Is it Time to Change your Toothbrush?

Even though you may be regularly brushing your teeth, it might not be as effective as you think if your toothbrush is dirty or worn out. The next time you brush, take a look at the tool you are using to clean your mouth to make sure it’s not time for a new one. How do you know when the time is right for a change?

The first thing to think about is bacteria. A toothbrush can harbor millions of cells of bacteria, and they don’t completely wash away just by rinsing your brush. Water isn’t enough to thoroughly eliminate food particles and bacteria. This means that you should change your toothbrush regularly, especially after an illness, so that you’ll be less likely to be brushing your teeth with a germ-filled brush.

Another consideration is the quality of the toothbrush. With use over time, the bristles become frayed and loose. Eventually your toothbrush will be ineffective in the goal of eliminating plaque and cleaning your teeth. It doesn’t matter if the bristles started out as firm or soft, they will eventually wear out.

Most dentists recommend replacing your toothbrush every three months. If it has been contaminated with illness, throw it away and get a new one because the bacteria may continue to live on your toothbrush.

As you use your toothbrush, here are some tips on keeping it clean:

  • Rinse it with hot water after use, and let it air dry. Because bacteria requires moisture to survive, give your toothbrush time to dry out between uses so that bacteria is less likely to persist.
  • Clean your toothbrush once a week in boiling water, mouthwash, or hydrogen peroxide. Soak the brush for at least ten seconds each time to sanitize it.
  • Store your toothbrush in an upright position, which will help it dry faster and keep the bristles away from contaminated surfaces.

Many dentists provide free toothbrushes at checkups, but if you miss an appointment don’t neglect changing your toothbrush on your own. It’s an inexpensive way to protect your oral health.

General dentist in Fresno California

Getting and Keeping a Bright Smile

A sparkling smile can be one of your best assets. That means getting rid of tooth discoloration caused by things like age, foods and drinks, or smoking.

Here are some tips for choosing a whitening method, and then maintaining your bright smile afterwards.

Consult a cosmetic dentist for help in selecting a whitening method. Together you can make a safe and effective choice for the condition of your teeth. The fastest and most dramatic way to brighten your smile is bleaching in the dentist’s office. A whitening solution will be applied to your teeth, and then the dentist uses a special light to enhance the process. It takes about an hour to perform the treatment, and if your stains are severe it can take more than one treatment to achieve optimum results.

Another option that your cosmetic dentist may recommend can be performed at home. Trays for both your upper and lower teeth will be provided for you to insert a small amount of whitening gel inside. You will wear the trays, similar to mouth guards, for several hours or overnight while the gel does its job. Patients usually must perform this treatment for a few weeks to achieve desired results.

After you have completed the tooth whitening process, you’ll want to keep your pearly whites as long as possible. Checkups that include professional cleaning should be maintained every six months to eliminate plaque, tartar, and surface stains. Brushing and flossing at home should be done every day to keep your smile healthy and bright.

Another way to maintain your smile is to choose your foods carefully. Avoid those that are known to stain teeth, such as coffee, tea, red wine, and dark berries. Crunchy fruits and vegetables are good choices to prevent stains on your teeth by cleaning and polishing them naturally. Eating foods high in protein like cheese can help preserve your tooth enamel.

Whitening your teeth is a great way to improve your appearance and provide a more youthful look. Ask your dentist about the methods that is right for you.

Teeth whitening dentist in Fresno California

Dry Mouth is More Than Annoying

Having the ongoing feeling that your mouth is parched and dry is more than uncomfortable. It can mean there are some underlying issues causing it, as well as some negative impacts on your health that can result from a chronic dry mouth. Let’s learn about why it’s so important to maintain a good production of saliva, and what to do if your levels are too low.

Importance of saliva
You may be surprised at all the roles that saliva plays in your system. The enzymes in saliva help break down your food to begin the digestion process. It lubricates and protects your teeth and mouth tissues. Also, saliva helps break down and move along trapped food in your mouth, therefore protecting your teeth from the bacteria in the particles that can lead to decay. Without the proper amount of saliva, your risk of infections, tooth decay, and gum disease all increase.

Causes
While dry mouth can be linked to diseases such as diabetes, it can also be a side effect of prescription medication. There are over 400 medicines that are known to trigger dry mouth. Other common causes of dry mouth are anxiety, trauma to the salivary glands, alcohol consumption, mouth breathing, radiation therapy, and dehydration from lack of fluids.

Symptoms
Here are some signs that may point to chronic dry mouth:

  • Lack of saliva accumulation in the floor of your mouth
  • Dry, cracked lips or tongue
  • Overly thick saliva
  • Thirsty often
  • Food sticking to your teeth
  • Bleeding or cracked oral mucosa

Treatment
If your dry mouth is linked to medication, talk with your doctor about alternatives. Other treatment involved drinking water often, careful oral hygiene, trying sugarless candy or gum, using a room vaporizer to increase air moisture, and using saliva substitutes from your drugstore.

