15 Things You Didn’t Know About Teeth

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Our teeth are alive, but it’s easy to forget that and take them for granted. At The Reno Dentist in Reno NV we never take teeth for granted – but then, as dental professionals we probably understand better than most just how amazing teeth can be. We’re using this blog post to share some of the more interesting facts about teeth.

Here are fifteen things you might not know about teeth.

  1. Children’s teeth are soft until about age 10.
  2. A tooth with a crown can get a cavity.
  3. Your gum tissue is as vital as your teeth.
  4. Some prescription drugs can increase your risk of tooth decay.
  5. Some home faucet water filters remove fluoride.
  6. 19 percent of children between the ages of 2 and 19 have untreated cavities.
  7. Heartburn can be damaging for teeth.
  8. Allergies can cause tooth grinding.
  9. Dried fruit is just as adverse for teeth as sticky candy.
  10. Tooth enamel cannot repair itself, though dentin and cementum (the substance that surrounds the tooth root) are capable of partial regeneration.
  11. A Harvard-led team used low-powered lasers to activate stem cells and stimulate the growth of teeth in rats and human dental tissue in a lab.
  12. There are about 300 types of bacteria in your mouth.
  13. Chewing sugarless gum after meals can help remove food particles on your teeth. You still need to brush, but if you can’t brush immediately after meals, sugarless gum can help keep your teeth clean.
  14. Cavities often don’t cause pain until they have reached the root and nerve of the tooth. Visit us regularly to prevent cavities or at least to detect them when they are small.
  15. Bone recession can cause tooth loss even if no decay is present.

At The Reno Dentist in Reno NV, we want all of our patients to have clean and healthy teeth, along with beautiful smiles. People come to our practice from Spanish Springs, Virginia City, and Carson City for complete general and family dentistry, and for specialties like dental implants. Schedule your next cleaning and checkup with us today!

Contact The Reno Dentist:

775-322-5016

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

855 W Seventh St Ste 200
Reno, Nevada
89503

 

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How Often Should I Replace My Toothbrush?

How Often Should I Replace My Toothbrush?

Have you replaced your toothbrush lately? You don’t have to answer that. At The Reno Dentist we recommend replacing your toothbrush every three months.

Too many people wait too long to get a new toothbrush, which can be bad for their dental health. It’s one of the reasons why most dentists hand out free ones at every checkup.

Of course, you don’t need to mark your calendar or set up an alert on your smartphone. How often you replace your toothbrush depends on how often you use it. We recommend, strongly, that you brush at least twice a day. If you’re brushing twice a day, picking up a new toothbrush at the store every three months is recommended.

Why So Often?

A toothbrush can become familiar, like a comfy pair of shoes. Sometimes the idea of tossing out the old one and replacing it isn’t very appealing. But after three months, the bristles are getting bent and frayed. There may be some gunk – dried toothpaste foam – starting to build up, too. Yuk. So toss that old brush, and get a fresh one!

What kind of brush should you be using? There are so many choices. The most important thing is to choose a brush with soft bristles. They are gentle on the gums, but still effective in brushing away plaque.

To recap: for good dental health, the important thing is to change your toothbrush every three months. Patients come to The Reno Dentist from Spanish Springs, Virginia City, and Carson City for cosmetic dentistry, and complete general and family dentistry services. Schedule your next checkup with us today.

Contact The Reno Dentist:

775-322-5016

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

855 W Seventh St Ste 200
Reno, Nevada
89503

 

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5 Benefits Of Preventive Dentistry For Kids

Carson City Pediatric and Cosmetic Dentistry

At The Reno Dentist in Reno, we promote preventative dental care by developing decay prevention plans and helping our patients establish and keep proper dental practices. If today’s kids can avoid tooth decay, it will benefit them more than you may realize.

1) A healthy mouth equals better overall health and well-being. Maintaining optimal oral health puts children at a lower risk for diabetes and heart disease.

