There are plenty of reasons why someone may not love the way their smile looks. Maybe their teeth aren’t white enough or perhaps they’re crooked or worn down. Whatever the reason, there’s a cosmetic dentistry solution from your dentist in Lawrenceville that can transform your smile into one you’re proud of and can’t wait to show off. Better yet, many of these treatments are fast and easy so you can get a new look quickly.
Top 5 Cosmetic Dentistry Solutions
Depending on your specific wants and needs, your dentist in Lawrenceville can recommend the best cosmetic dentistry treatment, or combination of treatments, for your smile goals. Here are some of the most popular cosmetic dentistry solutions available to patients.
- Teeth Whitening
One of the easiest ways to boost your smile’s appearance is to change the color of your teeth. However, finding the best teeth whitening treatment in Lawrenceville can be confusing. From over-the-counter whitening strips and pens to glowing trays that you can buy online, there are tons of teeth whitening solutions available. It’s important to know that not all of these treatments are created equal. We recommend talking with your dentist about getting professional teeth whitening treatment before investing in any product. Your dentist will want to make sure that your teeth are healthy enough for whitening and can help make the best recommendation to get you the results you want.
- Dental Veneers
Veneers are a perfect cosmetic dentistry solution if you want to whiten your teeth and a traditional whitening product won’t work, if you have chipped, broken, or crooked teeth, or if you want to change the length or shape of your teeth. As the name suggests, veneers essentially cover up the natural tooth and are custom-made to give you the shape and color you’re looking for.
If veneers aren’t an option for you, there is an alternative. Cosmetic bonding can also cover up undesirable stains, fix tiny chips or cracks, or change the appearance of crooked or uneven teeth. Talk with your dentist to see if cosmetic bonding is right for you.
- Orthodontics & Clear Aligners
A crooked smile or overlapping teeth can make you want to hide your smile. Even those who had braces as a child can see their teeth shift over time. But thanks to advancements in dental technology, there are many types of orthodontics available to help straighten your smile. From traditional braces, clear braces, or clear aligners, you’re sure to find the right solution for your teeth and your lifestyle.
- Smile Makeover
Occasionally, your dentist will recommend a combination of cosmetic dentistry solutions to get you the smile you want. This is known as a smile-makeover or a full-mouth restoration and can completely transform your smile. Your dentist will create a custom plan for you that can fix things such as:
- Uneven Teeth
- Broken Teeth
- Stained Teeth
- A Gummy Smile
- Dark Metal Fillings
While cosmetic dentistry can enhance your smile, it’s still important to take care of your teeth so your treatment lasts and your mouth stays healthy. After all, oral health involves more than just your smile. Make sure you brush for two minutes every day, floss once a day, and see your dentist in Lawrenceville at least twice a year to keep your teeth, gums, and entire mouth protected.
Toothaches can happen at any time and they can happen to anyone. But that doesn’t necessarily make having a toothache feel any better. When it comes to finding out what’s causing your tooth pain, and how to treat it, there are few steps you can take. However, please note if you’re currently experiencing tooth pain, stop reading, and call your dentist in Lawrenceville immediately.
Know Your Pain
Different things can cause different types of tooth pain, so it’s important to try to identify what type of tooth pain you’re experiencing, if it gets worse with certain activities, and if it’s paired with pain anywhere else in your body. Let’s take a look at a few scenarios.
- If Pain Gets Worse When Eating Sweets you may have a cavity. A cavity, also known as tooth decay, is an area of your tooth that has, well, decayed. When cavities are little they’re easy to fix with dental fillings, and you may not even know you had a cavity or had any pain. It’s common for tiny cavities to cause little zings of pain when anything sweet touches them. Additionally, if cavities aren’t treated when they’re little, they will grow and start to affect the inner tooth nerves. That’s where the pain comes into play, either while eating sweets or not.
