Tips for Keeping Your Teen’s Braces Clean

Tips for Helping Your Teenager Keep Their Braces Clean

It’s common for teens to sometimes be a little lax in their day-to-day dental care, but the negative effects of not keeping up on this regular cleaning can be exacerbated if braces or another orthodontics device is involved.

While orthodontics like Fastbraces are used to help improve and perfect a smile, if not cleaned daily issues such as gum inflammation, discoloration of teeth, and halitosis may present themselves. A bit of preventative dentistry is all it takes to keep your teen’s mouth in a good state of health.

To assist your teen in preventing painful gum inflammation you should remind them to clean their Smile_girl2.jpgteeth after eating and brush at least twice a day. If you’re family dentistry office hasn’t given them a few spiral dental brushes, pick some up for your teen. These special brushes work well to remove debris that has become lodged in and around the braces and teeth. They are also small enough that your teen can carry them around in their purse, wallet, or backpack inconspicuously and use whenever needed.

If your teen has Fastbraces or another form of bracket orthodontics, discoloration could be an issue. The enamel that is covered by the brackets will maintain the same color of the tooth as the day they were placed. If your child is consuming a lot of stain inducing drinks such as tea, coffee, and dark colored soda without brushing afterwards they may be at risk of discoloring their teeth to a degree that they will not match the enamel on the underside of the brackets when removed. Encouraging your teen to brush, or at the very least rinse, after each meal or drink is an easy solution.

Halitosis, otherwise known as bad breath, is a common aliment when the mouth not cleaned correctly or regularly. For a teen it can be mortifying to realize they have bad breath and aren’t able to remedy it, so buying individual use mouthwash packets is a great way to help your teen keep their breath fresh on the go. To keep halitosis from becoming a chronic problem you should remind your teen to brush and floss thoroughly in the morning and before bed.

At Advanced Dental Care, Dr. VanderMolen specializes in family dentistry and is available to help your teen and the rest of your family with their preventative dentistry needs. Call (217) 546-3333 to help your teen get closer to a confident smile.

Minimizing Your Discomfort after Oral Surgery

Minimizing your Discomfort with Proper Oral Surgery Aftercare

Oral surgery can be necessary to improve or maintain one’s health and prevent future issues. Following oral surgery, special care must be taken to keep surgery sites clean, preclude complications, and minimize discomfort.

HappyOlderCouple.jpgThe foremost authority on the post-op treatment of oral surgery patients is the dentist or surgeon himself. At the conclusion of the surgery, there will be a set of patient care instructions given by the dentist. Following these instructions will keep you on the path to recovery, decreasing the healing time and time of discomfort. Ensure the instructions are written down and perhaps request that the person accompanying you to and from the surgery remember additional or specific directions and to help you begin your healing proce

ss as you arrive at home.

If prescribed pain medication, it will need to be picked up following oral surgery. Taking the medication as directed will keep p

ain to a minimum. Other post-op patient care should include eating foods that are cool in temperature and smooth in texture, keeping cold compresses handy, and rinsing carefully with warm salt water. The cool, smooth foods will be easy to eat and comforting on a sore mouth. Cold compresses like frozen gel or ice packs, or even bagged frozen vegetables, in addition to elevation of the head, will work well to reduce any throbbing pain and keep swelling down. Rinsing with warm salt water will remove remaining food particles and kill bacteria in the mouth – make sure this is done gently and that the water is not spat, but rather allowed to fall from the mouth.

As with any healing process, there are behaviors to avoid until healing is complete, or until authorized by the dentist as they may cause dry sockets, or other painful infections. Do not vigorously rinse or spit, use a straw, smoke or use chewing tobacco, rinse with mouthwash, or participate in physical activity. If you have had an extraction, do not remove anything for the extraction site.

These instructions are sure to include plenty of rest, so take it easy and if you have any further questions or concerns contact Dr. VanderMolen and the staff at Advanced Dental Care at (217) 546-3333.  We care about your comfort.  Click here for more information on the services available at Advanced Dental Care of Springfield.

