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How to help a teething baby

 

Screen Shot 2015-04-08 at 11.44.15 AMWhether you’re a new or seasoned parent, teething can be a hair-graying experience. Crying, whining, drooling and overall crankiness are often a normal part of the process when a baby’s teeth are on the brink of breaking through the gum tissue.  When a baby begins teething, there is no set pattern on when it will begin, how long it will take and how painful it will be.  For one baby teething might happen overnight without pain, while another child might have to go through a long, drawn out and painful experience.  You may sometimes visibly see a rise or lump in the gum for several weeks, while sometimes there may be no visible clue at all until the tooth actually appears.

Which teeth come in first and how many teeth come in?

In total there are twenty primary teeth, which is twelve less than the full set of thirty-two permanent teeth adults have. Each of the baby teeth slowly emerge from the gum over a few weeks or months.  Most children have a full set of primary teeth by the time they are around two or three years old. The teeth can seem very spaced out at first but it’s nothing to worry about; as the full set comes through, the teeth will move into a more normal position.

 These teeth usually last until about the age of six, when the teeth that were first to appear become loose and fall out as the second teeth begin to push through the gums.  The primary teeth continue falling out until roughly the age of twelve.  The following is the most common pattern for baby teeth to appear.

Age

Teeth

Position

6 to 7 months

Incisors

Two central bottom & Two central top teeth.

7 to 9 months

Two more incisors

Top & bottom; making four top & four bottom teeth in all.

10 to 14 months

First molars

Double teeth for chewing

15 to 18 months

Canines

The pointed teeth or “fangs”

2 to 3 years

Second molars

The second set of double teeth at the back

 

 

How will you know if your baby is teething?

Teething symptoms vary from child to child. Some babies are fussier than usual when they are teething so it might make it more difficult to determine what is the exact cause.This may be because of soreness and swelling in the gums before a tooth comes through. These symptoms usually begin about 3 to 5 days before the tooth shows, and they disappear as soon as the tooth breaks the skin. Many babies don’t seem to be affected by teething. 

Irritability:   The pain and discomfort is most often worse during the first teeth coming in and later when the molars come in because of their bigger size

Drooling:  Your baby start drooling more often than normal because teething stimulates drooling

Chin rash:  The constant contact with saliva can cause the skin around the chin and mouth to become irritated

Biting & gnawing:  A baby that is teething will gnaw and gum down on anything she or he can get their mouth around.  The counter pressure from biting on something helps relieve the pressure from under the gums.

Cheek rubbing and ear tugging:  Pain in the gums may travel to the ears and cheeks particularly when the back molars begin coming in

Diarrhea:  It is believed that the most likely cause of this is the extra saliva swallowed, which then loosens the stool

Not sleeping well:  With teething pain happening during the day and night, you may find your child wakes more often at night when the pain gets bad enough

Coughing:  The extra saliva can cause your baby to occasionally cough or gag

How can you help teething pain?

There are plenty of things you can try before resorting to pain relief products or teething gels. Giving your baby something cool to bite on can relieve the pressure and ease the pain. You could try the following: 

  • Rub a clean finger over your baby’s sore gums to numb the pain temporarily.
  • Give your baby a teething ring. Solid, silicone-based teething rings are better than liquid-filled products, which could leak and can’t be sterilised. You could try putting the teething ring in the fridge for a while before giving it to your baby. Don’t put it in the freezer, as this could hurt your baby’s gums.
  • Offering your baby a cold bottle of water can also help.
  • Teething gels.

If you have any questions about teething contact Dr. Chauvins office today.

What is sedation dentistry ?

 

sedation dentistry

What is sedation dentistry

If you’re afraid of the dentist, you’re not alone. But did you know there’s a way of conquering the fears that may have kept you from visiting your dentist for necessary treatment? Using the techniques of sedation dentistry,  your favorite Lafayette Louisiana dentist, Dr. Chauvin can ease your apprehension, and even make the entire experience pain-free. How? By administering a combination of anxiety-relieving and pain-blocking drugs.  

With sleep dentistry the patient can be put in either a conscious sedative sleep state or an unconscious sedative sleep state. With sedation dentistry you can visit your dentist with peace of mind of knowing that it will be a relaxed, pain-free, and anxiety-free visit. If you have long been someone that either fears the pain of dental work or you don’t like having personal space invade then it might be time for you to consider a sleep dentist. 

How does sedation dentistry work?

