Tooth-friendly

Give Thanks for your Teeth!

November 28th, 2019

Our caring team at Wellesley Dental Group wishes you and your family a Happy Thanksgiving! We hope that you have a day filled with great food and are surrounded by loved ones. Today there are lots of traditional Thanksgiving foods filled with vitamins and nutrients that may be present on your table, in addition to some that may not be the most tooth-friendly. If your looking for vitamins and nutrients to help keep your smile healthy, take a look at our breakdown of some of the hidden gems that you may be having in your Thanksgiving spread this year:

Need a Healthy Appetizer While the Food Cooks?

While the food is cooking, cheese, mixed nuts, and raw vegetables make a great snack! Cheese is is rich in calcium which is important for keeping your teeth strong. Casein, a protein within milk products, helps to prevent cavities. Nuts also contain calcium and minerals that help strengthen and remineralize your tooth enamel. Your saliva production is also at a high rate by chewing nuts and raw vegetables , which helps neutralize harmful acids and protect your teeth. Vegetables like celery and carrots also can help clean between teeth by acting like mini toothbrushes. Not to mention they contain the tooth-friendly Vitamin A.

The All-Star Turkey

The star of this holiday is thankfully packed with protein. Your mucosal tissues are also positively impacted by the iron and zinc within turkey. In addition, turkey is rich in phosphorous which is important for the health of your bones and teeth. Just keep some floss handy as turkey strands can easily find its way in-between your teeth.

The Accompanying Sides

Cranberry sauce can be the turkey's best companion. Unfortunately, lots of sugar is often added to many cranberry sauce recipes and in canned cranberries. However, try having fresh cranberries with your turkey this year. Cranberries are known to protect your teeth by blocking the harmful bacteria from their process in making cavities. They are loaded with many antioxidants which help your immune system fight against diseases.

Green beans make a great tasty side dish as they are rich in vitamins A, C, and K, which are great for gum health.

Yams and sweet potatoes also make a great side. If prepared without sugar additives, yams and sweet potatoes can be tooth-friendly as they are packed with Vitamin C, Thiamine, Niacin, Vitamin A, Fiber, and Potassium. They contain anti-inflammatory properties which can help fight periodontal disease. If your recipe does call for sugar, just be sure to rinse with water afterwards and keep up with brushing and flossing habits.

Saving the Best for Last: Dessert!


The smell of dessert alone can be the sweetest part of Thanksgiving! There's nothing like a home-made pumpkin pie, which is full of Vitamin A that strengthens tooth enamel and promotes gum health. Plus, pumpkin pie doesn't necessary need the added sugars due to its naturally sweet taste.

Another tooth-friendly dessert to try is fresh pear slices with honey yogurt dip. This recipe calls for about 2 tablespoons of honey with a sprinkle of ground cinnamon and fresh pear slices served on a platter. Pears are great for neutralizing harmful acids on tooth surfaces. Yogurt is also tooth-friendly as it contains calcium and phosphates.

Be sure to drink plenty of water throughout your meal to help wash away any leftover food particles from clinging to your teeth. Tap water contains fluoride which helps remineralize teeth and protect against cavities. Black and green tea have also been found to help kill harmful bacteria and fight against tooth decay. After a well-deserve Thanksgiving meal don't forget to brush and floss.

Moderation and healthy eating choices are key. We hope that you enjoy your Thanksgiving feast and have a great holiday!

Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group if you have any thoughts or concerns; they will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist, Dr. Derek, and Dr. Emad is happy to help with your TMJ and orthodontic needs. For wisdom teeth extractions or any other oral surgery needs, Dr. Stephens would love to help, and our gum-specialist Dr. Singh can help with your gum-related concerns.

References:

https://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/thanksgiving-slideshow

https://www.colgate.com/en-us/oral-health/basics/nutrition-and-oral-health/healthy-thanksgiving-tips-for-a-tooth-friendly-holiday-1113

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Each Bite Counts: National Nutrition Month

March 10th, 2019

The popular saying, "You are what you eat," reminds us that a healthy diet is important in order to keep our bodies healthy, vibrant, and energized. National Nutrition Month is a yearly initiative each March created by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics to educate individuals on healthy food choices. What we eat on a daily basis not only effects our general health, but also the health of our teeth and gums. In fact, the initial signs of poor nutrition can often first be seen in the mouth.

