Posts for: March, 2018

By Midtown Dental Studio, L.L.C.
March 28, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures

If you press your tongue against your teeth, unless something is badly wrong they won't budge. In fact, your teeth are subjected to a fair amount of pressure each day as you chew and eat, and yet they remain firmly in place.

But there's a deeper reality—your teeth do move! No, it's not a paradox—the gum and bone tissues that hold your teeth in place allow for slight, imperceptible changes in the teeth's position. Their natural ability to move is also the basis for orthodontics. Here are 3 more facts you may not know about your teeth's natural ability to move.

Teeth are always on the move. Teeth are held firmly within the jawbone by an elastic gum tissue called the periodontal ligament and a thin layer of bony-like material called cementum. In response to pressure changes, though, the bone dissolves on the side of the teeth in the direction of pressure and then rebuilds behind it, solidifying the teeth's new position, a process that happens quite slowly and incrementally. And it will happen for most of us—some studies indicate more than 70% of people will see significant changes in their bite as they age.

Orthodontics works with the process. Orthodontic appliances like braces or clear aligners apply targeted pressure in the direction the orthodontist intends the teeth to move—the natural movement process does the rest. In the case of braces, a thin metal wire is laced through brackets bonded to the front of the teeth and then anchored, typically to the back teeth. The orthodontist incrementally tightens the wire against its anchors over time, encouraging tooth movement in response to the pressure. Clear aligners are a series of removable trays worn in succession that gradually accomplish the same outcome.

Watch out for the rebound. That nice, straight smile you've gained through orthodontics might not stay that way. That's because the same mechanism for tooth movement could cause the teeth to move back to their former positions, especially right after treatment. To avoid this outcome, patients need to wear a retainer, an appliance that holds or "retains" the teeth in their new positions. Depending on their individual situations and age, patients may have to wear a retainer for a few months, years or from then on.

If you would like more information on orthodontic treatment, 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 “The Importance of Orthodontic Retainers.”

By Midtown Dental Studio, L.L.C.
March 13, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures

Via a recent Instagram post, pop diva Ariana Grande became the latest young celebrity to publicly acknowledge a dental milestone: having her wisdom teeth removed. The singer of hits such as “Break Free” and “Problem” posted an after-surgery picture of herself (wearing her signature cat-eye eyeliner), with a caption addressed to her teeth: “Peace out, final three wisdom teeth. It’s been real.”

With the post, Grande joined several other celebs (including Lily Allen, Paris Hilton and Emile Hirsch) who have shared their dental surgery experience with fans. Will "wisdom teeth removal" become a new trending topic on social media? We aren’t sure — but we can explain a bit about the procedure, and why many younger adults may need it.

Technically called the “third molars,” wisdom teeth usually begin to emerge from the gums between the ages of 17 and 25 — presumably, around the same time that a certain amount of wisdom emerges. Most people have four of these big molars, which are located all the way in the back of the mouth, on the left and right sides of the upper and lower jaws.

But when wisdom teeth begin to appear, there’s often a problem: Many people don’t have enough space in their jaws to accommodate them. When these molars lack sufficient space to fully erupt (emerge), they are said to be “impacted.” Impacted teeth can cause a number of serious problems: These may include pain, an increased potential for bacterial infections, periodontal disease, and even the formation of cysts (pockets of infection below the gum line), which can eventually lead to tooth and bone loss.

In most cases, the best treatment for impacted wisdom teeth is extraction (removal) of the problem teeth. Wisdom tooth extraction is a routine, in-office procedure that is usually performed under local anesthesia or “conscious sedation,” a type of anesthesia where the patient remains conscious (able to breathe normally and respond to stimuli), but is free from any pain or distress. Anti-anxiety medications may also be given, especially for those who are apprehensive about dental procedures.

So if you find you need your wisdom teeth extracted, don’t be afraid to “Break Free” like Ariana Grande did; whether you post the results on social media is entirely up to you. If you would like more information about wisdom tooth extraction, please call our office to schedule a consultation. You can learn more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Wisdom Teeth” and “Removing Wisdom Teeth.”

By Midtown Dental Studio, L.L.C.
March 05, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures

Dental implants are a common, powerful, and permanent dental procedure which fall under both the cosmetic and restorative dentistry dental implantsumbrellas. However, while you may have heard of this treatment, you may not understand what exactly it entails or even what dental implants are or what they do. Find out more about the basics of dental implants with Dr. Travon Holt at Midtown Dental Studio in Midtown Atlanta, GA.

What are dental implants?

Dental implants are a way to replace a missing tooth, several missing teeth in a row, or even an entire arch of teeth. However, unlike traditional bridges or dentures, this tooth replacement option is permanent, non-removable, and implanted right into the jawbone of your mouth, ensuring that it remains in place, functions naturally, and blends subtly in with your smile.

Can I benefit from a dental implant?

Patients missing one or more teeth can benefit from a dental implant. However, not every patient is a good candidate for this procedure. Dental implants require an adequate amount of bone in which to implant, meaning that tooth loss-related bone atrophy should be minimal and too much atrophy could mean that the patient requires a bone graft procedure or cannot receive an implant at all. Additionally, patients should have an excellent at-home oral care routine and be committed to twice-yearly preventative dental examinations and cleanings.

Dental Implants Vs. Other Tooth Replacement Options

Dental implants are permanent and non-removable. A traditional bridge or denture requires removal at night while sleeping and, in most cases, soaking in a cleaning solution while not in use. Implants do not require any removal or soaking and are as easy to care for as your natural teeth. Simply brush twice a day and floss at least once, while seeing your dentist twice a year for examinations and cleanings. A dental implant is the closest you can get to a natural tooth, looking and feeling just like your other teeth and functioning just as well.

Dental Implants in Midtown Atlanta, GA

If you think a dental implant could be a good course of treatment for your smile, you should consult with your dentist to be sure that this procedure could best benefit your teeth. For more information on dental implants, please contact Dr. Travon Holt at Midtown Dental Studio in Midtown Atlanta, GA. Call (404) 937-6940 to schedule your appointment for a dental implant consultation with Dr. Holt today!