Will It Hurt to Get Fillings?

Your dentist just told you that you have a cavity and need to get it filled. If this is your first time getting a filling, you may not be sure what to expect. You might even be nervous that it will hurt. After all, a filling is a type of dental surgery.

If you just found out you need to get your first filling, don’t worry. We’ll explain what to expect every step of the way, including what — if any — discomfort you might experience.

7 Things You Should Know Before Your Dental Surgery

Has your dentist scheduled you for oral surgery and you don’t know what to expect? Dental surgery is very common, but it can be intimidating if you’ve never had it before. Don’t worry, we’ll walk you through it so you know exactly what to expect.

What Are Dental Crowns?

A crown may sound regal, but in reality it’s simply a tooth-shaped cap that is placed over an existing tooth. One of the most common reasons for installing a dental crown is to protect a tooth that has become weakened or damaged due to decay.

Other situations that might lead your dentist to recommend a crown include:

  • To restore a broken tooth, or one that is quite worn.
  • To help keep a dental bridge in place.
  • To fill gaps left by broken or damaged teeth.
  • To cover a tooth that is discolored or misshapen so that the tooth blends in more easily with surrounding teeth.
  • To protect an already weakened tooth from fracturing.
  • To cover a tooth where there isn’t much of the tooth structure left due to an especially large filling.
  • To cover a tooth that has had a root canal.

If a broken or damaged tooth is left as is, it might cause some of the remaining teeth to shift in your mouth. This could lead to a bad bite over time. Crowns can help prevent this by ensuring that teeth are uniformly sized and spaced.

What Are Crowns Made Of?

Crowns can be made from a variety of materials. Teeth that are located toward the front of the mouth and easily visible are often made from porcelain or ceramic. They can even be colored to match the rest of your teeth. Other crown options include:

  • Acrylic.
  • Gold.
  • Metal alloys.

While porcelain and ceramic crowns more closely resemble the look of natural teeth, crowns made from alloys or gold are actually stronger, and are typically recommended for back teeth that aren’t as visible.

Unlike dentures, a crown cannot be taken out and cleaned daily. It is cemented over an existing tooth and can only be removed by a dentist.

How Are Crowns Made?

The first step to creating a crown is for your dentist to remove the outer portion of the tooth so the crown will fit. Any decay is removed from your tooth. Next, your dentist will take an impression of the tooth to make an exact mold. That’s because crowns are not something you can get “off the rack.” Each crown is custom-made for the patient. If the crown is being crafted from porcelain, your dentist will also determine which color the crown needs to be in order to match your existing teeth.

Once the mold is ready, it’s sent to a dental lab for your crown to be created. In the meantime, your dentist will put a temporary crown on your tooth to help you get by until the permanent crown is ready. This usually takes about two weeks. Once the new crown is ready, your dentist will remove the temporary crown and cement the new, permanent crown into place.

How Long Can I Expect My Crown to Last?

With proper care, a crown can last a lifetime. However, they may sometimes come loose, or even fall out. Should that happen, call your dentist immediately to have the crown either reattached or replaced.

One way to help prolong the life of your crown is by practicing good oral hygiene. Make sure to brush and floss every day to keep gums and teeth healthy. You should also schedule regular dental checkups and cleanings with your dentist and dental hygienist.  

If you think you may need a crown, or simply need to schedule a cleaning, call Pine Tree Dental Care at 207-781-4216 to set up an appointment today!

Why Do I Need My Wisdom Teeth Removed?

We get it, surgery is not something most people look forward to. This is why the removal of seemingly healthy wisdom teeth can be difficult for many people to understand. After all, if a patient isn’t experiencing any issues with their teeth, so why would they need surgery to remove them? We’ll explain why seemingly healthy teeth might need to be removed, and what can happen if you decide against wisdom teeth removal.

My Wisdom Teeth Feel Fine, Why Do You Want to Take Them Out?

When it comes to teeth, there is often more going on than meets the eye. Even if they feel OK, sometimes wisdom teeth could be impacted. This means the teeth can’t break through from your jaw into your mouth. This could be because they are growing at an angle, or your mouth could simply be too small to make room for your incoming wisdom teeth. In cases like this, wisdom teeth can cause damage to the adjoining teeth by rubbing up against them.

Another common reason for your dentist to recommend removing your wisdom teeth is to prevent potential issues such as:

  • Misaligned bite.
  • Sinus issues.
  • Inflamed gums.
  • Cavities

While it may not seem to make sense to remove healthy molars, in many cases it can prevent problems from developing down the road.

Why Not Just Wait and See if I Have a Problem with My Wisdom Teeth First?

Dentists often recommend removing wisdom teeth early on as a preventive measure because as you get older, the bones in your mouth get harder – making it more difficult to remove them later in life.

Another pro to removing wisdom teeth when a patient is younger is because the roots of the teeth are not fully developed yet, and the bone around the teeth is less dense. It’s also easier for younger people to heal and recover from the surgery.

