Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Gum Recession Treatment Options

Gum Recession
We treat patients suffering from both gum recession and gum disease.  Healthy gums are extremely important for maintaining good oral health.  When gums start to recede the space between the gum line and the teeth retracts and can create pockets for bacteria to gather.  As more of your tooth and roots become exposed the entire area may become painful, and bacteria build up can lead to tooth decay, root infection, and gum disease.  If left untreated, patients can end up in pain and even losing their teeth.

We specialize in helping patients to prevent oral health issues and correct them once started.  There are several ways you can keep your gums healthy including brushing twice a day with a soft toothbrush, flossing daily, and rinsing with an antiseptic mouthwash.  Additionally, you should visit the dentist twice a year for a thorough teeth cleaning.  Smokers are at greater risk for gum disease and cavities so if you are currently smoking – stop.

During your dental examination, we will determine if your gums are starting to recede or if you are at risk for this condition.  It is important to treat gum recession immediately so that your gums can be restored to good health.  Here are some of the treatment options we suggest:

·         Tooth Scaling and Root Planing.  This is a deep cleaning technique where plaque and tartar are removed from the gum line and below the gum line by the roots.  The entire area is cleaned thoroughly to remove the cause of your gum recession.  After cleaning, the roots are smoothed down again.  This should correct most minor gum recession problems.
·         Antibiotics.  Once cleaned, antibiotics may be used to eliminate any lingering bacteria.
·         Pocket Depth Reduction.  If your gums have receded to the point that there are pockets or gaps in the gum line, you may need surgery to correct it.  With pocket depth reduction, your gums are folded down; the bacteria and plaque are removed, then they are placed snugly over your tooth to eliminate most or all of the gap.  This will prevent bacteria from gathering in that area again.
·         Soft Tissue Graft.  If you don’t have enough gum tissue left, you may need a soft tissue graft.  Skin from the roof of your mouth is taken and attached to your gums in the area where roots are exposed. Once healed this new gum tissue should protect your teeth and gums.

Fortunately, there are multiple options for treating gum recession.  They key is to identify the problem early on so that it can be corrected before you need any type of surgery.  This can be difficult to do without visiting the dentist because gum recession typically won’t start hurting until too much of the tooth or the roots are exposed.  It will, however, make your teeth appear longer, and you may experience some tooth sensitivity when brushing or eating.  If you notice these signs schedule an appointment with your dentist right away.  By keeping your teeth and gum line clean and free from bacteria, you decrease your risk of developing full blown gum recession and other oral health issues.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

An Implant Dentist and Emergency Dental Work

Implant Dentist
You may need an Implant Dentist if you have a dental emergency.  It is common for people to have their teeth knocked out during an automobile accident, while playing sports, are simply rough housing.  When this happens it may hurt and more importantly, leave you with a gaping hole in your mouth. 

In the past, the only option after tooth loss was to wear partial dentures or live with the gap.  This can look awkward and feel uncomfortable.  Not replacing your missing tooth can cause problems with speech, eating, and your appearance.  Fortunately, dental technology has changed, and we can now offer a permanent solution to correct missing teeth.

As an Implant Dentist, we can replace missing teeth permanently.  An implanted tooth will look completely natural and won’t require any additional maintenance steps.  You simply brush and floss like normal to keep your natural and synthetic teeth in good health.  If you play sports, we do recommend wearing a mouth guard so you can prevent tooth loss in the future.

The Implant Process
Call our office to schedule a teeth cleaning, examination, and consultation.  It is important to clean your teeth in order to remove any bacteria or plaque that has built up around the gum line.  Your gums need to be in good health in order to perform this procedure so we will recommend any additional work that needs to be done in preparation for implants.  If your gums appear healthy enough for the procedure, we will schedule a time to begin and take a mold of your teeth.

The first step is to implant a metal piece underneath your gum line.  This piece will be secured to your jaw bone and, over time, they will fuse together.  This creates an extremely strong and durable synthetic root system.  Since the root itself is synthetic, it also ensures that your new tooth is perfectly straight.

While you are healing from the first phase of the procedure, your new teeth will be created in the dental lab.  Your new teeth will be perfectly sized to match your existing ones and the shape of your mouth.  The color will also be matched to your existing teeth in order to keep in natural looking.

Once your gums have healed from the initial procedure, we will attach a second metal piece to the first one. This will be at the surface of your gum line and your new tooth will be secured to it.  We will position your new tooth perfectly and once completed; no one will be able to tell that it is not natural.

As an Implant Dentist, we recommend this procedure for anyone that has lost a tooth in an emergency accident or has suffered from tooth loss due to old age.  Dentures are a viable option, but they require additional care, and it is difficult, if not impossible, to not feel them in your mouth.  With implants, once they are set you won’t even notice that you had dental work done.  Call our office and schedule an appointment to learn more.