Is Dental Anxiety For Real?

Jun 16th, 2019
Easton Dentists Jul 5th, 2019

Believe it or not, there is an actual syndrome that is called Dental Anxiety.  Numerous studies have been performed on the topic.  One such study resulted in the following questionnaire, developed by J.H. Clarke and S. Rustvold, Oregon Health Sciences University School of Dentistry, 1993, and revised in 1998.  This scale helps dentists, especially emergency dentists, determine how to treat certain patients.

If you are anxious about visiting the dentist, please print out this form and rank your concerns or anxiety over the dental procedures listed below. Please fill in any additional concerns and bring to your appointment or your visit to your emergency dentist in Gahanna, Ohio.

Level of Concern or Anxiety

1. Sound or vibration of the drill:  Low Moderate High Don’t know

2. Not being numb enough:  Low Moderate High Don’t know

3. Dislike the numb feeling:  Low Moderate High Don’t know

4. Injection (“Novocain”):  Low Moderate High Don’t know

5. Probing to assess gum disease:  Low Moderate High Don’t know

6. The sound or feel of scraping  during teeth cleaning: Low Moderate High Don’t know

7. Gagging, for example during impressions  of the mouth: Low Moderate High Don’t know

8. X-rays:  Low Moderate High Don’t know

9. Rubber dam:  Low Moderate High Don’t know

10. Jaw gets tired: Low Moderate High Don’t know

11. Cold air hurts teeth: Low Moderate High Don’t know

12. Not enough information about procedures: Low Moderate High Don’t know

13. Root canal treatment:  Low Moderate High Don’t know

14. Extraction:  Low Moderate High Don’t know

15. Fear of being injured:  Low Moderate High Don’t know

16. Panic attacks:  Low Moderate High Don’t know

17. Not being able to stop the dentist: Low Moderate High Don’t know

18. Not feeling free to ask questions: Low Moderate High Don’t know

19. Not being listened to or taken seriously: Low Moderate High Don’t know

20. Being criticized, put down, or lectured to: Low Moderate High Don’t know

21. Smells in the dental office: Low Moderate High Don’t know

22. I am worried that I may need a lot of  dental treatment: Low Moderate High Don’t know

23. I am worried about the cost of the  dental treatment I may need: Low Moderate High Don’t know

24. I am worried about the number of appointments and the time that will be required for necessary appointments and treatment; time away from work, or the   need for childcare or transportation:  Low Moderate High Don’t know

25. I am embarrassed about the condition  of my mouth:  Low Moderate High Don’t know

26. I don’t like feeling confined or not in control: Low Moderate High Don’t know

Keep in mind that your emergency dentist in Columbus Ohio may or may not have time to use this tool. It is suggested that when you call for an appointment, that you notify staff at Easton Dental that you are concerned or experience dental anxiety. If you decide to take this assessment, be prepared to discuss with Dr. Gilmer to ensure the best possible care.

New Dental Fillings Are Nano-Terrific!

Jun 13th, 2012
Easton Dentists Mar 1st, 2017

Sometimes, visiting your dentist on a regular basis and treating a cavity the traditional way just isn’t enough for some researchers.

As we now know, tooth decay affects our physical, mental and social well being. Caused by acids secreted by bacteria in our mouth, tooth decay (cavity) is almost always been treated by removing the decayed area on the tooth and refilling the area with a substance such as gold, silver amalgam, composite, or ceramic. Because of recent scientific development and research at the University of Maryland School of Dentistry, we can add one more material to that list—Nanotech!

Researchers using nanotechology (the study of manipulating matter on an atomic and molecular scale) at the University of Maryland School of Dentistry have created a dental filling that can do much more than the traditional dental filling materials used in the past. The new material consists of tiny, nano-size particles of silver and calcium, along with an antibacterial primer and antibacterial adhesive.

Professor Xu, who directs the school’s Division of Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering, explains, “The reason we want to get the antibacterial agents also into primers and adhesives is that these are the first things that cover the internal surfaces of the tooth cavity and flow into tiny dental tubules inside the tooth.” Simply put, the nanotech filling material not only treats cavities, but it also kills the harmful bacteria that exists in the mouth, in addition to cultivating growth to the tooth structure that is often lost to bacterial decay.

What’s even better is researchers expect the nanotech dental fillings will last longer than the traditional dental filling substances that typically last five to 10 years. However, the exact lifespan of nanotech fillings has not yet be determined and patents are currently pending.

