This is an option for filling the space created by a missing tooth. It is formed to look like the missing tooth, and it takes its place in the mouth. The sides of a bridge use the two surrounding teeth for support, hence the name. A bridge replaces the missing tooth, both functionally and cosmetically. Bridge work is as much an art as it is an exact science. The materials used may be gold alloys, porcelain bonded to metal alloy, or all ceramic material. The choice of material depends on requirements for strength, wear, and/or esthetics.
It is important that a missig tooth be replaced as soon as possible for several reasons. If not treated the teeth surrounding the gap begin to shift inward, creating a whole chain reaction of bad things. Teeth use their neighbors for support, and, with one missing, they start to “fall.” As this worsens the bite changes in response to the pressure. This can eventually result in problems with the entire jaw, e.g. TMJ. The surrounding teeth deteriorate and it is just a matter of time before they, too, are lost. Gum disease becomes a serious problem, with the difficulty of treatment increasing as the neglect continues.
Drs. Smallberg and Satornino take the time to do a meticulous job preparing and taking an impression of your teeth for a bridge. Their attention to detail reduces the amount of appointments that you may need, due to a crown not fitting properly and having to be remade.
Crowns are full coverage restorations that are used to cover a tooth that is likely to break, or is too broken down to be restored with a filling. They are most commonly done after root canal treatment, or when a large filling wears out. The larger the hole made by a cavity that has to be treated, the more likely a crown will be needed. Even after a filling is put in a large cavity, a tooth is more likely to break.
It takes two appointments to restore a tooth with a crown. In the first any decay is removed from the tooth and it is shaped to accept the crown. Then an impression is made of the tooth for use in fabricating a crown. Between the two visits the crown is made, usually of high-strength porcelain over gold alloy, all ceramic material, or gold. During this time a temporary crown is worn. In the second visit this temporary is removed. Then the permanent crown is adjusted as needed and then cemented in place.
Drs. Smallberg and Satornino take the time to do a meticulous job preparing and taking an impression of your tooth for a crown. Their attention to detail reduces the amount of appointments that you may need, due to a crown not fitting properly and having to be remade.
There are different types of dentures, but they share their common function. They replace teeth that have too much decay to save, become loose or have been lost due to bone loss.
The entire mouth is examined and a determination is made as to which teeth will have to be removed, and which will remain. The unsalvageable teeth are then extracted. Dentures are fitted to go over or around whatever teeth remain in the mouth, depending on the type. There is an adjustment period after dentures are placed in the mouth, and it can take some getting used to. However, once accustomed to the dentures, all the normal functionality and appearance return and one just carries on as usual. Often implants can used to further stabilize the dentures.
Some patients have a history of multiple sets of dentures that are unhappy with. For those patients, Drs. Smallberg and Satornino work in conjunction with a local dental lab, with excellent attention to detail. Patients can be seen in the dental lab for some of their visits to work directly with a lab technician to achieve a customized denture. They will work with you to pick the shade and shape of denture teeth that you want. Please let the doctors know if you have been unhappy with your previous dentures, so that they can arrange for this service for you.
A dental implant is an option to replace a missing tooth. In this procedure, a titanium implant is surgically implanted into the bone and allowed to set. The bone grows around it forming a tight connection, which additionally slows or stops the bone loss that occurs when the root of a natural tooth is missing. Once the implant is firmly set in the mouth, the dentist then works to attach the replacement tooth onto the top of the implant. This permanent solution has the advantages over bridge work that it does not stress the surrounding teeth for support, and titanium can never get a cavity.
Implants can also be used as support as part of a denture. Please ask the doctors if you are a candidate for this procedure. When Dr. Smallberg or Dr. Satornino restore your implant, they almost exclusively use a “custom abutment.” (Not all dentists use this customized option.) The advantage of a custom abutment is that the dental lab using a computer to design the abutment especially for your mouth. Many other dentists use “prefabricated abutments,” which may be adequate in some circumstances, but it is like putting stock cabinets, instead of custom cabinets in everyone’s kitchen. Some kitchens have differently sized and angled walls, just like everyone’s bone and bite are different. A custom abutment allows us to customize your implant to your mouth.
Depending on your circumstance, the doctors may also recommend a “surgical stent.” This is a guide that the surgeon uses to place your implant. It is a way for the doctors to communicate with the surgeon on the best place to put the implant, so that the abutment and crown are allowed to be in the best position possible for your mouth.
Emergency and After Office Hours: Dental emergencies are never convenient or timely. At Smallberg & Satornino, DDS , P.L.L.C.we are committed to our patients’ dental health. We routinely see emergency patients as soon as possible. Many emergencies can be seen on the same day that you call. Please call our office as early in the day as possible so that we can work you into our schedule.
What’s causing my pain?
When your teeth don’t fit together properly and/or the two small joints in front of your ears – TMJ joints – don’t function smoothly, pain and pressure results. You may experience migraine headaches or unexplained facial, neck, shoulder, or jaw pain. Tooth wear, teeth grinding, tingling extremities, and chronic earaches are also on the long list of common problems caused by TMJ disorder.
Customized TMJ Therapy to Restore Comfortable Function
Improper bite alignment and temporomandibular joint (TMJ) problems can cause pain as well as deterioration of teeth and supporting structures. Dr. Smallberg and Dr. Satornino evaluate smiles for these problems as part of comprehensive treatment planning. As Dawson Academy graduates, they have knowledge of bite problems and TMJ-related issues and can provide contemporary therapies to alleviate discomfort and restore optimal function.
Common Causes of TMJ Disorder
There is no single cause for TMJ dysfunction. Any number of factors or combination of factors may be to blame including:
- Trauma to the head, neck, or face
- Trauma to the TMJ joint or arthritis
- Hormonal changes or imbalances
- Malocclusion (where the jaws do not line up correctly resulting in bite problems)