When orthodontic work is required but major bite corrections are not, patients may want to consider short-term orthodontics. These types of braces offer permanent improvements to the positions of teeth that are only slightly misaligned rather than severely crooked. Here are some of the most popular options in this category.
Invisalign Express uses the same types of aligners that Invisalign Full and Invisalign Teen use. The aligners are clear, plastic, and comfortable, as well as nearly invisible when worn. However, unlike its full-term counterparts, Express uses only a small number of aligners to make minor bite corrections in a few months. Depending on the patient, Express typically takes three to six months, but can last up to nine months if extensions are necessary.
Six-Month Smiles are metal braces that take just a half-year to improve the bite. Like other metal braces, this treatment uses brackets bonded to the teeth and wires that are threaded through those brackets. Because this treatment is designed to adjust the positions of front teeth, it is often recommended for patients who are focused on a better-looking smile. When patients need more extensive bite correction or need rear teeth moved, our dentist may recommend another type of braces.
Orthodontic treatment is available for patients with all levels of bite irregularities, including minimal needs. Short-term braces can offer a major savings of time and money in these cases. At a consultation with our orthodontist, patients can learn more about short-term braces at our office.
Back to Blog
We often hear about how important at home and professional dental care can be to achieve and maintain optimal oral health, but what about what we consume? Here are various foods you can consume daily to clean your teeth and improve your dental health naturally.
When it comes to eating celery, most people tend to complain about the pesky “strings” found in it. But did you know those strings can act as a natural dental floss? The crunchiness of the celery is also good for naturally scraping away leftover particles and bacteria in the mouth. Can’t brush your teeth after lunch at work? Pack a few pieces of celery!
Almonds are another naturally abrasive and crunchy food that can be great for cleaning debris and bacteria from your teeth. Almonds are also a great source of calcium and protein which are essential for optimal oral health. Looking for a healthy snack? Pack ¼ cup of almonds to bring along with you!
We’ve all heard how an apple a day can keep the doctor away, but did you know they can also naturally clean your teeth? The fibrous texture of apples helps remove debris, particles, and bacteria from the mouth and can also product saliva to wash it away. Pack a few slices in everyone’s lunches for a natural way to scrub their teeth after lunch.
Much like celery and apples, carrots are crunchy and extremely fibrous making them an excellent snack to naturally clean teeth. Eating carrots can also increase saliva production in the mouth, assisting in washing down particles and bacteria and reducing your risk of cavity formation.
Yogurt has been back in the spotlight quite a bit lately due to its numerous “health benefits” courtesy of probiotics (a beneficial kind of bacteria), calcium and protein. Protein and calcium are essential for optimal health, and the probiotics found in yogurt can actually reduce the “bad” cavity-forming bacteria in your mouth. We recommend selecting a no sugar added option to ensure it is as healthy as it can be.
While water is not a “food,” it is necessary for our oral and overall health. Water is a sugar-free, calorie-free option that can help remove debris, particles, and bacteria from the mouth. We recommend drinking a glass after each meal (including snacks) to reduce your risk of decay and naturally clean your smile.
Just hearing the words “root canal” can cause pain. Typically, the root canal is thought to be the absolute worst dental procedure you can ever hope to avoid. But what happens when your root canal fails? And what does that even mean?
Believe it or not, however rare, root canals can fail. When this happens, it’s time for endodontic retreatment.
What Causes a Root Canal to Fail?
A root canal can fail anywhere from months to years after the original procedure is done. Here are some of the common causes of a root canal failure:
- Too much saliva in the procedure area
- Possibly some of the infection was missed
- There was a long delay in placing the dental crown
- A crack in the crown or tooth allows a new infection to enter the tooth
When it comes down to it, the root canal fails in one of three ways: the dentist made a mistake during the procedure and failed to remove all of the infection, something prevented the tooth from healing properly, or the tooth has become infected again because something caused it to become unprotected.
What is Endodontic Retreatment?
