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Choosing the Right Toothbrush

By Pamela Li, in Articles, on May 22, 2014 | Comments (0)

brushing teethOttawa, Ontario – Do you know how to choose the right toothbrush to keep your mouth healthy? There are so many options from which to choose – electric, manual, and so many brands of each. Dr. Pamela Li, an Ottawa cosmetic dentist, offers her top picks and explains what you should look for in a toothbrush.

“It’s best to look for a brush that has a small head so that it can be moved around your mouth more easily,” says Dr. Li, who is also a general dentist, serving patients of all ages. “Be sure the bristles are soft and that it fits comfortably in your hand.”

Dr. Li prefers electric toothbrushes. It is important to remember that electric toothbrushes are not the same as battery-powered ones. A battery-powered toothbrush is similar to a manual brush, but a battery makes it vibrate slightly, allowing you to clean a bit better than with a standard brush. An electric brush, on the other hand, will be rechargeable and will come with many different features. They can oscillate, vibrate, rotate or even use sonic technology to guarantee the best cleaning for your teeth. Features may include special modes for sensitive teeth, to massage your gums, or for whitening. Some models even have pressure sensors to alert you when you brush too hard, or reminders to alert you when you should replace the head of the brush.

To maintain the best dental care, Dr. Li recommends SoniCare and Oral B electric brushes. She explains that, as with most other things, you get what you pay for. While these brands may be more expensive, they are also the best to keep your teeth and gums clean and healthy. The good news is, while the initial investment may seem like a lot, they might actually save you money in the long run because they don’t need to be replaced as often as manual brushes.

Dr. Li also recommends the use of a waterpik, especially for patients who have braces or bridges. Also referred to as an oral irrigator, a waterpik uses a stream of pulsating water to remove food debris and plaque from between the teeth and below the gum line. It is very effective in flushing out debris around braces and bridges.

Other products that can help remove plaque include the Proxabrush and Softpicks. The Proxabrush is a specially designed brush system that can access hard to reach places between the teeth that tooth brushing alone may miss. It can be used on natural teeth, as well as around crowns, bridges, dental implants and orthodontic appliances. Likewise, a Softpick can dislodge food from between teeth, remove plaque and massage the gums. And for that hard to reach place in the back of your mouth behind your last tooth, there is the Sulcabrush. Invented by a Canadian dentist, this specialized brush can not only effectively clean the back of your last tooth, it can also easily get in between teeth to remove plaque build-up.

There are some patients who may have special needs requiring their toothbrush to be adapted so it can be handled better. For patients who have difficulty controlling their hands, arm or shoulder movements, Dr. Li offers a few ideas on how to adapt their standard toothbrush.

  • The handle of the brush can be enlarged using a bicycle grip or other like material to allow the patient a bigger surface to grip.
  • Use a rod to lengthen the toothbrush.
  • If the patient has problems gripping, attach the brush to the hand using Velcro straps or a hand brace.
  • Buy a brush whose handle can be bent to allow a better holding surface.

No matter what type of toothbrush you use, it is important to properly care for it. Toothbrushes should be allowed to dry in between uses. Bacteria grows in moisture, so a wet toothbrush can be a breeding ground for bacteria. Because of this, brushes should never be covered as this won’t allow them to ever fully dry.

Wash your brush thoroughly after each use, and be sure to wash your hands before brushing to remove any bacteria that could move from your hands to the brush.

Always store your toothbrush upright and never share a toothbrush with anyone, including family members. Bacteria can jump from one toothbrush to another, so never store brushes touching each other.

Replace your manual toothbrush every three months, or immediately following an illness. While the chances of becoming sick from a toothbrush are slim, continuing to use the same brush after an illness may transfer those germs back to you.

If you’re worried about bacteria growth on your toothbrush, there are several products on the market that claim to kill germs. There are sprays, rinses and UV light products that can eliminate the number of germs on your brush.

But perhaps most important is to use your brush, floss, and other products properly and often.

“Always brush your teeth twice a day and floss once a day,” says Dr. Li, whose dental clinic is located in downtown Ottawa. “This can prevent tooth decay and gum disease, but only if you are also brushing and flossing properly.”

