3 Benefits of Panoramic X-Rays for Your Teeth

X-rays at the dentist are standard procedure, so you may wonder if there’s a need for the panoramic version. These X-rays are actually more helpful for dentists in Woodbury, MN because they offer a comprehensive view of your mouth. We’ll look at three benefits you can expect from these more detailed images.

Early Detection

The dentist is essentially looking at every part of you, including the neck, jaw, and head. We often forget just how interconnected our body is, especially when we’re in pain. Dentists get a chance to see how everything is working together when they look at a panoramic X-ray, which can make it easier to identify anything from benign cysts to cancer. All the information they collect can make it easier to see dental abnormalities before they have a chance to get worse.

Changes Over Time

A panoramic X-ray every few years makes it easy to compare how the mouth changes over time. If there are any issues with the bone or teeth, it will be possible for the dentist to see where the problem stems and how it’s progressing. So if you’re experiencing headaches and you expect it might have something to do with dental pain, the dentist will be able to give you their expert opinion. If you’re looking for panoramic X-rays in Woodbury, MN, you can trust that you’re getting an accurate diagnosis based on real evidence.

Excellent for People of All Ages

In children, panoramic X-rays are used to monitor everything from cavity patterns to how the wisdom teeth are coming in. For adults, dentists use them to figure out how to treat dental disorders, including TMJ or abnormal growths. We especially recommend these X-rays to anyone who’s had ongoing issues with their teeth or jaw. There are plenty of people with unspecified issues who can be helped by this service.

Find a Dentist in Woodbury, MN

At Woodlane Family & Cosmetic Dentistry, panoramic X-rays are standard practice for us. When you visit our offices, you can rest assured that the images taken show a comprehensive view of everything happening in your head. Contact us to schedule yours today.

Fear of the Dentist? 4 Tips to Make Dental Appointments Easier  

It’s said that about 36 percent of the population suffers from a fear of the dentist, while another 12 percent of the population suffers from extreme dental fear. If you’re a person who wants to take care of their teeth but who does not know how to overcome this fear, these four suggestions can help.

1. Shop Around for the Right Dentist

Not all dentists handle nervous patients in the same way. The dentist you choose should be able to handle your fears in a way that makes you feel comfortable. Before choosing a dentist to see, contact dentists in your area. Ask them questions such as:

  • What suggestions do you have for patients struggling to overcome the fear of the dentist?
  • What do you do to help patients feel more comfortable in your practice?
  • What do your dental hygienists do to help patients overcome the fear of the dentist?

Knowing this information in advance can help you choose a dentist with effective strategies for helping nervous patients. Choosing the right dentist will be able to make you feel comfortable from the get-go, and will help you feel some control over your experience, which can also help put you at ease.

2. Communicate with Your Dental Hygienist

The dental hygienist is the first person you see when you visit the dentist. Tell your dental hygienist (before the cleaning begins) about your feelings. If anything specifically is a trigger for your fears (maybe certain noises or difficult conversations about dental hygiene), tell your dental hygienist, so they can proceed carefully.

3. Practice Deep Breathing Before Dental Appointments

Meditation and deep breathing can help calm your nerves. Practice meditation and deep breathing before appointments to help you feel more centered and in control. You can also practice mindfulness during your appointments, which helps you avoid thinking about things that are especially hard.

4. Bring Some Music or a Podcast

Load some calming music onto your phone before your appointment, then listen to the music throughout the appointment. Alternatively, you can also listen to an especially engrossing podcast, which can help take your mind off of what is happening.

Ready to See the Dentist? Contact Woodlane Family and Cosmetic Dentistry

At Woodlane Family and Cosmetic Dentistry, we can help you overcome the discomfort you might feel about seeing the dentist. Call today to talk about strategies that can soothe your fears, and make an appointment.

