More people than ever are looking for tooth whitening options to make their smile look whiter and brighter, and to improve their overall appearance. With so many whitening options, there’s bound to be one right for you.
There are two types of stains that cause discoloration. The first are intrinsic stains that develop inside the tooth enamel. Intrinsic tooth stains can be due to a mother’s antibiotic use while pregnant or childhood exposure to fluoride. Extrinsic tooth stains are the result of drinking beverages such as tea and coffee, age, the development of plaque and tartar or the use of tobacco.
Before begining a home or in-office treatment, it is a good idea to see a dentist to determine the type of stain you have and assist in deciding which option treatment would work best for you.
The options include:
1. Whitening at Home — There are several options in this category of whitening. You can choose over-the-counter toothpastes, mouthwashes, white strips or paint-on gels. Gel trays are popular, but may require a dentist to take an impression of your teeth and to help you select a whitening kit. The expense is less than an office whitening visit.
2. Whitening at the Office — This option may include one to three visits depending on the whitening procedure that you and the dentist choose. It is usually more expensive than the over-the-counter whitening products, but can be more effective. Speak with Dr. Jaleel to find out which options are available at our clinic.
Baking soda is a common household product that has many uses around the home, from eliminating smells to cleaning carpets. Now, baking soda can be found in many toothpastes and teeth-whitening products. Using it to remove stains from teeth is common practice. But does baking soda whiten teeth, really? It does an excellent job at removing surface stains, but you should proceed with caution to prevent damage to your enamel.
Home Remedies to Whiten Teeth
How can a simple mixture of equal parts baking soda and water whiten teeth? Baking soda, also known as sodium bicarbonate, is composed of a chemical compound that makes it a great mild abrasive. It is this same abrasiveness that effectively removes surface stains from your teeth and make them appear whiter. However, if your goal is to remove deeper, older stains, then baking soda will not be as effective. You will need to see your dentist or use a product that was specifically created for whitening teeth.
If you’re considering using this method to help whiten your teeth, you need to be aware of possible side effects. With continual use, you could cause damage to the enamel that coats your teeth. In addition, baking soda doesn’t contain fluoride, which helps strengthen teeth and prevent dental cavities, so you will still need to use regular toothpaste. If you have braces that contain orthodontic glue or use a permanent retainer, don’t brush with baking soda. It will soften the glue.
Who doesn’t want a beautiful, bright smile free of stains? Getting that smile shouldn’t be at the expense of the health of your teeth. For a safer alternatives, you should seek teeth whitening services from your dentist. Learn more about tooth whitening, contact us today at 613.829.6868.
If at your most recent visit to the dentist, Dr. Jaleel gave you crummy news – another cavity – you have plenty to keep you motivated: The number of cavities and the need for fillings has decreased as people have become better able to care for their teeth. But they still happen. Fortunately, there are more types of fillings for teeth today than ever before.
Fillings vary in complexity and material. Some are direct fillings, placed “directly” in a cavity, although others are indirect, wherein an impression of the tooth is taken and a custom filling is created to fit around it. If your dentist suggests a tooth restoration, knowing what’s available can help you make the best choice for your mouth.
You might think of amalgam fillings for teeth as a classic option. Dentists have been using this type of filling for more than 150 years. As the name suggests, amalgam fillings are made up of a mixture of metals. They typically contain about 50 percent mercury, along with tin, copper, silver or zinc. Compared to other types, amalgam fillings have a few things going for them: They are the least pricey option, and they’re also very strong and long-lasting.
Amalgam fillings aren’t without drawbacks, though. They’re silver in color to start and tend to become darker with time, meaning they are a fairly conspicuous item when you open your mouth. And although the FDA has determined that the level of mercury in the filling is safe for people over the age of six, you might prefer not to have a filling made from this material.
A composite tooth filling, typically made of powdered glass and acrylic resin, offers a few advantages over an amalgam filling. For one, the filling can be shaded to match the color of a person’s existing teeth, making it much less visible. As more people want natural-looking smiles, composite fillings have become increasingly popular.
Nonetheless, this type of filling isn’t always the right pick. The material it’s made from is less durable than a mix of metals, such as in amalgam. Therefore, the useful life of a composite filing isn’t always as long as other options. It’s perfect as a small filling, and best suited for teeth that experience a moderate amount of pressure when chewing, compared to teeth that handle the bulk of your chewing action.
