Close to 37,000 Americans will be diagnosed with oral or pharyngeal cancer this year. It will cause over 8,000 deaths, killing roughly 1 person per hour, 24 hours per day. Of those 36,000 newly diagnosed individuals, only slightly more than half will be alive in 5 years. (Approximately 57%) This is a number which has not significantly improved in decades. The death rate for oral cancer is higher than that of cancers which we hear about routinely. Why is the death rate so high? Sadly, the answer is simple – because it is not diagnosed or discovered until it is too late.
At Creative Smiles, all of our patients receive routine oral cancer screenings. We consider it one of the most important things we do.
Periodontal Disease is an infection of the tissues that support your teeth. The American Association of Periodontics estimates that 3 out of 4 Americans suffer from some form of gum disease. Often people have no noticeable symptoms whatsoever, and therefore their gum disease goes untreated – they have no pain, and don’t realize there is anything wrong. With increasingly more research indicating that gum disease may be linked to several other diseases, including diabetes, heart disease and certain forms of cancer, maintaining healthy teeth and gums has become more important than ever.
Here at Creative Smiles, we perform a comprehensive assessment of your periodontal health. Our doctors and hygienists work as a team to educate our patients about its causes and prevention, deliver treatment, and when necessary we will make referrals to a trusted specialist.
If you have TMJ Syndrome, headaches or migraine pain, you may be a candidate for Botox treatment. Botox injected into the affected head and neck muscles can eliminate or reduce facial pain. You will also have improved facial esthetics. Given every few months, these injections may help you lose the habit of clenching and grinding. Please call for details.
Most people cringe when they hear the term “root canal.” At Creative Smiles, our patients sit up when the procedure is over and say, “That’s it?” They had heard all of the stories, and when their procedure was completed in a relaxed and painless manner they are relieved and happy. A root canal is not a painful procedure – rather, it is the relief of pain, a toothache no more. It is certainly nothing to cringe about!
At Creative Smiles Dental Group, we only place composite or “tooth colored” fillings. We made the choice years ago to no longer place silver amalgam fillings. Although all the research shows that silver amalgam fillings are safe we no longer felt comfortable with the material for a variety of other reasons.
Silver fillings are retained in a tooth mechanically, so when preparing the tooth for such a filling often times a significant amount of otherwise healthy tooth structure must be removed to prepare the shape necessary to retain the filling in the tooth. Preparing this shape in the tooth also undermines the tooth structure and can result in a fracture in the tooth later down the road, which we see with relative frequency.
Composite or tooth colored fillings, on the other hand are bonded to the tooth. This means we can prepare any shape in the tooth without concern for retention. It is much more conservative as we can now remove the decayed tooth structure only and not have to prepare away healthy tooth structure to hold the filling in. They are also more cosmetically attractive and do not leach stains into the tooth over time. No more black teeth!!!
Many people are embarrassed about their smiles and believe they only have a few options – do nothing, wear braces for 2-3 years, or have the expensive full mouth makeover. Well, there is another option: PowerProx Six Month Braces. By only moving the teeth that are visible in your smile, it is possible to have straight teeth in about 6 months. Now, not everyone is a candidate, but you might be surprised! For more information on this process, click on the following link:
Dentistry has really come a long way! It used to be that if you lost a tooth we either had to involve the teeth on either side of the space you were left with (if you were lucky enough to have teeth there), or give you a removable denture. Now we have what is by far the greatest advancement in dentistry to date – the dental implant. Dental implants look and feel like your natural teeth – sometimes they are even better!
Battling with ill-fitting dentures? Implants can help! By placing several implants under your denture, you can have a rock solid fit. The dentures will not slide around or rub anymore.
As a reminder to anyone with an existing denture, don’t forget to come in once a year for your oral cancer screening.
Bruxism is the technical term for teeth grinding and clenching that causes facial pain. It is estimated that 1 in 3 people are bruxers. People unintentionally bite down too hard at inappropriate times, such as in their sleep. Bruxers may also may bite their fingernails, pencils and chew the inside of their cheek. Many people don’t realize they have the habit. Bruxism can cause many problems including sensitive teeth, cracked and broken teeth, severely worn teeth and headaches.
Many people experiencing restless sleep and chronic headaches have found relief from wearing a dental appliance. These appliances are FDA approved for the treatment of migraines and tension type headaches. In FDA trials, one of these devices, the NTI-ss (Nociceptive Trigeminal Inhibition — Tension Suppression System), 82% of patients reported 77% relief of symptoms, with NO medications!
We love delivering these devices to patients and having them tell us that they don’t know how they ever lived without it.
Cosmetic dentistry is a lot of things – the ones everyone knows about like veneers and crowns, but it can also be some simple bonding, orthodontics, replacing an old filling, or whitening your teeth. Think of it as anything that makes you feel better about your smile. Too many people are embarrassed to smile and never knew there was a solution, or that the solution could be easy or affordable. Why not ask? It might be easier than you think.