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Fluoride | Is It Safe or Is It Natural | South Miami Family Dental

It is a current concern, as more and more people gain interest about natural and more organic ways to live. Together with gluten-free, no GMO's, no pesticides and other ways to keep chemicals and other harmful substances away, there is an also trending wave to use only natural fluoride or fluoride free toothpastes. You may be wondering, is it safe to go fluoride free and is there any benefits to that? 

First we must understand that fluoride is a naturally occurring chemical found in the earth. It is found in small amounts in the air, water and in even in some plants. But be careful, just because it is a naturally occurring component of the environment does not mean it is good for humans to ingest. In fact fluoride can be poisonous if ingested, especially in large quantities, that is why toothpaste containers with fluoride in them have a warning to contact the poison control if ingested. But as a topical treatment fluoride can provide great benefits to teeth.

The presence of fluoride in the mouth can attract other minerals (such as calcium) to the area. Calcium is good for our bones and helps maintain our teeth with a strong and healthy structure. What role does fluoride play in preventing tooth decay? Studies have shown that the benefits of fluoride are achieved only with topical application — not from ingestion. An exposure to fluoride (like that contained in toothpaste and city tap water) is the most effective cavity prevention treatment available today.

Toothpaste with flouride  is used to assist in good dental hygiene. Research has shown that it can reduce plaque, remove tarter, and clean and protect the teeth. Most of the cleaning action from brushing the teeth actually occurs from the abrasive back and forth action of the toothbrush.

Non-fluorinated toothpastes use natural ingredients such as hydrated silica, cranberry extract and xylitol to prevent the adhesion of bacteria to teeth and remove plaque. A derivative of silicon dioxide, hydrated silica is a mild abrasive that works synergistically with calcium carbonate to remove plaque. Hydrated silica also gives a gel-like texture to the toothpaste and helps remove stains. that contains hydrated silica, cranberry and xylitol.

But before you decide going fluoride free, read below the facts from the American Dental Association:

1. Why do children need fluoride? Fluoride is an important mineral for all children. Our mouths contain bacteria that combine with sugars in the foods we eat and the beverages we drink. The acid that is produced harms tooth enamel and damages teeth. Fluoride protects teeth by making them more resistant to acid and can even help reverse early signs of decay.

2. Is fluoridated water safe for me and my children to drink? Yes. Decades of research and practical experience have confirmed the safety of fluoride. Based on what has been learned from both science and our years of experience, the world’s leading health, dental, and medical organizations recognize water fluoridation as an effective way to reduce tooth decay for everyone – children and adults alike.

3. We brush our teeth with fluoride toothpaste every day. Do we still need fluoridated water? Yes. For most people, brushing with fluoridated toothpaste is not enough. Drinking fluoridated water throughout the day bathes our teeth in low levels of fluoride to help them stay strong. That, combined with the more concentrated fluoride in dental products, prevents more tooth decay than toothpaste alone. That is why it is so important to make sure your children are drinking fluoridated water and brushing properly with fluoride toothpaste at least twice a day.

4. Are there health risks associated with these forms of fluoride? No. There is no credible scientific evidence that fluoridated water or dental products contribute to or cause illness or disease. The only proven risk associated with excess fluoride is a cosmetic condition known as dental fluorosis.

5. What exactly is dental fluorosis? Should I be concerned about fluorosis from drinking fluoridated water? Dental fluorosis is a change in the appearance of the teeth, usually in the form of very faint white markings. It is usually detectable only by a dental expert during an exam. Most fluorosis does not affect the function or health of the teeth. In fact, teeth with mild fluorosis are more resistant to cavities. Most fluorosis is the result of consuming too much fluoride while teeth are forming, before the age of 8. To reduce this possibility, supervise brushing so that children do not use too much toothpaste or mouth rinse and learn to spit, not swallow. COMMON QUESTIONS ABOUT FLUORIDE: A Resource for Parents and Caregivers The American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Dental Association, and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry all support the use of fluoride to protect children’s teeth. For additional resources and information, please visit www.ILikeMyTeeth.org.

6. Is it safe to mix infant formula with fluoridated water? According to the American Dental Association, it is safe to mix infant formula with fluoridated water.

7. Are the fluoride additives used to fluoridate drinking water safe? Yes. The fluoride that is added to public water supplies conforms to stringent safety standards and results in water that complies with the Safe Drinking Water Act. The quality and safety of fluoride additives are ensured by Standard 60, a program that was commissioned by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). This program is monitored by an independent committee of experts, including the Association of State Health Officials and other key organizations.

