Dentistry/Gums

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Question
Hello, I go to the dentist every six months for a cleaning, exam, and x-rays. In between visits, I brush after each meal - morning and at night (If I am at work, I'll floss and then rinse my mouth out with a mouthwash after lunch.). I use Plax (mouthwash to loosen plaque before brushing), ProNamel-Sensodyne (toothpaste that protects enamel from acids\prevents sensitivity), ACT mouthwash (flouride rinse), and Crest Clinical Mouthwash (to prevent gingivitis). I also use ClinPro (a prescription toothpaste from by dentist that has flouride and tri-calcium phosphate).

I went to the dentist on Friday and had a good check-up. The dentist said I did not have any cavities. However, my teeth are sensitive. I was told that I have a little gum recession at a prior visit - 6 months ago. I experience sensitivity when I eat fruit (just started about two weeks ago)- like a grape or blackberry - and with temperature change (cold) and salt! I mostly feel it along the gumline. This is worrisome. How can I not have a cavity when my teeth are sensitive? I think my dentist would tell me if I did. What does it mean when a white filling has changed colors - like a light grey color? Also, I have a sinus infection. I understand that causes sensitivity too.

Answer
Dear Shelby,

It sounds like you're a pretty compulsive brusher. I hope you're using a soft bristled toothbrush. Anything firmer will cause your gums to recede more quickly and expose more sensitive root surface.  Root surfaces contain tiny nerve fibers which often become more sensitive when receding gums expose them.  Here are my rules for you. Morning rinse with Plax. Soft Brush with   Sensodyne.  Rinse with ACT.  Night same as morning. Then rub Sensodyne into the gumlines of your teeth and leave it there while you sleep. Do this every day for three weeks, then let me know how you're doing.

Usually when a white filling gets dark, it indicates decay. Sometimes it's stain. Sometimes leakage. Ask your dentist to take a closer look.  

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Howard Finnk, D.D.S., P.A., CEO

Expertise

I am a Family, Implant and Cosmetic dentist. I will answer questions on any aspect of dentistry and matters relating to the smile, gums, jaws and lower face. Member American Dental Association, Florida Dental Association, Broward County Dental Association, and Atlantic Coast District Dental Association. I have served as District Council Member of Alpha Omega, as well as serving for one term as its President. I am also a member of The Vedder Honors Society, Broward Dental Research Clinic, and Mount Sinai Hospital Guild. I have served as a Volunteer for Project Dental Health and The Tri-County Dental Health Council.

Experience

Having attained over 30 years of clinical experience in private practice in Michigan, in 2001 I was re-certified by taking and passing the Florida State Dental Board Examination. After moving to Florida, I spent nearly 10 years re-honing my skills while working as an Associate Dentist for several large dental groups. In September, 2004, I was appointed Adjunct Clinical Professor at Nova University's College of Dental Medicine. I am certified in placement of Mini Dental Implants, and I am Director of The Florida Implant Center (floridaimplantcenter.com). On March 1, 2010, at the age of 62, I began all over again by buying a dental practice near my home in the Fort Lauderdale area. As sole owner and Chief Dental Officer of the new Nob Hill Dental Center (nobhilldentalcenter.com), I can now carefully provide dental care to patients who care, all within a caring, joyful environment. Over my career lifetime, I have provided thousands of diagnoses, fillings, crowns, bridges, root canals, periodontal treatments, TMJ therapies, partials, dentures and extractions, and dozens of implants for my patients. The only aspect of dentistry with which I have very little experience is orthodontics.

Organizations
American Dental Association, Florida Dental Association, Broward County Dental Association, Atlantic Coast District Dental Society, Vedder Honors Society, Broward Dental Research Clinic, Alpha Omega Alumni Association, and American Association of Dental Implantologists. Formerly, American Academy of General Dentistry, Michigan Dental Association, Macomb Dental Society, Detroit District Dental Society, Tri-County Dental Health Council (a charitable dental care organization)

Publications
"How To Save Money At The Dentist" Going to press soon.

Education/Credentials
Bachelor of Arts and Sciences in Psychology from Wayne State University Doctor of Dental Surgery from University of Detroit College of Dentistry Adjunct Clinical Professor, Special Needs Department, Nova Southeastern University College of Dental Medicine, Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Awards and Honors
Membership in The Vedder Honors Society

Past/Present Clients
HIPAA rules do not allow me to post this information.

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