What's a habit? Basically, it's a behavior you consistently perform without much forethought—you seemingly do it automatically. They can be good (taking a bath every day); or, they can be bad (devouring an entire bag of chocolate chip cookies every day). Our goal, therefore, should be to develop more good habits than bad.
One other thing about habits: we start forming them early. You might even have habits as an adult that began before you could walk. Which is why helping children develop good habits and avoid bad ones remains a top priority for parents.
Good habits also play a major role in keeping your teeth and gums healthy. Habits like the following that your kids form—or don't form—could pay oral health dividends throughout their lives.
Daily hygiene. Brushing and flossing is the single best habit for ensuring healthy teeth and gums. Removing disease-causing plaque on a daily basis drastically reduces a person's risk for tooth decay and gum disease. So, start forming this one as early as possible—you can even make a game of it!
Dental-friendly eating. To paraphrase a popular saying, "Your teeth and gums are what you eat." Dairy, vegetables and other whole foods promote good dental health, while processed foods heavy on sugar contribute to dental disease. Steer your child toward a lifetime of good food choices, especially by setting a good example.
Late thumb-sucking. It's a nearly universal habit among infants and toddlers to suck their thumbs or fingers. Early on, it doesn't pose much of a threat—but if it extends into later childhood, it could lead to poor bite formation. It's best to encourage your child to stop sucking their thumbs, fingers or pacifiers by age 3.
Later-developing bad habits. Children often come into their own socially by the time they've entered puberty. But while this is a welcome development on the road to adulthood, the pressure from peers may lead them to develop habits not conducive to good oral health—tobacco, drug or alcohol use, or oral piercings. Exert your influence as a parent to help them avoid these bad oral habits.
If you would like more information on best dental care practices 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 “How to Help Your Child Develop the Best Habits for Oral Health.”
For one out of three Americans, a bite of ice cream or a sip of hot coffee can set off a sudden jolt of pain. Fortunately, there are ways to reduce these painful episodes of tooth sensitivity and their severity.
To understand the primary reasons that people experience tooth sensitivity, we must first consider a little tooth anatomy. Just below a tooth's outer enamel is a layer of tooth structure called dentin, composed of tiny tunnels or tubules that transmit sensations of temperature or pressure to the nerves in the central pulp. These tubules are analogous to conduits through which electrical wires pass.
Enamel on the crown, along with gum tissue and a thin material called cementum covering the roots, help muffle sensations so as to prevent an overload on the nerves. But if either of those protective areas become compromised the nerves could in turn experience the full brunt of these sensations.
As such, softened and eroded enamel from tooth decay could expose the dentin. Receding gums, commonly caused by gum disease, can also expose dentin near the roots since the remaining cementum offers little protection. In either case, nerves in the pulp may become subject to extreme sensations caused by temperature or while biting down, which then causes them to fire off pain signals to the brain.
Thus, to treat sensitive teeth we must first determine whether it's the result of tooth decay, gum disease or some other condition, and then treat any underlying disease. If it's decay-related, we'll want to repair any cavities with a filling, or perform a root canal if the infection has spread deeper into the tooth.
For receded gums, we'll first want to treat any lingering gum disease. Once we've brought the infection under control, it's possible then for the gums to heal and regenerate, eventually treating the roots with desensitizing products. In some cases, though, we may have to surgically graft new tissue to the receded area to cover the roots.
The good news is that you can lower your chances of tooth sensitivity by preventing these dental diseases. To do that, be sure you're brushing and flossing daily to remove disease-causing plaque, and visiting your dentist at least twice a year for professional cleanings and checkups.
If you would like more information on tooth sensitivity, 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 “Treatment of Tooth Sensitivity.”
If you are missing a tooth you may be curious about what options you have when it comes to restoring your smile. Dental implants are in many ways the best solution to tooth loss. They are meant to be a final and complete restoration of a missing tooth. This treatment will last much longer and will be stronger than other options. Learn more about dental implants in Southgate, MI, from Dr. Jason Cohen and Dr. Timothy Killgrove of Cohen Modern Dentistry.
The key difference between dental implants and other methods of restoration, such as bridges and dentures, has to do with the way in which they are supported. Dental bridges depend on adjacent teeth to serve as support for the tooth they are replacing. To accomplish this, these healthy teeth need to be reshaped so that a crown can be attached to them, then they will hold your new tooth in place.
Dentures depend on suction as their main method of support. These require a proper fit to perform at their best. So many of the common complaints people have regarding dentures are due to this factor. A dental implant is supported in a very similar way to your natural teeth. They use a titanium post that is permanently implanted onto the bone of your jaw, and it's onto this that your new tooth will be attached.
