dental-exam

Pumpkin Spice Lattes, dental exams, AND Fall are officially here! With the cooler weather, football games, and changing of leaves from green to auburn hues on the horizon, fall feels like a time of change. You may also have a to-do list for the fall season. The term “spring cleaning” is a real thing; however, we’re going to switch it up a bit, (because it’s a fall-thing too) and many of us are anxious to switch out our closets and do some long-awaited home improvements. With all this change, it’s the perfect time to come see us at Adams Dental Group for your routine dental exams and cleanings. Your teeth and gums will thank you!  

Related Article: What Happens During a Cleaning? 

Think of your dental exams as a deep cleaning – just like you do to your home. You inspect the area, decide what needs cleaned and what looks good, and get to work! Your dentist will do the same for your mouth. During a dental exam, we will:

  • Examine your teeth, gums, and mouth for any potential concerns
  • Possibly take x-rays, if needed
  • Polish your teeth with a dental-grade toothbrush and specialty toothpaste
  • Remove any plaque and tartar build-up
  • Floss
  • Apply a fluoride treatment, if needed
  • Oral Cancer Screening (When was your last dental appointment?)

Learn How Cleanings Prevent Further Issues

Overview of Dental Exams

While we may focus on the brushing and flossing part of dental exams, the truth is, there’s a lot more that goes into each and every cleaning and exam. Your dentist is often your first line of defense if something in your body is wrong, and your mouth will tell the tale. That’s why we always take a good look at the health of your teeth, gums, and mouth. If your dentist finds you’re experiencing something like gum disease, then early detection is the key to getting everything under control and fixed for good!

Routine dental exams give you the perfect opportunity to speak with us about any concerns you may have. Are you worried about a sore tooth, grinding your teeth, bad breath, dry mouth, etc. Whatever it may be, we’re here to help you have a healthy, great-looking smile. Curious about whitening treatments, corrective aligners, or porcelain veneers? Now is the time to inquire. 

Related Article: Gum Disease: How can I prevent it? How does it affect my body?

Stress and Anxiety

Recently, two key areas of questions have popped up a lot from our patients that relate to dental exams that we want to share. Dental anxiety keeping them from visiting the dentist on a regular basis and the additional stress from their everyday lives that they’re experiencing are really impacting our patients, so let’s dig in on both of these subjects to give you some additional resources.

Dental Anxiety:

Dental phobia is a real thing – so, if going to the dentist makes you uncomfortable or queasy, know that you are certainly not alone. If you’re fearful of visiting the dentist, let us know. We want you to feel comfortable and would love to share some Quick Tips to Ease Dental Anxiety.

Stress:

Did you know that stress affects oral health? We see stress shine through when our patients complain of grinding, gnashing, or clenching their teeth. This condition is called Bruxism. Not only does this mean you may clench your teeth while you’re awake, but it also means you grind your teeth at night. When you grind at night, it’s also known as Sleep Bruxism. According to The Mayo Clinic, if you do this, you’re also prone to other sleep disorders, such as sleep apnea or snoring. Although mild cases of bruxism may not require treatment, more severe cases of bruxism can cause headaches, jaw problems, damaged teeth, and more.

Below are some resources that we feel may be helpful:

6-Month Dental Exam Help Your Benefits Stay on Track

With the end of the year quickly approaching, it’s important to remember that everything comes full circle with your dental insurance benefits. Talk with your insurance provider early in the year to discover what your dental benefits entail. Are preventative visits free as they often are? If so, then go ahead and schedule your 6-month checkups early on to avoid forgetting. Or better yet – schedule your next visit before you leave your dental exam appointment!

Read More about Dental Benefits.

When you make the most out of your dental benefits, you know your money is going to a great cause – your health! Don’t let your deductible be of no use or let benefits slide past you, unused. Take care of your teeth and use your dental benefits to the maximum. The best way to do this is to see your dentist regularly so you know exactly how healthy you are and can plan for your future!

Making a Difference One Dental Exam at a Time

Regular dental exams and cleaning is wonderful preventative care. Although you may be brushing and flossing really well at home, tartar and plaque is impossible to remove with regular brushing and flossing, and can build-up over time. Dentists are able to use specific tools to remove that plaque and tartar, keeping our mouth cleaner and our chances of other complications much lower. 

