How Can Plaque Affect My Oral Health? | Tyngsboro Dentist

We are on the cusp of one of the most dangerous times in our mouth’s life – Halloween. Yes, this spooky holiday not only enjoys scaring us, but also scares our smiles if we aren’t careful. Candy is running rampant through the streets and if you aren’t careful, you can invite the cavity creeps into our mouth to wreak havoc. Their first moves? Plaque build-up.

Dental plaque is a sticky, colorless or pale, yellow film that is constantly forming on your teeth. When saliva, food and fluids combine, plaque – which contains bacteria – forms between your teeth and along the gum line. And it starts developing 4-12 hours after brushing.

Plaque is the root cause of many oral health issues. The bacteria in plaque produce acids that attack tooth enamel causing cavities. The bacteria in plaque can also cause the early stage of gum disease called gingivitis. Plaque can also contribute to bad breath and can make your teeth look dingy and yellow.

If plaque is not regularly removed from your teeth by proper brushing and flossing, it mineralizes into tartar, a hard, yellow or brown deposit that tightly adheres to the teeth and can only be removed by a dental professional. If tartar is not removed it can lead to more serious gum disease.

Now, you may be wondering how you remove plaque from your teeth before it causes harm to your smile. Fighting plaque is the most critical factor in protecting and preserving your teeth, and gums, for a lifetime. The answer is simple – practice proper dental hygiene every single day and visit your dental professional for regular check-ups. They are the only ones that can tell you if you’re developing dental issues.

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

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

An Apple a Day | Tyngsboro Dentist

They come in all sorts of colors and flavors – it’s almost impossible to choose a favorite. Some are used to bake. Some are better off as snacks dipped in peanut butter or caramel and on a stick. Yes, we are talking about apples. From infancy through adulthood, the apple is one sweet treat that we have our entire lives, in all of its various forms. Originally from Central Asia and with 7,500 varieties available around the world, apples have become world-renowned as a go-to fruit. So much so, this Saturday (September 19) is International Eat an Apple Day.

But it isn’t just the sweet snack that has captured our hearts – did you know that apples also have loads of health benefits that range from our bones to our heart, while also improving our smile? It’s true – this crispy fruit is fantastic for producing saliva, which is our natural way of keeping our mouths clean and bacteria free. Additionally, the fibers within the apple play an added role in cleaning our teeth in a way similar to a toothbrush. However, apples are a healthy snack, not a replacement for your daily dental hygiene routine. Just a natural way you can improve your smile while enjoying a tasty treat.

How will you celebrate International Eat an Apple Day? Snack on an apple with a bit of peanut butter or a slice of apple pie. In fact, because this fruit is international, why not try some German apple cake or Polish apple pancakes? Even the French and the English got in on the fun by making a popular fermented drink called cider. With so many options, you may need a week to properly celebrate!

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

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

Reduce Your Chances of Gum Disease | Tyngsboro Dentist

periodntal disease

When we go to the dentist, we cross our fingers that all of the effort we’ve put in between checkups is good enough to keep our mouths healthy. After all, a dentist is there to help keep your smile healthy, but your efforts are really what keeps things running smoothly. If you put in the work, the checkups go much smoother. If not, trouble will be afoot. One of the more common issues is developing gum disease.

While it is a common occurrence, periodontal disease, or gum disease, can cause a significant amount of unwanted damage to your oral health and hygiene. These dental damages include swelling, bleeding gums, persistent bad breath, and permanent tooth loss. If you find that you have these symptoms frequently, it’s a good idea to have a dental professional examine the developing issue in order to ensure things are okay.

The good thing is gum disease can be prevented, and it doesn’t take a whole lot of effort. To avoid having these long-term damages and prevent periodontal disease, follow these simple steps:

Brush after meals. Brushing after meals is highly effective when preventing periodontal disease because brushing allows you to remove food particles and plaque that accumulate in the mouth. Just make sure you wait a half hour after your meal.

Flossing. It may not be your favorite part of the day, but flossing is also extremely important when preventing periodontal disease because it removes any plaque buildup that cannot be removed from brushing alone.

Keep your dental appointments. Only a professional can thorough examine your teeth to determine how well your oral health is. Schedule regular appointment to ensure you are steering clear of periodontal disease.

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

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

Dental Cleaning vs. Periodontal Maintenance | Tyngsboro Dentist

Dental treatment

A typical patient thinks all dental checkups are the same but that’s completely untrue. There are various procedures used to keep your smile maintained. After all, you are the main person keeping your smile healthy, but there are some spaces even your toothbrush and floss can clean thoroughly. But don’t worry – regular dental visits will make up for these gaps in dental hygiene. Many patients have asked the question, “What is the difference between a dental cleaning (prophylaxis) and a periodontal maintenance visit?” This is a great question and it is important to understand the difference.

