Dental Care Monthly Updates

Oral Hygiene Tips & More

We do our best to keep you informed on how to maintain a beautiful smile!


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The majority of our patients at Belvedere Family Dentistry & Orthodontics would love to be able to flash a bright, perfectly straight smile everyday, but many do not want to go through an orthodontic journey for aesthetic reasons. We offer an effective, more subtle alternative to traditional braces and metal appliances through Invisalign treatment. But how can you determine if Invisalign is the best solution for your individual needs? Our experts have broken down that answer for you below!

Can Invisalign Successfully Straighten My Teeth?

Invisalign treatment has successfully fixed crooked teeth, mild overbites and underbites, cross bites, wide gaps between teeth and overcrowded teeth in cases across the globe and within this office! It can be used on both baby and permanent teeth to provide desirable results. Through a precise digital scan and personalized treatment plan, these clear, custom-fitted trays gently and gradually shift your teeth into your desired position, not only providing an aesthetically pleasing smile but also improving your overall health.

In some extreme cases, Invisalign is not able to push teeth into place in a safe and efficient manner. If your teeth are severely rotated (defined as more than 20 degrees) or if misalignment roots from a skeletal issue in your jawbone, it is likely that traditional braces or other more serious procedures will be necessary to successfully treat your case. Our dental team in uptown Charlotte is here to help you determine the best path for your individual orthodontic journey.

Am I A Good Candidate For Invisalign Treatment?

The ideal age for Invisalign treatment trends towards older teenagers and adults. Typically within this age range most of your teeth have fully grown in and the bones and muscles have matured to a point that development will not hinder the straightening process. It also takes a good deal of dedication and responsibility to successfully complete your Invisalign treatment, which can be lacking in younger children. We recommend that you wear your clear aligners 22 out of 24 hours every day, removing them to eat and drink anything besides water. You must also be sure to keep your aligners clean and not misplace them as you are removing them for each meal.

Of course, there are many more individual pieces that can be big determining factors for Invisalign or other orthodontic services. Call our front desk at 704-927-5499 or schedule online to book your consultation today and get help determining whether Invisalign treatment is right for you!

 


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We all know drinking enough water is good for our health. And when you’re feeling parched, there’s nothing better than a tall drink of ice-cold water to dampen that dry mouth of yours. But what do you do when you find yourself constantly needing to wet your whistle?

There are numerous reasons you could be suffering from dry mouth. Below are the top five.

  1. Physiologic: Sometimes having a dry mouth is just a normal part of life. Temporary anxiety, open-mouthed breathing, mild dehydration, menopause, pregnancy, and decreased saliva due to sleep are all normal causes of dry mouth.
  2. Prescription medication: Sixty-three percent of the top 200 most commonly prescribed drugs in the U.S. are known to cause dry mouth. And the higher the number of medications a person takes, the higher the chance of dry mouth. That’s why as we age, we tend to experience more instances of dry mouth. It’s not necessarily age-related, but our consumption of medication may cause this side effect.
  3. Habitual use of alcohol and tobacco: Use of any of these products will dry out the oral cavity. Please drink in moderation, and make sure to up your water intake when you imbibe. As for tobacco, we always recommend quitting as soon as possible.
  4. Chronic Disease: Diabetes, Sjogren’s disease, Sarcoidosis, Hepatitic C can all cause dry mouth. Psychogenic or Idiopathic When symptoms are present without an identifiable cause (idiopathic), or because of psychological causes (psychogenic), they can be difficult to diagnose.

If you find yourself with a persistent, unidentifiable case of dry mouth, you should make an appointment with our dental professionals at Belvedere Family Dentistry. Figuring out which one is causing your dry mouth is so important because a dry mouth has a big effect on your dental health. Saliva is so important for swishing away bacteria. The dryer the mouth, the more prone you are to cavities, bad breath, and gingivitis. We recommend visiting us in uptown Charlotte or your primary care doctor for a consultation on why you may be experiencing a dry mouth. Call us at 704-927-5499 or use our easy online scheduler HERE.


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Some of the most common questions our patients ask at Belvedere Family Dentistry have to do with dental x-rays: Are they safe? Why do I or my kids need them? How often should I get them? These are great questions (and we love how much you prioritize your oral health). The answers can get complex quickly, so we’ll do our best to cover the basics for you in this post.

