved by a root canal, your dentist may recommend extraction as the next step.

    Impacted Wisdom Teeth Are Causing Problems

    Wisdom teeth, or your third molars that come in your late teens or early adult years, don’t cause issues for some people. For others, their wisdom teeth are impacted and may require extraction.

    What is an impacted wisdom tooth? Impacted wisdom teeth don’t erupt fully through the gumline, meaning they essentially get trapped in your jaw. There are several reasons this happens—wisdom teeth may not have room to come in all the way due to overcrowding in the mouth. The tooth may be coming in sideways and push against the neighboring teeth, therefore requiring extraction.

    Impacted wisdom teeth can cause damage to adjacent teeth, discomfort, and other complications with your smile. Wisdom teeth that are impacted are more common in the lower jaw.

    If your wisdom teeth are impacted, your dentist will recommend they be removed to prevent further discomfort and damage.

    Gum Disease Has Taken Its Toll

    Gum disease, or periodontal disease, is unfortunately very common. The early stages of gum disease will be more noticeable than the early stages of tooth decay for most people—including red, swollen, or tender gum tissue.

    Many people don’t realize just how much gum disease can impact their smile, especially if left to progress. As gum disease gets worse, it not only becomes harder to reverse, but has the potential to cause tooth loss.

    Even if your gum disease hasn’t caused tooth loss yet, the connective tissue that helps to anchor your teeth in place might be so damaged by the bacteria and infection of gum disease that the only option your dentist in Asheville has is to pull the tooth.

    Gum disease can affect people of all ages but is more common in older adults. Remember, it’s completely preventable with the right home care habits and regular trips to the dentist!

    Your Teeth Are Crowded

    If your mouth is small and your teeth are big (which is usually the result of genetics), you may not have enough room for all your teeth. An orthodontist may recommend that some of the teeth be removed prior to orthodontic treatment and to ensure enough space for every tooth in your mouth.

    While misaligned and crowded teeth are obvious in some smiles, they aren’t in others. Your dentist in Asheville can evaluate your smile and refer you to an orthodontist to determine if your crowded teeth actually need professional treatment or a tooth extraction to remedy.

    You’ve Been in an Accident

    Your dentist will do everything they can to prevent the need for a tooth extraction if you’ve had an accident. However, there are times when an injury to a tooth is so severe that your dentist in Asheville unfortunately has no other option besides to extract the tooth.

    Cases such as these may include when the tooth has been broken off to a point where it can’t be saved or a severely fractured tooth. Some dental emergencies can be prevented such as sports injuries when you should be wearing a mouthguard or getting regular checkups to ensure your teeth are strong and healthy!

    A Baby Tooth Won’t Come Out

    If your child has a baby tooth that just won’t come out and is impeding the progress of the adult teeth, your dentist may suggest an extraction.

    For most children, the primary teeth will fall out before the adult teeth come in. However, for other children, the tooth won’t fall out and instead will affect the eruption of the permanent tooth coming in behind it—this is commonly referred to as an over-retained baby tooth.

    Baby teeth help guide permanent teeth into place, so when a baby tooth isn’t lost, it can ultimately lead to crooked teeth in some cases. While not every child who has an over-retained tooth will need an extraction, some children will to prevent future problems with their smile.

    Options to Replace Missing Teeth

    If you need to get a tooth extracted, don’t worry about having a missing tooth. Saunders DDS offers numerous options for you to restore your smile and fill in the gap left by a pulled tooth.

    We offer dental bridges, dental implants, and full and partial dentures for patients who need to restore a missing tooth, so you won’t have to live with a compromised smile!

    Tooth Extraction with Your Asheville Dentist

    The only way to know for sure if your tooth needs to be extracted is to get a professional opinion from your dentist in Asheville. Are you having symptoms of gum disease, a tooth infection, or an injury to your smile? We offer emergency dental visits in addition to our regular appointments, so contact us today by requesting an appointment here or calling us at (828) 277-6060.

    Asheville dentist

    Busting Six Common Myths About Oral Care

    by Saunders DDS on July 1, 2019

    You want to take the best care of your smile. When you were young, your parents probably taught you how to take care of your teeth and now, you’re responsible for your own oral care.

    But have you been doing things right or have the things you’ve been taught not been as helpful?

    Many of us were taught different oral care habits that actually aren’t beneficial for our teeth and gums. What are some common myths about oral care? Let’s talk about six different myths that could be impacting your smile!

    Myth #1: Brushing Right After a Meal Is Beneficial

    Some people were taught that brushing their teeth immediately after a meal is the best way to remove plaque and prevent damage to your tooth enamel that could cause cavities.

