Mouthwash: Is It Necessary? | Tyngsboro Dentist

Many of us believe that dental hygiene is a three-step process – brushing, flossing and rinsing. Mouthwash is not a substitute for brushing, but it does add a layer of protection to your smile while also freshening your breath. This is why it is a good idea to incorporating into your routine each day – it’s perfect for eliminating bacteria.

So, how should you use mouthwash if you choose to incorporate it into your oral hygiene routine? Here are a few tips to making the most of your daily dental hygiene experience:

Wait thirty minutes. Some people rinse their mouths with mouthwash and/or water immediately after brushing. But because toothpaste contains fluoride, it needs to set on your teeth. Using mouthwash literally rinses the all the fluoride benefits before it has a chance to strengthen your teeth. If you want to reap the full benefits of your hygiene, wait a half hour before using mouthwash.

Rinse after flossing. The point of using a mouthwash is to freshen your breath, it is also the perfect way to remove food debris you’ve just loosened by flossing. Using mouthwash or some water is the cherry on top of your smile’s health.

Use mouthwash at lunch or after other meals & snacks. A great way to utilize your mouthwash’s benefits, use it between meals. Many of us don’t carry a toothbrush around but having a travel size bit of mouthwash handy is a great way to improve your smile throughout the day. We all know that ideally brushing after each meal is ideal, but a quick rinse with mouthwash will help kill bacteria and remove food particles, preventing plaque and acid buildup in your mouth.

Call Tyngsboro dentist Dr. Yankowskas for a consultation at 978-649-7773. Also, visit our website at tyngsborocosmeticdentist.com.

Dr. James Yankowskas proudly accepts patients from Tyngsboro and all surrounding areas.

Dental Prosthesis: Three Ways to Improve Your Smile | Tyngsboro Dentist

In the quest for the perfect smile, the options can be a bit overwhelming. You and your dental professional will sit down to discuss what you would like to see in your smile, eventually finalizing a treatment plan. And depending on your particular case, a dental implant or two may be called for. And while the artificial tooth roots are all made of titanium screws, not every dental prosthesis is the same.

Dental crowns. A dental crown is a cap that fits over the top of a tooth and is made to match the color and shape of the natural tooth. To place an implant-supported crown, the natural tooth will first need to be extracted, an implant screw is placed in the jawbone and an abutment is attached. Once the implant site has healed and the bone has fused with the implant, a permanent dental crown replaces the temporary crown.

Implant-supported dental bridge. While a dental crown is a single cap, a dental bridge is made up of two dental crowns with a fake tooth or teeth between them. Implant-supported bridges are used when the natural teeth are unable to support a dental prosthesis. The placement of a dental bridge is similar to placing a dental crown, but instead two dental implants are placed.

Implant-supported denture. Dentures are artificial teeth and gums that are used to restore an entire upper or lower arch of teeth. Although dentures can be used as a removable dental prosthesis, fixed dentures used dental implants for permanent stabilization in the mouth. Placing an implant-supported denture requires the placement of at least four dental implants and the extraction of any remaining decayed or damaged teeth.

Call Tyngsboro dentist Dr. Yankowskas for a consultation at 978-649-7773. Also, visit our website at tyngsborocosmeticdentist.com.

Dr. James Yankowskas proudly accepts patients from Tyngsboro and all surrounding areas.

Foods to Eat as Your Mouth Heals | Tyngsboro Dentist

There comes a time in everyone’s life that a dental procedure needs to be done. We aren’t talking about a dental examination – those are a part of a thorough check-up. We’re talking dental procedure – something you’ll likely need some type of anesthetic to complete. And after oral surgery, your mouth is going to be very tender and will need some time to recover. But you’re hungry! Don’t worry – we have a step-by-step guide to help you eat your way back to health. After all, our smiles are in recovery mode and the goal is to avoid infection and irritation. After your procedure, the American Dental Association recommends these staples:

  • Pureed or cream soups
  • Oatmeal or cream of wheat
  • Cottage cheese
  • Soft scrambled eggs
  • Yogurt
  • Smoothies or shakes
  • Mashed potatoes

When it comes to temperature, the operative word is warm. Hot or cold foods and drinks can affect the healing process.

