Calm Your Dental Anxiety With IV sedation

Do you put off your dentist appointments because of anxiety? You’re not alone. 15% of Americans avoid the dentist due to fear of dental treatments, including routine cleanings. We don’t want you to stop taking care of your teeth or avoid important dental treatments that can improve your oral health. That’s why we offer IV sedation, or “twilight” sedation, to help you have a relaxing and comfortable dental experience.

A good candidate for IV sedation is someone who:

  • Has strong fear or anxiety of going to the dentist
  • Had a bad dental experience in the past
  • Has strong aversion to the smells and sounds of a dentist office
  • Has a sensitive gag reflex

With IV sedation, or intravenous sedation, you have a stress-free and pain-free dental appointment and will be fully awake throughout the procedure.

IV sedation is a safe and effective option that is:

  • Fast acting
  • Puts you in a deeper state of relaxation then oral sedation or laughing gas
  • Leaves you conscious throughout the procedure, but you will have no memory of it
  • Allows you to respond to the dentist during your procedure
  • Greatly reduces gag reflex, which can be an issue for some people

Prior to your dental procedure, you will be administered anxiety reducing medicine through an intravenous drip. Although you will be highly monitored by our team, you won’t need medical assistance to maintain adequate breathing or your heart functioning as in done under general anesthesia. You will need an adult to drive you to and from your appointment. We’ll allow you to leave once we feel it safe for you to do so.

We are happy to discuss IV sedation as an option for your next dental appointment. We’ll go through your health history and answer any questions you may have. Please, don’t avoid another dental visit out of anxiety when you don’t have to. Your comfort is important to us, and we are here to help you.

We Love Helping You Get Healthy!

Earlier this year we were able to diagnose and treat a patient who was suffering from jaw pain. She had seen three different professionals, but none of them understood her problem. After visiting our office, she kindly added a review of her experience to Google. Read on to learn how we were able to help.

I know you can get so busy that you may put your own dental health on the back burner. Sometimes, you might overlook or tolerate signs of trouble — sore or bleeding gums, a tooth that may be sensitive to hot liquids, a bite that isn’t quite right — until it becomes a problem you can’t ignore. It happens. I want to encourage you not to postpone dealing with these issues because catching problems early can save you pain, time, and frustration. The old saying “a stitch in time saves nine” is extremely relevant when it comes to dental care. It’s never too early to take care of your teeth!

Many people suffer from migraine headaches, jaw pain, pain in the neck or face, and poor sleep quality. They may also experience problems with their bite and have difficulty closing their mouths comfortably. Without realizing it, they could be suffering from a condition called Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMD). This condition involves the temporomandibular joint that connects your skull to your lower jaw. Treatment can be very effective in providing relief, but it requires a provider with knowledge of the disorder and the skills required to develop solutions unique to the individual.

If you, a member of your family, or a friend is experiencing symptoms like those I mentioned that are associated with TMD, or any other kind of dental problem, we would be honored to be of service in finding a solution. Providing you with the dental care you need is what we look forward to! Please contact my office to schedule an appointment for a consultation.

All the best,
Dr. Britt

High-Tech Dental Tools Are “Routine” in Our Office!

At Dentistry by Angela Britt, our mission is to help our patients improve and maintain their oral health. One of the most important things we do to achieve that goal happens every time we see you, because that is when we are able to observe and diagnose any problems. We have prepared through education and experience to recognize those problems — and we have invested in current technology to enhance this ability. Read on to learn a bit about some of the “high-tech” diagnostic tools you might see us use during one of your appointments!

Dental Loupes

We need flawless vision when we do our visual examinations — we don’t want to miss a thing! That is why we often wear a dental loupe when we look into your mouth. These devices magnify and illuminate so we have an excellent view of your teeth and oral surfaces.

Digital Radiographs (X-Rays)

Digital x-rays have helped improve diagnostics and provided our patients with images they can relate to. There is also less radiation exposure. Finally, we can now easily store and share images when necessary.

Digital Camera for Patient Education

Using digital photography, we can keep a visual record of your oral examination and share what we see with you. This allows you to make decisions about your oral care with much more information than ever before.

