3 Habits That Help You To Have Healthier Teeth
Having a white smile helps to boost your confidence and improves the first impression you make on others. Regular visits to the dentist help to keep your teeth healthy and can also help to whiten your teeth. You also need to incorporate at-home hygiene practices in order to safeguard your smile. These small steps can have a large impact on your overall oral health over time, and they do not take a lot of effort to put into effect. Here are three habits that help you to have healthier teeth.
Replace your toothbrush every three months.
Your toothbrush is one of the most important tools you have to take care of your oral health. Over time, the bristles begin to fray and lose their original shape. At this point, they are no longer able to help you clean your mouth by removing plaque and food debris. Bacteria can grow on your toothbrush over time as well, increasing your chance of introducing that bacteria right back into your mouth. It is important to replace your toothbrush when the time comes. Dentists recommend replacing your toothbrush every three months, or earlier if you have suffered from a communicable illness such as the flu or strep throat.
Drink water after a meal or sugary snack.
Although brushing after you eat is ideal, the truth is that most people do not have the time to do that. The next best thing you can do is rinse out your mouth with water. This helps to dilute some of the sugar left behind on your teeth, and it may also help to loosen stuck food particles, making it easier to remove them when you do get the chance to brush. Make it a habit to keep a water bottle in your bag each day. This will help to not only remind you to drink water after eating, but will also help you to keep water close at hand as well.
Structure your diet to support your teeth.
You have heard that too many sugary snacks can increase your risk of developing cavities; however, you should also keep foods that are good for your teeth in mind as well. Dairy products such as cheese and milk can help fight against acid’s effects on your teeth by balancing the pH in your mouth. Calcium and phosphorus in these foods can also help to replace lost minerals in your teeth as well.
For more information, please call our office.
The Purpose Of Rubber Bands With Braces
If your child is about to get braces on his or her teeth, you may wonder why the orthodontist will use rubber bands in the process. Rubber bands are one of the vital components needed to make braces work, and there are two main reasons they are used. This will help you understand why orthodontists use these with braces.
To hold wire in place
The first place you will see rubber bands is on the brackets, which are found on each tooth in the child’s mouth. These rubber bands come in many colors, and your child may get to choose different colors at each appointment. The purpose of these rubber bands is to hold the wire in place. After the orthodontist places brackets on each of the teeth, he or she will insert a wire that runs from one side of the child’s mouth to the other. To keep this wire in place, the orthodontist uses small rubber bands.
To change the child’s bite
Braces are most commonly known for straightening a person’s teeth. While this is one of the main purposes braces serve, braces are also designed to help correct issues relating to a person’s bite. Bite refers to the way the top teeth and bottom teeth meet. In a perfect situation, a person’s top teeth would be positioned just past the person’s lower teeth when his or her mouth is closed.
If your child has an overbite or underbite, rubber bands can be used to fix this problem. If this is needed, the orthodontist will place special hooks on the brackets found on the child’s teeth, but these will only be placed on the teeth the child will use for the rubber bands. The rubber bands will be connected from the upper teeth to the lower teeth in a way that will force the child’s bite to shift.
The rubber bands are small and might seem insignificant, but they serve an important role. They place enough pressure on the upper and lower jaw to actually make it shift. If your child gets rubber bands, he or she should wear them constantly, except when he or she is eating or brushing his or her teeth.
Braces offer a great way to fix misaligned teeth and bites, and they are available for people of all ages. If you would like to learn more, contact our office today to schedule an appointment.
Broken Veneers? 3 Things You Should Do Before You See Your Dentist
While dental veneers are tough and durable, there’s a small chance that they can crack or break loose from the tooth’s surface. If either one of these things happen to you, call your dentist immediately to make an appointment for a repair. If you can’t get in to see your dentist right away — same day or emergency appointment — don’t worry. In most cases, broken veneers do not cause any pain or problems. However, you should do the following three things while you’re waiting for your appointment day to arrive.
Remove and Save Pieces
Remove any loose pieces of veneer along with any pieces that are barely hanging on to your tooth. If a piece of your veneer feels like it is solidly attached to your tooth, leave it in place. Save the broken pieces of veneer to take to your dentist by wrapping them in a paper towel and placing them in a hard container, such as a glass storage container. If your veneer came off in one solid piece, your dentist may be able to reattach it. If not, your dentist will have to order new veneers for you. Regardless, your dentist will probably want to inspect the veneer to see why it broke.
