Posts for: August, 2016

By Today's Dental
August 19, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: sedation dentistry  

Visiting the dentist for cleanings, checkups and needed dental work is one of the pillars of dental health, along with daily hygiene and a nutritious diet. But an estimated 50% of people have some form of anxiety about dental visits — and around 15% actually avoid care because of it.

If you feel nervous about dental visits, there are ways to reduce your anxiety. First and foremost is to find a compassionate provider you trust and feel comfortable around, who listens non-judgmentally to your concerns.

But that's only the beginning: depending on your degree of anxiety, you could require more help to relax through sedation medication. The drugs and methods used can induce various degrees of consciousness ranging from mild relaxation to more sleep-like states.

The most basic is oral sedation. Typically, this involves taking the medication by mouth about an hour before an appointment. You can take it by itself to increase relaxation or along with other forms of sedation (like inhaling nitrous oxide gas) or local anesthesia.

Beyond inhalation, a higher level of sedation involves injecting the medication into the blood stream through an intravenous (IV) drip. This induces a deeper “semi-awake” level of consciousness, but differs from general anesthesia, which places a patient into unconsciousness to block pain during a major procedure. With IV sedation you may still be able to respond to verbal commands or touch; and although you're monitored for vital signs you won't need medical assistance to maintain breathing and heart function.

With today's advanced sedation drugs and methods, we can control dosages to achieve just the right level of sedation, as well as reduce the amount of time the drug may affect you afterward in recovery. Many drugs also have an amnesiac effect so that you'll remember little if any about the procedure afterward.

Whether by mouth, inhalation or with an IV, sedation therapy can make a difference no matter what your level of anxiety. And if your dental visits continue to be comfortable and pleasant ones, you're more likely to receive the care you need to keep your teeth and gums healthy.

If you would like more information on sedation methods during dental care, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “IV Sedation in Dentistry.”

By Today’s Dental
August 16, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: Toothache  

Find out what causes dental pain and why you should seek proper treatment.

We can probably all agree that if we are in pain something is not right. And if your mouth is experiencing pain and discomfort, there has Tooth Acheto be a reason for it. Pain usually doesn’t show up without a reason. If you are experiencing a toothache find out why you should call one of our Houston dentists Dr. Tiberiu Oancea or Dr. Jeromy Thornton right away.

You have a toothache

This is one of the biggest warning signs of a problem. While having a piece of food stuck between your teeth can cause some discomfort if you are experiencing a sharp pain, especially when chewing, then you need to visit our Houston general dentist right away. This is often a sign of severe decay or an infection, and these problems won’t go away on their own.

You are noticing bleeding gums

It isn’t normal for your gums to bleed. If you see some blood while flossing then it means that you either need to revamp your oral care routine so you’re doing a more thorough job or you may already have gum disease. If you notice bleeding gums it’s not a bad idea to call us as soon as possible to get a proper dental cleaning and to check for other signs of gum disease.

You have a dark or permanently stained tooth

While most stains caused by coffee, soda and wine are only on the surface and can easily be treated with our whitening system, if the stain doesn’t go away then it’s time to talk to us. Brown or black spots can be signs of a cavity, while red or blue stains could mean the tooth has a severe crack.

You have a loose or damaged tooth

A cracked, crumbling or loose tooth is warning you of some serious physical concerns. Often times, this problem can be due to teeth grinding, but there are other variables for why you might be dealing with a weak or damaged tooth. Fortunately, your Houston, TX family dentist is here to help.

Dental pain is nothing to ignore. Don’t let these problems get worse. Call Today’s Dental in Houston, TX right away to handle all of your dental needs.

By Today's Dental
August 04, 2016
Category: Oral Health

Can you have healthy teeth and still have gum disease? Absolutely! And if you don’t believe us, just ask actor David Ramsey. The cast member of TV hits such as Dexter and Arrow said in a recent interview that up to the present day, he has never had a single cavity. Yet at a routine dental visit during his college years, Ramsey’s dentist pointed out how easily his gums bled during the exam. This was an early sign of periodontal (gum) disease, the dentist told him.

“I learned that just because you don’t have cavities, doesn’t mean you don’t have periodontal disease,” Ramsey said.

Apparently, Ramsey had always been very conscientious about brushing his teeth but he never flossed them.

“This isn’t just some strange phenomenon that exists just in my house — a lot of people who brush don’t really floss,” he noted.

Unfortunately, that’s true — and we’d certainly like to change it. So why is flossing so important?

Oral diseases such as tooth decay and periodontal disease often start when dental plaque, a bacteria-laden film that collects on teeth, is allowed to build up. These sticky deposits can harden into a substance called tartar or calculus, which is irritating to the gums and must be removed during a professional teeth cleaning.

Brushing teeth is one way to remove soft plaque, but it is not effective at reaching bacteria or food debris between teeth. That’s where flossing comes in. Floss can fit into spaces that your toothbrush never reaches. In fact, if you don’t floss, you’re leaving about a third to half of your tooth surfaces unclean — and, as David Ramsey found out, that’s a path to periodontal disease.

Since then, however, Ramsey has become a meticulous flosser, and he proudly notes that the long-ago dental appointment “was the last we heard of any type of gum disease.”

Let that be the same for you! Just remember to brush and floss, eat a good diet low in sugar, and come in to the dental office for regular professional cleanings.

If you would like more information on flossing or periodontal disease, please contact us today to schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Understanding Gum (Periodontal) Disease.”