Don’t Let Halloween Ruin Your Teeth | Hoboken Dentist

We are on the eve of the sweetest holiday of all. Yes, it’s a dentist’s archenemy – Halloween. If you have a family, you are sure to be carving pumpkins and dressing up in your scariest costumes to venture out into the night in search for candy confections. It is a fun time for the entire family, but it is also very important not to forget about our dental hygiene during these candy-covered events. After feasting on these spooky treats, keep these dental tips in mind:

Babies and children:

  • Clean each new tooth gently with a clean wet washcloth. As your baby grows you can switch to a child’s toothbrush.
  • Do not use toothpaste on a child younger than 2 years old.
  • Do not let your baby fall asleep with a bottle. This leads to what is called “baby bottle tooth decay.”
  • Take your child to the dentist regularly starting at 1 year of age.

Teenagers:

  • Brush twice a day with fluoride toothpaste.
  • Floss at least once a day.
  • Don’t smoke or chew tobacco.
  • If your teenager plays sports be sure they wear a protective mouth guard.
  • Make sure they see the dentist for all regular checkups.

Adults:

  • Brush teeth at least twice a day with fluoride toothpaste.
  • Floss at least once a day.
  • Don’t smoke or chew tobacco.
  • Check with your doctor to make sure any medications you are taking might damage your teeth.
  • Check your mouth regularly for sores, red swollen gums or anything out of the ordinary.
  • See your dentist every six months for regular checkups and cleanings.

To learn more about dental hygiene, call Dr. David Musarra at Dental Associates of Hoboken at 201-795-2111. Also visit the website at www.hobokenpediatricdentistry.com.

Dr. David Musarra proudly accepts patients from Hoboken and all surrounding areas.

Why Getting Veneers Is the Ideal Choice | Hoboken Dentist

If there is anything we envy celebrities for is their fantastic Hollywood smiles. Those bright, shiny pearly whites not only look perfect but never seem to stain or have a single flaw. Porcelain laminates, or veneers, offer superior benefits over other cosmetic dental procedures, like dental crowns or braces. These fingernail-thin shells, which are adhered to the front surface of the tooth, solve a myriad of aesthetic problems with just a single treatment. Sound too good to be true? Here are ten reasons why you are going to want veneers:

Natural looking. Porcelain is a translucent material that mimics the look, luster, and feel of enamel.

Achieve that Hollywood smile. When adhered to the front surface of your teeth, veneers you’re your teeth look instantly whiter.

Straighten the crooked. Veneers offer a great alternative for patients with crooked teeth who do not want to endure the process of having their teeth straightened with dental braces.

Fix the damaged. Veneers can fill in and improve the look of teeth that are chipped or broken.

Fill in gaps. Veneers can be customized to repair smiles with unsightly gaps.

Youthful lift. A whiter, brighter, more lustrous smile can immediately you’re your face a more youthful appearance.

Conservative change. Unlike other cosmetic procedures that require removing a large portion of healthy, natural teeth, veneers can be applied with little alteration.

Dental protection. Once applied, the veneers also serve to provide a protective shield to the front surface of teeth.

Stain-resistant. Porcelain is stain resistant, which will make your smile stay brighter and whiter longer.

Gum friendly. Gum tissue is not irritated by porcelain.

To learn more about porcelain veneers, call Dr. David Musarra at Dental Associates of Hoboken at 201-795-2111. Also visit the website at www.hobokenpediatricdentistry.com.

Dr. David Musarra proudly accepts patients from Hoboken and all surrounding areas.

Toothbrush 101: When to Replace | Hoboken Dentist

We all know the basics of dental hygiene – we need to do it on a daily basis, we need to do brush for at least two minutes, along with flossing and rinsing with a good anti-bacterial mouthwash to rinse away the cavity-causing bacteria. But what we may not always think about is maintaining the tools you need to keep that smile bright and healthy, namely your toothbrush.

