The ABCs of Dental Implants | Walnut Creek Dentist

There are many options for replacing severally damaged or missing teeth. Dental implants are artificial roots that are integrated into your jaw bone to hold a replacement tooth. The following includes a simplified guide for a dental implant procedure. Once you’re presented with the best option, you will be provided with the following information:

  • The cost of the dental implant procedure
  • What is included and excluded with those costs
  • The potential risks and benefits of dental implants
  • If dental sedation is offered and if so, the cost
  • How many appointments will be required
  • What type of care the dental practice will offer
  • What level of commitment is required from you

You may be required to visit the dentist office two or three times, and may have x-rays or CT scans done to show your dentist the exact dimensions and density of the bone where your implant is going to be placed. During this time, the way your top and bottom teeth/jaws meet will also be accessed to allow the dental technician to replicate the way your jaw moves in the dental lab when they are finishing your permanent crown.

Once the implant is placed, you will leave the office and wait for the dental implant to properly heal. During the healing, your gum will heal over the implant and the dental implant itself will integrate into the jawbone, making this phase very important, taking anywhere from 3 to 6 months but will leave you with a lasting smile for years to come.

For more information about dental implants, call Drs. Barmby and Frick in Walnut Creek, CA at 9255-934-5526 or visit www.barmbyfrickprosthodontics.com.

Drs. Barmby and Frick proudly serves patients from Walnut Creek, Concord, Danville, Lafayette, Alamo, Orinda and all surrounding areas.

Gum Disease Will Raise Your Doctor Bills | Walnut Creek Dentist

Oral Health

If you’re not keeping up with good oral hygiene, that harmful bacteria can lead to gum disease, which is an infection of the tissues that surround and support your teeth. Not only can gum disease cause bleeding gums and tooth loss, but recent studies have shown that it may also be linked to major health problems. Here are a few ways gum disease can affect your overall health:

It can harm your heart. Although the cause-and-effect link has not been identified, research indicates that gum disease increases the risk of heart disease. Gum disease can also worsen existing heart conditions.

It may affect your respiratory system. Studies have shown that the bacteria that grows in your mouth can be inhaled, causing respiratory infections including pneumonia, especially if they are suffering from gum disease.

It can make blood sugar tough to control. People who have diabetes are more likely to develop gum disease than those who don’t because those with diabetes are more susceptible to infection, including gum disease.

Your memory can suffer. Some research has suggested that people with gum disease may be at a greater risk for developing Alzheimer’s disease, other research has suggested mild cognitive impairment, such as memory problems that make daily life or tasks more difficult.

You may have problems conceiving. Aside from pregnant woman having increased risks of developing gum disease, one study shows that gum disease can also cause problems with conception, making it harder to become pregnant and may increase the chances of miscarriage.

For more information about ways to ease your dental anxiety, call Drs. Barmby and Frick in Walnut Creek, CA at 9255-934-5526 or visit www.barmbyfrickprosthodontics.com.

Drs. Barmby and Frick proudly serves patients from Walnut Creek, Concord, Danville, Lafayette, Alamo, Orinda and all surrounding areas.

Why Visiting the Dentist Is Not that Bad | Walnut Creek Dentist

Why Visiting the Dentist Is Not that Bad

If you ask 85% of Americans to name their biggest fears regarding their health, they will say, “I hate the dentist”. If you ask why that is, it will be one of two things: the needles or that numbness that seems to last long after the procedure is complete. Unfortunately, there are a lot of needles used in your typical dentist office, and in order to help relieve your anxiety, some type of sedation is administered during the visit. And for many, this makes something as simple as a dental check-up a dreaded fact of life.

Thankfully, there have been a lot of advancements in the world of dental procedures. Now we utilize the digital age by working with technologies like lasers, digital radiology and impressions. In 2012, Convergent Dental introduced an isotopic CO₂ dental laser that can perform more than 95% of restorative treatment WITHOUT the use of needles. No need for needles, no need for anesthesia.

