The major focus of our practice is to provide a wide range of dental procedures such that the need for inconvenient referrals requiring significant travel time is kept to an absolute minimum. Therefore you will find in the descriptions below a wide range of procedures that will assist you regardless of your dental needs.
The term “filling” is used to describe what is placed in an excavation (or hole) in a tooth that remains typically after decay has been removed. There are four types of fillings that are used in dentistry.
- Amalgam (silver colored)
- Composite ( white colored)
- Porcelain (white colored)
- Gold (gold colored-inlays or onlays)
There are different indications for use of different filling materials; however, a rule of thumb up until recently was that white fillings were used in the front of the mouth and silver fillings were used in the back of the mouth. Recent advances in dental technology however have made it possible to use more esthetic white filling materials in the back of the mouth that are strong enough to support the heavy biting forces that are placed upon them. If fillings are indicated in your treatment plan we will discuss with you your preference prior to the procedure.>
Root Canal Treatment has gotten a bad name and is often the butt of jokes because sometimes even though the need for treatment is diagnosed the patient may delay treatment to the point where decay has burrowed deep into the tooth and infected the nerve and has become severely painful.Therefore in order for the necessity for root canal treatment to be prevented it is important that early treatment of cavities be addressed .When it is determined that root canal treatment is needed; however, it is best to iniate root canal treatment as soon as possible to prevent a painful situation resulting from infection.
During root canal:
- The patient undergoes anesthesia.
- A dental dam is used to isolate the tooth.
- The tooth is opened to allow for removal of infected or dead dental pulp.
- The tooth is comprehensively cleaned, including any cracks and canals.
- With special tools, the doctor reshapes the canals.
- The tooth is filled again with cutting edge biocompatible filling material.
- A temporary covering is used to cover the access opening.
- Patients MUST see their regular dentist quickly for a permanent restoration of the tooth.
Your third molars are more commonly called “wisdom teeth.” Usually appearing in the late teens or early twenties third molars often lack the proper space in the jaw to erupt fully or even at all. This common condition is called impaction.When any tooth lacks the space to come through or simply develops in the wrong place of your jaw and becomes impacted, problems can arise. Primarily, damage to adjacent teeth and crowding occur.
In certain cases, the wisdom tooth that cannot come through becomes inflamed under the gums and in the jawbone,causing a sac to develop around the root of the tooth that then fills with liquid. This can cause a cyst of abscess if it becomes infected. If either of these situations goes untreated, serious damage to the underlying bone and surrounding teeth and tissues can result.
To potentially stave off this result, an extraction of one,several or all of the wisdom teeth may be advised. If that is the case, we have the equipment and training needed to perform such extractions, with an absolute minimum of discomfort. Ask our staff about more information regarding tooth extractions if you feel you may need one.
Our office offers a variety of different oral surgery procedures including but not limited to:
- Extractions- This includes surgical removal of impacted teeth or teeth that are badly broken,including the removal of third molars.
- Alveoloplasty /Alveoloectomy/ Torectomy- These are surgical procedures done to contour the jaw bone (generally after the teeth are removed) in order to provide for proper replacement of missing teeth.
- Biopsy- There are two types of biopsy services that we provide:
- Brush biopsy which is a superficial procedure generally done without anesthesia.
- Conventional biopsy requiring anesthesia (and sedation if desired.)
- Our office works closely with the pathology labs that analyzes specimens such that we can report back to you the results of analysis in a speedy manner.
- Apicoectomy- An Apicoectomy is the surgical removal of the tip of the root of a tooth (the apex) that may have residual infection following previous root canal treatment.
A crown is a permanent covering that fits over an original tooth that is either decayed, damaged or cracked. Crowns can also be used to close spaces or to correct for teeth that are slightly out of position. Crowns are made of a variety of different materials such as porcelain, gold, acrylic resin or a mix of these materials. Porcelain generally has the most natural appearance, although it is often less durable depending on the area of the mouth in which it is used.
The treatment plan for a patient receiving a crown involves:
- Numbing the tooth to remove the decay in or around it.
- Re-sculpturing the tooth to provide an ideal fit for the crown.
- Making an impression of your teeth in order to create a custom-made crown (usually takes one to two weeks).
- Making a temporary crown out of acrylic resin and fitting it onto the tooth during the interim period when the permanent custom-made crown is being created.
- Applying the permanent crown (when received from the lab) by removing the temporary crown and fitting the permanent one onto the tooth.
- After ensuring that the crown has the proper look and fit, the dentist cements it into place.
This process generally consists of a minimum of 2-3 visits over a three to four week period. Even though crowns cannot become diseased the tooth to which the crown in cemented can still become decayed and the gums and bone can become infected with bacteria without proper care. Therefore,daily brushing and flossing and use of a flouride is recommended along with regular hygienist appointments to insure many years of service from your crown(s).
