Tag Archives: dental health awareness

February is Childrens Dental Health Month … Celebrate with Us!

SMILE!! February is National Childrens Dental Health Month and GPS Dental is excited to CELEBRATE with our Little Patients and their families!

What is Childrens Dental Health Month?

Brought to the public by the American Dental Association, every February thousands of dedicated dental professionals, healthcare providers, and educators come together to promote the benefits of good oral health to children, their caregivers, teachers, and others during Childrens Dental Health Month.

Understanding Why Baby Teeth Are Important

Baby (primary) teeth are a child’s first set of teeth. A baby’s teeth start to come in at 6 to 10 months, and by the time a child is 2½ to 3 years old, all 20 baby teeth will have come into the mouth. Taking care of a child’s baby teeth is important for the child’s overall health and development.

Baby teeth are important for children to:

  • Chew and eat foods. Children need to eat healthy foods every day to grow and be strong. Children with tooth decay are less likely to eat crunchy foods, such as fresh fruits and vegetables. Being able to eat these foods promotes good nutrition and a healthy weight.
  • Speak clearly. Children who lose baby teeth too early may have trouble making certain sounds. This can make it hard to understand the child. A child may need speech therapy to improve speech problems that may develop because of missing teeth.
  • Have self-confidence. Children with decayed front teeth tend to not smile or may cover their mouth when talking. Sometimes they stop playing with other children. A healthy smile helps give children the self-confidence needed to have good social experiences.
  • Stay healthy. Tooth decay in baby teeth can lead to infections that can cause fever and pain. If not treated, the infection from tooth decay can spread to other parts of the head and neck and lead to severe swelling.
  • Keep space for adult teeth. Baby teeth hold space for adult teeth growing in the jaw. If a baby tooth is lost too early, other teeth that are already in the mouth will move into the space. It can block out the adult tooth trying to come in and cause crowding. The upper and lower jaws may not meet properly because of the crooked teeth.
  • Related Article: Oral Diseases and Tooth Loss… GPS Dental Can Help

Why is dental health important for kids?

Did you know that 42% of children from the age 2 to 11 have had dental caries or cavities in their primary or baby teeth?

AND … did you know that tooth decay is the most common chronic childhood disease?

That’s why promoting childrens dental health to families is important to Dr. Skrobanek and his Team. Developing good dental health habits at an early age, including scheduling regular dental visits, helps children get a good start on a lifetime of healthy teeth and gums. They can avoid many of the problems that result from poor oral health, including gum disease, cavities, and tooth decay.

Related Article: Dental Health for Kids: Brushing, Avoiding Cavities and More

Having a Healthy Mouth Also Means:

• Healthy growth and development

• Being able to focus and learn

• Lower dental care costs for your family

Why do children’s teeth decay?

Tooth decay is caused by bacteria in the mouth. These bacteria make a sticky substance called plaque that can eat away at a tooth’s enamel. Poor oral hygiene can raise your child’s risk for tooth decay. A dentist can diagnose tooth decay with an exam and X-rays.

What will a Dr. Skrobanek do for toddler tooth decay?

Dr. Skrobanek can remove decayed parts of the tooth and perform either a dental filling or a dental crown to fill holes in the tooth. For a filling, he uses a tooth-colored composite resin or an amalgam filling.

How can I help my child develop healthy habits?

Here’s how to keep cavities away:

  1. Start good oral habits early. Teach kids to brush at least twice a day with fluoride toothpaste and to floss regularly.
  2. Get enough fluoride. Regular use of fluoride toughens the enamel, making it harder for acid to penetrate.
  3. Limit or avoid some foods.

Things You Can Do to Help Your Child:

• Brush your child’s teeth with fluoride toothpaste twice a day.

• If your child is younger than 3 years, brush with a smear of fluoride toothpaste.

• If your child is age 3 to 6 years, brush with a pea-size amount of fluoride toothpaste.

• Young children will want to brush their own teeth, but they need help until their hand skills are better. Brush children’s teeth or help children brush their teeth until they are about 7 or 8 years old.

