Today's Dental of Boxborough

Allergy Season Can Affect Your Dental Health – Boxborough, Acton, MA

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Today's Dental of Boxborough, Acton, Boxborough, MAIt’s allergy season. Many of you are taking medication for your seasonal allergies. But did you know that it may affect your dental health? Medications for certain health conditions can affect your oral health. While most people take medicine to better their physical well-being, a variety of prescribed medications can affect your teeth.

Antihistamines for stuffy nose and runny eyes – allergies - can cause dry mouth syndrome. Dry mouth syndrome can lead to sore gums which make your mouth more prone to infection. But these are not the only medications that can change your oral health.

Contraceptives and blood pressure medications may cause mouth sores as well as gum inflammation and discoloration.

Blood thinners can interfere with your ability to form blood clots or cause heavy bleeding after you have a tooth pulled.

Anti-seizure medications can cause an overgrowth of gum tissue which can make it difficult to practice good oral hygiene.

When you're taking more than one medication, regardless of if it is prescribed or over-the-counter, you can change the effects of both medications. If you have an upcoming dental appointment or need to schedule a dental appointment, it is important to keep your dentist informed about all the medications you are taking.

For an appointment contact Today’s Dental of Boxborough.


Teeth Whitening Enhances Your Smile - Acton, Boxborough, MA

Joseph Coupal - Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Today's Dental of Boxborough, MACosmetic dentistry is generally elective rather than necessary. It focuses on improving the appearance of a person's smile and teeth. Teeth whitening is one of the most popular cosmetic dentistry procedures.

In-office teeth whitening or dental bleaching gets your teeth whiter than over the office products. With whiter natural looking teeth you will have the confidence to smile wider. But teeth whitening also give you a younger look as well.

Age changes the mineral structure or your teeth which causes them to darken. But also, overtime lifestyle habits like smoking, as well as food and drink such as wine and coffee, along with antibiotics will stain your teeth causing them to darken as well.

However, there are many different ways to whiten teeth: bleaching strips, pens, gel, and lasers, and most are traditionally done at home. However, in-office whitening techniques are more effective and will last longer. Additionally, some dental work will not lighten through teeth whitening, so whatever option you choose, it is always best to consult your dentist before you begin any teeth whitening procedure.

With teeth whitening in a dentist’s chair, patients will receive a deep dental bleaching which will whiten the entire tooth rather than just the front. Teeth are porous, so whitening the entire tooth is essential to attain a bright natural look faster and more effectively.

A whiter smile is a younger more confident smile which changes how you present yourself, how you interact and how others perceive you. Contact Today’s Dental of Boxborough for a teeth whitening consultation and see how in office dental bleaching can change your smile.


Finding a Pediatric Dentist - Acton, MA

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, April 04, 2017

Today's Dental of  Boxborough, Boxborough, MAWhether your child has a gummy grin with a couple of brand-new teeth or already has a mouthful of baby teeth, getting regular dental care with a dentist they are comfortable with can help ensure that they maintain a healthy smile as they grow. As with your child's pediatrician, you'll want to choose a competent, patient pediatric dentist who is understands working with children.

Pediatric dentists are different than standard dentists because they have completed two to three years of training beyond dental school and are well-versed in child psychology, growth, and development, according to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD). You can also expect them to offer a welcoming staff and a cheerful office -- often complete with kid-size play equipment, popular video games, and a waiting room full of toys and kids' books. Other child-friendly details such as sunglasses to shield kids' eyes from the bright lights during an exam, toothbrushes with characters, and favorite shows playing on televisions can make the visit less intimidating and more enjoyable for kids.

To find a pediatric dentist in Acton, MA, ask your child's pediatrician, other parents, or your own dentist for recommendations. Local pharmacists and family doctors can also sometimes give you a few names. If you are relocating, ask your child's current dentist if he can refer you to someone in your new hometown.

Evaluating the Office

Once you've gotten the name of a dentist you want to try, meeting her in person and seeing the office can help you determine if she is the right fit for your child. Consider these questions.

Before the visit, ask the office:

  • Does the dentist have special training or interest in treating children?
  • Is the dentist a member of the American Dental Association and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry?
  • Is the dental office set up for children? For example, does it offer toys, books, games, or child-sized furniture?
  • How does the dental office manage emergencies? (Many practices have an answering service available during off hours.)
  • Is the office conveniently located near your home or your child's school?
  • Does the practice accept your dental benefit plan?

After the visit, ask yourself:

  • Was your child seen promptly?
  • Were you asked for a complete medical and dental history for your child?
  • Was the dentist gentle but thorough when examining your child's mouth?
  • Did the dentist or staff talk to your child, encouraging her involvement in dental health?
  • Were you informed about your child's tooth development, the causes and prevention of dental disease, and appropriate dental care at home?
  • Were your questions treated with concern and respect?
  • Was the visit positive for your child?

