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dental veneers Chattanooga TN cosmetic dentist

Dental Veneers: What They Are and How to Take Care of Them

A great smile can be positively life-changing. Taking good care of our teeth helps, but cosmetic dentistry procedures like dental veneers can take us “over the goal line”, as the saying goes. In this month’s blog, we look at reasons for getting dental veneers, some of which go beyond merely cosmetic considerations.

Veneers Mask Stained Teeth

Dental Veneers are the next step after unsuccessful teeth whitening

When teeth whitening fails to completely decrease stains and discoloration, dental veneers become the recommended cosmetic dentistry procedure. The thin wafer of porcelain becomes bonded to camouflage the actual color, shape, or position of the existing tooth. All cosmetic procedures work best when they enhance your smile rather than radically change it. You want people to notice the positive change but remain puzzled as to what was done. The smile should improve without appearing fake.

Porcelain Veneers Can Fix Teeth that are Damaged and Worn Down

Veneer Teeth Address Chipped Teeth

Veneers can be done to one tooth (as in, say, repairing a single chipped tooth after tripping and falling) or a group of teeth, depending on your needs and budget. Veneers also support natural teeth that have been weakened or compromised by broken or old fillings.

Dental Veneers Fix Teeth Gaps and Crooked Teeth

Veneers and crowns are methods of fixing gaps in teeth, along with dental bonding, implants, dentures, retainer/orthodontics, braces, and teeth gap bands. The differences between Crowns and Veneers? Both involve the bonding a thin porcelain shell to teeth with the goal of fitting properly and looking natural. Whereas veneers bond to the front of the tooth, dental crowns fit OVER most of a tooth. The term “bridge” refers to a type of crown to fix several teeth at once.

Another distinction: Veneers primarily address cosmetic needs, creating a uniform look. Crowns, in contrast, usually fix broken/cracked teeth caused by some sort of trauma or decay. You may also see the term “Lumineers,” which refers to a brand of veneers that are thinner than traditional veneers. 

Dental Veneers Improve Strength and Resilience

It’s pretty amazing that veneers have the durability to withstand years of wear and tear (while repelling stains) even though they are composed of the thinnest dental porcelain. Ideally, when shopping for a dentist nearby to add dental veneers, you’re able to ask a former patient who had the procedure a decade before if he or she remains happy with the results. Sometimes you can use a person’s Facebook photo gallery as a way of seeing before and after photos to at least get a sense of the cosmetic benefits of dental veneers.

What to Know Before Getting Dental Veneers

Veneers are an Irreversible Procedure

The natural enamel of your teeth gets eaten away by years of consuming acidic foods and drinks. Lost enamel does not grow back, but veneers can serve as a treatment for enamel abrasion and enamel erosion. Because we remove a portion of the outer layer of enamel on a tooth before bonding veneer teeth (for the purposes of a snug fit), the procedure cannot be reversed.

Let your dentist know about other cosmetic procedures you’re planning

Perhaps veneers are just one part of cosmetic enhancements you have planned. It’s important to discuss these with your cosmetic dentist because other forms of facial plastic surgery can negative what we are trying to accomplish. Lip injections, for example, can cast a shadow over teeth, making them appear gray. To find the perfect shade of grey for veneers, to match other teeth and appear natural, some dentists use a person’s skin tone to customize the shade that looks best. 

How Much Do Dental Veneers Cost?

Affordability can be a factor in deciding whether to get this procedure done, as it is generally great to get but not usually essential. You should talk to your dentist to get all of the information needed to decide whether dental veneers are an investment that will make a positive change in your life. Factors affecting price can include the experience level of the dentist and how many veneers you get at one time. Incorrect placement can lead to requiring several trips to a dentist to have improperly placed veneers fixed. You also need to consider whether your dental insurance plan covers any part of the cost of veneers since they are a cosmetic procedure. We are happy to give you a quote when you call (423) 238-8887 to set up an appointment with Dr. Keith Tedford.

How to Take Care of Dental Veneers

Veneers are Resistant to Chips and Cracks, but…

Once you have your veneers, you should avoid gnawing on ice or using your teeth to open packages. Barring any accident impacting the mouth, you should not experience any breakage or damage to your veneers, even under the daily pressures of biting and chewing food. While there may be some increased sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures for the first few days after a procedure, this usually does not last. Drinking a hot coffee or eating a cold bowl of ice cream should not produce any noticeable effect on your veneers.  

