Okuda Cosmetic Dentistry Blog
Posts for: May, 2015
If you have been avoiding that nagging toothache, it’s time to schedule an appointment with your dentist. Leaving a cavity to its own devices can cause serious problems to both your teeth and gums.
Lost fillings, crowns, tooth decay, and cavities under existing fillings don’t always cause pain, but according to your dentist, those issues will not go away on their own.
Most people do not realize that old fillings can be harboring dirty little secrets, cavities underneath existing restorations.
The average life span of a silver amalgam filling is about 11 or 12 years, Composite fillings will only last about five or six years. Your dentist is the only one who can examine your teeth in order to determine if tooth decay has developed underneath your fillings. Even if your fillings are new, you should still have them examined twice a year when you schedule your bi-annual checkups.
Fillings could become discolored over time and will eventually wear out. Tooth colored, or composite fillings can darken, yellow or pick up stains. Chewing is also hard on fillings because of the tremendous pressure. If a filling has not been placed properly, it can also cause problems.
According to Hawaii Cosmetic Dentist Dr. Wynn Okuda, fillings can leak, crack, or chip and once this occurs, decay will begin to form. Bits of food and bacteria will seep under your cracked or broken fillings. This can also happen if your fillings are leaking. Because it is impossible to clean under your existing fillings, cavities will begin to develop. Unfortunately, the decay could become extensive before any pain occurs. If this happens, you may need a root canal.
Both composite and amalgam fillings can chip or crack regardless of when those cavities were filled. Most cracks occur over a period time as chewing and biting can eventually wear down the filling in the restored tooth. Cracks around the edges of your fillings can also occur over time. When this happens, your dentist will have to replace your existing fillings using amalgam or composite resin materials.
Leaking fillings are another problem that must be taken care of by your dentist as quickly as possible. Fillings will leak if they are not fitting tightly. Leaking fillings allow saliva and debris to seep in between the tooth and the filling leading to sensitivity, discoloration and even tooth decay.
Grinding and tooth clenching can also cause added stress to your existing fillings. Those fillings, regardless of their composition, will eventually develop craze lines or small cracks. If you shine a flashlight on your teeth, you will be able to see any cracks that have developed on your tooth.
If your teeth are sensitive, or if part of your filling is missing or cracked, schedule an appointment with your dentist. Sooner rather than later is imperative in order to avoid more costly procedures.
A beautiful smile is just a phone call away thanks to world-renowned cosmetic dentist Dr. Wynn Okuda. Located in beautiful Honolulu, Hawaii, the Dental Day Spa of Hawaii has the tools and expertise to give you a smile that will turn heads.
Dental Veneers, Dental Implants and a complete mouth restoration are just a few of the restorative dental procedures offered by the Dental Day Spa of Hawaii.
During your appointment for cosmetic dentistry, Dr. Okuda will make sure that you are a good candidate for dental restoration. Your teeth and gums need to be healthy before any type of restoration can proceed. If you have dental caries or gum disease, Dr. Okuda will take care of those issues before proceeding with your cosmetic dental restorations.
If you are suffering from gum disease, Dr. Okuda may recommend a deep cleaning, also known as Root Planing and Scaling.
Root Planing and Scaling is one of the best ways to treat periodontal disease and severe forms of gingivitis. Root Planing and Scaling cleans between your teeth and down to the roots to remove plaque and tartar. Your dentist may or may not use a local anesthetic to numb the area.
According to Web MD, some dentists use ultrasonic tools for Root Planing and Scaling, and although this type of procedure is not as uncomfortable as standard scraping tools, your situation may not need an ultrasonic tool.
If you have a severe case of gum disease, antibiotic fibers may be placed inside the pockets between your gums and your teeth during the Root Planing and Scaling therapy treatment. The antibiotics used by your dentist can help prevent infection and speed up the healing process. Your dentist will remove the antibiotic fibers about one week after you have had the procedure.
Although Root Planing and Scaling to treat gum disease causes little discomfort or none at all, you may experience some sensitivity along your gum line. If you received an anesthetic before the procedure, your gums and lips may be numb for two or three hours after the Root Planing and Scaling treatment.
Root Planing and Scaling is recommended when your gums are no longer sitting tight against the roots of your teeth. This procedure may also be recommended if tartar and hard calcium deposits have begun to form between your teeth and gums.
If you practice good oral hygiene, flossing once and brushing twice each day, your gingivitis, or periodontal disease will cease to exist allowing your gums to become healthy, pink, and firm.
For more information regarding restoration and healthy teeth and gums, schedule an appointment with Dr. Okuda who can determine if you are a good candidate for cosmetic dentistry.