Endodontic retreatment is your only hope to save the tooth if retreatment is an option at all. You can recognize a failed root canal by new pain or a visible crack in the tooth or crown.
The endodontic retreatment goes like this:
1. The tooth is reopened and cleaned
2. Your dentist will carefully look for roots in the tooth that are infected again or were overlooked the first time
3. The infection will be removed
4. A temporary filling is placed in your tooth
5. A new crown is fitted over your tooth to protect it
For anyone who is missing a tooth or even missing multiple teeth, dental implant surgery is a great alternative to outdated dentures or bridgework. Dental implants offer a long-lasting alternative that can drastically improve your smile as well as improve daily activities like chewing.
Some patients don’t consider dental implants because they incorrectly view it as a complex and painful procedure, but it is relatively straightforward and has many benefits. A dental implant is the next best thing to a natural tooth and can help to prevent bone damage that dentures or bridgework may cause. Dental implants are the closest thing you can get to real teeth and mimic the natural relationship of a tooth to the jawbone through a titanium post fused to the jawbone.
Prime candidates usually have damaged or missing teeth but still maintain good oral health. An implant is not a cure for all ailments and requires proper oral care. Through x-rays and physical examinations, your dentist will be able to plan the location of the implant.
After the patient is sedated and under anesthesia, an incision is made in the gum in order to expose the jawbone underneath. A small pilot hole is made in the jaw, and once the position is verified, the hole is made larger little by little until the titanium post of the implant is inserted into the jawbone. The incision is closed, and a process called osseointegration is allowed to occur over the next several months. During that healing time, the implant will fuse to the jawbone and mimic the natural relationship between a tooth and the jawbone.
Caring for implants is similar to caring for your other teeth. Be sure to brush and floss consistently, and your dental implants should last at least 10 years.
Some things that we will be discussing may be very loosely defined as “emergencies.” However, some of these things really are an emergency and must be addressed right away, or serious troubles can be developed.
Cut, or Bitten Lip, Tongue, or Cheek
This is one of those things that maybe our children will think is a serious emergency, but when it comes to their overall health, is something that can be dealt with quickly and will heal very soon. However, at the moment, it may very well feel like an emergency to everyone involved.
If you or your child have a cut lip, tongue, or cheek and it is bleeding, it can become serious depending on the severity. Apply pressure with a clean cloth or gauze. You should also apply ice to any bruised area. If the bleeding cannot be controlled within about 20 minutes using simple pressure, then the case may very well be serious, and you should seek medical attention promptly.
Knocked out, or Broken Permanent Tooth
This situation is not life-threatening, but when it comes to the future of your smile, it is indeed an emergency, and prompt action must be taken. You may wash the tooth, but do not handle it unnecessarily and do not handle it by the root portion. Try to put the tooth back into place and hold it there using a clean cloth or gauze. If it is not possible to put the tooth back into place, then you can carry it in a jar of milk or water. You must see the dentist right away; a tooth can still be saved if you rush to the dentist sooner rather than later.
If the tooth is chipped or broken, rinse any dirt off of the broken fragments and apply a cold compress to the injured area. Time is of the essence in this situation as well. Hurrying to the dentist can mean saving your tooth.
Everyone wants the best-looking smile. One of the things that contribute to a great smile is the color of your teeth. Most people strive for the whitest shade possible. There are many products available today that promise to whiten and brighten your teeth. Which one should you choose?
Teeth Whitening Strips
Teeth whitening strips are also a good alternative if you do not want to go to a dentist or do not have a dental provider. You can find strips at most grocery or convenience stores. These strips come in different shades of white and different processing times. These strips can be a one-time use or used several times.
Toothpaste & Powders
Toothpaste or powders that promise many shades after one-time use are false. It is a process that takes time to progress to the shade you want. Most people are promised great results with these simple products are very disappointed. It is important to whiten teeth in sessions or slowly to prevent sensitivities or breakdown of enamel.
