Sinister Effects of Smoking on Your Tonsils

Tobacco use is life-threatening. This is definitely not news. You’ve probably encountered countless cases of irreversible lung damage, cardiovascular diseases and various types of cancers in organs such as bladder, cervix, colon and rectum, larynx, liver, esophagus, kidney and ureter, pancreas, larynx, stomach, trachea, and bronchus. In fact, the harmful effects of smoking are so multi-faceted it’ll take us quite some time to discuss them all. But the point has been made—one cheap stick has expensive consequences.

Among the risks of massive tobacco abuse lie the detriments of nicotine to your tonsils. Though not as well-known compared to respiratory diseases, smoking has equally adverse effects to the first barriers of the oral cavity.

Your tonsils work round-the-clock. These lymphoid tissues are located at the side of your throat, the back of your tongue while the adenoids are located found high up your throat, behind the nose. Tonsils help prevent germs and other microbes from entering the body through your oral cavity and nose. They also contain an abundant number of white blood cells responsible for killing bacteria.

What’s inside the stick?

Cigarettes contain around 7,000 chemicals—the majority of which are highly poisonous while over 60 are known to be carcinogenic. Among these deadly substances is the infamous nicotine, a colorless yet highly noxious compound responsible for smoking’s highly addictive properties. Take a look at this long yet partial list of what goes inside a small stick of cigarette:

  • Toluene – used as an industrial solvent
  • Carbon Monoxide – interferes with blood vessels
  • Arsenic – commonly found inside insecticides
  • Ammonia – known for its use in cleaning products and pesticides
  • Hexamine – triggers asthma attacks, coughing and chest tightness
  • Methane – fatal gas that hampers breathing
  • Methanol – used as rocket fuel
  • Butane – prolonged butane exposure affects the cardiovascular and central nervous system
  • Hydrogen Cyanide – highly poisonous and volatile compound

The first victims

Where does one puff the cigarette smoke? You guessed it right. Of course, smokers use their mouths to satisfy their cravings fully. And as one of the initial barriers of the body and oral cavity, your tonsils are the first ones to take a beating. Smoking inhibits normal salivary flow which leaves you with a dry mouth. In turn, the lack of saliva encourages bacterial growth.

Tobacco also decreases the mucosal immunity responsible for regulating inflammatory cells. As well, the harmful chemicals present inside one cigarette stick profoundly affect the oral microflora, encouraging the presence of bacteria putting your gum and dental health in jeopardy. Studies made in 2010 to 2011 already concluded how smoking aggravates the tonsils. Cases of abscess-filled tonsils and recurring tonsillitis are reported along with risks of post-tonsillectomy bleeding. To add fuel to the fire, your smoking also weakens your immune system making you susceptible to infections.

Dental and gum health

Before bacteria hijack your tonsils, they first take refuge in your swollen gums and plaque-filled teeth. Smoking reduces the blood flow in your mouth while hampering the production of saliva. When this happens, your oral cavity becomes a breeding ground of microorganisms, most of which are detrimental for your teeth and gums. Cuts, ulcers, and scratches take longer to recover. This is also why recovery from dental procedures takes longer compared to non-smokers.

In a more worrying note, smoking leads to inflamed gums and the loss of bone and tissue surrounding your teeth. When this happens, your teeth eventually loosen and become more prone to tooth decay. Tooth extractions might be needed to prevent complications.

Before picking up your next stick, think about your hardworking tonsils. They might be equipped in handling bacteria and germs, but they don’t stand a chance against toxic and lethal chemicals present in tobacco. 

If you’d like to schedule an appointment or ask a question with us at Airdrie Springs Dental, please click here or call 587 317 4161

Dental X-Rays; What You Should Know Before Visiting Your Dentist

Your trip to the dentist should include regularly scheduled dental x-rays. An x-ray is an imaging test that dentists use to get a clear image of your teeth and jaw to be able to plan what course of treatment to follow. This may mean filling cavities, braces or just a regular pat on the back for good oral hygiene.

When having x-rays, various parts of your body absorb radiation at a different rate. The calcium in your bones draws the most amount of radiation. As a result, your bones look white after the imaging. Fat, muscles, and other soft tissues absorb less, which is why they look grey in the image.

