Am I a Candidate for Professional Teeth Whitening?

You could be an excellent candidate for professional teeth whitening if you suffer from superficial tooth stains and have a desire for a brighter, whiter smile. Professional teeth whitening not only removes the surface stains that are making your teeth look yellow and dingy, but also penetrates the tooth surface to lighten deep-set stains that at-home systems can’t touch.

There are some conditions and situations that may preclude you from being an ideal candidate for teeth whitening, including:

  • You should be in good overall oral health. Patients with gum disease, untreated cavities or worn enamel would not be candidates because the bleaching gel will cause sensitivity to those areas.
  • Patients under the age of 16 are not good candidates because the nerve of the tooth is enlarged until this age. Teeth whitening could irritate the pulp or cause sensitivity.
  • Teeth whitening is not recommended for women who are pregnant or lactating.
  • If you have tooth-colored fillings or composite materials in dental restorations such as crowns or bonding, they will not whiten. This can result in uneven coloring between your teeth and your restorations.
  • An allergy to hydrogen peroxide would preclude you from professional teeth whitening.
  • Patients with receding or sensitive gums would not be good candidates for teeth whitening.
  • If you have darkly stained gray or purple stained teeth, they may be especially resistant to professional bleaching treatments.

Schedule a consultation with your Sarasota FL dentist to find out if you are a good candidate for professional teeth whitening, and to discuss the options best suited to you. With professional teeth whitening, you could be enjoying teeth up to 10 shades lighter in as little as one visit.

What Happens During My Root Canal Procedure

If your Sarasota dentist has recommended a root canal procedure, you may be wondering what will happen while you are undergoing treatment.

A root canal treatment necessitates one or more office visits. It can be performed by your dentist or by an endodontist, a dentist specializing in the causes, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of trauma or diseases of the human tooth pulp or nerve. Depending on the degree of difficulty of your procedure needed, you may choose your regular dentist or seek out a specialist. Your dentist can help you with this decision.

An x-ray is often the first step toward planning your root canal procedure. This allows the accurate visualization of the shape of the root canals and any surrounding infection in the bone or tissue. Once this information is established, you will then receive a local anesthesia to numb the area surrounding the affected tooth.

Your dentist will then prepare the space around the tooth with a dental dam (a sheet of thin rubber) around the tooth, shielding it from saliva during the procedure. This allows for a more sterile and safe working space.

During treatment, an access hole is drilled into the tooth, allowing for the removal of tooth pulp, bacteria, decayed nerve tissue, and any remaining debris. This thorough cleaning is necessary to prevent infection. If you have a severe infection, your dentist may apply medication inside the tooth, or if there is none, your tooth may be sealed immediately with a temporary filling to keep out saliva and food particles until your next appointment.

During the second appointment, the temporary filling is removed and the interior of the tooth is filled with a sealer paste and tooth compound. A permanent filling seals the hole again.

If further restoration is needed due to extensive decay, a dental crown or other dental cosmetic restoration might be needed to prevent further tooth decay, cracking or breaking, and to restore full tooth function. Your dentist will know what additional dental work is needed for you.

Services Provided by Family Dentistry

family-dental-officeA family dentistry practice can do everything any other dentist is able to do, only they are able to do it for your whole family, sometimes at the same time! Family dentists recognize that your time is valuable, and they offer a variety of dental services to children as young as one year or to adults long past retirement. A family dentist knows your family’s complete dental history, and can give you the best advice and treatment based on that knowledge and their expertise.

A family dentist will do routine check-ups, x-rays, preventative care, and cleanings for your entire family. With a little planning ahead, you can schedule concurrent appointments for you and for other family members, such as your children, allowing you to have three or more appointments in the span of time allowed for one. Think of the time you will save!

A family dentistry practice will offer such services as dental crowns, dental bridges and tooth-colored fillings. They will also offer extractions, root canal therapies or emergency care, and can offer such cosmetic services such as veneers or tooth whitening.

You can trust your family dentist with your teeth for life. He or she will know important details about the formative years of your children’s teeth, including their dental hygiene routines and diet histories. Because your child won’t have to find another dentist as he or she ages, your child will be more comfortable and at ease with your family dentist. The surroundings and the staff will be familiar, leading to a greater likelihood of returning for routine preventative care.

Your family dentist may also offer sedation dentistry, especially to those patients who experience fear or anxiety about dental visits. Young, anxious children may benefit from sedation dentistry, allowing them to relax, to comply with the dentist’s instructions and to stay still.

Your family dentist in Sarasota FL  is committed to you, the patient. They want to create and maintain a long-lasting relationship with you and your family, remaining your choice of dentist for years to come.


