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What Christmas drinks have the most sugar?

What Christmas drinks have the most sugar?

As winter draws closer and temperatures fall, it’s nice to have a hot drink to warm you up. At Christmas time, there’s plenty of hot drinks to choose from. At home, you can make hot chocolate or a Christmas punch. Or if you’re out, you can nip into a cafe and buy a festive drink like an eggnog latte, a spiced cappuccino or a mint mocha.

However, it’s always good to stop and think about how what we eat and drink affects our bodies. Festive drinks, for example, are often very high in sugar. This can be bad for our teeth because sugar can lead to cavities and tooth decay.

In this month’s blog post, we’ll be looking at the amount of sugar in popular Christmas drinks. This way, you can get an idea of how these drinks might potentially affect your teeth.

Starbucks’s Eggnog Latte


Nothing says “I’m American and it’s Christmas” like eggnog. But beware, because this milk-based drink is very high in sugar. If you buy Starbucks’s version, you’ll be ingesting 33.8 of sugar, which is about the same as a can of coke.

Caffe Nero’s Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate


Caffe Nero isn’t entirely innocent either. All of their hot chocolates are high in sugar. Their worst offender is their Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate, which contains 38.9 of sugar (9.3 teaspoons). If you want to look after your teeth, ask the barista of Caffe Nero for a bottle of water instead.

Greggs’s Mint Mocha


Greggs’s is known as the place to get a quick pastry or sausage roll, but when Christmas comes around, they also start selling sugary drinks. This year they’re selling  a Mint Hot Chocolate and a Mint Mocha, both of which have a whopping 46 g of sugar in them (almost 11 teaspoons of sugar). It’s probably best to skip these drinks. Your teeth will thank you.

Pret a Manger’s Mint Hot Chocolate


Just when you thought drinks couldn’t get any more sugary, Pret a Manger comes along and releases their Mint Hot Chocolate. This drink alone contains 47.9 g of sugar (11.4 teaspoons). That’s way over a day’s recommended maximum sugar intake.

Pret a Manger also offers another type of hot chocolate called a Hazelnut Hot Chocolate. But don’t think this one is any healthier though because it also contains 47.9 of sugar. How about a glass of water instead?

Conclusion

Unfortunately, many Christmas drinks sold by high street chains are high in sugar. Whether it’s hot chocolate, eggnog or a mint mocha, there’s usually a lot of sugar in them.

It might seem like there’s no escaping sugar at Christmas. After all, sugar is not only in what we drink, it’s also in what we eat at this time of year: mince pies, Christmas pudding, gingerbread men, candy canes and so on.

But there’s an easy way to cut down the amount of sugar you ingest at Christmas. That way is to drink water. By saying ‘no’ to festive drinks and ‘yes’ to more water, you’ll help ensure that your teeth stay healthy and strong all year round.

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Dry mouth – causes and treatments

Dry mouth – causes and treatments

Have you ever heard about a condition known as dry mouth? it’s a problem that affects as many as two-thirds of people at some point in their lives.

Dry mouth is a condition where your mouth doesn’t have enough saliva to keep it moist. This can make your mouth feel dry and sore. It can also cause your lips to crack. You may also feel very thirsty.

One of the dangers of dry mouth is the effect it can have on your oral health. When your mouth is dry, it tends to become acidic, which is the perfect environment for cavities and gum disease to occur. For this reason, it’s best to treat dry mouth as soon as possible.

In this blog post, we will look at dry mouth at all stages of life: childhood, adulthood and old age. After this, we’ll discuss how to treat it.

Causes of dry mouth in childhood

Dry mouth is rare in children. Even so, it is still worth discussing. Some of the causes of dry mouth in children include:

  • Certain medical conditions, such as Sjogren’s syndrome and diabetes
  • Certain medications, such as medications prescribed for mood disorders
  • Diarrhoea can temporarily cause dehydration and dry mouth

Dry mouth in adulthood

Dry mouth occurs much more frequently in adulthood than it does in childhood. The causes of dry mouth in adults include

  • Medical conditions such as Sjogren’s syndrome and diabetes
  • Medications, such as those prescribed for high blood pressure and allergies
  • Diarrhoea

As you can see, the causes of dry mouth in adulthood are much the same as the causes in childhood.

