14 Toothbrushing Mistakes: Part 2

14 Toothbrushing Mistakes: Part 2

Here are a few more pointers on what you may be doing wrong while brushing and help you fix those mistakes!

In case you missed part 1, you can read it here tips 1-7 in part 1.

Do your kids make some of these mistakes?

8. You may not be flossing regularly (Trust us, we know when you don’t)

You may have heard recent claims in the media that the benefits of flossing are unproven.  Flossing helps get the bacteria between your teeth that your toothbrush can’t reach.

9. You may not be changing your toothbrush often enough.

We recommend changing your toothbrush every three to four months. Old, worn out, and cracked bristles can begin to harbor bacteria which you don’t want to be brushing your teeth with.

10. You shouldn’t store your toothbrush in a closed container.

While traveling it’s ok to keep your toothbrush in a closed container, but storing it this way on a daily basis is not recommended. Without proper air circulation bacterial growth can form on your toothbrush. We recommend storing your tooth brush in an open cup on your counter.

11. You use your significant others toothbrush.

Just say no! There are multiple reasons why this is not advised, one being using someone else’s toothbrush can increase your risk of infection. Your body is not ready to take on someone else’s germs.

12. Not replacing your toothbrush after illness.

It’s always a good idea to replace your toothbrush after you are sick.

13. You’re constantly disinfecting your toothbrush.

No need to do this. The best way is to run your toothbrush under water and store it up right to let it dry out.

14. If you’re not brushing before bed (Shame shame!)

We understand, sometimes after a long hard day the idea of spending two whole minutes brushing your teeth before bed seems like an eternity and it would be much easier just to skip out. Don’t do it! Not brushing before bed is giving all those germs in your mouth 8-10 hours (depending on how long you sleep) to turn into plaque, causing decay and irritating your gums.

No one is perfect, but if we start with small changes in brushing our teeth it can improve your dental health and your overall medical health as well.

If you have questions about any of these topics please give us a call, we are happy to help further explain.

You can read the tips 1-7 in part 1.

Updated 2.5.19

Causes of Yellow Teeth For Kids

Causes of Yellow Teeth For Kids

Parents often ask us about how to whiten their teeth and how to keep their kid’s teeth from yellowing.

Lets start with the main causes of discoloration: Extrinsic Stains and Intrinsic Stains.

Extrinsic Stains

Extrinsic stains affect the surface of the enamel, which is the hard, outermost layer of teeth. Although tooth enamel can be easily stained, these stains can typically be removed or corrected.

You’ll see the evidence of extrinsic stains on the surface of your teeth’s enamel, the hard outer layer that protects the interior of your tooth.

Children’s teeth can be yellowed for many of the same reasons adult children end up discolored, as well as some reasons adults might not encounter.

Food and Drink

Plenty of foods can cause staining of the outer layer of the teeth. For adults, this normally takes the form of coffee stains. For children, it could be any number of the things they consume.

Combined with the bad brushing habits common in small children, and you can end up with this problem before you know it.

Smoking and Chewing Tobacco

Nicotine from smoking and chewing tobacco doesn’t just develop an unhealthy addiction; it leaves yellowish or brownish surface stains on your teeth, too.

Intrinsic Stains

Intrinsic stains occur within the inner structure of the tooth, called the dentin, making these stains more difficult to remove.

Intrinsic stains develop within the tooth itself due to a variety of factors that causes alterations to the light-transmitting properties of the enamel and the material underneath.


Multiple prescription medications can cause intrinsic staining as a side effect. The antibiotic tetracycline, for example, can cause intrinsic staining if taken by children while their teeth are still developing. For adults, the acne-fighting drug minocycline can stain teeth.

Additional Causes


As you age, the outer layer of enamel on your teeth gets worn away, revealing the natural yellow color of dentin.


Some people have naturally brighter or thicker enamel than others.

Tooth Trauma

Impact of an accident or physical trauma can crack tooth enamel and damage the tooth’s interior.

Grinding Teeth

Tooth grinding is an unconscious habit some people have when they’re stressed, especially while asleep. Also known as bruxism, it’s quite harmful to tooth enamel, weakening it to the point of cracking and yellowing.

Preventing Tooth Discoloration

There are a few ways to keep your families teeth a bright white.

  • Good brushing habits
  • Eating better
  • Not using tobacco
  • Regular teeth cleaning at your dentist

Ask us about these next time you come in for a visit.

Make an appointment with Dr. Port if you’re kids are due for a teeth cleaning.

How Does Brushing Affect Your Appetite?

How Does Brushing Affect Your Appetite?

Brushing works to remove plaque from the surface of our teeth but does that affect your appetite?


Brushing doesn’t affect your appetite its self but it is a mental trigger to eat, or not eat for many.

It can also work as a que that you’re done eating for the day. Or it can do the opposite as a reminder you need to eat.

Teeth Brushing Routine

Think about your families brushing routine.

  • Do you brush first thing in the morning and then eat breakfast?
  • Do you brush right before bed at night?

Controlling Your Appetite

Brushing your teeth 2 or more times a day is among the best ways to protect yourself from getting cavities.

It can also help control your appetite until the your next meal which is a great way to reduce cravings for sweets.

Drinking Water Affects Appetite

If you feel a sudden urge for a specific food, try drinking a large glass of water and wait a few minutes. You may find that the craving fades away, because your body was actually just thirsty.

Brushing your teeth doesn’t always affect your appetite but it can help reduce your appetite for sweets.

Your Families Appetite

If you or your kids get cavities or just want to control how many sweets you eat, try adjusting your routine.