Most Popular Cosmetic Dental Procedures

cosmetic-dentistry-3With advances in cosmetic dentistry, you no longer have to live with an unsatisfactory smile. Today’s cosmetic dentists can perform a wide variety of procedures intended to make your smile brighter, more youthful, and aesthetically pleasing. Some of the most popular procedures currently being performed by qualified cosmetic dentists include the following:

  • Teeth whitening or bleaching eliminates tooth stains and discoloration
  • Dental implants, both mini and full, give a more natural look and feel than traditional dentures
  • Dental bonding corrects broken, crooked, or uneven teeth
  • Porcelain veneers can correct both heavily discolored or severely damaged teeth
  • White or composite fillings are used to treat damage to the teeth caused by cavities, and are a more natural looking alternative to traditional silver fillings
  • Dental contouring aligns overlapping or crooked teeth, or helps correct the shape of teeth
  • Cosmetic gum surgery can correct a receding gum line caused by natural aging or gum disease
  • Accelerated orthodontics offers the same straightening benefits as braces with a much shorter treatment time
  • A dental bridge or fixed partial denture helps eliminate a flat look caused by missing teeth, and helps bring back the appeal of your natural smile

Nearly all of these cosmetic procedures can be completed in one to two dental visits, are relatively painless, and require minimal recovery time. Cosmetic dentistry offers a multitude of treatments to help you improve your smile and boost your self-confidence. Consult with a qualified cosmetic dentist to find out how you can reshape your smile and enjoy greater self-esteem for years to come.


Dr. Jenifer Back is a family and cosmetic dentist in Sarasota Florida

Understanding a Root Canal Procedure

implant-dentistry-2Root canal procedures typically require more than one office visit and may be done by your dentist or an endodontist. An endodontist is a dentist whose specialty is the cause, diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of diseases and trauma to the dental pulp of or the nerve of the tooth. Your dentist may feel comfortable performing your root canal procedure, or, depending on the level of difficulty, may refer you to an endodontist. Your dentist will know who is most qualified to perform the work you need on your particular tooth.

Before the procedure, an X-ray is taken. This will show the shape of your tooth’s root canals and will help determine if there are any signs of infection, particularly in the bone surrounding the tooth. You will receive a local anesthesia to numb the gum tissue around the affected tooth. If the nerve in the tooth is dead, anesthesia may not be necessary.

To prepare the working area and to keep it dry and saliva free during the procedure, your endodontist will use clips to place a dental dam (a rubber sheet) around the tooth. The endodontist will then drill a hole into the tooth and remove the decayed pulp, nerve tissue, and any other debris. Great care is taken to clean the entire root canal and to flush away all of the unwanted material.

Once the tooth is completely cleaned, your dentist will seal it. Depending on the severity of any infection, medication may be applied before the sealant can be applied. Once the infection is cleared, the tooth may be sealed. If the root canal procedure takes more than one visit, your dentist might apply a temporary filling to protect the area between your appointments.

At the second appointment, the inside of the tooth is filled with a rubber compound and sealer paste. Any holes left by the treatment are then filled. Many times, damage to a tooth is so severe that the tooth must be restored with a dental crown. Your endodontist in Sarasota Florida will know what added dental work will be required to complete your root canal procedure.

The Boom of Cosmetic Dentistry

In the past decade or so, cosmetic dentistry has experienced a boom in popularity. This branch of dentistry focuses on improving your appearance and self-esteem by altering your teeth and gums. Instead of focusing on oral health like general dentistry does, cosmetic dentistry targets the aesthetics of your smile.

One of the reasons that this type of dentistry has increased in popularity is that people are more and more concerned about how they look and feel about themselves. People are more willing to take the plunge into cosmetic treatments to enhance their appearance. This is true for plastic surgery, and it has expanded into dentistry as well.

Modern dental techniques have made cosmetic procedures less invasive or painful, contributing to the rise in popularity. Many treatments are practically pain-free, and provide dramatic results. Cosmetic dentistry is no longer seen as risky or uncomfortable, but something that achieves great and lasting impacts that are worth it in the long run.

Treatments are not connected to a specific age group either. People of all age ranges are reaping the benefits of cosmetic dentistry, and often in a short period of time. Sometimes in as little as an hour, cosmetic dentists can transform your smile.

Another thing that has boosted cosmetic dentistry is the fact that people are willing to talk about their cosmetic dental procedures. Even celebrities acknowledge the benefits of cosmetic dentistry, and provide impressive examples of dental work. Ordinary people are more willing to try to achieve a similar look to their most admired celebrities by undergoing cosmetic treatments. What perhaps used to seem unattainable now seems like something everyone can obtain for themselves through a qualified cosmetic dentist.