Brush for two to three minutes a day, avoiding scrubbing too hard. If you are too rough with your teeth, you can start to break down the enamel that is the protective layer of the tooth. Hold your brush at a 45-degree angle, brushing gently in short strokes from the gum line to the top of the tooth. Brush all surfaces of the tooth, paying special attention to reach all of the crevices on the chewing surface. And don’t forget to brush your tongue to remove bacteria and help freshen your breath. Tongue scrapers are also effective in cleaning the surface of your tongue.

If you have question about which toothbrush is right for you, or have concerns about proper brushing and flossing technique, call Dr. Li’s office for advice. She and her staff can assist you with all of your dental questions. And remember to maintain regular, twice-yearly appointments with Dr. Li to ensure your mouth is healthy.

© 2014 Millionairium and Dr. Pamela Li. Authorization to post is granted, with the stipulation that Millionairium and Dr. Pamela Li are credited as sole source. Linking to other sites from this document is strictly prohibited, with the exception of herein imbedded links.

Ottawa Dentist Uses Latest Technological Advances

By Pamela Li, in News, on May 10, 2014 | Comments (0)

Dental care in OttawaOttawa, Ontario – When you’re looking for a dentist, you want to be sure you are looking for one who provides the greatest quality of care, and that means one who utilizes the latest advances in dental technology. As a Las Vegas Institute trained dentist, Dr. Pamela Li combines superior care with a commitment to technology to ensure her patients receive the best dental care available.

LVI is a world-renowned training facility for dentists. It uses a comprehensive and rigorous training program to better equip dentists with the knowledge and technology they need to treat all aspects of dentistry, with a focus on cosmetic dentistry and TMD disorders.

“As an LVI trained dentist, I am committed to providing high quality care that incorporates the use of technology to provide the best diagnoses and treatment options for my patients,” says Dr. Li, who has been an Ottawa dentist since 1994. “My office features state-of-the-art technology so that you can receive the best care possible.”

From digital radiography to Tens Units to computerized mandibular screening, Dr. Li uses the latest technological advances because she knows it results in the best care possible for her patients.

Her office uses only digital radiography, utilizing the award-winning Dexis system. This system exposes patients to 70-80 percent less radiation than traditional X-rays, so it is much safer. Not only that, images appear instantly and the dentist can magnify images. That results in a better picture of what is going on in the mouth, allowing the dentist to make a more accurate diagnosis. And if that’s not enough, digital radiography is better for the environment because there is no need for developer or fixer chemicals.

Neuromuscular problems can be treated with a Tens Unit. The low-frequency transcutaneous electrical neural stimulation unit works by delivering a small electrical impulse to the muscles that are responsible for jaw movement. These impulses will relax the jaw, resulting in increased blood flow to flush away any toxins. In as little as an hour, patients can experience a more relaxed jaw that is able to find a more optimal position.

Other alignment issues can be diagnosed with a K7, or computerized mandibular scanning unit. The K7 will record proper alignment of the jaw, range of motion and the opening and closing trajectory of the jaws. It can also measure muscle activity to determine a physiologic rest position of the jaw. Using a sonograph that measures the sounds in the jaw joint, Dr. Li can also determine if a patient’s jaw is damaged and to what extent.

“Another technology that benefits my patients is my experience with soft tissue lasers in periodontal therapy,” says Dr. Li. “I use soft tissue lasers in gum recontouring, crown lengthening, frenectomies and a host of other procedures. Laser technology offers so many benefits to my patients, including extreme precision, minimal bleeding and less discomfort and trauma to the area I’m working on. That means minimal healing time and limited or no scarring for my patients.”

Additionally, Dr. Li uses the latest technological advances to screen and treat snoring and sleep apnea. The Medibyte by Braebon is a portable polysomnograph unit that patients can use in the comfort of their own bed and home instead of going to a sleep clinic or hospital.  The data recorded can be sent to a certified sleep physician for diagnosis. By staying dedicated to the latest technology, Dr. Li can provide the best care and treatment options for her patients.

