Posts for: April, 2015
While most tooth loss stems from dental disease or injury, another major cause is a condition known as cracked tooth syndrome. What begins as a microscopic crack in an individual tooth’s enamel could ultimately grow to a fracture that endangers its survival.
Most often related to age-related brittleness, expansion and contraction of the enamel surface because of hot foods followed by cold foods and beverages, or grinding habits, cracked tooth syndrome usually occurs in three phases. The first phase is the emergence of miniscule cracks in the outer enamel known as craze lines. These can be very difficult to detect even with x-rays, and usually calls for specialized detection methods such as probing with a sharp instrument (an explorer) or fiber-optic lighting with dye staining to highlight enamel abnormalities. If you have pain symptoms, we may ask you to bite down on a bite stick or rubber pad to locate the area by replicating the sensation.
In the next phase, the craze line grows into a crack that penetrates below the enamel into the tooth’s dentin. Pain becomes more prominent and the risk of infection increases. Left untreated, the crack may enter the third phase, a full break (fracture) occurring deep within the inner layers of the tooth. The deeper the fracture occurs, the more serious the danger to the tooth, especially if the pulp is exposed.
The best treatment approach is to attempt to detect and treat a crack as early as possible. Craze lines and moderate cracks can usually be repaired with restorative materials like composite resins. A deeper crack extending into the pulp may require a root canal treatment and the tooth covered with a permanent, protective crown.
If, however, the fracture is too deep, the tooth may be beyond repair and will need to be extracted and replaced with a dental implant or permanent bridge. In any event, the sooner a cracked tooth is discovered and treated, the greater your chance of avoiding pain, discomfort, and, ultimately, tooth loss.
If you would like more information on cracked tooth syndrome, 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 “Cracked Tooth Syndrome.”
When it comes time to visit Harris Parkway Dental Care in Fort Worth to replace your missing or badly damaged teeth, you likely have several options, including dentures, bridges and dental implants. Of these three, dental implants are generally the optimal choice. Here are four ways dental implants from Harris Parkway Dental Care in Fort Worth can improve your smile.
1. Fill in Any Missing Gaps
No one wants to show off a smile that is full of gaps or holes. Thankfully, with dental implants, you don't have to. Whether you are missing one tooth or even all of your teeth, dental implants are a great way to complete your look for a smile you can be proud to show off.
2. Replace Any Badly Damaged Teeth
On the other hand, having a mouth full of badly damaged teeth can be almost just as bad as not having any teeth at all. Whether your teeth are worn away, cracked, broken, badly decayed or severely discolored, if they cannot be repaired, replacing them with dental implants from Harris Parkway Dental Care in Fort Worth may be the next best option.
3. Get a Dependable Smile
While you could also replace your missing teeth with dentures, dentures do have several drawbacks. For example, dentures can slip and slide and even fall out of your mouth unexpectedly. You can lose them and you can forget to put them in. Dental implants are much more dependable, however. Once the dentist sets them, you can pretty much forget them and simply care for them like normal teeth!
4. Get a Healthy Smile
Another common tooth replacement is bridges. The problem with bridges, however, is that your surrounding teeth must be shaved down to accommodate the bridge. Dental implants, on the other hand, leave all of your remaining teeth unaffected.
Your smile says a lot about you. Make sure it sends the right message. Visit Harris Parkway Dental Care in Fort Worth for dental implants and get a beautiful, healthy and dependable smile you can be proud to show off today!
Imagine how different things would have been for movie star James Dean, had he not managed to replace the front teeth he lost as a youngster. According to one biography of the 1950s heartthrob, Dean's teeth were knocked out while he was swinging around on a homemade trapeze. Because his smile was restored, Dean was able to land the plumb movie roles that catapulted him to stardom.
This is perhaps the ultimate example of how a smile makeover can create new opportunities for a person. But opinion polls confirm that nearly 90% of adults feel an attractive smile is an important social and career asset. And, an almost equal percentage of adults feel that their smile could use some improvement.
Are you unhappy with your smile? Is a smile makeover something you've ever thought about? Dear Doctor magazine has come up with a great list of questions you can ask yourself to figure out if you would benefit from this life-changing experience:
- Do you avoid smiling in photos?
- Are you conscious about spaces and gaps in your teeth?
- Are your teeth making you look older than you feel?
- Have you held back a smile?
- Do you feel that your teeth are stained or too yellow?
- Do you hold your hand up in front of your mouth when speaking or laughing?
- Do you notice areas of excessive tooth wear that make your smile look older?
- Do you have little teeth and a gummy smile?
- Are your teeth crooked, chipped or crowded?
- Do you wish you had someone else's smile?
If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, please come in and see us. We have an amazing array of cosmetic procedures available to us — far more than what was available to James Dean in the 1950s. These options range from relatively inexpensive teeth whitening treatments to more permanent cosmetic solutions such as porcelain crowns and veneers. Together we can come up with a plan to give you the smile you've always dreamed about.
If you would like more information about what a smile makeover could mean for you, please contact us or schedule an appointment. You can learn more about smile makeovers by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Beautiful Smiles by Design.” Dear Doctor also has more on “The Impact of a Smile Makeover.”