Bridges

    bridgeIn cases of a missing tooth or teeth,  a dental bridge is one available option to replace and restore the area back to normal appearance and function.  Missing teeth can cause shifting of the adjacent teeth and changes in appearance and speech.

    Bridges utilize the adjacent teeth to support the replacement tooth or teeth.  They  are fixed or cemented to the natural teeth and therefore cannot be removed.

    Complete Dentures

    fulldentureIf all the natural teeth are missing due to gum disease, cavities or injury a complete denture can be made to restore your smile.  Complete dentures are a wonderful way to restore chewing function, speech and support your facial muscles to maintain their proper appearance.

    For first time denture wearers an immediate denture is often made.  This type of denture is made from models and measurements of a patient’s mouth prior to the removal of any remaining teeth.  In this way the wearer does not have to be without teeth during their healing period.

    Crowns

    CrownWhen the damage to a tooth is too great to be restored by a composite filling, a full crown is the restoration of choice to provide the maximum amount of strength to the remaining tooth structure.  Crowns are commonly needed when a cusp or corner breaks off a tooth or when a tooth has biting pressure pain or visible fracture lines.   Crowns are commonly referred to as “caps” as they fit over the entire tooth structure to protect and hold the tooth together.  A crown can also be used to correct cosmetic problems or change the shape and color of a tooth, especially in the front of the mouth.

    The field of dental materials is always evolving giving the dentist more options to treat varying situations utilizing gold, porcelain fused to gold, and all ceramic crowns.  We will be sure to go over all of your options in deciding what materials you would like to use and each specific benefits or applications.

    Dental Implants

    implants2One of the best and most natural ways of replacing missing teeth is by using dental implants.  One of the key benefits of implants over bridges and partial dentures is that an implant connects directly to the jaw bone to support the crown.

    When a tooth is lost, bone loss will eventually occur in the region because the root is no longer stimulating and stabilizing the bone.   So even though a tooth may not be visible there are still benefits to replacing it to prevent the bone in that area from melting away.

    Replacing a tooth with an implant and a crown is not a one-day procedure.  The implant needs time to properly adhere to the bone and create a healthy fusion before the crown can be attached and full biting force can be applied.  In most cases, it will take about 3 months to complete the process.

    Implants are becoming increasing popular as more and more people are discovering that they are the next best thing to your natural teeth.

    Extractions

    Our goal is for you to maintain your teeth for life but sometimes the need for tooth removal arises.   Our office performs most simple extraction procedures but we do work closely with several oral surgeons for more complex cases.  Rest assured we will coordinate any needed treatment with their offices to make the referral process very simple for you.  Oral surgeons commonly extract most wisdom teeth or manage medically complicated cases as well as provide placement of dental implants.

    Fillings

    fillingsOne of the  most conservative ways to restore damage to teeth from decay, wear or breakage is the placement of composite resin or “tooth colored” fillings.  These materials are made of a glass and plastic material and are actually bonded to your tooth giving a tight and strong seal.  They are a very conservative treatment option as minimal amounts of your natural tooth structure needs to be removed in order to place these restorations.

    Partial Dentures

    partialdentureIf several teeth are missing, especially on both sides of the jaw, another replacement option is a removable partial denture.  Partial dentures are typically supported by a strong and thin metal framework which holds the replacement acrylic teeth and a pink gum colored base.  A partial denture is  an effective way to prevent natural teeth from shifting, supporting your cheeks and lips, and stabilizing your occlusion or bite.  It is important for the dentist to check the remaining teeth and bone  to make sure they are strong enough to support and anchor the partial denture.

    Partial dentures are typically removed for cleaning and at night to give the supporting teeth and gums time to rest.

    Tooth Whitening

    whitening_afterDeciduous (baby) teeth are typically whiter than the adult teeth that appear later.  As we age, our adult teeth often become darker, yellower, or stained.  This is partly why white teeth make people look more youthful.  The main causes of darkened teeth are genetics, antibiotics, and certain foods and tobacco.

    Our office uses take home whitening trays which are custom fitted to your teeth.  A specialized whitening gel is placed inside the trays and worn for up to 30 min a day for typically 10-14 days.   Periodic touch up whitening can be done every few months to keep the desired shade.  Brief cold sensitivity is one of the most common side affects which is easily treated with sensitive formula toothpastes before and sometimes after treatment for a short time.

    Veneers

    veneerPorcelain veneers are thin pieces of porcelain used to recreate the natural look of teeth, while also providing strength and resilience comparable to natural tooth enamel.  It is often the material of choice for those looking to make slight position alterations, or to change tooth shape, size, and/or color.  The bond between original tooth and porcelain veneer is critical as it not only provides the esthetic perfection desired, but also a strong bond which is essential for correct veneer function.  Light-sensitive resin is placed between the original tooth and the veneer and then hardened using a special curing light.