What You Need to Know About Dental Implants

A missing tooth (or teeth) can pose a lot of problems when you eat. It can also make you feel bad about your appearance, lower your self-confidence, and make you hesitant to talk or smile. That’s why it’s wise to fix oral problems before they impact your life. If you’re wondering about treatments that can solve your issue, include dental implants among them. This post will walk you through all the important things you should know before choosing them.

What Are Dental Implants?  

Dental implants are artificial tooth roots made from durable titanium metal that are surgically inserted into your jawbone. Once the roots are attached, replacement teeth are fixed on them. Hence, these implants act as anchors to keep the artificial teeth in place.

These dental implants are generally of two types: endosteal and subperiosteal. The more common endosteal implant is fixed into the bone; the subperiosteal is located on the bone. This is suitable for people who have sufficient bone height and can’t wear dentures.

Who Can Get Them?

Adults can get dental implants provided they have healthy gums and enough bone to accommodate them. Consult a dentist to make sure they’re right for you. If you do choose them, make sure you follow these steps:

  • Maintain good oral hygiene
  • Be prepared for dental surgery
  • Limit or avoid smoking

How Is the Procedure Conducted?

Want to understand the procedure going in? Keep reading.

  1. Dental Implants

If you have a missing tooth, dental implants are a good choice. These are artificial roots made of titanium metal inserted into the jawbone to replace the roots of natural teeth. An artificial tooth is fixed to the implant which holds the new tooth in place. These dental appliances look natural and make your teeth appear real. They also provide comfort, improve speech and help in eating. Once attached, you don’t have to take the effort to open and clean them. Thus, they’re a convenient option and can last for many years, provided you take good care of them. That’s why can’t forget to brush, floss and rinse with mouthwash. Treat them like your real teeth and you’ll see the difference. However, don’t forget to visit your dentist for regular check-ups.

  1. Extracting the tooth

Your dentist will use anesthesia to numb the area before extracting your broken or chipped tooth. How long it takes varies from patient to patient and is partly based on the severity of the damage.

  1. Grafting the socket

Grafting is necessary if your jawbone isn’t strong enough to hold the implant in place. This provides a solid base for the artificial root. The recovery time for this stage again varies. For some, it can take several months before fixing the implants while for others it can be done on the day of surgery.

  1. Waiting for bone growth

Some patients require time to recover after grafting. If the bone isn’t dense enough, it will be difficult for it to support the implant.

  1. Insertion of the implant

Once there’s enough bone, the implants will be fixed to your jawbone, after you’ve been anesthetized of course. Thereafter, an incision will be made to highlight the bone underneath that will hold the implant in place. Then, space is built for an artificial root using a specialized drill where the implant will be inserted into the bone. The dentist will close the gums and stitch them.

  1. Insertion of the artificial tooth

Once the root is fixed, the new tooth will be fixed on the implant and will appear like your natural tooth.

What Are Its Advantages?

With dental implants, you’re sure to enjoy the following advantages:

  • Replacing your missing tooth will improve your speech and appearance.
  • Dental implants will make eating and chewing more comfortable.
  • They’re as convenient as they are removable, unlike dentures.
  • They can last a lifetime with proper maintenance.

What Are Its Disadvantages?

Dental implants can be expensive, with prices ranging from $900 to $3,000 for a single implant. Moreover, as it’s a surgery, minor injuries can cause pain and discomfort in your gums. Sinus problems can also crop up, especially if the implant is in the upper jaw and protrudes into one of the sinus cavities.

Important Things to Remember

Here are a few things you should know before getting dental implants:

  • You will need to visit your dentist more than once to complete the procedure, and for check-ups.
  • Insurance generally doesn’t cover dental implants, unlike other replacement teeth.
  • You need to maintain it like your own teeth to make it last a lifetime.
  • These surgeries can sometimes fail, especially if the root doesn’t bond to the jawbone properly.

