Visiting the dentist regularly for routine check-ups and dental care is essential to your oral and overall health.
At Aesthetic Smiles we make educating our patients about preventive dental care a cornerstone of our practice. Our advanced formal training in all areas of general and cosmetic dentistry can help your entire family achieve and maintain a healthy, beautiful smile. We work hard to master the newest techniques and technologies general dentistry has to offer while maintaining a close, trusting relationship with our patients.
Whether it's getting a routine cleaning, getting a root canal, replacing old metal fillings or restoring a cracked tooth with a crown or bridge, Dr. Pilling and his incredible staff will make sure your dentistry experience is as comfortable and enjoyable as possible. We offer all dental treatments at our office and are highly trained in each area. This way you can recieve most of your dental care in one place. No more running around town to multiple different offices just to get a tooth fixed. And if a referral is warranted in certain situation we only use the best as part of our team. This way you can be assured that you are always in great competant hands.
Below is a list of all General Dentistry procedures preformed in our office
Tooth Colored fillings
Here is an example of before and after of some tooth colored fillings done in our office. Notice how natural they look.
We only use tooth colored fillings in our office. Not just because they look better but because we find that they are also better for the teeth. They seal a tooth better then metal fillings and also help strengthen the tooth where metal fillings can weaken the tooth. Metal fillings are prone to leaking and getting cavities around the edges. Here is a picture showing an old metal filling with dark edges. This is a sign of a leaky filling that can get decay underneath it. Your tooth brush can brush and clean the surface but can not get under the fillling to clean.
Metal also expands and contracts with time and temperature. We find this can create cracks and fractures in the teeth. We have a blog post that talks about this more in detail. Here is a photo of the cracks that can be caused by these fillings when they wear out.
Are metal fillings dangerous?
Metal fillings do contain mercury in them. They are called Amalgam fillings. There are studies that show that these fillings have not caused any health issues and this is the official position of the American Dental Association. We also understand that there is always more research coming out on this subject. At Aesthetic Smiles we don't currently recommend removing metal fillings if they look perfectly fine. We will remove them if the patient requests so, and we have many that do so and claim it has helped their overall health. To be safe we do not place metal fillings. We use tooth colored fillings called composite because we feel the properties of this material are superior to the metal and do not weaken the tooth the way metal fillings do. We offer the best at Aesthetic Smiles but recognize that it would be reckless and aggressive to recommend replacing metal fillings that are functioning just fine.
Many people have receeding gums. Most do not notice unless it creates sensitivity. Receeding gums is a sign of a bigger problem, receeding bone. Teeth are held into the mouth with a foundation of bone and gums that cover and protect the bone from infection, and bacterial, and trauma. When this foundation receeds it exposes roots which are more suseptable to cavities and sensitivity. It also weakens the tooth because less bone is holding it in place. This can lead to loose teeth, infection, and ultimately tooth loss. Much of this damage is irreversible so it is important to stop or reverse it when it is in its beginning stages. It is also important to prevent it.
Recession is caused by many factors. Clenching or grinding of the teeth is the most common cause. It weakens the foundation and recession results. Other causes are abrasion from a stiff toothbrush, erosion from acid, or overexpansion during orthodontic treatment or development.
Gum grafting along with eliminating the factors that cause it is the way to treat recession if it is significant. We will do an exam to see if your recession warrants treatment. Here is a before and after photo of the results that gum grafting can achieve.
Root Canal Therapy
Root canal therapy is a procedure to help remove an infected pulp or nerve inside a tooth. When the pulp becomes infected it can lead to pain, swelling, discolored, or a dead tooth. This infection if left long enough will create an abscess which can compromise the tooth and bone holding it in place. This infection can be caused by decay, trauma, gum disease, or a fractured or cracked tooth. The root canal procedure removes all the infection from the tooth and seals it up to prevent reinfection. After a root canal the tooth is restored with either a filling or a crown. Root canals get a bad reputation because they are often left until they are very painful to get treatment. Newer techniques and materials have made root canal therapy a more comfortable procedure. Below is a diagram showing the different parts of the tooth including the pulp or living part of the tooth.
Here is a diagram showing a tooth with a cavity and infection in the root with an abscess. The pulp or root area is cleaned out and sealed.