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12462 Brookhurst St, Garden Grove, CA 92840

Saving Money on Children’s Dental Care

Just about every parent wants what’s best for their children, and that generally doesn’t change when it comes to teeth. Then again, everyone knows that dental care can get expensive when the patient hasn’t been very careful with their teeth. But sometimes kids just don’t know any better, so we’ve compiled a few tips to make sure your children’s teeth get the best care, while your wallet doesn’t take a beating.

Baby teeth matter, get them checked!

In order to avoid the need for potentially expensive dental replacements like dental bridges and implants in the future, it’s important to start early by building great habits when it comes to teeth. This begins in the dentists office at your child’s very first appointment. While many parents mistakenly believe an infant doesn’t need to see the dentist (because they don’t have teeth) this isn’t actually true. In order to make sure everything is as it should be, your baby should see the family dentist right around the time their first tooth comes in (6 months to a year). In the meantime, be sure to wash your baby’s gums with a warm, damp wash cloth to take care of any residual food.

Limit Bottles and Pacifiers 

Bottles and pacifiers should see limited use at night due to their ability to impact the future bite and tooth placement of your child. However, it’s doubly important to avoid letting your child go to bed with a bottle with anything that could hurt their teeth, particularly sugary drinks. Doing so would simply bathe your child’s tooth In sugar all night, and a cavity wouldn’t be too far away.

Brush with them

One of the most important tips you can learn when it comes to setting your child up for a lifetime of healthy teeth is that brushing with them will quickly help them develop healthy brushing habits. By brushing with your children, you take advantage of their natural urge to emulate mom or dad,  which goes a long way when it comes to helping them realize how important it is to brush after every meal and floss daily.

Why it matters….and why they aren’t just “baby teeth”

One of the most dangerous misconceptions when it comes to children’s teeth is that “they’re just baby teeth, they’re not even permanent.” This line of thinking is bad for two reasons. First, it undermines how important it is for your children to develop good brushing and flossing habits. Just like learning a language, the fundamentals are easier to instill when it’s done early.

Secondly, while baby teeth will eventually be replaced by adult teeth, their influence lives on. Because every baby tooth doesn’t fall out at the same time, adult teeth rely on them for help when it comes to spacing and alignment. Without the baby teeth, adult teeth could come in crooked and out of alignment.

Do you have questions about your child’s teeth? If your family lives in California and you’re looking for a great family dentist in the Cypress area, we can help! If not, and you’re just looking for some good information, feel free to continue browsing our blog.

Do I Need a Root Canal

If you haven’t been to see the dentist in quite e while, you might be wondering if there’s anything wrong with your teeth. While it’s never good to go more than 6 months without seeing your dentist, even if your teeth feel fine it’s possible for infection and inflammation to live in your teeth without you even realizing it. Then again, more often than not if there’s something wrong with your teeth, you’ll know about it and, unfortunately, it probably won’t feel too good.

But when do you need a root canal?

Root canal treatment is designed to eliminate infection and inflammation inside the delicate interior of the tooth, know. As the dental pulp. When a crack or cavity allows bacteria inside the tooth this way, it feeds on the tissues inside and continues to spread to sourrounding tissue and teeth. While some patients mistakenly believe a dental infection only affects a single tooth, if left untreated it can do serious damage elsewhere as well.

So, what do you need to look for?

Pain

Pain is generally one of the first symptoms to be aware of. If you ever experience dentalpain, it’s generally a good idea to get in touch with your dentist. The pain associated with the need for a root canal will generally be constant and intense. It will also be incredibly painful when you apply pressure to the affected tooth.

Sensitivity

Sensitivity is the next most common symptom. But we are not talking about minor sensitivity that is genetic or caused by receding gums. This sensitivity will be intense and will last far longer, even after the hot or cold stimulus has been removed.

Dental abscesses

a Dental abscess forms when infection in your tooth begins to fester and spread into your gums. This can sometimes form a white, pimple-like bump on your gums near the affected tooth. It can also contribute to bad breath and a nasty taste in your mouth. It will also come accompanied by swelling of the gums.

