Can a Loose Tooth be Saved?

If you find yourself with a loose tooth, you may panic. However, a loose tooth does not mean it cannot be saved. In fact, modern dentistry has many techniques to solve the problem of a loose tooth. But to have the best chance of success, it is imperative you do several things, one of which is to see a dentist as soon as possible.

What Causes Loose Teeth?

When you have a loose tooth, it is probably due to one of several reasons. While your tooth could have been loosened if you got hit in the mouth while playing contact sports or if you fell down, it may also have gotten loose due to gum disease or bruxism, a fancy term for grinding your teeth. But no matter the reason, prompt treatment almost always results in success.

Leave it Alone

While it may be tough to avoid using your tongue or finger to poke at your loose tooth, muster up all the willpower you can to do so. If you don’t, the constant poking and prodding will loosen the tooth even more or even make it fall out of its socket.

Keep it Clean

Since you don’t want an infection to form around your loose tooth, gently rinse your mouth with room-temperature water to remove food particles.

Tooth Splinting

As for how a loose tooth can be saved, most dentists use the technique known as tooth splinting. When this is done, a dental crown is attached to the loose tooth and its surrounding teeth, creating a “splint” that holds them together.

Periodontal Treatment

If gum disease is the reason for your loose tooth, your dentist may need to perform certain types of periodontal treatment. The most common are scaling and root planing, which will remove plaque and tartar.

Dental Implants

In very severe cases or where treatment was significantly delayed, a loose tooth may be pulled and replaced with a dental implant. Though the original tooth will not be saved, the dental implant will look, feel, and perform just like a regular tooth.

Should you discover one of your teeth is loose, don’t just sit around and poke at it with your tongue. Instead, contact your dentist as quickly as possible to schedule an appointment.

 

dentist with patient

Everything You Should Know About Dark Spots Around Your Gumline

While doing your usual routine with a toothbrush and floss, you spot an area around your gumline that looks darker than what it should be. Dark spots around your gum line can be a good reason to talk to your dentist, especially if those spots remain after you brush. Here is a look at what you should know about dark spots around your gumline.

You could have problems with gum disease.

If the darkened colors you see are specifically your gums, there can be a list of problems taking place, but most of them are going to be related to some form of gum disease. Gingivitis is a telltale cause of darkened gum tissue, for example, because it can have an effect on blood flow to the gums. Smoking or infection or two causes of darkened gums that may or may not be related to gum disease.

You have to watch for decay at the gumline.

Decay that starts at the gumline is actually a really common thing, especially around the bases of teeth that don’t get the most attention while you brush. For example, the backside of your front teeth or the molars in the back can develop gumline decay. Decay commonly starts out as small darkened areas on your teeth, and this can happen right where the gums attach to the teeth because these spots are missed while brushing.

You should see your dentist right away.

Regardless of what it is, that is causing dark spots around your gumline, it is imperative that you speak to a dentist right away. These small issues can grow into something more worrisome. Even though this is not a dental emergency, it is something that your dentist should see, diagnose, and treat.

Contact Us for a Dental Checkup in Beaumont, TX

Any time you spot something odd around your gumline that can’t be removed with regular brushing and flossing, it is best if you talk to your dentist. Something that looks minor could be something more concerning. If you would like to see a dentist for a checkup, reach out to us at Southern Oaks Dental Care in Beaumont, TX to schedule an appointment.

4 Tips to Combat Dental Anxiety

Dental anxiety affects hundreds of thousands of Americans. There are many reasons why people might have dental anxiety. They may have fear of the unknown, fear of the motorized dental tools or simply be afraid of getting bad news from the dentists. Whatever the reason for your dental anxiety, it’s not healthy to let this anxiety prevent you from going to the dentist. Here are some ways to combat dental anxiety.

1. Talk to Friends and Family

People don’t often discuss their dental visits. Naturally, it’s not a topic that is very interesting at a dinner party. But talking to your friends and family about their own dental treatment experiences can help you feel less anxious about going to the dentist. You’ll hear firsthand what they had done, what it was like, and the outcome. This will probably make you feel more confident going into your next dentist appointment.

2. Go More Often

Another way to combat dental anxiety that is derived from a fear of the unknown is simply to go more often. For three months, visit your dentist once a month. Just go in for simple reasons, like a routine examination, a teeth whitening or to get dental sealants. The more you visit your dentist and get to know the staff and the office environment, the more comfortable you’ll start to feel about dental visits in general.

