Archive for March, 2016

What is a Dental Emergency?

Monday, March 28th, 2016

Sometimes an injury or tooth pain can occur suddenly, and immediate dental care may be required. It’s not always obvious when a problem needs emergency care, but some dental emergencies do need to be treated quickly to avoid infections or permanent damage.

Here’s a guide to situations that are usually considered dental emergencies.

  • Cracked or broken tooth – contact your dentist immediately. Rinse your mouth with water and hold a cold compress to the affected area until you can get to your dentist’s office.
  • Excessive bleeding with lip or tongue bite – clean the area and use a cold compress. Go to the emergency room if the bleeding is severe or won’t stop.
  • Jaw injury – if you think you may have broken your jaw, apply a cold pack and immediately to your dentist’s office or the emergency room.
  • Knocked out tooth –rinse the root of the lost tooth if it’s dirty. Do not scrub or removed any tissue left on the tooth. Try reinserting the tooth into its socket, but if that isn’t successful, see your dentist right away. Placing the lost tooth in milk may help preserve the tooth until you can get professional help.
  • Loose tooth – see your dentist immediately if one of your teeth is loosened. Take over-the-counter pain reliever if needed, and apply a cold compress.
  • Lost crown or filling – place the crown or filling in a safe place and contact your dentist. To decrease sensitivity, you may apply clove oil and dental cement available at your drugstore, but only if you’ve gotten approval from your dentist.
  • Severe or sudden toothache – rinse your mouth with warm water and gently floss around the tooth. Contact your dentist if your toothache persists.
  • Swelling – painful swelling in your mouth may indicate an abscess, which is an infected area of pus that can become serious. See your dentist as soon as possible, and try rinsing your mouth with saltwater in the meantime.

Emergency Dentistry Richmond VA

Pregnancy and Your Dental Health

Monday, March 21st, 2016

Having a baby is usually a time for celebration in a woman’s life. With pregnancy, your body changes in obvious ways and in some not so noticeable areas, including inside your mouth. According to the American Dental Association, not taking proper care of your teeth and gums can impact your pregnancy and your overall health, as well as contribute to future oral health concerns.

When a woman is pregnant, hormone production increases and blood flow rises dramatically, between 30 and 50 percent. Because of the extra estrogen and progesterone, as well as the increased blood flow, about half of pregnant women develop pregnancy gingivitis, which can create swollen, bleeding, or sensitive gums. In fact, severe gum disease has been linked to premature birth, so it’s important to take the condition seriously. Practicing good oral habits, like brushing twice a day and flossing regularly, will help with the symptoms. During your second trimester, schedule a visit to the dentist for a checkup and cleaning; your dentist may recommend more frequent cleanings during pregnancy to keep your mouth healthy.

If you have a problem arise during your pregnancy, contact your dentist right away. Most dentists will only perform fillings, root canals, or extractions during the second trimester and only if the procedure can’t be postponed until after the birth. If work must be done, your dentist will take every precaution to minimize risks to you and your baby. To be safe, a local injection of novocaine or lidocaine is the best choice for anesthesia. Usually, X-rays are avoided completely during pregnancy,

Dental Care During Pregnancy Richmond VA

Biomimetic Dentistry: The Future is Now

Thursday, March 17th, 2016

Designed to imitate nature and preserve your teeth, biomimetic dentistry focuses on restoring weak, damaged, and decayed teeth to keep them strong and prevent bacterial invasion. With biomimetic dentistry, dentists study the properties of nature to duplicate them in their patients’ mouth. The goal is to rebuild teeth with materials that look, feel, and hold up more like natural teeth do.

In the past, dentists had to remove healthy tooth structure to place amalgam fillings and traditional dental crowns. Biomimetic dentistry encourages dentist to bond materials with the tooth to preserve its structure and integrity. These methods limit the amount of healthy tooth structure that is removed and offer more durable results. Reduction in cutting down teeth for inlays, onlays, root canals, and dental crowns is also promoted as a biomimetic dentistry idea.

Modern materials like solid ceramics and dental porcelain complement biomimetic dentistry. Whereas traditional metal fillings can leak or change shape over time, today’s restorations are designed to keep healthy tooth structure in tact. As well, sealing off the tooth against infection will protect the area from the threat of infection.

The concept of biomimetic dentistry has been in existence for the last 25 years. Researchers have worked at renowned universities in Sweden, Switzerland, The Netherlands, Japan, Italy, Turkey, the U.S., and many other countries to hone these ideas and share them within the dental community. Proponents of biomimetic dentistry in the United States have included Ray Bertolotti, John Kois, and John Kanca III.

Family Dentistry in Richmond Virginia

The 411 on Toothpaste Varieties

Thursday, March 17th, 2016

Television commercials and print ads inundate consumers with toothpaste options that promise to provide whiter, healthier smiles. All these choices can cause you to wander aimlessly down the toothpaste aisle feeling overwhelmed. Understanding what these products really offer can help you find the right toothpaste for your family.

Follow these helpful hints as you make your selection:

Fluoride matters
No matter what you want, from tartar-control to breath-freshening toothpastes, choose a product with fluoride. Brushing twice daily with fluoride toothpaste can reduce tooth decay by up to 40 percent.

Watch for the American Dental Association (ADA) seal
Only toothpastes that have the scientific data to back up their claims and that meet the ADA’s criteria for safety and effectiveness receive this seal. Stay away from any product that doesn’t have the ADA stamp on it.

Whitening pastes actually work
Although the results are temporary, whitening toothpastes will brighten your smile. These products contain mild abrasives that erase surface stains on your teeth and more effectively remove those stains, so you should notice a difference in how white your teeth look.

Technique matters more than the toothpaste
Even with the best toothpaste on the market, you won’t see exceptional results if you don’t brush correctly. Place the brush at a 45-degree angle to get some of the bristles in between the tooth and the gums; then, make small, circular motions until you cover your entire mouth.

The ingredients might surprise you
Many people don’t realize that toothpastes actually contain things like seaweed and detergent. For instance, seaweed colloids, mineral colloids, and natural gums are used as common thickening agents. Also found in many shampoos and body washes, sodium lauryl sulfate creates the foaming action we experience and is deemed 100 percent safe by the ADA.

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