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Batting for Smiles

During the months of August and September, Scottsdale Dental Arts, the dental practice of Jason D. McCargar, DMD, is teaming up as an Official Partner of the Arizona Diamondbacks and Fry’s Food Stores to sponsor Batting for Smiles, a program designed to help promote healthy smiles for children in grades 1 through 6.

Difficult economic conditions have had a negative impact on the health of Arizona’s children at a time when they are undergoing the most dynamic changes in their physical and mental development. Scottsdale Dental Arts, the Arizona Diamondbacks, and Fry’s Food Stores are committed to working together to help raise healthy children by emphasizing the importance of good oral hygiene, preventive dentistry, exercise, and good nutrition to control the onset of disease.

To join our Batting for Smiles team, parents can register their children in grades 1 through 6 by using their Fry’s V.I.P card between August 4 and September 11 at any Fry’s Food Store’s valley location. Your children will then be entered into a drawing to win the grand prize, which is the opportunity to welcome an Arizona Diamondbacks’ player and Dr. McCargar to their school to teach them how to have a lifetime of winning smiles!

The Link Between Dental Care and Diabetes

According to recent clinical studies a link between periodontitis and other chronic inflammatory conditions such as heart disease and diabetes has been discovered. Inflammation occurs after infection or injury to protect your body and to help it in the healing process. However, inflammation that stays for long periods of time can actually cause disease. Periodontitis is a form of chronic inflammation occuring in the gum tissue and surrounding bone. It is an advanced stage of gum disease that requires aggressive dental treatment because it can lead to tooth loss, and also increased risk of disease. One particular disease that it has been linked to is diabetes. The inflammation from periodontitis can increase blood glucose levels which can lead to diabetes over time. Dr. McCargar, DMD, says “It is important to see a dentist regularly so that you can prevent, detect, and treat gum disease.”

Does bad breath "Bug" you?

The garlic that you ate for lunch is not the only thing that can cause bad breath. People with periodontal disease have a 15% higher chance of having a bacteria inside their mouth that can release an odor causing gas. That bacteria is called H. pylori. Generally, the bacteria is found in your stomach and can cause stomach ulcers and heartburn. However, the stomach ulcer bug can also cause bad breath. If you have persistent heartburn and halitosis ask your doctor or dentist about medications that can help to treat this condition. Dr. Jason McCargar, DMD says that by treating the heartburn with a proton pump inhibitor and also treating the periodontal disease at the same time, patients can drastically decrease the incidence of halitosis (bad breath). To completely irradicate the stomach bacteria, however a series of antibiotics plus proton pump inhibitors must be used for a 14 day period. Ask your primary care physician about your treatment options if you have heart burn more than 2 days per week.

What are sealants?

The American Dental Association, defines dental sealants as a type of plastic material applied to teeth, to prevent dental cavities. According to Dr. Jason McCargar, DMD, sealants are a highly effective option to help prevent cavities. They are proven safe and are cost-effective for those patients that are prone to cavities. The majority of cavities occur in the small pits and crevices on and in-between teeth where food gets caught. Because the teeth in the back of the mouth (molars and premolars) have the most natural grooves and fissures on their biting surfaces, certain areas of these teeth are often difficult to clean even with vigorous tooth-brushing. Therefore, these are often the teeth that benefit the most from dental sealants. First the affected area of the tooth must be clean and dry, then a thin layer of liquid plastic material is applied and allowed to dry and harden. Dental sealants may remain effective for five years or longer, although sealants do wear naturally with chewing and may become damaged over time. Often an area that would easily become a cavity is saved by simply “sealing-off” the space between the tooth and any future bacteria or future food particles. However, the dental sealants do not protect against gum disease, so regular dental checkups are still important for overall oral health.