expert type icon EXPERT

Carla H. Schlissel

Dentist

Dr. Carla Schlissel is a Dentist practicing in West Islip, New York. Dr. Schlissel specializes in preventing, diagnosing, and treating diseases and conditions associated with the mouth and overall dental health. Dentists are trained to carry out such treatment as professional cleaning, restorative, prosthodontic, and endodontic procedures, and performing examinations, among many others.
Carla H. Schlissel
  • West Islip, New York
  • State University of New York at Buffalo
  • Accepting new patients

At what age can my little one start brushing her teeth on her own?

Little children like to copy their parents, so congratulations on setting such a good example. Children generally don't have the coordination to do a good job of brushing on their READ MORE
Little children like to copy their parents, so congratulations on setting such a good example. Children generally don't have the coordination to do a good job of brushing on their own until they're about 5 years old, so until then, let her brush her teeth, but "then mommy or daddy has to double check" - and then brush her teeth for her. Just to be sure.

My tooth infection keeps coming back. Can it signify something more serious?

I will assume you had a root canal done. Sometimes they fail (5% of the time). The reason to look at is why. Sometimes there's an extra canal that was, for whatever reason, was READ MORE
I will assume you had a root canal done. Sometimes they fail (5% of the time). The reason to look at is why. Sometimes there's an extra canal that was, for whatever reason, was missed. Sometimes, there's a connection to the gums that needs to be dealt with. And occasionally, it just fails. You need to go back to the treating dentist.

Are cavities possible in baby teeth?

Of course, baby teeth can develop cavities, just like adult teeth. Unfortunately, babies are totally cute and adorable and we adults can't help but kiss them. And, therefore, we READ MORE
Of course, baby teeth can develop cavities, just like adult teeth. Unfortunately, babies are totally cute and adorable and we adults can't help but kiss them. And, therefore, we pass our bacteria on to them. Even worse is when a pacifier drops on the floor and the parent licks off the dirt. The parents' bacteria is now on the pacifier and is passed directly into the baby's waiting mouth. So, if the parent is prone to cavities, now so is the baby. To cut down on the cavities, any time a baby is fed anything, wipe off the gums and teeth with a fingertip or baby toothbrush or washcloth. Do not put the baby to sleep with anything other than water. And if the baby develops a cavity, take the child to your dentist or a children's dentist (pedodontist).

I recently read an article that said poor dental health could cause respiratory problems. Is it true?

Poor oral hygiene often leads to periodontal disease. The bacteria from this disease can easily find their way into your blood stream and cause more than just respiratory problems. READ MORE
Poor oral hygiene often leads to periodontal disease. The bacteria from this disease can easily find their way into your blood stream and cause more than just respiratory problems. It can lead to or worsen heart problems, make it more difficult to maintain glucose control in diabetics, cause neo-natal problems for pregnant women. Not a pretty picture. You should be brushing twice a day and flossing every night. Some people build up plaque more quickly and may need to brush 3 times a day.

I am still having pain after my wisdom tooth extraction last week. Why is this happening?

It's possible that you might have developed what is called a "dry socket." Or perhaps muscle fibers were moved during the extraction. I'd suggest you go back to your oral surgeon, READ MORE
It's possible that you might have developed what is called a "dry socket." Or perhaps muscle fibers were moved during the extraction. I'd suggest you go back to your oral surgeon, or whoever took out the tooth, and check with them.

My molars are hurting. I already had my wisdom teeth all taken out. What can this be?

Well, let's see. It depends on what's causing the pain. Hot, cold, chewing, sugar, nothing in particular? Is it the top molars? The bottom ones? One side? Both sides? There could READ MORE
Well, let's see. It depends on what's causing the pain. Hot, cold, chewing, sugar, nothing in particular? Is it the top molars? The bottom ones? One side? Both sides? There could be many different causes for tooth pain. You might have a cavity, a tooth might be broken, the gum might have receded, exposing your roots, you might have a sinus infection, etc. Your best bet is to see your dentist.

Good luck.

Does brushing with salt help remove yellow stains from the teeth?

Try baking soda (mildly abrasive) moistened with a little peroxide, or a whitening toothpaste. First step should be a cleaning by your dentist or hygienist. They'll be able to READ MORE
Try baking soda (mildly abrasive) moistened with a little peroxide, or a whitening toothpaste. First step should be a cleaning by your dentist or hygienist. They'll be able to remove any tarter and heavy stain that may have accumulated. Congratulations on quitting smoking - that's a tough one to do.