© 2014 Millionairium and Dr. Pamela Li. Authorization to post is granted, with the stipulation that Millionairium and Dr. Pamela Li are credited as sole source. Linking to other sites from this document is strictly prohibited, with the exception of herein imbedded links.

Dental versus Cosmetic Reasons for Braces

By Pamela Li, in News, on March 6, 2014 | Comments (0)

BracesOttawa, Ontario – Do you think your teeth are crooked and you could benefit from wearing braces? For many patients, braces are a medical necessity to improve the mouth function and ensure proper dental care. For some others, they are purely a cosmetic enhancement. Which type of patient are you?

“The reasons for choosing braces are as different as the patients who wear them,” says Dr. Pamela Li, an Ottawa dentist. “For patients who suffer from malocclusions, such as overbites or underbites, braces are needed to improve the function of their teeth and jaws and prevent future dental issues. But for others, they simply may think their gap or crossed over teeth are a bit unsightly.”

The way your teeth fit together is known as occlusion. Some people suffer from malocclusions, which is misalignment of the teeth. There are three types of malocclusions. A Class I malocclusion is the ideal relationship between the upper and lower teeth. While the teeth function properly, there can still be crowding or spacing present. A Class II is commonly referred to as an overbite. The patient will present with lower molars positioned posterior and the upper jaw will appear to protrude forward. A Class III is referred to as an underbite. The lower molar will be positioned anterior and the lower jaw will protrude forward.

While some patients may have an ideal bite, they may still have some degree of crowding or spacing that they deem unattractive. In these instances, braces may not be as necessary, but a cosmetic dentist may still work with the patient to help them achieve their ideal smile.

“There are many reasons why our teeth become crowded looking,” says Dr. Li. “Sometimes a mouth isn’t quite large enough to accommodate all of the permanent teeth. Losing baby teeth too early or too late can also be a factor, because this can inhibit the growth of the permanent tooth, forcing it to erupt in an incorrect position. Sometimes the jaws don’t develop properly due to bad oral habits such as mouth breathing, thumb sucking and other bad oral habits. This will result in constriction of the jawbones, crowding and a bad bite.”

There are also as many reasons for spacing in the teeth as there are for crowding. Small teeth or jaw size can contribute to spacing issues. While many people, such as pop star Madonna, choose to embrace their spacing, still others might find it unsightly and would like the gap closed.

For patients who suffer Class II or III malocclusions, braces are deemed more of a dental necessity to ensure their jaws work properly. Crowded teeth aren’t able to be cleaned as well, which leads to decay. Over time, if these problem aren’t fixed, malocclusions can lead to other serious dental issues, such as decay and periodontal disease. Additionally, improper bites can lead to wear of the teeth and eventual breakage.

The good news is, no matter what your reason for choosing braces, there is now a straightening option for everyone. Dental technology is rapidly progressing, so patients have a variety of options to choose from. Invisalign allows patients to comfortably and discretely achieve a better smile. Lower profile options, such as self-ligating and lingual braces, also give patients a more aesthetically pleasing way to straighten their teeth.

If you feel you could benefit from braces, now is the time to schedule an appointment with your cosmetic dentist and get the smile you deserve.
© 2014 Millionairium and Dr. Pamela Li. Authorization to post is granted, with the stipulation that Millionairium and Dr. Pamela Li are credited as sole source. Linking to other sites from this document is strictly prohibited, with the exception of herein imbedded links.

Things to Think About This Valentine’s Day

By Pamela Li, in Articles, on February 23, 2014 | Comments (0)

Chocolates for Valentine's DayOttawa, Ontario – Valentine’s Day is just around the corner. While we’re running to get our last minute gifts, Dr. Pamela Li, an Ottawa dentist, has some tips for people to keep in mind when celebrating the holiday.

“Valentine’s Day is the day of love, and often chocolate and other sweet, delectable treats,” says Dr. Li, who has a family dentist practice. “But we also need to remember to maintain our oral health during this holiday, and not let bad habits creep in that can damage our mouths and teeth.”

