By Carey & Aylward, DDS, PC
March 30, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
TomHanksAbscessedToothGetsCastAway

Did you see the move Cast Away starring Tom Hanks? If so, you probably remember the scene where Hanks, stranded on a remote island, knocks out his own abscessed tooth — with an ice skate, no less — to stop the pain. Recently, Dear Doctor TV interviewed Gary Archer, the dental technician who created that special effect and many others.

“They wanted to have an abscess above the tooth with all sorts of gunk and pus and stuff coming out of it,” Archer explained. “I met with Tom and I took impressions [of his mouth] and we came up with this wonderful little piece. It just slipped over his own natural teeth.” The actor could flick it out with his lower tooth when the time was right during the scene. It ended up looking so real that, as Archer said, “it was not for the easily squeamish!”

That’s for sure. But neither is a real abscess, which is an infection that becomes sealed off beneath the gum line. An abscess may result from a trapped piece of food, uncontrolled periodontal (gum) disease, or even an infection deep inside a tooth that has spread to adjacent periodontal tissues. In any case, the condition can cause intense pain due to the pressure that builds up in the pus-filled sac. Prompt treatment is required to relieve the pain, keep the infection from spreading to other areas of the face (or even elsewhere in the body), and prevent tooth loss.

Treatment involves draining the abscess, which usually stops the pain immediately, and then controlling the infection and removing its cause. This may require antibiotics and any of several in-office dental procedures, including gum surgery, a root canal, or a tooth extraction. But if you do have a tooth that can’t be saved, we promise we won’t remove it with an ice skate!

The best way to prevent an abscess from forming in the first place is to practice conscientious oral hygiene. By brushing your teeth twice each day for two minutes, and flossing at least once a day, you will go a long way towards keeping harmful oral bacteria from thriving in your mouth.

If you have any questions about gum disease or abscesses, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can learn more by reading the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Periodontal (Gum) Abscesses” and “Confusing Tooth Pain.”

By Carey & Aylward, DDS, PC
March 15, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: dentures  

Boost the health and appearance of your smile by getting dentures in Westland, MI.

Looking for a quick and easy way to replace your missing teeth and regain a healthy smile again? Then look no further then your DenturesWestland, MI dentist. With dentures, we not only give you a smile that can restore chewing and speaking but also puts confidence back in your appearance. Find out more about what getting dentures entails and the benefits it offers.

What are dentures?

Dentures are oral appliances that are designed to replace all or most of your missing permanent teeth. Dentures can either be cemented into place or removable, depending on how many teeth you need to replace. Partial fixed dentures are also referred to as dental bridges and can replace one or more missing teeth. Full dentures replace all teeth and can be worn all-day and removed at night before bed.

What are the benefits of dentures?

Dentures can offer a variety of benefits for those looking to replace some or all of their teeth:

Renewed confidence: When you are dealing with a gapping smile it can certainly take a toll on your self-esteem. Luckily, when you get a full smile with dentures you can enjoy a complete, confidence smile once again.

Restored chewing and speaking: With missing teeth both chewing and speaking are significantly affected. Luckily, dentures can restore both of these functions to make talking with friends and enjoying meals easier.

Improved appearance: While missing teeth can wreak havoc on your oral health it can also affect your physical appearance. Even though this may not seem like the most important benefit overall making sure that your oral health doesn’t suffer, a healthy smile will significantly boost your overall appearance.

Inexpensive dental treatment: Many patients are looking to get a healthy smile on a budget and while other dental options may offer better benefits they can be more complicated and more expensive. For those looking for a cheaper way to restore their smile, nothing is better than dentures. Furthermore, you can get dentures from your Westland, MI dentist more quickly than other options.

Ready to get a brand new smile? Then schedule a consultation with your Westland, MI dentist and let Carey & Aylward give you the smile you deserve. Dentures can give you the smile you want.

FindoutWhatKindofToothStainingyouHaveBeforeSeekingaSolution

Stained teeth can be embarrassing — so much so you may even hesitate to smile. Before you seek out a whitening solution, though, there are a few things you need to know about tooth staining.

Tooth staining is more complex than you might think. There are actually two types: extrinsic, staining from foods and other substances of the outer surface of the enamel; and intrinsic, discoloration deep within a tooth that affects their outward appearance. The latter staining has a number of causes, including the type of dental materials used to fill a tooth, a history of trauma or the use of the antibiotic tetracycline during early tooth development.

There are some noticeable differences between the two types, although an examination is usually necessary to determine which you have. Extrinsic staining tends to be brown, black, or gray, or occasionally green, orange or yellow. Intrinsic staining can be red, pink or, if caused by tetracycline and fluoresced under ultraviolet light, yellow. If only one tooth is discolored it’s most likely intrinsic due to decay in the tooth pulp.

