If you manage to go without needing a dental restoration, consider yourself lucky! About 91 percent of American adults have had a cavity once in their lives, according to a study from the Centers for Disease Control. Most of these spots of decay just need a filling, but more advanced cavities could need a root canal. The dentists at North Rivers Dental Associates in North Charleston, South Carolina, have discussed the reasons why root canals are needed and how you might be able to tell if you need one.
Why root canals are needed
The outside of your teeth is hard and has no nerve endings, but the inside of each of your teeth is connected to the rest of your body with soft tissues, nerves, and blood vessels. That's why minor cavities or chips on the surface of the teeth don't typically hurt. But if decay is left untreated or you have an accident that causes breakage, it can be very uncomfortable because the structures inside the tooth are no longer protected. They are very vulnerable to infection, and often the only way to stop it is to have a root canal from your North Charleston dentist, which completely removes all of the tissue and replace it with a strong rubber compound. A porcelain or metal crown finishes off the restoration to keep it stable and attractive.
Signs of dental infection
- Sensitivity: Mild tooth sensitivity can be caused for several reasons, but if one tooth in particular reacts to hot or cold temperatures with a painful, persistent tingling, it might be time to contact your North Charleston dentist for an examination. This symptom happens because the pulp is no longer insulated from heat or cold as it would be with healthy enamel.
- Pain when biting down: A sharp pain with every bite is definitely not normal, according to your North Charleston dentist. A tooth that has sustained a deep crack often causes this type of pain because the action of chewing shifts the outside against the nerves inside.
- Formation of abscess: The body's natural reaction is to try to rid itself of infection. Therefore, you may develop a blister-like lesion on the gums near a tooth that needs a root canal. You may also run a fever or have a bad taste in your mouth. This is what's known as an abscess, and it's a sure sign that you need to make an appointment with one of our dentists immediately.
If you're experiencing the symptoms listed above, or have further questions about your dental health, contact North Rivers Dental associates in North Charleston, South Carolina today!
Learn more about dental crowns and how they can restore your smile.
While no one wants to face dental problems, sometimes even the best measures can’t prevent them from happening. When issues set in it’s important that you turn to our North Charleston, SC, family dentists for treatment. In some cases, we might recommend getting a dental crown, a restoration that is made to look just like a real tooth. Could a dental crown benefit your smile? Let’s find out.
Ask yourself these questions:
- Are you dealing with a tooth that is cracked or broken?
- Do you have extensive and widespread tooth decay?
- Do you have a tooth that is malformed, discolored or unsightly?
- Do you have a tooth that is weak?
- Do you need to replace a missing permanent tooth?
If you answered “yes” to any of these questions then you could be a candidate for a dental crown. In fact, a lot of people have crowns. These tooth-shaped caps are often used for restorative purposes; however, they can also improve the look and shape of a tooth, too. Crowns are multipurpose!
In fact, crowns can also be used to replace a missing tooth, no matter whether you choose to get a dental implant or a bridge to treat your tooth loss. Crowns are used to cover an implant to complete the restoration and also be used to support and keep dental bridges firmly in place.
All crowns are custom-made based on measurements taken of your tooth. Here at North Rivers Dental Associates, we believe that everyone in North Charleston, SC, deserves a dental crown that is as close to a real tooth as possible. Trust us; no one will even be able to tell that you have a crown.
Crowns can be made from different kinds of materials; however, it’s more common to used tooth-colored materials like composite resin or porcelain, because they most closely match the look and color of tooth enamel.
North Rivers Dental Associates in North Charleston, SC, is here to provide your family with a full range of dental services. No matter whether you need to schedule a regular cleaning, chat about your orthodontic options or want to find out how restorative dentistry can help you, we are the dental experts you can rely on.
It's just natural that smiles change over the years, but is the darkening, yellowing and staining of tooth enamel irreversible? Your professional team at North Rivers Dental Associates in North Charleston, SC would tell you that you can have a noticeably brighter smile with safe and effective teeth whitening. Done in the office in about an hour, or more gradually at home, dentist-supervised whitening brightens and rejuvenates dull, yellow enamel. Here are more details.
The origin of stains
Deep, hard to treat intrinsic dental stains come from oral trauma, some prescription medications or medical treatments. Easier to treat extrinsic stains respond well to teeth whitening processes in North Charleston. This surface discoloration involving only the outer enamel and not the second tooth layer, called dentin, comes from:
- Intensely-colored foods and beverages
- Tobacco--either cigarettes or the smokeless variety
- Acidic foods which soften enamel, making it more susceptible to stains
- Poor oral hygiene habits
So as organic residues accumulate in the calcified matrix of tooth enamel, teeth darken and exhibit areas of discoloration. Just think about the brown stains on the front teeth of smokers. Fortunately, teeth whitening can help.