The medical term for a professional dental cleaning, prophylaxis, is purely a preventive measure and not a treatment for disease. Part of your dental checkup, prophylaxis is used to remove dental plaque and other irritants from the oral cavity. As these deposits build on your teeth, they form dental tartar, which contributes to most dental problems. Unfortunately, some of these deposits can’t be removed with regular brushing and flossing and it is important to have them removed by a dental professional.

The term periodontal maintenance refers to a dental cleaning performed by a dental professional that is for the treatment and maintenance of periodontal (gum) disease. Periodontal diseases range from simple gum inflammation to serious disease that results in major damage to the soft tissue and bone that support the teeth. In the worst cases, teeth are lost. Periodontal disease is a condition that cannot be cured unfortunately, but with regular visits for these more detailed dental cleanings it is a condition that is very treatable and patients with periodontal disease can keep their teeth for a lifetime.

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

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

What Is Toothpaste Anyway? | Tyngsboro Dentist

Brushing our teeth is a given. We use the toothbrush to scrub those teeth in hard-to-reach places. Without it, our dental hygiene routines would be really difficult. But have you ever wondered why we use toothpaste? I mean, the main purpose is to scrub away any debris and bacteria that can cause us harm. We don’t necessarily need anything but a brush to do that. And sure, it tastes great, which helps with our breath, but again, we can use sugar-free gum or mints to do that job. So, why toothpaste?

Just like our handy toothbrush, toothpaste helps to clean our teeth of plaque and food debris without damaging our delicate enamel because it contains fluoride, which helps to protect enamel. Some varieties have also included ingredients to reduce plaque, another dental issue that plagues all of us. So, it isn’t just a cosmetic thing to get us to brush twice a day, toothpaste is a huge part of preventive dental care and the fight against periodontal disease.

To reinforce the benefits of toothpaste, there are several ingredients used to make our preferred paste to help clean your teeth. Here is a quick rundown:

Abrasives. These help to remove stains and plaque.

Detergents. Y’know the bubbles? Detergents are what makes the toothpaste foam. It helps to dislodge food debris.

Humectants. These ingredients give the toothpaste texture and moisture.

Thickeners. It’s important for toothpaste to stay on our brushes and these thickeners help to do just that, in addition to the way it squeezes out the tube.

Preservatives, Flavoring and Coloring. This is the stuff that gives our favorite toothpaste the look and taste it has.

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

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

Celebrating the Holidays with a Glass of Red Wine | Tyngsboro Dentist

‘Tis the season for holiday festivities with our family and friends. We are brought together to catch up and exchange gifts and good tidings. Many times, these good tidings are shared with a glass of wine – or many glasses of wine. It is common knowledge that drinking red wine will eventually begin to stain your teeth, but what if we told you that red wine is good for you?

It’s true. According to research published by the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, red wine contains antimicrobial elements that were found to help kill bacteria in simulated lab tests. While the same result was produced by taking in shots of grape seed extract, red wine is much more appetizing. So, what does that mean for your teeth? Well, the bacteria that is killed is the bacteria that is giving your mouth dental issues. Let’s break it down…

Cavities, gum disease, and tooth loss are caused by the accumulation of bacteria in the mouth. When together, they form communal groups of bacteria that turn into plaque, produce acid, and are difficult to kill. In order to test this red wine theory, scientists grew cultures of mouth mimicking bacteria, and dipped them into different liquids such as red wine, alcohol-free red wine, and red wine with grape seed extract. Out of the three, red wine proved the most effective in eliminating bacteria.

So, enjoy your festivities with your glass of wine. Just remember your dental hygiene routine after you indulge to help avoid stains before you start pouring the glasses. After all, staying proactive will only improve your dental health. Happy holidays!

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

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

Subtle Changes for Your Dental Health | Tyngsboro Dentist

We all want a great smile but aren’t all lucky enough to have one. It isn’t something that is impossible – there are plenty of ways your dentist can help you get the smile you’ve always wanted. But it is maintenance that causes the hiccups. Proper brushing, flossing, and regular professional cleanings are three key components to maintaining natural tooth health. However, there are many threats to good oral health:

  • Smoking damages oral tissue causing gum recession, increases risk of oral cancer, stains teeth, and causes other long-term health risks.
  • Gum disease can spread to teeth, gums, and supporting bone, and can cause one or more teeth to be lost.
  • Obesity has been linked to an increase in oral bacteria, which contributes to increased rates of periodontal disease among obese patients.
  • Patients who regularly bite their nails are more likely to chip, crack, or cause atypical wear on their front teeth, and are statistically more likely to suffer from bruxism (tooth grinding or clenching).
  • Research shows that patients who get less than six hours of sleep per night are shown to be more likely to have periodontal disease.
  • Patients with a diet high in sugar, especially sugary drinks, are significantly more likely to suffer from tooth decay and periodontal disease.
  • Anemia can contribute to periodontal disease and the body becomes unable to push sufficient nutrients to the gums to combat infection.

