My Blog
By Arthur S. Benson, D.D.S.
November 22, 2021
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: teeth whitening  

Teeth whitening is one of the most common cosmetic dentistry procedures today. However, with so many options for professional and over-the-counter products, it can be difficult to know which type of teeth whitening service is best for you. If you are interested in professional teeth whitening in Akron, OH, reach out to Dr. Arthur Benson of Akron, OH Family Dentist.

Professional vs. Over the Counter Methods

There is a wide range of teeth whitening products and services available today. However, each can have varying degrees of effectiveness and cost due to the ingredients and concentrations used in the products. With professional teeth whitening in Akron, OH, done at a dentist's office, the main advantage is safety and effectiveness, as these services are done under the direct care of a professional with stronger ingredients than other methods. Over-the-counter products may provide results for teeth whitening for some, but they will generally take much longer and pose potential safety risks if used incorrectly. While over-the-counter whitening products such as toothpaste and whitening strips may work for some people, most people may see faster, safer, and more effective teeth whitening with professional dental services.

Options for Professional Teeth Whitening

Professional teeth whitening is generally done in one of two different ways. One is an in-office whitening procedure, which can be done in less than an hour, in which your dentist will apply hydrogen periodize solution to the surface of your teeth and use a laser light for fast, effective results. The second option is to create custom-fitted molds for your teeth which your dentist will fabricate and give you to take home and use at your leisure with a whitening gel for a few applications. Both options for professional teeth whitening differ from over-the-counter alternatives and provide safe, individualized care for longer-lasting results.

If you are interested in discussing the different types of teeth whitening in Akron, OH, further with your dentist or want to make your first appointment today, please reach out to Dr. Benson of Akron, OH Family Dentist by calling (330) 666-8757.

By Arthur S. Benson, D.D.S.
November 22, 2021
Category: Oral Health
Tags: oral health  

More than 50 million Americans care for an adult neighbor, friend or family member who can't care for themselves. A major part of that care is looking out for their health—including their teeth and gums.

Being a caregiver to someone is a labor of love—but it can be overwhelming. And with oral health especially, it's easy to miss signs of an emerging issue in their mouths that could impact the quality of their lives.

But you can be proactive about your loved one's oral health. In recognition of Family Caregivers Month in November, here are 4 guidelines that can help you ensure their teeth and gums are as healthy as possible.

Make oral hygiene easier for them. Brushing and flossing are basic to a dental disease prevention strategy. But an adult who needs care might have trouble performing these tasks: They may lack the cognitive ability or physical dexterity required. For the latter, larger handled-tooth brushes, floss threaders or water flossers can provide them better maneuverability. With cognitive decline, though, you may have to personally assist them with their hygiene tasks.

Watch for dry mouth. Also known as xerostomia, chronic dry mouth is caused by a lack of adequate saliva needed to fight disease-causing bacteria and to neutralize acid that can erode tooth enamel. For a variety of reasons, older adults are more prone to chronic dry mouth than other age groups. When this occurs, speak with their doctor about their medications (some can cause xerostomia). And, encourage your loved one to drink more water or use products that boost saliva production.

Accompany them to the dentist. Just as you would with other aspects of their health, become an active participant in their dental care. Forging a partnership with their dentist can provide you the information and guidance you need to better manage their daily home care. You can also bring up issues you've noticed with their oral health that can help guide their dentist's treatment.

Monitor their existing dental work. Your loved one may have full or partial dentures, or dental work like crowns or bridges. These existing restorations extend their dental function and protect their oral health from further disease. It's important, then, to have existing dental work checked on a regular basis to ensure its in good shape and functioning properly.

As the old saying goes, "Healthy mouth, healthy body." This is especially true for adults who need ongoing care. Keeping their teeth and gums are as healthy as possible will help them enjoy better health overall.

If you would like more information about oral care for an older adult, please contact us or schedule a consultation. To learn more, read the Dear Doctor magazine article “Aging & Dental Health.”

By Arthur S. Benson, D.D.S.
November 17, 2021
Category: Cosmetic Dentistry
Tags: cosmetic dentistry  

How many times do you smile a day? If you are not confident with your smile to grin without a second thought, let Dr. Arthur Benson in Akron, OH, use cosmetic dentistry to help you feel good about your smile again. Cosmetic dentistry can improve your smile in many different ways. 

Straighten Crooked Teeth

Whether you had braces when you were a child to straighten your teeth (and failed to wear your retainer nightly) or not, orthodontic treatment may be something in your future to repair your crooked teeth. You can opt for traditional metal braces or clear plastic aligners, aka Invisalign, to straighten your teeth.

Whiten Stained Teeth

Discoloration of the teeth can occur due to your lifestyle habits, taking certain medications, or simply genetics. Whatever the case may be, teeth whitening is a cosmetic dentistry solution that can enhance the color of your teeth, leaving you with a brighter smile that you will want to show off. 

Fix Chipped Teeth

Your teeth may be chipped for any number of reasons, such as chewing on pen caps or ice, brittleness due to age, or trauma. Whatever the case may be, in Akron, OH, cosmetic dentistry like bonding can fix your chipped teeth so you don’t have to be embarrassed any longer. 