When it comes to dental fillings, you can do much worse than gold. It’s one of the most durable and long-lasting options, it can remain effective for more than two decades. Of course, that durability comes at a price, as gold fillings are among the most expensive. They’re usually indirect fillings, as well, so you’ll need to spend more time in a dentist’s chair to receive one.
Porcelain fillings are similar to gold. They are a form of indirect filling, usually require more than one visit to the dentist and tend to be pricey. However, they’re also different from gold fillings in a few important way: On the one hand, they are much more fragile. On the other, they look like actual teeth and can help you maintain a natural appearance.
Resin or Glass Ionomer
Kids get cavities, too, and need to have those cavities filled just like their parents – even if they’re on the baby teeth. Resin or glass ionomer fillings are often used on the primary teeth or to fill in small areas of decay, as they tend to be very delicate and take considerable wear and tear. When used on a permanent tooth, this type of filling is usually placed in a spot that isn’t subject to extreme pressure or chewing action.
Although you have multiple options when arranging a filling, no filling is objectively better than another. Maintain a good personal routine by brushing at least twice a day, flossing daily and seeing your dentist twice a year.
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Trendy clothes, stylish shoes and the latest celebrity-inspired haircut all make powerful statements when it comes to taking pride in your appearance. So does a pearly white smile. But smiles sometimes need some dental repairs before you’re comfortable showcasing them. A porcelain crown is one option that can spruce up a not-so-healthy tooth and restore your confidence.
Crowns serve multiple purposes. It’s a device used to cover a tooth that’s badly formed or discolored. A crown can also be used to prevent a weakened tooth from breaking or to help repair a broken tooth. It even acts as a cover for dental implants. Crowns come in four different styles:
- Ceramic (porcelain-based)
- Porcelain fused to metal
- Gold alloys
- Base metal alloys
Preparing the Tooth
If you need a crown, you may also need endodontic or root canal treatment on the tooth. Not everyone who needs a crown will also need a root canal. Root canal treatment is required if the cavity is deep and reaches the pulp of the tooth, where the nerve of the tooth is located.
Before placing a crown, if not much of the tooth is remaining, Dr. Jaleel may need to build up a foundation to support it. A foundation is needed if large areas of the tooth are decayed, damaged or missing. If you are receiving the crown after root canal treatment, Dr. Jaleel may insert a post-and-core foundation.
To place a crown, Dr. Jaleel will file down the tooth to make room for the crown. After filing down the tooth, there are two ways to make a permanent crown. Most crowns require two visits to the dentist. You receive a temporary crown at the first visit and wear it while your permanent crown is made.
Next, Dr. Jaleel will first make an impression of your teeth. Our team will also take an impression of the teeth above or below the tooth that will receive the crown. The purpose is to make sure the crown will fit into your normal bite.
The impressions are sent to the lab, where the crown is made. During that time, you will have a temporary crown placed. These crowns are not meant to last for a long time. In some cases, however, a temporary crown can stay in place for a year or longer. If it needs to last longer, a lab-made plastic crown is best.
At a second visit, Dr. Jaleel will remove the temporary crown and test the permanent one. Sometimes crowns need more polishing or glazing or some other adjustment before they are placed. Once the crown is ready, it is permanently cemented on your tooth.
You shouldn’t feel any discomfort or sensitivity after a crown is placed. However, if your tooth has not had a root canal, it will still contain the nerve. You may therefore have some temporary sensitivity to cold. If you notice pain or sensitivity when you bite down, contact Dr. Jaleel. Usually this means that the crown is too high. When you bite, you are hitting the crown first. The crown needs to be adjusted. This can be done easily.
If the crown does not fit well over the prepared tooth, it’s possible that the cement will wash out from under the crown. However, the crown may not fall out right away. Under these conditions, bacteria will leak in and cause decay. If your crown seems loose when you chew, or if you have an unusual odor around the tooth, discuss this with Dr. Jaleel, and our dental team will check your crowns at your regular visits.
If you are in no discomfort and your appearance is not affected, don’t try to put the crown back in place yourself. If you do need to put it back in your mouth, clean it well on the inside. Use a toothpick to loosen and remove any cement or debris that is stuck to the crown. A wet cotton swab can finish the cleaning. You can replace the crown temporarily using denture adhesive or temporary cement. This is sold in many pharmacies. Contact Dr. Jaleel right away and try to schedule a visit for the next day.
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What are Dentures?
