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Posts for: August, 2017

By Comprehensive Dental Care
August 25, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: root canal  

Could this endodontic procedure be exactly what you need to turn your smile around?root canal

We know that no one really likes the idea of a root canal, but sometimes it’s necessary in order to save a tooth and to protect your smile from permanent damage. From the office of our West Hartford, CT, family dentists, find out when root canal therapy might be necessary for you.

What is a root canal?

When your West Hartford, CT, dentists talk about a root canal they are talking about the dental pulp and the roots of the tooth. The dental pulp is an internal structure that lies inside the tooth, which contains nerves and connective tissue. When the health of the pulp is affected it can lead to pain and sensitivity to heat and cold.

Why does someone need to undergo root canal treatment?

There are several reasons why root canal pain develops. If you have decay that reaches the inside of the tooth this can cause an inflamed dental pulp. You may also need root canal therapy if a traumatic injury has led to a deep crack or chip in the tooth. Lastly, an infection or disease can also infect the dental pulp.

There are many reasons why a dental pulp may need to be removed. If you are experiencing a toothache this is the number one sign that you may need root canal therapy. A toothache is considered a dental emergency that will need to be treated right away to prevent further complications.

What are some signs that you need root canal therapy?

Symptoms can fluctuate from person to person but you may require root canal treatment if:

  • You have severe dental pain when chewing or biting down
  • You have tooth sensitivity to hot or cold that doesn’t go away
  • You have swelling or gum soreness near the affected tooth
  • The tooth starts to darken
  • A pus-filled pimple develops on the gums

Whether you have questions about the services we offer or you just want to schedule a consultation with us, Comprehensive Dental Care in West Hartford, CT, is here to serve you. Call our office today!

By Comprehensive Dental Care
August 18, 2017
Category: Oral Health
Tags: oral hygiene   flossing  

One of the keys to a healthy mouth is daily oral hygiene. These tasks have one objective: remove plaque, a thin film of bacteria and leftover food particles, from tooth surfaces. Plaque fosters bacterial growth that can cause diseases like tooth decay or periodontal (gum) disease.

Brushing does an effective job removing plaque from the broad surfaces of teeth. But because plaque can also grow between teeth where your brush can’t reach, you also need to floss.

Unfortunately, flossing is a lot of people’s least favorite hygiene task. It can be time-consuming and requires a little more dexterity than brushing. As a result, it’s common for people to brush but not floss — and potentially miss plaque that could trigger dental disease.

There is an easier alternative to traditional string flossing: an oral irrigator. These countertop appliances deliver a stream of pulsating water at high pressure through a handheld device that looks similar to a power toothbrush. The user directs the water stream through the nozzle tip (which comes in various sizes) between the teeth. The water vibrates plaque loose and then rinses it away.

Besides people with limited dexterity, water flossers are also ideal for individuals wearing braces or other orthodontic hardware. Because of the metal hardware on and around teeth, flossing can be an arduous task. An oral irrigator makes it easier to floss and reduce plaque buildup, a perennial problem for orthodontic patients. In fact, one study of orthodontic patients found that using an irrigator with a tip especially designed for braces removed five times as much plaque as patients using only a manual toothbrush.

Of course, anyone can use an oral irrigator as an alternative to traditional flossing. Your dentist and staff can advise you on what to look for in equipment and provide instruction on how to use it. If traditional flossing isn’t your thing, consider an oral irrigator to get rid of plaque and keep your teeth and gums healthy and attractive.

If you would like more information on oral irrigation to remove daily plaque, 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 “Cleaning between Your Teeth: How Water Flossing can help.”

By Comprehensive Dental Care
August 03, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: celebrity smiles   veneers  

What's an actor's most important feature? According to Vivica A. Fox, whose most recent big-screen role was in Independence Day: Resurgence, it's what you see right up front.

"On screen, your smile and your eyes are the most inviting things that bring the audience in" she said. "Especially if you play the hot chick."

But like lots of people, Vivica reached a point where she felt her smile needed a little help in order to look its best. That's when she turned to a popular cosmetic dental treatment.

"I got veneers years ago," Ms. Fox told Dear Doctor magazine in a recent interview, "just because I had some gapping that probably only I noticed."

What exactly are dental veneers? Essentially, they are thin shells of lustrous porcelain that are permanently attached to the front surfaces of the teeth. Tough, lifelike and stain-resistant, they can cover up a number of defects in your smile — including stains, chips, cracks, and even minor spacing irregularities like the ones Vivica had.

Veneers have become the treatment of choice for Hollywood celebs — and lots of regular folks too — for many reasons. Unlike some treatments that can take many months, it takes just a few appointments to have veneers placed on your teeth. Because they are custom made just for you, they allow you to decide how bright you want your smile to be: anywhere from a natural pearly hue to a brilliant "Hollywood white." Best of all, they are easy to maintain, and can last for many years with only routine care.

To place traditional veneers, it's necessary to prepare the tooth by removing a small amount (a millimeter or two) of its enamel surface. This keeps it from feeling too big — but it also means the treatment can't be reversed, so once you get veneers, you'll always have them. In certain situations, "no-prep" or minimal-prep veneers, which require little or no removal of tooth enamel, may be an option for some people.

Veneers aren't the only way to create a better smile: Teeth whitening, crowns or orthodontic work may also be an alternative. But for many, veneers are the preferred option. What does Vivica think of hers?

"I love my veneers!" she declared, noting that they have held up well for over a decade.

For more information about veneers, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation.