As we get used to the new normal during the global pandemic of COVID-19, preventative care may be less likely to happen in a dental office, and more likely to take place at home. Dental Hygiene is important to at home preventative care. But why is it so important?

Plaque Is a Multi Tasker

Plaque doesn’t just give your enamel a run for its money. It also affects your gums and soft tissue in the mouth, causing inflammation, bleeding, and eventually if left unchecked, severe gum disease that can even cause tooth loss. Making a daily war on plaque is the best way you can prevent cavities and gum disease. Taking it seriously now when regular dental cleanings aren’t happening as much is one reason why dental hygiene is important now.

Keeping Your Mouth Clean is More Than Just a Toothbrush

Keeping your mouth clean doesn’t just mean brushing your teeth twice daily. You have other ways to freshen breath, discourage plaque, and make those pesky food particles stuck between your teeth to get lost! Flossing is one way to take dental hygiene seriously. Getting all those little spots your brush can’t reach is vital. Brushing teeth alone only covers about 47% of plaque! Let the floss do it’s work and send that plaque packing! Also, eating crisp fresh fruits and vegetables means all that fiber is cleaning your teeth and freshening your breath while you’re eating! Add in nutrients from fresh fruits and veggies, and you’re really showing your mouth that you think dental hygiene is important! Drinking and eating plain dairy products can also tell plaque to get lost, as the proteins help to prevent plaque from sticking to teeth, and the calcium supports good bone health to boot!

We Are All in This Together

Although this global pandemic is a difficult time, you’re not alone. Part of being in this together means acknowledging that dental hygiene is important not only by saying it, but by doing it. Prioritize your dental health and do all you can to do preventative care at home, and minimize the risk to your dentist and their staff. If you’re concerned about emergency dental needs, do call immediately to discuss your options, the nature of your emergency, and how we can help you. Call our Leawood Dental Office to make an appointment with a dentist who may be able to help you find out more about this topic, and improve your oral health.

3 Common Causes of Chronic Dry Mouth

Looking for information on dry mouth because it seems that your mouth is not producing as much saliva as it used to? It is important for your mouth to have enough saliva to neutralize acids and bacteria as well as wash away food particles. This helps to ensure you have a healthy mouth. Saliva is also important when it comes to eating. That is because it helps you chew and swallow easier. But saliva also helps when it comes to your good digestion of foods.

If you do indeed have dry mouth, know that it can range from minimally affecting your good oral health to affecting your oral health so much that it jeopardizes your overall good oral health.

The following is a list of some of the common symptoms someone will often experience when they are living with dry mouth:

  • A feeling of dryness in the mouth
  • A dry tongue
  • Thick saliva
  • Difficulty chewing
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • A persistent sore throat
  • Bad breath
  • Experiencing different taste sensations when consuming foods and beverages

Common causes of chronic dry mouth

The following is a list of three of the more common causes for why someone may be diagnosed with chronic dry mouth:

#1 – Not drinking enough fluids

Most people know that it is essential for them to hydrate themselves properly so that they can be in good overall health. It is also important to be properly hydrated in order to avoid being diagnosed with chronic dry mouth.

#2 – Taking certain prescription medications

There are literally thousands of different types of prescription medications that can lead to dry mouth. Having a dry mouth is a common symptom of certain prescription medications. That means those who are taking medications need to check the side effects in order to find out whether or not this is their underlying reason for having a dry mouth.

#3 – Being diagnosed with certain diseases or disorders

There are many health issues in which one of the symptoms is dry mouth. This makes it necessary for those who are living with a certain disease or disorder to find out whether dry mouth is one of the symptoms associated with their health issue.

Is your dry mouth getting in the way of your good oral health?

If you think you have dry mouth then finding out the cause of your dry mouth is necessary before you are able to get treatment for this serious dental issue. In order for you to minimize your dry mouth problem, you can drink water often throughout the day, chew sugarless gum and/or suck on sugarless candies. Avoiding eating salty foods and avoiding drinking beverages that contain caffeine are recommended as these two things tend to dry out the mouth. In order for you to know how to properly address your dry mouth condition, making an appointment with a dental professional as soon as possible is recommended.

Request an appointment here: or call Asha Dental at (913) 440-4199 for an appointment in our Leawood office.

