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Should My Child Wear a Mouthguard to Play Sports?

It is important for children to wear a mouthguard when they are playing sports. A good mouthguard can protect your child’s mouth from serious injury during sports. It is important to make sure that you are buying the right mouthguard for them to prevent broken teeth or damage to the mouth.

Your child needs a mouth protector just like they need their other safety equipment. It can protect them from a dental emergency. While it’s always best to consult your Saginaw, MI dentist for advice on what mouthguards are best, it still pays to know the differences between the three types of mouthguards available.

Custom-Fit Mouthguards

Custom-fit mouthguards are made for your child and designed to fit their mouths. A dental professional will make an imprint of your child’s teeth and mouth. It will then be used to make the well-fitted mouthguard. They are more expensive than other types of mouthguards. The advantage of this type is that they almost always offer more protection since they fit better. Dr. Jennifer Schau and her Saginaw, MI dental team can fit your child with a mouthguard that provides the best possible protection.

Stock Mouthguards

Stock mouthguards come pre-formed and ready to use. They are relatively inexpensive, but since they aren’t customized to fit your child, they might not fit properly or provide as much protection as a custom-fitted mouthguard.

Boil-and-Bite Mouthguards

Boil-and-bite mouthguards can be considered the middle ground between custom-fit mouthguards and stock mouthguards. They can be purchased at most sporting goods stores, and they can adapt to your child’s mouth after they are softened in boiling water.

Want more information on mouthguards?

If your child wears braces or other dental equipment talk to the dentist about the type of mouthguard they should wear. For more information about mouthguards or to find the mouthguard that is best for your child, contact Dr. Jennifer Schau today. Dr. Schau and the team will be happy to answer any questions that you might have.

What to do about a Cracked Tooth

dental examA cracked tooth may be a serious problem, but it’s one that is easy to overlook. You might be able to see a large crack, but not always. Most cracks are invisible to the naked eye, and some won’t even show up on an x-ray. And yet, they can lead to some serious issues if they aren’t repaired by your Saginaw, MI dentist. 

Identifying a Cracked Tooth

The best way to know if you have a cracked tooth is to make an appointment with Dr. Jennifer Schau and her Saginaw, MI dental team. If you have localized pain in one part of your mouth that flares when you bite down on something or expose your teeth to something very hot or very cold, you might have a tooth that needs to be repaired. This can be done with bonding, a crown, or a root canal if the damage has gotten particularly severe. 

What Causes a Tooth to Crack?

There are a number of things that can cause a cracked tooth. Forceful trauma to the head or mouth can crack a tooth. You can also accidentally break, chip, or crack a tooth by biting down on a hard piece of candy, a nut, or a piece of ice. If you find yourself grinding your teeth in your sleep, or when you are stressed out, you may be more susceptible to having a cracked tooth.  In any case, you should never wait to have a cracked tooth repaired. Contact Dr. Jennifer Schau to set up an appointment as soon as you suspect that you have a problem.

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If you have a painful tooth, don’t wait until it gets any worse. Call us today and schedule an exam. Catching problems early is essential for making sure they don’t cause secondary, more complicated problems.

The Link Between Obesity and Oral Health

Obesity and Oral Health 

Obesity rates around the globe are getting worse. Many governmental agencies are trying to find ways to reduce the rates and help people live healthier lives. But recently, studies have revealed a connection between obesity and oral health. You might not think there’s a connection between these two conditions, but scientists are convinced there is a strong link. Your Saginaw, MI dentist, Dr. Jennifer Schau, is aware of the statistics which make a strong connection between people having a high body mass index above 30, and those who have an increased incidence of periodontal disease and other oral health issues.

The Connecting link 

The connection between these two conditions appears to be the diet. Studies have been conducted which show that almost all obese people have a high level of bacteria in their mouths. This bacterium is the same type most closely associated with periodontal disease. This particular type of bacteria come from consuming refined carbohydrates and sugary foods. These are the same type of foods which lead to obesity and are also determined to be bad for oral health. Refined carbohydrates and sugars can help promote cavities and gum disease.  

This being the case, your Saginaw, MI dental team recommends that anyone who is significantly overweight adopt a lifestyle change with respect to their diet. By including more of the healthy foods which can help to stave off oral health issues, and also help to manage weight, a person should automatically reduce their intake of carbs, fats, and sugars. Dr. Schau and team are happy to help patients maintain better oral health by adopting healthier eating habits.

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Please contact our offices with your questions and concerns about how diet affects your oral health. We are glad to help. Schedule an appointment today to discuss your oral health with a professional.