If you think you might need a root canal, don’t wait to get treatment. While you might think you’re saving money by touching it out, an infection in your teeth doesn’t stop at your teeth, no if you don’t get it treated promptly it will be much more damaging and much more expensive to treat in the long run.

Putting off Dental Work is More Expensive Than Just ‘Getting it Over With’

We’ve all been there before, you see a toothpaste commercial or read something in the news about teeth, and begin to feel the tingle in your mouth. Chances are, there’s nothing wrong with your teeth, but you begin to get that lingering feeling that you’re long overdue for a trip to the dentist’s office.  No matter what reason you’re avoiding the dentist’s office, take this one simple tip: STOP.   Read on to learn a few reasons why you shouldn’t wait to go to the dentist.

Save Money, Get it Over With:  When it comes to your teeth, the waiting game is almost always a losing proposition. There are very few reasons to delay serious dental treatment, like a root canal or filling.  On the rare occasion that you do delay treatment, it is important to appreciate the fact that follow-up treatment should not be delayed. Another situation where delaying treatment might be recommended is if you are expecting one tooth to receive work and it is adjacent to a space that will soon be affected by a dental bridge.

The Insurance Problem: Sometimes, patients put off getting important dental work because they don’t have dental insurance, and the cost of the procedures could be expensive. Our advice to these patients: see if your dentist is willing to work with you. Many times, dental offices are willing to be flexible and provide payment plans for treatment.

Dealing with Dental Anxiety: An entirely different reason for patients to avoid getting timely dental care is the very real factor of anxiety. Do you get anxious about going to the dentist’s office? For some patients, its the prospect of a needle being used for local anesthesia, for other patients it’s the drill, and for some it’s the prospect of going in for dental work at all that fires up the anxiety. For those patients, a wide variety of solutions are available through sedation dentistry. Typically, sedation dentistry is accomplished by using either laughing gas (nitrous oxide) or IV sedation.

While nitrous oxide isn’t generally used to “put you under” it is incredibly effective at rendering a patient relaxed and ambivalent towards their surgery. While you will still be capable of following directions and comprehending what’s going on, you simple won’t care about the drill or the needle. When combined with some headphones for music to drown out the sound of the drill, many patients never need anything more than laughing gas. Fortunately, in addition to working quickly, the gas also wears off relatively quickly – meaning you won’t feel hungover after your procedure.

IV sedation is a little more serious and is typically reserved for more in-depth surgeries. Because it actively uses anesthesia to render a patient unconscious, diligent attention must be paid to the patient’s vitals at all times. With IV sedation, you won’t even know a dental procedure has taken place until you’re back in the waiting room receiving after-care instructions before a friend or family member drives you home.

Are you someone in the Cypress, CA area that’s been putting off important dental work? Stop the trend today, give us a call! We’ll make the process easy.

When a Dental Bridge is Right For You

Whenever you think it might be time for some long-overdue dental work, it’s only natural to do a little research in order to learn which procedure is the most appropriate for your situation.

When it comes to replacing teeth, one of the most time-honored and reliable treatments remains the dental bridge.

But don’t let the fact that dental bridges are time-honored, make you think they’re antiquated or old-fashioned. As dental technology has advanced over the years, so to have the flexibility, longevity, and reliability of dental bridges. Today’s dental bridges can last for many years, while successfully replacing missing teeth virtually everywhere in your mouth.

The Good News: 

The good news is that virtually anyone missing either one to three teeth is a candidate for replacing them with a dental bridge. To support the bridge, your healthy surrounding teeth will serve as a structural foundation. This means that they need to be free of decay and gum disease. Once these two conditions are met, the teeth are crowned and ready for the bridge and pontic (replacement tooth) to be installed.

On the other hand, if you’re missing more than 3 teeth, something like a partial denture might be more appropriate.

If You’re Missing “More Than a Couple” Teeth

When you’re missing more than a few teeth, you might be a candidate for implant supported bridges. With implant supported bridges, the implant is installed directly into your jawbone, where the implant’s titanium gradually fuses with the bone. Because of this, while the teeth are being replaced, the underlying bone must still be healthy and strong. For most patients, this isn’t a problem. However, if you’ve experienced deep, untreated decay and infection for years – this option could be out of the picture.

