Dental Tips

10 Tips for Dental Care Basics

10 Tips for Dental Care Basics

Dental Care is the practice of keeping one’s mouth clean and free of diseases such as cavities (dental caries, tooth decay) and gum diseases like gingivitis and periodontitis.

Proper care of your teeth and gums minimises the risk of diseases and can keep them healthy throughout your life. Below are some steps to follow to achieve this goal.

Tooth Brushing

Consistent tooth brushing is the principal method of avoiding many oral diseases and can be practised by an individual to reduce the buildup of plaque. Many oral health care professionals agree that tooth brushing, using manual, electric, or interdental brushes, should be done for a minimum of two minutes, and be practised at least twice a day. You can also use a tongue cleaner or a soft-bristle toothbrush to clean the tongue.

Flossing

About 40% of tooth surfaces are interdental and are only accessible by using dental floss. Flossing removes food particles and plaque from between the teeth and below the gums.

There are different types of floss available (waxed, Unwaxed, floss threaders), that can make flossing easier especially when cleaning between orthodontic appliances and dental implants or as a preference over regular floss.

Increase Your Intake Of  Calcium  and Fiber

Vitamin C is essential for healthy gums, to prevent scurvy. Eating a balanced diet and limiting snacks can help prevent tooth decay, periodontal disease, and promote healthy teeth and gums.

Raw vegetables, plain yoghurt, milk, cheese, or fruits are seen as dentally beneficial because they are rich in calcium and phosphate and may also encourage remineralisation. High- fibre foods aids in increasing the flow of saliva to dilute carbohydrates like sugar and neutralise the acid.

Limiting Sugar Consumption

There exists a common link between processed sugars and dental cavities. The higher the consumption of sugar, the longer the time during which the tooth becomes exposed to low PH levels. Demineralization occurs at this point. It is imperative to minimise the ingestion of sugary food and drinks, for the teeth to remineralise and repair through fluoride.

Avoid Chewing Hard Foods And Substances

In as much as chewing gum promotes oral irrigation between the teeth, teeth in poor condition become damaged or loose fillings may fallout. Chewing on solid objects such as ice and edible rocks can have terrible consequences for your teeth. The tooth may chip, and this can lead to more tooth fractures later on. Also, do not be tempted to use toothpicks or any other objects that could hurt your gums and allow in bacteria.

Avoid Teeth Staining 

Ingesting dark coloured beverages such as red wine or coffee may stain the teeth leading to a discoloured smile. Consuming high-concentration of alcohol can lead to a dry mouth, with little saliva to keep the teeth from plaque and bacteria. You should also avoid using any form of tobacco products, which can cause teeth yellowing, periodontal disease, and oral cancer.

Fluoride Use

Fluoride is a principal protector against dental caries. The teeth surface becomes resistant to acids during the process of remineralisation. Drinking fluoridated water is recommended by some dental experts in addition to using fluoride toothpaste. During your appointment at Vita Dental Spring, the dentist can recommend using mouthwash that contains fluoride or one with ingredients that fight plaque. Always look for toothpaste that has been approved by the American Dental Association (ADA).

Dental Visits

Schedule regular trips to the dentist to be examined and have your teeth cleaned. Dental check-ups should be at least twice a year. Meanwhile, contact your dentist at Vita Dental Spring if you notice any symptoms that could suggest oral health problems, such as:

Inflamed or bleeding gums

Loose permanent teeth

Poor teeth alignment 

Sensitivity to hot and cold food or drinks

Bad breath or an unusual taste in your mouth

Use Mouth Rinses

Swishing with mouth rinse is more effective in controlling plaque levels and ensuring fresh breath.

Some examples of mouth rinses include:

Saline, which is recommended after procedures like dental extractions to prevent dry socket.

Commercial mouthwash (available in supermarkets and local drugstores) that contains eucalyptol and menthol.

Chlorhexidine gluconate, an antiseptic mouth rinse that’s used only for a short while due to brown staining on the teeth and tongue.

Orthodontic Appliances

Dentures, retainers, metal and Invisalign braces must be kept extremely clean. These appliances should be cleaned twice a day with a soft-bristled brush and mild toothpaste. You could also use a colourless unscented dishwashing liquid, or any dentist recommended commercial cleaning agents. 

