Don’t Let A Simple Problem Become Serious

Dental health General Dentistry Oral Health

canker sore treatment PhoenixIn this blog post from Harris Dental in Phoenix, we are going to discuss those small irritations in the mouth that have the potential to become big problems.

Injuries, sores, or inflammation in the mouth can be very uncomfortable. These non-specific irritations, called stomatitis, have many different causes.

They may be caused by cold sores, gum disease, teeth grinding, or biting the inside of your mouth. They may also be triggered by broken teeth or braces.

In fact, any inflammation of the membranes in the mouth can be classified as stomatitis. Stomatitis can impact a person’s ability to speak, eat, and even to fall asleep at night.

Fortunately, most of these irritations clear up on their own within a couple of weeks. However, there is a possibility that a viral or bacterial infection can occur. It’s important to let your dentist know about these sores if they don’t clear up after several weeks. Even if there are no complications, your dentist can help you treat the symptoms of stomatitis.

At Harris Dental in Phoenix, we want each of our patients to have the best possible dental health. To that end, we share information that empowers you, and it is our policy to never lecture. Services include general dentistry. Schedule your next checkup today!

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480-428-0040

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How To Make Brushing Your Teeth A Habit

Dental health General Dentistry Oral Health

How To Make Brushing Your Teeth A Habit

At Harris Dental in Phoenix, we always remind our patients that brushing their teeth on a regular basis is one of the best things for their smiles. It’s a simple equation: healthy teeth equal a beautiful smile. Brushing can also help with gum health, and even keep your breath smelling sweet.

For some of us, brushing can be a chore. We hope you don’t think of brushing in such dire terms, but it happens. If you can make brushing your teeth a habit, you’ll be one step closer to a life of successful checkups.

Here are some tips for creating a good habit that you can teach to your kids. These tips will also work on teens. And they work on adults, too:

Keep It Simple

One of the best ways to create a habit is to keep the requirements simple. Brushing teeth is already a simple task, but we can focus on the simplicity to help it stick as a habit.

Don’t complicate the instructions for kids. Keep it as simple as possible at the start. A small amount of toothpaste on your toothbrush, brush for about two minutes, rinse with clear water. Simple.

Regular Timing

One of the cornerstones of a habit is routine. Routine is rooted in consistency. Choose at least two regular times to brush your teeth. Set a timer if you have to, but it’s best to create a habit around other regular activities. “First thing in the morning” or “after breakfast” are good times. After dinner or just before getting into bed are also good times.

Regardless of when you choose, make sure it is a daily activity, and that it is tied to another routine or habit as a reminder. In this way you are actually appending an existing habit or routine, and that makes it easier.

Stick To It

Research indicates it takes about two weeks to create a habit. You have to do a task for at least two weeks in a row before your brain will turn it over to auto-pilot and make it into a habit. Your brain tries to do this with routine things so you don’t have to keep the task in your short-term memory.

If you can stick with a task for two weeks, you’ll be well on your way to creating a good habit. If you can hold on for 30 days, you’ll imprint your new habit as a reflexive routine. You may never have to think about it again!

Improve It

Finally, any good habit needs constant improving. You can improve your habit of brushing your teeth by working on proper form, or by adding a little bit of time. Work toward the two minute mark; any longer and it may start to cause damage. You can also make sure you are using a soft or medium brush, and that you are using floride toothpaste to keep your teeth healthy.

Start Today

There’s no time like right now to get started on creating healthy habits for your teeth. If you are having trouble with brushing, make a commitment to work on it starting now. Once you have created a healthy habit around brushing your teeth, you’ll have plenty of reason to smile.

At Harris Dental in Phoenix, we want all our patients to enjoy excellent dental health. In addition to brushing, please see us twice a year for a cleaning and checkup. Our services include general and cosmetic dentistry. Schedule an appointment today!

Contact Harris Dental:

480-428-0040

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Clean Teeth, Happy Mouth

Dental health General Dentistry Oral Health

Good dental health means having healthy teeth and gums. Maintaining it is something that you have to work at every day. It can be a real balancing act: using the right oral care products, your personal oral care habits, and seeing us at Harris Dental in Phoenix twice a year.

