At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we’ve established a reputation for excellence based upon providing skilled and experienced state-of-the-art care. We’re dedicated to keeping pace with the latest technology and advances in treatment to provide our patients with the highest quality of care.
Despite the fact that dental enamel is stronger than bone and the hardest substance in your body, your teeth remain vulnerable to cavities and trauma. While dental fillings can provide an excellent way to repair a decayed or damaged tooth, they don’t always provide the right solution for rebuilding a strong, functional one. When too much tooth structure is compromised by dental decay, trauma, root canals, or habitual clenching and grinding, a filling just won’t do. In these situations, a dental crown, more commonly referred to as a cap, provides a better way to restore the involved tooth's integrity, function, and appearance.
Thanks to advances in dental ceramics, dental crowns today don’t have to be fabricated from metal or have a metal substrate. We can now fabricate all-ceramic crowns that offer the benefits of being metal-free, durable, long-lasting, and as beautiful as a natural tooth.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, patient care, comfort, and satisfaction are our top priorities. We personalize every treatment plan to address our patients’ oral healthcare needs and fulfill their cosmetic expectations of care.
Successful outcomes of care depend on careful treatment planning and paying close attention to a patient’s smile goals and expectations of care. Whether you need a dental crown or one of the many other services we provide, you can count on our office to explain your best options in care and to address all your questions and concerns every step of the way.
A dental crown is a full-coverage restoration that replicates the form and function of a natural tooth. It’s often recommended in the following the situations:
To repair and rebuild a tooth with extensive structural damage due to decay or trauma
To replace a large or broken filling
To restore a dental implant
To provide full coverage for the abutment teeth, serving as the supporting ends of a traditional dental bridge
To strengthen and protect a tooth that has undergone root canal therapy
To improve the look of an undersized, slightly misaligned, darkly stained, or misshapen tooth
To address bite discrepancies
Out of all the available materials for a full-coverage restoration today, metal-free crowns, also known as all-ceramic crowns, offer the most lifelike and biocompatible results. Once commonly referred to as “porcelain jackets,” today’s all-ceramic crowns are fabricated from the most advanced generations of cosmetically appealing, durable, and natural-looking materials. With strength comparable to traditional metal and porcelain fused to metal crowns, all-ceramic crowns provide a highly satisfying and long-lasting option in care.
As the name implies, the term all-ceramic crown means the crown's entire thickness is 100% ceramic. While in the past, porcelain or all-ceramic crowns looked better but did not offer the strength and durability of porcelain fused to metal crowns, it’s no longer the case. Thanks to advances in dental materials, they are stronger and more reliable than ever before.
Here are just some of the reasons we recommend an all-ceramic crown:
All-Ceramic crowns interact with light in much the same way as natural teeth and more closely mimic their translucency and luster
All-Ceramic crowns can be made thinner and require less reduction and preparation of the underlying tooth
All-Ceramic crowns are lighter in weight than dental crowns that incorporate a metal substructure
All-Ceramic crowns are also kinder to the surrounding soft tissues.
All-Ceramic crowns are resistant to stain and discoloration
All-Ceramic crowns are metal-free and safer for individuals with allergies or sensitivities to metal
All-Ceramic crowns resemble a natural tooth in its entirety and do not have a metal margin, which is often visible at the gumline
You can rest assured that your new ceramic crown will look naturally beautiful and blend seamlessly with your smile. Our office never compromises on service or materials; your new crown is milled from the latest generation of durable ceramic materials, for the most aesthetically pleasing and natural-looking results.
With the range of dental ceramics available today, which type gets selected to fabricate your new crown depends upon the tooth's location, the stresses on that tooth, and the case's aesthetic requirements. Certain types of all-ceramic crowns are more suited to provide the strength needed for back teeth, while other types better address a front tooth's aesthetic requirements. Although Feldspathic porcelain has been traditionally used in the fabrication of porcelain crowns, today, newer generations of dental ceramics provide options that work for the front teeth as well as the back teeth.
Some of the most popular and effective choices include the following:
Lithium Disilicate Porcelain Crowns
Leucite Reinforced Pressable Porcelain Crowns
Solid or Monolithic Zirconia
High Translucent Zirconia.
With multiple types of all-ceramic crowns to choose from, selecting the right material for an attractive, durable, and long-lasting restorative outcome is a crucial decision.
At the office Caring Bear Dental, we carefully analyze your smile's functional and aesthetic requirements to formulate a treatment plan that's right for you. You can rely on our office to recommend the type of ceramic restoration that best suits the unique needs of your smile while fulfilling your expectations of care.
When it comes to helping patients achieve a smile, they feel confident sharing with the world; you can depend on the office of Caring Bear Dental for the highest quality of care. We strive to help every patient maintain optimal oral health and enjoy the benefits of a smile that looks great and functions at its best. Our practice maintains a position at the forefront of advances in dentistry to offer patients effective and satisfying solutions for improving the look, feel, and function of their smiles.
We understand the functional and aesthetic requirements of restoring smiles and provide skilled care that successfully combines the art and science of dentistry to achieve outstanding treatment outcomes. At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we offer a comprehensive range of services to address all your family’s oral healthcare needs.
For more information on our office or to schedule an appointment for care, give us a call today.
While a dental filling is designed to replace a portion of a decayed or damaged tooth, a dental crown offers full coverage to restore the tooth’s entire outer surface. A well-fitting dental crown not only protects and strengthens the underlying tooth structure, but it also restores the tooth’s appearance and function.
The procedure for getting an all-ceramic crown is much like the procedure for getting any other type of crown. In all cases, the tooth needs to be prepared, an impression taken, and a permanent crown cemented into place. A single all-ceramic crown can typically be fabricated over the course of two visits. However, with CAD/CAM technology, a same-day crown can be fabricated from start to finish in a single visit. With the first approach, a temporary crown is typically worn until the second visit, when the permanent restoration is placed. As with every treatment plan, our office will explain your best options in care.
As the name implies, a temporary crown is only worn for a short time until the permanent crown is placed. A temporary crown is typically fabricated from durable tooth-colored dental acrylics. While designed to protect the underlying tooth between appointments, and until your new permanent crown gets placed, a temporary crown is also fabricated to look like a natural tooth and maintain the look of your smile.
While you should feel better having an attractive and functional tooth to restore your smile, your tooth may feel a little sensitive following treatment. This initial sensitivity will subside. We take great care to make sure your new restoration looks great, fits well, and your bite is perfect. However, we’re always happy to make any minor adjustments to ensure your comfort.
With some exceptions, teeth with root canal procedures are typically restored and protected from further damage with a full-coverage crown. Based on what’s best for your smile, our office will recommend the most appropriate restoration to maintain the health and longevity of your tooth following a root canal procedure.
A dental crown is a long-term restoration that, if properly cared for, can serve you well for many years to come. Once your new crown is placed, it requires the same brushing, flossing, and periodic checkups as your natural teeth. Avoid biting your fingernails and chewing on hard or sticky objects such as ice, pencils, or taffy, which can damage or loosen your crown. Remember, clenching and grinding your teeth puts excessive pressure on both natural teeth and dental restorations. Unless treated, this habit can compromise the longevity and integrity of your dental work, including crowns.
Although your new all-ceramic crown restores the tooth's strength, form, and function, you can still develop dental disease in the absence of proper care. To prevent gum disease and tooth decay, it’s essential to brush and floss as instructed and see our office for routine checkups, cleanings, and care.
How long a dental crown lasts depends on various factors, including your level of oral care, diet, and oral habits. While the standard answer is that dental crowns can last anywhere from 5 to 15 years, existing literature confirms that most dental crowns remain in place at 15 to 20 years.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we strive to provide the highest quality of care to address all your dental needs. Once we’ve had the opportunity to examine your smile, we can give you a clear picture of any dental issues that are present, along with a quote for how much treatment will be. The cost of dental crowns can vary a little, depending on the type of crown and its location. Our goals are to provide the highest quality of care and help patients begin treatment without additional financial stress or delay. We’re always happy to answer all your questions on dental insurance coverage, available financing, and payment plans.
Coverage for all-ceramic crowns depends on your dental insurance plan. Today, many dental plans provide some level of coverage for all-ceramic crowns. At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we work with patients to optimize their dental benefits and get the care they need to maintain healthy and beautiful smiles!
CEREC® is an advanced dental technology, which allows for the preparation and placement of same day ceramic restorations. Offering the utmost in terms of quality and convenience, this high-tech system eliminates the need for multiple dental visits, temporary crowns, as well as messy dental impressions.
Using the CEREC® method, the tooth to be crowned is scanned, a restoration is digitally designed and then a permanent ceramic restoration is precisely milled in the dental office on that very same day.
The process utilizes CAD/CAM technology, or computer aided design and computer aided manufacturing. A CEREC® single visit crown offers much more than a convenient approach to getting a dental crown. It is a high quality, naturally beautiful and extremely durable, permanent dental restoration.
Today, there's no need to merely imagine how nice it would be to have a dental crown fabricated in a single visit. With CEREC technology and advanced systems of care, multiple trips to the dentist are a thing of the past! Now, one appointment is all it takes for our skilled and experienced dentist to design, fabricate, and place a naturally beautiful and long-lasting same-day crown. And, best of all, unlike conventional methods of care, you won't have to endure messy dental impressions, wear a temporary crown, or wait weeks for your permanent restoration to come back from the laboratory.
Offering a level of precision and comfort that exceeds conventional methods of care, CEREC technology is nothing short of amazing! Advanced CAD/CAM technology, which stands for computer-aided design and computer-aided manufacturing, enables our dentist to translate images from an optically scan tooth into a 3D virtual model upon which a custom crown can be digitally designed. Once this step is done, the detailed specs are then wirelessly transmitted to a chairside 3D milling machine to fabricate your new ceramic crown while you wait!
With conventional methods of care, a dental crown can take two to three visits to fabricate and place. However, thanks to the benefits of CEREC technology, we can prepare a tooth, then design, fabricate, and place your new crown, all while you wait.
With CEREC same-day crowns, there's none of the mess of conventional dental impressions, wearing dental temporaries, or waiting for the final crown to come back from the lab. Once the prepared tooth is optically scanned and the restoration digitally designed, your new crown can be milled from the highest quality of dental ceramics that very same visit.
CEREC same-day crowns and restorations are fabricated from the highest quality of dental ceramics. Because dental porcelain reflects light in much the same way as dental enamel, your new crown will look flawless, completely natural, and blend seamlessly with your smile.
A CEREC same-day crown offers much more than a convenient approach to getting a dental crown. It is also a high quality, naturally beautiful, extremely durable, and long-lasting dental restoration! The fact is, with proper oral hygiene and routine dental care your new crown will serve your smile well for many years to come.
When teeth are missing, a series of changes that can impact your overall dental health and jaw function may begin to develop. The adjacent teeth may start to drift or tilt into the space, and teeth in the opposing jaw may start to shift toward the area of the missing tooth. It is therefore important to replace either the single tooth or multiple teeth that are missing from this area. One of the best options to prevent the consequences of shifting teeth and to restore full function to a small edentulous section in the mouth is a dental bridge.
A dental bridge replaces the missing teeth with artificial teeth called “pontics,” and is supported on the ends by prepared natural teeth. Once fabricated and fitted a dental bridge will be permanently “fixed,” or cemented into place. Like crowns, bridges can be made of either porcelain baked on to a metal substrate or many of the new ceramic materials that have been developed.
A dental cleaning is a procedure done by a dentist or dental hygienist to get into hard to reach areas of the gums and teeth in order to remove bacteria and food debris. Dental cleanings should be scheduled at least once per year, so that patients can have plaque and tartar scraped off of their teeth. Plaque is a hard substance that adheres to the surface of a tooth. Too much plaque and tartar can cause gum disease and problems with teeth. A dentist has special tools that can remove this plaque and tartar so that teeth are fresh and clean again. Because plaque and tartar buildup happen on a daily basis, patients should still brush and floss regularly.
During a dental cleaning the dentist will get inside the hard to reach areas and clean out the spaces in between the gums and teeth. If the patient is suffering from gum disease or early gum disease, a deep cleaning, periodontal scaling or root planing may be administered. In this procedure, the dentist gets into the flaps of gum under the tooth and into the pockets where bacteria can hide. A patient with pockets deeper than 4 mm is usually recommended to have a root planing or scaling. Patients with periodontal disease may need to have more than one cleaning per year.
When dental decay compromises a tooth's structural integrity, a filling gets placed to rebuild its natural form and restore its strength and function.
Because tooth decay, also known as dental caries, remains one of the most prevalent chronic diseases affecting both children and adults worldwide, procedures to place fillings are routinely performed each and every day.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we provide precise and gentle treatment and maintain a position at the forefront of advances in care to provide patients with the highest quality of aesthetically pleasing and durable dental fillings.
According to archaeological findings, for as long as dental problems have existed, there have been efforts to provide emergency and restorative care. In fact, attempts to place dental fillings have been found in the skeletal remains of people who lived around the year 8000 BC. However, it wasn't until thousands and thousands of years later, in the 19th century, that a variety of metal fillings, including dental amalgam, appeared on the scene. Although gold achieved status as a popular restorative material, it was soon apparent that amalgam fillings, consisting of a mixture of mercury and an alloy composed of silver, tin, and copper, offered a less expensive, durable, and simpler alternative.
Until recent decades, the vast majority of dental fillings remained silver-colored, amalgam restorations. However, as dentistry has evolved in the last 50 years, new filling materials have been developed. While amalgam fillings are long-lasting and durable, today's newer materials offer the benefits of being mercury-free, metal-free, and much more aesthetic. These "tooth-colored or white fillings" invisibly restore the form and function of the involved tooth, while seamlessly blending in with the remaining tooth structure and the entire smile.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we tailor treatment to address specific dental needs and expectations of care. As with all the services our practice provides, we'll explain all your options in care, including the type of dental filling materials we offer to restore your tooth. Our goals are to gently remove the dental decay and the damaged tooth structure and then rebuild your tooth's form and function while providing you healthy, durable, long-lasting, and cosmetically pleasing results.