We are excited to let you know that we are now offering our very own affordable dental membership plan that covers all your preventative care and gives you discounts on other procedures. It is a simple and budget-friendly dental plan offered directly from our practice — so you can access the care you want and deserve, for less. Learn more: Get Affordable Dental Care with our Affordable Membership Plan

Local dentist, Travis A. Roberts and his experienced, friendly team at Adams Dental Group offer affordable family dentistry and gentle dental care in the Kansas City, KS area. We have two locations that are conveniently located and offer appointment times Monday through Friday to meet your needs. At Adams Dental Group, we provide most dental services, from family and general dentistry to specialty procedures, including dental implants, dentures, endodontic or root canal treatment, teeth whitening, cosmetic dentistry and much more. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Call us at our West location (913) 296-8030 or our East location (913) 621-3113 to schedule an appointment.

 

 

September 14th, 2021

Posted In: Dental Health Tips

Tags: , , ,

cracked-tooth

How Can You Tell if Your Tooth is Cracked?

It can be hard for you to tell if a tooth is cracked. If you have pain, you may not be able to tell which tooth hurts or even whether the pain comes from the top or bottom of your mouth. Cracks may be invisible to the eye and m ay not even show on an x-ray. And sometimes you won’t have any pain or sensitivity at all; your dentist will discover it during your exam.

If you are having symptoms you can help your dentist find the cracked tooth by sharing some information:

  • things that cause you tooth pain; such as: heat, cold, or foods that are sweet, sour, or sticky
  • the area where you feel pain

Related Article: Do You Have Sensitive Teeth? Symptoms, Causes, and Treatments

Why Does a Tooth Crack?

A tooth may crack for many reasons, such as:

  • grinding or clenching your teeth
  • chewing on hard objects or food such as ice, nuts, hard candy or pencils
  • an accident that includes being hit hear or on the mouth
  • uneven chewing pressure, which can happen if a nearby tooth is lost/missing
  • wear and tear causing loss of tooth structure, like on the hard, outer layer called enamel
  • large fillings or other restorations causing loss of tooth structure
  • exposure of tooth enamel to extreme hot and cold temperatures

Related Article: Stress Affects Oral Health: Are You Clenching or Grinding While You Sleep?

Why Does Your Cracked Tooth Hurt?

Pulp is the soft tissue inside the center of your tooth and contains nerves and blood vessels. If the crack reaches the pulp, your tooth may be sensitive to hot and cold. Sometimes, a crack in the enamel of your tooth goes all the way down to the nerve pulp. This type of cracked tooth may hurt when you bite down or when you stop biting. The crack may be too small to see , but is large enough for the pulp inside your tooth to become irritated.

When your tooth is cracked the pulp sometimes becomes infected. If this happens, treatment to remove the pulp, also known as a root canal, may be needed to save your tooth.

Related Articles:

Toothache Causes: Why Do I have Tooth Pain and How Can I Get Relief?

The Number 1 Reason People Visit the Dentist: Tooth Pain! 

What symptoms will I be experiencing, if I need a root canal treatment?

Sometimes, a person may be disregarding the symptoms for quite a while. After all, it takes some time for this type of infection to take root. That’s why it’s important to schedule regular dental exam appointments.

In other cases, a person may show no symptoms.

These symptoms indicate a root canal may be needed:

  • Severe toothache pain from chewing or putting pressure on the area
  • Your tooth hurts longer than it should after exposure to hot or cold temperatures
  • Discoloration or darkening of the tooth
  • Drainage, tenderness and swelling surrounding the tooth, in the nearby bone, gum tissues or lymph nodes
  • A “rotten” taste in your mouth
  • Your tooth may start to hurt in the middle of the night; you wake up with severe tooth pain
  • Dental abscess
    • An abscess is a small, pimple-like bump on the gums near the area of tooth pain
    • Bleeding or swelling around the tooth may occur if you have an abscess
    • Sometimes it causes significant swelling of the jaw, cheek, or throat
    • If this swelling is noticed, treatment needs are urgent, and you need to contact Adams Dental Group for a dental emergency appointment

IMPORTANT: if you’re experiencing tooth pain, call to schedule an appointment with Dr. Roberts immediately!!

If you’d like to learn more check out our article: Everything You Want to Know about Root Canal Treatment

How is Your Cracked Tooth Treated?

Treatment depends on the size, location, and direction of the crack, as well as your symptoms. It is possible that your dentist will recommend no treatment at all, since tiny cracks are common and usually do not cause problems. You and your dentist can talk about the types of treatments for your tooth and decide on the treatment that is right for you.