Dry mouth in old age

Older people are the demographic most likely to have dry mouth. This is because older people, in general, have more illnesses and medications than younger people.

  • Medical conditions such as Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease and diabetes
  • Medications for high blood pressure and allergies

Even though dry mouth occurs more often among older people than younger people, it should not be considered to be a normal part of ageing. Instead, there is usually an underlying cause which can be treated once discovered.

Treating dry mouth

If you suffer from dry mouth, then the best thing to do is to see a doctor for medical advice. Your doctor should help you to discover the cause of your dry mouth and plan treatment.

However, there are a few things you can do in the meantime to alleviate your symptoms.

  • Chew gum. Sugar-free gum is a great way to stimulate the production of saliva in your mouth, and what’s more, it won’t harm your teeth.
  • Drink plenty of water. If your mouth doesn’t make enough saliva, then you will need to drink plenty of water to compensate for it.
  • Avoid anything that dehydrates your mouth. Several things can dehydrate your mouth and it’s best to avoid these. They include smoking, alcohol, and coffee. So switch your morning coffee to a glass of water instead.
  • Breathe through your nose instead of your mouth. Some people have the habit of breathing through their mouth. This isn’t ideal as it can dry your mouth out. It’s best to breathe through your nose instead.

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Six tips to protect your children’s teeth this Halloween

Six tips to protect your children’s teeth this Halloween

Halloween is just around the corner. It’s a time for young witches, wizards, ghosts and monsters to embark on the annual tradition of knocking on doors and collecting sweets.

However, given the amount of sweets and chocolate that kids get at Halloween, it’s normal for parents to feel anxious about their children’s health.

We certainly don’t want to spoil the fun of Halloween and forbid children from going out and trick-or-treating. After all, Halloween is something that many children look forward to throughout the year. That said, there are a few simple things you can do to minimize the damage to your children’s teeth while still allowing them to take part in the fun. Keep reading to find out what they are.

1. Choose the right kind of sweets

Not all sweets are equal – some sweets are worse for our teeth than others. For example, sticky sweets, like gummy bears, tend to get stuck to teeth very easily. This increases the risk of cavities. For this reason, it’s best to avoid eating sticky sweets.

It’s also best to avoid sweets that stay in your mouth for a long time. Gobstoppers are an example. The longer a sweet stays inside your mouth, the more time it has to do damage to your teeth. Therefore, choose sweets that are quick to eat instead.

2. Don’t let your children snack on sweets

Some parents put all the sweets in a big bowl and let the children snack freely. However, snacking on sweets throughout the day and night is a bad idea. This is because it increases the amount of time that your teeth are exposed to sugar. For this reason, it’s best to let your children eat sweets after meals instead, as a dessert. Not only does this limit the amount of occasions for eating sweets, but there is also the added protection from the saliva produced during the meal. Saliva helps to neutralize acids and protect your teeth.

3. Give some of the sweets away

Once trick-or-treating is over, the question is, what do you do with all the sweets? One option is to give some away to friends or family members. Some dentists have even been known to offer a take-back program for sweets.

4. Provide your children with plenty of water

Water is great for your teeth because it neutralizes acidity and creates a hostile environment for bacteria. For these reasons, make sure your children have plenty of water available when they are eating their sweets.

5. Chew gum

Gum is a great thing to chew on after eating sweets. This is because chewing gum promotes the production of saliva in your mouth.

6. Make sure your children brush their teeth before going to bed

With all the excitement of Halloween, it can be easy to forget the day-to-day tasks like brushing your teeth. However, on Halloween, it’s more important to brush your teeth than ever, to protect your teeth from all the sweets.

That’s it from us this month. We hope you have a great Halloween!

