Posts for: April, 2017
Via a recent Instagram post, pop diva Ariana Grande became the latest young celebrity to publicly acknowledge a dental milestone: having her wisdom teeth removed. The singer of hits such as “Break Free” and “Problem” posted an after-surgery picture of herself (wearing her signature cat-eye eyeliner), with a caption addressed to her teeth: “Peace out, final three wisdom teeth. It’s been real.”
With the post, Grande joined several other celebs (including Lily Allen, Paris Hilton and Emile Hirsch) who have shared their dental surgery experience with fans. Will "wisdom teeth removal" become a new trending topic on social media? We aren’t sure — but we can explain a bit about the procedure, and why many younger adults may need it.
Technically called the “third molars,” wisdom teeth usually begin to emerge from the gums between the ages of 17 and 25 — presumably, around the same time that a certain amount of wisdom emerges. Most people have four of these big molars, which are located all the way in the back of the mouth, on the left and right sides of the upper and lower jaws.
But when wisdom teeth begin to appear, there’s often a problem: Many people don’t have enough space in their jaws to accommodate them. When these molars lack sufficient space to fully erupt (emerge), they are said to be “impacted.” Impacted teeth can cause a number of serious problems: These may include pain, an increased potential for bacterial infections, periodontal disease, and even the formation of cysts (pockets of infection below the gum line), which can eventually lead to tooth and bone loss.
In most cases, the best treatment for impacted wisdom teeth is extraction (removal) of the problem teeth. Wisdom tooth extraction is a routine, in-office procedure that is usually performed under local anesthesia or “conscious sedation,” a type of anesthesia where the patient remains conscious (able to breathe normally and respond to stimuli), but is free from any pain or distress. Anti-anxiety medications may also be given, especially for those who are apprehensive about dental procedures.
So if you find you need your wisdom teeth extracted, don’t be afraid to “Break Free” like Ariana Grande did; whether you post the results on social media is entirely up to you. If you would like more information about wisdom tooth extraction, please call our office to schedule a consultation. You can learn more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Wisdom Teeth” and “Removing Wisdom Teeth.”
When does dental care begin for a child? In the truest sense, before they're born. Although the first teeth won't erupt until months after birth, they're already forming in the baby's jaw while still in the womb.
During the prenatal period a baby's dental health depends on the mother's health and diet, especially consuming foods rich in calcium and other minerals and nutrients. Once the baby is born, the next dental milestone is the first appearance of primary teeth in the mouth. That's when you can begin brushing with just a smear of toothpaste on a toothbrush.
Perhaps, though, the most important step occurs around their first birthday. This is the recommended time for you to bring them to visit our office for the first time.
By then, many of their primary teeth have already come in. Even though they'll eventually lose these to make way for their permanent set, it's still important to take care of them. A primary tooth lost prematurely could cause the permanent tooth to come in improperly. Saving it by preventing and treating tooth decay with fluoride applications and sealants, fillings or even a modified root canal treatment could stop a bad bite and costly orthodontic treatment down the road.
Regular trips to the dentist benefit you as a caregiver as much as they do your child. We're your best source for information about dental health and development, including concerns like teething and thumb sucking. We'll also keep you informed on your child's growth process as their teeth, jaws and facial structure develop.
Beginning regular dental visits at age one will also help make your child comfortable with seeing the dentist, more readily than if you wait until they're older. It's an unfortunate fact that many people don't seek out the clinical dental care they need because of anxiety over visiting the dentist. Starting early, not only will your child be getting the best in dental care, they'll be developing a habit that can continue to benefit their oral health the rest of their lives.
If you would like more information on your child's dental care, 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 “Age One Dental Visit.”
Thanks to innovative cosmetic dentistry treatments, you don't have to accept a smile that's less than perfect. Winston Salem, NC, dentist Dr. Denise Perrotta explains how teeth whitening, veneers or one-day crowns can transform your smile.
It may have taken a few years for your teeth to have become dull or stained, but your smile can be renewed in as little as one hour when you visit Dr. Perrotta's Salem office for teeth whitening treatment. Teeth whitening is ever effective at removing extrinsic stains, the stains that affect the enamel of your teeth.
Hydrogen peroxide gel bleaches stains from your teeth quickly and safely. Although hydrogen peroxide is also the effective ingredient in many over-the-counter whitening kits, the dentist uses stronger concentrations that produce quicker results. Depending on the condition of your teeth, you may see a three to eight shade difference after your treatment.
Dental veneers are one of the most popular and versatile cosmetic dentistry options available today. The thin porcelain shells conceal imperfections but are equally effective in closing small gaps, lengthening teeth and hiding discolored areas. Veneers are a good choice if you want to change the look of your smile, but don't want to undergo any complicated dental procedures. Since veneers are only attached to the fronts of teeth, preparation for them is simple and just requires the buffing of your teeth to make a lasting impression. Veneers are available in many shades of white and are attached using dental cement.
Getting a crown used to involve making two trips to the dental office. During the first visit, your tooth is filed and an impression is made of your mouth. After the visit, you went home and waited a few weeks for the dental laboratory to finish your new crown. When you choose CEREC one-day crowns, you'll only need one visit. Dr. Perrotta uses the CEREC system's CAD/CAM software to design your crown, then mills it in her office, eliminating the need for a dental laboratory.
Could you benefit from one of these cosmetic dentistry treatments? Call Winston Salem, NC, dentist Dr. Denise Perrotta at (336) 760-9258 to schedule your appointment.