General dentist in Fresno California

Is it Okay to Put Off Root Canal Treatment?

If your dentist has told you that root canal treatment is necessary in order to save your damaged or infected tooth, you might be wondering how long you can put it off before getting the work done. It may be fear, scheduling, or other reasons that stand in your way. No matter what, you need to know the importance of timing so that your health is not jeopardized.

The first thing you must decide is what healthcare professional will perform your root canal treatment. Often, your regular dentist is able to do routine root canal therapy. Some cases are complicated though, so you may be referred to an endodontist who specializes in root canal treatment.

Once you’ve chosen your doctor, go in immediately for a thorough evaluation of your condition. It is not uncommon for an infection to be present, which may spread without immediate treatment. Root canal therapy involves removing any infection inside your tooth and cleaning the area so that infection cannot spread. The longer you put off treatment, the more likely it is that the infection will worsen.

It is unlikely that root canal treatment will be performed on the same day as diagnosis. You should be able to work with the dental office to schedule your appointment at the time that is best for you. If you are experiencing severe pain associated with your tooth, the office will probably try to fit you in for treatment as soon as possible.

A painful tooth may spur you on to get root canal treatment right away. Sometimes there is no discomfort even though your tooth is damaged, so putting off treatment may be more appealing. Fear of a painful procedures causes many patients to neglect root canal therapy. Actually, most patients report that the procedure does not hurt any more than getting a regular filling. There really is no reason to put off necessary treatment, so go ahead and schedule your appointment to save your tooth.

Root canal dentist in Fresno California

Overcoming Sensitivity from Teeth Whitening

Just because you have sensitive teeth doesn’t mean you’re out of luck about achieving a bright, sparkling smile. Maybe you’ve tried teeth whitening products or procedures before, and it caused so much discomfort or pain that you’ve given up on restoring your smile. Since there are numerous people who have this experience, experts have come up with ways to combat sensitivity so that everyone can benefit from teeth whitening.

What causes sensitivity?
Overly sensitive teeth are usually caused by gingivitis, cracked teeth, or receding gums. See your dentist before using any teeth whitening products so that you will know if you have any issues like these that might increase sensitivity.

What can I do about it?
If your dentist informs you of any problems that may heighten sensitivity, or if you experience symptoms of overly sensitive teeth, consider getting treatment for the underlying problems that are causing you discomfort. You may need to have fillings or other procedures that can remedy your problems, because most dental problems are treatable. After healing, you’ll be able to have the teeth whitening treatment of your choice.

Are there certain products I should use?
There are products made especially for people with sensitive teeth. For example, lower levels of peroxide may be advisable for you. Remember that it can take longer to whiten teeth with products made for sensitive teeth, but the ultimate results should be worth the wait. Your dentist can recommend teeth whitening methods and products that target sensitive teeth so that you can have a pain-free but effective whitening experience.

Professional teeth whitening dentist in Fresno California

Foods that Promote Healthy Teeth

A smart diet provides vitamins and minerals that help promote healthy teeth. Here are some foods to consider that are not only good for your body in general, but beneficial for your oral health.

Water
There are many advantages of drinking water, and some of them impact your oral health. Water cleans your mouth and helps saliva distribute minerals onto your teeth. It also flushes away trapped food particles, and hydrates your gums. It can even help keep bad breath at bay.

Milk
A great source of calcium, milk helps make your bones and teeth healthy.

Cheese
High in calcium and phosphate while low in acid and sugar, cheese benefits your mouth. It aids enamel, promotes saliva, evens out your oral pH balance, and kills bacteria that leads to decay and gum disease.

Fruit
Many fruits like berries, citrus, apples, and kiwis are high in Vitamin C. Consuming this vitamin contributes to healthy gums, and helps reduce gum sensitivity and disease.

Vegetables
Carrots, sweet potatoes, broccoli and pumpkin are all rich in Vitamin A, which is important for tooth enamel. Onions help kill bacteria, and crunchy vegetables stimulate and clean your gums.

Yogurt
Similar to cheese and milk, yogurt contains elements that add minerals to your teeth.

Animal products
Fish, beef, chicken, and eggs contain phosphorous, Vitamin D, and calcium. These ingredients improve your bones and jaw, and also your teeth.

Sesame seeds
Known for helping to eliminate plaque, sesame seeds also enhance the mineral content of your tooth enamel.

Dentist in Fresno California

Can a Cosmetic Dentist Solve Your Problems?

People who seek treatment from cosmetic dentists are from all walks of life. You don’t have to be a celebrity to benefit from the procedures offered in cosmetic dentistry. Ordinary people want to have great smiles too, and many types of problems can be resolved by cosmetic dental treatments and procedures.

