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Posts for category: Dental Procedures
Dental implants offer an excellent alternative to dentures or bridges if you have a missing tooth. Although they can last a lifetime, implants can fail in some cases. Edward A Chipps, DDS, offers dental implant in Alpharetta and explains why implants fail.
The implant never bonds with the surrounding bone
Normally, the bone in your jaw grows around the implant in a process called osseointegration. If osseointegration is successful, the implant is as stable and strong as the natural roots of your teeth. Unfortunately, sometimes the jawbone doesn’t fuse with your implant. This can occur if you experienced a blow to your mouth, the implant wasn’t placed correctly or it fractured. Other possible reasons of dental implant failure include damage to the tissues surrounding the implant or insufficient bone density.
Choosing a dentist who has significant experience with the dental implant process can lower your risk of implant failure. An experienced dentist knows how to place the implant for the best results and will recommend bone grafts if you don’t have enough density or volume to support an implant.
An infection develops
An infection called peri-implantitis can occur if bacteria enter the implant site during or after surgery. You may be more likely to develop an infection if you smoke, have diabetes or thin gums, or don’t follow the oral hygiene practices your dentist recommends.
The implant and crown are placed on the same day
Some people experience overloading if their dentist places the implant and installs the crown on top of it on the same day. Overloading occurs when there is so much pressure on the implant that it is unable to fuse with your jawbone.
Sinus inflammation or infection can occur if your implant protrudes into a sinus cavity. Your dentist can fix this problem by performing sinus augmentation, a surgical procedure that lifts the bone and makes enough room for your implant. In some cases, an implant may be placed very close to a nerve, which can cause pain. If a patient experience severe pain, the implant may need to be removed.
Want to know more about getting a dental implant in Alpharetta? Call Edward A Chipps, DDS at (770) 777-0511 and learn how the procedure can help you feel more confident about your appearance.
A few days before the Oscars, Vanity Fair magazine asked Academy Awards host Neil Patrick Harris to name his most treasured possession. Was it his Tony award statuette for best leading actor in a musical? His star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame? The stethoscope he wore while playing teenaged doctor Doogie Howser on TV? No, as it turns out, the 41-year-old actor’s most treasured possession is… his wisdom teeth. Yes, you read that correctly. “Oddly, I still have my four wisdom teeth,” Harris said. “I refuse to let them go or I’ll lose my wise parts.”
How odd is it for a 41-year-old to have wisdom teeth? Actually, not that odd at all. While it is true that wisdom teeth are often removed, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to this. It all depends on whether they are causing problems now, or are likely to cause problems in the future.
The trouble wisdom teeth cause is related to the fact that they are the last molars to come in, and that molars are large in size. By the time wisdom teeth appear between the ages of 17 and 21, there often is not enough room for them in the jaw. Sometimes it’s because you may have inherited a jaw size that’s too small for your tooth size; and generally speaking, the size of the human jaw has evolved to become smaller over time.
If room is lacking, the adjacent molar (that came in earlier) can interfere with the path of eruption — causing the wisdom tooth to come in at an odd angle. The wisdom tooth can hit up against that other tooth, possibly causing pain or damaging the adjacent tooth. This is known as “impaction.” Sometimes the wisdom tooth breaks only partway through the gum tissue, leaving a space beneath the gum line that’s almost impossible to clean, causing infection. A serious oral infection can jeopardize the survival of teeth, and even spread to other parts of the body.
If a wisdom tooth is impacted, will you know it? Not necessarily. A tooth can be impacted without causing pain. But we can see the position of your wisdom teeth on a dental x-ray and help you make an informed decision as to whether they should stay or go. If removal is the best course of action, rest assured that this procedure is completely routine and that your comfort and safety is our highest priority. If there is no great risk to keeping them, as Neil Patrick Harris has done, we can simply continue to monitor their condition at your regular dental checkups. It will be particularly important to make sure you are reaching those teeth with your brush and floss, and that you keep to your schedule of regular professional cleanings at the dental office. All healthy teeth are indeed worth treasuring.
If you would like more information about wisdom teeth, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can learn more by reading the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Wisdom Teeth” and “Removing Wisdom Teeth.”
You probably already know that using tobacco causes significant health risks: It increases your odds of getting various cancers and coronary diseases, to name just a few. Unfortunately, not everyone is able to kick the habit, even when they know they should. Tooth loss is another issue that can cause trouble for your health, in the form of bone loss, malnutrition, and social or psychological problems. Dental implants are a great way to replace missing teeth — but does smoking complicate the process of getting implants?
The short answer is yes, smoking can make implant placement a bit riskier — but in the big picture, it doesn’t mean you can’t (or shouldn’t) have this procedure done if it’s needed.