Dentures are replacements for missing teeth that can be taken out and put back into your mouth. While dentures take some getting used to, and will never feel exactly the same as one’s natural teeth, today’s dentures are natural looking and more comfortable than ever.
There are two main types of dentures: full and partial. Dr. Jaleel, your Ottawa Nepean dentist will help you choose the type of denture that’s best for you based on whether some or all of your teeth are going to be replaced and the cost involved.
How do Dentures Work?
With full dentures, a flesh-colored acrylic base fits over your gums. The base of the upper denture covers the palate (the roof of your mouth), while that of the lower denture is shaped like a horseshoe to accommodate your tongue.
Dentures are custom-made in a dental laboratory from impressions taken of your mouth. Dr. Jaleel will determine which of the three types of dentures described below is best for you.
Immediate Full Denture vs Partial Dentures
- Conventional Full Denture
A conventional full denture is placed in your mouth after any remaining teeth are removed and tissues have healed. Healing may take several months, during which time you are without teeth.
- Immediate Full Denture
An immediate full denture is inserted immediately after the remaining teeth are removed. While immediate dentures offer the benefit of never having to be without your teeth, they must be relined several months after being inserted. The reason is that the bone supporting the teeth reshapes as it heals, causing the denture to become loose.
- Partial Denture
A partial denture rests on a metal framework that attaches to your natural teeth. Sometimes crowns are placed on some of your natural teeth and serve as anchors for the denture. Partial dentures offer a removable alternative to bridges.
How Long Before I Get Used to My Dentures?
New dentures may feel awkward or uncomfortable for the first few weeks or even months. Eating and speaking with dentures might take a little practice. A bulky or loose feeling is not uncommon, while the muscles of your cheeks and tongue learn to hold your dentures in place. Excessive saliva flow, a feeling that the tongue does not have adequate room, and minor irritation or soreness are also not unusual. If you experience irritation, contact our clinic and we can set up an appointment with Dr. Jaleel right away.
How Long do Dentures Last?
Over a period of time, your denture will need to be relined, remade, or rebased due to normal wear. Rebasing means making a new base while keeping the existing denture teeth. Also, as you age, your mouth naturally changes. These changes cause your dentures to loosen, making chewing difficult and irritating your gums. At a minimum, you should see Dr. Jaleel twice a year for a checkup.
Here are tips for caring for your dentures:
- When handling your dentures, stand over a folded towel or basin of water. Dentures are delicate and may break if dropped.
- Don’t let your dentures dry out. Place them in a denture cleanser soaking solution or in plain water when you’re not wearing them. Never use hot water, which can cause them to warp.
- Brushing your dentures daily will remove food deposits and plaque, and help prevent them from becoming stained. An ultrasonic cleaner may be used to care for your dentures, but it does not replace a thorough daily brushing.
- Brush your gums, tongue and palate every morning with a soft-bristled brush before you insert your dentures. This stimulates circulation in your tissues and helps remove plaque.
- See Dr. Jaleel if your dentures break, chip, crack or become loose. Don’t be tempted to adjust them yourself — this can damage them beyond repair.
How to Clean Off Dentures
In addition to your regular daily brushing, it’s necessary to use a deep-cleaning solution periodically to soak off food deposits from the denture. These solutions typically come in the form of effervescent tablets, which are specifically formulated to clean dentures.
Avoid using abrasive materials such as brushes with stiff bristles, whitening toothpastes or products containing bleach, because these can damage the dentures. Also keep in mind that hot or boiling water can warp your dentures, and soaking items that have metal fittings in any solution containing chlorine can cause the metal to tarnish.
After soaking, check the inside of the denture for any remaining food particles, and brush or scrub using a soft-bristled toothbrush whose shape is conducive to denture care.
Ultimately, ensure that you rinse the dentures exceptionally well afterward; even the gentlest cleansing solution can contain chemicals that are harmful to your mouth’s natural tissues.
Just because you wear dentures doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the pleasure of freshly-brushed teeth. Complete your denture-cleaning procedure with a thorough brushing of your gums using a soft-bristled toothbrush and everyday, fluoridated toothpaste.
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What are Wisdom Teeth?
Wisdom teeth are the last molars on each side of the jaws. They are also the last teeth to emerge, or erupt, usually when a person is between 16 and 20.
Since wisdom teeth are the last permanent teeth to come in, or erupt, there is often not enough room left in your mouth to accommodate them. This can lead to wisdom teeth that are impacted, teeth that are trapped beneath the gum tissue by other teeth or bone. If teeth are impacted, swelling and tenderness may occur.
