4 Dental Implant Post-Treatment Care Tips

A dental implant is directly inserted into the jawbone. As you are most likely thinking, this indeed results in some initial soreness and discomfort. The countdown until the anesthetic wears off begins as soon as you sit up. With proper post-treatment care, however, the discomfort can be managed and the healing process begins. Here are four tips to consider after receiving a dental implant.

1. Manage Pain and Swelling

Pain levels vary with dental implants. If pain medication isn’t prescribed, common over-the-counter painkillers will usually do. Prescription pills can usually be supplemented with aspirin or ibuprofen if the pain persists. The worst pain is generally within the first six hours after the anesthetic wears off. Swelling is quite normal and can take three days to peak, but it can be managed using an ice pack, or even a bag of frozen peas if there’s one sitting in the freezer.

2. Tend to Oral Hygiene

This is important every day, but even more so after a dental implant procedure. Brush your teeth gently after the surgery. Rinse with saltwater starting 24 hours later. The ideal mix is one tablespoon of salt to eight ounces of water. Two to three times a day, rinse by swishing the water gently in your mouth. Then let it drip out, and into the drain.

3. Eat Any Nourishing Food You Can

Eating may be the last thing on your mind, but it’s important to obtain nourishment. You may be advised to have just liquids, soups, yogurt, or a milkshake. Hot foods should be avoided, as should popcorn, nuts, rice, or anything else that may get stuck in the wrong place. Also, avoid straws, and gradually progress to eating solid foods, over a few days. Whatever you do, do not skip meals; the nourishment will help you heal faster and feel better.

4. Catch Up on Rest

You may wonder why bed rest is associated with oral surgery (a couch works just as well). It’s important not to do anything strenuous; lifting or bending can increase bleeding and swelling, and even pain. Standing up too quickly can cause lightheadedness, so get up slowly after lying down. You should also cut back on your regular exercise routine for three to four days, until you can restore regular fluid and caloric intake. Rest up and follow these tips, and you should be more comfortable after dental implant surgery and heal faster.

Reasons to Extract Wisdom Teeth As Soon As Possible

1) A sac, similar to the amniotic sac surrounding a baby in utero, surrounds impacted wisdom teeth. If the impacted wisdom tooth is not extracted and the sac perforated and removed, this sac encasing the impacted wisdom tooth my form a dentigerous cyst, which could then turn into an ameloblastoma. Both these pathologic entities can damage the bone and cause bone resorption, requiring much bigger surgeries to correct.

2) An impacted wisdom tooth can damage the tooth anterior to it by placing pressure on that anterior tooth. Decay on the anterior tooth as well as periodontal disease (bone loss) between the impacted tooth and the anterior tooth is also common.

3) Ideally, impacted teeth are extracted when the roots are ¼ to ½ formed, often when the patient is age 16 – 20.At this stage, the lower wisdom teeth are normally many millimeters from the inferior alveolar nerve of the mandible. Additionally, the sac surrounding the impacted wisdom teeth is “youthful” and very lubricating, aiding in atraumatic extraction. When extracted at this stage, surgery is minimized.

4) It is often recommended that impacted wisdom teeth be extracted prior to age 35. At this age, the roots are fully formed, long and often curved and the sac surrounding them is not as lubricating. The fully formed roots are often closer to the lower inferior alveolar nerve and the upper wisdom teeth roots are elongated into more bone, causing more complicated surgery and bone loss when extracted. After the age of 35, unless there is a pressing reason of decay, periodontal disease, cyst formation or pain, these impacted teeth are often just observed with periodic x-rays to ensure pathology is not developing vs. extraction.

5) Bottom line, it is normally best to have impacted wisdom teeth extracted between the ages of 16 and 20, before the roots are fully formed.

