Posts for category: Dental Procedures
Where would you be without your smile? Keeping it bright and healthy pays big dividends in self-confidence and vibrant health. At Gilbert Dental Care in Philadelphia, PA, Dr. Steven Gilbert and Dr. Carlos Velez offer teeth whitening, one of the most sought-after cosmetic dental treatments available today. Learn how professional whitening keeps your valuable smile looking great.
What Is Teeth Whitening?
Teeth whitening from our Philadelphia office removes the stubborn stains from deep inside your tooth enamel where organic material sticks and hides. Dark beverages and foods, the aging process, and tobacco usage all dull and discolor the hard outer layer of your teeth. Simple brushing and flossing helps, but they cannot return your smile to the youthful, bright look it once had.
Additionally, over-the-counter whitening products such as toothpastes, strips, and rinses, somewhat help, but often leave teeth and gums uncomfortably sensitive. Gilbert Dental Care, on the other hand, presents patients with a better alternative: professional teeth whitening
Professional teeth whitening at your dentist's office uses a super-concentrated hydrogen peroxide gel to remove staining organic material from tooth surfaces. Available as a one-hour, in-office service, or as an at-home treatment, professional whitening improves tooth color by up to eight shades, and the results really last.
Is Whitening Right for You?
Your dentist allows patients without decay or gum disease to undergo whitening treatments. Whitening may also accompany other cosmetic services, such as bonding or veneers, to completely recreate your look. You and your dentist will agree as to what treatments are best for you, your busy schedule, and your budget.
If you want super-fast results, in-office whitening is the way to go. Your hygienist will protect your lips and tongue with a plastic damage, apply the gel, and allow it to penetrate your teeth. The gel will then be rinsed off and re-applied as necessary. In total. your whitening takes an hour, and you'll leave Gilbert Dental Care with a new smile.
At-home whitening takes about a week of daily applications via custom-made acrylic trays. The results are similar to the in-office variety, and both last indefinitely if you:
- Brush twice a day according to American Dental Association (ADA) guidelines
- Floss daily to eliminate plaque
- See Dr. Gilbert or Dr. Velez twice a year for check-ups and hygienic cleanings
- Reduce your intake of coffee, tea, and other staining foods
- Stop smoking or chewing tobacco
Interested? Contact our Philadelphia Office Today!
You can say goodbye to dingy teeth when you come to Gilbert Dental Care for professional whitening. Call (215) 972-0406 today to explore the possibilities!
So, you’ve just acquired an attractive restoration with dental implants. You may be thinking at least with these teeth you won’t have to worry about dental disease.
Think again. While the implants and their porcelain crowns are impervious to decay the surrounding gums and bone are still vulnerable to infection. In fact, you could be at risk for a specific type of periodontal (gum) disease called peri-implantitis (inflammation around the implant).
Bacterial plaque, the thin bio-film most responsible for gum disease, can build up on implant crowns just as it does on natural tooth surfaces. If it isn’t removed with daily brushing and flossing and regular dental cleanings the bacteria can trigger an infection in the gums.
Besides weakening gum tissues, gum disease can also cause bone loss, of critical importance to dental implants. An implant depends on the bone they’re inserted in to hold them in place. If the bone around an implant becomes infected it could begin to be lost or dissolve (resorb), which could lead to loss of the implant.
That’s why it’s critical to keep the natural tissue structures supporting your implants infection-free. Not only is daily hygiene a must, but your implants and any remaining natural teeth should undergo professional cleaning at least twice a year or more if your dentist recommends it.
Cleanings involving implants will also be a bit different from natural teeth. While the dental materials used in the crown and implant post are quite durable, regular cleaning instruments can scratch them. Although tiny, these scratches can become hiding places for bacteria and increase your risk of infection.
To avoid this, your hygienist will use instruments (known as scalers and curettes) usually made of plastics or resins rather than metal. The hygienist may still use metal instruments on your remaining natural teeth because their enamel can tolerate metal without becoming scratched creating a smoother surface.
While keeping implants clean can sometimes be a challenge, it’s not impossible. Implants on average have a long-term success rate above 95%. With both you and your dentist caring and maintaining these state-of-the-art restorations, you may be able to enjoy them for decades.
If you would like more information on caring for dental implants, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Dental Implant Maintenance: Implant Teeth must be Cleaned Differently.”
When die-hard music fans hear that their favorite performer is canceling a gig, it’s a big disappointment—especially if the excuse seems less than earth-shaking. Recently, British pop sensation Dua Lipa needed to drop two dates from her world tour with Bruno Mars. However, she had a very good reason.
“I’ve been performing with an awful pain due to my wisdom teeth,” the singer tweeted, “and as advised by my dentist and oral surgeon I have had to have them imminently removed.”
The dental problem Lipa had to deal with, impacted wisdom teeth, is not uncommon in young adults. Also called third molars, wisdom teeth are the last teeth to erupt (emerge from beneath the gums), generally making their appearance between the ages of 18-24. But their debut can cause trouble: Many times, these teeth develop in a way that makes it impossible for them to erupt without negatively affecting the healthy teeth nearby. In this situation, the teeth are called “impacted.”
