Orthodontics is the branch of dentistry that corrects teeth and jaws that are positioned improperly. Crooked teeth and teeth that do not fit together correctly are harder to keep clean, are at risk of being lost early due to tooth decay and periodontal disease, and cause extra stress on the chewing muscles that can lead to headaches, TMJ syndrome and neck, shoulder and back pain. Teeth that are crooked or not in the right place can also detract from one's appearance.
The benefits of orthodontic treatment include a healthier mouth, a more pleasing appearance, and teeth that are more likely to last a lifetime.
ROOT CANAL TREATMENT
A root canal is a treatment to repair and save a badly damaged or infected tooth. The procedure involves removing the damaged area of the tooth (the pulp), cleaning and disinfecting it and then filling and sealing it. The common causes affecting the pulp are a cracked tooth, a deep cavity, repeated dental treatment to the tooth or trauma. The term "root canal" comes from cleaning of the canals inside the tooth's root.
What to Expect During a ROOT CANAL
X-ray â if a dentist suspects you may need a root canal, he will first take X-rays or examine existing X-rays to show where the decay is located.
Anesthesia â local anesthesia is administered to the affected tooth. Contrary to popular belief, a root canal is no more painful than a filling.
Pulpectomy â an opening is made and the diseased tooth pulp is removed.
Filling â the roots that have been opened (to get rid of the disease pulp) are filled with gutta-percha material and sealed off with cement.
Cosmetic Dentistry is dental work performed by a professional (usually a prosthodontist), that can include treatments and procedures to the mouth, face, teeth, and underlying bone formations that are designed to enhance, improve, or rehabilitate both the functional and aesthetic qualities of a patientâs teeth and other orofacial structures.
It is important to note that while cosmetic dentistry is very much about attaining a particular standard of beauty, it is also concerned with functionality. The teeth and mouth are essential to many critical life activities ranging from chewing and eating to speaking and smiling. In other words, cosmetic dentistry is more than just about looks, it's about health and lifestyle.
CROWNS AND BRIDGES
Bridges and crowns are fixed prosthetic devices that are cemented onto existing teeth or implants by a dentist or prosthodontist. Crowns are used most commonly to entirely cover or "cap" a damaged tooth or cover an implant. Bridges are commonly used to cover a space if youâre missing one or more teeth. They are cemented to natural teeth or implants surrounding the space where the tooth once stood.
Benefits of BRIDGES & CROWNS
In addition to strengthening a damaged tooth, bridges and crowns can be used to improve a toothâs appearance, shape, alignment and dental occlusion (bite). Gaps left by missing teeth can cause the remaining teeth to shift, which can result in a bad bite. Bridges and crowns help prevent this from happening.
A dental implant is a titanium post (like a tooth root) that is surgically positioned into the jawbone beneath the gum line that allows your dentist to mount replacement teeth or a bridge into that area. An implant doesn't come loose like a denture can. Dental implants also benefit general oral health because they do not have to be anchored to other teeth, like bridges.
Dental implants are metal posts or frames that are surgically positioned into the jawbone beneath your gums. Once in place, they allow your dentist to mount replacement teeth onto them.
Oral and maxillofacial surgeons focus on treating problems related to the hard and soft tissues of the face, mouth, and jaws (the upper jaw is referred to as the maxilla). While they sometimes work in a hospital, their practices are more often located in comfortable office settings. You may be referred to one of these specialists by your general dentist for a complex tooth extraction. Or, your orthodontist may send you for an examination if he or she suspects a problem with the alignment of your jaws.
It isn't necessary to have an oral and maxillofacial surgeon perform every type of oral surgery; many dentists are expert at the more common procedures, such as simple extractions.
Teeth spacing is a dental anomaly characterized by interdental spaces and lack of contact points between teeth. When spacing concerns both anterior and posterior teeth it is generalized, in contrast to localized spacing when only two or four teeth are involved.
Spacing is the opposite of crowding and is an excess of available space, resulting in gaps between the teeth. This generally occurs when the teeth are smaller than the available space. Protrusive teeth, missing or impacted teeth, or abnormal gum tissue attachments can also cause spacing.
Spacing should be corrected because it can:
Result in gum problems due to the lack of protection by the teeth.
Prevent proper functioning of the teeth.
Make your smile less attractive.
How can spacing of the teeth be orthodontically corrected?
Moving the teeth together and properly aligning them within the jaws can close the spaces.
EARLY CHILDHOOD CARIES
Early Childhood Caries is defined as the presence of one or more decayed (non-cavitated or cavitated lesions), missing (due to caries) or filled tooth surfaces in any primary tooth in a preschool-age child between birth and 71 months of age. The term "Severe Early Childhood Caries" refers to "atypical" or "progressive" or "acute" or "rampant" patterns of dental caries.
Early Childhood Caries (ECC), formerly known as nursing bottle caries, baby bottle tooth decay, night bottle mouth and night bottle caries, is a disease that affects teeth in children aged between birth and 71 months.
A deep bite can be easily corrected these days with one of the many effective orthodontic and restorative treatment options.
