Tuesday, September 19, 2017

How Veneers, Crowns and Dental Implants Help Patients


Dental technology continues to enhance and improve the dental experience for patients, giving them multiple options for common dental issues that were previously unavailable.

This is true for dental patients who have cracked, chipped, worn, rough teeth or have teeth that are missing.

In the past, patients with less than perfect teeth had to live with the embarrassment and discomfort as dental treatments were more expensive and considered unnecessary, cosmetic procedures.

Over time with new technology, once pricey, elaborate procedures have become quick, routine procedures that are no longer for the wealthy.

It is rare to naturally have a perfect smile where all the teeth are white, smooth, proportional and straight. It is the small deviations of a person's smile that makes it their one-of-a-kind smile. Many patients, however don't see their imperfections this way. Some patients have trouble chewing, and speaking as well as headaches and jaw pain that is a result of their dental imperfections.

It is the crooked, non-proportional, jagged teeth that are most often treated by a dentist in order to ease the patient's pain and discomfort as well as enhance their confidence and self-esteem.

What kind of dental treatments are available for patients with less than desirable teeth?

The most common are veneers, crowns and dental implants.

What Are Veneers, Crowns and Dental Implants?

You've likely heard of these before and have a vague idea of what they are and what they do. Here is a brief summary of each:

Veneers

Veneers are thin shells of porcelain that are placed to the front of teeth to enhance or correct their shape, size and texture. Veneers are a quick procedure that can immediately change your smile for the better.

Crowns

Crowns are great options for patients who have moderate tooth decay or teeth that are chipped, cracked or worn-down. These gold, zirconia or porcelain coverings, go over the impacted tooth to prevent further damage and to keep the strength of the tooth intact.

Dental Implants

For patients who are missing a few teeth here and there, smiling can be unpleasant. You may think your smile is forever ruined and the thought of dentures scares you. Dental implants are the best solutions for your case. Implants are for patients who still have most of their natural teeth. Dental implants fill the empty space left behind with a naturally-looking tooth-like crown.

The Benefits of Veneers, Crowns and Dental Implants

Veneers, crowns and dental implants can do wonders in restoring or enhancing your natural, unique smile. All three teeth procedures can give you your dream smile that you'll be proud to show-off. The confidence in one's smile can also improve your mood and make you more approachable as you'll be laughing and smiling away.

Besides enhancing your smile to its maximum potential, these dental treatments can correct and restore the proper functioning of your bite, allowing you to comfortably bite and chew and speak clearly. Being able to do these basic oral functions, a patient's quality of life can be greatly improved.

With modern dental equipment and technology, patients who have a less than ideal smile because of their tooth imperfections now can easily achieve the smile they've always wanted.

Patients should contact their dentist to discuss which option would best achieve their desired results.

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Saturday, September 16, 2017

What Is Dry Mouth and When Is It a Problem?


Many medications and illnesses have a side effect called "dry mouth". A lot of people don't understand what exactly dry mouth is and why it is a problem. If you have ever suffered from it though, you know it isn't pleasant and brings on even more issues. To help bring more clarity to this medical issue, here is an explanation on what dry mouth is, when it becomes a problem, and how it is treated.

What is Dry Mouth?

The condition of dry mouth is exactly how it sounds; the mouth feels dry. This is more than just your standard feeling you get when you're thirsty. Instead, the mouth feels dry all the time. Some of the symptoms that are:

· Frequently feeling thirsty, even after drinking

· A dry feeling throat that is often sore

· A sticky or dry feeling in the mouth

· Tongue looks red and raw and feels dry

· Sore in the corners of the mouth

· Cracked lips

· Odd burning and/or tingling feeling in the mouth and tongue

· Hoarseness

· Constant bad breath

· Difficulty speaking, tasting, swallowing, and chewing

· Dry nasal passages

· Periodontitis and Gingivitis, marked by red, bleeding gums

· Tooth decay

While everyone experiences these symptoms at one time or another, it isn't considered dry mouth until it is extreme or lasts for more than a few days.

Why is it a Problem?

