How to Best Care for Your Dental Crowns and Bridges

When you have had restorative dental work such as dental crowns or dental bridges, you will want to take care of them so they will last as long as possible. Although they are designed to last for 10 to 20 years, sometimes they can become loose or even fall out. The main cause of a dental bridge or crown failure is dental disease.

You can take steps now to prevent oral problems by developing and maintaining good oral hygiene habits.

  • Brush your teeth a minimum of two times a day, or following each meal. Brushing is the best way to prevent calcium buildup and plaque on your teeth and restoration work. Dental plaque is a breeding ground for bacteria that feeds on the debris in your mouth, producing toxins. When you remove the plaque from your teeth the toxins are also removed, leaving your mouth healthier.
  • Flossing once a day is essential. If you have a dental bridge, you must clean underneath it. Special flossing tools are available to help you accomplish this. When you clean around your dental crowns, be careful not to pull upwards on the floss, but instead to draw the floss through so as not to put undue pressure on the crown, perhaps loosening it.
  • Anti-bacterial mouth rinses are an excellent way to reduce bacteria in the mouth that leads to plaque and decay.
  • Do not eat hard or sticky foods, especially hard or gummy candy. Never chew ice, as this can damage your dental crowns or bridges, requiring you to visit the dentist again for repairs.
  • Eat foods that are high in nutrients, especially calcium, ensuring that your teeth, gums and bones stay healthy and able to support your dental restoration.
  • Always be certain to visit your dentist regularly for professional checkups and cleanings.

Your dental crowns and bridges will have increased longevity if you follow these tips.

Cosmetic Dentist Shreveport LA

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Typical Services in General Dentistry

There is no good excuse for neglecting regular visits to your general dentist. It’s the best way to keep your oral health in tip-top shape so that you can enjoy the benefits of a lifelong attractive and functional smile. General dentists offer a broad range of services. These fall into several categories: preventive and diagnostic, restorative, and cosmetic. Each grouping has its own procedures and treatments that allow the dentist to cater to those dental goals.

Preventive and Diagnostic
The goal of preventive dentistry is to stop dental issues from developing or worsening. Typical preventive procedures include thorough examinations, applying dental sealants to protect teeth, scaling to remove plaque and tartar with an ultrasonic tool, and fluoride treatments to help prevent tooth decay. Diagnostic tools are employed to identify issues that are not as easy to spot upon examination, such as X-rays and oral cameras.

Restorative
Correcting existing dental problems is the purpose of restorative treatment. General dentists perform many procedures that fall into this category, some of which are:

  • Fillings to repair cavities and restore tooth function, or to repair tooth chips or breaks
  • Root canal therapy to remove infected tooth pulp and replace it with safe material that serves to save a badly damaged tooth
  • Dental implants that are inserted into the jaw bone to simulate a new tooth root for a missing tooth, and an artificial tooth on top to give you back full function and appearance
  • Crowns to cover a damaged tooth with a natural looking and feeling restoration, while saving the existing tooth

Cosmetic
The focus of cosmetic dental procedures is on the aesthetics of your smile. Veneers, teeth whitening, metal filling replacement, bonding, gum contouring, orthodontics, and more all play a role in cosmetic dentistry.

Insurance
Keep in mind that dental insurance may be an important aspect of care for you and your family. If so, the dentists at Broadmoor Family Dental in Shreveport, LA are happy to help by accepting insurance coverage from Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Louisiana, MetLife, and Cigna. Speak to our office staff today to see if your dental plan applies.

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Oral Health Concerns for Middle Aged Folks

As we age, our birthdays tend to bring new oral health issues along with them. It’s a fact of life that our teeth and gums are impacted by our age.

Here are some common problems to watch for, and suggestions for treatment.

Gum disease
Regular dental checkups and cleanings are vital to avoid gum disease. The first stage is called gingivitis and it’s reversible. If untreated, it can lead to a very serious advanced stage called periodontitis. You may not experience signs of gum disease, so practicing good oral hygiene and seeing your dentist are the best ways to keep it at bay.

Tooth sensitivity
If cold or hot foods cause you discomfort, you have a common problem called tooth sensitivity. It can result from decay, worn fillings, gum disease, broken teeth, or exposed roots. Your dentist may recommend toothpastes designed to reduce sensitivity, or other treatments based on the cause of your problem. Good oral hygiene can help with sensitivity also.

Missing teeth
If you are missing any teeth, it not only looks unappealing but it can also affect your ability to eat and speak. Your other teeth may move, and bone loss can occur. Discuss treatment options with your dentist because you might be able to restore your smile. Bridges, implants, and dentures are a few of the dental advances that might help.

Dry mouth
Medicines and some health conditions often cause your mouth to be overly dry. Having a dry mouth is uncomfortable, but it also can seriously impact your teeth and gums. Without saliva to naturally clean your mouth, the risks of tooth decay and other problems increase. Ask your dentist to look for signs of decay, and to help you identify the cause for your dry mouth. Be sure to tell your dentist about your medical history and medications.

Oral cancer

Oral cancer can include your gums, lips, cheeks, tongue, jaw, throat, or soft palate. It sometimes begins with just a tiny spot or swollen area, so regular dental checkups can help catch this disease early. A variety of treatment options are available, but early detection makes a difference.

We treat the entire family at Broadmoor Family Dental in Shreveport LA

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How Does Chewing Gum Affect my Teeth?

Gone are the days when chewing gum is considered poor etiquette. In today’s society, you can find people chewing gum in business meetings, church, and just about every other situation. With gum chewing so prevalent, you may have wondered what it’s doing to people’s teeth. You may be surprised to learn that research shows that chewing sugarless gum has a number of dental benefits.

Let’s see how it can actually be a helpful addition to your oral care routine.

Saliva flow
Chewing sugarless gum increases the flow of saliva in your mouth, which rinses away food particles. Saliva also neutralizes acids that result from bacteria in your mouth that can lead to tooth decay. Known to carry with it calcium and phosphate, increased saliva flow also helps strengthen your tooth enamel.

ADA acceptance
Choose gum with the American Dental Association (ADA) Seal, indicating it as met the required safety and effectiveness criteria. This approval means that you can trust the gum’s packaging and labeling to be true.

Sugarless
The only gums carrying the ADA Seal are sugarless. They contain sweeteners that don’t cause cavities, like aspartame, mannitol, sorbitol, or xylitol.  Chewing gum with xylitol is especially recommended, because it has been shown to combat tooth decay and cavities.

Dental hygiene
Even though chewing gum can be beneficial, remember that brushing and flossing are still the best ways to care for your teeth. Brush twice a day with fluoride toothpaste, and floss every day to remove plaque and debris between your teeth. Between these dental hygiene tasks, however, it is acceptable to chew sugarless gum to continue caring for your mouth during the day.

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