2) A beautiful, healthy smile boosts confidence and self-esteem for little ones.

3) By keeping teeth and gums healthy as kids, you avoid the need for costly restorative dental work down the road.

4) Strong teeth help kids get proper nutrition. Tooth decay makes eating difficult.

5) Proper dental hygiene beginning at birth and twice-yearly exams commencing with the eruption of the first tooth promotes normal speech development. (The American Dental Association recommends toddler dental visits to begin when the first tooth appears.)

If you are looking for an experienced children’s dentist, we invite you to call The Reno Dentist in Reno at 775-322-5016. Our knowledgeable team ensures that dental visits are pleasant and comfortable for our patients of all ages.

If you have a toddler that has not yet visited a dentist, call 775-322-5016 today to schedule a pediatric dental examination. Effective dental care is just as important as immunizations, proper nutrition, auto safety seats, and medical care.

 

Contact The Reno Dentist:

775-322-5016

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

855 W Seventh St Ste 200
Reno, Nevada
89503

 

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Protect Your Athlete’s Teeth

Protecting Your Reno Athlete's TeethPrimary teeth are important. If you have a child who plays youth sports such as soccer or baseball, they can be very risky for your child’s teeth. At The Reno Dentist, we strongly recommend that you protect your child’s teeth.

Football can be a heavy contact sport, yet there is a relatively low rate of mouth injuries that occur in football as compared to other contact sports. Why? Football players are required to wear a mouth guard and a helmet.

Inexpensive athletic dental mouth guards are worth their weight in gold!

If your child participates in a contact sport and doesn’t currently wear a mouth guard, we recommend that you have them start.

There are three main types of mouthguards:

  • ready-to-wear.  The stock mouth protectors are pre-formed and ready to wear. Unfortunately, they rarely fit well.
  • boil and bite. They are to be softened in water and then formed to the mouth (follow the manufacturer’s instructions).
  • custom-fitted.

We offer custom sports mouth guards that provide the highest level of protection and comfort. Mouth protectors that are comfortable are more likely to be worn by kids who complain about wearing a mouthguard.

Start Early For a Healthy Smile For Life

Is your child still a toddler? It’s not too early to start protecting their oral health. If your toddler has not yet had a dental examination, call us to schedule one. Starting early dental visits is important for lifelong oral health.

In addition to general and family dentistry, we offer cosmetic dentistry and serve the Reno, Sparks and Carson City areas. Let us help you today!

Contact The Reno Dentist:

775-322-5016

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

855 W Seventh St Ste 200
Reno, Nevada
89503

 


Protect Those Nooks And Crannies

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The team at The Reno Dentist is dedicated to the prevention of cavities, which is the foundation for a healthy and beautiful smile.

THE IMPORTANCE OF PREVENTION

Preventative dentistry – brushing, flossing, and regular dental cleanings with a dental hygienist – are indispensable for keeping your smile bright and free of cavities. There are some places, however, where enamel deterioration can occur even with proper oral hygiene.

KEEPING MOLARS CLEAN

The very back of the mouth, where the premolars and molars are, is the most difficult area to brush and floss. Deep pits in molars and spaces between teeth are the perfect environment for cavities to flourish. Food and bacteria that is lodged in pits of molars and spaces between teeth create acid that has direct contact with tooth enamel and immediately goes to work.

EXTRA PROTECTION FOR MOLARS

While brushing frequently is important, an additional safeguard against decay is the application of dental sealants. We apply dental sealants as a plastic barrier on teeth. We will place sealants over the top of each tooth, to prohibit bacteria and plaque having direct contact with the tooth.

Many parents obtain sealants for their children and teens to help fight decay and protect enamel.  We will examine your child’s sealants at each visit and reapply as needed.

COST EFFECTIVE?

Sealants are relatively inexpensive initially and downright cheap when you consider the cost of filling cavities and restorative services that may be needed in the future. Sealants may be the best investment you ever make in your child’s smile.