However, even if you’ve experienced some bone degeneration, there is still a chance that an implant supported bridge is a possibility. For some patients, bone grafting procedures can provide the density necessary to create a strong implant foundation.

When a Dental Bridge Won’t Work

Bad periodontal support:  The very first requirement of a strong dental bridge is healthy natural teeth on either side. If the support for a dental bridge is poor, it could cause future issues. On top of this, if existing support for teeth is bad, the resulting bone degeneration over time (from having a prosthetic) could result in the bridge coming loose over time.

More than 3 missing teeth

It is often more affordable to replace multiple missing teeth with a partial denture. However, some patients prefer the more expensive option of multiple dental implants or multiple dental bridges.

Too Many Healthy teeth

Sometimes, having too many healthy teeth can be a problem. But only when you’re trying to install a bridge. Since a dental bridge uses adjacent teeth as supports, it’s always a shame to have to remove enamel and healthy structure from a perfectly good tooth in order to crown it for a dental bridge.  In these occasions, it’s generally preferable to use an implanted dental crown.

Recovering from Root Canal Treatment

More often than not, patients that are new to the root canal procedure generally don’t know what to expect when they sit in the dentist’s chair.

If you’re one of those patients who has yet to sit in the dentist’s chair, you might be happy to know about a couple of the most popular misconceptions when it comes to root canal treatment. First, there’s that pesky rumor that says that root canal treatment is painful.

This one might have been true in the middle ages, but due to the leaps and bounds that dental technology has made over the years, root canal treatment is no more uncomfortable than getting a dental filling. Modern dental drills and anesthesia make it, literally, waiting with your mouth open (because that’s all you really need to do).

With anesthesia available to numb your mouth, nitrous oxide to put you at ease, and advanced dental cleaning equipment, your dentist can easily make short work of any infection or bacteria that’s causing a tooth ache.

Next we come to the next misconception, that root canal treatment is bloody. For some reason, plenty of patients think that root canal treatment is incredibly gory. While there can sometimes be a little bit of blood (due to the fact that your dentist is cleaning out blood vessels and nerve tissue), there generally isn’t too much and, what blood there is, your dentist will quickly suck away with a specialized tool.

After a root canal, your tooth might feel just a little sensitive when compared to your other teeth. This can last for some time, but shouldn’t persist for longer than a few days. Taking care of your tooth immediately after root canal treatment is relatively simple, just follow these tips:

  • Avoid eating until after numbness goes away
  • Do not chew on or bite with the affected tooth until it’s fully sealed and restored by your dentist
  • Make sure you continue flossing and brushing to eliminate future infection
  • Immediately contact your dentist if you notice swelling inside (or outside of ) your mouth, returning symptoms, hives or itching, or if your bite feels like it’s uneven.

A tooth that’s had professional endodontic treatment is fully capable of “living” as long as any of your natural teeth. Once the tooth has been fully restored and sealed, all you need to do after your initial recovery period is to remain dedicated to good oral hygiene habits, including daily brushing, flossing, and regular cleanings and check-ups by your dentist.

The Major Differences Between Dental Bridges and Dental Implants

It’s not entirely surprising when a dental patient appears anxious to replace one or more teeth that have “gone missing”. Missing teeth is never fun. Your teeth are one of the first things people notice about you, as such, we hardly blame the patients who want to find the best and fastest solution available for tooth replacement. That’s where we tell them to pump the brakes a little bit.

When it comes to replacing any number of tooth, the most important step to take is to stop and breathe. Not only is it important to stop and think because there are more than one solutions available for tooth replacement, but the two main options take different lengths of time to prepare, install, and perfect. But, as is always the case, sometimes the best option available might take some time. Our word to the wise? Don’t rush.

Dental Bridges

Remembering that it’s important not to rush your decision, if you’re looking for a quick fix for a missing tooth and you’d rather avoid the need for surgery, dental bridges are the answer. We get it, dental implant surgery isn’t for everyone. Whether you’ve got a medical condition or you’re a bad candidate for dental implants (your dentist can explain), a dental bridge might be the most logical solution.

