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Top 5 Benefits of Getting Inlays and Onlays for Your Teeth

Top 5 Benefits of Getting Inlays and Onlays

Do you want to make your teeth look healthy again? Click here for the top 5 benefits of getting inlays and onlays for your teeth.

Keyword(s): inlays and onlays

Oral health is very important. Your gums, teeth, and tongue are good indicators of other issues going on in your body. Therefore, it’s a good idea to take care of your mouth. Problems like gingivitis, periodontitis, and oral thrush are the direct results of poor oral hygiene.

If the problem has gotten out of hand and the teeth have started to decay, the dentist will look to advanced solutions. Fillings and crowns have always been popular options used to remedy tooth decay.

Nowadays, many dentists and patients are opting for porcelain inlays and onlays. Read on to learn more about this dental device that will save your smile.

The Problem with Fillings and Crowns

Fillings do exactly as their name suggests: fill the tooth. When a patient gets a cavity, plaque buildup makes your body produce excess acid which eats away at the tooth. As a result, a hole forms. Now leaving this hole alone will cause your tooth to rot and create additional problems. So, it must be filled using gold, porcelain, or resin.

When the cavity is large, a simple filling won’t do. By this point, the tooth is already halfway through decay. Dentists create a special cap, called a crown, to encase the tooth and protect it from further damage. Crowns are made from the same materials as fillings: gold, resin, silver, and porcelain.

The problem is that crowns and fillings go through excessive wear and tear. Oftentimes, they have to be replaced, refilled, or tended to. Porcelain inlays and onlays are much different. Here’s how:

Aesthetics

Porcelain inlays and onlays look exactly like a tooth. Porcelain shares the same off-white marble color as the tooth. Unlike fillings or crowns, they don’t have a gold or silver finish. No one will be able to tell that they are not your teeth.

Durability

Porcelain is durable. These devices last more than 15 years. They can also withstand heat and cold much better than fillings. Extreme temperature changes cause fillings to expand, damaging the tooth and possibly creating fractures.

Teeth Stay Intact

The filling and crown process involves lots of filing which will change the shape of your tooth forever. Inlays and onlays require less filing, so the dentist preserves more of your natural tooth.

Teeth Become Stronger

Porcelain devices can actually make your teeth stronger. They resist the pressure of chewing and biting which prevents further damage. Inlays preserve the interior of the tooth much like a filling. Onlays protect the exterior of the tooth.

Inlays and Onlays are Customizable

These porcelain dental devices are created in a lab. The dentist takes impressions of your teeth at the office to get your dimensions. Then, the impression is sent to a laboratory where porcelain teeth are created. The next time you visit the dentist, the inlays are cemented over your teeth.

Scheduling An Appointment

Getting any dental work done is a serious procedure. Only you and your dentist can decide what device is right for you. The first step to healthy teeth is scheduling an appointment. Contact us today to schedule your dental consultation.


Why Coming in for a Regular Teeth Cleaning is So Important

Coming in for a Regular Teeth Cleaning is Important

You might think coming by for cleanings doesn’t mean much, but you might be surprised. Here’s why getting a regular teeth cleaning is so important.

Keyword(s): teeth cleaning

Are you part of the minority that enjoys regular teeth cleaning? We didn’t think so. But, today, we’d like to change your opinion.

Regular cleanings mean healthier, stronger teeth that will last well into old age. Not only that, they can prevent major disease well into old age.

If whiter, brighter teeth are the byproducts of these cleanings, who can complain, right?

Believe it or not, the perks don’t stop there. Together, let’s vow to protect one of our most prominent features, our smiles.

Here are some added reasons why it’s worth your while.

1. Whiter Teeth

All our favorite stars in Hollywood always seem to have the whitest, brightest, most beautiful smiles.

And while we can achieve some measure of that beauty with our at-home toothpastes and whitening strips, a dental hygienist can remove stains with even greater precision.

2. Gum Disease Prevention

Many were shocked when doctors discovered the link between gum disease and cardiovascular disease.

One of the main theories is that gum disease allows bacteria to enter the bloodstream.

That bacteria can then attach to fatty deposits in our heart’s blood vessels. The strain this puts on your heart can lead right to cardiovascular disease.

Gum disease can also cause early tooth loss. You know what that means. Regular teeth cleanings can prevent the time, money, and pain future dental implants may incur.

But, more than that, gum disease prevention can impede unwarranted strain on our hearts.

3. Cavity Prevention

If you don’t realize you have a cavity, it can continue to worsen until the day arrives when you feel terrible pain chewing anything hot, cold, or sweet.

Regular teeth cleaning can fill that cavity when it’s no bigger than a pinprick. Waiting until it’s a full-blown cavity will cause you pain that could’ve completely been avoided.

4. Teeth Cleaning Done Right

In the end, we should all be brushing and flossing twice a day. Raise your hand if you’re as diligent as you should be.

We know it’s a tough routine to fall into. But, even if you’re the best brusher and flosser this side of the moon, we’ll still never clean every last nook and cranny from the comfort of our homes.

5. Oral Cancer

Oral cancer isn’t talked about as often as some of the other variations of this awful disease. Sadly, one American dies every hour from oral cancer.

As with all cancers, the earlier it’s spotted, the better. Regular teeth cleaning means regular cancer checks.

Visiting your dentist puts you on the right side of a plethora of ailments, spanning from a common cavity, to gum disease, to oral cancer.

Seems like time well spent, doesn’t it?

Ready for a Killer Smile?

Here at Bridgetown Dental, we’re ready to give you your brightest smile yet.

We specialize in general dentistry, including crowns and fillings, as well as cosmetic dentistry, including whitening and veneers.

You’ll be pleased to know we work with an ever-growing list of insurance companies. Take a look at our expansive list.

Our proud standing as number one in all of Portland is rooted in our patient happiness.

Feel free to book an appointment online or give us a call today at 503-286-5654.


Is Chewing Gum Bad For Your Teeth?

The sticky nature of gum combined with the repetitive action of chewing has caused many people to believe that bubble gum can be harmful to your teeth. What people don’t realize is this is just a myth and chewing gum can actually help improve your oral health.

Chewing Gum Helps Increase Saliva Production

Recent research suggests that individuals who chewed gum after eating noticed an increase in saliva production. Increased saliva production can help improve oral health by minimizing damage done to the teeth by acids and sugars that are found in the food that is eaten.

The Type of Chewing Gum Matters

While chewing gum can help improve your oral health, you have to choose a very specific type of gum. You can’t just pick any gum off the shelf and expect to see a reduction in tooth decay.

The type of chewing gum you need to use is sugar-free. Using a gum that contains sugar could actually cause more damage to your teeth. All sugar-free gums are labeled as such on the package.

In addition to sugar-free gum, you may want to look for gum that has some kind of agent in it. Some gums have active ingredients in them that can help reduce tooth decay, reduce plaque buildup, or even help restore your teeth.

Improve Oral Health by Chewing Gum

If you want to improve your oral health by chewing gum, take the following things into consideration.

  • Make sure to use the right gum (sugar-free)
  • Try to find gum that is uniquely designed to improve your oral health
  • Chew gum for approximately 20 minutes after meals
  • Promptly dispose of gum after chewing
  • Chew in a gentle manner, not in a way that puts too much force on the teeth
  • Brush and floss your teeth at least twice a day
  • Do not chew gum if you have cracked or broken teeth. See a dentist to have them fixed before chewing gum

 

Remember Chewing Gum Doesn’t Replace Regular Trips to the Dentist and Brushing/Flossing

Even though chewing gum may be able to help improve your oral health, it doesn’t replace the benefits you receive from regular trips to the dentist or actively brushing and flossing on a daily basis.

When it comes time to have a dental checkup, come visit the friendly staff at Bridgetown Dental in Portland, Oregon. Call us today to schedule an appointment. We look forward to seeing you!