Of course, a dental radiograph is not a one-size-fits-all diagnostic procedure. Doctors and specialists use x-rays to determine any possible oral care issues, such as impacted or abnormal development of the teeth, and even gum disease. They’re divided into two main categories: the intraoral and extraoral.

Intraoral Radiographs

In this type of procedure, the x-ray film is placed inside the mouth. This type of radiograph is the most common among all the types of dental x-rays. Intraoral radiographs provide a tremendous amount of detail, letting your dentist find cavities and check the health of your entire tooth–enamel to root. Types of intraoral x-rays include:

  1. Bite-wing X-rays unravel the upper and lower teeth in a specific area in your mouth. This type of radiograph shows the molars (backmost teeth) and the premolars. After biting a wing-shaped device, one or more images are taken. Your dentist checks the radiographic image for any signs of decay and gum disease. This type of imaging can also help your dentist during restorations and fillings.
  2. Periapical X-rays are captured almost the same way as bite-wing x-rays, but only one tooth is examined. This type of x-ray shows the entire tooth from the crown down to the root to check changes around the tooth and neighboring bone structures.
  3. Occlusal X-rays show nearly the entire arch of the teeth on either the upper or lower jaw.

Extraoral Radiographs

This kind of procedure provides information on the jaw and skull. Unlike intraoral x-rays, this type of radiograph gives fewer details of an individual tooth. Here are examples and brief explanations of each:

  1. Panoramic X rays show the entire mouth area to detect developing and impacted teeth in the upper or lower jaw. Some dentists also use this procedure to help diagnose tumors.
  2. Tomograms examine structures in the mouth that are difficult to see because of obstacles and nearby structures blocking the typical view. Only one layer is shown while rest are blurred out.
  3. Cephalometric projections show an entire side of the head to help orthodontists determine the best teeth-realignment approach.
  4. Dental Computed (CT) Tomography looks at interior structures in 3D to detect problems in facial bones such as cysts, tumours, and fractures.
  5. Cone Beam CT creates high-quality 3-D images of your soft tissues, nerves, and bones to help dentists in tooth implant procedures
  6. Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) takes a 3-D view of the oral cavity including your jaw and teeth to evaluate soft tissues

Final Thoughts

This list is not exhaustive, other types of specialized intraoral and extraoral radiographs not mentioned. Both types of x-rays can be vital in helping your dentists create a comprehensive dental care plan and treatment specifically tailored for you. Hopefully this gives you a clear picture (pun intended) of how important x-rays are in making your dentist’s work more straightforward, and your smile brighter.

Rest assured that at Airdrie Springs Dental, we only use digital X-rays which produce the lowest possible dose of radiation

Please call us at 587 317 4161 or CLICK HERE to schedule an appointment or receive more information from us at Airdrie Springs Dental.

Your smile could change your life!

Smiling makes you seem polite, friendly, and capable. If you look sad, nervous or anxious, maybe even in a bad mood; other people wonder if they want to be around you.

As simple a thing as a bright smile could lead you to success because in business, it gives coworkers confidence that you are certain with what you are doing!

You might also be surprised to learn that how big you smile can predict your life span. A 2010 Wayne State University research project studied pre-1950s major league player baseball cards. According to Ron Gutman, author of Smile: The Astonishing Powers of a Simple Act, “The researchers found that the span of a player’s smile could actually predict the span of his life.

Players who didn’t smile for their baseball card pictures lived an average of only 72.9 years, whereas players with beaming smiles lived an average of almost 80 years.” Must be the endorphin rush that keeps you going longer!

Smiling can make you happy, and it leads the people around you to smile as well. Buddhist author Thich Nhat Hanh said, “Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy.”

A lovely woman with a brilliant smile that lights up her face.
A brilliant smile transforms you


Welcome to the world of cosmetic dentistry!

While traditional dentistry addresses the health of your teeth and gums, cosmetic dentistry focuses on the appearance of your teeth, mouth, and smile.

Cosmetic dentistry has been around for decades, but the materials used today are more durable and natural looking than those used in the past.