Check for Sharp Edges
After your veneer breaks, you may notice sharp places on your tooth caused by leftover bonding agent. The remaining broken pieces of veneer may be sharp as well. These sharp angles can cause damage to your gums, tongue and cheeks if you’re not careful. That’s why it’s important for you to take note of sharp places and make adjustments accordingly. You may find that chewing on the opposite side helps.
If you notice any sensitivity to hot and cold foods and beverages, you may want to avoid eating or drinking items that are extreme in temperature. If you’re experiencing extreme sensitivity, purchase some dental wax from your local drugstore and place it over the affected tooth. The wax will create a barrier between your exposed tooth and the things you eat, which should eliminate your sensitivity.
Continue to brush your teeth and eat normally until you see your dentist. Don’t worry about damaging your teeth through normal activity because you won’t. However, you may damage your teeth if you continue to pick at your tooth or any remaining pieces of veneer. Avoid doing further damage by keeping your hands and sharp objects out of your mouth.
3 Great Holiday Gifts For The Dental-Health Conscious Gift Recipients On Your List
It can often be difficult to come up with holiday gift ideas for everyone on your list. However, gadgets and devices to help improve oral health are items that everyone can use. Many are also fun items that people may feel guilty splurging on themselves, but will happily use when received as gifts. Here are three great gifts at several price-points that you can give anyone on your list, but will especially be appreciated by the oral-health conscious recipients on your gift list.
1. Water Flossers
Many people skip flossing just because they don’t like using string floss. Water flossers are a great alternative that not only remove the plaque between teeth that floss can, but they also help clean the surfaces of teeth to remove any plaque that remains after brushing. Some water flosser makers are coming out with special products for the gift-giving season, like flossers in bright colors.
People on your list who may especially love a water flosser include people who wear braces, which make string flossing much more difficult, and people who love gadgets that help make life easier.
2. Bamboo Toothbrush Sets
Bamboo toothbrushes are typical toothbrushes made with eco-friendly bamboo handles. These brushes make great low-price gifts if you are on a tight budget but still want to give a great, unique gift that will be put to use.
These brushes will be especially appreciated by anyone on your list who you know likes to be as environmentally friendly as possible. They may not know these brushes exist, and they will appreciate not only the brushes themselves, but also finding out that these brushes are available for them to purchase in the future can help them feel less guilt when throwing out their toothbrush every three months.
3. Unique Flavored Toothpaste Packs
While unique toothpaste may at first sound like only a gift that children would appreciate, there are sets of unique toothpastes with flavors aimed at adult taste-buds. These flavors can include rose, green tea, Darjeeling tea, bitter chocolate, and even pumpkin pie. If you know someone who loves tea, then imagine their face when they open your gift of a set of toothpastes, each with the flavor of a different type of tea. Unique toothpastes can please everyone on your list, and when the set is tailored to their taste-buds and favorite flavors, they will appreciate the thought you put into choosing their flavors carefully.
Whether you have a gift recipient on your list who you know is oral-health conscious, or you just need gift ideas that are fun and everyone can use, then look into one of these gift options. Your recipients will not only enjoy opening and using your gifts, but you can help them enjoy their next dental check-up after your gift helps improve their oral health by making oral-care fun for them
5 Tips For A Successful Dental Implant Recovery
If you are going to have dental implant surgery, you will want to know of the best way to recover from it. This will ensure that you are back to feeling normal once again and are able to eat and drink and return to work more quickly. Here are five tips to help you experience a successful dental implant recovery;
Prevent Infection: One of the number one reasons dental implants fail is because of infection. Infection happens when bacteria is able to get to the root of the implant and eat away at the gums, which causes infection and prevents the implant from being able to implant to the bone. You will have to have your dental implant removed, the infection treated and another one placed back in place. To avoid infection, you must brush and floss as normal and take extra care around the implant.
Stop the Use of Tobacco: Using tobacco is one of the other reasons dental implants fail. This is because tobacco causes the implant to break down. If you have a hard time stopping the use of tobacco, you should try and have the problem taken care of with treatments and therapy before you have the dental implant surgery.
Don’t Participate in Excessive Exercise: For at least three days after the surgery, you should be sure that you are not participating in excessive amounts of exercise. Since dental implant surgery can cause swelling, you will want to be sure that you allow the swelling to go down and not become worse. Excessive exercise will cause additional swelling and possibly even bleeding at the implant sight.
