Dental X-Rays Remain a Valuable Tool in Detecting Oral Health Problems.

A study published in Cancer, the peer-reviewed journal of the American Cancer Society, found that people diagnosed with meningioma, a generally non-cancerous tumor, are more likely to report that they’ve received certain types of dental X-rays in the past.

There are several important things to understand about this study:

  • This finding doesn’t mean that dental X-rays caused these tumors; much more research is needed.
  • The results rely on the individuals’ memories of having dental X-rays taken years earlier. The ability to recall information is often imperfect. Therefore, the results of studies that use this design can be unreliable because they are affected by what scientists call “recall bias.”
  • The study acknowledges that some of the subjects received dental X-rays decades ago when radiation exposure was greater. Radiation doses were higher in the past due to the use of old X-ray technology and slower speed film.

The American Dental Association’s long-standing position is that dentists should order dental X-rays for patients only when necessary for diagnosis and treatment. Since 1989, the ADA has published recommendations to help dentists ensure that radiation exposure is as low as reasonably achievable. As precautions against radiation, ADA encourages the use of abdominal shielding (e.g., protective aprons) and thyroid collars on all patients. In addition, the ADA recommends that dentists use E or F speed film, the two fastest film speeds available, or a digital X -ray.

Dental X-rays are a valuable part of detecting oral health problems at an early stage. Many oral diseases can’t be detected with a physical examination alone. Dental X-rays help provide information about a patient’s oral health such as early-stage cavities, gum diseases, infections and some types of tumors. How often dental X-rays should be taken depends on the patient’s oral health condition, age, risk for disease and any signs and symptoms of oral disease that the patient might be experiencing. If you have concerns the ADA encourages you to talk to your dentist, but eliminating X-rays altogether could be detrimental to your oral health.

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Sensitive Teeth Can Be Treated

Is the taste of ice cream or a sip of hot coffee sometimes a painful experience for you? Does brushing or flossing make you wince occasionally? If so, you may have sensitive teeth.

Possible causes include:

  • Tooth decay (cavities)
  • Fractured teeth
  • Worn fillings
  • Gum disease
  • Worn tooth enamel
  • Exposed tooth root

In healthy teeth, a layer of enamel protects the crowns of your teeth—the part above the gum line. Under the gum line a layer called cementum protects the tooth root. Underneath both the enamel and the cementum is dentin.

Dentin is less dense than enamel and cementum and contains microscopic tubules (small hollow tubes or canals). When dentin loses its protective covering of enamel or cementum these tubules allow heat, cold, acidic, or sticky foods to reach the nerves and cells inside the tooth. Dentin may also be exposed when gums recede. The result can be hypersensitivity.

Sensitive teeth can be treated. The type of treatment will depend on what is causing the sensitivity. Your dentist may suggest one of a variety of treatments:

  • Desensitizing toothpaste. This contains compounds that help block transmission of sensation from the tooth surface to the nerve, and usually requires several applications before the sensitivity is reduced.
  • Fluoride gel. An in-office technique which strengthens tooth enamel and reduces the transmission of sensations.
  • A crown, inlay or bonding. These may be used to correct a flaw or decay that results in sensitivity.
  • Surgical gum graft. If gum tissue has been lost from the root, this will protect the root and reduce sensitivity.
  • Root canal. If sensitivity is severe and persistent and cannot be treated by other means, your dentist may recommend this treatment to eliminate the problem.

Proper oral hygiene is the key to preventing sensitive-tooth pain. Ask your dentist if you have any questions about your daily oral hygiene routine or concerns about tooth sensitivity.


We Now Offer Mini Dental Implants

Dr. Wimmer is offering Mini Dental Implants (MDI’s) for his patients with minimal bone, who are not candidates for conventional dental implants. The MDI system is especially useful in our denture wearing patients. The placement of MDI’s for denture stabilization allows patients who wear dentures to virtually eat what ever they want without having the dentures shift or move and without wearing denture adhesive.

The MDI system consists of a small titanium implant that acts like your tooth root and a retaining device that is incorporated into your denture. The top of the implant is shaped like ball and securely attaches into the fixture in the denture.

Placements of the implants can usually be done during a 2 hour appointment in the office with often just local anesthesia. Using a precise minimally invasive surgical technique the MDI’s are placed into the jaw bone. Due to the minimally invasive nature of the procedure often times the dentures can be stabilized and placed into function on the same day as the procedure!

Please call the office and ask for details on how we can help you with mini dental implants.

Dr. Wimmer Completes Requirements for ICOI

Congratulations to Dr. Matthew Wimmer for completing the requirements for his fellowship in the International Congress of Oral Implantologists (ICOI).

The ICOI is one of the leading providers of dental implant education, and the worlds largest dental implant organization. The Congress is composed of general dentists, oral and maxillofacial surgeons, periodontists, prosthodontists, endodontists, orthodontists, laboratory technicians, auxiliaries, industry representatives, researchers, faculty members, pre and post doctoral graduate dental students as well as the general public.

For fellowship status Dr. Wimmer has shown to have met the high standards of implant care set forth by the ICOI. He has completed the education and clinical case requirements for fellowship and was inducted as a Fellow at the ICOI World Congress meeting held in Orlando, FL on September 21, 2012.


Did You Know We Offer Computer Guided Dental Implant Surgery?

Using a 3D CAT scan of your jaw we are able to plan exactly where your implant will be placed in your mouth using a special computer program. A custom surgical guide is then made from the information stored in the computer, which allows Dr. Wimmer to place your dental implants in your jaw bone exactly where he planned to place them in the computer program. This method allows us to avoid placing your dental implants close to important anatomical structures like nerves!