Your dental examination will consist of:
- A review of your current medical history
- Low radiation dose digital x-ray, electronic cavity detection systems (Caries ID and Spectra)
- Oral cancer exam
- Velscope oral cancer screening instrument
- Evaluation of the jaw joints (TMJ)
- Examination with an intra-oral camera
- Dental x-rays when necessary
- Examination for cavities (May include use of the Caries ID cavity detection device, a totally pain free way to detect cavities without x-rays)
- Detailed examination of your gums
- High resolution digital photographs when needed
Your dental cleaning (prophylaxis):
- Removal of soft plaque and hard tartar
- Polishing of the teeth to remove stain and restore luster
- A fluoride or antibacterial rinse
- Oral hygiene instruction
Dr. Schlesinger recommends that teens and adults have a dental examination and professional cleaning at least every 6 months. We can help you maintain a fabulous smile for a lifetime.
A smile can be the most eye-catching feature of a face. With dentistry's many advances, you no longer have to settle for stained, chipped, or misshapen teeth. You now have choices that can help you smile with confidence.
Even the most subtle change in your smile can make a dramatic difference in the way you look and feel about yourself. Talk to your dentist about the options most suitable for you, what your expectations are and the dental fees involved. Some options are:
- Tooth whitening (bleaching) brightens teeth that are discolored or stained. Bleaching may be done completely in the dental office or Dr. Schlesinger may dispense a system for you to use at home.
- Bonding can improve the appearance of teeth that are chipped, broken, cracked, stained, or have spaces between them. With bonding, tooth-colored materials are applied, or bonded, to the tooth surface.
- Enamel shaping involves modifying teeth to improve their appearance by removing or contouring enamel. The process, which often is combined with bonding, usually is quick and comfortable and the results can be seen immediately.
- Veneers are thin custom-made shells designed to cover the front side of teeth. Made of tooth-colored materials, veneers are used to treat spaces between teeth and teeth that are chipped or worn, permanently stained, poorly shaped or slightly crooked.
Tooth colored fillings, also called white or bonded fillings, are dental fillings that restore and mimic the natural appearance of tooth structure. In addition to restoring teeth that have fractured or decayed, tooth colored fillings may also be used cosmetically to change the size, color and shape of teeth. This quality is particularly useful in closing gaps between teeth; repairing chipped teeth and making teeth appear to be more straight or even.
What are the advantages of tooth colored fillings?
- They closely match natural tooth color and appearance.
- They bond to tooth structure chemically and thus do not require the placement of slots, grooves or pins in healthy tooth structure to mechanically retain them.
- The bonding of white fillings to the tooth restore 85% - 95% of the original strength of the tooth.
- They harden in seconds instead of days required by some other materials.
- They may be used on front and back teeth without compromising esthetics.
- If damaged they can often be repaired
Everybody loves a bright white smile, and there are a variety of products and procedures available to help you improve the look of yours.
Many people are satisfied with the results they get from brushing twice daily with a fluoride-containing toothpaste, cleaning between their teeth once a day and the regular cleanings at the dental office. If you decide you would like to go beyond this to make your smile look brighter, you should investigate all of your options.
You can take several approaches to whiten your smile:
- In office bleaching;
- At home bleaching;
If you are a candidate for bleaching, Dr. Schlesinger may suggest a procedure that can be done in the office such as the ZOOM process. This procedure is called chairside bleaching and may require more than one office visit. Each visit may take from one to two hours.
During chairside bleaching, Dr. Schlesinger will apply either a protective gel to your gums or a rubber shield to protect the oral soft tissues. A bleaching agent is then applied to the teeth, and a special light may be used to enhance the action of the agent. Lasers have been used during tooth whitening procedures to enhance the action of the whitening agent.
At-home procedures and products
There are several products available for use at home, which can be dispensed by the doctor.
Bleaching solutions. These products contain peroxide(s), which actually bleach the tooth enamel. These products typically rely on carbamide peroxide as the bleaching agent, carbamide peroxide comes in several different concentrations (10%, 16%, 22%).
Peroxide-containing whiteners typically come in a gel and are placed in a custom mouthguard. Usage regimens vary. Some products are used for about twice a day for 2 weeks, and others are intended for overnight use for 1-2 weeks. If you obtain the bleaching solution from Dr. Schlesinger, he will make a custom-fitted mouthguard for you that will fit your teeth precisely. Currently, only dentist-dispensed home-use 10% carbamide peroxide tray-applied gels carry the ADA seal.
Crowns and conventional bridges or dentures may not be your only options when replacing missing teeth. For some people, dental implants offer a smile that looks and feels very natural. Surgically placed below the gums over a series of appointments, implants fuse to the jawbone and serve as a base for individual replacement teeth, bridges or a denture.
Implants offer stability because they fuse to your bone. Integration of the implants into your jaw also helps your replacement teeth feel more natural and some people also find the secure fit more comfortable than conventional substitutes.
Candidates for dental implants need to have healthy gums and adequate bone to support the implant. A thorough evaluation by Dr.Schlesinger will help determine whether you are a good candidate for dental implants.
If you want a smile that's your crowning glory, you may need a crown to cover a tooth and restore it to its normal shape and size. A crown can make your tooth stronger and improve its appearance.
It can cover and support a tooth with a large filling when there isn't enough tooth left. It can be used to attach a bridge, protect a weak tooth from breaking or restore one that's already broken. A crown is a good way to cover teeth that are discolored or badly shaped. It's also used to cover a dental implant. Caps can be made of porcelain, gold, or a combination of materials.
Tooth loss can occur for many reasons (periodontal disease, decay or trauma). Dentures have been used to replace missing teeth for many years now. Alternative methods used to replace missing teeth include dental implants and fixed bridges.
The loss of your teeth can have negative effects on your self-confidence, your ability to chew food and your bite. Since your teeth provide structure and support to your cheeks, tooth loss can result in the sagging of your cheeks and make you appear older than you are. It is essential that your missing teeth are replaced as soon as possible.
Dentures are removable replacements for your teeth, designed to look and function like your own natural teeth and surrounding gum tissues. Today, dentures can look very realistic and natural and feel comfortable. They can even be constructed with the aid of dental implants for greatly increased comfort.
What Is periodontal (gum) disease?
Periodontal (gum) disease (also known as pyorrhea) is an infection of the tissues surrounding and supporting the teeth. It is a major cause of tooth loss in adults. Because periodontal (gum) disease is usually painless, however, you may not know you have it.
Periodontal (gum) disease is caused by plaque, a sticky film of bacteria that constantly forms on the teeth. These bacteria create toxins that can damage the gums.
In the early stage of periodontal (gum) disease, called gingivitis, the gums can become red, swollen and bleed easily. At this stage, the disease is still reversible and can usually be eliminated by daily brushing and flossing.
In the more advanced stages of periodontal (gum) disease, called periodontitis, the gums and bone that support the teeth can become seriously damaged. The teeth can become loose, fall out or have to be removed by a dentist.
Treatment of gum disease varies based on the severity. Dr. Schlesinger can provide various preventive and interceptive methods to stop the progression of gum disease.