How to Prevent Staining Your Dental Veneers

A dental veneer is usually made of a thin porcelain shell. It is bonded to the front of the tooth and takes the place of the natural enamel. A challenge for those who get dental veneers is keeping them from staining. Although they’re coated with a stain-resistant resin, veneers can be damaged and stained by eating certain foods, especially those that wear away this resin.

To keep your teeth whiter with veneers, it is best to avoid tea or coffee. Consuming these drinks with a straw can avoid staining, because the liquid will bypass your teeth. Red wine can also stain veneers, so it’s important to consider how you’re going to drink it, unless it is avoided altogether. Another habit will increase the chances of staining your veneers – smoking. There is no way to prevent smoking from staining veneers, and causing a host of other potential problems, unless you stop.

Brush and Floss Normally

If you have dental veneers, brush your teeth right after eating. A quick rinse will suffice if you are eating out. Whitening toothpaste is a preferred choice for many people, but it is abrasive and can wear down the resin on your veneers, taking their stain-proof power away.

Be Careful of What You Eat

Hard or very crunchy foods can damage veneers and their resin, which will also be worn away by hot sauces, lemons, and other acidic foods. Candy, tough meat, and gum should be avoided. Foods that typically leave stains should as well, including curry, jam, tomatoes, red pepper, and ketchup. Temporary veneers require even more care, and you should resort to only eating soft foods such as cut-up chicken, pasta, eggs, bananas, or white fish. With permanent veneers, any hard food or dark liquid is bad, and alcohol will quickly ruin the bonding material.

Wear a Bite Guard

If you grind your teeth, the dentist can make a bite guard. This is a device worn while you sleep to ease the stress on the teeth. It can protect your veneers so they last for longer and remain stain-free.

Keep Up with Appointments

Dentists usually schedule a visit one week after veneers are put in. They evaluate their placement and if there are effects on the gum tissue. Veneers may require periodic maintenance but, if you take the right measures to protect them and prevent staining, your teeth will remain sparkling white for many years.

5 Reasons to Consider Same-Day Crowns

When you’re in need of a dental crown, you want the process to be quick and convenient. Traditionally, crowns require two visits.

During the first visit, needed dental work will be done, such as drilling out cavities, performing a root canal, or trimming a tooth that is cracked, chipped, or broken. During the first appointment, impressions can be taken in order to create a suitable crown for the tooth.

At this point, patients will have to schedule another appointment to have the crown placed over the tooth, giving the dental office time to have the crown manufactured by an outside lab.

What if you could get your crown the same day? This added convenience would make the process much quicker and easier all around. Many dental offices are beginning to offer same-day crowns thanks to on-site fabrication technology, and there are several benefits you’ll enjoy in the process.

1. Expedience

Obviously, getting a crown the same day as your dental work is done and impressions are taken is much quicker. Since you’re already numb, you can receive your crown as soon as it’s ready and get back to your life.

2. Convenience

Coming in for two appointments not only means taking time off work, but going through the process of numbing and everything else twice. This is not convenient for most busy patients.

In addition, skipping the temporary crown reduces the risk that you’ll do further damage in the days or weeks until your second appointment. The last thing you want is to exacerbate the problem, and having a permanent crown placed the same day will reduce the potential for further issues to develop.

3. Reduced cost

Multiple visits mean more expense, as do additional procedures like having a temporary crown placed and receiving anesthesia twice, just for example. When you do it all in one appointment, you can reduce the overall cost, including any out-of-pocket expense.

4. Durability

The crowns fabricated in a dental office are just as durable and reliable as those made in third-party labs. You’ll enjoy the same longevity as you would with crowns crafted the traditional way.

5. Confidence

Walking out of your appointment knowing you have a permanent solution in place can give you the confidence to eat, drink, smile, and laugh normally, instead of having to wait and wonder how a temporary crown will hold up. In addition to the many other benefits you’ll enjoy when you opt for a same-day crown, you’ll be able to get back to normal much faster after suffering damage to your tooth.

