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How Cavemen Took Care of Their Teeth

Friday, January 20th, 2017

Imagine living in a time when modern conveniences, inventions, hygiene and healthcare were not just luxuries; they were non-existent. Sure, the simplicity of our ancestors’ lifestyle may have had some benefits. But we should all be thankful for modern dentistry, and the convenience of items like toothbrushes, floss and mouthwash. Not to mention the training of dental professionals.

Over the course of humankind, people have been testing and trying things they had access to in an attempt to keep their mouths and teeth clean. Twigs and sticks, powdered concoctions from eggshells and ox hooves, pig’s neck bristles, salt, chalk, and rough cloths make the list of historical dental instruments and tools that people tried and used in an attempt to keep their teeth free of debris (1).

Recently, researchers have discovered clues that tell us how cavemen cleaned their teeth. Karen Harder, a researcher, took a deeper look at calcified plaque from some of the oldest human remains in Europe. How was she able to analyze plaque from thousands of years ago?

As she explained: “The dental plaque is a film that covers your teeth and that’s why you have to brush your teeth every day. If not, it hardens and becomes calcified. Within about 10 days, it’s attached onto your tooth as this extremely hard material that you can’t get off unless you go to the dentist.” Since the caveman had no dentist to speak of, Harder was able to chisel off and analyze this material for further insight into the caveman’s lifestyle.

This analysis of the calcified dental plaque gave insight into the diet and environment of this archaeological specimen. She was able to determine that people in his era ate grasses, seeds, plants and meat. All of these items were eaten raw (2,3).

Grooves between the teeth, combined with indigestible wood fibers she found between the teeth, suggest rudimentary toothpicks that were jammed into the teeth to clean between them as a type of oral hygiene activity (2,3).

cavemen used sticks as rudimentary toothpicks

What Did The Cavemen Have Going For Them?

The evidence Harder found showed the caveman’s diet included mostly starchy plants and meat consumption. Their teeth were actually in pretty great shape despite not having access to today’s toothbrushes, toothpastes and floss.

This is because the processed, sugary and carbohydrate-laden foods and drinks that are so abundant in our society today were not present in his surroundings. This means the cavemen were not as predisposed to things like sugar and acid-related tooth decay, bacteria growth or inflammation, as we are with today’s typical diet (3).

Our teeth are whiter and straighter than our ancestors’ teeth were, but we are still more likely to develop cavities because of the sugars, processed carbohydrates and dietary and lifestyle differences. This means we can’t rely on toothpicks (or sticks) to keep our teeth clean. We must stay diligent with good oral hygiene practices and habits. Thankfully, our dental health practices have progressed into the 21st century, giving us access to skilled dental care and tools and resources for fresh breath and healthy mouths, without having to rummage for and rely on twigs or homemade toothpastes.

today's oral hygiene depends on daily brushing and flossing

Call Hagen Dental Practice Today

Are your oral hygiene habits backsliding into those of a caveman? Give Hagen Dental a call at (513) 251-5500 and we will help you achieve a healthy smile!

Sources:

  1. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/04/12/AR2009041202655.html
  2. http://link.springer.com/epdf/article/10.1007/s00114-016-1420-x?shared_access_token=JTuGtofFrWkm76yOABrZt_e4RwlQNchNByi7wbcMAY4elA6FNFLLnlVqGmzv8ewk3pOw-TMnmrQ9de4WZSb2CJufJ81Mpvwv3EQlU56y1Hxk_VJOU3IyR4cRyLfz4j_bTKcJJEJC6Uq7Vv8QuHbX4fcDgI7fMO_V8yf2OAnR2KE=
  3. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/speaking-of-science/wp/2016/12/19/a-researcher-discovered-how-cave-men-cleaned-their-teeth-it-will-make-you-want-to-brush-yours/?postshare=4671482250662620&tid=ss_tw&utm_term=.ed8f16f9fac6

Be Ready For the Mistletoe With These Breath-Boosting Tips

Tuesday, December 20th, 2016

The holiday season is upon us! And with it, a host of office Christmas parties, invitations to dinners, white elephant exchanges with your friends, and ugly sweater get-togethers.

Mistletoe can be hiding in the eaves of any social gathering, so it is a great time of year to ensure your breath is fresh, whether you want to be ready for a quick peck under the mistletoe with your crush, or a long smooch with your spouse. Use these dental hygiene and better breath tips as part of your holiday-ready routine!

is-your-breath-ready-for-mistletoe

The Quick-Fix Options

Carrying a small travel (or even disposable) toothbrush and small tube of toothpaste is a great option, especially if you’re planning on going straight to a holiday get-together right after a long day of work or school. Even if you forget the paste, brushing with just water can offer a little bit of help to reduce the microbes collecting in your mouth after meals.

Flossing with a mint flavored dental floss helps remove food particles from your recent meal. Flossing on the go can be made more realistic with products such as disposable floss picks.