Check out what others are saying about our services on Yelp: Read our Yelp reviews.

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Preventing Cold Sores in Your Mouth

Cold sores can form for a number of reasons, and the cause can be very hard to determine. However, there are certain precautions that can be taken to limit the chance of developing a cold sore in your mouth. By understanding successful techniques for the prevention of cold sores, you can minimize suffering from those annoying bumps inside the mouth.

How to prevent cold sores

While it is not possible to predict or completely prevent cold sores from forming, there are things that can be done to significantly reduce the chance of having one develop. The following are the five best ways to limit the chance of developing a cold sore.

Wash your hands often

First and foremost, it is important to practice good hygiene overall by washing your hands often and avoiding touching your face too often. Cold sores are the result of a viral infection, which can very easily be transferred from skin-to-skin contact. By keeping your hands washed and cleaned, the chance of picking up the virus that leads to cold sores reduces. The best way to keep your hands clean, which limits the chance of developing a cold sore, is to get into the habit of washing your hands before and after each meal, once in the morning and once at night.

Avoid sharing items

As mentioned, cold sores form when the virus causing the cold sores is spread. When you limit contact with others, the chance of picking up the virus that leads to cold sores is kept at a minimal level. To best prevent cold sores, try and avoid sharing items such as lip balm, eating utensils, etc.

Limit stress

Stress is one of the more prevalent risk factors for the development of cold sores. While limiting stress is much easier said than done, there are certain things that can be done, such as taking advantage of free time to do things you enjoy and thinking positively and rationally about stressful situations.

Reduce sugar intake

There seems to be a correlation between sugar and the development of cold sores, meaning the more sugar intake, the higher the likelihood of developing cold sores. To limit the chance of developing cold sores, try and cut out sweets from the diet as much as possible. While it is okay to have a cookie once in a while, be sure to avoid too much sugar intake and practice good oral hygiene when doing so by brushing and flossing.

Stay rested

Another common link to the development of cold sores is fatigue. Individuals who do not receive an adequate amount of sleep each night are more vulnerable to the development of cold sores. Be sure to stay on a consistent sleep schedule of seven to eight hours of sleep each night.

Request an appointment here: or call Asha Dental at (913) 440-4199 for an appointment in our Leawood office.

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Making Oral Hygiene Fun for Kids

Oral hygiene is one of the most effective ways to prevent dental issues. The earlier a person starts taking proper care of their teeth, the less likely they are to deal with dental issues like gum disease. That is one of the reasons why it is essential to teach children about the importance of dental hygiene early on. That way, it becomes a habit that they take with them into adulthood.

If you are looking for new ways to make oral hygiene a fun activity for the kids, this article is for you. Let us take a look at some great ways to spice up brushing and flossing sessions.

Oral hygiene tips for parents

1. Do it together

Children have a tendency to mimic the things they see grownups doing, and that can be used to instill good oral habits. Turn brushing and flossing into a family activity that everyone enjoys. Watching parents brushing and flossing teaches them good dental hygiene habits since they only have to mimic it. If they watch their parents brushing gently and brushing their tongues, the kids are more likely to follow suit. Parents can also spice things up by singing a song or nursery rhyme.

2. Get an interesting toothbrush

The kid's toothbrush section is filled with all sorts of cool brushes. Many have images of popular cartoons that children watch. That way, the child connects oral hygiene to other things they enjoy.

3. Use a timer

Brushing sessions should be two minutes long according to the American Dental Association. Parents should use a timer to ensure each child is brushing for two minutes. There are actually two-minute sand timers that are designed for brushing. The child simply needs to flip it over and begin brushing.

4. Use kid-friendly toothpaste

The reality is that many adults do not like the taste of minty toothpaste, and children like it even less. If the child dislikes the minty taste, that can lead to them associating brushing with negative emotions. Instead, use a toothpaste that is made for kids. These come in fun flavors like banana and strawberry so the child can actually look forward to brushing. 

5. Use educational tools

There are many books and videos that can be used to encourage good oral hygiene. These stories are made for children specifically and teach them important things they need to know about keeping their teeth healthy. It is done in a light, fun manner so the children are more likely to pay attention.

6. Give rewards

Positive reinforcement also helps when it comes to teaching children good dental hygiene habits. For example, you can give the child a sticker after each brushing session, which they can use to decorate their room, or they can earn points to purchase the toys they like.