Intraoral Camera

This small camera can be used for planning treatment as well as during treatments. It produces high-quality images that help detect oral health issues and assist with images during restoration procedures.

TRIOS Intraoral Scanner

This scanner produces 3D images to provide us with even more information. Handheld, the scanner is fast and returns excellent images.

Myotronics (Bite Evaluation Computer)

This tool assists in the diagnosis of more complex cases where teeth are misaligned and the upper and lower teeth fit together improperly.

VELscope (Cancer Detection)

Used to assist in finding abnormalities, including cancer, in the mouth, the VELscope uses a blue-spectrum light that makes the soft tissues in your mouth fluoresce. The glowing patterns of healthy tissue change in areas that have been affected by disease, allowing them to be identified, sometimes before they are visible to the naked eye.

ProMax® 3D Imaging

We can correct involuntary movements that may have been caught in the static image with this system. We can also image jaw movement in real-time. This system is safer for patients due to low-dose radiation, and it produces images of all the facial/oral structure.

We are devoted to not only diagnosing any problems you may have, but also to providing the treatment you need to resolve those problems. If are in Brunswick, Georgia, or the surrounding area, and you are concerned about any dental issues you or a family member may be experiencing, please contact our office today to schedule a consultation. We look forward to seeing you!

Restore Beauty and Health to Your Teeth With Dental Crowns

One of the most successful restorations we can provide is a dental “crown.” The team at Dentistry by Angela Britt can answer your questions about crowns. Customized for your unique teeth, your crown encloses the entire tooth. The shape, color, and even the size are designed to resemble your own teeth. Delivering an aesthetically pleasing crown that allows you to chew correctly in comfort requires time, patience, and skill. When done well, they will be visually attractive and your teeth will be healthier.

Types of Dental Crowns

Crowns are constructed from metals, including gold, stainless steel, and metal alloys. Other materials may be used with the metal, including porcelain, ceramic, and resin.

Metal crowns typically wear longer than other materials and don’t chip. Stainless steel crowns are prefabricated and are often used as temporaries to be replaced with the “permanent” crown when it is finished.

The porcelain in a porcelain-fused-to-metal crown can be matched to your existing teeth to provide a more natural appearance. Because the porcelain can wear from chewing and can also be chipped, they are not as long-lasting as a metal crown.

Crowns can also be completely ceramic. These crowns can look the most natural and are used for both back and front teeth.

When Crowns Might Be Used

Crowns are often the restoration of choice in many situations.

  • Teeth that have internal fractures can suffer from the pressure of chewing.  Placing a crown over such a tooth helps redistribute the pressure, perhaps preventing the need for additional procedures.
  • Large fillings put pressure on the weakened surrounding tooth structure. Replacing large restorations with a crown can help prevent the remaining tooth from cracking and requiring additional procedures.
  • Teeth become worn from chewing, and the worn cusps contribute to fractures. Covering the tooth with a crown can alleviate the pressure and prevent further damage.
  • Root canal procedures save your tooth from an extraction. We may suggest that a crown then be placed over the tooth to protect it from pressure cracks caused by vigorous chewing.
  • Crowns can provide a cover for your dental implant.
  • Teeth worn from grinding can be restored to look natural and more aesthetically pleasing.
  • Damage from accidental trauma or severe decay can be fixed through restorative crowns.
  • Crowns that are carefully made can compensate for gaps between teeth to provide a more beautiful smile.
  • Discolored and misshapen teeth can be restored to provide you with a natural, beautiful smile.

Crowns are one type of restoration available for creating your perfect smile. Deciding which restorations are the best for your unique situation requires a thorough understanding of your needs. Please call our office to schedule an appointment. We serve patients in Brunswick, Georgia, and the surrounding areas.

Our Exciting New Additions Bring You a Better Experience

As your dentist, providing you with treatments that solve your unique health issues is my purpose, and doing so safely and effectively with the most current proven methods is my passion. Technology in dentistry is constantly evolving and improving, and I am happy that I can share the benefits of that technology with you. Today I would like to share some information with you on two of our most recent additions.

