Do Dental Implants Hurt?

Smiling older black couple with the man behind the woman giving her a hug

At Paris Mountain Dental, we’ve been lucky to see it time and time again: Dental implants have the power to change peoples’ lives. We’ve seen a patient go from being afraid to open their mouth because of the gaps in their teeth to showing off their radiant smile any chance they get. We’ve also seen how someone who had difficulty with chewing and speaking because of missing teeth regain the full function of their mouth for more ease with day-to-day activities.

That being said, there are still plenty of people out there who may be interested in getting dental implant surgery but are nervous at the thought that the procedure might hurt. Our expert dental team is here to clear up any confusion!

What the Procedure is Like

Let’s start with the dental implant procedure itself. Yes, getting a dental implant does involve getting surgery, but that doesn’t mean it’s going to be painful. We take great care to ensure your comfort every step of the way. We apply a local anesthetic before getting into the procedure so that the area is numb and the most you might feel is pressure. At our dental office, we also have additional calming sedation options available like DentalVibe, which uses vibrations to make injections virtually pain-free.

Post-Dental Implant Surgery

After you’ve received a dental implant, it is possible that you’ll feel some soreness in the treatment area. This is completely normal as the numbness wears off. The good news is that this lessens over time, and it should be gone in just a couple of weeks. We can also prescribe you with pain medications to help with any potential discomfort.

After your recovery period, you shouldn’t experience any more pain, and if you do, it may be because of an infection or another health concern. In the rare chance you experience that, we would bring you in to remedy the situation.

All in all, many people find that this short amount of possible discomfort is worth being able to reclaim their smile. If you’re still concerned about whether dental implants hurt, we invite you to visit our Travelers Rest dental practice for an in-person consultation so we can answer all of your questions and ease your concerns. Call or email us today to set up a visit!

Contact us to learn more about dental implants.

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Dental Bridges vs Implants: What are the Differences?

Artistic rendering of a dental implant showing the implant in the jawbone on the left and the implant-supported crown on the right

LEFT: The dental implant has melded with the jaw bone. RIGHT: The implant is fitted with a dental crown.

If you’ve recently lost a tooth, then you’re probably weighing your different replacement options. Thankfully, you have a few treatments to choose from. Two of the most popular solutions are a dental bridge or a dental implant. Here’s a rundown of the main differences between the two so you can get a better idea of which is right for you.

Structure & Procedure

A dental bridge is an attachment that’s secured to the teeth next to your gap in order to stay in place. A dental implant is a post that goes into your gums, mimicking the shape and position of a natural tooth. Because of these differences, the way each is placed is also different. When getting a dental bridge, you may need to get dental crowns on top of the nearby teeth for the bridge to attach to. On the other hand, getting a dental implant requires surgery so that the titanium post can be embedded into the jawbone. This is also why the entire implant procedure can last significantly longer than getting a bridge.

Artistic rendering of a lower jaw supported bridge.

Lower jaw supported bridge. Image by Authority Dental under CC 2.0

Effect on Other Teeth

When you get a bridge, it’s important that the teeth on either side of the missing teeth are strong and healthy to support the artificial tooth that will go between them. When you get a dental implant, your surrounding teeth won’t be affected. Although you will need to have healthy gums and a sufficient amount of bone in your jaw to support the implant placement. If you don’t, you may need to get an additional procedure called a bone graft so that your implant can be successful.

Cost & Lifespan

A dental bridge is a more cost-effective option than a dental implant. Both procedures require a dental professional to make a custom artificial tooth. The latter, however, is a more complex process due to the surgical component. It’s important when considering the cost of a dental bridge versus a dental implant to think about the long-term investment. A dental bridge may be cheaper initially but it generally lasts for 5 to 15 years before needing a replacement. A dental implant can last as long as 25 years.