Gargle with an anti-bacterial mouthwash for 20-30 seconds. Many mouthwashes come in small travel-sized bottles that will fit in your pocket, purse, car or desk. This will help fight bacteria in the mouth that contribute to bad breath and give you an instant odor freshener (1).

Chew on a stick of sugar-free or natural gum. Since dry mouth can lead to bad breath, and gum stimulates saliva production, gum is a helpful choice. As an added bonus, gum can remove some of the food particles left in small gaps in your teeth. Find a nice peppermint flavor for an instant odor cover-up (1).

Chew on a sprig of mint. This herb doesn’t clean your teeth, but will offer a strong minty smell to cover up bad breath temporarily. Just be sure to check the mirror for any stray remnants of the green leaf before heading into the party.

Chew on nuts. This option works well if you are already at the party, and have none of the other options available to you. Nuts have a strong aroma. Additionally, the abrasive texture of nuts will help remove residue or food particles from the teeth, tongue and gums (2).

Order your water with lemon or lime. This acidic, citrusy combination is a powerful tool against bad breath. The moisture of the water keeps your mouth from getting too dry, which helps minimize odor. The acidity of the citrus fruit combats bacteria and masks the odor with its fresh flavor (1).

The Long Term Story: How to Prevent Breath Issues

Once the party is over, it is important you take a step back and find out the underlying cause of your bad breath. Was it just a garlic-laden lunch? Or is the halitosis (bad breath) something you deal with regularly? It could be your oral hygiene habits need a tune-up, or something more serious at play.

Proper dental hygiene habits, such as consistently using floss, mouthwash, and brushing regularly are your best defense against bad breath. These daily habits serve to keep bacteria, food particles and inflammation to a minimum. Ensuring you stick to a regular dental checkup schedule will help keep teeth clean and serve to catch any underlying problems as early as possible, or before they become a big problem.

Staying hydrated is also important to prevent dry mouth induced bad breath. Drinking hot tea after a meal helps to remove food particles, and also contains polyphenols which discourage the growth of bad breath causing bacteria.

However, if bad breath is already a frequent problem, call us to schedule an examination. Chronically foul smelling breath can be a sign of gingivitis, periodontitis, plaque buildup, infections, cavities, gastritis, or poor brushing habits. It is imperative that you consult with Dr. Hagen to discover and eliminate the offender before it affects your long term health.

dont-let-bad-breath-ruin-your-day

Worried About Getting Too Close?

We never want your dental health concerns to get in the way of your personal relationships. Call Hagen Dental practice today to discuss how we can help! (513) 251-5500

Sources:

  • http://www.wikihow.com/Fix-Bad-Breath-on-the-Spot
  • http://www.livescience.com/40052-get-rid-bad-breath.html
  • http://whole30.com/2016/05/whole30-fresh-breath/

Be Thankful: How Science Says that Having Gratitude is Good For Your Health

Thursday, November 17th, 2016

Thanksgiving season reminds us to be grateful for all the positive things in our lives—big and small. The practice of gratitude is not only seasonal, it’s great for your health, too!

benefits-of-gratitude

Gratitude as One of Many Positive Habits

Mental health professionals have recently started taking a close look at how qualities such as gratitude can impact our health. The findings are very positive: grateful people tend to take better care of themselves, and engage in protective and proactive health behaviors such as regular exercise, a healthy diet, good sleeping habits, and regular checkups and examinations from their general practitioner and their dentist (1).

It’s a Stress Reliever

High levels of stress, left unchecked, can make us sick. It’s linked to chronic disease, heart disease, cancers, autoimmune disorders, and a high percentage of why people visit the doctor. But it turns out, gratitude helps people manage stress and cope with daily problems (1).

Boosts Your Immunity

Gratitude and optimism go hand in hand. These characteristics seem to boost the immune system, according to research. A psychology professor at the University of Utah found that people with higher levels of optimism showed higher counts of blood cells that are important for immune system function, compared to more pessimistic people (1). Being consistently mindful of the things you have to be thankful for boosts your well-being (2).

Helps You Be a Better Friend

According to a 2003 study from the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, gratitude tends to boost pro-social behaviors, such as helping others, lending emotional support, or assisting with problems. This also has the benefit of strengthening your relationships (2).

learn-to-have-more-gratitude

How to Become More Optimistic and Grateful

 Those who are more mindful of benefits they’ve received, or whose perspective in life has them focusing their attention outward tend to naturally have a more grateful mindset. But you can learn to increase the gratitude in your life!

Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Start a gratitude journal. Keep it by your bed and write a few things in it each night for which you are grateful. Psychology Today reported this habit has a side benefit: falling asleep faster and staying asleep longer (2).
  • Tell someone you are grateful for them. Gratitude can be contagious!
  • Create a list of great things in your life. Then ask yourself, “Do I take these for granted?” Look at this list daily as a reminder of all you have to be thankful for.
  • Watch your self-talk, and your conversation with others. Are you using optimistic and appreciative sentiments and phrases? Or do your words, thoughts and conversations tend to have a negative or complaining undertone?
  • Put yourself in someone else’s shoes. Changing the perspective of how you look at a situation can make you more understanding and patient about what is going on. This can help improve your gratitude as well.
  • When you feel yourself getting upset, or ready to complain about a situation, stop for a minute. Is there anything about the situation that has potential? Is there a silver lining? Can you look on the bright side?
  • Find the positive in a challenge. What positive traits might a tough situation help you improve? Patience? Empathy? Understanding? Teamwork? Courage? Be grateful for the challenge and the learning experience.

So, practice gratitude this month, keep smiling, and enjoy your Thanksgiving with your newly appreciative attitude. And be sure to sprinkle in a healthy dose of gratitude into your life all year long—for your health! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving from Hagen Dental Practice.

Call Hagen Dental Practice Today

Have any questions you want to know the answer to? We’d love to answer any of the questions you have! Schedule your next visit with Hagen Dental by calling us at (513) 251-5500.

Sources:

  1. http://www.webmd.com/women/features/gratitute-health-boost#1
  2. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/07/21/gratitude-healthy-benefits_n_2147182.html

How to Make the Most of Your Invisalign Experience

Thursday, November 10th, 2016

Invisalign straightens the teeth using a series of clear, removable aligners. These aligners are custom-made for each patient. Every two weeks, you replace your aligner with a new set to gradually and gently move your teeth towards the final position.

The concept is the same as braces and other orthodontia, with some big differences: Invisalign is more comfortable, less noticeable, and it is removable. A 3-D computer imaging program creates a complete treatment plan that starts at your teeth’s current position and takes you all the way through to the desired outcome in two-week increments (1).

With Invisalign, you can make changes to your teeth and achieve the smile you’ve dreamed of without disruptions to your life.

benefits-of-invisalign

The Many Benefits of Invisalign

 Here are just a few of the benefits you can experience:

  •  Most cases are fairly quick. It typically takes between 9 and 15 months for the Invisalign aligners to correct and straighten a smile.
  • Invisalign aligners can correct issues such as gapped teeth, overbite, crossbite, underbite, and overcrowding
  • Since the aligners are nearly invisible, you can feel more confident smiling and showing your teeth than with the use of traditional braces.
  • The Invisalign is comfortable! Without the metal braces, wires and headgear associated with traditional braces, you avoid irritation to the gums and surrounding tissues.
  • There are fewer trips into the Dentist for evaluation. Your progress is checked every one to two months.
  • You don’t have to sacrifice the things you love! One of the best parts about Invisalign is that you can eat and drink whatever you like (see below for a few caveats). Since the aligners are removable for proper cleaning of your mouth, you do not have to limit your food selection. You wear your Invisalign for most of the day; but you remove them during cleaning, brushing and flossing.

enjoy-your-invisalign-experience

How to Ensure You Have a Great Invisalign Experience


Now that you know the benefits, here is how to make sure you get the most out of the experience:

1. Travel toothbrushes will come in handy! Carry a travel toothbrush and paste with you, and try to brush your teeth after every meal. Because the aligners are placed over your teeth, food particles can become trapped.

The best defense is to keep your teeth clean. Patients who practice excellent dental hygiene habits during their Invisalign treatment are less likely to develop cavities, bad breath, or other problems (2).

2. When your two-week aligner switch date arrives, consider making the change to the new aligner at night. This will help prevent tooth aches and discomfort that can happen if you switch them during the day. The good news is, the changes are so gradual that pain is rare. However, discomfort could occur, especially in your first few sets of aligners.

3. Take good care of your aligners! Avoid discoloration and bad breath by dropping them into a glass of water with a denture cleaning tablet every morning. This helps to keep them fresh, clean, and looking nice and clear.

Avoid cleaning them with toothpaste, since some toothpastes contain abrasive ingredients. Always carry your case with you! This decreases the chances of them getting lost or thrown away while you are out at a restaurant, or need to take them out for some reason.

4. Be cautious in regards to your beverage choices. Water is important to stay hydrated, avoid bad breath, and keep a comfortable mouth. Avoid drinking hot drinks like coffee and tea while you are wearing your Invisalign aligners. The hot temperature could warp or deform them.

Avoid sugary drinks, which increase your risk for tooth decay or unusual buildup or texture on your teeth. Avoid red wines, which can cause yellow staining them.

5. After it’s all over, wear your retainer. Keep in mind that you will still have to wear a retainer for a period of time after your Invisalign treatment is finished. After investing time and money into your newly straightened mouth, you don’t want to backslide from that progress.

Call Hagen Dental Today to Learn More About Invisalign

 Do you want to learn more about Invisalign? Or are you simply overdue for your next dental cleaning? A straighter smile is just a phone call away! Call for a no cost/no obligation consultation at (513) 251-5500 to determine if you’re a candidate for Invisalign.

