Dental Tips Blog

Nov
28

Is a Dental Crown Right for Your Smile?

Posted in Crowns

Damaged, decayed, and dull-looking teeth can be updated and reinforced with dental crowns. But a cap isn’t your only option. Before you decide to get a crown, you should know what it can do for your smile and what your other options are.

Why Choose a Dental Crown

Dental caps are great for:

  • Strengthening teeth with little remaining tooth structure
  • Protecting teeth weakened by enamel loss
  • Capping teeth with root canals
  • Covering teeth made sensitive by large fillings
  • Preventing tooth damage from teeth grinding
  • Anchoring a dental bridge
  • Finishing off a dental implant

There may be other situations in which your dentist feels your tooth needs a crown. In general, dental caps bring the benefits of strength, protection, and beauty to a smile.

When You May Want to Pass on a Crown

There are, however, a couple of instances in which a full dental crown isn’t so ideal.

Perhaps one of your front teeth has a small chip in it. You could cap it with an entire crown. But for a more conservative look, you might opt for a cosmetic dental veneer. Front teeth don’t experience as much bite pressure as the back ones, so as long as a tooth is structurally-sound, you may not need a full dental cap.

Something similar is the case when it comes to molars. Back teeth with minimal damage may not need to be completely covered with a cap. Instead, they may qualify for a restoration called an inlay or onlay. This works like a combination crown and filling.

The best way to find out which kind of restoration your tooth needs is to see your local dentist for an examination.

Posted on behalf of:
Manhattan Dental Design
315 W 57
th St Suite 206
New York, NY 10019
(646) 504-4377

Nov
27

Cosmetic Solutions for Small Teeth

Do you have one or more teeth that seem ridiculously tiny?

If so, you may be embarrassed to show off your teeth when you smile or laugh.

Fortunately, there are some great tricks for making your teeth look larger to even out your smile.

Dental Crowns

Crowns provide the most comprehensive coverage for teeth. They’re solid and cover the entire tooth to provide structural support. A crown is ideal if your tooth is small because of a large fracture or a congenital defect.

Dental Bonding

For a minimal approach to enlarging teeth, try dental bonding. To bond a tooth means filling out its profile with a tooth-colored restorative putty. Bonding patches up shallow chips in enamel and can also round out the shape of a narrow-looking tooth.

Dental Veneers

One of the best solutions for making teeth look bigger is to get a dental veneer. A veneer is a wafer of porcelain that fits over the front of a healthy tooth. The porcelain can be shaped larger than the actual tooth, so that when it goes over the front, the entire tooth looks wider or longer than before.

Veneers are permanent yet less-invasive than crowns. They can also provide a more natural finish than dental bonding.

Cosmetic Dentistry Near You

Among these options for increasing tooth size, one is bound to work for your tooth! You may even try more than one to create your dream smile. Your days of close-lipped grins are over!

Posted on behalf of:
Dr. David Kurtzman D.D.S.
611 Campbell Hill St. NW #101
Marietta, GA 30060
(770) 980-6336

Nov
26

Will Dental Bonding Be Enough for Your Chipped Tooth?

Posted in Bonding

If you have a chipped tooth, your dentist may be able to patch on a little tooth-colored filling material in a procedure called dental bonding.

Dental bonding is a popular solution for chipped teeth because it’s:

  • Fast, delivering instant results
  • So conservative that drilling and numbing injections usually aren’t needed
  • Cost-effective

However, dental bonding isn’t the best option in every case. You may have to go with a different procedure depending on how damaged your tooth is.

When to Bond a Tooth

Bonding is usually sufficient for a chip in a front tooth that becomes a cosmetic issue or an annoyance. Not all tooth fractures hurt, but a crack can leave a sharp edge that hurts your lips or tongue.

Your Options When Bonding Isn’t Enough

Even if your dentist feels that your tooth needs more than bonding, you still have other options.

The next step up may be a dental veneer. Veneers are usually made of porcelain and they fit over the entire front of a tooth. Rather than risking a large patch of bonding material that may have to be redone time and again, you can just get a completely smooth finish the first time with a dental veneer.

