Porteous Family Dentistry
Ten years ago, it was rare to see braces on the teeth of an adult. Options for straightening teeth simply did not exist widely for the adult population. It wasn’t that adults couldn’t have braces, it was just that they didn’t want to be seen in public with them. After all, it’s one thing to see a teenager with metal brackets and wires in his or her mouth, but it’s an entirely different matter to see an adult that way.
Not everyone has been presented the opportunity to have braces. For many people who did not have the option as a teen, they simply had to continue their life with crooked, crowded, or over-spaced teeth.
Enter Invisalign®. The invention of clear braces has opened up the door to an improved smile for adults no matter what their age. In fact, we have Invisalign® patients that span the entire range of ages, from teens to seniors in the later stages of life.
Why? Invisalign® knows no age. Because it is nearly invisible, it is a much more realistic choice for adults than traditional braces were in the past. Invisalign® is also removable, allowing you to live a more “normal” life in terms of diet, exercise and oral hygiene.
If you are interested in an enhanced smile, Invisalign® might be the right first step for you. Give us a call for more information!
Jun 3rd, 2015 7:15 am
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What’s involved in a dental implant? Do they hurt? Can anyone get them? There are a lot of questions surrounding dental implants but one thing is certain; they’ve been reconstructing smiles for over 35 years with amazing results. But what’s the fuss surrounding dental implants and are they really worth it? Lets answer some question to help you decide for yourself.
Can anyone get a dental implant? Anyone who is healthy enough to get a dental implant can get one as long as they have enough bone to hold the implant. This is where bone grafting comes in for those who have been told their jawbone won’t hold an implant. Keeping up with regular oral hygiene is also an important factor and heavy smokers may be told it’s not a safe option.
What exactly is a dental implant? A dental implant replaces your tooth root with a metal rod. It provides a solid structure on which to place a new tooth that is made to match your real teeth. Dental implants not only improve the overall look of your smile but they’re durable, convenient, and easy to take care of.
What are the steps to getting a dental implant? As your doctor, we will want to develop an individualized treatment plan that focuses on your specific needs. Once we have agreed on a treatment plan, the next step will be the placement of the implant in your jaw. The implant is made of titanium and once placed the jawbone will actually begin to grow around it. In about six to twelve weeks the implant will have completely bonded to your jaw and it will be time to attach a small post that connects your new tooth to the implant. We create a mold of your bite that allows us to create your new tooth. This replacement tooth is then attached to the post and the implant process is complete!
Lastly, how painful are dental implants and are they difficult to take care of? Most patients have said they experienced very little discomfort when receiving their implant. Many have even said the process is much less painful than a tooth extraction. Mild pain that may occur for a few days after you receive your implant can be treated with over-the-counter pain medication. Dental implants require the same care as your real teeth but generally they are much easier to clean and you don’t have to worry about cavities.
We hope this answers some of the questions surrounding dental implants. If you’re missing a tooth or teeth, give us a call to ask more about the procedure. We’ve seen many patients leave happy and comfortable with their improved smile!
May 20th, 2015 7:15 am
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Do you know when your child should be expecting their first new teeth as a baby? How about when they should be loosing those baby teeth? As with many things in development, every child is different and has a different time frame for each stage, but we’ll give you a general idea of when you can expect these different stages to occur: from the appearance of baby teeth to the arrival of permanent adult teeth.
4 to 7 months:
Usually the two front lower teeth begin to be exposed. Gums may become red and swollen where the teeth are cutting through.
Fun Fact: Lower teeth usually come in before the upper teeth.
8 to 12 months:
Upper middle teeth tend to come in next (it is common for girls to get their baby teeth before boys!)
9 to 16 months:
Teeth on both sides of the middle teeth begin to come in, for both the top and bottom.
Did You Know: Teeth usually erupt in pairs! One on the right, one on the left!
12 to 19 months:
Molars come in on the top and bottom about the same time.