- If Your Pain is a Throbbing Type of Pain it can be harder to know what’s really causing your pain. Throbbing tooth pain can be a sign of a cracked tooth, an abscess, or simply something stuck in your gums. A cracked tooth may not immediately cause symptoms, and you probably won’t be able to see it, but if the crack affects the nerves you will feel throbbing pain. Additionally, an abscess, which is essentially a pocket of bacterial infection, can also cause throbbing but is also usually associated with other symptoms such as a bad taste in the mouth, pain in the ears or jaw, or swelling
- If The Pain Zings While Biting may be a sign of TMJ disorder, also known as TMD. This condition affects the jaw joints and can be caused by numerous things, including teeth clenching or a grinding habit. If your pain gets worse when chewing or biting, zings throughout your mouth, and is accompanied by headaches, jaw pain, or facial pain, talk to your dentist about TMJ disorder and treatment. If not treated, headaches can become worse, teeth can become damaged if you clench and grind, and it can become increasingly painful to chew.
Again, we can’t stress enough just how important it is to see your dentist in Lawrenceville for a proper examination, diagnosis, and treatment. However, there are a few ways you can reduce tooth pain at home.
At-home toothache relief can help make the pain more bearable before your dental appointment. Different people respond differently to each of these, so try a few options to find what works best for you and your situation.
- Floss. Simply flossing can help relieve a toothache, especially if the source of the pain is a forgotten piece of food that wedged its way between teeth or up under the gums. Make sure to floss gently and don’t overdo it. Too much flossing can cause more pain.
- Ice. Ice can reduce any swelling, reduce inflammation, and ease the pain. Make sure that you cover your ice pack in a towel or t-shirt before placing it on the outside of your cheek in the affected area. Leave it on for 15 minutes, give yourself at least a 15-minute break, and reapply.
- Anesthetic. Over-the-counter oral anesthetic can numb the pain, at least for a little while. Use your preferred anesthetic as directed.
- Salt Water. Salt water isn’t only good for relieving a sore throat, it can also help relieve tooth pain. Swish some warm salt water around in your mouth, spit it out, and repeat a few more times. The salt will help remove any fluid that may be putting pressure on the nerves.
- Anti-inflammatory Medicine. If you can take anti-inflammatories, they can help to reduce toothache pain by decreasing swelling and pressure on the nerves. Use these only as directed and no matter what the old wives’ tale tells you, do not put any pill directly on the gums or tooth!
Remember, these are temporary, short-term solutions. None are meant to be a permanent fix. Tooth pain is your body’s way of telling you something isn’t right, and you should still see your dentist in Lawrenceville for a thorough exam, diagnosis, and custom treatment plan to fix the pain at its source.
Everyone wants a bright, white smile. But everyday things can take their toll on teeth and cause staining or discoloration. From coffee to wine, to certain medications and beets, it seems that everything we consume can transform our pearly whites into dull, discolored teeth. But, as your dentist in Lawrenceville knows, we don’t need to sit back and simply accept a non-ideal smile. In fact, there are things you can do to protect against tooth staining.
- Use Straws
As wine or coffee passes over your teeth, it’s essentially bathing your teeth in staining agents. However, if you use straws instead of sipping directly out of a cup, the liquid bypasses teeth and doesn’t have a chance to stick around, soak in, and cause stains. You may want to consider buying a reusable straw that you can take anywhere. Some restaurants don’t hand out straws anymore, and reusable straws are more environmentally friendly.
- Switch Your Toothbrush & Toothpaste
Sometimes removing stains is as easy as using the right toothpaste and toothbrush. Whitening toothpaste can safely effectively remove surface stains caused by foods and drinks. Find a toothpaste with the ADA Seal of Acceptance, so you know you’re buying a brand that’s not only safe but also works. Switching from a manual toothbrush to an electric toothbrush can make brushing sessions more efficient and can help you brush each area of your smile for 30 seconds. We recommend talking with your dentist in Lawrenceville about which products are best for your teeth.
- Brush Your Teeth
You should brush your teeth twice a day for two minutes each time to remove bacteria and plaque buildup and to keep your teeth healthy. However, you should also try to brush your teeth after meals. Removing any staining foods or drinks that came in contact with your teeth during dinner quickly and efficiently can work wonders in reducing the likelihood and severity of stains. However, there are bound to be times when brushing your teeth after a meal isn’t possible. When that happens, rinsing your mouth out with water or chewing sugarless gum can also help.