8. How much fluoride should my child have to protect his/her teeth? Children who consume a nutritious diet, drink fluoridated water, and use fluoridated toothpaste properly will get all the fluoride they need for healthy teeth. It is not necessary to monitor water or food consumption since your child ingests low levels of fluoride from these sources. Parents will want to assure that children are not swallowing mouth rinse or toothpaste, which contain more concentrated amounts of this important mineral. Your health or dental provider can help you determine if your child is getting an adequate amount of fluoride to protect his/her teeth.

9. I have heard fluoride can cause all kinds of things, from lower IQ to cancer. Can that be true? No. There is no credible scientific evidence that water fluoridated at the levels used in the United States contributes to or causes disease or poor health. The only proven risk associated with fluoride intake from any source is dental fluorosis which can be lowered with proper use of fluoridated products like toothpaste and mouth rinse.

10. Is bottled water fluoridated? Most bottled water is not fluoridated. If it is, it will say so on the label. Many bottled waters are filled from municipal water supplies, and some of those sources may be fluoridated. But if fluoride was not added as part of the bottling process, it will not appear on the label. To be sure, call the number on the label for more information.



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How to keep your child's smile healthy.

Many parents have a difficult time judging how much dental care their kids need. Here's a few guides to keep in mind and ensure your little ones have a healthy smile!

When Should Kids Start Brushing Their Teeth?

  • Even before your baby starts teething, run a clean, damp washcloth over the gums to clear away harmful bacteria.
  • Once your baby gets teeth, brush them with an infant toothbrush. Use water and a tiny bit of fluoride toothpaste (about the size of a grain of rice). Use fluoride toothpaste that carries the American Dental Association's (ADA) seal of acceptance. (If you are using baby toothpaste without the fluoride, keep it to the same amount because you still want to minimize any toothpaste that is swallowed.)
  • Once your baby's teeth touch, you can begin flossing in between them.
  • Around age 2, your child should learn to spit while brushing. Avoid giving your child water to swish and spit because this might make swallowing toothpaste more likely.
  • Kids ages 3 and up should use only a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste.
  • Always supervise kids younger than 6 while brushing, as they are more likely to swallow toothpaste.

When Should Kids See a Dentist?
The ADA recommends that children see a dentist by their first birthday. At this first visit, the dentist will explain proper brushing and flossing techniques and do a modified exam while your baby sits on your lap.

These visits can help find problems early and help kids get used to visiting the dentist so they'll have less fear about going as they get older. Consider taking your child to a dentist who specializes in treating kids. Pediatric dentists are trained to handle the wide range of issues associated with kids' dental health. They also know when to refer you to a different type of specialist, such as an orthodontist to correct an overbite or an oral surgeon for jaw realignment.

If a child seems to be at risk for cavities or other problems, the dentist may start applying topical fluoride even before all teeth come in (this also can be done in the pediatrician's office). Fluoride hardens the tooth enamel, helping to ward off the most common childhood oral disease — dental cavities (also called dental caries).

How Can We Prevent Cavities?
Cavities happen when bacteria and food left on the teeth after eating are not brushed away. Acid collects on a tooth, softening its enamel until a hole — or cavity — forms.

Here's how to keep cavities away:

  • Start good oral habits early. Teach kids to brush at least twice a day with fluoride toothpaste and to floss regularly.
  • Get enough fluoride. Regular use of fluoride toughens the enamel, making it harder for acid to penetrate. Although many towns require tap water to be fluoridated, others don't. If your water supply is not fluoridated or if your family uses purified water, ask your dentist for fluoride supplements. Most toothpastes contain fluoride but toothpaste alone will not fully protect a child's teeth. Be careful, however, since too much fluoride can cause tooth discoloration. Check with your dentist before supplementing.
  • Limit or avoid certain foods. Sugary foods, juices, candy (especially sticky gummy candy, gummy vitamins, or fruit leather or "roll-ups") can erode enamel and cause cavities. If your kids eat these foods, have them rinse their mouth or brush their teeth after eating to wash away the sugar. The same goes for taking sweetened liquid medicines: always have kids rinse or brush afterward.
  • As your child's permanent teeth grow in, the dentist can help prevent decay by applying a thin wash of resin (called a sealant) to the back teeth, where most chewing is done. This protective coating keeps bacteria from settling in the hard-to-reach crevices of the molars. But make sure that kids know that sealants aren't a replacement for good brushing and regular flossing.

