Posts for: July, 2015
It might seem that supermodels have a fairly easy life — except for the fact that they are expected to look perfect whenever they’re in front of a camera. Sometimes that’s easy — but other times, it can be pretty difficult. Just ask Chrissy Teigen: Recently, she was in Bangkok, Thailand, filming a restaurant scene for the TV travel series The Getaway, when some temporary restorations (bonding) on her teeth ended up in her food.
As she recounted in an interview, “I was… like, ‘Oh my god, is my tooth going to fall out on camera?’ This is going to be horrible.” Yet despite the mishap, Teigen managed to finish the scene — and to keep looking flawless. What caused her dental dilemma? “I had chipped my front tooth so I had temporaries in,” she explained. “I’m a grinder. I grind like crazy at night time. I had temporary teeth in that I actually ground off on the flight to Thailand.”
Like stress, teeth grinding is a problem that can affect anyone, supermodel or not. In fact, the two conditions are often related. Sometimes, the habit of bruxism (teeth clenching and grinding) occurs during the day, when you’re trying to cope with a stressful situation. Other times, it can occur at night — even while you’re asleep, so you retain no memory of it in the morning. Either way, it’s a behavior that can seriously damage your teeth.
When teeth are constantly subjected to the extreme forces produced by clenching and grinding, their hard outer covering (enamel) can quickly start to wear away. In time, teeth can become chipped, worn down — even loose! Any dental work on those teeth, such as fillings, bonded areas and crowns, may also be damaged, start to crumble or fall out. Your teeth may become extremely sensitive to hot and cold because of the lack of sufficient enamel. Bruxism can also result in headaches and jaw pain, due in part to the stress placed on muscles of the jaw and face.
You may not be aware of your own teeth-grinding behavior — but if you notice these symptoms, you might have a grinding problem. Likewise, after your routine dental exam, we may alert you to the possibility that you’re a “bruxer.” So what can you do about teeth clenching and grinding?
We can suggest a number of treatments, ranging from lifestyle changes to dental appliances or procedures. Becoming aware of the behavior is a good first step; in some cases, that may be all that’s needed to start controlling the habit. Finding healthy ways to relieve stress — meditation, relaxation, a warm bath and a soothing environment — may also help. If nighttime grinding keeps occurring, an “occlusal guard” (nightguard) may be recommended. This comfortable device is worn in the mouth at night, to protect teeth from damage. If a minor bite problem exists, it can sometimes be remedied with a simple procedure; in more complex situations, orthodontic work might be recommended.
Teeth grinding at night can damage your smile — but you don’t have to take it lying down! If you have questions about bruxism, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can learn more by reading the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Stress & Tooth Habits” and “When Children Grind Their Teeth.”
Good oral health is certainly one of our most prized possessions. A bright, sparkling smile speaks volumes about systemic health, and it helps people feel confident and good about themselves.
However, have you considered what your breath is saying about you and your dental health? Bad breath, clinically termed halitosis, is often a sign that something is wrong. If you or a loved one notices a foul odor frequently coming from your mouth, consult one of the expert and compassionate dentists at Mississaugua Dental Arts. They can assess your bad breath problem and suggest ways to resolve it.
Causes of Halitosis
Day to day living plays a big part in halitosis. When this is the case, the bad breath is easier to correct. For instance, people who eat a lot of aromatic vegetables, such as onions and garlic, have halitosis because the lungs retain the odors and breathe them out with each exhalation. Athletes and people on weight reduction diets may have bad breath because they are not eating or drinking enough, and their mouths are dry. So, better oral hygiene and good hydration helps reduce or eliminate the problem.
Chronic dry mouth is called xerostomia. Certain medical conditions such as COPD and snoring cause xerostomia and its accompanying breath odor. Some medications do, too. Also, halitosis often originates in serious systemic conditions such as:
- uncontrolled diabetes
- liver or kidney failure
- severe diarrhea
- certain STDs
- gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
- smoking and chewing tobacco
- viral and bacterial sore throats
- periodontal disease (gum disease)
When a dentist suspects systemic diseases, he or she refers the patient to the primary care physician. However, periodontal disease is within the dentist's scope of practice. Oral bacteria in accumulated plaque and tartar at and below the gum line cause red, swollen, puffy gums. When unchecked, gum and bone recession and tooth loss result. Periodontal disease requires professional cleaning to remove tartar and heal gum pockets.
Your Mississauga cosmetic dentist recommends several strategies to relieve halitosis. The most important is diligent home hygiene. Brush twice daily, and floss each day to remove plaque and food particles from tooth surfaces and the gums. Gently brush cheeks, roof of the mouth and the tongue, too. Doctors at the Mayo Clinic state that the tongue, with its bumpy, uneven texture, harbors germs and food residues which lead to bad breath. So take extra care to clean it, especially toward the back of the mouth.
Be sure to see one of the dentists at Mississauga Dental Arts for semi-annual cleanings and check-ups. Doctors Raj , Rob, and Ilnaz inspect patients' mouths for signs of decay, gum disease, and oral cancer. A professional cleaning brings teeth back to a tartar-free shine. Sometimes, dentists recommend special mouth rinses to help with stubborn halitosis that is not disease-related.
Contact Mississauga Dental Arts for an Appointment
If you are wondering about halitosis, don't be embarrassed. Contact this award-winning general and cosmetic dentistry practice for an appointment!
Unlike the natural tooth it replaces, a dental implant is impervious to decay. But don’t think that means you can relax your oral hygiene habits — even though the implant itself can’t be infected, the surrounding gum tissues and bone can. And if they’re not properly cared for you might eventually lose the implant.
In fact, implants may be more susceptible to problems from impacted food that becomes wedged between the gums and teeth than their natural counterparts. Natural teeth are connected to the jaw by way of a resilient, elastic tissue known as the periodontal ligament: the ligament resides in the space between the tooth root and the bone and attaches to both through tiny fibers. The bone and ligament are protected by an attachment of gum tissue that covers all of the surrounding bone and attaches to the root surface. The outer gum tissue surface is covered by a protein called keratin that makes it resistant to wear.
On the other hand, these periodontal ligament fibers don’t exist when implants are present as the implant is fastened directly to the bone. Because it doesn’t have this ligament attachment, and the gum tissues around can’t attach to the implant as with natural teeth, it may be more vulnerable to bacteria or trauma caused by food impaction. So, cleaning and caring for dental implants is just as important, if not more so than with natural teeth.
If the gums around an implant become infected and inflamed it could lead to peri-implantitis, a condition that can destroy the bone attachment between the implant and the bone. In other words, the loss of bone support can weaken the integration of the implant with the bone. As more and more attachment is lost, the implant can loosen and eventually be lost.
The best way to avoid this is with consistent daily hygiene and regular dental checkups. And, if you notice any signs of swelling or redness of the gums around an implant, contact us as soon as possible. The sooner we begin treatment to alleviate the infection, the less danger there will be of losing your implant.
If you would like more information on how to care for dental implants and other restorations, 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 “Infections around Implants.”