• Be a role model for oral health! Brush your teeth with fluoride toothpaste twice a day (in the morning and at bedtime) and floss once a day.

• Serve healthy meals and snacks like fruits, vegetables, low-fat milk and milk products, whole-grain products, meat, fish, chicken, eggs, and beans.

• Limit the number of snacks your child has in a day.

• Do not give your child food for rewards.

• Take your child to the dentist for a check-up by her first birthday and keep taking her.

• If your child has not gone to the dentist take him.

Related Article: Why is it important to schedule your dental exam twice a year?

GPS Dental Can Help too!

Visiting the Dentist with Your Child

Children need to visit the dentist to keep their teeth and mouth healthy. If children have regular dental visits, the dentist and dental hygienist can take care of their teeth and find oral health problems early. Having regular dental visits also teaches children to value good oral health.

At Your Child’s Dental Appointment, our Dental Team Will:

  • Check your child’s teeth and mouth.
  • Talk to you about the best way to take care of your child’s teeth. For example, brushing your child’s teeth with fluoride toothpaste after breakfast and before bed.
  • Share other ways to help prevent tooth decay (cavities). For example, putting fluoride varnish or a sealant on children’s teeth. 

Tips for Visiting the Dentist:

  • If your child asks what will happen at the dental clinic, give a simple answer. For example, say:
    • “They may count how many teeth you have.”
    • “They may clean your teeth to make them shiny and bright!”
  • If you don’t like visiting the dentist, don’t share that information with your child. That might make your child worry about going, too.
  • Set up a pretend dental chair. Pretend to be the dentist or dental hygienist. Look in your child’s mouth and count her teeth; then talk to her about brushing her teeth.
  • Read books or watch videos with your child about visiting the dental clinic. Don’t use books or videos that have words like hurt, pain, shot, drill, afraid, or any other words that might scare your child. 
  • Let your child bring his favorite toy or blanket to the clinic.
  • If you find out that your child will receive a small toy or new toothbrush at the end of the visit, remind your child of this reward.
  • Plan a fun activity for after their visit to the dentist.

We love our little patients and strive to make their dental visits comfortable and fun! When they enjoy visiting Dr. Skrobanek and his Team, they will likely brush their teeth regularly and look forward to their next visit! We will do our best to schedule your children’s visits together, if that makes it easier for you to bring everyone at the same time!

Thank you for giving your child healthy dental habits that will last a lifetime!

Dr. Gary P. Skrobanek’s experienced and friendly team at GPS Dental offers affordable dental care for all ages in San Antonio, TX area. Our Brooks City Base dentist office is conveniently located and offers early morning appointment times Monday through Friday to meet your needs. At GPS Dental, we promote dental health awareness to our patients and provide most dental services, from family and general dentistry to dental implantssleep apneaTMJ / TMD Treatmentcosmetic dentistry and much more. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Call us at 210-633-3477 to make an appointment.

Dental Health Awareness: Gum Disease & Heart Disease


Periodontal Disease is a Pre-Cursor to Heart Disease

Every now and again, you’ll have a heart-in-mouth moment that leaves you speechless or struggling to find the right words to say. Once you learn how much your heart health works in conjunction with your oral hygiene, you’ll have one less thing to worry about. As innocuous as it seems, how you maintain your teeth affects your most vital organs. Gum disease of any kind can lead to heart problems if you don’t address it right away.

Dental Health Awareness: How Are They Connected?

Periodontal disease is a type of infection in and around your teeth structure that can affect your gums and tissues.

If you have this disease, you are more likely to be at risk of suffering a heart attack, in fact, you are two to three times more likely to experience one, according to Harvard University. Why? Any inflammation or swelling caused by periodontal disease can lead to hardened arteries. Consequently, the blood flow to your heart is slowed. Your gums are full of blood vessels. Once bacteria infects those gums, your bloodstream is likelier to be affected by the bacteria, which can cause inflammation throughout your body. The presence of additional toxins can affect your heart, leading to heart disease or even a stroke.

Related Articles:

How are Diabetes and Oral Health Related?

