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It’s too easy, especially when we’re younger, to take our teeth for granted. After all, teeth are supposed to last a lifetime, right?Smiling Female Basketball Player

But, unfortunately, many people discover—often too late—that tooth and gum problems have gotten out of control, and that they’re faced with the real possibility of losing their teeth.

How do you avoid this? The answer is simpler than you think: Brushing, flossing, and regular dental checkups.

Dental technology continues to advance, and create new ways to keep your teeth healthy and to help you recover from dental problems. But it’s still the basics—brushing, flossing, and regular checkups—that make the most difference. And they’re the least expensive.

There are even studies that show flossing can add as much as 6.4 years to your life. Research at Emory University suggests that flossing helps keep your immune system younger. The bacteria that cause gum disease trigger an inflammation response that can cause arteries to swell, triggering cardiovascular disease.

So good dental hygiene may not only help you keep your teeth for life, but it may also make your life significantly longer.

Visit CharlotteDentistry.com to get answers about your dental health or to schedule a cleaning.

Part of our ongoing series on careers in dentistry.  Charlotte Dentistry® encourages young people to consider the dental profession, and welcomes any questions you may have.Doctor talking with patient

Starting a dental practice is an exciting—and scary—time, as we remember when Charlotte Dentistry was founded some 35 years ago.  Building a practice takes an investment in time, in people, in business resources, and, especially today, in technology.

People are the first key to success.  For a new dentist to be successful, he or she first must find skilled, professional people who also build the practice by providing the proper support, patient relations, and effective office skills.  Many talented dentists fail in their own practices simply because they don’t have the support they need for the business side of the operations.  Charlotte Dentistry has been blessed with dedicated professionals on the business side of our practice (many of whom have been with us for many years).  They make it possible for our dental professionals to concentrate on giving patients the best possible care.

Investing back into the practice is the next key to success.  It’s tempting for a young dentist, who may be just getting married, starting a family, and establishing a home to take home many of the profits from the business.  But the dental professionals who succeed are the ones who put money back into their businesses to make sure they have the right equipment and people to keep the practice moving forward.  It’s an ongoing process:  Charlotte Dentistry continues to invest back into the practice, because we know our business is continually changing, and we have to keep up.

And a third—and perhaps most important—key is investing back into the patients’ and community you serve.  A new dental practice can advertise and promote (and it must), but it must also build trust with patients and people who may someday become patients.  Word of mouth for a good dental reputation is the best advertising your practice can “buy”.

You do that one person at a time. So build trusting relationships with everyone you come in contact with and your practice will grow quickly!

That’s why we still make sure we take time to answer every question that a patient may ask.  That’s why we sponsor community events, and why our staff participate in scores of different community organizations.  The people we serve have been very good to us.  We feel a responsibility to give back.  And by giving back, we make our practice that much stronger.

To any new dentist out there who’s just starting out:  We wish you the best of luck.  It’s a great way to make a living and a great way to help a lot of people.

Questions? Or just need a sounding board, contact us at “Ask The Expert”.

Part of our ongoing series on careers in dentistry.

Charlotte Dentistry® encourages young people to consider the dental profession, and welcomes any questions you may have.

We believe dentistry to be a fantastic career opportunity (in fact, experts suggest that we may have a shortage of dentists in a few years).  For the right person, dental school can be a challenging and rewarding time.Dental School

How do you prepare?

If you’ve made the decision to go to dental school, you’re already immersed in the courses you need to qualify.  But it doesn’t hurt to also prepare physically and psychologically for the challenge.

Like most professional disciplines, dental school demands great personal responsibility, and it’s designed to weed out students who aren’t willing to put in the work and focus to become a dentist.

Most dental school programs are three to four years in length.  If you’re pursing a specialty like orthodontics or surgery, there may be additional years of course work to achieve these advanced degrees.

During dental school, you’ll spend lots of time in lab courses, building skills in biomedical sciences AND in specific practice areas like dental imaging and dentures.

In your later years, you’ll begin working with patients in clinical projects under the supervision of dentists.  You’ll perform treatments like cleaning and filling.  And you’ll be taught the business aspects of a dental practice.

Once your coursework is complete, you’re ready to take the examinations to earn your license, and begin your career as a DDS or DMD. What to know the difference, click here.

Need to know more?  Feel free to use the “Ask The Expert” feature of our website to get answers.  Or check the education section of the American Dental Association website here.

Sadly, the summer is over and it’s time to return to school. There are lots of things to consider and plan for:students classes to choose, fashion selections, extracurricular activities—and what career possibilities to begin considering. Because what you do in high school does have an impact on your career choice options.

Here’s some food for thought: Have you ever thought of a career in dentistry? It’s profitable. It’s recession proof. And it can change the lives of people you treat.

