Okuda Cosmetic Dentistry Blog
Posts for tag: Veneers
Veneers are versatile, treating many cosmetic dental issues and can provide a range of results. From subtly tweaking your smile’s small imperfections to completely renewing your look, veneers can help most people who wish to improve the appearance of their smile. But what can veneers do for you? Find out more about dental veneers with Dr. Wynn Okuda at Okuda Cosmetic Dentistry in Honolulu, HI.
What do veneers treat?
Veneers can treat a myriad of problems. The veneer fits over the surface of the tooth, allowing it to simply cover the tooth’s imperfections. Thanks to this design, dentists can use veneers to treat:
- cracked teeth
- chipped teeth
- discolored or yellowed teeth
- uneven teeth
- slightly misaligned teeth
- slightly under or overcrowded teeth
- too-wide or narrow teeth
How can veneers help me?
Veneers stand alone on each individual tooth. This means that you can, for example, renew the appearance of a single chipped tooth or use veneers to completely overhaul your smile. A dental laboratory custom-makes each veneer especially for your smile to fit exactly into your existing teeth. In addition to its shape and size, the laboratory can also color-match the veneer to blend seamlessly in with your teeth.
Dental Veneers in Honolulu, HI
While veneers have many benefits which can help in various situations, not everyone is a good candidate for this procedure. The teeth which hold the veneers should be in good dental health and strong enough to provide a sturdy foundation for the veneer. Additionally, patients should understand that veneers require dentists to remove a super-thin layer of enamel from the surface of the teeth, meaning this procedure is permanent. Veneers can last for years before requiring replacement, making at-home oral care crucial to extending the life of your restorations. Brush twice a day and floss at least once in between twice-yearly dental examinations and professional dental cleanings.
For more information on dental veneers, please contact Dr. Wynn Okuda at Okuda Cosmetic Dentistry in Honolulu, HI. Call (808) 734-1099 to schedule your appointment for a veneer consultation with Dr. Okuda today!
Why you should choose porcelain veneers
Porcelain veneers can give you a custom-made smile, guaranteed to make you proud. You deserve to have the renewed confidence a beautiful smile can bring. Porcelain veneers are the modern, state-of-the-art treatment to reshape your smile. Dr. Wynn H. Okuda in Honolulu, Hawaii wants you to know the many reasons why you should choose porcelain veneers.
Porcelain veneers from your Honolulu dentist can reshape your smile by fixing many major and minor imperfections in your front teeth including:
- Excessive, uneven wear from poor tooth alignment or grinding
- Chipped, jagged edges from aging or using your teeth as tools
- Stains and discolorations from smoking, coffee or medications
- Breakage and damage from injury or trauma
- Spaces, gaps or overlapping teeth due to genetics
There are many reasons why you should choose porcelain veneers to reshape your smile. These are just a few:
- Porcelain veneers are beautiful and natural-looking, because porcelain reflects light, just like your natural teeth.
- Porcelain veneers are strong because they are created out of high-tech materials.
- Porcelain veneers are durable; they will last for many years with proper care.
- Porcelain veneers are conservative because Dr. Okuda only removes a minimal amount of tooth surface.
- Porcelain veneers repel stains and remain sparkling white.
For amazing before and after photos of what porcelain veneers can do to reshape smiles, please visit the smile gallery page on Dr. Okuda’s website at http://www.okudacosmeticdentistry.com/before-and-after-smile-gallery.html
Dr. Okuda begins your porcelain veneer treatment by removing just enough tooth surface to accommodate the thickness of the veneers. Then Dr. Okuda will make a model of your teeth and send it to the dental laboratory where skilled dental technicians create your veneers. At your next appointment, Dr. Okuda will cement your beautiful new porcelain veneers.
If your smile isn’t all it can be, it’s time to think about porcelain veneers to reshape and renew your smile. Don’t wait! Get the smile you deserve by calling Dr. Wynn H. Okuda in Honolulu, Hawaii. Call today and get started on reshaping your smile!
Ready to hide dental imperfections once and for all? Now you can with veneers!
