Tag Archives: dental issues

Turkey Day Dental Tips | Palm Harbor Dentist

As we prepare for arguably the yummiest holiday of the year, it is important to realize that if we don’t look after our smiles, we could run into some issues come the new year. It is a holiday and for many of us, a time to indulge in all of the flavors this time of year has to offer. But there are some we should try to maintain a healthy balance, so as not to cause any dental issues in the future.

Foods and drinks high in sugar and acid are typically bad for your teeth. The sugar provides food for bacteria that contributes to both tooth decay and periodontal disease, and foods high in acid wear down tooth enamel, making them weaker, more likely to crack, and more vulnerable to tooth decay. Yes, sweet potatoes and pumpkin pie are Thanksgiving favorites, just make sure to keep your helpings to a minimum.

Don’t worry – lots of holiday favorites are actually really great for our smiles, so feel free to indulge in them! Foods like celery can help brush food particles off of teeth, while producing saliva to naturally cleanse the teeth. Foods high in calcium and protein (cheese and meats) help contribute to stronger teeth by protecting tooth enamel.

In addition to the sugar and acid contents of food, patients should pay attention to how long the food is in contact with their teeth. If you have a toothbrush handy, a quick brushing wouldn’t hurt. If you’re unable to brush your teeth, chew sugar free gum – sugar free gum encourages saliva to help cleanse your teeth, while helping to discourage bacteria growth in your mouth.

If you’re interested in learning more about Thanksgiving dental tips, 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.

When You Can’t Get Your Teeth Whitened | Palm Harbor Dentist

When You Can’t Get Your Teeth Whitened

Believe it or not, but everyone isn’t a good candidate for teeth whitening procedures. Tooth-colored fillings, crowns or bonding on your front teeth are going to remain the color that they are, so they will make them stand out against your freshly whitened smile. If this is the case for you, there are alternative options, such as veneers or dental bonding, that you may want to look into.

Dental veneers are thin pieces of porcelain or plastic that are bonded to the front of your teeth to improve their appearance or function. Veneers can aid in improving teeth that are severely discolored, chipped or misshaped. Stain-resistant, this treatment option is very popular for people looking to have a perfect smile. There are two types of veneers:

  • Porcelain. This option is fabricated in a dental lab to fit your teeth and typically requires two office visits. Porcelain veneers costs a bit more but will last from 15-20 years, depending on your dental hygiene routine.
  • Composite. This type of veneer is bonded to your tooth enamel in a single visit. Composite veneers cost much less, but only last around 5-7 years.

Dental bonding uses a tooth-colored composite resin to restore teeth that are chipped or broken, slightly gapped, discolored or misshapen. Bonding can also be used as a cosmetic alternative to silver fillings. After applying a mild etching solution that slightly roughens the surface of your tooth and allows the bonding material to adhere, your dentist will apply the composite resin and will begin to sculpt and shape the bonding material. Following the sculpting, your dentist will use a high-intensity light to harden the material and then finely polish the restoration.

If you’re interested in learning more about alternative whitening options, 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.

How Can I Whiten My Smile? | Palm Harbor Dentist

Everyone has heard of teeth whitening and it seems like everyone is doing it. It is a current, and long running dental trend as well as a frequently asked for cosmetic treatment. We all desire that dazzling bright white smile, but many aren’t sure which route to take to obtain it. There are a few different methods to whiter teeth from toothpaste to professional services.

There are many brands of toothpaste that claim to whiten teeth, and stores sell all varieties of tooth whitening products – trays, gels, strips, and rinses – over the counter. The most basic form of teeth whitening is available as toothpaste – toothpaste, whether it’s labeled as whitening or not – typically contains small abrasive components that gently polish the surface of your teeth, removing discoloration caused by surface staining.

Dentists, however, can typically offer two different whitening options. The first is take-home tray based, using chemicals stronger than over-the-counter trays, but working on the same basic principle. Often times dentist provided trays are custom-molded to the patient’s teeth, providing a smooth, comfortable fit suitable for wearing for multiple hours each day – often even overnight.  Beyond the trays, dentists can often perform whitening in the office, using light and heat activated bleaching chemicals, providing a significant whitening in as little as 60 minutes. Because the procedure is supervised by a dentist, much stronger chemicals can be used, and much more dramatic results can be seen almost immediately.

