Category Archives: Blog

Are Dental Implants Worth It? 3 Reasons the Answer is YES

Considering Dental Implants?
Discover Why They Could Be Worthwhile

Are you looking to replace or repair a tooth or teeth? There are many options for dental surgery and prosthetics, like root therapy and removable dentures. Dental implants are another option. With all of these choices, you may be asking yourself, are dental implants worth it?

While dental implants aren’t right for every situation, they may be a good option for your long-term dental health and comfort.  Read on to find out why.

3 Reasons Why Dental Implants are Worthwhile

  • are dental implants worth itThe Fit. Dental implants fit better than other options. Dental implants are metal rods that are surgically implanted in place of your tooth roots and have individual synthetic teeth, called crowns, bridges, or dentures attached to them. Since they are integrated into your existing oral structure, your dental implant experience will be just like having your existing teeth. Implants don’t need regular upkeep to maintain the fit the way loose options like dentures, do.
  • The Longevity. Implants are more permanent than alternatives. Once the procedure is finished, a dental implant replaces your existing tooth and root with a prosthetic. That means that the dental implant is worth it for a long time. For example, traditional bridges normally last for a range of five to 10 years, but dental implants can last for your whole life, even if you have to make small regular adjustments from time to time.
  • The Oral Health Benefits. Dental implants strengthen your whole mouth, not just your teeth and roots. When the implants are placed, they are bonded with your jawbone in a process called osseointegration. This means your jaw and implant are fused together and strengthen each other. With this combined fortification, your dental implant experience can be a strong one that’s built to last.

Dental implants do have many advantages, but they’re not always the best choice in all situations. Schedule a consultation with an expert at Penn Dental Family Practice at 215-898-PDFP(7337) to see what option is right for your oral health. We have periodontic and prosthodontic experts available that can review the procedures available and see if dental implants are worth it for you.

The Halloween Dilemma: Why Do My Teeth Hurt When I Eat Sweets?

Dental hypersensitivity can be successfully treated at Penn Dental Family Practice

Maybe your kids have asked you the question following a night of trick-or-treating and divulging in Halloween candy… Maybe you find yourself asking it after secretly helping yourself to more than your share of your child’s candy stash…

Why do my teeth hurt when I eat sweets?

It’s a question that’s of particular relevance around Halloween and the holidays that follow, when sweet treats seem to appear everywhere you turn. For many dental patients, however, sensitivity to sugar is a year-round problem.

Tooth sensitivity can cause symptoms of mild to severe pain, which takes a great deal of the fun out of Halloween candy, desserts, and many other simple pleasures of life. If you’re regularly asking “why do my teeth hurt when I eat sweets?”, a visit to Penn Dental Family Practice can bring you the resolution and relief you’re seeking to the tooth pain sugar may induce.

4 Causes of Tooth Sensitivity to Sugar

Penn Dental Family Practice offers renowned, specialized dental care that utilizes the most advanced diagnostic tools and emphasizes special attention to detail. There are several causes for tooth sensitivity to sugar (or general tooth sensitivity); the specific conditions will likewise vary from patient to patient. A thorough dental examination can determine exactly what is causing your painful symptoms.

Listed below are the four most common causes of the tooth pain eating sweets may trigger:

  • why do my teeth hurt when i eat sweetsEnamel or Cementum Loss
    Both enamel and cementum function to protect the teeth; enamel covers the crowns, while cementum covers the roots. A loss of either can expose the tooth’s inner nerves and pulp, heightening sensitivity to sweet substances, as well as salty, sour, hot, or cold foods.
  • Acute Tooth Damage
    Teeth sensitivity to sugar that begins abruptly may be caused by a tooth injury or acute tooth damage. A crack or fracture may cause exposed nerves and trigger painful sensitivity. In cases of acute damage, the sensitivity will be isolated.
  • Cavities
    Another source of acute, isolated sensitivity to sweet substances is cavities. The formation of a cavity can penetrate through the tooth’s surface enamel, exposing and affecting the inner pulp.
  • Tooth Whitening Treatments
    Dental hypersensitivity has commonly been reported following at-home or professional tooth whitening treatments. In these cases, the pain tends to be short-term.

