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The Top 7 Risk Factors for Oral Cancer

oral cancerOral cavity and oropharynx cancers account for 2.9 percent of all cancers diagnosed in the United States and 1.6 percent of cancer deaths. You know your dentist is looking for cavities during regular check-ups, but you may not realize your dentist can screen for cancer at the same time. It’s estimated that approximately 49,750 people will be diagnosed with oral cancer and cancers of the throat, tonsils, and back of the tongue in 2017. Regular visits to your dentist can help you detect such cancers early, and changing a few potentially harmful habits may help reduce your chances of developing them.


Men are twice more likely to get oral cancer. The American Cancer Society attributes this to higher rates of alcohol and tobacco use by men but says more men of a younger age are being diagnosed with HPV-related forms of oral cancer.


Most people who are diagnosed with oral cancer are 55 or older, according to the American Cancer Society. HPV-related oral cancers, however, are often diagnosed in people who are younger.


Whether you smoke it or chew it, tobacco use increases your risk dramatically. Smoking can cause oral cancer, as well as cancer in other parts of the body. Pipe smokers are also at a higher risk for developing cancer in their lips. Smokeless tobacco, like chew, can lead to many issues in your mouth, the most serious being cancer of the cheeks, gums, and lips.


According to the American Cancer Society, 7 of 10 oral cancer patients are heavy drinkers. Heavy drinking, as defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), is an average of two drinks a day or more for men and an average of more than one drink a day for women. If you are a heavy drinker and a heavy smoker, your chances of developing oral cancer increase significantly.


Human Papilloma Virus (HPV):
The sexually transmitted disease is now associated with about 9,000 cases of head and neck cancer (specifically those occurring at the back of the tongue, in or around the tonsils) diagnosed each year in the United States, according to the CDC. People who are diagnosed with HPV-related head and neck cancer tend to be younger and nonsmokers. People with HPV-positive cancers have a lower risk of death or recurrence, even though these cancers are often diagnosed at a later stage because it develops in difficult-to-detect area.


People who have jobs working outside are more prone to developing lip cancer and should use UV protection.


Poor nutrition also may put you at risk for developing oral cancer. A diet low in fruits and vegetables may increase your chance of developing oral cancer, so add more color to your plate!


The American Dental Association recognizes that early oral cancer diagnoses have the potential to significantly impact treatment decisions and outcomes. The ADA also supports routine visual and tactile examinations, particularly for patients who are at risk, including those who use tobacco or who are heavy consumers of alcohol.
The dental professionals at Quince Orchard Dental Care are always willing to guide you along the way. Call us on 301-527-2727 to schedule an appointment today!


Article Source: Mouth Healthy by the ADA


There Is a Right Way to Floss and You’re Probably Not Doing It

dental floss

You brush your teeth twice a day, but flossing should be just as much a part of your daily routine. In fact, it’s critical to keeping your teeth healthy. While brushing can help erode the bacteria on some of your teeth, some areas will be overlooked if you don’t floss. This bacteria causes both gum disease and decay, and when it combines with your saliva and food, it creates plaque, a clear, colorless, sticky film that adheres to your teeth.Just imagine that when you don’t feel like flossing: bacteria throwing a house party on your teeth. Yuck! After that, it’s no surprise that it is recommended to floss twice a day, right?


So How Do You Do It?


1. Wrap the floss around your middle fingers so you can use your thumbs and forefingers to move the floss.


2. Gently push it between two teeth and use a gentle sawing motion back and forth until the floss pops down through the contact point, which is the one specific point where the teeth touch together.


3. Wrap the floss around the side of one tooth, making a C-like shape, then gently slide up and down. Do this several times, making sure to go slightly underneath the gumline, then repeat on the other side of the tooth.


4. Pull the floss out and rotate it so you’re using a clean spot.


5. Don’t stop if you start to bleed. Keep at it once a day, and in a few weeks, you’ll probably see an improvement.


Not everyone’s mouth is the same; if you have any issues that make it hard to use regular floss, you can buy floss picks, that have the floss pre-positioned on a little handle. If you have really large spaces between your teeth, keep an eye out for superfloss, which has a fuzzy portion that fits in between big spaces in your teeth and gums.