By instilling good oral cleaning habits early on, parents can ensure their children will have healthy teeth for the rest of their lives. Contact one of our dentists to learn more about how to teach children the importance of oral hygiene.

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Are Toothpicks Safe For Teeth?

Getting a piece of food stuck between the teeth can be annoying and sometimes painful. Typically someone can use their finger to remove a piece of food that has become stuck. However, depending on where it is it could be too difficult to reach or even impossible with just the finger.

When this happens it is important to use something to help in dislodging the food. We are always told to never use metal on our teeth and be careful to not scratch our teeth or possibly puncture our gums. During many of these times, a toothpick could be great to help. They are safe for people to use and can be very helpful. Of course, they should never be used to pick down below the gum line.

Other than a toothpick, what can I use?

Dislodging a piece of food or something that is either stuck between the teeth or irritating the gums can be done a few ways. Today we will visit a few other options that a person may have and can use.

Water is for more than rehydrating

Drinking water is great for the overall health, yes. However, a lot of people may not realize that water is great for cleaning off teeth during the day. When a person drinks water it helps in removing bad bacteria, and washing away sugars and food particles that could begin the formation of plaque or tooth decay.

For people that typically drink sugary drinks including coffee with creamer or sodas, opting for a bottle of water during the day can have great benefits. Replacing two drinks that you would typically have with water will not only help to wash away stuck food but it also fends off staining and the forming of plaque and cavities. Keeping a healthy oral hygiene routine is just as important.

Floss and water flossers

Flossing every day is also important for removing stuck food and particles. If a person has not been keeping up with this task, starting is the best thing that they can do. It will also help to strengthen gums and fend off plaque forming between teeth.

For people that thoroughly dislike flossing, a water flosser may be a great option. These machines are very easy to use and typically only take adding water to the tank. The water is projected through and washes away food and bacteria. The strength of the water can be adjusted and should never be too rough or strong. This is also very beneficial for helping gum health.

Brushing is always important

Brushing of the teeth twice per day is vital for the teeth and oral health. It is important to remember that this can be one of the best ways to remove something stuck between the teeth.

Do you have additional questions about different things you can do to remove food that is stuck between your teeth? Contact our office today and our staff will be glad to help. We can answer additional questions and guide you on making the best decisions for your teeth and overall oral health.

Let us know what issues you are having and we will get the best answers for your specific needs and desires. Contact us today!

Request an appointment here: or call Asha Dental at (913) 440-4199 for an appointment in our Leawood office.

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How is Cold Sensitivity Connected to Tooth Pain?

Ouch! Maybe it's a dollop of ice cream or a fresh smoothie or even a sip of ice water— but there it is, excruciating tooth pain.

There are many reasons why people experience tooth sensitivity to cold. Luckily, several steps can be taken to cure this, including checking with the dentist.

Additional symptoms can accompany sensitivity to cold, including:

  1. Sensitivity to hot foods
  2. Pain when biting or chewing
  3. Continued dull or throbbing tooth pain

What conditions create tooth sensitivity?

Tooth Decay

Little cavities can become sensitive to cold food or drinks. Cavities are created in enamel and reveal the nerve inside the tooth to cold, heat, and other sources of discomfort.

While continuing to floss and brush to prevent cavities, see a dentist to identify and treat the condition. If the cavity is little, a dentist can extract the decayed area and fill the tooth. If it's grave, a root canal to clean out the decay, disinfect the root and seal the tooth may be necessary.

Exposed Roots

Tooth enamel, the hardest material in the body, covers the tooth over the gum line. Though, the root of the tooth, the part usually covered by the gums, does not have this shielding layer. If brushing and floss are not regular or if the brush and floss are too vigorously the gums may retreat, exposing the roots of one or more of the teeth.

Sensitivity after Dental Work

Sometimes dental work can briefly cause the teeth to become sensitive to cold foods, from a couple of days to a week or longer if the dentist filled or a crown or filling.

In these cases, over the counter pain relievers, aspirin, acetaminophen, or ibuprofen can bring some relief. If the pain persists or worsens, contact the dentist.

How Can I Get Rid of Tooth Pain from cold sensitivity?