 

Smile-Threatening Myths About Dental Care

Your smile shows the world when you are happy and is a huge part of who you are. Plus, your oral health can have an effect on your overall health. Therefore, working with a dentist to make sure you have a good general dental care plan is ever-important. Unfortunately, many people avoid going to the dentist, and when they do, underlying myths could be to blame. Here is a look at some of the ongoing myths about general dental care that can actually be a threat to your smile and your oral health.

Myth: You don’t have to go to the dentist if there is nothing wrong.

The best dental care is more about prevention than treatment. You may not have anything wrong when you visit the dentist, but the dentist provides treatments, assessments, and advice to ensure you continue to not have any issues with your oral health. For example, simply having your teeth professionally cleaned annually can reduce the chances of decay by a substantial amount.

Myth: Dentists bring you in as much as possible to make money.

It may seem like you have to go to the dentist a lot if you have an issue being corrected, but the dentist is not doing repeat appointments to make more money. Oftentimes, treatments have to be split up over several appointments to protect you as a patient. For example, the dentist may do work on some teeth during one appointment and the rest of the teeth during another to allow proper time for healing between.

Myth: Dental care is painful and uncomfortable.

Modern-day dental care is far more comfortable than ever. Dentists have access to a number of solutions to help you stay comfortable and pain-free during treatment. You may have access to localized anesthesia, general anesthesia, nitrous oxide (laughing gas), and modern treatments that are less likely to cause discomfort.

Myth: A small cavity is really not that big of a deal.

One small cavity may seem like a minuscule issue. However, one small cavity means the enamel of the tooth has been compromised, which also means the tooth is now more vulnerable to further decay.

Protect Your Smile with the Help of Qualified Dentists in Woodbury, MN

Your oral health is ever-important to your overall health and well-being. If it has been a while since you have had a dental checkup, reach out to us at Woodlane Family & Cosmetic Dentistry to schedule an appointment.

The Top 10 Foods and Drinks That Can Stain Your Teeth

With the holidays here, you might find yourself enjoying plenty of special treats and goodies. At Woodlane Family & Cosmetic Dentistry, we encourage our patients to enjoy the decadence that the holiday season has to offer, but to do so with a bit of caution.

Why?

Because many of your holiday favorites could end up staining your teeth—not exactly the kind of gift you want to get.

The Top 10 Foods and Drinks That Will Stain Your Teeth

Teeth become stained when pigments from certain foods and drinks build-up in the thin film of protein covering tooth enamel. Some foods also contain a compound called tannin which increases the risk of teeth staining. In addition, highly acidic foods can wear down tooth enamel, further increasing your chances of discolored teeth.

With this in mind, here are the ten most notorious foods and beverages that can lead to stains:

  1. Coffee
  2. Red wine
  3. Tea
  4. Pop
  5. Fruit juices
  6. Tomato-based sauces
  7. Soy sauce
  8. Curry
  9. Balsamic vinegar
  10. Starchy foods, including pasta

You might be more likely to experience teeth discoloration if you have certain risk factors, including underlying dental disease, older age, a history of oral trauma, the use of certain medications, or even a genetic predisposition.

Fortunately, there are things you can do.

3 Quick Tips for Bright, Healthy-Looking Teeth From Our Woodbury Dentist Staff

  1. Avoid stain-causing foods and beverages—meanwhile, eat plenty of nutrient-rich foods like fruits, vegetables, lean protein, and whole grains to support optimal oral health.
  2. If you do consume any of the stain-inducing foods, be sure to brush your teeth immediately after consuming them.
  3. Treat yourself to professional teeth whitening services. While some over-the-counter options can work, they often cause unpleasant side effects like tooth sensitivity, and their results may not be as pronounced as you’d hope. Professional teeth whitening with our Woodbury dentist staff is effective and effecient so you can feel confident in your smile.

Do you live near Woodbury, MN and are looking for a family dentist who can help you and your loved ones have white healthy teeth throughout the year? Contact Woodlane Family & Cosmetic Dentistry today at (651) 731-1560 to schedule your next appointment with our Woodbury dentist team, Dr. Erlandson and Dr. Roehrich.