A number of issues can cause impacted wisdom teeth, including a tooth in an abnormal position, a lack of sufficient space in the jaw, or an obstruction that prevents proper emergence. The most common treatment for impaction is to extract (remove) one or more of the wisdom teeth. This is a routine in-office procedure that may be performed by general dentists or dental specialists.
It’s thought that perhaps 7 out of 10 people ages 20-30 have at least one impacted wisdom tooth. Some cause pain and need to be removed right away; however, this is not always the case. If a wisdom tooth is found to be impacted and is likely to result in future problems, it may be best to have it extracted before symptoms appear. Unfortunately, even with x-rays and other diagnostic tests, it isn’t always possible to predict exactly when—or if—the tooth will actually begin causing trouble. In some situations, the best option may be to carefully monitor the tooth at regular intervals and wait for a clearer sign of whether extraction is necessary.
So if you’re around the age when wisdom teeth are beginning to appear, make sure not to skip your routine dental appointments. That way, you might avoid emergency surgery when you’ve got other plans—like maybe your own world tour!
If you would like more information about wisdom tooth extraction, please call our office to arrange a consultation. You can learn more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Wisdom Teeth” and “Removing Wisdom Teeth.”
The reason for extracting a tooth may be all too obvious — the tooth is too decayed or damaged to attempt saving. The reason for extracting a wisdom tooth, on the other hand, may not be so apparent: from the perspective of pain or reduced function, you may not notice a thing. Our recommendation to remove a wisdom tooth is based primarily on what may be occurring out of view below the gum line and its potential threat to adjacent teeth.
Teeth grow and develop below the gum line in the jaw, and then push their way through the gums as they appear in the mouth (eruption). After a normal eruption, the enamel-covered crown is visible above the gum line; the remaining tooth root (about two-thirds of the tooth’s length) resides below the gum line. Because wisdom teeth, or third molars, erupt rather late between ages 17 and 25, they may lack the room to erupt properly due to crowding from other teeth that have already erupted. This can cause the wisdom tooth not to erupt fully through the gums, leaving the crown trapped below the gum line, a condition known as impaction. For the tooth, impaction increases the chances of infection, cyst formation and gum disease around it.
An impacted wisdom tooth can also cause problems for the adjacent teeth as well. The impacted tooth may begin to press against the roots of other teeth; the resulting pressure can damage the other roots, increasing the risk for disease or future tooth loss. A person may not even know they have this problem since there’s often little to no noticeable pain or symptoms.
It may seem counterintuitive, but the best time to remove a wisdom tooth is when it’s not causing immediate problems. There will be, however, signs found during examination (particularly x-rays or CT scan) that future problems are in the making. By extracting an impacted wisdom tooth at the appropriate time, we can avoid more serious problems in the future and improve oral health.
If you would like more information on wisdom teeth and your oral health, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Removing Wisdom Teeth.”
If you have one, or several missing teeth, you may consider dental implants to fill in your gaps. Dental implants are a sure way to transform your smile into one you can be truly proud of. However, you may not fully understand this procedure or know whether or not you would make a good candidate. Luckily, your dentist can help you answer your questions and find out if you should consider this powerful dental procedure. Find out more about dental implants with Dr. Steve Gilbert and Dr. Carlos Velez at Gilbert Dental Care in Center City, Philadelphia, PA.
Should I consider dental implants?
Implants can replace a single tooth with one standalone implant, several teeth with two implants on either side of a dental bridge, or even all the teeth on an arch using four or more implants to hold a full or partial denture in place. Missing teeth cause bone atrophy. Good candidates for implants should have an adequate amount of bone remaining in the area of their missing tooth to support an implant.
How will dental implants benefit my smile?
Implants keep your smile healthy. The implant replaces the tooth and its root, helping minimize or even eliminate the side effects of a missing tooth. An implant lies within the jawbone under the missing tooth, stimulating the bone to prevent bone atrophy and keeping the bone intact. The implant also fills gaps in the arch to ensure the surrounding teeth do not shift to compensate for the extra room.
Implants function virtually the same as your natural teeth. Implants are made to last a lifetime with the proper care. There is no need to remove a dental implant to clean it or eat. In fact, implants remain permanently in your smile and feel, look, and function just like your natural teeth.
Implants help you look great and feel great, too. Many people are ashamed of the gaps in their smile but are unsure how to go about repairing them. Luckily, with dental implants, you can permanently replace the missing teeth in your mouth, boosting confidence and self-esteem to help you feel better about your appearance and make face-to-face encounters easier and more enjoyable.
Dental Implants in Philadelphia, PA
For more information on dental implants, please contact Dr. Steve Gilbert and Dr. Carlos Velez at Gilbert Dental Care in Center City, Philadelphia, PA. Call (215) 972-0406 to schedule your appointment with your dentist today!