Category Archives: Dentist

Signs and Symptoms of Cavities

No one likes to hear that he/she has a cavity, but the good news is, the sooner it is detected, the quicker it can be fixed. Left undetected, the cavity progressively gets worse and leads to further complications. So, think of it like this, finding the cavity means fixing the cavity.

Let’s start with a reminder of how cavities occur. When we eat foods that have starch or sugar in them, bacteria that are in our mouths use the starches and sugar to create acids. Those acids begin working on breaking down our tooth enamel. Don’t panic! Our saliva is equipped with calcium and phosphate to replace the minerals lost. Fluoride in toothpaste and in water also help, but be careful because repeated contact with those acids result in a cavity.

The following is a list of signs or symptoms of dental cavities. Knowing these signs or symptoms can help you seek dental care immediately rather than allowing the cavity to get worse.


A stain that initially appears as a white spot can mean that minerals have been destroyed off of the enamel on the tooth. At this point, the enamel, with some proper care, can be repaired. If decay continues on the stain, then the spot may become darker in tint; brown or black.


A sudden unexplained sensitivity of a tooth can be serious. If you feel a sudden sensitivity, especially when eating certain foods, then seek out professional dental attention.

Bad Breath

Inexplicable bad breath is another sign that something may be wrong in your mouth. The bacteria responsible for the decay of your teeth are also responsible for bad breath. This sign is not always initially noticeable by you, but friends and family might not always feel comfortable telling you that your breath is unpleasant.


The bacteria causing the erosion of tooth enamel can also create a bad taste. You may experience some disagreeable taste in your mouth as a result of the bacteria breaking down food.


Pain is also a common symptom of cavities and one that should initiate immediate dental attention. The pain can be in the tooth that is decaying or has the cavity, and it can also be present in the jaw.

If you experience any of these signs or symptoms of a cavity for more than a day or two, it is crucial that you seek medical attention from a dentist. Contact us today to schedule your appointment!

Best OTC Medications for Sensitive Teeth

Sensitive teeth can be as big of a pain as stubbing your toe! The dull ache temporary disappears after ibuprofen or Tylenol but is back within the hour. Many factors can contribute to tooth pain and sensitivity such as an acidic diet, a soft tooth core, lack of fluoride, receding gums, or a cavity. For some, this could be a problem as a sugary diet or certain foods will need to be avoided and taken out of the diet completely. Tooth sensitivity that does not go away should be looked at by one of our professionals at Fairfield Dental Arts. If your tooth feels sensitive, the following products can alleviate any pain or discomfort of your sensitive teeth.

SenzAway Tooth Desensitizing Gel

SenzAway provides immediate relief for edible items that are cold, sweet, or hot. One SenzAway treatment will last up to 6 months and can be applied to your entire mouth. The ingredients for this product are Distilled Water, Nitric Acid, Carbopol, and Potassium Binoxalate.

DenTek Instant Pain Relief Maximum Strength

DenTek Instant Pain Relief Maximum Strength temporarily relieves pain that is caused by canker sores, sore gums, toothaches, or cold sores. There are active and inactive ingredients in this product as follows: Carbowax 400, Peppermint Oil, Spearmint Oil, Sucralose, Benzocaine.

Crest Pro-Health Sensi-Stop Tooth Sensitivity Relief Strips

Crest Pro-Health Sensi-Stop Strips provide tooth sensitivity relief. Sensi-Stop Strips are used for only 10 minutes and provide immediate relief and protection for up to one month. The active ingredients for this product are Aqua, Carbomer, Glycerin, Dipotassium Oxalate, Cellulose Gum, Sodium Benzoate, Sodium Hydroxide, and Potassium Sorbate.

Orajel Instant Pain Relief Cream

Orajel Instant Pain Relief Cream provides a fast and effective sensitive tooth and gum pain relief. It states not to use the cream for more than 7 days. The ingredients for Orajel Instant Pain Relief Cream are Benzocaine, Menthol, Benzalkonium Chloride.

