Posts for: June, 2015

By Newmarket Dentistry
June 16, 2015
Category: Oral Health

For major-league slugger Giancarlo Stanton, 2014 was a record-breaking year. After the baseball season ended, he signed a 13-year, $325 million contract with the Miami Marlins — the biggest deal in sports history. But earlier that same year, Stanton suffered one of the worst accidents in baseball: He was hit in the face by an 88-mph fastball, sustaining multiple fractures, lacerations, and extensive dental damage.

After the accident, Stanton didn’t play for the remainder of the season. But now he’s back in Spring Training… and he’s got a not-so-secret weapon to help protect him against another injury: A custom-made face guard designed to absorb impacts and keep him from suffering further trauma.

As sports fans, we’re glad that Stanton was able to overcome his injury and get back in the game. As dentists, we’d like to remind you that you don’t have to be a major-league player to feel the harmful effects of a sports injury — and you don’t have to look far to find a way to protect yourself. In fact, you can get a custom-made mouthguard right here at the dental office.

Mouthguards have a long tradition in sports like football, boxing, and hockey. But did you know that far more Americans are injured every year playing “non-collision” sports like basketball, baseball — and even bicycling? And it doesn’t take a major-league fastball to cause a dental injury: The highest incidence of sports-related dental injuries occurs in 15-to-18-year-old males. In fact, about one-third of all dental injuries among children stem from various types of sports activities. These injuries may result in countless hours being lost from school and work, and cost significant sums for treatment and restoration.

Mouthguards have a proven track record in reducing dental and facial injuries: They are capable of absorbing the energy of a blow to the mouth, and dissipating it in a way that prevents damage to facial structures and teeth. But not all mouthguards are created equal: Custom-fabricated mouthguards, which are produced from an exact model of your mouth made right here in the dental office, offer by far the best protection. They fit better and safeguard the teeth more fully than any off-the-shelf or “boil-and-bite” type can. Plus, they’re more comfortable to wear. And let’s face it: No mouth guard can protect your teeth if you don’t wear it.

What’s more, some recent studies indicate that custom-made mouthguards may offer significant protection against concussion. An increasing awareness of the dangers that concussion may pose to athletes is one more reason why we recommend custom-made mouthguards to active people and their families.

To get his face guard, Giancarlo Stanton reportedly went to a specialist sporting-goods manufacturer in Illinois, and paid around $1,000. But you can get a custom-made mouthguard for yourself or your loved ones right at our office for a fraction of that price. And the peace of mind it can give you is… priceless.

If you have questions about custom-made mouthguards, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can learn more by reading the Dear Doctor magazine articles “An Introduction to Sports Injuries & Dentistry” and “Athletic Mouthguards.”

By Newmarket Dentistry
June 03, 2015
Category: Oral Health
Tags: Headaches  

"Oh, my aching head." More people than you may realize utter that complaint. In fact, the American Academy of Craniofacial Pain states that 40 percent of healthy adults have recurring headaches. This pain debilitates some sufferers, as in the case of migraines, but other individuals suffer in silence.Headache

Physicians and dentists recommend some common sense strategies to prevent headaches before they start. As routine lifestyle changes, these easy tips could relieve the aching pain behind the eyes and the sore neck, jaw and shoulder muscles characteristic of so many headaches.

1. Get regular sleep. Eight hours a night calms and refreshes, easing muscle tension. To ensure falling and staying asleep, establish a good bedtime routine. In the hour before bedtime, turn off the TV, tablet and cell phone, and dim the lights. These things encourage your body and brain to settle down. In addition, resist the temptation to nap during the day.

2. Exercise regularly. A University of Gothenberg study reports that 40 minutes of moderately strenuous activity daily raises the happy and relaxed brain chemicals called endorphins, enabling a person to drift off to sleep each night. Regular physical activity also fights off the "weekend warrior" syndrome in which people exercise too hard too infrequently and then report - guess what - headaches.

3. Find ways to reduce stress. Chronic stress tightens muscles all over the body, but especially from the shoulders up. Physicians recommend people practice slow, deliberate breathing to increase levels of oxygen and to release endorphins. Learn to relax muscles by tensing some of them. While this seems counterintuitive, it works over time.

For instance, while sitting at your desk during the day, clench your fists, hold for a few seconds and release. It's as simple as that. Also, you may be clenching your jaw or tightening your shoulders unconsciously several times during the work day. So, be aware of your body, and relax those tense muscles.

4. See your Newmarket, Ontario dentist for a bite check-up. When a bite does not line-up properly, undue physical forces push up and down on teeth during chewing and during moments of stress. Grinding tightens jaw and neck muscles, leading to headaches.

Dr. Richard Lee-Shanok at Newmarket Dentistry will examine your teeth and jaw bone and the tempormandibular joint as well, a common cause of sore facial muscles and odd popping and clicking noises. People with TMJ dysfunction may benefit from custom-made night time mouth guards which seem to prevent painful teeth grinding and headaches.

In addition, Dr. Lee-Shanok examines teeth for decay or failing restorations which lead to headaches. X-rays and other imaging may reveal hidden dental problems or issues that require orthodontic treatment.

Newmarket Dentistry Wants You Healthy

Would you like to learn more about how to prevent headaches? Book a consultation with Dr. Lee-Shanok. This experienced family dentist and his friendly staff will listen to your concerns and help you get to the cause of your headaches. Call today: (905) 830-1010.


In your search for the right toothpaste, you’re inundated with dozens of choices, each promising whiter teeth, fresher breath or fewer cavities. Cutting through the various marketing claims, though, you’ll find most toothpaste brands are surprisingly alike, each containing the same basic ingredients. Taken together, these ingredients help toothpaste perform its primary task — removing daily bacterial plaque from tooth surfaces.

Here, then, are some of the ingredients you’ll find — or want to find — in toothpaste.

Abrasives. A mild abrasive increases your brushing effectiveness removing sticky food remnants from teeth. And unlike the burnt, crushed eggshells of the ancient Egyptians or the brick dust used by 18th Century Brits, today’s toothpaste abrasives — hydrated silica (from sand), calcium carbonate or dicalcium phosphates — are much milder and friendlier to teeth.

Detergents. Some substances in plaque aren’t soluble, meaning they won’t break down in contact with water. Such substances require a detergent, also known as a surfactant. It performs a similar action as dishwashing or laundry soaps breaking down grease and stains — but the detergents used in toothpaste are much milder so as not to damage teeth or irritate gum tissues. The most common detergent, sodium lauryl sulfate, is gentle but effective for most people. If it does cause you irritation, however, you may want to look for a paste that doesn’t contain it.

Fluoride. This proven enamel strengthener has been routinely added to toothpaste since the 1950s, and is regarded as one of the most important defenses against tooth decay. If you’re checking ingredients labels, you’ll usually find it listed as sodium fluoride, stannous fluoride or sodium monofluorosphosphate (MFP). And since it inhibits bacterial growth, fluoride toothpastes don’t require preservative additives.

Humectants, binders and flavoring. Humectants help toothpaste retain moisture, while binders prevent blended ingredients from separating; without them your toothpaste would dry out quickly and require stirring before each use. And, without that sweet (though without added sugar) and normally mint flavoring, you wouldn’t find the average toothpaste very tasty.

The ADA Seal of Approval. Although not an ingredient, it’s still sound advice to look for it on toothpaste packaging. The seal indicates the product’s health claims and benefits are supported by the research standards set by the American Dental Society; and all ADA approved toothpastes will contain fluoride.

If you would like more information on toothpaste and other oral hygiene products, 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 “Toothpaste: What’s in it?



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