Healthy teeth aren't just a result of daily toothbrushing and flossing...nutrition plays a major role, too! It is important to include a variety of nutrient-rich foods from all the food groups.

Here are some tips to help you make informed choices on foods and beverages that are tooth-friendly and heart-healthy:

  • Be sure to educate your children about the benefits of eating smart and keeping hydrated with milk and water over sugary sodas and sports drinks. If consuming acidic foods or beverages, it is best to drink water immediately, but wait 30 minutes before brushing your teeth to avoid damaging your enamel since it is at a weakened state during this period. If you have an infant, only send them to sleep with water, as milk or juice can lead to baby bottle tooth decay.
  • Find out your nutritional and calorie needs, based on your age, gender, amount of physical activity, and other health factors. A balanced diet should include:
    • Fruits and Vegetables
      • Fruits and vegetables contain a high water and fiber content, which is beneficial for your teeth and body.
    • Whole Grains
      • Whole wheat bread
      • Brown rice
      • Oatmeal
    • Dairy (low-fat or fat-free)
      • Cheese, milk, and plain yogurt help keep your pearly whites strong!
    • Protein
      • Lean beef
      • Skinless poultry and fish
      • Eggs
      • Beans
      • Peas
      • Legumes

  • Avoid foods that harm your dental health, including empty calorie foods like candy, sweet desserts and non-nutritional snacks. Foods and drinks high in sugar, starch, and carbohydrates, stick to tooth enamel and the bacteria within your mouth consume the sugar. In return the bacteria then release harmful acid that breaks down tooth enamel. It is best to limit your consumption of soda, juice, and sweetened coffee or tea, as these choices promote tooth decay. Not to mention, coffee, tea, and wine are big culprits of causing tooth staining.
  • Nutrients including phosphorus, calcium, Vitamin D, and probiotics, help strengthen enamel and fight against tooth decay. Also, Vitamin C , found in citrus fruits, tomatoes, peppers, spinach, broccoli, and potatoes to name a few, helps promote gum health.
  • Snacking between meals can expose your teeth to more sugar and acids, so it is best to limit snacking. If you do snack, make a conscious nutritious choice, such as cheese, yogurt, fruits, vegetables, or nuts.
  • In addition to eating healthy, make sure you are staying physically active for at least 1 hour a day.
  • If you have medical conditions including gastrointestinal reflux or an eating disorder, your risk of cavities and enamel erosion may be higher.

Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group if you have any thoughts or concerns; they will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment and consultation.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist Dr. DerekDr. Emad is happy to help with your orthodontic needs. For wisdom teeth extractions or any other oral surgery needs Dr. Stephens would be more than willing to help.

References:

https://www.eatright.org/food/resources/national-nutrition-month/national-nutrition-month

https://www.colgate.com/en-us/oral-health/basics/nutrition-and-oral-health/ada-march-is-national-nutrition-month

https://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/nutrition/food-tips?utm_source=mouthhealthyorg&utm_medium=mhrotator&utm_content=nutrition-month

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September Is National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month

September 5th, 2018

What is National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month?

Did you know that over 23 million children are obese or overweight in the United States? National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month is a yearly campaign with the goal of letting individuals know the health hazards of obesity, particularly for children. Approximately one third of children in the U.S. are at risk of type-2 diabetes, high blood pressure, stroke and heart disease. But, with the knowledge and proper resources, we can make these statistics and the health of our children better. Several organizations and professionals will be joining together especially this month to raise money, conduct research, and provide treatment to help battle childhood obesity.

Childhood obesity is a serious public health problem that can have a lifelong impact on the overall health. Chronic conditions such as asthma, joint issues, Type 2 diabetes, and sleep apnea may develop at higher rates due to childhood obesity. Also, it has been found that children with obesity often are more likely to experience depression and lower self-esteem. Surprisingly, obesity is also linked with an increased risk of developing periodontal disease due to the body's inflammatory response.

Several factors play a role in childhood obesity, such as genetics, metabolism, your child's home and community environment, as well as eating behavior and level of physical activity. It is important to encourage your child to stay active, get regular sleep, and to have a tooth-friendly healthy diet. When your child's energy is balanced it allows for healthier growth.

