Signs We Need to Look for TMJ Problems

Problems with the temporomandibular joint (“TMJ” for short) are fairly common among the populace today. Fortunately, they are also usually quite easy to address. Here are some things you should look out for, as they may be an indication that you have an issue with your TMJ.

Cracking or Popping: One of the most common symptoms of TMJ problems is a popping sensation in your jaw when you open your mouth too wide. If this is something that you experience, let us know about it. We can perform a very quick inspection of your TMJ to determine if you may need some treatment.

Headaches: If your TMJ is not operating properly, one of the many issues that it can cause is unexplained headaches. Of course, you can get a headache for any number of reasons, so a headache in and of itself doesn’t mean too much. However, if you are experiencing frequent unexplained headaches, please come see us. Fixing the issue could be as simple as crafting a splint for you to wear when you sleep, and you’ll find that you feel much better.

Unexplained Excessive or Uneven Tooth Wear

Of course, if the hinge where your jaw moves is misaligned, it is very frequent to develop teeth that are excessively or unevenly worn. You may not even know that you have TMJ issues, but we will often be able to tell simply by examining your teeth.

Treatment for TMJ Problems

A full discussion of what you can do to treat your TMJ is beyond the scope of this article. Suffice to say that you have many options available, and treating TMJ is often fast, painless, and easy. After treatment, you will find that you feel much better—and, if you have been suffering from headaches, they’ll go away.

So if you have any of the above symptoms, or any other reason to suspect a TMJ issue, please let us know. We’ll have you fixed up in no time.

Signs Your Surgical Site May Be Getting Infected

Infection is a serious issue that may arise after having oral surgery. In order to take care of any issues that might arise, it is important to realize any symptoms that show that the area might be infected.

These symptoms should not be ignored. Once you notice them, give our office a call and our knowledgeable oral surgeons can provide further direction once they assess the situation.

Signs of Infection After Oral Surgery

There are many signs that can arise, and every patient is different. It is important to note that you may not notice all of these symptoms at the same time, you may just notice one or two of them. However, having any of them means that you should be assessed by one of our professionals here at the office.

• Bad breath and bitter taste in the mouth
• Fever
• Extreme pain or more than manageable pain in the mouth
• Swelling that is more than what is normal
• Swollen glands in the neck
• Extreme sensitivity to hot or cold items
• Difficulty moving the jaw or swelling in this area
• Redness in or outside of the area
• Pus that is clearly oozing from the site
• Having difficulty breathing or swallowing
• Bleeding for 24 hours or more that will not stop

Reduce your chances of infection when you follow the instructions given by our oral surgeon. These directions are provided to reduce the chances of having any infections or complications arise. Antibiotics may have been given after surgery and they should be taken as directed.

For more information on infections, or oral surgery in general, give our office a call to learn more. Our oral surgeons are knowledgeable and professional in what they do. We can work to clear up the issue and get you back on your feet once again. An infection is not something that should be ignored. Our office can help.

How We Can Help if You Struggle with a Crown Fracture

A dental crown is a cosmetic restoration to fix problems such as broken or chipped teeth. A crown works as a cap and covers a tooth when we can’t repair it with a filling.

Depending on the material used, crowns last for many, many years, but they can get chipped or cracked with normal wear and tear or if you don’t take care of them. Metal crowns will last longer than porcelain ones.

While crowns are made to withstand the forces used by your mouth when eating and chewing, there are instances in which they can fracture, such as when you suffer a blow to the face, a fall, or bite down on something hard. You can also have a fractured crown if you suffer from bruxism, the unconscious grinding, and clenching of the teeth at night.

Treatment for a Fractured Crown

When a crown on one of your teeth fractures, you should call us immediately so that we can take care of you. Depending on the fracture, you will need an emergency appointment. If there are sharp edges that are hurting the soft tissue in your mouth, we should see you right away to replace it.

In the meantime, you can examine the crown and remove it, if it’s loose or dislodged to prevent swallowing it. Depending on the condition of the tooth, you may experience sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures. If there is bleeding from a fractured crown, you can use a piece of folded gauze and bite firmly on it for several minutes.

You can also use dental cement if you don’t have access to our office or the fracture happens after hours. We will do everything possible to bring you in as soon as we can.

Once you come to see us, we will examine you and determine the best treatment for you which can include replacing the crown or repairing it. If you took out the old crown, please bring it with you.

How Oral Surgery Can Help Treat Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea is a severe disorder that can gravely affect a person’s quality of life due to a lack of sleep. Our surgeons can help you and treat you with different procedures, some of which are non-surgical.

Sleep apnea can be caused by other disorders or conditions, such as enlarged tongue muscles that block the air passages when you sleep.

One of the most common non-surgical methods to treat sleep apnea is the CPAP which is an appliance that is placed over the mouth to allow air to pass uninhibited and can be used for moderate sleep apnea. In some cases, even if you have surgery for your condition, you may still need to use the CPAP for sleeping.

Surgical Options for Sleep Apnea

Some of the most common surgical options for sleep apnea include:

Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (UPPP) – a surgery in which excess palate tissue is removed or repositioned to widen the airway. This can consist of removing your tonsils, but in general, other operations or treatments are needed for severe cases of sleep apnea.
Radiofrequency Volumetric Tissue Reduction (RFVTR) – this is a surgical option for people with mild to moderate sleep apnea. Our surgeon cauterizes the tissue around the throat to shrink and tighten it.
Genioglossus Advancement – our surgeon moves the tongue attachment forward to prevent it from blocking the airways.

Oral surgery can be beneficial to patients who suffer from mild to severe sleep apnea which is disrupting their and their partner’s sleep. Lack of sleep can lead to poor work and school performance and can even endanger someone’s life while driving.