Types of Treatment Include:

  • no treatment right away
  • repairing your tooth with a filling material
  • placing a crown on your tooth to protect it from even more damage
  • root canal if the nerves of the tooth are infected
  • removing your tooth if it is severely cracked and cannot be repaired

Related Articles:

When Tooth Decay Becomes Severe

When tooth decay becomes severe, a root canal is often the first treatment option. However, if the infection persists after a root canal, extraction would be the next stage. This will stop the spread of infection. Risk of infection is another reason for tooth extraction. If your immune system is compromised, risk of infection may lead to extraction of a tooth.

More about tooth extraction from WebMD HERE.

How Tooth Extraction Works

There are two types of tooth extractions – surgical and nonsurgical.

  1. Surgical tooth extraction is the most common surgical procedure in the USA.
  2. However, sometimes the tooth may be seen above the gum line and your dentist can remove it without surgery. This is a simple extraction.

However, often, gum tissue and bone may need to be removed to extract a tooth – this is surgical extraction. By taking an X-Ray and examining your tooth, your dentist or oral surgeon can determine whether simple or surgical extraction is needed. Before a surgical tooth extraction, you will be given a local or general anesthetic to numb the area. This will eliminate the pain while your dentist removes the tooth. Once the tooth is extracted, stitches are sometimes used to close the gum edges. Since surgical extractions are so common, there is nothing to worry about!

Signs that You Need to Schedule an Emergency Dental Appointment

A tooth that is cracked can be painful. It also can lead to disease of the tooth. If you think you have a cracked tooth, remember to look for these signs and call our office to schedule an emergency dental appointment:

  • pain when you bite down
  • pain when you stop biting down
  • pain that comes and goes
  • teeth that are sensitive or painful when eating or drinking
  • constant feeling that something is stuck between your teeth

Our goal is to fix any dental emergency as soon as possible and get you back on your feet and out of pain. Accidents can happen, and quick action and knowledge of dental emergencies can easily save a tooth! Make sure to give us a call at Adams Dental as soon as you experience the signs of a dental emergency.

Learn more from this Dental Emergency FAQ.

These are clear signs of dental emergencies, due to injury:

  • Cracked tooth
  • Bleeding gums
  • Bitten tongue or lip
  • Knocked out or loose tooth

While these signs are often correlated to a dental emergency, there are other signs and symptoms to also be aware of that aren’t as sudden or apparent. Symptoms such as prolonged pain, or a swollen jaw are major indicators that something isn’t right, even if they do seem more subtle.

  • Prolonged toothache
  • Jaw pain or swelling
  • Sore gums
  • Metal taste in the mouth
  • Canker sore that will not heal
  • Numb tooth
  • Constant headaches
  • Extreme tiredness

Regular Dental Checkups at Adams Dental Group are Important

Let’s review a couple of Healthy Smile Tips:

  • Brush your teeth twice a day
  • Floss once a day
  • Eat a balanced diet and limit snacks (especially sugary snacky)
  • Visit Dr. Roberts regularly

Remember to schedule your dental exam and cleaning, because it will help Dr. Roberts find and treat problems at an early stage. A cracked tooth can become a bigger problem if left untreated. If you think you may have a cracked tooth, please call to schedule an appointment at 913-296-8030.

Local dentist, Travis A. Roberts and his experienced, friendly team at Adams Dental Group offer affordable family dentistry and gentle dental care in the Kansas City, KS area. We have two locations that are conveniently located and offer appointment times Monday through Friday to meet your needs. At Adams Dental Group, we provide most dental services, from family and general dentistry to specialty procedures, including dental implants, dentures, endodontic or root canal treatment, teeth whitening, cosmetic dentistry and much more. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Call us at our West location (913) 296-8030 or our East location (913) 621-3113 to schedule an appointment.

August 30th, 2021

Posted In: Emergency Dental Care

Tags: , , ,

 

dental-anxiety

Dental phobia is a real thing – so, if going to the dentist makes you uncomfortable or queasy, know that you are certainly not alone. In fact, “as many as 40 million Americans avoid the dentist because of fear and anxiety,” according to Columbia University College of Dental Medicine. However, it’s also possible to overcome. Here are some of our favorite tips for overcoming dental anxiety so you can keep your oral health in tip top shape.

Learn more: Easing Dental Fear in Adults

1. Speak up! 

Sharing your feelings can make a world of a difference. Once your dentist knows how you’re feeling, your team can better assist you and be aware of your needs and concerns. Make sure to:

  • Tell the receptionist when you make your appointment. Let her know that you’re nervous about your dental visit and you can possibly share any previous bad experiences and ask for help on coping strategies. 
  • Don’t be scared to ask questions. Sometimes it’s the unknown that’s the scariest.
  • You can set up a signal with your dentist. Maybe it’s raising your hand when you need a break or feel uncomfortable. 
  • If you’ve ever dealt with pain from a local anesthetic, let your dentist know right away. Talk with your dentist beforehand about your pain experiences so your dentist can make you more comfortable. 

