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Thomas J. Thacker, DDS | Q & A in Tallahassee

Thomas J. Thacker, DDS

2600 Care Drive

Tallahassee, FL 32308

 

(850) 878-7916

Q & A

 

Why are my teeth sensitive?

Sensitive teeth often come from the fact that your gums have slightly receded. This recession of the gum line allows the underlying dentin to show through, giving water and food easier access to the sensitive nerve. To manage this, there are a number of toothpastes, gels, and even some dental procedures that can be applied. Speak to us at our Tallahassee dental office in more detail if you have very sensitive teeth.

What should I do to prevent gum disease and tooth decay?

Great tooth and gum care start at home. Brushing and flossing on a daily basis is the best way to take care of your teeth and gums regularly. By keeping to a daily routine you will greatly minimize the risk of gingivitis or tooth decay as you age.

What is gingivitis?


Gingivitis is a condition caused when bacteria surround the teeth and enter the gums. The gums can become irritated and inflamed and often bleed. In order to prevent the condition from worsening, regular hygiene visits are highly recommended. During your visit, our hygiene team will teach you proper flossing techniques and oral hygiene protocol for home care to prevent periodontal disease.

What is periodontal disease?

Periodontal disease is a quiet disease that begins with few or no symptoms. It is caused by bacteria that surround the teeth and enter the gums. The immediate condition is known as gingivitis. The gums become irritated and inflamed and often bleed. If not properly treated, the condition worsens. Noticeable symptoms then appear. They include the following:

  • Bad breath
  • Gum recession
  • Gum sensitivity to acidic foods
  • Abscesses
  • Tooth pain
  • Tooth loss


How do you treat periodontal disease?

Periodontal disease is a chronic condition that needs immediate attention. Through a series of periodontal cleanings, root planing and scaling, laser  therapy, and local antibiotics, this condition can be controlled. Periodontal surgery is only necessary for severe cases.

What is the difference between a white filling and a silver filling?

Silver fillings, known as amalgam, have been around for decades. Made from a metal alloy, this was the best restoration for fillings. The metal expands and contracts with the heat and cold placed in the mouth. This allowed for very few bacteria to enter a tooth once filled, keeping the tooth healthy and strong.

White fillings, also known as composites, are often made of plastic or glass polymers. These cosmetic fillings allow us to fill a cavity with a substance that will look and feel just like your existing tooth structure. This restoration is created with a resin material and fits tightly into a tooth to prevent decay. Rather than a gray or silver material in your mouth, the composite color will match the tooth color.

How can I improve my smile?

There are several ways in today’s dental world to enhance your smile. Specific procedures include the following:  

  • Teeth whitening
  • Bonding
  • Porcelain veneers
  • Porcelain crowns

 

We have the capability to improve your smile using all or some of these procedures. For an exact consultation, please contact our office in Tallahassee so that we may provide you with a customized treatment plan.


What is teeth whitening?

Teeth whitening is a cost-effective and safe procedure that creates a beautiful, healthy smile. Over the years, fluoride has been added to the whitening product. This reduces the risk of tooth and gum sensitivity. Teeth whitening must be monitored by your dentist and only done after a comprehensive exam and hygiene cleaning.

The effects of the whitening process can last for a number of years. Beverages such as coffee, tea, cola, and wine will reduce the lasting effect. Remember, if it could stain a white shirt, it will stain your smile!

What is bonding?


Bonding is a cost-effective procedure used to fill gaps in front teeth and to change a tooth’s color. The immediate results are amazing. Within a few hours, you will have a great smile! Bonding, like teeth whitening, may change color over time due to coffee, tea, cola, and wine.

What are porcelain veneers?

Porcelain veneers are thin pieces of porcelain that go directly on your natural teeth. This entire procedure can take as few as two visits. Veneers change the size, shape, and color of a patient’s teeth. This procedure is used to repair fractured teeth, teeth darkened by age or medication, or crooked smiles. Many times, patients ask for porcelain veneers simply to feel and look younger with a straighter, whiter smile!

What are crowns?

Crowns are a permanent cosmetic procedure that covers the entire tooth. They change the size, shape, and color of the tooth in as few as two visits. 

What is a dental implant?

A dental implant is a man-made replacement for a missing tooth or tooth root. Made from titanium, this screw-like object is inserted under the gum and directly into the upper or lower jawbone. There is usually minimal discomfort involved with this procedure. After a few months, the dental implant and the bone fuse together. This creates an anchor for the new tooth to be placed onto the dental implant. 

What are the benefits of Dental implants?

  • Dental implants look and function like your natural teeth.
  • Dental implants are a permanent solution for missing teeth.
  • Dental implants are maintained by routine hygiene visits at your dental office.
  • Dental implants decrease the possibility of bone loss, periodontal disease, tooth movement, and further tooth loss.
  • Dental implants replace the need for a removable full or partial denture.
  • Dental implants focus only on the tooth or teeth that are missing. A traditional bridge would involve the two or more adjacent teeth being involved to create a false tooth in between.

 

Who is a candidate for dental implants?

Because of major advancements in dentistry, most people are candidates for dental implants. There may be exceptions due to chronic illness, heart disease, and severe osteoporosis.  

What does the dental implant procedure involve?

The average dental implant procedure takes three to four visits. The first visit is to x-ray the area and take an impression for a surgical guide and a temporary prosthesis to cover the implant. The next visit is to place the implant. A local anesthetic is applied to the area. (Any additional sedation is not necessary unless deemed so by the dentist.) The dentist makes a minor incision and places the implant into the jawbone. The area is then covered with sutures. The procedure is usually completed with minor pain.

You will return in approximately three months so the dentist can begin creating the porcelain crown to place over the implant.

How much does a dental implant cost?

Fees for dental implants vary from dentist to dentist. Always schedule an implant consultation to discuss the procedure and all fees involved.

How long does a dental implant last?

With routine dental hygiene and proper home care, a dental implant can last from thirty years to a lifetime.

Does your office offer financing for services provided?

Please contact us to discuss the options we have available to make your perfect smile today!

 
 
 
Tallahassee Dentist | Q & A. Thomas J. Thacker, DDS is a Tallahassee Dentist.