Q: I have braces. Are there foods that I should avoid?
A: There are certain foods that people with braces should generally avoid to lower their risk of cavities and help preserve their braces.

Hard and crunchy foods like popcorn and nuts can damage your braces, and hard foods like carrots should be cut into smaller bites. Sugary and starchy foods lead to plaque, which promotes gum disease and cavities. Try to avoid foods that are sticky because they can loosen brackets and damage the wires of your braces.
This page features a good list of foods to avoid while you have braces. If you want to learn more about how to protect your braces, visit our office and we’ll be glad to discuss it with you.

Dr. Natalie Khadavi sees patients in the Los Angeles area. Visit our website or give us a call at (310) 482-3971 for more information about how we can provide you and your family with healthy smiles that last a lifetime.

Q: I need to have a tooth removed soon, and I’ve heard I need to watch out for a dry socket. How do I know if I have one?

A: Sometimes, after a tooth extraction, the remaining socket develops problems and is slow to heal. This is alveolar osteitis, also known as a dry socket. Fortunately dry sockets are fairly uncommon, but you’re at increased risk for getting one if you smoke, you’re taking oral contraceptives or you don’t follow your dentist’s directions for post-extraction care. Wisdom teeth are the most frequent site.

Dry socket problems normally begin two or more days after an extraction, and they can be quite painful. Symptoms of dry socket can include pain that sometimes radiates to your ear, bad breath, or a bad smell or taste in your mouth. Your dentist will help relieve the pain by cleaning the dry socket and placing a medicated dressing in it. In some cases the dentist will need to change the dressing every day, until the socket heals. You can take a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug, such as ibuprofen.

Dr. Natalie Khadavi sees patients in the Los Angeles area. Visit our website or give us a call at (310) 482-3971 for more information about how we can provide you and your family with healthy smiles that last a lifetime.

Can fillings pick up radio signals?

Q: Is it really possible to hear radio signals through your fillings?

A: We’ve all heard stories about it, and it’s been a popular sitcom plot for decades. (I Love Lucy star Lucille Ball even claimed that it happened to her.) But as far as anybody has been able to prove, it doesn’t really happen.

The popular newspaper column The Straight Dope looked into this years ago, and found no evidence that it’s true. More recently the Discovery Channel show Mythbusters looked into it, and after they conducted their tests they declared the myth busted. So don’t worry, you can get a filling without ending up being stuck listening to the local heavy metal station all day long!

Dr. Natalie Khadavi sees patients in the Los Angeles area. Visit our website or give us a call at (310) 482-3971 for more information about how we can provide you and your family with healthy smiles that last a lifetime.

Q: What should I do after I’ve bitten my tongue?A: If it’s a bad bite, you should immediately get it looked at by a doctor or dentist. If it’s only a minor bite, you can give it time and it will probably heal well on its own. A lot of tongue injuries heal quickly.

To treat a tongue bite yourself, you should begin by sucking on an ice cube for a few minutes. Then you should press a clean gauze or warm washcloth onto the bleeding area, until the bleeding stops. (If the bleeding won’t stop after 15 minutes, seek medical attention!) Then rinse with a glass of warm saltwater or a mix of one part hydrogen peroxide to two parts water, and spit.

If you’re in some relatively minor pain you can take an over the counter pain reliever, but if the pain is bad, see a health professional. While your tongue is healing, avoid acidic or crunchy foods, and chew carefully.

Dr. Natalie Khadavi sees patients in the Los Angeles area. Visit our website or give us a call at (310) 482-3971 for more information about how we can provide you and your family with healthy smiles that last a lifetime.

Q: Are diet sodas as bad for your teeth as regular sodas?A: A diet, sugarless soda isn’t nearly as bad for your teeth as a regular, sugary soda, but diet soda is still acidic and over time it can do a lot of damage to your teeth. Diet colas and other dark drinks can also stain your teeth.
Remember that not all “diet” drinks are actually sugar free, so always read the label so you’ll know exactly what you’re drinking. And whenever you drink a diet soda, be sure to rinse your mouth out immediately afterward to help prevent damage and discoloration.

Dr. Natalie Khadavi sees patients in the Los Angeles area. Visit our website or give us a call at (310) 482-3971 for more information about how we can provide you and your family with healthy smiles that last a lifetime.

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