Why does my tooth hurt?
The average person will suffer from mild to extreme toothaches several times during his or her lifetime. The severity or pain level usually depends on the cause behind a toothache.
If you’re thinking “Why does my tooth hurt?” every now and then, a trusted Sterling Heights dentist shares some possible reasons below:
The most common cause of toothaches is tooth decay. However, for the tooth and the surrounding area to really hurt, the decay in the tooth would have to be significant enough that it has already reached the inner layer of the tooth — the dentin. Once the dentin is damaged, the tooth becomes highly sensitive and a cavity has already developed.
Tooth abscess or infection
If a cavity has already affected the root beneath the visible tooth, the root and the surrounding tissue will soon become infected. This, in turn, can cause a pulsating and unbearable pain. This is a dental issue that needs to be dealt with professionally as soon as possible since not only is it extremely painful, but it can also result in bone and tissue loss.
If you feel a sharp tooth pain during or after eating or drinking something cold or hot, the pain is usually connected to tooth sensitivity. Tooth sensitivity usually means that your tooth enamel has worn down and your tooth’s dentin (the layer where the tooth’s nerves are) is exposed. This dental issue can also be caused by a recent teeth whitening procedure. To reduce this level of sensitivity, you can try using toothpaste made for sensitive teeth. You can also consult your dentist for other possible remedies.
Damaged or dislodged dental fillings or sealants which can expose the sensitive part of your tooth to temperatures, food and drinks can create sharp pains. Your dentist can immediately repair or replace the dental filling or sealant so that you can be free of pain quickly.
Dental trauma or fracture
If you injure, fracture, crack or chip a tooth because of a sports injury, accident, or from biting a really hard object, you will feel an intense toothache. If the pain is intolerable, this usually means that the fracture or damage has made its way to the middle of the tooth where the nerve endings are. Recommended treatments for this painful oral issue include dental fillings and dental crowns.
Growing wisdom teeth
When your wisdom teeth are starting to erupt or if they have already crowned, they can cause teeth misalignment and push against the other teeth. This typically places pressure on your jaws and gums which causes the pain. Extracting the wisdom teeth and other orthodontic treatments will provide you relief from the pain.
Lastly, if you suffer from sinuses, regular nasal congestion and tenderness in your upper jaw can also cause toothaches. Your dentist and medical practitioner will have to work together to find the most suitable remedy for this problem.
Even if the pain you are feeling is bearable and often comes and goes, it is best to consult your dentist immediately. There may be some underlying and more severe dental issues behind the pain and your dentist is the best person to detect and treat them.
September is the National Gum Care Month!
Now is the time to educate yourself about the early signs of gum disease and review the different habits that can help keep your mouth clean and healthy.
Early Signs of Gum Disease
- Gums are swollen and red in certain places
- Gums bleed easily when brushing
- Gums feel tender
- Gums have begun to pull away from the edges of the teeth
Gingivitis is initially painless. It takes time to develop into a noticeable problem. You can prevent gum disease with basic and simple oral hygiene measures.
5 Ways to Prevent Gum Disease
1. Brush at least twice a day
The sticky plaque will build up on your teeth continuously. If it is left there for hours, it will develop into tartar. Both plaque and tartar can contribute to gum disease.
2. Don’t forget to floss
Floss every day. Although brushing can prevent plaque from building up on your teeth, flossing will keep the area below the gum line clean and healthy.
You can use a water irrigator or a dental water jet. This is a device that can shoot streams of water between your teeth in order to completely remove bacteria and plaque.
3. Use mouthwash
Mouthwash should not be a substitute for brushing and flossing. However, if this is used along with other healthy oral care habits, it can eliminate bacteria. Also, it can keep your breath fresh and your teeth strong.
4. Eat nutritious meals
A healthy and balanced diet that is rich in nutrients and vitamins but low in sugar will boost your immune system. Also, this will help your body fight against harmful bacteria, infection, and inflammation. Eat greens to keep your teeth white.
