Archive for the ‘Health and Fitness’ Category

Dental Bridges: Are They for You?

dental bridge

You might think that “dental bridge” sounds like something for an old person. Maybe you think it sounds like some kind of dental work or a fix for a problem you don’t need. However, dental bridges are a vital part of the dental health of many people. Some people even think “dental bridge” is just a nice word for dentures.

The first step to understanding whether or not you need a dental bridge repair is gaining an understanding of what a dental bridge really is. The term “bridge” comes from the fact that a dental bride generally reaches across three teeth. It’s generally used to replace a tooth that has fallen out or been removed. The tooth in the middle is the replacement tooth. There are a lot of varieties of bridges. Generally, the middle tooth connects to existing teeth. In some cases, it connects to dental implants.

Dental bridges, like crowns and other dental devices, have evolved a long way from their original form. Past (and, in some cases, current) materials include gold and silver. Remember the days of gold crowns on teeth? The fix, in this case, is an obvious one. However, evolution of materials has led to the formulation of more accurate replications of teeth. Porcelain models more closely replicate tooth structure, texture, and, in most cases, they even can be color-adjusted to match the rest of the mouth.

Dental bridge installation, though, is not nearly as simple as San Antonio dentist just snapping a tooth between existing teeth. The teeth on either side of the gap, just like having a crown installed, must be reduced in size. Generally, they are filed down. Why? This allows for the artificial teeth to be placed over them without disrupting the existing dynamics of your mouth. No filing would result in abnormally large teeth, which is an unnecessary encumbrance.

Covering up the adjacent teeth is equivalent to crowning them. The extra inserted tooth is called a “pontic.” Say, however, that you lose three teeth in a row. Rather than get three dental implants, you can get a dental bridge. In lieu of crowning existing teeth, you can get two non-adjacent teeth as dental implants and then have a pontic in the middle.

Why not just get three dental implants? Well, to start, having two rather than three implants reduces swelling, trauma, etc. Any time skin or gums are punctured, there’s a risk for infection. Reducing the incisions made will reduce your risks of further complications. In addition, cost savings is an issue. When you reduce the extensiveness of a surgery, you generally reduce cost, which is important if you want to save money. Also, it’s not necessary to have all three teeth implanted – two implants, like two regular teeth, provide a sturdy anchor on which to attach the pontic.

In today’s age of advanced dentistry, there’s no need to be afraid of dental implants. Dental work is less conspicuous and less invasive than it used to be. Whether you’ve lost multiple teeth or have just lost one, dental bridges may be for you, even if you’ve had to undergo serious dental bridge repair in the past.

Daniela Dental
6415 Babcock Rd. #105
San Antonio, Texas 78249
(210) 696-8050

Teeth ( / CC BY 2.0 (

Can Tai Chi Help Your Arthritis Pain?

interventional pain associates

What is Tai Chi? This question has come up many times in recent years, since it was discovered that the slow, methodical movements associated with the martial art are good for chronic pain sufferers. Though it was originally developed in ancient China as a method of self-protection, it has long since been recognized for its health benefits. In fact, some believe that it was less of a self-defense practice in its earliest days and more of a treatment for monks who suffered physical ailments.

The purpose of this exercise program is not to raise one’s heart rate quickly or to break a deep sweat. Instead, the focus is on rhythmic breathing and focused movements for improved overall health and well being. Tai Chi is an excellent way to reduce stress, improve flexibility, and as many patients have discovered, can greatly reduce the impact of arthritis.

Because the exercise focuses so intently on controlled, slow movement, it is a safe method of exercise for nearly all ages and all physical abilities. It can be adapted to meet the needs of those with chronic pain conditions, including back pain, osteoporosis, and fibromyalgia. It can also prove very beneficial for arthritis patients.

Is it the right choice for arthritis? Particularly for older adults, suffering with the symptoms of the joint diseases, there have been profound impacts on pain levels after just a few sessions of tai chi. Just fifteen or twenty minutes per day was enough to drastically improve the condition of the patients. Because arthritis tends to impact one’s flexibility and can make the sufferer feel very stiff in day-to-day life, tai chi is the perfect choice in exercise. The low impact movements are designed to improve the way the joints move and to relieve tightness of the muscles, and the patient doesn’t even often comprehend that the movements are making such improvements because they do not stress the body like other forms of exercise would.

What if I don’t exercise? The thought of being a beginner in an exercise-focused class can be intimidating for those who haven’t hit the gym in months or years, but Tai Chi classes are welcoming. Unlike aerobics, spinning, and Zumba classes, Tai Chi is not going to push an individual beyond his or her comfort zone at the beginning. The stretches are easily adapted to meet the needs of the participants, so all leave the class feeling better than when they entered.

Austin, TX pain management specialists like Tai Chi because it encourages movement that works muscles not used to walk across a room or climb a flight of stairs; Interventional Pain Associates recognize the importance of reducing stiffness to counteract the pain commonly seen in arthritis patients. It can be used for those suffering with general chronic pain illnesses, RA, osteoarthritis, or many of the other common rheumatologic disorders with wonderful success. And, as a larger portion of the country begins to see the amazing impact Tai Chi can have, the classes are becoming more and more widely accessible.

Interventional Pain Associates
4613 Bee Caves Road, Suite 105
Austin, TX 78746
(512) 795-7575

img_26082 | Flickr – Photo Sharing! : taken from – dpape