ONE STOP FOR DENTAL HEALTH



Wednesday, November 19, 2014

INVISALIGN


Invisalign is an orthodontic treatment method which uses a series of clear and removable teeth aligners as an alternative to the traditional orthodontic braces.


What is orthodontic treatment and why is it required?

Orthodontics is a specialized branch of dentistry which deals with correcting various kinds of malocclusions such as correcting the bite, incorrect spacing between the teeth, correct a crooked tooth or aligning the crowded teeth. All these malocclusions can be corrected through an orthodontic treatment, which involves the use of metal/ceramic braces or clear aligners such as invisalign.

It is very important to correct these malocclusions as mal occluded dentition has many bizarre affects on our dentition and the oral cavity as a whole. You might end up with tooth decay or gum disease which can deteriorate the health of your gums causing gum bleeding, bad breath and may also lead to loss of teeth. Studies show that these oral infections can lead to many more serious ailments such as diabetes, heart diseases, and pregnancy related problems. Straightening your teeth will also enhance your smile which boosts your self confidence, and also helps to maintain your oral hygiene, thus preventing the plaque buildup and tooth decay.

Orthodontic treatment with Invisalign

What is Invisalign?

Invisalign are a set of invisible, removable aligners that will be changed approximately every two weeks with next set of aligners. These aligners are individually fabricated for your teeth. You will be examined and instructed by your dentist during your appointed visits. You will be provided with a new set of aligners as your teeth moves little by little until they acquire the desired positions. Invisalign is the best way to achieve the desired treatment without interfering with your day to day life.
The duration of the treatment can be approximately one year, but as each case is different, the duration of the treatment may vary. After the treatment, you will be provided with a set of retainers to be worn at least during the nights which will be similar to the invisalign appliance. These retainers hold your teeth in its new position, as after the orthodontic treatment the teeth have the tendency to revert back to their previous positions. These retainers will help to establish the corrected teeth position.


Why choose invisalign over a traditional metal braces?

The major concern when one has to undergo an orthodontic treatment is the discomfort and the unpleasant look caused by the conventional metal braces.  This can be overcome with invisalign. This appliance allows you to do your day to day chores like brushing your teeth, eating the food without causing any hindrance. As invisalign are clear and invisible braces, it allows you to smile with confidence and is very gentle to your gums and cheeks. It also keeps you away from mouth ulcers, pain and discomfort that are generally caused by the metal braces.

The aligner trays are removable, and comfortable to wear. It has to be worn at least for 20-22 hours a day. One more advantage of invisalign is that there are no food restrictions during the treatment, so you can bite onto your favorite candy, nuts and any hard foods that are usually restricted with metal braces. You can remove them when you are brushing or flossing.

What cases can be treated with Invisalign?

Some malocclusions which can be treated with invisalign are crooked teeth, widely spaced teeth or crowded teeth, overbite, under bite, open bite and cross bite.

Teeth Spacing or crowded teeth can lead to gum problems and if left untreated can lead to periodontal disease which will affect the teeth and the surrounding bone.

Overbite is a condition where the upper teeth cover the lower teeth which may be caused by improper oral habits, hereditary, or abnormalities in the jaw bone. If not treated can lead to jaw pain, tooth decay, interfere with speech and cause wear of teeth.

Under bite is a condition of lower jaw protrusion beyond the upper jaw which causes the lower teeth to overlap the upper. This may be caused due to large lower jaw, oral habits such as tongue thrusting, which pushes the tongue against the lower teeth leading to lower jaw protrusion. Mouth breathing can also cause under bite. If left untreated it also leads to tooth decay, wear of enamel and pain in jaw joint.

Cross bite is a condition where teeth are reversely placed which leads to abnormal positioning of one or more teeth of one arch to opposing teeth of the other arch. This may be caused due to misappropriate jaw size, retained milk teeth leading to ectopic eruption of permanent teeth. If left untreated it may lead to gum problems, tooth decay, asymmetric growth of your face.