    However, research has shown that brushing immediately after a meal can cause even more harm to your tooth enamel.

    In fact, the American Dental Association advises people to wait a full 60 minutes after eating a meal to brush their teeth, especially after eating something acidic. Why is this?

    Your tooth enamel is porous and is affected by the different substances that you eat. This means that your tooth enamel may become softer or weaker after eating as your oral cavity’s pH balance changes based on the food you consume.

    When you brush immediately after eating or drinking an acidic drink such as soda, you can hurt your tooth enamel and even cause it to slowly wear away over time.

    Myth #2: Artificial Sweeteners Are Better Than Regular Ones

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    Some people think they’re doing their smile a favor by skipping real sugar and instead going with artificial sweeteners, such as those found in diet sodas and sugar-free candies.

    The truth is that, while they don’t actually contain sugar, artificial sweeteners can be just as harsh on your tooth enamel as regular sweeteners, according to research.

    Consider that the pH of a regular cola with sugar is around 2.52 while the pH of diet cola is only 3.1. That’s not much of a difference, and they’re both far below a neutral pH of 7.

    If you choose to drink soda, be sure to follow with water and never brush your teeth immediately after!

    Myth #3: It Doesn’t Matter What Toothbrush I Use

    Brushing your teeth is instrumental to preventing cavities and gum disease, but choosing a toothbrush with stiff bristles can be unnecessarily harsh on your tooth enamel and your gumline.

    The American Dental Association advises using a toothbrush with soft bristles. Hard bristles can damage gum tissue, tooth enamel, and even contribute to gum recession.

    Does it matter if your toothbrush is manual or electric? There’s some research showing that electric toothbrushes are more effective, especially for people who have trouble with their motor skills or people with gum disease. In the end, manual or electric doesn’t matter as long as you’re brushing your teeth!

    Myth #4: If I’m Brushing and Flossing at Home, I Don’t Need to See the Dentist

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    While cleaning your teeth at home is instrumental to preventing oral disease and cavities, visiting your dentist is just as important.

    Your dentist can spot problems before you’d have a chance to notice. Not only that, but your Asheville dentist will conduct a professional teeth cleaning which will remove the traces of plaque everyone inevitably misses when cleaning their smiles.

    In addition to conducting a thorough exam and cleaning, your dentist can conduct an oral cancer screening. This is a simple screening that can be part of your regular oral health exam and your dentist may ask you a few questions to ensure your smile is healthy.

    Getting professional care for your teeth and gums at least once a year or as directed by your dentist in Asheville can help prevent bigger problems from sabotaging your beautiful smile!

    Myth #5: Dental Restorations Last Forever

    When people get a filling to repair a tooth that has a cavity, some people are under the impression that their tooth is now fixed for life and no further repairs are needed.

    The truth is that fillings have a life expectancy, which varies based on their material and how well they’re cared for. Unfortunately no dental restoration lasts forever.

    You should always get your fillings checked up by your dentist in Asheville. Fillings that are cracked or damaged require prompt attention so that bacteria can’t penetrate the tooth and cause decay underneath your dental filling.

    Other dental restorations such as bridges, crowns, and dentures will all need to be replaced at some point, so don’t make the mistake of thinking that your restoration is meant to last you for life!

    Myth #6: Bleeding Gums During Pregnancy Is Normal and Doesn’t Require Treatment

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    It’s true that women who are expecting a child are susceptible to changes in hormones which can not only alter bacteria in the oral cavity, but can cause increased blood flow to the gum tissue.

    These changes in the body can result in tender or swollen gum tissue and bleeding when brushing, all of which are symptoms of gum disease. While many of these women will see their symptoms subside after the birth of their child, in the meantime, your smile could be affected.

    Women who are pregnant could have gingivitis, the beginning stage of gum disease. Even though this is considered common, it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t receive treatment to protect your smile—and your baby—in the meantime.

    It’s not only safe to receive treatment for gum disease during pregnancy, but could prevent your child from having a low birth weight and being born premature, two things gum disease has been linked to!

    How Well Do You Take Care of Your Smile?

    Were any of these six myths surprising to you? When your oral health affects not just your appearance but the rest of your bodily health, taking the best possible care of your smile is essential to a long, happy life!

    Contact us at Saunders DDS to schedule an appointment with our oral care team to ensure your smile is healthy. Request an appointment online here or call us at (828) 277-6060. See you soon!

    Have you ever considered getting your teeth whitened?

    A professional teeth whitening involves using a whitening agent to remove stains and brighten your smile. Typically, these appointments only take about an hour to complete at your local Asheville dental practice and can leave you with dazzling white teeth.

