Category Archives: Tooth Decay

Do I Need a Filling? | Palm Harbor Dentist

Are you experiencing toothaches, sharp pains, or sensitivity? If so, it may be time to schedule an appointment for an examination. For something simple like a cavity, the repair option would be a filling. If left untreated, it can progress into more severe dental issues, so it is important to keep an eye on your smile and any changes that may be developing. But how do you know what to look for when it comes to something common like a cavity? If you notice any of the following signs, dental fillings will likely be a solution:

  • A dark spot or hole in your tooth
  • A chipped tooth
  • A rough tooth
  • If floss is tearing in a particular location between your teeth

If your dentist finds that a filling is necessary, there are a few options to choose from. Some of the choices include amalgam, composite and ionomers. Amalgam fillings are very durable, easy to use, and inexpensive when compared to other materials and usually used for molars. Composite fillings are made out of a mixture of glass or quartz and resin, producing a tooth-colored filling. Composite fillings are durable and provide good resistance against fracture in small to medium restorations but tend to stain and discolor over time. Ionomers, on the other hand, are made out of a mixture of acrylic acids and fine glass powders used to fill cavities on the root surfaces of teeth or in small fillings that do not require any chewing resistance.

Dental fillings are essential in maintain ideal oral health because they prevent tooth decay. Without dental fillings, individuals risk the chance of permanently losing their teeth.

If you’re interested in learning more about dental fillings, contact Dr. Larry Lieberman, DDS at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

Bonding: Fast and Easy Smiles | Palm Harbor Dentist

When considering a smile makeover, one treatment option to consider is dental bonding – a fast, easy way to correct a number of minor dental aesthetic issues. A tooth-colored synthetic resin is bonded to the tooth, allowing the dentist to adjust the shape, spacing, and color of teeth to correct chips, cracks and other smile issues. In some cases, bonding can even be used as an alternative to traditional fillings, or to protect a tooth’s root in cases where a gum recession has exposed portions of the tooth that would normally be protected.

Bonding is generally considered to be fast and painless – a typical procedure requires less than an hour per tooth, and often does not require anesthesia. The dentist will begin by matching the color of the resin to the shade of the tooth, then lightly etch the surface to help the resin adhere to the tooth, before applying the clay or putty like resin and molding it to match the surface of the tooth. In some procedures, the resin will be molded to fill cracks or chips where the original tooth is no longer available, but it can also be used to cosmetically extend teeth to correct gaps between teeth, or make teeth appear longer for a more aesthetically pleasing smile. Once the dentist has shaped the resin, it is hardened in place with a special light, leaving it permanently bonded to the tooth.

Unlike some other dental procedures like bridges, bonded teeth do not require much in the way of special care. While the bonding resin is not as strong as a natural tooth, it should be brushed and flossed like normal teeth, and often lasts for many years.

If you’re interested in learning more about dental bonding, contact Dr. Lieberman at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

Energize Without Energy Drinks | Palm Harbor Dentist

These days can be trying for everyone involved. Between social distancing and keeping our hands clean, we are looking everywhere to have some type of normalcy. For many of us, energy drinks are keeping us alert and ready to take on the constant updates on our world. The problem is, if you don’t watch your intake, those comforting energy drinks are going to begin to do more harm than good.

Fact is, even if most people know that drinking energy drinks regularly is bad for the body, it seems that the energy boost isn’t all that worth it, especially since it comes at the expense of your beautiful smile. The main root of the problem is a mix of extremely high sugar content and a citric acid pH that’s usually as low as 2.9 all in one drink.

Now, sugar, as we all know, is bad for the teeth. It’s basically the main cause of cavities and a whole bunch of other dental problems. But, it’s the combination of the sugar content and acidic levels that makes energy drinks such a danger to the teeth. Anything acidic, when consumed regularly and in high amounts, can cause damage to tooth enamel, which in time can lead to a myriad of dental problems, including tooth sensitivity, tooth discoloration and pain or discomfort in the teeth.

In addition to minimizing the consumption of sports and energy drinks, plenty of dental professionals recommend chewing sugar-free gum or rinsing their mouth with water after consuming such drinks to promote salivary flow and help the acidity levels of the mouth return to normal. If you choose to brush, wait an hour before you do to prevent spreading the acids.

If you’re interested in learning more about energy drinks, contact Dr. Larry Lieberman, DDS at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

When You Need a New Toothbrush | Palm Harbor Dentist

Good habits begin with a positive beginning. Your dental hygiene is no different. If you start with the right tools, creating a proper hygiene routine will fall right into place. But with so many shapes, sizes and styles of toothbrushes on the market, deciding which kind to buy can be confusing. Here are some tips to keep in mind while shopping for your next toothbrush:

Most dental professionals agree that a soft-bristled brush is best for removing plaque and debris from your teeth. Small-headed brushes are also preferable, since they can better reach all areas of the mouth, including hard-to-reach back teeth

When it comes to the type of handle (such as non-slip grip or flexible neck), shape of the head (tapered or rectangular) and style of bristles (such as rippled, flat or trimmed to a dome shape), pick whatever is most comfortable for you. The best toothbrush is one that fits your mouth and allows you to reach all teeth easily.

