Jan 31st, 2014
Cold sores are unattractive and painful, but there are some viable prescription and over-the-counter remedies to help expedite the healing process. In his blog, Dr. Robert G. Tupac, D.D.S., F.A.C.P., suggests using antiviral medications if the cold sore is caught early or if you are prone to them. These medications include acyclovir (Zovirax), famciclovir (Famvir), and valacyclovir (Valtrex) and can be prescribed by your dentist.
Lidocaine and benzocaine (commonly known as Zilactin) are topical ointments that can be purchased at your local drugstore without a prescription. Never use more than the recommended dosage or on children younger than age two without doctor’s direction.
Over-the-counter pain relievers such as aspirin, Tylenol, or Advil help alleviate pain and discomfort. If you choose not to take any type of oral medications, placing ice or a warm compress on the blister may offer some relief. Dr. Tupac stresses that the most important thing to remember about treating cold sores is to let them heal and not squeeze, pinch, or pick at any sore.
If you have a cold sore that will not heal or is causing you significant discomfort, seek treatment from a dental expert immediately.
Jan 23rd, 2014
It is quite common for dentists to hear that their patients do not floss very often but they do use mouthwash. Although mouthwash is great, it does not provide the same purposes as flossing or brushing. Mouthwash is just one of the tools that can be used to reduce your risk of gum disease. It is important to know what mouthwash actually does and doesn’t do for your oral hygiene.
Mouthwash is ideal to rinse away food particles that are missed by brushing and flossing. It can also assist in the fight against cavity causing bacteria and can freshen your breath. When selecting a mouthwash, make sure it is ADA approved. It is best to use mouthwash at least once per day but can also be used after each time you brush. Children can benefit from the use of mouthwash but be cautious when selecting a type that is age appropriate.
There are many benefits of mouthwash but it also doesn’t do everything necessary to keep a healthy mouth. Mouthwash does not remove food particles that are wedged between teeth and will not properly clean the surface of your teeth. It is important that you brush twice daily, floss at least one a day, and use mouthwash for an overall healthy mouth.