There are numerous treatment options available for those suffering from hypersensitive teeth. Depending on the particular cause of symptoms, treatment may range from a change in brushing habits (softer brushing) and reduction in consumption of acidic foods to dental surgery to repair a damaged tooth.

Whatever the cause of your dental hypersensitivity, Penn Dental can find an effective solution for you. If you’re asking “why do my teeth hurt when I eat sweets?”, contact Penn Dental Family Practice today. We will identify the root cause and offer you the best treatment options available.

3 Reasons to Visit the Root Canal Specialists

Let the Tooth Pulp Experts Help You Keep Your Natural Teeth

How do you know if you even need a root canal? What are the signs and symptoms that a root canal or other endodontic treatment is needed? What is an endodontist, anyway? We’re so glad you asked.

root canal specialistsYou might have already figured out that root canal specialists specialize in root canals, but they tend to go by a more professional name – endodontists.  

Endodontists specialize in treating a very important part of your tooth that you don’t see: the tooth pulp. If the tooth pulp has been damaged by injury or decay, an endodontist may be able to save your natural tooth by performing root canal therapy. All dentists are trained in diagnosing teeth that could benefit from endodontic intervention, but not every case is the same. Therefore, root canal specialists are needed to diagnose and treat the tooth pulp damage that’s discovered.

In order to become a root canal specialist, endodontists must complete dental school plus an additional 2 to 3 years of postgraduate training, performing only endodontic treatment. Additionally, endodontists must be licensed in the state where they practice and must stay current with continuing education requirements.

The Root Canal Specialists Will See You Now!

Below are 3 reasons that indicate you may need to see an endodontist soon:

  1. Tooth Pain. We’ve all experienced tooth pain from time to time, but there are specific types of tooth pain that can indicate it might be time to seek out an endodontist. If your tooth pain is causing you to stay up at night, you experience pain when you bite down, your pain is sharp, throbbing, dull, or achy, or if no amount of over-the-counter pain relievers are effectively providing relief, you should call Penn Dental Family Practice. We will help you figure out if you need to see an endodontist.
  2. Fractured or Chipped Tooth. If you’ve fractured or chipped your tooth, you might experience some pain, which may go away with over-the-counter pain relievers. However, if your tooth is visibly cracked or chipped, it may be time to see an endodontist and see if treatment is needed to save your tooth.
  3. Swelling. Any swelling around the root of the tooth in the gumline can indicate a bacterial infection is brewing. Bacteria that gets in through decay or injury can make its way to the tooth pulp, causing an infection and inflammation which can then turn into an abscess. The sooner you see a dentist, the better, as the infection will only get worse if left untreated.

If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms it’s important you see your dentist so that you can be referred to an endodontist if needed. Your overall health depends on your oral health, and a necessary root canal procedure is one that should not be delayed. End this year and begin the new year with a smile that makes you proud and a mouth that is not in pain!

To see any of our root canal specialists, contact Penn Dental Family Practice at 215-898-PDFP(7337).

Our Campus Dentist in Philadelphia Cares About Students’ Dental Health

Don’t Forget About Your Oral Health While You’re in College!

As you walk through the beautiful campus of the University of Pennsylvania, you’ve probably noticed that the leaves are changing, fall has arrived, and you’re beginning to find your college life routine. Maybe you’re working, attending classes full-time, involved in activities, and studying in your free time (of course!), but this college life seems to take up all your time. It feels like you don’t have time to take care of your basic needs like seeing a doctor, a dentist, grocery shopping, visiting with friends, and so many other necessities.

campus dentist philadelphiaAt Penn Dental Family Practice we can help you take care of one of those necessary items on your list! If you’re in need of a campus dentist in Philadelphia, then you’re in luck! Our Locust Walk location has a campus dentist that is easily accessible to you and can fit you in for an appointment around your busy schedule.