Starchy Foods and Plaque Buildup

Starchy foods are one of the most popular types of food cravings. People just can’t get enough of their rice, pastas, and breads, but did you know that all that starchy food could be the cause of any excessive plaque buildup you might be experiencing?

How Does Starchy Foods Cause Plaque Buildup?

Starchy foods, such as cupcakes, pastas, cereals, and breads, have a very high sugar content. Even foods that aren’t thought of as sweet, such as rice or bread, have components that the body views as sugar.

When you consume these foods, left over food gets left on and around the teeth. That sugary food attracts bacteria. Too much bacteria attracted to the teeth can cause excessive plaque to build up.

Why is Excessive Plaque Buildup Bad?

Excessive plaque buildup is bad because it could severely damage your teeth. The plaque and the bacteria on the teeth could do everything from cause gum irritation to the softening of enamel and even cavities.

What can You Do to Help Prevent Plaque Buildup Caused by Starchy Foods?

Even though starchy foods can cause plaque buildup, just eating this type of food is not enough to cause the plaque to build up. It is a combination of excessive amounts of starchy foods and poor dental hygiene.

If you like to eat starchy foods, there are things you can do to prevent the plaque from building up.

Brush Teeth Immediately After Consuming Starchy Foods and After Meals

The best, and most important, thing you can do is to immediately brush and floss your teeth after consuming starchy foods. This will get rid of any leftover food on your teeth. If there is no leftover food, the bacteria won’t have anything to feed off of and grow on.

There may be some occasions when you can’t brush your teeth immediately after a meal or consuming starchy foods. When this happens, you can make sure you rinse your mouth out with water. This will get rid of some of the food that is left over then you can brush your teeth when you get home.

Eat a Healthy, Nutritious Diet

You don’t have to cut out starch completely, but you do need to make sure you are eating nutritious foods. It is important that you consume a diet that is rich in calcium, vitamins, and minerals. It will improve not only your oral health, but your overall health.

Visit the Dentist Regularly for Routine Cleanings

No matter how hard you try, you won’t be able to clean your teeth as thoroughly as a dentist. To prevent plaque buildup, it is important that you regularly visit your dentist for routine cleanings.

If you live in the Portland area, you can schedule an appointment with Bridgetown Dental. Our caring staff is willing to conduct a routine examination, perform a cleaning, and even provide you with tips on how to properly care for your teeth.

Cal us today to schedule an appointment.


Should You Be Flossing Daily?

If you have turned on the news or watched any of the daytime doctor talk shows, you may have heard the latest news about flossing. The latest news involves a recent report about dietary guidelines that was released by the Department of Agriculture and Health and Human Services.

The report from the Department of Agriculture and Health and Human Services lists numerous things that you should do on a daily basis to stay healthy, but one thing was missing – flossing. The absence of any mention of flossing has led many people to believe that flossing is no longer necessary.

Before you toss out your dental floss, we would like to explore why – even though this dietary guideline excludes flossing – you should still continue to floss on a daily basis.

Flossing Helps Keep Gingivitis Away

There are very few studies conducted on the effectiveness of daily flossing. Even though there are only a few studies, what those studies have shown is promising.

The few studies that have been performed show that daily flossing often helps prevent gingivitis. It is believes that this happens because flossing helps break up the plaque and bacteria that is present in between the teeth. When plaque and bacteria is broken up, your gums tend to stay healthier which leads to a lesser chance of gingivitis.

Proper Flossing Technique is Key to Improved Oral Health

Many people believe they are using proper flossing technique, when in reality they are not properly flossing. It is important to use the proper flossing technique because it helps to improve your oral health.

The dentists and dental hygienists at Bridgetown Dental, located in Portland, Oregon, will be willing to teach you the proper flossing technique. We will teach you how much floss to use, how much force you should use while flossing, and how to make sure that each and every tooth is cleaned properly.

Flossing techniques can be taught during a routine oral examination.

In addition to teaching you how to floss, we will gladly teach you proper brushing techniques, too. Many people are improperly brushing their teeth, which could result in bleeding gums, torn gums, or damage to their teeth. Our dental hygienists are willing to teach you how to properly brush your teeth in order to improve your oral health.

Call Bridgetown Dental today to schedule an appointment. We will be glad to see you!


Dental Sealants – Do You Need Them?

Tooth decay can be extremely destructive. It is responsible for cavities, and in extremely cases tooth loss. Dental sealants promise to provide people with an extra layer of protection against tooth decay, but the question that arises is – do you need them?

Do You Need Dental Sealants?

The simple answer is yes. Dental sealants are extremely beneficial to younger patients, as well as adult patients who may have teeth that don’t have fillings or previous dental sealants applied.

Now that you understand the importance of dental sealants, you may be wondering what exactly they are and the process involved with them. We will take a brief look at what dental sealants are and how dentists apply them to the teeth.

What are Dental Sealants?

Dental sealants are a clear plastic coating that is placed directly onto the surface area of the teeth. This clear plastic coating is uniquely designed to form a protective barrier between your teeth and tooth decay.

Back teeth, like the premolars and molars, could use an extra layer of protection against tooth decay. The extra layer of protection is needed because these teeth often have tiny grooves that can – and will – trap food and bacteria. When the food and bacteria becomes trapped it could lead to tooth decay that causes cavities and occasionally tooth loss.

When are Dental Sealants Applied to the Teeth?

Typically, dental sealants are applied to children’s teeth right after they have lost their first set. However, adults can get dental sealants too.

Many adults have teeth that do not have cavities or were not previously treated with dental sealants. These individuals will find dental sealants beneficial as it will help protect the health of the teeth.

What is the Process Used for Dental Sealants?

Applying dental sealant to the teeth is a relatively easy, pain free procedure. First, the dentist will clean your teeth using traditional toothpaste. The tooth, once it is cleaned, is completely dried and prepped for the application of the sealant.

The application of the sealant is a two-step process. The first step involves placing a safe acidic solution on the surface of the teeth. This solution will make the surface of the teeth porous, which help hold the sealant to the tooth. After the acidic solution is removed, the sealant is applied to the tooth. The sealant is placed on the tooth and left to harden. Once it has hardened, the tooth is sealed and you can go home.

Dental sealant is a cost-effective way to protect healthy teeth against tooth decay. If you live in the Portland, Oregon area and are interested in learning more about dental sealants, call Bridgetown Dental today to schedule an appointment. We will gladly discuss dental sealants with you and help you determine if this is a dental procedure that is right for you.


Do You Need Fluoride Treatments?

Are Adult Fluoride Treatments Necessary?

 It’s a natural, everyday occurrence, your body takes in fluoride and it loses it. Fluoride is absorbed through water intake and different foods you eat. The way you lose fluoride is through demineralization of your teeth when acids caused by plaque bacteria and sugars in your mouth attack tooth enamel. You can “put fluoride back” (as well as calcium and phosphate) into your tooth’s enamel layer by eating healthy foods and drinking fluoridated water. Another way to get more fluoride is through fluoride treatments at your dentist’s office. If you aren’t healthy foods and drinking water that contains fluoride you are going to lose it faster than it can be replaced putting you at risk for tooth decay..

 What does Fluoride Treatment Do?

 Fluoride helps prevent tooth decay by defending your teeth against acid attacks caused by plaque, bacteria and sugars in your mouth. Not only can fluoride prevent tooth decay, it can also reverse early tooth decay. For children under the age of 6, fluoride is part of the the development of permanent teeth, making it difficult for acids to demineralize the teeth.

But we now know that adults can also benefit from added fluoride. Fluoride disrupts acid production in the already erupted teeth of adults, as well as children.

In addition to fluoride in foods and water, fluoride can be directly applied to the teeth through fluoridated toothpastes and mouth rinses. Products containing fluoride in lower strengths over the counter at your local drugstore. Stronger concentrations require a doctor’s prescription or you can get them at your dentist’s office.

