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Archive for April 2016

Cavity Prevention | A Few Tips and Tricks

Cavity Prevention

Dentist-Approved Tips For Cavity Prevention

Cavities are such a common dental issue that some people tend to simply ignore their presence. That is, until they get attacked by the searing pain that cavities can cause – among other serious complications and health risks.

 

Some of the problems you might encounter as a result of having cavities include the following:

  • Tooth structure may weaken or become damaged.
  • Tooth and gums may become swollen due to abscess and the presence of pus around the infected tooth and gum area.  
  • Permanent teeth might move and shift, leaving gaps or causing overlapping of teeth.  
  • Difficulty chewing and eating, which will limit your food options and in the long term will affect your nutrition and overall health.
  • Intense pain in the gums and teeth. Eventually, this pain can escalate and become so debilitating that you won’t be able to continue doing your daily routines and responsibilities.
  • Tooth loss, difficulty in speaking properly and having a less-than-presentable smile can impact your social life, self-esteem as well as personal relationships and career development.
  • There is a higher risk of contracting life-threatening diseases due to heart complications and diabetes that can be caused by blood infections that originate from bacteria from the mouth.

 

Given the serious, risky and long-term side effects of having cavities, it’s important to get help from your dentist at the first sign of it. As always, prevention is better than cure, so knowing and following the proven ways to cavity prevention is a must for everyone regardless of age, gender or occupation.  


Eat well

Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables that boost dental health. Avoid snacking on sugary treats and drinks, including fruit juice.

 

Don’t go to bed without brushing your teeth

Brushing your teeth during the day after meals is definitely important, but what you don’t want to miss is brushing after your last meal or snack in the evening, right before you go to bed. Use toothpaste with fluoride, an ingredient that effectively fights cavities.  

Instill dental care habits early

Train your children on dental hygiene while they are still small so they can establish good dental health habits that can stick with them for life. Teach them the proper way to brush and keep supervising them until at least the age of seven.

 

Get help from your dentist

A particular solution that your Prescott Valley dentist may be able to offer you for cavity prevention is the application of dental sealants. These sealants are coated on the tooth surface to serve as a barrier against food particles and bacteria. Children as young as five who already have their first permanent molars can be taken for dental sealants. Regular professional tooth cleanings and in-clinic dental examinations are essential investments as well to protect yourself and your family against cavities.


Prevent Bleeding Gums | Horizon Dental Care Prescott Valley

prevent bleeding gums

How to Prevent Bleeding Gums

 

After brushing your teeth, you gargle and rinse your mouth and then you notice a tinge of blood on the sink.

You might think that this is normal and nothing to worry about. However, bleeding gums are often a sign of a few dental problems, including gum disease. Gum disease, in particular, can be hard to detect because it is not painful for people who suffer from it. Most people realize that they are suffering from it during the advanced stages. Taking note of gum bleeding and seeking professional help at once can help prevent gum disease from worsening. Let’s take a look at a few ways that you can prevent bleeding gums.

 

What causes bleeding gums?

Bleeding gums usually indicate dental problems. Rarely do these indicate a problem with other body parts. Apart from gum disease, there are other causes of bleeding gums.

 

These include brushing too hard, a vitamin deficiency, some types of medications, bleeding/clotting disorders, hormonal changes due to pregnancy, ill-fitting dentures, and mouth sores. Patients who suffer from leukemia, diabetes, heart disease and scurvy may also experience bleeding gums.

 

Treating bleeding gums

Dentists treat bleeding gums by removing the build-up of plaque which leads to gum disease. Over time, plaque can turn into tartar which adheres to the teeth. And the more that tartar adheres to your teeth, the more likely it will be for plaque to get below the gum line and lead to infections.

 

If you notice that you have bleeding gums, book an appointment with your dentist as soon as possible to treat your gingivitis and prevent gum disease.

 

Dentists may also use techniques like scaling and root planing for patients who suffer from advanced periodontal disease.

