8035 W Manchester Suite B
Playa Del Rey, CA 90293
Mouton, Marsha E D.D.S.
810 E Manchester Blvd # 1
Inglewood, CA, 90301-9222
A Briter Smile Dental Group, D.D.S.
4905 York Blvd
Los Angeles, CA, 90042-1609
Jeffrey A Meckler Inc
333 El Dorado St
Monterey, CA, 93940-4606
Sturm, A Jack D.D.S.
1515 State St # 7
Santa Barbara, CA, 93101-2536
When you first visit a new dentist, part of your initial exam is an assessment of your "bite" - the way teeth meet as the jaws close. Later, after a filling or placement of a dental crown, your bite will be tested again to be sure the tooth restoration fits well with other teeth. Nearly all dental patients have "been there." And there's good reason for this attention to bite.
Chewing, tooth wear and joint function all depend on the balanced opposition of teeth in each jaw. Any disruption of a good bite, either by broken, loose, or lost teeth, is trouble in need of repair. In the worst-case scenario - the jaws themselves present skeletal problems - orthodontic treatment is considered. However, most malocclusions (bad bites) are treatable right in your dentist's office.
Your dentist will first locate ill-fitting teeth by routine bite analysis. You will bite down on a sheet of special paper that marks teeth with uneven wear. If this doesn't tell your dentist enough, he or she may take impressions, from which study models are built. This gives your dentist a very visual demonstration of what's wrong.
High points in enamel that interfere with normal contact may be filed away. Eroded fillings call for replacements. Lost teeth need a bridge or dental implants to prevent opposing teeth from overgrowth. There are any number of solutions to a bad bite, all important to your dental health.
Anytime you notice a change in your chewing habits, or feel more pressure than usual on a solitary tooth, bring it to your dentist's attention. You'll notice the abnormality, maybe before your dentist detects it. Since you'll be working together, tell your dentist your suspicions and, if it's broken, it can be fixed.
Thinking about your baby and prenatal care is normal during pregnancy; however, thinking about your oral health and dental care may not be forefront on your mind, but dentistry is still very important. Women need to pay special attention to their teeth and gums especially during pregnancy to avoid the increased risk of dental problems.
Pregnancy brings a change in oral health and hormones, especially increased levels of estrogen and progesterone, which are linked to plaque buildup on teeth. Plaque that is not removed can cause gingivitis and swollen gums that are tender and prone to bleed. Most pregnant women experience gingivitis to some degree, but it doesn't usually surface until the second trimester.
If you had gingivitis before becoming pregnant, your condition will likely be aggravated; untreated gingivitis can lead to a more serious problem -- periodontal disease. Swollen gums that become irritated can also lead to pregnancy tumors, benign growths that will usually shrink and disappear without treatment. However, if the tumor causes discomfort or interferes with chewing or brushing, the dentist may suggest removing it.
If you experience dental emergencies causing pain, you can be treated at any time; however, consult your doctor if anesthesia is required or a medication is prescribed to you. Avoid X-rays during pregnancy, unless they are critical to emergency treatment.
It is recommended to schedule elective procedures after your baby's birth. While you're expecting, have great expectations for maintaining good oral health. By doing so, you'll keep your beautiful smile and share it with your baby!
By Brian J. Gray, DDS, MAGD, FICO