• What You Need to Know About Gum Disease

    Gum Disease treatment at Maple Avenue Family Dentistry

    Gum disease, more officially called periodontal disease, affects many people from all walks of life. Symptoms can range from mild gum irritation and swelling to serious damage to the gums and even the jaw bones. If not treated, gum disease can worsen and spread, making it vital to practice preventative care and stop infections before they become severe.

    What Causes Gum Disease?

    The human mouth is filled with bacteria. Some of these bacteria aid in digestion while others dwell there after entering from outside sources, such as food or contaminated surfaces. These bacteria often stay to feed on the microscopic food particles left behind in a person’s mouth, and the result is a sticky plaque that clings to the patient’s teeth.

    Plaque is usually removed through brushing and flossing, but it’s possible to miss the plaque in some crevices. Once it hardens, plaque is called tartar and can only be removed by special dental equipment during a teeth-cleaning appointment. Even in its hardened state, tartar can harbor many bacteria, and these bacteria can cause gum inflammation and an infection called gingivitis.

    If allowed to progress untreated, gingivitis will worsen and become periodontitis, which causes the gum to recede from the base of the tooth. Sometimes pockets are created, which may lead to abscesses. The receding gum line also contributes to rapid tooth decay and bone deterioration. Ultimately, gum disease can lead to tooth loss and, in severe cases, bone loss from the jaw.

    Treating Gum Disease

    Fortunately, gum disease is a slow process that responds well to treatment. Early stages can be reversed completely through routine teeth cleanings and daily dental care. Even advanced gum disease can be effectively treated, and solutions can be found for the pain and tooth loss often associated with periodontitis.

    If you’re currently experiencing gum swelling, halitosis or other symptoms of gum disease, it’s important to meet with a dentist before more permanent damage occurs. You can contact us to make an appointment for a dental exam and to discuss any questions or concerns you may have about maintaining the well-being of your teeth and gums.

  • Treating Sleep Disorders with Dental Devices

    Sleep Disorders treatment with Dental Devices

    If you have recently been diagnosed with one of the major sleep disorders, you may be unaware of the latest treatment options. Sleep apnea can disrupt the body’s normal nighttime rhythms. You may even find yourself suffering from snoring, headaches, TMJ (temporomandibular) pain, or bruxism, which is the excessive grinding of teeth while asleep. Because many of these issues are intimately tied to the mouth itself, dentists should be able to help. With a reputable dental professional attending to your disorder, you can eliminate your discomfort and once again pass the night hours in the gentle arms of sleep.

    Sleep apnea itself, which involves an obstruction in the respiratory passageways during slumber, is often accompanied by excessive snoring. Snoring is especially frustrating for significant others who are trying to get a good night’s rest themselves. Dentists use special oral appliances to calibrate the mouth so that the obstruction is no longer present. There are two major devices that are used. Mandibular advancement devices are mouthguards that force the lower jaw into a more open position. Tongue-retaining devices, on the other hand, use splints to prevent the tongue from falling toward the back of the mouth. Dentists and orthodontists, of course, will need to ensure that the devices fit the mouth properly.

    The benefits for longtime apnea sufferers are generally quite profound. If you have a habit of sleeping on your back or your stomach, then your new oral device will likely lead to some considerable improvement. Likewise, if you are prone to grinding your teeth during the night, a mouthguard will prevent this from occurring. In most cases, the headaches that have been associated with the bruxism will also stop. When you can begin the day without any residual pain, you will also be happier and more productive at work or school.

    Reputable dentists will likely be capable of finding a solution to your sleep disorder. During the preliminary consultation, the dentist will ask you for a full list of symptoms. Once the dental professional has an idea of which particular sleep disorder is present, a comprehensive treatment plan can be devised. With the help of a sophisticated oral device, your passageways can be cleared from obstruction. For help with sleep apnea and other similar maladies, contact your dentist today for further assistance.

  • Gummy Smiles: What Are My Treatment Options?

