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Posts Tagged: tooth pain

Basic Dental Care Exam

Dentists recommend regular dental care to preserve your oral health. They can also help you in finding the most suitable yet affordable treatment. Routine oral health care is a great way to achieve a healthy mouth and teeth for years to come. Regularly visiting your dentist for basic dental care exams and cleaning is a great start!

Reputable Prescott, AZ dentist, Dr. Mark Costes suggests scheduling a visit with your local dental hygienist to clean and polish your teeth every six to nine months. Also, you need to have routine examinations and X-rays. Based on the findings from these examinations, additional preventative dental care may be suggested to ensure good oral health longterm.

Dental Exam and Common Procedures

Complete Oral Examination – This will detect problems such as deteriorating fillings and conditions affecting your overall health such as oral cancer and gum disease. Your dentist will explore each tooth, gums, the tongue.

Panoramic X-ray – This refers to taking a shot of all of your teeth as well as your upper and lower jaws to gain a clear picture of your mouth’s condition. It shows the entire mouth in one image, identifying problems like fractures, bone abnormalities, infections, tumors, and impacted teeth. This imagery method is often used when planning treatments like dentures, braces and implants.

Dental Surgery – This includes everything from a simple tooth extraction to a complicated procedure like dental implant surgery. It is primarily done to relieve pain as well as to boost the appearance and function of your smile. It can be performed in a dentist’s office without having to be referred to another office.

Dental Care Basics

  • Brush at least twice a day – Do not rush when you brush. Proper brushing will require at least two minutes. Also, do not neglect the gum line, areas around fillings, crowns and hard-to-reach areas.
  • Clean in between teeth – Your toothbrush can’t reach all the areas to be cleaned. As such, it is very crucial for you to use floss or interdental cleaners to clean the areas that the toothbrush cannot reach. Brushing your tongue is also important since this will remove bacteria to ensure fresh breath.
  • Eat a balanced diet – Make it a habit to eat a balanced diet that contains foods from the five major food groups. You need to limit snacks containing high levels of sugar.
  • Visit your dentist regularly – Dental visits must be done every six months or more for early detection of any dental problem including tooth decay, gum disease, and oral cancer. Routine fluoride application is also a must. This can be done during your routine dental examination and cleaning.

Basic dental care will involve your daily participation. Your smile will greatly depend on these dental care basics, so always keep them in mind and put them into practice. Call us today to set up your appointment!


Tooth Decay Treatment

Contrary to the common belief that tooth decay is only caused by not brushing teeth regularly – this is the main reason, but it can actually be the result of frequent, hard brushing as well. When you brush your teeth too much and you brush rather vigorously, your tooth’s enamel gets scratched, creating small “abrasions” or cavities that if not taken care of may result in serious tooth decay.

Whatever type of tooth decay you may have, immediate treatment is important for tooth decay only gets worse over time, says a Prescott, AZ dentist. It’s worth noting too that decay spreads rapidly and when it reaches the more sensitive parts of your teeth, you can expect pain to intensify and occur more often. Other complications may arise as well, such as face swelling, pain that radiates to other parts of the head, and in severe cases, flare-ups of other health issues such as diabetes, cancer and heart disease.

Tooth decay treatment is affordable especially if it will be performed for the prevention of further damage instead of for the purpose of removal. For small abrasions or erosion on your enamel, prevention of further damage has to be done right away. The dentist will perform the treatment using filling materials that contain fluoride, calcium and phosphates.

Now, for tooth decay that has already reached the dentin, repair is performed using a dental filling. There are different kinds of filling; there’s amalgam, which is composed of silver and other metals, or a tooth-colored resin material, which has a much nicer appearance though not as durable as amalgam.

For damaged teeth that have changed in shape and size, the dentist will fill them and then add a crown to help strengthen and restore shape and function. The application of a crown can be expected to increase the cost of treatment.

As for the worst case of tooth day, meaning there’s an abscess, these are your treatment options:

  • A root canal treatment, followed by a crown because teeth can become more brittle after this treatment and are likely to break easily.

  • An extraction – this when there are no other means to save the tooth.

These only go to show how important it is to have consistent, good oral care practices because tooth decay is a serious health issue. On top of this, treatment can cost you a significant amount of money. So brush, floss, rinse with a fluoride mouthwash and visit your dentist regularly to prevent the pain and cost of tooth decay.

Schedule an appointment with one of our dentists today!


Best Tips for Preventing a Broken Tooth

Broken ToothBest Tips for Preventing a Broken Tooth

Your teeth are tough, which is probably why, at times, you use them for purposes usually reserved for hand tools (such as ripping open a bag of chips).

But as tough as teeth are, they are still prone to breakage — especially if you’re physically weak or you do not take care of them really well. Also, if you put your teeth against equally hard or harder elements, they will likely lose in the “durability” battle.

