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What is a tooth crown?

Getting a tooth crowned kind of sounds painful, doesn’t it? Just what exactly is a crown, what does it do, and when do you need one?

What is a tooth crown?

Basically, a crown is a tooth shaped cap designed to cover a tooth. It helps to restore the size, shape, strength, and aesthetic value of a tooth. Once the tooth is prepared, the crown covers the existing visible tooth from the gum line, and is cemented in place. Crowns come in a variety of appearances and materials ranging from stainless steel, to porcelain or ceramic. Below are a few of the purposes of crowns:

  • Tooth damage – If a tooth has been damaged by decay, cracked, or worn down, a crown can be added to help protect it. In some places, it can be added to cover a large filling where not much of the tooth remains, to help support it.
  • Bridge Support – A crown can be placed on either side of a gap, if an individual is missing a tooth or teeth, with the missing tooth or teeth in the middle.
  • Cosmetics – Crowns can be used to cover discolored or misshapen teeth. If a person has chipped front teeth from an injury, crowns can be used. They are also used to top off a dental implant.

Remember, if you have any questions regarding crowns or anything regarding dental care, contact Dr. Gray’s office to speak with someone or to schedule an appointment!

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Dentist Edmond: Beware the effects of pool water on enamal

Dentist Edmond recommends monitoring pH levels in pools

It’s starting to get hotter outside and the pools are close to opening up for the Summer. One of the best ways to cool off during a hot summers day is to relax by or in the pool! Especially if the pool is in your backyard! You may have never considered that the chlorine levels in the water might not be properly balanced. But if they’re not, they can damage the enamel of your tooth. Dentist Edmond is here to share some more information from the New York University of Dentistry about this subject.

A few years ago, Dr. Leila Jahangiri, the clinical associate professor and the chair of NYUCD’s Department of Prosthodontics, spoke about what was found when homeowners attempted to maintain pools of their own. It’s understandable that homeowners would want to save some money by avoiding having to hire professionals to help maintain their pools, it can be dangerous decision. Not having a professional help maintain your pool can often lead to improper pH levels in your water which can, according to Jahangiri, “result in irreversible damage to one’s teeth.”

She also added that “it is difficult balance to maintain home pools properly” and that “proper pool chlorine and pH levels need to be monitored and maintained on a weekly basis.”

Our dentist Edmond knows you might be wondering what a little lab work research could really prove, but rest assured it was more than an educated guess. Jahangiri observed first-hand, in a 52-year old male patient, the effects of improper pool pH levels. His teeth were extremely sensitive and had dark staining and rapid enamel loss over a short, 5 month period. This was a result of his 90 minute swimming exercise routine.

So, before you go diving into the cold, refreshing water in your backyard pool, the dentist Edmond hopes you’ll consider carefully how you plan to maintain proper pH and chlorine levels, for the sake of your pearly whites!

Should you feel the need to have a dental checkup and ensure that things are on the right track with your teeth, don’t hesitate to come and see our Edmond dentist. You may make an appointment with our Edmond dentist at Wallace Family Dentistry by calling 405-340-0411.

If you need a dental checkup, call Philip Gray, DDS, Dentist Edmond today at 405-330-5458 and schedule an appointment!

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Edmond Dentist: Charcoal toothpaste fact or fiction?

Does brushing with charcoal really work?

You’ve probably seen it going around on nutrition blogs and on social media. Brushing your teeth with substances like activated charcoal will help make your teeth whiter and shinier. It sounds simple right? But does it really do anything for your teeth. The short answer is it can do something, but not in the way you’re hoping. The Edmond dentist is here to lay down what’s fact and what’s fiction about brushing with activated charcoal.

Activated charcoal is supposed to work by cleaning and polishing the enamel on your teeth to clear away the plaque and build-up around them. Elements within the charcoal and the abrasive texture scrub away the bad stuff and leave your teeth shining white.  That’s what it’s supposed to do anyway.

But, according to a study done by the Journal of the American Dental Association there simply isn’t any evidence that that’s the case. Furthermore, claims that brushing with charcoal was 100% safe also could not be verified. More studies are being done but at present there simply is no scientific basis that charcoal does anything for the teeth…except.

Remember when we said activated charcoal can do something? Well if the charcoal is too abrasive, and therefore not approved by the ADA, it can actually wear away the protective enamel on your teeth and expose the underlying dentin. It’s bad enough you might be brushing away your teeth’s best defense, but to add to it dentin is usually yellow meaning your teeth can actually look worse by brushing with charcoal.

So what are the best ways to keep your teeth healthy and shiny? The same ones that have always been: Brushing twice a day, not smoking, flossing, and regular dentist visits.

Schedule an appointment today with Philip Gray, Edmond dentist, and get your smile looking awesome!

