Find out how your daily dental routine along with professional dental cleanings can help you maintain good oral health.
Benjamin Franklin once said that, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” Our Bothell, WA, family dentist, Dr. Kimberly Chapman, believes wholeheartedly that preventing dental problems is far better than having to treat issues in the future (and not to mention, it is far less expensive!)
Here’s what preventive dentistry entails and why it’s so important:
- Brushing at least twice a day, and most importantly after the last food is eaten before bedtime,
- Flossing once a day, with dental floss and not just floss picks,
- Dental sealants for teeth with deep grooves,
- Fluoride for people who are at increased risk for decay,
- Visiting your dentist regularly - studies show people who have regular preventive care wind up needing less dental treatment in their lifetimes
- Eating a healthy diet - A diet low in carbohydrates is associated with far fewer cavities. This includes minimizing your intake of breads, pastas, rice, chips, crackers, etc. It is not just candies, sodas and sweets that contribute to decay!
Want to remove plaque and food from your teeth and gumline? The easiest way to do this is by brushing. You should be brushing at least twice a day. If your toothbrush doesn’t offer an automatic timer, set a timer for two minutes to make sure you are brushing long enough. Most songs on the radio last about 2 minutes, so this can be a good timer as well.
Even though brushing cleans many of the tooth’s surfaces, it does NOT get in between teeth. Up to 40% of the surface areas of a tooth is not reached with a toothbrush. This is why flossing should always be part of your oral routine. The good news is that most people only have to floss once a day to keep teeth and gums healthy and clean. People with moderate to severe gum disease may need to floss twice a day, depending on the recommendations of their dentist.
When you come in for your routine cleanings, our Bothell dentist will determine whether or not your smile could benefit from preventive sealants. Children, teens, and at-risk adults benefit from dental sealants, which can seal out plaque, bacteria and food from molars to prevent cavities. Why wait until there is a cavity, when you can prevent one? Again, "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure."
While daily at-home care is important, nothing replaces visiting us every six months. Professional cleanings are able to remove decay, plaque and tartar that patients cannot access by themselves. Exams with Dr. Kimberly Chapman will reveal early signs of decay, gum disease or infection, and x-rays can pinpoint potential problems that we may not be able to see through a physical exam alone.
What you eat also impacts your oral health. A good rule of thumb: If the foods you consume are healthy and nourishing for your body they will most likely be beneficial for your smile. Stay away from carbs, sugars (both simple sugars and processed sugars), and instead load up on whole grains, lean sources of protein, healthy fats, and fruits, nuts, and vegetables.
* * Remember : a human tooth submerged in a glass of almost any carbonated soft drink will dissolve into nothing within 24-48 hours! Dr. Chapman recommends limiting your carbonated beverage intake to 2-3 beverages per week or less. Plain water (with cucumber or mint for those who need some flavor) is the best option for good oral health, and total body health. * *
The list above is a good reminder that even those who brush and floss regularly and maintain good oral hygiene on their own still need to visit our Bothell, WA, general dentist Dr. Kimberly Chapman to make sure that there are no issues. Most dental disease is silent, and by the time people feel symptoms it may be too late.
Let us help you get that ounce of prevention!
Are you looking for a way to straighten and improve your smile? Dr. Kimberly A. Chapman, your family dentist in Bothell, Washington offers Invisalign, an innovative orthodontic treatment that can help you straighten your teeth with minimal to no discomfort.
How does Invisalign work?
Traditional braces use a system of wires and brackets to move teeth. Tightening the wires periodically helps align and straighten teeth, but the process can be a little painful. There are no wires and brackets with Invisalign. Clear plastic aligners gradually move teeth instead. Your Bothell dentist designs a series of aligner trays for you using a 3-D image created by combining images, X-rays and impressions of your mouth. Every two weeks, you'll begin wearing a new set of aligners.
Invisalign is a more comfortable option
Your Invisalign aligners are made of soft, comfortable plastic. Since they're custom-made for your mouth, they won't irritate your sensitive gums or mouth.
Invisalign is a virtually unnoticeable option
Appearance is one the chief concerns when people consider traditional braces. Once you receive your braces, they can stay on your teeth for up to two years or more. They're obvious in photographs and make enjoying dinner at special events a little challenging, depending on the menu. Because Invisalign aligners are clear, most people won't even notice that you're wearing them. If you're attending a special event, you can even remove them for a few hours without a problem.
