Your Aging Mouth| Morris County Dental Associates | Succasunna, NJ

Your Aging Mouth

Your Aging Mouth| Morris County Dental Associates | Succasunna, NJ When we think about aging, what most often comes to mind are those stubborn gray hairs and the wrinkles around the eyes. For some of us, it is our aching joints that call our attention as we get older. Of course, we know that aging is not a localized event; the entire body changes as the birthdays pass. That includes the mouth.  As you head up the ladder of aging, know that your Succasunna dentist has you covered.

We understand the various ways that aging can affect oral health, and we monitor and treat conditions such as:

Dry Mouth

Dry mouth sometimes comes on so gradually that it can reach a problematic stage without us knowing it. The dental condition known as xerostomia creates an uncomfortable feeling in the mouth. It may also make it difficult to speak with ultimate clarity. Even more concerning, dry mouth increases the risk for dental conditions including gum disease and cavities. So, we want to assess the risk for dry mouth by knowing patients’ medical history. Health conditions such as diabetes and Parkinson’s Disease may lead to xerostomia, as can certain medications. If this condition does develop, it may be managed by drinking plenty of water throughout the day, and by chewing sugarless gum. Individuals with dry mouth should also limit alcohol consumption and should not smoke.

Gum Disease

It almost seems as though periodontal disease could be categorized as an age-related condition because so many of us struggle with this infection as we get older. It is important to stay ahead of inflammation and degradation of gum tissue with healthy brushing and flossing habits. Acidic foods and beverages also lend to the inflammatory process, both in the mouth and systemically, so should be limited as much as possible.  Smoking should also be avoided. Finally, routine dental checkups and cleanings are necessary to inhibit aggressive bacterial invasion in the gums.

Bone Loss

As women age, one of the problems they are encouraged to monitor closely is bone loss. Women are more likely to lose bone density as they age, and this can occur anywhere in the body. Bone loss in the jaw is detrimental to oral health because it is in the bone where teeth roots are settled, and where they gain stability. Vitamin D is essential for calcium uptake in the body, so women should speak with their healthcare provider about proper supplementation for their needs.

Schedule a Consultation

From gum disease to failing dental work to discoloration and bone loss, we provide friendly care to help patients mitigate the effects of the aging mouth. To schedule a visit with us, call 973-328-1225.

Why beating Cavities may be a Challenge

damaged teethBeating cavities. For many, this may feel like a challenge that will never be won. Cavities are typically a condition that is limited, for the most part, to our younger years. When you spend the recommended amount of time brushing and flossing your teeth, and your diet is low in sugar and acidity, you would expect that your oral health would be a reflection of your good habits. Most of the time, this would be a reasonable assumption. However, there are hidden triggers that could present an obstacle to your goal of being cavity free for the long haul.

Positioning

The position of your teeth affects a lot more than the appearance of your smile. If you have teeth that are overlapping, or even somewhat crowded,  you may find that it is difficult to avoid getting food stuck in tight spaces. If cavities are a prevalent problem, it may be necessary to consider straightening the alignment of your teeth with a discreet system like Invisalign or clear braces.

Moisture

The mouth needs to be a moist environment in order for teeth to stay healthy. We take for granted the ongoing production of saliva, and what it does for oral health. In fact, you probably don’t even think about this process. It’s a given, right? No. Many adults develop chronic dry mouth, a condition referred to by dentists as xerostomia. When the glands that produce saliva do not function properly, teeth are not remineralized as well as they should be. Also, saliva dilutes residue that can break down enamel, such as sugar and acid. As a result, people with dry mouth may find that they are in a perpetual fight against tooth decay. If you can relate, add sips of water to every hour, and chew sugarless gum. You may even want to talk with your doctor to see if certain medications may be at the heart of your problem.

The spacing and general moisture of the mouth are just two of the common conditions that may make it difficult to beat cavities for good. We are here to help you manage your oral health! Schedule a visit to Morris County Dental Associates, LLC at (973) 328-1225.

How Smoking Affects Your Oral Health

oral cancerSmoking…yes, it can be hard to quit. But it’s important to know that besides heart and lung problems, there are oral health concerns that can be directly linked to smoking. If you are a smoker, we strongly advise you to quit or at least cut back to prevent health and oral health concerns.

