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Posts for: April, 2017

By Beasley Cosmetic & General Dentistry
April 20, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: invisalign   orthodontics   braces  

Would you like straighter teeth but aren't sure if Invisalign is a good choice for you? Dr. R. Brad Beasley of Beasley Family & Implant invisalignDentistry in Athens, AL and serving Huntsville, AL, discusses the orthodontic issues Invisalign treats and shares some information on this popular alternative to braces.

Invisalign is just as effective as traditional braces

Invisalign treats all of the same problems that metal, ceramic or lingual braces do. Although no wires are required, the clear brace system works as well as traditional braces if you have mild to moderate orthodontic problems. If your issues are severe, Dr. Beasley may recommend metal braces.
Invisalign is a good choice if you're concerned about:

  • Crowding: Invisalign gradually shifts your teeth to alleviate crowding by utilizing a series of clear, removable aligners. Eat set of aligners in the series is designed to accomplish a specific straightening goal and is worn for two weeks.
  • Too Much Space: Invisalign slowly closes gaps between your teeth that can affect your appearance and your bite.
  • Overbites and Underbites: Both of these common bite issues respond well to Invisalign treatment
  • Open Bites and Crossbites: Failing to treat open or crossbites can wear down the enamel on your teeth, increase stress on your jaw and facial muscles and make it difficult to chew. At the end of your Invisalign treatment, your teeth will fit together perfectly.

Invisalign is an easy care option

There are a lot of rules when you wear traditional braces. You'll need to buy special flossing tools and follow a strict after-meal flossing regimen to ensure that food doesn't stick to your wires. You'll also have to avoid any food that is hard or sticky and wear mouthguards made just for people who wear braces when you play sports.

Most people who choose Invisalign in the Huntsville area do so because they want to improve their smiles but don't want to call attention to the fact that they're undergoing orthodontic treatment. The brace system offers a few other important benefits. Without wires and brackets, there's nothing to trap food particles in your teeth. Every time you eat, you'll take out your aligners, put them in their case, then rinse them and reinsert them at the end of the meal. Oral hygiene is equally easy, since you'll also remove the aligners when you brush and floss.

Would you like to find out if Invisalign is a good option for you? Call Huntsville, AL, dentist, Dr. Beasley of Beasley Family & Implant Dentistry in Athens, AL and serving Huntsville, AL, to schedule an appointment.


LookatYourOptionsforSavingaToothFirstBeforeReplacingit

It's no exaggeration — dental implants have revolutionized teeth replacement. Life-like and durable, implants are the closest thing in design and function to a natural tooth.

In fact, there's only one thing better than a dental implant — a real tooth. For function and long-term oral health, you can't beat what nature provided you in the first place. So before you finally decide to remove and replace that problem tooth, consider these other options for saving it.

Root canal therapy. Tooth decay can do more than cause cavities — it can work its way into the pulp, the innermost layer of a tooth. If it isn't stopped here, it could continue on to the roots and put the tooth in real danger of loss. A root canal treatment removes the infection from the pulp and root canals and replaces the space with a filling. A life-like crown is then bonded or cemented to the tooth to protect it from further infection.

Aggressive treatment for periodontal (gum) disease. This other dental disease is just as damaging as tooth decay. Caused by bacterial plaque, the gums around a tooth become infected and inflamed. As it moves deeper into the tissues and inflammation progresses, it can affect supporting bone causing it to dissolve. To prevent this potential bone loss, it's important to seek out and remove hidden pockets of plaque. This may require surgery to access the roots for plaque and calculus (tartar) removal, but it's well worth it to preserve the tooth.

Bone grafting. As mentioned before, gum disease can ultimately lead to bone loss. But even when bone loss has occurred (a substantial threat to a tooth's survival) we may be able to reverse it with bone grafting techniques. During this procedure we insert grafting material at the loss site along with substances that stimulate growth. The graft serves as a scaffold for new bone cells to grow upon. Over time the bone volume increases and helps stabilize a weak tooth.

Of course, your best option is to avoid dental disease in the first place with daily brushing and flossing and regular dental visits for cleanings and checkups. That and treating dental disease in its earliest stages will help ensure you'll have the best teeth possible — your own.

If you would like more information on options for treating diseased teeth, 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 “Save a Tooth or Get an Implant?


By Beasley Cosmetic & General Dentistry
April 09, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures
DontBreakItLikeBeckham

During his former career as a professional footballer (that's a soccer star to U.S. sports fans) David Beckham was known for his skill at “bending” a soccer ball. His ability to make the ball curve in mid-flight — to avoid a defender or score a goal — led scores of kids to try to “bend it like Beckham.” But just recently, while enjoying a vacation in Canada with his family, “Becks” tried snowboarding for the first time — and in the process, broke one of his front teeth.

Some fans worried that the missing tooth could be a “red card” for Beckham's current modeling career… but fortunately, he headed straight to the dental office as soon as he arrived back in England. Exactly what kind of treatment is needed for a broken tooth? It all depends where the break is and how badly the tooth is damaged.

For a minor crack or chip, cosmetic bonding may offer a quick and effective solution. In this procedure, a composite resin, in a color custom-made to match the tooth, is applied in liquid form and cured (hardened) with a special light. Several layers of bonding material can be applied to re-construct a larger area of missing tooth, and chips that have been saved can sometimes be reattached as well.

When more tooth structure is missing, dental veneers may be the preferred restorative option. Veneers are wafer-thin shells that are bonded to the front surface of the teeth. They can not only correct small chips or cracks, but can also improve the color, spacing, and shape of your teeth.

But if the damage exposes the soft inner pulp of the tooth, root canal treatment will be needed to save the tooth. In this procedure, the inflamed or infected pulp tissue is removed and the tooth sealed against re-infection; if a root canal is not done when needed, the tooth will have an increased risk for extraction in the future. Following a root canal, a tooth is often restored with a crown (cap), which can look good and function well for many years.

Sometimes, a tooth may be knocked completely out of its socket; or, a severely damaged tooth may need to be extracted (removed). In either situation, the best option for restoration is a dental implant. Here, a tiny screw-like device made of titanium metal is inserted into the jaw bone in a minor surgical procedure. Over time, it fuses with the living bone to form a solid anchorage. A lifelike crown is attached, which provides aesthetic appeal and full function for the replacement tooth.

So how's Beckham holding up? According to sources, “David is a trooper and didn't make a fuss. He took it all in his stride." Maybe next time he hits the slopes, he'll heed the advice of dental experts and wear a custom-made mouthguard…

If you have questions about restoring damaged teeth, please contact our office to schedule a consultation. You can read more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Trauma and Nerve Damage to Teeth” and “Children's Dental Concerns and Injuries.”