Q: How do I know if I have wisdom teeth?
A: Dr.Shlafer takes a special x-ray called a Panorex which shows a view of your whole jaw. This allows him to see if your wisdom teeth are present and how they are positioned in your jaw. Wisdom teeth are the third and final set of molars that most people get in their late teens or early twenties. Sometimes these teeth are valuable to keep when healthy and properly aligned, but more often they are misaligned and require removal. They can position themselves horizontally, be angled toward or away from the second molars or even be angled inward or outward. Dr. Shlafer will discuss with you if removal of your wisdom teeth is necessary and what that procedure involves.
Brace yourself–sugar isn’t the only dental villain!
We use our teeth to talk, chew and smile. Here are some teeth facts you may not have known. Sour can be just as bad as sweet. Acidic, low-pH foods like sour candy, soft drinks, and fruit juices can soften teeth. The result: enamel erosion and diminished tooth size. Dr.Shlafer’s worst nightmare: ultra-sour, ultra-sticky, ultra-sugary kids candies such as Warheads, even sour gummy vitamins can be culprits. When these sour candies were tested,it was found they have a really low pH, nearing battery acid. To make matters worse, a child’s tooth enamel is not mature until a decade after their teeth erupt, so they are more susceptible to the acid. Adults aren’t off the hook: low pH fare includes sour mango, Altoids and even sugar free soft drinks. If you are going to consume highly acidic foods, do it during mealtime, you will minimize the effects. Better yet, chew xylitol-containing gum such as Trident or Orbit. Xyilitol fakes out the bacteria and may help prevent cavities. Finally, don’t forget to brush!
You can be missing teeth at any age. Some people are born missing teeth, most commonly wisdom teeth or incisors (which is located next to the big front tooth). People can inherit missing teeth. Still the most frequent causes of tooth loss are gum disease and cavities. Studies show that 22.8% of Americans age 65-74 and 29.4% of Americans 75 years and older wear dentures. Don’t be a statistic, Dr.Shlafer can help, call for an evaluation today!
Next we will talk about, too much fluoride–is that possible? Braces, can they cause cavities?