Did you know that American spend roughly $345 million dollars on Valentine’s candy each year, and consume nearly 58 million pounds of chocolate on the holiday? All of that can spell disaster for your oral health!

The bacteria in plaque create acid when it comes into contact with sugar. This acid then attacks your teeth, working to destroy the protective enamel coating. The bacteria that causes cavities thrives in sweets, so it is especially important to pay close attention to your oral health when you consume sweets. And some sweets are worse on the teeth than others. Sticky treats, as well as those that dissolve slowly, such as lollipops, hard candies, toffee and taffy can wreak extra havoc on teeth. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t partake this Valentine’s Day, says Dr. Li.

“Eating candies in moderation, paired with a healthy oral care regimen, is fine,” says Dr. Li. “Always remember to brush and floss twice daily, and pay special attention to your teeth if you’ve indulged in particularly sweet or sticky treats.”

Another thing to remember is that bacteria doesn’t just come from the food and drinks we consume – it comes from other places as well, such as the mouth of our partner. And that leads us to another important dental care tip – never share your toothbrush with anyone, even your spouse or children. Just like kissing on the lips, sharing your toothbrush with others can introduce harmful bacteria to your mouth that could lead to tooth decay or other oral diseases.

There are several issues that arise when sharing a toothbrush. For some people, brushing can cause their gums to bleed. That means if you share a toothbrush with someone with bleeding gums, you are exposed to their blood and any diseases found in their bloodstream, such as hepatitis. Even if there is no bleeding, other viruses like the flu or cold sores are very contagious, not to mention the bacteria that cause cavities and periodontal disease.

Valentine’s Day is the day of love, but did you know that kissing can also introduce bacteria that can result in tooth decay? It’s true – just like sharing a toothbrush with the one you love, kissing can also introduce harmful bacteria into our mouths. To decrease the odds that harmful bacteria enters your mouth while kissing, maintain a good oral care regimen and avoid kissing on the lips while one of you is sick.

Kissing may also be a factor in spreading the most common sexually transmitted disease, the human papillomavirus, which in some cases can lead to oral cancer.

You may not realize it, but often times your dentist may be the first line of defense against serious illnesses such as cancer. In fact, checking for early signs of oral cancer is part of a regular dental check-up. During your routine visit, your dentist will check your gums, the inside of your cheeks and your tongue, as well as the roof and floor of your mouth very carefully. She is looking for the following signs that could indicate cancer:

  • Red or white patches,
  • Sores that bleed easily or do not heal,
  • Thick, hard spots or lumps,
  • Roughened or crusted areas.

Additionally, your dentist will ask if you have been experiencing numbness, pain or tenderness, or a change in the way your teeth fit together when you bite down. It is important to always disclose any issues such as these to your dentist.

Tobacco use and heavy drinking can be contributing factors to oral cancer, as can infection with some forms of HPV. HPV is a virus that infects skin and wet surfaces of the body, like the mouth and genitals. While there are more than 100 different types of HPV, the most common form appears as warts. High-risk HPV types may also cause a form of throat cancer, called oropharyngeal cancer. Studies show that nearly seven percent of the population may have oral HPV, while one percent may have the type that can result in oropharyngeal cancers.  Oral HPV is three times more common in men than in women.

There aren’t a lot of studies that have determined how people contract HPV, and the ones there are often contain conflicting information. Some suggest that HPV may be contracted during oral sex and open-mouthed kissing, however. Some experts believe that increasing numbers of people are engaging in sexual activities with multiple partners, and as a result of oral sex practices, may be contracting HPV in the head and neck region. This is then leading to an increased rate of oral cancer.

“This topic isn’t a pleasant one to talk about, especially around Valentine’s Day,” says Dr. Li. “But I take my job of screening and detecting oral cancer and other pathologies very seriously. I’m not only interested in your teeth, but in how to help you achieve and maintain optimum health in all areas of your life. While I cannot diagnose cancer, I can identify suspicious looking areas of the mouth that require further evaluation, and counsel you on life habits that may be dangerous to your health.”

