The Complete Dental Implant Guide

If you suffer from missing teeth, you likely feel self-conscious and uncomfortable, especially when eating, talking or smiling. Beyond those issues, having missing teeth can also lead to oral health problems, such as speech problems, facial structure changes, and difficulty eating. Rest assured that dental implants can help. An implant procedure can provide you with a tooth replacement that looks, feels and functions just like your natural tooth, and gives you lasting confidence in your smile.

What are dental implants?

Dental implants are permanent tooth replacements that can be used to replace one missing tooth, several missing teeth or all teeth. They are essentially metal posts or frames that are surgically positioned into the jawbone beneath your gums. Once in place, the dentist can mount replacement teeth onto them.

What is the process like?

The process for implants is unique to each patient, as different requirements may be needed. The process typically begins with a complete dental exam, which may include X-rays and molds of your mouth. Dr. Barnett will work closely with you to create a customized treatment plan, taking into consideration the number of teeth needing to be replaced and the condition of your jawbone.

The first step in treatment is to drill a hole in the bone and place the implant in that space. Pell City Dental Center offers IV sedation and is one of the only dental practices to offer this. After the implant is placed, there is a recovery period that takes place, which allows for the natural bone to bond with the implant.

The second procedure consists of opening your gum to expose the implant. Dr. Barnett will then remove a protective screw from the implant and replace it with a metal healing cap. The healing cap looks like a metal rod, sitting above the gums where your tooth once was. This allows for the gum to heal properly around the implant.

The last procedure is restoration and is typically scheduled 2-3 weeks after the second procedure. This is where you will begin the process of having your crown, bridge or denture made. Each dental restoration is custom made to fit your smile comfortably and aesthetically.

What are the benefits of dental implants?

  • They are natural looking
  • They are long-lasting and durable
  • They offer a permanent solution to missing teeth
  • You are able to eat all your favorite foods with confidence
  • They improve your oral health
  • You will feel proud to show off your smile again

How much do dentures cost?

Implant dentistry fees can be confusing because there are so many options depending on specific needs/wants. Pell City Dental Center is currently offering a single implant special for $999!
Don’t let another year go by without restoring your smile. Today is the day, and Pell City Dental Center can help. For more information about the benefits of implant dentistry, and to schedule your implant consultation, please call or visit us soon.

Have more questions about dentures and if they are right for you? Call Pell City Dental Center today at 205-473-0044!


Your Insurance May Cover Dental Sealants

Dental sealants can do miracles for protecting your molars from cavities. Many people get oral sealants and love them, and yet many others do not. One of the reasons that many people don’t think about getting oral sealants is because they believe their insurance won’t reimburse them. Will your insurance cover the application of dental sealants? Read on to find out.​

While we can’t say for sure that all insurance companies reimburse the cost of oral sealants, it’s been our experience that many do! Insurance companies want you to be healthy, and dental sealants are very effective tools for enhancing oral health in the molars. The greatest way to find out for sure whether your insurance company covers the cost of oral sealant application is to call them. We’re very familiar with speaking with insurance companies, so if you need any help, please feel free to ask us. It never hurts to ask, but your pearly whites may suffer if you don’t ask! There’s lots of good to be done for your teeth with dental sealants to let the chance to fade away because you didn’t find out whether your insurance company covered the application costs.​

Please reach out to Pell City Dental Center PC at 205-884-2370 now to arrange and appointment for dental sealants in Pell City, Alabama, with Dr. Scott Barnett.


The American Dental Association Helps Consumers Find Quality Oral Care Products

Brushing your teeth each morning and night, while also remembering to thoroughly floss your teeth and gumline once each day forms the basis for a consistent oral hygiene routine. Yet the simple acts of brushing and flossing might not prove sufficient for preventing cavities and periodontal healthy problems.​

Indeed the quality of the oral care products used by you and your family can weigh heavily in the overall effectiveness of your oral hygiene practices. Some oral product manufacturers can even overemphasize the effectiveness of the items they provide in order to boost sales.​

To better help you identify the highest quality oral care products, the American Dental Association provides a series of guidelines, recommendations, and informational tools to help consumers reduce their chances of suffering an oral health condition.