Smoking, as you know, has harmful effects in your mouth (even leaving aside the risk of oral cancer). The hot gases can burn the oral cavity and damage salivary glands. Nicotine in smoke reduces blood flow to the soft tissues, which can affect the immune response and slow the processes of healing. At the same time, smoking promotes the growth of disease-causing oral bacteria.
How does this affect dental implants? Essentially, smoking creates a higher risk that implants may not heal properly after they are placed, and makes them more likely to fail over time. Studies have shown that smokers have an implant failure rate that’s twice as great as non-smokers. Does this mean that if you smoke, you shouldn’t consider implants to replace missing or failing teeth?
Not necessarily. On the whole, implants are the most successful method of replacing missing teeth. In fact, the overall long-term survival rate of implants for both smokers and non-smokers is well over 90 percent — meaning that only a small percentage don’t work as they should. This is where it’s important to get the expert opinion of an implant specialist, who can help you decide whether implants are right for your particular situation.
If you do smoke, is there anything you can do to better your odds for having a successful dental implant? Yes: quit now! (Implants are a good excuse to start a smoking-cessation program.) But if you can’t, at least stop smoking for one week before and two weeks after implant placement. And if that is not possible, at least go on a smoking diet: restrict the number of cigarettes you smoke by 50% (we know you can at least do that!) Try to follow good oral hygiene practices at all times, and see your dentist regularly for checkups and cleanings.
Magician Michel Grandinetti can levitate a 500-pound motorcycle, melt into a 7-foot-tall wall of solid steel, and make borrowed rings vanish and reappear baked inside bread. Yet the master illusionist admits to being in awe of the magic that dentists perform when it comes to transforming smiles. In fact, he told an interviewer that it’s “way more important magic than walking through a steel wall because you’re affecting people’s health… people’s confidence, and you’re really allowing people to… feel good about themselves.”
Michael speaks from experience. As a teenager, his own smile was enhanced through orthodontic treatment. Considering the career path he chose for himself — performing for multitudes both live and on TV — he calls wearing an orthodontic device (braces) to align his crooked teeth “life-changing.” He relies on his welcoming, slightly mischievous smile to welcome audiences and make the initial human connection.
A beautiful smile is definitely an asset regardless of whether you’re performing for thousands, passing another individual on a sidewalk or even, research suggests, interviewing for a job. Like Michael, however, some of us need a little help creating ours. If something about your teeth or gums is making you self-conscious and preventing you from smiling as broadly as you could be, we have plenty of solutions up our sleeve. Some of the most popular include:
- Tooth Whitening. Professional whitening in the dental office achieves faster results than doing it yourself at home, but either approach can noticeably brighten your smile.
- Bonding. A tooth-colored composite resin can be bonded to a tooth to replace missing tooth structure, such a chip.
- Veneers. This is a hard, thin shell of tooth-colored material bonded to the front surface of a tooth to change its color, shape, size and/or length; mask dental imperfections like stains, cracks, or chips, and compensating for excessive gum tissue.
- Crowns. Sometimes too much of a tooth is lost due to decay or trauma to support a veneer. Instead, capping it with a natural-looking porcelain crown can achieve the same types of improvements. A crown covers the entire tooth replacing more of its natural structure than a veneer does.
If you would like more information about ways in which you can transform your smile, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about the techniques mentioned above by reading the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Teeth Whitening,” “Repairing Chipped Teeth,” and “Porcelain Crowns & Veneers.”
You just visited Edward A. Chipps, DDS for professional teeth whitening, and your teeth look amazing. Now you just need to keep them that way. Keep your teeth looking vibrant and beautiful after your professional teeth whitening procedure with these three tips recommended by your Alpharetta cosmetic dentistry professionals.
1. Avoid Stain-Causing Substances
Avoiding stain-causing substances is always important, but it is especially crucial during the first 48 hours after your whitening procedure. During this time, avoid anything that might stain your teeth, including berries, soda, wine, tomatoes, soy sauce, lipstick, tobacco and even colored toothpaste and mouthwash. After the first 48 hours is up, you can enjoy these foods once again, though you will want to use moderation.
2. Practice Proper Oral Hygiene
While some foods are worse than others, all types of foods can potentially cause staining if they are allowed to set on your teeth long enough. Keep your teeth white and your mouth healthy by diligently practicing proper oral hygiene. Brush your teeth twice a day and floss and rinse once a day at the bare minimum. You may even want to brush or rinse after every meal if you can.
3. Keep Regular Dental Appointments
No matter how diligent you are with your brushing routine, however, you will never be able to get all of the germs and food particles off of your teeth. This is why visiting your Alpharetta dentist is so important. Periodic cleanings will keep your teeth healthy and help ensure that the results of your cosmetic dentistry procedure will last as long as possible.
Visiting Dr. Chipps in Alpharetta for cosmetic dentistry is a great way to achieve the beautiful, white smile you’ve always wanted, but only if you continue to take care of your smile after your procedure is over. Use these three tips and your smile is sure to look fantastic for a long, long time.