Digital X-ray Radiation Exposure Fact Sheet

Published on May 29, 2014 by

images digital dental

  • A dental x-ray is a useful diagnostic tool used to help detect damage and disease not visible during a regular dental exam.
  • Radiation exposure is measured in mREM, the adverage person in the US is exposed to about 360mREM per year just from naturally occuring background sources. Background radiation comes from outer space, the earth, natural materials and even other people.
  • 5,000mREM is the federal total effective, whole body, yearly occupational dose limit.
  • The average digital dental x-rays delievers about 0.3mREM. Therefore, a full mouth set of x-rays delievers about 5.4mREM. Depending on you oral health, full mouth set of x-rays are taken every five to seven years.
  • A panoramic x-rays delivers about 2mREM.


  • Flying cross country exposes a person to about 3-5mREM.
  • Cooking with natural gas exsposures us to an additional 10mREM per year.
  • Living in a brick building adds an additional 10mREM per year compared to a wooden structure.
  • Simply sleeping next to another person exsoses you to an extra 2mREM per year.
  • To equal the amount of radiation the average citizen picks up from naturally occuring background sources each year, the dentist would have to take 950 digital x-rays.

How to Clean Your Toothbrush Naturally

Published on May 7, 2014 by

toothbrushMost people take the time weekly to clean their home to keep germs and nasties at bay. But how often have you thought about that tiny brush sitting in your bathroom? I mean, we use it daily to clean our teeth. And still, we use the same brush over and over with out a thought.

Did you know that every time you flush the toilet, your toothbrush is sprayed with bacteria. Appetizing. Microorganisms are ejected when you flush and land all over the bathroom. I am thinking we should all be keeping our toothbrush as far away from the toilet as possible, or hide it in the medicine cabinet or clean it. Keeping your toilet lid closed when flushing will reduce your toothbrush from bring sprayed!

With all that said, we should be taking the time to clean our toothbrush weekly, since there is a great possiblity that they are harboring germs and bacteria that we dont want in our mouth to begin with while brushing. How to clean your toothbrush naturally, you ask? It is quite simple and you will be scratching your head as to why you haven’t been doing this before today.

Cleaning your toothbrush


  • 1/4 cup peroxide
  • 1 drop Thieves essential oil
  • Glass cup


  1. Place your toothbrushes upside down in a glass cup
  2. Pour enough peroxide over the toothbrush bristles to cover them
  3. Add 1 drop of Thieves oil
  4. Stir the mixture gently with the toothbrushes
  5. Let sit for 10 minutes or longer

Notes and Tips

Try lemon oil, if you do not have Thieves oil

Christa Our Newest Employee

Published on April 2, 2014 by

PART_1394917085996_IMG_0317.jpg We’d Like To Introduce Our Newest Member!!

Christa was born and raised in WNC. Christa graduated from the dental assisting program in 2005 at AB- Tech. She enjoys experiencing all the different restaurants Asheville has to offer with her husband of five years, Van. She also spends most of her time chasing her energetic 2 ½ year old daughter, Hannah.

Ways to Naturally Whiten your Teeth

Published by


Ways to naturally whiten your teeth


Nobody likes yellowing teeth, or the expensive dental bills that come with a brilliant new smile.  The sad truth is some people no matter how many times they brush their teeth have stained teeth from drinking coffee, tea, and smoking. First impressions matter in this world and having teeth that look like you don’t brush can and will send a signal that you don’t really care about yourself. Who doesn’t want to have a beautiful smile with sparkling teeth? The good news is here are a few secrets to naturally whiten your teeth.


  1. Brush after drinking or eating

The best way, but not always the easiest, is to simply brush your teeth after eating or drinking something. If this isn’t an option for you then you should rinse your mouth after drinking discoloring drinks such as coffee and after eating discoloring foods such as tomato sauce.


  1. Coconut Oil Pulling

Can it be true? Coconut oil to clean teeth? Just when you thought you heard it all when it comes to coconut oil, it comes to the rescue as a teeth whitener. Some people are attesting to their teeth becoming whiter by applying coconut oil to their teeth after they brush. But for most people, they are praising the results of oil pulling. Simply put a spoonful of coconut oil in your mouth and swish it between your teeth for 5 to 20 minutes. Another option is to add a few drops to your toothbrush or a corner of a clean wash cloth and brush/ rub it on. Also, coconut oil has antimicrobial properties so it’s great for your gums.