Dental Implants in Southgate, MI
One downside to dental implants is that they do require a longer initial investment of time, as the implanted post can take months to heal and fuse with the jaw bone. Implants can last a lifetime with proper care, and they don't need any special treatment when it comes to hygiene or diet, although good dental habits remain key to maintaining your smile.
If you're ready to restore a single missing tooth or a complete smile, find out if you're a candidate for dental implants. Call (734) 283-1263 to schedule a consultation in Southgate, MI, from Dr. Cohen and Dr. Killgrove of Cohen Modern Dentistry.
The development of the CEREC system is one of the most revolutionary developments in dentistry. It allows your dentist to create a new dental crown or restoration right there in his office. Say goodbye to multiple appointments and uncomfortable temporary solutions. Dr. Jason Cohen and Dr. Timothy Killgrove at Cohen Modern Dentistry in Southgate, MI, offer these fast and efficient restorations for all eligible patients. Here's everything you've ever wanted to know about CEREC.
What is CEREC?
CEREC stands for Chairside Economical Restorations of Esthetic Ceramic. It is a 3D chairside design and milling technology that allows dentists to design and build high-quality dental restorations (onlays, inlays, bridges, or crowns) in one single visit. Who wouldn't like to have attractive, high-quality dental restorations in only one appointment at the dentist?
First, a camera is used to take a digital photo of your tooth. The CEREC software then takes the photo and converts it into a 3-D virtual model on the computer screen. Your dentist works with the software to design your perfect restoration. Finally, a ceramic block that matches the shade of your tooth is placed in the CEREC milling machine. The machine then does what it’s designed to do and makes you a new restoration right there!
Benefits of CEREC
Your dental restoration is created from a thick, durable block of ceramic that is able to withstand wear and tear. CEREC dental restorations won't crack or leak over time. They are also tailored to match the natural shade of your teeth. Nothing gives the same luster and depth as CEREC dental restorations. With CEREC dental restorations you can have a smile that's strong and beautiful!
If you need a dental restoration, why wait? We can help you today. Call Dr. Jason Cohen and Dr. Timothy Killgrove at Cohen Modern Dentistry in Southgate, MI, at 734-283-1263. CEREC dental restorations will improve your appearance and give you the confidence to smile again. Remember, a better life starts with a better-looking smile.
Since his breakout role as Dr. Doug Ross in the 90's TV drama ER, George Clooney has enjoyed a blockbuster career as an award-winning actor, director and producer. He's still going strong, as seen in the recent film The Midnight Sky, which Clooney directed and starred in. This sci-fi drama set a record as the most-watched movie on Netflix for the first five days after its late December release. And although now well into middle age, Clooney still possesses a winsome charm epitomized by his devil-may-care smile.
But he didn't always have his enigmatic grin. Early on, his struggles pursuing his burgeoning acting career triggered a stressful habit of grinding his teeth. This took a toll, as his teeth began to look worn and yellowed, giving his smile—and him—a prematurely aged appearance.
Clooney's not alone. For many of us, our fast-paced lives have created undue stress that we struggle to manage. This pent-up stress has to go somewhere, and for a number of individuals it's expressed through involuntary grinding or gritting of the teeth. This may not only lead to serious dental problems, but it can also diminish an otherwise attractive smile.
There are ways to minimize teeth grinding, the most important of which is to address the underlying stress fueling the habit. It's possible to get a handle on stress through professional counseling, biofeedback therapy, meditation or other relaxation techniques. You can also reduce the habit's effects with a custom-made oral device that prevents the teeth from making solid contact during a grinding episode.
But what if teeth grinding has already taken a toll on your teeth making them look worn down? Do what Clooney did—put a new “face” on your teeth with dental veneers. These thin layers of porcelain are bonded to teeth to mask all sorts of blemishes, including chips, heavy staining and, yes, teeth that appear shortened due to accelerated wearing. And they're custom-designed and fashioned to blend seamlessly with other teeth to transform your smile. Although they're not indestructible, they're quite durable and can last for years.
Veneers can correct many mild to moderate dental defects, but if your teeth are in worse shape, porcelain crowns may be the answer. A crown, which bonds to a prepared tooth to completely cover it, allows you the advantage of keeping your natural tooth while still enhancing its appearance.
Although different in degree, both veneers and crowns require permanently altering the teeth, such that they will require a dental restoration from then on. But if you're looking for an effective way to transform your worn or otherwise distressed teeth into a beautiful smile, it's a sound investment.
Just like George Clooney, your smile is an important part of who you are. We can help you make it as appealing as possible with veneers or other dental enhancements. Call us today to get started on the path to a more attractive smile.
If you would like more information about dental veneers and other smile enhancements, please contact us or schedule a consultation. To learn more, read the Dear Doctor magazine article “Porcelain Veneers.”
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