    Many patients want whiter teeth but aren’t sure if a professional whitening is for them. Over-the-counter whitening products can take weeks to show any effect and overusing these products can not only be harmful to your teeth, but may not deliver the results you want.

    With a teeth whitening from your dentist in Asheville, you can get dramatic results in just one appointment. While teeth whitening is a cosmetic procedure, it can provide many benefits for your smile and last for years when properly taken care of.

    How can you know if a professional whitening can help your smile? Here we look at common issues people have when seeking a brighter smile and if this procedure can help.

    Teeth Discoloration and Staining

    Teeth discoloration and staining can happen from a variety of causes, including from the foods and drinks we consume. However, discoloration can also happen as the result of taking the antibiotic tetracycline at a young age, smoking, or if the nerve inside your tooth has died due to injury or decay.

    When a Professional Teeth Whitening Helps

    If your teeth staining is due to smoking, foods, or drinks, a professional cleaning in addition to a whitening procedure can help lift both surface stains and deeper stains out of the enamel to give you a brighter smile.

    When Whitening May Not Solve the Problem

    Whitening may not help if your tooth is discolored due to a dead nerve, in which case, root canal therapy would be your only option to restore the color of the tooth.

    In addition, if the staining is very deep, such as from years of smoking or regular coffee drinking, you may need follow-up cleanings or whitening treatments to achieve the results you’re looking for.

    White Spots on Your Teeth: Dental Fluorosis

    Dental fluorosis is a condition in which a child is exposed to too much fluoride before their adult teeth fully erupt through the gumline. This issue prevents the tooth enamel from getting all the nutrients it needs to form properly, and as a result, chalky white spots are present on the teeth.

    When a Professional Whitening Helps

    Fortunately, for patients with mild to moderate dental fluorosis, a professional whitening can reduce the appearance of the white areas on the teeth. You’ll need to schedule a visit with your dentist to determine if teeth whitening will be beneficial for your dental fluorosis.

    When Whitening May Not Solve the Problem

    If your dental fluorosis is severe or widespread in its appearance, you may need to consider other treatment options such as enamel microabrasion, in which a tiny amount of tooth enamel is removed to alleviate staining and white spots that can come with dental fluorosis. Ask your dentist what treatment will benefit you the most!

    Dental Restorations Such as Crowns, Dentures, and Bridges

    Getting your smile restored with a restoration such as dental crowns, dentures, or brides can help improve the function and appearance of your teeth.

    When a Professional Whitening Helps

    The best time to get a professional whitening is before you get any type of restoration dentistry. If you’re considering dental implants, bridges, or crowns and have been thinking about a whiter smile, ask your dentist about a professional whitening beforehand.

    You can still get teeth whitening at your dentist office with your dental restorations, however, the restorations won’t be affected by the whitening agent and so will remain their original color, which could prevent your smile from appearing uniform.

    When Whitening May Not Solve the Problem

    If your dental restoration is discolored, your dentist may be able to remove some of the stains during your professional cleaning; however, you may also need to get the restoration replaced in an effort to improve your smile’s color.

    Fortunately, with at-home care and regular dentist visits, you can prevent the staining that can come with some of these common dental restorations such as dentures to have a brighter smile.

    Cosmetic Issues such as Crooked or Misaligned Teeth

    Crooked or misaligned teeth aren’t always obvious in a smile, but for some patients, they may be concerned about the appearance of their teeth and aren’t sure if a cosmetic procedure such as a professional teeth whitening will help.

    When a Professional Whitening Helps

    While a teeth whitening won’t change your actual tooth structure and alignment, it can benefit patients who may have trouble properly cleaning their teeth to get a really white smile and may even help reduce the appearance of uneven color as the result of crooked teeth in some patients.

    When Whitening May Not Solve the Problem

    If your teeth are severely misaligned or crooked, you may want to consider orthodontic treatment before a professional whitening procedure. However, if you have an event coming up, you might not want to wait for whiter teeth!

    Teeth with Tooth Decay or Gum Disease

    People who have active tooth decay or gum disease will need to receive treatment before getting a professional whitening.

    When a Professional Whitening Helps

    A professional whitening can help patients who have experienced tooth decay and gum disease after they’ve received treatment with their professional Asheville dentist.

    When Whitening May Not Solve the Problem

    If you have discoloration to your teeth due to active tooth decay or gum disease, this is a great opportunity to address issues with your smile so you can get whiter teeth. Afterward, your new shade of white won’t just be beautiful, but healthy too!

    Contact Us at Saunders DDS!

