Posts for: October, 2016
It would seem the best time to turn your attention to orthodontic problems with your child is when their permanent teeth have come in around early puberty. In fact, you should be attentive much earlier at around 6 years of age.
Here are 3 reasons why an early orthodontic evaluation could be beneficial to your child’s dental health.
We may be able to detect the first signs of a malocclusion. Also known as a poor bite, it’s possible for an experienced dentist or orthodontist to notice the beginning of a malocclusion as the permanent teeth start coming in between ages 6 and 12. Crowding of teeth, abnormal space between teeth, crooked, protruding or missing teeth are all signs that the teeth are not or will not be coming in properly and some type of treatment will eventually be necessary to correct it.
We might spot problems with jaw or facial development. Not all malocclusions arise from faulty erupting teeth position: sometimes they’re caused by abnormal development of the jaw and facial structure. For example, an orthodontist can detect if the upper jaw is developing too narrowly, which can create a malocclusion known as a cross bite. The difference in the source of a malocclusion will determine what present or future treatment will be needed.
We can perform “interceptive” treatment. While braces won’t typically be undertaken until the permanent teeth have come in, there are other treatments that can “intercept” a growing problem to eliminate or lessen future treatment needs. Orthodontists may recommend appliances that help guide incoming teeth, coax impacted teeth to come in fully or expand portions of the upper jaw to normal dimensions.
As with other areas of health, the earlier orthodontic problems are found the better the chances of a successful and less interventional outcome. By having your child examined orthodontically you may be saving money and future difficulties.
If you would like more information on when to begin monitoring bite development in your child, 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 “Early Orthodontic Evaluation.”
Know the warning signs that it’s time to visit one of our Ringwood dentists.
One of the unfortunate things about your mouth is that it doesn’t always tell you when there are issues. Most of the time, decay and even gum disease lurk in your mouth without you ever knowing until you visit one of our Ringwood, NJ general dentists, Dr. David Kahn or Dr. John Pergolizzi, for a routine checkup. Of course, there are some symptoms that may actually be warning you that you need a root canal.
One of the most common signs that a patient may need a root canal is tooth pain. Of course, pain doesn’t always mean that a root canal is necessary. Signs of a dental infection that may be serious enough to warrant getting a root canal in Ringwood include:
- Dental pain that gets worse when eating
- Dental pain or sensitivity to hot or cold that lingers
- Tooth discoloration or darkening
- Swelling or tenderness of the gums around the infected tooth
- A pimple-like growth on the gums near the tooth
If you notice any of these symptoms it’s always best to play it safe and visit our general dentist for care. Especially if you are dealing with persistent or severe dental pain, a root canal can save the tooth and eliminate your symptoms.
What should I expect from a root canal?
Many people have given a root canal a bad reputation but it’s a simple and easy procedure that is really no worse than having a tooth filled. Before you even get your root canal, we will need to run x-rays to see how severe the damage is.
During your procedure, the very first step is to numb the area with a local anesthetic. This will ensure that you don’t feel anything during your procedure. Numbing the area can be a major relief for many of our patients since most are dealing with pretty bad pain at this point.
Once the tooth is numb we will make an opening in the crown of the tooth and then use our special tools to remove the decayed or inflamed dental pulp. The inflamed dental pulp is what has been causing you all this pain. Then we will thoroughly clean out the tooth before filling the tooth back up and sealing it. In many cases, a dental crown is also made to fit over the tooth to prevent further damage.
If you are dealing with dental pain then you are dealing with a true dental emergency that requires immediate care. Call our Ringwood, NJ dental office today and turn to Dr. Kahn and Dr. Pergolizzi for the care your smile deserves.
If we could go back in time, we all probably have a few things we wish we could change. Recently, Dr. Travis Stork, emergency room physician and host of the syndicated TV show The Doctors, shared one of his do-over dreams with Dear Doctor magazine: “If I [could have] gone back and told myself as a teenager what to do, I would have worn a mouthguard, not only to protect my teeth but also to help potentially reduce risk of concussion.”
What prompted this wish? The fact that as a teenage basketball player, Stork received an elbow to the mouth that caused his two front teeth to be knocked out of place. The teeth were put back in position, but they soon became darker and began to hurt. Eventually, both were successfully restored with dental crowns. Still, it was a painful (and costly) injury — and one that could have been avoided.
You might not realize it, but when it comes to dental injuries, basketball ranks among the riskier sports. Yet it’s far from the only one. In fact, according to the American Dental Association (ADA), there are some two dozen others — including baseball, hockey, surfing and bicycling — that carry a heightened risk of dental injury. Whenever you’re playing those sports, the ADA recommends you wear a high-quality mouth guard.
Mouthguards have come a long way since they were introduced as protective equipment for boxers in the early 1900’s. Today, three different types are widely available: stock “off-the-shelf” types that come in just a few sizes; mouth-formed “boil-and-bite” types that you adapt to the general contours of your mouth; and custom-made high-quality mouthguards that are made just for you at the dental office.
Of all three types, the dentist-made mouthguards are consistently found to be the most comfortable and best-fitting, and the ones that offer your teeth the greatest protection. What’s more, recent studies suggest that custom-fabricated mouthguards can provide an additional defense against concussion — in fact, they are twice as effective as the other types. That’s why you’ll see more and more professional athletes (and plenty of amateurs as well) sporting custom-made mouthguards at games and practices.
“I would have saved myself a lot of dental heartache if I had worn a mouthguard,” noted Dr. Stork. So take his advice: Wear a mouthguard whenever you play sports — unless you’d like to meet him (or one of his medical colleagues) in a professional capacity…