Eating a balanced diet with lots of protein can help you heal because it helps build and repair muscle, skin, and tissue. You can easily get lots of protein from protein powder mixed with milk or water, soup with beef or chicken broth. There are also several soft fruit and veggie options to ensure you get adequate nutrition while healing. For example, you can eat mashed avocado to get the small amount of recommended healthy fat you need per day. Peaches, kiwi, and strawberries are soft and high in vitamin C, which helps repair tissues. Keep things as low in sugar as possible to avoid gum disease and once your dentist signs off on crunchier foods, slowly introduce them back into your diet.

Call Tyngsboro dentist Dr. Yankowskas for a consultation at 978-649-7773. Also, visit our website at tyngsborocosmeticdentist.com.

Dr. James Yankowskas proudly accepts patients from Tyngsboro and all surrounding areas.

Can Diabetes Affect Your Smile? | Tyngsboro Dentist

Do you have diabetes? You aren’t alone – Diabetes affects 34.2 million Americans, and that’s just the ones that have been diagnosed. Unfortunately, diabetes doesn’t just affect our bodies, but also our smiles. Diabetic patients with poorly controlled levels are more apt to develop numerous oral complications, such as periodontal disease, salivary gland dysfunction, infection, neuropathy, and poor healing. Because this is American Diabetes Month, let’s take a look at the ways your diabetes can affect your smile:

There are two major forms of diabetes recognized, type-1 and type-2. Both are characterized by inappropriately high blood sugar levels (hyperglycemia). In type-1 diabetes, the patient cannot produce the hormone insulin, while in type-2 diabetes the patient produces insulin, but it is not used properly.

Oral changes are evident in poorly managed diabetics. These patients are at risk for numerous oral complications, such as periodontal disease, salivary gland dysfunction, infection, neuropathy, and poor healing. Their presence may serve as an early clue to the possible presence of diabetes, prompting your dentist to perform or request further testing.

Periodontal disease is a commonly observed dental problem for patients with diabetes. Nondiabetic patients can obviously develop gum disease, but for those patients with diabetes, the symptoms and progression will develop quicker and more severe.

In conclusion, we can summarize the above by citing the American Dental Association, which states that those with diabetes are more at risk for getting periodontal disease and those with periodontal disease are more likely to contract diabetes. Good hygiene and regular visits to the dentist will lower our risk for gum disease, as well as diabetes and other diseases. Keeping your blood sugar level within the normal range by proper diet and exercise will keep your body healthy and lower the risk of gum disease.

Call Tyngsboro dentist Dr. Yankowskas for a consultation at 978-649-7773. Also, visit our website at tyngsborocosmeticdentist.com.

Dr. James Yankowskas proudly accepts patients from Tyngsboro and all surrounding areas.

This Thanksgiving Thank Your Smile | Tyngsboro Dentist

Here we are… on the brink of the most thankful holiday we have on the calendar – Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving is a not only a holiday all about watching football and breaking bread with the people in your life, but a time to give thanks for everything we have. Unfortunately, there is one very important piece to our puzzle that always gets overlooked during the thanks we give – our smiles. So, what is there to do? Here are a few tips to keep in mind as you celebrate this scrumptious holiday:

Keep things short and sweet. Between the pre-meal snacks and the post-meal desserts, it’s impossible to not fall victim to grazing the entire day. The longer you allow the acids in foods to hang out in your mouth, the easier it is for cavity-causing bacteria to invade your teeth and set up camp. It’s all about moderation.

Stay hydrated. Keeping a glass of water handy will not only help with digesting all of the plethora of tasty sides but drinking plenty of water will also wash away any food debris still lingering around in your mouth. Saliva is your mouth’s natural defender against bad bacteria, so keeping your saliva production up will help prevent cavities.

Keep your dental routine. Because our teeth are so important during this delicious holiday, make sure you brush, floss and rinse the way you normally would. Scratch that, pay more attention to them. Your teeth don’t know you’re celebrating. They just know that you’re enjoying a feast. After the holidays, be sure to make an appointment for a quick dental check-up. Thanksgiving is a fantastic time to give thanks for everything in your life – don’t let your smile be the exception.

