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Date: 5/17/2017 6:12 PM UTC

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Nothing makes you melt quite like your child's smile. But as soon as kids start getting teeth, they start to become susceptible to gum disease, which can attack your child's signature pearly whites. While some types of periodontal disease are more common in adults, children aren't immune to the damaging effects of gum disease. Regular dental checkups can help, but it's up to you as a parent to understand exactly what is gum disease and teach your child hygiene habits that prevent issues such as gingivitis from affecting your child's toothy grin.

Types of Gum Disease

According to the American Academy of Periodontology, children are susceptible to a few kinds of gum disease of which you should be aware:

  • Gingivitis. The most common type of gum disease, gingivitis can affect any child at any age. It's a disease of the gums that causes them to be sensitive and often swollen or prone to bleeding. Left untreated, gingivitis can turn into other types of periodontal diseases, which is why parents must be extra vigilant in watching for telltale signs.
  • Aggressive Periodontitis. When gingivitis is left untreated, it can lead to aggressive periodontitis, which mostly affects molars and incisors. It is more common in teens and young adults. While aggressive periodontitis results in the loss of alveolar bone, the disease features only small amounts of plaque buildup.
  • Generalized Aggressive Periodontitis. After puberty, children can become more susceptible to another type of gum disease called generalized aggressive periodontitis. It involves the excessive buildup of plaque and can attack the gums and even result in loose teeth. Gums can also become red and inflamed because the disease attacks the entire mouth, not just the molars.
Gum Disease Symptoms

Okay, so you're not a dentist, but you should still be able to spot signs of gingivitis pretty easily. One of the most common symptoms is bleeding gums during brushing, along with swelling, redness and sensitivity. If your child tells you that brushing hurts or fights the idea of brushing altogether, it should be a red flag that sore gums and gingivitis are to blame.

Treatment for Gum Disease

If you notice that your little one has sore, red or bleeding gums, it might be time for a checkup. Not only can spending time at the dentist's office help clean away plaque that is causing gum disease, but an appointment can also spark a conversation about exactly what is gum disease and how your child's poor habits could be exacerbating the problem. While your child might not listen to you, there's a good chance that hearing it straight from the dentist could help your child better understand the dangers of gum disease.

Better Hygiene

The good news? Gum disease is pretty easy both to avoid and fix, if necessary. Simply follow good daily oral hygiene practices. Trying a kid-friendly product such as Colgate® 2in1 Kids toothpaste and mouthwash in combination with regular flossing is a great place to start since gum disease is caused by bacteria left in the mouth. Have your children adhere to an oral care routine twice a day, using fun toothbrushes and great-tasting toothpaste to entice your child to participate.

While gum disease can do serious damage to your child's smile, most forms of early gum disease are mild and easily treatable with better hygiene habits. Teaching your child to care for teeth now means that signature smile will brighten your day for years to come.

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Date: 4/26/2017 7:05 PM UTC

 

Copy of MFD Feb Blog #1 (2)

Gum Disease

Gum disease is an inflammation of the tissues that hold your teeth in place. If it is severe, it can destroy the tissue and bone, leading to tooth loss. Gum disease is caused by plaque, a sticky film of bacteria that constantly forms on the teeth. When plaque is not removed it can harden into calculus (tartar). When tartar forms above and below the gumline, it becomes harder to brush and clean well between teeth. That buildup of plaque and tartar can harbor bacteria that lead to gum disease. The first stage of gum disease is called gingivitis, which is the only stage that is reversible.

If not treated, gingivitis may lead to a more serious, destructive form of gum/periodontal disease called periodontitis. It is possible to have periodontal disease and have no warning signs. That is one reason why regular dental checkups and periodontal examinations are so important. Treatment methods depend upon the type of disease and how far the condition has progressed. Good oral hygiene at home is essential to help keep periodontal disease from becoming more serious or recurring. Brush twice a day, clean between your teeth daily, eat a balanced diet, and schedule regular dental visits for a lifetime of healthy smiles.

Teeth Grinding

Teeth grinding, also called bruxism, often occurs unconsciously while you sleep. It can cause serious damage to your teeth and jaw. Although it is often considered to be stress-related, teeth grinding can also be caused by sleep disorders. Your dentist’s choice of treatment will depend on the cause of your grinding, but you may be fitted with a mouthguard to protect your teeth while you sleep.