Discolored teeth
Shiny white teeth make you look younger and healthier, as well as increase your self-esteem. Teeth become stained and yellow for a variety of reasons, including growing older, smoking, consuming foods and drinks that stain, and taking certain medications. The fastest and most effective way to brighten your smile is through professional methods available at a cosmetic dental office. Advanced whitening techniques can improve your smile and change your life at the same time.

Gaps
Teeth are sometime too far apart from each other, creating an unwanted gap in your smile. Orthodontics or dental veneers are two successful options for closing the gap so that your smile is more uniform and attractive.

Crooked teeth
Some cosmetic dentists offer orthodontic treatments, often using the new technology of Invisalign clear aligners. These invisible trays gently nudge your teeth into better positions, while allowing you to avoid the embarrassment and hassles typically associated with traditional braces.

Chips
Teeth can be chipped more easily than you might think. Biting on something hard, being hit in the mouth, falling down, and other incidents are common culprits for chipped teeth. It can be especially embarrassing if the chip is on a visible front tooth. Cosmetic dentists can help by bonding the chipped area or hiding the flaw completely with dental veneers.

Misshapen teeth
Sometimes teeth are longer or shorter than you’d like, or just don’t fit together well the rest of your smile. Simple cosmetic procedures can make a big difference.

Cosmetic sedation dentist in Fresno California

What to Expect After Oral Surgery

Surgeries are sometimes required to resolve injuries, defects, and diseases of various aspects of the mouth and jaw. It may be needed to remove wisdom teeth, repair broken teeth, restore the jaw, repair gum problems, and many other purposes. Typically performed by an oral surgeon on an outpatient basis, patients and their family members are responsible for their own care at home afterwards.

Here are some common outcomes that can be expected after oral surgery.

Bleeding
It is normal to experience some amount of bleeding after oral surgery, especially in the first few hours afterwards. The wound site may ooze for up to 24 hours. It may seem like you are bleeding more than you actually are, because when blood and saliva mix it creates more liquid. If you experience bleeding that isn’t controlled by holding gauze firmly to the area for four hours, contact your oral surgeon.

Swelling
Facial swelling is common for the first day or so following oral surgery, and may not dissipate for up to a week. Hold a cold compress or ice pack on the swollen area for the first day after surgery. It’s helpful to apply the compress for ten minutes and then remove it for ten minutes, alternating the two for the first day. On the next day, hold a warm compress to promote circulation and help reduce swelling. However, remember not to apply heat for the first 24 hours. As swelling goes down, bruising may occur and can last up to ten days.

Pain
Once the anesthetic from surgery wears off, pain is common. It is usually the worst for the first 48 hours, but some pain is not unusual for 3 to 5 days after surgery. Take the pain medication that your doctor prescribes, and avoid alcohol and driving if you are drowsy. If your pain is not controlled, contact your doctor for advice.

Sedation oral surgery dentist in Fresno California

Calming Your Wisdom Tooth Surgery Fears

Some people would rather endure tooth pain than have their wisdom teeth extracted during surgery. Most of the time, fears are based on irrational tales that people read on the internet or hear from others. The truth is that wisdom tooth surgery is extremely common and most oral surgeons perform them every day without complications. The best way to overcome fear is to learn more about the procedure and recovery.

Procedure
Extracting wisdom teeth involves opening the gums above the tooth and removing any bone that is blocking the tooth’s ability to erupt. The tissue will be separated to be able to remove the tooth, sometimes even in pieces if necessary. In some cases when bone is removed, a bone graft is needed to replace it. After the procedure is complete, stitches will be placed that will dissolve with time. If this sounds awful, remember that patients don’t feel any pain during the procedure due to sedation and usually don’t even recall anything that happened during treatment.

Recovery
There are some common outcomes to be expected after wisdom tooth extraction, all of which usually subside within a few days as long as you follow your surgeon’s instructions. Have someone accompany you to and from the appointment so they hear the recovery directions and so you don’t drive. Afterwards, you will be given gauze to bite on at the extraction site. Bite gently on the gauze and change it frequently. Avoid lying flat on your back because bleeding may increase. If you experience swelling, hold ice packs on the outside of your cheeks for the first day. Eat soft foods and avoid using a straw for the first few days, and try not to touch the area with your fingers or tongue. Do not smoke for at least 24 hours after oral surgery. If you follow all these guidelines and any others that your doctor provides, there are few risks and no reason to be afraid of wisdom tooth extraction.

Sedation dentist in Fresno California for wisdom teeth surgery

How an Oral Surgeon Can Help You

If you need a dental checkup, regular maintenance, or routine procedures, your general dentist is a good choice. However, even the most qualified dentists can’t perform every treatment related to your mouth. Serious conditions, trauma, or complicated procedures may require the help of an oral surgeon.

