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Getting Rid of Cavities? Consider These 3 Tips for Pain-Free Fillings

Posted by on Oct 10, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Getting Rid of Cavities? Consider These 3 Tips for Pain-Free Fillings

Children in America are not particularly diligent in maintaining their dental health, and this becomes especially clear when you take into consideration that half of all American children get cavities. Once your children’s dentist detects cavities, it’s vital that your children get fillings as soon as possible in order to prevent the cavities from further worsening and decaying. Getting cavities filled is not always a fun experience. The sound of the dental equipment and tools, as well as the environment, can be horrifying for some children. Making an effort to ensure that the experience is as pain-free as possible can really help ease stress and dental anxiety. Consider the following three tips. Ensure Sedatives Have Taken Effect Before Starting The key to having a pain-free cavity-filling experience is finding an experienced and patient dentist. Your children’s dentist should suggest different types of local anesthetics that can be injected into the gums so that the area becomes numb. Your children should still feel some pressure from the dental instruments and tools being used but should not feel pain. There are several different types of local anesthetics that are recommended. All of them are equally effective. While it doesn’t really matter which local anesthetic is chosen, it’s crucial that your children’s dentist is well versed on how to inject the anesthetic properly. If the anesthetics are injected too deep, complications, like hematoma formation, can arise. It’s important that your children’s dentists are patient when administering the local anesthetics. They need to wait until the anesthetics have completely numbed the gums before they can start. The dentists should check to confirm that your children have lost sensation in that area of the gums before starting to fill in the cavities. The prick from the injection can be painful. Most dentists recommend applying a topical anesthetic. Cover Exposed Nerves with a Liner When filling in the cavities, your children’s dentist needs to be careful with the tools and instruments that they are using. As there is a limited amount of space inside the mouth, the dentists need to be careful not to bump into or scratch any other nerves or exposed tissues. Ensuring that only the area where the cavities lie are worked on and exposed can prove to be beneficial. To ensure that other areas of the mouth do not become exposed to the dental tools and instruments, some dentists will go out of their way to cover exposed nerves and tissues with a liner. Covering exposed nerves and tissues will not only prevent the dental instruments from coming into contact with the areas but also prevent these areas from getting contaminated. Contamination can lead to infections and other unwanted problems. Take Ibuprofen After the Appointment The next several hours after the cavities have been filled tend to be the most painful and uncomfortable. The gums are still sore and may be experiencing some swelling. The gums can easily become irritated as well. As the gums heal during this period, the nerves will send signals to the brain indicating that they are in pain. Blocking these signals from getting sent can help reduce the amount of pain experienced. The best way of doing so is to give your children some ibuprofen or other type of pain reliever immediately after the appointment. As...

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How You Can Help Your Kid Feel Good About Their New Braces

Posted by on Aug 12, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How You Can Help Your Kid Feel Good About Their New Braces

