Tag Archives: tooth decay

Halloween Candy doesn’t have to lead to Scary Cavities

Halloween: A Family Favorite

When recalling your childhood, you likely remember Halloween with a sense of nostalgia and excitement. From dressing up in a costume, to telling spooky stories of ghosts & ghouls, to engaging in Halloween mischief by trying to scare each other, Halloween is certainly a great time to be a kid!

So, it’s no surprise that many parents take great delight in encouraging their kids to take part in this night of thrills and chills! For kids there is no bigger thrill than trick or treating, as this tradition of going door to door and accumulating candy, may seem almost sacred among children. Despite being one of the favored activities of Halloween, when your kiddo does bring home that bag full of sugary candy, as a parent you may find yourself a bit concerned about their pearly white teeth!

While Halloween is certainly a time of fun and frights, at GPS Dental we certainly don’t want any unwelcome fears putting a damper on you or your kiddo’s Halloween festivities. Therefore, before that little one of yours puts on their costume and prepares to gather up some goodies, it may be a good idea to know which of these treats are okay for your kid’s teeth, and which ones could increase their risk of developing a cavity.  

Halloween Candy doesn’t have to be a Nightmare

Sticky candies, like gummies, caramels, Mexican candies, etc., stick to your teeth more than soft candies, like chocolate. They are much harder to brush away and should be avoided. Similarly, sour candies can slowly erode the enamel on your teeth and can cause major damage and cavities down the line.

To protect your oral health this Halloween, Dr. Skrobanek recommends chocolate for a sweet treat. Chocolate is one of the better candies because it brushes off your teeth easier than other types of candy. Pro Tip: Did you know that dark chocolate also has less sugar than milk chocolate?

The good thing is, chocolate is also popular in many people’s Halloween candy arsenals. If you’re going to have a treat on Halloween, think about the long-term effects of harmful candy.

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Pay close attention to these problem-causing treats:

  • Taffy and caramel candies, these are hard on your teeth and can increase decay.
  • Crunchy bars, such as Butterfinger bars that have hard centers.
  • Hard candies, such as sour candies with high acid levels that can hurt your teeth and break down enamel.
  • Gummy candies, such as gummy worms that can get stick in-between your teeth.
  • Lollipops, if you enjoy a lollipop, try to not bite down when eating.

Check out how each candy-type ranks, worst to best, here.

Each of these types of treats can put your teeth in greater danger, so make sure to limit the consumption of these items to preserve your oral health! It’ll save you a trip to the dentist for a cavity or broken crown.

Related Article: Best Candies for Your Teeth

Enjoy Halloween Candy in Moderation

Don’t go crazy with Halloween candy consumption – create a plan ahead of time so you can have a plan surrounding all that candy coming in. For example:

  • set the limit of houses you visit
  • fill a smaller bag
  • have your kids use their candy as a “trade in” for other rewards such as a toy, sticker, tv time, etc.

It’s so helpful to create rules and a plan before the Trick-or-Treating begins, so everyone knows their expectations and can enjoy the day! This is also the perfect opportunity to talk about the importance of limiting sugary treats and oral health.

Enjoy a Treat Around Mealtimes

Did you know that your mouth produces more saliva around mealtimes? Saliva is super helpful in washing away bacteria in your mouth, so planning on eating a sweet treat around a mealtime helps wash away bacteria even more. Don’t spiral into an oral health catastrophe this Halloween … so, don’t snack on candy throughout the day, but indulge in a sweet treat after a meal instead. The longer the sugar is in your mouth, the longer is can cause decay.

Check out More Halloween Tips HERE.

Remember to Brush After Candy

Whatever amount of sugar you or your child consumes, it’s extremely important to brush and floss after sweat treats. A brand-new toothbrush and floss as a Halloween gift are a great way to get your children excited about brushing their teeth after eating candy. Remember, candy can easily get stuck in-between teeth and cause tooth decay, cavities, and other oral health problems. Make it a family activity. After eating a few treats on Halloween, make the next activity a family trip to the sink to brush away the sugar and continue the Halloween fun!

Stay Away from Sugary Drinks

This includes soda, sports drinks and flavored waters. When teeth come in frequent contact with beverages that contain sugar, the risk of tooth decay is increased. What better beverage to make a habit than water? This Halloween, reach for the H2O to rinse those pearly whites! The best way to keep up an oral hygiene routine is to learn good hygiene and health habits.

Get more Tips for Halloween Candy HERE.

