Total Image Dental
So you’ve cracked your tooth—We know this can be stressful. But don’t worry, Total Image Dental is here to help.
Our main goal is to save your tooth, but the treatment plan and outcome all depend on the type, extent, and location of the damage. Before any more damage can be done, seek treatment as quickly as possible.
How to tell
Cracked teeth aren’t always obvious as having a crack down the middle; you could have different symptoms like:
• Inconsistent pain while chewing
• Pain when the tooth comes in contact with hot or cold
• Sharp edge you can feel with your tongue
What to do
• Make an appointment to see Dr. Saab as soon as possible.
• Rinse your mouth with warm water.
• Apply pressure with gauze if there is any bleeding. You can also use a damp tea bag (it promotes clotting).
• Apply a cold compress to your face next to the broken tooth. Cold helps relieve pain and swelling.
• Take an over-the-counter pain reliever.
How to prevent cracks
Cracks can happen for many reasons, but you can lesson your chances by:
• Not chewing on hard objects (like ice!)
• Not grinding and clenching your teeth (and wear a mouth guard at night if you do!)
• Wear facial protection when playing contact sports
If you do find yourself with a crack, call us at 713-468-7222 as soon as possible so we can determine the best plan of action.
Jul 13th, 2016
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Everyone is going green, but did you know that “going green” can also benefit your oral health? Your pH levels inside your body can greatly affect your overall health. Too much acid in your system can make various parts of your body inflamed. This may include your gum tissues. Gingivitis (early gum disease) and periodontitis (advanced gum disease) are conditions of infection and inflammation. Aiming to consume a balanced diet with the goal of achieving an acidic-alkaline balance (balanced pH level) has been shown to reduce symptoms of many health conditions. One of the fastest and easiest ways to saturate your body with these nutrients is by consuming green fruits and vegetables. Some great green additions to your diet are spinach and green smoothies:
Spinach & Dark Green Vegetables
Eating dark green veggies, like spinach, can have some great health benefits deeming it a “super food” among nutrition experts! The nutrients found in spinach are a powerful source of cancer-fighting properties, producing a substance that causes prostate cancer cells to self-destruct, and another compound that can prevent the formation of ovarian cancer cells. Spinach promotes cardiovascular health via properties that can lower blood pressure and prevent the oxidation of cholesterol. Evidence shows that juicing dark green vegetables like spinach can improve your dental health, preventing gum disease and cavities!
Green smoothie can keep your gums, jawbone, and teeth healthier and stronger! The best part about drinking green smoothies is the taste. If you can get over the color, you will find how delicious a green smoothie can be. Spinach, cucumber, kale, lettuce, and zucchini can be blended with fruit to create a low-calorie, nutrient dense meal replacement that boosts your oral health. A great addition to your green smoothie is yogurt. Yogurt has been shown to strengthen teeth and prevent bad breath, as well as add a creamy consistency to your nutrient-dense smoothie.
If you have questions regarding your dental health, give Total Image Dental a call at Total Image Dental, Houston office Phone Number 713-468-7222 today!
Crowns are one of the most common restorative procedures we perform in our office! Here are some other interesting facts about teeth and our favorite “crowns”:
Did you know a common myth surrounding one of our founding fathers, George Washington, was that he had wooden teeth? Contrary to popular belief, Washington actually had false teeth made of ivory, gold and even lead, but the stained wooden appearance of the contraptions he wore made them seem like they were made of wood.
In 1847 Queen Victoria’s husband, Prince Albert, had their first daughter’s milk tooth made into a brooch! It was a gold enamel brooch in the shape of a thistle with the baby tooth at the top of the “blooming” flower.