  1. Apple Cider Vinegar (AVC)

It makes sense that apple cider vinegar would eventually remove stubborn stains on the teeth, especially from coffee and nicotine. It has been proven that it does work but you have to be consistent and it takes a least a month of continuous usage to see results. Be careful, as with all acids, it can remove the enamel on your teeth as well. After brushing with ACV, you will need to brush again with regular toothpaste, or rinse your mouth out really well.


  1. Strawberries

Gather some strawberries and mash them up into a paste. Apply the paste to your teeth using a soft, clean toothbrush or finger. Leave the paste on for 2 to 5 minutes. Wash off thoroughly all the strawberry paste and seeds. Brush your teeth with a fluoride toothpaste. This process should be repeated every time you brush your teeth, as it will take a few days to work.


Research has shown that both chemical and all natural whitener products can damage the teeth by removing the enamel. Bottom line all whitening products should be used in moderation. The best way to whiten teeth is by feeding your body lots of healthy foods for stronger bones, teeth and gums and omitting coffee, tea and sugary foods in your diet. If you smoke, stop smoking and brush and floss your teeth every day!

We will miss you Crystal

Published on November 12, 2013 by


As you take your new road,

We wish you a cup of success,

A pint of happiness,

And a jug of achievements.

May you live the life of your dreams each moment…..

Breast Cancer/ Domestic Violence Awareness Month

Published on October 15, 2013 by

breastcanceranddomesticviolenceoctoberWHAT is Breast Cancer?

Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women in the United States, aside from skin cancer. Breast cancer is a malignant tumor that grows in one or both of the breasts. Breast cancer usually develops in ducts or lobules, also known as the milk-producing areas of the breast. Breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer dealth in women ( after lung cancer).


WHAT is Domestic Violence?

Also known as domestic abuse, spousal abuse, child abuse or intimate partner violence (IPV), can be broadly defined as a patteren of abusive behaviors by one or both partners in an intimate relationship such as marriage, dating, family, friends or cohabitation. Domestic violence has many forms including physical aggression ( hitting, kicking, biting, shoving, restraining, slapping, throwing objects), or threats thereof; sexual abuse; emotional abuse; controlling or domineering; intimidation; stalking; passive/covert abuse (e.g., neglect); and economic deprivation.


11 Ways to keep your Teeth

Published on July 16, 2013 by


Oral health and overall health is a two-way street! Poor oral health can impact your teeth and gums if you have a health problem like diabetes or heart disease. Gum disease- a chronic inflammatory condition that is the major cause of tooth loss- has been linked not only to Type 2 diabetes and heart disease but also to an increase risk of dementia, erectile dysfunction, osteoporosis, stroke, rheumatoid arthritis and respiratory infections. Gaps in one’s teeth are unsightly, can affect speech and, of course, make it tougher to eat. The solutions, such as implants, bridges and dentures, can be expensive and require unpleasant procedures.


The good news is that it’s possible to protect your teeth and gums for years to come. Here are 11 tips from dental experts:


