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You Just Had a Tooth Filling. Was It Done Well?

December 3, 2016

Filed under: Fillings,General Dentistry — Tags: — Dr Gillis @ 12:13 am
POH

POH dental floss. Note how the floss separates into a lot of very fine threads. If a tooth filling flosses well with this type of floss, it will floss well with any floss!

So, you just had a tooth filling?

  • Can you tell if it was done well?
  • Can you tell if your dentist is concerned about the quality of his or her treatment?
  • What should you expect to feel?

Was your tooth filling done well?  This can be a very difficult question to answer! This article discusses some of the things patients should be aware of to evaluate if their filling was done as well as possible.

At this point, you are probably seeing the photos of floss and wondering, “What in the world does shredded floss have to do with the quality of a filling or tooth colored restoration.?” I am so happy you asked!

What should your dentist do to check for a high quality tooth filling?

In our office, tooth fillings are always tooth colored.  We haven’t done a silver/mercury or amalgam filling since 1995!  I realized that If I didn’t want silver fillings in my own mouth, why would I do it on others?  Other blogs address the benefits of tooth colored fillings over silver fillings, so I won’t go into that here.  Here are some of the things we do to make sure our fillings are done as well as possible:

  • We make sure you are comfortable throughout the procedure.  This helps us achieve better quality tooth fillings. When our patients are calm, we can focus on you and your filling!
  • We use the highest quality filling materials and techniques to achieve the best result.
  • We assure that the area is clean and dry before the filling is placed.
  • We use special cleaning agents and medications to decrease tooth sensitivity and for a better, stronger bond to your tooth.
  •  We carefully shape your filling to restore the healthy tooth contours that should be present.
  • We adjust your bite so that you tooth will be comfortable and strong when you chew.
  • We polish the filling so that it will feel smooth to your tongue, and
  • We always check tooth fillings with two types of dental floss.
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Note the wonderful shredding of POH floss. If your tooth filling is not smooth we will know it!

Finally!  The floss comes into play.  The two flosses I like to use to test fillings are Glide and POH.

Glide Glide floss is strong and a great way to tell if there is a solid contact present.  Because it shreds so easily,  POH floss is a wonderful way to see if the edges of the filling are smooth.  If there is roughness present, we polish until the POH slides through without catching or ‘snagging’.  We appreciate the opportunity to serve you and we strive to do the highest quality dentistry possible.  This is the type of dental treatment we would want completed on our own teeth!  Please call our office if you have any questions or concerns (970) 242-3635.

Julie Gillis DDS

Restoring smiles/Restoring Health

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

Tooth Decay That Extends Below the Gums and How to Treat It!

December 2, 2015

Filed under: Dental Health,Fillings — Tags: , — Dr Gillis @ 7:40 pm

Tooth Decay That Extends Below the Gums and How to Treat It!

When you have a cavity or tooth decay that extends below the gums (subgingival) it may be difficult to treat.  Most dental restorative materials require a dentist to keep the area dry during the restoration.  This can be difficult when decay is below the gums! (more…)

Did Your Dentist Ever Warn You About Tooth Bleaching and Bonding?

October 27, 2015

Did your dentist ever warn you about tooth bleaching and having dental treatment that includes any type of bonding?

Custom bleaching trays in place over healthy teeth.

If not, they should have!

(more…)

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

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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