A "filling" is necessary after tooth decay is removed by the dentist to replace the missing structure. The procedure is called a filling because a new material fills the hole that decay created. Currently, most teeth are treated with bonded tooth-colored composite resin fillings. Caught early enough, cavities can be treated easily and painlessly. If not treated, decay can lead to tooth pain and/or infection, and ultimately the tooth could need root canal treatment, a crown, or extraction.
Bonding involves adhering composite resin material that is color-matched to the front of the tooth. Bonding is used to repair damage done to the tooth by decay, to alter the alignment of the tooth, to close gaps between the teeth, or for cosmetic purposes. The procedure involves preparing the surface of the tooth in order to accept the bonding and retain it. To achieve this, a gel is applied to micro etch the tooth surface and a primer/bond agent is then applied to make the tooth surface adhesive to the bonding resin. The bonding material is then placed on the tooth and hardened with intense light. For the last step, the composite resin material is crafted and polished to get a natural shape and lustrous finish.
Sealants are used to fill in narrow grooves in a tooth that cannot be adequately cleaned by brushing. In some cases, the tooth structure has fine grooves or pits which accumulate plaque, not because the person doesn't brush, but because the tooth grooves are too narrow to allow even one bristle into them. These pits will develop cavities over time, which is avoidable and undesireable. For prevention, the dentist brushes on a coating that seals the grooves and pits, preventing debris from entering the crevices. The sealant makes it possible to brush off all of the plaque and thereby keep your teeth healthy.
NON-SURGICAL GUM TREATMENTS
The gums, ligaments, and bone of the mouth form the foundation for one's teeth. All of these structures are wholly referred to as the periodontium. When the periodontium is not healthy, it jeopardizes the teeth just as a weak foundation threatens the stability of a house. Signs of an unhealthy periodontium (aka gum disease) may include the following: gums that are red and bleed easily, gums that are pulled away from the tooth, loose teeth, persistent bad breath, and changes in the position or bite of the teeth. Any of these signs may indicate an oral health issue. With the proper care, it may be possible to return the oral environment to a healthy state. Setting up an appropriate gum treatment plan is crucial to remedying a worsening situation. If you are having a problem, come in and see us so that we can take care of it right away. Dr. Masoner is experienced and skilled in treating a wide range of oral maladies. The treatment needed usually involves a deep cleaning or root planing performed under a local anesthetic, often combining this treatment with the application of local antibiotic agents. If the gum disease gets too severe around a tooth, it may need to be treated through periodontal surgery or extraction. This is why it is important to recognize periodontal disease and to treat it at the first sign of a problem as it is possible to prevent further deterioration.
This is a focused beam of X-Ray particles through bone which produces an image on special film, showing the structure through which it passed. The developed x-ray film gives a familiar black and white image that doctors and dentists use to diagnose problems. X-rays are a necessary part of the diagnostic process, and not to use them could lead to undiagnosed disease. Without an X-ray of the whole tooth, and supporting bone and gum tissues, there is no real way to detect infection or pathology that requires attention.
Crowns are full coverage restorations that are used to cover a tooth that is likely to break, or is too broken down to be restored with a filling. They are most commonly done after root canal treatment, or when a large filling may severely weaken a tooth. The larger the hole made by a cavity that has to be treated, the more likely a crown will be needed now or in the future. Even after a filling is put in a large cavity, a tooth is more likely to break. Keep in mind that the jaw muscles are the strongest in the human body. Teeth are subjected to tremendous pressures sometimes exceeding 1100 pounds per square inch. Crowns cover over the weakened tooth, providing strength and protecting the tooth against breakage. A broken or cracked tooth is a far more serious matter and much more difficult to treat. Crowns prevent this, as well as helping create an attractive smile.
It takes two appointments to restore a tooth with a crown. In the first any decay is removed from the tooth and it is shaped to accept the crown. Then an impression is made of the tooth for use in fabricating a crown. Between the two visits the crown is made, usually of high-strength porcelain over gold alloy, all ceramic material, or gold. During this time a temporary crown is worn. In the second visit this temporary is removed. Then the permanent crown is adjusted as needed and then cemented in place. This office only uses the best ADA certified materials and laboratories when fabricating crowns for our patients.
There are different types of dentures, but they share their common function. They replace teeth that have become loose or been lost due to bone loss. When bone loss around the roots of teeth is great enough to loosen them or let them fall out, it's time for dentures. Relax. No one enjoys losing their natural teeth, but you can still eat and talk regularly.
