Posts for category: Dental Procedures
Dr. Lynette Smith and Dr. Bennett Smith of Blue Ridge Dental perform tooth extractions in Mount Airy, NC, for patients with damaged teeth. Sometimes it's best for the health of your mouth to remove a damaged tooth, and we can help!
Signs your tooth needs to be extracted
It is always your dentist's goal to help preserve your natural teeth to keep your mouth healthy and your smile beautiful. But when a tooth is hopelessly decayed or damaged, it's best for the health of your mouth to have it completely removed. These are some reasons you may need an extraction:
- Impacted wisdom teeth
- Damage by trauma like a chip
- A tooth cracked below the gum line
- Removing teeth for orthodontic treatment
In these cases, removing teeth would be beneficial for the health of your mouth and orthodontic treatment. Tooth extractions at Blue Ridge Dental keep your mouth healthy.
When you need a tooth extraction in Mount Airy, NC, don't panic! This minor surgery is routine and your mouth will feel back to normal in just a few days. Your dentist will start with an x-ray to assess the tooth and help predict any complications with the extraction. Typically you are numbed with local anesthesia. Other sedatives like oral medication and nitrous oxide can be used as well. A tooth may need to be sectioned or broken into pieces to remove.
After your extraction, the socket is packed with gauze to stop any bleeding and you may need stitches. While you heal, stick to a soft food diet. You may have some swelling and discomfort for a couple of days, and your dentist may recommend anti-inflammatory medication to help with any pain.
When you need a tooth extraction in Mount Airy, NC, Dr. Lynette Smith and Dr. Bennett Smith are here for you at Blue Ridge Dental. Contact us for an appointment at (336) 789-5306.
Dr. Lynette Smith and Dr. G. Bennett Smith at Blue Ridge Dental perform root canals for patients in Mount Airy, NC. If you're having tooth pain, come see your dentist while we can still save your tooth with a root canal!
What is a root canal?
A root canal, or endodontic treatment, is a way to salvage an infected tooth. If you have an infection the tooth pulp can be removed, preserving the rest of your natural tooth.
First, your tooth and the area around it are numbed. The root canal procedure includes creating an opening in the crown of the tooth and removing the tooth's root and the infected tooth pulp, as well as a thorough cleaning of the tooth's canal system. Your dentist may place medicine in the tooth to prevent infection. A filling is placed to prevent further infection and finish your tooth. This procedure can save your natural tooth and keep you from needing a dental implant.
When do I see my dentist about a root canal?
Patients who need a root canal often notice worsening pain in the tooth. The goal of regular dental appointments is to help you before you need a root canal, but don't ignore any of these signs:
- Tooth pain
- Tooth sensitivity
- A gum blister
- Jaw pain or swelling
These are all signs that you may have an infected tooth, but you can actually have tooth decay without feeling pain or experiencing symptoms. This is another reason it's important to have regular exams.
Many patients try to delay coming to the dentist for a root canal because of fear of the pain, but the procedure is similar to getting a filling in terms of discomfort, as you are numbed during the root canal. You may have some discomfort for a few days after the procedure, and your dentist will recommend the best way to relieve any pain. A root canal actually saves you from further tooth pain or a complete dental abscess.
Keeping up with regular dental appointments is important to prevent root canals, but if you do get an infected tooth Dr. Lynette Smith and Dr. G. Bennett Smith can help. Call Blue Ridge Dental in Mount Airy, NC, at (336) 789-5306.
All your oral health needs are cared for at one comfortable, convenient location. Does this sound too good to be true? It's not if your dentists are Dr. Lynette Smith and Dr. G. Bennett Smith in Mount Airy, NC. Known for their compassionate preventive, restorative, and cosmetic care, your team at Blue Ridge Dental really loves all their patients. Let's learn about just a few of their treatments.
This takes care of gum disease, the leading cause of tooth loss among American adults (according to the CDC). With every check-up at Blue Ridge Dental in Mount Airy, both your hygienist and your dentist will perform a complete soft tissue assessment, looking for signs of dangerous gum disease.
If you show symptoms, Dr. Smith will devise the right treatment plan to manage your condition and prevent further damage. Care could include antibiotic therapy, tooth scaling and root planning, and tips and techniques on improving both flossing and brushing at home.
Root canal therapy
This reliable, restorative treatment heals an infected or damaged tooth, removing its inflamed pulp, sealing it, and crowning it for many years of additional use. Your dentist does the exam, X-rays, and complete restoration entirely in our Mount Airy, NC, office.
Most patients do very well with just a local anesthetic, and typically, teeth restored in this way last just as long as other natural teeth, says the American Association of Endodontists. That saves you extraction and expensive tooth replacement.
At Blue Ridge Dental, we do all we can to preserve your natural tooth structure. However, sometimes a tooth must be extracted for the good of your oral and systemic health. Our dentists do both simple and surgical extractions involving:
- Irretrievably decayed, infected, or damaged teeth
- Baby teeth that impede orthodontic treatment
- Erupted or impacted wisdom teeth
Plus, if you require tooth replacement afterward, we provide that as well.
