Posts for category: Dental Procedures
One of the best ways to cover up teeth that have undergone restorative procedures is using crowns. You dentists in Saint Louis, MO, Dr. Joseph Zeigler and Dr. Nina Zeigler, are more than happy to tell you more about crowns and their benefits.
More About Crowns
Crowns are cap-like porcelain dental restorations. Your Saint Louis dentist takes an impression of your teeth and sends them to a lab where custom crowns are made just for you. In the meantime though, you're given a temporary crown.
During restorative procedures, such as root canals, a significant amount of natural tooth is removed. This leaves the tooth susceptible to breakage, which is why a dental crown is placed over the tooth. The dental crown reinforces the tooth and allows it to withstand various degrees of pressure, meaning you can enjoy eating without the worry of ruining your tooth.
Here are some other procedures that use dental crowns:
- Attaching bridges
- Covering an existing filling that may be dislocated
- Covering stained or discolored teeth
- Covering dental implants
Taking Care of Your Crowns
- Dental hygiene is crucial. You need to brush twice a day, at least, and floss before bed. Make sure to give special attention to the area around your dental crown by holding your brush at a 40-degree angle to get hard-to-reach areas.
- Bruxism, when someone grinds their teeth, can reduce how long your crowns last as well. So make sure you find a solution for it with your dentist, like getting a mouth guard or splints.
- Diet contributes to crowns longevity. Crowns can last a long time, so be sure to avoid biting into ice, eating, or drinking, sugary foods and drinks, like soda and candy.
For more information on dental crowns and what they can do for you, contact Drs. Joseph and Nina Zeigler in Saint Louis, MO, as soon as possible, by calling (314) 872-7590.
Placing a dental implant within the jawbone requires a surgical procedure. For most people it’s a relatively minor affair, but for some with certain health conditions it might be otherwise. Because of their condition they might have an increased risk for a bacterial infection afterward that could interfere with the implant’s integration with the bone and lead to possible failure.
To lower this risk, dentists for many years have routinely prescribed an antibiotic for patients considered at high-risk for infection to take before their implant surgery. But there’s been a lively debate among health practitioners about the true necessity for this practice and whether it’s worth the possible side effects that can accompany taking antibiotics.
While the practice still continues, current guidelines now recommend it for fewer health conditions. The American Dental Association (ADA) together with the American Heart Association (AHA) now recommend antibiotics only for surgical patients who have prosthetic heart valves, a history of infective endocarditis, a heart transplant or certain congenital heart conditions.
But patients with prosthetic joint replacements, who were once included in the recommendation for pre-surgical antibiotics, are no longer in that category. Even so, some orthopedic surgeons continue to recommend it for their joint replacement patients out of concern that a post-surgical infection could adversely affect their replaced joints.
But while these areas of disagreement about pre-surgical antibiotics still continue, a consensus may be emerging about a possible “sweet spot” in administering the therapy. Evidence from recent studies indicates just a small dose of antibiotics administered an hour before surgery may be sufficient to reduce the risk of infection-related implant failure with only minimal risk of side effects from the drug.
Because pre-surgical antibiotic therapy can be a complicated matter, it’s best that you discuss with both the physician caring for your health condition and your dentist about whether you should undergo this option to reduce the infection risk with your own implant surgery. Still, if all the factors surrounding your health indicate it, this antibiotic therapy might help you avoid losing an implant to infection.
If you would like more information on antibiotics before implant surgery, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Implants & Antibiotics: Lowering Risk of Implant Failure.”
Sometimes it seems that appearances count for everything—especially in Hollywood. But just recently, Lonnie Chaviz, the 10-year-old actor who plays young Randall on the hit TV show This Is Us, delivered a powerful message about accepting differences in body image. And the whole issue was triggered by negative social media comments about his smile.
Lonnie has a noticeable diastema—that is, a gap between his two front teeth; this condition is commonly seen in children, but is less common in adults. There are plenty of celebrities who aren’t bothered by the excess space between their front teeth, such as Michael Strahan, Lauren Hutton and Vanessa Paradis. However, there are also many people who choose to close the gap for cosmetic or functional reasons.
Unfortunately, Lonnie had been on the receiving end of unkind comments about the appearance of his smile. But instead of getting angry, the young actor posted a thoughtful reply via Instagram video, in which he said: “I could get my gap fixed. Braces can fix this, but like, can you fix your heart, though?”
Lonnie is raising an important point: Making fun of how someone looks shows a terrible lack of compassion. Besides, each person’s smile is uniquely their own, and getting it “fixed” is a matter of personal choice. It’s true that in most circumstances, if the gap between the front teeth doesn’t shrink as you age and you decide you want to close it, orthodontic appliances like braces can do the job. Sometimes, a too-big gap can make it more difficult to eat and to pronounce some words. In other situations, it’s simply a question of aesthetics—some like it; others would prefer to live without it.
