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Composite or Tooth Colored Filling – Conservative and Cool!

April 7, 2016

Composite or Tooth Colored Filling – Conservative and Cool!

A composite or tooth colored filling may be just what you need to improve your smile!   Sure, they do not last as long as a porcelain restoration and they do have limitations but the goal of this blog is to show a conservative approach to improving a smile and let you know what the potential benefits and complications are when a composite or tooth colored filling or restoration is placed.  Our office loves giving our patients options about their dental treatment so that they can pick the solution that is best for them at that time!

Existing composite or tooth colored filling (restoration) is very stained and the overall color of the teeth is very dark.

Existing composite or tooth colored filling on the front tooth  is stained and rough and the overall color of the teeth is very dark.

In the photos here, a composite or tooth colored filling was used to replace the existing stained restoration on the front tooth.  The patient also wanted an overall brighter tooth shade.

Treatment options for this patient would be as follows:

  • Bleach teeth
  • Gum surgery or plastic surgery of the gums to even the gumline for the central incisors
  • Option of treating both central incisors to create central that were even in size.  (You will note that the left central incisor seems narrower than the right central)
  • Two weeks or more after bleaching is completed, a composite or tooth colored filling (also colled a restoration) or porcelain veneer(s) can be completed to improve the appearance of the teeth.

What the patient selected based on his goals:

  • Bleaching with our custom trays.
  • No gum surgery as not concerned about the discrepancy in height of the front teeth.
  • Composite or tooth colored filling to replace his existing stained one.

Benefits:

  • More conservative than a porcelain veneer and certainly more conservative than two porcelain veneers
  • Instant improvement
  • Smooth and comfortable
  • No anesthetic required for bonding in this area (usually).
  • Lower cost

Disadvantages:

  • Gum surgery would have made the teeth look more even in length and would have added minimal additional cost however this was not a concern for this patient.
  • One central is wider than the other.
  • Over time the composite or tooth colored filling will stain and will need to be replaced.  In our office, we guarantee restorations like this one for two years however depending on the patient’s habits and care, this restoration may last much longer.
  • Composites or tooth colored fillings (restorations) are not as durable as porcelain and the patient will have to be very careful what he bites into or habits like clenching grinding or chewing on things (pens, fingernails etc.)
  • Increased cost.

Please call our office if you have questions about these types of restorations or to see if a composite or tooth colored filling would work for you.  We would love to see you!

Julie Gillis DDS

Restoring Smiles/Restoring Health

Composite or tooth colored filling replacing the existing stained restoration on the front tooth.

Composite or tooth colored filling replacing the existing stained restoration (filling) on the front tooth

Treating Tooth Cavities Without The Drill? Yes we can!

April 17, 2014

In September 2009 DMG America came out with a new product for dentists known as ICON

Our Treatment Assistant, Regina, shares these notes about this exciting new product for treating small areas of decay or decalcification without using the drill as would normally be done for dental fillings!

ICON carrier between two teeth.

ICON carrier between two teeth.

ICON stands for infiltration concept.

Dentists with the use of this new technology can treat incipient tooth decay upon discovery without the use of a dental drill!  Many cavities begin between teeth and in order to get to this decay, a dentist must drill away the healthy tooth structure over the top of the decay allowing the dentist to remove the decay and restore the tooth.  ICON stops the progression of tooth decay when treated in the early stages. This increases the life expectancy for the tooth and is minimally-invasive. Previously dentist had to “wait and watch” until the decay was big enough to justify drilling the tooth, sacrificing healthy tooth structure and then filling the area that was drilled away.

The special carrier is porous on one side only so only the tooth that needs to be conditioned (see green) is treated!

The special carrier is porous on one side only so only the tooth that needs to be conditioned (see green) is treated!

A curing light is used to fuse the infiltrate into the pores of the tooth. The weak area is effectively sealed from further progression of decay!

A curing light is used to fuse the infiltrate into the pores of the tooth. The weak area is effectively sealed from further progression of decay!

ICON works by placing a few solutions that spontaneous flows around the area being treated then hardened by a light which bonds the material to tooth. The area is then evaluated annually with bite-wing x-rays. A variation of this same ICON technique can be used to treat white spot lesions to stabilize demineralized enamel area, and give teeth the appearance of the surrounding healthy enamel.