One very common reason you might visit an oral surgeon is to get your wisdom teeth removed. Once they erupt, usually during young adulthood, many people’s mouths are not large enough to comfortably contain the new teeth. Or, the wisdom teeth may become impacted and unable to erupt successfully, therefore requiring surgical extraction. If you have pain the back of your mouth, ask your dentist if your wisdom teeth might be the culprit. If so, get a referral to a reputable oral surgeon.

Car accidents, sports injuries, and other trauma can also be responsible for damage that requires oral surgery. Facial, jaw, and teeth damage can each cause painful issues. Most oral surgeons are qualified in performing reconstructive surgery to restore the function and appearance of your mouth and features.

If your dentist diagnoses a mouth cyst, an oral surgeon is often the best choice in having it removed. Some dentists are qualified in this type of procedure, but many refer patients to oral surgeons with more training and experience. This is especially true when anesthesia is needed for the procedure.

Dental implants are another reason to see an oral surgeon, who has greater knowledge and proficiency in this method of replacing missing teeth. Implants require a titanium rod to be surgically placed in your jaw, followed by a crown on top to complete the restoration. Most oral surgeons perform implants often because they are a popular choice today.

When you have oral health issues, you should usually see your general dentist first and will be referred to an oral surgeon if necessary. Don’t hesitate to follow through on this recommendation to get the treatment you need to maintain good oral health.

Sedation oral surgeon in Fresno California

Cosmetic Dentistry Transforms Your Smile

There are a variety of dental problems that can cause you to be embarrassed or unhappy with your smile. Some of them might include crooked, stained, or missing teeth. Cosmetic dentists offer a range of procedures to address these issues and more, and can makeover your entire smile through the latest in dental technologies.

Discolored teeth
If you have stained or yellowed teeth, whitening them is a simple way to improve your smile. There are a variety of teeth whitening methods that your cosmetic dentist may suggest. Home methods like strips and trays take longer than professional whitening techniques performed in a dental office. In an hour or less, laser teeth whitening can be performed using intense light. If your tooth discoloration is severe, veneers or crowns may be better solutions to restore your smile.

Misaligned smile
Crooked teeth or misaligned jaws can be corrected with braces, which no longer have to be the traditional metal type. Invisible braces, such as Invisalign, are an option today to transform your smile while going virtually unnoticed by others. Another reason many patients prefer orthodontics using clear aligning trays is that they are removable for cleaning, eating, and special occasions.

Missing teeth
Dental implants are another example of advances in dental technology. Implants replace missing or badly damaged teeth when your oral health is in good overall condition. Changes to your existing tooth structure are not needed, because implants only affect the tooth or teeth that are missing. Implants can also support dental bridges, offering an appealing alternative to partial dentures.

Cosmetic dentist in Fresno California with sedation

How to Know When you Need an Oral Surgeon

Sometimes even if you regularly visit the dentist for checkups and treatment, the skills of an oral surgeon may be required. Certain types of problems just can’t be properly corrected without surgery, and your health will benefit from prompt treatment by a qualified and experienced oral surgeon.

If you have any of the following issues, chances are it’s time to see an oral surgeon.

Wisdom teeth
The final set of teeth to develop are the third molars, or wisdom teeth. Sometimes they erupt above the gums and are able to fit nicely into the jaw with the other teeth. Often however, one or more of these teeth become impacted between the jawbone and gums. This can cause pain, infection, swelling, and even cysts or tumors that can lead to permanent damage. Dentists recommend surgically extracting impacted wisdom teeth.

Tooth extraction
Different kinds of teeth sometimes require removal due to impaction, placement, or other issues.

Dental implants
Missing teeth may be replaced with dental implants, which are titanium roots that are surgically anchored into the jawbone to hold an artificial tooth on top. Sufficient bone structure is required for implants, and sometimes bone grafts are needed to build up the jaw.

Oral cancer
Abnormal growths or tissue may need to be surgically removed to be sent for testing to diagnose oral cancer. Oral surgery is often necessary to remove entire tumors.

Trauma
Severe accidents can cause face, mouth, or jaw trauma that requires surgical reconstruction. Oral surgery is used to repair broken facial bones or fractured jaws.

Cleft lip or palate
When parts of the mouth and nasal cavity don’t grow properly, it can cause a gap in the lip or opening in the roof of the mouth. Cleft lips or palates require a team of specialists to correct the problems with a series of treatments and surgeries over several years.

Unequal jaw growth
Many problems can results when the upper and lower jaws don’t grow correctly. Serious cases require oral surgery to reposition one or both jaws to create a more balanced situation.

Dr. Smith offers oral surgery in Fresno California that also does sedation dentistry

The Benefits of Conscious Sedation Dentistry

Many patients experience anxiety about going to the dentist. It can be caused by a combination of things such as instruments, sounds, injections, and environment. It becomes especially overwhelming for nervous patients when they have to go for multiple visits to get procedures done. To address these types of difficulties with dental visits, sedation dentistry has become increasingly popular.