In general, tackle temporary tooth sensitivity to cold with the common elements of proper oral hygiene: brushing and flossing, as well as routine preventive care visits to the dentist. Think about using toothpaste purposely made for sensitive teeth or adding a fluoride mouth rinse to a daily schedule.

Nevertheless, if your sensitivity lingers, it could indicate that a more serious dental condition is present. The pulp—the interior of your teeth—could be damaged, either from long-term tooth decay or an injury. It's essential to visit a dentist before it develops an infection that could put the tooth at risk.

Tooth Sensitivity to Cold Screams Attention!

If any concerns over increased or new tooth sensitivity to cold contact the dentist office immediately. Make an appointment and get the tooth checked out before it has a chance to turn into something more serious.

Request an appointment in our Leawood dentist office here: .

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5 Tips for Healthy Teeth Care

Healthy Teeth

Understanding what healthy teeth care entails is an important part of good oral hygiene. Teeth are the strongest part of a person's body, but they are also exposed to more things that can damage them than any other part of the body.

While there are a variety of dental prosthetics that can be used to replace missing teeth, none of these are as strong as natural teeth. These prosthetics also cost money out of the patient's wallets, while the costs of taking proper care of teeth and keeping them healthy throughout a lifetime are barely noticeable.

5 tips for healthy teeth care

1. Brush regularly

Brushing is one of the most important parts of good oral hygiene, and it should be done at least twice each day. One of this times should be right before going to bed since saliva production is reduced while asleep. Saliva is a natural cleaner that removes acids, bacteria, plaque and food particles from teeth surfaces.

The food particles left behind on teeth are sometimes acidic on their own, and they are also converted into acids by the bacteria that live in the mouth. This can cause serious damage to teeth enamel when these acids are left on them for extended periods.

The bacteria in the mouth form a sticky film called plaque. This sticks to teeth and eats away at the enamel. It also calcifies and turns into tartar when left on teeth for extended periods of time. It is best to remove plaque from teeth before it turns into tartar since that cannot be removed by brushing. Tartar gives teeth a yellow tint, and it facilitates tooth decay.

2. Floss daily

Flossing is an equally important part of good oral hygiene. The bristles of a toothbrush cannot reach the tight spaces between teeth, so patients should use floss to clean these areas. Flossing should be done at least once each day to ensure these areas are free of food particles and plaque.

3. Use an antibacterial mouthwash

A good mouthwash helps to kill some of the acid-producing bacteria that live in the mouth. It also helps to clean tight spaces that even floss cannot reach. Mouthwashes also freshen breath, and they can be used to re-mineralize teeth with fluoride.

4. Avoid excessive sugar

Sugar is one of those things people who are serious about healthy teeth care should avoid. It is an acidic substance, and it tends to stick to teeth surfaces. This makes it harder for saliva to wash it away, allowing it to stay on teeth for longer periods and cause more damage. The acid-producing bacteria that live in the mouth also thrive on sugary substances.

5. Visit a dentist regularly

Regular checkups and dental cleanings are just as important as any of the other things listed above. The dentist will remove tartar during the cleaning and look for signs of any developing issues during the examination.

Schedule an appointment with a dentist today

For more information or to schedule an appointment with Asha Dental, request an appointment in our Leawood dental office here: . Or call us at (913) 440-4199.

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Reasons Fluoride is Good for Your Teeth

If you take the time to read the label on toothpaste and some types of water, you will usually find fluoride is part of the ingredient list. Fluoride is added to toothpaste and water to improve oral health. Specifically, fluoride bolsters tooth strength. Although fluoride has the potential to cause illness if taken in excessive amounts, fluoride is safe and in use in water systems and toothpaste around the world. So, do not have fear when you read the United States Food and Drug Administration's warning label on every container of toothpaste regarding the fluoride within the tube. Fluoride really is essential for dental health.

The basics of fluoride

Most people express shock upon learning fluoride is a waste product of aluminum and fertilizer businesses. The chemicals that fluoridate water are not of the pharmaceutical variety as most assume. Rather, they are a waste product of phosphate fertilizer. The reason why fluoride is so effective at improving tooth strength is the fact that it is used in small amounts in water and toothpaste. In fact, fluoride reduces the rate at which teeth decay.

