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Top 3 Reasons have your Teeth Straightened

Do crowded or crooked make you self-conscious about your appearance? If you have always wanted to straighten your teeth years, but you are still sitting on the fence, here are the most important benefits of straightening your smile, from improving your looks to your long-term oral health.

Straighter Teeth are Healthy

All of us know that straight teeth look great, but did you know they are healthier too? Crooked and crowded teeth can be extremely difficult to brush. Tooth surfaces, left uncleaned, can result in plaque which can cause cavities, gum disease, and other dental problems.

Properly aligned teeth can be easily brushed and flossed, helping you avoid several dental problems.

Straighter Teeth Work Better

Teeth straightening is more than just improving your looks. They are essential to be able to properly speak and eat. Misaligned teeth can these activities uncomfortable and awkward. Crooked teeth may develop sharp edges that irritate the soft tissues, or even prevent you from making certain speech sounds. In some people, this can erode a person’s self-esteem.

Straighter Teeth Makes Others Feel Better About You

Having straighter teeth will not only help you feel better about yourself, but it also tends to improve other people’s impression of you. Research has shown that people with straight teeth and a beautiful smile tend to be seen as not only more attractive but also more intelligent and professional. This can impact success in both personal and business relationships.

 

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4-Step Oral Health Guide for Easter

It is Easter time! And what is Easter without CHOCOLATE? Unfortunately, chocolate (because of the sugar it contains) can mean bad news for your teeth and oral health. How you and your children manage the increased intake of sugary products is very important.

Here’s a 4-Step guide to keep Easter a happy holiday without letting your children’s teeth suffer.

Limit chocolate and other sweet treats to meal times

Children may be tempted to have chocolate every few hours but this is not good for their teeth. Every time you eat anything sweet, teeth are under acid attack for almost an hour. Having a sweet and sugary treat every few hours keeps the teeth under constant acid attack. This can certainly cause tooth decay.

The best way out is to limit the amount of chocolate children eat, maybe just one small Easter egg and minimize the frequency of chocolate eating. Rather than constant snacking, keeping chocolate limited to meal times reduce the frequency of teeth coming into contact with sugar.

Select low-sugar chocolate alternatives

Choose sugar-free and low-sugar chocolates to reduce exposure and damage to teeth. Any ingredients that end in ‘ose’ show that the product contains sugar.

Offer Healthy Snack Options

Good oral health begins with a diet rich in vitamins, minerals and that can come from fresh fruit and vegetables. Help your children develop a taste for these instead of simply sweets and chocolate.

Stop chocolate an hour before bed

Sugary foods erode the enamel on the teeth. Brushing directly after eating can cause more damage by brushing away the weakened surface. Allow your children’s teeth time to recover and then allow them to brush right before they go to sleep.

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How Important are Dental implants?

A dental implant is a small yet extremely strong, screw made up of a titanium alloy. It is used to replace damaged or missing natural teeth. The implant is placed surgically by drilling into the jawbone. The screw firmly connects the artificial teeth to the jaw.

Implants are commonly used to replace missing teeth but they can also be used to provide support to removable dentures.

Here is a look at why dental implants are important for many people.

Appearance

Even one missing tooth can make a person extremely self-conscious about appearance as well as affect the confidence. This, in turn, may affect your work and personal life. There is no difference, in appearance, between a tooth with a dental implant and a natural one. So, dental implants can help to boost the patient’s overall confidence.

Oral Health

Losing a tooth disturbs the balance in the dental structure. The gap left by a tooth may cause neighboring teeth to shift. This could lead to further oral problems, such as bone loss. Dental implants can solve this problem.

Comfort

A single hard bit of food coming in-between an exposed molar root and the neighboring tooth can be uncomfortable, even painful. Losing your ability to properly chew can prevent you from enjoying food. Dental implant can change that.

However, it is important that the procedure is carried out by a skilled and experienced dental implant expert. The good news is that dental implants have a success rate over 95%.

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Teeth Whitening Treatments – In Office or DIY?

Who doesn’t want to have white, shiny, perfect teeth? White teeth are considered a sign of well-being and even lend you an image of good social standing. Most people feel more confident with a flawless smile. Regardless of the reason, the trend is here to stay.

Teeth Whitening Options

Since white teeth are so sought after, plenty of teeth whitening treatment options are available. While there are a lot of DIY treatments out there, incorrect or excessive use can damage your teeth. The best option is to go for an in-office tooth whitening treatment. If you would not entrust treatment of your body to an over-the-counter treatment, why would you do so for your teeth?

Here is a look at common teeth whitening options.

Over-the-counter Whitening Kits

DIY or over-the-counter kits come in different kinds –

·         Teeth Whitening Toothpastes

Some toothpastes promise instant whitening. Teeth whitening toothpastes may work if you already have shiny teeth but they are unable to remove already deposited plaque from your teeth.

·         Chewing gum

Some chewing gums claim to whiten the teeth by coating the outer surface of the teeth to prevent staining.

·         Dental strips

Dental whitening strips contain peroxide. They are left in the mouth for 30 minutes. Usage for more than the recommended period can prove hazardous.