Conscious sedation is a common option for sedating dental patients. It depresses consciousness minimally enough that patients can maintain physical movement, breathing, and speech. Also called relaxation dentistry, it creates a feeling of total relaxation for the patient. It typically causes the patient not to be able to remember anything about the treatment afterwards.

The major benefits of conscious sedation include:

  • Patients can communicate any discomfort during the treatment
  • Patients are able to speak and respond to verbal cues
  • Cardiovascular functions and breathing are unaffected
  • Oral sedation is easily monitored
  • Small, easily swallowed pills are used with minimal side effects
  • Multiple dental treatments may be performed in a single office visit
  • Most patients are unaware of the treatment experience afterwards
  • Gag reflex can be avoided by using conscious sedation
  • Children can undergo dental treatment quickly and easily
  • Pain is minimized through the use of sedatives and pain relievers

The benefits of having conscious sedation during dental treatment outweighs the risks, especially when you consider that many anxious or fearful patients skip dental visits completely. Putting off dental care is not advised because more serious problems and procedures may result. Patients who are avoiding the dentist because of anxiety should ask their dentist about sedation options so that oral care can be provided effectively and consistently.

Sedation dentistry in Fresno California

Dental Implants: The Procedure

Providing an alternative to traditional dentures or bridges, dentistry now provides another popular way to restore missing teeth. Dental implants are a safe and effective option to give you back the appearance and functionality of your smile. Implants offer a comfortable solution, and look so natural that others cannot even tell your smile is not made up of all your real teeth.

When you are considering dental work, it is often helpful to know what to expect so that you can be confident and knowledgeable about the procedure. Of course your dentist will go through the exact details of your case, but here is a general overview of the typical process for getting dental implants.

Anesthesia
Your dentist will assess your medical history and you will decide together about the ideal anesthesia for your treatment. Anesthesia may range from mild sedation to complete sleep, depending upon your desires and needs and dentist’s recommendations.

Jawbone
After the anesthetics have taken effect, the dentist will access your jawbone to place the implant. A hole will be drilled for the implant, and a dental X-ray may be taken to ensure correct placement and depth of the hole. The titanium implant will then be surgically inserted into your jawbone, and your gum tissue will be stitched on top of the implant site.

Crown
Once the implant has been given time to heal, usually around seven days, a dental crown will be placed on top to complete the process. You will be ready for you to enjoy the benefits of your dental implant.

Dental implants and sedation dentistry in Fresno California

Reasons to Consider CEREC Same-day Crowns

Have you ever cracked a tooth? Do you dread the thought of going through the process of getting a crown to restore the damage? CEREC, or ceramic restoration, offers technology that allows your dentist to repair your fractured tooth with a natural-looking, long-lasting crown in just one visit.

The benefits of CEREC restoration are many, and the following are just a few reasons to consider a same-day crown:

  • CEREC crowns are made in the office and set the same day, allowing you to save valuable time.
  • Because CEREC is placed in one day, you will only need anesthesia one time.
  • CEREC crowns are completely free of metals that can cause allergic reactions in some patients.
  • With a CEREC crown, your dentist has complete control over the shape and fit of your tooth.
  • Because the computer technology used to create CEREC restorations is so precise in determining fit, there is less need for your natural tooth to be drilled away.
  • CEREC crowns have smaller gaps between surrounding teeth than traditional crowns, resulting in a smaller chance of restoration failure.
  • Because the crown is placed in the same day, the need for a temporary crown is eliminated.

CEREC restorations mean you no longer have to panic when you have a dental emergency. Consult with your dentist to find out more about CEREC technology and determine if it is a good option for your dental restorations. With the help of a CEREC trained dental professional, your smile can regain both its function and beauty in just one visit.

CEREC dentist in Fresno California

Are There Disadvantages to CEREC Reconstruction?

CEREC reconstruction is a method used by dental professionals to restore a tooth that has been compromised by damage or decay. Utilizing advanced computer technology, a CEREC trained dentist can design and create crowns, bridges and veneers onsite allowing them to be placed in just one office visit.

While there are many advantages to CEREC technology, there are a few disadvantages you may want to consider when making a decision about your dental restorations:

  • CEREC restorations may not last as long as traditional all-metal versions. Ceramic restorations are not considered as strong or resistant to fracture as other materials.
  • Because the restoration is cut from a uniform block of ceramic, it is more difficult to achieve an exact color match to the surrounding natural teeth. A milled crown may not appear as natural as restorations made from other types of ceramics, making CEREC more appropriate for less visible teeth.

While disadvantages to CEREC reconstructions exist, the advantages are many. You are custom-fit with a long lasting, aesthetically attractive restoration in just one visit. A good CEREC dentist will spend the time necessary to stain and glaze the ceramic in a way that makes the restoration as natural as possible. For this reason, it is wise to do your homework and find a dentist who is well trained in CEREC technology. Because the CEREC process is highly technical, it should only be conducted by a dentist who has ample training experience with the process to ensure the results you desire.

