If you’re a new mom or about to be one, you’re likely already used to putting your needs second to the needs of this beautiful new little person in your life – but maintaining good oral hygiene is still important for keeping you and your baby in tip-top shape. If something happens and you need dental work, it shouldn’t prevent you from breastfeeding regularly, or from seeking the dental treatment you need. Dr. Hawkins & Dr. Neidert are experienced Midlothian dentists who can explain how prioritizing your own health needs is safe and important during this stage of a woman’s life.
Dental Procedures Safe for Breastfeeding
You shouldn’t be surprised to hear that regular brushing and flossing is safe for breastfeeding mothers. In fact, it’s probably never felt more luxurious! Especially as you’re likely eating everything in sight (and perhaps indulging in sweet treats, too), it’s a good idea to keep those pearly whites as clean and healthy as possible. We know how difficult it is to take care of yourself with a new baby – but you deserve to be healthy, and a healthy mom is a better mom. Proactive measures are protective and important as your body goes through major hormonal changes. Not to mention, what mom has time for a lengthy dental procedure? Be proactive about your dental health right now to prevent complications later. If you are a breastfeeding mother in need of dental work, you’ll be happy to know most procedures won’t affect your milk or your baby. You will only need to pause breastfeeding for the short duration of your dental visits, and the following dental treatments are still safe while breastfeeding:
Dental Drugs Safe for Breastfeeding
Your body does an excellent job of processing medicine and other substances before they get to the baby via your milk, and the old practice of pump-and-dump is rarely recommended anymore. Most effects of drugs used in dentistry should wear off as soon as your procedure is over anyway, and you can be back to nursing your bub as soon as you’re home. The following drugs common in dental work are all safe for breastfeeding mothers:
- Local anesthetic
- Nitrous oxide (laughing gas)
- General anesthesia
Dr. Thomas Hale’s book “Medication and Mother’s Milk” is a great resource for more information on drug safety while breastfeeding. You should always share your full health history with your dentist and get your own pediatrician’s approval before receiving any dental treatment. Most dental work is totally compatible with a breastfeeding lifestyle. In fact, relaxing in the dentist chair may be the most quality alone time you get all week! Just remember, taking care of your own dental needs is essential for the overall health of you and your baby. Call us today to make an appointment for any regular cleanings or special dental treatment you need.
It’s common to see people wearing mouth guards in Midlothian for protection during all kinds of sports, such as football, basketball, and boxing – but did you know that lots of folks wear mouth guards at night for their dental health? People who grind their teeth (bruxism) and people with sleep apnea can get relief from their symptoms simply by wearing a specially-designed mouth guard at night. Dr. Hawkins & Dr. Neidert have helped many Midlothian residents improve their quality of life with night guards. Our team at Hawkins Family Dentistry invite you to come visit us today to find out more.
Night Guards for Bruxism
Bruxism, or teeth grinding, is a very common condition. Everyone grinds their teeth at some point, but some Midlothian folks do it so much (especially during the night) that it causes severe damage to their teeth, headaches, jaw aches, TMJ (temporomandibular joint disorder) issues, and more. The problem is that most bruxism sufferers don’t know that they are actually clenching and grinding their teeth. The best treatment for bruxism is wearing a night guard to protect your teeth from the most harmful grinding and clenching, which happens during sleep. The bruxism guards we offer at Hawkins Family Dentistry are custom-fitted to your mouth and extremely effective at protecting your teeth from damage and getting rid of bruxism symptoms.
Night Guards for Sleep Apnea Read more ›
Temporomandibular joint dysfunction is a really long name … so let’s call it TMJ. That sounds more familiar-you’ve probably heard it before. Maybe some lingering pain in your chewing muscles and bones even have you wondering if you have it. TMJ dysfunction is sometimes called TMD, TMJD, or TMJ Syndrome, especially if there seem to be a number of other jaw-related issues. Dr. Hawkins at Hawkins Family Dentistry is here to tell you more about TMJ and what to do if you’ve got it.
What is TMJ?
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Tagged with: TMJ
Fresh breath sets the tone for every moment of your day: first thing in the morning, before an important meeting, after working out, or just before bed. Whether you prefer cool mint, invigorating cinnamon, or herbal anise, it’s your favorite trusty toothpaste that delivers that fresh, clean feeling.
So, what’s the scoop on toothpaste? What knowledge is essential in order to get the most out of your toothpaste? You might be surprised as you learn more about this common product. Dr. Hawkins in Midlothian gives you the full story on toothpaste to empower you to take oral health into your own hands.
