February 16th, 2018
IS A KISS RISKY WITH BRACES? You’ll have to answer that question on your own! Once in a while we’ll hear a story about braces getting stuck when two people with braces were smooching. But there’s a more-often-talked-about concern about kissing that our practice would like to briefly address below.
Bacteria Can Lead To Increased Plaque Which Can Lead To Tooth Decay
We know it’s not pleasant to think about, but it’s true — your mouth is full of bacteria. Some of it is good and some of it isn’t. For the most part, your body (and your mouth, specifically) does a pretty good job of keeping bacteria, germs, and viruses that make their way into your mouth in check. But increased bacteria can also lead to increased plaque. Maintaining great oral hygiene habits is the very best way you can help your mouth do its job.
Kissing (with or without braces) Introduces Your Mouth To Someone Else’s Bacteria And Viruses
Now there’s no need to make this a huge cause for worry. Our team just wants to be sure that you know about the most common viruses and diseases that you could be sharing with a smooch:
- Cold Sores. Cold sores are a manifestation of a herpes virus. Even when there are no signs, it can be contagious.
- Colds And Flus. Lots of viruses are included under the blanket “common cold” term. Colds happen, but you can decrease the spread by avoiding kissing while you’re sick.
- Mononucleosis. Also known as mono, glandular fever, or the kissing disease, this is caused by a viral infection that is easily spread by saliva and can knock you out for weeks.
Yes, There Are Lots Of Kissing Positives Too
We’re not condemning kissing! Think about the benefits! Kissing increases saliva flow, which is great for your teeth and overall oral health. And of course, an affectionate peck can make you happier and strengthen relationships, which leads to better overall health and wellbeing. So don’t put the brakes on a great relationship just because you’re worried about germs! Just be smart, make sure that you maintain great oral hygiene, and that you always know who’s on the other end of that kiss.
Any Questions About All This?
We love answering your questions about ANY orthodontic or oral-health related matter. It gives us a chance to know you better. Give us a call, leave a comment below, or send us a direct message on our Facebook page. We’re always happy to discuss things with you!
Give us a call at Gorczyca Orthodontics in Antioch, California (925) 757-9000.
Thanks again for the trust you place in us! We value your friendship!
January 30th, 2018
DURING YOUR ORTHODONTIC TREATMENT, you probably don’t think very often about your spit (and frankly, we’d be a little worried about you if you did). And yes, both baby drool and the occasional drooling you may experience from having braces are a nuisance!
But did you know that saliva is a critical component for healthy teeth and great oral health — regardless of your age? Here at our practice, we’re not only concerned with your orthodontic treatment, but also with your teeth and complete oral health. We thought you may find it interesting to learn how saliva helps keep your mouth protected and healthy, even when your teeth are partially covered by braces.
Four Reasons Your Saliva Is Awesome
- Your saliva slowly and continually builds your teeth into tiny fortresses. It carries minerals like calcium and phosphate ions which reinforce your enamel.
- Saliva is an important part of your immune system. It contains immunoproteins that police your mouth, fighting bacteria and coating teeth in a protective layer.
- It’s a lubricant. Thanks to saliva, your mouth and tongue are flexible. Talking and eating would be seriously difficult without it.
- Saliva keeps your mouth clean. It washes away food particles and rebalances the pH level in your mouth every time you eat.
Xerostomia (a.k.a. Dry Mouth) Can Be A Problem
Now that you understand how much your saliva does for you, you probably see what a problem it could be if it weren’t there. When your body isn’t producing enough saliva, it’s called dry mouth, or xerostomia (pronounced “zeer-uh-stoh-mee-uh”). It’s often caused by common medications like antihistamines or antidepressants. It can also be a side effect of dehydration or diseases like Parkinson’s and cystic fibrosis. Sometimes it’s simply a result of aging.
Here Are A Few Suggestions That May Help You
If you’re having trouble with xerostomia, ask us about it! We’ll be sure it’s not part of a bigger problem. In addition to the simple suggestions below, there may be other things our team can suggest that will help:
- Rinse your mouth regularly with water.
- Chew ortho-approved sugarless gum or suck on a sugarless candy to help stimulate saliva flow.
- Avoid alcohol and tobacco, which can both be dry mouth contributing factors.
Remember that if you ever have questions, you can call us or send us a direct message on our Facebook page. Visit us at Gorczyca Orthodontics for a free orthodontic evaluation. Visit our website at www.clubbraces.com and call us at 925-757-9000 to schedule your appointment.
Your smile is our inspiration.