While traditional dental materials like gold and amalgam have been in use for over a century, recent advances in dental technology have made a more expansive and improved selection of restorative choices widely available. Beyond offering strength and durability, these new filling materials provide aesthetically pleasing and natural-looking results.
Composite fillings, which are frequently referred to as either "tooth-colored fillings" or "white fillings," consist of a combination of biocompatible resins and finely ground, glass-like filler materials that become strong and durable when set. Available in a complete range of natural-looking shades, composite fillings offer a cosmetically pleasing alternative to traditional "silver" fillings. Composite resins are also used in dental bonding procedures to improve a tooth's color or shape, mask defects, or close minor gaps between teeth.
Composite fillings adhere to natural tooth structure through a bonding process, which also serves to seal and strengthen the tooth. Beyond providing a close match to your natural tooth color, a composite filling does not require removing of as much tooth structure for placement, nor are they subject to expansion or contraction with temperature changes as is the case with dental amalgams. However, composite restorations can be more vulnerable to wear and staining and may require replacement down the road.
For many years, amalgam fillings represented the standard of care for restoring decayed teeth. While they don't offer the cosmetic appeal of other types of filling materials, amalgam restorations are strong, durable, and less likely than some other types of fillings to break or wear down.
Another type of white filling material, glass ionomer cements bond to the tooth's surface to provide a tight seal between the tooth and surrounding oral environment. Besides offering a natural-looking restoration, glass ionomer cements slowly release fluoride to strengthen and help protect the involved tooth from future decay. Since they are not as durable or wear-resistant as other filling materials, glass ionomers are most frequently used to treat baby teeth, cavities near the gumline, and in temporary fillings.
Ceramic fillings, inlays, and onlays are fabricated from the highest quality of dental porcelain and ceramics. As the most stain and wear-resistant option in tooth-colored fillings, these restorations offer durable, attractive, and long-lasting results. While "direct" fillings such as dental amalgam and composite fillings get placed immediately after the tooth is prepared, "indirect" fillings such as inlays or onlays get fabricated outside of the mouth before insertion and cementation or bonding.
Far less common these days and more expensive than any of the other materials, gold fillings remain excellent restorations. With excellent physical and chemical properties, gold fillings are strong, long-lasting, kind to the surrounding tissues, and remain stable over time.
Once our office has a chance to assess your smile, we'll advise you of our findings and outline a comprehensive treatment plan to help ensure your smile is healthy and functions at its best. If any tooth decay is detected, we'll schedule appointments to treat those cavities and place the fillings or restorations that are needed.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, patient care and comfort are our top priorities. While treating cavities and placing fillings are among the most routine procedures in dentistry, our office understands you have questions and concerns and will keep you well informed every step of the way.
Treating a cavity involves the precise and gentle removal of decayed and damaged tooth structure and any preparation of the remaining tooth structure needed to secure your new filling. Although every patient and every smile is different, you can expect your visit to take about an hour.
In most cases, this visit is performed under local anesthesia. As the work gets performed, your tooth is completely numb, and you should not feel any discomfort. A dental drill, dental laser, or air abrasion technology can be used to remove decay. Once the cavity gets excavated, and healthy tooth structure remains, it's time to place the filling. The type of dental filling material being used determines the manner of placement. Composite fillings, glass ionomer cements, and amalgam fillings are typically placed right away. However, in the case of an extensive cavity, a tiny palliative dressing and a temporary filling may be placed. Whatever type of filling is used, our office will check the fit, do any necessary polishing, and meticulously adjust the bite to ensure your optimal comfort and function.
For patients who are anxious about dental work, you can rest assured the office of Caring Bear Dental is mindful of your needs. As skilled and experienced providers of care, we pride ourselves on providing gentle dentistry and do all we can to make your visit comfortable and stress-free. While we perform dental procedures under local anesthesia, we're also happy to discuss options in dental sedation.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, our goal is to help our patients enjoy optimal oral health and to keep them well informed every step of the way.
Immediately after the placement of a new filling, it's essential to keep the following in mind:
Until the anesthesia wears off
Immediately following your dental visit, you may experience a period of lingering numbness. Normal sensation typically returns within an hour or two. However, until the anesthetic has completely worn off, it's essential to protect yourself from unintentionally biting or injuring your lips, cheeks, gums, or tongue. Be mindful of chewing, drinking hot beverages, or smoking.
Now that your tooth has been restored and rebuilt, it may feel slightly different
While we take the utmost care to polish your new filling and make sure the bite is correct, on rare occasions, a patient may feel additional minor smoothing or further bite adjustment is required.
You may experience short-term sensitivity
It's perfectly normal for a tooth to feel a little sensitive following the placement of a filling. You may experience a twinge when eating cold or hot foods and beverages. This sensitivity should subside by itself within a few days. If your sensitivity worsens, you experience ongoing pain or develop any other symptoms; please contact our office.
Caring for your new restoration
Our office uses the latest generations of strong and durable filling materials. With proper oral hygiene and routine care, your new filling should last for many years to come. However, in cases of extensive tooth decay or injury to the underlying tooth, even the best restoration may need to be replaced, or further dental work may be needed down the road.
We're passionate about what we do and dedicated to providing the highest quality of care. If you have any additional questions or concerns, feel free to contact our office.
If the pleasure of eating a delicious bowl of ice cream or sipping a soothing cup of tea gets overshadowed by dental pain that makes you wince; it's time to contact our office. As skilled providers of care, we'll determine what's causing your discomfort and perform the treatment required to alleviate your symptoms and get you back on the road to oral health.
Cavities develop because of an infectious process that causes progressive damage to tooth structure. Despite starting as a pinpoint defect on the outermost enamel layer of your tooth, untreated dental decay progressively compromises more and more healthy tooth structure as it works its way to the inner layers of your tooth.
Yes, you can still develop tooth decay on other surfaces of the tooth, around the margins of an old filling, or in fewer instances, recurrent decay underneath it. For this reason, it's essential to maintain excellent oral hygiene, a diet low in sugary beverages and sweets, and be sure to visit our office for routine checkups and care. While tooth decay is second only to the common cold in frequency, it's almost entirely preventable.
We value the time and comfort of our patients. If cavities are located on adjacent teeth, or in the same section of your smile, it may be possible to treat more than one tooth during your visit. However, how much is done each visit depends on several factors. We keep our patients well informed and tailor every treatment plan and visit to address their unique needs.
Addressing concerns on the presence of elemental mercury in silver fillings, the American Dental Association (ADA), The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the FDA, and the World Health Organization have all stated that amalgam restorations do not pose a risk to health. However, individuals with allergies or sensitivities to the metals in dental amalgam are advised to pursue other restorative options.
Dental fillings are performed under local anesthesia to help ensure your comfort throughout the entire procedure. The involved tooth remains completely numb for the extent of your visit. Within one or two hours after the procedure is completed, the local anesthetic will gradually wear off, and normal sensations return.
A tooth-colored composite filling is fully hardened and set by the end of your visit. However, we may advise you to wait a couple of hours until the local anesthesia has completely worn off. This advice is to help ensure you don't accidentally bite your lip, cheek, or tongue while still numb.
The lifetime of a dental filling varies depending on the type of material used. While popular dental materials can last a decade or more with proper care, they can degrade over time, wear down, or even break. When this happens, you may experience some tooth sensitivity, a jagged edge, or a loose or dislodged piece of filling material. Whatever the case may be, it's essential to get the filling replaced before the tooth sustains further damage or other consequences arise. Beyond taking good care of your smile we can help ensure the longevity of your fillings, our office regularly checks the status of your existing fillings as part of a routine checkup exam.
Dental fillings are an essential investment that serves to preserve and protect the health of your smile. With that said, how much a filling costs depends on the number of surfaces of the tooth involved and the filling material that is used. Amalgam restorations are the most economical. While tooth-colored composite fillings have a slightly higher cost, they offer the added benefits of being metal-free and much more aesthetically pleasing. Ceramic fillings, inlays, and onlays are more expensive than the preceding options but provide outstanding, long-lasting, and natural-looking results.
Dental insurances typically cover the cost of dental fillings. While we work with you to maximize your insurance benefits, there may still be an out-of-pocket expense. At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we strive to help you begin care without any additional financial stress or delay.
Thanks to advances in dental materials, technology, and methods of care, it’s easier than ever before to replace missing teeth with the most natural-looking and aesthetically pleasing treatment outcomes. While dental implants and fixed bridgework provide effective and satisfying solutions for missing teeth, removable dentures remain a tried and true method for reestablishing a complete smile.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we fabricate dentures from the highest grade of dental materials for a precise and comfortable fit. Our dentures are meticulously designed to rebuild beautiful smiles and support natural facial contours while enabling patients to speak, smile, and chew with renewed confidence and ease.
We’re dedicated to helping patients to enjoy the benefits of a beautiful smile and take pride in offering personalized solutions to address their dental needs, lifestyle, and budget.
According to recent statistics, it’s estimated that across the country, over 175 million adults have lost at least one tooth, and close to 40 million are missing all of their teeth. In most of these cases, tooth loss is the end result of extensive dental decay, advanced gum disease, a traumatic injury, a congenital anomaly, or associated with a medical condition.
In addition to the psychological and social consequences having embarrassing gaps in your smile often produce, missing teeth can affect your ability to speak clearly and eat a satisfying and nutritious diet. Left unaddressed, missing teeth can also cause gradual changes to your appearance and the alignment of your remaining teeth. These changes not only affect your bite, but they have the potential to create more unsightly and unhealthy gaps in your smile. Furthermore, without the support of a complete set of teeth, facial contours may also begin to look more sagged and haggard over time.
While it’s never too late to rebuild a complete and beautiful smile, it’s always best to replace missing teeth sooner than later. Both partial and full dentures from the office of Caring Bear Dental offer an effective and satisfying solution for reestablishing a complete smile.
Dentures are removable appliances that are designed to precisely and comfortably rest on top of the gums that cover the jawbones. They consist of natural-looking artificial teeth set in a supportive base. In addition to offering a cost-effective solution for the replacement of missing teeth, dentures are quite versatile. They can be used to replace either a few teeth that have been lost or all of the teeth in the upper or lower jaws.
While conventional bridgework and dental implants offer fixed solutions for rebuilding complete smiles, partial and full dentures are removable oral appliances. This statement means it’s possible to take dentures out of the mouth to clean and maintain the health of the underlying tissues and any remaining teeth, as well as clean the dentures themselves, or remove them while sleeping.
You can rest assured that rebuilding your smile is in the best of hands at the office of Caring Bear Dental. As skilled and experienced providers of care, we’ll carefully evaluate all aspects of your smile, the health and integrity of any remaining teeth, along with the surrounding tissues and the supporting bone to develop a treatment plan that satisfies the functional and aesthetic requirements of your case.
The two main types of removable dentures are full dentures and partial dentures. Which of these types offers the best solution for your smile depends on how many natural teeth are still present in your mouth and the health of these remaining teeth. While a partial denture can offer an effective solution in cases where some sturdy natural teeth remain, you may be a candidate for a complete denture when all the upper or lower teeth are missing or require extraction.
Full dentures, also known as complete dentures, can effectively replace all the upper teeth, lower teeth, or both the upper and lower teeth. As with other types of dental solutions, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach for every case. The ultimate design, fabrication, and insertion of a full denture can vary based upon a patient’s specific needs.
This type of denture is fabricated and placed after all of the remaining teeth are removed, and the surrounding tissues have adequately healed. Fabricating a full denture when healing is complete supports a precise and comfortable fit.
With an immediate denture, a patient does not have to go without teeth while waiting for complete healing of the extraction sites. Although an immediate denture offers the advantage of not having to go without teeth for any length of time, it can require a reline and adjustments as the tissues remodel and heal. In some cases, for optimal comfort and fit, a conventional denture may eventually be required.
An overdenture is a type of complete denture that receives added stability and support from special attachments that are secured to the remaining underlying teeth or specialized dental implants.
As the name implies, this type of denture attaches to a select number of strategically placed implants in the upper or lower jaw. These small surgical posts provide precise points of attachment for the overlying denture and add a significant measure of stability and retention.
In situations where some sturdy teeth remain, partial dentures can offer an effective solution for the replacement of missing teeth. Partial dentures typically achieve adequate retention and stability with clasps or precision attachments on the teeth adjacent to the edentulous areas (the spaces formerly occupied by the missing teeth).
Removable partial dentures can fill the void left by individual missing teeth and multiple ones to restore the look and function of a complete smile. At the same time a partial denture fills the gaps left by missing teeth; it also stabilizes the dentition and bite and prevents unwanted drifting of the remaining natural teeth.
As with full dentures, partial denture design and fabrication varies based on a patient’s specific needs. With advances in dental materials and technology, partial denture wearers have more options than ever before. Today, a partial denture’s supportive framework can be fabricated from various materials, including cast metal, flexible resins, and hybrid materials.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we’re dedicated to building healthy and beautiful smiles. As your trusted partner in care, you can depend on our office to design and fabricate a denture that will look good, fit comfortably, and serve you well for years to come.
Fabricating an attractive, well-fitting, and long-lasting denture requires a comprehensive understanding of oral function, facial aesthetics, dental materials, and appliance design. At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we maintain a position at the forefront of advances in care and successfully combine the art and science of dentistry to provide patients with outstanding treatment outcomes.
Once we’ve had an opportunity to review your medical and dental history, assess all aspects of your smile, and discuss your expectation of care, we’ll discuss the best options for restoring and rebuilding your smile.
Based upon a comprehensive analysis of your case, including advanced diagnostic imaging, we’ll advise you if any dental work, additional procedures, or extractions are required prior to the fabrication of a partial or complete denture. It’s essential that any remaining teeth are healthy and have sufficient bone support. Sometimes, a pre-prosthetic procedure to improve the tissue anatomy and ensure a denture’s optimal fit is recommended.