Ways to fix your smile via Cosmetic Dentistry

  1. Dental Crowns: Crowns, aka as caps, are custom made to fit over your existing tooth after it has been prepped. For cosmetic purposes, crowns are usually made from ceramic, porcelain or porcelain fused to metal. Crowns are used in cosmetic dentistry to cover teeth that are broken or chipped, have large fillings, are oddly shaped, or to cover spaces in between teeth.
  2. Veneers: This is a procedure that can be used to repair or improve the appearance of a tooth that has been badly stained, broken or chipped, or mildly crooked. These are made from a thin piece of porcelain or other material and cemented to your tooth.
  3. Orthodontic Treatments: Orthodontics is not just a childhood rite of passage any longer. More and more adults are seeking treatment from orthodontists for cosmetic purposes. Advancements in straightening teeth include braces that actually hide the fact you are having orthodontic work done!
  4. Tooth Bonding: Bonding is the process in which tooth-colored material made of composite resin, placed on the tooth then shaped to fit and hardened with a light. This can be used as a cost-effective method to repair and improve the appearance of a tooth that has been stained, broken or chipped and even fill in gaps.
  5. Teeth Whitening: Sometimes the simplest thing will be the most effective at giving you the bright smile you deserve. There are several methods available: surface abrasives (often found in toothpaste), bleaching and bleaching with laser or light. Not everyone is a suitable candidate for any or all of these procedures. Thin enamel, sensitive teeth or gums, or other oral issues may mean whitening will cause more harm than good. Therefore, you should always check with your dentist before whitening your teeth at home.                                                               
a smiling mouth with teeth shown half stained and half bright white
Whitening your teeth can bring a glow to your smile

We would love to be your choice to bring out the radiant smile you’ve been looking for.

Please call us at 587 317 4161 or

Click here to contact us.

If You Get a Cavity or Need Dental Work While Wearing Braces…

Remembering to brush, rinse and floss on a regular basis is a chore by itself…even without braces. But the added nooks and crannies of orthodontics make brushing details even more difficult. Keeping your teeth clean while wearing braces surely can be a challenge and much more difficult to remove food particles that get stuck in between the teeth and brackets.

 

First, before your braces are put on, your dentist most probably took care of any issues you had with regards to cavities. So, you should be in good oral health when the braces go on.

 

But, it is true, cavities can develop while you are wearing your braces.

 

If this does happen, there are generally 2 choices for your dentist to make:

 

Do nothing for the time being. If your issue is found to be in very early stages, it may be possible for the decision to be made to wait until the braces come off to fix the issue.  In the meantime, your role is to take good care of your mouth while you have your braces.

 

Take action. The second choice might be to move forward with fixing the problem, In some instances, fillings may need to be done before braces are complete.

 

Regardless of what is needed, you can be rest assured your dentist is working to achieve the same thing you want.  A beautiful

Good dental hygiene is necessary
Good dental hygiene is necessary

straight smile is the goal for all of you.

 

Your part is to brush and floss according to the daily routine to keep as much as possible from gathering on the braces and teeth while wearing your braces.

 

 

In addition to providing tips through these posts, we’re also pleased to offer a FREE report that offers important dental information. Why not get your copy now? The Consumer’s Guide to Straighter, Whiter Teeth is just a click away. And it’s absolutely FREE.

 

If you need further information, want to make an appointment, or have a question answered, you’re more than welcome to call us at Airdrie Springs Dentist at 587 317 4161 or click here to visit our website.

What Factors Determine How Long You’ll Have to Wear Braces?

braces
braces

People of all ages, just like you, are considering orthodontic treatment for a variety of reasons. Maybe you’ve lost some teeth and your teeth are shifting. Or you have crooked teeth and hate your smile. From adolescence to the senior years, you can get fitted with braces to improve your smile once again and regain good oral health.

One of the most common questions dentists hear is, “How long will I have to wear my braces?” The answer basically is as long as it takes. Unfortunately, there are many factors that go into how long the process takes for each person. Generally, however, the average length of time is less than two years, but, again, this can vary for many reasons.

For example, if you have an underlying health condition, you may require longer or shorter time periods for braces. Health problems, such as diabetes, congestive heart failure, and cancer may impact your ability to get braces at all. And, for sure, can have a bearing on how long the braces are worn.

If you have a specific medical condition, it’s a good idea to get a medical exam before consulting with a dentist to help clarify special conditions. That way the dentist can adjust the timeline for wearing braces as needed.

If you’re someone who’s not likely to closely follow the oral dental care prescribed for orthodontia treatment, then you may prolong the braces process.