According to the Journal of Health Disparities Research and Practice, a study was conducted to investigate the dental health of US college students. In 2013, research showed that nearly 76.6% of students did receive dental cleanings and exams. However, after their freshman year, dental visits began to decline annually. International students were the least likely to get connected with a dentist in the city where their university was located.  

At Penn Dental Family Practice, we think that’s unacceptable, and we want to make sure every student in need of a dentist gets connected with one. Here are 3 reasons why we think our campus dentist in Philadelphia is right for you.

Why You Should See Our Campus Dentist:

  • Convenience. Did we mention we can make visiting the dentist convenient for you? Seeing a dentist can’t get any easier than having it right on campus! This means you can walk, bike, or take a campus bus to your appointment. And if you have some time in between classes, you can schedule your appointment during your normal school hours and it won’t cut into other important things like studying or sleeping.
  • Time. As a busy college student you don’t seem to have time to do anything but eat, breathe, and sleep your studies, but chances are you have just enough time to see a dentist for your biannual dental appointment. You can schedule an appointment before, after, or during a break between classes. The Locust Walk location opens at 7 a.m. and closes at 7 p.m., giving you the time you need to make sure your smile stays healthy.
  • Cost. Cost factors into a lot of important things these days, and we know that college students often have limited funds due to the cost of their education. According to the American Dental Association, 35.7% of adults don’t see a dentist due to cost. Because we want to ensure that every student receives the dental care they need, we provide financing options with our CareCredit. We also have a financial coordinator on staff to help find a financing option that works for you.

The truth is, college students get cavities too! So don’t put your dental health on hold while you focus on your education. Your smile deserves some attention too! It’s time to make your appointment with Penn Dental Family Practice. Contact us at our Locust Walk Location (215) 898-PDFP(7337). If you’re a new patient, we’ll even offer you a complimentary Oral-B Power Brush.

All About Your Philadelphia Family Dentistry Visit

Everything You Need to Know About Preventative Dental Care for Your Family!

Are you searching for family dentistry in Philadelphia? Don’t wait any longer to book an appointment! Dental visits are down overall nationwide. In fact, 100 million Americans don’t even see their dentist yearly. Maybe you only make an appointment when you suspect you have an oral issue, or when you know you need dental work due to pain. But regular checkups and exams for your entire family can help prevent problems down the line and find dental troubles before they worsen!

Answering Your Philadelphia Family Dentistry Visit Questions

Q: Why should we see a dentist?

Philadelphia Family DentistryA: Regular dental visits are vital for stopping dental dilemmas before they start, because you’ll receive expert, preventative care. Even if you’re not experiencing any painful symptoms, a qualified dentist may find issues that you wouldn’t notice yourself. If found early, a dentist will know the steps to prevent any problems from spreading and becoming worse, and addressing any problems already present.

Finding the best dentist in Philadelphia means you and your family will be seeing an expert who knows how to keep your mouth healthy, both now and in the years to come.

Q: What will my family’s first visit be like?

A: Maybe you’re reluctant to schedule an appointment because you’re not sure what a visit to a Philadelphia family dentist will be like. Typical visits will include a cleaning, an exam, and usually an X-ray. The cleaning will remove any tartar and plaque from your teeth, followed by polishing and flossing them. Next, your dentist will examine your mouth. They may also consult with you about your dental and medical history. The X-ray, if it’s done, will give a full inside-out picture that your experts can further examine your teeth.

Q: What can we do before we go?

A: You can take steps now for preventative care before you visit a Philadelphia dentist! Drink water as often as you can, especially water with fluoride if available from your tap. Make sure your diet is high in calcium and as low in sugar as possible. Sugar gives the bacteria that cause cavities fuel to grow. Brush and floss your teeth at least twice a day. If you’re going to participate in any physical activity, use a protector like a mouthguard. These are just some ways to keep your teeth strong right away before you enter a dental office!

Penn Dental Family Practice: Excellent Family Dentistry in Philadelphia

If you want to schedule your Philadelphia family dentistry appointment, contact us at Penn Dental Family Practice at 215.898.PDFP(7337). Our offices are located in the Philadelphia area, and we offer specialized care in all areas of dentistry.

