Tag Archives: tooth decay

Pizza Is Good for Your Teeth? | Palm Harbor Dentist

When you are watching your weight, pizza is generally off the table. But what if we told you it could be good for our smiles. Don’t believe it? Well, today is National Pizza with the Works Except Anchovies Day (we didn’t make it up) – and we can’t think of a better time to rave about this dental miracle. I mean, beyond consistently making us happy with its deliciousness:

Crust. No, not going to convince you crust is healthy. But one way to fight cavity-causing bacteria is saliva production. Chewing on the crust of the pizza will increase saliva production, giving those bacteria no chance to set up shop in your mouth.

Tomato sauce. Tomatoes are acidic, which isn’t good for our tooth enamel, but it also contains vitamin C, which fights infections, including gum disease, toothaches and other dental issues. Lycopene and calcium can also help prevent oral cancer.

Cheese. We all know calcium is great for strengthening our teeth and cheese is jam-packed with it. And it is one nutrient we cannot produce naturally so don’t be afraid to say, “extra cheese, please!”

Meat. Meat contains lots of protein and protein is good for maintaining your teeth’s structure while also developing muscle/connective tissue development. So, load up on those meat toppings!

Veggies. No everything pizza is without vegetables and that is a good thing because they are not only full of fiber, but vitamin A.

Pizza may get a bad rap because of its unhealthier aspects, but by no means is it bad for you. Stack on those toppings and enjoy giving your smile the boost it craves – it’s good for your smile!

If you’re interested in learning more about the benefits of pizza, contact Dr. Larry Lieberman, DDS at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

Not All Candy Is the Same | Palm Harbor Dentist

As we approach the spookiest holiday of the year, it is important to celebrate with caution. After all, we all enjoy a handful of fun-sized candy but overdoing it can cause issues with our dental appointments. We know too many sweets can lead to cavities and tooth decay, but it is also important to celebrate with the other ghosts and goblins. Here are some basic guidelines for us to keep in mind this Halloween…

Sugar contributes to decay by providing food for bacteria that damages teeth, but simply eating candy isn’t going to cause decay. It’s the sugar remaining on the teeth long term that contributes to the decay. So, limit your time eating candy, and immediately rinse with water and/or brush as soon as possible.

Not all Halloween candy is created equal. Sour candies tend to have far more acid than sweeter candies and that acidity is more damaging to tooth enamel than plain sugar and should be avoided if possible. Candies that are sticky – such as caramels, gummies, and popcorn balls – are more likely to stick to teeth, and therefore more likely to resist brushing. Because they may get stuck on teeth, they are more likely to cause tooth decay.

While you are chowing down on sweets, make sure to balance it out with other healthier food sources. The saying holds true – too many sweets will spoil your dinner. While Halloween can be fun, and candy is typically OK, be sure to ensure that candy is enjoyed in moderation and try to avoid the overly acidic/sour and sticky/gummy candies.

If you’re interested in learning more about Halloween candy, contact Dr. Larry Lieberman, DDS at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

When Your Breath Keeps Others Away | Palm Harbor Dentist

Do you suspect you have bad breath? Believe it or not, but it may not be a lack of oral hygiene or eating too much garlic. If it’s a more recurring issue, it could be the beginning stages of gum disease. If gum disease continues untreated, it can damage the gums and jawbone. But that’s not all – many other diseases and illnesses may cause bad breath. Respiratory tract infections such as pneumonia, bronchitis, chronic sinus infections, postnasal drip, diabetes, chronic acid reflux, and liver or kidney problems, just to name a few. Treat bad breath at home by following these tips:

Practice good oral hygiene. Brush twice a day with fluoride toothpaste to remove food debris and plaque. Replace your toothbrush every 2 to 3 months or after an illness. Use floss or an interdental cleaner to remove food particles and plaque once a day. Dentures should be removed at night and cleaned thoroughly.

See your dentist at least twice a year. Having an oral exam and professional teeth cleaning is essential to detect and treat periodontal disease, dry mouth, or other problems that may be the cause of bad mouth odor.

Stay away from tobacco. Ask your dentist for tips on kicking the habit.

Drink lots of water. Chewing sugarless gum or candies containing xylitol stimulates the production of saliva, which helps wash away food particles and bacteria.

Log of the foods you eat. If you think your diet may be causing bad breath, bring the log to your dentist to review. Similarly, make a list of the medications you take. Some drugs may play a role in creating mouth odors.

If you’re interested in learning more about bad breath, contact Dr. Larry Lieberman, DDS at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

Jaw Pain and TMJ Disorder | Palm Harbor Dentist

Do you have difficulty eating because you have begun to experience jaw pain? It is important that you do not ignore it. A “bad bite” occurs when your teeth are misaligned, which causes the jaw muscles to apply extra pressure in order to compensate for the poor alignment of your teeth. This increased stress on the surface of the teeth leads to cracks and chips, and jaw pains.

