Monday, April 30, 2012

How Often to Whiten Teeth

If you have recently whitened your teeth, learn how often to whiten your teeth from an oral hygienist in this free dental care video.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Parts of the Tooth

Have you ever wondered what makes up a tooth? The two main parts of the tooth are the crown and the root. The crown is the white part of the tooth you can see while the root is unseen below the gumline. Learn more about the various parts of a tooth and how good oral health care as well as regular dental visits, can help to keep your smile healthy and beautiful.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

May You Never Ever Have to Get a Root Canal! But If You Do, This Is Good to Know

I hope for your sake that you never have to get a root canal. As a young man I was playing basketball, going up for a rebound and someone elbowed me in the mouth, breaking my front tooth in half. Besides severe pain and agony, what followed was a procedure that a dentist untertook on my mouth known as a root canal. He saved part of my tooth and the nerve, and then covered it all with a crown. You can hardly tell anything ever happened.
Every tooth has a space or spaces inside the tooth (known as the pulp chamber) which goes through the centre of the tooth right down to the tip of the root. This is known as the root canal. The number of canals in individual teeth can vary from two to four in molars to one in incisors.
If there's pain in the tooth then there's a problem, and this can be caused by an abscess, an infection, decay or a trauma to the tooth which may have become chipped or broken exposing the nerve. In many of these cases your dentist will carry out root canal surgery to cure the problem.
If there is an infection present or there's an abscess the dentist will prescribe antibiotics before carrying out the root canal work. He or she will then arrange the necessary appointments in order to complete the surgery.
Your dentist will take an X-ray and you'll then be given a local anesthetic to numb the area. A plastic shield is used to isolate the tooth and keep it dry, and a solution of special disinfectant is used to thoroughly clean the inside of the tooth.
A drill makes a small hole into the pulp chamber so that your dentist can remove the nerve and infected tissue. The nerve is removed so as to prevent further infection and toothache. Normally it's recommended that a crown be placed over the tooth at a later date in order to protect it.
Sedation and Anesthesia
As a general rule a local anesthetic is all that's needed. This is injected into the gum surrounding the infected tooth.
An alternative to this is an intravenous sedation which is administered through a vein in the arm. This injection can help to make the patient relaxed and less aware of the procedure being carried out.
Some procedures which are likely to be complicated may require a general anesthetic which will result in loss of consciousness.
Be prepared for the costs. The cost of root canal treatment ranges from $350-$600 for a front tooth to $500-$800 for a molar.
An alternative to root canal would be to have the tooth extracted and replaced with an implant or a bridge. An implants dentist could help you with this.
Post Root Canal Home Care
After root canal surgery the area may be tender and sensitive when eating. This can last for a few days, and if it becomes uncomfortable over the counter medication is recommended. It's sensible to rest for a while so that your body can recover.
Go easy on your mouth for a while, eat foods that taste good but don't put a lot of stress and pressure on your gums and mouth. The last thing you want to do is alter the more permanent state that your dentist is going for.
A root canal doesn't have to be a serious thing, and hopefully you'll never need one. But if you do, make sure to find a dentist that knows the value of a pain-free dental visit!

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Saturday, April 21, 2012

Improving Your Smile With Cosmetic Dentistry

Greeting people involves smiling, and smiles are sometimes marred by the appearance of crooked, stained or missing teeth. Not a good first impression and it doesn't do a lot for your self esteem either. In recent years cosmetic dentistry has become extremely popular as it rectifies deformities, whitens our teeth and allows us to smile with confidence.

Smoking, drinking tea and coffee, and even the natural aging process can contribute to our teeth becoming stained. Teeth whitening techniques can bring the white glow back to your teeth, and give you the confidence to smile again. Many different procedures are now available to cover cracked or chipped teeth, and teeth that have moved slightly to one side. These can be covered with porcelain veneers that are incredibly strong and will remain luminescent.

Metal braces are normally associated with straightening existing teeth, but Invisalign has become a more popular method of aligning teeth in adults, as they're completely transparent and as a result not easily seen. They tend to be more comfortable than metal braces and cause less stress in the mouth and on the gums. Another advantage is that they can be removed for teeth cleaning and whilst eating.