Wisdom teeth that only partially emerge or come in crooked can also lead to painful crowding and disease. Since teeth removed before age 20 have less developed roots and fewer complications. Dr. Jaleel recommends that people between 16 and 19 have their wisdom teeth evaluated to see if they need to be removed. Wisdom teeth are the last four of your 32 teeth to erupt. These teeth generally appear between the ages of 17 to 25. When one of these teeth doesn’t have enough room to come in normally, it is considered impacted. Teeth may become twisted, tilted, or displaced as they try to emerge.
Impacted wisdom teeth do not always show symptoms, meaning you could have impacted teeth and not even realize it. If symptoms do arise, it is usually the result of the gum on top of the tooth becoming infected or swollen. Symptoms may include pain, swollen and bleeding gums, swelling around the jaw, bad breath, headache or jaw ache, and an unpleasant taste when eating. Some people experience stiffness of the jaw or swollen lymph nodes in the neck.
Annual dental appointments and x-rays can catch impacted teeth early before they start to show symptoms. Dr. Jaleel will most likely recommend surgery to remove the impacted teeth.
How are Wisdom Teeth Removed?
During the procedure
Your doctor or oral surgeon may use one of three types of anesthesia (Local anesthesia, Sedation anesthesia, General anesthesia). The appropriate anesthesia for you depends on the expected complexity of the wisdom tooth extraction and your own comfort level. Your options include:
During wisdom tooth extraction, Dr. Jaleel will:
- Makes an incision in the gum, creating flaps to expose the tooth and bone
- Removes any bone that blocks access to the tooth
- Divides the tooth into sections if it’s easier to remove in pieces
- Removes the tooth
- Cleans the site of the removed tooth of any debris from the tooth or bone
- Stitches the wound closed to promote healing, though this isn’t always necessary
- Places gauze over the extraction site to control bleeding and to help a blood clot form
After the procedure
If you receive sedation anesthesia or general anesthesia, you’re taken to a recovery room after the procedure. If you have local anesthesia, your brief recovery time is likely in the dental chair.
As you heal from your surgery, follow our instructions on:
- Activity. After your surgery, plan to rest for the remainder of the day. Resume normal activities the next day, but for at least a week, avoid strenuous activity that might result in dislodging the blood clot from the socket.
- Beverages. Drink lots of water after the surgery. Don’t drink alcoholic, caffeinated, carbonated or hot beverages in the first 24 hours. Don’t drink with a straw for at least a week because the sucking action can dislodge the blood clot from the socket.
- Food. Eat only soft foods, such as yogurt or applesauce, for the first 24 hours. Start eating semisoft foods when you can tolerate them. Avoid hard, chewy, hot or spicy foods that might get stuck in the socket or irritate the wound.
- Pain management. You may be able to manage pain with a prescription pain medication — given by your doctor or oral surgeon — or an over-the-counter pain reliever, such as acetaminophen (Tylenol, others). Holding a cold pack against your jaw also may relieve pain.
- Bleeding. Some oozing of blood may occur the first day after wisdom tooth removal. Try to avoid excessive spitting so that you don’t dislodge the blood clot from the socket. Replace gauze over the extraction site as directed by your dentist or oral surgeon.
- Swelling and bruising. Swelling and bruising of your cheeks usually improves in two or three days. Use an ice pack as directed by your dentist or surgeon.
- Cleaning your mouth. Don’t brush your teeth, rinse your mouth, spit or use a mouthwash during the first 24 hours after the surgery. After that time, gently rinse your mouth with warm salt water every two hours and after meals for a week after your surgery. Mix 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 milliliters) of table salt in 8 ounces (237 milliliters) of water. After the first 24 hours, resume brushing your teeth, being particularly gentle near the surgical wound to avoid disrupting any stitches.
- Tobacco use. If you smoke, don’t do so for at least 24 hours after surgery — and wait longer than that if possible. If you chew tobacco, don’t use it for at least a week. Using tobacco products after oral surgery can delay healing and increase the risk of complications.
- Stitches. You may have stitches that dissolve within a few weeks or no stitches at all. If your stitches need to be removed, schedule an appointment to have them taken out.