If you don’t ever want to suffer a broken tooth (and look rather funky), here are the best tips for preventing a chipped or broken tooth.

Use Fluoride Toothpaste

It can prevent demineralization by making teeth more resistant to acid attacks from sugar and plaque bacteria.

Don’t Use Your Teeth as Tools

It may seem cool to be able to remove a cola crown using your teeth, but they may not be strong enough for the job. Your teeth can get seriously damaged.

Stop Biting Your Nails

This creates a grinding action that wears away the tooth’s enamel.

Always Make Sure That Your Meats are Free From Bone

Accidentally biting down on chicken, pork or beef bone can easily crack a tooth. So, slice meats into small pieces to be able to separate bones properly, instead of consuming them in big chunks.

Beware of Corn on the Cob as Well

Cooked corn kernels may be soft, but the cob will remain tough. Likewise, be careful of popcorn pieces that are not properly popped. The dried kernel is often very hard.

Don’t Chew on Hard Candy

Not only is the overwhelming amount of sugar bad for your teeth, chewing on hard candy can significantly increase the chances of a chipped or cracked tooth.

Don’t Chew on Ice

Not only is it hard, it’s also extremely cold. You’ll get tooth sensitivity and make your teeth prone to breakage. Chewing ice is a big no-no, according to a Prescott, AZ dentist. If you can’t avoid ice (especially if you’re pregnant and ice helps you control the discomfort), opt for crushed or slushy ice.

If You Suffer From Bruxism, Do Invest in the Right Protective Equipment for Your Teeth

The constant teeth grinding when you’re not conscious can wear down enamel and, at the same time, make your teeth weak and prone to further damage.

Improve your diet and make sure you regularly consume food items that are known to strengthen teeth such as milk, yogurt, kefir and cheese (which all have plenty of calcium and phosphorous), celery, strawberries (which can also whiten teeth, by the way), meats, sesame seeds, and parsley.

If you are suffering through the pain of a broken tooth call your Prescott Valley dentist as soon as possible. The professionals at Horizon Dental Group are highly trained to handle your broken tooth efficiently and as gently as possible.


Damaged Filling | What Should You Do Now?

damaged filling

What to Do When You Have a Damaged Filling

When one of your teeth sustains damage because of decay, your dentist is most likely to replace the lost tooth structure with a dental filling or dental restoration.  This will help your teeth regain normal function for a number of years.

However, no dental filling is designed to last forever. It’s inevitable for your to suffer from a damaged filling at some point. Often, normal wear and tear is the cause of damage; in some cases, a person who frequently grinds or clenches their teeth can end up putting too much stress on the filling, causing it to fail and to fall out.

 

Why addressing the damage is important

A damaged filling, when left unchecked, can develop worn areas, cracks, or chips that can create a gap between the tooth and the filling; this gap then becomes an entry point for bacteria, which are abundant in saliva and in dental plaque (which is the thin film that forms over teeth and gums). The bacteria won’t be easy to remove by brushing your teeth, and they can cause decay to develop underneath the dental filling or along its edges.

 

In more severe cases, the decay can worsen and infect the dental pulp which contains nerves and the blood supply for the tooth. The dentist may then need to perform root canal treatment or even extract the tooth entirely.

 

What you should do

If you haven’t noticed signs of your dental filling failing yet, the best preventative solution would be to pay regular visits to the dentist as usual. Your dentist will examine your teeth and your dental device and look out for warning signs, like any weaknesses, chips or cracks in the filling.

 

Your dentist may use a tool called an explorer to gently feel for worn spots around the edge of the filling and determine if the filling needs replacement. X-rays or dental radiographs may also be taken to pinpoint decay underneath the filling.

 

On the other hand, if no signs of damage have been observed and yet one day you suddenly discover that your filling has fallen out, don’t panic. Your dental clinic will have time set aside for emergency cases, such as lost fillings, and your dentist should be able to see to your filling on the same day. After a look into your medical history and an examination, the dentist will determine the best treatment method to use.

 

Some damaged fillings will simply need a replacement, and your Prescott Valley dentist will talk to you about the options for the filling’s material, such as amalgam (silver) or glass ionomer and composite (tooth-colored), which are ideal for molars and premolars. Composite and glass ionomer fillings are also recommended for front teeth (canines or incisors). Other failed fillings may require a root canal, after which a crown or cap will be placed to restore the tooth. There’s also the possibility that the lost filling may require a tooth extraction.

 

Dental fillings help restore the integrity of your tooth, so it’s important that they are kept in the best condition possible. Remember to submit to regular dental examinations even when you don’t notice any problems arising so that discomfort, pain, and tooth loss can be prevented.

 


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.


Tooth Extraction Expectations

Tooth Extraction Expectations and Recovery Tips

Tooth extraction is one of the most common dental procedures available, but many people are still hesitant about undergoing the process. If you’re up for a tooth extraction, expectations checking and being more informed about it can allay your fears and help you prepare for a quick recovery.  

