Taking Care of Braces

Having braces comes with a lot of responsibility when it comes to properly taking care of them and, by extension, your teeth. Now more than ever, having good oral hygiene is important to keep your teeth healthy, disease and pain-free. If you’ve just got a set of braces implanted, or are about to, then here are a few tips for taking care of them.

Proper Cleaning

Plaque, food particles and bacteria are easily trapped in the metal frames of the braces and teeth. This means that, because of the barrier now present, flossing and brushing requires a bit more finesse then what you may be used too. When brushing with braces, hold your brush at 45-degree angle to clean around the wire and pins that make up your braces. Do this at least twice a day, or after every meal as dental professionals recommend. Removing food debris may pull on the braces, causing them to detach from the tooth, so be careful.

Flossing is a must when you have braces, as so much can get stuck in your teeth that a toothbrush won’t be able to reach. Floss once a day to ensure a healthy mouth and remove built-up plaque and food. There are many options in terms of flossing tools that work between the wires of your braces. Flossing tape and threaders are available in pharmacies or supplied by your orthodontist or dentist to make the process easier.

Foods to Avoid

Certain foods need to be avoided completely to protect the integrity of your braces from damage or detachment. Foods like popcorn, chewing gum, nuts, sticky candies, tough meats and hard foods like whole, raw fruits and vegetables, can get stuck in your braces, cause soreness in your gums and jawline, or ruin the structure entirely.

Dark coloured beverages like coffee, tea, wine and so on will leave stains on the visible tooth surface if not properly removed through brushing. Because part of your tooth is covered by the brace, that section will not be affected by staining, which will cause discolouration across the tooth once the braces are removed. Either avoid these drinks entirely or brush your teeth after consuming them.

If you’re a nail biter or make a habit of chewing on pencils and other hard materials, you’ll need to stop, as this too can damage your braces.

Regular Orthodontist Visits

You can discuss any problems you may be having or any future concerns during an orthodontic visit. This is also where your orthodontist should properly clean your teeth and adjust your braces. You’ll probably feel a tightness in your mouth or pain in your teeth after an adjustment. This is normal, as your teeth are being pulled unnaturally. The pain shouldn’t last for more than a day or two, but if it gets worse or lasts for a while, contact your orthodontist.

Regular check-ups with your orthodontist don’t replace visiting your dentist. Regular check-ups are necessary to make sure you haven’t developed any cavities or show signs of gum disease.
At Vancity Dental, our highly experienced staff dedicated to making you comfortable and relaxing during your visit. Located in Vancouver, BC, we provide treatment plans that are customized specifically for you. With services that include general cleaning, whitening, cosmetic and restorative dentistry, Invisalign, dental implants and more, call or go online at www.vancity.dental to book your appointment.

Your Child’s First Dental Appointment

Have you ever met any adult who looks forward to a dental appointment? What about a child? For most people, young or old, the thought of a masked person inserting sharp tools into your mouth is anything but appealing. At a young age, the idea is more frightening. If the first experience is unpleasant, it’s not easy to convince your little one to look forward to the next.

In some clinics, such as Vancity Dental in Vancouver, proper measures are taken to ensure your child enjoys every dental visit. Great care is taken to ensure a fun, welcoming ambiance that children take to. Below are a few helpful tips to make it easier for your child.

First Appointment

Don’t wait for the first tooth to grow before you take your child. The younger they start on dental care, the faster they will adapt. Start at six months of age, just when the first tooth is visible. Pediatric dental offices ensure that the dentist is experienced in treating kids. They have little tricks and tips up their sleeve to relax them to ensure they don’t develop fears.

Keep Them Away from Your Appointments

It may be tempting to take your kids to your appointments if there’s no babysitter available but that may not be a good idea. The noises, lights, masked doctors and unfamiliar surroundings may overwhelm your child. Children’s dental clinics are designed to appeal to kids but adult clinics can overwhelm your child. If the first dental visit is at your clinic, your child may harbour fears about their own dental appointment when the time comes.

