Self-Performed Methods of Dental Plaque Identification

Tartar cannot be removed by simple brushing and flossing, but only through professional cleaning by your dentist or Dental Emergency Chula Vista.

Plaque pertains to the slimy, sticky substance that collects on the surface of the teeth. It is the major cause of both tooth decay and gum disease, thus making it extremely important to get rid of plaque deposits before they can wreak havoc on your mouth.

But the thing is, plaque can be pretty hard to detect with the naked eye because it has the same color as your teeth. But worry not, for there are tools for Dental Emergency Chula Vista, which can help detect where plaque builds up and let you know how good you when it comes brushing and flossing your pearly whites.

Why Remove Plaque?

Plaque disclosing agents are often used by dentists to show their patients where and how much plaque has accumulated on their teeth.

Removing plaque deposits while they are still new and soft is recommended in order to prevent them from turning into hardened deposits called tartar or calculus, where plaque and bacteria can continue to thrive.

Methods of Plaque Disclosure:

Plaque Disclosing Tablets:

One method of plaque disclosure makes use of special disclosing tablets made up of red dye. This dye gets absorbed by plaque, thus staining it and making it much easier to detect. To use these tablets, get one tablet and chew it thoroughly. Swish the chewed tablet-saliva mixture onto your teeth for about 30 seconds. Spit it out, rinse off with water and then examine your teeth. You may use your bathroom mirror, or even a small mirror to get a closer look.

Red stains indicate plaque. These stains highlight the areas where you should improve your brushing and flossing.

Now, some individuals may frown upon the idea of bright red staining, not only on the teeth but on your gums, tongue, or lips as well. Take note that the staining is temporary and will be gone after a few hours.

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Plaque Disclosing Solutions:

Plaque Disclosing Solutions work in pretty much the same way as disclosing tablets, only that they are in liquid form already. Like in the tablet form, you have to swish the solution around your mouth for about the same time. Then, you also have to spit it out and check your teeth afterward.

Some disclosing solutions are available as two-toned agents, which help differentiate between old and new plaque deposits.

Plaque Disclosing Swabs:

These swabs are pre-saturated with a disclosing solution. They are used by dabbing the swab along the tooth surface to show the plaque deposits. Compared to disclosing solutions, there are more convenient, more easily controlled, and less messy.

Plaque Light:

Plaque light requires the use of a special fluorescent solution that you’ll swish around your mouth and then rinse off with water. To detect plaque, you will have to use an ultraviolet light. The light will help make plaque more visible by giving it bright yellow-orange color.

The main advantage of the plaque light and fluorescent solution combo is that it doesn’t produce any visible stains in your mouth.

After using any of the disclosing products brush your teeth after and be sure to improve your brushing on the areas where plaque accumulates the most. Brush as thoroughly as you can until there are no stains left.

If you wish to be sure about the efficiency of your oral hygiene, use a disclosing agent for as long as you wish until you see less and less plaque.

Plaque disclosing agents are particularly helpful for kids, orthodontic patients, and individuals prone to tooth decay and gum disease.

5 Biggest Causes of Tooth Sensitivity

Do you find yourself wincing every time you eat your ice-cold treat? Or perhaps when you brush or floss your teeth?

You could be experiencing tooth sensitivity. You don’t have to worry, though, as there are lots of things you can do to lessen this discomfort.

Among them is knowing what the most common causes are, so you can avoid them and prevent tooth sensitivity from occurring in the first place.

Vigorous Toothbrushing

Toothbrushing is good for your oral health, but doing it with too much gusto can actually be harmful to your teeth.

Vigorous brushing can wear down the tooth enamel and expose the dentin underneath it. The dentin consists of small tubules that connect directly to the pulp, which contains nerves.

When these tubules are exposed to extreme heat or cold, the nerves are stimulated resulting to tooth sensitivity. To avoid thinning out your enamel, brush more gently using a soft-bristled toothbrush.

Acidic Foods

Acidic foods can also wear down the tooth enamel just like vigorous brushing does.

The only difference between the two is that acids cause chemical dissolution, while brushing causes mechanical wearing.

You don’t have to stay away from these foods. Instead, you can just rinse your mouth with water right after eating any acidic food to wash away the acids and limit their contact with your teeth. And be sure to wait for at least 30 minutes before brushing your teeth.

The dissolution caused by the acid plus the mechanical action of your brush will only make the problem even worse.

Bruxism

Again, even though the enamel is the hardest and strongest substance in the body, it can easily be worn down by various mechanical factors.

One is vigorous brushing, and another is by bruxism or tooth grinding. It causes sensitivity in the same way as the first two.

To solve this oral habit, consult your dentist for recommendations and fabrication of a protective mouth-guard that you can use at night.

Gum Disease

Gum disease, caused by excessive accumulation of plaque on tooth surface, lead to gum recession and exposure of the tooth roots.

Unlike your tooth crown which has hard, strong enamel to protect it, the cementum covering the tooth root is softer and therefore more prone to dissolution and mechanical wear.

In such case, your dentist will manage the underlying problem first then prescribe something that will help seal your teeth.

Dental Treatment

It is not uncommon to experience some sensitivity after undergoing certain dental procedures. These include professional cleaning, placement of restorations, root canal treatment, or even extraction.

The sensitivity induced by these procedures can last for a couple of days and should not be a cause of concern because it will go away on its own.

However, if the symptom persists and/or gets worse, contact your dentist immediately. Only your dentist will know what to do and give the best advice for your particular situation.