Oral Surgery Guide – 3 Steps to Dental Implant Installation

Why You Might Need Dental Implants (And How They Work!)

Are you considering dental implants? Maybe you’ve just lost a tooth or have had problems with dentures or prosthetics in the past and need a more permanent solution.  If you’re considering getting dental implants, this dental implant guide will help.

dental implants guideWhat are dental implants exactly? Technically speaking, they are rods, usually metal, that replace the tooth’s natural root. Roots anchor teeth to the jawline and keep teeth stable and strong enough to chew and use. Dental implants fill the same role. After the dental implants are guided in and set, false teeth are attached to them. After the procedure is complete, the new (implanted) teeth act as a replacement for missing teeth and can last a lifetime.

Why choose dental implants over other options such as dentures?

  • For one, they are more stable and easier to use especially in situations where other prosthetics won’t do.  Many people prefer dental implants over dentures because they’re more comfortable–you can’t even feel them because they act just like a natural tooth.
  • In addition, the jawbone starts to break down when there’s no root, leading to further disfigurement where the gum area looks sunken and rotten. Dental implants preserve the bone by providing a new anchor, which stimulates bone growth for a healthy jaw.

A Step By Step Dental Implants Guide

How does the process work? Here, we break down the procedure down into three major steps:

  1. First, the dental implant or implants are placed in the oral cavity or cavities. This is done through oral surgery and sometimes uses a dental implant surgical guide as a template for the procedure.
  2. Next, the jawbone will grow around the implant. It can take possibly months before the implants are fully set, but in some cases the implants and replacement teeth can be set in one visit.
  3. Finally, the prosthetic tooth or teeth, also called a dental crown, are attached to the implant. These can be tailor-made in different shades, shapes and sizes depending on your unique set of teeth.

To learn more about dental implants and whether this could be an appropriate treatment for you, please consult the doctors at Penn Dental Family Practice at 215-898-PDFP(7337). They will be your dental implants guides, helping you understand options, explaining the budgeting choices to find the most cost-effective tooth replacement option available.

The Best Campus Family Dental Office For UPenn Students

Don’t let those college years negatively affect your smile.

Whether you are a returning student to the University of Pennsylvania or you’re only beginning your college journey, you’ll experience some changes this coming year. These changes may be meeting new people, the freedom of being on your own, and the intensity of studying. Some students don’t realize the sheer amount of late night studying they’ll encounter when they enter college, and with late nights come increased amounts of sugary caffeinated drinks, sugar-filled foods, and a drop in their oral hygiene routine.  So how can college students of UPenn keep up those late nights without damaging their smile? By visiting our PDFP campus family dental office at Locust Walk.

4 Reasons PDFP Should Be Your Campus Family Dental Office

  1. PDFP Campus Family DentalConvenient Location – Location can sometimes factor into the maintenance of a person’s dental health. At Penn Dental Family Practice, we understand the demanding schedules of college students, and we want to make it as easy as possible for them to schedule dental appointments. That’s why our Locust Walk campus dental office offers the convenience of location. It serves as a friendly reminder that their dental health is still important even when they’re away from home.
  2. Time According to the American Dental Association, 28.4% of people ages 18-34 don’t see the dentist regularly because they just don’t have the time. With Penn Dental as your campus family dental office, you don’t have to worry about time being a factor. Schedule your appointments before, in between, or after classes. Since the location is so convenient you don’t have to worry too much about your commute time.
  3. Multiple Specialties While keeping your regular dental appointments is important to your oral health, our on-campus dental office provides more than general dentistry. At Penn Dental Family Practice, our Locust Walk location provides multiple specialties to care for all your dental health needs. Here are just a few of the dental specialties we have in our office:
  • General Dentistry
  • Cosmetic Dentistry
  • Endodontics
  • Prosthodontics
  • Orthodontics
  • Pediatric Dentistry
  • And So Much More
  1. Financing Options – Another significant reason people don’t go to the dentist is cost. In fact, the ADA says that almost 36% of people avoid seeing the dentist because of cost. As a college student, we understand there you may not have much money to spare, so seeing a dentist might seem like an unnecessary expense. If that’s the case, Penn Dental Family Practice offers financial options with CareCredit, giving you the ability to maintain your beautiful smile.

