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We can create your Dream Smile. Having a beautiful Healthy Smile is something we all care about. In addition to providing family dentistry services, Dr. Anderton is a dentist experienced in a variety of cosmetic and restorative dental procedures. Make an appointment today to meet Dr. Anderton and discuss your needs and goals. Have the best dentist and staff in State College, according to our patients.
Routine preventive care provides the foundation for a healthy smile. Assessing each patient’s unique oral history and pre-existing dental health lays the groundwork for treatment planning restorative and reconstructive dental procedures. Below please find a listing of some of our most frequently provided dental services. Simply click on a topic to expand the content.
What is Cosmetic Dentistry?
Cosmetic dentistry refers to a variety of dental procedures that may be used singularly or in combination to create teeth and smiles that are flawlessly attractive. Creating your Dream Smile. Having a more Beautiful Smile is something we all care about, proper application of cosmetic dental procedures turns those desires into reality.
Some of the problems that cosmetic dentistry can correct include:
Spaces or Gaps between the Teeth
Discolored or Stained Teeth
Small or Short Teeth
Crowded or Rotated Teeth
Unsightly or Stained Fillings
Chipped or Broken Teeth
What are some common Cosmetic Dental procedures?
Cosmetic dentistry can correct problems with individual teeth or give a more natural and attractive appearance to multiple teeth. When cosmetic dental procedures are performed on several front teeth in order to produce an overall change in the appearance of your smile the process is often called a “Smile Makeover“. Smile Makeovers begin with a smile design consultation where diagnostic data is gathered and your goals and expectations are discussed. A cosmetic restoration plan is then created to achieve your desired results in harmony with your facial features and the image you wish to project. Below please find a brief description of some of our most popular cosmetic procedures.
Teeth whitening or tooth bleaching is one of the most simple and least expensive procedures in cosmetic dentistry and smile makeovers. Teeth whitening can restore the whiteness to natural tooth enamel to give you a more youthful smile. Most external and some internal stains can be lightened or eliminated by teeth whitening.
Dental Bonding, Tooth Colored Fillings, White Fillings
Dental bonding, also referred to as composite, composite resin or tooth colored fillings, involves using a tooth colored filling material to restore tooth structure that was lost to decay or other damage. This is a cosmetic alternative to the older silver (amalgam) filling material. In general, dental bonding is not as durable or stain resistant as treatments using porcelain as the restorative material however it is much less expensive and can be completed in a single visit. If dental bonding chips or breaks it may be repaired instead of replaced if no decay is present. Dental bonding can also be used to change the size and shape of teeth in cosmetic dentistry and smile makeovers.
Composite or Porcelain Veneers
A porcelain veneer is a thin shell of porcelain that is bonded onto a tooth to improve its cosmetic appearance. Porcelain veneers are among the latest innovations in cosmetic dentistry. Because of their ability to greatly change the overall appearance of smiles they are most often used in smile makeovers. Compared to dental bonding, porcelain veneers usually look more life like and they have the added benefit of resisting staining as well. Porcelain veneers can correct problems with spaces between teeth, crooked teeth, crowded teeth, internally and externally stained teeth, and short or poorly shaped teeth.
Cosmetic dentistry and smile makeovers both use enamel recontouring, also called Enamelplasty, to quickly give uneven teeth a more harmonious, even appearance. Enamel recontouring involves removing small amounts of enamel from different areas of the teeth in order to improve their shape and overall appearance by rounding off sharp points and smoothing irregular edges.
Inlays and Onlays
When a large part of a tooth is missing, and more strength, durability and esthetics than dental bonding can supply are required, porcelain or laboratory fabricated resin inlays or onlays are excellent options. Inlays cover one or more tooth surface areas between the cusps (a cusp is the pointed chewing section of a back tooth). Onlays replace one or more entire cusps of a tooth. Like dental crowns, inlays and onlays are more durable, stain resistant and esthetic than dental bonding. Inlays and onlays also strengthen the tooth they are bonded to more so than dental bonding does. In contrast to dental crowns, inlays and onlays are conservative, requiring the removal of only decayed areas of the tooth, leaving more of the healthy tooth structure intact. Inlays and onlays are more durable than dental bonding, however, due to their composition and color stability, in the case of porcelain, inlays and onlays are a much better long-term investment.
Dental Crowns and Dental Bridges
Cosmetic dentistry and smile makeovers use these restorations when strength as well as esthetics are needed. Unlike porcelain veneers, which cover only the front, sides and chewing edge of teeth, dental crowns cover the entire surface of the teeth and can be made with or without a metal substructure. Crowns have the added benefit of being cosmetic because they can improve the color, size, shape and overall appearance of teeth. Bridges are a series of crowns joined together to replace missing teeth.