5. Visit your dentist regularly
You must see your dentist twice a year for a good cleaning. During your visit, your dentist will also assess the health of your gums and teeth. If you are experiencing any problems, he will refer you to a reputable periodontist.
Early prevention and treatment of gum disease are crucial. When left unchecked and untreated, it can destroy your gums, teeth, connective tissues, and bones. Most importantly, this can greatly contribute to various health problems. So make sure to keep all of these activities as part of your day-to-day oral care regimen to keep gum diseases at bay.
If you are concerned about your oral health, schedule an appointment with a reputable Sterling Heights dentist now.
8 Fun Facts About the History of Digital Dental X Rays
Growing up, you may have been taught that exposure to any form of radiation is harmful for human beings. In history books and on the news, you have likely seen its horrifying effects on people. Radiation can affect the body in a number of ways, but this also depends on the amount you are exposed to. In small doses, radiation has been used in medicine to detect and treat a host of ailments, from hyperthyroidism to cancer.
Radiation can be found in a wide range of medical and dental tools, and X-rays are one of them. Learn more about x-rays and the good side of radiation with these interesting facts about digital dental x rays.
- Radiation can be found all us — in the air we breathe as well as on the walls, floors and ceilings made of cement, stone or bricks. It is also emitted by a number of devices including watches, TV sets and computers. Human beings have been exposed to radiation since before they were born. When talking about exposure, the amount of radiation should also be considered.
- People are exposed to radiation on a daily basis. Even the amount of radiation you are exposed to when going about your day is several times higher than what you would get during a typical x-ray session. To put it into perspective, the amount of radiation a person is exposed to on a daily basis is the equivalent of taking 950 digital x-rays.
- Using natural gas to cook food produces more radiation than making a dental x-ray.
- X-rays have been around for more than a century. They were first discovered in 1895, the same year the first dental x-ray images were produced.
- Machines have evolved over the years. Today’s machines are smaller, faster, more efficient and safer to use. Newer sensor-based machines use about a tenth the amount of radiation that the traditional film-based machines did.
- X-ray images show what your teeth, bone and supporting tissues look like on the inside. Dentists use them to find cavities, look at the roots of each tooth, and see if you have any oral health issues.
- Radiation safety measures emphasize the importance of using ALARA — As Low As Reasonably Achievable levels when taking dental x-rays.
- Because images are now in digital form, it has become easier for medical and dental personnel to share images and collaborate on what treatment to use.
You can learn more about radiation and its benefits from your Sterling Heights dentist.
Call us today to schedule an appointment with one of our dentists.
What White Spots On Teeth Mean
Everyone wants to have white teeth. They are some of the best natural accessories you can present to the people around you to feel more confident. Because of this, many often visit their dentist to undergo teeth whitening treatments, or decide to pick the DIY option.
White spots on teeth, however, can have a different effect on a person’s smile. If they are numerous, they become too unappealing and will have a negative impact on your smile. Aside from this, though, most of the time these spots shouldn’t really be a cause for concern.
Discovering the cause behind the white spots on your teeth is a good step to know if you should start worrying about this dental issue or not. A dentist in Sterling Heights explains the usual causes of white spots on teeth below:
- Flourisis. This is a dental condition common among children which damages the tooth’s enamel due to excessive intake of fluoride before their teeth are fully developed. People who often drink water with high fluoride content are also prone to getting white spots on their teeth.
- Decalcification. In certain cases, white spots can also be a sign that a cavity or tooth decay is beginning. The spots will appear where the tooth is weaker, usually toward the bottom of your tooth where your gums are. If you are particularly fond of eating and drinking sugary and acidic food or beverages, your teeth will more likely develop these white spots due to mineral loss. Decalcification is also known as plaque buildup.
- Plaque buildup. Failing to make sure your teeth is completely clean, particularly before going to sleep, can cause hard, scaly spots to appear near the gum line. They can appear as spots and will cause your teeth to look more discolored.
