Short-Term Orthodontics, Winchester VA

There are many adults out there who are unhappy and self-conscious about their smile. Most are reluctant to address the situation as they don’t want the cumbersome metal braces, they feel it will take far too long, and the cost will be astronomical. This is why the Six Month Smile, a type of bracket and wire orthodontic correction for straightening the front upper and lower teeth in approximately six months, was created.

The Six Month Smile uses clear brackets and tooth colored nickel-titanium wires. This procedure can treat a variety of orthodontic problems that affect the cosmetic appearance of your smile. It offers a combination low-movement forces and short overall treatment time. This benefits the patient by increasing comfort, hygiene, and safety; making it ideal for patients want the cosmetic straightening benefits of braces but who do not the long or complex procedures for bite and occlusion.

Short term orthodontic treatment is suitable for a variety of misalignment problems, including extrusions, rotations, intrusions and tipping. It also is appropriate for the problems that cause common cosmetic dental issues in the front teeth, including:

  • Diastemas and spacing
  • Overbites and open bites
  • Crowding and overlapping teeth
  • Canted midlines and asymmetry
  • Reverse smile lines

If you have any of these dental issues, you yourself may be a candidate for the Six Month Smile.  As it sounds, the procedure takes about six months, however some cases are as short as four where as others are a bit longer at nine months. Call us today to set up an appointment to see if you qualify at 540-486-5111. Let’s get you the smile you always wanted!

Oral Health Tips from Cedar Creek Dental, Winchester VA

Good oral health can have far reaching benefits, more so than most people think. A healthy smile can truly transform your appearance, this in turn can lead to greater self-confidence; increase a positive mind set, as well as improving the health of not only your mouth but your body too.

To help with this, we broke oral health tips down into three separate segments; Caring, Dentist, and Diet.

Caring for your mouth!

  • Brush your teeth once you wake up and after your last meal, be sure to use fluoride toothpaste.
  • Floss your teeth at least once a day to get food out that you normally can’t reach.
  • Use mouthwash, but not after brushing as it can wash away the fluoride.
  • Quit smoking to help reduce the chances of tooth staining, gum disease, tooth loss, and in more severe cases mouth cancer.
  • Make sure your toothpaste contains fluoride; it helps strengthen tooth enamel making it more resistant to decay.
  • Change out your toothbrush regularly as so it doesn’t break down and gives you the most cleaning power.

Visiting your Dentist!

  • Visit your dentist regularly, and as often as they recommend.
  • If you are nervous about visiting the dentist, make sure they are aware of why so they can improve your treatment.
  • Help to overcome dental anxiety by taking a friend with you for support or listen to music to help you relax and focus on something else.
  • Visiting a dental hygienist can help give you excellent tips and advice on preventing dental problems.

Your Diet and oral health!

  • Chew sugar-free gum after eating or drinking, especially sugary foods, to help protect your teeth and gums in between meals.
  • Wait an hour after eating or drinking anything before brushing as then enamel will be softened and you could be brushing away tiny particles.
  • A varied diet that is rich in vitamins, minerals, and fresh fruit and vegetables can help to prevent gum disease.

A healthy mouth can lead to a happy and healthy overall life. It’s never too late to start good habits, nor is it ever too early for children! Call us to set up an appointment today, by calling 540-486-5111; let’s get you on the road to a healthy smile!

How Do Our Teeth Stain? Winchester VA Dentistry

Chances are, you’ve heard the term “tooth discoloration”, but what is it? How can your teeth change color? Your teeth can become discolored by stains on the surface or by changes inside the tooth itself. Discoloration is broken down into three categories (causation):

  • Extrinsic – This occurs when the outer layer of the tooth, the enamel, becomes stained. This is primarily caused because of your diet. Liquids like coffee, wine, cola, and other drinks as well as food can stain your teeth and give them a darker appearance. Smoking is also a major cause of staining.
  • Intrinsic – This is where the inner part of the tooth, the dentin, darkens and or turns yellow. There are a multitude of reasons why this can happen, here are a few examples:
    • You had too much exposure to fluoride during early childhood.
    • You had trauma that affected a tooth when you were a young child. A fall, for example, may damage the developing permanent tooth.
    • You had trauma in a permanent tooth, and internal bleeding discolored the tooth.
    • You used tetracycline antibiotics when you were 8 years old or younger.
  • Age-Related – This is a combination of extrinsic and intrinsic factors. Over time, dentin inside our teeth will naturally yellow and darken, and the enamel on your teeth will naturally begin to thin; this allows the dentin to become more visible and allows for easier staining on the tooth.