Tips for a Fast Recovery from Root Canal Treatment

When you’re faced with losing a tooth that is severely damaged or infected, root canal treatment is often the best choice. You may be experiencing severe pain, swelling, or other symptoms. Or, you might not have any signs of trouble but your dentist can tell upon examination that your tooth is at risk. Whatever the reason for treatment, once you have root canal therapy you will want to ensure a fast and successful recovery.

Tooth condition
The condition of your tooth plays an important part in the recovery following treatment. If your tooth was abscessed or severely infected, the amount of time for recovery will likely increase. Sometimes your jaw is even affected, which means a longer recovery period for the bone to fully heal as well.

Dentist experience
It is vital to choose a dentist or endodontist who is well qualified to perform your root canal treatment. The methods used in performing your procedure will affect your recovery. Also, the diseased portion of your tooth pulp must be completely removed and the area fully cleaned in order for you to recover effectively and more quickly. A healthcare professional who is experienced in root canal treatment definitely plays a role in your recovery.

Your dentist should provide a list of instructions for you to follow after your root canal procedure. Some common tips include:

  • Do not eat until the numbness disappears.
  • Do not chew on the affected side of your mouth for a period of time, often until your tooth has been fully restored by your dentist.
  • Brush and floss carefully as directed by your dentist.
  • Call your dentist if the filling falls out, your mouth visibly swells, your bite feels uneven, you experience an allergic reaction to medication such as a rash or itching, or if your original symptoms return.

Simple Ways to Evaluate a Family Dental Practice

When it’s time to find a family dentist for you and your loved ones, you should take the task seriously. Look for a dental practice that will serve all of the family’s oral health needs now and in the future. One way to decide upon a practice is to visit the office and evaluate it for yourself. To learn about the dental practice’s fit for your family, here are some criteria to focus on when you visit the office for the first time.

You must feel comfortable and confident in both the dentist and the staff. Ask to meet with the dentist before your first appointment if possible, so that you can ask questions and learn more about the practice. This is especially true if you have children who will be seeing the dentist also. It is likely that you’ll have a lengthy healthcare relationship with your family dental practice, so make sure that everyone is happy with the staff.

Inquire about education, certifications, affiliations, and partnerships. A good dentist is not only educated, but also continuing to hone skills and learn about the latest technologies.

Observe how the staff in the dental practice treats you and your family. Friendliness, kindness, promptness, and a caring attitude are all important when you are considering a long-term healthcare relationship.

The facility and equipment should be clean and modern, as well as comfortable and inviting for patients. Also consider the office location because family members will be more likely to keep convenient appointments.

In looking for a family dental practice, you probably already asked around to friends and coworkers and researched on the internet for patient reviews. You should also observe other patients in the waiting room when you visit the office, noticing if they seem relaxed and comfortable. You might also consider asking patients if they are happy with the dentist and services.

Cosmetic Dentistry Services in Sarasota Florida

There is more to life than wishing you had an attractive smile. Instead of spending your time pining away for better pearly whites, visit a cosmetic dentist to see how your smile can be improved. Often, there are options available that you might not even know existed. It may be time to change your life through cosmetic dentistry services.

This specialty area of dentistry requires dentists to complete advanced training in techniques and procedures in the cosmetic area. Some general dentists provide certain cosmetic treatments, but cosmetic dentists are more likely to have extensive experience in them and are able to handle even the most complex cases.

There are many ways that cosmetic dentists can change your smile. Here are some options:

  • Dental veneers hide flaws like chips, discoloration, breaks, gaps, and misalignment. Veneers provide a very natural and beautiful solution.
  • Teeth whitening quickly and effectively boosts your smile by transforming your teeth from yellow to white.
  • Dental implants replace missing teeth with a permanent and natural restoration.
  • Crowns provide protection and restore the appearance of teeth that are weak or badly damaged.
  • Bonding repairs chips and cracks on teeth so that they look more uniform.
  • Invisalign braces offer a modern way to straighten your smile without the hassles or embarrassment of traditional braces.

These are just a handful of services that cosmetic dentists offer. When you schedule an initial consultation, you can convey what bothers you about your smile and find out what treatments or procedures can benefit you. There’s no reason to continue with a smile you are unhappy with, so find a cosmetic dentist to help transform your appearance.


Cosmetic Dentistry Services in Sarasota Florida

Getting the Most out of Your Dental Visits

family_top1Your biannual checkups with your dentist in Sarasota Florida are important for maintaining good oral health. Visiting the dentist might not be the most exciting thing to do, but it shouldn’t be unpleasant or scary. With a little care you can make sure your dental checkups are always a positive experience.

