If your teeth are uncomfortable, or painful, when biting down, you should see a dentist as soon as possible.
When we talk about having sensitive teeth, we usually mean sensitivity to both hot and cold temperatures when we eat or drink. This type of sensitivity is often caused by an erosion of the enamel surface on the teeth. This can be prevented with better general dental care and an altered diet, albeit those already affected can have various treatments including special toothpastes and even dental veneers to help.
This is not the only type of sensitive teeth that we see at our Ashby and Swadlincote dental practice though. Although less common, some people find that their teeth are prone to sensitivity when they bite down on them, even when eating. This can range from merely a little uncomfortable, to downright painful. Whatever the level of discomfort though, you should have this checked by one of the team at Alexandra Dental Care as soon as you can.
Causes of teeth that are sensitive to pressure
There are a number of potential issues that can lead to this problem and this is why it is important to have it professionally evaluated. Your dentist will be able to diagnose the cause of the problem and treat it accordingly.
One of the most likely causes of this type of discomfort is that you may have a broken tooth. This may not be obvious, and the tooth may even look complete when you look at it in the mirror. Even a small crack though, can cause a tooth to become sensitive when pressure is applied. This discomfort is only likely to get worse if the tooth is not treated.
Depending on the nature of the break, a filling or a dental crown are likely treatments which will restore the tooth and eliminate any associated discomfort.
Loose or cracked fillings
Helping you to avoid that ‘long in the tooth’ look
If you have ever wondered why some older people are referred to as being ‘long in the tooth’, there is a good reason for it. Receding gums are more common in older people and it is almost certain that in the past, the level of preventative dental care now available, simply wasn’t there. In effect then, it isn’t that your teeth are growing longer, but more of them are showing as the gums recede.
At Alexandra Dental Care, we believe in helping all of our Ashby patients to prevent dental problems, rather than just treating them (although we do that too of course!). So, if you want to do all that you can to prevent your gums from receding, please read on.
One of the most common reasons for receding gums is gum disease. It is one of the symptoms often associated with this oral health problem. With good care though, it should be straightforward to avoid. Make sure to brush and floss your teeth and gums daily, and also have a professional clean every six months with our dental hygienist.
Unfortunately, one the things that can cause receding gums is your family genes. In this instance, there is probably little that you can do. However, you should still look after your oral health to keep any recession to the bare minimum.
Looking (and smelling) your best for this romantic occasion!
Whilst those who are happily single may be relieved that they won’t have to put any effort into Valentine’s day, many of those in relationships will be looking to book restaurants etc to celebrate the day with their partner. Although the real St Valentine was allegedly beheaded, with a little effort we are sure that for most, it will be a happy occasion!
Romance, of course, involves intimacy and closeness, and any issues such as bad breath are going to be a real turn off on the night. It is not too late though, for our Ashby and Swadlincote patients to make sure that their oral health is in tip top shape before the big day.
Get rid of smelly breath
Probably the biggest romantic turn off is poor hygiene and bad breath. Poor general hygiene we can’t really help you with, but bad breath can be addressed using the services of our dental team.
The first thing that we should say is not to rely on the use of breath fresheners. Whilst these may offer some benefit in an emergency situation, they really aren’t the solution to the problem. At best, they will mask the smell whilst completely ignoring the underlying problem. If your breath is normally OK, then, providing that you don’t eat or drink anything that is well known to cause bad breath, such as garlic, you should be all good to go for the big day. If you find that bad breath is persistent though, we recommend that you arrange to see the hygienist at Alexandra Dental Care as soon as possible.
If you have persistent bad breath, it is very possibe that is is caused by gum disease. This is a problematic disease that can lead to tooth loss if not treated. We won’t go into that aspect of it today though, but look, instead, at its relationship with halitosis.
Our Swadlincote and Ashby cosmetic dentists discuss why DIY teeth whitening is never a good idea.
The internet is a fantastic thing. It allows us to keep up to date with the latest news, minute by minute. It also allows us to contact someone across the other side of the world in just a few seconds. It does have its drawbacks though, and the fact that anyone can post on the internet also allows people to do just that. The rise of ‘fake news’ shows that this approach can lead to outright lies being accepted as facts in some cases.
Even dental care can suffer from this fake news, or perhaps, being more generous, misguided information. There is a lot of good information available about how to look after your teeth and gums, but also a lot of information that could prove to be positively harmful.