Let’s start with the most important question—safety. Both the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) and the American Dental Association (ADA) test dental x-rays to make sure they’re safe for patients of all ages. These governing bodies revise their guidelines when any advances in science and technology provide new methods to reduce exposure. Thanks to faster film speeds, digital X-rays, and protective aprons and thyroid collars, the dental X-rays we provide today are far superior to those taken even just a few years ago.

This applies to children, too. Today’s X-rays are so safe, in fact, that the amount of radiation a child is exposed to through dental X-rays of their back molars is roughly equivalent to the amount of radiation they are exposed to in the environment on a daily basis.

Why Do You Need X-Rays?

Dental X-rays, also called radiographs, help your dentist spot conditions, like cavities, tooth misalignment, and abscesses, that they can’t see through a visual examination. X-rays are especially important for children because they are generally more susceptible to tooth decay than adults. The benefits of dental X-rays, which include diagnosing decay, pathology, or any abnormalities, far outweigh the risks of exposure to this minimal dose of radiation.

How Often Should I Get Them?

Your dental X-ray schedule depends on a number of factors, including your medical and dental history. Generally, patients without a history of cavities or dental disease are recommended to undergo one set of X-rays every two to three years. The best way to reduce the number of X-rays you need in your visits with us is to continue following a good oral hygiene regimen at home in between your regular, bi-annual appointments.

Wondering When You’re Due for X-Rays?

Call our front office at Belvedere Family Dentistry & Orthodontics today at 704-927-5499 to ask a member of our team about your dental history! We will be happy to help you schedule your next appointment if you are overdue, or if you know you have not had dental x-rays taken in a while you can quickly schedule online with us HERE.


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Are There Really Benefits of MouthWash?

Lots of our patients have questions surrounding mouthwash and the real benefits or disadvantages of using it regularly. Here’s our truth: mouthwash makes your breath smell good, but it could never take the place of regular brushing and flossing. We’ve put together all the facts for you to decide whether you want to continue rinsing with your mouthwash.

A lot of brands will claim that their mouthwash cures all kinds of dental issues, and many may actually aid some of your oral hygiene problems, but by themselves they cannot keep your oral health on its A game.

The Benefits of Using Mouthwash

The benefit you receive from using mouthwash depends on the mouthwash’s active ingredient. Some brands include low concentrations of hydrogen peroxide, which can help whiten your teeth with minimal bleaching so your gums will not be harmed. A mouthwash based with alcohol is helpful and very effective in killing germs, helping to fight against plaque build up. One downside to an alcohol base can be abnormal dry mouth. Lastly, fluoride based mouthwash brands can prevent cavities during a full minute rinse (as the label instructs for best effects.)

What Will Happen If You Quit Using Mouthwash?

The most beneficial and important steps you can take to maintain good oral health are thoroughly brushing and flossing your teeth daily as well as attending your regular professional cleanings with us at Belvedere Family Dentistry. Outside of those methods, mouthwash is really important on a case by case basis. If you are prone to cavities or periodontal disease, mouthwash could be a good option for you. Call us today at 704-927-5499 to talk to one of our dental professionals about the best cleaning regimen for your individual oral health! If you would prefer an in person evaluation, please take just one minute to use our easy online appointment scheduler to book your next visit HERE!


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Imagine it’s still winter … you’re standing at the door, ready to brave the cold. You’re layered-up with three shirts and a sweatshirt, your heavy winter coat, and two layers of socks underneath your waterproof winter boots. Then you’ve got those awesome jeans with the flannel on the inside, your comfy hat, scarf, and gloves. You’re set! But wait. As you step toward the door, you suddenly realize you have an itch … and it’s deep down … buried beneath all those layers. And, try as you may, every attempt to reach that bugger-of-an-itch fails. Defeated, you realize the only relief you’re ever gonna’ get is to remove each one of those layers. Where are we going with this?!

The Tongue

We’re going inside your mouth, of course, to your tongue – this is a dental article, after all! Because whether you know it or not, like you in the wintertime, your tongue is also “all covered up” – buried beneath layers of bacteria, fungi, and food residue that can inhibit your ability to taste, let alone cause your tongue to appear various shades of yellow, white, or green! Remove the bacteria, though, and your food will once again directly interact with those taste buds, and return to its natural hue. So how does one do that? With a tongue scraper, of course!

WHAT is a tongue scraper?