How often should you replace your toothbrush? A question that most individuals fail to answer. To be fair, there isn’t a real specific answer, however the American Dental Association recommends getting a new toothbrush about every three months. A strikingly odd fact about your toothbrush is that it probably is covered with 10 million germs and bacteria. Though this sounds awfully unsettling, have no fear! These bacteria aren’t big enough to threaten your teeth.

There is a proper way to clean and handle your toothbrush right after usage to ensure yourself a greater chance of less bacteria. Make sure to run your toothbrush under tap water and then let it air dry in an upright position, and you should allow sufficient time for your toothbrush to dry before you decide to use it again. When you happen to catch a cold, make sure to replace your toothbrush afterwards to prevent your cold from returning. If you are really worried about bacteria and germs, soak your tooth brush in a mouthwash solution, or use some hydrogen peroxide mixed with water to form your own solution.

Everyone wants a smile to be proud of – make sure you have the proper tools to keep it.

To learn more about toothbrush care, call Dr. David Musarra at Dental Associates of Hoboken at 201-795-2111. Also visit the website at www.hobokenpediatricdentistry.com.

Dr. David Musarra proudly accepts patients from Hoboken and all surrounding areas.

There’s Nothing Wrong with Getting a Little Filler | Hoboken Dentist

Did you know that September is National Self Care Awareness Month? It’s true. If there was ever a time you should take a minute to take a personal inventory of what you need to live your healthiest life, now is it. This includes your dental health. After all, the mouth is the first line of defense against most of our overall health issues, so taking care of it is important.

Unfortunately, there are plenty of instances that happen, and regardless of your dental hygiene routines, you’ve ended up developing a cavity. There is no need to panic – you can have it fixed, but it is going to entail a trip to the dentist. You will be presented with dental filling options, but your options are going to vary. Here is a quick rundown of the types of fillings available:

Amalgam. Amalgam fillings are very durable, easy to use, and inexpensive when compared to other materials. They can sustain very heavy chewing loads, so they are usually used to restore molars.

Composite. Composite fillings are made out of a mixture of glass or quartz and resin, producing a tooth-colored filling. They are durable and provide good resistance against fracture where there is moderate chewing pressure. Composite fillings take a bit longer to complete and tend to discolor over time.

Ionomers. Ionomers, on the other hand, are made out of a mixture of acrylic acids and fine glass powders and used in areas that do not require any chewing resistance since they have low protection against fractures.

To learn more about dental fillings, call Dr. David Musarra at Dental Associates of Hoboken at 201-795-2111. Also visit the website at www.hobokenpediatricdentistry.com.

Dr. David Musarra proudly accepts patients from Hoboken and all surrounding areas.

Before You Grab that Energy Drink, Read This | Hoboken Dentist

One way we perk ourselves up is with energy drinks. But what you may not be aware of is that energy drinks are causing irreversible damage to their teeth. Energy drink contain high amounts of acid that essentially rest upon our teeth and cause a multitude of irreversible damage.

We all know we shouldn’t drink sugary drinks frequently, but what about the acidity in them? It’s probably not something we think much about, but dentists say it is high time we start, especially when it comes to the river of energy drinks we — and young people in particular — are consuming.

These high acidity levels found in energy drinks erode tooth enamel, the glossy outer layer of teeth. Damage to tooth enamel is irreversible, and without it, teeth become overly sensitive and are more likely to decay and develop cavities. Dentists all around are reaching out to their patients to limit their energy drink consumption, as the results may damage their oral health forever.

After consuming energy drinks, patients should wait about an hour before they brush their teeth. During this time the enamel of your teeth is soft and susceptible to damage. If you do consume an energy drink it’s always a good idea to rinse your mouth with water afterwards while waiting for the opportunity to brush your teeth.

Always be aware that everything you eat or drink either has a positive or negative effect on your oral health. Good dental hygiene can help combat the things you eat and drink that are not good for your teeth and gums. This is includes brushing twice a day, flossing and using mouthwash.

