Wednesday 24 March 2021

Cavity Fillings: What to Expect, Types & Potential Problems

The process of filling cavities is a fairly simple and straightforward one that can be done right at your dentist's office.

Filling Cavities: What to Expect
You should expect to be at your dentist's office for around an hour. This gives him or her enough time to take x-rays if needed, talk to you about the procedure and complete the dental work. Before filling cavities, your dentist will numb your teeth, gums and surrounding skin to avoid and lessen discomfort during the procedure. Next, he or she will drill out the decay in the tooth and replace it with a filling. This process only takes a few minutes.

Once you're done, your mouth will probably remain numb for a few more hours. There aren’t any significant risks associated with filling cavities, but be sure to keep your dentist’s contact information on hand in case you have any questions or complications.

The most common use of tooth fillings is to fill a cavity in the tooth. But tooth fillings also can be used to repair damage to teeth caused by teeth grinding (bruxism) or to replace part of a broken tooth.

Types of Cavity Fillings
Many options are available for tooth fillings, and all of them have their pros and cons. Types of tooth fillings include gold, silver amalgam (a composite of mercury, silver, and other metals), tooth-colored composite material, porcelain, and a special type of glass. The best tooth fillings for you will depend on cost, what your insurance may cover, and your aesthetic preferences.

There is a wide variety of materials used for filling cavities and they vary in strength and color. The two most common types are amalgam and composite.
  • Amalgam Fillings: Amalgam has been used by dental professionals for more than a century; it is the most researched material used for filling cavities. Amalgam fillings are strong and are therefore ideal for filling cavities in the back of the mouth such as in the molars, where chewing takes place. Since they are made of a combination of several metallic elements, amalgam fillings can be noticeable when you laugh or smile. These fillings are among the least expensive of all cavity-filling materials.
  • Composite Fillings: Sometimes referred to as composites or filled resins, these fillings feature a combination of glass or quartz filler and can be made to match the color of your tooth. Composite fillings are also fairly durable and are ideal for small-to-mid-size restorations in areas of your mouth that perform moderate chewing.
  • Metals: Gold or silver amalgam are the most common metals used for a cavity filling. Gold fillings can cost as much as 10 times more than silver amalgam fillings, but some people prefer the appearance of gold to silver fillings if they want the durability of metal vs. a less-durable composite material. Some people don’t like the appearance of metal fillings, but metal fillings can last as long as 10-15 years before they need to be replaced.
  • Ceramic: A ceramic cavity filling (usually made of porcelain) is tooth-colored, and it may be less likely to show tooth stains over time than a composite cavity filling. But price is a factor—a ceramic filling can be nearly as expensive as a gold cavity filling.
  • Glass Ionomer: This blend of acrylic and glass is used to create a cavity filling that releases fluoride to help protect teeth. But a glass ionomer cavity filling is less durable than other types, and may need to be replaced in as little as five years.
Taking Care of Cavity Fillings
You may experience some sensitivity and pain after receiving tooth fillings, but this discomfort should subside. Don't neglect your oral care routine. Instead, try products designed specifically to protect sensitive teeth. Crest Pro-Health Sensitive Plus Enamel Shield Toothpaste protects sensitive teeth, and also provides protection against future tooth decay. In addition, Oral-B Glide Floss for sensitive gums shouldn’t irritate the area around tooth fillings.

When to Replace a Cavity Filling
Tooth fillings usually last for many years before they need to be replaced. But tooth fillings can wear out over years of chewing. If you clench or grind your teeth, you may need to have tooth fillings replaced sooner.

If you notice signs of wear on your tooth fillings, such as cracks or worn areas, see your dentist to have the filling replaced as soon as possible. Continuing to chew with a damaged filling can cause the tooth to crack and require additional repair that is more expensive and more complicated than a simple cavity filling. If additional tooth decay develops around a filling, whether or not the filling is damaged, your dentist may choose to repair the tooth with a crown instead of a second cavity filling.