GPS Dental Can Help You Keep Your Smile Healthy, Even on Halloween!

Dental professionals are true advocates of oral care. We are not only adamant about keeping teeth clean, but we­ are also concerned with your overall dental health 365 days of the year!! Yes … Even on Halloween!!

Have a happy and safe Halloween from all of us at GPS Dental!

Dr. Gary P. Skrobanek’s experienced and friendly team at GPS Dental offers affordable dental care for all ages in San Antonio, TX area. Our Brooks City Base dentist office is conveniently located and offers early morning appointment times Monday through Friday to meet your needs. At GPS Dental, we promote dental health awareness to our patients and provide most dental services, from family and general dentistry to dental implantssleep apneaTMJ / TMD Treatmentcosmetic dentistry and much more. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Call us at 210-633-3477 to make an appointment. 

Dr. Skrobanek Works to Save Your Tooth, Not Pull It

Do you need a tooth extraction or can Dr. Skrobanek save your tooth?

Although we hope our natural teeth will last us forever, sometimes life throws a wrench in our plans and a tooth extraction is necessary for our oral health. However, at GPS Dental, we always do our best to provide you with the best dental care and make sure an extraction is the last option. If we can save your natural teeth, we will, every time. Still, let’s take a look at why a tooth extraction may be necessary and what you can expect.

Learn More from WebMD about Pulling a Tooth

Reasons for a Tooth Extraction

Damage – probably the most common reason for a tooth extraction is a damaged tooth that’s beyond simple repairs. Damage can often occur from:

  • Decay or infection: If a tooth’s decay penetrates the inside (pulp) of a tooth, then a root canal is often the first step to restore the health of the tooth. However, if antibiotics don’t cure the infection, then an extraction may be the next step. This is necessary for the health of your mouth. Periodontal disease will sometimes cause the loosening of a tooth, and the tooth may need to be pulled if it’s extremely loose, or if the tooth is at risk for infection.
  • Crowded mouth: Sometimes we have to pull teeth to make room in the mouth. This happens sometimes with wisdom teeth to eliminate crowding. Or, if a tooth cannot break through the gumline, it will be best to pull it.

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What to Expect

Once a tooth extraction is decided as necessary and we cannot save your tooth, there are a few steps for a successful extraction. A thorough examination will be performed and X-rays will be taken. Dr. Skrobanek wants to make 100% sure that your tooth must be pulled before performing an extraction. If your tooth can be saved by other methods, then those will definitely be looked into instead.

There are two types of extraction – simple and surgical. Simple extractions involve a local anesthetic to numb the area. We then use a tool called an elevator to loosen the tooth and extract it. Surgical extractions are what they sound – surgical. You will be unconscious during the procedure and the tooth will be extracted surgically. A small incision will be made around the tooth to remove it. Recovery often takes a few days.

Learn More on What to Expect from a Tooth Extraction.

Dr. Skrobanek at GPS Dental Wants to Save Your Tooth

As you can see, there are many reasons your tooth may need to be pulled; however, one thing that can help you keep all of your natural teeth healthy and in place is prioritizing your dental health. (Learn how GPS Dental is Keeping You Healthy with Extra Safety Precautions.) Brush and floss daily and make sure to visit your dentist every 6 months for a dental exam and cleaning. Dr. Skrobanek will help treat any cavities or decay, before your tooth runs out of options and needs to be pulled.

Dr. Gary P. Skrobanek’s experienced and friendly team at GPS Dental offers affordable dental care for all ages in San Antonio, TX area. Our Brooks City Base dentist office is conveniently located and offers early morning appointment times Monday through Friday to meet your needs. At GPS Dental, we promote dental health awareness to our patients and provide most dental services, from family and general dentistry to dental implantssleep apneaTMJ / TMD Treatmentcosmetic dentistry and much more. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Call us at 210-633-3477 to make an appointment.

Experiencing Tooth Pain? When it’s time to visit the dentist

Experiencing tooth pain is no small thing. In fact, tooth pain can ruin your day or put you in a bad mood. Sharp pain can make it difficult to concentrate at school or work, and extreme sensitivity can ruin mealtimes. What causes these frustrating tooth pains? Let’s take a closer look at the top five reasons for tooth pain and see when it’s time to visit your dentist!

