TEETH TALK WITH DR. MARCUS GUZMAN
Brush and floss. We’ve heard it time and again but how important is it, really? It turns out that it is pretty important. A good soft bristled toothbrush is essential to get around the natural curves of the tooth and to disrupt the bacterial colonies, called plaque, that inevitably form on the tooth surface. To disrupt the plaque in between where the teeth contact, even the best toothbrusher in the world cannot clean it out without floss. It is one specific type of bacterial strain that causes tooth decay (or cavities or caries…different terms for the same thing) and it is the byproduct (acid) that they produce that causes cavities.
To be clear, cavities do not cause tooth pain when they first start to form. A simple filling is typically all that is needed to fix it. But given time to develop, the cavity will grow and eventually reach the nerve within the tooth. This is when the tooth starts to ache. Unfortunately, by the time the cavity is large enough to cause pain, root canal treatment would be needed to clean out the affected nerve and a crown placed to reinforce the integrity of the tooth now that it is broken down by decay and is devoid of its life source, the nerve.
Why is it important to see your dentist on a regular basis? In the old days, it was expected that people lose teeth as they age. We have since learned that old age has nothing to do with losing teeth and that it is possible to keep a full set of teeth to your grave with professional care with your dental professional and regular proper home care. Prevention, early diagnosis and treatment of dental and intraoral conditions can only be done by a dental professional.
It goes without saying, prevention is key. So to keep your teeth and gums in great shape, start with a comprehensive visit with your dentist and take heed of the recommendations set for you. Fix that tiny cavity before it gets big and before it starts to hurt you (both physically and financially). Brush your teeth well with an electric toothbrush. The top two brands on the market these days are Philipps Sonicare and Oral-B. Floss your teeth. Your dental professional will guide you on proper use of your toothbrush and floss. And finally, make sure you see your dentist for your semi-annual check ups and maintenance.
You’ll be happy you did.
BAYOU CITY SMILES
2313 Edwards Street Suite 150 | 713.518.1411
www.bayoucitysmiles.com | email@example.com
THE EYES HAVE IT WITH DR. LEVI CLYDE
A child’s development is of utmost importance for them to grow and thrive into healthy adults. A portion of that goes to eye care evaluations. An infant, toddler, or pre-adolescent child’s vision is usually screened by their pediatrician’s office or school nurse, who may also briefly do an undetailed examination of the health of the eye. While we trust that those results are valid, it is my recommendation that an actual eye exam is done by an eye care professional within the child’s first year. After that, I recommend an exam once more before kindergarten and then annually. Besides just the need for glasses, there are a multitude of conditions that early eye examinations are particularly crucial in diagnosing and treating.
SOME COMMON EYE PROBLEMS WE SEE WITH CHILDREN’S EYES ARE:
• “Lazy eye,” or amblyopia, is one of the most common. Amblyopia is when one eye sees much better than the other. If not evaluated and treated right away, the brain will decide that the lazy eye is no longer needed, and the child could potentially go blind in that eye indefinitely.
• Strabismus is another eye condition that is common in children. This is a misalignment of the eyes in which one eye crosses inward or moves outward. Vision therapy can usually help your child’s brain to train the eyes to align without the need for surgery.
• Binocular vision is a major section evaluated in a child’s eye exam. Binocular vision is what helps us have keen depth perception. Stereoacuity and sensory perception are also tests performed by an eye care provider.
There is also an array of systemic diseases and health conditions that can affect a child’s eyes including Neurofibromatosis, Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis and even cancer. In fact, it is through a dilated eye exam that we can often detect brain malignancies, brain lesions and brain inflammatory diseases.
With all of these factors at play, I believe it is just as important to have an eye care professional evaluate the health of your child’s eyes as it is to have routine check-ups by a pediatrician. Many Optometrists will not see pediatric patients, so be sure to ask when you call to make an appointment.
PREMIER EYE & VISION
12334 Gulf Freeway, Suite A | 713.941.1082
www.premiereyeandvision.com | firstname.lastname@example.org