MLS & Mphi5

One technology we use is the MLS laser. The MLS (Multiwave Locked System) is an effective tool for use in treatments including extractions, orthodontics, temporomandibular disorder (TMD), surgeries and more. The MLS laser combines and synchronizes two therapeutic wavelengths — a continuous wavelength and a pulsed wavelength. Used together, they provide greater anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects while reducing the potential for any thermal damage. A few advantages of this cutting-edge laser include:

  • Reduced swelling caused by bruising and inflammation
  • Reduced pain sensation
  • Accelerated cell repair
  • Faster healing, wound closure, and reduced scar tissue

We have been very pleased with the MLS, and I am happy to tell you that we recently purchased a new handpiece for the laser. Using the new Mphi5 handpiece will help us treat a targeted area more precisely and will allow treatment to a larger area in less time. This means an overall improved experience for you, which is important to us.

Planmeca Promax® 3D Mid Imaging

The next time we need to capture images for one of your treatments, you will be introduced to our new imaging unit, the Planmeca Promax® 3D Mid. This unit provides high-quality images that allow us to see the structures of your teeth, jaws, tongue, and face in incredible detail. The improved detail enhances our ability to identify and plan the best approach to treatment for restorations, implants, orthodontics, and much more. Additional advantages:

  • Low-dose imaging
  • Real-time tracking of jaw movement for TMD studies
  • Ideal for imaging patients with braces

You will enjoy having your dental images taken using this unit. It is open for your comfort and the ease of operation helps our team members complete the studies we need for your treatment in an efficient, fluid manner.

Please feel free to ask any team member for more information about any of the equipment and processes we use for your treatment. It is our pleasure to share with you.
I look forward to seeing you here at your next visit. Contact my office to schedule an appointment.
Best,
Dr. Britt

Why Suffer From Jaw Pain?

Woman with jaw pain

You wake up to excruciating jaw pain — again. You think about what your day has in store and cringe. How will you interact with co-workers, clients, and even the Starbucks barista when it physically hurts you to smile? If this scenario is familiar, you may have a problem with your TMD.

The temporomandibular joint connects your lower jaw to your upper. When this joint becomes inflamed or irritated, it results in TMD, or temporomandibular joint disorder. For some, TMD pain can be debilitating, preventing them from enjoying social situations. The following symptoms are the most common:

  • Facial swelling
  • Jaw clicking or popping sounds
  • Ear, neck, or shoulder pain
  • Ringing of the ears or dizziness
  • Jaw pain, particularly when talking, chewing, or yawning

The problem with TMD is that many of the symptoms can be explained by other health conditions. You don’t inherently suspect a misaligned jaw when you have chronic shoulder pain.

TMD can be caused by a number of things, from arthritis of the temporomandibular joint to trauma such as whiplash. Whatever the cause, Dr. Angela Britt can use Physiologic Dentistry identify the source of your pain. The technology we utilize, such as Myotronics (bite evaluation system), allows Dr. Britt to view how your facial muscles, jaw joints, and soft tissues work together. This information is then used to develop a personalized treatment plan that will finally put an end to your pain. Types of treatment include:

  • Physical therapy and stretching exercises to strengthen jaw muscles
  • Occlusal appliances such as splints to place your jaw in the proper position or mouth guards to prevent jaw clenching and grinding

There is no need to suffer from TMD symptoms when help is just a phone call away. If you live in Brunswick, Georgia, or the surrounding communities, contact Dentistry by Angela Britt to schedule a consultation. Your smile and your comfort matter to us.

Surgery With Water? You Bet!

Smiling couple and the waterlase logo

At Dentistry by Angela Britt, one of the things we love about dentistry is that it’s NEVER boring. Between the personalities of our patients, the variety of conditions we treat, and the ever-changing world of dental technology, we have to stay on our toes. One particular piece of technology that we’re excited about is our WaterlaseⓇ Surgical Laser. Why should YOU care about the Waterlase? Because it’s yet another way that we are able to enhance your experience when you visit.