As a college student, you might think your teeth are healthy enough, but the reality is that pulling those all night study sessions can affect your smile. Contact the PDFP at Locust Walk to schedule an appointment today. And if you’re a new patient, you can receive a complimentary Oral B Electric Toothbrush.

Start Your Orthodontic Treatment Adult Program This October!

October is Orthodontics Awareness Month!

When we think of orthodontics, most of us think of those advertisements of smiling kids in braces. But that’s not a totally accurate picture of what braces are, or what they can do for you. Braces aren’t just for those smiling kids, or even just for kids at all. Adults can also greatly benefit from the straightening and adjusting that braces can provide.

Penn Dental Family Practice is just what the name suggests: a family practice. We want all of our patients to know that braces are available for whoever needs them, not just kids. This October, we want to mark Orthodontics Awareness Month by helping our adult patients learn about an orthodontic treatment adult plan that will help them get the smile they want.

Penn Dental Family Practice offers several solutions for orthodontic treatment adult plans. If you’re an adult considering orthodontic treatment, take a look at how we offer adult orthodontic treatment. If you think you might be interested in taking the next steps, give us a call. We would be happy to help you discover what adult orthodontic treatment can do for you.

Orthodontic Treatment Adult Programs for Our Patients

orthodontic treatment adultAdult orthodontic treatment is very similar to the more common orthodontic treatment that we provide for kids. When you’re looking for an orthodontic treatment adult program, though, keep in mind the patients that the orthodontist you’re working with is used to seeing. It’s best to go with an orthodontist that you know is used to seeing adult patients.

There are a few differences between adult orthodontic treatment and the more typical children’s orthodontic treatment. The first is that while an adult’s mouth is finished growing, a child’s mouth, even an older child or teenager, is usually still growing. As a result, adult teeth are fixed, fused by the root to the bone. This makes them more difficult to move, and requires orthodontists to use slightly more forceful methods.

However, traditional wire-and-bracket braces are not the only option for orthodontic treatment adult plans. Adults often opt for Invisalign, an orthodontic treatment plan for adults and some children that emphasizes a discreet approach to orthodontics. Instead of braces with highly visible brackets and wires, this approach uses clear “aligners” that fit over your teeth. These aligners are changed out approximately every two weeks, keeping your teeth moving along a path designed by your dentist.

Invisalign allows adults to receive orthodontic treatment at the same speed (or sometimes faster) than using braces, but invisibly, and without uncomfortable brackets and wires. Many adults opt for this treatment because it is so discreet, and because the results are good. Penn Dental Family Practice is proud to offer both Invisalign and traditional braces, and we are happy to answer any questions you might have about finding orthodontic treatment as an adult. Make sure you ask about getting an appointment at our University City location–the new iTero intraoral scanner there makes getting Invisalign a breeze!

How A Simple Dental Scan Could Change Your Results

The New iTero Scanner at Locust Walk Changes Everything

Before our team of expert dentists can do anything about your smile, they need to know everything going on inside your mouth. They need to know:

  • PDFP iTero Scanner StatWhat your teeth look like
  • How they fit together
  • What your bite is like
  • Other important aspects of your dental history

In the past, there were only a few ways to get that information, and the most effective was the dreaded dental impression.

At Penn Dental Family Practice, that practice is becoming a part of the past! The iTero intraoral scanner, at our Locust Walk location, allows us to perform a dental scan instead of an impression. No longer do patients have to sit with a mouthful of sticky goo just to find that the impression slid and they have to do it again. The dental scan from the iTero scanner is quick, easy, and noninvasive. It will improve your dental experience from start to finish. Here’s how.