Zilactin-B Oral Pain Reliever

Zilactin-B Oral Pain Reliever gives temporary relief from pain that is caused by minor mouth sores and gum irritations, canker sores, brace pain, and denture. The ingredients in Zilactin-B are Benzocaine (10%). Inactive Ingredients: Boric Acid, Hydroxypropyl Cellulose, Propylene Glycol, Purified Water, Salicylic Acid, SD Alcohol 38-B, Tannic Acid.

Always consult your dentist before using any of the above products. If you have severe oral pain, a prescription may be needed. For any other questions or scheduling an appointment, contact us today!

Preventative Dentistry: What Does It Include

In some cases, preventative dentistry performed by a professional at Fairfield Dental Arts is necessary after at home preventatives were not a success. This is to prevent disease, decay, and possible rotten teeth. One of our dentists will perform several different procedures, but a few are more common than most. For instance, cleaning, filling cavities, and teeth whitening. In order to prevent cavities, you will receive a fluoride treatment that is not harmful to you or your teeth, and an x-ray will be performed to make sure there are no problems not visible to the eye. For missing teeth, implants, bridges or dentures may be suggested.

Let’s take a look at more in-depth problems that can be prevented, and sometimes reversed with preventative dentistry. If you are already practicing proper dental care, then you are already preventing or lessening many of problems listed below:

  • cavities
  • gingivitis
  • enamel loss
  • periodontitis

When it comes to preventive procedures, anyone and everyone can benefit. Children would be the ones to benefit the most because they have a chance to develop healthy adult teeth. Oral health is a direct correlation to our health within. When you develop a good dental hygiene routine, you are reducing future disease, aches, and surgeries. Poor oral health can also lead to more serious problems that involve your body’s system. Some of these problems are as follows:

  • diabetes
  • heart disease
  • osteoporosis
  • respiratory disease
  • cancer

Preventive care is extremely important, because having poor oral health can add up costing you more money in the long run. For more information on preventative care and what you can do at home, contact Fairfield Dental Arts today!

How Soda Affects Your Teeth

Most Americans drink soda or some kind of sugary beverage at least once a day. Why? Because they taste good! Foods and drinks that taste good are not always good for your diet, and soda happens to be one of them. Not only does is soda associated with obesity and other common health problems, it’s also bad for your teeth! Depending on the type of soda, various oral complications can arise from use of these sugary drinks.

Teeth Staining

Dark colored soft drinks can leave a semi-permanent stain on the teeth that cannot be removed without a deep cleaning, whitening, or professional help. This discoloration occurs when the soda becomes embedded in the natural structures of the enamel, or outer layer of the tooth.


Soda is high in sugar, and sugar erodes the teeth’s enamel by reducing its hardness. When cavities occur, often times the damage is going deeper than the enamel and hitting the dentin underneath.

Bacteria Growth

The sugars in soda combines with the natural bacteria of your mouth, forming an unwanted acid. This damages the teeth by attacking them. Think again before you take that next sip, because with each one your mouth is under attack!

Even with continuous dental check ups and keeping up with your oral hygiene, it is not recommended to have a high intake of soda. You can help your mouth and your body by choosing alternate beverage options!

If you have questions of concerns on how soda affects your teeth, teeth whitening, stain removal, and more, contact Fairfield Dental Arts today!

The Process of a Root Canal: Problems and Treatments

Experiencing a toothache? Can’t bite or chew normally? Unable to smile due to pain? All of these symptoms can be characteristic of a root canal problem.

Before we begin, a brief understanding of the anatomy of the tooth will be helpful. Inside the tooth—after passing both the white enamel and a hard layer called dentin—exists a pulp chamber, which houses the root canal system and pulp. The pulp, a soft tissue, consisting of nerves, blood vessels and connective tissues, is needed during tooth development; however, after maturation, a tooth can survive without the pulp. Root canal, or endodontic treatment becomes necessary when the pulp becomes inflamed or infected; left untreated, it can cause abscess and further damage to the surrounding tissues and bone.

