Blog

When Wayward Teeth Take A Crooked Path

La Mesa orthodontics

Invisalign clear braces are an increasingly popular choice in orthodontics. They produce excellent results, but are so discreet that some people call them invisible. They are available from Jeff Gray DDS in La Mesa.

Unlike traditional metal braces, Inviaslign clear braces have no wires, brackets or rubber bands. They are so discreet that people standing just a few feet away from you may not realize you’re wearing them.

They look a lot like an athlete’s mouth guard. The proper term for such braces is “aligner.” They are made of clear plastic and are worn over your upper teeth to gradually bring them into alignment.

One of the things that people like best about Invisalign clear braces is that they are removable. You can take them out at mealtime, and when you brush your teeth at night. You should wear them while you sleep, however. For the best results it’s recommended they be worn for at least twenty-two hours each day.

Invisalign clear braces are a great choice for adults who want to straighten their teeth, but don’t want to wear traditional braces at work. They are not, however, for everyone. They are not good for patients who, for example, have severely rotated teeth.

To find out if Invisalign clear braces are right for you, schedule a consultation with Jeff Gray DDS in La Mesa. We provide a full range of general and cosmetic dentistry. Make an appointment with us today.

Contact Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry:

619-717-8560

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

8555 Fletcher Pkwy Ste 102
La Mesa, California
91942

 


Think You May Have A Cavity?

white dental fillings La Mesa

Teeth require a lot of tender, loving care. But even when we do our best to practice daily dental hygiene, bacteria still sneaks in to cause cavities – the common cold of oral health. At dentist Jeff Gray DDS in La Mesa, we have been filling cavities for years and are proud to offer our Soft Prep, no shot, no drilling filling machine.

Few individuals go their entire life without getting a cavity. Unfortunately for some children, a cavity is the first health problem they experience in childhood.

Cavities are caused when bacteria, acid, food debris, and saliva combine to form plaque.

Plaque then clings to your teeth and the acid in the plaque starts to dissolve the enamel. The result is a hole in your tooth which can also be accompanied by a pain.

Because of how quick and effective dental fillings are, they are one of the best options to fix a cavity. At Jeff Gray DDS our Soft Prep, no shot system can be used on small to medium sized cavities on the chewing surfaces of teeth, which is where cavities most often occur.

A filling isn’t a “set it and forget it” treatment. A tooth that has received a filling still needs to be properly cared for because dental caries can arise in the surrounding tooth structure if bacteria is allowed to flourish.

Checkups are a critical part of caring for your teeth and there’s no better place to receive checkups than at Jeff Gray DDS in La Mesa. We provide general dentistry in a comfortable, state-of-the-art office with a friendly, professional staff! Make an appointment with us today.

Contact Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry:

619-717-8560

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

8555 Fletcher Pkwy Ste 102
La Mesa, California
91942

 


Think You Know How To Brush? Think Again.

La Mesa tooth brushing tips

You’ve got this dental hygiene thing down. After all, you’ve been brushing since you were five. You switch to auto pilot morning and night and get it done. But are you doing it right?

Actually, many people are making tooth brushing mistakes. You may need to tweak your routine to better benefit your oral health and protect your smile from tooth decay and gum disease.

Here are important tooth brushing tips:

1. Take your time.
It’s understandable. You want to finish and get to bed. Proper teeth cleaning takes time and careful attention. Time yourself the next time you brush—you might be surprised at how swiftly you finish. The process should take at least two to three minutes. It can also be useful to take a different route around your mouth every few days. By altering your pattern, you approach areas from a different, and possibly, better angle.

2. Don’t forget to floss.
No matter how agile you can be with your brush, it’s challenging to eliminate the plaque from all those narrow gaps between your teeth. That is where bacteria can easily propagate and start the decay process.

3. Use the right toothbrush.
It is ironic that some people hurt their enamel or gums because they brush too vigorously with an inflexible brush. We recommend using a soft brush. If you’ve had gum grafts, you may want to use an extra soft brush.

4. Don’t keep your tooth brush near the toilet.
This is awful to think about, but each time the toilet is flushed, bacteria is sent far into the air—even if you close the lid. Keep your toothbrush in a clean place and allow it to air dry.

5. Use fluoride toothpaste.
This may seem like a no-brainer but you may be surprised that some oral care products don’t contain fluoride. And you may think it’s only for babies. Not true. Your enamel is continually under assault from acidic foods and drinks and fluoride helps it remineralize.

At Jeff Gray DDS in La Mesa, we offer our patients general and cosmetic dentistry, along with lots of useful tips. Make an appointment with us today.

Contact Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry:

619-717-8560

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

8555 Fletcher Pkwy Ste 102
La Mesa, California
91942

 


Missing Teeth and Dental Implants

It’s a deceptively simple idea: replace a missing tooth by attaching an artificial one directly to the patient’s jaw. It’s an idea that has been around for a thousand years or more, but in the last half century, it has become an exact science. Dental implants are one of the specialties offered at Jeff Gray DDS in La Mesa.