If the chip in your tooth is rather large, then you’ll need the structural support of a crown. Dental caps cover the whole tooth and help to evenly distribute the pressure from biting. A chipped tooth that’s likely to get worse over time may need a crown rather than bonding.

Is Bonding Right for You?

Find out what restorative option is best for your tooth by scheduling a consultation with your local dentist.

Posted on behalf of:
Elegant Smiles
1955 Cliff Valley Way NE #100
Brookhaven, GA 30329
404-634-4224

Oct
18

3 Ways to Reshape Your Tooth Without a Crown

Posted in Veneers

Living with a misshaped front tooth can significantly impact your confidence. Whether your tooth is chipped or too small, you may be ashamed to show it when you smile or laugh.

Many cosmetic issues with front teeth are fixed with dental crowns. Crowns add strength and beauty in addition to filling out a damaged smile.

But if you’re looking for a more conservative way to reshape your tooth, then you may qualify for one of the following procedures:

Dental Bonding

Bonding is a procedure in which your dentist molds a simple putty-like filling onto your tooth to fill it out. It’s then cured with a light to chemically bond with the enamel. The result is a very subtle repair that makes a big difference.

Dental bonding is a very cost-effective procedure and it gets instant results. It’s best for only a couple of teeth at a time.

Enamel Contouring

It’s possible that your tooth just has a lot of excess enamel making it look misshaped. Your dentist can gently buff away just a tiny bit of the existing structure to make your tooth fits in with its neighbors.

Dental Veneers

Veneers are the perfect solution when you want dramatic results without capping the entire tooth. Porcelain dental veneers are essentially a facade – they just cover the front of a tooth to make it look different. But the don’t provide the strength or structural support that a crown does.

You may qualify for a dental veneer if your dentist determines that your tooth doesn’t need complete coverage with a crown.

Looking for a way to change your tooth’s shape without a crown? To find out whether bonding, enamel contouring, or a veneer is right for you, schedule a consultation with your local dentist.

Posted on behalf of:
Greencastle Dental
195 Greencastle Road
Tyrone, GA 30290
(770) 486-5585

Sep
17

Will Braces Cause White Spots on Your Teeth?

Posted in Veneers

If you’re due to get braces in the near future, you’re likely afraid of getting some of those dreaded “white spots” or circles on your teeth, as well.

Here’s what you need to know about what causes them, and how to prevent it from happening.

What Are White Spots?

Tooth enamel that loses minerals is considered decalcified. When this happens, the enamel takes on a bright white, chalky appearance.

Decalcification can happen when teeth are exposed to too much fluoride during development. It also occurs as a result of long-term exposure to dental plaque.

Braces can cause enamel decalcification when plaque is allowed to accumulate in places that are hard to reach with a toothbrush or floss. The acids in this biofilm zap minerals out of the enamel, and you’re left with white spots around areas where the brackets and wires used to be.

Decalcified spots on enamel tend to be weaker than other areas on the tooth; they need to be well cared for to avoid developing cavities.

How to Avoid White Spots

Thankfully, white spots are not an inevitable part of getting braces. As long as you maintain a strict oral hygiene routine, you can keep your enamel healthy during orthodontic treatment.

Your daily routine may include:

  • Brushing after every meal, not just twice a day
  • Flossing every day
  • Using a fluoride and/or antiplaque rinse
  • A water flosser or powered toothbrush for extra clean

Minimizing White Spots

Tooth-colored fillings and porcelain veneers are great ways to restore your smile after braces if you have a lot of white spots. A little teeth bleaching may also help even out tooth color. Enamel remineralizing toothpastes can restore weakened areas as well.

Talk with your dentist for more ideas on preventing and treating white spots after orthodontics.

Posted on behalf of:
Soft Touch Dentistry
1214 Paragon Dr
O’Fallon, IL 62269
(618) 622-5050

Sep
9

Are Dental Veneers Permanent?

