Our Blog

The Effects of Biting Your Nails

October 17th, 2018

Also known as onchophagia, the habit of nail biting is one of the so-called “nervous habits” that can be triggered by stress, excitement, or boredom. Approximately half of all kids between the ages of ten and 18 have been nail biters at one time or another. Experts say that about 30 percent of children and 15 percent of adults are nail biters, however most people stop chewing their nails by the time they turn 30.

Here are four dental and general reasons to stop biting your nails:

1. It’s unsanitary: Your nails harbor bacteria and germs, and are almost twice as dirty as fingers. What’s more, swallowing dirty nails can lead to stomach problems.

2. It wears down your teeth: Gnawing your nails can put added stress on your pearly whites, which can lead to crooked teeth.

3. It can delay your orthodontic treatment: For those of our patients wearing braces, nail biting puts additional pressure on teeth and weakens roots.

4. It can cost you, literally: It has been estimated that up to $4,000 in extra dental bills can build up over a lifetime.

Dr. Brar and our team recommend the following to kick your nail biting habit:

  • Keep your nails trimmed short; you’ll have less of a nail to bite.
  • Coat your nails with a bitter-tasting nail polish.
  • Ask us about obtaining a mouthguard, which can help prevent nail biting.
  • Put a rubber band around your wrist and snap it whenever you get the urge to gnaw on your nails.
  • Think about when and why you chew your nails. Whether you are nervous or just bored, understanding the triggers can help you find a solution and stop the habit.
  • If you can’t stop, behavioral therapy may be an effective option to stop nail biting. Ask Dr. Brar and our team for a recommendation.

My child is getting blood blisters; is this normal?

October 10th, 2018

Thanks for the question. The “blisters” you are referring to are actually a normal part of losing baby teeth. Sometimes when teeth start to come through, children experience some bleeding under the skin, which typically causes small blisters or bruises on your child’s gums. The blisters, bluish in color, will disappear once the tooth comes through, and the tooth itself will still come through as it should.

Even though they can look a little frightening at first, there is no treatment required to treat blisters, nor are these blisters preventable. In fact, our bodies do a great job of cleaning up the loose ends of baby tooth loss and permanent tooth emergence, and not too long after, it’s as if no blisters ever happened. It’s important to note, however, that these blisters should not be pricked or cut as doing so may cause an infection in your child’s mouth.

If you are worried about blisters or bruises in your child’s mouth, please give us a call at our convenient Ontario, CA office to schedule an appointment with Dr. Brar. We especially encourage you to give us a call if your child has had one of these blisters for more than a month and the tooth has yet to come through.

Orthodontic Treatment for Children: What You Need to Know

October 8th, 2018

We always want the best for our children, and that includes providing them with a smile that will last them a lifetime. But at what age should your child see an orthodontist, and what would those treatments look like? We see these questions pop up from time to time which is why we’re going to be diving into them today!

First things first, each child is different. This means that there is no definitive answer as to when your child should see an orthodontist. In some cases, we see a child as young as seven start a Phase 1 treatment while at the same time we see children at 12 years of age beginning Invisalign once their adult teeth are fully in. It can be confusing at times, but our team will know when it’s appropriate to start any sort of treatment. Your child is unique, so we create a service that reflects that.

Now, as for the treatments itself, they are broken down into two areas: Phase 1 and Phase 2. Normally done at younger ages, Phase 1 is all about addressing jaw-growth issues or space deficiencies. Spotting any of these early can help with proper growth immensely. Phase 2 focuses on alignment and malocclusions and is typically done at the start of the teen years. Think of Phase 2 as the finishing touches and ensuring that your teeth are as straight as possible.

These treatments can also help solve more problems than just alignment and jaw-growth. Eating or speech issues and even correcting previous habits like thumb sucking. However, we also know that these treatments can difficult for some. We like to focus on the positive by encouraging oral hygiene, congratulating patients on progress, and keeping patients interested in their treatment. With a little help and support, we find many patients are able to persevere throughout their orthodontic treatment with ease!

If you ever have questions or would like to know more about our treatments, feel free to give us a call or give our office a visit. We’d love to see you!

Orthodontics for Teens

October 4th, 2018

It’s never too early to set up your child with a beautiful smile! At Nepean Family Dental, our goal is to give your teen a forever smile they can be proud of.

Dr. Inderpreet Brar is a proud certified provider of Invisalign® clear aligners, which give you a clear, convenient, and comfortable orthodontic option. Gone are the days where wires and brackets were the only way to straighten teeth. With Invisalign, no one will even know you’re going through treatment because the aligners are virtually invisible.

After your initial consultation with Dr. Brar and the team, we will determine if Invisalign is right for your teen. If it is, then a series of Invisalign’s proprietary SmartTrack® material trays are created which are meant to be used over a period of months. The trays are worn for a minimum of 22 hours a day and are only removed when eating or brushing and flossing.

We highly recommend that trays are worn as much as possible during treatment and for best results, we recommend brushing and flossing after each time you remove the Invisalign trays. It’s also important to try to opt for whatever when possible as the trays can pick up pigments from other drinks very easily.

If your teen is ready to explore Invisalign treatment options, be sure to give our office a call to schedule your consultation!

odsCanadian Dental Associationodainvisalign