Family Cosmetic Dentist Blog
Posts for: October, 2021
Preventing tooth decay from developing in your child's teeth requires a strong commitment to daily oral hygiene. But if you have a child with a chronic physical or behavioral condition, you might find it difficult to keep that commitment in the light of other pressing health needs.
But tooth decay is just as important a health issue as the others with which you may contend. Because primary teeth guide incoming permanent teeth to erupt properly, losing them prematurely can lead to a poor bite and other associated problems. This could further diminish their quality of life already compromised by their chronic condition.
Helping your special needs child avoid tooth decay isn't easy—but it can be done. Here's how!
Brush and floss for them. Normally, a parent's goal is to help their children learn to care for their teeth on their own. But depending on the nature of your child's chronic disease, that may not be possible. Instead, you may need to take an active role in their daily hygiene for the foreseeable future, even brushing and flossing for them if necessary.
Model proper dental care. Even so, it's still a good idea to guide them toward performing oral hygiene tasks without assistance, according to their abilities. This could be a long road, though, one that requires your active participation. You can ease this process by continuously modeling good dental care behavior for them through brushing and flossing together.
See an understanding dentist. Although caring for a special needs child can be isolating, you don't have to go at it alone. That includes taking care of their teeth and gums: A dentist who has both training and experience in treating children with chronic health conditions can become an important partner in your efforts to fight tooth decay.
Communicate between all care providers. Likewise, having everyone involved in your child's care on the same page can make decay prevention a much easier process. Be sure then to share your concerns about your child's needs, including dental care, with attending physicians, therapists and, of course, dentists.
If you would like more information on dental care for special needs children, 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 “Managing Tooth Decay in Children With Chronic Diseases.”
How dental implants from your family dentists in Cincinnati, OH, can rebuild your smile.
Dental implants are an investment in your smile, and you need to understand what you are getting and how you can benefit. The truth is, dental implants provide the most natural-looking tooth replacement available today. They also can give you superb chewing function, which helps your digestion and overall health.
Drs. Ron Solomon, Angela Burleson-Ott, and Bradley Girdwood of Cornerstone Dental Group in Cincinnati, OH, offer comprehensive family dental care, including dental implants to rebuild your smile.
The dental implant process is straightforward. The dental implant screw is placed during a simple in-office procedure. This screw will become the “root” of your missing tooth.
Over time, bone grows around the dental implant screw and fuses with it, anchoring it firmly in place. After the implant screw is secure and stable, it is capped with a sparkling new dental implant crown.
Dental implants can replace a single missing tooth, several missing teeth, or even an entire arch of teeth. Dental implants can give you back your smile.
There are many important benefits and reasons why you should choose dental implants. Consider that dental implants are:
- Lifelike and natural, because dental implant restorations are made of materials that closely resemble natural tooth structure
- Fully stable, because they are locked in place by bone, so they will never move around
- Easy to maintain, because you can simply brush and floss them just like your natural teeth
- Permanent, because you never remove them, so they are an excellent choice for your active lifestyle
Dental implants are also extremely successful. In fact, they are the most successful surgical implant, boasting a success rate of over 95 percent, according to the American Academy of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons.
To learn more about the benefits of dental implants and how they can rebuild your smile, call Drs. Ron Solomon, Angela Burleson-Ott, and Bradley Girdwood of Cornerstone Dental Group in Cincinnati, OH. You can reach them by calling (513) 631-8920, so call now.
From birth to early adulthood, your child's teeth, gums and jaws develop at a rapid pace. And, for the most part, nature takes its course without our help.
But tooth decay can derail that development. The result of bacterial acid eroding enamel, tooth decay is the top cause for premature primary tooth loss in children. One particular form, early childhood caries (ECC), can rapidly spread from one tooth to another.
Many parents assume prematurely losing teeth that are destined to fall out soon anyway is inconsequential. But primary teeth play a critical role in the proper eruption of permanent teeth, serving as both placeholders and guides for those teeth developing just below them in the gums. A permanent tooth without this guidance can erupt out of alignment to create a poor bite that may require future orthodontics.
Being proactive about tooth decay lessens that risk—and the best time to start is when the first teeth begin to erupt. That's when you should begin their regular dental visits sometime around their first birthday.
Dental visits are an important defense against tooth decay. Besides routine dental cleanings, your child's dentist can offer various preventive treatments like sealants to stop decay from forming in the biting surfaces of back molars or topically applied fluoride to strengthen tooth enamel.
