Posts for: April, 2016
It might seem that supermodels have a fairly easy life — except for the fact that they are expected to look perfect whenever they’re in front of a camera. Sometimes that’s easy — but other times, it can be pretty difficult. Just ask Chrissy Teigen: Recently, she was in Bangkok, Thailand, filming a restaurant scene for the TV travel series The Getaway, when some temporary restorations (bonding) on her teeth ended up in her food.
As she recounted in an interview, “I was… like, ‘Oh my god, is my tooth going to fall out on camera?’ This is going to be horrible.” Yet despite the mishap, Teigen managed to finish the scene — and to keep looking flawless. What caused her dental dilemma? “I had chipped my front tooth so I had temporaries in,” she explained. “I’m a grinder. I grind like crazy at night time. I had temporary teeth in that I actually ground off on the flight to Thailand.”
Like stress, teeth grinding is a problem that can affect anyone, supermodel or not. In fact, the two conditions are often related. Sometimes, the habit of bruxism (teeth clenching and grinding) occurs during the day, when you’re trying to cope with a stressful situation. Other times, it can occur at night — even while you’re asleep, so you retain no memory of it in the morning. Either way, it’s a behavior that can seriously damage your teeth.
When teeth are constantly subjected to the extreme forces produced by clenching and grinding, their hard outer covering (enamel) can quickly start to wear away. In time, teeth can become chipped, worn down — even loose! Any dental work on those teeth, such as fillings, bonded areas and crowns, may also be damaged, start to crumble or fall out. Your teeth may become extremely sensitive to hot and cold because of the lack of sufficient enamel. Bruxism can also result in headaches and jaw pain, due in part to the stress placed on muscles of the jaw and face.
You may not be aware of your own teeth-grinding behavior — but if you notice these symptoms, you might have a grinding problem. Likewise, after your routine dental exam, we may alert you to the possibility that you’re a “bruxer.” So what can you do about teeth clenching and grinding?
We can suggest a number of treatments, ranging from lifestyle changes to dental appliances or procedures. Becoming aware of the behavior is a good first step; in some cases, that may be all that’s needed to start controlling the habit. Finding healthy ways to relieve stress — meditation, relaxation, a warm bath and a soothing environment — may also help. If nighttime grinding keeps occurring, an “occlusal guard” (nightguard) may be recommended. This comfortable device is worn in the mouth at night, to protect teeth from damage. If a minor bite problem exists, it can sometimes be remedied with a simple procedure; in more complex situations, orthodontic work might be recommended.
Teeth grinding at night can damage your smile — but you don’t have to take it lying down! If you have questions about bruxism, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can learn more by reading the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Stress & Tooth Habits” and “When Children Grind Their Teeth.”
It's hard to feel confident if you're embarrassed about the way your teeth look. Whether the imperfection is large or small, cosmetic dentistry treatments can help you feel proud of your smile. Dr. Brad McConnel and Dr. Brooks Stevens, your Fort Worth, TX cosmetic dentists at Harris Parkway Dental, describe several cosmetic dentistry services that will improve your smile.
Crowns and bridges
Crowns are a good choice if you have a damaged, discolored, fragile or unusually shaped tooth. Crowns slip over teeth, completely encasing them from the gum line up. Crowns are made with a variety of materials, including porcelain, porcelain-fused-to-metal, resin, ceramic and metal alloys.
Bridges are used to replace missing teeth and consist of one or more false teeth anchored by crowns on either side. They are constructed of porcelain or porcelain-fused-to-metal.
Teeth whitening is an excellent option if your teeth are dull or yellow. Professional teeth whitening offers more impressive, long-lasting results than home whitening kits. When your Fort Worth dentist whitens your teeth, you can expect to see a three- to eight-shade difference that can last several years if you avoid foods and beverages that stain teeth.
When teeth whitening doesn't get your teeth quite as white as you would like, porcelain veneers are the perfect solution. These thin shells fit over the front surfaces of your teeth and can be used on one tooth or all of them. In addition to whitening teeth, veneers are also used to hide chips, discolorations, oddly shaped teeth, worn teeth and small gaps.
Putty-like composite bonding strengthens and repairs damaged teeth. It can be easily manipulated to any shape, making it the ideal material to correct small defects in your teeth. After the bonding is applied to your teeth, your dentist uses a curing light to harden it.
Dental implants provide a long-lasting tooth replacement option. The titanium implant is placed in a small hole in your jaw, where it bonds to surrounding bone. When the process is complete several months later, a crown is attached to the implant with a special connector called an abutment.
Inlays and Onlays
Traditional fillings don't work when a significant area of your tooth is damaged. Inlays and onlays fill and protect the tooth. Inlays fit inside the cusps of your teeth, while onlays extend beyond the cusps.
Think cosmetic dentistry treatments might just be the perfect solution to your cosmetic issue? Call (817) 423-2223 to contact your Fort Worth, TX cosmetic dentists at Harris Parkway Dental and make an appointment. Improve your self-confidence and your smile!
While cigarette smoking has been linked with lung cancer and heart disease, it, can also contribute to dental disease. You can reduce these risks by doing one thing — quitting smoking.
But that’s easier said than done: forty-six percent of smokers try to quit every year, but only one in ten are successful long term. The difficulty is tied to tobacco’s active ingredient, nicotine, an addictive substance that triggers chemical and behavioral dependence. Nicotine “re-wires” the brain to feel pleasure when it encounters the chemical, and to feel bad when it’s deprived. Social, occupational or recreational activities can further reinforce the habit.
Many smokers try to quit through sheer willpower or “cold turkey.” Because of nicotine’s addictive properties, this rarely works — instead, you need a comprehensive strategy tailored to you.
You should begin first with trying to understand your individual smoking patterns: when do you smoke, how frequently, or during what activities? To help with this you can use a “wrap sheet”, a piece of paper you keep wrapped around your cigarette pack. Each time you take out a cigarette, you would record how you feel on the sheet. This also slows down the action of taking out a cigarette and lighting it, which can help you become less mechanical and more mindful of your habit.
You can also break your dependence by gradually introducing restrictions to your smoking: smoke only in certain locations or at certain times; substitute other stress-relieving activities like a walk or other physical exercise; or gradually reduce the number of cigarettes you smoke. You can do the latter by setting a goal, say to smoke 20% fewer cigarettes each successive week; this will force you to increasingly make choices about when you smoke.
Finally, don’t try to go it alone. You can benefit greatly from professionals, including your dentist, to help you kick the habit through Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NTR) with prescription medication, counseling or smoking cessation support groups.
Quitting smoking isn’t so much stopping a behavior as it is “unlearning” one and establishing new, healthier ones. The first step, though, is accepting you need a change, one that will benefit your whole life.
If you would like more information on quitting smoking, 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 “Strategies to Stop Smoking.”