Sources:

  1. http://hagendds.com/invisalign_dentist_cincinnati_oh.html
  2. http://www.lifehack.org/486860/5-hacks-everyone-with-invisalign-needs-to-know

Minerals and Vitamins for a Healthy Smile

Saturday, August 20th, 2016

the health of your teeth hagen dental

Good oral hygiene practices are essential for a healthy smile. But have you ever wondered if your diet supports the best building blocks to keep those teeth strong? Mineral deficiencies can lead to weak bones and teeth. Calcium, phosphorus, magnesium and vitamin D are all important minerals and vitamins when it comes to preventing tooth decay and oral health issues. Check out these lists of foods that support you in your quest for strong, healthy teeth.

Calcium — Your teeth and jaw are formed and kept strong with the use of lots of calcium. Regular intake of this mineral helps keep your teeth enamel and jaw bones strong and healthy. Most of the body’s calcium is stored in the bones (teeth included!), while some circulates in the bloodstream for other uses. Consuming too little calcium can put you at risk of gum disease and tooth decay, and you will leech calcium from the bone to use for other body functions.

Sources of Calcium: Kale, tofu, chia seeds, sardines, canned salmon, green leafy vegetables such as collard greens, spinach and kale, dairy products, cauliflower, cabbage, almonds, bok choy, figs, and sesame seeds.1, 6

Phosphorus — Calcium and phosphorus work together to maximize the strength of bones and teeth. Without phosphorus, calcium can’t do it’s job properly. The combination of these two minerals is essential in children, whose bones and teeth are developing and forming their hard structure.

Sources of phosphorus: Pumpkin seeds, romano cheese, salmon, shellfish, almonds and other nuts, pork, beef, tofu, eggs, grapes, citrus fruit, cucumbers, tomatoes, beans and lentils.4, 8

your teeth health hagen dental cincinnatiMagnesium — Magnesium helps to build strong enamel for your teeth, as well as proper tooth formation. It also helps prevent the formation of cavities. Magnesium also works well alongside calcium for many functions.

Sources of Magnesium: Dark chocolate, green leafy vegetables like spinach, kale and swiss chard, black beans, almonds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, brown rice, cashews, salmon, raisins and avocado.2, 3, 7

Vitamin D — Vitamin D regulates the body’s balance of calcium and phosphorus and can promote their absorption. Vitamin D also helps to decrease inflammation of gums which is associated with periodontal disease.

Sources of Vitamin D: Natural sunlight (your body produces vitamin D with exposure to sun! This is your BEST source of D), shellfish, fish such as salmon, catfish and mackerel, eggs and butter.4, 5

These lists aren’t the only places to find these great bone builders, but they are a great place to start. See something new? Be adventurous this week and try a new recipe. Try to incorporate some of these foods in your regular diet alongside your other dental care routine. You’ll enjoy them knowing you are helping build and maintain a healthy smile.hagen dental cincinnati ohio

Set Up Your Next Dental Visit at Hagen Dental Practice

Have any questions you want to know the answer to? We’d love to answer any of the questions you have! Schedule your next visit with Hagen Dental by calling us at(513) 251-5500.

Sources/References used directly in this article:

1.http://www.besthealthmag.ca/best-you/oral-health/6-vitamins-and-minerals-your-mouth-needs/

2. http://www.123dentist.com/important-minerals-and-vitamins-for-your-oral-health

3.http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2012/12/17/magnesium-benefits.aspx

4. https://www.dhsv.org.au/dental-advice/teeth-tips-and-facts/calcium-vitamin-d-and-phosphorus

5.http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2009/11/12/vitamin-d1.aspx

6. http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/blog/whole-story/non-dairy-sources-calcium

7. https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Magnesium-HealthProfessional/

8. https://www.healthaliciousness.com/articles/high-phosphorus-foods.php

What to Snack On While You Watch the Big Summer Blockbuster

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2016

 

dental health and movie snacks

The sticky, gooey, sugary, crunchy and sweet snacks for sale at the movie theater might taste great along with the newest flick, but all that sugar and acid sitting on your teeth for the duration of the movie is a big no-no when it comes to your oral health. (Not to mention that hard candies can result in a broken or chipped tooth, too!)