That’s not to say you can’t have your wisdom teeth removed at a later age. However, you will be facing a higher risk for certain potential side effects, including:

  • Fractured teeth.
  • Heavy bleeding.
  • Numbness.
  • Minor loss of movement in the jaw.

In some serious cases, older patients may even develop cysts, which can cause permanent damage to teeth, nerves and bones.

Not all wisdom teeth need to be removed. But if there’s a chance that your wisdom teeth may cause problems, it’s easier to have them taken out when you’re younger. If you would like to have your wisdom teeth evaluated, call us at 207-781-4216 to set up your appointment at Pine Tree Dental Care!

These Aren’t Your Grandpa’s Dentures

Imagine having to deal with ill-fitting dentures all the time. It’s miserable.

That’s why it’s so important to get high-quality dentures that fit well. This is where we come in! We can help you find dentures that will change your life.

The goal of the denture-fitting process is to make sure that you can talk and eat just like you would with your old teeth, and eventually get to the point where you forget that you even have dentures. Bottom line, you shouldn’t feel stuck because of bad teeth or dentures that are causing your mouth to hurt.

Dentures aren’t one-size-fits-all anymore. Complete dentures fit over your gums and cover the roof of your mouth, with the bottom part shaped like a ‘u’ wrapping around your tongue.

Partial dentures connect to your natural teeth using metal framework instead of covering your gums and the roof of your mouth.

We examine your mouth and pick the best type of denture for you. We then custom fit the dentures to the shape of your mouth to ensure that they are comfortable and useable. It’s important to know that your mouth has to get used to talking and eating with the dentures in, and it’s normal for the mouth to take a little while to adapt. Once your mouth adapts, you still may feel different, but the dentures will be much more comfortable and natural looking compared to the dentures that your grandparents wore.

Whether you aren’t sure if you need dentures or want to explore what option will work best for you, our dental care experts at Pine Tree Dental can help. Call our office at 207-781-4216 to make an appointment today. We look forward to helping you find the best looking and most comfortable dentures possible!

What to Expect from a Tooth Extraction

If you’re undergoing a tooth extraction, you most likely have a problem with your tooth or gums that is causing discomfort. It sounds like a scary procedure, but the relief patients feel afterward is well worth it.

Here’s what to expect during the tooth extraction process.

First of all, it’s important to remember that tooth extractions are very common and dentists perform this procedure all the time. The procedure starts with a dentist administering an anesthetic to numb the area where your tooth will be pulled. Before the procedure, your dentist will test your numbness and ensure that you are not in pain.

The actual tooth extraction is fairly simple. If your tooth is impacted, the dentist will cut away gum and bone tissue that cover the tooth and then, using forceps, grasp your tooth and gently rock it back and forth to loosen it from the jaw bone and ligaments that hold it in place. Sometimes, a hard-to-extract tooth must be removed in pieces. After the extraction, a blood clot usually fills the gap left by the tooth. To make sure this doesn’t become a problem, a gauze will be inserted to prevent excessive bleeding. Oftentimes, stitches will be used to patch the gap left.

In the case of wisdom teeth removal, the exact steps of the procedure will differ based on how many wisdom teeth are being removed at once and whether the teeth are impacted. Wisdom teeth removal is an extremely safe procedure that most people will have to have at some point in their lives.

If you’re worried about an impending tooth extraction or have questions, feel free to call us at 207-781-4216. As we said, tooth extractions are nothing to be stressed out about!

How to Choose the Right Dentist

If you are moving to a new area, or moving on from your previous dentist, there are some things you should consider before picking a new dentist. It is important to pick a dentist before you have a dental emergency. It takes time and research to find the best fit for you and your teeth!

What You Need to Know Before Getting Braces

As much as you probably don’t want them, braces are now a part of your future. Here are some things that you need to know before getting braces.

Straight Teeth Aren’t the Only Goal:

Coming in, you may think your braces will be put in place to fix crooked teeth. Although this is often true, it isn’t necessarily the only objective of your braces. In your appointment with your orthodontist, she’ll examine many parts of your mouth for different issues. Bleeding gums and loose or jagged teeth are some of the problems that your orthodontist is looking for..

Tips for Clean Teeth During a Busy Summer

Summer is here and so are the fun outdoor activities. You are out at the beach, barbecues, sports games, camping, etc. When you are out and about, you don’t always have time to brush your teeth. We know that. Yet, you still want to keep your teeth white and clean. Here are some tips to keeping your teeth fresh and clean during the summer fun.

Tips & Tricks to Keeping Your Teeth White Between Cleanings

Professionals recommend a visit to the dentist’s office twice a year for checkups and teeth cleanings. Sometimes that can be hard with a busy schedule, but it is strongly suggested for the overall health of your mouth.

There is a substantial amount of time that passes between your cleanings. It is crucial to brush and floss your teeth regularly between checkups to maintain a healthy mouth! Here are some tips to help keep your teeth healthy in between your yearly check-ups!