Oral Surgery

Identifying, Preventing, and Treating Gum Disease

examining gums for gum disease

Gum disease is a broad term that encompasses several variations of moderate to severe gum problems. Gingivitis and periodontal disease are among the most common types of gum disease, and there are many others.

What Is Gingivitis?

Gingivitis is caused when excessive plaque accumulates on teeth. Certain toxins that are caused by the plaque then irritate nearby gum tissue, which can lead to puffy, red, or bleeding gums.

What Is Periodontal Disease?

Periodontal disease is a type of infection that is caused by certain types of bacteria that are present in accumulated plaque. Periodontal disease often begins with gingivitis, which progresses into the more serious and less treatable periodontal disease.

Common Symptoms of Gum Disease

There are a wide variety of potential warning signs of gum disease, which can vary depending on the severity and specific type of gum disease. Some symptoms of gum disease that are often seen include:

  • Red or puffy gums
  • Tender, painful gums
  • Bleeding gums, particularly when brushing, flossing or eating
  • Tooth separation from gums
  • Bad breath

Man and woman take care of their teeth

Preventing and Treating Gum Disease

Proper tooth care is the first line of defense against gum disease. Most types of gum disease can be prevented through adequate brushing and flossing, and using fluoride rinse or other mouthwash can also help to reduce the risk of gum disease. Eating a healthy diet can also help to prevent gum disease. Minimizing sugar, in particular, is one of the most helpful dietary choices as far as eliminating as much plaque buildup as possible.

Severe cases of gum disease may require professional dental treatment, such as:

  • Prescription medications
  • Root planing and scaling
  • Gum grafts
  • Surgery

At Blue Ash Dental Group, we care about giving you the tools to keep your teeth and gums healthy. Contact us today to learn more about gingivitis, periodontal disease, or other types of gum disease, or to schedule an appointment!

Everything You Need to Know About Sedation Dentistry

Young girl with dental anxiety

What is Dental Anxiety?

Dental Anxiety is a severe form of anxiety that occurs among individuals when they have to go to the dentist’s office to get any work done on their mouths. For some individuals, this fear is so crippling that they would avoid or ignore warnings to go to the dentist all together because they are too afraid of what will happen if they go. Fear can harm an individual’s oral health to skip going to the dentists for years or even decades on end. However, the good news for those that experience this anxiety is that there are alternatives to avoiding the dentist’s office complete.

Sedation Dentistry

The alternative that is getting offered today is called Sedation Dentistry. Sedation Dentistry is a form of dentistry that helps those who have severe anxieties or fears of dentists working in their mouths. Sedation Dentistry allows people who would not otherwise be able to have procedures completed get the dental care they need to help them maintain good oral health.

Self-Soothing Preparations For a Dental Visit

While many individuals have quite a fear of the dentist, there is a lot that you can do on your own to help calm those fears. The following are keys to helping you calm your own fears about going to your dentist:

  • Confirm exactly when your appointment is (date, time, location, etc.) and knowing where you need to be and when will help you plan every detail accordingly.
  • Arrive early if you are going to need to fill out paperwork or prepare yourself for your appointment so that you are ready to go on time.
  • Ask your dentist about what exactly they will be doing before they even put a tool into your mouth. Having them explain their procedures ahead of time will help ensure that you are not in for any surprises once they begin working.
  • Ask any questions you have to ensure that you understand everything that your appointment will entail.
  • Request Novocaine or other painkillers if the dentist will be doing any procedures that may cause discomfort during your visit.

Taking control of your dental experience and understanding what the dentist will be doing can help lessen your anxiety throughout your appointment.

Options Available for Calmer, More Comfortable Dental WorkSedation dentistry: Calm patient

Today’s modern dental landscape provides a variety of options for those who have severe dental anxiety and may need more than just information ahead of time in order to be able to handle their appointment in its entirety. The following are approved technologies that can help you overcome the anxiety of a dental appointment:

  • Nitrous oxide, also known as laughing gas, which will help you relax throughout your appointment.
  • Conscious oral sedatives are sometimes provided with nitrous oxide sometimes given separately.
  • Needle-free dentistry is also available using topical products such as Tricaine blue.

