The Oral Surgeon (AKA Oral-Maxillofacial Surgeon) is a dental specialist who has attended dental school in order to become a dentist and then attends a post graduate speciality program to become proficient in procedures that a general practice dentist may not have the expertise or exposure to.
Some of these procedures would include, but are not limited to: wisdom teeth removal (most popular), repairing broken jaws, correcting jaw problems, biopsies, removal of cysts, bone grafting, placement of dental implants and repairing cleft lips and palates.
Your family dentist can perform these procedures as well, but from time to time they do refer their patients out to have an oral surgeon have a look, assess, and perform certain procedures.
From my experience, medical doctors also refer to the oral surgeon in specific situations. For instance, for my son’s broken jaw, they booked a consult appointment promptly with the on-call oral surgeon. Once the patient has been assessed and treatment has been established, they schedule an appointment. The patient shows up for surgery, and in my sons’ case, he had a metal plate placed to stabilize the jaw for approximately 6 weeks and then he had to book another surgery date to have the metal plate removed. While he was under general anaesthetic, the oral surgeon removed his wisdom teeth as well.
Here is an image of a panorex (shows us a lot of information about your bone and teeth structure) where wisdom teeth are present. There are a few factors that influence why your family dentist would recommend you go to the oral surgeon: age of patient, position of wisdom tooth in the jaw, and where the nerve runs in the lower jaw.(https://www.drmassoomi.com/blog/panorex-whats-a-panorex-why-do-i-need-that/)
For whatever the reason, for referral or visit to an Oral Surgeon, they are experts in their field and will give you all the options available for optimal care.
Braeside Dental Centre
Well it finally came: that first day of Spring, the day that the UN declared “International Happiness Day”.
The spring is known as the most lovable season of the four, and there are many reasons for this. It’s a time of rebirth, renewal, and rejuvenation. People have more “spring” in their step, more energy, more positive feelings, more creativity, and a more cheery, sunny, outlook than they have had during any other season of the year.
With more daylight and increased warmth, we all feel more energetic and excited to move our activities from inside to outside. We socialize more, which gives us a higher sense of well being. The extra sunshine means more Vitamin D, leading to better health, and lower melatonin levels, thus helping us feel less sleepy or drowsy. It’s harder to stay alert with long periods of darkness. The increased period of daylight also heightens the levels of serotonin released in our brain, which makes us feel happier. Happiness and laughter generate more endorphins, helping to boost our mood and lessen our pain levels.
All the extra fresh air and oxygen helps to lift our mental state, as well as our body’s physical state. The term “spring cleaning” generally refers to cleaning and clearing out our home’s winter clutter but it can also include opening the windows and letting out the stale air and indoor pollutants and replacing it with fresh, clean air.
Spring is the time to enjoy the emergence of animals from hibernation, the return of birds, the buds and leaves on the trees, the flowers beginning to bloom, and the arrival of baby animals. The smells of spring enhance the feelings of rebirth and rejuvenation. We begin to adjust our activities and change our diets, enjoying the more available fresh produce.
The team at Braeside hopes that spring has found you happy and healthy and we would love to see you soon for your Spring hygiene maintenance check-up.
As always, be kind.
Braeside Dental Centre
Cross contamination, as we all know, is the result of transferring bacteria or other microorganisms from one person to another (it also could be from a contaminated object to a person).
Understanding cross contamination is very important because incidents can lead to different kinds of infections from bacteria and viruses.
To better understand cross contamination, it is important to develop an understanding of the chain of infection. This includes a:
•Causative agent – could be bacteria or a virus that causes infections or disease
•Reservoir – the place where infectious agents can survive: it could be in humans, animals, or non-living agents such as water, air, or dirt
•Portal of exit – This is the gateway in which microorganisms leave the reservoir. For example: when you cough, open wounds, blood transfusions and even through the placenta from mother to baby
•Mode of transmission – This is how a pathogenic organism spreads. It could be a result of direct contact from an infected person to another via blood, or it could be indirect contact by touching contaminated objects. It could also be from a droplet transmission or airborne transmission in water, soil and even in animals
•Portal of entry – This is the gateway in which microorganisms enter the susceptible host, much like infection of an open wound
•Susceptible host - any person that lacks the ability to resist infection and will subsequently get infected
Spread of infection can be reduced with good hand hygiene, personal hygiene, and health habits.