The professionals at The Dental Center at Easton Town Center are consistently following progressive advancements in the field of dentistry and oral health. They actively engage in passing on vital information, promoting the necessity for optimum dental health, to their patients and public, alike. If you’ve delayed a trip to a dentist in your area, now’s the time to make an appointment to remove that tooth decay. We’re accepting new patients now!

New Massaging Method Could Quadruple Protection Against Tooth Decay

May 4th, 2012
Easton Dentists Mar 1st, 2017

The well-known daily drill of brushing and flossing twice a day is fine and dandy, as your dentist will tell you, but massaging your chompers after lunch adds to the protection against tooth decay. In fact, the University of Gothenburg (Sweden) researchers have found that by massaging high-fluoride toothpaste on your teeth in between your morning and bedtime brushing routine, you can increase protection against tooth decay by approximately 400 percent.

This is terrific news, seeing that dentists have been noticing a significant rise of cavities and tooth decay among young children. We, at The Dental Center at Easton Town Center, recommend the massaging regimen to all our patients. Rubbing toothpaste on your teeth allows fluoride to remain on the surface longer than just brushing. It is almost like brushing your teeth for a third time. However, it should never be a replacement for daily brushing and flossing. Your local dentist will remind you this routine is still needed for adequate plaque removal.

Below are three easy steps to the dental massaging technique that provide your teeth and gums added protection.

1. Massage high-fluoride toothpaste on the surface of your teeth and gums after lunch or in the afternoon.
2. Let sit for 30 minutes or so.
3. Rinse with water and voila!

Check with a family dentist in your area before implementing the dental massaging method on children. Children have different requirements when it comes to fluoride and too much can cause dental problems, such as developing fluorosis (a disturbance of dental enamel from overexposure to fluoride).

However, for adults, especially those who are dealing with dental issues or poor oral hygiene, the massage method is definitely something to consider. In addition to brushing and flossing twice a day, and seeing your dentist every six months, massaging your chompers will help keep them cavity-free and you’ll avoid dental emergencies down the road.

Ways to Promote Good Dental Health: Sink Your Teeth Into This—Licorice

Apr 26th, 2012
Easton Dentists Mar 1st, 2017

We’ve spent many years in the Columbus area providing comprehensive and emergency dental services to our clients. And one question we always hear from our patients is, “What are other ways, besides brushing and flossing that I can improve my dental health?”

Often when one thinks of licorice, the vision of red or black chewy rope candy comes to mind. Licorice candy certainly is not something dentists or doctors encourage their patients to indulge in, but dried licorice root is! Licorice root is a natural herb that promotes good dental health and comes in many forms, such as sticks, loose tea, powder, and liquid extract. Its sweet menthol flavor makes it a tasty supplement to the basic daily ritual of brushing, flossing and rinsing.

The benefits of using licorice root are numerous.

• Freshens breath
• Remedies sore throats
• Prevents oral infections
• Inhibits the growth of plaque and tartar
• Soothes digestive issues
• Decreases inflammation
• Enhances the immune system

This is a great thing to know, especially since the World Health Organization reports that “tooth decay affects more than one-fourth of U.S. children aged 2-5 years and half of those aged 12-15 years.” Those are high percentages, as is this startling statistic: “one-fourth of U.S. adults aged 65 or older have lost all of their teeth.”

If you are thinking about adding licorice root to your daily dental regimen, talk with your doctor or local dentist first. As with any herbal supplement, there are slight risks for adverse reactions with medications and complications in certain medical conditions, such as high blood pressure and pregnancy. Most often than not, though, licorice root can be used safely in moderation.

Certainly, licorice root seems to be a wonderful supplement that promotes good dental health and hygiene, but it should never be a replacement for brushing, flossing, and regular dental checkups. It is definitely something to sink your teeth into! Teeth and gums are two personal assets worth tending to and improving for a lifetime of eating and smiles!

Live in Central Ohio? Schedule your appointment today with The Dental Center at Easton Town Center!

Oral Cancer: The Not-So-Famous Disease

Apr 11th, 2012
Easton Dentists Mar 1st, 2017

The Dental Center at Easton Town Center wants to let you know that April is Oral Cancer Awareness month and we wanted to take the opportunity to talk about the “not so famous” cancer that can affect anyone. Even though more than 40,000 cases of oral cancer are diagnosed in America each year during routine dental appointments, it has not yet reached the ranks of notoriety as other types of cancer (i.e. lung cancer, breast cancer, skin cancer). Oral cancer doesn’t have any high profile fundraisers. In fact, many do not know that the red and white ribbon is the symbol for oral cancer awareness. Therefore, there is no better time than today to take a closer look at the nitty-gritty of this disease.

