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 Arbor Lakes Dental in Maple Grove, 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 a reminder 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 Replace It 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 going to be bent and frayed. There may be some gunk – dried toothpaste foam – starting to build up, too. 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.

Manual or Electric?

Should you use a manual toothbrush, or go electric? This boils down to personal preference. Provided you use them correctly, both do a good job cleaning your teeth. A manual toothbrush may take a little longer, and requires you to be sure to brush up and down and in little circles. But electric toothbrushes are effective, and great for anyone with agility issues. At the end of the day, though, the choice is yours.

To recap: for good dental health, the important thing is to change your toothbrush every three months. At Arbor Lakes Dental in Maple Grove, we offer family and restorative dentistry. Schedule your next checkup with us today.

Contact Arbor Lakes Dental – Jamie L. Sledd, DDS:

763-494-4443

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

12000 Elm Creek Blvd N Ste 230
Maple Grove, Minnesota
55369

 

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Why Visit The Dentist?

Why Visit The Dentist?

At Arbor Lakes Dental in Maple Grove, we want to see each one of our patients for a cleaning and checkup twice a year. Most of the time we try to get you to schedule your next appointment even as you leave the office from your latest one. There are some very good reasons for that.

Along with daily brushing and flossing, six-month cleanings and checkups are the best way to ensure you have good dental health. That means clean teeth with no cavities, and pink healthy gums.

Most appointments begin with a cleaning from the hygienist, but not always. During the cleaning we’ll scrape any tartar from your teeth. Tartar is hardened plaque, and you can’t get it off with a toothbrush and floss. That’s one of the reasons brushing twice a day is so important! Scraping tartar off of your teeth is known as scaling.

Once your teeth are scaled, we’ll polish them with a gritty toothpaste. This is pretty harsh stuff, and it removes any surface stains on your teeth. Sometimes patients wonder if they can get something like it for use at home. The trouble with that is that it’s just too abrasive to use every day.

After scaling and brushing, the last step is flossing. Then, it’s the dentist’s turn.

During the checkup we look for any new cavities that may have appeared since your last visit. We might take X-rays, although this is not done at every visit. We’ll examine your gums, too, for any signs of gum disease.

Finally, we’ll look at your tongue, throat, face and and head, and your neck. We’re checking for swelling or redness, or any signs of cancer.

Why should you visit the dentist? Your dental health is important to your overall health! At Arbor Lakes Dental in Maple Grove, we’ll take good care of your dental health. Services include family and restorative dentistry. Schedule your next checkup today!

Contact Arbor Lakes Dental – Jamie L. Sledd, DDS:

763-494-4443

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

12000 Elm Creek Blvd N Ste 230
Maple Grove, Minnesota
55369

 

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Maple Grove Mouths And Stomatitis

Minneapolis Mouths And Stomatitis

This message from Arbor Lakes Dental in Maple Grove is about mouth sores. The mouth is a bad place for sores Even the smallest irritation in the mouth can cause serious discomfort.

Non-specific irritations in the mouth have a name. They are called stomatitis.

A good general definition for stomatitis is the inflammation of the membranes in the mouth. These usually affect a person’s ability to speak, eat, and even get to sleep at night. If you suffer from mouth sores, you know that stomatitis can really impact your life.

Some common causes of stomatitis can be canker sores, cold sores, gum disease, biting the inside of your mouth or your tongue, burning your mouth, and irritation caused by braces or broken teeth. Many sores in the mouth will generally clear up on their own in less than two weeks.

We can determine if it is caused by a viral or bacterial infection, and also advise you on treating the symptoms of stomatitis with pain relievers and at-home remedies such as salt water rinses.

At Arbor Lakes Dental in Maple Grove, we want our patients to enjoy healthy teeth and gums. Our services include family and restorative dentistry. Call to schedule an appointment today!

Contact Arbor Lakes Dental – Jamie L. Sledd, DDS:

763-494-4443

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

12000 Elm Creek Blvd N Ste 230
Maple Grove, Minnesota
55369

 

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3 Reasons Not To Skip A Dental Checkup

cosmetic dental Maple Grove

Life gets busy. Sometimes it seems impossible to keep up with everything you need to do. At Arbor Lakes Dental in Maple Grove, we understand that. (Life gets busy for us, too!) But we encourage you to think twice before you cancel or postpone a dental checkup because you think it’s less important than the twenty other items on your to-do list.

