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Northstar Family Dental

Why Your Child’s First Dental Visit is So Important

“Amazing experience with my anxious 7 year old son. Friendly and accommodating staff and a superbly clean office. Awesome list of “comfort” items helped ease my sons fears (he thinks watching TV while getting dental work done is the best thing ever!) This is the third dentist we have been to with him, and as the saying goes, third time’s the charm.” – Kelly H. (GOOGLE)

 

Believe it or not, your child’s first experience with a dental office can shape their feelings about dental visits for a lifetime. With the number one reason cited for not seeing a dentist regularly being “a bad previous experience,” a good first impression is critical.

Even the most advanced techniques and skilled dental professionals will have a hard time erasing a bad memory, which is why it is so important to start with a positive experience.

 

At Northstar Family Dental, our team recognizes the implications of a child’s first few visits. Which is why we take a thoughtful and purposeful approach to ensure your little one associates the dentist office with a safe, happy and friendly environment. 

Each child is greeted by one of our friendly team members and shown around the office – giving them time to relax and ask questions. Their tour includes a visit to the prize box which they will be able to return to pick a prize after they’ve completed their checkup.

Once in the room, they get their choice of kid-favorite television channel to watch during their checkup and cleaning. Our hygienists have perfected the art of the kid-friendly cleaning through the use of vivid communication that children can understand and relate to. We use “magical paint” (toothpaste), of their flavor choice, to get rid of the “sugar bugs.” The kids are also encouraged to help count their teeth and check to make sure they are healthy and clean.

Keeping the kids involved and letting them help make decisions, prevents them from feeling out of control of the situation leading to nervousness and anxiety, while also keeping them distracted from the fact that they’re getting a checkup!

And good oral health care habits are not to go unrewarded. In addition to picking from the prize box – when a child is cavity free, they join our No Cavity Club – which enters them into a drawing for exciting prizes like Columbus Clippers tickets, Columbus Zoo memberships, Toys R Us gift cards and more!

 

However, even more important than all the fun offered during a Northstar Family Dental visit; if a child is still feeling unsure and resists the checkup – we will never force any treatment. Pressuring a child could leave them feeling even more anxious and stimulate negative feelings toward future appointments. If the only thing we do during an initial visit is a quick visual exam and pep talk about at-home care – that is okay! Even a nervous child will warm up to the idea of an exam as long as they are treated in a manner that builds trust.

 

 

Tips on Caring for Your Child’s Teeth at Home

Nutrition:

  1. Be mindful of snack choices. Try to avoid foods that are going to stick to your child’s teeth. (Think gummy snacks, candy, jelly and jams)
  2.  Make sure the kiddos are drinking plenty of water. When possible, try to avoid juices, soda and sports drinks which are high in sugar and acidity.
  3. Get your greens! It’s probably no surprise to see foods like broccoli and leafy greens included on a list of what your child should be consuming. They’re full of vitamins and minerals while being low in calories. They are also high in calcium, which helps in building your child’s enamel.
  4. Try crunchy, high fiber foods like apples, celery and carrots. While many fruits get a bad wrap because of their sugar content, apples are relatively low in sugar, but high in fiber and help scrub away plaque.

Brushing:

  1. Parents should be helping their kids brush until they are able to do it themselves well. Most parents are surprised to learn that it is not until age nine or 10 that a child knows how to properly and effectively brush by themselves! It is essential to check their brushing to ensure everything is getting cleaned to prevent decay. 
  2. Get them excited about oral health! In addition to informative children’s books, there are several digital resources available to parents. One of our favorite websites is 2MIN2X, which features fun videos, brushing games, printable checklists, etc. Check it out at the link below!

http://2min2x.org/

We would love to see your little one in our office for their first visit. We promise to provide a memorible experience that will be sure to get them excited about oral health and future visits to the dentists! Call today! 614-682-6213.

Cassie Wise, RDH, Contributing Editor

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Is Botox, Juvederm or Radiesse right for you?

 

Are you unhappy with the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles?

