Family Cosmetic Dentist Blog
Posts for: August, 2016
Removing a problem tooth (extraction) is a common dental procedure. But not all extractions are alike — depending on the type of tooth, its location and extenuating circumstances, you may need an oral surgeon to perform it.
Fortunately, that's not always the case. Teeth with straight or cone-shaped roots, like an upper front tooth, have a fairly straight removal path. A general dentist first carefully manipulates the tooth loose from the periodontal ligament fibers that help hold it in place (experienced dentists, in fact, develop a “feel” for this process). Once it's loosened from the fibers it's a simple motion to remove the tooth.
But as mentioned before, a “simple extraction” won't work with every tooth or situation. To find out if it can we'll first need to determine the true shape of the tooth and roots, as well as the condition of the supporting bone. We might find any number of issues during this examination that make a simple extraction problematic.
For example, teeth with multiple roots (especially in back) may have complicated removal paths. If the roots themselves are unhealthy and brittle from previous injury or a root canal treatment, they can fracture into smaller pieces during removal. A tooth could also be impacted — it hasn't fully erupted but remains below the gum surface. It's these types of situations that require surgery to remove the tooth.
During a surgical extraction, the oral surgeon will first numb the area with a local anesthetic, as well as a sedative if you have issues with anxiety. They then perform a surgical procedure appropriate for the situation to remove the tooth. More than likely they'll insert bone grafts before closing the site with stitches to deter bone loss (a common occurrence after losing a tooth).
Afterward, your provider may prescribe antibiotics and an antibacterial mouthrinse to ward off infection. You'll also be given care instructions for the extraction site to keep it clean. Any discomfort should subside in a few days and can be managed effectively with a mild anti-inflammatory drug like ibuprofen or aspirin.
It can be overwhelming having a tooth removed. In your dentist's capable hands, however, the experience will be uneventful.
If you would like more information on tooth extraction, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Simple Tooth Extraction?”
Cavities can happen even before a baby has his first piece of candy. This was the difficult lesson actor David Ramsey of the TV shows Arrow and Dexter learned when his son DJ’s teeth were first emerging.
“His first teeth came in weak,” Ramsey recalled in a recent interview. “They had brown spots on them and they were brittle.” Those brown spots, he said, quickly turned into caviÂties. How did this happen?
Ramsey said DJ’s dentist suspected it had to do with the child’s feedings — not what he was being fed but how. DJ was often nursed to sleep, “so there were pools of breast milk that he could go to sleep with in his mouth,” Ramsey explained.
While breastfeeding offers an infant many health benefits, problems can occur when the natural sugars in breast milk are left in contact with teeth for long periods.Â Sugar feeds decay-causing oral bacteria, and these bacteria in turn release tooth-eroding acids. The softer teeth of a young child are particularly vulnerable to these acids; the end result can be tooth decay.
This condition, technically known as “early child caries,” is referred to in laymen’s terms as “baby bottle tooth decay.” However, it can result from nighttime feedings by bottle or breast. The best way to prevent this problem is to avoid nursing babies to sleep at night once they reach the teething stage; a bottle-fed baby should not be allowed to fall asleep with anything but water in their bottle or “sippy cup.”
Here are some other basics of infant dental care that every parent should know:
- Wipe your baby’s newly emerging teeth with a clean, moist washcloth after feedings.
- Brush teeth that have completely grown in with a soft-bristled, child-size toothbrush and a smear of fluoride toothpaste no bigger than a grain of rice.
- Start regular dental checkups by the first birthday.
Fortunately, Ramsey reports that his son is doing very well after an extended period of professional dental treatments and parental vigilance.
“It took a number of months, but his teeth are much, much better,” he said. “Right now we’re still helping him and we’re still really on top of the teeth situation.”
If you would like more information on dental care for babies and toddlers, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more by reading the Dear Doctor magazine articles “The Age One Dental Visit” and “Dentistry & Oral Health for Children.”
Do you dislike the way your smile looks after losing a tooth? A dental implant can replace your missing tooth and make it easier to bite and chew. Dr. Ron Solomon and Dr. Angela Burleson-Ott, your Cincinnati, OH, dentists at Cornerstone Dental Group, explain how dental implants can help you.
Implants improve your self-confidence
Society places great emphasis on a full healthy smile. If you've lost a tooth, you may feel self-conscious about smiling or talking, which can affect you socially and professionally. A dental implant closes the gap in your smile and helps restore your self-confidence.
Dental implants replace tooth roots
Bridges and dentures, the other tooth replacement options, only replace the visible portions of your teeth, unlike dental implants. The first part of the implant process involves placing a titanium implant in a small hole in your jaw. Over the course of three to six months, the implant bonds to the bone. Once the process is complete, your dentist attaches a dental crown that replaces the tooth above the gum line. Replacing the roots of your teeth offers several advantages, including:
- Natural Feel: Since your implant and crown functions as one unit, your tooth replacement will feel just like a natural tooth. Bridges and dentures can irritate gums if they don't fit properly, but those problems won't be an issue with dental implants.
- Stronger Jawbone: Teeth roots not only anchor your teeth in your jawbone but also constantly stimulate the bone and keep it strong. After you lose a tooth, the area of the bone underneath begins to weaken and recede, which can eventually lead to facial sagging and additional tooth loss. Your implant takes the place of your roots and provides the stimulation the jawbone needs to remain strong and healthy
- Better Biting Power: When you replace missing teeth with dentures, your biting power decreases, making it hard to eat steak, chicken and a variety of hard foods. Because dental implants are securely anchored in your jaws, you don't experience a significant loss of biting power.
Dental implants can help restore your smile. Call Dr. Ron Solomon and Dr. Angela Burleson-Ott, your Cincinnati, OH, dentists at Cornerstone Dental Group, at (513) 631-8920 to schedule an appointment to learn if you're a good candidate. Transform your smile with dental implants!