Maintain Preventive Dental Care

To keep your veneers in top shape, keep up with regular visits to your dentist twice a year and be sure to brush and floss daily. You don’t want to develop any cavities because they can compromise the integrity of the veneers. If you’re going to go to this much effort to improve your smile, we’re sure that you probably don’t need too much reminding to take basic care of your oral health.

Dental Veneers to Achieve the Smile of Your Dreams

Veneers can make a big impact on the quality of your smile. Because the procedure is irreversible, you definitely want to put some forethought into the work that is to be done and the desired outcome. We encourage you to use this information when researching whether to pursue veneers for yourself. Learn more about our Cosmetic Dentistry in Ooltewah, TN, then call us at (423) 238-8887 to set up an appointment with Dr. Keith Tedford.

Copyright: subbotina / 123RF Stock Photo

Written by Steven Stiefel

professional teeth whitening ooltewah tnA bride or groom feeling self-conscious about their smile may ask a wedding photographer to use Photoshop for the illusion of having white teeth in their wedding photos. Perhaps you’ve adjusted the settings on Instagram to hide a yellow tinge in your own smile before sharing a social media post. In real life, we can’t hide behind layers of pixels. Every time we encounter someone face-to-face, they see our teeth and recognize whether the enamel is yellowed or stained.

If you’ve worried about the appearance of your smile, perhaps you’ve researched how to whiten your teeth at home. Maybe you’ve wondered “how much does professional teeth whitening cost?” without ever following through to find out. But while the Internet may offer lots of ways to cut corners and save money, including home remedies for removing plaque naturally, you may not want to experiment with unqualified advice off the web about do-it-yourself bleaching yours with chemicals that may not even do anything.

Cosmetic services by a professional dentist, on the other hand, come with the expectation that procedures for teeth whitening to decrease such discoloration will be safely performed and prove effective, leading to better results and, in turn, more self-confidence.

In this month's blog, Tedford Family Dentistry (which offers teeth whitening at our Ooltewah TN dentist office) wants to shed some light on real solutions to this common issue.

What’s the Best way to Whiten Teeth?

Does Baking Soda Whiten Teeth?

There is some merit to the idea of brushing with baking soda because it contains natural whitening properties, adds alkaline to your mouth that deters bacteria growth, and it is a mild abrasive so brushing with it can work sort of like buffing away stains while scrubbing your tub clean.

Studies of toothpaste containing baking soda do suggest some whitening occurs, although there’s no proof that it makes you ready for your close-up overnight. 

Does hydrogen peroxide whiten teeth?

If you are considering peroxide teeth whitening, you might experience more success if you ask your dentist to mold a gel tray to your mouth. Most of the products on pharmacy shelves are made to fit most mouths rather than being a snug fit for more optimal results.

Mixing hydrogen peroxide heavily diluted with mouthwash may help overall with oral hygiene because of its ability to kill bacteria. But be careful to avoid strong concentrations or overuse, which may result in irritation or increased tooth sensitivity.

Some other supposed natural teeth whitening methods include eating pineapples, mixing baking soda with strawberries, drinking apple cider vinegar, using activated charcoal, Kaolin clay, fruit peels, but there’s no scientific evidence these substances work effectively and are safe. In fact, excessive use could actually damage teeth. A diet high in fruits and vegetables is good for you, but don’t expect to wake up with a dazzling white smile after eating some the night before and remember that berries can stain teeth. 

Some solutions may only clean stains on the surface of teeth but not last long. Discontinue using any home remedies or commercially-available whiteners if you experience serious tooth sensitivity. To reduce the risk of using unsafe products, we recommend you look for the American Dental Association’s Seal of Acceptance.

Consider a Professional Teeth Whitening Treatment

During professionally applied treatments, dentists may use higher concentrations of bleaching solutions that aren’t available in over-the-counter products, but you have the comfort of knowing that procedures are done under supervision with protective steps taken before we begin.

Discoloration involves increased visibility of Dentin, a yellowish tissue under the enamel of a tooth, over time. Thinning of the enamel is a root cause of discoloration, so it’s wise to involve your dentist in the solution. Regular cleanings at the dentist’s office prevent the build-up of plaque. Keep on a schedule to stop plaque build-up. The best approach for whitening teeth at home may be to stay persistent in regular brushing and flossing.

