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Posts for: February, 2016

By Dentistry at Camp Creek
February 19, 2016
Category: Oral Health

Cavities can happen even before a baby has his first piece of candy. This was the difficult lesson actor David Ramsey of the TV shows Arrow and Dexter learned when his son DJ’s teeth were first emerging.

“His first teeth came in weak,” Ramsey recalled in a recent interview. “They had brown spots on them and they were brittle.” Those brown spots, he said, quickly turned into cavi­ties. How did this happen?

Ramsey said DJ’s dentist suspected it had to do with the child’s feedings — not what he was being fed but how. DJ was often nursed to sleep, “so there were pools of breast milk that he could go to sleep with in his mouth,” Ramsey explained.

While breastfeeding offers an infant many health benefits, problems can occur when the natural sugars in breast milk are left in contact with teeth for long periods.  Sugar feeds decay-causing oral bacteria, and these bacteria in turn release tooth-eroding acids. The softer teeth of a young child are particularly vulnerable to these acids; the end result can be tooth decay.

This condition, technically known as “early child caries,” is referred to in laymen’s terms as “baby bottle tooth decay.” However, it can result from nighttime feedings by bottle or breast. The best way to prevent this problem is to avoid nursing babies to sleep at night once they reach the teething stage; a bottle-fed baby should not be allowed to fall asleep with anything but water in their bottle or “sippy cup.”

Here are some other basics of infant dental care that every parent should know:

  • Wipe your baby’s newly emerging teeth with a clean, moist washcloth after feedings.
  • Brush teeth that have completely grown in with a soft-bristled, child-size toothbrush and a smear of fluoride toothpaste no bigger than a grain of rice.
  • Start regular dental checkups by the first birthday.

Fortunately, Ramsey reports that his son is doing very well after an extended period of professional dental treatments and parental vigilance.

“It took a number of months, but his teeth are much, much better,” he said. “Right now we’re still helping him and we’re still really on top of the teeth situation.”

If you would like more information on dental care for babies and toddlers, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more by reading the Dear Doctor magazine articles “The Age One Dental Visit” and “Dentistry & Oral Health for Children.”

By Dentistry at Camp Creek
February 10, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: dentures  

Discover just how dentures could give you a more youthful and confident smile.

Total tooth loss can feel defeating, but it doesn’t have to. Find out how your Atlanta dentist Dr. Travon Halt can easily give you your smile back with dentures.

What are dentures?Denture

This removable dental prosthesis is used to replace missing permanent teeth to help patients regain a full smile. There are many reasons for tooth loss, including traumatic injury, gum disease or dental decay. But replacing all of your teeth with dentures is an easy way to restore your oral health.

Are there different types of dentures?

There are three different kinds of dentures:

  • Immediate: These dentures are placed in one dental visit. If you need to have any teeth extracted, these dentures will also be fitted the same day as your extraction. While we will take impressions of your mouth prior to your tooth extraction, you won’t have to worry about waiting until your mouth fully heals to get dentures.
  • Conventional: After extracting any teeth that must be removed, we will wait until your mouth heals to place your full dentures. It can take several months to begin wearing your conventional dentures, depending on how quickly your mouth heals.
  • Overdentures: If you still have some healthy teeth, we will use them to support your dentures. Your dentures will then be fitted over the natural teeth.

If you are unsure which type of dentures is right for you, then it’s time to talk to your Atlanta dentist to find out more.

What should I know about wearing dentures?

Dentures should be treated just like natural teeth, which means you should brush them every day. Also, be sure to rinse your dentures after eating to remove food and other debris. Opt for soft-bristled toothbrushes and non-abrasive cleaners. If you are unsure which products to use on your dentures ask your Atlanta dentist.

When you aren’t wearing your dentures be sure to place them in water so they don’t dry out and warp. At the end of each evening, take out your dentures and place them in a denture-soaking solution. Before placing dentures back in each morning, be sure to rinse them thoroughly first.

Want to find out if dentures are right for you. Then call Dentistry at Camp Creek to schedule that much-needed consultation with us.

By Dentistry at Camp Creek
February 09, 2016
Category: Oral Health
Tags: tmj  

Wonder if your jaw pain and stiffness is due to a TMJ disorder? It’s time to find out!

Whether you’ve just been diagnosed by one of our South Atlanta, GA dentists Dr. Travon Holt and Dr. Tarem Eric Hendricks or your tmjsymptoms are pointing to TMJ disorder it’s never too late to seek the treatment you deserve. Find out more about this common condition and how we can help!

Q. What is TMJ disorder?

A. Known as temporomandibular joint and muscle disorder, this condition can cause pain and other issues for the jaw joints and muscles that can also affect how the jaw moves.

Q. What are the symptoms?

A. Some of the more common symptoms people with TMJ disorder experience include:

  • Jaw pain
  • Jaw stiffness
  • Sore jaw and facial muscles
  • Clicking or popping in the jaw
  • Headaches
  • Limited jaw movement

Q. Is it treatable?

A. Yes, there are a lot of things you can do to ease your symptoms and manage your condition. We’ll start with the conservative treatment options first. This includes things like eating softer foods, icing the joint to reduce pain and swelling, avoiding chewing gum or other habits that require extreme jaw movements and learning ways to manage stress to reduce teeth grinding, which puts a lot of unnecessary pressure on the jaw.

Over-the-counter pain medications and oral appliances like a bite guard may also be recommended to help provide some pain relief. Surgery is rarely required when it comes to handling your TMJ symptoms, as most conservative treatments will offer the symptom management you need.

Dentistry at Camp Creek is here for all of your dental needs. Our general dentists in Atlanta, GA are here to make sure that you have a healthy smile that lasts.

By Dentistry at Camp Creek
February 04, 2016
Category: Oral Health

Your family uses fluoride toothpaste and your drinking water is fluoridated too. So with the fluoride your child already takes in, is it really necessary for topical fluoride treatments during their regular dental visits?

The answer is most definitely. Fluoride has a unique ability to strengthen enamel, your teeth’s protective cover against decay and other diseases. It does this by infusing itself in the enamel structure and making it that much more resistant to acid attack and decay.

This infusion occurs in two ways. First, growing teeth obtain it through the bloodstream as they incorporate other minerals that make up the enamel structure. The very small amount of fluoride added to drinking water — as low as one part per million (ppm) — imparts sufficient fluoride to developing teeth. In the absence of fluoridated water, dietary fluoride supplements can achieve the same effect.

The second way is just after the teeth have erupted and are still quite young. In this case, fluoride coming in direct contact with the enamel surface is absorbed, resulting in changes to the enamel’s crystalline structure that will create added strength. This can occur to a limited degree through fluoride toothpaste or other dental products. The concentration of fluoride in these products, though, is relatively low (850-1500 ppm) as mandated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for safety.

Professional applications, on the other hand, are much higher — 12,300 to 22,600 ppm depending on their form. They’re applied, of course, under strict clinical guidelines to cleaned tooth surfaces, usually as a gel, foam or varnish. The latter form will often continue leaching fluoride into the enamel for a month or more.

These topical applications can greatly strengthen the teeth of children who don’t have the benefit of fluoridated water or may be at higher risk for dental disease because of socio-economic conditions. But they can still be helpful for children with adequate fluoride exposure and low risk factors for disease. At the very least, fluoride treatments can give your child an added boost of protection as their teeth continue to develop.

If you would like more information on topical fluoride treatments for children, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Topical Fluoride.”