Whether you need to check in with a dentist for the first time in years or have specific aesthetic concerns, the staff at Premier Dental Center is ready to address your needs. Our services range from implants and orthodontics, veneers and root canals, to periodontics, bridges, and dentures. We are certified in IV Sedation and other forms of sedation to bring you the most comfortable appointment possible.
Invisalign is essentially an invisible way to straighten your teeth without the use of traditional braces. The Invisalign system employs a series of clear, removable aligners that move your teeth, over time, to give you the smile you always dreamed of.
Invisalign is very versatile, helping to correct a wide range of dental and orthodontic issues such as overcrowded teeth, widely spaced teeth, overbite and underbite.
These situations can contribute to gum disease and wearing of teeth, as well as painful jaw and joint problems.
Composite Inlays and Onlays
Inlays are used when the decay is within the indented top surface (cusp) of a tooth, and an onlay is used when the cavity involves one or more cusps. If the cavity or tooth damage is more severe, it may be necessary to have a crown placed.
Composite inlays and onlays are made of a combination of plastic and zirconia/silica, which is bonded to the tooth. They are tooth-colored in appearance and actually strengthen the structure of the tooth by up to seventy-five percent; and because of the composite materials from which they are made, they can last up to thirty years.
Crowns and Bridges
A dental crown becomes necessary when a tooth has become weakened by decay or fracture. It can also be used for cosmetic purposes. A dental crown is placed by first grinding away the tooth so that it is smaller. A crown or cap is then placed over the tooth and secured. If you are missing one or more teeth, your dentist may suggest the use of a fixed bridge and dental crowns.
Since the gap left by a missing tooth can cause the remaining teeth to shift or move, it is important for your oral health to replace the missing tooth or teeth; and a fixed bridge is one of the solutions for doing so.
A bridge consists of a pontic (artificial tooth) and crowns – which are “caps” that go over the teeth on both sides of the bridge and serve as anchors to stabilize the bridge. Traditional bridges are made from porcelain fused to metal or ceramics.
If you are missing one or more teeth or wear partial or full dentures, dental implants can be the perfect solution. An implant is a titanium screw that is placed in your jaw, where it functions like a tooth root and stimulates the bone and tissue to keep them from disintegrating. An abutment is fastened to the implanted screw and an artificial tooth is attached to the abutment that protrudes from the gum. Once the artificial tooth is placed on the abutment, it looks, feels and functions like a natural tooth.
Dental implants can also be used to secure partial or full dentures; and instead of attaching an artificial tooth to the abutment, the dental plate or partial is fitted with an O-ring that snaps on to the abutment. For a partial denture, as few as one implant may be needed; and for full dentures, it will take four or more implants to securely hold the prosthesis in place. Implant-supported partials or dentures function just like normal teeth, allowing you to bite and chew just as you did with your permanent teeth; but the dentures can still be removed for cleaning.
When you have several teeth missing from different areas of your upper or lower jaw, a partial denture can restore your biting and chewing abilities, bring back a beautiful smile, and retain the shape of your mouth. Partial dentures can be either fixed or removable, and can be designed to use adjoining teeth as support, or be secured by dental implants – which are titanium screws that are permanently placed in your jawbone. A full denture is needed if all of your teeth have been extracted; the prosthesis that replaces your teeth can be conventional removable dentures or implant-supported dentures.
Removable Partial Dentures
If several teeth are missing in either your upper or lower jaw, a removable partial denture that is supported either by adjoining teeth or by an implant can be used to replace the missing teeth. This gives you the ability to chew more naturally, keeps your remaining teeth from moving into the space left by the missing teeth, ensures proper jaw alignment, and supports the structure of your face.
A removable partial denture is either held in place by clasps that hook on to adjoining teeth or by securing to the abutment of a titanium screw that is implanted in your jawbone. Partial dentures are easily removed for brushing and cleaning.