A bridge is a dental device that fills a space that a tooth previously occupied. A bridge may be necessary
- To prevent shifting of the teeth that can lead to bite problems (occlusion) and/or jaw problems and resultant periodontal disease.
- To replace a missing tooth when an implant or removable tooth is not indicated.
There are three main types of bridges, namely:
- Conventional fixed bridge- this is the most popular and consists of a replacement tooth (pontic) that is attached to two crowns, which fit over the existing teeth and hold the bridge in place.
- The “Maryland” bridge is commonly used to replace missing front teeth and consists of a replacment tooth that is attached to metal bands that are bonded to the backside of the adjacent teeth. The metal bands consist of a white-colored composite resin that matches existing tooth color.
- The Cantilever bridge is often used when there are teeth on only one side of the area of the missing tooth. A typical three-unit cantilever bridge consists of two crowned teeth positioned next to each other on the same side of the missing tooth space. The replacement tooth is then connected to the two crowned teeth, extended into the missing tooth space.
Bonding is a common solution for:
- Fixing or repairing chipped or cracked teeth
- Reducing unsightly gaps or spaces between teeth
- Hiding discoloration or faded areas on the tooth’s surface
Often used to improve the appearance of your teeth and enhance your smile. As the name indicates, composite material, either a plastic or resin, is bonded to an existing tooth. Unlike veneers or crowns, composite bonding removes little, if any, of the original tooth.
Composite bonding has many advantages:
- It is a quick process, which typically lasts less than one hour.
- It does not reduce the tooth’s original structure and is relatively inexpensive.
- Composite resins come in many different shades and provide better matching of shades to the natural color of your teeth.
- Composite bonds, however, are not as durable and long-lasting as veneers and crowns and may need to be re-touched or replaced in the future.
Composite bonds stain more easily and therefore require proper care and regular cleaning. In order to ensure the longest possible duration of the bonding, composites should be brushed and flossed daily. Common staining elements include coffee, tea, tobacco, foods and candy.
Dental implants are artificial tooth replacements that were first developed half a century ago by a Swedish scientist named Per-Ingvar Branemark. Since that time dental implants have been perfected to provide for many different applications in the mouth.These include:
- Single Tooth Replacement
- Multiple Tooth Replacement
- Complete Upper and/or Lower Teeth Replacement
Often the use of implants provide a viable alternative for replacement or teeth when the patient does not feel that he/she could get accustomed to wearing removable teeth (like removable partial dentures or complete dentures). The placement of a dental implant may also be considered a more conservative alternative in situations where conventional bridgework would require recontouring the adjacent teeth.
Post Implant Care
Although proper oral hygiene is always recommended for maintaining good dental health, it is especially important when a patient has received a dental implant. Bacteria can attack sensitive areas in the mouth when teeth and gums are not properly cleaned, thus causing gums to swell and jaw bones to gradually recede. Recession of the jawbone will weaken implants and eventually make it necessary for the implant to be removed. Patients are advised to visit their dentists at least twice a year to ensure the health of their teeth and implants. Dental implants can last for decades when given proper care.
In recent years there has been a scientific coorelation established between the presence of gum (periodontal) disease and worsening of ones diabetic or cardiovascular condition. Therefore even though it has always been recommended to address inflamed and infected gums it is even more apparent now that it is known that these dental conditions can actually lead to life threatening situations if left untreated. In keeping with the importance of this subject a thorough periodontal exam is performed at the time of your initial exam and is rechecked at each hygienist visit. If any evidence of gum disease is found treatment options will be discussed with you.
Treatment options include:
- non surgical gum treatment
- arestin therapy
- surgical gum treatment
- adjustment of the bite relationship
- construction of occlusal bite guard
- dietary counseling
- and specific customized home care instructions
If you have any of the signs or symptoms of gum disease please let us know if we can be of any assistance to you.
Partials & Dentures
Sometimes, in order to solve a severe dental problem, it may be in the patient’s best interest to extract all or part of the teeth.When this becomes necessary it is comforting to know that you never have to leave our office without teeth. This will allow you to smile even after major work.Through the use of immediate dentures or partials, also known as temporary dentures or partials, extracted teeth can be replaced immediately. Once the gum and bone have properly healed more permanent teeth replacements can be constructed (conventional dentures or partial dentures.)
Our dentures and partial dentures are constructed of the finest materials available in dentistry and the laboratories we use to aid in their construction have decades of experience. Therefore we feel confident that we can properly fit dentures to your specifications and also achieve a great cosmetic result. If you are in need of dentures or partial dentures please call us- we guarantee you will like the result.