For many, a powered toothbrush is a good alternative. It is important that your teeth get scrubbed well and an electric toothbrush gives a vibrating scrubbing that many find ideal. Older folks will also find this is a great option to have to ensure a proper cleaning takes place. An electric toothbrush can do a better job of cleaning teeth, particularly for those who have difficulty brushing or who have limited manual dexterity.

When it comes to replacing your toothbrush, the rules are quite simple. Replace your toothbrush when it begins to show wear, or every three months, whichever comes first. It is also very important to change toothbrushes after you’ve had a cold, since the bristles can collect germs that can lead to reinfection.

If you’re interested in learning more about choosing a toothbrush, contact Dr. Larry Lieberman, DDS at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

Not All Candy Is the Same | Palm Harbor Dentist

As we approach the spookiest holiday of the year, it is important to celebrate with caution. After all, we all enjoy a handful of fun-sized candy but overdoing it can cause issues with our dental appointments. We know too many sweets can lead to cavities and tooth decay, but it is also important to celebrate with the other ghosts and goblins. Here are some basic guidelines for us to keep in mind this Halloween…

Sugar contributes to decay by providing food for bacteria that damages teeth, but simply eating candy isn’t going to cause decay. It’s the sugar remaining on the teeth long term that contributes to the decay. So, limit your time eating candy, and immediately rinse with water and/or brush as soon as possible.

Not all Halloween candy is created equal. Sour candies tend to have far more acid than sweeter candies and that acidity is more damaging to tooth enamel than plain sugar and should be avoided if possible. Candies that are sticky – such as caramels, gummies, and popcorn balls – are more likely to stick to teeth, and therefore more likely to resist brushing. Because they may get stuck on teeth, they are more likely to cause tooth decay.

While you are chowing down on sweets, make sure to balance it out with other healthier food sources. The saying holds true – too many sweets will spoil your dinner. While Halloween can be fun, and candy is typically OK, be sure to ensure that candy is enjoyed in moderation and try to avoid the overly acidic/sour and sticky/gummy candies.

If you’re interested in learning more about Halloween candy, contact Dr. Larry Lieberman, DDS at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

Your Family Needs an Expert | Palm Harbor Dentist

When you start a family, it is important that you ensure everyone is healthy and happy at all times. A close-knit family is ideal because not only do you rely on each other in times of need, but you learn from each other. Teamwork is the main objective when it comes to family and dental health should be no different.

If you decide to celebrate your dental health together, it is necessary to make sure everyone is brushing twice a day for at least two minutes, flossing and rinsing with a fluoride mouthwash. Eating together will keep your diets healthy and nutritious, keeping those cavity creeps at bay. And lastly, visiting the dentist together will also bring you closer as a family. But not all dentists are alike – you need a family dentist.

Your family dentist will focus of preventive care to ensure that your oral health is in the ideal condition. Along with regular checkups, your family dentist can prevent oral hygiene problems with fluoride treatments, teeth cleanings, and tooth decay prevention. They are here to answer any questions you may have about keeping your family’s dental health as healthy as it can be. But more than that, a family dentist can provide a variety of dental procedures, including:

  • Tooth-colored dental fillings
  • Root canals
  • Tooth extraction
  • Wisdom teeth extraction
  • Dental crowns
  • Teeth whitening
  • Dental bridges

Avoid trusting just any dentist with your family’s dental problems. With Dr. Lieberman’s years of expertise, your family’s oral health will be improved and enhances like never before.

If you’re interested in learning more about family dentistry, contact Dr. Larry Lieberman, DDS at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

Tooth Pain: Time for a Dentist Visit? | Palm Harbor Dentist

Many patients tend to schedule dental visits only when they have an immediate need, such as tooth pain. Unfortunately, pain is typically the body’s response to a problem, and by the time the patient feels pain, a problem that may have been easy to treat could have advanced and become much more difficult. There are many different types of dental pain, for example:

Sensitivity to hot and cold food and drink may not be a serious problem, especially if it only lasts a few moments after contact. However, it could be caused by decay, a loose filling, or an exposed tooth root due to receding gums.

A dull ache or feeling of pressure above your upper teeth may not be tooth related at all – sometimes it can be sinus congestion from a cold or flu. Dull aches could also be tooth-related, and can also be caused by grinding or clenching, which can cause significant problems to your teeth over time.

Constant pain along the gum line can be caused by periodontal disease and can be accompanied by swelling and bleeding gums. Periodontal disease should be treated quickly, as it often involves both teeth and gums, and the infection can spread causing significant health problems.

