The ADA: Promoting Dental Health Since 1859

American Dental Association Royal Oak

This post from the team at Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry in Royal Oak MI is about the American Dental Association. You have probably seen the ADA symbol on toothpaste and floss—but what else do you know about this dental institution?

The ADA’s self-proclaimed purpose is to improve the level of public oral health by supporting the dental industry through not-for-profit federal, state, and local chapters. It was established in 1859 and is run by its members, which currently total over 160,000.

The ADA Seal of Acceptance is not an endorsement of a product per se, but rather is a validation of the assertions made by said product. Companies who want the ADA seal for a product must submit proof of rigorous scientific testing. Once submitted, the ADA re-tests the product to further verify results. There are currently over 300 products with the ADA certification.

The ADA does more than analyze dental products. Here are some other ways the ADA works to accomplish its mission:

  • Provides resources to support dentists and their practices
  • Educates the public about oral health
  • Works to expand access to dental care
  • Offers guidance on essential issues that affect the dental industry
  • Collaborates with other organizations on scientific research projects and public health initiatives
  • Offers scholarships to dental students

At Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry in Royal Oak MI, we work hard to provide the best dental care possible. Our services include general and cosmetic dentistry. Schedule your next checkup with us today.

Contact Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry:

248-541-8770

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

940 E 11 Mile Rd
Royal Oak, Michigan
48067

 

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Quality Dental Care in Royal Oak: A Responsible Investment

Royal Oak affordable family dentist dental care in royal oak

Preparing to pay for critical dental work can be a daunting undertaking. The good news is that the cost of treatment may be far less than you imagined. Knowing your needs is crucial to planning your budget for dental work.

Trying to Compare

Comparing the price of a dental crown for molars versus the price of a dental crown for smaller teeth or versus a root canal or double root canal can be difficult to extract from many dental facilities in and around Royal Oak, Michigan. Getting the current pricing and understanding the role insurance will help with your out-of-pocket-expenses for your dental visit. To get a better understanding, start by calling Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry at 248-541-8770 at your earliest convenience. Our caring staff can explain pricing and schedule initial consultation appointments.

Identify Affordable Dental Care in Royal Oak

Steven Gustafson, DDS, has been providing quality dental care in Royal Oak since 1984. While the cost of specialized treatment can fluctuate up and down depending on the price of supplies, equipment, and staffing overhead, Dr. Gustafson works very hard to maintain affordable, quality care for our unique community in three ways:

  1. Through state-of-the-art training and up-to-date education for staff members.
  2. Through precision work and personal dental care for each and every patient.
  3. Through business management best practices to rein in costs.

The Responsible Investment

Take the responsible step for your comfort, health, and confidence. Don’t be afraid to schedule dentures, general dentistry, cosmetic dentistry, Invisalign, or dental implants. We want you to be confident that affordable, quality dental care in Royal Oak is manageable and accessible. We want you to understand the importance of immediate care rather than putting it off until it gets more expensive.

Contact Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry:

248-541-8770

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

940 E 11 Mile Rd
Royal Oak, Michigan
48067


Oral Health in Royal Oak: When It’s Better Not To Brush

enamel erosion Detroit Oral Health in Royal Oak

Though thin and partially translucent, tooth enamel is the hardest substance in the body and has the critical job of preserving teeth from constant use and the continual assault of chemicals in food and drink. Enamel also safeguards tooth nerves from hot and cold food and beverages. That’s why enamel loss often causes tooth sensitivity. Cuts heal. Bruises fade. Broken bones mend. The body’s ability to heal itself is truly amazing. But tooth enamel is different. When it’s gone, it’s gone.

The team at Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry encourages our patients to protect their tooth enamel for a lifetime of oral health in Royal Oak. This may seem counter-intuitive, but sometimes it is better not to brush immediately after eating. Specifically, after eating acidic items. The acid weakens the enamel which can be further weakened by brushing. Waiting 60 minutes will allow the acid to dilute. Rinsing immediately after eating acidic foods is helpful, however, because it washes away some food particles and speeds up the dilution of the acid.

Some people don’t realize that dry mouth can cause or exacerbate enamel erosion. The calcium and phosphate in saliva protects your enamel. When there is little saliva, the enamel is left exposed. Chewing stimulates saliva production but constant snacking is not the answer for dry mouth. Chewing sugar-free gum and sipping water periodically can stimulate saliva production between meals without increasing the risk of or upping your calorie intake.