Handy Maintenance Tips

You take care of dental implants just like you take care of your real teeth, so brush and floss daily. Don’t forget to rinse after every meal to ensure there’s no food stuck in your gums or between teeth. Furthermore, remember to visit your dentist for check-ups at least once a month to ensure the implant’s in place and there are no hidden injuries.

Dental implants are one of the best solutions if you have a missing tooth or teeth. Though expensive, it’s a convenient, easy and permanent solution. And you don’t need to remove it for cleaning or maintenance. Instead, it will be just like your real teeth. So, make sure you maintain good oral hygiene to make it an investment that lasts a lifetime.

5 Cosmetic Dentistry Procedures to Improve Your Smile

Their smile is usually the first thing that we notice about someone. In fact, when we introduce ourselves to a new person, we usually greet them with a smile in order to make a good impression. While there are many people blessed with a naturally beautiful smile, others may have to put in a little more effort to enhance theirs. This is especially applicable to those with discoloured, broken, chipped, crooked or misaligned teeth. We’re here with a great solution: cosmetic dentistry procedures.  These are unique treatments to improve the condition of your teeth and make your smile attractive. They will also increase your confidence and you’ll no longer shy away from greeting others with a smile. This post will walk you through five important procedures sure to make a big difference to your appearance.

Get a Smile Makeover with These Amazing Cosmetic Dentistry Procedures  

Here are a few essential dental treatments that will do wonders for your teeth and improve your smile.

  1. Dental Implants

If you have a missing tooth, dental implants are a good choice. These are artificial roots made of titanium metal inserted into the jawbone to replace the roots of natural teeth. An artificial tooth is fixed to the implant which holds the new tooth in place. These dental appliances look natural and make your teeth appear real. They also provide comfort, improve speech and help in eating. Once attached, you don’t have to take the effort to open and clean them. Thus, they’re a convenient option and can last for many years, provided you take good care of them. That’s why can’t forget to brush, floss and rinse with mouthwash. Treat them like your real teeth and you’ll see the difference. However, don’t forget to visit your dentist for regular check-ups.

  1. Dental Crowns

Do you have a chipped or damaged tooth? Dental crowns can be used to restore its shape, function and appearance. Also known as caps, they’re placed over a tooth to cover it, increase its strength and improve its look. But before you go ahead and choose these dental appliances, you should research their wide variety to help you choose better. These include stainless steel, metal, porcelain fused to metal, all-resin, all-ceramic or all-porcelain. Each is unique which is why you should consult your dentist before selecting one based on your requirements. Your tooth may feel sensitive for a few days as you take time to get used to these dental appliances. If the problem persists, you should immediately visit your dentist. Crowns can also come loose and fall off so make sure you take proper care of them to avoid unnecessary problems that will bring you discomfort.

  1. Dental Bridges

As the name suggests, dental bridges bond the gap formed by one or more missing teeth. It’s basically a false tooth, called a pontic, that is supported by the abutment teeth on either side of the gap. Though pontics can be made from a variety of materials, including gold, they’re usually crafted from porcelain to blend with the colour of natural teeth. There is a huge variety to choose from, including traditional, cantilever, Maryland and implant supported. Each is distinct which is why when you have a missing tooth, you should consult your dentist to find out what treatment is best for you. If you don’t fix a lost tooth, other teeth will move out of their positions which will affect your appearance and potentially make chewing difficult.

  1. Veneers

Veneers are ultra-thin, custom-made shells of tooth-coloured materials primarily designed to cover the front surface of teeth. These dental appliances are used to fix minor cosmetic problems to enhance your appearance. They’re also permanent, which is why you should weigh their pros and cons before considering them. Though they replace damaged enamel, they can increase tooth sensitivity. Also, if you have tooth decay or gum problems, it’s best to avoid them. They can also dislodge and fall off which is why you cannot clench or grind your teeth. Choose wisely, though, as they’re more costly than composite resin bonding.

