Dental Implants Prevent Physical and Psychological Problems

dental implants La Mesa

Do you have missing teeth? Then you are not alone. Even though the U.S. is one of the most advanced countries in the world, tooth loss is commonplace. In middle age, it tends to become more common.

According to Harvard Medical School, the average adult has lost 12 permanent teeth by the age of 50. Tooth loss transpires due to a number of issues including, wear, tooth decay, gum disease, cancer, and injury. Missing teeth can influence our self-esteem, oral health, and function.

Let’s talk about two ways missing teeth impact your life. One is a psychological issue and the other is a physical issue.

Reduced Self Esteem

If you have a missing tooth or teeth you may believe it creates an unattractive appearance or at least an unattractive smile. When you look in the mirror, you may feel you look older and perhaps less attractive. The way you look affects the way you feel. You may smile less because you are self-conscious. You may avoid social activities that can impact your mental health. Dentures don’t prevent bone recession. And they can irritate the soft tissues of the mouth.

Aside from appearance concerns, there are health matters that arise if you don’t replace missing teeth.

Bone Loss

Your jawbone’s health and strength is preserved through the stimulus of chewing. It’s important to understand that missing teeth can cause bone loss, also called bone resorption. It happens when the tooth is missing and the natural roots are not longer in the jawbone. Over time, the jawbone can deteriorate due to bone resorption.

Implants Provide a Variety of Solutions

A tooth implant is an ideal solution for a missing tooth.

Dental implants are strong, functional, and naturally-looking restorations with roots permanently anchored into the jawbone.

Dental implants have been used for many years to replace one or two missing teeth. They can also be used to provide a structure for bridges and anchored dentures!

At Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry, nothing gives us more joy than helping people dramatically improve their quality of life. With a new smile, they feel better about themselves. They feel more comfortable in public and socialize more often.

If you are embarrassed by missing teeth or ill-fitting dentures, don’t wait any longer. Call us today at 619-337-7700 to begin restoring your smile.

Contact Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry:

619-337-7700

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

8555 Fletcher Pkwy Ste 102
La Mesa, California
91942

 

ArticleID 8321

3 Ways Mouthguards Prevent Kids’ Sports Injuries

Sports mouthguards San Diego

At Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry, we treat dental emergencies caused by sports injuries. These include knocked-out teeth, broken teeth, and mouth lacerations.

Many of these injuries could have been prevented (or rendered less severe) with the proper protective gear.

All athletes who participate in contact sports are in jeopardy of injuries to their mouths and teeth. It doesn’t matter if you are a professional athlete or a 6-year-old playing youth soccer.

When it comes to protecting your mouth, a custom-fitted mouthguard is an integral piece of athletic gear that should be used from an early age.

What age group has the most injuries?

8- to 12-year-old kids who participate in basketball, hockey, baseball, soccer, rugby, football, and lacrosse are typically most affected by lost or damaged teeth. But even those that participate in non-contact sports like skateboarding, mountain biking, or climbing can benefit from wearing a custom mouthguard.

Mouthguards are made of strong, flexible materials that are designed to protect your teeth, gum, and jaw in case of an impact. A mouthguard forms a protective layer between your teeth and the point of impact. The following are three important ways a mouthguard can protect you while playing sports.

Absorb Force

Any bump to the face or jaw involves force or energy. A mouthguard absorbs some of the energy, ensuring that the potential harm caused by the impact is limited. The cushioning effect of a mouthguard can prevent your teeth from being slammed together. By absorbing force, mouthguards can also help prevent jaw fractures and neck trauma.

Prevent Broken Teeth

Another benefit of using a mouthguard is that it disperses the energy directed at the teeth. For example, if you are hit in the mouth with a hockey stick, the mouthguard spreads out the energy that accompanies the impact. This can prevent broken teeth by minimizing the chance that a single tooth will take the whole brunt of the force.

Avoid Lip and Tongue Injuries

Mouthguards cover the upper teeth entirely. This creates a functional barrier between your teeth and the rest of your mouth. This decreases the chance of lip and tongue injuries by making it harder for your teeth to cut your lip or your tongue.