To preserve a healthy smile, follow these steps:

  • Brush with a soft-bristled toothbrush and replace it every few months
  • Brush with fluoride toothpaste after each meal
  • Eat a diet with plenty of fruit, vegetables, legumes, whole grains, and low fat protein sources.
  • Limit or avoid sugary foods and drinks, especially soda and hard or chewy candy
  • Visit The Reno Dentist twice a year and have your teeth cleaned and examined
  • Have sealants applied to help protect the enamel in the hard-to-clean places

Sealants, brushing and flossing, a balanced diet, and twice-yearly dental visits are essential for pediatric dental health.

At The Reno Dentist, we serve the Reno, Sparks, and Carson City areas and offer a variety of dental treatments. Along with  cosmetic dentistry procedures we also offer other dental procedures, such as dental implants and full smile makeovers. We treat migraines, headaches and TMJ as well. Call us today for an appointment.

Contact The Reno Dentist:

775-322-5016

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

855 W Seventh St Ste 200
Reno, Nevada
89503

 


3 Tips To Make Brushing Count

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Many of our patients at The Reno Dentist want to know if they are brushing their teeth properly. That might seem surprising, because brushing your teeth seems so straight-forward. But it’s easy to get into bad habits, and if we can correct any with tips, it really makes our day.

Having patients come for treatment and leave with questions answered—from which toothpaste to buy to proper tools and techniques—is our business. We are all about educating our patients. Sometimes our tips on brushing teeth are as easy as 1-2-3.

1 Soft Bristle Toothbrush

Gentle brushing will achieve the same results as hard bristle brushing without the abrasive damage to gums and gum line. There is never a good reason to use hard or medium bristle toothbrushes. Better yet, wet the soft bristle toothbrush to be sure the bristles are flexible before brushing.

2 Minutes of Brushing and Flossing

Split the mouth into fourths and spend a good 30 seconds in each quarter. Hit the chewing surfaces, the inside surfaces, the outside surfaces and gently massage the gums. Be sure to reach the far side of the back tooth that is never visible but can collect food and allow dental caries to begin. Take two minutes to floss after brushing in the evening to remove any remnants the toothbrush couldn’t coax out and to clean any build-up. You have approximately 32 teeth and 32 gaps to floss clean. Two minutes should do the trick, but adding an extra minute for good measure can’t hurt.

3 Times a Day

Brushing after every meal should be the goal. This is difficult for many who are not home for the midday meal. To achieve fantastic dental hygiene, brushing is priority one. There are as many toothpaste choices out there as you have teeth; without consistent brushing and flossing, those teeth are facing sure destruction. Don’t misunderstand, toothpaste is critical. Toothpaste acts as the vehicle that collects the debris, keeps the bristles pliable, fluoridates the mouth, freshens the breath and a myriad of other side jobs. But after every meal, gently removing food debris prevents breakdown on precious tooth surfaces. Even if you don’t use toothpaste after lunch, a quick brush can keep your teeth free of build-up.

At The Reno Dentist, the dental health of our patients is always our top priority. Our services include general and family dentistry, and a wide range of cosmetic dentistry procedures. Schedule an appointment today.

Contact The Reno Dentist:

775-322-5016

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

855 W Seventh St Ste 200
Reno, Nevada
89503

 

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Five Facts About Enamel Erosion

enamel erosion treatment Reno

Our teeth work hard and are constantly under assault. At The Reno Dentist, your dental health is always our top priority, which is why we educate our patients about how to keep their enamel strong and halt additional erosion if some has already occurred.

Tooth enamel is the hardest substance in the body. Sadly, enamel erosion is extremely pervasive, though largely preventable. Enamel’s chief enemies are acidic foods and beverages. Other factors that can weaken enamel or wear it away are some medications, tooth grinding, acid reflux, gastrointestinal conditions, chewing ice or other hard substances, and eating disorders.