Twice-yearly dental exams are essential for keeping your smile in great shape!

You might say: “But my teeth feel fine.”

Our answer? Don’t be lulled into a false sense of security. The fact is that no news isn’t necessarily good news. Dental troubles can be progressing without you being aware of it.

1. Your Gums May Be Receding
Gum recession doesn’t happen all at once. Gum tissue can move back almost imperceptibly until teeth and bone are in danger.

2. Decay May Be Lurking
When tooth decay begins, we usually don’t feel it until right away – not until it has passed through the enamel and dentin and hits the nerve. Ouch! By that time, there is a crater in the tooth. Regular cleanings remove plaque before it can do any damage.

3. Prevent Oral Cancer
About 50,000 people will be diagnosed with oral cancer this year. During your checkup we’ll screen for oral cancer. As with all types of cancer, early diagnosis is essential.

After your entire mouth has been examined, we will detail what is necessary moving forward. Whether that’s flossing more often or discussing major fixes, we will make certain that you get all the information you need to ensure your smile is bright and beautiful!

At Arbor Lakes Dental in Maple Grove, we like to see you for a cleaning and checkup twice a year. Our services include family and restorative dentistry. Schedule your next appointment today!

Contact Arbor Lakes Dental – Jamie L. Sledd, DDS:

763-494-4443

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

12000 Elm Creek Blvd N Ste 230
Maple Grove, Minnesota
55369

 

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Into The Thick Of It, The Skinny On Toothpaste

Osseo cosmetic dental and tooth implants

In this blog post from Arbor Lakes Dental in Maple Grove, we’ll answer some of the common questions our patients have about toothpaste.

Why does toothpaste seem gritty?

The gritty aspect of toothpaste is to assist in removing dental plaque and food from the surface of the teeth. Rough brushing becomes unnecessary when the toothpaste abrasives snag the mouth’s lingering bits of food and polish the enamel at the same time.

What’s with the strong minty flavors?

Minty flavorants are used to encourage continued use of the paste and to freshen breath. However, toothpaste is not meant to cure bad breath all by itself.

While unflavored toothpastes exist, the world has also seen such flavors as peanut butter, iced tea, and ginger. To treat bad breath, it is best to prevent periodontal disease and to also brush bacteria from far back on the tongue. Removing the source is important and more effective than covering it up with minty flavorings.

What is Fluoride’s place in a toothpaste?

Fluoride occurs in small amounts in plants, animals, and some natural water sources. It is championed by health-conscious people for preventing tooth decay and controlling gingivitis. Fluoride-containing compounds are added to many toothpastes to add another vital dimension to the oral hygiene regimen for preventing decay.

How are toothpaste and flossing related?

Flossing regularly in conjunction with toothbrushing aids in avoid bacterial growth, tooth decay, and plaque build-up by simply removing chunks of food or substances that could break down the tooth.

Finally, what about the relationship between toothpaste and mouthwash?

The use of mouthwash cannot replace regular brushing and flossing. Mouthwash (or fluoride rinse) simply adds yet another effective layer of defense against bacterial growth in the mouth.

At Arbor Lakes Dental in Maple Grove, the dental health of our patients is always our number one priority. So brush and floss twice a day, and see us for a cleaning and checkup every six months. Our services include family and cosmetic dentistry. Schedule your next appointment today!

Contact Arbor Lakes Dental – Jamie L. Sledd, DDS:

763-494-4443

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

12000 Elm Creek Blvd N Ste 230
Maple Grove, Minnesota
55369

 

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Check Out The Checkup!

At Arbor Lakes Dental in Maple Grove, we want to see each one of our patients for a cleaning and checkup twice a year. Most of the time we try to get you to schedule your next appointment even as you leave the office from your latest one.

There are some very good reasons for seeing us twice a year. Along with daily brushing and flossing, six-month cleanings and checkups are the best way to ensure you have good dental health. That means clean teeth with no cavities, and pink healthy gums.

