The Spirit Dental Blog | Stay In The Know

Dental Implants: Do or Don't?

 image of dental implant hardware on blue background

When confronted with the option of getting a dental implant, you might wonder if it’s worth going through with this procedure. After all, getting an implant will take time, and it could be expensive if you don’t have the right insurance plan in place.

To help you make the right choice, we’ve compiled some information on the benefits, as well as the risks, that are associated with dental implants.

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What to Know Before Your First Root Canal

root canal

So your dentist has uttered that terrible phrase that you never want to hear: “You need a root canal.” And if this is your first root canal ever, you probably have a ton of questions running through your mind, combined with a lot of fear regarding the pain that you might have to endure. Well, we’re here to put your mind at ease.

Below are a few of the things that you should know prior to getting your first root canal. Hopefully this information will help you prepare for this common dental procedure so it won’t be so scary after all.

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5 Natural Remedies for Toothaches

natural remedies

A toothache is a sign that something is wrong, so seeing your dentist is necessary. But there are some natural remedies that you can try until your appointment. Below are five at-home tricks that might bring you some much-needed relief.

Apply Some Clove Oil to the Affected Area

Okay, we know that this sounds pretty weird, but clove oil might be able to numb the pain of your toothache. That’s because the main chemical compound that is found in cloves is eugenol, which is a natural anesthetic that numbs nerves. And, believe it or not, clove oil might be just as effective as the numbing ingredient known as benzocaine, which is found in toothache gels sold over-the-counter. Who knew, right?

You can find clove oil at a health food store, and all you need is just a few drops. To use this oil, soak a cotton ball with it and gently dab the oil against the tooth that is aching. Use this oil carefully, though, as it might make the pain worse if it ends up on a sensitive area of your gums or on your tongue. You could also dilute it with a bit of olive oil to reduce its intensity, if necessary.

Rinse Your Mouth with Salt Water

You’ve heard of gargling with salt water when you have a sore throat, but did you know that you can also rinse your mouth with a bit of salt water to get some pain relief when you have a toothache? It’s true! This homemade mouthwash could help clear away any debris irritating your teeth and gums. Plus, by drawing out excess fluid from the gums, it might also reduce any swelling that you might be experiencing.

Use about 8 ounces of warm water and about ½ teaspoon of salt to thoroughly rinse the mouth for roughly 30 seconds before spitting it out. You can do this as often as you need to throughout the day.

Use Some Tea for Your Teeth

If you already like peppermint tea, this solution will be super easy for you. Thanks to its slight numbing ability, peppermint tea might be able to help soothe your aching tooth. Or you could go with black tea instead because there are astringent tannins within it, and they might help to reduce any pain that is the result of swelling within the mouth.

To make your peppermint tea, you can place 1 teaspoon of dried peppermint leaves in a cup of boiling water. Allow the leaves to steep for roughly 20 minutes. Once the tea is cool, you can rinse your mouth with it and then either swallow it or spit it out. If you are planning on using black tea, you can simply apply a wet, warm tea bag against your tooth instead.

Place a Cold Compress on Your Cheek

Applying a cold compress to your cheek might help alleviate the swelling and pain within superficial nerves. If you don’t have a reusable cold compress that you can purchase at your local pharmacy, you can instead wrap some ice around a towel or put some ice into a plastic bag and then wrap a cloth around it.

All you have to do is place the cold compress on the cheek area over your toothache. You definitely don’t want to apply it directly to your teeth (ouch!). Leave the compress on for a few minutes at a time, such as for about 15 minutes.

Swish Some Hydrogen Peroxide in Your Mouth

Rinsing your mouth with a 3% hydrogen peroxide solution might help to reduce your discomfort, as well as eliminate bacteria. Try this remedy if you also have a foul taste in your mouth or a fever that accompanies your toothache, as those symptoms indicate that there is likely an infection.    

Be careful, as you don’t want to swallow the hydrogen peroxide. Instead, dilute it with some water, swish it around in your mouth, and spit it out. Then clean your mouth by rinsing it a few times with water.

Time to See Your Dentist!

Just remember that these natural home remedies might give you some short-term pain relief, but your dentist will be able to get to the root of the problem and provide you with the appropriate treatment to make you all better.

To prevent your condition from worsening, book your appointment as soon as you start feeling a toothache (with a Spirit dental plan, there aren’t any waiting periods). Experts also recommend that you keep seeing your dentist regularly for checkups to catch signs of cavities or gum disease as soon as possible.

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Habits That Can Wreck Your Teeth

habits

It’s easy to get lazy when it comes to following an at-home dental hygiene routine, or when it comes to avoiding foods and drinks that you know are bad for your teeth and gums. But, over time, these tendencies could ruin your smile.   

Which habits are most liable to put your oral health at risk?

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Does My Emotional Health Affect My Dental Health?

 emotional health

We all know that emotional stress can wreak havoc on your body and undo all of the hard work that you’ve put into being strong and healthy. But does the mind-body connection extend to your teeth? Could the stress of your deadlines, relationships, and other daily struggles be causing your oral health problems? The answer is yes!