    Gummy Smiles

    When most people smile, you see a row of teeth that look beautiful and full. Unfortunately, this is definitely not the case for some and they have what is known as a gummy smile. Gummy smiles are when you smile and there are only a small row of teeth and mainly gums. There are two causes for gummy smiles and they both can be treated using different dental procedures. One of the first steps for you to take would be to visit the dentist and get a diagnosis and best treatment option that happens to be available to you.

     

    Visiting the dentist is going to help you figure out what is the best treatment option for you. Your dental professional will be able to take x-rays and figure out what needs to be done if you are looking for a fuller and more pronounced smile. Believe it or not, many people have the problem of a gummy smile and many of them are taking care of it using a variety of different procedures. It is up to you to decide with your dentist which one is best suited for you.

    One of the main causes for a gummy smile would be smaller or less defined teeth. Small teeth are something that you probably developed after losing all of your baby teeth, so you may not feel like there is anything you can do for this issue. The great thing to know is that the problem can be fixed with either dentures or veneers. If your teeth are in reasonably good shape, veneers are probably the best option available to you. Veneers are a simple procedure that will take just about one or two visits and you will walk out with gorgeous teeth that look amazing when you smile.

    If your teeth are not in good shape and you are dealing with a lot of missing teeth or decay, dentures might be another option that is available to you. Dentures, like veneers, can be fitted specifically to your mouth and you can wear them regularly for a more beautiful smile. Dentures no longer look fake and are now being made to look completely realistic so that no one will even know that you are wearing them. Like veneers, dentures will take several visits for you to be fitted for them and then shaped to fit your mouth specifically.

    As you can see, there are several dental options available to you if you have a gummy smile and would like to feel more confident. Veneers are often the most popular choice for individuals in this circumstance because it is minimally invasive and requires barely any drilling. The best thing for you to do would be to contact the office for more information and to make an appointment to see a dentist. The dental professionals will help you to figure out what option is best suited to meet your needs so that you can finally regain your self-esteem and have the smile you’ve always wanted.

  • Tooth Whitening at Home or in the Dental Office

    Tooth Whitening

    Your smile says a lot about you and can help to increase your overall self-esteem. If your teeth are yellowed and stained, you may just not feel like smiling because you do not like the way that you look. One of the best things for you to do would be to have your teeth whitened using professional services either at home or in the dental office. If you are wondering whether to whiten at home or in a dental office, there are some pros and cons to both of these methods.

    When whitening at home, it is up to you to choose the type of product you want to get the job done. There are literally dozens of different products on the market for you to choose from and not all of them are truly effective at whitening teeth. In fact, some of these products are quite expensive and only get your teeth maybe a shade or two lighter than what they already are. It will be up to you to decide which product is going to be the right choice and you need to make sure that you follow all instructions carefully so that you are able to get the best results possible.

    When you make the decision to have in-office whitening done, you are going to be getting professional whitening results that are far greater than any product you can buy in a local drugstore. When you go for in-office whitening, a professional will use a variety of gels and creams on the teeth to ensure that your teeth are going to get whitened several shades. The other benefit to in-office whitening is that it takes about an hour for immediate results as opposed to some products that do not start showing results for several weeks.

    If you are in need of very quick and professional whitening results, your best option might be in-office teeth bleaching that is done for you by an expert. One thing to keep in mind is that tooth whitening is considered a cosmetic procedure, so your dental insurance might not cover it for you. In general, professional in-office whitening is several hundred dollars. The cost factor is something to think about before you make a decision on whether to whiten your teeth at home or if you should come into the office to have it done by the experts.

    When your teeth are bright white and shining, you feel more confident and you are more likely to show them off to family and friends. It really is up to you to decide on whether or not in-office whitening is right for you. Despite the price factor, in-office tooth whitening delivers the quickest and most drastic results. If you are planning an event or need to whiten your teeth quickly for a special occasion, this just might be what you want for yourself. Be sure to call the office for more information concerning in-office whitening procedures and booking an appointment for yourself if you want to have it done.