Find Answers to Your Questions in Travelers Rest

As you can see, dental bridges and dental implants both fulfill the same purpose of replacing missing teeth. If you’re still on the fence about what’s right for you, let the Paris Mountain Dental team help. There are some differences between them, from the procedure to the price. And if the price is your main concern, we offer numerous payment options. We’d be happy to answer any questions you might have!

If you’d like to learn more about dental bridges, implant support dentures or dental crowns, give us a call and we’ll schedule a consultation.

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The Advantages of Clear Aligner Therapy

Trio of images showing the progress of clear aligner therapy

Are you are contemplating straightening your smile? Consider using Clear Aligner Therapy to do it. At Paris Mountain Dental we’re proud to offer clear aligners to our patients along with a number of options to make it affordable. Here’s some information about how it works and why people love it.

How Clear Aligners Work

Clear aligner therapy straightens your teeth using clear, plastic aligners instead of the traditional wires and brackets. We will create custom aligners that fit snuggly over your teeth. Computer software accurately identifies what must be done to correct your particular misalignment issues. Then, the aligners apply gentle pressure to the areas that need straightening and push your teeth into place. You need to wear the clear aligners for between 20 and 22 hours every day. Every few weeks you will swap out your aligners for new ones. The new aligners will continue to move your teeth further into place once the older set have done their job. You’ll receive numerous aligners at one time so fewer visits are needed to the office. Wait, we’re getting ahead of ourselves talking about the benefits. . .

The Advantages Of Clear Aligner Therapy

One of the greatest benefits of clear aligners is that they are virtually invisible. This eliminates the self consciousness that people, especially adults, sometimes feel while straightening their teeth. Additionally, the aligners are removable! Therefore, you can take them out for short periods of time. No more embarrassment if you have a special event like a job interview, a wedding or a family photo. You can remove them while eating so food doesn’t get stuck in them. Plus, you can take them out to thoroughly brush and floss your teeth. Maintaining good dental hygiene is easier. Also, although you may feel a little pressure when you switch to the new set of aligners, they don’t hurt. Sometimes wearers of traditional braces experience quite a bit of discomfort when they get their braces put on or tightened. Lastly, aligner therapy often takes less time, depending on your straightening needs.

If you think you may be a good candidate for Clear Aligner Therapy, give us a call and we’ll schedule a consultation.

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What Are Dental Implants?

Smiling brunette woman in dental chair waiting for a dental implant

Missing teeth make it harder to eat, talk, and smile with confidence. Therefore, if you’re looking for a natural-looking durable solution, dental implants may be the perfect option for you! Read on to learn about this popular tooth replacement solution.

What Are Dental Implants?

A dental implant is composed of a solid metal post, either titanium or zirconia that is surgically implanted into the jawbone. This post fuses to the jawbone to become a strong and supportive replacement tooth root. It is then topped with a restoration to provide a fully-functioning and natural-looking smile. This could be a dental crown, dental bridge, or dentures. The number of replacement teeth and dental implants you need will determine your specific treatment plan.

Dental Implant Procedure

First, a consultation at Paris Mountain Dental will determine if you are a good candidate for the procedure. Our expert team will review your medical and dental history and ask questions about your oral health habits. This is necessary in order to evaluate whether your gums and jawbone are strong enough. Once you are approved, expect the process to take several months. During the recovery period, called the osseointegration phase, the metal post fuses to your jawbone. Once it is securely integrated, the restoration will be affixed to the implanted post.

Mini Dental Implants

At your consultation, we can help you determine whether denture stabilization with mini dental implants is the right solution for your missing teeth. This is a cost-effective way to keep dentures from shifting or falling out. Mini dental implants are less invasive to place than traditional implants. Therefore they are great for patients with less jawbone density.

Caring For Dental Implants

Caring for your implants is like caring for your natural teeth. Excellent oral health habits are necessary. You want to keep any natural neighboring teeth healthy, your gums strong, and your jawbone from deteriorating. Brush twice daily for two minutes each time, floss every day and visit us for routine checkups. Good oral health is also supported by a balanced diet. Drink plenty of water and avoid tobacco products.

