Posts for: March, 2017

By Clark J Wright, DMD, PA
March 18, 2017
Category: Oral Health

Dental implants to replace teeth are a popular choice as much for their durability as their life-likeness. Most implants last for decades, which can result in lower long-term maintenance costs than other replacement options.

But to achieve this longevity, you must take care of your implants. You should brush and floss them daily right along with your remaining natural teeth — and continue regular semi-annual dental visits for cleanings and checkups.

You may be wondering, though: if they're made of inorganic materials, why worry with brushing them? It's true that bacterial plaque, the thin film of food particles most responsible for dental disease, doesn't affect them.

Your implants, though, don't exist in a bubble: they're imbedded in real bone, surrounded by real gum tissue and placed next to real teeth. All these other living tissues are susceptible to infection caused by plaque, even from plaque on non-organic implants.

The bone and tissues around an implant can even have a higher susceptibility to infection. This is because an implant's attachment in the jaw differs from that of natural teeth. An implant is imbedded directly into the bone; a natural tooth, on the other hand, maintains its hold through an elastic gum tissue between it and the bone called the periodontal ligament. Tiny fibers from the ligament attach to the tooth on one side and to the bone on the other.

Besides holding the tooth in place, the ligament also contains blood vessels that supply the tooth and surrounding tissues not only with nutrients but also antibodies that help fight infection. Due to the absence of a ligament connection, an implant doesn't enjoy the same level of protection from infection.  It's much easier for tissues and teeth around an implant to become infected, and harder to stop it.

That's why prevention through daily hygiene is so important. So, be sure to brush and floss all your teeth — including implants — every day, and keep up your regular dental visits. And at the first sign of a possible infection — swollen, red or bleeding gums — see us as soon as possible for an examination.

Consider your implants a long-term investment in both your smile and dental health. Taking care of them will pay dividends for many years to come.

If you would like more information on taking care of your dental implants, 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 “Dental Implant Maintenance.”

By Clark J Wright, DMD, PA
March 06, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: cosmetic dentistry  

How your dentist in Venice can help you look greatcosmetic dentistry

Do you find yourself smiling less? Are you embarrassed by your smile? Do you wish you could improve your smile? If you answered yes to these questions, it’s time to give yourself a smile you love. Thanks to modern cosmetic dental procedures, you can have a more beautiful smile than you ever thought possible. Dr. Clark Wright in Venice, FL, wants to share what cosmetic dentistry can do for you.

Cosmetic dentistry combines both the artistic talents of your dentist with the science of dental materials to give you a smile that is uniquely yours. Dr. Wright offers a full range of cosmetic procedures guaranteed to help give you your best smile. You can choose from:

Dental veneers which are placed over the front surfaces of teeth; they are created out of pure porcelain that reflects light just like your natural teeth. Veneers are a great choice to hide issues like these:

  • Age-related excessive tooth wear
  • Trauma-related chipped or cracked teeth
  • Medication or lifestyle related discolored or stained teeth
  • Genetically-related defects or poor tooth alignment

Dental bonding using composite, a liquid resin material that can be sculpted and shaped to hide many unsightly tooth issues including:

  • Small chips or cracks
  • Closing small gaps between teeth
  • Cosmetically altering the color, shape and alignment of teeth

Dental implants if you are missing a single tooth or multiple teeth, or to support a denture; they are just like your natural teeth in many ways. Dental implants don’t move, you clean them by simple brushing and flossing, and with proper care, they can last a lifetime. They also help to preserve the bone in your jaw, helping you maintain your natural youthful facial contours.

Isn’t it time to give yourself a smile you love? Go ahead treat yourself to a great new smile. Your smile is your gift to the world, so show it off! Get started on your new smile by calling Dr. Wright in Venice, FL. Call today!

By Clark J Wright, DMD, PA
March 03, 2017
Category: Oral Health

When is the best time to floss your teeth: Morning? Bedtime? How about: whenever and wherever the moment feels right?

For Cam Newton, award-winning NFL quarterback for the Carolina Panthers, the answer is clearly the latter. During the third quarter of the 2016 season-opener between his team and the Denver Broncos, TV cameras focused on Newton as he sat on the bench. The 2015 MVP was clearly seen stretching a string of dental floss between his index fingers and taking care of some dental hygiene business… and thereby creating a minor storm on the internet.

Inappropriate? We don't think so. As dentists, we're always happy when someone comes along to remind people how important it is to floss. And when that person has a million-dollar smile like Cam Newton's — so much the better.

Of course, there has been a lot of discussion lately about flossing. News outlets have gleefully reported that there's a lack of hard evidence at present to show that flossing is effective. But we would like to point out that, as the saying goes, “Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.” There are a number of reasons why health care organizations like the American Dental Association (ADA) still firmly recommend daily flossing. Here are a few:

  • It's well established that when plaque is allowed to build up on teeth, tooth decay and gum disease are bound to follow.
  • A tooth brush does a good job of cleaning most tooth surfaces, but it can't reach into spaces between teeth.
  • Cleaning between teeth (interdental cleaning) has been shown to remove plaque and food debris from these hard-to-reach spaces.
  • Dental floss isn't the only method for interdental cleaning… but it is recognized by dentists as the best way, and is an excellent method for doing this at home — or anywhere else!

Whether you use dental floss or another type of interdental cleaner is up to you. But the ADA stands by its recommendations for maintaining good oral health: Brush twice a day for two minutes with fluoride toothpaste; visit your dentist regularly for professional cleanings and checkups; and clean between teeth once a day with an interdental cleaner like floss. It doesn't matter if you do it in your own home, or on the sidelines of an NFL game… as long as you do it!

If you would like more information about flossing and oral hygiene, contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation.

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