Nothing looks better than a pristine smile. But if certain imperfections have you smiling less than you would like then it’s time to talk to your Honolulu, HI cosmetic dentist Dr. Wynn Okuda about whether veneers can help.
These wafer-thin shells may not seem that impressive at first but when they are added to the front of your teeth, you’ll be amazed just how much they can improve the overall look of your smile. Porcelain veneers are custom-made to cover surface imperfections and change the color, shape or size of a tooth or teeth.
While veneers can be made from a variety of materials porcelain tends to be the most popular because it is resistant to stains and also reflects light the same way as natural teeth. However, resin veneers often require less tooth enamel removal prior to placement. In order to decide which type of veneers are the best kind for you, you’ll need to talk with your dentist in Honolulu, HI.
When to Consider Dental Veneers
Veneers are most commonly used to hide:
- Discolored teeth
- Misshapen or worn down teeth
- Spaces between teeth
- Chipped, cracked or fractured teeth
- Misaligned, crooked or uneven teeth
If you are dealing with unsightly teeth and are looking for a way to get a whiter, straighter and more attractive smile then veneers may be the best option for you. Veneers can be used to fix so many different dental problems so find out how you can benefit from these cosmetic restorations.
Getting Your Veneers
Once we’ve evaluated your smile and determined that veneers are right for you, we will need to take X-rays and impressions of your mouth. These impressions will provide a lab with the proper tooth measurements from which to create your perfectly shaped and crafted veneers.
Next, your teeth will need to be prepared for your veneers. We will remove about ½ millimeter of enamel from the front of your teeth to prepare for the added thickness of the veneers. Don’t worry, this isn’t painful and many times this can be performed without needing local anesthesia.
Veneers are usually fabricated within one to two weeks. After which, you will come into our office for a fitting. We will temporarily apply the veneers to make sure you love your new look. Once you have approved your veneers will be permanently attached.
For all your general, cosmetic and restorative dental needs, turn to Dr. Wynn Okuda DMD, Inc. in Honolulu for the smile you want. We are here to cater to all of your smile goals. Call us today to schedule a consultation.
Do you have unflattering teeth that are crooked, poorly aligned, severely stained, or just plain unattractive? Don't worry: even dental patients without a perfect smile now can achieve one when they take their dysfunctional teeth to the expert cosmetic dentists at Wynn H. Okuda, DMD, Inc., as Dr. Okuda and his trusted dental professionals on site make it their mission to turn your unappealing frown into a superstar smile!
One of the leading ways Dr. Okuda and his staff accomplish this is through porcelain crowns, which are similar to porcelain veneers in that they can cover up even the most unattractive teeth and give your smile the natural appearance of all-white chompers all over again. Frequently used after a dental restoration procedure has taken place in one's mouth, crowns sit atop the remainder of your healthy tooth after the decayed section has been removed, and are bonded onto the tooth's surface indefinitely, yielding a brighter, more beautiful appearance to each and every grin thereafter!
Both veneers and crowns can also help achieve a winning smile in your mouth by altering the shape, length, and position of your teeth. They can even help re-align any out-of-place teeth and fill unsightly gaps between existing teeth. Using the bonding method to fuse them to your available tooth surface once it's time, your crowns or veneers, as the case may be, help to strengthen the natural tooth. After all, achieving the perfect smile can't be maintained unless there's a strong foundation set in place!
For more information on restorative dental solutions for your smile like crowns or veneers, give Dr. Okuda a call today at(808) 734-1099. You feeling confident in your smile again is always the top priority for its staff of dental professionals, so come on in to find out just what your smile's been missing right here in Honolulu, HI!
What are Veneers?
- Veneers offer a more natural appearance.
- Veneers can be customized to match the color of existing teeth.
- Veneers resist stains more effectively than other materials or even natural teeth.
With Veneers, You Too Can Have the Smile of Your Dreams
Creating the ultimate smile is not as easy as you may think. Depending on a patients initial problems, there can be underlying issues that need to be addressed before your dentist decides to start placing on porcelain veneers. The amount of preparation done by the dentist will reflect in the end results as well as the longevity of your veneers.