Implants in Travelers Rest, SC

We have a number of flexible payment options. Don’t let budget worries keep you from improving your smile. So, contact Paris Mountain Dental today to schedule your consultation!

We would be thrilled to find the perfect tooth replacement treatment for your unique dental needs.

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How Often Should I Replace My Toothbrush?

pink and white toothbrush in front of a black background surrounded by bubbles

Image by Ulrike Leone from Pixabay

Have you ever looked at your toothbrush and wondered when was the last time that you bought a new one? Here we’ll give you some information about replacing your toothbrush.

How Often Should I Replace My Toothbrush?

The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends that you change your toothbrush about every three to four months. If you are a more aggressive brusher, you should change your toothbrush sooner if you notice that the bristles are frayed. This is because frayed and worn bristles won’t brush your teeth as thoroughly. Kids often need to replace their toothbrush more often due to more aggressive brushing. Additionally, if you’ve been sick recently, it’s important to replace your toothbrush once you are healthy again. This is because the bristles on your toothbrush don’t kill bacteria in your mouth or protect you from getting sick again.

How Can I Maintain My Toothbrush?

You want to make your toothbrush last as long as possible so you don’t have to constantly be replacing it. The ADA suggests rinsing your toothbrush under tap water after you’ve brushed your teeth in order to wash away any saliva or toothpaste that is left on the bristles. You should also store your toothbrush in a vertical position so that the bristles are positioned well to air dry completely. Be sure not to store your toothbrush near the toilet because that can invite bad bacteria and germs to live on the bristles. Additionally, do not store the toothbrush in a closed container because that can cause bacteria to build up.

What Kind of Toothbrush Should I Use?

If it’s time to replace your toothbrush, you may be wondering if you should get a new kind of toothbrush. There are two types of toothbrushes: manual and electric. There are pros and cons for each choice. For example, manual toothbrushes are easily portable and inexpensive and you are able to have complete control over the pressure and motion of your brushing. One disadvantage is that it can be harder to thoroughly brush those harder to reach places with a manual toothbrush. With electric toothbrushes, you can get a very thorough cleaning without doing much of the work yourself. However, electric toothbrushes are more cumbersome and can be expensive. At the end of the day, you should use whatever toothbrush you feel most comfortable with.

If you have any other questions about replacing your toothbrush or anything else related to your oral health, please give us a call.

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Foods to Avoid with Braces

Smiling teenage boy with short curly black hair and braces is wearing a dark green jacket and standing in front of a horizontal paneled fence

Alright, we get it. Braces aren’t exactly fun. They take a lot of work, over a lot of time. But here’s the great thing, when you finally get those brackets off, your smile will be show-stopping. So while you might be dreaming about your favorite forbidden snack, please be patient. Don’t jeopardize the beautiful results you’ve been working so hard to achieve.

Foods to Avoid with Braces

There are a number of foods that are totally off limits if you’re sporting traditional metal braces. Please stay away from sticky and/or chewy foods like gum, candy, and bagels. Crunchy snacks like nuts, popcorn, and pretzels should also be avoided. You should never chew on ice since it could chip a tooth, but especially not with braces. And avoid biting directly into fruits and veggies like apples and carrots–cut them up into small, bite-sized pieces before enjoying.

Know the Consequences

Not convinced? Keep reading! You have to know what you’re getting yourself into if you break the rules. Remember, not only are you investing a lot of time and energy into wearing your braces, they are a financial investment too. Some foods should be avoided because they are hard to clean up after, but if you chew on hard, tough foods, you risk damaging the braces. For example, you could break a wire or need to replace a bracket. Setbacks like these can prolong the process, and even alter the effectiveness of the procedure, providing results that differ from those desired.

What Can I Eat?