So how can you enjoy the summer blockbuster without forgoing the snacks entirely? Check out these ideas:

  1. Fresh fruits and raw veggies: Things like oranges, melons and apples can be peeled and sliced to munch on while you watch the movie. Berries are also great bite-sized delights, and contain natural sugars to satisfy your sweet tooth. Vegetables can pop just as satisfying a crunch as a bowl of popcorn or candy. Things like celery, carrots, or cucumbers are fresh and won’t leave your teeth covered in sugar. Make it fun! Dunk them or spread peanut butter on these veggies for some added flavor.
  2. Craving something salty? Look no further than nuts and seeds: A bag of sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, or nuts in any combination can be a great accompaniment to the film. The best part? No sugar build-up on your teeth compared to that bag of Mike and Ikes! Even more good news: No sugar crash later.
  3. Oven-baked chips. This might take a bit more of your time, but some kinds of DIY chips can be made in less than an hour! Try oven-baked sweet potato chips or even thinly-sliced apple chips. Or, if you are more adventurous, you can try the super-trendy kale chips or really push the envelope with zucchini chips! The benefit is that these are healthy options that still give you a crispy, delicious treat! Plus, it’s hard to eat “too many” kale chips. Depending on the kind of chip you make (and where you are watching your movie), you can pair your chips with hummus or another healthy dip. At the least, you can use seasoning (such as cinnamon for the apple chips) to pack-in the flavor.healthy summer snacks for your teeth
  4. But what to drink? As you’ve heard us mention, sugary drinks like sodas, juices and sports drinks pack a lot of sugar in a small dose. Left on the teeth, these acidic and sweet beverages lend a perfect environment to the bacteria and decay you want to avoid. Your best bet? Drink water! You can still feel refreshed and quench your thirst with an icy cold bottle of water.Ever think that water is “too boring”? If you really want to, add a few strawberries or berries of choice to your water with some ice. It will give it a little extra “pop” without all that added sugar. The more you drink water this way (or without anything added at all), the more you’ll find that you will crave water without all that added flavor.

Plan for Success

Going to the theater or watching a movie at home with friends or family? Choose items from this list that you can purchase at the theater, when that’s possible. Or, if you feel comfortable doing so, pack up things they don’t sell – such as the fruits and veggies – and bring them with you to the theater in small containers that open quietly. Of course at home, you can be fully prepared by planning a bit beforehand.

Another benefit of doing a bit of planning ahead of time for your healthy treats? You will be a role model for your kids. If you want your kids to develop good eating and oral hygiene habits, you’ll have to do the same. Teach your kids how delicious and fun fruits and veggies can be instead of candy; if they understand why these are smarter choices, they can learn to make healthier choices themselves. They will also learn that the best part of movie night is togetherness and entertainment, not the candy!

healthy summer snacks

You Can Involve the Family, Too!

Involve the family when planning for your movie night so that you are sure to make some snacks that they will enjoy. Let the kids pick the movie – AND the snacks! Give them a list of approved snacks, but let them make the ultimate choice. This can help teach them about the difference between sugary and healthy snacks.

So whether it’s date night or family movie night…or whether you are renting from Redbox or heading to the big screen, you can enjoy snacks alongside your featured show – just plan ahead with these simple tips to make a choice that your teeth will thank you for.

Call Hagen Dental Today

Have any questions you want to know the answer to or just want to schedule your next visit to the dentist? We’d love to answer any of the questions you have! Schedule your next visit with Hagen Dental by calling us at (513) 251-5500.

References/Sources for more information:

  1. http://www.colgate.com/en/us/oc/oral-health/basics/nutrition-and-oral-health/article/smart-snacks-for-healthy-teeth
  2. http://www.1800dentist.com/20-smart-snacks-for-healthy-teeth/

Foods (And Drinks) That Damage Your Enamel

Friday, July 15th, 2016

Did you know? Your tooth enamel health is directly related to what you are eating, including those beverages you are drinking!

Keeping your teeth healthy involves more than just brushing and flossing.

foods and drinks that can damage your enamel hagen dental

Your enamel is the hard outer layer of your teeth. In fact, it’s the hardest substance in the human body—and for good reason! This surface layer helps protect the sensitive inner parts of the tooth from decay and damage. However, even enamel is subject to harm if not treated well. It is normal for some wear and tear to occur, but by focusing on what you are feeding your body (and thus putting into your mouth) you can keep that outer barrier of your teeth stronger (5).

Maintain the Health of Your Enamel

Here are some foods to avoid or minimize for optimum enamel health:

Sugary Foods: Increased sugars feed bacteria in your mouth. Left unchecked, these bacteria produce acidic byproducts, which can soften and slowly wear away at your enamel. Candy, especially sour candies, which are sugar-filled and acidic, are the least friendly combo for your teeth! But sugar doesn’t just hide in candy…Check your food labels on condiments, cereals, and other desserts and snacks for high amounts of added sugar (1, 2).

Sugary Beverages: Just like sugary foods, beverages can be a sneaky source of sugar and acid, ready to harm your enamel! Soda is especially bad, because not only is it sugary, it has additional acidic components. Coffee is high in acidity, and people often load it with syrups or sugars, too! Just imagine what happens if a highly acidic, sugary drink sits on your enamel for hours on end. Try cutting back on that cup of joe, or leaving out the sweetener. Frequent use of sports drinks in recent years, especially in children, has also been shown to harm enamel since the sugar sits on their teeth during activity, in many cases. Even fruit juices should be taken in moderation, because they are high in simple sugars and acid as well (1, 2, 6).enamel facts hagen dental

Foods that give you heartburn: Severe heartburn means stomach acid is moving up the esophagus. Those stomach acids that escape the stomach can reach your mouth and erode the enamel as well. So if you have certain foods that trigger heartburn, avoid them (1).

