How to Make the Most of Your Dental Visits

FOR THE AVERAGE PERSON, you only see your dentist twice a year. While you may think going to the dentist simply requires you to show up and open wide, it’s important to take advantage of each and every dental visit!

We want to answer your questions and address your concerns. Here are some easy tips that will help you maximize your time with the dentist and make the most out of your biannual visits.

Make a Checklist of Questions and Concerns

It’s easy to forget about all the questions you’ve had about your oral health over the past couple of months when you’re sitting in the dental chair. Writing a checklist or note beforehand of things you’d like to ask us or talk to us about can help you remember! For example, have you experienced bleeding while brushing or any new pain or sensitivity? Are there any wounds in your mouth that haven’t healed normally? Let us know–we’re here to help!

You May Even Have a Fun Question Like This!

Keep Us Updated

You’ve probably heard of something called the mouth-body connection. It simply means that your oral health and overall health are strongly connected. This is why it is important that your dentist knows your complete medical history.

Alert your dentist if you are pregnant or have been diagnosed with diabetes or other illnesses since your last visit. Inform them of any new medications you are taking. Certain illnesses and medications can increase your risk of dental problems and disease. The more your dentist knows about your health, the more personalized your care will be.

Connect With Us On Social Media

We use social media to connect with our patients and facilitate one-on-one relationships with them! Since we only see some of you every six months, our social media tools–like our blog and Facebook page–help us stay in touch.  You can find us on Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest, too!

We try to provide you with relevant and easily accessible information on our social media platforms so you can be informed about both your dental health and our services. Like us on Facebook to learn more and feel free to comment or leave us a private message. Your relationship is important to us!

Thank You!

We can’t say it enough… Thank you, valued patients and friends! We love seeing you healthy and happy!

Image by Flickr user Antonio García-Melgares Hernández used under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 license. Image cropped and modified from original.

The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

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10 Fun Dental Facts You Probably Didn’t Know!

THE TRUTH IS, our teeth are amazing! Without them we wouldn’t be able to speak, eat, sing, or smile properly. We’d like to celebrate our teeth by sharing some interesting dental facts you may not have known!

Here Are 10 Fun Dental Facts

  1. If you’ve been using floss daily, by the end of the year the total length will be the perimeter of a baseball diamond! Is your floss going to make it to home plate?
  2. Because birds lack teeth, many swallow stones or grits to aid in breaking up hard foods.
  3. On average, women smile 62 times a day and men only eight times a day. Step it up, guys!
  4. The average American spends 38.5 total days brushing their teeth in their lifetime.
  5. Only 40 percent of young people age six to 19 have had cavities in their life. That’s down from 50 percent a decade ago!
  6. In the middle ages, people thought that a dog’s tooth boiled in wine made an excellent mouth rinse to prevent tooth decay. Tasty!
  7. The Egyptian plover, also known as the crocodile bird, is famous for flying into crocodile mouths and cleaning their teeth.
  8. Prior to the 1850s, ‘toothpastes’ were usually powders and contained soap and chalk.
  9. An obscure law in Vermont states that it is illegal for women to wear false teeth without the written permission of their husband. Crazy!
  10. Different animals have different amounts of teeth; armadillos have 104, pigs have 44, and humans have 32.

Another cool fact: the narwhal’s tusk Is actually a tooth!

How Many Of These Facts Have You Heard Before?

It’s always fun to learn about the obscure facts and crazy history that make up our tooth trivia! Do you know any other cool dental facts? Comment below or on our Facebook page! And remember, take care of your teeth. They do so much for you!

We are grateful for our awesome patients!

Image by Flickr user la vaca vegetariana used underCreative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 license. Image cropped and modified from original.

The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

Care After Wisdom Teeth Removal

WE ARE OFTEN ASKED questions about wisdom tooth extraction and how to best care for your teeth and mouth after surgery. As your trusted dental practice, we’re here to calm your fears and address your concerns!

Steps To Take To Promote Healing

There are several reasons why people may need to get their wisdom teeth removed. Here are some things you can do after the procedure to facilitate healing:

  • Rest: Rest for the remainder of the day after surgery and as needed after that. Avoid strenuous activity for at least a week.
  • Eat soft foods: For the first 24 hours, eat only soft foods such as yogurt, ice cream, or applesauce. Broth-based soups without many chunks are good to eat 1 to 2 days after the procedure. Avoid chewy or hard foods for 1 to 2 weeks.
  • Drink water: Drink plenty of water and avoid alcoholic, caffeinated, and hot beverages in the first 24 to 48 hours.
  • Take your meds:  For the first 24 to 48 hours take your pain medication as prescribed.  The best way to keep pain to  a minimum is to stay ahead of it.  If you wait until you are in pain it is more difficult to eliminate it.
  • Brush:  Continue to brush normally.  Be gentle close to the areas of the surgery, but  keep those teeth and gums healthy.  Brushing your tongue will also help keep you mouth fresh.  Avoid harsh rinses and only rinse after 24 hours have passed.