The use of a ceramic artist rather than a dental laboratory technician is also a critical component of having an esthetic result. The dentist you choose must have very detailed instructions with the ceramic artist, and the dentist needs to be able to communicate their artistic vision to give you the best end result.
Another critical component is having your dentist create a 3 dimensional wax rendition of their design for your new smile. When you are able to see what the dentist proposes your new smile design will look like in advance, you will be able to make the best decision if that dentist is right for you. Very few dentists do their own wax rendition, most send it to a dental lab so be sure the cosmetic dentist you are seeing does their own wax-up.
Seeing before and after images that were actually taken by the cosmetic dentist is critical in providing you actual examples of their work, both the dentist and the laboratory. The porcelain veneers should match the patient and should not all look the same. The smiles should be customized to that individual patient.
Temporary restorations can be used as a preview for you to see what the size and shape of your newporcelain veneers will look like on you. Once the temporary restorations have been placed be sure the dentist will allow you to go home for a few days and evaluate the temporaries. Then request a subsequent appointment where you and your cosmetic dentist can evaluate and modify the shapes and sizes of the veneers prior to the fabrication of your permanent restorations. This way you have the opportunity to try the veneers on and have them modified prior to your permanent restorations being fabricated.
Hopefully this will help you to feel empowered to find a cosmetic dentist who will best suite your needs.
It seems that the popularity of teeth whitening and bleaching continues to grow. And with that, so does the number of toothpastes, gels and procedures available to the public that claim to whiten their dark, yellow or stained teeth. Some products may work fine. However, some products can leave a person in a worse situation than before they started using them. Unwanted side effects may include accelerated gum disease, or having teeth of mismatched colors. Don’t fall victim to using the product that is merely the most convenient to obtain. Asking your dentist about what is the best whitener for you may save you money, time and heartache.
WHAT CAUSES TEETH TO DARKEN?
Several factors may cause our teeth to discolor through the years. The red wines, coffee, tea and cola we drink expose our teeth to staining liquids. Although they only affect the surface at first, through the years this stain becomes a part of the tooth. Smokers also have an additional attack on their teeth from tobacco.
Even if we stay away from dark beverages and smoking, there are other reasons why teeth darken. For one, the tooth may simply yellow with age. Other people may have discolored teeth from the start, caused by medications taken by them or their expectant mother years ago. Finally, if the tooth is injured either by impact or decay reaching the pulp, it may cause a grayish or brownish appearance that originates in the middle of the tooth.
PROS AND CONS OF OVER-THE-COUNTER TEETH WHITENERS
Is teeth bleaching the solution for all these situations? The television infomercials, products in the drugstore and advertisements sure make it seem that way. They promise whiter teeth in days or sooner, no matter what. But what should you really believe? On the one hand, people want a product that is inexpensive and easy to access. But on the other hand, people also want a product that works and won’t harm them.
Quite a few dental whitening products in the drugstore only affect the surface of the tooth. These pastes work on the outside layer of the tooth with a mild abrasive, to remove a minimal amount of stain built up by coffee drinking and smoking. Some people complain about tooth sensitivity after using toothpaste like this for a period of time. Frankly, a professional cleaning by a dental hygienist would be more effective, and it also addresses optimizing dental health by removing calculus and tartar.
Other dental whitening products may be harmful to the gums and other soft tissue of the mouth. “One-size-fits-all” bleaching trays may not fit well, and therefore force large amounts of bleaching gel against gums for hours. In some people this may cause mild irritation; in others with certain dental conditions such as gum disease, this may accelerate the disease process. Through a comprehensive oral exam and evaluation of x-rays, your dentist can tell you if it is safe for you to bleach.
