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Common Dental Questions

Why are my teeth sensitive?

Teeth can be sensitive for a variety of reasons such as:

-Clenching or grinding

-Recession of the gums

-Poorly formed or weakend enamal

-Tooth decay

-Tooth Fracture or breakage

- Habitually eating or drinking acidic or sugary foods and drinks

- Tooth or mouth trauma

-Improper occlusion (bite)

What should I do to prevent gum disease and tooth decay?

Along with routine dental visits and exams, great teeth and gum care start at home. Brushing and flossing on a daily basis is the best way to take care of your teeth and gums on a continual basis.   By keeping to a daily routine you will greatly minimize the risk of gingivitis or tooth decay as you age.

What is Gingivitis?

Gingivitis is a condition caused when bacteria, plaque, and tarter rests on the teeth and gums for extended periods of time without being properly removed during routine home care  .  The gums can show signs of increased periodontal pocket depth, become irritated, inflamed and often bleed.  In order to prevent the condition from worsening regular hygiene visits are highly recommended.  During your visit, our experienced hygienist Amy will teach you the proper brushing and flossing techniques as well as create a personalized oral hygiene routine so that you may prevent further gum or periodontal issues.

What is Periodontal Disease?

Periodontal Disease is a quiet disease that begins with little or no symptoms. Although sometimes exaggerated by genetics, it is caused by bacteria, plaque, and tarter that surround the teeth and gums without being properly removed through a proper homecare routine.  The immediate condition often presents itself as ‘gingivitis’.  The gums become irritated, inflamed and often bleed.  If not properly treated, the condition worsens.  Noticeable symptoms now appear.  They include:

  • Bad Breath
  • Gum Recession
  • Increase in Periodontal Pocket Depth
  • Bone Loss
  • Gum Sensitivity to Acidic and Sugary Foods
  • Abscesses
  • Tooth Pain
  • Tooth Loss

How Do You Treat Periodontal Disease?

Periodontal Disease is a chronic condition that may need immediate and consistent routine attention.  Through a series of possible periodontal cleanings, root planing / scaling procedures, and local antibiotic therapies this condition can be controlled.  Periodontal surgery is only necessary for more advanced cases.

What Is The Difference Between Plaque And Tarter?

Plaque is a bacterial layer that forms on your teeth everyday and can be removed easily with a toothbrush and floss. Tarter, also known as calculus, is what forms on the teeth with plaque is not properly or routinely removed during home care. As the plaque rests on your teeth proteins and enzymes in your saliva calcify or mineralize the plaque making it hard and stick to the tooth like cement. Tarter can only be removed with instrumentation during a professional cleaning with our hygienist Amy.

Especially in consideration of the incidence of periodontal disease, tarter can very damaging when located below the gum line. The tarter can rest within the pocket that the tooth sits within, therefore widening the pocket and helping to push food and bacteria deep below the gums and closer to the bone. It is this condition that causes periodontal disease to advance and worsen very quickly.

Periodontal disease is a chronic condition that may need immediate and consistent routine attention. Through a series of possible periodontal cleanings, root plaining / scaling procedures, and local antibiotic therapies this condition can be controlled. Periodontal surgery is only necessary for more advanced cases.

What is the Difference Between a White Filling and a Silver Filling?

Silver Fillings, also known as an amalgam fillings,  have been around for decades.  Made from a metal alloy, it was the best restorative material in dentistry for several years, however things have changed . With growing concerns of mercury exposure our office has decided to be a mercury/amalgum free office. In addition, in some cases over time amalgum fillings have proven to be damaging to structural integrity of the teeth over time.   The metal placed within the tooth expands and contracts with the heat and cold placed in the mouth.  This expansion and contraction of the natural tooth, along with normal or excessive pressures applied to the teeth, can often result in tooth fracture and breakage. During routine exams Dr Koheil will monitor these teeth for any potential issues or concerns .

White Fillings, also known as composite fillings,  are often made of plastic or glass polymers. These cosmetic fillings allow us to fill a cavity with a substance that will look and feel just like your existing tooth structure. Unlike a silver filling that sometimes allows for bacterial leakage over time,  this restoration is created with a resin material that fits tightly into a tooth to prevent further decay.  Rather than a gray or silver material in your mouth, the composite color will match the natural color or your teeth.

How Can I Improve My Smile?

There are several ways in dentistry today to enhance your smile.  Certain procedures include:  

  • Tooth Whitening
  • Bonding
  • Porcelain Veneers
  • Porcelain Crowns

We have the capability to improve your smile using all or some of these procedures. For an exact consultation, please contact our office so that we may provide you with a customized treatment plan.


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