The reason the mouth feels dry is that there isn't enough saliva being produced. This condition is not necessarily a major concern, but it depends on the circumstances. The doctor or dentist you visit will help find the root of the problem, which determines how much attention it needs. There are many reasons it comes, including:

· Side effect of a medication

· Dehydration

· A sign of another health problem

If you are taking any medications, that is the first suspect to dry mouth. If that is ruled out, the amount of water you drink every day is examined. A physical exam may take place to rule out any major problems like nerve damage, malfunctioning salivary glands, diabetes, and oral cancer.

For many sufferers, the biggest problem of dry mouth is constantly feeling uncomfortable. The unquenchable thirst interferes with daily routines and the sores on the mouth hurt. It also interferes with wearing dentures. What's more is that saliva is vital to maintaining the pH balance in your mouth. It also helps wash away bacteria and food left in your mouth. Without enough saliva, your teeth are at a major risk for decay, gum disease, and infections, like thrush.

How is it Treated?

The first step is to talk to your doctor if you are taking any medications. They can help you make adjust your dose or switch brands to minimize the side effect. If not, another medication or mouth rinse can be used to increase saliva production or just restore moisture to the mouth. They can also run tests to make sure there are no underlying issues if medication isn't the source.

Talk to a dentist about possible causes and treatments as well. They will want to examine the damage done to your teeth and gums to make sure you are okay in those areas. Most dentists can do oral cancer screenings and prescribe mouth rinses too.

Other ways to boost saliva or general moisture in the mouth are to:

· Suck on candy or chew gum (sugar-free varieties, of course)

· Increase your water intake to keep the mouth moist

· Keep a vaporizer near you, to increase moisture in the air

· Try not to breathe through your mouth, but through your nose instead

· Use a saliva substitute that is found over-the-counter in most pharmacies

It is best to not let dry mouth go on for too long, if you can help it. Don't self-diagnose and treat without visiting your doctor or dentist to ensure that there are no major problems.

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Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Why There Is So Much Emphasis on Flossing


Good dental health can be described as having a mouth that looks and smells healthy, is full of clean and bright teeth that are anchored in solid bone. The gums should be pink and don't bleed at the slightest touch, and people don't raise a curious eyebrow while they stare at something in your teeth.

Brushing can do a lot to help you reach this level of dental health, but that alone isn't enough.

Flossing has to be an integral part of your daily oral hygiene routine to ensure that you are preventing problems and maintaining a healthier smile.

Flossing is Easy to Forget

We all lead busy lives, and when you're rushing out the door, or you're having guests over, or you're trying to catch up on work, it's easy to let the "little things" slide. Sometimes it's just a lot easier to shower, brush your teeth and head out the door.

Flossing may not be "fun," but if you do group this as one of the "little things" and forget about it, it can have just as much negative impact on your oral health as forgetting to brush.

Flossing the Right Way

Dental care professionals may talk a lot about flossing and why it's important to do every day, but, just like brushing, you can't get away with a half-hearted effort.

It's important to use the right technique to make sure you're cleaning out as much plaque as possible.

There's no big secret to this technique. It's the same thing you've been told for years. But just to make sure everyone is on the same page about this, here's a quick rundown of the most effective and efficient flossing technique.

1. Use about 18 to 24 inches of floss.

2. Wrap most of the floss around one of your middle fingers, and then a little more of the other end around the other middle finger.

3. Leave an inch or two for the actual flossing.

4. While holding the floss tightly between thumbs and forefingers of both hands, use a gentle rubbing motion to guide the floss between your teeth.

5. Push the floss down to your gums, and a little below the gum line, and curve the floss into a C shape.

6. Gently rub the side of the tooth with up and down motions, moving the floss up and away from the gums.

7. Don't force the floss because it may bruise your gums or cause them to bleed.

8. Floss every tooth, from the front to the back.

Should You Brush or Floss First?

A lot of people ask that question, worried that one may be more effective than the other. They may wonder if it's best to floss in the morning before the day gets started, or wait until the end of the day and make sure that they clean out any food particles that may have been lodged there throughout the day.

The best answer, though, is that as long as you're flossing, it doesn't really matter if you do it before or after you floss. Or if you choose to floss in the morning or in the evening.

(Of course, some may tell you that if you're questioning whether to floss in the morning or at night, you should just do both.)

