Composite restorations, otherwise known as “white or tooth-colored fillings” are your first line of defense when removing small amounts of decay, or replacing mercury (or amalgam) restorations. Essentially, the materials used act as super glue in your teeth, strengthening and supporting your tooth structure with the added benefit of being cosmetically pleasing.
Dental inlays are made from a tooth-colored ceramic material and are used as an alternative to silver or composite fillings. Inlays can be used to repair a damaged tooth but require less removal of the tooth structure than a traditional crown. Dental inlays can be used to repair decayed teeth, large or broken fillings and broken or fractured teeth.
A dental onlay is very similar to a dental inlay. The primary difference between the two is that the onlay will replace one or more of the chewing cusps on the tooth. Dental onlays are sometimes referred to as partial crowns.
Two appointments are needed for an inlay or onlay procedure. In the initial appointment Dr. Farmer will take an impression of the tooth and prepare it for the new dental onlay by removing any decay or old filling material. The tooth is then cleaned and shaped for the proper fit of the onlay. On your second visit, Dr. Farmer will bond the new dental inlay or onlay to your tooth and make adjustments for proper bite and comfort.
Once composite restorations (or mercury silver fillings) become larger than the remaining tooth structure, a tooth is weakened and needs a stronger restoration to strengthen and protect it. A crown is a circumferential “helmet” that holds the remaining tooth structure together and protects it from cracking or breaking. In our office, we use ceramic crowns which we bond to your tooth structure and contain no metal. This allows for a very strong, very natural restoration that you may not be able to differentiate from your natural teeth.
Another common reason that a crown may be necessary is if a tooth has developed stress fractures. Cracks and fractures in a tooth travel just like cracks in glass. These cracks can become very painful and, over time, may jeopardize the health and lifespan of the tooth.
A final reason a tooth may need crown coverage is if it has had a root canal in the past. Once a root canal has been performed on a tooth, it may become more brittle over time and need more support and coverage to protect the tooth and your investment.
The process of having a crown made requires two appointments with Dr. Farmer. An impression of your tooth is taken and sent off to a local laboratory so that the crown can be professionally created. During this time, you will have a temporary crown cemented on your tooth. Once your permanent crown is ready, it will be fitted and permanently bonded to your tooth at a following appointment.
Recreating your smile into one that you love can be as simple as placing dental veneers. A veneer is a thin porcelain or zirconia facing that is bonded over your front teeth. There is minimal reduction of natural tooth structure needed to prepare your teeth for the veneers. Often, guests compare veneers to fake finger nails. They are a very thin facing that transforms the color and shape of your teeth. Veneers can be placed on your upper and lower teeth for a complete smile transformation. Veneers are natural-looking and give you the ability to design with us your ideal shape, color, length, and translucency.
Clear Correct® orthodontic trays are often known as invisible braces. They are a series of clear, custom, removable aligners that gradually straighten your teeth as you wear them. Each aligner moves your teeth a little bit at a time. They have no wires or brackets, making them comfortable to wear. They are fabricated with medical grade plastic, have an antibacterial surface, smooth edges, and are custom-fitted to you. They are removable, so you can eat, brush, and floss without difficulty. These are a great treatment option for guests that need flexible appointment scheduling. Most cases can be completed in a year or less.
Implants are designed to provide a foundation for replacement teeth that look, feel and function like natural teeth. Guests with dental implants can smile with confidence knowing their teeth appear natural and that their facial contours will be preserved.
Our office is proud to say that we use the BOOST in-office whitening system. This is a whitening system that does not use a light or laser. It has been suggested that there is more post-bleaching sensitivity from the lights or lasers used in traditional in-office bleaching. The process begins by using a soft material that is placed around your tissue, and then hardened. This creates a protective barrier so that your tissue is not irritated or harmed from the bleach. Next, a topical bleach is applied to all of your teeth in your smile line. This is left on for three twenty-minute intervals. Upon completion of the two bleaching cycles, the protective layer and bleach is removed. You now have a new whiter smile! If you are planning on having your teeth whitened, it is suggested that you take ibuprofen one hour prior to your visit to reduce post bleaching sensitivity. We also have products to help with the reduction of sensitivity.
Another form of whitening uses take-home trays. To make custom-fitted bleach trays, we take impressions of your teeth. A set of trays are made so that you can wear them comfortably, any time of day, with a lower intensity bleach. Bleach each day, twice per day, if possible for up to two weeks.
KOR® Whitening Deep Bleaching System is another whitening option we offer our guests. It is the most effective bleaching option for very darkly stained teeth…even tetracycline stained teeth! It is a combination therapy of one-two in-office visits and custom-made take home bleaching trays. It is safe for teeth and gums, giving you a beautiful, healthy, and natural looking white result with little to no sensitivity during the process. This system rejuvenates and restores your teeth to a more youthful state where they can absorb bleaching factors more quickly and easily. The resultant conditioning easily facilitates effective at home maintenance keeping your level of whiteness permanent while still allowing you to consume coffee, tea, and even red wine!
Our office utilizes a high performance soft tissue laser. It can be used in surgeries to lessen post-operative complications, infections, and guest discomfort which are problems often associated with scalpel incisions or electro-surge during dental surgeries. It can also be used to reduce bacteria and encourage faster healing in deep gingival pockets caused by periodontal disease. Our diode laser can stop an apthous ulcer or herpetic lesion from forming, or if formed, can decrease the healing time and stop the pain immediately. Laser therapy can also be used to make your teeth less sensitive.