My Blog

Posts for: March, 2018

By Mehr Tucker, DDS, LLC
March 29, 2018
Category: Oral Health
Tags: fluoride  
3FluorideSourcesYouShouldMonitorforYourFamilysDentalHealth

Fluoride is an important weapon in the fight against tooth decay. Fluoride consumption and other applications are especially beneficial during children's dental development for building strong teeth long-term.

But the truism "too much of a good thing" could aptly apply to fluoride. If a child consumes too much fluoride over an extended period of time, it could cause a condition called enamel fluorosis in which the enamel surface develops mottled or streaked staining. It's not harmful to the tooth's health, but it can greatly diminish a person's smile appearance.

To avoid fluorosis, it's important with the help of your dentist to know and regulate as much as possible the amount of fluoride your child receives. Here are 3 fluoride sources you should manage.

Toothpaste. Many manufacturers add fluoride to their toothpaste formula, usually an important way to receive this tooth-strengthening chemical. But younger children tend to swallow more toothpaste than older children or adults. Because the chemical builds up in the body over time, swallowing toothpaste every day could potentially elevate your child's fluoride levels. To avoid this, just use a "smear" of toothpaste on the brush for children under age 2, and a pea-sized amount for older children.

Your water system. About three-quarters of all public water utilities add fluoride to their water as an added measure for tooth decay prevention. The amount can vary from system to system, although the maximum amount recommended by the U.S. Government is 0.70 parts per million (PPM). You can ask your local water system how much fluoride, if any, is present or they add to your drinking water.

Bottled water. Any type of bottled beverage (water, juices, sodas, etc.) could contain various levels of fluoride. Unfortunately there are no labeling requirements regarding its presence, so the most prudent course is to carefully manage the beverages your child drinks, or stay with bottled water marked "de-ionized," "purified," "demineralized" or "distilled," which typically have lower fluoride levels. For babies feeding on milk, you can use the aforementioned bottled waters to mix powder, use ready-to-feed formula (also low in fluoride) or breast-feed.

If you would like more information on fluoride and your baby, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Tooth Development and Infant Formula.”


By MEHR TUCKER, DDS, LLC
March 21, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: cosmetic dentistry   veneers  

This simple cosmetic restoration could finally give you the smile you’ve always hoped for.veneers

A smile is powerful. Not only does it have the power to make friends and influence people, this small gesture can also boost endorphins to make you feel happier. According to scientific research, smiling stimulates our brain’s reward center in a way that even chocolate can’t. Of course, if you find yourself smiling less than the average person because you hate how your smile looks then our Rockville, MD, cosmetic dentists Dr. Mehr Tucker and are here to help.

What are dental veneers?

Veneers are made of porcelain or ceramic, and each of these thin tooth-colored shells is fabricated to look just like natural tooth enamel. They are durable and stain-resistant and they offer a simple solution for hiding a variety of imperfections such as poorly shaped teeth, gaps between teeth, minor misalignments, chips and cracks, worn teeth and discolorations.

There are so many people that can benefit from what veneers have to offer. This one simple treatment could give you a straighter, whiter and more even smile.

Am I a good candidate for this cosmetic treatment?

A lot of people turning to our Rockville, MD, dentists for smile makeovers can get the results they want with this simple restoration. Porcelain veneers might be right for you if:

You are dealing with cosmetic flaws and imperfections: While dental veneers can also improve strength they are primarily used to improve and enhance the shape and overall appearance of your smile.

You maintain good oral health and hygiene: It’s important that you have a healthy smile prior to getting any cosmetic dentistry. If we discover cavities or gum disease, these issues will need to be treated before you can get dental veneers.

You have enough tooth enamel: When you come in for a consultation we will also need to take x-rays to make sure that there is enough healthy enamel to support your veneers.

Are you interested in getting dental veneers in Rockville, MD? If so, then it’s time you called our office to schedule your free consultation. Call our office today at (301) 963-8900 or email at office@sfaa.dentist to get on the books and let’s get you closer to that beautiful smile you want.


SteelyDanFoundersDeathHighlightsImportanceofEarlyCancerDetection

Fans of the legendary rock band Steely Dan received some sad news a few months ago: Co-founder Walter Becker died unexpectedly at the age of 67. The cause of his death was an aggressive form of esophageal cancer. This disease, which is related to oral cancer, may not get as much attention as some others. Yet Becker's name is the latest addition to the list of well-known people whose lives it has cut short—including actor Humphrey Bogart, writer Christopher Hitchens, and TV personality Richard Dawson.

As its name implies, esophageal cancer affects the esophagus: the long, hollow tube that joins the throat to the stomach. Solid and liquid foods taken into the mouth pass through this tube on their way through the digestive system. Worldwide, it is the sixth most common cause of cancer deaths.

Like oral cancer, esophageal cancer generally does not produce obvious symptoms in its early stages. As a result, by the time these diseases are discovered, both types of cancer are most often in their later stages, and often prove difficult to treat successfully. Another similarity is that dentists can play an important role in oral and esophageal cancer detection.

Many people see dentists more often than any other health care professionals—at recommended twice-yearly checkups, for example. During routine examinations, we check the mouth, tongue, neck and throat for possible signs of oral cancer. These may include lumps, swellings, discolorations, and other abnormalities—which, fortunately, are most often harmless. Other symptoms, including persistent coughing or hoarseness, difficulty swallowing, and unexplained weight loss, are common to both oral and esophageal cancer. Chest pain, worsening heartburn or indigestion and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) can also alert us to the possibility of esophageal cancer.

Cancer may be a scary subject—but early detection and treatment can offer many people the best possible outcome. If you have questions about oral or esophageal cancer, call our office or schedule a consultation. You can learn more in the Dear Doctor magazine article “Oral Cancer.”