Flossing once a day (at least) is a critical part of your overall dental hygiene. Don't put it off and don't let good habits slide. Your teeth will thank you for it.

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Sunday, September 10, 2017

Who Are Dental Sealants For?


You may have heard of dental sealants, but you're not sure what they are, how they work or who they benefit. You can only guess that they block out food particles, hence, acting as a seal, or barrier.

If this is what you thought sealants are, you're correct. Dental sealants are clear, thin, flexible, resin barriers are applied over the back molars to keep food particles from getting dislodged between then or in crevices and indentations on the tooth surface.

Dental Sealants

Dental sealants can last up to 10 years and can be easily replaced when chips or excessive wear is evident. The sealant looks and feels like the natural tooth so they are comfortable to wear and are aesthetically pleasing. They can handle the same wear and tear as the teeth themselves. In many cases, patients don't even notice the sealants.

The process for applying sealants involves a couple, though simple steps:

1. The teeth are thoroughly cleaned

2. Each tooth is thoroughly dried

3. The surface of the teeth are roughened using an acidic agent

4. The teeth are then rinsed and dried

5. The sealant is then painted onto the teeth and dried. A curing, UV light may be used to speed up the drying process

They are applied much like a composite resin crown where the "cement" is hardened and permanently affixed into place using a UV light.

Dental sealants provide an extra barrier to protect teeth from cavities and shouldn't be used in place of brushing.

Who Would Best Benefit From Dental Sealants?

In almost every circumstance, dentists will recommend dental sealants for young patients, typically those between 5 and 7 years old. This is the age childrens' permanent molars erupt. Putting sealants on before this before the baby molars fall out will mean that the sealants will need to be reapplied later.

It is also during this time that children begin brushing their own teeth for the first time, meaning proper brushing techniques are often not followed or closely monitored. Their lack of coordination, focus and attention makes them less likely to practice proper oral hygiene procedures. Children often dread brushing their teeth and are impatient. They often don't brush long or as frequently enough, use the wrong brushing and flossing techniques or simply ignore to do any dental hygiene at all.

On top of insufficient or improper dental hygiene, children tend to have a sweet tooth, preferring sugary foods and drinks over healthy ones. The excessive sugar and simple carbs that decay and produce tooth enamel eating acid that lead to tooth decay.

Tooth decay, most commonly referred to as cavities, is among the most prevalent and preventable health issues among children. Kids are either not taught proper dental hygiene techniques or they are not taught the importance of taking care of their teeth and gums.

Dental sealants help give children extra help in protecting their teeth and gums.

Teenagers and adults who have had no decay or fillings are also candidates for dental sealants.

While dental sealants aid patients who have a hard time adequately brushing, they are not normally recommended to seniors. This is in large part due to the fact that many seniors are missing their molars or their molars are too fragile to accommodate the resin of the sealants.

Dental sealants are great for keeping your child's teeth protected from cavities and plaque build-up. Proper, regular, dental hygiene should, however, be done.

If you're interested in getting sealants for your child or teenager, or to see if he or she is a candidate, contact your dentist to schedule an appointment.

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Thursday, September 7, 2017

Would Your Teeth Pass the Tissue Test?


How can you tell if you need Crest 3D White Whitestrips? Try the tissue test! Then use Whitestrips for a noticeably whiter smile.

Monday, September 4, 2017

How Long Do Dental Crowns and Bridges Last?


Quality-made dental crowns and bridges are the solution if you have damaged or discolored teeth and need their appearance and shape to be improved. Another good reason is if you have gaps where teeth have been removed, and you don't want the remaining teeth to spread out into those areas and create a bad bite.

Crowns also are needed for a variety of reasons, including

  • keep teeth strong for biting and chewing
  • help to prevent a tooth from fracturing
  • restore a tooth that has fractured
  • cover a tooth that has previously had a root canal
  • protect a discolored tooth,
  • cover a broken one
  • hold a dental bridge in place
  • cover a dental implant

Cosmetic dentists are trained for this specific work and are ready to professionally correct such problems and make you and your mouth smile!