Don’t Rinse too Much: Although it will feel like you are cleaning your mouth out when you rinse, you can actually cause the healing process to slow down. You can rinse your mouth every once in a while. However, excessive rinsing can cause too much to wash away and prevent the implant from easily being able to attach itself to the bone.
Don’t Miss Your Follow Up Appointment: Even if you feel that your recovery has gone smoothly, you should never skip out on the follow up appointment after surgery. This is because your dentist may catch problems that you didn’t notice or feel and they will be able to correct it. Plus, your dentist will provide you with further tips for keeping your dental implants clean and safe from damage.
By following these five tips, you can be sure that your dental implant recovery goes smoothly and you can quickly get back to your everyday life.
Can Teeth Whitening Procedures Damage Your Gums?
One of the most common reasons people hesitate to have their teeth whitened is the fear that it will somehow damage the rest of their mouth, particularly the gums. Patients with sensitive teeth or gum disease are more likely to be concerned about this possibility. The truth, however, is that tooth whitening is a safe procedure, and any rare side effects usually resolve themselves within a day or two. If you are worried about the potential impact of teeth whitening on your gums, follow these four steps to protect your mouth.
Checking the Fit of Bleach Trays
Most complications from whitening occur when the trays holding the bleaching agent do not fit correctly. This tends to happen with home whitening kits, which are made to fit a wide variety of mouths and end up fitting no one perfectly. For those who insist on whitening at home, try to find a kit that does not extend over your gum line to minimize the bleach’s impact on your gums.
Protecting Your Gums During the Procedure
Dentists can offer more comprehensive whitening solutions, but they also use more powerful bleaching agents. Because of this, your dentist must take steps to guard your gums, typically through protective barriers and customized bleaching trays. You are less likely to suffer complications when whitening with a professional, but you may still see some discoloration or peeling afterward. It is important to then be able to recognize what is and is not a normal part of the healing process.
Understanding Gum Discoloration
When a bleaching agent does find its way onto your gums, it will whiten them as well. Depending on the levels of exposure, you may also experience minor chemical burns, which can burn, itch and peel. Thankfully, this irritation should clear up quickly, and most patients find themselves fully recovered within a few days. Rinsing your gums with warm water after whitening can help to remove any excess bleach and minimize the damage.
Recognizing a Negative Reaction to Whitening
Very rarely, a teeth-whitening patient will experience side effects that require medical attention. Should you experience pain for more than a week or pain that is too intense to eat or drink, contact your dentist for a followup examination. You may be prescribed a gel that can numb the sensation and allow you to function as your gums heal. Soon, your gums will be back to normal, and your smile will be brighter and more attractive than ever. If you still have concerns about whitening your teeth, don’t be afraid to consult with your dentist to better understand the process and have your mind set at ease once and for all.
4 Tips For Eating Immediately After Dental Implant Surgery
Missing teeth can quickly become the root of a number of problems. It is harder to speak and eat correctly while missing teeth. In addition, your teeth are more susceptible to disease due to the gaps that missing teeth leave. As a result, the easiest solution is to get dental implant surgery. Dental implants work as well as regular teeth; however, they need to be taken care of immediately after surgery in order to last long.
Avoid Chewing with your Dental Implants
Right after your surgery, your implants are still settling into your gums. This means that any unnecessary pressure can loosen your implants. Therefore, avoid chewing with your dental implants. Use your original teeth to chew foods. If it is impossible to eat without your implants, then only use them to chew for a few seconds. The less that you aggravate your implants, the faster they will heal.
Avoid Hot and Cold Foods and Beverages
Foods that are either extremely hot or extremely cold will cause the surgical area to open up. In addition, these foods commonly cause tooth sensitivity after a dental surgery. It is better to look for alternative food options than adding on to your pain. Also, your dental implants will collect stains the same way your regular teeth do. So staying away from hot beverages like coffee and tea will save you on teeth whitening in the long run.
Avoid Eating Sticky Foods
Sticky foods tend to lock on and hold to your teeth. With teeth that have fully formed, these foods can easily be removed. However, your dental implants are still delicate immediately after surgery. Therefore, you should avoid eating things like candy, gum, and tough meat.
Incorporate Liquid Foods into Your Meals
After your dental implant surgery, it is best to avoid chewing altogether. You can do this by consuming liquid foods like soups, shakes, yogurt, and applesauce. While this diet may not be enjoyable, you can mix up the type of meals you eat. For example, breakfast can consist of something soft like oatmeal, while you can have soup for lunch. You can then end the day with a more solid meal choice for dinner.