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Top 5 Reasons for a Toothache

  • Sensitivity: Has a certain tooth developed sensitivity to cold and/or hot temperatures? Tooth sensitivity can happen for a myriad of reasons and is often the indicator of an underlying symptom, so it’s important to let your dentist know if you’re experiencing extreme sensitivity. There are many treatments that can help, such as using a sensitive toothpaste. 
  • Gum Disease: Gum disease is as worrisome as it sounds and affects many adults every year. Gum disease, or periodontitis, is when bacteria eat away at your gums. This is most often caused from bad dental hygiene and excess bacteria in the mouth. Gum disease can make your gums feel tender, or sometimes bleed, and cause tooth pain. The earlier you catch gum disease and begin treatment and better dental hygiene, the better. If you notice a toothache and swollen or red gums, come in and see your dentist quickly for an examination.
  • Decay: Plaque and bacteria in the mouth do more than just bother your gums, they also begin to dissolve your enamel on your teeth. When your enamel gets broken down, your teeth aren’t as strong anymore and are more susceptible to weak spots and pain. When bacteria concentrate in an area, you can experience a cavity/holes in the teeth. When this happens, your teeth may feel sore and sensitive.
  • Dental Abscess: Also caused from an excess of bacteria, an abscess forms when bacteria builds up inside your tooth’s pulp. This causes an infection and leads to swelling and soreness, or a toothache. Pus can also develop around the tooth, so it’s important to visit your dentist right away if you see these symptoms. An x-ray can confirm the diagnosis and often antibiotics are used to fight the infection.
  • Chipped Tooth: Although enamel is extremely tough and durable, sometimes we experience a chipped or broken tooth whether it be from an injury or whatnot. Try to not chew on ice, pens, open packages with your teeth, and so on to prevent any breakage. A crack in the tooth can cause extreme sensitivity and pain. Sometimes, a crack may not be clearly visible to you and may be in the back area of the tooth. If you think you may have a crack, visit your dentist right away. Treatment options often include crowns and root canals, depending on severity.

More reasons for a toothache: https://www.health.com/condition/pain/tooth-pain-causes

GPS Dental Can Get You OUT of Pain!!

If you’re experiencing a dental emergency, remember … Emergency Dental Appointments are Available at GPS Dental. Please give us a call at 210-633-3477 and let us know you are experiencing tooth pain.

Related Article: Toothache Causes: My Tooth is THROBBING!! What do I DO?

Dr. Gary P. Skrobanek’s experienced and friendly team at GPS Dental offers affordable dental care for all ages in San Antonio, TX area. Our Brooks City Base dentist office is conveniently located and offers early morning appointment times Monday through Friday to meet your needs. At GPS Dental, we promote dental health awareness to our patients and provide most dental services, from family and general dentistry to dental implantssleep apneaTMJ / TMD Treatmentcosmetic dentistry and much more. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Call us at 210-633-3477 to make an appointment

“Mouth Mask” is more than Stinky Breath: Gum Disease on the RISE

“Mouth Mask” is more than Stinky Breath: Tooth Decay & Gum Disease is on the RISE!!

Did you know that stinky breath behind your face mask could be more than a simple, embarrassing problem? Today, more and more dentists are seeing a rise in gum disease. A term coined “mask mouth” is a contributing factor to the increase in oral health problems. Thankfully, there are many ways to treat this and keep mask mouth at bay! Let’s dive into some helpful tips and information.

Mask Mouth: Learn More about the seriously stinky side effects HERE.

Related Article: What is that SMELL?? It may be more than bad breath.

Here’s How to Conquer Mask Mouth

Bad breath is often a sign that something isn’t quite right. When we wear our masks, we may breathe through our mouths more and dry out our mouths. While this may not seem like an issue, when we dry out our mouths, we leave them more susceptible to bacteria growth. When bacteria grows in our mouth, we can experience things like cavities and gum disease. Saliva is a huge multitasker in our mouths and it constantly keeps bacteria at bay. When we lose saliva production, we lose our biggest bacteria fighter.

There are definitely some changes we can make to reduce the symptoms of mask mouth and keep our teeth cleaner and less prone to decay.

  • Watch your diet: Certain foods can make our breath stink, so when we’re wearing a mask it’s extra important to think about what you’re consuming. Try to avoid coffee, garlic, and onions and try swishing with water after eating.
  • Freshen up. Brush your teeth twice a day and floss once a day. Make sure you’re brushing your teeth correctly and try keeping mouthwash on hand to fight bad breath and bacteria in-between your brushings. Chewing sugar-free gum can also help with this. It also might be time for a new, fresh toothbrush.
  • Stay hydrated. Drink water throughout the day and try to avoid alcohol, coffee, and sugary drinks, which can cause dehydration and buildup of bacteria.
  • Use a clean mask. Replace your mask often and clean between wearing.
  • Take fresh-air breaks. Try and take a few breaks throughout the day and breath fresh air through your nose.