Make an appointment today to learn how you can achieve your dream smile through cosmetic dental procedures.
White Fillings / Tooth Colored Fillings
White Fillings Can Improve Your Smile
Even the most attentive brushers and flossers may eventually develop cavities, one of the most common dental problems. Fortunately, they are also one of the easiest to remedy. For more than a century, traditional silver fillings have been used to treat cavities, but these materials have drawbacks. Metal fillings are susceptible to changes in temperature, and commonly expand and contract in response to heat and cold, compromising the structural integrity of the tooth. Also, metal fillings can detract from the brightness and overall aesthetics of your smile.
In light of these issues, tooth-colored fillings have emerged as a much healthier and better aesthetic option. They are substantially more durable than metal fillings, and have similar composure and wear patterns to enamel. The resin-based composite fillings perfectly match the shade of natural teeth and are the perfect solution for patients who do not want to sacrifice the look of their smile.
Benefits from Tooth-Colored Resin Fillings
Resin fillings are the most effective method for treating cavities.
Resin can be easily customized to match the shade of your natural teeth so your fillings are almost undetectable.
Resin doesn’t expand and contract with the temperature, like metal fillings, which protects the tooth’s structural integrity.
Because cavities can occur on any tooth surface, tooth-colored fillings are very versatile and applicable in many situations. For example, decay between anterior teeth can be cleaned and restored with tooth-colored dental composite, leaving no outward sign of restoration whatsoever.
Placing tooth-colored fillings is a quick and simple process. The decayed portion of the tooth is thoroughly cleaned and prepared for the filling, followed by an application of etching gel. The etch creates microscopic grooves in the teeth which facilitate strong bonding. After the etching gel is rinsed from the tooth, the composite material is placed incrementally. During this phase, light curing is used to harden each layer of the filling, resulting in a durable, indistinguishable restoration.
Dr. Anderton’s primary goal at is to provide each patient with the safest and most comprehensive treatment. While composite tooth fillings certainly contribute to the aesthetics of your smile, they are also an effective option, keeping your restored teeth strong and healthy.
Ceramic and Zirconia Crowns
Do I need a Dental Crown?
Dental crowns are a common procedure when dentists need to improve the aesthetics of a discolored or damaged tooth. While veneers provide a partial cover for one side of a damaged tooth, a crown is basically a “cap” which is placed over an entire damaged tooth. The crown is used to restore a broken or damaged tooth to the look of an original tooth.
What Options Are Available?
The first option is a metal crown. A metal crown has the advantages of strength and durability. The down side is that many patients do not want the metallic look in their smile. However, metal crowns may be the perfect choice for baby teeth that will eventually be replaced and for adult teeth that cannot be seen.
A second option is a porcelain-fused-to-metal crown. This may be a good choice for a more visible tooth. The supportive strength of metal is combined with the more natural looking porcelain on the outside of the tooth.
If you have a metal allergy, you may want to choose the option of an all-porcelain crown or an all-ceramic crown.
The common option is the zirconia or porcelain crown for those who are seeking a natural and bright smile. Zirconia and porcelain carry a natural, white enamel look. The tooth will appear healthy and real. Many people will not know that you are wearing a crown. Of course, this gives confidence to laugh, smile, and speak in any situation.
Although one of the oldest and most common dental treatments, many patients still find themselves wondering “what is a dental bridge?” Placement of a dental bridge begins with shaping of the teeth on both sides of the gap to be covered. An impression is then taken of the prepared teeth and sent to a dental technician who creates the bridge.
Before the permanent bridge is put in place, a temporary bridge is used to provide patients with comfort and functionality until their next appointment. A permanent dental bridge consists of a replacement tooth or teeth held between two crowns on either side. The crowns are placed on the previously prepared teeth and bonded in place, with the entire structure spanning the empty gap. After a quick examination to ensure proper fit and comfort, patients have a perfectly natural tooth replacement, one that provides excellent functionality and undeniable aesthetics.
How does Invisalign Treatment Work?
Your Invisalign® clear aligners are custom-made for you. The aligners are virtually invisible and fit snugly over your teeth.
Each aligner shifts your teeth slightly, moving them horizontally and vertically and even rotating them when needed. Your aligners are engineered to use the right amount of force in the right place at the right time.