The Bottom Line: It Can Take Weeks to Notice Results

When trying to get whiter teeth, patience is needed. It's dangerous to risk a “quick fix” solution in search of expediency. You need to talk to your dentist before trying any of the things we've covered here. He or she could save you time and money, along with protecting your gums from chemical oversaturation.

Take Action to Prevent further Tooth Stains

Whitening won’t be a major problem if you limit exposure to the things that stain teeth in the first place, like coffee, red wine, sodas, and dark berries. Avoid smoking and chewing tobacco too. Some changes to your diet can also help things along. Foods with calcium can help protect teeth erosion while eating less sugar can lead to less plaque buildup on teeth.

It’s understandable that we want to present a gorgeous white smile that communicates health and good hygiene, but we need to be careful and avoid risking damage from chemical remedies that aren’t proven to work. The best thing for patients to be is to be patient and not expect overnight results. Meanwhile, make some dietary changes, limit exposure to staining foods and beverages, and keep brushing and flossing daily to help see improvement.

Talk to your dentist before you try whitening your teeth with chemical solutions at home. Saving a little money, but correcting damage caused by careless use may cost more in the long run. 

Copyright: puhhha / 123RF Stock Photo Written by Steven Stiefel

dentists near collegedale tnDoes your mouth bleed when you brush your teeth? Noticing plaque and tartar above the gumline? Gingivitis, an inflammation of the gums, appears as the first sign of someone at risk for periodontal disease.

At some point, a dentist has no doubt warned you about it before, but you should take gum health seriously. If left unchecked, a domino effect of oral damage progresses, often resulting in the loss of one’s teeth and increased risk of serious health conditions, including heart disease, stroke, diabetes, respiratory infections, and other afflictions. Preventing that from happening is worth 3 to 5 minutes of your time, twice a day, right?

A survey reported in the Journal of the American Dental Association found that a majority of adults have gingivitis. This suggests that people aren’t taking good enough care of their teeth beyond occasional cleanings with their dentist. With that in mind, our dentists near Collegedale TN offer 5 ways to stop gum disease and the damage caused by gingivitis:

Brush Twice, Floss Once



The American Dental Association recommends taking the time to brush your teeth in the morning and before bedtime. Flossing should happen during one of those cleaning sessions at home. It’s easy to forget or disregard if you’re in a hurry, but we should make oral health an important part of our daily routine.

Pay More Attention to the Gumline While Brushing



Gingivitis starts with plaque accumulating around the gumline. People often neglect the gums when brushing, but you can easily attack both areas at the same time by angling your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle. You might also occasionally “scrape” the tongue with your toothbrush to remove bacteria and toxins.

Keep Your Toothbrush Germ Free



Brushing daily won’t have as much positive impact if we store our toothbrushes in moist environments that promote the growth of germs. Store in the upright position if possible. Possibly alternate between 2 toothbrushes so one can completely dry while the other is used.

Examine Your Nutrition and Lifestyle



Getting at least 800 milligrams daily of Calcium, known to strengthen bones, can reduce the chances of developing gum disease (which may eventually loosen teeth), according to a study from the State University of New York at Buffalo. The National Institute of Health recommends a daily dose of 100 to 200 milligrams of Vitamin C to check bleeding gums. Studies suggest Vitamin D shows anti-inflammatory benefits, which may reduce bleeding between the gums. Excessive smoking and drinking drain the body of vitamins and minerals. Raw vegetables clean and stimulate teeth and gums. Stress and exposure to toxic chemicals can also contribute to oral decay.

Use a Mouthwash After Brushing



A study in the Journal of Clinical Periodontology suggests that mouthwash containing the chemicals cetylpridinium chloride or domiphen bromide inhibited the development of plaque and reduced gingivitis. Listerine, for example.

Tedford Family Dentistry in Ooltewah offers preventive dentistry to help stop gum disease and other oral health risks. To learn more about our full preventive dentistry services and doing your part at home to fight gingivitis, visit http://tedfordfamilydentistry.com/dental-services-ooltewah-tn/preventive-dentistry-ooltewah-tn

Copyright: fsstock / 123RF Stock Photo

Written by Steven Stiefel

 

If you are new to an area or looking for a new dentist, you may ask yourself, Siri or Alexa: "How do I find the best dentist near me?".  