If your breath smells unpleasant, it could mean that there are germs and bacteria that you need to get rid of. Learn More about how to take care of your mouth behind a face mask HERE.

Mask Mouth Symptoms

Curious if you’re experiencing mask mouth? Here’s the most common symptoms to be aware of.

  • Bad Breath and Dry Mouth: One of the most common signs of mask mouth is bad breath. If you’re breathing through your mouth while wearing a mask, you’re drying out your mouth and causing bad breath. This can also cause dry lips. Saliva is such a great tool that our body already produces to help keep the germs out of our mouth, so when our mouth becomes dry and we lose saliva production, we build more bad-breath bacteria in the mouth. Less saliva in the mouth also means we are more prone to tooth decay and infections.  So, when we are wearing our mask often and experience dry mouth, we’re advancing or progressing tooth decay.
  • Bleeding gums: Another symptom of mask mouth is bleeding or swollen gums. This also comes from an excess of bacteria and plaque in the mouth.

Oral Bacteria and Your Smile

Healthy teeth are about more than just a pretty smile… and what does oral bacteria have to do with a pretty smile?

Your oral health has a major effect on the overall health of your body, not just in your mouth. By maintaining healthy teeth and gums, you can make your body healthier from head to toe. If not, tooth decay, gum disease, and oral infections can be the nasty result.

Learn more in this article: Oral Bacteria: Are Healthy Teeth Just About a Pretty Smile?

Related Article: Gum Disease: Can a Simple Cavity turn into Gum Disease?

Dr. Gary P. Skrobanek’s experienced and friendly team at GPS Dental offers affordable dental care for all ages in San Antonio, TX area. Our Brooks City Base dentist office is conveniently located and offers early morning appointment times Monday through Friday to meet your needs. At GPS Dental, we promote dental health awareness to our patients and provide most dental services, from family and general dentistry to dental implantssleep apneaTMJ / TMD Treatmentcosmetic dentistry and much more. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Call us at 210-633-3477 to make an appointment. 

Toothache Causes: My tooth is throbbing! What do I do?

Toothaches are tricky — they can feel like a minor tinge or they can cause crippling pain. That’s why we want to share some common toothache causes, their symptoms and when you should seek help from your dentist.

What is the definition of a toothache?

Pain or inflammation in or around the tooth, often caused by tooth infection or decay.

What are common toothache causes?

A toothache can have causes that are not due to underlying disease. Toothache causes may include getting something stuck in between the teeth, flossing, biting into something hard, or braces. Remember, in children, tooth pain is a regular part of the developmental process.

Common Toothache Causes:

  • Tooth decay
  • Inflammation of tooth pulp
  • Tooth fracture or broken tooth
  • Sensitive Teeth
  • Damaged filling
  • Abscessed tooth
  • Infected gums or gum disease
  • Impacted tooth
  • Repetitive motions, such as grinding teeth or chewing gum
  • Sinus congestion or infection (non-dental related issues)

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Common Symptoms of a Toothache:

  • Tooth pain that may be constant, throbbing, or sharp
  • Tooth pain while chewing
  • Pain results only when pressure is applied to the tooth, for some people
  • Foul-tasting drainage from the tooth infection
  • Cold or hot sensitivity when eating or drinking
  • Swelling in your jaw or around the tooth
  • Bleeding or discharge from around a tooth or gums
  • Headache or fever
  • Trauma or injury to the area

When do I need to see a Dentist About my Toothache?

We recommend seeing your dentist as soon as possible about your toothache if:

  • Your toothache is severe
  • You have consistent tooth pain that lasts longer than 1 or 2 days
  • Inflammation increases
  • Swelling occurs around your jaw or face
  • Redness occurs around the gums or your gums are bleeding
  • You have an earache or fever
  • If you notice that a tooth is cracked, broken, or chipped
  • You experience pain upon opening your mouth wide
  • Dull, persistent pain can be a sign of something that will get worse if not treated
  • You’ve suffered a recent trauma to your face or mouth

How do I stop my tooth from throbbing?

