Posts for: July, 2016

By James Hutson, DDS, PC
July 25, 2016
Category: Oral Health
ActorDavidRamseyDiscussesBabyBottleToothDecay

Cavities can happen even before a baby has his first piece of candy. This was the difficult lesson actor David Ramsey of the TV shows Arrow and Dexter learned when his son DJ’s teeth were first emerging.

“His first teeth came in weak,” Ramsey recalled in a recent interview. “They had brown spots on them and they were brittle.” Those brown spots, he said, quickly turned into cavi­ties. How did this happen?

Ramsey said DJ’s dentist suspected it had to do with the child’s feedings — not what he was being fed but how. DJ was often nursed to sleep, “so there were pools of breast milk that he could go to sleep with in his mouth,” Ramsey explained.

While breastfeeding offers an infant many health benefits, problems can occur when the natural sugars in breast milk are left in contact with teeth for long periods.  Sugar feeds decay-causing oral bacteria, and these bacteria in turn release tooth-eroding acids. The softer teeth of a young child are particularly vulnerable to these acids; the end result can be tooth decay.

This condition, technically known as “early child caries,” is referred to in laymen’s terms as “baby bottle tooth decay.” However, it can result from nighttime feedings by bottle or breast. The best way to prevent this problem is to avoid nursing babies to sleep at night once they reach the teething stage; a bottle-fed baby should not be allowed to fall asleep with anything but water in their bottle or “sippy cup.”

Here are some other basics of infant dental care that every parent should know:

  • Wipe your baby’s newly emerging teeth with a clean, moist washcloth after feedings.
  • Brush teeth that have completely grown in with a soft-bristled, child-size toothbrush and a smear of fluoride toothpaste no bigger than a grain of rice.
  • Start regular dental checkups by the first birthday.

Fortunately, Ramsey reports that his son is doing very well after an extended period of professional dental treatments and parental vigilance.

“It took a number of months, but his teeth are much, much better,” he said. “Right now we’re still helping him and we’re still really on top of the teeth situation.”

If you would like more information on dental care for babies and toddlers, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more by reading the Dear Doctor magazine articles “The Age One Dental Visit” and “Dentistry & Oral Health for Children.”


By James Hutson, DDS, PC
July 17, 2016
Category: Oral Health
Tags: oral health   nutrition  
4DietChangesYouShouldMakeforBetterOralHealth

One of the most popular subjects in books, magazines and social media is food — the things we should or should not eat (or at least not too much). While losing weight is a popular focus, it's only one part of the whole — a balanced diet that supplies the nutrients we need to be healthy.

What you eat can also make a difference in your oral health. Here are 4 changes you should make to your dietary habits to cut down on the risk of dental disease.

Adopt a nutritionally sound diet plan. When we say diet, we're not talking about the latest weight-loss sensation — we mean a planned way of eating for life. For most people, that's a balanced diet of fresh fruits and vegetables, protein and dairy. Your teeth and gums have the best chance of remaining strong and healthy with a nutrient-rich diet.

Manage your sugar intake. Sugar and similar carbohydrates are a rich food source for bacteria that cause dental disease. It's important then that you keep your sugar consumption within limits: don't eat more than six teaspoons of processed sugar a day (or three for a child); avoid sugary snacks between meals; and try to satisfy your sweet tooth with the natural sugars found in fresh fruits and vegetables.

Cut back on acidic beverages. Sodas, juices, sports and energy drinks are all the rage. They're also high in acid, which at chronic levels can soften and erode tooth enamel. So, try to drink them only at meal times and avoid sipping on them over long periods. And, if you're hydrating yourself after moderate work or exercise, try nature's perfect hydrator — water.

Avoid eating before bedtime. A good portion of the acid in our mouths after we eat can be neutralized by saliva. As we sleep, though, our saliva flow slows down and doesn't have the same buffering power as it does during the day. So, try not to eat as least an hour before you turn in for the night, especially foods with added sugar.

If you would like more information on nutrition and oral health, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Nutrition & Oral Health.”


By James Hutson, DDS, PC
July 02, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
NeilPatrickHarrisWhattheOscarsHostTreasuresMost

A few days before the Oscars, Vanity Fair magazine asked Academy Awards host Neil Patrick Harris to name his most treasured possession. Was it his Tony award statuette for best leading actor in a musical? His star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame? The stethoscope he wore while playing teenaged doctor Doogie Howser on TV? No, as it turns out, the 41-year-old actor’s most treasured possession is… his wisdom teeth. Yes, you read that correctly. “Oddly, I still have my four wisdom teeth,” Harris said. “I refuse to let them go or I’ll lose my wise parts.”