With a tailor-made mouthguard, you will make sure you get an effective and comfortable fit. It makes playing sports safer for your smile.

Contact Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry:

619-337-7700

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

8555 Fletcher Pkwy Ste 102
La Mesa, California
91942

 

ArticleID 8325

Is Your Smile In A World Of Hurt?

full mouth reconstruction San Diego

Do you have extreme tooth damage, bone loss, or few or no teeth still intact? This post is for San Diego area residents whose mouths are in a world of hurt.

First off, we feel for you. We understand how severe dental issues impact you every day of your life.

Whatever the cause of the condition – chemotherapy, recreational drug use, eating disorder, extreme mouth injury, disability, inadequate oral hygiene, or simply poor overall health – there is hope.

Full mouth reconstruction can restore your previously healthy, attractive smile or give you the stunning smile you never had. Patients who undergo full mouth reconstruction regain their confidence to smile, eat, and speak normally. How would that impact your life?

Replacing missing teeth and adding bone through grafting restores underlying facial structure, improving or preventing that “sunk-in” look that develops when teeth are gone and the jawbone recedes.

Full mouth reconstruction (sometimes called full mouth restoration) is a term that refers to a combination of dental procedures that restore a smile for people with several damaged or missing teeth. Treatment may include any combination of the following procedures: crowns, inlays/onlays, dental bonding, white filling replacement, tooth implants, porcelain veneers, implant-anchored dentures, gum contouring, soft tissue grafts, bone grafts, and tooth whitening.

Dental implants are often the best tooth replacement for Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry patients with missing teeth. A dental implant consists of a titanium post surgically inserted into the jaw bone to replace the root of the missing tooth. If there is not enough bone to anchor an implant, bone grafting may be carried out to augment existing bone. The post integrates with the bone to provide a secure foundation for the abutment and beautiful crown. Dental implants are indistinguishable from original teeth in both form and function.

If you currently have dentures, communicate with us about implant-anchored full or partial dentures. Significant improvements can be made even if you only get two or three tooth implants.

Crowns (sometimes called caps) are used when there is enough viable tooth structure that the tooth doesn’t need to be extracted. A crown adds strength to a tooth that has a large filling or has been injured. A crown can correct a bite misalignment and is usually required after a root canal. In a dental implant procedure, attaching the crown to the abutment is the final step.

Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry offers a full menu of cosmetic dental care including total mouth reconstruction. Cosmetic dentistry may be more affordable than you think. Talk to us about financing or a multi-procedure treatment schedule that allows you to pay as you go. Restoring a healthy smile may be the best investment you ever make.

Contact Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry:

619-337-7700

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

8555 Fletcher Pkwy Ste 102
La Mesa, California
91942

 

ArticleID 7017

Urgent Care Dentists Replace Broken Dental Crowns

cost of dental crowns San Diego

If your dental crown breaks, do you need to replace it?

Yes. Here’s why:

  1. The tooth is compromised and could sustain additional damage
  2. The tooth is vulnerable to tooth decay
  3. It could damage the opposing tooth
  4. It could cause problems with your bite

La Mesa endodontists, cosmetic dentists, and urgent care dentists use dental crowns (sometimes called caps) in many restorative treatments.

Dental crowns serve many purposes:

  1. A crown adds durability to a tooth that has a large filling or has been injured
  2. A crown can fix bite misalignments in some situations.
  3. A crown is usually required after a root canal
  4. Attaching the crown to the abutment is the final step for
  5. Crowns used to improve the look of teeth: yellow teeth, stained teeth, too-small teeth, and teeth that are misshapen

What are dental crowns made of?

Dental crowns are constructed from a variety of materials that vary in appearance and strength:

  • All ceramic (porcelain-based)
  • Porcelain fused to metal
  • Gold alloys
  • Base metal alloys

Your dentist can help you identify which type is right for you. Factors to consider are the location of the crown in the mouth, your budget, and any allergies to metal. When many La Mesa dentists provide a crown restoration, they use a process that requires two office visits. On the first visit, the dentist will prepare the tooth and take an impression for the dental lab. Then, they will provide a temporary crown for the patient to use until the permanent crown is ready.

