Dr Marcy Schwartzman Dr Lori Durward Dr Noa Albanese
  • Blog

    Easy Ways To Improve Your Dental Health

    WE’VE ALL HEARD that if we want healthy teeth, we should brush twice a day, floss once a day, and schedule regular dental cleaning appointments twice a year. Definitely keep doing those things, but if you want to step up your oral health game, here are a few easy ways to do that.

    Replace Your Toothbrush Regularly

    One of the simplest ways you can improve your dental health and hygiene is to replace your toothbrush on a regular basis. Vigorous brushing will make the bristles fray and reduce the brush’s cleaning ability, but that’s not the only reason toothbrushes should be replaced often.

    A lot of the bacteria we brush off our teeth stays on the bristles of our toothbrushes. Proper storage–meaning storing the toothbrush upright and letting it dry out between uses–can keep a toothbrush from getting smelly and nasty too fast, but it’s still important to replace your toothbrush at least every 3-4 months.

    Use A Tongue-Scraper

    Brushing your teeth twice daily is a no-brainer, but don’t forget your tongue! The same bacteria and gunk that flourishes on teeth can hide on your tongue too. Using a tongue scraper or just running your toothbrush over your tongue will leave your mouth feeling much fresher than if you only focus on your teeth and gums.

    Don’t Brush Too Hard

    Sometimes it seems like we need to really work at those teeth when we brush, to get absolutely all of the food particles and plaque out. However, if we brush too hard, we risk scraping away at the tooth enamel, which is your teeth’s first line of defense against decay. Brush gently or use a toothbrush with soft bristles to avoid damaging your teeth.

    Eat Teeth-Friendly Foods

    Many foods are bad for your teeth. Sugar and carbs feed the harmful bacteria living in your mouth and acidic drinks erode tooth enamel. Avoiding some of these foods will help, but there are also plenty of foods you can eat that are actually good for your teeth.

    Adding more cheese, yogurt, leafy greens, apples, carrots, celery, and almonds to your diet will make your teeth happy, whether by scrubbing them as you eat, fighting bad bacteria, treating gum disease, neutralizing your mouth’s pH, or remineralizing your enamel.

    We’d Love To See How Your Teeth Are Doing!

    If it’s been a while since your last dental exam, we’d love to see how your teeth are doing, and we’ll be excited to see how adopting these simple habits will affect your oral health by the time we see you again!

    We Love Our Patients!

    The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.


    Smile-Friendly After School Snacks

    AS MANY PARENTS KNOW when your child comes home from school, they often run straight for the kitchen.

    We understand that kids can be a bit hungry after a long day in the classroom, we want to help you provide some ideas for snacks that won’t only fill their bellies when they go back to school in September, but will benefit their smile as well!

    Try These Smile-Friendly Snacks

    Consuming a lot of starchy and sugary treats in the afternoon can do a number on a child’s teeth—not to mention ruin their appetite for dinner. Sticky, sugary snacks can adhere to your child’s teeth for long periods of time, potentially causing harmful cavities. In order to avoid snack-induced cavities and other oral health concerns, try these ideas instead:

    Leafy Greens and Fresh Veggies

    Dark, leafy greens like kale, spinach, and collard greens have calcium, vitamin A, vitamin B2, and magnesium–all essential for healthy teeth and gums. Veggies like broccoli and celery are great too! In addition to being rich in vitamins, broccoli has been shown to create an acid-resistant teeth “shield.” As for celery, because of its fibrous material, it massages gums, cleans teeth, and encourages saliva production—making it a natural tooth scrubber!

    If your kids like a little crunch in their snack, you could even try making homemade veggie chips! You can use anything from kale and spinach to sweet potatoes and carrots. Simply mix your veggies with enough olive oil to coat them, add any spices you’d like (garlic or pepper is always good!), and bake at 350 degrees for 12 minutes, flip your veggies, and then bake until crispy!

    Cheese, Milk, and Yogurt

    Dairy is the go-to dental snack for a reason! Few other foods give such a great boost of calcium. Cheese and yogurt even help cut acidity, helping protect your child’s teeth from erosion caused by acidic fruit juices.

    If your child doesn’t just want plain yogurt, fruit and yogurt parfaits are a great option to add some flavor and healthy vitamins to their snack.

    Fruit High in Vitamin C

    A lack of vitamin C can break down the collagen network in our gums, making them tender and more susceptible to bacteria and gum disease. Citrus fruits such as oranges, grapefruit and kiwi are great sources of Vitamin C.

    To make their citrus snack fun, you can make fun kabobs with some citrus, berries, and some of their favorite cheeses.

    Do You Have Anything To Add?

    Do you have any healthy snack recipes of your own? We’d love to hear them! Feel free to share in the comments below or on our Facebook page.

    Thank you for your trust in our practice!

    The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.


    Preparing For Your Child’s First Dental Visit

    SEEING A BABY’S FIRST SMILE is a wonderful moment in a new parent’s life – that little grin leaves a lasting impression! Visiting the dentist early ensures that your child’s smile remains happy and healthy.

    First Tooth Pop In? Time To Schedule Their Appointment!

    The British Columbia Dental Association recommends that children have their first dental appointment by age one or within 6 months of their first tooth appearing. Although this may seem early for a first visit, there are many reasons for acquainting your child with a dentist so early in their oral development.

    The first, and most obvious, is that we are able to monitor the health of their new teeth as they come in. As soon as your little one’s first tooth erupts, he or she can begin to develop cavities. Aside from checking for tooth decay, we check to ensure that their overall oral development is on track and answer any questions you may have about your child’s growing smile.