Try these self-care tips for some temporary relief, while you’re waiting to see your dentist:

  • Rinse your mouth with warm salt water
  • Floss gently to remove built up plaque or food in between teeth
  • Apply a cold compress to your cheek or jaw
  • Take an over-the-counter pain medication, like ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin), acetaminophen (Tylenol), and aspirin can relieve minor pain
  • Numbing gels or pastes, such as benzocaine, can help to dull the pain

When I Go to the Dentist for a Toothache, what happens?

Your dentist will conduct a dental exam first. He or she will ask you questions about the pain, such as:

  • when the pain started
  • how severe it is
  • where the pain is located
  • what makes the pain worse and what makes it better
  • does the pain wake you up in the middle of the night

Your dentist will examine:

  • your mouth, teeth and gums
  • tongue, jaws and throat
  • sinuses, nose, ears and neck

X-rays may be taken as well as other tests, depending on what your dentist suspects is causing your toothache.

What Treatments Are Available for a Toothache?

Treatment for a toothache depends on the cause or source of pain. If a cavity is causing the toothache, your dentist will remove the decay or infection, fill the cavity or possibly extract the tooth (only if there is no way to save the tooth).

A root canal may be necessary if the cause of the toothache is from an infection of the tooth’s nerve. Bacteria that have worked their way into the inner areas of the tooth cause that type of infection. Your dentist may prescribe an antibiotic, if there is swelling or fever in the jaw to get rid of the infection.

Related Articles:

Root Canal Treatment: Root Canal Myths Debunked

Tooth Extraction: Reasons for Pulling Teeth

How Can Toothaches Be Prevented?

Tooth decay causes most toothaches, so following a good oral hygiene routine can prevent most toothaches.

Practices of good oral hygiene consist of:

  • brush teeth twice daily with a fluoride toothpaste
  • floss daily
  • rinse once or twice each day with an antiseptic mouthwash
  • see your dentist twice a year for professional exam and cleaning

Gently brushing your teeth with a soft-bristle brush and fluoride toothpaste will remove the bacteria and plaque that are toothache causes to begin with. In addition to these practices, ask your dentist about fluoride treatments and sealant applications and make healthy snack, food, and beverage choices that are low in sugar.

Related Articles:

Why is it important to schedule your Dental Exam Twice Each Year?

Dental Health Services for Your Children

Dr. Gary P. Skrobanek and his experienced, friendly team at GPS Dental offer affordable family dentistry and gentle dental care in the San Antonio, TX area. Our office is conveniently located and offers early morning appointment times Monday through Friday to meet your needs. At GPS Dental, we provide most dental services, from family and general dentistry to dental implantssleep apneaTMJ / TMD Treatmentcosmetic dentistry and much more. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Call us at (210) 633-3477 to make an appointment.

Root Canal Treatment: We’re Answering Your Questions

Have you heard scary things about getting a root canal treatment? We can help ease your fears and shed some light on this common treatment that helps relieve the tooth pain for so many of our patients.

Typically, we get a lot of questions from our patients. For example: What is a root canal? What are the symptoms? How can I avoid needing a root canal treatment? And … Is it gonna hurt?

First, here are some interesting root canal statistics:

  • A root canal performed on any tooth (front or back) with a nerve
  • Most teeth are fixed with root canal therapy with a 95 percent success rate
  • A root canal is a standard and very common procedure
  • Since the roots aren’t necessary for the tooth to function, they can be removed
  • There is only one main purpose for the tooth’s nerve: to provide the feeling or sensation of cold and hot
  • Nearly 15 million root canals are performed each year in the United States
  • Most teeth fixed with root canal therapy can last a lifetime
  • Some roots have more than one root canal, but all have at least one canal

Let’s get started!

What is a Root Canal?

The term “root canal” is used to refer to two different things:

  1. the dental procedure used to remove infected material and relieve root canal pain
  2. the inner part (passages) of the tooth between the pulp and tooth roots, containing nerves, blood vessels and connective tissue

Today we’re going to talk about the dental procedure.

It’s pretty straight forward … a root canal treatment is an attempt to save your tooth after your nerve has been exposed to bacteria from a crack or has become permanently aggravated. And it will get you out of pain!

Related Article: Will my dentist pull my tooth?

A root canal treatment is required when a tooth is badly decayed or seriously infected. To protect the tooth, the nerve and its surrounding tooth pulp are removed, and the tooth is permanently sealed or closed. The interior of the tooth is left virtually resistant to future decay.

What do these terms mean?

  • Dental Pulp: is the soft substance in the center of the tooth that consists of the nerve, blood vessels, and connective tissue.
  • Pulp Chamber: is the hollow part in the center of the tooth that contains the pulp and continues down canals that extend through the roots of teeth and into the bone around the tooth.

