First steps to overcome your dental anxiety

Dentist in Cambridge

“When ‘I’ is replaced by ‘we’ even illness becomes wellness” ~ Malcom X

How does your body work?

The first step to overcoming your dental anxiety is to figure out how your body and mind work in anxious situations.  Knowing this information is critical to moving forward because your anxiety is not obvious to anyone but you.

Find the right dentist that can work with you

I am a firm believer that nothing good can come from a relationship without a fundamental level of trust. The problem is that as a patient, it’s extremely hard to know who to trust.  Sure, we can scour the internet, read online reviews, or get referrals from friends, but in the end, how closer are you to making the right decision? How do you know who will be able to handle your unique brand of dental anxiety?  The truth is that you don’t know.  This is where trust and having a gut instinct come into play.  

In our next post, we discuss topics to address with your dentist to begin creating a more trusting environment and learn how capable your dental provider is in treating your unique needs.

 

Dr. Jeffrey E. Greenberg DMD

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To view the video series, visit us:

Facebook: @sweetspotdental

Instagram: @hellosweetspotdental

To see how Dr. Greenberg and his team can help you click here

What is dental anxiety?

Dentist in Cambridge

“You can’t go back and change the beginning, but you can start where you are and change the ending.” ~ C.S. Lewis

 

Have you ever kicked your dentist in the face (intentionally or unintentionally?) Do you feel like you get a little shaky before your dental visits?  Or feel like you are always jumpy in the dental chair?  This post, a component of our Anti-Anxiety Dental Series, explains what is happening with your body.

Different types of anxiety 

Minor signs: 

  • Nervousness
  • Chair gripping
  • Quick talking
  • Lack of communication
  • Feeling cold or overheated

Major signs:

  • Trembling/shaking
  • Crying
  • Dizziness
  • Chest Pains
  • Hitting dentist/assistant

Not all anxiety is the same

The unique thing about dental anxiety is that everyone has very specific ways it can hijack their minds and bodies. In almost every situation though, it feels as though something is overcoming them with little or no control over it.  

Is there hope?

Dental anxiety itself can seem like a large mountain to overcome, luckily I have years of experience in working with patient that have all forms of dental anxiety.  In my professional opinion, there is not only hope, but using the right strategy, any procedure can be accomplished with ease and with limited or no medication.

Dr. Jeffrey E. Greenberg DMD

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To view the video series, visit us:

Facebook: @sweetspotdental

Instagram: @hellosweetspotdental

To see how Dr. Greenberg and his team can help you click here

Dentist in Cambridge | Tobacco & Your Teeth: The Risks of Chewing and Smoking

Dentist in Cambridge

Chewing and smoking tobacco are known to cause severe health problems, particularly in the lungs. But the risks to your mouth and teeth can be just as extensive and alarming. If you use tobacco, stop. Here’s what tobacco can do to your oral health.

Chewing Tobacco
According to the Academy of General Dentistry (AGD), tobacco chewers increase their risk of developing gum and cheek cancers by 50 times. Tobacco dissolves the gums which leads to sensitivity from exposed roots. This also makes for an ideal location for bacteria to grow, leading to decay. If you are chewing tobacco, stop, and ask our experienced oral health team about what you can do to keep your mouth healthy.

Smoking
According to a report by the AGD, smoking one pack a day can lead to the loss of two teeth each decade of your life. Smoking increases your odds of losing teeth. Cigarettes and cigars are both damaging to your oral health. Smoking can cause staining as well, leading to an unattractive smile.

Oral Cancer
Oral cancer can develop in several places in your mouth including on your tongue, lips, mouth floor, and gums. Those over 50, are at an increased risk of developing oral cancer, as are men. However, Oral cancer has been on the rise, especially for people under 30 according to the AGD. Schedule an appointment with us to receive a thorough oral health examination, and ask us about an oral cancer screening, particularly if you are a tobacco user. Oral cancer screenings are often very quick as our dentist checks your mouth, teeth, and cheeks for signs of irregularities. If caught early, oral cancer can be treated.