Dental braces are also used to align and straighten teeth, and perform the task of correcting over and under bites as well as crooked teeth or any other faults. Mainly used on children, the braces move the teeth by means of pressure on the teeth. They have a constant pressure which over time moves the teeth into the desired position. Adjustments are made every three to four weeks, and as the teeth move new bone grows to support them in their new position.

Dental implants are performed by cosmetic dentistry surgeons to replace lost teeth. This procedure consists of placing a titanium bar into the jawbone upon which replacement teeth can be attached. This bar takes the place of the tooth's original root, and once inserted will eventually fuse with the tissue and become a permanent fixture. This does of course mean undergoing minor surgery, and you will either be given a local or general anesthetic depending upon the amount of surgery to be undertaken.

The cost of cosmetic dentistry can be high, so it's worth shopping around to compare prices. Insurance may cover the procedure, and some cosmetic dentists can recommend a payment plan to help. Don't let your teeth let you down because a beaming smile can work wonders.

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Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Oh No It's Time to Get Your Wisdom Teeth Removed! How to Get Through Wisdom Teeth Removal

Is Wisdom Teeth Removal necessary for everyone?
Wisdom teeth removal is often necessary when the wisdom teeth start to come through sideways, become trapped or only partially erupt through the gum. All of these factors can cause pain, inflammation, infection and swelling.
As most people's wisdom teeth don't start to come in until the teenage years, there's often not enough space left in the mouth for them to grow properly. That's when your dentist recommends extraction.
Symptoms of wisdom tooth impaction can be varied including swelling, loosening of the gum near the impaction, inability to fully open the mouth, unable to chew food properly, bad taste in the mouth, bad breath and aching gums.
If you become affected by any of these symptoms it's best to avoid eating sweet, sticky or hard foods as these will only make the problem worse. Try gargling with a mouth wash to help eliminate bad breath, and as a general rule always consult your dentist.
Wisdom teeth removal requires oral surgery which means it should be carried out by a specialist oral surgeon. Once a patient is anesthetized the gum tissue surrounding and above the wisdom tooth, plus part of the jaw bone which is covering the tooth, is cut. The tissue connecting the tooth and the bone are then split and the wisdom tooth removed. The wound is then stitched and cotton is pressed over the wound to stop the bleeding.
After the procedure you may experience some bleeding or swelling. Cotton wool gauze over the affected area, and an ice pack to reduce the swelling may be all that is needed. However, if these symptoms persist then you should contact your dentist.
For post root canal care, be mindful about what you eat to avoid breaking open the stitches. Try to consume mostly liquid meals such as soups and sauces, or very light meals such as scrambled eggs or mashed potatoes which do not require chewing.
Your dentist might recommend Jell-O, ice cream, cold puddings and yoghurts which are great after surgery and will help to keep the swelling down and make your mouth feel more comfortable while allowing your mouth to heal more rapidly.
The cost of wisdom teeth removal will depend on a variety of factors. Without insurance, consultation and x-rays can be around $300, and the removal of the tooth can amount to $1500.
The above figures are only approximate and will vary depending upon the surgery involved. The American Dental Association has created a series of codes which refer to dental procedures. Each medical condition is given a code number and this can help a patient determine the likely cost of the procedure recommended by their dentist.

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Sunday, April 15, 2012

Bad Breath Shouldn't Stop Anyone From Being Their Best

The cause of bad breath can sometimes be difficult to identify. However, dental decay, gum disorders, poor oral hygiene, throat infection and inflammation can all contribute to this extremely unpleasant condition.

Although it can also be caused by certain stomach problems, as a general rule halitosis usually emanates from the mouth, so consultation with your dentist will help to identify and hopefully eliminate the problem.

Alcohol tends to dry out the mouth which in turn reduces the formation of saliva. As alcohol can also cause some stomach problems, this may result in bad breath.

Periodontal disease occurs more frequently in people who smoke, so this can also be the cause of a bad breath problem.

Indigestion, constipation, dieting can all be contributing factors to bad breath, so your lifestyle should come under scrutiny when trying to understand the cause of halitosis.

