Common Problems

Tooth Decay
Caries, or tooth decay, is a preventable disease. 

When your teeth and gums are consistently exposed to large amounts of starches and sugars, acids may form that begin to eat away at tooth enamel. Carbohydrate-rich foods such as candy, cookies, soft drinks, and even fruit juices leave deposits on your teeth. Those deposits bond with the bacteria that normally survive in your mouth and form plaque. The combination of deposits and plaque forms acids that can damage the mineral structure of teeth, with tooth decay resulting. Preventing a cavity formation is always the goal, but in the event that you do develop a cavity we have many methods available to restore your tooth both functionally and cosmetically. Treatment options will be discussed with you to help you choose the best method of restoration, based on your individual situation  

Sensitive Teeth
Your teeth expand and contract in reaction to changes in temperature. Hot and cold food and beverages can cause pain or irritation to people with sensitive teeth. Over time, tooth enamel can be worn down, gums may recede, or teeth may develop microscopic cracks, exposing the interior of the tooth and irritating nerve endings. Just breathing cold air can be painful for those with extremely sensitive teeth. There are actually many different reasons that teeth may become sensitive. After an evaluation at our office to determine the cause of the sensitivity, we will discuss the options that are available to treat the cause and the symptoms. We have several methods available in our office to help alleviate sensitivity and will help you to choose the methods that will work best for your specific situation.

Gum Disease
Gum, or periodontal, disease can cause inflammation, tooth loss, and bone damage. Gum disease begins with a sticky film of bacteria called plaque. Gums in the early stage of disease, or gingivitis, can bleed easily and become red and swollen. Another indicator of gum disease is consistent bad breath or a bad taste in the mouth. As the disease progresses to periodontitis, the bone that holds the teeth in place may recede or melt away. In very advanced cases of gum disease, teeth may fall out or need to be removed by a dentist. Gum disease is highly preventable and can usually be avoided by daily brushing and flossing, and routine cleanings. Several risk factors, such as diabetes, smoking, or prescription drug interactions may increase your chance of developing gum disease. Our hygienists are trained to recognize and treat all degrees of periodontal disease. They are also are trained to evaluate your medical history to alert you of conditions that may make you more susceptible to developing gum disease.  The condition of your gums is evaluated at each routine cleaning visit. Proper brushing and flossing, along with routine cleanings are the best way to avoid gum disease.     

Bad Breath (Halitosis)
Brushing and flossing daily helps to prevent the buildup of food particles, plaque and bacteria in your mouth. Food particles left in the mouth deteriorate and cause bad breath. While certain foods such as garlic or anchovies may create bad breath temporarily, consistent bad breath may be a sign of gum disease or another dental problem. Persistent bad breath should be evaluated at our office. 

Canker Sores
Canker sores (aphthous ulcers) are small sores inside the mouth that often recur. Generally lasting one or two weeks, the duration of canker sores can be reduced by the use of antimicrobial mouthwashes or topical agents. Our office has several options available to help treat the discomfort of canker sores.

Orthodontic Problems
Crowded teeth, improperly spaced teeth, and/or misaligned jaws can affect the function of your
mouth, as well as the cosmetics of your smile. Orthodontic problems can result in chewing difficulties, speech difficulties and Tempromandiblular Joint (TMJ) disfunctions or pain. All of these issues can be corrected with orthodontics.  A bite that does not meet properly (a malocclusion) can be inherited. Some types of maloccusion may be acquired. Some causes of malocclusion include missing or extra teeth, crowded teeth, or misaligned jaws. Accidents or developmental issues such as thumb sucking or finger sucking, for an extended time, may contribute to malocclusion. An evaluation of your bite is completed at each routine cleaning visit. There are many options available, for both children and adults, to correct bite problems and build a beautiful, functional smile. Our office will be happy to discuss your treatment options and help you to select the best option for your specific needs. 

To avoid some of the common problems mentioned above, be sure to brush and floss.

Brushing:  Use a toothbrush with soft bristles and a small strip of fluoride toothpaste. When you brush your teeth, move the brush in small circular motions to reach food particles that may be under your gum line. Hold the toothbrush at an angle and brush slowly and carefully, covering all areas between teeth and the surface of each tooth. It will take you several minutes to thoroughly brush your teeth. Brush up on the lower teeth, down on the upper teeth, and the outside, inside, and chewing surface of all of your front and back teeth. Brush your tongue and the roof of your mouth before you rinse.

Brush your teeth four times daily to avoid the accumulation of food particles and plaque:

  • In the morning after breakfast

  • After lunch or right after school

  • After dinner

  • At bedtime

As soon as the bristles start to wear down or fray, replace your toothbrush with a new one. Do not swallow any toothpaste; rinse your mouth thoroughly with water after you finish brushing.
It is important to carefully floss and brush daily for optimal oral hygiene.

Flossing:  For areas between the teeth that a toothbrush can’t reach, dental floss is used to remove food particles and plaque. Dental floss is a thin thread of waxed nylon that is used to reach below the gum line and clean between teeth.  It is very important to floss between your teeth every day.

Pull a small length of floss from the dispenser. Wrap the ends of the floss tightly around your middle fingers. Guide the floss between all teeth to the gum line, pulling out any food particles or plaque. Unwrap clean floss from around your fingers as you go, so that you have used the floss from beginning to end when you finish. Floss behind all of your back teeth.

Floss at night to make sure your teeth are squeaky clean before you go to bed. When you first begin flossing, your gums may bleed a little. If the bleeding does not go away after the first few times, let a staff member know at your next appointment.


Common Problems | FAQ's |    COPYRIGHT  DRS. WADE & SACCOCCIO 
1600 Warwick Ave, Warwick, RI 02889      (401) 732.5570