Some dentists have CEREC technology that allows them to fabricate and place crowns in one visit.

How Long Do Dental Crowns Last?

Dental crowns can last for many years but are not designed to last indefinitely. Even with proper care, dental patients should not expect crowns to be trouble-free for decades. A 2009 study found that more than 90% of dental crowns do not require treatment within five years of placement. The study also found that 50% to 80% last from 15 to 20 years. (Source)

At Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry in La Mesa, we replace broken dental crowns and treat other urgent dental issues.

Contact Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry:

619-337-7700

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

8555 Fletcher Pkwy Ste 102
La Mesa, California
91942

 

ArticleID 8242

Patient-Centered Dental Care

La Mesa affordable family dentist

At Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry, we are committed to providing patient-focused dental care of the highest standard.

We are here to help you. You could be our next success story!

What is patient-focused care?

A check-up with no cavities? A dazzling smile? A dental crown that looks as natural as the surrounding teeth?

It could mean all those things and many more.

For a child, dental success could be defined as a childhood free of cavities. Learning proper oral hygiene. Plus gaining an understanding of why it’s important.

What about a local La Mesa adolescent who is hesitant to smile because of crooked teeth? The solution is a successful course of orthodontic treatment. The result is a beautiful smile that boosts self-assurance.

What about the La Mesa man who suffered dental trauma in an accident? Patient-focused care could be dental implants that restore oral health and tooth function.

For a woman with tetracycline stains but otherwise healthy teeth, patient-centered care may be as simple as quick in-office same-day tooth whitening.

Consider someone with several missing teeth who can only eat soft foods. Patient-focused care could mean natural-looking implant-anchored dentures that allow the patient to eat steak for the first time in years.

We serve your specific dental needs

What are your goals for your smile? What is the current state of your oral health? Schedule a consultation with Jeff Gray.

 

Contact Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry:

619-337-7700

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

8555 Fletcher Pkwy Ste 102
La Mesa, California
91942

 

ArticleID 8205

What’s the Difference Between Silver Fillings and White Fillings?

white fillings La Mesa

In today’s post, we discuss fillings.

What is a composite filling?

Composite fillings are fabricated with a mixture of glass or quartz and resin which results in a natural tooth-colored material. They are extremely durable when bonded to the tooth with adhesive.

What is an amalgam filling?

Amalgam fillings are also called “silver fillings” though they aren’t 100% silver. Dental amalgam is about 50% mercury with some silver, tin, and copper. Mercury creates a durable compound with the other metals. This type of filling has been used to fill cavities in teeth since 1895.

Are amalgam fillings dangerous?

Some people claim that mercury fillings are linked to chronic disease. In fact, some dentists (known as “holistic” or “mercury-free”) have founded practices around replacing amalgam fillings with composite fillings. However, many respected medical and scientific associations have long indicated that amalgam fillings are safe. This includes the American Dental Association, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the Mayo Clinic, and the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.

This is from the International Journal of Dentistry:

1) Mercury released from dental amalgam restorations does not contribute to systemic disease or systemic toxicological effects

2) Allergic reactions to mercury from dental amalgam restorations have been demonstrated, but these are extremely rare

3) Available scientific data do not justify the discontinuation of dental amalgam use from clinical practice or the replacement with other single-tooth restorative dental materials

(Source: Uçar Y, Brantley WA. Section 5. Conclusions:  Biocompatibility of Dental Amalgams. Int J Dent 2011;2011:981595. doi:10.1155/2011/981595. Accessed April 5, 2016.)

Do you have a youngster with amalgam fillings and are concerned about safety? Schedule a consultation with Dr, Gray to discuss your worries.

Is a composite filling the same as a white filling?

Yes, informally. The term “white filling” has become a descriptive term. Composite fillings are made to match perfectly with the patient’s tooth color. Compared to amalgam fillings–which don’t match the color of teeth–they are whitish, white with a slight yellow tint, or white with a slight gray tint depending on the color of the tooth.

What’s the difference between composite fillings and amalgam fillings?