Braeside Dental Centre
Hi, my name is Anna Brigham and I have had the joy of being a dental hygienist for 23 amazing years. In my years, I have had the opportunity to see a lot of mouths in many different conditions. However, I’ve never gotten to write a blog before! When I think about all the patients that I have had the opportunity to treat, one main factor is the same with them all: It is most important that we develop a proper treatment plan for each individual.
Each person has their own dental health concerns that need to be addressed, as they can affect the health of the whole body; We have all seen someone affected this way. A bad infection, if not treated, can cause severe health issues or even death. Some examples include: heart disease, Alzheimer’s, diabetes, cancers, or low birth weight (this list could go on for a long time because every system affects the others).
Our goal is to recognize diseases of the mouth and treat them accordingly. We stress the importance of preventative practices in order to maintain a healthy mouth. A healthy mouth means a healthy body.
Braeside Dental Centre
Yes. There are certain medical conditions in which the enamel or hard outer covering of the tooth fails to form properly (like ameliogenisis imperfecta) but fortunately, these are relatively rare.
What is more common is a complex relationship between genetics, diet, and oral heath that determines how easily you get decay.
Lets start today with genetics. Your genetics will determine things like the thickness of enamel (the protective shell) , tooth shape, and position, saliva flow and composition, the ability to buffer acid, and the shape of your jaw.
Lets see how each of these makes a difference:
Enamel thickness and hardness
Decay happens when naturally occurring bacteria in the mouth feed on sugars and starches to produce acid. This acid eats away at the enamel, eroding it until a hole or ‘cavity’ is made in the tooth. If the enamel is thicker or more acid resistant, then it will take more time for the acid to penetrate the soft inner part of the tooth known as dentin.
One of the ways to make enamel stronger or more acid resistant, is through the use of fluoride. If fluoride is available when the tooth is developing in the jaw, the body will naturally incorporate it into the tooth making it more acid resistant. Calcium absorption (and vitamin D) is important too. On the other hand, certain drugs or a high fever can cause interference with enamel development, weakening the tooth before it has even erupted.
Genetics will also influence how you teeth are shaped . In general, the smoother the teeth, the more self cleansing they are and the less likely they are to decay. Decay likes to start in the hard to reach areas like deep grooves or between the teeth. Often, teeth with deep grooves will have areas that are unprotected by enamel. That’s why you can even get decay starting before a tooth has erupted. Bacteria loves tiny crevices where it can grow undisturbed.
(Sealants and small fillings work by covering areas that don’t have enough enamel and making a smother, easier to clean surface)
Straight teeth tend to get less decay because they are easier to clean and catch less food.
The tongue, cheeks, and saliva work as a tiny tooth washing machine all day long. In the night, salivary flow decreases so teeth have less protection against bacteria growth. Saliva has enzymes for breaking down sugars, antibodies to attack bacteria, and most importantly, buffers which counteract the effects of acid. The consistency and amount of saliva will depend on genetics but also on things like diet, hormone levels (pregnacy), medications, age, and hydration.
Crowded teeth, acid reflux, sleep apnea and other breathing problems
It may seem strange to put these together, but they can be linked. If the airway is blocked by large tonsils or adenoids, then the body will switch from nose breathing to mouth breathing. Often this is most noticeable at night because the tissues and become more flacid (soft and floppy). But in more severe cases, the mouth will be held slightly open all day. For adults this means the tongue and saliva have a hard time keeping the teeth bathed in protective saliva and so we can see an increase in cavities. In some cases, when the airway is very obstructed, pressure builds up in the diaphragm and this pressure can cause some of the acid in the stomach to leak out into the esophagus (throat) and then into the mouth, creating an acid bath for the teeth. Grinding and clenching are often seen in people with sleep airway issues. Grinding helps open up the airway. (More on grinding when we talk about jaw shape)
Acid reflux during the day can also result in a particular pattern of tooth decay. Pregnancy, diet, medications and genetics can increase your susceptibility to acid reflux.