Apart from metal braces, dentures and Invisalign braces should be taken out at night, stored in a dry place, to reduce the risk of multiplying bacteria. Leaving them in when sleeping, reduces the protective cleansing and antibacterial properties of saliva.

Understanding the dental care basics and practising them diligently, will ensure overall oral health. Visit us at Vita Dental Spring today and learn more about oral hygiene.

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10 Tips for Healthier Teeth and Gums

10 Tips for Healthier Teeth and Gums

Proper dental care habits result in bright smiles and healthy teeth and gums. They can help prevent cavities, gum disease, the buildup of plaque, and eliminate bad breath.

The good news is that most of these problems are avoidable. Practising the correct dental hygiene can inhibit severe medical complications and keep your teeth healthy for life. Vita Dental Spring shows you some of the best practices to help keep your teeth and gums healthy.

Brushing Your Teeth

It is essential to brush your teeth after every meal. However, it’s preferable to wait for at least 30 minutes after eating, to allow any enamel that softened during eating to re-harden.

Use a soft toothbrush to brush against the teeth at a 45-degree angle in small circular motions. It should go on for about two minutes. Do not forget to clean your tongue from the back forward. Afterwards, you can rinse your mouth with water.

Develop Good Eating Habits

Consume sugary foods and drinks less often. Avoid sweets, candies, chocolates, processed fruit juices or carbonated beverages. Should you decide otherwise, rinse your mouth with water or brush your teeth afterwards if you have a chance.

Load up on fruits and leafy greens. It’s known that fruits and salad greens are an all-around healthy punch. Vegetables rich in fibre such as raw spinach, celery, and fruits like apples, keep the mouth clean because they’re fibre-filled. The saliva produced by chewing neutralises mouth bacteria.

Raw onion. Onions are a useful bacteria-fighting food because they have an antimicrobial compound that destroys bacteria. In fact, according to one study, onions eliminate bacteria strains that lead to cavities and gingivitis. Use them on your sandwich, salads, soups, and stews.

Have plenty of calcium-rich foods. Milk, yoghurt, and cheese are not only filled with bone-fortifying calcium, but also with the protein casein. This protein reduces the levels of acid in the mouth. Calcium is essential for the development of both children and older adult’s teeth; as it maintains the bone where the tooth roots are fixed in. 

Regular Dental visits

Schedule dental appointments every six months or as recommended by a dental expert. During the checkup at Vita Dental Spring, your teeth will be professionally cleaned to remove any tartar or plaque buildup, and you may even get your teeth polished. These consistent visits are essential in keeping your teeth and gums healthy

Flossing

Flossing helps to remove plaque and food particles that are stuck between your teeth and under your gums. To ensure you floss correctly, cut about 18 inches of floss and hold it tightly between your forefingers and thumbs

Place it between teeth and gently slide it up and down until you reach the gum line. Curl it around one tooth and gently rub the side of the tooth, while moving the floss using up-and-down motions. Repeat this process on the rest of your teeth including the back side of your back teeth.

Avoid Tobacco

The best thing you can do for your teeth and overall health is to avoid taking, chewing or smoking tobacco. It causes bad breath, stain your teeth, and can lead to oral cancer and periodontal problems.

Drink More Water

Water helps in preventing cavities by rinsing away sugars and acids that could remain on your teeth. Be sure to rinse off your child’s teeth after giving them medicine. Medicines such as cough syrups contain sugar that brings bacteria in the mouth; converts to acids, which eventually eat away at the enamel.

Keep Your Oral Care Equipment Clean

Vita Dental Spring recommends changing your toothbrush every three months or after an illness. Rinse off your toothbrush and empty the oral irrigator properly after use. Store your toothbrush in an upright position on the tooth holder. Covering the brush head provides a breeding ground for bacteria and mould.

Use Therapeutic Mouthwash

According to the American Dental Association, aside from masking bad breathe, mouthwash can help reduce cavities, plaque, and gingivitis. Mouth rinses that contain fluoride are especially helpful in preventing cavities and strengthening teeth enamel thus making them resistant to acid attacks.

Don’t Ignore Aches And Pains

Whenever you experience a toothache, jaw pain or gum sensitivity, schedule your appointment immediately. Your dentist can determine the primary cause and help prevent the problem from escalating into high dental repair work.

