Wisdom teeth are the third set of molars and the last adult teeth to erupt into the mouth. Most people have four wisdom teeth, two on the bottom and two on top. Many people do not have enough room for these molars to emerge completely, causing them to become impacted in the gum. Impacted wisdom teeth are difficult to clean, making them more susceptible to decay and disease. Other dental problems caused by impacted wisdom teeth include pain, damage to surrounding teeth, and bite alignment issues. For these reasons, your dentist may recommend having the impacted teeth removed to prevent future problems.
Surgery to extract an impacted wisdom tooth or set of wisdom teeth is usually an outpatient procedure done in your dentist or oral surgeon’s office. If the tooth or surrounding area are deemed to have an infection prior to the procedure, surgery will be delayed, and your dental professional will likely prescribe antibiotics to help heal the area.
On the day of surgery, local anesthesia will be administered to numb the area where the extracted tooth will be removed. Depending on the severity of your case, your dentist or oral surgeon may also utilize a general anesthetic.
Once the anesthesia has taken effect, an incision will be made to open up the gum and any bone blocking the tooth will be removed. Your dentist or surgeon will then separate the tissue connecting the bone to the tooth and extract the tooth. Some teeth are too large to remove in one piece, in which case your surgeon will cut the tooth into smaller pieces to make it easier to remove. Finally, the incision is closed with stitches and packed with gauze to help alleviate bleeding.
Long-term complications from impacted wisdom tooth surgery are rare. To ensure a successful recovery from this or any oral surgery, be sure to follow all aftercare instructions provided by your dentist or oral surgeon.
We look forward to seeing you in our Fernandina Beach dental office
Sedation dentistry is rapidly becoming an extremely popular choice for patients, offering them the best oral care available while providing them with a comfortable, stress-free experience. Benefits exist for both the patient and the dentist, especially for certain patient groups, who may only be able to obtain dental care they need while under some kind of sedation.
Sedation dentistry uses various medications to help the patient relax while undergoing a dental procedure. The sedation allows the patient to be free of fear, anxiety and stress, and in some cases, to have a reduced memory of the treatment itself. This allows for a much more favorable experience, especially when undergoing invasive, extensive or multiple-visit treatments such as extractions, gum surgery, root canals, or some cosmetic dentistry procedures.
Because sedation dentistry is specifically designed to reduce or to alleviate fear and anxiety, the patient is more relaxed during the dental visit. Dentists working on tense or anxious patients are often aware of the problem and have to work with greater care. The removal of this patient tension allows the dentist to work more quickly and surely, leading to a shorter appointment and a more positive experience for both doctor and patient.
Dentists require cooperation from the patient in order to proceed with any dental procedure. Patients who are very young, have special needs, an acute gag reflex, or movement control issues can be extremely challenging for dentists to administer the necessary care. Sedation dentistry can solve this problem, allowing for patients to be cooperative and still, providing the safest, best experience for patient and doctor alike.
Patients who have positive experiences at the dentist are more likely to return for regular dental check-ups. These patients have overall better dental hygiene and tend to have fewer serious dental issues over time. Patients who have good oral care will feel better about their smiles and will be more confident and comfortable throughout the day.
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You might have the idea that visiting the dentist isn’t that important in the overall picture of your health, but you’re wrong. Establishing a relationship with a good dentist is key to being healthy, and seeking treatment from a family dentist is a great way to spread that good health throughout your whole family.
Family dentists provide treatment for all ages. Dentists suggest that kids should begin visiting the dentist around their first birthday so that they can become adjusted to the environment and learn about proper hygiene. It’s helpful for little ones to go to the same dentist from the start, as they become comfortable with the staff and office. In theory, kids are able to go to the same family dentist their whole lives!
Adults, teenagers, and seniors are all able to visit the family dentist as well. These professionals are trained and experienced in handling dental conditions throughout all age ranges, from filling cavities common in the younger crowds to cosmetic treatments for the middle-aged to dental implants or gum disease in older adults. One dentist and one convenient location makes it easy on the whole family.
Dentists suggest getting checkups every six months for optimum oral health. That way examinations can catch and treat problems early, before they have a chance to worsen into serious issues. Professional cleanings keep your teeth healthy and looking great. Regular checkups can also improve your overall health, as studies show there’s a strong link between gum disease and issues like heart disease, diabetes, or stroke. Expectant mothers are also at higher risk of complications if they have gum disease. Oral cancer is another thing family dentists watch for during checkups. Chances of recovery are greatly increased when oral cancer is detected early.
The importance of having a family dentist cannot be downplayed. The smiles and the health of every member of your family will benefit.