Oddly, finding a dentist is sometimes one of the last things people look into when they move to a new area.  They find their dry cleaner, child's school, family doctor and favorite restaurants before their dentist.  However, seeing a dentist can be very important to your overall health.  There are many things to consider when searching for a new dentist.  Below are a few things to consider.

Google Searches for Dentists

If you use Google to research "dentists near me",  Google will provide you with a screen filled with options split into 3 sections. 

  1. Typically, the top section of the screen (above the maps box) is paid ads.  Those dentists pay a fee for each click to be listed at the top of the screen, and it may not always reflect on the reputation of the dental practice. 

  2. The next section of the options is what is called Google Maps.  Here you can view dentists by proximity to your device, and you can read reviews about the dentists nearby.
     
  3. Below the maps, is a listing of additional dentists that is called organic search.  

Online Reviews

Google Reviews and other 3rd party review sites are a good, unbiased way to learn about a dentist and how their patients feel about the staff, overall experience and more.  Third party sites publish all reviews - the good, the bad and the ugly.  Consumers know the reviews are legitimate.  That is why 8 out of 10 consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. 

Dentist Websites

Research the dentists' websites to make sure that they offer services that meet your needs.  Some dentists specialize in certain areas, while others may offer a wide range of services that meet the needs of your entire family -- from pediatric dentistry to senior dental services.  You might also learn about their staff and informative blog posts.

Recommendation from Friends & Family

You trust your friends and family, and they might be able to recommend a really good dentist.  However, you'll still want to do some basic research to make sure their recommendation meets your needs as far as specific services beyond standard teeth cleaning.

Professional Dental Organizations

Check to be sure that the dentist near you is part of professional dental organizations such as the ADA, Academy of General Dentistry and the Dawson Alumni Association - Dedicated to Complete Care Dentistry.

After you have done your research, and have been to visit the dentist for the first time, you can ask yourself questions such as:

  • Did I feel comfortable during my visit?
  • Was everything explained clearly to me?
  • Was there justification for each procedure?
  • Was the dentist wearing loupes (surgical telescopes)?

If all went well, you should feel confident that you did indeed "find the best dentist near me".

 

 

Copyright: maxpro / 123RF Stock Photo
“We’ll see you in six months for your next cleaning!” If you’ve been hearing that line from your Ooltewah dentist for as long as you can remember, you might never have stopped to question it. Or perhaps you’re one of those patients who knows they should stick to that six month appointment schedule, but find that life or anxiety gets in the way. Either way, there are several very good reasons why we hope you stick to this teeth cleaning schedule-- and it’s not just because we miss you.

You might wonder why you need to get your teeth cleaned twice a year. After all, there aren’t that many other things you have to do semi-annually-- besides certain sales at the mall, adjusting your clocks for daylight savings time, changing the batteries in your smoke detector, and get your car serviced. But just like those other matters of routine maintenance, your teeth need regular attention, too.

Even if you are a champ about brushing twice a day, flossing, and rinsing with mouthwash, you still need a proper cleaning to stay ahead of the plaque that can cause gingivitis and gum disease. Even if you never eat sugary foods and drink fluoridated water, you need to check in and make sure that no periodontal conditions are running rampant in your mouth. We want to see you every six months so that you can hopefully avoid more serious visits, like having to schedule a root canal or a tooth extraction.

Just like you want to change the oil in your car every few thousand miles to keep the engine in peak condition (and to avoid an unexpected trip to the mechanic) we want to give your teeth a tuneup. It’s easy to think that a serious dental condition will never happen to you-- especially if it never has thanks to genetics, good luck, and those regular teeth cleanings we keep on about. But without those semiannual appointments, you could be giving bacteria and plaque many extra months in your mouth, which could make them harder to evict.

If all that gunk really makes itself at home, you could be looking at tooth decay and gum disease. If those conditions progress to a severe point, you could be affecting your overall health beyond your mouth. Dental diseases can not only spread to your tooth roots and jaw bone, but even impact your heart health.