Ice: Simply put, ice is for chilling, not chewing! But isn’t water good for you? Yes! And ice is fine in your beverages – but avoid chewing on it! Chewing on hard substances such as ice can damage the enamel. The same is true for very hard candies that you crunch on (3, 6).

Citrus Fruit: Fruits are an excellent choice for incorporating more vitamins into your diet, especially the citrus variety. But heed this warning: frequent exposure to acidic foods, such as citrus fruits like oranges, grapefruits, limes and lemons, can erode your enamel over time. Your best bet? Eat these foods as part of a meal, rather than by themselves (3, 6).

Sticky Foods: Sticky foods, such as sticky candies, taffy, caramels, or even dried fruit such as raisins, can leave residue in your teeth, which means the sugar will sit on the enamel, leaving a food source for bacteria, which will in turn release enamel-damaging acid (2, 3, 6). Limit your intake of these foods to avoid potential damage to your enamel over time.

Starchy Foods: Starch-filled foods, such as potato chips, cookies, cakes, muffins and other starchy, processed snacks, tend to get trapped in your teeth. These starchy carbohydrates stay in your mouth and breakdown into sugar and acid more slowly, thus creating a longer period of sugar and acid threat to the teeth. Bacteria in your mouth love to feed on the left-behind sugars from these foods (3, 4, 6).

Protect Your Enamel

Analyze your diet over the next few weeks to discover which of these simple, daily changes you could make to ensure better health and protection for your enamel! Call Hagen Dental at (513) 251-5500 or visit our website here to learn more.


Sources/References

  1. http://www.webmd.com/oral-health/healthy-mouth-15/beautiful-smile/tooth-enamel-damage
  2. http://www.divinecaroline.com/self/wellness/mind-your-mouth-seven-foods-damage-tooth-enamel
  3. http://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/nutrition/food-tips/9-Foods-That-Damage-Your-Teeth/
  4. http://www.healingteethnaturally.com/foodstuffs-that-can-attack-teeth.html
  5. https://www.humana.com/learning-center/health-and-wellbeing/healthy-living/tooth-enamel
  6. http://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/nutrition/food-tips

 

Your Child’s First Dental Visit: When Should It Be?

Saturday, June 11th, 2016

Did you know? While in previous years, we would have recommended children to have their first dental visit around age 3, we now advise parents to come visit us earlier than that age!

hagen dental dds

We now recommend bringing in your toddler at around 18 months. This is typically about the time when some, but not all, of their baby teeth are in!

Why The Change Now?

We like to see your children to make sure that everything in the mouth is normal! Most children’s baby teeth, also known as primary teeth or even milk teeth, come in with no problems, but sometimes lifestyle factors can affect the health of those teeth…

Let’s dig deeper!

More and more frequently in recent years, for a number of different reasons, the rate of tooth decay in young children is rapidly increasing.

In fact, in recent years, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 42 percent of children, from age 2 to 11, have had cavities in their baby teeth. This high percentage of children with dental decay is much higher than in previous years.

family dentist in cincinnati

Why Is This Happening?

This rapid increase in early childhood caries – or ECC – is actually being called an “epidemic” because of just how prevalent it has now become. Early childhood caries (which in the past has also been called baby bottle tooth decay) can develop with infants or toddlers who go to sleep with a bottle in their mouth. Other children might get into the habit of walking around with a “sippy” cup or using a similar kind of cup, where they expose their teeth, for long periods of time, to sugary liquids or foods – such as sugary or starchy foods. That habit can also lead to decay, especially when it happens day after day.

hagen dental in cincinnatiAnother contributing factor is more widespread use of bottled water and the lack of fluoride. Fluoride helps prevent tooth decay because it increases the rate of re-mineralization in the mouth and it slows down the breakdown of enamel in our children’s mouth as well.

Because many children are drinking more water without fluoride, they aren’t experiencing those same benefits.

As mentioned, historically, this kind of tooth decay was not present to the same degree, and therefore most dentists would recommend a child’s first dentist be around age 3. Now you can put a reminder on your calendar to be sure you come in and see us around 18 months!

Your Child’s First Visit to Dr. Hagen: Timing is Everything!

Before getting worried, remember that tooth decay is preventable and bringing in your child earlier to see us is also a key preventative measure you can take. Bringing your child into the dentist can make sure that children’s teeth are coming in as they should!

taking your child to the dentist cincinnati ohio

It’s also an opportunity to talk about any habits that the baby may have that could be contributing to tooth decay.