During your initial consultation, Dr. Chauvin can help you determine which type of sedation medication would work best for you based on your medical background, dental procedure, and current health. Dr. Chauvin offers two types of sedation dentistry in his office – Nitrous Oxide and Oral Sedation

 Nitrous Oxide 

  • Nitrous oxide, or laughing gas,  is inhaled by the patient right before and during the procedure. The patient wears a mask that delivers a combination of nitrogen and oxygen, creating a relaxed state of mind.
  • One reason nitrous oxide is a popular form of sedation is because the effects last only as long as the patient is wearing the mask. Within a few minutes of removing the mask, the patient will feel “back to normal.”

Oral Sedation 

  • With oral conscious sedation, the patient takes a medication in pill form in the hours leading up to the appointment, and possibly again immediately before the procedure begins. The medication makes the patient feel very relaxed but does not put the patient completely to sleep. He or she will be able to communicate with the dentist and will remain alert, but will experience relief from anxiousness and nervousness.
  • Unlike nitrous oxide, which fades very quickly, the effects of oral conscious sedation can last several hours after the appointment. Therefore, patients will need a ride home from their appointments if they have undergone oral sedation.

Who should have sedation at the dentist?

Sedation is best for people with a real fear or anxiety that is preventing them from going to the dentist.

Sedation dentistry can apply for people with:

  • have a low pain threshold
  • can’t sit still in the dentist’s chair
  • have very sensitive teeth
  • have a bad gag reflex
  • need a large amount of dental work completed

 

 

Sleep Dentistry is a still relatively new procedure and something that most people do not take advantage of. For most people seeing the dentist is just another part of everyday life but for others sedation dentistry has made a world of difference. These people are no longer forced to visit their dentist in extreme fear or completely avoid getting the oral care they need. 

People of all ages can experience dental anxiety, which is why Dr. Chauvins strives to make your visits with us as comfortable and worry-free as possible. Please share your feelings and concerns with us so we can help you receive the dental treatment you need at a pace that makes you feel comfortable. Every member of our team has a gentle touch, and our treatment rooms are equipped with TVs and massaging dental chairs to keep you comfortable and entertained throughout your visit. Life can be stressful, but going to the dentist doesn’t have to be!

So, contact us today to set up an appointment! Wether its a routine teeth cleaning or a root canal, everyone deserves a beautiful healthy smile.

A Tooth Friendly Easter Basket

tooth friendly easter basketChocolate bunnies, heavenly hash, and bright yellow peeps are the traditional part of Easter Basket fun. The National Confectioners Association says that Americans spend more than $1.5 billion on Easter candy each year, second only to Halloween candy! This is the equivalent of 25 pounds per candy per person! However, here at your favorite Lafayette dentists office, we have it on good authority from the Easter Bunny that there are many fun items you can include in a tooth friendly easter basket that are not filled with sugar. 

Whether you’re 5 or 35, Easter candy can be incredibly tempting. However, too much of a good thing can be a very bad thing – 92% of adults age 20-64 have had cavities in their permanent teeth. According to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, each person in that same age group has an average of 3.28 decayed or missing permanent teeth and 13.65 decayed and missing permanent surfaces. And it’s not just grown-ups: The Pew Center on the States says that about 60% of children have dental decay. 

Going easy on the sugary, sticky candy that hangs on to teeth long after the taste is gone is a better idea than you might think. Sugar in candy combines with the bacteria in your mouth to create acids, which attack the enamel of your teeth. What tastes so great in the moment can lead to cavities and other dental problems down the road. And if you skip the sugar in your child’s basket, you might even avoid the sugar rush! You can have them to drink plenty of water between each piece of candy. Rinsing their mouth frequently will clean their smile of some acid formation and bacteria from sugar. Since dry mouth is more conducive to bacteria, hydrating your mouth is a good practice for daily oral hygiene. But a better alternative is simply replacing the candy in your tooth friendly easter basket!

Tooth Friendly Easter Basket Ideas:

Maintaining healthy teeth and gums is important, but that doesn’t mean kids can’t have fun with it. 

  • Novelty tooth brush
  • Play Dough
  • Bubbles
  • Glitter Pens
  • Stickers –scratch n sniff of course
  • Legos
  • Fruit snacks
  • Dark chocolate

 

As always, there’s no substitute for brushing and flossing at the end of the day to keep teeth clean and cavity free. The easter bunny never intended for tooth decay to go hand in hand with his delightful reputation.

If you need help keeping your family’s mouth healthy contact Dr. Chauvin’s office today and schedule a check up or teeth cleaning.

 

What’s in toothpaste and how should I pick?

 

whats in toothpaste and how do I pick

whats in toothpaste and how do I pick

Toothpaste no longer comes in simple choices of fluoride and fresh breath. Paste is not even the only option! You also have a choice of an array of colors and flavors. With so many varieties available, it may be difficult to know which features or combinations of ingredients are best for your mouth. Dr. Chauvin and our amazing Lafayette Louisiana team are here to help!

