Friday, January 9, 2015

Tooth Extraction Care

If you have too much teeth or is suffering from a great toothache, a tooth extraction may be needed.                         
A tooth extraction procedure may be the first step to align your teeth. If there are too many teeth and your bite then becomes too big for your mouth, your dentist will recommend removing a tooth or two.

If you suffer from a great deal of tooth decay and the infection is too big, removing that may be an option. Tooth extraction should be the last option if you suffer from tooth decay. Remember that your natural tooth works best, talk to your dentist if there are other possibilities to save your tooth. Tooth extraction is recommended when the infection is so severe that taking antibiotics or a root canal is not enough. The tooth extraction procedure also helps prevent the increase of infections

Your dentist will use a general anesthesia to lessen the tooth extraction pain.  This is needed especially if you have more than one tooth set to be removed. The anesthesia, apart from lessening the pain, will also make you drowsy and sleepy during the tooth extraction procedure.

For tooth extraction aftercare, stitches may be needed to the spot where the tooth had been removed.  Avoid scouring the area with your tongue. Bite down a cotton gauze pad to relieve and stop the bleeding.  Before the gauze pads become too drenched with blood, change them.

Also part of tooth extraction aftercare, take some painkillers that has been prescribed by the dentist to help with the pain. Avoid smoking and eating solids.  Go on a liquid diet and as much as possible eat only sift foods such as pudding, ice cream, and gelatin. Slowly take in solid foods

Tooth extraction should be done as soon as possible. You may opt to obtain an implant, dental bridge or dentures to fill in the removed tooth.

Dr. Cecilia Lontoc DMD is one of the best Torrance dentists. For more information or to schedule your dental checkup, please call (310) 782-6155  or visit our website at 

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Dental Care Tips During Pregnancy

If you are pregnant, best practice a great family dental care. Here are some dental care tips for you and your baby.

The Basics. Make sure to practice basic dental care such as brush at least twice a day and use floss for healthy gums and teeth.  Spit excess toothpaste so that the fluoride will work better.

Photo from google
Let her know. Tell your dentist if you are pregnant.  The first trimester and second half of the third trimester, critical times when the baby is growing, are times when you should lessen your visits to the dental officeSchedule an appointment to the dental clinic only because of emergencies, such as bleeding gums. Other light treatment for gum disease can be done after the delivery.

Visiting the dental office. If you have a scheduled dental care treatment, plan it on the second semester. Your routinary dental visits should not change just because you are pregnant. Having healthy gums and teeth are important as pregnancy often escalates risk for periodontal disease such as pregnancy gingivitis.

X-ray warning. With today’s technology, x-rays are safer than in the past, however it is best still to avoid dental x-rays during pregnancy.  If an emergency dental procedure calls for x-ray, your dentist will use great precaution if you told her that you are pregnant. 
Photo from google
Morning sickness. If you are experiencing pregnancy sickness, side-step brushing as this oral hygiene practice can easily wear away the  top surface of your enamel. Opt for a bland-tasting toothpaste if morning sickness is making you gag and is stopping you from brushing.  Ask your dentist for referred brands.

Hormonal change. Pregnancy triggers hormonal change in your body. One specific part that it affects are your gums, and this builds up the risk of developing periodontal gum disease.

         Photo from google
Avoid too much sugar. Cravings are natural when you are pregnant, however curb your sweet diet as this may cause tooth decay, especially for you who is pregnant and is more prone to periodontal diseases.

Eat healthy. This is not only for you, but also for the baby growing inside of you.  About three months in to pregnancy, your baby’s teeth start to develop. Make sure to eat dairy food such as cheese and yogurt.

Dr. Cecilia Lontoc DMD is one of the best Torrance dentists. For more information or to schedule your dental checkup, please call (310) 782-6155  or visit our website at 

Root Canal Recovery

The success rate of root canal surgery is at 95 per cent. Many teeth that have had root canal treatment often last a lifetime.

Root canals in general are successful, thus not causing any complications. However, there are instances when after-effects or complications may arise.

Photo from google
First few days. For the first few days after the root canal surgery, the tooth canal may be more sensitive as the tissue may be inflamed. If you feel any discomfort or pain, over the counter pain medications may work as a means for root canal recovery.

Need for restoration. Often a tooth that has undergone root canal surgery may turn more brittle than other teeth.  There are dentists who recommend that a dental crown may be placed if the tooth that has undergone treatment is a back tooth. Also note that the final step of a root canal procedure will include your dentist placing restorations on the tooth.

Beware of root canal infection. Root canal treatments involve baring the tissues and insides of the tooth. There are times when bacteria will also develop causing more gum inflammation, pressure, and pain. If this happens, a procedure called apicoectomy may be needed.

