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    Brush Up on Dental Terms with This Glossary

    Last updated 13 hours ago

    If you want to properly care for your teeth and gums, it is important to understand common dental terminology. When you know what is going on in your mouth, you can improve your oral hygiene. Keep reading to learn the meaning behind some of the terms your dentist uses on a regular basis:

    Bruxism
    Bruxism is the clinical term for teeth grinding. If you consistently grind your teeth, it can cause TMD, which is a series of disorders in the temporomandibular joint that can cause excessive pain.

    Dental Crown
    The dentist fits a dental crown over a real tooth that is damaged or missing. This cap is shaped to look just like the natural teeth to restore an original appearance. Crowns can be placed over a real tooth or over a dental implant to provide the best aesthetic results.

    Orthodontics
    Orthodontics is a field of dentistry that specifically looks at the way the teeth and the jaw align. If your teeth are out of place, an orthodontist might suggest braces, Invisalign, or another kind of straightening treatment to correct the alignment issues.

    Periodontal Disease
    If you have a lot of plaque and bacteria in your mouth, they might eventually cause acid, which can lead to tooth decay, cavities, and inflammation in the gums. This inflammation causes infections called periodontal disease. If left untreated, periodontal disease can destroy the tissue and the bone surrounding the teeth and lead to tooth loss.

    Receding Gum
    This oral condition occurs when the gum separates from the teeth, which leaves large pockets in which bacteria can furrow and cause issues with the enamel and the bone.

    Schedule an appointment with West Chester Dental Arts to learn more about these and other dental terms that lead to healthy teeth and gums. From sedation dentistry to teeth whitening, we provide the services you need to maintain the integrity of your smile. For more information on our services or to schedule an appointment, visit us online or call (484) 881-3501.

    Types of Mouth Guards

    Last updated 2 days 14 hours ago

    Contact sports leave you very vulnerable to injuries that can affect your teeth and gums. If you are an athlete, you should wear a mouth guard to keep this area protected. Keep reading to learn about the types of mouth guards to find the best option for your needs:

    A stock mouth guard is a cheap option that comes pre-formed. Although they are the most affordable option, they often fit poorly and make it difficult to breathe and talk. Boil and bite mouth guards can somewhat shape to your teeth and gums after you soften them in water. It is important to follow the instructions exactly, however, or the mouth guard might not fit well. A custom-fitted mouth guard is the best option because your dentist makes it specifically for you. This kind of mouth guard offers the best fit, which means it keeps your teeth more protected than the other options.

    Come to West Chester Dental Arts to get fitted for a custom mouth guard so you can protect your teeth while you play sports. We also specialize in sedation dentistry, dental implants, and teeth whitening. To learn more, call (484) 881-3501. 

    Spotlight on Flap Surgery

    Last updated 6 days ago

    Periodontal disease is a serious condition that can destroy the tissue and bone that support your teeth. Once this destruction starts to occur, you will be left with large pockets around the teeth that create the ideal environment for more bacteria to fester and lead to larger oral health issues. If your periodontal disease has already progressed to this point, flap surgery could help. Keep reading to find out how:

    Removing Deep-Seated Tartar
    Your dentist uses flap surgery to reach beneath the gums and remove tartar deposits that have developed deeply into these pockets. Without this surgery, it is almost impossible to reach the bacteria that have made their way all the way into the pockets and prevent the gum disease from getting worse. Luckily, the dentist can gently remove it to reduce your risk for further periodontal issues.

    Reducing Periodontal Pockets
    Another benefit of this surgery is it allows the dentist to actually decrease the size of the periodontal pockets, which prevents further bacteria from finding their way inside. This also makes it easier for you to reach these areas with your toothbrush and floss to get your teeth and gums clean, which reduces your risk for more severe periodontal disease.

    Reshaping the Gum
    Once the procedure is complete, the dentist can use sutures to ensure that the gums are back in their original location. Flap surgery can shift your damaged gums back up to the teeth so the tissue fits the way it should. As long as you maintain a thorough oral hygiene routine and visit the dentist regularly after the surgery, this procedure should clear up your gum disease.

    If you have periodontal disease, schedule an appointment with the dentists at West Chester Dental Arts to get the care you need. Whether you have gingivitis or periodontitis, we can find the best treatment option for you. To learn more about our dental services like sedation dentistry, dental implants, and teeth whitening, visit us online or call (484) 881-3501.

    Dental Infection Control

    Last updated 8 days ago

    Your dentist and dental hygienists care about your safety, which is why they are diligent about infection control in the office. When you go in for a dental appointment, you should see a clean office and staff members who wear gloves, protective clothing, masks, and eyewear.

    In between each appointment, oral health professionals remove the gloves, wash their hands, and put on new gloves. They also clean and disinfect surfaces, sterilize instruments, and properly dispose of infectious waste. Learn more in this video.

    At West Chester Dental Arts, your safety is our primary concern. Our office is sterile and clean so we can provide you with the best dental services in Pennsylvania. To learn more about our sedation dentistry, dental implants, and teeth whitening services, call (484) 881-3501.

    Common Causes of Mouth Pain

    Last updated 13 days ago

    Mouth pain is almost always a sign of a larger issue. If you are experiencing discomfort in your mouth, you should visit your dentist to see if you are suffering from one of the following:

    Cavities
    When plaque and bacteria are left to develop on the teeth, they eventually cause acid, which can break down enamel and lead to tooth decay. Without the proper treatment, this decay will form holes in the teeth, or cavities. If you have one or more cavities, you might experience sensitivity to hot and cold foods or pain when you bite down.

    TMD
    TMD, or temporomandibular joint dysfunction, are issues resulting from problems in the muscles and joints of the jaw. You might experience pain from TMD if you grind your teeth, if the soft cushion of the jaw is not in the right position, if you have osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis in the jaw joint, or if you are very stressed. TMD often leads to pain in the face, jaw, neck, and shoulders.

    Wisdom Teeth
    The wisdom teeth do not usually emerge until the late teens or early twenties. If someone does not have enough room in their mouth for these extra molars or if the teeth start to grow in sideways, it can cause a lot of pain at the back of the mouth. Your dentist will tell you whether or not you should have these teeth extracted to avoid this kind of mouth pain.

    Infections
    If you have consistent pain as well as swelling in your gums that makes your teeth extremely sensitive, you might have an infection. You should see your dentist as soon as possible to get the treatment you need to get rid of this infection.

    Whether you have pain in your mouth or just need a checkup, West Chester Dental Arts is here for you. Our dental office provides some of the best oral health services in West Chester, Pennsylvania so you can find relief for your symptoms. To learn more, call (484) 881-3501.

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