Daily home care is just as important in the fight against tooth decay. Oral hygiene should be a part of your child's daily life even before teeth: It's a good habit to wipe an infant's gums with a clean cloth after nursing. As teeth arrive, oral hygiene turns to brushing and flossing—perhaps the best defense of all against dental disease.
It's also important to watch their intake of sugar, a prime food source for bacteria that produce harmful acid. Instead, encourage a "tooth-friendly" diet of whole foods to keep teeth and gums healthy.
Even if they do develop tooth decay, there are effective treatments to minimize any damage and preserve affected primary teeth until they've served their purpose. By adopting these prevention strategies and prompt treatment, you can stay ahead of this destructive disease.
Root canals aren't just used to treat inflamed or infected teeth. The therapy, performed by Dr. Ron Solomon, Dr. Angela Burleson-Ott, and Dr. Bradley Girdwood of Cornerstone Dental Group in Cincinnati, OH, also helps cracked teeth.
How do cracks affect your teeth?
A crack in your tooth may seem like a minor problem. Unfortunately, even a small crack can weaken your tooth and make it more likely to break eventually. Cracks also allow bacteria to enter your teeth, causing tooth decay.
When a tooth is cracked, it may move a little when you chew. Over time, the motion of the tooth can irritate and inflame your tooth pulp. Unfortunately, once the soft pulp inside your tooth becomes inflamed, root canal therapy is the only option. Pulp inflammation can cause pain, particularly when you chew or eat or drink hot, cold, or sweet foods and drinks. If the pulp becomes abscessed, the bacterial infection can spread throughout your body via your bloodstream.
When are root canals needed?
Root canals may be recommended during your visit to the Cincinnati dental office if the crack has begun to irritate your pulp or your dentist is concerned that the crack may worsen. If the crack grows bigger and reaches the root of a tooth, removing the tooth is the only option. Fortunately, root canal therapy will help you avoid these problems.
The therapy involves removing the pulp and replacing it with a durable filling. Once the pulp is removed, your dentist will clean the tooth and add antibiotics to prevent infection. She'll also clean and shape the root canals, the small pathways that extend the length of the tooth. Adding a tiny post to the tooth strengthens it and provides extra support for the crown that will be added to the top of the tooth.
Before the crown is placed on your tooth, your dentist builds up the area around the post with composite resin, a flexible material that hardens when exposed to a curing light. Cementing the crown onto your tooth, the final step in the process, strengthens and supports your tooth.
Don't put your smile at risk. Restore your cracked teeth with root canals. Call (513) 631-8920 to schedule an appointment with your dentists in Cincinnati, OH, Dr. Solomon, Dr. Burleson-Ott, and Dr. Girdwood of Cornerstone Dental Group.
Dentists extract millions of teeth each year, mostly because of disease. But sometimes a healthy tooth is removed to gain a more favorable, long-term dental health outcome.
An example of this is extracting teeth for the sake of orthodontic treatment. This is often beneficial when treating bite problems caused by crowding, a condition in which not enough space on the jaw exists to accommodate all of the teeth coming in. When this happens, the limited space can force teeth out of their proper alignment.
Crowding also complicates correcting the bite problem with braces: As with the eruption phase, there's no available room for orthodontic movement. One solution that may arise after a detailed examination is to open up space on the jaw by removing some of the teeth.
Planning this kind of tooth extrication requires careful forethought with the end in mind—ultimately, the dental providers involved want the resulting appearance after braces to look as natural as possible. For that reason, dentists usually choose teeth for extraction that are outside of the "smile zone" (the teeth visible while smiling) like premolars and molars.
Additionally, dentists are concerned about bone loss after extracting the teeth. Bone often diminishes around empty tooth sockets, especially if those sockets were damaged during extraction. This loss in bone can weaken the jaw structure and cause significant problems while moving teeth with braces.
To avoid this, dentists take great care during tooth removal not to damage the socket. Additionally, they may place a bone graft within the socket immediately after removing the tooth, especially if the space will remain vacant for a significant period of time. A bone graft serves as a scaffold upon which new bone cells can form and accumulate.
After the extractions, the orthodontist may then proceed with correcting the bite. Patients may also need some form of prosthetic teeth to fill in the spaces while wearing braces. Often prosthetic teeth can be incorporated with the braces for a more natural look. After braces, any remaining gaps may require further restoration, either with dentures, bridges or, later in adulthood, dental implants.
Complex bite problems like crowding pose unique challenges in correcting them. But using techniques like tooth extraction can help achieve a successful and satisfactory outcome.
If you would like more information on treatments for bite problems, 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 “Tooth Removal for Orthodontic Reasons.”