For dramatic results, baking soda whitening does not work. Baking soda does a great job of cleaning surfaces and breaking down build-up on teeth. This may give the illusion of whiter teeth, however, does not actually work as great for people with very stained teeth or those looking for a dramatic difference.
Peroxide washes are similar to baking soda whitening. They are helpful, but they do not give most people the desired dramatic results you would hope for. The uncomfortable taste is not helpful or worth the whitening that one expects.
The fastest way to whiten your teeth is by going to a professional dentist and getting your teeth whitened using their technology. Going to a dentist can guarantee that you can communicate the level of teeth whitening you want. This method is recommended and is trusted by many, as there are people trained to perform this procedure.
Getting a dental crown can help restore the aesthetic beauty, strength, and functionality of an impaired tooth. Crowns have been around for decades in various forms such as wood or gold, but the ones that are placed today are made of durable porcelain or composite resin, so they better resemble natural teeth.
Getting a Dental Crown
Dental crowns, or a tooth cap, can repair your smile both cosmetically and restoratively. For restoration, a crown will bring back strength to a tooth weakened by decay, damage or root canal therapy. A severely cracked or broken tooth cannot be repaired with a traditional filling. There is often not enough healthy enamel left to place a filling, and the material is not as strong as a crown. In this situation, a dental crown can be crafted to fill in the missing structure and add strength.
Lost Tooth or Teeth
Tooth extraction is always the last resort. A healthy jaw requires teeth for stability and structure. A lost tooth or teeth leave space in the mouth and a gap in the jaw bone where roots are missing. The empty bone eventually deteriorates when it is not supporting a tooth root. A dental crown will usually cover the root or cap a tooth that has been treated with root canal therapy, to encourage the bone to thrive.
Tooth crowns are also placed over dental implant posts. The crown is the visible prosthetic that serves as a replacement tooth. Here, a dental crown supports both the bone and surrounding teeth.
Caps for Cosmetic Repair
In cosmetic dentistry, tooth caps are used to restore beautiful smiles, Broken, misshapen, badly discolored, cracked, or chipped teeth can be enhanced with dental crowns. Cosmetic crowns are most commonly used for the following purposes:
- Repairing a damaged tooth
- Covering enamel loss resulting from bruxism
- Masking tooth discoloration that cannot be corrected with teeth bleaching
- Reinforcing a weakened tooth after root canal treatment
- Protecting and strengthening a severely decayed tooth repaired with a large filling
- Halting the further spread of decay
- Fixing a tooth that cannot withstand composite bonding
Dental Crown Procedure
The application procedure is completed in two in-house visits. During the initial stage, the tooth is prepared for placement of the crown. The affected tooth is cleaned and reshaped under local anesthesia. A 3-D image is created of the tooth using CEREC equipment. This is how the final crown is made. Once the milling process is finished, the cap is fixed in place and polished.
At Antoine Dental Center, tooth crowns are not reserved only for royalty. All of our patients can receive tooth repair fit for a king, using state-of-the-art CEREC technology. In one visit we can create durable and attractive dental crowns that restore the strength, health, and stability of imperfect teeth.
We all dread the idea of losing our teeth as we get older, or even worse, while we are still young. Thankfully, you never have to lose your teeth if you just follow the safely kept secret to keeping your teeth for life. First of all, the secret is that there is no secret. Basically, everything that you need to know about keeping your teeth healthy is public knowledge, but there are multiple pieces to the equation.
Brush Thoroughly and Often
If you want your teeth to be healthy and last a long time, then you should brush your them two times a day. Ideally, they should be brushed in the morning and at night so that bacteria don’t sit unattended to on the surface of your teeth for long periods of time. Brush your teeth for two to three minutes at a time, and make sure that you cover every tooth.
Many people today forget to floss at all, let alone daily. Flossing doesn’t seem easy, but your dentist doesn’t tell you to do it for no reason. When you have your dental exams, trust me, your dentist knows whether or not you floss. Gum disease goes hand in hand with forgetting to floss regularly. Flossing on at least a daily basis helps you keep healthy gums and will reduce bleeding of the gums in the long run.
