What You Need To Know About Crown Lengthening

crown lengthening infographic

 

How Crown Lengthening Can Help Your Smile

If you’re suffering from discolored, sensitive, or broken teeth, you might feel a little self-conscious about your smile. However, thanks to crown lengthening, your natural smile can instantly be brought back and given a beautiful look. This article will explain more what crown lengthening is and how it can improve your smile.

What is Crown Lengthening?

Crown lengthening is a special dental procedure that requires a dentist to remove part of your gum to help expose more of your tooth. This surgery is done to help correct a problematic tooth so it can be topped with a crown to help strengthen it. This procedure is usually recommended for people who have broken, uneven, or rotting teeth.

How a Crown Lengthening Procedure is Done

The first step to a crown lengthening procedure is to get the area inspected by a dentist so they can see what needs to be done. Then, after cleaning and sanitizing your mouth, you will be put under a light anesthesia so there’s no pain when the procedure is done. The dentist will then use special tools to help remove part of the gum so more of the tooth can be exposed and then place a crown on top of that tooth.

After the surgery is done, it will take a few months for results to start to show. You might also feel a little bit of sensitivity and swelling, but this is normal as your mouth is trying to adapt to the procedure.

Things to Keep in Mind

After a crown lengthening procedure is completed you might start to experience a little bit of discomfort. This is completely normal and you might have a bit of swelling which can be calmed with an ice bag. Eventually, the area operated on will heal and any discomfort will cease.

Another important thing to keep in mind is that infections are very common after this operation. Because of this, you’ll want to pay close attention to the operated area and ensure that you keep your dentist up-to-date on your recovery so they can alert you if any problems might be evident.

The Benefits of Crown Lengthening

While this is a very intricate procedure that has a few side effects, crown lengthening also has quite a few benefits. One is that this surgery only has to be done once which means you don’t need to keep going back to the dentist for more treatments or operations. The surgery is also very quick and lasts no more than an hour so you won’t be under anesthesia for a long time. Crown lengthening also helps to give your smile a more even look which can help to improve it. In addition to all this, it can also help to improve oral health because it prevents harmful bacteria from spreading in your mouth due to rotting teeth.

 

Crown lengthening is a surgery that can help to fix many dental problems so you can have a symmetrical and more beautiful smile. While it requires you to go through surgery, it’s a simple procedure that can give you amazing results.

New Dental Tech – Panoramic X-Rays

Panoramic X-Ray

 

Panoramic x-rays take a full panorama of your teeth, wrapping around your head so that the dentist can see every angle of your teeth, jaw, and gums. This gives the dentist insight into whether there are any wisdom teeth developing, any early cavities, and any bone loss or fractures. Although many of us do not like having an x-ray because of the taste and feeling of the film that has to be placed in their mouth, panoramic x-rays do not need this because the film is in the machine. If your dentist has recommended that you receive a digital x-ray, it may be because they want to understand TMJ progression, spot an impacted tooth, look for a cyst, diagnose a gag reflex, start to plan for braces or dentures, or even look for gum disease.

The panoramic x-ray is performed by a rotating arm, and this is the part that has the film inside it which creates the x-ray itself. Most of the time, the patient will stand normally and allow the arm to move around it slowly. It is obviously very important that the patient does not move at all – not even their teeth! If they do so, then the image will be completely blurred, and not only will the image by useless, but it will have to be done again.

Now that the dentist has a full and clear image of what is going on in your head, they will be able to zoom in and look at any problem spots in more detail. They should be able to diagnose a few things just from the panoramic x-ray that has been created, and as they use a smaller amount of radiation than the traditional type of x-ray, they are much better and safer for the patient.

Implant Supported Dentures 101

dentures infographic

 

Dentures Supported by Implants

Implant supported dentures are a type of denture which is attached to implants for support. They have special attachments which fit onto the implants and allow removal for maintenance.

