It’s no secret that the road to a bright, healthy smile is actually no secret at all: just brush, floss and be on time for your professional dental exam every 6 months! Professional dental exams are all about prevention – preventing existing problems from getting worse and preventing dental problems from developing in the future. Arvada, CO residents who have regular dental exams make it possible for your Dr. Kraft. Dr. Larson, and our team to identify and treat an issue in its earliest stage – which is not only great for your oral health but also good for your wallet!
There’s nothing to fear with a dental exam. Your teeth will be visually examined for signs of plaque, tartar and tooth decay. Your gums will simultaneously be examined for puffiness or discoloration, which are warning signs of gum disease. A full set of dental X-rays may also be taken during your dental exam, to enable your dentist to see below the surfaces of your teeth. Dental exams typically end with a dental cleaning, to remove yucky surface stains and buildup.
Dental X-rays have come a long way. Modern dental X-rays are more safe, efficient, comfortable and immensely more informative than the X-rays of years past. Digital X-rays, one of the latest and most advanced dental technologies, produce high-quality images of your teeth that can be viewed instantly by you and your dentist on a LCD monitor. Digital X-rays reduce radiation by up to 90% and provide exceptional diagnostic info that ensures potential problems are caught in their earliest stages. Intraoral photography is another awesome alternative to traditional dental X-rays. With intraoral photography, problems such as cavities, fractures and discolorations in the teeth are captured through clear and sharp photographic images that are taken with a 35mm or digital camera…. Say cheese!!
It’s true that no matter how frequently you brush and floss, plaque and tartar deposits can still build up all over your teeth. A professional teeth cleaning is the single most effective way to remove these deposits and prevent them from causing more serious oral health problems in the future. While a traditional teeth cleaning involves manually scraping away these deposits with advanced dental tools, advances in dental technologies now give you more options for teeth cleanings.
A deep cleaning may be recommended if excessive plaque and tartar deposits hiding below the gum line. Deep cleanings, also known as scaling and root planing, involve a two-part process: first, the stubborn deposits are removed, and then the root surfaces are smoothened. A deep cleaning helps prevent periodontal disease and restores gum tissues to a healthy state.
ORAL CANCER SCREENING
Oral cancer affects nearly 35,000 Americans every single year. The keys to surviving oral cancer are early detection and early treatment. This starts with a regular oral cancer screening – at least once every six months. An oral cancer screening takes just minutes, is pain-free and can always be performed during regular dental exams. Did you know that if you are male a regular oral cancer screening is especially critical? Fact: Oral cancer is more than twice as common in men as it is in women. Others at a high risk of oral cancer include those that are over the age of 60, tobacco smokers and heavy drinkers.
Tired of seeing unsightly silver fillings when you smile? Or is it simply time to replace an old or leaking filling? Consider going with white fillings. White fillings are just as durable as they are attractive! Made of composite resin, white fillings match the natural color of your teeth and are an excellent option for small to mid-sized cavities. White fillings are strong, stain-resistant and require less removal of your tooth structure than amalgam fillings.
PORCELAIN DENTAL CROWNS
Dental crowns can be made of a variety of materials, including stainless steel, gold and silver, however, nothing is more aesthetically pleasing than a porcelain dental crown. Porcelain dental crowns match the natural color of your teeth and are virtually undetectable by the naked eye.Since they’re metal-free, porcelain dental crowns are an attractive alternative for Lake Arbor patients with metal allergies…. Most Arvada, CO patients prefer porcelain crowns because they don’t just look beautiful – they’re ultra long-lasting too!
Dental veneers (aka porcelain veneers or dental porcelain laminates) are ultra thin, custom-made shells of tooth-colored materials designed to cover the front surface of teeth. They are not only used to improve the appearance of your smile, but also commonly as the finishing touch to restorative procedures. These shells are bonded to the front of the teeth, changing their color, shape, size, or length depending on the patient.
For many years people have turned to dentures to replace missing teeth, because it is not only great for your oral health, but it’s a great way to help you look as young as you feel! Here at Lake Arbor Dental, there are a variety of natural-looking and comfortable dentures for our patients who need to replace missing teeth. Made of a gum-colored plastic resin or acrylic base and either resin or porcelain replacement teeth, dentures are custom designed by Dr. Kraft or Dr. Larson to fit your mouth. If you have several teeth or all teeth missing on the upper or lower jaw, full dentures may be a great option for you. Partial dentures, which can be either fixed or removable, are a wonderful solution for patients who have several missing teeth scattered along the upper or lower jaw.The process of getting dentures can take a few months and a few visits.
