Consultation

Our ultimate goal is to secure the safety, health, and beauty of your teeth for a lifetime so you can always smile with confidence. The very best way to achieve this is through an individually tailored prevention program designed through the cooperative effort of the patient, the dentist, and our dental staff. With the practice of good oral hygiene at home combined with a balanced diet and regular dental visits, we can effectively preserve the natural dentition of your teeth and their supporting structures for years to come. This is the very best way to minimize or eliminate the onset, progress, and recurrence of dental diseases and conditions that can result in serious and costly dental problems. Let us help you maintain a healthy, confident, and beautiful smile.

Cosmetic Dentistry

Over the past decade, interest in improving and maintaining an attractive smile has risen dramatically. Modern cosmetic dentistry has developed numerous quick, painless, and surprisingly affordable ways to address the wide variety of problems that can arise in the appearance and dental structure of teeth. These treatments help to build and protect bright and healthy smiles that can enhance appearance and often improve self confidence. Here is a list of what modern cosmetic dental treatments can accomplish:

  • Change the size, shape, and alignment of individual teeth
  • Fill in unattractive spaces between teeth
  • Improve or correct bite positions
  • Lighten or brighten tooth color
  • Repair decayed, broken, cracked, or chipped teeth
  • Replace missing teeth
  • Replace old, unattractive dental treatments

Custom Smile Design

Over the past decade, interest in improving and maintaining an attractive smile has risen dramatically. Modern cosmetic dentistry has developed numerous quick, painless, and surprisingly affordable ways to address the wide variety of problems that can arise in the appearance and dental structure of teeth. These treatments help to build and protect bright and healthy smiles that can enhance appearance and often improve self confidence. Here is a list of what modern cosmetic dental treatments can accomplish:

  • Change the size, shape, and alignment of individual teeth
  • Fill in unattractive spaces between teeth
  • Improve or correct bite positions
  • Lighten or brighten tooth color
  • Repair decayed, broken, cracked, or chipped teeth
  • Replace missing teeth
  • Replace old, unattractive dental treatments

Dental Implants

What are dental implants?

Dental implants are recommended for those seeking a permanent solution to missing teeth. They are designed to look natural while also giving you the ability to have stable function of natural teeth. Dental implants are surgically placed into the mouth by inserting a titanium anchor into your jaw. After the anchor is placed, the bone will heal (about 6 months) around the titanium and hold it into place. When your dentist thinks you are ready, they will place your custom made artificial tooth into the anchor.

Dental implants are not recommended for everyone. In order to be eligible to receive implants, you must have enough bone structure to support the implant, free of chronic illnesses and must ensure that you will maintain proper oral hygiene to care for a new implant.

Dental X-Rays

Taking dental x-rays or radiographs is essential for diagnosing dental disease and concerns. These radiographs show teeth, bones and soft tissue to help dentists determine if there are caries or hidden dental problems such as bone loss that cannot be seen when looking into a mouth. Taking dental x-rays can also help catch dental disease early to prevent pain and expensive dental treatment.

Dental x-rays use very small amounts of radiation and exposure to this small amount of radiation is safe. When a patient receives a full mouth series of x-rays, this is equivalent to radiation exposure in everyday life.

Dentures & Partial Dentures

What are dentures and partial dentures?

Dentures and partial dentures are removable dental appliances that are used to replace teeth that are missing. Full dentures offer artificial teeth to those that have lost all of their teeth on either the upper or lower arch of their mouth. Obtaining a denture will restore function and appearance to those who have lost all of their teeth. Dentures allow many patients to eat, speak and improve the appearance of their mouth. Partial dentures are recommended for those who have not lost all of their teeth and have some teeth remaining. The partial denture will consist of artificial teeth that will replace missing teeth and metal clasps that clip on to remaining teeth to help hold it in place.

The process of obtaining dentures and partial dentures

When you and your dentist have decided what option is best for you, your dentist can help you get started. If complete dentures is the option for you, the dentures are created once your teeth have been removed and your gums have healed. Due to this reason, this process can take several months. During the healing process, a set of immediate dentures may be given to you so you do not have to be without teeth. In both complete denture and partial denture treatments, several impressions will be taken so that dental laboratories can get a sense of the shape of your mouth so they can create custom dentures for you. Several appointments will be made for you to come back to your dentist to try on the dentures in order to ensure that your dentures are made to fit you properly. During your final appointment, you will receive your final finished denture so you can get your beautiful smile back.

