Brighton Dentist Discusses the Importance of Mouthguards
May 6th 2013
Mouthguards play an important role in protecting teeth and the mouth during a collision. In contact sports like football, hockey, and rugby, mouthguards are vital. However, they may be just as important in other sports that aren’t known as contact sports but involve frequent contact nonetheless, such as basketball and soccer. Below, your Brighton dentist, Dr. Thomas Villani, explains how wearing a mouthguard can prevent a dental emergency.
Mouthguards and Your Teeth
During a collision, people lose control of their bodies. The unexpected force jars them, and they do things they are unable to prevent. Often, when a violent collision occurs, the head will snap forward, causing the upper and lower jaws to snap shut. Without a mouthguard, there is nothing to absorb the blow but the teeth themselves, and such a powerful impact is capable of causing serious damage to the teeth and mouth. Teeth may crack, chip, or break, and if they don’t come together perfectly, a severely bitten tongue or lip may occur. However, with a mouthguard to absorb the shock, the lips, tongue, and teeth are all protected, and the blow is cushioned.
Reacting to Dental Emergencies
If you or a loved one does experience a dental emergency, there are some steps you can take before you arrive for treatment from your Brighton emergency dentist, Dr. Villani.
- If a tooth is cracked or broken, rinse with warm water to remove lingering bacteria from the mouth. With the tooth’s defenses compromised, bacteria have an easier time accessing the tooth’s pulp.
- If a tooth is knocked out, handle it by the crown and rinse it clean with water. Then replace the tooth in the empty socket or place it in a glass of milk.
Visit Your Brighton Emergency Dentist
In the event of an emergency, prompt dental care is imperative. If you or a loved one experiences dental trauma, contact your Brighton emergency dentist, Dr. Villani, by calling Brighton Family Dental Group at (617) 562-5210. We proudly serve patients from Watertown, Cambridge, Brookline, Newton, Brighton, and the 02135 area.
Brighton Dentist: Teeth Grinding Is Common in Young Children
April 30th 2013
Do you ever poke your head in your child’s room to check on your little one during the night? If you do, you may have noticed the development of a disturbing habit because 38 percent of children grind their teeth during the night. If you’ve witnessed this habit, the sight of the jaw sliding back and forth and the saw-like noises that result from these actions may have filled you with concern about your child’s teeth. But what would you say knowing that most teeth grinding (bruxism) in children does not require treatment? Your Brighton dentist, Dr. Thomas Villani, explains why below.
Bruxism in Children
About four out of every ten children develop a habit of grinding their teeth between the ages of three and six. Astonishingly, the habit tends to die off around age six before teeth are in any significant danger. Thus most children do not receive treatment for bruxism because the force generated is not a significant threat to their teeth or jaws.
When to Seek Care for Bruxism
In most cases, bruxism does not require treatment at a young age. However, it is still a good idea to know when to seek dental care for bruxism. In adults and younger teens, bruxism can damage teeth, resulting in cracks, chips, or breaks, and it can also cause a disorder in the temporomandibular joint (TMJ), the joint that connects the lower jaw to the skull. Thus any persistent sensitivity in teeth or soreness in the jaw shouldn’t be neglected at any age. If you notice any of these symptoms or if your child’s teeth grinding habit continues well past the age of six, contact your Brighton children’s dentist, Dr. Villani.
Treatment for Bruxism
In cases in which bruxism is a threat to teeth and the jaw, an oral appliance called a sleep guard can be worn to protect teeth from damage. Wearing a sleep guard can preserve teeth and lessen the stress placed on the jaw.
Schedule a Visit with Your Brighton Children’s Dentist
When was the last time your child attended a dental visit? If more than six months have passed, it’s time for a checkup. Contact your Brighton children’s dentist, Dr. Villani, today by calling Brighton Family Dental Group at (617) 562-5210. We proudly serve patients from Watertown, Cambridge, Brookline, Newton, Brighton, and the 02135 area.
Brighton Dentist: Dental Implants Can Restore Your Jawbone
April 29th 2013
When people think about a lost tooth, they tend to focus on how the loss affects day-to-day function and cosmetic appeal. However, few people realize that a lost tooth can result in bone density loss in the jawbone. Your Brighton dentist, Dr. Thomas Villani, explains how a lost tooth contributes to jawbone density loss and how dental implants can restore proper bone density.
Lost Teeth and Jawbone Density
When a tooth falls out, its root leaves the jawbone. With no root in the jawbone, the body registers that the tooth has fallen out and that the area it previously occupied is barren. Accordingly, the body stops sending nutrients to the area so as not to waste them. Unfortunately, by stopping nutrient flow, the jawbone in the area may begin to suffer from malnutrition, resulting in a decrease in density.
Another contributing factor to density loss is the lack of stimulation that bone cells receive once a tooth has fallen out. Bone cells thrive on the pressures of chewing and biting which are transmitted to the jawbone by teeth. However, when tooth falls out, those forces are no longer transferred, meaning that bone cells in the area of the lost tooth no longer receive stimulation. Bone density suffers accordingly.
