Untreated tooth decay can spread to the nerve, eventually killing the tooth. If we find a cavity, we will clean out the decay and restore the tooth with a white or tooth-colored filling.
White fillings are made from a mixture of quartz and plastic that we blend to match your tooth shade. Recent studies have found tooth-colored fillings are healthier than amalgam (metal) fillings, because white fillings don’t expand and contract with hot and cold temperatures, which causes cracks, breaks, and tooth sensitivity. Metal fillings also contain harmful mercury. Tooth-colored fillings look like your natural teeth, with no dark metal or discoloration. No one will ever know you had a cavity, and you might even forget the cavity was there!
If tooth decay is more advanced, you may not have enough of the tooth left to support a filling. If this is the case, but you don’t need a crown, our dentists at Dental Health Associates can restore your tooth with a porcelain dental inlay or onlay. Inlays and onlays cover more of the tooth’s surface than a filling does, and it will take two visits to complete them.
The difference between the two is how much of the tooth each one covers. An inlay covers the top of your tooth up to the cusps (the rounded edges on the top of your tooth). An onlay is used to cover more of the tooth and extends beyond the cusps. Like white fillings, they look completely natural and no different from your other teeth.
A dental crown, also called a cap, covers an entire tooth and can be the best way to preserve your natural tooth. Crowns protect damaged teeth, add structure to worn teeth, and mask stains or misalignments. If you have had implants placed, crowns are placed on top of the implants. If you’ve lost one or more teeth, crowns are placed on either side of a false tooth to anchor it to the rest of your teeth.
A crown generally takes two visits to complete. First, our dentists will assess your bite. They may take impressions, X-rays, or digital images of your mouth. All of the information is sent to a dental lab, where a custom crown is designed to blend seamlessly with your existing teeth.
If you have multiple missing teeth, the best way to replace them may be with partial or full dentures. A partial denture is used to replace lost teeth when one or more of your natural teeth remain. The replacement teeth are attached to a gum-colored plastic base that is removable.
Because of the advanced technology we have to evaluate your jaws and your bite, we can expertly fit you with partials that fit well and are secure. You’ll be able to eat and chew comfortably and naturally. You can remove your partials at night to clean them.
Full dentures replace all of the teeth on an upper or lower arch. They are removable and must be secured with an over-the-counter denture adhesive. Dental Health Associates will work closely with a denture lab to create a custom denture that fits securely and looks natural.
The key to successful dentures is a superior, close fit. The more secure your dentures are, the better your jaw will get the chewing stimulation it needs to stay strong and maintain its shape. Like partials, dentures are artificial teeth that are fixed onto a gum-colored plastic base. They’re not worn at night, and you take them out to be cleaned.
A root canal is needed when tooth decay infects the root of the tooth. It may be painful and you might just want to have the tooth pulled! But we want to save your natural tooth if at all possible. Root canal surgery will clear the infection by removing pulp that is the inner part of the tooth with the nerve endings and blood vessels.
At many dental offices, you’ll need to see an endodontist if you need root canal surgery. But at Dental Health Associates, our dentists can perform your root canal surgery, as well as place the crown to cover the tooth after we’ve cleared the root canal. Because we have exceptional X-ray technology, including panoramic X-rays, we’re able to diagnose, treat, and restore any tooth needing a root canal treatment.
Your wisdom teeth usually come in during your late teens or early 20s. They can often become impacted, or trapped beneath the gums, and can cause pain, infection, or even damage to the surrounding teeth and bone.
We can perform minor tooth extractions in our office. But if you need a major tooth extraction, such as wisdom teeth or a bony impacted tooth (when the tooth hasn’t pushed through the gum), we will coordinate your treatment with an oral surgeon to remove them.
We fit our patients for crowns, bridges, or dentures using advanced computer technology that is part of the system our labs use. Our Evolution 4 Dentistry design system uses computer-aided technology to help us design crowns and replacement teeth for the most natural fit possible. The dental labs that we send your information to use corresponding technology that actually creates the crowns or teeth, so there’s no gap between our design and the actual manufacture of your tooth.
And it’s fast! The labs use the information from our computer in their computer-aided manufacturing system, almost as if we had a lab right in our office!
Your restorations can be fit, made, and placed much faster than with old-fashioned technology.