Tag Archives: dental tips

When Eating Ice Cream Begins to Hurt Your Teeth | Palm Harbor Dentist

If you’ve ever experienced a sharp and annoying pain in your teeth whenever you indulge in the wonderful frozen treats this summery weather can provide? No one wants to hear that they can’t have ice cream or iced tea because their teeth are too sensitive. So, what causes this cruel summertime malady?

Loss of tooth enamel, which leaves the dentin exposed, is the main reason why tooth sensitivity occurs. This may happen if you’ve been using a hard-bristled toothbrush instead of a soft one, as it may wear away as the abrasion can wear away the tooth enamel. However, it can also be the result of frequent consumption of acidic foods or gum recession.

It is important to take note, however, that the sharp pain when exposed to hot and cold food and beverages is not always caused by tooth sensitivity. Sometimes, it may be because of the following:

  • A cracked, chipped or fractured tooth
  • Dental caries
  • Constant grinding or clenching of the teeth, or a condition known as bruxism
  • A broken restoration that’s been leaking
  • A side effect of certain teeth whitening procedures, namely tooth bleaching

In order to find out if your teeth are indeed sensitive, talk to your dentist. Be sure to describe your symptoms in detail, like when the pain first started or anything you’ve done for the pain. Using your descriptions, the dentist will try to find out the possible cause of your sensitivity, and once finished, the dentist will then treat the underlying cause. The treatment will usually vary, depending on the case.

If you’re interested in learning more about tooth sensitivity, 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.

Is There a Link Between Alzheimer’s and Gum Disease? | Palm Harbor Dentist

According to US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 68 percent of senior Americans (65+ years) have moderate or severe gum disease with 1 in 5 adults having lost all of their teeth. Alzheimer’s disease also serves as the prelude or leading cause of dementia and affects more than 6.2 million Americans in 2021. Why the stats? There may be a link between the two.

In 2013, Health Day News published an article pertaining research results that found a linkage between gum disease and Alzheimer’s. During this study, researchers analyzed brain samples of 10 individuals with Alzheimer’s and 10 individuals without a brain disease; the results were startling. Those with Alzheimer’s showed gum disease-related bacteria in the brain, while no bacteria were found in the brain samples from individuals without Alzheimer’s.

More recently, a 2016 study by University of Southampton and King’s College London set out to determine whether or not periodontitis or gum disease was linked to the severity of dementia. The subsequent cognitive decline in Alzheimer’s patients and seem to back up the original theories. Researchers concluded that because bacteria can enter the bloodstream from the mouth, the bacteria can travel its way through the blood and to the brain, causing potential hazards in the neurological region.

Growing evidence from a number of studies links the body’s inflammatory response to increased rates of cognitive decline, suggesting that it would be worth exploring whether the treatment of gum disease might also benefit the treatment of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Just one more reminder that it is important to keep up with our daily dental routines.

If you’re interested in learning more about the Alzheimer’s and gum disease connection, 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.

Breaking the Myth: Periodontal Disease Edition | Palm Harbor Dentist

gum disease myth

According to the American Academy of Periodontology, three out of four Americans suffer from some form of gum disease. Despite the major prevalence, only three percent of those individuals actually seek treatment for their gum disease. With more research indicating that gum disease may be linked to several other diseases, maintaining healthy teeth and gums have become more and more important. Here are some common things in which the AAP have deemed misconceptions about oral health that should help you distinguish signs of gum disease:

Bleeding gums are not important.

Red, swollen, and bleeding gums are an important sign of periodontal disease. If you notice bleeding while brushing or flossing on a regular basis, you should schedule a visit with your dental professional in order to be evaluated for periodontal disease right away.

You don’t need to floss every day.

Having a set oral health routine is incredibly important. This includes keeping up with brushing AND flossing. Doing one without the other is giving opportunities for harmful bacteria to wreak havoc on your dental health.

A tooth lost to gum disease is lost forever.

This is not true, but not exactly false either. While gum disease is a major cause of tooth loss, and you tooth is indeed lost forever, periodontists use procedures such as dental implants to replace teeth.

Poor oral hygiene is the only way to develop gum disease.

Good oral hygiene can definitely contribute to the prevention of gum disease, however there are other factors in which having good oral hygiene won’t matter. For example, using tobacco increases your chances of developing gum disease by a large amount.

