Posts for tag: tooth decay
Dental caries (tooth decay) is a leading cause of tooth loss. But with prompt diagnosis and care we can often stop it before it causes too much damage.
The traditional treatment approach is simple: remove all diseased tooth structure and then restore the tooth with a filling. But this otherwise effective treatment has one drawback: you may lose significant healthy structure to accommodate a suitable filling or to make vulnerable areas easier to clean from bacterial plaque.
That's why a new treatment approach called minimally invasive dentistry (MID) is becoming more common. The goal of MID is to remove as little of a tooth's natural enamel and dentin as possible. This leaves the treated tooth stronger and healthier, and could reduce long-term dental costs too.
Here's how MID could change your future dental care.
Better risk assessment. MID includes a treatment protocol called caries management by risk assessment (CAMBRA). With CAMBRA, we evaluate your individual tooth decay risk, including oral bacteria levels, the quality of saliva flow to neutralize mouth acid, and sugar consumption. We then use our findings to customize a treatment plan that targets your areas of highest risk.
New detection methods. The real key to fighting tooth decay is to find it before it can destroy tooth structure with the help of new diagnostic technology. Besides advances in x-ray imaging that provide better views with less radiation exposure, we're also using powerful dental microscopes, lasers and infrared photography to show us more about your teeth than we can see with the naked eye.
"Less is More" treatments. In contrast to the dental drill, many dentists are now using air abrasion rather than a dental drill to remove decayed tooth material. Air abrasion emits tiny material particles within a pressurized air stream that leaves more healthy tooth structure intact than with drilling. We're also using new filling materials like composite resin that not only resemble natural tooth color, but require less structural removal than other types of fillings.
Using MID, we can treat tooth decay while preserving more of your natural teeth. This promises better long-term outcomes for future dental health.
If you would like more information on new treatments for tooth decay, 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 “Minimally Invasive Dentistry: When Less Care is More.”
Find out the root cause of your toothache and what to do about it.
It seems like the whole world stops when you are dealing with a toothache. It’s amazing how much the throbbing and aching can be enough to stop you from enjoying your lunch let alone get anything done at work. What could be causing this incessant pain? Our Woodstock, Kennesaw and Marietta, GA, dentists are here to tell you what your toothache is trying to tell you.
Do you experience sensitivity to hot or cold foods?
If you notice brief pains in one or more teeth when eating ice cream or indulging in a steaming-hot cup of coffee, it could be a cavity or it could simply be that you have tooth sensitivity. This usually happens when enough enamel has been worn away from the tooth (this is common in those who grind their teeth). If you are noticing this issue it’s a good time to turn to our Woodstock, Kennesaw and Marietta general dentists to make sure that you don’t have a cavity and to find out ways to address your sensitivity.
When does a toothache signify something more serious?
Sometimes the pain you are experiencing isn’t due to decay at all. Of course, it could mean a myriad of things, from gum disease to an infection inside the tooth. If you notice that you experience pain when chewing or biting down, this could have a cracked or fractured tooth.
Depending on the severity of the fracture, we will need to shave away the crack or fracture and then place either a crown or filling over the tooth to restore it. If the pain is due to an infection, in many cases root canal treatment will be required to remove the inflamed or infected dental pulp and to preserve as much of the natural tooth structure as possible.
If in doubt, call your dentist right away at the first signs of dental pain. 1st Choice Dental Care in Woodstock, Kennesaw and Marietta, GA, is ready to provide you with the immediate dental care you need. Call us today and let us know if you are dealing with dental pain. We’ll try and get you in as soon as possible.
“That candy will rot your teeth!” is something we have all heard from Grandma at one point or another. Even so, sugary treats like candy or soda are a guilty pleasure for many people. Do you know the real damage these foods do to your teeth? With help from your Kennesaw, Marietta and Woodstock, GA dentist, you can get the real facts on how sugary treats hurt your smile and what you can do to have the most healthy and happy smile possible.
What do sugary foods do to my smile?
When bacteria and acids found in sugary foods build up on the teeth, they form plaque, a sticky substance which clings to the teeth. Over time, plaque hardens into tartar, causing gum disease and tooth decay. Sugary foods increase the instances of these substances in your mouth and on your teeth. Bacteria and plaque are brushed away by brushing and flossing, though removing hard tartar usually requires help from your Kennesaw, Marietta and Woodstock dentist. Twice yearly dental examinations and cleanings help keep these forms of tooth decay at bay and treat them when necessary.
How can I enjoy sugary foods without hurting my teeth?
Avoid sticky treats and eating sugary foods throughout the whole day rather than all at once. As the saying goes, “everything in moderation”. Limiting the number of times and the amount of sugary foods and drinks you consume helps tremendously in preventing cavities and tooth decay. If drinking a soda, try using a straw to limit the soda’s contact with your teeth. Start choosing sugar-free gums over sugary brands. If chocolate is your game, try switching to dark chocolate. As always, be sure to brush away bacteria and acids after you consume a sugary treat or beverage.
For more information on what sugary treats do to your smile, or to schedule a regular dental examination and cleaning, please contact your dentist at 1st Choice Dental Care in Kennesaw, Marietta and Woodstock, GA. Call (678) 293-8773 to schedule your appointment today!