The prudent use of fluoride does wonders for dental health

The government adjusts the fluoride levels in the public tap water supply in order to get the balance just right. Although the ideal amount of fluoride one consumes differs by factors like age and the risk for dental problems, scientists have found fluoride at the proper level in the drinking water reduces cavities by about 30 percent (http://now.tufts.edu/articles/fluoride-teeth-public-water-supply). Since first adding fluoride to the public's water supply in 1945, there has been a substantial decline in dental decay and tooth loss across the U.S.

The scientific consensus on fluoride

When in doubt, it is almost always best to consult with those who are in the know. In this case, the proper party to consult with is those in the realm of science. The current scientific consensus pertaining to fluoride in the public drinking water is that it is safe and quite effective (https://www.forbes.com/sites/quora/2017/11/15/why-you-still-shouldnt-worry-about-fluoridated-drinking-water/#5bde0e173f74). Fluoride added to teeth makes enamel that much more resistant to the demineralization process. This increased resistance slows the decay process a great deal.

Tooth decay occurs as bacteria within dental plaque interact with sugar and generate harmful acid. This acid dissolves the enamel and dentin of teeth. Use fluoridated water and toothpaste, and you will stop the leaching of calcium and minerals from your tooth tissues during the decay process and ultimately preserve your oral health.

Are you sure you are getting the right amount of fluoride?

Take a moment to consider whether you and your loved ones are actually getting the level of fluoride you really need. Do you drink tap water? If you use a filter on your tap water, it might be taking out some of the fluoride. Furthermore, if you drink bottled water, there is a good chance it might not have fluoride or it might have minimal fluoride. Review your habits, get a sense of whether you are consuming enough fluoride and proceed accordingly.

Call (913) 440-4199 today to reach Asha Dental.

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3 Simple Secrets to a Healthy Mouth

If you are like most people, you look at celebrities and others with perfectly healthy mouths and wonder what they are doing different from everyone else.

Below, we take a look at some little-known tidbits about the manner in which tooth and gum care should be performed.

Follow this advice and you just might notice a meaningful improvement in the look, feel and function of your teeth and gums.

A Healthy Mouth Hinges on the Manner in Which You Brush and Floss

Too many people think flossing at night and brushing two times per day is all that is required to maintain a healthy mouth.  In reality, the manner in which you floss and brush matters a great deal. When flossing, gently glide a new segment of the floss in between each of your teeth and the gums below.  Slide the floss down into the gum line, forming the shape of a C. Move the floss around in this tight space to loosen bacteria, food particles and other gunk.

Do not use the same portion of floss for the next tooth.  Use a new section of the floss when cleaning each space between teeth.  When brushing, spend at least two minutes performing a full clean of your entire mouth.  This means cleaning the tongue, gums, the roof of your mouth, the teeth and even the inside portions of the cheeks.

Looking for a Healthy Mouth?  Watch What You Put in It

The chances of having a healthy mouth are greatly diminished if you are not mindful of your habits.  It is not enough to forego the majority of artificial sugar and processed foods in favor of a nutritious diet.  You must also eliminate tobacco and cigarettes as well. Most smokers are aware of the fact that tobacco is bad for overall biological health.  However, many are unaware of just how bad tobacco use is for the mouth. Tar and nicotine will eat away at the gums, stain the teeth and induce halitosis.  Tobacco can also harm bones beneath the teeth, heightening the chances of tooth loss and oral cancer. The bottom line is those who smoke or use tobacco in any other form must quit as soon as possible in order to have a healthy mouth.

In terms of foods that pose a direct threat to the mouth, everything from sugar to carbohydrates, citrus, red wine, coffee and tea can negatively impact the mouth. The effects of these beverages and foods extend beyond superficial stains. Citrus-based drinks and foods are acidic. The same is true of red wine. Sugar-laden drinks will erode tooth enamel and ramp up the chances of cavities.

A Healthy Mouth Is Not Used for Anything but Eating and Drinking

The teeth should not be used to open items.  Your chances of having a healthy mouth will be that much better if you limit the use of your teeth to eating.  Do not chew on pencils, pens, ice or anything else. Teeth should never be used as a tool. Though this might seem like common sense, a surprising number of people are willing to use their teeth to open things or for other purposes that have the potential to cause significant oral damage.

Please call Asha Dental today at (913) 440-4199!

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