Posts for: April, 2017
Wearing braces is all about the future: you undergo many months of treatment to gain a lifetime of better mouth function and a more attractive smile.
In the meantime, though, you'll have to deal with a few new realities during treatment: restrictions on foods, limitations with mouth function, and (perhaps) embarrassment over your new “metallic” smile.
There's one reality, though, that trumps all others in importance: your risk for developing dental disease increases significantly during orthodontic treatment. The brackets and wires of your braces make it more difficult to remove bacterial plaque, the main cause of dental disease, which allows places for disease-causing bacteria to thrive. To combat this, you'll need to step up your hygiene efforts to remove daily plaque.
One sign your efforts might not be getting the job done is red, swollen or bleeding gums. Although gums can swell in reaction to the braces themselves, it's often because plaque-induced periodontal (gum) disease has infected the gum tissues.
Gum disease is an aggressive infection. If it isn't stopped it can damage the gums and underlying bone that support your teeth — damage that could eventually lead to tooth loss. To stop it, we must remove plaque from all tooth and gum surfaces, even below the gum line. In some advanced cases it may even be necessary to remove the braces to better treat the disease.
That's why preventing gum disease through effective hygiene is so important. Besides continuing routine visits with your family dentist, you should also brush and floss every day to remove plaque. Be sure you're brushing above and below the braces. It may be helpful to use an interproximal brush specifically designed to maneuver around these tight spaces. You can also use a floss threader or a water irrigator to make the job of flossing easier.
If you do notice gum redness, swelling or bleeding, don't delay — call your dentist at once. An examination will determine if you have gum disease and to what degree, which will guide treatment. The sooner this happens, the less the impact on your dental health and your orthodontic treatment.
If you would like more information on dental care while wearing braces, 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 “Gum Swelling During Orthodontics.”
Are you curious to know how dental implants work to replace teeth?
It’s truly amazing how much dental technology has advanced over the centuries. Thanks to these wonderful advancements, our Bethesda, MD, family dentist, Dr. John Kelly, is able to offer an artificial tooth that both looks and works just like a real tooth. No other restoration offers the same benefits that a dental implant. Of course, you may be wondering just how this metal post could possibly replace a tooth.
While nothing is ever as reliable as natural teeth, our Bethesda dentist knows that you are looking for the next best thing. Dental implants are the closest you’ll get to a natural tooth and function in much the same way, offering a long-term restoration that could potentially last the rest of your life.
The implant itself is a small metal post, but this part won’t be visible when you smile. In fact, the metal post is what is placed into the jawbone and functions like tooth roots. The visible part of the implant will be the crown, bridges or dentures that the implant will support.
The Different Restoration Options
Once the implant has been placed and has successfully fused together with the jawbone then it’s time for the dental artistry to come in. Making a restoration that looks as close to a real tooth as possible is the name of the game for the dental experts at Bethesda Row Dental. Whether you need to replace a single missing tooth or all of your teeth with dental implants, we can create the restoration you need to get a full smile back.
A dental crown will be custom-made based on impressions taken of your mouth. Most crowns nowadays are made from durable tooth-colored materials that can be matched to the rest of your smile. Of course, those who aren’t happy with their dentures can also choose to get dental implants. Dentures can then be attached to the implants to prevent dentures from shifting or moving around without having to fuss with denture adhesives.
If you are dealing with tooth loss and want to discuss your treatment options Bethesda Row Dental is here to help. Turn to the restorative dental experts in Bethesda, MD, to get the smile you know you deserve.