And while it doesn’t really make a difference if you floss before or after brushing your teeth, although most people prefer after. When you brush first, you’re getting more gross removal of the bacteria that’s in your mouth, so your mouth is cleaner and the floss just finishes everything off after that.


The dental professionals at Quince Orchard Dental Care are always willing to guide you along the way. Call us on 301-527-2727 to schedule an appointment today!


20 Things You Should Be Cleaning with a Toothbrush


Most of us clean using sponges, cloths, dusters, vacuums, etc. but sometimes your most effective tool is sitting right in your bathroom. Ashlee Edie, cleaning expert, shares some tips on how to effectively clean tough places with an old toothbrush.




The coarse bristles and size of a toothbrush make them perfect for cleaning stubborn, hard-to-reach places in the home like stove tops.



  • Stove tops


“Grime can quickly build up on stoves,” Edie says. “Apply some dishwashing liquid to a toothbrush and use small circular motions to buff away the dirt.” Make sure to rinse and wipe clean with a cloth.


  • Grout

“To keep grout in between tiles looking fresh, use a toothbrush to scrub a solution of bleach and water along the grout to remove any stains,” Edie says. Remember to rinse when finished.



  • Faucets


What’s that goo hiding behind and around the base of your faucet? “Mildew and bacteria can grow on faucets so use a toothbrush, with a mixture of soap and water, to thoroughly clean these,” recommends Edie.



  • Upholstery and carpet stains


A toothbrush can be used to tackle small but stubborn stains on carpets and upholstery. “Apply some stain remover to the spot and use a toothbrush to apply pressure to the stain,” Edie advises. “Scrub in circular motions to loosen the stain and repeat until it is gone.”



  • Removing crayon from the wall


“If the kids have been using the walls as a canvas again, a quick tip to remove crayon marks is to load a toothbrush with some shaving foam or toothpaste, apply to the crayon marks, and buff them away. Then, simply wipe the surface with a paper towel,” offers Edie.



  • Hair dryer, car, and bathroom vents


Lint and dust gets stuck in anything that moves air—which includes hair dryers, car vents, and even the bathroom vent. Have you ever looked up at your bathroom vent? They are usually loaded with dust. Make sure the vent is off or disconnected then remove the cover. Take outside to gently brush off or if it’s caked on you can clean it in your sink with a damp toothbrush. For a hair dryer, make sure it’s unplugged from the outlet and gently use a dry toothbrush to remove dust. Same for your car vents.



  • Computer keyboards


Computer keyboards are typically dusty and may even have crumbs or other debris lurking around the keys. A clean, soft, dry toothbrush is perfect to clean these areas. Unplug the keyboard from the computer or, if it’s a laptop, unplug the laptop. Turn the keyboard onto its side and gently brush around the keys into a trashcan or sink. Do not use any type of water or liquid on a computer keyboard.



  • Refrigerator


Using a toothbrush to get into your fridge’s plastic shelves with grooves is the best way to clean those hard-to-reach areas, says Diane Regalbuto, a housecleaning expert and owner of Betty Likes to Clean in Philadelphia and South Jersey. The same goes for the rubber seal between the door and the main part of the fridge where dust, grime and crumbs can gather.



  • Sink edges and drains


Regalbuto recommends using a toothbrush to clean undermounted sinks where the counter goes over the edge of the sink. A lot of gunk and mildew can get up in that area. The same goes for the sink overflow drain, usually a series of small holes opposite the spigot. A toothbrush with cleaner is the perfect tool to clean that area.



  • Toaster oven


Have you looked at your toaster oven lately? It’s probably full of crumbs and burnt-on junk. Regalbuto recommends a toothbrush for cleaning these areas. First unplug the oven and use a dry toothbrush to get the crumbs out and then clean the grill in the sink with soap and water. Rinse and thoroughly dry.



  • Brush your cheese grater


Give the teeth of a cheese grater a good brushing with an old toothbrush before you wash the grater or put it in the dishwasher.

This will make it easier to wash and will prevent clogs in your dishwasher drain by getting rid of bits of cheese or any other item you may have grated.



  • Clean silk from ears of corn


Before cooking shucked corn, take an old toothbrush and gently rub down the ear to brush away the remaining clingy strands of silk. Then you won’t have to brush them out from between your teeth after you eat the corn!