Here are five quick facts about enamel erosion:

  1. Enamel is unlike many other tissues in the body; once it is gone, it can’t be regenerated.
  2. According to the NIH, 41% of youth already have enamel erosion.
  3. Brushing too-forcefully can damage enamel.
  4. Diet sodas, sports drinks, and energy drinks are just as harmful as sugared sodas.
  5. Dry mouth can weaken enamel because it results in less saliva, which helps keep enamel healthy and strong.

If you have already experienced enamel erosion, it’s vital to halt continued erosion. There are several dental procedures that can protect the teeth that have been affected. Call The Reno Dentist in Reno NV to schedule an appointment. Our services include geneal and family dentistry, and cosmetic dentistry. Call today!

Contact The Reno Dentist:

775-322-5016

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

855 W Seventh St Ste 200
Reno, Nevada
89503

 

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Forensic Dentists: The Unsung Heroes of Dentistry

forensic dentistry RenoLet’s start with a disclaimer: at The Reno Dentist we are fully committed to delivering the highest quality of general and cosmetic dentistry services to living patients. In today’s post, however we will veer a bit off the beaten path, so to speak, and share some insight into an important dental specialty; forensic dentistry. The official term for the use of dentistry in criminal cases and post mortem identification is forensic odontology. These professionals are rarely recognized but play a fundamental role in crime and disaster investigations.

Dental X-rays, dentures, and bite marks are all used to provide clues about the victim’s identity and/or the manner of death. A person’s teeth are as singular as fingerprints and can often sustain forces such as fire, explosions, submersion in water, and natural decay without being destroyed.

Identifying One Victim

Identifying a victim through dental records is aided immensely when authorities have narrowed down a group of suspected victims to just a few people (or, ideally, just one) and can consult the dentists who had treated them. When the identity is totally unknown, a forensic dentist investigates other databases such as those kept by the armed forces and prisons. “Dental identifications are so much quicker and so much less expensive than DNA,” says Dr. Mark Bernstein, dentist and forensic dental consultant.

Identifying Hundreds of Victims

While identifying one victim of a homicide or accident can be relatively straightforward, natural disasters, plane crashes, and other large-scale tragedies are exponentially more involved.

According to Dr. Jeffrey Burkes, chief forensic dental consultant for the 9/11 attacks, over 140 dentists toiled to identify the fragments of remains that were recovered from the scene of the terrorist attacks. The identification effort was an extremely painstaking and complicated process. First, the dentists were assigned to one of four teams. The Go Team gathered evidence from the scene, the Antemortem Team analyzed existing dental records of suspected victims, the Postmortem Team X-rayed the retrieved dental evidence, and the Comparison Team compared the X-rays of the remains of unknown individuals to the records of missing people deemed to have been at the scene. “Dentistry fulfills one of its most important social, moral, and professional obligations by applying its unique knowledge and expertise to the task of identifying countless persons who are tragic victims of fires, catastrophes, disasters, and homicides,” says Burkes.

If you are looking for quality dental care in the Spanish Springs, Virginia City, or Carson City areas, we hope you’ll give The Reno Dentist a call at 775-322-5016 to schedule a consultation.  We offer a wide variety of dental services such as root canals, wisdom teeth extractions, dentures, cleanings and prepless veneers. Call us today!

Contact The Reno Dentist:

775-322-5016

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

855 W Seventh St Ste 200
Reno, Nevada
89503

 


The Future of Tooth Decay in Reno

The Future Of Tooth Decay In Reno

Dental patients in the Sparks area may wonder what would happen if they didn’t seek quality dental care on a regular basis. The answer isn’t pretty. A common result of untreated cavities are abscesses and tooth decay in Reno. A tooth abscess is an infection near the root of the tooth or between the gum and the tooth. This collection of pus can be very uncomfortable, either causing a shooting pain or a dull throbbing pain. You may also experience bad breath, fever, swollen neck glands, and feelings of general discomfort associated with the infection.