A tongue scraper is a U-shaped device designed to “scrape” the top layer of scum from your tongue. They have been in use since ancient times, and have been made of everything from wood to whalebone. Nowadays, they are made of more hygienic material, and come in a variety of shapes, sizes, designs and colors.

WHY use a tongue scraper?

The residue on your tongue includes things like the cavity-inducing Streptococcus mutans bacterium, fungi, rotting food (that’s not good), and what’s referred to as “volatile sulfur compounds.” In other words, sulfur – that “rotting egg smell.” Talk about ew! So, as you can see, there are several reasons why you’d want to get rid of this gunk in your mouth. Let’s tackle them one by one:

  • Reduce bad breath: ‘nuff said!
  • Reduce your risk of periodontal disease and cavities: Bad bacteria contribute to plaque and tartar on teeth, making them more susceptible to cavities. Bacteria build-up can also lead to inflammation of gum tissue (gingivitis). If left untreated, gingivitis can lead to periodontal disease, which means a more expensive dental visit (plus other unwanted consequences!). Speaking of avoiding an expensive dental visit, when was the last time you came in to see us? Come see us now if it’s been awhile, by calling in at 704-927-5499.
  • Make room for good bacteria
  • Prevent heart disease? While the debate is still up in the air, some studies suggest there could be a correlation between gum disease and heart disease.

HOW does one use a tongue scraper?

In general, make sure to rinse your tongue scraper before and after use. Apply the tongue scraper to the back of your tongue and drag it forward. Then, rinse and repeat. Make sure to get the sides of your tongue as well, not just the center! Make sure not to press too hard or you can cause yourself to bleed. And, if you’re wondering if you should scrape your tongue while recovering from a dental procedure, that’s a good question … ask your dentist for the best advice particular to your situation. Still not sure how this thing really works? The next time you’re in ask Dr. Bansch for a quick tutorial!

WHERE do I buy one?

Tongue scrapers are relatively inexpensive, and can be found at any local drugstore. It doesn’t matter the material, color, or brand – just find the one you like and get scraping!


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It’s National Heart Health Month! Did you know that oral health can be directly linked to heart health? Delta Dental has recently provided evidence that gum disease in both moderate and advanced stages puts you at a greater risk for developing heart disease than you be with healthy gums. Regular oral screenings can also help point doctors to a variety of other diseases that may start with warning signs in your mouth.

How Does Your Oral Health Connect to Your Heart?

Every system in your body is connected. Just like consuming food through your mouth makes its way to your stomach, any bacteria or germs that start off in your mouth can fairly easily be spread throughout the rest of your body through your blood stream.Mayo Clinic and theAmerican Heart Association have been able to show that this bacteria can actually attach itself to any already damaged areas when it gets to your heart. The attached bacteria can then lead to further inflammation, which has been linked to clogged arteries and even strokes.

Are You At Risk?

People who suffer from chronic gum diseases like gingivitis or advanced periodontitis are at the highest risk for developing heart disease as a direct cause of poor oral health and dental hygiene. It is important to know that plaque buildup from skipping just one brushing or flossing session a week can easily add up to create issues with your gums.

  • Common Symptoms and Warning Signs
  • Red or swollen gums
  • Soreness and discomfort in your gums
  • Excessive bleeding when your floss or brush your teeth
  • Newfound misalignment or the feeling of teeth moving away from each other
  • Receding gum lines

How To Prevent Heart and Oral Diseases

Keeping up with your regular cleanings and examinations here at Belvedere Family Dentistry & Orthodontics is extremely important in protecting yourself against harmful bacteria and diseases. Call our front desk today at 704-927-5499 to schedule your next appointment with us! If you have any concerns surrounding your oral health, and gum diseases especially, be sure to talk to one of our dentist and explain all of your symptoms.

Read this article by Tracey Sandilands, published for Colgate, to learn more about how your heart and mouth are related and what you should do to prevent disease from growing.


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Seeing some red in the sink after brushing or flossing may raise an eyebrow or two. It may seem like your gums are bleeding for no reason. But before you venture down the rabbit hole of what-ifs, consider these common causes of bleeding gums.