How does smoking affect your oral health?
First and most intimately, smoking directly and negatively impacts your breath. Additionally, the nicotine in cigarettes causes your teeth to become yellow and stained. In more serious cases, smoking can impact your gums by affecting the attachment of bone and soft tissue to your teeth. More specifically, it appears that smoking can interfere with the normal function of gum tissue cells. This interference makes smokers more susceptible to infections, such as periodontal disease and potential tooth loss. Finally, and perhaps most importantly, smoking can lead to various cancers of the mouth and throat. Pipe and cigar smokers are not immune to these concerns, especially oral and throat cancers, even if they don’t inhale.

Quitting is a journey. A path. You can do it, but “Ya Gotta Wanna.”
With proper guidance and determination, you can quit smoking. One trick that seems to work for many people is to remove the triggers that influence smoking, such as that morning cup of coffee or a drink at the bar. You can also consider using e-cigarettes, which have helped smokers gradually quit the habit. Most of all, when crafting a quit-smoking plan, make sure you have the support of family and friends.

Whether you smoke or not, practicing proper oral hygiene and visiting your dentist twice each year for regular checkups are essential to oral health. Why twice a year? Because that gives us the opportunity to diagnose any potential problems early and begin necessary treatments.

Call to schedule an appointment, today, especially if you have concerns about your oral health: 973-328-1225.

Your Bite And What It Means To Your Dental Health

dental care morris county njThe common name for how your teeth fit together is your “bite.” Occlusion is the more technical term. If your bite is “off” it can cause problems, because the alignment of your teeth is an important component of your dental health and may even affect your overall health. This alignment problem is called malocclusion – a very common cause of tooth pain, jaw pain and temperature sensitivity. Here are 3 things to consider as you decide whether malocclusion is causing or contributing to your tooth or jaw pain, sensitivity or discomfort:

  1. Does it hurt your jaw when you bite down? If so, there may be a relationship between your bite and your temporomandibular jaw joint (TMJ). The pain may be associated with a structural disorder, but frequently the pain originates in the muscles that move your jaw was they attempt to accommodate a malocclusion.
  2. Does clenching your teeth cause pain? If so, you may have a malocclusion. Clenching is also a good way to find out if a new crown or filling is too “high.” If your bite is on the mark, you should be able to bite hard and grind your teeth together in all directions without discomfort.
  3. Does it seem your teeth are wearing away? Severe tooth wear is a sign that your bite is not spot on. If all the enamel on the biting edges of your teeth is worn away, you will see a darker colored surface (the dentin) which wears down much faster than tooth enamel. This can be damaging when it involves your front teeth – especially your lower front teeth. Correcting your bite may prevent further wearing away.

It’s true that the most common dental problems are tooth decay and gum disease, but malocclusions can cause additional pain and damage.

If you think you may have a problem with your bite or are experiencing tooth or jaw pain call to schedule a consultation appointment. We will observe the relationship of your teeth, jaw and bite, and recommend any needed dental procedures: 973.328.1225.

Do You Know What’s In Your Toothpaste?

For hundreds of years, brushing our teeth has been a hygienic and social necessity…and today, toothpaste is very important to that process. There is a large selection of toothpastes to help you remove the sticky bacterial film and plaque that builds up on your teeth every 12 to 24 hours.

Here’s what is in this amazing product you use to clean your “pearly whites”:

  • toothpasteDetergents – Toothpaste foams because it contains a detergent which breaks down substances on your teeth allowing them to be dissolved and rinsed away with water. Detergents in toothpastes are mild and won’t irritate your sensitive oral tissues. Sodium lauryl sulfate is the most common detergent in toothpaste and is also found in other beauty products that foam, such as shampoo.
  • Abrasives – One of the main reasons to use toothpaste is to make the action of brushing more effective. In order to remove stains, you need a substance with a little graininess. Abrasives or mild polishing agents, clean while preserving your tooth enamel. The abrasives in toothpaste may include hydrated silica or calcium carbonate. Abrasives won’t clean your teeth without the scrubbing action of a toothbrush and brushing without an abrasive-containing toothpaste will not adequately clean and polish your tooth surfaces and will not remove stains.
  • Humectants and Binders – Humectants are a combination of ingredients that retain moisture in the toothpaste and binders keep all the ingredients from separating. If toothpaste didn’t have these components, it would dry out and require stirring before use.
  • Fluoride – Introduced into toothpaste formulas in 1914, fluoride is the most valuable component in toothpaste. It strengthens tooth enamel and makes your teeth more resistant to decay because it is actually incorporated into your tooth’s enamel structure.
  • Flavorings – Toothpaste would taste awful without the addition of flavoring agents. That’s why you’ll find various natural and artificial flavorings in your toothpaste.