Dental Implants and the Jawbone
What sets dental implants apart from other restorative dentistry treatments is the titanium post that is inserted into the jawbone. This post fuses with the bone and provides a solid foundation for the prosthetic tooth. Yet it does significantly more than that. The presence of the post in the jawbone, tells the body that a tooth once again resides in the previously vacated area, prompting the restoration of nutrition. The implant is also able to transmit the forces of biting and chewing to bone cells because of the post’s presence in the jawbone. With nutrition restored and the bone cells receiving stimulating forces, bone density begins to increase.
Dental Implants from Your Brighton Dentist
Are you missing a tooth or teeth? Do you want a restoration that looks and feels natural? Contact your Brighton implant dentist, Dr. Villani, to discuss how dental implants can restore your smile by calling Brighton Family Dental Group at (617) 562-5210. We proudly serve patients from Watertown, Cambridge, Brookline, Newton, Brighton, and the 02135 area.
Brighton Dentist Shares Three Benefits of Implant-Retained Dentures
April 16th 2013
Do your dentures make you self-conscious? Do you have a difficult time speaking and eating? Ill-fitting dentures can take the enjoyment out of your life and lower your self-esteem. It’s difficult to smile when even the simplest tasks present a challenge and embarrassment lurks around every corner. Thankfully, there is a solution: implant-retained dentures. With the aid of dental implants from your Brighton dentist, Dr. Thomas Villani, your dentures need never slip again.
Three Perks of Implant-Retained Dentures
- A natural feel. Your natural teeth are anchored into your jawbone via each tooth’s root. Unfortunately, traditional dentures are not supported by the jaw in this way. Instead, they rely on the gums and suction to keep them in place. However, if the dentures do not fit properly, they are prone to sliding around the mouth, causing embarrassment and irritation. With dental implants to support dentures, however, your dentures can have a more natural feel. The dental implants are inserted into the jaw, where they fuse with the jawbone. Once firmly in position, they act as anchors for the prosthetic teeth, meaning that the jaw once again supports teeth.
- Improved speech. Ill-fitting dentures can affect the speech of the people who wear them. If the dentures slip and slide, the facial muscles will work to keep them in position, and while these muscles are somewhat effective in keeping the dentures in place, it is at the expense of speech. Mumbling and slurring words is very typical for people wearing ill-fitting dentures. However, with the added stability provided by dental implants, the dentures will no longer be at risk of slipping, allowing patients to speak clearly and audibly.
- More dining options. Implant-retained dentures are very stable, and nowhere is that stability clearer than in the expanded menu available to patients with implant-retained dentures. Apples and steak are perfectly plausible.
Implant-Retained Dentures from Your Brighton Dentist
Are you ready to end your daily struggle with dentures? Your Brighton dentist, Dr. Villani, can help. Call Brighton Family Dental Group at (617) 562-5210 to schedule an appointment or a consultation to discuss how dental implants can stabilize your dentures. We proudly serve patients from Watertown, Cambridge, Brookline, Newton, Brighton, and the 02135 area.
Brighton Dentist: Encourage Your Child to Brush with a Tooth Brushing Chart
April 9th 2013
“Brush your teeth.”
(In a more serious tone) “Brush your teeth.”
(Tinged with frustration) “Brush your teeth.”
That one-word response can make you want to rip your hair out and give up. Unfortunately, giving up will put your child’s mouth at risk. In the absence of regular brushing, bacteria are free to attack teeth and cause problems like tooth decay. But when children become stubborn, how can you get them to brush their teeth without a struggle? Your Brighton dentist, Dr. Thomas Villani, shares a useful strategy below.
Incorporating a Brushing Chart
A tooth brushing chart is a useful little tool for keeping track of a child’s brushing progress. Featuring morning and evening boxes for each day of several weeks, brushing charts can provide some motivation for reluctant brushers. The trick is to use the chart to make a challenge. Offer your child a prize if he or she can successfully complete the chart. Make the prize something good so that motivation is high. With any luck, you will win a prize too when your child develops a tooth brushing habit.
Accessing a Free Tooth Brushing Chart
There are many free brushing charts online, but if you need a nudge in the right direction, your Brighton kids’ dentist, Dr. Villani, recommends trying this website: http://www.loveyourteeth.net/. When you visit the site, you will be asked for your child’s name. This information is used only to customize the chart with your son or daughter’s name at the top. Once you enter your child’s name, a printable version of the chart will load, and you will be able to print it and make your challenge.
Schedule a Visit with Your Brighton Kids’ Dentist
In addition to proper homecare, regular dental visits can help maintain your child’s oral health. If more than six months have passed since your child’s last dental visit, schedule an appointment with your Brighton kids’ dentist, Dr. Villani, today by calling Brighton Family Dental Group at (617) 562-5210. We proudly serve patients from Watertown, Cambridge, Brookline, Newton, Brighton, and the 02135 area.
Brighton Family Dental Group is your home for family dental care. Dr. Villani, Dr. Kondrat, and our team of dental professionals look forward to partnering with you for a lifetime of healthy smiles. If you live in Brighton, Watertown, Cambridge, Brookline, or Newton, call us today at (617) 562-5210 to schedule appointments for you and the people you love most.