 

What is Gingivitis?

Gingivitis is a very common form of periodontal disease which generally occurs after plaque builds up around the teeth and is not removed by brushing. During your regular visit with the Saginaw, MI dental team, Dr. Jennifer Schau can spot the symptoms and identify gingivitis, so you can take steps to correct the situation. 

Can gingivitis be prevented?

The best defense against gingivitis is good brushing and flossing, so plaque doesn’t have a chance to accumulate. If it is allowed to build up and is not removed, it can harden into a substance called tartar, and this can only be removed by Dr. Schau and her dental team. 

What are the symptoms?

When gingivitis is mild, you can identify the symptoms easily. Seeing a dentist right away is key to successful treatment. Some of the symptoms include red or swollen gums, sensitivity around the gums, or bleeding which occurs near sensitive gum tissue. Bleeding is usually noticed after brushing or flossing. 

Getting a Diagnosis

When you come in for a dental check-up, your Saginaw, MI dentist will check for signs of gingivitis or periodontitis. If the dentist discovers any signs, she will remove the tartar, and you will be advised that additional brushing and flossing will be necessary to manage any further outbreaks of gingivitis. With good at-home oral hygiene, your gums will recover, and symptoms will fade away. When diagnosed early, it’s easily treatable. However, waiting can lead to more serious conditions like the break down of gum tissue.  This can eventually lead to other complications like the loss of one or more teeth. 

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Do you think you have the symptoms of gingivitis? Please contact us to schedule a dental exam. We are happy to answer any questions or concerns you have about your dental health.

 

 

Drinking Water and Your Oral Health

When you think about taking care of your body, chances are drinking enough water is high on your list. But did you know that drinking water helps your dental health, too? That’s especially true if your water is fluoridated. Your Saginaw, MI dentist, Dr. Schau, and team want to help you keep your mouth healthy, and here’s how water can help you do it.

Water and Your Body

The body is made up of about 60% water. Proper hydration ensures the body can distribute key nutrients throughout the body, rid itself of waste, keeps muscles moving, and gives the skin a nice glow. It provides essential nutrients and minerals to help balance out the electrolytes in the body. You will have more energy and clearer thoughts when you consume enough water.

How Water Benefits Oral Health

Fluoridated water is a great way to help fight cavities. Not only does fluoride strengthen your teeth, but the water washes away bacteria and food particles that could be on your teeth after eating. It also provides hydration for your mouth so your saliva works properly to protect your teeth. When saliva works like it is supposed to it helps protect the teeth from cavities. If you develop dry mouth, your saliva doesn’t do it’s part so your teeth are unprotected. Drinking enough water is beneficial for preventing dry mouth and helping saliva protect your teeth. When you drink water, you’re helping your body work to keep your smile healthy and beautiful, even between dental appointments.

Contact Dr. Jennifer Schau

When it’s time to get a check-up or you want to know more about improving dental health between appointments, be sure to call your Saginaw, MI dental team to make an appointment with Dr. Jennifer Schau. Contact the dental office today to schedule your exam or find answers to your questions about water and your oral health.

Do You Brush Your Tongue?

Most people learn from a young age that it’s important to brush your teeth twice a day and floss at least once daily. This is necessary to take good care of your mouth. But did you know that if you don’t take care of your tongue, you’re not doing everything you should for your oral health?

Why Brushing Your Tongue is Important

Your tongue is prime for lots of bacteria to grow in your mouth. If you don’t do anything, the bacteria will continue to grow and cause problems beyond bad breath. In fact, if you don’t brush your tongue, you could get more cavities, even if you’re brushing your teeth and flossing regularly. Brushing your tongue is especially important if you have dry mouth, have tooth decay or periodontal disease, or have certain health problems like diabetes or kidney disease. Those things can also contribute to bad breath, so it’s important to do what you can to counteract it.

How do you brush your tongue?

The best way to brush your tongue is to include it every time you brush your teeth. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush to brush your tongue in side-to-side motions all along the surface. Then, rinse well with water. Be careful not to brush too hard so you don’t damage the surface of your tongue. If you use a tongue scraper, make sure you follow the instructions carefully so you don’t damage the skin on your tongue. If you have questions about brushing your tongue, you should reach out to Dr. Shau and the team at your Saginaw, MI dentist office.

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If you’re battling bad breath even with proper oral health care at home, call your Saginaw, MI dental team to make an appointment with Dr. Jennifer Shau. We would be happy to help you improve your oral health!