All of these are options that are available to help ensure that your visits to the dentist are as comfortable as possible. Dental anxiety is not abnormal and more and more dentists are committed to working with patients who have dental anxiety to ensure that they can still get the oral care they need while they are relaxed and comfortable in the process.

We Can Help

As sedation dentistry continues to advance people who have anxiety and fears of dentists are now finally able to get the care they need and deserve.

At Blue Ash Dental Group we are here to ensure that patients are comfortable throughout their dental appointment. We are committed to working with those with dental anxiety to come up with a treatment plan that works for them and meets their needs. For further assistance please feel free to contact us to schedule a consultation today.

Identifying, Preventing, and Treating Gum Disease

examining gums for gum disease

Gum disease is a broad term that encompasses several variations of moderate to severe gum problems. Gingivitis and periodontal disease are among the most common types of gum disease, and there are many others.

What Is Gingivitis?

Gingivitis is caused when excessive plaque accumulates on teeth. Certain toxins that are caused by the plaque then irritate nearby gum tissue, which can lead to puffy, red, or bleeding gums.

What Is Periodontal Disease?

Periodontal disease is a type of infection that is caused by certain types of bacteria that are present in accumulated plaque. Periodontal disease often begins with gingivitis, which progresses into the more serious and less treatable periodontal disease.

Common Symptoms of Gum Disease

There are a wide variety of potential warning signs of gum disease, which can vary depending on the severity and specific type. Some symptoms of gum disease that are often seen include:

  • Red or puffy gums
  • Tender, painful gums
  • Bleeding gums, particularly when brushing, flossing, or eating
  • Tooth separation from gums
  • Bad breath

man and woman preventing gum disease by practicing good hygiene

Prevention and Treatment

Proper tooth care is the first line of defense against gum disease. Most types of gum disease can be prevented through adequate brushing and flossing, and using fluoride rinse or other mouthwash can also help to reduce the risk of gum disease. Eating a healthy diet can also help to prevent gum disease. Minimizing sugar, in particular, is one of the most helpful dietary choices as far as eliminating as much plaque buildup as possible.

Severe cases may require professional dental treatment, such as:

  • Prescription medications
  • Root planing and scaling
  • Gum grafts
  • Surgery

At Blue Ash Dental Group, we care about giving you the tools to keep your teeth and gums healthy. Contact us today to learn more about gingivitis, periodontal disease, or other types of gum disease, or to schedule an appointment!

Preventing Tooth Pain: Causes and Treatment of Tooth Sensitivity

woman suffering from tooth pain

What Is Tooth Sensitivity?

Tooth sensitivity is a type of sharp pain that occurs when a worn or exposed part of the tooth comes in contact with a particular substance, often cold or acidic foods. Each occurrence of pain is generally temporary, but untreated tooth sensitivity is often recurring.

Common Causes of Tooth Sensitivity

Tooth sensitivity can be caused by a wide variety of issues. Some of the most common underlying causes of tooth sensitivity include:

  • Worn or thin tooth enamel
  • Exposed roots
  • Cavities
  • Worn or damaged fillings
  • Cracked or chipped teeth
  • Certain types of gum disease

Man have sensitive teeth with ice on white backgroundWhile many of the common triggers of tooth pain may be misinterpreted as the cause of the problem, these symptoms are more likely to be the results of one of the underlying causes. Some common triggers that often result in tooth pain include:

  • Cold drinks
  • Cold foods, such as ice or ice cream
  • Highly acidic foods, such as oranges, grapefruit, and other citrus fruits
  • Certain ingredients in some mouthwashes, such as alcohol
  • Brushing teeth