The Cleaning

Most appointments begin with a cleaning from the hygienist. During the cleaning we’ll scrape any tartar from your teeth. Tartar is hardened plaque, and you can’t get it off with a toothbrush and floss. That’s one of the reasons brushing twice a day is so important: it helps prevent plaque buildup!

Scraping tartar off of your teeth is known as scaling. Once your teeth are scaled, we’ll polish them with a gritty toothpaste. This is pretty harsh stuff, and it does a fabulous job removing any surface stains on your teeth. Sometimes patients wonder if they can get something like it for use at home. The trouble with that is that it’s just too abrasive to use every day.

After scaling and brushing, the last step is flossing. Then, it’s the dentist’s turn.

The Checkup

During the checkup we look for any new cavities that may have appeared since your last visit. We might take X-rays, although this is not done at every visit. We’ll examine your gums, too, for any signs of gum disease.

Finally, we’ll look at your tongue, throat, face and and head, and your neck. We’re checking for swelling or redness, or any signs of cancer.

And that, in a nutshell, is how your visit to the dentist goes. At Arbor Lakes Dental in Maple Grove our services include family and restorative dentistry. Schedule your next checkup with us today!

Contact Arbor Lakes Dental – Jamie L. Sledd, DDS:

763-494-4443

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

12000 Elm Creek Blvd N Ste 230
Maple Grove, Minnesota
55369

 

Dental Floss: Which Type is Best?

Along with brushing, flossing is the most important thing you can do for healthy teeth and gums. There’s a varity of floss types to choose from. Which one is best for you? It depends. At Arbor Lakes Dental in Maple Grove, we’re using this space to summarize what’s available, and what might influence your choice of dental floss.

The reason that flossing is so important is that it removes plaque and food debris from between your teeth, where your toothbrush can’t reach. Left on the teeth, plaque hardens into floss and contributes to tooth decay. The Academy of General Dentistry goes so far as to call flossing the most important thing you can do to fight plaque.

What Kind Is Best?

When it comes to what dental floss to use, there is a lot to choose from. Flavored or unflavored? Waxed or unwaxed? Wide or thin?

No single type of floss is right for everyone. You might even benefit from having more than one kind in your medicine chest. With a little trial and error, you can narrow down your choices to find what works best for you.

A recent study shows there really isn’t much difference, if any, in the effectiveness of the different types of dental floss. Here are some things to consider:

  • Waxed floss fits more easily into tight spaces
  • Unwaxed floss tends to squeak against clean teeth, an indicator that plaque is gone
  • Wider dental tape may work better in gaps between teeth, and on bridgework

One word of caution: we recommend traditional string floss that you can pull out in a long strand, as opposed to a flossing pick. Those little picks are popular, but they only have a tight strand of less than an inch of floss. That makes it all but impossible to wrap any floss around your teeth – and flossing is far more effective when you do that. The little picks are fine for a purse or backpack, when you’re on the go. Just be sure to use regular floss as part of your dental hygiene routine before bedtime.

Whatever your preference may be, the important thing is to floss at least once each day.

At Arbor Lakes Dental in Maple Grove, we also like to see you for a checkup every six months. Our services include family and cosmetic dentistry. Schedule your next appointment today!

Contact Arbor Lakes Dental – Jamie L. Sledd, DDS:

763-494-4443

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

12000 Elm Creek Blvd N Ste 230
Maple Grove, Minnesota
55369

 

Why White Fillings?

Like any other dental practice, we fill a lot of cavities at Arbor Lakes Dental in Maple Grove. Did you know that more than ninety percent of American adults have had cavities at some point? That’s a lot of drilling and filling.

We use white fillings, also called composite fillings, and there are some good reasons for that. For one thing, they blend almost seamlessly with your teeth, so that no one is going to know they’re there, even when you burst out laughing.

Another good reason is that more and more people are concerned about the safety of old-style silver fillings. Silver fillings have been used in dentistry for more than a century, and are extremely durable. And make no mistake, they still have the approval of the American Dental Association and the World Health Organization.

But silver fillings contain tiny amounts of mercury, which is a known toxin. While the jury may still be out about whether they should be used, we use white fillings because we’d rather be safe than sorry.