When you change to the next set of aligners (typically every week) your teeth gradually move into position, following a custom treatment plan mapped out by Dr Anderton.
Only Invisalign clear aligners are made of proprietary, multilayer SmartTrack® material to gently shift your teeth into place.
Your Invisalign clear aligners
Your custom-made aligners will be made of our proprietary SmartTrack® material. They’re virtually invisible, so most people won’t even notice you’re wearing them.
Wear your Invisalign clear aligners 20 to 22 hours a day for the best results, taking them out to eat and to brush and floss.
As you wear each set of aligners, your teeth will gently and gradually shift into place. Dr Anderton may recommend that you begin wearing a new set of aligners every week and schedule check-ups every six weeks or so.
At every stage you’ll be able to see your progress and imagine how far your new smile will take you.
Your new smile
Is Invisalign® treatment appropriate for you? For the majority of cases, the answer is yes. Invisalign treatment is clinically proven to be effective for a broad range of teeth straightening cases, from mild to complex.
These are some common concerns Dr Anderton treats with Invisalign clear aligners:
Gaps between teeth can occur with abnormal continued growth of the jawbone. Missing teeth can also cause the surrounding teeth to shift due to the extra space, creating gaps in your teeth. Spacing issues and gaps between teeth can lead to gum problems (due to lack of protection by the teeth), periodontal pockets and increased risk of periodontal disease.
Overbite occurs when the upper teeth bite over the lower teeth. It’s typically caused by genetics, bad oral habits, or overdevelopment of the bone that supports the teeth. This can lead to gum problems or irritation, and/or wear on the lower teeth, and can cause painful jaw and joint problems.
Underbite can occur when the lower teeth protrude past the front teeth. It’s usually caused by undergrowth of the upper jaw, overgrowth of the lower jaw, or both. It can also be caused by missing upper teeth. This can prevent the normal function of front teeth or molars, which can lead to tooth wear. It can also cause painful jaw and joint problems.
Open bite often occurs when some teeth are unable to make physical contact with the opposing teeth for a proper bite. Most often caused by a genetic abnormal jaw structure or excessive thumb-sucking, an open bite can cause poor or painful chewing, and even speech impairment. It can also lead to greater issues like temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ).
Teeth crowding occurs when there is simply a lack of room within your jaw for all of your teeth to fit normally. When left untreated, overly crowded teeth can get worse over time, and result in severely crooked teeth. This crowding can lead to plaque accumulation, tooth decay and an increased chance of gum disease.
Crossbite can occur when the upper and lower jaws are both misaligned. It causes one or more upper teeth to bite on the inside of the lower teeth, and can happen on both the front and the sides of the mouth. This can cause wear of the teeth, gum disease and bone loss.
Schedule a consultation with Dr Anderton to learn more.
Composite or Porcelain Veneers
Composite Resin and Porcelain Veneers
Dental veneers, also known as porcelain veneers or composite veneers are thin shells of tooth-colored, translucent porcelain or composite resin, custom made to fit over teeth and improve their color, shape and overall appearance. Placement of dental veneers can dramatically improve your smile and appearance.
What types of problems can dental veneers correct?
Placement of dental veneers is sometimes referred to as “instant orthodontics” because they can be used to cover a variety of dental problems involving teeth in the “smile zone” including:
Dental veneers can improve the appearance of the teeth but they cannot realign the jaw or correct overbites and underbites. Orthodontics are required to correct these more complicated problems.
What are the alternatives to dental veneers?
The closest conservative cosmetic alternative to porcelain veneers is composite resin. Composite resin is a tooth-colored filling material that may be used to form dental veneers. Dental crowns may also be used to correct the same problems that dental veneers correct, however it is a much less conservative procedure.
What are the advantages of porcelain veneers? Porcelain veneers have several advantages compared to composite resin including:
Porcelain veneers are very durable. Although porcelain veneers are very thin, usually between 0.5 – 0.7 millimeters and inherently brittle, once bonded to healthy tooth structure it becomes very strong. Porcelain veneers can last for many years, usually 10-15 years, if you take good care of them using good oral hygiene and avoiding using them to crack or chew hard objects like ice.
Porcelain veneers create a very life-like and natural tooth appearance. The translucent properties of the porcelain allows the veneers to mimic the light handling characteristics of enamel giving it a sense of depth which is not possible with other cosmetic bonding materials such as composite resin.
Porcelain veneers resist staining. Unlike other cosmetic dental bonding materials, porcelain is a smooth, impervious ceramic and therefore will not pick up permanent stain from cigarette smoking or from dark or richly colored liquids or spices.