Prince Albert also loved hunting and there are several jewels that are set with the teeth of stags. It is possible that stag’s teeth jewels and infant teeth were examples of Prince Albert introducing Queen Victoria to German forms of commemorative jewels. Prince Albert was born in Bavaria in southeastern Germany, and deer teeth are part of traditional Bavarian dress to bring good luck in hunting. Prince Albert gave the tooth necklace to Queen Victoria in 1860. It contains 44 teeth from stags that he had hunted on the royal estate at Balmoral. Along with the necklace, in 1851 Prince Albert also had a holly brooch set with two stag’s teeth tied with Royal Stuart tartan ribbon. It was a souvenir of Balmoral and a birthday gift from his wife.
Even further back in history than tooth jewelry, is jewels in teeth! A skull found in Chiapas, Mexico had teeth adorned with jade and blue stones, evidence that fashion and dental restorations existed as far back as the 1500s!
Get the royal treatment here with us at Total Image Dental and have a crown to be proud of!
Call us today to discuss your restorative dental options!
Jun 15th, 2016
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Gum disease can be serious business if left untreated. The good news is, with regular maintenance and good oral hygiene, you can avoid and even reverse the early stages of gum disease. We’ve put together some tips for you that will help you prevent gum disease.
Maintaining a Clean Mouth
Brushing your gums, as well as your teeth after every meal is the best way to take care of your teeth. Remove those food particles without being too hard on your enamel. We can show you the best method at your next appointment.
Dental floss can reach those spaces in your mouth that a tooth brush just can’t get to. Get in between your teeth with floss before you brush, so that any food you pull out can be picked up by your tooth brush.
While you shouldn’t rely on mouthwash alone, certain mouthwash products are great for killing bacteria. Consult our office for suggestions as some products are better than others.
Practice Good Overall Health
Keeping a balanced diet keeps your whole body healthy. Staying away from eating too much sugar is a great place to start. Making sure you get all the nutrients you need helps your body fight bacteria, including those that can cause gum disease.
If you are a smoker, quit! Smoking is not just awful for your lungs, smoking leads to tooth decay, tooth loss and poor gum health. Smoking leads to the creation of pockets in your gums, where bacteria collect and form tartar. It also degrades the tissues that hold your teeth in place.
Talk to Your Doctor about your Medications
It may be worth talking with your doctor about the side effects of any medication you may be on. Some drugs lead to bacteria build up in the mouth, or affect the flow of saliva that keeps that bacteria from settling.
Hormones can also play a role in oral health. If you are experiencing hormonal changes, you may be experiencing tooth sensitivity, and promoting the development of gum disease.
Stress affects your body’s ability to fight infection. Evaluating the stress in your life and what you can do to manage it is a great idea to promote your general health.
Regular oral health visits are the best way to pin down gum disease. The professionals at our office are trained to notice the kinds of things you may not see in your mouth.
You may not have considered that your crooked teeth put you at risk for gum disease. Having straight teeth means eliminating certain pockets where gum disease can develop. Braces are a great way to do this.
Contact our office today to set up your next appointment!
Wisdom tooth removal has become somewhat of a rite of passage – puffy-cheeked post-extraction photos, a diet of Jell-O and mashed potatoes. But not everyone gets their wisdom teeth taken out. In fact, not everyone has wisdom teeth at all! Have you ever wondered why some people have four wisdom teeth while others have fewer or even none? We’ve got the facts behind how many wisdom teeth people have and why!
Why do we have wisdom teeth?
Third molars, or wisdom teeth, were once very useful to our ancestors. Because prehistoric man’s diet of hard-to-chew plants and uncooked meat required powerful chewing muscles, our ancestors’ jaws were large enough to fit 32 teeth, not just 28. Now that humans have evolved a better means of chewing and digesting our food, we no longer have large jaws, so we simply have no need or no room for wisdom teeth. Many scientists believe humans are currently evolving third molar hypodontia, or the lack of wisdom teeth, due to their inability to develop in the first place.
How many people have wisdom teeth?
About 20-25% of the human population is born with 1 to 3 wisdom teeth, and 35% is born without any wisdom teeth at all.
Why do some people have wisdom teeth and some don’t?