If you suffer from sleep apnea and want to do something about it, let us know, and we can schedule a consultation to review your history and overall health to determine the best treatment option for your situation.

foods to eat after dental implants

Eating Only Soft Foods Will Likely Result in Us Seeing You a Lot

There is nothing wrong with eating soft foods. Ice cream, smoothies and other soft foods are delicious. Some people take it to the extreme. They eat only soft foods.

They may have a reason for eating only soft foods. It may seem to make sense to them. While they may think it is okay to do this, the truth is it can hurt your teeth and gums. You could end up in our office more than you want if you follow a diet that includes soft foods.

People Eat Soft Foods Because They Have To

If you have had oral surgery, you need to eat soft foods for a few days as you recover. As you slowly add other foods as you heal. Once you have completely healed from the oral surgery, you go back to a normal diet that includes all types of textures.

There are some people who turn to soft foods, even if they have not undergone any oral surgery. They may do this because their teeth are sensitive and hard food or chewy food is difficult for them to eat. Their inability to eat other food is a sign that they may already have problems with their teeth that requires a visit to our office.

Exercising Teeth and the Jaw

While you do not want to eat food that is so hard it breaks your teeth, that does not mean you want to avoid food that is difficult to chew altogether. The jaw is a muscle and muscles need exercise. Hard food can also help keep your teeth strong and clean.

The best diet to follow is a varied diet. That includes eating foods from all the food groups and eating foods of all textures. When you follow a healthy diet, your oral health will benefit.

Contact us today if you need to schedule your next appointment at our office.

Dr. O with dental implant patients

Facial Surgery Is Something We Can Help Treat

When you hear the word surgery, you picture an operating room with a bunch of lights and people standing around wearing masks.

There are also other types of surgeries that do not require this type of setting. Our dental office is equipped to help people with facial surgery that need treatment. It is a safe and effective way to perform different procedures that offers many advantages.

Types of Surgeries

Like any type of medical procedure, there are some types of facial surgeries that are more common than others. Many people may not even think of some of these procedures as a surgery. The most common type of facial surgery we perform is a tooth extraction. A tooth extraction is necessary when for diseased teeth, impacted teeth and teeth that are broken and chipped. This is a procedure done with local anesthesia in our office.

Some of the less common types of surgery that we do can help with health and cosmetic issues.

Jaw correction surgery – This type of surgery can help a misaligned bite that orthodontics could not correct.
Cleft Lip – Repairing a cleft lip is one of the most rewarding types of facial surgery. It not only helps a person physically, it helps them emotionally as they become more confident about their appearance.

Why This Makes Sense

Some people may think that the only way to perform facial surgeries is in an operating room. What they do not realize is that many of the surgical procedures that we can do are much simpler in our office setting. Performing these procedures in our office allows for shorter recovery times, are less invasive and are just as safe. Most importantly, they are more cost effective.

There is no reason to fear facial surgeries done in our office. Instead, you can embrace how they can help you.

For more information about what we offer, contact our office to schedule an appointment.

implant dentist dallas

What Are Impacted Canines and What Type of Treatment Do They Require?

You have several types of teeth in your mouth. Incisors are in the front, and molars are in the back. In between those are your canines. It is not uncommon for the wisdom teeth, which are molars, to become impacted. What about your canines? Can a canine tooth be impacted, and if so, what can be done?

Impacted Teeth

An impacted tooth is one that cannot grow in all the way. There are several reasons why. Often it is because there is not enough room in the jaw for another tooth. Another common cause is because the tooth is not coming in straight. If an impacted tooth is left alone, it could cause pain and even infection. Impacted canine teeth are not all that uncommon.

It is usually children who have an issue with impacted canines, because the canine adult teeth come in before adulthood. An adult can have an impacted canine if their adult teeth have not yet all come in, or if the tooth was not treated when younger.


When a child has an impacted canine, often we will recommend braces. This will help for the tooth to have room to come in and will make sure that it will be straight. If the child is a little bit older, or if the tooth did not come in correctly after braces, we might need to fuse the tooth. In rare cases, extraction might take place.

The most important thing that you can do to make sure that your child does not have an impacted canine is to see us on a regular schedule. That is the only way that we will be able to tell that your child’s mouth is healthy. If something doesn’t come in properly, we want to take care of it immediately.

Types of Damage We Often Repair with Those Having Oral Piercings

You may think that oral piercings look cool, but they can do a lot of damage to your teeth, gums, and tongue. Consider long and hard what the consequences may be before you get such piercings. Here are some of the types of damage we often repair that are caused by oral piercings.

Tooth Damage

An oral piercing can really mess with your teeth. If it is a lip ring, it will rub against one or more teeth, which can damage the enamel. It can also chip your teeth. Even worse than a lip ring is a tongue ring. This will hit your teeth as you eat and also as you talk. It does not take long for a tongue ring to damage your teeth.

Gum Damage

Oral piercings will also hurt your mouth by damaging your gums. Lip rings can rub against your gums, causing a tear or other irritation. Tongue rings are even worse for your gums with several studies suggesting that people who have tongue rings have a much higher instance of gum disease than those who do not have a tongue ring.

If you have any oral piercings, make sure that you take care of them while also taking extra care of your mouth. Do not miss brushings and make sure you use mouthwash. This will help keep down the number of bacteria that can lead to infection.

If you have oral piercings, and they give you any trouble, come in to see us right away. You do not want to risk infection. If you notice any damage to your teeth from the piercings, let us know so we can repair them. It is our recommendation that you do not get any oral piercings to begin with.