Porcelain veneers are conservative. Only a small amount of tooth structure is removed, if any during the procedure.
What are the disadvantages of porcelain veneers vs. composite resin veneers? The major disadvantages of porcelain veneers over composite resin include the following:
Porcelain veneers are not made at chairside. Porcelain veneers are fabricated in a dental laboratory and therefore require at least two visits.
Composite resin veneers are accomplished in one visit. An adequate amount of tooth structure is removed to allow for placement of composite resin in the desired shape without added tooth bulk. Bonding agent is applied. Composite resin is then added, light cured, then finished and polished.
Porcelain veneers are more expensive than composite veneers. The placement of veneers requires more time, expertise and resources in order to fabricate and bond and therefore cost more.
Porcelain veneers cannot be repaired. If they break porcelain veneers must be replaced.
Are you a good candidate for dental veneers?
Dental veneers are not appropriate for everyone or every tooth. Case selection is an extremely important factor in the success of this technique. Veneering teeth is not a reversible procedure if tooth structure must be removed to achieve your desired result Only an examination by Dr. Anderton can determine whether dental veneers are appropriate for making the changes you want.
Some of the situations where certain teeth or people are not good candidates for dental veneers include:
Unhealthy teeth. Dental decay and active gum disease must be treated prior to fabricating and bonding dental veneers.
Weakened teeth. If a significant amount of tooth structure is missing or has been replaced by a large filling the teeth will not be strong enough to function with a dental veneer.
Teeth with an inadequate amount of enamel present. Dental veneers are more successfully bonded onto tooth enamel.
People who habitually clench or grind on their teeth. Habitual clenching and grinding of the teeth can easily chip or break dental veneers. Dental nightguards may be a solution for this in some cases.
Persons without a stable bite.
Severely malpositioned teeth or misaligned teeth. Orthodontic treatment may be required to achieve the desired result.
What is Involved in Obtaining Porcelain Veneers? Usually two visits are required. The first visit may take between one to two hours. During the first visit:
Your teeth are examined, your desires and expectations are discussed with Dr. Anderton and your color shades are selected. It is critical that you take an active role in this “smile design” process. The size and shape of your teeth will be discussed. Also the corrective limitations of porcelain veneers will be discussed.
Your teeth may be prepared for porcelain veneers by trimming the enamel from the front and biting edge your teeth to accommodate the added thickness of the veneers so they can fit over your teeth without added bulk. Typically 0.5 – 0.7 millimeter of enamel will be removed.
An impression will be taken to make an exact replica of your teeth. This impression will be used to make a model upon which your porcelain veneer will be custom made.
Temporary veneers may or may not be placed upon your teeth, depending upon the amount of tooth structure removed and kind of changes being made.
The second visit may also take between one to two hours. During the second visit:
Temporary veneers, if present, will be removed.
The fit of the porcelain veneers will be evaluated by Dr. Anderton and then by you. This is a time for you to check the shape and color, fit and feel of the veneers to see if they meet your expectations before they are bonded to your teeth. We can make any changes you want before they are bonded to your teeth. Once porcelain veneers are bonded it is best not to adjust them.
Once you approve of your veneers your teeth will be cleaned with a mild acidic solution. A tooth-colored, bonding adhesive is applied to the teeth and veneer then dried and hardened (bonded) to your teeth with a curing light .
Once they are bonded any excess cement will be removed, your teeth will be flossed and your veneers will be polished.
What Care is Required to Maintain Dental Veneers?
Dental veneers can chip or come off if not cared for properly. To improve their durability and longevity you need to maintain consistent good oral hygiene and have regular dental examinations and cleanings at least twice each year. In addition, you must avoid using them to bite or crack hard objects like nuts and ice
Dental Implants: The best method for replacing missing teeth.
Over the past decade, dental implants have emerged as the most comprehensive and effective option for replacing missing teeth. The prosthetic teeth are a vast improvement over traditional replacements such as dentures and bridges. Dr. Anderton has helped countless patients reclaim a natural, healthy and functional smile through several types of dental implant procedures.
The greatest advantage of dental implants is that they are far more secure than dentures and bridges. Many patients find that their dental implants allow them to eat and speak naturally and are amazed at how well implants mimic both the look and feel of natural teeth. This exciting new technology offers several different ways to replace missing teeth and help you regain confidence in your smile.
Benefits of Dental Implants
Implants are a permanent solution for replacing missing teeth.
Implant teeth made with dental porcelain are as strong as natural teeth.