Call Tyngsboro dentist Dr. Yankowskas for a consultation at 978-649-7773. Also, visit our website at tyngsborocosmeticdentist.com.

Dr. James Yankowskas proudly accepts patients from Tyngsboro and all surrounding areas.

Why Does My Breath Stink? | Tyngsboro Dentist

Keeping your mouth clean is not only good for your health, but it is also good for your breath. As you eat food, chewing breaks food into small particles that can become stuck between teeth, around the gums, and on the tongue. As bacteria break down that food, the bacteria can release foul odors, which will be exhaled and noticeable to others. Patients with cavities caused by tooth decay are more likely to have food particles and bacterial colonies present – the cavities provide a protected space for bacteria, increasing the likelihood of odor causing bacteria being present. Sure, chewing a bit of gum after eating some garlic will mainly do the trick, but there are also some underlying circumstances that could be making your breath smell. If you find that your breath is less than lovely on a regular basis, consult your dentist – it could mean something more serious.

Like tooth-born bacteria, patients with periodontal disease are likely to have bad breath. Periodontal disease is an infection within the gums, typically caused by poor oral hygiene. As plaque and tartar build up against the gums, bacterial colonies build beneath the surface of the gums, creating large colonies that not only produce foul odors, but also damage gum and bone tissue, and could potentially cause severe dental issues such as tooth loss.

Because the root cause of bad breath is often bacteria, an antiseptic mouthwash can often help mitigate bad breath – at least for a while. However, it’s important to remember that mouthwash doesn’t necessarily remove all bacteria; it only kills some bacteria for a short period of time.

Call Tyngsboro dentist Dr. Yankowskas for a consultation at 978-649-7773. Also, visit our website at tyngsborocosmeticdentist.com.

Dr. James Yankowskas proudly accepts patients from Tyngsboro and all surrounding areas.

When Your Smile Needs to Go to Rehab | Tyngsboro Dentist

Because there are so many types of dental issues, dental professionals have dedicated their careers to developing various procedures to repair said issues. And while we aren’t all born with a naturally brilliant smile, all is not lost. It may be just a simple whitening procedure or a round of braces, to something more extensive like a total smile makeover.

If most—or all—of your teeth are crooked, broken or decayed, you may have given up hope for a healthy, beautiful smile. For many, it causes issues with self-esteem, others day-to-day functions like eating or speaking. A total smile makeover, also known as full-mouth rehabilitation combines the best technology, materials and techniques with decades of advanced clinical training and experience.

People of all ages seek full-mouth rehabilitation for many reasons, including inherited dental problems, such as a bad bite, traumatic injuries from car accidents or sports, or chronic illnesses. Tooth-grinding, acid reflux, bulimia, and drug and alcohol abuse may also inflict severe damage on the teeth. Full-mouth rehabilitation can be used to solve a variety of dental problems, including:

  • pain or soreness in the teeth, gums or jaw
  • missing teeth
  • loose teeth
  • decay in most or all teeth
  • bad breath
  • severely worn, shortened teeth
  • severe erosion of the enamel
  • extremely sensitive teeth
  • teeth that are cracked, chipped or broken
  • crowns or bridges that crack, chip or break
  • an overbite or protruding jaw
  • crooked or misshapen teeth
  • discolored teeth
  • a narrow or a “gummy” smile
  • ear congestion and/or dizziness
  • headaches or migraines

If you’re ready to get the smile that you’ve always dreamed of, make an appointment to see your dental professional as soon as possible to discuss your options.

Call Tyngsboro dentist Dr. Yankowskas for a consultation at 978-649-7773. Also, visit our website at tyngsborocosmeticdentist.com.

Dr. James Yankowskas proudly accepts patients from Tyngsboro and all surrounding areas.

Veneers vs. Straightening: Which to Choose? | Tyngsboro Dentist

Having the best smile we possibly can is one of the main focuses we have when going to the dentist. Sure, our dental health is important, but people see our smile – we need a nice one. Thankfully, there are loads of dental procedures available to improve your smile, and each has a focus, so the procedure chosen is on a case-by-case basis. Together, you and your dental professional will discuss a treatment plan based on your wishes and your mouth’s health. Yes, your dental efforts every day will dictate what types of procedures you are a good candidate for.

