NEWS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS



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22/Apr/2019

Life expectancy has been steadily increasing due to improved medical care and healthier life styles. An estimated 620 million people, representing 8.5% of the world population is 65+ year of age. By 2050, that number is expected to rise to 1.6 billion (17%). According to the World Health Organization (2015), 32% of that group (198 million) is fully edentulous (without teeth). Complete edentulism has been traditionally treated with complete dentures. If you have dentures, you’ve probably experienced their inherent problems; including the lack of stability, poor fit, inability to chew food properly and many others. More recently, predictable dental implant-based alternatives have become available. Imagine walking into the dentist’s office with no teeth and walking out with a beautiful smile, all in a matter of a few hours. A quick consultation appointment can determine if all-on-four implants (teeth in a day) is right for you.

WHAT EXACTLY ARE ALL-ON-4 DENTAL IMPLANTS?

All-on-4 dental implants (also known as teeth in a day), is a treatment concept for immediate temporary restorations in edentulous patients. The procedure itself consists of 4 (or sometimes more) implants that are strategically placed in an edentulous jaw, which are then used to support a fixed dental restoration (see image below). After the implants are surgically placed using a template to guide their placement, a temporary full-arch restoration is connected to the implants. The result is an amazing smile that is completed in a relatively short period of time.

WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?

After that appointment is completed, you will return for a follow-up appointment in a few days. Implants usually requires an average of 3-4 months to integrate with the surrounding bone. During that period, you can continue your daily activities as usual.

Once the implants are integrated, the definitive restoration can be made. This is usually completed in 4-5 appointments. You can select the shape and shade of the teeth you like for the final restoration and make any modifications based on your temporary restoration.

IS ALL-ON-4 RIGHT FOR ME?

Dental records including impressions and a special type of x-rays called cone-beam computerized tomography (CBCT) is needed to determine if you are a candidate for the procedure. Also, additional bone grafting may be needed to replace bone that may have been lost overtime. A history of uncontrolled medical conditions may be a contraindication for the procedure.

IS THIS PROCEDURE PAINFUL?

This procedure is completed in the dental chair under local anesthesia similar to any other dental procedure. You also have the option of sedation. Some discomfort and/or swelling may occur. Also, a soft diet is recommended for the first two weeks. This will help minimize undue pressure on the implants while they integrate and protect the temporary teeth.

WHAT MATERIAL IS MY TEETH MADE FROM?

Implants are made from a strong titanium alloy. They are resistant to corrosion and do not decay, unlike natural teeth. Implant restorations can be made from a variety of materials:

  • Titanium-reinforced resin: A titanium framework supports resin teeth and gums. This provides a natural look and has the added advantage for easy replacement of teeth when needed.
  • Zirconia: A prosthesis that is machine-milled from a single, solid block of material. Its use has been widely adopted in dentistry due to its strength and aesthetics.
  • Porcelain-fused-metal: The restoration consists of separate bridges that are connected to the implants by cement or screws. Considered to be the gold standard in dentistry as it combines both strength and aesthetics.

HOW LONG DO ALL-ON-4 IMPLANTS LAST?

Once implants are placed and successfully integrate, they’re expected to remain indefinitely. Like with any other restoration, prostheses exhibit wear with time and may need to be replaced.

DOES THIS WORK ONLY FOR PATIENTS WITHOUT TEETH?

The all-on-4 protocol can also be used for patients with remaining teeth that are planned for extraction. In that case, teeth can be removed, implants immediately placed and the temporary restoration attached during the same appointment.

WHAT CAN I DO TO PROTECT & MAINTAIN MY NEW TEETH?

After your final restorations are placed, there are a few things you can do to care for them:

  • Get professional cleanings: remember to schedule your dental hygiene appointments bi-annually to maintain the health of your teeth and gums.
  • Wear your night guard: if you clench or grind your teeth (especially during sleep), it’s a good idea to protect your restorations with a custom-made night guard.
  • Continue to brush and floss: after every meal. There are adjunctive cleaning aids that can facilitate hygiene. We’ll review this with you in detail after the definitive restorations are delivered.

