Posts for: February, 2019
A toothache means you have tooth decay, right? Not necessarily — your pain could be signaling a number of potential causes. Determining where, how much and how often it hurts will help us find out the cause and apply the appropriate treatment.
A single symptom, for example, can mean many things. A twinge of tooth pain as you consume hot or cold foods might indicate localized tooth decay easily repaired by a filling. But it could also mean the tooth's root surface has been exposed as a result of periodontal (gum) disease — aggressive plaque removal and maybe even gum surgery might be necessary. Or it could be a sign of inner pulp decay: in this case you'll likely need a root canal treatment to save the tooth.
Pulp decay can also announce itself with a very sharp and constant pain radiating from one or more teeth. You shouldn't hesitate to see us for an examination — even if the pain goes away. Pain cessation most likely means the nerves in the pulp have died. The infection, however, still exists, so you'll still probably need a root canal treatment.
If you notice severe, continuous pain and pressure around a tooth, particularly about the gums, you may have a localized, inflamed area of infection called an abscess. An abscess can be the result of gum disease, but it might also stem from a foreign body like a popcorn husk, getting stuck below the gums. We'll need to conduct a complete dental examination to determine the cause and how to treat it.
Finally, a sharp pain when you bite down could mean many things such as a loose filling or a fractured (cracked) tooth. The latter especially requires immediate attention to save the tooth.
These are just a few of the possible causes behind mouth or facial pain. Although all of them are serious, a few are true dental emergencies and can't wait if we're going to save a tooth. The sooner you see us, the sooner we can help relieve the pain, minimize any damage and avert disaster.
If you would like more information on treating tooth pain, 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 “Tooth Pain? Don't Wait!”
How a teeth whitening treatment from your dentist in Mount Pleasant, SC, can give you a great smile
If you want to rejuvenate your smile, a professional teeth whitening treatment is the choice to make. You can achieve a beautiful, bright white smile that will make a great impression. Your smile is your trademark, so make your smile stand out. Dr. Cynthia Garner at Garner Family Dentistry in Mount Pleasant, SC, can help rejuvenate your smile.
There are many lifestyle habits like smoking and drinking coffee that can make your smile dull and dingy. Aging is also a big reason why your smile might not be as white as when you were younger. As you age, your enamel becomes thinner so you see through to the layer underneath, called dentin. Dentin is yellow, and gets even darker with age. That’s why your smile isn’t as white as it could be.
You can reverse the effects of tobacco and coffee. You can also take back what the years have done to your smile. Professional teeth whitening brightens and whitens your smile and offers many benefits.
Did you know…
- You can whiten your smile up to 8 shades whiter
- Your whitening results can last up to 5 years
- Treatment is quick, often taking only about an hour
- Professional whitening has been rigorously tested for safety and effectiveness
When you choose professional teeth whitening from Dr. Garner, you can expect excellent results quickly and safely. Over-the-counter whitening treatments don’t offer the same safety or effectiveness. In fact, some over-the-counter products contain chemicals and abrasives that can make your teeth more sensitive.
Your professional teeth whitening treatment begins with prescription-strength whitening gel placed on your teeth. The gel is activated using a high-tech ultraviolet light. You can achieve excellent results in about an hour. For those that prefer home whiting kits, Dr. Garner also provides tooth whitening kits with prescription strength whiteners. Professional teeth whitening is a great choice if you have a special event coming up, or you just want a great-looking smile!
If you want to rejuvenate your smile, choose professional teeth whitening! Just pick up your phone and call Dr. Cynthia Garner at Garner Family Dentistry in Mount Pleasant, SC, today!
The Golden Globes ceremony is a night when Hollywood stars shine their brightest. At the recent red-carpet event, leading man Viggo Mortensen had plenty to smile about: Green Book, the movie in which he co-starred, picked up the award for Best Motion Picture—Musical or Comedy. But fans looking at the veteran actor's big smile today might not realize that it once looked very different. A few years ago, an accident during the filming of The Two Towers took a major chip out of Mortensen's front tooth!
That might be OK for some movies (think The Hangover or Dumb and Dumber)—but it's not so great for everyday life. Fortunately, Mortensen visited a dentist promptly, and now his smile is picture-perfect. How was that accomplished? He didn't say…but generally, the best treatment for a chipped tooth depends on how much of the tooth's structure is missing.
If the tooth has only a small chip or crack, it's often possible to restore it via cosmetic bonding. This procedure can be done right in the dental office, frequently in a single visit. Here's how it works: First the tooth is cleaned and prepared, and then a tooth-colored resin is applied to the area being restored. After it is cured (hardened) with a special light, additional layers may be applied to build up the missing structure. When properly cared for, a tooth restored this way can look good for several years.
For a longer-lasting restoration, veneers may be recommended. These are wafer-thin shells made of durable material (most often porcelain) that cover the front (visible) surfaces of teeth. Strong and lifelike, veneers can match the exact color of your natural teeth—or give you the bright, high-wattage smile you've always wanted. No wonder they're so popular in Hollywood! Because veneers are custom-made for you, getting them may require several office visits.
If a chip or crack extends to the inner pulp of the tooth, a root canal procedure will be needed to keep the tooth from becoming infected—a situation that could have serious consequences. But you shouldn't fear a root canal! The procedure generally causes no more discomfort than filling a cavity (though it takes a little longer), and it can help save teeth that would otherwise be lost. After a root canal, a crown (cap) is generally needed to restore the visible part of the tooth.
When a damaged tooth can't be restored, it needs to be extracted (removed) and replaced. Today's best option for tooth replacement is a dental implant—a small, screw-shaped post inserted into the bone of your jaw that anchors a lifelike, fully functional crown. Implants require very little special care and can look great for many years, making them a top choice for tooth replacement
If you have questions about chipped or damaged teeth, please contact our office or schedule a consultation. You can read more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Artistic Repair Of Front Teeth With Composite Resin” and “Porcelain Veneers.”