No matter which method of teeth whitening you choose, the results will likely not be permanent. Your teeth are exposed to foods and drinks that will stain them over time, but your dentist can advise you on the proper procedure for repeating the whitening process at regular intervals.

If you’re interested in learning more about whitening options, 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.

Sleep Your Way to a Healthy Smile | Palm Harbor Dentist

For some of us, going to the dentist is a rather frightening thing to think about doing. There are plenty of reasons one would be nervous about, sitting in the dental chair, and it is a very common fear for many patients. Thankfully, there is help that can get you through these checkups so you can have a healthy smile, regardless of your dental anxiety.

Sedation dentistry, also referred to as “sleep dentistry”, uses medication to help ease and relax patients before or during their dental procedure. There are many methods that can be used in sedation dentistry, and the method used depends on the patient’s needs. Here are the four most common methods of sedation dentistry:

Nitrous Oxide. Nitrous oxide, also known as laughing gas, is combined with oxygen and inhaled through a mask over your nose. This nitrous oxide helps calm the patient’s nerves. This method requires little recovery however, you will still need to have someone drive you home.

Oral sedation. The night before a procedure, the patient will take an oral medication to ensure that you’re calm and relaxed during the procedure. The recovery time for this method is a bit longer, so a ride home will be necessary.

IV sedation. This method is considered to be moderate to deep sedation. This type of dental sedation is administered into the bloodstream, which results in immediate relaxation.

General anesthesia. The strongest method of sedation is general anesthesia. During this type of sedation, the patient cannot be easily awakened until the effects fully wear off. Because it will take a while, making arrangements for a ride home will be wise.

If you’re interested in learning more about sedation dentistry, 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.

Am I Developing Gingivitis? | Palm Harbor Dentist

Gingivitis, or gum disease, is one of those ailments one dreads hearing they have. It usually develops when oral care falls by the wayside, so it can easily be prevented with proper dental routines. Gingivitis is an inflammation of the gums, usually caused by a bacterial infection. If left untreated, it can become a more serious infection known as periodontitis and can cause tooth loss.

Your gums actually attach to the teeth at a lower point than the gum edges. Food can get trapped in this space and cause a gum infection or gingivitis. Plaque is a thin film of bacteria on the surface of your teeth. When you don’t brush, it hardens and becomes tartar. Left unchecked, gingivitis can cause the gums to separate from the teeth. This can cause injury to the soft tissue and bone supporting the teeth, causing them to fall out.

The problem is many people aren’t aware that they have gingivitis. It’s possible to have gum disease without any symptoms, and without regular dental checkups, it can go completely undetected. However, the following can be symptoms of gingivitis:

  • red, tender, or swollen gums
  • bleeding when brushing or flossing
  • gums that have pulled away from the teeth
  • loose teeth
  • a change in how your teeth fit together when you bite (malocclusion)
  • pus between teeth and gums
  • pain when chewing
  • sensitive teeth
  • partial dentures that no longer fit
  • foul-smelling breath that does not go away after you brush your teeth

Remember, practicing good oral hygiene is essential to your oral health. Preventative care starts at home, not in your dentist’s chair every six months.

If you’re interested in learning more about gingivitis, 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.

Why You Should Consider Dental Implants | Palm Harbor Dentist

When we have a flawed smile, we visit our dentist for help. But depending on your circumstances, your treatment options will be tailored to fit your needs. If dental implants are an option, don’t shy away from the idea. Today’s technology has made incredible advances, and these replacements are better than ever.

Dental implants are artificial tooth replacements that resemble a tooth of a group of teeth. Most commonly used for individuals who have cracked or even missing teeth, dental implants provide a multitude of advantages to any individual looking to create a beautiful smile! Here are some of the advantages of considering dental implants:

Versatility. Though dental implants have their own single purpose in replacing missing or cracked teeth, they may also serve as an important part in other restorative procedures. A tooth implant can support a dental crown, as well as dental bridges.

Naturalness. Most individuals look to dental implants because they are the closest to natural that fake teeth can get. These days, your dentist will design these implants to look and feel the most natural that they can be, even taking the time to get the color right so that they blend in with your natural teeth. No one will know the difference.