As kids grow, plan on routine dental checkups anywhere from once every 3 months to once a year, depending on your dentist's recommendations. Keeping sugary foods in check, encouraging regular brushing and flossing, and working with your dentist will lead good dental health.

Remember the best way to ensure your family's smile stays healthy is to have a plan and attend routing checkups to avoid emergencies. 

Source: kidshealth.org

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Every Kid Healthy™ Week is an annual observance created to celebrate school health and wellness achievements and recognized on the calendar of National Health Observances. Observed the last week of April each year, this special week shines a spotlight on the great efforts schools are making to improve the health and wellness of their students and the link between nutrition, physical activity, and learning – because healthy kids are better prepared to learn! Anyone can get involved and be a part of the celebration to help support sound nutrition, regular physical activity and health-promoting programs in schools with a school health event. Schools are invited to host an event during Every Kid Healthy Week or anytime in April. Consider making your field day or other school-wide event health-focused. 

Launched by Action for Healthy Kids (AFHK) in 2013, Every Kid Healthy Week is an annual observance on the calendar of National Health Observances that celebrates school wellness achievements. Observed the last week of April each year, this special week shines spotlight on the link between nutrition, physical activity, and learning and the great efforts schools are making to improve the health and wellness of students— because healthy kids are better prepared to learn!

At South Miami Family Dental we are committed to ensure the children in our community not only have access to good dental health but are also educated on how to achieve it. 

During the month of April we reach out to our younger patients and show them tricks and tips to care for their smiles. There are many things you can also do to participate in this great cause. Find out more here: http://everykidhealthyweek.org/

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Our hearts smile at these news!

We want to share with you this heartwarming story about two schools and a group of children making a difference in this world.

Club Cristiano La Esperanza is a small rural school located in the remote town of La Chureca, near Managua, Nicaragua. 

Club Cristiano La Esperanza is a ministry center that provides for the needs of children in the neighborhood near the Managua dump (known as La Chureca).  Since 2000, the ministry has helped the children in the community with their school Colegio Esperanza .

The Club sits now at the entrance to the new “La Chureca” neighborhood.  They provide for nearly 300 children at all levels of life;  free preschool, after school tutoring for elementary aged students, and a High School scholarship program.  Every student receives two meals a day as they also have a feeding program.  They offer sports, music and art classes for the children in the program.

Earlier this year Dr. Ordonez's daughter, Mariaclara Ordonez, and her school decided to go visit the children in this school. They took a 'field trip' and went over to this remote location to help out and bring much needed supplies for the children. 

Here, at South Miami Family Dental, we couldn't be prouder. We gladly donated toothpaste and toothbrushes and other dental supplies. These images say it all. 

If you want to help the school, and trust us they need all the help they can get, please visit their website to learn how you too could make a difference. 

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How Should You Deal With Oral Care During Pregnancy?

Expecting moms have so much to plan – and so much to take care of during their pregnancy. It goes without saying that regular obstetric visits are paramount. But how should women deal with proper oral care during pregnancy?

We all know it’s common for expectant moms to experience sensitive and/or bleeding gums. These symptoms usually resolve themselves after the baby is born. But many expectant moms wonder if they should postpone regular oral care appointments while pregnant. Are standard dental procedures - including X-rays or having local anesthesia - safe for pregnant women? What if a pregnant mom gets a toothache? Must she just suffer through it?

Let’s take this worry away from pregnant moms right now. Regular oral care is safe throughout pregnancy – and extremely important. Delaying the treatment of any dental problem during pregnancy can be dangerous. For example, the bacteria from an infected tooth could spread throughout the bloodstream – putting mom and baby at risk. The American Dental Association confirms that dental treatments involving local anesthetics are safe for pregnant women. Root canals, a tooth extraction and filling cavities can all be performed during this time. Even X-rays are safe. The radiation level in an X-ray is quite low, and you’ll be covered by a lead apron, which protects the abdomen. Regular dental cleanings are also extremely important. Our hygienists deal with plaque not removed by your regular brushing and flossing, thus lowering the possibility of tooth decay and gum disease developing. A healthy mouth decreases the risk of delivering prematurely or having a baby with low birth weight.

