Dental Implants

Depending on the state of your oral health, a dental implant may be the best option to safely replace your tooth. A Dental implant works by placing an artificial root into your jaw which will hold a replacement tooth.

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Sleep Dentistry

If you suffer from dental induced anxiety or stress, sleep dentistry could help. Administering anaesthetic to a patient prior to any dental work being completed allows for a stress free and efficient visit.

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Root Canal Therapy

Dentists often recommend root canal therapy in an effort to save a tooth. This is an extremely common procedure that can be performed by most general dentists as well as endodentist specialists.

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Here is What You Must Know About Urgent Dental Treatment

There are many people who go to the dentist for just about any kind of issue. Sometimes, a slight toothache will send people directly to the dentist’s office. However, not every dental issue requires emergency treatment. We have put together the following article to provide you with some tips about the right kind of treatment for you.

When to Get Emergency Dental Treatment

Accidents

Fractured Jaw, Urgent Dental CareOne of the main reasons to go to urgent dental care would be accidents. If you have been involved in a major accident that might have caused a fractured jaw, or are experiencing excessive blood loss, it would be recommended that you get yourself to urgent dental care. This is very important, even if you have had attention from paramedics as they can only provide temporary relief. A dental specialist will be better equipped to handle any dental issue you may have had. 

A Broken Tooth

Another reason to get immediate dental treatment would be in the case of a broken tooth. A recent report filed by a leading dental practice found that this was one of the main reasons patients sought treatment for. An example of an extreme case is that of a man in his 40s who lost a tooth because he did not follow good dental hygiene. He did not brush his teeth twice a day, as dentists recommend, nor did he change his toothbrush regularly. Unfortunately, over time his teeth became weak and he lost one of his teeth at a restaurant as he tried to chew a bone. Of course, this could have all been prevented had he paid regular visits to his dentist.

When You Need Fast Attention

If you feel that you need urgent dental attention, it can be a good time to seek immediate access to a professional. There are various reasons why people use this service. One of them is time. As most conventional dentists don’t offer 24-hour dental service and have long waiting times, they are not always available to attend to emergency situations. That way if there are any serious complications or infections, they can help by providing fast and efficient treatment.

Urgent Dental Care for ChildrenFurthermore, if you have children then you might want to explore urgent care options. Children, unlike adults, are not able to fully express themselves, thus making it hard for the parents to understand they kind of treatment they need. However, nowadays there are multiple dentists that handle children care in their practices. A little bit of research of the different types of dentists will help in deciding which dentist is best for you and your family.

Urgent dental care can also be recommended for people that do not have access to insurance or lack the funds to pay for a conventional dentist. In some cases, complications will develop if the patient does not get the help they need right away. In some states in the US, there are practices that provide dental services for those in need. If you or someone you know are in a situation like this, talk to your dentist to see if they provide any sort of financial assistant. Most of them will have a system in place as a way to give back to society.

Despite all this information, there are people that will disagree with the types of dental issues classified as urgent dental care. As a rule of thumb, anything that puts a patient’s health in jeopardy will require urgent care. Always seek the right treatment for any dental problem you may have.

How to Select the Right Dentist for You and Your Loved Ones

A lot of people seem to find it hard to select a dentist as the options out there are endless. Dynamic marketing campaigns and multiple dental services are just a few ways in which some dentists try to woo their clients. However, we have compiled a list of the top 5 things to look for when choosing a dentist.

5 Things to Consider When Choosing a Dentist

Research

Research Dental OptionsFirst, do some research on your own. Highlight the services that appeal to you and look for dentists that provide them. Another good idea is to find locations within your vicinity and checking them out. Introduce yourself to the staff and let them know you are in the market for a dentist. This will allow yourself to get a feeling of the clinic and whether it’s the right one for you.

Budget

The second thing to keep in mind, is budget. How much are you willing to spend on dental services? Posing yourself this question during your research will allow you to weed out the clinics that are out of your budget and focus on cheaper alternatives. As the common saying goes, health is wealth. And there is no reason why paying for your health should drain the bank.

Length of Practice

Experienced DentistAnother important factor is length of practice. There are many dentists out there that have just gotten started and therefore have minimal experience. Decide then, based on the type of service you require, if you would like a dentist with more years of experience. Something else you can look at, are the reviews the dentist has received. Read up on the experiences other patients have had so that you can feel comfortable with your decision making.