First, let’s clear up one point: a dental implant refers not to the artificial tooth, but to the titanium post that is embedded in the jaw. It goes where the tooth root used to be, and because of that, helps to prevent bone recession. An artificial tooth sits on top of the post.

A bridge used to be the only real option for people who wanted to replace a missing tooth. Not anymore. The American Dental Association says that dental implants are one of the biggest advances in dentistry. They look and function just like a natural tooth.

Even people who are missing all of their teeth can benefit from dental implants. New, permanent styles of dentures can be supported in the jaw by implants. They are far more secure than traditional dentures.

If you have lost one or more of your natural teeth, dental implants may be just what you’ve been hoping for. Call us at Jeff Gray DDS in La Mesa to see if you are a viable candidate. We also provide sedation dentistry, and treatment for conditions like sleep apnea. Make an appointment with us today.

Contact Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry:

619-717-8560

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

8555 Fletcher Pkwy Ste 102
La Mesa, California
91942


Overcoming Anxiety With Gentle Dental

La Mesa sleep dentistry

Dental anxiety and dental phobia affect many people, including patients at Jeff Gray DDS  in La Mesa. Today’s post answers some questions asked about this vital topic.

What are the long-term consequences of dental anxiety and dental phobia?
The most harmful consequence is when a dental phobic patient delays dental care until a pain becomes excruciating. At this point, the trouble is usually extremely advanced and requires extensive treatment.

In addition, there are usually many other dental problems in varying stages of progression. Many oral conditions eventually cause malfunction in other vital systems risking general health and well-being.

There is also another anxiety at play, albeit a very ironic one. In addition to the emotional distress about dental treatment, the patient who avoids dental care starts panicking about the sorry condition of their teeth.

If I have dental phobia or anxiety, what should I do to guard my oral health?

Schedule an appointment with Jeff Gray DDS in La Mesa. There are several individual fears associated with dental anxiety and dental phobia. Fear of pain, fear of the unknown, fear of loss of control, and extreme embarrassment because of poor dental health are the most prevalent concerns. During your consultation, we will address each of your specific fears and discuss them.

What if I need more help to get through treatment?
The terms “sleep dentistry” and “oral conscious sedation” are both used, but they are not exactly the same thing. There are three main types of sedation used in dentistry.

Level 1: Nitrous Oxide
Nitrous oxide, or, informally, “laughing gas” is safe and effective. Nitrous oxide has been used in La Mesa cosmetic dental offices for decades because in many ways it is the prime mild sedative. It goes to work at the first inhalation, relaxes the patient during the treatment without rendering them completely unconscious, and wears off quickly after the mask is removed. And no needles are required – a key feature for the needle-phobic.

Level 2: Oral Conscious Sedation
Oral sedatives don’t start working as rapidly as nitrous oxide, but they help most patients achieve a deeper level of relaxation. These medications, however, do not usually bring about complete unconsciousness. Thus, oral sedatives and nitrous oxide are used in “conscious” sedation. Two common sedatives used by La Mesa dentists to assuage patient’s fears are diazepam and triazolam.

Level 3: IV Sedation
IV sedation produces actual “sleep dentistry.” Most patients are completely oblivious to the dental procedures they are receiving. IV sedation is useful for root canals, wisdom teeth extractions, multi-procedure smile makeovers, and oral surgery.

To learn more about overcoming sedation dentistry, call Jeff Gray DDS. We also provide general and cosmetic dentistry.

Contact Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry:

619-717-8560

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

8555 Fletcher Pkwy Ste 102
La Mesa, California
91942

 


5 Critical Things To Know About Periodontal Disease

gum disease exam La Mesa

Periodontal disease, frequently called gum disease, is inflammation or infection of the gums. For the most part, periodontal disease is preventable. This condition is so widespread in the US that it has been called a ‘health crisis’ by the ADA. Fortunately, periodontal disease can be treated at Jeff Gray DDS in La Mesa.

Consider:

  1. If left untreated, it can cause irreversible damage such as tooth loss.
  2. Practicing proper dental hygiene and having 6-month dental exams are the best way to prevent periodontal disease.
  3. Periodontal disease can be present where there is no tooth decay.
  4. Almost half of all 30+ adults in the US have periodontal disease.
  5. In some cases, periodontal disease produces no noticeable symptoms.

Even if you don’t feel any pain in your mouth, it is important to see us at Jeff Gray DDS in La Mesa twice a year for a cleaning and checkup. We also provide clear braces from Invisalign. Make an appointment with us today.

Contact Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry:

619-717-8560

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

8555 Fletcher Pkwy Ste 102
La Mesa, California
91942

 


Protect Your Young Athlete’s Teeth

Do you have a son or daughter that plays youth sports? Soccer, baseball, football, and basketball can be very dangerous for your child’s teeth. A mouth guard from Jeff Gray DDS in La Mesa can make a all the difference.