Children will overly large adenoids and tonsils will tend to have narrow palates (upper jaws and wider lower jaws) . The is because part of the tongues job is to balance the forces created by the cheeks. The cheeks and lips push the teeth inward and the tongue, an incredibly strong muscle, pushes the teeth outward. With out the tongue to push outwards, the upper jaw becomes narrow or pinched and the sinus cavity above it fails to develop fully either. It is truly amazing to see how the removal of adenoids in these children allows the teeth and jaw to spontaneously correct itself. So, if you are worried about airway issues with your child , please let us know.
Jaw shape (Grinding and Clenching)
Its estimated that about 90 percent of people will grind their teeth at one time or another. We’ve seen earlier that airway can affect grinding habits. Stress is an important component and we often see an increase in teen patients reporting jaw pain right around exam time. But for some people, grinding is just a natural every day function of the central nervous system (and this is probably genetic). Grinding causes wear to the teeth, so that the enamel is thinned (like a lathe or sander running back and forth). Clenching causes tiny cracks in the enamel like a rock chip in your windshield. Some of these chips are harmless, but others propagate and damage the structure of the tooth, creating tiny entry points for bacteria to enter inside. The shape of your jaw can also determine how much leverage or force you can put on your teeth. So, square jaws tend to generate heavier forces then tapered jaws.
The good news is that once we identify the reason for tooth decay, together then we can start to eliminate those reasons and that’s when prevention is its most effective.
Braeside Dental Centre
Over the last 30 years of practicing dentistry, I have seen many trends and changes occurring both with my patients and in our society.
One of these changes has been our understanding of sleep patterns and its affect on our overall health. Most of us know, or have heard of, the increases in prevalence of ADHD in kids, cases of depression and anxiety, weight gain and associated diets, autoimmune disorders, cancers and cardiovascular diseases, and fibromyalgia (just to name a few). I have found that there are some common threads. I would not say that they are all related to sleep alone, but interrupted sleep has been linked to all of the above. In particular, OSA (obstructed sleep apnea) or UARS (upper airway resistance syndrome) increase risk by several folds.
I have been taking a number of seminars on this topic, as a number of my patients have oral manifestations due to this resistance in airflow and it affects their daily quality of life. Please talk to me if you notice that your child or another loved one snores, has interrupted breathing patterns, difficulty sleeping, wakes up regularly at night, has gastric reflux, or seems tired during the day. In the dental office, we can see signs and symptoms in the form of grinding and worn teeth, headaches, migraines, white/red lesions on the inside of their mouth, chemical erosion on the teeth, increased incidence of caries (cavities), TMJ symptoms, and periodontal (gum) breakdown.
My hope is that we can have a meaningful discussion and find a way of increasing our loved ones’ quality of life by preventing, rather then waiting, for the end stage disease.
Braeside Dental Centre
The use of mouthwash may be an added benefit to our oral hygiene while still maintaining our daily regime of brushing and flossing, as mouthwash can reach some areas in the mouth that are difficult to access with a toothbrush. There are two types of mouthwashes: cosmetic and therapeutic. Depending on the composition of the therapeutic mouthwash, one can purchase it over the counter or by prescription. Therapeutic mouthwash can target, but is not limited to, one or more of the following:
2. Reduce or control plaque
3. tooth decay
4. bad breath
When looking for a mouthwash, the active ingredients that may be present to target the four previous conditions are the following:
Honestly though, the key to maintaining good oral hygiene is daily brushing and flossing. Whether one chooses to add mouthwash to their regime is a personal choice. There are many types of mouthwash present in the market, but those that are approved by the Canadian Dental Association have their seal approval and are likely to be a more dependable product.
If you have any questions please do not hesitate to ask any of our team members at Braeside Dental Centre. It would be our pleasure to assist you through your journey of oral health.
Braeside Dental Centre
Pregnancy is a time when you need to pay particular attention to your oral health, which is directly related to good health overall. Even if you only think that you might be pregnant, are taking any medications or have received any special advice from your physician related to your pregnacy, let your dentist know.
There are plenty of guidelines as to what pregnant women should and shouldn’t do, however as for as oral health is concerned, the 2 questions are: “How do I protect my teeth during pregnancy?” and “Is dental surgery safe during pregnancy?”