Open bite is a condition where teeth are unable to make a physical contact with the opposing teeth. This condition may be hereditary, or caused because of oral habits such as thumb sucking. If left untreated it may lead to difficulty in chewing and jaw joint problems.
Invisalign appliance takes us to the next level of modern orthodontic treatment which provides the comfort and convenience during the treatment. It overcomes all the problems that one faces with a traditional orthodontic treatment with metal braces yet keeping the treatment as effective as the metal braces.  


Wednesday, July 30, 2014

MUMPS IN KIDS

If you happen to observe your kid showing unusual symptoms, rejects to have his favorite food, irritated and disturbed, fever, tiredness followed by puffing of cheeks, then you can suspect your child to have a viral infection called mumps.

Mumps is a sudden occurring viral infection usually spread through saliva, affecting the parotid salivary glands. There is pain and swelling of the salivary glands on one or either sides in front of and below each ear and sometimes swelling of glands near the jaw line is also observed.

Mumps is highly contagious, spreads easily from person to person by sneezing, coughing and talking or touching the surface covered with infected droplets. It can be contagious from two days prior to the symptoms to 5 days after. The child needs to be isolated until he/she is no longer infectious. The infection generally lasts for 7-14days and resolves gradually.

There is no specific treatment for the infection. Palliative care like giving hot and cold packs for the parotid gland pain and swelling can be given. Pain relievers can be given. Make them drinks lots of water to maintain hydration.

Mumps can be prevented by vaccinating your child with MMR vaccine (Measles-Mumps-Rubella) given in two doses. This may be done at 12 months and 18 months or 15 months and 4-6 years.

Monday, March 31, 2014

IMPORTANCE OF REPLACING A MISSING TOOTH

The most ignored or neglected part of our body is our teeth. Most of us wonder why is it important to replace one missing tooth when there are other remaining teeth. Let’s discuss that in detail of what happens if the missing tooth/teeth are not replaced.

Our teeth are designed to work together to help us chew the food, speak and smile. When tooth/teeth are missing, there is a hindrance to all these actions. Missing tooth if not replaced will lead the adjacent teeth to shift to the empty space and create areas that are difficult to clean which eventually leads to gum problems and tooth decay leading to further tooth loss. It can also lead to excessive wear of these teeth. It can also lead to bite problems, when the upper and lower jaws don’t meet properly it can cause damage to the jaw joint. It can affect your general health, especially if your back teeth are missing, it may be difficult for you to chew certain foods which can lead to malnutrition and recurrent illness.

To avoid all these ill effects, it is very important and essential to replace the missing tooth/teeth to keep you fit and healthy. Advancements in modern dentistry have made it easier to replace a missing tooth using natural looking and functioning prosthetics.

There are different treatment methods to replace missing tooth/teeth which varies from case to case. It is always advisable to visit a dentist and discuss the treatment option that suits you the best.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

HOW TO CURE SLEEP APNEA AND SNORING WITH DENTAL APPLIANCES

A good night’s sleep is very important to face another new day afresh and energetic. Disturbed or improper sleep leaves you tired when you wake up in the next morning and keeps you unenergetic throughout the day causing hindrance to your activities.

What is Sleep apnea?
Sleep apnea is a condition where your airway is obstructed or interrupted while you are asleep. These breathing pauses may last for 10-20 seconds and might repeat several times during the sleep disturbing your natural sleep. As a result you end up having insufficient deep sleep.

The most common sleep apnea is Obstructive Sleep Apnea where the airway is blocked during sleep. During normal breathing the air passes through the airway which remains open. The airway consists of nose, mouth, throat and windpipe. In obstructive sleep apnea, the airway is collapsed and blocked. When you breathe in, the air tries to squeeze in through this narrowed air passage, which leads to snoring.