Could you be at risk? Oral cancer is certainly on the rise. In decades past, tobacco users were at the top of the list for developing oral cancer. However, the “at risk” group has now expanded to also include men and women who consume an excessive amount of alcohol, spend a lot of time in the sun, and/or are the carrier of HPV (the human papilloma virus).

What are the warning signs? In its early stages, there’s rarely any pain associated with oral cancer. A discolored patch or lumps in or around the mouth, consistent hoarseness, and/or difficulty swallowing are the most common warning signs. The longer the cancerous tissue is left untreated, the more painful it becomes.

Routine Screenings. Screenings are a valuable tool that can save your life. Local dental professionals are trained to assess and evaluate the health of the tissue of the cheeks, gum, palate, tongue and lips. In fact, screenings are routinely done at six-month checkups and regular cleanings. However, if you feel something looks or feels different in your mouth or throat in between your dental checkups, it is very important to let your dentist know. The earlier oral cancer is detected, the greater likelihood it can be treated!

Prevention.
• Avoid all forms of tobacco.
• Limit or drink alcohol in moderation.
• Get HPV vaccination.
• Schedule regular dental exams.

Not only is oral cancer not-so-famous, it is not-so-fun. The death rate from oral cancer is higher than cervical cancer, yet there is less national publicity regarding the crux of the disease. We at The Dental Center at Easton Town Center want to do our part during Oral Cancer Awareness month— we want to get the message out to the public that routine dental screenings are essential to a long healthy life!

As your local dentist, for Columbus residents, we’d be happy to schedule an appointment for an examination in the near future. If you feel you have an emergency situation, we are ready to help!

Could This Mean the End of Root Canals?

Jul 20th, 2010
Easton Dentists Mar 1st, 2017

A new development in dentistry could lead to fewer trips to your Emergency dentist in Columbus Ohio.

 Scientists are excited to report an advance toward what could be the next big treatment revolution in dentistry – the end of root canals. Instead, root canal therapy would bring diseased teeth back to life, instead of leaving a “non-vital” or dead tooth in the mouth. According to a report in the monthly journal ACS Nano, a first-of-its-kind, nano-sized dental film shows early promise for achieving this long-sought goal. Gone would be the days of one of the most feared procedures in the history of dentistry.

The report cites the root canal procedures as helping to prevent tooth loss in millions of people each year. During the procedure, your Emergency dentist in Columbus Ohio removes the painful, inflamed pulp, which is the soft tissue inside the diseased or injured tooth that contains nerves and blood vessels.

 The process of regenerative endodontics develops and delivers tissues to replace diseased or damaged dental pulp, and also has the potential to provide a revolutionary alternative to pulp removal. 

The scientists says that the development of a multilayered, nano-sized film that is only 1/50,000th the thickness of a human hair contains a substance that could help regenerate dental pulp. Previous studies show that the substance has anti-inflammatory properties, which could also greatly reduce the discomfort that is often associated with dental procedures. In laboratory tests, alpha-MSH (or alpha melanocyte stimulating hormone) in combination with a widely-used polymer produced a material that fights inflammation in dental pulp fibroblasts. Fibroblasts are the main type of cell found in dental pulp. Nano-films containing alpha-MSH also increased the number of these cells. The scientists conclude that this discovery could help revitalize damaged teeth and reduce the need for a root canal procedure. 

 While this procedure won’t entire eradicate the need for root canal altogether, your Emergency dentist in Columbus Ohio is here to meet all of your dental needs.

Is Sleep Apnea a Dental Emergency?

Apr 26th, 2010
Easton Dentists Mar 1st, 2017

We’ve all heard about the dangers of sleep apnea: excessive daytime sleepiness, increased risk of accidents while driving, as well as cognitive effects. If left untreated, sleep apnea can even be fatal, which is why it is crucial to be properly fitted for oral appliances to correct the situation. Fear not, your emergency dentist in Columbus and New Albany can help!

One of the most common treatments for sleep apnea is a procedure called Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP).  In this procedure, a device is attached to a mask worn by the sufferer as they sleep.  While it is shown to be effective for many people, it is uncomfortable and awkward.