Why You Should Choose Sugarless Gum - Dentist Edmond

Dentist Edmond: Why You Should Choose Sugarless Gum

Dentist Edmond: How You Can Chew Gum And Prevent Cavities

Some people like to chew gum as a way to prevent snacking on other things they shouldn’t be eating, to help kick their smoking habit, or perhaps it’s just a habit to chew gum. No matter what your reason for wanting to chew gum, you probably don’t want to cause your teeth to decay, right? Our dentist in Edmond says that it’s possible to enjoy chewing gum, as long as you do it responsibly.

If you only like chewing gum for the sugar rush, you’re in trouble! If you care more about your dental hygiene, then consider that many brands of gum are full of sugar. This is not good for your teeth as the sugar is utilized by plaque bacteria in one’s mouth to produce acids which does damage to the protective layer on your teeth, or enamel. When the enamel is no longer intact it leads to cavities and other potential dental problems. Our dentist in Edmond has seen this happen!

So what can you do? Opt for sugarless gum, instead.

Some clinical studies have shown that chewing sugarless gum for 20 minutes after eating a meal can help prevent tooth decay, or cavities. Sugarless gum also helps to increase saliva in the mouth to wash away food and debris.

Here’s why having a healthy amount of saliva matters:

  • It can neutralize the acids produced by bacteria in your mouth.
  • It can help fight diseases in the mouth.
  • Increased saliva provides more calcium and phosphates (to strengthen enamel on teeth).

Our dentist in Edmond agrees with the promise that the American Dental Association (ADA) forth in that their products follow safety guidelines. So, when you are looking for a sugarless gum brand in the grocery store, seek out the ADA seal on the label as their approved gums will contain less harmful sweeteners instead of sugar such as; aspartame, xylitol, sorbitol, and mannitol.

With that being said, our dentist in Edmond also suggests maintaining a daily brushing, flossing, and rinsing routine to ensure that your teeth remain as clean and healthy as possible. It’s best to use a fluoride toothpaste and brush at least twice per day for best results. Additionally, flossing between your teeth at least once per day is recommended.

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Dentist Edmond Answers: What Are Dental Sealants?

Dentist Edmond: Dental Services

Have you ever heard the term “dental sealant” and wondered what in the world the dentist was talking about? Today, our dentist in Edmond aims to answer your questions on this subject!

What Are Dental Sealants?

Our dentist in Edmond uses dental sealants to protect the chewing surfaces of a patient’s back teeth from decay, or cavities. The sealants themselves are a small plastic coating that covers the surface, creating a barrier between the tooth surface and the mouth. The need for sealants comes from the fact that our teeth have small pits and grooves covering the chewing surface. As this surface is uneven, food and germs can make their home there and it can be out of reach for our toothbrush bristles. The sealant itself fills in these small spaces making it impossible for the food and germs to get stuck in the first place.

Who Needs Them And Why?

It is important for children to have sealants put on their permanent molars, this should be done as soon as the teeth come in before any kind of cavities in the teeth can form. Our dentist in Edmond recommends combining sealants, daily brushing, flossing, fluoride, and regular dental check-ups so that you come away with one of the best defenses for tooth decay.

Which Teeth Need Sealants?

At the age six, a child’s first set of molars come in, followed later at age 12 by the second set of molars. It’s best to get a child’s teeth sealed as soon as they come it. Making sure it’s done quickly will ensure that the teeth don’t have time to decay and form cavities.

How Long Will Sealants Last?

You’ll want to have your dentist check the sealants every time you come in for a checkup, but on average sealants will last between 5 to 10 years. If the sealants fall off, they can be easily reapplied by our dentist in Edmond!

Does your child need their teeth to be protected against cavities? If so, please consider making an appointment with our Edmond dentist for an examination, cleaning, and if necessary, dental sealants! You can reach the office of Philip Gray DDS at 405-330-5458.

Tooth Pain- Dentist Edmond

Dentist Edmond Provides A Few Reasons For Tooth Pain: Part 1

Dentist Edmond: Temporary Tooth Pain Symptoms & Solutions

It can be difficult to concentrate on daily life activities when you’re in pain, especially if it’s from tooth pain. You may find that you tend to favor one side while chewing due to having pain on the other. This pain isn’t actually the tooth itself, of course, but instead it is caused by nerves inside a tooth’s pulp chamber. Unfortunately, one person’s tooth pain may be for a completely different reason than the next. While there is no cookie cutter answer as to what may be causing it, today, our dentist in Edmond is going to go over 2 possibilities for your tooth pain.

1.) Sensitivity to hold or cold foods and beverages: This could be caused by debris sitting in a small decayed area of the tooth, a loose filling, or an exposed root surface. Until you can schedule an appointment with either our dentist in Edmond or someone in your local area, the best thing to do is to keep your teeth clean from plaque, but only use a soft toothbrush. Consider using toothpaste specifically formulated for sensitive teeth.

