Archive for the ‘health’ Category

Dry Mouth

Monday, March 1st, 2010

dry mouth

Dry mouth, also known as xerostomia, is a problem that is more common in adults than children.  According to the American Dental Association, it can frequently be a symptom of a health condition or a side effect of a medication (i.e. decongestants, antihistamines, diuretics, and pain relievers). 

Sometimes dry mouth causes the following: a sore throat, burning sensation, hoarse voice, difficulty with speaking and/or swallowing, and nasal dryness.  Consequently, if chronic dry mouth is not remedied, it can lead to tooth decay and damage! This is because saliva is needed to prevent a dry oral cavity, neutralize acids and dispose of food/tartar build-up.  Plaque can create acids that cause damage to the teeth.   Furthermore, a dry mouth is usually accompanied by bad breath

If a person’s mouth is excessively dry, it can negatively affect the oral tissues, sometimes causing inflammation and a higher risk of getting an infection.  If you suspect you have chronic dry mouth, consult your dentist for a checkup and look for treatments. 

Source: MSN

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Protect Your Smile / Stop Halitosis

Thursday, February 25th, 2010

white smile

As you get older, you’ll realize how important proper oral hygiene is.  There are ways you can keep tabs on your oral health every month or so.  Check your mouth for white and red patches, tongue flakiness, pigmented lesions, and sores with uneven borders.  Oral cancer is rare with non-smokers, but it’s still possible to get it.  In order to check yourself for it, look at your outer and inner lips, and all sides of the tongue.  Look on the outside and inside if you cheers, and if there’s ever abnormalities that last longer than 14 days, ask a dental expert about it. 

Here are some things that you can pay attention to in order to protect your oral health:

Canker sores: these tend to pop up when people are stressed.  You can try a topical pain reliever directly on the spot.  Dentists can also use a soft-tissue laser to get rid of them.

Fix bad breath: If you’re not sure that you have bad breath at any given moment, use a cotton ball or gauze pad on the back of your tongue and smell it.  Whenever you brush your teeth, make sure to also get the back of your tongue, since this is where bacteria really like to proliferate.  Alcohol is found in most mouthwashes, but the problem with that is that alcohol helps dehydrate — thus drying the gums and reducing saliva flow.  After this, the bacteria multiples and causes the halitosis to worsen.  Keep in mind that TheraBreath sells an alcohol-free mouthwash!

Back of the mouth: Make sure to get this area when brushing, especially along the gum lines.  If you have a hard time accessing that area when brushing, slighty open the mouth.

Floss, floss, floss!  This is especially needed to prevent tartar buildup.  Toothbrushes can only get so far between the teeth–only 1 millimeter under the gums.  The problem is that gum pockers are usually 3-4 millimeters, which is deeper.  The bacteria feeds off the particles that get caught in these pockets, and if you don’t take care of the issue, you’ll have tooth decay and in extreme cases, jawbone loss.  Keep in mind that 80% of adults allegedly have a form of gum disease!

By practicing good oral hygiene, you’ll help keep your smile white and clean!

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Yogurt: Tooth Decay, Gum Disease and Bad Breath Cure

Monday, February 22nd, 2010

sugarless yogurt

According to Japanese research, sugarless yogurt can serve as another remedy for bad breath, tooth decay, and gum disease.  Yogurt had allegedly reduced the levels of hydrogen suphide (a primary cause of halitosis) in 80% of participants in the study conducted by the International Association for Dental Research.  The plaque and gum disease levels were also noticeably lower among those who ate the yogurt. The main bacteria that help reduce bad breath are Lactobacillus bulgaricus and Streptococcus thermophilus.

The study group of volunteers ate 90 grams of yogurt every day for six weeks, while maintaining a strict diet, medication intake, and oral hygiene routine. 

People should consider having sugar-free yogurt as a healthy snack, since sugary snacks rank high in causing tooth decay.  According to statistics, 1/4 people have chronic bad breath, and 19/20 have gum disease sometime in their lives!  By cutting down on the consumption of sugary snacks and chocolate and adopting a good oral hygiene routine, one can start adopting better oral health.