When the muscle strain extends to the temporomandibular joint, located where the upper and lower jaws meet, individuals will suffer from temporomandibular disorder or TMJ.

Because it is difficult to tell what is  going on when we start to get a random pain, a dental professional will highly encourage their patients to schedule an appointment as soon as they notice they’re experiencing any of the following symptoms, as they are common indicators of TMJ:

Toothaches. Pain in multiple teeth or the jaw joint

Limited jaw movement. Difficulty when eating or speaking

Damaged dental work. Cracked, chipped or broken dental restorations

Headache. Especially when opening and closing your jaw

Ear pain. In front of or below the ear, with no other signs of ear infection

Noises “in your head”. Grinding, crunching or popping sounds

If you are experience any of the listed symptoms, it is essential to consult a dental professional about treatment options to diminish your tooth, jaw, and headaches caused by TMJ. Postponing treatment will only lead to further issues that will affect other areas. For a reliable professional near you, call Dr. Lieberman today.

If you’re interested in learning more about jaw pain, contact Dr. Larry Lieberman, DDS at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

Tooth Pain: Time for a Dentist Visit? | Palm Harbor Dentist

Many patients tend to schedule dental visits only when they have an immediate need, such as tooth pain. Unfortunately, pain is typically the body’s response to a problem, and by the time the patient feels pain, a problem that may have been easy to treat could have advanced and become much more difficult. There are many different types of dental pain, for example:

Sensitivity to hot and cold food and drink may not be a serious problem, especially if it only lasts a few moments after contact. However, it could be caused by decay, a loose filling, or an exposed tooth root due to receding gums.

A dull ache or feeling of pressure above your upper teeth may not be tooth related at all – sometimes it can be sinus congestion from a cold or flu. Dull aches could also be tooth-related, and can also be caused by grinding or clenching, which can cause significant problems to your teeth over time.

Constant pain along the gum line can be caused by periodontal disease and can be accompanied by swelling and bleeding gums. Periodontal disease should be treated quickly, as it often involves both teeth and gums, and the infection can spread causing significant health problems.

If you’re experiencing tooth pain, be sure to make an appointment to have your dentist check on the underlying cause as soon as possible. Finding and treating the cause early can save both pain and money, as most of the underlying causes of pain tend to become more expensive to fix, the longer they’re left untreated.

If you’re interested in learning more about dental pain, contact Dr. Larry Lieberman, DDS at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

Cavity Prevention 101: Palm Harbor Dentist

We all want a good report card when we go to visit the dentist. Unfortunately, we aren’t always the most responsible when it comes to a consistent dental regimen. When it gets by us, there is a high chance we will develop a cavity. A cavity occurs when plaque produces enough acid to eat through tooth enamel. The effects are usually reversible through extensive dental treatments, but there’s an easier way to deal with cavities – follow these three simple tips:

Watch your diet. People who love sugary treats are more likely to suffer from dental issues those that don’t prefer sugar will. Frequently snacking on sweets leaves sugar and starch on your teeth if not brushed afterwards, causing plaque and eventually, cavities. To minimize the risk, cut back on your sugar intake, or avoid it altogether. By making the decision to eliminate sugar from your diet, you’ll not only improve your oral health, but your health overall.

Don’t skip the dentist. Plenty of people suffer from cavities because they rarely pay a visit to their dentist. If it’s been a while since your last appointment, consider scheduling a visit ASAP. Your dentist will examine your entire mouth and give you a proper assessment of your oral health.

Make dental hygiene a priority. Make it a habit to brush your teeth every day and floss regularly. People tend to forget to floss, but it gets in spots a toothbrush can’t. If you don’t know if you’re brushing or flossing your teeth properly, ask your dentist. Gargling mouthwash will also go a long way in eliminating plaque buildup, so ask your dentist for any brands they recommend.

If you’re interested in learning more about cavity prevention, contact Dr. Larry Lieberman, DDS at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

What Type of Toothbrush Should I Choose? | Palm Harbor Dentist

We are all aware of the need to keep up our dental hygiene each day in order to keep our smiles clean and healthy. But have you ever really noticed how many different types of toothbrushes there are? Not only the manual and electric versions, but within each variation? With so many shapes, sizes and styles of toothbrushes on the market, how are we ever supposed to know which kind to buy? With an entire section dedicated to just dental care, deciding which is the best can be confusing. Here’s what you should look for:

Most dental professionals agree that a soft-bristled brush is best for removing plaque and debris from your teeth. Small-headed brushes are also preferable, since they can better reach all areas of the mouth, including hard-to-reach back teeth.