What Is Waterlase?

Waterlase combines the powers of water and lasers to safely and comfortably perform dental procedures. Like most other lasers, Waterlase allows us to treat you with greater comfort and improved healing time. The other benefits of Waterlase include:

  • It works not only on hard tissue like teeth, but soft tissue like your gums. This means we can do tissue lifts, remove hyperpigmentation (darkening) of the oral tissues, and perform periodontal procedures.
  • It’s practically painless! As the laser cuts through the tooth’s surface, a constant stream of water prevents the heating that can cause pain.
  • It lacks the elements that induce anxiety. Hate the sound of a drill? Can’t stand needles? These are often cited as sources of dental anxiety; with Waterlase, they are sometimes unnecessary.
  • It saves you time. Many procedures that require the use of Waterlase can be completed the day of diagnosis. This means YOU won’t have to take the time to return to our office or see a specialist for your procedure.
  • It’s precise! Laser technology allows us to remove less of the tooth’s surface and focus only on the exact area requiring treatment. This is another reason that Waterlase is less painful than other treatment methods.
  • It’s safe. Our tools and equipment are always safe and sterile, but because the Waterlase never actually touches your tooth, there’s zero risk of cross contamination.

Using state-of-the-art technology is just one of the ways we are able to ensure that your visit is as expedient and comfortable as possible. If you’d like to experience our patient-centered care and live in or near Brunswick, Georgia, we’d love to be part of your healthcare team. Contact our office today to schedule a consultation.

New Year, New Teeth, New You

cross-eyed redhead girl

The beginning of a new year is the perfect time to take stock in our lives. How many times have we put our needs on the back burner in order to take care of a friend or loved one? How often have we run ourselves ragged trying to do too much? I propose that this year, you make your happiness and health — including dental health — a priority. If you have recently experienced an extraction or having been battling with your dentures, then treat yourself to dental implants. Dental implants as a treat? Let me explain.

How You Can Benefit from Dental Implants

While there are a number of solutions for tooth loss, I almost always recommend dental implants. Why? They offer benefits that no other tooth replacement option can, such as:

  • Permanence — Whether you’re having a single implant placed or an entire mouth full, each implant is permanent. As your implants heal, they fuse with the natural bone in your jaw. This not only makes them permanent, but the most stable tooth replacement option available.
  • Freedom to eat — Because of the stability implants offer, you are free to eat what you wish. Denture wearers struggle with eating tough foods or getting seeds and other food particles stuck between their gums and dentures. With implants, you can enjoy a crisp apple, filet mignon, and fresh berries to your heart’s content.
  • Easy care — Implants are individually placed, which means you can clean between and around them just as you would natural teeth. Simply brush and floss as I recommend and follow through with your scheduled dental exams. No overnight soaking required.
  • Improved health — Unlike some other dental prosthetics, implants prevent further damage from occurring to your remaining teeth, gums, jaws, and facial structure. When a missing tooth is not replaced, the remaining teeth will shift. This shift can adversely affect your bite, compromise your jaw alignment, and even distort the shape of your face. Dental implants prevent all of this from occurring
  • Improved self-esteem — Dental implants look and function like real teeth. If you weren’t happy with the smile nature provided, I can finally give you the one you’ve always dreamed of. Enjoy the newfound confidence that comes with having a beautiful smile. Take care of yourself; get the grin you deserve and then share it with the world.

The next time you come in, let’s have a conversation about how dental implants can improve your life. Whether you commit to treatment or not, make sure that you place yourself somewhere at the top of your priority list this year.

Fondly,
Dr. Britt

The WandⓇ: Almost Magic

At Dentistry by Angela Britt, we take great pride in incorporating technology in our practice. Dental technology advances daily, and if those advancements can benefit our patients in any way, we want to learn more. One of our favorite technological tools is our dental wand. This award-winning wonder allows us to anesthetize patients more comfortably and efficiently than ever before. As dental professionals, it’s easy to be enthusiastic about state-of-the-art equipment, but we think you’ll be excited to learn more, too.