Source: BBC News

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Dental Care for Rabbits – Bad Breath Bunnies

Friday, February 19th, 2010

bad breath rabbits

Those of you who own those adorable bunnies may not realize how vital proper oral care is for them.  Most people do not know how many teeth rabbits actually have.  Besides the four large incisors, they have two tiny incisors, and six upper and five lower cheek teeth on each side.  Rabbits have teeth that are very much like horses’ teeth.  Their teeth are designed for constant wear because they are open-rooted, so the teeth grow nonstop their whole lives.  Because of this, rabbits need a certain amount of fiber in their diets.

A rabbit who only eats pellets will not be able to achieve the constant wear on the teeth that nature intended for it to have.  This can cause abnormal wear to the teeth and possibly sharp edges and points in the teeth, which could in turn cause cuts to the tissues in the oral cavity.  It may cause malocclusion, which is what is caused when the teeth do not meet correctly.   Malocclusion can cause problems like roots that become impacted, elongated, and inflamed, as well as possible bone infections or “jaw abscess”.  Once rabbits have malocclusion, it is very unlikely that the teeth will ever return to normal, and it may require trips to the vet, tooth trims, and surgery. 

As with humans, tooth problems in rabbits cannot be ignored.  Rabbits are prey animals, meaning they are not designed to show signs any illnesses or problems, so a pet rabbit needs to be brought to a vet (experienced in rabbits) regularly to check its health.  A complete exam may require the rabbit to be under anesthesia.  Also, dogs, cats, and birds are not the only animals that can have bad breath–rabbits can have halitosis as well!  If you notice that your rabbit has excessive salivation, tooth grinding, or bad breath, you should definitely take it in to the vet as soon as you can. 

Aside from bringing your rabbit to the vet 1-2 times a year, you can also make sure it has an appropriate diet.  Some things that you can offer your rabbit to provide a fibrous diet are hay, tree branches, leaves and twigs.  It is also important that all of these are gathered from vegetation that is not treated with herbicides, pesticides, fertilizer, etc.   Also, try to place the branches in water or put them in the freezer overnight to kill any insects. 

Rabbit-safe vegetation:

  • Orange/lemon trees: rabbits should be fed fresh or dried branches
  • Apple trees: fresh or dried branches
  • Willow: fresh or dried branches
  • Maple/ash/pine trees: dried branches
  • Rose canes: remove thorns first, and feed the branches fresh or dried

What are some tips for monitoring the dental health of my rabbit?

  • Make sure your rabbit has a good appetite, eats its daily diet of pellets and veggies, and chews his hay often
  • Monitor any changes in the rabbit’s eating habits
  • In order to check for any abnormalities, feel the left and right sides of the rabbit’s head (meaning in front of the eyes, on the cheekbone below the eyes, under the lower jaw, etc.).  If you notice any lump on one side that is not on the other side, take the rabbit to the vet ASAP.
  • Lift up the rabbit’s upper lips to see if the incisors meet evenly– if not, go to the vet!
  • Under the chin, look for any excessive salivating/wetness (not including moisture from eating veggies, drinking water, etc.)
  • If you can smell rabbit bad breath, go to the vet!
  • Eye/nasal discharge can signify that there are teeth problems
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Bad Breath is a Symptom of Gum Disease in Dogs and Cats

Friday, February 19th, 2010

bad breath in pets

Even though February is National Pet Dental Health Month, proper oral hygiene for pets should be practiced year-round. Bad breath in your pet can be a symptom of an oral health dilemma. Taking your dog or cat to the veterinarian is one of the most important things that you can do to prevent and treat periodontal (gum) disease in your pet. According to sources, an estimated 68% of cats and 78% of dogs that are 3 years of age and older have a form of oral disease.

In recognition of National Pet Dental Health Month, more information is being released for pet owners and vets to help improve or maintain a good level of oral hygiene for their animals. It reminds us of the old saying, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” All breeds of these animals are susceptible to developing periodontal disease. Studies show that the top breeds of dogs that are predisposed to getting gum disease are the Toy Poodle, Yorkshire Terrier, Maltese, Pomeranian, Shetland Sheepdog, Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Papillion, Standard Poodle, Dachshund and Havanese. The disease is most prominent in the following types of cats: the Himalayan, Siamese, and Persian.

Each year that your pet is alive, the risks of developing the disease actually increase 20%. Vets everywhere should insist that pet owners should treat the disease if it is diagnosed, so that it does not become serious.  Let’s not forget that TheraBreath has an excellent oral health formula specifically made for dogs and cats. Stop bad breath in dogs and cats today!

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