Many of our patients also say they don’t want to take any chances, and who can blame them? White fillings are durable and resistant to fracturing. That means they are strong enough to withstand all the pressure put on them from constant chewing. They are especially good for filling small to mid-sized cavities.

Of course, it’s best if you don’t need any cavities at all. That may not be very realistic in the long run. But you can minimize your chances of tooth decay by brushing your teeth twice a day, and flossing at least once. It’s also essential that you see us at name of practice twice a year for a cleaning and checkup. If we find a cavity we’ll use white fillings. We also offer cosmetic dentistry. Make an appointment today!

Contact Arbor Lakes Dental – Jamie L. Sledd, DDS:

763-494-4443

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

12000 Elm Creek Blvd N Ste 230
Maple Grove, Minnesota
55369

 

Arbor Lakes Dental Wants You To Be Healthy And Happy

Arbor Lakes Dental - Jamie L. Sledd, DDS in Maple Grove Cares For TeethAt Arbor Lakes Dental in Maple Grove we are dedicated to the dental health of each of our patients. After all, you use your teeth to tear, scrape, and chew food, as well as to form words with your tongue.

Healthy teeth and gums are, in fact, a critical component of complete physical and mental health. An unhealthy smile can erode confidence, cause embarrasment, and make eating and speaking difficult. The team of dental professonals at Arbor Lakes Dental wants to help keep your mouth and teeth healthy so that they don’t adversely affect your life in any way.

We humans have two sets of teeth in our lifetime. The first set are your ‘primary teeth’, which many people call ‘baby teeth’. Baby teeth typically start to come in at about 6 months old. An average mouth has a total of 20 primary teeth by about age 5.

Your primary teeth will eventually fall out and new teeth known as ‘permanent teeth’ will grow in. Permanent teeth typically begin to come in around age 6, but every person is unique and it could be a little earlier or later. By about age 13 an average healthy mouth should have 28 of the total 32 permanent teeth. The last four permanent teeth may or may not come, but typically come in between the ages of 17 and 21 if they do. Because of the late age that these last teeth come in they are commonly called ‘wisdom teeth’.

No matter your age, caring for all of your teeth is important for dental health. At Arbor Lakes Dental in Maple Grove, it is our privilege to help you. Our services include family and cosmetic dentistry. Schedule your next checkup with us today.

Contact Arbor Lakes Dental – Jamie L. Sledd, DDS:

763-494-4443

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

12000 Elm Creek Blvd N Ste 230
Maple Grove, Minnesota
55369

 

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Three Great Reasons to Floss Your Teeth

Three Great Reasons to Floss Your Teeth by Arbor Lakes Dental - Jamie L. Sledd, DDS

Flossing can be a chore. It comes after brushing your teeth in things a lot of us intentionally forget to do. But it’s an essential part of any dental health regimen, which is why those of us at Arbor Lakes Dental in Maple Grove are constantly reminding our patients to brush and floss … brush and floss!

Here are three really good reasons why you should never overlook flossing your teeth:

1. Bad Breath

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

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

It makes sense, then, that bad breath would be one of the things you might worry about.

Flossing is a great way to help you avoid bad breath.

Flossing your teeth helps reduce plaque buildup between your teeth. It also helps flush out pockets of bacteria. Together, plaque and bacteria can create bad breath.

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

2. Cavities

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

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

3. Tooth Decay

Tooth decay is the softening of your tooth enamel by acids. Acids are created by bacteria when they feast on leftover carbohydrates in your teeth.

Flossing can help you in two ways. First, you will remove leftover food particles so bacteria have less to work with. Food between your teeth can be microscopic, and that’s why it isn’t good enough to do a quick tongue slide to check your teeth. The particles are too small to see or feel.

Second, flossing will help remove the bacteria from between your teeth, so there aren’t enough left to create destructive acids.

To maintain excellent dental health, the team at Arbor Lakes Dental in Maple Grove recommends flossing every time you brush your teeth. We also recommend seeing us for a cleaning and checkup every six months. Our services include family and cosmetic dentistry. Schedule your next appointment with us today!

Contact Arbor Lakes Dental – Jamie L. Sledd, DDS:

763-494-4443

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

12000 Elm Creek Blvd N Ste 230
Maple Grove, Minnesota
55369

 

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