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How to clean your teeth if you have braces

How to clean your teeth if you have braces

Braces are a great way to get a more beautiful smile. However, they do require a bit of extra maintenance to keep your teeth nice and clean. In this post, we’ll tell you how to keep your teeth clean when you’re wearing braces. Specifically, we’ll go over the topics of brushing, flossing and rinsing.

Brushing your teeth with braces

Brushing your teeth with braces isn’t difficult. It’s very similar to how you would brush your teeth normally. However, there are some slight differences to your brushing routine when you have braces. We’ll go over them here.

One difference is that will have to brush your teeth more often. This is because food can easily get trapped between your brackets and under your wires. If you leave the food in there, it can lead to plaque and tooth decay, and it can even damage your braces. Therefore, you may need to brush your teeth three or four times a day instead of the two times a day that is normally recommended.

Another thing to keep in mind is that braces can break if you’re not careful. The brackets can break if you apply too much pressure to them, which may mean an emergency trip to the orthodontist. So when you brush your teeth, try not to brush too hard. Use a soft circular motion instead.

What if you have Invisalign instead of braces? If this is the case, then you can simply take your Invisalign retainers out of your mouth and brush your teeth normally. Keep in mind however that you should also clean your retainers regularly by brushing them with toothpaste and a toothbrush.

Flossing

Flossing can be very difficult with braces because the wires get in the way. But don’t worry – there’s a device called a floss threader that comes in handy. To use a floss threader, pull about ten centimetres of floss through the loop of the threader and then pull the threader in between your teeth. Take the floss out of the threader and then floss your teeth normally. Repeat the process for your other teeth.

Rinsing

It’s a good idea to rinse your mouth often when you have braces. This is because rinsing is a quick and easy way to remove food particles.

To do a rinse, take a mouthful of water and swish it around inside your mouth for a few seconds. Then spit the water out into the sink.

One of the best times to rinse your mouth is before you brush your teeth. This is because a rinse can get rid of a lot of the food particles in your mouth, after which your toothbrush can remove the remaining bits of food.

Conclusion

Cleaning your teeth when you have braces doesn’t have to be difficult. The main thing is to clean your teeth a little more thoroughly than usual to ensure you dislodge any bits of food stuck in your braces.

If you’d like to talk to us about braces or any other dental issue, make an appointment with one of our dentists by speaking to our friendly reception team.

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How to put dental wax onto your braces

How to put dental wax onto your braces

A common issue with braces is that they can rub against the inside of your mouth or lips, especially in the first few weeks. This can cause sore spots to develop inside your mouth.

The best way to treat this problem is with dental wax. A little bit of wax on your braces can act as a barrier between your braces and your mouth. This will protect your mouth from abrasion.

In this post, we’ll go over everything you need to know about putting dental wax on your braces.

How to put the dental wax onto your braces

To apply dental wax to your braces, follow these five simple steps:

  1. The first step is to wash your hands with soap and water. This will prevent bringing bacteria into your mouth.
  2. The second step is to clean the area of your braces where you plan to apply the wax. Usually, this is the wires at the back of your mouth or the brackets on your front teeth. So, using a toothbrush, remove any food debris from that area.
  3. Next, dry your braces with a tissue. By drying your braces before you apply the wax, it will help the wax to stick.
  4. Next, take a pea-sized amount of wax and roll it around with your fingers to warm it up. By warming it, you soften the wax and make it easier to apply. Don’t be tempted to use too much wax though, because big pieces are liable to fall off your braces.
  5. Finally, push the ball of wax over the part of your braces that is irritating you. Rub the wax a few times to make it stick. When you remove your finger, the wax should stay stuck to your braces.

Make sure to re-apply the wax every day, or even sooner if it starts to fall off. Also, don’t use the same piece of wax for more than two days because bacteria can build up on it.

Can I leave dental wax on overnight?

The answer is yes, you can leave the wax on overnight. In fact, it’s a good idea to leave wax on while you sleep. This is because abrasion injuries often happen while you’re asleep. And don’t worry about accidentally swallowing wax during your sleep, since swallowed wax won’t cause you any harm.

Can I eat with wax on my braces?