A variety of foods must be avoided if you wear traditional braces, such as hard fruits and vegetables, corn on the cob, spare ribs, and other foods that that can damage wires. Sticky candy and gum can become caught in braces and must be avoided. It takes a tremendous amount of willpower to stay away from your favorite foods, even if you know that they can damage your braces. When you wear Invisalign aligners, you'll remove your trays to eat and won't have to avoid ANY foods!
Homecare brushing and flossing also needs to be done differently to adequately clean around brackets and wires. You cannot floss between teeth without the aid of certain floss threaders when you have wires. With Invisalign, you simply brush and floss normally once you have easily removed your aligners.
Straightening your teeth doesn't have to be painful and awkward. Find out if Invisalign is a good option for you by calling Dr. Kimberly A. Chapman in Bothell, Washington. We are waiting to help you, so please call (425) 488-6120 to schedule an appointment.
What your family dentist in Bothell, Washington, wants you to know :
(What Happens In Your Mouth Does NOT Stay in Your Mouth!)
A daily dental regimen is a vital part of taking care of your smile, preserving your oral health, and your overall body health. Dr. Kimberly A. Chapman, your family dentist in Bothell, Washington, wants to share with you how to develop healthy habits, and maintain your beautiful smile for life.
First, let’s look at why you need a dental regimen. The goal is to remove plaque every day, because plaque contains bacteria. When combined with the sugars from the foods you eat, these bacteria produce acids that are strong enough to destroy the hardest tissue in your body - your enamel. Enamel does not regrow, and after the age of 6, we do not make anymore enamel.
When you brush and floss regularly, you are removing these bacteria, and helping prevent plaque and acids from causing damage to enamel and causing gum disease. The longer plaque is allowed to remain on your teeth, the more decay and gum disease it may cause.
A great dental regimen doesn’t need to take a long time and should be very simple. It does take practice to do correctly though, so don't give up! Keep practicing. Dr. Chapman wants you to remember to:
- Brush your teeth after breakfast (not before) and before bedtime, using a soft or extra-soft bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste. Some people may even need to brush after lunch.
- A soft or extra soft toothbrush is very important because it will be gentle on your teeth and gums. Medium and hard bristle brushes should be THROWN AWAY or only used to clean the grout in your shower. They are very damaging to teeth and gums.
- The very best toothbrush is a sonic toothbrush used properly - by holding it like a pencil, not in your palm, and not by scrubbing.
- Fluoride is important because it strengthens your enamel and can prevent tooth decay. People who have had a cavity within the last 3 years are at an increased risk for future cavities due to the bacterial populations present. Fluoride is needed even more for those individuals. The benefits of fluoride were discovered in natural water sources that had fluoride already occurring in them. People drinking from those water sources developed far fewer cavities, and this is still seen today in dental offices. Someone who drank fluoridated water from birth to age 6 will have fewer cavities in their lifetime that an individual who did not have fluoride in their water, when other factors are similarly controlled for. Just like any element, plant, herb or drug, there is a beneficial amount but too much can be harmful. Even drinking too much plain water can be lethal.
- Floss your teeth at least once every day. Brushing alone doesn’t clean between your teeth where many cavities start. Use a single piece of floss (waxed or unwaxed, whatever your prefer) to floss between each tooth, curving around each tooth surface toward the front and back of the contact where the floss goes into. You can also use floss picks or threaders if you have arthritis or dexterity issues, but remember that they aren't curved and therefore do not clean the curved surfaced as well between teeth as good old fashioned floss.
- You must include regular dental visits as part of your dental regimen. Dental examinations and x-rays are often the only way to tell if you have decay or dental problems before they become major, such as something starting to hurt or breaking. An exam with x-rays can identify problems while they can still be fixed with a small filling, instead of needing more expensive and invasive treatments like crowns or root canals. You should visit your dentist at least every six months for professional hygiene cleanings, and at least yearly for an exam and x-rays. Many people need to have their cleanings more frequently such as every 3 or months, in order to appropriately treat and prevent recurrence of their gum disease.
A thorough daily dental regimen is necessary to enjoy good dental health. No one wants to experience the unexpected crisis of a broken tooth, or waking up with a toothache, swollen face or jaw one morning. Dental disease is largely silent until there is a significant problem, so don't let the absence of symptoms fool you. Take care of yourself, and see a dentist regularly.
