Preventing Bad Breath – Dr. Stone’s top ten ways

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There are many causes of bad breath (halitosis) and many people may be unaware they have it. It’s just one of those things that folks are often reluctant to talk about.

Causes include poor oral hygiene, gum disease, sinus and respiratory tract infections, acid reflux and more. But by far, the most common cause is poor oral hygiene. Below is a list of some easy things you can do to prevent or minimize bad breath if you think you may be suffering from it.

  1. Keep the saliva flowing. Drink plenty of water and chew Xylitol gum.
  2. Avoid antihistamines and other medications that dry the mouth, if alternative medicines work just as well.
  3. See your dentist regularly and get prompt treatment for any problems.
  4. Get your teeth cleaned by a dental hygienist at least twice a year.
  5. Practice meticulous oral hygiene. That means flossing regularly and brushing your teeth and tongue diligently. That’s right, the tongue. Brushing the upper surface of your tongue every time you brush your teeth removes a lot of gas-producing bacteria.
  6. Avoid foods (like onions and garlic) you find make your breath smell bad. These foods contain aromatic compounds that are eliminated through the lungs and sweat glands. Keeping your mouth clean will not eliminate these odors!
  7. Don’t smoke or chew tobacco. They encourage the growth of mouth bacteria and irritate the nose and sinuses, making them more vulnerable to infection.
  8. Use an antibacterial mouthwash.
  9. Keep Xylitol breath mints on hand for a quick, if temporary cover-up.
  10. Finally, relax. It’s simple to reduce bad breath in the morning.

Just remember to always check with us when you are in the office to rule out any systemic causes and to make sure you are doing what is necessary  or you to prevent this problem. Don’t hesitate to contact me with any questions or suggestions you may have or contact Dr. Laurence Stone in Doylestown, PA today to schedule your next appointment and we can talk more about this. See you soon!

Donated dental services – Lending a helping hand

Recently I received a letter from Donated Dental Services (DDS), the parent organization for the Dental Lifeline Network in Pennsylvania. The purpose of the letter was to congratulate all of the volunteers who have worked with this organization since its inception in 1986. To date, DDS has provided more than $250 million in services to 120,000 people with disabilities or who are elderly or medically eligible in all 50 states.

There are many organizations that offer the opportunity to provide donated care to those in need. Some of those I have worked with over the years include:

  • Rotaplast International – a Rotary International affiliated organization providing cleft lip and palate surgeries to disadvantaged children worldwide.
  • The Ann Silverman Community Health Clinic – a Doylestown Hospital based program providing routine dental care to needy adults in the central Bucks area.
  • Give Back a Smile – a program affiliated with the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry which restores the smiles of women victimized by domestic abuse.
  • Mission of Mercy (MOM) in PA – Providing dental care to focused areas of need within Pennsylvania.

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(Shown above: Dr. Stone poses with fellow volunteer at the MOM n PA clinic held at Temple University)

Some of the most rewarding experiences I have had as a dentist have been working with volunteer organizations. The need is enormous and the patients I have treated have been among the most appreciative I have met. There are many dental organizations that largely go unappreciated or are unknown to the general public. You can find an extensive list of them on the American Dental Association’s website.

Regardless of the type of work you do, there is always a need in today’s world for volunteer efforts. I would urge anyone to consider volunteering your time or talents in a way that suits you. You may just find that you too will experience how rewarding volunteering can be!