Why Do I Have White Spots On Teeth?

Causes and Treatments for White Spots

There is no serious medical concern involve when there are white spots appearing on teeth. When you see them they can bother you in a sense you don’t know where they come from and what they portend. So let us look at some of the causes of white spots on teeth and what we can do.

You may have dental fluorosis. This is usually observed in people, who when younger as children, had too much fluoride use. It may be caused by fluoride treatments and high use of fluoride toothpaste, and may or may not be coupled with a highly fluoridated water system. The condition is found in a child’s permanent teeth before their eruption, or during the first eight years of life. It is irreversible.

Another is enamel hypoplasia. Just like in fluorosis, it happens while the permanent teeth is still forming. It is caused by improper development of the teeth enamel, and later in life will make one highly prone to tooth decay and cavities.

Poor dental hygiene is another, especially on those wearing braces. Also when the diet is high in acidic and sugary foods.


Depending on the cause, there are several treatments that can be offered. Your dentist may go for enamel microabrasion, a procedure that uses some acidic and abrasive chemicals and a micromotor to remove the white spots. This is usually followed by bleaching that makes the resultant teeth color more uniform in appearance.

In-office teeth whitening can be done to reduce the obvious appearance of white spots and other stains. These use stronger bleaching formulas that work faster and safer than if over-the-counter kits bought at drugstores or supermarkets.

You can opt for dental veneers, a more costly option yet may be indicated if the white spots are more pronounced. Sometimes called porcelain veneers, they are wafer-thin, custom-made shells of tooth-colored materials that are bonded to the front of the teeth that have white spots, brown stains, or are otherwise chipped or damaged. Veneers can change the color, shape, size, or length of teeth if need be.

Solutions For Spots in Bellevue

If you see white spots and it concerns you, come in for a consultation at Overlake Dental in Bellevue by Dr. Lee. Our friendly staff and dental experts will assist you with blemishes, stains or white spots on teeth.

Bad Breath Foods: What To Avoid and What To Enjoy

Good and Bad Foods For Your Breath

Good oral care routine can help your breath smell fresh and clean. However, if your diet is full of strongly scented foods, you can expect to carry in your mouth, clinging to your teeth, gums, and your tongue, the aromas of these foods. If you don’t carry with you at all times your reliable oral hygiene kit, use it whenever possible after a meal, you can end up with a not-so-fresh breath at the end of the day.

Halitosis: Chronic Bad Breath

But if you have chronic bad breath or halitosis, know that there are certain foods out there that can make the condition worse. Onions and garlic are the usual culprits, these food ingredients being high in sulfur contents. It’s the same with spicy foods, like curry and similar hot, exotic dishes.

Fish, like tuna, contain dense proteins which are used as a food source by the anaerobic, sulphur-producing bacteria present already in an odorous mouth. Those whose diets revolve around fish must apply a splash of lemon or vinegar onto the dish before eating as it helps reduce the fishy odor. Other food sources rich in proteins are meat and dairy products like milk and cheese.

Coffee and juices can contribute to halitosis as these beverages are acidic and provide a breeding ground for bacteria. Caffeinated and alcoholic beverages can also cause dry mouth, a condition where saliva flow is hampered. The dry environment allows bacteria to proliferate and survive, and the condition can cause a foul-smelling odor. It is good to always have the mouth hydrated by plain water to keep the odors away.

On the other hand, there are food choices that prevent bad breath. This also means they can mask bad breath if already present. So while these foods can help, the source of halitosis still needs to be addressed.

High fiber foods help prevent bad breath, such as fresh produce like fruits and vegetables. Apples and pears,
oranges, melons, and berries, also celery, carrots, and cucumbers are high in fiber and are abrasive, able to get rid of odour-causing plaque. They have high water content, preventing dry mouth and flushing away bad breath. Eating these foods also promote saliva production in the mouth. Parsley is probably one of the most well-known claims to treat bad breath, perhaps owing to its strong and natural deodorizing flavor.

Fresh produce are also a powerhouse of vitamins and minerals that build strong and healthy teeth and promote the health of gums. Drinking green and black teas, because they contain polyphenols, is said to help eliminate sulphur compounds and reduce oral bacteria.

Consult with Our Bellevue Dentist

Know more about which foods to avoid and which to enjoy more where bad breath is concerned. Better still, have that dental appointment with your Bellevue dentist Dr. Lee, and have halitosis managed and cured.

Practical Tips To Check If You Have Bad Breath

Do You or Do You Not Have Bad Breath?

Bad breath is a fairly common condition than you might like to think. It can befall the best of us and can range from a light scent to a fainting-induced odor. Nonetheless, most of us are not aware. Family or friends can hesitate to inform us, most likely unwilling to offend us. Halitosis or bad breath is a sensitive subject. Whether we have the condition or not, it is best to find out ourselves.

While we all know that certain foods like garlic, onions and fish can produce mouth odor, a good tooth brushing, flossing and a gargle can make it disappear. However, these foods can actually mask real halitosis or make it worse. As it is, it is not easy for us to pick up our own scent. In fact, you can’t smell your own breath by just blowing into your closed hands and try catching the odor. It doesn’t work that way.

Why is that so? The body is designed so that the senses are accustomed to the smell of one’s own breath.
Evolution has helped our noses to be acclimatized to our own scent and yet detect strange odors that are not our own. Since we exhale constantly, we become accustomed to our own smell.

So how else can we tell if we are sporting halitosis?

