Restorative Services

New Albany, IN Dentist

Dentist in New Albany, IN


Air Abrasion

Fillings without being numb! Sound impossible? It’s not! In some instances, it is possible to do a filling without numbing the surrounding area first. Instead of a drill, the doctor uses an air abrasion tool to prepare the tooth. The rest of the filling process is the same as described above.

Amalgam Filling

Silver fillings are occasionally recommended, especially in back teeth. Silver filling material, also known as “amalgam”, is known for its strength and durability. Our choice of filling material for each patient is individual, and will depend on the location and position of the tooth needing treatment.

Silver fillings were the treatment of choice a generation ago. We can replace amalgam with a tooth-colored material for patients who desire a more visually pleasing restoration.

Composite Filling

A composite filling is a filling made of a material called “resin”. Resin comes in a variety of shades and can be matched very closely to natural tooth color. Composite fillings are virtually indistinguishable from non-restored teeth. Composite fillings are an excellent choice for front teeth, and they may be suggested for molars and other back teeth as well. The composites we use are extremely durable.

Bonding

Bonding is a phrase used to describe a very special type of composite filling. Instead of filling a space deep in the tooth, resin is placed on the outside surface of the tooth. Bonding can be perfect for cosmetic uses such as filling in a small chip on a tooth or filling in space between teeth.

Crown

Sometimes a tooth is damaged to such an extent that a filling is not sufficient. In this case, we use a restoration called a “crown”. A crown is a covering for a tooth.

Fitting a patient with a crown is a two step process. At the first visit, the doctor prepares the tooth. The doctor or hygienist will numb the surrounding area. The doctor will reshape any tooth structure that is still viable. He will smooth broken chunks or corners and remove cracked or decayed sections. A dental assistant will take an impression of this newly shaped tooth base. The assistant will use the impression to make a temporary crown, a short-term covering which will be cemented in place before the patient leaves.

That same impression is then sent to a dental laboratory. All of our crowns are crafted in local labs by skilled artisans, who carefully layer shades of ceramic or porcelain to create one-of-a-kind crowns for each patient. The crown is returned to our office within about three weeks. The patient returns to us, and we remove the temporary crown and place the permanent crown. This second visit sometimes requires the patient to be numb, but not always.

A crown must have a solid base on which to sit. When the existing tooth structure is minimal, the doctor will use a sturdy material to “build up” what remains of the tooth, so that a crown can be attached. A build-up is never a final restoration; build-ups are only used as bases for crowns.

Build Up

A crown must have a solid base on which to sit.  When the existing tooth structure is minimal, the doctor will use a sturdy material to “build up” what remains of the tooth, so that a crown can be attached.  A build-up is never a final restoration; build-ups are only used as bases for crowns.

Metal Crown

Porcelain or ceramic are the preferred materials for crowns, because they are much more visually pleasing. Occasionally, the doctor will diagnose the need for a metal crown, or a metal crown with a ceramic coating. Only the doctor can determine the best material for your crown.

Post and Core

A “post” is a pin, of sorts, that is placed into the root area of a tooth when certain crowns are placed. Usually made of metal, a post is only used when a crown is placed on a tooth that has had a root canal. A “core” is used with a post, to reinforce the inner structure of a tooth that has had a root canal.

A bridge is a series of three or more teeth that are attached to each other as one unit. The two ends of the bridge are crowns (see above). The middle of the bridge is a fabricated section shaped like a tooth or teeth. These fabricated teeth are called “pontics”, and they are used to fill empty space that remains when teeth are removed.

Like a crown, a bridge is fitted and delivered in two appointments. The process is the same as for a crown, except slightly more extensive because more teeth are involved. If the middle tooth that will be replaced is not already gone, it will be extracted at the first appointment.

Bridge

Dentures are equal parts restoration and cosmetic. Dentures can never replace your natural teeth, but they can aid in chewing and pronunciation. Dentures can also help support facial muscles. If our doctors recommend a denture, it will only be as a last resort treatment.

Our dentures are meticulously crafted over a period of no fewer than six appointments. We take impressions and try-in the dentures several times to provide the best possible fit. We carefully line up your upper and lower arches so that your bite will be perfect. After you have worn your dentures for a short time, we adjust them to eliminate any sore spots that may develop. Approximately six months after we deliver your denture, we will reline it so that it melds as seamlessly as possible with your gums.

A complete, or conventional, denture is fitted for a patient well after the teeth are gone. These dentures can be placed at any time, even years after the teeth have been removed. An immediate denture is an alternative for patients who still have some teeth, but those teeth cannot be saved and must be removed. Immediate dentures are placed on the same day that the remaining teeth are removed; patients will not be without the appearance of teeth when they choose an immediate denture. It is possible for a patient to have a denture only on the top, only on the bottom, or on both the top and bottom.

Locators: Regular dentures stay in place because they are molded to fit the shape of the patient’s gums and the roof of their mouth. Even the best made dentures can slip and move, especially when eating. A “locator” is a snap, of sorts, that is part of your denture. An oral surgeon will insert metal pins into the jaw bone, and the denture can then be snapped in and out lining up the locators with their bases. Locators provide excellent retention for patients who struggle to keep lower dentures in place.

All-on-Four

Regular dentures stay in place because they are molded to fit the shape of the patient’s gums and the roof of their mouth. Even the best made dentures can slip and move, especially when eating. An “all-on-four” is a denture that is permanently attached to a patient’s mouth by mounting the denture onto a series of screws that are surgically implanted into the jaw bone. It is called “all-on-four” because “all” of the teeth are mounted onto “four” screws, although it is not uncommon for the surgeon to actually use five screws. An all-on-four can be a lengthy process because healing time is needed after the implants are placed.