Because you should see your dental care expert twice a year, he or she may be the best to locate evidence of HPV. Through a visual and tactile exam, as well as an oral history that takes into account signs and symptoms you may have experienced, he or she can determine if you may need further screening.

“HPV is the most common sexually transmitted disease and is the leading cause of oropharyngeal cancers,” says Dr. Li. “It’s extremely important to maintain regular visits with your dental and health care providers, and to discuss any lingering issues with them. If you notice abnormal growths, tenderness, discoloration or bleeding, it’s important to contact me right away.”

While Valentine’s Day is a day to celebrate love, it is also important to remember the dangers that can be lurking around the corner. From tooth decay to serious diseases, such as oral cancer, there are very real risks associated the day of love. If you think you may be at risk for oral diseases or especially if you fear you may have cause to be concerned about oral cancer, make an appointment with your dental or health care professional today.

© 2014 Millionairium and Dr. Pamela Li. Authorization to post is granted, with the stipulation that Millionairium and Dr. Pamela Li are credited as sole source. Linking to other sites from this document is strictly prohibited, with the exception of herein imbedded links.

Avoid the Sugar Rush of Halloween

By Pamela Li, in News, on October 10, 2013 | Comments (0)

Overindulging in Sweets Ottawa, Ontario – The costumes will soon be out and children everywhere will fill the streets to gather up Halloween goodies. It’s a child’s dream, and often an Ottawa general dentist’s nightmare. Sugary treats abound on Halloween, so how can we encourage our children, and ourselves, to avoid overindulging?

“Overindulging in sweets isn’t just harmful to our waistlines,” says Dr. Pamela Li, who owns an Ottawa dental clinic. “Sugary treats are consumed by bacteria in your mouth to create acid. It is the acid that causes the breakdown of enamel and forms cavities.”

Begin by discussing the importance of healthy eating with your children. Explain proper nutrition and that treats are OK in moderation. Teach them proper dental care techniques to remove sugar residue from their teeth. Brushing and flossing twice a day will help children avoid cavities. Have them regularly visit an Ottawa dentist to be sure their teeth and gums are healthy.

Once children understand the importance of healthy eating, encourage children to be a part of picking out treats that are low in sugar. Teach older children how to read nutrition labels so they can pick out treats that are healthier options at the store.

“On Halloween night, let your home be an example of healthy living,” says Dr. Li, who is also an Ottawa cosmetic dentistry provider. “Instead of the usual candy bars and sugar filled snacks, brainstorm other ideas with your children. Healthier snacks, such as raisins or pretzels, are a wonderful option. Or you can even come up with fun treats that aren’t food at all. Consider handing out items such as temporary tattoos, bouncy balls, Halloween jewelry, spooky spiders, etc. Your children will love helping to pick out fun treats like this to hand out.”

After your children have been trick or treating, it is important not to let them overindulge in the treats they have received. Consider parceling out their candy for them, allowing them a certain amount each day after Halloween.

“Some parents have great tactics for helping their children avoid eating too many sweets,” says Li. “Consider letting your child pick out their 10 favorite pieces of candy, then donate the rest to a charity that could use the candy. Candy can be sent in care packages to soldiers serving around the world, bringing a bit of holiday cheer to them. If you have a child who has a winter birthday, consider using the extra candy in goody bags or to fill a piñata. Get creative, and allow your children to be a part of the conversation.”

Halloween is a fun time to enjoy delicious treats, in moderation. Parents should remember to take their children for regular checkups with their dentist to be sure their teeth and gums are healthy. Checkups are recommended every 6 months.

© 2013 Sinai Marketing and Dr. Pamela Li. Authorization to post is granted, with the stipulation that Sinai Marketing and Dr. Pamela Li are credited as sole source. Linking to other sites from this document is strictly prohibited, with the exception of herein imbedded links.

Tooth Sensitivity Explained

By Pamela Li, in News, on August 11, 2013 | Comments (0)

Sensitive Teeth
Ottawa, Ontario – Do you bristle every time you try to enjoy a food or drink that is too hot or too cold? Are you looking for an answer to why your teeth are suddenly sensitive? Dr. Pamela Li, who runs an Ottawa dental clinic, has some answers.