16 to 23 months:
Canines (sharp, pointed teeth) begin to emerge.
Tooth Truths: Baby teeth are usually brighter and whiter than permanent teeth, and are much smaller.
2 to 3 years:
Second molars come in, and by now your child should almost completely have a full set of 20 teeth! By 4 years old, jaw and facial bones continue to grow to allow more space for the incoming permanent teeth.
–NOTE: If your baby does not show signs of bottom teeth by 18 months, mention it to your doctor. Do not be alarmed, every child is different and some don’t begin showing teeth until after their first birthday, and catch up without any problems.
LOOSING TEETH/ADULT TEETH
6 to 12 years:
Children begin loosing teeth, they can be lost in any order, but it is common to lose them in the same order they came in, starting with the front middle, gradually going back further in the mouth.
Once your child has lost all of their baby teeth, their mouth now consists of 28 permanent teeth. Four wisdom teeth will begin to appear between 17 to 21 years old, however 85% of people end up having their wisdom teeth removed, so don’t get used to them for too long!
May 6th, 2015 7:05 am
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Many parents discover, on the way home from the hospital, the magic of the binky! Baby is crying but not hungry? Give her a binky, problem solved!
However, beyond age 3, frequent pacifier use (or thumb-sucking) can have a negative effect on the way their bite develops. It can cause crooked or outward tipping upper teeth and jaw alignment issues. That is why we recommend that children begin the process of weaning off of pacifier-use by the age of 3.
To which we hear you respond, “easier said than done”. We understand that it can be a challenging process, so we would like to offer these tips for weaning from the pacifier.
- Give them an end date: Let them know a few weeks ahead of time leading up to the time when you will be getting rid of the pacifier. For example, you might tell your child “after your third birthday, we won’t be using Binkie anymore because you are becoming a big kid. “
- Make it Fun! Have them exchange the binkie for a toy at the toy store, or have a celebration for becoming a “big kid” who doesn’t use a pacifier anymore. More than one parent has had success with the “Binkie Fairy”!
- Offer extra support during the transition. They may have given up the pacifier, but that doesn’t mean they still don’t need soothing from external sources. Be ready with extra hugs, a favorite stuffed animal or blankie and distractions as needed.
- Step down approach. If cold-turkey seems like it will be too difficult for your child, a step-down approach may be better. First, have them give put the pacifier away during the day when they are awake. Then during naps. And finally during nighttime sleep.
- Don’t be surprised if your child gives up the pacifier willingly. For some children, the transition is actually not too difficult, they are simply ready to move on without their pacifier and may even just “hand it over” to you one day.
Apr 22nd, 2015 9:26 am
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Over the last decade, at-home tooth whitening systems have become more abundant, more varied, and more affordable. A quick walk through your local drug store is all you need to do to know that there is an endless supply of teeth bleaching treatments that you can do at home to achieve a whiter smile.
Here are the top five reasons that we recommend that you come see us first if you are interested in whitening your smile:
- Whiter whitening: Over the counter bleaching products can only contain 10% peroxide, while our in-office treatments can contain 25-40% peroxide, offering a whiter white!
- Quicker: The higher concentration of peroxide combined with other safety and acceleration tools like lasers allow us to whiten your teeth much more quickly than can be done at home.
- Fewer Side Effects: At home, some people experience damage to the tooth or surrounding gum area when whitening their teeth, causing pain or sensitivity. By contrast, in the office, we have access to preventative tools that can protect your gums and teeth from damage from bleaching.
- Always Examine First! It is always wise to have an oral exam prior to your whitening procedure, as we can detect potential problems, areas that are prone to sensitivity, and even help you choose your best path to a whiter smile.
- Best of Both Worlds: If you still want to try at-home treatments, give us a call. We can send you home with approved whitening treatments to give you the protection, convenience and the whiter smile that you desire.
Apr 8th, 2015 9:25 am
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One of the most common questions we hear from patients when it comes to dental implants is “Why does it take three separate procedures?”
