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Meriden, CT 06450
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

Facts About Mouthwash

Facts About Mouthwash

Using mouthwash is not a replacement for brushing and flossing, but instead is an addition to your oral care routine that can help you maintain healthy teeth and gums. If you’ve visited the mouthwash aisle at your local drugstore lately, you’ve seen that there is a giant selection of brands and types to choose from. It can be a bit overwhelming if you don’t know what purpose each one serves. Here is a description of the most common types of mouthwashes to help you choose.

Antiseptic
The goal of antiseptic mouthwash is to kill germs and bacteria in your mouth. It can also combat gum disease and persistent bad breath. Most dentists recommend that you discuss using antiseptic mouthwash with them before selecting this type, because they can help you decide if it’s needed for you. It can impact your sense of taste and can stain your teeth, so you want to be sure it’s helpful for you before using it.

Fluoride
The most common kind of mouthwash is fluoride, which utilizes the natural abilities of this mineral to strengthen your tooth enamel and prevent tooth decay and cavities.

Cosmetic
Designed to disguise bad breath, or halitosis, cosmetic mouthwash does not offer protection from problems like tooth decay. It can help keep your teeth clean and help rinse away food particles, but it is mainly for freshening your breath.

Combination
Mouthwash that combines purposes of the product is called combination mouthwash. It is meant to prevent tooth decay, maintain your oral health, and freshen your breath.

Prescription
Sometimes a prescription mouthwash is warranted for patients with gum disease or other types of decay. See your dentist to find out it this type of mouthwash would benefit you.

If you live in the Meriden area and you need a general dentist, contact us today.

Reasons General Dentistry is Important

Reasons General Dentistry is Important

It’s easy to put off a trip to the dentist if you’re not experiencing any pain or noticeable issues. Maybe it’s inconvenient in your busy schedule, maybe you don’t want to spend the money, or maybe you experience anxiety about dental visits. None of these are good enough reasons to forego proper dental care so that you ensure a healthy mouth and attractive smile.

Having regular checkups with your general dentist is important for a variety of reasons. Probably the most beneficial reason is to catch problems early, before they have time to become serious and negatively impact your oral health. Cavities and gum disease are both examples of issues that can wreak havoc in your mouth if left untreated, but if handled quickly they may disappear with as little as a fluoride treatment or change in your hygiene routine. Avoiding treatments like fillings, crowns, or root canals – not to mention the associated costs to your wallet and your schedule – are great reasons to see your dentist every six months!

Another benefit of regular checkups is a brighter, more beautiful smile. Even the best dental hygiene at home can’t reach every bit of plaque or tartar that accumulates on your teeth. Professional cleanings eliminate buildup to give you a more appealing smile, as well as removing harmful and stinky bacteria from your mouth.

Your overall health also reaps the rewards of consistent dental care. Oral problems can impact your general health through things like introducing dangerous bacteria into your body that can spread and cause various health risks. Also, your dentist may notice signs of health issues you might not realize, such as cancers or diseases or nutritional deficiencies.

Make your smile a priority and visit your general dentist regularly. Don’t let excuses get in the way of receiving the rewards dentistry has to offer.

We look forward to seeing you in our Meriden dental office

Crowns and Bridges: When Problems Arise

Crowns and Bridges: When Problems Arise

When you have a tooth or multiple teeth with extensive damage, your dentist may recommend a crown or bridge to restore your smile. Most of the time these restorations provide complete and successful results, but occasionally problems arise.

Tooth decay:
Good hygiene is imperative after a crown or bridge because plaque can build up in the area where the tooth and crown meet. Your crown can’t decay, but your tooth still can. Follow your dentist’s instructions for proper brushing, flossing, and fluoride use.

Gum disease:
Plaque buildup around a crown can cause gum disease called gingivitis, and if untreated advance to periodontitis.

Chipping or breaking:
Crowns and bridges are susceptible to damage like fracturing or chipping. Many crowns are made of porcelain, which can chip or completely fail. Heavy wear or stress such as teeth grinding can cause this type of damage, as well as an accident like hitting your restoration. Small chips may be repaired with composite filling, but larger damage can mean total replacement.