Having a denture or set of dentures made is a sophisticated process involving dental impressions, framework try-ins, selecting the right shade, shape, and size of the artificial teeth, and making sure that the bite and all aspects of oral function are comfortable and healthy. Whether it takes a single visit or a few visits to fabricate a partial or complete denture, a satisfying and healthy outcome relies on the careful execution of every step in care.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, our patients' care and comfort are our top priorities. Our goal is to help patients enjoy optimal oral health and to keep them well informed every step of the way.
Adjusting to wearing a new denture
Getting used to wearing a new denture, especially a full denture, can take a little time. It’s not unusual to need some minor adjustments as you begin to speak, chew, and function with your new teeth. It can take a few adjustments to fit completely and feel comfortable. If you have a sore spot, try to wear the denture at least the day before your adjustment visit. In this way, we can see exactly where we need to relieve the area causing your irritation.
More saliva than usual
One of the natural responses to a new denture is for your mouth to produce more saliva. Not to worry, this is only a temporary reaction. The flow of saliva gradually decreases back to a normal level.
Speaking with ease
While it may seem challenging to speak clearly at first with a new denture, that feeling will pass within a few days. It’s important to keep talking, as usual, to allow yourself to adapt to your new set of teeth. You can help things along by reading some passages from printed materials or a computer out loud.
Getting used to eating with a denture
If this is your first denture, it can also take some time to adapt to eating with your new prosthesis. Getting used to eating with a full denture is typically more challenging than doing so with a partial denture. It’s best to start with soft foods and to avoid chewing on just one side. Your tongue, lips, cheeks, and soft tissues will soon adapt to chewing with your new denture, and from then on, you’ll be able to eat with ease.
Taking care of your dentures
It’s essential to keep your denture clean! Rinse your dentures after eating and brush them daily. In this way, you can prevent stains and bacteria from accumulating on your new set of teeth. It helps to use a brush designed for dentures. Also, remember to soak your dentures in water when you’re not wearing them and at least once a week in the recommended denture cleaner.
Brush any remaining teeth as well as your gums to keep them clean and the tissues healthy and firm. If you wear an upper denture, rinse and gently clean the roof of your mouth as well.
Take your dentures out at bedtime. This practice gives the gums and the jawbone a chance to rest, helping to prevent irritation and infection as well as bone resorption (shrinkage).
Due to the status of the underlying tissues and other factors, there are some cases where full dentures benefit from additional means of retention. While denture adhesive is often sufficient, full dentures that are implant-supported or clip onto special attachments offer added stability and retention.
Maintaining oral health and overall well-being involves routine checkups and care. At these visits, we not only check the fit and condition of your dentures but we also perform a comprehensive exam to check the status of any remaining teeth as well as assess the health of all of the soft and hard tissues in and around the oral cavity.
Over time, the tissues supporting the denture can change. As the shape and contours of these tissues shrink or remodel, your denture may not fit as comfortably or feel as stable as it once did. A separate procedure, which is known as a reline, may be recommended.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we’re dedicated to providing the highest quality of care. If you have any additional questions or concerns about your new dentures, feel free to contact our office.
Today, it’s easier than ever to replace missing teeth and achieve natural-looking, durable, and long-lasting results! Depending a patient’s dental needs, lifestyle, expectations of care, and budget, choices can include conventional fixed bridgework, dental implants, or removable partial and complete dentures. At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we’ll discuss all your options in care and answer all your questions as you choose the solution that’s right for you.
With advances in dental materials and technology, today’s dentures are more comfortable and realistic-looking than ever before.
Whether you wear partial or complete dentures, it’s essential to see the dentist for routine care. Besides checking the fit and condition of your dentures and making any necessary adjustments, you’ll also receive a comprehensive exam to check on the health of any remaining teeth as well the soft and hard tissues in and around the oral cavity.
A same-day denture offers an accelerated design and fabrication process that allows a patient to go from impression taking to denture insertion in a single day.
For patients who don’t want to wait after having teeth extracted, an immediate denture can be inserted the same day your teeth are removed. Sometime later you may need the denture reline to address any changes in its fit once the extraction sites have completely healed.
While no one wants to drop or break a partial or complete denture, accidents do happen. The good news is that in some cases, your partial or complete denture is reparable. It all depends on the extent of the damage. Don’t hesitate to contact our office if you’ve broken or damaged your denture. We’re happy to help.
The simple act of taking your partial denture in and out can cause certain types of metal clasps to loosen over time. When you come in for your checkup visit or contact our office for an adjustment, we’ll assess the fit of your partial and tighten the clasps for improved stability and comfort.
While rebuilding a complete smile is a worthwhile investment, our office is sensitive to the costs involved in dental care. We customized care and will discuss which treatment options address your needs, lifestyle, and budget. How much a new denture will cost depends on the type of the prosthesis, its design, and the materials used to fabricate the supportive base, teeth, and clasps or precision attachments. Dentures that include the placement of dental implants for added retention and stability typically involve additional costs.
If you have dental insurance, your coverage may include a new or replacement set of dentures. Our staff is happy to review your coverage with you to ensure you are maximizing your insurance benefits while minimizing any out of pocket expenses.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we provide an extensive range of dental services, including the latest and most effective methods to help patients with missing teeth rebuild complete and beautiful smiles. As skilled and experienced professionals, we recognize that every patient is different, and every smile is unique. We’re passionate about what we do and take great pride in providing personalized treatment plans while treating our patients as valued partners in care.
Digital radiography utilizes computer technology and digital sensors for the acquisition, viewing, storage, and sharing of radiographic images. It offers several advantages over the older traditional film based methods of taking x-rays. The most significant of these advantages is that digital radiography reduces a patient’s exposure to radiation. Other benefits are that images can be viewed instantly after being taken, can be seen simultaneously as needed by multiple practitioners, and can be easily shared with other offices. Digital x-rays are also safer for the environment as they do not require any chemicals or paper to develop.
An electronic pad, known as a sensor is used instead of film to acquire a digital image. After the image is taken, it goes directly into the patient’s file on the computer. Once it is stored on the computer, it can be easily viewed on a screen, shared, or printed out.
Dental emergencies can come about in any number of ways. Your discomfort may be due to an injury to the oral facial area, the acute flare up of a longstanding problem, or the result of the sudden onset of seemingly inexplicable pain. Whatever the case may be, urgent dental care is needed to provide you with relief and to avoid any further consequences to your oral health or function, as well as your overall well being.
There are many reasons to seek emergency dental care, including severe toothaches, chipped or fractured teeth, a dental abscess, impacted teeth, loose or broken fillings, lost or dislodged crowns, broken dentures and more. While the pain of a toothache is one of the more common reasons that patients come to our dental office for emergency dental care, we also promptly treat emergencies that are not necessarily painful like crowns that have been dislodged and broken dentures that leave embarrassing gaps in one’s smile.
Whether your dental emergency is painful, if it affects the appearance of your smile, or if you suspect that an infection is present, contact our office immediately for care. We will make every effort to see you as promptly as possible.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, our patients' care and well-being are our top priorities. Every member of our skilled and experienced team strives to ensure patient comfort and a stress-free dental experience. Our dedication to the consistent provision of compassionate and personalized attention along with gentle, precise care has earned our office the respect and trust of our patients.
While we do everything we can to preserve the integrity of your natural smile, it's sometimes necessary to extract a tooth to protect your oral health and overall well-being.
A "baby" or deciduous tooth that is over retained (reluctant to fall out), severely decayed, or damaged
In most cases, a baby tooth will fall out as scheduled as the underlying permanent one begins to erupt into place. However, occasionally a baby tooth continues to remain firmly attached to the bone. Either the roots of the baby tooth have failed to resorb and shrink as intended, or the baby tooth has become anklylosed and fused to the supporting bone. The problem is that over-retained baby teeth can disrupt the development and alignment of your child's smile. As we monitor your child's smile as they grow, we'll advise you if and when an extraction of a baby tooth is required to facilitate the eruption of its underlying permanent successor.
A permanent tooth that has extensive decay and is deemed non-restorable
Beginning as a simple pinpoint defect on the outermost enamel layer of your tooth, untreated dental decay will continue to compromise healthy tooth structure as it works its way to the inner layers of the tooth. Without proper care, a cavity can lead to significant damage to tooth structure, irreversible damage to the nerve of the tooth, a dental infection, and serious consequences to your oral health and overall well-being. When the tooth has sustained far too much structural damage and cannot be restored, a dental extraction may be required.
A permanent tooth that has been severely fractured or cracked and can not be restored
There are many different types of chips, cracks, and fractures that can affect your teeth. The extent of the damage that it causes will determine if there is enough intact tooth structure to save the tooth and the type of treatment required. In cases where too much tooth structure or the root of a tooth has also been compromised, an extraction may be necessary.
Advanced gum disease that has significantly compromised the tooth's supporting tissues
The most common cause of tooth loss in adults is gum disease. When left untreated, periodontal disease, which affects the hard and soft tissues supporting your teeth, can lead to gingival pocket formation, gum recession, and diminishing alveolar bone. As advanced and untreated gum disease progresses, the teeth ultimately loosen, fall out, or require extractions.
Poorly positioned, impacted, or decayed wisdom teeth
Wisdom teeth, which are also known as the third molars, are the last permanent teeth to develop in the oral cavity and the final ones to come into place. However, as is often the case, many wisdom teeth do not have sufficient room to erupt, are not developing correctly, develop extensive decay, or cause issues for the adjacent teeth and the surrounding tissues. Although the extraction of wisdom teeth sometimes gets recommended for an older patient, the early removal of troublesome or potentially problematic third molars in young adults is more often the case.
A tooth size to jaw size discrepancy often results in a crowded and misaligned smile. More simply put, the upper and lower jaws are not large enough to accommodate all the permanent teeth. As part of an orthodontic treatment plan to optimally align teeth and establish an attractive, healthy, and functional bite, the extraction of select permanent teeth may be required.
Whatever the reasons for a dental extraction may be, you can rest assured that your care is in the best of hands at our office. As the first step in care, our dentist will review your medical and dental histories and discuss any special considerations in care.
It's essential to inform our office of any existing medical conditions or medications you are currently taking. In some situations, extra precautions, including premedication with antibiotics, a change in medication, and a medical clearance may be required. Follow all our pre-surgical directives and let us know if you are sick or have developed other symptoms on the day of surgery.
Our goal is to reduce any anxiety and help ensure patient comfort whenever a tooth extraction is necessary. In advance of the procedure, we'll discuss any medical considerations or precautions and go over our pre-surgical instructions. We'll also discuss post-surgical recommendations, including whether replacing the extracted tooth or teeth is needed and the best options in care.
To thoroughly assess the tooth and the type of extraction required, we perform a comprehensive examination and take digital radiographs as indicated. Extractions are typically categorized as either "simple" or "surgical extractions."
When the tooth is clearly visible in the mouth and the root anatomy is not extensively hooked, fused to the surrounding bone, or otherwise unusual, it usually falls into the category of a simple extraction. Once the tooth and the surrounding tissues get sufficiently numbed with a local anesthetic, our dentist will loosen any attached periodontal tissues and apply forceps to remove the tooth. As with all dental procedures, we do all we can to help ensure your comfort and relaxation throughout every step in care. For patients who are anxious about dental work or certain procedures, we can discuss additional options in dental sedation.
For teeth that are severely broken down, anklylosed, or impacted, a surgical extraction is often indicated. We may refer you to an oral and maxillofacial surgeon to perform this procedure. During a surgical extraction, a small incision in the soft tissues and localized, precise removal of overlying bone provides greater access to remove the tooth. As with all tooth extractions, patients are given a local anesthetic to completely numb the involved tooth and the surrounding tissues. Once again, additional options in dental sedation, pre-surgical considerations, and directives are thoroughly discussed and explained.
As skilled and experienced providers of care, we recognize that every case is different and provide treatment that addresses the unique requirements of each patient. Depending on a patient's specific needs, we provide post-operative instructions, including special instructions, limitations on activities, medications, and follow-up care that support optimal recovery and healing. In some cases, post-op care may also include the involvement of a patient's physician. In general, and unless modified otherwise by our office, the following post-operative guidelines apply to simple extractions.
Maintaining gauze pressure
Following your extraction, some gauze to bite down on will be placed over the extraction site. By biting down and maintaining pressure on the gauze as instructed, any active bleeding should stop. You may change the gauze pad after the first hour. Continue to bite down for another 45 minutes if heavy oozing continues. While it's normal for a little oozing to continue for 24 hours, contact our office if you are still experiencing profuse oozing or bleeding.
Until the local anesthesia wears off
Until the local anesthetic has completely worn off, it's essential to protect yourself from unintentionally biting or injuring your lips, cheeks, gums, or tongue.
If you have been given a prescription for antibiotics, be sure to take the correct dosage and full course of medication as prescribed.
It's helpful to take a pain reliever before the local anesthetic completely wears off. Over-the-counter (non-aspirin) pain medication may be taken to relieve discomfort. Any prescription pain medication should only be taken as directed.
To facilitate healing
Do not rinse your mouth, spit, drink through a straw, or suck on candies. It's essential to allow the extraction site to clot and not dislodge the new clot once it has formed.
An ice-pack held in place in the facial area overlying the extraction site helps to control swelling. Apply the ice for 10-minute intervals during the first day following your procedure.
Smoking not only prevents clot formation, but it also interferes with healing. Avoid smoking and tobacco products for the first week.
Watch what you eat and drink
Stay away from hot or spicy foods and drinks for the first day or two. Also, refrain from drinking any carbonated or alcoholic beverages. Stick with a diet of soft foods and liquids for the first couple of days following surgery. Drink plenty of fluids.
Brush gently; it's essential to take great care not to disturb or irritate the extraction site for a few days. A very mild lukewarm saltwater solution can be used to freshen your mouth. Remember not to rinse or spit that first day or two. Simply let any liquids gently fall from your mouth into the sink.