However, if you are compliant and eager to reap the exciting benefits of an attractive new smile, you’ll will probably wear your braces for the shortest amount of time and typically see the most effective results.

Orthodontic treatment is like other types of medical treatment. The more closely you follow the doctor’s orders, the more quickly the cure will be achieved.  Unless, of course you have a potentially disruptive medical condition.

 

In addition to providing tips through these posts, we’re also pleased to offer a FREE report that offers important dental information. Why not get your copy now? The Consumer’s Guide to Straighter, Whiter Teeth is just a click away. And it’s absolutely FREE.

 

If you need further information, want to make an appointment, or have a question answered, you’re more than welcome to call us at Airdrie Springs Dentist at 587 317 4161 or click here to visit our website.

How to Take Care of Your Braces

There’s no doubt braces can do wonders for your smile.  However, you need to give both the braces and your teeth proper care to avoid damaging either while you’re wearing braces.

 

It goes without saying…It’s important to brush, and floss regularly. Also, keep in mind, you should still keep your regular visits with your dentist.

 

In addition to this, the next most important thing is for you to be cautious of the foods you eat. Food has the greatest potential for doing damage to your braces. So, think before you pop something into your mouth.

 

Here are two things to keep out of your mouth when you have braces:

        Stay away from chewy or sticky sweets

Braces need care to keep from being damaged
Braces need care to keep from being damaged

Treats such as caramels, gum and taffy can get wrapped around and bend your wires and brackets. Also, the sugar in these treats stays on your teeth.

Stay away from hard foods

Hard or crunchy foods, such as chips, ice, and hard candy to name a few can snap a wire or bracket and break it. Obviously, this is something you want to also avoid.

 

When you have your braces put on, the dentist should give you a list of other things to avoid and instructions to follow. Make sure you listen and follow the instructions. If you do, the process of moving your teeth into proper position will not be delayed by having to fix something along the way.

 

Certainly, if you have any questions regarding your oral care during this time or something has bent or breaks, contact your dentist.

 

By taking good care and giving up a few things along the way for a brief period of time, your attention to taking good care of your braces will pay off quickly.

 

 

In addition to providing tips through these posts, we’re also pleased to offer a FREE report that offers important dental information. Why not get your copy now? The Consumer’s Guide to Straighter, Whiter Teeth is just a click away. And it’s absolutely FREE.

 

If you need further information, want to make an appointment, or have a question answered, you’re more than welcome to call us at Airdrie Springs Dentist at 587 317 4161 or click here to visit our website.

Wisdom Doesn’t Come From Your Teeth…

Be wise and have them removed

It is recommended people get their wisdom teeth out since they pose many potential problems.

 

Generally, this happens during the young adult years. For many, having wisdom teeth extracted is an easy choice.

 

But for others, not so much.

 

Are you nervous about having your wisdom teeth pulled?

 

If you are, you should  find comfort in knowing, most people experience little interruption to their regular schedule. Following treatment, you may feel like resting, and it’s a good idea to take it easy. But, in most cases, you’ll be able to go about your day to day activities without any major changes to your routine.

 

If that’s not enough to put your mind at ease and you still have some anxiety, you might want to consider one of the forms sedation dentistry now available.

 

Sedation can help with the anxiety of tooth removal
Sedation can help with the anxiety of tooth removal

It doesn’t matter if you want to “just take the edge off” or be “totally unaware”, there are options to allow you to have the experience you need to get your procedure done.

 

You should discuss this with your dentist and make certain the dentist and staff are trained in all levels of sedation.

 

Sure, you may grow wiser with age and experience, but those wisdom teeth have nothing to do with it. The best thing you can do is to have them removed.  Now that you know there’s a comfortable way to do it, eliminating any fear you may have…there’s no reason not to.

 

In addition to providing tips through these posts, we’re also pleased to offer a FREE report that offers important dental information. Why not get your copy now? Patient’s Guide To Sedation For Dentistry is just a click away. And it’s absolutely FREE.

 

If you need further information, want to make an appointment, or have a question answered, you’re more than welcome to call us at Airdrie Springs Dentist at 587 317 4161 or click here to visit our website.

What You Should Know About Your Wisdom Teeth

“Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom.” – Aristotle

 

Here’s something you should know about your wisdom teeth.