Many patients find that speaking and chewing with implants is as natural as when they had their own teeth.
To the untrained eye, dental implants are indistinguishable from real teeth.
Implants prevent bone loss that can accompany missing teeth.
Dental implants don’t require any special cleaning. Just brush and floss as usual.
Types of Implants
Single Dental Implants
Single dental implants are the most straightforward way to replace teeth. These prosthetic devices are the equivalent of an entire tooth from crown to root. A strong metal post is inserted into the jawbone, serving as a solid anchor for the tooth. Once the post fuses with the bone, a permanent crown is placed. In many cases, porcelain is the material of choice for the crown, as it is not only entirely natural looking, it is by far the best material from a functional standpoint.
All-on-4 Dental Implants
For patients who are missing most or all of their teeth, the All on 4 option is the perfect way to create a full set of durable and aesthetic teeth. This procedure is similar to single dental implants in that it involves the use of surgical-grade titanium posts. Only four posts are needed, however, as they are strategically placed throughout the upper or lower arch. Once in place, a metal bar spans each post and provides an attachment surface for a set of custom-made teeth. These teeth are much stronger and more aesthetic than dentures, and have allowed many patients to enjoy all the foods they did with their natural teeth. All on 4 dental implants are also a more permanent and durable option than dentures.
Denture Stabilization and Mini Dental Implants
The biggest drawback of dentures is that they can be unstable or loose-fitting in the mouth. If you have dentures and are experiencing this problem, denture stabilization is an excellent option for making your denture more comfortable and functional. This process consists of placing several “mini” implant posts in the jawbone. These mini posts make it possible to easily snap dentures on and off. While in place, though, the denture is far more secure than traditional dentures.
Dental Implants and Bridges
Dental implant technology also offers a huge improvement on traditional bridges. Implant bridges are similar to single dental implants, except that multiple teeth can be replaced with only two posts. Unlike a traditional crown and bridge, which requires alteration of natural teeth to place a crown, implant bridges consist of two posts on either side of an edentulous space. Replacement teeth then span the area and provide a more functional eating surface than typical bridges.
If you are missing one, multiple, or all of your teeth, Dr. Anderton can offer numerous dental implant solutions for restoring your smile and your self-confidence. Just as important, you can once again experience the joy of eating, chewing and speaking without pain or discomfort. Dental implants do not require any special hygienic practices and can be brushed just as though they were natural teeth.
Dental Implants Procedure
The process of placing dental implants begins with creating a small hole in the jawbone beneath the area in need of a replacement tooth. Dr. Anderton then places a surgical-grade titanium post into the hole. The post has threads similar to those on a screw, making it easier for the surrounding bone to fuse with the post. This process, known as “osseointegration,” is given ample time to complete, although in some instances a crown can be placed in the same day. Regardless, dental implants are topped with a porcelain crown. Combined with a solid anchor within the jaw, these types of crowns give patients full use of their new tooth. In fact, the function and appearance of dental implants is nearly identical to that of natural teeth.
In some cases, sufficient bone mass for placement of the titanium post may not be present in the jaw. Dr. Anderton can perform procedures that increase the bone density and create an ideal substrate for placing dental implants.
There are several dental implant variations that can be beneficial in a full mouth reconstruction. Several teeth can be replaced with only two posts, or an entire arch of teeth may be seated on only 4 posts, a method known as “all on 4.” Finally, dental implants can be used to create far better dentures, including those which easily snap on and off.
Give Your Smile A “Face Lift” With Dental Bonding
Dental Bonding is a procedure that can be used to make small, cosmetic changes to the front of a tooth. Dr. Anderton uses bonding to repair cracks, chips and flaws in teeth or to whiten them for a gentle “face lift” as an alternative to more lengthy cosmetic procedures.
With Dental Bonding, a tooth-colored resin material is applied to the surface of a tooth and hardened with a special light, which ultimately “bonds” the material to the tooth to restore or improve person’s smile. Dental bonding can be a more affordable alternative to veneers, but porcelain veneers can provide a longer-lasting result.
What conditions can Dental Bonding fix?
Dental bonding is an option that can be considered:
To repair decayed teeth (composite resins are used to fill cavities)
To repair chipped or cracked teeth
To improve the appearance of discolored teeth
To close spaces between teeth
To make teeth look longer
To change the shape of teeth
As a cosmetic alternative to amalgam fillings
To protect a portion of the tooth’s root that has been exposed when gums recede
Procedure for having a tooth bonded.