Other Potential Problems with Cavity Fillings
It’s important to know about potential problems, so you can see your dentist promptly to have cavity fillings adjusted or repaired. Possible complications from cavity fillings include: 
  • Infection: Sometimes a cavity filling will pull away from the tooth to which it is attached, creating a small space. This space can be a breeding ground for bacteria that can cause additional tooth decay. If you notice a space between your tooth and your cavity filling, visit a dentist as soon as possible.
  • Damage: Sometimes a cavity filling breaks, cracks, or falls out. Damage to a filling can occur when you bite down on something hard or if you are hit in the mouth while playing sports. See a dentist as soon as you notice damage to a cavity filling to avoid irritation and infection of the unprotected tooth.
The above article is from

Lim and Yabu  
Geraldine Lim, DDS & Eric Yabu, DDS   
4174 Park Boulevard, Suite A  
Oakland, CA 94602  
(510) 530-7000

Monday 15 March 2021

Seal Out Tooth Decay

Brushing and flossing are the best ways to help prevent cavities, but it’s not always easy to clean every nook and cranny of your teeth – especially those back teeth you use to chew (called molars). Molars are rough, uneven and a favorite place for leftover food and cavity-causing bacteria to hide. 

Still, there’s another safety net to help keep those teeth clean. It’s called a sealant, and it is a thin, protective coating (made from plastic or other dental materials) that adheres to the chewing surface of your back teeth. They’re no substitute for brushing and flossing, but they can keep cavities from forming and may even stop early stages of decay from becoming a full-blown cavity. 

In fact, sealants have been shown to reduce the risk of decay by nearly 80% in molars. This is especially important when it comes to your child's dental health. In October 2016, the Centers for Disease Control released a report on the importance of sealants for school-aged children, of which only 43% of children ages 6-11 have. According to the CDC, "school-age children without sealants have almost three times more cavities than children with sealants."

You may have many questions about sealants, and we have answers for you below. Read on to learn more about sealing out tooth decay. 

How Do Sealants Work? 
Think of them as raincoats for your teeth. When the cavity-causing bacteria that live in everyone’s mouth meet leftover food particles, they produce acids that can create holes in teeth. These holes are cavities. After sealant has been applied it keeps those bits of food out and stops bacteria and acid from settling on your teeth—just like a raincoat keeps you clean and dry during a storm.

Who Can Get Sealants? 
Children and adults can benefit from sealants, but the earlier you get them, the better. Your first molars appear around age 6, and second molars break through around age 12. Sealing these teeth as soon as they come through can keep them cavity-free from the start, which helps save time and money in the long run. Ask your dentist if sealants are a good option for you and your family. 

How Are Sealants Applied?
It’s a quick and painless process. Your dentist will clean and dry your tooth before placing an acidic gel on your teeth. This gel roughs up your tooth surface so a strong bond will form between your tooth and the sealant. After a few seconds, your dentist will rinse off the gel and dry your tooth once again before applying the sealant onto the grooves of your tooth. Your dentist will then use a special blue light to harden the sealant. 

Can Sealants Be Placed Over Cavities? 
Sealants can be used over areas of early decay to prevent further damage to your tooth. Because some sealants are clear, your dentist can keep an eye on the tooth to make sure the sealant is doing its job. 

Are There Any Side Effects? 
With the exception of an allergy that may exist, there are no known side effects from sealants.  

Is There BPA In Sealants? 
Yes, there is a tiny amount of BPA in sealants but not enough to cause you or a loved one any harm. In fact, you get more exposure to BPA by simply touching a receipt, using cosmetics or coming in contact with dust.

BPA in sealants 

How Long Do Sealants Last? 
Sealants will often last for several years before they need to be reapplied. During your regular dental visit, your dentist will check the condition of the sealant and can reapply them as needed. 

Are Sealants Covered By Dental Plans? 
Some plans do cover sealants, so call your dental benefit company to find out what kind of coverage you have.

The above article is from

Lim and Yabu  
Geraldine Lim, DDS & Eric Yabu, DDS   
4174 Park Boulevard, Suite A  
Oakland, CA 94602  
(510) 530-7000

Saturday 6 March 2021

Strep Throat and Tonsils: What's the Connection?

If your throat is sore and your tonsils feel swollen, it can be hard to know if you have strep throat or if it's something else. The good news is that your doctor can help your figure out if you're experiencing strep throat. Read on to find out what causes strep throat, its symptoms, and the connection between strep throat and tonsils.

