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Meriden, CT 06450
Myths and Facts about Porcelain Veneers

Myths and Facts about Porcelain Veneers

If you’re unhappy with your smile, porcelain veneers might be a solution that you’re considering. These thin shells are placed over your teeth to make them whiter, straighter, and more appealing. Here are some facts that address some of the myths about porcelain veneers to help you make a better choice.

Myth: Large portions of your teeth must be removed when applying veneers.

Fact: Only a very small layer of your teeth needs to be removed so that veneers can be bonded onto them. The amount removed is usually as thin as a contact lens.

Myth: Porcelain veneers do not look natural.

Fact: When properly attached to your teeth, veneers become part of your mouth structure and are virtually indistinguishable from your real teeth. They also feel like your natural teeth.

Myth: Getting veneers is very painful.

Fact: Preparing your teeth for veneers is not painful because the dentist usually uses a topical anesthetic to relieve any discomfort. Having a model made of your mouth and then having the veneers bonded to your teeth are painless steps in the process. You might experience increased sensitivity to hot and cold foods initially after getting veneers, but that sensation dissipates within a few days.

Myth: Veneers are so expensive that only the rich can afford them.

Fact: Many dentists offer porcelain veneers, so the costs have decreased as popularity has increased. Dental veneers are not just for celebrities.

We look forward to seeing you in our Meriden dental office

A History of Cosmetic Dentistry

A History of Cosmetic Dentistry

The desire for a better looking and better functioning smile has been around since ancient times. As early as 3000 BC, there is evidence that people used sticks to clean their teeth. Early toothbrushes were made of animal hair in the late 15th century.

The earliest forms of cosmetic dentistry are believed to be dentures made from ivory and bone by the Etruscans around 700 BCE. Other dentures were made from animal or even human teeth taken from corpses. Near 200 CE, the Etruscans had moved on to using gold to perform the functions of a dental crown or bridge.

Ancient Egyptians made a whitening toothpaste of vinegar and ground pumice stone, while the Romans utilized the ammonia from urine in their toothpastes, a practice that existed in some form into the 1700s.

Dental implants of human teeth were used in Europe in the 1700s for replacement teeth, but the practice was rejected due to repeated failures. Over the next hundred years, metal was used – and was also subsequently rejected.

The end of the 18th century and the entre 19th century showed great strides in cosmetic dentistry, particularly in the field of prosthetic dentistry, with the success of the porcelain denture. Molds were made of existing mouths with plaster, allowing dentists to provide the greatest denture fit and comfort available to patients thus far.

In the 1840s, the first rubberized material used as a base for dentures was invented, called Vulcanite. The first dental lab created specifically to produce prosthetic dental appliances was established in the 1850s. Porcelain dental crowns gave way to porcelain fused to metal crowns in the 1950s, and Vulcanite gave way to acrylic in the early 20th century, materials we still use today.

Your cosmetic dentist in Meriden is a skilled professional whose techniques have been practiced and refined by those dentists who came before for thousands of years. Today, we are at the pinnacle of the knowledge and expertise of trained cosmetic dentists and with the variety of successful methods and materials that will work for any cosmetic need.

If you live in the Meriden area contact us today

Do Your Wisdom Teeth Need to be Removed?

Do Your Wisdom Teeth Need to be Removed?

While not everyone needs to have their wisdom teeth removed, third molars are the most likely to cause you serious dental problems. Monitoring the health of your wisdom teeth, with cooperation from your dental professional, is the best way to avoid serious complications before they arise. The following are indications you may need to consider oral surgery to extract trouble wisdom teeth:

  • Wisdom tooth pain could be a result of infection and decay. Third molars are the most difficult to clean, due to their position at the back of the mouth, making them a prime breeding ground for plaque and bacteria which then attacks the tooth.
  • If you have a small mouth, the emergence of wisdom teeth can cause crowding of existing teeth. As wisdom teeth appear they may begin to force your other teeth out of the way, causing misalignment. Removing the third molars makes room for existing teeth.
  • Wisdom teeth that do not emerge properly can cause irritation to the gums that may lead to gum infections and immense discomfort.
  • When wisdom teeth start to emerge at awkward angles, it can cause them to become impacted. Third molars that get stuck in the gums sometimes create pockets that harbor bacteria and debris that cause serious decay and infection, as well as bad breath issues.

While not all wisdom teeth require extraction, there are many complications associated with third molars that indicate removing them would be in your best interest. By monitoring the emergence and ongoing health of your wisdom teeth, you can avoid serious dental problems. Consult with your dentist about the condition of your wisdom teeth to ensure a lifetime of healthy teeth.