  • Clean and oil your waffle iron


A clean, soft toothbrush is just the right utensil to clean crumbs and burned batter from the nooks and crannies of a waffle iron. Use it to spread oil evenly on the waffle iron surface before the next use too.



  • Apply hair dye



Dyeing your hair at home? Use an old toothbrush as an applicator. It’s the perfect size and it will keep the mess to a minimum.



  • Clean gunk from appliances


Dip an old toothbrush in soapy water and use it to clean between appliance knobs and buttons, and raised-letter nameplates.



  • Scrub under your nails


It can sometimes be hard to remove the dirt and grime that builds up under your nails. Pump some soap onto an old toothbrush and use it to scrub your nails clean.



  • Tame flyaway hairs


Spray hairspray on a toothbrush that you don’t use and comb back the small hairs that always get in your face. This simple trick will give you a more put together and clean hairstyle.



  • Brush away espresso


If you’re a fan of espresso, you’re also familiar with how finely ground Italy’s favorite coffee is. To keep it from clogging up the filter screen on your espresso maker, scrub the screen gently after each use with a soft toothbrush. If any bits remain, remove them with a straight pin.



  • De-pulp juicer


It’s easy to forget that electric juicers are traps for all manner of fruit (and therefore, food) particles.


Keep it clean as a whistle to prevent bacteria buildup (and illness!) by cleaning it thoroughly: disassemble it, wipe out the pulp and discard it, and fill your kitchen sink with hot, soapy water.


Soak everything but the motor casing for 10 minutes, remove the pieces from the sink, and scrub with a soft toothbrush. Dry well, reassemble, and juice for all you’re worth!


  • Clean your veggies

Use a soft-bristled toothbrush to clean mushrooms and other sensitive vegetables before cooking. A medium- or hard-bristled brush is more suitable for potatoes.


Source: Reader’s Digest


Natural Ways To Care For Your Gums






Your pearly whites may be on point but are your gums healthy? Here are some simple at home tips that will help you get healthier gums before your next dental appointment!



  • Ginger


Ginger root is considered a healing herb. With its anti-inflammatory properties, ginger promotes healthy tissue in your mouth.



  • Apples


Eating an apple can take a while. And that’s a good thing for your mouth. The munching action spurs a cleansing action that shakes up the plaque that clings to gums and teeth. Stock up on apples, but be sure to rinse with mouthwash afterward. Even healthy foods like apples can expose your mouth to acids.



  • Onions


The raw onion is a potent bacteria-fighting food. Yes, bad breath is the enemy. But that’s why sugarless gum and mouthwash were created. Onions have an antimicrobial ingredient that kills bacteria, and, according to one study, completely wipes out four bacteria strains that lead to gum disease and cavities. Sliver them and toss the strips in your salad, on your sandwich and burger or in soups and stews.



  • Milk & Dairy (Yes, really!)


Milk, and other dairy foods such as cheese and yogurt are not only packed with bone-fortifying calcium, but also with the protein casein, which research suggests reduces acid levels in the mouth. In addition, drinking milk can neutralize acids produced by plaque bacteria. Note: Drinking milk with cereal or dessert doesn’t have the same benefit as direct consumption after eating.



  • Eat Some Cheese


No milk around? Eat a piece of cheese instead. If you can’t brush at the end of a meal, try eating a piece of Swiss or other aged cheese. It actually helps to pull away some of the plaque and food particles leftover from meals.



  • Salads & High Fiber Foods


It’s no secret that salad greens pack an all-around healthy punch, but they’re also especially successful at keeping mouths clean because they’re fiber-packed, meaning they require serious chewing to break down. The extra saliva produced by chewing neutralizes mouth bacteria. High-fiber, stringy foods like raw spinach, celery and even cooked beans offer this benefit.



  • Don’t Forget the Dentist


It’s important to visit with us regularly: every six months to be exact. This way we are able to detect any problems early on and help to keep your teeth and gums in optimal condition.



ADA Releases Six Things to Know About Your Tots’ Teeth

Tots’ TeethThe American Dental Association (ADA) has created an essential list of “tooth-truths” to help parents and caregivers stay in the know about the health of their children’s teeth.