To find out more about CEREC restorations and determine if it would be a good option for you to restore or replace old fillings, or correct damaged or uneven teeth, contact a CEREC certified dentist for a consultation.

Dr. Smith  is a Fresno sedation dentist that offer CEREC

Options in Sedation Dentistry

Dental treatment can be a frightening proposition for many people. Even routine checkups may be enough to send a person into a panic attack. This type of fear is called dental anxiety or phobia. If you have a hard time tolerating a trip to the dentist, sedation dentistry may be a great option.

The goal of sedation is to calm or relax patients so that they can undergo dental examinations or treatment without anxiety. It also enables them to handle the poking, prodding, and pain that sometimes accompanies dental work. Another benefit of sedation is minimizing patient movement and gag reflex. Longer appointments and multiple procedures are made possible using dental sedation.

Results are achieved using various methods and types of sedative medications. Here are the most common types of dental sedation:

  • Inhaled minimal sedation – commonly known as laughing gas, this method combines laughing gas and oxygen to provide an odorless gas inhaled through a mask placed over the patient’s nose. It works quickly to relax the patient in only a couple of minutes, and can be easily controlled by the dentist throughout treatment.
  • Oral sedation – sedatives or pain medications are swallowed or dissolved under the patient’s tongue. This quick and painless way to administer sedation is especially appealing to those with a fear of needles.
  • IV moderate sedation – drugs are given directly into the patient’s bloodstream through an intravenous needle. It produces a state of deep relaxation quickly, and makes the patient unaware of treatment throughout the process. Most patients do not remember what happened while under IV sedation.
  • General anesthesia – this heaviest type of sedation is used in the most severe dental phobia cases or for extensive, complex treatments. It’s usually administered through an injection or inhalant, and produces a sleep-like outcome in the patient so that nothing is remembered about the procedure at all.

Sedation dentistry is beneficial to those who avoid going to the dentist or having necessary treatments to improve their oral health as well as their overall health. Ask your dentist about the types of sedation available and which might help you.

Sleep dentist in Fresno California

Is Dental Sedation an Option for You?

Many people are fearful or overwhelmed at the prospect of scheduling dental exams, treatments, or procedures. Are you guilty of delaying much needed oral care due to anxiety or time constraints? Dental sedation may be the answer to your dental fears and phobias. Many dentists now offer a wide range of sedation options that allow you to comfortably undergo necessary dental care.

Sedation dentistry could be an option if you:

  • Have suffered traumatic dental experience in the past
  • Have a sensitive gag reflex that makes dental exams and treatments difficult to complete
  • Are highly sensitive to pain
  • Suffer from back or neck pain that make sitting in the dental chair for extended time uncomfortable
  • Have chronic jaw pain that is exacerbated by opening your mouth for extended periods of time
  • Have difficulty getting sufficiently numb with local anesthetic
  • Have limited time to spend in the dentist’s office
  • Are afraid of needles or drills

If any of these concerns apply to you, speak with your dentist about the options they offer for sedation. Thanks to dental sedation, there is no need to delay dental care due to fear or anxiety. With sedation dentistry options, you can remain calm and comfortable during dental treatments. From laughing gas to IV sedation, you can benefit from the calming effects of sedation for everything from routine cleanings to root canal therapy. Learn more about how dental sedation can help get you back on the road to a beautiful smile.

Dental office in Fresno California that offer sleep dentistry.

Frequently Asked Questions About CEREC

If you have a tooth that needs some reconstruction, you want to have the very best reconstruction process available. For many patients, that process is CEREC. It is an acronym for Ceramic Reconstruction.

Here, we’ll answer many of the frequently asked questions regarding CEREC.

  • What is CEREC? It is a process that utilizes computer assisted design (CAD) and computer assisted manufacture (CAM) to enable a dentist to design, manufacture and place single tooth restorations in the mouth.
  • How long does CEREC restoration take? Because of the CAD/CAM technology employed by the dentist, CEREC is accomplished in a single dental appointment.
  • Where does CEREC tooth construction take place? CEREC takes place in the dentist’s office and completely removes the need for a dental lab.
  • What materials are used with CEREC? CEREC utilizes tooth-colored ceramic blocks. The type of ceramic used is dependent upon which tooth is being replaced.
  • How is the tooth restoration created? CEREC utilizes CAM to mill the tooth restoration in as little as ten to fifteen minutes with diamond-coated milling tools.
  • Is CEREC safe? Yes! CEREC is in use by close to 40,000 dentists across the globe. Seven million CEREC restorations take place each year.
  • How accurate is CEREC? CEREC is extremely accurate. The number of patient issues related to poor fit is significantly lowered.
  • Will a tray be used to take dimensions of my mouth? No, CEREC removes the need for goop-filled trays and instead utilizes intraoral cameras that generate mouth scans. For patients with a sensitive gag reflex, this is revolutionary!