The whitening process
When you come to North Rivers Dental Associates for a cosmetic dentistry consultation, your dentist will examine your teeth and gums, looking for any signs of decay or periodontal diseases. These conditions would be addressed first before any whitening treatments.
However, if all is well, you can begin whitening right away. There are two options:
- In-office whitening which takes about an hour right in the dental chair
- At-home whitening which uses custom-fitted trays to apply the hydrogen peroxide gel over the course of a week
Either method brightens tooth color by up to 10 shades with little to no dental or gingival sensitivity.
Staying bright and white
Your smile can remain white and sparkling indefinitely if you:
- Limit dark foods and drinks
- Brush twice a day and floss daily
- Get six-month cleanings, examinations and whitening touch-ups at North Rivers Dental Associates
- Eliminate all tobacco usage
The American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry says that most people would like to have brighter smiles. Are you one of them? Why not contact North Rivers Dental Associates in North Charleston, SC for more details? Call (843) 553-7827.
Are you in need of a dental cleaning? Well, look no further. Your North Charleston, SC, dentist can help you.
An unhealthy oral regimen can break down enamel, allowing cavities to form. Cavities are formed when a person eats sugary foods and doesn't brush or floss. The result is the accumulation of plaque, which contains an acid-producing bacteria that breaks down the enamel, the protective layer covering your teeth. This exposes the sensitive layers of the tooth and allows bacteria to infect the pulp, unless the cavity is dealt with immediately.
Here are some procedures you may need to consider depending on the severity of your cavities:
- Root Canals: If your tooth develops an infection and the pulp of the tooth is infected, you may experience severe pain. The only way to treat this issue is for your doctor to clean out the canal and seal it.
- Dental Implants: If cavities have deteriorated your tooth, a dental implant may help you. Dental implants consist of replacing the tooth root with a titanium post and placing an abutment and crown on top. This will strengthen your teeth and improve the appearance of your smile.
- Sealants: Your dentist will clean and dry your tooth, then apply an acid gel on the surface of the tooth, the chewing surface will become rougher. Your doctor will then remove the gel, dry the tooth, and apply sealant onto the grooves and expose it to a special blue light to make the sealant hard. This will prevent bacteria from entering grooves and cracks in your teeth and deteriorating your teeth.
If you want to prevent any of these procedures, then you need to visit your doctor every six months for a regular dental cleaning.
Your North Charleston dentist will examine your teeth, diagnose any disease you may have, such as gum disease, then your dentist or hygienist will perform a regular cleaning. If there's gum disease, then your doctor will deep clean your teeth to help resolve the issue and induce healing.
If you have any questions and/or concerns or would simply like to ask a question about dental cleaning, just call your North Charleston, SC, dentist today!
Damaged teeth are embarrassing, but modern dentistry has state of the art technology to help you deal with this issue. Drs. Riley Cates, Brian Jaques, Ryan Emerson, and Maurice Weintraub offer their patients dental crowns at their North Charleston, SC office to mask those unsightly teeth so you have a beautiful smile.
What are dental crowns?
Crowns look like caps and are made of porcelain. Your North Charleston dentist takes an impression of your teeth and sends them to a lab where custom crowns are made just for you. In the meantime though, you're given a temporary crown.
Why get a dental crown?
During restorative procedures, such as root canals, a significant amount of natural tooth is removed. This leaves the tooth exposed to decay and susceptible to breakage, which is why a dental crown is placed over the tooth. The dental crown reinforces the tooth and allows it to withstand various degrees of pressure, meaning you can enjoy eating without the worry of ruining your tooth.
Here are some other procedures that use dental crowns:
- Attaching bridges
- Covering dental implants
- Covering an existing filling that may be dislocated
- Covering stained or discolored teeth
How do I take care of my crowns?
- It goes without saying that you need to brush twice a day and floss before bed. However, make sure to give special attention to the area around your dental crown. It's important to avoid plaque to reduce the chances of cavities forming and impacting the dental restoration.
- In addition to brushing and flossing, your diet can contribute to your crowns lasting up to 8 years, or more. Don't bite into ice and avoid sugary foods like soda and candy. Sugars contain the bacteria that produce plaque. So try eating healthy foods like apples and carrots that scrape the plaque off your teeth and incorporate more water into your diet.
- Bruxism, when someone grinds their teeth, can reduce how long your crowns last as well. So make sure you find a solution for it with your dentist, like getting a mouth guard or splints.
For more information on dental crowns, contact your North Charleston, SC dentists today!
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