Clearly, a healthy mouth is something we all want for our kids. When we have a healthy mouth we promote the ability to chew properly, which in turn, impacts a child’s ability to maintain good nutrition. Healthy teeth from a young age also help encourage speech development, it ensures a space for permanent teeth, and it promotes confidence in the long-term.

Starting young helps promote a lifetime of healthy and bright smiles.

Be sure to bring your child in around 18 months so that we can examine their teeth and gums and help you know the proper oral hygiene methods and techniques for their oral health. Before then, be sure that you are giving your children nothing but water at bedtime so that you can avoid sugary liquids or carbohydrates being exposed to teeth all night long. 

Sources/References

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2014/03/02/cavities-children-teeth/5561911/

 

Hoppin’ Facts About Bunny Teeth

Wednesday, March 23rd, 2016

hagen and easter

Easter often brings a combination of gift baskets, dyed Easter eggs, candy…and of course, the Easter Bunny!

Let’s take a quick look at the Easter bunny…and rabbits in general.

So what exactly does the Easter bunny have to do with Easter? It’s said that the tie-in with Easter is based some in myth, in particular, that a bunny is a symbol of both spring renewal and fertility. Springtime coincides with Easter each year, so that is part of where the tradition comes from.

The real source of the Easter – Easter bunny connection may be from German folklore in particular, with Ostara, the German goddess of springtime. It was said that the German’s “Oschter Haws” (or “Easter Hare”) laid a nest of colored eggs as gifts for the kids who were well behaved!

There’s a few other stories about the Easter Bunny and its origins, but let’s take another look at rabbits – and their teeth!

“Carrots are devine… You get a dozen for a dime, It’s maaaa-gic! – Bugs Bunny

Bugs Bunny, one of the most famous bunnies of all time, once said these words when giving praise to carrots.

But do rabbits really eat carrots?

The answer, is – well, yes! Rabbits are herbivores, so they don’t eat meat. Instead, they eat a combination of grass, clovers, wild flowers and farm crops, including carrots and other root vegetables, at least when they are in the wild.

To chew their food, they have 28 teeth – and, believe it or not – these teeth actually never stop growing. Other members of the rodent family also have this trait, also known as “teeth that are open-rooted” and it actually helps them thrive in the wild.

Why Do Rabbits’ Teeth Keep Growing?

The teeth themselves are somewhat similar to horse teeth – they have 4 large incisors (also known as front teeth) as well as the other, smaller teeth. Many people just think they have 4 large teeth, but the smaller teeth (also called peg teeth) are what help them grind their food into smaller pieces before swallowing.

Being that they are similar to horse teeth, rabbit teeth are designed to break down fibrous veggies. But what happens if a bunny is unable to get enough weed, twigs, grasses or forage in her diet?

If a wild rabbit isn’t able to get that fiber in her diet, she won’t wear down her teeth naturally, meaning the teeth will grow beyond the desirable length. If this happens, the visible section of the tooth will grow higher and meet the other tooth abnormally (instead of where it would properly be worn down). This can lead to abnormal wear for the rabbit, and the teeth can form sharp edges that can be harmful.

Just imagine if your teeth started to shape in a way where they had sharp points – you could imagine the accidental damage your tongue and cheeks could endure!

The same is true for rabbits if this happens, which is part of why they are prone to dental issues. Because rabbits in the wild aren’t always able to get the right kind of diet to wear down the teeth, this can happen more often than you’d think. In some cases, the rabbit’s teeth can become impacted and inflamed, and it can even lead to an infection in the bone.

If a rabbit is a household pet, they are also not always getting the extreme amount of fiber their teeth were designed to break down. In those cases, people can usually take their domesticated rabbits to a vet in order to cut down the teeth on a regular basis.

You Mean Bunny Teeth…Can Be Similar to Ours?

Even if your pet is getting enough fiber to keep their teeth worn down as they would naturally be in the wild, vets recommend taking your bunny in to see the doctor for regular check-ups about twice a year, unless they tell you otherwise.

Just like for us humans, these check-ups can ensure everything in the mouth – even what we can’t see – is as it should be. People may think their bunny is eating normally and isn’t showing signs of pain, but there could be an issue going on, and it’s better to catch it early than have any disease progress. In fact, did you know that rabbits are actually known for being able to hide their pain and illnesses well! Who knew! 

hagen dental dds blogWe Support Your Entire Health: Give Hagen Dental a Call Today

At Hagen Dental, we are here to partner with you so you can improve your total health. Have questions?We’d love to answer them! Give us a call today at (513) 251-5500 to schedule a visit for you or your family.

Sources/References

  1. http://www.kidsplayandcreate.com/fun-bunnyrabbit-facts-for-kids/
  2. http://www.mybunny.org/info/dental-care/
  3. http://www.thedailymeal.com/7-things-you-never-knew-about-easter-bunny/4714

 

 

4 Things You Didn’t Know About Hagen Dental Practice

Sunday, February 21st, 2016

Think you know everything about Hagen Dental?