Incorrect color:
When having your crown or bridge made, you can choose from a selection of colors. However, the whitest shade is not advised because it likely won’t match the rest of your smile or it can look fake. Make sure you consider the color carefully or else you’ll be faced with redoing the restoration if you dislike it.

Falling out:
Several problems can cause your crown to fall out. The core may fail so that the interior portion of your crown is unable to provide a strong base for the restoration. Less likely, the cement can fail so that the crown simply needs stronger adhesion. Or, the post crown can dislodge so that you’ll see a large post sticking out of your crown. If your crown falls out, be sure to save it for your dentist in case it can be reinserted.

In most circumstances, these problems with your crown or bridge do not occur and you can enjoy a long lifespan with your restoration. If you do notice any of these issues, schedule an appointment with your dentist to ensure optimum oral health.

We treat patients from Meriden and the surrounding area

Taking Care of Your Smile through General Dentistry

Taking Care of Your Smile through General Dentistry

One of the greatest gifts you can give yourself is taking care of your oral health throughout your life. Practicing a consistent dental hygiene routine and maintaining regular visits to your general dentist are the best ways to increase your chances of a beautiful, healthy smile.

General dentists focus on preventive care and treating minor problems before they have a chance to worsen into serious issues. Even if you regularly brush and floss your teeth, plaque and tartar can be quick to develop. A dentist has the necessary tools and training to remove damaging deposits before they harm your smile. In addition to professional cleanings and examinations, most general dentists fill cavities, perform root canals, whiten teeth, and even offer additional cosmetic dental procedures like dental implants or veneers.

One of the main reasons for routine examinations is to identify various problems. One common issue that you want your general dentist to catch early is gum disease. When it is treated soon after it starts, you are more likely to avoid bone deterioration or tooth loss. The early stage of gum disease is called gingivitis and can be handled by your dentist with simple techniques. If it advances to periodontitis, that’s when bone or tooth loss become a possibility and more invasive procedures like scaling or root planing may be required.

Once you make your dental appointment, which is typically recommended every six months, make sure you keep your scheduled visit. Many patients fall victim to scheduling appointments and then cancelling, not realizing how important seeing your general dentist can be. If you have dental insurance, you can even use your dental benefits for examinations and treatments. This office accepts Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Louisiana, MetLife, and Cigna.

Choose a qualified general dentist and establish a long-term relationship now, so that you can enjoy your healthy and appealing smile for years to come.

If you live in the Meriden area contact us today

Types of Dental Crown and Bridge Materials Available

Types of Dental Crown and Bridge Materials Available

Restorative dentistry has made incredible advancements in the technology of restorative dental materials, and there are more options than ever today for your dental crown or dental bridge. Zirconium and porcelain have proven to provide lasting strength and durability, exhibiting the most natural cosmetic dental restorations available today. Each tooth in each mouth is different, however, and in some cases, resin composite or metal alloy might be the choice recommended for you.

Metals are a common choice for dental crowns and dental bridges. Gold or palladium alloys, as well as chromium or nickel (base-metal) alloys can be excellent choices. Metal alloy crowns show the least “wear down” over years of use. They almost never chip, break or wear down opposing teeth. The primary complaint about metal alloy materials is that their color is metallic and thereby unnatural. They will not blend with the surrounding teeth, and as such, they are chosen more for back molars where they won’t draw attention.

Dental composite/resin materials are a popular choice that can be made to blend with the surrounding teeth, but they’ve been shown to wear down over time and are more prone to fractures and breaking than other materials.

Porcelain can be fused to metal to form a natural-appearing crown or bridge, and because of their appearance, are a good choice for front or back teeth. Over time, however, discoloration can appear along the gum line as the porcelain wears away, leaving a dark, unsightly line. The porcelain can be fused to zirconium, however, which eliminates the dark line and is a good cosmetic choice for front teeth.

Crowns and bridges can also be made from all-porcelain or all-ceramic materials. These materials are the best choice for natural-looking teeth of the types of dental crown and dental bridge materials available in restorative dentistry today. Because they contain no metal, they are excellent choices for patients with metal allergies. They tend to be weaker and less durable than materials containing metals, however.

Talk to your cosmetic dentist today with any questions you have regarding what type of dental crown or bridge material is best for your smile needs.

We treat patients from Meriden and the surrounding area