The entire mouth is examined and a determination is made as to which teeth will have to be removed, and which will remain. The loose teeth are then extracted. Dentures are fitted to go over or around whatever teeth remain in the mouth, depending on the type. There is an adjustment period after dentures are placed in the mouth, and it can take some getting used to. But once accustomed to the dentures, all the normal functionality and appearance return and one just carries on as usual. Often implants can used to further stabilize the dentures.
A dental implant is an option to replace a missing tooth. In this procedure, a small titanium shaft is surgically implanted into the bone and allowed to set (this is called a 'root form'). The bone grows around it forming a tight connection, which additionally slows or stops the bone loss that occurs when the root of a natural tooth is missing. Once the implant is firmly set in the mouth, the dentist then uses a technique to attach the replacement tooth onto the artificial root. This permanent solution has the advantages over bridgework in that it does not stress the surrounding teeth for support, and, should the tooth wear out, another can simply be replaced on the artificial root.
Implants can also be used for support as part of an implant bridge. This is an alternative to partial dentures, and has several advantages. First, there is no adjustment period to acclimatize the patient who, once the work is done, only feels teeth, not metal supports intruding into the mouth. Second, this slows the bone loss occasioned by missing teeth. Third, there is no discomfort or difficulty in eating. And, best of all, of course, they don't have to be taken out all the time.
Should you have any questions about implants, please call our office for a free consultation.
ROOT CANAL TREATMENT
Root canal treatment (also referred to as root canal therapy or endodontic therapy) is made necessary when a cavity is allowed to reach all the way to this pulp. (Regular cleanings and checkups prevent and detect problems early) Sometimes deep restorations or trauma to a tooth may cause the nerve to be damaged to the point it where it may need root canal therapy as the nerve may become devital. Once this occurs the pulp becomes infected, and can even extend through the root tip and begin to infect the surrounding bone (this is an abscess). By the time the pulp is infected it must be treated, and cannot heal on its own. It can even weaken the body's entire immune system. This is dangerous, not to mention very painful. Symptoms that the pulp has become infected may include sensitivity to hot/cold or sweets, pain, swelling, pain to biting or pressure, and a bad taste in the mouth. Sometimes, however, no symptoms are apparent and the person is unaware of any problem until a checkup reveals a problem.
A root canal is then performed to clean out the infected tooth pulp, and disinfect the canals of the tooth. The only other treatment would be to extract the tooth. Once the infection is resolved, the canal(s) are filled in to prevent any further infection. Usually a core build-up and crown is recommended for restoring a tooth that has had root canal therapy.
This is an option for filling the space created by a missing tooth. It is formed to look like the missing tooth, and it takes its place in the mouth. The sides of a bridge use the two surrounding teeth for support, hence the name. A bridge replaces the missing tooth, both functionally and cosmetically. Bridge work is as much an art as it is an exact science. The materials used may be gold alloys, porcelain bonded to metal alloy, or all ceramic material. The choice of material depends on requirements for strength, wear, and/or esthetics. This office uses only the best ADA certified materials and laboratories when fabricating crowns and bridges for our patients.
It is important that a missing tooth be replaced as soon as possible for several reasons. If not treated the teeth surrounding the gap begin to shift inward, creating a whole chain reaction of bad things. Teeth use their neighbors for support, and, with one missing, they start to "fall." As this worsens the bite changes in response to the pressure. This can eventually result in problems with the entire jaw, e.g. TMJ. The surrounding teeth deteriorate and it is just a matter of time before they, too, are lost. Gum disease becomes a serious problem, with the difficulty of treatment increasing with the passage of time.
TMJ stands for temporal-mandibular joint. Temporal, as in temple area of skull; mandibular as in mandible, or lower jaw; joint as in it's where the head and jaw meet. Problems in this joint may be caused by a misalignment of the teeth, trauma, or excess muscle tension. Aside from the two bones that meet there, cartilage buffers them and five muscles are involved in the area. If something goes wrong a good deal of trouble can result.
Problems in this area can cause:
- Trouble/soreness in opening and closing the mouth
- Clicking or popping of the jaw
- Pain in the jaw muscles
- Soreness in the area, sometimes extending to the face
Dental treatments for the condition can include replacing missing teeth, moving teeth, adjusting the bite, filling gaps between teeth, etc. There is no one solution that is right for all cases. Sometimes a plastic mouthpiece (biteplane) is fabricated to prevent the clenching or grinding that is contributing to the problem. If untreated and taken to extremes, permanent damage may occur to the joint.
17 N Harding Road Columbus, OH 43209