What’s in Store for National Children’s Dental Health Month


February is National Children’s Dental Health Month (NCDHM).
All month long, dental professionals, healthcare providers, and educators will come together to promote the benefits of good oral health. Each year, the theme for NCDHM changes. For 2017, the theme is “Choose Tap Water for a Sparkling Smile.” Here are just some of the reasons why tap water is best:

  • Soda contains caffeine, known to cause everything from jitters, upset stomach, and headaches to difficulty concentrating, difficulty sleeping, and increased heart rate and blood pressure.
  • A 12-ounce soda contains about 10 teaspoons of sugar. [Read more…]

5 Ways to Care for Your Teeth When Pregnant

It’s a new year, and for those who are pregnant, a time to prepare for new life. Taking good care of your baby begins with you during this important stage. When you’re expecting, even your teeth could use some TLC. Here are five ways to care for your teeth when pregnant:

  1. Switch to a softer toothbrush. This will help you to apply gentle pressure to your gums. According to BabyCenter, “about half of moms-to-be have swollen, red, tendergums that bleed when flossed or brushed.” This is due to pregnancy gingivitis, or mild inflammation of the gums during pregnancy. Rising hormone levels can be partly to blame for your gums’ sensitivity to bacteria in plaque. This leads us to the next point…
  2. Take good care of your gums. Did you know that periodontal disease during pregnancy is linked to premature birth and low birth weight? Along with periodontal disease, the March of Dimes cites gingivitis and tooth decay as conditions that pregnant women are more susceptible to. We’ve got a secret weapon for your gums—floss! [Read more…]

Charcoal Whitening Trend May Be Unsafe, Dentists Warn

Thought of using charcoal to whiten your teeth? The idea is trending. YouTube user Mama Natural posted a video on using a charcoal product to whiten her teeth, and more than a million viewers tuned in to watch: Activated Charcoal—Weird Way to Whiten Teeth.

Using Nature’s Way activated charcoal that costs about $5 from health food stores, Mama Natural states that the charcoal absorbs bacteria, toxins, and staining on the teeth, even though using the black powder may seem counterintuitive at first. Recently, however, FoxNews published an article warning consumers against using charcoal as a whitening agent. [Read more…]

5 Ways to Wean the Baby from the Pacifier

Photo: Philipp Antar/CC by 2.0

Photo: Philipp Antar/CC by 2.0

Here’s a New Year’s Resolution for you: wean the little one from the pacifier. The sucking reflex is natural, but if your tot hasn’t weaned him/herself from the pacifier by 3 or 4 years old, it may be time to roll up your sleeves and get creative. Here are 5 ideas we’ve found from around the Web to help: [Read more…]

Stocking Stuffer: Electronic Toothbrushes

Photo: makelessnoise/CC BY 2.0

Photo: makelessnoise/CC BY 2.0

Looking for a thoughtful holiday present to give to friends and family this year? How about an electronic toothbrush? While it isn’t essential to use one in order to do a thorough job of brushing, electronic toothbrushes do have advantages that go beyond just vibrating. Here are some tips on brands and products to look for from a recent article by Digital Trends: [Read more…]

Seal of Approval for Dental Sealants

SmilingChildAlameda Pediatric Dentistry strongly encourages the application of dental sealants. A safe protective coating, sealants act as a physical barrier that blocks plaque from accumulating in hard-to-clean grooves and pits of molar teeth. Covered by most dental policies, sealants take just a few minutes to apply, and the process is completely painless.

This month, the Centers for Disease Control released a Vital Signs report that includes the following important findings on sealants: [Read more…]

Halloween Candy Survival Guide

halloween-fairyAll year long, kids look forward to the magic and fun of Halloween. Parents enjoy the costumes and trick-or-treating, too, but the thought of all that candy can be troublesome. Whether you raid the candy bags to the benefit of your coworkers, sell the candy at a buyback, or ration it in some other way, much of the sweets will end up with your kids. To help you sort through the Halloween bags with them, here’s a summary of MouthHealthy.org’s rundown of common candies:

Chocolate: Of all the Halloween candies your kids will receive, chocolate is best because it washes off teeth more easily. Choose dark chocolate when possible, as it has less sugar than milk chocolate. Chocolate can also be good for you. Read our article, A Delicious Secret, to find out more.

Sticky and Gummy Candies: “Be picky if it’s sticky,” MouthHealthy advises. We agree. Sticky and gummy candies are harder to remove and could result in cavity-causing bacteria staying on the kids’ teeth longer. [Read more…]

Turning on Cartoons Can Help Turn Off the Anxiety at the Dentist’s Office

Child at DentistKids love watching cartoons, and it turns out there’s a place where turning on the monitor can be especially comforting for them—the dentist’s office! According to a recent study of 56 randomly assigned children aged 7 to 9 years, kids who received dental treatment while watching cartoons showed less anxiety and more cooperation than those who received no distraction. The dental treatments conducted during the study included oral exams, injections with a local anesthetic, and tooth restoration. The findings, originally published in the journal Acta Odontologica Scandinavica, include the following: [Read more…]

We’re Moving! 7 Reasons You’ll Love Our New Location

atlantic-5cAfter 40 years at South Shore Center, we’re moving to a new location. It’s hard to say goodbye, but it’s easy to get excited about the change when you consider the exciting things happening around the Marina Business District—soon the site of our new home.

While South Shore is centralized, our new vicinity boasts plenty of options for foot traffic. The West End is a hotbed of revitalization and is just beginning to come into its own as a premier Alameda destination. In addition to our expansive, state-of-the-art facility currently under construction (details to come!), here are 7 things to look forward to:

1. Alameda Landing. This 72-acre mixed-use destination is a few short minutes from our new location. The kids know it well as the home of Cream and In-N-Out Burger, but the restaurant list has grown to include the likes of Spin pizza, Shirasoni, Famous Dave’s BBQ, and much more to come. Families have come to appreciate the convenience of having a Target on the island, and with our new location, you can easily grab household supplies at Target or groceries at Safeway during your child’s appointment. An 8-acre waterfront park is also on the way—a nice place to to unwind after a busy weekday.

2. Marina Village Shopping Center. Even with the Landing right next door, Marina Village remains a shopping mainstay for Alameda families, whether it’s for party supplies at the dollar store or a hot bowl of pho at Mint Leaf. And parking is a breeze.

3. Shoreline Park. It’s a hidden little secret—this park includes a small stretch of the Bay Trail, with biking and walking paths, the boats of the marina nearby, views of the estuary and Oakland skyline, and relaxing green lawns. Make it a tradition to walk here after your child’s appointment.

[Read more…]

Meet the Staff: 3 RDAs on What Makes Pleasanton Pediatric Dentistry Special

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Jennel, Maria, and Mabel (left to right) of Pleasanton Pediatric Dentistry

Pleasanton Pediatric Dentistry, our sister office, is located in a thriving community with one of the highest ranking school systems in California. Surrounded by 1,200 acres of parks and open space, Pleasanton is conveniently close to Silicon Valley and San Francisco while being tucked away in its own picturesque scene, complete with a flourishing business sector that includes our pediatric dentistry practice.

Jennel, who has been a Registered Dental Assistant (RDA) for Pleasanton Pediatric Dentistry for almost three years now, describes Pleasanton as a diverse little town with plenty of activities, parks, and restaurants. Maria, now an RDA for over three decades, adds that Pleasanton is additionally very family-oriented.

“The city offers street fairs and concerts in the park on Friday nights in the summer,” Maria says.

[Read more…]