Posts for: August, 2016

By Smart Family Dental Care
August 25, 2016
Category: Oral Health

There are several possible causes for bumps, lumps and growths on the gums. This includes canker sores, an abscess or infection. In oral healthrarer cases, a sore or growth on the gums can be a sign of oral cancer. In order to rule out potentially serious oral health problems, Dr. Orson Baek, a dentist at Smart Family Dental Care in Norcross, GA recommends getting lumps or growths on the gums or tongue evaluated by a dentist as soon as possible to obtain an accurate and timely diagnosis.

Oral Health and Cancer Screenings in Norcross, GA

The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends regular oral exams (approximately every six months) to screen for tooth decay, gum disease, and oral cancer. Although oral cancer is generally rare, monitoring changes to the teeth and gums is a necessary step in preventing gum disease. Some of the most common sources of bumps or sores on the gums include:

  • Infection/abscess
  • Cysts
  • Canker sores
  • Pyogenic granuloma/granuloma gravidarum (product of hormonal fluctuations typical during pregnancy)
  • Thrush (candidiasis)

When is it Time to Call a Dentist?

Generally, symptoms like pain, rashes, lumps, or sores that do not resolve on their own after a few days (7-10 on average) should be examined by your Norcross dentist. Signs of infection, like pus, discharge, or an abscess should be treated by a dentist right away. While some oral health problems and symptoms are unavoidable, practicing good oral hygiene with daily flossing and regular dental visits, and eating a healthy diet and avoiding tobacco and excessive alcohol consumption are the best way to protect the teeth and gums from decay and periodontal disease.

Find a Dentist in Norcross, GA

Regular dental exams and screenings are necessary to help diagnose oral health problems like tooth decay, gum disease, and oral cancer in the early stages, when they are most treatable. Contact Smart Family Dental Care by calling (770) 446-5700 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Orson Baek today.


By Smart Family Dental Care
August 19, 2016
Category: Oral Health
Tags: tooth wear  
HowtoKeepToothWearingtoaMinimumasyouAge

One of the unfortunate aspects of aging is tooth wear. Depending on your diet, years of biting and chewing can cause enamel along the biting surfaces to erode. Your body also can't replace enamel — so when it comes to teeth it's not a question of if, but how much your teeth will wear during your lifetime.

To make matters worse, certain conditions cause tooth wear to accelerate. Teeth softened by acids or tooth decay, for example, erode faster than healthier teeth. So will grinding habits: often fueled by stress, these include chewing on hard items like nails, pencils or bobby pins.

You may also grind your teeth, usually while you sleep. Normal biting and chewing produces pressure of about 13 to 23 pounds per square inch: grinding your teeth at night can well exceed this, even up into the hundreds of pounds.

There are some things we can do to alleviate these issues. For clenching and grinding habits, one primary step is to address stress through counseling or biofeedback therapy. For nighttime teeth grinding we can create a bite guard to wear while you sleep that will prevent your teeth from generating abnormal forces.

Finally, it's important that you take care of your teeth through daily oral hygiene, regular office cleanings and checkups, and a nutritious diet for maintaining strong bones and teeth. Keeping your teeth free from diseases that could compromise your enamel as well as other aspects of your mouth will help them stay as strong as possible.

If you would like more information on slowing the rate of tooth wear as you age, 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 “How and Why Teeth Wear.”


By Smart Family Dental Care
August 04, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
MasterIllusionistBenefitsfromtheMagicofOrthodontics

Magician Michael Grandinetti mystifies and astonishes audiences with his sleight of hand and mastery of illusion. But when he initially steps onto the stage, it’s his smile that grabs the attention. “The first thing… that an audience notices is your smile; it’s what really connects you as a person to them,” Michael told an interviewer.

He attributes his audience-pleasing smile to several years of orthodontic treatment as a teenager to straighten misaligned teeth, plus a lifetime of good oral care. “I’m so thankful that I did it,” he said about wearing orthodontic braces. “It was so beneficial. And… looking at the path I’ve chosen, it was life-changing.”

Orthodontics — the dental subspecialty focused on treating malocclusions (literally “bad bites”) — can indeed make life-changing improvements. Properly positioned teeth are integral to the aesthetics of any smile, and a smile that’s pleasing to look at boosts confidence and self-esteem and makes a terrific first impression. Studies have even linked having an attractive smile with greater professional success.

There can also be functional benefits such as improved biting/chewing and speech, and reduced strain on jaw muscles and joints. Additionally, well-aligned teeth are easier to clean and less likely to trap food particles that can lead to decay.

The Science Behind the Magic

There are more options than ever for correcting bites, but all capitalize on the fact that teeth are suspended in individual jawbone sockets by elastic periodontal ligaments that enable them to move. Orthodontic appliances (commonly called braces or clear aligners) place light, controlled forces on teeth in a calculated fashion to move them into their new desired alignment.

The “gold standard” in orthodontic treatment remains the orthodontic band for posterior (back) teeth and the bonded bracket for front teeth. Thin, flexible wires threaded through the brackets create the light forces needed for repositioning. Traditionally the brackets have been made of metal, but for those concerned about the aesthetics, they can also be made out of a clear material. Lingual braces, which are bonded to the back of teeth instead of the front, are another less visible option. The most discrete appliance is the removable clear aligner, which consists of a progression of custom-made clear trays that reposition teeth incrementally.

How’s that for a disappearing act?!

If you would like more information about orthodontic treatment please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about the subject by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “The Magic of Orthodontics.”