 

Prevention

If you want to know how to prevent bleeding gums, your dentist can offer a few invaluable tips for your unique condition. But broadly speaking, there are a few simple things that you can do to prevent bleeding gums.

 

For starters, learn and master good oral hygiene habits, including proper brushing and flossing. Use a toothbrush with soft bristles and use these gently on your teeth and gums. When flossing, make sure you reach beyond the gum line.

 

If you are a smoker, consider quitting your vice. Try to eat a balanced diet and avoid or limit your intake of foods with too much sugar and carbohydrates. If you have a new set of dentures, make sure that these fit you well.

 

If you cannot prevent bleeding gums, you can use a cold compress to control it. Avoid using mouthwashes which contain alcohol. Use a saline mix or hydrogen peroxide instead.

Gum bleeding can be a sign of a bigger health concern. If you have tried all the at home remedies and you are still in pain or your still concerned about your bleeding gums, contact your Prescott Valley dentist at Horizon Dental Care.


Dental Bridges and Crowns | Important Things To Know

dental bridges

7 Important Things to Know About Dental Bridges and Crowns

Prosthodontics and restorative dentistry are important branches of dentistry. People who damage or lose their teeth rely on it not only to regain the nice appearance of their mouth but also to restore proper function and prevent teeth from shifting. And when it comes to restorative dentistry, a dental bridge or crown (also inlays and onlays) are greatly in demand for both aesthetic and functional purposes.

If you’re not too familiar with how they are applied, how they work to improve oral health, and the potential side effects to consider should you need to get these one day, important information about them are provided below to help you understand them better.

 

Multiple Sessions Required

It typically takes a two to three sessions to complete the application of dental bridges and crowns. These sessions are divided into the preparation of the teeth, taking their impressions, the placement of the temporary crown, and finally, the placement of the permanent crown

 

Teeth Sensitivity is common

Sensitivity of teeth, gum soreness, and other discomforts around the treated area are common especially before the permanent crown is placed.

 

Effective Ways To Prevent Discomfort

Your dentist will likely prescribe pain relievers and advise you to use a cold compress to ease sensitivity and other discomforts.

 

Temporary Crown Aftercare

You need to be careful with the temporary crown because it’s just a plastic-based material or a soft metal. Avoid chewing on your teeth, especially while you’re still feeling numbness in your mouth due to the anesthesia.

Likewise, be careful with flossing around the temporary crown; make sure you pull the floss out gently to prevent it from coming off. 

 

Off Limit Foods

Foods that are chewy (tough meats), hard (ice, candies, or peanut brittle) and sticky (toffee, gum) are not allowed when you have temporary crowns as these foods may loosen the crown and cause it to come off — or worse, break it. It’s going to be a huge hassle to have to make the trip to the dentist for a new temporary crown to be made and placed back in.

 

What To Expect After Your Permanent Crown Is Placed.

When the permanent crown is placed, the teeth surrounding it may feel some tightness, but you can expect everything to feel more natural over the next couple of days after application.

 

Permanent Crown Aftercare.

If you feel like your bite is uneven due to the permanent crown, it’s imperative that you inform your dentist right away so appropriate adjustments can be made.

If the permanent crown is not the right fit, this can cause other teeth to shift (that is, if there’s space for movement) or damage the teeth beside it.

If you have any additional questions about dental bridges and crowns, consider contacting the the dental professions at Horizon Dental Group.


The Connection between Migraines and Teeth Pain

Migraines and Teeth PainSinusitis, Migraines and Teeth Pain – What is the Connection?

Pain is a part of life. Some of the common pains people are familiar with are stomach aches, back pain, migraines and teeth pain. For these pains, it’s usually easy to determine what may be causing them.

But what if the possible causes you’ve identified — because of the location where the pain is concentrated — turned out not to be the real reasons behind the pain? It’s just like that terrible “toothache” that wouldn’t go away — you’ve taken over-the-counter drugs for toothaches and explored other remedies, yet the ache still remains and even seems to be intensifying over time. If this is the case, it’s quite possible that the toothache is not a real toothache. 