TEETH WHITENING WITH A DENTIST-APPROVED BLEACHING SYSTEM
So let’s say you do commit yourself to a dentist-approved bleaching system and are all set to go. There are two ways for dentists to assist you with bleaching. As the name suggests, “in-office” bleaching takes place in the dental office. A gentle bleaching gel is placed on your teeth, and a light source is applied. Depending on the lightening you want to attain, this procedure may achieve your desired lighter shade in one appointment. Sometimes one appointment is not enough, and a follow-up appointment may be needed.
“Home bleaching” takes place outside the dental office, either while you sleep or at your leisure. A custom-fitted, clear plastic tray is made in the dental office. Again, a gentle bleaching gel is placed in the tray, and the tray is fitted snugly over your upper or lower teeth. Optimal results are usually achieved in about 10 days of use. Both these types of procedures allow flexibility and control over the whiteness you achieve.
NOT EVERYONE IS A CANDIDATE FOR TEETH BLEACHING
But wait! There’s still a major question left: Will teeth bleaching address your specific dental needs? The answer is: It depends.
Although dentist-prescribed bleaching is a safe and simple way to whiten teeth, unfortunately not everyone is an eligible candidate for this procedure. Basically, the bleaching gels are able to address the outer layer of the tooth. However, if the stains are very dark and deep in the teeth, bleaching is not the answer.
The ideal dental situation for bleaching is someone with no fillings or restorations in the front of the mouth, straight teeth, and yellowing or darkening of the teeth mainly due to years of drinking red wine, cola, coffee and tea. Staining due to medications such as tetracycline or injuries is not likely to be benefited by bleaching on a long-term basis, as the stain is too deep within the tooth. In addition, because of extreme sensitivity and/or other conditions of the gums, certain patients are unable to bleach their teeth.
ASK YOUR DENTIST ABOUT OTHER AVAILABLE OPTIONS TO ACHIEVE A BRIGHT SMILE
However, don’t be disappointed if you are not a good candidate for bleaching. There are many other ways to cosmetically give you the bright smile you’ve always wanted. Ask your cosmetic dentist what your options are.
It’s important to remember that every person’s dental situation is unique. The infomercials, other advertisements, and numerous dental products at the drugstore attempt to offer one cure for countless cosmetic dental problems. By talking with your dental professional and not taking the easy shortcut, you will be assured of safe teeth whitening and won’t spend unnecessary money on products that won’t work for you.
Look in the mirror…and give yourself a big smile. Are you happy with the smile looking back at you? How much does it matter? According to the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD), 90 percent of Americans agree that an attractive smile is an important social asset. Seventy-five percent agree that an unattractive smile can hurt a person’s chances for career success. However, only 50 percent of Americans are satisfied with their smile.
THE POSITIVE ASPECTS OF A SMILE
Why does a smile say so much? Mainly because it’s in a central, very noticeable position of one’s face. It’s also one of our key sources of non-verbal communication. A smile conveys a powerful range of emotion to others, from acceptance to confidence, to greeting to happiness. Many experts state that a smile, or lack of one, can make a significant difference in our professional and personal lives. Barbara Walters once said, “There are few times in our life when it isn’t too melodramatic to say that your destiny hangs on the impression you make.” According to Maui resident and lecturer Sam Horn in her book Concrete Confidence, smiling is essential in creating a solid first impression, and in putting yourself and others at ease in that first five minutes of an interaction. She writes, “The very first step to establishing a positive response in another person is to flash them a genuine, heartfelt smile…. Simply said, it’s hard to dislike someone who smiles at you. A smile sets up a reciprocal reaction. Recipients almost involuntarily smile back.”
She continues that, just as in one-on-one interactions, smiling makes a striking difference for public speaking. Especially for beginners, if a speaker is preoccupied with their fears, they often greet their audience with a stern look and launch into their speech. The effect is appearing unfriendly and harsh. If a big, warm smile is the initial greeting, they appear friendly and establish immediate rapport. “A smile can raise the mood and increase the receptivity of those within its perimeter.”
Sam Horn also writes that another important factor in a good first impression is eye contact. In fact, research has shown that people who pair a smile with eye contact are more successful in their interactions with others than those who do not smile. Smiling people are in general perceived to be more trustworthy and can often be more persuasive, whether in a business or social setting.
