Westminster, MD Dentist
Gallagher & Eden Family Dentistry
715 Baltimore Blvd.
Westminster, MD 21157
(410) 848-3866
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Posts for category: Dental Procedures

By Gallagher and Eden Dental
June 09, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: dental implants  

While looking into replacement options for your missing tooth or teeth, you may have run across dental implants. These implants, which use a biocompatible titanium post called a fixture to replace a tooth’s root and the tooth itself, can completely overhaul your smile. But are dental implants right for you? Find out the answers to some commonly asked questions about dental implants with help from your Dental ImplantsWestminster, MD dentist.

What can dental implants do for me? 
Dental implants are a versatile procedure which can replace one, many or all of your teeth. Single tooth replacement uses one implant to replace one tooth. Multiple tooth replacement allows your dentist to use several implants to hold a row of prosthetic teeth in place. Your dentist can also strategically place implants throughout the arch to hold an implant-supported denture in place to replace all of the teeth on an arch.

How long do dental implants last? 
The implant’s fixture is implanted into the jawbone beneath your missing tooth. Over time, the fixture integrates with the bone, becoming a permanent part of your smile. While the prosthetic tooth itself may require maintenance over time, your implant will last a lifetime with the proper care.

Am I a good candidate for dental implants? 
If you are missing one or more teeth, you could benefit from dental implants. However, untreated missing teeth no longer stimulate the bone underneath them. This lack of stimulation causes the bone to degrade. Good candidates for dental implants have healthy enough bone for implantation and integration and can undergo general anesthesia and the recovery time required by the procedure.

What is the procedure like? 
The procedure for dental implants usually takes place in two parts. The first part involves an initial consultation with your Westminster dentist to determine if implants are right for you. Surgery involves implanting the implant’s fixture into the jawbone. During recovery, the fixture begins to integrate into the bone. After successful integration, the second part of the procedure begins. At this point, your dentist works with a dental laboratory to create the prosthetic teeth. Then, your dentist affixes the replacement teeth to your implant, completing the procedure.

Caring for Your Implants
Dental implants require a strong at-home oral care routine in order to remain healthy. Brush at least twice daily and floss at least once. See your dentist at least twice a year to maintain both your natural teeth and implants alike.

For more information on dental implants, please contact Dr. Patrick Gallagher III at Gallagher and Eden Dental in Westminster, MD. Call (410) 848-3866 to schedule your consultation for dental implants today!

By Patrick Gallagher DDS Family & Cosmetic Dentistry
June 09, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: Flossing  

Learn more about why your should floss regularly from your East Lansing dentist.

Have you ever wondered if flossing is really worth the effort? Dr. Thomas G. Faiver, your East Lansing, MI dentist, explains why flossing is such an important part of your oral hygiene routine and shares a few flossing tips.Flossing

Why should I floss?

The benefits of flossing include:

  • Fresher breath: Flossing removes small bits of food that can become trapped between teeth. If the food particles aren't removed, they begin to decay, causing bad breath.
  • Healthier teeth: Although brushing your teeth is a very effective way to remove plaque from your teeth, your toothbrush bristles can't penetrate the areas between your teeth. Flossing gets rid of plaque in hard-to-reach areas and reduces your risk of developing cavities between your teeth.
  • Reduced risk of gum disease: Plaque turns into a hard deposit called tartar if it isn't removed. When plaque forms at your gum line, it can cause painful gum disease. Flossing helps prevent the formation of tartar.

How should I floss?

Follow these three flossing steps once each day:

  1. Wrap an 18" length of dental floss around your middle fingers on each hand. Use your thumb and index fingers to control the movement of the floss.
  2. Gently rub the floss up and down between each tooth.
  3. Curve the floss around the base of each tooth to remove plaque from your gums. Use very gentle pressure, not a sawing motion, when you floss around your gums.

What kind of floss is best?

Any type of floss is effective in removing plaque, although you may find some types more comfortable than others. If you have wide spaces between your teeth, it might be easier to clean your teeth with floss tape, while waxed, string-like floss may be a better choice if your teeth are close together.

Brushing and flossing, in addition to regular dental exams, are the key to good oral health. Call Dr. Faiver, your East Lansing, MI, dentist, at (517) 351-7222 to schedule your next dental appointment. Keep your teeth strong and healthy with flossing!

AmericasDentistsGotTalent-forFixingDamagedorMissingTeeth

A recent episode of “America’s Got Talent” featured an engaging 93-year-old strongman called The Mighty Atom Jr. The mature muscleman’s stunt: moving a full-sized car (laden with his octogenarian “kid brother,” his brother’s wife, plus Atom’s “lady friend”) using just his teeth. Grinning for host Howie Mandel, Atom proudly told the TV audience that his teeth were all his own; then he grasped a leather strap in his mouth, and successfully pulled the car from a standstill.

We’re pleased to see that the Atom has kept his natural teeth in good shape: He must have found time for brushing and flossing in between stunts. Needless to say, his “talent” isn’t one we’d recommend trying at home. But aside from pulling vehicles, teeth can also be chipped or fractured by more mundane (yet still risky) activities — playing sports, nibbling on pencils, or biting too hard on ice. What can you do if that happens to your teeth?