 Risk of Fluoride Loss?

 Some people have certain conditions that put them at increased risk of tooth decay, and so they will benefit from additional fluoride treatments. Here are some examples:

  • Dry mouth conditions caused by diseases or medications.The lack of saliva makes it harder for food particles to be washed away and acids to be neutralized, putting your teeth at risk of demineralization.
  • Patients who have deep pits and groovesin their teeth are prone to dental decay.
  • Patients who are frequent snackers, eat sugary foods, or have a family history of cavities are at an increased risk of tooth decay.
  • Gum recession and gum diseasecan expose more of your tooth and tooth roots to bacteria increasing the chance of tooth decay.
  • History of frequent cavities:If you have one cavity every year or every other year, you may benefit from additional fluoride.
  • Dental work present in the mouth, like crowns, bridges or braces: Some dental treatments put teeth at risk for decay at the point where the crown meets the underlying tooth structure or around the brackets of orthodontic appliances.
  • Patients who are frequent snackers, eat sugary foods, or have a family history of cavities are at an increased risk of tooth decay.

Bridgetown Dental will help you know if your teeth would benefit from additional fluoride. If they would, it’s easy to have this procedure done when you’re in for your regular appointment.

 

 


Portland Dentist- Have a Leaking Filling?

There is a common dental misconception that dental fillings are built to last forever. While dental fillings are strong and sturdy, they are not built to last and can eventually start to leak.

We will take a look at what it means to have a leaking filling, how you can tell if you may have one, and what can be done for leaking fillings.

What Happens When a Tooth Filling Starts to Leak?

A tooth filling is uniquely designed to close any crack or gap that appears in the tooth. The gap is closed using a variety of material from composite resin to porcelain. Closing a gap or crack in a tooth is necessary because it prevents bacteria from entering the gap and causing cavities to form.

While a filling is supposed to be sealed tightly against a tooth, sometimes that doesn’t happen. Sometimes the seal on the sides doesn’t fit as tightly as it should. When this happens it is known as a leak.

A leaking filling can be caused by any number of the following situations:

  • Improper placement of the original filling
  • Wear and tear that causes the sides to wear down over time
  • Shrinkage of the filling after it has been placed

How to Tell if You May Have a Leaking Filling

Most of the time, a leaking filling has no symptoms. When symptoms do occur, it is often too late and there may be a potential infection or severe cavity forming.

Some of the signs that you may have a leaking filling include:

  • Sensitivity to hot or cold that appears suddenly or several years after the filling has been placed
  • Feeling as if the filling is moving or loose
  • Appearance of a dark or grey color surrounding the filling

A dentist can often tell if a filling is leaking by taking an x-ray. The x-ray will often show an open margin between the filling and your natural tooth if a leaking filling is present.

What Treatment Options are Available for Leaking Fillings?

If you have a leaking filling, you may have several treatment options available to you. The first option available is the opportunity to replace the filling. This treatment option requires the dentist to complete remove the old filling and replace it with a new filling that has a tighter seal.

In some situations replacing the filling is not an option. If the filling has been left to leak for a while, your only option may be to undergo a root canal.

Bridgetown Dental located in Portland, Oregon can help you if you suspect you have a leaking filling. Our Portland dentist will be able to determine if you have a leaking filling and provide you with recommendations for how to treat this problem.

Call our office today to schedule an appointment with our dentist if you think you have a leaking filling.


North Portland Dentist Using Low Radiation X-Rays

Sometimes the only way to diagnosis a dental problem is with the help of x-rays. Unfortunately, in order to take an x-ray it requires our patients to be exposed to radiation.

Radiation exposure is a huge concern amongst our patients, as more and more research suggests that too much exposure could cause numerous health problems. Out of concern for their health, many patients are reluctant to have x-ray images taken, which means dental problems could go undiagnosed.

Many dentists, like those at Bridgetown Dental in Portland, Oregon, understand patients’ concerns regarding radiation exposure and have taken steps to address those concerns. The most common, and best, way to address those concerns is by making the switch from film-based x-rays to digital x-rays.

Why Digital X-Rays May Be Better for Patients Concerned about Radiation Exposure

There is no way, currently, to completely eliminate people’s exposure to radiation when they receive a dental x-ray. There are, however, ways to reduce the amount of radiation they are exposed to during the imaging process.

When digital imaging is used, the levels of radiation a patient is exposed to is dramatically reduced. In fact, recent research suggests that the levels of radiation are 80% less than film-based x-rays.

By offering patients an opportunity to have dental x-rays taken without fear of radiation exposure, dentists are able to correctly and quickly identify dental problems.

Digital X-Rays Help Keep Dental Office Staff Healthy

Low radiation digital x-rays don’t just help patients, but it helps the staff at the dental office, too. Dental office staff are no longer exposed to harmful chemicals and high levels of radiation when working with patients on a daily basis.

Dental hygienists working in an office with low radiation digital x-rays can quickly take patients’ x-rays without fear of being exposed to harmful levels of radiation. They also do not have to spend long hours working with chemicals to develop the x-ray images.

Choose a Dentist that Offers Low Radiation Digital X-Ray Imaging

If you are worried about your health or potential exposure to high levels of radiation, it is important to find a dentist that offers low radiation digital x-ray imagine. For those who live in the Portland, Oregon area you can visit Bridgetown Dental.

Bridgetown Dental has made the switch from film-based x-ray imaging to low radiation digital x-ray imaging. This switch was made in an effort to protect the health of our patients and staff.

Call our office today to schedule an appointment with our dentist. If you are concerned about radiation exposure, please let our office know and we will do everything we can to make sure you are comfortable with your experience at our dental office.


Should I Brush, Floss, or Rinse First?

It is often considered the dental world’s version of the ‘which can first the chicken or the egg’ debate. Some people believe it is best to floss, brush, then rinse with mouthwash, while others believe the proper order is brush, floss, then rinse. So, which is the right way to do it?

We will explore the answer to that question.

The Proper Sequence for Daily Oral Care

It may come as a surprise to many patients, but the order in which you perform your oral healthcare routine doesn’t matter. Almost all experts in the dental industry agree it isn’t what order you do things in; it is how well you do it.

This means you can brush, floss, and rinse in whatever order feel comfortable doing it in. The only way it will impact your oral health is if you are not brushing or flossing properly.

Tips to Help You Properly Brush Your Teeth

Proper brushing starting with choosing the right toothbrush. Take the following things into consideration when choosing a toothbrush:

  • Soft bristled toothbrush – medium and hard bristles may damage your teeth and gums
  • Comfort level – find a brush that feels comfortable not only in your mouth, but while you are holding it in your hand
  • Type of head on the toothbrush – some toothbrushes come with a flexible or extended toothbrush head. Choose one of these if you find you are having difficulty reaching the teeth in the back of your mouth

Other things to consider when brushing your teeth include:

  • Do not brush your teeth too hard or too rough, as this may cause you to tear or damage your gums
  • Clean your teeth the proper length of time – teeth should be brushed for approximately 2 to 5 minutes
  • Make sure to clean not only the surfaces of your teeth, but the sides and backs of the teeth too
  • Use a toothpaste that contains fluoride as this will help fight cavities and plaque buildup

Tips for Proper Flossing Technique

Follow these tips to make sure you are engaging in proper flossing technique.

  • Use enough dental floss. Use approximately 18 inches of dental floss every time you floss. Use clean dental floss for every section you floss in your mouth
  • Guide the dental floss around the curves of your teeth to make sure it gets all plaque and food particles
  • Don’t snap or tear at the gums
  • Hold the dental floss taunt but not too taunt that you damage your teeth

If you are worried you aren’t properly cleaning your teeth or wish to learn proper brushing or flossing techniques, Bridgetown Dental located in Portland, Oregon can help. Call us to schedule an appointment and our dentist or dental staff will gladly provide you with tips on how to properly brush and floss your teeth.