We know, it’s tough to swear off treats like pretzels and popcorn, but with braces you can actually eat most foods. Stick with soft foods. Foods that are cooked, blended, or pureed are typically safe bets. Granted, some things are a little messier with braces. You’ll want to immediately clean your teeth after eating so chunks of that juicy hamburger with onion, tomato and lettuce aren’t a part of your smile!

Orthodontics at Paris Mountain Dental

We’re here to tell you that the result you’ll get from treatment with braces will be worth the small temporary sacrifices you’ll have to make. If you think you’re ready for a straighter smile, give us a call to schedule a free orthodontic consultation.

If you want more advice about which foods to avoid with braces or how to care for your teeth while wearing braces, contact us at Paris Mountain Dental. We’d love to hear from you.

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5 Common Foods That Can Crack Teeth

There you are, just sitting and enjoying your snack or meal, when all of a sudden you hear a crack and your tooth doesn’t feel so good. We sincerely hope this never happens to you, but it is possible for people to crack their teeth while eating some everyday foods. Here are five of the most common foods that lead to cracked teeth:

1. Hard Candy

There’s no shortage of candies out there and lots of them fall into the hard candy category. Lollipops, jawbreakers, and Jolly Ranchers are just a couple, and we bet you can think of a few more too. When you indulge in one of these sweets, resist the temptation to chew and bite them since they can take a serious toll on your teeth.

2. Popcorn

We’re not talking about savory, buttery, fluffy popcorn. We’re talking about those tiny, hard unpopped kernels. Next time you grab a handful of popcorn, make sure you’re not accidentally about to bite down on one of those little guys because they are hard on your teeth.

Bowl of popcorn next to pile of unpopped kernels

Image by Steve Buissinne from Pixabay

3. Shelled Nuts & Seeds

While your teeth are designed to help you break down the food you eat, you shouldn’t be using them as a tool to open things—even if those things are healthy nuts and seeds. The hard outer shell of pistachios, sunflower seeds, and the like could hurt the outer surface of your teeth.

4. Olives

It’s tempting to dig into a bowl of olives and pop one after another in your mouth. Instead, slow down a bit so that you don’t unintentionally chomp down into their hard pits and crack a tooth. That’s a surprise you don’t want!

5. Ice

Plenty of people enjoy chewing on ice to cool down, or simply because there’s some in their cold drink. But chunky ice is no friend to your teeth, so avoid biting down on it and just suck on the cubes instead.

If you want more advice about which foods are good for your teeth and which you should be wary of, contact us at Paris Mountain Dental. We’d love to hear from you.

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Tips To Protect Your Teeth & Smile As You Age

It’s a fact of life that as you get older, you have to take care of your body a little differently than you used to. Your teeth are no exception to that rule! As the years go on, you can become more at risk of certain oral conditions so it’s important to take the necessary steps to keep your smile in its best condition. Here are some tips to help you protect your teeth as get older!

Avoid Dry Mouth

For many people, getting older means taking more medication. Some medications have dry mouth as a side effect. When your mouth is dry, it can cause chronic bad breath as well as an increased risk of tooth decay since there isn’t enough saliva to clean your teeth. To alleviate dry mouth, drink plenty of water throughout the day. You can also chew sugar-free gum to increase saliva flow.

Minimize Wear & Tear

With daily chewing and biting it’s unavoidable that your teeth will undergo some wear and tear over the years. To make sure your teeth last as long as possible, try not to chew on hard things like ice or your pen. If you notice that you’re grinding your teeth at night, get a night-guard made so you can prevent further damage.

Try an Electric Toothbrush

Using a manual toothbrush can become more difficult if you develop a condition like arthritis. To ensure that your teeth are still getting properly cleaned, consider switching to an electric toothbrush. You’ll be able to more easily grip the brush without sacrificing the quality of brushing. Plus, if you have one that signals when you should move to the next section of your mouth or when your recommended two minutes of brushing time are up, it’ll be easy to remember exactly how long you’ve been brushing.