Always Protect Yourself

Check with your dentist on the availability of dental sealants. A sealant is used to coat the chewing surfaces of the teeth thereby protecting them from tooth decay. Use mouth guards during sports and night guards in cases of teeth grinding.

Good oral hygiene involves everything you do to keep your teeth and gums healthy. Integrating these tips into your daily activities will improve your oral health and guarantee you a whiter and brighter smile. Visit Vita Dental Spring to learn more about dental care tips for both children and adults.

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10 Tips for Getting Soft Tissue Grafts

10 Tips for Getting Soft Tissue Grafts

Your dentist may have suggested that you get a gum graft procedure done. A soft tissue graft surgery is performed to shield your teeth from the effects of gum recession and to improve the appearance of your smile.

According to Vita Dental Spring, most people may not notice that their gums have receded, because it is a slow process. A gum tissue graft is done to restore the damage done. Read on to know more.

Tissue Grafts

During the tissue graft procedure, the dentist obtains a piece of skin from the roof of your mouth and the subepithelial connective tissue and then stitches back down to the gum tissue surrounding the exposed root.

Free Gingival Grafts

Just like the connective-tissue graft, free gingival grafts use of tissue from the roof of the mouth.

Instead of removing tissue under the top layer of flesh, a smaller amount of tissue is removed from the roof of the mouth and then attached to the recipient gum area.

Free gingival grafts are preferable for people who have thin gums or need additional tissues to enlarge the gums.

Pedicle Grafts

Pedicle grafts entail obtaining tissues from gums around or adjacent to the teeth needing repair. The pedicle is partially removed so that one edge remains attached. Next, the gum is then moved down to cover the exposed root and stitched into place. Oral surgeons perform this treatment in patients who have a lot of gum tissue near the tooth.

Where To Obtain The Graft Material

Most oral surgeons and patients would prefer using graft material from a tissue bank instead of getting it from the roof of the mouth.

Often, tissues that stimulate proteins are used to promote your body’s natural ability to grow bone and tissue. Dentists at Vita Dental Spring can recommend the method that will work best for you.

Recovery From Gum Tissue Graft

Following the procedure, you should be able to go home soon. Your dentist may give you sedatives to help you relax, which means you will need to arrange to have someone drive you home.

The dentist provides instructions on postoperative care, such as medication, diet, and physical activity.

Be careful not to brush or floss the wounded area until the affected area has healed. Rinse your mouth with a special mouth rinse and take antibiotics to reduce the risk of infection.

Eat soft foods such as eggs, yoghurt, cheese, and well-cooked vegetables

How To Know If The Graft Has Healed

It takes about eight weeks for tissue to mature and to determine how much mass has “taken.” If the graft tissue was thick, the top layer would peel off, but the more profound parts will remain. Whatever is left should be reddish, and may change to white or pink based on the thickness of the tissue.

Your dentist at Vita Dental Spring would need to re-assess the area and identify how much of it has taken. Often, it may be necessary to do flap surgery to bring what has “taken” more towards the root surface.

When to Call the Doctor

Call a doctor if you experience any unusual symptoms following surgery, including:

Continuous bleeding that won’t stop even after applying pressure for 20 minutes

Excessive pain, swelling, and bruising than expected

How Much Will a Gum Tissue Graft Cost?

Most dental insurers will pay a certain percentage of the cost of gum grafts. However, if you don’t have insurance, the price will depend on the work being done. Discuss with your dentist to know more about the payment options available.

Will I Need Another Gum Tissue Graft?

In as much as gum tissue grafts are effective at repairing gum recession, there is no guarantee that there would be no gum problem in the future. Nevertheless, regular oral checkups and routine dental care at home may help in preventing severe damages.

What Complications Should I Watch For After Surgery?

Sometimes, severe swelling and loosening of the sutures may cause the graft to move, and the surgery deemed unsuccessful. When this happens, it is good to wait until the surrounding tissues mature and try again

Tissue sloughing from the upper arch, though not frequent, has a lot to do with the size of the graft taken. Individual’s healing patterns differ, and the same applies to the pain threshold.

Any surgical procedure is bound to get infected at some point, thus delaying the healing process. Oral wounds are more exposed to continuous bacteria. Antibacterial or antiseptic mouth rinses are usually prescribed to control the multiplication of the bacterium in the first few days.