So fundamental is a smile in our society that our nation expressed heartfelt sympathy several years ago when we heard through the media about seven-year-old Chelsey Thomas of California who could not smile. She was born with Moebius Syndrome, which is a rare disorder where the nerves and muscles do not permit facial expression. Can you imagine a life where you could not express your joy or happiness with a smile? Can you imagine a life where people assume you’re mad all the time? We all thought it was horrendous. Gladly, we were able to all breathe with relief when she could be helped with corrective surgeries.
SMILING IS GOOD FOR YOU!
According to an article in Men’s Health magazine, there are a multitude of other reasons why you should smile. This article states, “If there has ever been a simple strategy for improving the quality of life, it’s smiling.” As a benefit to yourself, smiling can make you feel good. Certainly we smile when we’re happy, but did you know that you feel happier when you make yourself smile? Smiling produces positive feelings and changes your emotional state for the better. So instead of waiting for the effect to cause you to smile, initiate the effect yourself: show your aloha and smile.
A smile can also help bring about better health for you, as smiling reduces stress. People under stress tend to have a lowered immune system, which may lead to illness. So in addition to getting a flu shot, keep grinning.
EVEN MORE GOOD REASONS TO SMILE
As you probably know, other people make conclusions about you based on your smile. What may surprise you is that it happens in all facets of life. For example, people like to be around smiling people. Your smiling tells others they are well regarded and will feel better about themselves. In one survey, women rated smiling as the number one physical characteristic which initially attracted them to men. A smile beat out other features, such as eyes and physique! So never underestimate the power of a smile.
Another study showed smiling increased the perception of a person’s ability on the job. While still another study concluded that when polling college students about punishing their peers, those who smiled in their photos tended to receive a more lenient punishment for college academic infractions than those who didn’t smile, regardless of guilt. Now this is not to say that a dazzling smile can take the place of hard work in your career, or a huge grin can get you out of a speeding ticket, but you have to admit it is interesting to know what research does show.
THE LIFE-CHANGING POWER OF A SMILE MAKEOVER
So, does a smile have the power to change your life? Absolutely. You may want to take the challenge given by an article in American Salesman titled, “Experiment with a Smile.” The author suggests that tomorrow when you start off your day, put a little smile on your face. Not a big grin that will cause others to talk about you behind your back, but a pleasant crack of a smile, and keep it there. The author hypothesizes that this exercise will have a magnificent effect. “Problems you are having will vanish. Your mind becomes attuned to positive high spirits. The air will feel better to your face. That smile will penetrate into your very heart and soul. You cannot tune in goodwill and the friendship of others when you are broadcasting indifference. It is surprising how people will notice you. The smile has a magnetic power of attraction. It even penetrates into the mind and consciousness of others.” The author says to turn smiling into a habit, to do it all day, every day, and you will enjoy the benefits of your happy expression.
Someone once said, “A smile is a passport that will take you anywhere you want to go.” I have seen great changes in patients after a smile makeover. They went from being self-conscious of their smile to wanting to smile all the time; from being uncertain of themselves and their goals to feeling very confident and achievement-oriented. Because of this, I am a firm believer in the power of the smile and the extraordinary effect on its owner. So remember to wear your smile all day, every day, and see the gifts of happiness come back to you!
This is not your father’s dental office.
Within the last decade, the cosmetic dentistry profession has evolved at great speed.
At our office, art and science have merged to deliver a complete care package. We don’t just fix broken crowns or do root canals – we enhance a person’s lifestyle and well-being. Procedures range from simple teeth bleaching to porcelain veneers to complex full-mouth reconstruction. They address a patient’s desire to close gaps or straighten teeth, have a brighter smile, replace missing teeth or aged restorations, or have a more youthful, natural or elegant looking smile.
THE IMPORTANCE OF A HEALTHY AND ATTRACTIVE SMILE
According to the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD), virtually all Americans (99.7 percent) believe a smile is an important social asset, while 96 percent of adults believe an attractive smile makes a person more appealing to members of the opposite sex. Three-quarters (74 percent) of adults feel an unattractive smile can hurt a person’s chances for career success.