Be Prepared for Anxiousness

Babies and toddlers get anxious. Be prepared to handle their anxiety and bring along some of their familiar, favourite toys to appease them. Few children are comfortable around strangers. Don’t yell at them to keep quiet. Gently calm them and try not to be stressed yourself. Children are quick to pick up behavioural traits and act the same way.

Practice Healthy Dental Habits

Teach your kids how to brush from a young age. Do it for them in the initial months. As soon as their motor skills are better, teach them to take over. This will start them on a good dental hygiene routine so they have a positive association with clinic appointments. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush that’s gentle on their gums and plain water to rinse.

Vancity Dental: Dental Care That Your Kids Will Look Forward to

All dentists are not alike, just as all patients are not alike. Consult one who is trained to make your child feel safe and comfortable. Vancity Dental in Vancouver is a high-quality dental clinic equipped with modern tools and technology to provide a smooth, comfortable experience.

Bring your little one to us for the first dental appointment. We are committed to offering the highest quality dental care to ensure a positive association. Our trained pediatric dental specialists offer a human touch that goes beyond your typical dental experience. Give us a try so your child grows up smiling about dental care.

If you have any questions, please contact us.

Plaque – What is it? And how to get rid of it?

People used to think that tooth loss was a natural part of growing older, but we now know that this is false. Maintaining proper oral care will keep your teeth healthy for a lifetime.

One of the quickest ways to ruin your teeth is by leaving plaque on it. These masses of germs stick to your teeth, live in your mouth, and are difficult to see. Some plaque can cause tooth decay while others can lead to gum disease. Inflamed, red or bleeding gums are some of the first signs of gum disease. The tissue holding the teeth in place start to deteriorate when gum disease is left untreated, and the teeth can eventually fall out.

It is difficult to see dental plaque unless it is stained with a dye. It is possible to stain plaque red using disclosing tablets found at drug and grocery stores. You could also use a cotton swab and food colouring to stain plaque. The areas that are stained should be brushed more to remove the plaque. You should stain your teeth regularly to make sure all plaque is being removed. Ask your dental hygienist or dentist if your cleaning technique is useful if you notice stubborn plaque on your teeth.

Floss

One of the best ways to rid your teeth of plaque is by flossing at least once each day. The surface between your teeth is difficult to clean with a toothbrush and mouthwash alone. Plaque left between teeth will eventually become tartar, which is much more difficult to remove with regular brushing and flossing. Tartar is what causes the damage that ultimately leads to tooth loss and decay.

To floss correctly, use a piece of floss that is around 15 to 18 inches long and wrap it around each index finger. Slide it between your teeth and enclose it around the side of the tooth forming a “C” shape. Scrub the side with the floss by moving it up and down and be sure to scrub both sides of the tooth. You can use Super Floss if the space between our teeth is wider than usual. It looks similar to a toothpick and can be used with one hand.

Flossing is a good predictor of health issues. Bleeding gums, for example, are a warning sign telling you there are bacteria causing harm in your mouth. This bacteria can spread quickly throughout your body through your bloodstream, causing illness and inflammation in other parts of your body. Flossing regularly will prevent your gums from bleeding. If it continues to bleed after a week of flossing, you should consult a dentist.

Waterpik

You may be tempted to turn to this device as it is easier than wrapping floss around your fingers, but it is not necessary. This irrigating tool can be hard on your gums; however, it can be handy if you have braces.

Brushing

Ideally, you should be brushing your teeth twice a day for two minutes each time. The pressure you brush with should be no more than the weight of an orange. Brushing for too long or too hard can cause more harm than good. Be sure to use toothpaste that contains fluoride as this protects the teeth from decay. Food residue provides nutrients for germs in your mouth to flourish. It is imperative to remove food residue routinely from your mouth to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria.

Vancity Dental is a complete team of professionals committed to giving you the highest quality general, restorative and cosmetic dental care located in Vancouver. Contact us for more information.

Should You Consider Cosmetic Dentistry?