  1. Teeth Whitening

If you have dark-coloured or stained teeth, teeth whitening, also known as teeth bleaching, is for you. You can either consult your dentist and get it done in one visit or use over-the-counter teeth-whitening kits. Both are effective so select the one that suits you best. In either case, be diligent about brushing, flossing and rinsing after every meal.

These five important cosmetic dentistry procedures are sure to bring positive results. Each is unique, with its own advantages and disadvantages, so consult your dentist prior to selecting the one most suitable for you. Then watch your smile and confidence bloom.

10 Important Things You Should Know Before Getting Braces

Does your smile lack confidence because you have misaligned teeth? Then it’s time you got braces. Though visible, which may be problematic for some, they’re one of the best ways to straighten your crowded teeth for a pleasing appearance. Also, you can wear them at any age which makes braces a versatile option. However, there are a few things you should know beforehand in order to make an informed decision.

Important Things You (Probably) Didn’t Know About Braces  

  1. Age is not a factor

Almost anyone over the age of 10 can wear braces. Though teens and tweens are mostly seen with these dental appliances, that doesn’t mean adults can’t use them as well. However, because they exert extra pressure on your gums, it is vital to have tough and flexible gum tissue.

  1. They do more than straighten teeth

That’s why when you visit your dentist, they will likely ask you about jaw pain, bleeding gums and jagged teeth. Be patient when they check your mouth as the type of braces you get will be based on their assessment of your oral health.

  1. Can fix uneven bites

It’s important for your dentist to check your bite to ensure that your teeth align. This is because when rows of teeth meet, they should not grind or exhibit abrasions. In fact, there shouldn’t be any gap at all along the line of your teeth. All of these considerations are necessary because bite issues can lead to TMJ-related headaches and problems with speaking and chewing.

  1. Costs may vary

Braces aren’t cheap, but prices vary depending on an array of factors such as your location, age, dental clinic, brace type and dental health.

  1. The average treatment period is two years

The average duration of treatment with braces is two years, although this may vary depending on the condition of your teeth. If you are looking for a faster process, consult with your dentist as there are minor surgeries available to fix your jawline and straighten teeth. These faster therapies have more risk factors, so it’s wiser to choose metal braces that take more time but are safer.

  1. They may be painful

Getting used to braces is not a pain-free process. After the initial fitting, you will feel new sensations and pressure against your teeth. This may cause aching and soreness in your gums and lips as your mouth gets used to the new appliance. The adjustment period can last up to two weeks, so your dentist may advise you to take mild painkillers. In addition, you may be instructed to rinse your mouth with salt water to alleviate the pressure.

  1. Minor lisping is common

Wearing braces may give you a small lisp, although this often disappears as you get used to them. Just remember that this is the first step to getting perfect teeth.

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  1. Your lips may look different

Braces push your lips out, making them look more pronounced. You may also cut your lips which is why it’s a good idea to use orthodontic wax. This is applied to the brackets on your teeth in the early days to safeguard your lips from abrasions or rubbing.

  1. Food can get stuck

Braces come with metal wires that trap food particles. That is why some foods should be strictly avoided, including corn chips, popcorn, candies, pretzels, peanut butter, nuts and hard vegetables. You should also steer clear of acidic items like lemons or soda to prevent discolouration.

  1. Flossing will be difficult

Flossing, though necessary for good oral hygiene, can be difficult with braces. But there are options. Flossing threaders help pull regular floss through teeth, while water flossers use a stream of water to remove leftover food particles.

From straightening your teeth to fixing your bite, braces can beautify your smile. Though they may be painful at first, the end result will amaze you. Your dentist will guide you through the procedure after checking your oral health. They will also choose the brace type based on your needs to ensure you get the smile of your dreams.

Here’s What You Need to Know About Cavities

Who hasn’t dreaded getting their cavity report from the dentist as a kid? Cavities are far from fatal, but they can lead to severe toothache and even tooth loss, affecting your life and appearance. Most people arguably know what a cavity is, are practically unaware of its causes, symptoms, and ways to prevent it. If you are among them, this blog summarizes everything you need to know about dental cavities.