What causes a root canal?

DECAY that leads to INFECTION causes your tooth to need a root canal treatment.

Here are the two main causes:

Decay: Decay (commonly referred to as a cavity) is the main reason patients need to have a root canal treatment. If a cavity becomes large enough before it is treated, it can enter your pulp chamber or nerve. If bacteria enter this chamber, it causes severe pain, and will cause an infection.

As a result, a root canal is needed to save your tooth and reduce pain.

Trauma: If your tooth cracks or breaks, there’s a chance you’ll need a root canal treatment, because trauma to your tooth can expose your pulp chamber, damage your nerve and cause severe pain.

Again, the nerve will need to be removed to salvage your tooth.

If I need a root canal, what symptoms will I be experiencing?

Sometimes, a person may ignore the symptoms for a while. It takes some time for this type of infection to take root and they can be completely avoided; that’s why it’s important to schedule regular dental appointments.

In other cases, a person may show no symptoms.

These symptoms indicate a root canal may be needed:

  • Severe toothache pain from chewing or putting pressure on the area
  • Your tooth may start to hurt in the middle of the night; you wake up with severe tooth pain
  • Your tooth hurts longer than it should after exposure to hot or cold temperatures
  • Drainage, tenderness and swelling surrounding the tooth, in the nearby bone, gum tissues or lymph nodes
  • A “rotten” taste in your mouth
  • Discoloration or darkening of the tooth
  • Dental abscess

What you should know about a dental abscess:

  • An abscess is a small, pimple-like bump on the gums near the area of tooth pain
  • Sometimes it causes significant swelling of the jaw, cheek, or throat.
  • Bleeding or swelling around the tooth may occur if you have an abscess.
  • If this swelling is noticed, treatment needs are urgent, and you need to contact GPS Dental for a dental emergency appointment.

IMPORTANT: if you’re experiencing tooth pain, call to schedule an appointment with Dr. Skrobanek immediately!!

Related Article: Reasons to have a root canal: What symptoms should I look for?

Do all toothaches require a root canal treatment?

Sometimes you may feel intense tooth pain that makes you think you need root canal treatment, but the pain is a symptom of another problem requiring a completely different treatment. Such as:

  • Sinus congestion can produce pressure around the roots of the upper teeth and cause pain upon chewing, which mimics root canal pain. 
  • Gum disease can also mimic the throbbing pain around teeth that can feel like root canal pain.
  • Exposed root surfaces as a result of gum recession can mimic cold sensitivity.
  • Jaw pain can either be an indication of pain in the jaw joint or pain referred from a tooth needing a root canal.

Can I avoid needing a root canal treatment?

Here are some common causes and how to avoid needing a root canal:

Failure to Brush or Floss Regularly

Prevention is key! Brushing your teeth (twice a day) is the most important thing you can do each day to avoid tooth decay is brushing your teeth.

Cavities and root canals are prevented the same way … by brushing your teeth consistently. Brushing will interrupt the growth of bacteria that turns into plaque.

Flossing is essential too, because it helps clean hard-to-reach areas in between your teeth and remove any food particles left behind.

Forgetting to Visit the Dentist

Millions of people face some anxiety about going to the dentist. At GPS Dental in San Antonio, TX, we make it easy for you. A compassionate, experienced dental team can help spot early warning signs of decay, infection and other issues you might not notice on your own. Treating a cavity early, before it leads to decay, is one of the easiest ways to avoid needing a root canal treatment.

Related Article: Why is it important to visit the dentist twice a year?

Long-Term Gum Disease

Periodontal disease, also referred to as “gum disease” is a long-term infection process that attacks the soft tissue that supports, binds, and provides blood flow to your teeth. If you have symptoms like discoloration or bleeding in your gums, it could mean gum disease, which can spread throughout your mouth and needs immediate attention.

Related Article: Can a simple cavity turn into Gum Disease?

What is root canal procedure?

During a root canal treatment or procedure, the infected pulp and nerve are completely removed. Then, the tooth’s interior is cleaned and permanently sealed. A dental crown is then placed on top of the affected tooth to make sure it maintains its proper function — chewing.

Will I need a dental crown after having a root canal treatment?

The short answer is: Yes.

You will need a dental crown after your root canal treatment. A dental crown is a tooth-shaped cap that will be placed over a root canal-treated tooth at a second appointment (usually a week later). It is designed protect the remaining tooth structure and continue the function of the molar teeth, which is chewing food. This will also guard against any future tooth pain.