Want more tips for keeping your smile healthy? Contact the Paris Mountain Dental team! We also provide restorative dentistry in case you need some extra help getting your teeth back to a healthy condition.

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What Happens If You Don’t Brush Your Tongue?

Four yellow emoji faces with tongue sticking outFour yellow emoji faces with tongue sticking outFour yellow emoji faces with tongue sticking outFour yellow emoji faces with tongue sticking out

You learned years ago how to brush and floss your teeth but what about your tongue? Plenty of people don’t realize that brushing their tongue should be part of their at-home dental routine. Your tongue is home for lots of different bacteria, and letting the bad bacteria stay there can cause you trouble in the long run. Here’s what can happen if you forget to brush your tongue:

Bad Breath

There are a few different things that can cause someone to have bad breath, but bacteria settled on your tongue is a major one. When you brush the surface of your tongue, you clean away that bacteria and end up with a fresher smelling mouth. Remember to brush as far back on your tongue as you comfortably can since lots of bacteria live back there!

Duller Taste Buds

Since your taste buds are on your tongue, not brushing your tongue can actually affect how things taste. Bacteria and other debris can build up on your tongue’s surface to leave something called a biofilm over your taste buds. That biofilm gets in the way of you tasting things fully. Brush your tongue and don’t miss out on experiencing the real flavors out there!

Periodontal Disease

When there’s bad bacteria on your tongue, it doesn’t just mind its business and stay there. It can spread to other areas of your mouth, which means it can cause bigger problems. One example is periodontal disease, or gum disease, because the bacteria can inflame and infect your gums.

Black Hairy Tongue

No, this isn’t something from a horror film. Black hairy tongue is an actual condition that’s just what it sounds like: a tongue that looks dark and furry. Don’t worry, your tongue doesn’t actually start growing hair. It’s just that the papillae on it get bigger and darker, giving off a ‘hairy’ look. This condition is caused by too much bacteria in your mouth, and while it may be harmless, it definitely doesn’t look nice. To prevent or get rid of black hairy tongue, take the time to brush away that bacteria.

If you need help improving your oral health, contact Paris Mountain Dental. Our Travelers Rest team is here to look after your smile!

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How Long Do Veneers Last?

If your smile leaves something to be desired, it’s time to fix that. Veneers can be a great option if you’re looking to improve the look and feel of your smile.


woman's smile from dental porcelain veneers

Veneers 101

Veneers are tooth-shaped shells custom made out of porcelain to fit over the teeth. They are used to fix up the smile, solving a variety of common issues including yellow or crooked teeth. When installing veneers, your dentist will remove some enamel, making room and creating a rough surface for the veneers to adhere to. Veneers are attached to the existing teeth using a dental resin. The result will be an incredibly natural smile—a durable set of teeth that won’t stain.

Are They Forever?

Veneers are built to last. Porcelain is strong and durable, much like enamel. But again, like tooth enamel, porcelain can crack. Barring any sort of accidental break, veneers will typically last somewhere in the range of 10 to 15 years. Once that time frame has come and gone, your veneers will either need repair or replacement, depending on the shape they’re in.

It’s All About Care

With great care, you can ensure that your veneers will last as long as possible. Since the veneers are simply covering the natural teeth, oral care should remain a top priority. That means brushing, flossing, and seeing a dentist twice a year, in addition to maintaining a healthy diet and lifestyle habits. In addition to care, if you’re careful you can minimize the risk of wear and damage. Do not bite your nails, never use your teeth to open packaging or rip off a tag, and if you have a teeth clenching or grinding habit, address it before, or soon after, getting veneers.

Top Quality Care At Paris Mountain Dental

Whether you want veneers, already have veneers, or are fine without them, you have the power to control the look and feel of your smile by paying attention to your oral health, and we’re here to help. Feel free to call our office with questions about your care, or to set up an upcoming visit!

To ask our team any questions about veneers or to schedule your visit to our office, contact us today!

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