This includes their Seal of Acceptance program which involves testing and researching submitted oral hygiene products to ensure they meet high standards for safe and effective use in a daily oral hygiene routine.​

If an oral hygiene product earns approval, the manufacturer can print the ADA’S logo on their packaging.

You should also note that the American Dental Association also maintains a comprehensive index of approved products on their website. This is designed to help you conveniently research oral hygiene products.

If you live in the Pell City, Alabama, area and you have an oral hygiene concern, you should call 205-884-2370 to schedule a dental checkup with Dr. Scott Barnett and the team at Pell City Dental Center PC’s dental offices.


Are There Alternatives to Flossing?

There are a number of important things you need to do if you’d like to keep your mouth healthy. For instance, you may know that you’ll need to floss your teeth every day. Sadly though, many people struggle with flossing for a variety of reasons. For instance, some people have a hard time flossing because their hands aren’t steady, or because flossing triggers their gag reflex. Fortunately, there are flossing alternatives you can consider.​

Toothbrushes can’t clean very effectively between your teeth. So if you don’t floss, you can’t prevent plaque buildup between your teeth.This can lead to inflamed gums, and eventually to gum disease. Gum disease can also lead to a number of serious problems, including tooth loss, consistent bad breath, and loss of supporting bone structure.​

Fortunately, if you struggle with traditional flossing, there are alternatives you can consider. For instance, water floss can be extremely useful in place of traditional wax floss. As you may know, this tool sends a guided stream of water that can help you remove the plaque and food particles from your teeth. Furthermore, water picks can be useful because they come with several attachments, allowing you to be as comfortable as possible. Floss picks are another option you can consider.​

If you struggle with flossing for any reason, we invite you to contact Pell City Dental Center PC at 205-473-0044. Dr. Scott Barnett and our team can answer any questions you have and help you decide how to floss most effectively and comfortably. We’re excited to hear from you soon!


How Effective Is Your Flossing?

Your daily tooth care is vital because the attention you give to your smile will enhance the other steps you take to improve your oral health. You can’t enjoy the beautiful smile you want if you have developed tooth decay or gum disease. Effective flossing helps keep dental issues at bay and develop a more attractive smile.​

When you choose to floss is for you to decide; you can floss before or after brushing but be sure to rinse your mouth after to flush away any lingering particles. Many patients prefer to floss right before bed because they are done eating for the night.​

Flossing efforts remove stray food particles and plaque buildup from areas around the teeth and gums that a toothbrush can’t access. To ensure your flossing is as effective as possible, ask yourself if you are following these steps:​

-Pull out an 18-inch strip of floss and wind it around your middle fingers, creating about an inch-long section to floss with.
-Use a fresh, clean section for each tooth and wrap the used floss around your fingers as you work.
-Start with your top teeth and insert the floss between teeth, sliding it up and down against each tooth. Remember to floss the back of the teeth.
-Create a U-shape around each tooth with the string to floss around your gums.​

While brushing and flossing daily are very simple, they are vital to your oral health. If you have questions about your dental health or are due for your next dental cleaning, please give Pell City Dental Center PC a call at 205-473-0044 today. Our dentist and team at our office in Pell City, Alabama are happy to help you maintain your beautiful smile!


Should You See Your Dentist Only Twice a Year?

Seeing your dentist twice a year for exams is necessary to keep tooth decay and gum disease from invading your smile. Removing tartar is something only your dentist can do using professional tools. Along with brushing your teeth at least twice a day for two minutes, and flossing daily will help you maintain a healthy smile.​

However, sometimes you may notice unusual activity, or there are other circumstances which might necessitate seeing your dentist in between visits. Let’s look at why you might want to call your dental team.

· Pain: Any swelling or pain in the neck, mouth, or face.
· Gums: Bleeding, puffy gums that indicate inflammation.
· Tooth problems: Missing teeth or staining on the teeth that make you embarrassed to smile.
· Previous dental work: Any dental work in the past can develop issues, so if a fillings, implant, denture or crown is acting up, see your dentist.
· Medical conditions: A long-term disease like heart disease, diabetes, or HIV or eating disorders means you should see your dentist to keep an eye out for problems.
· Pregnancy: Your mouth changes when you are pregnant, making you more vulnerable to issues like gum disease.
· Issues: If it hurts to chew or swallow, stay on a soft food or liquid diet until your dentist can check it out.
· Dry mouth: Feeling perpetually thirsty, or having a dry mouth is not normal.
· Tobacco use: Regularly using tobacco (smoking, chewing, etc.) exposes you to higher oral risks.
· Jaw pain: Chronic pain when you open or close your mouth, chew, or wake up after sleeping should be addressed.
· Oral Lesions: Sores in the mouth lasting ten or more days may need to be checked out.​