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Fighting Bad Breath: The Ins and Outs

fighting bad breath

Few things are more embarrassing than having bad breath. But combating those offensive odors in your mouth can be more of a challenge than you first anticipate. So how can you be sure your breath will always smell fresh and clean, and won’t cause people to take a step back when they’re talking to you? Check out the easy bad breath fighting tips below to get started.

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Spring Into Action: Dental Care 101

spring into action

Oral hygiene doesn’t have to be complicated. Simple steps that can be taken on a daily basis can help you maintain fresh breath, while also reducing your odds of developing cavities and gum disease.

Want to be absolutely sure that you’re covering all of your bases when it comes to your dental care routine? We’ve outlined the basics below to make taking care of your mouth a breeze.

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What Toothpaste Should I Use?

what toothpaste

Walk down the aisle of your local supermarket or drugstore and you’ll find an array of toothpaste options. Not only are there so many brands to choose from, but each brand also has several formulations to meet your dental health needs. There’s whitening toothpaste, fluoride and non-fluoride products, and toothpaste for sensitive teeth and gums, as a few examples.

But which toothpaste should you be using? After all, having so many choices can make things even more confusing, so we’ve compiled some information below to help you make the right decision.

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How to Combat Bruxism: Teeth Grinding

Bruxism1

Bruxism, which is the grinding and clenching of teeth, is a common condition. Ignoring it and failing to combat it could result in damaged enamel, broken teeth, malocclusion, tooth loss, and temporomandibular joint disorder.

Thankfully, there are several ways that you can stop grinding your teeth, and some of them are listed below so you can tackle this problem before it causes severe damage.  

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Comparing the Cost of Implants to Fixed Bridgework

Bridgework

Losing a tooth in an accident or to decay can definitely be traumatizing. Thankfully, your dentist has the tools necessary to restore your smile, as well as prevent other oral problems that could result from missing teeth. Whether you’ve lost just a single tooth or several teeth, you can choose to have dental implants set in place or you can go for fixed bridgework.

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Causes of “Dry Mouth” and How to Relieve It

Dry Mouth

The fancy word for “dry mouth” is xerostomia, and this is a condition that’s characterized by a lack of saliva throughout the mouth. Basically, the salivary glands stop producing the normal amount of saliva, leaving the mouth dry and uncomfortable.

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Best and Worst Foods for Your Teeth

Best and Worst Foods for Your Teeth

Good oral hygiene doesn’t end with your daily brushing routine. What you eat every day can have an impact on the strength of your teeth, as well as the color of your chompers.

So which foods have been deemed the best, and which ones are considered the worst, for tooth health? Take a look at the list below for some helpful pointers.

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Kids First Dentist Visit: Dos and Don'ts

Kids Dental Insurance

Going to the dentist can be scary even for adults. So when it’s time to bring your child to their first dental appointment, use the following tips to make the experience as anxiety-free as possible.

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$3,500 Maximum Explained

3500 max explained

Let’s face it: medical insurance, including dental insurance, can be really confusing. For example, when shopping around for the right plan, you’ll come across a slew of details, including what’s known as a maximum amount of coverage. But what is a maximum amount, and how does it affect your coverage?

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How to Avoid Teeth Stains

avoid teeth stains

Are you dreaming of a white smile? Well, it all starts with knowing what causes your teeth to become stained, and then discovering what you can do to remove stains that have already taken hold.

Don’t worry, it’s easier than you think to maintain a brilliant smile while still indulging in the foods and drinks that you love. We’ve outlined a few simple steps that you can take right away.

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When Is the Right Time to Replace Fillings?

replace fillings

After your dentist applies a filling to one of your teeth in order to restore its strength and preserve the tooth, you might think that the work is over. But the truth is that the filling won’t last indefinitely. Eventually, the fillings in your teeth will need to be replaced. The question that most patients ask is: when is the right time to replace dental fillings?

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Mouthwash - Is It a Must?

mouthwash 775

Rinsing with some minty mouthwash can be a refreshing way to conclude your daily oral hygiene routine at home.

But is mouthwash really necessary? Is it doing anything to promote the health of your teeth and gums?

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How Allergies Can Affect Your Dental Health

how allergies can affect

Allergy season brings with it sinus problems, sneezing, itchy, watery eyes, and other symptoms that make you feel miserable. But did you know that allergies could affect your teeth?

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Spring Cleaning … For Your Mouth

spring cleaning

Spring is the perfect season to refresh your routine and declutter your life. But beyond cleaning your home, you can also focus on some spring cleaning for your mouth.

As the weather warms and the days get longer, incorporate the following tips into your daily life so you can have a sparkling smile by the time summer rolls around.

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How to Prevent Cavities

Cavities

Cavities: the word strikes fear in all who hear it. Put simply, when your teeth are frequently exposed to acid, sugars, starches, and bacteria, they can become permanently damaged with cavities. These tiny holes could also be the result of improper oral hygiene, and they can only be treated by your dentist. Left untreated, the holes will grow bigger and begin decaying deeper layers of your teeth, causing more problems, like a toothache, infection, and tooth loss.

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