Tooth Sensitivity Prevention/Home Treatment Options

Many minor cases of tooth sensitivity can be taken care of at home. Several over-the-counter products or other options are available that can help prevent or reduce tooth sensitivity, such as:

  • Fluoride
  • Special desensitizing toothpaste designed for people with tooth sensitivity
  • Limiting hot, cold, or acidic foods
  • Brushing and flossing teeth more thoroughly

Professional Treatment Options

Severe tooth sensitivity or cases that do not respond well to at-home options may need to be brought to your dentist’s attention. In the case of severe tooth sensitivity, professional treatment options may include:

  • Prescription strength desensitizing toothpaste or other prescription medications
  • Applying bonding resin to exposed roots
  • Root canals, which are intended to target problems deep within the tooth
  • Gum grafts, which cover exposed roots

At Blue Ash Dental Group, we care about helping our patients avoid tooth pain. Contact us today to learn more about tooth sensitivity or to schedule an appointment!

Everything That You Need to Know About Tooth Extractions

Dental equipment holding an extracted tooth from tooth extractions

Everything That You Need to Know About Tooth Extractions:

Tooth extraction is a dental procedure that gets completed when one or more teeth need to get removed from the mouth. Most teeth that get extracted are those that get damaged beyond repair.

What Are the Reasons That People Have Teeth Extracted?

There are quite a variety of reasons that people commonly get teeth extracted. Some of those include the following:

  • Overcrowding: Overcrowding can require one or more teeth to get pulled to create the room for the rest of the teeth to grow in properly. During orthodontic work, a tooth (or multiple) may need to get removed to be able to straighten out the rest of the teeth and to make room for them all to move into their appropriate places.
  • They are damaged and Decayed: One of the most common reasons that teeth have to get extracted is because they get damaged beyond the point that the dentist can replace the tooth. Often, extraction is required, and an implant, bridge, or another device will get placed where the missing tooth/teeth were.
  • Need Replacing: If a tooth gets chipped or broken to the point that it can’t get repaired, the tooth may have to get extracted. The tooth would then need replacing with either an implant or a dental bridge.
  • Wisdom Teeth: Wisdom teeth generally appear between ages 17 and 24. Not everyone will have the buds that allow them to get wisdom teeth. Some people who get them may get up to four (4) wisdom teeth. One will grow behind each molar in the back of the mouth. Sometimes they will come growing in crooked (impacting the other teeth) or cause pain, swelling, or discomfort, in which cases the teeth will need to get removed.

These are the four (4) main reasons that teeth will need extracting. In some cases, it may be more than one of the above that require a tooth to get removed. The last resort is removing the tooth generally a last resort when nothing else can be done to save it.

Panoramic x-ray image of teeth and mouth with wisdom teeth

Types of Tooth Extractions:

There are generally two (2) types of extractions that are common when a tooth needs to get removed. They are as follows:

  • Simple Extraction: Simple extractions are used to remove teeth that are visible within the mouth. This procedure can get done right in your dentist’s office, and you are generally free to leave soon as the tooth/teeth get extracted and the bleeding stops. Teeth are usually able to be removed with just dental forceps.
  • Surgical Extraction: Surgical extractions get performed when the tooth/teeth are not easily accessible inside the mouth. These extractions can include impacted teeth that have not broken through the gum yet such as wisdom teeth. These procedures generally get performed under a general anesthetic. Generally, most of these procedures are done at a specialized clinic, although some dentists might be able to do these procedures in their offices as well.

A large majority of these procedures get done through simple extractions; however, when surgical extractions are necessary, many dentists will refer you to a surgical specialist to remove those teeth.

Pain Management Options:

After you have a tooth removed, you will understandably experience discomfort and soreness for a few days up to a week after your procedure. Most dentists will give you pain medication to help manage the pain. Having the prescription filled and taking the recommended dosage of medication can help greatly reduce your pain in the few days following the procedure.

