In: Oral Health
October 30, 2015
Those undergoing cancer treatment have to endure a lot – the path to better health is a difficult one. But there is one aspect of cancer treatment that isn’t widely known: how it negatively affects dental health, including the teeth, gums, salivary glands and other oral tissues.
When there are pre-existing dental issues such as cavities, abscesses, or gingivitis, the infection may become worse during treatment. Gums are more likely to become swollen and painful, with a higher probability of bleeding. Mouth sores may also occur during chemotherapy, and other mouth irritations often worsen.
These side effects can be painful, but there are ways to minimize & prevent them. As October is Breast Cancer Awareness month, we’ve compiled the information you need to know about dental health during cancer treatments.
- Medication: There are specific medications that can ease discomfort and prevent sores – these can be prescribed by a doctor. Pain medicine, such as Tylenol or stronger, may also be used. Always avoid using aspirin or non-steroidal medication (Advil, Motrin) during chemotherapy, as they can cause bleeding. For dry mouth, artificial saliva can be helpful.
- Work with your dental professional: Your dental hygienist and oncologist can work together to make you as comfortable as possible. Continuing with regularly-scheduled dental appointments so your hygienist can monitor your oral comfort and make changes as required is also important.
- Oral health routine: Unless otherwise recommended, continue to gently brush teeth twice per day with fluoride toothpaste, and gently floss once a day. If gums are sore or bleeding, avoid those areas but continue to floss the remainder of your teeth.
- Stay hydrated: Drinking at least eight glasses of water or juices daily can be helpful with many dental side effects including dry mouth, or xerostomia. Using lip balm can help prevent your lips from cracking, and cool mist humidifier will add much-needed needed moisture to your home.
- Food & drink: There are certain foods that you may want to avoid, such as spicy dishes, and anything that is difficult to chew. Tomato and citrus juices will also irritate any mouth sores you may have. Avoiding caffeinated and alcoholic beverages is a smart idea, as they both promote mouth dryness. Some find that chewing sugarless gum or is helpful with their dry mouth.
With these tips and ongoing care from your dental professionals at DentalX, we can ensure that you are as comfortable as possible during treatment. Feel free to share this post during Breast Cancer Awareness month, and help others take the necessary steps to prevent these oral health side effects.
October 30, 2015
It’s hard to believe, but Halloween is already here. Children all over North America will be dressing up and heading door-to-door to collect treats from their neighbours. For a child it’s a fun an exciting holiday, getting to wear a costume and receive free candy! And while it’s fun for parents as well, it can also create some concern. How do you allow your child to enjoy their Halloween without worrying about the dental health risks?
We have some tips to ensure that your kids make the most of their Halloween, while keeping up their dental routine and staying cavity-free:
- Make sure that they continue to brush their teeth before bedtime. This is most important when Halloween candy is involved, as you want the sugars to be brushed away so they won’t sit on the teeth overnight.
- Keep up with daily flossing. While brushing is effective for little ones, flossing is important to clean between their teeth and avoid gum disease.
- Allow your children to eat only a piece or two of candy at a time. To avoid sugar overload, on the teeth and otherwise, keeping the Halloween loot as a special treat will also make the candy last longer.
- Ensure that they are not chomping down on hard candies, as this can break or damage a tooth.
- Keep the healthy snacks in rotation. Even though your kids have all these wonderful treats, it’s still important to keep fruits and vegetables in the mix. Not only are these healthy overall, they also help to clean teeth and neutralize harmful bacteria.
With these tips, you can keep you children’s teeth healthy while they enjoy their trick-or-treat goodies. Happy Halloween, everyone!
August 4, 2015
We use our toothbrushes everyday, hopefully more than once a day, and we count on these tools to help us keep our teeth clean and healthy. But are we taking the best care of them?
Toothbrushes can be breeding grounds for bacteria and germs, so it’s important to rinse them well after brushing, and then keep them stored in an upright position to allow them to dry between uses. Proper drying helps to prevent bacteria from growing on the bristles.
If you or your family members are sick, ensure that none of the toothbrushes touch if they are stored together. As we mentioned above, germs can easily spread on a damp toothbrush, and can also spread from brush to brush. Separating the brushes will help keep the rest of you family members healthy.
Your toothbrush should be changed every 3 months or so, but it is also a good idea to replace your brush after an illness, to be safe. If your bristles are no longer straight before those three months are up, you may be brushing too hard or using the wrong kind of toothbrush – be sure to talk to your dentist about the best type for your oral health needs.
June 18, 2015
In case you’ve missed it, our CEO and Registered Dental Hygienist Anaida Deti has been staying busy. Not only by working with Dental-X patients and keeping their smiles healthy, but she’s also had appearances on TV and radio, as well as in articles, sharing her dental expertise.
Here are a few of the places you may have seen Anaida recently:
This Parents Canada article from May 25, 2015 featured expert advice from Anaida:
On February 17, 2015, as Finalist of the 2015 Mompreneur Award of Excellence, Anaida appeared on Rogers Daytime Toronto:
May 25, 2015
One of the best parts about warmer weather is the tasty cold treats – who doesn’t enjoy popsicles, ice cream, or an icy drink to cool us down? But for those that suffer from tooth sensitivity, those treats can cause a great deal of pain. And if you’re one of the sufferers, read on – we have some tips to help you with those painful sensitive teeth:
Use Toothpaste for Sensitive Teeth
Sensitivity is a common occurrence, and so there are many toothpastes available that help. Ask your dentist which brand they recommend, or visit your local drug store and compare.
Switch to a Soft Toothbrush
Your toothbrush may be too hard for your sensitive teeth. Opt for one with softer bristles – they’re even recommended for those without tooth sensitivity.
Avoid Acidic Foods
Fruit, fruit juices, colas and other highly acidic food wears down the enamel on your teeth, causing that painful sensitivity. Try to avoid these items to help keep your tooth enamel strong.
Use a Straw
If you’re going to take the plunge and drink those cold or acidic drinks, try using a straw to minimize the contact to your teeth.
Visit Your Dental Professional
We’re here to help, no matter what dental problems you may have! Call us at 647-839-1374 and book an appointment today.