When it comes to dental care products, toothpaste is one of the most important components of proper dental hygiene for kids and adults. It cleans and polishes your teeth and removes bacteria and plaque that cause gum disease, dental decay, and bad breath. Toothpastes contain various ingredients that work in different ways. Detergents produce foaming action to better remove plaque and food particles. Abrasives help remove stains, and fluoride strengthens and protects teeth. The toothpaste you choose should reflect your personal dental care needs.

Types of toothpaste

  • Fluoride Toothpaste –  The most common ingredient in toothpaste is fluoride.  It aids in cleaning the teeth and strengthening the enamel.
  • Desensitizing Toothpaste – Contains active ingredients such as potassium nitrate or arginine that assist in blocking the nerve pathways from the tooth.
  • Whitening Toothpaste –  Usually does not contain bleaches but contain relatively coarse abrasives which function by abrading the stains on the tooth surface, giving a whitening effect. You may want to keep in mind that whitening toothpaste does not do the job of a professional bleaching – it simply helps to remove minor stains and touch up a faded smile and are often too harsh for the average tooth.
  • Tartar Controlled Toothpaste – These help to prevent any further build up of tarter but cannot reach the tartar that collects below your gum line. However some companies are looking to produce toothpaste which fights gum disease.
  • Smokers Toothpaste –  These are specially designed to remove nicotine and tar stains on teeth caused by smoking.
  • Children’s Toothpaste –  These are fairly similar to the adult versions the only difference being that they will contain a smaller amount of fluoride and have more child friendly flavors.

One very important thing to know about your toothpaste is it’s abrasivity.  Toothpaste makers regularly measure their product’s abrasivity. It’s necessary for FDA approval, and usually is not included in marketing. Abrasivity measurements are given by what’s known as an RDA value which stands for radioactive dentin abrasion or relative dentin abrasivity.

There is an ever changing chart to keep up with the values. Anything below 70-80 RDA is considered low abrasive.

 

RDA Dentifrice brand and variety Source
07 straight baking soda Church & Dwight
08 Arm & Hammer Tooth Powder Church & Dwight
30 Elmex Sensitive Plus Elmex
35 Arm & Hammer Dental Care Church & Dwight
42 Arm & Hammer Advance White Baking Soda Peroxide Church & Dwight
44 Squigle Enamel Saver Squigle
48 Arm & Hammer Dental Care Sensitive Church & Dwight
49 Arm & Hammer Peroxicare Tartar Control Church & Dwight
49 Tom’s of Maine Sensitive (given as 40’s) Tom’s
52 Arm & Hammer Peroxicare Regular Church & Dwight
53 Rembrandt Original (RDA) Rembrandt
54 Arm & Hammer Dental Care PM Bold Mint Church & Dwight
57 Tom’s of Maine Children’s, Wintermint (given as mid-50’s) Tom’s
62 Supersmile Supersmile
63 Rembrandt Mint (‘Heffernan RDA’) Rembrandt
68 Colgate Regular Colgate-Palmolive
70 Colgate Total Colgate-Palmolive
70 Arm & Hammer Advance White Sensitive Church & Dwight
70 Colgate 2-in-1 Fresh Mint (given as 50-70) Colgate-Palmolive
79 Sensodyne Colgate-Palmolive
80 AIM Unilever
80 Close-Up Unilever
83 Colgate Sensitive Maximum Strength Colgate-Palmolive
91 Aquafresh Sensitive Colgate-Palmolive
93 Tom’s of Maine Regular (given as high 80’s low 90’s) Squigle (Tom’s)
94 Rembrandt Plus Rembrandt
94 Plus White Indiana study
95 Crest Regular (possibly 99) P&G (P&G)
101 Natural White Indiana study
103 Mentadent Squigle
103 Arm & Hammer Sensation Church & Dwight
104 Sensodyne Extra Whitening Colgate-Palmolive
106 Colgate Platinum Indiana study
106 Arm & Hammer Advance White Paste Church & Dwight
107 Crest Sensitivity Protection Colgate-Palmolive
110 Colgate Herbal Colgate-Palmolive
110 Amway Glister (given as upper bound) Patent US06174515
113 Aquafresh Whitening Indiana study
117 Arm & Hammer Advance White Gel Church & Dwight
117 Arm & Hammer Sensation Tartar Control Church & Dwight
120 Close-Up with Baking Soda (canadian) Unilever
124 Colgate Whitening Indiana study
130 Crest Extra Whitening Indiana study
133 Ultra brite (or 120-140) Indiana study (or Colgate-Palmolive)
144 Crest MultiCare Whitening P&G
145 Ultra brite Advanced Whitening Formula P&G
145 Colgate Baking Sode & Peroxide Whitening (given as 135-145) Colgate-Palmolive
150 Pepsodent (given as upper bound) Unilever
165 Colgate Tartar Control (given as 155-165) Colgate-Palmolive
168 Arm & Hammer Dental Care PM Fresh Mint Church & Dwight
200 Colgate 2-in-1 Tartar Control/Whitening or Icy Blast/Whitening (given as 190-200) Colgate-Palmolive
200 recommended limit FDA
250 recommended limit ADA

 

The ADA Seal

The most important thing you should look for when buying toothpaste is the seal of the ADA (American Dental Association). According to Dr. Ada Cooper, an ADA spokesperson, “This shows the product has been tested, its claims are legitimate and its ingredients are effective.”