Among the many benefits of the Wand are:

  1. Improved precision. With traditional anesthetic injections, the area surrounding the affected tooth becomes numb. The Wand allows us to anesthetize a single tooth! How does this enhance your dental experience? You won’t leave our office with a numb face.
  2. Improved comfort. Occasionally, patients are more anxious about receiving an anesthetic injection than they are about the procedure itself. The Wand delivers anesthesia with less discomfort than a traditional syringe injection. It also offers more sustained numbness, which means that you will remain comfortable throughout your entire treatment. Greater comfort for you also means less anxiety. That’s a win-win in our books.
  3. Improved efficiency. If you’ve ever needed treatment on multiple teeth, you may have been required to visit your dentist to treat each tooth. Because The Wand allows us to numb a single tooth at a time, it also allows us to perform multiple treatments in one visit. This saves YOU time, and who couldn’t use more of that?

Everything we do is done with patient comfort in mind. The Wand has been invaluable in easing patient anxiety, increasing their comfort, and instilling their confidence in our practice. If you live in Brunswick, Georgia, or the surrounding areas and would like to experience the type of treatment that we offer, contact us today to schedule a consultation.

Oral Cancer screening is very important, here is why

happy man giving his happy son a piggy back ride

Did you know:

  • One person every hour of every day dies of Oral Cancer in America
  • Oral cancer has become a leader in cancer among men
  • Oral cancer has increased in young adults
  • Tobacco users are at higher risk
  • Exposure to the HPV virus increases your risk

Most people are not aware of potential risks; however, when detected early, the survival rate for oral cancer is very high.
The VELscope exam takes about two minutes, involves no pain or inconvenience, and is completely safe. Abnormal fluorescence patterns aid in detecting unhealthy tissue that sometimes cannot be seen with the naked eye, such as viral, fungal and bacterial infections, inflammation from a variety of causes, cancerous lesions and salivary gland tumors. Annual comprehensive oral cancer screening for all of my patients is very important to me. Early discovery has many positive impacts when you consider cancer; potentially longer life spans and reduction of treatment.

VELscope is a word that you will hear in our treatment suite.

Let me See or Not See you today!

Sincerely,
Angela

Dr. Angela Britt

TMJ Disorder (TMD)

man with hands at his jaw in pain from TMJ

What can cause TMJ (TMD)?

  • grinding or clenching your teeth, which puts a lot of pressure on the joint
  • movement of the soft cushion or disc between the ball and socket of the joint
  • stress, which can cause you to tighten facial and jaw muscles or clench teeth
  • injury to your jaw, joint, or muscles of your head and neck
  • a bad bite or poorly positioned teeth

It has been recognized that approximately 90% of the pain in the body comes from muscles. Since the muscles of the head and neck are all related to or affected by the bite or jaw relationship, it is critical to consider muscle comfort in the assessment, diagnosis and treatment of patients who suffer with bite issues. Many individuals do not realize that muscles play an important role in dentistry.

The traditional dental education still focuses on the relationship between the upper and lower teeth combined with the jaw joint position but completely misses evaluation of the muscles. Why hasn’t anyone caught it before? Dentistry is about more than just your teeth!

When the muscles of the head and neck and the teeth are not in harmony, pain can develop. Symptoms such as headaches, vertigo, ringing in the ears, jaw pain, neck pain, sensitive teeth, just to list a few, can be associated with TMJ disorder. There are a few options available. The most effective is a bite computer, it is used to determine the optimal bite position and an orthotic fabricated to reposition the jaw joints, thus decompressing the joints and alleviating the pain. This method determines the cause of the pain while providing a solution for symptoms.

Dr. Britt wants to help you build the perfect pain free bite!!! Hurry and call 912-264-5550 to schedule an appointment for you to achieve the optimal bite!

Keep On Smiling,

Dr. Angela Britt

For Fabulous, Function and Fit call Dr. Britt today to schedule your appointment!

Let your holidays be bright with our Zoom! whitening

close up of mouth before and after teeth whitening Zoom!

Your smile is the way you greet the world. And while you have many options for whitening your teeth, your dental professionals have access to the most powerful, professional-strength whitening and can ensure your treatment is safe and your results are outstanding.