Even more, braces are no longer metal cages surrounding all of your teeth since the development of Invisalign. With 3-D technology, invisible aligners can be custom made for you, and as you follow your treatment plan, these subtle aligners will begin slowly straightening your teeth week by week.

Now, what if you need a more difficult procedure, like a crown or veneers? Chairside Economical Restorations of Esthetic Ceramic (CEREC®) uses computers to design and manufacture ceramic restorations that are metal-free, tooth-colored and completely finished in one single dental visit.

For more information about ways to ease your dental anxiety, call Drs. Barmby and Frick in Walnut Creek, CA at 9255-934-5526 or visit www.barmbyfrickprosthodontics.com.

Drs. Barmby and Frick proudly serves patients from Walnut Creek, Concord, Danville, Lafayette, Alamo, Orinda and all surrounding areas.

What to Do When You Chip a Tooth | Walnut Creek Dentist

The enamel that covers your teeth is considered the strongest tissue in your body, making your teeth very durable. But that doesn’t mean that your teeth can’t still break, crack or chip. Although very rare, your teeth can become damaged in such ways as a result of the following:

  • Biting into/onto something hard
  • Getting hit in the face or mouth
  • Taking a fall
  • Tooth decay or cavities that weaken the tooth
  • Large, old amalgam filling that doesn’t support the remaining enamel of the tooth

Unless a large enough piece of your tooth breaks, it likely won’t result in pain. However, if a large enough piece of your tooth does happen to break off, causing nerve damage inside of the tooth, it will result in pain. This is usually accompanied with tooth sensitivity, especially when you drink or eat hot or cold foods or beverages.

Now if you have a broken tooth, it’s important that you see your dentist as soon as possible. Your dentist will be able to identify the cause of the break, and whether its caused damage to the tooth’s nerves. If the nerve is damaged, the tooth will usually require a root canal. Here are some things you can do until you are able to visit your dentist:

  • Rinse your mouth out really well with warm water.
  • To help reduce swelling and pain, apply a cold ice pack to your cheek or lips over the broken tooth.
  • Take over-the-counter pain reliever.

For more information about chipped tooth solutions, call Drs. Barmby and Frick in Walnut Creek, CA at 9255-934-5526 or visit www.barmbyfrickprosthodontics.com.

Drs. Barmby and Frick proudly serves patients from Walnut Creek, Concord, Danville, Lafayette, Alamo, Orinda and all surrounding areas.

Ouch! I Think I Need a Filling | Walnut Creek Dentist

Dental issues happen. Sometimes it’s accidental, sometimes it is because we haven’t been taking care of our teeth as well as we should. Looks like it’s time to visit the tooth doctor – you’re going to need a filling.

Composite fillings, along with silver amalgam fillings, are the most widely used today. Because composite fillings are tooth-colored or white fillings, they can be closely matched to the color of existing teeth, and are more aesthetically suited for use in front teeth or the more visible areas of the teeth.

As with most dental restorations, composite fillings are not permanent and may someday have to be replaced. They are very durable, and will last many years, giving you a long-lasting, beautiful smile. If you have any of these symptoms, chances are you will need a composite filling or two:

  • Chipped teeth
  • Gapped teeth
  • Cracked or broken teeth
  • Decayed teeth
  • Worn teeth

Composite fillings are done in a day. While the tooth is numb, decay is removed, the space is cleaned and carefully prepared before the new filling is placed. The composite filling will then be precisely placed, shaped, and polished, restoring your tooth to its original shape and function.

It is normal to experience sensitivity to hot and cold when composite fillings are first placed. However, this will subside shortly after your tooth acclimates to the new filling. Going forward, good oral hygiene practices, eating habits, and regular dental visits will aid in the life of your new fillings.

For more information about fillings, call Drs. Barmby and Frick in Walnut Creek, CA at 9255-934-5526 or visit www.barmbyfrickprosthodontics.com.

Drs. Barmby and Frick proudly serves patients from Walnut Creek, Concord, Danville, Lafayette, Alamo, Orinda and all surrounding areas.