Make sure to let our office know you are pregnant – and your due date - when you schedule your appointment. This helps us provide the best possible care, and gives us the notice we need to make your visit more comfortable. For regular non-emergency dental visits, (remember to schedule one every six months) the second trimester or early in the third trimester is ideal. We’ll also need to be updated on any medications you may be taking during pregnancy. Consider us part of your team for a healthy pregnancy. We’re here for you, Mom!


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Why Dental Checkups Are Important

A healthy and beautiful smile can communicate happiness, radiate warmth, and make a lasting impression on others. What’s more, it helps to cultivate a positive self-image and is an essential element of your overall well being. Enjoying the benefits of a vibrant smile in tip-top condition is not something you can take for granted. To maintain optimal oral health requires putting some effort into an oral hygiene program at home along with making periodic visits to your dentist for a program of preventive care.

Did you know that your oral health and systemic health are very closely connected? The fact of the matter is that harmful conditions affecting your teeth, gums, jaws as well as structures in and around the oral cavity can have an impact on your overall well being. Dental problems can contribute to a range of health issues such as digestive disorders, heart disease, stroke or diabetes. The reverse has also been found to be true. According to statistics, more than 90% of all systemic diseases (diseases affecting organs and systems in the body) can manifest signs and symptoms in the oral cavity. Experiencing dry mouth, bad breath, gum problems, ulcerations or other oral lesions may be indicative of a serious underlying systemic condition, which your dentist may be the first healthcare professional to detect. 

It’s important not to hold off seeing the dentist until you’re in terrible pain or think there is something wrong. By scheduling a periodic appointment for a checkup and professional dental cleaning, your dentist can help to keep your smile looking and functioning at its best. At the beginning of your checkup up visit, the dentist will review your medical and dental histories and then perform a comprehensive examination of your mouth, jaws, and surrounding areas of the head and neck. While checking for the development of harmful dental conditions such as tooth decay gum disease and oral cancer, your dentist will also look for any oral indications of problematic health issues that may have originated elsewhere in the body. The function of your temporomandibular joints, the relationship between the upper and lower jaws, plus your occlusion (your bite) will be evaluated for any impairment or misalignment. During a comprehensive exam, the dentist is also able to spot the dental health consequences of dietary choices, eating disorders, harmful habits, certain medications and inadequate oral hygiene practices.

The best way to avert the development of cavities and gum disease is with good oral hygiene, a nutritious diet, healthy lifestyle and a program of preventive dental care. When you go for your periodic checkup visit, you will also be scheduled that day or shortly after that for a professional dental cleaning. During your hygiene visit, you’ll be given detailed instructions and tips on the best methods
of brushing and flossing to maintain an effective regimen of oral care at home.

Whether your dental needs are simply for preventive services or if they involve more complex care, your dentist will formulate a treatment plan tailored to your individual dental needs and concerns. Working in partnership with your dentist is the best way to ensure your smile is beautiful and healthy for many years to come.

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Your smile says a lot about you :)

A smile is a universal expression. It communicates happiness, radiates warmth, and makes a positive impression on others. An attractive sparkling white smile is not just associated with dental health; it is also viewed as an important asset in terms of an individual’s self-esteem, social interaction, and career success. Not everyone is lucky enough to have naturally beautiful pearly whites. However, thanks to developments in the area of cosmetic dentistry over the past few decades, less than perfect smiles can be dramatically improved. Among the most sought after and popular dental cosmetic treatments available today is teeth whitening.  

An in-office teeth whitening  procedure by your dentist is the best and safest way to get the maximum results immediately. In as little as one hour a professional strength in-office whitening system can give you a more pleasing smile with teeth that are several shades whiter than their original shade. Under the careful supervision of your dentist the surrounding soft tissues, gums, as well as any sensitive areas of the teeth are carefully isolated and protected from the effects of the bleaching agents. 

A home whitening system from your dentist along with custom trays that have been fitted to your teeth is also an excellent option. The trays fabricated by your dentist help to keep the bleaching agents in maximum contact with the teeth and away from the other areas of your mouth. Performing a home teeth whitening is a more subtle and gradual process. Maximum results are less rapid than an in office procedure and are typically achieved over a longer period of time. In certain instances an at home whitening system may be recommended by your dentist as a follow up regimen to the in office procedure in order to perfect or maintain your results.

How long your teeth whitening lasts depends on your lifestyle. Your eating, drinking, and smoking habits can have a big impact on maintaining your result. Of course the best way to insure that your smile stays healthy and beautiful is a good daily oral healthcare regimen along with regular dental check ups and cleanings.