Choose the Right Dentist
Choosing the right dentist can greatly improve your comfort levels during your dental visit. Select a dentist who has plenty of experience in all types of general dentistry, and who can provide you with good preventative dental care. Visiting an experienced dentist should give you confidence in your treatment.

Make Sure Your Dentist Has All the Facts
Make sure your dentist has all the information necessary to provide a custom treatment plan. Let them know if you are taking any medications or if you have any health issues that could affect your mouth. Discuss any problems you may have experienced recently, for example toothache or bleeding gums.

Improve Your Homecare Routine
If you fail to brush and floss regularly then your teeth and gums have little chance of staying healthy and strong. A good homecare routine can go a long way towards avoiding common diseases such as tooth decay and gum disease. Preventative dental care at home will save you money and time in the dental chair.

Book Routine Checkups
It’s important to book regular checkups as often as recommended by your dentist in Sarasota Florida. Make sure you attend these appointments, even if your mouth seems fine. This will ensure your teeth are professionally cleaned at regular intervals and any early signs of disease can easily be treated.

Learn to Relax in the Dental Chair
Quite a few people feel nervous before dental visits. You may find it helpful to practice meditation or to carry out a few deep breathing exercises beforehand. If you feel particularly anxious, discuss your concerns with your dentist as they can almost certainly help you feel more at ease.


Family and cosmetic dentist in Sarasota Florida

Flashing Those Pearly Whites

smileSmiling makes an impact on yourself and others. A bright smile increases your confidence level and conveys good health, warmth, and youth. On the other hand, a stained yellowed smile makes you feel self-conscious and give off negative vibes to others. One of the best ways to improve your smile quickly and easily is with teeth whitening.

You have several options when it comes to teeth whitening. The most advantageous way to regain your pearly whites is to have your teeth professionally whitened. Professionals use a higher concentration of peroxide-based bleaching agents than other methods, as well as a special light to aid the process. This type of whitening can improve the color of your teeth up to six shades whiter in one treatment that lasts about an hour. Patients with sensitive gums and teeth can have protective measures taken so that discomfort is minimized. Most patients do not experience significant pain during professional teeth whitening, but if so, any discomfort dissipates quickly.

Another method consists of dentists providing patients with whitening systems for home use. Your dentist will create a model of your mouth in order to make soft trays. Once you have the trays, you will place a small amount of whitening gel inside to wear while sleeping. The trays should be worn anywhere from a week up to six weeks, depending on the extent of discoloration and strength of the gel. Tooth sensitivity can usually be controlled by alternating use of the whitening gel and fluoride in the trays.

The last option is to use over-the-counter whitening products at home. This might be gels, strips, toothpaste, or other home kits. These products are not customized to patients and do not employ very strong concentrations of whitening ingredients, so they do not whiten teeth as dramatically as other methods and will take longer to see results.


Teeth whitening dentist in Sarasota Florida

Teeth Whitening and Sensitive Teeth

cosmetic-dentistryWhitening your teeth is a great way to improve your smile and boost your self-esteem. It is offers a simple way to achieve dramatic results, especially when done professionally in an office setting. The only complaint that sometimes arises is the tooth sensitivity that may develop, usually caused by the whitening agents such as peroxide that can irritate the tooth’s nerves. This can result in tingling or sensitivity to cold. Here are some ways to prevent or treat this issue if it occurs.

  • Follow your cosmetic dentist’s instructions during professional whitening, or the directions on the product if whitening at home. Make sure you follow the guidelines for recommended whitening time.
  • Take over-the-counter pain medications like Advil or Aleve to limit symptoms each time before using the whitening product.
  • Do not over use the whitening products, because excessive exposure can trigger very sensitive teeth or even cause damage.
  • If you experience sensitivity, consider switching to a product with a lower peroxide content. Although you may be tempted to use stronger products in hopes of better results, it may not be worth the excessive tooth sensitivity it causes.
  • If you are whitening at home, reduce treatment to every other day instead of daily if sensitivity occurs. Cutting back on the application time may also help. Giving your teeth a break between treatments can help control your discomfort.
  • Since your teeth may be more sensitive during whitening periods, avoid drinking or eating items that are cold during that time.
  • Brush very gently with a soft toothbrush after whitening so that sensitive teeth and gums won’t be further irritated.
  • Use toothpaste made for sensitive teeth and fluoride rinses to help treat your symptoms.
  • If you are having professional whitening, ask your dentist about products that may be used at the office to reduce sensitivity side effects.
  • Tell your dentist if you experience sensitivity that persists or worsens. It may be related to something else like cavities or gum disease.