Posted in Veneers

Dental veneers have been getting people perfect smiles for decades.

You’re interested in what veneers have to offer, but you want to know how long they’ll last. Is the investment worth it?

Veneers Permanently Alter Teeth

To place a veneer, the dentist first has to remove a thin layer of enamel from the front of your upper tooth. This ensures that the veneer fits seamlessly with the rest of your tooth and doesn’t make your smile feel bulky.

But losing even that thin layer of enamel isn’t the best thing for your teeth. They can’t be left with absolutely nothing protecting them.

This means that once you get your teeth prepared for traditional porcelain veneers, there’s no going back – you’ll always have to wear veneers for the rest of your life.

What about the veneers themselves?

As Long As You Want

Veneers, like any other dental restoration, are susceptible to wear and tear over time.

The better you take care of your dental veneers, the longer they will last you.

You must carefully brush and floss around the teeth that have veneers. Otherwise, it’s possible to develop some decay at the margin where the porcelain meets your enamel.

You also have to be careful that you don’t accidentally chip or loosen a veneer by chewing on hard objects.

To make veneers last, you may have to kick a few habits:

  • Nail biting
  • Ice chewing
  • Teeth grinding

Investing in a mouthguard for sports or to prevent bruxism/clenching at night is another great way to protect your veneers.

If you damage your veneers, they will have to be replaced. They are not permanent in that sense.

Learn more about classic veneers and less permanent alternatives. Contact your local dentist.

Posted on behalf of:
Elegant Smiles
1955 Cliff Valley Way NE #100
Brookhaven, GA 30329
404-634-4224

Dec
26

5 Reasons Your Teeth Are Turning Gray

Everyone wants a dazzlingly white smile. Sometimes, coffee or cigarette smoking is to blame for dark stains on teeth. But those are usually easy to treat with professional bleaching.

Gray teeth, on the other hand, are virtually impossible to bleach. This is because the stain usually comes from inside the tooth, as opposed to being caused by outside forces.

  1. Tetracycline Staining

Taking a certain class of antibiotic during tooth formation is known to cause staining. It can even happen to an unborn baby if the mom takes the medication during pregnancy. When the child’s teeth come in, they can show up gray.

  1. Trauma

A hard knock to a tooth can cause the inner tissues to die. As they decompose, the tooth is left an eerie gray color.

  1. Fluorosis

Extreme cases of heavy fluoride exposure during tooth development can cause relatively harmless but unsightly dark staining in permanent teeth.

  1. Metal Filling Staining

Do you have any old silver amalgam fillings? These can leach out into tooth enamel over time, discoloring it.

  1. Nerve Damage

Whether due to trauma or decay, the nerve inside a tooth can become injured and infected. When this happens, it’s time for a root canal to remove the nerve and save your tooth.

If you have a dark tooth that bothers you, it’s definitely time to see a dentist. Especially if the cause is a damaged nerve that can trigger an infection. Contact your family dental office to plan a visit. Your dentist will be happy to help you discover options for treating gray teeth such as teeth bleaching, dental crowns or dental veneers.

Posted on behalf of:
Memorial Park Dental Spa
6010 Washington Ave Suite D
Houston, TX 77007
(713) 336-8478

Oct
8

Not Ready to Commit to Veneers? Try Lumineers

Posted in Veneers

Like many other people, you may find yourself hiding your teeth behind your a closed-lipped smile.

Are you ashamed of your teeth? Have you ever wished you could just cover them up?

With the help of dental veneers, you can do just that. Veneers are commonly made of porcelain and they slip right over your front teeth to create a new look.

But, getting veneers is quite the commitment. Your tooth enamel has to be adjusted and prepared so it can fit a new porcelain “glove” without making your teeth feel bulky. If your veneers pop off or get damaged, you’ll have to get them replaced.

