A filling is typically indicated due to the presence of a cavity or fractured tooth structure. Its purpose is to replace the missing space after tooth structure is removed for function and to provide strength and limit sensitivity.
There are two main categories of fillings:
- Composite (white)
- Less tooth structure removal required
- Little tolerance to moisture during placement
- More expensive
- Amalgam (silver)
- More strength
- Less expensive
- Not as sensitive to moisture during placement
- Anti-cavity effect for those with high cavity risk
The safety of silver fillings is endorsed by the ADA, FDA, EPA, and CDC. For more information, visit the ADA’s website
Crowns & Bridges-Porcelain, Porcelain Fused to Metal, Full Gold
A crown is a cap that is put over a tooth for added strength or protection (similar to a helmet while bike riding). A crown is typically indicated due to tooth fracture, large decay, severe wear, or root canal treatment.
During crown treatment, some tooth structure is removed to make room for the crown material. An impression is then made for our dental lab technicians to fabricate a custom-made crown. While the lab is making your crown, we send you home with a temporary crown to protect the tooth. When the crown is completed, we have you back in the office to try it in and make sure you like how it looks and feels.
A bridge is a multi-unit crown, which is indicated when replacing a missing tooth or multiple teeth. Typically, the teeth on either side of the space are prepared for crowns and our dental lab connects fake teeth in between those two crowns to bridge the gap.
The main categories of crown materials include:
- Most esthetic (best looking)
- Tooth-colored with metal substructure for strength
- Ideal for clenchers/grinders who value esthetics
- Less tooth structure removal required
- Not tooth-colored
Implants have become the gold standard for tooth replacement, as the success rates are extremely high. An implant is a titanium screw that is placed in the upper or lower jaw bone, which later supports a custom-made crown. The implant crown looks and functions much like your original tooth.
The implant process starts at our office, where we do a preliminary examination to rule out any contraindications to implant treatment due to medical history or anatomy. The next step is performed by an oral surgeon or periodontist, where a titanium implant screw is placed into the bone in the area where the tooth or teeth are missing (sometimes the bone requires some prepping prior to implant placement). After a time of healing and check-ups by the specialist, you will return to our office for an impression to send to our dental lab to have the permanent implant crown made. When the crown is ready, we attach a custom piece to the implant that has integrated into the bone and cement the crown on top. Yes, it is a process, but the results are outstanding.
For those who are interested in brightening their smile, we offer custom bleach trays and professional-strength whitening gel for patients to take home and use at their leisure.
Many people suffer from tooth clenching and grinding, which often leads to jaw joint pain and headaches that can be detrimental to daily life. Our office is very familiar with this issue and we offer appliances called occlusal guards, or “night guards” which can address these issues.
An occlusal guard is basically a durable, clear retainer that snaps onto the top teeth and is typically worn at night. The appliance allows even distribution of forces throughout the teeth and protects the teeth from loosing enamel. The appliance can also help position the jaw in a more natural position to help relieve pain.
Athletic Mouth Guards
If you or your child plays a contact sport, it is of utmost importance to wear an athletic mouth guard. Mouth guards protect the teeth from fracture and help absorb forces that can be dangerous to the jaw joint during impact.
Oral Cancer Screening
At every exam, we perform a complimentary oral cancer screening. It is important to check for inflamed lymph nodes in the neck area, as well as the soft tissues of the oral cavity for lumps or bumps that are out of the ordinary. The tongue, as well as salivary glands, are common areas where cancers can occur, but are not easily seen without the help of a dentist or dental hygienist.
Topical Fluoride Treatment
Fluoride treatment helps strengthen teeth and prevent cavities. We offer topical fluoride treatment for both children and adults. For more information about the uses and safety of fluoride, visit the ADA’s website.
Sealants are typically placed on children as their first and second molar erupt (around ages 6 and 12). Their purpose is to fill in deep grooves of the teeth with a white resin material to help prevent cavities on the biting surfaces of the teeth. For more information about sealants, visit the ADA’s website.
Most people who visit their dental office are concerned about pain and anxiety management. We are very mindful of this and try to make your visit as comfortable and pain-free as possible.
At our office, the doctors are licensed to administer and/or prescribe:
- Local anesthetic
- Nitrous Oxide
- Oral sedatives
X-rays are used as a diagnostic tool to locate disease of the oral cavity (cavities, infection, abnormalities, etc). Our office uses digital technology to minimize radiation exposure as much as possible. A full mouth set of x-rays is about equivalent to the radiation one is exposed to while flying in an airplane from PDX to LAX.
According to the Oregon Board of Dentistry, “The Standard of Care in Oregon requires that current radiographs are available prior to providing treatment to a patient.”
- Dental Prophylaxis
A dental prophylaxis is a regular tooth cleaning that is performed to prevent disease. This type of cleaning is indicated when the gums and bone around the teeth are considered healthy or are in the reversible, initial stages of gum disease. A dental prophylaxis is typically performed every six months.
- Full Mouth Debridement
A full mouth debridement is a type of cleaning that involves the general disinfection of the teeth and gums. This disinfection is performed when there is evidence of initial stages of gum disease, called gingivitis, and presence of heavy bacterial plaque and/or tartar build-up. This sometimes requires numbing for the patient’s comfort. The purpose of a full mouth debridement is to reverse gingivitis and prevent progression to bone loss and periodontal disease. This type of cleaning is typically followed up with a regular tooth cleaning, or dental prophylaxis. For more information about gum disease, click here.
- Scaling and Root Planing
Scaling and root planing is a deep type of cleaning that is indicated when there is heavy tartar build-up and active bacterial infection of the gum and bone surrounding the teeth, called periodontal disease. Periodontal disease is typically diagnosed based on the measurements of deeper gum pockets around the teeth, x-rays confirming bone loss, and presence of bleeding. This type of cleaning usually requires numbing of the gums and the use of special instruments to manually remove infection and tartar.This type of cleaning requires a 4-6 week follow-up appointment to confirm whether the disease is still active or has gone into remission. If the initial treatment was successful, the patient will be seen in 3, 4, or 6 month intervals for maintenance to keep the disease in remission. If unsuccessful, a referral to a periodontist, or gum and bone specialist, may be necessary.For more information about periodontal disease, click here.
- Periodontal Maintenance
After being diagnosed with periodontal disease and having an initial Scaling and Root Planing procedure, individuals are placed on a periodontal maintenance cleaning schedule to help keep the disease in remission. Periodontal maintenance is typically performed in 3, 4, or 6 month intervals based on the individual’s needs.For more information about periodontal disease, click here.