Professional dental cleanings (dental prophylaxis) are performed in office by our Registered Dental Hygienist. Your cleaning appointment will include a dental exam and the following:
Removal of tartar (calculus): Tooth tartar is hardened plaque that has been left on the tooth for an extended time and is now attached to the tooth surface. Tartar forms above and below the gum line and can only be removed with special dental instruments.
Removal of plaque: Plaque is a sticky, almost invisible film that forms on your teeth. It is a growing colony of living bacteria, food debris, and saliva. The bacteria produces toxins that inflame the gums. This inflammation is the start of periodontal disease.
Teeth polishing: Remove stain and plaque that is not otherwise removed during brushing and scaling.
During your preventative dentistry consultation, Dr. Milito and her assistant will carefully examine the tooth or teeth to be treated and may order x-rays or other scans if a deeper look is necessary. Throughout this time, we’ll will explain their findings as well as help to formulate a treatment plan so that you can have the smile you’ve always wanted.
Every tooth in your mouth has a blood and neurovascular (nerve) supply that provides nutrients and sensation to your teeth. If dental decay goes untreated, it will find its way to the nerve chamber of a tooth. This will usually present with pain to cold, hot, and pain when you bite. These are usually signs that you may need root canal therapy.
At Quentin Smile Dental, we focus on preventative means, however once root canal therapy is indicated, we conduct it with safe and pain-free measures.
What is a Root Canal? This is a common misnomer, since every tooth has a root canal (some even have more than one). The proper name is “root canal therapy” (RCT).
Root Canal Therapy simply involves accessing the tooth’s nerve chamber while the patient is completely anesthetized. Next the nerve tissue is removed from the tooth to prevent any future occurrences of pain or sensitivity. The root canal is cleaned and shaped and cemented in with a biocompatible material called GuttaPercha. This material prevents any bacteria from entering the tooth.
After root canal therapy is completed, the tooth becomes structurally weakened and has a higher chance of fracture. Research and practice have show that crowning a tooth after RCT dramatically increased long term tooth survival. A post is needed to rebuild tooth structure in order to retain your crown.
Extractions are always our last resort at Quentin Smile Dental. When a tooth is simply unrestorable and has poor long-term prognosis an extraction is recommended.
Extractions are achieved under ample amount of anesthesia. Once a tooth is extracted there are multiple options given to replace it. The first option is to always do nothing. That is always an option. However, if nothing is done, teeth will tend to drift into contact and this may cause malocclusion (improper bite) which may eventually lead to gum recession, foot pocketing, and decay.
The second options is to place an immediate implant or plan for a bridge. Come for a consultation to discuss pros and cons of each in your particular case.
The third option after extraction if you are not a candidate for immediate implant placement is to place a bone graft. This is usually done to prepare the site for an implant. A bone graft is either allograft (processed cadaver bone) or xenograft (usually bovine bone). These grafts act as scaffolds for existing bone to grow into. At Quentin Smile Dental we use top of the industry bone grafting materials. This procedure of bone grafting is known as “socket preservation”. Without grafting, bone will resorb to the point where an implant cannot be placed. A bone graft provides ample room for the future implant to be placed. It generally takes up to 3-4 months to fully heal prior to implant placement.