When it comes to straightening, many patients have asked about the benefits of veneers when compared to Invisalign. Both will straighten your smile, but they are very different procedures. While veneers are certainly an option for improving your smile, they only cover up certain dental imperfections, rather than correct them.  This means that some existing periodontal problems could still remain.

Applied to the front side of the teeth only, veneers also require the removal of the surface enamel of each tooth – an irreversible procedure.  Often considered a quick fix, veneers typically need to be replaced every 5 to 10 years – this can become very expensive in the long run.  Coffee, tea and red wine need to be avoided to prevent discoloration, and care must be taken to prevent chipping or breaking the veneer. So, while the surface look of the teeth may improve with veneers, the underlying tooth and gum problems could still exist.

Of course, there’s always the option of not seeking treatment at all.  Ultimately, the choice is yours, but do keep in mind that, if left untreated, many orthodontic issues can often lead to more serious dental and health issues.

Call Tyngsboro dentist Dr. Yankowskas for a consultation at 978-649-7773. Also, visit our website at tyngsborocosmeticdentist.com.

Dr. James Yankowskas proudly accepts patients from Tyngsboro and all surrounding areas.

A Is for Autumn and Apples | Tyngsboro Dentist

Now that we are smack dab in the middle of Autumn, I think that it’s time to talk about one of our mouth’s very best friends – the apple. Autumn is the time of year nit begins to cool down and the apple is the centerpiece of many of our autumnal celebrations. The leaves change from bright, vivid greens to more rust-like, “apple-y” colorations and we trade out our lemonades for apple cider. ’Tis the season of the apple and we are here to help you celebrate this tooth-friendly food properly.

Apples aren’t only a fruit used to sweet talk the teachers or keep away the doctors. They also help keep our smiles strong and bright. Apples are naturally full of vitamins A and C, key to keeping our gums nice and healthy. The small amount of acid and the crunchiness of the skin that acts as an astringent on your teeth when you bite into it. Scrubbing your teeth as you chew, the juiciness of the apple causes you to produce saliva. The more saliva you have going on, the less chance the bacteria has to bury itself in your mouth, wreaking havoc.

Just because the apple is now our favorite go-to snack, please remember that these sweet fruits do have sugar content, so be sure to brush afterwards to make sure you get rid of the loosened plaque left behind by your apple. If you don’t have a toothbrush handy, do a quick rinse with some water.

So, stock up on those amazing apples. Not only are they great at keeping us healthy, they are also great in lots of healthy autumnal recipes!

Call Tyngsboro dentist Dr. Yankowskas for a consultation at 978-649-7773. Also, visit our website at tyngsborocosmeticdentist.com.

Dr. James Yankowskas proudly accepts patients from Tyngsboro and all surrounding areas.

Straightening Your Smile with Invisalign Aligners | Tyngsboro Dentist

When our secondary set of teeth come in and turn out to be crooked, there are a variety of ways you can straighten things out with braces. But if you are older and have held off getting things done, or you have an active lifestyle, wearing the traditional silver braces can be an issue. The good thing is, now there is Invisalign, which straightens your teeth in a very discreet way.

An Invisalign treatment consists of a series of nearly invisible, removable aligners that you change every two weeks for the next set of aligners. Each aligner is individually manufactured for your teeth, and your teeth only. As you replace each aligner, your teeth will move – little by little, week by week – until they have straightened to the final position prescribed.

Your dental professional will show you a virtual treatment plan generated by Align Technology’s unique ClinCheck® software shows the series of movements your teeth will go through over the course of the treatment. This allows you to see upfront what your teeth are expected to look like at the end of the treatment. From the results of the ClinCheck software, your custom-made, clear aligners are produced especially for you.

If you’re ready for a smile that transforms your appearance, Invisalign is your answer. Although there are many choices out there, no other treatment works as comfortably as Invisalign. And while you will have a few tweaks to your daily life, it is absolutely the best way to transform your smile without interfering with your day-to-day life. It doesn’t get easier than that.

Call Tyngsboro dentist Dr. Yankowskas for a consultation at 978-649-7773. Also, visit our website at tyngsborocosmeticdentist.com.

Dr. James Yankowskas proudly accepts patients from Tyngsboro and all surrounding areas.