Common Causes of Bleeding Gums

  • Vigorous Toothbrushing: The extra oomph you’ve put into your brushing since your most recent visit may be the first place to look. Instead of brushing with the vigor you’d use while scrubbing a stack of plates after Thanksgiving, aim for gentle and patient: place the bristles along your gums at a 45-degree angle, and gently brush two to three teeth at a time.
  • Inadequate or Forceful Flossing: Changing your flossing routine can also cause your gums to bleed. If you’ve returned to regular flossing after a little hiatus or if you’re flossing more forcefully than usual, bleeding is common. Remember to floss daily and with ease.
  • Medication: Some over-the-counter medications, including aspirin, as well as prescription drugs, like blood thinners, may lead to gum bleeding. Be sure to let us know which medications you’re taking, and keep us in the loop if you and your healthcare provider change your medications.
  • Vitamin Deficiency: A deficiency in vitamins is a common factor in gum bleeding. Vitamin A helps form your teeth and protects your mouth’s membranes; vitamin C helps maintain the health of your teeth and gums; and vitamin K ensures your blood clots. If you’ve upped your hygiene game but still spot blood after brushing, try adding more vitamin-rich foods to your diet.
  • Gingivitis and Periodontitis: Gum bleeding, as well as swelling and tenderness, is a common symptom of gingivitis and periodontitis. Often due to poor oral hygiene, both gingivitis and the more-serious periodontitis do require treatment.

When It’s Time for a Visit

If you do make these suggested changes to your oral health routine but the bleeding doesn’t improve within 10 days, it’s best to come in to Belvedere Family Dentistry for a visit. Give us a call today at 704-927-5499 or schedule your next appointment online now!


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Many things affect the cleanliness of our teeth from what we eat to how often we brush them. Things like the length of time you brush your teeth and your brushing technique also affect how clean your teeth are overall. Were you aware that the type of toothbrush you use also has a direct effect on how well you remove plaque from your teeth while brushing? Many people wouldn’t think about what type of toothbrush they use makes a difference or is a big deal, but they are wrong. Electric toothbrushes are better at plaque removal compared to your standard manual toothbrush. Electric toothbrushes are also easier to use than a standard manual toothbrush and for this reason, many people have switched to electric toothbrushes.

 

Different types of toothbrushes require different techniques to correctly clean your teeth. A standard manual toothbrush requires you to manually provide all of the brushing motion. You must gently move your toothbrush in a circular motion back and forth around your teeth. With an electric toothbrush, the toothbrush does the brushing motion for you by gently spinning in place which allows the user to gently hold the toothbrush against each tooth and allow it to clean the tooth for them. All you are required to do with an electric toothbrush is gently guide it from one tooth to another after cleaning each of them.

 

One of the most common and largest problems people face while using a standard toothbrush is not brushing for a full two minutes with the correct brushing technique. The end result is a mouth full of teeth that are not as clean as they ideally could be. Many electric toothbrushes, however, have a two-minute timer built in. Using this timer will help to remind you to brush your teeth for the full recommended amount of time that is required to keep each of your teeth as clean as possible. Electric toothbrushes are also often built to help protect your gums as well as clean them. Many electric toothbrushes have a pressure sensor that is built right in that will notify you if you are pushing or brushing too hard.

 

Electric toothbrushes can also be a great way to get your kids more interested in brushing their teeth and overall oral health care. Not only are electric toothbrushes easier to use which may result in your kids enjoying brushing their teeth more, but many toothbrush brands also offer electric toothbrushes featuring your kids’ favorite tv show or movie character which might be just what they need to get them interested in keeping their teeth clean. Just always make sure you check the age recommendation and requirements on the toothbrush packaging before purchasing one or allowing your child to use it.

 

In many ways, an electric toothbrush is superior to the standard toothbrush. Other benefits of the electric toothbrush, compared to a regular toothbrush include removing stains that are caused by smoking cigarettes or drinking tea, coffee and wine.


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This question has been one of the most frequently asked and debated upon questions. Should you just brush your teeth twice a day? Should you brush your teeth after every meal? Exactly, how often should you brush your teeth per day? Today, we’re going to explore what the answer to that question is.

To start, the American Dental Association recommends that you brush your teeth twice a day. Yep, just twice a day. But there’s more. Between brushing your teeth twice a day, you should also be flossing and rinsing with alcohol-free mouthwash. You only need to do that once per day. To top off your oral care, you should also chew sugar-free gum throughout the day, between your meals, in order to decrease the amount of build-up on your teeth. These are great ways to prevent cavities and other gum diseases as a basic daily oral care routine.