Referral

As with any other service, referrals are always helpful. Ask your friends and families as most of them have had to rely on dental services at some point in their lives. They will be able to guide you in the right direction in choosing a skilled professional.

Gut Feel

Lastly, follow your gut. If after your visit, your gut tells you that it may not be the right choice, trust it. It may be a place that seems to have it all, the staff, location and price. But sometimes, there are things that go unseen and only you can figure that out. The final goal of this is for you to find a dental clinic you are safe and comfortable with.

Looking for a dental practice might require a lot of patience, focus and discipline. Feel free to use the tips provided to help your search. There is also a guide provided by the National Dental Association that you can read to get some additional information.

24-Hour Dentistry: A Closer Look

Nowadays, people are becoming more health-conscious than ever before. Which is why a lot of dental practices have decided to extend their hours and provide services around the clock. With special focus on emergency-style practices, patients have the freedom to attend to their needs at their convenience. In the following paragraphs, we will look at why this industry has grown exponentially over the past few years.

Extended Dental HoursExtended Service Hours for Dental Offices

One of the main reasons emergency dental practices have seen success is time. Most people have busy schedules and do not have the time necessary to see a dentist during regular hours. Especially when most dental offices tend to have long waiting times and not enough staff. Which is why dental offices that offer longer hours are sought after by people who want efficient dental care for themselves and their family.

Another reason this industry has grown and expanded is the great number of dentists dedicating themselves to the emergency industry. Back in the past people used to believe that emergency dentists where the ones that did not find success in conventional dentistry. However, this is a myth that has been debunked as most dentists in this field not only find success but can generate a higher income for themselves. This is due to their open availability.

Accessibility = Higher Price Tag

Dental CostIt is important to note that with accessibility comes a higher price tag. As these dental services become more available, people are starting to see an increase in dental fees. However, the benefit of convenience makes it worth the extra money. In fact, most of these dental practices have started engaging with their patients through their social media. This new channel allows the dentists to communicate any tips and ideas they might have. Thus, creating a closer bond with their patients and other dentists.

The National Dentist Association has welcomed this new branch of dentistry under their new regulations. They ensure that each organization abides by the rules- one example of this is seen in the regulation of substances administered to patients.

In conclusion, this industry will continue to see growth as more people become informed about their services. With better accessibility and efficacy, the services provided in emergency care make for yet another great step in the evolution of dentistry.

Selecting the Right Dental Anesthetic

There are numerous studies that have been carried out to ascertain the level of genotoxicity in 14 different chemicals used by dentists. The findings allowed people to learn about the components of these chemicals. A group of dentists stated that it is common to find several dental practices, including sleep dentistry, using these chemical agents.

To keep things simple and not get into complex chemical formations, we will be looking at some basic facts. The chemicals that are most commonly used in dental procedures are local anesthetics, general anesthesia and sedation drugs. Provided with this information, patients will be able to educate themselves as well as their loved ones with the purpose of allowing them to make more informed decisions.

Different Types of Anesthetic

Lidocaine

Lidocaine AnestheticOne of the most commonly used anesthetics today is called lidocaine (a modern replacement for procaine). This chemical can stay in the body for up to two hours and numb the pain felt during that time. Other chemicals used are articaine, bupivacaine and mepivacaine. By using any one of these chemicals, the patient remains calm during the procedure, thus allowing the dentist to operate without worrying about hurting them.

Nerve Block

Another common anesthetic is the nerve block. This is used to block the pain in the part of the mouth where the procedure will take place. Due to effectiveness and accessibility of this chemical agent, most dentists will use it with patients. However, it is important to note that there is ongoing research still being conducted to prove its safety.

Infiltration

Nerve Block DentistryLastly, there is the method of infiltration. This is a system where the chemical is applied to the root of the tooth before treatment is carried out. This method is rather effective in the treatment of minor procedures. Along with articaine, infiltration can be used for tooth extractions, implant replacements and grafting. It can also be used for periodontal surgeries.

It is crucial for the patient, knowing these basic facts that they still provide the dentist with as much medical information as possible during the first consultation. This way, the dentist can work with the patient in finding the right anesthetic for them, thus eliminating the potential for complications. It is also stressed that with like any other chemicals, patients do not self-medicate. No matter how much information they are provided this is to ensure their safety and well-being.