Whatever the reason for the problem, oral hygiene can help to reduce if not eliminate bad breath. Daily flossing will clean the areas between the teeth the toothbrush cannot reach. The act of flossing helps to remove particles of food which, if left, will eventually cause tooth decay and gum disease.

Brushing your teeth twice a day is essential, but many people don't realize how important it is to brush for at least two minutes morning and evening. This will help to thoroughly cleanse your teeth and keep them fresh.

Your dentist may recommend you brush your tongue to help get rid of bad breath. This can be carried out using an ordinary toothbrush or a special instrument which is specifically used for the purpose.

The back of the mouth harbors a lot of bacteria and germs so brushing the tongue from as far back as possible will help to eliminate them. Finish this process by thoroughly rinsing your mouth to get rid of any residue.

A healthy diet will almost certainly help to stop such problems as bad breath, and attending a dental clinic twice a year will ensure that any problems are seen quickly before they're likely to take hold.

Bad breath can be an extremely embarrassing and upsetting issue for anyone. Socially it's unacceptable and can cause a patient many problems within their working environment as well as causing them to feel less confident.

If oral hygiene is instigated from an early age it will almost certainly play a part in preventing gum diseases such as gingivitis, and the discipline will keep the body healthy. Bad breath need not become a serious problem if dental care is part of one's daily hygiene routine.

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Thursday, April 12, 2012

The Facts About Gum Disease (Periodontal Disease)

Gum disease may not initially be apparent, as there are not always symptoms which indicate you have a problem. That's why it's important you have regular check-ups with your dentist who'll be able to see the early signs of periodontal disease and treat it before it takes hold.

Periodontal disease is quite common, and can be in the form of an inflammation of the gums, to a more serious disease that will eventually result in the damage of soft tissue and bone that supports the teeth.

During the day food particles and mucus form a layer of plaque on our teeth, and this in conjunction with the bacteria in our mouths can cause gum disease. That's why it's essential to brush our teeth twice a day and floss at least once a day. If we're negligent in this respect, we get a buildup of tartar which can only be removed by a dentist.

Tartar that's not cleaned away will eventually cause an inflammation of the gums known as gingivitis. The gums become red, swollen and start to bleed and if left untreated can lead to more serious illnesses.

Gum disease can be triggered by smoking, hormonal changes, diabetes and certain medications. It can also be brought on by serious illness, but whatever the cause the problem can be lessened by good oral hygiene.

Treating gum disease will depend entirely upon the severity of the condition. A dentist will carry out scaling of the teeth using gritty toothpaste and an electric toothbrush which will thoroughly clean the teeth and get rid of unwanted debris. On the other hand more serious conditions may warrant surgery.

The best way to prevent gum disease is to maintain good oral hygiene and to consult a dentist at least twice a year in order to ensure your teeth and gums are in good condition.

Using the best toothpaste for your needs is mostly down to personal choice. However, if you suffer with sensitive teeth and gums the best toothpaste would be one for sensitive teeth. These toothpastes help to stop your teeth and gums from feeling pain during changes in temperature, and ease the discomfort of receding gums.

It's important to realize that your overall health can be affected by the condition of your teeth and gums. A healthy diet of fresh fruit, vegetables and whole foods all of which should contain essential vitamins and minerals, will certainly help to prevent gum disease.

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Monday, April 9, 2012

Understanding Your Dental Plan

Many employers offer dental insurance as part of an overall benefits package. It's important to understand what is covered under your dental plan. Learn key dental insurance terms and find out where you can get more information about dental plans.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Do White Teeth Mean Healthy Teeth?

While a bright white smile may look healthy, it doesn't necessarily mean that teeth are healthy. Problems like tooth decay, periodontal disease or hairline fractures are often invisible to the untrained eye. Dentists can help prevent, identify and treat these conditions so teeth not only look healthy, but are healthy.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Treatment of Abscessed Teeth

If you have an abscessed tooth, that means the pulp of tooth is infected and you need root canal therapy. Fortunately, with proper care, a restored tooth can last a lifetime. Find out more about what causes an abscessed tooth and how your dentist can provide effective treatment.