At Dental Associates we are dedicated to treating the whole patient, and as such, your initial appointment will be longer to allow for a comprehensive examination. This will include an oral cancer screening, gum health exam, evaluation of the muscles, joints, and oral structures including existing dental restorations, and a series of digital photos and x-rays. The Doctor will discuss the findings and treatment options with you.
Our Hygiene Department works with patients to provide excellent treatment within the office along with home care instructions to promote optimal oral health between visits. Some patients are seen twice a year for routine cleanings, while others require more frequent visits to maintain their oral health. Some patients may require a more invasive deep cleaning called scaling and root planing. During this procedure you are given anesthetic to allow the hygienist to remove buildup and bacteria from below the gum tissue in areas not cleansable during a routine cleaning.
Some teeth have grooves or pits on them that can accumulate plaque and due to the structure are difficult to clean. Over time these areas can develop cavities. To prevent this, the area has a tooth colored coating placed on it that 'seals' off the groove or pit and allows better cleansability to help keep your teeth healthy.
A filling is placed in a tooth to 'fill the hole' and replaces structure removed due to decay or missing tooth structure. Fillings can be silver amalgam or tooth colored composite.
A crown, or 'cap' is a restoration that covers the whole tooth and may be required when a tooth is broken, has significant decay, or is starting to show fracture lines. They are common following a root canal or if a large existing filling wears out. This is a procedure that requires multiple visits. At the first visit the tooth will be prepared by removing the unsound structure, and a temporary crown will be placed. At the second visit the temporary will be removed and a gold, porcelain, or porcelain and metal restoration will be cemented on the tooth.
A root canal is required if the nerve of the tooth is compromised, by decay, fracture or trauma. Once the nerve, or pulp, of a tooth is infected, it must be treated, ideally before infection extends to bone causing a dental abscess. Symptoms can include sensitivity to temperature or sweets, pain on biting, aching, swelling, or a bad taste in the mouth. Some teeth can have no symptoms and a problem is revealed during a routine exam.
Root canal therapy removes the infected pulp tissue, disinfects the canal and fills the now empty space with restorative material. Treatment requires multiple visits to ensure resolution of infection and symptoms.
Replacing missing teeth
It is important to replace missing teeth to maintain the position and health of those remaining. When teeth begin to shift to fill the space, the bite can change, and lead to changes in your jaw muscles and joint. The bone and gum health of the remaining teeth can deteriorate and cause further tooth loss.
There are multiple treatment options to replace missing teeth.
This option replaces a missing tooth by placing crowns on the teeth adjacent to the space and 'bridging' the space with a fake tooth. As with a crown, this is a procedure that requires multiple visits. At the first visit the teeth will be prepared and a temporary bridge will be placed. At the second visit the temporary will be removed and a gold, porcelain, or porcelain and metal restoration will be cemented in the mouth.
This option replaces a missing tooth by surgically placing a titanium shaft into the bone and allowing it to heal. Once healed, a crown is cemented on the implant, without treating adjacent teeth. At Dental Associates we will refer you to a specialist for the surgical placement, and will place the final restoration once the bone has healed.
This option is removable and replaces missing teeth from one to a whole mouth. Impressions are taken to fabricate appliances specific to your oral tissues. There is a period after placement during which the dentures may require additional visits to the office for adjustments to enhance the comfort and function.
We offer Opalescence whitening products for your use at home, either as strips or using custom trays we can fabricate in our in house lab.
This treatment involves preparing the tooth by removing a small amount of material from the portion of the tooth visible when talking or smiling. A covering restoration is then bonded on the tooth for a very esthetic result.
This treatment allows patients to straighten their teeth using a series of custom made clear aligners. Unlike traditional braces, there are no wires or brackets, and the aligners are removable during eating and brushing.
Poor tooth alignment, sleep disordered breathing, trauma or muscle tension can cause problems in the jaw joint. Symptoms may include headaches, earaches, clicking or popping of the joint, muscle soreness or difficulty opening. Orally the teeth may show extensive wear or erosion, sensitivity to temperatures or mobility. Treatments vary patient to patient but include adjusting the bite, moving or replacing teeth, and oral appliances used nightly.
Dental emergencies are never convenient. At Dental Associates of Manhattan, we are committed to our patients' well being regardless of the time. If you are a current patient, and have a dental emergency after regular office hours, please call us at (785) 539-7401.