Some ways to help prevent obesity include measuring your child's Body Mass Index (BMI). This can be done using the CDC’s Child and Teen BMI Calculator to help identify your child's risk for obesity. Most importantly, make sure your child is provided with nutritious meals that include fruits and vegetables. Now that school is starting up, make sure to pack healthy lunches, which will not only keep your teeth healthy, but also your body! Have your child avoid sugary foods and beverages. Allow a certain amount of time for your child to be involved in physical activity each day. Not to mention, be a role model by following the same guidelines!

Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and their newest addition to the team, Dr. Zarah Ali, if you have any thoughts or concerns. Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist Dr. Van. Dr. Emad is happy to help with your orthodontic needs. For wisdom teeth extractions or any other periodontal or oral surgery needs, Dr. Ghazi would be more than willing to help.

The caring team at Wellesley Dental Group will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment and consultation.

References:

https://www.colgate.com/en-us/oral-health/basics/threats-to-dental-health/ada-09-september-is-national-childhood-obesity-awareness-month

https://www.cdc.gov/features/childhoodobesity/index.html

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Tips For Cavity-Free Holidays!

December 29th, 2015

holiday-sweets-620x350

The holiday break is in full swing as we closely approach New Years! With time off from work, school, and other obligations, there's more time to relax and enjoy the company of family and friends. During this time, however, it's easy to develop a sweet-tooth. From wines to chocolates to decorated cookies and cakes, there's a lot of holiday treats that can harm your smile if you're not careful. Here are some things to keep in mind this holiday season:

1. Timing is important

It can be fine to indulge in sweets every now and then, but it's important to practice proper dental habits. Timing is also important. It helps to eat sweets and other sugary foods with meals because more saliva is produced. Saliva production is essential for washing away food particles and neutralizing acids produced by oral bacteria.

2. Avoid sticky foods

It's okay to be picky this holiday and choose foods that don't cling to teeth. Dried fruits are often a holiday favorite, but tend to stay on teeth longer than other foods. When eating sticky items, make sure to rinse and brush carefully.

3. Limit alcohol intake

Many of us are soon going to toast to the New Year! Be sure to limit your alcohol intake. Red wines can easily stain teeth. Also, too much alcohol can dry out your mouth.

4. Go easy on the hard candies

Hard candies can be more harmful for your teeth than other candies. In addition to containing a high amount of sugar, consuming hard candies puts your teeth at a higher risk for chipping or breaking.

5. Starchy foods may not be the best

Starchy foods often get trapped in your teeth. Take extra care of your teeth if you indulge in chips, cakes, and other starchy foods by flossing to remove all the food particles that can lead to plaque accumulation.

6. You can still have fun

Keep these hints in mind as you enjoy the holidays. Make conscious and tooth-friendly food choices, such as lean beef, fish, and whole grains. The holidays and the New Year are a great times to start planning healthier habits.

Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group if you have any thoughts or concerns; they will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment and consultation.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist Dr. VanDr. Emad is happy to help with your orthodontic needs. For wisdom teeth extractions or any other oral surgery needs Dr. Ghazi would be more than willing to help.

References:

http://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/holiday-foods?source=facebook&content=6_tips_cavity_free_holidays

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Back-to-School Dental Habits

August 20th, 2015

school

As hard as it is to believe that summer is almost over, it is the unfortunate truth. That means that school is back in session! As you prepare your child for their first day of school, it's that time again to start thinking of packed lunch ideas. It's important to ensure that their lunches are healthy and tooth-friendly. Dental health should play a major role when planning your child's diet. Although individuals of all ages are at risk of developing cavities, tooth decay is found to be most prevalent in school children. In fact, tooth decay is the number one chronic childhood illness.

Here are a few helpful tips for parents to promote healthy teeth at home and away from home:

Avoid Stocking Your Fridge at Home With Unhealthy Foods

A healthy diet is not only good for your child's growth and development, but it's also important for their dental health. Learning healthy habits starts at home. One of the simplest ways that you can ensure that your child is making tooth-conscious decisions at school is to provide them with balanced meals at home, including vegetables, fruits, whole grains, vitamins, dairy products, and protein.