Malocclusion (or a bad bite) is the result of misalignment of the teeth and jaws, often caused by genetics, but can also be due to teeth crowding, bad, worn or decayed teeth, poor or failing dental work and missing teeth, particularly missing back teeth. Habits such as thumb sucking, lip or nail biting, clenching or grinding teeth can also contribute to the problems. Missing back teeth in an adult can create or exacerbate a âdeep bite' leading to collapse of the bite and lower face, giving a more aged appearance.
Although it may appear as merely an aesthetic issue a bad bite is in fact far more serious; it can lead to significant damage to the teeth and gums as well as headaches, temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder, hearing difficulties and digestive problems â all of which have physical and social implications.
The most common types of bite disorders are:
a deep overbite
a closed bite
a crossed bite
an open bite
What is deep bite?
Out of all the bite disorders, a deep overbite â when the upper front teeth almost completely overlap the lower front teeth â is the most detrimental to the teeth and health of the jaw joints. It also has an impact on facial aesthetics. Often the lower teeth line or lower dental arch has a âbell-shape', where the lower front teeth rise up much higher than the back teeth and sometimes it is so pronounced that the top edges of the lower teeth actually bite into the gum tissue in the roof of the mouth, potentially stripping the gums from the back of the top teeth. This can be a very serious issue and often leads to loss of the front teeth.
Dental veneers (sometimes called porcelain veneers or dental porcelain laminates) are wafer-thin, custom-made shells of tooth-colored materials designed to cover the front surface of teeth to improve your appearance. These shells are bonded to the front of the teeth changing their color, shape, size, or length.
Dental veneers can be made from porcelain or from resin composite materials. Porcelain veneers resist stains better than resin veneers and better mimic the light reflecting properties of natural teeth. You will need to discuss the best choice of veneer material for you with your dentist.
Periodontitis means "inflammation around the tooth" - it is a serious gum infection that damages the soft tissue and bone that supports the tooth. All periodontal diseases, including periodontitis, are infections which affect the periodontium. The periodontium are the tissues around a tooth, tissues that support the tooth. With periodontitis, the alveolar bone around the teeth is slowly and progressively lost. Microorganisms, such as bacteria, stick to the surface of the tooth and multiply - an overactive immune system reacts with inflammation.
Untreated periodontitis will eventually result in tooth loss, and may increase the risk of stroke, heart attack and other health problems.
Bacterial plaque, a sticky, colorless membrane that develops over the surface of teeth, is the most common cause of periodontal disease.
In dentistry, periodontics deals with the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of diseases involving the gums and structures which support teeth. There are eight dental specialties, of which periodontics is one. If you want dental implants, you see a periodontist.
Fluorosis is a cosmetic condition that affects the teeth. It's caused by overexposure to fluoride during the first eight years of life. This is the time when most permanent teeth are being formed.
After the teeth come in, the teeth of those affected by fluorosis may appear mildly discolored. For instance, there may be lacy white markings that only dentists can detect. In more severe cases, however, the teeth may have:
Stains ranging from yellow to dark brown
Pits that are highly noticeable
How Widespread Is Fluorosis?
Fluorosis first attracted attention in the early 20th Century. Researchers were surprised by the high prevalence of what was called âColorado Brown Stainâ on the teeth of native-born residents of Colorado Springs. The stains were caused by high levels of fluoride in the local water supply. This was fluoride that occurred naturally in the ground water. People with these stains also had an unusually high resistance to dental cavities. This sparked a movement to introduce fluoride into public water supplies at a level that could prevent cavities but without causing fluorosis.
A filling is a way to restore a tooth damaged by decay back to its normal function and shape. When a dentist gives you a filling, he or she first removes the decayed tooth material, cleans the affected area, and then fills the cleaned out cavity with a filling material.
By closing off spaces where bacteria can enter, a filling also helps prevent further decay. Materials used for fillings include gold, porcelain, a composite resin (tooth-colored fillings), and an amalgam (an alloy of mercury, silver, copper, tin and sometimes zinc).
Type of Filling is Best?
Gold fillings are made to order in a laboratory and then cemented into place. Gold inlays are well tolerated by gum tissues, and may last more than 20 years. For these reasons, many authorities consider gold the best filling material. However, it is often the most expensive choice and requires multiple visits.
Amalgam (silver) fillings are resistant to wear and relatively inexpensive. However, due to their dark color, they are more noticeable than porcelain or composite restorations and are not usually used in very visible areas, such as front teeth.
Composite (plastic) resins are matched to be the same color as your teeth and therefore used where a natural appearance is desired. The ingredients are mixed and placed directly into the cavity, where they harden. Composites may not be the ideal material for large fillings as they may chip or wear over time. They can also become stained from coffee, tea or tobacco, and do not last as long as other types of fillings generally from three to 10 years.
Porcelain fillings are called inlays or onlays and are produced to order in a lab and then bonded to the tooth. They can be matched to the color of the tooth and resist staining. A porcelain restoration generally covers most of the tooth. Their cost is similar to gold.
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