Unless you ask somebody else’s opinion, you may not know. One such way is to do ‘the cotton test’. Get a piece of cotton gauze and with it wipe the top surface of your tongue. Smell it. A foul odor and a yellowish stain transferred onto it will tell you that you’ve accumulated a high sulphide production level, meaning your breath is bad.

Another way is to lick the back of your hand. Let it dry for 5-10 seconds and then smell it. Or use dental floss by running it between your back teeth. Smell the floss. It may be the level of odor that other people detect in you. Another way is to stick your tongue out as far as possible in front of a mirror. Observe the furthest part of your tongue. Is it whitish? It’s a sign of bad breath.

A visit to your dentist can really identify the cause of your halitosis. If it’s a chronic condition your dentist can give you a professional diagnosis and prescribe the appropriate treatment depending on the source.

Help with Halitosis in Bellevue

If you have taken us up on our detection tips for bad breath and conclude you may have bad breath, or perhaps you are still unsure, do come for a consultation. Overlake Dental in Bellevue see cases like this and can very well lend professional advice and treatment.

Receding Gums: How Do You Tell?

Understanding Why Gums Recede

Our gums are the often overlooked structures in our mouth as we really put more emphasis in the care of our pearly whites. We regard our perfectly white and aligned teeth as signs of health. Then one day we noticed some teeth looking quite different, like they have elongated. It’s not your teeth that’s having issues, it’s your gums. You’re starting to have receding gums.

Your gums are soft but firm tissues that surround each tooth and keep them in place in their bony arches. They hug your teeth up to what is called the gum line, that separates much of the crown from the root of the teeth. They are rich in nerve and blood supply, and carry that pinkish color if healthy. Now, if they start to recede, you’ll notice that they are somewhat pulled back, exposing more teeth, thus, appearing longer.

Apart from that, how do you know your gums are receding? Receding gums are most likely accompanied with thin gum tissue, and one of the first symptoms is sensitivity during brushing or taking cold drinks, or there may be bleeding while brushing, flossing, or biting on hard food. Other symptoms are red, swollen, or tender gums or other pain in your mouth, or teeth that might be loose or separating. You might notice pus between your teeth and gums, or a sore, a foul odor. And when you bite, your teeth might not be occluding well as before. If you are wearing partial dentures, they don’t seem to fit well anymore.

What might be causing receding gums?

For one, you might be brushing too hard; hard brushing doesn’t mean you’re cleaning your teeth better. Just look at your brush and you might notice the bristles are already frayed, and it’s not even an old toothbrush. Brushing hard can hurt your gums and shrink the gum line. Another is teeth grinding. You might not be aware that you’re tooth grinding while asleep and that may cause undue pressure on tooth surfaces, ligaments and gum tissue as well.

Gum disease is another cause of receding gums, and it might be the foremost cause. Periodontal disease, if untreated, can cause the gums and supporting bone structure to deteriorate. This can lead to gum recession or even tooth loss. You might want to know that gum disease can run in families.

Treating Receding Gums? Visit Overlake Dental in Bellevue

If you see these symptoms, come see your Bellevue dentist right away. Don’t delay for these issues are treatable. Save the health of your teeth and gums by regularly dental visitations.

New Study: Red Wine May be Beneficial to Oral Health?

What’s in red wine that might have oral health benefits?

Lovers of red wine do not only enjoy the velvety taste and lingering aroma of this famous beverage but many are well aware about its cardiovascular benefits. Certainly when drinking in moderation, red wine is a beneficial companion together with a balance diet. Other studies have extolled the health benefits of the drink, including, prevention of dementia, diabetes and certain types of cancer.

Now a new study out of Spain, from the Instituto de Investigación en Ciencias de la Alimentación in Madrid, and the Department of Health and Genomics at the Center for Advanced Research in Public Health in Valencia, is saying that drinking red wine is also beneficial to oral health. But isn’t red wine one of the culprits in teeth staining? It’s a well-documented disadvantage to oral health. However, the study revealed that there is another merit of red wine where oral health is concerned – some of its components may protect against the formation of cavities and against gum disease.

The researchers hypothesized that polyphenols found in red wine and grapes could have a protective effect in the mouth, fending off harmful oral bacteria that cause cavities and gum disease. Polyphenols are micronutrients with antioxidant properties which can protect against the action of free radicals.

The study first compared the effect of two types of polyphenol typically found in red wine (caffeic acid and p-coumaric acid) as well as that of red wine and grape seed extracts (Provinols and Vitaflavan) on three harmful oral bacteria: Fusobacterium nucleatum, Streptococcus mutans, and Porphyromonas gingivalis.

Using a laboratory model of gum tissue, it was found that the two red wine polyphenols were most effective at keeping harmful oral bacteria and preventing them from attaching to healthy tissue. Then a mix of the polyphenols and an oral probiotic named Streptococcus dentisani, which may help to prevent tooth decay. It proved to be more successful as the protective effect of the two polyphenols was enhanced by the presence of the probiotic.

So now there’s scientific basis to love more your red wine. The polyphenols in red wine can help prevent cavity formation and gum disease. And where red wine can stain teeth, just be sure to have a mouthwash or a teeth-brushing after enjoying a night of wine. One must not ignore that wine is an alcoholic beverage, though, and overdrinking have problems of its own.

Drinking Moderately is Key

Do enjoy your red wine, its health and now, its oral benefits. Moderation is key in order to reap its advantages. However, do mind regular dental visits which, by themselves, are essential to oral health. Always consult with your doctor and dentist first.