What can be done also depends on which type. Extrinsic staining can be modified through whitening, with either an office application or a home kit (there are differences, so you should consult with us before you decide). It may also be essential to modify your diet by restricting foods and beverages (coffee, wine or tea) known to cause staining and by eliminating tobacco use. You should also practice daily hygiene, including brushing with a toothpaste designed to diminish staining, and regular office cleaning and polishing.

Intrinsic staining can’t be addressed by these methods. Instead, you may need to undergo a procedure where we enter the interior of the tooth and insert a bleaching agent. If this isn’t an option, you can also choose a cosmetic restoration such as a porcelain veneer or crown that will cover the tooth to better match the color of your other teeth.

Dealing with stained teeth begins with a visit to our office to determine what type of discoloration you have and to learn your options. But regardless of what type you have, there is a way to a brighter smile.

If you would like more information on the causes and treatments of tooth staining, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Tooth Staining.”

By Carey & Aylward, DDS, PC
February 29, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: celebrity smiles   crowns  
DentalCrownsfortheKingofMagic

You might think David Copperfield leads a charmed life:  He can escape from ropes, chains, and prison cells, make a Learjet or a railroad car disappear, and even appear to fly above the stage. But the illustrious illusionist will be the first to admit that making all that magic takes a lot of hard work. And he recently told Dear Doctor magazine that his brilliant smile has benefitted from plenty of behind-the-scenes dental work as well.

“When I was a kid, I had every kind of [treatment]. I had braces, I had headgear, I had rubber bands, and a retainer afterward,” Copperfield said. And then, just when his orthodontic treatment was finally complete, disaster struck. “I was at a mall, running down this concrete alleyway, and there was a little ledge… and I went BOOM!”

Copperfield’s two front teeth were badly injured by the impact. “My front teeth became nice little points,” he said. Yet, although they had lost a great deal of their structure, his dentist was able to restore those damaged teeth in a very natural-looking way. What kind of “magic” did the dentist use?

In Copperfield’s case, the teeth were repaired using crown restorations. Crowns (also called caps) are suitable when a tooth has lost part of its visible structure, but still has healthy roots beneath the gum line. To perform a crown restoration, the first step is to make a precise model of your teeth, often called an impression. This allows a replacement for the visible part of the tooth to be fabricated, and ensures it will fit precisely into your smile. In its exact shape and shade, a well-made crown matches your natural teeth so well that it’s virtually impossible to tell them apart. Subsequently, the crown restoration is permanently attached to the damaged tooth.

There’s a blend of technology and art in making high quality crowns — just as there is in some stage-crafted illusions. But the difference is that the replacement tooth is not just an illusion: It looks, functions and “feels” like your natural teeth… and with proper care it can last for many years to come.  Besides crowns, there are several other types of tooth restorations that are suitable in different situations. We can recommend the right kind of “magic” for you.

If you would like more information about crowns, 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 “Crowns & Bridgework” and “Porcelain Crowns & Veneers.”

By Carey & Aylward, DDS, PC
February 26, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: dental filling  

If you have ever had dental work done to your teeth, you are probably familiar with a dental filling. As one of the most common dental procedures, a filling removes decay from the tooth before it reaches the tooth’s inner chamber, preventing infection of the tooth’s pulp dental fillingsand nerve. But is there any chance of decay after a tooth has been filled? Find out with help from your Westland, MI dentist at Carey & Aylward Dental.

What is a dental filling? 
When decay forms on a tooth, it eats away at the tooth’s outer enamel. However, cavities do not always hurt. A toothache only occurs when decay eats far enough into the tooth to infect or damage its inner pulp and nerve. The resulting infected pulp and nerve require root canal therapy, where the pulp and nerve are removed from the inside of the tooth altogether. When the decay is still at the outer layers, your Westland dentist removes it with a dental filling, leaving the pulp and nerve in tact.

Do I have to worry about cavities after a filling? 
Yes. Just because a tooth has been filled does not mean that decay cannot still form afterward. Tooth decay starts from the outside, with bacteria turning into plaque, a sticky substance which sticks to your teeth. If this plaque is not brushed away, it turns to decay-causing tartar. This is what makes brushing and flossing twice a day so important to the health of your teeth.

What can I expect from the procedure for a dental filling? 
A dental filling is a fast and easy procedure which usually takes around 30 minutes. First, your dentist numbs the area of the tooth. Then, he or she removes the decay using a dental drill. Thanks to the local anesthetic, this is painless. A filling material fills the hole made by the drill. The filling is then shaped to fit your bite correctly and checked using transfer paper. If the filling is too large to stand up to everyday activities on its own, your dentist may recommend a dental crown to strengthen it.

For more information on dental fillings and cavities, or to speak with an associate about scheduling an examination or cleaning, please contact Dr. Dennis E. Aylward, Dr. Brent L. Carey and Dr. Allison A. Carey at Carey & Aylward Dental in Westland, MI. Call (734) 425-9130 to schedule your appointment today!





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