Sipping, Snacking, and Tooth Decay

Sipping, Snacking, and Tooth Decay

Source: American Dental Association 

Many parents across the country will issue a common refrain at dinnertime tonight: “You’d better eat that―it’s good for you!” There’s another old favorite in the parental arsenal of dietary admonitions: “Don’t eat that—it’ll rot your teeth!”

Now more than ever, kids are faced with a bewildering array of food choices ― from fresh produce to sugar-laden processed convenience meals and snack foods. What children eat and when they eat it may affect not only their general health but also their oral health.

Americans are consuming foods and drinks high in sugar and starches more often and in larger portions than ever before. It’s clear that junk foods and drinks gradually have replaced nutritious beverages and foods for many people. For example, the average teenage boy in the U.S. consumes 81 gallons of soft drinks each year! Alarmingly, a steady diet of sugary foods and drinks can ruin teeth, especially among those who snack throughout the day. Common activities may contribute to the tendency toward tooth decay. These include ―grazing habitually on foods with minimal nutritional value, and frequently sipping on sugary drinks.

When sugar is consumed over and over again in large, often hidden amounts, the harmful effect on teeth can be dramatic. Sugar on teeth provides food for bacteria, which produce acid. The acid in turn can eat away the enamel on teeth. Almost all foods have some type of sugar that cannot and should not be eliminated from our diets. Many of these foods contain important nutrients and add enjoyment to eating. But there is a risk for tooth decay from a diet high in sugars and starches. Starches can be found in everything from bread to pretzels to salad dressing, so read labels and plan carefully for a balanced, nutritious diet for you and your kids.

Reduce your children’s risk of tooth decay:

  • Sugary foods and drinks should be consumed with meals. Saliva production increases during meals and helps neutralize acid production and rinse food particles from the mouth.
  • Limit between-meal snacks. If kids crave a snack, offer them nutritious foods.
  • If your kids chew gum, make it sugarless – Chewing sugarless gum after eating can increase saliva flow and help wash out food and decay-producing acid.
  • Monitor beverage consumption – Children should make healthy beverage choices such water and low-fat milk.
  • Help your children develop good brushing and flossing habits.
  • Schedule regular dental visits.

We're Turning 1!

4 Comments

We're Turning 1!

We saw our first patients at Penz Dental Care on September 13, 2016. As we celebrate our one-year anniversary, we’d like to take a moment to reflect on the past year and thank those who have been along for the ride.

4 Comments

Baby's First Trip to the Dentist

During a baby's dental exam, the caregiver often holds the baby in his or her lap and leans the child back while the dentist does the exam. 

During a baby's dental exam, the caregiver often holds the baby in his or her lap and leans the child back while the dentist does the exam. 

Eight-month-old Lucy's first teeth are in, which means she gets to take a seat in the dental chair!

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry and American Dental Association recommend a child's first dental visit should occur within six months after the first tooth appears, but no later than the child's first birthday. More about what to expect at your child's first dental appointment in this post.  

All done! Time to choose a prize.  

All done! Time to choose a prize.  

Need to get your child in for a check up?

We offer complimentary first dental exams for children under three years of age. Schedule your child's appointment today: call (507) 258-3300 or fill out this form.

Comment

Are You Ready for Fall Sports?

Mouthguard FB LIVE

Did you know?

  • An athlete is 60 times more likely to suffer harm to the teeth when not wearing a mouthguard (American Dental Association)? 

  • A custom made mouthguard is much less expensive than treatment for a sports related dental injury, which could cost thousands of dollars over the lifetime of the patient. 

  • While these injuries don’t happen often, when they do happen they are almost 100% preventable by wearing a custom made mouthguard.

Join us on Tuesday, August 8 at 7:30 p.m. as we talk about sports injuries and how to prevent them. We'll be LIVE with Becky Montpetit, owner of Rochester MN Moms Blog, on their Facebook page. Plus, one lucky follower will WIN a custom made athletic mouthguard! 

Comment

5 Tips for Dealing with Children's Tooth Trauma

5 Tips for Dealing with Children's Tooth Trauma

Tooth trauma can be scary, but you can help your child through it with a little knowledge.

Follow these steps if a tooth falls out:

  1. Stay calm. As you know, children look at their parents' reaction when they're scared. If you freak out, they freak out. 
     
  2. Is the tooth a baby tooth or a permanent tooth? If it's a permanent tooth, rinse the tooth with water and put it back in the socket. If it's a baby tooth, leave the tooth out and seek help from your dentist. 
     
  3. Grab some low fat milk. If you're not comfortable putting the permanent tooth in, rinse it with water and place it in a clean container with cold skim milk. Studies show lower fat content in the milk is preferable.
     
  4. Seek help from a dentist as soon as possible (within 30 to 60 minutes is best). 
     
  5. Emergency on the weekend or after hours? Call us at (507) 258-3300 and leave a message. We'll call you back ASAP.

Accidents happen. Remember to stay calm and save some skim milk in the fridge, just in case. ;-)

3 major takeaways from the sports dentistry conference

Comment

3 major takeaways from the sports dentistry conference

Academy for Sports Dentistry

Hello everyone! I recently attended the annual meeting for the Academy for Sports Dentistry in San Francisco, CA. It's an event that I have wanted to attend for years. Being a former high school and collegiate-level athlete, sports have always interested me. Now that I've turned in my cleats for a dental drill, caring for athletes' dental health is a natural fit. 