The condition of your teeth has a big role in shaping your personality. Unsightly teeth can make you self-conscious. A pearly set of whites can make you flash your smile more often. Your teeth also reflect the state of your health. Disorders like diabetes and pancreatic cancer affect your gums and teeth too. If your teeth are crooked, chipped, missing, spaced too wide apart, too close together or discoloured because of lifestyle habits, you may want to consider cosmetic dentistry.

Cosmetic dentistry can not just transform your looks to build your confidence but also repair damages for better oral health. It can help you with teeth whitening, stain removal, provide shine and prevent chronic dental problems in the future. There is a range of treatment options using advanced dental technology. Below is a list of different treatments used in cosmetic dentistry.

Types of Treatment Under Cosmetic Dentistry

Cosmetic dentistry helps you in many ways:

  • Replace visible silver coloured fillings with new natural tooth-coloured fillings made with composite resin or porcelain.
  • Protect damaged or worn out teeth with porcelain dental crowns. For better aesthetics, consider ceramic crowns that blend with your natural teeth.
  • Missing teeth can be bridged with porcelain replacements.
  • Veneer can add shine to well-set teeth, adding a sparkle to your smile. They are fine, custom-made porcelain shells (similar to shells for fingernails) that slip over the surface of your teeth, concealing imperfections and discolouration. Veneer is bonded permanently over your teeth. You can continue to brush and floss as usual, just like your real teeth.
  • Dental implants can permanently replace missing teeth and also prevent tooth loss, protect the surrounding teeth, restore natural bite, and improve the contours of your face.
  • Teeth straightening products like Invisalign clear braces improve the alignment of your teeth.
  • Teeth whitening is the most common dental cosmetic procedure that helps remove discolouration

Which Cosmetic Dental Procedure is Best for You?

You need a qualified, reputed dentist to assess your dental health and suggest the right cosmetic dentistry for you. They will talk with you to understand your lifestyle habits, your history of dental treatments, your health conditions, and plan out a customized treatment that will work best. Not all dentists are certified in cosmetic dentistry. It is important to check a dentist’s credentials before you book an appointment. Find out about their years of experience in the procedure, total price and aftercare to ensure you are in good hands.

Vancity Dental Care – Committed to Highest Quality Cosmetic Dentistry

Vancity Dental offers full-service dental care and cosmetic treatments by professionals committed to the highest quality in general, restorative and cosmetic procedures in Vancouver. You benefit from human touch that goes beyond the typical dental experience. We use advanced technology that transforms your smile with a wide range of treatment options to produce natural results.

Give us a call if you are unhappy with any aspect of your teeth and discover the difference in our services and your oral health. After an initial consultation, we will provide you with further information to develop a fully customized plan.

Your smile is unique. Let cosmetic dentistry help you maximize its potential.

10 BEST Ways to Whiten your Teeth Fast And Safe

Thanks to a variety of factors, some that have nothing to do with how well a person takes care of their teeth, teeth can discolour over time and lose some of their natural radiance. Certain foods, beverages, plaque build-up, and smoking stain the enamel on the outermost layer of your teeth. While brushing and flossing can help keep some of this discolouration at bay, it does build up over time, especially if you are a coffee or tea drinker, and you may want your bright, white smile back. Here are ten ways to whiten your teeth, so they sparkle.

 

  1. Diet Changes

While changing your diet can not reverse any current staining on your teeth, it will prevent any further discolouration. Fruits and vegetables are great for keeping your teeth plaque free which helps with future discolouration. Avoiding coffee or tea and drinking juice or pop through a straw can also help.

 

  1. Oil Pulling

Oil pulling is a traditional Indian remedy for improving oral hygiene. You swish around one tablespoon of oil in your mouth, pushing and pulling the oil through your teeth. Do this for 15-20 minutes and then spit into a trash can so that the oil does not clog your pipes. Performing oil pulling can help reduce plaque and brighten your smile.