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle in addition to maintaining proper oral hygiene routines will help fight off bacterial colonies that contribute to periodontal disease as well as keep gum tissue healthy to prevent gum recession.

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

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

Periodontal Disease: The Hidden Enemy | Tyngsboro Dentist

periodntal disease

We all want a bright healthy smile, but not all of us are blessed enough to have one our entire lives. In fact, if we aren’t careful, our mouths can become mysteriously invaded by bacteria. And it’s these bacteria that we need to look out for because it can cause more dental issues down the road. More dental issues equal more time in the dental chair, and no one wants that! No, the best way to prevent gum disease from developing is to keep up with your daily dental routines.

Periodontal disease, or gum disease, can cause a significant amount of unwanted damage to your oral health and hygiene. These dental damages include swelling, bleeding gums, persistent bad breath, and permanent tooth loss. The problem is, we may not know we have gum disease just by looking at our smile. This is why it is important to keep up with our dental checkups – only a dental professional can tell if you are developing an issue. So, keep up with your dental hygiene. It isn’t tough to do. Just follow these simple steps:

Brush after meals. Brushing after meals is highly effective when preventing periodontal disease because brushing allows you to remove food particles and plaque that accumulate in the mouth.

Flossing. Flossing is also extremely important when preventing periodontal disease because it removes any plaque buildup that cannot be removed from brushing alone.

Appointments. Only a professional can thorough examine your teeth to determine how well your oral health is. For this reason, schedule regular appointment to ensure you are steering clear of periodontal disease.

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

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

Why Do I Have Bad Breath? | Tyngsboro Dentist

Have you noticed friends or co-workers stand further away than necessary to talk to you? Do you receive daily offers of gum and mints? If the answer is yes to any of these questions … you probably have bad breath, also called halitosis.

The most common reason people have bad breath is decaying food particles and bacterial growth in the mouth, especially on the tongue. If you have poor oral hygiene habits, the accumulation of food and bacteria will make your breath smell bad. But gum disease and cavities can produce halitosis, and so can systemic illnesses such as diabetes, acid reflux (GERD), and sinus infections.

Keeping a daily oral hygiene routine can go a long way to prevent halitosis. Other measures you can take to prevent halitosis are:

Drink plenty of water. Water loosens and rinses away food particles and also encourages saliva production.

Chew sugar-free or gum sweetened with Xylitol. Chewing also encourages saliva production, and minty flavors help freshen breath.

Rinse with an antibacterial mouthwash. Your dental professional may have suggestions for the best over-the-counter mouthwashes and may also give you a prescription oral rinse.

Use a tongue scraper. These devices are designed to remove the bacteria and food debris that cling to your tongue’s surface.

Invest in an electric toothbrush. Studies have shown that electric toothbrushes are better at removing plaque, and since most of them are designed to turn off after a specified time, people tend to brush for a longer period.

Go to your regular checkups. Attending your regular exams with both your dentist and your medical doctor ensures your health issues will be addressed at their earliest appearance.

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

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

Toast Your Smile with Red Wine | Tyngsboro Dentist

Here we are, wrapping up one more holiday season and about to embark on a brand-new year. It’s an exciting time of year to say the least, between the events and hectic schedules. We need a moment to relax and soak in everything the season has to offer. What better time for a nice glass of wine? Not only can a glass of red wine ease some of the holiday tensions, but it can also help prevent dental issues in the future. According to research published by the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, red wine contains antimicrobial elements that were found to help kill bacteria in simulated lab tests. While the same result was produced by taking in shots of grape seed extract, who wants to drink grape seed extract when there’s red wine on the table?

Cavities, gum disease, and tooth loss are caused by the accumulation of bacteria in the mouth. When together, they form communal groups of bacteria that turn into plaque, produce acid, and are difficult to kill. In order to test this red wine theory, scientists grew cultures of mouth mimicking bacteria, and dipped them into different liquids such as red wine, alcohol-free red wine, and red wine with grape seed extract. Out of the three, red wine proved the most effective in eliminating bacteria.

While red wine has proved to protect our teeth against gum disease, keep in mind that red wine still does a great job in staining our teeth. Make sure you take a moment to practice proper dental hygiene after indulging in this adult beverage. Enjoy the holiday season!

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

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