Avoid chewing hard foods near the extraction site to keep food particles from getting into the area where your tooth got pulled. Eating softer foods such as mashed potatoes or even macaroni and cheese for a few days after your procedure can also help. Avoiding hot/spicy foods as well as alcohol (which can burn the inflamed area and also may react with pain medications you got prescribed) for several days is also advisable.

Begin eating regularly as soon as it is comfortable to do so.

Rinse your mouth with a teaspoon of salt dissolved in a cup (8 oz) of water 2-3 times per day to help keep the area around the pulled tooth from getting infected.

Begin all brushing and flossing activities as you normally would 24 hours after the procedure. Be gentle when cleaning around the area where the tooth got extracted.

Call your doctor right away if you have any severe bleeding or abnormal pain while recovering.

Healing/Aftercare:

While you are recovering, you want to make sure that you do not remove the blood clot from the infected area. This blood clot is how the gums heal themselves from where the tooth was. If the blood clot falls out, it can expose the bone beneath the gums which can cause severe pain and even infections where the tooth got removed.

If you suspect that you have a dry socket or feel more pain in the area where it got removed, call your dentist immediately so they can help you treat it.

Also be sure to effectively clean the site around the wound several times per day and chew on the opposite side of your mouth to avoid getting food particles stuck near where the tooth got extracted.

What Does a Tooth Extraction Cost?

You can expect the average nonsurgical tooth removal procedure to cost between $75 and $300.

For surgical tooth removal, you can expect to pay around $150 to $650.

What We Do

Here at Blue Ash Dental, we strive to provide the best possible care for our patients. We believe that your natural teeth are the best teeth that you can have. However, when the only option is tooth extraction, we are here to help ensure that your procedure and your recovery go smoothly as we can.

If you think that you might need a tooth extraction (or any other dental treatment), please feel free to contact us at Blue Ash Dental for further assistance. If you’re in need of a local dentist and aren’t from the Blue Ash Oh area, consider making a Google sebarch such as “West Seattle Dentists” to find a trusted practice near you.

All About Root Canal Therapy

Male dentist checking x-ray image or scan while beautiful senior woman receiving a dental treatment.

If you have heard your dentist talk about root canal therapy, there is no need to panic. The root canal is the natural cavity of the inside of the tooth. Also known as endodontic therapy, root canal therapy, is extremely beneficial when it comes to saving teeth and reducing any pain that you may be having. It is essentially a form of relief for a situation that can be extremely uncomfortable for your mouth. Your dentist is dedicated to ensuring that your teeth are as healthy as possible, and therefore, he or she will let you know if root canal therapy is necessary at any time. In this blog, we will take a look at the process of having root canal therapy, as well as explore all aspects of root canal therapy in detail, so that you can be fully prepared when it comes time to have the procedure done.

What Exactly is Root Canal Therapy?

For those who are not aware, root canal therapy is a type of endodontic treatment in which the infected pulp in a root canal of the tooth is replaced. The pulp is a soft tissue that is located inside the tooth, beneath the enamel and the dentin. In the canal of the tooth is the nerve, which can sometimes become infected for different reasons. Root Canal Therapy may take one or two appointments to complete, and the benefits of the procedure include:

  • A restored force of biting.
  • More efficient chewing.
  • Visual appeal.
  • Elimination of pain.
  • The surrounding teeth are protected from strain or excessive wear.

Why Do I Need Root Canal Therapy?

If your dentist has told you that you need root canal therapy, you may be left wondering what the reason for the procedure is. There are a few different reasons as to why root canal therapy may be needed. These reasons include:

  • Decay has caused the tooth to become infected.
  • The decay has penetrated into the pulp of the tooth, causing pain.
  • The nerve of the tooth has become exposed due to trauma, such as breaking or chipping. Root canal pain results and the procedure is needed.

What Signs Indicate That I Need Root Canal Therapy?

There are signs to be aware of that may indicate that root canal therapy is needed. If you experience any of the following, make an appointment with your dentist as soon as possible.

