David B Malin, DDS, PA

Your family dentist in Asheboro, NC

Questions About Your Dental Care



Pregnancy and Dental Health

Toothpaste Ingredients


Can tooth decay affect infants?

Yes, most often in the upper front teeth, dentists call this "nursing bottle decay". This is caused by excessive exposure of the teeth to milk and liquids containing sugars. To prevent this, babies should not go to bed with a bottle of milk or juice.

When should I start brushing my child's teeth?

If you see teeth, then you should be brushing them twice a day. Your child may put up a fuss, but eventually they will get used to it.

How much tooth paste should I use?

Not much. Just a dab for flavor will do it. If you let them brush their own teeth, watch and limit the amount of toothpaste they use. After they are done, say "Now it's mommy's (or daddy's) turn" and make sure the job is done completely.

When should I bring my child in to see the dentist?

I hope you will bring them when you come in to get your teeth cleaned, so they can watch you and gain confidence through you. I usually start putting kids in the chair at 3 years of age. Much of it depends on how cooperative they are.

How can I protect my child's teeth?

Set a good example, be consistent in brushing their teeth early in their life, and watch them do it themselves as they get older to insure they are doing it properly, take them to the dentist regularly, fix problems when they are small, insure they get the right amount of fluoride, and limit sugary drinks, candy, and sweets.

Tell me about fluoride?

Teeth that form with fluoride are 50% stronger than teeth without fluoride. This is why the majority of city water supplies are fluoridated. If you are on city water in Asheboro, you do not need extra fluoride. If you are on well water, fluoride tablets are indicated for your children from ages 2 to 10. This is the time when the baby molars and the adult teeth are forming. We want them to be strong and we want the fluoride inside the teeth.


Can everyone get Invisalign?

Invisalign is not for everyone. A free consultation is provided to determine if you are a candidate.

Does Invisalign really work?

Yes. In orthodontic and dental practices worldwide, Invisalign has been effective at straightening teeth.

How does Invisalign work?

Invisalign uses 3-D computer imaging technology to map the complete treatment from start to finish. From this plan, a series of custom aligners unique to your treatment is produced. Each aligner is worn for two weeks and gradually moves your teeth, before being replaced by the next in the series until the final position is achieved.

How much does Invisalign cost?

If you are a candidate for invisalign, the cost is $4000. This includes the x-rays, photos, impressions, and retainer at the end. There are no extra costs unless you lose an aligner or retainer. We have 4 payment options available which will be discussed at your consultation appointment.

How does the cost of Invisalign compare to traditional braces?

At least in this area, traditional braces cost $5500-$6000.

Does insurance pay for Invisalign?

If your dental plan has orthodontic benefits, they will be covered to the same extent as conventional braces.

How long do I have to wear the Invisalign aligners?

It depends on how severe your malocclusion is but most patients are wearing them for one to two years.

How often do I have to wear the Invisalign aligners?

Every day, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, except when you are eating. If you aren't wearing them, your teeth aren't moving and it will take much longer for you to be finished.

Do I have to wear a retainer after Invisalign?

You will have to wear a retainer for 3 months 24 hours a day / 7 days a week just like your aligners. After that, you will have to wear the retainer while you sleep. If you stop wearing your retainer all together, your teeth start moving somewhere you don't want them to. You are responsible for keeping your new beautiful smile after your treatment is complete.

Does Invisalign hurt?

You will wear the aligner for two weeks before getting the next set. The first 2 days of wearing a new aligner your teeth will be sore.

What is IPR (interproximal reduction)?

To create space we will need to remove some enamel between your teeth with a small disc. This does not hurt. Typically we remove between 0.1 and 0.5 mm in selected areas. Not everyone needs IPR and not every tooth needs IPR.

Pregnancy and Dental Health

Why are my gums bleeding more now that I am pregnant?

Great changes are happening to you and due to the increased hormone levels you may have "pregnancy gingivitis". When plaque isn't removed from your teeth, it is an irritant that your body tries to fight. You must clean your teeth even better when you are pregnant.

How does gingivitis affect by baby?

There is a correlation between pre-term delivery, low birth weight babies and gingivitis.

How do I prevent gingivitis?

If you keep your teeth clean and remove the plaque that forms on your teeth, your gums will not be inflamed. This involves brushing at least twice a day and after meals if possible and flossing at least once a day.

Are there any dental procedures I should avoid while pregnant?

As a rule we try to avoid x-rays while you are pregnant. However if you have a toothache we will take one and use a lead apron to cover your baby. Routine exams, cleanings, and fillings are performed while you are pregnant. The use of local anesthetic is OK. It is best if you consult with your obstetrician whenever medication is prescribed.

Will the baby take calcium from my teeth?

If you take care of your teeth, eat a healthy diet, and take your pre-natal vitamins, this should not be a concern.

Toothpaste Ingredients

What are the anti-caries / anti-cavity agents in toothpaste?

Toothpaste has sodium fluoride, sodium monofluorophosphate, stannous fluoride, anime fluoride, or xylitol in it. All have been shown to decrease cavities by preventing demineralization and promoting remineralization of the enamel. Analysis of 70 clinical trials show a 21 to 28% decrease in cavities with the use of fluoridated toothpaste.

What are the anti-plaque / anti-gingivitis agents in toothpaste?

Toothpastes that state they are anti-plaque / anti-gingivitis aids have triclosan/copolymer, stannous fluoride, or zinc citrate in them. Colgate Total has the triclosan/copolymer as the active ingredient and studies show an average plaque reduction of 48% and an average gingivitis reduction of 26%. Triclosan is a broad-spectrum anti-bacterial agent that causes gaps in the bacterial cell membrane and ultimately bacterial cell death. Crest Pro-Health uses stannous fluoride which is anti-microbial and bactericidal.

What are the desensitizing agents in toothpaste?

Toothpastes that state they are sensitive tooth aids have potassium citrate, potassium nitrate, potassium chloride, stannous fluoride, or strontium chloride in them. They all work by blocking the ends of the dentinal tubules. Dentin looks like soda straws under a microscope. When fluid moves out of them, your tooth feels pain. The covering on the root tends to be very thin and if you brush or erode that covering off, the dentin can be exposed. Potassium nitrate is the most common agent in the US and is found in Sensodyne Pronamel, Colgate Sensitivity, and Crest sensitivity. It takes 4-6 weeks for them to work so don't expect miracles over night.

What are the anti-halitosis (bad breath) agents in toothpaste?

Toothpastes that state they are anti-halitosis (bad breath) aids have essential oils, chlorine dioxide, triclosan/copolymer, stannous fluoride, or sodium hexametaphosphate in them. Chorine dioxide, essential oils, and zinc chloride have been shown to reduce halitosis by inhibiting the production of volatile sulfur compounds. Triclosan/copolymer and stannous fluoride with hexametaphosphate have been shown to reduce the bacteria associated with volatile sulfur compounds.

Do whitening toothpastes work?

Not really. The agents to whiten your teeth are not in contact long enough to do any good.

Can I be allergic to something in toothpaste?

If you are experiencing ulcers, soreness, redness or roughness in your gums, cheeks, or tongue; you may be allergic or sensitive to some of the agents in toothpaste. Some people can not tolerate the flavoring agents (essential oils), the detergent/surfactants like sodium lauryl sulfate, the anti-gingivitis agents, or the whitening agents. My suggestion is to go back to the toothpaste you were using before you were having a problem or find one that doesn't have all the extra ingredients in there.

Which toothpaste is best?

I think they all do a good job. If you have sensitive teeth, I do recommend sensitive toothpaste.