Rinsing with mouthwash does more for you than simply freshening your breath. Giving your mouth a good rinse can rid your mouth of potentially harmful bacteria from places in your mouth that your toothbrush can’t remove. If you drink sugary drinks, rinsing with water afterward can keep most of that sugar from off of your teeth.
It’s also important to keep your appointments for your regular checkups with your dentist. Nobody knows how to keep your teeth healthy better than your dentist.
Teething usually starts in babies between the ages of 3 to 6 months. The restlessness and fussiness observed in most babies are caused by pain due to the forceful breaking out of new teeth through their gums. Some nights, you’ll find it difficult to get enough sleep. However, there are steps you can take to reduce the symptoms and ease your precious babies through their first harrowing experience.
Be Aware of Teething Signs and Symptoms
Some babies typically exhibit the following symptoms while teething:
- Excessive drooling
- Inflamed gums
- Incessant crying
- Trouble sleeping
- Biting on any object to relieve the pressure on their gum
- Unable to eat because their mouth hurts
- General restlessness
- A slight increase in temperature
However, a very high temperature is not normally associated with teething, and you should contact your pediatrician if your baby has a high-grade fever.
Keep Your Child Comfortable with These Tips
You should help your baby, and yourself, through this ordeal by some proven techniques:
- Massage their gums: Gently rub baby’s gums with a finger or clean towel.
- Use teething rings or toys. Give them a clean, cool hard object to chew on. The pressure relieves their pain, and the coolness is soothing.
- Relieve pain. Consult your baby’s doctor about the use of pain relief if the child is still inconsolable. Do avoid teething medications not prescribed by the doctor as they can be harmful.
Once Teeth Appear, Take Proper Care of Them
- Dentists recommend taking your child to a dentist once the first tooth erupts and no later than their first birthday.
- Using a small quantity of toothpaste, brush your child’s teeth twice a day once the first tooth appears.
- Your child’s teeth are at risk of Baby Bottle Decay which is caused by frequent exposure to sugary liquids. Cavities can occur when the sugars pool around the teeth for long periods of time. Therefore, babies should not be allowed to sleep with a bottle of juice or formula. Ensure to wipe baby’s gum or teeth with a clean, soft cloth after each feeding.
- Babies also need fluoride even before the first tooth appears. Fluoride builds up the teeth enamel, especially in the formative stages. Confirm with your local water authority if the tap water in your home contains fluoride. Dentists might recommend supplements if fluoride is not readily available in the child’s drinking water.
Teething in babies, even though discomforting, is a welcome stage in the child’s development. Proper care will ensure this passes with as little fuss as possible.
Do you suffer from one or more missing teeth? Missing out on all the great holiday foods? At Antoine Dental Center in Houston, we are proud to offer a variety of dental implant options for patients that are interested in permanently restoring not only the appearance of their smile but also its function.
For patients with missing teeth, eating certain foods can be extremely challenging and even at times, painful. Dentures is one teeth replacement option that can be used to restore some functionality. However, even with dentures, there are quite a few foods that are still on the “do-not-eat” list.
About Our Houston Dental Implants
In recent years, dental implants have become one of the most popular options for replacing missing teeth. The reason? They are the closest we can get to a brand new set of natural teeth.
A dental implant is comprised of three parts: the implant, the abutment, and the prosthetic crown. The implant itself is a small post which serves as an artificial tooth root and is attached to the jawbone. The abutment is used to attach the prosthetic crown to the implant once it is healed. The prosthetic crown is the visible “tooth” and is designed to look, feel and function just like a natural tooth.
Dental implants have the ability to replace one or more teeth at a time, depending on your preference and your ultimate dental goals. For those looking to replace multiple or all of their teeth, dental implants can be used to secure a dental bridge, a partial or even a denture. Opting for implant-supported dental appliances will reduce the risk of them coming loose, remove the need for adhesives and allow the patient to enjoy the foods they once did before.