- Dental Cleanings
Besides practicing good oral hygiene habits at home and after meals, it’s also crucial that you get professional dental cleanings twice a year. These cleanings can help remove surface stains and brighten your smile. They’re also a great time to talk with your dentist in Lawrenceville about any concerns you may have about the appearance or health of your smile so you can work together to find solutions that fit your wants and needs.
Tooth discoloration is almost inevitable, even if you follow the tips above perfectly. But we believe that nobody should have to live with a dull smile. Thankfully, there are plenty of cosmetic dentistry treatments available to fix anything that bothers you. From smile whitening to veneers, your ideal smile is possible. Call us today to schedule an appointment.
We’ve all been there — sitting in the dentist’s chair, feeling a little bit guilty about our brushing habits (or lack thereof), and worrying about what our dentist is about to say. But is there anything to actually worry about? Can your dentist in Lawrenceville really tell if you don’t brush your teeth as often or as well as you should? Well, it turns out that your dentist not only knows if you brush your teeth, but they also know a lot more about you, even if you don’t tell them.
Every time you visit your dentist in Lawrenceville, there are a few key things we’re looking for — cavities, gum disease, and oral cancer, among other things. But we can also know things about your habits such as:
- How Often You Floss
We can tell if you quickly flossed last night or in the parking lot before your appointment. We can also tell if this was one of the only times you flossed since your last visit. Your gums will appear red, maybe even a bit swollen, and there’s a good chance that they’ll bleed during your cleaning. Patients who floss regularly tend to have pink gums, no or little blood, and no swelling. So while we appreciate that last-ditch flossing effort, please try to floss more frequently.
- You Smoke
Even if you don’t share your tobacco habits with your dental team (which you should, by the way), they can still tell if you’re a smoker. The dead giveaway is often the smell. Even if you try to cover up cigarette smoke with gum or mouthwash, the smell can still linger around in the soft tissues of your mouth. Additionally, if your dentist in Lawrenceville notices any yellowing or staining of the teeth, they may also suspect tobacco use.
- You’re a Nail Biter
While nail-biting may seem like a non-dental issue, the truth is, this habit can greatly affect your oral health. Your dentist doesn’t even need to look at your hands to know if you bite your nails either. Nail biters often have tiny chips or cracks in their teeth and may even have shortened, worn down teeth and jaw pain… all of which can create additional problems such as cavities and TMD/TMJ disorder.
- You Drink A Lot of Soda
Everyone knows that sugary drinks such as soda can damage your teeth, but can your dentist actually know if you drink soda if you don’t tell them? Yes! And it’s not the sugar that gives it away. The acid in soda, and other acidic drinks, wear away at tooth enamel in a particular pattern, giving away your soda-drinking secret.
It’s important to share your health history and habits with your dentist in Lawrenceville, even if you’re embarrassed. Knowing what outside factors may be affecting your oral health is crucial to providing you great, personalized dental care and keeping you healthy. We’re not here to judge, but we are here to help.
Every time you visit your dentist in Lawrenceville you will most likely review your health history and discuss any changes that may have happened since your last appointment. This is an important part of making sure you get the best dental care, but why? Your dentist needs to know what may be going on in other areas of your body because sometimes whole-body problems such as diabetes can increase your risk of dental problems. During this Diabetes Awareness Month, we want to share a few reasons why diabetics may need more dental care than non-diabetics.
Diabetes & Gum Disease
One of the main reasons diabetics may need more dental care is because of the strong link between diabetes and gum disease. In fact, diabetics are at greater risk for gum disease than those without diabetes. Gum disease is an infection that affects the gum tissues. It’s caused by an increase in bacteria that have worked their way up under the gum line. Gum disease can put someone at risk for tooth loss and whole-body problems such as heart disease. But that’s not all. Gum disease, like any infection, can also cause blood sugar levels to increase, making diabetes more difficult to manage.
Caring for Your Oral Health
Because of the increased risk of gum disease, your dentist in Lawrenceville recommends that diabetics commit to following good oral hygiene habits. The best way to protect your teeth is to brush for two minutes every day and gently scrub your tongue to remove bacteria. Additionally, make sure you floss daily. Choose a toothpaste that contains fluoride for added defense, brush in gentle circles, and use a brush with soft bristles. This will help thoroughly clean your teeth without damaging them. And as always, make sure you also see your dentist every six months.
