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.
The first step is to know what treatments and procedures your dental health benefits cover. Find a dentist who accepts your insurance plan. For example, some dental HMOs have their own pool of member dental offices, which limits your choices. With a PPO, it may affect your copayment if you find a dentist outside of the network.
Additional tips for choosing a dentist include:
Ask Around for a Dentist Office Recommendation – Word of mouth is the best approach. Talk to friends, family, co-workers or neighbors and ask if they are pleased with their dentist, and why. Your family doctor may also provide a referral. Another option is to research local dentists listed as members with the ADA, AGD or a local dental association.
Factor in Dentist Location – Accessibility is important. Do you want your dentist office to be close to home or near your workplace? Consider your schedule and how flexible you can be when making appointments. Do you need a dentist location that serves patients on evenings and Saturdays?
Schedule a Consultation – Meet each new prospect for a consultation. Once you have your list of dentists that meet your criteria, call or visit a few dental offices before scheduling an appointment. Ask if the dentist is a member of a national dental organization, like the American Dental Association (ADA) and how far in advance should routine cleanings and check-ups be scheduled. Also, find out which treatments and procedures are performed in-office and which are referred to an outside dental professional.
After each appointment, evaluate your visit. Is the dental office neat, clean and well-organized? Is the dental staff courteous and friendly? If you have kids, does this dentist location child-friendly? Do they manage your private information discreetly?
Consider the following questions after you leave each dentist location: Does this dentist office offer convenient hours? Is it conveniently located? Are the dentist and staff easy to talk to, and ask questions? Would you trust the dental professionals’ treatment recommendations or referrals?
A good-looking grin is eye-catching and memorable. It is a sign of wellness, sincerity, warmth, youth, and success. An attractive smile is an asset in all aspects of life. So, if you are not happy with the appearance of your teeth, you may be wearing that smile upside down. Like with many other satisfied patients, cosmetic dentistry can help flip that frown the right way around.
Cosmetic Dentistry Procedures
There are so many cosmetic dentistry procedures available to sculpt, shape and reinvent your smile in a more visually pleasing way. With minimally invasive techniques and a few simple steps, you can feel proud to show how good you feel.
Popular cosmetic treatment options:
- White Composite Fillings – Natural looking tooth-colored materials can be used to repair teeth cavities. Your dentist may use a composite resin, or a porcelain crown, inlay or onlay to restore a decayed tooth.
- Teeth Whitening – Tooth staining is hard to avoid, and it happens for many reasons. Highly pigmented and acidic foods and drinks, smoking, and aging are all factors that discolor teeth. Professional teeth whitening is a strong bleaching process that improves the look of stained or discolored teeth. The solution used in your dentist’s office is more powerful than the agents contained in over-the-counter whitening kits.
- Veneers – Custom-made, tooth-colored veneers are thin, composite or ceramic shells that are bonded to teeth. Crafted to resemble natural enamel, veneers cover stained, crooked or oddly shaped teeth, or fill-in spaces.
- Dental Braces – To correct bite problems, crooked or overcrowded teeth, dental braces may be the solution. Gone are the days when wearing braces had to mean displaying bulky metal brackets and wires. Modern braces are smaller and a less noticeable. Some orthodontics are tooth-colored or clear.
For some people, traditional braces are not necessary at all to straighten teeth. Removable clear aligners can get the job done discreetly, and usually in less time.
- Enamel Shaping – Your dental professional can reshape enamel to change the look of uneven or crowded teeth or teeth that appear to be too long. By contouring the enamel, your dentist can improve your smile.
- Dental Crowns – For broken teeth or other issues that require a drastic restoration, one that enamel shaping and veneers cannot provide, dental crowns are often the appropriate fix. To place a crown, your dentist must first prepare the tooth by removing part of the outer structure. The custom-made crown is crafted to fit over the tooth and blend in with the surrounding natural teeth.
- A Fresh, New Smile – The first step to an improved, new smile is a trip to visit your dentist. During your consultation, you will discuss the best cosmetic dentistry procedures to meet your needs and desires. If you have signs of poor oral health, your dentist may recommend a treatment plan before any cosmetic procedures.
Good dental care starts at a young age, but kids often don’t understand the importance of preventative care or child dentistry. As a parent, there are a few dental care tips that can help you instill good behavior in your children and help them develop strong, healthy teeth. Here are five ways you can make oral care easier for your kids.
1. Teach them good habits.
It’s important that children learn the right way to care for their teeth before they have a chance to learn it the wrong way. Be sure that your children know the correct techniques for brushing and flossing their teeth so that they get the most out of their oral care routine.
2. Make brushing fun.
Make brushing and flossing feel less like a chore for your kids by making it fun! Try giving them little incentives to brush and floss each day, or turn it into a fun game. If your children want to brush and floss, they’ll be much more likely to keep up with it.
3. Give them input.
Your children might enjoy taking care of their teeth more if you let them have some say in the process. Letting them choose their toothpaste flavor or a toothbrush they like helps make brushing their teeth more enjoyable.
4. Set an example.
Your kids look up to you, so it’s important that you demonstrate enthusiasm about your own oral health routine. Show your kids that you like to brush and floss, and they’ll start to see it as something to look forward to!
5. Talk up the dentist.
Many people dread going to the dentist, and it’s a fear that starts at a young age. But your child’s professional dental care experience doesn’t have to be scary. Be sure to use positive language before your child’s regular dental visits to help make the dentist trip much easier for everyone.
While children might not understand right away the importance of good dental care, you can still help them learn ways to care for their teeth that they’ll use the rest of their lives. By starting young, you’re setting your kids up for a lifetime of dental success.
It’s never fun to get a toothache, but sometimes it’s hard to tell exactly where the pain is coming from. Sometimes the cause is something that will clear up on its own, while other times you should see a dentist to receive proper dental care. Here are a few common reasons why your teeth hurt and what you should do about them.
Tooth Pain Causes
Sinus infection: This is a common cause for tooth pain, particularly in your rear molars which are close to your sinuses. During a sinus infection, the pressure in your sinuses can actually turn into pain in your back teeth. Your doctor will be able to prescribe you medication to clear up the infection.
Gum disease: Also known as periodontal disease, a gum infection can cause tooth pain or even tooth loss if left untreated. Gum recession, a symptom of gum disease, can also cause tooth pain as the sensitive root of your tooth becomes exposed. See your dentist about getting your periodontal disease treated and the tooth pain should subside as well.
Tooth trauma: Damage to the tooth, such as a broken or cracked tooth, can cause pain and sensitivity. If your tooth has been damaged in any way, it’s a good idea to see your dentist as soon as possible.
Clenching and grinding teeth: People usually clench or grind their teeth in their sleep, then wake up with a toothache or jaw ache from the constant pressure. Your dentist will be able to tell if your grind your teeth at night by looking at the chewing surfaces. He or she might recommend night guard therapy to prevent you from grinding them when you’re asleep, which should stop the pain.
Tooth decay: If you’re noticing sensitivity in your teeth, particularly when you chew, tooth decay might be to blame. A good cleaning and preventative measures can keep decay from becoming a full-blown cavity, but you might need to get a filling if it’s severe.
When in doubt, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Give our office a call to book an appointment with one of our dentists today. Our staff will be happy to look into the causes of your tooth pain and have you back on your feet in no time!