    No matter the results you’re looking to achieve with a brighter smile, your dentist in Asheville, Dr. Saunders, can help you create the smile of your dreams.

    Have you been unhappy with the appearance of your smile but aren’t sure if teeth whitening will help? Schedule an appointment with us at Saunders DDS to discover how much whiter your smile could be with the right treatment!

    With spring in full swing and summer not far away, people are enjoying the weather by spending more time outdoors and planning trips to make the most out of the warmer seasons.

    Did you know that as the seasons change, your oral health can change, too? Whether there are freezing or scorching temperatures, your smile is affected by these changes and the activities that come with each time of year.

    As the summer approaches, here’s what you should know about taking care of your teeth in the warmer weather to support a beautiful and healthy smile all season long!

    Stay Hydrated

    While the truth is that you can become dehydrated at any time, the risk for dehydration increases in the summer.

    It’s important to stay hydrated by drinking water throughout the day, particularly if you have an outdoor occupation, exercise outdoors, or are at greater risk for dehydration. Elderly individuals, infants and children, and people with chronic illnesses are more at risk to become hydrated.

    When you’re dehydrated, your smile, as well as your body, suffers. Your mouth doesn’t have enough saliva when you’re dehydrated, which can lead to an imbalance of bacteria that can cause enamel erosion. People with dry mouth are also more likely to experience tooth decay, gum disease, and bad breath.

    Beware of Summer Drinks

    Summer drinks tend to contain lots of sugar which can be damaging to your oral health. Whether you’re at a barbeque drinking lemonade or by the pool drinking soda, your teeth and gums are affected.

    Alcohol and sports drinks are also corrosive and damaging to teeth. Sports drinks tend to contain a lot of sugar while alcohol is acidic. Don’t be fooled by diet sodas—they can be just as harmful to your tooth enamel as regular soda.

    When you combine sugary and acidic drinks with dry mouth, bacteria have more of an opportunity to destroy tooth enamel. It’s also important to never chew on ice as it can fracture your teeth.

    There are plenty of fresh, healthy summer foods you can eat to replenish your water supply and still enjoy summer, such as watermelon, berries, salad, and tea. Your best bet is to stick to water when it comes to drinking!

    Know That Pool Water Can Stain Your Teeth

    Did you know there’s research showing that more than six hours of swimming in a pool per week increases your risk of teeth staining?

    Swimming in a pool exposes teeth to water that has chemicals in it, which can cause tooth discoloration, especially on the front teeth. Fortunately, the study also showed that proper oral care decreased the risk of staining, as did avoiding foods that can stain teeth including coffee and wine.

    If you love swimming and swim more than six hours a week, you might consider getting professional cleanings more often with your dentist to reduce the risk of discoloration to your pearly whites!

    Protect Sensitive Teeth

    If you have sensitive teeth, you know just how much cold foods like ice cream, popsicles, and even drinks with ice can hurt your smile. These foods and drinks are all too common in the summer months!

    Sensitive teeth, while common, are usually a sign that your tooth enamel has been damaged, so always follow up with your dentist in Asheville to determine what’s causing your sensitivity and what can be done about it.

    In the meantime, you can protect your teeth by using a straw for cold drinks and using caution when eating very cold foods!

    Take Care While on Vacation

    With many people taking vacations during the summer months, it can be easy to fall out of your regular habits. However, it’s important to stick to your oral care routine as much as possible while on vacation. Pack extra toothbrushes just in case someone forgets theirs, and don’t forget the floss!

    It’s also a good idea to know where emergency dentists are when you’ll be away, especially in a different city or country, so keep a list with you. If you’ll be camping, having a dental emergency kit is an even better idea. Don’t take a vacation from your oral care—remember, tooth decay and gum disease won’t take a vacation from harming your smile!

    Watch Out for Tooth Injuries

    In the warmer months, people are more likely to be doing outdoor activities such as hiking, swimming, summer sports, and exercising, so there’s an increased risk of injury to your teeth.

    Remember that small injuries that don’t seem like a big deal now can get worse, especially with repeated harm.

    Even if it’s a small chip or crack in your tooth, you might not realize the pain until hours, days, or even weeks after the injury. It’s important to always wear a mouthguard when applicable and to make your regular checkups with your dentist in Asheville. Dr. Saunders can spot damage to your smile before it has a chance to become an even bigger problem!

    Be Aware of the Warning Signs Your Teeth Have an Issue

    While your teeth and gums will usually tell you if there’s a problem, this isn’t always true. Many times issues such as a cavity won’t show symptoms until it’s become quite advanced.