Could Dental Implants be Better Than Natural Teeth?

Dentists will often do everything in their power to save a patient’s natural teeth. This is done because natural teeth, depending upon their condition, are often considered stronger and healthier than dental implants.

While it is ideal to try to keep a patient’s natural teeth, it isn’t always possible. There are certain situations where a dental implant may be a better option than keeping your natural teeth.

We will explore some of the situations where a dental implant may be recommended in place of another dental procedure, such as a root canal or dental bridge, where you have the option to keep your natural teeth.

Excessive Tooth Decay

Some people are more susceptible to tooth decay than others. This is sometimes due to genetics, certain medical conditions or certain prescription medications. No matter how much they brush and floss, these individuals will still experience excessive tooth decay that could put their oral health, as well as their overall health in jeopardy.

One of the benefits of dental implants is they are not as susceptible to tooth decay. People who are experiencing excessive tooth decay to the point it is compromising their natural teeth may want to consider dental implants as it may dramatically slow the progression of tooth decay.

Tooth Loss Caused by Tooth Decay or Injury to a Tooth

People can lose their teeth for a number of reasons. Sometimes it is caused by tooth decay or bone/gum disease, other times it is caused by injury or damage to the tooth. Regardless of the reason for the tooth loss, dental implants could prove beneficial.

Dental implants can help people maintain the bone structure in and around their jaw. When teeth are lost, the bone will tend to wear away over time. This can cause a number of problems ranging from difficulty eating to a distorted appearance.

Even though tooth and bone loss will still occur, when a dental implant is placed in the mouth it will occur at a slower rate. This allows people to continue to enjoy the activities they enjoy without having to worry about potential tooth or bone loss.

The only way to determine if a dental implant is the best option for your unique situation is to have a evaluate your unique situation. Bridgetown Dental, located in Portland, Oregon, is dedicated to helping patients find the best dental treatment.

We are willing to help you explore your options when it comes to dental implants. Contact our office today to schedule an appointment to discuss dental implants with us. We will gladly assess your situation and make treatment recommendations that will help improve your overall health.


Proper Calcium Intake Leads To Healthier Teeth and Gums

Everyone knows that calcium directly impacts your bones. If you don’t get enough of this essential mineral, your bones become brittle over time and you put yourself at an increased risk of developing osteoporosis or breaking bones. What people don’t realize is that calcium is also linked to your oral health.

Wondering just how important calcium is to your oral health, here is a look at some of the ways calcium intake – or a lack of calcium intake – could impact the health of your teeth, gums, or jaw.

Severe Osteoporosis Could Impact the Jaw Bone

Osteoporosis weakens the bones in the body and that includes the ones in the jaw. When the jaw bone is weakened it could present problems for your teeth.

Problems with your teeth happen when the jaw bone is weakened because this bone is considered the anchor for all your teeth. If the anchor is weakened, you put the stability of your teeth at risk. Unstable teeth, over time, will become loose and eventually fall out.

If you wear dentures, the health of your jaw bone is especially important. Osteoporosis can dramatically change the shape and structure of the jaw. When this happens it can cause your dentures to not fit in the mouth as securely, which creates numerous problems.

Lack of Calcium can Lead to Periodontal Disease

Periodontal disease has been linked by various research studies to a lack of calcium intake. The studies showed that those who took on average 800 mg of calcium (the recommended daily amount) were less likely to develop periodontal disease and had healthier teeth.

Periodontal disease, which includes gingivitis, plaque development, and mouth ulcers, can dramatically impact not only your oral health, but your overall health and put you at risk for cardiovascular disease.

Regular Routine Checkups can Spot Problems Before They Happen

A dentist will not be able to tell you if you are consuming enough calcium, but he or she can help you spot dental problems caused by not consuming enough calcium. Dental problems can be detected during a regular routine exam scheduled with your dentist.

During the exam, your dentist will look at the health of your teeth and gums and determine if any problems are present. This is usually done by performing an oral examination of the teeth and gums, but it can also include x-rays.

Regular examinations should be scheduled every six months. This allows your dentist to easily detect and treat problems that may arise.

If you live in the Portland, Oregon area, let Bridgetown Dental help you detect dental problems before they become extremely bad. Call our offices today to schedule an appointment for a regular routine exam.


Affordable Dental Implant Options

Patients with multiple cracked, damaged, or missing teeth often choose to just live with the condition rather than undergo a full mouth rehabilitation. They choose this option not because it is the best for them, but because a full mouth rehabilitation is thought to be unaffordable, but that isn’t always true.

When done with all dental implants, a full mouth rehabilitation can cost several thousand dollars, but that isn’t the only option. Many people who are in need of a full mouth rehabilitation can choose a more affordable option known as a hybrid tooth replacement.

What is a Hybrid Tooth Replacement?

The term hybrid tooth replacement is used to describe a dental procedure that combines both dental implants with prosthetics, such as dentures or bridges. This procedure is commonly used to replace multiple missing or damaged teeth, which is why it may be an option for patients who are in need of a full mouth rehabilitation.

There are two options available for people interested in hybrid tooth replacement:

  • Partial denture or bridge placed over dental implants
  • Full set of dentures placed over dental implants

Partial dentures and bridges combined with dental implants are an ideal option for those who need to replace two or more missing or damaged teeth. A full set of dentures combined with dental implants is an option for those who need to replace an entire set of teeth, whether it be in the upper or lower part of the mouth.

What are the Benefits of a Hybrid Tooth Replacement?

The biggest benefit patients receive is the ability to have a strong sturdy tooth replacement option that fits their budget. Dental implants are considered to be extremely sturdy and reliable, but if you need to have your whole mouth rehabilitated it could end up costing tens of thousands of dollars. A hybrid tooth replacement procedure is more affordable and provides these types of benefits.

A hybrid tooth replacement procedure allows patients to have the durable, strength that comes with a dental implant, but it also allows them to choose the flexible and affordable option of a bridge or denture. This is great for individuals who are in immediate need of a full mouth rehabilitation, but who may be unable to afford paying thousands of dollars up front.

Let Us Help You Restore Your Smile

Bridgetown Dental, located in Portland, Oregon, is committed to helping patients restore their smile. We provide a number of treatment options including single dental implants, removable dentures, and hybrid tooth replacement.

If you are in need of a full mouth rehabilitation, call our office today to schedule a consultation with our dentist to discuss what options may be available to you. You may be surprised just how affordable restoring your smile can be!


Reward Yourself with a Trip to the Cosmetic Dentist After You Quit Smoking

Smoking is one of the most difficult things to give up, especially if you have been doing it for a while. If you have recently given up smoking, why not consider rewarding yourself with a trip to the cosmetic dentist.

Remove Years of Discoloration and Stains Caused by Smoking

After years of research, it has been proven that smoking can cause severe discoloration and stains to your teeth. Even if you only smoked for a short period of time, you probably experienced some type of yellowing or spotting of the teeth.

Yellowing and spotting of the teeth is caused by the tar and nicotine found in tobacco. Over time, as you smoke, the enamel of the teeth will absorb these chemicals and start to become stained and discolored.

While you might try using an at-home teeth whitening kit, chances are the stains and yellowing you experienced from smoking so long will still be there. A cosmetic dentist has access to a number of professional whitening tools and other dentistry services that can help you looking great by brightening and whitening your smile.

Recommendations for How to Whiten Stained or Yellowed Teeth

After scheduling a consultation with a cosmetic dentist, you will be able to discuss what teeth whitening options are available to you. The options available to you will range from a traditional cleaning and use of at-home teeth whitening kits to powerful professional teeth whitening services or even the need to consider veneers.