  • The gums become tender, painful, or swollen.
  • You notice that a tooth has become dark in color as compared to the rest of the teeth.
  • You experience severe pain during eating.
  • Your teeth and gums are sensitive to extremely hot or cold temperatures that tend to linger.
  • There is a small bump on the gums which accompanies the extreme pain.

Cases such as these may indicate a problem that is severe enough to require a root canal. Your dentist can advise as to if this is the best course of treatment.

endodontic treatment or root canal therapy of teeth close-up. Cleaning of the roots of the teeth and their filling. The concept of modern technology in the dental clinic (endodontic treatment of teeth close-up. Cleaning of the roots of the teeth and their filling.

What Does the Procedure Entail?

Those who are scheduled to receive the treatment are often wondering what exactly will happen during the appointment. With the available technology, root canal therapy is virtually painless, so there is no reason to be nervous or put off having the treatment done! The first thing that will happen is that you will receive an x-ray so that the dental professional can determine the severity of the infection that is causing pain. Next, a local anesthetic is given, and a rubber dam is placed around the tooth so that it stays dry. After drilling an access hole into the tooth, the dentist will then remove the decayed tissue, as well as the pulp tissue, using root canal files. The debris is cleaned using water or sodium hypochlorite. Tooth restoration, such as a crown or filling is then placed over the previously drilled hole, or a temporary filling may be used so that the infected material can drain thoroughly. The permanent filling is applied a week or so later. The procedure is then complete!

The Aftercare for Root Canal Therapy

Your dental professional will advise you of the appropriate aftercare that is required. Keep in mind that you may experience slight sensitivity for the first few days after the procedure, in which case the dentist will most likely recommend an over the counter pain reliever. Make sure that you wait until the numbness in your mouth is completely gone before you resume regular eating, and avoid eating hard foods that are difficult to chew. It is also important to limit sugary foods immediately following root canal therapy. After that, it is important to maintain a regular brushing, flossing, and rinsing routine each day to keep the teeth free from infection. Root canal therapy has a high success rate, though you must visit your dental professional as recommended to check the permanent fillings. In the days following the procedure, contact your dentist if you experience any of the following symptoms:

  • Extreme pain or sensitivity that is not responsive to medication.
  • The gums become inflamed or swollen.
  • The pain lasts longer than a few days.

What is the Cost of Root Canal Therapy?

One of the main concerns of a root canal for many people is the cost. While the cost can vary due to several factors, such as location, the severity of the infection, and which tooth is affected, patients can typically expect to pay approximately $760.00 for a front tooth to be treated, $880.00 for a premolar, and $1000.00 for a molar.

At Blue Ash Dental, we understand that everyone’s needs are unique. We will take all of the necessary steps to ensure complete comfort before, during, and after root canal therapy. We realize that some patients may have anxiety regarding the procedure, so we encourage you to share your concerns with us so that we can help you feel more at ease. We provide individualized, private, and comfortable treatment for every patient in order to maintain the excellent health of your teeth and gums. For more information, or to schedule an appointment, contact us today.

 

Create a Beautiful and Permanent Smile with Dental Implants

Concept of having strong healthy straight white teeth after Dental Implants. Close up portrait of happy with beaming smile female pensioner pointing on her perfect clear white teeth, isolated on gray background

The world of dentistry has grown to include some impressive and innovative treatments and solutions for a variety of oral health concerns. Dental implants, for example, provide you with permanent, beautiful teeth for many years to come. But what exactly is a dental implant? And how do you know if it’s right for you? We’re here with everything you need to know about dental implants, the procedure, recovery time, benefits, and how we can get you started on the road to a happier, healthier smile.

What Are Dental Implants?

A dental implant, in its simplest form, is a replacement tooth root. Implants replace the natural root of a tooth with a strong foundation that a permanent or removable tooth is then affixed to. These artificial roots are implanted directly into the jaw, where they are able to house artificial or replacement teeth and bridges. Dental implants are a permanent solution for treating all types of tooth-loss, in a variety of people.