Fruits and Dairy Products

Snacking typically involves unhealthy foods, such as chips and candy. However, there are plenty of tasty foods that are healthy for your child to munch on while at school. Items including sliced apples, bananas, carrots, celery, and other fruits and vegetables will satisfy your child's taste buds, while also supplying a wealth of nutrients beneficial for their teeth. Not to mention, diary products including milk and cheese are great options to help their tooth enamel stay healthy and strong.

Say NO to Sticky and Sugary Foods/Beverages

Even though sweets can be tempting, it's no denying the fact that sugar is a culprit of cavities. Typically, foods that are sticky like gummy bears and other candies are full of sugar and easily become lodged between teeth, making them more susceptible to decay. Avoid packing sugary items and desserts, including cookies. Don't forget, juice, sodas, and sports drinks can be just as harmful to teeth, as they can be high in sugar and acidity. Also, be sure to inform your child of the dangers of vending machines! Vending machines often house many unhealthy snacks that promote cavities.

Practice and Promote Proper Dental Care

Children learn and take after their parents. It is important to make your child's teeth cleaning routines both fun and memorable. Instill healthy dental habits at home and teach them the steps to maintaining healthy pearly whites. They will use these habits throughout the rest of their lives!

Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group if you have any thoughts or concerns; they will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment and consultation.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist Dr. VanDr. Emad is happy to help with your orthodontic needs. For wisdom teeth extractions or any other oral surgery needs Dr. Ghazi would be more than willing to help.

References:

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/07/150731182845.htm

http://www.rch.org.au/uploadedImages/Main/Content/ccch/teacher%20rounded.jpg

Summertime in the City: What's Healthy and What's Not

June 2nd, 2015

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June is finally here and it will be hard for many of us to resist a cold drink on a hot summer day. With the many family barbecues and outings, you're sure to be in for a treat this summer. During the warmer months, there are many tasty foods and drinks at our convenience. However, some of these items aren’t so tooth-friendly. As we all know, it is important to limit the amount of sugary foods and drinks we intake to ensure a healthy smile. For the health of your mouth, which links to your overall health, try adding these healthy options to your plate and glass this summer:

Drink, Drink, and Drink more water:

A nice glass of water can be a refreshing drink as you relax by the poolside. Water is important for staying hydrated, especially when your active and the sun is shining. Your smile will also thank you if you rinse your mouth with water after meals. Water, particularly tap water, even has the benefit of containing fluoride.

Watermelon:

Watermelon, made of 92% water, is another tasty  and healthy snack that will keep you hydrated this summer. It contains  lycopene, which helps keep skin protected. Also, many foods that are mainly composed of water have fewer calories. Your kids may even enjoy making watermelon popsicles!

Milk:

Milk is a great alternative to sugary drinks because it has been found to reduce levels of acid produced by plaque bacteria. Milk helps remineralize teeth by providing calcium to keep your teeth strong.

Sugar-Free Gum:

Chewing sugar-free gum can help to stimulate saliva flow and ultimately help to wash away left behind foods. However, it is not clear whether or not xylitol, commonly found in sugar-free gum, actually lowers the risk of developing dental cavities.

Strawberries:

Strawberries are in season and packed with healthy ingredients. Strawberries contain malic acid, which is known to whiten enamel. They also contain many antioxidants and vitamin C, which can help to regulate blood pressure and cholesterol, and promote eye health.

Cheese:

Cheese is full of calcium, the protein casein, and vitamin D, all good for the health of your teeth. Researchers have discovered that cheese helps increases the pH levels of dental plaque, helping to reduce tooth decay.

Pears:

Pears contain a wealth of fiber that will benefit your teeth. They help to produce saliva and lower plaque levels in the mouth.

Apples:

Crispy apples are full of vitamins and nutrients. Full of water and lots of fiber, apples help to scrub and clean the surface of your teeth.

Vegetables:

Veggies ranging from carrots rich in Vitamin A to dark leafy greens rich in iron, can make a great snack to chew on. Including vegetables in your diet is essential for the health of your teeth and body.

Cranberries:

Research has suggested that cranberries help lower the risk of cavities by helping to keep plaque from sticking to teeth. But, you may want to pay attention to the labels on cranberry products, as many of them can contain added sugars to compensate for their naturally tart flavor.