Dr. VanderMolen on the Jim Leach Show discussing Successful Businesses

drvandermolen.jpgDr. VanderMolen was on The Jim Leach Show on WMAY 970The News and Talk of Springfield- on December 12, discussing his contributions to The Secret to Winning Big (by Brian Tracy), a book about successful business.

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and learn more about his strategy: “Be Nice to People”.


What Steps do I Need to Take to Prepare for My Sedation Dentistry Visit?

What Steps do I Need to Take to Prepare for My Sedation Dentistry Visit?

Many people feel uneasy at the thought of visiting a dentist. Most of them have an idea that the procedures done by dentists are painful and also feel a bit embarrassed to show the dentist their oral condition. But with the advancement of medical technology, dental surgeons now use very easy methods to sedate their patients before performing dentistry on them. One question many patients will have is “What steps do I need to take to prepare for my sedation dentistry visit?”

Firstly you should discuss with your dentist what type of sedation you will be given. There are many forms of sedation dentistry including inhalation sedation and oral sedation. It is important to understand that sedation is not only about putting you to sleep, but is only a part of the entire process. Methods used for sedation dentistry only make you feel drowsy and relaxed You should talk to your dentist about any concerns and fears you have during consultation.

You should to prepare yourself mentally as well as physically before you walk in for sedation. You should relax yourself and have a good night’s sleep.sedation-dentistry.jpg

There is nothing to fear in sedation dentistry. You will not feel any pain during the procedure. The important thing to do is to select the right sedation dentist. You should see what experience the dentist has in this type of dentistry and approximately how many procedures he has performed up to now. You should not be afraid to ask your sedation dentist questions about the areas you have doubts about and how you should prepare for the procedure.

Dr. VanderMolen is the sedation dentist you can trust for all your dental needs.  If you are anxious or fearful of the dentist, sedation dentistry could be the best option for you.  For more information about this and all our other services, contact our office at (217) 546-3333.  We look forward to working for you!


Do You Need an Emergency Visit with Your Dentist?


Accidents do happen from time to time which involve your teeth and knowing what action to take when an accident takes place could mean the difference between keeping and losing your tooth.

There are several situations that may take place involving your teeth that should be treated immediately and the majority of dentists set aside time throughout the day to handle such emergencies.

The following are examples of just some of the possible dental emergencies which need immediate treatment:

  • If you have knocked out a tooth, you should attempt to place the tooth back into its socket without it coming in contact with the root. If that is too difficult to do, put it between your gums and cheek or immerse it in milk and then immediately make your way to an Emergency Dentist.
  • If you crack a tooth, rinse out your mouth immediately with tepid water which will clean the affected area. Place on the face, on top of the area, cold compresses so as to prevent any swelling occurring.
  • If you experience a toothache use some warm water to clean the affected area and by using dental floss loosen any food that has become trapped between your teeth. Do not place an aspirin tablet on top of the affected tooth or in the region of the gum as this could cause burning to the gum tissue. If the pain persists, you should immediately make an appointment to see your dentist.
  • If you have managed to get an object stuck between your teeth, you should firstly attempt to dislodge it with dental floss. What you must not do is use a sharp implement to solve the problem. If the floss cannot move the object then you should pay a visit to your dentist as soon as possible, who will have an immediate solution which will save any damage to your teeth.

Avoidance of a dental emergency

There are some simple precautions that can be taken to avoid teeth damage which include:

  • Wearing a mouth guard when involved in activities, either at work or on a sports field, which could damage teeth.
  • Avoiding the chewing of nuts and hard candy varieties that could cause the cracking of a tooth.
  • Avoiding the use of your teeth to cut open things such as packets or the cracking open of nuts. The appropriate tools should be used for these tasks such as scissors or nut crackers.

If you have had an unfortunate accident with your teeth and need to see a dentist for emergency treatment, then you should not hesitate to contact the dental offices of Dr. VanderMolen, Advanced Dental Care, at (217) 546-3333 right away.  We will get you the emergency care you need.