Your dental health strategy should include:

  • Daily brushing and flossing. You should brush and floss twice a day. Just before bedtime is especially important, because it cleans out the germs and plaque that build up during the course of the day.
  • Proper brushing. It’s important not only to brush, but to brush properly. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush in a gentle, circular motion along the gum line. Take your time; a minimum of two minutes is recommended. Don’t forget to brush your tongue!
  • Using fluoridated toothpaste. There is a myriad of choices when it comes to toothpaste. Whether you prefer mint flavored or bubble gum, fluoride is the most important consideration. It is your best defense against cavities.
  • Limiting sugary and acidic foods. Acidic fruits, teas, and coffee contributes to enamel erosion. Sugar converts into acid when it’s in your mouth. You don’t have to avoid these foods entirely, but choose carefully and minimize.
  • Seeing the dentist twice a year. You saw this one coming, right? Your daily dental health care habits are essential, but so is the attention and care of a dentist. A professional teeth cleaning alone is worth the trip, but we can also identify issues before they become serious, and treat them.

At Harris Dental in Phoenix, your dental health is our top priority. Our services include general and cosmetic dentistry. Schedule your next appointment with us today.

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480-428-0040

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The Techno-Toothbrush

Dental health General Dentistry Oral Health

Are electric toothbrushes any better at cleaning your teeth than manual toothbrushes? It depends on who you ask, because both have their advocates. In this article from Harris Dental in Phoenix, we aren’t going to recommend one over the other. We’re just going to take a look at the world of the electric toothbrush.

Electric toothbrushes have been commercially available in the United States since the 1960s. But they first appeared in Switzerland, where they were invented. They caught on quickly, and have evolved considerably since then. When it comes to electric toothbrushes, there is a lot of choose from.

Those earliest electric toothbrushes did not have rechargeable batteries; you had to plug them in. That wasn’t really much of an issue, unless you like to walk away from the sink while you brush.

Rechargeable batteries are standard in most modern electric toothbrushes. In fact, they have features that those 1960s inventors probably never dreamed of. Some models have:

Timers, so you can make sure you brush at least two minutes
Digital alerts, to remind you it’s time for a new brush head
Pressure sensors that tell you if you’re brushing too hard
Multiple brush head capability, so different types fit
Variable brushing features like pulsing and oscillating capability

Sonic

And then there’s the sonic toothbrush. Sonic toothbrushes take electric brushes to a whole new level. Toothbrush manufacturers consider them a subset of electric brushes, but they are in a class by themselves.

Sonic toothbrushes can deliver up to 40,000 strokes per minute. Compare that to an ordinary electric toothbrush, which deliver between 2,500 and 7,000 strokes per minute. That’s quite a difference. For some people, that’s overkill. But others say that sonic toothbrushes out-perform any other type of toothbrush you can find.

When all is said and done, it depends on the person doing the brushing. A manual toothbrush used properly does a fine job cleaning your teeth. But you can always take it to the next level with a standard electric, or even a sonic, toothbrush.

At Harris Dental in Phoenix, what we really want is for each of our patients to brush and floss their teeth twice a day. It’s the best way to ensure good dental health. Our services include general and cosmetic dentistry. Schedule an appointment with us today.

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480-428-0040

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Great Reasons to Floss Your Teeth

Dental health General Dentistry Oral Health

Three Great Reasons to Floss Your Teeth by Harris Dental

Flossing can be a chore. It takes extra time, and if you haven’t flossed in a while, it can even be painful. It’s no wonder our team at Harris Dental in Phoenix are constantly reminding our patients to ‘brush and floss!’

Flossing is crucial, and for two vital reasons. Here they are:

1. Bad Breath

Bad breath is something we all worry about. It’s part of our appearance, and we are all aware of how that can affect our relationships.

When we meet new people, talk to others in close quarters, or greet a partner, bad breath is on our mind. We worry about how bad breath affects first impressions.

Flossing is a great way to help you avoid bad breath. It helps prevent plaque buildup between your teeth. It also helps flush out pockets of bacteria. Together, plaque and bacteria can create bad breath.

To reduce your chances of being caught with bad breath, floss every day.

2. Cavities

When bacteria concentrates on your teeth, cavities can occur. Plaque buildup is a concentration of bacteria. When it gets between your teeth it gives bacteria a chance to destroy enamel. Cavities are damage to your teeth caused by bacteria.

Flossing gets the plaque between your teeth where your brush can’t get and cleans away plaque buildup. It also loosens pockets of bacteria that can be removed with a quick rinse.

Flossing will help you keep plaque and bacteria from developing between your teeth.

Harris Dental in Phoenix recommends flossing every time you brush. At the very least, we encourage you to floss before you go to bed. Our services include general and cosmetic dentistry. Schedule your next checkup with us today.

Contact Harris Dental:

480-428-0040

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