Teeth Whitening: DIY or At The Dentist?

Teeth whitening

With a new year approaching, what’s the best way to reinvent your image to inspire more confidence? The answer for many people is teeth whitening. If you are ready for a brighter smile but are confused with the many available options: DIY trays, paste, and strips; professional dentist take-home kits or in-clinic procedures – then you are not alone.

Never fear; by the time you are finished with this, you will be able to make an informed decision. Let’s look at the positives and negatives of each option and help you make the right choice.

For starters, over-the-counter (OTC) teeth whitening kits, as well as treatments done by your dentist both have their own pros and cons. To achieve the best possible outcome, it’s crucial that any patient knows what to expect.

Regardless of which teeth whitening method a patient chooses, it’s important to have a professional cleaning done by your dentist to ensure optimal results. Any plaque or left over adhesive from previous orthodontic work won’t whiten. If this isn’t cleaned and removed beforehand, the final product will be imperfect and blotchy, and very different than the perfect smile you likely envisioned. Teeth whitening Melbourne wide has become much more accessible with many more dentists now offering the service. So let’s dive in and see if it is worth the extra cost, or will the DIY option suffice.



DIY/Over-the-Counter Whitening Kits

There are many DIY teeth whitening kits from companies like Crest and Listerine, and they can offer a level of whitening for a much lower cost than a proper dentist treatment. DIY kits range from $15 to $100.

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Positives: Because of the lower cost, over-the-counter kits are perfect for those who don’t want to have to wait for an appointment to whiten their teeth, and for those who can’t afford professional teeth whitening.
  • Negatives: The downside is that, although it isn’t rocket science, many patients use DIY kits incorrectly. The included bleaching solution should not come into contact with your gums, and doing so can lead to dental sensitivity from gum recession.
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Advice: OTC kits should only be used in an emergency, or when there is extreme discoloration. They are a good idea if you just need a boost in advance of a major event of some sort, but for long-lasting results, see a dentist. Some patients also tend to get hooked on these kits and end up overusing them.



Professional Teeth Whitening

Professional treatments can be done at the dental clinic and offer quick results, or you could choose completely supervised take-home treatments. The home versions are far cheaper and can provide the same results that your dentist could give you, yet at a slower pace. Prices can run from $400 to $1,000 or more.

shades of teeth whitening

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Positives: You will get longer lasting and improved results over the OTC kits. The FDA has approved amorphous calcium and phosphate (ACP) for desensitizing, and most professional products from your dentist use it to give you a healthier smile safely. Professional whiteners will lighten the teeth by seven shades or more in most cases. At-home treatments will have a completely customized tray that guarantees the effectiveness of the bleaching agent.
  • Negatives: The exorbitant price tag. Professional teeth whitening at your dental clinic will provide the best results, but also comes with the highest price tag.
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Advice: Be careful of which professional you choose for your whitening treatment. Many will claim to offer a “professional grade” service, yet it may not be regulated and will leave you dissatisfied and broke.

Home Teeth Whitening Tips



1. Brushing


Regular brushing 2 times a day will help reduce stain and prevent cavities. Using whitening toothpaste will boost the color of each tooth.

2. Mouth Wash

Using mouthwash will reduce the possibility of staining. Rinsing with a whitening mouthwash will remove tiny particles missed with brushing and help keep gums healthy.

3. Flossing

Flossing sticks are convenient to carry with you to remove food particles after eating. Flossing regularly will reduce the risk of cavities, removing plaque and food residue.

Eating apple to whiten teeth

4. Fruit

Eating an apple a day will keep both the doctor and dentist at bay. Apples will help to bleach teeth and remove particles of food between teeth. Strawberries contain an acid which will whiten teeth if used as toothpaste. Mash up the fruit and place on toothbrush similar to using regular toothpaste. Rinse immediately after as the acid will continue to bleach the teeth and can damage the enamel.

5. Baking Soda

This home teeth whitening remedy has been popular for decades. Mix with water or used directly on toothbrush as toothpaste. Results will be noticable almost immediately.

6. Avoid Certain Foods and Drink
Blueberries, blackberries, and red wine have concentrated color and will stain teeth. Red wine and berries contain antioxidants which help reduce the signs of aging, brushing teeth after consuming these products will reduce the risk of staining. Coffee, tea and smoking can also stain teeth.