Some of the recommended treatment options a cosmetic dentist will provide include:

  • Powerful in-office cleaning that may remove surface stains and yellowing
  • At-home teeth whitening kits created by a cosmetic dentist
  • Professional in-office teeth whitening services
  • Veneers for severely stained or yellowed teeth
  • Dental implants or dentures for cases where teeth and gums have also been damaged by smoking

Receive an Oral Checkup for Any Potential Problems Caused by Smoking

Your first priority after smoking might be to have your teeth brightened and whitened, but it is a good idea to have a complete oral checkup performed. Prolonged exposure to tobacco can cause teeth to soften, gums to bleed, and even cause severe gum disease.

A regular oral checkup or routine exam performed by either a cosmetic dentist or your general dentist can help you receive prompt treatment for any dental problems that may be present. Prompt treatment of these dental problems will make you feel healthier and happier.

If you have recently stopped smoking and want to get your oral health back on track, let Bridgetown Dental in Portland, Oregon help you. We offer family and cosmetic dentistry services that will help you improve your oral health after you have stopped smoking.

Call us at 503-286-5654 to schedule an appointment with our dentist.


Amalgam Fillings and the Dangers They Present to Dental Patients

Ten, twenty years ago dentists used amalgam fillings to help patients with cavities. When these dental fillings were placed in the mouth they were believed to be safe, but in recent years it has been discovered that they might not be as safe as they were once believed to be.

We will take a look at amalgam fillings, why they are unsafe, and what options may be available to you if you have these types of fillings.

Why are Amalgam Fillings Unsafe?

The materials used to create an amalgam filling contain a mixture of metals, which includes mercury. This material is used in dental fillings because it is extremely easy to work with. Dentists are able to bend and shape it into small, complex areas of the tooth and create a solid, compact seal around the filling.

It is believed that over time, the amalgam dental filling will slowly start to release mercury which can be absorbs by the body and placed into the blood stream. The mercury is released as a result of the pressure placed on the dental fillings. Pressure is applied to the dental fillings when people eat or grind their teeth. Some research suggests these actions result in the release of mercury which is immediately absorbed by the body.

Some studies suggest a number of health problems are linked to the body’s absorption of mercury. Those health problems include:

  • Danger to the surrounding teeth
  • Neurological problems – headaches, vision problems, etc.
  • Cardiovascular problems – heart attacks, strokes
  • Reproductive health problems

What Should You Do if You Have an Amalgam Filling?

In some cases, you may want to consider having the amalgam filling replaced with mercury free fillings. Unfortunately, this is a fairly expensive process and may not be required.

A general dentist will be able to determine what should be done with your amalgam fillings. He or she will assess your current health, determine if any problems are happening as a result of these fillings, and make recommendations for what should or should not happen.

Some of the suggestions provided by a general dentist for those with amalgam fillings include the following:

  • Removal of current amalgam fillings and replacement with mercury free alternatives
  • Keeping the current fillings until they start to show signs of wear and tear
  • Replacing only problematic fillings or those placed several years ago in an effort to reduce mercury exposure

Bridgetown Dental, located in Portland, Oregon, can provide you with recommendations for what to do with your amalgam fillings. Call us at 503-2964 to schedule an appointment with our dentist to discuss your amalgam fillings and what options are available to you.


At-Home Teeth Whitening Kit vs. Teeth Whitening Service from a Cosmetic Dentist

Retail and grocery stores offer at-home whitening kits. While these teeth whitening kits promise to do the same thing that a cosmetic dentist can do, they are very different. In fact, the only thing they have in common is they try to whiten your teeth.

Understanding the differences between an at-home tooth whitening kit and a customized kit provided by a cosmetic dentist can help you determine which teeth whitening procedure to use.

Customized Teeth Whitening Trays

In order for these teeth whitening kits to work, a bleaching agent – usually a gel – needs to be applied to the teeth. Most at-home teeth whitening kits provide a tray for use at home, but that tray is not customized to fit your mouth. This one-size-fits-all tray may hold the gel nicely, but it may not help get the best results.

A customized tray that is designed to place the gel directly on your teeth will help you get the best results. This customized tray will make sure no tooth is left untouched by the bleaching gel. It will also make sure the gel is evenly applied to the teeth, which will prevent spotting or uneven whitening.

Safer Bleaching Agent Used in Professional Kits

Teeth are whitened using a bleaching agent. This bleaching agent will help remove stains and discoloration from your teeth. Unfortunately, the type of bleaching agent found in at-home kits can be extremely powerful, which can cause problems with your teeth.

Professional teeth whitening kits created by a cosmetic dentist are safer for your teeth. These kits contain a special whitening gel that does not harm the structural integrity of your teeth. A professional teeth whitening gel is best for people who need to whiten their teeth for prolong periods of time, as it won’t harm them.

Verify Your Teeth are Healthy Enough for Teeth Whitening

There are some dental problems, such as chipped/cracked teeth or cavities, which could make teeth whitening extremely painful. If you use an at-home whitening kit, you will not know if your teeth and gums are healthy enough for whitening.

Using a professional teeth whitening kit from a cosmetic dentist can help you avoid pain by making sure your teeth are healthy enough to undergo the teeth whitening procedure.

Typically, before administering the teeth whitening kit, the cosmetic dentist will conduct a brief oral examination. This will find any problems that could cause you pain during the teeth whitening process.

Bridgetown Dental in Portland, Oregon offers professional teeth whitening services. Call our office today to schedule an appointment with our cosmetic dentist to discuss teeth whitening options.


Be Prepared For Your Next Cosmetic Dentistry Procedure

What To Expect During a Cosmetic Dentistry Consultation

Before any cosmetic dentist will start work on your teeth, they will often require you to go through a consultation. This consultation appointment is for the benefit of both the dentist and the patient.

Dentists will be able to assess your overall health and determine what course of treatment is needed, while patients will be able to ask questions, get price quotes, and talk about what type of treatment they wise to receive.

Arriving prepared for your consultation with a cosmetic dentist is essential to helping you achieve the look you want. The following are some questions you should be prepared to ask when going through a cosmetic dentistry consultation.

What Type of Results can I Expect from This Type of Treatment?

Sometimes, a person’s expectations of what a cosmetic dentistry procedure can do are unrealistic. It is important to know what type of results you can expect from a specific type of procedure. This will prevent disappointment.

During a consultation, it is important to talk with your cosmetic dentist about what type of results you wish to see from a procedure. This discussion will help your dentist determine if the procedures you are requesting will produce the results you want/need. If the procedures you want will not produce those results, he or she will be able to recommend procedures that can get those results.

How Many Office Visits Will I Need to Go To?

No one likes to go to the dentist more than they have to, especially when undergoing potentially painful procedures. Unfortunately, most cosmetic dental procedures cannot be completed in a single office visit. This will mean you will have to return for several visits in order for the procedure to be completed.

Understanding the time commitment involved will help you determine how much you need to plan for this type of procedure.

Will This Procedure Impact Other Dental Procedures?

Occasionally, depending upon the type of cosmetic dental procedure you are having performed, you may be putting other dental procedures – such as fillings or crowns – in jeopardy. It is important to understand what impact your current cosmetic dental procedure will have on surrounding dental procedures.

Other Questions to Ask During Your Cosmetic Dental Consultation

Other questions you may want to ask during your cosmetic dental consultation include:

  • How much will this procedure cost?
  • Do you believe this is the best procedure for me?
  • What is the recovery time like? Will I be in pain?
  • Is sedation dentistry available for this procedure?
  • How long will this procedure last?
  • Will I need to come in for any follow ups?

If you are considering a cosmetic dental procedure, call Bridgetown Dental in Portland, Oregon to schedule a consultation. We will be happy to discuss cosmetic dental procedures that will help you achieve the bright, white smile you have always wanted.


