Invisible Braces Bring Visible Results

Invisable to Visable

Invisalign® utilizes 3-D computer technology with clear, plastic removable “aligners” to move teeth at a rate similar to traditional braces, but without any metal or wires. The “aligners” can be removed to eat and clean your teeth and are generally undetectable when worn. The computer imaging technology can predetermine and develop a treatment plan from the initial position of the patient’s teeth to their final desired position. From this a series of custom-made “aligners” are fabricated. Each “aligner” moves teeth incrementally and is worn for about two weeks, then replaced by the next in the series until the final position is achieved.
For years, orthodontists and dentists have used removable appliances for limited treatment. Now Invisalign treats a broader range of cases with greater precision. The principal difference is that Invisalign not only controls forces, but also controls the timing of the force application. At each stage, only certain teeth are allowed to move, and these movements are determined by the orthodontic treatment plan for that particular stage. This results in an efficient force delivery system.
Most people experience temporary, minor discomfort for a few days at the beginning of each new stage of treatment. This is normal and is typically described as a feeling of pressure. It is a sign that Invisalign is working – sequentially moving your teeth to their final destination. This discomfort typically goes away a couple of days after you insert the new “aligner” in the series.
This procedure is especially popular for adults who previously had orthodontic treatment when they were younger and have experienced regression as they’ve aged. Rather than repeat the inconveniences and discomfort of braces all over again, Invisalign provides an appealing alternative.
A common concern is whether or not this treatment is covered by dental insurance. Because dental benefits differ significantly from policy to policy, each patient should review their coverage. However, if a patient has orthodontic coverage, Invisalign should be covered to the same extent as conventional braces. When treatment is complete, some patients might need a positioner, or conventional retainer. Other patients might need a clear plastic retainer similar to the ones Invisalign makes. Please discuss these possibilities with our office. Every patient is different and outcomes vary.

Painful Mouth Sores – Canker versus Cold

posted in: Tucson Dental 0

All mouth sores are painful and irritating, and most of all… unsightly. Below you will find a description of two of the most common type of mouth sores. These are not pre-cancerous sores, but not all sores are created equal. Regular check-up of your teeth, gums, and oral tissues are critical to early detection.

Cold sores are a cluster of fluid-filled blisters known commonly as fever blisters. They may be found on the gum tissue, roof of the mouth or even on and around the lips. These types of sores are contagious and are caused by the Herpes Simplex Virus 1 or 2. The primary infection of this virus usually occurs during childhood and may often be confused with the cold or flu.

Once infected, the virus will remain dormant in the body. Recurrent cold sores may be triggered by irritants such as the sun, stress, illness etc. Once the blister breaks, the scab will form and all will be healed in about 7-10 days. Agents such as topical antiviral creams or systemic medications taken at the onset of symptoms may help to decrease the longevity, discomfort and severity.

Canker sores, unlike cold sores, begin as a red bumps. They may produce a tingling or burning sensation before they appear. There is no known cause for canker sores, and therefore, no exact cure. Treatment is palliative in nature and serves to minimize the discomfort. Like most benign sores, these too shall heal in about 7-10 days. Anything lasting longer warrants a visit to your dentist for examination.

Not all sores are harmless and short-lived. Arizona Dental Medicine provides visual oral cancer screening examination at all recare appointments. In addition, in-depth cancer screenings are provided using the ViziLite Plus examination. This enhanced evaluation improves our ability to identify suspicious areas that may have been missed during the conventional examination. Should you notice any changes in your mouth, painful or non-painful sores, call to schedule an appointment. Early detection of precancerous tissue is the key to possibly saving your life.

Tucson Endodontist – What Happens During A Root Canal

Tucson dentists root canalEndodontic treatment can often be performed in one or two visits and involves the following steps:

  1. The endodontist examines and x-rays the tooth, then administers local anesthetic. After the tooth is numb, the endodontist places a small protective sheet called a “dental dam” over the area to isolate the tooth and keep it clean and free of saliva during the procedure.
  2. The endodontist makes an opening in the crown of the tooth. Very small instruments are used to clean the pulp from the pulp chamber and root canals and to shape the space for filling.
  3. After the space is cleaned and shaped, the endodontist fills the root canals with a biocompatible material, usually a rubber-like material called “gutta-percha.” The gutta-percha is placed with an adhesive cement to ensure complete sealing of the root canals. In most cases, a temporary filling is placed to close the opening. The temporary filling will be removed by your dentist before the tooth is restored.
  4. After the final visit with your endodontist, you must return to your dentist to have a crown or other restoration placed on the tooth to protect and restore it to full function.
    If the tooth lacks sufficient structure to hold the restoration in place, your dentist or endodontist may place a post inside the tooth. Ask your Doctor for more details about the specific restoration planned for your tooth.