Show Your Teeth Some Love: Gum Disease & Your Heart

Dental Health Awareness: How Do You Get Periodontal Disease?

Periodontal disease can derive from several internal bodily issues, but also poor lifestyle choices.  Practices influencing the development of this disease are not brushing or flossing your teeth enough, bad eating habits, and lack of exercise. If you are a frequent smoker or have diabetes, you’re also prone to periodontal disease, which, in turn, makes you a higher risk for heart problems.

Gingivitis, which involves the swelling and bleeding of gums, is the most notable precursor to periodontal disease. ‘Peri’ means around and ‘odontal’ refers to teeth. So if immediate action is not taken, the structure that surrounds your teeth within your jawbone weakens. At some point, your teeth may loosen, leading to potential extraction.

The bacteria in dental plaque is a primary cause of this disease. Having superior dental health awareness and scheduling regular check-ups will help you eliminate that plaque as soon as possible to reduce any chances of contracting the disease.

Dental Health Awareness: Can Preventing Periodontal Disease Eliminate Heart Disease?

There’s no definitive proof that limiting or eliminating periodontal disease has a direct effect on preventing heart disease. However, it can diminish any risk of getting it.

Routine brushing and flossing help your teeth stay in excellent condition. If you do have gingivitis or signs of it, you should seek attention from your dentist, and it helps to ask for a demonstration on how to brush and floss properly. It could also be beneficial to get as many cleanings as required by Dr. Skrobanek at GPS Dental.

Improved lifestyle habits as well as fixing any misaligned or crowded teeth can reduce your chances of getting this debilitating oral disease. Stress and fluctuating hormones are also possible triggers that you need to note if you want to curb this disease from happening or spreading.

Strong dental health awareness and paying attention to your overall health can ensure that your mouth and heart are as healthy as possible. Let GPS Dental direct your path towards exemplary oral hygiene and find out how you can prevent or eliminate periodontal disease now.

Dr. Gary P. Skrobanek’s experienced, friendly team at GPS Dental offers affordable dentistry and is a gentle family dentist in San Antonio, TX area. Our Brooks City Base dentist office is conveniently located and offers early morning appointment times Monday through Friday to meet your needs. At GPS Dental, we promote dental health awareness to our patients and provide most dental services, from family and general dentistry to dental implantssleep apneaTMJ / TMD Treatmentcosmetic dentistry and much more. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Call us at (210) 633-3477 to make an appointment.

New Year, New You: Dental Health Awareness



We begin the New Year with resolutions or goals in various areas of our lives … including family, finances, health, fitness and career. However, it’s also important to our overall wellness that we also strive for optimum dental health.

We have all noticed various articles urging us to brush and floss daily and make sure to visit our dentist twice each year for our dental appointments; however, sometimes we don’t make the connection as to why dental health awareness is so important to our overall health. Whether you’re resolved to improve your tooth brushing habits or prioritizing the completion of a dental treatment, understanding the benefits of doing so may keep your motivation high.

Just like a fitness goal, it is important to begin by taking small consistent steps each day to achieve your goals. There’s no use signing up to run a marathon if you can’t jog around the block!!

Here are some dental health awareness tips that you can turn into goals to help you strive for optimum dental health:

Dental Health Awareness: Improve your Brushing and Flossing Habits

Let’s start small … are you brushing your teeth and flossing every day?  These are simple ways for you to begin improving your dental health. It is important to brush your teeth twice a day using fluoridated toothpaste and a soft-bristle manual toothbrush or electric toothbrush.

When brushing, position your toothbrush toward your gum line at a 45-degree angle and move the toothbrush across all surfaces of your teeth to effectively remove plaque. Remember to replace your toothbrush every 3 to 4 months; especially after you have had a cold or flu or if the bristles are frayed.

It is also important to floss once a day to remove any food particles and plaque that has accumulated throughout the day.

Daily brushing and flossing will help you prevent gum disease, tooth decay and bad breath. The additional daily use of antimicrobial or fluoridated mouth wash will also help to improve your oral health.