    What To Expect During Your Child’s First Visit

    As you prepare your child for their first dental visit, you may begin to wonder what you can expect during their appointment. The first dental visit is often very brief and gives your child an opportunity to meet their dentist in a friendly, non-threatening way. This helps get them acquainted and can help calm your child before their dental exam.

    Once your child is ready for their exam, the dentist will:

    • Check their existing teeth for decay
    • Examine their bite and look for any problems with the gums, jaw and oral tissues
    • Clean any teeth present

    These appointments are also an excellent opportunity for us to share information with you about proper oral care as your child’s smile develops. If you have any questions about your child’s oral hygiene routine, this is a perfect time to ask! We’ll be happy to discuss strategies to help soothe your baby during the teething phase, answer questions about oral habits such as thumb sucking, or share tips about a smile-healthy diet.

    After their visit is complete, your dentist will suggest a schedule of follow-up visits based on the unique needs of your child.

    We’ll Make Sure Your Child Leaves With A Smile!

    Whether it’s your child’s first visit or their 50th, we’re committed to giving them an experience that helps pave the way for a lifetime of good oral health. If you have any questions about your child’s first visit in our office, feel free to give us a call! We’d love to talk with you about any specific needs they may have for their first appointment.

    Thank you for being a part of our practice family!

    The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.


    There’s Still Time To Be A Part Of Our Smiles For Life Campaign

    AS MANY OF YOU KNOW, we are proud participants of the 2017 Smiles For Life campaign. Since March we’ve been professionally whitening people’s smiles and donating 100 percent of the proceeds to the Smiles For Life Foundation to benefit seriously ill, disabled, and underprivileged kids—both locally and around the world. You—our valued patients and friends—have been crucial to our efforts and we still need you!

    When June Ends, The Campaign Ends

    If you’ve already participated, we thank you—your contribution is greatly appreciated. If you haven’t, there’s still time (although not much!) for you to make a difference. You have until the end of June to take advantage of this wonderful opportunity. It’s the ultimate “win, win”. We professionally whiten your teeth, you get a dazzling white smile, AND both of us get to help children in need.

    Here’s How It Works:

    At Our Office

    Here at Dr. Schwartzman, Dr. Tabata, and Dr. Durward’s office, we have a goal of raising $10,000 for charity in our 2017 Smiles for Life campaign – and we’re nearly there!

    Here’s How YOU Can Help Kids In Need:

    1. Make a whitening appointment with us to whiten your smile!
    2. Help us spread the word! Whether you choose to have your own smile whitened or not, you can make a HUGE difference for seriously ill and underserved children around the world by simply sharing this opportunity on your trusted social networks such as Facebook!

    Thanks for helping us make a difference in children’s lives!

    The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.


    Ever Wonder How Tooth Whitening Works?

    IT IS NOT UNCOMMON for your teeth to lose their luster over time, which is why so many people are interested in whitening them!

    Until June 30, 2017 we are partnering with the Smiles for Life foundation to give you a great deal on custom made whitening trays, and all of the proceeds go directly to benefiting children’s charities. Read on to learn more about tooth whitening!

    Teeth Get Yellow For A Number Of Reasons

    Teeth becoming yellow over time is as normal as graying hair–it is a natural part of the aging process. As we get older, our tooth enamel begins to thin due to everyday wear and tear. This causes the layer beneath our enamel, called the dentin, to show more, giving our teeth a more yellow appearance.

    There are other factors that can cause teeth to yellow other than aging however, such as:

    • Tobacco use
    • Food and drink
    • Poor dental hygiene
    • Dental trauma
    • Certain medications

    If you want to prevent your teeth from yellowing as best you can, we suggest you change some of your lifestyle habits. If you use tobacco in any form, quit. Consume acidic food and drink in moderation and monitor your intake of beverages that can stain your teeth such as wine, coffee, tea, soda, etc. And as always, brush up on your oral hygiene habits and make sure you’re getting frequent cleanings!

    The Way You Whiten Your Teeth Depends On The Stain

    There are two types of stains that you can have on your teeth. Surface, or “extrinsic” stains, caused by smoking and diet occur on the surface of the enamel. “Intrinsic” stains are deeper, and happen inside the tooth.

    You can remove some of the surface stains on your teeth by using a whitening toothpaste. These kinds of toothpastes usually contain special abrasives that gently polish the teeth as well certain chemicals that can help break down stains. These toothpastes can be tough on tooth enamel, so make sure to always read labels when using them–some should only be used temporarily.

    Intrinsic stains can’t be helped by whitening toothpastes. To get that brighter smile, you’ll need to actually change the color of your teeth. You can do this using a bleaching agent. The bleaching agents most products use are hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide. These chemicals break stains into smaller pieces, making their color less concentrated and leaving your teeth much whiter!

    We Would Love To See You At Our Office

    At our practice, we offer professional whitening services that will get you the white smile you’ve been dreaming of. Whiten your teeth safely and effectively in the comfort of your own home with easy to use custom made trays and professional whitening solution that we provide for you at our office. And until June 30, 2017 all of the proceeds will go directly to benefiting children’s charities through the Smiles for Life foundation – so you can feel good about getting a whiter smile!

    We’d love to see you, whether that’s for a cleaning, checkup, or whitening treatment!

    Have any questions? Call us at 604-266-5313 and we would be happy to answer your questions. Thank you for reading our blog!

    The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.