And don't forget - good dental health is necessary for good overall health! There is a growing body of scientific evidence linking poor oral health to increased risks for conditions like cardiac disease, stroke, Alzheimer's, and diabetes. This is because of shared pathways in chronic inflammatory conditions. We have one immune system in our body, and when there is infection or inflammation anywhere, it affects our entire immune system. Unlike Las Vegas, what happens in your mouth doesn't stay in your mouth!
Dr. Chapman wants to partner with you to ensure you have a healthy, beautiful smile, and have the best total body health. Call Dr. Kimberly A. Chapman, your family dentist in Bothell, Washington at (425) 488-6120 for more information today.
All is not lost if you are dealing with tooth loss. Find out how you can restore your smile with dental implants.
Just because you are dealing with a missing tooth doesn’t mean that you have to give up on having a great smile. While it can feel rather defeating or embarrassing to have one or more gaps in your smile, know that our Bothell, Washington dentist Dr. Kimberly A. Chapman is here to help. Find out how a dental implant can replace your missing tooth for good.
Whether you are someone who just needs to replace a single missing tooth or you are unhappy with how your dentures fit, dental implants might be the best option for you. Made from durable titanium, implants are small post-like screws that naturally integrate into the jawbone in order to replace the missing tooth’s roots. Without the constant stimulation that a tooth provides, the jawbone begins to deteriorate, affecting your facial structure, your bite, and even how you chew or speak. Implants are the only tooth replacement option that actually prevent jawbone deterioration by stimulating the bone beneath them.
Once the implant is anchored into the jawbone (a natural process called osseointegration), our Bothell, Washington dentist can now place an abutment on top of the implant. An abutment is made from either porcelain or metal and is designed to attach the implant, which lies under the gums, with the visible dental crown or other dental restoration (e.g. dentures). Implants are versatile because they can either replace just a single missing tooth or all of your teeth by supporting dentures.
While dental implants offer a lot of advantages that other tooth loss treatments don’t, this treatment may not be right for everyone. Dental implants are ideal for people who maintain good oral health, who are in good health, as well as those who have strong underlying bone in their jaw.
Dr. Kimberly A. Chapman is here to provide you with all the dental care and treatments you need to get your smile looking and feeling its best. If you want to learn more about dental implants and whether they are right for you, then please call our Bothell, Washington dental office today at (425) 488 6120. We look forward to speaking with you!
How your dentist in Bothell, Washington can help your smile
Tooth enamel is the strongest substance in the human body, but it can still be damaged from wear-and-tear or decay. As we all age, our teeth may begin to look worn down, cracked or chipped. You may even have broken a tooth and had it repaired with silver metal fillings. While these types of fillings solve some problems, they can also create others.
Silver (amalgam) fillings are metal, and metals expand and contract with temperatures more than tooth structure does. Over time, this can promote cracking of the tooth surrounding the metal filling. Silver amalgam fillings can also darken teeth by a process called oxidation, or basically tarnishing or rusting. Teeth can start to look bluish, grapy, or even black because of these types of fillings, making you feel self-conscious about your smile.
You don’t have to live with a smile that is less than beautiful. The answer may be dental crowns! Dr. Kimberly A. Chapman in Bothell, Washington wants to help you discover what crowns can do for your smile.
A dental crown encases your entire tooth, covering it like a suit of armor. A dental crown protects your tooth from biting and chewing forces that can cause an unprotected tooth to fracture. Your dentist in Bothell, Washington wants you to know, crowns aren’t just for protection. Today’s crowns are cosmetically beautiful too! They are made from high-tech, sophisticated porcelain materials that look completely natural and blend with your smile. Your friends will notice your smile, not your dental work!
Your dentist in Bothell Washington also offers a full range of conventional materials for your new crown, each with its own advantages. You can consider:
- A full gold crown, which is the strongest crown and is perfect for back teeth where you need strength for chewing;
- A porcelain-fused-to-metal crown also known as a PFM crown, which has the strength of metal, but also the beauty of porcelain; these crowns are suitable for almost any location in your mouth;
- A full porcelain crown, which is a cosmetically beautiful choice because porcelain reflects light just like your natural teeth; this is a perfect choice for teeth that are visible when you smile.
Dental crowns can restore full chewing function and also provide you with a beautiful smile, free of huge, dark metal fillings. You owe it to yourself to discover what crowns can do for your smile. Call Dr. Kimberly A. Chapman in Bothell, Washington to find out more about dental crowns. Call today, and get ready for your new smile!
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