The foods you choose to eat after your dental implant surgery are a huge part of your aftercare. As a result, use these tips to ensure that you eat the right foods after dental implant surgery. Contact our office for more help.
How To Move Past The Gag Reflex When Wearing Your Dentures
If you have just got new partials and you find they gag you, it can be very hard to convince yourself to put them in, not to mention keeping them in for long periods of time. However, you have partials to replace missing teeth and the only other option you have at the moment is to go without teeth. This article will provide you with tips on how you can move past that horrible gag reflex and other options you may want to consider.
Dealing with a small gag reflex problem
If you gag a little bit when you put your partials in or take them out, then the chances are good that you will eventually get over it as soon as your mouth is used to the sensation of having the dentures rub against the roof of your mouth.
If you continue to have problems, it may be the way you are positioning your tongue. Try paying attention to how you have your tongue while you are putting them in. Take them out and give yourself a few minutes to recuperate. Try putting your tongue in a different position and try again until you find the right positioning for your tongue that doesn’t cause such an extreme gag reflex.
Dealing with a bad gag reflex problem
If you have a severe gag reflex that you aren’t going to be able to move past, then you may want to take your dentures back into your dentist. There is a chance they may be able to trim some of the dentures so the top part doesn’t go so far into your mouth. The dentist won’t be able to trim the dentures too much, or they won’t offer you the proper support and this can cause you more problems.
Alternatives to dentures
If you aren’t able to move past the gag reflex and your dentures can’t be trimmed enough to help, then you may want to consider other alternatives to replace the teeth you are missing. You may also be a candidate for dental implants or a bridge. These are other options you may have available to you when it comes to missing some of your permanent teeth.
Anytime you have an issue with your dentures, you should bring it to the attention of our dentists. There may be a simple solution or tips they can give you that will help you correct the issue.
4 Dental Emergencies And Steps You Can Take Before You Reach Your Dentist
An unusual accident or oral infection can quickly compromise your dental health. You may have to seek emergency dental care. However, the period between the time of the accident and the moment you reach your dentist is important. Depending on the type of dental emergency, there are steps you can take to prevent your condition from worsening before you get professional treatment. Here are a few examples of dental emergencies and associated steps you can take before you arrive at the dental office:
If you have chipped your tooth, save the broken piece. Rinse your mouth with warm water and bite down gently on a piece of gauze to stop any bleeding. A cold pack can be applied to your cheek to reduce swelling and help with the discomfort.
If your tooth is throbbing, it could be due to decay, an infection or severe inflammation. Your dentist will need to diagnose the cause of your condition. However, you can make your mouth more comfortable by rinsing thoroughly with warm water and flossing. These steps should help remove any food that may be lodged between your teeth. In addition, a cold pack can be applied to your cheek on the side where you are experiencing the discomfort. Try to avoid placing an aspirin on the gums that border your affected tooth; it can irritate the gum tissue.
If a dental crown comes off, coat the inside of it with toothpaste or denture adhesive, and put the crown back it place. This will help protect the underlying tooth until you reach the dental office.
Save the tooth, but be sure not to scrub it or wash it with soap. Instead, gently rinse it and place it back in its socket. If you can’t hold the tooth in its original position, place it in the pocket of your cheek or save it in a container of milk. Act quickly. If your tooth is left out of its socket too long, it may not be salvageable.
If you lose your filling, replace it with a piece of sugarless gum until you reach your dentist. As an alternative, you can use a bit of over-the-counter dental bonding material.
A dental emergency will require you to see your dentist as soon as possible. However, while you are on the way to receive dental care, take precautions to ensure that your condition doesn’t worsen. Nevertheless, never try to fully treat a dental emergency on your own. If you are in extreme pain or have dislodged a tooth or filling, contact our office immediately.
3 Steps To Follow When You Have An Abscessed Tooth
Tooth pain can be caused by a number of issues, but an abscessed tooth is a serious medical condition that requires immediate dental care. Not all toothaches are equal– if you experience extreme tooth pain along with fever, swollen lymph nodes in your neck, pain while chewing, foul smelling breath despite good oral hygiene, and swollen or very red gums, there is a good chance that you have a bad infection causing your tooth abscess. If you suspect an abscessed tooth, take the following steps:
Contact a Dentist as Soon as Possible
The longer an infection of the tooth and gums is left untreated, the worse it will get. If the pain from your tooth is unbearable, it is important to visit a dentist as soon as you can in order to clear the infection, and also hopefully save your tooth. If you are experiencing excruciating tooth pain at night or on a weekend, contact a 24 hour emergency dentist in your area. Not only will dental treatment give you some relief from the pain, it will also ensure that your infection doesn’t spread to other parts of your body. Your dentist will conduct several tests to determine the cause of your pain and infection, and it may be necessary to lance the gums around the infected tooth in order to relief pressure and remove a build up of pus.
