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.

Say "I Do" to Your Dentist

Feb 8th, 2010
Easton Dentists Mar 1st, 2017

While Valentine’s Day is fast approaching, so too is wedding season. Many a bride has dreamed of this day – wearing an elaborate white gown and staring into the eyes of their beloved. However, many of those dreams have been turned into a nightmare – gaps, discolored teeth, and uneven smiles have caused many brides to panic.

Relax. The wedding of your dreams doesn’t have to be a nightmare. From new whitening techniques to restorative dental work, the smile of your dreams is within your reach come your wedding day.

A whiter smile is the top request of brides.  There are many tiers of tooth whitening available today, but know that the darker your teeth, the more help they need. Over-the-counter whitening strips are a good option if your teeth are already white. But if you have significant discoloration, or discoloration on the sides of the teeth, these strips likely will not be sufficient. The next step is usually take-home whitening trays or laser whitening, which may be a better option for significant whitening that needs to be done in a short period of time.

Restoring broken, chipped, cracked or stained teeth is another common request. Bonding can improve the appearance of teeth that are chipped, broken, cracked, stained or have spaces between them. With bonding, tooth-colored materials are applied, or bonded, to the tooth surface. This simple, non-invasive conservative procedure can also close spaces.

Veneers are another popular choice. These thin, custom-made shells cover the front side of teeth, and can be used to treat spaces between teeth and teeth that are chipped or worn, permanently stained, poorly shaped or slightly crooked. Crowns may be needed if porcelain veneers won’t do the trick.

Cosmetic dentists can correct minor defects in the shape and appearance of a tooth through a process referred to as tooth contouring or tooth reshaping, which is, essentially like filing your nails.

Regardless of what procedure you choose, make sure your dentist is skilled in cosmetic dentistry.

Is Tooth Whitening for You?

Nov 9th, 2009
Easton Dentists Mar 1st, 2017

The hot topic in the dental world these days is tooth whitening. The long and the short of it is that teeth whitening works. Virtually everyone who opts for this cosmetic treatment will see moderate to substantial improvement in the brightness and whiteness of their smile.

Typically, age, eating habits, smoking, tooth grinding, and trauma are associated with tooth discoloration. The majority of patients say that tooth whitening not only improves their appearance, but also their outlook – they say they feel like they look younger and more polished.

Bleaching versus Whitening

According to the FDA, the term “bleaching” is used only when the teeth can be whitened beyond their natural color. This applies strictly to products that contain bleach – typically hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide.

Meanwhile, “whitening,” restores a tooth’s surface color by removing dirt and debris. So any product that cleans (like a toothpaste) is considered a whitener. Of course, the term whitening sounds better than bleaching, so it is more frequently used – even when describing products that contain bleach.

Significant color change in a short period of time is the major benefit of in-office whitening. This involves the carefully controlled use of a relatively high-concentration peroxide gel, applied to the teeth by the dentist or trained technician after the gums have been protected with a paint-on rubber dam. Generally, the peroxide remains on the teeth for several 15 to 20 minute intervals that add up to an hour (at most).

Those with particularly stubborn staining may be advised to return for one or more additional bleaching sessions, or may be asked to continue with a home-use whitening system.

In-office teeth whitening cost: $650 per visit is the national average.