The teeth-care Golden Rule: Brush and floss your teeth twice a day and don’t neglect your twice-yearly dental visits. If it’s been awhile since your last dental visit, call to schedule an appointment with Dr. Goldberg, today: 973-328-1225.

Getting To The Crux Of Bruxism

It seems everyone is stressed to some degree and the search for stress-relief is common. Medication can help…along with walking, yoga and regular exercise. But did you know that stress can show up as unconscious jaw clenching or teeth grinding? This is called bruxism and it affects approximately 40 million adults and children. Some of the symptoms of bruxism are headache, facial pain, tight or painful jaw muscles and broken fillings.bruxism

  • As teeth rub together, the outer layers of tooth enamel can wear away and the teeth become sensitive. Severe bruxism can damage your teeth and even break dental fillings.
  • You may have been told by your partner that you “grind” your teeth while sleeping. This is called nocturnal bruxism, and sometimes results in waking with a dull headache, facial or jaw pain. If the pain is chronic, you may find that your bruxism is causing temporomandibular joint disorder or TMJ.
  • It’s possible you are grinding your teeth during the day and you are not even aware of it.
  • It’s thought that bruxism may be a side effect of some medicines that treat depression, such as Prozac or Paxil, or it may be a symptom of diseases of the facial nerves and muscles.
  • Bruxism symptoms may be alleviated by limiting your intake of caffeine.
  • If you suffer from bruxism and think it may be stress-related, try to research strategies that will help you relax.

If you think you suffer from bruxism, don’t continue to suffer. There are treatment modalities that can help. At your consultation, Dr. Goldberg will discuss your sleep habits, your general health, any medications you are taking and look for the possible sources of your stress. He will also examine the alignment of your teeth and look for tenderness in your jaw and facial muscles. Call for a consultation today. We look forward to helping you: 973-328-1225.

Temporoalmandibular Joint Disorder De-Mystified

Clicking and cracking and popping. Aches and pains and discomforts.
They can be a normal part of life or they may signal a more serious problem.

You may have heard of TMJ – Temporoalmandibular Joint Disorder – you may even suffer from it or know someone who does. It’s a common condition suffered by over 10 million Americans, caused by the improper alignment of the jaw. It results in jaw pain and other discomforts.

The jaw is comprised of specialized joints which are responsible for ease of movement and strength. These joints are needed to eat, talk, yawn and open and close your mouth. Although TMJ is common, it can make simple jaw movements painful and annoying.
• For some, TMJ is temporary and its symptoms resolve on their own or with some DIY care.
• For others, TMJ can cause chronic pain and needs to be addressed professionally.

In addition to jaw stiffness and pain, you may be dizzy, have headaches, neck and shoulder pain, eye discomfort, ringing in your ears and other types of pain and numbness in your face and jaw. Sometimes TMJ manifests itself in the hands and the back. In the most extreme cases, people with TMJ can barely move their jaw.

But even in combination, these symptoms may not mean you have TMJ.
At Morris County Dental, Dr. Goldberg will consult with you, evaluate your symptoms and suggest the best treatment options for you.

Whether you have a lot of pain or just a bit of cracking, you can try these DIY treatments for your TMJ:
• Perform relaxation exercises to help eliminate jaw clenching
• Avoid hard-to-chew or crunchy foods
• Stretch your jaw, neck and shoulders often
• Apply heat or cold packs

When simple DIY measures don’t make a difference in your TMJ symptoms, Dr. Goldberg may suggest wearing a mouth guard at night to stop teeth grinding (bruxism) or he may prescribe anti-inflammatory painkillers or stronger, prescription medications, if needed.

To learn more, call to schedule a consultation appointment with Dr. Goldberg: 973-328-1225.

The “Inside Scoop” On Your Teeth

At Morris County Dental we care about your teeth – which are designed to last you a lifetime. However, your general health, decay, poor dental habits and good old Father Time can play havoc with your teeth. Let’s get to the basics…and learn what kind of teeth you have and what makes them so strong and amazing:

  • Each of your teeth is comprised of 2 parts:
    The visible crown and the root which is not visible.