 

Nine out of ten people have at least one impacted wisdom tooth. Ouch!

a partial erupted wisdom tooth can be very painful and lead to complications.
a partial erupted wisdom tooth can be very painful and lead to complications.

When there isn’t enough room for a tooth to enter the mouth fully, it’s referred to as being “impacted.” If left untreated, it may damage neighboring teeth, or become infected due to the difficulty in reaching and cleaning that area of the mouth and gums.

 

Many dental patients, maybe even like you, have had to decide what to do about your wisdom teeth.

 

To determine what is best for you, however, a visit to your dentist is the smartest solution. Keep in mind, though, if you have them, you should address this issue sooner rather than later.

 

 

In addition to providing tips through these posts, we’re also pleased to offer a FREE report that offers important dental information. Why not get your copy now Patient’s Guide To Sedation For Dentistry is just a click away. And it’s absolutely FREE.

 

If you need further information, want to make an appointment, or have a question answered, you’re more than welcome to call us at Airdrie Springs Dentist at 587 317 4161 or click here to visit our website.

Diabetes and Dental Health: Part 4 – Infection and Cold Sores

With so many Canadians struggling with diabetes, this blog series on Diabetes and Dental Health, is providing a few tips on what to look for and some answers as to what you might do to help.

 

Obviously, the importance of brushing, flossing, and keeping your blood sugar under control is number one on the list. But there may be diabetic signs and symptoms that you have questions about.

 

Thrush
Thrush

For instance, many diabetics report issues with their ability to fight off infection. One of the most common infections that affect the mouth for diabetics is called “thrush”. This is seen often in babies or those who wear dentures, as well.   But, thrush is a form of yeast infection caused by the higher sugar-content in your saliva.

Should you experience this condition, you need to let you doctor or dentist know right away so they can prescribe the proper treatment for you.

 

Have you ever noticed a cold sore or a cut in your mouth that doesn’t quite seem to want to go away? This can be another way diabetes may affect your mouth. Poor control of blood sugar can keep injuries from healing quickly and properly. If you have something in your mouth that you feel isn’t healing as it should, see your dentist.

 

The most important part of this series is to make you aware of things to look for if you have diabetes.

 

If you think you have any infections in your mouth or have sores that won’t heal; or any of the other symptoms mentioned before, be sure to call your dentist and schedule an appointment.

 

In addition to providing tips through these posts, we’re also pleased to offer a FREE report that offers important dental information. Why not get your copy now? The Consumer’s Guide to Straighter, Whiter Teeth is just a click away. And it’s absolutely FREE.

 

If you need further information, want to make an appointment, or have a question answered, you’re more than welcome to call us at Airdrie Springs Dentist at 587 317 4161 or click here to visit our website.

Diabetes and Dental Health: Part 3 – 2 More Signs in Your Mouth…

As part of this series on Diabetes and Dental Health the importance of brushing, flossing and keeping your blood sugar under control have been discussed.

Here are two more signs you may notice and, when possible, what you can do.

The first mouth sign many diabetics complain of is dry mouth.

If you find you’re thirstier than usual, it could be from the diabetes. It might also be caused by certain medications you’ve been prescribed. However, either way, you can combat dry mouth by drinking water, chewing sugar free gum, or eating healthy snacks with a satisfying crunch (carrots, celery, etc.).

The more saliva your mouth is producing, the harder it is for the sugar in your mouth to thrive. And, as stated before, it’s important to keep sugar off your teeth as much as possible.

Secondly, you might have noticed a difference in the flavor of some of your favorite foods.

salt and sugar
salt and sugar

You aren’t alone. Many diabetics report having to add more salt/sugar to their food to get it to taste the way they remember.

While adding these may help the taste of your food, it’s not good for your mouth and overall oral health.

Not only can this lead to you having more cavities, but if you find yourself with a bad taste in your mouth more often than not, you’ll want to see your dentist. There may be something else going on you should have checked out.

 

In addition to providing tips through these posts, we’re also pleased to offer a FREE report that offers important dental information. Why not get your copy now? The Consumer’s Guide to Straighter, Whiter Teeth is just a click away. And it’s absolutely FREE.

 

If you need further information, want to make an appointment, or have a question answered, you’re more than welcome to call us at Airdrie Springs Dentist at 587 317 4161 or click here to visit our website.