Take Antibiotics as Prescribed
Emergency treatment of an abscessed tooth typically involves lancing as needed, followed by a course of antibiotics. If you want your infection to clear up properly, it is essential to take the antibiotics that you are prescribed according to direction, and finish the whole course. You may feel better after just a day or two of antibiotics, but failing to take every pill as prescribed can result in an even worse infection in your mouth, as bacteria can be left behind to replicate.
Don’t Avoid Follow Up Dental Care
Lancing the affected gums and antibiotics can do a lot to help the pain of an abscessed tooth, but it won’t fully solve the problem. In most cases patients require a root canal after a tooth abscess. If you want to prevent further dental problems and avoid having to have a tooth extracted, it is a good idea to follow up with your dentist as soon as possible to determine and schedule the treatment that is best suited for you.
4 Foods To Avoid After Implant Surgery
After making the decision to go through dental implant surgery, you need to make sure and educate yourself on all the ins and outs of what you can or cannot do. The last thing you want to do is jeopardize your new implants because you weren’t properly informed about what to expect. Even though you might think you can go back to doing the same things you did before, there are a few foods you don’t want to eat for at least a week after getting implants put in.
Anything that could end up getting stuck in your teeth.
Just about everything you eat is going to end up leaving some food particles behind, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t eat anything you like. Avoid seeds, chips, popcorn and anything else that you can think of that ends up getting stuck to the point where you have to pick the food out of your teeth.
If you have to chew an item for three times or more, you could wind up pulling the implants away from your gums. Salads, gummies, rolls, cookies, gum and hard fruit are just a few examples of food that you should avoid. Red meat should also be eaten with caution. If the meat isn’t tender, you need to avoid it for a little bit.
Hard candies, dried fruits and pretzels are hazardous to your new implants. Even though raw vegetables might be good for you, they are dangerous to your implants for the first week or so. Wait until your mouth has ample time to heal before going with the raw vegetables. In the meantime, their cooked counterparts will suffice.
Foods that are extremely cold or hot.
Eating foods that are extremely hot or cold can cause pain around the implant site. It can also cause your wound to end up opening up and prolonging the healing process. Meals that are hot shouldn’t be eaten right away. Let them sit for a little bit before you consume them. Avoid drinking with a straw for a couple days to prevent irritating your new implants.
After you get through the first week or two, you will be able to add some foods back into your diet. Your best bet is to discuss the foods you can eat with your provider. They will be able to examine the site and let you know what you should or shouldn’t do.
For more information about dental implants or the dos and don’ts of post-surgery, contact our office.
3 Ways That Anemia Affects Your Oral Health
Red blood cells carry oxygen to the tissues in your body, but if you have anemia, your body doesn’t make enough of these important cells. This can be a short-term problem, caused by nutritional deficiencies, or it can be a chronic problem, caused by other health issues. No matter the cause, anemia leaves you feeling tired and weak and it can have affects inside your mouth, too. Here are conditions that people with anemia need to be concerned about.
The surface of your tongue is covered in small bumps called papillae that are responsible for sensing taste. Glossitis is a condition that results when these bumps are lost, changing both the look and feel of the tongue. People with glossitis have smooth, shiny tongues that are red instead of the normal pink. The surface of the tongue can be swollen or painful due to the loss of the papillae. This can occur as a result of both iron deficiency anemia and pernicious anemia thanks to the deficiency of both essential nutrients and oxygenated blood. Your dentist can treat your symptoms with corticosteroids, medications that work by reducing inflammation.
Canker sores are round ulcers that form on the soft tissues inside your mouth, including the insides of your cheeks, the roof of your mouth, or on your tongue. These sores are white or yellow, have red borders, and are painful. Canker sores usually go away by themselves within 14 days, but if they last longer, you should see your dentist. When you have anemia or another autoimmune disorder, canker sores can recur frequently, so they may become an ongoing problem for you. Your dentist may give you an anesthetic mouthwash to numb the pain associated with the sores and may recommend rinsing your mouth with salt water.