When Teeth First Appear

Your baby is born with 20 teeth below the gums, and they usually start coming through between six months and a year. Most children have their full set of teeth by three years old.


When to Start Brushing with Toothpaste

Decay can happen as soon as teeth first appear. If you see some pearly whites peeking out when your little one smiles, it’s time to pick up a tube of fluoride


How Much Toothpaste to Use

It doesn’t take much to clean your child’s teeth. Until you’re comfortable that your child can brush on his or her own, continue to brush your child’s teeth twice a day with a child-size toothbrush. If your child is three or younger, use a smear of toothpaste (about the size of a grain of rice). For children three or older, a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste will do.


When to Schedule Your Baby’s First Dental Visit It’s another milestone in a year of exciting firsts. Your child’s first dental visit should take place after their first tooth appears, but no later than the first birthday. Why so early? As soon as your baby has teeth, they can get cavities.


When to Start Flossing

It doesn’t matter if you floss your child’s teeth before or after they brush as long as you clean between any teeth that touch. You can use child-friendly plastic flossing tools to more easily floss your child’s teeth until your child learns to do it.


Water Works
When your child has worked up a thirst, water is the best beverage to offer – especially if it has fluoride! Drinking water with fluoride (also known as “nature’s cavity fighter”) has been shown to reduce cavities by 25 percent.


Article source:


5 Small Diet Changes That Will Keep Your Teeth Healthy

Painful ToothacheNothing ruins your day like a toothache. It can be excruciating and even more painful given the often costly business of relieving it.


February 9 marked National Toothache Day, which was designed to help people make small changes to avoid irksome tooth pain. Any of our Board-Certified Dentists at Quince Orchard Dental Care will tell you this: the first place to start is your diet, which can significantly affect your oral health.
Here are five easy ways to change your diet which our dentists believe will help you to maintain healthy teeth:


1. Fancy a morning coffee? Just stick to milk
Drinks like coffee, tea and alcohol can lead to permanent stains on your teeth – and, in particular, there are some tannic acids in coffee that can affect the appearance of tooth enamel and how white your teeth are. Milk is an excellent source of calcium, which can help to strengthen your bones and teeth. Try and refrain from that morning coffee and stick to a refreshing glass of milk instead.


2. Be wary of cereals
Although some cereals can be good sources of fiber and iron, many are also very high in sugar, meaning you are likely damaging your teeth right from the beginning of your day. Good alternatives would be basics such as rolled oats, or Greek-style yogurt with fruit and nuts, which is low in sugar and high in calcium.


3. Keep your fruit and vegetables crunchy
Crunchy vegetables such as carrots and celery contain a lot of water, which is good for your oral health, as they can stimulate the flow of saliva and scrub the surfaces of your teeth. Meanwhile, crunchy fruit like apples are high in fiber, which means it helps to combat plaque and to keep your breath fresh. Avoid fruits such as oranges, which are loaded with citric acid – acids are the number one cause of enamel erosion, which weakens tooth enamel and makes someone more likely to develop tooth cavities.


4. Choose water over fizzy and energy drinks
Many energy drinks are very high in sugar, with some brands containing up to eight teaspoons in one serving. And fizzy sports and energy drinks contain acids which also attack and damage tooth enamel. This is also true for diet drinks which people often think are a healthier alternative. On the other hand, drinking water helps to flush out any foods that are stuck in your teeth thus preventing decay caused by food substances being stuck in your teeth regularly. If you insist on having a fizzy or energy drink, make sure you use a straw to cut down contact with your teeth.


5. Think about your baking
If you’re a keen baker, it’s likely many of your dishes will be high in sugar. You could consider replacing this sugar with a natural sweet option, such as fruit, unsweetened applesauce or dairy.


There are, of course, many other dietary changes which you can make to ensure you have a healthy mouth.


Your dental hygiene should always be a priority.


The experts at Quince Orchard Dental Care can design a plan that will ensure you always have a bright smile and healthy mouth. When you visit, we will discuss other ways in which you can maintain a healthy mouth, now and for years to come.


Our dental professionals are always willing to guide you along the way. Call us to schedule an appointment today!