It helps to understand that within the entire dental implant process, there are not just three stages, there are also three important parts to the final product that replaces your tooth. First, there is the implant itself, which is the metal rod that we surgically implant into the bone. Next, there is the abutment, which connects the implant to the artificial tooth. And lastly, the crown (or prosthetic tooth) itself.
The fact that the process has three physical components alone doesn’t tell the whole story though. Here, we explain why the most commonly employed dental implant method is split up into three separate procedures.
Step One: Placing the Implant
The first stage of the dental implant process is to bury the implant in the jaw bone via a surgical procedure. The dental implant replaces the tooth root, and requires healing time. During this healing time, osseointegration (the integration of the bone with the implant itself) occurs. The bone cells actually attach to the implant rod, filling in the spaces to secure the implant in place for permanent residency. The healing time usually takes from 3-6 months.
Step Two: Placing the Abutment
The abutment is a post that connects the implant to the prosthetic tooth. Essentially, the abutment is a bridge that spans through the gum line so that the implant itself remains buried. As with the implant, the abutment has a healing period of its own. The gum around the abutment must heal and form a cuff or collar around it before the crown can be placed.
Step Three: The Prosthetic Tooth
Once the implant site and abutment have successfully integrated, the prosthetic tooth is fabricated and installed.
If you have any questions about the dental implant process, give us a call!
Mar 25th, 2015 9:24 am
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You may have heard the recent claim that a mixture of fruit and baking soda applied to the teeth will whiten them dramatically, inexpensively and in a much more “organic” way than traditional bleaching methods.
In particular, young adults and teens have shown themselves to be susceptible to this advice. They readily experiment with it and spread the idea throughout their community because the materials involved are so easily accessible.
While the claim has some merit and certainly comes from well-meaning sources, we feel that we should set the record straight. New research done on the subject from Professor So Ran Kwon of the University of Iowa shows that while the mixture does brighten the smile a bit, it does so merely by removing superficial debris. So although the teeth may look whiter, the effect is short-lived. As plaque and debris build up again, the teeth will darken.
In addition to that, the fruit and baking soda mixture method may reduce the surface hardness of your teeth, leaving them vulnerable to decay.
To achieve a permanently whiter smile, what you really need is a substance that penetrates into teeth and breaks down stain molecules, whitening teeth from the inside out for better and longer-lasting results.
Mar 11th, 2015 9:22 am
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Some patients come to us loving their smile but wanting just a little bit more in terms of aesthetics. To perfect an already great smile, we may suggest porcelain veneers. Porcelain veneers are often our go-to tool to correct minor imperfections on the surface of teeth or spacing issues.
Q: Are veneers heavy or thick? Will I feel them in my mouth?
A: No, in fact veneers are thinner than a fingernail, once they are in place you won’t even know they are there!
Q: How long do they last?
A: Properly installed, veneers can last from 10-20 years. A great investment for an enhanced smile!
Q: How are they attached? Can they fall off?
A: Veneers are attached to your tooth with a very strong bonding compound. They do not fall off and provide years of durable use.
Q: Do veneers look like natural teeth?
A: Porcelain is the perfect material to copy tooth enamel, as it is incorporates luster, shine and translucence to look just like your natural teeth.
Q: What if the surrounding teeth are a different color?
A: Generally what we recommend is that we use a whiter shade of porcelain for the veneer and perform tooth whitening in conjunction with the veneer process to give you a perfect match throughout your mouth.
Q: Do veneers stain?
A: No, porcelain veneers do not stain, even over time.
If you want to take your smile from “okay” to “stunning”, ask us if veneers are a good option for you!
Feb 25th, 2015 9:21 am
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When most of us think of invisible braces such as Invisalign®, we naturally assume that their sole purpose is to enhance the aesthetic value of one’s smile.