It’s recommended by the American Association of Orthodontics to have your child screened for dental inconsistencies by the age of seven, which is when their adult teeth are forming but bones and gum tissues are still pliable and easy to manipulate for treatment purposes if necessary. But if your child ends up needing braces, they may be hesitant to wear them for fear of being a bit different than their friends at school. Here are a few tips and tricks you can use to help your kid feel more comfortable wearing braces so they can reap the rewards of a bright, healthy smile for a lifetime: Highlight the Positive There’s a good chance that your little one will complain about comfort and convenience after having their new braces put on, so it’s important not to let them dwell on the negative aspects they experience. When your child complains, acknowledge their feelings and then quickly highlight a positive aspect about wearing the braces. For instance, you can focus on the fact that they can look forward to straight, beautiful teeth once the braces come off. Not only will this habit help minimize the complaining, but it will encourage a healthy habit of looking on the positive side of things, even when at first glace things look dim. Make a point to ask your child what they think the benefits of wearing braces are from time to time to help build their confidence about wearing them. Brighten Things Up Investing in some colored rubber bands to wear with your child’s braces is an excellent way to make the experience a fun and positive one. Colorful rubber bands will provide your kid with an opportunity to express their personality and personalize their style, which will give them and their friends something to smile about when spending time together – their friends may even be envious of their tooth bling! The colorful rubber bands can also stimulate your child’s mind and body when they’re worn, so they can be used to create a positive effect on their mood throughout the day. For instance, yellow invokes motivation and happiness, while blue helps keep the mind and body calm. Ask your little one to pay attention to their feelings when wearing different colored rubber bands so they are able to make a connection between the power of their colored bands and their mood for the day. Host Group Play-Dates Host some group play-dates for your child and other kids in the community who wear braces to help boost confidence levels. These group play-dates will give your kid a chance to get-together with others who are in the same boat as them, so they don’t end up feeling lonely or like they stand out from everyone else. They’ll have an opportunity to realize that plenty of other kids wear braces, even if they don’t happen to go to the same school or regularly play at the same parks. These play dates will also give parents an opportunity to educate your children about proper dental care by planning fun activities such as making homemade toothpaste. The parents can use these play dates as time to support each other too. Work on Oral Hygiene Encouraging healthy oral hygiene while your little one wears braces will help ensure that...

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Tips For Dealing With Persistent Bad Breath Issues

Posted by on Jun 6, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Tips For Dealing With Persistent Bad Breath Issues

One of the most embarrassing oral health issues you can struggle with is bad breath. In most cases, bad breath is merely a symptom of another, more serious health problem. If you’ve been suffering from bad breath issues, the key to resolving it is to narrow down the underlying root cause. Here are some of the things that can contribute to bad breath to help you determine what’s causing your problems and treat them at the source. Hygiene Problems If you fail to brush your teeth on a regular schedule or you’re skipping your routine dental appointments, that can lead to persistent bad breath problems. This type of hygiene behavior leaves food particles behind that can cause bad breath. In addition to the problems with your breath, this kind of problem can also lead to gum disease, swollen gums and tooth discoloration. Health Issues If you’ve been diagnosed with an oral infection, periodontal disease or something similar, you’ll find that it can affect your breath. The same can happen with respiratory infections, sinusitis and similar illnesses. An infection in the mouth can lead to bleeding, red gums and the potential for abscesses in your gums and teeth. These problems can also lead to problems with loose teeth, fever, sore throat and similar symptoms. Persistent Dry Mouth Dry mouth can be a bothersome, persistent condition sometimes caused by salivary gland problems, health conditions or even medication. Dry mouth can allow bacteria to thrive in your mouth, which causes foul odors. You might even find that you have trouble eating dry foods or having prolonged conversations. Diagnosis Options If you have any reason to believe that your bad breath could be caused by any of these problems, the first thing you should do is to reach out to your dentist or oral health professional. He or she will conduct a complete physical examination to confirm the cause of your problem. It’s important to work with a dentist, because there are other subtle changes that your dentist might notice that indicate other problems. For instance, a person with diabetes who has persistently high blood sugar may end up with fruity tones to their breath. A dentist can spot that smell quickly and may suggest that you seek diagnosis and treatment sooner than you otherwise would. In addition, odors similar to ammonia may mean that you’re experiencing kidney problems. Your dentist will inquire about your medications, existing health conditions and any other concerns that you might have. If your dentist suspects any signs of health problems, he or she will advise that you talk with your primary care provider. Treatment Choices Treatment options can vary widely, just as the causes can. Once you’ve determined the underlying cause of your bad breath, combating it starts with treating that source. If your problems are related to a medical condition, treating it can eliminate the bad breath. For issues related to lifestyle, diet or other problems, eliminating the offending habit or practice is important. Sometimes, your dentist may advise that you start regularly using a prescription mouth rinse designed to help stimulate saliva production. This will help you combat the bacteria growth and odors that come along. In extreme cases, you might even be prescribed specific toothpaste and other oral care products designed to help you...