TMJ

The temporomandibular joints, or TMJ, are among the more complex joints in your body. Any problem that prevents the TMJ from working properly may result in a painful disorder, also referred to as TMJ disorders or sometimes TMD. The exact cause of a TMJ disorder is often unclear, but possible causes can include arthritis, dislocation, injury and/or problems related to alignment or teeth grinding from stress.

Symptoms can include:

  • pain in or around the ear
  • tenderness of the jaw
  • clicking or popping noises when opening the mouth
  • headaches
If you’re regularly experiencing facial or jaw pain, see your dentist. Exercise, muscle relaxants or physical therapy may help.

Root Canals

Sometimes a cavity is just too deep to be fixed and may require a root canal. Root canal procedures are used to treat problems of the tooth's soft core, otherwise known as dental pulp. The pulp contains the blood vessels and the nerves of the tooth, which run like a thread down into the root. The pulp tissue can die when it’s infected or injured. If you don't remove it, your tooth gets infected and you could lose it. During a root canal treatment, the dentist removes the pulp, and the root canal is cleaned and sealed off to protect it. Your dentist may then place a crown over the tooth to help make it stronger and protect it.

Sensitive teeth

If hot or cold foods make you wince, you may have a common dental problem—sensitive teeth. Sensitivity in your teeth can happen for several reasons, including: Sensitive teeth can be treated. Your dentist may recommend desensitizing toothpaste or an alternative treatment based on the cause of your sensitivity. Proper oral hygiene is the key to preventing tooth pain. Ask your dentist if you have any questions about your daily oral hygiene routine or concerns about tooth sensitivity.

Whitening

At some point, you may consider tooth whitening to help brighten your smile. Before using whitening products, talk to your dentist to determine the most appropriate treatment for you and if your teeth and gums are healthy enough to undergo a whitening procedure. This is especially important if you have fillings, crowns and/or extremely dark stains on your teeth.

Some popular whitening methods include:

  • In-office bleaching. A bleaching agent is applied to teeth and a light may be used to enhance the action of the agent. In-office bleaching products typically contain a higher percentage of peroxide than at-home formulations. The procedure is usually completed in less than two hours.
  • At-home bleaching. Peroxide-containing whiteners that bleach the tooth enamel. They typically come in a gel and are placed in a custom mouth tray. The bleaching trays are worn for short periods of time over a few days to gradually whiten the teeth.
  • Whitening toothpastes. Although all toothpastes help remove surface stains “whitening” toothpastes that carry the ADA Seal of Acceptance have special chemical or polishing agents that provide additional stain removal effectiveness. They do not alter the intrinsic color of teeth like bleaching agents do.
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Date: 4/24/2017 9:00 PM UTC

 

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Accidents happen, and knowing what to do when one occurs can mean the difference between saving and losing a tooth. Here are some common dental emergencies and how to deal with them. For all dental emergencies, it’s important to visit your dentist as soon as possible. Most dentists reserve time in their daily schedules for emergency patients so be sure to call your dentist and provide as much detail as you can about your condition. If the accident occurs when your dental office is not open, visit your local emergency room.

Question: What do I do if I knock out my tooth?

A: For a knocked-out permanent or adult tooth, keep it moist at all times. If you can, try placing the tooth back in the socket without touching the root. If that’s not possible, place it in between your cheek and gums, in milk, or use a tooth preservation product that has the ADA Seal of Acceptance. Then, get to your dentist’s office right away.

Q: What if I crack my tooth?

A: For a cracked tooth, immediately rinse the mouth with warm water to clean the area. Put cold compresses on the face to keep any swelling down. See your dentist as soon as possible.

Q: If I bite my tongue or lip, how do I treat it?

A: If you bite your tongue or lip, clean the area gently with water and apply a cold compress. See your dentist or go to the emergency room as soon as possible.

Q: How do I treat a toothache?

A: For toothaches, rinse your mouth with warm water to clean it out. Gently use dental floss to remove any food caught between your teeth. Do not put aspirin on your aching tooth or gums; it may burn the gum tissue. If the pain persists, contact your dentist.

Q: What if I think my jaw is broken?

A: If you think your jaw is broken apply cold compresses to control the swelling. Go to your dentist or a hospital emergency department immediately.