Dental Emergency? When its Time To See a Dentist

Can This Wait? How to Determine if You Need an Emergency Dental Appointment

Many individuals are reluctant to call a dental problem an emergency and seek immediate care from a general dentist. Unfortunately, this decision could prove problematic.

Seeking immediate care for a dental problem can save you money and alleviate pain, but the question many people ask is ‘what is considered a dental emergency’. The following are some situations which should be considered a dental emergency.

Extreme Pain or an Intense Throbbing/Ache Around Any Tooth

No one wants to sit around in pain. If you are experiencing extreme pain or have a throbbing sensation in your mouth, it is important to seek immediate care from a general dentist. He or she can help relieve the pain by evaluating the situation and determining what is the cause of problem.

Treating the pain isn’t the only goal of a general dentist. Pain and throbbing are often signs that an infection is starting. Tooth infections are extremely dangerous and can turn fatal if not treated in a timely manner. A general dentist will be able to determine if an infection is present and prescribe antibiotics.

Broken or Cracked Tooth

Broken and cracked teeth are extremely painful, not to mention they are extremely susceptible to infection. Whether the crack or break was caused by tooth decay or injury, it is important to seek immediate dental care from a general dentist should this happen.

A general dentist will be able to assess the damage and provide temporary relief. In some cases, a temporary crown may be placed over the tooth. The temporary crown will protect the broken or cracked tooth until a more permanent solution, such as a dental implant or bridge, is available.

Other Dental Emergencies

Pain, throbbing, and broken/cracked teeth aren’t the only things considered dental emergencies. The following are some situations which are classified as dental emergencies:

  • Injury or intense bleed around the gums or teeth
  • Sudden swelling of the cheeks or mouth
  • Lost fillings or other dental restoration procedures (crowns, bridges, etc.)
  • Complete loss of a permanent tooth

Bridgetown Dental, located in Portland, Oregon, understands that dental emergencies happen. We provide emergency dental care to patients who experience any of the above situations.

If you should suspect you are experiencing a dental emergency, feel free to call our office at 503-286-5654. We will gladly advise you if it is a dental emergency and get you an appointment ASAP.


Fixed Dental Bridge Procedure – The Pros and Cons

Pros and Cons of a Fixed Dental Bridge by Bridgetown Dental

 

Have you visited a dentist and received a recommendation for a fixed dental bridge? Before you sign up and go through this lengthy and costly procedure, it is important to consider the pros and cons associated with fixed dental bridges.

While every individual’s case is different, there are some standard pros and cons that can be applied to all cases involving fixed dental bridges. The following is a look at some of those pros and cons.

Pro – Fully Functional and Reliable

One of the biggest advantages associated with fixed dental bridges is their ability to be both fully functional and reliable. Once the procedure is completed, patients will be able to resume their basic day-to-day habits, including eating and drinking the same foods.

Some dental procedures may limit what can be eaten for fear the dental procedure may be compromised. Fixed dental bridges are so secure that this is not a concern.

Con – Adjacent Teeth Must Have Enamel Removed

One thing to take into consideration is adjacent teeth must have their enamel removed for a fixed dental procedure. This means perfectly healthy teeth must be damaged in order to make way for the fixed dental bridge.

Some patients are uncomfortable with the idea of having to shave down or remove enamel from healthy teeth. It is important to discuss this aspect of fixed dental bridges with your dentist before undergoing this procedure.

Pro – More Cost Effective Than Other Similar Dental Procedures

Oftentimes, a patient is given a choice between a dental implant and a fixed dental bridge. While both are effective, they do not cost the same. Those that are worried about cost may want to consider a fixed dental bridge. It is often costs less than dental implants.

Con – Only Lasts 10 Years

Fixed dental bridges are sturdy, but they are not designed to last forever. Most patients will have to have their fixed dental bridge replaced in approximately 10 years. However, it depends upon the individual situation. Some patients have had their bridges last for 15 or 20 years, while others need them replaced in 8 years.

Pro – Less Time Involved with Entire Procedure

Not everyone is able to take time off of work or put personal responsibilities to the side. Fixed dental bridges are often the preferred method for patients that do not have a lot of time for multiple dentist appointments.

In addition to the reduced number of dentist appointments, fixed dental bridges have a fairly quick recovery time. This allows patients to get back to work quickly after the procedure is performed.

Going over the pros and cons of a fixed dental bridge will help you determine if this is the right dental treatment for you.

Whether you have received a recommendation from a previous dentist for a fixed dental bridge or you just want to explore your options, Bridgetown Dental can help. Schedule an appointment with our dentist and we will gladly help you explore the dental fixed bridge. We can provide second opinions or help you determine if you should get an implant or a bridge.

Call us at 503-286-5654 and schedule an appointment to discuss fixed dental bridges.


Looking For A Brighter Smile?

Are You Sure At-Home Teeth Whitening is Right for You?

Before you purchase one of those at-home teeth whitening kits that can be found in any local retail or drug store, you may want to stop and think twice about what you are actually purchasing.

While these teeth whitening kits are easily accessible and affordable, they may not do exactly what you want them to do. And in some cases, they can even cause extreme pain or aggravate existing dental problems.

Taking a few moments to answer a few questions will help you better understand if an at-home teeth whitening kit is right for you.

Do You Have Sensitive Gums or Teeth?

Some individuals with sensitive gums or teeth notice that it can be extremely painful to use at-home teeth whitening kits. This is because the gels, bleaches, and trays are a placed in a one-size-fits-all category. While this setup makes it easy for numerous individuals to enjoy teeth whitening at home, it makes it difficult for individuals with sensitive teeth to receive the treatment they want or need.

Individuals with sensitive teeth or gums may need to use a lower concentration of the whitener. The lower the concentration of the whitener, the easier it is on your teeth or gums. Unfortunately, you do not have the ability to customize these at-home teeth whitening kits, which means you are stuck using the whitener that is provided.

If you have sensitive teeth or gums, a professional teeth whitening treatment may be your best option, as the dentist can customize the type of whitener that is used. Professional teeth whitening will allow you to whiten your teeth without having to worry about experiencing excruciating pain.

How White Do You Want to Get Your Teeth?

At-home teeth whitening kits can, and will, whiten and brighten your smile, but they can only do so much. In an effort to avoid disappointment, it is important to understand just how white an at-home whitening kit can get your teeth.

Every at-home teeth whitening kit is created differently, but on average they are designed to get your teeth two to four shades whiter. Two to four shades whiter is enough to make a noticeable difference, but it may not be enough to get you the result you want.

If you have teeth that are extremely stained, the only way to get the white, bright smile you desire may be to go with a professional teeth whitening service at a dentist office. Professional teeth whitening services can get your teeth whiter because they can use a higher, more powerful bleaching solution. Depending upon the technique used, a professional teeth whitening service can get your teeth anywhere from six to eight shades whiter.

What Teeth Do You Want to Whiten?

Many individuals do not realize that at-home whitening kits are typically designed to only work on the outer surface of the front teeth. This means that the teeth in the back will often remain stained or yellowed, no matter how hard you try.

If you wish to achieve a whole smile whitening, then a professional teeth whitening treatment will need to be performed. Dentists have access to unique teeth whitening equipment that will help reach those back teeth.

In some cases, a dentist may even be willing to create customized teeth whitening trays for their patients. These customized trays may allow patients to whiten teeth in the back of the mouth.

Ask Bridgetown Dental for a Professional Assessment

Are you still unsure about whether you should go with an at-home teeth whitening kit or a professional teeth whitening service? Let Bridgetown Dental help you.

We can conduct a brief oral examination and provide recommendations for what will be the safest and most pain free way to whiten your teeth. These recommendations will range from a customized at-home teeth whitening kit to in-office bleach treatments. Our recommendations will be based on your overall oral health, the results you want, and how much you wish to spend.