When the airway is blocked, there is little or no air flowing to the lungs leading to decreased blood oxygen levels. This in turn signals your brain to disturb your sleep to open up the airway. The normal breathing continues till the next episode of obstruction.

The biggest challenge is to identify the disorder and treat it appropriately. This condition can lead to many serious health problems such as high blood pressure, heart disease, and stroke. Proper diagnosis and treatment can prevent all the ill effects and help you lead a quality life.

What is Snoring?
Snoring is an obnoxious noise which is caused when inhaled air passes through the narrow airway. Generally, Long uvula or large tongue increases the speed and pressure of the inhaled air causing the soft tissues of the throat to vibrate. Snoring could be a symptom of sleep apnea but, not always.

There are various treatment modalities to treat these conditions:
  • Bringing some changes to our lifestyle like losing weight, quit smoking, avoid alcohol and heavy meals at least 2-3 hours prior to sleep and maintain regular sleep hours.
  • Using alternate breathing devices like CPAP which is Continuous Positive Airflow Pressure used to treat moderate to severe apnea. CPAP is a mask like device which provides a constant stream of air that keeps your breathing passages open during sleep.
  • Other treatment method include surgical correction of anatomical obstructions like flabby tongue, excessive tissue in the throat, nasal obstruction, enlarged uvula or tonsils that cause sleep apnea.
Dentist’s role in treating sleep apnea:
You must be wondering what role a dentist plays in treating a medical condition.
Oral appliances are effective in treating mild to moderate apnea. Oral appliance is a small plastic device which fits in mouth just like a mouth guard or a retainer. It helps prevent the tongue and the soft tissues to fall back and thus prevent the obstruction of airway. 

There are mainly two types of devices, one which is Tongue retaining appliance which holds the tongue in a forward position using a suction bulb and prevents the tongue to fall back during sleep, thus preventing the airway obstruction. Another is the Mandibular repositioning appliance which reposition and maintains the lower jaw in the protruded position thus pulling the tongue forward and opens the airway indirectly.


Early diagnosis and treatment of the condition is very important to prevent any ill effects caused by sleep apnea.

Friday, January 24, 2014

WHY VISIT A DENTIST REGULARLY

Though most of us know or are repeatedly reminded of visiting a dentist regularly, it is one of the most neglected aspects. Most of us don’t feel it important to get a dental health check up done unless and until the tooth starts troubling.

Now why is it so important to visit a dentist and what to expect during the visit?
The primary reason to visit a dentist is to keep a check on overall health of your teeth and the oral cavity as a whole. Dental visits on a regular basis not only help to detect any dental problems but also help to keep a check on your general health. A dental visit is recommended about every six months.

During a dental check up your dentist will examine all your teeth and gums to check if there is any sign of decay, infection or any unusual swelling or surface changes. This can also help to detect any serious health issues like oral cancer.

Your dentist might take a dental x-ray to view the depth of the decay, if at all exists and to check if there is any underlying infection and bone loss. This can help diagnose the problem better and deliver an appropriate treatment. 

Along with home maintenance such as tooth brushing and flossing, professional cleaning is also very crucial as it helps you get rid of plaque and calculus build up and improves your gum health.

Poor oral hygiene leads to several issues such as a tooth decay, gum infection, bone loss. Untreated gum infections have a greater chance of spreading to the other parts of your body through the blood stream. Evidence suggests that untreated gum infection contribute to the cause of many systemic diseases such as diabetes, heart disease and problems with pregnancy.

It is always advisable to have a follow up discussion with your dentist. This will help you understand the problem, if there is any and the kind of treatment you will be undergoing and how much will it cost you.
Visiting a dentist on a regular basis can prevent you from all these problems as prevention is always better than cure. This can avoid you from undergoing the painful episodes caused by your dental infection and also will spare you the time and expensive dental treatments.  

Get regular dental checkups to keep you healthy and happy and get timely treatment.  Remember a healthy mouth leads to a healthy body.