Measure Blood Glucose
The 30 million Americans living with diabetes know just how important it is to measure their blood sugar regularly. They also know that keeping blood glucose levels in check is crucial to protecting their health. Your dentist in Lawrenceville encourages all diabetics to measure and record their blood sugar levels daily. Your dental team may even ask for the results of some of your diabetes blood tests (the A1C or fasting blood glucose) or about your need for antibiotics before and after dental treatment for uncontrolled diabetes.
Eat Healthy, Stay Healthy
Avoiding or limiting sugary foods is an everyday part of a diabetic’s life, and it should come as no surprise that this can help protect your teeth, too. But eating healthy goes beyond restricting sugar. Diabetics can benefit from choosing fresh fruit, vegetables, whole grains, and lean meats. Of course, we always recommend working with your doctor to find a diet plan that’s right for you.
The team at our dental office in Lawrenceville believes in caring for our patients’ overall health. This means asking for health history, changes in health, and changes in medication. If you’re diabetic, sharing this information can help us better protect your oral and overall health.
We all know that good dental care helps protect teeth against cavities. But did you know that maintaining good oral health can also help protect overall health? In fact, research continues to show us that dental care is key to a healthy body. Join your dentist in Lawrenceville as we take a look at some of the ways oral health is connected to overall health.
When many of us think about dental care we immediately think about teeth. However, we can’t ignore the gums. Gum pockets provide an ideal place for bacteria to hide, and while some of the bacteria found in the mouth are harmless, some can lead to some serious problems including gum disease. According to the Mayo Clinic, study upon study is showing a strong connection between gum disease and many whole-body issues such as:
- Heart Disease
- Low Birth Weight
- Premature Births
- Alzheimer’s Disease
How Does This Happen?
The mouth is the first part of both our digestive and respiratory systems, and when an infection such as gum disease affects the mouth, it can easily transfer throughout the body and increase the risk of some of the concerns above. This is why it’s so important to take care of your oral health. Proper brushing and flossing, as well as seeing your dentist in Lawrenceville regularly, can help remove dangerous bacteria and protect your overall health.
Teeth Matter, Too
While there’s a clear connection between gum disease and overall health problems, we can’t forget about our teeth. When you think about it, our teeth definitely play a role in our overall health, too. If we do not take care of our teeth, the plaque and bacteria buildup will lead to gum disease and increase the risk of those larger healthcare concerns. But that’s not all. Our teeth help us chew and allow us to eat a well-balanced diet. Proper nutrition helps fuel our bodies and provides key nutrients we need to stay healthy and fight off germs and bacteria. Limiting the amount of sugar you consume, drinking plenty of water, and using the “Food Plate” guidelines are all good places to start.
Remember, your dentist in Lawrenceville is a key part of your healthcare team and can not only help keep your teeth healthy but can also help protect your overall health. Make sure to brush and floss every day and keep your dental appointments every six months.
October is National Dental Hygiene Month, an entire 31 days dedicated to our trusted and caring hygienists. This year, like most things, the celebration is a little bit different and has an appropriate theme — Faces of Courage. Sponsored by the American Dental Hygienists’ Association and Colgate, National Dental Hygiene Month strives to spread thanks to all hygienists and praise their commitment to keeping patients healthy. To help celebrate, your dentist in Lawrenceville wants to share some of the things dental hygienists do and show just how important they are to our office.
What Do Dental Hygienists Do?
Many patients believe that hygienists only clean teeth. The truth is, they do so much more. In fact, it’s not uncommon for patients to see and spend more time with their hygienists than their dentist, they do that much! While laws and rules differ from state to state and a hygienist’s specific duties can vary accordingly, there are some common things that many hygienists do on a daily basis such as:
- Getting Personal – When you first start seeing a new dentist in Lawrenceville, your hygienist will usually start by reviewing some paperwork that includes your oral health history and overall health history. They will update this information at every visit to make sure they’re providing you the best care that’s appropriate for you and your mouth and body.
- Cleaning Teeth – Of course, we all know that a dental hygienist’s main job is to clean teeth and remove any plaque or tartar buildup. Many hygienists will also perform an oral cancer screening, take x-rays, and measure your gum pockets to check for gum disease.
