Posts for: March, 2019
For some time now, you’ve noticed things about your teeth and gums — your overall smile — that you would like to change. But you’re in unfamiliar territory: you don’t know where to begin.
Here, then, are a few basic cosmetic dentistry questions you should ask yourself and us to get you moving in the right direction.
Am I a candidate for cosmetic dentistry? Invariably, the answer is yes — there’s always a way to enhance your appearance, starting with basic hygiene or whitening. But whether you’re a candidate for a particular procedure will depend on a full examination of your mouth — a “smile analysis” — to assess its current condition and needs, and what cosmetic options would best fit those needs.
Are my expectations realistic? That will first depend on what we find with your smile analysis. It will, however, also include studying the bigger picture — how certain changes might affect not only your smile but your overall facial appearance. Your wants and desires are extremely important in this process, but they should also be balanced with a dose of reality — some things may not be in your best interest health-wise to undertake, or are not in keeping with basic aesthetic principles of beauty.
Will I be able to have an idea beforehand how the changes will look? We’ve come a long way in providing patients ways to preview their new smile before undertaking a procedure. It’s often possible to “see” your proposed smile through computer simulation, or in some cases “test drive” it with temporary (provisional) crowns or veneers. For restorations involving porcelain crowns, it may be possible to take your input and fine-tune the shape and color of the permanent crown before it’s completed.
What will it cost? This will depend on the treatment plan we develop. Some treatments like teeth whitening are relatively inexpensive, while procedures like dental implants or orthodontics are major investments. You should also consider the costs to your time — some treatments require only a single visit, while others may take months or even years to complete. Depending on your financial means and comfort level, cost will need to be factored into the final plan, as well as your expectations.
If you would like more information on cosmetic dentistry, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Cosmetic Dentistry: A Time for a Change.”
How many actresses have portrayed a neuroscientist on a wildly successful TV comedy while actually holding an advanced degree in neuroscience? As far as we know, exactly one: Mayim Bialik, who plays the lovably geeky Amy Farrah Fowler on CBS' The Big Bang Theory… and earned her PhD from UCLA.
Acknowledging her nerdy side, Bialik recently told Dear Doctor magazine, “I'm different, and I can't not be different.” Yet when it comes to her family's oral health, she wants the same things we all want: good checkups and great-looking smiles. “We're big on teeth and oral care,” she said. “Flossing is really a pleasure in our house.”
How does she get her two young sons to do it?
Bialik uses convenient pre-loaded floss holders that come complete with floss and a handle. “I just keep them in a little glass right next to the toothbrushes so they're open, no one has to reach, they're just right there,” she said. “It's really become such a routine, I don't even have to ask them anymore.”
As many parents have discovered, establishing healthy routines is one of the best things you can do to maintain your family's oral health. Here are some other oral hygiene tips you can try at home:
Brush to the music — Plenty of pop songs are about two minutes long… and that's the length of time you should brush your teeth. If brushing in silence gets boring, add a soundtrack. When the music's over — you're done!
Flossing can be fun — If standard dental floss doesn't appeal, there are many different styles of floss holders, from functional ones to cartoon characters… even some with a martial-arts theme! Find the one that your kids like best, and encourage them to use it.
The eyes don't lie — To show your kids how well (or not) they are cleaning their teeth, try using an over-the-counter disclosing solution. This harmless product will temporarily stain any plaque or debris that got left behind after brushing, so they can immediately see where they missed, and how to improve their hygiene technique — which will lead to better health.
Have regular dental exams & cleanings — When kids see you're enthusiastic about going to the dental office, it helps them feel the same way… and afterward, you can point out how great it feels to have a clean, sparkling smile.
You'd love to change some of your smile defects. Two problems really bother you: a chipped incisor and a gap between your two front teeth. At 1st Choice Dental Care in Woodstock and Kennesaw, your team of four dentists and their professional staff frequently recommend porcelain veneers to refresh smiles and correct obvious defects. Learn more about these ceramic laminates and how they could help your smile be all you want it to be.
What are porcelain veneers?
They are a very popular cosmetic dentistry treatment at 1st Choice Dental in Woodstock and Kennesaw. Thin and tooth-shaped, these realistic laminates cover the front of teeth marred by:
- Stains which cannot be whitened
- Craze lines (vertical cracks in tooth enamel)
- Uneven tooth length and odd shape
- Overlapping and crowding
Custom-fabricated at a dental lab in the area, veneers regularize tooth size, configuration and color and also strengthen tooth structure. Your dentist removes a thin portion of enamel from each tooth and takes oral impressions and photos to give the lab ceramist specifics on how your smile is to look and bite. A tooth-colored cement renders natural-looking shading and also creates a solid bond between tooth and veneer.
