General treatment

Our practice can provide a wide range of dental services. This flexibility saves you time and allows you to keep the vast majority of your dental care within one practice. There are times where to meet your dental goals we will need to refer to a dental specialist. In these cases we pride ourselves in being able to be the quarterback in your treatment in making sure to send you to a specialist’s office which can best serve your needs. Our emphasis is on total preventive care for our patients. Total care begins at home with proper home care instructions and is maintained with regular hygiene visits, regular check-ups and continued home oral health routines.

Our practice also provides the highest-quality services for restoring mouths that have been damaged by dental disease and injury and common problems that require cosmetic dentistry. Our primary goal for our patients is to achieve and maintain optimum oral health through advances in techniques, technologies and by maintaining their scheduled dental exams.

Cleanings

Although it will vary patient to patient, the average person will need to schedule a routine dental cleaning twice a year to avoid gingivitis from developing. During this visit, one of our dental hygienists will remove plaque from your teeth, especially from places where your brush can’t reach, such as underneath the gum line and in-between teeth. During the cleaning, the hygienist and dentist will evaluate the level of inflammation of your gums and help you adjust your at home, and in office routine accordingly. It is important to get individualized care when it comes to your oral health. We will then clean your teeth and apply fluoride to help protect your teeth once you leave the office.

Fluoride is an extremely important advancement in dental and oral health. Studies consistently show that a moderate but consistent exposure of teeth to fluoride helps strengthen and rebuild tooth structure, and helps prevent future decay.

If you are due for your dental cleaning or have consistent bleeding of your gums when flossing, please call our office to schedule an appointment.

Fillings

The concept of a “filling” is replacing and restoring your tooth structure that is damaged due to decay or fracture with a material. We can replace old, broken-down fillings with white fillings to restore your smile and teeth to a more natural look and feel. With today’s advancements, in most cases we can eliminate the dark, black appearance in your teeth with tooth-colored resin or porcelain materials. There are still some indications for silver fillings but they are becoming less and less with advances in isolation techniques.

Tooth Extractions

General Extractions

An extraction is the complete removal of a tooth. Extractions are sometimes necessary if a primary tooth is preventing the normal eruption of a permanent tooth, if the tooth has suffered extensive tooth decay or trauma that cannot be repaired, if the patient has gum disease, or if the tooth is impacted (usually the wisdom teeth). Depending on the complexity of the case, an extraction can be performed surgically or non-surgically. A local anesthetic is used to ensure your child is as comfortable as possible throughout the procedure.

Wisdom Teeth

Your third molars are more commonly called “wisdom teeth.” Usually appearing in the late teens or early twenties, third molars often lack the proper space in the jaw to erupt fully or even at all. This common condition is called impaction.When any tooth lacks the space to come through or simply develops in the wrong place of your jaw and becomes impacted, problems can arise. Primarily, damage to adjacent teeth and infection can occur.

In certain cases, the wisdom tooth that cannot come through becomes inflamed under the gums and in the jawbone, causing a sac to develop around the root of the tooth that then fills with liquid. This can cause a cyst or an abscess if it becomes infected. If either of these situations goes untreated, serious damage to the underlying bone and surrounding teeth and tissues can result.

To potentially stave off this result, an extraction of one, several or all of the wisdom teeth may be advised.. Ask our staff for more information regarding tooth extractions if you feel you may need one.

Bonding

Bonding is a common solution for:

  • Fixing or repairing chipped or cracked teeth
  • Reducing unsightly gaps or spaces between teeth
  • Hiding discoloration or faded areas on the tooth’s surface
  • Often, composite bonding is used to improve the appearance of your teeth and enhance your smile. As the name indicates, composite material, either a plastic or resin, is bonded to an existing tooth. Unlike veneers or crowns, composite bonding removes little, if any, of the original tooth.

Composite bonding has many advantages:

  • It is a quick process, which typically lasts less than one hour.
  • It does not reduce the tooth’s original structure and is relatively inexpensive.
  • Composite bonds, however, are not as durable and long-lasting as veneers and crowns and may need to be re-touched or replaced in the future.
  • Composite bonds stain more easily and therefore require proper care and regular cleaning. In order to ensure the longest possible duration of the bonding, composites should be brushed and flossed daily. Common staining elements include coffee, tea, tobacco, foods and candy.

Digital X-rays

In order to provide our patients with the highest quality of dental services, we use dental radiographs, or X-rays. These radiographs provide us with invaluable information about your oral and dental health.

While radiographic equipment does produce radiation (and depends on that radiation to function properly), modern advances in technology are continually reducing the amount of radiation that is produced. In fact, studies have shown that the amount of radiation produced by these machines is not significantly higher than other “normal” sources of radiation that we are exposed to on perhaps a daily basis, such as televisions and airplanes.

X-rays work on a simple principle: the X-rays are stimulated and sent through the mouth. When these rays pass through, they are absorbed more by the bones in your mouth than the gums and other soft tissues, creating a picture of how the teeth inside your mouth are positioned, as well as any potential areas of weakness or decay in your teeth.

While this radiation is very low, it is still recommended that anyone avoid unnecessary X-rays.

Cosmetic Dentistry

Teeth Whitening

Your teeth will darken over time. Changes in the color of your teeth can be caused by such factors as the food and beverages consumed (like coffee, tea, and soda). Other known factors for discoloration may include childhood medications or illnesses, tobacco use or improper oral hygiene. We can provide a variety of options for whitening your smile.