After Your Root Canal Treatment

rootcanal2If you have had root canal treatment to save a tooth whose pulp has been damaged, you can breathe a sigh of relief because you are on the road to recovery. Obtaining the necessary treatment is a step in the right direction to restoring your oral health. After having the procedure, it’s helpful to know what to expect during the days that follow and how to have a successful recovery.

Most patients report that discomfort is no different than getting a regular filling. However, here are some issues that might occur:

  • Gum tenderness may be caused by the tools used during the procedure, but it should dissipate within the first day
  • Tooth sensitivity may be present for the first day or so and can usually be controlled with over-the-counter pain relievers
  • Inflammation of the tissues near the tooth’s root may be caused by poking from the dental instruments during the procedure, but ibuprofen is helpful in treating it.
  • Rarely, the procedure can activate and spread bacteria present in the area. This can lead to an infection that requires antibiotic treatment.

After care
It is best to take it easy on your tooth for a period of time after treatment. You want to avoid complications such as the tooth or filling becoming damaged or broken. If this occurs, bacteria and food particles can get into the interior of your tooth and create problems. The best way to protect your tooth after root canal treatment is to pay attention to what you eat. Especially avoid biting or chewing crunchy or hard foods. In terms of dental hygiene, continue regular brushing with a soft toothbrush and flossing carefully. If you encounter difficulties, let your dentist know.

Your tooth will need a permanent restoration to complete the root canal process. The type of restoration and the time frame in placing it play a role in the overall success of treatment. Make sure you discuss this aspect of treatment with your dentist.



Meeting Everyone’s Needs Through Family Dentistry

shutterstock_17269039The emphasis of family dentistry is treating a wide variety of oral health issues for patients from every age group. Family dentists focus on educating patients about dental care, eliminating tooth decay, minimizing plaque buildup through professional cleanings, encouraging healthy gums, and treating problems. You can choose a family dental practice that meets the needs of everyone in your family by offering numerous services.

Professional cleanings
Removing tartar and plaque through professional cleanings helps prevent cavities, gingivitis, and gum disease. It also improves the look of your smile. It usually takes under an hour and is not painful.

Composite fillings
Cavities or small holes in your teeth can be filled with composite resin material, which matches your tooth color so that they are not noticeable in your smile. Plus, it serves the purpose of saving your damaged tooth.

Dental implants
Missing teeth can be replaced with dental implants, which are titanium rods surgically placed in your jaw and then covered with an artificial tooth. Implants are a permanent restoration that gives you back the appearance and function of your teeth.

A badly damaged tooth can be rebuilt using a dental crown, also called a cap. It completely covers the visible portion of the tooth to restore it.

When teeth are missing or extractions are needed, a partial or full set of dentures can be created to give you a full smile back. This is often a treatment for senior patients.

Pediatric dentistry
Children have unique oral health needs that a family dentist can treat. This includes preventing tooth decay, teaching good oral hygiene habits, ensuring good experiences at the dentist for kids, and more.

General dentistry
The most recent technology and advances in dentistry can be applied to all family members.

Additional services
Many family dentist offer many other services, such as dental X-rays, root canal treatment, bonding, bridges, emergency appointments, and more.


If you need a family dentist in the Sarasota Florida area, contact our office today.  We offer dentistry for the entire family.

Sports Drinks and Your Teeth

energy-drinksSports drinks are a popular way to rehydrate after exercising but may not be a healthy choice for your teeth. Around 62% of American teenagers consume at least one of these drinks each day, but excess consumption can take its toll on oral health. Listed below are some of the reasons why these drinks are harmful.

What Makes Sports Drinks so Bad for Teeth?
Many sports drinks are high in sugar and it’s best to avoid these brands. This advice is already well known, but what’s less obvious is the high acid content. Any general dentist in Sarasota, FL  will tell you it’s the acid that can present the most danger to your teeth. It’s been found that consuming these drinks for just five days could permanently damage your teeth.

But Aren’t They Healthier than Soda?
Many people choose sports drinks to enhance their athletic performance and think they are a better choice than ordinary soda. In fact there is not much difference between the two, as sports drinks can contain just as much, if not more sugar. It’s certainly a myth that sports drinks are better for your teeth than sodas.

What Type of Damage Can They Do to Teeth?
Sports drinks can cause enamel erosion which is where the hard outer layer of your teeth is literally eroded away by the acid in these drinks. This can cause your teeth to become sensitive to hot and cold and increases the risk of tooth decay.