In-office dental whitening treatment

This is an ideal tooth whitening treatment option. In-office dental whitening treatment from your family dentist, Dr. Nick in Rogers, AR, takes less than an hour. This is a non-invasive procedure and is definitely better than any over-the-counter treatment.

A protective coating is applied on your lips and gums. A whitening solution is then applied to your teeth. An ultraviolet lamp may be used, depending upon the treatment, to activate the ingredients in the solution.

Professional teeth whitening treatment by your dentist brings many advantages. You get expected results after the treatment. Your dentist would ensure that there is no danger of overexposure and you do not have to repeat treatments.

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4 Common Oral Health Issues among Seniors

Oral health is an important component of your overall well-being. Unfortunately, it is a commonly overlooked aspect of senior health.

Here are 4 common oral health issues seniors face and ways to prevent them.

Cavities

Tooth decay is common among people aged 65 years or more. Majority of seniors in this age group have had dental caries. Seniors may not visit the dentist as often as once did and this can make the caries go undetected and become worse. Regular dentist visits can make your cavities get treated early.

Eating Issues

Problems, such as missing teeth, cavities, ill-fit dentures, gum disease, and other issues can cause difficulty in eating. This may further cause seniors to move to a diet which may not be always healthy.

Dry mouth

Dry mouth is a common issue for many seniors. Saliva prevents tooth decay and many seniors suffer from a reduced flow of saliva, which may be the result of medication for chronic conditions. To avoid a dry mouth, it is best to drink lots of fluids and reduce caffeine and alcohol consumption.

Gum Disease

Gum or Periodontal disease causes gums and surrounding tissues to become sore and results in pain when chewing. This may result due to poor brushing and flossing habits.  It is important to see a dentist regularly who can help you combat these conditions early before they worsen and impact your quality of life.

 

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Is Tooth Extraction Necessary?

There are times when tooth extraction is absolutely necessary. If you have been advised a tooth extraction, but are still sitting on the fence about it, read on.

Tooth extraction is done only as a last resort. Here are situations where tooth extraction becomes unavoidable.

  • When a tooth is in severe decay. When a cavity is left untreated, in the early stages, it can spread and damage the entire tooth, including the inner layers.
  • An extremely damaged tooth can also be the result of chipping or breaking your tooth during sports or other high-contact activities. It could also result from a blow to the face while biking, skateboarding, and other activities.
  • Unhealthy wisdom teeth can cause issues when they erupt from the gums. Your dentist may have to remove them.
  • Sometimes, you don’t have enough space in your mouth. For example, when you are aligning your smile or erupting more teeth, the teeth may not get enough space to shift and move.

In any of the above situations, or cases where the tooth has undergone severe damage, a tooth extraction may be the only solution. This is why, leading dentists, such as Dr. Nick in Fayetteville, AR, strongly advise you to schedule a comprehensive examination regularly to avoid any chances of an extreme situation, such as a damaged tooth, in the future.

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3 Solutions for a Broken Tooth

Chipping a tooth is not an uncommon phenomenon. Constant wear and tear can weaken and damage the enamel. An accident or some hard food can also chip a tooth. Regardless of the cause, there are several options to repair a chipped or broken tooth.

PORCELAIN VENEERS

Porcelain veneers are a great option for repairing the front teeth. Veneers are like thin shells of porcelain that can be used to cover the front of the teeth while a thick section can fill the chipped portion of the tooth.

You can choose a single veneer to repair a chip on a single tooth or you may choose veneers for all front teeth for a total restoration. You may need only two office visits to get veneers. Porcelain veneers can –

  • repair chipped teeth
  • disguise gaps
  • correct crooked or stained teeth
  • improve your bite
  • total smile restoration

In the first visit, the surface layer of the teeth is removed. The teeth are color-matched, and molds are taken to make the veneers. Temporary veneers are placed. During the second visit, temporary veneers are removed and the permanent ones are adhered with cement that is made permanent with UV light.

DENTAL BONDING

The treatment for a chipped tooth depends upon the extent of the damage and the visibility of the chip when you smile. If only a small amount of the enamel is missing or if the chip is on the front teeth, dental bonding can also repair the damage. This procedure requires only a single office visit.

Dental bonding is also referred to as a “filling,” since it fills the missing enamel with tooth-like composite resin. This is a fast and painless procedure that does not require any numbing medication. The chipped area is etched to make the bonding material hold properly. An adhesive is applied, followed by the composite resin. The resin is shaped to blend with the natural tooth and restore its shape. UV light hardens the material to complete the procedure.

CROWNS

Crowns are recommended when –

  • the chips are large
  • the teeth that have significant decay
  • the molar teeth are chipped

A crown is a tooth-shaped cap made of metal, porcelain fused to metal, resin, or ceramic. They are used to cover the tooth root.

Mercury Safe Dentist
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Why is it Vital to find a Mercury Safe Dentist?

Whenever you are looking for a good doctor, you want to have someone who is skilled and experienced at what they do. In addition, you also want them to be using safe practices in their treatments, don’t you?