Preventing staining is relatively straight forward. Brushing your teeth after each meal will help prevent staining. Dentists also recommend that you rinse your mouth out with water after having wine, coffee or other drinks or foods that can stain your teeth.

Intrinsic stains that are caused by damage to a nerve or blood vessel in a tooth sometimes can be prevented. You may need to have root canal treatment to remove the inner part of the tooth (the pulp) before it has a chance to decay and darken. However, teeth that have root canal treatment may darken anyway.

Reversing these effects is very easy and a common practice. Discoloration often can be removed by applying a bleaching agent to the tooth enamel. One technique is called “power bleaching.” With this method, the dentist applies a light-activated bleaching gel. It causes the teeth to get significantly whiter in about 30 to 45 minutes.

If you have stained teeth and want a pearly white smile, call our office today and set up an appointment at 540-486-5111 and get your smile back!

Diabetes: Dental Health Tips in Winchester VA

Diabetes is more prevalent now than ever. But what is it? Diabetes is disease in which the body’s ability to produce or respond to the hormone insulin is impaired, this causes you blood sugar to rise.  People who have diabetes know the disease can harm the eyes, nerves, kidneys, heart and other important systems in the body. Did you know diabetes can also cause oral health problems?

People with diabetes are at special risk for periodontal (gum) disease, an infection of the gum and bone that hold the teeth in place. Periodontal disease can lead to painful chewing difficulties and even tooth loss. Dry mouth, often a symptom of undetected diabetes, can cause soreness, ulcers, infections, and tooth decay. Smoking may enhance these symptoms as well.

Good blood sugar levels are key to controlling and preventing mouth problems. People with poor blood sugar control get gum disease more often and more severely than people whose diabetes is well controlled. Daily brushing and flossing, regular dental check-ups and good blood glucose control are the best defense against the oral complications of diabetes.

When kept in check, you can lead a perfectly normal and happy life. Simply keeping check of your sugar daily will help you to avoid oral health issues further down the road. If you have diabetes and you are worried about your dental health, call us today at 540-486-5111 for an appointment. Let us help you and your smile!

What Are Dental Implants? Winchester VA Dentistry

Tooth loss can be an embarrassing situation for adults, luckily there is a treatment that can replace these missing teeth. A Dental Implant is a form of cosmetic dentistry that is used to replace missing or severely damaged teeth in order to look and feel as if they are natural. The procedure permanently attaches the implant to the jaw bone just below the gum to become a stable platform in which the artificial tooth, also known as a crown, will be affixed to.

Who is a candidate for dental implants? Unfortunately, not everyone is a candidate, mainly children who are still growing. Typically, by the time you reach your early twenties your mouth stops growing and are suitable. Some of the conditions that can benefit from restorative implants:

  • Existing Conditions – Some conditions like diabetes or high blood pressure can lead to tooth loss over time, requiring implants.
  • Gum Disease – Gum Disease can lead to the loss of teeth, restorative dental implants can give back what was lost.
  • Dentures – People who wear dentures can be eligible to for this permanent solution. This way they don’t have to worry about their dentures moving around or what foods they can and cannot eat.
  • Smokers – Although smoking can lessen the chances of a successful implant, tooth loss from the habit can be fixed with implants.
  • Bone Loss – Bone loss is a common problem for people who have lost teeth or have periodontal disease. However experienced cosmetic dentists are experienced in grafting bone to permanently secure implants.

