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Archive for December 2014

Electric Toothbrushes

philips2We are often asked if an electrical toothbrush is more effective than a manual one for cleaning your teeth. Many people assume that an electrical bush will clean your teeth more effectively. The reality is that both can be effective as long as one is thorough with the brushing and one brushes for the recommended 2 minute period of time.

That being said, there are some advantages to an electric toothbrush for some people. An electric toothbrush is ideal for people who suffer from arthritis, carpal tunnel syndrome and any other painful or movement-restricting conditions. Since the electric toothbrush’s rotating head does all the work, the user is exempt from constantly applying effort with their wrists and hands; making dental care a much easier task.

Advanced electric toothbrushes include an automatic timer in their design, which makes it easier for users to know when their two minute brush is complete. This ensures a proper clean is achieved to maintain oral hygiene.

Some patients are just more prone to gingivitis and often we will make a recommendation to use an electric toothbrush for these patients. Our recommendation is the Phillips Sonicare Toothbrush. It is available in models with varying features, but the technology in each one is the same. The basic EasyClean model would be a good recommendation for most patients.

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you need more information regarding electric toothbrushes!

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Sports Drinks

It’s misleading to think that sports drinks are a healthy alternative to water. Sports drinks are marketed as a “replacement for lost essential nutrients during and after exercise.”  It is questionable if this is really necessary, when for most people a balanced diet will provide all the nutrients and electrolytes needed. Most sport drinks have high levels of sugar and acidity, both of which are harmful to your teeth. The pH of sports drinks can range from 2.3 to 4.5 which is very similar to that of soft drinks.  The pH below which damage to tooth enamel can occur is 5.5.   Some sports drinks even have caffeine, which adds to one’s daily caffeine consumption in our already coffee and energy drink-obsessed culture!  Excessive caffeine can cause an increase in heart rate, blood pressure and disruption of sleep patterns.

If you are going to consume sport drinks, it is better to have the drink all at once rather than sipping it over a period of hours. This is because acid-attacks are more harmful the more frequently or prolonged they occur.  Having your sports drink through a straw, rinsing your mouth with water (which has a neutral pH) and chewing a sugarless gum afterwards have been shown to reduce the harmful effects of sports drinks.

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