Got Your Teeth Whitened? Keep Them that Way | Walnut Creek Dentist

teeth whitening

After getting your teeth whitened you walk out of the dentist office with a bright, white smile – but how do you keep it that way? Proper oral habits. There are also some foods and beverages that should be avoided, especially immediately after getting your teeth whitened. The following list includes a few tips to keep that smile sparkling:

  • Avoid drinking dark colored beverages immediately after getting your teeth whitened. Beverages such as coffee, black tea, red wine and dark sodas stain your teeth quite easily.
  • Avoid eating dark or bright colored foods immediately after teeth whitening, as it can cause staining. Try sticking to eating white foods like chicken, pasta or potatoes.
  • If you smoke, avoid smoking for at least 12 hours, 24 hours if you can help it. There are many ingredients in cigarettes that cause stains.
  • Avoid wearing lipstick immediately after teeth whitening, lipstick is known to stain due to the semi-permanent color.
  • Make sure to brush and floss your teeth daily to remove any build-up that can cause staining. Brushing twice a day and flossing once a day is recommended.
  • Rinse your mouth out with water after every meal to get rid of remaining food debris that could potentially stain your newly whitened teeth.
  • Long term results are determined on how well you keep up with your regular oral hygiene routine. If you stick to these tips that have been listed above your teeth will remain whiter for a longer period of time.

For more information about teeth whitening after care, call Drs. Barmby and Frick in Walnut Creek, CA at 9255-934-5526 or visit www.barmbyfrickprosthodontics.com.

Drs. Barmby and Frick proudly serves patients from Walnut Creek, Concord, Danville, Lafayette, Alamo, Orinda and all surrounding areas.

There’s No Reason to Fear the Dentist | Walnut Creek Dentist

85% of Americans can agree – when it comes to health fears, they will say, “I hate the dentist”. And it’s generally because of two reasons: needles or that numbness that lasts long after the procedure is complete. In order to help relieve your anxiety, some type of sedation is administered during the visit. And for many, this makes something as simple as a dental check-up a dreaded fact of life.

The problem is, one can never be too sure what will happen when they see the dentist. This causes a lot of fear as the dental appointment slowly creeps up on us. It is called dental anxiety. If you are one of those patients that will forever have a problem relaxing with a dentist, we can offer you an oral sedative to help you settle those nerves long enough for you to get through your visit.

Thankfully, we now utilize the digital age by working with technologies like lasers, digital radiology & impressions, and even social media. In 2012, a dental laser was introduced that can perform more than 95% of restorative treatment WITHOUT the use of needles or anesthesia. Even more, braces are no longer metal cages since the development of custom-made invisible aligners. No popped wires, no head gear, no more awful selfies. If you need something like a crown or veneers, CEREC® uses computers to design and manufacture ceramic restorations that are metal-free, tooth-colored and finished in one single dental visit!

For more information about dental anxiety, call Drs. Barmby and Frick in Walnut Creek, CA at 9255-934-5526 or visit www.barmbyfrickprosthodontics.com.

Drs. Barmby and Frick proudly serves patients from Walnut Creek, Concord, Danville, Lafayette, Alamo, Orinda and all surrounding areas.

What Are the Causes of TMJ Disorder? | Walnut Creek Dentist

You notice that you’ve had a lot of jaw pain lately, but can’t figure out why. Nothing has happened physically, but you can’t shake this dull headache, and life hasn’t changed enough for there to be a cause for this pain. Unfortunately, it may be time for a trip to the dentist because you may have TMJ disorder.

TMJ disorders are problems with the jaw joint. A problem with the muscles or joints in your jaw can lead to headaches, ear pain, bite problems, jaw pain and much more. There are several conditions that can end up causing TMJ:

Bruxism, or teeth grinding and clenching. Sufferers of bruxism often wake up with jaw or ear pain. This is due to wear on the cartilage lining of the temporomandibular joint.

Gum chewing or nail biting. Using your teeth as tools is going to eventually damage your teeth, but when it begins to affect your TMJ, it may be time to break this terrible habit.