Reasons for tooth extraction

Several conditions can be a reason for your dentist to order or recommend extraction. Some of these reasons include: a tooth that is too lose for bone grafting; extensive decay; an extra tooth that blocks the growth of permanent teeth; infection or risk of infection; impacted wisdom teeth, and certain medical procedures that require the removal of teeth from the bone. Depending on your specific condition, you may need to undergo either a simple extraction or a surgical extraction.

What to expect pre-surgery

Before the actual extraction, you’ll undergo a thorough dental examination. If necessary, an X-ray may also be taken on the affected area, especially if a surgical removal is a possibility. In some cases, 3D imaging may be required to make sure no vital nerves, arteries and facial structures will be affected.

If surgery is indeed determined to be the best option for you, then you must provide your complete dental and medical history to your dental care team. This is to rule out allergies, contraindications to certain medications, and other considerations for surgery. If your teeth and gums show too much infection and inflammation, you may be asked to take a course of antibiotics for several days before the surgery, as a way of making sure the anesthesia takes full effect during the operation.  

What to do after the extraction

Depending on the anesthesia used, and more so if you have undergone surgery, it may be best to arrange for someone to accompany you to the clinic or drive you home after the tooth extraction.

Your aftercare regimen likewise depends on a case-to-case basis, so make sure to follow the instructions provided by the dentist. As a general guideline, however, the following tips apply to everyone who has just undergone a tooth extraction:

  • Swelling is expected. Applying ice packs to your cheeks can ease the inflammation.
  • You won’t feel pain during the extraction but you may feel discomfort afterwards, especially once the anesthesia wears off. Your dentist will prescribe medication to help you reduce and manage the pain.
  • Follow a soft diet for the first several days. Avoid hot food and beverages. Don’t drink through a straw and don’t make movements that create pressure within your mouth (sucking, spitting, etc.) and disturb the blood clot in the extraction area.
  • Gently swishing your mouth with warm water mixed with a pinch of salt helps relieve the bleeding.
  • Brush and floss carefully, making sure to avoid the area of extraction.
  • Avoid smoking and drinking alcohol.

 


Do I Really Need A Root Canal?

Do I Need a Root Canal Treatment?

When people hear the words root canal, they often visualize a patient sitting in the dentist’s chair, experiencing pain and discomfort as the dentist goes about the procedure. This popular image is the reason why some people would say “I’d rather have root canal than (do some other random thing I really don’t want to do).”

On the contrary, people must be helped to understand that root canal is actually a procedure that can provide relief from an existing pain in the mouth. While the treatment can cause some level of soreness—like most dental treatments can—once healed, the result is the absence of pain, a much healthier mouth, and greater ease and comfort in eating and speaking.

Are you currently wondering, Do I need a root canal treatment? Here are important things you need to know about this beneficial dental procedure.

What is it?

In the hollow part of the center of a tooth, there is a soft substance made up of blood vessels, nerves and connective tissue, called the pulp. The pulp chamber (that hollow area) goes on down through canals that reach the tooth’s roots and the surrounding bone. When the pulp inside the chamber becomes infected, inflamed or dead, the pulp is removed, and then the pulp chamber as well as the canals are filled and sealed to prevent the entry of bacteria. This procedure is called root canal treatment or endodontic treatment.

When should a person undergo this treatment?

There are a number of symptoms of tooth pulp or nerve damage that can help a dentist pinpoint whether a root canal treatment is the best solution available for a patient’s specific condition:

Pain. Toothaches are quite common, but if the pain from the living tooth is mostly described as a sensitivity to heat or cold which continues even after the hot or cold stimulus is no longer present, a root canal is a must.

Abscess. If the tooth is dead, on the other hand, and there is an abscess that is possibly causing bleeding or swelling around a tooth, the person will feel pain every time pressure is directed on the tooth. This is also a sign that root canal is necessary.

In this case, a pocket of pus forms around the end of a tooth root or on the outside of the gums—it will look like a pimple from which pus drains.

Severe cavities. If you have tooth decay that has extended to the pulp, a root canal is needed to remove the infected pulp and affected nerves.

Fracture or trauma. When a tooth experiences a fracture that goes deep into the tooth, affecting the pulp and leaving too little teeth above the gumline to make a crown useful, root canal is recommended. During the procedure, a post will be placed down the tooth canal, and this can help restore the fractured tooth.

Likewise, great force trauma can sever and kill the nerve at the end of a tooth’s root. Root canal can help clean out the dead nerve.

Excessive dental procedures. If you have been repeatedly getting treatment for a particular tooth, the constant stress can cause inflammation of the pulp.

Your dentist knows best

If you have observed similar symptoms, pay a visit to your dentist. He or she will take X-rays and perform a pulp test to check your response and determine if root canal treatment is the best recommendation.