Posts for: July, 2017
Before you consider cosmetic changes to your smile, ask yourself one question: how's your bite? How your teeth are positioned and aligned doesn't just affect their function — it also affects your appearance. A proper bite is foundational to a beautiful smile — and it deserves your attention first.
Here are 3 important steps for addressing your bite problem on your way to a more attractive smile.
Get an orthodontic evaluation. Only a dentist or orthodontist can determine if your teeth are properly aligned and working well with each other — and if not, why. With their knowledge and expertise they'll be able to tell you what specific bite problem (malocclusion) you have and the best treatment to correct it to support any future cosmetic enhancement.
Consider your tooth-movement options carefully. If you have a malocclusion, your dentist or orthodontist may recommend correction before undertaking other cosmetic work. In most cases, you'll have two choices. The first is traditional metal braces, which uses wires held in place and anchored by brackets cemented to the teeth. They're effective, but must be fixed in place and aren't considered attractive. The other choice is clear aligners, which use custom removable plastic trays worn in sequence to gradually move teeth. They're easier for oral hygiene and are hardly noticeable to others, but may not work in every bite situation.
Don't slack on the retainer phase of treatment. The day will come when the braces or aligners come out of your mouth for good. But your realignment project isn't over — you'll need to wear a retainer appliance for a while. Re-aligned teeth can relapse to their former positions, so it's essential you wear a retainer to keep them where they've been moved. Without a retainer, all the time and effort invested in your bite will have been to no avail.
In a nutshell: get the big picture about your bite, choose the treatment best for you and follow through on every phase. The end result will be a solid platform for the smile you've always dreamed about.
If you would like more information on orthodontic treatments, 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 “The Magic of Orthodontics: The Original Smile Makeover.”
Some signs of oral health problems are easy to recognize. For instance, a toothache can be a sign of a cavity, while gums that bleed when brushing or flossing can be an indication of gum disease. For other oral health concerns, such as root canal problems, many people are unfamiliar with the symptoms and do not know when to see a dentist. Recognizing the signs and symptoms of root canal problems and seeing a dentist right away can prevent the problem from getting worse. Dr. Phillip Tully is your dentist in Columbus, GA, for root canal treatment.
Signs and Symptoms
There are several indications of the need for a potential root canal. If you develop any of these signs or symptoms, see a dentist in Columbus for treatment. Common signs and symptoms of root canal problems include:
- Persistent pain and pressure in the mouth
- Severe tooth or mouth pain
- Sharp pain when biting down while eating
- Pain and sensitivity when consuming hot or cold foods and beverages
Root Canal Treatment
Root canals are needed when the soft pulp material at the center of a tooth is infected and causes an abscess to form below the root of the tooth. An untreated abscess can cause other oral health problems to develop and lead to extraction of the infected tooth. Root canal treatment makes it possible to preserve the tooth, eliminating the need for extraction. Root canal treatment involves clearing away the infected pulp from inside the tooth. Once the pulp is removed, the area is cleaned and filled, much like a cavity and the tooth is restored.
Benefits of Root Canals
There are several benefits to having root canal treatment. Your Columbus area dentist can advise you if root canal treatment would work for you. Some of the benefits of root canal treatment include:
- Avoiding extraction of infected teeth
- Preserving the natural teeth
- Strengthening infected teeth that have become weak
- Restoring normal tooth functioning, such as biting and chewing
- Protecting surrounding teeth by reducing the strain on them
- An uncomplicated procedure similar to filling a cavity
There are several signs and symptoms of root canal problems. See a dentist in Columbus, GA, right away if you are experiencing these signs or symptoms. Root canal treatment can preserve an infected tooth and prevent the infection from spreading. To find out if you might need root canal treatment, schedule an appointment with Dr. Tully by calling the office at (706) 323-6491.
Everyone knows that in the game of football, quarterbacks are looked up to as team leaders. That's why we're so pleased to see some NFL QB's setting great examples of… wait for it… excellent oral hygiene.
First, at the 2016 season opener against the Broncos, Cam Newton of the Carolina Panthers was spotted on the bench; in his hands was a strand of dental floss. In between plays, the 2105 MVP was observed giving his hard-to-reach tooth surfaces a good cleaning with the floss.
Later, Buffalo Bills QB Tyrod Taylor was seen on the sideline of a game against the 49ers — with a bottle of mouthwash. Taylor took a swig, swished it around his mouth for a minute, and spit it out. Was he trying to make his breath fresher in the huddle when he called out plays?
Maybe… but in fact, a good mouthrinse can be much more than a short-lived breath freshener.
Cosmetic rinses can leave your breath with a minty taste or pleasant smell — but the sensation is only temporary. And while there's nothing wrong with having good-smelling breath, using a cosmetic mouthwash doesn't improve your oral hygiene — in fact, it can actually mask odors that may indicate a problem, such as tooth decay or gum disease.
Using a therapeutic mouthrinse, however, can actually enhance your oral health. Many commonly available therapeutic rinses contain anti-cariogenic (cavity-fighting) ingredients, such as fluoride; these can help prevent tooth decay and cavity formation by strengthening tooth enamel. Others contain antibacterial ingredients; these can help control the harmful oral bacteria found in plaque — the sticky film that can build up on your teeth in between cleanings. Some antibacterial mouthrinses are available over-the-counter, while others are prescription-only. When used along with brushing and flossing, they can reduce gum disease (gingivitis) and promote good oral health.
So why did Taylor rinse? His coach Rex Ryan later explained that he was cleaning out his mouth after a hard hit, which may have caused some bleeding. Ryan also noted, “He [Taylor] does have the best smelling breath in the league for any quarterback.” The coach didn't explain how he knows that — but never mind. The takeaway is that a cosmetic rinse may be OK for a quick fix — but when it comes to good oral hygiene, using a therapeutic mouthrinse as a part of your daily routine (along with flossing and brushing) can really step up your game.