- Preventing Problems – While cleaning your teeth, your hygienist is also paying close attention to any areas of your mouth that may require your dentist in Lawrenceville to take a closer look. Dental hygienists may also apply fluoride or sealants to teeth to help keep acids and bacteria from damaging teeth or to help with tooth sensitivity.
- Teaching Tips – Another thing that hygienists are really good at is teaching patients the best way to brush, floss, and care for their teeth. They may even offer nutrition tips to further protect oral health.
How Do You Become a Dental Hygienist?
To become a dental hygienist, one needs to receive training and get certified. Many hygienists attend a local community college, technical college, dental school, or university programs to complete the recommended courses and training. It usually takes around two years to become a licensed dental hygienist, and many students will receive an associate’s degree. But some universities even offer four-year degrees, along with master’s degree programs. After a degree is received, hygienists will then take a licensing exam on either the state, regional, or national level.
This month, and every month, take time to thank your dental hygienist for all they do to help keep you healthy. And if you’re overdue for a dental cleaning, call your dentist in Lawrenceville to schedule an appointment with a dental hygienist today!
Getting a cancer diagnosis can be understandably scary, and some cancer treatments can cause some unwanted and unpleasant side effects throughout your body. Your mouth is no exception. While we understand that seeing your dentist in Lawrenceville may not be at the top of your to-do list, especially if you’re preparing to begin cancer treatment, it’s important to know that these visits can be an important part of keeping your body healthy and strong through cancer treatment. In fact, according to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, dental checkups before and during cancer treatment can prevent problems that may be serious enough to stop cancer treatment, which is the last thing you want to do.
- Decreased White Blood Cells
Cancer treatment can be really effective at killing cancer cells, but they can also damage or kill good, healthy, normal cells including white blood cells. White blood cells are important to help fight off infection. Without enough of them, the immune system is weakened. Why is this a concern for your dentist in Lawrenceville? Well, if you have a gum infection, for example, and then your immune system is weakened, the infection can cause complications to both your oral health and additional problems to your overall health.
- Calcium Reduction
If your oncologist recommends radiation therapy to your head or neck, it may also affect your dental health. These treatments tend to reduce calcium levels in the body, and since our tooth enamel consists of mainly calcium, this reduction can cause teeth to weaken, putting them at increased risk of cavities. But that’s not all. Radiation therapy may also damage salivary glands, reducing their ability to produce saliva. This results in dry mouth, which also puts your oral health at risk for additional problems, including cavities and gum disease. Your dentist in Lawrenceville may recommend fluoride to help strengthen enamel or a special rinse to help keep the mouth properly hydrated.
Many cancer treatments involve the use of chemotherapy, which can damage the mucosal tissues in the mouth. This may cause painful sores and a temporary condition called mucositis. Mucositis is the inflammation or ulceration of the mucus membranes anywhere along the digestive tract, from the mouth through the intestines, and can affect an estimated 40% of cancer patients. Your dentist in Lawrenceville may be able to help reduce discomfort caused by mucositis through laser dentistry or other treatments.
Your dentist is always an important part of your healthcare team, especially if you’re undergoing cancer treatment. Make sure to see your dentist at least every six months, and perhaps more during treatment, to help protect your oral health and, in turn, the rest of your body.
Our gums are an important part of our oral health. After all, they help hold our teeth in place and protect the tooth roots. But that doesn’t necessarily mean we want to see them when we smile, no matter how important they are. Nonetheless, there are some people whose gums show more prominently than others. This is known as a gummy smile. Now while there typically aren’t any problems associated with a gummy smile, they can make some feel self-conscious. When this is the case, your dentist in Lawrenceville has some options to help.
Causes of a Gummy Smile
Before we dive into some of the cosmetic dentistry options that can fix a gummy smile, it’s important to know what can cause it in the first place. Some of the most common causes of a gummy smile include:
- Abnormal Tooth Eruption
One of the most common causes behind a gummy smile is the way the teeth develop and erupt. When there’s too much growth in the gum tissue it can expand up and over, essentially hiding teeth. This can create the appearance of short teeth and a gummy smile. However, oftentimes the teeth are fully developed and can be uncovered. An abundance of gum tissue can be genetic or can be a result of medication of an infection in the gums.
