Cosmetic Dentist Blog
Posts for: March, 2016
Restoring chipped, stained or decayed teeth with dental porcelain is a tried and true method that’s been used for decades. In recent years, though, restorations made with composite resin have become a popular alternative.
Made of a plastic-based matrix with added glass filler, composite resin can be molded and bonded to teeth to replace missing structure with color to match. While they can’t be used for every problem situation, they’re an efficient and economical way to transform your smile.
Here are 4 advantages for using composite resin to restore moderately defective teeth.
They require very little tooth preparation. Crowns, veneers and other porcelain restorations require removing some healthy tooth structure to accommodate them. With the development of stronger bonding materials, composite resins can restore even many large defects in teeth caused by decay or trauma with little structural removal and still remain durable.
Most composite resin restorations are “single-visit” procedures. Unlike porcelain restorations, applying composite resin doesn’t require a dental lab, a process that can take multiple visits. In most cases, a skilled dentist can apply them during a single visit.
They have excellent color matching capabilities. We usually think of teeth as one single shade of white — actually, a single tooth can have varying gradations of color from the root to the tip. As mentioned before, composite resins can be prepared to match those color shades precisely, so your restored teeth look natural and blend well with your other teeth.
Composite resins can be an effective temporary fix for young injured teeth. Because children’s teeth are still developing, permanent restorations for traumatized teeth aren’t usually advisable until they’ve fully matured. Composite resin can be used to restore a young tooth’s form and function until it’s ready for a permanent solution.
If you would like more information on restoring teeth with composite resin, 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 “Artistic Repair of Front Teeth with Composite Resin.”
Did you see the move Cast Away starring Tom Hanks? If so, you probably remember the scene where Hanks, stranded on a remote island, knocks out his own abscessed tooth — with an ice skate, no less — to stop the pain. Recently, Dear Doctor TV interviewed Gary Archer, the dental technician who created that special effect and many others.
“They wanted to have an abscess above the tooth with all sorts of gunk and pus and stuff coming out of it,” Archer explained. “I met with Tom and I took impressions [of his mouth] and we came up with this wonderful little piece. It just slipped over his own natural teeth.” The actor could flick it out with his lower tooth when the time was right during the scene. It ended up looking so real that, as Archer said, “it was not for the easily squeamish!”
That’s for sure. But neither is a real abscess, which is an infection that becomes sealed off beneath the gum line. An abscess may result from a trapped piece of food, uncontrolled periodontal (gum) disease, or even an infection deep inside a tooth that has spread to adjacent periodontal tissues. In any case, the condition can cause intense pain due to the pressure that builds up in the pus-filled sac. Prompt treatment is required to relieve the pain, keep the infection from spreading to other areas of the face (or even elsewhere in the body), and prevent tooth loss.
Treatment involves draining the abscess, which usually stops the pain immediately, and then controlling the infection and removing its cause. This may require antibiotics and any of several in-office dental procedures, including gum surgery, a root canal, or a tooth extraction. But if you do have a tooth that can’t be saved, we promise we won’t remove it with an ice skate!
The best way to prevent an abscess from forming in the first place is to practice conscientious oral hygiene. By brushing your teeth twice each day for two minutes, and flossing at least once a day, you will go a long way towards keeping harmful oral bacteria from thriving in your mouth.
If you have any questions about gum disease or abscesses, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can learn more by reading the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Periodontal (Gum) Abscesses” and “Confusing Tooth Pain.”
You've likely heard of Invisalign, the revolutionary way to straighten teeth using nearly-invisible plastic trays, called aligners. What you may not know is the science behind Invisalign's technology. Dr. Warren Gase, your dentist in Cincinnati, OH, has provided some information for his patients about how Invisalign helps give them a beautifully even smile, comfortably and discreetly.
What is involved in the Invisalign process?
Using digital images of your teeth from your Cincinnati dentist, a certified laboratory will create your series of Invisalign trays out of a clear, flexible plastic material. Many people liken them to teeth-whitening trays. Once these aligners are finished being manufactured, you will return to Dr. Gase's office for fitting and further instructions. On average, most patients wear each aligner for about two weeks before their teeth have moved into position for the next aligner in the series. Patients who follow the recommended instructions of wearing the trays 20 to 22 hours per day typically have a treatment schedule of about a year.
How does Invisalign move my teeth?
Invisalign works similarly to traditional braces; by placing focused pressure on the teeth, they will gradually shift into their proper alignment. The difference is that traditional braces will need to be tightened periodically to continue the straightening process. The Invisalign trays do not need to be adjusted by your Cincinnati dentist, therefore providing much gentler pressure and less discomfort as the teeth move.
Perhaps one of the most attractive features about Invisalign is the ability you have to remove them during eating, drinking and cleaning your teeth. This allows you to enjoy your favorite foods that might otherwise be restricted during a traditional braces regimen.
If you'd like to learn more about Invisalign from Dr. Warren Gase, your Cincinnati, OH dentist, contact our office to set up a consultation today!