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Stains On Your Dental Implants? Here’s What You’ll Want To Know

Posted by on May 13, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Stains On Your Dental Implants? Here’s What You’ll Want To Know

Dental implants are a great way of not just restoring your smile, but also the confidence to enjoy your favorite foods. Although dental implants are impervious to tooth decay, they’re not entirely invincible. For starters, unsightly stains can still develop on the surface if the implant isn’t cared for properly. The following shows how stains can form on dental implants and what you can do to not only remove those stains, but also prevent them from showing up in the future. How Stains Can Form Unlike your natural teeth, ceramic, porcelain and resin dental implant crowns are highly resistant to staining and long-term discoloration. In fact, one common issue among patients is that their natural teeth darken as they age, making their dental implants stand out from the surrounding natural teeth. Nevertheless, there are a couple of situations where stains can appear on your dental implants. Stains can occur when the glazed finish on the implants wears down, usually through constant contact with abrasive or acidic materials. Polishing your dental implants with abrasive instruments can strip away this protective finish, leaving behind a rough surface that’s vulnerable to staining. Likewise, acid fluoride treatments can also remove glazed finishes and make dental implant surfaces more prone to stains. It’s not just damaged dental implants that are susceptible to discoloration. The bonding material that holds your dental implant in place can also change color over time, resulting in visible stains along the gum line. How to Remove Stains Your dentist may be able to correct the damage done to your dental implants through careful polishing with a rubber cup and a non-abrasive paste. Professional polishing can also help remove gum line stains caused by the bonding material. You can also choose to have veneers installed over your dental implants. Like the implants themselves, the porcelain veneers are extremely resistant to stains and discoloration, plus they can be matched to the shade of your natural teeth. Ordinary whitening treatments meant for natural teeth won’t work on dental implants. If you do decide to have your natural teeth whitened, it’s best to have that taken care of before having the implant done. This way, your dentist will be able to better match the implant to your natural teeth’s new shade. Tips for Preventing Dental Implant Stains When it comes to protecting the look and functionality of your dental implants, prevention is the best policy. There are several preventative steps you can take to keep your smile vibrant and healthy: Avoid smoking and chewing tobacco. Not only can these bad habits affect the health of your natural teeth, but the nicotine and other compounds found in tobacco can leave behind stains on your dental implants. Stay away from highly-abrasive toothpastes. Your dentist may recommend a non-abrasive toothpaste that’s safe to use on dental implants. Keep your consumption of teeth-staining foods to a minimum. Certain foods and drinks, such as red wine, coffee, tea, blackberries and pomegranates, contain tannins that can contribute heavily towards teeth staining. Starchy foods and acidic beverages like sodas can also leave behind stains. If you do consume teeth-staining foods, don’t forget to brush and rinse. A thorough brushing after consuming teeth-staining foods can help reduce the possible appearance of stains. Likewise, a quick rinse of your mouth with pure water...

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Need Some Zzzz? Understanding And Treating Sleep Apnea

Posted by on Apr 6, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Need Some Zzzz? Understanding And Treating Sleep Apnea

