Posts for category: Dental Procedures
Even with modern prevention and treatment advances, losing teeth in later life is still a sad but common part of human experience. Just as generations have before, many today rely on dentures to regain their lost dental function and smile.
But although effective, dentures have their weaknesses. The most serious: they can't prevent jawbone deterioration, a common problem associated with tooth loss.
Bone health depends on chewing forces applied to the teeth to stimulate replacement growth for older bone cells. When teeth are gone, so is this stimulation. Dentures can't replicate the stimulus and may even accelerate bone loss because they can irritate the bone under the gums as they rest upon them for support.
But there's a recent advance in denture technology that may help slow or even stop potential bone loss. The advance incorporates implants with dentures to create two hybrid alternatives that may be more secure and healthier for the supporting bone.
The first is known as an overdenture, a removable appliance similar to a traditional denture. But instead of deriving its support from the gums alone, the overdenture attaches to three to four implants (or only two, if on the lower jaw) that have been permanently set into the jawbone. This not only increases stability, but the implants made of bone-friendly titanium attract and foster increased bone growth around them. This can help slow or even stop the cycle of bone loss with missing teeth.
The second type is a fixed denture. In this version, four to six implants are implanted around the jaw arch. The denture is then secured in place to these implants with screws. It's a little more secure than the overdenture, but it's also more expensive and requires good quality bone at the implant sites.
If you've already experienced significant bone loss you may first need bone grafting to build up the implant sites for these options, or choose traditional dentures instead. But if you're a good candidate for an implant-supported denture, you may find it provides better support and less risk of continuing bone loss than traditional dentures.
If you would like more information on implant-supported dental restorations, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Overdentures & Fixed Dentures.”
Are you concerned about a tooth and think it needs removal? Find your best oral surgery options at Frederick Dental Group. Dr. Dave Verma and Dr. Arpana Verma perform both simple and surgical extractions in-office, and they offer sedation options to keep you comfortable. Are you concerned about a tooth and think it needs removal? Learn here the reasons why your dentist may recommend tooth extraction.
Extracting a tooth
The American Dental Association (ADA) cites three top reasons for tooth extraction:
- Disease, such as periodontitis (gum disease), infection or deep decay
- Accidental trauma, from a fall or motor vehicle mishap
In addition, teeth may complicate orthodontic correction or impede the eruption of adult teeth. Extra teeth may be located on the upper or lower jaws and often disrupt the alignment of other teeth. Finally, some teeth may be impacted or encased in bone or gum tissue. Many adolescents have impacted wisdom teeth and frequently undergo oral surgery procedures at Frederick Dental Group.
Getting a tooth extracted
If you or your Frederick, MD, dentist is concerned about a tooth, we will examine it and the surrounding gum tissue. Digital X-rays and CT scans help us to determine the problems the roots and supporting bone structure. Sometimes a patient needs this procedure to improve their oral health, function, and dental alignment.
If that's your case, Dr. Verma and the team at Frederick Dental Group will ensure you're in complete comfort throughout the procedure. The doctor may use oral conscious sedation, local anesthetic, nitrous oxide (laughing gas), oral conscious sedation or a combination of these medications to eliminate pain and keep you relaxed throughout.
Recovery is generally mild. And as you recover, you'll eat a soft diet and avoid drinking with a straw. If needed, Dr. Verma will prescribe antibiotics to heal infection and recommend appropriate medications to keep you comfortable. Ice to the jaw reduces swelling and may be recommended depending on the procedure.
Find out more
Don't chance bigger problems, if you're in need of an extraction or just an opinion on whether an extraction is needed or other procedures could suffice give us a call at (301) 624-1001 to schedule an appointment at Frederick Dental Group in Frederick, MD.
Find out if your smile could benefit from oral surgery.
From impacted wisdom teeth to severe jaw joint issues, there are several reasons why someone may need to turn to oral surgery to correct a dental problem. Luckily, Dr. Dave Verma and Dr. Arpana Verma in Frederick, MD, have dealt with a variety of cases and can expertly diagnose whether or not you may require oral surgery. Here are the top reasons why someone might need surgery and how to tell if it’s time to schedule a consultation with us!
This mostly affects wisdom teeth, which are the third set of molars to develop, and usually erupt in your late teens or early twenties. At our Frederick office, we will be able to see them in x-rays to determine if they are growing in straight or if they might come in crooked.