Veneers

Veneers are thin, semi-translucent “shells” typically attached to your front teeth. Veneers are customized from porcelain material that is bonded to your teeth. For those that do not want orthodontics, veneers are an alternative means for you to get that straighter and brighter smile. We do caution people to try to minimize the amount of manmade materials in their mouths, so generally orthodontics would be the preferred method to straighten teeth over a procedure like veneers which need to be replaced throughout your lifetime.

Common problems that veneers are used for:

  • Spaces between the teeth
  • Broken or chipped teeth
  • Unsightly, stained or discolored teeth
  • Permanently stained or discolored teeth
  • Crooked or misshapen teeth

Please contact our office if you have any further questions on veneers.

Crowns and Bridges

Crowns

A crown is a custom-made covering that fits over an original tooth that is either decayed, damaged or cracked. Crowns are made of a variety of different materials such as porcelain, gold, acrylic resin or a mix of these materials.

The treatment plan for a patient receiving a crown involves:

  1. Numbing the tooth to remove the decay in or around it.
  2. Re-sculpturing the tooth to provide an ideal fit for the crown.
  3. Making an impression of your teeth in order to create a custom-made crown (usually takes one to two weeks).
  4. Making a temporary crown out of acrylic resin and fitting it onto the tooth during the interim period when the custom-made crown is being created.
  5. Applying the crown (when received from the lab) by removing the temporary crown and fitting the custom-made one onto the tooth.
  6. After ensuring that the crown has the proper look and fit, the dentist cements it into place.

This process generally consists of a minimum of two to three visits over a three to four week period. Once the procedure is completed, proper dental hygiene, including daily brushing and flossing, is required to maintain healthy, bacteria-free teeth, gums and crowns. This helps in the prevention of gum disease. Even with proper care, like any man-made materials in your mouth, crowns will need to be replaced, but the better you take care of them, the longer they will last..

Bridges

A bridge is a dental device that fills a space that a tooth previously occupied. A bridge may be necessary to prevent:

  • Shifting of the teeth that can lead to bite problems (occlusion) and/or jaw problems and resultant periodontal disease.
  • Bridges safeguard the integrity of existing teeth and help maintain a healthy, vibrant smile.
  • Bridges are being used less and less in the industry, because we have found that they can extend problems rather than keeping them isolated. When you bridge the gap between 2 teeth, you have now made maintenence much more difficult so with time, this can lead your 1 tooth defect turning into a 2 or 3 tooth defect.
  • A much preferred way of replacing a missing tooth which keeps the problem gap isolated, is getting a dental implant.

Implants

An alternative to bridges, partials, or complete dentures may be dental implants. Implants are used to replace missing roots and support artificial replacement teeth. They are comfortable and look like natural teeth.
A dental implant is an artificial root made of titanium alloy. It is inserted into the jaw to replace the root of the natural tooth. An artificial replacement tooth is attached to the implant. The implant acts as an anchor to hold the replacement tooth in place.

An implant

Here Are Some Of The Most Common Questions We Get About Dental Implants

WHAT ARE DENTAL IMPLANTS?

A dental implant is an artificial root made of titanium alloy. It is inserted into the jaw to replace the root of the natural tooth. An artificial replacement tooth is attached to the implant. The implant acts as an anchor to hold the replacement tooth in place.

WHO CAN GET DENTAL IMPLANTS?

If you are in good general health, have healthy gums and have enough bone in the jaw to hold an implant, dental implants might be right for you. If your jawbone has shrunk or if it has not developed normally, you may be able to have a bone graft to build up the bone. A bone graft is a way of adding new bone to rebuild your jaw to the way it used to be.

ARE THEY EXPENSIVE?

Initially, you may feel dental implants are expensive. However, they represent a more permanent and natural solution than dentures and bridges. Thus, there is a greater initial investment but because they have to be replaced less often, they tend to cost less over time than the older ways of replacing teeth. They should last for many years, in fact a well placed and well maintained dental implant may even last the lifetime of the patient. Independent surveys of implant patients show that they feel the investment was worth it and they would do it again!

HOW LONG WILL IT TAKE?

Total treatment time can take months. In certain situations, implants can be placed on the same day as your tooth is removed, other situations may require additional procedures such as bone or gum grafting and time for adequate healing to have taken place prior to your implant surgery. It is also important to note that while the implant can be placed on the same day, your final restoration will not be placed at that time.
“Teeth in a day” is a marketing term used by some dentists to describe same day implant surgery but they do not tell you that there are many appointments leading up to the surgery and your final restoration is not done that day.

WHAT IF I CAN GET IT DONE CHEAPER SOMEWHERE ELSE?

Many prospective dental implant patients gravitate towards dental offices offering a “Special” or advertising “The Lowest Dental Implant cost!” While we all love a good deal, it’s important to remember that this is surgery. The quality of the surgery should always set precedence over price. In fact, more times than not, choosing price over quality ends up costing you more in the long run. Not just financially, but emotionally as well. A failed surgery often results in a permanent esthetic and functional compromise.

WHAT ELSE SHOULD I KNOW?

Here are just a few points to think about when considering your decision to get dental implants:

  • Several visits may be needed until the process is done.
  • Checkups will be scheduled during the following year so your dentist can be sure your implants are working properly.
  • Implant dentistry is not yet a recognized specialty in British Columbia. There are no implant specialists.

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