Dealing with the complications that may arise

A suggested approach is to create a plastic vacuum form of your upper arch. A thin, transparent plastic that perfectly fits your teeth is carefully trimmed to ensure sufficient coverage. It helps in providing pressure to the affected area and avoids irritation from food and the tongue.

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10 Tips for Getting Dental Implants

10 Tips for Getting Dental Implants

Dental care has improved in the recent years; however, millions of Americans still experience tooth loss due to injury, tooth decay, and periodontal disease.

Before, the only treatment alternatives available were bridges and dentures. Dental implants are accessible today and have provided significant relief to the dental community. If you’re considering dental implants, here are some tips you need to know for getting dental implants.

What Are Dental Implants? 

Dental implants are little titanium posts that are surgically attached to the jawbone to secure a crown or a bridge. The implants provide a stable base for permanent or removable teeth by acting as a replacement for the teeth roots.

Eligibility

Fundamentally, any person with a missing tooth or teeth can get implants. Nevertheless, before heading to get one, visit dental implant experts- like the ones at Vita Dental Spring for the oral examination.

Dental implants technique may proceed if you are healthy enough to undergo a routine dental extraction. Tobacco smokers, people with chronic disorders like diabetes, cardiac issues, or have undergone radiation therapy above the neck need assessment.

The Success Rate

Most implant dentists have reported a success rate of 95% and above during the procedure. This achievement varies depending on the dental wellbeing of the individuals, in addition to the expertise of the person who performed the procedure. 

The Procedure

Firstly, a team of experts experienced in restorative dentistry and oral surgery, develop an individualized treatment plan, that details your precise needs.

Although some patients report that implants involve less pain as compared to tooth extraction, the doctors administer local anesthesia during the procedure. Next, they place a small titanium post into the bone socket of the missing tooth.

During the healing process, which may take up to 12 weeks, the jawbone grows around the implanted metal post, attaching it securely in the jaw. After the implant has fused with the jawbone well, an abutment is then attached to the post to hold the new tooth firmly.

Your dentist creates a new tooth or teeth by making impressions of your teeth and creates a model of your bite based on this model. He/she will match the color of your natural teeth to the new teeth. The replacement tooth, also known as a crown, is then attached to the abutment.

Durability Of The Dental Implants

Dental implants require appropriate oral home care, together with regular professional check-ups and cleanings. Proper care ensures that they stay strong and remain stable for many years since they remain unexposed to dental diseases like tooth decay.

All-On-4® Treatment

This treatment technique involves substituting all the missing teeth in a jaw with only four implants.  This procedure comes highly recommended for patients with substantial bone deficiencies at the back of their mouth. Its very cost effective in that, four implants can support a full fixed bridge.

What To Expect After Getting Implants

Most people, who get dental implants, indicate that there is only a minor discomfort involved in the process.

Patients may experience mild soreness which can be eased using over-the-counter pain medications, such as Motrin or Tylenol.

Maintain the dental implants just like you would usually do for your real teeth. The oral routine includes brushing, flossing, and rinsing with an antibacterial mouthwash. Furthermore, keep up with the regular dental checkups.

Cost and Insurance Cover

Normally, the cost of replacing a single tooth with a dental implant is somehow similar to the price of using a conventional fixed bridge. Dental implants treatment is considered a cosmetic procedure which is not covered by a majority of dental insurers.

An appointment at Vita Dental Spring provides you with an opportunity to discuss in detail the financing options available. The dental office is also in a position to negotiate with the insurance provider and advice on a better payment plan, which will be beneficial for all parties involved.

Benefits of Dental Implants

Since implants are used to support and secure both full and partial dentures, they remain intact whether the denture is removable or fixed.

The dental implants are modified to look, feel, and fit exactly like all the other teeth in your mouth.

Implants help protect the natural, healthy teeth while still providing a base in your jawbone to support the problematic dental prosthesis.

Negative Effects

Aside from pain, numbness or tingling in your natural teeth and gums, it can also result in nerve damage.

Sinus problems may develop especially when dental implants are placed in the upper jaw and stick out into one of your sinus cavities.

Vita Dental Spring, one of the leading dental practices in Spring, TX has dental specialists who are always ready to provide comprehensive information about cosmetic dentistry and ensuring good client experience.