If you are a tobacco user, we strongly advise you to quit. You can work with our professional dental team as well as your doctor to overcome tobacco use. Everyone should be receiving regular oral health examinations, but if you are a tobacco user, you need to be especially vigilant in doing so. Schedule a visit to our office so that we can work with you to identify any potential issues.

For more tips on keeping your mouth healthy or to schedule your next visit to our office, please contact our office.

How do people get their dental knowledge?

Dentist in Cambridge

While practicing dentistry, I’ve discovered an unfortunate truth: people are often too scared to ask questions about their own oral health or don’t know where to turn for advice. Too often, they get their information by online sleuthing whenever something hurts or believing false ad claims intended to sell a product. 

I’m a firm believer that dental knowledge should be easily accessible, accurate, and free.  

As a dentist and educator at Tufts School of Dental Medicine for more than seven years, my goal has been to shed light on topics that have plagued, pained, or confused my patients. I want to be a source of information for anyone looking for some truth on oral health care. As owner of Sweet Spot Dental in Cambridge, MA, I take pride in creating an environment where my patients can bring their questions and have them answered without any fear or judgement. My goal with them is to build a relationship that better addresses their dental needs. I never wanted to be someone who just fixes/cleans teeth, but a resource that can ultimately lead to a healthier smile. As someone curious about dental health, I want to be that resource for you, too.  

Please check out the following video and blogs that are part of my dental anxiety series. I dive into what causes dental anxiety, how it manifests, and how it can be tamed. Via this series, I hope to enlighten you and teach you a few things you may not know. I strongly encourage you to reach out to me with any comments, concerns, or questions that I might be able to address in future videos or blogs. Thanks for reading and watching, and for joining me on this educational journey!

 

Dr. Jeffrey E. Greenberg DMD

 

To view the video series, visit us:

Facebook: @sweetspotdental

Instagram: @hellosweetspotdental

To see how Dr. Greenberg and his team can help you click here

Dentist in Cambridge | Are You Brushing your Teeth Properly?

Dentist in Cambridge

Many people are surprised to learn that, for years, they have actually been brushing their teeth the wrong way. Brushing your teeth the wrong way may cause oral health problems. Learn how to brush your teeth the right way and you will protect them for many years to come.

The common way people brush their teeth is the back and forth motion, similar to sawing back and forth, until you feel like your teeth are clean and slippery. This is the wrong way to brush your teeth. This motion causes you to scrub away tooth enamel, which will make your teeth sensitive to hot and cold liquids and food much sooner then they normally would be. This sawing motion is very abrasive to your teeth and gums. Over brushing can increase your chances of developing cavities and receding gums. This method also does not clean effectively. Since the bristles are moving back and forth, they are essentially bouncing from one tooth to the next, which causes you to miss the spaces in between the teeth to remove plaque and other tiny particles of food.

So what is the proper way to brush your teeth? Start by placing your toothbrush at a 45 degree angle to where the teeth meet the gums. Then gently move your toothbrush back and forth and making sure the bristles cover each tooth and work their way around the sides of the tooth. This method allows you to find all of the food particles and plaque in the spaces between your teeth.

The importance of brushing teeth properly is overlooked, but it is an important part of keeping your teeth and gums healthy. Using the right method to brush your teeth will prevent plaque build-up that is harmful and can lead to many oral health problems. Brushing properly will prevent:

• Gingivitis: a gum disease that develops when there is plaque beneath the gum line and separated the teeth from gums
• Cavities: permanent damages in the form of tiny hold on the hard surface of the teeth
• Tooth Decay: damage that occurs when bacteria in your mouth make acids that eat away at a tooth

It’s not easy to relearn brushing after you’ve been using one method. Switching over will take some getting used to, but the results will speak for themselves. If you have any questions regarding the correct method of brushing your teeth, please contact our office.

Dentist in Cambridge | Gum Health and Alzheimer’s Disease

Dentist in Cambridge

Your gum health may have an impact on your cognitive function. One recent study found a correlation between gum disease and increased cognitive decline for people living with early stages of Alzheimer’s disease. While more studies are needed to make a definitive connection, this study illustrates the importance of continuing the conversation about oral health and its impact on your entire body.