What is a Tooth Abscess?

Tooth problems have become common in the daily life of individuals. It begins with a little pain when chewing, bad breath, or sometimes yellowing of teeth. It can stay for months unnoticed, but when it blows up, your dental health becomes an issue. One of the most severe tooth problems that should be avoided at all costs are a tooth abscess. A tooth abscess is a pocket of pus that is frequently caused by a bacterial infection. It occurs in different parts of a tooth. There are two common types of tooth abscess; periodontal abscess, which occurs at the gums, and periapical abscess, which appears on the tip of a tooth.

 

Causes of a Tooth Abscess

A tooth abscess, especially, periapical abscess, is caused by an untreated dental cavity or sometimes injuries as a result of dental work. It occurs when bacteria invade the delicate dental pulp and affect nerves, connecting tissues and blood vessels. The entry of the bacteria is mostly through a crack on the tooth or a dental cavity. It then moves downwards of the root, which consequently causes inflammation and swelling at the tip of the tooth.

A dentist treats this condition by draining the tooth and removing the infection. Sometimes draining becomes difficult, but they can still apply the root canal treatment. When the condition worsens, it can call for the total removal of the tooth.

 

Signs and Symptoms

Common symptoms of a tooth abscess include:

  • The sensitivity of your tooth during chewing or biting.
  • Severe throbbing toothache that can cause pain on the jawbone, ear, and neck
  • Swelling in your cheeks and the face
  • Difficulties in swallowing and breathing
  • Fever
  • High sensitivity to temperature
  • Swollen lymph nodes on the neck or under the jaw

 

Factors that Increase Chances of Developing Tooth Abscess

  • Poor dental hygiene – this occurs when you do not take proper care measures to your teeth e.g., not brushing your teeth twice a day.
  • Dry mouth – dry mouth can result in tooth decay.
  • Sugary foods – frequent consumption of sugary foods can increase the chances of developing dental cavities.

If you are experiencing severe dental pain or you have any of the above-mentioned common symptoms of a tooth abscess, please contact your dentist today to book an appointment.

 

Choosing the Right Dentist for You and Your Family’s Needs

Perhaps you’ve just moved to a new community, or maybe your regular family dentist has decided to relocate or retire — whatever the reason, choosing a new family dentist can feel like a daunting task. After all, your family’s oral health is extremely important, and choosing the wrong dentist can have unpleasant consequences. Fortunately, strategies exist designed to help you make the best possible choice. The following are five of them.

Ask Your Dentist for Recommendations

The easiest way to find the right dentist is to ask your current dentist to recommend someone. If your dentist is retiring, he or she may already have a replacement lined up. If you’re moving, your dentist may be able to recommend a good dentist in your new community.

Ask Family and Friends

If your dentist isn’t able to make recommendations, ask family and friends for recommendations — especially those whose families resemble yours. For instance, if you’re married with children, you’ll probably want someone who practices general family dentistry rather than someone who specializes in geriatric dentistry. The best way to go about this is to ask as many people as possible and look for a name or names that keep popping up.

Check Out Online Reviews

Online reviews aren’t just for restaurants and hotels anymore — medical professionals of all types are being reviewed online as well. Searching for reviews on dentists in your area can point you in the right direction. Although it’s important not to let one bad review cause you to jump to conclusions, look for common themes in several reviews and take it from there.

Ask Your Family Doctor or Personal Physician

Another good source of recommendations for a family dentist is your family doctor or personal physician. Medical professionals often know one another, and they often have enough inside knowledge to be able to recommend someone who’s a good fit for your family.

Look on the American Dental Association’s (ADA) Website

You can search the ADA’s website by the community, making it easy to come up with a list of dental professionals in a specific area. Members of the ADA have all firmly pledged to provide top-quality care and to put the dental health of their patients at the very top of their list of priorities.

