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Dental FAQs

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Check out these helpful videos where Dr. Caven answers the important questions patients have about dentistry.

How to Get Over Your Fear of Dentists

Dental anxiety is very real in this world. Most Americans get over their fear of going to the dentist by not going at all. That creates more problems, and ultimately more fear and more cost. Here is what we need to do: routine and consistent appointments with your dentist helps us prevent problems and helps you get used to it and overcome your fear.

However, if you are somebody that has not been to the dentist in a long time, it's okay. The important thing is that you find a dentist that you're comfortable with, and you're comfortable with their team. When we see patients, we give them plenty of time. Tell us your story, tell us why you're nervous, let's talk it out, is usually all that's required.

We also offer creature comforts. We have televisions in the ceilings along with blankets and headphones that allow you to control the volume. We give you the remote control and provide aromatherapy. These things really help, and of course there are medications that we can prescribe to people to help them simply get over the edge when needed.

What is T.M.J?

TMJ stands for temporomandibular joint, and it's just the name of your jaw joint, although many people confuse it for a diagnosis or a condition. Just like any joint you can have problems in the jaw joint like pain, clicking in the joint, or a loss of range of motion. For example, you can get a locked open or a locked closed, which can be very scary. Also, headaches. So many people suffer from headaches that are really a dental condition. If you're experiencing any pain or soreness or headaches, ask your dentist. You'll be surprised at what dentists can do to help with your level of comfort, all within the TMJ umbrella.

Pros and Cons of Getting a Bridge

 

What are the Pros and Cons of Getting an Implant?

Dental implants have been in dentistry for about 25 years. Did you know that the very first implants placed are still in great function? They are a wonderful way to replace missing teeth. They are so strong and so natural and so comfortable, that once you've gotten the implant placed, you'll forget what tooth it is.

If you're thinking about getting an implant, there are a couple of things you need to consider. One is the time frame with dental implants, it takes a little bit longer to get to the final product but it is so worth it. The second thing is that the cost of an implant might be a little more expensive than the alternative but that's just a short run expense. When you look over the course of your life, dental implants will be far less expensive than the alternatives. It is the best way to replace a missing tooth.

How Much do Veneers Cost?

Dental veneers are a wonderful thing. They're a piece of porcelain that's custom made to fit to your teeth. With veneers we can control the shape, the size, the color of your smile, and really make some amazing changes. Go to our website and see some of the before and after pictures and see the transformations that have been made with those people's smiles.

Asking about the price of a veneer is like asking about the price of a dinner at a restaurant. It depends on the restaurant and what you get. That's the same with dental veneers. Each veneer is made by an artist in a dental lab. Some artists are going to charge more than others. Therefore, dentists are going to charge more than others. Gosh, you can spend hundreds of dollars on a veneer up to thousands of dollars on a veneer. That's just for one veneer.

Ask your dentist. Give them a call. If you're looking to change your smile, find out what's available to you because dental veneers are a wonderful way of really creating the smile that you’ve been dreaming about.

What are the Warning Signs of Oral Cancer?

We are becoming more and more aware of oral cancer today. It is a potentially deadly cancer so we need to take it very serious. We start with risk factors. We want to try to avoid smoking, drinking in excess, using chewing tobacco. There are certain human papilloma viruses which are sexually transmitted disease that are closely linked to oral cancer.

As far as warning signs, lesions, white patches on the side of your tongue or your lower lip or anywhere else in your mouth that stays there for 14 days or more are areas that you really want to get checked out. Any stiffness of your tongue or lip, or asymmetry of your tongue, or tingling, obviously swelling. These are things that you really want to get a health care provider to assess for you, ideally your dentist but even your primary care physician. Don't play around with oral cancer; it is a bad one to get.

When Should a Child Have Their First Dental Appointment?

The American Academy or Pediatric Dentist recommends that you take your child to the dentist after the first birthday, and I don’t think they mean 10 years after the first birthday. I think they want you to go in early because really setting up the good habits for your child in an early age is key. When they come in we just have a simple appointment, we count their teeth, we kind of say hello, we show them a little bit about brushing in a different instruments that we have but we don't really do anything.

Really just let's that child feeling comfortable with another person looking at their teeth. Another key thing when taking care of your children's teeth, floss their teeth everyday, go to the store get a little flosser that you can hold and you floss their teeth, you'd be surprised at what you're pulling out from in between their teeth and that's got to be the law for them every night, your kid gets their teeth floss. That will save them so much hassle growing up.

How Safe Are Dental X-Rays

Dental x-rays are safe. With the amazing advancements in that technology our x-rays today are 80 to 90% less radiation than they were even 20 years ago. As a matter of fact, just walking around, living your life, driving your car you're getting seven times the amount of radiation that you would get in the a full series of x-rays, which is 20 x-rays, and we only do that once out of every five years.

Since x-rays are the foundation to prevention and diagnosis, don't let your fear of radiation stop you from getting the treatment that you need.

What Options are Available for Changing the Shape of my Teeth?

There are some people who have sharp edges or chips on their front teeth that really bother them. The great thing is that a lot of times, we can just smooth or contour those edges, takes only a few minutes, no Novocain, very easy to do and it's amazing what a little re-contouring can do and how it really helps to change the smile.

However, there are some people who have bigger issues with their teeth and really they want to change their smile more dramatically. For those people, we have customized dental veneers or crowns which are pieces of porcelain and we can fit them over the teeth. When we do that we can really change the shape and color and size of the teeth very nicely.

You can look at our website and see some before and after pictures to see really how these transformations can affect somebody. It's a really wonderful, great way to enhance your smile.

How do Whitening Toothpastes Work?

Whitening toothpastes can be very effective to take care of superficial stains like from drinking tea or coffee, even some smoking. However, some people have a natural darker color to their teeth, or if they smoke a lot whitening toothpaste will be less effective. You have to remember, though, that whitening toothpastes can be very abrasive and they can actually damage your gums if you use them aggressively.

If you don't like the color of your teeth, there are some products that can help over the counter to whiten your teeth, or you can go see your dentist and get professional-grade whitening like the zoom whitening, or the take-home whitening trays are very effective.

First Coast News New Age of Dentistry

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