“Sensitive teeth can be more than just annoying,” says Li, an Ottawa Invisalign provider. “They can be downright painful for some people. The level of discomfort will vary depending on the patient. Some people may experience a momentary tingling feeling, while others may experience longer lasting, shooting pain.”

It is important for dental patients to understand what causes tooth sensitivity. Dentists everywhere explain that most tooth sensitivity is caused by gum recession which leaves the root exposed. The root is covered by cementum which is softer and less protective than enamel. Also a loss of the enamel can leave the dentin, or soft part of the tooth closest to the nerve, exposed. Over time, patients can experience a loss of enamel or receding gum lines.

The dentine of a tooth contains many tubes or pores that run from the surface of the tooth to the nerve in the center. Leaving these pores exposed due to loss of enamel or other reasons means that cold or heat or other stimuli can reach the nerve, causing discomfort.

Gum recession can happen naturally as a person ages, or it can be the result of improper brushing. Gum disease also can expose the root because the disease causes bone loss and the gum line to recede. Patients should maintain regular Ottawa dental work appointments to monitor and treat gum disease as needed.

Other causes of tooth sensitivity include drinking too many acidic beverages. Soda, fruit juice and many other beverages contain high acidity that can break down the tooth enamel over time. Tooth grinding wears down the teeth and leaves the dentin of the tooth exposed. Tooth clenching and grinding can actually cause the loss of cementum and dentin at the gumline resulting in notches at the gumline. Brushing incorrectly, brushing too often, or using the wrong toothpaste can also contribute to tooth sensitivity. Brushing teeth with abrasive toothpastes can actually brush away the enamel that is needed to protect the dentin. Chipped or damaged teeth should be repaired right away to avoid exposing the dentin for too long.

Once patients know what may be causing their sensitive teeth, what can they do about it?

“There are some simple ways patients can help relieve their tooth sensitivity,” says Li. “The first is by maintaining a proper oral health regimen. Brushing twice daily using a low-abrasive, fluoride toothpaste and soft-bristled toothbrush is an important first step. Patients should also be sure to floss regularly.”

In addition, patients should remove acidic and sugary foods and beverages from their diet as much as possible. Patients should maintain regular appointments with their dentist, and follow all dental care advice given by their dentist. For patients who regularly grind their teeth during their sleep, a dentist may recommend wearing a mouth guard to prevent tooth erosion.

Before undergoing tooth whitening treatments, speak with your dental care provider about how to properly whiten your teeth and avoid creating issues with sensitivity at the same time. If you begin to suspect you suffer from tooth decay or gum disease, or experience a damaged or broken tooth, visit your dentist right away to begin treatment for the issue.

With a little bit of proper care, and understanding what causes the issue, patients can relieve tooth sensitivity issues and eat and drink normally. For a complete diagnosis, it is always best to schedule an appointment with your dental care provider.

© 2013 Sinai Marketing and Dr. Pamela Li. Authorization to post is granted, with the stipulation that Sinai Marketing and Dr. Pamela Li are credited as sole source. Linking to other sites from this document is strictly prohibited, with the exception of herein imbedded links.

Adults Orthodontics Are More than Just a Trend

By Pamela Li, in News, on April 15, 2013 | Comments (0)

Ottawa Emergency Dentist Provides Orthodontic TreatmentVancouver, British Columbia – More and more adults throughout the world, including in Ottawa, are turning to their dentist for braces, and not just relying on them for standard cleanings and emergency dentistry in Ottawa. From the red carpet to your neighbor next door, braces have become the latest fashion accessory, and with new advances, you might not even realize your friends are wearing braces.

“When people picture someone with braces, they generally think of an adolescent with a mouth full of metal,” says Dr. Pamela Li, an Ottawa cosmetic dentist “But today that stereotype is being thrown out as more adults are realizing the benefits of having a straighter smile. And because technology has advanced so much, there are numerous options for patients to choose from to straighten their teeth discretely.”