Endodontic treatment may take a day or two, depending on the condition and severity of the symptoms. Briefly, here are the steps of a root canal treatment:

1. The very first step is to numb the tooth and the surrounding gum area, so the patient doesn’t feel any pain.

2. A dental dam is applied to isolate the tooth being treated. This avoids contamination from bacteria present in the rest of the mouth, including those in saliva; in this sterile environment, a hole is drilled to access the pulp chamber and root canals.

3. The unwarranted pulp tissues are removed; the root canals are cleaned and disinfected with antiseptic and antibacterial solutions.

4. A rubber-like material called gutta-percha is filled into the canals. Since gutta-percha is prepared with adhesives, it essentially seals the canals, preventing further access points for bacteria.

5. A filling is inserted to seal the access hole. Occasionally, a post (metal or extremely sturdy plastic) may be placed in the canals to hold the filling in place for a weaker tooth.

6. Finally, a crown or filling is placed to completely restore and seal the top of the tooth.

A few weeks after the procedure, pain should be non-existent, and tooth restored completely. If pain persists, please see us for a follow up visit immediately!

Can Brushing Your Teeth Too Much Be Bad?

Many of us brush our teeth several times a day. This begs the question of whether or not that may be too much. Is there such a thing as brushing too often? The answer may surprise you.

When you brush your teeth, you should always do so with a fluoride toothpaste. This helps prevent cavities, tooth decay, gum disease, and all kinds of other dental issues. At Fairfield Dental Arts, we recommend you brush for two minutes, three times a day.

Should you brush your teeth less, it could lead to plaque buildup. Although you may have heard this term before,  plaque is a buildup of bacteria on the teeth. This build-up creates a thin, sticky film on the teeth and having too much of it can eventually lead to tooth decay and cavities. Gum disease can also occur by not brushing your teeth enough.

Brushing too often can also cause trouble. A common misconception is that teeth get cleaner the harder you brush. The opposite is true as the amount of pressure applied has no effect on how clean your teeth get. This could potentially lead to damaging the enamel on your teeth. This protective covering plays an important role in keeping teeth from becoming too sensitive and exposing the nerve. Existing dental work such as fillings and root canals can become damaged due to over brushing. 

The staff of Fairfield Dental Arts is happy to bring you this information and remind you that regular dental checkups will help keep your smile looking youthful and vibrant. For more information, you can visit our website and be on your way to a bright, beautiful smile.

Which Toothbrush Is Right For You?

We all have a preference on feel when it comes to oral hygiene and how we take care of ourselves. With toothbrushes, there are so many shapes, sizes, brands, bristle strength, and more, so how do we know which one is right for us? Here’s what you should look for:


The smaller the head, the farther a toothbrush can reach and the more plaque/debris it can remove. The back teeth are the ones doing the most work when it comes to chewing your food, so make sure you can give them enough attention for a clean mouth!



A toothbrush handle can vary from non-slip or smooth grips, arched or straight necks, and skinny to wide in shape. This really depends on what feels right to you. Everyone’s mouth is different, so choose a brush that gives you the ability to easily provide your teeth a thorough cleaning.


Try an Electric Brush

Manual brushes might seem like your #1 choice, but with electric toothbrushes, we tend to brush more thoroughly and for longer periods of time. This is especially true with an electric toothbrush that has a quadrant timer. Another plus to electric toothbrushes is ease for children or the elderly allowing an easier brush overall.


If you have more questions on toothbrushes and which one is right for you, contact us.

Why You Need to Schedule Bi-Annual Dental Visits

fairfield dentist | fairfield dental artsWhen was your last dental visit? Now that the kids are back in school, it’s time to start thinking about scheduling your bi-annual appointment.