The American Academy of Sleep Medicine recommends dental devices for patients with mild-to-moderate obstructive sleep apnea who are not appropriate candidates for CPAP or who have not been helped by it. Several different dental devices are available:

· Mandibular Advancement Devices are the most widely used dental devices for sleep apnea. They look very much like a sports mouth guard, forcing the lower jaw forward and down slightly, and keeping the airway open.

· Tongue Retraining Devices are splints that hold the tongue in place to keep the airway as open as possible. Patients fitted with one should have a check-up early on to see if it is working, as it may need to be adjusted or replaced periodically.

Dental devices seem to offer several benefits over CPAP:

· Significant reduction in apneas for those with mild-to-moderate apnea, particularly if patients sleep either on their backs or stomachs.
· Improvement in sleep in many patients.
· Improvement and reduction in the frequency of snoring and loudness of snoring in most patients.
· Better long-term control of sleep apnea when compared to uvulopalatopharyngoplasty, which is the standard surgical treatment. There are also few complications with a dental device.

Of course, dental devices also come with some disadvantages:

· Dental devices are not as effective as CPAP therapy.
· The cost of these devices tends to be high.
· Side effects associated with dental devices include:
o Nighttime pain, dry lips, tooth discomfort, and excessive salivation. Over the long-term, these side effects tend cause nearly half of patients to stop using dental devices.
o Permanent changes in the position of the teeth or jaw have occurred in some cases of long-term use. Patients should have regular visits with a health professional to check the devices and make adjustments.
o In a small percentage of patients, the treatment may worsen apnea.

An orthodontic treatment called rapid maxillary expansion, in which a screw device is temporarily applied to the upper teeth and tightened regularly, may also help patients with sleep apnea and a narrow upper jaw. This nonsurgical procedure helps to reduce nasal pressure and improve breathing.  Your emergency dentist at The Dental Center can assist you in selecting the right solution for you.

Pulling Wisdom Teeth – Post Operative Care

Apr 19th, 2010
Easton Dentists Mar 1st, 2017

Having your wisdom teeth removed takes some recovery time and complications are unfortunately common. You are trying to heal an area of the body that stays moist and is bombarded with foreign substances like food particles and bacteria. Unlike a surgical incision elsewhere on the body, the incisions made in the mouth cannot be easily bandaged and protected during the healing process. Your emergency dentist in Columbus, Ohio or your oral surgeon can give you specific instructions.

Immediately after the surgery, you have to let the affects of the anesthetic wear off. That means rest. Avoid physical exertion for the rest of the day and maybe for several days after. There are great variations in the amount of rest you will need until you heal depending on your age, the amount of bone that was removed, and your own individuality.

Watch for bleeding. You will have blood-tinged saliva for the first 48 hours or so. This is normal. But if there are dark red clots of blood in your mouth, that isn’t normal. If you have gauze, bite on it while you lie still for about forty-five minutes or so. If you don’t have gauze, use a folded up paper towel—anything to put pressure on the surgical site. If the bleeding persists, call your emergency dentist in Columbus, Ohio.

If you have been prescribed pain medication, take only as needed to control the pain. If you find the pain medication inadequate to control the pain in the dosage prescribed, call your dentist.

Eat soft foods and drink plenty of liquids the day of the surgery and for a few days after. Don’t rush getting back to solid foods. Continue to eat soft foods until you can chew without pain. Make sure your diet includes protein and vitamin C. Ice cream and milk are good sources of nutrients for healing.

Keep the surgical site clean as much as you can. Start by rinsing with salt water several times a day. A teaspoon of salt in a cup of water is about the right mixture. Brush your teeth, but use a soft brush. After a couple of days, begin to brush the teeth furthest back, being sure not to disturb any loose tissue that has been sutured into place.

A common healing complication is dry socket. This occurs in 10% to 15% of patients, and is much more prevalent in the lower jaw. With dry socket, healing progresses normally for about three days, and then there is a dramatic increase in pain coming from the socket and radiating to the ear. If this happens to you, call your emergency dentist.

The roots of lower wisdom teeth may lie near the main nerve to the lower jaw, and their crowns may be near the nerve to the tongue. During the surgery, these nerves could be damaged. This happens in 1% to 2% of cases. The result is numbness in the lips, chin, and teeth on the side affected, or in the side of the tongue. This is rarely permanent, but it is annoying for several weeks up to several months. Movement would not be affected—only sensation. If this happens to you, your emergency dentist in Columbus, Ohio will be able to determine the actual cause. It may be that the nerves were not touched during the surgery, but there is swelling pressing on the nerve, causing it to go numb. In this case, a prescription of anti-inflammatory medication can ease the swelling and make recovery quicker.