What Is Strep Throat?
Strep throat is a bacterial infection that makes your throat feel sore and scratchy. It accounts for just a small percentage of sore throats. According to the Mayo Clinic, the specific bacteria that causes strep throat is group A Streptococcus (group A strep). The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention points out that the same bacteria can cause scarlet fever and rheumatic fever, especially if untreated.

So how can you get strep throat? Group A strep bacteria are highly contagious and can spread through airborne droplets if someone with the infection coughs or sneezes near you or through sharing food or drinks with someone infected. You can also get infected by touching a doorknob or other surface that has bacteria on it and then touching your nose, mouth, or eyes. While it's kids who most commonly experience strep throat, people of all ages can get infected, and it has a higher occurrence in winter and early spring.

Have you ever wondered if you can get strep throat from not brushing your teeth or tooth infections? While this isn't true, it's still important to brush your teeth twice a day to prevent tooth decay and dental caries, commonly known as cavities.

What Is the Connection between Strep Throat and Your Tonsils?
If you're wondering if your tonsils are affected by strep throat, the answer is yes. Strep throat can cause your tonsils to feel red and swollen, sometimes even having white patches or streaks of pus on them.

The Mayo Clinic states that other signs and symptoms include:
  • Throat pain
  • Pain while swallowing
  • Swollen or tender lymph nodes
  • Fever, body ache, and headaches
  • Rash
  • Nausea and vomiting, especially in kids
It's worth noting that you might have some or many of these symptoms and not have strep throat. Likewise, it's possible to carry group A strep bacteria without showing any signs.

Strep Throat versus Tonsillitis
We've established that your tonsils can be affected by strep throat. Does that mean strep throat is just an interchangeable term for tonsillitis? That's actually not the case. According to the Mayo Clinic, while tonsillitis can be caused by group A streptococcus, the same bacterium that causes strep throat, it can also be caused by other strains of strep and other bacteria.

That's why if you or your child is experiencing symptoms like a sore throat or swollen tonsils, it's essential to consult with your doctor to get a proper diagnosis and receive appropriate treatment. While you can go to your dentist if you think you have tonsillitis, your general physician will probably be the best healthcare professional to consult in this situation.

If you have strep throat, your doctor will most likely prescribe an oral antibiotic. If taken within the first 48 hours of becoming sick, the antibiotics will decrease the length and severity of your symptoms, as well as reduce the chance of you spreading it to anyone else.

If you have tonsillitis, your doctor will first figure out if it's caused by a virus or a bacteria, like group A strep. If a virus has caused your illness, rest and at-home strategies are the only treatment. But if a bacterium causes your tonsillitis, your doctor will most likely prescribe a course of antibiotics.

If your child has recurring strep throat, you might also wonder if removing the tonsils might help. The Mayo Clinic notes that if your child is diagnosed with strep throat seven or more times a year, a tonsillectomy(removal of the tonsils) can reduce the frequency and severity of strep throat infections. That said, your child may still get strep throat even after having their tonsils removed.

Strep throat can be really painful, no matter what age you get it at. If you're worried about sore tonsils, don't hesitate to consult with your doctor. Getting the right treatment as soon as possible is key to ensuring you are healthy and pain-free!

The above article is from

Lim and Yabu  
Geraldine Lim, DDS & Eric Yabu, DDS   
4174 Park Boulevard, Suite A  
Oakland, CA 94602  
(510) 530-7000

Wednesday 24 February 2021


Adding fluoride to public water supplies is a safe and effective way to prevent tooth decay and has played a major role in in improving the public’s dental health for more than 70 years.

"Fluoride’s effectiveness in preventing tooth decay extends throughout one’s life, resulting in fewer—and less severe̵—cavities," says former Surgeon General Vivek H. Murthy. Read on to learn more about what the 

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has proclaimed as one of 10 great public health achievements of the 20th century.

What Is Community Water Fluoridation?    
Fluoridation of community water supplies is simply the adjustment of the existing, naturally occurring fluoride in drinking water to an optimal level for the prevention of tooth decay. Think of it this way: Water that has been fortified with fluoride is similar to fortifying milk with Vitamin D, table salt with iodine, and bread and cereals with folic acid. 

The number of communities who make the choice to fluoridate their water continues to grow. The latest data show that in 2014, 74.4% of the U.S. population on public water systems, or 211.4 million people, had access to optimally fluoridated water.