Tags: South Miami Family Dental Family Dental Care

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Let’s Go a Little Deeper into Why Some Patients Need Deep Cleaning

No one ever said life is fair. We have some patients who visit our office very irregularly – maybe once every two to three years. (Sadly, 34% of all Americans skip their yearly checkup.) When these procrastinators finally come in, all they require is a regular dental cleaning – which focuses on teeth surfaces and the areas between the teeth above the gum line.  We have other patients who come to see us twice a year. They brush and floss regularly. Yet, these patients may need regular deep cleanings – to remove bacteria, calculus and tartar that have collected under their gum line. These conscientious patients seem to doing everything right. So, why are they the candidates for deep cleaning?

The truth is your overall oral hygiene is not only dependent on how often you brush and floss. Genetics play a part, as do the medications you take regularly. Are you a smoker? Your saliva might have too much calcium. Patients with diabetes or high blood pressure often suffer more from inflamed, bleeding gums. And, brushing technique plays an important role. Some patients think if the brush touches their teeth, their job is done. No, indeed. Brushing must be done properly to reduce plaque build-up.   

Once plaque begins accumulating under the gums, it can harden and become tartar. Gingivitis, an early stage of gum disease, is caused by the toxins released by bacteria in the plaque and tartar. Your gums become red and puffy. They may bleed easily. (Think of the discomfort of having a too-tight shirt sleeve on your arm.) When we see this condition, we recommend deep cleaning. If left untreated, the area could become inflamed, leading to infection, loose teeth, even bone loss.

Here’s how we make the assessment. Our hygienist uses a probe to check for and measure gum pockets. A pocket measuring 4 millimeters or deeper may be a sign of periodontal disease.  If your pockets are greater than 5 millimeters, you’ll probably need a deep scaling and root planning appointment. X-rays also show bone loss, which makes a deep cleaning a necessity.

In the procedure, we’ll be using electric or ultrasonic instruments and manual scaling tools. Ultrasonic cleaners force plaque and tartar off your teeth through their vibrations. Any debris that may still be present is removed with the use of a water irrigation system.

Step one, of course, is to come in for your regular cleaning. At this time, we’ll discuss your specific oral hygiene program and answer any questions you may have.


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Choosing the right pediatric dentist for your children

Your baby’s pediatrician has just suggested it’s time for your child’s first dental appointment. How do you select the right professional? Certainly, there’s much more to consider than how many toys you’ll find in the waiting room. Let’s take a moment to focus on pediatric dentistry, and provide you with useful information sure to help you with your decision.  

New parents often ask, "When should my child first see a dentist?" The quick answer – suggested by the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry is – first visit should be by your child’s first birthday. This may sound early, but national studies have shown that preschoolers are getting more cavities. And cavities are not the only concern. The age 1 dental visit lets parents discuss the proper care for an infant’s mouth, the use of fluoride, oral habits like thumb sucking, teething and developmental milestones, and the link between diet and oral health.

Parents may also wonder why they should seek out a pediatric dentist. The answer is simple: pediatric dentists are specially trained to care for children’s oral health – teeth, gum and mouth - from infancy through the teen years. A pediatric dentist continues their studies for two additional years after the four years of dental school. They complete a dental residency for infants, children, teens and special needs kids. They are qualified to do early assessment for straightening teeth. They are also experts on diagnosis of oral conditions associated with diseases such as diabetes, congenital heart defect and asthma, to list a few.

Remember, kids are not just small adults. They need professionals familiar with examining and treating them in ways that make them comfortable. In addition, pediatric dentists have specially designed equipment, and their offices are arranged and decorated with kids in mind.

After the one year exam, the dentist will suggest a schedule of follow-up visits. In the past, dentists typically called for visits every six months. Now, the schedule may vary according to each child's needs and risks. As your child grows, the dental team can help you learn how to prevent common oral problems. Our office team is standing by to answer all your questions.

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Maximize your dental insurance and benefits before the end of the year

We all know what a crazy month December can be. Holiday prep takes so much time: shopping, wrapping, cooking, getting ready for a full schedule of holiday parties - the list goes on. In all the rush, make sure you set aside the necessary time to make the most of your dental benefits. If there are some procedures you've been putting off, schedule them ASAP so we can get your work done before you lose your 2017 benefits. Ignoring simple dental issues can create bigger problems for you down the road. Here's a quick example:

             Let's say during your last visit to our office, we discovered you had a cavity. You said                            you'd schedule a follow-up appointment, but never actually got around to doing it. Now it's              December, and you're incredibly busy. Imagine how awful you'd feel if you developed a             toothache over the holidays. Worse yet, what could have been fixed by a simple filling (usually            handled in our office in one visit) - if ignored - could evolve into the need for a root canal or          even an extraction.