Are you or a loved one suffering from the toothache blues? Don’t wait around in pain for the problem to resolve itself. Although we do enjoy spending quality time with our patients at Hawkins Family Dentistry, we don’t want any Midlothian residents to have to undergo dental procedures that could have been avoided. A toothache can be a sign of a much more serious problem that should be addressed immediately, but there are a few things you can do at home, in the meantime, to get temporary relief from toothache pain.
Home Remedies: Read more ›
There is a law of nature that “function follows form.” It’s a saying that means that how something looks actually determines how it works.
For example, you may own many screwdrivers of different sizes and shapes (form) to loosen all different kinds of screws (function). Think of a watering can with a long spout that’s perfect for pouring water right where you want it, versus one with a broad spout to cover large areas more quickly.
This principle can also apply to your smile! A mouth missing teeth is not nearly as functional as a mouth with a full set of chompers. Enter: cosmetic dentistry. The word cosmetic makes these treatments sound optional, but many times they are truly needed to improve physical function or mental and emotional wellbeing. Read more ›
Nicknamed for the fact that they come into your mouth (and your life) by the time you are finally mature and supposedly “wise” wisdom teeth are simply molars in the far back of your mouth. Whether or not these molars cause you problems is anyone’s guess, but if you’re experiencing some specific pain in your gums and jaw, you may be wondering if you have impacted wisdom teeth.
Dr. Hawkins takes care of wisdom teeth from all around Midlothian! Let us tell you more about impacted wisdom teeth and what to do if you have them.
What are Impacted Wisdom Teeth?
Your wisdom teeth are the third and final set of molars you’ll get. They usually come in when you are between 17 and 21 years old, though some people’s wisdom teeth won’t come until much later, if at all. (Does that mean they never become wise? Hard to say.)
As with all teeth, wisdom teeth are expected to break through the gums and become totally visible when they emerge. However, in some situations, wisdom teeth stay deep in the jawbone or never break through your gums. In this case, the wisdom teeth are impacted.
Have you ever tried to shove one last book onto an already-full bookshelf? When your last set of teeth comes into an already-full mouth, it’s a similar situation. There simply may not be enough room for them and they may stay impacted under the gums. Read more ›
Good News for Grown Ups
“Adulting” can be hard. Between rent, bills, kids, a career, and other responsibilities, it can be hard to make time for yourself. But independence, parenting, fulfilling work, and the wisdom that comes with age can be pretty fantastic, too. So how does your oral healthcare fit into a grown up lifestyle?
- Priorities: You manage a lot on any given day. Brushing your teeth and making a dental appointment may not feel like the most pressing of matters, but you know they are important in the long run—so you do it.
- Family Life: Many people are more motivated to take care of their self when the habits easily fit in with family life and when you know someone is looking to you to set a good example. Whether you are caring for children or aging parents, preventative oral healthcare is more fun (and more likely to happen) together as a family.
- Benefits: If you have a job that provides dental coverage, there’s really no reason not to see the dentist. You should even be able to use paid time off for the appointment. Can anyone say “me time”?
- Holistic Dentistry: As we get older, we tend to know ourselves better. Holistic medicine is getting more popular as people consider all the ways one part of their health affects another. Keep solid notes on how your whole body and mouth are doing and share the notes with both your doctor and your dentist.
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What is Gum Disease?
The short answer: Gum disease is a common gum infection that can become very problematic, but you can prevent it!
The long answer: All over your body, tissues have a self-defense mechanism called “inflammation.” When bacteria build up in your mouth, your gum tissue will inflame to try and kill it. Inflammation of your gums is called gingivitis. Gingivitis looks like red, soft, and sore gum tissue.
Over time, gingivitis can lead to more troublesome gum disease (called periodontitis) that can grow even deeper and start to harm the bones of your teeth and jaw. Severe gum disease can wreak havoc in your mouth. Pregnant women need to be especially careful because gum disease is linked with pre-term births and babies with low birth weight.
Every mom and mom-to-be wants the best start for their little one, and their journey into parenthood. Read on from Dr. Hawkins at Hawkins Family Dentistry to learn more about gum disease and pregnancy.
Gum Disease, Pregnancy, and Birth Defects
Here are the facts: Read more ›
Someone once said, “Do not regret growing older. It is a privilege denied to many.” How true!
It can be disorienting and frustrating to watch your health change with age, but you don’t have to accept poor oral health and tooth loss as just a part of the game. On the contrary, your oral health is just as important now as ever, and it’s linked closely with your overall health and wellness.
Embrace healthy, preventative dental hygiene and reap the benefits of improved wellness and vitality during a season of life with so much to look forward to.
When it comes to senior health and dentistry, Dr. Hawkins shares the top concerns you may have, and how to address them:
A shocking 70% of adults over 65-years-old have gum disease, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss among seniors. Read more ›