An appointment for a follow-up visit
If sutures (stitches) were placed, or if a complex extraction, an infection, or other issues requires a visit to monitor your healing and progress, you will be given an appointment for follow-up care. It's essential that you keep this appointment as provided.
If you experience continued bleeding, ongoing pain, more swelling, have a bad taste in your mouth, or other unusual symptoms, contact our office.
You deserve quality care that's personalized to meet your individual needs, and at the office of Caring Bear Dental, you can rest assured your smile is in the best of hands. We deliver precise and gentle care, keeping you informed and relaxed throughout your procedure. If your tooth needs to be replaced, we'll discuss your best options, including dentures, fixed bridges, and dental implants. As the most advanced method of tooth replacement available, dental implants come the closest to replicating the look, feel, and function of a natural smile.
The most common reasons for tooth loss include advanced periodontal disease, extensive tooth decay, and facial trauma. According to statistics, gum disease is responsible for close to 70% of tooth loss in adults. Although less frequent than the preceding three reasons, it should also be noted that specific diseases, drugs, smoking, and poor nutrition contribute to the risk of tooth loss.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that in the United States, an average of 12 teeth (including the wisdom teeth) are lost by the age of 50. Also, 26% of adults between 65 and 74 years of age have lost all their teeth.
Every patient and every situation is different. However, when a tooth and the surrounding tissues are numbed with a local anesthetic, you should only expect to feel a bit of pressure, but no pain as the tooth is being loosened from the surrounding tissues and extracted. For patients who are apprehensive and for some surgical extractions, our office will discuss our options in dental sedation to provide further relaxation and reduce any sense of discomfort.
While it's normal to feel some tenderness and swelling following an extraction, the degree of these sensations can vary. It mostly depends on the complexity of the extraction and the body's response to the procedure. We'll recommend or prescribe the appropriate pain medication to help ensure your comfort and give you specific instructions for maximum effectiveness and safety.
Typically, the recovery period following a simple extraction is shorter than a surgical extraction. However, a patient's overall health, habits, and the size and location of the tooth, and other variables can influence recovery and healing. To speed up the recovery and avoid any complications, patients must follow the given at-home instructions diligently. We'll carefully review what to expect following your procedure and go over your post-op instructions.
Smoking interferes with blood clot formation, which is an essential first step in the healing process. Blot clot formation not only provides a protective layer to cover the underlying exposed bone and nerve endings, but it also supports the growth of new tissue. Cigarette smoke also contains chemical toxins that can disrupt the healing process and lead to problems such as continued inflammation, infection, or dry socket.
In a very small percentage of cases, a condition known as dry socket can develop in the aftermath of a dental extraction. This painful condition can arise when the blood clot in the extraction site doesn't form properly or gets dislodged. With dry socket, you may experience throbbing pain and symptoms such as bad breath and an unpleasant taste in your mouth. As skilled providers of care, our office will provide immediate treatment to alleviate your discomfort and promote healing.
The last teeth in your mouth to develop, wisdom teeth often do not have enough room to fully erupt or may be positioned in the wrong direction. These issues can affect your dental health as well as overall wellbeing. While some individuals never develop all their wisdom teeth, and a few have sufficient space for them, there are many people with partially or fully impacted third molars. Our office will monitor the development, position, and health of your wisdom teeth and will advise you if and when extractions are indicated.
After a tooth is removed, bone-grafting material is sometimes placed in the socket to promote healing and encourage new bone development. This procedure is often performed to support the eventual and successful placement of a dental implant.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we strive to make dental care affordable and accessible. Depending on the type or complexity of the extraction and other variables, the cost of the procedure can vary. Based on our diagnostic findings, our office will inform you of the healthiest choices in care, explain the fees, discuss insurance coverage, and explain your payment options.
Many dental plans offer some level of coverage for tooth extractions. We'll advise you if your plan covers the full cost of the procedure and if there is any out-of-pocket expense. Our business office will work with you to maximize your insurance benefits as much as possible while helping you minimize any out-of-pocket expenses.
Chronic jaw clenching and grinding one’s teeth is called bruxism. While it can happen any time of day, it often occurs at night causing an individual to wake up with any number of symptoms including jaw pain, headaches, and sore teeth that may feel loose. Although, stress and anxiety are the most common causes of bruxism there may be other contributing factors such as a sleep disorder, an abnormal bite, as well as teeth that are missing or poorly aligned.
To alleviate the symptoms of bruxism, wearing a night guard while sleeping is frequently recommended. This appliance is designed to fit over the teeth and to keep the jaws slightly apart. Wearing a night guard prevents a number of damaging events, including muscle strain, excessive pressure on the jaw joint (the TMJ), and such dental damage as chipped or cracked teeth resulting from the teeth grinding against each other.
In addition to preventing damage to the soft and hard tissues surrounding the orofacial cavity, a custom night guard fabricated at the dental office can help curb a bruxism habit and give the wearer a better night’s sleep.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we emphasize taking a proactive approach as the best way to maintain a healthy, beautiful smile. By coming to our office as recommended for checkup visits and routine care, we can help you and every member of your family prevent the onset and progression of many oral health problems. As skilled and experienced providers of care, we offer a comprehensive range of preventive services, including examinations, professional teeth cleanings, and oral cancer screenings, along with patient education on hygiene, diet, and healthy practices.
Your first visit to our office establishes your oral health baseline and provides essential information on your dental interests and needs. We begin by carefully reviewing your medical and dental histories and taking special note of all of your dental concerns, as well as any symptoms that you may be experiencing. This initial conversation is followed by a thorough clinical examination, including an oral cancer screening, periodontal evaluation, and an analysis of your occlusion (bite). To perform a comprehensive oral exam, we'll recommend and take diagnostic films as needed. As we take a close look at your smile, we'll examine your teeth, the supporting bone and soft tissues, and the surrounding areas of the mouth, head, and neck. We'll make a note of any signs of clenching or grinding your teeth and assess your TMJ (temporomandibular joint) function. A comprehensive oral exam can also reveal the consequences that certain dietary choices, eating disorders, medications, harmful habits, and inadequate oral hygiene practices may have on your smile.
We want every patient to enjoy the benefits of a healthy and beautiful smile. At the office of Caring Bear Dental, you can rest assured that your oral exam is performed with the utmost care and that every member of our team is sensitive to your needs. Based on your oral exam findings and what we see on your diagnostic films, we'll outline what further treatment, if any, may be needed and discuss all your options in care.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we recognize that a healthy smile is more than just an attractive asset; it is also essential to one's overall well-being. Harmful conditions affecting your teeth, gums, jaws, and structures in and around the oral cavity can impact your overall well-being. As we perform an oral exam and check for the development of common dental conditions such as tooth decay or gum disease and screen for oral cancer, we also take note of any signs of problematic health issues that may have originated elsewhere in the body.
Today, researchers are establishing more and more links between poor oral health and systemic disease. Mounting evidence supports the idea that dental disease contributes to a range of health issues, including the following conditions:
The reverse is also true. Just as oral health problems can be linked to systemic illnesses, diseases in the body can likewise produce oral health issues. According to statistics, more than 90% of all systemic diseases (conditions affecting organs and systems in the body) can manifest signs and symptoms in the oral cavity. Experiencing dry mouth, bad breath, gum problems, ulcerations, or other oral lesions may be indicative of an underlying medical condition.
Enjoying a smile that looks good and functions at its best is not something you can take for granted. To maintain optimal oral health and a vibrant smile requires an effective dental hygiene regimen, a nutritious diet, routine checkups, professional cleanings, and a comprehensive program of preventive care.
Remember, it's important not to hold off seeing the dentist until you're in terrible pain or think there's something wrong. By scheduling a routine appointment for a comprehensive dental checkup and professional cleaning, we can help you keep your smile looking and functioning at its very best.
Our office encourages patients to come in twice a year for routine checkups and professional cleanings. In this way, we can monitor your oral health, reduce your risk of dental disease, and detect any issues early in their onset when they are typically the simplest to treat.
While maintaining a healthy smile depends upon keeping your teeth and gums clean at home, even for the best "brushers" and "flossers," it's difficult to reach every nook and cranny between the teeth and gums. For this reason, we emphasize the importance of professional teeth cleanings. In this way, our hygienist can thoroughly remove any accumulated plaque and tartar from between the teeth and gums, including areas that you may have missed. Since dental plaque harbors the bacteria that are responsible for cavities and gum disease, its removal prevents these disease processes from occurring. Following a dental cleaning and polishing to remove any superficial stains from your teeth, your mouth will feel fresh and clean.
Checkup and cleaning visits also represent an opportunity to educate patients in the best oral hygiene homecare methods and routines to maintain a healthy smile. As your trusted partner in care, we'll carefully explain and demonstrate the proper techniques for brushing, flossing, and other healthy oral care practices.
Even though proper dental care is essential at every stage of life, it's especially important for children to establish a strong foundation for a lifetime of oral health. With routine checkups, preventive treatment, and age-appropriate education in the best methods for taking care of their teeth, we can help your little ones protect their smiles from dental disease. We also monitor your children's dental and jaw development as they grow; keeping a close watch to determine if any orthodontic intervention will be needed to align their smiles.
Our goal is to help you and every member of your family establish healthy practices that will last a lifetime. At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we're proud of the reputation we've established for providing skilled and compassionate care. We work hard to make every visit to our office a positive experience while building long-standing relationships with our patients and achieving outstanding treatment outcomes.
Although we perform a thorough visual inspection of every aspect of your smile, the only way to see the deeper structures of the teeth, as well as the surrounding tissues and bone, is with dental x-rays or radiographs. Diagnostic x-rays not only reveal the presence of dental disease, but they also provide valuable information on the development, health, and integrity of teeth and orofacial structures.
Thanks to advances in technology, x-rays have entered the digital age. Instead of using traditional film-based methods, which involved long-exposure times and developing solutions, digital x-ray images can now be acquired, stored, and managed via digital sensors and integrated software programs.
Digital radiography offers several benefits to the patient, including the following:
Quicker with minimal exposure to x-ray radiation
Images can be viewed immediately after acquisition
Images can be electronically shared
Digital radiographs do not require any developing chemicals, create less waste, and are safer for the environment
Images are immediately stored in the patient's electronic file, where they can be easily viewed on a screen, shared, or printed out.
The type of diagnostic images our office will recommend depends on the nature of your visit and your oral healthcare needs.
Here's a list of some of the most common diagnostic films and the value of these images:
Periapical x-ray - This small film is typically taken of an individual tooth and provides a view of the entire tooth from the top of the crown to the tip of the root and bone adjacent to it.
Bitewing x-ray - This small film captures detailed views of the crowns of the premolars or molars and is typically used to check for dental decay.
Full Mouth Series - This set of x-rays consists of bitewing and periapical views of all the teeth.
Panoramic Film (panorex) - This film provides a 2D panoramic view of all the teeth and the left and right sides of the jaw. It offers a view of erupted teeth, developing teeth, impacted teeth, and allows an assessment of the health and integrity of the jawbone.
Cephalometric Film - This film provides a profile view of the face and jaws and is often used by orthodontists to assess a patient's skeletal facial and jaw growth.
Today, it's also possible to capture detailed three-dimensional images for diagnostic purposes, treatment planning, and the delivery of care. By using Cone-beam computed tomography (CBCT) your dentist can acquire, analyze, and reconstruct 3D images of a patient's teeth, jaws, and surrounding anatomy. This technology is often employed for diagnosis, surgical planning, treatment, and the accurate placement of dental implants.
Yes. We always welcome new patients and their families for care. Feel free to give us a call or reach out to us online to schedule a first visit or for any additional information on our office. We look forward to hearing from you!
Routine dental checkups and professional cleanings help ensure your smile remains in tip-top condition and that any developing problems receive the prompt care they require. While it's a good idea to schedule a checkup and cleaning twice a year, longer or shorter intervals between routine visits depend on your specific needs.
We understand that life gets complicated and busy, and for various reasons, you haven't been able to get to the dentist for care. Don't worry; it's always a good time to get back in touch with the health of your smile.
At Caring Bear Dental, we offer skilled and compassionate care to address a wide range of dental needs. Whether you need a simple checkup and cleaning, restorations, periodontal treatment, root canal therapy, or the replacement of missing teeth to get your smile back into shape, we provide precise, gentle, stress-free treatment to give you a smile that is as beautiful as it is healthy.
Give us a call today; we're happy to address all your questions and concerns about getting your smile back in tip-top condition.
For pregnant women practicing good oral care and seeing the dentist to maintain a healthy smile is considered an important component of prenatal care. Researchers have found that pregnancy not only increases the risk of oral health problems, but these problems may also lead to pregnancy complications. At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we provide the skilled and compassionate care required to help expectant mothers keep their teeth and gums in tip-top condition. While certain procedures are not recommended during pregnancy, we provide the necessary care and take all the necessary precautions required.
Thanks to advances in modern dentistry, teeth that have been affected by a range of imperfections or that have sustained damage from trauma or dental decay can be restored to produce a naturally beautiful looking and functional smile.
As skilled and experienced providers of care, our office can effectively improve and enhance the appearance of teeth that are stained, discolored, misshapen, chipped, fractured, gapped, crowded, or broken down due to dental decay. At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we offer a comprehensive selection of the leading-edge cosmetic solutions from teeth whitening procedures, dental bonding, tooth-colored fillings, and veneers, to prosthetic solutions and dental implants to rebuild complete and beautiful smiles.
Contact our office to learn more about the many ways we can help you create the smile you've always wanted.
If you're visiting Caring Bear Dental for the first time, it is helpful that you contact your former dental office and have your records sent over to us. Make note of any problems you may have so that you can discuss them with your dentist.
To provide efficient service, we ask you to please bring your insurance card, an ID, plus any referral slips or diagnostic records given to you by another office. If you are taking medications, please note or make a list of what they are as you will need to provide that information. If you'd like to save some time, you can fill out some of our forms online.
Yes! We assure you that both you and your family will be in good hands at the office of Caring Bear Dental.