Implants can be placed in one sitting; however, it can take up to six months for the bone to fuse to the titanium screws that are placed in the jaw. In the first step, the dentist surgically places the implant in the jaw. After the healing process, the dentist then installs the extension portion, called the “post”. Once in place, the crown will be placed on the post which will look and feel like a natural tooth that had once been there.

Dental implants have one of the highest success rates in dentistry. Smokers do have a lower success rate; however, your dentist may have you give up smoking all together in order for the bone to have a healthy and complete fusion. If taken care of properly, with good hygiene practice, they can last for up to 40 years.

If you want a permanent and natural looking solution to missing or severely damaged teeth, call us at 540-486-5111 and set up and appointment today. Bring back the smile you once had!

 

Baby Teeth – Winchester VA

If you’re reading this, then you yourself have experienced growing baby teeth and shedding them for the ones you have now. When we are born, we already have all 20 of our primary teeth in our jaws. These begin to push out between 6 to 12 months of age. Every child is different, but normally the teeth begin coming out in the front of the mouth and work their way to the back. Most children will have a full set of all 20 teeth by the age of 3.

Baby teeth are very important for your child’s health and development. These teeth help your child to smile, speak, and most importantly the ability to chew food. They also hold space in the jaw for the permanent teeth to grow. If a baby tooth is lost to early, the permanent tooth will not be held in place and it can drift and the adult teeth around it may find it difficult to find room when they come in. This can cause crooked teeth, so it is very important to take good care of your child’s dental health.

After the first tooth comes in, and no later than the first birthday, it’s time for your child to have their first visit to the dentist. Apart from checking for cavities and any dental issues, your dentist will show you how to care for their teeth and how to handle habits like thumb sucking.

Here are some helpful tips for caring for your child’s teeth:

  • Begin cleaning your baby’s mouth the first few days after birth with a clean moist gauze or washcloth. As soon as the first tooth appears, decay can begin to occur. So a dental visit is very important.
  • For children under the age of 3, begin brushing their teeth as soon as the first tooth comes in with a fluoride toothpaste the size of a grain of rice. It is a good habit to brush in the morning and the evening (twice a day).
  • For children 3 to 6 years old, use fluoride toothpaste the size of a pea. Supervise them and remind them not to swallow the toothpaste.
  • Until you are comfortable that your child can brush their teeth on their own, keep using a child size toothbrush and a pea size amount of toothpaste. As soon as two teeth begin to touch, begin flossing daily.

If your baby just got their first tooth or it’s almost their first birthday, we would love to meet them! Your child’s dental health is important, so let us help you give them decades of smiles and health! Call us today to set up an appointment at 540-486-5111. We look forward to seeing those baby smiles.

 

Root Canal Service in Winchester VA – How invasive are they?

For most people, the term “Root Canal” is frightening and sounds like a complex and invasive procedure. When in reality, it is actually one of the most common dental procedures performed each year. According to the American Association of Endontists, there are 15 million root canal’s performed each year. Put simply, that’s over 40,000 a day!

Before knowing what the procedure is, we first have to look at why they are necessary. Each one of our teeth has a hollow center area filled with blood vessels and pulp. This pulp, also known as the “nerve”, provides vital functions for the tooth including giving sensitivity, formation of dentin and providing nourishment for the tooth.

Trauma to our teeth such as a cracked tooth, deep cavity, or excessive dental treatment can cause this pulp to become infected. This painful infection can provoke the tooth to have extreme sensitivity to temperature and pressure.

The fix is very simple and straight forward. First, the dentist will use a local anesthetic to numb the tooth and surrounding area. Then a small opening is made in the crown to access the pulp chamber. The infected pulp is removed with a special file and the pulp chamber is repeatedly flushed out to insure no infection remains. Finally, a permanent fill is put in to prevent further infection and contamination, then the top of the tooth where the small opening was made is filled in.

The recovery time for most adults is roughly one to two days. During this period it is not uncommon to have sensitivity around the tooth. After the recovery time your tooth will be sensitivity free. Root canals are an in and out treatment, sometimes a follow up is needed. If you are having tooth pain, give us a call at 540-486-5111 so we can help.

Your Guide to Preventing Dry Sockets – Winchester, VA.