7. Avoid Fizzy Drinks

Fizzy drinks will cause teeth to discolor and stain. Over time fizzy drinks cause decay and make the staining difficult to remove.

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The Correct Way to Brush Your Teeth

a lady brushing her teethAlthough most people know brushing their teeth is important, many simply do not know the correct way to do it. It is integral to learn the correct way in which to brush your teeth to avoid plaque, gum disease and excessive trips to the dentist that can easily be avoided.

First of all, you should dampen your toothbrush with water before adding toothpaste to it. Once you have your toothbrush damp, turn off the water faucet. While it is important to brush your teeth properly, it is also important to be conservative when doing so. Apply toothpaste to your toothbrush but only a small pea-sized amount. There is no need to cover your entire toothbrush with toothpaste. Do not copy the advertisements on television, they are just trying to condition you to use more toothpaste then necessary to make more sales. There is absolutely no benefit gained from using extra toothpaste.

The time you spent brushing your teeth should be 2-3 minutes. As you brush try to hold your brush at a 45-degree angle against your gum line. Brush gently, cleaning both the inside and outside surfaces of your teeth. The brush needs to be held vertically while you clean the inside surfaces of your top and bottom front teeth. Remember that your tooth enamel is fairly thin and brushing too hard over a period of time can result in damaged tooth enamel. If you have a tendency to brush too hard, purchase a brush with softer bristles to compensate.

toothbrushes hanging on the wall

Always place your brush somewhere to dry after use to avoid mould buildup

The brushing procedure is actually the same whether you are using a traditional toothbrush or an electric one. You need to bear in mind that it is important to brush each tooth individually. First, begin by brushing the front teeth, then move on to the back teeth. Brush each tooth thoroughly, including the backs and edges of each. Once you have finished brushing your teeth, you should always gently brush your gums.

Finally, brush your tongue. This helps to alleviate any bacteria within the mouth and also maintain a fresher breath. Once you have finished brushing all teeth, your gums and your tongue, rinse your mouth with clear, cool water. Be sure to also rinse your toothbrush thoroughly, before putting it somewhere to dry. Some people choose to cover their toothbrush to preventing the buildup of airborne bacteria, including microscopic particles from the toilet. This should only be done once the toothbrush is dry however, as a covered, wet brush can become a haven for mould to grow. Be sure to re-cap the toothpaste and put it away as well.

Always floss after brushing teeth, or prior to brushing if you prefer. This will ensure that you have removed all food particles from between your teeth. You can also use a mouthwash to ensure your teeth and gums remain healthy. Do not use mouthwash that contains alcohol as these have been found to cause oral cancers.

Finally, visit your dentist at least two times a year for professional cleaning and for preventative maintenance against any potential dental problems.

Why Do You Need to Floss Your Teeth?

Let’s start with the basics. Firstly, what exactly is dental floss?

Dental floss is a string like product you should use on a daily basis to remove bacteria build-up and food from in-between your teeth. Floss, which is usually made out of nylon or plastic, is a thin string/thread that you place between your teeth and pull back and forth in order to clean the gaps. As you pull on the thread, debris and food will come loose and then it can easily be removed.

dental flossWhat are the benefits of dental flossing?

Flossing daily removes much of the debris and plaque that mere brushing does not. When you floss your teeth each day, you reduce the risk of developing gum problems and you increase the chances of keeping your teeth for a lifetime by a significant margin.

Flossing also helps you to eliminate bad breath. Dental plaque is one of the major causes of halitosis (bad breath), and if the plaque is not removed, it can generate unpleasant smell from your mouth. This odor results from the metabolism of the bacteria contained in plaque. Bad breath can also be a result of tooth and gum decay, which are also caused by a buildup of plaque.

Regular flossing helps to prevent tooth decay. Dental plaque leads to cavities if it’s left to accumulate between teeth over a period of time. The bacteria that is found in plaque mixed with sugar can begin the process of tooth decay. It is a known fact that brushing alone does not perfectly clean in between teeth and dental floss is necessary to reach those areas and removes the plaque.