Prevent Dry Socket

After wisdom teeth removal, preventing dry socket is important. When a tooth is extracted, a blood clot forms to protect the bones and nerves underneath. Dry socket occurs when the blood clot is dislodged, exposing the bone and nerves. This condition can be avoided if the proper precautions are taken after tooth extraction.

These three tips will best help prevent dry socket:

  1. Do not smoke!  Hopefully ever again, but if it is not your time to quit, refrain for at least 48 hours.  Smoking is by far the most common cause of dry socket.
  2. Avoid using a straw for at least 48 hours.  The suction created in the mouth when drinking through a straw can dislodge a blood clot and lead to dry socket.
  3. Avoid rinsing for 24 hours.  After the first 24 hours a warm salt water rinse is a great way to help with healing.  Avoid harsh rinses with a high alcohol content.

We’re Here For You

Our job is to make the healing process easy and comfortable for you. Call us or set up an appointment if you have any questions about wisdom teeth removal or would like to discuss your options! We are here for YOU.

We love our patients!

Image by Flickr user m01229 used under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 license. Image cropped and modified from original.

The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

Spring Is Here! Our Dental Assistants are Excited

SPRING HAS SPRUNG here at Cornerstone Dental Associates! The beautiful sunshine, blooming flowers, and warmer weather have us feeling grateful for this wonderful season.

To welcome the incoming spring, we’d like to share what puts a spring in our step this time of year!

What We Love About Spring

We asked all of our wonderful, awesome, super spectacular Dental Assistants how they feel about Spring and here is what they shared with us!
From Angie:  My favorite thing about Spring is that everything is new.  The brightness of the flowers, the green of the trees, even the sky seems to be a little more Carolina blue.  In the Spring my favorite activity is working in the yard enjoying all these new changes.

From Ericka:  I love the warmer weather and sunshine because it puts me in a better mood and the longer days make me more productive and not so lazy.  I like to take my doggies outside and take rides on the lake in my boat.

From Kelly:  I love the warmer weather and more daylight time so I can play outside and do all sorts of outdoor activities with my young daughter.  Our favorite activities include walks where I pull her in her wagon and taking a trip to go and feed the ducks.

From Stephanie:  My favorite thing about Spring is the longer days, the warmer weather, and the beautiful Spring flowers at my house and out my great window at the office.  I enjoy Spring because I get the opportunity to play with my little girl outside after work and we have lots of fun days at the park or going on new adventures.

From Susan:  Daylight savings time that starts this weekend is by far my favorite thing about Spring.  I love all the extra time it gives me outdoors for when I am camping and fishing.  Once the sunsets though I love a cozy campfire and marshmallows to roast.  A good book read outside is fun too.

Is Spring YOUR Favorite Season?

Do you love spring as much as we do? Let us know in the comments below or reach out to us on Facebook! As always, we’re so thankful for you and appreciate your loyalty to our practice.

Happy Spring!

Image by Flickr user Keromi Keroyama used underCreative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 license. Image cropped and modified from original.

The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

Tooth Fairy Traditions

THE TOOTH FAIRY is one of many childhood fantasy figures we remember fondly. We lost our baby teeth, stuck them under our pillow, and the mysterious tooth fairy would swap our teeth out for money! What could be better?

The tooth fairy isn’t quite the same for everyone though! The legend of the tooth fairy has changed over the years and even varies widely around the world. Let’s learn a little bit more about other tooth fairy traditions!

The Tooth Fairy Legend Began With Ancient Superstitions

Before the tooth fairy went looking under our pillow for baby teeth, she used to look in the ground! In early Europe, burying or burning baby teeth was a precaution taken against witches. It was believed that if a witch got a hold of one of your teeth, they could have complete power over you!

Along with a fear of witches, children were instructed to burn their teeth so that they could have a peaceful afterlife. It was believed that if a tooth wasn’t incinerated, the person would be doomed to spend eternity searching for them.

The Vikings didn’t want to destroy baby teeth, however. They even paid for them! In Norse culture, children’s teeth were believed to bring good luck in battle, so many warriors had necklaces made of children’s fallen out teeth!

Before A Fairy, There Was A Mouse

More recently we’ve seen the development of monetary gifts as a reward for a lost tooth. But not all tooth fairies are pixies with wings… In many Latin countries the tooth fairy is a mouse named Raton Perez! He also retrieves the teeth from under a pillow and leaves money or a gift in return.

How Our Modern Tooth Fairy Came To Be

As with many American traditions, the tooth fairy has roots in European folklore. Instead of burying our teeth in the ground, we “bury” our teeth under our pillow! It is said that our modern conception of the tooth fairy came about in the early 1900s. With the help of Walt Disney’s beloved fairy characters, the idea of a tooth fairy gained popularity and became what it is today!

The Tooth Fairy Plays An Important Role For Children

The legend of the tooth fairy is likely still so prevalent because it helps comfort children when they lose their teeth, an experience that can be traumatic for some. The tooth fairy helps them see this big step as a positive experience and a sign that they are growing up!

As your trusted dental professionals, we want what is best for you and your kids. If you have any questions or concerns about your child’s teeth, call or come into our office!

Thank you for all that you do!

Image by Flickr user Shardayyy used under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 license. Image cropped and modified from original.

The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.