 

  1. Baking Soda

Brushing with a paste made of baking soda and water will help whiten your teeth with prolonged use. It also reduces bacteria in your mouth, which can cause further discolouration. Over time you will be able to buff surface stains away from your teeth.

 

  1. Apple Cider Vinegar

You can only use apple cider vinegar a couple of times a week, as using it more often can erode tooth enamel. Dilute it with water and swish around in your mouth for a few minutes. You do need to rinse your mouth afterward with water to protect your teeth.

 

  1. Hydrogen Peroxide

When you use hydrogen peroxide as a mouthwash, make sure that you are using a 1.5-3% solution. Using anything more strong than this can cause irritation and sensitivity. You can also mix hydrogen peroxide with baking soda to make toothpaste. Limit use to a few times per week, and you will see results in around six weeks.

 

  1. Preventative Measures

To stop teeth from becoming stained then you will want to generally avoid a few foods. Coffee, black coffee, red wine, soda, and dark coloured berries are the big ones. While you can enjoy these every so often, they do affect your teeth. You should also avoid smoking and chewing tobacco, which can significantly affect tooth colour.

 

  1. Whitening Strips

You can purchase kits at the drugstore that you can use to whiten your teeth. These are effective, but if you do not place them properly on your teeth, then you may find that you have spots where your teeth are not quite as white as other areas, especially between your teeth.

 

  1. Brushing, Flossing and Regular Cleanings

Plaque is a big culprit in turning teeth yellow. Brushing, flossing, and going to your dentist for regular cleanings will help keep plaque from building up. This is preventative as well, as keeping your teeth plaque free helps with possible discolouration in the future.  

 

  1. Professional Whitening Kits

At Vancity Dental we make at home whitening kits that are custom to you. The trays fit directly over your teeth and contain professional-strength whitening gel that is safe for at home use. You wear the trays for a couple of hours a day, or overnight, and your smile will gradually whiten. In two weeks you will have a brighter, whiter smile.

 

  1. In-Office Treatments

The fastest way to get a new bright, white smile is to have an in-office treatment at Vancity Dental. While protecting your lips and gums, we paint a professional-strength whitening gel onto your teeth and activate it with a dental laser so that the gel can penetrate your teeth with ease. This treatment takes only one day, and the results will be perfect.

 

If you are looking for teeth whitening in Vancouver, then look no further than our Vancouver dentist office. Vancity Dental has both in-office whitening as well as custom-made home whitening kits that are tailor-made just for you. If you want results, then this is your best bet over at home remedies. Professional whitening is also the safest way to go, and you will not suffer the nasty side effects that you could experience with other DIY methods. Come in or contact us today and we will take you through your options.

Three Teeth Whitening Secrets You Never Knew

A simple way to bring a more youthful look to your face is by whitening your teeth. Over time, the things you eat or drink can cause your teeth to become increasingly yellow no matter how diligent you are with brushing. As long as your gums and teeth are strong and healthy, you should be able to safely whiten your teeth. Your dentist at Vancity Dental can examine your mouth before you begin any type of whitening process to ensure it is a safe and comfortable option as your health is always the top priority.

Avoid stainers

Smoking is harmful to our health in a number of ways, but it is especially damaging to the colour of our teeth. The tobacco in cigarettes leaves a brown stain that penetrates the enamel of the tooth, making it difficult to remove with regular brushing. Coffee, tea, and wine are also known teeth-staining culprits, so keep consumption at a minimum. You could also use a straw when sipping these drinks and try not to hold it too long in your mouth while drinking. Remember, anything that can stain a white cloth can stain your teeth.

Whitening toothpaste

Using a product on a regular basis will amount to small, gradual improvements in the appearance of your teeth. Even though all toothpastes have polishing abilities, whitening toothpastes have added polishing chemicals to accelerate the process. There are also whitening rinses that can reduce surface stains on your teeth. Because these products are over-the-counter, results will be minimal and take some time to be noticeable.