There are a few reasons why scientists believe that not everyone develops wisdom teeth:
- Genetics: Some evidence suggests that a genetic mutation occurred hundreds of thousands of years ago, causing some people to be born without wisdom teeth.
- Environment: Percentages of people who develop wisdom teeth varies from culture to culture. Certain ethnic groups are known for low percentages of wisdom teeth development, while others are known for high percentages. Environmental factors during dental development are also a possible explanation.
Will wisdom teeth become obsolete?
With the number of people lacking wisdom teeth steadily growing, it’s possible that we could someday completely evolve to not develop wisdom teeth at all. Scientists have experimented with chemically preventing the development of wisdom teeth. Researchers have found that children ages 2-6 that are given local anesthesia for dental work have a higher chance of not developing wisdom teeth later on. Maybe in the future, simple injections at a young age will keep all of us from having to go through wisdom tooth extraction!
Oral cancer screenings are performed regularly at dental exams, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be paying attention to your dental hygiene between appointments. Taking matters into your own hands is the best way to maintain your oral health. Not sure how to screen for oral cancer? We’ll show you!
What is oral pathology?
This branch of dentistry involves the evaluation and treatment of diseases of the mouth. The most dangerous, but not always the most obvious, of these diseases is oral cancer.
What should I look for?
Keep an eye out for these oral cancer symptoms during your self-screenings:
- Red or white patches in the mouth
- Lumps on the tongue or lining of the mouth
- Mouth sores that won’t heal
- Unexplained bleeding
- Chronic throat soreness
- Difficulty chewing or swallowing
- Mouth numbness
How do I perform an oral cancer self-exam?
- When performing your oral cancer self-screening, be sure to check all areas of the mouth, including the roof, floor, tongue, lips, cheeks and the back of your throat.
- Examine your face in the mirror for abnormal asymmetry and irregularities.
- Feel your neck and the back of your head with your fingers to look for any bumps or changes in texture.
- Examine your throat by placing your fingers around your thyroid cartilage (Adam’s apple) and swallowing.
How often should I perform a self-exam?
Self-exams should be performed at least once a month. Changes to your oral health can occur rapidly, so it’s important to stay on top of things. Treatment is most effective if we detect symptoms early.
Ask us about performing an oral cancer screening when you visit – we’re here to ease your mind and give you the tools you need to maintain your health!
May 9th, 2016
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We’re all familiar with cavities – the anxiety before going to the dentist, the satisfaction of leaving without having to return for fillings. As routine as cavity treatment seems, tooth decay, or dental caries, is more complex than we often realize. Keep reading to get the inside scoop on tooth decay and how you can prevent it!
What is tooth decay?
Dental caries, also known as tooth decay, is the bacterial destruction of the tooth’s enamel.
What causes tooth decay?
Even with an effective dental care routine, bacteria in the mouth cause plaque to form on the teeth. When the bacteria in plaque react with food in your mouth, it produces acid that wears away at the enamel.
Stages and treatments
There is a range of treatment methods for dental caries depending on the severity of the decay:
- Fillings and restorations are the most common cavity treatments. We use inlays and onlays to treat tooth decay because they’re similar to traditional fillings but are more stable and longer lasting.
- Crowns are necessary if the decay goes deep enough to make the tooth weak or unstable. These tooth-colored caps are secured to the tops of damaged teeth to strengthen them and restore them to normal function.
- Root canal therapy (RCT) is needed when the cavity goes deep enough to infect the pulp in the tooth. Sometimes the damage is severe enough that root canal therapy is not effective, and if retreatment is unsuccessful an apicoectomy is performed. During an apicoectomy, the infected pulp tissue is removed through the tooth’s root. Then the root tip is cut off and replaced with biocompatible material.
- If the tooth is beyond saving through one of these previously mentioned methods, extraction is the way to go. Dental implants offer a sturdy, long-lasting solution to extracted teeth to restore your smile.
Give us a call so you can achieve that bright, beautiful, healthy smile!