Don’t look for ‘shortcuts’
Patients will usually contact Alexandra Dental Care for an appointment when they are in pain, or have done something such as broken a tooth, as they know that these problems are best left to a qualified dentist. Few people would try to remove decay and fill a tooth themselves, for example. The story isn’t always the same though when it comes to cosmetic appearance.
Perhaps the name ‘cosmetic’ makes it seem as though any treatment carried out with this intention would be harmless; but of course this is not the case when done incorrectly. Our teeth are not just a solid block of enamel and contain living cells and nerves, and even treatments intended to improve the appearance of your teeth can have an adverse effect if done incorrectly and by the unskilled.
DIY cosmetic dentistry
Examining the non surgical aspect of dental care provision
To become a dentist takes many years of intense training. We learn not only the basics about oral health, but also micro examine procedures and all other aspects of dental care. For those who wish to add even more advanced techniques to their practice, such as the placing of dental implants, further study is required, often taking several years.
All of the surgical team at Alexandra Dental Care have undergone this training and are highly proficient in their skills. Being able to perform complicated procedures is essential for this line of work in order to ensure the best possible outcome for the patient, but it isn’t the only essential thing.
A caring profession
We know and understand, that many, perhaps most, of our patients do not enjoy going to see the dentist. Getting patients to attend on a regular basis is a big part of the challenge for any dental practice and ours is no different. A good practice will look at ways in which they can encourage people to do this and also, especially for very nervous patients, encourage them to go ahead with any necessary treatment.
So, as dentists, we know we have the necessary skills for the procedures that we need to carry out, but a question that we have to continually ask ourselves is how to keep our patients as happy and positive about their care as possible.
Our Ashby and Swadlincote team takes a look at New Year dental opportunities.
So, Christmas has been and gone, and some of the luckier ones will have just returned to work after a nice relaxing break. This time of the year though is often also one where we both reflect and look forward, often making new year resolutions. These resolutions, if carried through, can be of significant benefit to us and may include losing weight or getting fitter, both of which are likely to have health benefits. As most of us probably know though, too few of us actually manage to achieve what we had hoped to do.
One of the reasons for this ‘failure’ is that we all too often depend on our own willpower, which may be lacking at times. Resolutions that are carried out with the aid of professional help though, have a much better chance of being carried through, as we are not relying on our willpower alone.
And this is where we come in….
Help and advice
It isn’t uncommon to hear patients tell us that they had intended to look after their teeth better, when they come to us with a toothache in the latter part of the year. The reality is that taking care of your teeth and gums isn’t that difficult, but it does require persistence. Many problems may also start off very small and almost unnoticeable; being almost invisible to the patient until such a time that the problems becomes significant, and sometimes painful too.
It is for this reason that we always recommend that patients of Alexandra Dental Care, pay us a visit for a check up at least twice a year. Any small amounts of decay, that may not yet be causing discomfort, can be removed and replaced using a small filling. Our dental hygienists are also available for regular appointments and we invite you to take advantage of this too. Not only will this enable the removal of tartar from the teeth and gum line, but also affords you the opportunity to discuss and improve your own oral health care.
Considering your smile
As patients of our Swadlincote and Ashby dental practice will be aware, we don’t only deal with problems like decay and gum disease, but are also pleased to provide an extensive range of cosmetic dental procedures. Whilst some treatments that fall into this category can also be used for restoration purposes; crowns and dental implants for example, these treatments also offer an excellent opportunity to improve your smile.
Your 2019 smile makeover
A little seasonal fun for our Ashby and Burton patients.
After writing our dental blogs for the year, and with this one probably being the last one before the Christmas break, we thought it would be fun to see how well you have read our posts and how much of it you can remember. With this in mind, we offer a few questions on subjects that we have covered and you can find the answers at the bottom of the page. Let’s go….
- What material are dental implants made of?
- What type of filling is used during a root canal procedure?
- What is the best time to ring us for an emergency dental appointment?
- Name a common cause of persistent bad breath/halitosis
- Name the orthodontic system that uses trays that fit over the teeth, rather than using a ‘wires and brackets’ approach
- What are the ‘social six’ teeth?
- Name the 2 main stages of gum disease
- Name the treatment routinely carried out by the dental hygienist
- Name the two common treatments that can be provided to reduce lines and wrinkles on your face
- And finally …. name the sport that Yogi is more than highly competent in!
The onset of winter can be a painful time for some people.
