OUR DENTAL SERVICES
We are here to help whether you have a toothache, need an implant, or just want to get your teeth cleaned. Call our dental office today and schedule an appointment.
We offer resin composite, amalgam, and resin-modified glass ionomer fillings. All of these materials have their place in dentistry. There is a great deal of misinformation about some dental materials, but we are here to help explain the pros and cons of each material. All the materials we use are safe and have advantages in certain situations.
Resin composite fillings are very esthetic, conservative and safe. Resin composite performs best when the tooth can be isolated and kept dry of saliva during the curing process. We utilize dental dams or Dryshield® mouthpieces for every composite restoration. Resin composite is our most commonly used filling material.
Dental Amalgam is made from a mixture of different metals. It is one of the most durable, functional, and well studied dental materials available. Amalgam has an excellent track record in difficult environments. It is the material of choice when the salivary flow has greatly diminished, isolation from saliva cannot be achieved and when esthetics is not a top priority.
Resin-modified glass ionomer is our least commonly used filling material. They don’t have the durability of resin composite or amalgam, but they do work well when shorter-term patchwork is needed.
When a tooth has lost a significant amount of structure due to decay or fracture a crown is often the best solution. We offer ceramic, zirconia, and gold crowns. Each has advantages in certain situations.
All Ceramic crowns are the most esthetic crowns available. They can achieve excellent color matching with adjacent teeth and appear incredibly lifelike. Modern ceramic systems have become very strong and have a low risk of fracture. When esthetics are the top priority our recommendation is typically an all-ceramic crown.
Zirconia Crowns have come a long way in the last decade. They are available in esthetic versions that get very close to the beauty of all-ceramic crowns. They are the strongest tooth colored crown available. These crowns require a minimal reduction in tooth structure, excellent durability, and strength, along with very good aesthetics. This is our most commonly used crown material.
Gold crowns are typically the longest lasting crowns and have the best fitting margins. Gold is very gentle on opposing teeth and requires a minimal reduction in tooth structure. On short molar teeth, gold crowns can provide the best retention due to the outstanding accuracy of the casting process.
When a tooth is missing and there are sturdy teeth in front of and behind the missing tooth a bridge can be an excellent option to replace the missing tooth. A bridge preparation requires removing tooth structure from the adjacent teeth in a similar manner to a crown preparation. A dental laboratory custom makes the bridge, which looks like three separate teeth. There are some scenarios where a bridge may be the most esthetic option. Bridges can be made out of several different materials ranging from porcelain to gold.
Dental implants are typically the preferred method to replace missing teeth. This can be the most conservative option for tooth replacement. The first step of getting an implant is a short surgery under local anesthetic. During this phase, the implant, which is a medical grade titanium cylinder with threads similar to a screw, is inserted into the bone where the tooth root used to be. After the surgical implant placement healthy new bone needs to form around the implant, this process takes three to six months. Once the body has accepted the implant, a process called osseointegration, the final restoration can be placed. The final restoration can be a crown, bridge, or even an attachment to retain a denture.
There are some cases where a tooth cannot be saved and must be extracted. Many of the teeth that are extracted are causing a toothache, have lost significant bone to periodontal disease, or have lost the majority of their tooth structure to decay or fracture. Tooth extractions are done under local anesthetic in most cases. The extraction should not be painful, but there will be soreness for a few days while the extraction site begins to heal. We reserve spots in our schedule to accommodate extractions for patients with a toothache. In many cases, it may be beneficial to place a bone graft at the time of extraction.
The most common bone grafting procedure is done immediately after a tooth extraction. In the months following a tooth extraction, the bone will begin to shrink in the area around the extraction site. In many cases, this limits the option of implant placement in the future. In situations where an implant will eventually be placed, it is often recommended to place a bone graft material into the extraction socket. Grafting at the time of extraction helps maintain the maximum volume of bone. This procedure adds around 15 minutes to an extraction appointment. This type of grafting requires a short follow up appointment around two weeks after the extraction.
Root Canal Therapy
Teeth that require root canal treatment usually have one of two problems; they are in the process of dying or they have already died. Many of these teeth become symptomatic and can cause severe pain and swelling. During root canal therapy the nerve and blood vessels are removed from the root and the canals are thoroughly cleaned with a disinfectant solution. The cleaned canals are then sealed up to prevent future infection. We don’t want anyone to endure a toothache and we can always find time in our schedule to get you out of pain.
Regular dental cleanings and checkups are the best way to keep your mouth healthy. We recommend most healthy patients getting a cleaning and check up twice a year. Patients with a high caries risk or periodontal disease are usually recommended to have cleaned more frequently. When patients have active periodontal disease the best treatment may begin with scaling and root planning, often referred to as a deep cleaning.
Scaling and Root Planning
Periodontal disease is an inflammatory process that destroys the bone around teeth. When a patient is diagnosed with active periodontal disease the first phase of treatment is called scaling and root planning. This process is a very detailed cleaning done under local anesthetic with a strong focus on cleaning and decontaminating the root surfaces below the gums. Most patients do this over two appointments.