Sleep is an imperative part of your physical and emotional well-being, but certain disorders may reduce your ability to get a sufficient amount of rest. Considering sleep apnea affects an estimated 18 million Americans, understanding the signs and treatment options is key to improving your quality of sleep. Using this guide and the help of your doctor and dentist, you can diagnose and treat this common disorder to improve your quality of sleep. Sleep Apnea 101 Patients with sleep apnea experience periodic episodes of breathing loss while asleep. The pauses most likely stem from relaxed muscles in the back of your throat. When these muscles are overly relaxed, your airway narrows, preventing proper breathing. These breathing lapses not only cause you to wake up repeatedly through the night to catch your breath, but the lost oxygen can also lead to hypertension, heart disease, and depression. Unfortunately, determining the root cause of your sleep apnea can be difficult, since every patient is different. However, certain factors increase your risk of developing this serious disorder Excessive Weight/Neck Size – If you are overweight or obese, you may have an excessive amount of fat deposits around your airway. This increases your risk of developing sleep apnea. Even individuals who are at a healthy weight but have a larger neck circumference may suffer with the disorder. Genetics – You are more likely to have sleep apnea if you have family members who suffer with the condition. Alcohol/Tobacco Use – Alcohol is a sedative, which can relax the muscles of your throat. Also, smoking increases inflammation and swelling of the airway, which puts you more at risk for breathing lapses while sleeping. Nasal Issues – If you suffer with allergies or other conditions that can cause nasal issues, you will have a more difficult time breathing while asleep. Symptoms of Sleep Apnea Waking up through the night to catch your breath is an obvious symptom of sleep apnea. However, you may experience other symptoms including the following: Loud Snoring Dry Mouth or Sore Throat after Waking Headache after Waking Fatigue Difficulty Concentrating Irritability and Mood Changes If you are experiencing the above symptoms, your doctor will ask you to participate in a sleep study to monitor your breathing while asleep. Most of these studies are conducted overnight, so you will need to sleep at a hospital or testing center for one night. Treatment Options In most cases, your doctor will suggest continuous positive airway pressure, or CPAP, therapy to treat your sleep apnea. This common form of treatment utilizes a machine to provide you with a continuous flow of air directly into your airway through a nasal, mouth, or full facial mask. While effective for opening up the airway with forced air, CPAP machines can be challenging to wear while trying to sleep. However, most people will adjust, since it will improve the quality of your sleep eventually. Visiting your dentist is also a smart option for treating your sleep apnea with OAT, or Oral Appliance Therapy. After an initial consultation, your dentist will provide a customized plastic mouth guard, which is similar to the one worn by sport’s payers. Wearing the appliance will ensure your airway remains open while sleeping, since it prevents the tongue and tissues in the back of the mouth...

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How Does Methamphetamine Use Destroy Teeth?

Posted by on Mar 24, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How Does Methamphetamine Use Destroy Teeth?

Methamphetamine is a dangerous and highly addictive drug. While it has numerous negative effects on the body and on health, one of the most notable and long-lasting is its effects on dental health. On one study of meth users, 96% had cavities, 58% had untreated tooth decay, and 31% had six or more missing teeth. If you are considering trying methamphetamine or have been using meth and are looking for inspiration to quit, learning more about how meth destroys your teeth might give you the gumption you need to stay away from this horrendous substance. Here’s a closer look at five specific ways in which methamphetamine use ruins mouths. Acid Erosion Most tooth decay arises as a result of the acids released by oral bacteria. Meth causes decay in a similar manner, but even more quickly. Meth is very acidic. Some dentists have compared smoking meth to gargling with battery acid! It literally erodes the teeth from the outside in. The damage that results can quickly reach the point that it’s irreparable with standard fillings and crowns, so the teeth must be removed. Dry Mouth Especially when it is smoked, meth can dry the mouth out. Oral bacteria love dry mouth and will thrive in these conditions, making decay and gum disease even worse. When high, most meth users are not conscious that their mouths are dry, so they don’t make sure they drink enough water to keep their mouths moist. Gritting the Teeth When you’re high on methamphetamine, you are likely to grit your teeth in response to stress. Some users do this more often when they’re coming down from a high and seeking another dose. Grinding and gritting the teeth accelerates the decay caused by acid and bacteria. It can contribute to the “crumbling” that is often seen in the mouths of meth addicts. Addicts often find it impossible to avoid gritting their teeth. They report feeling that their jaws slam shut on their own, leaving them unable to control this action. So, don’t assume that you’ll just get high and remind yourself not to grit your teeth — this strategy won’t work. Lack of Oral Hygiene When all you’re thinking about is getting high and seeking your next fix, you’re not likely to take time out to brush and floss your teeth. Meth users also often crave sugary foods. They may nosh on these sugary foods and then go to bed without brushing their teeth. The sugar exposure and lack of oral hygiene accelerate decay and lead to profound gum disease. The gum disease can quickly progress to the point that it starts breaking down the ligaments that attach the teeth to the jaw bones, which causes them to fall out of the mouth. Meth addicts also often have money struggles, since the drug is so expensive. This, and the embarrassment they develop because they know their teeth are ailing, may keep them from seeing a dentist for regular checkups. Thus, problems are not identified early and tend to be quite severe by the time the patient finally seeks any sort of treatment. Poor Diet A lack of funds and an intense focus on getting high can prevent meth users from following a healthy diet. This will result in deficiencies in various nutrients, such as vitamin...