Dental health care is of core concern to everyone. As one gets older, it is one of the many health concerns that arise. Dental care necessitating implant supported dentures may also arise as a result of dental disorders which necessitate teeth replacement. One has an option to either opt for dental dentures or porcelain teeth. However, implant dentures are preferable over porcelain teeth since they offer a better cosmetic effect especially for patients whose bone and gum have shrunk away. They are also easier to maintain and clean compared to porcelain teeth. Implant supported dentures also are cheaper than porcelain bridges and crowns. Implant dentures are suitable for all people provided they are non-smokers.

How they work

There are two types of implant supported dentures which include ball retained or stud attachment dentures and bar retained dentures. Acrylic bases are used to make the dentures since they can easily be mixed to achieve the same color as that of the gum. Afterwards, the new teeth are fitted on to the base. Ball-retained dentures are more common compared to bar retained dentures due to their cost-effectiveness and simplicity.

On the other hand, bar retained dentures employ a metallic bar which is fitted onto the jawbone lining. Attachments such as clips are fitted on to the bar or the denture and at times both. The dentures are fitted over the bar and clipped into place by the attached clips. For ball retained dentures, implants on the jaw bone hold a mental attachment where other denture attachments are fitted. They function like a press-stud mechanism which hold the dentures firmly in the mouth but allow removal for maintenance purposes.

Implant supported denture processes

The initial process involves a health review of the patient’s health and dental records. X-rays are taken in order to model the new dentine and get an impression of the gum and teeth. The front of the gum is often preferred for attachment of implant since the jawbone takes longer before it is eaten up. The process involves two surgeries that may span slightly over a year for the complete treatment.

During the first surgical procedure, implants are fitted beneath the gum onto the jaw bone which is then left to heal. The second procedure involves the placement of abutment on the implant so that they appear over the gum. After the first surgery, a period of three months is allowed before further treatment if the treatment was done on the lower jaw. Six months are observed after the upper jaw is treated. After the surgeries are complete and the jaw is fully healed, a reline on your gum is done to minimize the pressure excreted on the gum. Finally, press studs are placed in the implants, and new dentures are fitted. Besides the advanced technology applied for implant supported dentures, they require expertise to avoid ill-fitting dentures.

Getting Back To Basics – Brushing & Flossing Techniques

flossing

Without proper brushing and flossing, you cannot hope to enjoy good oral health. Your dentist will be able to offer professional cleaning, but it is daily routine that will keep your teeth in the best of health, keeping your smile white, and your mouth disease free. Tooth decay and disease are much more likely for people who do not brush often, and halitosis or bad breath is commonly reported by those who do not take the time to brush twice a day. Furthermore, flossing contributes to this good hygiene and prevents staining on your teeth from drinking tea, coffee, and smoking.

You should be brushing after breakfast, and just before bed, with a toothbrush that is soft on the gums as they need just as much care and attention. Every part of your tooth should be brushed, so you may want to get a toothbrush with a small head that can easily reach all of your mouth, and it should be replaced every three months. An electric toothbrush is often much more effective than a regular manual brush because of its consistency and force, and so the American Dental Association has recommended it over the manual brush.

Although many of us are quite comfortable with how and why we should be brushing our teeth, flossing on the other hand is something that many of us avoid. As flossing can remove food, plaque, and bacteria from around the gumline, however, it is absolutely vital that you do not. You do not need to worry about the flavor or type of floss that you choose, as long as you are working the floss between each of your teeth at an angle so that it can reach right into the gumline. Carefully remove any debris from your mouth, and then rinse.

Pocket Reduction Surgery Simplified

pocket reduction surgery

 

Pocket Reduction Procedure

In case gum disease is allowed to develop for an extended period of time without instituting any intervention the bacteria will eventually digest the gums and begin to leave small pockets. Most dental patients suffering gum disease don’t realize they suffer this condition in the first place. The pockets left are at first too tiny for the naked eye to see. Eventually the pockets grow to become too large therefore allowing food particles to get stuck inside. The stuck food rots causing a bad stench, bacterial infection, and tooth decay. These circumstances catalyze gum disease eventually leading to decay of the teeth and eventual falling out of teeth.