Photo from google

Other dangers of root canal treatment include your dentist leaving some parts of the pulp unclean. There may also be an undetected crack in the root of the tooth. A root canal infection may also arise if a defective dental restoration that will let bacteria into the tooth. 

Dr. Cecilia Lontoc DMD is one of the best Torrance dentists. For more information or to schedule your dental checkup, please call (310) 782-6155  or visit our website at

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Myths about Root Canal ---Debunked

Myths about Root Canal ---Debunked

The idiom I’d rather have a root canal, comes to mind when people talk about worst case scenarios. This is because root canals were very painful. The operative word here being were. 

There are many more false beliefs about a root canal treatment, wherein we will clear up with this article.

Photo from google

Myth #1: Root canals are painful.
Before a patient can know that he needs a root canal procedure, the severe toothache caused by the damaged tissues is the most the agony he will have to experience. With modern technology on dental practices and anaesthetics, patients will experience little pain when having the root canal procedure done. Now, with advances in cosmetic dental surgery, a root canal may feel like a regular dental filling procedure.  A root canal treatment, with the best dentist, can be as painless as possible.

In fact, having an inflamed and decaying tooth will hurt even more than the actual root canal treatment itself.

Myth #2: Root canals need more visit to the dental clinic
Root canal treatment may be completed in two and even just one appointment to the dental office. There are certain factors that will determine how many dental appointments you would need to make. They are the extent of the infection, the complexity of the treatment, and whether another dentist will be necessary.

Photo from google

Myth #3: Root canal can make the patients ill
Almost a century ago, Dr. Westin Price explained that endodontic or root canal treatment can add towards the incidence of diseases in the body. Dr. Price went on saying that tooth extraction, or the removal of one’s tooth is a better alternative.

There is no valid evidence which leads root canal treatments as a contributor to illnesses in the body. There is a recent research that debunks this, as patients who have multiple endodontic treatments have a higher chance of reducing oral cancer.

Tooth extraction is in fact even more bacteria causing and is even traumatic than a root canal. Root canals are safe as the treatment has been intended to eliminate bacteria from the infected tooth, avert repeated infections, and save one’s natural tooth.

Myth #4: A tooth extraction is better than a root canal
Keeping your own tooth is always the best option. This is why a root canal treatment has been recommended rather than a tooth extraction.

Once you have your tooth removed, you will need an artificial tooth, either a dental crown or a dental bridge. With the artificial tooth, there may be certain foods you cannot eat. So, saving your pearly whites and natural tooth has always been the better option.

Dr. Cecilia Lontoc DMD is one of the best dentists. For more information or to schedule your dental checkup, please call (310) 782-6155  or visit our website at

What is Root Canal

Millions of tooth have been saved with root canal. Root canal is a dental treatment wherein a decaying or infected tooth will be overhauled and repaired.

A root canal treatment is recommended when the nerve of your tooth becomes inflamed or damaged.

Endo Steps (photo from google)

Other root canal symptoms include discoloration of the tooth, prolonged sensitivity to pain, and swelling of nearby gums. Another sign that you will need root canal is when you chew there is a severe ache in a particular tooth, and there is a persistent pimple on your gums.

Once the dentist diagnosed that you do need root canal, prepare yourself for some time in the dental chair.  Don’t worry about the pain. Even though common belief pegs root canal treatment as painful, the pain you are experiencing before you sit on that fateful dental chair hurts more than the treatment itself.  Modern technology has allowed this dental procedure to be painless, and it will feel like a normal dental filling procedure.

The term root canal come from the procedure itself where in canals of your tooth’s root will be cleaned. 

After cleaning your teeth, the root canal procedure will begin.  The nerve and pulp of a tooth will be removed. The pulp is a soft tissue found under the dentin, which is the hard layer and white enamel of your tooth. The pulp needs to be removed as bacteria will multiply within its chamber.  If not treated, the swelling may extend to other tooth and even to the other parts of the face, neck, and head. What more, bone loss and a tooth hole may occur.

An endodontist operating on his patient. (photo from wikipedia)

The root canal procedure does not end there. Afterwards, your tooth will be disinfected and cleaned.  Then the tooth undergoing root canal treatment will be filled and sealed with gutta-percha, a rubber like material.

After the root canal procedure, the restored tooth will be like your other tooth.  You can chew with it, you can chomp off an apple, and eat whatever. Root canal cost depends on the severity of your tooth problem. 

Dr. Cecilia Lontoc DMD is one of the best dentists. For more information or to schedule your dental checkup, please call (310) 782-6155  or visit our website at

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Support for Oral Cancer Patients

Patients often feel a sense of relief after beginning treatment. At last you are doing it, battling the cancer cells in your body. Here are some notes on how you can cope better.