Q: How do I remove an object that’s stuck in my mouth or teeth?

A: For objects stuck in the mouth, try to gently remove with floss but do not try to remove it with a sharp or pointed instrument. See your dentist or go to the emergency room as soon as possible.

Q: How can I avoid a dental emergency?

A: There are a number of simple precautions you can take to avoid accident and injury to the teeth:

  • Wear a mouthguard when participating in sports or recreational activities.
  • Avoid chewing ice, popcorn kernels and hard candy, all of which can crack a tooth.
  • Use scissors, NEVER your teeth, to cut things.
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Date: 3/25/2017 12:03 PM UTC

Copy of MFD Feb Blog #1 (1)

Clinical studies have shown that chewing sugarless gum for 20 minutes following meals can help prevent tooth decay.

The chewing of sugarless gum increases the flow of saliva, which washes away food and other debris, neutralizes acids produced by bacteria in the mouth and provides disease-fighting substances throughout the mouth. Increased saliva flow also carries with it more calcium and phosphate to help strengthen tooth enamel.

Look for chewing gum with the ADA Seal because you can be sure it's sugarless. All gums with the ADA Seal are sweetened by non-cavity causing sweeteners such as aspartame, xylitol, sorbitol or mannitol. Of course, chewing sugar-containing gum increases saliva flow too, but it also contains sugar which is used by plaque bacteria to produce decay-causing acids. Further research needs to be done to determine the effects of chewing sugar-containing gum on tooth decay.

Don’t let chewing sugarless gum replace brushing and flossing.

It’s not a substitute. The ADA still recommends brushing twice a day with fluoride toothpaste and cleaning plaque from between your teeth once a day with dental floss or other interdental cleaners.

Look for chewing gum that carries the ADA Seal.

The ADA Seal is your assurance that the sugar-free chewing gum has met the ADA criteria for safety and effectiveness. You can trust that claims made on packaging and labeling for ADA-accepted products are true, because companies must verify all of the information to the ADA. Products with the ADA Seal say what they do and do what they say.

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Date: 3/7/2017 12:30 AM UTC

Copy of MFD Feb Blog #1 (2)

It’s important to be prepared to help ensure that you make the most of your dental visit. Here are some helpful questions to consider before and during your dental appointment.

Preparing for the Dental Visit for You or Your Child

Make a list of any pain or issues you are experiencing, or questions you would like to ask the dentist during your appointment. You can start with this list below, or make up your own. The important thing is to tell your dentist about any concerns or issues you have, even if they are minor, so that they can treat them now and help prevent bigger problems later on.
  • Do you have sensitivity or pain in your teeth? How bad is it?
  • Do you have pain or bleeding in your gums, tongue or jaw? How bad is it?
  • Do you have any unusual spots or sores in your mouth?
  • Do you have dry mouth or a lack of saliva?
  • Do you have an unpleasant taste or odor in your mouth?
  • Are you taking any prescription or over-the-counter medications? Make a list of those to take to the dentist.
  • Do you have any allergies?
  • Do you have trouble breathing when you sleep?
  • Do you grind your teeth when you sleep?

Questions to Ask During Your Dental Visit

In addition to discussing with your dentist any pain or issues you are having in your mouth, here are some general questions you could ask to help improve your overall dental health.
  • Does my mouth look healthy?
  • What can I do to improve the health of my teeth and gums?
  • Is there anything I should tell my family doctor about?
  • What foods can I eat to improve my dental health?
  • Which treatments are absolutely necessary? Which are optional? Which are cosmetic? Which procedures are urgently needed, and which ones are less urgent?

Questions to Ask the Dentist About Your Child’s Teeth

The Partnership for Healthy Mouths, Healthy Lives recommends taking your child to the dentist by the time they turn one. Then once you schedule a regular routine, here are some questions to ask the dentist about your child’s dental health.
  • How can I ensure that my child’s teeth are clean?
  • How can I prevent baby bottle tooth decay?
  • Do you have any advice on how to get my child to brush their teeth?
  • What foods will improve my child’s dental health?
  • Should my child get sealants to prevent cavities?
  • How are the teeth and jaws developing and, if there are any problems, when will you refer my child to an orthodontist?
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Date: 2/13/2017 7:10 PM UTC

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The Link Between Medications and Cavities