Little advance preparation is needed for dental bonding. Anesthesia is often not necessary unless the bonding is being used to fill a decayed tooth. Dr. Anderton will use a shade guide to select a composite resin color that will closely match the color of your tooth.
The bonding process
Next, the surface of the tooth will be roughened and a conditioning liquid applied. These procedures help the bonding material adhere to the tooth. The tooth-colored, putty-like resin is then applied, molded, and smoothed to the desired shape. An ultraviolet light is then used to harden the material. After the material is hardened, Dr. Anderton will further trim and shape it, and polish it to match the sheen of the rest of the tooth surface.
Dental bonding takes about 30 to 60 minutes per tooth to complete.
KöR Teeth Whitening® -Simply Whiter Teeth.
First, your teeth will be examined and cleaned to make sure there are no cavities, loose filings, gum problems or other issues that may be exacerbated by the whitening process. Dr. Anderton will then fabricate custom fit whitening trays for your teeth. Then the bleaching gel, a hydrogen peroxide solution, is applied to your teeth in the custom trays for a two week period. After two weeks of at home bleaching, an in-office treatment will be done, which will complete the whitening process.
Advantages of Professional Whitening:
Fast and dramatic results!
Safe and simple
Our teeth whitening system, KöR Whitening®, is a very effective system that can whiten the teeth up to 14 shades! Unlike other whitening methods, the KöR System® is able to rejuvenate and restore teeth to their youthful look!
Having a routine teeth cleaning is arguably the most important step in maintaining a healthy, vibrant smile. At our dental office, early detection and prevention is a top priority, and regular cleaning appointments make it easier for Dr. Anderton to identify any potential trouble spots before they become painful or require significant restoration.
Benefits of Routine Cleanings
Routine cleanings are critical for maintaining good oral health.
Regular cleanings are critical to keep plaque and tartar deposits from accumulating on the teeth.
Regular cleaning appointments make it easier to identify potential trouble spots before they become painful or require treatment.
Ultrasonic scalers painlessly clear deposits from the teeth using undetectable ultrasonic vibrations.
After a thorough cleaning, the teeth are healthier, look better and feel great as well.
Thanks to modern dental instruments, teeth cleaning is easier and more effective than ever before. Our talented hygienists use the latest tools to give your teeth the most in-depth cleaning possible, and today’s procedures are extremely comfortable and pain-free. Unlike the scraping and picking that many patients think of, today’s teeth cleaning is made easier with ultrasonic scalers. These instruments use undetectable ultrasonic vibrations to eliminate plaque and tartar from the teeth. This method is not only more effective than previous techniques, it is far more enjoyable and does not require the scraping that was once the norm in dental cleanings.
Of course, periodic teeth cleaning is not enough to maintain optimal oral health. It is important that you take the necessary steps to keep your mouth healthy each and every day.
Nightguards and Mouthguards
Teeth grinding can be caused not just by stress and anxiety but by sleep disorders, an abnormal bite or teeth that are missing or crooked. The symptoms of teeth grinding include:
Teeth that are painful or loose
Dr. Anderton can fit you with a nightguard to protect your teeth during sleep. If stress is the cause you need to find a way to relax. Meditation, counseling and exercise can all help reduce stress and anxiety.
Teeth grinding is also common in children. However, because their teeth and jaws change and grow so quickly it is not usually a damaging habit that requires treatment and most outgrow it by adolescence.
Anyone who plays a sport where there is a risk of collision with another person or a hard surface should wear a mouthguard . The obvious sports are football, rugby, lacrosse, hockey (ice, field, roller), martial arts, boxing, wrestling, MMA and basketball.
Not as obvious but just as important are baseball, volleyball, soccer, water polo, gymnastics, softball, skiing, snowboarding, BMX bicycling, racquetball, acrobatics and skateboarding. All these sports have the potential for facial and oral injuries, and a mouthguard is recommended. As recommended by the ADA and the Academy for Sports Dentistry, a pressure-laminated, custom fitted mouthguard offers the best protection in contact sports. A custom fitted mouthguard allows for a more comfortable, stable fit that won’t dislodge during collisions. Also, breathing and speaking are much easier, and the risk of concussions and damage to the jaw is greatly reduced.
What are Intra Oral Cameras?