After receiving your final dentures, your dentist will provide you with special instructions on how to maintain proper hygiene and also how to clean your dentures.

Extractions

A tooth that is severely damaged may need to be removed. A surgeon who specializes in surgeries of the mouth (oral and maxillofacial surgeon) or your dentist can remove a tooth.

Before removing your tooth, your dentist will give you a local anesthetic to numb the area where the tooth will be removed. A stronger, general anesthetic may be used, especially if several or all of your teeth need to be removed. General anesthetic prevents pain in the whole body and will make you sleep through the procedure.

After the tooth is removed, you may need stitches. You can gently bite down on a cotton gauze pad placed over the wound to help stop the bleeding. The removed tooth can be replaced with an implant, a denture, or a bridge. A bridge is a replacement for one or more (but not all) of the teeth and may be permanent or removable.

What To Expect After Surgery

In most cases, the recovery period lasts only a few days. The following will help speed recovery:

  • Take painkillers as prescribed by your dentist or oral surgeon.
  • After 24 hours, rinse your mouth gently with warm salt water several times a day to reduce swelling and relieve pain. Make your own salt water by mixing 1 tsp (5 g) of salt in a medium-sized glass [8 fl oz (237 mL)] of warm water.
  • Change gauze pads before they become soaked with blood.
  • Relax after surgery. Physical activity may increase bleeding.
  • Avoid smoking.
  • Eat soft foods, such as gelatin, pudding, or a thin soup. Gradually add solid foods to your diet as healing progresses.
  • Do not lie flat. This may prolong bleeding. Prop up your head with pillows.
  • Avoid rubbing the area with your tongue.
  • Continue to carefully brush your teeth and tongue.

After the tooth is removed, you may need stitches. Some stitches dissolve over time, and some have to be removed after a few days. Your dentist will tell you whether your stitches need to be removed.

Why It Is Done

Removing a tooth is necessary when decay or an abscessed tooth is so severe that no other treatment will cure the infection.

Invisalign

What is Invisalign?

Invisalign is another option for those who are seeking orthodontic care. For many, the primary concern for their smile is the appearance of their teeth. With Invisalign, patients can now receive orthodontic care with clear aligning trays that will improve the appearance of teeth without having to place metal braces. Metal braces can be irritating, restrict consumption of specific foods, and make brushing and flossing a hassle. Invisalign trays can be removed easily and are easily integrated into your everyday life.

How does Invisalign work?

Invisalign works through the use of removable aligners instead of using the traditional non-removable braces. Many dentists are able to provide Invisalign treatment, so there is no need to go to an orthodontist. Check with your dentist to see if they are able to provide you with this treatment.

When you and dentist decide that Invisalign is a good treatment for you, your dentist will take impressions and radiographs of your teeth so a treatment plan can be created for you. Your dentist will show you how your teeth will move and shift as your treatment comes along. Depending on the severity of your case, treatment time is variable.

When a treatment plan is created, clear tray aligners will be created to custom fit your teeth. These tray aligners are removable and can be removed when eating, brushing and flossing so that they do not interfere with your everyday life. The aligners are also made of smooth plastic so they so they do not irritate your cheeks and you do not even notice that you are wearing them. These aligner trays are replaced every two weeks with a new aligner that will help shift your teeth into the next phase of treatment.

Advantages of Using Invisalign

  • Clear and invisible – no more traditional braces
  • Removable
  • Smooth plastic – no cheek or gum irritation
  • Straightens teeth in a comparable amount of time to traditional metal braces
  • Helps with cases of gaps, overcrowding, crossbites, underbites, overbites

Porcelain Crowns

What is a porcelain crown?

A porcelain crown is a tooth shaped cap that is used to help replaced teeth that cannot be restored using the traditional filling. They are generally suggested for patients who have had severely decayed or damaged teeth. Porcelain crowns match the color of teeth to give a natural appearance. There are many other types of crowns such as gold or silver, but porcelain crowns are most popular because they give the most natural look.

How are porcelain crowns placed?

When you and your dentist decide that getting a crown is the right option for you, the dentist will shape the tooth in a shape that enables him or her to place a crown. Depending on the damage of the tooth and how much tooth structure is present, the dentist will either shape the tooth or build up the tooth in order to support the crown. Several impressions will be taken so that a dental laboratory can custom make a cap for your tooth. While you wait for the dental laboratory to create your crown, your dentist will create a temporary crown for you that will be replaced when your final crown is finished. When the crown is finished by the dental laboratory, the dentist will try on the crown to ensure that the fit and bite are correct. The porcelain crown is then cemented to your tooth to give you a beautiful and natural appearance.

