Westminster, MD Dentist
Gallagher & Eden Family Dentistry
715 Baltimore Blvd.
Westminster, MD 21157
(410) 848-3866
Westminster, MD Dentist Call For Financing Options
Follow Us Online:
  

 


Find Us

715 Baltimore Blvd
Westminster, MD 21157

Map & Directions

Archive:

Tags

Google Plus Icon Our Blog Icon 

Celtic Canter 5k!

Celtic Cancer Run 2016

Click the Image Above for More Information

Facebook iconCeltic Canter Facebook

Posts for: January, 2019

By Dr. Patrick Gallagher, D.D.S.
January 19, 2019
Category: Oral Health
Tags: topical fluoride  
TopicalFluorideisaSafeWaytoProtectYourChildsTeethfromDecay

We've known for decades that fluoride strengthens tooth enamel and lowers the risk for decay. And while adding it to toothpaste and drinking water are the more common ways for getting it into the body, an increasingly popular way—especially for children—is to apply fluoride directly to the teeth.

But is topical fluoride really worth the effort and expense? And, are there any side effects to treating teeth this way?

As to the first question, researchers have performed numerous studies measuring fluoride's effectiveness for preventing tooth decay. The Cochrane Oral Health Research Group recently reviewed studies on topical fluoride applications involving nearly 10,000 children and adolescents between the ages of 2 and 15. The combined average for all the studies showed a 28% reduction in decayed teeth for patients who received topical fluoride compared to those who didn't.

This was especially true for children at high risk for decay: directly applying fluoride gels, foams or varnishes to teeth reduces that risk substantially. But there are also side effects to this application. Fluoride in general has only one known safety concern, a condition known as fluorosis. Too much fluoride over time can cause heavy discoloration of the teeth. This does not affect the health of the teeth, but it can look unattractive and require cosmetic treatment to reduce its effect.

There's little to no risk for fluorosis with the controlled treatments offered by dentists; the fluoride solution remains on the teeth no more than a few minutes. But there is a possible side effect during treatment due to the relatively high dose of fluoride used. If the patient accidentally swallows some of the solution, the concentration of fluoride can cause stomach upset, vomiting or headaches.

Dentists minimize the chances for this by usually using the more difficult to swallow varnish form of topical fluoride on younger patients, and using trays or other barrier devices to isolate the fluoride solution from the rest of the mouth. Under professional supervision, it's rare for an accidental ingestion to occur.

The risks for these side effects are quite low, and the benefits of topical fluoride for reducing the chances for decay can more than outweigh them. Fluoride applications are one of many ways we can protect your child's current and future dental health.

If you would like more information on decay prevention techniques like topical fluoride, 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 “Fluoride Gels Reduce Decay.”


By Dr. Patrick Gallagher, D.D.S.
January 09, 2019
Category: Dental Procedures
3WaysOrthodonticTechniquesCouldPreventaPoorBite

While orthodontists can effectively correct most poor bites (malocclusions), some can be quite complex requiring much time and expense. But there's good news—we often don't have to wait on a malocclusion to fully develop if we catch it in time. Thanks to interceptive orthodontics, we may be able to intervene much earlier and eliminate or reduce the degree of difficulty with treatment.

Interceptive orthodontics is a group of techniques and devices used in early childhood to help deter a possible malocclusion. Here are 3 ways this approach could make a difference in your child's bite development.

Guiding jaw growth. On a normal-sized upper jaw, the permanent teeth usually have ample room to erupt. Not so with a smaller jaw: incoming teeth become crowded and may erupt out of alignment or too close to each other. Orthodontists often use a device called a palatal expander to aid an under-sized jaw in its development. The device fits along the roof of the mouth between the teeth and applies gradual outward pressure on them. This encourages the jaw to widen as it grows, thus providing more room for erupting teeth to come in properly and decrease the chances of obstructive sleep apnea in the future.

Reshaping and repositioning jaw bones. An overbite can occur when the jaws aren't properly aligned, often due to poor muscle and bone development. This is where devices like the Herbst appliance are useful. Its hinge mechanism encourages the lower jaw to grow further forward. The jaws can thus develop in a more normal way, minimizing the development of a malocclusion.

Maintaining space. Primary ("baby") teeth are important for dental development because they help guide future permanent teeth to erupt properly; they also keep nearby teeth from drifting into the intended space. But when a primary tooth is lost prematurely due to disease or trauma, the space can become vulnerable to this kind of "drift." With a simple mechanism called a space maintainer we can hold open the space created by a prematurely lost primary tooth until the permanent tooth is ready to erupt.

These and other techniques can help stop bad bites from developing in young children, minimizing or even eliminating the need for future orthodontic treatment. That means a healthier mouth for your child and less impact on your wallet.

If you would like more information on interceptive orthodontics, 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 “Interceptive Orthodontics: Timely Intervention can make Treatment Easier.”


By Dr. Patrick Gallagher, D.D.S.
January 02, 2019
Category: Cosmetic Dentistry
Tags: teeth whitening  

Teeth Whitening TreatmentIs it time to get a brighter smile before the New Year?

The holidays are usually a time for many people to turn to cosmetic dentistry to help them achieve the perfect smiles. After all, there are a lot of holiday parties and events coming up and you want your smile to look perfect for all those pictures, right? If so, our Westminster, MD, dentist Dr. Patrick Gallagher can help make your smile radiant thanks to professional teeth whitening.

Professional teeth whitening can be offered right here in our dental office or you may choose to whiten at home. The choice is up to you; however, if you want to get your smile visibly brighter before a special occasion or if you need to get results quickly then the best option will be in-office whitening. In less than one hour, our Westminster, MD, dentist could get your smile between 5-8 shades whiter.

Of course, if you choose to whiten at home we can also provide you with custom-made whitening trays that will offer you even results after just a couple weeks of continued use. While it will take longer to see results this is a great option for patients who are looking to spend a little less on cosmetic treatment.

When is in-office teeth whitening right for me?

There are several reasons people choose to come into our office so our dentist can whiten their smiles. First of all, our dental team has been trained to administer whitening treatment effectively and safely. This means that you’ll get cosmetic dentistry that you can trust in every time. Plus, you don’t have to do any of the work. Just kick back in the dentist’s chair and let us get your smile whiter.

Furthermore, if you are someone who deals with tooth sensitivity then you may be concerned that teeth whitening might increase your sensitivity during and even after your session. If you are someone with sensitive teeth, in-office whitening may be the best approach because we can tailor your whitening treatment to reduce your chances for sensitivity.

You’ll often get the results you want in just one session. This, of course, will depend on the severity of the stains you are dealing with. It’s also important to know that while teeth whitening will brighten natural teeth it will not whiten artificial structures such as crowns or fillings.

If you are looking to get a whiter smile in Westminster, MD, and you want to get results quickly then there is no better option than professional teeth whitening. To find out if you’re an ideal candidate for treatment, call Gallagher & Eden Family Dentistry today to schedule an appointment.