Shove away all the negativity. Some say that 100 per cent intentions create a hundred per cent result. This is your life, and your life is priceless. This on-going battle with cancer you have right now is the way that you will prove this.  Be able to laugh at yourself, and see the (black) humor of your condition.

Statistics show that about more than 43,000 Americans have been diagnosed with oral cancer. Within a year about 81 per cent of those who has had oral cancer treatment have survived. This is a large number, and where would you think would you fare? Always believe that you are part of this large chunk of first year survivors.

Photo from google

Take it one day at a time. Being completely cancer free is a journey.  It does not happen in an instant wherein with one treatment of oral cancer you will be healed already. This is a self-transformational journey that will challenge and measure your strength.  Take it one day at a time. The results you have now may not make you satisfied, but in another day, another week, or another month the results may be staggeringly successful. Commit yourself to have that fighting spirit as you reach the end of your goal being cancer free.

Prepare yourself for post treatment check-ups. Follow-up treatment for oral cancer is important. Even when the cancer is removed, there might be a chance for the disease to recur. Patients who have had oral cancer have a high chance of having developing cancer in their head and neck. Dental checkups will help ensure that your body has responded well with the treatment that you chose. Let your doctor inspect your mouth regularly and continue on visiting the dental office.

Choose the right medical team. Make sure that your Dentist and his comrades of other medical professionals know how you feel about your illness. Choose a doctor who communicates well and can answer whatever question you may have.

Find the right dental team (photo from google)

Talk about it. Talk to people who matter to you.  Talk to people who you know will listen to you with all their heart. Talk to a counsellor, a clergy man, your family and your friends. There are also support groups found online. Letting it all out may make it easier. This is the kind of support that oral cancer patients need.

If you are a family member or a friend of someone who has been diagnosed with oral cancer remember that there are no set rules for your support. The best thing you can give is yourself. Prepare yourself by arming yourself with knowledge about oral cancer. Make flexible plans for the future, ask permission from the patient, and be humorous about everything.  Also remember that you and the patient has shared wonderful moments that are not related to cancer, best to recall these and other hobbies. 

Dr. Cecilia Lontoc DMD is one of the best dentists. For more information or to schedule your dental checkup, please call (310) 782-6155  or visit our website at

6 Types of Oral Cancer

In 2011, more than 13,000 people in the US have been diagnosed with oral cancer. This is a rough estimate from the American Cancer Society.

Oral Cancer begins in the gums, tongue, the floor of the mouth, and lips. Note however that there are many types of oral cancer, knowing which one you are diagnosed with will help greatly in your oral cancer treatment and action plan.

Photo from google

Below are the types of oral cancer:

Squamous cell carcinoma.  More than 90% of oral cancer conditions begin in the oral cavity and oropharynx; these often develop to squamous cell carcinoma. Squamous cell carcinoma is a common form of skin cancer that progresses in the outer layer of the skin.  There are tissues on your mouth and throat that are lined with abnormal cells in a scale like way.

Verrucous carcinoma.  Another form of squamous cell carcinoma, verrucous carcinoma is where the cancer cells form an oral cavity tumor. The good thing with verrucous carcinoma is that it seldom spreads to other parts of your body, however it attacks the tissue where it all began making the tumor bigger.

Minor salivary gland carcinomas. There are three common types of major salivary glands on each side of your face.  The parotid gland, found in front of your ears, is where about 7 out of 10 tumors begin. The submandibular gland, found below the jaw, gives smaller tumors. The most frequent type of minor salivary gland cancer originates in the sublingual gland, which is found under the floor of your mouth. Often there are salivary glands that are too minute to the bare eye that is why a lab test maybe needed.

Lymphomas.  This type of oral cancer grows within the lymph tissue. The cancer cells distresses white blood cells called lymphocytes. Be wary, as this type of cancer affects your immune system; as the lymphatic system is part of our immune system.

Leukoplakia and erythroplakia. These are non-cancerous conditions where in abnormal cells may be found in your mouth or throat. These are often a warning sign of cancer and can turn serious. These conditions develop into a different type of cancer. Best to have a biopsy or tests to establish if the cells are indeed cancerous. Twenty five percent of leukoplakia are precancerous while 70% of erythroplakia have been deemed as cancerous.

Benign oral cavity and oropharyngeal tumors.  A benign tumor is non-cancerous as it is unable to attack neighbouring cells and tissues. With a surgery the tumor may be removed, however, there may be benigh lesions. 

Dr. Cecilia Lontoc DMD is one of the best dentists. For more information or to schedule your dental checkup, please call (310) 782-6155  or visit our website at