Gary L. Sandler, DDS & Bonnie E. Lipow, DDS
The cause of bad breath is usually related to dental problems. Poor oral hygiene, gum disease, dry mouth,
and the effects of smoking are the major contributors to this problem. If all of these factors have been eliminated and bad
breath still exists, certain medical conditions could be the cause, such as digestive problems, chronic sinusitis, diabetes, or side
effects of certain medications....learn more
Bruxism or grinding of the teeth:
is relatively common and occurs more often
during sleep, but can take place at any time. This habit, continued consciously or unconsciously over a period of time, can
result in tooth abrasion or wearing down of the teeth and loss of tooth structure. In permanent teeth, bruxism can
lead to periodontal disease (bone loss) and/or a jaw joint disorder, commonly referred to as Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction (TMD) which
may cause headaches, joint noises and facial pain. Bruxism can be diagnosed at a routine dental visit. Treatment
may include bite adjustments, muscle relaxants, aspirin, biofeedback, hot wet compresses, and a soft diet. Sometimes, a
special small plastic oral appliance is indicated in order to relieve symptoms, and prevent further damage....learn more
oral hygiene and a diet high in sugar and sticky starchy foods can cause cavities.
learn more about the causes of cavities and
It is extremely important that infants and young children do not walk around constantly with a bottle
in their mouth, nor go to sleep with a bottle, with anything other than water in the bottle. Otherwise, they can develop
a condition known as "Bottle Rot" or "Nursing Bottle Mouth Syndrome", which will quickly destroy primary (or baby) teeth and
lead to serious problems....learn more
Regular dental visits will allow the dentist to catch cavities at an early stage
and minimize tooth destruction.
Individual discolored dark front tooth (teeth): This discoloration, usually
indicates a change in the vitality of the nerve of the tooth, most likely due to a past history of trauma to the tooth.
It may take weeks, months or sometimes even longer to develop and may be the only indication of a more serious underlying dental infection
which needs immediate attention. Left untreated, it can lead to the spread of infection, sometimes damage to other permanent
teeth and other serious complications. Accompanying swelling and fever requires immediate attention!
Dry mouth: This
is a common side effect of some medications or may be a symptom of certain diseases. Dry mouth is regarded as a significant
health problem. It can contribute to tooth decay, gum disease, or other oral infections. Professional advice should be
sought, not only because it may reflect other more serious medical problems, but various treatments are available.
or gum swelling: Swelling may indicate an abscessed tooth or infected gums. It may be caused by a deep cavity or by past history
of trauma with subsequent nerve damage. In primary teeth, this sometimes requires the extraction of the infected tooth to prevent
possible damage to the underlying permanent tooth and spread of infection. In permanent teeth, Root Canal Therapy is usually
required in order to save the tooth. There are other causes of swelling in the mouth and your dentist should be consulted immediately
to determine the cause.
Fractured teeth from trauma: In order to minimize the chance of unnecessary additional problems,
and improve the chance of a successful treatment outcome, seek professional care as soon as possible! Do not wait
for a dental emergency to arise.
Over-retained primary (baby) teeth: A primary tooth still in position with a permanent
tooth trying to come into the same space is termed an "over-retained" tooth, and usually requires removal of the primary tooth.
The presence of primary teeth in teenagers and adults indicates a potential problem, such as a congenitally missing or impacted permanent
tooth. Early diagnosis allows for better final results. Regular dental care will allow the dentist to monitor this situation,
suggest alternative treatment options and help determine best treatment for you.
Also known as gum
disease, Periodontal Disease is caused by bacteria, and it advances in stages, destroying the gum tissue and ligaments that connect
the teeth to the bone. Periodontal disease will destroy the bone that anchors the tooth, leading to tooth loss. Symptoms
include bad breath or a funny taste in mouth, bleeding gums, drifting teeth or spaces that develop between teeth, and a feeling that
your bite has changed. Proper daily oral hygiene and regular professional care are the keys to preventing Periodontal Disease....learn
Permanent tooth accidentally knocked out of the mouth: Although not a common problem, we felt it should be included
as a reference so you will know what to do in case of an emergency. Clean the tooth with water, but avoid touching the
root of the tooth, and do not scrub it. Try to stick the tooth back in to the socket as soon as possible. Hold it firmly
in place until help is obtained. If you are unable to replace the tooth in the socket, put it in milk, water, or ice.
Get to the dentist or emergency room as soon as possible. If primary or permanent teeth are displaced or moved out of their normal
position, seek professional care immediately.
Tooth sensitivity: There are many causes of tooth sensitivity. Often
it is due to a cavity, but there are many other causes such as fractured teeth, bruxism, trauma, and exposed root surfaces due
to gingival recession. Do not try to diagnose the problem yourself, nor wait until it gets worse and you have a dental emergency.
Instead, call your dentist as only your dentist can determine the cause of the sensitivity, how serious the problem is,
and render appropriate treatment.
Sores in the mouth: One of the most common sores in the mouth are canker sores
(aphthous ulcers), and can occur anywhere in the mouth. Medications can be given to relieve the pain and speed
healing. Avoid eating hot, spicy and acidic foods or beverages. There are many other causes of sores in the mouth, including
abrasions, cuts, viral and fungal infections and some systemic diseases. If the pain does not go away in seven to ten days, seek
Wisdom teeth: Wisdom teeth can cause pain during eruption. Insufficient room for the
eruption of wisdom teeth is extremely common. Only with the use of x-rays and a visual examination, can a dentist determine
if the wisdom tooth can erupt normally and if further treatment is necessary. An infection may occur when the tooth is not fully
erupted. Partially erupted wisdom teeth can lead to cavities and destruction of healthy teeth and periodontal or gum
disease, even if there is no pain.
If swelling arises, immediate care is necessary to prevent the possible spread of infection.
Early diagnosis and treatment is essential to preventing more serious complications....learn more
The material contained in this site is intended as a reference guide only. It is to be used for informational purposes only, and not as dental or medical advice.