Jenny flossing her teethRegular flossing can also help prevent gum diseases. Inflammation of gums commonly known as gingivitis is the initial stage of periodontal disease (gum disease). It is primarily caused by an accumulation of plaque between teeth and around gums. This plaque also contains bacteria that is harmful to the gums. Therefore, flossing is important to remove all plaque that accumulates throughout the day.

An increasing body of evidence shows that not only does flossing keep your smile and your breath fresh, but it also can help prevent much more serious diseases. An increasing body of knowledge has shown diseases such as periodontal disease can result in life-threatening illnesses such as diabetes, heart disease, and respiratory illness. As such for you to reduces your chances of developing one of these more serious diseases, ensure you maintain good dental health by flossing on a regular basis.

The benefits of flossing are almost endless, and anyone who isn’t flossing is taking a big risk with their long term health. Dental health professionals recommend that your floss your teeth at least twice daily. Have you flossed today? If not it’s probably about time you did!

Top 5 Foods/Drinks that Cause Cavities

Food is a vital for survival. However eating has, for the most part, a negative effect on dental health. Among the foods that cause the biggest problems with oral hygiene are processed sugars, acidic food, alcohol, starchy foods and citrus fruits. These are known to wear away the protective coating on teeth and form cavities. A cavity is simply a hole in any given tooth. These are formed when food remains, acid and bacteria in the mouth combine to form a plaque. This plaque acts a haven for bacteria which attack the enamel, eventually resulting in cavities.

how cavities form

The progression of the formation of cavities in a tooth.

Here is a list of foods and drinks to avoid, to keep your teeth looking their best for longer:

Process Sugar

Process sugar foods are consumed on a regular basis by most people around the world. Manufacturers of fast foods and snacks commonly add processed sugar into their products. Sugar that gets left behind in the mouth combine forces with bacteria to form plaque. This plaque settles on the enamel and slowly eats away at it. The plaque’s acid works on the enamel and over time can cause cavities. Common foods and drinks which are high in processed sugar and should be avoided include: candy, soda, processed juice drinks, yoghurt, cakes, jam, sauce and many more. Beware of food with hidden sugar as these will not only discreetly affect our oral health, but also your general well-being.

no sodaAcidic Foods

There are a wide range of foods that are highly acidic. Sodas are one of these, due to carbonated acids, and as mentioned above also contain a high sugar content so should definitely be avoided. There are many other foods that may surprise you as containing acids. Among these foods are fish, bread, and even some fruits. The damage from these foods and drinks is fast as the acid starts acting on the enamel immediately after consumption. In an effort to combat this, drink a lot of water or eat a good mix of alkaline foods to neutralize the PH of the acidic foods.

Alcohol

Alcohol causes cavities. While many of us may not want to believe it, the writing is on the wall. Not only does alcohol usually contain high levels of sugar, it also dehydrates the mouth which makes it less effective in washing and preventing food particles from sticking to your teeth. When the mouth is dry, food particles cannot be flushed away. To curb this, it is advisable to drink water in between your alcoholic drinks. You can also use a mouthwash to kill bacteria in the mouth. We recommend using a natural mouthwash made from sodium bicarbonate or diluted clove oil.

bread and pasta

Starchy foods can cause a buildup of plaque on the teeth.

Starchy food

As you may know, food digestion starts in the mouth through the  breaking down of starch. The starch is broken down into sugar. Once the sugar gets trapped between teeth, it invites the bacteria and the process of creating a plaque begins. It is from this plaque that the acid and germs act on the enamel. The action leads to erosion of the enamel and the formation of holes known as cavities. Common foods that contain starch include baked potatoes, rice, cakes, pasta, French fries and doughnuts.

Citrus

Citrus is found in some common fruits like oranges, lemons, blueberries, limes, raspberries, mandarin, and grapefruit. Some juices and other foods are made from these fruits as well. It is the acidity in these fruits that can cause erosion of tooth enamel, so always wash down your citrus fruit intake with some water or combine them with other foods to reduce the acidic effect on your teeth.

Now that you know the main culprits of tooth erosion, be sure to take steps to protect your dental health. Always keep yourself well hydrated by drinking lot of water and brushing your teeth any meals that contain cavity causing ingredients. Better yet, cut out the above mentioned foods and drinks from your diet as much as possible, and save yourself a few trips to the dentist in the long run!