Will a root canal treatment be painful?

Root canal treatments have gotten a bad reputation as a painful procedure; however, it can be less painful than having a cavity filled. The real pain you experience is typically BEFORE you get a root canal treatment completed.

Once your procedure is complete, you will be OUT of Pain!

Be sure to follow a regular oral hygiene routine after your root canal treatment to maintain your crown and avoid future issues. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and a toothpaste designed specifically for sensitive teeth, If you notice increased tooth sensitivity after a root canal.

If you are suffering from a toothache, we can help!

Suffering from the pain of a toothache is an awful way to live … We want our patients to be able to go about their day, PAIN FREE!! If you or one of your family members is in pain, please call to schedule an emergency dental appointment with Dr. Skrobanek. We want to make sure to treat you as quickly as possible.

Dr. Gary P. Skrobanek’s experienced and friendly team at GPS Dental offers affordable dental care for all ages in San Antonio, TX area. Our Brooks City Base dentist office is conveniently located and offers early morning appointment times Monday through Friday to meet your needs. At GPS Dental, we promote dental health awareness to our patients and provide most dental services, from family and general dentistry to dental implantssleep apneaTMJ / TMD Treatmentcosmetic dentistry and much more. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Call us at 210-633-3477 to make an appointment.

Oral Disease: Top 3 Oral Diseases that could Impact Your Health

Headline: The top three oral diseases that could impact your health

When it comes to your mouth, it’s important to know what you’re up against in order to stay on top of your oral health and prevent future issues. According to the CDC, oral health includes the “teeth, gums, and the entire oral-facial system that allows us to smile, speak, and chew.” There are three common oral diseases that can greatly affect your oral health:

  • Dental caries (cavities)
  • Periodontitis
  • Oral cancer

By knowing the causes and prevention methods for each of these three diseases, you are one step closer to avoiding these oral problems and increasing not only your oral health, but your overall wellbeing.

Related article: https://www.cdc.gov/oralhealth/conditions/index.html

Oral Disease: Dental Caries

Dental caries, also known as cavities or tooth decay, are the most common dental problem in both children and adults. Caries affect up to two thirds of adolescents, and 60-90% of school age children, according to statistics.

Specifically, dental caries are caused by numerous factors such as:

  • Consuming an excess of sugar
  • Not thoroughly cleaning the teeth
  • Having a high number of bacteria/plaque in the mouth

These factors can all lead to tooth decay or holes in the surface of your teeth. Thankfully, dental caries are also easily preventable. By brushing twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste, using a fluoride-based mouthwash, frequently flossing, and implementing a reduction in sugar intake will make a huge difference in your oral health and will greatly reduce your risk of oral disease.

Oral Disease: Periodontitis

Periodontitis is a gum disease caused by the inflammation of the gums and deterioration of the soft tissue surrounding the bones that support your teeth. Similar to dental caries, poor oral hygiene and a high concentration of plaque leads to a higher risk of periodontitis. However, there are other factors that also increase one’s risk, such as diabetes, a weakened immune system, smoking tobacco, and obesity.

Regular dental checkups are a must in order to catch this oral disease early for treatment. If left untreated, periodontitis can make the gums inflamed and infected, leading to tooth extractions. So, make sure to keep up with your regular hygiene routine of brushing, flossing, and getting professional teeth cleanings to stay clear of this disease.

Oral Disease: Oral Cancer

Oral cancer is any type of cancer that forms in the mouth. It’s important to be diligent with your symptoms, and immediately let your doctor know if you are experiencing indicators such as: a sore that doesn’t heal, painful swallowing, a white or red patch in your mouth, or mouth pain. Like other types of cancers, oral cancer occurs when cells around the mouth mutate and form abnormal cells. It’s also important to catch this oral disease early on to increase the chances of ridding the cancer and improving your health.

Unlike dental caries and periodontitis, where frequent brushing and flossing will greatly decrease risk, there is no known prevention for oral cancer. However, according to Mayo Clinic, there are some steps to take to reduce your risk of developing this cancer, such as reducing alcohol and tobacco consumption.

To learn more about risks and prevention, please visit: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/mouth-cancer/symptoms-causes/syc-20350997

Knowing how to prevent these three common oral diseases can make such a huge impact on the future of your teeth. Knowledge is power! Don’t forget to check back over our tips and prevention techniques to reach the best level of oral health.