Today dentistry offers many exciting opportunities such as private practice, hospital setting, teaching dentistry, or dental research. The military offers the luxury of traveling the world and helping others with their dental health.

Intrigued? Click here for more details from the ADA about dentistry as a career. And Charlotte Dentistry® welcomes questions about our profession from young people (and their parents). Make a list and bring in with your next checkup. We’ll be glad to provide answers.
Or you can visit the “Ask the Expert” page on our website to get answers. We’ll also be doing more blogs about this topic in the future, so stay tuned!

Eating disorders such as Anorexia, Bulimia or binge eating are dangerous and very hard on your body—including your dental health.

Eating disorders disrupt nutritional intake, and that has a dramatic impact on all body systems. Without proper nutrition, a patient may experience oral problems such as gums that easily bleed or chronic dry mouth, because the saliva glands can swell and not function properly.

In disorders such as bulimia, where an individual induces vomiting to get rid of food that’s been eaten, stomach acid flowing over the teeth can cause serious problems. Tooth enamel can be compromised and lost to the point where the edges of the teeth become thin and break off. Teeth can change color, shape, and length. The teeth may become extremely sensitive to hot or cold foods.

More than 10 million people in the U.S. suffer from eating disorders, with most being teen and young adult women. Eating disorders are typical a result of other issues—social, physical, or psychological—and treatment typically requires that all pertinent issues need to be addressed to help overcome the problem. Early diagnosis and treatment are important for recovery, and dentists can sometimes help by spotting issues with teeth or oral health that have been brought on by eating disorders.

If you suspect you may have an eating disorder—or if you think someone you know has an eating disorder—please seek help. These conditions can be fatal or cause permanent problems. And if you have questions,
call us at 704-376-6470 or use the“Ask The Expert” feature of our website.

It used to be that toothpaste pretty much came in one flavor—an undistinguished mint that freshened your mouth, but didn’t really get you very excited. And if you or a child in the family didn’t like the flavor—that’s too bad. This discouraged many people from brushing as often as they should.

But today, there is a surprising variety of toothpaste flavors available! In fact, the range may have gone a little too far.

In addition to the mint varieties, many toothpaste companies offer flavors like citrus and other refreshing options. There are also specialty flavors that cater to children’s tastes! As well as specialty toothpastes for Tooth Sensitivity and teeth whitening!

And if you want to go really crazy, there’s licorice flavored toothpaste, monkey banana, outrageous orange mango, pumpkin pudding, bubble gum, cola, Indian curry and a whole lot more!

Obviously some of these are way outside what most of us would consider to be good toothpaste choices, but the point is this: If you like your toothpaste, chances are you or your family members are more inclined to brush, and most likely, brush a little longer. And if you don’t like your current toothpaste, there are many other choices out there to try!

This can be a very good thing!

So it might not be a bad idea to add a little variety to your life and pick up a couple of different toothpaste flavors. You grown-ups can even try some of the kid’s choices.

Because the more fun (And Better Tasting) you have brushing, the healthier your smile can be!

If you have any questions please feel free to Ask the Experts HERE and one of our dentists will respond back ASAP.

PS: For children, the benefit of fluoride in the toothpaste is minimal (Fluoride in the water is the most important). For adults, fluoride in the toothpaste has practically no affect on tooth structure or resistance to decay. It is the action of brushing thoroughly AND flossing that prevents decay and gum disease.

It used to be that toothpaste pretty much came in one flavor—an undistinguished mint that freshened your mouth, but didn’t really get you very excited.  And if you or a child in the family didn’toothpasteflavorst like the flavor—that’s too bad.  This discouraged many people from brushing as often as they should.

But today, there is a surprising variety of toothpaste flavors available!  In fact, the range may have gone a little too far.

In addition to the mint varieties, many toothpaste companies offer flavors like citrus and other refreshing options.  There are also specialty flavors that cater to children’s tastes! As well as specialty toothpastes for Tooth Sensitivity and teeth whitening!

And if you want to go really crazy, there’s licorice flavored toothpaste, monkey banana, outrageous orange mango, pumpkin pudding, bubble gum, cola, Indian curry and a whole lot more!

Obviously some of these are way outside what most of us would consider to be good toothpaste choices, but the point is this:  If you like your toothpaste, chances are you or your family members are more inclined to brush, and most likely, brush a little longer. And if you don’t like your current toothpaste, there are many other choices out there to try!

This can be a very good thing!

So it might not be a bad idea to add a little variety to your life and pick up a couple of different toothpaste flavors.  You grown-ups can even try some of the kid’s choices.

Because the more fun (And Better Tasting) you have brushing, the healthier your smile can be!

If you have any questions please feel free to Ask the Experts HERE and one of our dentists will respond back ASAP.

