You’re probably used to seeing your dentist in Princeton for regular checkups, exams, and the occasional X-ray to check for cavities. From time to time you may even need a filling or two. But there are a lot of services that dentists offer you may have never heard about or be familiar with. Here are some examples of little known dental services:
Uneven or rough tooth enamel doesn’t have to be covered up. Instead, it might be easier to smooth it out. Enamel contouring (also called “enamelplasty” or “enameloplasty”) uses a fine instrument to file down irregular edges so that the shape of your tooth appears smooth and even with the ones around it.
Bonding uses tooth-colored putty to cover over small surface flaws. So, if you have a gap between teeth, chipped enamel, or even a surface irregularity that stands out from the rest of your tooth, white bonding can cover it up like it was never there.
And if bonding a cosmetic issue didn’t already sound like a great idea, here’s the best part: you probably don’t even need your tooth to be numbed up to do it! You’re usually in and out in under half an hour.
Will people be able to tell that your tooth is bonded? Not likely. Our Princeton, NJ, dentist will custom match the composite to your tooth’s natural color, so that it blends in with everything around it!
Gummy Smile Treatments
It’s common to think that dentists only treat teeth. But did you know that they’re also experts on your entire oral health? Soft tissues like your gums play a crucial role in your dental wellness. And if you don’t like the way your gums look — specifically if you have a “gummy smile” — your dentist can help!
There are a few different approaches that dentists offer to treat gummy smiles. Some involve adjusting the gum contour by shortening the tissues to reveal a larger tooth surface. That way you don’t have to add to the tooth size through veneers or bonding; you’re naturally revealing more enamel by adjusting the shape of the gum tissues around each respective tooth.
Some dentist’s offices offer ceramic, tooth-colored braces as an alternative to metal brackets and wires. These adult braces blend in better with your teeth when you’re smiling or talking. However, they still require extra time to clean and can collect food debris throughout the day.
At Canal Vista Family Dental, we offer an Invisalign alternative to our Princeton patients that uses clear, removable aligners. These “invisible” trays slip right over your teeth and can be removed whenever you’re eating or brushing. They’re much easier to care for than ceramic orthodontics.
Cold Sore Treatments
Fever blisters and cold sores are viral in nature but can flare up at any time (especially if your immune system is suppressed.) Dentists can prescribe medication for these types of ulcers so that they don’t hurt or last as long as normal. The key is to see a dentist as soon as you feel the “tingling” or “burning” sensations starting to pop up. If your dentist uses soft tissue lasers, they can even treat the area before the cold sore is visible. Studies show that laser treatment for fever blisters cuts their life span in half!
Silver Filling Replacement
Older styles of dental fillings were made from an alloy of different silver-colored metals. This amalgam created a durable restoration, but the dark color sometimes detracts from the way your teeth look. And on top of that, there are some concerns that people have about the mercury content of silver restorations.
To enhance the overall look and integrity of your teeth, we can remove your old silver fillings and replace them with a ceramic restoration. For example, a white filling, porcelain inlay/onlay, or a ceramic crown. The one you need will depend on how large of a filling we’re removing.
Internal Tooth Bleaching
One of the least known dental treatments is something we call internal bleaching. Instead of whitening your tooth from the outside with a tray or in-house application method, this particular type of treatment is used on teeth that are getting darker because of nerve death. Past trauma — such as an athletic injury or car accident — can lead to gradual darkening of the tooth several years later. With an internal bleaching procedure, we create a small opening in the tooth and clean out the dying pulp, then bleach the enamel around it so that the overall tooth looks whiter. Internal bleaching isn’t very common and is typically only used on a case-by-case basis.
Do you have hypersensitive teeth? If sensitivity toothpaste and fluoride mouthwash isn’t helping, you have another option: seeing our dentist for a desensitizing treatment.
This process usually involves applying a special varnish to your teeth, which helps block off the tiny tubules (pores) across your tooth enamel. Since the tubules house tiny nerve endings, the varnish desensitizes the tooth. Most people experience results for up to three months after each application. Just note, your teeth will feel a bit sticky or have a light film on them for the rest of the day, but it won’t be visible. Don’t brush your teeth until later in the day to make sure you get optimum contact time. There’s no time limit on how long to wait before you drink or eat anything.
Any time a tooth falls out prematurely or has to get extracted before the adult tooth comes in, that extra space can permanently alter your tooth alignment. To save room for the erupting tooth (or if you’re an adult – a dental implant) a temporary space maintainer can be placed.
Looking for comprehensive family dentistry in Princeton? Call Canal Vista Family Dental today to request an appointment!