As the old saying goes, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Your twice-a-year dental cleanings might not be the favorite item on your calendar, but they’re pretty important. And if it’s been a little (or a lot!) longer than six months, another old saying applies, too. It’s better to see your dentist late than never. So give us a call at Tedford Family Dentistry in Ooltewah TN today so we can give your teeth the attention they’re due.
Monday, 18 December 2017 14:07

Cosmetic Mouthwash vs. Therapeutic Mouthwash

tedford dentist ooltewah tennessee mouth careDid you know there is more than one type of mouthwash? Cosmetic mouthwashes will address short term bad breath, while therapeutic mouthwashes are designed to address numerous dental concerns that can improve your oral health. Whichever type you pick, you’ll find there are plenty of reasons to reach for some type of mouthwash next time you’re are the store. Perhaps you’re on your way to a job interview or a date and are worried about your breath smelling fresh. Or you’re worried that flossing isn’t going far enough in your quest to get rid of plaque. Maybe your dentist told you to take an extra step to prevent gingivitis and tooth decay. Or maybe you’ve had a toothache, and you’re looking for a little extra relief.

Whatever your reason for wanting to swish, you don’t need to feel limited to a minty concoction with a harsh burn. Not only are there two main categories of mouthwash, there are many brands and flavors now on the market. Which one you choose depends on your dental health needs, price point, and what tastes you like. But here are few ingredients to look out for that might help you narrow down the playing field:

Therapeutic mouthwashes tend to contain ingredients including:

    • cetylpyridinium chloride
    • Chlorhexidine
    • essential oils
    • Fluoride
    • Peroxide

Cetylpyridinium chloride sounds like something out of chemistry class, but it’s not so complicated. It’s simply an antiseptic that kills bacteria in your mouth, including those that cause odor. Instead of simply covering up odors on your breath, this ingredient tackles the cause, and can help kill bacteria in hard to reach places after you brush or floss.

Chlorhexidine and essential oils can both be used to combat plaque and gingivitis. The main difference is that chlorhexidine can only be obtained by prescription. That’s because it’s so good at killing bacteria it’s also an ingredient in surgical hand scrub! Certain essential oils can also have antimicrobial properties, without killing good bacteria and while providing a tasty flavor.

Fluoride is a familiar ingredient you might recognize from your toothpaste package. It helps protect your tooth enamel by helping to repel acids, sugars, and bacteria in the mouth before they can cause trouble. You should wait for at least 30 minutes after using a fluoride product to give the ingredient a chance to reach maximum protective effectiveness.

Peroxide is also a way to disinfect your mouth, but it doesn’t have the harsh burn that many associate with alcohol-based mouthwashes. Not only can it help kill bacteria around your teeth and gums, it can also sooth mouth ulcers.

Keep in mind that children under 7 should brush their teeth and learn good flossing habits, but they shouldn’t use mouthwash because their swallow skills might not be developed enough to keep them from ingesting some of the product. Mouthwash is great in your mouth, but it’s not so great in your stomach!

If you still feel overwhelmed by the options, talk to your dentists and dental hygienists at Tedford Dentistry! We’d be happy to help you find a product that keeps your teeth clean and your mouth healthy that is just right for your smile. Whether you’re tackling a specific periodontal condition or just want to keep your whites bright and your breath smelling great, we’ll point you in the right direction.

Wednesday, 29 November 2017 14:12

9 Tips for Denture Care

Ooltewah Affordable Denture CareBelow are some simple, general tips from our Ooltewah dentist to keep your dentures, either complete or partial dentures, in good shape.

When you visit with Dr. Tedford, he will make recommendations on the best denture solutions for you.

1. Take Your Dentures Out Daily.
If possible, take your dentures out while you sleep. If this is not a good option for you, take them out for 6 to 8 hours a day during another time period. This will give your mouth tissues time to recover.

2. Help Retain Your Dentures Shape

Place your dentures in warm water (or a denture cleanser solution), when they are not being worn, to help retain the denture's shape, remain pliable and keeps it from drying out. Dentures should never be placed in hot water, which could cause them to warp.

3. Clean Your Dentures Daily

Like natural teeth, dentures must be cleaned daily to remove food particles, tartar and bacteria, and to help prevent dentures from becoming permanently stained.

Commercial denture cleansers for removable dentures come as tablets, creams, pastes, gels and solutions. The first step in cleaning dentures is to rinse away loose food particles and remove any denture adhesive.

Denture cleanser tablets are dropped into warm water to create an effervescent solution. Dentures are removed from the mouth and placed in the solution. Soaking dentures in the cleaning solution helps kill germs that can cause odor. The amount of time dentures should be soaked—from a few minutes to overnight—depends on the manufacturer’s instructions.