The veneer process
It takes two to three visits to 1st Choice Dental Care. The first is your complimentary consultation during which your dentist will examine your teeth and gums and detail a treatment plan right for your oral health, personal appearance and of course, your preferences. The American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry asserts that this phase of treatment is critical to your smile's longevity and to your personal satisfaction with your makeover--no matter how simple or extensive it may be.
The other appointments involve the impressions, enamel preparation and veneer placement and adjustment. In all, it may be a few weeks before you have your permanent veneers in place.
At home, you'll adjust to your laminates relatively quickly. And, as you care for them, be sure to carefully floss and brush, and avoid hard foods such as taffy and nuts. Get your six-month dental check-ups and cleanings, and you should see your porcelain veneers last at least ten years.
Learn all you can
Arrange a cosmetic dentistry consultation at 1st Choice Dental Care today to find out how our dentists can help you achieve your brightest and most attractive smile. Porcelain veneers could be part of your care plan. For either our Woodstock or Kennesaw, GA, location, phone (678) 293-8773.
We can do a great many things to preserve diseased teeth, from filling cavities to crowning damaged but still viable teeth to protect them and restore their attractiveness. But there may come a point where continued treatment just isn't worth it, and it may be time to remove and replace your troubled teeth.
Dental implants have become the premier restoration for missing teeth. But they have some anatomical limitations and may not work for some situations like excessive bone loss or close nerve proximity. And while a removable partial denture is a solid option, perhaps you'd rather have a fixed solution.
You might then want to consider a fixed bridge to replace one or more missing teeth. This tried and true option has been a mainstay in dentistry for several decades; and while implants may have surpassed them in popularity, they're still available and effective as a restorative option.
A traditional fixed bridge is composed of three or more life-like crowns that are fused together like pickets in a fence. The crown or crowns in the middle fill the empty tooth space; the outside crowns fit over and are bonded to the natural teeth on either side of the empty space to support the bridge. These natural teeth must be reduced in size to accommodate the crowns to fit over them.
Depending on how many teeth are missing, fixed bridges can be a more affordable alternative to dental implants and can achieve life-like results in both form and dental function. But the alterations required for the supporting teeth are permanent and can weaken them. The interface between the natural teeth and the bridge crowns has a higher risk of decay and periodontal disease, so you'll need to be extra vigilant with daily hygiene and regular dental cleanings and checkups.
And even though implants can be more expensive in the short-term, they typically have better durability and less maintenance costs than other restorations. Over the long-term, an implant restoration might actually incur less cost than a fixed bridge.
Still, a fixed bridge can be an effective way to replace missing teeth. Depending on your finances and your overall dental health, a bridge could help you regain an attractive smile.
If you would like more information on options for replacing missing teeth, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Crowns & Bridgework.”
A dental crown can help your smile in numerous ways. The process for a traditional crown requires several appointments and long wait times in between. However, a CEREC system allows your dentist to prepare for, design, and create your dental crown in only one visit. Find out more about this revolutionary procedure with 1st Choice Dental Care in Kennesaw and Woodstock, GA.
Do I need a crown?
Dentists use dental crowns in various situations:
- To stabilize a damaged tooth
- To protect a tooth with a large filling
- To secure a dental bridge in place to replace a missing tooth
- To complete a dental implant to replace a missing tooth
- To help make a tooth look better aesthetically
If you have a tooth that is damaged, broken, or has a large filling, your Kennesaw and Woodstock, GA, dentist may suggest a dental crown. Luckily, a CEREC dental crown system allows your dentist to place your dental crown in only one visit.
How does the CEREC crowning process work?
A CEREC system is made up of three main parts:
- a special wand to take a 3D model of the mouth,
- a CAD/CAM software in which to design the crown
- a machine which carves the crown from a block of ceramic or porcelain
Your dentist will prepare your tooth to receive the crown, then make a model of your mouth. The model serves as the basis for your crown’s design. After finalizing the design using the CAD/CAM software, your dentist sends the design to the CEREC machine to create your physical crown. After the creation process, your dentist permanently bonds the crown to your prepared tooth.
Dental Crowns in Kennesaw, GA, and Woodstock, GA
CEREC one-day crowns allow you to complete your crowning process in just one dental appointment. This saves you time and days off of work and school, as well as the fees associated with a dental laboratory which is normally used to create a dental crown.
For more information on CEREC crowns, please contact 1st Choice Dental Care in Kennesaw and Woodstock, GA, at (678) 293-8773 to schedule your appointment today!