This can be prevented easily by vigilantly checking for indicators of gum disease. In case you are too late in identifying the indicators, you may as well get remedial treatment through a pocket reduction surgical procedure.

Whenever a dentist suggests a pocket reduction procedure they often will take you through an x-ray of the jawline and mouth in order to identify the extent of damage. Some patients prefer to undergo local anesthesia while some prefer general. The surgical procedure is done without requiring patient admission. Although the gum might become sensitive after undertaking the surgical procedure, the patient will notice a big difference soon enough.

What is a pocket reduction procedure?

This is a term used for several distinct surgical procedures done with an objective of accessing the tooth root so as to eliminate tartar and bacteria. The mouth of any human being has different variations of bacteria present at any time. Bacteria contained in plaque are responsible for producing acids which cause the tooth surface to demineralize. These acids will eventually contribute to the contraction of periodontal disease.

Periodontal infections are known to cause chronic inflammatory responses inside the body. This inflammatory response literally obliterates gum tissues and bones upon invading the sub gingival region. Gum pockets will be formed and they become deeper between teeth and gums through the process of destruction of tissue. Periodontal disease progressively affects the mouth, and, if untreated, it could result in massive colonization of bacteria in the gum pockets hence leading to the falling out of teeth. A surgical procedure for pocket reduction is aimed at alleviating the destructive cycle and reducing the deepening of the pockets harboring bacteria.

Why undertake a pocket reduction surgical procedure?

This procedure has a proven record of effectively eliminating bacteria, alleviating inflammation, and protecting the teeth. The objective of this procedure is:

Preventing bone loss: The response causing chronic inflammation due to oral bacteria causes the body to eat up bone tissue. Through the process of bone infection from periodontal disease, teeth anchors get lost. Continued loosening of the teeth may necessitate tooth extraction.

Minimize the spread of bacteria: Oral bacteria are often associated with conditions like stroke, heart disease, and diabetes. Such bacteria have the ability to travel to different body parts through the blood and extend their colonization to other organs. It is therefore important to minimize bacteria so as to alleviate the chances of getting secondary infections.

Enable home care: Through the process of deepening gum pockets, it becomes more intricate for patients to clean their own teeth.  Dental floss and toothbrushes may be unable to get to the deep pockets hence increasing the chances of contracting more infections.

Smile enhancement: Periodontal disease affects the oral cavity therefore making the mouth unattractive. Brown gums, ridge indentation, and rotting teeth are characteristic of gum pockets. The pocket reduction procedure derails further gum disease growth and enhances the aesthetic value of the mouth and smile.

Understanding A Toothache Exam

toothache exam

Just because you have a toothache, that does not mean that you simply have to accept it. A dentist will be able to examine you and talk through the different reasons why your teeth could be hurting, and that way be able to assess what can be done to prevent the pain. Potential culprits include gum disease, wisdom teeth, a cracked tooth, or something in your jaw. Although a toothache will normally present as constant pain, there is also sometimes swelling of the face, gums, and tooth, increased body temperature as its fighting an infection, and saliva that tastes bad for no known reason.

If the pain is so bad that you have to go to an emergency room, then it is time to call an emergency dentist. Over the counter medication simply isn’t enough, but it can be helpful while you wait for your appointment. Cavities are usually the reason for a toothache, but grinding and repetitive motions also can cause discomfort. Only a visit to the dentist will give you the help and support that you need to get rid of the toothache. Sometimes this is through a filling, or in other cases a root canal will be required. In extreme cases, the tooth cannot be saved and it will have to be removed to get rid of the pain.

If there is an infection, antibiotics will probably be prescribed to help your body fight it off, and an x-ray may be performed in order to see exactly what is causing the pain. Other tests may be ordered as necessary, so your dentist can be absolutely sure they know what to do. Although your dentist will be able to help you remove the pain, and treat the underlying cause, there is no way to permanently prevent toothache from ever coming back.