Braces aren’t just for awkward teens with brightly colored spacers anymore. Many patients at Dr. Jaleel’s Ottawa clinic are over the age of 18. As more adults turn to braces to straighten their teeth, they’re proving that it’s never too late to fine-tune your smile. Dr. Jaleel has been practicing dentistry and orthodontics for over 20 years now. Over the years, she has seen many people smile brighten after getting braces. Here are just a few great reasons why dental braces for adults are a wise choice.
Set Your Teeth Straight
What don’t you like about your smile? Quite often, braces are not just for aesthetics. Crowded and crooked teeth are more difficult to brush and floss, which could cause plaque buildup and lead to other problems, such as cavities or gum disease. An underbite or overbite can even make chewing uncomfortable. Whether your teeth are misaligned or slightly less than perfect, braces can correct the issue, although dental braces for adults may need to be applied longer than for children or teenagers. The time required varies depending on the condition of your teeth, but the average patient has braces for 18–30 months. No matter your reason for needing braces, the results are well worth the wait.
You Have Options
You don’t have to get traditional metal braces, either. There are many more inconspicuous options for braces available today, such as clear braces, lingual braces and clear aligners, that will allow you to straighten your teeth undercover. Ceramic or clear braces are made from a composite that blends with the color of your teeth, while lingual braces are completely hidden because they’re attached behind the teeth. Clear aligners, such as Invisalign, are custom-fit to your teeth. Choose the look and type of braces that will work best for you.
Benefits of Clear Braces
The benefits of clear braces became evident as growing numbers of adult patients began to pursue care. Adults were now able to improve the appearance and function of their smile without attaching the stigma of a metal mouth. These new aligners could be removed for eating meals and dental hygiene home care; afterward, they could be placed back in the mouth to continue tooth movement. The result of this process was two-fold: First, patients gained confidence from teeth that looked better; second, oral health was improved through properly aligned teeth.
Straighter teeth are healthier in form and function. Bacteria, plaque acids and impacted food particals are the contributing factors to dental decay and gum disease. Teeth that are in alignment gather less plaque simply because they are easier to clean with proper brushing and flossing techniques. The gums fit the teeth more snugly when the teeth do not overlap, leading to a decreased risk of triggers for the inflammatory process that results in periodontal disease. Periodontal disease has been proven to contribute to other systemic illnesses, so straighter teeth not only contribute to a healthy mouth but can contribute to a healthier body.
Another of the benefits of clear braces is a decrease in the traumatic wear that can result from teeth that do not fit together properly. Teeth are like gears inside a machine: If the gears do not align properly, they will wear at an improper rate, resulting in a breakdown of the machine. Teeth can chip, break, or wear at the gumline (a process termed abfraction). Using clear braces to align adult teeth can prevent patients from the need to invest significant amounts of money in restorations. Properly aligned teeth can also decrease the stress placed on the jaw joint; crowded, misaligned teeth place unnatural stress on the jaw.
Clear Braces: Retaining Teeth for Life
The ultimate goal of dental care providers is to retain each patient’s dentition for life. The benefits of clear braces extend far beyond a pretty smile. Clear braces offer an opportunity to straighten teeth while raising the patient’s confidence level in daily life. Although not every patient is a candidate for invisible braces, the products do provide a large percentage of individuals with improved oral health. As companies improve orthodontic techniques used in clear braces, and as new companies emerge, dental professionals will continue to learn about aligning teeth — and that gives us all a reason to smile!
Boost Your Confidence
Many adults are unhappy with the way their teeth look and will avoid smiling or shy away from conversations as a result, which can affect how they present themselves in social and professional situations. Stick through the tooth-straightening process with your braces, and in time you’ll get the smile that you’ve always wanted.
For the healthiest mouth possible, be sure to brush twice daily with a toothpaste that fights germs and prevents gingivitis, and follow Dr. Jaleel’s instructions on proper care for your braces. Keep in mind, however, that whitening toothpastes are not recommended while you wear braces since the toothpaste cannot reach under your brackets and could result in stains in the areas where the brackets were when it’s finally time for the braces to come off.
There will soon be no need to hide your smile anymore once you have a reason and the confidence to show it off. If you’re thinking about straightening your teeth, set up an appointment to talk to Dr. Jaleel about the possibility of braces!
Dental implants are a popular and permanent way to improve the stability of your mouth. If you have missing teeth, or wear removable dentures, they can offer a way for you to maintain a stable, strong and long-lasting smile.