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6 Foods That Hurt Your Teeth (Some of These Will Surprise You!)

Posted by on Mar 1, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 6 Foods That Hurt Your Teeth (Some of These Will Surprise You!)

When it comes to your dental health, brushing and flossing aren’t enough. You can’t just eat whatever you want and brush it off at bedtime. Some foods will damage your teeth as you chew and others will damage your teeth from the inside of your body. Here are some foods and drinks that should be avoided as much as possible for the health of your teeth. Flavored Coffee Coffee in its most natural form is a healthy choice in moderation, but drinking flavored and sweetened coffee on a regular basis is bad for your teeth. If you are drinking lattes all day long to function, the sugar from the flavoring is eating away your teeth until you brush. Make sure if you do drink flavored coffee, you are drinking water in between cups to wash it away. Dried Fruit Dried fruit is a common healthy food choice these days. People are dehydrating their own fruit or buying packs of it from the store. Dehydrated fruit works well as a snack because it can be eaten easily on the go and doesn’t go bad as quickly as fresh fruit. The problem is that it’s sugary and sticky, and sticky foods are some of the worst things for your teeth. Small pieces of it will stick to your teeth all day long until you brush your teeth. Soda Soda is one of the worst things you can drink. It’s not only sugary, it’s acidic as well. As you sip on your soda throughout the day, the acid eats away at your enamel while the sugar multiplies harmful bacteria that causes cavities. This dynamic duo is a recipe for disaster. If you refuse to give up the soda, make sure you have a cup of water beside it. Sipping on the water throughout the time that you drink your soda will help wash away the sugar and acid. Once you’re completely finished, brush your teeth. Processed Carbs Processed carbs such as bread, pasta, and crackers aren’t good for your teeth. Many people don’t realize that carbs are sugar. As you eat your sandwich or crackers, your saliva is already starting to process it into sugar. Wash down your food with some water if you can’t brush your teeth right after lunch. If you eat sandwiches on a daily basis, try swapping them out with a salad a few times a week. Alcohol Most people won’t quit drinking alcohol solely because they want healthier teeth, but if you drink a lot of it, you should consider cutting back. Your saliva dilutes the acids and plaque in foods while you eat. However, drinking alcohol will dry out your mouth, which lowers your saliva production. The alcohol will eat away at your enamel while you have only a small amount of saliva to try and defend against the intruder. Drink a full glass of water between alcoholic drinks. It will help with your hangover and rinse your teeth. Ice Some people love to chew on ice. If you’re hot and want an ice cube in your mouth to cool off, don’t chew it. You might as well chew on a rock. One problem is that your mouth is warm and the ice is below freezing. Have you ever taken a hot glass out of the dishwasher...

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The 101 On Gingivitis: Signs And Treatment Options For This Early Form Of Gum Disease

Posted by on Jan 11, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on The 101 On Gingivitis: Signs And Treatment Options For This Early Form Of Gum Disease