Looking After Your Teeth: Five New Year’s Resolutions For A Healthier Mouth

by Amy Freeman

We all make new year’s resolutions, but many of us are not likely to follow through. Turning over a new leaf in the New Year can be tricky, but finding a way to stick with it is important when that new leaf benefits your health. If you want to take better care when looking after your teeth and gums this year, these five resolutions can keep you diligent:

Schedule a Dental Appointment

If it’s been awhile since you’ve seen a dentist, you’re not alone. About one-third of people in the U.S. don’t see a dentist yearly, according to the American Dental Association (ADA) Mouth Healthy site. But booking this appointment is one of the most important things you can do when looking after your teeth. According to the ADA, some conditions – such as sensitivity in the teeth or bleeding gums – are sure signs that it’s time to see a dentist. Even if your teeth look and feel fine, enter a reminder in your phone or calendar for February 1 so that you can call your dentist on February 2 for an appointment.

To make the process of scheduling visits easier, book your next one before you leave their office. Most dentists send out reminder cards a week prior or call a day before your appointment; check that yours does.

Commit to Flossing

Brushing your teeth twice a day isn’t enough to keep plaque from building up on your teeth, or to completely remove bits of food from your mouth. To take the best care of your teeth, you need to floss too. If you’re not in the habit of flossing, the new year is a great time to start.

One way to make it easier to remember is putting a container of floss on top of or directly next to your toothpaste. Position the container so that you have to touch it when taking your toothpaste out of the drawer or cabinet. Stash another container of floss in your purse or desk drawer at work, so that you can floss on the go if you forget to do it at home.

Cut Back on Sugar

A study published in BMC Public Health in September 2014 confirmed a direct link between the amount of sugar a person eats and the amount of tooth decay he has. Cutting back on sugar can cut your risk for tooth decay considerably. The most convenient way to cut back on sugar is to reduce the number of sugary treats you buy. Simple swaps will help you cut back as well: Drink sugar-free seltzer water instead of soda, or chew a piece of sugar-free gum when you have a craving for something sweet.

Kick the Habit

Smoking doubles your risk for gum disease, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and is linked to a host of other health issues. Pick a date to give up the habit, get rid of all the tobacco products from your home and solicit the support of your friends and family to help you quit. There will be cravings along the way, so it’s important to find a healthy activity to engage in when a craving kicks in. Feel free to see your general practitioner if you struggle to curb the addiction by yourself.

Eat More Mouth-Healthy Foods

When you cut back on sugar, resolve to add more orally healthy foods to your diet to solidify your diet’s benefit to your teeth. Dairy products, which are high in calcium, are great for your teeth, as are fibrous foods that call up saliva and scrub away plaque and other food bits.

Making your new year’s resolutions as easy as possible to stick with will help you keep them. Take things one step at a time, and if you forget to floss one day or eat a big piece of caramel the next, don’t give up. Remember that there’s always tomorrow!


Original Article: Colgate


5 New Year’s Resolutions For Homeowners

shutterstock_559740163Today we live in a world of instant gratification. It seems almost anything you want you can get – often within 24 hours. Technology has made most of us expect immediate access to information, products and services. In response, at Quince Orchard Dental Care, our team is using technology to meet these new expectations. 


When it came to determining what technology to employ, we started with the goal of meeting and exceeding 0ur patients’ expectations. We met as a team to discuss and brainstorm what would enable patients to make great decisions about their oral health and how we could use technology to help them. The objective was to basically give our patients immediate access to information that is clear and simple to understand.


The two main technologies we rely on to help patients gain clarity are intra-oral photos and digital x-rays. During our routine recare appointments if a cavity is detected or a suspicious area is seen we always take intra-oral pictures to help our patients visualize what we are diagnosing. When needed, we take digital x-rays to see what can’t be seen with the naked eye. Digital x-rays have less radiation than traditional x-rays and are viewed immediately.


Some other state-of-the-art dental tech products we use are 3D digital CT scans for complex dental cases. Incorporated in our dental software is a Logicon caries detector program that helps us to detect cavities in between teeth on the digital x-rays. We also have a handheld instrument called a Diagnodent caries detector that we use intraorally to help us with diagnosing caries as well.


One technology we will incorporate soon at our practice is a scanner for digital impressions. We haven’t met a patient who says they love when we need to take impressions. We understand they can be uncomfortable and annoying and we will be doing something about it!


