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Going to the Dentist

Taking care of your teeth is essential. There are some important things to know about when you go to the dentist.

In most cases, people go to the dentist to have their teeth cleaned. A dental hygienist cleans your teeth, and then afterwards the dentist will come in an take a look at your teeth and gums to make sure everything is okay.

However, sometimes you have a problem that has to be taken care of. Here are the most typical dental problems people have:

a cavity - This is the decay of a tooth. If the dentist doesn't fix it, the decay could get worse and cause pain. To fix a cavity, the dentist will do the following:

  • Determine the area of the tooth that needs to be treated.
  • Numb the area around the tooth with Novocaine. This hurts a little, but you won't feel any pain when the dentist works on the tooth.
  • Use a drill to remove the area of the tooth that is decayed.
  • Fill the hole created by the drill with a filling material. This is usually silver in color and it lasts a very long time.

 

a crown - If a tooth is in really bad shape, the dentist will recommend that you get a crown. Crowns usually go onto molars (the large back teeth).  To put on a crown, the dentist will do the following:

  • Consult with the patient and explain the process of getting a crown. There are usually two appointments required to do this.
  • Remove most of the tooth with a drill, leaving a small area on which to place the crown. This requires Novocaine.  After the drilling is finished, the dentist makes an impression of the area so that a crown can be made from the impression.  The patient gets a temporary crown during this visit.
  • Weeks later, once the crown has been made, the dentist will apply the crown with a very strong adhesive. If necessary, the dentist will make adjustments so that the crown matches the other teeth. This is a painless procedure, so the dentist will not need to give you Novocaine for this visit.

 

an extraction - The tooth has be be removed completely. A dentist can do this procedure, but in many cases,  an extraction is done by a specialist.  The patient receives either a general or local anesthetic, depending on which tooth it is and how difficult it is to extract.

 

a chipped tooth - Your front teeth are prone to chipping. The dentist can fix a chipped tooth by doing the following:

  • Smooth out the area that is chipped. This may or may not require Novocaine. It depends on how large the chipped area is.
  • Apply a substance to the tooth that hardens and becomes part of the tooth. The dentist will have to smooth this out so that it matches the other teeth around it.

 

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