Posts for: July, 2013

By Sunnyside Dentistry For Children, PC
July 26, 2013
Category: Oral Health

While she was pregnant with her son Camden Jack Cutler, 25-year-old Kristin Cavallari noticed an odd occurrence in her bathroom sink: “Every time I floss, my sink looks like I murdered somebody!” the actress and reality-TV personality exclaimed. Should we be concerned that something wicked is going on with the star of Laguna Beach and The Hills?

Before you call in the authorities, ask a periodontist: He or she will tell you that there's actually no mystery here. What Cavallari noticed is, in fact, a fairly common symptom of “pregnancy gingivitis,” a condition that affects many expectant moms in the second to eighth month of pregnancy. But why does it occur at this time?

First — just the facts: You may already know that gingivitis is the medical name for an early stage of gum disease. Its symptoms may include bad breath, bleeding gums, and soreness, redness, or tenderness of the gum tissue. Fundamentally, gum disease is caused by the buildup of harmful bacteria, or plaque, on the teeth at the gum line — but it's important to remember that, while hundreds of types of bacteria live in the mouth, only a few are harmful. A change in the environment inside the mouth — like inadequate oral hygiene, to use one example — can cause the harmful types to flourish.

But in this case, the culprit isn't necessarily poor hygiene — instead, blame it on the natural hormonal changes that take place in expectant moms. As levels of some female hormones (estrogen and/or progesterone) rise during pregnancy, changes occur in the blood vessels in the gums, which cause them to be more susceptible to the effects of bacterial toxins. The bacteria produce toxic chemicals, which in turn bring on the symptoms of gingivitis — including painful and inflamed gums that may bleed heavily when flossed.

Is pregnancy gingivits a cause for concern? Perhaps — but the condition is generally quite treatable. If you've noticed symptoms like Kristen's, the first thing you should do it consult our office. We can advise you on a variety of treatments designed to relieve the inflammation in your gums and prevent the harmful bacteria from proliferating. Of course, your oral health (and your overall health) are prime concerns during pregnancy — so don't hesitate to seek medical help if it's needed!

How did things work out with Kristen? She maintained an effective oral hygiene routine, delivered a healthy baby — and recently appeared on the cover of Dear Doctor magazine, as the winner of the “Best Celebrity Smile” contest for 2012. And looking at her smile, it's no mystery why she won.

If you would like more information about pregnancy gingivitis, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more by reading the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Expectant Mothers” and “Kristen Cavallari.”

When you think of raisins do you think healthy? When I was a child my mother always told me that raisins are known as “nature’s candy” and that they are very good for you. But have you ever thought that they can actually cause cavities?

Recent research has indicated that by the time children reach kindergarten, over 40% of children already have one or more cavities. When you look at it from a pediatric dentist’s point of view, raisins are sticky and contain a lot of sugar which may cause your child to develop cavities! Of course raisins aren’t the only cause of cavities; it is the combined effort of many other things such as juice, junk foods, candies, lack of brushing and just not visiting the dentist every 6 months.

Everything has a list of pros and cons and it is important to remember that MODERATION IS KEY! With childhood obesity on the rise, it is good to know that one of the pros of eating raisins is that they are low in fat and cholesterol too! Raisins also happen to be high in fiber, iron, potassium and some calcium.

You may be asking….what about all that sugar? Isn’t there a lot of sugar in raisins? The answer is Yes BUT raisins contain NATURAL SUGARS which is much different than refined and processed sugars in sweets.

So what’s the bottom line? Well, your child can have raisins because there are many benefits to them but do not let them overindulge! Moderation is key so too much of anything can be harmful. Make sure your child brushes and flosses their teeth after eating sticky things like raisins…and you should do the same!

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