Our Blog

Electric Toothbrushes vs. Regular Toothbrushes

September 22nd, 2021

Convertible or sedan? Downtown or suburbs? Electric or manual toothbrush? As life decisions go, it’s certainly not choosing your next car, or deciding where you want to live. But, even when you are selecting a toothbrush, it helps to make a list of the pros and cons of the contenders before you make that final selection.

  • Efficiency

The most important factor in choosing a toothbrush is finding out which model works best to eliminate bacteria and plaque. And studies have shown that, used properly, both electric and manual toothbrushes do a great job of removing plaque. Some electric models can reach the backs of teeth and the gumline more easily, some manual head designs work better for your individual mouth and teeth, so your particular needs should dictate which style of toothbrush you use. Talk to us about the best methods to brush with your preferred toothbrush, and we’ll let you know if one type of toothbrush or the other might work better for you.

  • Health Considerations

Brushing too energetically can actually harm teeth and gums, causing sensitivity and damage to the enamel and gum tissue. An electric toothbrush should provide a continuous brushing motion without needing any pressure from the brusher. This might be the model for you if you have a too-vigorous approach to brushing, or sensitive teeth and gums.

An electric toothbrush can also be more efficient for older and younger brushers, those with limited mobility, and those with health conditions or injuries that make brushing with a regular toothbrush more difficult.

  • Cost

An electric toothbrush is not a one-time investment. You should change the removable head as often as you change your manual toothbrush (every three to four months, please). But this cost is offset if an electric toothbrush is more efficient in removing your plaque, easier to use, or even if you just prefer it to manual brushing. If you find that you brush better and more often with an electric toothbrush, the added expense is well worth it.

Whichever brush you decide on, the most important part of the brush is the person holding it! A regular appointment with your toothbrush for two minutes of thorough brushing in the morning and two in the evening, daily flossing, and regular visits to our office for checkups and cleanings will keep your teeth healthy and strong no matter which toothbrush you choose.

Questions about your toothbrush choices? Don’t hesitate to ask Dr. Ron Shiver at our Valdosta office.

Fractured Tooth? When You Should Call Your Endodontist

September 15th, 2021

No one looks forward to dealing with a cracked or fractured tooth, but, fortunately, there are treatments available. Fractures take a variety of forms, from cosmetic annoyance to tooth-threatening, so if you suspect your tooth is injured, it’s important to see Dr. Ron Shiver right away.

If you have suffered any kind of serious fracture, we are uniquely equipped to help save your tooth. Endodontists have two or more years of advanced training after dental school, and we specialize in treating the inner tooth, which contains the blood vessels, nerves, and connective tissue found in the pulp chamber and root canals. Endodontists save teeth that would otherwise be automatic candidates for extraction.

When should you call Dr. Ron Shiver? We identify five types of cracks and fractures, and your options will be different depending on which type of injury your tooth has suffered.

  • Crazing fractures

These are the small, shallow cracks that appear over time in the exterior enamel. They are often a cosmetic concern more than a medical one, and usually require no treatment. If the cracks are very bothersome, whitening treatments or even veneers can take care of the problem. If there is any pain in the tooth, it is caused by something other than a surface crack in the outer enamel.

  • Cusp fractures

When the cusp of a tooth has broken off, treatment will depend on the degree of damage. The chewing surface of the tooth can be treated by your dentist with a crown or even a filling, depending on the extent of the cusp loss. Cusp fractures rarely extend to the tooth’s pulp, but, if they do, a root canal will probably be necessary. This is a good time for an endodontic evaluation, because endodontists specialize in root canal procedures.

  • Cracked Tooth

A crack which begins in the tooth crown and travels toward the root should be treated as soon as possible. If the damage has extended to the pulp, a root canal will be necessary, and a crown will protect the tooth from further damage and help prevent the crack from growing. If the crack is not caught in time and extends below the gumline and into the root, the prognosis for the tooth is much less favorable.

  • Vertical Root Fracture

In this type of fracture, a crack begins in the root of the tooth and can gradually spread toward the crown. This is one of the more serious types of tooth fractures, because it can be difficult to detect and often has no immediate symptoms. By the time you feel pain, it might be because the bone and gum tissue surrounding the root have become infected. If the fracture is limited, endodontic surgery can sometimes save the tooth by removing the damaged root, but extraction is often necessary with more serious fractures.