As discussed previously, these fillings are fabricated using different materials. Composite fillings have the characteristic of blending seamlessly with the tooth. In some settings–such as a large cavity in a molar–an amalgam filling may be considered. Keep in mind that a composite filling has proved to be a solid restoration.

Are amalgam fillings still used?

Despite the popularity of tooth-colored fillings, some San Diego dentists still find amalgam fillings most appropriate for some situations. Unfortunately, some dental insurance providers and state Medicaid plans don’t cover composite fillings.

Do you have more questions about fillings?

Call Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry at the number below!

 

 

Contact Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry:

619-337-7700

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

8555 Fletcher Pkwy Ste 102
La Mesa, California
91942

 

ArticleID 8293

CEREC Same-Day Restorations For Dental Emergencies

emergency dental office La Mesa

CEREC “Chairside Economical Restoration of Esthetic Ceramics” crowns are fast and convenient. They make “same-day” dentistry possible. If your dental practice performs CEREC, your dentist can fabricate strong, natural-looking crowns in one visit.

Because of this, CEREC has many merits for cosmetic dental patients.

CEREC For Dental Emergencies

CEREC technology also plays a key role in emergency dentistry.

A dental emergency is, by definition, inconvenient. (You can’t get more inconvenient than an event that transpires with no warning whatsoever.)

Reduce The Impact To Your Schedule

The dental injury and visit to an urgent care practice are disruptive enough. If your dental emergency involves ongoing dental appointments, it further complicates your life.

  • You may have to take time off from work
  • You may have to get child care
  • You may have to cancel flight reservations for a vacation or business trip
  • You may have to reschedule other appointments

Same-day restorations don’t require ongoing treatment after an initial emergency visit.

CEREC Crowns are High Quality

Worried that CEREC same-day restorations are inferior to traditional restorations?

Let’s put your mind at ease.

CEREC crowns are constructed with durable, high-quality materials.

A CEREC crown is shaped with CAD/CAM scanning technology which is just as accurate as a traditional impression. (Some dentists believe a CEREC crown is even more precise than a crown developed from a traditional impression.)

CEREC crowns:

  1. Are indistinguishable from your remaining teeth
  2. Function like a conventional crown
  3. Don’t require a messy impression
  4. Don’t require a temporary crown that may come loose or fall off—leaving your damaged tooth in danger of further injury
  5. Can last ten years or longer
  6. Are performed in one dental visit

Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry offers CEREC same-day crowns. This is one way we ease the trauma when you have a dental emergency. Save our phone number to your contacts. In the unfortunate event that you experience a dental emergency, call us ASAP. If someone else is driving, call us on your way to our office. We have extended hours to serve you.

 

Contact Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry:

619-337-7700

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

8555 Fletcher Pkwy Ste 102
La Mesa, California
91942

 

ArticleID 8219

Not Your Mother’s Jewelry: 5 Reasons Tongue Piercings Are Dangerous

lip piercings La Mesa

Let’s get right to it; while tongue, cheek, and lip piercings are “so in” right now, here’s five reasons to keep piercings where they belong—in your ears:

  1. Excessive drooling—YIKES!
  2. Chipped teeth
  3. Infection (some even in places you wouldn’t think can get infected)
  4. Hypersensitivity to metal
  5. Nerve damage

Drooling

Lip and tongue piercings may make you look cool and edgy. They may express your personality and creativity. But they can cause repeated drooling. That may not be the look you’re going for.

Broken Teeth

Another important reason to keep piercings away from your mouth, lips, and tongue, is because having any metal in your mouth can chip your teeth. This can happen while eating, drinking, or sleeping. Or even while playing with said piercing.

Do you already have a tooth that’s broken? Repair these cracks early before more damage ensues.

Small cracks in a tooth can be filled or crowned. But often patients with piercings come in with more serious issues. These may require a root canal or tooth extraction.

Infection

Beware of infection. When it comes to oral piercings, you have to really watch the pierced area. Your mouth is a bacterial zoo, so to speak. Upon piercing anything in your mouth, the bacteria can enter your bloodstream. Neglecting correct brushing habits can lead to infection. As well as touching the piercing with dirty hands.