Think again! Here are 4 things you might not have known about Hagen Dental Practice.

1. Dr. Hagen Can Help You Sleep better!

Did you know that a custom-fit, oral appliance could greatly improve snoring and obstructive sleep apnea?

It may be you – or even your spouse or child – who suffers from snoring, sleep apnea, or a combination of both, as many people do. As recommended by The American Academy of Sleep Medicine, these custom oral devices are a treatment that can greatly improve the quality of our sleep, and our life!

Improve your sleep and gain back all the benefits that come with greater quality of sleep by coming in to see us to see if you are a candidate for this treatment.

We first diagnose and assess the severity of your sleep apnea. After we take a look at your symptoms as well as risk factors, we can construct the appropriate sleep appliance that is best fit for you.

Keep in mind this is a non-invasive way to improve your lifestyle: it is easy to wear, easy to take care of, it is quiet, you can wear it anywhere, it is convenient and it is affordable! We see that as much as 90 percent of those who use the sleep appliance have successful improvement in the problems associated with sleep apnea.

Rest easy: not only can we help you have a beautiful smile, but we can help you feel like a whole new person thanks to improved quality of sleep!

hagen dental practice sleep apnea

2. Our Goal is All About your Entire Health & Well-Being—which is Why We Value Earning Your Trust.

At Hagen Dental Practice, our first goal, from the moment you walk in the door, is to earn a feeling of trust.

We know it is critical to have trust with so that you can feel great about the decisions you make regarding your health. We believe the absolute best dentistry we can provide takes place when we have that trust. We’re all working together toward the common goals of healthy teeth and gums and a beautiful smile.

Certain people have apprehension or worries about visiting the dentist, and the most important thing we can do first is to listen to our patients. Our environment is always comforting and our patients know they come to Hagen Dental and be treated with compassion and understanding.

hagen dental practice in cincinnati ohio

3. Hagen Dental Offers Pain-Free Smile Makeovers.

You may know how we have the latest and greatest when it comes to dentistry—whether it is children’s, cosmetic, family, general, implant, preventive, restorative and sedation dentistry….we take pride in being able to offer you technology, experience, and expertise!

We find that many people want to greatly enhance or improve their smile, but also they want to have a natural look. For those looking for a “smile makeover,” Hagen Dental is your premier destination to do just that…and it can be a pain-free process.

Our goal is that you have confidence when you smile, meet new people, or just when you go to eat—and with our pain-free smile makeovers, this is possible.

That’s why we offer the Snap-On Smile™, which is a removable, cosmetic dental appliance that has been custom-made for your smile. We also work to make sure it fits with your overall facial structure. Snap-On Smile™ is a strong, thin material (specifically, hi-tech dental resin) and it fits directly over your existing teeth.

With Snap-On Smile™, you can get a new, natural-looking smile with no drills, no cutting down of your current teeth, no glue or adhesives, no needles, and if you want to remove it, you can at any time. We’ve used it with people who have dental fears, those who don’t want veneers or want to try these before veneers, and for people with discoloration, stains, gaps in their teeth, and/or missing teeth. Ask us for more information if you’d like to learn more.

4. We Promote (and Live) a Healthy Lifestyle.

Part of total health is going to your dentist regularly and having good daily oral health habits, but part of it is also eating nutritious foods that make us feel great. We approach “total health” as lifestyle decisions or habits that promote our quality of life—behaviors and decisions that set us up for longevity! Another part of this idea of total health is getting enough sleep, and part of total health is of course getting physical activity.

At Hagen Dental, we encourage physical training of some kind, given that it can help us control weight, keeps us in shape, combats disease, boosts energy, promotes sleep, and it can also improve our confidence and sense of well-being.

The Hagen family is often in-training and regularly exercises: in fact, Dr. Hagen is a regular cyclist, and Jenny is an avid runner! Did you know that Dr. Hagen has been riding for more than 25 years and has done the Sunflower Ride 5 times? When Dr. Hagen is on his bike, Jenny can be found running: she has run 5 marathons, and is training for number 6!

On top of this, the office assistant, dental hygienists, dental coordinators and dental assistants on the Hagen Dental team like to run, lift weights, do yoga, and even pure barre—which, in many situations, means waking up at or around 4:30 or 5 AM to get in their workouts!

At the end of the day, the Hagen Dental team knows—just like you likely recognize—that keeping up with our healthy habits takes preparation, sacrifice, diligence and what you could call dedication. But, with all of those things, it is definitely worth it when crossing that finish line!

hagen dental dds

We Can’t Wait to Meet You

Have questions or want to set up your first appointment with Hagen Dental? No matter where you are on your health journey, we can’t wait to meet and support you! Give us a call today at (513) 251-5500 to schedule a visit for you or your family. The entire Hagen Dental team can’t wait to meet you.