WHO SHOULD DO MY TREATMENT?

All-on-4 procedures are complex. Working with specialists who have advanced training and extensive experience in implant procedures is recommended to ensure a predictable outcome and longevity for your restorations. A team consisting of a prosthodontist and a surgeon usually work together to plan and carry out the treatment from start to finish.

Call us today to schedule your consultation and find out how all-on-4 dental implants can give you the smile you’ve always wanted.


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22/Apr/2019

Going to the dentist is not exactly anyone’s favorite activity. Yet, it is a necessity for most of us (or at least it should be). With all the available online information, it can be a challenge to get the information that you are looking for. I started this blog to help patients make educated decisions about their dental care.

Porcelain veneers have been used in dentistry for many years as a quick way to restore patients’ smiles. A quick consultation appointment can determine if porcelain veneers are right for you. If you have chipped, crooked, discolored or uneven teeth, you might be a candidate for porcelain veneers.

WHAT EXACTLY ARE PORCELAIN VENEERS?

They are thin, tooth-shaped shells that are placed on the front of your teeth after they have been slightly re-contoured. Porcelain veneers are chemically bonded using strong adhesive material and become part of the tooth itself. The result is a beautiful smile that can be seen right away.

CAN PORCELAIN VENEERS IMPROVE MY SMILE?

While porcelain veneers can be used to replace a small missing portion of your teeth, they are not indicated to restore large defects. They can also be used for correction of minor misalignment of teeth in lieu of orthodontics. This can significantly shorten the treatment time associated with orthodontics.

Although teeth whitening can be used to improve teeth shade, porcelain veneers provide the added benefit of modifying the size and shape of teeth. If you have small teeth, spaces between them or would like to improve the shape and/or dimensions of your teeth, porcelain veneers might be right for you. This is especially true if you have permanent teeth that are shaped like “baby” teeth. Veneers can be used to restore teeth to their natural appearance and give you the great smile you’ve always wanted.

HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO GET VENEERS?

During the initial consultation appointment, a thorough evaluation of your teeth and gums is completed. An aesthetic try-in (“mock-up”) serves as a blueprint for the final product. It allows you to evaluate the appearance of the planned restoration prior to performing any dental work, and help you decide if further modifications are needed.

Porcelain veneers can be completed in 2-3 visits. The first visit typically involves making final impressions (molds) of the teeth after they have been lightly prepared. Temporary veneers are made and attached to your teeth during the same visit and the shade of the teeth is recorded. At the second visit, the temporary veneers are removed, and the final veneers are tried in and evaluated for any adjustments before final cementation.

WHAT CAN I DO TO MAINTAIN MY VENEERS?

After your new veneers are in place, how do you maintain them? Well, here are a few things you can do:

  • Get professional cleanings: remember to schedule your dental hygiene appointments bi-annually to maintain the health of your teeth and gums.
  • Wear your night guard: if you clench or grind your teeth (especially during sleep), it’s a good idea to protect your veneers and teeth with a custom-made night guard.
  • Avoid hard foods: although they are made from strong porcelain material, care should be taken while chewing. Hard foods should be avoided be avoided to minimize the possibility of chipping. While you may experience some sensitivity, especially to cold and hot foods or liquids, this usually subsides in the first two weeks.
  • Continue to brush and floss your teeth: twice a day, with a fluoride-containing toothpaste and mouthwash. Avoid any abrasive toothpaste that may cause the polished surface of your veneers to become rough.

WHO SHOULD PLACE MY VENEERS?

Although porcelain veneers have become a routine dental procedure, their placement remains a relatively technique-sensitive procedure. A dentist with advanced training and extensive experience in aesthetic procedures is recommended to ensure a predictable outcome and longevity for your restorations.

Call us today to schedule your consultation and find out how veneers can help improve your smile.

 



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