It’s best to take the wax off before you eat. This is because food particles can easily get stuck to the wax, at which point bacteria can build up on it.

Can I brush my teeth with wax on my braces?

You should take the wax off before you brush your teeth because otherwise the wax will get stuck in the bristles of your toothbrush.

Where can I buy dental wax?

Most pharmacies sell dental wax. Also, your orthodontist will be able to supply you with some. In fact, many orthodontists give away dental wax for free after they put your braces on.

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Are there bacteria on your toothbrush?

Are there bacteria on your toothbrush?

We use our toothbrushes every day and yet we don’t usually give them a second thought. But should we pay them closer attention? Just how clean are our toothbrushes anyway?

Rather alarmingly, several studies have found that toothbrushes actually harbour quite a lot of bacteria. In this post, we’ll investigate this in more detail.

Studies into toothbrush contamination

In 2012, a study looked at the findings of ten other studies into toothbrush contamination (which is the theory that we contaminate our toothbrushes with bacteria every time we brush our teeth). The findings were conclusive: every one of the ten studies found that toothbrush contamination is actually real. And not all of the bacteria are harmless either. Some of the studies found bacteria such as e-coli, staphylococcus and herpes lying on toothbrushes.

What’s more, the more you use your toothbrush, the more contaminated it gets. So it’s a good idea to change your toothbrush every few months!

What can we do about toothbrush contamination?

While toothbrush contamination might sound alarming, there’s no need to be too concerned. For one thing, most bacteria that you’ll find on your toothbrush are harmless. For another thing, there are bacteria everywhere, not just on your toothbrush. In fact, it would be very unusual if your toothbrush didn’t contain any bacteria. So there’s no need to worry too much.

However, it’s still a good idea to change your toothbrush often. That’s because, over time, your toothbrush bristles become more splayed and worn out, which makes your them less effective at cleaning. So try to change your toothbrush every three to four months for maximum effectiveness. This will also help ensure that you always have a clean toothbrush.

Tips on how to keep your toothbrush clean

If you want to keep your toothbrush clean without having to buy a new one every week, then try leaving your toothbrush to soak in mouthwash for a few hours. Mouthwash contains a bit of alcohol which is lethal to germs. In fact, it’s been proven that mouthwash can kill most of the bacteria on a toothbrush.

Another way to keep your toothbrush clean is to rinse your mouth with mouthwash before brushing. This will reduce the number of bacteria that get transferred to your toothbrush. It’s a win-win all around – your mouth is cleaner and so is your toothbrush.

But don’t bother trying to remove germs from your toothbrush using tap water. One study has found that rinsing your toothbrush in the tap water does practically nothing to remove bacteria.

Conclusion

It’s not just a myth that toothbrushes have high levels of germs; it really is true. What’s more, every time you brush your teeth, it leaves more and more bacteria on the toothbrush.

However, there’s no need to be too alarmed. Most of the germs are harmless and they’re probably already in your mouth anyway.

Still, it’s a good idea to change your toothbrush often though – about once every three months or so should do the trick. You can also try soaking your toothbrush in mouthwash between brushings to keep it clean. This will kill the bacteria and ultimately improve your dental health.

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How does stress affect your oral health?

How does stress affect your oral health?

Do you suffer from stress? Whether it’s office politics, toddler tantrums, or a late bill notice in the post, there are lots of things that can cause stress.

Unfortunately, stress can have a damaging effect on your health. And that’s not just your physical and mental health, but your dental health too.

In this month’s post, we’ll discuss some of the effects that stress can have on your mouth and teeth. So if you suffer from stress, then don’t worry – we’ll show you some ways to mitigate its effects on your oral health.

Teeth grinding

Teeth grinding is a classic sign of stress. People who are under a lot of stress often show it by grinding their teeth at night, although some people also going to teeth during the day too.

Over time, when you grind your teeth a lot, it can wear down your enamel and lead to problems such as teeth sensitivity. Eventually, you might even need to get extensive work done to fix the damage.