3. Try Some Remedies

If you feel that you need to relax before your dental visit, try some remedies that others have used. You can try meditating, having a glass of wine, or even try CBD, which is gaining in popularity. Of course, if you don’t feel good about having a glass of wine or trying CBD, you should choose an alternative relaxation remedy that aligns with your values and lifestyle.

4. Ask For Sedation Dentistry

You can always be upfront and honest with your dentist about your anxieties. Your dentist may offer you sedation dentistry. This is a calming agent that in no way impairs your ability to make decisions or be aware of your surroundings. It’s just a very mild relaxant that can help you combat dental anxiety.

Remember, it’s better to seek ways to combat dental anxiety than to avoid seeing the dentist at all. For more ideas about getting over dental anxiety, please contact us.

woman with toothbrush

Tooth Enamel Loss

Everyday activities such as eating and drinking cause some degree of tooth enamel erosion at some point in nearly everyone’s lifetime. However, because tooth enamel is not comprised of living tissue, it doesn’t have the regenerative powers of certain other bodily elements such as skin — once your enamel is gone, it’s gone. Fortunately, strategies exist designed to help minimize tooth enamel erosion. They are:

Brushing with fluoride toothpaste and flossing regularly
Avoiding hard candy
Reducing sugary beverages
Drinking beverages through a straw to reduce exposure to tooth surfaces
Visiting your dentist for checkups and cleanings twice per year
Other causes of tooth enamel degradation include eating too many acidic foods, grinding your teeth at night, having dry mouth due to health conditions or specific medication side effects, and having acid reflux.

Signs of Tooth Enamel Loss

Those whose teeth experience higher than average sensitivity to hot and cold temperature extremes probably have developed a degree of tooth enamel loss. Other signs are teeth that have significantly yellowed or have otherwise become discolored, teeth that easily chip or fracture, and teeth that have a slightly translucent appearance. You may also notice rough edges and shiny spots on teeth that have lost some of their enamel.

Tooth enamel loss causes the internal tissues of the teeth to become vulnerable to damage by plaque and bacteria. Your dentist may recommend specific dental care products, such as enamel-protective toothpaste, to minimize this damage. These often work by neutralizing the bacteria and plaque present in the mouth to minimize the amount of damage they can do. Antibacterial mouthwashes also may be recommended.

woman with toothbrush

Dental Procedures That Can Help

Although the best defense against the erosion of tooth enamel is to practice good oral hygiene regularly to help reduce the chances of it happening in the first place, there are measures your dentist can take if tooth enamel erosion is severe enough so that it interferes with the patient’s quality of life. Bonding, a process in which a material called resin in applied over damaged or stained teeth, is among the most popular. For teeth that have experienced significant enamel loss, the dentist may recommend using veneers or crowns. All of these choices help prevent further damage by providing a barrier between the teeth and outside substances.

Please don’t hesitate to call us if you have questions or concerns regarding enamel loss or other dental health issues.

Causes of Tooth Pain

Causes of Tooth PainIn most cases, tooth pain is caused by a problem with your teeth or your jaw, and the pain can go from a nagging, annoying pain to so excruciating it’s debilitating. Whenever you have tooth pain, it’s always a good idea to be checked out by your dentist. Wondering what could be causing that pain? Here are a few of the most common causes of tooth pain.

Cause #1 – A Cavity

A cavity is a hole in your tooth that goes through the enamel and dentin, and it’s caused by tooth decay. Cavities are very common and often the source of tooth pain.

Cause #2– Abscess

Sometimes tooth decay can be so severe that it causes an infection of the pulp and nerve inside of your tooth. This is known as an abscess, and it can cause very severe tooth pain as well as swelling around the affected tooth.

Cause #3 – Damage to the Tooth

Damage to a tooth can result in pain. A trauma that results in a broken or fractured tooth may leave you hurting. Tooth trauma should always be treated as quickly as possible to prevent further dental problems.

Cause #4 – Loose Filling

If you have a sharp pain when you bite down on food, you could have a loose filling. A loose filling has the potential to cause a toothache and leave you uncomfortable, particularly when you’re eating.

Cause #5 – Gum Disease

While gum disease causes swelling and redness of the gums, this may result in both gum and tooth pain as well.

In some cases, non-dental problems can result in tooth pain as well, such as:

  • Cluster headaches
  • Sinus infections
  • Diabetes
  • Nerve diseases
  • Certain viral infections
  • Drug abuse

There’s a lot you can do to prevent dental pain — brushing, flossing, eating right, and keeping up with routine dental visits. However, tooth pain can happen to anyone. If you’re experiencing pain in a tooth, contact us today for an appointment.