Diet, exercise, and regular checkups are imperative for your healthy lifestyle, but certain tasks are necessary to protect your oral health. While an annual dental exam is smart, proper brushing and preventative measures are essential to protect the look and underlying health of your mouth, teeth, and gums. Considering an estimated 47.2 percent of adults 30 years old or older have some form of periodontal disease, learning the early signs of this condition will prevent serious damage to your gums and teeth. Using this guide on gingivitis, you will understand the symptoms of this early form of gum disease and learn the best options for treatment. The 101 on Gingivitis Even though you brush properly, food, plaque, and bacteria can quickly build up on your teeth and gums. This buildup spreads over time, creating a heavy residue on the surface of your teeth and gums. Known as gingivitis, this early stage of gum disease can cause the following symptoms: Light Bleeding During and After Brushing Tender Gums Swollen Gums Foul Breath Unappealing Taste in Mouth Decreased Gum Line – Gums recede from teeth, possibly exposing roots Treating gingivitis is key to stopping the progression of gum disease. Without treatment, you may suffer with decay, tooth loss, infections, and pain. Treating Gingivitis Dentists will most likely recommend a detailed cleaning of your teeth to remove the stubborn plaque buildup. However, you will need to perform regular tasks at home to keep your teeth and gums free from plaque and bacteria. While obvious to many, brushing your teeth twice a day, for two minutes at a time, should be a priority. Do not use a hard-bristled tooth brush as this may be scratch or erode your tooth enamel. For the best results, use a soft-bristled brush. Hold the toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to your gums and begin brushing using back and forth motions. Be sure to brush under, over, and on the sides of your teeth and tongue before rinsing with lukewarm water. In most cases, your dentist has told you the importance of flossing, but this simple act is crucial to protect your teeth from gingivitis. To remove leftover food particles and bacteria from in between your teeth, floss daily. Home Remedies for Gingivitis Professional cleanings along with proper brushing and flossing at home are effective for treating and preventing gingivitis, but you can also use natural remedies to treat this early form of gum disease. If you are currently dealing with gingivitis, consider one or more of the following home remedies: Salt – The antiseptic and antiviral properties of salt eat through plaque while killing bacteria on your teeth and gums. Add ½ teaspoon of regular table salt to an 8-ounce glass of lukewarm water. Mix before rinsing your mouth with the solution each day and night to reduce the symptoms of gum disease. Coconut Oil – Oil pulling was used in ancient times to treat a variety of medical conditions, but it is also an effective treatment for your gingivitis. To get started, add a tablespoon of coconut oil to your mouth and swish it around for 10 to 15 minutes. Use swishing motions to “pull” food, bacteria, and plaque away from your teeth and gums. After the time, spit the oil into a trash bin and...

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Taking A Bite Out Of Tooth Pain: Banish Pain From Sensitive Teeth

Posted by on Aug 17, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Taking A Bite Out Of Tooth Pain: Banish Pain From Sensitive Teeth

If you experience a sharp pain when you eat or drink hot or cold foods, you could be suffering from sensitive teeth. Sensitive teeth is a common problem that affects an estimated one in eight American adults. While it can be a sign of a serious dental problem, in many instances the problem occurs when the dentine is exposed due to receding gums or enamel erosion. While you should seek the advise of your dentist any time you experience pain from your teeth or the surrounding gums, you can often treat sensitive teeth safely at home. What Causes Sensitive Teeth? The roots of your teeth contain tiny tubules that carry feeling to the nerves of your teeth. Under normal circumstances this area is covered by your gums. When your gums recede, this area is exposed. In some instances, the erosion of enamel exposes the tubules. Enamel erosion can occur from using teeth whitening products or brushing vigorously with a medium or hard bristle toothbrush. When hot or cold foods and drinks, sugary foods, or acidic foods contact the exposed tubules, you experience pain. You may also experience temporary tooth sensitivity after dental work, such as scaling. Talk to your dentist if the problem persists. Can You Cure Sensitive Teeth? Grafting the gums to cover the roots of the teeth can correct sensitive teeth, but only your dentist can decide if this is an option for you. Typically, mild tooth sensitivity is treated by using special toothpaste designed to eliminate the pain of sensitive teeth. How Does Toothpaste for Sensitive Teeth Work? There are two basic types of toothpaste deigned for sensitive teeth; those that numb the pain from sensitive teeth and those that block the tubules that lead to the nerve of the tooth. Pain Numbing Toothpaste: Toothpaste designed to numb the pain typically contains potassium nitrate to soothe the nerves in your teeth. This toothpaste must be used regularly to produce the desired effects. The effects are generally short-term and pain may return within a day or two of stopping the use of the toothpaste. Repairing Toothpaste: This toothpaste may be sold as a repair and protect or a repairing toothpaste. It contains calcium sodium phosphosilicate bioactive glass. This compound reacts with the saliva in your mouth to form calcium phosphate that blocks the tubules and coats the tooth. This prevents the pain message from reaching the nerve of your tooth and prevents sensitive teeth. Repairing toothpaste has a longer residual effect than pain numbing toothpaste. How Long Will I Need to Use Toothpaste for Sensitive Teeth? If you are suffering from sensitivity as the result of dental work, such a scaling or veneer work, you will only need to use the toothpaste for sensitive teeth until your mouth has healed completely. However, if your sensitive teeth are due to receding gums or exposed dentine that your dentist determines is minor and does not require further dental work, you may need to use toothpaste for sensitive teeth for the rest of your life. Fortunately, there are many formulas available in a variety of flavors. What Else Can I do to Prevent Sensitive Teeth? Good oral hygiene is important. Visiting your dentist regularly, brushing at least twice a day with a soft-bristled brush, and rinsing your mouth with water...

