Posts for: November, 2014

By Carey & Aylward, DDS, PC
November 20, 2014
Category: Dental Procedures
If you have severely damaged teeth or tooth loss, you’re probably searching for a solution. If removable options like dentures just don’t sound like something you’re looking for, then it’s time to consider your fixed prosthetic options in Westlake, like crowns and bridges. Unlike dentures, both crowns and bridges are cemented onto natural teeth or implants to repair your smile.

What is a crown?

Sometimes referred to as a “cap”, a crown is a tooth-like cover that goes over the top part of your tooth to restore function and improve aesthetics. Both porcelain and ceramic crowns are matched to the rest of your teeth to give you a natural-looking smile.
 

What are dental bridges?

Dental BridgeIf you are missing one or moreteeth, your Westlake dentist may recommend getting a dental bridge. Just as the name suggests, this oral device bridges the gap that is left by a missing tooth. The bridge is cemented either to your real teeth or the implants that are adjacent to the gap. These neighboring teeth act as an anchor for the bridge. A dental crown is also attached to the middle of the bridge to take the place of the missing tooth.

When may I need a crown?

There are several factors that could lead your Westlake dentist to recommend getting a dental crown:
  • Dental CrownTo protect a weakened tooth
  • To hide severely misshapen or discolored teeth
  • Repair a dental fracture
  • To use in a dental bridge
  • To go on top of a dental implant
  • To cover a tooth after root canal therapy
 

What should I expect when getting my dental crown and bridge?

Before these prosthetics are cemented, your teeth need to be reduced so that they can properly go over your smile. After we reduce the size of your tooth or teeth, we will then take impressions of your smile to create a mold from which to create your crown or bridge.
 
Then a dental lab will fabricate your device based on our specifications. In the mean time we will fit you with a temporary crown or bridge until you can get your permanent one. Once your crown or bridge is ready, we will remove the temporary one and replace it with the new one.
 

Call Carey & Aylward, DDS, PC Today!

If you’re tired of unsightly stains or if your Westlake dentist has recommended root canal therapy, then it’s time to consider how a dental crown could improve your smile. Call us today to find out more or to schedule your next appointment.

By Carey & Aylward, DDS, PC
November 19, 2014
Category: Oral Health
Tags: oral health   xylitol  
Dental-FriendlyChewingGumcanbeBeneficialtoYourOralHealth

Chewing gum, so much a part of modern culture, actually has ancient roots — humans have been chewing some form of it for thousands of years. While gum chewing is a benign habit for the most part, it does raise some dental health concerns.

The good news for jaw function is that chewing gum is unlikely to cause any long-term problems for your joints if you respond to your body’s warning signals. Our joints, muscles and associated nerves have a built-in mechanism of fatigue and pain signaling to help us avoid overuse. Furthermore, the action of chewing stimulates the production and release of saliva. Among saliva’s many beneficial properties is its ability to neutralize acid, which can soften and erode tooth enamel. It also strengthens enamel by restoring some of the calcium and other minerals lost from acid.

That doesn’t mean, however, that the physical act of chewing gum isn’t without risks. Chewing gum “exercises” your jaw muscles and makes them stronger, so they’re able to deliver more force to your teeth. This could lead to future tooth mobility and excessive wear. It’s important then that you don’t chew gum excessively to avoid this kind of damage to your teeth.

Unfortunately, there’s more bad news involving a key ingredient in many brands. Many manufacturers use sugar (sucrose) to sweeten their product, which is a major part of its appeal. Sugar, however, is a prime food source for oral bacteria responsible for tooth decay. The prolonged presence of sugar in the mouth when we chew gum can negate the beneficial effects of increased saliva.

A sweetener called xylitol, though, could be the answer to “having your gum and chewing it too.” This alcohol-based sugar (which, by the way, has almost half the calories of table sugar) has the opposite effect on bacteria — rather than becoming a food source it actually inhibits bacterial growth. Studies have even shown that products like chewing gum, mints or candy sweetened with xylitol can contribute significantly to a reduction in dental caries (cavities) caused by decay.

The better news: you don’t have to give up chewing gum for the sake of your teeth — just be sure to choose products with dental-friendly ingredients and don’t chew excessively. You’ll not only reduce the risks of tooth decay and damage, you’ll also promote a healthier environment in your mouth.

If you would like more information on chewing gum and its effects on dental health, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Chewing Gum” and “Xylitol in Chewing Gum.”


By Carey & Aylward, DDS, PC
November 04, 2014
Category: Oral Health
HowDentistrySavedKathyIrelandsSmile

It is not often that you find a celebrity who is willing to speak candidly about any cosmetic or restorative dentistry that he or she has had. Instead, most prefer that their fans just assume that their dazzling “Hollywood” smile is something that just happened naturally. However, that is not the case with Kathy Ireland, the former Sports Illustrated cover girl, current business mogul and founder of kathy ireland Worldwide, a billion dollar marketing and design firm. In a Dear Doctor magazine cover story she talks openly about her dental experiences, injuries and treatment so that people worldwide can understand what may be possible for them.

For Kathy, it happened several years ago when she was playing with her husband and children in their driveway. Kathy decided that she would stand in her children's wagon and surf across their driveway. Instead, she ended up “face-planting,” as she describes it, in a freak accident that left her with a broken nose, split forehead and several broken teeth. She recalls that it sounded like a watermelon had smashed. Luckily, her husband, an emergency room physician, was on hand to care for her. Kathy is just as thankful to her cosmetic and restorative dentist who restored her trademark smile with some veneers and a dental implant. Today, the only reminder she has from this accident is a small scar on her nose that she covers with a little makeup.

You would think that this accident would be enough trauma for one person; however, Kathy describes an earlier accident where she knocked out a tooth and then later knocked it loose again. Kathy also wanted to take the time to let readers know that her dental implant experiences were “pretty easy.” She did recall, “hearing all the sounds while all of it was going on” and then added, “but I have to tell you, that after being a mom and having kids, going to the dentist...is like going to the spa!” She said that she has even fallen asleep in the dental chair.

To learn more about Kathy Ireland, continue reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Kathy Ireland.” Or if you think cosmetic or restorative dentistry is right for you, contact us today to schedule an appointment to discuss your specific goals.