When all of your permanent teeth need to be extracted from either your upper or lower jaw because of decay, periodontal disease or trauma, complete dentures are created in a dental lab to replace your missing teeth. Over time, dentures can loosen because of the loss of gum tissue and jawbone that deteriorate when they no longer have tooth roots to keep them stimulated.
This can result in the use of dental products to keep them adhered to your gums. The other option is to have your dentures secured with implants that are placed in your jawbone and, through a process called Osseointegration, take the place of a tooth root. In either case, your dentures are easily removable for cleaning.
General Checkups & Cleanings
It is highly recommended that patients visit the dentist at least twice a year. This is for routine check-ups and cleanings and to allow your dentist to look for problems you might not be able to see or feel yourself.
Patients with gum disease may require more frequent visits per year, and this includes patients who have a predisposition or tendency to get cavities or plaque buildup.
When you come for your routine visit, you will receive a cleaning, tooth polishing, prevention and care instructions. Based on your examination, any needed x-rays and treatment recommendations will be given.
These regular checkups prevent any problems from becoming a larger issue down the line. Your doctor can also detect the beginnings of tooth decay and provide a treatment plan to resolve it before it is too late, or harder to deal with.
Remember that certain conditions, such as stress or even illness, can affect the health of your mouth and your overall well-being. Talk to your doctor; it might be recommended that you have more than two visits a year, due to your particular dental state of health, and see what works best for you.
The American Association of Orthodontists recommends an initial orthodontic evaluation at the first sign of orthodontic problems, or no later than seven years of age.
At this young age, orthodontic treatment may not be vital; but close examination can determine the best time to begin orthodontic treatment.
It is never too late to have a complimentary consultation.
Reasons for a Check-Up
It isn’t always easy for parents to determine if their child needs an orthodontic solution. There are however, a few signs or habits that may indicate a need for a check-up, no matter the age:
- Losing baby teeth too soon or too late
- Difficulty when biting or chewing
- Breathing through the mouth
- Sucking on one’s finger
- Sucking on one’s thumb
- Jaws that shift or make noises
- Misplaced, crowded or blocked out teeth
- Teeth that do not meet or meet abnormally
- Jaw and teeth out of proportion to the rest of the face
- Biting of the roof of the mouth or the cheeks
If you are concerned that your child or teen may have any of the above symptoms, contact us today to schedule a consultation with our Orthodontists on staff.
Periodontal Disease (or gum disease) is a serious infection in your gums that is mainly caused by bacterial plaque constantly forming on your teeth. When plaque isn’t removed by brushing, flossing and regular dental cleanings, it can turn to tartar—a hard substance that can be removed only by a dentist. When left in your mouth, plaque and tartar can cause inflammation of your gums, which can develop into infections below the gum line and cause the gum to separate from your teeth, creating pockets that become infected and can even fill with pus.
As the pockets deepen and the disease becomes more pronounced, bone and gum tissue are destroyed. This can ultimately result in tooth loss. Periodontal disease is stealthy, usually giving few, if any, signs of its existence. Regular dental checkups can detect periodontal disease at even its earliest stages. Since periodontal disease is created by plaque and tartar buildup on your gums, good dental hygiene is a must in preventing gum disease.
Along with good daily oral hygiene habits, regular visits to your dentist for checkups and professional cleanings (involving scaling and root planing that will remove plaque or tartar buildup) will help keep your gums healthy and free of periodontal disease and infections.
Scaling and Root Planing
Even with good daily oral hygiene, some plaque still remains in your mouth. Over time it can harden and become tartar (also known as calculus), which if left in your mouth, causes periodontal disease. Tartar can be removed only by a dentist or dental hygienist with a process called “scaling”, in which either ultrasound vibrations or a manual tool called a scaler are used to remove tartar from the portion of your tooth that is below the gum line.
Since plaque and calculus love to grab onto rough surfaces of the tooth, once the built-up tartar has been removed from your tooth, the rough or irregular surfaces are smoothed away with a process called “root planing”. This process is used to prevent periodontal disease, to reverse any early signs of gum disease, and to prevent any existing periodontal disease from spreading.