How Much Fluoride Is Recommended In Community Water Systems?
It is recommended that community water systems adjust the amount of fluoride to 0.7 milligrams per liter of water. Use the chart below to see what that amount is equivalent to. 

Fluoride facts

5 Reasons Why Fluoride in Water is Good for Communities
  1. Prevents tooth decay. Fluoride in water is the most efficient way to prevent one of the most common childhood diseases – tooth decay. One study has shown that children who live in communities without fluoridation are three times more likely to end up in the hospital to undergo dental surgery.  
  2. Protects all ages against cavities. Studies show that fluoride in community water systems prevents at least 25 percent of tooth decay in children and adults, even in an era with widespread availability of fluoride from other sources, such as fluoride toothpaste. Why fluoride is called nature's cavity fighter.
  3. Safe and effective. For more than 70 years, the best available scientific evidence consistently has indicated that community water fluoridation is safe and effective. It has been endorsed by numerous U.S. Surgeons General, and more than 100 health organizations recognize the health benefits of water fluoridation for preventing dental decay, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the American Medical Association, the World Health Organization and the American Dental Association
  4. Saves money. When it comes to the cost of treating dental disease, everyone pays. Not just those who need treatment, but the entire community – through higher health insurance premiums and higher taxes. The average lifetime cost per person to fluoridate a water supply is less than the cost of one dental filling.
  5. It’s natural. Fluoride is naturally present in groundwater and the oceans. Water fluoridation is the adjustment of fluoride to a recommended level for preventing tooth decay. It’s similar to fortifying other foods and beverages, like fortifying salt with iodine, milk with vitamin D, orange juice with calcium and bread with folic acid.
If you have specific questions about your family’s fluoride needs, please contact your family dentist, pediatrician or physician.

The above article is from

Lim and Yabu  
Geraldine Lim, DDS & Eric Yabu, DDS   
4174 Park Boulevard, Suite A  
Oakland, CA 94602  
(510) 530-7000

Monday 15 February 2021

Teeth-Healthy Snacks for Kids With Growing Teeth

You don't need another reason to feed your child nutritious snacks. Though, you might be interested in knowing those wholesome foods that fuel your child's growing body also impact the health and development of their teeth. Understand how your child's foods affect oral health and find out which teeth-healthy snacks to keep stocked in your pantry or fridge.

A Teeth-Healthy Snack Plan for Kids
The eating habits your kids learn today will impact them for the rest of their lives. Teach them the "what," "when," and "how" of teeth-healthy snacking to set them up for years of nutritious choices.

What Are Teeth-Healthy Snacks?
With more options than ever before, it can be challenging to determine which kid-friendly snacks are the healthiest choices. When it comes to your child's teeth, foods high in vitamins and minerals, and low in sugar make the best snacks. Sugar feeds the bacteria in plaque and causes it to release an acid that attacks the enamel on your teeth. If left unchecked, these attacks can lead to tooth decay. Choosing naturally sugar-free snacks is an excellent starting point for teeth-healthy eating.

When Should You Snack?
Kids need regular snacks to fuel their growing bodies throughout the day. However, it's important to implement a schedule for meal and snack times, so they don't constantly graze. Acid attacks can occur up to 20 minutes after you finish eating before they are neutralized, so your kids' teeth need a break between meals. If you feed them a sugary snack, serve it alongside other teeth-friendly foods. This will reduce the effects of acid production and help clear the mouth of sugary food debris.

How Do You Limit the Effects of Sugary Snacks?
It's not practical (or fun) to eliminate sugar from your child's diet. Enjoying a slice of birthday cake or a bowl of ice cream is an integral part of growing up. But you can limit the effects of these sugary snacks on your kids' teeth. Start with making sweets a special occasion instead of a daily event. Your kids will be more excited to partake in the occasional treat, and their teeth will appreciate the break from regular sugar baths. Also, be picky about the types of sugar. Avoid hard and sticky foods like lollipops or fruit gummies that stay longer in the mouth and prolong acid attacks. Finally, follow up sugary snacks by brushing teeth twice a day and flossing daily to remove plaque and food debris.

