Missing a Tooth

Has it been hard for you to smile due to a missing tooth? According to the Kelton study for Invisalign, teeth are the most standout feature people notice when meeting the first time. About 66% will likely remember you due to having beautiful teeth and smile. If you have a missing tooth, especially in the front, it’s hard to smile. You not only lose confidence in yourselves, but missing teeth causes long-term damages to your facial structure and the way you bite. However, there are a few options for you to regain back a healthy beautiful smile. 

First let’s start with doing nothing. When a tooth is pulled malocclusion can happen if we don’t get a replacement for the missing tooth. Malocclusion is a condition where our teeth shift, and it changes the way we bite. Teeth are supposed to touch one another so when a tooth is extracted, both the adjacent tooth and the tooth opposing the missing tooth will shift. This means that you will see a change in your smile such as gaps, uneven alignment, and a tooth longer than the others. Another consequence is, loss of jawbone and gum tissue, which results in an older appearance because of a sunken look to your facial features.

However, we can prevent all the consequences of not replacing a missing tooth or teeth. There are few options with the pros and cons for each of them.

Dental Implants: 

Dental implants are the most effective way to replace a missing tooth. Not only is it durable, but its lifespan is longer compared to the others. This is also the nearest thing to a natural tooth available today. Implants are made from titanium that is safe for your body. It is surgically placed in the jawbone where you are having a missing tooth. However, the process is a bit longer than the others. Dental implant consists of the implant itself, abutment, and a crown. This does not a one-day procedure, but at least 3 months. Everyone is different, and it all just depends on if you need bone graft material, how fast your implant settles in, or if you have periodontal disease. This may seem like a long journey for some, but the reward for waiting is much more beneficial for long term durability, and lifespan of about 15 to 20 years.

Dental Bridges:

 Dental bridges are good for people who want a faster solution that does not require surgery. This procedure takes 3 weeks and just two visits to your dentist. It is more affordable than the implant. However, with dental bridges, the dentist would have to shave down the adjacent teeth, which are your two good permanent teeth to use as an anchor. The lifespan of the dental bridge is about 5-7 years, which is shorter than the implant. This does not help with keeping the bone in the area from atrophy occurring though. You will continue to lose bone in that area over time compared to the implant that will secure the bone indefinitely. Hygiene will be harder to keep up with because you can’t floss normal. You’ll have to buy a special floss that will get under your bridge since food can get caught there. Unfortunately, for the perfectionist, dental bridges are not as aesthetically pleasing than an implant. 

Removable Partial Denture (RPD):

 Removable partial denture known as a flipper, is the least expensive and the fastest thing you can have after an extraction to walk out the office without a missing tooth. However, it is primarily for esthetic purposes. You can’t chew with it on because it is a resin base that can break easily. You would have to take it off every night still leaving you with a gap that will create shifting of your teeth and bone loss. In order to hold the artificial tooth or teeth in place, a bulky plastic frame will be sitting in your mouth all day. Flipper is best used for just a temporary solution until you get a permanent replacement.

With all the options given to you, it is still ideal to speak to your dentist to help you choose what is best for you. Not everyone is a good candidate for implants, that’s why we offer free consultation here at Grand Mission Dentistry to make sure you are a good fit for an implant. Give us a call or make an appointment today so we can make sure you are on the right track in replacing a missing tooth.









What To Do When Your Extracted Tooth Bleeds?

Usually, mouth bleeding stops after a span of 24 hours from the time of your tooth extraction. Until then small amount of blood oozing out from the site of your surgery should not be intimidating! One of the nurses of your dental office generally provides you with a gauze, which you need to hold against your affected tooth.

Often, dental packs are also provided to you. When you notice blood, you need to hold the dental pack on the socket of the bleeding site and press it (not too hard) over there for about 20 mins. Once the bleeding stops, an amount of blood clot accumulates in the socket at the bleeding site. You should not attempt to dislodge this clot as that would resume the bleeding!

A quick glance at the things to do and things not to do if bleeding persists after your tooth extraction:

  • In case you are holding a gauze, take 2 to 3 at a time. It becomes more effective
  • Do not forget to change the gauze every 30 to 45 minutes.
  • Avoid spitting.
  • Avoid smoking, chewing tobacco or even drinking through a straw, for at least 7 days after your surgery.
  • Avoid too much of physical activity – it increases your blood pressure and may incite further bleeding!
  • Sit or take rest in a semi-upright position – preferably in a recliner or with at least 2 pillows in your bed.
  • Do not panic. Bleeding up to 24 hrs (or even 48 hrs) is normal.

Your diet after the extraction:

Post extraction there is a strict diet to be followed and this mainly comprises of soft and supple, no-chewing foods that can be easily gulped down. This is advised for at least the next 24 to 48 hrs after the extraction. However, after the numbness is gone a little bit of chewing activity would minimize the stiffness in the jaws and teeth and curtail the pain too.