If the roots of your upper wisdom teeth lie close enough to the wall of one of your nasal sinuses, your sinus wall could be perforated during the operation. If that happens, you would notice bleeding through your nose after the surgery. Call your dentist, who can advise you on how to care for it until it heals. Your dentist may want to perform a minor post-operative surgical procedure to close the hole. In rare cases, the wall between the tooth and the sinus can be so delicate that attempts at extraction cause the tooth or a piece of the tooth to be displaced into the sinus. If this happens, the piece or tooth should be surgically removed to prevent later sinus infections.

When Do You Need an Emergency Dentist?

Apr 5th, 2010
Easton Dentists Mar 1st, 2017

Emergency dental services are needed for a wide variety of reasons. Here’s a list of common dental emergencies that should send you seeking an emergency dentist.

Knocked Out Tooth – Any sort of blow to the face or jaw that completely knocks out a tooth or multiple teeth is cause for an emergency dentist. If possible, save the tooth and hold it in place in the socket. If that’s not possible, gently rinse off the knocked out tooth without removing any attached tissue and then put the tooth in a glass of milk. Treatment for a knocked out tooth should not wait until morning. The sooner you get to an emergency dentist, the greater the likelihood that the tooth might be able to be re-attached.

Broken Tooth – If you are involved in an accident where a tooth is broken, try to save any pieces of the broken tooth that you can and rinse your mouth out with warm water. Again, put the broken pieces in some milk if possible. To decrease the swelling and pain, apply a cold compress to the area. Get to your emergency dentist as soon as possible.

Dental Abscess — If you notice a painful, pimple-like swelling on your gums, rinse with warm salt water and immediately contact an emergency dentist. Dental abscesses can lead to serious infections if not treated promptly.

Broken Jaw — Apply a cold compress to limit swelling and go immediately to a hospital emergency room or to an emergency dental clinic. If you suspect your jaw is broken, do not wait to seek help.

Object Stuck in Teeth — Carefully try to dislodge the object with dental floss. Do not try to use a sharp instrument. If you’re unable to dislodge the object with dental floss, contact your dentist.

Severe Toothache — Rinse your mouth out with warm water. Then use dental floss to make sure there isn’t any food or other debris causing the pain. If the pain is severe and persists more than a few hours, seek emergency dental care.

Lost Dental Filling or Dental Crown — For dental fillings, cover the area with a piece of sugarless gum or over-the-counter dental cement. If a dental crown has come loose, try to put it back in place with dental cement. If that doesn’t work, bring it with you to the dentist.

Here at The Dental Center, we are the emergency dentist in Columbus Ohio for the northeastern side of Franklin County. We are open extended hours to be available for most emergencies. If you find yourself in one of these situations, please call or come to our offices. We are here to help you.

What Eating Disorders Can do to Your Teeth

Mar 14th, 2010
Easton Dentists Mar 1st, 2017

It’s no secret that disordered eating to avoid weight gain is a bad idea. Americans are well aware of the fact that eating disorders exist in this country and that the rates of these disorders are ever increasing. Studies show that 0.5-2.0% of adolescents and young adult women have some form of anorexia nervosa/bulimia. Eating disorders can wreck havoc on the human body, causing stomach problems, heart problems, malnutriton, plus dental disease.

Rampant decay

Anorexics and bulimics are prone to widespread cavities over a short period of time. Those who binge on high-calorie, high-carb foods, and then purge run the greatest risk of decay. The sugar in the foods set up an acid-attack on the enamel, while the act of purging bathes the teeth in hydrochloric acid from the stomach, contributing to decay, as well as eroding teeth and fillings. A chronic bulimic will need numerous fillings on a regular basis and will have eroded enamel on the tongue-side of the teeth.

Soft tissue damage

Due to repeated vomiting, anorexics and bulimics may have severely swollen tonsils or soft palate. Some people may suffer a swelling and redness of the tongue and the palate may have lacerations from fingernails used to induce vomiting.

Care

First and foremost, if you suffer from an eating disorder, seek professional help immediately. Eating disorders can have fatal consequences. Secondly, let your dental hygienist know about your eating disorder in order to insure proper treatment.

Anorexics and bulimics MUST use scrupulous homecare in order to keep their teeth. Extra brushing, flossing, and possible at-home fluoride treatments may be necessary, plus you may also require additional cleaning visits throughout the year.