How Can I Avoid This Risk?
It’s best to avoid these drinks completely, but if you can’t give them up then try to at least minimize your consumption. Afterwards rinse your mouth with water, but wait at least half an hour before brushing. This allows the acidity levels in your mouth to normalize which has the effect of enabling your tooth enamel to slightly re-harden. Once this has occurred it’s safe to brush. Your dentist in Sarasota might also recommend chewing sugar-free gum after consuming one of these drinks. This is because chewing helps increase saliva production, reducing acidity in your mouth.

familyThe area of dentistry that provides preventative and restorative treatment for oral health needs for the whole family is called family dentistry. These types of dental practices deal with all age groups using a wide variety of treatment options.

Although similar to general dentistry, family dentistry does not restrict the practice to specific age groups. It addresses oral health issues at every stage of life, from baby teeth to permanent teeth. Children should begin regularly seeing a dentist around turning one year old, so what better way to start your child’s professional dental care by establishing care with the same dentist that the whole family sees? It is convenient to have everyone seeing the same dentist, and you can establish a long-lasting healthcare relationship for all of you.

One of the most important aspects of family dentistry is ongoing, consistent maintenance and preventative treatment. Experts recommend getting a dental checkup every six months for deep cleanings and routine examinations. This helps eliminate plaque buildup, a primary cause of tooth decay and cavities, and identifies any oral health issues that might be occurring even before symptoms develop.

Fluoride treatments are offered by most family dentists. This involves coating the teeth with fluoride to help prevent tooth decay. Dental sealants are another line of defense against dental issues that family dentists can provide. Other services that some family dentists offer include cavity filling, gum disease treatment, crowns, root canals, extractions, and orthodontics. Treatments offered completely depends on the family dentist and the associated practice. Make sure you ask questions and learn all about the practice before choosing a family dentist for your own family’s needs.

Contact our office if you are looking for a great family dentist in Sarasota Florida

What Is a Dental Emergency?

emergency-dentistDental emergencies can occur quite suddenly, for example toothache can develop overnight, or a tooth may be injured through some sort of trauma. Certain types of dental emergencies require prompt action to avoid permanent damage or infection. Listed below are a few situations that fall into this category.

  • Broken or cracked teeth. Contact an emergency dentist in Sarasota Florida as soon as possible. In the meantime rinse out your mouth with water, and use a cold compress to reduce any swelling.
  • Bleeding lips or tongue. Wash the affected area and try to stem the bleeding through holding a clean piece of gauze over the wound while applying gentle pressure. If the bleeding won’t stop, go to the emergency room straightaway.
  • Jaw injury. If you have injured your jaw, apply an ice pack to help reduce swelling and visit your dental office or emergency room straightaway.
  • Knocked out tooth. Pick up the tooth holding it by its crown and rinse any dirt off the root. Don’t remove any pieces of tissue remaining on the root. If you can, try to reinsert the tooth, holding it in place with a clean finger. Otherwise store the tooth in some clean water and take it to your local dental office or emergency room. Teeth can sometimes be reinserted, but usually only within the first half an hour to an hour.
  • Loose tooth. Contact your dentist immediately if one of your teeth becomes loose. In the meantime use over-the-counter painkillers if required, and a cold compress to reduce swelling.
  • Lost filling or crown. Contact your dentist in Sarasota for an emergency appointment, but in the meantime you may want to reattach the crown using temporary cement from your local drugstore. Otherwise store the crown safely and bring it with you to your appointment. You can also use temporary cement as a temporary filling, or alternatively try a small piece of sugar-free gum.
  • Severe toothache. Gently floss around the affected tooth in case the pain is caused by trapped food debris. Make an appointment to see your dentist as soon as possible.
  • Gum swelling. This can indicate an abscess and requires immediate treatment to clear the infection. See your dentist as soon as possible.

Smoking and Its Effect on Oral Health

smoking-and-teeth-300x200The dangers of smoking have been well documented over the past few decades. We all know smoking can negatively impact general health, affecting your heart and lungs, but not so many realize smoking can damage oral health. Although you may dislike having nicotine stained teeth, smoking can cause even worse problems for your oral tissues and gums.

The big concern is the increased risk of oral cancer. Smoking is often linked with lung cancer, but smokers are at greater risk of developing oral cancer. Switching to alternative forms of tobacco, for example chewing tobacco doesn’t decrease the risk and could actually raise it.

Another issue is the link between oral health and gum disease. People who smoke are six times more likely to develop gum disease. It’s more difficult for your general dentist in Sarasota to treat this condition as smoking makes it harder for gums to heal. In addition, people who smoke have fewer good bacteria in their mouth and larger quantities of bad bacteria which makes fighting this disease even trickier.

