Frequently Asked Questions
Periodontal disease is a serious, chronic bacterial infection that attacks the gums and bones that support your teeth. Left untreated it leads to tooth loss and may contribute to heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and pre-term or low birth weight infants.
By scheduling regular checkups, early stage gum disease can treated before it leads to a much more serious condition. If your condition is more advanced, treatment in the dental office will be required.
Tooth decay is the process that results in a cavity (dental caries). It occurs when bacteria in your mouth make acids that eat away at a tooth. If not treated, tooth decay can cause pain, infection, and tooth loss.
You can easily prevent tooth decay by brushing and flossing your teeth regularly, seeing your dentist for teeth cleaning and checkups, and avoiding foods that are high in sugar.
The combination of bacteria and food causes tooth decay. A clear, sticky substance called plaque that contains bacteria is always forming on your teeth and gums. As the bacteria feed on the sugars in the food you eat, they make acids. The acids attack for 20 minutes or more after eating. Over a period of time, these acids destroy tooth enamel, resulting in tooth decay.
Tooth decay usually does not cause symptoms until you have a cavity or an infected tooth. When this occurs, a toothache is the most common symptom.
Tooth decay (caries) are treated by removing the decay, preparing the tooth to receive a filling in the area where the cavity was. If the decay is too deep, the tooth may require a root canal and a crown or tooth extraction.
This procedure involves the removal of the nerve inside a tooth. When a root dies it needs to be removed from the inside the tooth to treat infection and as preventative maintenance. Most times, a crown is needed after a root canal procedure has been performed.
This is a type of restoration that caps or completely covers a tooth or dental implant. Most times crowns are needed when there is a large cavity or after a tooth has had a root canal.
This is a thin layer of porcelain or ceramic material placed over a tooth surface with removing little to no tooth structure. Often times veneers are placed for aesthetic reasons.
Handling a denture requires care. It’s a good idea to stand over a folded towel or a sink of water just in case you accidentally drop the denture. Brush the denture each day, to remove food deposits and plaque.
Brushing your denture helps prevent the appliance from becoming permanently stained. It’s best to use a brush that is designed for cleaning dentures. A denture brush has bristles that are arranged to fit the shape of the denture. A regular, soft-bristled toothbrush is also acceptable. Avoid using a brush using with hard bristles, which can damage the denture.
Clean your dentures by thoroughly rinsing off loose food particles. Moisten the brush and apply the denture cleaner. Brush all denture surfaces gently to avoid damaging the plastic. A dentist/denturist can recommend the proper method for keeping your dentures in good shape.
Over time, adjusting the denture may be necessary. As you age, your mouth changes, which can affect the fit of the denture. Your bone and gum ridges can recede or shrink, resulting in a loose-fitting denture.
You can do serious harm to your denture and to your health by trying to adjust or repair your denture.
A denture that is not made to fit precisely by a dentist/denturist can cause irritation and sores. Using a do-it-yourself kit can damage the appliance beyond repair, Glues sold over-the-counter often contain harmful chemicals and should not be used on a denture.
If your denture no longer fits properly, if it breaks, cracks or chips, or if one of the teeth becomes loose, see your dentist/denturist immediately. In many cases, dentists/denturists can make necessary adjustments or repairs, often on the same day.
Your dentist/denturist will advise you on frequency of dental visits. Regular dental check-ups and having your teeth and dentures professional cleaned are vital for maintaining a healthy smile.
Root Canal Therapy – is needed when the root’s nerve has become infected and needs to be removed and replaced with a material to prevent further infection.