Posts for: October, 2017
It’s hard to avoid stress in the 21st Century. We’re all bombarded with stressors, from work to family — even our smart phones!
The problem really isn’t the stressors themselves but how we respond to them and try to relieve stress. This can often have a negative effect on our health. One example: bruxism, also known as teeth grinding or clenching.
These habits involve the rhythmic or spasmodic clenching, biting or grinding of the teeth, often involuntarily, beyond normal chewing function. It often occurs while we sleep — jaw soreness the next morning is a telltale sign. While there are other causes, stress is one of the most common for adults, bolstered by diet and lifestyle habits like tobacco or drug use, or excessive caffeine and alcohol.
Teeth grinding’s most serious consequence is the potential for dental problems. While teeth normally wear as we age, grinding or clenching habits can accelerate it. Wearing can become so extensive the enamel erodes, possibly leading to fractures or cracks in the tooth.
When dealing with this type of bruxism, we must address the root cause: your relationship to stress. For example, if you use tobacco, consider quitting the habit — not only for your overall health, but to remove it as a stress stimulant. The same goes for cutting back on your consumption of caffeinated or alcoholic drinks.
Adopt an “unwinding” pattern at night before you sleep to better relax: for example, take a warm bath or keep work items or digital media out of the bedroom.Â Many people also report relaxation or stress-relief techniques like meditation, mindfulness or biofeedback helpful.
There’s another useful tool for easing the effects of nighttime teeth grinding: an occlusal guard. This custom-fitted appliance worn while you sleep prevents teeth from making solid contact with each other when you clench them. This can greatly reduce the adverse effects on your teeth while you’re working on other stress coping techniques.
Teeth grinding or clenching can prove harmful over time. The sooner you address this issue with your dentist or physician, the less likely you’ll experience these unwanted consequences.
If you would like more information on the causes and treatments for teeth grinding, 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 “Teeth Grinding: Causes and Therapies for a Potentially Troubling Behavior.”
When looking at pictures of yourself, do you notice flaws in your smile? Discolorations, alignment problems, breakage and other issues with the shape and size of your teeth can detract from your overall appearance. But with cosmetic dentistry procedures from Dr. Dana Cuculici, your dentist in Tampa, FL, a renewed and beautiful smile can be yours! You can learn more about a few of the amazing cosmetic treatments we offer at Carrollwood Dental Spa here.
Sometimes brushing isn't enough to maintain a bright smile. That's because the surface of the teeth traps tiny particles that can eventually build up to change their shade to yellow, brown, or gray. A whitening procedure from your cosmetic dentist, Dr. Cuculici, clears stains away for a smile that can be up to eight shades brighter. Teeth whitening is an affordable and quick treatment, usually taking less than an hour at Carrollwood Dental Spa, and the results are immediate and long-lasting.
Misshapen, crooked, or broken teeth can make an otherwise healthy smile look unattractive. By filling in these spaces with a ceramic bonding material, your Tampa cosmetic dentist can make your smile look brand new again! This tooth-colored material starts out soft to allow for sculpting and shaping. It is then hardened into place with a curing light. The bonding material is also commonly used as a discreet and effective way to fill cavities.
For a whole new look, veneers from your cosmetic dentist offer the unique ability to fix many cosmetic dental problems with one restoration. Tiny sections of porcelain are affixed to the front of teeth that are discolored, out of alignment, or have other visible issues. The result is a Hollywood-worthy smile that is white, even, and absolutely stunning!
If you're ready to see yourself in a whole new light, contact Carrollwood Dental Spa in Tampa, FL to make an appointment with your cosmetic dentist, Dr. Cuculici, today. We look forward to helping you transform your smile!
Learning you’re pregnant can be a joyous moment. But it also means life is about to change as you focus on protecting you and your child from anything that endangers your health.
Because of these new concerns you might even hesitate about receiving dental care, especially involving anesthesia. But several medical organizations representing doctors, OB-GYN physicians and dentists wholeheartedly recommend continuing regular dental visits during pregnancy.
In fact, you should continue them because you’re pregnant: physical and hormonal changes during pregnancy could increase your risk of dental disease.
For, example, your consumption of carbohydrates (like sugar) could increase, which in turn increases your risk of tooth decay. You’ll also need to be more concerned about dental plaque, a thin bacterial film on your teeth that can cause disease. Hormonal changes during pregnancy may make you more sensitive to plaque, and thus more susceptible to disease — especially periodontal (gum) disease.
In fact, a specific form of gum disease called pregnancy gingivitis affects around 40% of expectant women at some point in their pregnancy. And if you already have gum disease, pregnancy could worsen it. Left untreated the disease could develop into more severe periodontitis, which may significantly damage your teeth’s support structures far below the gum line, leading to bone loss, which could result in the eventual loss of your teeth. Daily brushing and flossing, regular cleanings and checkups and, if your dentist prescribes it, antibacterial mouth rinses can help you stay ahead of it.
But what about other procedures while you’re pregnant? It may be best to wait on elective treatments for cosmetic purposes until after the baby is born. But some situations like deep tooth decay that could require a root canal treatment may become too serious to postpone.
Fortunately, several studies have shown it’s safe for pregnant women to undergo many dental procedures including tooth fillings or extractions. And receiving local anesthesia doesn’t appear to pose a danger either.
The important thing is to remain diligent with your own personal hygiene — brushing and flossing — and making other healthy choices like eating a nutritious diet. And be sure to let your dentist know about your pregnancy to help guide your dental treatment over the next few months.