    However, in the meantime you can look out for:

    • Pain. Whether it’s a toothache, tooth sensitivity, or jaw pain, you should follow up with your dentist and if you can’t get to a dentist, go to the emergency room.

    Many dentists will offer after-hours care for emergency cases or be able to treat dental emergencies during regular office hours.

    • Discoloration. Notice your teeth are looking more yellow or brown? Whether several of your teeth are looking a different color or it’s just one tooth, schedule an appointment with your dentist to ensure your teeth are healthy and to remove staining with a professional cleaning.
    • Sore or bleeding gums. If your gum tissue is irritated or red, this could be a sign of gum disease. While again common, gum disease should always be professionally treated or it will get worse.
    • Bad breath. Bad breath could be from something as simple as not drinking enough water or as complex as a tooth infection. If you have bad breath that won’t go away, it’s time to see your oral healthcare professional.

    While summer certainly brings tons of fun, it can also bring an increased risk for injury and dehydration. It’s important to schedule an appointment with your dentist during the summer months to ensure your smile is healthy. Call us at (828) 277-6060 or fill out our contact form to get in touch. We look forward to making your summer smile beautiful!

    6 Facts About Dental Fillings: Everything You Need to Know

    April 19, 2019
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    A dental filling, sometimes referred to as a dental restoration, is a treatment that repairs missing tooth structure as the result of a cavity. Tooth fillings have come a long way since their inception. Researchers have found evidence that our ancestors attempted to use substances such as beeswax to repair teeth thousands of years ago. […]

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    What’s the Best Way to Care for My New Dentures?

    April 4, 2019
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    Dentures are replacements for natural teeth that can either be full sets (for people who are missing all of their natural teeth) or a partial set (for people who are only missing a few natural teeth). People who may not qualify for dental implants or other restorative dentistry options may choose to get dentures. When […]

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    All About Baby Teeth: Best Practices for Your Child

    February 18, 2019
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    When it comes to caring for your child, healthy teeth are just as important as their overall health. Your child’s primary teeth—also called baby teeth—play an instrumental role in their adult smile. During your child’s lifetime, they’ll grow up to 32 teeth in their mouth and use these teeth to help them speak and chew […]

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    Is It Time for a Smile Makeover in 2019?

    December 18, 2018
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    When you’re making New Year’s Resolutions this year, chances are you’ve made some commitments to live healthier. Perhaps you’ve resolved to better manage your stress, eat more vegetables, or visit your dentist every six months. Either way, the New Year is a time to start fresh. If you’re unhappy with your smile, it’s time to […]

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    Avoid Dental Emergencies This Holiday with These Tips

    December 6, 2018
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    It’s officially holiday season and people are preparing to enjoy this time of year and all that it offers. From spending time with family and friends to taking vacation time, the holidays provide people with a chance to catch up with loved ones and relax. No one wants to deal with a dental emergency this […]

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    Common Symptoms That Could Mean Your Bite Is Misaligned

    November 20, 2018
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    There are several different types of misaligned bites, also called malocclusions. Malocclusions are responsible for a number of different dental health symptoms people may experience due to their teeth not aligning properly. People may have an underbite, an overbite, a crossbite, or an open bite. These types of malocclusions tend to be common, with most […]

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    Why Are My Gums Receding? And Other Periodontal FAQs

    November 7, 2018
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    Gum tissue is an essential part of our smiles. Our gums not only help to support our teeth, but also prevent bacteria from reaching our tooth roots. When gum tissue begins to pull back from the teeth, it can result in painful sensitivity, infection, and even tooth loss. Since gum disease affects nearly half of […]

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    Surprising Health Issues Your Dental Exam Can Uncover

    October 17, 2018
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    Most people know they should be getting a dental exam regularly. While every patient will differ on how often they need to come in, a general rule is every six months to one year. However, many patients don’t realize exactly how important a dental exam is for their health. Yes, a dental exam can prevent […]

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    How Does Oral Health Change During Pregnancy? Top Concerns to Be Aware Of

    October 2, 2018
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    Pregnancy can be an exciting yet challenging time. During this busy time of keeping up with appointments, taking care of yourself, and preparing for the new arrival, many women don’t give much thought to their oral health during their nine months being pregnant. However, oral health during pregnancy deserves more attention than you think. Hormone […]

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    Does My Child Really Need a Custom Mouthguard?

    September 18, 2018
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    Fall sports are well underway with the most popular sports—soccer, football, lacrosse, and wrestling—all requiring a mouthguard for your child’s participation. When it comes to purchasing the right mouthguard for your child, how can you be sure that you’re getting the right one? Of course, there are the mouthguards from sporting stores that cost little […]

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