With care, porcelain crowns can be very durable and have the ability to last a long time. Your dentist will give you special instructions on how you can keep your crown clean with brushing and flossing so that you can help your crown last for years.

Although receiving a crown can take two visits to complete, if your dentist uses CAD-CAM technology such as CEREC®, they may be able to offer you a crown in one visit. Consult with your dentist to see if this is an option for you.

Porcelain Fixed Bridges

What are porcelain fixed bridges?

Porcelain fixed bridges are non-removable appliances that are placed on teeth to replace a tooth that is missing. Porcelain bridges are made to match the natural color of your teeth and help fill in the gap where a tooth is missing. Bridges are essentially two crowns that that anchor an artificial tooth in between. The two crowns are cemented onto the teeth surrounding the missing tooth to help anchor the artificial tooth into place (abutment). The artificial tooth (pontic) is in place of the missing tooth to fill in the gap and allow your teeth to look natural.

The process of getting a porcelain fixed bridge

When you and your dentist decide that a porcelain fixed bridge is the right option for you, the dentist will begin preparing the two teeth that surround the missing tooth. The teeth are prepared so that two crowns can be placed in order to support the artificial tooth. Several impressions will be taken in order for the dentist to determine the size of the crowns and artificial tooth. Once the impressions are taken, they are sent to a dental laboratory where your bridge will be made. Setting a bridge generally takes two dental visits to complete. Once the dental laboratory has made your bridge, the dentist will cement the crowns into place.

Porcelain fixed bridges are very durable and can last a very long time when they are well taken care of. Your dentist will give you special instructions on how you can keep your bridge clean through brushing and flossing.

Porcelain Inlays and Onlays

What are Porcelain Inlays and Onlays?

Porcelain Inlays and Onlays are restorative fillings that are made using different materials such as porcelain, gold or composite. Porcelain is often the most popular because it mimics natural tooth color. The porcelain is custom created to fit into the prepared tooth cavity and cemented in. Porcelain on its own can be very brittle, but when porcelain is bonded to tooth structure, it becomes very strong and durable.

Due to the durability of porcelain inlays and onlays, they may be recommended for patients who have more severe decay that cannot be repaired by a traditional filling. Generally, teeth that are broken, have severe decay or have fractured fillings are recommended to receive a porcelain inlay or onlay.

What is the difference between inlays and onlays?

Inlays and onlays are both made at dental laboratories. Therefore, the process generally takes two visits to complete. Porcelain inlays are used in place on traditional silver or composite fillings. They are placed into the prepared tooth where a filling would be placed. Onlays are also known as “partial crowns” and they are caps that help protect the chewing surface of the tooth that has been damaged. Both inlays and onlays last for a very long time and provide patients with beautiful results, but they may eventually need to be replaced.

Porcelain Veneers

What are veneers?

Veneers are thin shells that are custom made to go on front teeth. Porcelain veneers are sculpted out of porcelain by a dental laboratory in order to fix the appearance of teeth. Veneers can help correct crooked teeth, severely stained teeth, chipped teeth, teeth with gaps and etc.

The Veneer Process

Because the placement of veneers is a irreversible process, consult with a dentist to see if porcelain veneers is the right choice for you. The placement of veneers is generally a two-visit process that requires the dentist to prepare the teeth by removing some of the enamel to ensure that the veneer fits and looks natural. An impression will also be taken to determine the size and shape of the veneers. This impression is sent to a dental laboratory where they will create a custom porcelain veneer. During your second visit to the dentist, the veneer will be placed by bonding it to the existing the teeth to give you a beautiful smile.

Taking Care of Your Veneers

After receiving veneers, you must maintain great oral hygiene. Your new porcelain veneers should be treated like normal teeth and your dentist will give you special instructions on how to brush and floss your new veneers.

Root Canal Therapy

What is a root canal?

Root canal therapy is a treatment used to save a tooth when the tissue, blood vessels and nerves inside of a tooth have become inflamed. In order to save the tooth and remove the pain, the dentist will need to remove infected and diseased tissue to help clean out the infected area. The canal inside is then medicated to allow the surrounding area to heal.