The demand for cosmetic dentistry has increased as the public becomes more educated about the power of healthy teeth and an attractive smile. Within the last five years, teeth bleaching procedures have increased 300 percent and porcelain veneer procedures have increased 250 percent.
It is of the utmost importance to my staff and me to be at the forefront of this evolution, and to help transform the way people perceive the dental profession.
IMPROVING THE QUALITY OF THE DENTAL EXPERIENCE FOR PATIENTS
After some pretty horrifying experiences at the dentist’s office as a child – I can remember one instance where I actually ran and hid in terror – I decided in the seventh grade that I wanted to become a new kind of dentist. I was determined to heal the anxiety and fear many people associate with dental work.
And, I have always had a love for art. Several years into my dental career I realized there is a connection between art and dentistry. Cosmetic Dentistry has been a natural fit for me in blending my two interests.
Over the next several years, we began exploring ways to further improve the dental experience. As stated in a Wall Street Journal article, we helped to pioneer the Spa Dentistry concept which has become a popular trend throughout the world. The Dental Day Spa helps those with high dental anxiety to have dentistry done in a safe and comfortable environment. We pamper patients with massage therapy, aroma- and audio-therapy, aesthetician services, movies during dental treatment, catered lunches, computer access to the Internet and e-mail, even limousine service, to create a “WOW” experience. The concept is becoming more popular today as practitioners realize the patient’s need to relax and feel comfortable while having dental procedures.
PATIENTS ALSO BENEFIT FROM STATE-OF-THE-ART DENTAL TECHNOLOGY
However, it’s also extremely important that we focus daily on maintaining the highest credentials, education and training possible. As the dental profession grows, this should be Priority #1 for anyone seeking cosmetic dentistry services as well. I am proud to be the first AACD Board Accredited cosmetic dentist on Oahu. I spend a significant amount of time lecturing for dental associations and universities nationally and around the world (in Japan, Australia and Singapore, among others), and writing articles for dental trade publications to continue to share my knowledge with other dental professionals.
Not only does this help others in the field, but it helps us to keep our practice at the forefront of global technology, letting us employ world-class knowledge right here in Honolulu (for instance, we unveiled some of the latest technology from Australia). Maintaining a global network has also allowed me to influence product development. As an example, we worked with a manufacturer in Japan to develop bleach specifically for sensitive teeth, making the popular procedure available to many more people.
Like any profession, the cosmetic dental industry faces challenges. One challenge is the word “cosmetic.” It can mistakenly imply “all fluff and no substance.” In actuality, people are either born with or acquire cosmetic dental problems as they go through life, and many of these problems are serious enough to affect health, bite, mouth comfort or self-esteem. That in turn can interfere with career success, relationships and enjoyment of life.
In consideration of this challenge, it may be more accurate to use the terms “dental rejuvenation” or “restorative dentistry.” With the tremendous technology employed in cosmetic dental procedures, facial rejuvenation can be achieved in making a person look 10 years younger in as little as two visits. The end result to cosmetic dentistry, when done correctly, can be extremely natural and long lasting. We balance health, science, function and esthetics, treating the whole patient so they can live their best life. I believe this is a good formula for long-term success.
STRIVING FOR EXCELLENT QUALITY DENTISTRY WHILE PROVIDING A POSITIVE DENTAL EXPERIENCE
Every day I’m thrilled by the feedback my patients give us, which further inspires me to strive for excellent quality dentistry while creating a positive experience for patients. We’ve had patients who haven’t been to a dentist in decades because of their anxiety, and we’ve been able to successfully and comfortably treat them, changing their whole outlook on dental care. Just recently after a procedure, I asked a patient how it went for her. She was so comfortable she had fallen asleep! That’s really validating for me.
I have a vested interest in maintaining impeccable standards in cosmetic dentistry. One of the most effective tools is public education. The more people know, the better equipped they are to seek out and demand excellence. I advise anyone interested in having cosmetic dental work done to first ask friends, relatives and co-workers for recommendations. Research credentials and accreditation online. Make an appointment for a consultation before any work is done. Look at Before and After photos of work personally done by the dentist.