Our office in Grand Junction, Colorado is very pleased to offer this service for our patients!  Our phone number is (970) 242-3635.  Learn more about our practice on our web site at www.juliegillisdds.com.  We would love to have you “LIKE” us on Facebook! https://www.facebook.com/juliegillisddspc

Yours for better dental health, Regina and Julie Gillis, DDS

Small Cavity or Chipped Tooth? Your Best Fix is a Bonded, Tooth-Colored Restoration!

January 14, 2014

Bonded, Tooth-Colored Restorations –Still the Best Restoration for Small Cavities or Small Chips!

Small chip in tooth due to trauma can be easily restored.

Small chip in tooth due to trauma can be easily restored.

 

Tooth-colored composite material fills in the chip and is bonded  to the tooth.

Tooth-colored composite material fills in the chip and is bonded to the tooth.

Bonded, tooth-colored restorations also known as composite restorations have stood the test of time, and they are still the best restoration for small cavities! 

For years dentists placed amalgam or silver fillings composed primarily of a 50/50 blend of silver and mercury.  First, the dentist would remove the decay, then the dentist would deepen, widen, and undercut the opening into the tooth just so that the silver filling would not fall out of the tooth.  Bonded, tooth-colored restorations or composite fillings can bond to the tooth – even to a flat surface – so the dentist can place a very conservative restoration removing just the decayed and weakened tooth and preserving more of your healthy tooth structure.

 

 

 

 

Decay often starts in the grooves of teeth as this area is hard to keep clean and food and debris packs here.

Decay often starts in the grooves of teeth as this area is hard to keep clean and food and debris packs here.

 

Cavity is removed and tooth health is restored with a bonded, tooth-colored restoration.

Cavity is removed and tooth health is restored with a bonded, tooth-colored restoration.

Some dentists are still placing amalgams or silver/mercury fillings.  We have not used them in our office since about 1995 when I decided that I would not put in someone else’s mouth what I would not want in my own or my children’s mouthes.  Our office prefers bonded, tooth-colored composite fillings when a bonded restoration is the best solution.  Over time, amalgam or silver/mercury fillings act just like any metal and they expand and contract as the temperature of your mouth changes such as when you have a cold or hot drink.  This can cause fractures in the adjacent tooth structure requiring replacing the filling or restoration with an even larger, deeper filling, or with a crown.  Tooth-colored composite restorations are more technique sensitive to place and are generally more time consuming then the older amalgam or  silver/mercury fillings.  But isn’t it worth it? Aren’t your teeth worth it?  We haven’t even touched on the fact that the mercury found in all amalgam or silver fillings is a poison and who wants this in their tooth!

Very visible, stained restoration should either be replaced or polished.

Very visible, stained restoration should either be replaced or polished.

Our office wants you to have what is best for you and for your teeth!  If your tooth-colored restorations stain over time, it is sometimes possible to polish them. This will make them look significantly better, and allow the restoration to function well for much longer.

 

Most of the stain is removed and the restoration may last many more years.

Most of the stain is removed and the restoration may last many more years.

We decide to make the restoration last longer simply by polishing away the defective area!

We decide to make the restoration last longer simply by polishing away the defective area!

Our office would be happy to discuss with you options to restore your teeth or your children’s or loved one’s teeth.  Our goal is to treat you like we would want to be treated and to give you options about your dental care so you can make the right decisions for you! Please call our office to set up an appointment or to ask any questions that you might have. Our office is located in Grand Junction, Colorado.  Our phone number is (970) 242-3635.  You can email us at jgillis@juliegillisdds.com

Our office now has a Facebook page and we would love for you to ‘like’ us! On Facebook, find us at Julie M Gillis DDS PC.

As always, yours for better dental health,

 

Julie Gillis, DDS

Restoring Smiles/Restoring Health

 

 

 

The Time For Amalgam or Silver/Mercury Amalgam Fillings is Past!

October 14, 2013

Tooth-Colored Fillings – Forget Silver/Mercury Amalgam Fillings!

Tooth colored fillings  also known as composite fillings are not new! They are better looking, better for your tooth, more conservative and tooth-colored fillings have stood the test of time for small restorations due to decay or fracture.

If your tooth needs a filling, there are still dentists that recommend silver fillings or amalgam fillings instead of tooth-colored or composite fillings. Silver amalgam fillings are about 50 percent mercury and EVERYONE knows that this material is toxic.  Never mind that the mercury is bound to the silver in the silver filling and MAY not pose a health hazard.  If there is a better choice of filling material that is safer AND better for your tooth wouldn’t you choose it?