• A small digital camera that looks like a pen
• Connects to our computer and a TV screen to view what we see in your mouth
• It helps to more easily understand the condition of the tooth
• The camera contains a bright LED which helps us diagnose cavities or fractures that might be difficult to see with the naked eye
Advantages of Intra Oral Cameras
Instant: You can instantly see what we see as we investigate your teeth, and also what we do when we work on them. Accurate: We can take a picture of the inside of your mouth for a bigger and better look, and it really helps to track any changes over time. Easy referrals or second opinions: If we need to get another opinion from a specialist, we can easily take a photo and email it to them. Memory jogger: We store these images on your dental record to compare back to later – a great way to really track erosion, staining or other issues. Better planning: Together we can discuss the best treatment plan for you as we go – you then decide how to proceed. Learn more: It is a great educational tool to show you exactly what is going on in your mouth… rather than merely trying to describe it to you in words!
What is a Root Canal?
A root canal is one of the most common dental procedures performed with well over 14 million procedures taking place every year. This simple treatment can save your natural teeth and prevent the need for dental implants or bridges.
At the center of your tooth is pulp. Pulp is a collection of blood vessels that helps to build the surrounding tooth. Infection of the pulp can be caused by trauma to the tooth, deep decay, cracks and chips, or repeated dental procedures. Symptoms of the infection can be identified as visible injury or swelling of the gums, sensitivity to temperature or pain in the tooth and gums.
How is a Root Canal performed?
If you experience any of the symptoms above, Dr. Anderton will most likely recommend non-surgical treatment 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. By the way, root canal pain is also a myth. In fact, root canal treatment doesn’t cause pain it relieves it.
After your root canal therapy has been completed, a restoration will be necessary to seal up the canal, prevent future leakage, and to prevent the tooth from fracturing. Dr. Anderton will discuss your options with you.
Oral Cancer Screenings
Oral Cancer Screenings
More people are being diagnosed with oral cancer than ever before. In the past, traditional risk factors such as drinking, smoking and using chewing tobacco were considered the only cause of oral cancer, usually found in people age 40 and older. Oral cancer is now being found in a younger population of men and women due to their exposure to the HPV (Human Papillomavirus).
That is why the Centers for Disease Control recommends that all patients over the age of 17 be screened annually for oral cancer.
Oral cancer is one of the most curable diseases when it’s caught early. Early detection and diagnosis can make a tremendous difference in life expectancy; oral cancer is 90% curable when found in its early stages. However, oral cancer is often non symptomatic in these early stages.
Oral cancer is far too often discovered in late stages of development, the primary reason for the consistently high death rate. Oral cancer treatment often results in disfiguring effects on patients, and can seriously compromise their quality of life.
According to the Oral Cancer Foundation, close to 40,000 Americans will be diagnosed with oral or pharyngeal cancer this year. It will cause over 8,000 deaths, killing roughly 1 person per hour, 24 hours per day. Of those 40,000 newly diagnosed individuals, only slightly more than half will be alive in 5 years.
The number above has not significantly improved in decades. The death rate for oral cancer is higher than that of cancers which we hear about routinely, so the best practice for a long and healthy life is to play it safe with regular oral cancer screenings.
Dental sealants act as a barrier to prevent cavities. They are a plastic material usually applied to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth (premolars and molars) where decay occurs most often.
Thorough brushing and flossing help remove food particles and plaque from smooth surfaces of teeth. But toothbrush bristles cannot reach all the way into the depressions and grooves to extract food and plaque. Sealants protect these vulnerable areas by “sealing out” plaque and food.
Sealants are easily applied. The sealant is painted onto the tooth enamel, where it bonds directly to the tooth and hardens. This plastic resin bonds into the depressions and grooves (pits and fissures) of the chewing surfaces of back teeth. The sealant acts as a barrier, protecting enamel from plaque and acids. As long as the sealant remains intact, the tooth surface will be protected from decay. Sealants hold up well under the force of normal chewing and may last several years before a reapplication is needed. During your regular dental visits, Dr. Anderton will check the condition of the sealants and reapply them when necessary.
The likelihood of developing pit and fissure decay begins early in life, so children and teenagers are obvious candidates. But adults can benefit from sealants as well.
Key ingredients in preventing Tooth Decay and maintaining a Healthy Mouth are:
Brushing twice a day with an ADA-accepted fluoride toothpaste
Cleaning between the teeth daily with floss or another interdental cleaner
Eating a balanced diet and limiting snacks
Keeping a regular appointment with Dr. Anderton
Digital radiography is a form of X-ray imaging, where digital X-ray sensors are used instead of traditional photographic film. Advantages include reduced radiation can be used to produce an image of similar contrast to conventional radiography and the ability to digitally transfer and enhance images.