GPS Dental Can Help

Dental professionals are true advocates of oral care. We are not only adamant about keeping teeth clean, but we­ are also concerned with your overall dental health. Checking for defects, abnormalities, and indications of severe issues in the bone, teeth, or gums are also at the forefront of our practice. Similarly, offering advice on how to properly care for teeth and correct certain habits is also a part of the patient education that we offer. Should you be looking for a dentist that is serious about oral care, contact our dental office to book your dental appointment.

Dr. Gary P. Skrobanek is a dental implant dentist and his experienced, friendly team at GPS Dental offer affordable family dentistry and gentle dental care in the San Antonio, TX area. Our Brooks City Base dentist office is conveniently located and offers early morning appointment times Monday through Friday to meet your needs. At GPS Dental, we provide most dental services, from family and general dentistry to dental implantssleep apneaTMJ / TMD Treatmentcosmetic dentistry and much more. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Call us at (210) 633-3477 to make an appointment.

Holiday Treats – If You Sip & Snack All Day, You’ll Risk Tooth Decay!

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During the holiday season, everyone finds pleasure in being among family and friends. It is a time to be jolly and engage in the holiday’s festivities. This celebratory period is marked by treats, festive drinks, and a vast array of foods.

Almost everyone finds it hard to ignore the sweets and delicious foods that are displayed for all to enjoy. As individuals socialize, snacking and sipping is inevitable. You don’t have to stop the impulse to snack entirely but be aware of how eating and drinking frequently can have a harmful impact on your oral health.

Tooth Decay: Sweet Treats

Sweets are practically a necessity for the holiday season. Chocolates, brownies, fudge, candy canes, cookies, cakes, fruit cake, and figgy pudding are just some of the treats that people expect to see on their tables. They are delicious, and they are staples of this joyous time. However, indulging can be horrible on the teeth because sugar creates a breeding ground for bacteria in the mouth.

The high sugar content found in these foods provides sustenance for oral bacteria. As bacteria and sugar react, they produce acids that attack the teeth. As these sugars remain on your teeth and are steadily introduced to your mouth throughout the day, you leave your teeth and gums vulnerable to decay.

Related Article: Dental Health Awareness: Gum Disease & Heart Disease

Tooth Decay: Sugary Drinks

Hot cocoa with various toppings, fruit punches, cocktails, wine, and other festive drinks all contain sugar. As these are consumed with other sweet substances, they accelerate the process that causes tooth decay. They cling to teeth and the acid produced through the interaction with bacteria, strip away enamel. When this layer of protection is penetrated, teeth become weak and susceptible to cavities.

Alcohol is known for its unpleasant effect on the body. Its sugar content coupled with its dehydrating properties, make alcohol risky for your oral health. As alcohol is consumed, it clings to the teeth, feeding existing bacteria. It also causes dehydration by slowing down the production of saliva and inhibiting its ability to flush away bacteria and food or drink particles, causing them to linger in the mouth.  Staining also results from alcohol consumption.

What Can I Do to Avoid the Negative Effects of Alcohol and Sugar on My Oral Health?

Sweets can be consumed during the holiday season, but adopting specific habits can help to counteract the effects of holiday treats on teeth. For instance, rinsing your mouth between indulgences, as well as using mini toothbrushes to clear away foods from teeth can be very beneficial. Drink water between alcoholic drinks to prevent dry mouth (and stay hydrated), wash away bacteria and restore moisture. Last but not least, brushing teeth twice a day, flossing, and using mouthwash should be implemented to guarantee the removal of food and sugars, which can cause plaque build-up and tooth decay.

GPS Dental Offers Holiday Cleanings

At GPS Dental, we understand that sweets are some of the traditional items that many expect to see and eat during the holiday season. However, eating them in moderation or adopting practices that aid in neutralizing the effects of sugar are strongly recommended.

After the holiday season has passed, we encourage you to come in for a check-up and cleaning. We can work with you to ensure that no adverse changes have occurred in your mouth, impacting your oral health. Contact the office of GPS Dental to book an appointment.

 

Dr. Gary P. Skrobanek’s experienced and friendly team at GPS Dental offers family dentistry for all ages in San Antonio, TX area. Our Brooks City Base dentist office is conveniently located and offers early morning appointment times Monday through Friday to meet your needs. At GPS Dental, we promote dental health awareness to our patients and provide most dental services, from family and general dentistry to dental implantssleep apneaTMJ / TMD Treatmentcosmetic dentistry and much more. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Call us at 210-633-3477 to make an appointment.