Fortunately, we have a number of ways to repair cracked or chipped teeth. One of the easiest and fastest is cosmetic bonding with tooth-colored resins. Bonding can be used to fill in small chips, cracks and discolorations in the teeth. The bonding material is a high-tech mixture of plastic and glass components that’s extremely lifelike, and can last for several years. Plus, it’s a procedure that can be done right in the office, with minimal preparation or discomfort. However, it may not be suitable for larger chips, and it isn’t the longest-lasting type of restoration.

When more of the tooth structure is missing, a crown (or cap) might be needed to restore the tooth’s appearance and function. This involves creating a replacement for the entire visible part of the tooth in a dental lab — or in some cases, right in the office. It typically involves making a model of the damaged tooth and its neighbors, then fabricating a replica, which will fit perfectly into the bite. Finally, the replacement crown is permanently cemented to the damaged tooth. A crown replacement can last for many years if the tooth’s roots are in good shape. But what if the roots have been dislodged?

In some cases it’s possible to re-implant a tooth that has been knocked out — especially if it has been carefully preserved, and receives immediate professional attention. But if a tooth can’t be saved (due to a deeply fractured root, for example) a dental implant offers today’s best option for tooth replacement. This procedure has a success rate of over 95 percent, and gives you a natural looking replacement tooth that can last for the rest of your life.

So what have we learned? If you take care of your teeth, like strongman Atom, they can last a long time — but if you need to move your car, go get the keys.

If you would like more information about tooth restoration, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can learn more by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Crowns & Bridgework.”

By Dr. Patrick Gallagher, D.D.S.
April 13, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: braces   orthodontics  
TheresaGoodReasonforAdultstoConsiderOrthodontics-BetterOralHealth

You’ve had crooked teeth since you could remember. Perhaps you and your parents talked about braces when you were a teenager, but it never happened. Now you’re well into your adult years and you’re comfortable with how you look — so why go through the expense and time now to have them straightened?

There’s a good reason to consider orthodontics at any age — improved health. While we mainly associate teeth straightness with an improved smile, the more serious impact of misaligned teeth is on function — how we bite, chew and speak. As with many other areas of life, good form usually makes for good function. When we have crooked teeth, we may not be able to chew our food properly or speak as well as we could if our teeth were aligned properly.

Misaligned bites (malocclusions) can also have an impact on individual tooth health. Because they don’t interact efficiently with their opposing counterparts during chewing or biting, teeth can become loose or migrate further out of alignment.

While improvement in oral health is the primary reason for considering treatment for a malocclusion, don’t discount the benefit of orthodontics to your appearance. Your smile impacts many aspects of your life, including career and social relationships. A straighter, more attractive smile could also boost your self-confidence: even if you think you’ve grown accustomed to your smile, straightening your teeth could vastly change how you view yourself and how you believe others view you.

And if you’re dreading the look and feel of metal braces, orthodontic treatments have made giant strides in the last few decades. Clear aligners, for example, are much less noticeable than traditional fixed braces (and can be removed for special occasions), but still effective for moving teeth. There’s never been a better time to consider straightening your teeth — and change the course of your health and your life.

If you would like more information on orthodontics for adults, 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 “Why Straighten Teeth.”

By Dr. Patrick Gallagher, D.D.S.
April 11, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures

Dental implants are a great way to restore your full smile after you've lost a tooth. Patrick R Gallagher III, DDS, your Westminster dentist, denal implantsshares some of the benefits of dental implants.

Dental implants feel more like natural teeth

Bridges and dentures are very effective in replacing lost teeth, but when you have one of these prosthetic devices, you never quite forget you're wearing them. Because dental implants bond with the bone in your jawbone, your new tooth feels very much like the tooth you lost. In fact, after a while, you may even forget which tooth you lost.

Dental implants improve your confidence

You might feel like there's nothing to smile about after you lose a tooth, particularly if that gap in your mouth makes you feel self-conscious. Dental implants restore your smile and make you proud to smile and laugh again. If you don't have a good fit with dentures, they can slip, affecting your speech. Since implants are extremely stable, you're speech won't change and no one will know that you've lost a tooth.

Implants are good for your wallet

The initial cost of dental implants may seem high, but when you balance that one-time cost versus the cost of replacing bridges and dentures several times throughout your lifetime, you might just find that implants are the least expensive option.

Implants keep your jaw healthy

Tooth loss comes with consequences. Because your jaw is no longer stimulated by the roots of your teeth, it starts to recede, shorten and weaken. Eventually, jawbone changes can make it harder to chew and may lead to facial sagging. When you opt for a dental implant, your jaw continues to receive stimulation from your implant, and those changes never occur.

Dental implants are versatile

With implants, you can replace one tooth or all of them. Implant-supported dentures usually only require two implants for an entire row of dentures. These removable dentures are more comfortable than traditional dentures and also more stable.

Interested in learning how dental implants can help restore your smile? Call your Westminster dentist, Patrick R Gallagher III, DDS, at (410) 848-3866. Transform your smile with dental implants!