  • Split Tooth

This type of fracture goes all the way through the tooth, splitting it into two distinct segments. These sections cannot be put back together, but, depending on the type and location of the break, Dr. Ron Shiver may be able to save a portion of the tooth with endodontic surgery.

When you are treated for a broken bone, over time the bone will knit together. A crack in a tooth, however, does not heal. If you have suffered any kind of traumatic dental injury, it’s important to visit our Valdosta office as soon as possible. With proper treatment and restoration, even a tooth that has suffered a serious fracture might be saved.

How Can Calcified Roots Affect Your Root Canal Procedure?

September 8th, 2021

Endodontists are specialists in treating the inner tooth, and perform root canal procedures every day. They have completed years of additional advanced studies after dental school to diagnose and treat both common root canal issues and more complicated endodontic problems. Calcified root canals are one such complication that make a visit to Dr. Ron Shiver the right choice for your professional care.

What’s involved in a typical root canal procedure?

After the area around the tooth is numbed, Dr. Ron Shiver will make an opening in the crown to allow access to the pulp inside. Very small instruments will be used to clean the inner tooth and remove dead or dying pulp tissue. The area inside of the tooth will be shaped, filled, and sealed, a process which can take one or more appointments. A temporary filling might be placed in the tooth to prevent bacteria and food from entering the site before a permanent seal is created. Dr. Ron Shiver can consult with you as to whether a crown or other restoration is best to protect your tooth after root canal treatment.

How do calcified roots develop?

Calcium is an essential mineral because it keeps our enamel strong, protecting the delicate pulp tissue inside the tooth. Sometimes, though, calcium deposits will partially or completely block a root canal. This build-up might occur in a canal as a response to injury or infection. It’s also a process that occurs naturally over time, and because of today’s advances in dental care, people are keeping their natural teeth much longer. This calcification can become a problem when you need a root canal procedure.

Why are calcified roots a problem?

It’s very important that we have access to every root, and to the entire length of every root, for the root canal procedure to succeed. If calcium deposits block all or part of a canal, even delicate instruments will have difficulty reaching all of the pulp tissue inside the canal. To make matters even more complicated, calcified roots can be hard to locate. Dealing with calcified canals requires experience and skill.

How can an endodontist help?

  • Endodontists have sophisticated imaging technology and microscopes, which, together with their experience in the anatomy of the inner tooth, help them locate even difficult-to-detect roots and their branches.
  • Endodontists have the skill and training to precisely and patiently clear the blocked roots.
  • Specifically engineered endodontic instruments have been designed to clean and shape narrow, calcified canals.
  • Finally, if the root canals are not treatable through the crown of the tooth, endodontic surgery can allow access to the canals that regular non-surgical methods cannot.

If you have calcified roots, making a root canal more difficult, schedule an appointment at our Valdosta office. We are experts in root canal procedures, whether common or complex, and experts in saving teeth.

Labor Day: Our favorite holiday to rest!

September 1st, 2021

Labor Day, celebrated on the first Monday each September here in the United States, is a holiday devoted to the American working community. The purpose of the holiday is honoring the country's workers and their contributions to the strength of our country as a whole.

How Labor Day Started

There is actually some debate as to the origins of Labor Day. It is uncertain whether Peter McGuire, a cofounder for the American Federation of Labor, or Matthew Maguire, who was the secretary of Central Labor Union of New York, had the great idea. However, the Central Labor Union's plans were what launched the first Labor Day in America.

The First Labor Day

The very first Labor Day was celebrated on September 5th, 1882. The Central Labor Union then held annual celebrations on September 5th for what they called a working man's holiday. By the year 1885, the Labor Day celebration had spread to many different industrial areas, and after that it began spreading to all industries in the United States.

Labor Day Today

Labor Day today is a huge United States holiday during which we honor the country's workers with a day of rest and relaxation or a day of picnics and parades. This holiday is truly one to honor the many people who work hard to contribute to the economic well-being of our great country!

Our team at Ron L. Shiver DMD Family & Restorative Dentistry hopes all of our patients celebrate Labor Day, and every holiday, safely and happily. Whether you stay in the Valdosta area, or travel out of town, have fun, and don't forget to brush!

Back to Top
preserve protect reserve badge
Contact Us!
call email