Dental Health

FILLINGS

Fillings are done to remove decay, and replace the affected tooth structure. It is called a filling because new a material fills hole that decay left. Now days most teeth are treated with bonded tooth colored composite resin fillings. Caught early enough, cavities can be treated easily and painlessly. If not treated decay can lead to tooth pain and/or infection, and the tooth would need root canal treatment or extraction.

BONDING

Bonding involves adhering composite resin material that is matched to the color of the tooth, to the front of the tooth. This is done to repair damage done to the tooth by decay, to alter the alignment of the tooth, close gaps between the teeth, or for cosmetic purposes. First the surface of the tooth is roughened in order to accept the bonding and hold it. A gel is applied to micro etch the tooth surface, and a primer/bond agent is applied so the material adheres to the surface. Then the material itself is placed on the tooth and hardened with intense light. The composite resin material is shaped and polished to get a lustrous finish as a last step.

SEALANTS

This is used to fill in narrow grooves in a tooth that cannot be adequately cleaned by brushing. In some cases, the tooth structure has fine grooves or pits which accumulate plaque, not because the person doesn’t brush, but because they’re too narrow to allow even one bristle into them. These will develop cavities over time, and you don’t want that. So the dentist will brush on a coating that seals the grooves and pits, making it possible to brush off all the plaque and keep your teeth healthy.

NON-SURGICAL GUM TREATMENTS

The gums, ligaments, and bone around the teeth form the foundation for ones teeth. All structures are also referred to as the periodontium. When the periodontium is not healthy, it jeopardizes the teeth just as a bad foundation would threaten the stability of a house. Signs of unhealthy periodontium (gum disease) may be as follows: gums that are red and bleed easily, persistent bad breath, gums that are pulled away from the tooth, loose teeth, and changes in the position or bite of the teeth. Any of these signs may mean something is wrong. With the proper care, however, it may be possible to return them to a healthy state. This is where appropriate gum treatments come in. If you’re having a problem, come in and see us so we can take care of it right away. The treatment usually involves a deep cleaning or root planing done under a local anesthetic, along with local antibiotic agents. If the gum disease gets too severe it may need to be treated through surgery or extraction. This is why it is important to get it treated at the first sign of a problem.

X-RAYS

This is a focused beam of X-Ray particles through bone which produces an image on special film, showing the structure through which it passed. This gives the familiar black and white images that doctors and dentists use to diagnose problems. X-rays are a necessary part of the diagnostic process, and not to use them could lead to undiagnosed disease. Without an X-ray of the whole tooth, and supporting bone and gum tissues, there is no real way to detect infection or pathology that requires attention.

In our office we use digital radiography which allows us to take X-rays using 50-70% less radiation versus conventional X-rays. Coupled with computer monitorying, digital x-ray technology allows us to enhance the images for better diagnosis of any dental concerns.

Important Information Regarding COVID-19

Patients,

We are happy to welcome you back to the office as we reopen under the guidelines surrounding this unprecedented pandemic. Hygiene and safety have always been a priority at our office and we will be taking additional measures to ensure the safety of our patients and staff during this time.  Here are a few of our current in office changes and guidelines:

  1. Any patient experiencing flu-like symptoms or fever, feeling sick or that has been exposed to anyone suspected to have been exposed to COVID-19, please reschedule your appointment and please do not enter the office.
  2. When coming in for an appointment, you will be greeted upon your arrival by one of our staff members at the front door who will take your temperature and ask a few pre-screening questions before bringing you directly to the treatment area.
  3. For your safety and the safety of our other patients, we strongly prefer for anyone accompanying a patient to wait in the car during the exam unless absolutely necessary. Caregivers and guardians assisting patients with special needs are welcome to accompany the patient to the treatment area, but we prefer they wear a facial covering.
  4. For new patients under 18, one parent may accompany the patient into the office. 

Our staff and patients are our family, and we are doing everything we can to keep our family safe.  We thank you for your understanding and patience and look forward to seeing you again very soon!

Dr. Gibson, Dr. Zieman & Dr. Heath