It’s best to completely quit smoking and to refrain from using any types of tobacco products. Many people find it difficult to give up due to the physical and psychological addiction caused by nicotine. Your family dentist in Sarasota or your family doctor can recommend methods and programs aimed at helping you stop smoking. It’s possible your dentist might suggest more frequent checkups to help protect your oral health, at least until you feel able to give up smoking completely.

manandwomanA cosmetic dentist is someone who has chosen to concentrate on providing cosmetic dentistry techniques and who has a real interesting in creating beautiful smiles. Any dentist can call themselves a cosmetic dentist, so it does pay to shop around and to select someone who has the necessary training and experience required to help perfect your smile.

It can be tricky to find the right cosmetic dentist, so listed below are a few tips to help in your search.

  • Ask friends, family and colleagues for recommendations as personal referrals are an excellent way to get started. In addition, search online as you should be able to read patient reviews and information about qualifications.
  • Make sure your dentist has relevant experience and training in specific areas that interest you, and ask if they belong to any professional associations such as the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry.
  • Book an initial consultation and write down all the questions you want to ask beforehand.
  • Ask to see before and after photographs, or check out their website as many dentists have a smile gallery.
  • Trust your instincts, as it is important to select someone you feel comfortable working with. Your cosmetic dentist in Sarasota should take the time to answer all your questions, and you need to feel confident in their abilities to create your dream smile.

Taking your time picking the right cosmetic dentist in Sarasota, FL will help you find someone with the following attributes:

  • Your chosen dentist should be current in the latest technologies and will actively pursue continued professional development courses in their chosen specialties.
  • A good cosmetic dentist will be able to make over your smile in a way that complements your facial structure, your skin tone and even your personality.
  • Choosing a dentist who has the sufficient experience and expertise will help achieve your goals. You should be able to discuss your aims, see examples of treatments relevant to your needs, and will receive a detailed treatment plan showing a complete breakdown of costs.

What’s a Smile Makeover And Could It Help Me?

Very few people are lucky enough to have a perfect smile, but nowadays a smile makeover can help improve on nature. Your cosmetic dentist in Sarasota Florida can replace missing teeth, or will repair any that are broken, chipped or stained. Misaligned teeth can be brought back into alignment with the latest orthodontic technologies. The final result should have you grinning from ear to ear.

Description of a Smile Makeover
Smile makeovers can include a combination of different treatments, and both surgical and nonsurgical procedures can be used to correct various problems with your teeth and gums. A smile makeover is customized to deal with your particular issues. Common problems that can be treated include missing teeth, and unevenly spaced teeth and bite problems. Cracks and chips in teeth can be mended, and teeth that are badly discolored can be brightened up, or disguised with dental restorations.

Finding out more about a Smile Makeover in Sarasota Florida
Your first step is to book an appointment with a good cosmetic dentist in Sarasota Florida. During your initial consultation you can expect to learn all the options available for treatment, and you’ll discuss your aims with your dentist. A good cosmetic dentist takes a number of different factors into account when planning a smile makeover. These include your overall facial shape, skin tone and your facial structure, and all are important for ensuring the final result looks naturally beautiful.

Procedures That Can Be Used during a Smile Makeover
Common procedures that can be used during a smile makeover include:

  • Dental implants for replacing missing teeth
  • Teeth whitening to brighten discolored and stained teeth
  • Porcelain veneers to improve the appearance of front teeth
  • Enamel recontouring and bonding to reshape and hide imperfections in teeth
  • White fillings to replace old silver fillings or stained white fillings
  • Dentures that look and function like natural teeth
  • Adult orthodontics to help correct crooked or overcrowded teeth, or to correct bite problems

Finding the Right Endodontist

No one is overjoyed to hear they need a root canal treatment, but it can be the best way to save a badly infected tooth from extraction. Your dentist in Sarasota will examine your tooth and can tell you if this treatment is appropriate. Root canal treatments are often carried out by an endodontist. This is a dentist who specializes in treating the pulp and root canals in your teeth. It’s advantageous to visit an endodontist as they are highly experienced in carrying out root canal therapy, and will ensure treatment is comfortable and effective.

An infected tooth can be painful, and searching for an endodontist might be the last thing you want to do. The following tips will help narrow down your search:

  • Your dentist in Sarasota should be able to recommend a reputable endodontist. Their office should have all this information to hand.
  • There’s no reason why you have to follow your dentist’s recommendation as you are perfectly free to choose your own endodontist.
  • Root canal therapy is a common treatment, so ask friends, family and colleagues for recommendations. Hearing their first-hand experiences can be invaluable in making your selection.
  • Look online for an endodontist in your area. Take the time to read about their credentials and read reviews.
  • Choose an experienced endodontist who has already carried out many root canal procedures.
  • Book a consultation to make sure you feel comfortable and confident with your choice. If you have second thoughts then find another endodontist in your area.