Don't derail a happy holiday season. Carve out some time to keep your smile at its healthiest and holiday brightest. And, it's a very bright idea to use all your dental benefits before year end

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We are Thankful for Good Dental Health

Thanksgiving is one of the most beloved days of the year. Family and friends gather to share a sumptuous meal and quality time. If you’re like most of us, you may even go around the table, asking everyone to share something for which they are thankful. Many times, the answer is “I’m thankful for the good health of those dearest to me.”

Sometimes in the rush of daily life, we forget how central good dental health is to our overall health. Sure, good oral hygiene helps prevent tooth decay and gum disease. But increasingly, researchers are finding that an unhealthy mouth may increase your risk of serious health problems, including heart attack, stroke, poorly controlled diabetes, even preterm labor.

Think of your mouth is a window into what’s going on in the rest of your body. Systemic conditions such as AIDS or diabetes often first become apparent as mouth lesions. Your saliva is an important diagnostic tool. For example, certain cancer markers are detectable in saliva.

More than 500 species of bacteria thrive in your mouth at any given time. These bacteria constantly form dental plaque. If you don’t brush and floss daily, and visit us for regularly scheduled dental cleanings, plaque can build up along your gumline, resulting in a form of gum infection called gingivitis. Left unchecked, gingivitis can evolve into a more serious gum infection called periodontitis. Long term gum disease eventually results in the loss of teeth. But the consequences may not end there. Good oral hygiene is absolutely crucial to keeping your healthy.   

At this time of year, all of us at South Miami Family Dental are thankful for our wonderful patients. We think of ourselves as partners in ensuring your family remains healthy. Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours, and a very merry holiday season ahead.

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Ask most folks if there’s a difference between family dentistry and general dentistry and you’ll probably get a shoulder shrug. Truth is the terms “family dentistry” and “general dentistry” are often used interchangeably. In reality, they do mean different things.

Let’s take a moment to clear this up. As we know, some dentists specialize in a certain area of dentistry, like endodontia (for the treatment of the teeth’s root and pulp). Others may concentrate on a certain age group. A general dentist does not have a defined area of specialization.

What makes South Miami Family Dental (SMFD) different is that we offer more than one specialized dentist in our practice. Our goal is to meet most of your family’s dental needs.

At SMFD, for example, you might make an appointment for your college-aged child to have a wisdom tooth removed. At the same time, you can make an appointment to have your own teeth cleaned with one of our hygienists.

Here are just some of the treatments available in our office:

  • Cleanings
  • Deep Cleanings
  • Root canal
  • Wisdom teeth extractions
  • Teeth whitening
  • Bondings and fillings
  • Porcelain crowns
  • Dentures

Implant dentistry is a specialty of SMFD. We also have one of the state’s most prominent TMJ doctors on staff. And, for those patients who need extra care, we offer sedation dentistry.

Our fully digital office features the most technologically advanced equipment to maximize your patient experience. For example, our digital X-rays emit less radiation and provide more accurate information. We utilize Cone Beam CT for 3-dimensional imaging which helps with the diagnosis, treatment and evaluation of certain conditions. Our use of radio wave technology produces better results than traditional laser technology for soft tissue surgery. Our intraoral digital scanner lets us provide you with highly accurate restorations while eliminating the discomfort of dental impressions.

For 20 years, we’ve been providing South Florida families with the highest quality dental care. To our existing patients, we’ve been honored to serve you and your family. To our new patients, let us show you the SMFD difference.

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(That’s right. Women GO to Their Dentists More Frequently Than Men)

Snaps to the ladies. Recent studies have shown what we suspected all along: women are more proactive than men in maintaining their teeth and gums. Women are almost twice as likely to go for regular dental checkups, then they schedule the recommended treatment following those checkups. Women also have a better understanding about how to maintain good oral health, and a more positive attitude toward visiting the dentist.

But, there definitely different challenges in women’s and men’s oral health. Let’s investigate some common questions women are asking.

  • I brush and floss each day. Why do my gums bleed sometimes?

