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From a routine exam and cleaning to full-mouth rehabilitation, our practice is equipped to handle all of your dental needs. To help you understand more about our office, we have included brief descriptions of some of our most common services.
Your first visit at our office is very important in establishing your oral health baseline. We will perform a complete oral examination which includes an oral cancer screening, periodontal evaluation, an analysis of your occlusion (bite) and a thorough examination of your teeth, their supporting structures and of the oral anatomy.
Both natural teeth and teeth with restorations survive best in an oral environment that is clean and where proper oral hygiene is maintained. Our dental hygiene program is designed to help prevent new cavities, preserve teeth that have been restored and manage periodontal disease. At the initial visit with our hygienist, oral hygiene instructions are reviewed and are reinforced at subsequent recall visits.
If a tooth is extracted or missing for some other reason, it is now possible to replace it using dental implants. An implant is a new tooth made of metal and porcelain that looks just like your natural tooth. It's composed of two main parts: One part is the titanium implant body that takes the place of the missing root, and the second part is the tooth-colored crown that is cemented on top of the implant. In addition to tooth replacement, implants may be used to anchor dentures, especially lower dentures that tend to shift when you talk or chew. For patients with removable partial dentures, implants can replace missing teeth so that you have a more natural-looking smile.
Traditional dental restoratives, or fillings, include gold, amalgam, porcelain, and composite. With the advent of the newest technologies in dental science, today's state-of-the-art restorative materials include ceramic and the latest composite materials. These materials are not only strong and durable, but restore the look of natural teeth and are very aesthetically pleasing.
The terms dental crowns and caps are synonymous. Crowns are typically used to restore a tooth's function and appearance following a restorative procedure such as a root canal. When decay in a tooth has become so advanced that large portions of the tooth must be removed, crowns are often used to restore the tooth. Crowns are also used to attach bridges, cover implants, or to prevent a cracked tooth from becoming worse. Crowns also serve an aesthetic use, and are applied when a discolored or stained tooth needs to be restored to its natural appearance. Crowns are fabricated in a laboratory and are made either of porcelain baked onto a metal substrate, all-porcelain, or many of the new ceramic materials that have been developed.
A bridge may be used to replace missing teeth, help maintain the shape of your face, and alleviate stress on your bite. A bridge replaces missing teeth with artificial teeth, looks great, and literally bridges the gap where one or more teeth may have been. Your bridge can be made from gold, alloys, porcelain, or a combination of these materials and is bonded onto surrounding teeth for support. There are two basic types of bridges. A fixed bridge which remains in your mouth at all times and is supported by your natural teeth. Removable bridges (partials and full dentures) are removed from the mouth several times a day for cleaning and rest on the gum where the missing teeth are being replaced.
We take pride in creating and maintaining beautiful and healthy smiles for our younger patients in an environment that is lighthearted and fun. We focus on establishing oral health habits that last a lifetime, with education and prevention as our primary tools.
Our in-office state-of-the-art bleaching system will make your teeth whiter and brighter. You may also use our take home bleaching system to achieve a brighter and whiter smile in a matter of days.
Gaps, chips, stains, or misshapen teeth can now be treated with wonderful results and very conservatively using porcelain veneers. Veneers are natural in appearance, and are a perfect alternative for patients wanting to make minor adjustments to the look and feel of their smile. Veneers are thin, custom-made shells made from tooth-colored materials (such as porcelain) designed to cover the front side of your teeth.
Root canal therapy is needed when the nerve of a tooth is affected by decay or infection. This simple treatment can save your natural teeth and prevent the need of dental implants or bridges. Symptoms of the infection are generally acute dental pain or sensitivity to hot, cold or percussion. If you experience any of these symptoms, your dentist will most likely recommend root canal therapy to eliminate the diseased pulp. This injured pulp is removed and the root canal system is thoroughly cleaned and sealed. This therapy usually involves local anesthesia and may be completed in one or more visits depending on the treatment required. Success for this type of treatment occurs in about 90% of cases.
Sometimes it is necessary to extract a tooth. This can happen for a variety of reasons. Extractions are commonly performed in cases where a deciduous “baby” tooth is reluctant to fall out, a severely broken down and non-restorable tooth is present, or “wisdom tooth” is poorly positioned and unable to fully erupt into place.
To reduce any anxiety and insure patient comfort whenever a tooth extraction is necessary, the procedure, the post surgical instructions, as well as any restorative follow-up care will be carefully and completely explained.
If you grind your teeth while you sleep, a bite guard will reduce symptoms of TMJ problems. We custom make mouth guards in both soft and hard materials.
We treat patients at Hill Country Memorial Hospital under General Anesthesia. We are the only dentists in Fredericksburg on staff at HCMH (Hill Country Memorial Hospital).