To learn more about the effects of energy drinks, call Dr. David Musarra at Dental Associates of Hoboken at 201-795-2111. Also visit the website at www.hobokenpediatricdentistry.com.

Dr. David Musarra proudly accepts patients from Hoboken and all surrounding areas.

I Need a Filling. Which Is Best? | Hoboken Dentist

When it’s time to visit the dentist and you find out that you need a filling, it’s never a good feeling to have. Not only have you not taken care of your teeth well, but now you need to have another dental procedure. Many patients are confused by what kinds of dental filling options are available but are dependent on many factors – the patient’s health, where and how the filling is placed and chewing pressure the tooth will have to bear.

Amalgam. Amalgam fillings are very durable, easy to use, and inexpensive when compared to other materials, so they are usually used to restore molars. Unfortunately, amalgam fillings are silver, so they aren’t as natural looking, possible short-term sensitivity, and more tooth structure is removed to conform the filling.

Composite. Composite fillings are natural-looking, durable and provide good resistance against fracture in small to medium restorations where there is moderate chewing pressure. Because less tooth structure is removed when using a composite, a smaller filling can be used than one using amalgam. They are moderately more expensive than amalgam depending on the size of the filling and procedure time is generally longer, and they tend to stain and discolor over time.

Ionomers. Ionomers, on the other hand, are made out of a mixture of acrylic acids and fine glass powders. Ionomers are usually utilized to fill cavities on the root surfaces of teeth or in small fillings that do not require any chewing resistance since they have low protection against fractures.

To learn more about fillings, call Dr. David Musarra at Dental Associates of Hoboken at 201-795-2111. Also visit the website at www.hobokenpediatricdentistry.com.

Dr. David Musarra proudly accepts patients from Hoboken and all surrounding areas.

Take Care of Your Tiny Human’s Teeth | Hoboken Dentist

Our child’s mouths are very busy places from ages 6-12. They will shed twenty baby teeth, which they acquired by age three, en route to building a finished, full set of 28 adult teeth. Their jawbones and new teeth grow while their baby teeth fall out to make room. It’s a wonderful process to witness, and to celebrate with visits from the Tooth Fairy.

However, most children’s teeth do not come in perfectly straight. It’s very common to see new adult teeth crowded by other teeth, especially in a still-growing jaw. Bite misalignments may appear that cause awkward chewing and even jaw pain or teeth damage. Early intervention with orthodontics is a great way to stay ahead of problems and make the transition to permanent teeth a happy one.

In the past, dentists typically waited for patients to enter adolescence before intervention, but today’s technology allows pre-emptive treatment in children as young as six or seven. When the first signs of crowding appear, dentists can proactively help incoming adult teeth emerge into better positions in the mouth and sometimes even avoid pulling teeth. Children with crossbites, protruding teeth and small dental arches are good candidates and work done earlier may shorten the treatment term. The American Association of Orthodontics recommends that kids be screened for problems at age seven.

Of course, orthodontics provides cosmetic enhancement as well as medical benefits, and avoiding braces during the sensitive high school years is an added bonus. With early intervention, your child could have their beautiful smile completed ahead of schedule.

To learn more about pediatric dentistry, call Dr. David Musarra at Dental Associates of Hoboken at 201-795-2111. Also visit the website at www.hobokenpediatricdentistry.com.

Dr. David Musarra proudly accepts patients from Hoboken, Weehawken, Jersey City, Union City, North Bergen, Newark and all surrounding areas.

Protect Your Little One’s Teeth | Hoboken Dentist

thumb suckingAccidents happen, especially when children are involved. And as parents, we try to do our best to protect our little human’s bumps and bruises. Sometimes you can slap a bandage on a “booboo”, but if it’s a dental accident, it’s a little bit tougher to know what to do in a pinch. Because knowing what to do when one occurs could be the difference between saving and losing a tooth. Preventative measures are always best to avoid the potential for accidental tooth damage, such as having your child wear a mouth guard when playing sports and avoid chewing hard candy. If your child does end up with a dental emergency here are a few tips to help you:

Broken tooth. Rinse mouth with warm water and apply a cold compress to reduce swelling. Call your dentist immediately.

