Make Your Game Day Snacks More Smile-Friendly

WATCHING FOOTBALL IS ONE OF AMERICA’S GREAT TRADITIONS. Many families and friends gather together on a weekly basis to watch their favorite teams go head to head. And while people come for the football, we all know what they’re really there for… the food!

Traditional game day snacks may be delicious–think wings, sliders, nachos, pizza–but they are certainly not the healthiest for our bodies, or our teeth for that matter.

Make Healthier Choices On Game Day

October is one of the busiest sports months of the year. For all you sports fans out there, you’re going to have a lot of games to watch and, as a result, a lot of unhealthy finger food you may be planning to eat. Making healthier choices for the big game is easy… and well worth it!

For more smile-friendly snacks, try these healthy alternatives to traditional game day food:

  • Veggie-filled wraps instead of sliders. Leafy greens contain vitamins essential for healthy teeth and gums.
  • Yogurt instead of ice cream. You know dairy is good for your teeth! But watch out for added sugars you can find in ice cream and some yogurts. Make a greek yogurt parfait or a yogurt-based dip for fruit to protect those chompers.
  • Bruschetta instead of pizza. Fresh-made bruschetta, especially with calcium-rich cheese on top, is a great substitute for greasy pizza.
  • Vegetables instead of chips. Refined, starchy foods can be worse for your teeth than sugar. Bake your own kale chips or substitute cucumbers, celery, and carrots for greasy chips. You’ll get that crunch factor you crave as well as protect your teeth from decay.
  • Zucchini or sweet potato fries instead of french fries. Bake your fries instead of deep-fry them. Sweet potatoes have a lot of vitamin C which promotes healthy gums. Zucchini has an extremely high water content which will get your saliva flowing.

You could even try this healthy spinach and artichoke dip at your next watch-party!

Here’s another fun fact: including apples and strawberries in your snack game plan can actually help whiten your teeth! These fruits contain malic acid which removes surface stains from your teeth and whitens enamel.

In addition, nuts, celery, carrots and again, apples, are great finger foods that work as natural toothbrushes. That’s right! Because of their abrasive texture, they naturally remove bacteria and plaque. They also increase saliva production, helping to wash away food particles and bacteria in your mouth. So the next time you want to just eat the wings and leave the celery, think again.

Eat Right For A Winning Smile

We know you want your team to win the big game, but it’s even more important to have a winning smile! What are your favorite healthy game day snacks? Let us know in the comments below. We’d love to get some more ideas!

Happy watching to all our football fans!

Top image by Flickr user Abdulla Al Muhairi 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.

Helping Your Kids Learn And Love To Brush Their Teeth

ANY PARENT KNOWS that getting your child to do certain things like eat their veggies, clean their room and even brush their teeth can be difficult. But the reality is that tooth decay is the number one disease affecting young children today.

To combat this, kids need to learn and love to brush their teeth early on in their lives. Our goal is to help your children maintain bright, healthy smiles and help them learn early the importance of good oral hygiene.

Let’s Catch Up On Some Of The Basics

Your child’s first dental visit should be when their first tooth appears, or around their first birthday. Once teeth emerge, you can start brushing them. Brush your child’s teeth twice a day with a child-sized toothbrush and only a smear of toothpaste (the size of a grain of rice). When two teeth begin to touch, it is time to start flossing!

From the ages of three to six, you can use a pea-sized amount of toothpaste. Remind children not to swallow the toothpaste. Continue to help your child brush their teeth until you feel that they can correctly do so on their own.

Our Top Tips On Teaching Your Kids Good Oral Hygiene

It may not be easy, but it will definitely be worth it to teach your kids the value of taking care of their teeth. Here are some things you can do to help them understand just how important a task it is, and even how fun it can be!

Teach Them Why

When kids understand the reason behind something, they are more inclined to do it. You can even make it more interesting by spinning it into a fun story and giving the bacteria in their mouths a name, like the plaque monsters or tooth bugs!

Let Them Participate

Allowing your child to pick out their toothbrush, toothpaste and floss is a great way for them to participate. If you use a timer to help them brush their teeth for the full two minutes, let them press the button. Find ways to get them involved!

Use Positive Reinforcement

Parents know better than anyone what kids will do for prizes. One idea is to use a sticker chart. Every time they brush their teeth well, without complaining, they get to put a sticker on the chart. When the chart is full, they get a prize!

Make It Fun

Whether you turn on their favorite two-minute song or have them brush their stuffed animal’s teeth first, making it fun is key to helping your child love brushing time. There are also many smartphone apps out there dedicated to making oral hygiene more fun!

You can even show them this fun video to help encourage them to brush their teeth!

We Are Proud Partners Of Parents

Although getting your child to love brushing and flossing their teeth is difficult at times, remember that we are your allies in helping ensure their lifelong oral and overall health. If your child is still struggling with brushing and flossing, let us know, we are here to help.

Have any other suggestions that have worked for you and your child? Tell us in the comments below!

Thank you for your trust in our practice.

Top image by Flickr user Abigail Batchelder 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.

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.

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.

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.