3 MAJOR TAKEAWAYS

  1. Dental sports injuries can lead to lifelong dental problems that are painful and expensive. While oral/facial injuries in sports don't happen often, when they do, most could be prevented if the athlete had been wearing a custom-fit mouthguard made by a dental professional. Studies show that "boil-and-bite" style mouthguards are not effective in preventing injuries. Unfortunately, these are the most accessible and least expensive option, which means most of our young athletes are probably wearing them. If you or your children are in contact sports, make sure they are ready for the field, court, or rink by getting a custom mouthguard made just for them.
     
  2. The acidity level of beverages consumed by young athletes (and the rest of us!) is damaging to teeth. Did you know that even bottled water can be acidic? Two major water bottle distributors increase the acidity of their water to improve the flavor. Acidity erodes enamel and creates an environment that cavity-causing bacteria thrives. Tap water and milk are your best options.
     
  3. If a tooth falls out, rinse it with water and put it back in the socket. If you're not comfortable doing that, rinse the tooth with water and place it in a clean container with cold milk (skim is preferred). Seek help from a dentist as soon as possible (within 30 to 60 minutes is best). 

Do you have questions about how to care for your teeth while playing sports? Ask me about a fully customized mouthguard, acidic beverages, or tooth trauma. I'm happy to help!

-Dr. Penz

Comment

What to Expect at Your Child's First Dental Appointment

What to Expect at Your Child's First Dental Appointment

What to expect at your child's first dental visit?

Dr. Penz will examine your child's teeth, gums, and mouth. His goal is to help maintain good oral health and to prevent problems from becoming serious, by identifying and treating them as soon as possible.

When should I bring my child for the first dental visit?

The American Dental Association and American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry say that the first dental visit should occur within six months after the baby's first tooth appears, but no later than the child's first birthday.

Sometimes children are nervous or don't want to open like Sophie in this picture. That's okay and perfectly normal. We say a lot of "ahhhh" during those appointments! ;)

Join the Team!

Join the Team!

Penz Dental Care is Hiring 

Penz Dental Care is recruiting energetic, outgoing, and detail-oriented people. Join Dr. Matt Penz to create an environment that focuses on quality patient care, top-notch service, building relationships with our patients and community, and of course fun!

OPENINGS INCLUDE:

DENTAL ASSISTANT (part-time)

Seeking energetic, hard-working, detail-oriented dental assistant to join our general dental office. Candidates must be professional, organized, positive, and possess extraordinary interpersonal skills. Must be a team player with a willingness to jump in and help wherever needed.  

Penz Dental Care offers a positive work environment with modern technology, equipment, and decor in a convenient 2nd Street SW location. We have digital x-rays and charting with Open Dental software. Patient comfort is a top priority--patients can enjoy our massaging dental chairs and under-knee pillows while receiving a variety of dental services. 

Position includes competitive wages, dental benefits, and paid holidays. Approximately 25 hours per week with option to add hours in the future.

TO APPLY

To be a part of our growing practice, please send your resume and cover letter describing why you are interested to kate@penzdentalcare.com by Wednesday, June 7. Please note that all inquiries are confidential. Thanks!

Homegrown Penz Dental Care Places Relationships and Trust at Center of Business Plan

Homegrown Penz Dental Care Places Relationships and Trust at Center of Business Plan

Youthful, patient-focused dentist Dr. Matt Penz has come home to Rochester to make his mark on the community. Penz and his wife, Kate, are sticking to their identity and core values and working to build their new practice, Penz Dental Care, patient by patient.

Every aspect of Penz Dental Care hinges around relationships and building trust in the community. It starts with the office itself. “I wanted people to feel like they were coming into a comfortable, homey, friendly environment,” Penz explained.

When walking into the Penz Dental Care office along 2nd Street SW, visitors are greeted with a cheery, bright blue and white waiting room with refurbished wood paneling and the Penz modern, tooth-like logo emblazoned on the wall. Plump couches, coffee, and HGTV help to mitigate any dental anxiety patients may be experiencing. Kate Penz herself mans the front desk and is the first point of contact. There are even massaging dental chairs to set the practice apart and help put patients’ minds at ease.

Penz says that dentistry is a very personal craft. He and his wife strive to make real human connections with their patients. “I didn’t want patients to feel like a number,” he explained.

 

READ THE FULL STORY

Want a Straighter Smile?

Want a Straighter Smile?

Penz Dental Care offers Invisalign--a series of clear retainers that help straighten teeth to improve their appearance and function. Invisalign is a great option for patients who want to enhance their smile but are not interested in traditional fixed braces with brackets and wires.

Popularity of adult orthodontic patients has increased in recent years. The American Academy of Orthodontists found a 14 percent increase in the number of adult orthodontic patients from 2010 to 2012. More adults appear to be seeking ways to improve their smile and function of their teeth than ever before. 

A big reason for the increase is technology advancements that allow for more esthetic alternatives to traditional metal braces. In addition to Invisalign, less noticeable orthodontic options include clear braces and braces placed on the back side of the teeth. 

Want to straighten your smile? Ask us about it today!

 

Dealing with Dental Anxiety

Dealing with Dental Anxiety

By Dr. Matt Penz

“Nothing personal Doc, but I HATE coming to the dentist!” 

I hear this phrase almost every day, and I understand the reasoning. It’s not everyone’s favorite place to be. That’s why I make a point to get to know my patients on a personal level. The goal is to build a trusting relationship with them as their dental care provider. If there’s trust, patients will feel less anxious while sitting in the dental chair. 

A comfortable environment helps ease anxiety, too. Patient comfort is top-of-mind at Penz Dental Care—we have a friendly staff, our waiting room feels more like a living room than a dental office, and patients always enjoy our massaging dental chairs!