Snacks Kids Can Eat for Healthy Teeth
Now that you understand how to build a teeth-healthy snack plan for your kids, here are some ideas for snacks your kids will love.
Vegetables and fruits. The U.S. Department of Agriculture recommends filling at least half your child's plate with vegetables and fruits. These foods are high in water and fiber, which helps balance out any sugars they might contain. Plus, chewing on a crunchy apple or carrot helps stimulate saliva production and clear away food particles from your teeth. Some fruit and veggie snack ideas include:
  • Raw carrots and celery sticks dipped in hummus or ranch dressing
  • Sliced apples with sugar-free peanut butter
  • Spinach, frozen berries, and plain yogurt blended into a smoothie
Dairy. Dairy products like milk, cheese, and yogurt can be low in sugar and rich in calcium, which is excellent for strengthening your child's teeth. Plus, cheese is a naturally chewy food that helps stimulate saliva production. Meanwhile, yogurt can be easily rinsed from teeth after eating. Some dairy snack ideas include:
  • String cheese
  • Plain yogurt with berries
  • Glass of milk
Lean Proteins. Meat, poultry, fish, milk, and eggs not only contain valuable protein, but they are also rich in phosphorous, which can help strengthen teeth. Some lean protein snack ideas include:
  • Boiled eggs
  • Roasted chicken and veggie kabobs
  • Sugar-free beef jerky
Seeds and nuts. High in protein and minerals and low in sugar and carbohydrates, nuts and seeds can be a delicious teeth-healthy option. Plus, some seeds and nuts — like chia seeds or almonds — are high in calcium, strengthening teeth.
  • Dry-roasted almonds with sea salt
  • Chia seeds, unsweetened almond milk, and fruit mixed and set overnight into pudding
  • Trail mix with favorite nuts, seeds, and dried fruit with no sugar added
Water. Fluoridated water is arguably one of the most essential components of snack time. Fluoride helps teeth become more resistant to acid attacks, and water helps rinse away any leftover food debris. Plus, it replaces other kid drinks — like fruit juices, sodas, and sports drinks — all of which are high in sugar. Make water more appealing by infusing it with fruit or adding carbonation.

How to Make Eating Healthy Fun
If your kids are used to sugary and starchy snacks, it might be difficult to trade in cookies for carrots. Make healthy eating fun with some of these tips:
Cook meals together. Give your child ownership of the healthy eating process by including them in the prep work. Find a cookbook full of recipes that appeal to kids and let them choose one or two to make throughout the week. Older children can learn the basics of chopping and roasting vegetables. Younger kids can help you thread pre-chopped veggies onto skewers or layer fruit and plain yogurt for a parfait. Mixing up a veggie dip, wrapping up a turkey roll-up, or placing toothpicks into cheese cubes are all great activities for little hands.
Plant a garden. Start healthy eating habits right at the source: homegrown vegetables. Stick to a few vegetables that are relatively easy to grow, such as lettuce or peppers. Or even begin with a window-sill herb like basil or cilantro. When it's time to harvest the fruits — or veggies — of your labor, pick a delicious recipe together to make a snack the kids can be proud of.
Make healthy snacking convenient. Part of making healthy snacking fun is making it easy. A kid will rarely choose celery sticks when potato chips are available. So swap out that candy for fruit and those crackers for almonds. Then, make your healthy choices extra convenient by putting containers of pre-cut veggies and fruits in the fridge where your child can see them. If you have a pantry snack drawer, fill it with single servings of nuts, sugar-free beef jerky, and nut butters.
Keep going. Healthy changes won't happen overnight. Kids may need up to 12 exposures of a particular food before they decide they "like" it. So keep serving those carrots alongside other healthy options you know they'll eat. Additionally, try preparing foods in different ways — such as roasted broccoli instead of raw florets or plain chicken instead of chicken with taco seasoning. Some quick adjustments might help overcome any texture or flavor preferences.
Keeping children nourished and well-fed is no easy task, so great job pursuing teeth-healthy snack options for your little ones. By encouraging your child to eat healthy now, you are instilling lifelong habits. Simply stay patient and remember the goal: Children who learn to love foods that protect their teeth and help them grow.

The above article is from

Lim and Yabu  
Geraldine Lim, DDS & Eric Yabu, DDS   
4174 Park Boulevard, Suite A  
Oakland, CA 94602  
(510) 530-7000

Saturday 6 February 2021

Gum Disease Pictures: What do Healthy Gums Look Like?