It goes without saying then that teeth grinding is something to avoid. But what can you do about it? Well, the main solution is to wear a mouthguard at night. In fact, a mouthguard is a very effective way of preventing any damage to your enamel. If you feel like you could benefit from a mouth guard, then simply speak to your dentist.

Mouth sores

Did you know that you’re more likely to get mouth sores when you’re stressed? Mouth sores are small spots in your mouth that have a white centre and a red ring around them. Fortunately, they’re nothing to worry about and they often go away on their own.

Failing to take care of your teeth properly

Prolonged stress can make you feel angry, depressed and upset. When people feel like this, they no longer care as much about taking care of themselves, and this can include taking care of their teeth.

However, it’s important to brush your teeth twice a day to keep your teeth clean and healthy. Failing to do this can lead to problems such as cavities and gum disease.

So if you’re feeling stressed, do remember the importance of sticking to an oral hygiene routine. If you don’t, then it could lead to dental problems later on.

Eating unhealthy foods

Another common thing people do when they’re stressed is to turn to junk food as a source of comfort. Unfortunately, however, a lot of junk food is high in sugar and of course, sugar is bad for your teeth. So be careful as a diet high in sugary foods can easily cause cavities. Make sure to stick to foods low in sugar instead.

Conclusion

Stress can have lots of detrimental effects on your oral health. Fortunately, there’s a solution for most of them. By giving yourself a bit of TLC, you can help to eliminate most of the effects of stress on your teeth.

If you’d like to talk to a dentist about any of the topics we’ve covered today, then please don’t hesitate to make an appointment by calling one of our friendly receptionists.

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Wrinkle Reduction Now Available at Scott Arms

Wrinkle Reduction Now Available at Scott Arms

We wanted to let you know about a new line of services we are now offering at Scott Arms Dental Practice in Birmingham. We are pleased to announce that we are now offering anti-wrinkle treatment and fine line reduction.

We also offer various dermal filler/lip filler services.

It involves the use of a cosmetic drug that is primarily used to smooth fine lines and wrinkles. It can also be used to help treat excessive sweating from the underarms, and pain from grinding your teeth at night. We can also use it to reduce a ‘gummy smile’.

How anti-wrinkle injectibles work

They work by temporarily blocking the signals sent between the nerves and muscles causing the skin to become firmer and younger looking. We use multiple well-known brands which are suited for different applications and areas of your face. 

Why a dentist is more suited to supply this treatment for you?

  • 5 year undergraduate degree with years of post graduate experience in (facial anatomy, facial asymmetry, dental cosmetics and muscle movements)
  • CQC regulated service with ensures a high level of cleanliness and professionalism
  • Highly reputable dentists at an award-winning dental practice. Not all of our dentists offer these treatments, only the ones who have undergone additional training. 

Why should you have wrinkle-reduction treatment? 

  • Safe
  • Virtually pain-free
  • Fast treatment
  • Results last up to 3-4 months
  • Fight against aging while lines are not permanent
  • Little downtime

Please ring us now on 0121 357 5000 to book a consultation. There will be a £20 deposit for the consultation which comes off of your treatment. 

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When should I start taking my child to see the dentist?

When should I start taking my child to see the dentist?

Did you know that most children in the UK don’t see a dentist until they’re two or three years old? Unfortunately, this is a lot later than what most dental professionals recommend.

Ideally, children should go to the dentist within six months after their first tooth emerges. For most children, this will be around the age of 1, because children begin teething at about six months of age. However, some children start teething sooner and some start teething later, so it will depend on your baby.

Why is it important for young children to see a dentist?

Many parents believe that the age of 1 is too early to take a child to the dentist. However, it is important to take children to the dentist at an early age. This for several reasons, including:

  • The dentist can spot early signs of plaque and prevent your child from getting cavities.
  • The dentist can give you advice on how to best take care of your child’s teeth, including advice on brushing and flossing. This can set the foundation for lifelong oral health.
  • Dental visits at an early age can help make your child accustomed to going to the dentist, thereby making future visits easier.

In all, dental visits at an early age help to keep your child’s baby teeth in good health. Without regular dental visits, your child could be at risk of plaque, dental decay and even tooth loss.