 

Identifying The Real Issue

Studies prove that there are certain conditions that create discomfort in rather unexpected areas of the body. Because of this, people confuse the symptoms of these conditions for something else. Take, for example, a bad sinus infection. The pain of sinusitis is not concentrated and confined around the nose. The worst pains of this infection are actually felt around the jaw area, the ears and the eyes. These pains are even typically accompanied by swelling of the gums.

Another example is an atypical migraine. This migraine’s pains occur in the mid-face location, while most migraines occur in the forehead region. In the occurrence of such migraines, experiencing tooth pain that is so intense and long-lasting is inevitable. This is the main reason why confusion as to what kind of pain you are feeling transpires. It’s so easy to conclude that there’s something wrong with your teeth because they hurt.

 

Seeking the Correct Diagnosis

Turning to a dentist when you feel such pains will prove to be quite helpful, even if the true source of pain isn’t a dental issue. A dentist is knowledgeable in neurovascular orofacial pain and can correctly diagnose it. Not only that, but most dentists today (who don’t specialize in orofacial pain management) work with other medical professionals for an accurate diagnosis. This, then, will create a multidisciplinary approach or treatment program that will be effective in easing the discomfort of atypical mid-face migraine. 

 

Preventing Complications

The collaborative approach dentists take in dealing with conditions that manifest through teeth pains ensures patients get the appropriate treatment as soon as possible. The accurate and timely diagnosis and treatment of conditions are crucial in preventing severe consequences, such as more intense pains and complications.

 

The excruciating pain and discomfort of sinusitis and such migraines are easily treatable with medication. Patients who suffer from sinusitis, migraines and teeth pain can remain pain-free with the right prescription medication and regimen. It is crucial that you seek out help from your local Prescott Valley Dentist when the pain starts in order to prevent a more intense issue from developing.


Dental Replacement Options |More Information About Dental Implants

Dental Replacement OptionsDental Replacement Options | The Benefits of Getting Dental Implants

Aside from trauma or dental injury, tooth loss can occur due to a number of reasons. These reasons or factors include practicing bad oral hygiene, frequent tooth grinding or bruxism, failing to have teeth with caries properly treated, smoking and drinking, and poor nutrition. If you fail to correct these bad habits immediately and neglect to visit your dentist regularly, you may end up losing all of your natural teeth in a short span of time.

Once you already have a number of missing teeth, you can choose from among various dental solutions available to replace them. One of the most popular dental replacement options today is to get dental implants.

A dental implant is an artificial tooth root that is surgically placed in a person’s jaw to securely hold a crown, removable denture or bridge. A dental implant is made up of three parts:

  • The implant device –The part which is surgically inserted into the jaw bone
  • The abutment – The piece that connects the implant device to the replacement tooth
  • Crown or denture – The artificial replacement tooth

Implants are usually made of titanium. This is the most popular material of choice since it is bio-compatible, has been proven to be strong and durable, and has the unique property of effectively fusing directly to the bone through a process called osseointegration.

Benefits Offered By Dental Implants

Dental implants can offer numerous benefits to individuals who want to replace one or more of their missing teeth. Their advantages include the following:

 

  • They look and feel like natural teeth. Compared to bridges and dentures, implants are simply aesthetically superior since they stay in place and they look and function like real teeth. With a dental implant, you may even forget that you lost a tooth.
  • They provide comfort and convenience of use. With this cosmetic dental solution, you don’t have to go through the bother and discomfort of removing dentures to clean them or before going to sleep. Unlike dentures, which usually make chewing difficult, implants function like your own natural teeth; as such, you get to eat your favorite foods without pain and worries.  
  • They enhance oral health. An implant can save the adjacent teeth since they don’t need to be anchored to the teeth next to them. As a result, they preserve the overall integrity of your healthy, natural teeth. With implants, you also have easier access between teeth, thus improving your oral hygiene.
  • They are strong and durable. As previously mentioned, dental implants are made of titanium, one of the strongest and most durable materials around. They will definitely last for many years. With proper care and maintenance, they may even last a lifetime.
  • They won’t impede your speech. Lastly, dentures can slip within the mouth, causing you to mumble or slur your words. Implants, however, won’t give you this problem since they stay in place and the artificial teeth would never slip.