And to a certain extent that assumption is true. For most people with braces of any type, the primary goal of straightening their teeth is improving their look. But did you know that there are actually added health benefits to having a straighter smile as well?
Here, we outline just a few reasons, outside of the obvious aesthetic benefits, that invisible braces can help you:
- Periodontal Health: Overcrowded teeth can result in swollen, red, irritated gums. More often than not, these symptoms are the result of periodontal disease. Braces help to straighten and evenly space teeth to allow for enhanced gum health.
- Better Cleaning Access: Because the clear teeth aligners are removable, you can do a better job of brushing and flossing your teeth, just as you would without braces. By contrast, traditional metal braces limit access to the surfaces and in-between areas of teeth, making it difficult to maintain a good brushing and flossing routine.
- Healthy Diet: Invisible braces are removable, which means that there are no restrictions to what you eat. This allows you to continue your healthy eating habits just as if you didn’t have braces at all. With traditional metal wires and braces, however, some people fall into the trap of eating only soft foods and thus miss out on much-needed nutrients.
- Overall Health: Because oral infections are thought to be related to other health issues in the body such as an increased risk of heart disease, stroke and diabetes, keeping your teeth properly spaced and straightened is an important first step toward better health throughout your body.
Allow us to enhance your smile both aesthetically and from an oral health standpoint as well with invisible braces!
Feb 11th, 2015 8:19 am
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You already know how important I am to your oral health. That’s why you brush your teeth for two minutes twice a day.
However, are you aware of how much bacteria lives on your toothbrush? Researchers have found that a single toothbrush can have as many as 10 million germs and bacteria! But, don’t let this statistic scare you away from brushing. These bacteria aren’t a huge threat to your teeth according to Everydayhealth.com, because its been researched that these germs don’t make people sick. That’s because toothpaste is made with an anti-germ component.
So what is your toothbrush trying to tell you to help prevent all these germs?
It’s important that you use your toothbrush correctly. Always make sure to rinse it in tap water and give it time to air dry. Germs need moisture to survive, so as long as you give your brush enough time to dry before using it, you should be fine. Make sure not to leave any toothpaste or debris in the head of your brush, rinse it well!
2. Store me upright!
When you’re at home, store your toothbrush upright in a cup or toothbrush holder. This allows it to air dry, which will help kill those germs.
On the road? When traveling make sure to keep your toothbrush in a travel holder, that way it isn’t rolling around uncovered and collecting bacteria in your bag.
If you really want to be in the clear you can soak your too
thbrush in a toothbrush sanitizer or in mouth wash. Another alternative to kill germs is dipping your toothbrush in boiling water for 5-10 seconds.
Don’t ever attempt to microwave or dishwasher your toothbrush, these appliances will damage your toothbrush!
3. Don’t brush where you flush!
Try to store your toothbrush as far away as possible from the toilet. This is because each toilet flush sends a spray of bacteria into the air and I’m sure you don’t want that near your open toothbrush! We recommend at least 3 feet!
4. I only want one owner!
Don’t share! Forget what your kindergarden teacher told you about sharing. When it comes to toothbrushes, it’s an absolute no! No matter how close you may be to that person, whether it’s your sibling or spouse, don’t ever use their toothbrush.
5. It’s time for us to say Goodbye!
The American Dental Association recommends getting a new toothbrush about every three months.
This also depends on the wear of the bristles. Some people brush with a heavy hand and therefore their bristles may wear out sooner. It’s important to judge when it’s time for a replacement based upon the bristles, so don’t mark it in your calendar, just keep a look at your bristles. If you have children be sure to check their
brushes regularly because they will probably need to be replaced more often.
6. Let me remind you!
Some toothbrush brands such as Oral-B feature color changing bristles. That way after a few months of use your reminded that it’s time!
You can also pick up the habit of replacing your toothbrush the first day of every season. That way you’re replacing it four times a year, with an average of 3 months per a brush.
Jan 28th, 2015 8:00 am
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