- Brace removal. Lastly, some persons with orthodontic braces usually have trouble properly brushing their teeth. Because of this, it is highly likely that there was a plaque build-up which can now be easily seen after having their braces removed. In this instance, the white spots have already developed or will turn into cavities.
A visit to your dentist can help you determine the cause behind the white spots on your teeth. Once this has been identified, your dentist will recommend the best treatment option.
If the spots are plaque, you will have to undergo oral prophylaxis. Bleaching and fluoride treatments are usually the first procedures a dentist will recommend if a less invasive option would be sufficient. For more difficult cases, an air abrasion procedure may be needed. Under this treatment option, the dentist will use a device that blows crystal particles toward the calcium deposit. Because of the high speed or force, the calcium deposit will be removed from the teeth without causing any damage.
If air abrasion still doesn’t work or the spots are too big, you may need fillings to cover them. A dentist can also recommend dental veneers or caps to cover up the spots.
Practicing good oral hygiene also plays an important role in preventing the appearance of white spots. Regular brushing and flossing will help you avoid plaque and cavity buildup. It is also important to visit your dentist every six months so that any possible dental issues can be checked, diagnosed, and treated immediately. Call us today to schedule an appointment!
7 Teeth Whitening Facts You Should Know
Teeth whitening is a really popular way for people to achieve a great smile. Many purchase products intended for teeth whitening such as ampoules, whitening strips, and special toothpastes. Meanwhile, others turn to natural DIY methods, such as using baking soda and salt frequently to brush their teeth and rinsing with hydrogen peroxide. And there are also folks who regularly get professional teeth whitening at the dental office.
If you’re considering whitening your teeth for the first time, perhaps to work against the discoloration you’re seeing due to some of your habits, it’s good to understand a few things about it. A dentist in Sterling Heights shares seven helpful teeth whitening facts that could help you decide whether whitening is right for you.
Two kinds of tooth discoloration
There are two kinds of tooth discoloration: intrinsic and extrinsic discoloration. Professional teeth whitening and common teeth whitening methods, such as bleaching, can only remedy extrinsic discoloration or stains on the surface of the teeth.
What is the most common type of discoloration
The most common type of extrinsic discoloration that teeth whitening treatments address is staining caused by frequent consumption of coffee, tea, colas, wine and smoking.
What is the active ingredient in whitening gel?
The active ingredient in whitening gel (used in both professional and home whitening treatments) is carbamide peroxide. When this ingredient is broken down, it allows oxygen to penetrate the enamel and bleaches the colored substances.
How can a single teeth whitening session help?
A single session of professional teeth whitening can instantly make teeth two to the shades lighter, says a Sterling Heights dentist. The same results can be achieved by using a home treatment kit, except that it will take a few days. These two options are equally effective – there’s no proof that one option can make teeth much whiter than the other.
The cost of professional teeth whitening
A professional teeth whitening treatment using laser usually costs $400 to $500. However, the location of the dental clinic affects the price of the treatment; you can expect it to be cheaper in low-income communities, and way higher in affluent locations.
Some sensitivity may be experienced after a laser teeth whitening session, the dentist in Sterling Heights points out. This will go away after a bit, but while sensitivity is present, avoid breathing through your mouth and drinking cold or hot beverages.
Will it hurt? For how long?
If teeth whitening results in great discomfort (meaning, there’s pain), pain relievers may be taken. The discomfort can last for an entire day for some people, but everything usually goes back to normal after 24 hours. If pain persists, do visit the dentist right away in order to determine what’s truly causing the abnormal intensity of discomfort.
For more information about teeth whitening in Sterling Heights, contact your local dentist at Dental1Care today! The professionals at Dental1Care can provide you with many more teeth whitening facts.
Professional Teeth Whitening, Is it Safe?
You are probably interested in getting whiter teeth, but you may also have concerns about the products and treatments available. Which poses the question, is teeth whitening dangerous?