These alternatives to your natural tooth root are made of titanium, a metal that fuses with your jaw bone. When natural teeth are lost, your natural jaw bone can weaken, diminishing your ability to chew and change the form of you face and smile. If you are struggling to chew your favorite foods, or just plain embarrassed by your mouth’s appearance, implants may be your smile-saver.
How It Works
Dental implants are anchors that are surgically placed in your jaw. Titanium accompanies a few other materials to make up this anchor, and are safe to the body; your own bone will grow and join together to support the implant. After the proper waiting time – usually three to six months – the implant is ready for the permanent tooth replacement or prosthetic to be placed on the anchor.
Single tooth loss is one reason to consider an implant, but even total tooth loss can be successfully restored with implants. As explained by the American Dental Association (ADA), there are three basic steps for implant placement:
- Surgical placement of the implant by a qualified dental professional.
- Healing time for “osseointegration,” allowing the bone to grow around the implant.
- Placing of the artificial tooth or teeth.
In most cases, the total integration of bone is necessary before a permanent restoration can be installed. In rare cases, an implant can be “loaded” with a restoration immediately after surgery. If more healing time is needed, your dentist will fabricate a temporary replacement until the final restoration can be placed.
Are Dental Implants Right for You?
Dental implants have been used in the U.S. for decades and have been improved and perfected over the years. Currently, according to the American Academy of Implant Dentistry (AAID), 500,000 American adults undergo implant therapy of some form every year. The procedure has proved to have a 98-percent success rate if proper placement procedures and oral hygiene regimens are followed. Are you a candidate for an implant? The answer in most cases is yes, with some caveats.
There are many things to consider before seeking treatment, but the two at the forefront are your medical history and the costs involved. Patients who suffer from chronic illnesses like leukemia and diabetes are not good candidates, as these conditions inhibit the body’s ability to heal. Patients who have been treated with bisphosphonates (usually found in chemotherapy drugs), as well as popular bone-building drugs like Fosamax and Boniva are carefully scrutinized as well. Additionally, people who smoke have diminished mouth health and may need to be counseled in a smoking cessation program prior to an implant.
Your dental history focuses on the health and thickness of the jawbone, and the number of implants a practice would need to restore your smile. Another important factor is your oral hygiene habits. In order for the implant to be a success, proper brushing and flossing – using products such as Colgate Total Deep Clean Toothpaste– is vital for the implant to last a lifetime. Without proper care, the implant can become infected and fail. Dr. Jaleel will instruct you on proper care and the specific dental aides appropriate for use around the implant.
Dental Implant Procedure and Costs
Due to the nature of the procedure, there are a series of steps you should take. The first is to seek care from a dentist who specializes in implant placement. Your general dentist can refer you to these specialists, who usually practice oral surgery or periodontology.
Once you’ve chosen a specialist, he or she will examine you and run diagnostic tests to assess what needs to be done before placing the implant. Depending on the extent of your tooth loss, how long they’ve been out and which jaw (upper or lower) they were in will determine the tests required. They may include:
- Full mouth X-rays and computer tomography or CT scan
- Extractions of failing teeth
- Bone grafts or sinus lifts
- Temporary teeth replacements or prosthetics
A single implant placement typically costs between $1000 to $3000, but this can increase if multiple teeth are involved and other surgical procedures are needed. Keep in mind this cost does not include the final restoration crowns, bridges or dentures, which are done by a general or cosmetic dentist.
Dental implants are a sustainable replacement for missing teeth. They can also serve as anchors for partial and full dentures that have become loose or ill-fitting. In either case, they allow you to restore your smile to its natural and fully functional condition. Of course, they are not for everyone, but more and more adults are pursuing this dental procedure to restore their healthy, confident smile.
Depending on the condition of your mouth at any one time, your Ottawa dentist, Dr. Jaleel, performs several different types of procedures. Although teeth cleanings, cavity fillings and bondings comprise some of the routine sessions, more involved procedures are now common and easy to complete. In addition to root canals and wisdom tooth extractions, dental crowns are often needed as well, and come in more than one form. Before differentiating between the different types of dental crowns, consider the functions they serve.
A dental crown is a fixed prosthetic object that is cemented onto a tooth. Only a dentist like Dr. Jaleel can remove it once it’s in place. The main purpose of a crown is to cover a damaged tooth, but it also strengthens it, improving its overall appearance and alignment in the mouth.