 

Some foods and drinks that are hard-to-resist, but should be avoided to keep strong and healthy teeth, include:

 

Soft Drinks, Sports Drinks, Sweet Tea, and Juice: Drinking a cold soda may sound refreshing, but it is damaging to tooth enamel. It can also dehydrate your body and make you feel more thirsty. Even sports drinks, artificially sweetened drinks, and concentrated fruit juice contain sugars for the bacteria in dental plaque to feed on and produce harmful acids. The acid then tears away at tooth enamel and can eventually lead to tooth decay. Highly acidic drinks can even cause heartburn and stomach pain. Sipping on these drinks throughout the day rather than at meal times should also be avoided because saliva production is not at its peak. Saliva is important for washing away bacteria and food particles.

Ice Cream:

The many flavors of ice cream are delicious, but unfortunately is full of sugar. Some individuals may also experience tooth sensitivity. Sensitive teeth results when the dentin underneath tooth enamel becomes exposed. This can cause pain, but can be treated. If you do have a taste for ice cream, try and select ice cream with less sugar.

Citrus Fruits:

As we all know, limes, lemons, oranges, and grapefruits are very acidic. These fruits contain citric acid and can be damaging to teeth if consumed frequently.

Vinegar:

A common practice, but an unhealthy one, is to mix vegetables with vinegar. This acidic combination can erode tooth enamel. Pickles are also very acidic.

Granola and Energy Bars:

These items may appear to be good for teeth, but often the dried fruit and other ingredients can be sticky, chewy, and hard to get off of teeth.

Candy: 

We all know that candy contains a lot of sugar, and should be avoided for the protection of your smile.

 

It is important to remember that if you do choose some of the not-so-healthy foods and beverages, consume them in moderation. Also, avoid snacking between meals, as acids can stick around for up to 20 minutes after eating. Not to mention, be mindful of the dyes used in many foods and beverages that can cause tooth discoloration. Practice good oral health habits and lean more towards a tooth-friendly diet.

Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group if you have any thoughts or concerns; they will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment and consultation.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist Dr. VanDr. Emad is happy to help with your orthodontic needs. For wisdom teeth extractions or any other oral surgery needs Dr. Ghazi would be more than willing to help.

References:

http://www.therabreath.com/articles/blog/fresh-breath-happenings/teeth-friendly-summer-food-ideas-34659.asp

http://greatist.com/health/healthy-teeth-foods

http://www.thekitchn.com/recipe-watermelon-popsicles-10713

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Quick Tips from the Tooth Fairy

August 28th, 2013

As a parent with a busy schedule, it can get tough monitoring and helping with the care of a child’s oral health. However, a child’s maintenance of good oral hygiene is extremely important, not just for their oral health but also for their overall health. On top of this week’s grocery list and the errands that need to be completed, we’ll throw in just a few more reminders and tips on the care of a child’s teeth.

 

  • Although work schedules can get overwhelming, a great and healthy way to spend time with the kids is to join them while they brush and floss. Children learn by example, and a great way for them to pick up good oral hygiene is if their parents show them great brushing and flossing techniques.

 

  • Keep track of times when your child demonstrates good oral hygiene. A fun way to get children to stick to good oral care is to create a calendar that can track their oral health. Hang the calendar in the bathroom and post a gold star or a fun sticker on days when they did a great job brushing and flossing their teeth. This is can get children excited about maintain good oral health and is a wonderful way to let their dentist know how they are doing!

 

  • There have been recent studies showing that bacteria responsible for tooth decay can be transferred when parents clean their child’s pacifier or bottle nipple. It’s best to clean these items in warm, soapy water and to avoid sharing food and drinks and children.

 

  • It is no secret that children love to get their hands on sweets. However, sugar-heavy foods can end up creating an environment that is optimal for the growth of tooth decay-causing bacteria. Try to opt for products containing xylitol, which is a tooth-friendly, nonfermentable sugar alcohol that does not get converted in the mouth to acids like regular sugars. It can reduce the levels of bacteria in saliva and can also act against some of the bacteria responsible for ear infections!

Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group if you have any thoughts or concerns; they will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com

References:

 

http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-996-XYLITOL.aspx?activeIngredientId=996&activeIngredientName=XYLITOL

 

http://www.ncohf.org/resources/parents-corner

 

http://www.ada.org/news/8582.aspx

 

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