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Sedation dentistry has transformed the dental experience for many different types of dental patients. If you have been considering whether sedation treatment may be right for you, our O’Fallon dentists are here with some more information. Keep reading to get the scoop on this exciting development in dentistry.

The purpose of sedation treatment is to keep the patient calm and comfortable throughout the treatment process. People use sedation because:

· They suffer from dental anxiety that prevents them from even getting into the dentist’s chair in the first place

· They are prone to pain and sensitivity during treatment

· They are undergoing complex or multi-phased dental treatment. Sedation can actually enable our dental team to complete more dental treatments in a single appointment, because the patient does not become as fatigued and stressed in the dentist’s chair

One of the tried and true sedation treatments is laughing gas, or nitrous oxide. This type of sedation is inhaled by the patient during the appointment. As a result of nitrous inhalation, the patient starts to feel clam, spaced out, and even a little giggly. Nitrous oxide never renders the patient unconscious, and the effects wear off naturally post-treatment.

A recent and very useful development in relaxation treatment is oral conscious sedation. Oral conscious sedation requires the patient to take a small pill about an hour before they come in for treatment. This sedative helps the patient feel calm right away (so keep in mind that you will need someone to drive you to and from your appointment). Oral conscious sedation has amnesic effects, so you likely won’t remember any of the treatment process after it is complete. However, you will technically be conscious and able to respond to our dental team throughout your appointment.

Don’t let fear, anxiety, or dental sensitivity keep you from getting the high-quality restorative and preventive treatments that you need. Our O’Fallon sedation dentists are here to answer any questions you may have—give us a call to get started!

Teeth are designed to be very strong and resilient, but they are not indestructible. Over time your teeth may develop problematic cracks or chips—these may be large or so small that you cannot see them with the naked eye.

Today our O’Fallon dentists are talking about how dental enamel becomes cracked and chipped. We hope that this information will help you take steps to protect your smile from this kind of damage.

Teeth can, of course, become damaged when a patient suffers a dental trauma. Car accidents and sporting accidents are common causes of damage. Take the time now to figure out who you will call for treatment in a dental emergency!

Dental trauma is a pretty dramatic and obvious cause of dental damage, but there are a number of more banal issues that can lead to dental cracks and chips. Bruxism, for example, puts an enormous amount of pressure on your teeth, and can lead to broken enamel over time. Bruxism is a term that is used to describe chronic dental grinding and clenching. Bruxism can manifest during the day or at night. In order to safeguard your smile, your dentist may recommend that you wear a protective mouth guard when you sleep. Alternatively, orthodontic treatment can help to perfect your bite so that your top and bottom jaws come together comfortably.

Acid erosion will also leave your enamel susceptible to damage. Acidic substances like fruit juices, wine, and many whole fruits can weaken dental enamel and wear it down. In order to minimize the amount of damage that acid does to your smile, try to rinse your teeth with water after enjoying something acidic.

If you want to learn more about the causes of dental damage, our O’Fallon dentists are here to give you all of the information you need!

It’s that time of year: when our houses are flooded with yummy Halloween candy! Halloween-time is, by its very nature, indulgent, but there are still simple things that you can do to help safeguard your smile this fall. Here are some helpful tips from our O’Fallon dentists

1. Drink Up

This is a great time to increase the amount of water that you drink, and to be really mindful about staying hydrated. When you are properly hydrated, your body is able to produce saliva, which naturally helps to neutralize bacteria and re-mineralize your dental enamel.

2. Rinse Regularly

Keep sugary substances from sitting on your enamel by rinsing your mouth with water after eating or drinking. This simple step can help you maintain fresh breath throughout the day.

3. Enjoy Responsibly

Did you know that it actually makes a difference when, precisely, you eat candy? For example, if you indulge in a piece of candy after eating a meal, your mouth is already flooded with saliva. This means that your body is better able to neutralize the bacteria that feed on sugary substances. Likewise, it is better to eat candy in one, time-limited setting, rather than snacking throughout the day. The key is, we want to minimize the amount of time that your enamel or and oral tissues are exposed to sugars.

4. Beware of Certain Types of Candy

Sticky candies are notorious for getting stuck between your teeth. When enjoying something chewy and sticky, make sure to remove any pits that may have become lodged in your smile—use gentle floss rather than potentially abrasive toothpicks. Also, when enjoying hard candies or mints, make sure that you are not chewing these candies, as chewing hard substances can lead to dental damage.

As always, our O’Fallon dentists are here to answer all of your questions and give you any more information that you may need on maintaining your smile. Call our team to learn more!

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