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

New Year, New Smile | Palm Harbor Dentist

As we sit and take stock of what we would like in the upcoming year, it is important to think about how our health comes into play. Because without our health, we can’t work towards our other goals. One of the easiest ways to improve our health is basic dental care. Because it may not seem like it, but our mouth is the first line of defense for our overall health. There is a reason we are wearing masks – to protect our health. So, before we walk into a brand-new year, here are a few dental hygiene tips to help you brighten that smile and keep you on your dentist’s good side. You may not think you need it, but many of us can use the refresher:

Brushing. The rule of thumb is pretty well-known – brush your teeth twice a day, for at least two minutes. Start your day off right with fresh, clean breath and wrap up your day with a quick brush before bed to prevent cavities from forming while you snooze. Choose a soft-bristled toothbrush and brush in rounded strokes to keep your gums healthy as well.

Flossing. It’s one of the least favorite tasks on the list of dental hygiene tasks. The problem is, flossing not only removes stuff stuck deep between each tooth, but it also keeps your gums healthy by preventing bacteria from getting inside and causing infection.

Rinsing. Rinsing is not only a quick way freshen breath, but it also adds an additional layer of protection from plaque and cavities. We have been taught to rinse with mouthwash after brushing but doing it beforehand can loosen any particles you may have, making your brushing more effective.

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

End the Year Without Your Bad Habits | Palm Harbor Dentist

Let’s face it – this has been one wild ride of a year. There was always something new to make us overwhelmed. And with this, some bad habits may have presented themselves. It’s understandable. So, as we are preparing to enter a new (and hopefully less stressful) year, why not take a moment to think about these bad habits and make a change for the better? Here is a list of some bad dental habits that we hope you can try to curtail because they are really killing your smile:

Chewing ice. We’ve all been guilty of this. After you’ve finished a drink, you might have the habit of chewing the ice that is leftover. But it’s the cold and hardness of the cubes can actually chip or crack your teeth.

Oral tool kit. Just like the ice habit, using your teeth to crack open nuts, or tear through plastic can be incredibly detrimental. Just like chewing ice, using your teeth as a tool may cause damage to your teeth.

Drinking soda. This may seem harmless, but there is a number of reasons why soda is bad for our teeth. Chockful of sugar, even the sugar-free options are bad for our teeth. Sodas are acidic and incredibly harmful to teeth.

Nail biting. A nervous habit, we know and perhaps one of the most common bad habits at that, biting your nails itself is not only damaging to your nail beds, but also to your teeth.

Teeth grinding. Officially called bruxism, grinding your teeth can begin to wear them down. While this is difficult to control while you’re sleeping, a dentist may give you a night guard to help you get it under control.

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

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.

Easing the Pain of TMJ Symptoms | Palm Harbor Dentist

No one like to have a toothache. For some reason, it feels like pain in our mouths is worse than any other type of pain. But what if it is your jaw that’s in pain? It brings on a whole new set of pain. Not only is it a larger area than a single tooth, but it can cause issues when trying to eat, sleep or other day-to-day activities. Thankfully, it is a condition that is temporary and can be alleviated without surgery.

Individuals suffering from Temporomandibular Joint Disorder, or TMJ, experience many symptoms such as discomfort and pain in areas surrounding the face or jaw. For some it’s a tenderness in the jaw area while some find pain around the ear, others will have difficulty eating or may experience locking of the jaw joint, which makes it tough to open and close the mouth. There are a series of remedies recommended in order to alleviate tension found in those areas. You’ll find that the remedies are simple and can easily done anywhere. Some of these include:

Facial exercises such as stretching, relaxing, or massaging the muscles found around the jaw

Evading actions such as yawning, singing, or excessive chewing.

Learning new stress relieving techniques, including but not limited to meditation, breathing exercises, or personal stress relievers. There are loads of options online you can experience in order to find what best suits your needs.

Formulating an exercise plan in order to increase your pain tolerance.

Dr. Lieberman highly encourages patients suffering from TMJ to follow these few techniques in order to alleviate TMJ pain and symptoms. If symptoms worsen, you are encouraged to schedule an appointment immediately with our friendly staff.

If you’re interested in learning more about TMJ disorder, 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.

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.