For more information on Today’s Dental of Boxborough, contact us.

Parents


Finding a Pediatric Dentist in Acton, MA

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Today's Dental of Boxborough, Boxborough, Acton, MAIt is recommended that kids should visit a pediatric dentist when their first tooth comes in or by their first birthday. Our checklist will help you pick the best pediatric dentist to fit you and your family’s dental needs.

Finding a pediatric dentist that takes good care of your child's teeth, while making the experience relaxed and fun, sets the stage for a lifetime of healthy teeth. Use our checklist to help you find the right dentist for your family.

Finding pediatric dentists

  • Ask for recommendations from friends and family.
  • Ask for a referral from your pediatrician.
  • Search local websites for recommendations.
  • You will find pediatric dentists working in medical centers, private practices and dental schools.
  • Ask about training: A pediatric dentist has two additional years of residency training for babies, kids, teens and kids with special needs.

Care provided to your child

Your child will see a pediatric dentist from infancy through adolescence. Here is what kind of care you can expect:

  • Oral exams and risk assessment for cavities for infants.
  • Knowledge of dealing with dental habits, such as thumb sucking, teeth grinding or pacifier use.
  • Repair of tooth cavities or other tooth defects.
  • Preventive dental care, including cleaning, sealants and fluoride treatment.
  • Assessment of normal tooth development.
  • Assessment of the need for orthodontics to straighten teeth or correct improper bite.
  • Manage and prevent gum diseases, including periodontal disease and gingivitis.
  • Manage dental and oral conditions, including short frenulae and ulcers.
  • Care of knocked-out teeth, fractured teeth or displaced teeth.

Parent and child education

It is important your dentist and their staff educate you and your child on proper dental care at home. Your pediatric dentist should talk to you about the following:

  • Education on how diet and drinks affect teeth.
  • Educating parents on the proper care of infant or baby teeth.
  • Educating kids and teens on the proper care of teeth.
  • Demonstration on the proper way to brush and floss.
  • Education on the proper handling of knocked-out teeth or fractured teeth.
  • Education for the parents on when they can expect their child's permanent teeth to come in.

Atmosphere

The pediatric dentist offices should be catering to children, with colorful paint and hands-on toys in the waiting room to make the experience fun. Your dentist should also come across as friendly and welcoming.

  • Is the dentist office kid-friendly?
  • Are the instruments appropriate for your child's mouth?
  • Is the office staff friendly and accessible?
  • Is the dentist friendly and accessible?
  • Do the dentist and staff explain to your child what to expect?
  • Is the atmosphere friendly and positive?
  • How does your dentist respond to a scared or crying child?

For more information on pediatric dentists in Acton, MA, contact Today’s Dental of Boxborough.

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Regular Dental Checkups Can Save You Money – Acton, Boxborough, Boston

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Today's Dental of BoxboroughStrange but true, spending $100 on your teeth can actually save you thousands. The average cost of a dental exam and cleaning, without insurance, is $50 - $135. If you have dental insurance, your out-of-pocket expense may range from nominal to nothing for basic dental care services including X-rays.

This can save you thousands of dollars in the long run.

If you have dental problems like tooth decay, gum disease or even oral cancer, regular dental visits give your dentist a chance to catch it early. With any dental issue, this is key. The earlier your dentist diagnoses a problem the easier it is to treat. Gum disease left untreated for too long may result in the need for extensive and expensive treatment. Regular dental checkups allow you to stay ahead of dental problems, which means thousands of dollars eventually saved.

A professional dental cleaning is also a must because it's the only way to effectively remove tartar or hardened plaque. You should brush and floss regularly, but still that’s not enough. Besides tartar being unattractive with a brown or yellowish tint, it also contains cavity-causing bacteria. Preventing cavities and paying for multiple fillings will save you thousands in the long run.

But dental health is related to your physical health. Therefore, the most important reason to invest in regular dental exams is the positive impact they have on your overall health. Recent studies have shown that there’s a link between periodontal disease and heart disease; when the former is present, the latter is twice as likely.

Did you know that gum disease can have a domino effect on your health? The bacteria caused by periodontal disease can enter your bloodstream and attach to your heart's blood vessels, causing dangerous blood clots. Another scenario is that the plaque buildup caused by periodontal disease can cause the heart's blood vessels to swell.

Regular checkups and cleanings are not only money-saving but life-saving. To schedule a dental appointment, contact Today’s Dental of Boxborough.


