DENTAL PROCEDURES & TEETH CLEANINGS FROM VICTORIA’S DR. PATRICK J.S. FINNIGAN INC.
CLEANINGS & PREVENTION
Dental Exams & Cleanings
Dental Exam - A comprehensive dental exam will be performed by your dentist at your initial dental visit. At regular check-up exams, your dentist and hygienist will perform the following:
Professional Dental Cleaning - During your cleaning appointment one of our Registered Dental Hygienists will:
Digital radiography (digital X-ray) is the latest technology used to take dental X-rays. Dental X-rays are essential diagnostic tools that provide valuable information not visible during a regular dental exam. Dentists and dental hygienists use this information to safely and accurately detect hidden dental abnormalities and complete an accurate treatment plan. Without X-rays, problem areas can go undetected.
Fluoride is the most effective agent available to help prevent tooth decay. Your RDH will provide you with rinse or varnish options.
Many people are afflicted with bruxism, or teeth grinding. Some people may do this consciously during the day, but it is a larger problem at night while you are asleep. Grinding your teeth can damage enamel, wear down teeth, cause jaw pain, or irritate your gums
A night guard provides a barrier between your top and bottom teeth while you sleep. All night guards are custom fitted for comfort and to allow for proper breathing. Your dentist will take an impression of your teeth and have the night guard created by a dental lab.
A sealant is a thin, plastic coating applied to the chewing surface of molars, premolars and any deep grooves (called pits and fissures) of teeth. More than 75% of dental decay begins in these deep grooves. A sealant protects the tooth by sealing deep grooves, creating a smooth, easy to clean surface. Sealants require maintenance and on occasion may need to be removed, or removed and replaced.
Oral Hygiene Aids
There are numerous types of oral hygiene aids on the supermarket shelves, and it can be difficult to determine which will provide the best benefit to your teeth. During your regular dental check-ups and cleanings, your dentist and hygienist can assist you in choosing the correct oral hygiene aids for your mouth.
What is Periodontal Disease?
The term “periodontal” means “around the tooth.” Periodontal disease (also known as gum disease) is a common inflammatory condition that affects the supporting and surrounding soft tissues of the tooth, eventually affecting the jawbone itself in the disease’s most advanced stages. Usually preceded by gingivitis, periodontal disease is a progressive condition that eventually leads to the destruction of the connective tissue and jawbone. If left untreated, it can cause shifting teeth, loose teeth, and eventually tooth loss. Periodontal disease is the leading cause of tooth loss among adults in the developed world and should always be promptly treated.
Periodontal disease is diagnosed by your dentist or dental hygienist during your regular dental check-up. Typically, a periodontal probe is gently used to measure the space between the tooth and gum. Your dentist or hygienist will use pocket depths, amount of bleeding, inflammation, tooth mobility, etc., to make a diagnosis
Treatment & Maintenance
Periodontal treatment methods depend upon the type and severity of the disease. Your dentist and dental hygienist will evaluate for periodontal disease and recommend the appropriate treatment.
A composite (tooth colored) filling is used to repair a tooth that is affected by decay, cracks, fractures, etc. The decayed or affected portion of the tooth will be removed and then filled with a composite filling.
Porcelain Crowns (Caps)
A crown (or cap) is a covering that encases the entire tooth surface restoring it to its original shape and size. A crown protects and strengthens tooth structure that cannot be restored with fillings or other types of restorations. Although there are several types of crowns, porcelain (tooth colored crown) are the most popular.
Porcelain Fixed Bridges
A dental bridge is a fixed (non-removable) appliance and is an excellent way to replace missing teeth. There are several types of bridges. You and your dentist will discuss the best options for your particular case. The “traditional bridge” is the most popular type and is usually made of porcelain fused to metal. Porcelain fixed bridges are most popular because they resemble your natural teeth.
Dentures & Partial Dentures
Both complete and partial dentures are removable dental appliances that serve as replacement for missing teeth and surrounding tissue. They are made to closely resemble your natural teeth and may even enhance your smile.
Veneers are very thin pieces of tooth shaped porcelain that are custom made (for shape and color) by a professional dental lab. They are bonded onto the front of teeth to create an attractive smile. Veneers can completely reshape your teeth and smile and may provide an alternative to crowns or implants in some cases.
Teeth whitening (or bleaching) is a simple, non-invasive dental treatment used to change the color of natural tooth enamel. We offer the popular method of customized trays with an easy whitening system that can be done in the comfort of your own home. You will receive care instructions for your teeth and trays, and be encouraged to visit your dentist regularly to help maintain a beautiful, healthy, white smile.
Cracked and fractured teeth are common dental problems. In cases where the tooth root is affected, root canal therapy may be a viable treatment option. A crown or filling will then be added to stabilize the tooth for normal function. When the crack is too severe for the tooth to be saved, the dentist will perform an extraction and provide restorative options.
Root Canal Therapy
Root canal therapy is needed when the nerve of a tooth is affected by decay or infection. In order to save the tooth, the pulp (the living tissue inside the tooth), nerves, bacteria, and any decay are removed and the resulting space is filled with special, medicated, dental materials. Having a root canal done on a tooth is the treatment of choice to save a tooth that otherwise would die and have to be removed.
Dental Implant Restorations
Dental implants are a great way to replace missing teeth. Dental implants (usually titanium) are surgically placed into the upper or lower jaw bone by a specialist. Following the implant surgery and healing time, the implants can then be used for individual crown restoration or as support for dental appliances such as partials and dentures. The teeth attached to implants are very natural looking and often enhance or restore a patient’s smile!
First visit and why primary teeth are important:
One of the most common misconceptions about primary teeth is that they are irrelevant to the child’s future oral health. However, their importance is emphasized by the Canadian Dental Association, which urges parents to schedule a “baby checkup” with a pediatric dentist within six months of the first tooth emerging. Generally, the first primary tooth breaks through the gums between the ages of six months and one year. By the age of three years old most children have a “full” set of twenty primary teeth. Primary teeth are important for speech production and development, eating and nutrition, and good self-esteem.
Simple Tooth Extractions
If you are experiencing extreme sensitivity or are suffering from advanced periodontal disease, you may be required to have a tooth extracted. With a simple extraction, the dentist can safely remove the affected tooth without the need for major surgery.
Wisdom Tooth Extractions
Third molars, or “wisdom teeth”, generally make their appearance between the ages of 17 to 25. In most cases, inadequate space in the mouth does not allow the wisdom teeth to erupt properly and become fully functional. While not all wisdom teeth require removal, wisdom teeth extractions are most often performed because of an active problem such as pain, swelling, decay or infection, or as a preventative measure to avoid serious problems in the future.