You may wonder why you’re suddenly getting cavities when you haven’t had them in years. As we get older, we enter a second round of cavity prone years. One common cause of cavities in older adults is dry mouth. Dry mouth is not a normal part of aging. However, it is a side-effect in more than 500 medications, including those for allergies or asthma, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, pain, anxiety or depression, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases.This is just one reason why it’s so important to tell your dentist about any medications that you’re taking. Your dentist can make recommendations to help relieve your dry mouth symptoms and prevent cavities. Here are some common recommendations:
  • Use over-the-counter oral moisturizers, such as a spray or mouthwash.
  • Consult with your physician on whether to change the medication or dosage.
  • Drink more water. Carry a water bottle with you, and don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink. Your mouth needs constant lubrication.
  • Use sugar-free gum or lozenges to stimulate saliva production.
  • Get a humidifier to help keep moisture in the air.
  • Avoid foods and beverages that irritate dry mouths, like coffee, alcohol, carbonated soft drinks, and acidic fruit juices.
  • Your dentist may apply a fluoride gel or varnish to protect your teeth from cavities.

Gum Disease

Many older adults have gum, or periodontal disease, caused by the bacteria in plaque, which irritate the gums, making them swollen, red and more likely to bleed. One reason gum disease is so widespread among adults is that it’s often a painless condition until the advanced stage. If left untreated, gums can begin to pull away from the teeth and form deepened spaces called pockets where food particles and more plaque may collect. Advanced gum disease can eventually destroy the gums, bone and ligaments supporting the teeth leading to tooth loss. The good news is that with regular dental visits gum disease can be treated or prevented entirely.

Mouth Cancer

According to the American Cancer Society, there are about 35,000 cases of mouth, throat and tongue cancer diagnosed each year. The average age of most people diagnosed with these cancers is 62. During dental visits, your dentist will check for any signs of oral cancer. Regular dental visits are important because in the early stages oral cancer typically does not cause pain and early detection saves lives. Some symptoms you may see include open sores, white or reddish patches, and changes in the lips, tongue and lining of the mouth that lasts for more than two weeks.

Paying for Dental Care after Retirement

Many retirees don’t realize that Medicare does not cover routine dental care. Begin to plan for your dental expenses in advance of retirement so you don’t have to let your dental health suffer once you’re on a fixed income. Organizations like AARP offer supplemental dental insurance plans for their members.

We also offer an alternative for those who do not have dental coverage. The Periodontal plan is available through our in-house Membership Club. Pay a low monthly fee for needed treatments, regular care, needed x-rays and much more. Learn more about the Perio plan here.

Do I Need to Take an Antibiotic before a Dental Procedure?

If you have a heart condition or artificial joint, be sure to tell your dentist. You may think it’s not relevant. After all, what do your heart and joints have to do with your teeth? But, there are conditions with a high risk of infection and an antibiotic is recommended prior to some dental procedures.

Dentists follow recommendations that have been developed by the American Heart Association and the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons in cooperation with the American Dental Association. Talk to your dentist about how these recommendations might apply to you.

Caregiving for a Disabled or Elderly Loved One

You may have a parent, spouse or friend who has difficulty maintaining a healthy mouth on their own. How can you help? Two things are critical:
  • Help them keep their mouth clean with reminders to brush and floss daily.
  • Make sure they get to a dentist regularly.
These steps can prevent many problems, but tasks that once seemed so simple can become very challenging. If your loved one is having difficulty with brushing and flossing, talk to a dentist or hygienist who can provide helpful tips or a different approach. For those who wear dentures, pay close attention to their eating habits. If they’re having difficulty eating or are not eating as much as usual, denture problems could be the cause.

When you’re caring for someone who is confined to bed, they may have so many health problems that it’s easy to forget about oral health. However, it’s still very important because bacteria from the mouth can be inhaled into the lungs and cause pneumonia.

Curated from: Mouth Healthy

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Date: 1/23/2017 2:46 PM UTC

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CEREC dentistry is a system that allows you to have your crown fitted during one single dental visit. The whole procedure takes only about an hour. With the system a dentist can make a crown, veneer or inlay in a single visit. This is normally a procedure that would take two weeks time when customized in a lab.

