13 Aug 2017

Crack Down on Cracked Tooth Syndrome

Cracked tooth syndrome (CTS), also known as cracked cusp syndrome or split tooth syndrome, is a painful condition that results from a crack in one of your teeth. CTS can mean anything from a tiny hairline split in the crown to a fracture that goes all the way to the root. If you have a nasty toothache and remember biting down on something hard, it’s time to call Dr. David Case. Don’t worry though, because the dental professionals at Family Dental Health are committed to giving you the best oral care that Portland has to offer. To find out more about cracked tooth syndrome, read on.

Symptoms of Cracked Tooth Syndrome

Although this condition can vary a little bit for everyone, here are some common signs you may have cracked tooth or cracked cusp syndrome:

  • Biting down in a certain area causes sharp pain
  • The pain goes away shortly after you have finished chewing or biting
  • You have localized sensitivity to hot or cold, and sticky, sweet, or sour foods
  • You find that you have begun favoring one side of your mouth for chewing denser food or all food
  • You notice sharp, localized pain while biting and immediately afterwards (indicating the opening and closing of the crack)

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27 Jul 2017

Prevention vs. Treatment of Oral Health

The World Health Organization defines health as “A state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.”

Sadly, in our fast-paced culture, many of us settle for less-than-healthy or even truly sick conditions every day. We allow ourselves to be tired, achy, stressed and in pain more often than not. Why? Because it’s hard to prioritize our long-term health in a world of so many immediate needs competing for our attention. But long-term health is actually the most important need of all. Without our health, we won’t truly be able to enjoy life or contribute to a greater good.

Dr. David Case offers a few points on how to seek wellness and prevent oral health problems before they even start.READ MORE

13 Jul 2017

Crowns, Bridges, Dentures, and Implants: The Facts

There are lots of ways to deal with missing or damaged teeth. You’ve probably heard one of us at Family Dental Health talking about implants, dentures, bridges, and crowns, but have you ever wondered what they are and how they work? Dr. David Case knows that folks in Portland like to be informed, so think of this as your personal guide to things that might end up in your mouth. As always, if you have any questions, feel free to give us a call!

Crowns, Bridges, and Dentures, Oh My!

At some point in time, most of us will lose at least one adult tooth. The most common cause of tooth loss is gum disease, but it could also be an accident, a sports injury, or a cavity on steroids. Some people are even born without the ability to develop one or more adult teeth! Either way, the point is that most Portland residents will one day face a decision: how do I replace my lost or damaged tooth? There are many ways fill a gap in your bite:

Crowns

Crowns themselves do not replace entire teeth, but they play an important role in the process of stabilizing teeth and supporting other devices that restore harmony to your bite. Sometimes, Dr. David Case will place a crown on a Portland patient’s tooth to improve its appearance or strengthen it after a cavity has left the tooth unable to support a filling. Placed directly over the surface of the tooth (like a king’s crown), crowns can also be used to protect weak teeth, repair broken teeth, attach and anchor a bridge, and/or cover an implant. They come in a variety of materials and colors to suit a number of different needs.

Bridges

Bridges are permanent or removable dental restoration appliances that replace missing teeth with artificial teeth. By creating a literal bridge between gaps, bridges improve the functionality of your bite and the beauty of your smile. Bridges can be made of gold, alloys, porcelain, or any combination thereof. Both fixed and removable bridges make use of surrounding teeth for support, but fixed bridges are usually more stable than removable bridges. However, they are also more expensive that removable bridges.

Dentures

If you have lost most or all of your teeth, dentures may be the way to go. Dentures are natural-looking, removable appliances that allow you to eat and speak normally, despite a lack of teeth. They also help prevent sagging of the facial muscles, which can occur if there are little or no teeth to support the structure of your face. There are three types of dentures: conventional, immediate, and overdentures. Conventional dentures require the removal of any remaining teeth and a healing period (sometimes several months or longer) before they can be fitted. Immediate dentures also require the rest of your teeth to be removed, but are inserted the same day as the removal. Overdentures are a great option if you have a few healthy teeth left. They are called overdentures because Dr. David Case fits them over your remaining teeth, which provide support and help keep your jawbone healthy. Although the process of adapting to your dentures may be uncomfortable at first, having functional teeth is much better for your health in the long run!