If you suspect you have gum disease and are experiencing some of its symptoms such as sore gums, it may help to compare your gums to the pictures of healthy gums and gum disease below, from gingivitis to advanced periodontitis. If your gums look like they’re in the early stages of gum disease, bring it to the attention of your dentist and hygienist at your next visit.

The most common way to identify gingivitis is to look for gum inflammation and bleeding.
Early Periodontitis Pictures
During the early stages of periodontitis, symptoms include noticeably receding gum and pockets between gums and teeth.

Advanced Periodontitis
As periodontitis progresses, tissue and bone that support teeth are lost, causing loose teeth.
Healthy Gums vs. Unhealthy Gums
If you have healthy gums, they will look firm and pink. Some signs of unhealthy gums include redness and swelling, gums that bleed when you brush or floss your teeth, and gums that appear to be pulling away from the teeth. There are a few factors that can undermine healthy gums, including tobacco use, malnutrition, poor oral hygiene, and poor immunity due to more severe medical problems. Also, certain medications, including some types of antihistamines, decongestants, and painkillers, can cause dry mouth, which can promote gum disease. 

It's important to remember that healthy gums aren’t just important for your oral health. Maintaining healthy gums can also be important for your overall health. Numerous research studies suggest an association between periodontitis and other more serious chronic health conditions such as diabetes and heart disease. In fact, there are now several studies that suggest an association between advanced gum disease and heart disease or stroke. 

How to Get Healthy Gums Again
If you have mild gum disease (gingivitis), you can regain healthy gums by paying attention to oral hygiene. Using an anti-gingivitis toothpaste like Crest Gum Detoxify Deep Clean helps reverse early signs of gum damage and gives you clinically proven healthier gums. But serious gum disease, known as periodontitis, requires more sophisticated treatment to restore healthy gums. Your dentist may use one of these techniques to treat severe gum disease and promote healthy gums:
  • Root scaling and planing: Removal of the plaque and tartar on your teeth above and below the gum line.
  • Gingivectomy: Removal of diseased gum tissue, and elimination of any pockets between the teeth and gums where bacteria can easily grow.
  • Extraction: Removal of loose teeth, or removal of teeth that are badly decayed or damaged.
  • Flap surgery: Cleaning the teeth roots and repairing any bone damage.
How to Maintain Healthy Gums
Because a healthy mouth starts at the gums, maintaining an oral health routine focused on the health of your gums in crucial to the overall health of your mouth. When you have healthy gums, your teeth are well-supported by the tissue in your gums and your chances for long-term oral health are significantly increased. If you don’t maintain healthy gums, you are more likely to have gum disease, which can progress to a number of problems with your teeth and oral health. And as we talked about above, other long-term, chronic health conditions can be associated with periodontitis, a serious form of gum disease.

In order to help keep your gums healthy, there are several easy steps you should take on a daily basis. Here is a checklist you need for healthy gums:
  • Toothbrush: When selecting a toothbrush for healthy gums, look for a soft-bristle brush that has bristles of varying heights to reduce irritation. This will help the toothbrush stimulate your gums and get into hard-to-reach areas.
  • Toothpaste: The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends brushing twice a day with an ADA-accepted fluoride toothpaste. Comprehensive all-in-one formulas such as Crest Pro-Health Toothpaste can provide a number of benefits that help care for your teeth and gums for a healthy mouth. You may also want to consider a toothpaste like Crest Gum Detoxify Deep Clean which is formulated specifically for you gums. It can reach and neutralize the plaque bacteria built up around the gum line that can cause bleeding gums and even gum disease.
  • Dental Floss: Flossing may be one of the most important things you can do to help prevent gum problems and maintain healthy gums. There are also types of soft floss that make flossing easier, so people with sensitive gums can have healthy gums. Another option: interdental devices such as dental picks and flossers can be used to clean between the teeth and promote healthy gums. 
  • Mouthwash: Using an anti-gingivitis mouthwash as part of your oral care routine can help kill the bacteria that cause plaque to maintain a healthy gums and teeth. And mouthwashes may offer you additional benefits like whitening, enamel protection, or cavity protection.
  • Gum Stimulator: Available at most drug stores, a gum stimulator can help you keep clean and healthy gums. This simple device features a rubber tip that is used to gently clean and stimulate gums for good circulation and to help prevent gum disease.
  • Regular Dental Visits: Regular visits to a dentist are important for healthy gums because the dentist can identify problems early before they become serious. Follow a regular oral care routine of brushing your teeth at least twice a day and flossing once a day to maintain healthy gums. Some dentists may recommend an antibacterial rinse or mouthwash to help preserve healthy gums after you are treated for gum disease.
The above article is from