Dental crowns, often commonly called "caps", provide a tooth-like shape and structure that covers the entire tooth, strengthen the tooth, and are very functional. They are made by a special machine in a dental laboratory or sometimes right in the dentist's office if he or she has the equipment and staff.

Ceramic and porcelain crowns are meticulously matched to the color of your natural teeth so that they easily blend in and are not obvious. Porcelain fused to a metal shell is both attractive and strong. However, other materials such as metal and gold alloys, ceramic and acrylic are stronger than porcelain and are often especially recommended for back teeth.

Bridges replace one or several missing teeth and are cemented to natural teeth or implants, which serve as anchors for the bridge. Replacement teeth are attached to a crown that covers the abutment.

Crowns Can Last 15-20 Years With Proper Care

Research has shown that approximately 90 percent of crowns will not require major treatment within five years, and 50 to 80 percent of crowns will last between 15 and 20 years, which is a long period of use.

The length of time varies greatly depending on a multitude of factors including the most important of all, which is good oral hygiene. The failure of crowns and bridges can be due to the formation of a cavity where the crown and tooth meet. A bridge may lose support if the bone or tooth that is holding it in place gets damaged from dental disease. If you tend to grind or clench your teeth, ask your dentist how this could affect your crown and what you can learn to do about it.

Another factor is good nutrition. Avoid refined carbohydrates and sugars because they promote an acidic environment in the mouth. Instead, stick to a diet which is anti-inflammatory, alkalizing and rich in antioxidants.

You need to keep your teeth and gums healthy and follow the good dental hygiene practices of brushing thoroughly twice a day and flossing daily including under your bridge, avoid chewing sticky and hard objects, and seeing your dentist and hygienist at least twice a year for examinations, follow-up care and professional cleanings.

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Friday, September 1, 2017

Dental Health Issues That You Need To Take Care Of Right Away


Many people are content to simply brush and floss their teeth without regularly scheduling comprehensive oral exams. Unfortunately, failing to have your teeth checked by a licensed professional at least once or twice per year can result in serious issues. If you haven't been diligent in scheduling preventative dental exams, there are a few signs and symptoms that could indicate that you need treatment or intervention right away.

Gums that are red, swollen, sore and inflamed often indicate the presence of gingivitis or more advanced periodontal disease. Your gum tissues should be both healthy and resilient. If they bleed when you brush your teeth, you need to schedule an appointment immediately. When the health of the gums is low, the natural tooth structures are at great risk.

When gum infections are allowed to spiral out of control, this can lead to tooth loss, infection of the underlying bone structure and even systemic infection. This is why people with gum diseases are more susceptible to cardiovascular and whole-body problems. Once harmful bacteria escape the confines of the mouth and are allowed to enter the bloodstream, they can wreak havoc in many areas.

Some people have teeth that are hypersensitive and that may even feel a bit loose. This could be a sign of infection, particularly if your gums are irritated as well. If the underlying problems are not resolved, the hypersensitivity will only increase and the natural tooth structures will continue to be come looser until loss occurs.

Chronically bad breath is another symptom that should be checked out by a dental health professional. It usually means that there is an active colony of bacteria nearby. Simply having plaque and tartar deposits cleared away will likely resolve the problem for good. This way, you won't have to continue masking unpleasant odors with gum, costly mouthwash solutions or mints.

Teeth that are cracking, chipped, fractured or otherwise weak should be inspected by a licensed dentists. Your provider can let your know whether or not these problems are the result of a nutritional deficiency. He or she can also use veneers or crowns to prevent further tooth damage.

It is important to take note if your tongue is perpetually coated. This is often the case for people with chronic halitosis. Harmful bacteria can hide on the surface of the tongue and flourish here. This can also indicate that the natural pH of the mouth interior has been disrupted and needs to be corrected. Whenever there is a proliferation of potentially dangerous organisms in the mouth, the likelihood of tooth decay is heightened.

People should also be cognizant of how past dental work is performing. Certain cosmetic and structural corrections can begin to break down over time and may need to be replaced. Thus, if you have dental implants or have had root canal therapy performed in the past, you definitely want to schedule regular office visits with a trusted local provider. This is the best way to ensure that small issues are effectively identified and resolved, before these problems start to spiral out of control.


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