  1. Vitamin C is vital. One orange, or an eight-ounce glass of orange juice, contains more than 80 mg of vitamin C; red and green sweet peppers, guava, kiwi and Brussels sprouts are other good sources
  2. Get vitamin D to keep your calcium. People with low levels of vitamin D are more prone to tooth loss than other adults because, it is believed, the compounds in the nutrient reduce the amount of bacteria in the mouth.
  3. Give your teeth a cleansing workout. Munching on crunchy fruits and vegetables, such as carrots and apples, at the end of a meal or as a midday snack can serve as a sort of mini tooth-brushing session. The hard flesh acts as a cleanser and the chewing motion stimulates saliva production.
  4. Take in more omega-3. There has been promising research indicating that omega-3 fatty acids, found in salmon, mackerel and other fish, may help gum tissue heal.
  5. Embrace afternoon teatime. Black and green teas contain antioxidants that can help prevent plaque from forming on your teeth. Tea leaves also contain the tooth protector fluoride and is more effective than mints at combating bad breath.
  6. Work out.  Anything you do for your general health, including being physically active and maintaining a healthy weight, also helps protect your teeth and gums.
  7. Don’t let medicine dry you out. Many prescription and over-the-counter medicines can decrease saliva flow, which is a problem. The minerals in saliva serve as a protective barrier against decay and help keep teeth strong. Taking frequent sips of water or chewing sugar-free gum can help relieve dry mouth, but if these measures aren’t enough, ask your doctor or dentist about oral moisturizers or saliva substitutes.
  8. Relax. Add gum disease to the list of chronic health conditions that can be exacerbated by stress. Studies show that during periods of high stress, people are more apt to skip basic tooth care, like flossing, using mouthwash, or even brushing twice a day. That’s especially unfortunate because additional research shows that the stress hormone cortisol can aggravate symptoms of gum disease.
  9. Quit smoking. Smoking is a major influence on oral health; research shows that the habit increases the odds of developing gum disease, along with hindering many possible treatments.
  10. Floss, then brush. By flossing first, you can scrape off food trapped in the tight spots between teeth, which are prime spots for bacteria growth, and then brush it away.
  11. Keep up with cleanings. Regular six-month checkups allow your dentist to give your teeth a thorough cleaning and examine your mouth and gums for abnormalities.

Say Goodbye to soda, juice, and bottled water!

Published on July 2, 2013 by

Naturally Flavored Water   Naturally flavored water is so easy and good for you. Water is the healthiest beverage possible, and if you’re vowing to drink more of it, you may need to switch it up once in awhile so you don’t get bored. Bonus, by adding healthy fruits and herbs, you’re getting the benefits of those vitamin packed goodies, too. Throw some fruit and mint leaves into your water on your way to work and each sip kind of makes you feel like you’re at the spa. You can keep variety in your fridge to help motivate yourself to drink more.

Here are a few combination examples;

Strawberry-Mint, Orange-Cucumber-Ginger, Pineapple-Lime-Mint, Lemongrass-Mint-Vanilla, and Lemon-Lime-Orange.

The possibilities are practically endless. It’s up to your personal preference.

Energy Drinks are Rotting Your Teeth!

Published on May 28, 2013 by

640_Generic_Energy_DrinksThe popularity of sports and energy drinks, especially among teens, is cause for concern. A study published in the May/June 2012 issue of General Dentistry found that regular exposure (15 minutes a day, 4 times a day) to these drinks started causing serious enamel damage in as little as 5 days. Overall, energy drinks caused twice as much decay as sports drinks.

April is Oral Cancer Awareness Month

Published on April 25, 2013 by

Oral cancerApril is Oral Cancer Awareness Month!

Cancer of the mouth, or oral cancer, refers to cancer that occurs in the tissues of the mouth that include the tongue, lips, gums, tonsils and cheeks.  Mouth cancer is one of the most serious cancers, but is also one of the most preventable.

In between dental visits, it is important for patients to be aware of the following signs and symptoms, and to see their dentist if they do not disappear after two weeks.

  • Hoarseness, chronic sore throat, or change in voice
  • A sore or irritation that doesn’t go away
  • Red or white patches
  • Pain, tenderness or numbness in the mouth or lips
  • A lump, thickening, rough spot, crust or small eroded area
  • Difficulty swallowing, chewing, speaking or moving your jaw or tongue
  • A change in the way your teeth or dentures fit together when you close your mouth
  • An earache

Research has identified a number of factors that may contribute to the development of oral cancer.  Those at an especially high risk for developing oral cancer are heavy drinkers and smokers older than 50.  Frequent sun exposure increases the risk for cancer of the lips.  The human papilloma visus version 16, which is sexually transmitted, is related to the increasing incidence of mouth cancer in non-smoking patients.  It is likely that there is a complex interaction of many external and internal factors that play a role in the development of oral cancer.  Anyone can get oral cancer but the risk is higher if you are male, over age 40, use tobacco or alcohol or have a history of head and neck cancer.

Here at Martin Family and Cosmetic Dentistry, we do oral cancer exams at your new patient appointment as well as at your regular cleanings.  For more information about oral cancer please feel free to visit the attached dental link.