This sets the stage for Patient and Dentist to work together for the best possible results. That’s the essence of good dentistry.
So there you are, minding your own business and drinking your usual, a Grande Mocha Decaf Iced Frappuccino. Then all of a sudden, “Ouch!” Your tooth feels really sensitive. So you drink and chew on the other side of your mouth, hoping the sensitivity doesn’t return. What does this mean? Should you call your dentist? Should you just get toothpaste for sensitivity and consider yourself healed?
The Academy of General Dentistry (AGD) states that sensitive teeth are one of the most common complaints at the dental office, and at least 45 million adults suffer at some time from it. A tooth is normally protected from sensitivity by a layer of hard enamel on its surface, or by gums over its root. Tooth sensitivity occurs when the enamel is worn away or gums recede, causing the dentin to be exposed. The microscopic, nerve-filled tube-like structures within each tooth (“tubules”) are exposed to temperature and air, and a feeling of sensitivity results.
Tooth sensitivity may occur when your teeth come in contact with cold, hot, sweet or sour substances. In addition, pain when chewing, tooth brushing, or even sensitivity to breathing air may have more underlying causes that can be problematic. Many people try their best to ignore this sensitivity, and just chew on the opposite side. It’s important to let your dentist know of these symptoms so he or she may assess your situation and prevent a potential problem from becoming progressively worse.
POSSIBLE CAUSES FOR TEETH TO BECOME SENSITIVE
There are various reasons why a tooth feels sensitive. One cause of tooth sensitivity may be due to vigorous tooth brushing. Using a hard bristled brush or applying too much pressure when brushing may result in the gradual wearing down of tooth enamel. Always use a soft bristled brush. Save the hard bristled ones for scrubbing the sink. Use gentle pressure and circular movements on your teeth. Furthermore, although tartar control toothpaste may work well for some, it may be too abrasive for others. Talk with your dentist or hygienist about your special needs.
Another cause of sensitivity could be a tooth fracture or crack, or even a fracture or crack in a restoration. Sensitivity could also be a sign that a cavity has developed. In addition, gum disease or bite-related problems may cause your gums to recede and expose the root surface. In these situations, various dental procedures such as a restoration (filling or a crown), may be needed to correct the problem.
In addition, with an increase of stress in our daily lives, there has been an increase in “bruxism,” or the grinding of teeth. Teeth grinding over a period of time can cause the wearing away of enamel on the biting surfaces of teeth. When bruxism occurs during sleep, a person is unaware of the damage that is chronically occurring night after night. After prolonged grinding, this may lead to severe pain in all affected teeth. For these situations, your dentist may recommend a preventive approach to correcting these problems.
SOME SOLUTIONS THAT CAN HELP RELIEVE TEETH SENSITIVITY
One solution may include the use of a “bite splint” or a “nightguard.” This can be similar to the mouth guards that athletes wear when playing contact sports. This custom-made acrylic resin guard is used as a shield between the upper and lower teeth. Therefore, as you grind your teeth in your sleep, this bite splint will help protect your teeth. This is especially important to wear when delicate restorations, such as veneers, are present.
Finally, toothpastes for sensitive teeth may help to relieve the pain, but are not the solution for everyone. What toothpaste for sensitive teeth does is coat the exposed dentin tubules to minimize its nerve exposure. Another solution your dentist may suggest is an in-office treatment, such as a desensitizing gel to apply to your teeth.
TALK WITH YOUR DENTIST OR HYGIENIST ABOUT TREATMENT OPTIONS
So the next time you’re drinking that Frappuccino and your teeth feel sensitive, don’t just turn the other cheek! It’s wise to mention your sensitivity to your dental hygienist or dentist, so they can determine exactly what’s going on and discuss with you the different treatment options available. Many people just want to ignore tooth sensitivity; however, it’s always better to be informed and be proactive about your dental health.