Foods to have post your tooth extraction therefore includes:

  • A lot of fluids, especially on the day of your surgery
  • Extremely hot foods should be strictly avoided
  • Avoid using straw for the first few days at least
  • Take pureed foods preferably, like : soups, puddings, yogurt, milk shakes etc.
  • Avoid foods like nuts, popcorn, fruits with seeds or anything that might get tapped in that socket.

A tooth extraction patient often goes irregular with his or her daily routine, in order to cope up with the pain, numbness and uneasiness. But one should strictly keep these things in mind:

  • Do not sip meal as nourishment is very essential during the recovery days!
  • In case of being a diabetic patient, one needs to maintain his or her normal diet. In this event, consulting the dentist is crucial.

A few tooth extraction queries resolved:

Where to get my wisdom tooth removal done?

Your molars are aching? Stressed with overcrowded teeth? Now, if you are new to a place, then you have more work to do! You need to choose your dental office and that depends upon a few factors. You need to ask yourself these:

  • Is it near to my workplace?
  • Does it offer Saturday appointments?
  • Do they offer suitable timings so that I can move to work after seeing the dentist?
  • Can I get same day crowns done from there?

The experts and Grand Mission Dentistry are committed to carry out the extraction cases as comfortably as possible and with minimal discomfort to the patient. They also provide instructions to make sure you heal quickly and prevent any further complications!

Does Medicaid pay for my dental work?

Less than 10% of Americans who avail health care with the help of Medicare, are among the Medicaid participants. Medicare, being the traditional insurance provider does not cover routine services such as screenings, dental exams, cleanings, fillings, extractions etc. Medicaid has a separate purpose altogether. It is the main channel for providing health care coverage to low income groups including children, the elderly, pregnant women as well as people with disabilities.

Medicaid is required to abide by the federal rules. Therefore, the dental coverage by Medicaid varies from state to state – some may cover only emergency services, whereas 4 of the states do not provide any dental coverage at all. In some cases, adults are offered a limited number of covered services as compared to children or offer no coverage at all. However, the state Medicaid programs are required by the federal rules to cover comprehensive dental services for children. Coverage for adult dental services is optional.

What are the Pros of a private insurance plan as far as my dental treatments are concerned?

While programs like Medicare, Medicaid etc. are social health coverage programs to provide assistance to the entire population by pooling resources and spreading the financial burden in the hour of need. The overall risk of health expenses is hence shared by the entire mass, with the help of these social schemes.

Private health insurance on the other hand refers to the insurance plans that are bought outside the insurance marketplace. The distinctive feature of these plans is that they require you to incur huge monthly expenses, as they come with a set of added advantages, some of which have been listed here:

  1. Choosing a doctor of your preference – Private insurances usually allow you to choose a doctor within or outside your network. They function as follows:
  • HMO (Health Maintenance Organizations) allows you to select a doctor from within the network
  • PPO (Preferred Provider Organization) may allow you to choose a doctor from outside the network, but with an additional charge.
  • Finally, an Indemnity Health Insurance allows one to choose any doctor or hospital from within or outside the network, without any additional charges!
  1. Shorter waiting times– Since these are nit public health care facilities, they remain less busy. Therefore, treatments are done with quickly and within a shorter span of time.
  2. No restricted visiting hours– This is of great help when you need to handle multiple responsibilities at the same time. You can visit the patient according to your own convenience.
  3. Availability of private rooms– This ensures greater comfort fro the patient. TVs, phones, better food help the patient relax in an enhanced environment!

The discussion so far, was all about the virtues of a private plan. But as there is always an other side of the coin, private insurances have their share of drawbacks too. And drawbacks are not all about the expenses only! Private insurances do not cover all health conditions.

Consequently, therefore, you will have to choose an insurance policy that will both suit your health care needs and fit in your budget too. However, unfortunately, most of the time it is next to impossible to find the perfect scheme for yourself and people often end up making the wrong choice! It either makes them bear huge out-of-the pocket costs or switch treatment alternatives!

Are there emergency dental clinics in Richmond that are open in holidays?

An overall survey reveals that Houston is yet to get any 24-hour dental clinic. However, there are many dental offices that remain open on Saturdays and/or Sundays. You might come across offices that are open in the after-hours too. And what more, they do not charge you extra for the excess amount of working hours that they putting in!

Grand Mission Dentistry could be your chosen destination due to its flexible timings, if you find dental care services surrounding the areas of Richmond, Texas. The office remains open for different time schedules on different days of the week. This actually works to the benefit of individuals across various types of profession. You can choose your preferred timing. Whether it’s an early morning appointment on Friday or an after-office dental visit at the start of the week that you want, you can get it. Additionally, it remains open every alternate Saturdays too!