Call us today at 503-286-5654 to schedule an appointment to discuss how we can help get your teeth whiter and brighter.


Holiday Treats Take A Toll on Your Teeth

Though you may not be scared of Halloween, its aftermath is what should get you worried. Studies have shown that visits to the dentist increase rapidly right after the Halloween spooky holiday. These visits arise from the increase in the number of cracked teeth, a condition that arise as a result of consumption of excessive candy. This holiday is proving to be lucrative for dentists.

There was a nearly 80 percent jump in emergency dentist visits on Halloween about normal October days in 2014. That number has been increasing consistently in the recent years. The data was collected from Sikka Software that is a cloud-based app system installed in over 13,000 dentist offices across the country. Halloween treats can be damaging with long-term cavity problems arising from the sugar.

There are many emergency cases where you may chip a tooth on hard candy with children being at a higher risk. The front teeth are at a higher risk of cracking in comparison to the other teeth. It is advisable as a parent to inspect thoroughly all Halloween treats before allowing your children to feast on them. Additionally, you should floss and brush your teeth after enjoying every treat.

Evidence from the Sikka Software installed in over 2,000 veterinary offices reveals that pets also are adversely affected by the spooky holiday. They also experience cracked teeth from the hard candy treats with some cases of internal blockages caused by swallowed candy wrappers also reported in pets. Reports from Sikka estimate that in 2015 $800 million may be spent on emergency dental visits and an additional $300 million for vet bills as an aftermath of the Halloween holiday.

Every year, Americans spend approximately $9 billion on candy with a majority of that amount spent in October. Cavities and tooth decay arise as a result of prolonged exposure to sugary substances. As a parent, you can reduce cases of cavities and decays by limiting the amount of sugars your kids consume. The sugary and sticky Halloween candy treats can play nasty tricks on your kids’ teeth. All oral health experts agree upon the fact that sugar is a major cause of tooth cavities and decay.

The natural bacteria in the mouth feed on the sugars in the candy and other foods in the mouth turning it into acids. These acids attack the enamel of your teeth causing decay. The sticky candy results in sugars being in contact with the teeth for a longer time. Children like sticky candies like taffy and caramels. This candy often will stick on the surface and in between the crevices of the teeth.

If the sugar is stuck on the teeth for long, the bacteria will have adequate time to act on the sugar producing acid. The more acid that is produced and the more time it has exposure on the teeth, the more chances it has to cause cavity development. Nonetheless, there are certain precautions that you can take to reduce the effects of the Halloween sugary treats. First, you should go for candy that is easily and quickly consumable to decrease the amount of time the sugar is in contact with the teeth.

Avoid those kinds of candies that are sticky for instance gummy fruit snacks and popcorn balls that expose your teeth to sugars for lengthy periods. Limit your rate of consumption of sour candies that contain acids. The acids contribute significantly to dental cavities and dental erosion. Make sure that your children consume small amounts of candy in one sitting followed by a glass of water. Also, they should brush their teeth after consuming the candies.

Make sure that your children have had a good meal before trick-or-treating to limit their rate of candy consumption. Though Halloween presents a great opportunity for you to think about your children’s teeth, oral health should be observed keenly always. Good oral habits like brushing at least twice a day and flossing daily are important.

Though you may practice good oral habits, it is also advisable to visit your dentist right after Halloween when a lot of candy and sugars are consumed. The dentist conducts the thorough inspection using top quality equipment making sure that all sugary substances are eliminated from the mouth. A visit to the dentist guarantees a healthy mouth, always keeping your teeth and those of your children healthy always.

If you need to schedule a visit for a teeth cleaning and check up please give our office a call today at 503-286-5654


Avoid These Foods To Keep Your Teeth Healthy

Top Ten Foods That Damage Your Teeth

Everyone knows the importance of eating a well balanced diet for optimal health, but many don’t realize that your teeth need special care, too. Some foods benefit your teeth by providing your immune system with important nutrients. Other foods break down the enamel of the teeth, encourage bacteria growth, and can even chip your teeth. Below are 10 foods that your Portland dentist does not want you to eat to protect your dental health.

#1: Citrus fruits

Citrus may have a lot of nutrients in it, but the acids are damaging to your teeth. Any food with a high acid content can create damage to the enamel on your teeth. This makes your teeth more likely to decay over time. If you plan to eat citrus foods or consume citrus-heavy drinks, you’ll need to brush your teeth thoroughly afterwards.

#2: Ice

While it may not be a specific food, ice is very damaging to teeth. Using it to cool down drinks is no problem, but chewing it can be. Ice is a hard enough substance that it can cause a chip or two. What’s more, you might not even notice it right away.

#3: Soda

Any type of soda is a no-no for dental health. The caffeine and sugars in it feed bacteria and can lead to a dangerous level in your mouth. If you have to drink it, be sure to use a straw, which will limit the amount of soda that hits the teeth.

#4: Coffee

Coffee is a problem for dental health as well. First, caffeinated coffee (as well as teas) will dry out your mouth. When this happens, it causes bacteria to flourish. It can also stain your teeth. What’s more, many people drink coffee with a significant amount of sugar – also bacteria-fuel.

#5: Pasta sauce

Any type of heavy, dark sauce like this can create a problem for tooth enamel. The enamel can absorb this coloring, staining your teeth. The tomatoes also contain a significant amount of acid, which wears down enamel itself. You don’t have to give it up, but make sure to drink plenty of water or brush after eating this dish.

#6: Bottled water

You may be wondering how bottled water could be bad for your teeth. What dentists want you to know, though, is that during the water purification process that this product goes through, the water becomes more acidic than it normally is. And, again, acid creates bacteria that produce cavities.

#7: All types of hard candy

It may seem like a simple treat, but hard candy has a lot of problems when it comes to your dental health. First, it is nothing but sugar and coloring that will spread bacteria and stain teeth. The hard substance is also risky because it can chip teeth. And, chewy candies like caramels and taffy are just as bad.

#8: Popcorn

You love to enjoy popcorn during movies, but you may not realize just how bad it can be for your teeth. Kernels can easily get stuck in your teeth and gums, creating a place for bacteria to grow. Additionally, it’s easy to accidently get an un-popped kernel, which can chip a tooth.

#9: White bread and other white carbs

Refined carbs, like those found in pasta, white bread, potatoes and white rice are known for breaking down quickly in the body. This starts in the mouth. These refined carbs create simple sugars, which lead to bacterial buildup.

#10: Sports drinks

You think they are good for refueling your body, but sports drinks tend to have a significant amount of sugar in them, as well as acids. They can easily create erosion of your enamel and damage from cavities.

To combat any of these foods, brush regularly and be sure to schedule an appointment with your Portland dentist on a regular basis. Doing so can protect your dental health.


Dental Health: How Much Do Soft Drinks Effect Your Teeth?

I’m sure you have heard of a few common myths about the health of your teeth when you have a soft drink. Some people say as long as you brush your teeth regularly you are able to consume high amounts of your favorite sodas. While this may sound plausible it is also false information.

Soft drinks have citric acids in them that cause erosion to the white, glossy layer of your tooth, called enamel. This also pertains to diet soft drinks. Some research suggests that they are just as corrosive to your tooths health as drinking battery acid and can occur within the first three minutes of consumption. When you consume high amounts of these acidic drinks it can cause some irreversible damage to your teeth. As said by Dr. Taggart-Burns, “Without the protection of enamel, teeth are more susceptible to developing cavities, as well as becoming sensitive, cracked, and discolored.”

Cavities can start off as a brighter white colored spot on your teeth. You might have already started noticing some sensitivity to go along with the discoloration. If you let them go and do not think anything of them, the cavity will then start to crack, decay, and cause even more oral discomfort than before. How is this damage caused? This is caused by a combination of mainly three factors, one of which is the sugar, then comes the phosphoric acid that is present in some sodas, and finally the staining effect that they can have on your teeth.