After a tooth extraction, a blood clot forms to cover the socket where the tooth was originally seated.  If this blood clot becomes loose and opens up, then a dry socket occurs, which can be incredibly painful. If there is a foul taste and smell emanating from the extraction site within a few days of the operation, then it may be a dry socket.


The best way to prevent a dry socket is to explicitly follow your dentist’s instructions following an extraction, which usually involves first putting gauze over the extraction site and biting it firmly.  This process gives time for the clot to form.  Once the clot has formed, remember not to spit or drink from a straw.  Many commonly spit out the toothpaste and water after brushing, so remember to be very careful to allow it to flow out of your mouth without actually spitting.

 

Any action that creates suction can potentially cause the clot to become knocked loose.  Birth control pills have historically created a higher risk of a dry socket, so try to schedule the appointment at a time when they may not be needed for a few days.. After the operation, remember to eat right, because even food can knock the clot loose. Focus on eating soft foods until your dentist advises otherwise.  Applesauce and yogurt are great snacks after an extraction.

 

What should you do if you do get a dry socket?  First, contact your dentist, who can apply a medical dressing to the area which allows time for your mouth to heal.  It may be painful if you receive one, but having a professional address the issue immediately is crucial. If you’ve found yourself with tooth pain, give us a call at 540-486-5111 so we can help.

The Benefits of Fluoride Varnish – Winchester, VA.

While fluoride varnish is a common treatment for children, it can benefit adults as well.  Fluoride treatments can help prevent tooth decay, strengthen the surface of the tooth or treat hypersensitivity. Fluoride varnish is high concentration of fluoride which is painted to the surface of the tooth to with a small brush. The fluoride then hardens and will wash away with regular brushing within 12 hours.

Various medications can cause a dry mouth, and this lack of saliva can increase the risk of tooth decay. In more extreme circumstances, radiation therapy in the head or neck may be necessary for a separate medical condition, but this radiation can damage the salivary glands and cause a far more harsh drop in the saliva production. Since the varnish can strengthen the surface of the tooth, it helps to counteract the risk.

Many suffer from sensitive teeth where they may be hesitant to eat cold foods like ice cream. While certain brands of toothpaste can limit the sensitivity, fluoride varnish can help as it can be applied to the exposed areas, strengthening the enamel and dentin. The seal provided by the varnish creates a barrier between the trigger of the sensitivity (such as ice cream). While the best practice is to brush and floss daily, many forget to maintain good oral hygiene on a regular basis. As a result, food can harden into plaque and cause tooth decay. For those with poor hygiene, the varnish helps to fight the decay.

Do you wish to have fluoride varnish applied to your teeth? Schedule an appointment today by calling (540) 486-5111 at Cedar Creek Dental.

Choosing if Dental Veneers are Right for you – Dental Care in Winchester, VA.

Dental veneers are thin shells, usually made of porcelain, which act as an additional cover for the tooth for cosmetic purposes.  Dental veneers serve the purpose of changing the color, size or shape of the tooth, thus they seek solely to address the appearance, rather than restore or protect the tooth.  For example, if your teeth are discolored, chipped, or abnormally shaped, then dental veneers can restore the teeth to a natural look.  

Since veneers are custom made, they will look natural and fit right in with your teeth, giving the benefit of increased confidence that comes with a perfect smile/  However, if you prefer a more modest look, you can choose a shade of white which is closer to the natural color of your teeth.  Consider the shade carefully – although a brighter shade of white may look more appealing, also remember that over the years your teeth may naturally change colors. However the veneers will retain their color until they are replaced.  Although dental veneers may be durable enough to last ten to twenty years, they are more fragile than dental crowns, so for individuals who grind their teeth or even chew on ice, then it will shorten the lifespan of the veneers.

When considering dental veneers, remember that the goal is cosmetic. If for example the teeth are decayed, the enamel is severely weakened. then dental crowns are are a better option.  However, dental veneers offer the benefit that they do not require a restructuring to your teeth.

If you want that perfect smile today,  then call (540) 486-5111 today to schedule an appointment with Cedar Creek Dental.