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What You Should Know About Treatments For Your Periodontitis

Posted by on Aug 4, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on What You Should Know About Treatments For Your Periodontitis

Gum disease is a common dental disease. In the early stages, it is a reversible condition, but if it progresses to periodontitis, there is no cure. If you have periodontitis, however, there are many treatments available to help improve the disease and treat many of the symptoms. Check out these five common treatments for periodontitis. Deep Cleanings Help Reduce Bacteria and Inflammation Tartar, plaque and bacteria irritate your gums, which causes inflammation. If you have periodontitis, you need professional deep dental cleanings, which include scaling and root planing. Scaling and root planing are special procedures that treat teeth below the gum line. With healthy gums, you don’t need to worry about cleaning below the gum line because your gums are flush against your teeth, preventing debris from collecting. People with periodontitis, however, have pockets or gaps between the teeth and gums. This is a perfect spot for bacteria and plaque to hide. Scaling refers to actually removing the plaque and tartar. Root planing is a process that smooths rough patches on the teeth. Flap Surgery Reduces Pockets As long as you continue to have pockets, your teeth will continue to hoard bacteria and plaque, and it’s difficult to clean those pockets at home. Flap surgery is a procedure designed to remove or reduce the size of the gaps. The dentist uses a scalpel to surgically remove your gums from your teeth. While the roots are exposed, a deep cleaning is performed to eliminate any plaque or tartar. Once the area is clean, your gums are put back, but the dentist ensures they are flush against the teeth to remove or reduce any pockets. Soft Tissue Grafts Replace Lost Gum Tissue Gum disease can actually destroy gum tissue. As more and more tissue is destroyed, your tooth roots become exposed. Not only does this make your teeth look longer, but it also increases the chance of severe decay. Normally, the part of the tooth you see is protected by enamel, but tooth roots don’t have enamel, which means they are more susceptible to plaque, tartar and bacteria. A soft tissue graft allows the dentist to use gum tissue from another part of your mouth to cover and protect these exposed roots.  Bone Grafts Replace Lost Bone Tissue Gum disease doesn’t just destroy gum tissue. It destroys bone tissue too. When left untreated, the gum disease causes your jawbone to lose density, which causes your teeth to become loose. Like a soft tissue graft, a bone graft uses bone from another part of your body to strengthen the jawbone again. Sometimes, the bone is taken from another part of your mouth, but if the dentist needs a lot of bone, it may need to come from another part of your body, such as your hip. In other cases, the dentist may use synthetic bone or bone from a cadaver for the bone graft. Antibacterial Medications May Be Necessary Antibacterial medications are a great way to help reduce the amount of bacteria in your mouth to prevent inflammation. When you get flap surgery or scaling and root planing, it is common for the dentist to apply an antibiotic gel or chips directly in your gums. In other cases, the dentist may prescribe an antimicrobial mouthwash, which you use in place of your...

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