For questions or concerns about your smile, please call 205-473-0044 and speak to a member of our dental team. Our dentist, Dr. Scott Barnett at Pell City Dental Center PC in Pell City, Alabama looks forward to helping you with all your oral care needs.


What Can Be the Cause of My Tooth Pain?

If you’re experiencing tooth pain, you’re probably wondering where it’s coming from. Oftentimes, this pain can be a symptom of a little or major dental problem. In a simple situation, a piece of food or a foreign object can be stuck between the teeth or in the gums. In a complex situation, one of these problems could be causing your pain:​

-Tooth damage: When you damage a tooth or a dental restoration, there is a good chance you could experience a toothache. If you suffer a broken tooth or restoration, it’s best to save the pieces and take them with you to your dental appointment.

-Tooth decay: When a cavity forms, it causes extreme pain that won’t just go away. This is because bacteria have attacked and damaged your tooth. It’s important to get the cavity treated as soon as possible. Your dentist can restore the tooth with a dental filling (for a simple cavity) or a dental crown (for a major cavity).​

-Tooth infection: When you don’t fix a cavity, it spreads and harms the sensitive layers that lie beneath the outer shell of the tooth. Then, it infects the tooth and permeates even more discomfort. It’s important to schedule an appointment immediately so your dentist can do what he can to restore the tooth. Typically, oral surgery is necessary.

If your tooth pain lasts longer than two days, it’s best to contact Pell City Dental Center PC at 205-473-0044 and schedule an appointment with your dentist, Dr. Scott Barnett. Our dental team also encourages you to contact our office if you have any questions about how to identify the cause of tooth pain in Pell City, Alabama. We look forward to hearing from you!


Getting Ready for Your Braces

At some point, your dentist may recommend that your child get braces. And if your smile could use some improvement, you may want to bring up the subject with the dentist yourself. Getting braces is a big step, and here are some things to consider before you get started.​

First, your dentist will need to give you a thorough exam, complete with dental x-rays. Afterward, you and the dentist will discuss which option is best for you. You may need braces that are comprised of brackets that are bonded to the front of your teeth. There are also brackets that your dentist can bond to the backs of your teeth; and a third option that consist of a metal band around your teeth. Depending on your age and your needs, you may be a candidate for a system such as Invisalign®.​

A few days before your the big day, schedule an appointment with your dentist for a cleaning so that your teeth are free of plaque. On the day of your appointment, brush and floss your teeth. These simple steps will make your appointment go faster.

If you receive metal braces, you may have some discomfort over the first few days. You may find it difficult to eat. If that is the case, stick with soft foods for a few days. Your braces may irritate your mouth, and your dentist will provide you with dental wax to relieve the discomfort. A topical or over-the-counter-pain reliever may also help.

You will need to spend a little more time brushing and flossing with your braces on. You should rinse your mouth before and after you brush. Start with brushing at the gumline, then from the gums down to the tops of the brackets, and then up from the gumline to the bottoms. Afterward, brush the wire. Flossing is very important for maintaining your braces. If you have problems flossing around your dental work, try using a water flosser or a floss threader.

If it is time for you or your child to get braces, you should call 205-473-0044 to make an appointment with Dr. Scott Barnett at Pell City Dental Center PC in Pell City, Alabama.


The Best & Worst Halloween Candies

During the week of Halloween, Americans consume a shocking 90 million pounds of candy. The reason candy is harmful to your teeth is that bacteria in the mouth burn the sugar, which creates an acid. The acid then dissolves tooth enamel, which is the cause of cavities. Read on for the best and worst candies.