During your visit your dentist will prepare your tooth in the way he or she normally would before fitting a crown or veneer. Then, instead of using putty to take an impression of your tooth a digital image is taken using a special camera. Then, the image is converted into a 3D computerized model of your tooth. This model is used to create your new tooth.

Once your dentist is satisfied with your newly designed tooth, the data is sent to an onsite milling machine that fabricates your new tooth from a high quality ceramic block. The process of milling the new tooth can take anywhere from 6 to 30 minutes. The most recent CEREC MCXL milling machine can make a crown in as little as 6 minutes.

The ceramic blocks that the teeth are milled from come in a variety of shades and colors. The block used for your tooth will be selected to match your surrounding teeth. Once the crown or veneer has been milled your dentist may need to stain it to match your surrounding teeth. Then, they will polish it and glaze it in a furnace. Next, your new crown or veneer will be cemented into place on your prepared tooth.

CEREC dentistry also has several advantages over conventional, laboratory-made restorations. First and foremost, everything is carried out in one visit. Next, you only need one set up anesthetic injections because the entire procedure can be completed in an hour. Your dentist is in complete control of the final result because the finished crown or veneer is crafted by your dentist from start to finish. Plus, you don’t have to deal with any temporary restorations.

The benefits to CEREC far outweigh and negatives there might be about it. It is the ideal way to replace or repair a tooth. You can have your repair done before anyone can even notice you need one. Contact us today to discuss getting fitted for your custom made crown, all in one appointment!

Curated from: Your Tech Weblog

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Date: 1/9/2017 8:46 PM UTC

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Only 12 percent of older Americans have some form of dental insurance and fewer than half visited a dentist in the previous year, suggests new Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health research on Medicare beneficiaries.

Insurance status appeared to be the biggest predictor of whether a person received oral health care: For those with incomes just over the federal poverty level, 27 percent of those without dental insurance had a dental visit in the previous year, compared to 65 percent with dental insurance, according to an analysis of 2012 Medicare data.

Income also played a role: High-income beneficiaries were almost three times as likely to have received dental care in the previous 12 months as compared to low-income beneficiaries, 74 percent of whom reported receiving no dental care. Many high-income beneficiaries - even those with dental insurance - paid a sizable portion of their bills out of pocket.

The findings, published in the December issue of the journal Health Affairs, suggest an enormous unmet need for dental insurance among those 65 and older in the United States, putting older adults at risk for oral health problems that could be prevented or treated with timely dental care, including tooth decay, gum disease and loss of teeth. It also highlights the financial burden associated with dental visits, among both the insured and uninsured.

"Medicare is focused specifically on physical health needs and not oral health needs and, as a result, a staggering 49 million Medicare beneficiaries in this country do not have dental insurance," says study author Amber Willink, PhD, an assistant scientist in the Department of Health Policy and Management at the Bloomberg School. "With fewer and fewer retiree health plans covering dental benefits, we are ushering in a population of people with less coverage and who are less likely to routinely see a dentist. We need to think about cost-effective solutions to this problem."

Eighty percent of Americans under the age of 65 are covered by employer-sponsored programs that offer dental insurance, which covers routine cleanings and cost-sharing on fillings and other dental work. Many of them lose that coverage when they retire or go on Medicare. The vast majority of Medicare beneficiaries who have dental insurance are those who are still covered by employer-sponsored insurance, either because they are still working or because they are part of an ever-dwindling group of people with very generous retiree medical and dental benefits.

For the new study, the researchers analyzed data provided by 11,299 respondents to the 2012 Cost and Use Files of the Medicare Current Beneficiary Survey. The data included information collected on income, dental insurance status, dental health access and out-of-pocket expenditures.

Among the findings: On average, Medicare beneficiaries reported spending $427 on dental care over the previous year, 77 percent of which was out-of-pocket spending. An estimated seven percent reported spending more than $1,500. Dental expenses, on average, accounted for 14 percent of Medicare beneficiaries' out-of-pocket health spending.