A professional touch

The quickest way to a whiter smile is to have your teeth professionally whitened using an in-office laser treatment. Your dentist will apply a protective substance over your lips and gums before administering professional-strength whitening gel. The gel is then activated using a special laser that penetrates the enamel of your teeth. This treatment is ideal for patients who have a special event fast approaching and need their teeth whitened quickly. In just one visit, your teeth could lighten by several shades.

If you have a few weeks to spare, or prefer to whiten between dentist visits, you could opt for custom-made home whitening kits. This is the most convenient way to keep your teeth shiny and bright with quick results. We can supply you with a custom-fit tray specific to your unique teeth, along with professional-strength whitening gel that you can safely apply by yourself. Simply wear the trays with the gel inside for a few hours each day or even overnight and watch your smile gradually whiten. In just two weeks you will see the full effects of the treatment. How long it lasts will depend on your habits as consuming staining beverages will yellow your teeth quicker.

We can recommend how often you should whiten your teeth and which methods are best for you during a consultation based on your lifestyle. Having crowns, fillings, bondings, and anything else in your mouth will also impact which whitening approach is best for you. Expert advice is important when it comes to your health, so do not hesitate to make an appointment and talk to your dentist about your concerns.

Invisalign vs Traditional Braces

Woman with white teeth smiling.

If you need braces, then you may be thinking about whether you want to get conventional braces or Invisalign. Traditional braces are the kind of braces that everyone had seen on their friends when they were children or on your children during their youth. Most youth or teenagers will have an easier time with traditional bracket and wire braces, partly due to the fact that so many of their peers have them at the same time. If you are an adult or older teen though, then traditional braces can be daunting due to their looks. This is why Invisalign is attractive to so many people because they are barely noticeable and are removable. There are limitations on Invisalign though, and they cannot always replace conventional braces. Here are the pros and cons of traditional braces and Invisalign.

Severity

One of the biggest cons of Invisalign is that it cannot handle all orthodontic problems because it has diminished control over tooth movement by comparison to traditional braces. If you have:
Severely rotated teeth (a tooth rotated more than 20 degrees from normal position)
Large teeth spacing (more than 6 mm of combined tooth gaps per arch)
Overcrowded teeth (Less than 6 mm per arch)
Extremely tipped teeth (teeth tilted more than 45 degrees from normal)
Severe overbite or underbite
Open bites (where anterior teeth do not touch, often due to thumb sucking or tongue thrusting)
Invisalign is getting better and better though. Now, you can use elastics with Invisalign thanks to attachments to help straighten your teeth. So while Invisalign is currently more limited than conventional braces, which can do pretty much anything given the right application, in the future, it may be able to do a lot more.

Staining

If you do not take proper care of your teeth while you are wearing conventional braces, then when the brackets have finally been removed the portions of your teeth that were exposed may be stained while the tooth covered by the bracket is not. To avoid this, make sure that you are brushing your teeth properly every day and avoid drinks that stain.

Decay

If you have Invisalign, then you have to take your Invisalign off to eat or drink (like a retainer) and put it back in after (you are allowed to drink water with your Invisalign in but no other beverages). If you do not brush your teeth before doing this, though, and if you drink things like soda with your Invisalign then you could end up with tooth decay.

Cost

In most cases, conventional braces are cheaper, especially if you are not compliant with your Invisalign use (you must always wear your Invisalign and not take it out).
Ineligibility
If you have crowns, bridges, or not all of your teeth have grown in, then you cannot have removable braces.

Aesthetics

The main reason most people consider something like Invisalign, especially adults, is that no one knows you are wearing it!

If you need braces and are thinking of Invisalign for yourself, but fear that your orthodontic issues are too severe for Invisalign, then there is a third option: using both conventional braces and Invisalign. Start out in traditional braces to get your teeth to the point where, while not perfect, they can finish the correction process in Invisalign which will shorten your time in conventional braces.

If you are looking for Invisalign in Vancouver or a dentist in Vancouver BC, then look no further than Vancity Dental. Our professional staff will help you decide on the best course of orthodontic care for you, whether Invisalign or conventional braces.