Dental Health Awareness: Make Healthy Food and Drink Choices

An important part of achieving your dental health goals is to make healthy food and drink choices, especially for snacks. When you consume food and beverages that contain acids and carbohydrates, you are contributing to tooth decay. That’s why it’s so important to brush after meals and snacking.

When making choices for beverages, the healthiest thing you can drink is water. It helps to rinse your mouth reducing the cavity-causing buildup of bacteria and plaque. We don’t realize how many of the “healthy” drink options we make every day that are not healthy at all. As, many of them are loaded with sugars and acids, even the sparkling waters that we assume are healthy.

Dental Health Awareness: Improve Your Smile

The fastest and most economical way to improve the appearance of your smile is to whiten your teeth. It’s quick and easy with lots of options and can help remove surface stains and deep stains. Many of these stains are caused by coffee, tea, red wine and the foods you eat; however, the medications you take can also be causing your teeth to look yellowed and stained.

Don’t be fooled by over-the-counter or trendy teeth whitening kits. They can be costly and dangerous to use, as some are so harsh that they can remove the enamel from your teeth! It’s always best to work with Dr. Skrobanek to directly to whiten your teeth. GPS Dental has several options to whiten your teeth whether you want to schedule an in-office whitening or you need an at-home option.

Whitening toothpastes are also available and some contain peroxide bleaching agents as well.

Dental Health Awareness: Cosmetic Dentistry

More than ever, a beautiful smile opens doors to new opportunities and may be one of your dental health goals for this year. Many choices are now available to resolve crooked, stained, or misshapen teeth. From tooth-colored fillings to nonmetal crowns and bridges; bonding to whitening and veneers, Dr. Skrobanek can give you options through cosmetic dentistry to maximize your potential for the gorgeous smile you’ve always wanted.

Dental Health Awareness: Restorative Dentistry

You may have decided that this is the year that you’re going to complete all of the restorative dental treatments that you’ve been putting off. Whether you need a new crown, implant or filling, when you complete these procedures, you are helping to preserve the structure of your teeth and maintain proper alignment which can improve your oral health.

Dental Health Awareness: Stop Using Tobacco Products

When you stop using tobacco products of any kind, you will improve not only your oral health, but also your overall health. If this BIG Resolution is on your list, there is no better time than the present to stop smoking or using smokeless tobacco.

If you think the vape craze is a healthy alternative to smoking tobacco, think again. Not only can vaping increase the chance for gum disease and eventually tooth loss, but it can cause a variety of other problematic health problems, including wounds that won’t heal, vaper’s cough (similar to smoker’s cough) and chronic bronchitis to name just a few. Many harmful, even toxic chemicals have been found in the liquids used in e-cigarettes, like formaldehyde. Some can cause cancer. Here’s an article from ScienceNewsforStudents called, “Concerns Explode Over New Health Risks of Vaping”.

There are a lot of free online tools, groups to help you stop smoking, even apps that can lend support if you or a friend or family member is trying to stop smoking. It could be the most important thing you ever do.

Below are several organizations that offer assistance and support to help you stop smoking:

Dental Health Awareness: Routine Dental Appointments

Making a resolution for you and your family to visit the Dr. Skrobanek at GPS Dental for their twice a year dental appointment is key. Not only can these routine visits help prevent oral disease, but they can also reveal an existing disease in an early stage. Make sure you’re visiting the dentist every 6 months to keep you on track with any treatment you may need.

We hope this has helped you increase your dental health awareness and knowledge, as patient education is very important to us and our team. If you have questions about any of these subjects, we are here to help you get the support and care you and your family need.

Dr. Gary P. Skrobanek and his experienced, friendly team at GPS Dental offer affordable family dentistry and gentle dental care in the San Antonio, TX area. Our office is conveniently located and offers early morning appointment times Monday through Friday to meet your needs. At GPS Dental, we provide most dental services, from family and general dentistry to dental implants, sleep apnea, TMJ / TMD Treatment, cosmetic dentistry and much more. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Call us at (210) 633-3477 to make an appointment.