Denture cleansing creams, pastes or gels are brushed on the denture after it is removed from the mouth and then rinsed off, according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Denture cleansers should not be used while dentures are still in the mouth.

Dentures can also be cleaned with toothpaste or soap—mild hand soap or dishwashing liquid—warm water and a soft-bristle toothbrush. However, denture wearers should never use bleach or powdered household cleansers, which can be abrasive, for cleaning their appliance as this may damage the denture.

4. Find Out if You Need Denture Adhesives

A film of saliva typically helps hold dentures in place. Denture adhesives may be used if the salivary glands do not produce a sufficient amount of saliva. Denture adhesives are not, however, a remedy for ill-fitting dentures. A denture that fits poorly (i.e., feels loose or causes discomfort) may need to be relined or replaced as it can contribute to the development of mouth sores.

Denture adhesives, also called denture adherents, are creams, powders, wafers or strips that are used to hold dentures firmly in place. The adhesive also helps form a seal that keeps food particles from sticking between the dentures and gums. Adhesive is applied to clean dentures, which are then positioned in the mouth and held in place for a few seconds, according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

During denture cleaning, adhesive should be removed with gentle scrubbing to prevent contamination.

5. Look After Your Whole Mouth

You still need to care for your gums, even with complete dentures. When you take out your dentures, give your mouth a good rinse and then massage your gums with a washcloth or a soft toothbrush. If you have partial dentures, you still need to properly brush and floss your regular teeth every day.

6. See Your Dentist
You still need to see your dentist at least once a year. Dr, Tedford will examine your oral tissues for changes and for sores that might become cancerous and he will also provide advice as to oral hygiene and denture care.

7. Watch for Changes in Fit
If your dentures aren’t fitting properly or don’t feel right, please check in with Dr. Tedford, your Ooltewah Dentist. He may be able to adjust your dentures
or recommend a solution. The gums and bones in our mouths change over time, which can lead to an improper denture fit. Poorly fitting dentures can cause problems like sores, pain and burning and may be a sign of periodontal disease.

8. Nourish Your Body
Be sure to be eating a balanced diet. Research suggests that proper nutrition slows the progress of gum disease, so a healthier diet could even mean a healthier mouth.

9. Use ADA Approved Products

A company earns the ADA Seal of Acceptance by producing scientific evidence that demonstrates the safety and efficacy of its product, which the ADA Council on Scientific Affairs carefully evaluates according to objective requirements.

Look for the ADA Seal—your assurance that the product has been objectively evaluated for safety and efficacy by an independent body of scientific experts, the ADA Council on Scientific Affairs.

For more information, please contact our dental office in Ooltewah TN at (423) 238-8887.
Wednesday, 31 May 2017 19:45

Should I Go to the Dentist If I’m Sick?

You may be asking yourself this question if you have a dentist appointment but are feeling a bit under the weather. As many dental appointments can be difficult to reschedule, you might find yourself uncertain of what to do. To cancel or not to cancel? Here’s a guide on whether you should cancel your appointment if you’re sick.

How Sick Am I?

The first thing you must decide is, “How sick am I?” The type of ailment, depending on your symptoms, can greatly affect your appointment. You must evaluate the severity of your sickness, and the level of pain and discomfort. Patients who are unable to sit still through an appointment should consider rescheduling.

Am I Contagious?

Contagious? If you don’t want to infect others, always reschedule.

However, you might not always know if you are contagious. If you are coughing or sneezing, you may have a common cold, a virus, or maybe even the flu. In this case, you should carefully listen to your symptoms.

Even if you are no longer sick, but have been feeling under the weather over the past several days, you might still be carrying the virus. Studies report that carriers can remain contagious to others for up to one week.

What Should I Do If I Keep My Dentist Appointment If I’m Sick?

In the event that you are experiencing congestion, let our Tedford Family Dentistry staff know. Patients who often have trouble breathing through their nose may also struggle through dental procedures, as their mouth is occupied at times during treatments or exams. If you choose to keep your dental appointment, always communicate to your hygienist, dental assistant, or Dr. Tedford, if or when you experience any discomfort during your visit.

Cancelling My Dentist Appointment

Whether you have a dental emergency or are getting a routine checkup, as a general rule of thumb, we recommend that patients only cancel an appointment in the event of an emergency (sickness included).