Details of the Study
The study was administered by King’s College London and the University of Southampton. It observed 59 patients with early stages of Alzheimer’s disease. Blood tests were utilized to examine inflammatory markers present in the bloodstream, while patients’ dental health was examined by dental hygienists.

What it Found
The study found that patients with gum disease experienced cognitive decline at a rate 6 times faster than those without gum disease. The study suggested that the body’s reaction to inflammation may be responsible for causing the rapid decrease in brain function.

Importance of Healthy Gums
Previous studies have determined that gum disease can increase your risk of developing complications such as heart disease and stroke. Maintaining healthy gums is essential to staying healthy overall. You can keep your gums healthy by following good daily oral hygiene habits. This includes brushing twice each day for two minutes, as well as flossing regularly.

For those living with Alzheimer’s disease, it is imperative to maintain good oral health. If you are a caregiver of someone with the disease, make sure they are following an effective daily oral hygiene routine, as well as visiting our office for regular examinations. Keeping your gums healthy may be one key to keeping your body and brain healthy throughout your lifetime.

For more information about gum health, or to schedule your next visit to our office, please contact our office.

Resources:
https://www.alzheimers.org.uk/site/scripts/news_article.php?newsID=2573

Dentist in Cambridge | 5 Tips for Denture Wearers

Dentist in Cambridge

Taking care of your dentures can seem like an added chore. Don’t worry, with a little effort your dentures can stay clean. Here are 5 tips for keeping your dentures clean and your smile healthy.

1. Rinse Thoroughly
Prior to brushing, it helps to rinse your dentures off. Run them through water to help wash away food and other small particles. Be extra careful when handling your fragile dentures. Avoid using hot or boiling water, as that could damage your dentures.

2. Clean Your Dentures
Just as you would brush your teeth, your dentures need to be brushed as well. Never use cleaning solutions while your dentures are in. Rather, remove your dentures and carefully brush using a soft toothbrush. Avoid using whitening toothpastes or harsh cleaning materials like bleach products. Talk to our dentist about the right type of cleaner for your dentures. Using too strong a solution can cause damage to your dentures.

3. Don’t Forget to Brush Your Teeth
You still need to take care of your natural teeth. Brush your teeth with a soft toothbrush. Be gentle when brushing and cleaning your gums. Cleaning your gums will help you reduce your risk of developing an oral infection. If your toothbrush is too rough on your gums, an alternative is to use gauze. Be sure to come see us if you are experiencing gum pain and we can make recommendations.

4. Keep Them Covered
When you remove your dentures for bed, be sure to keep them in a covered container overnight. Use a denture-soaking solution to keep them clean overnight. Water works as a substitute, as your dentures need moisture to retain their shape. If you have any questions about storing your dentures, talk to us and we’ll help you.

5. Care with Adhesives
It can sometimes be difficult to remove your dentures with an adhesive. If you are having trouble, try swishing warm water or a mouthwash around your mouth. Never use any cleaning solution, tool, or foreign object to remove your dentures. Take special care to ensure the grooves of your dentures that attach to your gums are clean and free of adhesive.

When taken care of properly, your dentures will provide you with a lasting smile. Be vigilant in keeping up with cleaning your dentures. If you have any questions about caring for your dentures, get in touch with our office. We would be happy to work with you to figure out a solution for your denture concerns.

For more tips on keeping your mouth healthy or to schedule your next appointment, contact our office.

Visit Our
Cambridge Office

Cambridge, MA Dentist

763 Massachusetts Ave., Suite 1, Cambridge, MA 02139

Phone: (617) 945-1974

Email: Hello@SweetSpotDental.com

Hours:
Monday: 9:00am - 6:00pm
Tuesday: 8:00am - 5:00pm
Wednesday: 9:00am - 6:00pm
Thursday: 8:00am - 5:00pm
Friday: 8:00am - 5:00pm
Saturday: By appointment only.

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