How odd is it for a 41-year-old to have wisdom teeth? Actually, not that odd at all. While it is true that wisdom teeth are often removed, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to this. It all depends on whether they are causing problems now, or are likely to cause problems in the future.

The trouble wisdom teeth cause is related to the fact that they are the last molars to come in, and that molars are large in size. By the time wisdom teeth appear between the ages of 17 and 21, there often is not enough room for them in the jaw. Sometimes it’s because you may have inherited a jaw size that’s too small for your tooth size; and generally speaking, the size of the human jaw has evolved to become smaller over time.

If room is lacking, the adjacent molar (that came in earlier) can interfere with the path of eruption — causing the wisdom tooth to come in at an odd angle. The wisdom tooth can hit up against that other tooth, possibly causing pain or damaging the adjacent tooth. This is known as “impaction.” Sometimes the wisdom tooth breaks only partway through the gum tissue, leaving a space beneath the gum line that’s almost impossible to clean, causing infection. A serious oral infection can jeopardize the survival of teeth, and even spread to other parts of the body.

If a wisdom tooth is impacted, will you know it? Not necessarily. A tooth can be impacted without causing pain. But we can see the position of your wisdom teeth on a dental x-ray and help you make an informed decision as to whether they should stay or go. If removal is the best course of action, rest assured that this procedure is completely routine and that your comfort and safety is our highest priority. If there is no great risk to keeping them, as Neil Patrick Harris has done, we can simply continue to monitor their condition at your regular dental checkups. It will be particularly important to make sure you are reaching those teeth with your brush and floss, and that you keep to your schedule of regular professional cleanings at the dental office. All healthy teeth are indeed worth treasuring.

If you would like more information about wisdom teeth, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can learn more by reading the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Wisdom Teeth” and “Removing Wisdom Teeth.”


By James Hutson, DDS, PC
July 01, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: veneers  

Protect your smile investment by knowing how to properly care for your smile.

Cosmetic dentistry is a great way to boost your appearance and give you a smile you can be proud of. But getting cosmetic dentistry veneersrequires time and money, so if you do decide that your smile could benefit from cosmetic dentistry, isn’t it worth it to then protect that investment? Dr. James Hutson, our Marietta, GA cosmetic dentist, offers up some helpful tips for how to keep your new smile looking its best.

Keep Veneers Looking Great

These thin porcelain shells are a brilliant way to transform your smile with just one procedure. Even though veneers are strong and offer lasting results, if you don’t care for them properly you may find yourself with broken or discolored veneers. So how do you care for your dental veneers once you get them?

  • Brush and floss your teeth regularly. When brushing be sure to use a non-abrasive toothpaste (as abrasive ingredients can wear down your veneers)
  • Don’t use your veneers as tools. Your teeth are only meant for speaking and eating. Don’t try to pull open packaging or bite your nails, as this can put added pressure on your veneers and cause them to chip or break.
  • Try to limit the number of stain-producing foods and drinks you incorporate into your diet. Berries, wine, coffee, tea and tomato-based products can even cause dental veneers to stain over time. When you do consume it, try to minimize how much contact your veneers have with your food and use a straw to drink.

Boost Your Dental Implant’s Longevity

One of the major pros of choosing dental implants is that they are designed to last significantly longer than other restorations. In fact, they can easily last a few decades if you treat them well.

  • To care for your implant properly it’s recommended that you brush your teeth three times a day and floss before bed. Each time you brush it should be for at least two minutes.
  • Ask your Marietta dentist about the best toothpaste, mouthwashes and other products that ensure that your mouth stays in tip-top shape.
  • Visit us at least every six months for routine exams and cleanings. The only way to catch a problem before it gets too severe is to come in regularly.

Keep Your Whiter Smile Bright

Similar to dental veneers, there are some useful tips for keeping those newly whitened teeth radiant:

  • Avoid and/or limit stain-producing foods and drinks
  • Opt for whitening toothpastes and at-home kits that can help maintain your brilliant smile
  • Avoid or quit smoking
  • Brush and floss routinely and make sure to really spend time doing both effectively and thoroughly

Is it time to schedule your six-month checkup? If so, then don’t hesitate to call Dr. Hutson in Marietta, GA today to schedule your appointment right away!




Dentist - Marietta
707 Whitlock Ave. SW,
Suite B22 Marietta, GA 30064
(770) 424-7525

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