Another way we have incorporated technology is in helping our patients with financial solutions. At Quince Orchard Dental Care, we understand that sometimes cost can be a barrier to oral health. We also understand that sometimes, as a patient, you don’t plan for dentistry-related costs.


We have partnered with a company to help us check your eligibility and get a detailed insurance breakdown for each of our patients prior to their visit. We also offer third party financing with CareCredit. The simple CareCredit pre-approval application can be completed in less than 10 minutes. This financial option can provide patients with an opportunity to move forward with the treatment they need without the pressure of upfront costs.


It’s an exciting time to be in dentistry. Technology will continue to give our practice new and exciting ways to deliver treatment in a responsive, customized and personal way which will continue to create happier and healthier patients. 


Five Steps to Flossing Your Teeth


At Quince Orchard Dental Care we always tell our patients to floss so we wanted to just do a quick review on flossing to make sure everyone is flossing correctly. Be patient with yourself and don’t give up! It takes time to get the hang of flossing.


If you floss with your fingernail, paperclips, or other sharp objects, you risk gauging your gums and causing damage. Only one tool can help you, Floss – waxed or unwaxed.
Our doctors and hygienists can show you the right way to floss but here are some tips that may help you at home.


  1. Break off about 18 inches of floss and wind most of it around one of your index fingers. Wind the rest of the floss around a finger on your other hand (usually the index finger). This finger will take up the used floss.
  2. Hold the floss tightly between your thumbs and forefingers. Guide the floss between your teeth, using a gentle rubbing motion. To avoid injuring your gums, never snap the floss into gum tissue.
  3. When the floss reaches the gum line, curve it into the “C” Shape against one tooth. Gently slide it into the space between the gum and the tooth.
  4. Hold the floss tightly against the tooth. Gently rub the side of the tooth with an up-and-down motion. Try not to use a sawing motion once the floss is worked into place.
  5. Repeat the method on the rest of your teeth. As you move from tooth to tooth, unwind the clean floss with one finger and take up the used floss with the finger on the other hand. Do not forget to floss the back side of the last tooth.

Teething and Your Baby: Symptoms and Remedies


It’s not hard to tell when your baby starts teething. He or she may be irritable during the day and sleepless at night. (And you might be too!) Here’s what to expect and how to keep your baby comfortable.


Your baby was born with all 20 primary teeth below their gum line. They typically start to come through between 6 and 12 months. Children usually have their full set of baby teeth in place by age 3.



Teething Symptoms


What’s normal?

  • Fussiness
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Irritability
  • Loss of appetite
  • Drooling more than usual

What’s not normal?

  • Fever
  • Diarrhea
  • Rash

If your baby has any of these symptoms while teething and continues to be cranky and uncomfortable, call your pediatrician.


How to Soothe a Teething Baby


Your child may have sore or tender gums when teeth begin to erupt. Gently rubbing their gums with a clean finger, a small cool spoon, or a moist gauze pad can be soothing. A clean teething ring for your child to chew on may also help.


Are Numbing Gels or Teething Tablets Safe For My Baby?


The Food and Drug Administration recommends that parents and caregivers not use benzocaine products for children younger than 2, except under the advice and supervision of a health care professional. Benzocaine is an over-the-counter anesthetic, which the FDA notes are usually under the product names Anbesol, Hurricaine, Orajel, Baby Orajel and Orabase. Benzocaine has been associated with a rare but serious—and sometimes fatal—condition called methemoglobinemia, a disorder in which the amount of oxygen carried through the blood stream is greatly reduced.


In September 2016, the FDA recommended that parents stop using homeopathic teething tablets and gels. “Homeopathic teething tablets and gels have not been evaluated or approved by the FDA for safety or efficacy,” the FDA says. “The agency is also not aware of any proven health benefit of the products, which are labeled to relieve teething symptoms in children.”


The FDA states these products are distributed by CVS, Hyland’s and possibly others, and are sold in retail stores and online.


“Consumers should seek medical care immediately if their child experiences seizures, difficulty breathing, lethargy, excessive sleepiness, muscle weakness, skin flushing, constipation, difficulty urinating, or agitation after using homeopathic teething tablets or gels,” the FDA states.


If you have any questions about how to relieve your child’s teething symptoms, talk to our dentists and your pediatrician.