Posts for: September, 2017
No one looks forward to a root canal, but there are certain circumstances that make them necessary. Root canals are an excellent way to treat dental problems while keeping a natural tooth intact. Dr. Paul Hubley and Dr. James Cinamon, your dentists in Framingham, MA, want their patients to be aware of the signs that a root canal may be the best option for maintaining your dental health.
Why is a root canal needed?
There are several reasons why a root canal may be necessary, all stemming from damage to the soft tissues, or the pulp, on the inside of the teeth. A tooth that has a significant amount of decay or one that has had several prior procedures may need to be hollowed out and crowned to keep the root system in place. A tooth that has a deep crack may also need shoring up. A root canal from your Framingham dentist is essentially a larger-scale cavity filling; it removes infection and seals off the tooth from further damage.
Signs of pulp damage
One of the ways that dental tissue damage presents itself is through tooth sensitivity; hot or cold food and drinks can cause a tingling and sometimes painful sensation from the area of damage or decay. It may also be very painful to chew or brush in that area. Some people develop a abscess, a bump that resembles a pimple, on the gums nearby. It's important to remember that these symptoms can be indicative of other problems, but it's important to make an appointment with your Framingham dentist to determine the cause and the best course of treatment.
If you've been having an unexplained toothache and think you might need a root canal or other dental procedure, it's time to call Dr. Hubley and Dr. Cinamon in Framingham, MA. Helping you maintain good dental health is our main goal!
Want to know the exact wrong way to pry open a stubborn lid? Just ask Jimmy Fallon, host of NBC-TV’s popular “Tonight Show.” When the 40-year-old funnyman had trouble opening a tube of scar tissue repair gel with his hands, he decided to try using his teeth.
What happened next wasn’t funny: Attempting to remove the cap, Fallon chipped his front tooth, adding another medical problem to the serious finger injury he suffered a few weeks before (the same wound he was trying to take care of with the gel). If there’s a moral to this story, it might be this: Use the right tool for the job… and that tool isn’t your teeth!
Yet Fallon is hardly alone in his dilemma. According to the American Association of Endodontists, chipped teeth account for the majority of dental injuries. Fortunately, modern dentistry offers a number of great ways to restore damaged teeth.
If the chip is relatively small, it’s often possible to fix it with cosmetic bonding. In this procedure, tough, natural-looking resin is used to fill in the part of the tooth that has been lost. Built up layer by layer, the composite resin is cured with a special light until it’s hard, shiny… and difficult to tell from your natural teeth. Best of all, cosmetic bonding can often be done in one office visit, with little or no discomfort. It can last for up to ten years, so it’s great for kids who may be getting more permanent repairs later.
For larger chips or cracks, veneers or crowns may be suggested. Veneers are wafer-thin porcelain coverings that go over the entire front surface of one or more teeth. They can be used to repair minor to moderate defects, such as chips, discolorations, or spacing irregularities. They can also give you the “Hollywood white” smile you’ve seen on many celebrities.
Veneers are generally custom-made in a lab, and require more than one office visit. Because a small amount of tooth structure must be removed in order to put them in place, veneers are considered an irreversible treatment. But durable and long-lasting veneers are the restorations of choice for many people.
Crowns (also called caps) are used when even more of the tooth structure is missing. They can replace the entire visible part of the tooth, as long as the tooth’s roots remain viable. Crowns, like veneers, are custom-fabricated to match your teeth in size, shape and color; they are generally made in a dental lab and require more than one office visit. However, teeth restored with crowns function well, look natural, and can last for many years.
So what happened to Jimmy Fallon? We aren’t sure which restoration he received… but we do know that he was back on TV the same night, flashing a big smile.
If you would like more information about tooth restorations, please contact us or schedule a consultation. You can learn more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Porcelain Crowns & Veneers” and “Artistic Repair Of Front Teeth With Composite Resin.”