Football is a violent contact sport, yet there is a relatively low rate of tooth injuries that occur in football as compared to other contact sports. Why? Football players are required to wear a mouth guard and a helmet.

Inexpensive athletic dental mouth guards are worth their weight in gold!

If your child participates in a contact sport and does not currently wear a mouth guard, we recommend that you pick up an appropriately-sized mouth guard and make sure they wear it. They are available at most Ladera Ranch athletic supply stores. Some dentists make custom-made athletic mouthguards that deliver even better protection than the one-size-fits-all brands.

At Jeff Gray DDS in La Mesa, we can get your child fitted with a custom mouth guard. We also provide dental implants, along with general dentistry. Make an appointment with us today.

Contact Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry:

619-717-8560

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

8555 Fletcher Pkwy Ste 102
La Mesa, California
91942


Aching Jaw?

Aching Jaw In La Mesa?

Today in the Jeff Gray DDS blog, we look at some of the conditions that may result in TMJ pain, a serious condition affecting many La Mesa residents.

TMJ is convenient shorthand for the temporomandibular joint, a big word for your jaw. Jaw pain may be caused by sinusitis. Sinusitis is the inflammation of the tissues that line your sinuses, and when these tissues are inflamed, the sinuses exert pressure on surrounding areas. If the inflamed sinus is near the jaw, pain in the jaw joint may result. This commonly happens with a cold or allergies.

The source of jaw pain can easily be identified at Jeff Gray DDS, and treatment can begin from there. But remember, jaw pain shouldn’t be ignored.

Jeff Gray DDS in La Mesa offers:

Invisalign
Dental implants
Teeth whitening
Cosmetic dentistry

Whether you need TMJ treatment or a routine dental check up, contact Jeff Gray DDS in La Mesa today!

Contact Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry:

619-717-8560

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

8555 Fletcher Pkwy Ste 102
La Mesa, California
91942

 


Retaining Brightness After Teeth Whitening Treatment

professional tooth whitening La Mesa

If you decide to improve your smile with professional teeth whitening at Jeff Gray DDS in La Mesa, you want the results to last as long as possible. Unfortunately, the same things that stained your teeth prior to the treatment can stain them after the treatment. Over time, common staining will transpire.

Here are some tips to make your beautiful smile last.

Do’s

First, rinse daily with anti-cavity rinse. This boosts oral hygiene, decreases bacteria, slows the build up of plaque, and also helps whiten your teeth. Additionally, there are many over-the-counter rinses with an additional whitening agent which will help lengthen the results of the whitening process.

Don’ts

There are some daily practices to abstain from because they will stain your teeth over time. These include drinking coffee, tea, soft drinks, red wine, smoking, and even some medications. If you cannot completely cut these out of your life, rinse your mouth out after you use them.

Avoid acidic foods and beverages. These can weaken or wear away the enamel on your teeth, and thin enamel allows the yellow dentin to show through.

Artificial coloring in any items can stain your newly whitened teeth. Candy, popsicles, and fruit punch are examples.

Remember the Basics

We probably don’t need to remind you, but brushing your teeth properly a couple times a day will help you keep your white smile. You may choose a toothpaste with extra whitening or baking soda to help the process.

Proper brushing should take you at least two minutes using short brush strokes, paying close attention to the gum line and hard-to-reach areas. Clean the outer surfaces of your upper, then lower teeth, as well as the inner surfaces. Finally, don’t forget the chewing surfaces and your tongue. Using good brushing techniques for 120 seconds will support oral hygiene, and permanent stains will not build up as fast.

It doesn’t take too much effort or money to make your teeth whitening last. If you have any questions or would like additional tips on how to retain your fresh, white smile, call Jeff Gray DDS in La Mesa. We provide general dentistry. Make an appointment today.

Contact Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry:

619-717-8560

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

8555 Fletcher Pkwy Ste 102
La Mesa, California
91942

 


Saliva And Dental Health

Saliva And La Mesa

Today we look at the importance of your saliva. Though most people may think it’s gross, your La Mesa dentist reminds you that saliva is vital for dental health as well as digestion.

Saliva is mostly water, but a small portion of it is made up of enzymes, antibacterial substances, mucus, and minerals. The optimal pH balance of the mouth is maintained by saliva, and pH balance is a key factor for preventing cavities.

The minerals in saliva help to maintain the enamel surface of the teeth. Immunoproteins in saliva suppress the overgrowth of microbes in the mouth, thereby protecting the gums from gingivitis.

Now that you know how vital saliva is to dental health, we’re sure you can see why ample salivary flow should concern you. For most individuals, everyday chewing is enough to stimulate salivary glands to release saliva. However, dry mouth, also known as xerostomia, is a condition that should be dealt with quickly before oral health problems take place.

At Jeff Gray DDS in La Mesa, we provide general and cosmetic dentistry. Make an appointment with us today.

Contact Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry:

619-717-8560

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

8555 Fletcher Pkwy Ste 102
La Mesa, California
91942

 


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