We do our best to make sure every patient who steps into our office for care is put at ease. We provide precise and gentle care and our skilled, compassionate team strives to make every visit stress-free. You can rest assured that your smile is in the best of hands and that we are doing all we can to ensure your comfort throughout every procedure. While we always take the time to explain every step in care, feel free to ask us any questions about local anesthesia and methods of dental sedation.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we strive to provide the highest quality of care to address all your dental needs. Once we've had the opportunity to examine your smile, we can give you a clear picture of any dental issues that are present, along with a quote for what the cost of treatment will be. The cost of care all depends upon the extent and complexity of issues affecting the health or appearance of your smile and the types of procedures that are required. Our goal is to make dental care more affordable so that you can begin treatment without any additional stress or delay.
Keep in mind that with routine dental checkups and periodic care, we can help prevent dental disease while treating emerging problems early in their onset to avoid larger issues and more expensive care down the road.
Routine dental checkups and preventive care procedures may be covered under your dental insurance plan requiring little to no out-of-pocket expense. We invite you to speak to an expert in our business office who will advise you of your plan, and if you have any other questions about dental insurance, dental savings plans, forms of payment, or financing options. We welcome your inquiries and do our best to help you begin care without additional stress or delay.
If you've lost a tooth due to injury, decay, gum disease, or any other reason, we recommend dental implants to replace missing teeth. Dental implants come the closest to replicating the look, feel, and function of your natural teeth.
Absolutely! Both flossing and brushing regularly are equally important to maintain your oral health. While brushing cleans the surface of your teeth, flossing cleans in between them. Flossing is important to prevent plaque buildup, which can cause gums to recede and lead to periodontal disease.
Even if you have dentures, it is still necessary to see a dentist! Dental checkups help ensure that your dentures are comfortable, fitting properly, and that there are no other problems. Beyond assessing your dentures, our dentist will also perform a thorough examination of the jawbone, and surrounding soft tissues both inside the mouth, the face, and neck, to confirm that you remain in good oral health.
Emergency dental care is a service we hope you'll never need- but if you do, the office of Caring Bear Dental is here for you!
Whether you're suffering from a chipped tooth, toothache, or any problem affecting your oral health, you can be sure to get the prompt attention and compassionate care you require at our office. Patient care and comfort are our top priorities, and we offer a comprehensive range of the most advanced services to address a broad spectrum of dental needs.
While the pain of a toothache is one of the more common reasons that patients come to our office for emergency dental care, we also promptly treat emergencies that are not necessarily painful like crowns that have been dislodged and broken dentures that leave embarrassing gaps in one's smile.
You can rest assured that your oral health is in the best of hands at our office. We'll quickly determine exactly what's wrong, explain your treatment options, and then provide the precise and gentle care you require to alleviate your discomfort and get you back on the path to oral health and wellness.
Your health and comfort are our top priorities. If your dental emergency is painful, if it affects the appearance of your smile, or if you suspect that an infection is present, our office will make every effort to see you as soon as possible for care.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we welcome patients of all ages for care and offer a comprehensive range of services designed to help every member of your family maintain a beautiful and healthy smile. Whether you or a loved one needs a routine checkup and cleaning, fillings, same-day crowns, a cosmetic smile makeover, the replacement of missing teeth or require the services of a skilled and compassionate emergency dentist, you can rely on our office for the highest quality care.
For more information on our office and the many services we provide, or to schedule an appointment for care, give us a call today.
Did you know that the most common cause of tooth loss in adults is gum disease? According to statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one out of every two adults over the age of 30 in the United States has periodontal disease. However, the good news is that periodontal disease is almost entirely preventable. At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we offer a comprehensive range of services to help patients maintain optimal periodontal health and enjoy the benefits of a smile that look, feels, and functions at its best.
Periodontal disease, more commonly known as gum disease, is a set of inflammatory diseases that affect the "periodontium", which are the hard and soft tissues surrounding and supporting your teeth. Just like tooth decay, gum disease is attributed to the harmful bacteria in dental plaque and tartar that accumulate around the teeth and under the gums.
Since the progression of periodontal disease is often painless, you may not even be aware of an ongoing disease process. For this very reason, it’s essential to practice good oral hygiene and schedule visits for regular checkups, professional cleanings, and routine care.
Taking care of your smile includes being mindful of the signs and symptoms of gum disease.
Some indications that you may have periodontal disease include:
Inflamed and red gums
Bleeding when brushing or flossing
Receding gums and exposed tooth root surfaces
Sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures
Bad breath or a bad taste in the mouth
Teeth that feel loose
New spaces developing between the teeth or a change in the bite
Change in the fit of existing partial dentures
Discharge around the teeth and gums
Sharp or dull pain when biting down or chewing food
Taking care of your smile does more than keep your teeth and gums in optimal condition; good oral health also supports systemic health. In addition to being the leading cause of tooth loss in adults, researchers are finding more and more links between periodontal disease and a number of medical problems, including heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and respiratory problems.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we emphasize the importance of prevention, early detection, and timely treatment of periodontal disease. We provide patients the guidance, support, and care required to maintain optimal periodontal health.
Gingivitis represents the initial stage of gum disease. Although it doesn’t cause overt discomfort and often goes unnoticed, there are specific signs to be aware of that indicate the start of a problem. If you notice your gums bleed when you brush, look red and inflamed, or feel a little tender, you more than likely have gingivitis.
The good news is that by treating gingivitis early, the tissue damage associated with more advanced stages of gum disease can be avoided. Despite the presence of inflammation, the overall integrity of the periodontal tissues in this stage remains intact.
Treatment instituted at this point is often sufficient to reverse the course of the disease and to avoid any permanent damage to the periodontal tissues. A series of deep dental cleanings, an improved home care regimen and a commitment to regular maintenance may be all that is required to prevent this stage of periodontal disease from progressing.
When left untreated, a case of gingivitis develops into a more advanced and damaging stage of gum disease, known as periodontitis. At this point, the connective tissue and bone that hold the teeth in place begin to break down. With the progression of periodontal disease and periodontitis, more and more tissue loss ensues. Damage often includes an increase in pocketing between the teeth and bone, gum recession, and bone loss. As unresolved periodontitis goes from mild to moderate to severe, it increasingly compromises the soft and hard tissues supporting the teeth.
Periodontal treatment in this phase is designed to halt the progression of the disease and to restore tooth support as possible. Treatment may involve medications to control the bacteria and reduce the size of the pockets between the teeth and gums, gum surgery, as well as bone and tissue grafts.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we offer personalized, state-of-the-art solutions to help you maintain healthy gums and an attractive, well-functioning smile. As skilled providers of care, we utilize leading-edge technology and treatment methods to address a broad range of periodontal conditions and needs.
Thanks to advances in care, periodontal treatment today not only helps to halt the progression of gum disease but also delivers effective solutions, including bone grafting and regenerative procedures to repair tissue damage, restore bone volume, improve cosmetics, or provide adequate support for the placement of dental implants.
The type of periodontal treatment you receive depends on several factors including the stage of periodontal disease, the extent of tissue damage, your overall oral health, existing medical conditions, and other considerations in care. After a thorough assessment of your case, we’ll discuss your options to reestablish and maintain optimal periodontal health. We welcome your questions and are always on hand to provide guidance and address your concerns.
When periodontal disease is detected early in its onset, conservative or non-surgical methods of care combined with improved hygiene routines can restore periodontal health. While periodic, professional cleanings are sufficient to maintain periodontal health in patients that do not have gum disease, once gingivitis is present, deeper cleanings and possibly other non-surgical methods of care are recommended to treat the condition.
The American Academy of Periodontology emphasizes achieving periodontal health by means of the least invasive and cost-effective treatment approaches to care. Deeper cleanings, which include Scaling and Root planing, are non-surgical procedures that are considered the first line of defense against the progression of periodontal disease.
With scaling and root planing, any plaque and tartar (hardened dental plaque) that have accumulated below the gumline are carefully removed, and then the root surfaces of the teeth are smoothed. Since periodontal disease is an inflammatory response to plaque, tartar, and bacterial toxins, by simply mechanically eliminating these agents, the progression of gum disease can be halted. In addition to removing plaque and tartar with a scaling and root planing procedure, antimicrobial medication placed under the gumline or systemic medications can be used as adjuncts to care to further reduce the bacterial population.
If non-surgical approaches to managing periodontal disease do not achieve the desired outcome, surgery may be recommended to halt its progression and repair damage as possible.
When gum disease has advanced beyond the initial stage, periodontal surgery is often recommended to effectively remove bacteria and tartar from around the teeth, reduce gingival pocket depth, restore lost tissue as possible, and halt disease progression. It’s essential to keep in mind that gum disease is a progressive condition. If appropriate measures are not taken, gum disease continues to compromise the support of the teeth and have consequences to one’s overall dental health and well-being.
As untreated gingivitis evolves into more advanced stages of gum disease, periodontal pockets deepen, the bacteria become more difficult to remove, and the gaps between the surface of the teeth and gums get larger. When pocket depth increases to the point of being beyond the reach of deep cleanings and other conservative methods of care (5mm or more), gum surgery to clean and treat the damage to gums and underlying bone is typically recommended.
The good news is that with proper surgical treatment followed by improved oral hygiene, the chances of tooth loss, further damage to the bone and soft tissues supporting the teeth, and complications from health problems that are linked to periodontal disease can be decreased.
The goals of pocket reduction surgery are to accomplish the following:
Remove sub-gingival bacteria beneath the gums and from the surfaces of the roots of the teeth
Halt damage to the underlying bone, and recontour the affected hard tissues as needed
Reduce pocket depth to facilitate easier cleaning of the teeth and gums and the maintenance of optimal periodontal health
In many cases, a periodontal procedure, which is known as flap surgery, is frequently recommended. During this procedure, the gums in the affected area are reflected away from the teeth and supporting bone. Now, the pocket and roots of the teeth can be thoroughly cleaned and supporting tissues recontoured as needed. When this step gets completed, the tissue flag gets sutured back into place.
Today, in addition to conventional surgical approaches to care, dental lasers are also used to perform select periodontal procedures. When applicable, laser technology can help treat periodontitis, reduce pocket depth, address peri-implantitis, and remove or recontour gingival tissues for cosmetic purposes.
Most people don’t realize that periodontal disease is the leading cause of tooth loss among adults. According to statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one out of every two adults over the age of 30 in the United States has periodontal disease.
You may be surprised to learn that the human mouth is home to a wide variety of microbes. The fact is that over 700 different strains of bacteria have been detected in the oral cavity. Although some of these bacteria are beneficial, others are harmful to oral health. Without proper oral hygiene and routine dental care, these harmful bacteria can cause tooth decay and gum disease, compromising both your oral health and overall wellbeing.
In addition to inadequate oral hygiene and infrequent professional care, other factors, including smoking, genetic tendencies, and unchecked diabetes, can contribute to the escalation of periodontal disease.
Your gums and teeth have an interdependent relationship, which means healthy teeth depend on the support of healthy gums. Also, taking care of your smile does more than keep your teeth and gums in optimal condition; good oral health also supports systemic health. In addition to being the leading cause of tooth loss in adults, researchers are finding more and more links between periodontal disease and a number of medical problems, including heart disease, stroke, diabetes, respiratory problems, and adverse pregnancy outcomes such as pre-term and low birth-weight babies.
If you notice that your gums are bleeding with the slightest pressure while brushing or flossing, it’s a sign of gingivitis. Although gingivitis is the earliest stage of gum disease, it can easily be reversed with deeper cleanings as well as an improved regimen of oral hygiene at home.
In the absence of professional treatment and better home care, gingivitis progresses to the next stage, which is known as periodontitis. In this stage, the connective tissue and bone that hold the teeth in place begin to break down with an increase in pocketing between the teeth and bone, gum recession, and bone loss. Without proper treatment by your dentist, periodontitis will progress from a mild to moderate loss of supporting tissue to the destruction of the bone around the teeth.
Although gingivitis can often be reversed with improved oral hygiene and professional cleanings, as periodontal disease advances, more extensive procedures are required to halt its progression. Based on a complete assessment of your periodontal health and a review of possible contributing factors, our office will recommend the best options in care. Treatment for periodontitis may include a series of deeper cleanings known as root planing and scaling, surgical procedures to reduce pocket depth, bone or tissue grafts, laser procedures, or antimicrobial medications.
The cost of care depends on the type of procedures required to restore your periodontal health. If you have dental insurance, plans often cover treatment to prevent gum disease as well as many procedures to treat the various stages of gum disease. Our goal is to help patients restore and maintain good oral health. We do all we can to help you begin care without additional stress or delay. Our business office works with you to maximize your benefits and provide easier, more convenient payment options.
By seeing our office regularly for care and doing your best to eat a healthy diet and practice good oral hygiene, you can keep your smile in tip-top shape as well as protect your overall wellbeing.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we provide a comprehensive range of services to address all your oral healthcare needs. You can rest assured that your smile is in the best of hands at our office. Our skilled and experienced team maintains a position at the forefront of advances in care and remains dedicated to providing the highest quality of skilled and compassionate treatment.
For more information on our office and the many services we provide, give us a call today.
According to recent studies good oral hygiene is essential not only for your dental health, it is important to your overall health and well-being. Our comprehensive dental hygiene program is designed to preserve your teeth and the supporting structures by preventing the onset, progress, and recurrence of dental disease.
To maintain your optimal oral health we recommend periodic professional dental cleanings. Removing plaque and debris from teeth, especially from places where a toothbrush can't reach, like underneath the gum line and in-between teeth is extremely important.
It is also important to keep in mind that in conjunction with periodic dental professional cleanings, a good dental home care regimen is necessary. As part of the preventive program at this office your current home care practices will be reviewed. Following that, we will make recommendations as to what areas require improvements, and instruct you in the proper methods of brushing and flossing.
Additional preventive services may be indicated for individual patients. An integral part of our preventive program for pediatric patients includes periodic fluoride treatments and the application of dental sealants.