Close Gaps Between Teeth

You can close gaps between your teeth with orthodontic treatment, but depending on how severe the gap is or if you don’t want to get braces, there are other options available. One option is porcelain veneers. This cosmetic dentistry solution consists of thin shells of porcelain being placed over your natural tooth. Cosmetic bonding may also take care of the issue. 

Replace Missing Teeth

If you are missing teeth, it is important to fill those spots. Over time, missing teeth can result in the recession of the jawbone, resulting in your teeth migrating and the risk of losing more teeth. In addition, your facial shape can change. There are a few different options you have available to replace missing teeth, including bridges and dental implants, depending on your situation. 

Akron, OH cosmetic dentistry can help you improve the overall appearance of your smile. If you would like to learn more about your options, call (330) 666-8757 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Benson.

By Arthur S. Benson, D.D.S.
November 12, 2021
Category: Oral Health
Tags: tooth pain  

While mouth pain can certainly get your attention, what exactly hurts may be difficult to identify. It might seem to emanate from a single tooth, or a group of teeth. Then again, it might not be clear whether it's coming from teeth or from the gums.

Still, it's important to pinpoint the cause as much as possible to treat it correctly. One of the main questions we often want to answer is whether the cause originates from within a tooth or without.

In the first case, tooth decay may have entered the pulp at the center of the tooth. The pulp contains nerve bundles that can come under attack from decay and transmit pain signals. Incidentally, if the pain suddenly goes away, it may simply mean the nerves have died and not the infection.

The decay can also spread into the root canals leading to the root and supporting bone, and then make the jump into the gum tissues. One possible sign of this is the one mentioned earlier—you can't quite tell if the pain is from the tooth or the surrounding gums.

The root canals could also serve as a transportation medium for infection in the other direction. In that case, gum disease has advanced into the bone tissues around a tooth near its roots. The infection can then cross into the tooth. Again, both a tooth and the gum tissue around it can become diseased.

We have effective treatments for individual occurrences of interior tooth decay or gum disease: The former usually requires a root canal treatment to remove infected tissue and fill and seal the tooth from future infection; we alleviate gum disease by removing the dental plaque causing it and helping the gum tissues to heal. But combined tooth and gum infection scenarios are more difficult to treat, have a poorer prognosis and may require specialists.

To reduce the risk of either tooth decay or gum disease developing into this greater problem, it's best to take action at the first sign of trouble. So, see your dentist as soon as possible when you encounter oral pain or if you notice swollen or bleeding gums. The earlier we treat the initial outbreak of disease, be it tooth decay or gum disease, the better your chances of a successful and happy outcome.

If you would like more information on tooth pain, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Confusing Tooth Pain.”

By Arthur S. Benson, D.D.S.
November 02, 2021
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: celebrity smiles  

Even though coronavirus lockdowns have prevented TV hosts from taping live shows, they're still giving us something to watch via virtual interviews. In the process, we're given occasional glimpses into their home life. During a Tonight Show interview with Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson and his wife, R & B performer Ciara, Jimmy Fallon's daughter Winnie interrupted with breaking news: She had just lost a tooth.

It was an exciting and endearing moment, as well as good television. But with 70 million American kids under 18, each with about 20 primary teeth to lose, it's not an uncommon experience. Nevertheless, it's still good to be prepared if your six-year-old is on the verge of losing that first tooth.

Primary teeth may be smaller than their successors, but they're not inconsequential. Besides providing young children with the means to chew solid food and develop speech skills, primary teeth also serve as placeholders for the corresponding permanent teeth as they develop deep in the gums. That's why it's optimal for baby teeth to remain intact until they're ready to come out.

When that time comes, the tooth's roots will begin to dissolve and the tooth will gradually loosen in the socket. Looseness, though, doesn't automatically signal a baby tooth's imminent end. But come out it will, so be patient.

Then again, if your child, dreaming of a few coins from the tooth fairy, is antsy to move things along, you might feel tempted to use some old folk method for dispatching the tooth—like attaching the tooth to a door handle with string and slamming the door, or maybe using a pair of pliers (yikes!). One young fellow in an online video tied his tooth to a football with a string and let it fly with a forward pass.

Here's some advice from your dentist: Don't. Trying to pull a tooth whose root hasn't sufficiently dissolved could damage your child's gum tissues and increase the risk of infection. It could also cause needless pain.

Left alone, the tooth will normally fall out on its own. If you think, though, that it's truly on the verge (meaning it moves quite freely in the socket), you can pinch the tooth between your thumb and middle finger with a clean tissue and give it a gentle tug. If it's ready, it should pop out. If it doesn't, leave it be for another day or two before trying again.

Your child losing a tooth is an exciting moment, even if it isn't being broadcast on national television. It will be more enjoyable for everyone if you let that moment come naturally.

If you would like more information on the importance and care of primary teeth, please contact us or schedule a consultation. To learn more, read the Dear Doctor magazine article “Importance of Baby Teeth.”

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