The ADA seal indicates that the toothpaste contains fluoride, an ingredient that removes plaque. One of the biggest threats to your dental health, plaque is a sticky film of bacteria that forms on the teeth and gums and can cause tooth decay and gum disease.

You may also want to consider the flavor of your toothpaste. You are more likely to use toothpaste in a flavor you enjoy. If you’re curious about testing a new flavor, but aren’t sure whether you will like it, try a travel-sized tube instead of a full size. Or, ask your favorite Lafayette La dentist, Dr. Chauvin for a sample during your next dental visit!

 

Visiting your dentist

Once you find the toothpaste that is right for you it is important to keep up with good dental hygiene. Brush and floss your teeth twice a day and make sure you schedule your routine teeth cleaning every six months with Dr. Chauvin.

How does a root canal work

How Does a Root Canal Work-Did you know that more than 15 million teeth are treated and saved each year with root canal treatments? Despite those numbers root canals still have a pretty bad reputation.  The root canals stress-inducing reputation took hold several decades ago, when root canal treatment really was painful. Today, its reputation remains unchanged, even though the procedure itself has changed. A survey conducted by the American Association of Endodontists showed that patients who’ve had a root canal performed are six times more likely to describe it as “painless” than those people who have not had root canal treatment.

A simple fix to this bad reputation is understanding the root canal procedure, starting with the anatomy of the tooth. Inside the tooth, under the white enamel and a hard layer called the dentin, is a soft tissue called the pulp. The pulp contains blood vessels, nerves and connective tissue, and helps to grow the root of your tooth during development. In a fully developed tooth, the tooth can survive without the pulp because the tooth continues to be nourished by the tissues surrounding it.

Why is a root canal necessary?

Once the pulp is infected, it must be removed in order to save the tooth. A tooth can become infected for several reasons, including severe tooth decay or a crack or chip in the tooth. The most common way for the pulp to become infected is from an untreated cavity. Failing restorations such as dental fillings and dental crowns can foster bacterial leakage into the dental pulp. Once infected, the dental pulp begins to die and the body’s inflammatory responses set it. The combination of infection and inflammation can cause significant pain. The end result is a toothache. 

You can use the following checklist to help you determine whether a root canal may be called for.

 

  • Do hot or cold food or beverages cause a toothache?
  • Do you find it excruciatingly painful to eat?
  • Is your tooth sore to the touch?
  • Do you have a severe toothache?
  • Do you have a bump (possibly filled with pus or blood) on your gum?
  • Do you have pain that may radiate from one part of your mouth to another or from your mouth into your head or your ear?

What is the root canal procedure like?

Root canal therapy is a complex procedure that requires both skill and experience. Often requiring one or more visits to the dentist. Luckily, you won’t mind seeing your favorite Lafayette Louisiana dentist, Dr. Chauvin, more than once!  The first step in the procedure is to take an X-ray to see the shape of the root canals and determine if there are any signs of infection in the surrounding bone. Local anesthesia is then used to numb the area.  A drill is used to make small hole through the enamel and dentin, and into the pulp. Using flexible nickel titanium pin-like files, the inside of the canal is shaped. This is done delicately, but thoroughly, to completely remove all traces of infection or debris. This process is performed with a great deal of care in order to minimize damage or trauma to the surrounding ligaments and bone.

The next step is to disinfect and seal the tooth using a special type of heat gun to fill the canal with a material called gutta-percha. Gutta-percha is a natural, biocompatible, anti-bacterial material that expands and seals the hollowed area within the span of about 15 minutes. 

If the root canal is not completed on the same day, a temporary filling is placed in the exterior hole in the tooth to keep contaminants out between appointments.

 

The final step may involve further restoration of the tooth. Because a tooth that needs root canal therapy often is one that has a large filling or extensive decay or other weakness, a crown, crown and post, or other restoration often needs to be placed on the tooth to protect it, prevent it from breaking, and restore it to full function.

If you are experiencing pain or think you may need a root canal give Dr. Chauvin in Lafayette Louisiana a call today.