Posts for: June, 2017
Via a recent Instagram post, pop diva Ariana Grande became the latest young celebrity to publicly acknowledge a dental milestone: having her wisdom teeth removed. The singer of hits such as “Break Free” and “Problem” posted an after-surgery picture of herself (wearing her signature cat-eye eyeliner), with a caption addressed to her teeth: “Peace out, final three wisdom teeth. It’s been real.”
With the post, Grande joined several other celebs (including Lily Allen, Paris Hilton and Emile Hirsch) who have shared their dental surgery experience with fans. Will "wisdom teeth removal" become a new trending topic on social media? We aren’t sure — but we can explain a bit about the procedure, and why many younger adults may need it.
Technically called the “third molars,” wisdom teeth usually begin to emerge from the gums between the ages of 17 and 25 — presumably, around the same time that a certain amount of wisdom emerges. Most people have four of these big molars, which are located all the way in the back of the mouth, on the left and right sides of the upper and lower jaws.
But when wisdom teeth begin to appear, there’s often a problem: Many people don’t have enough space in their jaws to accommodate them. When these molars lack sufficient space to fully erupt (emerge), they are said to be “impacted.” Impacted teeth can cause a number of serious problems: These may include pain, an increased potential for bacterial infections, periodontal disease, and even the formation of cysts (pockets of infection below the gum line), which can eventually lead to tooth and bone loss.
In most cases, the best treatment for impacted wisdom teeth is extraction (removal) of the problem teeth. Wisdom tooth extraction is a routine, in-office procedure that is usually performed under local anesthesia or “conscious sedation,” a type of anesthesia where the patient remains conscious (able to breathe normally and respond to stimuli), but is free from any pain or distress. Anti-anxiety medications may also be given, especially for those who are apprehensive about dental procedures.
So if you find you need your wisdom teeth extracted, don’t be afraid to “Break Free” like Ariana Grande did; whether you post the results on social media is entirely up to you. If you would like more information about wisdom tooth extraction, please call our office to schedule a consultation. You can learn more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Wisdom Teeth” and “Removing Wisdom Teeth.”
During your lifetime you’ll eat thousands of meals — and generate a lot of force from chewing over the years. But thanks to a support system of gum tissues and bone, your teeth can normally handle it.
What your teeth can’t handle, though, are higher than normal chewing forces on a continual basis. This can happen if you grind your teeth, which can produce 20-30 times the normal force. The habit often arises in adults because of high stress and often occurs during sleep.
These abnormal forces can stretch the periodontal ligaments that hold teeth in place, cause the teeth to become loose and at increased risk for loss. The best treatment strategy is to reduce clenching with, for example, muscle relaxants or anti-inflammatory drugs or lower the effects with a mouth guard that won’t allow the teeth to make solid contact during clenching.
Your teeth can also become loose even with normal chewing forces if you have advanced periodontal (gum) disease. Gum disease arises from dental plaque, a thin film of bacteria and food particles left on teeth due to poor oral hygiene. As it builds up, it causes inflammation of the gum tissues resulting in bone loss and causing the gums to detach from the teeth, increasing pocket depth.
Our first step in this case is to treat the gum disease by removing plaque and calculus (tartar) from all tooth and gum surfaces. This includes infected areas below the gum line and around the roots, a circumstance that could require surgical access.
As treatment progresses in either of these scenarios the gum tissues heal and often regain their attachment to the teeth. But that can take time, so we may need to stabilize any loose teeth in the short term. The most common way is to splint them to other secure teeth. This is done by using a clear acrylic bonding material to join the loose teeth together with a strip of metal or other rigid material (like joining pickets in a fence).
When symptoms arise, quick action is the key to preventing lost teeth. If you notice swollen, painful or bleeding gums or especially loose teeth, don’t delay — contact us so we can begin treatment as soon as possible.
If you would like more information on the causes and treatments for loose teeth, 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 “Loose Teeth.”
How cosmetic and general dentistry services from your Westfield dentist can enhance your smile
Dental procedures have become state-of-the-art in the last few years. Now instead of just “fixing” your teeth, you can enhance both the look and function of your smile. Your dentists at Krause Dental in Westfield, IN, want to introduce you to cosmetic and general dentistry services that can enhance and beautify your smile.
Cosmetic dental procedures are designed to give you a beautiful smile by correcting unsightly issues with your teeth. Cosmetic dentistry procedures are typically performed to improve the look of your smile and are usually completed on non-painful teeth.
Some common cosmetic dentistry treatments available at Krause Dental include:
- Teeth whitening, to whiten your teeth up to 8 shades whiter
- Cosmetic bonding, to fix small chips, cracks and defects
- Porcelain veneers, to dramatically enhance the appearance of your teeth
General dental procedures are performed to relieve dental pain and restore the function of your teeth and your bite. General dental procedures are what most people think of when they think of dentistry, but dentistry has advanced far beyond conventional “drilling and filling.”
Some common general dentistry treatments available at Krause Dental include:
- Dental fillings, to relieve pain and restore decayed teeth
- Dental crowns, to restore badly damaged teeth
- Dental bridgework, to replace missing teeth
- Dental implants, to provide long-lasting tooth replacement
- Root canal therapy, to save a badly decayed or damaged tooth
These are just a few of the services available from your dentists in Westfield. For a complete listing of dental procedures, please visit the services page on the website at http://www.dentistwestfieldin.com/services.html
If dental procedures make you uncomfortable, don’t worry! Your dentists at Krause Dental offer sedation to help provide a relaxing, rewarding experience. You don’t have to let dental anxiety keep you from necessary dental treatment.
Cosmetic dentistry procedures can provide you with a dazzling smile you will be proud to show off. General dentistry procedures can restore the chewing function you need. Call the experts at Krause Dental in Westfield, IN Drs. Kenneth and Katie Krause, to find out more. Get started on the road to a beautiful, strong smile by calling today!