Just as with your natural teeth, dentures will require daily maintenance. With typical use, your dentures can last 5-7 years. During that time, you may need to come in and see your doc periodically for denture relines to accommodate changes in the contours of your mouth. Regular denture relines involve resurfacing the base to ensure that your dentures fit and function perfectly. If you break your dentures, it’s critical to bring them to your dentist for professional denture repair. Home denture repair kits can cause more damage and be even more costly to fix.
Dental bridges have been used for centuries to replace missing teeth. Today, dental bridges are still considered one of the most durable, conservative and cost-effective options for bridging the gap between a missing tooth and surrounding teeth. Comprised of two anchoring teeth and a replacement tooth, dental bridges help prevent surrounding teeth from drifting out of position, improve chewing and speaking, and help keep your natural face shape in tact.
There are three types of dental bridges:
- Traditional dental bridges
- Cantilever dental bridges
- Maryland bridges
Traditional bridges have either dental crowns or dental implants on either side of the missing tooth, plus a replacement tooth, which is held in place by a post-like structure called a dental abutment. Cantilever dental bridges are used in cases where there are surrounding teeth only on one side of the missing tooth. Maryland bridges are made of a specialized resin that is cemented to a metal framework and cemented to the enamel of surrounding teeth.
Dental bridges typically take 2-3 weeks to complete and are less invasive than other options, such as dental implants. With good oral hygiene and regular dental visits, dental bridges can last up to 30 years.
ROOT CANALS (ENDODONTICS)
Root canals have gotten a bad wrap, but don’t believe the rumors; the dreaded root canal isn’t dreadful at all! Root canals are needed when either decay or an injury infects the inner tooth (the pulp). In the earliest stages of infection, you may not feel any pain at all. But when it progresses, you could have a toothache and swelling, or a dental abscess might form. Root canals remove the infection and prevent it from spreading. Thanks to laser root canals, this process is faster, more comfortable and, in many cases, more thorough than conventional root canals. Pulp capping is an alternative to root canals that are used when the infection has yet to penetrate the pulp. Pulp capping can also prevent a large dental filling from getting too close to the nerve.
Oral surgery is an umbrella term for surgical treatments such as dental implants, wisdom teeth extractions and bone grafting. Dental implants, an excellent solution for missing teeth, are surgically placed tooth roots that hold dental crowns in place. Dr. Kraft or Dr. Larson may recommend a wisdom tooth extraction if there isn’t enough room in your mouth or your teeth or crowding to accommodate wisdom teeth and they become impacted, partially erupted or infected. Bone grafting transfers bone from one part of the jaw to another, usually to accommodate a dental implant.
Have you been living with persistent jaw pain, excessive ear pain and / or headaches? You could have TMJ – temporomandibular jaw disorder. TMJ can often be traced back to an improper bite, misaligned jaw joints, or an injury to the jaw or face. TMJ treatment from a dentist can relieve the discomfort. Although TMJ treatment varies from patient to patient, it typically involves one or several procedures, including the use of an orthotic splint, enamel reshaping, dental crowns, dental braces or night guards. The goal of TMJ treatment is to stabilize your bite so that your teeth, jaw muscles and jaw joints work properly together without strain – and without pain!
Our Arvada/ Westminster office can see most emergency appointments on the same day. Many emergency problems can be handled at the first appointment. Our doctors will take the time to go over treatment plans that are designed just for you! Contact us TODAY for any of your immediate dental concerns…. the sooner the better!
Dental implants are replacement tooth roots. Implants provide a strong foundation for fixed (permanent) or removable replacement teeth that are made to match your natural teeth.
There are many advantages to dental implants, including:
- Improved appearance- Dental implants look and feel like your own teeth. And because they are designed to fuse with bone, they become permanent.
- Improved speech- With poor-fitting dentures, the teeth can slip within the mouth causing you to mumble or slur your words. Dental implants allow you to speak without the worry that teeth might slip.
- Improved comfort- Because they become part of you, implants eliminate the discomfort of removable dentures.
- Easier eating- Sliding dentures can make chewing difficult. Dental implants function like your own teeth, allowing you to eat your favorite foods with confidence and without pain.
- Improved self-esteem- Dental implants can give you back your smile and help you feel better about yourself.
- Improved oral health- Dental implants don’t require reducing other teeth, as a tooth-supported bridge does. Because nearby teeth are not altered to support the implant, more of your own teeth are left intact, improving long-term oral health. Individual implants also allow easier access between teeth, improving oral hygiene.
- Durability- Implants are very durable and will last many years. With good care, many implants last a lifetime.
- Convenience- Removable dentures are just that; removable. Dental implants eliminate the embarrassing inconvenience of removing dentures, as well as the need for messy adhesives to keep them in place.