When it comes to dentistry, one of the safest choices dentists can make while treating patients is to use mercury-safe (amalgam free) fillings.

Mercury-Safe Dentistry

Traditionally, for tooth decay treatment, dentists use a silver filling known as amalgam. The decay is removed and the gap is filled with amalgam which is essentially mercury that is melted and applied into the gap.

The vapor released during this process is hazardous for the patient as well as others in the treatment room. This can also create problems related to mercury toxicity.

The mercury-free or mercury-safe dentistry doesn’t use silver amalgam filling, rather uses a composite filling for tooth decay. This composite filling eliminates the risk of mercury toxicity and is better for the overall health of the patient.

Benefits of Mercury-Safe Dentistry

  • Less Invasive

Compared to traditional amalgam fillings, mercury-safe fillings are less invasive. Amalgam fillings are known to damage healthy tooth tissues, tooth structure and may even fracture the tooth. But the composite fillings not only preserve the tooth structure, but also strengthen the roots of the teeth.

  • Last Long

Mercury-safe fillings last as long as or even longer than amalgam fillings. Composite fillings have been found to work better and longer against primary tooth decay in children.

  • Requires Same Time

Mercury- safe fillings do not take longer than amalgam fillings to place.

  • More Effective

Mercury- safe fillings can help prevent carries which amalgam fillings don’t. composite fillings also help in preventive measures like adjacent pits’ sealing.

  • Easy to Repair

Mercury- safe fillings can be more easily repaired than amalgam. They allow localized repairs during the initial placement.

  • Safer

Mercury-safe fillings are safer than amalgam fillings for healing. They are also safer for the environment.

 

Single Tooth Dental Implants
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Benefits of Single Tooth Dental Implants

Most adults start losing teeth by the time they are seniors. Apart from being a cosmetic issue, a missing or extracted tooth involves many other issues. Those who have lost a tooth or need a tooth extraction soon, single-tooth dental implants are a highly effective replacement option.

Your teeth not only help you eat, but also aid speech. The roots of the teeth run deep into the jaws and skull, stimulating the bone. The absence of a tooth results in an absence of this stimulation and eventually, weakening of bone. This is why missing teeth are followed by facial deformities, tooth decay and gum disease.

Dentures may be able to help with some of these problems, but not all.

Dental Implants

Dental implants are the most popular tooth loss treatment. A titanium rod is anchored into the jaw in the hole left by the natural tooth. A small device, that acts as a “saddle” for the crown, is attached to the top of the rod. Crowns are customized for the patient such that they perfectly match the other natural teeth.

Single-Tooth Dental Implants

The primary reason for the huge popularity of the single-tooth dental is the exceptionally thorough screening process. Your dentist will go through your medical history and examine your gums to rule out any serious oral health issues.

The single-tooth dental implant procedure can typically be performed in around an hour. The implant is anchored into the bone. Once the bone has attached to the implant, the crown is attached to complete the treatment.

With careful aftercare, the crown may last for 15 years or longer but the rod itself should last for the patient’s entire life.

Single-tooth dental implants enable patients to eat, speak and smile with confidence once again.

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Root Canal

Root Canal. If a tooth dies or is dying, it can create a very painful problem. A root canal basically removes the problem which is typically a bacterial infection, allowing the patient to retain a tooth that would otherwise be lost. Typically, root canal success rates hover around the 90% mark as strange anatomy, unusual bacteria and various other factors can complicate the outcome. The pulp, or “nerve” of the tooth can be thought of as a river system leading to the bone, which can be thought of as the ocean. The purpose of a root canal then, would be analogous to cleaning out a river system all the way to the ocean.

 

Final Xray of root canal and CEREC crown on lower molar

 

Root Canal Procedure

After numbing there tooth, a rubber dam and clamp are used to isolate the tooth in the need of therapy, to isolate and prevent contamination.

After isolation with the rubber dam, the canals are identified. This tooth had 3 canals in total which need to be cleaned out and sealed.

Root canal files of increasing diameter are used to traverse all 3 of the canals all the way to the end of the respective roots, basically to bone.

An apex locator is used to electronically measure the difference in resistance between the root and bone tissue. This is used to ensure access all the way down to the end of the root canal.

After widening the canals manually to approximately 0.2 mm in most cases a hand-piece can be used to more effectively drill out the inside of the canal walls, removing remaining nerve tissue and bacteria.

After cleaning and widening all 3 canals sufficiently, a Piezo ultrasonic is used to allow the disinfectants and chelators used in root canal therapy to more efficiently remove vestiges of tissue and bacteria, even in the “feeder creeks” of the “main river” that is the root canal.

Then, all 3 canals are dried using sterile paper points.

A rubber-like material called gutta percha of the appropriate size and shape is then selected to seal off and fill the root canal spaces. A paste sealer (the mortar) is applied to each of the gutta percha points(the brick) as they are used to obturate (fill) the root canal spaces.

Pressure and heat are applied to hydraulically plug all 3 canals.

The root canal therapy is now complete, an hour has elapsed, and most importantly the patient is now “out of Pain.”

 

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