Consider BOTOX® Cosmetic, the only FDA approved treatment to temporarily improve both moderate to severe frown lines between the brows and fine lines around the eyes (commonly referred to as “crows feet”) in adults. This simple, yet effective, treatment typically takes only about 10 minutes to complete in the comfort and privacy of our office – and has been proven to last up to four months. 

Do you suffer from chronic migraines or teeth grinding?

BOTOX® is the first and only FDA-approved preventive treatment for chronic migraines. Unlike acute treatments, which are used to treat a headache or migraine once it’s already begun, BOTOX® prevents headaches and migraines before they even start. 

What is JUVÉDERM®?

JUVÉDERM®  is a non-surgical treatment to lift and contour the cheek area, smooth wrinkles and lines, and even enhance your lips. Over time, the cheeks flatten and lips lose fullness. This is caused by a natural loss of volume. JUVÉDERM® combats these signs of aging by adding subtle and smooth volume beneath the skin’s surface to lift and contour cheeks and lips.  Results are not only instantaneous – the outcome looks natural and is long lasting. In fact, JUVÉDERM® is the only filler proven to last up to two years in the cheek area. 

Our newest product, JUVÉDERM® Volbella XC is the first and only FDA approved filler proven to increase lip fullness and soften the appearance of vertical lip lines for up to one year.

JUVÉDERM® also contains lidocaine to help reduce discomfort during the treatment. With the amazing benefits, it is no surprise that JUVÉDERM® is the #1 selling collection of filler in the U.S.

What is RADIESSE®?

RADIESSE® is a dermal filler that is used for smoothing moderate to severe facial wrinkles and folds, such as nasolabial folds (the creases that extend from the corner of your nose to the corner of your mouth) and for correcting volume loss in the back of the hands.  The filler works immediately to add instant volume under the skin. Over time, the benefits of RADIESSE® continue by stimulating your body’s own natural collagen. Results have been shown to last a year or longer in many patients; making the treatment results both immediate and long lasting.

What will I look like with BOTOX®,  JUVÉDERM® or RADIESSE® treatment?

Still not convinced? Download the Treatment Visualizer to see how amazing the results could look on YOU! https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/juvederm-treatment-visualizer/id501612171?mt=8

We always offer complimentary consultations to ensure that you confidently choose the best treatment option for your individual needs. Let the experts at Northstar Family Dental help you discover the results that everyone will notice, but no one will know.

Call for your consultation today! 614-682-6213.

Jessica Bowersock, Certified Dental Assistant, Certified Advanced Esthetician

Contributing Editor

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Why the need for Dental Implants?

Despite continuous advancements in dental technology and improvements in oral health, millions of Americans still struggle with tooth loss. This is typically the result of tooth decay, periodontal disease, or injury. For many years, bridges and dentures were the only treatment options for people suffering from tooth loss. Not anymore.

Today, oral surgeons can offer a different solution in the form of Dental Implants. Implants look, feel, and function like your natural teeth, allowing you to eat, smile and communicate as confidently as you would with your natural teeth.

What are Dental Implants?

Dental implants are artificial tooth “roots” that are placed into the jaw to help hold the replacement teeth in place. The implants themselves are small titanium posts that are surgically placed into the jawbone where teeth are missing. The posts act as anchors and provide a strong foundation for the replacement teeth, which are made to match your natural teeth.

What Are the Advantages of Dental Implants?

Improved appearance. Dental implants look and feel like your own teeth. And because they are designed to fuse with bone, they become permanent.

Improved speech. Often, a patient with dentures will experience gradual movement and poor fit of the replacement teeth over time causing disrupted or difficulty with speech. Because Dental Implants are permanently placed, they allow you to speak without the worry that the teeth might slip.

Improved comfort and convenience. Because they become part of you, implants eliminate the discomfort of removable dentures which don’t always fit identically to your jawline. They eliminate the embarrassing inconvenience of removing dentures, as well as the need for messy adhesives to keep them in place.

Easier eating. Dental implants function like your own teeth, allowing you to eat your favorite foods with confidence and without pain.

Improved self-esteem. If you’ve struggled with tooth loss, you can imagine how having a full set of natural looking and feeling teeth can improve your quality of life. Dental Implants can restore your smile and renew your self-confidence in personal, work and social environments.

