Archive for October, 2011

Geographic Tongue

Geographic Tongue is an inflammatory condition of the tongue affecting approximately 2 percent of the population. It is characterized by discolored regions of taste buds or sometimes even cracks in the tongue. The condition manifests after eating any of a range of foods, during times of stress, illness, or hormonal changes in women. In a tongue affected by geographic tongue, red patches on the surface of the tongue are bordered by grayish white. The small patches may disappear and reappear in a short period of time and change in shape and size. It is not common for the condition to cause pain, it may cause a burning or stinging sensation, especially after contact with certain foods. Foods that sometimes cause irritation include tomato, eggplant, walnuts, sharp cheeses, spicy foods, sour foods, mint, candy, and citrus. Geographic tongue may also cause numbness. Chemicals like mouth washes or teeth whiteners can also aggravate the condition. If you think you might have geographic tongue consult your dentist.

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Space Maintainers

The transition from primary teeth to adult teeth deserves a great deal of attention. Your child’s future smile depends on the growth and health of their teeth from the very beginning. A space maintainer might be vital to your child’s dental health. If your child loses a baby tooth too early through decay or injury, there could be complications. The child’s other teeth could shift and begin to fill the vacant space. When your child’s permanent teeth are ready to emerge, there’s might not be enough room for them. The result is crooked or crowded teeth and difficulties with chewing or speaking. To prevent that, your dentist could insert a space maintainer to hold the spot left by the lost tooth until the permanent tooth emerges. The space maintainer might be a band or a temporary crown attached to one side of the vacant space. Later, as the permanent tooth emerges, your dentist removes the device. And presto! Your child is ready for a lifetime of smiles.

Updated Food Pyramid

The USDA recently updated the Food guide pyramid and renamed it MyPlate. Fruits and vegetables take up half the plate, and grains and protein make up the other half. It is recommended by the Foodplate that people consume two to three servings of vegetables in a day whether they are fresh, frozen, canned, or juiced. It is best to consume two to four servings of fruit in a day, they can be prepared in any way. The Foodplate advises that fats can be consumed sparingly and that healthy fats can be found in nuts, fish, and avocados. For adults, three cups of dairy products are recommended per day, and two to three servings of protein per day. Proteins can be found in meats, beans, nuts, and eggs. Remember, one serving of meat is considered to be only 4 ounces, which is about the size of a deck of cards. Keep track of what you’re eating to optimize your health. To learn more about the food Plate, visit ChooseMyplate.gov.

Does a Smaller Waist Necessarily Mean Bad Breath?

Many people wanting to slim down are jumping on the low-carbohydrate diet trend in an attempt to lose weight. However, as dieters shed pounds, many are saying goodbye to carbs and hello to bad breath. Low-carb diets work by limiting the amount of carbohydrates ingested, which allows the body to burn stored fat instead of carbohydrates. When the body burns fat as fuel, chemicals called ketones are produced. These ketones are released in the breath and urine and may result in bad breath. Ketones aren’t the only bad breath culprit for this diet. The types of foods ingested also play a role. To help keep bad breath away, drink plenty of water. Water helps to wash away germs in the mouth and can help dilute the concentration of ketones. Chew sugarless gum. It can help to keep bad breath away and helps produce saliva which can help rinse food particles from the mouth. Keep a toothbrush handy after meals. Whether at the office or at home, it is important to keep your mouth healthy and odor free.