If you are told that a tooth requires a root canal procedure, there’s no need for alarm. Today, a root canal procedure is as routine and comfortable as receiving a dental filling. As a matter of fact, a root canal procedure is typically the best way to relieve toothache pain, save a damaged tooth, and preserve your natural smile.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we use the latest technology to provide precise and gentle care to help patients maintain healthy, beautiful smiles. Patient care and comfort are our top priorities, and you can rest assured your oral health is in the best of hands.
With a demonstrated success rate of well over 90%, root canal procedures remain the most effective way of saving and retaining a tooth that has been severely compromised by dental decay or injury. Because having a healthy natural dentition supports your oral health and overall well-being, root canal therapy, as opposed to having the involved tooth extracted, is a routine and widely recommended procedure. Across the United States alone, root canal procedures are routinely performed almost 41,000 times daily and close to 15 million times per year.
Your teeth are much more than just the hard outer biting surfaces and the roots. Inside each one is a central chamber containing connective tissue, a nerve supply, and blood vessels. Collectively, these core tissues, known as the dental pulp, help your tooth to grow and mature before it emerges into the mouth. Once your tooth is in place, the dental pulp provides nourishment, keeps the tooth vital, and alerts you of problems.
Having sensitivity to various stimuli like biting down and eating or drinking hot or cold items is a warning from the nerves inside your tooth that dental decay is present, dental trauma has occurred, or infection is brewing. The degree of pain that you experience depends on the extent of the damage and nerve involvement.
When a tooth needs a root canal, it is because the dental pulp has become irreversibly damaged or has died. However, if enough intact tooth structure remains, and there’s good bone support around the compromised tooth, you do not need to have the tooth extracted. A fully developed tooth does not require the dental pulp to remain functional. You can preserve your natural tooth by having your dentist perform a root canal on the tooth.
Although not every instance of dental discomfort indicates the need for root canal therapy, some of the warning signs that you might require this procedure include the following:
Pain is your body’s way of signaling that something is amiss. Although, there are many explanations for oral pain, one of the most common reasons is a toothache caused by decay or damage that has affected the tooth’s inner vital tissues. Patients in need of root canal therapy often report dental pain that wakes them up at night.
If the pleasure of sipping hot beverages or foods are overshadowed by dental pain that makes you wince, it's time to contact our office. Extreme sensitivity to hot or cold foods and drinks can indicate an inflamed, irritated, or non-vital dental pulp.
If it hurts when you bite and chew or when you just touch the tooth, it may indicate pulpal involvement, irreversible damage to the inner vital tissues of the tooth, or the presence of an infection.
A discolored tooth is often a message that the inner vital tissues, including the tooth’s nerve and blood supply, have been compromised. Teeth that have sustained an injury may demonstrate discoloration as the internal tissues have devitalized.
An injury that chips or fractures a tooth can also traumatize the dental pulp or even compromise so much tooth structure that a root canal procedure is required to save the tooth.
Swelling of the gums around a tooth may indicate that an infection has developed. While the swelling can worsen and cause more harmful consequences, sometimes a dental abscess starts to ooze pus and drain. In either case, prompt care is required.
The pathology associated with a tooth need of root canal therapy can damage the bone supporting the tooth and produce some mobility. Root canal therapy can often resolve this issue as tissue healing occurs.
While some of the above signs and symptoms can indicate other dental problems, they all require prompt evaluation and care. In some cases, a tooth in need of root canal therapy has not yet demonstrated overt symptoms. It may first get diagnosed and brought to your attention following a comprehensive, routine exam. Typically, these teeth show radiographic evidence of periapical pathology (root end pathology) or other types of structural damage.
It is essential that when a root canal is recommended that you receive timely care. Delaying the procedure increases the risk of more widespread and severe symptoms developing. A dental infection can pose significant consequences to your oral health and even threaten your overall health and well-being.
With the modern dental instruments and advanced techniques available today, having a non-surgical root canal procedure is often as comfortable as getting a routine dental filling.
While some root canals can be completed in one visit, others may involve 2 or 3 appointments. How long it takes depends on factors such as the number of canals in a tooth, its anatomy, and whether an active infection is present.
During a root canal procedure, our dentist will remove the diseased dental pulp, clean the internal portion of your tooth, and then fill all the prepared canals with a biocompatible filling material. Root canal therapy is typically performed under local anesthesia, but additional options in dental sedation are available to reduce any anxiety associated with dental procedures.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, the care and comfort of our patients are our top priorities. Our goal is to help our patients enjoy optimal oral health and to keep them well informed every step of the way.
After your root canal procedure, you may experience the following:
Immediately following your dental visit, you may experience a period of lingering numbness. Normal sensation typically returns within an hour or two. However, until the anesthetic has completely worn off, it’s essential to protect yourself from unintentionally biting or injuring your lips, cheeks, gums, or tongue. Be mindful of chewing, drinking hot beverages, or smoking.
A root canal procedure will alleviate the pain of a toothache. However, you may still experience some mild to moderate discomfort in the immediate aftermath when the anesthesia wears off. These feelings should subside within days. To help prevent any undue pressure, which may cause pain, the biting surface of the involved may be slightly filed and taken out of occlusion. Our office will also recommend appropriate over-the-counter pain medications and provide a prescription if indicated.
If you have been given a prescription for antibiotics to treat or prevent an infection, it’s essential to complete the course of medications as prescribed.
Even with a temporary filling, a tooth with a root canal remains vulnerable to stress and can fracture until a permanent crown or suitable permanent restoration is placed. In the interim, be mindful of the involved tooth. Try to chew on the opposite side of the mouth and avoid hard and sticky foods.
While you need to be mindful of a tooth that has received root canal therapy, it’s essential to continue to brush and floss. By maintaining proper oral hygiene, you’re preventing further problems as well as supporting healing and optimal oral health.
To rebuild the strength and integrity of a tooth that has received a root canal therapy, it needs to be restored with a permanent crown or suitable restoration. Until that time, the remaining tooth structure is weak and vulnerable to fracture. The sooner a permanent restoration is placed, the sooner you can bite and chew with confidence and ease.
With proper maintenance and care, a tooth that has been treated with root canal treatment can last a lifetime.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we’re dedicated to providing the highest quality of care. If you have any additional concerns, continuing discomfort, or signs of an infection, or concerns following your procedure, contact our office for prompt attention and care.
A root canal procedure is the best way to save a tooth that has been damaged by decay or injury and preserve your natural smile. The alternative is an extraction and treatment to replace the tooth. While at times a tooth is non-restorable and an extraction is the only option, when possible, it’s best to try and save your natural tooth. With proper care, a tooth with root canal therapy care can serve your smile well for many years to come.
Despite lingering myths from before the age of modern dental anesthesia and technology, having a root canal procedure today is as routine and comfortable as visiting the dentist for a filling. While the procedure is performed under local anesthesia with your tooth completely numbed, we can also discuss options in dental sedation.
Whether the symptoms of a dental infection subside after a course of antibiotics, a draining abscess provides you with some temporary pain relief, or a tooth with radiographic evidence of pathology has not yet developed symptoms, it’s essential, before an infection worsens or occurs, to have a root canal procedure performed. In this way, the tooth can be disinfected, filled, and sealed to protect your health and avoid further problems.
If you have sustained a dental injury, have a toothache, jaw pain, swelling, or are experiencing any other unusual and uncomfortable oral symptoms, contact our office immediately for care. Dental problems that have not been evaluated and treated can significantly worsen, producing more severe damage and consequences for the involved teeth, your oral health, and even your overall wellbeing. Once you get in touch with our office, our friendly and compassionate office team will get you in for care at your earliest convenience.
While some root canal procedures can be completed in one visit, others may involve 2 or 3 appointments. How long it takes depends on various factors, including active infection, the number of canals in the tooth, and the tooth’s location or anatomy.
With a success rate that exceeds 95%, root canal therapy remains the most effective procedure to save a tooth in which the inner vital tissues have been damaged. However, as with all healthcare procedures, there are a small percentage of cases where the teeth become symptomatic a second time. The good news is that many of these teeth can still be saved with root canal retreatment or a minor surgical procedure known as an apicoectomy.
The best ways to maintain a tooth with root canal therapy are to get the proper restoration required to rebuild and protect the tooth, maintain proper oral hygiene, and schedule appointments for routine dental checkups and care.
Saving a tooth with root canal therapy is a wise investment that, in the long run, is typically less costly and invasive than having the tooth extracted and replaced with a fixed bridge or implant. As far as the exact cost of care, it can vary depending on which tooth is being treated. Many dental insurance plans provide coverage for root canal therapy. At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we do our best to optimize your dental benefits and minimize your out-of-pocket expenses. Our staff answer all your questions about the cost of care and discuss all your payment options.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we use the latest technology and most effective methods of care to provide precise and gentle care. Our reputation for excellence is based upon a consistent record of achieving successful treatment outcomes while providing prompt, stress-free, and convenient treatment for every type of dental need.
Sedation dentistry offers individuals with general anxiety about going to the dentist or fears about a specific dental procedure the opportunity to have a stress free and more comfortable experience. Utilizing safe and controlled sedation techniques prior to the dental procedure the patient is eased into a state of complete relaxation. This eliminates any discomfort, pain, and preoperative anxiety that may be associated with a particular dental visit. With sedation dentistry patients typically feel more at ease post-operatively as they have little or no memory of the actual moment-to-moment dental procedure.
Commonly referred to as “laughing gas,” nitrous oxide is used as a mild sedative to reduce anxiety and allow a level of relaxation during a procedure. Nitrous oxide is inhaled through a small mask over the nose. It is administered for the duration of the procedure and is turned off as the procedure is coming to an end. The effects of this method of sedation wear off very quickly.
Teeth that have been stained or darkened by food, tobacco use, age, medications or injury can be lightened and brightened by means of a non-invasive process known as teeth whitening.
Teeth whitening or bleaching simply refers to any process that will make the teeth appear whiter. While there are many over the counter options for teeth whitening, the most effective and safest teeth whitening systems are the professional strength ones available at the dentist’s office. A dental professional whitening system offers a higher concentration of whitening components and delivers them to the teeth in the most efficient manner to achieve optimal results.
At our office we offer a professional take home system. Our professional strength take home system produces excellent results.
The VELscope® is an advanced oral assessment technology system that offers clinicians the ability to visualize oral tissue abnormalities that may indicate the presence of oral cancer or pre-malignant dysplasia. A VELscope evaluation is quick, painless, and can be easily incorporated into an oral cancer screening visit.
The VELscope is a handheld scope that utilizes an imaging modality that is sensitive to changes in the natural tissue fluorescence of the oral mucosa. The bright blue light of the VELscope can distinguish healthy soft tissue inside the mouth from soft tissue that has undergone pathological changes.
This ability to identify, evaluate and monitor abnormal soft tissue changes that might not be caught otherwise makes the VELscope an excellent addition to a periodic head and neck exam.
As the most recognizable expression and the universal sign of happiness, a beautiful smile is an important asset. Studies show that an attractive smile can boost your self-confidence, contribute to your overall well-being, and help make a positive impression on everyone you meet.
If your front teeth are stained, discolored, chipped, worn-down, misshapen, a little gapped, or slightly misaligned, you're not alone. According to statistics, more than one-third of adults in the United States are dissatisfied with the appearance of their smiles. Cosmetic imperfections may be due to genetics, excessive wear and tear on the teeth, the aging process, dietary choices that stain the dental enamel, smoking, or as a side effect of certain medications.
In some cases, if the imperfections are minor ones, a teeth whitening procedure or cosmetic bonding may be all it takes to create a more perfect-looking smile. However, darker dental stains, discolorations, and more significant flaws involving the size, shape, and alignment of the teeth, are sometimes better addressed with porcelain veneers.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we recognize that every smile is different and tailor treatment to address individual needs and expectations of care. Whether your smile is best served by the fabrication of dental veneers or another cosmetic dental procedure we provide, you can count on our office for the latest, most effective, pleasing, and healthy solutions for your smile.
One of the most conservative yet highly effective and aesthetically pleasing ways to transform the appearance of imperfect looking teeth is the fabrication of dental veneers. Fully customized to the exact specifications of your smile and the cosmetic corrections required, veneers are ultra-thin facings, seamlessly bonded to the fronts of the involved teeth.
This versatile and minimally-invasive cosmetic procedure conceals a range of imperfections to dramatically improve the look of teeth that are misshapen, exhibit minor chips, enamel defects, or stains. They also provide an excellent solution for closing small gaps as well as addressing other minor alignment issues.
Among the chief benefits offered by veneers are that they require little to no preparation of the underlying tooth and offer a relatively quick way to achieve long-lasting and pleasing results. And because they are ultra-thin, veneers preserve the maximum amount of natural tooth structure and are kind to the tissues along the gumline.
Whether you're looking to improve the appearance of a single front tooth or multiple ones, dental veneers can turn a less-than-perfect smile into one that appears naturally beautiful and flawless.
Your veneers are fabricated from the highest quality of dental-grade porcelain to recreate the natural translucency of healthy tooth enamel. Since porcelain reflects light in much the same way as dental enamel, veneers produce a vibrant, flawless, and naturally beautiful-looking smile.
From preparation to taking an impression and placement, the entire process of getting dental veneers only takes a few visits. Furthermore, even though a veneer is fragile to handle before placement in the mouth, once it gets bonded to the underlying tooth, it becomes quite strong and durable. With proper oral hygiene and care, you can maintain your new veneers for many years to come.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we successfully combine the art and science of dentistry to create healthy, beautiful smiles. We've helped many patients enhance the look of their smiles and feel confident we can do the same for you.
The process of getting dental veneers begins with a consultation and thorough assessment of your dental health, oral function, and smile aesthetics. We'll also discuss your smile goals and treatment expectations. Although getting veneers is a relatively quick process, it's essential to address any periodontal problems or cavities in the involved teeth before your new veneers get fabricated.