Reasons a root canal may be performed

  • Deep decay
  • Infections at the tip of the root or inside the tooth canal
  • Cracked, broken or injured teeth

Generally, but not always, a crown will need to be placed after the root canal treatment is complete in order to protect the tooth from any further damage. Sensitivity after the procedure is generally experienced by many patients and subside when the tooth has healed. When your treatment has been completed, your dentist will provide you with special instructions on how to care for your newly treated tooth.

Tooth Whitening

Tooth Whitening is a popular procedure done to brighten your smile. First, speak with your dentist to see if whitening is a good option for you. Depending on the type of discoloration that is present on your teeth, whitening may or may not be effective. Common reasons for teeth discoloration result from using tobacco, staining from food or drinks and poor oral hygiene. Tooth whitening is most effective on surface stains. Although whitening is helpful for the appearance of teeth, it is not permanent and stains may recur over time.

There are many types of whitening that can be done and the most common type is a gel-solution that can be applied directly to the surface of the teeth. This type of whitening can be done at a dental office or at home. At a dental office, the dentist will put a whitening agent on the teeth that is activated by a light or laser. For whitening at home, the dentist may recommend that you wear a whitening tray containing the whitening agent for several hours a day till you reach the shade you desire. Whitening toothpaste may also be purchased to help remove staining on the enamel.

Contact your dentist to see if tooth whitening is right for you.

Wisdom Teeth

Wisdom teeth are the third and final set of molars that most people get in their late teens or early twenties. Sometimes these teeth can be a valuable asset to the mouth when healthy and properly aligned, but more often, they are misaligned and require removal.

When wisdom teeth are misaligned, they may position themselves horizontally, be angled toward or away from the second molars, or be angled inward or outward. Poor alignment of wisdom teeth can crowd or damage adjacent teeth, the jawbone, or nerves.

Anatomy of the Teeth

The teeth are the hardest substances in the human body. Besides being essential for chewing, the teeth play an important role in speech. Parts of the teeth include:

  • Enamel: The hardest, white outer part of the tooth. Enamel is mostly made of calcium phosphate, a rock-hard mineral.
  • Dentin: A layer underlying the enamel. Dentin is made of living cells, which secrete a hard mineral substance.
  • Pulp: The softer, living inner structure of teeth. Blood vessels and nerves run through the pulp of the teeth.

Wisdom teeth also can be impacted — they are enclosed within the soft tissue and/or the jawbone or only partially break through or erupt through the gum. Partial eruption of the wisdom teeth allows an opening for bacteria to enter around the tooth and cause an infection, which results in pain, swelling, jaw stiffness, and general illness. Partially erupted teeth are also more prone to tooth decay and gum diseas,e because their hard-to-reach location and awkward positioning makes brushing and flossing difficult.

How Do I Know if I Have Wisdom Teeth?

Ask your dentist about the positioning of your wisdom teeth. He or she may take an X-ray periodically to evaluate for the presence and alignment of your wisdom teeth. Your dentist may also decide to send you to an oral surgeon for further evaluation.

Your dentist or oral surgeon may recommend that your wisdom teeth be extracted even before problems develop. This is done to avoid a more painful or more complicated extraction that might have to be done a few years later. Removal is easier in young people, when the wisdom teeth roots are not yet fully developed and the bone is less dense. In older people, recovery and healing time tend to be longer.

How Are Wisdom Teeth Removed?

The relative ease at which your dentist or oral surgeon can extract your wisdom teeth depends on their position and stage of development. Your oral health care provider will be able to give you an idea of what to expect during your pre-extraction exam. A wisdom tooth that is fully erupted through the gum can be extracted as easily as any other tooth. However, a wisdom tooth that is underneath the gums and embedded in the jawbone will require an incision into the gums and then removal of the portion of bone that lies over the tooth. Often, for a tooth in this situation, the tooth will be extracted in small sections rather than removed in one piece to minimize the amount of bone that needs to be removed to get the tooth out.

What Happens During Wisdom Teeth Removal?

Before your wisdom teeth are pulled, the teeth and the surrounding tissue will be numbed with a local anesthetic — the same type used to numb a tooth prior to having a cavity filled. In addition to the local anesthetic to numb the pain, you and your dentist or oral surgeon may decide that a sedative is desired to control any anxiety. Sedating medications that could be selected include: nitrous oxide (otherwise known as “laughing gas”), an oral sedative (for example, Valium), or an intravenous sedative (administered via an injection into your veins). If nitrous oxide is given, you will be able to drive yourself home. If any of the other medications is selected, you will need someone to drive you both to and from the appointment.

Oral Conscious Sedation

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