Sedation dentistry provides a relaxing and anxiety-free experience for some people during dental procedures. It helps to establish a relaxed and calm state through the use of sedatives. Sedation dentistry helps people who are afraid of the dentist or those who need many dental procedures done, but don’t have time for multiple appointments. If you think that sedation dentistry could help you, please give us a call. We’re here to help!
Sleep Apnea/Snore Guard
People who suffer from sleep apnea stop breathing for 10-20 seconds, or sometimes even a minute or longer. Then they could find it difficult to breath and have to gasp for air. Sleep apnea temporarily delays breathing during sleep and can occur many times during the night. A common sign of sleep apnea is heavy snoring with pauses between breaths.
There are two major types of sleep apnea – obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and central sleep apnea (CSA). Some people have a combination of both types – called mixed sleep apnea (MSA). A diagnosis from your doctor, often accompanied by a sleep study, is the only way to classify your sleep apnea. It can be mild, moderate or severe, based on the number of times in an hour that your breathing stops (which is the apnea). Most mild obstructive sleep apnea can be treated with mouthpieces like Snore Guard®.
The American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine states that Snore Guard® (a device for reducing the symptoms of snoring and mild obstructive sleep apnea) and many other oral appliances are considered effective by the FDA for treatment of snoring and mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea. Snore Guard® is clinically proven to help eliminate the problem of snoring before it starts. The comfortable design aligns your jaw in a comfortable forward position – keeping your airway open and clear – so you get a good night’s rest. Dentists who are trained in oral appliance and sleep apnea therapy work with sleep physicians in the diagnosis, treatment and ongoing care for sleep related breathing disorders.
Once a patient is diagnosed with sleep apnea or a sleep related breathing disorder, dentists may provide treatment. Dentists assist patients in the selection and fitting of an oral appliance and provide long-term follow-up care.
Your dentist can help you determine if your teeth and gums are healthy and good candidates for teeth whitening, and which whitening process will give you even, natural looking results. If the discoloration or stains on your teeth will not respond well to whitening, your dentist will have other options that will work for you.
If teeth whitening is a good option for you, in-office whitening will give almost immediate results; and teeth whitening trays and gels can even be created by your dentist for you to use at home over the span of three days to two weeks.
If a natural-looking smile is important to you, your dentist can now repair and restore your teeth with tooth-colored fillings, inlays, onlays, crowns and veneers that when placed look just like your teeth.
Also known as dental fillings, tooth colored restorations are a way to help stop tooth decay from causing sufficient damage to warrant a tooth having to be pulled.
Made of a complex composite of plastic and zirconia/silica, tooth-colored restorations bond to your tooth, helping prevent any filling leaks or chances of any cracking or breaking of the tooth.
They also feel, look and function like your natural teeth, and are ninety to ninety-five percent as strong as a healthy tooth; whereas silver fillings are only forty to forty-five percent as strong.
When your decayed tooth needs more than a filling but less than a crown to repair it, your dentist will use either an inlay or an onlay to bring your tooth back to a healthy state.
These wafer-thin shells that are most often made from porcelain or ceramic are bonded to the front surface of a tooth to cover teeth that are discolored, stained, chipped, cracked or even misaligned or have gaps between them. Your dentist makes impressions of your teeth and then a mold of the way your teeth will look once the veneers are placed. The mold is sent to a dental lab where the veneers are created. Once they are returned to your dentist’s office (typically in five to ten business days), your dentist uses a special cement to apply the veneer to your tooth or teeth.
Once the veneer is placed and both you and your dentist are happy with the way it looks, a special light is used to harden the cement and permanently attach the veneer to your tooth.
Veneers are made in a tone and translucency that either matches your teeth or whitens and improves the look of your teeth. Veneers typically last for five to ten years and do not require any special care – just brushing, flossing and regular visits to the dentist.