While the amount of tooth preparation varies, depending on the unique requirements of the case and the type of porcelain veneer, the removal of tooth structure from the front and sides of the tooth is typically quite minimal. It's just enough enamel for the ultra-thin facing to look most natural and remain sturdy and strong when placed.
Once the teeth are prepared, an impression gets taken, and an appropriate shade of porcelain is selected, your new veneers are ready for fabrication. Porcelain veneers are most often sent out to a dental laboratory for custom fabrication. For the short time it takes the permanent ones to come back from the lab, attractive temporary veneer facings cover the teeth.
When your veneers are ready, it's time to check their fit, size, shade, and shape. Prior to getting affixed to the teeth, any adjustments to ensure a precise fit and optimal aesthetics are made. At this time, we'll also confirm that you're pleased with the look of your new smile. Once fitted and approved, the involved teeth are then cleaned, and the veneers are permanently bonded in place with composite resin cement. Following placement, any further adjustments or minor refinements are performed as needed.
Determining if a veneer is suitable or a full-coverage crown is required depends on the extent of the tooth's defects and the remaining amount of healthy tooth structure. For teeth with imperfections that cannot be remedied with a teeth whitening procedure, dental veneers often provide the desired cosmetic improvements. However, a significantly undersized, misshapen, chipped, or darkly stained tooth usually requires a full coverage crown.
Porcelain veneers are fabricated from the highest grade of dental ceramics, which reflect light in much the same way as the enamel of natural teeth. In addition to this feature, dental porcelain is resistant to stains and discolorations, keeping your smile white and vibrant for years to come.
Porcelain veneers are ultra-thin customized facings that become strong and durable once bonded to the underlying teeth. With proper hygiene and routine dental care, veneers provide a cosmetic solution that not only looks and feels completely natural but is also long lasting.
However, just as harmful oral habits can affect your natural teeth, they can also cause damage to your veneers. To prevent chipping, cracking, or dislodging a veneer, avoid nail biting, chewing on hard candies, ice, pens, or pencils, and opening bottles or other objects with your teeth. Also, remember to protect your smile on the playing field by wearing a properly fitted sports mouthguard.
Tooth grinding or bruxism is another important consideration in care. If you clench or grind your teeth, you may need to wear a night guard to help protect your new smile or discuss other options with our office.
As versatile as they are beautiful, dental veneers can be applied to a single tooth in need of cosmetic improvement or multiple front teeth to dramatically improve the look of your smile. Whatever the case may be, dental veneers provide highly satisfying results to create a smile; you'll feel confident sharing with the world.
Among the many benefits offered by dental veneers is their ability to mask a range of imperfections at once. In addition to covering stains or discolorations on the front surface of a tooth, the size and shape of a veneer can also be customize to improve the tooth's contours and dimensions. At the same time veneers create a whiter and more vibrant smile; they can also lengthen or widen a tooth, close minor gaps, and address other minor alignment issues.
The two most common types of veneers are porcelain veneers, also known as porcelain laminates, and composite veneers. Although porcelain veneers are the most commonly offered option in care, composite veneers fabricated directly on the tooth can also achieve excellent results. You may have also heard the term no-prep veneer. It refers to a type of porcelain veneer that requires little to no preparation of the underlying dental enamel. At your consultation visit, we'll discuss your best options in care.
Once they're in place, your veneers are also easy to care for and maintain. Simply by brushing, flossing, and visiting our office for periodic checkups, you can successfully protect and preserve your new and beautiful smile.
Although certain procedures that are considered cosmetic may not be covered by dental insurance, veneers remain a worthwhile investment in your smile. Based on the unique considerations of each case, we develop treatment plans that consider specific dental needs, cosmetic goals, and budget. Our experienced and friendly office staff can address all your insurance questions and review various payment and financing options.
At the office of Caring Bear Dental, we value patient input and pay close attention to your treatment goals, concerns, and expectations in care. When it comes to cosmetic dentistry, we recognize that every smile is unique and never take a “one size fits all” approach to care. We utilize the most advanced diagnostic technology and treatment methods to assess your smile and to design your porcelain veneers for a precise fit and optimal aesthetics.
As experienced providers of care, we provide highly personalized treatment, combining state-of-the-art technology with an artistic touch to produce long-lasting and aesthetically pleasing results of care.
Your child's first visit to our office is very important with regard to establishing their oral health baseline. We will begin by carefully reviewing medical and dental histories and taking special note of all dental concerns, as well as any symptoms that your child may be experiencing.
We take pride in creating and maintaining beautiful and healthy smiles for our younger patients in an environment that is lighthearted and fun. We focus on establishing oral health habits that last a lifetime, with education and prevention as our primary tools.
Tooth decay is the most chronic childhood disease in our country. According to studies, children with poor oral health are more than three times as likely to miss school due to dental pain. While these statistics are alarming, the good news is that tooth decay is for the most part preventable. Scheduling regular checkups and cleanings for your child at the dentist is essential for maintaining their oral health. Beyond routine dental care, your dental care professional will help your child establish the best oral hygiene homecare regimen to help maintain a healthy smile for a lifetime. The dentist will also provide dietary guidance as to which foods can be harmful to your child's smile. As added protection against dental decay, periodic fluoride treatments to strengthen the enamel of your child's new teeth and the application of dental sealants when the permanent molars come into place are recommended.
The role of fluoride is especially important for children as it improves the quality of dental enamel in their developing teeth and makes their new teeth more resistant to decay. As part of your child’s preventive dental care program at our office, fluoride varnish is applied during their routine checkup appointments and if indicated at regular intervals between these visits.
Fluoride varnish is a topically applied product that is brushed onto all sides of your child’s teeth. It is a completely safe and painless procedure that takes just a couple of minutes from start to finish. Once applied and in contact with your child’s saliva the fluoride hardens. The fluoride component is now absorbed into the dental enamel and begins its job of strengthening the tooth.
Following the application of the fluoride varnish, your child does not have to wait to eat or drink. The only restriction is that foods are soft and not crunchy for the rest of the day. Brushing and flossing may be postponed for several hours.
While fluoride varnish can help prevent cavities and slow their progression, it is not a guarantee against dental decay. Optimal dental health for your child involves an excellent oral hygiene regimen at home, routine dental care and eating a healthy diet.
When tooth structure is eaten away or otherwised damaged by dental decay, cracks or fractures, it can often be repaired by means of the placement of a dental filling. While traditional fillings were typically composed of amalgam, a mixture of different metals, today’s fillings are frequently tooth-colored. These “white fillings” invisibly restore the form and function of the involved tooth so that it seamlessly blends in with the remaining tooth structure. Tooth colored fillings are made of the latest generation of composite resin materials in which filler particles are bound together when set by a hard matrix material. Strong and durable, tooth colored fillings are chemically bonded to fill and rebuild a tooth once the decayed or damaged tooth structure has been removed. First placed as a putty-like material, tooth colored fillings are carefully shaped to restore the contours of a healthy natural tooth and then cured (set) with a light wand. In addition to restoring teeth affected by damage or decay, composite resins can also be used to cosmetically change the size, color or shape of teeth with imperfections or minor alignment issues such as spacing.
Stainless steel crowns are durable restorations that are typically used as a means of restoring primary molar teeth that have been compromised by decay, trauma, or that have had a pulpotomy procedure. These strong metal caps are permanently cemented in place, protecting what remains of the underlying tooth and preventing it from decaying further. Stainless steel crowns are individually sized and fitted to cover and seal off the affected tooth. As they have a smooth and polished surface, they are easy to clean and maintain. Until the baby tooth is lost, the stainless steel crown allows some level of tooth function and can successfully maintain the space for the coming permanent tooth.
Inside of every baby (deciduous) and permanent adult tooth is a central chamber that contains connective tissue, a nerve supply, and blood vessels. Collectively these core tissues, known as the dental pulp, help the tooth to grow and mature before it emerges into the mouth. Once your tooth is in place, the dental pulp provides nourishment, keeps the tooth vital, and alerts you of problems. Unfortunately, cavities and dental trauma can damage the dental pulp inside of a tooth. When one of these factors has involved the dental pulp of a primary or deciduous tooth and there is no evidence of an infection at the root of the tooth, a procedure known as a pulpotomy may be performed. The purpose of a pulpotomy on a “baby” tooth is to maintain it until its permanent successor tooth erupts. This is because deciduous teeth that are lost prematurely can result in space loss for the permanent tooth and other consequences. During a pulpotomy procedure, the exposed or affected pulp tissue within the crown of the deciduous tooth (the visible portion of the tooth) is carefully removed and a special medication to disinfect the area and calm the remaining nerve tissue is placed. Once the procedure is complete, the baby tooth is then restored. Depending on the amount of tooth structure remaining and how much time is left before the baby tooth is to fall out, the type of restoration is selected. Typically, the most effective restoration to seal the tooth and restore function, is a stainless steel crown.
Sometimes it is necessary to extract a tooth. This can happen for a variety of reasons. Extractions are commonly performed in cases where a deciduous “baby” tooth is reluctant to fall out, a severely broken down and non-restorable tooth is present, or “wisdom tooth” is poorly positioned and unable to fully erupt into place.
To reduce any anxiety and insure patient comfort whenever a tooth extraction is necessary, the procedure, the post surgical instructions, as well as any restorative follow-up care will be carefully and completely explained.
Dental emergencies in children can arise for a number of reasons. Recognizing the fact that children have active lifestyles, means there is always a chance an accident involving a hit or blow to the mouth or teeth can occur. These traumatic injuries can happen at home, in the playground or on the playing field. Common injuries to the teeth and oral cavity seen in a pediatric dental office include everything from soft tissue lacerations of the lips, cheeks or tongue to chipped, fractured, dislodged or “knocked out” teeth. Equally frequent reasons for children to require urgent dental care are painful toothaches, dental infections, and mouth ulcerations. Whatever the dental emergency may be, prompt and effective care is required to alleviate a child’s discomfort and to prevent more serious consequences to their oral health and overall well-being.
Pediatric dentists are trained in all facets of dental care for children and are well equipped to handle a wide range of dental emergencies. They provide skilled and compassionate care, helping children to feel comfortable and safe while restoring their oral health and function.
Digital radiography utilizes computer technology and digital sensors for the acquisition, viewing, storage, and sharing of radiographic images. It offers several advantages over the older traditional film based methods of taking x-rays. The most significant of theses advantages is that digital radiography reduces a patient’s exposure to radiation. Other benefits are that images can be viewed instantly after being taken, can be seen simultaneously as needed by multiple practitioners, and can be easily shared with other offices. Digital x-rays are also safer for the environment as they do not require any chemicals or paper to develop.
An electronic pad, known as a sensor is used instead of film to acquire a digital image. After the image is taken, it goes directly into the patient’s file on the computer. Once it is stored on the computer, it can be easily viewed on a screen, shared, or printed out.
When children are scared, have strong gag reflexes, medical conditions, special needs, or are unable to sit for one reason or another, varying levels dental sedation can carefully be administered to aid relaxation and allow dental care to be performed. Depending on the particular needs of each child, the pedodontist will suggest the best method of dental sedation. There are several options in dental sedation available for your child, including inhalation sedation such as nitrous oxide (laughing gas), oral sedatives, IV sedation, as well as general anesthesia performed in the appropriate setting for particular procedures or circumstances. Each of these options has special considerations, which will be explained in greater detail before your child’s dental procedure is scheduled.
As part of your child’s dental prevention program, dental sealants are often recommended to protect their permanent back teeth from developing dental decay. In fact according to the American Dental Association, dental sealants reduce the risk of cavities in molars by approximately 80%.
While establishing a good oral hygiene regimen, maintaining proper toothbrushing habits, and avoiding sticky sweets are essential for the prevention of dental decay, children’s teeth often need more protection. The reason for this is that the deeply grooved chewing surfaces of the back permanent teeth can be difficult for a child to keep free of leftover food and cavity-causing bacteria. Moreover, young children do not always brush their teeth, as often or as thoroughly as they should, making them particularly vulnerable to dental decay.
Dental sealants afford additional protection from dental decay by providing a strong plastic-like protective coating for the chewing surfaces of a child’s permanent back teeth. They basically fill in the pits, fissures and grooves on these teeth to seal out harmful bacteria and food particles. Beyond preventing the development of cavities, sealants may also be useful over areas of incipient dental decay to stop further damage from occurring.
Applying dental sealants is a relatively quick and painless process. They are simply brushed on in a series of steps during a child’s dental visit and then cured (set) with a light wand. Sealants are strong and durable and can last for several years. The condition of your child’s dental sealants will be evaluated at each checkup and reapplied if the need arises.
Sometimes, due to tooth decay or a traumatic injury, a child may lose a primary tooth early, before the permanent one underneath is ready to come into place. When this happens, the dentist will consider the best way to hold the space left by the baby tooth in order to maintain a clear path for the succeeding adult tooth. While not every situation where a baby tooth is lost early needs an intervention to maintain the space, many times a small dental appliance known as a space maintainer is required to make sure the permanent tooth does not become crowded out of the dental arch or impacted by shifting adjacent teeth.
Space maintainers are fixed or removable appliances that are designed to keep the integrity of the space left by the lost tooth. Simple and comfortable to wear, the type and design of your child’s space maintainer will be determined by our dentist. Once the permanent tooth begins to emerge, a space maintainer is no longer necessary.
A generation ago it was extremely unusual to see an adult with braces on their teeth. Today that is no longer the case. Thanks to advances in dental technology, greater access to care, and an increased awareness of the benefits of a beautiful and healthy smile; now over twenty percent of people wearing orthodontic appliances are adults.
With the wide variety of orthodontic treatment options available to adults, the process of wearing braces is more convenient, more comfortable, more efficient and much less conspicuous than ever before. Bulky metal braces are truly a thing of the past. The latest generations of metal appliances are substantially smaller and less unsightly than any of their predecessors. Moreover, an adult interested in orthodontic care can select braces that are hardly visible at all. Today’s tooth -colored ceramic braces, lingual braces or removable clear aligners can all effectively deliver treatment to achieve successful and pleasing outcomes of care.