Dental Implants for Replacing Missing Teeth – Boxborough, Acton, Boston, MA

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Today's Dental of Boxborough, Dental implantsDental implants are frequently the best treatment option for replacing missing teeth. Rather than resting on the gum line like removable dentures, or using adjacent teeth as anchors like fixed bridges, dental implants are long-term replacements that are placed in the jawbone.

Statistics show that 69% of adults ages 35 to 44 have lost at least one permanent tooth to an accident, gum disease, a failed root canal or tooth decay. Additionally, by age 74, 26% of adults have lost all of their permanent teeth.

With today’s dental technology there is another, better option for patients who are missing teeth. Instead of removable dentures or fixed bridges, dental implants are long-term replacements that take the place of permanent teeth both in appearance and functionality. Composed of a titanium root that is place in the jawbone, dental implants never slip or make embarrassing noises that advertise the fact that you have "false teeth," and never decay like teeth anchoring fixed bridges. Because dental implants fuse with the jawbone, bone loss is generally not a problem.

Even after 20 years, the vast majority of dental implants placed dentists and oral surgeons continue to function at peak performance. More importantly, the recipients of those early dental implants are still satisfied they made the right choice. If properly cared for, dental implants can last a lifetime.

If you are missing several teeth in the same area of your mouth, you cam enjoy the confidence and lifestyle benefits that come with dental implants. For more information, contact Today’s Dental of Boxborough.


Impacted Tooth and Can Cause Many Problems – Acton, Boxborough, Boston, MA

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, March 07, 2017

Today's Dental of Boxborough, Acton, Boxborough, MAA tooth that only partially grows through the gums is an impacted tooth. An impacted tooth happens because another tooth blocks it from erupting, or because it grows in crookedly. The tooth that is most likely to become impacted is the third molar because it typically erupts between ages 17 and 21. Because it is the last tooth to appear, there is often no room left for it to fit, causing it to become impacted.

An impacted tooth does not always lead to pain or discomfort, but it can cause other problems. Because the tooth is partially erupted it can create an opening in the gum where food can accumulate. This can lead to gum infection and tooth decay. Impacted teeth can also push on the teeth next to it, causing all your teeth to shift.

Because of the potential issues related to impacted teeth, it’s often recommended to have wisdom teeth extracted before age of 21. Actually, the younger you are the better and the faster the tissue and bone will heal after the extraction. However, if you are over 21 and begin to have symptoms of impacted teeth, it is important that you take care of the problem as well.

No matter what age you are, if an impacted tooth is causing you pain, soreness, sensitivity or inflammation, contact Today's Dental of Boxborough. Get treatment than unnecessarily endure pain and discomfort!


Dental Veneers: Porcelain or Composite – Acton, Boxborough, Boston, MA

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Today's Dental of Boxborough, Boxborough, Acton, MADental veneers are the solution to many common teeth problems, and they are an option for those looking for a ‘smile make-over’. Popularity and demand for this procedure continues to increase as people become more aware of it as an option. Dental veneers are made of either porcelain or composite resin and are able to fix crooked teeth, spaced teeth, chipped or damaged teeth and stained teeth.

Dental veneers: Composite vs. porcelain veneers

Dental veneers are bonded to teeth, creating a natural look. Veneers are also a popular choice for those looking to avoid braces. But what is the decision between porcelain and composite resin veneers?

Porcelain dental veneers: The advantages and disadvantages

Porcelain dental veneers are custom made for your teeth and are well known for their natural appearance. The pros include:

  • Porcelain veneers are extremely durable and can last for up to 15 years if taken care of properly.
  • Porcelain’s translucent properties create a very natural look.
  • Resistant to stains caused by food, drink and cigarettes.
  • Applying veneers is a small procedure requiring minimal drilling.

Some of the disadvantages are:

  • Porcelain veneers require two visits to the dentist.
  • They are more expensive than composite resin veneers.
  • Porcelain veneers can’t be repaired and must be replaced if damaged.

The pros and cons of composite resin dental veneers

Composite resin dental veneers are bonded to the teeth with resin cement, which is an extremely quick and easy procedure. The other advantages include:

  • The process requires only one visit to the dentist.
  • Composite veneers are cheaper than porcelain veneers.
  • They are easy and affordable to repair.
  • Composite resin veneers are versatile and easy to remove, replace and repair.

Composite resin veneers have some disadvantages too:

  • They are less durable than porcelain veneers.
  • Composite veneers are widely considered to have a less natural look than porcelain veneers.

Not all teeth are suitable for dental veneers, so consult Today’s Dental of Boxborough about your eligibility first. We will also help you to make a decision between porcelain and composite veneers. Contact us.