There’s a flip side to this issue as well. When teeth need to be replaced, many people opt to have their smile restored just the way it was, rather than in some “ideal” manner. That could mean that their dentures are specially fabricated with a space between the front teeth, or the crowns of their dental implants are spaced farther apart than they normally would be. For these folks, the “imperfection” is so much a part of their unique identity that changing it just seems wrong.
So if you’re satisfied with the way your smile looks, all you need to do is keep up with daily brushing and flossing, and come in for regular checkups and cleanings to keep it healthy and bright. If you’re unsatisfied, ask us how we could help make it better. And if you need tooth replacement, be sure to talk to us about all of your options—teeth that are regular and “Hollywood white;” teeth that are natural-looking, with minor variations in color and spacing; and teeth that look just like the smile you’ve always had.
Because when it comes to your smile, we couldn’t agree more with what Lonnie Chaviz said at the end of his video: “Be who you want to be. Do what you want to do. Do you. Be you. Believe in yourself.”
If you have questions about cosmetic dentistry, please contact our office or schedule a consultation. You can read more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Beautiful Smiles by Design” and “The Magic of Orthodontics.”
Tooth decay can wreak more havoc than just producing cavities. It can work its way into the innermost parts of the tooth — the pulp and tiny passageways called root canals that lead to the tooth's connection with the bone.
If that happens, you'll need more than “drilling and filling.” Without intervention, your tooth could be lost. That intervention is a root canal treatment, a procedure that removes the infection from within the tooth and preserves it from re-infection.
You've probably heard the old belief that root canal treatments are painful. With modern anesthetic techniques to deaden pain, that's not true. In fact, root canal treatments stop the pain caused by infected nerves within the pulp and root canals. More importantly, it saves your tooth.
Root canals can be performed by a general dentist. More extensive decay or complex root canal networks may require the services of an endodontist, a dentist who specializes in root canal anatomy and treatments. Endodontists have advanced techniques and equipment to handle even the most difficult case.
Regardless of who performs it, the basic procedure is the same, as is the goal: to completely remove all diseased tissue within the tooth and seal it with a special filling to prevent re-infection. To access the diseased pulp, we first drill an access hole, usually in the biting surface of a back tooth or the back of a front tooth. We then use specialized instruments to remove the infected tissue and flush out the space with antibacterial solutions.
We then insert a filling called gutta percha into the empty pulp chamber and root canals, seal off the filling with adhesive cement, and close the access hole with filling. These fillings and sealants prevent bacteria from reentering the tooth. For added protection against infection and fracturing, we also recommend placing a full-coverage dental crown. This also enhances the appearance of the tooth, which must be modified during the root canal procedure.
The end result: your once endangered tooth has been preserved for hopefully many years to come. So if we recommend you undergo a root canal treatment, don't wait — the tooth you save may be your own.
Get a Whiter Smile
Think over-the-counter teeth whitening products are giving you the whitest smile you can get? Think again. Professional teeth whitening will give you the best whitening results. The products dentists use to whiten your teeth will be more powerful than what you can purchase over-the-counter. Dr. Joseph Zeigler and Dr. Nina Zeigler are some of the finest dentists in St. Louis, MO. They offer professional solutions for patients who want a brighter smile.
Causes of Dental Stains
Poor oral hygiene, excessive fluoride use, and certain medications can stain your teeth. Other factors that can cause tooth discoloration include dark-colored beverages, tobacco use and certain foods. Several diseases that affect tooth enamel and dentin can also cause tooth discoloration.
In-office teeth whitening is a revolutionary procedure that uses a strong whitening agent and light source to speed up the whitening process. In-office teeth whitening can lighten your teeth by up to eight shades. Results from the treatment are immediate, and because a dentist is involved, the process is completely safe.
Dispensed by licensed dentists, professional at-home teeth whitening kits consist of placing a bleaching gel in a dental tray that has been custom-fitted for your mouth by a dental practitioner. Some dental trays are worn for an hour, others through the night. Professional at-home whitening kits produce fantastic results in 1 to 2 weeks of use.
Benefits of a White Smile
sional teeth whitening can whiten your smile, enhance your appearance, and improve the quality of your life. People with sparkling, white smiles are often perceived as being healthier and more intelligent, and that first impression can go a long way. A white smile can also boost your self-confidence, which carries into the many different aspects of your life.
Teeth Whitening Consultation
If you have healthy gums and teeth, you may be a candidate for professional teeth whitening. Only your dentist can determine if professional teeth whitening is suitable for you after performing an exam to ensure proper health. Patients with tooth decay or gum disease are poor candidates for teeth whitening. These issues need to be addressed before seeking cosmetic treatments.
Are you ready to upgrade your smile? Call our dental office at 314-872-7590 today to schedule an appointment in St. Louis, MO. Professional teeth whitening will do you and your smile a world of good!