On the other hand, we have dental implants. A dental implant is the longest-lasting replacement alternative for teeth. On top of this, they also tend to produce the most natural looking results (however, keep in mind that dental bridges still offer an exceptional aesthetic). Even still, dental implants tend to be more expensive in the short-term but less-expensive in the long-term, as they will most likely never need to be replaced again – whereas a dental bridge can be expected to last around 10 years.

So, dental bridge or dental implant? Ultimately the choice is up to you. If you’re a younger patient and you’re only missing one tooth – there’s a good chance your dentist will recommend a dental implant. This isn’t because dental implants are more profitable! That, actually, couldn’t be further from the tooth. In fact, it’s likely your dentist will make this suggestion for a couple reason. First, it’s more cost-effective in the long term, since a dental implant will likely never have to be replaced. In addition, it preserves the surrounding teeth as well. Unlike a dental implant, a dental bridge requires the two adjacent teeth to be crowned in order to support the bridge (think of them as the bridge’s architectural supports). If these two teeth are already healthy, most dentist’s won’t want to damage them. However, if they have cavities, fillings, or could generally be expected to require a crown in the future – a bridge might be a perfectly suitable solution.

Do you have questions about dental bridges, dental implants, and the options available to you for replacing a tooth? At Cypress DDS, we’re the area’s experts when it comes to cosmetic dentistry.

Dental Bridges: the How and Why

It’s only natural that your teeth are important to you. It’s also natural to want to replace a tooth as quickly as possible in the event you’re missing one. One of the most popular solutions for replacing missing teeth is the dental bridge.

At Cypress DDS, we’re Cypress, CA’s dental bridge experts. For years, our cosmetic and restorative dentists have put their skills to the test in order to help our patients restore confidence in their smiles, while simultaneously helping to restore functionality to their teeth. Fortunately, dental bridges help us accomplish both.

What is a Dental Bridge?

It might not surprise you, but a dental bridge is actually a lot like a bridge you would use to traverse a gap in the landscape. Except, in this case, the landscape is your smile and the bridge is a dental appliance (not a series of girders and supports). However, the concept is still the same.

One one of your teeth is missing, a dental bridge is used to replace it. In doing so, your dentist uses the adjacent healthy teeth as supports. These teeth are given crowns as additional reinforcement and support. Just like a bridge over a body of water, this is done to help spread the pressure and weight across the entire structure – rather than place it all on the bridge itself.

In your mouth, once the supports for the bridge have been created with crowns, your dentist installs a pontic. The pontic is an artificial tooth which is installed between the crowns and matched to your existing teeth in order to fill-in the space. As dental technology and the materials available have become better and better, dental bridges have also become stronger and more life-like. In many cases, friends and family alike won’t be able to tell you’ve had a replacement tooth installed at all.

Why Replacing a Missing Tooth is About More than Just “Looking Good”

Many patients don’t realize that getting a dental bridge is about more than just improving the look of your smile. In fact, filling the gaps made by missing teeth is actually an important step your dentist will encourage you to take for the good of your long-term oral health.

Dental bridges are about more than just appearance because the gaps they’re filling can make a very real impact in the balance of your bite.  Because the missing tooth is no longer there to help support the teeth adjacent to it,  losing a tooth can gradually cause your remaining teeth to fall out of alignment. This not only impacts your ability to eat, but it will also impact your ability to speak. By installing a dental bridge and filling the gap between your teeth, you ensure that your entire smile maintains its proper shape.

Do you have questions about dental bridges? The dental team at Cypress DDS is here to help. If you’re a patient in the Cypress area, schedule a free consultation today. To learn more, come back to visit our blog often. 

Common Questions about Root Canals

Root canal therapy is a common dental procedure used to save a tooth that’s become infected. Put simply, when bacteria makes its way to the inside of your tooth, infection and inflammation can spread to the dental pulp and the root canal – which rests inside and underneath each of your teeth.

At Cypress DDS, we frequently help patients preserve their teeth with expert root canal treatment in Cypress, CA. Learn more about the procedure and the many questions that patients have about it below.

Unfortunately, root canal treatment (often simplified to: “Root canal”) has a reputation for being painful and uncomfortable. This leads us to the first most frequently asked questions about root canal treatment:

“Is Root Canal Treatment Painful?”