Oral candidiasis is a fungal infection that affects your mouth; it’s also called thrush or a yeast infection. This infection causes white patches to form on your tongue, inside of your cheeks, or other soft tissues. Oral candidiasis won’t go away on its own, so your dentist will need to give you anti-fungal medication to kill the fungus.
Anemia is a condition that causes a lowered amount of red blood cells and it can affect your whole body, including your mouth. If you have anemia and notice any changes inside your mouth, make sure to make an appointment with one of our dentists.
Good Alternatives For Teeth Whitening Issues
If your teeth are discolored or stained, the obvious solution is to have them whitened. However, not everyone will be a good candidate for whitening. If you have certain dental conditions, such as a lack of enamel on your teeth or tooth-colored fillings or crowns, then a whitening solution is not going to work. In fact, getting a treatment will only make things worse by causing your teeth to end up a variety of colors. If whitening isn’t for you, there are other options you can consider. You can learn about some of those options below.
Bonding – Bonding can often be used to improve the color of your smile. It can also be used to take care of other problems such as chipped teeth or to fill in gaps between teeth. Some people choose to go with bonding over veneers because they are more affordable. The price can vary a lot from dentist to dentist, but veneers are always more costly.
To bond your teeth, the dentist will start by roughing up the surface using a special solution. This will give the bonding a good surface to adhere to. The dentist will then put the bonding on your teeth and use a special tool to mold it so it has the correct shape and a natural look. The bonding will be hardened on your teeth with the use of a dental-quality light. After the bonding is set, the dentist will finish up your teeth by polishing them so they have the shiny appearance of natural teeth.
Porcelain veneers – Most times a dentist will suggest going with porcelain veneers to whiten your teeth if a whitening treatment isn’t a valid option for your situation. To make the veneers, the dentist will grind your teeth down a bit to make room for the glue and the veneers. They will then take an impression of your mouth to send to the lab. At the lab, the technicians will make the porcelain veneers to match the color you and the dentist decided on. Once the veneers come in, the dentist will schedule an appointment to put them on. They will put the glue substance on your teeth and place the veneers on them. The dentist will verify that they fit correctly and have no issues.
Composite veneers – Your dentist may suggest composite veneers. These veneers are a bit different from porcelain veneers and they are made with a plastic material the dentist bonds onto your teeth. As with bonding, your teeth will be roughed up prior to putting the composite on them. The material will be shaped to fit your natural bite and the color will be the one decided on by you and your dentist.
Once you choose the right option for your needs, you will be able to achieve the nice, white smile you have been wanting. For more information, please call our office.
3 Reasons To Have Cosmetic Procedures Done By Your Family Dentist
If you are looking into cosmetic procedures for your teeth, such as if you want to whiten your teeth or have veneers placed on them, then you might assume that you should look for a specialist who focuses on cosmetic dentistry. Although there are a lot of great cosmetic-only dentists out there, however, you should know that a surprising number of family dentists are also qualified to perform these procedures. These are a few reasons to consider looking for a dentist who offers both family and cosmetic services.
1. Save Money
First and foremost, you should know that you can save a lot of money by using a family dentist who also offers cosmetic procedures. For one thing, many cosmetic-only dentists are considered specialists and charge higher rates. Plus, even if the rates for specific treatments are the same, you are sure to pay less for your actual office visits. Then, you can combine regular office visits and cosmetic procedures into one appointment to save as much as possible.
2. Ensure Proper Care After Cosmetic Procedures
After cosmetic procedures, it is important for you and your dental professionals to take proper care of your teeth. For example, if you have veneers, your dental hygienist will need to use a special polish and a different procedure than if you were having a regular cleaning done. Also, if you have recently had your teeth whitened, your dentist will need to be careful not to stain or damage your sensitive teeth in the days after the procedure. Although you can certainly tell your dentist about these things at your appointment, it can be easy to forget. If your family dentist is the one to do these procedures, however, there will be a greater chance that he or she will remember and provide you with proper aftercare after your cosmetic procedures.
3. Ensure Whole Mouth Health
Although a cosmetic dentist obviously cares about the health of your teeth and gums, he or she might be less likely to keep an eye out for potential problems while checking your mouth. Your regular dentist, however, will always be on the lookout for inflammations, cavities and other things that you should be concerned about. This can help you achieve better oral health in general.
As you can see, you don’t have to count on a cosmetic dentist for your cosmetic procedures. Instead, consider the benefits of choosing a dentist who offers both cosmetic and family dental services. our office can provide more guidance and advice.