 

2. Distraction is good! 

If you can take your mind off a dental exam or procedure and distract yourself, it can be very helpful. Maybe bring headphones if the sound of a drill bothers you. You can listen to your favorite music or maybe an audiobook or podcast. You can also try squeezing a stress ball or try a fidget gadget to keep your hands occupied. Many dental offices also have TVs and magazines that can occupy your attention. 

 

3. Try Some Mindfulness Techniques 

Try and relax your mind – this is where relaxation begins. Deep breathing exercises are great for calming and clearing your mind. 

  • Count your breaths. While you’re waiting for your appointment to begin, or if you have a break, inhale and exhale slowly in the same number of counts. Do this five times.
  • You can do a body scan – relaxing each part of your body one section at a time. Start at the top, at your head, and work your way down your body. Relax your muscles and try to release any tension. 

A few more tips

  • Avoid caffeine and sugar before any appointments – these can make you jittery and more anxious. Instead, eat a high protein meal. 
  • Choose an appointment time that is the least stressful for you. 
  • Arrive on time for your appointment – try not to arrive too soon.

 

The Connection between Dental Anxiety and Depression

If you’re feeling blue, your teeth might be, too. According to Delta Dental, recent research suggests that people with anxiety or depression may experience a decline in oral health. Understand the connection and learn what to do if it’s happening to you.

The link between oral and mental health is hard to ignore. Data showed:

  • almost two-thirds of people with depression reported having a toothache in the last year
  • half of all people with depression rated their teeth condition as fair or poor
  • strong link between periodontal (gum) disease and mood conditions like stress, distress, anxiety, depression and loneliness

The most obvious explanation for the link comes from the behavioral effects of stress, depression and anxiety. People with these conditions sometimes lose focus on oral health habits, which can lead to significant dental issues. Depression, for example, can cause people to brush and floss at irregular intervals, skip dentist visits, have unhealthy diets and self-medicate with smoking.

Learn More about the Link Between Oral Health and Mental Health

Increased Cortisol Levels Can Lead to Oral Health Issues

Biologically, depression and anxiety cause several factors that impact oral health. The stress they create manifests itself in the body as a hormone called cortisol. As cortisol levels increase, the immune system gets weaker. This can leave you vulnerable to mouth conditions like gum inflammation (gingivitis) and gum disease (periodontitis). In addition, medications prescribed for depression and anxiety can cause dry mouth. This lack of saliva can mean that food debris, plaque and bacteria aren’t getting rinsed from teeth easily, which can make it easier for cavities to form.

Anxiety, in particular, tends to be associated with several oral health issues. If you have anxiety, you’re more susceptible to:

  • canker sores
  • dry mouth
  • teeth grinding (bruxism)

As with depression, these issues may be attributed to a lack of oral care or as side effects of anxiety medication.

Related Articles:

Adams Dental Group Can Ease Your Dental Anxiety

The mouth is a great window to the rest of your body, so when you visit us at Adams Dental, we can take a peek into your overall health during your regular dental cleanings and exams. This could save you money, time, and health down the road. When your dentist can catch a problem early, there’s a much better chance of figuring out what’s going on and treating it early, with a higher success rate. Oftentimes, dentists can detect warning signs before we experience any symptoms. Actually, oral health is an easy way to boost your immune system, learn more HERE.

Luckily, when depression or anxiety takes a toll on oral health, there are ways to fight back. The simplest step you can take to maintain your oral health is to brush twice a day, floss daily and schedule regular dental appointments with Dr. Roberts and his team at Adams Dental Group. Keeping up these basic oral health habits can go a long way to keeping your mouth in tip-top shape.

 

Local dentist, Travis A. Roberts and his experienced, friendly team at Adams Dental Group offer affordable family dentistry and gentle dental care in the Kansas City, KS area. We have two locations that are conveniently located and offer appointment times Monday through Friday to meet your needs. At Adams Dental Group, we provide most dental services, from family and general dentistry to specialty procedures, including dental implants, dentures, endodontic or root canal treatment, teeth whitening, cosmetic dentistry and much more. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Call us at our West location (913) 296-8030 or our East location (913) 621-3113 to schedule an appointment.

August 10th, 2021

Posted In: Services | Procedures

Tags: ,

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