Lim and Yabu  
Geraldine Lim, DDS & Eric Yabu, DDS   
4174 Park Boulevard, Suite A  
Oakland, CA 94602  
(510) 530-7000

Sunday 24 January 2021

Busting 7 Myths about Oral Health

It's essential to know the truth about oral health because bad oral hygiene can lead to tooth decay, tooth loss, and other complications. Oral health can also impact your overall health! There tend to be many misconceptions about oral health, but it's essential you know the facts. Learn the truth behind common dental myths so you know how to take care of your teeth.

Myth #1: 'Sugar-free sodas are better for my teeth'
Just because soda is sugar-free, it doesn't mean it's harmless to your teeth. Sugar surely contributes to tooth decay and cavities, but sugar isn't the only thing. Even sugar-free sodas contain acids and carbohydrates combined with bacteria and saliva to result in plaque, also known as biofilm, buildup. If your teeth are not cleaned regularly, that plaque buildup can lead to tooth decay and gingivitis.

Myth #2: 'Dental health doesn't affect my overall health.'
Oral health is a good indicator of overall health, and poor oral hygiene can increase your risk for disease in other parts of your body. Moderate to advanced gum disease increases the risk of heart disease and is more prevalent among people with diabetes. Bacteria and other germs can spread from the mouth to other areas of the body via blood flow. Bacteria that spread to the heart can cause damage and inflammation.

Myth #3: 'I can wait to see the dentist until it's an emergency.'
With dental health, prevention is vital. Keeping your dental hygiene appointments and check-ups allow your dentist and dental hygienist to spot and treat issues before they become emergencies. As discussed above, you don't want to wait until your dental health affects your overall health.

Myth #4: 'Cavities in baby teeth aren't as serious as cavities in adult teeth.'
Oral health in children is essential, even if they lose their baby teeth. Tooth decay and cavities can impact how adult teeth form under the gums. Also, if kids don't learn how to take care of their teeth while they still have their baby teeth, they will be unlikely to keep good habits once they are older. So, encourage and teach your children to brush and floss daily according to a dental professional's recommendation.

Myth #5: 'Silver dental fillings aren't risky.'
"Silver" fillings are dental amalgam fillings because they are made from a combination of multiple types of metal. They are strong, durable, and long-lasting. However, dental amalgam fillings also contain small amounts of mercury. In large amounts, mercury is toxic. According to the FDA, dental amalgam fillings are safe to use in most children and adults. If you know you have sensitivities or are allergic to tin, copper and other metals, tell your dentist. They can use fillings of another material.

Myth #6: 'Gum disease isn't very common.'
Gum disease is actually widespread. According to a study for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), up to 52 percent of people age 30 and older have gum disease. As we get older, we're naturally more susceptible to infections, including gingivitis and gum disease. For example, 64 percent of adults age 65 and older have gum disease.

Myth #7: 'Pregnant women can ignore bloody gums.'
The American Dental Association (ADA) notes that pregnancy hormones can lead to sensitive and inflamed gums. This condition has been called "pregnancy gingivitis" because dental plaque builds up on the teeth and irritates the gums. Symptoms include red, sore, and bleeding gums.

However, gingivitis doesn't occur in all pregnant women. Brushing your teeth, cleaning between your teeth with floss, water flossers, or interdental brushes daily, and additional dental cleanings will abate bleeding gums. Preventing gingivitis from turning into gum disease is crucial for mom's and baby's health.

We've busted several myths about oral health. Keep up with your daily oral care routine and ask your dentist and dental hygienist for tips about taking care of your teeth. They'll help you sort fact from fiction.

The above article is from

Lim and Yabu  
Geraldine Lim, DDS & Eric Yabu, DDS   
4174 Park Boulevard, Suite A  
Oakland, CA 94602  
(510) 530-7000