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10 Tips for Getting Bone Grafting

10 Tips for Getting Bone Grafting

Jaw bone loss is one of the most significant consequences of missing teeth. When you lose a tooth, the natural stimulation for bone growth, that’s created by the force of teeth chewing no longer occurs. In the first year alone after tooth loss, the width of the bone can reduce by 25 %. Vita Dental Spring would like to share with you more information about bone grafting.

Overview on Bone Grafting

It’s essential to understand that the jaw bone is what holds teeth in place. Generally, if you have a missing a tooth, you definitely would want to replace it with a dental implant or a bridge. With time, it begins to erode slowly, creating a hollow divot in the jaw. A bone grafting procedure replaces the missing bone thus repairing fractures that are very complex.

What Causes Bone Loss

Some of the causes of bone loss include:

The area of the jaw bone is damaged by infections or tumours

Area of the jaw where the teeth are extracted and no grafting procedure implemented

Dental Trauma

Preparations

The dental surgeon takes the X-rays of your jawbone before your grafting procedure. A CT Scan may be required as it is more accurate, to measure the exact height and width of the existing bone.

Types of Bone Graft

Socket Graft

Also known as alveolar ridge graft, this procedure uses demineralised, sterile human bone granules, packed into the tooth socket immediately after tooth extraction.

The hole covered with a protective collagen membrane, and the socket closed by using dissolvable stitches. Over time, your bone will fill the tooth socket and maintain the bone height long enough for you to have the area restored.

Block Bone Graft

In this case, additional bone from the patient is required if the amount of bone loss is high, and the cowbone material isn’t enough to create a foundation for the dental implant. The area of the missing tooth is cut open with a small incision, and the bone surface prepared. Afterward, the demineralised bone block used to build the area up and fastened in place using titanium screws.

Sinus Graft or Sinus Lift

In this procedure, the dentist performs an operation that adds bone to your upper jaw. He/ she creates a small window in the sinus, to help move the sinus membrane upwards. This small window then forms a cavity that’s filled with cowbone material. On completion, a collagen membrane is then applied to close the graft.

After the Procedure

Patients may experience mild discomfort for a few days and are usually manageable with antibiotics and anti-inflammatory medications like ibuprofen.

Avoid touching the affected area

Avoid vigorously spitting or mouth rinsing to prevent bleeding

Use saline based rinse to stop bleeding, or you can use wet tea bags on the sutured area. Tea comprises of tannic acid that aids in blood clotting and prevents further bleeding.

Apply an ice pack or moist heat pack on the part of the face near the swelling to minimise post-operative swelling.

Maintain oral hygiene as usual but brush gently

Advantages

Bone regeneration and strengthening to benefit both your health and appearance.

Halting a patient’s accelerated bone loss

Bone grafting is amongst the best tooth replacement choice available in cosmetic dentistry

Improving your appearance by restoring lost bone causing you to look younger than you are.

Bone grafting creates new opportunities for better mouth function and a more beautiful smile.

Cost

One of the determinant costs of dental bone grafting is the amount of bone material needed and where the source material will come from in addition to the kind of anaesthesia used. Obtaining source bones from another part of the body entails additional cost which then makes the price higher. This factor is the reason why cow bone is used more often by dentists.

Insurance Cover

Most dental insurances do not cover this procedure as it is considered a cosmetic treatment. However, there are some areas of the process that may be claimed by the insurance. An appointment with Vita Dental Spring is an opportunity to discuss which part is considered functional as opposed to cosmetic.

Risks Involved in Bone Grafting

After any surgical procedure, there is a high risk of infection, and that’s why antibiotics are prescribed. In some cases, the jaw bone may not integrate with the graft. If it happens, the dentist will either stitch a pack over the tear. Or if the rip is too big, the procedure ceases to continue until further notice. There is also the risk of the sinus membrane being torn or punctured during the process.

When to Call a Dentist

After the surgery, call the dentist immediately if you experience the following:

Bleeding doesn’t stop after a day

Pain and swelling worsens

Developing a fever

When sneezing or blowing nose, you feel like the graft has dislodged

Schedule your regular checkups with Vita Dental Spring today and get to know the cosmetic dentistry options available and advice on what is the best option for you.

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