Implants

In terms of preserving the integrity of the jawbone and providing support and strength to nearby crowns, bridges, and/or dentures, implants are the best option for missing teeth. Implants are small, titanium posts that Dr. David Case inserts directly into your jawbone. The bone grows around them, much like a natural root, and fixes them in place. Once the bone around the implant is fully healed, a replacement tooth is placed over the implant. This is the closest you can come to a natural tooth. Stimulation from chewing with an implant helps to preserve the jawbone and encourage circulation in the surrounding area. Implants are a permanent solution for a healthier smile.

Why fix missing teeth?

Even if missing teeth aren’t visible and don’t seem to affect your bite, it is still important to do something about them. Dr. David Case wants every Portland resident to know that the reasons for using crowns, bridges, dentures, and implants go beyond cosmetics and comfort. Your adult teeth are designed to work as a team, and any missing player can compromise the function of your bite, ease of speech, susceptibility to dental disease, and the health of your jawbone. Call Family Dental Health today to make an appointment and we’ll help you get the beautiful, healthy smile you deserve!

Sources

13 Jun 2017

Is it ever too late for dental work?

Let’s be honest. If you are like most Portland folks, you’ve probably put off going to the dentist at one time or another. Some of us have even avoided seeing a dentist for years at a time. In fact, one in three Americans avoid going to the dentist regularly.

After a while, that time spent away from Dr. David Case’s chair adds up, and so does the cost of dental work.

You start to feel and even see that your teeth are not in good shape. Plaque and tartar buildup, toothaches, sensitivity to hot and cold, bleeding gums, deep, dark stains, perhaps even loose, clearly decaying teeth. Either way, by the time you get to this point you are probably wondering – is it too late to see the dentist?

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13 May 2017

The Oral-Systemic Link: Risk Factors for Tooth Decay

Did you know the same plaque that decays your teeth can cause major heart problems? What if you could fight plaque and heart failure both by improving your oral health? Dr. David Case in Portland is here to tell you more!

Someone dies from a heart attack every minute, according to the American Heart Association, and most heart attacks (and 85% of strokes) are caused by cholesterol build-up – aka plaque.

But there is good news. You can work with your Portland dentist and your doctor to understand and minimize your risk factors for developing plaque and tooth decay.READ MORE

27 Jan 2017

Wondering How To Get White Teeth? 5 Common Brushing Mistakes

We all learned how to brush our teeth when we were about 3 or 4, so you’d think we have it mastered by now. Right? Unfortunately, probably not.

We all make mistakes sometimes. And that’s okay! All that matters is that you’re dedicated to having the healthiest mouth possible. These five tips for how to get white teeth are just to help you take the best care of your mouth between your visits to our Portland office.

The biggest thing to remember is that any brushing is better than no brushing, so don’t be discouraged if you are making some mistakes. If you still have questions, try checking out our Oral Hygiene page, or always feel free to contact Dr. David Case today!

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27 Dec 2016

5 Reasons to Treat Your Gum Disease

5_Gum_Disease (1)You might not even know it, but you probably have gum disease. 3 out of 4 people do! But, the good news is that it is easily treatable, especially when caught in its early stages. Family Dental Health can help you get a happy, healthy mouth with simple treatments such as frequent cleanings and antibiotics.

You might ask: if you don’t even know you have gum disease then why should you treat it? Dr. David Case hopes this post helps clear up how serious periodontal (gum) disease can be, and gives you at least five good reasons to come in for a gum disease consultation. Call our Portland office today to make your appointment

1. Get more energy – Periodontal disease is an infection of your gums by the bacteria in your mouth. And like any infection, your immune system will try to fight it. You know how when you get a cold you just want to sleep all day? Your body feels the same way when it’s fighting gum disease. Who knows, treat your gum disease and you might find yourself wanting to run a marathon!READ MORE

13 Dec 2016

Sleep Apnea in Children

Kid_Sleep_ApneaYou may think being exhausted simply comes with the territory of being a parent (and it does), but there may also be a serious medical condition causing your child to wake up often throughout the night – sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is most commonly found in adults, but can also, in rare cases affect children. Dr. David Case, dentist at Family Dental Health in Portland cares about treating your little ones. Read below to learn more about how dentists can diagnose and treat sleep apnea.

Sleep Apnea & Its Effects

Sleep apnea occurs when breathing becomes shallow or pauses completely while you’re asleep. It can be caused by your tongue or tonsils being too large and blocking your airway, the collapse of soft tissues in the back of the throat, or by your brain not sending the proper signals to keep breathing while you sleep.