Preventive dental work, such as teeth cleaning, is essential to avoid oral infections and gum disease, both of which have been linked to preterm birth. Additionally, dental surgery, such as cavity fillings, should be carried out to reduce the chance of infection.
If you need a filling, root canal, or tooth pulled, the numbing medications used by your dentist are totally safe for both you and your baby. And, yes, it’s safe to get an x-ray during pregnancy. Your abdomen and throat will be shielded by a leaded apron and collar which minimizes any radiation exposure.
A woman’s hormone levels rise during pregnancy, which can lead to an inflammation of the gums, causing swelling and tenderness. This is called pregnancy gingivitis. Your gums may also bleed a little when you brush or floss. Left untreated, gingivitis can lead to more serious forms of gum disease. We strongly recommend that you keep your teeth and gums clean; This means brushing twice daily for a minimum of 2 minutes and flossing once daily. Always use a soft-bristled toothbrush, a gentle brushing technique, and a fluoride toothpaste (sensitive toothpaste is an option).
Pregnant women may be more prone to cavities for a number of reasons. If you’re eating more carbohydrates than usual or if your cravings lead you to sugary treats, this can cause decay. Morning sickness can also increase the amount of acid in your mouth and this can eat away at the tooth enamel. It is not a good idea to brush your teeth straight after vomiting. Instead, rinse your mouth out with water and perhaps apply some toothpaste to your teeth with your fingertip.
Some women may develop red, localized swelling on the gum during pregnancy, often during the second trimester. This is called a pregnancy epulus or pregnancy tumor. It may bleed easily and is caused by excess plaque. Don’t be alarmed - it is not cancer and will usually disappear after your baby is born.
Enjoy this special time in your life in which you will want to keep you and your baby healthy. However, just remember to look after your teeth.
I wish you a happy and healthy pregnancy!
Braeside Dental Centre
Well, love it or hate it, Valentine’s Day is right around the corner. You can almost smell the Chanel in the air. The flower shops are overflowing with all the dozen red rose’s orders and gas stations have their obligatory discount chocolates for the “One You Love”. Whether you are in a long term relationship, budding a new romance, or perhaps you are a single pringle, Valentine’s Day is about love.
Some women and men like receiving bunches of flowers or those heart shaped chocolate boxes delivered to them. Not me though, who would want a bunch of red roses? Pink roses are much prettier. If you really want to do something to show you love me, a handmade gift is way better. I mean, I would love nothing more than a handmade Tiffany diamond ring (Ha!). Regardless, if you love it or hate it, you can’t deny that when someone says they love you and presents you with a little stuffed teddy bear it makes you feel all fuzzy inside.
I fall into the single pringle category this year, which is A-Okay with me. I plan to practice the art of self-love. I vow to give myself a bit of “me time” and as they say, look after number one for a change. Sometimes we forget to look after ourselves properly because life just gets in the way, so I encourage you to take that me time this Valentine’s Day. You are worth it!
Braeside Dental Centre
There are many reasons why it is important to take proper care of your toddlers’ teeth. Firstly, it sets an important routine for them to carry out for their entire lives for maintaining good oral health. Brushing your toddlers’ teeth when they first appear, twice a day with a fluoridate toothpaste (size of a grain of rice), helps to prevent bacteria from food and sugar from eating the enamel of the teeth. Brushing also prevents gum disease like gingivitis.
Secondly, when they have their full set of teeth, brushing helps with speech, pronunciation of words and letters, as well as eating and digestion. When infants lose teeth due to cavities too early, this can also have a negative impact on the development of adult teeth. The baby teeth hold the spot for the adult teeth when they are ready to come through. If an unhealthy baby tooth needs to be pulled too early, the adult tooth may not erupt where it is supposed to, and orthodontic treatment may be required.
Lastly, poor dental health affects overall health. It can lead to infections and disease not only in the mouth, but in other areas of the body. It’s best to limit sugary food and sticky carbohydrates, such as bread and crackers for toddlers, as well as sippy cups or bottles with anything other than water.
These brushing routines can be difficult and may cause some crying, but it is in the toddlers best interest to get the proper dental care at an early age at home.
Braeside Dental Centre