White Spots On Your Teeth? You Have Dental Fluorosis

Noticing white streaks on your teeth can be disturbing because of the way they make your teeth look. These white streaks are a result of a condition called dental fluorosis. Fortunately, this condition is not something that is hazardous for your teeth. If the appearance of your teeth bothers you, visit a dentist to find out how you can get rid of it.

What Causes Dental Fluorosis?

Dental fluorosis is a condition that directly correlates to an over-consumption of fluoride. Here are several facts about dental fluorosis:

It only develops on teeth when they are inside the gums. If a person consumes too much fluoride before his or her permanent teeth are through the gums, dental fluorosis can occur. It cannot occur after the permanent teeth have come through.

It happens primarily to children under the age of 8. Adults already have their permanent teeth, whereas young children do not. If you have not developed this condition by the age of 8, you will probably never get it.

It occurs primarily from the misuse of products that contain fluoride. Dental fluorosis is usually caused by using too much toothpaste or mouthwash being ingested, or drinking fluoridated water. In some cases, it is caused by taking too many fluoride supplements or drinking too much water that contains fluoride.

It is not dangerous. Although teeth may look bad with this condition, dental fluorosis only affects the outer part of the teeth. It is not life-threatening, and it is usually left untreated.

dental fluorosis on teeth

What Does it Look Like?

Most reported cases of dental fluorosis are minor. A person with a minor case may notice faint white streaks or spots on his or her teeth. When the condition is severe, it may leave large white spots, pits, or even yellow or brown stains.

Visiting a dentist for an examination is the only way to know if you actually have this or not. Approximately 1 in 4 people in the U.S. have dental fluorosis, but 99% of the cases are minor and do not require treatment.

How is it Treated?

When a person wants the condition fixed, these are the options:

Tooth whitening services – whitening gels often have the ability to remove or reduce the stains caused by dental fluorosis. They may have to be used more than once, however.

Enamel microabrasion – This is a fairly non-invasive method of treating the tooths aesthetics.  during this method of treatment, the dentist first subjects the tooth to some acid and then sands away a small layer of enamel off the outside of the tooth using a pumice.

Dental crowns, veneers, or bonding – with severe discoloration, covering the tooth is often the best remedy. Dentists do this with a dental crown or veneer or by adding a bonding material to the front of the tooth.

Preventing, Identifying, And Fixing A Dental Abscess

Cavities are bad enough. A dental abscess is like a larger, infected cavity. Dental abscesses typically develop from unattended cavities. The cavity acts as a haven for different bacteria. These bacteria multiply and eat at the tooth, causing decay. However, an abscess can also occur during an injury. The exposed area becomes vulnerable to the bacteria. Gingivitis and age can also allow bacteria to develop and rot the tooth.

dental abscessPreventing a Dental Abscess

The first step in preventing a dental abscess is proper dental hygiene. This means brushing your teeth two times a day and flossing after every meal. Proper dental hygiene also requires biannual dental checkups and upgrading to a new toothbrush every 4 months.

Signs of a Dental Abscess

  • severe pain
  • sensitivity to temperature
  • swelling of the gums, jaw, or neck
  • active sores in the mouth

Curing an Abscess

The first thing your dentist will do to cure your abscess is help you fight the infection. To do this, he will likely prescribe antibiotics and possibly drain the infected area. The medicine can be administered through injection or a laser. While providing a cleaner area for the dentist to work on, it may not eliminate the bacterial problem entirely. To drain the rest of the infection, the dentist may decide to perform a root canal or an extraction.

Unfortunately, when unattended, a dental abscess may result in severe root damage. This occurs when the infection has made its way into the living portion of your tooth, known as the pulp. You will then likely be scheduling a root canal. During the root canal, the doctor will remove the infected portions of the pulp. He will then use a cap to secure the tooth.

If the infection has made the tooth unsalvageable, the doctor may decide to remove or extract your tooth. After the infection is removed and the gums are restored, an implant will be put in its place. Restoring the damaged gums typically requires grafting surgery if the root canal is insufficient.

To keep your smile looking its best, you should take preventative care seriously. However, when your dental hygiene schedule has failed or trauma occurs, your dentist can take the right steps to keep you smiling.

Be sure to get your teeth checked out at your local dentist regularly to ensure you don’t have any potential abscesses in the making. This will save you a lot of time and hassle in the long run.