• Common Orthodontic Issues: What You Might Not Know

    Orthodontic problems are a lot more common than you might think. If they weren’t, then more than one million Americans and Canadians wouldn’t have to wear braces every year, then the U.S. dental implant and prosthetic market wouldn’t be projected to reach $6.4 billion by 2018, and then 2.3 million implant-supported crowns wouldn’t be made each year.

    Spaced Teeth
    Spaced teeth is an issues that happens when there’s too much room in the jaw for the teeth, which creates large gaps between each one. Not only can this be an unattractive problem, but a gross one, too, since food can get stuck in these gaps.

    A crossbite is when some of the teeth fit inside the teeth of the other arch, while others fit outside. This makes it difficult to chew, and can cause increased wear and damage on the teeth that do crossover.

    Crowding happens when there’s not enough room in the mouth for the teeth. There are two general solutions to this issue. First, teeth can be removed. With fewer teeth in the mouth, there will obviously be more room in the mouth for the other teeth. Second, it’s also possible to expand. Expansion would obviously create more room for the teeth, making it a perfectly sufficient solution to crowding.

    Those who think they may be suffering from any of these issues should ask their general dentists to recommend a local orthodontist who can provide them with the solution they may need, such as Invisalign, for example. Even if you don’t think you have an orthodontic issue, and just want a more attractive smile, you should still visit an orthodontist, as they can perform other cosmetic dental procedures, such as teeth whitening, which 88.8% of orthodontic patients actually request.

    If you have any questions about orthodontists, feel free to share in the comments.

  • Caring For Your Dentures: What You Need to Do

    Considering the fact that only one in four adults don’t brush their teeth twice a day — including a third of men — and the fact that only half of adults say they visit their general dentists every six months, it shouldn’t come as all that big of a surprise that about 15% of the edentulous population (those missing some or all teeth) has dentures made each year.

    What many might not realize, though, is that they can’t continue these bad habits. Even though they’ve underwent restorative dental procedures , their new teeth are not totally impervious. Here’s how dentures can be kept in good shape.

    Remove and Rinse After Eating
    After you eat, you need to remove and rinse your dentures. Just run some water over them to get the loose food particles out. You should also clean your mouth after you take your dentures out, too, using a soft-bristled toothbrush on your natural teeth, and gauze or a soft toothbrush on your tongue, cheeks, and palate.

    Keeping Your Dentures Clean
    Brush your dentures every day, and let them soak in a nonabrasive cleanser to get rid of food, plaque, and other deposits. Then, soak them overnight in a mild soaking solution, making sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions on cleaning. Before you put them back in your mouth, be sure to rinse them off, especially if they were just in a denture-soaking solution, as these cleaners can contain harmful chemicals that can cause vomiting, pain, or even burns if they’re swallowed.

    Avoid Damaging Your Dentures
    Damaging your dentures is a lot easier than you might think. You don’t want to use any abrasive cleaning materials, such as stiff-bristled brushes, strong cleaners, and harsh toothpastes. You also don’t want to use any whitening toothpaste, as these are especially abrasive. It’s also a good idea to avoid any products that contain bleach, as they can weaken dentures and even change their color. Don’t let your dentures soak in hot water, either, as it could warp them.

    Restorative dental procedures can get the edentulous population back into good shape, but those old patterns of poor dental practices can’t continue. If you have any questions, feel free to share in the comments.

  • The Top 3 Reasons to Visit a Cosmetic Dentist

    Of course, it’s important to see your dentist every six months for a good cleaning and checkup; remember, oral health is an important part of general health. But if you have concerns about your smile, then you may also want to see a cosmetic dentist and investigate your options. Here are three of the most popular dental procedures people visit cosmetic dentists for:

    • Professional Whitening Teeth coloration isn’t necessarily connected to oral health, but having gleaming white teeth can make you more confident and happier with your smile. Even having perfectly straight teeth doesn’t make people less likely to want whiter teeth; across the country, 88.8% of orthodontists say they’ve had patients who also requested tooth whitening. While there are an increasing number of at-home whitening kits becoming available, you should know that professional whitening provides much more dramatic results in a shorter amount of time. A dentist will also be able to discuss your options with you so you’ll end up with a solution that does no long-term damage to your teeth.
    • Invisalign Straightening Although traditional braces can be highly effective in straightening teeth, they’re not ideal for adults who want to project a professional appearance. In those cases, Invisalign may be a better fit. These clear trays are specially fitted by your dentist to progressively move your teeth into better alignment. You’ll want to wear the trays as often as you possibly can, but they can be removed for eating and for important events (this straightening method relies heavily on your self-discipline and willingness to wear the trays, which is why they’re often recommended for adults, but not for children).
    • Dental Implants Dental implants are both cosmetic and functional. As many as 178 million people in the U.S. are missing one or more teeth, and dental implants provide a solution for replacing anywhere between one tooth or a full set of teeth. Dental implants are actually inserted into the bones of the jaw, providing an anchor for a false tooth or set of teeth. They provide much more stability than traditional dentures, and prevent the bones around the mouth from shrinking around the holes left by absent tooth roots, which is the phenomenon that contributes to the “shriveled” look many people experience along with tooth loss. Currently, up to 3 million Americans have had dental implant procedures, and that number is growing by half a million each year.

    What are you hoping a cosmetic dentist will be able to do for you? Join the discussion in the comments.