Why Your Smile Could Be the Key to a Successful Job Interview

There are a lot of factors involved in nailing a job interview. First, you have to be qualified for the position, but this is usually a prerequisite to getting an interview.

From there, you have to find a way to impress hiring agents. You can prepare by conducting mock interviews at home with the help of family and friends as a way to feel comfortable answering common questions. You might also do some research on the company to show how interested you are in joining the team.

Naturally, your appearance matters, as well, and dressing in office attire shows that you understand appropriate dress codes and corporate expectations. What you might not realize is just how important your smile can be when it comes to the interview process. Here are a few reasons to polish up your pearly whites.

Make a Good First Impression

A smile can instantly improve how you are perceived, making you appear more attractive and likeable, so it’s important to go into the interview process just as prepared to smile as you are to shake hands. A little practice couldn’t hurt, but you’ll want to avoid flashing a smile that’s forced or fake.

Show Sincerity

It’s important to know that merely slapping a smile on your face isn’t necessarily enough to endear others to you. Many people have a nervous smile, or automatically smile in response to certain situations.

Be careful not to smile mechanically or try to force a smile during your interview. When it comes naturally, you’ll convey a sense of inner calm, happiness, and sincerity that interviewers are likely to be drawn to. You can also put your interviewers at ease and form an instant bond that helps to make you a top pick, all things being equal.

Increase Confidence

We all know that a beautiful smile is one of the first things people notice, and if yours is less than perfect, it could erode your confidence and cause nervous tension during an interview. A radiant smile could do just the opposite.

You should therefore invest in your smile – maybe not as much as your education, but enough to boost your confidence and increase your chances of putting that college degree to good use. Proper home care is a must, as is scheduling regular dental visits.

You may also want to consider options like braces, teeth whitening, or other cosmetic procedures if dental imperfections are an impediment to your confidence and your ability to nail an interview.

Frequently Asked Questions About Dental X-Rays

Most people who have been to the dentist are familiar with the drill, so to speak. You undergo examination and cleaning, along with tests to determine the overall state of your oral health. During some appointments, patients also receive dental x-rays.

While the purpose of having a check-up and cleaning is relatively clear – keeping your teeth clean is the best way to stave off infections and other issues – you might have some questions about the necessity for dental x-rays. Here are a few frequently asked questions you may want answers to.

Why do I need dental x-rays?

Dental x-rays are just another tool in the oral care arsenal. The cleaning and visual examination of your teeth, gums, and the rest of your mouth serve to keep the exposed portions of your mouth healthy.

However, a lot can go on beneath the gum line or inside of teeth themselves that dentists cannot see without x-rays. While you might wonder why you need x-rays when there’s no outward indication that something is wrong, this tool can provide early warning of potential problems (like small cavities), allowing for treatment before they become much bigger issues.

How often should I get x-rays?

The frequency of x-rays varies by dental office and by patient. Some patients may only need x-rays annually, while others need them every six months, or even more frequently, depending on developing conditions.

Dentists make careful assessments about if and when patients need x-rays, carefully weighing the benefits and potential risks before deciding on any tests or courses of treatment. If x-rays are recommended, it is likely with good reason.

Why do I need different types of x-rays?

There are a few different types of dental x-rays, each with different benefits. You may need multiple types of x-rays in order to create a complete assessment of your oral health.

Bite-wing x-rays are the most common, and they are so called for the plastic wing you bite on to hold the film in place while the x-ray is taken. This type of x-ray shows hard-to-reach molars and bicuspids, where cavities are most likely to form.

There are also periapical x-rays that show an entire tooth all the way to the root; panoramic x-rays that display the entire mouth, including both jaws; and a variety of other x-rays with specific purposes.

Should I be worried about radiation?

This is a concern for many patients, but the amount of radiation involved in dental x-rays is minimal and patients are provided with all possible protections, including a lead-lined apron to cover portions of the body that could be exposed to x-rays. Plus, you’ll only receive x-rays when necessary so as to avoid undue risk.