Common Problems

Trusted Family & Cosmetic Dentistry in Metairie & Gretna, LA

Dr. Gregory P. Guerra has proudly served the Metairie, Gretna, and greater New Orleans, LA area since 2001. Dr. Guerra and his team offer comprehensive family dentistry as well as cosmetic and restorative procedures like dental implants.

Many patients begin their relationship with us after a problem arises or they find themselves in pain. Below you will find examples of oral issues seen frequently in our office. If you have any further questions, you may find answers in our FAQ section, or you can contact our office and one of our friendly team members will be happy to assist you.

Tooth Decay

Caries, or tooth decay, is a preventable disease that may not endanger your life but will likely negatively impact your quality of life.

When your teeth and gums are consistently exposed to large amounts of starches and sugars, acids may form that begin to eat away at tooth enamel. Carbohydrate-rich foods such as candy, cookies, soft drinks and even fruit juices leave deposits on your teeth. Those deposits bond with the bacteria that normally survive in your mouth and form plaque. The combination of deposits and plaque forms acids that can damage the mineral structure of teeth, with tooth decay resulting. Along with regular brushing and flossing, there are preventative treatments and behaviors which can help you avoid tooth decay.

Sensitive Teeth

Your teeth expand and contract in reaction to changes in temperature. Hot and cold food and beverages can cause pain or irritation to people with sensitive teeth. Over time, tooth enamel can be worn down, gums may recede or teeth may develop microscopic cracks, exposing the interior of the tooth and irritating nerve endings. Just breathing cold air can be painful for those with extremely sensitive teeth.

Gum Disease

Gum, or periodontal, disease can cause inflammation, tooth loss, and bone damage. Gum disease begins with a sticky film of bacteria called plaque. Gums in the early stage of disease, or gingivitis, can bleed easily and become red and swollen. As the disease progresses to periodontitis, teeth may fall out or need to be removed by a dentist. Gum disease is highly preventable and can usually be avoided by daily brushing and flossing. One indicator of gum disease is consistent bad breath or a bad taste in the mouth.

Bad Breath (Halitosis)

Daily brushing and flossing helps to prevent the buildup of food particles, plaque and bacteria in your mouth. Food particles left in the mouth deteriorate and cause bad breath. While certain foods, such as garlic or anchovies, may create temporary bad breath, consistent bad breath may be a sign of gum disease or another dental problem.

Canker Sores

Canker sores (aphthous ulcers) are small sores inside the mouth that often recur and generally last one or two weeks. The duration of canker sores can often be reduced by the use of antimicrobial mouthwashes or topical agents. A canker sore has a white or gray base usually surrounded by a red border and can be fairly painful.

Orthodontic Problems

A bite that does not meet properly (a malocclusion,) can be inherited, or in some cases may be acquired. Some causes of malocclusion include: missing or extra teeth, crowded teeth, or misaligned jaws. Accidents or developmental issues, such as finger or thumb sucking over an extended period of time, may also cause malocclusions. Any misalignment should be addressed as soon as possible to prevent long term problems from arising.

Schedule an Appointment with our Metairie & Gretna Dentist!


Our office is committed to achieving the best possible results with all patients. We invite you to schedule an appointment today to speak with Dr. Guerra and start your journey to a happier, healthier smile. We have two locations in Metairie and Gretna for your convenience. Thank you for choosing Guerra Dental Health; we look forward to seeing you!