 

Dental implants can make the loss of natural teeth more bearable. With this cosmetic dental solution, you can have better oral health and feel more confident about your smile. If you feel that dental implants are the right solution for you, call Horizon Dental Group and schedule an appointment for a consultation.


Dental Veneers | A Few Things You Should Know

Porcelain Dental VeneersWhat You Need to Know About Porcelain Dental Veneers

 

Nobody’s perfect, but at least you can make your smile as flawless as it can be. Thanks to dental veneers, you can improve the appearance of your teeth while retaining their natural look and feel. Veneers can correct a wide range of issues, from discoloration and poor shape, to fractures and gaps, to dislocated teeth and bite problems.

While many think porcelain veneers are “simply” a cosmetic solution, what they don’t know is by improving the aesthetics of your teeth, you get to improve their strength and functionality as well.   

Why choose veneers?

Dental veneers in Sterling Heights as well as other parts of the state (and even the world) are considered the go-to option for people looking for a practical, long-term and reliable way to make their smile even more beautiful.

When done by a highly skilled and experienced dental professional, veneers can offer you not just a good alternative to your flawed teeth. It can also offer a way better version of the original due to the following reasons:

    • Porcelain veneers mimic the appearance, texture and polish of natural teeth so it’s almost impossible for anyone to tell that you’re wearing them.
    • Each veneer can be sculpted according to the exact, precise shape that will look best for your smile. The result: a more attractive and appealing smile that your natural teeth alone won’t ever achieve.

 

  • Veneers can resist stains and discoloration, unlike natural teeth. They remain pristine even if exposed to coffee, wine, cigarettes and other teeth-staining substances.

 

Keep these in mind

Having strong, good-looking veneers largely depends on the expertise of the dentist or dental team assigned to you. Make sure to keep the following in mind for best results:  

 

  • Not everyone can wear veneers. Make sure to consult your trusted dental clinic first so they can assess your needs, preferences and suitability for the treatment.

 

  • Don’t expect the exact same results you see from your friend/relative/favorite celebrity. Your dentist will have you undergo a series of diagnostic tests such as cosmetic imaging and smile analysis to make sure the veneers are tailored and designed exclusively for you.  

 

  • Expect your original tooth structure to be altered. Some portion of your natural tooth enamel will need to be removed to create space for the veneer to be applied. In some cases, you can get away with very minimal tooth material removal through the use of veneers that can be applied simply by being bonded to the superficial surface of the teeth.

 

  • Invest in proper maintenance. Follow the care tips your dentist has provided, and make sure to show up for follow-up visits and assessments. Practice good, consistent oral hygiene every day to preserve the look and performance of your veneers — and of course, to maintain your perfect smile.

 


Tooth-Colored Fillings | What You Need To Know

Why Are Tooth-Colored Fillings the Better Option for Cavities?

 

When you have teeth that are damaged by decay, one of the solutions that your dentist can provide is a filling. First, the decayed tooth material will be removed, and then the affected area is cleaned. Afterwards, a filling can be placed on the cleaned out cavity in order to close off all spaces where bacteria can enter and stimulate further decay.

 

Dental fillings can be made of different materials. Some people will choose fillings made of porcelain or gold. Others prefer tooth-colored fillings, also called composite resin. An amalgam can also be used — it’s an alloy of silver, copper, mercury, tin, and zinc (in some cases).

 

A better choice

Many dentists recommend tooth-colored restorations over the more controversial silver fillings for a number of reasons, including:

 

  • Tooth-colored restorations, porcelain inlays/onlays or composite resin are bonded to the affected tooth. This means that there is a tight, secure fit to the natural tooth, helping it become stronger and more intact.
  • The resin cement used in tooth-colored fillings can contain fluoride, which can help prevent further tooth decay.
  • Tooth-colored restorations do not require placement below the gum line, so you get fillings that wear like natural teeth and promote gum health.
  • These are mercury-free fillings, so none of the health risks associated with silver fillings and dental amalgam are cause for concern.

