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Great oral health starts early and habits formed while your child is young can last a lifetime. You can start by gently cleaning their mouth before they even have a tooth, using a clean piece of muslin or a damp washcloth to wipe their gums, removing excess milk or formula.

When they do begin to get their teeth, make an appointment to come and see us here at The No Brace Centre. We can check your child’s teeth and jaw are developing properly, as well as advise you on how to best provide for your child’s rapidly changing dental hygiene needs. As your child gets older, get them involved and interested in their oral health. Let them choose their own toothbrush and kids’ toothpaste. They will need you to brush for them until they develop sufficient dexterity and the motor skills to manipulate a toothbrush. If they want to have a go at brushing for themselves, try brushing your teeth at the same time so they can copy your movements, or you can guide their hand as they brush so they get the idea.

You will find that we can also give you lots of advice and information on healthy foods for strong teeth, and we can work with you to reduce their risk of cavities.

Many people associate white teeth with good health and youthfulness and this is one reason why tooth whitening treatments are so popular, but you shouldn’t be worried if your teeth are a less than dazzling white. Everybody’s teeth are a slightly different shade and this helps make us all so unique. The colour for a tooth comes from the dentine layer that is just underneath the hard opaque, outer layer of dental enamel. Initially, teeth are covered in a thick layer of enamel but this gradually thins with age, allowing more of the natural tooth colour to shine through.

Provided your teeth are free from decay, they will still be perfectly healthy. What’s more important is the colour of your gums.

Are Your Gums in the Pink?

Healthy gums should be a nice pale pink, and when you touch them they should feel firm and will fit snugly around your teeth. If your gums look red or almost purple, or if they feel tender, swollen or bleed easily, then you have problems and it is time to see us. This is because you could have gum disease, a bacterial infection that is incredibly common.

Without prompt treatment gum disease will destroy the gums, the ligaments holding your teeth in their sockets, and eventually the bone surrounding your teeth. It is the major cause of tooth loss in the world, but the good news is that the early signs can be completely reversed, before any permanent damage is caused. Once you have healthy gums, they are relatively easy to maintain through good daily oral hygiene that includes brushing and flossing.

Regular examinations are the best way to detect any early signs of gum disease and our friendly dental team can also advise you on tooth and gum care at home.

How bad is Sugar Really?

14 September 2016
Oral Care Melbourne

Our cells need sugar for energy, so our liking for the sweet stuff does make perfect sense. Unfortunately the amount of sugar consumed, and our ease of access has changed dramatically and over the centuries it has changed from being a luxury item to one regarded by many as a necessity.

On average, we consume around 100grams to 150grams of sugar each day and sugars can be found in numerous healthy fruits and vegetables. The sugars that are ‘hidden’ in processed foods are causing much greater concern. These are called free sugars and include glucose, fructose and monosaccharaides and disaccharides, as well as those naturally found in honey, fruit juice, syrups and fruit concentrates.

Recent guidelines issued by the World Health Organization recommend that everyone reduce their intake of free sugars to less than 10% of their daily energy consumption. This would mean eating roughly 50 grams of sugar each day. The WHO would like to see this level reduced even further to just 5% of daily intake, in order to provide greater health benefits, not to mention the beneficial effects on your teeth.

One of the problems with sugar is its low satiety value; in other words, drinking a can of sugar-laden fizzy drink just won’t fill you up, in spite of the calories consumed. In addition, sugar causes insulin levels to spike. Insulin tells the body when to store fat and blocks the hormone responsible for telling you when you are full. As a result there is an association between sugar consumption and Type II diabetes, a disease that is becoming increasingly prevalent in developed countries.

Cutting down on sugar can only be a good thing and if you read the food labels you’ll soon find out just where it is hiding.

Ingredients

1 cup coconut milk
1 cup water
1/3 cup melted coconut oil
1 cup jasmine rice
½ tsp sea salt
2 tbsp tamari or coconut amimos
1 tbsp Sriracha
3 peeled and cubed sweet potatoes
1 tbsp melted coconut oil
1 tsp toasted sesame oil
1 tsp paprika
1 cup coconut flakes, unsweetened
1 bunch lactino kale, sliced into strips with ribs removed
1/2 pounds salmon, divided into 4 fillets

Instructions

  1. Rinse rice in cold water and drain and place in saucepan with water, salt and coconut milk. Bring to a boil, stir, reduce heat and cook on a gentle simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to stand for at least 10 minutes, or until ready serve.
  2. Preheat oven to 400oF or 200o Combine sesame oil, Sriracha, coconut aminos and melted coconut oil by shaking vigorously in a lidded jar until the mixture is thoroughly emulsified.
  3. Put the sweet potatoes on a baking tray and coat with 1 tbsp of melted coconut oil and paprika and cook for 30 minutes until tender.
  4. Put the kale and coconut flakes on a baking sheet and coat with 2/3 or the dressing. Use another 1 or 2 tablespoons of dressing to coat the salmon fillets. Bake the salmon, kale and coconut flakes halfway through the cooking time for the sweet potatoes. Cook until everything is done, taking care not to let the kale burn.
  5. Serve with the jasmine rice and drizzle with the remaining dressing. Enjoy!

Serves 4