Confidence. People who suffer from missing teeth are oftentimes uncomfortable with their appearances and tend to refrain from smiling at all. This can not only affect your days but can begin to take a toll on your demeanor. Because dental implants are so natural looking, one’s confidence should be restored, especially when flashing a smile.

If you’re interested in learning more about dental implants, 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.

Having Gum Disease Is Worse than You Think | Palm Harbor Dentist

We all want to be as healthy as we can possibly be, but there are times when things fall through the cracks. Gum disease is a dental condition that develops mainly from poor dental hygiene. And while most adults will have some form of gum disease in our lifetimes, it can be more detrimental to your health than you think. And not just your oral health – it turns out oral issues can be linked to other life-threatening diseases:

Heart disease. Individuals with gum disease are twice as likely to suffer from coronary artery disease. Harmful bacteria from your mouth enter your blood stream and attaches to fatty plaques in your heart’s blood vessels. Ultimately leading to inflammation in which makes you more prone to clots that may trigger heart attacks.

Memory loss. Researchers have found that there may be a close link to poor oral health with an increased risk of dementia. Oral bacteria may spread to the brain through cranial nerves that connect to the jaw and may contribute to a type of plaque that has been linked to Alzheimer’s.

Diabetes. Individuals with diabetes are more like to have periodontal disease than those without diabetes. Gum disease makes it harder to control you blood sugar, resulting in a high chance for diabetic issues.

Breathing issues. Individuals with poor hygiene are hurting their respiratory systems. Gum disease may increase your risk of respiratory infections such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

Fertility. Women with gum disease take an average two months longer to conceive a child that those who don’t have gum disease.

If you’re interested in learning more about gum disease, 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.

Jaw Pain and TMJ Disorder | Palm Harbor Dentist

Do you have difficulty eating because you have begun to experience jaw pain? It is important that you do not ignore it. A “bad bite” occurs when your teeth are misaligned, which causes the jaw muscles to apply extra pressure in order to compensate for the poor alignment of your teeth. This increased stress on the surface of the teeth leads to cracks and chips, and jaw pains.

When the muscle strain extends to the temporomandibular joint, located where the upper and lower jaws meet, individuals will suffer from temporomandibular disorder or TMJ.

Because it is difficult to tell what is  going on when we start to get a random pain, a dental professional will highly encourage their patients to schedule an appointment as soon as they notice they’re experiencing any of the following symptoms, as they are common indicators of TMJ:

Toothaches. Pain in multiple teeth or the jaw joint

Limited jaw movement. Difficulty when eating or speaking

Damaged dental work. Cracked, chipped or broken dental restorations

Headache. Especially when opening and closing your jaw

Ear pain. In front of or below the ear, with no other signs of ear infection

Noises “in your head”. Grinding, crunching or popping sounds

If you are experience any of the listed symptoms, it is essential to consult a dental professional about treatment options to diminish your tooth, jaw, and headaches caused by TMJ. Postponing treatment will only lead to further issues that will affect other areas. For a reliable professional near you, call Dr. Lieberman today.

If you’re interested in learning more about jaw 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.

Which Dentures Are Right for Me? | Palm Harbor Dentist

There are three types of dentures – the conventional full denture, the partial denture and the immediate full denture. When you are at your dental appointment, your dentist will be the one to recommend which of the three fits your particular case best, or if you’ll benefit better from a different type of dental treatment. Here’s a quick rundown:

Conventional full dentures. The conventional full denture is placed in the mouth only after the remaining teeth have been removed and tissues have been given enough time to heal. The healing process typically takes several months, during which time you will be without teeth. Special care instructions are given to prevent complications resulting from the lack of teeth. Expect to change one’s diet until the gums and its tissues have fully healed.

Immediate full dentures. This type of denture is inserted immediately after all the remaining teeth have been removed. Thus, it is a viable alternative for those who don’t want to go through the hassle of living without their teeth for months. The drawback, though, is that multiple dental visits are necessary as the dentures will have to be relined because the bone supporting the teeth changes its shape as it heals, which if not corrected will cause the denture to become loose.

Partial dentures. Partial dentures are placed on top of a metal framework that’s attached to the remaining natural teeth. In many cases, crowns are placed on top of some of the natural teeth to serve as anchors for the dentures and to ensure a better, more stable fit. Partial dentures are often advised to those who dislike the permanent nature of dental bridges.

If you’re interested in learning more about dentures, 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.