Straight teeth are about so much more than just an ideal smile. While many patients might turn to braces to boost their self-esteem, a straighter smile might just save them time in a dentist’s chair later in life. Malocclusions such as overbites and underbites that go unfixed can lead to serious issues. Chewing problems, abnormal tooth wear, tooth loss, gum disease and sometimes even TMJ disorder can result from malocclusions that go unchecked.

Patients who didn’t receive treatment during their adolescent years are now flocking to the dentist’s office because of the amazing advances we’ve seen in cosmetic dentistry in recent years. No longer do adults have to be embarrassed by their smiles, but too embarrassed to fix them because of the thought of wearing metal braces that might be unsightly.

“Patients have more options than ever before to choose from,” says Dr. Li, who offers dental implants in Ottawa, dentures and porcelain veneers. “Teeth straightening options today are more comfortable and more discrete, and in some cases, even faster than standard metal braces. That means patients can get the smile they’ve always wanted much quicker and in a more aesthetically pleasing way.”

Professional adults love invisalign braces because of its comfortable, removable and invisible aligners. And now with its new SmartTrack aligners, Invisalign has gotten even better for patients. Patients wear a comfortable aligner for two weeks at a time over the course of their treatment. SmartTrack Aligners are even more comfortable and fit to the teeth even better than previous aligners did. Patients love that the aligners are invisible, giving them the discreteness they desire, and that they are removable, allowing them to eat and drink as usual and maintain their standard oral care regimen.

More dentists and orthodontists are also using lingual and self-ligating braces. Lingual braces fit onto the tongue side of teeth, which makes them invisible to the naked eye. They work well for musicians, especially those playing wind instruments, and athletes who play contact sports. Self-ligating braces have a lower profile than standard metal braces because they don’t use metal or elastic ties. They also work more efficiently to move teeth, so patients can sometimes shave months off their treatment times.

Ceramic braces blend right in with a patient’s teeth, so their friends and colleagues won’t even notice them.

When choosing to correct their smile, it’s important for patients to work closely with their dentist or orthodontist to create a proper treatment plan with realistic goals. Not all of the options described are appropriate for each patient, and some patients may require additional work before treatment can begin. Patients who have experienced bone loss, tooth breakdown or who have small jaws may require additional periodontal work, and in some cases even jaw surgery to achieve their desired results. No matter what option you choose, there’s no need to live with a less than perfect smile. Schedule a consultation with your dentist or orthodontist today to learn which treatment is best for you.

© 2013 Sinai Marketing and Dr. Pamela Li. Authorization to post is granted, with the stipulation that Sinai Marketing and Dr. Pamela Li are credited as sole source. Linking to other sites from this document is strictly prohibited, with the exception of herein imbedded links.

Geriatric Dentistry – Why It’s Important and How it Can Keep You Healthy

By Pamela Li, in News, on February 24, 2013 | Comments (0)

Ottawa, Ontario – Senior citizens know all the reasons why it is important to maintain regular checkups with their physicians and other healthcare specialists. But what they might not know is that maintaining regular checkups with their dentists is just as important.

“Dental problems in senior citizens are fairly common,” says Dr. Pamela Li, an Ottawa, ON dentist who specializes in geriatric dentistry. “Oral health directly impacts a person’s overall health and needs to be taken seriously. Researchers are now learning that many diseases can have oral symptoms, in fact some studies even show a correlation between gum disease and heart disease.”

According to dental clinic in Ottawa, the most common issues facing senior citizens are dry mouth and periodontal disease. And the risk factors associated with periodontal disease are strikingly similar to those of cardiovascular disease.  A patient’s chances of developing periodontal disease increase if they are smokers, have poor diets, are overweight, do not exercise or lead stressful lives.

Studies indicate that patients who suffer from severe periodontal disease may have their risk of fatal heart disease double, while their chance of stroke increases as well. The health of the mouth are so interrelated to the rest of the body that in some cases, a tooth infection can cause bacterial endocarditis, an infection of the heart’s inner linings.

Family dentistry practices are leading the way in helping senior citizens get the proper oral healthcare they deserve. A growing number of dentists such as Dr. Li are seeking additional training courses in geriatric dentistry to help senior citizens receive excellent dental care in Ottawa. In addition to understanding the workings of the mouth, dentists also must understand and be sensitive to the aging process.