Does it matter if my child lose her baby teeth prematurely?

You might wonder if it’s such a bad thing if a child loses a baby tooth due to bacterial decay – don’t all baby teeth fall out anyway when the adult teeth come in? This is true, but in fact, baby teeth are important for many reasons. These include:

  • Baby teeth help children to chew their food properly, thus helping your child to maintain good nutrition
  • Baby teeth actually help your child to learn to talk
  • Having a full set of healthy baby teeth makes it more likely that your child will have healthy, straight teeth as an adult
  • Having a full set of teeth makes children feel good about their appearance

What if my child is scared of going to the dentist?

Dental anxiety is normal in young children and thankfully there are a few things you can do to ease your child’s nerves.

  • Take your child with you to your own dental appointments. This way, he can see that daddy or mummy is comfortable in the dentist chair.
  • Read stories or watch videos with your child about dental visits. There are lots of books about dental visits available, or you can look on YouTube for fun videos targeted to children.
  • Play games with your child about dental visits. You can pretend to be the patient for example and your child can roleplay being a dentist. Have fun examining each others’ teeth so that your child will feel more at ease during a real dental examination.

Conclusion

Dental visits at an early age help to keep teeth healthy not just in childhood but also throughout adulthood too.

If you’re looking for a dentist who’s good with children, then look no further than us. We have years of experience helping children to feel confident in the dentist’s chair. Simply book an appointment by calling our reception team.

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What is black hairy tongue?

What is black hairy tongue?

This month we’re addressing a hairy problem – black hairy tongue.

Black hairy tongue might sound like something we’ve just made up, but in fact, it’s real. It’s the term used to describe a condition where the tongue temporarily turns black due to an overgrowth of bacteria in the mouth. Although the problem sounds scary, it’s actually harmless (although it might harm your dating chances).

In this post, we’ll cover black hairy tongue in more detail, paying particular attention to the causes and treatment.

What is black hairy tongue?

We all have bacteria in our mouths, and normally we can keep them in check with a good oral hygiene routine, such as brushing our teeth twice a day. However, when the bacteria grow out of control, problems can occur.

This is the case with black hairy tongue. It’s caused when bacteria on the tongue grow out of control. The bacteria build on the papillae on the tongue, which are the small bumps on the top of the tongue.

Normally, papillae fall off when they get too long (about a millimetre in length), but when there are too much bacteria on your tongue, the papillae just keep growing. The papillae can grow as long as three-quarters of an inch, which is around fifteen times their normal length. This can make the tongue look ‘hairy’, even though it’s not actually hair but the papillae.

What about the black part? Well, normally your papillae are a pinkish-white colour. However, when they grow too long, they can tend to get stuff trapped in them, such as pigments from foods and drinks. This can cause your tongue to become dyed black. However, other colours can occur too, such as yellow and green.

What are the risk factors for black hairy tongue?

Various risk factors for black hairy tongue are suspected. These include:

  • A poor oral hygiene routine (failing to brush often enough, for example)
  • Smoking
  • Alcohol
  • Drinking a lot of coffee or tea
  • Dehydration from not drinking enough water
  • Antibiotics, because they can alter the flora of bacteria in your mouth.
  • Excessive use of mouthwashes that contain astringents (such as witch hazel or menthol)

Is black hairy tongue harmful?

No, black hairy tongue is a harmless condition and it doesn’t hurt. Furthermore, it usually causes no other symptoms than a change in the tongue’s appearance. Sometimes however it has been known to cause strange tastes in the mouth and bad breath.

What is the treatment for black hairy tongue?

Luckily, the treatment for black hairy tongue is quite simple. All you have to do is follow these two easy steps:

  1. Brush your tongue twice a day with your toothbrush as part of your brushing routine. It’s a good idea to keep doing this even after your tongue is back to normal because it can prevent the problem from happening again.
  2. Rinse your mouth with warm salt water and then rinse again with plain water. Do this a few times day.

Finally, if your problem remains stubborn and won’t go away, make sure to book an appointment with your dentist.

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