One of the benefits we offer as a family practice is that we are able to provide a wide variety of services. We understand that patients have many individual needs regarding their dental treatment and we want you to feel good about your choice. As a result, we will discuss all treatment options and alternatives with you. Ultimately, it is you who will make the final decision. Together, we want to work with you to ensure that you are getting the best dental treatment possible.
Consultation and Initial Exam
You should have your teeth checked and cleaned twice a year, though your dentist or dental hygienist may recommend more frequent visits.
Regular dental exams and cleaning visits are essential in preventing dental problems and maintaining the health of your teeth and gums. At these visits, your teeth are cleaned and checked for cavities. Additionally, there are many other things that are checked and monitored to help detect, prevent, and maintain your dental health. These include:
- Medical history review: Knowing the status of any current medical conditions, new medications, and illnesses, gives us insight to your overall health and also your dental health.
- Examination of diagnostic x-rays (radiographs): Essential for detection of decay, tumors, cysts, and bone loss. X-rays also help determine tooth and root positions.
- Oral cancer screening: Check the face, neck, lips, tongue, throat, tissues, and gums for any signs of oral cancer.
- Gum disease evaluation: Check the gums and bone around the teeth for any signs of periodontal disease.
- Detection of tooth decay: All tooth surfaces will be checked for decay with special dental instruments.
- Removal of plaque and calculus (tartar): Plaque is a sticky, almost invisible film that forms on the teeth. It is a growing colony of living bacteria, food debris, and saliva. Calculus is hardened plaque that has been left on the tooth for sometime and is now firmly attached to the tooth surface. Calculus forms above and below the gumline, and can only be removed with special dental instruments.
- Teeth polishing: Removes stain and plaque that is not otherwise removed during toothbrushing and scaling.
- Oral hygiene recommendations: Review and recommend oral hygiene aids as needed (electric dental toothbrushes, special cleaning aids, fluorides, rinses, etc.).
- Review dietary habits: Your eating habits play a very important role in your dental health.
As you can see, a good dental exam and cleaning involves quite a lot more than just checking for cavities and polishing your teeth. We are committed to providing you with the best possible care, and to do so will require regular check-ups and cleanings.
We're all in favor of any advances in technology that allow us to provide better care, better service, and better overall results for our patients. That's why we've invested extra training and equipment-helping us see more clearly, diagnose more accurately, and perform procedures more precisely, comfortably and efficiently.
- Digital Radiographs (X-rays)
- DIAGNOdent Cavity Detection Technology
- Nitrous Oxide Sedation
- Patient Comfort Measures
- Rotary Endodontic Treatment
We welcome children to our practice! - After the initial examination, in some cases, it may be decided to refer a child to a pediatric dentist. This is a decision by the dentist based on his assessment of the child's individual needs.
Crowns are full coverage restorations that are used to cover a tooth that is likely to break, or is too broken down to be restored with a filling. Keep in mind that the jaw muscles are some of the strongest in the human body, and teeth are subjected to tremendous pressures. Crowns protect a weakened tooth, providing strength and protecting the tooth against breakage. Most crowns fabricated today are tooth-colored and blend into the natural dentition nicely.
This is an option for filling the space created by a missing tooth. It is formed to look like the missing tooth, and it takes its place in the mouth. The sides of a bridge use the two surrounding teeth for support, hence the name. A bridge replaces the missing tooth, both functionally and cosmetically. A bridge is generally made of porcelain or composite material and is anchored (cemented) permanently to a natural tooth adjacent to the missing tooth site. The benefit of this type of bridge is that it is fixed (not removable) and it is very sturdy.
Dentures and Partial Dentures
There are different types of dentures, but they share their common function. They replace teeth that have become loose or been lost due to decay. When enough teeth are lost due to bone loss or decay, we recommend partial or full dentures. No one enjoys losing their natural teeth, but you can still eat and talk regularly.
Dentures are used when most or all of the natural teeth are missing in one dental arch. Dentures are removable artificial teeth that are made to closely resemble the patients' original teeth.
