A periodontist is a fully trained dentist who specializes in treating periodontal disease (advanced gum disease) and the placement of dental implants. Read more
We’ll bet the early history of dental care and dentists in the United States is far more interesting that you would have guessed, filled with famous names and genius innovations. While the technology and discoveries that lead to modern dentistry happened all over the world, many notable firsts took place in the United States. Read more
Test your knowledge of dentistry & your dental health! Take the quiz & see the answer key at the bottom to see how well you did. Read more
Generally speaking, there are two types of wisdom tooth pain: the kind that indicates a problem and the kind that’s just part of growing up.
In case you don’t know, wisdom teeth are an additional set of adult molars that typically start coming in between ages 17 and 21. Most children finish getting their adult teeth at around age 12, so wisdom teeth get their name because they appear a few years later, when a person is older and wiser. However, because they come in so much later when most of the adult teeth are already in place, wisdom teeth can often cause problems.
The normal process of tooth eruption can cause wisdom tooth pain. Just like all the other teeth, wisdom teeth need to push up through the gums in order to come in, which can cause occasional aches and soreness. This pain should subside once the tooth has come in all the way, but in the meantime it can be alleviated with topical pain relieving medications, such as Orajel.
However, in a good amount of the population, wisdom teeth do not emerge properly. The teeth can come in a bad angle, get jammed up against the existing molars, and get stuck beneath the surface of the gums. This is what dentists call impacted wisdom teeth.
Impacted wisdom teeth pain is usually an ache that comes and goes over time. It can be irritating and uncomfortable, and often the only long-term solution is to have the impacted teeth extracted. It’s important to note that while extractions are referred to as oral surgery, they are a very routine procedure that usually only requires a day or two of recovery time.
Another cause of wisdom tooth pain is an abscess. This often happens when debris or bacteria get caught in the pockets or crevices caused by a partially erupted wisdom tooth (i.e. a tooth that has only come in part way through the gums). Trapped debris causes and infection, which leads to pain and swelling in the wisdom tooth area. In these cases, the wisdom tooth needs to be removed as soon as possible.
If you have any wisdom teeth pain, it’s a good idea to talk to your dentist about it right away.
Tooth extraction is when a tooth is removed from it’s place in the gum & bone of your jaw. Compared to many dental procedures, tooth extraction can sound scary, especially when it’s referred to as “oral surgery”. However, we believe that understanding the reasons that an extraction is necessary will ease your mind if you’ve been told you need a tooth removed. Read more
Over time, plaque (a thick, bacteria-filled film) and tartar (a hard calcium-based build-up) can build up on your teeth & eventually lead to tooth decay. While regular brushing & flossing at home can help prevent this buildup, Read more