Your first exam is very important. We will take note of all existing work in your mouth. During the exam we examine your teeth for decay, wear, malocclusion and overall health. The doctor will check your soft tissue health and screen for oral cancer. He will also check to ensure your bite is in equilibrium with your posture and spine. He will then diagnose any dental concerns with the aid of digital x-rays, caries detecting laser, and digital photography. Finally, the doctor will work with you to create a customized treatment plan that will bring you to optimal dental health.
Digital x-rays give us a clear image of the inside of your teeth as well as your bone. This aids in the detection of any problems with your teeth or surrounding bone as well as defining the relationship between your teeth. Digital x-rays use a very low dose of radiation, comparable to the amount you would receive from being outdoors.
The hygienist is a specialist in oral hygiene and periodontal treatment. She will evaluate your overall hygiene health, in coordination with the dentist, and recommend treatment to help overcome or avoid gum disease. Once you have been evaluated at your initial appointment, she will give you specific home care as well as setting up a schedule that works with you to keep your tissue in the best health possible.
Composite filling material is used to fill areas of decay in your teeth. The dentist first removes the decay and replaces it with a white filling material. This material is fairly durable but can break down over time. A more permanent solution to cavity repair is a porcelain onlay. The doctor prepares the tooth in much the same way, takes an impression of the area and sends it off to a lab. A perfect restoration is then created and inserted.
A root canal is used to treat infection that occurs in the nerve of your tooth. This can be due to decay or injury. The infected nerve is removed under local anaesthetic and replace with a rubbery substance. Once a root canal has been performed, the tooth loses its blood supply and therefore can become brittle and break. The safest option is the place a permanent crown on the tooth after the root canal has been completed.
Extractions can be necessary for various reasons. An orthodontist may recommend primary or permanent extractions to ease crowding. Wisdom teeth may need to be extracted as our jaws have become smaller through evolution making it difficult to find room for that extra tooth. If your wisdom teeth do erupt it is often difficult to keep them clean, given their location, and this can lead to periodontal problems. We recommend looking at all the alternatives before extracting a tooth for any other reason. All our teeth have an important job to do and losing any can lead to other problems.
A crown is an aesthetically and functional way to protect a compromised tooth. The materials used are the strongest protection against breakage or further damage. The lab that produces the crown uses the highest quality material and is very involved in finding exactly the right shade to complement your existing teeth. A bridge is a series of 3 or more crowns connected to each other. A bridge fills a space where a tooth has been lost. This brings stability and full function back to the area.
Veneers are essentially used in smile design. They can improve the look of your smile by straightening, masking imperfections, lengthening your teeth, contouring your arch. Veneers require minimal reduction and can greatly improve the aesthetics of your smile.
We offer smile whitening consultations. We work with you to decide on a specific shade and then provide you with a kit to bring home. Your whitening is monitored on a regular basis until the desired shade has been achieved.
The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is the name of the joint located on either side of your head, just in front of your ears. These joints connect your mandible (jawbone) to your temporal bone (skull). Due to its wide variety of movements, the TMJ is considered one of the most complex joints in the body. This joint, in combination with other muscles and ligaments, lets you chew, swallow, speak and yawn. When you have a problem with the muscle, bone or other tissue in the area in and around the TMJ, you may have a Temporomandibular joint disorder, also called TMD.
Signs or symptoms of TMDs include pain and tenderness in or around the ear, the jaw joint, or the muscles of the jaw, face or temples. Other symptoms are problems opening or closing your mouth, and various noises when you chew, yawn or open your mouth. TMDs may be linked with neck pain and headaches.
In most cases, TMDs are caused by a combination of factors like jaw injuries, poor posture, genetic predisposition, or joint disease. Stress is also a possible factor. However, it is not clear if stress causes TMDs or is a result of them.
During your initial exam, one of the areas that the doctor evaluates is your jaw mobility and any evidence of grinding or clenching your teeth. Temporomandibular disorders can be manifested by headaches, jaw pain and tooth wear. He will ask you detailed questions about your concerns and any evidence that your joint is being stressed. A night guard provides relief and stability to your joint while you sleep. They are quite comfortable and can provide relief for many symptoms that you had not even attributed to your dental well being.
Sleep apnea refers to a sleep disorder that is characterized by abnormal pauses during breathing or instances of shallow breathing while asleep. These pauses are referred to as “apnea” and the shallow breathing occurrences are referred to as “hypopnoea”. Sleep apnea is most often diagnosed via an overnight sleep test done in your own home. If you answer “yes” to 2 or more of the following questions, you may be at risk for obstructive sleep apnea:
Do you snore loudly?
Do you often feel tired during the day?
Has anyone observed you stop breathing or gasping during your sleep?
Do you have high blood pressure?
Prolonged sleep apnea can lead to serious health problems as it puts undue stress on your heart and reduces oxygenation to vital organs. This can provoke a heart attack, stroke and is associated with a number of medical conditions. Talk to us-we can help put you back on the road to good health!