PS: For children, the benefit of fluoride in the toothpaste is minimal (Fluoride in the water is the most important). For adults, fluoride in the toothpaste has practically no affect on tooth structure or resistance to decay. It is the action of brushing thoroughly AND flossing that prevents decay and gum disease.

 

Dental offices can be scary places for children, especially young ones.  And the anxiety that a child feels at a first dental visit can affect the person even as an adult, if not handled properly.

Charlotte Dentistry® takes great care to make sure our youngest patients are put at ease.  Our staff is carefully trained to help children understandSmiling Patient Wearing Braces the care they’re being given, and why it’s important.

Understanding is number 1 — we’re all uncertain about things that are unfamiliar.  So our staff practices techniques such as “tell-show-do,” where the child is told about the next step in treatment, then shown the instruments involved before proceeding.  The dentist might explain the instrument, then use it to count the child’s teeth (with the child helping), and then move on with the procedure.

Patience is key, and Our Dentists and staff are more than willing to listen to questions and concerns from youngsters, so they have a positive experience and are less hesitant about coming back in the future.

We’ve also made our offices kid-friendly, with decorations, games, and activities that make the experience more pleasant.  Our website even features cartoons for kids that encourage good dental health. Just Click HERE

We utilize a variety of techniques to make children’s dental care as comfortable as possible, and we are very experienced in using sedation for children if necessary.

To learn more, use our Ask the Expert feature. Visit our Website, or call 704.376.6470 to set an appointment.

Not yet a patient or are looking for a new Dentist? Check out our New Patient Special

Your child’s mouth is a dynamic place.

From infancy, new teeth start appearing.  And as your child grows older, baby teeth are routinely in the process of being replaced by permanent ones.  It’s an interesting—and intricate—dental ballet.Kids Smiling

But what happens if the natural pattern gets disrupted by losing a baby tooth early to decay or accident?  Because teeth are in motion, a missing baby tooth may cause a permanent tooth to come in crooked, crowding other teeth and creating problems.

That’s where space maintainers come in.  If your child loses a tooth early, the dentist may elect to install a space maintainer—a band or temporary crown attached to one side of the empty space.  This device helps keep the empty space open until the permanent tooth begins to erupt, ensuring that it has room to develop.

Installing a space maintainer is a simple procedure, as is removing it.  If your child has lost a tooth early, it’s wise to consult with your dentist to see if a maintainer may be necessary to avoid problems.

If you have questions, feel free to use the “Ask the Expert” feature or our website, or call us at any time at 704.376.6470

February is National Children’s Dental Health Month, and Charlotte Dentistry is supporting through additional educational efforts to its patients and the community.Infant Yawning

Thrush is best known as a yeast infection caused by candida fungus. This infection appears in many parts of the body including the mouth. In infants, it also causes diaper rash.

Thrush is particularly common in babies and toddlers as their immune system has not yet fully developed.  It also affects older adults and individuals with weakened immune systems.

What Causes Thrush?

The candida fungus is normally present in the mouth, skin and digestive track of a healthy body and is kept under control by other bacteria in the body. The delicate balance of bacteria can be disrupted by specific sicknesses, medications and stress.  Antibiotics and steroid medications can upset the balance of bacteria in some individuals.

What Are the Symptoms of Thrush?

Candida fungus normally develops quickly and can persist over long periods of time. Signs of thrush are white creamy raised mouth lesions on the tongue and cheeks. It is not uncommon to be found on the gums, roof of mouth, back of throat or tonsils. The lesions may bleed slightly and become painful if scraped when brushing the teeth.

How Is Thrush Diagnosed?

Dentists can diagnosis thrush during an examination of your child’s mouth. They look for white lesions on the tongue and cheeks. Redness and slight bleeding may occur when brushing and are distinctive of this infection.

Tissue from the lesions can be microscopically examined to confirm a diagnosis of candida fungus. Throat cultures, endoscopy procedures of the esophagus, stomach and intestines as well as x-rays are used to diagnosis thrush.

How Is Thrush Treated?

Anti-fungal medications are prescribed for 10 to 14 days to treat this condition. Your dentist may also encourage you to see a medical doctor as candida infections can be a symptom of other underlying health problems.

How Can Thrush Be Prevented?

Daily brushing and flossing are helpful in preventing thrush. Avoiding mouth sprays and mouthwashes that destroy the natural balance of bacteria is helpful.

Foods containing large amounts of sugar and yeast encourage candida growth. Limiting bread and sugar can be helpful.  To ward off future infections, avoid giving your child antibiotics unnecessarily. Cleaning and sterilizing pacifiers may also help. And some pediatricians advise breastfeeding mothers to let their nipples air dry between feedings to prevent thrush.

If you have specific questions, use the “Ask The Eperxt” feature on our website, and we’ll be happy to answer them for you.

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