In most cases, wisdom teeth will be impacted, which means that they don’t fully emerge through the gums. They can also grow in crooked and cause damage to neighboring teeth, which is why wisdom teeth are often removed. Even if they aren’t causing you issues, they could cause problems down the road, which is why they should be extracted as soon as possible.
Issues with the Jaw Joint
A lot of people deal with a condition known as temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder, which is caused by dysfunction within the jaw joints. Those with TMJ disorder may experience jaw pain and stiffness, and may even hear a popping or clicking sound when they open or close their jaws. While most of the time symptoms of a TMJ disorder can be treated with simple at-home care, if the symptoms that you are experiencing are severe and don’t respond to treatment, oral surgery may be then recommended to correct joint dysfunction.
If you are a healthy adult who is missing at least one tooth, you may be considering getting dental implants, a metal restoration that functions like tooth roots. In order to place the dental implant into the jawbone, surgery will have to be performed, though this procedure is minimal and pain-free. Implants look and feel completely natural, and before you know it, you will forget that they are even there!
If you are dealing with any of these issues above, or if you are noticing changes in your smile that give you pause, then it’s important to let the dentists at Frederick Dental Group provide your smile with the care it deserves. Call our Frederick, MD, dental office at (301) 624-1001 to schedule an appointment today!
Long ago dental work could be painful and stressful—often for both patient and practitioner. Thankfully, that time is long past: today, most procedures are painless in large part due to local anesthesia.
Local anesthetics are numbing substances applied to specific areas of the body like the teeth and gums to temporarily block pain during a procedure. And because they only affect a localized area of the body, you remain conscious and alert throughout the procedure.
To achieve the level of numbing necessary for dental work, we often need to deaden the gums using a needle to deliver the anesthetic. But then this poses a secondary pain concern—the needle stick itself.
Again, topical anesthesia comes to the rescue in the form of a swab, patch or spray applying an anesthetic directly to the top layer of the gums at the injection site. This numbs the area and prevents you from feeling the needle stick. It's highly probable, therefore, that from start to finish you won't feel any discomfort during your dental work except perhaps for a little pressure.
Local anesthesia truly is a game changer for dental care—and not just for the patient. A dentist who's concerned about their patient's comfort level may work hurriedly to complete a procedure. But if their patient is relaxed, the dentist can work calmly and methodically. The result is better, more focused care.
For all its improvements in the patient experience, though, there has been one consistent complaint—the numbness that often lingers for a while after the procedure is over. But there have been advances in recent years that have helped reduce this irritation: new anesthetic agents (even some that can reverse the anesthetic effect) and fine-tuned dosages can help keep residual numbing to a minimum.
Not all procedures like routine teeth cleanings or enamel shaping require anesthesia. But when it's appropriate, local anesthesia can make your next dental visit much more pleasant.
If you would like more information on how anesthesia benefits your dental care, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Local Anesthesia for Pain-Free Dentistry.”
Dental disease doesn’t discriminate by age. Although certain types of disease are more common in adults, children are just as susceptible, particularly to tooth decay.
Unfortunately, the early signs of disease in a child’s teeth can be quite subtle—that’s why you as a parent should keep alert for any signs of a problem. Here are 3 things you might notice that definitely need your dentist’s attention.
Cavities. Tooth decay occurs when mouth acid erodes tooth enamel and forms holes or cavities. The infection can continue to grow and affect deeper parts of the tooth like the pulp and root canals, eventually endangering the tooth’s survival. If you notice tiny brown spots on their teeth, this may indicate the presence of cavities—you should see your dentist as soon as possible. To account for what you don’t see, have your child visit your dentist at least twice a year for cleanings and checkups.
Toothache. Tooth pain can range from a sensitive twinge of pain when eating or drinking hot or cold foods to a throbbing sharp pain. Whatever its form, a child’s toothache might indicate advancing decay in which the infection has entered the tooth pulp and is attacking the nerves. If your child experiences any form of toothache, see your dentist the next day if possible. Even if the pain goes away, don’t cancel the appointment—it’s probable the infection is still there and growing.
Bleeding gums. Gums don’t normally bleed during teeth brushing—the gums are much more resilient unless they’ve been weakened by periodontal (gum) disease (although over-aggressive brushing could also be a cause). If you notice your child’s gums bleeding after brushing, see your dentist as soon as possible—the sooner they receive treatment for any gum problems the less damage they’ll experience, and the better chance of preserving any affected teeth.