Swollen Roof of the Mouth: When to See Your Dentist

Each of us has experienced a sore or swollen roof of the mouth at one time or another in our lives. This condition normally goes away after a few days and doesn’t usually require any type of dental treatment. For most people, having a swollen, and even painful palate is not a serious condition. However, it’s worth noting that in very rare circumstances a swollen roof of the mouth is indicative of a serious underlying condition such as oral cancer or an infection. If you notice any major changes to your mouth, teeth, or gums it’s important to schedule a visit to your dental professional.

Common Causes and When to See the Dentist

However, it’s important to know when the condition does warrant a visit to your Saginaw, MI dentist. You should have your oral health evaluated by the Saginaw, MI dental team which is headed by Dr. Jennifer Schau if:

  • The inflammation in the roof of the mouth is accompanied by intense pain while chewing and swallowing
  • It is as a result of severe burns caused by eating foods while they are too hot
  • You’ve suffered injury from retainers, dentures, braces, or other dental appliances that no longer fit
  • You’ve suffered another form of trauma to the mouth
  • Part of the palate is extremely discolored
  • The pain or discomfort does not go away after 5 to 7 days

Dental Care for Swollen Roof of the Mouth

Dr. Schau and team pride themselves in creating a relationship with their clients that makes them feel cared for and comfortable. They will carefully examine your mouth and establish the root cause of an inflamed roof of the mouth and recommend an effective treatment.

See Your Dentist If You Have Oral Thrush

Oral thrush is an infection caused by an overgrowth of yeast in the mouth and throat. It’s most common in those who have a compromised immune system such as those who have AIDS or are undergoing chemotherapy. This is because a compromised immune system leaves you more vulnerable to infection. You can also develop oral thrush if you take inhaled steroids to control asthma or if you take an oral steroid. These medications can throw off the natural balance of yeast in your mouth and cause an overgrowth. This is why it’s always best to rinse your mouth out after using a steroid inhaler.

Seeing a Dentist

If you are concerned with oral thrush, Dr. Jennifer Schau and her Saginaw, MI dental team will be glad to help you. Dr. Schau and her team have several years of experience treating oral and dental issues of all kinds, and they will be able to answer any questions for anybody in need of a Saginaw, MI dentist.

Pneumonia and Oral Health: Is There a Link?

Did you know that there’s a link between poor oral health and pneumonia? Taking proper care of your teeth and gums and going to the dentist twice a year can do more than just prevent cavities and keep your teeth bright: it can also impact other areas of your health. This can be beneficial when it comes to preventing pneumonia because mouth bacteria may aid in the development of pneumonia when that bacteria is out of control. This is one of the reasons why Dr. Jennifer Schau and your Saginaw, MI dental team educate patients on the holistic health benefits of practicing good oral hygiene.

The Problem and the Solution

Brushing and flossing go a long way when it comes to minimizing the harmful bacteria that can lead to health issues like pneumonia. While there are both good and bad bacteria in your mouth, the bad bacteria becomes a problem only when it grows disproportionately as a result of poor oral hygiene. Simply brushing your teeth can diminishing bad bacteria, which may be extremely beneficial when it comes to preventing bacterial pneumonia. Practicing good oral hygiene and seeing your dentist twice a year is all part of good oral hygiene. These practices go a long way towards decreasing the growth of bad bacteria and decreasing your chances of getting pneumonia.

Protect your health and wellness by practicing good oral hygiene. It may decrease your chances of getting pneumonia and keep your teeth and gums happy and healthy as well. Dr. Schau and team want to see patients reap the positive rewards of practicing good oral health which leads to overall health and wellness.

Get in the Know: Defending Against Cavities

Virtually all American adults between the ages of 20 and 64 have experienced one or more cavities in their lifetimes, and that makes it very important that everything possible should be done to prevent them. Dr. Jennifer Schau, offers the following information about cavities.

What are cavities?

Whenever you fail to remove food particles which are normally trapped between your teeth after eating, bacteria in your mouth help to break down those food particles, creating acids which combine with other materials to form plaque. If this plaque remains on your teeth for as little as 20 minutes, the acids it contains can begin eating away at your tooth enamel to form a hole, or a cavity.

Defending against cavities

Dr. Schau and team recommend that you take steps to remove these food particles after eating, by brushing, flossing, and rinsing your mouth out. Your Saginaw, MI dental team also encourages you come by once every six months, so that plaque can be removed and early signs of cavities can be caught before they develop into problems.

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