Avoiding Abscesses and Tooth Decay in Reno

Tooth abscesses can also be caused by a chip or a crack in the tooth that allows bacteria to enter. To avoid unpleasant dental problems like abscesses or tooth decay in Reno, have regular visits with your dentist. Also, don’t forget to brush after every meal. With daily brushing and flossing and regular check-ups and cleanings, you can keep your mouth in peak health. Make sure to include flossing once a day to get in those hard to reach places. For questions about which toothpaste to use or what kind of floss you should buy, ask our dental team during your consultation at The Reno Dentist.

Schedule an Appointment

If you are looking for quality dental care in the Reno area, come visit us here at The Reno Dentist. Dr. Shane Sykes has been a dentist in Reno since 2011. We can also answer any questions you have about smile makeover procedures such as dental crowns, veneers, teeth whitening,  dentures, porcelain veneers, and dental implants. We also offer general dentistry treatments such as root canals, wisdom teeth extraction, dental bonding, gum countouring. Call 775-322-5016 to schedule an appointment! We look forwarding to meeting you.

Contact The Reno Dentist:

775-322-5016

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

855 W Seventh St Ste 200
Reno, Nevada
89503


Treat Your Beautiful Smile in Reno to a Healthy Diet

experienced family dentist Reno Beautiful Smile in Reno

Proper nutrition can benefit you in a number of ways such as increased energy, improved immunity, glowing skin, mental clarity, and a lower risk of heart disease and stroke. How often, however, do you consider how your diet impacts your beautiful smile in Reno?

Your diet can impact your risk of cavities, enamel health, and gum condition. Healthy foods provide an environment that can prevent inflammation and infection. Vegetables, fruits, legumes, and nuts are the ideal choices for oral health. Calcium-fortified beverages, milk, and other dairy products provide vitamins, minerals, and calcium that helps with keeping teeth, bones, and gums healthy. Eating crispy fruits and vegetables, such as apples and celery, will help clean your teeth and gums, which will, in turn, improve your beautiful smile in Reno.

A healthy diet contains all the vital vitamins and minerals, and the most important mineral for teeth is fluoride. Don’t forget, however, that too much fluoride is dangerous. Dr. Sykes can advise you on the exact dosage of fluoride for your child, taking into account whether your municipal water is fluoridated. Even though adults’ teeth have already formed, fluoride aids in remineralizing weakened enamel to a degree. This powerful mineral is applied to teeth during comprehensive dental cleanings at The Reno Dentist and daily with fluoride toothpaste.

Bacteria that causes enamel-destroying plaque loves a steady diet of sugar—from soda, candy, and even fruit juices. When enamel wears away, the teeth become vulnerable to decay, cracks, and discoloration. Sugary foods that are especially dangerous are those that get trapped in the spaces between teeth and the little pits and cracks in the molars. Candies that are chewy or hard can lodge in these spaces and allow for the adverse sugar to have direct contact with enamel until brushing occurs. Be sure to brush after each meal and before bed. In addition, remember to floss or use a water irrigating method to dislodge food particles trapped in spaces. By eating well, brushing properly, flossing regularly, and avoiding foods that stick to your teeth, you can have a beautiful smile in Reno.

At our practice, we have a full-service dental practice in Reno. Helping our dental patients stay healthy is important to us, and so is helping them achieve the smile they want through cosmetic dentistry procedures such as veneers, teeth whitening, and smile makeovers. The Reno Dentist in Reno has been serving the Sparks area since 2011. Please contact us at 775-322-5016 if you are looking for quality dental care from a local Reno dentist with the experience, expertise, and personalized attention you deserve.

Contact The Reno Dentist:

775-322-5016

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

855 W Seventh St Ste 200
Reno, Nevada
89503