Zoom! got its name from its speed. It’s considered one of the fastest teeth whitening systems, and can fit easily into the most hectic of schedules.

This procedure is simple. The Zoom! whitening gel is applied, the Zoom! light is turned on and the whitening process begins. The light and gel work together to gently penetrate your teeth, breaking up the stains and discoloration.

  • The gel is applied for 3 fifteen minute sessions using the Zoom light
  • During this time you can relax, listen to music or watch TV
  • Upper and lower whitening trays are completed in the office for at home touch up whitening
  • Initial whitening gel is provided for you to use
  • Finally, you go home with your brighter, whiter smile

Take your first step to get you on your way to your Zoom! and contact us today!

Here’s to a bright smile,

Dr. Angela Britt

The Wand

dentist hand holding The Wand

The syringe is the #1 cause of stress in the dental office and the biggest source of anxiety and fear for the patient. It can be painful to be uncomfortable or stressed.

Most people who have had a bad experience with injections think that needles sting because the skin is pierced, but this is usually not so! Most often, the sting was caused because the anesthetic was forced in too quickly. Obviously, it is possible for the dentist to control the speed with a standard syringe, but the idea of the Wand is to take out the “hand force”. This can be very reassuring for people with previous bad experiences.

What is it?
The Wand
The Wand Single Tooth Anaesthesia (STA™) System is the first computer-controlled local dental numbing machine. One injection will ensure easy, fast acting numbness. This means that the injection is guaranteed to be slow and steady and therefore comfortable.

What does the Wand look like?
image of The Wand Single Tooth Anaesthesia (STA™) System

Is painless numbing up possible?
With The Wand it is!
It simply doesn’t look like a syringe! Welcome to new technology

dentist hand holding The Wand

People with needle phobia describe it as the “Magic Wand”!

What are the advantages?

  • Higher Patient Comfort
  • Reduced Patient Anxiety
  • Faster numbing onset and sensation recovery
  • Looks non-threatening and almost like a pencil

I welcome dental chickens, there is nothing to be ashamed of.
Call the exceptional dentist Dr. Angela Britt now and she will make your dental experience dream come true.

912-264-5550
For Fabulous, Function and Fit call Dr. Britt today to schedule your appointment!

Diabetes and Gum Disease

close up of person's gums being checked by dentist

A healthy mouth is important for your whole body. This is especially true for patients with diabetes. Presently, there are over 26 million people with diabetes in this country.

Studies have shown that people with diabetes are 2 times more likely to get moderate to severe gum disease. Having diabetes makes the body more susceptible to bacterial infections. Diabetes decreases the ability to fight germs that invade the gums, causing more bone loss. People with diabetes have a poor healing response.

Gum infections can cause high glucose levels to be elevated and at times uncontrolled. High glucose levels in saliva help plaque thrive on your teeth. Plaque is a film of bacteria that develops within hours of eating and releases acids that cause tooth decay. Plaque that is not removed can harden into tartar. When tartar collects, brushing and flossing can become difficult and may even be uncomfortable. This can lead to periodontal disease, a chronic inflammation and infection of the gums.

Warning signs of periodontal disease:

  • Red, swollen, tender gums
  • Bleeding gums
  • Gums pulling away from the teeth
  • Bad breath and/or bad taste
  • Teeth become loose and/or start to separate

Regular professional cleanings, examinations and routine gum testing is so important. Eating a healthy diet, taking medications and insulin as directed by your physician can help you manage the oral complications of diabetes.

Treatment for gum disease is not like it once was. In my office treatment is non-surgical. The cleaning is done gently to reach below the gum where the bacteria hide. Medication is applied for comfort. Laser technology is also used to kill the bacteria and promote tissue attachment healing. With some patients I find the need for Perio Protect Trays. These trays assist in the delivery of medication in the areas of bone loss. Treatment has been very successful with stopping the progression of this disease. Gum disease is not curable, but with maintenance, we achieve improved oral health!

We look forward to seeing your smile!
Dr. Angela Britt