In terms of visiting your dentist, you should come in for a dental cleaning at least twice a year. This is assuming that you are coming in for your annual check-ups, x-rays, cleanings, and other preventative care. If there are pains, aches, or other concerns that you have, of course, come in more often.

This is how often we recommend that you brush your teeth and come in for your dental care.

But of course, what if you forget to brush your teeth. You don’t need to brush your teeth at the same time every day, although that’s what we recommend. If you forgot to brush your teeth, simply brush it when you remember. There’s nothing wrong with brushing your teeth at a different hour of the day. Don’t let forgetting to brush your teeth become a habit because your teeth and gums will both suffer, as a result.

Make sure that brushing your teeth becomes a part of your daily grooming habit. When you use the bathroom in the morning, take a quick detour to brush your teeth. Make it a part of your routine so it becomes easier to remember.

Other things that you can also do in order to maintain great oral hygiene is to carry mini toothbrushes in your purse. These can be the type to substitute brushing your teeth when you are out and about just in case you need to brush your teeth and forgot in the morning. Carrying sugar-free gum is also another great way to keep your teeth nice and clean.

So how often should you brush your teeth?

The short answer? Do it twice a day, along with flossing and mouthwashing. You should also chew sugar-free gum, throughout the day, in order to maintain your pearly whites. It’s not a big deal if you forget to brush your teeth, just do it as soon as you can remember.

You should also visit your dentist at least twice a year for preventative maintenance and cleanings. If you need other tips or strategies to keep your oral hygeine at its best, feel free to contact us.



Science and technology has made lives considerably easier as well as hassle-free. They have provided benefit to mankind in every single way and in every single field. In the field of healthcare and medicine, technology has been immensely beneficial, one such gain offered is the electric toothbrush, which has changed the way of oral cleaning and maintaining proper oral hygiene.

As the name implies, an electric toothbrush uses electricity in order to allow for the motion of the bristles in to and fro or rotational manner in order to clean the teeth and gums of debris and germs. The motions of the bristles are brought about using an electric motor or piezoelectric crystals.

The first electric toothbrush was invented in Switzerland by Dr Philip Guy Woog, who marketed the product as “Broxodent”. The toothbrush had a plug which connected to the mains power supply in order to function, and was intended for patients with limited motor skills and for those who have had dental surgery or braces. The first wireless toothbrush was produced by General Electric in the 1960s, with the power from the device coming from rechargeable batteries. As time passed and regulations became stricter on electric toothbrushes using mains voltage for being unsafe, battery operated toothbrushes gained credence and nowadays every modern electric toothbrush runs on battery power due to the portability and the ease of use provided by batteries.

Electric toothbrushes can be classified on the basis of their motion or on the basis of their speed. Electric toothbrushes are either vibration based or rotation based depending upon the type of motion they employ to clean the teeth. A vibrating toothbrush is to be used in a similar manner as a regular toothbrush, while a rotation toothbrush involves the user to move the brush slowly from teeth to teeth to let it perform its cleaning action.

On the basis of speed, electric toothbrushes can be classified as standard power, sonic or ultrasonic toothbrushes. Standard toothbrushes operate below 20 Hz, while sonic toothbrushes operate between the ranges of 20 to 20,000 Hz. Ultrasonic toothbrushes operate beyond 20,000 Hz. These different toothbrushes have different cleaning speeds to ensure that the teeth and the gums are effectively cleaned.

Modern electric toothbrushes also contain a variety of other features, which includes a timer which reminds the user if they spend too much of time brushing their teeth. They may also have LED lights or LCD screens to display battery levels as well as other important information. Electric toothbrushes also have pressure sensors which detects if the user is applying too much of force while cleaning their teeth and sends out a warning in the form of a buzz sound. They also have switches and buttons to increase or decrease the intensity of the motion or speed at which the toothbrush cleans the teeth.

A variety of options are available in the market today, which makes it difficult to decide the correct electric toothbrush according to our needs. The dental professionals at Belvedere Family Dentistry can help you with your dental queries as well as your dental ailments with their knowledgeable yet caring staff.






Uptown Charlotte Dentistry & Orthodontics

Specializing in Braces, Invisalign, Composite Bonding, Veneers and Crowns.

We do our best to make it easy for you to get the beautiful smile you deserve! Our office accepts nearly all major insurance plans. Even though dental insurance is a private arrangement between you and your company, we will file your claim, handle all the paperwork, and help you get maximum insurance benefits.


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