• 03 AUG 16
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    Top Dental Terms You Need to Know

    Top Dental Terms You Need to KnowEvery industry includes a few terms that the average person might not be familiar with, and dentistry is no exception. If it’s been awhile since your last visit to the dentist, brush up on some dentist lingo so you’re not left in the dark at your next appointment.


    Also known simply as grinding or clenching your teeth when you sleep, bruxism can cause worn or loose teeth, receding gums, cheek irritation, jaw problems, and headaches. Diagnosing bruxism can be tricky since it only happens when you sleep, but wearing a custom night guard made especially for you can put a stop to this unintentional habit.


    A simpler name for this condition is chronic bad breath. Many factors can cause this problem, including eating certain foods, failing to take good care of your teeth, smoking, chewing tobacco and even grinding your teeth. Make brushing and flossing a priority and talk to Dr. Evanson for personalized tips if your halitosis doesn’t dissipate on its own.

    Gingivitis, Periodontal Disease and Periodontitis

    Known collectively as gum disease, the conditions known as gingivitis, periodontal disease and periodontitis are all characterized by chronic gum inflammation. According to eMedicineHealth, nearly 75 percent of American adults suffer from one stage of gum disease or another, and untreated gum disease is a major cause of adult tooth loss.

    Gingivitis is the mildest form, which can be treated and reversed with a thorough cleaning by your dentist and a resolution to take better care of your teeth. However, if left untreated, gingivitis may develop into periodontal disease, which begins to destroy bone and gum tissues that support your teeth. When periodontal disease is left untreated, it worsens into a condition called periodontitis. It’s in this stage of gum disease that tooth loss becomes a real threat.

    Crowns and Fillings

    These forms of dental restoration are used in different circumstances. A dental crown covers an entire tooth, which may be broken, worn, cracked or damaged from tooth decay. It mimics the look and function of a tooth while protecting what’s left of your real tooth.

    A filling is merely a patch for a tooth that has been damaged by decay. The dentist removes the decayed tooth material and fills the cleaned-out cavity with a filling. This restores the tooth’s shape, function and appearance while helping to protect against further decay.

    Amalgam Fillings

    Also called silver fillings because of their metallic appearance, this mixture of silver, tin, mercury and copper is a popular type of dental filling. Amalgam fillings have been used for over 150 years.

    Some people are concerned about the presence of mercury in amalgam fillings, but according to the FDA, the low level of mercury vapor associated with these types of fillings is safe for people ages 6 and older. No clinical studies have ever found a link between amalgam fillings and health problems.

    Veneers and Implants

    If you want to improve the appearance of your smile, dental veneers and implants are two options available from Evanson DDS. Veneers are thin coatings placed on the front of your teeth to correct the appearance of discolored, chipped or slightly crooked teeth.

    Implants are designed to take the place of missing permanent teeth. They feature a small titanium screw that replaces the root portion of a natural tooth, giving it the stability it needs to permanently anchor the implant to your jaw bone. This solution is an option for replacing one or multiple missing teeth.


    A dental sealant is a protective coating applied to the biting surface of the molars. Dr. Evanson offers this dental service for children and teens whose teeth are most susceptible to tooth decay caused by bacteria and plaque settling in the tiny grooved surfaces of the molars. Sealants don’t replace the need for brushing and flossing, but they can make these preventative dental hygiene practices more effective.

    Don’t put off your dentist visit another day! Contact Evanson DDS online or call us at (720) 409-0008 to schedule an appointment.

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