TMJ Treatment 101

TMJ Infographic

 

TMJ Treatment, Causes, and Symptoms

TMJ, also known as Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction, is some category of jawbone problems that often affects much more people than anticipated. According to experts more than ten million Americans suffer the TMJ condition and most of them do not have knowledge of this. The most fundamental TMJ characteristic is pain. This is followed by restrictive movement of the mandibular and some noises from TMJ when the jaws are in motion. Even though this condition is not dangerous it could cause detrimental effects on life quality. This is because the symptoms could become difficult to handle and even chronic.

TMJ can be analyzed as some symptom complex disorder instead of some single condition. The condition is thought to be founded from a number of factors. The factors are, however, not adequately understood. There are differences on the significance of the factors causing TMJ as well. TMJ has a number of treatment options even though there is absence of proof of effectiveness for any of the available treatments. To this date there has not been any universally accepted protocol of TMJ treatment. The common TMJ treatments include occlusal splints provision, pain medication, psychosocial interventions such as cognitive therapy on behavior, etc. Many sources concur that any treatment administered for TMJ should be reversible.

TMJ causes

Living with TMJ can be disturbing and often painful. The sooner a person is diagnosed, the better for them. Each patient has unique needs and the treatment expected will often be a bit different from what others get. The discomfort and pain should diminish with effective treatment. Many dentists believe that TMJ symptoms come from jaw muscle problems or problems with jaw joints themselves. An injury incurred by the neck and head muscles, joints, or jaw such as injury from whiplash or a heavy blow could cause TMJ. Some of the other pronounced causes entail:

  • The clenching and grinding of teeth, which exerts more pressure on joints
  • Disc or cushion movement between jaw joints socket and ball
  • Arthritis found in the joints
  • Stress which often causes tightened jaw and facial muscles or teeth clenching

TMJ symptoms

TMJ regularly causes acute discomfort and pain. The discomforting pain could occur temporarily or remain for a long time. Such pains can affect either side or one of the sides to your face. TMJ is a common problem both with men and women and the problem is often experienced by middle aged people who are aged twenty to forty years. The common symptoms may include:

  • Tenderness or pain inside the face, shoulders, neck, and jaw joints and can extend to the region around the ears during chewing, speaking, or when the mouth is wide open
  • Discomfort when you attempt to open the mouth wide
  • Stuck jaws or locked jaws when the mouth is closed or when opened
  • Grinding, popping, or clicking sounds from the joints of the jaw when opening or closing the mouth or when chewing. Such sounds may or may not be accompanied with pain.
  • Feeling of tiredness in the face
  • Chewing difficulty or an uncomfortable sudden bite or a feeling as though the lower and upper teeth are not quite fitting
  • Swelling on either sides of the face

Some of the other symptoms include headaches, toothaches, dizziness, neck aches, earaches, ringing of the ears, pains in upper shoulder, hearing problems, etc.

New Dental Tech – Digital X-Rays

digital x-ray

Traditional x-rays – the ones that you probably had when you were younger, and the ones that you see on TV – used film in order to take the ‘photographs’ of our insides. Now there is a new modern technology called digital x-rays, which do not need to take photographs and so can be looked at by your dentist only moments after it has been taken. Another great benefit of digital x-rays is that they use around 85% less radiation. As x-rays are a critical tool for diagnosis, digital x-rays are being used more and more by dentists in order to see underneath the surface, and check whether there are any problems that cannot be seen by the naked eye.

Some dental problems do not cause pain until they are quite far along, which means that in many cases, digital x-rays are the first way that a dentist can detect bone loss, tumors, decay, gum problems, abscesses, cysts, and other developmental issues. As these can now be detected much earlier in their development, the dentist can therefore treat them more easily – and with much less pain and financial cost.

Of course, you cannot completely avoid absolutely all radiation exposure – in many ways, it is part of everyday life. On the other hand, digital x-rays are so far reduced when it comes to traditional x-rays and the amount of radiation they create, and even then, dentists will take precautions to protect the patient during the x-ray. You do not automatically need to have a digital x-ray; your dentist will decide that based on your previous history, and any problems that they have spotted in your symptoms or lifestyle. In most cases, a manual exam will tell the dentist whether or not it would be worth the minute amount of radiation to get a better view and use a digital x-ray.

