The Importance of Tooth Enamel

Feb 25th, 2015
Easton Dentists Mar 1st, 2017

Enamel, which is the hard mineral-rich outer layer of your teeth, is the number one defense against tooth decay.  Unfortunately over time, enamel can be eroded by acid, which is found in food, drinks, and bacterial plaque.  As enamel erodes, your teeth become more susceptible to tooth decay.  When acid levels rise, calcium in enamel becomes soft which is called de-mineralization.  Your mouth can counteract this process with salvia.  Saliva has the ability to neutralize acid and the calcium within saliva helps bind to your teeth to help replace the lost enamel.  This is a process known as re-mineralization.

If there is too much acid in your mouth, saliva is not able to neutralize the effects.  Drinks that contain high citric acid such as soda and sports drinks can be very damaging to enamel.  Not only are these drinks high in acid, they also have a high buffering capacity that slows down the neutralizing effect of saliva.  Although brushing your teeth after drinking highly acidic beverages seems like a way to protect enamel, it can actually have a counter effect if done to promptly.  Acid found in food or drink softens the enamel and if you brush your teeth too quickly, the brushing can essentially brush away some of your enamel.

There are a few methods in maintaining a healthy pH balance in your mouth.  The most effective way is to limit the amount of acidic food or drinks you consume.  If you decide to drink acidic drinks, use a straw in efforts to reduce the amount of time the acid is in contact with your teeth.  Also try and drink these during your mealtime.  The final step is to wait at least 30 to 60 minutes after drinking or eating something acidic before brushing your teeth.  Because tooth enamel is the main component in maintaining healthy teeth, keeping your enamel strong is the best way to keep your teeth from decay.

To ensure your tooth enamel is intact with proper dental care consult The Dental Center at Easton today!

Root Canal Treatment

Feb 16th, 2015
Easton Dentists Mar 1st, 2017

Your teeth are meant to last a lifetime.  Brushing, flossing, and proper oral hygiene help to keep your teeth strong and healthy over the course of your life.  Sometimes, however, damage can occur to a tooth, most often from a deep cavity or an injury that causes a tooth to crack, and this can cause the interior of the tooth to become infected.  The infection can damage the pulp of the tooth, which is a network of blood vessels and nerves.  If left untreated, the damaged pulp can cause infection that will damage the bone around the tooth, which will then lead to swelling and pain.  If the damaged tooth becomes infected, your dentist may have to preform a root canal to save the tooth.

A root canal involves opening the tooth, removing the damaged pulp, cleaning, shaping, filling and sealing the tooth.  Root canals are a very common and effective procedure used to save the infected tooth from having to be removed.  Root canals do require two appointments because a permeate crown needs to be fitted and molded before it can be applied to the tooth.  During the first appointment, your dentist will remove the infected pulp and drain any abscesses.  The root canal will then be cleaned and shaped for a temporary filling.  During this visit impressions will be taken so a proper fitting crown can be molded for the infected tooth.  During your second visit, your dentist will check the tooth and make sure all of the infection has cleared.  Once this has been completed, the permanent crown will be applied to the tooth.  Any adjustments to the shape of the crown will be made so that the new crown does not affect your bite.

After your root canal has been completed, your tooth will look and feel as good as new.  Proper oral hygiene will help prevent any additional infections to the tooth.  If you are experiencing any sensitivity or discomfort, schedule an appointment with your dentist today to address the issue and prevent any further decay.

How Do You Know If You Need A Root Canal?

Feb 9th, 2015
Easton Dentists Mar 1st, 2017

If you’ve been experiencing tooth sensitivity or pain, how do you know if you need a root canal?  This answer unfortunately is sometimes painfully obvious, and that pain is caused within the affected tooth.

Anyone can experience some degree of tooth discomfort.  An issue within a tooth’s root canal is not necessarily always the cause for discomfort.  You might experience sensitivity to hot or cold liquids or foods, which isn’t usually a sign of a serious problem.  These symptoms could also be the result of a loose filling, a small area of decay, or an exposed root surface.  If you are experiencing sharp pain that occurs when you bite down, pain that lingers after you’ve consumed hot or cold food or drinks, or a constant ache from an area that is difficult to pinpoint, these may all be symptoms of infection or inflammation within the root canal.  An infection within the pulp tissue of a tooth is typically treated with a root canal.

A root canal dentist will be the only one who can determine whether the pulp tissue inside your tooth is the cause of the pain.  If this is confirmed, then a root canal procedure can be the most effective way of relieving the pain and preventing further damage to the area.

If you ever begin to feel severe aching or pressure in your mouth that does not subside, or if you begin to notice sensitivity and swelling in your gums, don’t wait for the problem to fix itself!  These symptoms are all major reasons to schedule an appointment with your dentist and have the issue checked out and treated.