2.) Sharp pain when biting down: This could be the result of a cracked tooth, deep tooth decay, or loose fillings. It could also be that something is lodged between two teeth. If it is the latter problem, paying attention to your routine teeth cleanings will help. If it’s anything more serious, it’s best to see a dentist. Our dentist in Edmond is available if you need to schedule an appointment. Taking care of decay and fillings is important, because if left untreated the pain could worsen along with the damage.

While you wait to see the dentist, we know that you’ll be trying to find methods to relieve your pain. Our dentist in Edmond wants you to remain safe, therefore; as an important note it should be stated that you should never utilize aspirin between your tooth and gum to relieve pain, because the dissolving aspirin can actually harm your gum tissue. Stay safe and take care of your teeth as soon as you can!

To book an appointment with our dentist in Edmond, please call us at  405-330-5458 or click here.

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Dentist Edmond: Dental Health For Expectant Mothers

Dentist Edmond: Pregnancy & Oral Health

After the shock or excitement of learning that you’re expecting a lot of questions may come to mind. Pregnancy can be a fun time of learning new information about the overall health suggestions. Dental health concerns may come natural for an expecting mother not just for themselves, but also for their unborn child. Today, our dentist in Edmond is going to review a something you may find helpful if you’ve recently learned that you’re going to be welcoming a bundle of joy into the world!

Expecting Mothers May Have Inflammation Of The Gums

As you may already know, a pregnant woman’s hormones change quite a bit. These changes can sometimes cause inflammation of the gums, or Gingivitis. Our dentist in Edmond encourages you to be mindful of this common occurrence which is said to happen most often between the second and eighth month of pregnancy. If you notice red, puffy or tender gums that tend to bleed when you brush these are the possible signs of Gingivitis. With that being said, it’s very important to maintain good oral hygiene during pregnancy.

Brushing With Fluoride Toothpaste

To help prevent tooth decay and gum (periodontal) diseases it is still recommended by the ADA (and our dentist in Edmond) to brush with a fluoride toothpaste. Simply look for the ADA seal on the toothpaste you purchase to make sure it’s the best for removing plaque.

Using Floss And Mouthwash

Flossing is an important step that many people forget about. Gently slide the floss between your teeth. Don’t shove it down! Rinsing may be an option you supplement with, too. As with toothpaste, look for the ADA seal on your mouthwash. It’s recommended to opt for using an anti-gingivitis mouthwash to rinse with.

Our dentist in Edmond has a lot of experience, so if you have any questions about your oral health in relation to your pregnancy, please ask.

We’d love to help you maintain your dental health! If you’d like to book an appointment with our dentist in Edmond please call us at 405-330-5458 or click here.

The Effect Of Sugar On Your Oral Health

Edmond Dentist Talking About Oral Health

When we’re kids, our parents tell us that too much sugar will rot our teeth. While this may have helped us avoid a lot of stomach aches, it isn’t necessarily true. While sugar is the main cause of tooth decay, it isn’t necessary to completely cut out sugar from your diet. Taking good care of your teeth and seeing your dentist regularly can help you avoid cavities and tooth decay even with a diet high in sugar.

Sugar and Tooth Decay

Tooth decay happens when the sugars in the foods you eat mix with the bacteria in your mouth and creates an acid that eats away your tooth’s enamel. Once the enamel deteriorates it can be easy for the bacteria to cause further damage such as cavities and tooth loss. Tooth decay can be even more prevalent in those that have poor dental hygiene habits because they wont have the protection those that brush and floss regularly have.

Prevention

Sugar being the main cause of tooth decay can be a scary thought, especially since it is nearly impossible to cut sugar out of your diet completely. Sugar can be found in many healthy food products such as fruit, milk, and bread as well as the not so healthy items like cookies, soda, and candy. Yet, because the sugar needs time to mix with the bacteria the less time it is in your mouth, the less harm it can do.

Drinks that have a lot of sugar such as soda and juice can be the most harmful because the liquid sits in your mouth longer than a bite of cake. The same goes for candy. Crunchy candy that you will chew and swallow quickly will be better than a lollipop or hard candy that is too hard to bite and needs to sit in your mouth. It is also important to drink plenty of water after you consume sugary foods to help rinse the sugar out of your mouth

Brushing with fluoride toothpaste is also one of the best ways to fight tooth decay. The fluoride creates a layer over your teeth that is resistant to the acid that the sugar and bacteria creates. If you have a history of cavities, your dentist may also recommend adding more fluoride products to your dental routine or fluoride treatments.

Maintain Dental Visits

While your oral care routine and diet is your main defense against tooth decay, it is still vital to see your dentist regularly. They will help clear away decay causing bacteria that hides in your mouth and be able to see early signs of cavities so you can take steps to avoid further issues. If you live in the Edmond, OK area and have questions about how to prevent tooth decay, please contact us today!