We look forward to seeing you in our Fernandina Beach dental office
If you have chosen to utilize sedation dentistry to address your anxiety or discomfort during dental treatment, you need to make preparations beforehand to be certain you are safe following your dental visit. Some sedation options leave you unable to drive or make decisions clearly, and you should be prepared to face whatever lingering effects come your way.
Conscious oral sedation is prescribed in the form of a pill that is taken orally. Typically, this pill is taken about an hour prior to the procedure in order to ensure relaxation and ease. Often a dentist will recommend that the patient take a dose the night prior to the treatment, making sure that the patient rests well and is in the best mental and physical condition for recovery. Laughing gas, or nitrous oxide, is another form of conscious sedation. Both the pills and the gas leave patients comfortable and at ease, but still responsive to commands by the dentist or staff.
The next level of sedation is intravenous sedation, also called IV sedation. This sedation is the fastest acting of all the sedation dentistry treatments. A known side-effect of IV sedation is memory loss, so most patients won’t remember what happened while they were “under.” Many patients believe erroneously that they were completely “out” or unconscious during treatment, but this isn’t true. You are still able to respond to commands, but the memory loss makes you feel as though you are asleep.
You will not be allowed to drive yourself following IV or conscious oral sedation. Even though you are up and walking and talking, it may take hours before the effects of the sedation wear off enough to make it safe for you to drive. Do not even consider trying to trick the dentist into thinking someone else is driving you home. You could cause a serious accident and harm yourself or others.
Talk to your dentist to determine what is recommended as far as recovery time goes for your specific sedation dentistry treatment choices.
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If you suspect you have an infected tooth, you might wonder if root canal treatment might be in your future. Do you have another option? Yes! One such alternative has been in existence for decades, but has only recently come to be more effective due to advancements in materials. This process is called pulp capping.
Pulp capping can help patients whose root infections have not yet reached the tooth’s nerve. Root infections begin when bacteria enters the pulp of the tooth through a crack or a large cavity. In a standard root canal procedure, the pulp and nerve of the tooth is hollowed out, cleaned and sealed, typically with a crown restoration.
With pulp capping, the nerve is preserved and the tooth is often repaired with a filling instead of a crown. Pulp capping allows the dentist to clean and protect the pulp, defending it from infection with medicine. With a successful pulp cap, the dentin of the tooth begins to regrow over the pulp cap. Advancements in the sealants used during these types of procedures has allowed for a greater percentage of success.
If you have a toothache, it’s important to see your dentist immediately. Pulp capping has a narrow window in which it can be performed. If your tooth is too infected, the pulp and nerve of your tooth may already be infected, and it’s too late for pulp capping to be effective.
A pulp cap is a far less invasive procedure than a root canal treatment or a tooth extraction, and there is less recovery time and tooth sensitivity following the treatment.
If you suspect you may have a tooth in trouble, talk to your dentist now. You might be able to save yourself a root canal treatment.
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Life can be full of frustrations, demands, deadlines, and inconveniences. For lots of people, stress is a way of life. The problem is that when you’re constantly stressed out, your health can pay the price. There are many health conditions that are caused or worsen due to high stress levels, but did you know that your mouth may be affected in the form of teeth grinding?
What is teeth grinding?
The condition of grinding or gnashing your teeth together is called bruxism, and often includes clenching your jaw. It commonly happens while sleeping, so that you may not even realize you’re doing it. Sometimes a sleeping partner hears it, or your dentist may recognize the signs of unusual wear on your teeth.
What does my stress level have to do with it?
Teeth grinding has been linked to stress and anxiety. Studies have shown that people who are stressed from daily life and don’t have adequate coping methods are more likely to grind their teeth. Experts say that both adults and children facing stress sometimes cope by grinding their teeth.
How does teeth grinding affect me?
Grinding your teeth has more negative effects than you might think. It often causes headaches, earaches, and sleep problems. It can cause chipped, loose, cracked, or sensitive teeth. Tooth enamel can suffer excessive wear, and gum tissue may be damaged. Teeth grinding also often causes a painful jaw disorder of the temporomadibular joint, commonly called TMJ.
What can I do about it?
Your dentist may recommend wearing an over-the-counter or custom mouthguard at night, to protect your teeth from further damage. Medications usually are not helpful, although a muscle relaxant before bed may help prevent jaw clenching. The ideal treatment is to try to reduce or eliminate stress that may be contributing to your teeth grinding. Relaxation therapy, stress management, corrective exercises, and counseling are some of the options that dentists suggest to help you remedy the problem.
If you need a dentist in Fernandina Beach contact us today