Poor dental hygiene not only contributes to gum disease, but the same bacteria linked to gum disease has also been linked to pneumonia, a serious illness that increases the risk of hospitalization and death. It can also contribute to difficulty eating, swallowing or speaking, all of which bring their own health challenges. Nearly one in five Medicare beneficiaries doesn't have any of his or her original teeth left, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The researchers took the research a step further. They analyzed two separate proposals for adding dental benefits to Medicare, estimating how much each would cost. One was similar to the premium-financed, voluntary Medicare Part D benefit that was added to Medicare a decade ago to help cover prescription drugs for seniors. The other was similar to a proposal that has been introduced in Congress that would embed dental care into Medicare as a core benefit for all of the program's 56 million beneficiaries, which is not expected to pass before Congress recesses.

The first proposal, which would cost an average premium of $29-a-month and would come with a subsidy for low-income seniors who couldn't afford that, would run an estimated $4.4 to $5.9 billion annually depending on the number of low-income beneficiaries who participate. The second, with a $7 monthly premium and subsidies for low-income people, would cost between $12.8 and $16.2 billion annually. The packages would cover the full cost of one preventive care visit a year and 50 percent of allowable costs for necessary care up to a $1,500 limit per year to cover additional preventive care and treatment of acute gum disease or tooth decay.

"It's hard to tell in this current political climate whether this is something that will be addressed by lawmakers, but regardless this is affecting the lives of many older adults," Willink says.

She cautions that if the costs become too high for Medicare beneficiaries, they could lose whatever wealth they have and end up on Medicaid, the insurance for the very poor which the government pays for fully.

"Older adults are struggling and the current benefits structure of Medicare is not meeting their needs. We need to find the right solution," she says. "Otherwise, it's going to end up being so much more expensive for everyone."

Curated from: Medical News Today

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Date: 12/14/2016 9:40 PM UTC

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You can enjoy seasonal sweets and still have a cavity-free smile to flash in festive photos. These tips will keep your teeth healthy during the holidays.

Avoid over doing it with candy. It's the most wonderful time of year for candy canes, popcorn balls, and cookies -- and this nonstop buffet of sweets can wreak havoc on your teeth, says Steven Chussid, DDS. He's an associate professor of dental medicine at Columbia University College of Dental Medicine.

Still, you don't have to skip holiday treats. "Eat a single dessert and brush your teeth afterward," Chussid says. "You'll expose your teeth to less sugar [with a single treat] than if you're constantly snacking, and that reduces the risk of tooth decay."

Snack smart. Use a nutcracker, not your teeth, to shell nuts. No nutcracker? Choose a different snack. "One poor decision can cause a lot of painful and expensive damage," Chussid says. "Is it worth it to break a tooth for a nut?"

Keep a routine. The holidays can upset your schedule, but you should still brush at least two times a day.

To keep up good habits on the go, stash a toothbrush and mini tube of toothpaste in your purse or briefcase and make time to "freshen up" after meals. If brushing your teeth isn't an option, chew sugarless gum, which boosts saliva, helps flush out food debris, and more.

Honor appointments. Skipping a dental exam could get you on the naughty list. "It's much better to catch problems now and not put them off until the new year," Chussid says.

If your 6-month checkup falls during the holidays, consider it a celebration of good oral health -- and a holiday gift to yourself.

Crunch Time

If you crack a tooth on grandma's peanut brittle, you may not be able to see your dentist. "Most dental offices are closed during the holidays," says Kimberly Harms, DDS. She's a dental consultant in Farmington, MN. If you have a dental emergency, Harms offers these tips.

Be prepared. Pack dental floss, gauze, and over-the-counter pain relievers with your toiletries to deal with minor dental problems when you travel. Take your dental benefits policy number with you.

Know who to call. If your dental office will be closed during the holidays, ask your dentist for a referral for emergencies. Know the location of the nearest emergency dental clinic (similar to an urgent care clinic).

Don't delay treatment. Waiting until the new year to fix a broken tooth or replace a lost filling could make the problem worse. If you're traveling, call a local dental office for an appointment if you need emergency care. Harms says most dentists set aside time for emergencies even for people who aren't regular patients.

Curated from: WebMD

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Date: 12/6/2016 8:04 PM UTC

We are a family here at MFD, and we celebrate the holidays together in as many ways as we can! We have a lot to celebrate about this year. We are grateful for everyone's hard work this year and every year, as well as the patronage of our patients. Enjoy some of our photos from a wonderful dinner at Vivace Charlotte, our ugly sweater day in the office and our visit with Mr. & Mrs. Claus! As it turns out, Santa needed his teeth cleaned from all of those cookies he eats!

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