While the majority of dental offices understand the need to cancel at times, we do urge you to keep your appointment to avoid any unnecessary cancellation fees. Plus, rescheduling appointments may take time, depending on availability.

If you are sick or contagious, contact our office today and ask us about our policy for these situations. It’s likely we’ll reschedule you for a different date. Get well soon!

Thursday, 20 April 2017 14:49

5 Step Oral Cancer Self-Examination

Self Examine Oral CancerSince April is Oral Cancer Awareness month, it is important to set aside a few minutes to regularly check your gums, tongue, and mouth for any abnormalities. It is especially important to perform these routine checks if your family has a history with oral cancers. Take the time to perform these 5 oral self-examinations at home because you never know, what takes only a minute could save your life.

1. Examine your tongue for anything strange in appearance, such as darker spots. Next, touch the tip of your tongue to the top of your mouth. Examine the underside of your tongue and the pallet under the tongue. Both should be consistent in surface and shading.

2. Examine the top of your mouth, feeling with your tongue or fingertips. To make this easier, tilt your head backwards and check the roof of your mouth for color or texture changes on the surface.

3. Visually examine your cheeks using a mirror and lifting cheeks outward. Look for discoloration, and shaded splotches. Next, examine the gums of your cheek. With one finger resting on gums and one outside of the cheek, use a circular pinch motion to examine for sensitivity or masses.

4. Examine your neck and head for unevenness, bulging, or swelling. Applying moderate pressure, slide your fingertips around your neck, jaw line, and lymph nodes.

5. Examine your lips for any extreme changes in color or persistent sores, lesions, blisters, ulcers, and lumps. Note: sores are not always an indication of lip cancer. Since the lips are prominent and visible, lesions can be seen and identified easily. This allows for early diagnosis.

To prevent oral cancers, avoid smoking cigarettes and tobacco, reduce your alcohol consumption, minimize sun exposure, eat a healthy, balanced diet, and wear an SPF lip balm. If you are interested in learning more about oral cancer awareness, consult with Dr. Tedford or primary healthcare physician.

 
This website is designed for general patient educational and information purposes only and does not render medical advice or professional services, unless we otherwise indicate. The information provided through this website should not be used for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease. It is not a substitute for professional health care, and is designed to support - not replace - the relationship you have with your health care provider. If you have or suspect you may have a health problem, you should consult your health care provider. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or emergency medical services immediately.

Root Canal xray Ooltewah

Two words: root canal. These words often come with a chill, followed by jaw clenching, and phantom tooth pain. While the procedure has gained a bad rap among the general population, root canal treatments have significantly improved through the years with advancement in technology. In an attempt to bring awareness to Root Canal Week, March 27 - April 2, we hope to answer your endless endodontic questions on root canals.

When is a root canal needed?

If your Ooltewah dentist or endodontic specialist recommends root canal treatment, you may have inflammation, infection, or an abscess, resulting from deep decay, a cracked or chipped tooth, or injury. Root canal treatments are needed to save a tooth after the soft tissue inside the root canal, known as the pulp, becomes inflamed or infected.

What are the symptoms for necessary endodontic treatment?

Symptoms include: tooth pain, extreme sensitivity to touch, chewing, and temperatures (hot or cold), tooth discoloration, inflammation and swelling, and excessive drainage of lymph nodes. In some cases, the listed effects may or may not be visible; sometimes, there are no symptoms at all. Consult your Ooltewah dentist for further examination if you are experiencing one or more of these symptoms.

What steps are involved in the procedure?

Step 1.Following an examination and x-rays, a local anesthetic will be administered to numb the inflamed or infected tooth. Next, a small “dental dam” is placed over the tooth area to keep it clean during the procedure.

Step 2. A small opening is made in the crown of the tooth. Using minimally invasive instruments, the pulp from the chamber is cleaned which makes room in the canal for filling.

Step 3. Once cleaned, the root canal is then filled with a rubbery, thermoplastic material called gutta-percha, which is placed with an adhesive cement to ensure a proper seal of the root canals. A temporary filling is often placed to close the opening, and later removed by your dentist.

Step 4. On your final visit, a crown is placed on top of the tooth, which is used to restore to original function.

Ask your Ooltewah dentist at Tedford Family Dentistry for more details about the specific restoration process, and how root canal treatments can keep your smile beautiful and bright!

Ooltewah Root Canal
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