Call Arizona Dental Medicine today and schedule an appointment if you need endodontic treatment. 520-297-9069

Tucson Dentist – Why Would I Need a Root Canal

dentist tucson
Endodontic treatment, or a root canal,  is necessary when the pulp, the soft tissue inside the root canal, becomes inflamed or infected.

The inflammation or infection can have a variety of causes: deep decay, repeated dental procedures on the tooth, or a crack or chip in the tooth. In addition, an injury to a tooth may cause pulp damage even if the tooth has no visible chips or cracks. If pulp inflammation or infection is left untreated, it can cause pain or lead to an abscess.

What are the signs of needing endodontic treatment?

Signs to look for include pain, prolonged sensitivity to heat or cold, tenderness to touch and chewing, discoloration of the tooth, and swelling, drainage and tenderness in the lymph nodes as well as nearby bone and gingival tissues. Sometimes, however, there are no symptoms.

How does endodontic treatment save the tooth?

The endodontist removes the inflamed or infected pulp, carefully cleans and shapes the inside of the canal, a channel inside the root, then fills and seals the space. Afterwards, you will return to your dentist, who will place a crown or other restoration on the tooth to protect and restore it to full function. After restoration, the tooth continues to function like any other tooth.

Will I feel pain during or after the procedure?

Many endodontic procedures are performed to relieve the pain of toothaches caused by pulp inflammation or infection. With modern techniques and anesthetics, most patients report that they are comfortable during the procedure.

For the first few days after treatment, your tooth may feel sensitive, especially if there was pain or infection before the procedure. This discomfort can be relieved with over-the-counter or prescription medications.

Follow your endodontist’s instructions carefully. Your tooth may continue to feel slightly different from your other teeth for some time after your endodontic treatment is completed. However, if you have severe pain or pressure or pain that lasts more than a few days, call your endodontist.

If you suspect that you may need a root canal don’t delay in getting help. Call us today…297-9069.

Child’s First Visit To The Dentist

tucson dentistUnless a problem is suspected, we would like to see your child after his/her primary teeth erupt into the mouth [24-36 months].

The most important goals of this first visit are to introduce your child to the office surroundings and to develop a trust in the dentist and our staff. We view this visit as an icebreaker.

If your child is too frightened, uncomfortable or uncooperative, we may have to re-schedule several short visits. You will be charged a reasonable fee for the time.

Please do not try to explain the first visit yourself. Do not use phrases like “Be brave!” or “Don’t be afraid”. Don’t offer them a bribe with special treats to get them to the office. Rather be positive and reassuring that the visit will be fun and one in which to look forward.

The appointment should be 15-30 minutes and may include necessary x-rays, a gentle, comprehensive examination of the teeth, gums, jaws, bite and oral tissues. This is both to observe any problems and to establish a baseline so we can monitor your child’s growth and development.

Depending on your child’s age and cooperation, we may also clean and polish their teeth and apply a topical fluoride. Please bring to this first appointment any of your child’s medical records. We will try to discuss and answer any questions you may have at that time. Our objective is to be gentle and patient so your child develops a positive attitude towards the dental office and their own oral health.

Our long-term goal is prevention and minimizing and dental problems for him/her as they mature.

Call us today to make an appointment for your child’s first visit to the dentist…520.297-9069

Arizona Dental Medicine Celebrates National Children’s Dental Health Month

posted in: Tucson Dental 0

tucson dentistDid you know that February is National Children’s Dental Health Month?

For the past 62 Februaries, the American Dental Association, or ADA, has sponsored National Children’s Dental Health Month to raise awareness about the importance of good oral health starting with children.

National Children’s Dental Health Month began as a one-day event in 1941 in a Cleveland dental clinic. In 1981, however, the program was extended to a month-long celebration known today as National Children’s Dental Health Month.

Tucson dentist Dr. Rochell Riley wants to emphasize that developing good habits at an early age and scheduling regular dental visits helps children get a good start on a lifetime of healthy teeth and gums.

Has your child had their first dental exam? Or a checkup in the last 6 months? Call Dr. Riley today and schedule your child’s pediatric exam today!

 

Considering Dental Implants?

Important Facts to Help Make Your Decision

Many people are unaware of the consequences of losing their teeth or the effects of wearing partial or full dentures upon their jaws and bones. When teeth are lost, the surrounding bone immediately begins to shrink [atrophy]. Implant treatment, for tooth replacement therapy, can be the optimal treatment plan. Here are some important facts to take into consideration.