Teeth whitening products and treatments have been studied and monitored by experts and regulatory agencies. Generally speaking, these products and treatments deliver on their promise. You may be considering using an over-the-counter tooth whitening product. Or, maybe you prefer an in-office treatment administered by a dental professional. The truth is, there is nothing to worry about in terms of effectiveness and safety.
However, before you make a decision, there are a few side effects associated with teeth whitening that you should be aware of. Teeth whitening treatments and products may affect your teeth, gums, and previous dental restoration procedures. The extent of these side effects will vary depending on the type of treatment you choose.
Teeth whitening side effects on teeth
One of the most common side effects of teeth bleaching is tooth sensitivity. Your teeth may react to temperature extremes. However, this side effect does not linger for very long. If it does, be sure to contact your local dentist to be sure you dont have any other dental problems creeping up.
Teeth whitening effects on gums
If you are planning on choosing an in-office teeth whitening procedure, you have to be aware that the bleach used by dentists has a higher concentration. When compared to over-the-counter whitening products, dental grade kits are always much stronger. However, when the bleach touches the gums, these can become irritated. The higher the concentration of the whitening gel, the higher the possibility that your gums will be irritated. In order to counter this, your dentist will use special protection for your gums and the roots of your teeth. Should bleach touch your gums, the irritation will subside quickly.
On the other hand, if you choose to use an in-home treatment, you will be using a mouthguard tray for the bleach.
Effects on dental restorations
Another concern many people have about teeth whitening is, it can loosen mercury from silver fillings.
On one hand, many dentists have stopped using this type of restoration. If you have recently had your teeth restored, it is highly likely that your dentist has used a different type of filling. But even if your dentist has used this type of filling, the mercury in the amalgam will not cause harm. Overall, teeth whitening has no adverse side effects on dental restorations, including dental implants and dental crowns. The answer to your question, “Is teeth whitening dangerous?” is no. It’s perfectly safe. And as with any cosmetic product, moderation and common sense application is key.
Preparing for Teeth Whitening
Your local Sterling Heights dentist has deemed you eligible for teeth whitening. You know and understand how the treatment works, as well as the pros and cons (including potential side effects). Now, what do you need to do before the actual treatment process?
Before starting with your teeth whitening treatment, there are a few essential things that need to be done in order to ensure a successful treatment.
Teeth Whitening Preparation Essentials
Prior to your whitening treatment, you need to see your dentist first. During this consultation, your dentist will speak with you about how to proceed with the treatment while factoring in your unique circumstance. If you are currently having some dental issues, your dentist will provide you with different options to choose from.
During this exam, your dentist may evaluate your gum health, check for the presence of tooth decay, perform diagnostic x-rays, check your existing restorations, and screen you for oral cancer.
Next, you will need to have your teeth professionally cleaned. The type of cleaning will depend on the condition of your teeth. For patients whose teeth have accumulated tartar, scaling is recommended as the best treatment. On the other hand, if you have gum diseases and pockets around your teeth have deepened, your dentist will recommend root planing.
Both scaling and root planing are classified under soft tissue management which is considered as the best way to treat gum disease before it worsens. Some patients may also require teeth polishing to remove stains and plaque which cannot be removed through brushing and scaling.
Getting your teeth cleaned prior to teeth whitening will allow you to achieve better results. In fact, the presence of plaque and tartar can undermine the success of the whitening treatment. This is why you should have your teeth cleaned before, and not after, teeth whitening.
The Final Preperation Step
After all of these, the final step you need to undertake before proceeding with the whitening treatment is to choose a color from the shade guide. You start out by choosing a shade that closely matches your teeth. After that, you will need to select the shade that will be your final goal for the treatment. You can go from one shade lighter or more. After the whitening treatment, you can compare your final results with the shade you have initially chosen as your goal.
The right preparation will help guarantee successful treatment. Undergoing these steps prior to whitening will not only ensure the restoration of your teeth’s luster but their health as well. If you haven’t had a teeth whitening consultation with the dental professionals at Dental1Care in Sterling Heights, what are you waiting for? Call their office today!