Sleep apnea causes a lot of problems for children, the most obvious being restless sleep. Other problems can include failure to thrive, slower developmental milestones, excessive sleepiness in daytime, and attention or behavioral problems – all due to a lack of quality sleep. Sleep apnea is most common in children between two and eight years old.

About 2-4% of children have sleep apnea, but it is harder to diagnose in children than in adults. One major difference between sleep apnea in children and adults is that children with sleep apnea, unlike adults, often are not overweight. Since children spend half of their time asleep (a parent can dream), healthy sleep is hugely important for their health and development.

Physical Signs of Sleep Apnea:

  • Loud, frequent snoring
  • Frequent night waking
  • Mouth breathing
  • Enlarged tonsils
  • Excessive sweating at night
  • Headache in the morning

Dentistry for Sleep Apnea

Among all primary care doctors, dentists are the most likely to see clues your child might have sleep apnea. A dentist is a trained professional who spends a lot of time looking at your mouth. And by looking in your mouth, they can tell a lot about your overall health and how your body is functioning. Routine dental visits play an important role in preventing many health problems.

By the looks of your child’s mouth, gums, teeth, and throat, a dentist can easily tell if your child might have sleep apnea. Children with teeth, even as young as one-year-old, should regularly visit the dentist.

Dentists are experts in helping your entire mouth, face, and neck work together to be as healthy as possible. This goes for everything from good nutrition to good sleep. If your dentist believes your child may have sleep apnea, they will work with other doctors to confirm and treat the diagnosis.

In many cases, your dentist will be able to offer an oral appliance, or mouthpiece, as a non-surgical solution. While weight is rarely an issue for children with sleep apnea, in some cases, weight-loss will be recommended. Treating allergies may also improve your child’s breathing while he/she sleeps. In some serious cases, surgery will be recommended.

If you think your child may have sleep apnea, or if you’d like to learn more about caring for your child’s dental and oral health, call your Portland dentist, Dr. David Case today to make an appointment at Family Dental Health.

Sources

27 Nov 2016

Protect Yourself from Oral Cancer

10_YearsDr. David Case and all of us at Family Dental Health would like to take this opportunity to talk about oral cancer, the lives that are lost to it, and what it could mean for you and your family. Oral cancer is one of the only cancers that is actually becoming more common, and we want our Portland patients to know what it is, and how to protect themselves.

Oral cancer refers to mouth cancer, tongue cancer, throat cancer, tonsil cancer, and a number of others. This year alone, more than 5,000 people will lose the battle to some form of oral cancer. Dr. Case is teaming up with the entire healthcare community to beat this disease by teaching people everywhere about how to spot it and maintain low risk.

**This post is not intended to diagnose or treat oral cancer. Its purpose is simply to inform Portland residents. If you suspect that you or a loved one may have oral cancer, come see Dr. David Case as soon as possible.**

Oral cancer is a group of diseases that can affect your body in a number of different ways. In order to list all the symptoms and warning signs we would need an entire website, so we’ve simplified the list conveniently.

The most common ways oral cancer can affect you:READ MORE

13 Nov 2016

The Importance of Dental X-Rays

X_Rays (1)The technology of dental medicine is advancing by the minute. There are now sophisticated techniques for diagnosing and tracking oral cancer, correcting crooked teeth in less than a year, treating periodontitis (advanced gum disease) without surgery, and many more. Yet, when it comes down to diagnosing issues and creating an effective treatment plan, nothing beats a fresh set of X-rays. Dr. David Case uses dental X-rays to see the whole picture, in order to keep your teeth healthy, bright, and beautiful. If you are a Portland resident with questions about how X-rays work, read on, and don’t hesitate to call Family Dental Health with any concerns.

What are X-rays?

X-rays have been around since 1895, when Wilhelm Conrad Roentgen first discovered that his cathode ray tube could penetrate black paper and cast shadows of solid objects. X-rays are on a shorter wavelength than visible light and pass through soft tissue in the human body, providing a detailed picture of what’s going on inside. Without X-Rays, the treatment of everything from cavities, to broken bones, to cancer, would be much more difficult. Beyond medicine and science, X-Rays have useful applications across many industries.

Why do I need X-Rays?READ MORE