Schedule your appointment at our Meriden dental office

What Your Family Dentist Has to Say About Your Child’s Pacifier

What Your Family Dentist Has to Say About Your Child’s Pacifier

Your family dentist knows that your child’s pacifier serves an important purpose. It soothes and comforts your child during difficult or stressful events. During the time of infancy, pacifiers are common and valued. Extended use of the pacifier during the development of the teeth, however, can lead to unwanted changes to your toddler’s mouth.

Sucking too hard on a pacifier, just like sucking too long on fingers or a thumb, can have serious consequences to a child’s teeth and even to the shape of the child’s face. Your family dentist will tell you that you should take away your child’s pacifier by the age of two years, preferably by the end of the first year. Failure to stop the use of a pacifier can lead to extended orthodontic care in the future.

Your family dentist can show you research that indicates that pacifier use beyond the second year is linked with crossbites, open bites, misaligned bites, a narrowed jaw, tongue thrust and malformed palate. It is also associated with an increased risk of a middle ear infection.

If your infant is using a pacifier, follow these guidelines:

  • Clean the pacifiers regularly and properly to prevent bacterial growth.
  • Discard and replace pacifiers that exhibit any signs of discoloration or cracking.
  • Clean any new pacifiers prior to giving them to your baby.
  • Make pacifiers available only during specific times, such as at naptime or bedtime.
  • Purchase pacifiers specifically recommended by orthodontists for minimal damage to the mouth.
  • Never allow your baby to “wear” the pacifier by tying it around his or her neck. This is dangerous. Pacifier clips can allow you to clip the pacifier to your baby’s clothing with a short, safe length of material.

Your family dentist will have important tips for you when you begin to wean your child away from pacifiers. Don’t let this habit extend beyond being useful to becoming harmful.

Schedule your appointment at our Meriden dental office

What Really Happens When You Get a Filling

What Really Happens When You Get a Filling

You’re sitting in your dentist’s chair for your checkup, and you hear the dreaded words that you have a cavity. Is it really a cause for panic? Modern advances in equipment and methods may surprise you about what really happens when you get a filling. Let’s learn what to expect if you need this procedure.

The first thing you and your dentist will discuss is the type of filling that is best for you. One choice is an amalgam filling. It is known for its durability, but contains a small amount of mercury which raises concerns among some patients. Another option is a resin composite filling, which is a newer material that contains more plastics. Many patients like this option because its white color is less noticeable in your mouth, but it lasts only about half as long as an amalgam filling.

The first step of the process is numbing the area, unless the cavity is very small and it’s unnecessary. First, the dentist will rub a topical numbing agent on the area, and will give you an injection after it takes effect. Many patients don’t even feel the injection after the topical numbing.

Next, the dentist will separate the area being worked on from the rest of your mouth using a rubber dam or a bite block. Once your mouth is ready, your tooth will be drilled and the decay will be removed.

The actual filling will be placed after the decay is gone. If you are receiving an amalgam filling, the hole will be filled with the metals. It will be pushed down to ensure all of the space is full, and then any overflow will be removed to make the tooth smooth. If you are getting a composite filling instead, the dentist will put some blue acid in the hole to create small holes for bonding the material. The acid is then rinsed, and a bonding agent is applied. Then the composite material will be added. A blue light will be used to harden and strengthen the material. Finally, the filling will be filed to make it smooth.

Dental fillings dentist in Meriden

Dental Implant FAQ

Dental Implant FAQ

Dental implants are artificial teeth that mimic your natural tooth roots and are placed directly into your jawbone to provide optimal support for dental crowns, bridges and removable prosthodontics such as dentures. If you are considering dental implant therapy, please use the following guide to answer some of your questions.

  • Am I a candidate for dental implant treatment? Dental implants can be used in healthy patients whose jawbones have completed growing and who have sufficient quality and quantity of jawbone to have a healthy implantation.
  • Is dental implant treatment safe? Dentists agree that in healthy patients who are good candidates for the procedure, dental implants are low-risk.
  • Will I be in a lot of pain during dental implant surgery? Dental implant surgery is typically performed as an outpatient procedure in your dentist’s office under local anesthesia.
  • Does it take a long time to undergo the procedure? Treatment can generally be performed in under an hour, depending on the number of implants required.
  • Is recovery painful? Healing from dental implant surgery is typically quick and easy for most healthy people. Any lingering pain can be treated with over-the-counter pain relievers.
  • When will I get my new teeth? Implants must fuse to the bone in a process called ossification, a process that can take up to six months. In most cases, temporary teeth will be in place during this time period.
  • How do I care for my dental implants? You will take care of your implants in the same way you would care for your natural teeth. Brush twice a day or after meals, especially before bedtime. Floss daily and continue to maintain regular dental appointments for checkups and preventative care.
  • How long do dental implants last? Dental implants can last for twenty or thirty years if you care for them properly.

Our dental office is located in Meriden