You mouth contains 4 kinds of teeth:

dental health

  1. Incisors…the teeth in the front of your mouth. There are a total of eight and all have the same function – they are for biting into food. Incisors are usually the first teeth to erupt, at around 6 months of age.
  2. Canines…you share these with your dog. They are the pointed, sharp teeth next to your incisors. There are two on the top row and two on the bottom. They are used to tear pieces of food.
  3. Pre-molars (bicuspids)…as an adult, you have eight pre-molars, the large, flat teeth behind your canine teeth that tear, crush, and mash your food.
  4. Molars…your largest teeth which are found at the very back of your mouth. Including the wisdom teeth, most adults have 12 molars. They are also used for chewing and grinding your food.

Your teeth contain 4 kinds of tissue:

  1. Enamel is the visible substance that covers the crown. Harder than bone, enamel is made up of phosphorous and calcium and protects the tooth from decay.
  2.  Dentin lies underneath the enamel. It looks similar to bone but is not as hard as enamel.
  3. Cementum is the tissue covering the tooth root, helping anchor it to the bone. It is softer than enamel and dentin.
  4. Pulp is found at the center of your tooth and contains the blood vessels, nerves, and other soft tissues that deliver signals and nutrients to your teeth.

Let Dr. Goldberg help you maintain a healthy, shiny smile for life!
Call us for a dental check-up appointment, today: 973-328-1225.

Be Comfortable in Your Dental Appointments

Do you feel like you need to go to the dentist, but the thought of it makes your knees tremble because of the anxiety? Are you continually delaying your dental appointments because of this fear? If you answered “yes” perhaps it’s time to consider the best option — sedation dentistry.

Say goodbye to that annoying phobia.
With sedation dentistry, you can now get the dental treatment you need. When sedation is administered, the patient is able to relax throughout the procedure and remain free from stress. Sedation dentistry actually benefits both patient and dentist, as sedation allows the patient to stay awake and fully cooperate during the entire process.

Save yourself from all the pain.
If pain is one of the reasons why you just can’t get yourself to undergo a certain procedure, then sedation can greatly help you. Sedation has been proven to increase a patient’s pain threshold, making it easier for the dentist to perform the dental treatment and save you from all the pain.

Survive long procedures.
Lengthy dental procedures can be extremely tiring, but sedation can make such procedures easier to endure.

Experience the benefits of sedation dentistry today by giving us a call. You will never have to fear dental procedures again!

family dental care

Get Your Family Dental Care Here!

At Morris County Dental Associates, we offer several treatments and care options that we know can assist patients in maintaining healthy, strong, and more durable teeth. Some of these treatments and care options include routine visits and checkups, educating patients on proper oral health care and preventative methods. We also utilize digital x-rays for early cavity detection and other dental issues that might occur.

Our overall goals include:

  • Helping our patients achieve their perfect smile
  • Catering to every patient need
  • Treating every family member for a one-stop dental visit

Helping Achieve Better Smiles

We want to do more than cater to the dental care needs of our patients; we try to eliminate anxiety during every procedure. We also try to make your experience pleasant, creating a friendly and comfortable environment. Our aim is to have our patients feeling good about their teeth, and maybe help them boost their self-confidence.

  • We give our patients the best advice.
  • Our priority is our patients’ needs.
  • We give our patients quality service.
  • We create friendly environment for our patients.

Giving You Professionalism That You Can Appreciate

Dr. Ira Goldberg, along with his trusted group of practitioners, is trained in various types of dentistry. We provide professional service with satisfying results that will literally put a smile on your face. We not only want to restore your perfect smile, we also want to give you guidelines to help you to keep that smile.

  • We advise our patients on how to maintain healthier teeth.
  • Our practitioners oblige patients’ reasonable requests
  • We provide the best service for our patients.
  • We offer education and treatments to assist our patients with better dental health.
  • We want only satisfied patients.

 

Why Should You Come To Us For Your Dental Care?

Our practitioners take pride in their work and are well trained in advanced dentistry techniques.  We extend our dental care and services to the entire family. We cater to your specify needs. We understand that choosing dental services can be a big decision, and we try to facilitate our customers as best as possible to ease their concerns.

Let us help you maintain the health and beauty of your smile!