Although, adult orthodontics requires an investment of time and resources the payoff is well worth it. The value of a healthy and attractive smile is priceless. Thanks to modern orthodontics, having teeth that look good and function well is something that can be enjoyed at any age.
A healthy, functional and attractive smile requires teeth that are straight and jaws that are well aligned. A good bite with teeth that are straight not only looks good, it contributes to overall oral health and well being.
Braces are orthodontic devices that are used to address problems such as crooked, gapped or crowded teeth, overbites or underbites and improper jaw relationships. With advances in orthodontic technology and systems of care, a wide selection of braces is available today. Providing effective and efficient care, these choices are far less bulky, much less noticeable, and more comfortable than previous generations of braces.
The type of braces the dentist recommends for a patient’s case depends on several factors including:
ClearCorrect® invisible braces offer an alternative to traditional braces so you can show off your smile with confidence throughout care. ClearCorrect straightens teeth using a series of clear, custom-made, removable aligners that incrementally move the teeth a little bit at a time, eventually aligning the teeth to improve the look and function of your smile.
ClearCorrect can be used to treat:
Designed with aesthetics in mind, ClearCorrect aligners are custom fitted to your teeth to provide an irritation-free treatment, with nearly no adjustment discomfort. Unlike traditional braces, ClearCorrect aligners are barely noticeable and won’t hinder your ability to perform routine oral hygiene tasks or interfere with eating and speaking.
Clear Correct aligners are made from a BPA-free and durable material called Zendura that is specially designed to withstand the stresses of oral function – meaning that the aligners are resistant to becoming deformed under biting pressure.
With ClearCorrect, achieving your ideal smile is easy and effortless. Plus, since your clear aligners are removable, you can take them out to brush, floss, and eat your favorite foods. ClearCorrect fits your life and daily routine as perfectly as it fits your teeth, so you don't need to change a thing.
Often habits such as prolonged thumb sucking, tongue thrusting, and certain swallowing or breathing patterns that can open or distort the bite are better dealt with when care is initiated at a younger age. Interceptive treatment is also helpful when the top jaw is too narrow, not developing in harmony with the lower jaw, or permanent top teeth are behind the lower ones when closing the jaws. Likewise, if a young child’s front teeth protrude excessively or very severe crowding is present a first phase of orthodontic care can be beneficial.
The objectives of interceptive treatment and a first phase of orthodontic care are to influence jaw growth, create more space for crowded teeth, help to correct harmful habits, and improve facial aesthetics. With interceptive treatment the likelihood of impacted permanent teeth as well as the need for extractions of permanent teeth can be lessened. Interceptive treatment can also simplify the next phase of orthodontic care.
Invisalign®* is a form of orthodontic treatment that works to correct many different types of malocclusions through the use of a series of clear plastic trays called aligners. In many cases it provides an excellent treatment alternative to traditional orthodontic braces and metal wires.
Invisalign utilizes 3-D computer imaging technology to correct problematic bites or malocclusions by planning a complete sequence of custom-made clear aligners. This series of clear aligners, each of which is worn for a couple of weeks, incrementally move the teeth into place until the final desired corrections are reached.
The advantage and appeal of Invisalign appliances is that they are more cosmetic and more comfortable than most other orthodontic appliances. With Invisalign appliances orthodontic treatment is practically “invisible.”
Invisalign®* offers adults and teens a more cosmetic, comfortable and convenient alternative to other types of orthodontic appliances.
Designed to move teeth through a planned sequence of clear aligners, Invisalign is virtually invisible to the outside world. Transforming smiles with minimal interference to daily activities, Invisalign allows teens and adults to enjoy eating all of their favorite foods, and engage in sports without the fear of breaking their orthodontic appliances or sharp poking wires. Moreover, as the aligners are completely removable, toothbrushing and flossing is much easier. There is no need to struggle to clean in between and around any attached orthodontic brackets and wires.
While not a solution for every type of orthodontic case, treatment with Invisalign is an excellent choice for many image-conscious teens and adults. The most discrete and easy to wear option in orthodontic care, Invisalign for teens also features a special blue dot indicator to monitor treatment compliance.
*Invisalign is a registered trademark of Align Technology, Inc.
Other types of orthodontic appliances may also be used during the course of treatment. Some of these appliances are removable and can be taken in and out of the mouth, while others will be attached to the teeth until they are no longer needed.
Depending upon the specific needs of the case, these appliances may be used to accomplish a number of things including:
Most problems involving the alignment of your child’s teeth and the growth of their jaws can be identified by the time they are in the first or second grade. That is why the American Association of Orthodontists recommends that all children have a check up with an orthodontic specialist no later than age 7. At this visit the orthodontist will carefully examine your child’s bite and assess the alignment and development of the teeth. The orthodontist will also look at the growth and relationships of the jaws, and in particular check for any shifts or dysfunction. It will also be determined if any premature tooth loss, habits, swallowing or breathing patterns are having an effect on your child’s occlusion.
Following this visit the orthodontist will indicate if any immediate preventative or interceptive orthodontic care is needed. In many circumstances no treatment is required right away and the child can be observed until it is the appropriate time for care. Your child’s dental development as well as their prospective facial growth will be carefully considered in outlining the best timetable for care.
Orthodontic treatment for children typically begins between the ages of 9 and 14. At this time they are generally in the mid to late mixed dentition stage. This means they have a mix of permanent front teeth, permanent molars, and some baby teeth. The benefit of placing braces at this stage is that the orthodontist can improve the alignment of permanent front teeth, guide the incoming new adult teeth into position, and utilize the child’s growth and development to best advantage.
Often habits such as prolonged thumb sucking, tongue thrusting, and certain swallowing or breathing patterns that can open or distort the bite are better dealt with when care is initiated at a younger age. Early treatment is also helpful when the top jaw is too narrow, not developing in harmony with the lower jaw, or if permanent top teeth are behind the lower ones when closing the jaws. Likewise, if a young child’s front teeth protrude excessively or very severe crowding is present a first phase of orthodontic care can be beneficial.
The objectives of early treatment and a first phase of orthodontic care are to influence jaw growth, create more space for crowded teeth, help to correct harmful habits, and improve facial aesthetics. With early treatment the likelihood of impacted permanent teeth as well as the need for extractions of permanent teeth can be lessened. Early treatment can also simplify the next phase of orthodontic care.
Greater than half of all orthodontic patients are teenagers between the ages of 12 to 17 years. At this stage of development most of their permanent teeth, with the exception of the wisdom teeth, have already erupted into place. Any problems with the alignment of the teeth, issues with the bite, as well as discrepancies in jaw relationships are readily detectable at this time, making your teen an excellent candidate for orthodontic care.
The teenage years are typically a time of significant physical and emotional development. In addition to acquiring a more adult appearance, teens are developing a heightened sense of self-awareness, building self-confidence, and investing more in peer relationships. Having teeth that are crooked, gapped, crowded, or protruding can have a negative impact on their self-image as well as their self-esteem. In addition to that, malocclusions can predispose teens to TMJ issues, headaches, and dental disease.
Helping your teen to achieve a well aligned, more pleasing, and healthier smile means making a commitment to orthodontic care. Although orthodontic treatment involves wearing some type of appliances and takes time, the ultimate reward of a beautiful smile is well worth the effort.
The good news is that, thanks to advances in modern orthodontics today’s image conscious teens can choose from a wide selection of braces that are far less bulky, much less noticeable, and more comfortable than ever before.
At the start of your orthodontic care, our office will review with you how to handle most cases of broken or loose braces, as well as irritations due to your appliances. While some situations can be adequately managed until your next scheduled visit, others will require immediate professional attention. Keep in mind that loose and damaged orthodontic appliances are often the result of eating the wrong foods or harmful oral habits such as biting your nails or chewing on ice, pencils, and pens. However, there are occasions when even with normal usage and good care a brace will break, a protruding wire can become irritating, or elastic accessories will dislodge.
Common orthodontic emergencies may include:
Although all of the above situations can be uncomfortable and upsetting, other problems can develop that fall into the category of serious health emergencies. If you start to experience severe pain, develop significant swelling, or have sustained an injury to the teeth, the mouth, or jaws, it is essential to get prompt medical and dental attention. Once the extent of your injury or infection has been determined, it can be treated accordingly. As your orthodontist, we will work with your medical and dental team to adjust, remove, or replace your appliances as needed.
Preserving and stabilizing the result of your orthodontic treatment is known as “retention” and the appliances used for this purpose are called “retainers”. Almost every individual who has undergone orthodontic care will need to wear some type of a retainer.
There are two major kinds of orthodontic retainers. A removable retainer is one that can be taken in and out of the mouth, while a permanent retainer is fixed or bonded to the back of the teeth. Before removing your braces our orthodontist will explain which of the available retainer options you will need to maintain your smile.
Removable retainers come in two forms. A Hawley retainer is the most traditional orthodontic retainer. It is typically an acrylic based appliance with a single wire that sits in front of the teeth to maintain the corrections along with some small clasps to stabilize it in the mouth. The other type of removable retainer is a vacuform “invisible” retainer, which is called an Essix retainer. This retainer looks similar to a clear custom bleaching tray or dental aligner. It is made of a thin transparent plastic that is fabricated to precisely fit over the teeth and prevent any unwanted shifting. While a Hawley retainer has the advantages of being quite durable and easy to adjust, an Essix retainer is less visible and can be easier to adapt to wearing.
In some cases a fixed retainer may be recommended to maintain a corrected smile. A fixed retainer is a special thin wire that is bonded to the back of the front teeth. It remains in place all of the time and does not show at all when you smile. This type of retainer is a good option when there’s a high risk that teeth could revert to their former position, especially the lower front teeth. A fixed retainer provides excellent stability, but requires extra care to keep the teeth and gums around the appliance clean.
At the time your retainers are inserted, we will provide you with detailed guidelines for wearing these appliances as well as directions as to how to clean and care for them.
If a child’s facial growth and development does not proceed in a normal and harmonious manner, then the jaws may not achieve the proper relationship or alignment. This can present an individual with varying degrees of functional and cosmetic problems. When the jaws are not in the anatomically correct positions it can have a negative effect on the occlusion (the bite), facial symmetry and balance, as well as the temporomandibular joint. Problematic jaw relationships can even make eating, speaking, and normal breathing more difficult.
Orthodontic treatment alone is often insufficient to address all of the issues caused by these improper or disproportionate jaw relationships. Orthognathic surgery, more commonly known as corrective jaw surgery, is sometimes necessary to help address these skeletal and dental irregularities.
Orthognathic surgery involves a team approach with an orthodontist preparing and finalizing the alignment of the teeth along with an oral and maxillofacial surgeon to treatment plan and perform the corrective jaw procedures. If needed, other specialists may be involved in treating the patient to address any additional dental or medical issues necessary to achieve the best functional and cosmetic results.
The most common type of braces seen today remain “metal braces”. Made of high-grade stainless steel these braces are significantly smaller and have a lower profile than their predecessors from years ago. Each brace, which is known as an orthodontic bracket, is individually bonded to the front of each tooth. Metal braces allow for efficient and highly controllable tooth movement.
According to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR), temporomandibular joint disorders (TMJ), also referred to as temporomandibular disorders (TMD), are the most common source of chronic facial pain and jaw dysfunction. It is estimated that more than 10 million people in the United States are affected by temporomandibular joint problems.
There are two temporomandibular joints that connect the left and right sides of the lower jaw to the temporal bone. Both joints and their associated muscles, ligaments and tendons work together to allow for all manner of oral function as the jaw moves up and down, front to back and from side to side. Containing a shock-absorbing, soft disc that sits between the rounded condyles of both sides of the lower jaw and the corresponding concavities in the skull’s temporal bone, the TMJ makes chewing, speaking, yawning and all jaw movements possible.
Since the TMJ is a joint with both up and down hinge-like movements, as well as side to side and front to back sliding motions to perform, it is often considered one of the most complicated joints in the body and one of the most difficult to treat when problems arise.
TMJ disorders can fall into one or more of the following three categories:
Myofascial pain- Refers to pain in the area of the jaw joint due to various causes of increased muscle tension and spasm
Internal derangement-Involves displacement of the disc, jaw dislocation or trauma to the condyles of the jaw
Degenerative joint disease -Arthritis
The risk for developing a TMJ problem is greater in the presence of long-term teeth grinding or bruxism, a jaw injury or various types of arthritis such as rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. Furthermore, the manifestations of a TMJ disorder can vary from person to person with a wide range of symptoms possible, including earaches, ringing in the ears (tinnitus), headaches, back and neck pain, vertigo, muscle spasms and joint tenderness as well as jaw pain, popping or grating sounds with jaw movement, jaw locking and limited jaw movement. For some people a TMJ disorder can be resolved within a relatively short period of time, while for others it will continue to persist despite extensive therapy.
When evaluating for the presence of a TMJ disorder, the dentist will perform a thorough clinical assessment of joint symptoms and function. Special radiographic imaging and other diagnostic tests will be ordered as needed. The treatment of a TMJ disorder may include oral appliances such as night guards or stabilization splints to alleviate strain on the joints. Other types of therapy may include steroid injections, occlusal adjustments as well as orthodontic or prosthodontic treatment to improve occlusion. In cases of persistent and serious TMJ problems, surgery may be recommended.
Methods of self-care can be helpful in alleviating some of the symptoms of a TMJ disorder. Patients are typically advised to eat soft foods, avoid extreme jaw movement such as wide yawning and gum chewing, to practice stress reduction and relaxation techniques and applying ice packs or moist heat as directed. If recommended, a patient should follow the dentist or therapist’s instruction for gentle stretching exercises. The short-term use of over-the-counter, non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory drugs and pain medications may provide relief. If not the dentist or physician may prescribe stronger pain or anti-inflammatory drugs, muscle relaxants or anti-depressants.