What Are All On Four Dentures?

All on 4 Infographic

 

Permanent / All On Four Dentures: How They Can Help You

If your teeth are giving you immense dental pain, are cracked and rotting, or you are missing some, permanent dentures might be something you should look into using. This article will highlight more behind what they are and how they can help you get back to living pain-free.

What are Permanent Dentures?

Permanent dentures, also known as conventional or non-removable dentures, are a permanent fixture in your mouth to replace any broken or missing teeth.

How Do They Work?

They work and look like regular dentures but have a slightly different twist to them. When you go to have permanent dentures installed, you first need to have all of the necessary teeth removed. This will prevent them from getting in the way of the dentures and ensure they fit you properly. After the necessary teeth have been removed, you then have to wait about 7 weeks or so to let the gum area heal so the dentures don’t cause massive irritation. Once that time is up, a map of your mouth and a measurement of your jawbone will be taken so the dentist can install the correct implants in your mouth. After the implants have been put in, the permanent dentures can be attached to them so they stay put.

The Benefits of Them

There are plenty of benefits that come with using permanent dentures.

They Don’t Slip

Many often don’t like the idea of wearing dentures because of the fear that they might accidentally slip or fall out of their mouth. The great thing about permanent dentures is that you don’t have to worry about this. Because they are securely attached to the implants rather than just slid into the mouth, there’s no need to fear that they’ll suddenly fall out.

It’s Easy to Chew and Talk

Chewing and talking will be easy to do because these dentures are secured to your jawbone. This is unlike regular dentures that only stick to your mouth due to a slight adhesive that often needs to be replaced daily.

They’re Durable

These are made to last, so once you invest in them you can rest assured they won’t break easily. This is because they are made of a sturdy acrylic material to ensure they don’t chip or crack when you wear them.

They can be Customized

Many dentures are often a one-size-fits-all kind of deal. However, with permanent dentures you’ll be able to have a custom fitting for your mouth. This can help to make sure that they fit comfortably in your mouth so they don’t cause discomfort or look unnatural.

You Don’t Need to Remove Them to Clean Them

Probably one of the best things about this type is that they don’t need to be removed in order for you to clean them. This can help add to their durability because they don’t need to soak in a seltzer which can break down the denture materials. You can pretty much brush them off like you would with regular teeth.

Permanent dentures are a great investment to make and can help you to get back to living pain-free and normally. They are affordable and will give you back your natural smile.

New Dental Tech – 3D Scanning

3D scan patients teeth

Dentistry is being made simple with new technologies like the Carestream CS 3500 intraoral scanner. It may sound complicated, but it is a simple device that is used by dentist all the time to help with accurate dental restorations, creating fewer problems and causing less pain for the patient. After all, who likes to have dental impressions made? It’s a messy and uncomfortable process, and this new technology avoids it completely. Even better than that, it’s a carefully designed piece of equipment that is small and nimble, so it doesn’t frighten people who are a little nervous about going to the dentist.

It is so nimble and lightweight, in fact, that the CS 3500 can scan a patient at a depth of 16 mm at almost any angle, taking away the hard work from the dentist and ensuring absolutely accurate scans. Your dentist can focus on you. This technology is also compatible with all of the old technologies, and can scan any previous moulds that have been made of your teeth so that it can compare how previous dental work has been done.

The scanner is also useful to dentists because it is plugged directly into a computer, so all of the data that it collects goes straight to a digital record. There is no paperwork or admin for the dentist to complete. There is a projection screen so that the dentist can focus completely on the patient, and when it is in Feedback mode, it projects two lights to guide the dentist where to go. The projection is even in color! Once the scan using the CS 3500 is complete, the software will create an image of the patient’s mouth in detail, something that the dentist could never have done by eye – and completely without any hassle or pain.