Crowns are made by taking an impression of the tooth or teeth they’ll be covering. Before this impression is created, Dr. Jaleel must first reduce your tooth’s size so that the crown fits properly. Dr. Jaleel may also place a temporary crown while the permanent one is being made.
Types of Dental Crowns
There are four different types of dental crowns.
- Ceramic — These are used for restoring front teeth, and are popular in this area for their ability to blend with your natural tooth color. The crown is made of a porcelain-based material.
- Porcelain-fused to metal – This crown provides a stronger bond than regular porcelain because it is connected to a metal structure. It’s also extremely durable.
- Gold alloys – This crown is a mix of gold, copper and other metals. In addition to providing a strong bond to the tooth, it doesn’t fracture, nor does it wear away the tooth itself.
- Base metal alloys – This crown is made up of non-noble metals that are highly resistant to corrosion, and make for a very strong crown. It also requires the least amount of healthy tooth to be removed prior to fitting.
Differences Between Crown Types
The sealing ability of the all-porcelain crown depends on the filling materials and the quality of the underlying tooth, according to the American Dental Association (ADA), whereas the other three provide particularly good seals against leakage.
Durability is best in the gold and metal alloys crowns, whereas the all-porcelain crown tends to be less strong, more suseptible if it is put under enough pressure (if you grind your teeth at night, this may pose a problem). By contrast, the crown of porcelain fused to metal offers better durability. Both porcelain-based crowns are highly resistant to wear, but they can quickly aggravate opposing teeth if the adjacent surface becomes rough. Incidentally, the gold and metal alloys are resistant to wear and gentle on opposing teeth at the same time.
Though they sometimes become loose or fall out, crowns can last a lifetime if properly maintained. The best way to achieve this is through proper oral health. Brushing and flossing twice a day are your go-to methods of keeping your teeth healthy every morning and night. Use a toothbrush to keep your teeth spotless, especially your back molars. Above all, scheduling regular checkups with Dr. Jaleel is key to sustaining good oral hygiene so that you won’t have to choose from these different types of dental crowns.
What is a Filling?
A filling is a way to restore a tooth damaged by decay back to its normal function and shape. When Dr. Jaleel gives you a filling, she first removes the decayed tooth material, cleans the affected area, and then fills the cleaned out cavity with a filling material.
By closing off spaces where bacteria can enter, a filling also helps prevent further decay. At the Fairlawn Dental Clinic, we offer composite fillings that are durable and natural-looking.
Steps to a Filling
When you visit Dr. Jaleel to get a filling, you may be given local anesthesia to numb the area if necessary. Next, she will remove decay from the tooth, using a drill. Lasers also can be used to remove decay.
Once all the decay is removed, Dr. Jaleel will shape the space to prepare it for the filling. Different types of fillings require different shaping procedures to make sure they will stay in place. Dr. Jaleel may put in a base or a liner to protect the tooth’s pulp (where the nerves are). The base or liner can be made of composite resin, glass ionomer, zinc oxide and eugenol, or another material.
After a Filling
Some people feel sensitivity after they receive a filling. The tooth may be sensitive to pressure, air, sweet foods or cold. Composite fillings often cause sensitivity, but other types of filling materials can, too.
The most common reason for pain right after the anesthetic wears off is that the filling is too high. Call your dentist so you can be seen as soon as possible to reduce the height of the filling.
The second type of discomfort is a very sharp shock that appears only when your teeth touch. This is called galvanic shock. It is caused by two metals (one in the newly filled tooth and one in the tooth it’s touching) producing an electric current in your mouth. This would happen, for example, if you had a new amalgam filling in a bottom tooth and had a gold crown in the tooth above it.
In most other cases, the sensitivity will decrease over one to two weeks. Until then, try to avoid anything that causes it. If your tooth is extremely sensitive or your sensitivity does not decrease after two weeks, contact your dentist’s office.
It’s important to let Dr. Jaleel know about any sensitivity you are feeling. The next time you need a filling, he or she may be able to use a different material and make changes to reduce sensitivity. People vary in their response to different materials. Your dentist has no way of predicting if your tooth will react to a particular material.
When you talk to Dr, Jaleel about the sensitivity, try to describe it as precisely as possible. This information will help decide what should be done next. Dr. Jaleel may take out the filling and put in a new one. She may add a base, liner or desensitizing agent on the tooth as well. If the filling was very deep, you could need a root canal treatment to solve the problem.