Women have hormonal changes that can cause bleeding and gum disease. It might be linked to menstruation, pregnancy or menopause.

  • I always had healthy gums. Now that I’m pregnant, why are my gums sore?

Pregnancy gingivitis is a condition that occurs when the hormone balance in your body changes and levels of progesterone increase. This makes it easier for certain types of bacteria to grow - making gums more sensitive. Symptoms range from gums that burn or bleed slightly to severe swelling and infection. Morning sickness also contributes to dental problems due to increased acid coming in contact with teeth.

  • Is it true gum disease can cause problems with my baby?

Women with chronic gum disease are four to seven times more likely to deliver prematurely, resulting in underweight babies.

  • I’m in my 50’s and my gums are suddenly burning and bleeding. What’s wrong?

Hormone fluctuations occur during perimenopause and menopause. Symptoms include bloody gums, burning, dry mouth, changes in taste, and infection. You may need more frequent cleanings to prevent gum disease.

  • Can my osteoporosis meds cause bone loss in my jaw?

While the overwhelming majority of loss of bone in patients occurs when osteoporosis meds are administered intravenously, in some cases bone loss also occurred when medication was taken orally. Bone loss in the jaw causes complications for implant placement, as well as the healing from dental surgeries. Make sure to let us know if you are currently on this type of medication.

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October is Children’s Health Month – A Tip a Day to Brighten Little

Teaching kids about proper oral hygiene doesn’t have to be complicated or time consuming. In honor of Children’s Health Month, here’s a simple “Tip a Day” to keep your child’s smile at its brightest.

  • Start oral hygiene early! Wipe your baby’s gums daily with a clean moist gauze pad or washcloth.
  • When teeth first begin to erupt, gently brush infant’s teeth twice a day with a child-size toothbrush and water.
  • Start dental visits early – before the age of one.
  • At age 2, add a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste to the brush…and make sure your child spits it out.
  • Use only a soft-bristled brush.
  • Make sure your child has the dexterity necessary for proper brushing and flossing.
  • Brush the inside surface of each tooth first – plaque accumulates here first.
  • Don’t forget to brush the tongue.
  • Set a consistent time of day for brushing and flossing – make it a routine.
  • Consider setting a 2 minute timer for brushing – or play a favorite tune while they brush.
  • Don’t send toddlers to bed with a bottle of milk or juice. Sustained exposure to drinks containing sugar causes tooth decay.
  • Try to ensure toddlers give up pacifiers before 36 months. Long-term pacifier use can impair tooth development and cause speech-impairing malformations of the mouth.
  • Encourage kids to start drinking from regular cups between 12 and 15 months. Long term use of sippy cups can cause tooth decay and cavities.
  • Begin flossing your child’s teeth at age 4. By age 8, most kids can floss for themselves.
  • Floss daily to remove plaque from between their teeth and under the gumline BEFORE it hardens into tartar.
  • Because plaque is difficult for kids to see, consider using a plaque-disclosing tablet one time so your child can see where plaque likes to hide.
  • Praise your kids for doing a great job on their brushing and flossing.
  • Let children pick a fluoride toothpaste flavor they like.
  • Allow kids to choose their own toothbrush with the characters or colors of their choice.
  • Let your child pick a new toothbrush every few months.
  • Always replace toothbrushes after a cold, flu or infection.
  • If you opt for an electric toothbrush, you still must supervise correct brushing practices.
  • Have a discussion with your child’s pediatric dentist about sealants – not all kids need them.
  • Don’t pull out your child’s loose tooth. You could damage sensitive tissue. Allow kids to wiggle the tooth themselves.
  • Resolve to make your child’s diet healthier: serve more fruits and vegetables, less sugar and fewer carbonated beverages.
  • When kids do eat starchy or sugary foods, try to make it at mealtime instead of snack time. The extra saliva produced during a meal helps rinse food from their mouths.
  • If your tap water is not fluoridated, ask us about which daily fluoride supplements to use.
  • If your child participates in organized sports, make sure they have a properly fitted mouth guard.
  • Be a good role model by taking care of your own teeth.
  • Make sure your child comes to see us twice a year for cleanings and check-ups.
  • It’s Halloween….so which treats are best for kids? Surprisingly, one of the safest Halloween treats is sugar free gum. Stay away from lollipops and hard candies. Gummy worms and caramels stick to the teeth long after the treat has been enjoyed, so have kids rinse after eating these. Enjoy the day with smart, healthy treats!
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