Benefits of Bi-Annual Dental Visits:

  • We Can Catch Problems Early On – During your bi-annual cleanings and exams, we will take a look at your tooth health and address any dental problems early on. This makes it possible to address your smile health before it becomes a more serious (and more painful) problem.
  • You Can Prevent Cavities – Cleanings also PREVENT cavities. By removing tartar and plaque, we can keep your teeth healthy and cavity-free. We may even be able to help you reverse early signs of tooth decay.
  • You’ll Keep Your Teeth Beautiful and Healthy – When you prevent dental cavities, you also keep your teeth beautiful and healthy for a long time to come.  This gives you confidence in your smile and helps prevent future dental procedures.
  • Kids Stay In School – Did you know that about 2.26 million school days are missed each year due to dental-related illnesses? By taking the time to prevent problems with a bi-annual cleaning and exam, you will keep kids healthy and in school.

Dental exams and cleanings are an essential part of your oral health care. Ready to schedule your next dental visit? Give us a call at 203-254-3780 or visit our website to learn more about our practice and the services that we offer.

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7 Benefits of Using Invisalign

Smiling Woman with silicone trainerThinking of improving your smile alignment this summer?  Here are a few of the many benefits that Invisalign® aligners have to offer.

Invisalign® Benefits:

  1. Discreet Alignment – When it comes to smile alignment, many people are concerned about the aesthetic appearance of traditional metallic braces.  Invisalign® makes it possible for patients to discreetly align their smiles.
  2. Removable for Photos – Have a big event coming up? Since Invisalign® is removable, you can take your aligners out for photos. If you leave them in — they are barely noticeable, too!
  3. No Diet Restrictions – Unlike with traditional braces, you don’t need to alter your eating habits to adjust to your new aligners. Invisalign® aligners are completely removable. You should remove them before you eat or drink anything.
  4. Minimal Irritation – Since Invisalign® aligners are clear and smooth, you can straighten your smile without metallic brackets irritating your lips.
  5. Healthier Teeth & Gums – Misaligned teeth can cause your gums to become red and swollen. By taking the time to improve your smile alignment, you also improve your dental health.
  6. Smile Confidence – For adults or teens who are uncomfortable committing to traditional, metallic braces, Invisalign® can help you align your smile with confidence.
  7. Easier Cleaning – One of the biggest challenges that people face with traditional orthodontic braces is that food can become trapped in the brackets and wires.  Since Invisalign® aligners are removable, you can brush and floss your teeth with ease.

Contact our office learn more about your options and whether or not Invisalign® is the right aligner for your dental needs.  At Fairfield Dental Arts, we are fully trained and equipped to handle all of your Orthodontic needs.

Call 203-254-3780 to contact our office or visit our website for more information on the different treatments and services that we offer at Fairfield Dental Arts.

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5 Summer Foods That Keep Your Smile Bright

dentist in fairfieldLooking for a healthy, but seasonal summer snack?  Here are a few foods that will keep your smile bright and white.

Summer Tooth Whitening Foods:

  1. Oranges – Citrus fruits cause your mouth to produce more saliva, which cleans your teeth naturally! Just be careful — too much acidity can damage your tooth enamel.
  2. Pineapples – Pineapples naturally contain an anti-inflammatory compound that can help remove stains. It’s the same ingredient that is found in stain-removing toothpaste!
  3. Strawberries – This smile brightening summer fruit might come as a surprise. Although strawberries will stain your white summer tee, they could actually help brighten your smile. Strawberries contain an enzyme known as malic acid that can help remove surface stains.
  4. Broccoli – This high fiber vegetable can help reduce inflammation in your mouth (and the rest of your body). Adding raw broccoli to your next salad can help clean and polish your teeth. The iron in broccoli can also protect your teeth against acid that degrades your tooth enamel.
  5. Cheese – Cheese contains minerals, like calcium and phosphorus, that help keep your teeth strong!

Remember to stay hydrated this summer too! Water can help keep stains off of your teeth.

If you have any questions about how to care for your teeth or you’re looking for a teeth whitening service, contact our office. We can help you determine the right option for your smile needs. Call 203-254-3780 to contact our office or visit our website for more information on the different treatments and services that we offer at Fairfield Dental Arts.

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