It is common to see breakdown of the tooth around old silver fillings.

Cracks and rough edges around this filling indicate bacteria can get below and beside this amalgam. Time to replace it with something better!

In our office we used to place silver or amalgam fillings – that was until about 1995 when I decided that I wouldn’t put in a patient’s mouth something that I would not want in my own or my families teeth!  So, I stopped doing silver fillings altogether and I have never regretted this decision.  Like all metals, silver fillings expand and contract with hot and cold conditions in our mouth.  Over time this can weaken or fracture the surrounding tooth structure. Tooth-colored fillings by contrast, actually bond to the adjacent tooth strengthening it, AND they look like teeth not a black filling!

If you want to replace your old silver or amalgam fillings, or if you need to get new fillings altogether, our restorative dentistry office has natural-looking porcelain and tooth-colored filling or composite filling materials available. These fillings can be created to match your existing tooth color, disguising your dental work from your friends and family. If you wanted to brighten your smile with our available teeth whitening procedures, talk to Dr. Gillis prior to receiving a natural-colored filling so that your new restorations will match your brighter tooth color.

Our office is located in Grand Junction, Colorado.  Our phone number is (970) 242-3635.  Please visit us on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/juliegillisddspc) or call us if you have any questions or concerns.  You can also email our office at jgillis@juliegillisdds.com for further information.

Yours for better health,

Julie Gillis, DDS,

“Restoring Smiles – Restoring Health”

 

 

Will Tooth Bonding Work For You? Please Ask Us For Options!

July 10, 2013

When you have small chips, cracks, or stains, cosmetic bonding may offer a simple cosmetic dentistry solution.

 

The process involves mixing resin to create a shade that matches your natural teeth and applying it to the affected area. The tooth-colored cosmetic bonding material is cured with a light and adheres to the surface of your teeth, immediately resulting in a more beautiful smile. You’ll be able to rest easy knowing that the cosmetic bonding we offer will be practically imperceptible to your loved ones and colleagues.

This small chip is the perfect situation for direct cosmetic bonding!

We offer many services to care for your oral health, from professional cleanings to complete smile makeovers. We believe everyone deserves a beautiful, healthy smile if that is their goal.  Dr. Gillis has advanced training in complex aesthetic restoration, a process that re-establishes the function, health, and beauty of your mouth. When necessary, Dr. Gillis works with a team of specialists including endodontists, periodontists, oral surgeons, and orthodontists to achieve optimum results.

Direct cosmetic bonding as seen below is often able to be completed with no anesthesia, little to no grinding of your tooth, and because we can mix different shades of bonding materials and test them right on your tooth, the color match is very good!  This cosmetic tooth-colored bonding may need to be replaced every few years depending on several things including destructive habits like clenching and grinding, biting into hard food or objects (fingernails, cuticles, pencils, sunflower seeds etc!) and diet.

Conservative direct bonding has been used to repair this front tooth.

This team concept extends to our dental labs who we believe are the finest available in the country. All of our porcelain work is crafted by an AACD accredited lab technician. We believe the combination of an artistic, talented dentist and a high quality dental lab equals superior dentistry and lasting results.

If you would like more information about direct cosmetic bonding or any dental procedure our office would be happy to help! Our office is located in Grand Junction, Colorado.  Our phone number is (970) 242-3635.  Please visit us on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/juliegillisddspc) or call us if you have any questions or concerns.  You can also email our office at jgillis@juliegillisdds.com for further information.

This information shared with you by Julie Gillis, DDS PC .  We feel that your dental health is the top priority, and if we can make your smile more attractive while improving your health that is wonderful! Dr. Gillis practices restorative and cosmetic dentistry including porcelain veneers, tooth whitening, implants, crowns, bridges and periodontal care.  Our office website is www.juliegillisds.com.  For further information, please contact us at (970) 242-3635.

Yours for better health,

Julie Gillis, DDS,

“Restoring Smiles – Restoring Health”

 

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1190 Bookcliff Ave. Suite 201, Grand Junction, CO 81501 USA
Julie M Gillis DDS Grand Junction, CO cosmetic, general, & restorative dentist. (970) 242-3635 (970) 242-8479 jgillis@juliegillisdds.com