Hypersensitivity or Allergic Reaction to Metal

Many people love body jewelry. But too much of a good thing (like metal) can be bad. Having metal piercings can lead to hypersensitivity to any metal in your mouth, such as silverware. This is problematic for most people. (Stock up on plastic utensils!)

There is also the risk of an allergic reaction at the piercing site. If you have a sensitivity to certain metals, you can get your piercing in a metal you aren’t allergic to. But you are still in danger of the other risks discussed here.

Nerve Damage

Finally, there’s the risk of permanent nerve damage. If the previous dangers don’t dissuade you, this one should. Experiencing a numb tongue is usually temporary. But in extreme cases, like if you can’t stop playing with the piercing, it can become permanent.

 

Contact Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry:

619-337-7700

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

8555 Fletcher Pkwy Ste 102
La Mesa, California
91942

 

ArticleID 8156

Same-Day Tooth Pain Relief

walk-in dental practice La Mesa

When you have a toothache, that’s all you can think about. It makes it challenging to handle your everyday tasks.

If the tooth starts hurting after business hours or on the weekend, you may resign yourself to waiting until a traditional dental practice opens.

When others are closed, Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry is here for you. We treat walk-in dental emergencies. That means you don’t need to make an appointment.

We will determine the cause of the tooth pain and take care of you.

Is A Toothache A Dental Emergency?

Yes. Here’s why. Tooth pain may be a symptom of an urgent ailment. We are equipped to treat many causes of tooth pain. Your tooth pain may be caused by one of the following:

Decay

Eventually, cavities can reach the tooth nerve. Ouch! The earlier the issue is addressed, the better your chances of saving the tooth.

Gum disease

Gum disease (or the more serious periodontitis) may cause pain. It should be treated immediately before teeth loosen. At that point, you risk losing them.

Damaged Tooth Pulp

When the inner nerves down in the root of the tooth become infected, an emergency root canal can allow you to save the tooth. Plus it ends the pain!

Maybe It’s Not Your Tooth

Everything’s connected, right? Problems with surrounding systems can cause tooth pain along with a plethora of other symptoms. Your tooth pain may be caused by an ear or sinus infection.

Whether it’s a condition with your tooth, or something else, let’s get it taken care of.

 

Contact Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry:

619-337-7700

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

8555 Fletcher Pkwy Ste 102
La Mesa, California
91942

 

ArticleID 8117

Five Cavity Basics

San Diego Cosmetic Dentist

Cavities and tooth decay are among the world’s most common health problems. They’re especially common in children, teenagers and older adults. But anyone who has teeth can get cavities, including infants.

If cavities aren’t treated, they get larger and affect deeper layers of your teeth.The desire to prohibit cavities is one of the main reasons people visit us at Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry in and around the greater San Diego and La Mesa areas.

Cavities, both treated and untreated, in all adults age 20 to 64 declined from the early 1970s until the most recent (1999-2004) National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. The decrease was significant in all population subgroups. In spite of this decline, significant disparities are still found in some population groups.

Today we are going to highlight 5 things you need to know about cavities.

1. Cavities are also called caries or tooth decay. When a tooth is permanently damaged in the hard surface, tiny openings emerge. These little holes are cavities.

2. Factors that contribute to dental caries are:

  • Frequent eating
  • Consuming sugary beverages
  • Oral bacteria
  • Poor dental hygiene

3. Cavities may get so bad that you will see pits or holes in your teeth, but symptoms may be more subtle, such as sensitivity, pain when biting, or a toothache. If you experience any of these symptoms, you should call your dentist today to schedule an appointment.

4. Cavities are more common among young children, but that doesn’t mean adults don’t have to take precautions.

5. Avoiding cavities is simple. Be sure to brush twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste, floss daily, eat right, forego frequent snacking, and have regular visits with your dentist.

If you are in the market for quality dental care in the La Mesa area, consider us at Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry. We have been providing sedation and cosmetic dentistry in and around San Diego since 1986. Please give us a call today!

Contact Jeff Gray DDS – Sedation & Cosmetic Dentistry:

619-337-7700

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

8555 Fletcher Pkwy Ste 102
La Mesa, California
91942