If you are considering CEREC, get these and more questions answered by your dentist today

Fresno CEREC Dentist

Erasing Fears with Dental Sedation

Fearing dental treatment is not just an old wives tale. Estimates are that as many as thirty percent of the population avoid dental visits due to fear. Dental phobia is a real disorder that prevents people from getting necessary oral care, but dental sedation is available to remedy the problem.

Although some preventative oral health methods are performed at home, such as brushing and flossing, there are some things that only can be achieved with the help of a dental professional. Examinations, x-rays and other tests, and professional cleanings should be done by a qualified dentist. Of course, procedures to treat or repair dental problems must be done by a dentist.

Some patients simply ignore warning signs such as pain, sensitivity, gum bleeding, or other problems. There is no need to suffer without treatment or allow issues to worsen; dental sedation allows nervous patients to get the help they need without any accompanying anxiety. Sedation may include laughing gas, tranquilizers, anti-anxiety medications or depressants to relax patients. There are a variety of ways the medication may be administered, such as inhaled through a mask, swallowed orally, or injected into the bloodstream through an IV. The method and type of sedation is recommended for each patient based on health history, procedure to be performed, anxiety level and other factors.

Sedation dentistry is considered a safe treatment when performed by a qualified professional. Make sure the dentist is well-trained in the techniques, experienced in using sedation, and has procedures in place in case of complications that may rarely occur. With the right dentist, you can go through your dental visit without experiencing any anxiety or pain, and you likely won’t remember anything that happened during treatment due to the effects of sedation. It provides a winning solution so that you can achieve better oral health without the dental fear you might have experienced in the past.

Sedation Dentistry Fresno CA

Do You Hate the Dentist? Sedation Dentistry Can Help You

Is going to the dentist among the worst things you can imagine doing? Does the sound of the dentist’s drill send chills up your spine? Would you rather be doing just about anything else rather than sitting in a dental chair for any reason at all, large or small? Have you ever put off a dental appointment (or never made one to begin with!) due to fear of the dental office?

If this sounds like you, you are not alone. Fear of the dentist is one of the most common fears shared by dental patients across the globe. As a result, patients are turning to sedation dentistry to help them conquer their fears and to enable them to receive their necessary dental therapies.

Oral conscious sedation is offered to dental patients in the form of a pill. Sometimes, if the patient’s anxiety is severe enough, the dentist may prescribe a dose for the night prior to the procedure, as well as an additional pill to be taken up to an hour prior to the treatment. This ensures that patients are well-rested and ready to heal properly, as well as leaving them feeling relaxed and comfortable at the start of the treatment.

Laughing gas, known as laughing gas, can be an effective inhaled conscious sedation. It can leave the patient feeling relaxed, happy and with a floating sensation. Sometimes patients will feel as though they have fallen asleep, but they haven’t. They are still able to comply with the instructions of the dentist.

IV sedation is the deepest and fastest-acting of conscious sedation dental options. It not only deeply sedates the patient while still allowing the patient to be responsive, but it removes the memories of events when it’s active in a patient’s system. Patients have no memory of what occurred, even though they might walk, talk and seem normal.

Remember that you should never drive following any sedation dentistry treatment except for laughing gas. Talk to your dentist about these and other options available to you to make your appointment as stress-free as possible.

Sedation Dentistry Fresno CA

Common Myths Regarding Sedation Dentistry

Having a feeling of apprehension regarding visiting the dentist is an emotion that is shared by a large number of people. This anxiety can extend to the sounds, sights and smells of a dental office, leading a patient to feel uncomfortable and fearful. Because of the prevalence of this feeling, the area of sedation dentistry has grown so that it no longer only addresses those patients with a phobia of the dentist, but also to those who are “only” anxious and nervous.

Despite the extremely commonplace nature of this fear and the use of sedation dentistry to address it, several myths still persist. Here, we’ll address those common sedation dentistry myths.

Myth: Sedation dentistry is a dangerous addition to dental treatment.

Fact: Sedation dentistry is extremely safe when the patient is of overall good health and the sedation is administered and closely monitored by a trained member of your dentist’s professional team.

Myth: Sedation dentistry only helps patients who have severe phobias of all things related to a dentist.

Fact: Sedation dentistry can help anyone who has any level of trepidation regarding dental treatment. It can especially help patients who have difficulty controlling their bodies or those who have acute gag reflexes.

Myth: Patients who have excessive levels of anxiety or fear are too frightened for sedation dentistry to help them.

Fact: Sedation dentistry can help anyone and can reduce anxiety regarding treatments as well as allowing particularly anxious patients to receive more complicated and lengthy treatments in a single setting.

Myth: You’re asleep during treatment.

Fact: Sedation dentistry doesn’t put you completely “out”. You will be able to respond to commands and to comply with any instruction from the dentist or team.

