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November 2018 Dentistry Newsletter

Dental Insurance

As we approach the New Year you may be looking at changes in your health insurance for 2019, which may also provide an opportunity to reevaluate your dental insurance.  At Aesthetic Dentistry, P.C. we accept most dental insurance as we do everything we can to help our patients get the treatment they need, without going broke in the process.  We often get asked about where to get dental insurance, how much it costs, is it worth the money, and many other questions.  While we can’t necessarily speak to your specific situation, we can provide some general information.

Most employers who offer health insurance will offer some type of dental insurance, either standard or as an option to be added on.  In this case it’s likely to come with a small monthly fee, but in many cases the plan will then cover standard cleanings for every family member on the plan. For people enrolled in a Marketplace plan it’s important to note that you can only add dental insurance during the Open Enrollment Period.  You can’t add coverage mid-year, so if it’s something you think you’ll need it’s important to add it on right at the beginning.

For those who don’t have an employer option for dental coverage there are options to acquire dental insurance elsewhere.  While this may sound expensive, it doesn’t have to be.  There are dental plans available for as little as $9/month for an individual.  Generally the lowest priced plans will require a copay for an annual cleaning, but it’s often only around $25/cleaning.  For a more extensive, full coverage dental plan you may be looking closer to a few hundred dollars per month.

One important difference between health insurance and dental insurance is the maximum annual benefit.  For most people the maximum amount that the insurance company will pay per year for health care needs is quite high and will cover everything you need, this is not the case with dental coverage.  Most dental plans max out between $1,000-2,000 of coverage per year.  While this may sound like a lot it will generally leave patients with some financial burden for more expensive procedures should those be required. In general, most dental plans cover 50-90% of the cost for reparative procedures such as root canals, crowns and fillings.

Be sure to read the information about your dental insurance options carefully and give the insurance company a call if you have questions about coverage prior to a procedure.  We will do everything we can to work with both you and your dental insurance provider to make sure your needs are covered.



Baby Tooth Eruption

The process of developing teeth is pretty amazing.  At just 6 weeks a fetus has the beginning stages of their teeth.  By 3-4 months into a pregnancy the hard tissue that surrounds teeth has formed.  As a baby grows their teeth develop as the child takes in calcium.  This calcium creates deposits that harden in rings around the bud of the tooth, not that much different than the rings on a tree.  At around 6-9 months after birth an infant’s teeth will begin to erupt through the gums and be visible.  This can be an uncomfortable process for some little ones. We recommend trying to help them keep their gums cool by giving them a cold washcloth or teething ring to suck on.

Over time your little one will add 20 teeth to their smile.  They will start with their incisors, the front center teeth, then the first molars will come in followed by the canines and finally the second molars.  This process can take 2 years to complete.  While every child is different, the general rule is 4 new teeth will erupt every 6 months until all of the teeth are in.

You may ask, “Why does it matters whether I brush baby teeth or not?”  It’s important to remember that these teeth have a big job to do.  They develop the structures of your child’s mouth, act as placeholders for the coming permanent teeth, assist in establishing good speech patterns, encourage good nutrition, and help to shape the face.  In addition, getting your child established with good dental habits will serve them well once their permanent teeth have come in.

Between ages 5 and 6 the roots of the baby teeth will begin to die and the teeth will start to fall out.  Your child’s mouth will be preparing itself for this process by expanding the jaw and facial bones and creating spaces between the primary teeth.  Generally, the baby teeth will fall out in the same order that they came in, beginning with those in the front and going from there.

Understanding the process for your child’s tooth development is important for every parent.  Being informed about what to expect helps you to prepare your child and can help give you clues to a potential dental problem.  While there’s certainly room for variance in the process, every child is unique. If your child’s teeth don’t seem to be following the general pattern for development, you should contact your dentist and set-up an appointment to discuss it further.



Toothache vs Sinus Infection

Tis the season – for the common cold that is!  As you reach for that next box of tissues you may be noticing another annoying symptom, tooth pain.  It can be tricky to figure out whether you’ve got a toothache, which would require a visit to the dentist, or a frustrating sinus infection.  Unfortunately, painful sinus infections are all too common, 28 million adults are reported to suffer from them according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  If you’re one of those who must deal with a sinus infection, you understand how painful it can be and how common the addition of a toothache is. It’s important to know that you should always reach out to your doctor or dentist if you’re not certain about the source of your tooth pain.  A toothache can become extremely painful if left untreated.

In most cases a sinus infection starts off as a cold and tooth pain comes afterwards.  In those situations, it’s generally safe to assume that the toothache is a result of the sinus infection and will ease as the infection resolves.  A sinus infection is defined as a cold that lasts longer than two weeks combined with inflammation of the nasal passage lining – it then develops into an acute sinus infection.  These infections begin in the sinuses located just above your molar teeth roots.  These sinuses can swell and put pressure on your tooth’s nerve ending and cause pain in one or more teeth.

If you experience a throbbing or aching pain in your tooth, independent of a cold or any sinus pressure, you may have a dental problem and you should call your dentist right away for a consultation. Tooth pain will only get worse if left untreated and can lead to nausea, migraines and joint pain.  Your dentist will be able to assess whether you have a cavity, tooth abscess, are grinding your teeth or have some other cause for your pain.

To help with tooth pain caused by a sinus infection, contact your doctor for a prescription for allergies, antibiotics or pain relievers as needed.  Other ways to address a sinus infection include drinking plenty of fluids to hydrate the mucus membranes, taking an expectorant to decrease the pressure in your sinuses, eat spicy food to thin mucus, get plenty of sleep to increase white blood cells and speed the healing process, and try to use pillows to position your body in a way that will allow your sinuses to drain properly.

Whether it’s a sinus infection or a toothache it can be quite painful and disrupt your day.  In either situation seek medical help to get relief from the pain and do everything you can to rest and relax until it passes.



Roasted Veggies Recipe

Looking to add a little color to your table?  Try this delicious recipe for roasted autumn vegetables.

Sweet Potatoes
Red Onions
Red-skinned Potatoes
3-4 Tbsp Olive Oil
Salt & Pepper to taste
2 Tbsp Rosemary

Begin by cutting your vegetables all about the same size for even roasting.  Drizzle all of the vegetables with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.  Chop up some fresh rosemary and stir it in with your vegetables.  Spread your vegetables on a baking sheet that’s been sprayed with cooking spray.  Roast at 425°F for 20 minutes, gently stir, then continue cooking for an additional 20-25 minutes until fork tender.


Past Newsletters

October 2018 Dentistry Newsletter

September 2018 Dentistry Newsletter

August 2018 Dentistry Newsletter

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