The Bad Candy:

  • Chewy candy – These are one of the worst candies to eat for your teeth. Because of their stickiness, the sugar often lingers and sticks around in your mouth, which gives them more time to cause tooth decay. On top of that, some candies are sticky enough to pull out a filling, bridge or braces bracket.
  • Sour and citrus candy – These candies not only contain high levels of sugar, they also contain acid, which can eat away at the enamel of the teeth, leaving them even more vulnerable to cavities.
  • Hard candy – Eating hard candy can cause your teeth to crack or break and should be avoided. Also, hard candies stick around in your mouth for longer and expose your teeth to the sugars for a longer period. This is a recipe for cavities as extended contact with sugar can weaken and destroy the enamel.

The Good Candy:

Milk chocolate – Chocolate is one of the safest bets when it comes to consuming candy. This is good news as Americans spend $1.9 billion on chocolate each Halloween. The reason chocolate is a safer option is that it washes off your teeth more easily than other types of candy, making it less destructive to the enamel.

Dark chocolate – This is an even healthier option than milk chocolate as it contains less sugar. It also contains a flavonoid called epicatechin, which has been shown to slow tooth decay and also reduce cholesterol. Dark chocolate also contains polyphenols, which are naturally occurring chemicals that help control bad breath.

Sugar-free gum – Chewing gum assists in increasing the flow of saliva, which washes away food particles and neutralizes the acids in your mouth. Opt for a sugar-free gum sweetened with xylitol. When xylitol is present, bacteria loses the ability to stick to the tooth, restricting cavities from forming.

For Halloween this year, you don’t have to avoid candy altogether; just try to stick with chocolate and avoid hard, sour or chewy candies. Remember to brush your teeth twice a day, and remember to clean between your teeth with floss to keep your enamel strong and your mouth healthy.


Everything You Need to Know about Dentures

Whether you have dentures, know someone who does, or are considering them, there is a good chance you have questions. What’s important to know is that if you are missing teeth, dentures are a viable option for restoring your smile’s look, feel and function. The quality of dentures is constantly improving, too, allowing for better fit, increased comfort, and a more natural look than ever before.​

What are dentures?

Dentures are a removable, restorative solution for those missing one or more teeth. There are two types of dentures: complete and partial. Complete dentures replace all of the teeth in a full dental arch and partial dentures replace multiple missing teeth when you still have some remaining natural teeth. Dr. Barnett and the team at Pell City Dental will work with you to determine the best plan of action if you are considering dentures.​

What is the process like?​

The process for dentures is unique to each patient. However, the process usually begins with teeth being extracted. Which teeth and how many will depend on whether you are receiving a complete or partial set of dentures. Pell City Dental is one of the only dental practices offering IV sedation for the extraction process, which will help keep you calm and comfortable. Your mouth will need some time to heal so your gum is able to return to its permanent shape after the swelling has subsided. Once that has happened, an impression of your mouth will be taken to guide the making of the dentures. Dr. Barnett will work with you to select the tooth shape and color (shade of white) you want for your new dentures.​

At Pell City Dental, patients approve all dentures before they are processed – one of the only practices to do this – which saves you time and money. After you approve your dentures, they will be created. Once created, you will have your initial fitting and Dr. Barnett will make all necessary adjustments to ensure maximum comfort. You may need additional appointments later to fine-tune any areas of soreness.​

How do I care for my new dentures?

The first step to taking care of your dentures is to make sure they are taken out of the mouth every night and placed in a cold glass of water. You can add a mild cleaning solution to the water if you would like, but it is not necessary. Your dentures need to be brushed as if they were your real teeth, and this should be done before you put them back in your mouth. Make sure you clean your dentures over a bowl or towel, as they are fragile and can break or chipped if dropped. Regular visits to Pell City Dental will still be required to ensure optimum oral health.​

How long will my dentures last?

As time goes on, the shape of your mouth changes causing your dentures to become loose and you may have difficulties chewing. It is important to attend regular check-ups so your dentist can notice the need for replacement sooner than later and before any irritation occurs. How long your dentures last also greatly depends on the quality of your dentures. Pell City Dental offers multiple denture options such as Geneva 2000™, premium, deluxe, temporary and ultra-section dentures.​

Dentures can be a great option for patients looking to restore and complete their smile. Pell City Dental will work with you to create a customized treatment plan to enhance your mouth and keep it healthy for years to come.

Do you have more questions about dentures and if they are right for you? Call Pell City Dental today at 205-473-0044!