My Blog

Posts for: May, 2014

By Hockaday & Baucom, DDS
May 27, 2014
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: orthodontics   tads  

The field of orthodontics continues to progress with new and innovative techniques. One such innovation is known as a TAD — Temporary Anchorage Device. Best described as “mini-implants,” TADs provide orthodontists with more precise control over the movement and positioning of certain teeth that could reduce treatment time.

Braces, the most common form of orthodontic device, are small brackets affixed to the outside of the teeth. We thread small flexible wires through the brackets which in turn apply gentle pressure to the teeth. This puts pressure on the periodontal ligament, an elastic tissue that holds the teeth in place to the jawbone. The ligament has small fibers that insert into the teeth and are held there by a substance called cementum. The pressure on the ligament causes it to form new bone, ligament and cementum as it moves into the new desired position.

Of course, each orthodontic case is different. The best outcome for some patients is to move only certain teeth, while minimizing movement on others. This involves a concept in orthodontics known as “anchorage,” a planned circumstance where certain teeth or groups of teeth are immobilized (or “anchored”) to prevent movement.

TADs do just that — they are, in effect, mini-screws or implants temporarily placed in the jaw bone to inhibit movement of a specific tooth or group of teeth, while not interfering with the movement of the misaligned teeth. These tiny devices are typically installed using only local anesthesia to numb the general location of their placement, and then removed when orthodontic treatment is completed.

TADs are part of an overall strategy to correct poor bite and teeth misalignment in the most precise and efficient way possible. They require planning, sometimes through consultation with different dental disciplines, to assure that their placement won’t damage nerves, sinuses or other vital structures. Their use, though, could help shorten treatment time with braces, and help contribute to the best possible outcome — a new smile.

If you would like more information on transitional mini implants, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “What are TADs?

By Hockaday & Baucom, DDS
May 20, 2014
Category: Family Dentistry
Tags: Charlotte   Dentist  
Family dentists are equipped to provide dental care that is tailored to patients of all ages and healthfamily dentist needs. So whether you are 1 or 100, family dentists can provide a single location for your entire family’s oral health.
Hockaday & Baucom, DDS offers what's important in your search for a dentist—the personalized, total family care of a gentle, Charlotte, NC dentist in conjunction with the benefits of state-of-the-art dentistry. So what are the advantages of choosing a family dentist in Charlotte?
At Hockaday & Baucom, DDS, we believe a good family dentist possesses the following qualities:
Experience treating patients of all ages.
One of the unique qualities of a family dentistry is that we specialize in providing total family care. From infants to grandparents, we provide gentle, oral health services to every member of your household.
Full range of dental services.
As a Charlotte family dentist, we are highly skilled in all areas of dental care. Our services range from routine cleanings and exams to full tooth restorations and cosmetic procedures, such as veneers and teeth whitening, to meet the needs of every family member. So whether your teen needs braces or dad requires a crown, every member of the family can have their oral health needs met under one roof.
Continuing education for dental professionals.
In order to provide the highest level of care to our patients, our dentists and staff receive ongoing training every year. Patients can relax with confidence knowing they are always receiving the most advanced care that modern dentistry has to offer.
State-of-the-art technology.
At Hockaday & Baucom, DDS, we use the latest dental technology to administer the most pain free, precise and efficient care possible.
Easy appointment scheduling.
We have families too, so we understand the stresses that come with coordinating schedules around work and school. After all, why worry about multiple appointments when you can save time by scheduling appointments for the whole family in one visit? We offer the ability to make simultaneous appointments, and with our online appointment requesting, you can conveniently book your visits from our website 24/7.
Cater to kids.
Our dental team has received advanced training to provide the most gentle and thorough dental care for kids. We help children establish good oral health habits that will last a lifetime, and show them that going to the dentist is important and even fun! We believe that pleasurable visits to the dentist at an early age promote enjoyable dental experiences into adulthood.
Hockaday & Baucom, DDS wants to be an important partner in your family’s oral health. Contact our office or visit our appointment request page to schedule your first visit!


Life lessons are learned in the most surprising places. This is no different for celebrities. Take, for example, Florence Henderson, an actress, singer, philanthropist, author and star of the hit television series, The Brady Bunch. As she told Dear Doctor magazine, her experience with having four impacted wisdom teeth removed — at the same time — “...only made me more aware of how important dental care is.” She continued, “This is why I have always gone every six months for a check up.”

Another important lesson we want to share is the fact that even if your impacted third molars (wisdom teeth) are not bothering you or causing any pain, you may still need to have them removed.

Why? Having a tooth submerged below the gum, pressing on the roots of other teeth is problematic; the tooth should be removed so that you can avoid major dental problems before they occur. For example, it is not uncommon for us to find an impacted third molar pressing against the roots of the adjacent second molar. Furthermore, because the enamel crown of this impacted tooth is trapped below the gum, we sometimes find an infection, gum disease or even cyst formation occurring.

Often, the best time to remove a wisdom tooth is when it is not causing any problems. This is because a painful wisdom tooth or pain in the area of the wisdom tooth may be a sign that significant damage has occurred or is occurring. It is also better to remove wisdom teeth when you are young, as young healthy people with no prior infections at the site provide the best opportunity for us to remove the tooth with no complications.

To learn more about impacted wisdom teeth, continue reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Removing Wisdom Teeth.” Or if you suspect or already know that you have an impacted wisdom tooth, contact us today to schedule an appointment so that we can conduct a thorough examination that includes x-rays. During this private consultation, we will also address any questions you have as well as your treatment options. And if you want to read the entire article on Florence Henderson, continue reading “Florence Henderson.”

By Hockaday & Baucom, DDS
May 02, 2014
Category: Oral Health

When children begin losing their primary (“baby”) teeth, it’s a rite of passage — a sign that childhood is transitioning to future adulthood. And while it’s a normal part of dental development, it does bear watching for abnormalities.

Primary teeth are like deciduous tree leaves in that it’s their nature to shed and give way for new growth. They serve a purpose not only in providing children a means to bite and chew food, but also as guides for the permanent teeth that will soon erupt in their place.

As it reaches the end of its development within the jaw, the permanent tooth will begin to exert pressure on the primary tooth. This stimulates a process known as resorption where the primary’s roots begin to dissolve. This weakens its attachment to the jaw and the tooth becomes loose to the touch. At the end of this process, it doesn’t take much coaxing for the tooth to finally come out of its socket, with occasional minor bleeding and tenderness around the site. You will notice if you look at the bottom of the lost tooth that the roots have completely dissolved, leaving only a small indention.

This natural process, however, can run into complications. In their roles as permanent teeth guides, there’s a natural sequence for the loss of primary teeth; the permanent teeth develop along this sequence, which helps them erupt in the proper position. If a primary tooth is lost early and out of sequence (notably because of decay), the premature space can cause misalignment of the permanent teeth as they erupt.

That’s why it’s important for your child to have regular dental checkups, beginning sometime around their first birthday. This allows us to monitor primary tooth loss to make sure its progressing normally, as well as treat any condition such as tooth decay that could lead to premature loss. Regular checkups along with good oral hygiene practices will help ensure that the transition from primary to permanent teeth goes just as nature intended.

If you would like more information on the process of losing primary teeth in children, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Losing a Baby Tooth.”