Partial Dentures are a good solution for replacing one or more missing teeth, especially in complex dental situations where other replacement options are not possible. They are usually made of tooth-colored, artificial teeth combined with metal or flexible nylon clasps that hook onto adjacent natural teeth.
Implants are a great way to replace one or more missing teeth. They may also be great to support ill fitting dentures. A dental implant is an artificial root that is surgically placed into the jaw bone to replace a missing tooth. An artificial tooth is placed on the implant, giving the appearance and feel of a natural tooth. Implants are very stable, durable, and are the most aesthetically pleasing tooth replacement option.
Root Canal Treatment
The nerve in a tooth can become infected for many reasons. An area of deep decay could involve the nerve, or the accidental fracture of the tooth could expose the nerve. Sometimes, just a blow to the tooth can cause the nerve to die and become infected. In any case, when the nerve becomes infected, the nerve tissue must be removed by either extracting the tooth, or performing a root canal (endodontic treatment). Ideally, the root canal should be done before the infection has a chance to get into the bone, and the area develops extreme swelling and pain. Periodic dental examinations, and having your tooth checked when it first begins to hurt will usually help avoid severe complications. Typically, a crown is recommended for restoring a tooth that has had root canal therapy.
Although thorough brushing and flossing remove most food particles and bacteria from easy to reach tooth surfaces, they do not reach the deep grooves on chewing surfaces of teeth. More than 75 percent of dental decay begins in these deep grooves (called pits and fissures). Toothbrush bristles are too large to possibly fit and clean most of these areas. This is where sealants play an important role. A sealant is a thin plastic coating that covers and protects the chewing surfaces of molars, premolars, and any deep grooves or pits on teeth. Sealant material forms a protective, smooth barrier covering natural depressions and grooves in the teeth, making it much easier to clean and help keep these areas free of decay.
If you are self-conscious about your smile because of decayed, disfigured, or discolored teeth, you may be a good candidate for composite resins. A composite resin is a tooth-colored resin material that we use to restore teeth to an attractive, healthy state. We recommend composite resins as a healthier looking restorative option as compared to silver amalgam fillings
Composite Resin is also a material that is used when one needs cosmetic bonding on the front teeth. With this material, we are able to blend composite shades and shapes to match the original teeth nearly perfectly. The composite resin is bonded to the tooth and actually serves to support the remaining tooth structure, helping to prevent breakage and providing insulation against temperature changes. The final result is a tooth or teeth that look exactly as if they never had any dental work done at all.
Gum-Care Services (Periodontal Treatment)
Of course, a healthy foundation is essential in maintaining a healthy, happy smile. That's why your very first comprehensive exam includes a detailed look at your gums. Because periodontal disease is virtually painless in the early stages, it can be silently wreaking havoc in ways only a thorough professional exam can identify. So, we not only chart and diagnose everything we see, but we also aggressively arrest and treat any concerns immediately.
Our gum-care services include the following:
- Charting and Diagnostic Services
- Non-Surgical In Office Therapy: Scaling, Root Planing, Arrestin placement
- Ultrasonic cleaning
- Prescription medications and localized medicinal application as needed
You may not realize it, but even the tiniest spot of decay can mean trouble for your teeth. That is why we take such care to identify and fill cavities: it is the key to preventing all kinds of trouble down the road. In the past, diligent decay identification has required lengthy poking and prodding sessions. Unfortunately, even the best of such methods of decay detection are only 50% to 75% successful. Cavities can hide along fissure lines, or inside biting or occlusal surfaces. Our practice utilizes Diagnodent, a revolutionary new means of detecting cavities that keeps your exam fast, painless, easy and nearly imperceptible, while giving us incredibly accurate and thorough information.
The Diagnodent gives us a simple and comfortable tool for detecting decay with more thoroughness, timeliness, and accuracy. Not only does it help prevent the spread of decay, but it helps us to treat your teeth more conservatively as well. When we spot decay sooner, the necessary restorations are typically smaller and shallower, preserving more of the tooth.