 

Silver fillings, on the other hand, come with considerable disadvantages such as:

 

  • Their edges can break, wear down, or become weak, which results in reduced protection for the tooth and a risk of causing new cavities to develop.
  • Over time, the metal in silver fillings can expand, contract, and eventually cause the tooth to split.
  • Silver fillings contain 50% mercury, and when they corrode or leak, your teeth and gums can become stained.
  • Dental amalgam emits mercury even after being implanted into the body, which endangers human health. In pregnant women, the mercury can penetrate the placenta and accumulate in the fetus. Children, fetuses, nursing infants and individuals with compromised kidney function are more prone to health risks caused by mercury.
  • When amalgam is used as a cavity filling, a substantial amount of healthy tooth matter must be removed. The drawback is that the overall tooth structure becomes damaged and weak, so more dental work will need to be done in the future.
  • Dental devices that come with mercury add to the pollution in the environment. The mercury finds its way into the water waste in dental clinics, which can then end up in water systems and the ocean.

 

If you have silver or amalgam fillings, they can be effectively replaced with tooth-colored fillings in just one sitting (with the help of technology called computer aided design and computer assisted milling or CADCAM) or in two appointments (using chairside oral scanning or COS). Your dentist can help your teeth become stronger, with a more natural look and feel.  


Plaque | How You Can Prevent and Remove This Nasty Buildup

How Does Plaque Form and How Can You Prevent and Remove It?

Dental experts always recommend that you brush your teeth at least twice a day and floss at least once daily. Following these two good dental hygiene practices ensures that you keep your teeth and gums healthy and that your breath always smells fresh. Habitual brushing and flossing also help prevent the buildup of plaque on your teeth.

Dental plaque is a sticky film that comes from leftover food particles and saliva that mix in your mouth. Plaque forms and builds up on your teeth if you don’t brush properly after eating. Plaque contains bacteria that release acids which attack the enamel of your tooth. This buildup can contribute to tooth decay and gum disease.

Tartar, the substance that makes your teeth appear yellowish and smell bad, is also caused by dental plaque. Tartar is actually plaque that remains on your teeth for several days and hardens. Unfortunately, tartar can’t be easily removed by brushing alone. It has to be scraped off by a dentist during an in-office cleaning procedure.

But how does plaque form on your teeth, exactly?

Plaque formation begins when you chew your food and it breaks down into carbohydrates. These carbohydrates mix with the natural bacteria found in your mouth and create a specific type of acid. This acid then combines with your saliva and other food particles left on your teeth to form a sticky substance which is plaque.  

Dental Plaque Prevention and Removal

Below are some ways that can help you prevent and remove dental plaque buildup:

Brush and floss daily.

Brush your teeth at least twice a day to remove any buildup that is still in the early stage of development. Brushing properly and regularly also effectively removes loose food particles that contribute to plaque buildup. Flossing also helps remove food particles and debris from between your teeth that brushing can’t eliminate.

Use a toothpaste with ingredients that can remove plaque and tartar.

Some toothpaste brands contain pyrophosphates, a type of chemical that has been proven effective in reducing plaque and tartar buildup. Various studies also show that using a toothpaste containing baking soda helps remove plaque from your teeth.

Modify your diet.

Control your cravings and avoid consuming large amounts of candies, cookies, chocolates, and other sweets. If you do eat some, brush your teeth at least an hour after eating and/or immediately gargle with water.

See your dentist for a professional teeth cleaning procedure

If this buildup has already transformed into tartar, brushing and flossing won’t be able to get rid of these substances. You need to undergo an in-office teeth cleaning procedure.

 

The Best Prevention

When it comes to your teeth, you can’t afford to be lax. Even if you’re swamped with work and chores, or feeling too tired or sleepy, always take the time to brush and floss your teeth properly. Don’t forget to schedule a routine cleaning with your local dentist.