The Revolutionary New Dental Scan and You

What does a dental scan have to do with you and your future? You may not realize the impact a tool like this can have on your dental care. We see it as one giant step of progress in the dental field which will improve your results long-term. Treatment is only as strong as the accuracy of the diagnosis. That’s why we’re glad to be at the cutting edge of this new development in dental technology!

The dental scans that we perform with the new scanner will be used in a variety of ways. Everything we do that requires a model of a patient’s mouth can benefit from this technology. It allows us to create retainers and other appliances, model braces, create Invisalign aligners, etc. What’s more, the model created by the dental scanner, is far more accurate than the kind you would get from dental impressions, down to the hundredths of an inch!

More Than Just a Picture

The dental scans developed by this technology aren’t just pictures. They’re three-dimensional models that have algorithms built into them to improve accuracy. Using the scans, we can model how your teeth will change over time with various forces applied to them, allowing us to better prescribe retainers, braces, appliances, and Invisalign.

The iTero dental scan is also very quick and easy compared to the most common dental impressions. Instead of placing the tray filled with the impression mold into a patient’s mouth, we perform a quick scan with a wand and look at results in real time. This allows us to better communicate with our patients about what we are seeing and it’s much easier on patients, especially those with strong gag reflexes.

The iTero scanner stands poised to revolutionize the way we do dental diagnosis here at Penn Dental Family Practice. If you have any questions about the scanner or want to schedule an appointment, don’t hesitate to get in touch! We can’t wait to show you what this new technology can do for you.

Dental Insurance College Students Need: 3 Factors to Consider

Why dental insurance is a smart choice for college students

As a college student, getting dental care is probably the last thing on your mind. When you start school, there’s just a lot going on: new classes, new living arrangements, new friends, maybe even a new city (welcome to Philly!) So why should you think about dental insurance?

dental insurance college studentsThe dental insurance college students get should ensure that their dental health needs are taken care of this semester and next, without having to be stressed about expensive treatment. We know that college students have a lot to worry about financially. Living costs, tuition, and books are all priorities. But your health should also be a priority. What’s the use of an education and the college experience if you aren’t healthy enough to enjoy it?

The truth is that unexpected dental expenses can really ruin a semester. The best way to avoid those expenses is to keep your teeth happy and healthy with regular care, and the best way to do that is with good dental coverage. Not convinced? Here’s a few reasons why the dental insurance for college students is something you should think about.

3 Important Factors to Reviewing Dental Insurance College Students Should Consider

You probably haven’t thought much about dental care for college students. You’re past the age where you can expect a lot of cavities, and there are so many other things that are important right now! But your teeth and your dental health might be more important than you realize. Here are a few reasons that dental insurance for students might be a good choice for you this semester.

  • Stress can make gums extra sensitive. Stress hormones and other hormones that are active during typical college years have been shown to make your gums sensitive. This can cause redness, swelling, and irritation in the gums, which makes proper hygiene difficult. If you don’t take care of your teeth, they’ll get more plaque buildup, which increases risk of cavities and disease. On the other hand, keeping your gums happy and healthy with regular cleaning and attention actually guards them against cavities and other problems. A good college student dental insurance plan can help you get the cleanings you need.
  • Sports-related injuries can be prevented with good dental advice. If you’re a student athlete, then you know that injuries can really ruin a semester. Injuries to your mouth and jaw can be prevented with a good mouthguard and proper care, but how will you find a proper mouthguard without dental care? A good dental insurance plan for students can get you that care, and provide additional coverage if you are injured and need dental work.
  • Regular care can be difficult for other reasons. Beyond just stress and lots of coursework, keeping to a regular dental cleaning schedule can be more difficult in college for other reasons. College student are more likely to have complications to their cleaning schedules, like braces, irregular schedules, and tongue and lip piercings. These things may complicate your home dental hygiene regimen, and dental insurance for students can help you deal with them.

As you can see, there are many factors that the dental insurance college students should consider can help with. Want to learn more about Penn Dental Family Practice’s options? Get in touch or set up an appointment today.