Apr 20th, 2016
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Gum disease and pulpal infections are both unpleasant on their own, but did you know that they are linked? Many people don’t realize that one condition often leads to another, and that makes oral care even more important! We have all sorts of information about the connection between gum disease and pulpitis, so read on!
What is periodontal disease?
Periodontal (gum) disease is the infection of the gum tissue, and is a more severe version of gingivitis. Plaque buildup hardens and forms tartar, or calculus, a substance that irritates the gums and can only be removed with the assistance of dental instruments. As gum disease progresses, tooth loss and jawbone deterioration is common.
What is pulpitis?
Pulpitis is the infection of the tooth’s pulp, which is made up of blood vessels, nerves and connective tissue. Pulpal infection is typically caused by cavities that penetrate the enamel. It can also be caused by trauma that cuts off blood flow to the pulp tissue.
How are periodontal disease and pulpitis related?
The apical foramen is the opening at the apex, or tip, of the tooth root. Nerves and blood vessels pass through this hole and connect the pulp inside the tooth to the gum tissue. Because the pulp and the gum are so closely linked, periodontal disease can progress into pulpitis and vice versa.
What are my treatment options?
Scaling and root planing, also known as root debridement therapy, is a traditional gum disease treatment. Root debridement uses ultrasonic dental instruments to remove the tartar that causes gum disease. Unlike standard dental cleanings, which only remove surface plaque, root debridement therapy targets the tartar below the gum line in the pockets that form between the teeth and gums.
Laser periodontal therapy is a more advanced gum disease treatment. It’s a minimally invasive procedure that targets only the diseased gum and promotes natural healing, agitating the gum tissue so it reattaches itself to the jawbone. It provides faster results with less downtime, bleeding, swelling, and discomfort.
Root canal therapy (RCT) is the best treatment for pulpitis. It removes the diseased pulp from the root canals, and then uses a crown to stabilize the tooth. Extraction is an option for diseased teeth that root canal therapy can’t save.
One thing leads to another: a single dental issue could compromise your overall oral health. That’s why we offer state-of-the-art treatment options to keep all aspects of your oral hygiene on track. Give us a call to find out more about our treatment methods!
Apr 6th, 2016
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What are dental implants? Dental implants are replacement tooth roots that provide a foundation for both fixed and removable replacement teeth. Like roots, dental implants are secured within the jawbone and not visible once surgically placed. Teeth replacement is not new to dental technology. Early civilizations practiced teeth replacements; archaeologists have discovered skulls where teeth have been replaced by cast iron and sea shells. Despite their primitive methods, some of these implants were fused with bone like modern dental implants! However, unlike the ancient cast iron or sea shell implants, modern implants are composed of titanium. Titanium is lightweight, strong, and biocompatible.
According to the American Academy of Implant Dentistry (AAID), dental implants have the highest success rate of any implanted surgical device — 98%. Dental implants are available in several designs that meet individual needs: single tooth replacement, multiple tooth replacement, implant supported prosthesis (removable), and an implant stabilized denture. Aside from meeting individual needs, there are a few other advantages to having dental implants:
- Improved appearance. Dental implants are designed to fuse with bone, and look and feel like your natural teeth.
- Improved comfort. Because dental implants become an extension of your natural mouth, implants remove the discomfort associated with removable dentures.
- Easier eating. Dental implants act as your natural teeth, allowing you to eat without the pain and discomfort that often accompany slipping of dentures.
- Improved self-esteem. Dental implants give your best natural smiling, helping build self-confidence!
- Improved oral health. Dental implants are the only proven way to prevent bone loss after the loss of natural teeth. The jawbone needs consistent chewing action to stimulate continual bone growth. Tooth/teeth replacement with dental implants offers a solution to prevent bone loss.
- With proper care, consistent brushing, flossing and routine dental visits, dental implants can last 40-years to life.
If you are interested in dental implants, or have any questions regarding the procedure, call the office today!
Mar 9th, 2016
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Nov 24th, 2015
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