Senior citizens face many issues that may make taking care of their teeth harder. For instance, arthritis can cause limited dexterity, making it hard or even painful to brush their teeth. They may be weak and can’t stand at the bathroom sink long enough to brush their teeth on their own.

“It’s very important for family members to remind their loved ones to maintain their oral health,” says Dr. Li, whose Ottawa office fits patients with dentures. “It’s easy to become distracted by all of the other things that go along with old age. If we can remember to encourage our family members to brush and floss regularly, and maintain regular appointments with their dentists, we might actually be helping them prolong their lives. Without proper care, our older loved ones can face higher instances of heart disease, diabetes and other diseases.” says Dr.Pamela Li, dentist headaches in Ottawa.

It’s important for senior citizens who wear dentures to maintain regular appointments to be sure their dentures fit properly. Over time, a patient’s bone can begin to deteriorate, and the dentures will no longer rest comfortably as they once did. This can cause problems chewing food, and in severe cases, may cause seniors to limit the types of foods they eat. This can lead to poor nutrition.

Today, fewer patients are requiring the use of dentures. In patients who do, they can opt for implants, instead. The implant attaches directly to the jaw bone and a tooth then attaches onto the implant. These implant dentures fit better than standard dentures, making eating much easier for seniors.

Perhaps the most common issue facing senior citizens is dry mouth. Many medications senior citizens may take to regulate other diseases can lead to dry mouth. It has serious side effects, such as a more acidic mouth, which can leave teeth more susceptible to cavities. Many seniors also suffer from gum recession and exposed roots.  Since there is no enamel protecting the root surface, root decay is very common and difficult to treat. Dry mouth can also make it difficult to chew, talk and swallow. Patients who suffer from dry mouth should consult with their physician and dentist concerning the dosage of the medications they are taking. For severe cases, a prescription may be given for a drug that can increase salivary function. Patients should drink plenty of water and avoid citrus, caffeinated and alcoholic beverages, as well as tobacco and salty and dry foods.

“It is so important that a healthy dental care regimen is started at a young age,” says Dr. Li. “If you care for your teeth when you’re young, you’ll increase your chances of having a healthy mouth as you age. But it’s never too late to begin taking your teeth, and the effect they have on the rest of your health, seriously.”

Patients should floss daily and brush their teeth at least twice a day with fluoride toothpaste. Dentists can recommend fluoride rinses and gels to help senior citizens prevent cavities. Dentists should always be kept apprised of changes in medication, as well as limits in physical ability to care for teeth. Senior citizens, even those who may no longer have their own teeth, need to maintain regular dental checkups to ensure total mouth health. Following these and other preventative measures, such as snacking moderately and avoiding foods and drinks high in sugar and acid, can help ensure a healthy mouth for a lifetime.

© 2013 Sinai Marketing and Dr. Pamela Li. Authorization to post is granted, with the stipulation that Sinai Marketing and Dr. Pamela Li are credited as sole source. Linking to other sites from this document is strictly prohibited, with the exception of herein imbedded links.

Ottawa Family Dentistry Expert Celebrates Anniversary of Graduation and Practice Opening

By Pamela Li, in News, on May 6, 2012 | Comments (0)

OTTAWA, ONTARIO – Twenty years after graduating from dental school, Ottawa family dentistry expert Dr. Pamela Li is proud to celebrate the 15th anniversary of opening her own dental practice.

In May 1992, Dr. Li graduated from the University of Toronto with her dental degree. After completing a residency at St. Luke’s Memorial Hospital in Utica, N.Y., she spent one year at the Moose Factory General Hospital on the Moose Factory Indian Reservation in Northern Ontario and after associating for other dentists in her hometown of Ottawa for three years, Dr. Li bought her own practice in June 1997.

In August 2008, Dr. Li moved her practice to its current location where she employs four staff members: dental hygienists Rhonda and Lena, dental assistant Letitia and receptionist Donna. (more…)

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