Knocked out baby teeth. If it seems to be more serious than a knocked-out tooth, consider going to the hospital. If the injury looks like just a knocked-out tooth, call your dentist.

Knocked loose baby teeth. If a tooth is knocked loose, call your dentist for advice on how to proceed. He or she will likely advise a soft diet for the next few days to allow the tooth to re-implant into the jawbone.

Knocked out permanent teeth. Call your dentist immediately for an emergency appointment. It is critical to get your child and his or her tooth to the dentist within 30 minutes of the accident, as it may be possible to successfully re-implant the tooth. Keeping the tooth in good condition and receiving care immediately make the odds of successful re-implantation much higher.

To learn more about dental emergencies, call Dr. David Musarra at Dental Associates of Hoboken at 201-795-2111. Also visit the website at www.hobokenpediatricdentistry.com.

Dr. David Musarra proudly accepts patients from Hoboken, Weehawken, Jersey City, Union City, North Bergen, Newark and all surrounding areas

Make Sure Your Little One’s Smile Stays Healthy | Hoboken Dentist

New parents typically have no shortage of questions they must answer when dealing with their child’s “firsts”. Pediatric dentistry is no exception – there are a number of “firsts” for children as it relates to their teeth, and navigating them effectively is key to setting the foundation for good oral health for their children.

The first question for new parents is typically when they should expect the first teeth. The two lower front teeth should erupt around 6 months of age, followed by the two upper center teeth. The remaining will appear in no predictable order – but all 20 baby teeth should be present by 3 years of age.

The next natural question is typically when the parent should schedule their child’s first dentist appointment. You should make sure the first appointment is within 6 months of the first tooth appearing, but definitely before the child’s first birthday. The first visit is typically a checkup to look for signs of decay, check the bite, and look for problems in the gums, jaw, and tissues within the mouth. The dentist will take this opportunity to provide guidance on topics such as brushing, fluoride, teething, and problems like thumb sucking.

Just like adults need to brush twice a day, parents also need to brush the teeth of young children. Your child’s first toothbrush should be a soft-bristled brush with a small head (age appropriate size). As an infant, you should clean the gums with a soft brush and water. Once teeth appear, start brushing twice a day with non-fluoride toothpaste; once your child can spit, you can transition to fluoride toothpaste.

To learn more about pediatric dentistry, call Dr. Flynne Weingarten at Dental Associates of Hoboken at 201-795-2111. Also visit the website at http://www.hobokenpediatricdentistry.com.

X-rays: Aids to Your Child’s Dental Health | Hoboken Dentistry

X-rays are valuable diagnostic tools dentists may use to help evaluate your child’s teeth. There is no official standard time in which your child’s mouth should be x-rayed, as this varies with the child’s development and dental health. If your child has had many x-rays, your dentist may suggest getting one done every six months in order to track progress. There are five types of x-rays that your dentist may use for your child depending on the goal:

Bitewing x-rays (also called cavity-detecting x-rays). These x-rays are used to view the areas between teeth that cannot be seen directly to check for cavities, but needed only after the teeth in the back of the mouth are contacting each other.

Periapical x-rays. The x-rays also will show the supporting bone structure of the teeth. This type of X-ray lets the dentist see a child’s permanent teeth growing below the baby teeth, and to look for abscesses and gum disease.

Panoramic x-rays. These x-rays are used to view all of the teeth on one film, used if a child has hurt his or her face, has orthodontic problems, or is mentally or physically disabled. Also helpful for children who gag easily or who have small mouths.

Occlusal x-rays. These are used to view most of the upper or lower teeth on one film. This is useful when the dentist does not have a panoramic x-ray machine.

Orthodontic x-rays (also called cephalometric or lateral skull). This type of x-ray is used to evaluate growth of the jaws and the relationship of bones in the skull to make an accurate diagnosis and develop a treatment plan.