Posts for: February, 2016
If you ever get out of the habit of daily brushing and flossing, you’re setting yourself up for dental disease. Neglecting oral hygiene allows bacterial plaque to build up on tooth surfaces, which can give rise to aggressive gum infections known collectively as periodontal (gum) disease.
Gum disease may first manifest itself as gingivitis, an inflammation of the outer gum tissues around teeth. Resuming hygiene habits could help reduce the infection if it’s detected early enough. If the infection has spread deeper below the gum line, though, brushing and flossing won’t be able to reach and remove the offending plaque — you’ll need our help with that.
The objective of any such treatment is the same as your daily brushing and flossing — remove plaque as well as hardened deposits (calculus) that cause disease. The most basic technique is called scaling in which we use specialized hand instruments (scalers) or ultrasonic equipment to loosen and remove the plaque and calculus from all tooth and gum surfaces.
For deeper plaque, we may need to use a technique called root planing. As its name implies, we use equipment similar to scalers to shave or “plane” plaque, calculus, bacteria or other toxins from the roots that have become ingrained in their surfaces.
These procedures are often carried out with local anesthesia to ensure patient comfort and allow us to be as meticulous as possible with plaque and calculus removal. It’s imperative that we remove as much plaque and calculus as possible, and which often involves more than one session. This is because as the gum tissues become less inflamed it allows us to access more plaque-infested areas during subsequent sessions.
Hopefully, these techniques will arrest the infection and restore good health to gum tissues. It’s then important for you to recommit and follow through on a renewed daily hygiene regimen to reduce the chances of re-infection that could lead to more serious problems and potential tooth loss.
If you would like more information on treating periodontal (gum) disease, 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 “Root Planing.”
Find out how this simple cosmetic procedure can restore your smile
It’s annoying when little discolorations or cracks in our teeth seem to affect the overall appearance of our smiles. Luckily your Chatham cosmetic dentists Dr. Domenic Riccobono and Dr. Vicki Cohn are here to provide an array of cosmetic treatments like dental bonding that could repair small flaws and improve your smile.
Stained teeth: Not all stains and discolorations will respond as effectively to professional whitening treatment. Internal stains caused by excessive fluoride exposure, direct trauma or taking certain medications are best treated through other cosmetic treatments like bonding. Plus, some patients experience tooth sensitivity and don’t feel comfortable getting teeth whitening. In this case, bonding allows your dentist in Chatham, NY to cover over these stains with this tooth-colored resin.
Chipped teeth: Whether eating hard foods or through an injury or accident there are many reasons a chipped tooth can occur. It’s important to prevent the tooth from sustaining further damage, and the bonding material will allow us to restore the tooth back to its normal appearance.
Misshapen teeth: Another benefit to composite resin is that it can also change the shape and size of your teeth. Bonding can make teeth look more even or add more width or length.
Gaps between teeth: If you have small gaps between teeth it can certainly take away from your smile’s appearance. You may think your only option is braces, but if you are only dealing with minimal gaps we may be able to cover these gaps using dental bonding.
Crooked teeth: While bonding can’t fix more serious crookedness, if teeth are slightly out of alignment you may not need to consider braces as your only option. With bonding resin, we can reshape your teeth to make them appear straighter and more even.
Crunching down on ice or experiencing a facial injury can leave you with small fractures or cracks in your teeth. While these cracks may be so small that they don’t actually impact your smile’s function they can affect your appearance. Luckily, we can use dental bonding to hide these cracks.
Want to get dental bonding? Ready to find out if it’s right for you? Then turn to your Chatham dentist at Countryside Dental today. Call our office to schedule your consultation.
Magician Michael Grandinetti mystifies and astonishes audiences with his sleight of hand and mastery of illusion. But when he initially steps onto the stage, it’s his smile that grabs the attention. “The first thing… that an audience notices is your smile; it’s what really connects you as a person to them,” Michael told an interviewer.
He attributes his audience-pleasing smile to several years of orthodontic treatment as a teenager to straighten misaligned teeth, plus a lifetime of good oral care. “I’m so thankful that I did it,” he said about wearing orthodontic braces. “It was so beneficial. And… looking at the path I’ve chosen, it was life-changing.”
Orthodontics — the dental subspecialty focused on treating malocclusions (literally “bad bites”) — can indeed make life-changing improvements. Properly positioned teeth are integral to the aesthetics of any smile, and a smile that’s pleasing to look at boosts confidence and self-esteem and makes a terrific first impression. Studies have even linked having an attractive smile with greater professional success.
There can also be functional benefits such as improved biting/chewing and speech, and reduced strain on jaw muscles and joints. Additionally, well-aligned teeth are easier to clean and less likely to trap food particles that can lead to decay.
The Science Behind the Magic
There are more options than ever for correcting bites, but all capitalize on the fact that teeth are suspended in individual jawbone sockets by elastic periodontal ligaments that enable them to move. Orthodontic appliances (commonly called braces or clear aligners) place light, controlled forces on teeth in a calculated fashion to move them into their new desired alignment.
The “gold standard” in orthodontic treatment remains the orthodontic band for posterior (back) teeth and the bonded bracket for front teeth. Thin, flexible wires threaded through the brackets create the light forces needed for repositioning. Traditionally the brackets have been made of metal, but for those concerned about the aesthetics, they can also be made out of a clear material. Lingual braces, which are bonded to the back of teeth instead of the front, are another less visible option. The most discrete appliance is the removable clear aligner, which consists of a progression of custom-made clear trays that reposition teeth incrementally.
How’s that for a disappearing act?!
If you would like more information about orthodontic treatment please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about the subject by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “The Magic of Orthodontics.”