Monday, August 26, 2013

A-Z Guide of Common Dental Problems & Diseases Part 1

Be prepared in advance for any dental problems that may come your way. If you maintain great dental hygiene (e.g. brush and floss your teeth everyday), you are probably going to do just fine. By reading about these conditions in advanced, you will be in a better position to handle and alleviate the problem as soon as it appears. Without further ado, here is part 1 of our A to Z guide of common Dental problems & diseases.

#1 Bad Breath
No one likes to be in the close proximity of someone with bad breath. Unfortunately, there are a whole lot of factors that could inflict bad breath. The common causes include poor dental habits, smoking, and sinus infections. Other than the obvious reason I just stated previously, there are many other reasons as to why you would want to take care of bad breath as soon as possible. First, the persistent presence of bad breath could indicate that you are affected by some sort of gum disease (as we will discuss later). Bad breath may also indicate that your quality of saliva is very low. By this, your saliva isn't doing its job of getting rid of bacteria in your mouth. There are several ways to tackle bad breath. If you aren't doing so already, start getting into the habit of brushing, flossing, and rinsing your teeth with mouthwash every day. This will usually take care of your entire bad breaths problem. If you are a chain smoker, you should also try and break this bad habit as soon as possible, not just for your teeth but also for your overall health. If dental hygiene isn't the problem, you should visit a dentist to identify any secondary causes that may create bad mouth odor. For example, people affected by sinus infections will need special medication to get rid of bad breath. Take action now before more people start to cringe over your bad breath.

#2 Gingivitis
Gingivitis is the most common gum disease among dental patients. If gingivitis isn't treated quickly, it will eventually move on to becoming periodontal disease, a more serious form of gum disease. Gingivitis patients are affected by inflammation in the gum. People affected by gingivitis usually won't notice at first but the pain will gradually become worse as the condition is left untreated. So what causes gingivitis? Like most dental problems, the main cause is usually poor dental hygiene. Gingivitis can also occur after a dental surgery (e.g. wisdom teeth extraction). The best way to tackle gingivitis is to see a dentist who will then prescribe the appropriate medications. So what exactly happens if you let this disease prosper? After it turns into a more severe condition (also known as Periodontal disease), you are likely to be affected by things such as tooth loss due to the reclining of the gum.

#3 Periodontal Disease
As mentioned previously, periodontal disease is the more sever state of gum disease. Instead of having inflammation around the gum, a lot of the inflammation will be focused around the teeth. During this stage, your teeth won't feel as firm as usual. The gums basically pull away from the teeth and the open pocket between the teeth and gum starts to get infected by bacteria or viruses. Not only would this affect the teeth, it would also affect the underlying bone structure that holds your jaw together. One of the most effective way of treating these kinds of gum diseases is to do a deep cleaning treatment. Through techniques like scaling, the dentist will get rid of any plaque that is allowing the bacteria to spread across the gum. For more severe cases, a laser might be required in order to get rid of the tartar or plaque. Once the plaque has been removed, you will then have to consistently take medication in order to reduce the inflammation that is affecting the gum. During this healing period, it is highly recommended that you avoid consuming food or drinks that have acidic properties.

#4 Mouth Ulcers
Regardless of whether you have a clean or dirty dental habit, mouth ulcers usually affect everyone at least once in a lifetime. Of course, mouth ulcers vary in shape and sizes. Mouth ulcers can be classified into three general categories: minor, major, and herpetiform. Minor mouth ulcers are the most common out of the three. They are extremely small in size and will only cause slight irritation whenever you move your mouth. Major ulcers are a lot more severe. They tend to be bigger than 10 mm in diameter so they can definitely do some harm while you try and eat or talk. The last type, the herpetiform, is a mix of both minor and major. In summary, a group of small ulcers merge together to form one large, irregular ulcer. So how are mouth ulcers treated? Usually, they naturally heal on their own so you just have to take precautions during the process. For example, you should avoid any food or drinks that could cause further irritations such as soft drinks and candies. You should also maintain good dental habits to get rid of any bacteria that may cause further problems on your gum.

#5 Wisdom Teeth
Last on the list is the good old wisdom teeth. The majority of us poor souls will have to go through a certain phase when we'll need all our wisdom teeth extracted. A few lucky souls won't have to experience it at all because they have no wisdom teeth to begin with! So why do we have to take our wisdom teeth out? The main reason is the impact. Wisdom teeth tend to grow towards the back molar tooth. Once it does, you will start to experience a lot of irritation and pain as the wisdom teeth pushes against the molar teeth. If you let it grow, the wisdom teeth might even form a hole in the molar teeth which is why it is ever so important that you have those teeth extracted whenever it is required. Wisdom teeth extraction isn't exactly all that painful due to the magic of local anesthetic but it will take a while for the wisdom teeth hole to recover, especially if you are dealing with an impacted wisdom teeth.

We hope you enjoyed part one of our A-Z Guide of common dental problems. Click here to read part 2 of our common dental problems guide!

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