Cracked Tooth

Sometimes teeth can develop cracks. Cracks can come from trauma or large fillings that over time weaken the rest of the tooth. A cracked tooth may or may not be sensitive to hot and cold, or be painful when biting or chewing. If cracks in the teeth are not treated, serious consequences for your oral health can happen. Even small cracks can allow bacteria into the tooth, causing decay or infection and leading to further destruction. Cracks that progress too far can result in entire sections of the tooth breaking off, and in some cases, loss of the entire tooth....

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Recurrent Decay (Around a restoration)

Even after a tooth has been restored, sometimes decay can reappear and compromise the structure of the tooth all over again. Over time, bacteria works its way into the areas of the tooth surrounding and supporting the filling, and the tooth begins to deteriorate as a result. As the decay worsens, the tooth continues to weaken, which can result in cracking, pain and potentially tooth breakage or loss. If caught early enough, the decay can typically be removed and the tooth re-filled or crowned. However, if left untreated, more serious procedures might be needed such as a root canal, bridge...

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Inlay (Impression)

When repairing a cavity, an inlay can restore your tooth in a more durable manner than a traditional filling. An inlay is typically made of ceramic, composite resin, metal, or gold. At the first appointment, your doctor will take an impression (or mold) to help make a temporary inlay for your tooth. Next your tooth is prepared by removing the decayed portion, leaving an area that will be replaced with the inlay. Your doctor will take another impression of the prepared tooth, and put in a temporary inlay while the final restoration is being fabricated by an expert lab technician....

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Simple Extraction

When a tooth has become so extensively decayed or damaged that it cannot be saved, your dentist may recommend extracting it. In a simple extraction, your tooth is removed without surgery. Your doctor applies slight pressure with a specially designed instrument to gently and gradually ease the tooth from the socket. Once the tooth has been removed, your doctor will clean the area so the healing process can begin. While you are healing, your doctor can fit you with a temporary tooth. When the area has sufficiently healed, your doctor will discuss treatment options to permanently replace the extracted tooth....

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Single Tooth Loss

When a tooth is lost, whether to an injury or decay, if the empty space left behind is not occupied the structure of the mouth can begin to alter as a result. This can lead to progressive adverse effects that should be reviewed with your dentist. To start, the immediate area where the tooth is lost suffers adverse changes in the bone and gum support, typically in the form of tissue loss. These changes can spread to the neighboring teeth, resulting in loss of bone support and the teeth drifting into the vacated space. Additionally, opposing tooth begins to move...

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Anterior Bite Plane

To help minimize tooth wear due to grinding, reduce muscle pain and tension, and diagnose muscle and joint pain issues, a removable appliance called an Anterior Bite Plane may be recommended. An anterior bite plane is a small appliance fabricated by your doctor that is placed on your upper front teeth creating a platform on which your lower teeth can sit and glide. It is typically worn while sleeping but can be worn during the day, typically not to exceed 8 hours. While creating a platform for the front teeth to touch, the appliance prevents back teeth from touching, protecting...

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Bruxism (Clenching and grinding)

Bruxism is a condition where a patient grinds, gnashes, and/or clenches their teeth. It is typically an unconscious behavior, and can occur both while awake and sleeping. Common symptoms of bruxism include worn tooth structure and flattening of the teeth, increased tooth sensitivity, jaw soreness, tenderness of the facial muscles, and dull headaches. The grinding may be loud enough that it can be heard by others, especially if it occurs when you are asleep. Bruxism is commonly associated with airway disturbances, like sleep apnea, and gastric reflux. The constant force of opposing teeth rubbing and grinding against each other causes...

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Dental Erosion

Dental erosion is a condition where tooth structure is lost due to corrosion, chemical reactions dissolving the hard protective coating of the teeth, known as enamel. Common signs and symptoms of dental erosion include tooth sensitivity, tooth discoloration, tooth breakdown, thinning and transparency of the edges of the front teeth, and pitting and cupping on the chewing surfaces of back teeth. The most common cause of dental erosion is the overabundance of acid inside of the mouth. It can be introduced externally by drinking acidic beverages such as soda and fruit juice, and can be introduced internally by medical conditions...

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Non-Carious Cervical Lesions

Non-carious Cervical Lesions describes a condition where tooth structure is lost below the gumline due to forces other than decay. Symptoms of Non-carious cervical lesions are often visual, with notches appearing on the teeth where the crown and root of the tooth meet. They can sometimes be accompanied by gum recession in the area as well. Depending on the depth of the lesions, sensitivity and/or pain may also be present. Current research indicates two primary causes of these lesions- the first is abrasion, where the tooth material is reduced due to overly aggressive or improper tooth brushing technique. The other...

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Occlusal Appliance for Tooth Wear

For clients experiencing tooth wear due to nighttime grinding and jaw clenching, your dentist may recommend an occlusal appliance- commonly called a nightguard or bite splint- to help alleviate the complications associated with the condition. It is not uncommon for tooth wear to be associated with certain airway or breathing conditions, so your doctor may discuss this with you as well. An occlusal appliance is a device that is worn in the mouth overnight and creates a barrier between your upper and lower teeth, eliminating the damage they cause by rubbing against each other. It also promotes improved jaw and...

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