Please wait...



Keep Your Teeth Healthy

DENTAL BLOG

AdobeStock_94210146.jpeg

If there were a quick and painless way to identify pre-cancerous cells in the mouth of someone you loved, would you want them to try it? What if that person were you? The truth is, as uncomfortable as it may be to even think of the word “cancer,” thinking about it, and thus detecting it early, is key. That’s why, if you haven’t been to the dentist in a while, you should schedule a visit, because while the oral exam that accompanies your cleaning may not be noticeable to you, it’s often your earliest line of defense in the detection of oral cancer.

Lets take a quick look at a few of the risk factors and symptoms, and consider a few options you may have to help reduce risk. Keep in mind that no list is exhaustive, and to always share with each of your health care providers your concerns and strategies regarding your oral health.

Those at Risk for Oral Cancer

Passing certain age thresholds and engaging in certain lifestyle habits can place you at increased risk for oral cancer. For example, men tend to have higher rates of oral cancers than women.

Here is the short list:

  • Patients age 40 and older (95% of all oral cancer cases)
  • Patients age 18-39 who use tobacco, are heavy drinkers, or may have a previously diagnosed oral HPV infection

Warning Signs

If you experience any of the below symptoms lasting more than 7-10 days, please seek the advice of your doctor. Also, keep in mind that aside from an obviously sore throat, the below symptoms can present themselves in the absence of pain. Look out for changes that can be detected on the lips, inside the cheeks, palate, and gum tissue surrounding your teeth and tongue. At Weddington Family Dentistry, we do run across such concerns a few times a year, and are able to recognize warning signs in our patients to help them get treatment early because they are keeping up with regular dental visits.

Here are a few signs you may able to recognize yourself:

  • Reddish or whitish patches in the mouth
  • A sore that fails to heal and bleeds easily
  • A lump or thickening on the skin lining the inside of the mouth
  • Chronic sore throat or hoarseness
  • Difficulty chewing or swallowing

Reducing Risk

If you do not visit the dentist regularly, you could be missing out on the benefits of early cancer detection. Currently, just over half of all those diagnosed with oral cancer survive more than five years – a statistic driven by late diagnosis – so please visit your dentist and get an oral exam at least once a year. If you are considered “high risk,” (see list above) you should be receiving an oral exam at least every six months, if not more frequently.

Below is a short list of healthy habits you can start doing now, which may reduce your risk.

  • Avoid all tobacco products
  • Avoid or reduce your consumption of alcohol
  • Consume more fruits and vegetables (good for everything, of course)
  • Avoid excessive sun exposure that can result in cancer of the lip (using lip balm with an SPF of at least 30 can be helpful) Avoid exposure to environmental hazards (wood dust, formaldehyde, printing chemicals)

Conduct a self-exam monthly so you can catch any of the symptoms listed above. Use a small hand-held mirror so you can see the back of your mouth and tongue Dr. Graichen is a great person to ask for instructions on this sort of home exam. If you haven’t been in for an appointment with us in a while, give us a ring at 704-782-2630, and we can help explain how to perform this exam in between visits. Click HERE to schedule your next appointment in just seconds!



Do you know what type of healthy snacks to get that will help your teeth and body? Here at Weddington Dentistry in Concord, North Carolina, we want to make sure you know the kinds of healthy snacks that’s good for your teeth. Here are a few different types of healthy snacks you can eat that are good for your teeth and body.

List of Healthy Snacks

  • Any kind of cheese is a healthy snack. If you like to eat cheese it will not hurt your teeth in any way. When you eat cheese the pH levels in your mouth will be raised and that helps lower the risk of tooth decay. Cheese also helps build up saliva. Cheese also has calcium and protein in it and that will make your enamel stronger.
  • Yogurt, just like cheese yogurt contains high levels of calcium and protein, which will make your teeth stronger and healthy. Plus, Yogurt has probiotics that your gums benefit from and it also has the good type of bacteria that helps drive the bad cavity causing bacteria out of your mouth. Yogurt that is plain and doesn’t have any added sugar would be considered as a healthy snack.
  • Greens that are leafy. This is another healthy snack that contains a lot of vitamins and minerals that is good for your teeth and your body. Greens like, kale or spinach can promote good oral health. Kale and spinach are full of calcium and that build up your enamel on your teeth, they also have folic acid, which is a type of B vitamin that has tons of healthy benefits that can treat gum disease. You can use kale and spinach in salads or you can mix them up into a smoothie for a great healthy snack.
  • Carrots are a great healthy snack for your teeth. They increase your saliva production, and also decrease the risk of cavities. Carrots contain a high amount of fiber, which is good for your body, and it also contains vitamin A.

There Is More to a Healthy Mouth Than Just Eating Healthy Snacks

This is just a small list for healthy snacks to keep around the house and it’s always best to try and eat healthy cause not only is it good for your body its good for your teeth. If you have any questions or concerns about anything don’t hesitate to call us or stop by for a visit.  Here at Weddington Dentistry in Concord, North Carolina, we take pride in our work and strive to give you the best care possible.



There are many benefits of having white teeth. From being able to make that dynamic first impression to feeling more confident, a set of perfectly pearly whites can do wonders for just about anyone. However, not everyone has a set of shining white teeth. That's where teeth whitening comes in. Visiting a reputable teeth whitening dentist can help set you and your family on the path to obtaining the bright white smile you have always dreamed of. Here is how teeth whitening can benefit you and your family.


Weddington Family Dentistry

We are honored that you have chosen Weddington Family Dentistry and we appreciate the trust you have placed in us.

We are committed to being your partner in good oral health. We believe in establishing a long term relationship so we can get to know your unique needs and design a customized treatment program that will help you maintain a beautiful, healthy smile for life.

© Weddington Family Dentistry 2017.