  • Wearing dentures [plates] accelerates bone loss, and old dentures become loose because of this bone loss. It is possible to watch and wait for bone to disappear to the point where treatment success of any kind is in doubt.
  • At the end of a five-year period, only 40% are still wearing the original partial denture made for them. This is not a great testimonial for value and utility. Those lucky enough to have a functioning partial denture after 5 years are still losing valuable supporting bone.
  • Of those patients who wear a partial denture, 50% chew better without it.
  • One study showed that after 8 years, 40% of the supporting teeth [abutments] that the partial hooks onto were lost through tooth decay or fracture.
  • Patients with natural teeth can bite with about 200 pounds of force. Denture wearers can bite with approxiametly 50 pounds of force. Those wearing dentures for 15 years or more can bite with only about 6 pounds of force, and their diet and eating habits have had to been modified accordingly.
  • The average lower full denture shifts from side to side during chewing and is a significant problem that new denture wearers must get use to and accept.
  • Denture wearers have decreased nutritional intake, a ten year shorter life span, and 30% of denture wearers can only eat soft foods.
  • The single tooth implant success rate is above 98%, and unlike a bridge, the teeth adjacent to the implant are no more at risk than if no teeth were missing.
  • Implant-supported bridges or dentures have 95% success rates over 10 years without the severe loss of supporting bone.

For bone maintenance, the health of adjacent teeth, the longevity of the restoration and patient comfort, implant therapy is the treatment of choice. Implants can restore chewing function to the equivalent of someone with natural teeth. If you have questions or want to know if you are a good candidate for implant tooth replacement therapy, please call our office.  (520) 297-9069

2011 Insurance Benefits

Dentistry, Dental Benefits, Dental InsuranceTime flies…we are almost through 2011.

 

The end of the year will be upon us before we know it; and with the end of the year comes the end of your yearly dental insurance benefits. Did you know that each year insurance companies make millions of dollars off patients who forgo necessary and preventive dental care?

 

Many individuals who are paying for dental insurance do not realize that their plans provide coverage up to a certain dollar amount annually.

 

Consequently, some patients are not scheduling the dental treatment they need, deserve, and have insurance to cover. Thus, the insurance revenues allocated to pay dental claims on many patients are never used, and, unfortunately, those dollars cannot be carried over year-to-year.

 

The bottom line: What the patient does not use they lose.

 

Clearly, it pays in many ways to schedule the preventive care or other dental treatment that you need.

 

We want to make sure that you take full advantage of any remaining benefits your family might have. Many times you may be able to save money by completing your treatment before year’s end and avoid having to pay a new deductible next year. We are here to help you secure the insurance coverage available to you on every dental procedure you schedule.

 

Give us a call today, and together let’s make sure you are in excellent dental health.

 

We look forward to seeing you again and sharing some of the many innovative means we now have available to provide you with superior dental health care.

 

If you have any questions about how much actual coverage remains on your insurance benefits, please call our office so that we can check on that for you. At that time, we can schedule you at the earliest available appointment to ensure you take full advantage of all the insurance benefits you pay for. Please call or email us to make an appointment before the end of the year.

 

We are scheduling November and December appointments at this time. Please don’t wait until the last minute! Our schedule usually fills very quickly in the last quarter of the year.

A Beautiful Smile Is Precious And Priceless

Get Shades Lighter using Teeth Whitening with ZoomDid you know that the shape, shade, length and spacing of your teeth could significantly affect your smile? And our smiles can greatly affect our self-esteem and confidence. Common conditions that impact negatively on your smile include broken, cracked or worn teeth, discolored teeth, missing teeth, crooked teeth, decayed teeth, gaps between your teeth and/or “gummy smiles.” The good news is that with modern technology and improved materials, these situations can be dramatically changed to create natural looking and long-lasting beautiful smiles. Each patient and each specific circumstance must be evaluated on its own merits. Factors such as occlusion [bite], oral habits, available space, health of the gum tissue, severity of the problem and patient expectation must be taken into consideration while planning your cosmetic makeover. Depending on the situation, there are a variety of choices that all result in excellent esthetic outcomes. For whiter natural teeth, in-office or at-home bleaching [whitening] techniques are available. Repairing teeth or closing spaces may be accomplished with tooth-colored composite resin bonding, porcelain veneers or porcelain crowns. These procedures vary in time and cost and have differences in longevity and appearance. If you’re not satisfied with your smile or want to learn if you’re a good candidate for any of these remarkable techniques, call our office for a cosmetic consultation.

1 2 3 4