Instead of X-ray film, digital radiography uses a digital image capture device. This gives advantages of immediate image preview and availability; elimination of film processing steps; a wider dynamic range, as well as the ability to apply special image processing techniques that enhance overall display quality of the image.
Benefits of Dental X-Rays
Digital X-rays reveal much more than traditional X-rays on film.
Digital X-ray technology produces the safest, most detailed images of one’s entire mouth, including the underlying structures that support the teeth and gums.
With Digital X-rays, images can be sharpened, altered or zoomed in for extreme close-up.
Digital X-rays expose patients to as much as 90 percent less radiation than conventional X-rays.
Digital X-rays do not use chemicals to fix images on film so they are more environmentally friendly.
Digital dental X-rays boast many improvements over traditional X-rays which were used for decades in all fields of medicine.
Digital technology makes it possible to obtain a highly detailed image of the underlying tooth structures.
With digital X-rays, Dr. Anderton can not only take a higher quality image, she can use computer software to sharpen, alter or zoom in and out from the image. Digital X-rays are far more advanced in their ability to provide detailed images of small spaces, such as the canals in roots of the teeth. With this technology, Dr. Anderton is better able to diagnose and treat a wide range of dental health issues.
Dental X-rays that make use of computer software also expose patients to far less radiation, as much as 90% less than conventional x-rays. To some extent, digital X-rays are even more environmentally friendly, as they do not use chemicals to fix images on film like traditional X-rays.
Periodontal Therapy and Cleanings
Periodontal Therapy and Cleanings
This disease is caused by bacteria that invade the gums. When the bacteria are not able to be removed by daily brushing and flossing, they invade the gums and can cause bone loss, bleeding, infection. Research has show a link between periodontal disease and cardiovascular disease (i.e. heart disease, stroke), as well as pre-term births.
Periodontal therapy is the initial treatment for patients who have been diagnosed with periodontal disease. A dental hygienist will perform a procedure called scaling and root planing to clean under the gums on the root structures of the teeth. Patients typically need to be numb during this procedure.
Periodontal cleanings are performed every 3 to 4 months on patients who have been treated with periodontal therapy in the past. These cleanings assure that the periodontal disease does not recur.
Treatment for Gum Disease
What is Gum Disease?
To understand why the treatment for periodontal gum disease is so important, it is essential to understand what gum disease is and how it affects the entire mouth. The gums are the primary support structure for the teeth. Just as important, the bones beneath the gum line serve as an anchor for holding the teeth in place. When either of these systems is compromised, the health of your teeth is at tremendous risk. Gingivitis and periodontal disease begins when plaque and bacteria accumulate between the teeth and in gum pockets. Within the pockets, harmful microorganisms eat away at the surfaces of teeth and deepen the gum pockets, making it even easier for bacteria to propagate its effects.
The deepening of gum pockets and subsequent gum recession creates the added problem of exposing more of the tooth’s surface to decay and deteriorating the tooth’s support system. In advanced periodontal disease, pathogens can invade the underlying bone and cause destruction. When this happens, the teeth loosen and, if left untreated, eventually fall out.
Treatment for Gum Disease
Nearly half of all American adults suffer from some form of gingivitis. Almost 1-in-4 have advanced periodontal disease. Dr. Anderton can identify and treat these issues early.
The gums provide critical support for the teeth and protect the underlying bone from destructive bacteria. Treating your gums can save these structures from loss.
Scaling and root planing, the most common treatments for gum disease, can be done very comfortably with ultrasonic scalers and anesthetics.
Once the teeth are clean, the gums can reattach to tooth surfaces and close the spaces where bacteria thrive.
Persistent bad breath is a common symptom of gum disease. Having your gums professionally treated will often improve your breath as well.
The treatment for periodontal gum disease is relatively straightforward. When identified early, many of the damaging effects of gum disease can be stopped and, in some cases, reversed. One of the most common treatments prescribed by Dr. Anderton is scaling and root planing. This procedure consists of removing tartar and calculus from the teeth, both above and below the gum line. Thanks to anesthetic agents, the process is very comfortable. Furthermore, the use of high-tech ultrasonic scalers makes it easier and more effective to remove tartar and other harmful agents from tooth surfaces. Invisible ultrasonic vibrations help loosen tartar and calculus, making their removal easier and more pleasant for the patient.
The goal of this treatment for periodontal gum disease is to rid the teeth of substances that are causing the gum recession and pocket deepening. Once the teeth are clean, the gums can reattach to tooth surfaces, closing gum pockets and eliminating the spaces where bacteria thrive.
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