Perhaps, as a nation, we are a little obsessed with the weather. When it’s too hot we complain and likewise, when it is too cold. For some people though, the biting winds and winter chills affects not only their general temperature, but can also lead to discomfort due to them having sensitive teeth.
The odd occurrence of a sensitive tooth may simply mean that whatever you are eating is much too cold. If the sensitivity is persistent though, whether when eating or just breathing in cold air, it is likely that you have a dental problem that needs attention.
What causes sensitive teeth?
There can be a number of potential causes of teeth sensitivity. Some of these occur as a one off event and are logical, such as following a filling when the treated tooth may be a little sensitive as the anaesthetic wears off. This should not be long lasting though, and, if it is still there a couple of days later, you will need to contact the dentist again to have it checked.
For those who have more persistent tooth sensitivity though, there are a number of potential causes which we list below.
This is one of the most common causes of sensitive teeth. If we do not take care to protect the enamel on our teeth, it can weaken and thin, exposing the dentin layer beneath it. This layer is porous and therefore allows the extremes of temperatures to affect the nerves within the root canals. Common causes of worn enamel include a diet high in acids, with sugary and energy drinks being a particular culprit. Brushing your teeth too hard will also wear down the enamel of your teeth, especially if you do so too soon after eating, when the enamel is soft.
Tooth decay and other damage
The dentin area of the tooth can also be accessed when the exterior enamel is damaged in other ways. Tooth decay will almost certainly lead to heightened sensitivity, as might a leaky dental filling or a broken or cracked tooth. Regular dental visits and good home care should help keep this risk to a minimum.
Winter is only just here, but now is the time to plan your straighter smile for 2019.
After the long hot summer, some of us may be a little relieved at the cooler weather ahead of us for the next few months. The novelty of this often wears off quite quickly though, and many of us will already be looking forward to the arrival of spring next year. Spring is a time when we often renew aspects of our lives, and particularly the way that we look, with new clothes and a generally brighter appearance.
Cosmetic dentistry can play a part in this too, and some treatments, such as teeth whitening, are especially popular around this time of year. This treatment, can be completed at any time with almost instant results. Other cosmetic dental issues though may take a little longer to resolve and hence need some degree of forward planning.
Crooked front teeth
If you have front teeth that are crooked, you will know how this can distract from an otherwise attractive smile. The nature of this problem though means that it can’t simply be resolved with a one off visit to our dental practice near Ashby. To straighten teeth too quickly could cause damage to them and also the bone holding them in place. Many orthodontic treatments can take a year or more to correct the positioning of the teeth, particularly for complex cases; some types though, are aimed specifically at minor improvements and consequently work more quickly.
One of the best known braces systems that is designed to correct the positioning of the ‘social six’ teeth is the Six Month Smiles orthodontic method. This uses the traditional method of wires and brackets to reposition your teeth, albeit the materials used are more refined than those used in standard dental braces and are also tooth coloured, making them more discreet.
Restoration options for patients whose teeth are in very poor condition.
The health and general condition of our teeth and gums depends on a number of factors. These include whether we have looked after them or neglected them, whether we have seen a dentist on a regular basis as well as our age and general health, which can also be factors. Whatever the reason, it is fair to say that some of us will be unhappy with the state of our teeth and may feel that it is already too late to do anything significant to improve them.
At Alexandra Dental Care, we believe that there is no ‘point of no return’ where a patient will have to live with poor quality teeth that make it difficult to eat, or make them reluctant to smile or laugh out loud because of their poor condition. Modern dentistry now offers many procedures that can restore your teeth to good health and also improve the way that they look.
Get them checked
The chances are that if your teeth are in a poor state of health, you won’t have seen a dentist for some time. This is the first step that you should take. If you live in the Ashby or Swadlincote area, giving us a call on 01283 216347 is a great place to start. We will arrange an initial consultation with you to assess the health of your teeth and gums and discuss a suitable treatment plan.
What treatments you undergo will obviously depend on what is needed to restore your teeth. We will advise procedures that we feel are necessary, as well as some which we feel would be beneficial from an aesthetic viewpoint if you want to have the best looking smile possible. These ‘cosmetic’ treatments may include the likes of modern orthodontics such as Invisalign, along with teeth whitening to bring out the whiteness of your new smile. You will not be ‘pressured’ into having these treatments though and they are purely a beneficial option.
For the purpose of this blog, we will take a look at some possible treatments that could be used to restore your teeth, rather than to specifically improve their appearance.
Gum disease treatment