Bad Breath | Why Are We Supposed to Brush Our Tongue?

Germs that can create gingivitis, tooth decay and gum disease live in groups. When these groups of germs are broken up by brushing they become much less problematic. These groups of germs not only have the ability to create dental health issues, but they also produce foul odors. An unclean tongue can be the reason for halitosis, or bad breath, since these odors are produced by germs.

Cleaning your tongue is one of the best ways to fight bad breath as well as the harmful germs in your mouth that can cause tooth decay and gum disease. Sometimes, a tongue scraper may be recommended to help prevent halitosis. One of the best times to brush your tongue is in the morning when you brush your teeth.

Some quick brushing tips:

Tilt the brush at a 45-degree angle against the gumline and sweep or roll the brush away from gumline.

Gently brush the outside, inside and chewing surface of each tooth using short back-and-forth strokes.

Gently brush your tongue to remove bacteria and freshen breath.

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Are you concerned about bad breath?

If you experience bad breath, do not ignore it. Bad breath can be linked to a number of dental health issues. Schedule an appointment with Dr. Aerni in Strongsville, OH to discuss proper hygiene and treatment for bad breath.

Why Do People Seem to Get More Cavities As They Get Old?

Saliva is highly important for maintaining the acid/base balance in your mouth. Saliva is produced by salivary glands which we find in our cheeks and under the tongue. These glands create two types of saliva, serous saliva, and mucoid saliva.

Serous saliva is the wet and watery form and mucoid saliva is more thick and sticky. Mucoid saliva provides proteins that are key in the beginning stages of digesting our food. Serous saliva mostly creates chemicals to buffer your mouth.

As we get older, serous saliva production slowly decreases. When we do not have enough serous saliva, we experience xerostomia, also called dry mouth. Our mouths become more acidic as a result of dry mouth, and acidity is what causes tooth decay.

Xerostomia is also a result of things such as medication and chemotherapy. Because chemotherapy slows the multiplication of rapidly reproducing cells, the cells in the salivary gland are affected.

The best thing you can do for your mouth is to get regular dental exams and maintain proper at-home care, including brushing and flossing. The mouth goes through changes as we age, and your dentist can offer some advice to fight the effects of dry mouth which may include frequent fluoride treatments and fluoride toothpaste. 

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Are you concerned about cavities?

If you would like to learn more about cavity prevention and care for dry mouth, be sure to schedule an appointment with Dr. Aerni to discuss what can be done to keep your mouth and teeth healthy.

Health and Wellness | Can Your Dentist Help Treat Headaches?

Headaches are, unfortunately, a part of life. They are caused by a number of things, which include:

Hormones

Abnormal Growths

Teeth grinding/clenching

Improper muscle function

When you think of treating a headache, most people picture going to the doctor or stopping by the drug store and getting some medicine. But did you know that your dentist can actually help you treat them and offer some relief?

Yes, your dentist!

A lot of people experience headaches because of neck or jaw muscle spasms, or from clenching or grinding their teeth. If your dentist finds that this is the cause of your headaches, special mouth guards can be made for you to wear during the night. These mouth guards offer your jaw an area to rest against, which will keep your muscles from spasming.

It has been found that about 70% of individuals grind their teeth or clench their jaw, so if you experience frequent headaches your dentist will be able to offer you some relief.

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If you have visited your primary care physician for headaches but still experience them, a visit to the dentist may be able to find things your doctor could not.

Do you experience frequent headaches?

If so, schedule an appointment with Dr. Aerni in Strongsville, OH to see if teeth grinding or clenching is the reason for your discomfort.

Dentistry Throughout the Ages

A Worm, A Queen & A Barber Pole: Dentistry Throughout the Ages

When you think of history you probably have visions of wars, empires, and kings and queens. Most of us do not think about what a trip to the dentist was like, but it is actually quite interesting when you learn about some of the ancient forms of dentistry.

Below, we have listed some of the most bizarre and interesting facts about dentistry through the ages.

The first recorded “dentist” was an Egyptian by the name of Hesy-Ra in 2600 BC.

Aristotle had written about an ancient form of braces that would straighten a person’s teeth.

There was an old belief of something called a “dental worm,” this worm was believed to burrow into teeth, causing sharp pain. So to combat this worm, Queen Elizabeth ingested large amounts of sugar which is why many people believe her teeth were discolored.

The first bristle toothbrush is believed to have been invented during the Tang Dynasty in China. This toothbrush is not like our modern day brushes; the bristles were made from hogs hair!

Dental implants in the Maya Civilization were made from seashells.

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Barbers were actually part of the dentistry world at one point. Between the 5th and 15th century, “barber-surgeons” were able to perform many types of surgeries in their shops or on the battlefield.

Luckily for everyone, dentistry has evolved to a medically-backed and safe form of health care.

Looking for a dentist in the Strongsville, OH area?

Dr. Aerni in Strongsville, OH is always welcoming new patients to his practice. If you would like to schedule an appointment, click here.

Improve Your Oral Health With These Foods

Taking care of your teeth through brushing and flossing is critical to your dental hygiene, but there are some foods that can also improve your oral health. In our newest blog, we will examine a few foods that are good for your teeth and mouth.

Ideally, you want to stay away from food that uses sugars, acid, and anything that is sticky. Sugar and acid feed the cavity forming plaque in your mouth, and it may attack your teeth even after you have finished eating!

To begin our list of foods that are good for your oral health, let’s look at cheese. Cheese, as we all know, is a great source of calcium. Cheese is also low in sugars and acid, making it an ideal choice for a healthy snack. It also includes a protein called “casein” which is found in milk and helps reinforce the surface of your teeth.

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Sugarless gum is also a great alternative to gum containing sugar. Brands such as B-Fresh, Spry, and Trident all have an artificial sweetener called “xylitol.” It is important to know that not all sugar-free gum includes xylitol. Xylitol actually prevents bacteria from sticking to your teeth, helping fight against tooth decay. So if you love chewing gum, do your teeth a favor and make sure it includes xylitol.

Although not a food, tap water can help protect your teeth from cavities. Tap water, for the most part, has fluoride in it and fluoride is crucial in fighting cavities. It is important to note that anyone that is 16 years or older does not receive the benefits from digesting fluoride (though rinsing with it after brushing still helps), so this would be a good way for children to help protect their teeth.

Pears are another food that is not only healthy but good for your teeth! Pears are better than some other fruits when it comes to your teeth because pears have more of a neutralizing effect on acid.

Our last food on this list is Yogurt. Similar to cheese, yogurt includes casein, calcium, and phosphates which help remineralize your teeth.

Snacking does not need to involve unhealthy foods, there are many things you can fight hunger with that also aid in a healthy mouth.

Are you in need of a professional teeth cleaning?

If you would like to schedule your appointment for a dental exam and cleaning in Strongsville, OH, be sure to click here!