You’ll be happy to know the answer here is: no. The reputation root canals have for being painful comes from a combination of misconceptions. First, dental science has come a long way. Years ago, patients had to bear drilling and cleaning of the root canal with limited anesthesia – which had a tendency to be very painful. On top of this, the pain associated with the toothache from an infected root canal also makes patients assume the procedure is painful. In reality, root canal treatment with modern anesthesia is virtually painless and no more uncomfortable than a common filling. If you’re nervous about pain and discomfort and think you might need a root canal, realize this: root canal treatment is designed to alleviate pain, not cause it.

What symptoms are associated with the need for root canal therapy?

There are occasions when there are actually no symptoms present when a patient needs root canal treatment. However, more often than not, there are a few indicators and they are generally hard to ignore.

  • Sensitivity that persists after hot or cold stimuli have been removed.
  • Severe pain when you apply pressure to a tooth while eating
  • A tooth that’s become disccolored over time
  • Gums that are swollen, tender, or bleeding near a painful tooth
  • A pimple-like bump on your teeth

How to avoid needing a root canal

Apart from regular visits to your dentist, the best way to avoid the need for root canal treatment is to take good care of your teeth, that means regular brushing (twice to three times a day) and flossing, while also working to minimize bacteria in your mouth with mouth washes and other anti-bacterial rinses.

What are the causes of a root canal?

Generally, the causes of infection or inflammation that lead to the need for root canal treatment center around bacteria that reaches its way to the inside of your tooth. This can come from the following source:

  • A tooth that’s been injured or broken
  • Dental procedures performed on the same tooth
  • A deep, untreated cavity

Have more questions about root canals? For patients in Cypress, CA we’re here to help. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and wave goodbye to pain. 

A Brief Introduction to Your Baby’s Teeth by a Family Dentist in CYPRESS, CA

Whether you just had your first child or you’re making a lovely addition to an already very busy family, it’s never uncommon for questions to arise from parents, whether they’re new to being parents, or seasoned pros — hardened in the battlefield of bottles and late-night diaper duty.

More often than not, the most common questions parents ask about new babies pertain to the odd rash, stomach ache, fever, and a litany of other issues ranging from how long it’s normal for a baby to cry to how a baby should be sleeping at night.

Unfortunately, few of the questions asked about newborn health tend to be about a newborn’s teeth. We don’t particularly blame parents for this. After-all,  a newborn doesn’t have teeth. With that said, it’s easy to let oral health fly under the radar.

However, even though your baby doesn’t have teeth, it’s important to find your newborn family dentist nearby, especially if you can find a dentist that specializes in pediatric care. One of the best reasons? An oral health risk assessment

Your Baby’s First Dentist Appointment (by 6 months of age) 

According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, performing an oral health risk assessment is incredibly important for infants. Put simply: this visit allows your dentist to spot the potential for any problems that could arise in the future. It assesses your baby’s risk for conditions relating to the hard and soft tissues of the mouth, as well as the potential risk for dental caries, and make suggestions for your baby’s fluoride needs.

Why baby teeth are Important

Parents occasionally believe that their baby’s teeth aren’t incredibly important because they’re just (eventually) replaced with adult teeth. This is one of the first misconceptions a good family dentist will squash right away.  Your baby’s first teeth are important for the development of healthy adult teeth by helping to properly space permanent teeth, while also aiding the development of speech and the ability to chew.

How to Brush a Baby’s Teeth

Even if your baby is “all gums” it’s still important to gently brush, it’s still important to brush very gently with a small amount of fluoridated toothpaste. If teeth have not yet come-in, a warm and damp washcloth will do. If possible, this should be done twice a day. The overarching goal: clean out the bacteria. Gently doing whatever you can to clean the bacteria out of your baby’s mouth is the name of the game.

Helpful Tip for Better Teeth: Follow Meals with Water (and bottle feeding before bed)

Many parents don’t realize that simply following every infant’s meal with water is a sure-fire way to reduce the risk for gingivitis and decay. By preventing gingivitis and decay early on, your baby’s teeth get an oral-health head start that can impact his or her smile for years and years to come.

On top of this, it’s important to remember that bottle-feeding anything but water before bed means that the bacteria from that food will continue to live in your child’s mouth all night – which can contribute to decay  and gingivitis.