Prevent Dental Disasters In Jaw Growth

Small lower jaw Class 2

If your child had this type of jaw, would you do something about it? I mean, hey, this stuff is highly genetic and runs in families, so maybe they look just like you, or your spouse, or their brother… You get the point.

Maybe that’s just how your family’s jaws have been for generations, and that’s okay. but it comes with some challenges from a functional point of view. If you don’t do something about it, then your child may end up with teeth so mismatched that it will adversely affect chewing, smiling, speaking, and even swallowing.

Most people with this much deficiency in lower jaw size end up getting surgery. That’s highly risky for permanent nerve damage, scars, and not to mention that all surgery carries the very remote possibility of death.

There might be a way to prevent this, or at least minimize the risk of surgery. Watch the video to see if it sparks some ideas… then share the video with anyone you know who deals with these kinds of choices.

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You Get What You Pay For… Mostly

Skilled labor isn't cheap

I saw this photo online and it reminded me of the heartache I’ve witnessed over and over throughout the years.

What does your dentist recommend for your children? “Let’s wait and see” is a common recommendation. Sometimes that’s the absolutely best advice in the world, but sometimes it’s the WORST. IDEA. EVER.

How are you to know? Check the internet? Ask your friends? Someone else in your family have a similar situation?

This “get what you pay for” idea also applies to the medical professions like dentists and doctors. Continue reading

If You Did This To Your Child’s Knocked Out Tooth You Would Mess Up Everything!

Avulsed tooth Pinterest infographic on knocked out teeth WRONG

One of the REAL MOM’S out there suggested I look at some of the dental advice on Pinterest. Boy, am I glad I did.

Have you ever heard the expression about learning something “by osmosis?” Well, it’s important to learn something “about” osmosis. It may make all the difference in saving your child’s healthy and happy smile.

I saw some really dangerous advise given on one of the info graphics about emergency dentistry. I screen captured only part of it, specifically NOT including the dental office as I don’t want to embarrass them. Here’s the part I grabbed (and yes, the red markings  saying WRONG are mine). Continue reading

Take a Peek Now and Then

Abscess swelling

Don’t let this happen to your child. You can almost always prevent the details of the story I’m about to share.

Many years ago I had a mother and son come into my office. The son had a VERY LARGE swollen face, much larger than the photo I’ve posted here. This can easily turn into a life-threatening emergency so we had to treat it right there. You might even be wondering why I didn’t just prescribe some antibiotics and send them home to wait until they worked? Good question.

The swelling happened to be an abscess, which is a localized collection of white blood cells (that’s what pus actually is). Prior to antibiotics, treatment of abscesses always involved draining the pus. That usually involves a scalpel or a drill (to drain it through a root canal) or both. Continue reading

Austin Toddler’s Death After Dental Visit Blamed on Anesthesia

If you have small children, PLEASE pay close attention. My heart breaks whenever I see this kind of news. Thank goodness this is very rare.

A little girl is no longer with us. She never made it home from her dental appointment a few months ago. A few measly cavities. Coroner reports are saying the anesthesia used to put her to sleep looks like the major contributor to her death, but the final report is not yet out.

Everything appears to have been done properly by a licensed children’s dentist with general anesthesia being administered by a licensed anesthesiologist. Nobody did anything wrong as far as we can tell. Continue reading

Remineralization is Worth a Try

Demineralized teeth can sometimes be remineralized.

Congratulations to Dr. Fred Guerra and KOAA 5 News for getting the word out about remineralization. It’s one of the things dentists can do to possibly prevent you having a filling.

To understand how remineralization works, you have to understand how cavities form. It’s all a microscopic process. Here’s the really short version:

  • Plaque bacterial colonies grow constantly on teeth, even if you’re an excellent brusher and flosser.
  • Anything we eat or drink that contains simple carbs also feeds the plaque bacteria.
  • Bacteria metabolize the simple carbs and give off a biproduct of acid.
  • Acid dissolves the minerals from our teeth. This is called DEmineralization.
  • Acid production continues for around 30 minutes from a single bite or sip of something containing simple carbs.
  • Remineralization naturally occurs between eating simple carbs AFTER the 30-minute-nightmare of acid production is past, but sometimes it’s not enough.
  • If we have more DEmineralization then REmineralization, then a cavity occurs.

Continue reading

The 30-Minute-Nightmare of Tooth Decay

30 minute nightmare of cavity formation

Have you ever told your kid to go brush their teeth after they’ve eaten? Please don’t do that right after they’ve eaten. They can actually do permanent damage to their teeth, little by little.

Please understand that no matter how well your child brushes their teeth, or you do it for them, there will ALWAYS be plaque remaining on the teeth. Cavities are a microscopic problem. Any simple carbohydrate can supply the food the plaque bacteria need. They, in turn, produce acid which dissolves away part of the tooth structure, whether enamel or dentin.

Although brushing and flossing are what everyone thinks of when trying to prevent cavities, what I’m about to describe is critically important to prevent cavities in the parts of teeth where brushing and flossing can never reach. Even mouthwash won’t help in these spots.

The biggest cavity prevention tool almost no one knows about is how to use the 30-Minute-Nightmare to your advantage.

Here’s a little excerpt from Chapter 3 of my book, Real Mom’s Dental Pocket Guide: Cavities. Continue reading

Personal Responsibility Act

I am responsible for myself

One patient I will never forget. His story brought tears to my eyes and a proud swelling of my heart. He was unique in so many ways, but his story just made me so proud of him. What he taught me that day is a great lesson for all of us, and one we should pass on to our kids. It even relates to their dental health for life.

This young man was around 24 years old, I believe. He had grown up attending the school of hard knocks. He was an abandoned child and he grew up in the social welfare system. Foster home after foster home was his upbringing.

He hated the lack of commitment in his life, and I mean, by his foster parents. Nobody would adopt him and make that parent-child commitment for life.

So he ended up in the streets quite frequently from the age of 11. With no supervision, he basically raised himself. We all know what that might lead to. Which of us are ready to be a parent at age 11?  Some of us aren’t ready even in our twenties. Continue reading

Cavities – Sweat The Small Stuff (Part 6 of 6)

Dentist looking in mouth

Today’s last rant in this series about cavities is about dentists and how they affect your child’s dental health. They’re not all created equal.

I know a lot of dentists and many of them think of themselves as simply “fix it” folks. They get paid for doing “procedures” and don’t get paid a thing for educating on prevention. They’d rather do a filling and get paid than teach you ALL the ways to prevent cavities (and other dental problems) for nothing.

On the flip side, the really good dentists I know are committed to the process rather than just doing “procedures.” Unfortunately, they’re in the minority. These great ones will take the time to educate you in order to minimize the procedures your child might need (fillings, extractions, braces, surgery). Continue reading