If you have other questions regarding the truth about sedation dentistry, find out more from your dentist. Get the information you need.

Sedation Dentistry Fresno CA

Are You a Candidate for CEREC?

CEREC, or ceramic reconstruction, is a technologically advanced way to restore teeth that have been damaged by disease, decay, or trauma. With CEREC (Chairside Economical Restoration of Esthetic Ceramics), a specially trained dental professional digitally scans the area of your mouth that needs treatment and then creates the restoration utilizing a milling machine right in their office. CEREC is an efficient process that saves you time and leaves you with an aesthetically appealing, well fitting, long-lasting restoration.

Any patient who needs reconstruction done to an existing tooth is a potential candidate for CEREC. The technology is used for a variety of procedures, including crowns, bridges and porcelain veneers. CEREC is especially appealing to patients who do not wish to spend extensive time in the dental chair. With traditional restorations, separate visits are required to make impressions, and then to place them once the restorations have returned from being constructed in a dental lab. With CEREC, all of these steps are completed in a single office visit, saving you time and hassle.

If you are deemed to be a candidate for ceramic reconstruction, your CEREC trained dentist will take a 3D image of your tooth to precisely determine the fit of your restoration. They will then utilize the CEREC machine to fabricate a permanent, natural-looking restoration specifically designed for your smile. These custom-milled restorations are both strong, long-lasting, and look and feel completely natural. A CEREC restoration will blend seamlessly with your existing teeth and provide outstanding comfort and function.

To determine if you are a viable candidate for ceramic restorations, consult with a CEREC trained dental professional. In just one dental visit, you can return to a healthy, beautiful smile.

 

CEREC dentist in Fresno CA

Dental Sedation Options for Senior Citizens

With aging comes challenges that can make dental care more important than ever. Because the condition of your oral health directly impacts other health issues, regular examinations and treatment by a qualified dental professional is a critical part of keeping aging patients healthy. Many senior citizens harbor old fears or anxiety stemming from unpleasant dental experiences in their youth. To ensure the aging patient is able to comfortably receive the dental care they need, sedation dentistry offers an array of options to make procedures and treatments stress-free.

Laughing gas, or laughing gas, is the most common method of sedation used for older patients. Administered through a mask, the effects are immediate and allow the patient to remain awake, yet relaxed and calm. Another benefit to laughing gas is that the effects wear off immediately upon completion of treatment.

Oral sedation is another option. Administered in the form of a pill, this type of sedation has the same effects as laughing gas, but does not have the same immediate results. Patients usually need to take oral sedation at least an hour prior to their procedure. Oral sedation is a good alternative for patients who are uneasy about having a mask place over their nose and mouth.

IV sedation is also an option for elderly patients. With this form of sedation, sedative drugs are administered through IV injection. IV sedation induces deep relaxation and produces very little memory of the time spent under sedation, if there is any memory at all. While the patient may appear to be asleep, patients under IV sedation are actually still conscious.

If you are an elderly patient or are responsible for the care of a senior citizen, consult with a sedation dentist about the types of sedation that are offered. A qualified sedation dentist can assess the specific needs and medical history of the patient and recommend the most appropriate form of sedation for the situation. Dental sedation is a wonderful option for aging patients to be able to comfortably and conveniently undergo much needed dental care.
Dr. Smith sedation dentistry for seniors in Fresno CA

 

 

IV Dental Sedation: What to Expect

If you are a patient with dental fears or anxiety, dental sedation can make it possible for you to undergo necessary dental treatments while remaining calm and comfortable. A qualified sedation dentist can offer several sedation options to best suit your situation. One option to consider is IV sedation, which utilizes medicine administered through an intravenous solution to relax you completely.

Before considering IV dental sedation, you should consult with your sedation dentist to determine if you are a good candidate for it. During this visit, your dentist will perform an examination, discuss your health history, and review the details you need to know about IV sedation.

For the day of your procedure you should arrange to have a responsible adult drive you to and from your appointment. Expect not to drive or attend work or school for 24 hours after sedation. Your dentist may also request that you fast prior to the procedure.

To start the IV sedation, your dentist or nurse anesthetist will begin an IV in your arm. The dentist will also use a local anesthetic to numb the treatment area before starting your procedure. While you won’t be completely asleep, don’t be surprised if you don’t remember much, if any, of your time in the dentist’s chair. Once the procedure is complete, your dentist will reverse the sedation, allowing you to rouse enough to go home.

Be vigilant about following any instructions provided by your dentist for aftercare. You may feel drowsy for a bit after your appointment. Plan ahead to stay home and rest for the remainder of the day and evening following your IV sedation.

Sedation dentistry means you no longer have to avoid necessary dental care. Knowing what to expect when undergoing IV dental sedation will help to ensure a successful and pain-free procedure.

 

Dr. Smith offers IV sedation in Fresno CA