Posts for: November, 2016
Have you heard bad things about root canals? Well, read on to get to the "root" of these fabrications.
When you hear the words "root canal," do you feel immediate dread? You're not alone. A survey conducted by the American Academy of Endodontists - root canal specialists - found that most of its respondents were fearful of pain associated with root canals; not because of their own experiences, but because of what they'd heard or read from other sources. In actuality, when you have a root canal at 1st Choice Dental Care in Kennesaw, Woodstock or Marietta, GA, you'll find that the procedure is easy and actually relieves pain instead of causing it. Ready to hear the truth from our doctors? Read on!
Myths about root canals...
There are several persistent myths associated with root canals that your dentist hears from patients. There is concern that root canals are painful, drawn-out procedures, that they can cause illness like heart disease or cancer, or that having a tooth pulled is easier and more effective. All of these beliefs are based on out-of-date dental practices or studies that have long since been proven inaccurate, but the stories surrounding root canals continue to live on, preventing people from getting this very important and tooth-saving procedure.
...and the truth about root canals
The idea that having a root canal can contribute to other illnesses was based on a study done almost 100 years ago and the results of which have never been proven or replicated. The most widespread myth - root canals are painful - is simply incorrect, thanks to high-tech treatment methods and effective anesthetic procedures. Many times people who visit their dentist are in pain before a root canal, which is due to an infection deep inside the tooth. Removing the infection and sealing the tooth off stops the pain from continuing or increasing. By doing this, your dentist is also keeping your natural tooth in place, which we now know is an important factor in preserving the health of the rest of your teeth.
When you need a root canal or any other dental procedure, you can be assured that the entire staff of 1st Choice Dental Care in Kennesaw, Woodstock and Marietta, Georgia has your health and safety at the top of their priority list. Contact us with any further questions or to make an appointment!
In her decades-long career, renowned actress Kathy Bates has won Golden Globes, Emmys, and many other honors. Bates began acting in her twenties, but didn't achieve national recognition until she won the best actress Oscar for Misery — when she was 42 years old! “I was told early on that because of my physique and my look, I'd probably blossom more in my middle age,” she recently told Dear Doctor magazine. “[That] has certainly been true.” So if there's one lesson we can take from her success, it might be that persistence pays off.
When it comes to her smile, Kathy also recognizes the value of persistence. Now 67, the veteran actress had orthodontic treatment in her 50's to straighten her teeth. Yet she is still conscientious about wearing her retainer. “I wear a retainer every night,” she said. “I got lazy about it once, and then it was very difficult to put the retainer back in. So I was aware that the teeth really do move.”
Indeed they do. In fact, the ability to move teeth is what makes orthodontic treatment work. By applying consistent and gentle forces, the teeth can be shifted into better positions in the smile. That's called the active stage of orthodontic treatment. Once that stage is over, another begins: the retention stage. The purpose of retention is to keep that straightened smile looking as good as it did when the braces came off. And that's where the retainer comes in.
There are several different kinds of retainers, but all have the same purpose: To hold the teeth in their new positions and keep them from shifting back to where they were. We sometimes say teeth have a “memory” — not literally, but in the sense that if left alone, teeth tend to migrate back to their former locations. And if you've worn orthodontic appliances, like braces or aligners, that means right back where you started before treatment.
By holding the teeth in place, retainers help stabilize them in their new positions. They allow new bone and ligaments to re-form and mature around them, and give the gums time to remodel themselves. This process can take months to years to be complete. But you may not need to wear a retainer all the time: Often, removable retainers are worn 24 hours a day at first; later they are worn only at night. We will let you know what's best in your individual situation.
So take a tip from Kathy Bates, star of the hit TV series American Horror Story, and wear your retainer as instructed. That's the best way to keep your straight new smile from changing back to the way it was — and to keep a bad dream from coming true.
If you would like more information about orthodontic retainers, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can learn more about this topic in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Why Orthodontic Retainers?” and “The Importance of Orthodontic Retainers.” The interview with Kathy Bates appears in the latest issue of Dear Doctor.
Think you're too old to have your teeth straightened? While we automatically pair “teenager” with “braces,” at least one in five orthodontic patients are adults. And there's many more that could benefit, as many as three-quarters of adults with a correctable bite problem.
But although orthodontics can be performed at any age, it's not a minor undertaking. It will require time, patience and expense. So, before you decide to undergo orthodontics, here are 3 simple questions to ask first.
Why? Like children and teenagers, adults can benefit cosmetically from correcting a poor bite. But there's another great reason besides a more attractive smile: misaligned teeth are more difficult to care for than normal teeth. Orthodontic treatment is an investment and potential cost-saver in your future dental health.
Why not? Even senior adults can successfully undergo treatment. But braces might be ill-advised if you have either poor oral or general health. Periodontal (gum) disease, for example, can cause bone loss, which makes it difficult to safely and successfully move teeth (and the effort could worsen current disease activity in the gums). Medical conditions like bleeding disorders, leukemia or uncontrollable diabetes could interfere as well. You'll need both a dental and medical examination beforehand.
How? We can use braces — or we might be able to use a newer, more popular option with adults called clear aligners. These are a series of computer-designed clear, plastic trays you wear in sequence until you finish the series. Each tray is slightly smaller than the previous tray, moving the teeth in much the same manner as braces. But unlike braces, you can remove aligners for cleaning or a rare special occasion — and they're much less noticeable than metal braces. Although in some cases braces may still be the best option, it's also possible clear aligners could be the option you've been looking for.
So, are you ready for a new smile and a more maintainable mouth? Visit us for the answers to your questions and see if braces (or clear aligners) can transform your life and health.
If you would like more information on orthodontic treatment for adults, 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 “Orthodontics for the Older Adult.”