Everything You Need to Know About Cavities  

What Are Cavities?

Cavities are permanently damaged areas in the hard surface of teeth that develop into tiny holes if not treated in time. Frequent snacking, drinking sugary beverages and not brushing your teeth are the primary habits that lead to cavities. Curtailing these practices and taking proper care of your teeth will prevent the damage from affecting deeper dental layers.And you’re not alone: cavities are common among infants, children, teenagers and adults alike.

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Causes

Cavities occur due to tooth decay, but the process does not happen in a day. Following are the ways how tooth decay develops:

  1. Formation of plaque

Plaque forms first. This is a clear sticky coating on your teeth that occurs due to consuming too much sugar and starch. Not cleaning your teeth is another reason behind cavity formation. When these foods are not cleaned away properly and remain stuck to teeth, bacteria begin feeding on them, leading to plaque. If not treated in time, they will harden under or above your gum line. Known as tartar, this shield for bacteria is difficult to remove.

  1. How plaque attacks

Plaque contains acids that remove minerals from your tooth enamel. This erosion leads to tiny holes or openings in the enamel which is the first stage of cavities. Once your enamel is affected, the acid and bacteria reach the next layer: the dentin. This layer is softer than enamel and is less resistant to acid, causing tooth sensitivity.

  1. How the damage continues

With the development of tooth decay, the acid and bacteria reach deeper into the inner tooth layer, known as the pulp, which consists of blood vessels and nerves. This becomes swollen, and as there is no place to expand, the nerves become pressed, causing pain and discomfort.

Symptoms

Cavity symptoms vary based on their location and the extent of the damage. When cavities begin, you may not experience any symptoms. However, as the decay develops, you may experience any of these symptoms:

  • Toothache
  • Tooth sensitivity
  • Mild pain when eating sweet foods or hot/cold beverages
  • Visible holes on teeth
  • White, brown or black staining on the surface of the tooth
  • Slight pain when you bite any hard food

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Prevention Tips

Though cavities are common among infants and adults, here are a few ways you can prevent them.

  1. Brush with fluoride toothpaste

You should brush your teeth twice a day and after every meal with fluoride toothpaste. Apart from brushing, flossing is equally important to cleaning between teeth. You can use an interdental cleaner if you are not comfortable flossing.

  1. Rinse your mouth

After every meal, you should rinse your mouth with water and occasionally use mouthwash containing fluoride. In this way, you protect your teeth against tooth decay.

  1. Consider dental sealants

Do you have nooks or crannies in your back teeth? If so, then you should immediately conceal them with dental sealants to prevent food accumulating. With these thin plastic coatings, you can protect your teeth from developing cavities. These can last up to 10 years if you take good care of them.

  1. Avoiding frequent snacking and sipping

When you munch on food or sip beverages at frequent intervals, your mouth bacteria create acids that damage your tooth enamel. Hence, your teeth are under constant attack which is why it is wiser to drink water than to consume foods or other beverages often.

  1. Eating tooth-healthy foods

There are many foods crucial for healthy teeth. Calcium-rich foods such as fat-free milk, cheese, yogurt, salmon, almonds and green vegetables are good examples. Avoid citrus fruits, bread and dried fruits as these are the worst for your teeth.

  1. Visiting your dentist regularly

Though regular brushing and flossing are good for oral hygiene, some foods stay stuck between your teeth. This requires professional cleaning, and that’s why you should visit your dentist at least twice a year; once a month if you can. Regular dentist visits also mean that oral issues can be detected at an early stage, saving you from unnecessary pain. That’s a summary of everything that you need to know about cavities. Though not life-threatening, you should take proper care of your teeth to prevent them. That means daily brushing and avoiding frequent snacking. Otherwise, we all know that toothaches can incur excruciating pain. Finally, don’t forget to visit your dentist to prevent and treat any dental problem early.