Fortunately, Lumineers® is a brand of no-prep veneers that typically eliminates the need for:

  • Numbing shots
  • Enamel prepping and reshaping
  • Temporary veneers

Your Certified Lumineers® Dentist will simply take a mold of your teeth as they are and send it off to a Lumineers® lab. You’ll get back a complete set of all the veneers you need at the same time. After using just a dab of bonding agent on your teeth, your dentist will place your finished restorations. That’s it!

Lumineers® can get away with such little work because they are ultra-thin. They’re so lightweight that you’ll hardly notice them on your teeth. When your dentist places your Lumineers®, they will be carefully adjusted so that they can’t easily chip off.

The best part about Lumineers®? Even though they’ll give you a killer smile in an instant, you can have them removed anytime you wish to go back to your original smile without needing to replace them with something else.

To find out whether Lumineers® are right for you, schedule a smile consultation with your dentist.

Posted on behalf of:
Park Slope Dental Arts
506 3rd St
Brooklyn, NY 11215
(718) 962-0300

Sep
22

Which Should You Get, a Cap or Veneer?

Posted in Veneers

That front tooth is bothering you, again. Just when you think you’ve forgotten about it, you catch a glimpse of your teeth in the mirror.

Whatever your complaint may be, you are not alone. Many people live in fear of having their photo taken due to having a tooth they’re embarrassed by.

But each year, many people take their dental fate into their own hands.

Dental crowns and veneers have proven to be the perfect options for covering up less-than-perfect teeth. What are the differences between these two restorative techniques? And which is right for you?

Crowns vs. Veneers

Dental crowns are often made from metal, porcelain, or a combination. The cap covers the entire tooth like a snug winter mitten on a hand. Crowns are load-bearing and thus meant to improve the strength of a tooth.

Veneers, on the other hand, could be likened more to a potholder rather than a full mitten. Just as you only need a little fabric to shield your hand from hot elements, a veneer provides only partial coverage for the front of a tooth. Placed over the visible “smile” surface of upper front teeth, veneers are porcelain shells that improve the appearance of enamel.

What Your Tooth Needs

For a front tooth that only needs some cosmetic enhancement, you could go either way. If that tooth has significant structural damage or decay or experiences a lot of bite force, then a crown is the secure option.

But if your tooth doesn’t need total reinforcement, then a conservative and lightweight veneer may be all you need.

To find out which option is most effective for restoring your tooth, contact your local dental office.

Posted on behalf of:
Dentistry of Highland Village
3651 Weslayan St. #208
Houston, TX 77027
(713) 360-7700

Jul
31

4 Ways to Reshape Your Smile

Are you unhappy with the shape of your smile?

Perhaps you have some teeth that you feel are:

  • Too big
  • Uneven
  • Rough
  • Gapped

There’s nothing like a balanced smile to show others you take your oral health and beauty seriously! You’ve got several options for achieving that goal.

  1. Bonding Or Veneers

You can close up gaps and smooth out chips with the help of porcelain dental veneers. These slim porcelain veneers neatly mask imperfections in your tooth and give a uniform appearance across multiple teeth.

Not ready to commit to veneers?

That’s okay – dental bonding is next on the list. Your dentist can bond just a small bit of material to your tooth to make a big difference. While bonding isn’t as complete as a veneer, it’s a conservative first step towards a gorgeous smile.

  1. Enamel Shaping

Did you know that it’s actually possible to shape your teeth themselves?

As long as your teeth are healthy enough to spare a little enamel, they can be polished to look more in line.

  1. Orthodontic Treatment

You can never be too old to benefit from wearing braces. Having just one tooth out of line could be enough to skew your whole smile. Correct that problem and you’ll be amazed at the difference.

  1. Gum Recontouring

Your teeth may not even be the problem. Uneven gum growth and recession can create an uneven smile. Dentists have techniques for gently removing and reshaping tissue around your teeth to discover a brighter smile.

Say “goodbye” to your old smile and welcome a new start! Ask your dentist which cosmetic dental treatments can make a difference in your life.

Posted on behalf of:
Elegant Smiles
1955 Cliff Valley Way NE #100
Brookhaven, GA 30329
404-634-4224

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