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5 Symptoms That Should Make You Run to Your San Diego Dentist

When was the last time you have been to the dentist?

The recommended frequency of dental visits should be once every six months, but this is hard to achieve for many of us.

Sometimes, we get too busy and preoccupied with day-to-day life and a visit to our San Diego dentist takes a backseat, all too often forgotten.

For some of us, a visit to the dentist is as scary today as when we first went as kids.

But there just are some dental issues that absolutely can’t be avoided and that require immediate attention from your dentist.

Normally it’s a nasty toothache, but did you know that there are a lot of other symptoms that should be a cause of concern?

You’ll be surprised at how normal these ‘little symptoms’ seem and at how important it is to have them checked by our San Diego dentist.

When to Visit Your San Diego Dentist:

Bad Breath and Unusual Taste in The Mouth:

There are two kinds of bad breath: the normal kind and the recurring kind, the latter of which should be a cause of concern.

If you have a sudden change in the smell and taste of your mouth, and it has nothing to do with what you ate (or drank, or smoked), then you must visit your dentist. It could be a sign of gum disease, cavities, or even GERD.

Mouth Sores That Do Not Seem to Heal:

Mouth sores are common. They come and go, especially when your body is trying to adjust to natural changes in chemical composition or even changes in the weather.

Normally, mouth sores should heal within two weeks; if they linger longer than that, you should definitely go see your San Diego dentist.

Mouth sores are one of the first signs of mouth cancer, but it should appear along with other symptoms.

Visiting the dentist is only a safety barrier, just to rule out anything serious.

Pain, Swelling, and Bleeding in the Gums:

Any form of pain or swelling is an indication that something is wrong.

It could mean a gum infection, cavities, or gum disease.

The first sign of tenderness or swelling, accompanied by some discoloration in that specific gum area, should send you to your dentist right away. Gum problems, when neglected, could cause tooth loss.

Teeth Sensitivity:

Teeth sensitivity is characterized by a sudden jolt of pain when eating/drinking hot, cold, or sour food/drinks.

It is always an indication of nerve damage and should be seen by your dentist immediately.

Chronic Dryness of Mouth:

The saliva in the mouth is there for a reason, one being that it contains a lot of antiseptic properties that help maintain the mouth’s bacterial and chemical equilibrium.

If you experience dry mouth too frequently and too long at a time, you should visit your San Diego dentist >ASAP. It could be a sign of an underlying condition.

For your San Diego dentist needs, there’s always Irresistible Smiles. Contact us today at (858) 755-8993 to set up an appointment!

Everything You Need to Know About Porcelain Veneers

There are many uses for porcelain veneers. Sometimes, they are quicker, less painful, and probably much less expensive than a teeth whitening procedure.

Other times, they are a perfect way to hide imperfections like a mismatched color filling in the front teeth.

They also are a great way to mask chips and massive gaps in the front teeth. Compared to getting crowns, veneers are less invasive.

If you’re considering getting porcelain veneers, but you are not quite certain about whether to get them or not, here’s a quick porcelain veneers guide:

What Are Veneers?

Veneers are basically teeth cover-ups, custom-fitted to your teeth.

They are thin shells of special materials bonded to your teeth using special dental cement. Veneers are made of either of these materials:

a) Composite resin material
b) Porcelain

How Are Veneers Placed?

Before the doctor decides that you are a good candidate for dental veneers, he/she checks mainly two things:

1) Your dental problem that needs veneers, and
2) The overall condition of your teeth,

If you have any of the following conditions or in any of these situations, veneers may not be good for you:

Tooth Decay and Gum Disease.

Teeth weakened by decay and gum disease could make you ineligible for veneers.

If your gum problems and tooth decay are mild and curable, the dentist will provide treatment for these problems before proceeding with the veneer procedure.

In other cases where there is not much enamel left in the teeth or much of the teeth’s structure is compromised by too many fillers, veneers are definitely out of the question.

Severely Crooked or Misaligned Teeth.

Unless the tooth position is corrected, it is virtually impossible to attach the ceramic or porcelain veneers to the teeth.

Habitual Clenching and Grinding.

People who have a problem with grinding and/or clenching their teeth need to have this problem fixed or relieved (with mouth guards, like Irresistible Smiles’ Battleguard) before veneers are placed. Otherwise, the clenching may cause cracks and damage to the veneers.

When these problems are corrected or solved and are completely out of the way, the veneer placement process may commence.

Composite resin veneers can be created and attached all in a single session, but porcelain veneers may need about two or three sessions to be completed.

The dentist will remove about a one-half of a millimeter from the tooth by buffing, local anesthesia will also be administered.

With composite veneers, the resin will be fitted right after buffing. With the ceramic (porcelain) kind, the dentist will have to make a mold from the teeth.

This mold will then be sent to the laboratory for fitting. This usually takes one to two days before the veneers get back to the dentist’s clinic.

At Irresistible Smiles, our in-house laboratory ensures that the whole process is completed more quickly.

It should not take more than two visits to complete; in some cases, it may even be sooner than that.

After fitting, shade matching will have to be done to make sure that the veneer does not look too artificial.

It is essential to achieve the right shade of composite or porcelain veneer as it is irreversible.

When the right shade is achieved, the teeth are chemically treated to prepare them for bonding. The right bonding cement shade will be picked and then the veneers are attached.

How Much Do Veneers Cost?

Porcelain and composite veneers vary in cost. To learn more about how much they cost, and for more information about veneers and other options, visit Irresistible Smiles in Chula Vista and San Diego today! Book a consultation here.