Dr. Jaleel will polish the filling after it is placed, but occasionally sharp edges may remain. You can’t detect this at first because of the anesthesia. If you find one, contact Dr. Jaeel and arrange to have it smoothed as soon as possible to avoid injury to your tongue or mouth.
You may receive a temporary filling (usually white, off-white or gray) if:
- Your treatment requires more than one appointment.
- Your dentist wants to wait a short period of time for the tooth to heal.
- You have a deep cavity and the pulp (containing the nerve and blood vessels) becomes exposed during treatment.
- You need emergency dental treatment.
A temporary filling may make your tooth feel better. This is because the filling seals the tooth, protecting the pulp from bacteria and reducing sensitivity.
Temporary fillings often contain eugenol, an ingredient in over-the-counter toothache remedies. Eugenol is also a component of oil of cloves, which people use for toothache pain.
Temporary fillings are not meant to last. Usually, they fall out, fracture or wear out within a month or two. If you get a temporary filling, make sure you visit your dentist to get a permanent one. If you don’t, your tooth could become infected or you could have other problems.
We lose teeth for many reasons: gum (periodontal) disease, tooth decay and trauma — falls, accidents and sports related injuries. Adult teeth begin to form around birth. Anything happening to the body during the time of tooth formation can be disruptive. If you are undergoing radiation or chemotherapy, one of the side-effects may be a premature loss of teeth. As well, infections can result in damage to adult teeth or their early loss. And some people have missing teeth because they never developed. Dental implants and dentures can be the answer to such problems. Missing teeth can result in a loss of self confidence and lower self-esteem. If you have several missing teeth and difficulty chewing, this could lead to digestive and nutritional problems. Your other teeth may start to shift or over-erupt to compensate for the missing teeth, upsetting the relationship between teeth, muscles and joints. Loss of many posterior teeth can affect your ability to chew and may also contribute to temporomandibular joint problems. Getting your implants or dentures early can prevent the occurrence of many of the issues mentioned above. Luckily, Dr. Jaleel is your Ottawa dentist and is here to help.
Implants or Dentures?
Keep all factors, not just cost, in mind. For example, implants are a good bet for those who like hard, crunchy foods such as carrots and apples. For those who prefer softer foods like pasta, another option might be preferable. And other factors such as bite or joint problems or some diseases should also be considered. On the blog today, we will break down the various restorative options for you.
Retained and supported by oral tissues, and retention and comfort can be an issue. Dentures can last up to 10 years, but an annual relining of the denture to maintain a good fit is recommended.
- Least-expensive option
- No surgery
- Can be made quickly
- Look good.
- Uncomfortable if not properly fitted
- Patients may develop sore spots
- Gums and bones shrink as we age and dentures accelerate that process.
Removable Partial Dentures
Supported and held by both tissues and teeth. Metal clasps wrap around various teeth, retaining the partial denture or, in some cases, attachments can be made to implants instead of teeth, which look better esthetically, as metal clasps are eliminated. Last up to 10 years, unless you need a crown or lose teeth.
- Last long
- Relatively cheap
- Relining required to avoid clasps damaging teeth
- Can contribute to bone loss.
Typically the teeth (or implants if there are not enough natural teeth) on either side act as anchors via crowns to support and retain an artificial tooth or teeth in between; hence, the term “bridge.” Can last 10 years or longer;
- Feels natural
- Very slim compared to a denture; looks great (which is a great psychological advantage)
- Food tastes better since the roof of the mouth isn’t covered (where the taste buds are).
- More expensive than dentures
- Cost increases if more implants needed to hold the prosthesis
- Need to reduce tooth size, which may weaken the tooth.
A tooth is attached to an “artificial root” made from titanium or titanium alloy, which is surgically placed in the jawbone, lasting up to 10 years or more.
- Tremendous psychological advantage
- Feels like your own teeth
- Nothing removable in the mouth
- No damage to other teeth
- No associated bone loss.
- Most expensive option
- Surgery is necessary.
How to take care of your dentures or implants?
Dentures: Remove dentures and soak overnight in denture cleanser, warm water or in a mix of warm water and vinegar (half and half). If your denture has metal clasps, use warm water only for soaking. Brush with a denture brush and rinse.
Implants and Bridge: Gently brush and floss daily. These can be treated more like natural teeth, but they are not as strong, so be gentle when brushing and flossing. If you have implants, be especially careful when flossing where the implant meets the gum. Talk to Dr. Jaleel about using specific cleaners, if necessary.