Pros and Cons of Different Dental Implant Roots
Dental implants are a stable dental replacement option when a tooth or teeth are lost to trauma or decay. The essential implant process happens the same way regardless of implant type. An artificial root of some kind is implanted into or onto the jawbone where it will fuse during the healing process. And an artificial tooth is attached to that root via a post at a later date.
The condition and structure of your jawbone can dictate the type of implant your dentist recommends. The difference will mostly come down to the type of root structure used. Dentists have a few different options to choose from and each has its own pros and cons.
Screw or Cylinder
The most common type of dental implant is endosteal, which involves implanting the root straight into the jawbone. This root might have either a screw or cylinder shape.
For the screw-shaped root, a specialized drill is used to create a grooved hole in the jawbone. The screw is then able to twist down into that hole for a tighter fit. This custom fit means the screw roots provide some of the most stable implants capable of taking the highest bite force.
Cylinder roots are similar to the screw-shaped roots except the cylinders lack the exterior threading. The hole drilled thus doesn’t need the grooving and the cylinder is essentially dropped straight into the hole. This means that the cylinder roots are easier to implant, but this does come at a bit of a stability cost.
A blade-style root is a rarer option for endosteal implants. The root structure is thin but wide and shaped similarly to the end of a spade. This unusual shape can’t sustain as much bite force as the screw-type root. But this might still be a good option if you have a narrow jawbone that wouldn’t allow for the implantation of a screw or cylinder.
As with the other types of endosteal implants, the blade root still needs to have the post attached during a later procedure.
A plate-type root is typically found in subperiosteal implants, which are fitted above the jawbone rather than implanted into the bone. Your dentist will make an incision in your gums, fit the plate, and then allow the gum tissue to heal so the plate becomes fused in place. The plate already has a post attached so a second procedure for post attachment isn’t necessary. Instead, the artificial tooth can be fitted as soon as the gums have healed.
A plate root tends to be the best option if you have a shallow jawbones or bone decay that you don’t want to treat with a graft. It’s also a good option if you don’t want to cut down on the number of office visits required for the implant. For more information, please call our office.
Work On Those Fears That Prevent You From Going To The Dentist
If it’s been a few years since you’ve been to the dentist, and you can easily come up with excuses why not to go, maybe you have some anxiety about the whole event. It’s time to work on those fears. If you let your teeth and mouth get in bad shape, you could face some really challenging dental work in the future. Here are some of the common fears about going to the dentist and how you can get rid if them:
1. Fear of Pain
This is one of the major fears of dental work. Movies and television haven’t helped by portraying dentists coming at patients with large syringes and needles. The reality is that your dentist has a number of techniques to prevent you from feeling any pain. More effective local anesthetics, low-dose injectable anesthetics, and laser dentistry all prevent you from feeling anything but a little pressure during the dental work. Some dentists offer a variety of sedation techniques to make you drowsy during the procedure. Talk with different dentists about the techniques they offer to make your appointment a pain-free experience.
2. Fear of the Unknown
Sometimes it’s just not knowing what will happen during a dental appointment that causes the fear. Many dental offices now include videos on their websites that discuss the different procedures they do. Check out various websites and watch the videos pertinent to the work you need to have done. Then talk with your dentist office and have them explain their procedure step-by-step. Ask questions until you are comfortable which each step.
3. Mouth Breathing Issues
If you have allergies, you may find it difficult to not breathe through your mouth during a dental procedure. Congestion may cause you to mouth breathe regularly and the thought of not being able to can cause anxiety. Ask your dentist about taking an antihistamine before your appointment. Or use the plastic nasal strips that keep your airway open. While breathing through your mouth makes the dental work more difficult, your dentist can work for shorter segments, then break to allow you to breath easier through your mouth.
4. Gag Reflex Issues
Your gag reflex may have been triggered in previous appointments and that can be keeping you away from the dentist. Some of the procedures, such as taking x-rays, have improved so you’ll experience less moments where you feel like gagging. There are also a number of other things that people have found effective:
breath through your nose during the procedure
take a decongestant before the appointment to clear up your airways
use a throat spray that contains an anesthetic to numb the throat
suck on a cough drop that has throat numbing properties before the appointment
If you find that you’re avoiding going to your dentist because of these or other fears, talk with your dentist about it. They see a number of people who likely share your fears and can give you suggestions as to how you can overcome them. To learn more, call our office with any questions you have.
Increased Risk For Gum Problems Following Menopause
Although regular dental checkups help to diagnose periodontal disease early, they become even more important after menopause. As estrogen levels in the body drop, women become more susceptible to developing gum problems.
