Posts for: October, 2017

By Cesar Acosta, DMD, Family Dentistry
October 28, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures

You’re ready to have that missing tooth replaced with a dental implant or other life-like restoration. But we may first have to address another problem — moving the teeth around the missing tooth space back to where they should be.

That empty space is the primary reason those teeth are no longer in the right position. Through their attachment to the periodontal ligament that lies between them and the bone, teeth are able to move slightly over time in response to mouth changes. This same mechanism, however, may also cause teeth to “drift” toward each other across the empty space left by a missing tooth; too much drift and there won’t be enough room for the replacement tooth.

A fairly straightforward orthodontic treatment can restore drifted teeth to their original position to make room for the replacement. There is one situation, however, that can complicate this treatment — if you also have periodontal (gum) disease, a plaque-induced bacterial infection. During normal tooth movement bone dissolves (resorbs) in front of the tooth in the direction of movement, while new bone forms behind it to help stabilize the tooth in its new position. Gum disease, however, can weaken the bone around these teeth, inhibiting the natural rebuilding process of bone and connective tissue that could jeopardize the success of the orthodontic treatment.

It’s important, then, to first treat and bring the gum disease under control to restore health to both the gums and bone. It’s also just as important during orthodontic treatment to prevent another infection flare-up through renewed brushing and flossing and regular office cleanings and checkups. Choosing clear aligners over traditional braces to move the teeth could also help — unlike fixed braces that often make oral hygiene difficult, clear aligners can be removed to allow easier cleaning of teeth and gums.

Depending on your situation, the process for preparing your mouth for a tooth replacement can involve several procedures and healing time. But the end result — a brand new tooth that looks amazing — will be something to smile about.

If you would like more information on orthodontics before tooth replacement, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation.

By Cesar Acosta, DMD, Family Dentistry
October 16, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: dental implants  

Get a Second Chance at Having a Full Smile

Is your smile missing teeth? Dental implants can give you a second chance at having a full smile. Implants are the gold standard in thedental implant replacement of missing teeth. Dr. Cesar Acosta is one of the finest dentists in Turlock, CA. He offers state-of-the-art dental implants to his patients. Here are five reasons not to delay getting dental implants.

1. Beautify Your Smile

The absence of teeth can ruin a great smile. Dental implants can fill in the gaps in your smile and make you look years younger. Dental implants look and feel like real teeth. They will make your smile look natural and beautiful. Who doesn't want to look younger- or better?

2. Improved Chewing Ability

Eating can be a challenge for people with missing teeth. People who are missing teeth usually eat soft foods due to discomfort and an inability to chew properly. Dental implants act like real teeth and will restore your ability to chew food. With dental implants, you will be able to eat the foods you have avoided in the past. 

3. Improve Your Speech

The absence of teeth can make it difficult for you to speak clearly and cause your words to be slurred. Speech problems are also common with dentures. Dental implants can improve your clarity of speech. With dental implants, you will feel more confident in social situations. 

4. Prevent Dental Issues

Tooth loss can cause a host of oral health problems, including bone loss and teeth shifting. Dental implants are the only tooth replacement option that stimulates bone growth and stop bone loss. Dental implants can also prevent your existing teeth from drifting out of place.

5. Durability and Strength

Strong and stable, dental implants restore missing teeth so that they function like real teeth. According to American Academy of Implant Dentistry, dental implants can last a lifetime when properly placed and cared for. Clinical studies over the past 40 years indicate that dental implants have a success rate of about 95 percent. 

Dental implants will do your smile a world of good. Call Dr. Cesar Acosta at 209-250-2560 now to schedule a consultation in Turlock, CA. Dental implants have helped millions of people all over the world beautify their smiles, boosting their self-confidence and improving their lives. And they can do the same for you.

By Cesar Acosta, DMD, Family Dentistry
October 13, 2017
Category: Oral Health
Tags: teeth grinding   bruxism  

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.  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.”

Contact Us

Cesar Acosta DMD, Family Dentistry

(209) 250-2560
1065 Colorado Avenue Ste 3 Turlock, CA 95380