Malocclusion, or the misalignment of teeth. Some people find it hard to chew on a certain side of their teeth due to misalignment, so they habitually chew on the other side causing excess stress on that side of the jaw.

Previous jaw fractures or injury.

Some of the symptoms of TMJ are headache, ear pain, dizziness and ringing in the ear. If you have any of these symptoms and feel you may have a TMJ disorder contact your dental professional so they may evaluate your symptoms and help alleviate your pain.

For more information about TMJ disorder, call Drs. Barmby and Frick in Walnut Creek, CA at 9255-934-5526 or visit www.barmbyfrickprosthodontics.com.

Drs. Barmby and Frick proudly serves patients from Walnut Creek, Concord, Danville, Lafayette, Alamo, Orinda and all surrounding areas.

Eating with Dentures | Walnut Creek Dentist

Having to wear dentures is going to be an adjustment, especially when you are first fitted. It takes a few weeks for your mouth to get adjusted to the new teeth, so your diet is going to have to change. In honor of National Taffy Day, here are a few tips to get you through that adjustment period smoothly:

Take it slow. Since the first few days are the toughest, it is best to begin with a liquid diet. Choose purees and other soft foods that will help you learn how to begin to chew. Be careful of hot food and drink – because dentures are insulating your mouth, you won’t be able to judge temperature the same way. When drinking, swallow often as liquid can loosen your dentures.

Break it down. When you’re all set to try more solid foods, it is best to begin by cutting your food into very tiny pieces, or a mechanical soft diet. Once chewing, it is best to spread the food out evenly in your mouth so as to help keep your dentures in place. Chew slowly and mindfully.

When the going gets tough. When eating foods like bread or grain cereal, you’ll find that they stick to your dentures. Have a glass of something to help wash these foods down. When it comes to meat, it is best to choose poultry or fish over red meats, but stewed meats will be fine. When it comes down to it, staying away from sticky or hard foods will make the transition best.

For more information about dentures, call Drs. Barmby and Frick in Walnut Creek, CA at 9255-934-5526 or visit www.barmbyfrickprosthodontics.com.

Drs. Barmby and Frick proudly serves patients from Walnut Creek, Concord, Danville, Lafayette, Alamo, Orinda and all surrounding areas.

What Exactly Does a Full Mouth Reconstruction Entail? | Walnut Creek Dentist

Though most of us already know just how important healthy teeth and gums are to our overall health. Most likely, we’ll only feel worried about our oral health once we feel pain in our mouth, we’ve lost one or more teeth, or in cases where the quality of our life has suffered tremendously as simple things such as chewing and speaking has become so painful and hard to do.

Today, modern dentistry has plenty of treatments available that can fix just about anything. A good example is a full mouth reconstruction, which is not actually a single treatment, but rather a process that’s composed of a number of dental treatments. Each treatment works in conjunction with each other, with the end goal of restoring the function, esthetics and health of a patient’s smile.

Treatments may include any one of the following:

  • Bone grafting
  • Tooth extraction
  • Root planing and scaling
  • Gum grafting
  • Antibiotics

If the jaws and gums are healthy, or once they’ve been fully restored, the focus is then on dental restorations, such as:

  • Fillings
  • Root canal treatment
  • Crowns and Bridges
  • Dental Implants
  • Dentures

The patient may then opt to improve the overall esthetics of their newly restored smile via the following cosmetic procedures:

  • Teeth whitening
  • Porcelain Veneers

Achieving the smile you’ve always wanted or getting it back is a much more realistic goal than you think. A full mouth reconstruction can help give you back the smile you’ve lost, as well as improve both your oral health and the esthetics of your smile.

For more information about full mouth reconstruction, call Drs. Barmby and Frick in Walnut Creek, CA at 9255-934-5526 or visit www.barmbyfrickprosthodontics.com.

Drs. Barmby and Frick proudly serves patients from Walnut Creek, Concord, Danville, Lafayette, Alamo, Orinda and all surrounding areas.