I had a root canal and the area still hurts. Is something wrong?

It could be normal. Any time you have a question like this you should ask your dentist. In this case, ask the dentist that did the root canal.

My nephew has one tooth erupting and he is just 1 month old. Is it normal?

This is very normal. He's probably going to get all of his baby teeth early, and then his adult teeth will probably come in early. There are also kids that get their teeth really READ MORE
This is very normal. He's probably going to get all of his baby teeth early, and then his adult teeth will probably come in early. There are also kids that get their teeth really late, and that's normal, too. No worries.

How long does it take for permanent teeth to come after his primary teeth fall?

It could take from a few days to several weeks for his big teeth to come in. If you have any concerns, take him to a dentist for an X-ray.

Can mouthwashes cause erosion of teeth calcium?

If the mouthwash is very acidic, like vinegar, or possibly high in alcohol, it could weaken the teeth, but otherwise, no.

How effective are sensitivity toothpastes in treating the problem?

Sensitivity toothpastes generally work well. You need to brush thoroughly with them, preferably twice a day, at least 2-3 minutes each time. It sometimes helps to rub a little READ MORE
Sensitivity toothpastes generally work well. You need to brush thoroughly with them, preferably twice a day, at least 2-3 minutes each time. It sometimes helps to rub a little toothpaste into whichever teeth are sensitive just before bed, then spit out, but don't rinse, and just go to bed so the paste has all night to just work its way into the teeth. It may take a couple of weeks to really work, and if one doesn't work for you, look at the active ingredient and find a different toothpaste with a different active ingredient.

What calcium supplements do you recommend for my son's calcium deficiency?

You need to discuss this with his physician. You can ask his dentist or pediatrician for PolyViFlor - a prescription fluoride vitamin. The amount of fluoride he should take will READ MORE
You need to discuss this with his physician. You can ask his dentist or pediatrician for PolyViFlor - a prescription fluoride vitamin. The amount of fluoride he should take will depend upon how much fluoride he gets now in his toothpaste and water.

What could be the reason for my mouth dryness?

There are many reasons to develop a dry mouth. One of the biggest reasons is medication use. Over 1600 medications have dry mouth listed as a side effect. Aging, hormones and stage READ MORE
There are many reasons to develop a dry mouth. One of the biggest reasons is medication use. Over 1600 medications have dry mouth listed as a side effect. Aging, hormones and stage in life also influence this. Continue drinking, as most people are chronically dehydrated. There are a number of products on the market to help deal with this problem, but you should be checked out by your physician and dentist to try to determine the reason for this and whether you need a prescription-strength medication to help.

How should I maintain my gum health?

What I've seen in my practice is that people tell me they brush once or twice a day, but they seem to not brush at their gumline, and then they start bleeding so they avoid their READ MORE
What I've seen in my practice is that people tell me they brush once or twice a day, but they seem to not brush at their gumline, and then they start bleeding so they avoid their gums. To ensure good gum health: Be sure to brush twice a day along your gumline, and floss nightly and use a tongue scraper nightly to disrupt any bacteria that may have started to colonize. If you are diabetic, try to maintain good sugar control. Nothing too magical.

Does clove oil really work in easing tooth pain?

Only temporarily. Go to a dentist to determine the cause of the pain and then treat it.

How many times should I floss?

Floss EVERY night to remove any food particles from the day and to break up any plaque that is between your teeth.

What could be the cause of my throbbing tooth pain?

There could be many reasons for pain: maybe you have a huge cavity or an abscess, or perhaps your tooth is cracked. Call a dentist.

What are the ways to close the gap between two frontal teeth?

You could try bonding the two teeth which can cost between $250-500 each; the bonding could chip, stain or come off and need to be repaired or replaced. You could have laminates READ MORE
You could try bonding the two teeth which can cost between $250-500 each; the bonding could chip, stain or come off and need to be repaired or replaced. You could have laminates or crowns done, which will run between $800-1750 each. And then there's braces.

Is the yellow tinge on my teeth caused by smoking permanent?

The stains can usually be removed for the most part. As long as you smoke the stains will continue to occur. It is best to quit smoking now, before permanent health damage occurs. READ MORE
The stains can usually be removed for the most part. As long as you smoke the stains will continue to occur. It is best to quit smoking now, before permanent health damage occurs.