If you’re experiencing tooth pain, be sure to make an appointment to have your dentist check on the underlying cause as soon as possible. Finding and treating the cause early can save both pain and money, as most of the underlying causes of pain tend to become more expensive to fix, the longer they’re left untreated.

If you’re interested in learning more about dental pain, contact Dr. Larry Lieberman, DDS at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

Sometimes Your Dentist Needs to Clean ‘Em | Palm Harbor Dentist

We all know proper oral hygiene is important not only for your smile, but for your overall health as well. So, twice a day we grab our toothbrush and get to brushing. But regular dental visits are also essential for the maintenance of healthy teeth and gums. Regular dental exams and professional cleanings can prevent these and many other health problems. Here are the top reasons why you need a dental cleaning:

Gum disease prevention. Gum disease is infection of tissues surrounding your teeth, and one of the major causes of bone loss if left untreated.

Oral health maintenance. Regular dental visits will help your dentist and hygienist follow your oral health and look closely for any signs of problems with your teeth and gums.

Oral cancer detection. Early diagnosis of oral cancer is very important in improving of the prognosis of cancer. When you have dental cleanings, you are also screened for oral cancer.

Confidence booster. When you have a beautiful smile, you feel more confident, your social life improves, and it opens up the door for many possibilities.

A smile brightener. Drinking coffee, tea and wine or using tobacco can stain your teeth. A dental cleaning can remove built-up stains and leave you with freshly polished teeth. The result? A whiter, brighter smile.

Fresh breath. Even if you brush and floss regularly, getting a cleaning is a great way to keep your mouth healthy and odor-free.

Good overall health. Experts know that there is a correlation between poor oral health and chronic inflammatory diseases such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and other problems such as: stroke, premature and low birth weight.

If you’re interested in learning more about dental cleanings, contact Dr. Larry Lieberman, DDS at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

Cavity Prevention 101: Palm Harbor Dentist

We all want a good report card when we go to visit the dentist. Unfortunately, we aren’t always the most responsible when it comes to a consistent dental regimen. When it gets by us, there is a high chance we will develop a cavity. A cavity occurs when plaque produces enough acid to eat through tooth enamel. The effects are usually reversible through extensive dental treatments, but there’s an easier way to deal with cavities – follow these three simple tips:

Watch your diet. People who love sugary treats are more likely to suffer from dental issues those that don’t prefer sugar will. Frequently snacking on sweets leaves sugar and starch on your teeth if not brushed afterwards, causing plaque and eventually, cavities. To minimize the risk, cut back on your sugar intake, or avoid it altogether. By making the decision to eliminate sugar from your diet, you’ll not only improve your oral health, but your health overall.

Don’t skip the dentist. Plenty of people suffer from cavities because they rarely pay a visit to their dentist. If it’s been a while since your last appointment, consider scheduling a visit ASAP. Your dentist will examine your entire mouth and give you a proper assessment of your oral health.

Make dental hygiene a priority. Make it a habit to brush your teeth every day and floss regularly. People tend to forget to floss, but it gets in spots a toothbrush can’t. If you don’t know if you’re brushing or flossing your teeth properly, ask your dentist. Gargling mouthwash will also go a long way in eliminating plaque buildup, so ask your dentist for any brands they recommend.

If you’re interested in learning more about cavity prevention, contact Dr. Larry Lieberman, DDS at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.

What Type of Toothbrush Should I Choose? | Palm Harbor Dentist

We are all aware of the need to keep up our dental hygiene each day in order to keep our smiles clean and healthy. But have you ever really noticed how many different types of toothbrushes there are? Not only the manual and electric versions, but within each variation? With so many shapes, sizes and styles of toothbrushes on the market, how are we ever supposed to know which kind to buy? With an entire section dedicated to just dental care, deciding which is the best can be confusing. Here’s what you should look for:

Most dental professionals agree that a soft-bristled brush is best for removing plaque and debris from your teeth. Small-headed brushes are also preferable, since they can better reach all areas of the mouth, including hard-to-reach back teeth.

When it comes to the type of handle, shape of the head, and style of bristles, pick whatever is most comfortable for you. When it comes to aesthetics, the best toothbrush is one that fits your mouth and allows you to reach all teeth easily. For many, a powered toothbrush is a good alternative. It can do a better job of cleaning teeth, especially those with difficulties brushing or who have limited manual dexterity

When it comes to replacing your toothbrush, there is a general rule of thumb – you should replace your toothbrush when it begins to show wear, or every three months, whichever comes first. It is also very important to change toothbrushes after you’ve had a cold because the bristles can collect the germs from your cold, which can lead to reinfection.

If you’re interested in learning more about toothbrushes, contact Dr. Larry Lieberman, DDS at 727-785-8017 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.dentist-lieberman.com for additional information.

Dr. Larry Lieberman proudly accepts patients from Palm Harbor and all surrounding areas.