Sweet tooth? How to minimize sugar damage

We all love a sweet treat on occasions but is there anyway to eat chocolates without risking cavities? The Smilepod team in Holborn have prepared their best tips on how to reduce sugar damage to your teeth.

1. Minimize frequency.

Its never about the quantity with sugar its all about the frequency. Dentist Zahra  Fernandes comments “If you are going to have a treat it is far better to have a dessert than eat a bag of sweets throughout the day”

2. Keep your coffee sugar free!

Dentist Ana Polidoro says, clients can be very unaware of the sugar in teas coffees and fizzy drinks. “If you have sugar in your coffee you will likely be sipping this for long periods of time causing prolonged sugar exposure. It’s far better to have tea or coffee without sugar. Try it skipping the sugar for a few weeks and see if you can give it up.”

3. Alcohol in moderation

All of our dental team agree alcohol in moderation is key for a healthy mouth.

Alcohol, such as wine, contains both sugar and is highly acidic. In an ideal world we would all limit consumption. Enjoying alcoholic beverages in moderation shouldn’t cause dental damage but too much alcohol can lead to dental damage.

 4. Good oral hygiene

Hygienist Charlotte Wong says while its best to avoid too much sugar in your diet for a number of reasons, if you have good oral hygiene you are far less prone to cavities and dental problems. For the best possible oral hygiene use an electric toothbrush twice a day for at least two minutes. You also have to floss! As long as you floss on a daily basis you are helping reduce the risk of gum disease. If you floss daily you can avoid so many problems. Finally come and see your hygienist regularly!

5.  Mouthwash

Dental Nurse Andrea says if you are going to treat yourself to chocolate then you can minimize damage afterward by rinsing your mouth out. Ask your dentist or hygienist to recommend the right mouthwash as some are more effective than others. We recommend using an alcohol free version.

6. Use a straw

If you are drinking very sweet drinks you can help to minimize damage by using an environmentally friendly straw. Don’t rest the straw against your teeth it needs to be positioned towards the back of your mouth. Using a straw can help avid cavities and decay.

Fighting your fear of the dentist.

The dark, clowns and dentists are some of the top phobias with 15% of people admitting to being scared to go to the dentist.

We know that fears are not always rational ( did you know that it’s possible to have a phobia of bananas? ) but rational or not phobias can affect your life if they aren’t tackled.

At Smilepod Holborn our team have come up with some ideas to help those dental phobic clients relax and beat the fear.

1) Make small steps

For someone who is really scared of the dentist just picking up the phone to make an appointment can be a huge milestone. Try and feel proud of the small steps you take on your journey to conquer dental fear

2) Build it up.

Dentist Zahra Fernades advises clients to take things slowly if they are feeling nervous. She suggests that “ Even if you cant do everything you need at once just get started. Come for a check-up so you know what you need – all that happens is we tell you if treatment is needed. I think some clients are scared we would start drilling but this would never happen! Then come for your dental hygiene which is easy and painless and will leave your smile looking aesthetically better. Then you get used to us and into the habit of coming to the dentist. The environment is what makes people scared but once you are used to it you’ll feel better.

3) Know why you are afraid.

Dentist Ana Polidoro recommends nervous clients think about the root cause of their fear. “What I see as a dentist is whenever you ask why people are scared it is usually due to having a bad experience when they were a child. Once yopu know this I can reassure you. Dentistry has changed so much over the years so your experience won’t be repeated. If you take a chance by coming to us we can make sure you have a positive experience and feel safe – my clients always say it’s much less scary than they expected”

4) Take back control

The fear of the unknown or what is going to happen can be scary for a lot of people. Hygienist Charley Wong says just removing the uncertainty can really help. “With my more nervous clients I always take things really slowly and explain what I am doing and why I am doing it. I also make it clear to my clients that if they need a break at any point they only have to ask. I think clients feel better when they feel like you are working with them. If you understand what is happening it helps anxiety.”

5) Music

Smilepod dentist suggests that for some clients just having the choice of music and a friend with them might help. We can make the experience very personal to each client and do our best to create a relaxed atmosphere.

6) Find the right dentist

Holborn dental nurses Onorina and Andrea suggest clients try and find a dentist  they trust. Onorina says, “Its important to have rapport and once you find the right dentist they will be kind and understanding about fears. “

Andrea adds “there is no need to be scared – we don’t bite! I understand fears –if you come to Smilepod our dentists are really nice will take really good care of you. I even hold some clients hands if they ask. We are understanding and kind here.”