Root canal dentist in Sarasota FL

Oral Cancer Screenings at Your Dentist in Sarasota Florida

Oral cancer includes cancers of the tongue, the hard and soft palate, the sinuses, the throat, and the cheeks and lips. It is a disease that can be life threatening if not diagnosed early enough, and oral cancer rates are increasing. One of the main problems with this condition is that it is frequently diagnosed when the cancer is already well advanced, and when the chances of a complete cure are greatly reduced.

What Are The Symptoms of Oral Cancer?

  • The most common symptoms include:
  • Sores in the mouth that fail to heal within two weeks, and which bleed easily
  • Lumps, bumps and swellings in the mouth
  • Rough patches of skin in the mouth
  • Color changes to the soft tissues in the mouth, for example the development of red or white spots
  • Difficultly in eating, chewing or swallowing
  • Having a sore throat or feeling hoarse
  • Noticing your teeth fit together slightly differently
  • Certain areas of the face may become numb, or might feel painful or tender

How is Oral Cancer Diagnosed?
Oral cancer screenings are a part of regular dental checkups. Your dentist will examine all the soft tissues in your mouth, and will check to see if the lymph nodes in your neck are swollen. If they find anything that looks suspicious then they will remove a few cells for closer examination. This is done with a brush biopsy, where a small brush is used to collect a few cells, or through removing a small sample of tissue for closer analysis. If anything suspicious is found then your dentist will refer you to an oral cancer specialist for further tests.

Early diagnosis of this disease is essential, and you can help yourself by keeping an eye out for any possible symptoms in between regular screenings. One of the most commons symptoms is noticing an ulcer or sore that fails to heal within a reasonable timeframe. It is always worth seeking professional dental advice to help eliminate the possibility of oral cancer.


We offer oral cancer screening at our Sarasota dental office.

Overcoming Dental Anxiety or Phobias

Nobody really looks forward to going to the dentist, and most of us are relieved when the appointment is over, but some people suffer from far more deep seated phobias that can prevent them from visiting a dentist altogether. It is estimated that anywhere between 9% and 15% of the population will actively avoid seeking help for dental problems until they are experiencing a lot of discomfort or pain.

Is There a Difference Between Dental Anxiety and Phobia?
Yes, as people with dental anxiety can often manage to keep it under control for long enough to receive essential dental care. Dental phobias are more intense, and people with this phobia can often feel terrified about visiting the dentist. Someone with a dental phobia is more likely to suffer from dental diseases and tooth loss, and this can negatively affect general health. Clinical studies have linked poor oral health to numerous general health conditions.

What Causes Dental Phobia and Anxiety?
Anxiety and phobias can arise due to a number of different factors. Feeling helpless in the dental chair can be more than some people are able to cope with, while others are afraid of pain or are simply embarrassed over the state of their teeth. Some people have had negative experiences in the past, or will have had dental phobias and anxiety passed on to them by their parents.

Your Dentist Can Help
If you do experience anxiety or have phobias over visiting the dentist then talk to your dental clinic about your concerns. Modern dental care is designed to be non-threatening, and sedation techniques can enable even the most nervous patient to receive dental care; there is certainly no need for dentistry to be painful or upsetting. You will find your dentist is sympathetic towards patients who feel nervous or anxious, and there are lots of different techniques that can be used to help you feel more at ease and more in control. Gentle dental care can be provided at a pace you’re comfortable with, helping to restore your oral health.


Dr. Jenifer Back is a dentist in Sarasota FL that treats patients with dental phobias.

Missing Permanent Teeth

Missing one or more permanent teeth is a very common abnormality that people have since birth. Over 20 percent of people are missing one or more wisdom teeth, and over 5 percent lack second molars or incisors. It is an inherited trait that often appears to run in families. If you are missing any of your permanent teeth, no need to panic. Your dentist will be able to help you, but in the meantime here are some facts about this condition.

Each tooth in your mouth has a certain role, so the pattern and function of the teeth are disrupted when one is missing. It is sometimes obvious just by appearance that something is out of place when there are only four teeth where there should be six, for example. Often your teeth will move on their own to close the gaps themselves, causing a flaw in the appearance as well as function. Sometimes the teeth no longer fit together properly and you’re unable to grasp or chew food correctly.

If you’re able to tell on your own that there’s a problem, or if you are diagnosed by your dentist, you will likely want to consider treatment options. It is common to move the teeth into better position using orthodontic braces, and then replace missing teeth artificially. Many times this involves natural-looking dental implants. For the best results, implants should be done after your jaw has finished growing.

The important thing is to consult your dentist about options and timing so that the most successful results may be achieved. Once treatment is complete, it is likely that you or no one else will be able to tell you were ever missing any permanent teeth.


Dental implants dentist in Sarasota FL