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February Is National Gum Disease Awareness Month

It’s now estimated that 70 percent of the U.S. population suffers from some form of gum disease, including the early stages of gum disease known as gingivitis. Gingivitis is categorized by redness and swelling of the gums around the edges of your teeth. This area of the gums is known as the "gingiva."

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Unfiltered Tap Water: Worth the Risk?

Up until recently the main debate over water was fluoridated versus not fluoridated. Activists from both sides of the issue have presented their cases to communities around America, to varying degrees of success, but the debates still rage on. Now, a new risk has entered the fold in the water debate, and it could complicate an already confusing situation.

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Could ‘Smart Braces’ Shorten Orthodontic Treatments?

Wearing braces is one of those rites of passage that nobody looks forward to - from the teens stuck wearing them to the parents stuck paying for them, most families would rather complete the process as soon as possible. Unfortunately, orthodontic treatments only go as fast as your teeth are willing to move. But a new spin on braces may help speed up the process.

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New Dental Material Could Improve Fillings

Plaque. Bacteria. Food residue. Our teeth come in contact with a host of cavity-causing materials throughout the day. For healthy teeth that are cleaned properly, most of these intruders are no big deal, but for teeth that are already weakened due to improper care, damage or enamel defects, these oral intruders can really take their toll. But now, a new dental material under development at the University of Pennsylvania may help take some of the power away from those nasty outsiders - and it could change the future of oral health.

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Everything to Know Before Whitening Teeth

For some people, the pursuit of whiter teeth can be a bit of an obsession. From toothpastes and gums that promise to whiten while you use them to trendy all-natural treatments like charcoal and turmeric, it seems like people are willing to try just about anything. But while these treatments may not get the kind of results you’re hoping for, at least you’re not out a lot of money. The danger happens when patients begin investing tons of money into products like white strips, over-the-counter trays and those special lights you hold in your mouth to help accelerate whitening. Do these products work? And if they do, do they work as well as the treatment options available at your dentist’s office?

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Dental Controversies: A Dentist's Perspective

With so many conflicting reports in the news, it's hard to know which side of an issue is the right side to be on.  Thankfully, there are experts we trust to help us separate fact from hysteria. In that spirit, here are some of the most controversial dental topics to make headlines, and Dr. Hill’s take on them.

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Lasers Could Help Prevent Cavities

Lasers have been used in many facets of dentistry since 1994. From drilling cavities to root planing and more, lasers have made both the dentist’s job easier and patients' procedures shorter and less painful. But now, a new laser procedure under development may be able to help patients prevent one of the most common and painful dental problems plaguing teeth today: cavities.

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Are Your Teeth Cleaner Than a Monkey’s Teeth?

Generally speaking, when someone likens your behavior to that of an animal, it’s not a compliment. But that may not ring true for one particular barrel of monkeys from Great Nicobar Island in India. The monkeys are long-tailed macaques, and they are said to have impeccable dental hygiene that rivals even the most hygienic of humans. A study conducted by scientists at the Sálim Ali Centre for Ornithology and Natural History in Coimbatore, India, followed approximately 20 monkeys to observe their eating habits. But it wasn’t what the monkeys ate that left the scientists surprised - it was what they did after eating.

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Dogs at the Dentist?

If you’re a dog lover, you probably already know the comforting feeling you get from patting a warm, fluffy canine in times of stress. A dental practice in St. John, New Brunswick, Canada, is capitalizing on that comforting feeling and allowing patients to cuddle with an office dog during their dental cleanings. 

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Kids and Coffee

A recent headline in the United Kingdom’s Metro paper cautions, "You might want to stop feeding your kids Costa babyccinos if you want them to have teeth." Wait, what? 

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Answers to Strange Oral Health Questions

There are a lot of dental myths out there - and sometimes it can be hard to tell fact from fiction. Many of us have probably heard the common myth that if you swallow your chewing gum it will stay in your stomach for seven years. Thankfully, this myth isn’t true. While it is true that the stomach cannot break down or digest the resin compound used in gum, that doesn’t mean the gum stays in your stomach. In reality, your swallowed gum just gets sent down your intestines with the rest of the digested food in your stomach, and exits your body at the same time. 

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Tooth Stains May Come From an Unlikely Culprit

The pursuit of whiter teeth is a $1.4 billion-a-year industry, and it shows no signs of slowing down. With so many options out there promising a glowing smile, it’s hard to know what really works and what doesn’t. But studies have shown that some ingredients common in whitening toothpastes may be doing the latter - that is, staining your teeth while promising to whiten them.

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Got Digestive Problems? Oral Health Could Be Responsible

With an estimated 10 to 15 percent of the American population suffering from some form of bowel disorder, the medical community is always working to find a cure for these painful and often debilitating illnesses. Now, a new link has uncovered an unlikely contributor to digestive disorders: oral bacteria.

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After-School Snack Options Make a Big Impact

If you’re like most parents, you try to feed your children the healthiest food possible.  From a nutritious breakfast to a wholesome lunch and satisfying dinner, you strive to teach good habits that will encourage your children to make a lifetime of healthy choices. But a new study in the American Journal of Preventative Medicine has revealed that all those efforts could be undermined by something you have little control over: the food options surrounding your child’s school.

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A Clearer View: Are Dental X-Rays Safe?

There are few things as predictable in life as going to your semi-annual checkup at the dentist office. It's almost always the same, every six months: fill out some paperwork, then head back to the exam room for X-rays, a cleaning and finally your exam with the dentist. You know the cleaning is important, as is the exam, but what about those X-rays? Are they really necessary, and if they are necessary, how safe are they?

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How the Mouth Affects the Singing Voice

You may not have known this, but Dr. Hill met his wife in college in Shreveport, Louisiana, singing in the choir. In fact, he’s still a choir singer with his church today! As a singer, he knows it’s important to not just warm up your vocal chords properly before singing, but also to take excellent care of your oral health. Why? Because, believe it or not, caring for your oral health can deeply affect your singing voice. Here’s how.

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The Importance of Continuing Education in Dentistry

It takes eight years of full-time education to become a dentist: four years of undergraduate work and four years of graduate school, plus written and clinical examinations. Once your dentist has completed those requirements, he’s done, right? Not if he’s Dr. Hill. In fact, since graduating from dental school, Dr. Hill has voluntarily logged an additional 1,000 hours of continuing dental training - and that’s not including the time he spent as an instructor, teaching other dentists how to craft beautiful smiles just like he does with his patients every day.

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Yes, Even Cannabis Can Cause Oral Health Problems

Often touted as a safe and natural drug, cannabis, or marijuana, can still cause gum disease, according to a study from Columbia University. The study followed 1,900 recreational marijuana users over a period of one year and found that those who reported higher marijuana usage also had higher instances of gum disease.

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More Reasons to Care for Children’s Teeth

Brushing your children’s teeth may not be one of your highest priorities, but a recent survey by Delta Dental has revealed one more reason it should be.

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A Tooth Decay Vaccine Could Be Right Around the Corner

Cavities have been called one of the most prevalent health conditions facing the United States today. They are so common that, according to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, an estimated 92 percent of adults have at least one cavity in their permanent teeth, and at least 42 percent of children ages 2 to 11 have at least one cavity in their baby teeth. But while some of these instances of tooth decay can be prevented by better oral care habits, some teeth are just more prone to cavities than others.

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Call us today for a consultation to learn more about cosmetic and general dentistry with Dr. Hill can give you the smile you desire.

Call today at: 469.640.9550

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