How your smile looks and how you feel about it are important, too. For an assessment of how your smile can change for the better, come in for a cosmetic dentistry consultation with Dr. Smith. Tell your dentist what you want to improve, and together, you'll discover how to reach those aesthetic goals.
Our cosmetic dentistry services include:
- Porcelain veneers
- Porcelain crowns
- White fillings
- In-office and take-home teeth whitening
At Blue Ridge Dental in Mount Airy, NC, your dentists, and their staff consider patients as long-term friends. Count on their excellent dental treatments and your thriving oral health for years to come. Phone for an appointment with either Dr. Lynette Smith or Dr. G. Bennett Smith: (336) 789-5306.
Your mild gum disease (gingivitis) may lead to aggressive periodontitis, tooth loss and serious health problems. At Blue Ridge Dental in Mount Airy, NC, Dr. G. Bennett Smith and Dr. Lynette Smith provide periodontal treatments that really work. They can help you regain full oral health.
The symptoms of gum disease
Bleeding gums is the primary indicator, says the American Academy of Periodontology (AAP). More quickly than you think, this mild sign of gingivitis progresses to:
- Puffy, tender, red gum tissue
- Receding gums
- Dental sensitivity (pain when biting down or consuming hot or cold foods)
- A long tooth appearance due to uncovered tooth roots
- Loose, gapped teeth
- A changed dental bite
- Sores on the gums and pus between teeth
- Bad breath which is consistently strong and unresponsive to mouth rinses or tooth brushing
Also, your dentist at Blue Ridge Dental observes gum disease during a routine exam, measuring gum pockets with a tiny probe. Pockets, or sulci, are diagnostic for periodontitis when they are deeper than three millimeters.
Periodontal treatments at our Mount Airy office
Recommendations to resolve gum problems vary according to patient need. Thankfully, they can achieve good results when you adhere to a maintenance plan at Blue Ridge Dental.
1. Deep cleaning and root planing removes extensive deposits of plaque and tartar between teeth and well below the gum line.
2. Antimicrobial medications speed healing and help gums re-attach to root surfaces.
3. Adjustment of your dental bite with a mouth guard, crowns or a periodontal splint. Typically, splints are thin strips of metal bonded to the backside of selected teeth to stabilize and support them.
4. Oral hygiene at home must include daily flossing and twice a day tooth brushing with a soft brush. Your dentist may advise an anti-plaque mouth rinse, too.
5. Stop tobacco usage.
6. Drink water to increase your saliva production and keep tooth surfaces and soft tissues clean and hydrated.
7. Begin a healthier diet to include fresh vegetables and fruit and high-fiber cereals and breads.
When patients suffer tooth loss due to periodontitis, our dentists evaluate them for dental implant placement. Grafting may precede implant procedures if tests show sufficient bone in the jaw to support dental implants.
Learn more about gum disease
You can get ahead of gum problems when you recognize and treat them. At Blue Ridge Dental in Mount Airy, NC, our periodontal treatments work. Dr. G. Bennett Smith and Dr. Lynette Smith want all their patients to enjoy vibrant oral health. Call us today for a consultation: (336) 789-5306.
Wondering if those puffy gums could actually mean that you have gum disease?
While gum disease can wreak serious havoc on our oral health, it’s often hard to detect during its early stages. In fact, many people have gum disease, yet don’t even know it! Although the condition can be easy to overlook, it’s still important that regularly attend your six-month dental checkups with our Mount Airy, NC, dentists, Drs. Ben and Lynette Smith, to ensure that if there is something wrong, it can be caught early!
The Stages of Gum Disease
There are several stages of gum disease. The first stage is known as gingivitis, which causes inflammation to the gum tissue due to plaque buildup between the teeth and the gums. If your Mount Airy, NC, general dentist detects gingivitis, it can often be reversed with professional dental cleanings and improved at-home dental care.
Once gum disease advances, it turns into periodontitis. While periodontitis cannot be reversed, it can be treated with a simple scaling and root planing procedure (essentially this is a very deep cleaning for your teeth, their roots, and your gums). It’s important to note that periodontitis doesn’t just impact the health of your gums, it also affects the jawbone and your teeth.
If the problem isn’t addressed this could lead to bone and tooth loss. If bone or tooth loss has already occurred, you may need to see a periodontist who can provide more advanced and specialized treatment to restore lost bone and tissue.
The Warning Signs of Gum Disease
It’s surprisingly easy to protect your gums from gum disease. By brushing and flossing regularly you can greatly reduce your risk. Of course, it’s also important that you keep an eye out for any of these warning signs of gum disease,
- Gums that bleed, especially when brushing or flossing
- Receding gums (teeth that appear longer than they normally do)
- Puffy, inflamed gums
- Gums that are tender to the touch
- Pain when chewing
- Persistent and unexplained bad breath
- Changes in bite
- Loose teeth
These are symptoms that should not go on ignored, for they will only get worse with time. Even something as simple as gums that bleed every time you floss is a warning sign that you could be dealing with gum disease!
Contact us today!
Are you concerned about the health of your gums? Dealing with any of the symptoms above? If so, call Blue Ridge Dental in Mount Airy, NC, today to schedule your next dental appointment. Our number is (336) 789-5306.