  • Try brushing after breakfast instead of before.
  • Try moving up your brushing teeth time before bed to mark the time your done eating for the day.

5 Tips To Help Kids Keep New Year’s Resolutions

5 Tips To Help Kids Keep New Year’s Resolutions

The excitement of the holidays is over and that means motivation to keep new years resolutions might be too. Parents can help their kids stay motivated to keep their resolutions with these tips.

1. Set a Resolution Example

This is a great way to teach kids about long-term goal making, but if you give up after a month or two, it will show them that they can give up too. Kids learn a lot from their parents and pick up on things you didn’t realize you were teaching them.

2. Stay Positive About Your Resolutions

Staying positive about your resolutions as you work towards it is just another way you can set a good example for your kids. Even if there is a setback, staying positive teaches the same thing.

3. Keep Resolutions Reasonable

The resolutions and goals may look doable when you set them at the new year. But after the holiday break when work and school start up, it might be much harder than you thought. Maybe the resolutions are too big or extreme but rather than abandon them, you can reset your resolution and help your kids do the same.

4. Start Small and Build to Bigger Resolutions

Level up your kid’s resolutions by helping them maintain manageable steps. Getting in the habit of completing resolutions will help in the long run and make bigger goals easier to stick with.

5. Check up but Don’t Hound Resolutions

A visual reminder of your goals and their goals is a great way to keep everyone engaged. Stick it to the fridge, bathroom mirror, tv, something that stands out. Then you don’t have to ask them each day how it’s going, it’s there for everyone to see.


Keeping your resolutions and helping your kids keep their resolutions isn’t easy but these tips can keep everyone on track to make sure the resolutions make it to the end of the year. You can do it and so can your kids!

14 Toothbrushing Mistakes: Part 1

14 Toothbrushing Mistakes: Part 1

Do you diligently brush your teeth two times a day? There is a good chance that the way you’ve been brushing your teeth all these years could be wrong!

In this two part series we will be giving you some pointers and tips on how to brush better and keep those pearly whites happy and healthy!

1. You’re Likely Brushing Your Teeth Too Hard.

Hard and vigorous brushing over time can lead to wearing down the enamel and gum recession exposing the root of your tooth. This can result in a need for root canals, fillings, and even extractions. Try to remember that plaque is soft and doesn’t require aggressive brushing. Being thorough is much more important!

2. You’re Likely Holding Your Brush Too Tight.

Adding to number 1, holding your brush with a heavy grip can lead to brushing too hard.

3. Your Toothbrush Bristles Are Possibly Too Hard.

Did you know toothbrushes come in different levels of softness? I’m sure your gums have noticed if you accidentally purchased a medium or hard toothbrush! The softer the better as hard bristles can weaken your tooth enamel.

4. You’re Likely Holding It at the Wrong Angle.

The American Dental Association recommends you hold your toothbrush bristles at a 45 degree angle to your teeth. Make sure to brush in tiny circles or small strokes (think one tooth at a time). Brush all the surfaces of your tooth that you can reach including the inside and biting surface.

5. You’re Likely Not Brushing Long Enough.

The American Dental Association says that you should brush for two minutes. Take your time and really focus on brushing each tooth. We recommend an electric toothbrush. Not only does it do a lot of the work for you, most come with a two minute timer.

6. You May Be Forgetting to Brush Your Tongue.

Your tongue is covered with bacteria and food that gets caught causing bad breath. The majority of people brush their teeth twice a day, but are they making sure to brush their tongues too? Seems crazy but brushing that gunk off can reduce the bad breathe in your mouth.

7. You’re Likely Not Watching What You’re Doing.

In today’s society doing just one thing at a time seems wasteful. You’re not doing yourself any favors by multi-tasking while brushing.  Instead of checking Facebook or finishing up those last minute chores, look at yourself in the mirror. Really focus on brushing each and everyone one of your teeth, all the way to your gum line.

You can read the tips 8-14 in part 2.

If you have any questions please call our office, we’re happy to help!

Updated 1.15.19

10 Signs that Your Baby is Teething (Part 2)

10 Signs that Your Baby is Teething (Part 2)

Each baby is unique and teeth at different times. Usually Some teeth come through as early as 3 months or as late as 14 months.

Be ready by knowing some of the signs of teething by reading the next 5 signs below. Read teething signs 1-5 if you missed part 1.

6. Pulling of Ears, Rubbing of Cheeks and Chin

Rubbing the area around their jaws to create counter pressure that helps relieve some of the pain so naturally they will do it. Watch out for more active hands.

7. Chewing Fingers

The easiest thing to chew on, fingers! Just like chewing toys, chewing on fingers relieves some of the discomfort. Make sure to keep your baby’s hands clean.

8. Teething Cough and Rashes

The extra drool caused by teething can cause coughing due to saliva collecting at the back of your baby’s throat. chafing and facial rashes. Listen for coughing and check for raches.

9. Swollen Gums and Appearance of Tooth Buds

Red and swollen gums are a big sign that they’re teething. You can help relieve some of his discomfort by gently rubbing your finger over their gums which might be better then them biting their own fingers.

10. Crying for No Apparent Reason

Some babies tend to suffer a great deal of discomfort during teething as their gums become inflamed. If your baby is constantly crying or whining then the chances are that they may be teething.


You’re ready to spot the signs of a teething baby! Some teeth can come through as early as 3 months or as late as 14 months.

When Should Your First Dentist Appointment Be? Check out our Parent Education page to find out.


291 W. Lakewood Blvd.
Suite 5.
Holland, MI 49424




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