Preventing tooth problems or loss is a top priority for Dr. Johnson and Dr. Watts. A regular and thorough examination of teeth, mouth and gums will idetify any problems that exist. Treating these problems will get your mouth back into optimal shape. At your initial examination, and at all check-ups we will check for oral cancer, tooth decay, broken, damaged or missing teeth, and gum disease.
Bonding involves adhering composite resin material that is matched to the color of the tooth, to the front of the tooth. This is done to repair damage done to the tooth by decay, to alter the alignment of the tooth, close gaps between the teeth, or for cosmetic purposes. First the surface of the tooth is microscopically roughened in order to accept the bonding and hold it. A gel is applied to micro etch the tooth surface, and a primer/bond agent is applied so the material adheres to the surface. Then the material itself is placed on the tooth and hardened with intense light. The composite resin material is shaped and polished to get a lustrous finish as a last step. A huge advantage of bonding is that, except in the case of decay, changes can be made to the appearance of the tooth/teeth without drilling or changing the tooth itself. It is completely reversable!
NON-SURGICAL GUM TREATMENTS
Sealants are used to fill in the narrow grooves and pits in a tooth that cannot be adequately cleaned by brushing. These pits and grooves will eventually develop cavities. Sealants are most often done on the six-year-molar teeth. These are the teeth that usually come in around age six and are, statistically, the most commonly decayed teeth....after all, what six-year-old is a great brusher? Sealants can be applied though to anytooth and at any age. Dr. Johnson, Dr. Watts or the hygienist will be able to identify which teeth will benefit the most from sealants. The dentist or hygienist will apply a coating to the tooth which will seal the pits and grooves and help prevent decay.
The gums, ligaments, and bone around the teeth form the foundation for ones teeth. All structures are also referred to as the periodontium. When the periodontium is not healthy, it jeopardizes the teeth just as a bad foundation would threaten the stability of a house. Signs of unhealthy periodontium (gum disease) may be as follows: gums that are red and bleed easily, persistent bad breath, gums that are pulled away from the tooth, loose teeth, and changes in the position or bite of the teeth. Any of these signs may mean something is wrong. With the proper care, however, it may be possible to return them to a healthy state. This is where appropriate gum treatments come in. If you're having a problem, come in and see us so we can take care of it right away. The treatment usually involves a deep cleaning or root planing done under a local anesthetic, along with local antibiotic agents. If the gum disease gets too severe it may need to be treated through surgery or extraction. This is why it is important to get it treated at the first sign of a problem.
Preventative dentistry deals with the preservation of healthy teeth and gums, and the prevention of dental caries and oral disease.
Contemporary Dentistry follows the ADA recommendations which recommends you visit Contemporary Dentistry every six months for a professional teeth cleaning (prophylaxis), fluoride treatment, periodontal evaluation, and oral cancer screening. X-rays should be taken when needed.
This is a focused beam of X-Ray particles through bone which produces an image on special film, showing the structure through which it passed. This gives the familiar black and white images that doctors and dentists use to diagnose problems. X-rays are a necessary part of the diagnostic process, and not to use them could lead to undiagnosed disease. Without an X-ray of the whole tooth, and supporting bone and gum tissues, there is no real way to detect infection or pathology that requires attention.
In our office we use digital radiography which allows us to take X-rays using 50-70% less radiation versus conventional X-rays. Coupled with computer monitorying, digital x-ray technology allows us to enhance the images for better diagnosis of any dental concerns.
Periodontics (Gum Disease)
Periodontics deals with diseases of the supporting structures of the teeth, including gums, tissues, and bones.
Periodontal diseases take on many different forms, but are usually a result of a coalescence of bacterial plaque biofilm accumulation of the gingiva and teeth, combined with host immuno-inflammatory mechanisms and other risk factors which lead to destruction of the supporting bone around natural teeth. Untreated, these diseases lead to alveolar bone loss and tooth loss, and to date continue to be the leading cause of tooth loss in adults.
With regular hygiene visits and periodontal visits periodontal disease can be prevented. Treatments include scaling and root planing and medication. The objective of scaling and root planing is to remove or eliminate the etiologic agents which cause inflammation: dental plaque, its products and calculus, thus helping to establish a stable periodontium.
Periodontal scaling procedures include the removal of plaque, calculus and stain from the crown and root surfaces of teeth, whereas root planing is a specific treatment that removes the roughened cementum and surface dentin that is impregnated with calculus, microorganisms and their toxins.
Scaling and root planing are often referred to as deep cleaning, and may be performed using ultrasonic instruments and hand instruments, such as periodontal scalers and curettes. We medicate after root planing and scaling to help treat any infection.
We also offer hydrofloss which is recommended for patients that have plaque and calculus which causes periodontal disease.
Restorative dentistry is the study, diagnosis and integrated effective management of diseases of teeth and their supporting structures. Restorative dentistry encompasses the dental specialties of endodontics, periodontics, and prosthodontics.
Dental composites, also called white fillings, are a group of restorative materials used in dentistry. Direct dental composites can be used for filling gaps (diastemas) between teeth using a shell-like veneer, minor reshaping of teeth or partial crowns on single teeth. The main advantage of a direct dental composite over traditional materials is improved aesthetics.
Restorative bridges or implants are used to replace missing teeth. A crown is used to cap or completely cover a tooth. Bridges are a permanent alternative to replace missing teeth.
Restore implants - Implants are titanium screws that can be used as an anchor for single or multiple missing teeth. The versatile prosthesis can be permanent or removable depending on your needs.
Dentures or partial dentures are removable methods of replacing a few missing teeth or all.
Bruxism is the medical term for the grinding of teeth or the clenching of jaws, especially during deep sleep or while under stress. We recommend a Nightguard to help reduce bruxing.