Please contact Woodlane Family and Cosmetic Dentistry at your convenience for more information on finding the right dentist for your family.

 

The Importance of Having a Good Family Dentist

Many people muddle through life without seeing a dentist on a regular basis until they experience oral health issues that they can no longer ignore. They are then often surprised and discouraged at the cost of treating these issues as well as the pain and discomfort these conditions often cause. However, a significant amount of dental issues can be circumvented or at least slowed down in their progression if they’re caught early enough. Most people are advised to see their dentist every six months for a thorough examination and cleaning, which provides the dentist with the opportunity to check for developing issues and to implement a treatment program.

Following are just three more of the many reasons why having a good family dentist makes good sense.

Regular Dental Cleanings Help Prevent Tooth Decay

Although practicing good oral hygiene is an essential component of preventing tooth decay, it can’t completely stop the buildup of plaque and tartar that can damage tooth enamel to the extent it starts to decay. A good professional cleaning every six months removes plaque and tartar buildup that brushing and flossing don’t get.

You Can Usually Get Multiple Appointments on the Same Day

Having a family dentist who provides care for everyone in your household means that you can usually get multiple appointments on the same day when it’s time for routine checkups. This cuts down on ferrying people around to various appointment locations on different days as well as keeping track of different appointment times.

A Family Dentist Provides Personalized Care

A good family dentist provides the kind of good personalized care you’ll won’t find by just piecing together your family’s dental needs as you go along. For instance, your dentist will have first-hand knowledge of your family’s dental history and be familiar with other medical conditions that may impact treatment options for your dental issues. For instance, if you have Type II diabetes, your family dentist will be able to recommend a course of preventive treatment designed to minimize your chances of developing gum disease.

Our dental practice is designed for patients in all stages of life. Please don’t hesitate to contact us to find out more about why you should make us your family dentist.

Causes of Tooth Pain

It’s no secret that tooth pain is unpleasant. It often goes beyond the pain itself, affecting one’s ability to eat, sleep, and enjoy life. Before your dentist can help alleviate your tooth pain, he’ll need to get to the root of the problem, so let’s explore some common causes of tooth pain.

Gingivitis

Gingivitis is a form of gum disease that occurs after plaque (the sticky, white substance that’s filled with bacteria) that has turned into tartar along the gum lines. The tartar causes the gums to become irritated and swollen. Sometimes, if left untreated, gingivitis can turn into periodontitis, an infection that can lead to the deterioration of the gum line, bone loss, and a loss of teeth.

Regular dental cleanings help reduce plaque and tartar, keeping gums healthy.

Tooth Decay

Tooth decay happens when plaque has formed on the enamel (outside) of the tooth. The bacteria within the plaque produce an acid, which eventually begins to eat away at the enamel. Over time, this erosion leaves the tooth enamel vulnerable to cavities. While cavities themselves aren’t usually painful, untreated tooth decay can expose the tooth’s dentin (the inside of the tooth). This part of the tooth is sensitive and needs the protection of natural enamel or cosmetic dentistry solutions to avoid being painful.

senior couple

Bruxism

Bruxism is the medical term for teeth-grinding. People who grind their teeth may not even realize they’re doing it—especially if the habit happens while they’re sleeping. Bruxism can lead to a host of oral health problems, including:

  • Chipped, fractured, or cracked teeth
  • Flattened tops of teeth
  • Facial pain
  • Sensitivity to cold, heat, or pressure
  • Chewed wounds on the tongue or cheek

Inflammation of the Tooth Pulp (Pulpitis)

The pulp is in the center of the tooth where the nerves and tissue live. When it becomes inflamed or irritated—often as a result of decay or trauma—it can cause tremendous sensitivity to various stimuli (hot and cold temperatures, in particular).

 

If you’re in the Woodbury, MN area and experiencing tooth pain, contact our team at Woodlane Family & Cosmetic Dentistry as soon as possible. We’d love to help you feel better!

 

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