The sugar problem is produced by acid creating bacteria on the surface of your teeth. This feeds on sugar and uses it to create acid, which destroys your once healthy enamel. The sugars in soda are easily used by our teeth as opposed to the sugars in products with whole grains for example.(which does not break down in your mouth).

Phosphoric acid is worth avoiding if you can. It is the same substance that dentists use to clean or brighten enamel. This is also how you know it can be effective in the removal of it as well.. Of course, it’s not in the same amounts as in a dental application, but it can be worth avoiding all the same.

Now come the cavities and staining of your teeth. They normally come along with pain or discomfort. Sodas can add multiple layers of sugar to your teeth that create plaque. Plaque is the yellow layer over your teeth when they are not brushed or cared for properly. This offers food for the armies of bacteria that build up in your mouth. Over time this layer can create darker, and thicker, yellow effects on your teeth that are unsightly and will need to be treated as quickly as possible by a dentist.

So, how can prevent this? The most obvious answer is to reduce, or stop, ingesting sodas. Substitute them with fresh fruit juices, milk, or water. Water is the best choice for overall health of your mouth. Citrus type juices will need to be ingested in moderation, or small amounts, if possible and in one sitting. This is true as the naturally high acidic values of these juices will cause harm to your teeth. This does not mean to consume an entire case of soda at one time, but that it is best to not drink them throughout the day. Energy drinks should also be avoided as much as possible, due to the fact that they contain unreasonably high amounts of sugars, more than soft drinks usually.

When you have your next dentist visit, be sure to talk to them about alternatives. Some may recommend chewing some sugar-free gum. Although this may also cause some slight damage, it is not as high risk as soft drinks and energy drinks. Be sure to brush your teeth twice a day for at least two minutes at a time. Flossing, using mouthwash, and being aware of what you ingest may also help keep your oral health in good standing.


Dental Implants – Superior Alternative to Dentures

For replacing teeth lost to decay, periodontitis or trauma, titanium-based dental implants provide a superior alternative to dentures or bridge appliances. Permanently fused with the jawbone and anchored firmly with abutments that hold the porcelain crown in place, dental implants not only look like real teeth but also help retain facial structure by preventing gums from shrinking and facial tissues from collapsing inward once teeth support is removed.

Establishing dental implants is a minimally invasive procedure involving the insertion of a titanium screw into the jawbone for attachment of an abutment and crown. Dental implants can replace one missing tooth or several missing teeth without the patient experiencing a lengthy recovery time or unnecessary pain. In fact, dental implants are starting to replace partial dentures because of the many advantages they have over dentures, such as the ability to function like real teeth, facilitation of speaking and chewing and improving oral hygiene.

Replace Missing Teeth ASAP with Dental Implants

Failing to replace missing teeth may cause a 20 percent decrease in the width of the alveolar bone, which surrounds and supports all teeth. In fact, a full set of teeth is not only necessary for chewing food properly but also for keeping the face contoured and healthy looking. When molars or premolars are lost and not replaced, gums begin to shrink, the jawbone loses density and the face develops hollows where teeth no longer exist. Moreover, one lost tooth is often conducive to other teeth becoming loose as the gums and bone deteriorate around the gap. Filling in gaps with permanent dental implants counteracts atrophy and prevents the inevitable bone loss and gum recession.

What Happens During Dental Implant Treatment?

Before starting a dental implant procedure, a dentist will evaluate the patient’s oral health to establish the existence of adequate jaw bone density to support the screw, abutment and crown comprising a dental implant. The procedure begins when the patient’s jaw is anesthetized and the dentist exposes a small area of the jawbone where insertion of the titanium screw will take place. Because titanium and other materials found in implants are biological compatible with the body, the risk of the body developing an antibody/antigen response to the implant is minimal to none

Why Osseointegration is Necessary

After a Bridgetown Dental dentist inserts the screw, he will recheck the area in several months to see if osseointegration has occurred. Osseointegration, or fusion of the screw with the jawbone, is necessary to provide a secure foundation for the abutment and crown. This allows the implant to eventually function like a real tooth and also eliminates the worry associated with loose or ill-fitting dentures that need replaced every few years due to gum shrinkage. Unlike dentures, implants also contribute to maintenance of the density and volume of the jawbone because it stimulates bone health in the same way that real teeth maintains good bone integrity.

Following osseointegration, your dentist can then affix the abutment and crown onto the implant in one office visit. You will also receive instructions on caring for the implant so that it functions properly for up to 15 or 20 years.


Portland Cosmetic Dentistry – Healthy Smiles from Bridgetown Dental

Smiles flashing straight, white teeth not only indicate a healthy, clean mouth but also improve a person’s overall appearance and self-esteem. To help patients achieve both, Bridgetown Dental provides professional cosmetic dentistry services such as whitening, crowns, bonding, bridge replacement and porcelain veneer placement to transform stained, chipped or broken teeth into translucent, perfectly shaped teeth.
In addition to the aesthetic benefits of cosmetic surgery, patients undergoing cosmetic dentistry procedures contribute positively to their oral health by eliminating poor oral health conditions that promote growth of destructive oral bacteria. When chipped, broken or otherwise damaged teeth are neglected, they naturally attract and retain bacteria responsible for tooth decay and gum disease.

White Teeth–Spectacular Smiles!

Professional dental whitening gel penetrates enamel structures called porosities to reach stains existing in tooth dentin. Active enzymes in the gel effectively break down stains to reveal the natural color of the tooth while removing stains. At-home whitening kits are available at Bridgetown Dental that include detailed instructions and flexible plastic trays that fit comfortable over your upper and lower teeth.

Porcelain Veneers

Restoring stained, cracked or broken teeth by covering them with porcelain veneers is another cosmetic dentistry method available at Bridgetown Dental. Porcelain veneers are durable, extremely thin layers of a flexible, composite material that can be placed directly over a tooth to conceal unattractive teeth. Patients can have one tooth or multiple teeth covered with veneers, depending on the condition of their teeth. Veneers are also used to fill in gaps between teeth or even lengthen and strengthen eroded teeth that have become too short due to simple wear and tear.

Bonding

Teeth compromised by cracks, chips or cavities may be repaired using a direct composite bonding method using composite resins resembling tooth enamel that can be placed directly on the tooth. Bonding also closes unattractive gaps between the teeth and reshapes teeth with asymmetrical edges.
A direct composite bonding treatment begins by the dentist applying resin putty to the tooth needing repaired and sculpting the putty to cover all damage affecting the tooth. Once the putty is affixed properly, your dentist shines a strong curing light onto the putty that hardens the composite material. More putty may be added and additional applications of light curing may be needed until the tooth appears natural-looking and fully restored.

Dental Crowns

Crowns are porcelain dental restoration appliances that encircle and cap a tooth damaged by cracks, chips or large cavities. Because leaving dental enamel in poor condition allows harmful bacteria to enter the tooth, Bridgetown dentists recommend crowns to repair cracked, chipped teeth. Made from porcelain, gold or porcelain fused to metal compound, dental crowns not only improve the appearance of unattractive teeth but also promote the integrity of a tooth by preventing bacteria from slipping into openings in the enamel.

Dental Bridges

Missing teeth leave gaps that are not only unattractive but contribute to tooth decay and gingivitis. Composed of synthetic teeth fused between crowns made of strong porcelain material, bridges resemble actual tooth enamel and function like real teeth. The most popular type of bridges are fixed bridges, or bridges that are attached to the teeth adjacent to the gap that needs filled. Alternately, patients may opt for a removable bridge if they have existing dental problems and cannot wear a fixed bridge.

If you are in need of our cosmetic dental services please give us a call today to schedule an appointment at 503-286-5654