When it comes to the type of handle, shape of the head, and style of bristles, pick whatever is most comfortable for you. When it comes to aesthetics, the best toothbrush is one that fits your mouth and allows you to reach all teeth easily. For many, a powered toothbrush is a good alternative. It can do a better job of cleaning teeth, especially those with difficulties brushing or who have limited manual dexterity

When it comes to replacing your toothbrush, there is a general rule of thumb – you should replace your toothbrush when it begins to show wear, or every three months, whichever comes first. It is also very important to change toothbrushes after you’ve had a cold because the bristles can collect the germs from your cold, which can lead to reinfection.

If you’re interested in learning more about toothbrushes, contact Dr. Larry Lieberman, DDS at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

Why You Should Stay Away from Soda | Palm Harbor Dentist

It seems we drink them whenever we have a burger or a delicious slice of pizza. Americans love soda. They’re fizzy, refreshing, bubbly, they’re delicious…but if you are drinking them frequently, they’re also ruining your teeth. Drinking soda is one of the main culprits of teeth harm caused by your diet. Of course, in moderation it poses very little threat, but a steady consumption of soft drinks is one of the leading causes of tooth decay. Heavy soda consumption has also been linked to other health complications including diabetes, obesity and osteoporosis.

Sugar in soda combines with bacteria in your mouth to form acid, which attacks the teeth. Diet or “sugar-free” soda contains its own acid, which also can damage teeth. When sipping on soda all day the sugar and the acidity is sitting on your teeth, eating away at your enamel, staining your teeth, and setting off bacteria bombs.

Sugar in soda combines with bacteria in your mouth to form acid, which attacks the teeth. Diet or “sugar-free” soda contains its own acid, which also can damage teeth. Each attack lasts about 20 minutes and starts over with every sip of soda you take. These ongoing acid attacks weaken tooth enamel. Kids and teens are most susceptible to tooth decay because their tooth enamel is not fully developed. Some guidelines to avoiding tooth decay:

  • Consuming two or more servings of dairy foods
  • Drink water – Water is beneficial in more ways than one in this instance
  • Restricting other sugared beverages to occasional use

If you’re interested in learning more about the effects of soda on your teeth, contact Dr. Larry Lieberman, DDS at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

Eat Your Way to a Healthy Smile | Palm Harbor Dentist

When we treat our bodies well, it treats us well in return. But it’s not only in a general sense, a diet filled with nutrition can also help to improve and/or maintain our dental health as well. If the foods are not good for you, they can contribute to the development of gum disease; if they are, they will have the opposite effect.

Foods and drinks high in sugar and acid are typically bad for your teeth because they contribute to both tooth decay and periodontal disease, making them weaker and more vulnerable to tooth decay. Foods like celery can help brush food particles off of teeth, and they also encourage the production of saliva to cleanse the teeth. Foods high in calcium and protein (such as cheese, milk, meats, and nuts) tend to be low in sugar and key to stronger teeth by protecting tooth enamel.

In addition to the sugar and acid contents of food, patients should pay attention to how long the food is in contact with their teeth. Soft foods like peanut butter are more likely to be stuck between teeth, and drinks that are sipped throughout the day tend to stay in contact with teeth all day. In order to keep these foods from having adverse effects on your teeth, eat or drink the sugary ones in one sitting so you can brush or rinse afterwards. If a toothbrush isn’t handy, popping a stick of sugar-free gum in your mouth will create the saliva needed to rinse your teeth enough until a proper brushing is available.

If you’re interested in learning more about smile-friendly foods, contact Dr. Larry Lieberman, DDS at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

Nobody Likes Crowded Spaces | Palm Harbor Dentist

Losing you baby teeth is a natural fact of life, but how they come in depend on a few factors. And if the come in crooked, there is a way to fix the issues. Because it isn’t just a cosmetic issue – having crooked teeth can cause issues chewing, speaking and other dental issues. Today we have orthodontics to treat alignment and spacing issues, but if they are crowded, a number of different factors and the reason it developed may impact the treatment options.

One of the common causes of dental crowding is natural occurrence, where your front teeth drift slowly to the center of the mouth. In the past, some dentists believed this was caused by the presence of wisdom teeth which crowd the front teeth from the rear of the mouth. In reality, many of the problems are due to insufficient space for teeth, such as weakened support due to periodontal disease, thumb sucking, and tongue thrusting.

While many patients see crowding as a cosmetic problem, the reality is that poorly aligned teeth are at an increased risk for periodontal disease, tooth decay and TMJ problems as an irregular bite may cause strain on their jaw over time. For these reasons, fixing alignment should be looked at more than a cosmetic procedure – correcting the alignment allows the patient to have better access to brush and floss, and their bite will be more level.

If you notice crowding in your front teeth, ask your dentist about options. There are a number of treatments available and having them treated early can help prevent more serious problems from developing in the future.

If you’re interested in learning more about teeth crowding, contact Dr. Larry Lieberman, DDS at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.