Common Dental Terms Explained by the Best Naperville Dentist

Best Naperville DentistQ: What is dentin?

Best Naperville Dentist: Dentin is a substance underneath tooth enamel that contains microscopic canals. The term is generally used when dealing with sensitive teeth. When teeth are sensitive, they are negatively affected by common sensations such as hot or cold liquids or everyday activities like chewing food. Dentin is generally protected by the enamel on the exposed area of teeth and by a substance called cementum above the gum line. When exposed due to enamel wear or receding gum lines, it can create hypersensitivity that must be treated via a desensitizing toothpaste, fluoride gel, dental bonding, or root canal.

Q: What is orthodontics?

Best Naperville Dentist: Orthodontics is the medical term for straightening teeth. It typically refers to the use of braces or other dental appliances.

Q: What are wisdom teeth?

Best Naperville Dentist: Wisdom teeth are also called third molars. These are the molars behind the two primary molars and are located in the very back of the mouth. They are often removed because they can negatively affect other pre-existing teeth. Wisdom teeth may also be removed as part of restorative measures or periodontal treatment.

Q: What is malocclusion?

Best Naperville Dentist: Malocclusion simply refers to the misalignment of either the teeth or jaws or both.

Q: Are gingivitis and gum disease the same thing?

Best Naperville Dentist: Gingivitis is actually the beginning stage of gum disease and can be treated before the disease progresses; it is preventable with regular dental cleanings. Gingivitis is in essence when the gums become infected due to toxins and tartar buildup. The gums may become red and swollen and begin to the bleed. Gum disease, depending on severity, may affect the ligaments and tissues of the mouth. It can lead to gum abscess and lost teeth.

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