- A Bad Bite
At your dental appointments, your dentist in Lawrenceville will ask you to bite down and touch your top teeth to your bottom teeth in order to check your bite alignment. This can help identify several things such as a potential problem with your jaw. A bad bite may also be the reason behind a gummy smile. For example, if the upper jaw protrudes too far outward can create a gummy appearance.
- Hyperactive Upper Lip
While something called a hyperactive upper lip may seem silly, it’s a very real thing. Sometimes the muscles in the upper lip and under the nose are too active. Over time, this overuse can bring the top lip up too high, exposing the gums. This cause of a gummy smile is often hereditary.
Your dentist in Lawrenceville will need to know the root cause of a gummy smile in order to recommend the best treatment for your specific situation.
Gummy Smile Treatment
Treatment of a gummy smile can vary greatly depending on the case. But some of the most common solutions are:
- Scaling & Root Planing
If the cause of a gummy smile is an infection, your dentist will probably recommend beginning with a scaling and root planing deep cleaning. This treatment can be very effective at removing infection and reducing inflammation that may make the gums appear larger than normal. If scaling and root planing treatment doesn’t give a patient the result they desire, there are additional treatments available.
- Crown Lengthening/Gum Recontouring
Other common and often successful treatments for a gummy smile are crown lengthening or gum recontouring, which are pretty much exactly what they sound like. These procedures remove excess tissue around the teeth and restructure the gum line allowing more of the white enamel to show.
A gummy smile caused by a bad bite may best be treated through orthodontics, including traditional braces or clear aligners such as Invisalign or ClearCorrect. Orthodontics can also help fix a bad bite in general and may relieve jaw pain or other oral health problems related to a bad bite.
If you notice more of your gums showing when you smile, laugh, or talk, and it bothers you, schedule a consultation with your dentist in Lawrenceville.
There’s a myth out there that says we’re almost guaranteed to lose some of our teeth as we get older. But a study by the American Dental Association says otherwise. In fact, more adults are keeping more of their natural teeth longer now than ever before. But that doesn’t ultimately mean that we’re all safe from tooth loss. Join your dentist in Lawrenceville as we take a closer look at some of the main reasons why our teeth fall out, some of which have nothing to do with age.
Periodontal disease, also known as gum disease, accounts for 70% of all adult tooth loss in America and is the main reason our teeth fall out. Gum disease is an infection of the gum tissue that can damage both the gum tissue and the jaw bone that hold our teeth in place. While anyone can develop gum disease, it does tend to affect older Americans more. For example, a little over 8% of Americans between the ages and 20 and 64 have gum disease compared to 17% for those over 65. The best way to combat the side effects of gum disease is to seek treatment from your dentist in Lawrenceville early.
Cavities are something that affects over 91% of Americans at least once in their lives, and they’re usually just a minor inconvenience. However, as with many things related to our health, if a cavity isn’t treated while it’s still small it can lead to other, more complex problems. As a cavity grows larger and deeper into the tooth, it will start to affect the tooth’s pulp, roots, and nerves. This can be painful and may require root canal treatment or tooth extraction and therefore, the loss of a tooth.
Our teeth can also fall out as a result of an accident. Many times these accidents occur from playing sports without a mouthguard but can also happen because of a fall, car accident, or other unexpected mishaps that involve trauma to the mouth. While nobody ever anticipates an accident and you can’t necessarily prevent them from happening, you can (and should) wear a mouthguard when playing sports.
Believe it or not, there are some reasons our teeth fall out that seemingly have nothing to do with our mouths. You see, there are several whole-body health problems that cause problems throughout the body as well as in the mouth, including tooth loss. Make sure you tell your dentist in Lawrenceville your entire health history, so they know if they need to pay extra special attention to your oral health. Some of the most common health problems associated with tooth loss include:
- High Blood Pressure
- Poor Nutrition
As we grow up, we do not need to simply accept the fact that we will lose our teeth. We can take matters into our own hands and actively work to protect our smiles for life by brushing and flossing our teeth every day, eating a well-balanced diet, avoiding tobacco use, and of course, seeing your dentist in Lawrenceville every six months