Improved oral health. Dental implants don’t require removal of tooth structure to adjacent teeth, as a tooth-supported bridge does. Because nearby teeth are not altered to support the implant, more of your own teeth are left intact, improving long-term oral health. Individual implants also allow easier access between teeth, making it easy to maintain optimal oral hygiene.

Durability. Implants are very durable and with regular dental hygiene maintenance, many implants last a lifetime with no needs to repair or replace.

Who is a Good Candidate for Implants?

In most cases, anyone healthy enough to undergo a routine dental extraction or oral surgery can be considered for a dental implant.

Northstar Family Dental’s Certified Oral Surgeon, Dr. Julie Park, will meet with you individually to understand your personal needs and confirm that implants are an ideal solution for you.

Dr. Park will work closely with you and your Northstar Family Dental general dentist to develop an individualized treatment plan. This team approach; partnering you with professionals who are specially trained and experienced in oral surgery and restorative dentistry will ensure a comfortable and streamlined experience, guaranteeing the best possible outcome.

Are Dental Implants Painful?

The majority of dental implant patients report that there is very little discomfort involved in the procedure. If necessary, oral and  IV sedation are available for added comfort and reduced anxiety. However, most patients describe the amount of pain experienced to be less than that of a tooth extraction.

What Type of Success Can Be Expected from a Dental Implant?

As with any surgical procedure results may vary from patient to patient. However, in general, dental implants have a success rate of up to 98%. With proper care, implants can last a lifetime.

If you are considering implants…

Call our office at 614.891.4242 for more information or to schedule a consultation with Dr. Park or Dr. Kulesa.

Dr. Julie Park, DMD

Contributing editor

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Why is My Tooth Sensitive?


Tooth sensitivity, tooth pain, biting pain, gum pain — they are all uncomfortable, annoying, and scary occurrences…  A sensation in your tooth can be cause by a multitude of things, ranging from gum recession and root exposure, to sinus pressure, to tooth decay and infection.

tooth sens


Causes of Tooth Sensitivity:

1. “Idiopathic Hypersensitivity”

A tooth may be sensitive for a short time with no cause, no treatment, and it will go away!  Good news!

2. Sinus Pressure

May cause teeth to feel uncomfortable and achy/painful.  The sensation may become more apparent when walking up stairs, running, or with exercise.  If this is the suspected cause, we may refer you to you Primary Care Physician for a confirmed diagnosis and treatment.

3. Gum Recession

Caused (usually) by brushing too hard or using a medium/hard bristled toothbrush, gum recession can also be intensified by tooth grinding and/or clenching.  Many treatments are available, depending on the severity of this condition.

4. Tooth Grinding (Bruxism), Tooth Clenching Habit

In addition to causing damage to the structure of your teeth, tooth grinding and clenching make teeth hypersensitive due to the forces and pressures exerted.  This habit can also cause loss of
enamel near the gumline of teeth.  Treatment usually includes an occlusal (night) guard, and possibly treatment to cover areas of enamel loss.

sens teeth cartoon5. Missing/Loose Fillings

The inner surface of your tooth is exposed and we must cover it!

6. Cavities

7. Cracked Teeth

Cracked teeth can lead to temperature sensitivity, or sensitivity when chewing.  However, recent research shows that 70% of cracked teeth cause no symptoms!  Cracked teeth need treated ASAP before the crack progresses.

8. Abscess/Infected Tooth

Usually causes spontaneous pain, sometimes swelling, and/or pain that comes and goes over time.  Come see us immediately!

9. Gum Disease

This can cause root exposure, but also active infection of your gums can make both your gums and teeth painful.


Whatever the cause of your sensitive teeth, we can help.  We are expertly trained in the diagnosis and management of tooth sensitivity (in addition to a lot of other things!), and we would love to alleviate your annoying tooth discomfort! 🙂

Dr. B

Thinking About Having a Baby, or Recently Pregnant?

When you’re planning a family, visiting the dentist may not be at the top of your priority list.  However, if you’re thinking about having a baby or are recently pregnant, a dental cleaning and check-up is best done sooner rather than later.

Good oral health is a component of good overall health, both for you and for your baby…

And the good news is, dental care is safe and essential during pregnancy.