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Clear Braces or Dental Veneers for Crooked Teeth – Acton, Boxborough, Boston, MA

Joseph Coupal - Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Today's Dental of BoxboroughAs an adult, you may need braces, but you certainly don’t want metal brackets on your teeth. You have another option, clear braces. But, even so, at Today’s Dental of Boxborough we often get questioned about the choice between dental veneers or clear aligners.

Veneers or Clear Braces for Crooked Teeth

Dental veneers are an option when you are considering improving your smile. When you have crooked teeth, you most certainly want to improve the appearance of your teeth. Veneers can do that. But, there is more going on than just crooked teeth. Veneers only cover up dental imperfections, they don’t correct them. This means that you are only covering up and not fixing periodontal problems. Additionally, veneers are applied to the front side of the teeth only, this requires the removal of the surface tooth enamel which is an irreversible procedure.

Veneers are more of a temporary fix rather than a long-term fix. They usually need to be replaced every 5 to 10 years. While braces can be expensive, the cost of replacing veneers can be very expensive in the long run. Food, drink and lifestyle habits can damage and stain veneers.

If left untreated, many orthodontic problems can often lead to more serious dental and health issues. For straighter teeth and a proper bite, contact Today’s Dental of Boxborough.


Teeth Whitening for the Best Results – Acton, Boxborough, MA

Joseph Coupal - Thursday, February 16, 2017

Today's Dental of Boxborough, MALike a shiny new watch or a sparkling personality, white teeth are an ornamentation. Both men and women are attracted to a bright white smile. Additional research has shown job applicants with white teeth are more likely to be hired than yellow-toothed applicants.

From whitening toothpastes and over-the-counter strips to dental office teeth whitening procedures, all tooth-whitening measures employ hydrogen peroxide to clean away stains. The only differences are the concentrations of hydrogen peroxide employed and how they’re held against your teeth.

Of course, cost is also a factor. Starting with the least-potent (but least-expensive) whitener, toothpastes contain 1% to 1.5% concentrations of hydrogen peroxide. That’s adequate to clean surface stains but it won’t penetrate your tooth enamel. The enamel tends to hold the deepest, hardest-to-remove blemishes—that patina of black coffee or red wine that gradually accumulates on your smile like vehicle pollution on the sides of old brick buildings.

So if your teeth are seriously stained, a whitening toothpaste alone won’t get the job done—no matter how hard you brush. In fact, brushing forcefully can damage your gums and is never advisable.

Over-the-counter gels or strips are the next level up on the hydrogen-peroxide/price spectrum. They’re usually in the 6% to 10% range. At these concentrations, the hydrogen peroxide can penetrate microscopic holes and fissures in your enamel to bubble away stains.

While over-the-counter options can be very effective, the key is to apply them evenly and keep them on as long as directed. Strips are often better than gels because they stay in place. If the strips or gel are applied incorrectly, your teeth could look unevenly white. Gum irritation is also possible.

But remember this important caveat: whitening agents do not work on caps, crowns or fillings. If you’ve had some dental work done, you should speak with your dentist before you whiten your teeth to be sure the results will look uniform.

Another step up in both cost and potency is dentist supplied “tray-and-gel systems,” which contain hydrogen peroxide in the 10% to 15% range and can cost several hundred dollars. After custom fitting your mouth with a mold, your dentist supplies a take home tray and whitening gel for you to use at home. The custom tray ensures the gel is evenly applied, and it can produce some pretty impressive results.

The final and most effective option is settling into your dentist’s chair for a series of 10- to 15-minute whitening treatments. With hydrogen peroxide concentrations as high as 35%, these treatments can make your smile a dozen shades brighter.

Some dental experts caution against trying some of the more intensive whitening procedures at home. The American Dental Association (ADA) says that while published research suggests most bleaching procedures are relatively safe, there can be some damage to the tissues in a person's mouth. The group advises people to consult with their dentist before trying a new whitening procedure. Additionally, a patient’s tooth discoloration may be caused by a specific problem that either will not be affected by whitening agents and/or may be a sign of a disease or condition that requires dental therapy.

So how white should you go? That’s really a personal preference thing. While some people want their teeth as white as possible, people with “natural” looking teeth scored just as highly in terms of attractiveness when compared to people with ultra-bright white smiles.

It’s also possible to over-whiten your teeth. If you whiten excessively, the tooth enamel can actually become translucent, which can make the teeth look blue or gray. That’s not harmful in the long-term, but blue teeth isn’t a hot look.

While über-white teeth may not be any healthier than stained teeth, there are dental health benefits associated with a whiter smile. People who’ve had their teeth whitened are better at brushing and flossing,” he says. When you’re proud of something, you take better care it.

For more information on in-office teeth whitening, contact Today’s Dental of Boxborough.

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