What Research Suggests
Studies suggest a link between hormonal changes and oral health. When estrogen levels decline quickly — as is the case following menopause — bone loss can occur. Consequently, the risk of tooth loss increases as bone mineral density decreases. The American Academy of Periodontology cautions that osteoporosis may put women at increased risk for periodontal disease, which can cause bone loss around the teeth. After menopause, women can develop loss of alveolar bone — the bones that hold the teeth — in the jaws. As the gums weaken due to bone damage around the sockets of the teeth, they become prone to infection.
Consequences of Decreased Estrogen
A decrease in estrogen levels in your body can cause your mouth to get drier. This creates an environment in which bacteria grow, and that can lead to tooth decay and problems with your gums. Dry mouth, a common symptom of menopause, results in less saliva in your mouth to neutralize the acids on which oral bacteria thrive. Bacterial plaque is the main cause of periodontal disease after menopause. Because plaque irritates gum tissue, good oral hygiene practices and regular trips to the dentist are essential to oral health. While regular brushing and flossing help remove plaque, your dentist can remove bacterial plaque from under the gum line where you can’t reach.
If your gums are red, dry and shiny, receding, painful, or bleed easily, these may be symptoms of periodontal disease. Since healthy gums are normally pink in color, shiny areas can be signs of plaque buildup. Even more serious, receding gums may be an indication of bone loss in the jaw. Other signs of gum problems include loose teeth, pus between the teeth and gums, or spaces between your teeth. Loose teeth are usually a sign of later-stage gum disease. Spaces can be a sign that your gums have receded. Tell your dentist if you have decreased saliva flow, a burning sensation in your mouth, and altered taste. All of these can be signs of gum disease. Your dentist will check to see if you have gum inflammation, pockets between your teeth and gums, or loose teeth.
You can prevent gums problems after menopause with common general dentistry practices and a few other steps:
Getting regular dental checkups to detect problems early.
Having your dentist or a dental hygienist clean your teeth every six months or more often as needed.
Brushing your teeth at least twice daily and flossing every day.
Informing your dentist about any medications you take, as certain medications you may need as you get older can contribute to bone loss and lead to gum disease.
Taking a daily dose of calcium and vitamin D to help improve jawbone mass and density.
Bad Breath? Eat These Foods To Hide It
Foods like onions and garlic contain pungent oils that are carried throughout your blood steam and into your lungs. When you breathe out, the pungent smells are exhaled. Fortunately, there are foods you can eat to mask the bad breath.
Herbs and Spices
Herbs and spices have oils that fight bad breath. Some of the herbs and spices you can choose from include:
Add these herbs and spices to your diet each day to have fresher breath no matter what you eat.
Green tea is healthy for you, and it helps with bad breath. It contains catechin, which is a powerful antioxidant that fights the bacteria in your mouth that causes the odor. You can purchase green tea supplements in pill form to take each day, or purchase green tea bags to make your own. It comes in many flavor varieties, such as orange, honey, mixed berry, lemon ginseng, and mint.
Yogurt has active cultures that fight the bacteria that cause bad breath. Make sure the yogurt you purchase has probiotics, which is good bacteria that will overpower the bad bacteria in your mouth causing the bad smell.
Fruits and Vegetables
Add apples and pears to your diet to fight bad breath. This fruit works well because it increases the production of saliva in your mouth. Saliva is important as it decreases the bacteria, and washes it out of your mouth. Berries, melons, and oranges are rich in vitamin C, which cuts down on bacteria in your mouth. This fruit also combats gingivitis and gum disease, which can also cause bad breath.
Crunchy vegetables like carrots, celery, and cucumbers also increase the production of saliva in your mouth as long as you eat them raw.
Almonds, peanuts, cashews, etc., work like fruits and crunchy vegetables washing away the bacteria. Nuts also act as tiny toothbrushes on your teeth, which also helps cut down on bad breath.
Sugarless gum can mask the odor of bad breath, as well as increase the production of saliva. Drinking water keeps your mouth moist, and the water rinses out your mouth.
Eating these foods and drinking water and tea is a temporary solution to bad breath problems. You should make sure you floss and brush your teeth and tongue each day. Regular dental cleanings is important, and should be done twice per year. If you continue to have bad breath, the problem could be more than what you eat. Your dentist will be able to determine what the problem is, and then give you the treatment you need. Talk to one of our dentists to find out other ways you can fight bad breath.