Dentists dental prosthetic teeth, gums, roots teaching student model with titanium metal screws dental implants

Procedure and Recovery

As a well-established, safe treatment option for replacing lost teeth, dental implants are common practice for dental professionals. Your dentist will perform a series of tests and exams to ensure you are the right candidate for dental implants. After creating a personalized plan for treatment, your dentist will check the condition of the jaw to ensure implants can be safely placed within a strong foundation. When it comes time for the dental implant procedure, here’s what you can expect:

  • Your dentist will typically provide you with local anesthetics before beginning the procedure. Light sedatives or general anesthetics are typically only provided in cases that are much more complicated.
  • Quickly and simply, your dentist places the implant within the root area of the jaw, where the missing tooth resides. As a simple procedure, implants can be placed within 1 or 2 visits. They are typically made of titanium due to the metal’s resiliency and durability, and the implant acts almost a bolt that will be used to anchor your new teeth.

After your implants are placed, you may experience some general discomfort, but that typically disappears after a few days. Your dental team will provide you with specific instructions for caring for your mouth after the procedure. Once the implant is in, your jaw will need to grow and attach to the implant. This typically takes anywhere between 2-4 months, but every case is different. When your dentist finds that the implant is stable and strong in its place, artificial teeth can be placed within the implant.

Success Rates

When properly cared for, dental implants can last for many years. They require regular maintenance by your dentist and routine care in your everyday life but can last at least 5 years, with some lasting a lifetime. In fact, studies show that implants have a 98% success rate at 5 years for patients all over the country. When the rare case does occur and an implant fails to work properly, it is often due to a poor foundation in the jaw or poor oral hygiene following the implant procedure

Cost

The cost of dental implants can vary greatly, depending on a variety of factors. These factors can include whether or not it is a single tooth being replaced or several, severity or length of the procedure, materials used, the type of dental insurance you have, and more. Though the cost of implants truly varies case to case, the average cost around the country is around $3,000-$4,000, per implant. While most people opt for one or a few implants, some decide on the durability of a full-mouth replacement, which can cost anywhere between $30,000-$60,000.

Who Should Consider Dental Implants

Unlike some other dental procedures, almost anyone can get a dental implant that has lost a tooth. It is best for people who have lost one or more teeth, are over the age of 18, and have a jaw that is in healthy condition. An implant may not be placed in a person’s mouth if the jaw is not thick or strong enough to support the implant. But for those with healthy immune systems and strong jaws, implants can be used to replace one tooth or your whole mouth.

At the time of the implant procedure, it is essential that your oral health is in the best shape possible and there are no other active issues looming in your teeth and gums. People with certain conditions may be ineligible for the procedure due to the risk of complications with the implants, like those with heart disease, diabetes, and some other chronic conditions.

The Benefits of Dental Implants

There are a variety of options, treatments, and procedures to treat tooth-loss. But dental implants come with a variety of great advantages, including the following:

  • They are fused with the bone and therefore durable and permanent. They are also hard to damage or break after being placed.
  • There is less discomfort with implants than with dentures, bridges, or other options because the implant becomes a part of you.
  • They look and feel just like your natural teeth, so some may never know you’ve had dental work done.
  • The procedure is generally simple and easy, with little pain and recovery time.
  • Eating, chewing, and talking is possible without the pain or discomfort of dentures, bridges, crowns, etc.
  • They can benefit your overall oral health. Implants do not require the treatment of any surrounding tooth or gum area, so there is little risk to any other area of your oral wellness.
  • They are permanent but also convenient for those who must remove bridges or dentures from their mouths and require no extra maintenance, like glues or adhesives.

 

At Blue Ash Dental, we strive to provide each and every one of our patients with the best in permanent, oral health solutions. As experts in dental implants, we can help create a personalized and permanent solution for your tooth loss. For more on how dental implants could benefit you, contact our office to schedule your appointment today. If you’re inspired by smiles, you may want to check out these powerful smiles throughout history.