Below are answers to common questions about dental treatment and pregnancy, as well as oral care tips for pregnant women.

Don’t forget to come see us during this crazy, chaotic time!


Regular Visits to Monitor Pregnancy Gingivitis

     Increase in hormones during pregnancy increases blood flow to the gums, which can cause swelling and tenderness.  It can also cause “pregnancy gingivitis,” Read the rest of this entry »

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Our Philosophy

Our philosophy at Northstar Family Dental is simple:  We strive to provide high quality, comfortable, comprehensive care with a strong focus on prevention and education.  Overall, we treat each patient as an individual, keeping their own goals, concerns and personal philosophies in mind.  I want to break down each part of our philosophy, in order to describe in greater depth what we are all about.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Is Sleep Apnea Affecting Your Quality of Life?

Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) affects millions of adults in the U.S. — an estimated 1 in 5 Americans — yet studies show that up to 80% of these cases are undetected.

OSA is caused by obstruction of the airway that occurs when the jaw falls back during sleep, collapsing the airway.  As a reaction, the brain is triggered, causing one to come out of deep sleep to regain control of the jaw muscles to re-open the airway to allow for breathing to resume.  This can occur 5-70 times per hour — dramatically effecting quality of sleep. Read the rest of this entry »

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Cleft Lip & Palate Facts

What’s a Cleft Lip or Cleft Palate?
Cleft lip and cleft palate are birth defects — they happen when a baby is developing.
Cleft lip is a split in the upper lip — either one or two sides of the lip — creating a wider opening into the nose. Cleft Palate is a split in the roof of the mouth, leaving a hole between the nose and mouth.

free to smileHow common are they?
Cleft lip and/or palate are very common and occur in about 1 or 2 of every 1,000 babies born in the United States each year.

When do they occur?
These defects occur between 6 and 12 weeks in utero. Because the lips and palate develop separately, it’s possible to have cleft lip alone, cleft palate alone, or both together.

What is the cause?
The cause is not always known. Sometimes it is hereditary or part of a syndrome (meaning there are birth defects in other body parts too), It may be related to what happened during a mother’s pregnancy (medications, lack of certain vitamins, exposure to cigarette smoke).

What other problems do these babies have?
Feeding problems… Because there is a hole between the nose and mouth milk can come out of the nose, can happen every time they drink. Ear/hearing problems… Can have hearing loss (may be caused by fluid building up inside the ear). Dental problems… Small teeth, missing teeth, extra teeth, crooked teeth, etc. Speech problems… Kids with cleft palate find their soft palate sometimes does not move well and lets too much air leak out the nose while speaking; makes them sound nasally. Read the rest of this entry »

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3 Warning Signs of Impacted Wisdom Teeth

Wisdom-Teeth-XrayWisdom teeth, the last teeth in the mouth to break through the gums and located furthest back in the mouth, usually begin to form in pre-teen years. By late teen years, the these teeth will begin to erupt into the oral cavity… if there is room.

More often than not, our mouths lack the adequate space for these teeth, leading to either full impaction (where the tooth never fully erupts into the mouth), or partial impaction (where the tooth only has room to partially break through the gums). This usually means that the teeth are painfully lodged in the jawbone. Read the rest of this entry »

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Banish Bad Breath!

What Causes Bad Breath

Bacteria.
And bacteria’s food is your food. Therefore, to avoid bad breath, the most important habit to maintain is to keep your mouth clean — brush, floss, rinse, and even use a tongue scraper. If you clean away their food, the bacteria can’t proliferate and bad breath is tamed. Cavities and periodontal disease will cause bad breath!

breathSome foods and drinks. Garlic and onions contain smelly sulfur compounds that linger in your mouth, and then are exhaled after they enter the bloodstream. Coffee and alcohol create an environment that favors bacterial growth. They also dry out your mouth, which perpetuates bad breath.

Dry mouth is a major factor. Saliva is a natural antibacterial, and it washes away food. Remember to stay hydrated. This can help keep nighttime dry mouth at bay and will help to keep away morning breath, as well as daytime bad breath. Read the rest of this entry »

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