In addition, tooth grinding wears enamel away. If you are one of the many Royal Oak residents who grinds their teeth at night, it’s critical to get a mouth guard for the sake of your oral health in Royal Oak. People who grind their teeth are at a high risk for enamel erosion and the tooth decay that can follow. Athletes should also protect their teeth on the playing field with a mouth guard. For more specifics, meet with Dr. Steven Gustafson at Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry about custom mouth guards.

If you sip soda, tea, or coffee all day, we suggest you switch to water to halt any enamel erosion that has already transpired. It may be a hard change to make – but if you are successful – your teeth will thank you for it. Using teeth as tools can hurt enamel, as well. Take a moment to fetch scissors before tearing a package or ripping duct tape with your teeth. Do you really want to take a chance on chipping a tooth just to open a package of lunch meat?

If you have already experienced enamel erosion or other dental issues, Dr. Steven Gustafson can help you safeguard what is left of your oral health in Royal Oak. You can also let us know if you are experiencing a dental emergency. To schedule a comprehensive examination, contact Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry in Royal Oak at 248-541-8770!

Contact Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry:

248-541-8770

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

940 E 11 Mile Rd
Royal Oak, Michigan
48067


No Cavities? Thank Your Parents

how to prevent cavities Royal Oak

At Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry in Royal Oak MI, we stay abreast of new discoveries in the exciting field of dentistry and like to share interesting facts with our patients. This blog post focuses on new findings in an intriguing field of research: genetic dentistry.

“About 60% of the risk for tooth decay appears to be due to genetic factors,” said Mary L. Marazita, director of the Center for Craniofacial and Dental Genetics at the University of Pittsburgh School of Dental Medicine.1

Whoa! Did she say 60%? That’s huge. You might be thinking: “That’s why I brush and floss but still get cavities.” Or, better yet, you might be thinking, “No wonder I have never had a cavity, even though I eat candy often and occasionally go to bed without brushing.”

A recent article on CNN.com highlights tooth decay risk factors that have a genetic link1:

Enamel Strength
Your genes play an important role in the composition of your tooth enamel. Soft enamel is more cavity prone.

Sugar Cravings
Whether or not you love sugar has a genetic basis. Now you can blame your parents if you pop M&Ms all day. (But it still isn’t good for your teeth or waistline!)

Chemical Composition of Saliva

Your saliva can protect against cavities – if it properly metabolizes essential minerals and vitamins like calcium, potassium, iron, and Vitamin C. Your genes impact your saliva’s ability to prevent decay.

Immune Response to Bacteria
We don’t like to think about the harmful bacteria in our mouth, but hopefully our immune system is ever-vigilant at fighting their constant attempts to cause decay and gum disease. The durability of your immune system is determined, in part, by genetics.

In the next few decades, scientists in the emerging specialty of genetic dentistry may play a key role in the development of new cavity prevention techniques.

The purpose of this article is not to encourage Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry patients to be lax about oral hygiene if their parents have strong teeth. Nor to cause those whose teeth decay easily to throw their hands up in despair and resign themselves to a toothless mouth.

Proper oral hygiene is critical for all of us, regardless of our genetic predisposition to tooth decay. You have the ability to be forward-thinking about your oral health, regardless of the genes you inherited. Whether you have frequent dental check-ups, consistent fluoride intake, effective brushing and flossing techniques, and proper nutrition, is up to you.

At Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry in Royal Oak MI, the health of your smile is our number one concern. Our services include general and cosmetic dentistry. Schedule your next checkup with us today.

1Paul Frysh, “Bad teeth? Blame your genes,” CNN, July 3, 2014, http://www.cnn.com/2014/07/03/health/tooth-decay-causes/, accessed on June 24, 2015

Contact Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry:

248-541-8770

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

940 E 11 Mile Rd
Royal Oak, Michigan
48067

 

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Questions To Ask Your Dentist

Questions To Ask Your Royal Oak DentistSometimes people research their mechanic or hairdresser more thoroughly than their dentists. Isn’t dental care more important than the condition of your car or the style of your hair? At Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry in Royal Oak MI, we love to answer questions about all facets of dentistry.

You probably have questions about the types of care your dentist offers. These may include crowns, braces, fillings, dental bridges, root canals, dental bonding, white fillings, and gum contouring. These services may not be critical to you now, but it is a good idea to have an understanding of your options.

If you are contemplating smile restoration, tooth implants, or tooth whitening, discuss cosmetic dentistry services with your dentist. Look at before and after pictures and ask your dentist which procedures may be right for you.

At Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry in Royal Oak MI, the dental health of our patients is always our top priority. We offer general and cosmetic dentistry. Schedule your next appointment today.

Contact Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry:

248-541-8770

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

940 E 11 Mile Rd
Royal Oak, Michigan
48067

 

ArticleID 425

The Future Of Tooth Decay

The Future Of Tooth Decay In Royal Oak

Dental patients may wonder what would happen if they didn’t seek quality dental care on a regular basis. From our perspective at Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry in Royal Oak MI, the answer isn’t pretty.

A common result of untreated cavities are abscesses. A tooth abscess is an infection near the root of the tooth or between the gum and the tooth. This collection of pus can be very uncomfortable, either causing a shooting pain or a dull throbbing pain. You may also experience bad breath, fever, swollen neck glands, and feelings of general discomfort associated with the infection.

Tooth abscesses can also be caused by a chip or a crack in the tooth that allows bacteria to enter.

To avoid unpleasant dental problems like abscesses, have regular check-ups and cleanings at Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry. That way, you can keep your mouth in peak health.

At Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry in Royal Oak MI, our services include general and cosmetic dentistry. Schedule an appointment with us today.

Contact Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry:

248-284-4879

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

940 E 11 Mile Rd
Royal Oak, Michigan
48067

 

ArticleID 4071

Infancy Through Childhood: Instill Good Brushing Habits

infant dental exam Royal Oak

New parents may be surprised by the American Dental Association’s recommendations on infant oral care. Parents are advised to begin brushing their baby’s teeth as soon as the first ones emerge. At Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry in Royal Oak MI we endorse that recommdation, and remind new parents that brand-new teeth are just as vulnerable to tooth decay as older teeth.

Parents are encouraged to use a cloth and a smidgen of toothpaste (about the size of a grain of rice) to wipe each tooth. As more teeth come through, it’s even more important for them to be brushed after each meal or, at least twice a day.

It is essential to select the proper toothbrush, in order to make brushing time as pleasant as possible. You can buy an infant-sized, soft-bristled brush at most grocery stores. Also, there are circle and triangular-shaped brushes that allow your toddler to walk around with their brush with less chance of injury in case of a fall.

If your toddler doesn’t like the taste of toothpaste, brush with water for a while. The goal is to remove food bits that will create bacteria followed by plaque and then cavities.

When two teeth touch, it’s time to floss. Flossing is important to make sure no food is lodged between the teeth. Proper flossing requires fine motor skills which most kids don’t develop until about the age six or seven. Parents need to assist with flossing until they are sure their child can do it effectively.

Until the child is old enough to properly brush his or her teeth, they should receive adult supervision and guidance. Instilling the proper brushing and flossing practices will reap lifelong benefits. It may be time-consuming, but remember that it’s making a daily habit that will protect their dental health for a lifetime. Also, dental expenses related to poor oral hygiene will be avoided.

Your child’s first dental visit should be within six months of the first tooth appearing and no later than their first birthday. It may seem early, but most parents bring their child to the pediatrician at that age, and teeth are no different. You can count on us to look out for potential problems and guide you about how to help your child keep a healthy smile.

At Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry in Royal Oak MI, we provide general dentistry for the entire family. Services also include cosmetic dentistry. Schedule an appointment with us today.

Contact Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry:

248-541-8770

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

940 E 11 Mile Rd
Royal Oak, Michigan
48067

 

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Replace Old Silver Fillings

white fillings Royal Oak

Superficial cuts in the skin subside without a trace, infections are killed with antibiotics, broken bones mend, and inflamed tissues subside. Our teeth, unfortunately, can’t regenerate. Decay can be halted in its progress, but scientists are still years away from actual enamel regeneration. That’s why the team at Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry strongly emphasizes preventative dentistry.

The healthiest mouths have all teeth intact and free of current or former dental caries. But how many smiles can boast such an admirable record? Very few.

The stark reality is that most people get one or more cavities over the course of their lifetime.

In fact, most individuals probably don’t even know someone who has never had a cavity. Tooth decay is second only to the common cold as the most prevalent health issue in childhood. When we reach middle age, many of us have even had a root canal or two.

Restorations Have Come a Long Way
Modern restorations have many advantages over those in years past. There are stronger and more natural-looking materials. Many of our patients who have not had a filling for a while, are not aware that white fillings are available. You can even replace old amalgam fillings with white fillings and give your mouth a makeover!

As we said before, when a tooth is by injury or decay, it is never exactly the way it was before. But now, with modern fillings and crowns, it can regain strength and beauty.

At Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry in Royal Oak, services include general and cosmetic dentistry. Schedule an appointment with us today.

Contact Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry:

248-541-8770

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

940 E 11 Mile Rd
Royal Oak, Michigan
48067

 

ArticleID 7296

Does Your Teen Have Unique Dental Challenges?

adolescent dental health

When it comes to oral health, the team at Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry in Royal Oak MI considers adolescence is a pivotal time. On the upside, the last of the permanent teeth come in providing young men and women with their adult smile. Good habits can be forged and reinforced. Teeth can be corrected with orthodontia, providing increased confidence when it is often sorely needed.

On the downside, some teenagers take up habits that are harmful to their teeth. Adolescents often don’t understand the importance of proper dental hygiene and how it affects lifelong oral health. Some young folks develop cavities that can cause recurring dental troubles in later years.

Unfortunately, eating disorders are far too common among teenagers. Bulimia can cause enamel erosion, decay, and even complete tooth loss. We strongly advise parents to intervene immediately and seek appropriate medical care if they suspect their teen has an eating disorder.

The importance of diet cannot be overstated. Adolescence is a time when many young men and women decrease their calcium intake—a danger to both bones and teeth. The consumption of energy drinks and sugared soda also contribute to tooth and gum problems in teenagers.

In addition, youth that use tobacco and illegal drugs have an increased risk of dental caries and oral cancer. Oral piercings can be extremely harmful. The health risks include tooth and gum damage, infection, allergic reactions, nerve damage, and excessive swelling that can block airways.

Teens who are undergoing orthodontic treatment often have a difficult time thoroughly cleaning their teeth. It is a challenge to fit toothbrush bristles and floss under dental hardware. Toothbrushes and flossing devices that squirt water can help adolescents with braces adequately clean their teeth and gums.

Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry in Royal Oak MI advises parents to make sure their adolescents receive twice-yearly dental exams and cleanings. We provide general and cosmetic dentistry. Schedule an appointment today.

Contact Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry:

248-541-8770

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

940 E 11 Mile Rd
Royal Oak, Michigan
48067

 

ArticleID 6685

All About Toothpaste

We urge all of our patients at Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry in Royal Oak MI to brush and floss their teeth at least twice a day. This very good habit is the single most important thing you can do to maintain your dental health.

What kind of toothpaste should you use? There is no one-size-fits-all product on the market. One patient might be interested in whitening toothpaste, and another may need something for sensitive teeth.

There’s an almost bewildering selection of toothpastes in the oral care section of any grocery store, from those aimed at children to so-called natural toothpastes. You want to make the best choice for your teeth, but it isn’t always easy to make up your mind.

Different types of toothpastes have specific active ingredients that make them work. Fluoride is by far the most important thing to look for. But there are many other ingredients; what follows is a rundown of the more common ones.

  • Detergents. Sodium lauryl sulfate is nearly ubiquitous, not only in toothpaste, but in other personal care products like shampoo. (Sometimes it’s called Sodium laureth sulfate or sodium lauryl ether sulfate. It’s the stuff that makes products foamy. Some people are sensitive to it, and some consumer advocacy groups say it can be hazardous. There are toothpastes that don’t have it.
  • Whiteners. The most common toothpaste whitener is hydrogen peroxide, but there are others, like polyphosphates. While they do a modest job whitening teeth, many experts agree that the whitening agents aren’t strong enough, or in contact with the teeth long enough, to do a really good job. To get really white teeth, try professional whitening from a dentist.
  • Desensitizers. Some people’s teeth are more sensitive to hot and cold foods than others. And some are more tactile-sensitive. Used on a regular basis, desensitizing toothpastes can be very effective, but it’s a good idea to get a dentist’s recommendation first.
  • Plaque fighters. A toothpaste ingredient called triclosan is believed to fight plaque and gum inflammation. While it seemed promising at first more recent studies indicate triclosan may contribute to antibiotic resistance, and disrupt hormones and the immune system.

We suggest you ask us for our recommendations, and what might be best for your particular set of teeth. Always read the label, and make sure the toothpaste you’re considering has the American Dental Association label. If you see it, it means the ADA considers it safe and effective. Whatever you choose, brush and floss twice each day!

Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry in Royal Oak MI offers general and cosmetic dentistry. Schedule your next cleaning and checkup with us today.

Contact Gustafson Morningstar Dentistry:

248-541-8770

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

940 E 11 Mile Rd
Royal Oak, Michigan
48067